Almonds, Evaporated Milk, and a CONTEST!

DSC01519.JPGI’ve been on a cleaning kick this week, and I have discovered some alarming things. Remember my problem with frozen chicken br**sts? (Why the stars? I don’t want to be attached to a google-search for that word…..) I have shared with you that I keep buying bags of chicken, because I’m always sure that we’re “out” at home. Well, apparently that’s not all I tend to buy without reason. This week I attacked the pantry and guess what? I found 4 cans of evaporated milk. First of all, I can’t remember the last time I used evaporated milk. And secondly, the only thing I think I use it for is mashed potatoes and fudge, neither of which has been made in this house for a long time. So – weird. The next thing I discovered “en masse” was almonds. Seven bags of them, all unopened. At least I had the good sense to buy different types. There were whole almonds, there were slivered almonds, and there were sliced almonds. I’m good. I think that I had intended to make a few batches of this incredible recipe and couldn’t remember what kind of almonds it called for. But I know that I didn’t buy these packages all at once – they accumulated. I know this because they were all in different spots in the pantry. FPS.

Just so you don’t think my problem is limited to food, I also cleaned out my closet this week. (I took Monday off – remember? I got a LOT done.) I actually sorted my shirts by color (I know. Too much.) and guess what I found out? I have a problem with white shirts. You wouldn’t believe how many white shirts are in my closet. Now in my defense, this is a completely different situation than four cans of evaporated milk. None of these shirts are exactly alike. There are different fabrics, different necklines, different sleeve lengths, and different styles. But still. I don’t think that on the days that I’m going to wear a white shirt, I need to have that many choices to face in the morning. FPS.

So, here is where the contest comes in. I want to know that I am not alone in this lunacy. Surely there are some of you out there who have an overabundance of something in your freezer/fridge/pantry/closet, that you never intended to have in abundance. Please tell me I’m not alone in this. And yarn doesn’t count because there is no recognized word in a knitter’s language that translates to “excess” or “overabundance”. Fortunately. Leave your answer in the comments section, and I will draw a name next Friday, February 1st, for the winner. What does the winner get? A skein of Wollmeise Sock Yarn. 🙂 I thought that would be a good way to start out our monthly blog contests for 2008. And for those of you who don’t have this little problem? You can still enter the contest. Just leave a comment and say, “I don’t seem to have that problem.” and consider yourself entered. I will try to contain my jealousy.

Speaking of contest winners, thank you to everyone who cast votes for the Q4 Challenge this week! There were actually several entries that ran neck and neck with a lot of votes, but the one that got the most votes was the Anemoi-Inspired Mittens, done by Nicole. So Nicole gets the Knitters Choice Award – a $25 Loopy Gift Certificate. And the randomly drawn winner from all of the entries was the Monkey Socks by Karen! Karen also gets a $25 Loopy Gift Certificate. It’s always so fun to see the different interpretations you all come up with for the Quarterly Knitting Challenges. You still have over 2 months left to participate in the Q1-08 – I hope you’ll join us!

Monday we will start a new, regular blog feature called The Loopy Limelight! We have so many fun and interesting people who have become part of the Loopy Family (and that includes all of you) and I thought it would be nice to introduce you to some of them. Monday, I will introduce you to a longtime friend of mine, who has a wonderful recipe (it contains chocolate – yum!) that she is going to share. We’re looking forward to sharing many more people with you in the weeks and months to come, usually on Mondays. We hope this brings some fun recipes and tips and inspiration for all of you.

Sheri anyonehaveanygoodrecipesthatusealmonds,chickenbr**stsand/orevaporatedmilk??


  1. No one’s told my boyfriend he’s not an undergrad any more….so we have well over 2 dozen boxes of Mac n’ Cheese in our kitchen. TWO DOZEN. By my reckoning, that should last us 12 years.

    We also tend to pick up milk whenever we hit the grocery store, so if we haven’t been communicative about grocery lists we’ll occassionally find ourselves with three gallons of milk to drink between us. Solution? Milk drinking contests.

  2. OK, well let’s see…what do I have far too many of?????

    1) Lotions and potions and bath gels. Anything from B&B Works.
    2) Yarn.
    3) Bars of soap from indie soap makers.
    4) Yarn.
    5) Boxes of teas. Lots of different flavors. More than I can ever drink.
    6) Yarn.
    7) Coffee mugs. They’re hiding in all the kitchen cabinets.
    8) Yarn.
    9) Flavored vinegars, mustards, and spices. They’re hiding on a shelf in the basement.
    10) Yarn.
    11) Jewelry. All handmade and unique. Years of hoarding.
    12) Yarn.
    13. Anything else? I’m sure there is. Just look around.

  3. In the past, my problem has been both Miracle Whip and Ketchup. Usually have a LOT on hand.

    This week, though, it is of all things, Vegetable Oil! Three full bottles in the fridge.


