Thursday, November 26, 2009


Oh so much to be thankful for.~An Active Husband who inspires me to move around more and reminds me that I'm... "tougher than I think I am".

~Kids with a sense of Humor who are quick witted like their Dad and keep me laughing.

~Tylenol Oh what would I do without it?

~My Faith The Savior Jesus Christ is a constant strength to me. I am blessed in a multitude of ways every single day by a Heavenly Father who knows me.

~A Missionary Son Thing 1 is strong and faithful and courageous. I love reading his letters every week watching him grow and learn. He is my example.

~Friends in real life and in blog life. You strengthen me and make me want to be a better person.

~The Sun Fashionista and I watched the sun rise while we did yoga this morning. Just kinda makes you want to breathe deeper and work harder.

The list could go on all day and through tomorrow.
Happy Thanksgiving.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


From Grandma Hazel

If you would make the wrong things right
Begin at home, there lies a lifetime toil.
Weed your own garden fair, for all men's sight,
Before you plan to till another's soil.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


From Grandma Lillian

This is the beginning of a new day.
God has given me this day to use as I will.
I can waste it or use it for good.
What I do today is important because
I am exchanging a day of my life for it.
When tomorrow comes this day will be gone forever.
Leaving something in its place that
I have traded for it.

I want it to be good, not evil, success, not failure.
In order that I may not forget the
price I paid for it.

Monday, November 23, 2009

The Legacy of Hands

I remember once as a child my Aunt Joyce telling me I had pretty hands. She may have said it to try and inspire me to stop biting my fingernails, or maybe she believed it. I think I believed her because every now and then I think about that compliment and I look at my hands and wonder.

When sitting in a church meeting recently I looked at the hands of a younger woman sitting on one side of me with her young, soft, smooth elastic skin. Then I looked to the other side of me at the hands of an elderly woman with wrinkled skin and arthritic bent knuckles. Then I looked at my own hands with loosening skin and a multitude of little scars because my own klutziness often exhibits itself with wounds on my hands. I used to be embarrassed when comparing my hands to the hands of a younger woman, but then looking at the older ones I realized how much more beautiful those hands were. I am no longer embarrassed of my hands but grateful for them and the opportunities I have had to really use them.

~ Vanilla ~

The Legacy of Hands
by Barbara S. Newbold

I look at the shape of my hands,
fingers, callouses, and lines;
And the years trace back
through ancestors and loved ones,
And I wonder....

Whose hands do mine resemble?
Whose pattern did my square hands follow?
Where did my round finger tips come from?
Who had the deep lines that cross my palm?

Who loved to feel the paintbrush
in their fingers as I do?
Who loved to touch a child's soft hair,
Or stroke a cheek?
Or feel an elderly beloved hand
clasped in theirs?
Whose hands loved the feel of
smooth piano keys under their palm?
Whose cared for the ill,
and prepared bread for their neighbor?
My hands feel the penetration of Spirits gone by....

Whose hands grasped the rail of an unsteady vessel,
As it tossed the sea toward the promised land?
Or pushed a dusty wagon across the prairie?
Whose fingers first turned the pages of the sacred records?

My hands are created from the determined,
caring service and love,
Handed to me from generations gone by.....
A legacy to be nurtured, appreciated,
and carefully passed on
To the children of the future.

by Barbara S. Newbold

Happy Thanksgiving Week.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

On Giving Thanks

George Washington's First
Thanksgiving Day Proclamation

As I was searching my family cookbook for some good traditional foods for Thanksgiving, I came across this Proclamation given by George Washington in October 1789. After coming across this treasure I researched it a bit.
Here at "Archiving Early America"
I learned that people in the colonies had been having Thanksgiving celebrations for many years throughout the year but it was with this proclamation that it became "designated by the new national government."

General Thanksgiving

By the PRESIDENT of the United States of America

Source: The Massachusetts Centinel
Wednesday, October 14, 1789
Also found in Past and Present Recipes
~ Family Favorites
Click HERE to see the original document.

