The Rules

To fully appreciate the context of this post, you might want to reference fellow blogger Lisa Dingle’s recent entry  at

I do foster care for rescue dogs and our current house gust is a little fella that goes by “The Dude”   (yes, as in the Coen Brothers  “I’m the Dude. so thats what you call me.”)  Although he resembles a bowling ball more than he is likely to use one I would not put it past his  Dudeness to push one down the alley to knock over a few pins.


  He’s got “tude.”  He’s also smart; smart enough to realize that when you are a guest in our house  “there are rules.”  Our own rescue girl Miss Delilah read him those rules when he arrived and periodically she reminds him of said rules when she deems it necessary.  Dude listens respectfully, licks his butt and moves on. It’s a Dude thing.

Rules are what keep most households from pitching over the edge into the abyss of domestic chaos.  Abyss ( what’s the plural ?  Abysses?  Abyssi?  )  anyways in general, an  abyss  is not a place one wants to go ( yes Lisa Dingle  I too have seen the movie…I too did not care for the ending and to be honest the whole breathing water concept complete freaked me out.)  so we have rules, some written but mostly unwritten.

The Bisquick post from my Bedlam Group friend and fellow blogger ( I am totally riding on coattails of the talented writers in The Group to even call myself a “fellow blogger”  with my fledgling posts, but I have been encouraged by their support so I’ll claim fellowship, no rings needed)  struck a chord.  Bisquick is a staple in our pantry because believe it or not it is vegan which makes baking for my vegan daughter and son-in-law much easier.  I have endeavored over the years to move away from packaged foods, but Bisquick is staying, kept fresh in it’s air tight supesized container which holds the “family” box I purchase at our nearest bulk foods warehouse.  Hey, it’s a nice balance to the organic local veggies we receive every week in our CSA Farm share box. Nothing says healthy more than a beet, brussel sprout and parsnip potpie topped with a flaky Bisquick Crust. Yum!

I am kidding.  While I do make Bisquick Crusted pot pies ( both veggie and chicken as our younger daughter is not a vegetarian) I have not, nor do I intend to put beets in them.  I stand alone in my enjoyment of the earthy, red root crop that were such a generous portion of this years farm harvest.  I have a refrigerator drawer full of beets. Unlike the kale we received in shrub like quantity each week,which can be frozen, the beets pose a dilemma for me.  Yes they can be pickled, but as much as I like fresh beets I simply dont care for pickled beets.  In fact I didn’t know I like beets because the only way they were served when I was a kid was in the pickled form.  Imagine my surprise when I had them fresh and lightly steamed!  My beet dilemma stems from a rule I grew up with. “Don’t waste food,” a rule reinforced by the years we spent in Southeast Asia where we saw firsthand those starving people parents reference when quoting that rule. ( To their credit my own parents never did that, even before we moved overseas.)  Receiving the CSA share boxes this year really pushed me to cook both spontaneously and creatively,  which was for the most part a good thing (hence the five bags of frozen kale in the freezer, waiting for their moments of glory in the winter soups to come)  Thankfully, beets keep a good long time.

Lisa’s “freakin’ Bisquick ” story brought to mind my important kitchen rule.  While we do have our kitchen cabinets somewhat sorted by category ( and refrigerator shelves too I might add)  I can function with the occasional ingredient shuffle.  For me it’s “The List” rule that matters most.  When one uses the last of something, one should write it on “The List”  posted on the kitchen fridge.  It is important enough to require a small magnetic pen/pencil sleeve stationed right next to “The List” to ensure writing implements are always available!  Nothing raises the ire of Mom quicker than the discovery that someone has used up the peanut butter, last egg or brewed the last tea bag right after the weekly grocery pilgrimage.

These oddities of life, the Rules we use to stave off insanity and chaos  require humor because if we didn’t laugh we would cry.  That humor is what I love so much in Lisa’s blog, why I have referenced it here several times and likely will again.  In the meantime I just want to know  “Who used the last of the freakin’ Bisquick without putting it on The List!”

Now off to google Beet recipes.  Happy Trails good readers.

Deborah H Rahalski

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