Monday, June 30, 2008

Tiny Blessings

The past week or so has been challenging for myself as well as my little family. My husband has started working odd hours and its taking its toll. I don't think I've ever really appreciated what single moms have to go through until I was in their shoes to an extent. Today was an especially trying day. CJ is still cutting 3 teeth and I didn't get much sleep last night. So we were both pretty cranky today. CJ finally settled down for a nap today and I took a breather. I crocheted, I swept the kitchen and I folded a load of clothes. And then I sat down at the computer to chat with a friend still feeling stressed. And then came a knock at my door. I open it to find my brother standing there with a bouquet of beautiful flowers from my mom, him and my sister. I don't know how, motherly intuiton I guess, but my mom always knows when I need a pick me up. Now if I could only learn to take advantage of her willingness to babysit. lol

Have a wonderful night,
Mrs B

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Busy weekend

Weekends are always super busy around here, full of housework, grocery shopping and working at the flea market on saturdays. Add to that my stepdad's birthday on Thursday and a toddler who is cutting 3 molars there hasn't been alot of time for blogging this week.
Since having CJ I have been using Purex Free and Clear on our clothes. And while it gets our clothes clean, I no longer have a nice, fresh, clean smell to my clothes. I had no desire to go back to scented laundry detergents because of CJ's sensitive skin, but I needed my clothes to smell good. So I took my trusty bottle of Sweet Orange Essential Oil and added 1/4 tsp to my washing machine with the detergent. My clothes have never smelt better. And it works as a air freshener. My laundry area/entry way smells citrus-y fresh as soon as I open the washer.

Another thing I've started doing differently to my laundry is using wool dryer balls. You can buy PVC dryer balls at walmart or wool dryer balls on many Hyena Cart stores. But I found directions on how to make your own and they are working great! I try to only use my dryer for my smaller things, like CJ's clothes and wash cloths/dishrags/etc that won't fit on the line or drying rack. And with these dryer balls my clothes dry so much faster! Some people say it has cut their drying time in half. I haven't found it to be half yet, as I have an older dryer, but it has at least cut the drying time down by 1/4.

Do any of my readers have any other laundry tips?

Have a nice weekend,
Mrs B

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

When life gives you lemons.....

Or should I say thousands of envelopes, you make lemonade. Last night I received a huge box of polymailers on my doorstep. There is a couple thousand mailers and 800 sheets of labels. They need to be counted out by hand and sorted for a Co-Op I hosted on a forum I help run. So instead of working on my craft room today I'll be doing that.
Yesterday was quite productive yesterday on my craft room cleanup. I got the table cleared off and the gift "closet" cleaned out.
I have a new recipe to try tonight for supper.

Honey and Herb Pork Chops
4 medium pork chops
3 tablespoons honey
3 tablespoons chopped marjoram
3 tablespoons chopped thyme
salt and black pepper to taste
juice of 1/2 lemon

Serves 2-4

Warm honey slightly in the microwave and brush the chops on each side. Mix the chopped herbs and coat the chops with them evenly. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and drizzle with the lemon juice. Grill or broil chops for 5 minutes on each side, turn and broil another 5 to 10 minutes on each side, depending on the thickness, further away from the heat. Serve immediately.

Time to get CJ ready for the day! He is wearing his favorite shirt and shoes from Jennifer at Bumble Bear Children's Wear. Jennifer hand paints shirts, shoes, hats, anything you want painted. We have 2 shirts, a pair of shoes and hat so far. With 3 mroe shirts and a pair of shoes on the way. Heres the items we have so far.
The 18 wheeler shirt was a custom she did for me from a picture I sent her. And the zoo set was CJ's outfit for his first birthday party. And lastly, the shorts were knitted by Heather at Fairy Crafty. They both do awesome work.

This shirt she did for a collab hosted on my HC (its still available btw)

Enjoy your day!
~Mrs B

Monday, June 23, 2008


Its Monday! Beginning of a new week. I have big plans for this week. I have closed my Hyena Cart down for the summer. I'm redoing my look, and working on my product line. I also want to take some time to clean up our craft room/spare bedroom/office/junk room and get it more organized. So this week is phase one.

#1) Clean off my kitchen table and move all the supplies I have on there back to the craft room

#2) move my sewing machine and sewing notions out and set it up on the table so I can sew this week.

#3) go through my gift "closet" (aka a huge laundry basket) and pull out things I don't want to keep and make a list of the things I do have

#4) start going through the yard sale items I've stashed away in there and put them in the car to take to the flea market

I have some sewing projects to do this week as well. I am making camera straps for my sister's camera. And a suprise for my mom.

