Thursday, July 29, 2010

My Happy Entryway!

   This is our back entry  

Don't know if I ever said it here, but I am a hairdresser. I have always been a stay-at-home-mom. But did hair from our home. That allowed me to be home, be flexible & work around the boys, youth ministry & husband's business travel.
So when we built our home, we put the shop at the back entry, where customers don't have to go near the places that we live.  So when they come in, this is what they see.... The 1st pic is from the kitchen door, looking towards the shop door.
And right now, there is contest at a shop in our town, for a $100 gift cert. asking to see "How we do Roeda"
So since I was taking pics for that, I thought that I would show a little of my "Roeda"
Carol Roeda is a fabulous artist from Grand rapids Michigan, you may have even seen her work.
You can visit her Here
The pieces that I have of her here, are all painted metal & she uses magnets to embellish.
I change out with the seasons... & her stuff is a little pricey, but most of these things have been gifts.

This is a pic of a mirror that hangs in the hallway

The flowers & embellishments that you see are all magnetic, & I switch them all out during different seasons.
This fabulous topiary stands next to my kitchen door. It was a Christmas gift from my Husband a long time ago. When I 1st got it, I was going to use outdoors, by the back door, but with Michigan winters, I decided to leave it here. I embellished with red berries, bought new in pkg. with a price tag of $29, but I only paid $1. at Salvation Army... SCORE  At Christmas I just add a big old bow to cover the bird : )

This piece "In Everything give thanks" hangs on the wall across from the mirror.
Little ceramic verse ..."His mercies are new every morning"
(bought recently at a Young Life camp store :)

Pretty much everything else is a thrift store find.
The little table here was $8, & is soon to be painted. The wooden church, I found recently at GW for $2. (who would ever give that away?? ) It is a favorite of mine.
Little table lamp, $1.00

The little blue hanger near the door, .50 at GW The round table in the corner, $2. GW, in bad shape, but just spray painted black. The pics & mirrors, GW. The red metal sconces ARC in Denver, $1. each.
Clock & candle holder thrift store finds, with tassel I made myself.
This door leads to the bathroom used by clients & the black metal bucket was a find at my favorite Discount store in Manistee Mi.  was $1.00 & I just painted it black. The cherry picture frame was a gift & has a pic of a Christmas card that our family did a few yrs. ago, when the boys were all in college.... before the daughter-in-laws came along.   Don't know if you can see it well, but we own an orange VW camper van, bought off Ebay, by hubby & the boys, as a lark.....I had them put a tree on top, as if we had been out in the woods, chopping our own tree, & all holding the new puppies...
& then wrote a funny little poem about our "FFF"   Forced Family Fun...

I'll just finish with a Carol Roeda piece that I have on the mantle in the living room....
(And really the rest of my house is not this cluttered .... I just love the whimsy in the back hall & can't seem to stop myself from adding more : )

Friday, July 23, 2010

The SWEET Taste of Summer at our place

  I was just over at BJ's @ "Sweet Nothings" 
 Just looking at her posts always makes me hungry. She has this incredible gift of displaying, that makes your mouth just water... Oh that girl can cook!!
And she has a GREAT give-away going on.... 
   Check out her sweet Blog  Here

Well, in my comment to her, I stated "that I can't cook for beans" ... so true, I don't know how, don't like to, don't want to really try & learn.... When I had 3 teen boys in the house I HAD to cook... but it was usually 5:00 & I would say to myself, "What can I do with a lb. of frozen hamburger"  No one complained...( not that I remember :)  SOoooo  Spaghetti, tacos....
      My line was always,  "If I sew all day, I have a new outfit, If I cook all day all I have is dirty dishes"  

   On the weekends up north, hubby does all the cooking.... He LOVES it. (seriously ) we have HUGE meals.... Everything that you could possibly have on a breakfast table, he provides...something on the grill at night...
   BUT every weekend we go, I make the candy..... I know my sweets  : ) 
It started yrs. ago when I brought my candy to a potluck....Now I can't even think about going without bringing some.... seriously folks will ride by on their boats & yell, "Did you bring candy?"

