Saturday, December 24, 2011

The Indian In The Cupboard?

 Cupboard? Magic cabinet? Jukebox?
When I received this Christmas gift my mind went imideately to
The Indian In The Cupboard.
For those of you who don't know the story,
a young boy receives a magical cabinet for his birthday.  
A magical cabinet that transforms plastic people into
real, living, mini-sized people!
It's a  great movie that Nathan and I have enjoyed many times,
a kind of coming of age story.

Great cabinet/cupboard, I absolutely love it!
Is the front design a beetle?
Each section of the beetle(?) is divided with bent twigs.
What is the design on the top of the door?
So many questions.


What to use it for?
Tarot card collection?
Bathroom items?
Spices & herbs?
What is it's purpose?

31" tall X 15" wide X 6 3/4" deep
Cubbies are approximately 7" X 7"

The inside is unadorned,
 maybe adding postcard type photos/pictures to each cubby back
and maybe some sort of picture to the inside of the door?
Need to know what it's purpose is before adding anything though!

Also received,
one of The Hunger Games books, by Suzanne Collins,
I am so looking forward to reading this!
I've heard great things about this series.

Need your help on the cabinet!

Till next time,

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Seeking, Searching - Finding

Sorted & labeled

I've been searching for a good muffin recipe and google was not being very helpful.
I kept getting sweet muffin recipes, what I wanted was savory.
I guess it helps if you put savory in your search criteria.
 Cheese, bacon, corn, all very good
but not what I wanted either.
It finally hit me, try herb.
Better, but not great.
Then I found a plain muffin recipe at all with suggestions on fillings.
They were mostly sweet suggestions but at least I had a place to start.
They're called Best Ever Muffins, and I have to agree.
They baked up more like a biscuit than a cupcake or muffin,
but were still moist and light.
I did five variations, two with herbs and three with sweets. All mini muffins.

1. dill & red pepper flakes
2. rosemary, onion flakes & parmesan cheese
3. poppy seeds & raspberry jalapeño jam
4. nutmeg, cinnamon & carrot cake jam
5. nutmeg, cinnamon & quartered, large gumdrops
Numbers 3,4,5 - I put a small amount of batter into the cups first,
then the jam/gumdrop, then filled with more batter. I only used a scant
 teaspoon of the jams, or at least tried to.

Here's the recipe if you're interested.

Best Ever Muffins
2 cups flour                                                                                                 1 egg
3 tsp. baking powder                                                                                1 cup milk
1/2 tsp. salt                                                                                                 1/4 cup oil
3/4 cup sugar (I cut the sugar to 1/4 cup on all variations)

1. Preheat oven to 400° 
2. Combine flour, baking powder, salt & sugar in a large mixing bowl (add herbs if using).
Make a well in the center. Set aside.
3. In a glass measuring cup add the milk, oil & egg. Blend together.
(I added the milk first to the 1 cup measurement, then the oil till  the liquid was at 1 1/4 cups then the egg.
Saves washing so many utensils)!
4. Pour the wet into the dry & mix lightly, should be lumpy.
5. Spoon batter into oiled or paper lined muffin cups.
6. Bake for 25 minutes for regular size, 20 minutes for minis.
7. Remove pan from the oven onto a sturdy wire rack, let sit for 5 minutes, 
 then remove muffins from pan to a cooling rack.

In progress
The jams were made by my friend Loretta, (traded soap).

If you happen to be on my Christmas list....
 I guess you know what you're gettingJTJTJ

Till next time,

Make some expresso and taste test!

P.S. Was meeting someone at What-A-Burger
to deliver soap & saw this in the backseat of a guys car.
Giant piñata?
He was from Michigan.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Can You Bake?


In between product orders I've been making Christmas gifts.
Everyone loves food, especially easy to make food.
Pour into a bowl, add butter and eggs, what could be easier?

Brownie & Cookie Mixes
Sorted into families

Each row has a label at the end denoting which family it goes to.
The short rows will get sweet and savory breads, muffins, suckers,
chocolate confections ETC.
Cocoa Powder canister refashioned

Covered this canister with wallpaper from the thrift shop
and leftover ribbon. Just used Elmer's to adhere.
Perfect for the pretzels!

