Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Idle Wednesday

I know, it's a little late, but I just got Sara's beads in the mail and wanted to use them...not that it seems anyone is paying any attention anyway! Assuming you are, here is the latest.

I used every single bead, cord, chain and rubber tubing she sent...

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Idle Wednesday

Simplicity in Nature.

This week I will leave you with nature's craftsmanship. Can you tell what it is?

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Thursday's Thoughts

Today's Thought:

Moral superiority is rarely proven with words

There has been a lot of discussion lately about who is right, about who is better than whom. This quote is directed at people I work with, people that run certain charities, and people that run the country. It's time for the talk to stop. If you people are better, than prove it. Fix something, actually help someone, or just do your damn job. But while I'm holding my breath, let's not try to tell me that your way is right based solely on your personal belief system. Thanks.

The principle of freedom of religion only goes so far | End Hereditary Religion

The principle of freedom of religion only goes so far | End Hereditary Religion

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Idle Wenesday

Something quick and useful!

I saw some homemade washcloths on that were a lot more expensive than they needed to be, and I thought "I can do that!"
I used organic cotton yarn for the washcloths, and hemp for the body scrubber. I saved myself $20 having used yarn and hemp that I had in my art room, rather than buying the things on Etsy. I think that at Micheal's I paid maybe $5 for the red, and about $3 for the hemp. It took a couple of Sunday night tv shows to complete the stack, so this is definitely something you can do mindlessly. I just used a basic double stitch. Oh, and I also discovered that the cotton squares make decent hot pads if you happen to be sick and eating soup out of a bowl resting on your chest. I just placed one under the bowl to keep from scalding my skin, I wouldn't pull a casserole out of the oven with it!!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Thursday's Thoughts

Today's thought:

The grass may be greener on the other side of the fence, but it still
tastes like the manure they used as fertilizer.

This is my first posting in quite some time. I have been on a tasking. My battalion decided that in order to facilitate training, some instructors would do short tours with the AIT Platoon Sergeants. This did not leave me a lot of time, but it did open my eyes a little bit. I had previously wondered what took up so much of their time. I now know that it is a lot of minutia and mismanagement of time and resources. I could spend hours bemoaning the last three months, but I will just say that I am happier now, and will have a little more free time to join you once a week again.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Idle Wednesday

A New Shoe Clutter Solution!
(Don't mind the scratched up wall, that's what you get when you have a Weimaraner who loves the backyard!)

For more than a year now we've been taking our shoes off at the door just as we get home, and tossing them into a corner of the kitchen. Mind you, there is an antique chair/step stool we are supposed to line our shoes up on, but no one ever does. The shoes end up in a pile, only organized every once in a while, or hauled upstairs when I can't stand to look at them anymore. Not only that, but my Hoosier cabinet gets loaded up with purses, backpacks, mail, keys, sweaters and so on...when it's supposed to only hold the coffee maker, the crock pot and the toaster. Drives this slightly OCD Mama nuts. So, I went in search of a solution today. I've tried going with Jay, but he hated everything I pointed out, so this time I went alone, and so whatever I liked I the time he gets home I've already spent the money and screwed holes in it, so what can he do? Anyway, I took the kids to my favorite store (LOWES) after school and picked out some simple hooks to add to the side of the shelf for our sweaters and bags, and there ya have it! A five minute fixer upper that will hopefully keep the mess off the floor. The best part was that my tinkerer-in-training helped me out. One day Miah will proudly be getting a tool belt and power tools for her birthday, just like her Mama.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Jim Jefferies: Don't watch if you are easily offended

Thy Gypsy Geoff Show (Fire!)

Check out the costume!

He told us to scream and make tons of noise every time he drank for the cup. At one point he accidentally stepped in the cup and fell over.

The audience members really participate in his show. The kids passed the plates back and forth while they are spinning. The kid in the white shirt is a real character!

This guy is incredibly clumsy for a dude that plays with fire! He kept falling all over himself!

How cool is that? What you can't tell is that the tub at the top is spinning!

This is a kid from the audience. He was given the black hat (to hold the money) and told to look cute and beg for money. He donned the hat and stuck his lower lip out, and was so cute the guy gave him this tub to collect the money in. He was so adorable!

Carolina Renaissance Fair

The Costumes

We FINALLY got a weekend off! Jay has never been to a fair, so we'd plan to go for some time, but we ended up going on the last weekend of the year. We saw a lot of shows, silly costumes, ate very bad for us food, and Jay and Miah got to ride an elephant (more pictures coming).
I wanted to post a lot of pictures, so I'm going to do several posts, and explain some of the pictures along the way. Enjoy! We certainly did!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Chuck E.(vil) Cheese

Sheila, Scotty and the kids were visiting for a few days, so we had to entertain ourselves somehow. We tend to be pretty boring, we don't drink, or go to bars, and the only hobbies we have are thing you do alone, so Sheila's brilliant idea was to go play games at Chuck E Cheese. Uggg. They all had fun though. I walked around watching my kids like a hawk, and making sure that the scary man that was there alone was staying away from my girls. I even took a couple of pictures of him after he tried to talk to Miah. I hate those people. The ones who don't' realize that to any sane mom they look like a threat, no matter how nice they seem! Sheila and Jay rolled their eyes at me, but I say it pays to be paranoid! He seemed to be right next to us the whole time. Ekk.

