Monday, August 30, 2021

Sunday Treats and A New Start on Monday

On Sunday, a discussion between my daughter and me about plant based foods (we were eating a salad for lunch), and how sugar is also a plant based food ("Oh, and remember the time when I grew sugarcane in the garden from a piece that had been thrown over the garden wall by presumably the neighbors next door?") although it has a bad reputation, and the difference between refined sugar and other less refined plant based sweeteners such as fruit juice and corn syrup and molasses, led to this:

Chewy Oatmeal Molasses Cookies

Which led to this:

Pastries and Meat-Filled Kufta


The minute my daughter mentioned molasses, I mentioned molasses cookies!  Then, she looked up a recipe!  She did most of the work, the measuring, the mixing, and forming the balls of dough; I took down the jar of molasses, the container of oatmeal, the shortening, and lined the baking sheets with parchment paper!  She turned on the oven and I brought in a stand fan to keep in the kitchen, in addition to the table fan on the counter.  Did I mention that the temperature was in the mid 90s and I have no central air conditioning?   

She made the balls of dough a bit bigger than the recipe said and we found out why the smaller size was recommended!  The cookies spread out a lot and ran into each other, making one big sheet cookie!  We were able to cut around the cookies to separate them; some were more or less round, the rest were squares!

Once they had cooled a bit, I took a small plate of cookies over to neighbor S, who, in return, gave me more kufta (meat-filled ones, this time) that her mother had made and pastries her mother and sister-in-law had made!  She told me the name of the pastries, but, I have forgotten what they are called.  The round, rolled up ones were what her sister-in-law made and they have a pumpkin jam filling.  

Daughter and I enjoyed cookies and pastries with our tea in the evening!

Later in the evening, I watered the back yard.  I was greeted by Bun Bun, who had managed to make his way into the garden, even after M and I had blocked some of the entrances!  I told him he did not belong in my garden and chased him off - he squeezed himself through the narrow opening between the gate and the gate post that we had not blocked.  I tried to block it with a few pieces of wood that I had in the garage and went in.  A little later, I looked outside and there was Bun Bun, happily stretched out on a patch of grass near the back door, looking as me with a very smug look on his face!  Round 1 to Bun Bun!  LOL!

On Sunday, I was grateful for:

- Freshly baked cookies!
- Being able to take some cookies over to S
- Receiving more treats in return!
- Baking with my daughter
- Having enough garden produce to share with a hungry Bun Bun

Sunday's joyful activity was enjoying some freshly baked cookies.

Today (Monday), I am determined to get back on track with my daily cleaning routines.  Remember those?  They sort of fell by the way side after the sciatica pains, but, now, I am over that and need to get back to regular cleaning.  I couldn't dust in the morning, today, because my daughter was having back to back work meetings online (she sits at the dining table to do her meetings because the internet signal is better there than in her room), but, I dusted the living room and the dining area afterwards, when she went back to her room to do the rest of her work.  That's when I noticed that there is an empty space of about 6 inches on one of the shelves in the bookcase in the living room!  I have at least two more books on that shelf which can be decluttered after I have re-read them.  After I dusted, I cut a few branches from the pomegranate tree to place in a vase to brighten up the room.  

A Vase of Pomegranate Leaves

The doily is one that my mother crocheted; the vase is part of my blue and white collection.  

Monday's To Do List:

- Dust (living room and dining area)
- Clean the fridge
- Take the trash cans to the curb
- Water the front garden
- Dust the dressing table

Today, I am grateful for:

- Cooler temperatures (highs only in the mid 80s)
- My daughter making me coffee in the morning
- Ripe fresh mangoes
- Electricity to run the appliances
- Rescue inhalers (yes, the asthma acted up, again)

Today's joyful activity will be spending some time relaxing in the garden. 

 How was your Monday?  What are your plans for the rest of the week?


August Decluttering Challenge: 

8/1 - 1 pair gardening gloves

8/2 - non-working heating pad

8/3 - old purse/handbag

8/4 - 1 computer CD containing a report

8/5 - 1 plastic lid that cracked and broke in two

8/6 - 1 hooded sweatshirt (received a new one to replace it)

8/7 - old make-up I no longer use

8/8 - 6 plastic laundry detergent scoops (I use powdered laundry detergent; each new box comes with its own scoop; I don't need to keep the old ones, but, it seems such a waste to toss them in the recycling bin)

8/9 - 1 sponge paint brush (unused, but, so old, the sponge is no longer spongey!)
         1 plastic food container

8/10 - 1 blouse (given to daughter); will be donated as she decided it didn't fit her properly

8/11 - 1 broken clothes hanger
          3 bras

8/12 - 2 Zucchini!  LOL!  Eileen informed me that the zucchini don't count!

8/13 - Daughter's old artwork: A poster 

8/14 - Daughter's old artwork: A painting

8/15 - 1 long dress (given to daughter) - she had urged me to buy it for myself one year for all of $1, but, I didn't wear it.  She, on the other hand, loves it!  It looks much better on her than on me! 

8/16 - 1 coffee mug 

8/17 - A book on cake decorating

8/18 - 1 bottle of perfume spray (an "our version of a famous perfume" that someone gave which doesn't smell good to me)

8/19  - 1 blouse (to be donated)

8/20 - 1 pair of slippers/flip flops (unworn; to be donated)

8/21 - an old digital camera that I could never figure out how to use!

8/22 - 1 small plastic bucket

8/23 - 2 plastic food storage containers

8/24 - 1 craft book on wreath making

8/25 - 1 cook book

8/26 - 1 felt hat (part of a dance costume from when daughter took dance classes)

8/27 - 1 participation medal daughter received at school  

8/28 - 1 knit tunic (something that was given to me, but, doesn't suit me!)