OK I'm off to pick up the living room, vacuum and then crochet alittle while CJ plays with his blocks.

~Mrs B

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Spicy Crispy Chicken

This recipe is on my list of things to make so I wanted to share it with my readers as well.

Spicy Crispy Chicken

2 c. buttermilk
1 T. Tobasco sauce
Boneless Chicken Breasts cut into strips or large chunks
2 c. crushed spicy tortilla chips, like Doritos
1 tsp. ground chipotle chile powder

Heat oven to 350F. In resealable plastic bag, combine first 2 ingredients; add chicken. (I mixed the sauce in bowl, then poured that over a baking dish the chicken were in. Why waste a Zip-loc?) Chill 2 hours, turning once.

In bowl, combine remaining ingredients. Coat chicken in chip-chipotle mixture.

Place chicken on baking sheet. Bake 1 hour and 15 minutes., or until thermometer inserted into meat, not touching bone, reads 170F.

~Mrs B

Friday, June 20, 2008

Taco Style Lentils & Rice

One of my closest friends, Jillian, is a vegetarian. And she has inspired me to try to more vegetarian recipes. This is one that is on my list to try. It calls for Beef Bouillion but I'm sure she can give us an alternative. **Update: Jillian said use vegetable bouillion**

Taco Style Lentils & Rice

3/4 cup dry lentils
3/4 cup brown rice
4 cups tap water
4 beef bouillon cubes
2 teaspoons chili powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

In a 2-quart saucepan bring the water to a boil. As the water is heating, add the lentils, rice, bouillon, chili powder, cumin, onion powder, and garlic powder. Bring the whole thing to a nice fat boil. Reduce the heat to low. Place a lid on the lentils and allow the mixture to simmer for about 45 to 50 minutes. The water should be mostly absorbed. You may serve this as it, topped with a little cheddar cheese if desired. Or you can use it to fill burritos or tacos instead. Both ways are very tasty. This is one of Tommy's favorite foods in the whole wide world.

If you have never tried lentils and are looking for a way to make them acceptable to the kids, this one is a good bet. Our favorite way to eat it is as a taco filling. If you are having a busy day and don't have time to cook this on the stove, it can cook in the crock pot on low for about 6 to 8 hours instead. I've never cooked it on high, so I'm not sure how quickly it would cook that way. I suspect about 3 hours would be enough.
*Recipe from Hillbilly Housewife

I'm off to hang a load of clothes on the drying rack and get another load started. And then I'm going to start on a pair of wool shorties for my CJ in the John Deere colorway by Candy Pants Yarns. Trish does beautiful hand dyed wool and has never disappointed me with the creativity she shows in her dying. She also does custom colorways. Not to mention her customer service is top notch.

~Mrs B

Thursday, June 19, 2008


One of my husband's favorite things is Tilapia. I don't mind it so much either because it is easy to prepare and it doesn't take long to cook. Plus I can usually get a package of Tilapia for under $4 and get 2 meals from it (4-5 pieces of tilapia in each bag)
I bought a package of Tilapia yesterday so I thought I would share one of our favorite recipes.

Southwest Style Tilapia

3/4 lb tilapia filets (2-3 pieces)
1/4c parmesan cheese, shredded
1/8c yellow cornmeal
1TBS flour
1/2tea paprika
1/4tsp black pepper
olive oil

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Combine dry ingredients in a dish.
Bread fish in dry ingredients.
Coat bottom of baking dish with olive oil and place fish in it.
Sprinkle the remaining dry ingredients over fish.
Bake for 15-20 minutes or until done.

I like to serve this with cornbread and stewed potatoes.

~Mrs B

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Middle of the week drag

Its wednesday. That day in the middle of the week that seems so far away from the weekend and yet so close sometimes its painful. Today is errands day as well. The post office, the grocery store, the bank, etc etc. I always have a hard time getting motivated on Wednesdays, but especially when I have to go to town.
Last night I relaxed with a cup of Harvest Moon Chai Tea from Lisa at Healing Pixie. (BFS has a mango collab going on with Healing Pixie right now as well!) It was so yummy and I really enoyed having a few minutes at the end of the day to relax and wind down for bed.

OK I'm off to get ready for the day. I will leave you with a picture today.

~Mrs B

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

No Bake Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

This is one of my favorite recipes so I thought I would repost it.

These cookies are soooo yummy!! And because of the oats, they are wonderful for nursing moms as well.

