Meals From The Freezer & Other Tidbits

I’ve been digging into the freezer to come up with meals so I don’t have to go out and shop. Last night it was taco soup, the next to last baggie I have frozen.

Tonight I will have a pulled pork barbecue sandwich. I believe that’s the last baggie I have of shredded pulled pork.

Allium plant in a pot

And I have one more baggie portion of sliced chicken, I noticed this morning.

As I’ve mentioned before, I go to Billy Sims Barbecue to buy my meat instead of cooking it. Theirs tastes far better than mine does.

Cooking For One:

When you’re cooking for one, it isn’t that expensive to buy already cooked meat. And I eat small portions.

Dividing this meat into individual meals and freezing it in cheap baggies is the equivalent, I suppose, of TV dinners. I just have to add vegetables.

Re-Using Plastic Baggies:

Speaking of plastic baggies, do you re-use them? Do you clean them and use them over and over again?

I do, especially for the larger sizes. I just rinse them or add dish soap and water to wash them if necessary in order to clean them.

And then I put them in the dish drainer with the opening pulled wide to dry overnight.

What Ivy Is Doing:

Ivy is on the cupboard staring out the window. She is such an easy cat to live with.

I’ve never had to worry about her scratching my furniture.

She doesn’t scratch anything but her scratching pole. I tried a smaller one, but she is a tall cat and needed something taller.

Shop Large Premium Tall Cat Scratching Post

So I ordered a big tall one and she’s been using that for a few years. I think it is important to buy a good sturdy scratching post made of wood for your cat.

She likes to play fetch with her swirly toys, so we do that quite a bit. And she likes to play in the rope basket.

She also likes to lay on the stack of quilts in my bedroom when I’m back in that room.

Shop Plastic Coil Spiral Springs for Cats

Interactive Toys For Cats:

I have one interactive toy she doesn’t play with much. I’ve been looking online to see if I can find something else she might like.

The flopping fish I ordered from Amazon was a bust. She’s afraid of it. I bought her one of those rolling balls with light. She won’t go near it.

Shop Flopping Fish Cat Toy

Do you know of any enticing interactive toys for cats?

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  1. I have washed and re-used plastic bags for years, Brenda. I use plenty of soap and hot water and wash them thoroughly inside and out and hang them over my sprayer nozzle on my sink or if they are too big for that over something in the dish drainer to keep them open so they’ll dry. If they wear out then I recycle them at my local grocery store. I wouldn’t microwave anything in them or put them in boiling water to cook something but they are fine to freeze food in, I think. I do try to store food in the fridge in glass containers because I can see what’s in them. I don’t use plastic containers for food storage unless it’s something like yogurt that I buy in the plastic container. And, again, I would never put something in the microwave in a plastic container. Chemicals from the plastic can leach into your food.

    Hope you find some new and interesting toys for Ivy. I’m afraid I don’t have any suggestions; seems like our cats aren’t too playful! Except the oldest one, Tula, has this softball sized fabric ball that she carries up the basement stairs and leaves. I’ve never seen her play with it but if you take it back downstairs she carries it up again. Cats. Funny little folks, aren’t they?

  2. My cats, Bailey and Buddy, love the Frisco Wire Teaser Toy from Chewy. It costs under $2. Nothing to it but they love playing with it. Check it out. Maybe Ivy will like it too!

  3. Brenda, are you ok? I’m so sorry some people feel the need to leave such insensitive comments. Fortunately, that doesn’t happen very often to you, because most of us love your blog and appreciate all the effort you put into it. I’m sure most of us also find the variety of topics interesting, and as it’s already been said before, it’s like spending time with a good friend each day. They say you can hear 100 great comments, and the one that sticks with you is the one rude one. Please, please don’t let her comment ruin your day! I just wanted to make sure you are ok. You have many, many friends here! ((Hugs))

  4. I try not to use too many plastic baggies, but when I do use them, I do wash them out to re-use if they’re not too bad or from something like onions. Otherwise, I had ordered reusable silicone bags in assorted sizes from Amazon. I mostly use those. They are made to be washed and re-used.

