Welcome to MY ADVENTURE OF DAILY LIFE. I have long since wanted and been encouraged to document the plethora of items I work on, learn, and in general tinker with. I travel and experience new things far and wide and love to share what I gain from them. Here I am sharing with you not just the amazing but the every day as well. They may not fall under the category of "daring adventure" but I am usually having a blast doing them. Enjoy!
We are quickly approaching the time where somebody is no longer a Senior Chief in the Navy. It's time for a new era of civilian life for all of us but I have a feeling that some habits are here to stay. One is the need for order especially when it comes to tools. In engineering, it may be a sink or float situation if they don't know exactly where those tools are. The kids that he taught all knew how important it was to make sure every tool was in it's place or there would be hell to pay.
Here soon it will be just he and his Dad working on things but that doesn't mean that this need for order dissipates. When we purchased some MREs still in their cans, we took out the foam inserts from the top and filled that area with bags of rice instead. Then he used the foam inserts to make tool box organizers!
Just like the pictures show he traced each tool and then cut out the insert.
He even used some round foam to really get creative!
Who says Senior Chiefs can't be crafty?
Once we get out to the country we have a multitude of heating options at our disposal. We have a natural gas well that we can draw from. We have 52 acres of trees that will always need managing and broad backs with strong arms a plenty. Last to be used would be electric heat, but thankfully since the house is small, it wouldn't be unaffordable. In the city, things are a bit different. The primary heat source is a heat pump which I do not care for. Our chimney liner, in it's advanced age has separated from the outside and that makes the fireplace unusable as a heat source in times of crisis. We have a generator if the electric goes out but that's loud and certainly not a suitable option for long term. So what's a person to do in the city if the lights go out? I watched the video above a few month ago and shared it on Facebook. At the time I had a lot of other projects going on and thought I would work on this when it got colder. Turns out this is the coldest winter in a long time! A friend of mine, Darlene, had the chance to try making one and she used mostly the same materials. At first she was very pleased but the base that she used got very hot and caused the oils in the tea lights to catch fire. So she went back to drawing board. Here is my heater I made by reading her posts and doing other internet research:
We start with a base which I am using a tile from Lowe's ($.62)
Then I put down my bricks that I got from a trash/rubble pile at a construction site ($0) and placed the votive candles in the center (12pk - $6.50). You will notice that I have chosen the ones already in glass containers to contain the melted candle and also help disperse heat. Once we start raising our own meat, I can reuse these glass candle holders to make tallow candles and make this resource sustainable.
Then I place the first pot over the lit candles.
You want to trap the heat in the first pot so I placed a quarter over the hole ($.25).
Then place the larger pot over the smaller.
NOTE: Never never never leave any candle or open flame unattended! I have pot holders here in case I need to move the hot pots and a heavy blanket on hand in case I have to smother a flame in a hurry. Do not use water since the candles have oil in them.
I am very surprised at how effective this little heater is! I have it on an old chest of drawers so the dogs can't knock it over or get it to. I haven't measured the warmth yet and my office is not big but it's doing the trick and I feel warm on a cold winter's day for a $6.84 investment.
As you may have guessed I delight in learning the old fashioned way of doing things. My most recent skill that's easy to do and very rewarding is poping popcorn on the stove. Most folks have issues with the first kernals burning before the last kernal pops but I didn't experience any burning with this method. Once we move to Kentucky and we have a wood stove for heat, it will be interesting to see how the temperatures differ and how they affect the popping.
In the meantime, this method on the stove that I picked up from Simply Recipes works awesome! The only thing I changed was I use Light Olive Oil or Coconut Oil, and I top mine with Celtic Sea Salt and Garlic Powder.
- 3 Tbsp canola, peanut or grapeseed oil (high smoke point oil)
- 1/3 cup of high quality popcorn kernels
- 1 3-quart covered saucepan
- 2 Tbsp or more (to taste) of butter
- Salt to taste
1 Heat the oil in a 3-quart saucepan on medium high heat.
2 Put 3 or 4 popcorn kernels into the oil and cover the pan.
3 When the kernels pop, add the rest of the 1/3 cup of popcorn kernels in an even layer. Cover, remove from heat and count 30 seconds. (Count out loud; it's fun to do with kids.) This method first heats the oil to the right temperature, then waiting 30 seconds brings all of the other kernels to a near-popping temperature so that when they are put back on the heat, they all pop at about the same time.
4 Return the pan to the heat. The popcorn should begin popping soon, and all at once. Once the popping starts in earnest, gently shake the pan by moving it back and forth over the burner. Try to keep the lid slightly ajar to let the steam from the popcorn release (the popcorn will be drier and crisper). Once the popping slows to several seconds between pops, remove the pan from the heat, remove the lid, and dump the popcorn immediately into a wide bowl.
With this technique, nearly all of the kernels pop (I counted 4 unpopped kernels in my last batch), and nothing burns.
5 If you are adding butter, you can easily melt it by placing the butter in the now empty, but hot pan.
6 Salt to taste.
Additional tips: From their comments section
a If you add salt to the oil in the pan before popping, when the popcorn pops, the salt will be well distributed throughout the popcorn.
b Fun toppings for the popcorn - Spanish smoked paprika, nutritional yeast, cayenne powder, chili pepper, curry powder, cumin, grated Parmesan cheese.