Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Donkey Day and 7 Layer Bar Recipe

I will start with the recipe. That way you won't have to read about the Donkey Day if you don't want to. Here are the ingredients:

1 stick (4 oz.) butter (you can use salted or unsalted. I don't do margarine, so have no idea how it would work in this recipe.)

1-1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs (rather than buy the crumbs, I take whole graham crackers and put them in my handy dandy mini food processor. I think it's much cheaper that way.)

1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1 cup butterscotch chips

1 cup chopped nuts (walnuts or pecans)

1 can sweetened condensed milk

1-1/3 cups sweetened shredded coconut

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and put your stick of butter in a 13"x9" (or close to it) dish. If your butter is cold, slice it up into several sections (it will melt quicker that way). Doesn't take the butter long to melt (or burn) so keep an eye on it. Pour the graham cracker crumbs into the dish and spread them out evenly. Then you just layer the rest of the ingredients in the order listed above. Recipe says bake at 350 for 25 minutes. But check 'em at 20 minutes, okay?

A donkey day is a day spent just wandering around, zoned out on muscle relaxers and/or pain medication. Coherent enough to know there are many things I need to do, but not coherent enough to actually sit down and do them.

So, at some point in the early morning I moved wrong and woke up in extreme pain. Managed to go back to sleep for a bit, and when I opened my eyes there was a snow dog's face not even a foot from my face. I'm sure anyone who has raised a child can relate to waking up to a face just staring at you. A human face is different though. Snow dogs bear an eerie resemblance to wolves. Then I think about the woman in France who was the recipient of the world's first face transplant. Her dog bit her face off. It makes me pause.

Whatever I did in my sleep carried over into the day, and I got nothing done. Oh, almost forgot to say....I fell down! Weebles wobble but they don't fall down, but I fell down. Tried to put both legs into one pant leg and down I went. I did manage to spread the impact out over both arms, which is a good thing.

I am already behind on orders. These days eBay buyers expect next day shipping. But my items are hand made after purchase, and the process takes 2-3 days (assuming there are no DD's in between). I am rated in four categories: communication, item as described, shipping time and shipping charges. In a three month period I am allowed 2 low marks (low being 1 star or 2 stars) in each category. Shipping time is always where I get marked down by buyers. If 3 people, out of about 500 people/sales, in a 90 day period say I was slow to ship, I lose my top rated seller status. That seems a bit excessive, but perhaps I'm over-reacting.

Time to go email some people, and apologize for shipping late....

Monday, November 29, 2010

Seven (Perfect) Layer Bars

I'm sure everyone is familiar with this recipe. My family loves these bars. But I only seem to make them at holiday time. I make mine with pecans. Probably just as well I don't make them more often, as I can still fit in an airplane seat and would like to keep it that way. Not that I fit comfortably, but I do fit.

We polished off a batch of these yummy bars over the weekend, and the oven is heating up for the next batch as I type. It's of great importance to me that my son have memories of his mother baking. Not sure why, but it is :).

Thursday, November 25, 2010

* Happy Thanksgiving *

It is 35 degrees here in Washington State, and soon we will be heading over to my former husband's home to share the meal with him and his wife and their three doggies. A bit unusual yes, but we all get along and it's wonderful for my son to see parents and stepparents on good terms.

I am thankful for many things. First and foremost is my salvation, and the never ending love of my Father in heaven. I am thankful for my family - for a husband who truly cherishes me, a son who honors me and is growing up to be such a fine young man, and yes, for our two fur babies who make us laugh every day and love us, no matter what. I am thankful for my mother, who lives 1000 miles away, and for my sister and nephew.

I am going to Thanksgiving dinner with gray roots, because there ain't no way my left arm is going anywhere close to above my neck to be able to color my hair. That's okay, nothing to get upset over. I am thankful I'm still here!

I hope you have a wonderful day ~ God Bless!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Got Life Insurance?

I will preface this post by saying I am an opinionated person. Having said that, here is what I was thinking about earlier tonight.

There is a woman who posts videos on You Tube. She and her husband have quite a few children. Her husband passed away suddenly last summer. Prior to her husband's death this lady made videos showing things she had purchased (hauls) and also RAKS (random acts of kindness gifts) sent to her from others. I should also tell you that she was very generous and sent RAKS to many people.

In the span of only a couple weeks, her videos went from showing all the things she had purchased, to videos offering her craft supplies for sale (of course at a tremendous loss). She pointed out they had been a one income family, and now without her husband, she and her kids were in serious trouble.

