Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Clothes dryers, oranges, and oatmeal

I love oranges. I say this only because I just found a bagful that I bought, and I was afraid they'd gone over. I tried one, and it was lovely, if messy. I think oranges could be a metaphor for life: sometimes sweet and juicy, sometimes dry and bitter, often messy. Enough of that.

I started making oatmeal in the morning this week. On Sunday, we had the Great St. Valentine's Day Oatmeal Massacree and Debacle, when I tried cooking it entirely in milk, and the milk scorched almost immediately. It also left a nasty layer of scorched milk baked to the bottom of the saucepan. I worked on that sucker on and off all day and got most of it off. My Sweet Babboo got the last bit. My hero!

I mentioned it to someone that day in Meeting, and he told me that he cooks it with less than the 2:1 water to oatmeal ratio, then makes up the difference with milk. I tried that, and it does makes a very creamy pot of oatmeal. I use 3 cups of water and add 1 cup of milk. What occurred to me in the process was that it took a lot less time than I thought it would. In fact, I would even venture to say that it doesn't take much longer than making the instant stuff from the packets.

This is becoming true of a lot of the things I haven't done because it would take "too long."  I made homemade pizza on Sunday afternoon, and the crust part really didn't take that long--and kneading it was particularly satisfying--so much so that I am going to start baking bread again.

Today's main project, however, will be laundry. Our dryer gave up the ghost last weekend, and a visit from Bob the repairman revealed that there would be no resurrection. We bought it used, and apparently it was pretty old then. It would cost too much to repair, so we're in the market for a new dryer.

My Sweet Babboo thinks it would be very simple to haul the laundry through two feet of snow to the clothesline at the back of the yard. Granted, there are paths trampled for Sheila, but they are circuitous, and then there's the issue of the clothes freezing on the line and the amount of laundry in proportion to the amount of space on the clothesline/number of clothespins...well. You know.

Sweet Babboo counters that people managed it for ages without clothes dryers. Good for them. It's also easier for one to say that when one is not the person who does the laundry on a regular basis. I will be washing batches of clothes, bagging them, and taking them to the laundromat on Market Street to use the dryers there.

Actually, I could start some bread, come to think of it....

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