Can You Reuse Cooking Oil?

cheapter than what you don't frugalCan you reuse the oil you’ve used for deep-frying?  Well.  Some people recommend always discarding it because it could have free radicals in it.  Free radicals are altered molecules that are really bad for you, and can increase your chances of cancer.  If your oil smoked at all, definitely toss it.

I usually re-use it.  Sometimes I just skim out any food particles and pour it in a jar I keep in the pantry and reuse it, but that’s not ideal.

Ideally, Let it cool.  Strain it into a jar (you strain it to remove other food particles, because they can spoil the oil or alter the flavor of the next thing you cook in the oil), and refrigerate it.  According to this site, you can use it for six more hours of cooking.

More information here.

You can use it for purposes other than eating.  You can mix it with a bucket of sand and keep tools in it- hedgeclippers, spades, shovels- it keeps the blades clean and oiled, preventing rust.

Use it to remove gummy labels- saturate with oil, wait a bit, rub.  You might need to do this a couple of times for a very gummy label.

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Babies are amazing

2014-10-06 16.03.08My eldest shared this recently:

“When babies are shown the same picture a repeated number of times, they look at it for ever shorter lengths of time. If the picture is replaced by a different one, they will demonstrate revived interest by spending more time looking at the picture and sucking more intensively on their dummies. By measuring dummy sucking and eye movements, researchers are able to determine what a baby perceives as a new object. With the application of this method, it’s possible to show that babies can already perceive whether a picture contains one, two, or three objects just a few days after birth. If babies are shown repeated pictures of the same number of objects, say three cars, three balls, or three bottles, they eventually lose interest. However, if the pictures are exchanged for ones depicting two objects, children become surprised and look at them longer. Control experiments also demonstrated that this had nothing to do with the appearance of the pictures, only the number of objects. So as early as just a few days after birth, children have a conception of number – at least up to three.” ~ from “The Learning Brain: Memory & Brain Development in Children” by Torkel Klingberg

And what occurs to me is that if infants just a few days old can do this, how much they must have been doing already in the womb before birth.

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My Problem With Perry

I want a classical liberal or a Constitutional Conservative (which amounts to largely the same thing.  Perry is neither.

For me, the door swung shut on Perry during the FLDS fiasco, when I learned that he allowed health and human services department to stonewall and hide information from an investigation into foster care in Texas.  The reason was that the investigation was turning up plenty of proof that it’s more dangerous to go into Texas foster care than to be left at home. I wasn’t impressed when he staunchly defended the illegal state kidnapping of some four hundred children in an over the top response to a hoax.

He allowed HHS to abuse their position.  He defended the illegal state kidnapping of FLDS children because he didn’t like the victims.  Philosophically speaking, I don’t see the difference between this and Obama’s political use of the IRS as a weapon against conservatives.   The same principles are violated, it’s just different targets, and I am not okay with using the force of government illegally and unethically just because the targets are or are not sympathetic figures.

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The Press- No Friend to the Public

Most of this is ostensibly about Michelle Bachmann and it’s older.  That’s because for the purposes of this post, the point in the Michelle Bachmann bits of this post is the press attempts to create opinions rather than report on the news.

For those interested in Michelle Bachmann, I strongly suggest you first watch her in an older GOP debate, and then read this AP article about her.

As you read it, ask yourself some questions:

If the photo described in the first paragraph “captures her essence.” why isn’t that photo, such a prominent part of the article, shown to us?

Quick rise?  Is it quicker than Obama’s years in the senate?

Relishes the spotlight?  how so?  What does that even mean? Is there a politician running for office who hides from it?  Are there any politicians who don’t like attention?


Known for piercing and sometimes inaccurate commentary, she regularly aggravates political foes and provides ample fodder to late-night comics. She once falsely claimed taxpayers would be stuck with a $200 million per day tab for Democratic President Barack Obama’s trip to India. She mistakenly identified New Hampshire as the site of the Revolutionary War’s opening shots. (That key American moment occurred in Massachusetts.)

Fifty seven states?  You will get to keep your medical plan and other lies told to pass Obama-CareShovel ready projects? Saving jobs? The historical inaccuracies of his Cairo speech? Misrepresenting the cause of the bridge collapse in Minneapolis. Imagining that history began shortly before his own birth? Giving the legally blind so he cannot watch them anyway Prime Minister of England a ‘gift’ of movies that aren’t playable on British machines. He never wanted to pull out of Iraq?  His own publicity blurb from his literary agent stated he was born in Kenya?