Whereas, it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor, and;

Whereas, both Houses of Congress have, by their joint committee, requested me to recommend to the people of the United States a day of PUBLICK THANKSGIVING and PRAYER, to be observed by acknowledging with grateful hearts the many and signal favors of Almighty God, especially by affording them an opportunity peaceably to establish a form of government for their safety and happiness;

NOW THEREFORE, I do recommend and assign THURSDAY, the TWENTY-SIXTH DAY of NOVEMBER next, to be devoted by the people of these States to the service of that great and glorious Being who is the beneficent author of all the good that was, that is, and that will be; that we may then all unite in rendering unto Him our sincere and humble thanks for His kind care and protection of the people of this country previous to their becoming a nation; for the signal and manifold mercies and the favorable interpositions of His providence in the course and conclusion of the late war; for the great degree of tranquility, union, and plenty which we have since enjoyed;-- for the peaceable and rational manner in which we have been enable to establish Constitutions of government for our safety and happiness, and particularly the national one now lately instituted;-- for the civil and religious liberty with which we are blessed, and the means we have of acquiring and diffusing useful knowledge;-- and, in general, for all the great and various favours which He has been pleased to confer upon us.

And also, that we may then unite in most humbly offering our prayers and supplications to the great Lord and Ruler of Nations and beseech Him to pardon our national and other transgressions;-- to enable us all, whether in publick or private stations, to perform our several and relative duties properly and punctually; to render our National Government a blessing to all the people constantly being a Government of wise, just, and constitutional laws, discreetly and faithfully executed and obeyed; to protect and guide all sovereigns and nations (especially such as have shewn kindness unto us); and to bless them with good governments, peace, and concord; promote the knowledge and practice of true religion and virtue and the increase of science among them and us; and, generally, to grant unto all mankind such a degree of temporal prosperity as He alone knows to be best.

GIVEN under my hand, at the city of New-York, the third day of October, in the year of our Lord, one thousand seven hundred and eighty-nine.
(signed) George Washington
Click HERE to see the original document.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

6WS Fun to say, Fun to hear!

It doesn't matter if you're saying the word itself or one that it defines...

Fun to say, Fun to hear!!

A word that imitates the sound it represents

Do you have some favorite onomatopoeia?
How about some good old Batman sounds?
Those crazy words that flashed on the screen...

And now for some
"Our deeds still travel with us from afar,
And what we have been makes us what we are."
George Eliot

More Six Word Fun
with Call me Cate

Friday, November 20, 2009

Amelia Bedelia

Woman's sphere is bounded only
By the talents God has given
And her duty lies wherever
Earth can be made more like Heaven.

Amelia Bedelia what a wonderful girl.
She has a problem free philosophy, Amelia Bedelia.
She tends to make everyone around her crazy until she cooks something and then they are so taken by her kitchen magic that they always want her around.

One Amelia Bedelia situation that I remember often is when she was asked to dust the furniture. Completely confused by this request, she finds "dusting powder" which is actually face powder and spreads it gleefully around the living room.
What is it with the word dust?

Recently I posted a recipe that said to 'grease' the pan and 'dust' with flour. I know this means to sprinkle all purpose flour over the shortening that I have carefully spread over my pan.

But... when I dust the living room, I want to remove the dust and polish the wood. Dust is also the stuff that collects on said furniture thus needing to be removed. It's also the stuff flying through the air on a windy day in Idaho.

And how about grease? It's something that splatters all over your favorite shirt if you forget to wear an apron when you cook bacon. It's something you put on a hinge to get it to stop creaking. It's something that has something to do with cars. And it's the process used to spread shortening onto your pan before 'dusting' with flour to keep your cake from sticking. Oh, and it's also what shortening or it's counterpart is often called.

What a crazy language we speak.

Amelia Bedelia (because you can't just say Amelia...) falls into these ruts all the time. Remember when she teaches the students to plant light bulbs instead of tulip bulbs?
Or sprays water all over the bridal shower?Do you think there's a language out there without these kinds of confusing word plays? What are some words you've run into lately that play those kinds of games?
Do you have a favorite Amelia Bedelia conundrum?

(did I use that word correctly? It's such a fun word I just had to use it.
Another favorite: onomatopoeia. Try it... it's fun for the tongue.
And so is what it means!)

Thursday, November 19, 2009


This is the cover of a wonderful cookbook. I dig into it at least once day to find a long time favorite or something new that I know I will like.

This cookbook is written with love by the women (and some additions from the men) in my family. There are seven amazing women in my family, all sensational cooks, and this cookbook is a treasure trove of goodness from each of our kitchens. Rarely do the recipes I post come from anywhere else.

As my Mother and sister were creating this book they also added some other stuff.

