Friday, April 30, 2010

Politics etc.

Today a headline caught my eye on Yahoo's home page concerning former President George (Little) Bush.  Apparently the tide has begun to change in the public's opinion concerning the title given him as worse president ever.  I just shook my head in disbelief and shared the headline with the gentlemen working on my house.  My point was what a fickle bunch we Americans are.  I remember 6 months after President Obama won the election he was beginning to fall out of favor with several Democrats.  No, I can't cite the source but it was on Yahoo.  I don't read the papers nor do I watch local news.  All I could think in my mind was they were like a bunch of rats abandoning the ship they chose to sail on.  When I posted the link to the article on Facebook this morning, it was mostly  done with incredulity rather than a seed to start a Bush Bash.  But incite it did.  I'm just tired of it all.  We have been a fickle nation of extremely lucky people but the tide is starting to change, for some time now, for the worse and it is incumbant on us voters to make certain our political leaders are held to task for the decisions they make that affect all of us.  I subscribe whole heartedly to the phrase "Do you know when a polititian is lying?  Everytime his lips move."  Why is Bush's popularity on the rise?  Why did Democrats begin to grumble about Obama when he hadn't been in office for very long?  Ofcourse, it's all rhetorical and my belief is we are too far gone for anyone to do any good. No one will convince me to think any differently and I wouldn't think of trying to change anyone else's mind.  We are who we are, another advantage to being American in that we have been able to make choices that other nations can't.  For now.....

Finally Friday

Day 5 of the renovation has been a short day. The dining room is prepped to texture and paint, the living room ceiling and new vent covers is beautiful. I wish we could tear down this house and rebuild. I asked the guys if I could have the kitchen for the weekend so they will start on that Monday. It's humid and warm but there are t-storms coming and a bit of a cool off as well. I've been doing "tutes" on youtube this morning searching for every kind of paper and fabric flower made. I'm in love with flowers. I've been making wired ribbon ones for over 15 years and have a boatload of those made up. They look beautiful on clothing, headbands, shoe clips or hair accessories. The tiny ones make darling earrings. Guess I'm back in the 60s Hour of the Flower Power, :D. I plan to get some herbies in this afternoon if the rain holds off along with one tomato bush. The lasagna bed is about 4 inches deep in leaves (absolute gold) so the newbies should have plenty of food and moisture as the leaves break down and the wormies come to stay. All the fish in the pond have managed to survive last week's ponding disaster and I found Denzel! I thought he had died but I saw him in the sun this morning. Just like his namesake, he is absolutely gorgeous. He's a fantail so is adorned in beautiful fins and tail. He's just really hard to see and he's always been shy. I'm glad he's still with me. The koi are more feisty than they have been in ages so maybe the total water changeout invigorated them. Probably a better oxygen ratio as well. I'm off to watch l more tute and craft some more. Happy Friday everyone!!

How to make the Tim Holtz grunge roses/flowers

Thursday, April 29, 2010

What is This Tree?

What is This Tree?

Easy Tex Mex Casserole

1 lb. lean ground beef
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 cup of salsa
1 can enchilada sauce (red or green)
1/2 lb. grated cheese
tortilla chips

Brown ground beef.  While browning crush enough tortilla chips to cover bottom of a 9 x 13 casserole dish. Add soups, salsa and enchilada sauce to browned beef.  Simmer 5 - 10 minutes stirring to combine well.  Pour over chips in pan, top with cheese and bake 25 minutes at 350 degrees.  A great last minute meal on busy evenings.  Freezes well.  Try different flavored chips as well.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Craft Project: "Honey Do" Hammer

Craft Project: "Honey Do" Hammer

Craft Project: Balloon Bouquet Barrette

Craft Project: Balloon Bouquet Barrette

What Day Is It???

