Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Creamy Rice Pudding

As I try to decide what to take with me, and what to keep, I came across a my aunt's recipe box. She was somewhat of an adventurous cook for our family. She had given me her collection after her husband died because she could never see cooking these for just herself. She had lost her passion for cooking and sadly reverted to plain and simple. No longer were the fantastic and unusual items coming from her kitchen and we no longer saw these creations at our family gatherings. She has since passed, but these recipes will always keep her alive for me. I am currently scanning all my family recipes and will pass them on to my children in their original form.

This was one recipe I had to share. I've had Rice Pudding before but this is my favorite hands down. It is easy and no precooking of the rice. All goes into a greased casserole and into the oven. There was no time given, so I stir it every so often and keep an eye on it until it is thickened to the way I like it. I have covered it and cooked it uncovered. It is very forgiving and tastes great. Unfortunately, I've never timed it, so it truly is one of those heirloom type recipes. I hope you enjoy!


Creamy Rice Pudding

1 quart milk
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup raw rice
1 Tablespoon butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup raisins

Heat oven to 325 degrees F. In a greased casserole (1-1/2 quart) combine all ingredients. Add raisins the last half  hour of baking.

For thicker pudding, increase rice to five tablespoons. 

Serves 6.

Monday, March 28, 2016

90 Days to Decide

I have 90 days from the time of the divorce finalization to decide where to go. The house, most of the contents and cars went to the ex. I got a small bank account, a little retirement and what I can take with me, depending where I go. The bank account isn't going to last long, and with not working for the last 25 years, it's made life interesting.

Opera House in Sydney
My first choice is Australia. I've been enamored by it since high school, when we hosted a student from there. Family has lived there in the past and my best friend lives there. So, I'm really, really considering there. I have  all 18 pages of my VISA completed. I need forms certified to attach and another look to make sure everything is in order, then off it goes.

There is a huge drawback at my age. I cannot work while there on the VISA. I couldn't qualify for a working VISA because of my age, and I didn't qualify for the jobs posted because of my lack of education. The promise of allowing me to finish college never happened, and now I'm paying the price all around. That's just a minor setback. I'll find another way.

King's Canyon
I opened up a bank account and made sure I could transfer funds internationally, the cost, etc., etc....  I also looked into health insurance - wow!!! What a difference between there and here! I can do better as an international there than buying it here as a native and staying. I was dumbfounded to say the least.

Cost of living depends on where you decide to stay. I'm looking at a suburb of Sydney right now. The rent is about the same price as the area here, food costs are quite close, and wages are decent (if I decide to stay and can get sponsorship). I found a snag with apartment hunting though. They want me there and showing me apartments before they will discuss if I can rent or not. I've contacted different agencies and they said that all the owners want to meet their tenants before they will consider renting. That makes it a bit difficult and expensive on my end. I have to rent a hotel or something before I can consider looking. How long that will take? I have no idea.

If I do go this route, I leave the house with 2 suitcases and a carry-on. I start all over again from scratch. I leave everything behind except what's in those cases. My son says that it's a clean fresh start - to go for it. My daughter says I'm nuts leaving everything behind because I can set up house here with things and save that money. Yes, that's true, but with no vehicle, I must rent something to move as well plus maybe a storage unit if I don't find something right away.

There are so many IF's and MAYBE's. I'll have a little help from my friend, but everything hinges on everything else right now.

I'd love to hear your opinions. What would you do?

Saturday, March 26, 2016

What Doesn't Kill You Makes You Stronger

I never thought I'd be writing this. let alone experiencing it. After 25 years of marriage, I am facing life on my own after a divorce. It's been a painful process and one that took me away from this blog while I became centered again. I was lucky to have support of family and friends, but was terribly saddened by those friends I lost along the way.

My grandmother always said, "What doesn't kill you, makes you stronger." I'm finding out that it's true. I've found a direction, focus and desire that I didn't have before. There is so much to life that I want to experience and now I get that chance.

You are going to see a different focus on this blog. It will no longer be just a book focus but a focus on life with recipes, tips, hints, reviews of books, services and products plus a focus on my new adventures. Things are going to be more personal and fun - not just "this is a book or product and here are my thoughts..." You will finally meet the person behind this blog.

I invite you to join me for the ride of my life. Get ready - it's going to be fun!!!