    I don’t know of any interactive toys that cats like. From my own personal experience and talking to friends, cats don’t really like these unless they’re young kittens. Now that my cats are seniors (almost 11 & 13), the only toys they like are ones where I play with them…feathers on a stick, old shoelaces, laser light. Sometimes Monkey will play with one of his mice on his own. And the one toy that Clem plays with constantly on her own is a small felt ball. She chases it through the house and down the stairs. She loves when I play fetch with her with that ball. She actually retrieves it and brings it back to me when I throw it down the stairs.

    1. PS – I also meant to say that instead of using baggies for leftover food, I mostly use glass storage containers with locking lids. You can find all sorts of sizes for good prices at TJ Maxx and Walmart. Glass is also much safer for food storage than plastic.

  5. Brenda, I used to wash out Ziplocs when we were trying to get out of debt. Maybe I should start doing it again? They often spring leaks after I try reusing them, but they can be used for dry or just not very wet things and work perfectly fine.

    Ivy sure seems to enjoy having you all to herself these days. One toy our cat likes is the little flashlight thing that shows a red dot. She goes bonkers for that little red dot!

    Hope you have a relaxing evening!

  6. My rescue cats mostly love playing with pipe cleaners! We keep a glass full of shorter ones as my female likes to pull them out, one by one.. so guess that’s interactive! They also love when we make circles out of them, and then chain the circles together so it’s a floppy chain. Those are their most favorites! Oh.. as far as plastic bags.. I once knew a chemist and she said a big NO NO to reusing plastic bags, even if you wash them well. She said bacteria can still grow in them once used for food.. so I’ve NEVER reused them!!! Marilyn

    1. I could see that with with meat, but not from other cooked foods or raw fruits or veggies. My mom has been doing this her entire life…she’s 81 and has never gotten sick, so I dunno. And I’m in my late 50’s and have been doing this my entire 36 years of marriage and have also not gotten sick. I would think that if you wash baggies out or foil with soap and water, the soap and scrubbing will kill any bacteria.

  7. How about the plastic circle with the ball in the rim. It zooms around the inside rim when the cat hits it. They can’t get the ball out so you don’t have to worry about stepping on it or ivy hiding it under things. My cats loved that.

  8. I am very allergic to cats so I’ve never had one, I can’t even visit a relative’s or friend’s house who has a cat because my lungs start to close down within 5 minutes or less of being inside. So, I don’t know much about them. My guess though is that Ivy is missing having Charlie around, even though he was old, didn’t/couldn’t really play with her and was cranky if she teased him too much. Have you thought about a potential companion for her (dog or cat)? I re-use my plastic storage bags, wash them in disinfecting dish soap and water, rinse well and dry mine like you dry yours. I usually store my left-overs in small plastic bowls with tight screw-on lids. They keep food really well in my freezer.

  9. I’ve tried all sorts of more expensive toys, but my Siamese fur babies prefer the simple. They walk around with pom pom balls, hair twist ties, dollar store stuffed mice, and love the ping pong balls!

  10. I bought the swirly toys for my cat based on Ivy’s preference 🙂 He’s been bouncing around with it. But, still his favorite? A regular, empty TP roll. It moves, and he can grab it with his claws to kick at it. He loves them!!

  11. Anything that makes meal prep easier is a win in my book! I do reuse baggies, and I cut up paper towel for the times when I don’t want to use a full sheet! It’s good for the environment to re-use, so we should feel good about that!

  12. You should check out One Dish cooking. Her site has so many great cooking for one recipes.

  13. I have read your blog for years and have never commented until now. I could not let Ina’s comment go unanswered. Ina, I am sorry for you, you seem to be very unhappy. I love Brenda’s blog and am very happy to check in daily. I always find The topics interesting and do feel that I am checking in with friends.

