Every Day

The Best Laid Plans……

Ever have one of those days where the best laid plans seem to go off track? I am sure that everyone has had a day like that.

On Monday, I told you that I was planning on canning the meat I purchased on Tuesday. So I got up bright and early that day. The first thing I did was put the chuck roast along with fresh potatoes, carrots, celery, and beef broth in the crock pot. I turned it on so that we would have a nice dinner after my day of canning.

I washed all of my jars to can the ground beef and got my accessories and vinegar ready. I put half of the ground beef in a huge fry pan to cook it. As I was standing over it, I got the strong smell of vinegar. I then smelled the meat that was not in the pan and got the same vinegar smell. I knew immediately that Top’s had sold me bad meat. I checked the date on the label and it was the same day I was cooking it. I had not checked that at the store because one of the meat ladies was putting it all out and handed me a package because she was in my way. I assumed it was all fresh for the sale. That was a mistake on my part! Never again will I not check the date.

I called Top’s and they told me to throw the meat out and bring my receipt and their label from the package. They said they would refund my money. So after taking the time to throw all the meat out and put it in the garbage can in the garage, I went up to the store. A woman refunded by money. I had paid $ 18.90 and she said to me I will give you $ 19.00 like she was doing me a big favor. I spent more than that in gasoline and time to correct their mistake. I was tempted to say something but I let it go. I decided I would not go back and buy another package. At that moment I did not trust what Top’s was doing with their meat. The meat was totally brown when I opened it except that the outside part was red. Are they selling old meat, putting a new date on it, and just putting pink slime on the outside? I don’t know but I was not taking any risk again.

My sister had mentioned to me that Aldi’s had chicken on sale for $2.49 a lb. They had no tenderloins so they put their chicken breasts at the same price. I got 2 large packages.

I came home and cut all the chicken up to can it. As I was getting ready to do so, I noticed that there was no heat radiating from the crock pot. I felt the side and it was ice cold. I unplugged it and plugged it back into another outlet. Sure enough it heated up. Hubby has to replace the other outlet. But there was now no way that this stew was going to be ready to eat for dinner. UGH! So when it was finished by 8pm that night, I put it in a stock pot and cooled it down before I put it in the fridge. We ate odds and ends from the fridge that evening. Last night I heated the stew up and it was delicious. We will eat it again tonight.

I canned 4 quart jars of chicken. They held the entire 2 packages of chicken. I decided not to can the pork so I froze it for Hubby to grill it outside over the weekend. I was just too tired after the chicken was done.

The next morning I noticed all of the can lids were popped. However I always take the rings off and then lift the jars by their lid to make sure they sealed. The very last one I lifted did not seal. I had to throw that jar of chicken out. I was so disappointed but it is the first time in 2 years that I have not had a jar seal. So I count myself fortunate. I have no idea why it didn’t seal. I did everything right. No cracks in the jar or lid and I wiped the rim with vinegar. Oh well!

My week is getting better and better, yet very busy. I have been helping Hubby cut and trim a lot of our flowering bushes to get them ready for the winter. We also threw out our hanging baskets of flowers. We kept the actual baskets though so that we can reuse them next year. I am going to try to grow impatience to put in them next spring. I got some seeds to do that. Those two baskets were $39.99 each this spring at Niagara Produce. If I can grow them myself, it will save us a lot of money. But anyhow we did so much work that with grass clippings and all of the stuff from the gardens we put out the equivalent of 6 barrels of those and garbage.

I will post our weekly Frugal Things post sometime this weekend.