Until about two years ago, the Bachmanns were members of the Salem Evangelical Lutheran Church in Stillwater, Minn., part of a conservative denomination that adheres to strict doctrine and excludes women from church leadership roles. The pastor there, the Rev. Marcus Birkholz, told the AP that the family stopped attending regularly when they moved to another Twin Cities suburb.

Where did the President go to church for decades?  How much did this matter to the press?

Some close to Bachmann privately refer to her as a “light switch.” She flips on the charm to dazzle audiences or nail TV interviews, they say, then takes on a drill sergeant persona in private, where questioning her decisions draws suspicion of disloyalty.

Some?  Who is this ‘some?’  Obviously, it’s somebody we don’t know who claims to be close (or the journalist makes that claim for them) talking to the press behind her back and casting aspersions.  Hmmm.

Compare this to Obama’s reputation for being thin skinned and petulant.

We’re going to be seeing more debates in the future as the next elections are coming up.  So let’s remember how they went in the past:  Betsy,  quoting Jim Geraghty who is bouncing off a point made by Jen Rubin,  points out how trivial the questions at the debate were and why those are the questions CNN thinks it’s appropriate and meaningful to ask Republican candidates- and it’s not because the press sees its job as merely informing the public.



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Cleaning Candle Holders

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This is one of those tips I take for granted as something everybody knows because, after all, I know it and have known it forever. But I forget that I didn’t always know it. I read it somewhere many decades ago and tried it myself. Probably most of you do know it, but just in case…

When you have a candle holder that is blackened from the smoke of a too long wick, all it takes to remove it is rubbing alcohol on a cloth or paper towel. I used toilet paper on this one because the candle is in my bathroom so that’s what was nearest.

Just keep wiping it, using a bit more rubbing alcohol on a clean part of the cloth or paper towel when your efforts seem to be getting diminishing returns.
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The picture at the top of the post is one where I already wiped half of it. It only took about a minute total, and it doesn’t even require that much elbow grease.

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If you have a candleholder with a fancy shape, creating a lot of nooks and crannies inside, you may need a q-tip.

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While on the subject of candle holders- to remove old wax, put the candleholder in the freezer overnight.  The wax pretty much pops out the next day, although you might need to slide the thin tip of a knife between candle and holder in a couple places.

What to do with the old wax?  You can make fire starters for camping or emergency prep, or you can make these pretty ornaments (a very easy craft),  or you can make new candles.

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My Husband’s Lunch: Soup and Etcetera

2014-10-08 12.34.42 This handy, portable container is intended to tote cereal and milk with some fruit toppings. You keep the milk separate from your cereal, so it doesn’t get soggy until you want to pour it in. There is a nifty little compartment for the fruit, or other topping if you prefer, right next to the nifty little spoon that came with it. I bought two of them a while back at our mega-discount store- five acres of unbelievable bargains, but you never know what you’re going to find.

Stay Fit DLX Cereal to Go, EZ Freeze is similar, if you’re interested.*

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This is the compartment where the cereal topping is supposed to go. But I didn’t use this container for breakfast today, I used it for my husband’s lunch. So I put kimchi in it. It’s not a very big compartment, so it’s about right for kimchi. It would also work for a few sliced pickles, olives, cheese cubes, chow mein noodles (the crunchy ones you use for toppings, or a couple packages of tea or emergen-c, depending on the weather and your needs at the time.

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This is the compartment where you are supposed to keep the milk. I don’t really like this so much for milk, because if somebody forgets to, ahem, bring it home, or put it by the sink, or rinse it out after use, it’s a bear to clean. It is a nice place for grapes, though.  Yes, that’s a dog hair I didn’t see when I took the picture. Ew.  And the dog isn’t even allowed in the kitchen, ever.


2014-10-08 12.39.55 I was going to put the soup in the bowl and have him carry it that way and reheat it at the school where he teaches, but I thought better of that. I wasn’t positive it wouldn’t leak, since this section wasn’t intended for liquids. Even when something says it’s microwave safe, I don’t like reheating food in plastic.

And when this container was as full as I thought it should be, it touched the bottom of the kimchi compartment, and I didn’t like that.

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So I poured the soup into a jar and washed out the bottom compartment.

This soup is one of those ‘I can never make this again’ soups. I thought it was chicken broth in my freezer- the label rubbed off so I couldn’t tell. But when I reheated it for my lunch today, it wasn’t chicken broth. It tasted like a delicious potato-split pea soup, and it had some bits of carrot in it as well. It was very rich and yummy, but split pea soup is not on the menu for me since I am doing whole30.