Just like no cookie is complete without the vanilla, our cookbook wouldn't be complete without the wonderful filler placed carefully into this family collectible.

I will be adding a new section to my blog called Vanilla. Each day there will be a little tidbit of love and wisdom gained from my family cookbook.

Today's Vanilla comes from the opening page of:
Past and Present Recipes~Family Favorites

From the Kitchens of:
Jenny P
Jenny J

Illustrations by Rhonda
(yup, my awesome sil created that cute cover with crayons!)

Thanks for the smile you gave me today
You'll never know how it paved my way
With joy, how it made everything right.
Thanks, now I'm not afraid of the night
But I held it close the long day through.
You kind words made me brave in a trial
Thanks for your kindness
Thanks for your smile.

I'm looking forward to sharing the comforting taste of vanilla with you from
the pages of my beloved family cookbook.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Fall Recipes

On Monday of this week, Amber asked for fall recipes for her weekly installment of Friend Makin' Monday's.

Obviously, I didn't make it in time, but it got me thinking of the foods I like to make at this cozy time of year.

One of my most favorite fall recipes is "Best Apple Pudding Cake"

The recipe is from my mom who is the best cook EVER. She can make a wonderful meal out of almost nothing and when she comes to my house she always loves what I make. I want to be a mom like that.

Funny thing is that when my Dad proposed to that 21 year old girl 50 years ago on a hill overlooking the Logan Valley, her first response was, "I can't cook." Oh boy did that ever change. Three daughters, three daughters in law and eleven granddaughters later we all aspire to cook like her.

