Sunday, October 30, 2011

Saturday Summary Week in Review (10/29)

I started the Saturday Summary as a way to sum up my week in a short list because lets face it - sometimes life just gets in the way of our good intentions of writing frequent, interesting and informative blog posts!  I know it's a Saturday Summary and today is Sunday  which demonstrates my point that despite my good intentions I haven't been able to post for a couple of days!

This has been one of those weeks where I know I was busy, but when I try to reflect on what happened during the week my mind is drawing a blank!  If the state of my house is any testimony of how busy I was then I must have been EXTREMELY Busy, since the house is a grade A Disaster!  I know that housework is definitely on the top of my need to do list today!  Without further ado, let me try to sum up my week!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Wordless Wednesday - My Retro Apron!

Retro Apron I decided to make (with a couple of modifications)

My Blog Anniversary is Just Around the Corner!

I just realized that I have a one year blog anniversary coming up on November 4th!  Time flies so fast, I can hardly believe it has been a year already......I remember starting out and having no clue what I was doing in the blogging world.

One of the first things I did was join in a meme and didn't do it right.  The host sent me a nasty email and I responded back letting her know that I was new to blogging and didn't know the "rules" of these kinds of things.  I still remember receiving that email and it is a good reminder of how not to treat your followers or people who comment.  I hope that host learned to never assume anything and there might be a story behind someone's actions.  If I had not already been such a strong person already that email that I received might have killed any desire I had to continue in the blogging world.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Vintage Cast Iron...

I love vintage and antique items and every time I see something from the past I always wonder what it's story is - who has held this piece, worked with it and used it on a day to day basis.  I was in "lookie-lou" heaven this past weekend while we were at the pumpkin patch!  Everywhere I looked there were vintage pieces that fired up my imagination, not to mention envy!  Just look at all of this cast iron cookware and wonderful wood burning stove!
I like the big galvanized tubs with flowers - I think I would have put some more in the milk jugs!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Pumpkin Patch ~ Signs, Signs and More Signs!

We (my youngest daughter and I) took a trip to the Pumpkin Patch yesterday and although it was a typical Pacific Northwest rainy day, I did manage to snap lots of photos!  My day job is working for a sign company, so of course seeing all of the creative signage was a special treat!  I thought I would share with you what I found.  Please dis-regard any of the dates shown in the pictures - I am not a "techie" and I had the batteries out of the camera and the date re-set itself!
This pole had license plates from all states with the "One Nation Under God" at the top!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Saturday Summary - Week in Review (10/22)

Sometimes life gets in the way of trying to write new blog posts so I decided to do a weekly feature every Saturday that sums up my week in a list of 7 highlights!  Someday maybe I can turn this into a Blog Hop if there are enough other Bloggers interested in joining - just let me know Via Email if this is something you might want to participate in - I think that there would have to be two other blog hosts besides myself to make it work!  Without further ado, here is my Saturday Summary:
1.  I had a Country Gourmet open house this past Sunday at my parents church - it was nice having it there instead of my house because it gave me lots of room to spread out and set up lots of products to sample as well as display a lot of our product!  I had a lot of fun and so did all of the guests - of course it helped that I gave away FREEBIES!  I think almost everyone went home with something.

2.  I finished and drew the winner (on Sunday) for the My Memories giveaway that I was hosting - not a huge number of entries, but it was still fun to host - plus I got the Software for FREE in exchange for hosting the Giveaway!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Flirty Aprons - Flash 50% Off This Weekend Only!

This weekend only Flirty Aprons is offering a 50% off "FLASH" Sale on three of it's select aprons!

Click on the Image or Link to go directly to this SALE, use COUPON CODE: flashweekend
Hurry, this deal won't last long - it expires on 10/23/11

By entering your coupon code (flashweekend) your shopping cart will be adjusted to 50% off the regular price! 

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

How to Set a Table

I was searching my recipe box so that I could post a recipe this morning, but I ran across a photocopied page out of a high school text book - page 44 to be exact.  I am not sure what text book this was from but I have been packing it around for some 30 odd years as the "proper" way to set a table.  I took quite a few "home economics" classes while I was in high school (it was an easy A grade).

I am of the firm belief that as long as you have the basics in place there is quite a bit of "wiggle room" when setting a table.  I always focus first on function and then on what looks good.  I consider the basics to be the plate in the center, knife to the right (sharp side facing the plate), spoon(s) to the right of the knife and the fork(s) on the left of the plate.  The drinking cup should be just above the knife.  Only put out the pieces that you will be using during the meal - for instance if you are not serving soup you will not need a soup spoon or soup bowl.  The silverware that you will be using first goes the farthest away from the plate (soup spoons and salad forks).

