Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Feeding the Birds

Yikes! Been a tiny bit since I've stopped in and said "Hello!" to ye ol blog. "Hello!"

Since the weather has gotten colder and the leaves have fallen, I like to start feeding the wild birds. I make a suet cake that's really inexpensive and gives the birds some high calorie/fat that they need to keep warm in the coming winter months. I'd like to share it with you in case you'd like to try it. Be warned though. They attract a lot of birds and they can go through it pretty quick. Especially when a flock of Starlings come around, as they can mow it down in 2.3 seconds. (I don't like those bird, they're bullies and I shew them away when I see them.) But even without the starlings you can go through them pretty quick. The suet cakes I make are super easy and made with ingredients you probably have in your pantry. So it's fun especially if you have little kiddies that like wildlife.
I actually don't use suet which is rendered beef fat you can get at the butcher. I use either lard or vegetable shortening. Here's the ingredients I used this time.

3/4 cup vegetable shortening or lard
rounded 3/4 cup of chunky peanut butter
1 1/2 cup ground corn meal (no additives just ground corn)
1 1/2 cup quick cook oatmeal
1 cup (about) of sunflower seeds.
a handful of raisins if you want.
containers to put the suet in to solidify
string if your not using cages specifically made for suet
(I purchase most of these ingredients in the bulk department at the grocery store. It keeps the cost way down. I also purchase the cheaper peanut butter. The birdies don't care. ;0) )

Melt the peanut butter and shortening in a sauce pan until it's completely melted. Takes about a minute or so. Turn off the heat and add the rest of the goodies.
After all the ingredients are mixed up I put them in containers lined with foil and pop them in the freezer.
The containers I use will make a cake that will fit the little cages that I purchased for this purpose. If your not wanting to put them in the cages make sure and put yarn in them before you freeze so you can hang them. I've used muffin tins as well! The freezer works the best as they can tend to crumble and they don't have to be completely frozen but good and solid. Make sure and use foil. It really helps keep them together when you pop them out of the container.

As I walked into the house after placing the cakes in the feeders I had about 15 Juncos and Chickadees waiting for their treat.






Saturday, August 18, 2012

Ocean Camping..

Yes indeed. I went camping. I'm not the best camper in the world. I mean, I have a great time when I'm there but sleeping in the damp and the cold is not what I like to do. I had a great time though because I LOVE the ocean and the company we had was great. Unfortunately, the only full day we had there was overcast and a bit chilly while the days before and the day we left were warm and beautiful. That's the chance you take when you live in the Northwest. You never know, REALLY, what your going to get. Especially, at the ocean.

We went with a real good friend from our church and his kids. He's a single Dad with six kidlets. He's one of the best Dads I know and his kids are so much fun to be with. We all had a great time, even if the weather was a little uncooperative.


Here's my hubs with the pups.Tucker, the cocker spaniel NEVER relaxed. He was a nervous wreck the whole trip. Which makes Momma a nervous wreck. Chelsea was in her element. She loved it.
My sweet Honey Bunches of Oats. He's so sweet, I love my little man.
Here they are trying to figure out how to hydroplane the little boogie board
Trying to dig to the other side of the world.
Pretty trees.
The trail leading to the ocean from our camp site.

Even though it rained and the clouds refused to budge we had a wonderful time with our friends. We're grabbing those sites again for next year!






Monday, July 30, 2012

Tucker, my sweet little furry boy

I've had dogs all my life. Big one's, little ones and those in between. They've all been great dogs and wonderful companions. I have to tell you about one that has my heart. Tucker. I love my Chelsea-chilibeans (golden retriever). She's a wonderful dog and is sick smart! She loves me and I love her. But boy oh boy! this guy has just got my heart. I don't love my pets differently. That would be like trying to say which kid you like better! You can't! Tucker just has me wrapped though. Every time I look at him I want to squeeze him. He makes my heart melt.
Tucker does something that cracks me up and I can't figure out why he does it. When he's not sleeping on his throne (the couch) he's usually sitting in front of me, or close to me, staring at me. He just sits there and looks at me. He sits about two to three feet away and just sits and stares. Sometimes he gets up on the couch since we have a pet friendly home;0) and sits next to me and, yup, stares at me. It's so cute! I do want to add that Tucker is a Cocker Spaniel with thyroid issues. He doesn't have a real high energy level and his long walks every day usually poop him out. I play with him all the time, this is just something he does in addition to his cuteness.

This day he brought something along.
Looks like a big ol cigar in his mouth! He stayed like this for a long time. Isn't he the cutest!!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Fairy Poppet and Friends

My partner received the poppet I made, so I thought I'd post some pictures of what I created.