2 cup sugar
1/2c milk
1/2c cocoa
one stick of butter
1/2c Peanut butter
1 tsp vanilla
3 cups of oats

Put the first four ingredients in a pot, bring to a boil add the pb and vanilla, let boil one minute. Remove from the heat and stir in the oats. Spoon onto a cookie sheet adn let cool (or eat hot out of bowl if you are impatient like me ) I know that you can make them without PB but would have to tweak it. I usually use less sugar ( 1 cup or so) and sub some of the butter for coconut oil but not all or it is too overpowering. I have tried all sorts of different ratios just to find what I like and to try and reduce the sugar. You can also sub some butter for extra PB if you want. If you like them soft just leave them out or put them in the fridge to make them a bit harder! I like that I can get all of the ingredients oganic and they are so fast to make so if I have a sweet craving I don't have to give in to the temptation of peanut M&M's

*MrsB's Notes: I added a dash of cinnamon and spread it out in a pan to make bar cookies instead of dropping them on the pan.

~Mrs B

Ranch Dressing recipe

My wonderful sister is having her graduation party this weekend. Part of my duties is to make a vegetable tray. Normally I purchase a bottle of Hidden Valley ranch for my veggie trays. But this time I decided to go homemade. So I went off in search of the perfect Ranch dressing recipe. The first place I went to was my favorite cooking blog, The Pioneer Woman and of course I found one right away.

I thought I would share so everyone could enjoy it with me.

Pioneer Woman’s Homemade Ranch Dressing
1 to 2 cloves garlic
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt (use less table salt)
1 cup mayonnaise (Hellman’s or Best Foods preferred)
1/2 cup sour cream
1/4 to 1/2 cup buttermilk or regular milk, to taste
1/4 cup chopped flat leaf parsley
1 to 2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
1 to 2 teaspoons chopped fresh dill, more if desired
Optional ingredients:
white vinegar
worcestershire sauce
cayenne pepper
fresh oregano
black pepper

Directions: With a fork, make a paste with garlic and salt. Mix all other ingredients, adding optional ingredients as you wish, tasting frequently and adjusting seasonings as needed. Chill for a couple of hours before serving, thin with milk or buttermilk if desired.

~Mrs B

Monday, June 16, 2008

Show and Tell

The long awaited pictures from the Air Show and Atlantic Beach are finally up!

I also just finished a pair of wool shorties for a dear friend of mine. The wool is hand-dyed by Diane of Sweet Knitted Bottoms in the Bamboo Dreams colorway.

~Mrs B

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Homemade Baked Beans recipe

Thanks to my friend Debi for this delish Baked Beans recipe.


2 tbsp butter/margarine
1/2 med onion, chopped
1/3 c bell pepper
1 can of pork and beans
1/2 tsp liquid smoke
4 tbsp ketchup
1/2 tsp dry mustard
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/2 tsp worcestershire sauce

Preheat oven to 350. In med saucepan, melt butter. add onion and bell pepper and saute until tender. In large bwl mix beans, liquid smoke, ketchup, mustard, sugar and worcestershire sauce. Add in onion and bell pepper.

Pour into casserole dish and bake uncovered 25-30 min.



Sunday, June 8, 2008

Air Show and the beach

This weekend we took alittle trip as a family.

Friday we got to the Air Show about 4:30, got to park right at the gate which was really nice. It was SO hot! CJ had fun looking at the big planes and eatting frozen lemonade. he LOVED watching the planes fly and only got scared maybe once. Then when it got dark all the planes had flares and stuff attached to them and he really enjoyed watching the lights and the fireworks.

Saturday we opted to skip the Air Show since it was way too hot to take CJ again. We got up and went out for breakfast and then went to a bunch of little shops and walked around a bit. CJ got a hermit crab from one of the shops. After his nap we rode out to the Fort Macon State Park and spent a few minutes on the beach. He played in the sand for awhile but then got tired and hot so we left. It was unusually hot this year so we didn't get to enjoy everything like I wanted. :( We left Atlantic Beach around 3:30-4 and headed back inland. We stopped for dinner about an hour from home and then took CJ to a great little ice cream shop.

All in all it was a great weekend.

I'll post some pictures later! :)


Friday, June 6, 2008

Celebrating 2 years!

Two years ago on June 5th, 2006 I started my very first blog. Its been full of ups and downs and sometimes I've posted more than others. And I'll be admit here lately none at all. You never realize how busy life can get until you have a child and blogging has become something that I just can't find the time for most days with my home business and co-owning a mommy forum.

I'll be back soon though!