It’s probably a version of this one.
I had some diced chicken and vegetables in the fridge, so I added them to this soup, along with some raw cheese, which I cubed and stirred in.
The chicken and veggies were leftover from a coconut milk/chicken broth Thai soup that had been well seasoned with garlic, red pepper, ginger, and lemongrass. I drank all the broth, which is why there were enough chicken bits and vegetables to the HM’s soup.  I tasted it again, and it was fabulous.

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Now I needed something else to fill the bottom compartment, because an empty compartment in a lunch container is a thing of desolation and not to be borne.

Almonds, dates, golden raisins, and two peanut butter cookies that somebody left here after a communal meal and peanut butter cookies are my favorite so I needed to get them out of the house.


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Actually, that left the compartment a little *too* full, and so I left the cookies in the compartment, along with two pieces of Wasa Flax Seed Crispbread, broken in half to fit. Then I put the nuts and dried fruit in a ziploc bag and put it in between the handle.

Soup in the jar, plenty of other goodies in all the natty little compartments.  Satisfaction.

The HM gets up at about 4 a.m. and leaves for work at around 5.  He works in a different time zone, you see.  The timeline is only about a mile from out house, and we might just start switching over to the other timezone after all, since now the FYG also works in the other time zone, and all our relations except Granny Tea and Shasta’s family live in the other time zone. We’ve switched before.

Anyway, he also doesn’t come home until around 5 p.m. at the earliest, because he has an hour commute (one way). So while sometimes the extra food is just too much (I don’t think he ate all four fat cabbage rolls with quinoa and cheese), sometimes it’s part of breakfast and an afternoon snack as well.

This is also why I didn’t just get up and heat up his soup and put it in a thermos for him.  It will be too long before he eats it, and I don’t get up at 4 a.m.  Nor at 5 a.m.  Not even 6.  I have been known to go to bed at those hours, but I almost never get up that early.

2014-10-08 12.59.41 Because I am married to a man, and if you are, too, you know how this is, sometimes he cannot find things.

So I texted him a picture of where in the fridge he can find his lunch in case he has trouble in the morning. After all, I won’t be up to point it out, because at 52, I have yet to master that part of Proverbs 31.

Who am I kidding? I have yet to even start the kindergarten level of rising while it is still dark, let alone master it.=)


*I have several lunch containers to choose from. While this is one I bought new, it was at a deep discount (I think I paid five dollars). All the others I have found at yard sales.
But this one looks not too outrageously expensive, and it seems to have good space: Stacking Lunch Box – Round Two Tier Tiffin with Vacuum Seal Lid and Stainless Steel Interior (Lime Green)= about fifteen dollars.

For five dollars more you can get stackable stainless steel containers- 3 of them: 3-Tier Stainless Steel Indian-Tiffin

They aren’t water-tight, but you can reheat on the stovetop or over a fire. While one user says she puts hot food in them, and the kids say their food is still warm at lunch time, I’d be happier keeping the food hotter in an insulated bag of some sort, personally.

Another way to send hot food to work with somebody while you are still asleep is to put a soup or stew in the crockpot at night before you go to bed. Leave a thermos next to the crockpot, and so the other party can fill the thermos before heading out the door for work.

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Free Kindle Books- Cookery and Nutrition

Housekeeping and Disclosures:

Unless otherwise noted, books are free or marked down as listed at time of posting, but this can change without notice. Doublecheck.

  • If you click a link and it doesn’t finish loading, just hit refresh. Sometimes the page just kind of hangs for some reason, I am not sure why.
  • If I don’t say, “I loved this book” or “I read this,” Or something along those lines, I haven’t read the book. I haven’t read most of these. I’m just your book bird-dog, sniffing up potential good reads.
  • I use various search methods to come up with titles. Then I read the blurbs, a couple of the best and worst of the reviews, and sometimes scan the free pages.
  • I end up *not* posting more books than I post because I screen out so many this way.
  • Affiliate links: If you click on one of the links and buy something else while you are at Amazon, I will get somewhere between 4 and 7.5 percent of what you spend, unless you are buying penny books. I don’t get anything for those for obvious reasons.
  • You don’t need a Kindle to download and read these.  Scroll down to the bottom of the post for more information on ways and means of filling up your life with more Kindle books than you can shake a stick at.  Why you would want to shake a stick at them, I don’t know, that’s just what Grandma G used to say.

vintage cook with cookbook and bowl

10-DAY GREEN SMOOTHIE CLEANSE (NUTS AND SEEDS RECIPES): Fast and EASY-TO-COOK RECIPES: A Low Carb, Gluten, Sugar and Wheat-Free Cookbook: To Help You After Your 10-Day green smoothie cleanse

Author’s blurb: I am a Personal Development Coach and a trained psychotherapist specializing in weight loss and healthy dieting.

