The Broke Blogger’s Guide: Eating Well With Potatoes

When a household is working to get their finances in order, ‘luxury’ purchases are always the first to go. But what about those of us who have long ago removed the ‘luxury’ from our budgets and are still left searching for creative ways to curb our spending? Well, we begin to seriously reconsider our purchasing priorities.

I have decided to write this post because I see quite clearly that so many people in the world (myself included) are feeling the economical effects of the previous 13 months of the pandemic and the associated restrictions. In times like these, people must reevaluate their spending and consumption patterns. This doesn’t mean that one has to change lifestyle completely. But it is worth reconsidering those convenience meals for hardier and healthier home cooked meals which may just be a bit less expensive too.

Enter the humble potato.

The potato has a long history of thousands of years and is now one of the top 3 staple foods.

Ironically, with all this potato-y goodness, this food is highly ignored as the filling food that can be the base of a variety of simple, few ingredient dishes, that it really is. In my mind, potatoes are that kind of base food that we tend to ignore because we are so accustomed to seeing it and they can feel a bit boring when compared to shelves of convenience foods in the shop.

Below listed are just a few of the many dishes that can be made with potato:

  • Boiled Potato
  • Crisps
  • Chips
  • Potato Soup
  • Smashed potato
  • Dill potatoes
  • Gnocchi
  • Potato Pasta
  • Potato Bread
  • Potato Pancake
  • Potato Salad
  • Potato Bakes (There are many varieties)
  • Cheesy Potatoes
  • Baked Potato
  • Roasted Potatoes with Spice
  • Hasselback Potatoes
  • Frittered Potatoes (or Homemade Hashbrowns)
  • Stuffed Potatoes
  • Potato Curry
  • Potato Muffins

The list is never ending, but the above recipes only call for a few ingredients. Speaking the truth, if you only have potatoes, butter or oil, salt, some herbs and maybe some cheese in your kitchen, it is possible to make at least half of the dishes on this list. This is why I like to have potatoes available in my home because it is really easy to make something, even when that feeling is that there isn’t so much food variety available in the cupboards, there is always what is needed to cook potatoes. Also, potato can be eaten raw if you are busy. I enjoy snacking on raw sliced potato when I am busy, although I admit that my husband is quite horrified by it.

Potato is also a filling and healthy food! I always eat less when I have potatoes. It is really filling for the appetite.

I would recommend, especially if you are currently living on a very small budget, to substitute some of your normal meals or ready foods which may cost more money, with potato dishes. The savings are such that it will be immediately noticeable on the food shopping bill.

Your Budget will thank you

-Mliae

15 Personality Types That Emerge in Crises

I have noticed that emergency situations magnify peoples personalities. Usually this observation has been for a smaller groups, as this is the first time a crisis of this size has affected the entire world all at the same time, in many years.

This list is how I see personalities emerging in the current crisis. I wanted to have fun with this because really, laughter is what we have and it is important.

I am not any kind of trained professional in mind or behaviour matters. This list is only from my experience and watching how people are handling the current crises differently. It has been very interesting to watch these!

These are the 15 personality types that emerge in crises:

1. The Informer

The Informer, seeks to inform. The informer will email everyone to inform about the newest happenings, news headlines and government restrictions. While the informer may wish only to share information to others who may not be aware, their excited information sharing can be perceived as a bit panicky or judge-y.

2. The Gossip

The Gossip has always been a gossip of some kind. Although those who spend time with the gossip may not be aware that this is the thing. The gossip is usually quite successful at positioning themselves as the necessary contact between people, usually by creating the image that they are the very close friend, coworker or family member & the person to go to with questions.  This is challenging in daily life. In an emergency, the gossip can be quite dangerous as gossiping (and its friend: vindictiveness) is utilised as an activity to push away the stress. The gossip may not realise themselves the damage that they cause by keeping people from the friends/family/community that is needed for support in crisis. This is a waste because often, people do recognise someone who only wants information, and usually the gossip is the one person who truly does not know the information which they desire.

3. The Worrier

The worrier is a lovely person that truly only wishes for all to be well. One can usually identify the worrier by the lack of hard surfaces or sharp edges in their homes. The worrier always has supplies for emergency in their bag and occasionally a look of forever concern on their faces. If you have a worrier of your own, I have found that both red wine and dark chocolate are good to offer to your worrier. Both have health benefits and will help your worrier to focus on something else.

