Life Goes on, on Cape Cod 1-2018 & Anne's Spinach Salad

       Heat wave, heat wave, wow weather coming here in next couple days in the 50s then lots of rain and then back to more seasonal temperatures come after the weekend. Funny how in August and September we would be belly aching about the 50s, now in January we are thinking heat wave, and with the extreme long period of deep freeze for us here on the Cape, this is a welcome change. The one problem with these changes though is sickness. I am hearing quite a bit in the schools with friends with kids and teachers. While we work out of the house this helps cut down on our chances. But the weather is still doing a number on things most others don't have to deal with and that is past surgical areas are more affected with these changes then before. But life is and it goes on so I am leaning, unfortunately not as graceful as I or others would like, but I am learning to deal with these changes. Speaking of weather changes, I am now sure that we will not get much snow the rest of the season cause my snow blower is now fixed/repaired and ready to go. After this last 2 inches (to small to use with anyway) my repair man came over and got the final broken piece replaced, we both laughed stating that should insure we don't get any more, not that we would complain, but still, and my neighbor just got a new snow blower this past off season. So that makes it twice as likely we get only enough to be a pain in the but but not enough to blow, oh well. 
      For the rest of life not too bad as my pouch has gone to visit our daughter for a bit and will be back in the house sometime in February, the nice thing I don't have to do the weather thing with him and his walks. He loves the colder weather and snow and wants his walks everyday, but I do miss not having him here to be my buddy. So far this since Early November the wood burner has been going nearly nonstop and has been a blessing. Is it perfect no, and when we get past this season will need to address, but other than that have been very grateful for it as that is the primary source or heat, but we do mix with the gas heater to help offset the difference. 
      I am so hoping that I can get out again soon to get more clams and maybe with the warmer weather I can get some digging in between rain drops to get some steamers. With temps below freezing we are open only to quahogs, oysters and sea clams (and sea clams I can not walk that far out onto the flats and back at this time.) But we will see what happens and maybe, just maybe we can get some. In mid February I am looking forward to getting with one of my worship team guys to go over my fishing gear so he can tell me what I have and don't have. What basics I need and what is no longer usable. He is a fishing guru and is an avid fisherman. Me well, fishing was something my Dad would take me to do while he rowed the boat and I caught the perch, or when someone from the church we went to when they came, would take us flounder fishing. Other than that I would go with my father in law for bass fishing in a river waders but that is it. I would love to go Blue Fish Sea Bass and Stripers. I would love to go for Flounder again, and would like to get some more fresh water bass fishing in. So we will see just what we have and were we go from there. I will update you after we have had a chance to go over stuff. 
      Well thats about it for now, life on the Cape goes on, hope you and yours stays healthy and well and hope you can enjoy this time of the year both inside and out, especially if you can call this place, ole Cape Cod, home sweet home.  
      Sometimes we find local businesses by accident or by reference or sometimes out of necessity. This week I was introduced to Hubbards Paint & Wallpaper here in South Dennis. I prefer not to do big box stores, at least the one on the Cape and the next name local I have become very discouraged with and prefer not to have to deal with. So talking to my contractor who has had the pleasure of piecing together, repairing turned remodel work at my house, he gave me a few alternatives when it came to someplace I could get paints, stains and supplies at. Hubbards located on Theophilus Smith Rd, (I did not realize they also have locations in Hyannis and Falmouth) righty before the stop sign at the transfer station. Let me tell you they are some of the nicest folk in there and good prices. They specialize in Benjamin Moore Paints and have a variety of other products that I have been looking for since I moved to the Cape 6 years ago. If you are in need of paints, stains, wallpapers or any supplies that to along with, check them out, I think you might leave the rest behind. Oh and did I mention they are locally owned. OH yes. 
      Next is Cape Cod Creamery, yes Ice Cream, the Hyannis location in the Christmas Tree Plaza is open year round. Now hour are the tricky thing as they do go with the flow of the weather, but pretty much they try to stay open from 11am to 9pm Monday - Thursday and 11-4 Fridays - Sundays and all this is if the weather cooperates. How do you follow the hours for early closings, check into their facebook page as they keep hours updated with any changes. But they are always open (ok always weather permitting) for lunch and early afternoon during the week and then are open on weekends. Yes many of us need good ice cream even when it is snow up a storm out there, but they have more, go in and check their Panini Sandwiches, their soups and their Soup & Sandwich combos. Cape Cod Creamery always has something going on and is a tasty treat any time. So don't thing all the ice cream shops close up during the colder months, get on over to Cape Cod Creamery and enjoy the same great ice cream offerings that you can enjoy come June, July and August just without the lines. Yumm Thank you so much for staying open year round. 