8/29 - More old make-up (small eye shadow kit)

8/30 - 5 hair bands with bows


  1. You are a braver soul than I, our oven is out of commission from June-Sept. I will not turn it on until late September, it's just much too hot. Those cookies look good I must admit, but I just couldn't do it, especially without central air. Like I said, you are braver than I. Speaking of plant-based foods we went grocery shopping today and bought some plant-based breakfast sandwiches. We've never tried them before so we are eager to see how they taste. Bun Bun knows you're bark is worse than your bite, that's why he keeps coming back. LOL Denise

    1. I usually don't bake in the summer, but, there's always an exception to the rule! :D It was hot in the family room before we turned on the oven and then, when we moved from the kitchen to the family room, that same hot room felt so much cooler! :D If worse came to worst, we could have retreated to my bedroom and turned the small window a/c unit on. I've tried some plant based sausages and "shrimp" in restaurants and they've been good; hope you like the breakfast sandwiches. Ha, ha, yes, I think Bun Bun has me all figured out! :D Hope you are safe and not impacted by hurricane Ida!

  2. Since the pandemic started, I have not really worn makeup at all - my face gets hot and sweaty under a mask, and nobody can see my lipstick. Maybe I should dig out my makeup nag and have a serious declutter. Thanks for the reminder. It is damp and dismal here today. But our determination to lose weight means I cant make any cookies or cakes this week.

    1. Like you, I hardly ever wear make up, these days, and the experts say to get rid of anything over 6 months old (some say over 3 months old) and all my stuff is at least 18 months old! Sorry you can't bake any cakes or cookies, but, maybe you can bake a healthier item. :)

  3. A good reminder to return to a routine of tidying & cleaning. Don't you find that summer makes us toss out any routine in favour of the "summer living" vibe? Oh BunBun you naughty rabbit! Umm molasses cookies, it's been ages since I've had one of those.

    1. Many people do spring cleaning, but, I've noticed that I like to do fall, I mean, Autumn (:D) cleaning! Bun Bun is definitely a rascal! But, he's cute! :D The molasses cookies are delicious and a bit spicy from the ground ginger in it. :)

  4. I like how your cookies magically turned into meat pastries. :)

  5. I remember seeing sugar cane being pressed in Ecuador. I often wonder how human beings learned to use the various plants that grow on our planet and are almost impossible to live without if for example you are a coffee or chocolate lover!
    We could use a rabbit or two to keep our grass down, but haven't seen one for a couple of years. We did have a visit from a local dog that jumps his fence. He heard a chipmunk in the downspout and proceeded to attack it, scrunching it up, but by some miracle, when DH cut off and dismantled the bottom, the chipmunk was safe and unharmed inside in an unaffected area between two flattened parts!

    1. I, too, wonder how people found out, but, I suppose, it was through trial and error and observing what other animals ate.
      Ha, ha, shall I pack off Bun Bun and the gang over to you? :D
      Oh, the naughty dog! I'm glad your husband was able to remove the damaged part and the chipmunk was safe. I hope the owners of the dog will help pay for the damaged downspout to be replaced!

  6. Freshly baked cookies are always a joy!
    Daily cleaning routine is a foreign concept here. I need to establish one immediately or just continue with my freezer meals challenge. Yep, I think I will just cook in September.

    1. Freshly baked cookies are a danger to our waistlines! :D

      I think you are right to choose to cook in September! I am not sure how well I will follow my own cleaning routines, but, I am determined to at least try! Today, I vacuumed a bit more. I can't vacuum for more than 15 mins., but, I got the living room dining area, kitchen, hallway, and part of the family room done. Next up are the bedrooms and the bathrooms (tomorrow, maybe).

  7. Your molasses cookies look very good. With oatmeal? I like that idea so as to add some health benefits to the cookie.
    The doily your mother made is very pretty.
    That's great that you are able to get back to your regular cleaning routine. You've been doing a lot this month in that area.

    1. Thank you, Debra. Yes, the oatmeal boosts the nutrition factor! :D Next time, daughter says she will add some cashews or walnuts.
      I like to have my mother's crochet out - there is a small table covering she made on the dining table, too. I also have more doilies; I can't use them all, but, I can't get rid of them, either!
      Yes, I am getting back to my cleaning routines. I do what I can while I'm motivated. Today, I vacuumed part of the house. I am procrastinating on cleaning my bedroom, though! :D

  8. The cookies looks so good but they are off the menu here ... in every nutrition topic the advice is to eliminate added sugars from our diets!

    Your mum's doilies are beautiful - a talented lady.

    Well done on getting back to your cleaning routine. I hope you don't overdo it.

    1. You have more will power than I do, when it comes to cooking and sweets, Eileen. :)

      Thank you; my mother picked up crochet in her early 50s, but, went on to make several table covers, clothing items, and doilies. I've no idea what to do with them all, but, don't want to give any of them away, either!

      I'm taking baby steps when it comes to the cleaning. I did the vacuuming over 3 days; 20 minutes or so each session. :)

    2. I used to have a sweet tooth with absolutely no will power at all. That's changed as I've got older and since I stopped adding sugar to my coffee, I haven't enjoyed sweet things at all. It's strange how your tastes change, isn't it? Since I've stopped adding sugar the joint pains have eased off a little so that's another incentive for me. I still need chocolate occasionally though ... it's essential! 😂

    3. I've cut down on the amount of sugar I add to my tea (halved it) and, just the other day, I tried a candy I used to love and found I didn't much care for it! But, I agree with you on the chocolate! And ice cream on the days when the temperature is near 100F! :D


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