  14. I agree with Teri and Bonnie! It makes my day to check in with our friend Brenda everyday! Treat others how you would like to be treated.

  15. Yikes 😑
    Floppy 🐟 fish scares scares me also!!!
    Hope you find something fun for Ivy so she can play more w/you!
    When we had our 3 catties 🐈 😻 🐈 ,,,,, they all loved paper bags!!! The big ones were special for them ,,,,, they played daily ,,,, took turns. Always fun!!!
    Yes I reuse plastic baggies. Care for them the same way you do Brenda.
    Saves waste & $$$.
    We always recycle foil if presentable.

  16. I waited awhile before unfollowing Brenda to see what reactions I would get on my last comment. Lots of people telling me how rude I was, not surprisingly. Well, at 83 I don’t believe in all that political correctness nowadays, and I just say what I mean. Nothing rude about that! Bye, folks!

    1. Ina, I believe you’re angry and upset with those of us who have pointed out how rude you’ve been. Why are you taking it out on Brenda – she has not said one thing to you. She’s a very kind hearted person and doesn’t deserve your harsh words. In this day and age when many are struggling for whatever reason your meanness is simply not necessary. If you’re really going to leave, I don’t believe you really will, then please just go.

    2. Being 83 doesn’t mean that you can be unkind, for that is what your comment was. Nothing to do with so called political correctness, just treating others as you would wish to be treated.
      Love Brenda’s blog, her posts always interest me.
      Another senior citizen, Mary

    3. Getting old is no excuse for being rude. Yes, you are rude. I feel sorry for your children and grandchildren (if they are still talking to you).

    4. Oh dear Ina, you are just a little pot stirrer, aren’t you? Are you lonely today, just need to stir things up a little. I’m 72 now, not far behind you and no one has ever given me the old folks manual telling me what kind of meanness is okay just because I got old! Do you want people to remember you as a cantankerous old witch or a sweet little lady. I want people to remember me as the handful I am, but I never want them to say I was mean. I know you’re still here, aren’t you haha. Might as well hang around ma’am. I’m sorry you’re so unhappy and you might even start having patience for the trivia that is just everyday life for most of us, just having fun for no reason at all.

  17. I invested in reusable silicone bags and prefer them for food storage. They are fairly expensive to begin with but I haven’t bought plastic bags in almost 2 years so I think they were worth it. I still have some of the larger plastic bags and I do wash and reuse those as well til they wear out. I love your blog and I think you are an excellent writer. Maybe one day you’ll write a book?!

  18. This blog is the only one I read. Why? Because the topics suit me and how I live my life.
    Though we have never met in person, Brenda is a kindred spirit. I relate to everything she posts. THANK YOU BRENDA for giving me something to look forward to each day
    and bringing a smile to my face. I have learned so much from you. Your poignant posts of childhood and personal struggles with life touch me deeply as we have had so many similarities in our journey. You express in words what I have not been able to, and it has been a balm for my soul. To the rude poster, I say grow up and move on and find something different if you can’t relate. And yes, I wash out and reuse plastic bags…for the money savings and the environment. My cats love swirly toys too. I only wish there were restaurants around here (very rural area) where I could buy food and freeze it.

    1. I agree with everything you said! I was literally about to leave a comment about how much I enjoyed this post, then saw the rude comment. Unnecessary! I have followed this blog for years and always will.

  19. I reuse plastic bags (and aluminum foil) when just a rinse or a swipe renders them reusable. Less expense and waste. I find that cooking for one, it’s often makes more sense to buy something ready made or a single serving. Especially for something that you only want a single portion of. I can’t wait to have geraniums again. They don’t seem to be very popular where I live in the South.

    1. I also reuse aluminum foil and paper towels. If I use a paper towel to put a sandwich on and it is not dirty I reuse it!

