So far this new year I have created a new day timer for my binder completely from household materials (read: CHEAP). I was scandalized that the trademark holder wants $10 each for the calendar, appointment book, address book, and business card index elements. I admit my version looks pretty tacky, rather like a kindergartener's idea of a daily appointment book, and certainly qualifies as an entry in someone's cruel You Know You're a Redneck If You. . . make your own daytimer.
On the flip side, the Spicy Husband has been constructing a storage closet in our otherwise useless "back room" (there is simply no other way of referring to it) which is a marvel of engineering, design and his damn good building skills.
Some time ago I had asked, "Honey, when you get time, will you put up some shelves in the back room for me? I don't have any room for all the gadgets, gewgaws, containers of containers, small appliances and operating manuals, backup small appliances and their operating manuals, and cleaning products that I use daily to make your life a heaven on earth."
I was thinking, hope he just slaps up a few good-sized shelves that I can camouflage with the folding screen (read: CHEAP). Instead, he has built a closet that is a work of art -- framed to perfection, drywalled and mudded, ready for paint and finishing touches. I bug him daily by reminding him that I don't need anything special and that he's spending way too much time and effort on this. His response is always patient and annoyed: "When I do something, I do it right. I don't do things halfway."
Only he didn't say, half-way. But you know what I mean. I respect this ethic of my husband, and want to emulate it.
So this is one of the expectations for 2012 for the Spicy Cook:
1. Do things right, the first time, and not half way.
Foodwise, it has been a great year thus far. We finally made our old favorites, Orange Coconut Macaroons, and just recently perfected the Overnight bread recipes for rye and Mediterranean and onion, featuring portions of whole grain flour. Crabby Egg Casserole and bleu cheese dip and veggies are great make-aheads for brunch or a late supper after a long day of hiking or God willing, skiing. I'm adding these to the User Friendly recipe page -- let me know if you like them!