Rhubarb is a vegtable, and plentiful this year

Rhubarb is a vegetable. It is also a good source of calcium, Potassium, and vitamin C. I grow Rhubarb and have put it in pies, jam, jelly, rhubarb cake, rhubarb sauce, and rhubarb crisp. Apparently, rhubarb is a superfood rich in antioxidants and vitamin K.

Rhubarb can also be used to make salsa. I have found a few recipes. It makes sense because if you add enough pepper it probably tastes like pepper. I might also try roasted rhubarb and rhubarb butter which isn’t butter at all but is made with rhubarb, honey, and orange juice and can be used as a sauce for pork or chicken. I may try it as a barbecue sauce or marinate or glaze the next time I grill chicken.

The best way to find new, exciting, nutritious or tasty recipes that include rhubarb is by asking Google.

Growing rhubarb is easy and can be one of the many joys of homeownership. Even on my inner city postage stamp-sized lot. If you don’t grow rhubarb you can buy it at the St. Paul Farmer’s market.



Pay Day type loans for real estate agents

Coins, moneyIf you are not a real estate agent you might not find this interesting. Sometimes a real estate agent will work with a client for six months or more before getting paid. Agents get paid by their broker only after a successful closing of a home sale.  Sometimes everything falls apart shortly before the closing through no fault of the agent or the agent’s clients . . which is why I am writing this.

Some lenders find out when an agent has a closing and they start sending the agent emails that go something like this: “we specialize in empowering real estate professionals like you by providing commission advances on pending sales or listings.”

Even if you were not born yesterday you know that the interest rates of those “commission advances” are huge. If for some reason the expected commission never arrives it may take the agent awhile to pay back the money advance plus interest.

People who survive as real estate agents have a cushion in the bank before they start. We learn how to manage our money so we can pay our bills in between commission checks. We learn to set money aside from each check for income taxes.  Agents who do not make enough to pay their bills need to either lower their expenses or take on additional work.

Most real estate agents and Realtors® are independant contractors working on a 100% commission basis. It is exactly like being a gig worker.definitely not for everyone and some days I wonder if it is for me but after awhile I just got used to it.

1st Half Property Taxes Due Today

If you own property in Minnesota first half property taxes are due today. For homeowners with mortgages, you are likely paying 1/12th of your property taxes each month. Your mortgage company pays the taxes when they are due from that money. Mistakes happen. It is a good idea to look up your address on your county website and make sure the taxes are paid.

Property taxes are payable to the county where the property is located. For help go to the county website.  If you own property in St. Paul go to the Ramsey county property tax site.

Have a merry property tax day! Let’s do this again on October 15th.

 money (2)

To mow or not to mow

long grass

I confess we mowed the lawn over the weekend because it was a mess. The “No Mow May” movement started a few years ago. The idea was to leave the lawn and let it grow to feed pollinators and to protect the insects that hybernated in the lawn.

It makes sense to let the lawn grow in the spring but I am not sure letting it go until June is good for anyone. Tall grasses and weeds isn’t a good look. If you mowed your lawn already you are not alone. Does letting the lawn grow really help the pollinators? Once the temperature gets above 50 degrees for a week or so I don’t think anything is hibernating in the lawn. The blooming trees, lilacs, and spring flowers provide food for the bees.

For the last couple of years the grass was brown and crunchy by mid-June due to drought.

Got data backup?


A public service message especially for those who use a computer for business.

For years I have used Carbonite. The service backs up all of the data on my computer every day. The data is stored in the cloud. Yesterday for the first time I recovered some files that I had accidentally deleted. I was ready to re-create one of them, but I didn’t have to.

If you use a computer you need to have a plan. Having a backup isn’t enough. You need to know where the files are, and how to restore a few files or all of the files.  Know how to restore the files to a new computer if the worst should happen.

Having a backup in the cloud adds an extra layer of protection. If my office burns to the ground my data is still safe. It is important to know where your data is at all times and to keep it safe.

There are numerous options for backups, some are available through accounts you already use, like iCloud, or OneDrive. The best backups are automatic backups that occur without human intervention.