Don't tell anyone I spelled Biscotti wrong!
 I made recipe cards using purchased postcard stock.
The software program for the cards/labels was free from Avery
and the clipart was in my Microsoft Works Program.

There's lots of chocolate covered pretzels, peanut butter cups,
marshmallow treats, and haystacks waiting to be packaged.

Are you cooking/baking for Christmas?

Till next time,
Eat More Chocolate!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Handmade Christmas gifts

Canned brisket, Mocha cafe, Orange marmalade, Pickled beets, Pickled okra, Mango preserves

Recipe mag, Melting milk chocolate, white chocolate, Butterscotch, Pink stuff, Finished peanut butter cups

Handmade product labels

I'm having fun!!!!
Till next time,

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Need Some Warmth So I'm Making Biscotti

Oh My....

It's cold in this house.

I noticed it late yesterday evening and wondered,
why isn't the heater kicking on.

I'm thinking,

maybe the hubby programmed the thermostat too low?
I checked, it was 65 degrees. It’s suppose to be 69 degrees.

Still thinking…

Ok, I’ll bypass the preset and take the chill off.
The heater does not click on at all.
Not good.
Hubby is already asleep, no help there.
So I throw another quilt on the bed,
get into some warm jammies, snuggle under
and decide to worry about it tomorrow.

Tomorrow is today.

I informed the hubby of the dilemma this morning.
His advice?
Let’s just wait and see if it gets any better this evening.
Like I said,


My advise?
Call someone today and set up an appointment for tomorrow.

See if it gets better?
It doesn’t have the flu.

By the way, it didn’t get better.
It’s still 65 degrees and the Tech will be here in the morning.
So I turned the oven on and made some biscotti.

My first time, obviously I need more practice.
It tastes super yummy but ….
I ate too much.
Now I have a tummy ache.

Till next time,
Trust me, it won't get better!

Friday, November 25, 2011

No Turkey Day Just Yet!!

Our family Thanksgiving will be on Sunday at Steve's Mom's house.
I took the free day to ready for our last show of the season,
get the newest Boutique order together
and also to work on handmade Christmas gifts.
I have a lot of ideas for cookie/ brownie/ biscotti mixes in a jar,
chocolate coated pretzels, handmade candy, flavored coffee creamer etc.
Also sewing up a few things.

First up,
for the show,
mini, reversible stockings, free with a $25.00 purchase.

To be used in place of a gift bag.
Drew the template on computer paper and got into my fabric stash.
 Each stocking took about 1/4 yard of fabric per side,

In progress

finished size is 9 1/2" tall by 7 1/2" wide

Time to tuck one into the other.

Finished stockings.

Next up are the Christmas gifts.
Placemats & napkins.

Side 1

Other side.

Up-cycled jacket as a dish towel.

Ugly jacket, cool fabric.

Cool dish towel.

Wire basket.
Found this cool wire mesh basket in a thrift shop.
A little spray paint made it good as new!
 I plan on putting a loaf of home made sweet bread in it.
Maybe put a cloth napkin first, then the bread, then tie with a ribbon or two?

Boutique order.

Mini soaps.

Half size bars that are encased in a cello bag.
I market these as stocking stuffers at Christmas.
In the spring they become camping/travel bars.

If you have any thoughts for handmade gift items
please share. I need more ideas!

Till next time,

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Bustin Arse (AKA, making product)

I know, I know, I've been absent in blog land!!!
The fall shows have taken over, 
one more to go and I'm finished for the year!

The Texas Country reporter show was fantastic.
We sold mega amounts of product (good) .
Yesterday we had a smaller show
which depleted my inventory even more (bad).

So now I'm scrambling to replace said product
 for the Christmas Market in December.

Today I made five - twenty bar batches of soap
and have plans on making four more batches
during the week.
I'ts doable, and I'll just squeak in
under the cure time allotment.

Nathan is due in on the 18th so I shall enlist his
help on making and packaging the other products.
He's pretty well versed on the workings of the soap co.
and has even told me that when I die he's taking over!
I guess he thinks he's Brad Pitt in - Fight Club!

Don't remember if I mentioned...
Got another wholesale account,
Maybe soon I can leave the surreal world of people-eaters
and concentrate on the homestead duties.  
Maybe even get to bed at a decent hour?
There's always hope...