Good mornng from the Lone Star State! Day 3 of the remodel: Not sure what all will get done today but I' m going window shopping. I have coupons for Hobby Lobby, Michaels and Joanns so I might pick up some really cheapy stuff. My hair is nasty, probably has all kinds of "ceiling stuff" in it so this will probably be a hat day. One of my favorite days. I could go wild collecting and hoarding hats. I could do an entire wall in hats. I have a vintage Elsa Schiaparelli that belonged to my Mams, 1960's vintage. That is my prized possession. I love Elsa and Coco Chanel. And Madam Vionet, etc. You get the pic.

My comfort zone has become my craft room this week. Mike bought me a big screen TV for my birthday which makes it so much nicer to hang in here. My hoard is finally beginning to dwindle. I've been watching "Hoarders" on A&E so that kinda keeps me in check. Mike will ask why I'm watching that junk but it scares me to hear those people say, "I may need that someday" because I've said that a couple of hundred times myself. He has no idea how big my stashes are or he would nominate me for that show. Now I've started saving cute boxes, ie cereal, rice, dog food, etc. to die cut and make into jewelry or magnets. One never knows....

I'm off to make myself presentable to the world. That's probably a lost cause, LOL. Hugs to all and Happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Update on update. The ceilings are starting to look good. They are not textured/painted yet....I can't wait. Got the new lighting in the kitchen and what a difference it makes. Beautiful. I don't see how the guys work with dust and damp smell everyday. I've got to escape tomorrow. The odor is starting to wear a bit thin. Poor John and Doug. Man, I'm a woosie. Can't wait to get new countertops and do something with the cabinets. More mess. Yipee!!

Lasagna Gardening

Lasagna gardening refers to a method of layering materials in the garden bed, hence lasagna. There is a book about it I found years ago called, Lasagna Gardening, can't think of the author's name right now. Patricia something. The no digging, no tilling, no weeding, no kidding hooked me right in. To start your garden layer cardboard box and/or newspaper right over the grass or weeds. No need to use plastic; that hinders drainage and all the little anaerobic activity going on. Over the newspaper layer compost, leaves, stuff you sweep up, twigs anything organic....no pet poop though. Wet down each layer as you go and just keep adding to your bed. The pefect time to start is in fall when leaves are plentiful and you can just let the bed "cook" until spring. But it's so simple and a reliable way to garden you can start anytime. I put down a bunch of newspaper on my existing bed yesterday with about 4 inches of leaves saved all winter long in bags. I will continue to layer until it settles very little. My beds are raised about 10 inches. I usually add a bedding mix from Calloway's that contains expanded shale which helps maintain the moisture leve. Just e me with any questions you might have.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Easy Chocolate Cake

Here's a super easy, moist cake recipe for those "I've got to have something chocolate" emergencies.

1 box chocolate cake mix (doesn't matter which)
1 container coconut/carmel frosting (german chocolate)

Fix cake per instructions on box. After it's mixed, fold in frosting. Bake in a bundt pan per instructions on box. You've got it all...frosting IN the cake.
Today is the day we start updating our 31 year old home. Too new to be a classic; too old to be trendy. We are starting with removing the popcorn from the ceiling. Mike's idea.....apparently that is the thing to do now. It's never really bugged me. Yes, I thought it was stupid but, hey, whatever. We're having new canned lighting in the kitchen to make it brighter and replacing countertops. I guess we'll go with granite which is okay with me. Wilsonart has some beautiful laminates and I would LOVE to have wood countertops but granite will be beautiful. Then I'll ruminate for a while on what I want to do with the cabinets. Alot of painting needs to be done as well as putting tile floors in strategic places and ripping up carpet. We will probably try to tackle that ourselves. Mike is very good at tiling and we put our Wilsonart laminate floors in the kitchen ourselves with alot of help from family. Mike just spent $$$ on a new filter for the pond so I'll have to watch my pennies for a bit, LOL. Hobby Lobby does have a 40% off coupon in their ad this week. Pick that up at their website: www.hobbylobby.com I found some tutes on Youtube last week for darling crochet flowers and have been working on those, along with the paper, fabric and boxes I'm die cutting for jewelry, bookmarks, whatever! Keep me in your positive thoughts today as I hate messes, unless it's my craft room or the guest room or my craft closet....hmmmm probably shouldn't have gone down that road. Oh, and, buy more Avon!! It will go straight into the Brod Abode house fund, LOL. www. youravon.com/dbrod

