Monthly Archive: March 2019

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021: crockpot fun: broccoli carrot cheese soup

I changed the original recipe a fair bit since I wanted to go heavy on the broccoli, plus my crockpot is small (2.4 liters sounded fine for one person, but most recipes are written for a bigger one so I always have to alter them), so I’m gonna write it down here…

300-400 grams frozen broccoli
2 shredded carrots
1 small onion
enough garlic to make you happy
2 cups (500 ml) water + half a bouillon cube
150 ml milk/cream (recipe said evaporated milk… which I used and it was good, but ow lactose, so next time I might use regular lactose free milk with a splash of cream instead)
100ish grams cream cheese
100-150 grams shredded cheese
0.5 tsp salt
0.25 tsp black pepper
0.5 tsp oregano
0.5 tsp thyme
0.25 tsp nutmeg
chili powder to your heart’s content

Add broccoli, carrots, onion and garlic to a smallish crockpot. Add cream cheese, spices, water and bouillon cube. Cook until everything is cooked through, maybe 2-3 hours or so on high. (I added half the broccoli after an hour, so that increased cooking time a lot so idek what it would be if I’d put everything in at once.)

When the vegetables are tender, stir in the milk and puree the soup with an immersion blender. Cover and let cook another 10-20 minutes before adding salt, pepper and grated cheese. Cook on high until the cheese has melted.

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020: Seed packets

This is possibly a bit niche and definitely completely unnecessary, but a fun thing with ADHD is that sometimes you just Have To Do Things, and this weekend that Thing was making little envelopes to put all my flower and vegetables seeds in so they’d be uniform. Previously they ranged from jars, to coffee filters (wrapped up and taped closed), and regular ones I’d bought. And then I found a glass jar to put them in. And then, suddenly, I was slaughtering a notebook for it’s pretty papers, and figured out how to make these in the perfect size, and I honestly just want to remember how I did it in case I need more. So, picture time, because just writing down the instructions without a step-by-step is useless, as I found when I tried to ask the internet how to do this.

This is the finished product! It has type, name and year they were bought or picked on the front. If they’re commercial seeds I cut out and taped the instructions on the back, but left the top untaped, so I could tuck the top of the envelope underneath it.

I happened to have these laying around, so that’s what I used. They also happened to be 15 cm (6ish inches) along the short side, so that’s the size I cut, which will give you an envelope that’s 9×6 cm (3.5×2.5ish inches).

So, cut a 15 cm square. Fold it from corner to corner, and then mark 6 cm in from the edge on both sides. (I forgot to take a picture of the actual marks. Arrows will have to do.)

 

Fold the sides in like this! Stand it up on it’s edge, to take a good picture.

Once you’ve folded the sides in, also fold the first of the top pieces down. Then, fold out the sides again (you only folded them first to get the top thing to line up, you see), and glue the top down like this. Glue isn’t really necessary because it’ll keep together anyway but seeds are sometimes tiny so I did it to be safe.

Then, forget what you’re doing, finish a dozen envelopes and then realise that OH RIGHT, it’s tutorial time. Continue with pictures, although you’re now using a white paper, not a green. So, unfold it again, and glue only the triangle I marked out, because you need to be able to tuck the tips in for the next step, and you can’t do that if the bottom is glued.

Fold it back up, and then fold in the sides (glue them down if you want!), and tuck them together like this.

And then you have this! I folded some extra envelopes too, because I ordered some more seeds online, and I want somewhere to put them when they arrive! I’m way more about vegetables than flowers, but when they arrive I will have the following:

Vegetables:
carrot x 2 (regular, and mixed colour),
beets x 2 (regular and striped),
tomatoes x 2 (regular, yellow tiny tomatoes),
sugar snap peas,
broccoli (failed last year, trying again),
cucumber (I have no idea how to grow cucumber),
bell pepper (have never successfully grown bell pepper),
physalis (saved from a fruit),
butternut squash (also saved from a fruit).

Flowers:
marigold (picked off last year’s flowers, that were picked off the previous year’s flowers, etc, you can do this endlessly),
runner beans (which I grow for the flowers, and just save the beans to plant the following year, so I count them as flowers),
malva,
Indian cress,
two kinds of tiny blue flowers,
gigantic red sunflowers.

Summer can’t come soon enough.

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019: Books of February

February was a sucky month for books! I fell into a slump and every book took weeks. But trying to keep this up.

Goal for the year: 50 books.
Books read by January 31st: 8.
Books ahead of schedule: 0.33 (50 books / 12 months x 2 = 0.33)

Book bingo: fiction: 3 of 16 books read.
Goal for the month: 2.33 total for January-February, so 0.66 ahead of schedule.

Book bingo: non-fiction: 3 of 16 books read.
Goal for the month: 2.33 total for January-February, so 0.66 ahead of schedule.

 

 

Becoming by Michelle Obama

Date: January 20th-February 10th
Stars: ★★★★☆

I loved this book. Michelle Obama feels so genuine and real, and a very intelligent, accomplished woman, coming from a working class family, with a disabled parent. Until we hit the point where she was proud (?) to push BMI measurements a standard care in children (this is utterly bullshit people, here’s my Instagram caption about it) I had heart in my eyes. It’s the one thing about her, and about this book that really disappointed me, so it’s still a 4.5 rounded down, but seriously? She’s too intelligent to ever believe that’s a good thing.

 

Holding Up the Universe by Jennifer Niven

Date: February 16th-27th
Stars: ★★★★★

My first five star book of the year! I loved this one so much. It has a lot of low ratings and outraged people on GoodReads, but I’m not one of them. It is a somewhat exaggerated story: Libby is not just fat, she was once cut out of her house because she was too fat to fit through the door; Jack doesn’t just have face blindness, he has the most severe case the doctors have ever seen. But Libby’s story about her size, and how it affects her hits me hard, and Jack’s experience of the world, which is filled with strangers and people who expect things he can’t give them (i.e., remembering who they are), is so anxiety inducing and terrifying. As someone with agoraphobia I identify so hard with these two kids, even though neither of them do, and the love story is sweet and painful and I love it. So, five stars it is.