  20. Ina, that was so rude. You will not be missed. I don’t think you’ve read Brenda’s blog for very long. This is a truly amazing woman who would give you the shirt off of her back if you asked for help. You will not be missed.

  21. I don’t believe it’s necessary to leave a negative comment. Just move along. This is Brenda’s blog and she shares what interests her and her thoughts of the day. Free country, free speech, so far, as long as we can keep it.

    1. Absolutely 💯%
      What’s wrong with these rude ppls???
      If you haven’t got anything worthwhile to say; p-l-e-a-s-e ,,,,, don’t post nasty comments.

  22. Cleatus Liked a felt squeaky mouse, that would squeak when she would bite it, or she jumped on it. In fact, I ended up buying 6 alike, because one at a time would go missing, and it always took me forever to find where she “lost” them. Another favorite was a small purple cloth bird with several feathers stuck on it. Didn’t really look like a bird, but she did like to roll around the floor with it. Then a feather on a stick, I would wave over her, and she would jump up at it. I had a box with her toys in it, so she could pick out what she wanted. Really nothing fancy for her. Her best time was eating treaties, and taking a nap.Oh, and she liked to be vacuumed with the hand held part of the vacuum cleaner. She would wait, or follow me around till I finished, so I wouldn’t forget. Jeff vacuumed her the first time, just to be funny, and she surprised him by loving it. Cats are just fun, no matter what. Love, love them. Hugs from WI.

    1. Yes ,,,,, always fun with catties!! 🐈
      I miss having them.
      Too old now to start rescuing again.
      We currently have Stacey (3 yo) & Missy (10 yo) Both rescues.
      There’s lots to do with caring for a pet.
      Most likely, after many decades of rescuing, these 2 girls will be it. Our last sweeties 💕

  23. My husband re-uses the plastic ziplock bags.
    My cat is also afraid of those interactive toys. She likes rubber bands though.

  24. I also wash my plastic freezer bags. I checked out the fish toy for our cats! Before I buy it I will check out the reviews to see if anyone else’s cat didn’t like it!

  25. Maybe you are loosing advertising revenue because your blogs are not that interesting anymore lately. Sliced barbecue meats, washing plastic baggies, cat toys… plus three of those affiliate links! So, I wish you well. I’ll miss your beautiful patio photographs!

    1. Ina, that was a very rude thing to say! Brenda’s blogs are always interesting! I always enjoy reading them and look forward to them every day! I can totally relate to Brenda. I find that she and I really think a like and I’m sure her other followers feel the same!

      1. I agree with you — that was rude. Sorry Brenda … please don’t let that kind of comment deter you from continuing your saga. Many of us look forward to just checking in with you each day to see how you’re doing.

    2. Ina, are you having a bad day? That was a pretty harsh thing to say to lovely Brenda. I’ve been checking out some other blogs the last few days and Brenda’s is hands down the best I have ever read. I don’t need recipes or craft lessons but when I read Brenda’s blog it’s like sharing coffee and catching up with a friend every morning. She put my mind at ease today that I’m not weird because I wash my baggies out :). Not a big thing, but nice to know we’re talking to someone who thinks like we do. And who could ever get tired of pictures of beautiful Ivy? I have cats myself and I really relate to Ivy’s antics and I love how much she is loved. Brenda shares her life with us every day and that’s why we love her.

    3. What is wrong with you? I enjoy Brenda’s posts very much. Hi find another blog then. Rude comments aren’t necessary.

    4. Ina, do you have any idea how hard it is to write a blog post every single day – have you tried it?! If you were a blogger, could you think of something super interesting or entertaining for your readers every single day? I seriously doubt it. You can’t expect Brenda – or any blogger – to write something interesting (in your opinion!) every single day. There will be some posts you don’t agree with, can’t relate to, or that simply don’t interest you. So what. You don’t have to leave a rude comment. Simply move on.

  26. I agree with you on reusing my plastic freezer bags. I wash them just like you do.

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