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Sunday in North Central Texas

Hi all: It's a beautiful day here today. I think I'm coming down with something other than allergies....I've been freezing all day long. I need to work on the backyard which becomes our outdoor home in the summer. I think I would look kinda foolish out there in my sweat jacket and socks, LOL. Anyway, I've been promising to post some good drink recipes from our Bunko repertoire. We have great food too, which to me, is most important. Here are some of the drinks we've had over the years.

Pink Pantie Pulldowns (we've heard them called droppers to)
1 can frozen pink lemonade
3/4 can vodka
2 cans Fresca

Use the lemonade can to measure all. That's kind of the official drink of our group. I tinted it orange for Halloween last year and my friend LeAnne tinted it green for our March game night.
This originally came from my hair stylist Kristi Luse. Adjust vodka for your taste or leave out and use recipes as punch. Enjoy!!

Now, Mike brought this one home and I thought I would fall over dead when I took a swig. It's not my favorite but I'm sure there are those who would find it attractive.

Funky Cold Medina
For 1 drink
1 oz. Absolut Vodka
1 oz. Southern Comfort
1 oz. Blue Curacao
Cranberry juice to dilute or fill the glass.

Weight Watchers 2 point Margaritas
Frozen--ice to fill blender
1 tub Crystal Light lemonade
1 can Fresca
8 shots Tequila (oz).
Blend until smooth

On the Rocks--
1 tub Crystal Light lemonade
2 cans Fresca/1 can water
8 shots (oz) Tequila
Pour over ice cubes

We have a great time and eat alot of M&Ms (which we use to keep score) I'll post food recipes in the future.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

April Kringle Klub

Tomorrow is the 25th of the month. Sundays are a bit harder to work around due to church, family activities and commitments. Select a movie to watch or cd to listen to. Grab your Christmas cookbooks, tear out recipes or whatever and look through to pick out the items you want to bake/cook for gifts this year. If you do gifts in a jar now is the time to pick those up. During spring alot of the Big Box stores have tons of canning supplies usually through the summer. Start a menu list in a notebook or on the computer. See how easy that is? Put some music on the MP3 player and enjoy selecting yummy foods. Let me know what you did this weekend.
Happy Saturday everybody!  More later....

Friday, April 23, 2010

Noon update on the pond. We are still doing okay out there, thank God. My oldest koi, Yoko, I've had for 11 years. Yoko had a mate, Sushi, but she passed away about 3 years ago. And yes, they all have names. All the koi do and a couple of the comets, fantails and shubunkins. Denzel, my fantail that turned totally black, died a couple of weeks ago. I LOVE Denzel Washington and this fish was just as gorgeous as he is. The other koi are Arizona, Queequeg, and Poseidon. Arizona and Poseidon and Yoko are all males. Queequeg is the only female. Now, it is very difficult to "sex" fish but with koi, the different sexes have different behaviors and the males seem to be a bit sleeker. The females will let you pet them quite a bit but the males won't. How strange is that, LOL? I plan to work out back today and keep an eye on them. They are pretty ravenous since the winter fast so I will start feeding them high protein twice a day.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Friendships

We must never take anything for granted. Family, friends....they will not always be there. Some by choice others by the divine will of our Lord and Savior. I am a broken person this morning thinking of the past 6 years that have been wasted with a good friend due to what was logically a terrible misunderstanding. That precious friend now only has a few months or more, God willing, to be on this earth. I regret the years that have been wasted hoping someday that we would be able to get past tempers and thoughtlessness. Don't take anything for granted. We do not know what lies ahead but we can hold loved ones close and ask hearts to heal. I love you DP

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Soup gets a thumbs up.

