Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Chrome Cowgirl

I had the opportunity to travel to South Dakota over Memorial weekend in celebration of my father's 65th birthday. It is about 14 hours travel time from where I live. The night we arrived, we went to Mount Rushmore and viewed the sculpture. It was fascinating to learn about how this memorial came to be and the master mind behind the masterpiece....Gutzon Borglum. The entire process took about 14 and 1/2 years ( only about 6 and 1/2 of them were actually spent working on the sculpture). The thing I found most interesting is that out of the 400 plus people who worked on the sculpture, there was not one fatality! No serious injuries either! An incredible feat considering the wooden beams, dynamite, small wire cables and the hand cranks that were used to raise and lower men in harnesses.

The Black Hills are definitely a must see if you haven't been there already. We rode on some of the most fun roads while we were there! I own a Honda Shadow Sabre. I love it and had a great time on it. However, we ran into a little snow and a lot of gusty wind. My brother owns two Harleys, one of which my Dad rode. His big one is 1800cc's and I think it is a Screaming Eagle. The one my Dad used is a Heritage Springer. Neither my Dad nor my brother were blown around in the wind at all!!! I was pushed and pulled by the wind sometimes drifting an entire foot sideways! Harley definitely has a lower center of gravity that rides so nicely! I really want one now. I love how reliable Honda is but I think someday I may have to become a Hog girl....when I strike it rich! Seriously, I am just happy to have something to ride. I learned to ride on a tote goat when I was about nine years old. Graduating to a Honda Trail 90...then a 175 and so on. No matter the type of road or bike, I live to ride!

I took my bike for a small spin today and while I was riding down a small country road, a tiny bird flew right at me, hit my foot hard and collapsed. I have never hit an animal while riding before and I felt awful for the crazy bird. It reminded me of a neighbor of mine who said he was riding once and a magpie got blown into his chest! He was able to keep his bike up but it broke his sternum! He still hates magpies to this day!

Monday, May 23, 2011


Wanna know one sure way to find out that you have female cats...they have kittens! This is a two week old kitten. I have three cats that live in the garage. The mother and two of her children (they are about one and half years old). I like having one cat around to keep the mice under control. When the mother cat had kittens I wanted to give them away but was unable to talk my kids into letting them go. Thus, we ended up with three cats! I was never sure whether these two kittens were male or female. I just never had any interest in finding out. Well, a couple of weeks ago BOTH of them had kittens! Fonzie (named inappropriately) had four one day and Zeek (apparently named inappropriately as well) began helping her take care of them. I thought it was strange that Zeek was helping with the mothering responsibilities but Zeek is kind of....shall we just say.....strange! Well the next day, Zeek had two kittens both still born. Fonzie and Zeek continue to share in the mothering of these four kittens. I have not been around mother cats much and never had more than one female cat at a time. I have been amused and interested in watching how they are sharing the caring! The mother cat named Sweet Pea (named appropriately) has been catching mice in the fields and bringing the mice to Fonzie and Zeek! I may have not been out much and don't claim to know cats very well but I am impressed that they would care for one another in this manner. This may all be completely normal...still I can't help but wonder how fat these kittens are going to end up! Every time I go through the garage either Fonzie or Zeek is nursing the lot of them! One thing is for sure...they won't be undernourished!

Here is a picture of one of the tiny babies just learning to open its eyes.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

The Evil Chex Mix!

I have a good friend named Julie whom I took some of this to one day and she told me that her family calls this the "Evil Chex Mix"! The name is so fitting it stuck and now it is referred to as the same in our house. You will understand why when you read the list of ingredients.

I guess my blog should be a food blog considering all the food I post on here! Admittedly, I spend half of my day in the kitchen so I guess that is why you see a lot of food posts! I do love the kitchen! If I could have one room in my house that never needed entering, it would be the laundry room! I loathe laundry! You can breathe easy, you will never see me posting something about folding socks....just in case you were worried!

Evil Chex Mix!
1/2 box of Rice, Corn, and Wheat Chex cereals
1 pound raisins and 1 pound salted peanuts
Combine the cereals, raisins and peanuts
2 cubes of butter
2 cups of white corn syrup
2 cups of white sugar
combine the butter, corn syrup and sugar in a heavy pan and bring to a boil. Boil for 2 minutes, take off heat and add 1 Tablespoon of vanilla. Pour over the cereal mixture. Stir well. Let cool and enjoy!
You can subtract what you don't like or add things you do. For example, add some flaked coconut or a different kind of nut. Experiment using a different variety of cereal as well. Sunflower seeds are good in it too. Be creative and have fun!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Fruit or Vegetable???