10-DAY GREEN SMOOTHIE CLEANSE (NUTS AND SEEDS RECIPES): Fast and EASY-TO-COOK RECIPES: A Low Carb, Gluten, Sugar and Wheat-Free Cookbook: To Help You After Your 10-Day green smoothie cleanse is a collection of fast and easy-to-cook recipes for anyone on the 10-Day Green Smoothie cleanse, Grain Free Recipes, Gluten Free Recipe, Wheat Free Belly Recipes, Brain Health Recipe, Celiac Recipes, Autoimmunity Recipe, Low Carb Recipes, Sugar Free Recipes.

Do you want to lose weight fast in 10 days without Dieting?
Do you want to protect yourself against type 2 diabetes, improve PMS symptoms, maintain collagen, reduce your risk of cataracts and macular degeneration, and slow the progression of vision loss?
Do you want to maintain a smooth, supple, and firm skin, strong nails and healthy hair?
Do you want crucial nutrient to improving your cardiovascular health, lower blood pressure, promote bone health, and prevent and manage arthritis?
Have you tried many weight loss program that Don’t Seem to Work?
Do you think You are Too obese and Too Old to lose weight in 10 days?

The 10-Day Green Smoothie Cleanse is a Phenomenal Program created to help people lose weight in 10 Days. This program is so powerful and life changing, that many people have achieved weight loss.
However, it is sometimes difficult to maintain the weight loss after the 10 day green smoothie cleanse, and that’s why Jessy J. Smith have prepared this healthy and mouth-watering nut and seeds recipes to Assist with weight loss after the 10 day smoothie cleanse.
In This Book you’ll discover lots of plant-base recipes that are healthy, clean, and delicious!

This 10 DAY GREEN SMOOTHIE CLEANSE (NUTS AND SEEDS RECIPES) Features more than 70+ delicious recipes for complete health and vitality, which will keep your brains vibrant and sharp while dramatically reducing the risk of debilitating neurological diseases. It will provides you with the necessary tools to create a gluten-free diet high in “good fats” and full of wholesome, flavorful foods.

“Have you lose weight but you have had a hard time maintaining it,” this book is just what you need to keep you on track.
This recipe is prepared in a way that you will not feel starved and crave for junks.
First week on the 10-day green smoothie cleanse is the toughest so you need a strong support system. A higher demand on the body deserves better nutrient to help it recover.
The 10-day green smoothie cleanse sure will make you lose a couple of pounds here and there, but some of that might be lean muscle, which you need.
I just feel you should not fixate on some number, true health and physical fitness counts. That is the sole aim of this book to help you maintain good health/weight during and after the 10-day green smoothie cleanse program by JJ SMITH
When you take this follow this book you are going to be loading your body with highly nutritive diet that are beneficial in the fat shrinking process.

Here are but a few of the delicious nuts and seeds recipes ranging from Breakfast, Salad, Soup Appetizers, Snacks, Lunch, Dessert and many more:
Sweet Chestnut Purée Recipe
Sausage and chestnut stuffing
Coconut Ice Cream
Coconut Rice
Banana Sunflower Cookies
Granola Snack Bars
Chia Almond Pancakes
Green Salad with Asparagus & Peas
Raspberry Coconut Chia Pudding Pops
Chia Fresca Drink Recipe
Baked Sesame Chicken
Brazil Nut Cookies Recipe
Sesame Noodles
Rosemary Roasted Cashews
Thai Chicken with Cashew Nuts
Artichoke Sunflower Dip
Coconut-Peanut Fudge
Almond-Crusted Tilap

vintage cook with cookbook and bowl

Pass Me The Paleo’s Paleo Snack Recipes: 25 Quick and Easy Recipes That Your Family Will Love! (Diet, Cookbook. Beginners, Athlete, Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, … gluten free, low carb, low carbohydrate)

Reader Review: This book is great. It gave me a quick understanding of the advantages of the Paleo diet and it includes lots of easy-to-follow recipes for delicious between-meal snacking.

