25 December 2005

Peace on Earth

21 December 2005

Death Sentence

Cheney is dancing in the Whitehouse as hundreds of thousands of America's poor will now be cut off from access to medical care. How many will suffer? How many will die? All so that the very rich in our country can enjoy a larger tax refund??

40 Billion dollars - most of which will to go the very, very rich.

Congratulations Cheney. You've deliberately sentenced Americans to death.

15 December 2005

No-Bake Sculpting Dough

This dries overnight. No heating fuel necessary.

2 cups baking soda
1 cup cornstarch
1 1/4 cups cold water

Mix baking soda, water, and cornstarch in cooking pan; stir constantly over medium heat for about 3 or 4 minutes until mixture thickens to a moist mashed potato consistency.

Remove from heat, scrape into ceramic bowl, and cover with a damp cloth until cool.

Knead until smooth.

Sculpt, tool, and shape . To store unused dough, wrap in plastic wrap, or Ziploc bag (be sure to squeeze as much of the air out as you can).

Dry any sculpted shapes overnight on a non-porous surface (like a ceramic dish), then paint with tempera or acrylic paints.

Coat with polyurethane or shellac or nail polish.

14 December 2005

Homemade Clay Ornaments

It might be too late this year, but consider getting crafty for next season. Homemade ornaments made from clay, sell. Especially if they're detailed, and painted in bright colors.

You can often find flour for sale pretty cheap this time of year, and just after Christmas. It will keep till next year for projects such as this.

For many folks, this may not be a viable suggestion, because it takes energy - heating fuel to do this. Your oven will be on at 250 ° for about 2 hours. There is another recipe for cold clay, and I will post that tomorrow.

Homemade Clay

4 cups flour
1 1/2 cups water
1 cup salt
1 teaspoon alum (can be found in the spice shelves at your grocer's)

Mix all 4 ingredients in a large bowl. Add tsps of water if necessary to make dough workable. In case you wish to color the dough before baking, you can divide it, and work in some food coloring to the different pieces. But if you're going to paint the dough, anyway, there's no need to dye it.

To manipulate the dough, you can use all sorts of instruments in the house: knives, rollers, cookie cutters, ice pick, pins, etc. Treat the dough as you would any clay you were molding.

Make sure the dough is no more than 1/2 inch thick, and don't forget to make a small hole for the ornament's hanger.

Bake at 250° for 30 minutes, then turn pieces over, carefully, and bake another 70 to 90 minutes. (practice with some pieces to see how your oven works.)

It will be okay to sand edges or any imperfections...using some fine grain sandpaper.

then you can paint and after the paint's dry - coat with shellac other protectant (even nail polish works!)

11 December 2005


One good thing about being poor - it's inexpensive.

09 December 2005

Potato Pancakes

Potatoes are about the cheapest staple out there, so I am always looking for a new way to cook them up:

5 potatoes, peeled and shredded
2 eggs, beaten
1 onion, finely chopped
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
¼ tsp vanilla
salt and pepper to taste
3 tablespoons oil for frying

1. In a large bowl, stir together potatoes, eggs, onion, flour, salt and pepper.
2. In a large skillet, heat oil over medium high heat.
3. Drop large spoonfuls of the potato batter into the skillet and flatten cakes slightly with a spatula.
4. Cook for about 4 minutes on each side, until golden brown. Serve immediately.

If you can afford it, fry up one link of sausage per serving.