Sunday, August 27, 2017

Week 88, 8-27-2017

Thoughts and Quotes: It's not what you gather, but what you scatter that tells you what kind of life you've lived.        Helen Walton 

And scatter she did. After Sam died and she was president of Walmart, she gave a $300 million donation to the University of Arkansas - the largest private donation to a university to date. And she passed on the "scatter" gene. It's her daughter Alice who founded the Crystal Bridges Museum (with free admission sponsored by Walmart). 

And my "scattering" has begun, but on a tiny, tiny scale. I've passed on two sets of placemats, four sets of napkins, two sets of napkin rings, a pie plate, and a loaf pan. If you see anything on my blog which speaks to you, let me know. It might be something I'll be "scattering" in the future. If not, I keep THE LIST of things for my kids to pass on after I'm gone to those who've asked for them, before they put everything in a garage sale.

Busy week, but a short blog today - here we go.

The Pepper and Pals report: Monday night, the two white babies came for dinner with their mother. One was gone for five days and the other six. I have no idea where they went or where they ate. They came back Tuesday and Wednesday nights, missed Thursday, back on Friday, and absent on Saturday. Obviously, someone else is feeding these two sweeties. They don't look as if they've missed any meals. Still no sign of the other two siblings.

Tasting: Tuesday I went to Joplin and had my car serviced and had lunch with Lil' Bro' and Lil' Sis'. The day was rainy and overcast; then I saw these clouds up ahead. Just had to take a photo. They looked like a strange mountain range.

We went to a restaurant called Crabby's which was a welcome change from the chains. I left my camera in the car, so Jim took the photos with his phone. Phone cameras just get better and better, don't they?
Becky had a seafood pasta

Jim had seared ahi

And Pepper and I had fish and chips

Wednesday I had more tasting with friends at Hu Hot Mongolian Grill for lunch. I highly recommend it, and you can see if there's one near you HERE. The selection of foods and sauces seems to be endless. After you fill your bowl(s), you take it(them) to a huge round grill and watch it being cooked. If you leave a tip in the jar, you can bang the gong and the cooks all yell "HU HOT!".  They serve brown or white rice to share at the table, and it's all you can eat of everything, including beverages. Sorry - forgot the photos.

Tip: I added chunks of mango to my bowl and it gave my stir fry a really fresh and bright taste. I brought the leftover brown rice home and made a stir fry of leftover tri-tip (beef) chunks, onions, yellow squash, and some soy sauce. Remembering the mango, I added some cantaloupe chunks, which gave that same bright and fresh taste. Be bold! Add some fruit where you usually add only vegetables; not just in stir fry dishes, but salads, soups, etc. as well. Good place for your daily apples.

Thank You: To LInda, who brought me these sweet little teapots when she came to Hu Hot for lunch. I need one more table for fall, and I'm thinking Farmers Market. Wouldn't these be perfect? The apple is for perspective so you can see how tiny they are.

Before lunch, I dropped by Katie's. Didn't have time to go to card class, but she and Jeanne had their next two cards ready, so I wanted to get photos and give them the printouts for the next four cards. In alphabetical order, left to right, Jeanne, Katie, Patsy.

Sketch 71

Sketch 72

If you're a cardmaker and would like to try this, the link is HERE. There's a window to click on sketches 1-200 and another for 200 and above. We just completed Sketch 72, and the website is on Sketch 287. You're welcome to join their group, but we just follow at our own pace. We love seeing how one sketch can be interpreted so differently by the cardmakers. 

And we take many liberties. We probably couldn't qualify for awards on the website. Jeanne was legal here (the white piece could be any shape), Katie left off the middle strip between the flip-flops and the water, and my strawberry was much too large, because it was supposed to fit on the left. And in sketch 71, we all made standard 5-1/2" by 4-1/4" cards instead of square cards, which require extra postage. 

Using a prescribed layout truly helps with your creativity, and if you just don't know where to start, choose one and dig in. And if you need more than 287 layouts, go HERE. I've pinned over 2,000 on Pinterest.

Tablescapes: I have four tables for November, but need one more. November seems a little late for Farmers Market, so I'd have to do some shuffling. Here are the four I've finished.

Autumn Leaves

Notice the little leaf candles in front of the plate.They're a gift from my kids which I can't bear to light. I just keep them for decoration.