  4. I end up with a lot of lotions/facial products (that I don’t use) from silly, wasteful trips to the drugstore. I don’t end up using them because my face is pretty much just okay with cetaphil cleanser and lotion or cream–anything else irritates it. I guess I just get sold on all the promises that the beauty products “promise”!

  5. How about 43 cans of green beans?? My husbasnd does the grocery shopping and that is the only vegetable he’ll eat. I guess he doesn’t want to run out!!

  6. Victoria Secret bras and panties! You know, you get a coupon for a free panty and $10 off a bra – well, who can resist those deals? Yep! I have enough underwear to last me a month without doing laundry.

  7. Notebooks – well any kind of paper really – steno pads, legal pads, spiral notebooks…
    And in the kitchen; rice and pasta. I have boxes and boxes of different kinds of noodles and at least 2 kinds of rice at all times.
    But my favorite obsession by far is still yarn. 🙂

  8. During my baking season, which is winter, I tend to buy brown sugar because I can’t ever remember if I have any on-hand. Of course, it’s always DARK brown sugar, so I never have any of the light when I need it because I always think I have some at home, but I don’t. I tend to stock up on chips, too. Not potato ones, but baking ones, like chocolate, dark chocolate, and peanut butter.

  9. My problem in pens (ink pens). I have more ink pens, caulk pens, colored pencils, dry brush pens than my local Wal-mart has. But the next time I go anywere that sells office supplies. I will have to go see if they have anything new. And I won’t just buy one black pen, I will have to have them in all the colors. I Love Paper too………….!!

  10. my overabundance is tinned tomatoes . whenever i shop they seem to be on sale so i stock up . i seem to forget that we don’t need them or i can’t resist a bargain . i have to put my aunt in though . her emergency stock cupboard was full of tinfoil and tiolet paper? we all have our quirks and isuppose you never can have enough toilet paper!

  11. Once upon a time I ran out of coffee filters. . . if I live another 50 years without buying a filter, I will not make a dent in the collection.

    We are also well stocked on jellies and jams, barbecue sauces and dental floss.

  12. In my kitchen, it’s pasta. I always seem to have 30 different boxes of different shaped pasta. Whatever is open when I make dinner doesn’t seem to be the right kind of pasta for the dish, and so I open a new one! I need to combine all the half empty boxes and make something to use up all the leftovers!

  13. Oh man, I do have it with the food! And other kitchen supplies. Current examples: Brown sugar; 2 separate bags of bulk, 1 lb. of pre-packaged. Rice – two bags. Knorr Chicken Bouillon – 8 boxes! Angel hair pasta – 2 packages. Frozen seasoned potato wedges – 3 bags, all opened, all mostly full. 😉 Several packets of Au Jus mix – ghu knows why, like I make that many French Dip sandwiches? And I found an extra roll each of foil and waxed paper – while still barely into the current rolls – plus a completely unexpected bag of quart Ziplock bags. And three (3) dozen eggs. I don’t use eggs that much!

    I think I have shopping memory loss…

    Recipes? Evaporated milk – pumpkin pie; almonds – almond bark; and chicken br***ts – brown them them with garlic powder, a little salt, lemon pepper and some smashed garlic cloves, then add 1/4 cup each of water and dry white wine. Let cook down until nicely braised, repeat the water/wine bit. Remove chicken, deglaze the pan, save the juices. Have chicken as is, then use cut up to mix in with noodles or rice dishes, stuffing with some mushrooms for a quickie meal, or as sandwich meat. Wonderful!

  14. wow! mine is notebooks also. I love notebooks so much. Really, I love all school supplies, pens, papers, pencils, folders, notepads, you name it. I also love books and shoes. But notebooks that is my weakness…

  15. Wups, insert “turn over and” before the “repeat the water/wine bit” on the chicken br***ts. 😉 And cover ’em while letting the liquid simmer down. The idea is to get them to the falling-apart point and covered with all those lovely brown juices.

  16. Do books count? I blame my parents, but I have more books in my shelves than I could read in a lifetime. I also seem to buy soy milk containers whenever I go to the store, even though I have a container or two at work, a container in the fridge at home, one on the shelf in the kitchen and 3 in the pantry shelves. I just always think I’m “almost out.”

  17. Some might say I stash flour – but I bake all of our bread, so I buy 5 bags or more at a time when they’re discounted. I do have a stash of random odd flours and bread ingredients, bought and used once, but as of yet, not again.

    I definitely stash blank books – I’ll buy myself a new one at the drop of a hat, and put it to use for a few days, but ultimately it ends up on a shelf mostly still empty.

    I have a sizeable t-shirt collection, mostly college shirts because when I was at college, we couldn’t wear screen print shirts before 4:30 in the afternoon unless they were school shirts – and since I lived in t-shirts, I acquired a bunch of school shirts.