  So I thought I would share my super easy recipes.....

      Here is what I use............       My crock pot candy
 In your crock pot on low
    - Put in 1 can of salted, dry roasted peanuts
    - 1 can un- unsalted, dry roasted peanuts
    - 1  12 oz. pkg. choc. chips
    - 1 12 oz.  pkg. white  choc. chips
    - 1 20 oz. brick of choc. candy quik ( or something similar like Bark ) broken up into the squares.
 Do not stir, just leave it as you throw it in peanuts on the bottom.  Leave on low for 1 hr.      
 Then stir well, un plug  & drop on to parchment paper  
  This recipe usually makes for me, about 75 - 85 nice sz. candies.... 
  The easiest, BEST chocolate covered peanuts you will ever make

  Then if I have time, I will make my sought - after caramel corn
       Here is the recipe I use.... I'll add my tweaking at the end.

  Caramel corn
      -  4 qt. popped corn
      -  1 cup brown sugar
      -  1 stick maragarine
      -  1/4 Cup white syrup
      -  1/2 teas. salt
      -  1 teas. vanilla
Boil together until thoroughly dissolved.  Remove from heat & add 
      -  1 teas. soda
Pour over corn - mix together. Bake 1 hr. @ 250   Stir every 15 min.
  The recipe I use is from an old Church recipe book & it says to put on cookie sheets, but I have been doing this for yrs. & I always use my Grandmothers old, HUGE turkey pan ( see pics)
  by stirring every 15 min. or so, it turns out better than good : )

    Now for the IMPORTANT tweaking..... I always make 1 1/2  - 2  times the recipe....
 I use REAL BUTTER   (important ) not margarine
 & then a few yrs. ago, I was making it & found that my popcorn was not popping all that big, so I decided to try microwave popcorn..... I used "Butter"    microwave popcorn
   OH MY !!!  Does that ever make the difference
     I usually use the whole 6 pkgs. in the box
Of course we are not talking diet food here..... but for a treat every once in a while....
   It is Fabulous!!!!
       Try them sometime, you are guaranteed to LOVE it.... If not, just send the leftovers over here & I will bring them to the neighbors, up north. 

Monday, July 19, 2010

"Bear" with me

    We had some excitement this weekend.
 We own 3 different pieces of property in Northern Michigan. They are all a few miles apart, & as we were driving down some back roads between, we hit a bear with the car.  He/she just ran out of the woods & right into us.  It was HUGE!  & scared the living daylights out of me.
  He ran back into the weeds & we watched him go, tracking where he went.  
Now we hit him hard, & hubby was pretty sure that he had to be hurt, so not wanting to go into the woods, after an angry bear, we went back to our place & waited a bit.
 Now my husband is a big hunter & he WANTED that bear for a rug in front of the fireplace. 
   So, waiting a little more & making a few calls, hubby decided it was "safe" to go back & look :) 
  So.... here is the picture... it is 90 degrees & hubby is walking thru the swamp in big ole boots & hunting gear, armed with a knife, "just in case" he tells me.... my sister & I are in the van watching... we have shorts & flip flops on.... with nothing at all to go after a bear with. You can just imagine the scenarios that we came up with.... the "what if's"
  But after a little bit he comes back with nothing ( "Yay", I say under my breath ) Hubby doesn't have a scratch on him.... ( the "what if's" in my head ) & the last thing I want is a dead bear on the floor......
   The DNR said that they would do some looking, but it is a pretty big area.....
I've never seen one that close before, it ran right into my side of the car....
 We have a Christmas tree farm not far from there & Hubby & the boys have seen the mother & cubs there, before..... & I have heard the stories...
     I'm hoping that he/she was just stunned & will be just fine.