Yellow Brunch
I think this table is boring. I'm thinking of a redo with white placemats. Your comments, please.

Bountiful Harvest

Autumn's Gold and Orange

Jeanne gave me this beautiful trivet, and when I sent her a photo to show her I finally found the perfect table to use it, she said that she didn't remember giving it to me. Sometimes we "scatter" so much, we don't even remember doing it.

And yes, I grew these flowers. Even I (world's worst gardener), can raise marigolds and zinnias. They practically take care of themselves.

Taking Care of our Health: So how did you do this week? I was a very good girl, and ate everything I was supposed to eat. So - are you ready for Week 3? 

Eat a salad every day. It can be any kind, but preferably with a green leafy vegetable. This is not mandatory. You can eat fruit salad, potato salad, Jello salad, macaroni salad, bean salad, etc., and don't forget Cole slaw. The choices are endless - easy, peasy.

So everyday, eat apples in some form, foods high in magnesium LINK, and a salad. We can do this! We have to eat anyway; it might as well be something good for us.

Time for fun: I've been doing a lousy job of celebrating our national days. Maybe I can do better this week. Shhhh. I might have to fudge a little.

Monday is Cherry Turnover Day. 

Tuesday is Chop Suey Day.

Wednesday is Toasted Marshmallow Day. I think a sweet potato casserole with marshmallows on top should count, don't you?

Thursday  Happy South Carolina Day to our friends in The South.

It's also Matchmaker Day, which I believe I'll skip as I'm happily single.

And Diatomaceous Earth Day, which I'll skip but found very interesting. Click HERE.

Guess I'll just eat some trailmix.

Friday Lazy Mom's Day. Yes! I'm a mom, and I'm an expert at being lazy.

Saturday Tailgating or Blueberry Popsicles. I've never seen a blueberry popsicle, and I don't go to football games. Maybe a picnic instead?

Sunday Welsh Rarebit Day. How about a grilled cheese sandwich instead? It's close. Well, it is. 







Sunday, August 20, 2017

Week 87, 8-20-2017

Thoughts and Quotes: May you walk through the world and know its beauty all the days of your life.  Apache Blessing

For international viewers who don't know the name, the Apaches are a Native American tribe, known for their bravery.

Thank you: To Brandon at the library for the photos on my header. I wouldn't have figured this out in a million years. 

And speaking of libraries, our library tax bill passed, so we will now have our very own library here in Nixa. I've already started gathering things for the teas, as you will see later. No sense carting things back and forth between libraries, and besides, the two libraries might have a tea on the same day, and then what would we do?

I'm going to keep track of the expenses so you can see how inexpensively you can gather things for a tea at your library. The ladies love them, and you've never seen happier smiles than the ones on the little girls at mother-daughter teas. 

Tasting: My nephew broke his ankle and my brother (his father) is staying with him. I've been over a couple of times to have dinner. Saturday I took a pecan pie and realized that you might like to have the recipe handy on the pull downs above.

(Karo® syrup)

3 eggs
1 cup Karo® syrup
1 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 Tbs butter, melted
1-1/2 cups chopped pecans
9” pie crust

Heat oven to 350°.

Using a spoon or whisk, mix all filling ingredients except pecans.

Stir in pecans.

Pour into pie crust.

Bake 60-70 minutes or until center reaches 200° in center. If done, center will spring back when lightly touched.

Note: You can also use coarsely chopped English walnuts for a walnut pie.

And I needed a quick dessert to take to a friend's house, so I made this easy cake, origin unknown.


1 cake mix
1 12-oz can Sprite

Heat oven to 350°.

Mix Sprite with cake mix using a hand mixer. Beat on medium 2 minutes.

Pour batter into a Bundt pan sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.

Bake 20-25 minutes.

Cool completely.

Dust with powdered sugar, drizzle with glaze, or frost.

Note: If you frost, I  suggest using Pudding Frosting.

And some down-home tasting at Rosie Jo's. Bad girl!