There are so many reasons to eat this way and the health benefits (and the fact that you quickly feel so much better) are just a few.
In fact, each recipe feels new and exciting and makes it feel like these snacks are nothing like following a “diet!”

Guess it’s time to cut back on my favourite chips in favour of the author’s oven-baked sweet potato chips and spiced kale crisps! Do your body a favour and pick up this book!

vintage cook with cookbook and bowl

Lose Belly Fat Diet: The Easy 14 Day Plan: Includes workouts, shopping list, menu plans and recipes!

Blurb: et Bikini Body ready in time for Summer with Sarah’s lose belly fat plan!

Losing belly fat can be a difficult process and it is not one that should be rushed.

After all, it took you time to develop that “spare tire” around your midsection so you shouldn’t expect to lose it in a matter of a few days. With proper diet and exercise, however, you can shred some of that stubborn belly fat and achieve the flat stomach look you desire just in time for swimsuit season.

Included in this comprehensive book -

Facts about belly fat

Tips for trimming belly fat

Food secrets to eliminate belly fat

Workouts to tone up and lose belly fat

Shopping list

Sample recipes

14 day menu with workouts!

Reader review: I grabbed Sarah’s book and was impressed to see she actually talks about visceral fats which many books don’t. This is the type of fat that can really cause problems. She offers an easy to follow 14 day meal plan that is easily modified but also allows you to see what your meals should actually look like. With the included recipes you are off to a great start losing that unwanted belly fat. I believe if you follow through on the author’s advice you should see improvements at the end of the two weeks.

Me: Unfortunately, she recommends a diet using low or nonfat dairy products, emphasizes grains in the diet, considers corn a healthy complex carb such as one might have at every meal, recommends every meal have just 3 ounces of protein (such as egg whites, not yolks), and unlimited vegetables. The egg white only omelette made me gag a little. That said, the tips she gives for building up a routine could be useful, as is her exercise advice.

vintage cook with cookbook and bowl

Grandma’s Best Muffin Recipes (Grandma’s Best Recipes Book 4)

Blurb: Grandma’s Best Muffin Recipes has a wide selection of tasty muffins. You’ll discover a Blueberry Muffin Recipe, a Lemon Muffin Recipe and other traditional fare. In addition there are several savoury muffin recipes as well as some newer recipes. In this category you’ll discover Banana and Peanut Butter Muffins, Tex-Mex Muffins and many more mouth-watering recipes.

Muffins are a great breakfast meal but also make great snacks too. They are quick and easy to make and yummy to eat. They have been around for generations and are still popular today.

If you love easy muffin recipes that are full of flavor, you’ll enjoy this book. The muffins range from decadent to healthy and are simple muffin recipes.

Reader Review: I’ve been a professional cook and baker for over 30 years. I’ve made more muffins in my life than I believe any sane person could eat.

So, I gotta admit, I’m a little muffin jaded. And I’ve seen my share of sloppy kindle cookbooks.

This book is a refreshing original and well-written and down-to-earth. I now understand why Marg has managed to rise above the crowd and become an international best selling cookbook writer.

What do I like about it?
1. It’s well written. Obviously written by someone who loves to bake.
2. It give clear directions that are easy to follow. I especially love her mixing idea in the introduction. I promise it is the #1 difference between tough and light muffins.
3. The recipes are interesting, tasty, and varied. Just what I’m looking for in a cookbook. My favorite so far is the banana chocolate-chip muffins!

So buy this book – and enjoy!

Reader Review: I love cookbooks and lately it seems like all I have seen are books about cookies, cookies and more cookies. What is the answer?? MUFFINS! This book is filled with recipes for some excellent sounding muffins (the cranberry orange oat are to die for) that are easy to make and don’t require a whole lot of ingredients that you wouldn’t ordinarily find around the house. The author does a good job of explaining how to make them and helps you follow the simple process of making sure each recipe comes out perfect. I would have liked to have seen some pictures of the finished product and I also thought the organization could have been a little better if it would have been split into sections, such as breakfast muffins, dessert muffins, etc. Overall this book was fun to read and had some recipes I hadn’t seen before. It’s worth adding to your library of cookbooks.

vintage cook with cookbook and bowl

The Paleo Comfort Foods Cookbook: 36 Everyday Paleo Recipes
a dozen five star reviews and one four star review

Reader Reveiw: Another great book of easy recipes from the Paleo collection. The recipes in this book are easy to make, uses locally available ingredients and can be consumed by both vegans and non-vegans. I have tried some few recipes like the Paleo fresh peach crisp.

vintage cook with cookbook and bowl

Grandma’s Best Chocolate Recipes (Grandma’s Best Recipes Book 1)

24 five star reviews

Blurb: Grandma’s Best Chocolate Recipes will delight chocolate lovers the world over. It includes old-fashioned Chocolate Cake Recipes, a Chocolate Mousse Recipe, and of course the ever winning Chocolate Brownie Recipe.