Oh yeah,
I rolled out a new product this last week.
Brown Sugar Body Polish!!!
(Think sugar scrub with a fancy name).

Brown Sugar Body Polish
Well it's after nine here in Texas
and I do have to work tomorrow...
I'll try to catch up on everyone's doings at lunch
during the week, can't wait to see what you' all
have been up to!!!

Till next time,
Bubble, bubble, toil and trouble!
Oh wait,
no trouble, just toil and bubbles!



Friday, October 28, 2011

Le Pumpkin Genie

It's that time again....

The company's annual pumpkin decorating contest.

Steve and I did decorate a pumpkin.....
Just don't think I'll be taking it to work.
I think I would rather debut him at my soap show on Saturday.

I googled decorating ideas, and BHG had pumpkins decorated
with old, rusty, junk, hardware components.
Right up my alley as I have old,
 rusty junk, hardware components in my stuff stash.

Le Pumpkin Genie...

The old, rusty, junk, hardware components, from top to bottom.

The hair swirl:
I don't know where it came from or what the hair swirl is.
I think these might be decoration for behind a drawer knob.
Old, painted screws.
Glass drawer pull from Steve's grandpa's stash.
Old painted screws.
Bent, rusty cabinet hinge.
Also from Steve's grandpa's stash.
Old, painted screws.
Rusty handles from screen door, AKA/Alien Room Divider.
Old, painted screws.
Genie Lamp:
Tea Pot, I think I got this at First Monday
Spotted Plate:
McNutts, purchased at Bygones, a locall antique store.

What do you think?

What's Your Wish?
Gotta go,
I'm getting the last minute stuff together
for Saturday's craft show.
Wish me luck.

Till next time,

Saturday, October 22, 2011

MOO, First attempt!


Today I needed to make soap and other products for our upcoming shows,
but I really wanted to cook some of that cow….

What to do, what to do?

Both of course!

I started by getting some of the said cow ready for the slow cooker.
I had the pikes peak roast defrosting in the fridge,
along with some Chicken thighs.

I had googled recipes for this cut, aka heel of round,
and they were all pretty much the same.
Steve and I aren’t big beef eaters because of the cost,
so I’m counting on google and you guys to help me on my way
through cooking this cow.

With help from The Texas Beef Council and
I was ready to go.
Picture from Culinary Arts

I deviated from the original recipe due to not having the proper ingredients.
Here’s what I did and it turned out super tender and flavorful.

4 lbs. Pikes Peak Roast

1 cup canned tomato juice
1 cup canned tomato sauce
1 cup cider vinegar
2 tbsp. lemon juice
1 tbsp. prepared brown mustard

2 tsp. dry mustard (I didn’t have dried mustard, so I used mustard seeds. I ground the seeds with the salt and sage with my mortar and pestle)
2 tsp. dried sage
1 tbsp. salt
1 tsp. lemon pepper
1 tsp. Super Nate spice (I think this batch was rosemary, lemon balm, thyme & oregano)

Small hand full of dried ground garlic
Small hand full of dried ground onion
2 beef bullion cubes

Olive oil for browning roast

Preheat slow cooker on high.
In a large skillet, heat three turns of the pan of olive oil on medium heat.
Add first five dry ingredients. Using tongs, brown roast on all sides in olive oil/herb mixture.
Transfer roast to slow cooker and cover.

Add last three dry ingredients along with all the liquid ingredients to the skillet.
Bring to a simmer stirring constantly.
Transfer liquid to the slow cooker.
Cover the slow cooker, reduce temperature to low and cook for about 6 or 7 hours.


I cooked the chicken thighs in my electric roaster with
lemon balm, lemon pepper, canned bean sprouts and a little water.

I wanted some cookies too so
I made up some brown sugar drop cookie dough.

I split the dough,
half a batch with grated white chocolate and dried coconut,
the other half with raisins and dried cranberries.

Between making the roast, chicken,
soap and the other Blue Moon products
I ran out of time on the cookies.
(It’s still too hot during the day to turn on the oven).
I just saran wrapped the cookie dough bowls, refridgerated and I will
bake them in the morning when it's cooler.

I just love cookies for breakfast!!!

You' all probably have way more experience cooking beef than I have
so feel fee to Email me with any recipes/suggestions or posts.