4. The Normaliser  

The Normaliser, can also be called the denier (is that spelled right?). The Normaliser is a sneaky type because you only see these personality happenings in an emergency or crisis situation. The Normaliser wishes only for things to be as they usually are. Frequently, the normaliser is quite harmless and actually quite relaxing to spend time with because the normalisers make much effort to keep things as easy and comfortable as is just possible. The normaliser is the person who will create a tasty meal with what food can be found and display to others happily as if that were the plan from the beginning! It is when the normaliser finds themselves in heavy denial that situations go complicated and they turn to the denier.

5. The Bouncing Ball

The Bouncing Ball is uncomfortable to sit in silence and watch their shoes. Bouncing balls are usually highly social, happy people that have not before been in a situation where they need to just stop and ‘be’. The Bouncing Ball is recognisable by their desperate tries to make contact, to find a reason to get away from their homes – any reason will work. In their necessity to escape, the bouncing ball seems to forget the importance of keeping away from others.

6. The One Who Panics

Every social group has one person who panics. The One Who Panics always has the focus, probably because others are trying to calm their nerves. The One Who Panics is usually identifiable by their constant use of CAPITALS and !!! in texts or emails. The one who panics likes to share news stories as well, like the informer. The main difference being that the informer is sharing information. The one who panics is using the information to support their theory.

7. The Conspiracy Theorist

The Conspiracy Theorist is, in my mind, one of the more interesting personality types on this list.  The Conspiracy Theorist is very sneaky. You may not have known the conspiracy theorist was such, before the crisis occurred. Once the crisis happens, such as the one we are experiencing now with Corona, the conspiracy theorist will entertain you for many hours. There are levels to Conspiracy Theorists. Most conspiracy theorists are every day people who just have certain ideas and maybe some extra food. Then there are the extreme conspiracy theorists who we’ve watched from television.

8. The Leader

The Leader understands the current emergency/crisis situation perfectly. In any emergency, a leader personality type will make themselves known. The Leader is calm, decisive, diplomatic and well prepared. The Leader does not push themselves forward but rather quietly watches others while waiting for them to stop being foolish and see the leader for the value they are. Leader personality types (in crises) are not so common, though necessary.

9. The Introvert  

The Introvert is not bothered by the current social quarantine. Although horrified by the situation of pandemic, the introvert does feel a small feeling of relief that they are doing the correct thing and that for a time at least, others won’t think them odd. The introverts lifestyle is the social normal for everyone now and the introvert does not understand why people, such as The Bouncing Ball, cannot just be in the place.

10. The Rebel

The Rebel always asks ‘why’. The Rebel will not accept government regulations without pushing back against those. In the current crisis, the rebel is the personality type who refuses to keep isolated and makes a big noise that others should be the same.

11. The Practical One

The Practical One is the person who keeps calm, logical and that is always updating ‘the plan’. The Practical One will disagree with the One Who Panics on every level. The Practical One does not seem to talk so much, but instead spends more time with their own thoughts. The Practical One is also quite comfortable keeping away from others.

12. The Angry Bird

The Angry Bird, not to be mixed with The Rebel, also makes big noise. The Angry Bird is just angry though. Angry, not because of some line that had been crossed, but because they just are. A much planned dinner was cancelled, they got a bad hairstyle or because its Wednesday – The Angry Bird is angry for reasons we don’t understand and will share that with loud voice to everyone that can hear.

13. The Bucket-Lister

The Bucket-Lister is the most fun personality type on this list. If you are wishing for a memorable quarantine time, this is how that happens. Although the bucket-lister may not be able to do much of the travel or social tasks on their bucket list, there are certain to be some odd and highly socially unacceptable items on that last. The bucket-lister will at least once, have the thought that people are hiding behind the curtains of their homes & this will be the perfect time for making that list happen!

14. The Opportunist

The Opportunist is the one personality type that will see an opportunity for self-advancement in the crisis. This phenomenon traditionally displays itself in large format, such as business but is also with the individual. The Opportunist is a ‘big picture’ personality type that has the unique talent to remove themselves (in their mind) from the crisis and to recognise behaviour patterns which display the coming needs or weaknesses which the opportunist will be able to meet with the proper thought and planning. Some of the most profitable businesses in the world have begun with a person of this personality type.

15. The Zen Master

The Zen Master is a rare personality type to find in crises. The Zen Master personality type is only identifiable in crisis situations, as this is when the zen happens. The Zen Master keeps calm, listens to others, thinks to themselves, is practical and almost always comes away from a crisis having improved themselves. The Zen Master is the person who will take the opportunity to learn new languages from the people panicking around them. The Zen Master will learn from the situation, while mentally keeping themselves away from the noise.