I worked really hard on her and I'm pretty proud. It was hard to send her away! I changed a few things on her. I didn't add the tail, I can never get those things turned. I added toes and fingers and pointy ears. I wish I had a better picture of the wings.


I sent her a few friends too. Here's the traditional poppet half the size.
And the newest Cupcake doll!

The Poppet and the Cupcake patterns can be found here. Good Cookie Creations
Take a look here too! Craftster



Saturday, June 16, 2012

Sock Monkey Swap

Mr. Henry the Kendo Warrior Wannabe has arrived at his destination so I thought I would post some pictures I took before he left...






Since Henry is more of a lover than a fighter he's gone to his destination without weapons. (he was getting tired of nicking his tail anyway..;0)) I made his Kendo warrior outfit out of a large Black T-shirt. I used pretty much the whole T-shirt in making his outfit. He has pants a shirt and the skirt that ties around.It certainly does NOT follow the tradition of the Kendo garb since the pleats in the front and back all have meaning and they're all connected (Henry's is not) I didn't think Henry would mind and I'm hoping my partner didn't. I'm not that experienced with making doll or sock monkey clothes, but I'm pretty happy with how it turned out.

Oatmeal Pancakes..

I've made these pancakes for the last several weekends and my family and I just love them. I thought I would share the recipe with you! I also made homemade maple syrup. I'll put the recipe here as well.

Oatmeal Pancake Recipe



I double the recipe. I've used whole wheat flour in the recipe but didn't like it at all. I've also used regular milk but cut it down a bit so my batter isn't runny. I like a thicker batter.
These are soooooo good!

We ran out of maple syrup so I thought I would try and make some. Here's what I did..
In a sauce pan combine:
1 cup water
1/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon maple flavoring
a dash of salt
(I added a bit of cornstarch to it as well, since I like a thicker syrup. I add about a 1/2 teaspoon to a little of the syrup I pull out into a cup. Mix it up so there's no lumps and put it into the sauce pan with the other ingredients. You certainly don't have to do this, since boiling it down will thicken it a bit.)
Heat the ingredients over medium heat until it dissolves and thickens up a bit.
This is really good syrup. It does need to be refrigerated since there's no preservatives in it. I'll be making this from now on.

I hope you try the recipes...the pancakes are sooooo yummy! Can't go wrong with Oatmeal.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Swap Dotee's

I wanted to post the Dotee's I made for my swap partners...


This little one was to look a bit bug like. I debated on adding hair but didn't in the end. It just seemed to much and I liked the little antenna's showing. It was to represent Nature and Tranquility...the little bells tinkle in the wind.


This one is to represent Davy Jones of the Monkee's. My partner liked the Monkee's and said she had never received a Dotee of the Monkee's but she puts it on her questionnaire in hopes. I was determined to get her a Monkee Dotee! I used felt for the hair and beads say The Monkee's, Davy Jones and I'm a Believer. The guitar was made with Shrinky Dinks.
This was a fun easy swap to do. Dotee's are super fun to make and pretty easy and you can run wild with the creativity.

Monday, June 11, 2012

"Candy" Perler Biggie Bead Bracelet...

I was cruising Pinterest the other day and found a neat little craft idea to make with melted perler beads. (Craft and Creativity) .
I made one using the larger Biggie Beads and thought I would share with you....Here's what it looks like finished.

I was looking for the smaller "traditional size" like the tutorial and ran across these Biggie Beads, I've not seen those before. They're quite a bit larger and much easier for my old hands to place on the pan. Anywho.. Heat your oven to 250 degrees F. For the smaller beads only heat to 200F Grab yourself a pan and line it with either parchment or aluminum foil. And lay out your beads like this...


Put them in your hot oven and keep an eye out. Mine took about 15-20 minutes to melt down so they looked like little beads. The little beads will take a lot less time so make sure and watch if you use them. There was no odor that I could tell but put your fan on, just in case. They look like this when they're ready to come out...


I smushed them down with a magazine so they had more of a uniform look to them, but it's not necessary to do that. Let them cool. I used Stretch Magic cord to sting them, tie it off and you have yourself a little perler bead "candy" bracelet! This would be a great craft for young girls.(Supervision with the oven of course) The beads are large enough, yet the colors are a bit limited with the larger beads but still colorful enough to look like a candy bracelet.





Monday, May 28, 2012

Memorial day..

I come from a military family. My Dad was a career Marine who fought in Vietnam. All my cousins have served as well. I have a great uncle that was killed in the attack of Pearl Harbor. I'm grateful for all that they have fought for and protected. I'm thankful for my country. I'm thankful for all those who serve in our military. Stay safe and come home soon...

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Beach day!