Can't wait for the burn ban to be lifted
so I can try my hand at grilling a steak!
(We don't have a normal bbq grill).
Don't even ask!

Till next time,

Beef, it's "what's for dinner"!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Cow

Steve and I have been wanting to raise our own beef .
Not just any beef either.
Yummy, hormone free, grass fed beef!
Steaks, roasts, ribs, that’s what I’m talking about!

That requires a fence to keep said beef, aka cow in
and the cattle rustlers out.
The fence is about ¼ done.
Seems the most important thing at the time was to
make the property unappealing to would be crooks.

Phase one,
the fence down the driveway with a gate.
If you want in bad enough, you’ll have to go cross country.
We now need to complete phases two through
four to actually keep a cow or two.
Go figure!

Opportunity knocks…
Friend of a friend has cows, hormone free, grass fed.
Brangus? (Brahma, Angus mix)
We are now the proud owners of  ½ a Brangus.
Or were,
it’s now resting quite comfortably in my freezer.
All 156 pounds of it!
(Other ½ split with a friend).

What can I say?
I’ve had a steak or two at the restaurant on special occasions
in my entire adult life, I don’t ever recall purchasing
a steak at the market.
Is that sad or what?

The rundown.
15 ½ lbs-hamburger, 1 pack-brisket, 3 packs-chuck roast, 2 packs-arm roast,
1 pack-pikes peak roast, 1 pack-rump roast,
7 packs-round steak, 3 packs-short ribs,
4 packs-rib eye steaks, 5 packs-t-bone steaks, 7 packs-sirloin steaks,
1 pack-soup bones, aka dog bones.

$381.25 or $2.44 average, per pound.

The Cow!!!!
It's our first time,
did we do good?
Till next time, moo...I mean,


Hope we don't experience any
power outages this winter...

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Life & Soap Shows

Nathan's pomegranate tree


It's soap show time!!!

You never know what is going to sell.
For the last several years, our dominant category in all products was floral
and that's where I concentrated my efforts.
The trend this past spring was fruits and spices, seems that trend is continuing.
Our demographic is widening, we're all over the page now.
Customers that were hard sells previously are now purchasing our products.
Not just the soaps either, all our products are selling better.
Personally, I've been feeling the earthy vibe for awhile.

Something I have noticed is,
when I'm formulating a new scent, and purchasing
the scents for it from my local supplier,
a few months later they are selling "that" scent pre-blended.
I've even noticed them naming the scent pretty close to, or the same as mine.
I order under my Co. name, pretty easy
to go to my site and see what I'm up to.
 My husband says I should be flattered.
Again, whatever!!

Yesterday's show was great with lots of sales and today was spent
making more soap, etc.
I have four more shows for the year and I foresee my immediate future
filled with soap bubbles.

Oh yea,
I was contacted yesterday by a local B&B for soap.
We shall see where that goes.

My morning view from the surreal world (work)
Till next time,

Monday, October 3, 2011

Jesus H Christ!

Please excuse my language!
Just when I'm thinking things are settling down
 around here all hell breaks loose.

We haven't had any wildfires as of late so I thought,
OK, back to normal....

Ellis County...
Ennis has been all over the news.
Seems a teacher at the high school has TB.
Every student is being tested along with their parents and siblings.
They're even testing last years graduating class.
How scary is that?

Next on the list....
A massive fire broke out in Waxahachie today at a chemical plant
across the street from where my husband Steve works.
My daughter works at Target in Waxahachie,
five miles away from where the fire was. 
Everyone in about a ten mile radius was evacuated.
Fire departments from all over were called in.

Something I thought was interesting...
The water runoff from the fire was contained and collected.
I didn't know such a thing was possible.
Best to be contained and treated rather than be in the creeks and lakes.

the EPA is out there conducting tests.
How safe is it to breathe?
What about the flora and fauna?
Lots of livestock and crops in this area!
I could see the fire from my deck and I live twenty miles away.

Imagine the job loss...

How was your day?

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

What Have I Been Up To?



Well let me just say, I've been a very busy bee.
The last few months I've been ramping up soap production
in anticipation of our fall shows. That done, next on the list
was all the of the other products.
I've finished the bath oils, lip balms and bath teas
now all I need are the body butters.
The jars came in yesterday so I'll be tackling those on Saturday.
I try to time everything out so that when I go to the shows
everything is as fresh as possible.
 Our first show is October 8th which is just around the corner!