Image Key:
1.  Salad Plate
2.  Napkin
3.  Forks
4.  Butter plate and spreader
5.  Dinner Plate
6.  Glass
7.  Knife
8.  Spoons
9.  Cup and Saucer
    Tips on Table Settings:
    • Arrange the place mats about one inch from the edge of the table.
    • Place china and silver about one inch from the edge of the table.
    You don't need to have a lot of money to set a beautiful table, look for items around your house that you can create a table-scape theme from!  Holiday centerpieces can be made by filling a fancy glass bowl with seasonal items - like fruit, pumpkins and gourds or even glass Christmas ornaments or glass beads.  You can also check your local dollar store for items to supplement your table.
    My Valentine's Day Table - set up for the whole family.  Notice
    that I put the forks and napkin the wrong side - oops!  This was
    just a quick table set up so we would have something fun and special
    for Valentine's Day !

    Good luck and have fun with your tablescapes!


    Monday, October 17, 2011

    Sunday, October 16, 2011

    Flirty Aprons!

    Most of you know that my Country Gourmet Home Business is gourmet foods and food mixes......I love food and all things associated with food!  I am happy to announce a new affiliate - Flirty Aprons!  I have been searching high and low for the "just right" apron both for business and a different one to use at home!  I even went so far as to purchase material and I made my own!  It used to be (in the Olden Days when I was still in my teens) less expensive to make something yourself than to buy ready made......not so any more.

    I spent a small fortune (the dollar amount which will never be listed so hubby won't find out) purchasing material, pattern, thread, trims, buttons etc.  After I walked out of the fabric store I realized I could probably purchase 3 aprons at the price I had just paid for material.  Thus began the search or quest for cute and sassy aprons!  I search high and I searched low - I found out that there are many small work at home business out there that make aprons and they are priced appropriately as a "home-made item" but not enough variety and price was still a bit high!

    I recently stumbled across "Flirty Aprons" (now my newest affiliate) and they had exactly what I was looking for at prices I could afford!  My apron quest is over, now my apron collection has started!
    I invite you to take a look at what they have to offer!
    Click on the Image to See Flirty Apron's Selections!


    Friday, October 14, 2011

    Happy Birthday to Me - You Might Win!

    Update: Giveaway is closed, congratulations to Kim Croisant - you won the contest!
    Today is my Birthday (October 14th) and although I like getting presents - I love to give them even more!  To celebrate my Birthday I am going to do a simple giveaway - no complex rules and no having to follow me on various places!   

    All you have to do to enter is comment on this post!

    Since my birthday only lasts one day so will my giveaway! I will use to choose the Winner early Saturday morning! The contest is only open to U.S. Residents (sorry, I don't want to pay a fortune on shipping).

    I am giving away one Country Gourmet Home Mix from our New Fall Slow Cooker Mix Line!
    The Mix is Flavorful Pot Roast

    Our flavorful pot roast is a perfect way to start the day! Add your frozen roast and seasonings to your crock pot and slow cook for a fall apart sensation! Just add water (and the roast of course), you can also add mini new potatoes and/or carrots for a complete dish. Retail Value: $4.50

    Hurry and Enter, the contest ends tomorrow (October 15th) at 6am Pacific Time!

    Linking up With:


    Thursday, October 13, 2011

    CommentLuv on My Blog Had to go Bye-Bye!

    Blogger just doesn't like having CommentLuv on it, so I had to do away with it and go back standard Blogger Comment forms.  If you entered one of my contests by leaving a comment, don't worry it will still count (I have a copy of all CommentLuv comments).  Sorry for any confusion this may have caused!

    Thumbprint Cookies

    These are one of my family favorites and don't last very long at our house!

    Thumbprint Cookies Recipe

    1/2 Cup Shortening (half margarine if desired)
    1/4 Cup Brown Sugar (lightly packed)
    1 egg yolk
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla
    1 Cup Flour
    1/4 teaspoon salt
    Chopped Walnuts and egg white.

    Cream shortening an sugar.  Add egg yolk and beat well.  Ad vanilla and mix well.  Sift flour and salt together and add gradually to creamed mixture, mixing well.

    Roll dough into 1 inch balls.  Dip each ball into lightly beaten egg whites, then roll in chopped nuts.  Place 1 inch apart on un-greased cookie sheet.