Today was the first beach day of the year. It was warm and the wind wasn't blowing too hard. I took some pictures to share with you.
Here are my guys....
looking for creatures....
BRRRRR! the water is cooold! But yes..there were ladies there in their biskinny's AND in the water..only in the Northwest. LOL!
I liked this picture...
and lastly..

I would have loved to have been aboard. ;0) Hope your all enjoying this holiday weekend remembering our veterans and all they've done for our country.
I'm One Proud American.






Friday, May 25, 2012

Trying new things...

I picked up PolymerCafe' magazine the other day and I was so excited to see one of my most favorite clay artists had an article about her AND a tutorial on how to make one of her pieces! Her name is Dawn Schiller. If you haven't seen her work, don't miss out on her makings. You can find her here at oddfae... this site has all her web addy's, etsy and many good things to check out. Check out the mag too!


Well. I'm going to try the tutorial! EEP! I've only made little miniature cakes and donuts, this is going to be a bit further out of my comfort zone. That's ok though. Trying new things is good! If I could just get my perfectionism out of the way. UGH! I love her pieces and thought it would be a hoot to have little goblins and elves peeping out of cute places in my home. She has some books I'm excited to get as well. Starting with Clancy and getting my feet wet in the world of polymer clay should be a good start for me. Here's Clancy....
She gives step by step instructions...I do think I can do it! I don't have access to the form she uses and I'm too impatient to wait for an order to come, so I'll find something to put his cute little face on. I'm off to the craft store to pick up some polymer clay and hopefully, working on it this weekend, I'll have a cute little man's face and a desire to do more. Yay! Excited!!!!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Thankful Thursday

I'm wanting to try some weekly themes for my blog. I thought a great way to start would be Thursday's being Thankful Thursdays. Being thankful for even the silly things can be healing..I think..
Today I'm thankful for:

My family...the people I learn to love and laugh with. I'm thankful for love and laughing. Laughter is good medicine.

Strawberries.....



I love Strawberries. Anything strawberry really. Strawberries remind me of summer coming and warm weather and sunshine, which means hiking and trips to the beach. I'm thankful for all those things. Those things make me really happy to be alive.

hmmmmm....peppermint tea...it's a stomach settler. It's a good thing.

Friends...Have I told ya'll lately, I have some awesome friends?

Being creative...I wish everyone would tap into their creative side. It's like seeking out another part of your soul that stays hidden until you get glue, scissors, fabric, paper, beads etc. in your hands and suddenly that part awakens!

I'm thankful for her...

yeah...don't mind the stink eye..she got shy all of a sudden. This girl..whenever I feel a bit blue she's always there to love on me. She's always happy to see me...even at 2:00am.

and these socks...
They have little sunshines on them...so even though the weather here is dumping buckets..I can still walk around spreading sun shine. Obligatory dog butt in the background.
What are you thankful for today?

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

What to do..what to do....

I had a dilemma today. My son's birthday party was on Saturday and I'd made a five layer chocolate cake, which was delish but I had all this leftover frosting that I didn't want to throw away. I put it in a container on the counter, which makes such a huge temptation for those trying to eat better. I did well today but had a chocolate craving...so what does one do with this?

This. Chocolate craving satisfied.

My mom used to put graham crackers and frosting in our lunch growing up. Not only was my chocolate craving satisfied I was able to have a bit of childhood nostalgia thrown in as well. Calories still stay the same though...;0/

Thursday, May 10, 2012

We all need a little love....

Sometimes...when I'm feeling particularly blue. Like today. Feeling a little unloved, unappreciated and just a bit sad.
Some say to look up....I look down.

My sweet little furry babies...they love unconditionally...appreciate every little pet or treat and make me a lot happier.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Spring is here...

Spring is here and I for one am sooo thankful. We had a beautiful day on the weekend and decided to head on over to Molback's a local nursery. I'm wanting to get some practice with my camera. Although, it was an absolutely beautiful warm spring day, the sun was too bright for picture taking but I want to share anyway!

The colors are stunning in the sun.



Loving all the different colors of pots...such happy colors.

Have a wonderful day today!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Away...

I've been away. I've been working through some stuff and just haven't been myself, but things are starting to turn around and my interest in crafting and my blog is starting to get a fire under it. I even quit one of my most favorite internet sites Craftster. I haven't crafted anything in months. Anyone go through that? Hmmm.


But, like I said, things seems to be turning around. Renewed my subscription to Craftster and joined a swap. A Dotee swap. Those are super fun to make and easy. I'll be getting my partners tomorrow and I'm actually excited to get crafting again. One things that brings me a lot of joy, is making things for other people. I love to do it. I'll be posting my process with just enough hints without giving it all away to my partners.


Well, I hope everyone who reads this enjoys the day. Take a deep breath...life is good.