And now, the recipe you've all been waiting for~

~~~~~~~can I get a drum roll please

... Apple Pudding Cake ...
2 cups flour
2 tsp soda
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp salt
2 cups sugar
1 cup margarine or butter
2 eggs
4 large apples ~grated
1 cup chopped walnuts
Cream the sugar and butter,add eggs, then add grated apples. Add dry ingredients and nuts. Grease 9X13" pan and dust with flour. Bake at 350 for 45 minutes.

... Carla's Caramel Sauce ...
1 cup real butter (salted sweet cream)
1 cup brown sugar
2 Tbsp cornstarch
1/2 tsp vanilla
2 cups cold water
Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until thick. Serve warm over apple cake.

This could very possibly be the coziest dessert you will ever eat. I savor it. I relish it. I dream about... and I'm a sleep talker...

The day Thing 1 left on a plane for a 2 year LDS Church mission my dear friend Rhonda surprised me by bringing this cake and the accompanying caramel sauce over hot out of the oven. I have never felt so loved. The sweetest part is that she chose this recipe because she knew I love it. I want to be a friend like that!

I'm linking this back over to Amber, even though it's two days late. It's that good.

Do you have some favorite fall recipes? I want them! I will definitely try them!!! Just ask Emily, her pulled pork has become a favorite, I want to make it every other day. Or check out this Sweet Potato Casserole from Joy for your Journey, I'm excited to try that one on my parents for Thanksgiving.

Come on... blog about them and link me up, I can't wait to make some yummy new recipes.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Me and Albert

Do you ever wonder about your parenting techniques? I think every now and then I do okay. But far too often I am unsure and second guessing what is best. I guess I'm in good company... today while helping in Fashionista's 5th grade class I learned that Albert Einstein was rarely confident in his decisions, constantly questioning his discoveries and wondering about what he was doing. Me and Albert. We're a team.

Today I am wondering about honesty.

Bondifaj is probably a name you have never heard before, unless you know my second son. I believe the story goes something like this, "We have a great uncle living in the middle east ... his name is Bondifaj and we love him so much that we named our second son after him."

My teenagers love to tell these stories. The Beans story is that her full name is six names long. In reality she is named after my Mom and my Dad's Grandmother. Ever since she was tiny Mike liked to call her by a very long nick name. He took Beaners first name and my mom's full name which is 4 names long [first, middle, maiden, last] added our last name and Jr. the Third. Of course she dropped the 'Jr. the Third' because you can tell that's not real. I think she has convinced most of her friends that this is truly her name. Now, don't get me wrong, it's a beautiful name after some very amazing women, it's just not 'the truth'.

Bondifaj is the name Coolio created for a middle eastern looking character on our Wii. He created this character one day and wanted to give him a name that fit. So, 'randomly' typing in different letter combinations he came up with Bondifaj and it stuck. And now he too has convinced many that he has two middle names, the second of which is, of course, Bondifaj. Pronounced (bon dee fajzh).

Another story... As I was helping Fashionista with her hair one morning she said, "Hey Mom, did you know we have cousins in Stanwood?" I almost said, "No way, really?" when I remembered who her sister is. So instead I said, "Did The Bean tell you that?" "Yes." "She's pulling your leg." Beaner also has a sister from whom she was separated at birth living nearby who in actuality looks a lot like her, and she and Coolio don't have the same birth mother.

Sometimes I laugh. Sometimes I roll my eyes. Sometimes I tell her noone will ever believe her once they realize how often she is 'teasing' (I might say lying) and sometimes I get angry. I think it might depend on what day of the month it is.

Do you have story tellers in your family? Do you ever question your parenting? Do you ever get impatient over things that might not really matter in the long run (or wonder if they really will matter in the long run?)

Maybe I should write a letter to Ask Laskas.

Whatever it is, the world may never know... but from now on the name of my second son on this blog is no longer Coolio. By request from the man himself, my second son will forever more be known as Bondifaj.

Monday, November 16, 2009


Remember when the Berenstain Bears brother and sister were having a hard time getting along and Mama Bear gave them some requirements of things they had to do to be kind to each other that they thought was completely stupid? (although I'm sure they didn't use the word stupid...)

But they wanted Mama Bear off their backs so instead of just trying to follow her plan they
excessively followed her plan. Using words like my sweet sister and dear dear brother as they opened doors for each other and helped the other with their dinner job. They were going as overboard as they could in hopes of annoying Mama Bear to the point of getting back to their 'normal' world.

Of course the joke was on them. Pretty soon it became natural for them to serve one another and be kind.

Last week in Family Night Beaner taught a lesson about Charity. It was an amazing lesson in which she quoted Paul from the New Testament saying "Charity never faileth". I don't think sister and brother bear realized they were treating each other with Charity. Maybe they didn't even know that the true definition of charity is "the pure love of Christ". When we treat others with respect and kindness, we are practicing and learning how to love as Christ does and be a little more like Him.

