Saturday, July 3, 2021

Saturday: Freezer Inventory and July Grocery Shopping, Part 1


Rose and Shadows

My zucchini harvest picture is not loading from my phone to the computer, and my daughter put away the groceries before I could take a picture, so I will go with a picture I took the other day of one of the roses!  Yesterday (Friday), when M was here, I commented on the red roses and he said he had been feeding them with some type of specially blended rose fertilizer!  Oh!  So that's the secret to their flowering so nicely!  

Today, I finished doing my freezer inventory, sorting through the items stored on the freezer door shelves.  There are five shelves.  I took items out of each shelf, washed the shelves (not sure when that was done, last), and put things back.  I store flour, red rice, items I like to have easy access to when cooking (such as green chillies and pandan leaves), in the door shelves.  I am blessed to have a freezer, to have access to electricity to run it, to be able to afford the electricity needed to run it, and to be able to have food in the freezer!

**** Taking a break to reminisce****

When I was a child (late 50s, early 60s), we had a small fridge with a tiny little freezer compartment that was just big enough for a couple of trays of ice cubes from what I recall (they were metal trays with a metal grid and a lever to pull up to loosen the ice cubes).  We usually didn't store food in the freezer.  Not every house on our street had a fridge and I remember some of my neighbors coming to our house with a large cup or a small bowl to ask for ice cubes because someone, usually one of the children, had a fever and they wanted to place the ice on their heads to help bring the fever down.  The ice would have always been given and, if my father (a medical doctor) had been home, he would have gone to check on the person who was ill and prescribed something for the fever, as well.  That fridge (and all the other fridges in my country of birth at that time) were imported fridges; then, when there was a ban on imported goods, fridges became highly sought after.  It wasn't until the late 1960s (1969 or so) that the first fridges were manufactured by a local company.  My stepfather bought one and it was run on kerosene!  The fire was lit at the back and we had to make sure the tank was topped up every week or so.  

****Back to regular blogging!****

In the afternoon, my daughter and I drove to pick up the groceries we had ordered.  I drove and she came along for the ride.  Then, while I waited for the groceries to be brought out, I asked daughter to buy us some ice cream from the ice cream shop next to the grocery store - it offers 31 flavors of ice cream, but, I knew which flavor I wanted (mocha with almonds and a swirl of chocolate sauce) - as a treat!

The items we bought included:

3+ lb. package chicken breast halves @ $.99/lb = $3.35
1/2 gal. half and half = $3.99
3 lb. bag yellow onions = $2.99
1 lb. bag spring greens salad mix = $4.49 (sells for $1.99 at the Armenian store, but, they don't do curbside pick up)
1 iceberg lettuce = $1.49
2 lb. bag sugar snap peas = $4.99*
1 small seedless watermelon = $3.99
3 mangoes @$1 = $3.00
3 bananas @$64/lb. = $0.62
red grapes @$.99/lb = $1.29
2 x 2lb. containers strawberries @ $2.99 = $5.98

*Store substitute for the 16 oz. bag of store brand sugar snap peas we ordered, as they were out of it.  They substituted a 32 oz. bag for the same price!  

The total for groceries came to $36.18.

The one non-grocery item we bought was a container of shampoo for $6.49.  With the shampoo and tax on it, the total came to $43.20.

The package of chicken breast halves contained four pieces.  I pan sauteed them, with some onions and tomatoes, on the stove top, for dinner.  I also cooked a packet of Spanish rice mix that friend R had given me and made a zucchini salad to go with the chicken.  The leftover chicken will be eaten over the next several days, sliced and added to salads for lunch or with rice or pasta for dinner.  

Today, I am grateful for:

- Having a freezer, the electricity to run it, and the blessing of being able to fill that freezer with food
- Being able to order groceries online and pick up curbside
- Being able to drive to the store and back
- Daughter putting the groceries away for me
- The packet of Spanish rice mix given to me by friend R

Today's joyful activity was definitely having an ice cream treat!  

Tomorrow is 4th of July - Independence Day, here, in the US.  All week long, I have been hearing the neighbors all around me lighting fireworks!  Fireworks are illegal in my city and the fire department and other officials have been begging people to refrain from lighting any fireworks because of the danger of starting fires, especially given our high temperatures and dry conditions.  But, their pleas are falling of deaf ears and the fireworks are being lit all over the city!

Plans for tomorrow will include a little cleaning (my bathroom needs to be swept and the kitchen floor could do with being mopped, again), provided I feel up to it.  

How was your Saturday?  What are your plans for tomorrow?  Have you gone grocery shopping yet in July?   


  1. I am glad you were able to go to the store and envious of that ice cream!
    I went grocery shopping this morning, but bought very little. I was able to check out in the ten items or under line, even though I technically had 11 items (2 limes instead of just one) I. could have waited until much later in the week if I had not been out of dishwasher detergent. Though I did not need them, they had gorgeous cherries so I bought some. Sadly, other than the cherries, dishwashing detergent and some vanilla extract and 2 limes, I don't remember what I bought.

    1. Thank you, Anne. The ice cream was great, but, that was probably it for the summer!

      Sounds like you just needed to make a quick run to the grocery store. I'm sure whatever other items you bought won't go to waste. :)

  2. This post brought back memories. I can remember the first freezer we had. Like yours it was a tiny freezer box in the fridge and only ever had frozen peas in it - Mum wasn't that convinced about the safety of it all and to be honest, there wasn't room in the freezer box for much else. She didn't like the fridge much either and preferred the marble shelf in the pantry to store the perishables. I can't remember how long it took her to get used to the change.

    I hope you enjoyed your ice cream. I treated myself to a salted caramel one ... and savoured every single bit of it! I don't particularly like fireworks ever since my sister was hit in the face by one at a big event. It scared us all but she was lucky and had no permanent scarring.

