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Wednesday, December 31, 2008

My weirdness

Alright, fine I'll tell you one of my idiosyncrasies.

The people in pictures can see me. There, I said it. What? You don't understand? Here I'll show you.

See E.T.? He can see you too.


See the sprout? She can see you too, or she could if she had her eyes open.


I don't know where this weirdness came from, but it' defiantly there. We have a shelf in our bathroom, it's directly across from the toilet and it's function is to hold bath towels, washcloths, things like that. We keep a few magazines on it too for, well you know what they're for.

I had been turning the magazines with pictures of people on the front over so they couldn't see me, but anytime anyone else used the magazines, they'd crazily put them back face up. Don't they know that those people can see them?? I finally had to break down and explain to Boo why the magazines, had to be face down. Or covered completely if there is a face on the back too!

Now you know too and you can feel like your being watched all around your house.

You're welcome.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The Sprout's Christmas Choir Performance

I don't have a digital video camera. I would love to have one however. (Boo, did you hear that?)My digital camera will take video, but it's memory card won't hold much. So I could only capture the first song of the Spout's concert.

Here it is for your viewing pleasure.

She's second row, third from left.

Friday, December 26, 2008

I can finally talk about it

It's after Christmas, I can bring myself to recount the horrible tale now. This is the story of our Christmas tree.

Each year for the past 4 or 5 years we've gone to a local tree farm and selected and sawed down our own tree. The farm is really nice, they have hay rides, and farm animals for the kids to visit with. They hide little ornaments in the field of baby trees that aren't ready to be cut yet and let the children go for a treasure hunt. If they return with an ornament they get to pick a little prize from a box. It's all very wonderful and good family time. (The farm is called Santa's Forest Choose and Cut Christmas Tree Farm. I looked but they don't seem to have a website)

This year, however, the Sprout was going to be with her biological father on Christmas tree getting weekend so we decided just to grab one of those trees outside the grocery store.


Boo and I had not been having the best of days, it was COLD and raining, we were both irritated. I said something along the lines of "Oh, just grab one" He grabbed the first one and we brought it home.

nekkid tree

You may not be able to tell, I tried to take as flattering a picture as possible,though blurry (again) but the tree is no where near the classic Christmas tree shape. Ordinarily this wouldn't bother me. My crunchy granola side would pipe up and say "hey, it's more natural looking, it's not a Frankentree at all" The problem with it's un-shapeliness is that the top is bigger than the bottom. I don't know if you've been to physics class lately but when something's top is bigger than it's bottom it tends not to be particularly stable.

The tree has fallen. Twice.


I'm really beginning to think the ornaments look better on the ottoman.

Another problem the tree has, which isn't helped at all by bumping into the floor is that it's sort of flat. I guess it's from being shipped, but it's sort of folded up like an umbrella.

Oh and did I mention that when I opened the box of ornaments there were no lights? Apparently I threw them out last year, (they had a short) and forgot about it.

But it's a tree. It smells nice. It looks nice when it's lights are lit and all the other lights in the house aren't.

OK, I'm going to take it to the compost heap now.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

This one time at band camp. . .

Ok, so it wasn't band camp it was gym class. My friends, I'll call them Jennifer, Tenille, and David, cause those are their names, and I didn't want to play basketball in the gym again.

Is it just me or does everyone remember high school gym class as nothing but pickup games of half court basketball?

Anyway, back to the story, we went down to the tennis courts which were behind the school and down a hill. My high school was in a very rural area so the tennis courts bordered the woods behind the school. There was a football field to the right and a cow pasture to the left if you're interested in that kinda thing.

We didn't want to play tennis either mind you, buncha slackers we were. So we were down there goofing off when we decided to go into the woods. No, there wasn't any adult supervision, why do you ask?

There was a clearing in the woods scattered with beer cans and cigarette butts. As we were walking through the clearing, I looked down and saw the sole of a shoe sticking up through the dirt. Of course, as any logical teenage girl would I screamed and pointed it out to my friends.

We poked at it and it felt solid. We were sure there was a foot inside. We made David dig it up. He slowly dug around the shoe with a large stick digging deeper and deeper until he uncovered a dead body. Not really, he just uncovered an old shoe packed full of dirt.