We've been doing a bit of canning too.
Darn dial up, kicked me off, where was I?
Oh yeah, canning.
Sunday we pressure canned about 8 -1/2 pints of cooked beef
and at least that much or more of corn.
When the sweet potatoes go on sale at thanksgiving
I plan on making sweet potato butter.
Beverly, at Beverly's back porch posted a recipe
that really sounds yummy!
Here's her link.

Time to make more business cards and all the other paperwork
that goes with doing shows.
Till next time,

Sunday, September 18, 2011

I killed The Mailbox

Yesterday my local market was advertising
chicken thighs and legs for .69 a pound and pork roast for $1.68 a pound,
both great prices so I was all over it.
Steve and I headed into town to take advantage.
We made it to the store, loaded up on the deals and
proceded to the checkout.

No checkbook, no ATM card, no cash.

I explain the circumstances to the clerk and ask,
 "can you wheel our cart into the cooler till we get back"?
"No problem she says".

We get back home and hubby says
"just pull in the drive and I'll walk to the house so we don't have to open the gate".

10 minutes later...
Checkbook in hand, he hops back into the truck and I back out.

Let me just say,
I've never backed out of the driveway before.
Seems there's a mailbox right behind the driveway!
I know it only brings bills but let's have a little respect!

So what we ended up with was,
what should have been a 24 mile drive turned into
a 48 mile drive and one dead mailbox!
I guess we paid a little more for the "deals" than we expected.

Till next time, be kind to your mailbox,

Pattypan Squash Bread

Things have cooled off a bit here, and last night we finally got some rain.
Everything still looks fried but one can hope!
I've been wanting to bake,
cookies, bread, enchiladas, whatever!

Squash bread and jalapeno cornbread
Brendie over at Bregle Estate has been tempting me
with her baked Maori bread,
which sounds super yummy, and I'm dying to give it a try.
I've only turned my oven on once or twice since about June,
and I'm thinking, it's about time.
I can't do the Maori bread just yet (needs to ferment) but I can do a some quick breads.
I made a squash bread for our breakfast's during the week and
a jalapeno cornbread to go with our ham and beans.
So here goes.
Squash Bread

2 cups flour/divided use
1 cup brown sugar
1 tbsp. baking powder
1 tsp. ground cinnamon.
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/8 tsp. ground ginger or ground cloves

1 cup canned pumpkin*
1/2 cup milk
2 eggs
1/3 cup shortening

1/2 cup chopped walnuts*
1/2 cup raisins*

 Preheat oven to 350° In a large mixing bowl, combine 1 cup of the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda and spices.

Add pumpkin, milk, eggs and shortening.
Beat with an electric mixer on low speed till blended, then on high speed for 2 minutes.
Add remaining 1 cup flour and beat well.
Stir in nuts and raisins with a spatula.

Pour batter into a greased 9x5x3 inch loaf pan.
(Only grease the bottom and 1/2 inch up the sides,
lets the bread rise straight up, not out and over the edges, trust me).
Bake @ 350°  for about 1 hour.
Cool (in loaf pan) on wire rack for 10 minutes, remove from pan and cool thoroughly.
Wrap and store overnight before slicing.

*I didn't have canned pumpkin, but I did have cooked, frozen patty pan squash that I thawed, drained, then pureed in the food processor. You can use any cooked squash or sweet potato.
*You can use any chopped nuts.
*I used 1/4 cup raisins, 1/4 cup currants.
I have also done this recipe with dried, chopped apricots.

Squash bread
While I was in the freezer I spotted mixed, cooked greens.
I'm thinking,
pureed greens to replace the squash
dried rosemary, thyme, lemon balm or basil to replace the spices
diced, drained, canned pineapple or dried, diced apricots to replace the fruit
and diced ham or chicken to replace the nuts.
What do you think, Yucky or yummy?

Till next time, eat your veggies,

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Can Texas Be Saved From Stupid People?


There’s a little town named Reagor Springs,
that I pass through everyday on my way to and from work .
It has a couple of beer stores and that’s about it.
This was the go to place back in the day if you wanted beer.
 Just a little town situated between two bigger, dry towns.
The bigger towns are wet now, so Reagor doesn’t have much going on anymore.