In addition to that you’ll discover that these are easy chocolate recipes to make and they don’t require any special ingredients. These simple chocolate recipes are brimming with flavor and are truly some of the best chocolate recipes you’ll find anywhere.

In tough economic times it’s comforting to reach back to a time when life was less stressful and the people in our lives were more relaxed. It’s also soothing to allow ourselves a small treat of some of the foods we love best, especially chocolate. It is from this perspective that this book was created.

From The Best Ever Chocolate Chip Cookies to Turtle Bars, this cookbook is brimming with chocolate recipes that will make your mouth water and satisfy your need for chocolate.

These recipes come from three generations of cooks and have been chosen for their flavor and the fact that they are easy and quick to make. You’ll love the recipe for Mom’s Fabulous Fudge and the decadent Death By Chocolate Dessert. It will be hard to pick which recipe you want to make first, but you can and will come back to this cookbook time and again for all your favorite chocolate recipes.

So pick up a copy of Grandma’s Best Chocolate Recipes and enjoy a bit of heaven!

Here is the one 2 star review (the lowest one): One would expect the recipes in a book with a title like this to be made “from scratch,” rather than calling for heavily pre-processed “edible foodlike substances” like boxed cake mixes, brownie mixes, instant puddings, and frozen whipped topping. The recipes that call for real food ingredients are, for the most part, available in other books. If you don’t already have a good recipe for chocolate mousse, turtle bars, and a rich, layered chocolate cake (her Chocolate Truffle Cake), they’re here. Otherwise, don’t bother.

And here is the author’s reply: Sorry you are unhappy with the book. My mother was a grandma for many years (and if she had lived she would have been 99 this year) and she used cake mixes sometimes as well as instant puddings. I personally am a grandma and I use them too, mind you, not that often, but I do use them in a few recipes that I love. I think it’s easy to forget that grandmas don’t have to be 90 years old and that they can be thoroughly modern. Most of these recipes use everyday ingredients and they are made from ‘scratch’. But some do use more modern convenience ingredients.

vintage cook with cookbook and bowl

Things Mother Used to Make A Collection of Old Time Recipes, Some Nearly One Hundred Years Old and Never Published Before

This is fabulous. I’m going to suggest you download the free version at Gutenberg.

vintage cook with cookbook and bowl

Hearty Soups: A Collection of Homemade Soups

Seems to be heavy on dairy based soups, so if you avoid those, be aware.

Reader Review: I’m so happy with this digital recipe digital book, I like it because it is free and the directions are so easy to follow, and also it has beautiful pictures in them. I do my favorite recipe in the selection inside this ebook would be roasted cauliflower, onion and garlic soup and fall harvest soup. I enjoyed the taste of this 2 soup and I’m giving this an outstanding score.

vintage cook with cookbook and bowl

Circle of Friends Cookbook – 25 Bacon Recipes

Here’s a 3-star review: There are some good recipes here including a Bacon Horseradish dip and a Penne with Bacon and Garlic that sounds decadently divine. The recipe for “Game Day Bacon nut Mix” sounds intriguing with its mix of sweet and savory and crunchy, although the Italian seasoning ingredient has me dubious. What’s disappointing is that many of the recipes rely on pre-packaged “convenience” foods like rerigerated rolls, bouillon cubes, and canned soups. (A recipe for bacon pull-apart bread sounds incredibly tasty until you realize it’s made with refrigerated roll rolls, which are filled with chemicals nd preservatives and don’t, at least to me, taste all that good.) Still, the book is worth checking out for recipes like Bacon Kale soup and Maple-glazed bacon (like meat candy!)