    Happy 4th July to both of you xx

    1. Glad to see that there are a few others who remember those old fridges with the tiny freezer compartment! :D I'm not sure what was stored in the fridge part when I was a child other than the butter and a couple of bottles of water! The milk was delivered daily and groceries were bought daily.

      I did enjoy my ice cream! Oh, I should have taken a photo of it for the SPSH, guilty pleasures!

      Oh, my goodness, that must have been scary when your sister was hit in the face by a fireworks! Glad she didn't get permanently scarred by it! Thank you - we are having a very relaxed day, today. :)

  3. We went to the grocery store yesterday, also. We did very well in that we had a list and didn't do any impulse buying. Luckily, we had ice cream on the list. We're going to ice cream and brownies for dessert at a cookout today.

    1. Well done on keeping to your list and not impulse buying! The cookout with ice cream and brownies for dessert sounds like a wonderful way to celebrate the Fourth! They wouldn't be zucchini brownies by any chance, would they? :D

  4. I loved hearing the story about your childhood Bless. I think we always had a side by side when I was growing up, but I do remember those metal ice trays with the lever. Glad you got the freezer clean and inventoried. Good job with the groceries too. I get so annoyed when people ignore the no fireworks orders, it is SO dangerous! I hope you and your daughter have a safe and happy 4th. :)

    1. Thank you, Martha; glad you enjoyed the story about my childhood. :) I bought my first side by side when I bought this house - before that, I lived in apartments and they always came with a fridge that had a freezer on top. Yes, the fireworks are dangerous - just one spark coming down on a dried up tree or a roof can set off a fire because it is so dry out here. But, people don't seem to care.

      Hope you are having a good day, Martha, and able to celebrate without worrying about the hurricane/storm.

  5. We had a tiny fridge like that during our 3 years in Europe but we were surrounded by grocery stores! When I shopped on Friday there was hardly any produce on the shelves as the truck had only just come in. No bagged coleslaw special deal, but there were whole cabbages so I made my own and it was probably fresher.
    Happy July 4th!

    1. A smaller fridge makes sense when one is able to grocery shop more frequently. Your homemade coleslaw is definitely fresher. I hope you are having a very pleasant day, Bushlady, and enjoying your Sunday.

  6. Your recollection of your childhood reminded me of mine. My early childhood ( until 13) was spent in mountain areas of Argentina and Chile. In one place all we had was an ice chest, not electric, and the ice man would deliver large blocks of ice by horse and wagon. Another man would deliver the coal and wood the same way, for heating and the stove/oven. That was in the 60s and early 70s. We then moved to big cities in Basil, where life was more like here. But I have many fond memories of those rustic days! More recently, I also got ice cream yesterday! Have a wonderful day, Celie.

    1. Thanks for sharing your childhood memories, Celie. My mother said they used to have an ice box that was cooled with blocks of ice when she was growing up! Sounds like you lived in several countries during your childhood! Yay for getting ice cream yesterday! It must be summer with all of us getting ice cream! :D

  7. Ugh...I understand your frustration with the fireworks. My neighbor was a firefighter, and she reports people who light them. I don't think it should be legal to sell them. I see stands all along Ave, S and along Hwy 126. It makes no sense. Your rose looks spectacular! I loved the story about your dad and your freezer, too.

    1. The fireworks went on for hours, last night! I love watching fireworks and I went outside to see them for about 5 minutes, but, I was so worried about fires!

      Glad you enjoyed my childhood memories. :)

  8. Bless,
    I always appreciate my appliances! Here’s the recipe for the Cinnamon Zucchini Brownies. They’re super moist and delicious. It’s always a pleasure to revisit this recipe when zucchini is in season and plentiful.

    1/3 c margarine or butter
    1 c brown sugar (I have sometimes done 1/2 c sugar & 1/2 c brown sugar)
    1 egg
    1 1/2 t vanilla
    1/2 c chopped nuts
    1 c flour
    1 1/2 t ground cinnamon
    1/4 t baking powder
    1/2 t salt
    1/4 t nutmeg
    1 c shredded zucchini

    Mix & pour into 9x9 pan (I think mine is actually an 8x8 glass pan and it works fine!)
    350 degrees for 25 - 30 minutes
    Cool in pan & cut into bars


    1. Thank you for the recipe, Chris. I will be trying this recipe a bit later. After you mentioned zucchini brownies, I looked for a recipe online and tried one, yesterday! It made a big pan of brownies (9x13) and we need to finish that first! But, I will give your recipe a try, too. :)

  9. I enjoyed your story of the little refrigerator from your childhood and how it fit into your life at the time within your neighborhood with the sharing of ice. And the trays lol I remember those :)

    You did well with your shopping. And you got a bunch of sugar snap peas.

    I love big organized fireworks but have a real problem with people setting them off in neighborhoods. They are very dangerous and quite alarming when they go off. My neighbor is fond of throwing what sounds like and M80 right in the middle of the street and it scares the crap out of me!
    I don't understand how the sale of these are legal - I know they never were when I was growing up.
    In your area where it is illegal to set them off, do the police enforce that law? It seems like it would be overwhelming and beyond their manpower to enforce it.
    My friend's dog has an absolute meltdown from fireworks. Poor thing, it's really awful for him. Does the noise bother Dancer?

    1. Glad you enjoyed the story of the childhood fridge, Debra. :)

      No, the police rarely enforce the illegal setting off of fireworks; at least not in my neighborhood! Occasionally, I'd see a helicopter flying overhead - on the look out for fires, I suppose, but, that is about all. Dancer doesn't like the really loud bangs that some fire crackers make; the noise hurts his ears, he says, andhe is afraid that people are trying to shoot him! He hides under my bed or the sofa!


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