Which personality type are you?

-Mliae

New Experiment Starting Now!

This month, for the next 30 days, I will be using the internet for what we should have been using it for before Facebook, online shopping and internet porn took the majority of usage for most people. I will be learning.

We have the knowledge of the earth accessible to us, and we don’t access it. How many hours do we spend online … doing nothing? With all of this information available, I feel quite stupid. So maybe I should take a moment and just learn somethings.

I will be posting a weekly post, every week for the next 4 (5?) and sharing what I have learned from the internet that week. For the time at least, I will look for the information to all be in English language that I can share those links and information here with you.

Where to begin…History? Nature? Sciences?

-Mliae

World Tourism Day

Starting in 1980, the United Nations began hosting the International World Tourism Day! World Tourism Day is celebrated on 27 September every year.

Tourism is important as it creates social, economic, cultural and even political value.  This year, I would think that sustainability is also a high value on this, World Tourism Day.

For some people, the word tourism conjures images of obnoxious, tank top clad tourists, talking loudly and stomping over the meticulously planned gardens. Or corporate tourism giants counting their piles of money. These are the very few. Tourism is actually very important to communities globally.

In many countries, tourism is one of the main incomes into the community. Meaning, their ability to make a living depends upon your desire to go there. Can you imagine? What would your life look like, if you only got income when your friends spent the day with you? Challenging.

In my mind, on this day – especially this year – we should take some time to think about the impact our tourism decisions have on communities. What do we desire to accomplish? Is it a priority to make sure that our money goes into the communities that need it? Or is it our goal to go see those sights we’ve long since read about in the leafs? Whatever the goal is, we should recognise it, understand it and plan accordingly. If we want to see those places, we should go there. If we want to contribute to these areas, we should go there. If we want to jump into a tropical lake and swim under a waterfall, then we should pack our swimming suits & hiking boots and just go!

Some ideas for celebrating World Tourism Day:

Use it as an excuse to plan that long desired trip!

Been dreaming about that spontaneous romantic getaway, but haven’t quite gotten around to actually doing it? Today is the day. What more do you need?

See some local sights

Always going away for holiday? (Same here) Why not take some time and check out your local sights? You may be surprised at what is offered in your local community. Search engines will always tell you what’s happening.

Make this weekend a holiday at home:

Shut the phone and go for a walk. Or make a nice dinner and a special beverage by candlelight. Avoid the screens and appreciate your time like you would if you were travelling.

If you’re feeling particularly feisty, learn to make some exotic food. Just add sand, fruity drinks and some tropical mood tunes. Put on those sunglasses and dance!

Where does World Tourism Day take you?

-Mliae

ETW BANNER-400dpiLogo

The Desire for a Sustainable Lifestyle

I talk about many things. One topic that I am quite fond of, is that of sustainability. Food sustainability, sustainability in production, making better purchasing decisions, sustainable fashion…..sustainable living.

Obviously, the reason I write about this topic so often is because it is of high importance to me. (That sounded quite selfish….)  I very much enjoy introducing companies I have found that are doing good things, I like having open conversation with you, my readers, about the challenges in achieving sustainability in its different forms. I think that I also write quite often about this, because I am learning about it myself all the time. Also, maybe somewhere in my head, I do desire to help create change – even if it is only by having a dialogue.

The Cambridge dictionary defines Sustainability (environment) as ‘The quality of causing little or no damage to the environment and therefore able to continue for a long time.’ The way we (those of us not dictionaries) see sustainability encompasses more than the basis for causing no harm and making it last.  Sustainability outside of this definition, can be anything from sustainable food practices (buying organic, eating locally, reducing meat intake…), sustainable travel & tourism (minimising the negative effects of tourism, create benefit to the areas…), Sustainable gifts, even sustainable business practices (considering affect on society, treating employees better, long term strategy). In my mind, this makes sustainability more a way of making better decisions. The short-term immediate gratification of the 1980’s introduced a ‘winner take all’ mindset in which people seemed to somehow lose the importance of long-term thinking. After 30+ years of this kind of ‘now now now’ immediate-gratification thinking (like a world of infants), we find ourselves at this moment. A time where we must slow it down. All of it. We need to think about what we are doing, the effects it will have and what options we may have to the obvious questions.

