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Proper Cleaning of Cast Iron Cookware and Awesome Fire Starters!

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    Hey you all (I wish I could say y'all like I'm from Texas but I can't) just thought I'd share how to properly clean cast iron without taking off your seasoning from the cookware and the awesome fire starters that are the free byproduct.     First, you got to get a cast iron pan or other cookware messy.  Some Jimmy Dean sausage should do the trick. Yum!  Now add some eggs to make it better and extra messy . . . Now we got some delicious breakfast up in here! Well the family cleaned that up pretty quick.  Time to clean up this frying pan.  The key to cleaning is to use water and no soap.  Don't worry germ-a-phobes, it will be sanitized, just not with soap.  Keep reading and you'll soon find out how.  Just listen to Bruce Lee. Thanks Bruce!  Anyway using soap will take off the seasoning from your pan (which would be bad).  The seasoning is your natural non-stick coating for your cast iron pan made from baking on some greasy substance such as fat tallow or Crisc

Bring It: "More Weight"

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     One of my favorite historical figures is Giles Cory (or Corey). The defiant 80 year-old man with a checkered-past known for being accused of wizardry during the Salem Witch Trials of 1692. For those of us who are unaware of this brave man's defiant stand, I will give you a synopsis.  Giles Cory, like the other townspeople of Salem, was caught up in the frenzy that surrounded Salem in the year of 1692, and he actually was supportive of the witch trials, even when his own wife Martha was accused of witchcraft!  That is, until Giles himself was accused in April of nightly spectral appearances and tormentations to people trying to get them to sign his mysterious devilish book.  Supposedly these spectral appearances continued even after he was locked up in jail, so of course he must have been a wizard the town thought.  He knowing, of course, that he was no wizard, must have seen through the accusations by that point.  During that time of collective societal insanity, many of the a

Pulling an Adam

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             Due to my wife’s strong opinions, I often find myself in uncomfortable situations due to being at odds with my church congregation and co-workers.   Try being a medical worker who believes vaccines are harmful and many are created in a morally reprehensible way.   Not fun.   Standing up to peer pressure is a real difficulty for me and has been a weakness my whole life.   I would much rather just lay low and not attract any attention to myself (which is what I mostly do).   Anyway, as I was saying, I often find myself between polar opposites, with what my co-workers or congregation are doing and what my wife is standing up for.   Stuck between the diverging paths of the ease and comfort of going with the majority and going against the rough grain and getting splinters in undesirable places with my wife, I look at arguments as objectively as I can.   Despite my fear of peer pressure, I know that I am an intelligent person and I may be the only right person in the room.   It

The White Trash Trailer Bash

As residency ended for me in beautiful Pocatello Idaho, one of my fellow residents whom I consider a friend and good person, had a “White trash trailer party.”   Unlike most of us who were going on to buy a home, he decided to hit the road with his new wife in a travel trailer and work all over the West.   Hence the white trash trailer party.   As a side note, I’m definitely an introvert, and feel awkward and uncomfortable at most parties.   I’m not much of a mingler.   Honestly I wish I were, but I just usually don’t have much to say, or I keep my thoughts and opinions to myself around most people unless I really trust them for some reason and they allow me time to formulate my thoughts.   Anyway, we went to the white trash trailer party.   My friend, the host, was dressed up in his white lab coat, complete with a mullet wig and hillbilly, trailer trash, or red neck teeth.   The appetizers were interesting and the drinks, more medical than trailer trash I suppose.   There were urine s

Wooden Hanger Mystery

I would like to share an experience with you that I had.  I have wanted some wooden hangers for my pants for a long time now.  The plastic ones always bend and sometimes break, and make a weird crossways crease in the middle of my pants.  But I never put in the effort or the money to find and buy them.  I have just been doing without for over a year.  We were at my wife’s parents’ house.  It was very soon after we found out on ultrasound that our sixth child is a boy!  My wife’s mother gave us a very nice boy blanket for the new baby on the way.  I also noticed the hanger the blanket came on, and that it would be very nice to hang pants on.  It was made out of wood and metal.  I didn’t want to ask for it in case she wanted to keep it herself, but when I saw that her Mom was taking it out to the trash, I asked if she would mind if I could have the hanger.  She of course didn’t mind, but she had already thrown it in the outside trash.  She said she had some more and asked if I wanted the

The Miracle of the Screw

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I really like miracles, the big and the small. When I was serving a mission, a missionary named Elder Field, who was in my district in Winchester, Virginia, shared a story of a small miracle that happened to him. He was shopping at a grocery store and he really wanted some jam. He didn’t want just any jam he wanted a particular flavor, I think it was plum. It was his favorite jam. He went to the jam isle and he looked at the place where the plum jam was. They were all gone. He was disappointed, and he began walking away. But he had a feeling to go back and check the place where the plum jam was again. He went back, and looked at the empty space on the shelf. He looked way in the darkened back of the shelf and there it was, a single jar of plum jam. It was a small miracle, but I think everyone recognized the tender mercy that the Lord bestowed on one of his servants that day. He loves his children. I did not know Elder Field very well at all, because other than that story, all I remembe

Tucson Monsoon - July 2013

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Last week we had a Tucson monsoon.  I was working at the hospital.  When I came out of the hospital the monsoon was over, and only the puddles remained.  While driving home I saw two large trees were knocked completely over by the road near my house.  When I got home I was surprised to see this. This bush was perfectly healthy before the monsoon.   It grows like a weed, and looked great in the front yard (with the emphasis on the past tense).   Jami thinks it may have been hit by lightning.   Maybe it was just the wind, I don’t know.   I already lost a tree in the front yard (that was dead before we moved in), and the bush in the background has seen better days (lost some branches due to underwatering).   I didn’t want to lose another plant on my watch.   So I got resourceful like MacGyver.   I got out my always faithful rope, and asked Jami to come outside and help me.   She said, “You’re not going to tie that bush back together with that ghetto rope, are you?”   My dear wife