Saturday, January 30, 2016

Wrinkly Apple Upside Down Cake

I hate letting food go to waste, but sometimes, especially when you buy in bulk, things can start to look a little unappetizing before you've had a chance to finish them.  And then just try getting the family to eat them!  So, for items I buy in large quantities, especially fruits and vegetables, I like to be ready -- once things begin to look a little wizened -- with a good use-up strategy.

My family eats a lot of apples, and I buy them by the dozen.  About the time they start to go a little soft and wrinkly, I know just what to do:  I make a Wrinkly Apple Upside Down Cake.  (And if the main thing wrinkling up right now is your nose, please observe that I did not say Rotten Apple Upside Down Cake!  Who would want that?)

Friday, January 29, 2016

3 Things I'm Pretty Sure I'm Sure About Money

Dave Ramsey has the right idea.  In his book, Dave Ramsey's Complete Guide to Money, he repeatedly says that one lesson he had to learn the hard way was not to "take financial advice from broke people."  So, who can you go to for financial advice?  Dave says his life turned around when he went "on a quest to find out everything [he] could about God's and Grandma's ways of handling money."  Bravo, Dave.  You are a wise dude, indeed.

So, what exactly are my qualifications for claiming that I know something about money?  Fair enough.  Here are some of my credentials:
  • I am a granny, obviously.  And thanks, Dave.  But more to the point...
  • I am not a broke person.  But, much like Dave Ramsey, I once WAS a broke person, and I learned a lot of valuable financial lessons the hard way in order to transform myself into a FORMERLY broke person.
  • I'll add a third:  I'm not after YOUR money, as so many "professional financial advisers" are.
Notice I did NOT say that I am a financial expert, even though I have a college degree in a financial field and spent decades working as an accounting professional.  I've learned enough to know that I'm still learning how to handle money and expect I always will be.  But there are quite a few things I've figured out for myself, and I'm happy to share what I've learned with you.  For free.  And you can pay attention to what I have to say, or don't.  Your money, your choice.

How about if we start with some good news?

Monday, January 18, 2016

Another Reason to Love Breakfast: The Muffin McEgg

I love breakfast food.  I love eggs, especially, and I could (and often do) eat them every day of the week.  My love for eggs started my freshman year in college.  I used to schedule my classes as early in the morning as possible so I could get them over with and have all afternoon to study (or walk into town for some shopping.)  That meant I was usually able to make it to the cafeteria in time for breakfast, which always featured piles of perfectly-cooked eggs over easy.  They were so pretty and appetizing, I was never tempted by the sugary pastries.

Between eating sensible meals in the school cafeteria and walking to and from my classes, instead of gaining "the freshman 15," I actually lost a few pounds that year.  Here is a candid shot of me circa 1981, snapped by a photography student who was trying to capture, not just my image, but my phone number:

Did I give it to him?  I'll never tell.  (And stop laughing at my hairstyle.)

But anyway, that's when my love of breakfast began, and to this day I never skip it.  I also never eat anything sugary or carb-y first thing in the morning.  Usually it's just eggs over easy (still my favorite) with a slice of buttered, gluten-free toast or a veggie-stuffed omelet.  Once in a while, though, I whip up a special treat my svelte and beautiful (and breakfast-loving) daughter turned me onto:  We call it a Muffin McEgg.