Me: I think it’s interesting- Americans have long relied overmuch on pre-packaged convenience foods. Almost every ‘from scratch’ cookbook uses them, going back at least a hundred years. It’s wonderful that so many of us are trying to pull away from that, but it’s hard to find cookbooks that don’t do this. Some exceptions (these are not free, but it is a good time to take advantage of Amazon’s current free trial month of Kindle Unlimited):

Well Fed: Paleo Recipes for People Who Love to Eat

Nom Nom Paleo: Food for Humans

The Art of Simple Food: Notes, Lessons, and Recipes from a Delicious Revolution

vintage cook with cookbook and bowl

40 Top Quinoa Recipes For Weight Loss

The Quinoa Master Cookbook: Delicious Everyday Quinoa Recipes For A Healthy Lifestyle & Weight Loss

Because you can never have too many quinoa recipes, until you five three or four you totally adore, and then you can just stick to those.

vintage cook with cookbook and bowl

9 Types of Copycat Girl Scout Cookies: Your Favorite Copycat Girl Scout Cookie Flavors

You can find all these online yourself, but this is currently free, so why take up that time. I’m thinking a batch or two of these would be a great Christmas present for somebody on your list. Or you could use them in a cookie of the month club gift.

vintage cook with cookbook and bowl

35 Slow Cooker Soups & Stews: Recipes To Warm You Up!

Reader Revew: Soups are popular this time of year, and what could be easier than adding ingredients to a crock pot, setting it, and letting it cook until done? But what ingredients to use? This cookbook has 35 recipes for soup with easy-to-follow instructions. The recipes include vegetable and macaroni soup, cube steak and onion stew, and vegetable and meat stew. With 35 recipes, there’s something for a variety of tastes.

vintage cook with cookbook and bowl

No More Grains: Quick and Easy Wheat, Grain and Gluten-Free Recipes for Eating Well and Feeling Great

Blurb: Wheat, grain and gluten-free recipes for your family that are fun to make and fun to eat.
Having a busy life doesn’t make cooking for your family easy, especially when it comes to finding the right kind of ingredients. Gluten-free, grain-free and wheat-free are, after all, not your typical American diet. However, in many cases, making the switch can represent the ticket to a better, healthier life. But coping with children and their cravings is definitely not easy, especially when you have to balance your job with family, cooking, helping them with their homework and ensuring good quality family-time once in a while.

This book is aimed at those moms and parents who are struggling with it all, and who don’t know how to get started with grain-free eating. This is a book to guide you through the whole process. It has been written to help those busy moms who have limited time for cooking but are trying to use better eating as a path to a healthier life for them and their family.

The book contains 25 wheat, grain and gluten-free recipes for your family that are fun to make and fun to eat. They are all fail-proof and only use ingredients found all year round. All these recipes rely on nutritious ingredients, ensuring that your children get all the nutrients they need with each meal. So put your apron on and start cooking! Have fun and be creative!

Reader Review: This is another great recipe book by Sofia. After reading Gluten Free Slow Cooker Cookbook: The 50 Best Ever Recipes For Unforgettable Healthy Meals I knew this one would be a winner also. With so many recipes to try between the two books I went the easy route with this one and tried out the Stuffed Bell Peppers and Cheesy Zucchini Boats. If you have never had a cheesy zucchini boat it is the only way I will that fruit or vegetable or whatever the heck they classify it as. Make sure to grab both books to complete your gluten free cookbook needs

vintage cook with cookbook and bowl


Tired of opening the lunch box only to find the same old sandwich? Tired of trying to come up with new ideas to send with the kids for lunch or with hubby to take to work? Well dig into this book to get great ideas that will not only inspire you to make lunch but to look forward to break time.

In this book you will find lots of ideas for the lunch box, from sandwiches, to wraps, soups, salads and of course snack recipes to keep things interesting. The recipes are quick, easy, healthy and all made with food that is easily available in your local grocery store.

Authored by Lynn Hall, “22 Ways to Improve Your Lunch ” provides a cookbook that offers recipes of every variety and flavor. While this is not a cookbook that follows any certain “diet” trend or fad health craze, it is focused on health and wellness through fueling the body correctly.

You will find recipes that offer whole wheat, as well as gluten-free options. The recipes include lots of vegetables and delicious treats we love without all the fattening calories and added preservatives.

You will find Paleo recipes as well as some vegetarian, meat-lovers, and comfort food fixes

The book contains many recipes including:

Snacks such as Kale chips and Maple Banana Granola bars;

Wraps such as Plantain and Avocado Chicken;

Salads including Avocado Steak and Mandarin Chicken;

Sandwiches such as Pizza Croissant Roll-ups and Gourmet PB&J;

Soups including French Onion and Black Bean Chili;

Plus many more recipes.