Thrifting: Then across the street for some shopping. I found this beautiful butter dish for cooking club friend Mim, who just returned from a trip to Rome. $2

And this sweet little dish for cooking club friend Bev who loves Paris and has even celebrated Bastille Day while sitting on the lawn by the Eiffel Tower to watch the fireworks. She's a minimalist and might tell me "no", but maybe not as it's small. $1

I also found this cute couple - my favorite kind of ceramics; the kind you buy as "greenware", paint, and fire.$2 each.

Another lovely Asian lady to join the other two on the Asian table - see week 70, HERE and scroll down. $1

A Spanish senorita for an international table - $2

And things for the new library - dessert plates, $1 each.

Four water glasses - a bargain at 50 cents each.

No use for sherberts at the tea, so I'm keeping them - also 50 cents each.

The Pepper and Pals Report: Pepper continues to chase Stormy back out to the indoor patio if she enters the house; however, when he's in her territory, he loves her. The other day he pawed the side of the carrier to wake her. No luck, so he pawed the other side. Still sleeping, so he decided to join her. She continues to rearrange the patio and scatter her toys (and other things), so I tell her she's a brat cat. She won't eat until I pet her a few strokes.

I'm reporting this with tears on my cheeks. All five kittens have disappeared. Recently a kitty was poisoned where a friend lives in another city, so that was my first thought. But what kind of monster is evil enough to murder innocent little kittens? They only came on my outdoor patio and went under the fence to live in the hayfield behind us. I doubt that anyone even knew of them except my neighbor (who loved them), and readers of my blog. It's truly a mystery. BJ, the mother, had such a sad look on her face the first day she came alone. The next day she ate only a few bites, and she didn't show up for dinner last night or breakfast this morning. I'll keep you posted.

Taking Care of Our Health: How did you do with eating apples? I ate applesauce twice, drank apple juice once, and chopped them into my oatmeal or Cream of Wheat three times - love that.

And once I chopped them, two minutes on high in the microwave, a little sugar, topped with whipping cream and nutmeg, and Voila! dessert.

I recently saw a report about magnesium, which was really interesting. According to the report, a shortage of magnesium can cause the following:


Depression or Anxiety

Frequent Headaches

High Blood Pressure

Increased Sensitivity to Noise

Irregular Heartbeat


Low Bone Density

Low Energy

Twitching or Cramping of Legs

Type 2 Diabetes

Foods high in magnesium are:
Protein Sources

Edamame, Fish, Halibut, Salmon, Soybeans, Tofu

Fruits and Vegetables

Artichokes, Avocado, Bananas, Broccoli, Chard, Figs, Okra, Spinach, Raspberries, Strawberries, Watermelon


Buckwheat, Corn, Flax Seed, Millet, Oats, Quinoa, Wheat Germ, Wholewheat Bread


Black Turtle Beans, Kidney Beans, Peanuts, Peanut Butter, Pinto Beans

Seeds and Nuts

Almonds, Brazil Nuts, Pumpkin Seeds, Sunflower Seeds


Cashews, Dark Chocolate, Molasses, Peas (not specified if dried - legumes) or (fresh - vegetables)

I assume that halibut and salmon are higher sources than other fish, and that's why they were singled out.

So - this week's assignment is to eat one of the above foods each day, while continuing to eat apples every day.

Even if you don't have a magnesium deficiency, it can't hurt you to eat these healthful foods.

Tablescapes: The four October tablescapes are finished. We're getting there.

A Walk in the Autumn Woods

The snack set had soup in the cup, quiche and a small salad on the plate, tea in the cup and saucer, assorted muffins in the apple baskets, and spreads in the opaque apple dish.

Autumn Meadow
The funny part is that the name of this dish set is "Summer Meadow". Looked autumn to me.

Brown-Eyed Susans

The National Days: Some yummy days coming up this week. 

Monday: If you're not old enough to celebrate Senior Citizens Day, you can eat spumoni.

Tuesday: If you don't want to loose a tooth so you can celebrate National Tooth Fairy Day, you can eat a pecan torte.

Wednesday: It's Sponge Cake Day. I've never made one. Maybe this is the time.

Thursday: If you're not from Maryland, you can eat waffles or peach pie.

Friday: Put together a second-hand wardrobe or eat a banana split.

Saturday: Dog Day. If you don't have a dog, you can eat a cherry popsicle. It's also Women's Equality Day. I don't know, Ladies. Are we ready to give up being superior?

Sunday: Pots de creme Day. Love it!