No matter how you see the boundaries of the word ‘sustainability’, it is a very important word for us to keep not only in our vocabulary, but also in our decision making process. Now more than ever, it seems. Especially since the UN Climate Change Summit this year has left the world with little doubt that something MUST be done. Now, not 15th day.

I would like to make better, more sustainable decisions in my every day life. It seems like it would be easy, but it is not. You see, I have a problem…I am spoiled. I’m spoiled by the easy access to foods that shouldn’t be available outside of season. I’m spoiled by how I feel in soft fabrics from high-end stores. I’m spoiled by cheap and trendy clothing options – I can have an entire new look for 20€. I’m spoiled by never having to consider the labour behind my purchases. I’m spoiled because I live in a time where the only thing we have to think about, is ourselves. And SO ARE YOU! We all are, no? So the question is then, how do we bring ourselves off our clouds of cotton and realise that it is up to us to make the change to sustainability?  That WE have to do the work. Especially if we expect corporations to make big changes. After all, businesses follow the money. Our money. As consumers, this is our power.

There have been efforts here.

Remember the sustainable food experiment? Eating only local or what I could cook myself (actual food making with only actual ingredients). That did not last so long as I hoped for. What resulted was me learning to make tortillas (easiest bread possible), muffins with fresh berries I picked and eating buckets full of berries, summer squash and mushrooms. I was not well prepared for that experiment. However, since that experiment, I have found myself eating more local produce, eating in season fruit/veg  and not craving so much the ready food at the food store.  I have not been baking. I don’t love baking… But I should be baking.  The challenge with eating more sustainably is that its difficult. We like easy. I will inform you if I discover the secret to success with this.

I have also tried saving my money to invest in more sustainable, higher quality, possible hand made options. (Pro tip: Saving money is much easier if you actually have money. So, saving was a fail.) I did stop shopping. My new plan for this (because a lady has to have something nice sometimes) is to find a couple best options in my colour (if its a handmade leather bag) or in my size (if its clothing) or my favourite design (if its something else) and save those items and when people ask what I want for my birthday, or holidays. I can suggest that people put what money they would have spent towards one of those items (or a gift card for that store – if they offer gift cards). Holidays are quite often and I have found that my loved ones are usually happier if I give them an idea instead of them spending forever searching for the ‘perfect gift’.  But only if they ask. Otherwise, I love personal selected gifts! *If you do this, please don’t go weird with it. I’ve had people insist I only give some or another thing and it really takes the fun out of gift giving.

Also, when you find yourself with only a few new items in a year, you appreciate that item so much more. I don’t quite understand how that works, but it does seem like the more often new things come to us – the less we appreciate them. Sustainable items do come with a higher price than we have been paying (average). Of course it does! That price displays that the workers are being paid a living wage, perhaps the logistic transport was also a green/slow method, and the items are made by craftsmen and sold by a company that pays attention to the details across the growth – production – logistical – labour – business processes. Quality items cost money. Quality items also last soooooooo much longer than the rubbish we are buying now. This is why QUALITY BASICS are a thing. Basics never go out of style (now that I’ve said that, all of my basics will be out of style next week) and quality lasts. Win-win. The challenge here, I would say, is that we must relearn how to shop as conscious consumers. Our current processes will not work with the new sustainable system.

As a luxury-loving convenience monster myself, I know that the change into a more sustainable lifestyle will be slow. But slow is a sustainability keyword, so maybe its a good thing.

How is sustainability changing your decisions?

-Mliae

ETW BANNER-400dpiLogo

Vegan Cabbage Casserole

Vegan Cabbage casserole – serves 5  

 

A simple way to create a warm dish for a family meal, Cabbage casserole is traditionally served including mince meat. This spin on the recipe uses Vegan Textured Vegetable Protein mince as a minced meat substitute which works beautifully!  

 

This dish is perfect for an evening meal on a chilly autumn day. 

 

What you need: 

  • 1 ½ dl Textured Vegetable Protein – Plain mince 
  • 2 dl Rice 
  • 2 veggie stock cubes 
  • 1 small-med sized green cabbage, cubed  (or ½ large green cabbage) 
  • 2l water (enough to cover chopped cabbage in boiling pot) 

What to do: 

  • Chop the half cabbage into bite-size pieces 
  • Boil for 30 minutes in a medium pot with 2L water with the 2 veggie cubes 
  • Preheat the oven to 200C or 400 F 
  • Take a separate large baking pan  
  • Fill bottom of baking pan with the 2 dl uncooked rice (only enough to cover the bottom of the baking pan) 
  • Sprinkle 1 ½ dl TVP pieces on top of the uncooked rice 
  • Once the cabbage has boiled for 30 minutes, ladle everything (cabbage AND the water it cooked in) into the casserole  pan. It looks really soup-y but the uncooked rice and vegetable protein will soak up the water and cook in it when it’s in the oven. 
  • Bake in the oven for 2 hours or until the top has begun browning. 
  • Best when served with currant jam. 