Just getting started. (There is the creepy dude)

Miah's pretty excited about all the tickets

Scotty racing with Keason

Jay playing Deal or No Deal

Sheila, and the guy in the background...

Gathering up her tickets

Laurel in her new sweatshirt from Manny, and that dang guy again!

They were really getting into this one, Miah kept jumping around

Sheila lost Deal or No Deal. She's so much fun to watch!

Scotty smiling for Sheila

They just realized all those tickets, and 25$ only net them some pop rocks and an alien on a parachute. lol!!
Look at Laurel's feet. She did get something from me!

Keason, Scotty and Becky (note the kid n play hair do in the background, so funny!)


The dinner table.

My special recipes:

Cranberry Sauce:


2 cups white sugar (plus more to taste)

2 cups orange juice

The zest of one orange

2 (12 ounce) packages fresh cranberries


In a saucepan over medium heat, dissolve the sugar in the orange juice. Stir in the cranberries, and cook until they start to pop. Remove from heat, and transfer to a bowl. Cool completely before covering and placing in the fridge. This can be made one to two days prior to the dinner.

Weight Watchers Pumpkin Pie with Graham Cracker Crust:

(The points value may have changed due to the new system!) Also, Everyone loved this pie, and no one knew it was weight watchers!)

POINTS® Value: 3
Servings: 8
Preparation Time: 10 min
Cooking Time: 65 min

Our take on this Thanksgiving classic features a light graham cracker crust. The filling's custardy and rich, with just a hint of spice.


3 oz reduced-fat cinnamon graham crackers, about 5 1/2 sheets (We used honey graham crackers due to the girls allergy to cinnamon, and it was just as good)

1 Tbsp packed light brown sugar

2 Tbsp butter, melted

2 large egg white(s)

1 large egg(s)

1/2 cup(s) dark brown sugar

1/4 tsp table salt

2 tsp pumpkin pie spice, or less to taste

1 cup(s) canned pumpkin

1/2 cup(s) fat-free evaporated milk

1/4 cup(s) lite whipped topping


  • Position rack in middle of oven. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  • Place graham crackers and light brown sugar in a food processor; process into crumbs (or smash into crumbs in a sealed plastic food bag with a rolling pin). Spoon crumbs into a small bowl; add melted butter and combine with fingers into a coarse meal. Distribute crumbs evenly on bottom and up sides of an ungreased 9-inch pie plate. Chill for 30 minutes before baking. Bake until crust starts to turn golden, about 8 to 10 minutes; remove from oven and let cool.
  • Meanwhile, in a large bowl, using an electric mixer, whip egg whites until frothy; fold in egg, dark brown sugar, salt, pumpkin pie spice, canned pumpkin and evaporated milk. Beat pumpkin custard until smooth and pour into pie shell. Bake until a knife inserted in center comes out clean, about 45 to 55 minutes. Slice into 8 pieces, top each piece with 1/2 tablespoon of whipped topping and serve warm or at room temperature. Yields 1 slice per serving.

Collard Greens:

Jay looked up the "how to" on making collard greens from fresh, and I decided that they were too much of a pain in the butt, and took way too long, so what I did was I took the neck and excess fat from the turkey and boiled it in two quarts of fat free reduced sodium chicken broth plus enough water to fill my pot until the neck looked cooked through. Then I cut two bunches of collard greens into thick strips, and placed them into the pot. I boiled them on high for about 30 minutes, adding more water as needed. Everybody that likes greens had seconds and thirds, so I must have done something right!

Idle Wednesday

Once a Wine Rack, Now a Bookshelf!

I have this new wine rack that I bought at goodwill for $10 which will be featured in next week's Idle Wednesday, so I'd been debating what to do with my old one. I've had it for more than thirteen years, so I didn't want to just throw it away. I contemplated giving it to goodwill, but as I sat at the computer one day and idea just popped into my head. I'd like to free up the shelf in the art room for bead magazines, since cookbooks don't really go in an art room. I decided to get rid of all of the cooking magazines because I really don't' go through them, and I'm not ever going to get around to pulling the recipes I want out of them (So if you want them, let me know quickly, and you can have them for free. After those are gone, I really only have a couple of books I use. Remarkably, when the project was done, there was exactly enough room for all of them. Now that's serendipity!)
There is only one counter that has free space to put cookbooks on, but it's the counter that I dry the dishes on. It sometimes gets quite wet, so I need to put the books on something to keep them dry. This is when my eyes land on the wine rack. Ah ha! So, I took it down, cut the middle out, and started brainstorming. I painted it the same yellow as the table, but the light in the kitchen this morning was really bad.