To put it bluntly, life insurance isn't cheap. But neither are all the products Tim Holtz sells. If some of that craft money had been spent elsewhere, i.e., life insurance, things would be different right now. I cannot fathom the loss of a spouse, nor am I trying to take anything away from her tragedy. I'm just asking you to think about it, especially if you have children at home.

Both my husband and I have life insurance policies. We give up a few extras, a few dinners out, a few fancy vacations in exchange for peace of mind and the knowledge that our kids would be taken care of. It's too late for the lady I have written about. If someone reads this and it makes a positive impact on them, I will have accomplished my goal.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Random Stuff and an Albertsons Haul

So...I got home from grocery shopping about 45 minutes ago. Even though I'm more than tired, I need to defrag my brain before I go to bed. The big news here is we've had some snow, and they expect snow overnight. Snow is no big deal, but ice scares me. I did a couple Tonya Harding spins in the Albertsons parking lot. As John Pinette says, "Let's not visualize, let's just move on shall we?"

Our trip to Nevada was cancelled. We realized we could not make that drive in two days, and we certainly did not have enough time to take three days coming and going. Why that thought didn't occur to anyone earlier, is beyond me. Now the plan is to meet up with Inv. Linton and his lovely wife at the Grand Canyon next summer. Judging from the storms all around us, we probably would have cancelled at the last minute anyway. Towing in snow is not fun; just ask my husband.

I decided I want to start doing my own You Tube videos after the first of the year. I will talk more about that in a future post. I have been addicted to watching the videos of a small group of ladies who make the most beautiful things with paper.

I don't know if food can be considered a "haul," but that's what I'm calling this. I know blogs are nicer when pictures accompany posts, but that isn't happening tonight. I'm going to list everything I bought, and my total out of pocket expense. I should mention that I don't shop like many people do. I shop the sales and to stock up. I will buy six boxes of cereal, even if I have six boxes at home, if I can get it for $.49 a box. Plus we donate food to church and our local homeless shelter. I've been very lazy with my coupon shopping lately. Wonder if that has anything to do with watching videos and creating things? Nah...

I bought:

1 pkg Mission tortilla chips
1 pkg Nestle cookie dough
2 32-oz bottles Coffee-Mate creamer
1 box Hartz Crunch & Clean dog treats
2 boxes Keebler Club crackers
1 box Ritz crackers
1 box Wheat Thins crackers
1 can Planters cashew pieces
2 boxes Lucky Charms
1 box Trix
1 box Cocoa Puffs
1 jar Ragu Alfredo sauce
2 boxes Stove Top stuffing
1 pkg Franz Hawaiian rolls
1 pkg Idahoan potatoes
2 boxes Barilla spaghetti
1 box Barilla linguine
1 bag Cheetos
1 bag Fritos
1 loaf Granny's white bread
4 12-pks Pepsi products
4 12-pks Coke products
1 pkg Pillsbury pie crusts
1 gallon milk
1 16-oz bottle Darigold strawberry milk
1 pkg Swiss cheese
1 19 lb. turkey
1 10 lb. bag potatoes
1 bag salad
1 bunch celery
1 bunch green onions
1 pkg broccoli & cauliflower mix....and
1 Marie Callender's coconut cream pie (MAJOR impulse buy)


I cut a piece from the frozen pie (the box said I could) and supposedly it should be thawed by now. It isn't anywhere near thawed. I'm fixin' to take my heat gun to it.

Bedtime :)

Friday, November 5, 2010

....rest of the Halloween Mini

Okey dokey (okie dokie?), took these pics in the house, at night. Not exactly optimal conditions. 90% of this book was created with the Anna Griffin Halloween collection papers and embellishments. There's a little Martha, a little Recollections, some graphics purchased on Etsy, and a double decker metallic pumpkin that I scavenged from a Halloween cupcake a few years back.

The skull has a lot of UTEE on him. Wonderful texture!

When I saw these cool stickers (Martha Stewart) they had Sara's name on them. Especially "sweet tooth" as she uses that expression a lot.

I used yellow Stickles for the pumpkins' eyes, nose and mouth.

When you "open" the pumpkin flap, you have a place for three photos. This is really high tech for me.....LOL. I hope to learn a lot more techniques :).

Used a coaster to create the spider's house.

I've had that big web-looking jewelry piece for a long, long time. With the big orange stone in the center, it's perfect for this page.

MAJOR wimp-out on this page!! Not functional at all.

Last page has a little photo mat and card which opens up for pictures or journaling.