Did you know that I tried to look up whether rhubarb is a fruit or vegetable and it is debatable? Some internet sites say it is a fruit because it is used in making pies....sounds logical! One site proclaimed it to be an herb. The majority of the sites I looked at declared it a vegetable. Vegetable Pie? Hmmm....perfect in my book! You can have your dessert and eat your vegetables at the same! Isn't everyone all about saving time these days?

Stewed rhubarb is one of my favorite things to eat. When I was a kid my brother and I would dare each other to eat it raw! If you have ever tried this, you know it can make you pucker like no other! I don't know if this is true but I have heard that rhubarb leaves are poisonous! It is the most interesting vegetable I have ever eaten. I made a pie the other day using the recipe on The Pioneer Woman's website. The streusel topping was fun for a change. Yum!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Beauty of the Earth!

Spending time with some of my favorite people (a.k.a. Moochie and Buttercup!) on a Sunday afternoon is by far more fun than...hmmm.....too many things to list! We went up the canyon and took these pictures. It was a gorgeous day! The rivers are overflowing this year due to the insane amount of rain we have been receiving. I have a new fascination....watching churning water! I found myself thoroughly entertained!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Pulchritudinous! (look it up)

I used to live in a very smoggy city. When I moved to the country, one of the things I missed the most were the vibrant sunsets that occurred on a regular basis. A few months ago, we experienced a beautiful sunset where I currently live. I ran outside and snapped a photo because this type of thing only lasts momentarily and if you are not quick, you are liable to miss it. I am not a photographer and only have a very small inexpensive camera. Despite this, I feel like this photo actually captured some of the true colors in the sky. It has been my experience that most often when something looks amazing in nature, it is often next to impossible to capture the intense colors on film with average equipment. This photo is taken from my house, looking to the west. I had to crop out a power line but I thought it turned out pretty and wanted to share the beauty. I really like the colors. Sunsets are one of my favorite things! I am not sure a sunset can be physically beautiful.....I probably should have used resplendent for the title but I like learning new words and pulchritudinous is one of the strangest words I have ever encountered!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Enticing scones!

Scones that make my mouth water. They are good enough to make you do things you wouldn't normally do! Try making them! I made these for the foundation of Navajo tacos. :)

tender, moist, flaky, mouthwatering scones
1 quart of buttermilk warmed
2 Tblsp. yeast
1/4 C. warm water
2 eggs, beaten
3 Tblsp. sugar
3 Tblsp. oil
8 C. flour
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
3 Tblsp. baking powder

Dissolve sugar and yeast in warm water. Add buttermilk, eggs and oil. Sift dry ingredients together and add 4 C. to yeast mixture. Mix well then add remaining 4 cups gradually. Mix well...knead if necessary. Let raise until double in bulk. Beat mixture down and put in fridge overnight or use it then. Roll out and fry in 350* oil.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Peanut Butter Bars...a little bit of heaven!

These bars are the ultimate comfort food! Whomever came up with the brilliant idea of combining peanut butter and chocolate is a true genius! I will be forever indebted to them. When I make these, I double the recipe and use a 16x10" pan. I am not sure where I got this size of pan but I love it!! I double the icing recipe as well. What more could you ask for????

Peanut Butter Bars with Chocolate Icing.

1/2 C. Butter
1/2 C. Sugar
1/2 C. Brown Sugar
1 egg
1/3 C. Peanut Butter
1/2 tsp. Baking Soda
1/4 tsp. Salt
1 tsp. Vanilla
1 C. Flour
1 C. Oatmeal

Cream butter, sugars and peanut butter together. Add egg and vanilla. Sift dry ingredients and add to peanut butter mixture. Stir in oatmeal. Spread in a greased 9x13" pan. Bake in a 350* oven 15-20 minutes. Do not over bake.

Chocolate Icing

2 and 1/2 C. Powdered Sugar
2 Tblsp. Cocoa
1/4 C. Butter
3-4 Tblsp. Milk
1 tsp. Vanilla

Blend until smooth. Spread over cooled bars. Enjoy them with a milk chaser.