Good times.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Lists, lists lists

When I decided that I was going to start blogging much more regularly, the first thing I did was make a list of possible future topics. Things that have happened recently. That's when i decided I'd blog about my love of lists.

I make lists of everything. I make grocery lists, lists of errands I need to do, lists of the things I've bought for dinner for the week, lists of things I need to do around the house (vacuum, sweep, bleah), everything. Here's a list of some tradeskill information from World of Warcraft.


And that's my beloved notebook, I have to keep a notebook like this easily accessible at all times for list making purposes. I'm lost without it. Boo says I make lists of my lists, and although he's joking I actually have done that before. I've listed the contents of storage boxes, and then packed the list into the box where it's completely useless as a reference tool. I've written things on lists of things to do that have already done, just so some things can be marked off.

Other than the lists I'm really not organized, promise.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

The Sock Saga

I used the cash I received for my birthday to buy yarn to make Boo and the Sprout some socks. This is not as unselfish as it sounds. The enjoyment I get out of knitting comes from the act of knitting. I don't care what I knit or who it's for, I just want to knit. Besides, I'd already knitted myself a pair of socks.

This is my favorite part of knitting socks. It's called "turning the heel". I've heard lots of people bemoan the horror of turning the heel, but really it's my favorite part!

Forgive the blurriness, please. I had the camera set on the wrong focus and didn't realize until it was too late.


It's like magic, one minute you have a flat piece of knitting and the next, you have a little cup for the heel to eventually live in. I go around the house trying to get people to put their noses in, but they never cooperate.


So I was bopping along, perfectly happy in sock land, then i see this . . .


I know it's blurry also, but you can hopefully see that it's a ball band. An empty ball band.

It's immediately followed by this . . .


What's that you ask? That, my friends, is an unfinished Sprout sock.


Now I have to drive for half an hour to buy one skein/ball of yarn to do a small portion of the foot and the toes of the sock. What, I ask you, am I supposed to do with the leftovers from that ball? I don't think the Sprout is going to grow a third foot anytime soon.

Le sigh

Monday, December 22, 2008

2008 Christmas Tree Lighting

Just some pictures today.

Our town recently held it's 50th annual Christmas parade and tree lighting ceremony. My daughter, being a member of her school choir, sang at the ceremony.

Here the choir director tries to herd them into a line to practice.


Here she is waiting to preform, she's gonna hate that picture one day :P


Here, this ones better, no strange faces in this one. This is her and her bestest friend Macy.


Oh and the tree in case you wanted to see


Friday, December 19, 2008

Great Grandma Ledford

Today is Dec 19th, 2008. It would have been my great grandmother's 88th birthday, however she passed away on November 22nd. I'm surprised I'm posting this. I'm not one to dwell at all on death or to mark the deceased's birthday after they're gone, but I felt the need to blog it so I'm blogging it :)

Here is Fannie Elizabeth Ledford with her husband Burns Augustus Ledford (he passed away in 1987). I'm not sure when this picture was taken. My mom scanned and emailed it when I was doing my family tree thing.

Let's see, what to tell you about Grandma? I remember when I got my first pair of Converse hi tops in the 80s she told me she wore a pair just like them when she played basketball in school. She was very very afraid of thunderstorms. She'd actually sometimes lay on the floor during a storm. She was married when she was 14 and had 6 children. She had 11 grandchildren(my mom); 18 great-grandchildren(me) and four great-great grandchildren(my daughter).

Here's a Picture from 2007.

2007 grandma ledford

Happy Birthday Grandma!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

I love that kid

I hate housework. Kinda odd to hear that from a housewife huh? I love taking care of my family and making sure they have what they need but i hate the drudgery of doing the same things over and over. Laundry is like that. Wash the same clothes over and over, fold the clothes . . . . boring!
To make matters worse my laundry room is a tiny little thing with no windows and nothing much to look at. Yet when i walked in a few days ago I had this view.

luvnote washer

My daughter had left this note for me, written in dry erase marker, on top of the washing machine.

