When I was a kid, they weren´t available all year round here in Denmark, but – globalization has made it pretty common. However, to me, oranges and other orange citrus-fruits like mandarines and clementines are “christmassy”. However – I always end up with a net of oranges, that I can´t eat, but I don´t really know how to cook with oranges.
So…I decided to “ask the past”…
In the Housewifes lexicon from 1946, they list different ways to use your oranges. Having friends from abroad, I know, that we don´t always use the same names for the same foods (a bisquit in the US is not the same as a bisquit in Europe), but I am not a native english/american speaker, so…I´ll just write the Danish word for it, and how I believe it is translated, so you can make your own research.
I haven´t got the time to write all the recipes just yet, and since I don´t think posting recipes I didn´t try myself – is appropriate, I am on my way to buy this years first net of oranges 😀 I can´t wait to show you ❤
Appelsinbudding – orange pudding
Appelsincreme – orange cream (maybe custard?)
Appelsindrik – Orangeade (like lemonade?)
Appelsinfromage – Orange mousse
Appelsingele – Orange jelly
Appelsinglasur – Orange frosting
Appelsin-is – Orange ice
Appelsinkoldskål – I honestly cannot translate this – it´s a cold milk-soup usually for summer
Nope. I’m not really a housewife, but I am married (yup, we had a Corona-gerden-wedding) and I have a crush for old books and knowledge that seem long forgotten. So when I found this book I couldn’t help myself. First edition from 1930, but this 7th edition is from 1953.
My husband thinks I’m crazy, but he has learned a lot since me purchasing this. Going back to basics is not all bad, and considering the times we’re in right now, learning from the past is maybe not such a bad idea after all?
I know, I learned from my great grandma and the two tiny book/pamphlets she wrote when she was old and shared with all of us, her kids, grandkids and everyone of her family members – if we wanted one. I accepted, and I also It is only one sentence, but I believe that it is the reason why I’m so obsessed with trying to stay safe and not spread the covid-19 virus. Reading the few lines about my great grandma only just surviving the Spanish flu in 1918 so many times, had me on alert from an early beginning.
I want to take care of my family in many many years to come as well. So I will be writing about these times. Let them know what happened and about what basic skills you need to make it through rough times. I’m not an actual prepper in the doomsday version, but there will be other pandemics, and nature seems to strike back at us. So the immense prosperity and easy life we in the western world has gotten used to, is maybe not what we are looking in to for the next few generations.
So why am I writing about this? Because I know this blog was supposed to be a frugal blog, but now it is turning in to so much more, changing its perspective from just saving money in to a different kind of awareness, and maybe even ending up being more personal.
We have people close to us and in our household with respitory diseases and autoimmune diseases, so no matter how “not alarmed” other people are – we have changed our ways of living. Not much – but enough for other people to notice it and think we´re bonkers. But honestly – if our biggest loss is being called bunkers and being wrong – we are satisfied. We´re actually hoping that this is the case.
we´ve filled the pantry
neither of us shake hands or hug other people
we only buy what is in boxes or bags that can be wiped down with alcohol – so no fresh groceries for us except what we grow
visitors are told to spray hands with alcohol and if we serve them anything, they put their glass in the dishwasher them selves, and we use the intensive program.
only one of us shops. Me. And I have shopping clothes and wear gloves. I only touch what I buy.
we are pretty much self-quaranteening – not totally due to jobs, but we want to be able to track down people we either infect or know who might infected us.
We´ve cancelled meetings where we´ve had to be close to others and unable to stay out of 2 m. and I wipe off handles and sinks etc. when using other toilets than my own…
– and most important – we are open about our worries.
We made it through Christmas and new years eve…and no. We didn’t manage to stay frugal. Actually it went the other way. Having the small ones for the first time made us lose our focus, but it’s fine. My adult son was home too. Next year is without kids, and it’ll be an entirely other level. We spent the night with B’s sister and this was all the presents, primarily for the three small kids there, but I was showered with love in the form of presents as well.
Getting married in a few..five…months time, B decided that my golden and simple engagement ring should have a tiny diamond. We had originally agreed on just moving it from one hand to another, but he wanted to make sure it was something special after the wedding. I was happy to learn he made an effort to make sure it wasn’t blood-diamonds, but it did cost a bit extra. We will add it to the ring in may a few weeks before the wedding.
New years eve we spent alone. We needed it. And I got to test my crockpot for real by making brisket. It was amazing. So was the homemade “kransekage” because in Denmark you can’t have new years eve without this. Most people buy it, because it’s pretty sticky and they think it’s too much work, but that’s because they’ve never tried it. If you can live with the amateur look it’s better than the store bought one. The recipe should be with the picture.