      Well I finally made it out to the lighthouse station. For the first time if a couple weeks I have not had to come through snow, ice or what not to get to out here and most times the old guy has been standing on the porch waiting for me. Today I'm not sure where he is, and I guess I am going to have to go hunt him down. At least there it has warmed up a bit so this should be fun. So after looking all around the grounds I finally decided to check the station house (you would have thought I would have started there. I found him, where else but in the light tower. With the temps so warm he has it opened up and doing a little winter cleaning. He invited me up and apologized he did not hear me pull up. Anyway, I asked him what he was doing. I go that look, you the one that is the unspoken, really? that was a dumb question, Anyway he finally said, just look out there, you can still see all the ice that has been pushed up onto the beach and some that still floating out in the ocean. He tells me that it fascinates him how tidal salt water can freeze, then asked me if I saw hear about the guys earlier in the week surfing both out off Nantucket and he even saw a couple off the beach below the lighthouse. I told him I heard something about it but thought they were joking. He said, nope they were really there, surfing, although the water was more like a slurpy or slushy, he wasn't sure how they stayed on their boards, cause that slush was ice, All he could say was "weird" and shake his head. But today is a a little different, we can get the fresh air in and get the stuffy air out, and gave he a great opportunity to do a visual check up and down the coast to some of the changes going on with the storms pounding away. Well I asked if any issues with the shipping and fishing communities, He advised me the shipping lanes a few miles out are no problem, some of the harbors have been socked in with ice so out fishing boys have not been able to get out, and a few have been had to find other harbors to pull into as they could not get back in. But our coast guard buddies and tug captains have been working diligently to open up the main traffic lanes and to get our boys back home and those that need out, get them them moving so they can earn a living for their families. He looked at me and finally said, he had better get moving again and wrap up, as there was some rain moving in and did not need to get stuck with all the windows open and have other issues. I thanked him as always for his time and sharing. And he reminded me to tell you all to have a great and wonderful especially if you could do it right here on old Cape Cod.  
      So another year of sides is upon us. I like variety so you will never find me doing 12 months of the same base, like all green beens, or all potato base dishes, or all pasta side dishes. I will mix it with something else so you have a little of something, even if it is all salads, they are different. So with that in mind, a few years ago I did a hot and cold theme, and I really liked it. So I am going back to the cold one month then hot the next. It gets to be tricky this time of year with the cold as much as summer months with a hot side. These dishes are not meant to stay just here, but move them around, try them with different main events, modify them, add to them take away from them personalize them, make them your own, make them to fit your family. Recipes are a hint, a guideline, a suggestion, never a concrete thing. You can do it by the book and that is great, but don't be afraid to experiment. I wanted something green for January because a lot of outdoors is not so green and green is a sign of life. And what better time of year do we need encouraged with new life. So now on with the show before I start eating the keys off my laptop board.   ,,, One last note, as every year, unless I specifically say this is my recipe, I have picked it, poked it, lifted it, from some church or social spiral cookbook or from old newspaper clippings my mother or my wife's mother clipped or were give from other ladies in the church or from my father-in-laws practice. So this is from a good old Baptist Church cookbook, I like to say it has got to be good cause it's been blessed. LOL.. ok on with the show. 
      This week's recipe: Anne's Spinach Salad
      1      bag      spinach, cleaned and stems removed
      1      can      Chinese noodles (5 oz can)
      8      oz        Wish-bone French dressing (small bottle)
      1      tsp       curry powder
      1      tsp       garlic powder 
      2      tsp       Worcestershire sauce
              dash of Tabasco
      3      Tbsp    butter
      Melt butter and add curry powder, garlic powder, Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco. Spread out Chinese noodles over bottom of cookie sheet. Pour butter mixture over. Bake in a 200 degree over about 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cool. Toss spinach and noodles with dressing. welcomes thoughtful comments and the varied opinions of our readers. We are in no way obligated to post or allow comments that our moderators deem inappropriate. We reserve the right to delete comments we perceive as profane, vulgar, threatening, offensive, racially-biased, homophobic, slanderous, hateful or just plain rude. Commenters may not attack or insult other commenters, readers or writers. Commenters who persist in posting inappropriate comments will be banned from commenting on