A similar note, this time including her father appeared on the kitchen message board.

luv note fridge

I love that kid!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

I love that man

Boo has been to almost every school event and function the sprout has had. The amount her biological father has attended? Zero.

This time I didn't think he was going to make it. She has a Christmas program on the 18th. She's in the school choir and she'll be singing. She needs to be there at 5:30 and the performance begins at 6. Boo doesn't get home from his one hour commute until after 6. I thought he would be able to attend. He's just started this job and there is no way he could ask for a day off or to leave early.

He came home with news a few days ago though, he's switched shifts with a coworker. My beloved is going in early so that he can leave early. The man who hates to get up 'at the crack ass of dawn', as he so affectionately refers to it, is going to get up early and drive to work before the sun is up just so he can attend his daughters performance.

There is nothing sexier than a good father. I love that man!

Blogging or lack thereof

I know I've been really bad about blogging regularly. But lately I've been reading the Pioneer Woman's Blog (she actually has several rolled into one)and hey, if she can do it with her crazy life then I certainly can!

I love her blog, she posts everything from descriptions of what working cattle means to sound files of her burping. It's just the eclectic kinda craziness I love. I'm taking time to go back and read her past posts now and I think Boo may be tired of hearing Pioneer Woman anecdotes by now. Too bad for him :P

I'll see you tomorrow :)

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Goodnight Garden

Well it's getting cold so it's time for the garden to go to bed. I brought the green onions, basil, oregano, sage and lemon balm in to winter on the kitchen windowsill, or more accurately the table in front of the kitchen window. The remnants of everything else went into the compost bin and the dirt from the pots back into the dirt container. I'll be so glad when we have our own planting place and don't have to use pots and containers anymore.
I left two window boxes out and planted garlic in those. Garlic loves the cold, so they should be ready in spring. I did this last year too and we had a lot of little heads of garlic, maybe by using two pots and spacing them out a bit this year we'll get bigger heads.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Smucker's Uncrustables

I know I just blogged about a free sample of food and how much I liked it, but I have to tell you about another one :P

I just got a sample of Smucker's Uncrustables, from Bzzz. I wanted to try the peanut butter only variety but my local grocery store doesn't have that flavor :( I tried Peanut butter and grape jelly. They were great, they tasted just like I remember PB&J sandwiches from when I was little. You store them in the freezer, but the bread tastes pretty fresh, it doesn't get hard or soggy. Delicious!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Chex Mix Bars

I just got a box of Chex Mix Bars yesterday afternoon and they're already gone! LOL

They were delicious. Everyone liked them, they've got the crunchiness of chex mix with some caramely chocolatey goodness thrown in.

Highly recommended. *nods*

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

The garden

I haven't blogged about the garden in awhile. Things are still growing out there.

I let the lettuce go to seed and harvested some for next year. I'm probably gonna have lettuce coming up in the grass too :P Lettuce seeds are teensy tiny, btw.


Here is the everlasting oregano. I've kept it alive longer than any plant I've ever had inside or out :P I pick from it constantly and it just keeps going and going.


This is the leggy basil, tasty though.


Here's our watermelon that still isn't ready to be picked, sheesh melons take patience.


The baby Jalepenos. This is the 3rd or 4th crop we've gotten from these this year. The bell peppers are planted beside them but we only got one bell pepper. You can also see the sage in this shot, it's leggy but tasty as well.


This is a cantaloupe vine that volunteered from the compost pile. I love surprize cantaloupes :P


I think the banana peppers are done for the year, we got around 10 peppers though.And finally, these are the green onions. I bought them from the grocery store, clipped almost all the green tops for dinner and then planted the white roots bulbs. They've grown from there. Replenishing food, what could be better? These got yet another haircut for dinner last night :)


Oh and the prickly pear cactus.


Apple Bread Part Two

Here's the final product of this post.


It was delicious! I think I'm going to make it this way from now on.


I guess it's time to make a pie now . . . .