As part of her lesson she shared the story of a Pastor that we heard recently. Each night at dinner he would ask his children what they did for someone else that day. Knowing they would be asked that question, they went out of their way to serve or show charity in some way so that they could report to their dad that evening.

We were challenged to try that this past week. Just like the Berenstain's it started out a little excessive (like I care, as long as it is happening.. I felt a little like Mama Bear grinning to myself as they put on the butter =] )

I saw more hugging, more kind words, more helping than ever and ........

I loved it.

That was the best Family Night Lesson we've had in a long time with the best results I've seen in a long time and I hope it continues for a long time!

P.S. I'm pretty sure the results were much better than if the lesson had been presented by a parent.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

I'm Thankful for...

Modern Conveniences

Tylenol, hairdryers, contact lenses, hairspray, motorcars, email, antibiotics, running water, refrigerators, ovens, dishwashers, gps, cookies, and the list goes on.

But today I am especially thankful for a washer and a dryer.

Laundry is not my favorite chore. It seems to be ever present and even looming. Last week was filled with activities and busyness and when Thursday arrived laundry was piled high waiting, waiting, waiting...

I gathered it all together, separated it into whites, towels, reds, greens, blues, jeans, blacks and pastels. And, yes with 5 family members home and a week since any laundry was done, there were plenty of clothes to have each of those loads.

I started the hot water, added the Tide and the white load and left the room. When I returned a few minutes later the floor was wet. That is never a good sign. It was already late afternoon and I was planning on rotating laundry for the rest of the day and more on Friday. It would be an extended task this time followed by folding and hanging and folding some more.

Mike had just finished working and since he is Mr. Fix It I introduced him to the wet floor in the laundry room. What a man! We grabbed some towels to dry the floor. Put the washer through a spin cycle to drain the water and removed the clothes. He skillfully flipped it on its side and immediately discovered the problem.

He removed the culprit, took it to the parts store and I was doing laundry again within the hour.

I'm thankful for my washer and dryer but even more, I'm thankful for a husband who can fix stuff.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

6WS No Doubt... I Love this Land

God Bless the U.S.A.

I love Veterans Day. It's a new love in my life. I never really had an appreciation for it until my kids started going to school at the elementary school that Fashionista still attends. I should have. My ancestors have fought for this glorious land of ours for many generations. Click here to read a tribute from my Grandmother.

A Navy Base is located near our home which means that a high percentage of the students in our district come from Navy families. Many of them have parents currently serving in places far from home. Many have lived in distant countries. The house next door is currently being rented to a young Navy family because the Navy family that owns it is on a 3 year assignment in Italy.
Down the street we have retired Navy and retired Marines. Our world is filled with Military including a nephew who served and died in Iraq.

Yesterday we attended the Veterans Day assembly at Fashionista's school. This is the most powerful event of the year. The attendance is greater at this assembly than anything else I have ever attended at an elementary school.

Fashionista is in the schools choir and they have been practicing for this since the start of school.

I wish I could portray to you the feelings that prevailed in that overcrowded gym. From the moment we stood to repeat the Pledge of Allegiance followed by a beautiful rendition of God Bless America sung by the 100+ voice 4th and 5th grade choir a spirit of support, love and gratitude filled the room.

We stood for a moment of silence. It was beautiful and touching. Here we were, surrounded by approximately 600 children from age 5 to 11 and the room was completely silent until one Xylophone began to play Taps. I thought about people in my family who have served in the armed forces in years gone by, I thought about families I know who currently have members sacrificing for the wonderful freedoms we enjoy and I thought about people I have never met who have lost loved ones to these ugly wars.

My eyes were already beginning to mist when the choir sang a medley of the theme songs for the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard. They asked that if you are serving or have served in one of these armed forces to please stand during your song. There were Moms, Dads, brothers, sisters, and grandfathers standing at times during the entire medley.

The feelings of gratitude and love that filled my heart were overpowering and my eyes spilled over.

I live in a nation where my freedoms are so great that I can worship however I choose, I can talk about whatever I want in my blog with no fear of being censored or put in jail, I can live in whatever way I like because of the sacrifices others have made in the past 300 years.

God Bless America, MY home sweet home.

For more Six Word Saturday visit Cate at Show my Face.

Friday, November 13, 2009

This post is brought to you by the letter S and by the number 40

Sunny Day sweeping the clouds away, on my way to where the air is sweet... Can you tell me how to get, how to get to Sesame Street.

I love Sesame Street. I loved Sesame Street as a kid and I love it as a Mom. When we learned that I was expecting our first child the part that made my husband the most excited about being a Dad was that he could watch Sesame Street!

