Good Bye to Pokeberry Hill...


Saturday, January 17, 2009

Back In Pokeberry..

Well I've been off on a bit of sidetrack, dealing with things that I'll just not discuss here-- which is fine. Life goes on, albeit sometimes it can be interrupted.

My cough is getting much better now. I sleep in my own bed and am doing OK--I can't take deep breaths really, but I'm OK. Semi-back to normal.

I was stunned in the past weeks by the cost of Rx's. I have 2 new Rx's for my asthma--one is nearly $200 per month the other is over $100 per month. Ouch!

It being January, we haven't used this year's deductible and so I am paying pretty much full price for Rx's. This is making me think a bit more about health care in general. I am a conservative for the most part--but this I think is a problem that I don't think the average American is able to deal with. I don't know how to make it jive with my beliefs in conservatism, but my belief in Christianity I think says--hey we need to help people this is not something they can do for themselves. I know that it would not take much for me to be totally unable to obtain needed drugs--and my husband has a good job with reasonably good benefits. My part time job without benefits would of course not help. I don't know what needs to be done--but something needs to be done. I wonder if folks didn't have to pay such high taxes--then could they afford health care? Maybe, maybe not.

Anyhow we have still not got the house quite ready for the rough-in inspection--however in some things we are ahead of the game, but in others still need to finish up. Money is going to be an issue. We have been pricing things we thought we'd buy now--but I think we will wait on many of them. We need to see to it we have insulation, dry wall, duct work and a furnace and that one bathroom is functioning and the kitchen sink. The rest will have to wait until we move into the house and can free up more income by not paying rent. I guess that is my assessment. It is important to get the needs done--the true needs--before the wants.

This means I need to manage the kitchen and home we are living in now without waste-- taking care with shopping and cooking and all the chores I do. I need to be more careful with menu planning and lunch packing and what we use for snacks etc.. More corners need cutting and we can't blow money. We are taking a trip to meet our Grand-daughter--I suppose it would have been more sensible not to do that--but this is a major event for us and we will do this. I am aware though that the time may come when what seems so important now will seem like too much of a luxury. This visit will be precious. We don't know do we when the next one will be?

This morning I'm pondering what to put on a 'need' grocery list--and tomorrow is the day my Grocery Game list is printed. Sometimes I still waiver--should I just cook from scratch and give up on the coupons? Well-- I do buy many non-cook able items with coupons-toilet paper, shampoo, deoderant, etc. and also many staples used in scratch cooking, flour, oil, levening, etc. I think for now I will stick with my current combination of methods for saving on groceries. Besides the Grocery Game gives me a head's up that tells me when produce or meat is at the likely lowest price too--not just the coupon items.

Currently I do some shopping at Sam's club, some at Aldi, I also use the Grocery Game to get deals at Harris Teeter, Bi-Lo and Food Lion--not all three in a week--but picking which one is best for me that week. I also use Rite Aid for my drug store.

While I was under the weather, for the past couple of months or more--I didn't do as much shopping as I normally do. Just didn't have the energy. Still I have a well stocked freezer and my pantry is holding up though I need to replenish some things.

Today I am looking at what is in my fridge--as these are the things that must be used in the most timely fashion--the fresh vegetables and fruits.

Today I have a cabbage I bought on sale-- In the future I hope to grow my own cabbages and store them in the root cellar of the new house. We shall see--It has some humidity issues I need to work out.

What can be done with a cabbage?

A cabbage can be used for soup, coleslaw, ramen salad, other salads, sauerkraut, stir frying... I usually make some slaw, some ramen noodle salad, and use the rest in a soup or stir fry. I like cabbage. :) It is usually cheap, keeps a long time, and has lots of nutrition in it. I haven't gotten into sauerkraut--but I may yet. ;)

Because our weather here is just crazy cold for the Carolina's and I can't really work outside at the new house, and because my lungs still aren't up to dealing with the construction dust and thus I can't work inside it either--I am going to delve into housework and cooking for the next three days while we are enjoying our holiday. I will work here, in the house we are renting. Hubby and #2 Son will work at the new house. #3 Son will come back soon to live with us, he will be a big help at the new house as well, but it will be possibly a few weeks before he comes.

Here I will work on the chores that I missed during the holidays and while I was ill. I hope to catch up and put the house to rights more or less while also planning good meals and a good grocery trip for tomorrow. I will also likely continue to wintersow seeds for the garden at the new house--although I cannot work on the garden itself yet--I will soon.

One thing I have truly enjoyed is the success of freezing soup in small containers and using it for work day lunches. Yesterday I took my last small container of a soup I made with spinach and chicken sausage and spaghetti sauce leftovers. Oh my it was delicious! Very nutritious with all the vegetables I put in there and also so easy to grab and go in the morning. I added to it an orange and a small container of leftover veggies and rice pilaf. A great lunch on a freezing cold day! I saved $6 by not going out to lunch--not to mention staying warm since my car still has no heat.

Today it is currently 14'. Since we moved to NC it has never been this cold. I am glad I kept my warm down coat from my Fargo days--it has been handy in the car this winter.

Global warming? okeedokee, if y'all say so.. I imagine I will have to pay for that idea whether I believe it is proven by science or not--or even by the weather!

Well I never got my shallots or garlic planted at the new house! But I have started some winter sowing containers with seeds so that is something. I will continue to do that. Sooner or later it will warm up and I will begin my garden. Probably I will still be able to get the garlic and shallots in before our trip to see the baby. Cold spells do not last here, even vicious ones like this.

Happy to be back to myself here in Pokeberry, life always has its difficulties but for the most part we manage fine.


  1. Glad you are back and taking some new meds. I hope they work for this problem. I am in agreement about healthcare and prescriptions.I don't have the answers but I keep hoping that the solution is found soon. Glad to have you back in bloggville!

  2. Thanks!
    Boy you are not kidding on the cost. I almost flipped--it cost me several hundred $$$ to just breath this month! ugh!