January has, so far, brought knowledge that adding your credit card to Google play is a shitty idea. I didn’t…but B did. And we decided to check out how much money had used on his games…which created a relationship crisis. I won’t say how much he spent the last 18 months, but… me deciding to try to save money on my wedding dress and foods and so on because “we don’t have a lot of money”…. I felt betrayed, and he was not in his proudest moment to say the least. He didn’t realise the amount until then.
Buuut… You can only fix what you know what’s broken, so we took off the possibility to buy stuff online, and got him an old nokia. Which actually freed a lot of time together as well. Maybe some day he’ll be back on the android, but we’ve talked about waiting until after the wedding just to keep it safe.
This weekend it was time for us to get a tree and decorate it. We decided a long time ago, that we´d get a plastic tree, if we could get a nice one – and if we promised each other, that we will use it for at least 20 years, we would feel okay about it. Both of us have ADHD and our experiences with real trees are, that we forget everything about them, so when we reach april, the livingroom is fully covered in the needles from the tree. We also have a cat and a dog, and bringing in a real tree would be…too exciting for them, and I was right. I´ve been fighting them off all the other years, but none of them seem to even recognise, that there´s a tree in the livingroom – and the good thing with the plastic tree is alto, that it´s possible to push it up against one corner, so it doesn´t take up too much space. There´s the environmental thing, but I´m not sure it´s as bad, if we use it for as long as possible and go to the recycling station and wort the different bits and pieces in the right materials. I hope we´re right. Either way we´re saving quite a bit of money on NOT buying a tree every year and start up the car to go get it etc. But let me know what you think (and maybe even know).
We bought a Spitsbergen tree – and ofcourse we did that on black friday alongside the last christmas-gifts. We got a decent discount of about 35%, so it was okay. I was pretty surprised how good quality it was and how lifelike it is, although it´s only the outer branches, that are really natural, but it´s a compromise, we were ready to accept.
It´s out first christmas with B´s kids, as they´ve been with their mother every year up til now, and B has celebrated christmas with her family even though the divorce was final almost 3 years ago when I met him. He didn´t think he could give them just as good a christmas as she could, and they were pretty young. This year, however, it felt wrong, for us to go to her family, when we´re kind of starting our own traditions and ways of doing things as a couple with three kids, so we´re having the kids, and we´re turning the christmas-preperations up a notch.
So… this sunday we decorated the christmas tree, and a really good thing about putting it in the corner is, that it is possible to decorate a tree with the same amount of lights as when I only had little trees standing on a small side table. I really enjoy it – and how it brings hygge in to our living room. I´ve decided, since we have a plastic tree, to compensate and not buy “gold lametta”, even though it has been one of my guilty pleasures for decades, when it came to christmas trees. I do need a it more sparkle to be satisfied, but…I will have to think about better solutions that can be used every year.
This is my kitchen from yesterday – it still looks like this btw. We´re not perfect people in this house at all, and I refuse to pretend that I am in this blog too. Actually people pretending to be perfect in blogs and on youtube and other platforms scares me. I can´t stop thinking what´s hiding beneath the surface, and having a crazy imagination like me does not make pretty stories just because people are pretty and lead pretty cute lives. So when thinking about starting this blog, we had conversations about how honest to be here on the blog, we agreed to go “all in” – but ofcourse with respect to the people around us and each other and our wish to stay together for the rest of our lives.
As you can see in the above picture, my kitchen window is right next to the street in our little cul de sac, and it wouldn´t be a problem if the people around us were about the same age and had lives, so they would not be so busy. But appearantly mostly “elderly” people lives here, and some how they have time for “strolling” while looking through windows all day long, so I have to smile and pretend, that I´m proud of my mess…which I´m not.
We’ve been wanting to put up curtains for a while, but money are an issue so we were quite hesitant because we remembered the drama and the expenses about the livingroom curtains that we felt the need to buy after only living here for a week.
Luckily I went to the goodwill shop last week, and I stumbled across a sheet with broderie anglaise all around the edges, and since it was cheep (15dkr), and I also found a curtain rod for less than that, I had no more excuses than to make those curtains and keep a nice facade…
Here´s a “how to”
I´m pretty satisifed with the curtains. to be honest. I decided to (have B) hang them a bit above the counter, because I know I´m a mess at the sink, so I have to be able to wipe it off without thinking about moving the curtain to avoid the cloth.