This week Sesame Street celebrated it's 40th birthday. I've been thinking about it all week and today Emily took me to a place where you can take a test to see which muppet you are most like. I am like Big Bird. Hmmmm.

I want to share some of my favorites with you. Hopefully they will bring you some fond memories as they did me!

The original opening song. The picture isn't very good, but it sure brought back memories.

Who could ever forget Grover being unable to comprehend the word in when being a waiter and the man who kept returning to this restaurant. Would he ever learn to stop patronizing that place?

We still call for things this way at our house. Would you believe it really works? That Ernie, he knows what he's talking about! (okay maybe not.)

I love Bert and his oatmeal and pigeons, Grover and his sweet self (and super Grover), Maria, and Mr. Hooper ~I heard when he died they were honest about it and it was difficult for Big Bird, what a wonderful way to teach children about death. I would love to see that episode. Telly monster cracks me up and our kids can hardly believe that at one time Big Bird was the only one who could see Snufalupagus. Remember when everybody thought he was Big Birds imaginary friend?

It's been a great 40 years! Here's to 40 more!!!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Thursday Photo Phun

I love this picture
I found this picture of my daughter on facebook! I guess a friend paid her a dollar to put mascara on and then was so amazed at the length of her lashes she took a picture so
The Bean could see them.
Yes, this was taken on a cell phone camera!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Red Velvet Cake

I found this recipe on a blog called Apple a Day last spring, she adapted it from

It will make one 8 inch 3 layer cake. Or three 8 inch 1 layer cakes. You do what you think is best... ooohhhhh my kids hate it when I say that. What is it about the responsibility of having to make a decision for yourself???

Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

For the cake:
2½ cups cake flour 1½ cups sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
1 teaspoon salt 2 eggs
1½ cups vegetable oil 1 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons (1 oz.) red food coloring 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon white distilled vinegar

For the frosting:
12 ounces cream cheese, softened
12 ounces butter, softened
1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
3 cups confectioners’ sugar
1½ cups chopped pecans (optional)

1. For the cake: Preheat oven to 350°.

2. Sift together flour, sugar, baking soda, cocoa, and salt into a medium bowl.

3. Beat eggs, oil, buttermilk, food coloring, vanilla, and vinegar in a large bowl with an electric mixer until well combined. Add dry ingredients and beat until smooth, about 2 minutes.

4. Divide batter evenly between 3 greased and floured 8″ round cake pans.

5. Bake cakes, rotating halfway through, until a toothpick inserted in the center of each cake comes out clean, 25-30 minutes. Let cakes cool 5 minutes, then invert each onto a plate, then invert again onto a cooling rack. Let cakes cool completely.

6. For the frosting: Beat cream cheese, butter, and vanilla together in a large bowl with an electric mixer until combined. Add sugar and beat until frosting is light and fluffy, 5-7 minutes.

4. Put 1 cake layer on a cake plate, level off with a serrated knife, and spread one-quarter of the frosting on top. Set another layer on top, level, and repeat frosting. Set remaining layer on top, level, and frost top and sides with the remaining frosting. Press pecans into the sides of the cake, if desired. **Tip: after leveling cake, turn it upside down to reduce numbers of crumbs. I also did a crumb coat on the outside, let it set for ten minutes, then finished with remaining frosting. (from Jenny: I don't use the pecans or level off with a knife or bother with a crumb coat.)

5. Chill for 2 hours to set frosting. ~if you can wait that long to dig in.

Mike made this taste temptation for my birthday last spring. It was magical. Smooth. Rich. Delightful.

His friends at work remember things like that so when they decided to have a potluck for Veterans Day they requested he make Red Velvet Cake. So today I made it for him to take. What's the good of being a full time homemaker if you can't make yummy treats for your man to take to work?

What surprised me the most is that he asked me to put it on the glass cake pedestal! Fancy man that Mike.


I heard a story recently about a man who was in the hospital near death when he was a child. His Italian grandmother came to the hospital and asked a family member to go buy her a large onion and a new pair of white cotton socks. She sliced the onion open then put a slice on the bottom of each of his feet and put the white cotton socks on him. In the morning when he awoke they removed the socks. The slices of onion were black and his fever was gone.

In 1919 when the flu killed 40 million people there was a Doctor that visited many of the farmers in his area to see if he could help them combat the flu. Many of the farmers and their families had contracted it and many died.

The doctor came upon one farmer and to his surprise, everyone in the family was very healthy. When the doctor asked what the farmer was doing that was different his wife replied that she had placed an unpeeled onion in a dish in the rooms of the home. The doctor couldn't believe it and asked if he could have one of the onions to look at under the microscope. She gave him one and when he did this, he found the flu virus in the onion. It had absorbed the bacteria, therefore, keeping the family healthy.

This story comes from a hairdresser in Arizona. She said that several years ago many of her employees were coming down with the flu and so were many of her customers. The next year she placed several bowls with onions around her shop. To her surprise, none of her staff got sick.