Friday, September 26, 2008

Apple Bread

Each fall I make apple bread. I also make it for the winter holidays, since each batch makes two loaves it's easy to make enough to give to friends. Last weekend my mom showed up at the door with a large bag of apples from her trees. Seems she had a bumper crop this year :) What to do with all the apples? Well apple bread of course! I made two loaves Saturday that disappeared before Monday. Today I decided to vary it a bit and try it in a bundt pan. Here's the process and the recipe.

Apple Bread

2 cups sugar
1 cup oil
3 eggs
3 cups flour
1 teaspoon each of baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and vanilla
3 cups chopped apples
1 cup chopped nuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

Peel and core the apples, chop them into small pieces. They don't have to be uniform or a certain size. You can have a bit more than or a bit less than 3 cups, it's flexible. Combine all the ingredients, except the apples and nuts, in a large bowl.

Then add the apples, and nuts if you're using them, and stir to combine.

Pres into to two loaf pans or as I'm experimenting with here one bundt pan.


And bake for 1 and 1/2 hours.

Mine is in the oven now. I'll try to remember to take a pic of it before it gets devoured and post it here. Happy baking!

** see part two here**

Thursday, September 18, 2008


I didn't used to like pizza, I still don't like the take out pizzas but ones we can make at home are great! I like being able to choose exactly what I want the toppings to be and know exactly what's in the ingredient list.

Pillsbury Pizza Dough is already ready to go, you just roll it out and fill it up! They've just come out with a thin crust version too. There are coupons for it in the latest Sunday paper and online ones at They also have recipes and run ideas there. Check it out.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Free Stuff

Wow I haven't blogged in almost two months! Bad me! I'll try to blog more often.

I've been doing some serious money saving research lately, I've started using coupons and I've found it's really an art. Yesterday I used $39.00 worth of coupons! I love being able to get some name brand things instead of my old method of just getting whatever was cheapest.

Plus since I'm making connections I'm getting free stuff. Who doesn't like free stuff?! Here's what came in the mail this past week.

Yes those are all full sized products that were absolutely free. Not buy one get one free, not 'just pay shipping and handling', absolutely free.

General Mills sent the Froot Loops and the Trix via UPS. They wanted my family to try both kinds of cereal and tell them which one we liked better, color, flavor, that sort of thing.

General Mills also sent a coupon for a free box of Cheerios because I signed up for the 6 week challenge.

Chef Boyardee sent two coupons for a free product of my choice, I also received a coupon for one free Ensure (and $ off a six pack). Stride sent the free pack of gum. What one? Go here. Wal-Mart sent the full sized roll of Scott.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Me A to Z

That sneaky JulieB booby trapped one of her blog posts so now I have to post this too :P

ACCENT: Southern ya'll
BREAKFAST OR NO BREAKFAST: I usually just eat lunch at 10:30. I really should start eating breakfast though.
CHORE I DON'T CARE FOR: washing dishes
DOG OR CAT: neither, but I'd love to have either
ESSENTIAL ELECTRONICS: the puter and printer
FAVORITE COLOGNE: Don't really use smellies
GOLD OR SILVER: white gold :P
INSOMNIA: Not usually
KIDS: 1, Samantha
LIVING ARRANGEMENTS: noisy neighborhood with annoying neighbors that I can't wait to get out of!
MOST ADMIRABLE TRAIT: I'm extremely easygoing
NAUGHTIEST CHILDHOOD BEHAVIOR: decided to walk to grandma's without telling anyone, my mother's still talking about that.
OVERNIGHT HOSPITAL STAY: the last one was when i had my daughter, before that I had an appendectomy and broken legs
PHOBIAS: spiders
QUOTE: I would feel more optimistic about a bright future for man if he spent less time proving that he can outwit Nature and more time tasting her sweetness and respecting her seniority. -- EB White
REASON TO SMILE: I can always find some reason to smile. It's that, or go crazy.
SIBLINGS: none, I'm all alone
TIME I WAKE UP: I'm been sleeping in lately, 8 am ish
UNUSUAL SKILL OR TALENT: I have an amazing capacity to store random bits of completely useless knowledge.
WORST HABIT: I sometimes pick my nose :P
YUMMY STUFF: cheeeeescake

Now, I've booby trapped my post too so if you've read this far, consider yourself tagged :)

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

My goals, expanded

Recently Homegrownrose over at Ravelry (her blog is here if you're not on Ravelry) posted a list of her goals in 'reclaiming the home'. In reading her list I see that mine is very similar. Basically she said a lot of what I was too lazy to sit and write down on my own. So I'm inspired to post my list.