IMG_E9193

Enjoy!

-Mliae

*Disclaimer: I was provided the textured vegetable protein in exchange for creating the recipe

Apolis Global

Bloggers Bash Blog Awards Voting Is Now Open!!

I am sooooo-excited about this. The Annual Bloggers Bash Blog Award is the first actual blog award I have been nominated for. We have now made it to the point of voting, which is completely up to you, my awesome readers!

There are 8 categories. You can vote for your favourite blogger in each of the 8 categories. My blog, Lifexperiment Blog, is a nominee for the Best Lifestyle Blog category.  Categories include: Best Blogging/Writing, Best Entertainment Blog, Best Food Blog, Best Lifestyle Blog, Best Personal Development Blog, Best Photography Blog, Best Travel Blog,  and Best Book Review Blog. Please click here to vote for your favourite blogs!

Thank you and….YAY! 😀

-Mliae

January Declutter Challenge Is Complete! Shall We Continue It?

Good day, my peoples!

Firstly, the *feature photo is NOT of my home. This was a pic I sourced from Pixabay. (although at times, I have felt that this is my life)*

January is over and my January declutter challenge is past its conclusion date. This declutter challenge really got me motivated. I would actually like to continue the challenge on a month-by-month basis. Although I would really like to challenge myself and you, for all of 2019, that’s a big ask. I prefer having declutter buddies throughout this process as it somehow makes it so much easier. So, I think I will continue this challenge for February and I do hope you will continue with me!

For my last half of the January declutter, I purged 1 item a day (at least!). I realized early on in this challenge that paper clutter is my biggest problem. Bills (ooohhh…the bills!), Magazines (which I successfully managed to purge. Yay for me!) and books. I have always had a weakness for books. Everyone knows this, so I receive even more books. Occasionally, I get gifts of whatever some people manage to find at the used book shop for basically free. The problem with this is; Although people know I like to read, they have no idea what I like to read. I feel full of guilt to rid myself of gifts, so I keep them. I keep them all. This creates some spacial issues. (Also created the RBRC) Speaking the truth, I hate romance novels. I’m not a big vampyr fan, and research written in the 70’s is out of date many times over. So, I purged. This was my focus for the last 2 weeks. Purging my books and only my books. I gave away +2 full bags of books, then created 1 shelf for my ‘to-reads’ (Especially for the RBRC) and then I can pass these along (& hopefully the dictionary also!).

Looking at my shelves now feel so nice. A relief almost. It started me thinking about things. It’s strange how we spend so much time wanting items, but then when our homes are ‘full’ all we want to do is to clean it. How much time and energy of our lives do we actually invest into our possessions?  In my mind, it is quite much. This should be something we take into consideration when making future purchasing decisions. Because that book costs far more than the 10 cents someone paid for it. I was surprised to find that I had been dragging these books around with me for years. Why? How much of my mental and physical energy have I wasted on some junk that I won’t ever read? How much space has it taken in my small home? How much extra electric have I paid for these items to be there? (This is a big one when sorting the refrigerator) How many times have I dusted these useless items?

Now on to more important matters…. How was your January declutter challenge?

365 Days of New posted about her success with the January declutter Challenge and she has photos!

Janet’s Writing Blog posted about her success this month and drops a big hint that tells me maybe she continues with me?? 😀 😀

I am pinging some of the awesome people who joined in with not only this declutter challenge, but varying degrees of eliminating the junk, and I cannot wait to hear how it went!

Unexpected in Common Hours

Ghost MNC

Leggy Peggy

Saguren

Through My Lens

Elle Knowles

Time in our lives is valuable. I hardly think that there is anyone out there who actually enjoys cleaning. So isn’t it time we surround ourselves only with the people, items and activities which we enjoy and let everything else go?

Let’s keep this decluttering train rolling! Who’s with me for February?

-Mliae

*Feature photo sourced via Pixabay

Goodbye Junk. Hello Summer. Save $10 when you book online at 1-800-GOT-JUNK?