Note your favorites, but try them all! Each one has nutritional information and serving sizes for your convenience as planning ahead is a great way to do lunches so that you aren’t rushed early in the morning.

vintage cook with cookbook and bowl

Sushi Chef : How to make sushi like a Professional

vintage cook with cookbook and bowl

Food Dehydrating Book Package: Food Drying vol. 1 & 2: How to Dry Fruit & How to Dry Vegetables

Reader Review: I would seriously get any book about dehydration recipes from this author again. The key instruction to make sure that fruit and vegetables that you make at home are done safe to prevent contaminates (mold) is covered very well. Instructions on what types of dehydrators to use to make sure that anything you do is safe and easy to understand.

I love books are well informed but not where it makes you feel overwhelmed or to scientific that you don’t want to try it. Easy recipes with instructions to help with what ever kind of dehydrator you have as well as proper storage instructions.

vintage pots and pans orange checked wall


More book-keeping type stuff: Swagbucks remains my favorite source for free Amazon gift cards. And if you haven’t joined, please click on the link and join so that I can keep getting free Amazon gift cards because I am still shameless.

Don’t have a Kindle? : You don’t have to have Kindle to take advantage of these offers. You can read them on various free reading apps. I often read mine on my laptop if they are short enough books, even though I have two kindles.  That’s because my kids keep taking off with the Kindles to read their school books and they don’t remember to recharge them before returning.  I wouldn’t say I’m bitter about it, but I might be a little disgruntled.

If you’re curious, this is the Kindle I have, and I have used others and mine remains my favorite. Mine has Keyboard 3G, Free 3G + Wi-Fi and I don’t have commercial screensavers.  The second Kindle is actually one I was given in exchange for some writing work, and I gave it to my two teens.  It does not have 3G, which is why it’s their Kindle.  Personally,  I don’t like Kindle Fires because I am a crank like that.

Lately, though, since I got my tricky little new phone that does all kinds of magical things and is smarter than me, I have downloaded some books with color illustrations, and downloaded other books direct from Gutenberg, and I have to admit, I like it very much indeed.  You can set up a Kindle account to download to your phone, and download a kindle app for the phone as well.

If you like these free listings, you should also like my Facebook page, because I list other free titles there several times each week.

Yes, my Kindle gets slow because I stuff it too full. You can left click on a title on your Kindle anddelete it from your device, while still keeping it in your list of titles at Amazon in case you want to add it back to your Kindle later without paying for the title all over again. Don’t delete it from folder at Amazon unless you want to rid yourself of it permanently.  Now that I have my tricksy little new phone, I have added it to my list of devices to which I can download devices.  Woot!

Most of the blurbs and book descriptions above are not mine, but come from  reviews on Amazon’s page.

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I love the Kombucha when it sparkles in the cup:

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Those are dried peaches, added for additional flavor and deliciousness.

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New Chair



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Friends of our inherited some new furniture and they couldn’t use it all, so they gave us two recliners.  This one is in the living room.  The Ladybug tells me it is ‘da coziest chair evah!’

The other one is smaller, meaning normal size, a cream colour, and it is upstairs in the Common Room.   It replaces the pink/taupe one that we’ve had for over 16 years.  My brother had given me that previous one when I was pregnant with our son.  It was falling apart and awkwardly crooked, and nobody misses it, although it served us long, honorably, and well.  It withstood the battle of the inkpad, when a two y.o. FYG got into my rubber stamps and chose to do the boogie woogie with my navy blue stamp pads all over the chair (and her hands, and tummy, and arms…).

It supported me through the chicken pox epidemic, when five children came down with the pox, one after the other (including a 3 month old FYB).  I spent a lot of time rocking a feverish and hallucinating FYG in that chair (she ‘saw’ Christmas lights in my hair).  And I held an attachment resistant new daughter there while singing through folksongs in the Seeger book for hours.  And we’ve all sat there while watching movies.

2014-10-04 21.19.59The new chairs have already served well for holding newborn babies, snuggling grandchildren, reading to them, and for aunts and uncles as well.

Although the shortest members of the family tend to avoid this one, as once they sit down, they need to be prepared to stay there for a long time. This ‘most comfy chair evah’ tends to swallow us up.

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Sourdough Bread

I haven’t made it yet. But people shared these videos with me and I want to be able to find them again:

I’ve also heard good things about the GNOWFLINS course, although it’s 25.00.


Making sourdough starter using Kamut flour (which is always non GMO)

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