Making things simpler. This is at the head of my list, slowing down, appreciating time spent with family, not feeling rushed with 15 things I have to do right-this-minute, taking time to bake bread from scratch, making meals for my family that aren't full of chemicals, growing our own food so we know exactly where it came from. Learning to knit, to sew, eventually to spin, weave, make cheese, butter, keep bees, etc.

Living green. Also very important to me. We compost kitchen scraps, recycle everything possible, don't buy products that are over packaged, don't buy disposable plates, cups and paper towels, turn off lights when we leave the room, etc. Little things make a huge difference.

Getting things we don't need out of the way. I'm not very attached to stuff. I have very few things that I'd cry over if they were gone. Old toys, clothes, books, etc, get donated to charity, freecycled or sold.

Being a good wife and mother. I feel it's my job to care for my family, to make sure they have what they need to succeed in whatever they do, to look after there health and their comfort. To remind them that they are my most favorite people on the planet.

Making my home a soft place to fall. Honestly I'm not that great of a housekeeper. Actually I hate cleaning :P But I can manage to keep the house tidy. I don't mind at all if it looks lived in. My living room is full of soft furniture with poofy cushions and throw pillows, with afghans and snuggly throws. I feel the home should be a refuge from the crappiness that the outside world sometimes throws at you, it should be warm, comfortable and welcoming.

Well, there ya go :)

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Grocery shopping on a budget

Recently I've been looking for ways to save money. We've been having a really tough time financially lately, things are starting to look up now though. I've visited several sites that give tips on saving money at the grocery store. One of them was titled 'Emergency grocery budget using only $75' Seventy five dollars! For an emergency?? I can do better than that.

I'm feeding a family of 3 and in an emergency situation I can shop so that we have food for $24. It may not be the healthiest thing going, but it's an emergency and temporary and it'll do. How do I do it?

First I shop at Aldi. Most of their food is very nice, we have to watch the produce and the breads at our local one because the produce is often very ripe and doesn't last too much longer after we buy it and the bread is often a little on the stale side. But otherwise, I love it there. You bring your own bags, which you know I'm all about reusing bags, or you can pick up a box there to tote your groceries home in. The prices are very reasonable. I can get a dozen eggs for 99 cents, much cheaper than the big grocery store.

Secondly, I pare down meals to the bare essentials. Does the spaghetti have to have meatballs? Do I have to buy the lean ground beef this week? Nope.

Thirdly, I look in the cupboards, do I have leftover salad dressing (great marinades in a pinch), yeast and flour (bread baking from scratch), rice (rice will make any meal more filling) etc.

Then I make a list keeping in mind any odd and ends ingredients I may have on hand and thinking about making dinners that will give us leftovers for lunch the next day.

So here is my list, as I said it's not the healthiest thing on the planet but we're talking emergency feeding of a family here so I have no problem with it as a temporary solution.

1 whole frozen chicken
1 pound ground beef ( I splurged on this as I had a bit extra after getting what I needed)
1 jar of pasta sauce
1 box elbow noodles
1 box coarse bread crumbs
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can chicken
1 jar peanut butter
1 dozen eggs
1 package shredded cheddar
1 package egg noodles

the meals:
  • Roasted chicken with canned veggies we had in the cupboard ( we used the leftover chicken parts to make stock and saved a little of the meat for soup later in the week)
  • Chicken casserole and baked mac and cheese (we used these for dinner for two nights and still had leftovers for lunch, they really stretch)
  • Spaghetti with meat sauce (using noodles from the pantry also good for two nights and leftover lunch)
  • Chicken noodle soup (from the chicken and stock earlier in the week and some carrots from the fridge)
  • and "beefy" soup (made from leftover elbow noodles, carrots, rice and beef bullion cubes from the pantry)
We had eggs and grits and cereal from the pantry for breakfasts, and peanut butter sandwiches for lunch when one of use didn't want leftover dinner.