    Bake at 375 degrees for 5 minutes then remove from oven and quickly press thumb in center of each cookie.   Return to oven for an additional 8 minutes.  Cool baked cookies completely - then fill indention with jam or whatever filling you choose!

    Tuesday, October 11, 2011

    I Won, I Won, I Won, Yipee!

    This week is my birthday week (Friday is my birthday), so it was a wonderful surprise to have an email waiting for me that said "Congratulations You Won My Giveaway"!  I have been a follower of Dawn at Creative Cain Cabin for quite a while now ~ I love to read her "What I Wore Wednesday" posts as well as pick up some inspiration on the many projects that she creates!

    Dawn featured a yellow scarf in her last week's What I Wore Wednesday and looked so stylish wearing it too!  To my surprise the next day she started a giveaway for not one, but two scarves!  She had thought ahead and made two extras just to give away!

    I am getting the Yellow Scarf and can't wait to see how it looks on me!

     Thanks Dawn, as always I love your Creative Cain Cabin blog and look forward to continue to read all of your posts!
    Stop by and check out her blog and if it's your first time there, let her know that KL's Cupboard sent you over!

    Friday, October 7, 2011

    Imagination at Work!

    I know that most kids love to build forts....any kind of fort - inside or out!  I think it is programmed into their "nesting" DNA or something.  Normally most of my kid's efforts at fort building take place inside - if I give them a few blankets and sheets and a corner of the living room I have just provided them with hours of entertainment.  Although the end result is fun for them, I think the most fun is in the actual building of the "fort" where the real imagination takes place.

    The other day I came home and found this:
     My hubby came home and he just wanted it cleaned up.... I was happy to see it because when I came home I saw my daughter outside surrounded by all of the neighborhood kids and she was directing and supervising the "building".  She was the youngest one there and if they are at my house I know where she's at and what she is doing.  Happy daughter, at home = happy Mama!

    The fort is still up, looking a little ragged around the edges, her muddy clothes still need to be washed but I have photos and memories (and so does she) which will outlast the muddy clothes, mad Daddy and the actual fort!  These times are what makes being a kid so fun and special!

    I'd love it if you would leave me a comment and let me know what kind of "forts" your kids build!


    Wednesday, October 5, 2011

    Giveaway Still Going On!

    Just wanted to let you know that my giveaway is still going on and it has a low, low number of entries which means your changes of winning are GREAT if you enter! 

    There is only one mandatory entry which is a comment on this post......keep in mind your comment has to let me know which Paper Pack you like the best and then you have to click on the "I Did This" on the Rafflecopter entry!
    Good Luck!

    Get Organized with Duct Tape & Vinyl?

    I have had a problem ~ paperwork overload from my kid's schools!  Papers, papers and more papers which includes calendars, homework schedules, homework, spam from outside sources, fundraisers, book order forms and more!  If you are a parent who has kids in our public school system I am sure you can relate!  My kitchen island would turn into a stock pile of paperwork and we quite frequently missed deadlines, homework was late, tennis shoes were not worn on P.E. days, the book orders missed the deadline and so on and so on!  I was a organizational paperwork failure! 

    It's not that I haven't tried various systems to make it all work.....I've tried the 3 ring binder - one for each kid, but that requires that you open up the binder to see what is going on or coming up and the binders always made their way into the computer cabinet to clear up counter space and only worked for about a week.
    I also tried clear file organizers like these ►
    I had one file for each of my kids and one for "Miscellaneous", these worked pretty well if all you wanted to see was the first page of whatever was "filed".  Then came the crash........after about 9 months of hanging up (with industrial double sided sticky tape) they came crashing down to the floor!  I ended up with a headache and a huge paperwork mess, not to mention the computer cabinet which now boasts sticky tape remnants on the side.  Moving forward......I thought to myself, well maybe I could use my refrigerator and attach everything with magnets, pretty soon the fridge was gone and I had a 6 foot tall paperwork cube (at least that is what it looked like)!