This was supposed to be our weekend with the kids, but they had signed up for their first scout-camp this weekend, so we picked them up today and they´re going to school (and their moms place) tomorrow. It´s a bit sad for us, but they had an amazing trip with their friends and we picked them up all covered in mud and dirt with glassy tired eyes and red cheeks. Just as they´re supposed to be.
The only thing that didn´t go in the washing machine today was the kids (they showered) and being a bit too frugal I overloaded the machine with jackets, snowsuits, sleeping bags and everything else…so it refused to function and we had to empty it manually and…yeah…*deep breath*… we had to use the dryer to make it before midnight. Little monsters really generate a lot of laundry.
I don´t enjoy the thought of tomorrow though, because the mix of a tiny car and the boys´muddy boots are just…*sigh*… oh well, we thought about going to the carwash anyway, and I DID think about making car seat (and trunk) covers from an old tarp I have laying around somewhere…so yeah, no need to complain – except from the fact that I wish I didn´t procrastinate the first time I thought about makin it, so I didn´t have a muddy car on the inside as well. I will make a post about the tarp-project some day this week… and post pictures of my muddy car seat below this paragraph tomorrow.
But anyway, my little monsters are going home tomorrow, and because I had a lot of ripe bananas and a few carrots left, I decided to experiment and bake a banana bread – thingy for them to take to school.
B worked in London “back in the 90´s” and when we visited one of my many ex´s brother in law – who has the CUTEST and most amazin cake-shop named “Cravings” in Copenhagen – a few months ago, B had banana bread and said it brought him back to “when” while he looked at me with teary eyes and a smile on his face that wouldn´t come off.
SO…of course my plan was to destroy that sweet memory and bake a different version of banana-bread and maybe even make it healthy-er, so the teachers don´t frown too much because the kids are bringing cake to school…
I don´t know how it will be just yet – it´s in the oven right now, while I´m sitting here writing. But if it is a crappy recipe – you will know what NOT to use, right? 😀
Banana and carrot bread
READ the recipe before you begin – I am a very spontaneous person when cooking, so I don´t even out spoons or anything – it´s pretty much a “go with the flow” thing.
3 very ripe bananas (dark spots on the peel is good for the sugar-level)
3 small (ok mine were tiny) carrots – peeled
50g (1/3 cup) butter (I used salted)
Salt – a little more than a so called pinch
1,5 teaspoon of baking soda
50g (about 1/2cup) white sugar
50g (1/2cup) whole wheat rye flour
100g (1 cup) wheat flour
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1,5 teaspoon vanilla-sugar (or what ever kind of vanilla it measures up to)
First I preheated the oven (convection) to 175C/350F
Then I mashed the bananas completely (use a fork if you don´t want to do too many dishes, but I´m lazy and B is amazing, so I used my tupperware-chopper-thingy (I googled it and its called a smooth chopper)
I tupperware-thingy-chopped the carrots as well, but you may grate them if that is what you prefer
Now melt the butter and mix it in
Crack an egg and throw it in along with the salt
It´s obvious that the picure below has the wheat flour, baking soda, rye flour, cinnamon, sugar and vanilla in it, right? Well…it has. Mix it for a few moments, but not too much, just to make sure everything is “wet” and mixed “okay”.
I have this silicone baking dish from Tupperware as well, and yes – it´s expensive if you have to buy it, but I got it as a hostess-present 7 years ago, so here´s a frugal tip for you: host a tupperware party and get a free gift – but remember to check out and wait for the right present, or you´ll end up with weird sh*t….Anyway I did oil it up a bit today, because my darling B put it in the dishwasher last time I used it, and I wanted to be sure I could get the bread out for pretty pictures for you lot.
baking time? Yeah… that´s actually a mystery for me, because the usual recipes online says 45-50 minutes, but it was still sticking to my knitting pin when I tested it, so I turned off the heat and left it in there for “a while”…and yes…it´s dark, but I didn´t burn it…and it doesn´t really taste burned, although there IS a caramelized and unknown flavor to it, so maybe I did burn it a little?
REVIEW: It´s really soft – waaay more than I expected – and it´s not too sweet but still yummy, so I guess I´ll go grab another piece before someone eats it all within a blink of an eye.
So I finally managed to decide which theme to work with, so now it´s off to work and posting everything I´m experiencing along the way in this fragile beginning of my blog about how we practice this frugal lifestyle. This is basically a test, before I bury myself further into the customizing tools. I´ll write more later. See ya! 😀