When you live alone, as I do, with very little to do, you tend to start analyzing things you do. Okay, replace all those “you’s” with “I” – “I” am analyzing even more, if you can believe it, what I do. And I have come to realize that I hate to waste things. It all started back in the day with Christmas trees. Going way back, 30 years, Dennis and I would go cut one down, in the freezing cold, take it home, decorate it of course, and in the end throw it over the hillside or in the woods. That was okay because it was like composting. Dust to dust and all…. But then in Fair Oaks, without Dennis, I would buy real trees, Zachary hated, and I mean hated, to decorate it, we’d cut our arms all up getting those lights just right but at least to me it would be worth it. Every night I would sit by that tree, watching TV or whatever all the while adoring my tree. I loved my Christmas trees. But then, it would end up on the curb. ON THE CURB!! I mean first you ask this tree to give up it’s life, but then you decorate it and admire it for a few weeks giving it the main focus of your life, I mean that tree is living high in the scheme of things and then you thank it for giving up it’s life by leaving it on the curb…with the garbage. I couldn’t stand it. Just couldn’t take it. So I switched to an artificial tree. Yes I did. I couldn’t stand wasting that trees life. I have been much happier with artificial.
And flowers? I have always had a dead zone, in every house I’ve ever owned. You know how you buy those cute little plants to brighten up your house, your table, or someone gives you as a gift and then they die? I can’t stand throwing them in the garbage. So I always plant them. I even started a dead zone at my mom’s last year. I checked on it last week when I was up there. I actually think something (a begonia) came up. The Poinsettia didn’t look so hot. I should probably make them into mulch better instead of those dead sticks sticking up out of the ground. Well, next visit. I mean it’s okay if they are in the ground dead, just not the garbage. And at least give them a chance, ya know?
I’ve mastered the reuse of vegetables, thanks to my friend Jean, who taught me that you take allll the scraps and keep them in the freezer until the next time you make broth. So now after I buy one of those rotisserie chickens I throw the whole carcass, together with a couple handfuls of veggies (now frozen) simmer a few hours and I’m not gonna lie, I make really good chicken broth with those scraps. And I mean all scraps. Skins of onions, ends of carrots, ends of anything, seeds of peppers. I have read the ends have all the taste and nutrients. Well anyway, I still feel a bit bad throwing out the veggies after the broth is made (at my mom’s they go in the compost) but I have yet to figure out what to do with the scraps after cooking. Ellen, will chickens eat those? Are there any nutrients left for them?
And I’ve been missing my juicer lately. That thing was like a dinosaur though. I rarely used it the last couple years – like maybe never, so when it came to losing it in the storage wars I was okay with it. But when I first got it I loved making carrot and apple juice, throw in a lemon, it was like heaven. Being that it’s fall now I’ve been making applesauce. It’s apple season (up north) so while visiting my kids I made a big pot of applesauce with the apples from the farmer’s market. I LOVE the farmers market (but you already know that) And then at my mom’s I made applesauce for her. So I bought a big bag of apples at Wegmans, in Richmond, and brought them here and have been making (and sharing with Julia) more applesauce. Normally, if I still had that juicer, I would take all those cores and skins and throw them in the juicer, with a lemon and lime (left over from all these Purple Carrot recipes) and drink that delicious juice. But instead I saved all these apple scraps for Julia’s chickens. I kept them in the refrigerator all weekend and was thrilled to know that I was going to Julia’s for a staff meeting this morning and I could take those apple scraps to her for her chickens and therefore not waste.
I looked pretty cute for work today. Nice linen pants, a little sleeveless lacy top (still can’t figure out those damn bra straps) and then put on my shoes that are sparkly and cute. I got the apple scraps from the refrigerator, scoured the house for a bag to transport them there (believe it or not I threw out all my bags pre- Irma incase the house got flooded I didn’t need all those wet bags – so I put them in the recycling…see how good?) anyway, found a bag for the apple scraps I so carefully saved. Julia is happy to have the scraps but when I bring them I have to feed the chickens myself. The coop is in the back of the yard (as most chicken coops should be)
I looked at my shoes, looked at the apples, looked at my shoes again…thought about the walk through the wet yard to the chicken coop and threw those apples right in the garbage.