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Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Using Up Every Last Morsel of Holiday Treat Foods

Y'all know the saying - waste not, want not. This is something that sticks in my mind. I actively try to not waste and to salvage what I can, whenever I can. I know that this is better for our finances and leaves more resources for the next person.

Due to our illness-interrupted holiday season, we are just now finishing off all of our edible treats. I know, most of you finished off goodies eons ago. However, I'm going to write about them today, as you may want to hear how we've creatively used some of our remaining treat foods.

Here's what we're been using up:

There was less than a half-cup of eggnog left, plus it was over a week past the sell-by date. I used it in a batch of eggnog scones. Basically, eggnog scones are a regular scone recipe, with added sugar, nutmeg, and vanilla to bump up the eggnog flavor. The scones were delicious and prevented the waste of that last bit of eggnog.

My daughters made frosted sugar cookies just before Christmas. We finished the cookies but had a bunch of colored frosting leftover. Tired of not having some of my glass dishes and measuring cups, I decided to bake some scratch cupcakes and use up some of this frosting. I mixed the red, yellow and white to make a salmon color and used the chocolate frosting as is. 

I didn't have enough cupcakes to use the green frosting. I may freeze that to use for St. Patrick's Day or Easter goodies. We've been enjoying the cupcakes, I have more of my glass dishes ready for use again, and we didn't allow the frosting to linger long enough to grow mold or spoil.

We de-decked the halls Monday evening. I used more of the treats as part of our snack-y dinner just before putting decorations away. I had some pot stickers in the freezer leftover from New Year's Eve, as well as peppermint bark, holiday cookies, and spiced nuts to add to the buffet. I used a can of biscuit dough that had passed it's sell-by date to make broccoli, chicken, and cheese mini pocket sandwiches. A large bag of frozen broccoli was nearly empty, leaving a large pile (close to a half-cup) of broccoli bits at the bottom of the bag. Those bits (plus a couple of chopped florets from a new bag) provided the broccoli for the sandwiches. I try to use all of what's in a bag of frozen vegetables, even the small bits that don't make a forkful on their own. The "cocktail" sausages are 2 all-beef hotdogs cut into quarters, leftover from last summer's cook-outs (kept in the freezer, of course). We had about 2 cups of cola at the bottom of the 2-liter bottle, leftover from our tree decorating party in December. So that went on the table, too. To round out the buffet, I added some carrot sticks, orange quarters, and pepperoni-pineapple mini kabobs.

What's left? Besides the green frosting, we still have some Christmas cookies, spiced nuts, Christmas candy, a half-dozen pot stickers, and about 1 cup of cola that I'll be repurposing in the coming weeks. 

So, this has been my effort to waste not, so that we will want not.

Thursday, January 20, 2022

My New Pajama Pants (and a little trick to make the fabric layout work with less fabric)

I often don't buy the full amount of fabric that a pattern suggests. I'm on the petite side, so I always have to alter patterns to fit my shorter stature. Hence needing less fabric than called for. So, I asked my daughter to order 2 yards of flannel for my new pajama pants (the pattern called for 2 3/8 yards).

Even after shortening the pattern pieces for my shorter legs, I still spent a good 20 minutes trying to make the pattern pieces fit the fabric to no avail. Then I had a thought. This is an all-over pattern that looks good sideways as well as longitudinally, and it has no nap. 

I opened up the fabric, folded it sideways, and voila, the pattern pieces fit just fine.

Anyway, this solved the problem and left me with about 11 inches of additional fabric. I suppose I could have requested even less fabric than the 2 yards.

My question now -- what would you do with a strip of flannel fabric 11 inches by 42 inches?

By the way, turning the fabric sideways worked for my fabric because I'm not very tall. After shortening the pattern to fit my legs, I had not quite an inch leeway in the length. The pattern pieces were about 40 inches from the top of the waist to the bottom of the leg. This would not work as well for someone needing longer pant legs.

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