But, if you look at it from another perspective, it really has quite a bit going on.

In the early spring this town is a beehive of activity.
 Farmers are in the fields, riding in giant, cab enclosed tractors.
They’re tilling under the winter’s green cover
in preparation for the summer’s cash crops, corn, maize and cotton.

Round about late July, early August, they started harvesting
the corn and maize. Even with the drought, I still saw
18 wheelers in the fields loading up for the trip to the gain mill.

Cotton field, May I think.
Now it’s cotton harvest time.
Cotton strippers are in the fields along with huge rectangle shaped boxes.
The boxes are like trash compactors.
The cotton strippers feed the cotton into the box and the box squishes it.
Pretty cool!

So now the fields are filled with these huge bales of cotton.
Future blue jeans and t shirts I suspect!


Yesterday, 250 acres of these fields were caught up in a wild fire.
Nothing you could see from the highway, it was back in, on the FM road.
My oldest grandson’s dad, uncles and papa farm some of these fields.
I don’t know if it was their’s or not, or even if there were crops on the land.

Today I was driving to work looking at all those bales, and thinking.
I hope they get them out soon, before anything else happens!
The farmers are depending on the money these bales are going to bring in.

What the hell...

“Did you see that“, I asked my husband?
Before he could answer I said,
“I don’t believe it, whoever is driving that car just threw out a lit cigarette”!


I’m thinking, are you stupid? Don’t you know there was a fire here yesterday?
I sped up enough to get a plate number, and then passed to see who was driving.

Just some random lady, 40ish, no one I know.
But then again, she could live in my area.
She might even be driving down my road on a daily basis.
Her lit cigarette butts flying out her car window toward my house!

Steve and I both have a bug-out-bag in the cab of the truck,
clothes, toiletries, passports, etc.
I pack the laptop in the briefcase and take it with me to work everyday.
We’ve even packed a medium size cooler
with about 2 weeks worth of non-perishable food,
that’s locked and chained in the pickup bed.

You never know!!!

Till next time,

Just heard thunder, went outside to see,
 there's a big black cloud over the house and I felt raindrops!
Could it really be?

Monday, September 12, 2011

The Excellent Adventure...Part 1

Lovey Puppy and Friends were getting 
bored with going to Grandma's house.
Bored with making soap, bored with cooking, bored with sewing. 

They had more fun when Grandma played....
They loved to watch The Little Boy and Grandma shoot the bow and arrows,
sword fight with their sticks and skip rocks at the creek.
Grandma wasn't very good at any of these things...
But there was one thing she was good at.
Story telling.

Magic wands, far away places, evil kings, flying dragons, enchanted forests...
Grandma knew about these things!

Lovey Puppy and Friends would listen when Grandma read to the Little Boy.
They imagined themselves riding the dragons,
 fighting the evil kings and camping in the enchanted forests.
They wanted an adventure like the ones Grandma told about in the stories!

But how to make it happen?
The Little Boy did have a magic wand.....

And a flying dragon!!!

Lovey Puppy and friends started making plans!

Till next time,

Friday, September 9, 2011

Lovey Puppy...

There once was a little boy who couldn’t hear very well.
Since the little boy couldn’t hear very well,
that meant he couldn’t speak very well either.
His mother could understand him but not anyone else.
This made the little boy very frustrated and angry.

Puzzled, the mother took the little boy to the doctor.

Oh my, said the doctor….

The little boy had to go to the hospital several times.
Hospitals can be very scary, especially to a little boy.

The little boy’s grandma Jackie brought him a little stuffed puppy.
She told him, this is a Lovey Puppy, whenever you’re scared,
just hug her and she’ll make you feel better.

Through the years, the little boy has taken his lovey Puppy everywhere.
Movies, both grandma’s house's, dads…
Where ever the little boy is, Lovey Puppy is.

Lovey Puppy likes video games, movies, cooking, sword fighting,
whatever the little boy likes, Lovey Puppy Likes.

Along the way Lovey Puppy has made several friends,
Felix The Cat, Mr. Peanut, Casper The Friendly Ghost,
Mr. Pony, Robo Man, Purr Other Puppy and several Knights.