Here's another one: This person had contracted pneumonia and was very ill. She came across an article that said to cut both ends off an onion, put one end on a fork and then place the forked end into an empty jar, placing the jar next to the sick patient at night. It said the onion would be black in the morning from the germs. Sure enough it happened, just like that....the onion was a mess and she began to feel better.

It has also been said that onions and garlic placed around the room saved many from the black plague years ago.

They have powerful antibacterial, antiseptic properties.

I wish these stories had been brought to my attention 3 weeks ago. But nevertheless, I will definitely be trying it for the rest of the winter and next year as well.

Go Onions!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Mean Joe Green is 63

Mean Joe Green turned 63 on September 24th. I was listening to the radio that morning when they announced it and all sorts or childhood memories came flooding into my mind. Memories of three brothers. I was surrounded by boys. I have two sisters too, thank goodness! But they are 5 years older and 5 years younger. The boys and I were all born within 5 years of each other... I am right in the middle.
Best Coke commercial EVER!

Hearing Mean Joe's name took me back to the 70's so fast my head was spinning. Being that close to boys filled my life with... all kinds of fun. I could have been a complete tom boy playing sports and shooting BB guns. Or I could have been a girly pink ruffle girl, playing with Baby Tender Love and Barbie.

I chose the feminine route. I must have owned every Baby Tender Love ever made. And I loved every one. Neither of my daughters were baby doll girls but Barbies are still a fixture here in Whoville.I loved wearing dresses to school and there was at least a little pink every day. Or yellow. Mrs. Hansen called me Jenny Poo and she said I looked good in yellow. I was always embarrassed by that nickname because that's a naughty word but I liked her and I believed her.

Now, the boy stuff didn't scare me. I have had frogs on my head and snakes underfoot, I was even willing to hunt for nightcrawlers. I just really liked being a girl and I still do.

My brothers liked football; R. was always a fan of the L.A. Rams. They were the best and you better not even consider arguing that fact. Of course G. and D. did argue that fact... a lot. But R. was never moved. I don't remember either of G or D's teams... maybe the Cowboys, maybe the Steelers but never The Rams.

Mean Joe played for the Steelers and he was a force of 1970's football.

So, Mr. Green, thanks for the memories and especially the great Coke commercial.

Happy Late Birthday.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

A Squirrel and his Booty

I follow a great blog called Twisted Fencepost. Becky lives on a farm way south of here and has a wonderful way with words. She lives with squirrels, spiders, horses and cows. The other day she shared an adventure in nut gathering and her race with the squirrels to gather them. It reminded me of a little adventure we had several years ago.

We lived in a great little rambler on the other side of town with a cedar shake roof that originally looked something like this: but was beginning to look a little like this: The time had come for a new roof. After researching every person and everyplace he could think of Mike was ready to "Do it Yourself"!

We purchased supplies, prayed for sun and borrowed tools. We were ready to replace the old wooden shingles with a beautiful new composition roof.

Next to our house was something I really miss. A huge beautiful 100 foot pine tree. Granted, when the high winds of autumn came I always prayed for a deep root system which is a little uncommon around here, but I still miss it. Because of this tree and the nature of where we live, we discovered that our roof was the backyard and playground for life we were then unaware of. I hope you can sense the anger. This guy did not want us on his roof! Well, this isn't the original, I found him on the web, but very similar and not happy with us!

Then we discovered the booty. Nuts. Everywhere.

Squirrels used our roof to hide their nut booty.

Peanuts. Under roof tiles. All over the roof.

I wonder where else we might find their booty?!?

By replacing that roof we were robbing unsuspecting squirrels of forgotten nuts from years gone by.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

6WS To Swine or not to Swine

The Flu has left the building! (finally!)

We never went in for confirmation if it was or wasn't H1N1... but we definitely had The Flu.

Two weeks, four victims.

I don't like the flu.

Our symptoms have run the gamut. The first culprit had a full range of body aches, severe head, back, and leg pain. But no cold symptoms. The doc thinks the rest might still come... I hope not.

The second was worse. Fever, body aches, sore throat, coughing, more fever... but no nausea. What a relief! That one got better for a few days and then worse again. The doc thinks we might be working toward pneumonia. Yikes.

Kid #3 was pretty happy the first week that they were such a good hand washer! But then Halloween arrived with a fever, body aches and... you guessed it throwing up. Ugh! It sure is nice others were willing to share trick or treating booty!

Since I can't stand to be left out of things the family is doing I just had to join in. Mine wasn't too bad. At least I was only down for a day and a half.

Hope you're having better health at your house!

Please stay away from the pigs! (six)

~just kidding, I know it's not caused by pigs! Where did they come up with the name Swine Flu anyway?

Visit Show My Face for more Six Word Saturday Fun!

Friday, November 6, 2009

Dinner Rolls