    I keep a blanket collection, to fight off the chill. It’s now overflowing my grandmother’s trunk and a there’s a pile on a stool in the living room.

    But I think the worst one are the bits and pieces of my worldly possessions that still reside at my mom’s house, even though I’ve been out of college for two years now, and married and moved out for just over a year and a half.

  18. Lightbulbs, and I can safely say that it is none of my doing. My husband seems to always think we need lightbulbs, so we always seem to have enough lightbulbs to illuminate our house twice over. Funny bit is, we never seem to have the one we want at the moment. 🙂

  19. Black tee shirts. I am always sure that mine are washed out or ruined. I buy one almost every time I go to Target; usually too big.

  20. I never bake, but when my graddaughter visited recently her Mother suggested we all bake a cake. I went to see what ingredients I had on hand and lo and behold I seemed to have accumulated 7 partially used boxes of sugar in my cupboard.
    Since I only use splenda in my coffee, I guess I now have a life time supply.

  21. Sheri, I have an over abundance of two things. And they are not related. I have an overabundance of Bibles and Barbeque sauce. Seriously. At last count there were 24 various versions of Bibles in various places in the house. And nope, my hubby is not a preacher. And there are about 7 bottles of bbq sauce in the pantry, and that is even more inexplicable than the Bibles. My hubby Scot said “I feel like we should have an early 4th of July or something. Doesn’t this stuff go bad eventually?” Yeah, I’ve no clue why there is so much of it. Happy February!!!

  22. Tomato soup. In a box, from Trader Joe’s. The kind with roasted red peppers – the yummiest kind they sell! There are four in my cupboard right now because we’ve consciously been eating it without buying more since Thanksgiving, when we had nine boxes on hand! Umm . . . there are only two of us at home any more!

    P.S. Hope this makes it in before midnight your time!

  23. I can sympathize with your white shirts, but for me it’s red. I see a pile of shirts and it’s the first color I’m drawn to. I always think, I could use a red shirt. And socks, the store-bought kind, I love the ones with holiday or other novelty pictures. I also have a thing for bowls and glasses. I go into Crate and Barrel, or a similar store, and I have a very hard time walking out with out a couple of bowls or a set of glasses.

  24. Refried Beans! I know eeewww! Someone told me they are a a great, local way to get protien. So I keep buying them, but no one seems to eat them. Hmmm…

  25. Ack, I was reading everyone’s comments and they were so amusing and relatable that I lost track of time. Hopefully you’ll have pity on me, Sheri. I’ll make it short and sweet. I always have too many potatoes. Yes, the by-the-pound kind you get at the market. I always think I’m running low, so I get more. Hubby likes rice way more than potatoes, so I never use them, and they just sit there and sprout eyes until the next time I buy them more potatoey companions.

  26. Let’s see. In my pantry there are unexplained and apparently multiplying bags of flour. I don’t bake, and i don’t know how long it’s been since I bought flour, but there are FIVE POUNDS of it in my pantry. Why? Why?!?

  27. Vanilla. For some reasons, I purchase and forget about vanilla extract every few months. And of course I use about four times a year. At least it doesn’t go bad… as far as I know!

  28. Peanut butter. But I didn’t do it on purpose, I swear. One day I opened up the cabinet and there were 3 jars of peanut butter hiding in the back – on top of the 2 open jars on the fridge. WTF?

  29. I’m so late on this, but I just had to add because all these comments are SO funny:

    I currently own 3 day-planners. Why? Because I bought one for myself, the neighbor boy bought one for me, and I got one as a gift at my first meeting of the American Business Women’s Association….

    My question is this: If you think someone’s really busy all the time, why would you buy them a planner? don’t you think they already have one out of necessity??? 🙂

    You would think I would get rid of the things…nope, still scattered around the house.

  30. I keep buying crackers. In my defense, where I live, once you open a box of crackers, they immediately become soggy, so, since I want crunchy crackers, I buy more. The local brand solved this with sub-packaging their crackers, so saltines come wrapped 4 to a wrapper, with about 20 separate wrappers. They don’t become soggy, so I guess I’ll go for the extra packaging.

  31. I have tea; boxes and boxes of tea. I see the varieties when I ship and am seduced by the flavors. But, I don’t drink tea. Looks as if I only collect it.

  32. OK, I might have a teensy, tiny problem with Starbuck’s cups. The plastic travel ones. I might even have an entire kitchen cabinet full of them.

    My husband teases me mercilessly for my collection, yet he also knows how much I love them and adds to the pile at holidays. And they do get used….I take one to work each day, so it’s not like they’re just sitting around.

    I have too many books as well. But books are like yarn….no such thing as too many. 🙂

  33. I have overabundance issues with something that not only takes up space in my closet but also taunts/haunts me: several pairs of jeans which no longer fit. Why keep them you ask? Because *someday* I might be able to squeeze my derriere back into them again and most of them are almost new!