Lovey Puppy can be mischievous though….

Imagine the little boy’s surprise when he got to grandma’s house
and Lovey Puppy and friends weren’t in the suitcase!

 They were on an adventure, an Excellent Adventure!
 Till next time,

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


My landscape

The dogs were acting crazy yesterday,
there was no bad weather, just wind.
I went out with them several times to "check on things"
but didn't see anything, Lady just kept pacing.
I just figured the tropical storms were blowing in rain.
So I went about my day, making soap, blogging ETC. 

When Steve got home from work he asked me,
"have you been outside"?
"Well, yes I said, sort of, why"?
I followed him out back.
Oh crap!
Fire towards Ennis, about five miles away,
fire towards Alma same distance away.
I had been going out the front door.
The wind was blowing the smoke and smell away from our house.
I never even heard sirens!
Sunday there were wild fires in Corsicana, about twenty miles south of us.

Our area is all open land, no farming going on up here,
lots of cattle, some mesquite and cedar trees and brush, lots of brush!
Pretty dry up here.

This is how dry we are!

I went outside this morning. (I'm On a vacation day).
Hazy, smoky smelling. I don't hear any sirens.....YET!
Steve just called from work,
said they got an automated call from the Sheriff's office stating,
 all of Ellis Co. is smoky, hazy, don't call unless you see flames!
Wildfires are everywhere, Fort Worth, Austin, Oklahoma!

On my drive to and from work, (Ennis to Waxahachie to Red Oak)
I see patch after patch of burnt grass on the side of the highway.
Are people throwing lit cigarettes out their car windows?
There was a roadside fire on Thursday, 
about a quarter mile from where Steve works. (Waxahachie)
The nursery is surrounded by about a five acre mini forest, so you
can imagine how ugly that could have been!
The fire department put it out before it hit the trees.

Lady's not acting crazy so I guess we're ok?
But, I do have a bug-out-bag sitting by the front door!

Till next time, stay safe,

Monday, September 5, 2011

The Lion , The Witch and The Wardrobe

So I lied, there is no Lion or Witch, just "The Wardrobe"!
*** :) ***

I found this lovely piece in an antique store about five years ago.
We had "house guests" at the time and needed more closet space.
It still has the original hanging rod, 
with weird hook things that slide across the rod,
 kind of like bathroom robe hooks.
(wasn't sure how to use those) 
We just slid them to the side and used wire hangers.
There wasn't enough clearance between the rod
and upper shelf for plastic hangers.


"House guests" are gone, so now it's a pantry.
I didn't want to alter the piece so we just put a shelving unit inside.
When things are on sale at the market I buy extra and store in  "The Wardrobe".
Those cans of tomatoes, tuna, and such were really a good price!

I've had these forever, cheap, Wally World bookshelves.
There's one on either side of the kitchen island.
I don't know if you can see but,
 I had to put a piece of wood between each shelf for support.
Still room for a few more jars!
(Ignore the 5 gal. buckets in the background, that's just my soap oils).

This is the only closet in the house, although it is pretty big.
No, we don't have that much coffee,
I save coffee cans for food storage silly:)
More on sale food items in here also.
Bulk purchases are divided up into smaller containers.
Beans, rice, sugar, flour.....
I scored a large, laundry basket full of jars, canisters
and popcorn tins for $5.00 at the thrift store a few months back.
Plastic shoe boxes also come in handy.

Something I have noticed at the market as of late.
Staple food items?
Not really being put on sale.
 It's mostly, what I like to call, "the garbage food".
Pre-seasoned, pre-cooked fast food, just heat and eat.
Then there's the plastic packages of meat swimming in marinades,
and the plastic tubs of pre-sliced veggies and fruits.

I don't know, I guess if you work, have three kids with after school activities,
get home late, ETC, ETC, ETC,
maybe this is your only option besides Mickey Dees?
Seems to me, for the price of the fast food stuff,
you could probably hire a sweet, grandma type, retired person
to come over and cook wholesome food for your family.
I'm just saying....

Please, don't tell "The People Eater" or "The Food Police"
about my food stash!!

Oh yeah, weird again,
have the check- out clerks at your market been
commenting/asking about your bulk purchases?
They have at mine!

Need to go make soap, shows start in October.

Till next time, happy hoarding,