If you want any of the recipes let me know.

As I said before it ain't classy but it'll do. Now that things are looking up I think I'm gonna splurge a little of fresh fruits and veggies this week :P

Sunday, June 15, 2008

More sharing, A Blast From the Past

As you know I've been working on my family tree. (Who decided it should be called a tree anyway?) and in so doing I've been going through some old pictures. Since I've finally figured out how to get the scanner to work on my printer, I've been scanning some in. Here are a few i found. This is me when i was but a sprout and the last one is me with my parents.



PatriciaJoeyand SuzannePowell1978

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Sharing my experiences

Generally speaking I'm a private person. I don't share my sorrows with those outside a small group of confidants, and frankly I don't share half the stuff with half of them :P So I haven't posted anything about Boo's recent problems. I'm trying to grow and make changes though, so here goes.

First, Boo lost his job. He worked for a Bank's investment division and since they didn't do so well last year they let many of the people go. He did get a nice severance package but it still sucks.

He began to complain of leg pain. He's had leg pain for awhile because of a pinched nerve but this was in a different part of his leg and much more intense. It was a blood clot, but we didn't know it at the time.

He woke up on the morning of May 12th saying it was hurting more than usual. He ended up trying to nap on the couch until the time he needed to get ready for a job interview he had that afternoon. He left for the interview, which was an hour away, at about noon. At around 2PM the phone rang. Caller ID said it was his cell phone so I answered expecting to hear a report on how the interview went. Instead, it was Boo, speaking in a very distracted and incoherent manner, breathing heavily and telling me he felt dizzy and that the interview people were calling a doctor for him. He said he'd call back when he knew something more.

We only have one car and the place he was interviewing is an hour away or I would've been on my way right then, as it was, I had to wait. In the meantime I went to webmd and put his symptoms into their tracker. That site said if your were experiencing those symptoms to see a Doctor immediately. That did not help my nerves.

An hour passed. I called his cell, only to find out that he was in the emergency room. I told him I was on my way, called my mom to ask if she'd drive me there, grabbed the Sprout , took a dose of Rescue Remedy (which I don't think I would've made it through without) and headed out the door. When I got to the hospital he was still in the emergency room, They gave me a pass and directions to get to him. When I got to his bed, it was empty. Imagine. Fortunately he was only in the bathroom up the hall.

I'll spare you the story of the next several days worth of worry, crying at random times, not sleeping, worrying, feeling guilty because the Sprout was having to spend so much time with Grandma, not eating properly, oh and did I mention the worrying and crying at the drop of a hat?

Turns out he had a blood clot in his right leg, part of the clot broke away and traveled up his vein (or is it artery?) through his heart and into his lung, where the piece of clot broke up again and got stuck. It's called a deep vein thromboses, a DVT and it caused a pulmonary embolism, a PE. They put him on anti coagulates and put a filter in to catch any other parts of the clot that might break off. The next day they went into the actual vein in his leg and tried to get the clot out. They told me it would take a little more or a little less than an hour, it took 3 and a half. That was a big spike in the worry/crying fits :) But they got 90 percent of the clot out and were positive about the rest of it dissolving overnight.

You can read all about it, the technical names for things and such, as well as some of his feelings about it on his SparkPeople page . He's home now. He's doing well with his recovery, he's able to do some light exercise on it now. I'm so glad he's mending and he's home. That experiences was one of the hardest of my life!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Is this my culture and heritage?

The title is a line from O Brother, Where Art Thou? I love that movie! But anyway. . . .

I've recently decided to make a family tree. Why you ask? I dunno. Boo says I doing it because I'm insatiably curious, works for me.

It started off so simply. I know when and where the sprout was born and me and my parents and then it gets a bit hairy. You don't realize how much you don't know until you start doing this. So far I've just been wracking my brain and bugging my mom (Hi Mom!) but I guess I'm gonna have to bite the bullet and talk to some relatives. Le sigh.

I want to add the usual things, dates of birth, marriage, death and other important dates. Middle and maiden names, where people lived. But I'd also like to add what they looked like, interesting things about them, what was their favorite color? Things like that. Trouble is that stuff is harder to find.