The soup recipe I posted last night was a success. Mike and I both loved it and I'm spending the night with Mom tonight and brought some up for lunch tomorrow. We went to Michael's in Denton today shopping and I got a couple of things for 80% off. An entire alphabet for Cuttlebug that had been 79.00 (we know how expensive those things are) for 14.99. I got a Fiskars hand drill recommended by Cathie Filian of Creative Juice for 7.99. It retailed for 24.99. Pretty exciting stuff. Have a good night everyone and try the soup recipe from yesterday's blog.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Okay, the soup is on the stove and it smells pretty good. I'll let you know what DH thinks about it when he gets home. He's all steak and potatoes and doesn't like "breakfast for dinner". The recipe didn't call for any seasoning so I threw in some salt and pepper. I'm thinking maybe a small block of cream cheese might have been good as well.
Creamy Chicken Tortilla Soup

3-10oz. cans diced tomatoes and green chilies
4-141/2 oz. cans chicken broth
1-30oz. can refried beans
1 cup whole kernel corn
4 cups shredded, cooked chicken
Corn tortilla strips or chips

Combine tomatoes, broth, corn and refried beans in large pot. Stir until blended. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add chicken and heat thoroughly. Garnish with chips, avocado, cheese, green onions or black olives. Hope this turns out well.

Monday

Well, here it is Monday and I got nothing done in the backyard this weekend. It rained and we need better drainage out there. Always have. It's a swamp and I can't get to anything without waders on. Maybe later in the week.

I'm off to the grocery store and back home to work on UFOs and the laundry

Saturday, April 17, 2010

I stumbled on the Purina All Star site this morning and watched the most awesome video about an elephant seal communicating with a human. Absolutely unbelieveable. The girl sitting there doesn't really move very much or touch, but does lean in for several kisses. It's the sweetest thing ever and I have to say, even better than the "A Cat Betrayed" video. Please check it out.

Ran to Target this morning for more diet coke plus and printer cartridges and then to Michael's for a Sizzix die. I'm making Lauren and Jordan some collages for their media room in the new house. I think they will be adding to the family this weekend. No, not a baby, but a furr baby. They have found a French Spaniel (I think that's what the breed is) that is about a year old, black and white. Really cute and sounds like he has a super personality. I'm always glad to add to the grandpets....this makes 3. Lauren lost her precious Lady in October and I know Jasper will be such a comfort and joy for her. It's so hard to lose our animals but the pain we suffer when they are gone is worth the years of joy they bring.

Mike gets in tonight and I'm trying to clean up a bit and do laundry. I swear it looks like Animal House here. Have a great weekend.

Friday, April 16, 2010

This is still working. I'm totally paranoid now about each and every thing computery. I started watching Trauma this week and am catching up from "on demand". I usually turn these types of programs off after the first big time screwup, i.e. CPR through clothing, not using oxygen except via a canula...that one REALLY bugs me. I probably have too much time on my hands and my only contact during the day is with my furr babies. This one is pretty good except for that dang canula. And the fires? Hollywood, they are way to pretty and y'all don't know your backdrafts from your flashovers. Like I said, alot of time on my hands. But I've cleaned on the kitchen today and crafted like crazy.
Welcome to my new blog! Hopefully, I will be faithful to post. I miss having Facebook since it was deleted by UH (unknown hacker) but perhaps I'll use blogger for a while. Mike is still in Minn. with Josh and hopefully they are having a relaxing, good time together. I just love to go up there. I've been making alot of jewelry and die cutting flowers to make pins. I need to be working in the "lasagna garden" but it's pretty humid outside right now so that's a good enough excuse for me. I will get out later.....I've got scads of leaves in yard bags from last fall to layer on the newspaper. The leaves should be rotting nicely and make the wormies happy. I may go buy a few more worms as well.

Better go. I have to run to Target for cokes on sale this week. I just love the diet coke plus and I can't find it anywhere except at Target. Target is right next door to Hobby Lobby and they have a 40% off coupon this week. I just love both of those stores.