  34. To keep with the freezer theme: ice cube trays (where do they come from?? I don’t buy them!) and ice packs (these I do buy, again and again and again… because I’m always falling off of, onto, into, over, down and up (falling up is hard, but with some very hard work, I’ve become a master!).

  35. In a world, where enough is just never enough, one woman vows to save the earth with her collection of….
    Yup, they are everywhere!! It doesn’t matter that I have four ginormous cubes of them that have never been touched I will buy at least three more when I go to the store next. Not to mention the entire drawer full of them in my office. My desk is covered with them, my kitchen is drowning in their presence. The funniest part is, that up till the past year, I didn’t even really use them. I just liked the idea that I was important enough to need to have Post-It notes everywhere, “just in case.”

    Ok, well Sherri, my secret is out, and no you are not alone in your collection of seemingly unnecessary items!

  36. Straws! Cleaned out the pantry drawers the other day and found 400+ drinking straws. Absolutely no idea how/why I have that many… that’s at least a year’s supply!

  37. I tend to buy loads of napkins, paper plates, and candles. Usually holiday themed. I think I used them all the previous year, buy more, then discover them shortly after the holiday is over. Put the old ones away with the new and (despite my best efforts) start the cycle all over again. Very sad.

  38. I buy too much soap: Herbal soap, pretty smelling soap, a nice color soap, good ole ivory soap, cranberry scented soap for the holidays, heart shaped for valentines, little animal shapes that my granddaughter will like. Gardening soap, etc you get the idea.

  39. I seem to collect those tiny cans of coke… you know, the 8oz ones? I buy two or three six packs every time I go to the store, and I honestly don’t drink that many of them… maybe 4 a week. I don’t want to fill my fridge up, so I sit them on top of it. I think I have 8 six packs right now.

  40. Not sure if this counts… But one summer I went to several fill-a-bag-for-2-bucks sales at second hand stores, and ended up with about 8 pairs of jeans and other pants. A bit excessive, but on the plus side, I don’t need to shop for pants for several years. And that’s a big plus.

  41. I can’t seem to resist buying tea when it is on sale, so I have a couple drawers full of it. That and baking chips–I must have 12 bags, and only occasionally make cookies these days. Accumulating food seems to be a general problem with me, and on Jan. 1 I decided to go on a spending freeze and eat from the pantry/freezer for three months, to see if I could get it under control. I’m still allowed to buy some food (like fresh fruit and vegetables and milk, etc., but I cannot purchase something just because it is on sale and I have a coupon and I will need it eventually! So far so good!


  42. It’s hard to say what we have too many of, since it is usually caused by misplacing something vital and then having to buy another one. I know that on the rare occasion that all of the laundry is done I find that my kids really do have tons of socks. As for food, we have plenty of those “comes with a grinder top” salt and pepper things. They seem to fall on the floor quite regularly and part of the grinding mechanism breaks off, so I am left with a jar with no top full of peppercorns or salt crystals.

    Evaporated milk is often used in pumpkin pie. It also doesn’t last very long on the shelf. I don’t know that it actually spoils, but I have opened some cans that didn’t seem like they were good to use.

    I have also been known to buy the same nuts and trail mixes over and over. I know there are six people living here, but four of them don’t even eat that sort of thing. What was I thinking?

  43. I buy endless amount of shampoo and face wash. I always think I am running out or that I need a new kind, but really it just leads to a huge pile of half-empty bottles.

  44. You must be kidding – being anal and a Libra with an A-type personality not only what I buy but what I write down about buying, multiple times. There really is not enough internet space to list the things – and some need not be shared – but for starters…..Listerine orange flavored strips – have them in every purse, pocket, gym bag, car – glove compartment and door slot, at office in drawers, in canister used for flour on kitchen counter, in cabinets, bathroom and all knitting bags – and THAT number is too large to mention. Next low sodium chichken stockk – in the fond hopes that I might make that chicken soup one day…probably 20 cans and there are only two of us in the house, and that would be followed by tomato sauce for marinara – next to the chicken soup – and maybe 15 cans – as I think about the pantry – there are less of those, to go a different direction try lotion – anything that says it will keep my skin soft and young looking I buy so that no matter what I have something to slather all over me in my constant quest for youth – seriously I probably have 30 different tubes, tubs, pump dispensers, mini tins, you name it – some with scents, some without. Are you getting the drift?? So – thankfully you are not asking for the stash numbers and related knitting accessories as I would be too embarrassed to list them and where they are!!

  45. There are two things that plague our kitchen. Ice cream containers with one spoonful in the bottom. The other is pasta packages, of all kinds, with 75% of the bag gone. Hasn’t always been that way.
    My husband now does the cooking. Hummm….. .

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