The detective in me is loving the search. I adore adding new things to the tree and hearing interesting stories and stirring my own memories. For instance this morning, I got an email from my mom with some information about her aunts and uncles (Do you know how many kids people had back then?!) and she mentioned three of the aunts who never married and lived together until death with no electricity or modern conveniences. She lamented that I'd never met these interesting and unique aunts. The thing is, that I had met them. My grandfather took me to visit them but I didn't remember it until she mentioned them this morning. I love things like that.

Things that may seem uneventful and boring to us, hardly worth mentioning, will be an interesting bit of our lives for future generations. My great grandmother, who I can only envision as a frail 88 year old woman, played basketball in her Converse sneakers in school.

I'm slightly comforted by the idea that what ever I chronicle about the generations closest to me will make it easier for any future descendants to make their family trees. That these future people may be terribly interested in what great great great grandma's favorite color was back in the old days of 2008.

Write stuff down, keep a diary, one of your future grandchildren will treasure it.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Honeygar and my cold

Awhile ago I read about something called honeygar. It's basically a mixed of honey and vinegar that you mix into water and drink. It's said to be helpful for colds and flu. A little while later I read that someone infused her honey with onion and garlic, so that her honeygar would have that extra antibacterial punch. So I decided to try. I filled a jar with honey, chopped up some garlic and onion and allowed it to sit for awhile. You can read about that here if you missed it.

Well this week I got a cold, probably from spending hours in doctor's office waiting rooms lately. By Wednesday I was laying on the couch, snuggled up under an afghan with all the throw pillows fussing at people who dared to walk in front of the TV :) Then I remember my honey.

I hadn't actually mixed the honey and apple cider vinegar together into the honeygar yet, and I didn't really remember the ratio and I didn't feel like going to find my notes on the subject so I did what I thought might be the right ratio. Which was 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar and 1 tablespoon garlic and onion honey into 1 large glass of water.

That, by the way, is not the correct formula. (The correct recipe is at the bottom of the post)It was not very tasty. I couldn't make myself drink the whole thing. I took large gulps to get it over with as soon as possible and got down maybe half the glass.

But even though it wasn't mixed exactly right, my bedtime that night I was feeling tons better. And the next day? Completely cured except for my voice which still sounded a little horse.

I don't know if the cold had run it's course or if the honeygar worked, but I'm definitely going to try it again next time.

Random bits of information:

  • garlic is antiviral
  • Lymph nodes swell during illness because they're filtering out and therefore filling with the poisons from your body. Apple cider vinegar works as a lymphic cleanser.
  • Some foods help form mucus and should be avoided during a cold, raw dairy, like cheeses, sweets, raw veggies and salads (your body has to heat them up before they can be digested taking energy away from the army fighting whatever bug you have in your system)

Recipe for Honeygar
2 parts apple cider vinegar
1 part honey
Mixed into one glass warm water.

The honey and the vinegar can be infused with herbs if you'd like.

Monday, May 12, 2008

A few more identified

If you remember this post, I promised to post more pictures as I identified them. Well here they are. I'm no expert, yet, but I referenced several books and website for my identification and then checked the list of vascular plants that the part provides. Here is what I came up with.

These are MayApple (Podophyllum peltatum)

May Apple
May Apple
The flowers hide under the leaves.

I believe this is a Mockernut Hickory tree (Carya alba)
Mockernut Hickory  Carya alba

This one, the only one I saw all day, is Catsby's Trillium (Trillium catesbaei)
Catesby's Trillium (Trillium catesbaei)
A better view of the flower
Catesby's Trillium (Trillium catesbaei)

and last but not least, I think this one is a Yellow Morel (Morchella)
Yellow Morel?

Built like a brick . . .

More Knittingness . . .

I didn't really have the cash to buy Mother's Day presents for my mom and grand mom so I decided to make them some dishcloths. Last time I was at Mom's house she said something about grandma wanting some so I thought 'What the heck?' Hi Mom *waves*

I made one for myself first to try out the pattern. I don't have a picture of it since I started using it as soon as it was finished :P But it's blue "bricks" with lighter blue between.

