So much happening; so little time. Here's a mishmash until I can get my act together and settle on something to write.
Without any votes from Republicans, Democrats passed the American Rescue Plan of 2021. The plan is wide-reaching, sending immediate payments to most Americans. But, it's the other parts of the plan that make this bill historic legislation. These include extending unemployment and SNAP benefits and child tax credits. An analysis by the Urban Institute found the bill will reduce poverty in the U.S. by a third this year alone. That's huge. Even better, the Institute projects the Plan will cut child poverty levels in half. President Biden signs the bill Friday, March 12, 2021. Update: President Biden signed the historic bill today, March 11, 2021.
Seuss Enterprises stopped publishing six novels because of hurtful and racist illustrations. There is no question the illustrations are racist to the core. In fact, when I recently saw one of the illustrations online, I remembered it. We were being indoctrinated as kids and no one realized it. Imagine how imprinted white kids became. And, imagine the effect on Black children and other children of color. Seuss Enterprises did the right thing. We learn and grow. Or, at least, we should.
My colleague and friend, Nancy Jean, has been hard at work on her blog. Nancy Jean's ancestor, Nancy Kendall assisted escaping enslaved people via the Underground Railroad. The blog tells that story as well as covers various race issues from then and now. I've had the privilege of working with Nancy Jean on this project. Check it out here: Grandfather's Gift.
Brad and I still have not gotten our COVID-19 vaccines. We're registered with several local medical groups and vaccination websites. It's just a matter of time. I hope sooner rather than later, though. We're so ready to get back to some normalcy.
Brad will retire in the next few weeks. He's worried about how to spend his time. I'll just be happy not to get up at 5 a.m. anymore. We'll figure the rest out.
I now have Medicare. I am not yet 65, but Medicare coverage starts on the first day of the month you turn 65 no matter what day your birthday lands. I had my first doctor's appointment under Medicare yesterday. Imagine my surprise at having to fill out a 6-page questionnaire asking everything from "Do you have throw rugs?" to "Do you practice safe sex?" Hmmm...?
And, the cats - of course you want to hear about them. Greta, the older girl with kidney disease, is holding her own. She's having trouble grooming herself, so Brad and I help. We try to help, anyway. Chevy is his cute huggable self who loves his Mom. Rudy is into everything as usual. And, Trudy gives Rudy a run for his money. Those two are quite the characters.
Last but not least - a request from my sister, Megan. She needs fudge. Who doesn't? Fudge is the most wonderful invention. Comfort food doesn't get any better.
Fudge can be tricky to make, but several years ago I found a recipe at Allrecipes.com that makes it super easy. Below is the original recipe with notes of modifications from me that make it even easier. It turns out great every time. The best part is you can have instant gratification by licking the spoon after you pour the fudge into a baking pan.
Speedy Oven Fudge Prep time: 10 m
Cook time: 15 m
Recipe By: Beverly Bernholtz
"This rich fudge is a holiday favorite for me and my family. The recipe yields plenty of old-fashioned flavor with no-fuss preparation." - Beverly Bernholtz
1/2 cup milk
1 cup butter (no substitutes)
2/3 cup baking cocoa
2 pounds confectioners' sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup chopped nuts
Place the first four ingredients in the order listed in a 3-qt. baking dish (do not stir).
Place in a 350 degrees F oven for 15 minutes or until butter is melted. Note from Kris: I make this step even easier by placing the ingredients in a large microwave safe bowl and using the microwave's high setting for about a minute or until the butter is mostly melted. No oven required.
Carefully transfer to a mixing bowl. Note from Kris: I use the same bowl I used in the microwave.
Add vanilla; beat on high for 2 minutes. Stir in nuts.
Pour into a buttered 11-in. x 7-in. x 2-in. baking pan. Cool before cutting.
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED © 2021 Allrecipes.com Printed From Allrecipes.com 3/11/2021
Since I am the only person in the house who eats fudge, I cut the above recipe in half when I make it. I sometimes freeze a portion after it sets to have later. It still tastes great.
There ya, go Meg! Fudge!