29 Comments

  1. Vickie H.
    October 24, 2018 @ 11:14 am

    Well, well, well…..glad you got the van back…I’ve been wondering how that all shook out…but after reading your post about it and your plans for it, going forward, I can tell that you have officially gone “over the edge”. I say choose your battles: defer to your sensible husband on this issue and then move away from it and onto something that actually nurtures your soul. Just my 2 cents….BTW: love the idea of roasting then freezing all those tomatoes!

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  2. Edie Aser
    October 24, 2018 @ 11:33 am

    Where are the KITTEN PICTURES? I need kitten updates too.
    Love your blog 🙂

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  3. Kiki
    October 24, 2018 @ 11:47 am

    I have a (naturally European) combined oven/microwave and am totally happy with it. I don’t use a microwave enough to merit an extra buy and therefore am well served. I would hope that a conversion to the American system is possible.
    the stolen van-story is hilarious and totally OTT…. Get a new (old) one!!!! YOU need it and even though Paul surely looks great in goggles, it’s nonsense 😉

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  4. Terri
    October 24, 2018 @ 11:52 am

    I just saw a portable induction cooktop that comes with a nice sized cooking pot for $75 at COSTCO!
    Hmmm.

    And my mother kept our ancient GE stove in the basement, just for canning. It was so much cooler down there!

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  5. Tonya
    October 24, 2018 @ 12:19 pm

    I’m thinking it’s time for Paul to get a GFT in the form of a new vehicle.

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  6. Robin
    October 24, 2018 @ 12:29 pm

    I have stacked ovens….I wish one of them was also a microwave…..I even MORE wish that 1) they were stacked at a height that a 5’3” women could access each more safely – can’t see or reach into the top one without standing on tiptoes wearing oven mits that run up to my elbows, and 2) that BOTH ovens were self-cleaning….this decision had to have been made by a partner (probably but not absolutely sure, a man) who did not do chores such a oven cleaning….needless to say this decision was made by a previous owner. BUT while skeptical at first about the necessity of two, I use both frequently.

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  7. Morgan H.
    October 24, 2018 @ 12:54 pm

    Getting a vehicle with a trailer hitch and a trailer sounds like a sound investment for future Giant Fancy Things.

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  8. Robin Miller
    October 24, 2018 @ 1:07 pm

    Bad juju. Dump the van and get another. You NEED one for all the GFT’s!!! Reason snow. Cold. Frozen face riding Moped in winter. Inability to snuggle fluffernoodle fluff paws with frozen face and fingers. Unacceptable to Self. Or you could get a hybrid. We regularly play how much can we fit in our Pruck?! Hybrid that starts with Pr plus truck equals Pruck!! The looks! The sneers! The laughs!! The AWE and angels singing when yes, all of that DID fit!!! So. Get another van. It will make Self happy.

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  9. Alice Hanson
    October 24, 2018 @ 1:10 pm

    A good morning chuckle for sure! Thanks I need that! Love your blog! Wish I was there for the tomatoes! I could be a really good soul-chef!
    Smiles, Alice

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  10. Rhonda Payton
    October 24, 2018 @ 2:53 pm

    Tell us how you roast your tomatoes! And also, kittens please. And more also, you need a summer kitchen like my grandmother had. Add that to the list.

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  11. mck
    October 24, 2018 @ 3:25 pm

    Wait ! What! I missed out reading about the Van getting stolen??
    Where is it in the Blog?
    M.

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  12. Lisa
    October 24, 2018 @ 3:42 pm

    GORGEOUS dahlias. And my vote added for a new(ish) van.

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  13. Tammy
    October 24, 2018 @ 4:32 pm

    A song for you about Homegrown Tomatoes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fs7FpO2PFSs

    Reply

  14. Marianne in Mo.
    October 24, 2018 @ 4:50 pm

    I am totally sure that roasted tomatoes grown at home are the bomb dot com! But only put an appliance in the garage if you are totally sure you will never have a mouse invasion.
    Love your dahlias every year!
    I have only ever seen those Euro appliances when watching decorator shows on tv, or in House Beautiful magazines…..I bet a decorator would find you one at a very pretty penny!
    Poor van, I had a feeling she would be in bad shape when found. Happened to my brothers’ car way back in the 70’s, stripped of anything useable, seats included. Amazed yours still looked like a van, but still – destroyed. Let Paul find you a replacement, and mourn the loss in private. This from a woman who won’t give up her 2005 Mazda Tribute without a fight or seven! Unless he finds me a pristine ’97 Ranger, I will not be happy. Trying to sell me on a Tighuan (sp.) when he is not fond of his Passat – why? Because he wants to trade my T. AND his P. for the Tig!!!! Huh?
    Maybe you can find a thief who will steal you a van just like yours? Oh, wait, that won’t work at the license office. My bad.
    Enjoyed the videos of kitty laundry on Insta!

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  15. judy
    October 24, 2018 @ 5:49 pm

    We got a car back after my son conveniently left the key/remote laying on the front seat. The saddest thing found amongst all the fast food wrappers,beer cans and booze bottles was someone’s probably expensive dental bridge? If I Planted dahlias now in Va would I have flowers in 2019? That is,if I can live to 79? I know some readers think you are over thinking decisions,however having made so many expensive decisions regarding houses-ie-paint colors, brands of appliances,carpet colors etc. Better to go with the old saying “marry in haste,repent at leisure” and as we all know we wind up firmly married(pocketbook wise) to our mistakes.

