Air Patrol for my Garden  

We put up martin houses last year and these purple martins are the result. I'm anxious to see if they keep the horned tomato worms out of the garden this year. So far, so good!

Here are a few of my winged garden helpers taking a brake from their patrols. They are perched on the top of a tomato cage.

Butt Covers & Cleaners (Diapers & Wipes)  

I have been piddling [teehee she said "piddle" :snicker:] around with cloth diapers for a while, but a few weeks ago, I switched to all cloth and found out it ain't so bad - especially since Princess does the laundry. LOL!

Ok, ok, I do the diaper changing and dunking. All she has to do is dump the bucket of diapers into the machine. So it's not like slave labor or anything.

Anyway, I'm using a combo of Fuzzi Bunz (I hope I misspelled that right), gDiapers (I use cloth in them and love 'em), and just plan ol' flats and prefolds.

I wanted more flats and prefolds 'cause I use them in the FBs, the gDiapers, and just by themselves. But the few I have were given to me at my baby shower over a year ago so I had no idea they wouldn't be easy to get.

I went looking for them at WallyWorld. I had to go twice before I found any, and when I did find them, they were both inexpensive and "cheap". Could've read thru them. And I have to say, I am not spending a bunch of money online for a fancy version of something as simple as a prefold diaper!

I thought, "That will be a good project for Princess and me!" So I looked into making some.

There are TONS of websites out there that are very helpful in this regard, but this one... "Sew a Diaper Stash for $30 or Less!" ...was especially inspiring to me.

And one day, Nanny (my mom --she used to have a real name but now she has kids and grandkids so it's only used at doctors' offices) and I went to the local "thrift store". I headed for the bedding section and found some really cute, thick, flannel sheets. Then I found one thinner, flat sheet made of flannel, and a fitted sheet made of heavy cotton knit (T-shirt fabric only weightier). I paid less than $10 for all of it. And today I picked up some thread for Nanny's serger (overlock sewing machine)!

Here's my loot (and my stained, ripped, linoleum floor and Pickle trying to find more banana in the banana peel)...

I see homemade diapers in Pickle's future.... Stay tuned, this could be funny.


Pineapple Coconut Pie  

I made this for the whole family a while back, and even the coconut-haters liked it.

Pineapple Coconut Pie

  • 1 regular pie crust
  • 3/4 to 1 cup sugar (it's up to you)
  • 1 TBSP all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup flaked coconut
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 can (I think its 14oz) crushed pineapple, drained
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted

Mix sugar, four and coconut. Lightly beat eggs; stir in pineapple, then coconut mixture. Add butter and mix well. Pour into crust and bake at 350º for 30 minutes. Sprinkle more coconut on top and back in the oven it goes, 'til the coconut is toasted.


Oh, That Explains It?  

My Husband was flipping thru the channels and came upon something that made my daughter exclaim, "Parachute Racing?!". Apparently, people were running a race with parachutes trailing behind them. And so the next question was, "Daddy, why do they have on the parachutes?". To which my very intelligent husband gave an answer that involved words like aerodynamics, drag, wind resistance, etc. My adorable daughter didn't miss a beat and replied with, "Oh. I thought it was to slow them down." ºÜº


MockDonald's Apple Pies  

When I was growing up, the best part of going to McDonald's was the fried apple pies! I was very disappointed when they switched to the baked ones they sell these days.

Well, an online friend turned me onto a homemade version [thanks HB!] and I cooked some up the other day. It's still not quite the same but it's as close as you're likely to get at home.

I bought some egg roll wrappers and apples in the organic section of the grocery store (the wrappers aren't organic, but are "all natural"). I chose Red Delicious apples, instead of a more traditional baking apple, because.... well, because they were cheaper. ;o)

Normally I would have peeled and sliced the apples, put them in a pot with a little honey, cinnamon, and lemon juice, and then cooked them down a little to make a pie filling. But because Red Delicious apples are not very firm, I decided not to cook them and simply tossed the slices in some lemon juice and cinnamon, then sprinkled a little sugar over them to pull out some moisture. I let them sit for a while and stirred them every once in a while to help with the "cooking" the sugar was doing.

Meanwhile, I pulled out the egg roll wrappers and filled a small baby food jar with water. I put some coconut oil in a pan and put it on med-high heat.

The next step was to assemble and fry! With my finger, I ran some water all around the edge of a wrapper and a line down the middle. Then placed a spoonful of apple filling on one half of the wrapper, folded the other half over it, and crimped all the way around with a fork. Poked a hole in the top of the pie (so it won't explode!) and deep fried it in the hot oil, turning once.

When it reached the golden brown and delicious stage on both sides, I took it out and let it drain on a paper towel (or you can do what my mom always did and drain on a brown paper bag).

That's it! Yummy!


Chili Recipe... Not Really.  

When I make chili I usually try to stretch it out over two or three meals. I start by getting out my favorite "No Beans", tomato-based chili recipe. Not that I follow it, but it is nice to have a frame of reference.

Then I make the chili but I leave out the tomatoes... well most of the tomatoes. I do add tomato paste or a small can of tomato sauce. And even though this leaves me with a lot less total mass in the pot, I still add the full measure of seasonings (and sometimes more). I also use beef broth to keep it loose enough to not stick and burn. What I end up with is a concentrated chili flavored meat mixture (chili starter).

Then I divide it up according to how many meals I have planned for it.

Some ideas are:

  1. Chili, of course. :0) Just add a few cans of stewed tomatoes, kidney beans, and a little beef broth if you need it. Let it simmer for a while so the flavors can get to know each other better, and there you have it.
  2. Chili Mac. Add some beef broth and a small can of tomatoes, drained, or tomato sauce, or ketchup - whatever you like (or you could leave it as is and just use less of it). Simmer. Add to your favorite mac n cheese recipe.
  3. Chili cheese fries. Same as above. Then fry some fries, make a cheese sauce... you get the idea.
  4. And an all time favorite - chili dogs.


Here We Go...  

I don't know what I will do with this little home on the web. Having never so much as kept a diary I'm not sure I have anything to talk about. But...

I'm a big-time info junkie, so I may use it to share my latest finds.

It'd be fun to post photos of my latest art, sewing, or craft project. You'll find that I dream up a lot of them, start very few of them, and finish almost none of them. LOL!

Seeing as I'm a mom, you know I've got to talk about how incredibly adorable my children are (it's required by the mommy union or I'll loose my right to buy junk-filled ice cream and say it's for the kids).

And although I hope to keep it light and fun I have been known to break out with an exhortation on occasion.

One day I may even tell the story behind the name of this blog.