These are the easiest quickest homemade rolls you will ever meet. They are best if given the double rising 'required' for dinner rolls (and most bread) but... they don't need it to be delicious. Check out this recipe... So easy, I can almost make them in my sleep.Quick Dinner Rolls from my friend Verlene:

4-5 cups flour (I always use unbleached white flour, it just seems healthier)
3 Tbsp Sugar
1 tsp. Salt
1/2 cup warm water (to dissolve yeast)
2 Tbsp Active Dry Yeast
1 cup Scalded Milk
1/4 cup margarine

Dissolve yeast in lukewarm water. Heat milk and margarine together in microwave for about a minute and a half. Mix dry ingredients. Combine all together and knead. (I just let my Kitchen Aid do the kneading.) Let rise double. Form into rolls. Let rise. Bake at 350 for about 15 minutes.Sometimes I don't let them rise at all, I just form into rolls and pop them in the oven. They are more dense that way but still mouthwatering and irresistibly tasty.

Thursday, November 5, 2009


The Homecoming Dance at our High School was on Halloween this year, and...
the students were NOT allowed to come in costume.

Beaner and I went shopping a few weeks before the dance. Fully expecting to find a dress that would require adjusting for modesty. We found a cute one in the second store we tried. It would require some adjusting but nothing a cute little black Tee and a yard of black fabric couldn't fix!

By letting out the hem which thankfully was four inches deep and adding another four inches of black fabric the dress made it to her knees. Here's a secret about The Beaner, she is always wearing a pair of basketball shorts! If a dress is too short to cover them... it's too short!We spent about an hour curling her three heads worth of hair and she looked beautiful!
Do you recognize her date? New Kid! They went trick or treating in our old neighborhood, ate at Red Robin, went to the dance and had a great night with good friends.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Cleaning Cast Iron Frying Pans

Once upon a time there was a cast iron pan with caked on food.It had lovingly helped in creating a beautiful meal to feed the masses.
The chef walked away, forgetting her cast iron pan.
When she returned the pan was cold and to her dismay
the food had become a hard crust- impossible to remove.
The chef scrubbed and she scrubbed and after much soaking and toil
the food came out and the pan became...

Oh whoa was the chef and she cried bitter tears.
What would she do without the pan that she loved.
And then one day her dear brother said,
"Don't worry yourself. That pan's life isn't o'er.
You can season the pan like you once did before.
Starting over again with the pan you adore."

But what will I do when it happens again.
Must I rust and reseason each time that I use it?

"No, No," cried her brother as he chuckled and sighed,
"Follow these simple directions and you will always have a
perfectly seasoned pan with a complete lack of crust."

1. After food has been removed from pan, replace pan on heat.2. Pour in hot water, just enough to cover the bottom of the pan. (never cold, this could crack your cast iron)3. Use your spatula to 'scrape' off excess crust from bottom and sides of pan.4. NEVER use soap or detergent on cast iron. Future food will have the residual flavor of Dawn.
5. Using a hot pad, remove pan to the sink and pour out water and food remains.
6. Finish wiping out pan with dishcloth.
7. Dry completely.8. Spray with oil.9. Spread oil evenly with paper towel.10. 'Dry' with a new paper towel. Your pan will shine with joy.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Navajo Taco's

It's what's for dinner.

First you take the bread dough.

Yesterday I made dinner rolls with meatloaf!

But I was kind of in a hurry, so I only made up enough rolls for our family. No leftovers. Then I tossed the rest of the dough in the freezer.

Today, Beaner (the major taco lover of the family) requested Navajo Tacos. Being the "pleaser" mom that I am, I said, "Sure!" (Of course knowing there was premade dough in the freezer helped.)And now I will take you on a journey to the land of the Navajo. A land of prairie grass, tumble weeds and open camp fires. A land where Buffalo roam free and men hunt on horse back. Wait. Wrong channel.

Let's go instead to the kitchen of Whoville. Where white dishes seem to multiply and glass glasses are becoming extinct. A land of smoothies and grilled pb&j where children roam free and men are found on the seat of a bike.

Roll out the dough to about about 1/2" thick. Cut into squarish type shapes and place gently in preheated 350 degree oil. Watch closely and please wear an apron, I would really hate it if you ruined you favorite Rush Concert Tee with grease spots. Turn when golden brown and remove onto paper towel which has been lovingly placed in a white serving dish.Have your favorite kitchen help (child) brown hamburger while you fry the bread. Beaner likes to season taco meat with Taco Seasoning and chili sauce. Oh baby!Shred Cheddar and Jack cheese. Or just one. Tonight we used White Cheddar. That hasn't gone over very well here at Whoville. People are confused by the lack of color.

Cut up some crisp lettuce.

Make sure the sour cream isn't growing any green fuzzy stuff.

Heat up a can of refried beans and open a fresh jar of homemade salsa.

Place everything on the table in its own special serving dish (because you love to do dishes of course!)

I like to top my scone (frybread) with the fixin's and eat with a fork. The rest of my family like to open them and fill them up with the goods. It's a little easier to eat that way.Fashionista on the other hand is a 'scone' purist. Just a little honey and butter please.

Fry Bread vs. Scone? Living in the classy (I use that term loosely) Northwest I have found that when you say scone people think you are talking about the crumbly English cake muffin thing. I grew up calling fry bread scones. How about you? When you eat what we ate for dinner tonight what do you call it?