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  16. Jill
    October 24, 2018 @ 5:53 pm

    I bought an (American) microwave/oven combo just last week. GE makes them.

    Now I need to learn how to roast tomatoes.

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  17. Pipistrello
    October 24, 2018 @ 7:58 pm

    Hello VEB, I’m new to these pages & am rather busy at present going through your entertaining Tales of Toil (just up to front porch finale, so ages off) but wanted to stop by to give you my two cents worth. Have you considered not having a microwave at all? It may sound Subversive but some of us of, ahem, more mature years and who live in the Antipodes, where we may speak the same language etc but Do Things slightly differently, get by perfectly well without. If you like the look of the dual ovens, maybe just go for precisely that? It doesn’t happen often but sometimes I do wish I had a second one because my Pyrolitic Bosch is otherwise occupied. Did you notice the keyword there? Pyrolitic. It will change your young life.

    My days of renovating are done (and luckily I didn’t even know what a blog was until the last paint-spattered item of clothing was consigned to the bin or a gazillion more hours would have been needed to Get the Job Done), and I shan’t be swayed into participating in the car-chat as I don’t even drive and we are indeed car-less now that the renos are over (negative interest, as you say), and kittens are photogenic and the reason the internet was invented but are Not My Thing, and I don’t even have a garden anymore as I live in a 100 sqm Art Deco apartment without even a balcony for a pot of herbs, so have no reason to be Loitering here at all. Except for your Words & Pics & Power to amuse. Nice blog!

    Reply

  18. Bethany Otto
    October 24, 2018 @ 8:14 pm

    We started our van with a screwdriver for a year or two. It finally conked out and was cost-prohibitive to fix “sigh”

    Reply

  19. liz
    October 24, 2018 @ 9:44 pm

    In my previous home I had double wall ovens by Thermador and the top one was also a microwave – I absolutely loved it . Your dahlias are beautiful – mine all got powdery mildew this year.

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  20. Cynthia D Turner
    October 24, 2018 @ 9:48 pm

    Miele makes a combination microwave and convection oven. It can do cook using either method or both at the same time. Although they are a bit on the expensive side, they perform beautifully.

    Reply

  21. Lori Sterling
    October 24, 2018 @ 10:37 pm

    First, your dahlia’s are AMAZING. I am so jealous. I live in Michigan where you have to ‘lift’ them, i.e., dig them out in the fall. No thank you.

    ***Second, be careful about buying a European appliance and your homeowners insurance! We purchased a microwave/regular oven that was NOT Canadian, we got it in the US and had it installed. After, we found out it does not meet the weird code of Canada, and that if the house burns down because of it, we are screwed. It was all too late, and no one knows it isn’t Canadian (Shhhh). Just giving you a head’s up that whatever you buy, make sure it is to the US code. Precautions.

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  22. Helen Glenn Court
    October 25, 2018 @ 9:59 am

    Photos of the kittehs in goggles, please. You’ve covered the dahlias and we are duly envious.

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  23. Maureen
    October 25, 2018 @ 1:11 pm

    I have a canning stove in my garage. Had to wire a special plug for it but it is TOTALLY WORTH THE HYPE. You can have a roasting stove if I can have a canning stove. At my old house it was in the basement, which was better than the garage but in this current old farmhouse, the basement is tiny and gross. So is the garage– but the stairs to the garage are less treacherous. Let’s go with that. Anyway, I highly recommend a second stove for whatever you need it for.

    Reply

  24. Mkitty
    October 25, 2018 @ 1:32 pm

    And now the only thing I can think about today is KITTENS! WITH! GOGGLES!

    Reply

  25. Jean Moore
    October 25, 2018 @ 3:47 pm

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=72Jo1tJrZpU

    If your budget will stomach it, I recommend the GE Advantium microwave which is also a convection oven and a Speed Cooker (which means it cooks with light). I once cooked four sweet potatoes in 9 minutes using the Speed Cooker mode.
    So I actually have two ovens now if needed. Just a suggestion.

    Reply

  26. Caroline
    October 25, 2018 @ 4:52 pm

    I NEED to see your kittens in goggles! So funny!
    Gorgeous dahlia photos.
    Seriously, buy another older van–they are the best! So very useful. We went without one for a while, but I am so happy to have one again, for hauling yard waste, for buying craigslist furniture, etc.

    Reply

  27. Bernie
    October 25, 2018 @ 8:43 pm

    I really did laugh out loud about European microwave ovens. Nine of us shared an Air B&B in Prague this summer,(prior to an amazing 7 day Prague to Vienna bike trip….I digress) and it took me about a half an hour to make microwave popcorn…I couldnt figure the darn thing out! BTW, I truly believe Prague is the Mecca for all GFT’s. You should plan a trip there…..OMG, beautiful!

    Reply

  28. mindy!
    November 1, 2018 @ 10:52 pm

    We have an American made combination microwave/convection oven that actually works!
    DACOR is the brand
    Convection microwave
    Miele also has one – German, more expensive, but all my other appliances are Miele and they are the best!

    http://www.dacor.com/products/collections/heritage/microwaves/discovery-24-convection-microwave

    Reply

  29. JeanFB
    November 7, 2018 @ 3:57 pm

    Sorry I have no info to share on the European oven combo, but I hope it works out! As for your moped/trailer idea… only if the trailer holds bigger gianter fancier things than the van! Otherwise, a used van that holds even more GFTs than your old one. Or maybe a pickup truck with a cab that can be removed if necessary??? 😉

    Reply

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