Wild Sheep, Wingmen, and Dueling Detectives [book reviews]

I recently read two novels translated into English, a book written in English that attempts to translate "boy world" into ideas parents can understand, and an English mystery with some parallels to the Swedish mystery I'd just read. A Wild Sheep Chase by Haruki Murakami, translated from Japanese by Alfred Birnbaum A young man finds … Continue reading Wild Sheep, Wingmen, and Dueling Detectives [book reviews]

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Trader Joe’s Thai Yellow Curry Sauce review

Executive Summary: This is a C+ sauce.  If you don't have time to make your own, this is better than no curry sauce at all.  The flavor is not fabulous, probably because it's made with a lot of the wrong ingredients. My 14-year-old asked me to buy this sauce as a quick meal option, now that … Continue reading Trader Joe’s Thai Yellow Curry Sauce review

Magic Breakfast Burrito + 70 Things to Cook in Cast Iron

We've had two cast iron skillets in our home for years, and we use at least one of them almost every day.  This year, we inherited three more!  That's what inspired me to collect a whole bunch of recipes for foods that cook well in cast iron. My friend Alison Frane (of Chickicheesinara Sauce fame) offered … Continue reading Magic Breakfast Burrito + 70 Things to Cook in Cast Iron

A Certified Wildlife Habitat in an Urban Churchyard

"Wildlife" sounds like something that lives out in the wild, right?  We picture wildlife in the jungle, in the desert, or at least deep enough into the forest that it can't hear motors. But wild animals live in almost every acre of Earth's surface.  Squirrels are wildlife.  Ladybugs, ants, and even pigeons are wildlife.  Leopards … Continue reading A Certified Wildlife Habitat in an Urban Churchyard

Tomatillo Salsa and 3 Flavors of Roasted Tomatoes

It's been a great summer for tomatoes here in western Pennsylvania!  Our CSA farm share brought us 27 tomatoes and 18 tomatillos last week, and 38 tomatoes two weeks ago.  We expect to get more tomatoes today! We learned several years ago that roasting in seasoned oil makes tomatoes taste great, take up less space, … Continue reading Tomatillo Salsa and 3 Flavors of Roasted Tomatoes

Princess X and The Husband’s Secret Love Languages [book reviews]

Here's a sprightly introduction to my reviews of the books I read in the past month. The Husband's Secret by Liane Moriarty There are multiple husbands with multiple secrets in this twisty story, which is sort of a mystery but also an excellent "modern realistic fiction" novel with lots of complex characters. Cecilia finds a … Continue reading Princess X and The Husband’s Secret Love Languages [book reviews]

Go Green in 2018: Can You Afford to Buy Greener Products?

Twenty years ago, I saw a catalog filled with practical household products that were better for the environment than the stuff we'd been using: laundry and dish and cleaning products made from plants and natural minerals, paper products made from recycled paper, tampons and cloth towels made from organic cotton.  I was excited!  But I'd … Continue reading Go Green in 2018: Can You Afford to Buy Greener Products?