I really like this pattern. It's easy, it works up quickly, (I think I averaged 2 hours per cloth, watching tv) and the pattern is pretty easy to memorize so you don't have to keep count of rows and keep referring to the pattern. Plus I like the way the cotton feels in my hand.


I used size 7 needles and a total of 7 colors of Lily's Sugar 'n cream (Citrus Fruits, Sunshine, Rose Pink, Soft Ecru, Sage Green, Hot Blue, and Faded Denim if you're into that)

If you're from Ravelry my project link is here
For everyone else the pattern is available here

I think I like the ones where the bricks are the darker color. I love that you can use a very small amount of one of the yarns at a time. It's a great way to use up small bits! Yes some of the yarn used to make these came from the colorful bag monstrosity:P Waste not want no don'tcha know.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

The Everlasting Bagstopper

I haven't posted any knittingness lately so, here ya go :) I've been thinking of knitting a market bag for awhile now. I searched through Ravelry and downloaded and printed a few versions that I thought I'd try. Most of them ask for cotton or hemp yarn and all I had in the stash was small bits of cotton left over from dishcloths and soap socks. So I decided to use up those small bits and make a stripy bag. It started out well, but then I got bored with the stitch pattern and just started garter stitching all the way around.

Here it is

Lovely huh? I think I'm scared of that much color :P It's completely shapeless and the handle is waaay too long. It was spacious though :P I ripped it all out and now have little balls of dishcloth material again.

So, since I still wanted a bag and since I wanted one John would carry at the Farmer's Market and since I had a skein of plain light brown acrylic I decided to go with that. This time I followed the pattern, well almost, it's really hard for my knitting rebel side to follow all the directions, and came out with a lovely bag.


The pattern is called The Everlasting Bagstopper I really like it, it has a sturdy, flat, bottom with a few rows of smaller stitches to keep things from falling through. Samantha used it to haul her load of books back to the library and to haul the new ones home and it preformed well. So well, in fact, that I haven't seen it since. I'm going to have to go rescue it from her room soon. Perhaps I'll make her one of her own.

By the way, those two bags are holding the same things, a reusable water bottle, a copy of Stephen King's IT, and a skien of Paton's Merino.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

South Mountains State Park

This is where I spent my day yesterday. South Mountains State Park.

That is the Jacob’s Fork River. I love sitting out on the big rocks in the middle of the river and hearing nothing but the water rushing by and the wind. There was a squirrel who felt the need to fuss at me from his tree every so often though.

There is a lovely waterfall to see if you hike up the mountain. I didn’t hike up there today though, so no pictures. You can see it at their website linked above if you’d like.

I took lots of pictures of plants while we walked around. I don’t know what most of them are yet. I really need to work on my identification skills, but here are a few I recognize.

This is a Pawpaw tree (Asimina). You can see the dark purple flowers here. They’ll turn into fruits soon.


This is Dog Hobble (Leucothoe D. Don) I’ve heard it’s called this because a hunter’s dog will try to run through it when on the chase only to get all tangled up in the stems.

Dog Hobble

Dog Hobble

There was loads of Mountain Laurel (Kalmia latifolia L.) Although they weren’t flowering quiet yet.

Mountain Laurel

There were also quite a few dogwoods (Cornus) along the river bank. So lovely, you don’t see the branches at first so they just look like white flowers floating in the air.


There were lots of Tulip Poplar (Liriodendron) trees as well. Here is a flower and some leaves that the tree decided to drop onto my lunch plate.

Tulip Poplar Leaves and Flower

And lots of Rhododendron (Rhododendron L.) Which I’m not particularly fond of: P


UpClose Rhodedendron

I'll post the rest of the pics as I identify them.

Oh one more thing. After a rest I picked my backpack up from the ground and there was a caterpillar on it. I let it crawl onto my hand and took it over to the plants to release it. I held it near a leaf expecting it to crawl from my hand onto the leaf. Instead it sat on my hand and began eating the leaf! LoL it was amazing. I gently pulled away from the leaf and released it onto a stem of that plant instead. Crazy bugs.