    My last and quite possibly my most brilliant idea came together when I started thinking clear vinyl, duct tape and the removable 3M sticky tabs (the kind you usually use for their hooks).  My first step was to "sketch it out in my head" and then sketch it out on paper, then finally make patterns.  Once I determined that the patterns would work, I started on the real deal!  One thing to keep in mind is that my day job is working for a sign and awning company so I was able to get clear industrial strength vinyl from my work.  I think you could probably get similar clear vinyl at a fabric store and to save on costs the back piece would not have to be vinyl. 
    Here are the steps:
    1. I cut out one long back piece, one bottom pocket piece slightly taller than the rest, and eight slightly shorter pieces.  
    2. The next step was to trim the top of each piece with duct tape, including the top of the long back piece. 
    3. Lay out the long back piece on the table and duct tape the bottom of one of the eight shorter pieces onto the back.  You will need to utilize some good math skills to make it all work together. 
    4. Lay the next of the eight pieces on top of the one you just taped onto the back and tape it at the bottom, I left a 3" gap from the top of one piece to the top of the next.  Continue until you are left with the one piece that is slightly larger than the rest - it should now fit flush with the bottom of the backer piece.
    5. Tap the bottom of this piece and then tape the sides of the whole unit.
    6. Attach however many of the 3M removable double stick tabs you think you will need and attach any embellishments to the front.
    7. Remove the paper from the double stick tape and attach the whole thing to the fridge.  My unit is so large that I removed the paper from the tape in sections....first I attached the top, then the middle section and finally the bottom.
    My unit is rather large so that I can have the bottom piece be the calendar, then I have Monday through Friday spots, one Saturday/Sunday spot, a Future Spot and a Miscellaneous Spot.  It may not be the prettiest of designs, but it works and we haven't missed a "deadline yet".  I purposely left off the exact dimensions that I used, because
              A) I misplaced them and
              B) You may not want yours to be as large as mine.....
    As long as you create paper patterns first to see how it all works you can just use the patterns!
    The unit is designed so that all of the pages will go into their respective slot in landscape
    mode, the edge of each paper sticks out about three inches to make it easy to grab. 


    The bottom slot is the only one designed so that you can see the whole page -
    the idea is that you will only change this paper out monthly.

    This is the calendar at the bottom, it is the only window
    that you can see the whole page.

    I used inexpensive foam stick on letters to label each section.

    This is the top which has Misc. and Future categories!
    My hope is that you can use this to create your own little organizational hub! 

    Tuesday, October 4, 2011

    Dollar Tree Fall Decorations

    Like most Moms trying to balance a family budget I love getting bargains!  No I am not a die hard coupon shopper and I do not buy Sunday News Papers just so I can get the inserts - at $1.50 per Sunday Paper I have to be saving quite a bit (on stuff I need) before I think it is worthwhile!  But, I do love the Dollar Tree and all of the stuff they offer for only a Dollar!  I do have to be careful so I don't nickle and dime myself to death though!

    I went to the Dollar Tree the other day and I was thinking of Fall and the need to add some Fall decorating touches to my house, plus I knew that whatever I bought I could incorporate into my table displays for my shows also!  I picked up some fall leaves, a few fake pumpkins and a couple of apples and this is what I threw together.....

    Monday, October 3, 2011

    My Memories Digital Scrapbooking Software Review & Giveaway!

    UPDATE: Contest has ended, Winner has been chosen and notified!  Congratulations to Amanda!

    I was approached a while back about doing a review of My Memories Digital Scrap-booking Software, I hesitated since I don't normally do reviews for products other than those I sell.  I thought to myself, "Before I do this I need to find out more about digital scrapbooking and what My Memories has to offer".  I love playing around with graphics on my computer but I am completely untrained and everything I create is in Publisher or Paint, needless to say I did not even know that such a thing as digital scrapbooking existed, let alone how to use it.  I have tried my hand in the past with paper scrapbooking, but found it to be very expensive and very time consuming.  I think I still have paper scrapbooking materials packed away somewhere, but like many busy Mom's out there, I just don't have the time or space to commit to scrapbooking the old fashioned way.

    Sunday, October 2, 2011

    Ultimate Blog Challenge

    Today I took the plunge and decided to join The Ultimate Blog Challenge - 31 posts in 31 days!  I am sure that some of my followers have noticed that my blog posts have been further and further apart these days - it used to be that I would post one and sometimes two posts per day!  Lately it seems like I have let life get in the way of my "me time".  My "me time" consists of those things which make me happy and you know what they say, "Happy Wife, Happy Life".....

    I've always tried to write my blog as a combination of all aspects of my life - both the struggles and the triumphs.  I love to read and sometimes I tend to over think or over analyze something and I think that is exactly what I have done in regards to my blog......I have been doing too much reading about what I should be doing with my blog that I have become overwhelmed with should have, should do, etc. that I have hesitated to do anything.