Friday, August 20, 2010

Retail Therapy

Yesterday morning found me feeling pale azure, so I decided lift my spirits with some retail therapy.  I left the house with visions of clothing and shoes dancing in my head.  I came home with stuff for the kitchen.

I found some nifty glassware at the dollar store.  Though I don't really need martini glasses, I figured I could find other uses for the two pictured below.  Berries, trail mix, yogurt, olives.  The possibilities are endless.  At fifty cents each I figured I'd find some use for them.  I also found a spouted jar that I'm going to use for storing homemade salad dressing.  I'm hoping it pours more easily than the assortment of jars I'm currently using.  If not, it was only a dollar, and I'm sure I can find other uses for it. 

While at the dollar store I also found cheap washcloths.  I was inspired by Meghan's paper-free kitchen, so I grabbed ten washcloths to use instead of paper towels.  I'll still have paper towels on hand.  Our 18-year-old cat is a barfer.  I can't imagine cleaning up after her then cleaning the cloths.  Yuck.  Dealing with that mess once is enough.

Of course, once I had the cloths I needed something to keep them in.  As I was headed downtown anyway, I stopped at the kitchen store and found this loaf pan.  It's just the right size for the cloths, and it fits on my window sill.  I'm hoping if they're handy I'll remember to use cloths instead of paper towels.  And if I don't remember, I have a new loaf pan.

My real purpose for heading downtown, besides browsing the clothing and shoe stores, was my weekly stop at BramblesOnce I tried the maple-smoked salt from the Vancouver Island Salt Co I had to try their sea salt too.  I grabbed a bag of that and cruised the aisles for other goodies.  I was planning a beet salad for dinner.  My recipe called for sherry vinegar, but I didn't have any and didn't expect to find any.  Once again Brambles exceeded my expectations with BC sherry vinegar.

This stuff is amazing. It's from the Okanagan Vinegar Brewery. I'd never gotten into specialty vinegar, as I figured I'd use it once then it would collect dust and take up valuable kitchen space.  Not going to happen with this vinegar.  I had it on my salad last night; now I'm looking for other uses for it - besides licking it drop by delicious drop from my fingers. It's a bit pricey at $16 a bottle, but oh so worth it.  I used just over a quarter of what the recipe called for and I could have used even less.  It's that flavourful.  

As you can see,  I didn't buy anything I intended to buy, but my intentions were met nonetheless.  No shoes, no clothes but I certainly felt better.  Next time you see me I may be wearing a skirt of dollar store wash cloths and loaf pans on my feet.  I'll be unfashionable, but I'm happy!


  1. "Our 18-year-old cat is a barfer."?!?!?! If anyone in my household were described as a barfer, I would have more than paper towels for them- they'd be in their own place :)

  2. Meghan you make me laugh! I'm sure Wednesday would love having her own place, complete with staff to wait on her hand and foot. Oh, wait, she already has that. Hubby and are are but servants in HER home.

    Seriously, she hasn't always been a barfer, well not a regular barfer anyway. She's upped the frequency in the last year, but after 17 years we're attached to her, so we deal with it. We clean up and keep her comfortable. She is a very senior citizen after all. Hope someone treats me that well when I'm 90.

  3. OK, Laurie, this madness must stop. I just bought a fancy new vinegar too! Mine is a pomegranate balsamic blend of some sort, and I haven't tried it yet. But I bought it after hearing its praises sung at my local natural foods store, and I love products that come with personal recommendations (even if they are from the shop workers!).

  4. Rosiecat, that is too funny. Pomegranate balsamic. Intriguing. After my success with sherry vinegar I may just branch out into other varieties. I'll keep my eyes open for pomegranate blend. In the mean time tonight's salad will be amaranth leaves, grape leaves, green onion, blueberries, olive oil, sea salt and sherry vinegar. (Gotta love having a friend with a vineyard. Fresh grape leaves are very tasty.)

  5. Hi Laurie
    "....amaranth leaves...." who's your dealer? I mean, where can I buy some? I love amaranth grain in porridge, but I never knew about the leaves.... would the leaves happen to come from your local Farmers Market?


  6. Hi Annonymouse. Good to see you back here again! I'm growing my own amaranth out at Sleeping Cougar Acres. As I go right by your place on my way there, I'll drop some off for you. The leaves wilt immediately after picking, but if you remove them from the stems and soak in cold water they perk right up. I then drain and dry them in my colander. They'll keep in the fridge without wilting for up to 3 days after that, or you can use them right away.


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