Monday, August 31, 2009

My 8X10 entry's for the fair

Here are the photo's that I've decided to use as my 8X10 entries for the fair this coming week. I hope you enjoy them. Let me know what you think.

This one is my Landscape entry

This is my Any Subject Black and White

This one is my Any Other entry...I think I'm going to title this one "Water Under The Bridge."

This one is my Animals entry

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Tip Junkie's Trade Secret Swap

I trolling about the blogsphere this morning and I came across this swap being put on by Tip Junkie. It's called Tip Junkie's Trade Secret Swap. If you would like to participate the sign up goes until October 1 and you will recieve your partner's information shortly after that.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

A quick thank you

I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who left me messages about my great grandma. So far she's still with us but nobody really thinks it will go on much longer. All of the arrangements are made from what my grandma has told me all done to what my great grandma had written down. So I'm staying home from work tonight...going to work on my entries for the fair that's coming up next week....should things take yet another turn.


Payton Manning Commerical

Friday, August 28, 2009

It's a waiting game....

Wednesday night we received a phone call from my aunt telling us that my great grandma was in the hospital and had a stroke. The kicker in this whole thing is that the next morning when I talked to my grandma everyone had lead her to believe that everything is okie dokie....that great grandma was "talking" and able to move about. Basically lying through their teeth to her. Come to find out that this "no big deal" has turned into a HUGE deal....We're actually sitting here waiting on my great grandma to pass away. I feel a little bit comforted by the fact that the hospital has made great grandma as comfortable as possible and that Hospice will be taking over her care for her until she does pass.

Confessions of a Country Girl part 5

I’ve posted numerous times that I have am trying to better with my money. Well to be honest, so far I have been failing pretty miserably. Every time I think I’m headed in the right direction and I take 2 steps forward…something comes along to knock me off course so I end up taking at least 1 step back. My major problem has been “plastic shopping”….I’ve come to realize that credit cards are more trouble than they are worth. Let me break it down for you…On 4 credit cards I have racked up roughly $3634.24 in debt. That doesn’t even include what I still owe on my car and what I still owe my dad for the money he lent me to get my car fixed last December.

My second major problem is that I currently have the mindset that “I have money…I must spend it.” Unfortunately, I don’t always spend it on the things that I actually need and spend it mostly on things that I really could live without. I am working on changing my mindset but old habits do die hard sometimes.

I have taken steps to try and correct my behavior though. I have recently taken to studying various money saving webpages and blogs on the net, I’ve also started cutting coupons, I’m a BIG TIME reader so I’ve joined to get some of the books that I really want to read (it costs me nothing to request books, but if someone requests one of mine all it costs me is postage), I will be starting to utilize my local library more as well. I’ve got more idea’s to but this could be a SUPER long paragraph if I share it all with you.

What I’m asking from you is for you to be my support system I guess. I could really use some “cheerleaders” right now because when I do ALL the math the number just makes me want to vomit. So to keep me honest I will be occasionally issuing myself challenges and I’ll be posting tickers of ALL my debt. Please feel free to share idea’s, suggestions, etc. with me…I’m literally all ears at this point.

Confessions of a Country Girl part 4

On Mother’s day we brought home our new “furbaby” Augusta or “Gus” as we like to call her. We didn’t formally adopt her until to 20th of May, just to make sure that she would be a good fit for our family and that her and Laci did indeed get along, we did a 10 day foster period. When I went out to the shelter the day that we formally adopted her in our “mountain” of paperwork that I got was a coupon for a free wellness exam at the local veterinary service in town. When I got home from doing all the paperwork and such I called and set up the appointment. Fast forward to the next Wednesday….We go to our appointment and everything is going well until the vet starts feeling around. And finds not 1, not 2, but 5 mammary tumors on Gus.

When we adopted Gus we were told that she had been given a complete wellness exam and everything was great…All she was missing was her rabies shot and her heartworm test. So it came as quite a shock to find out that our cute little furbaby had 5 mammary tumors. We’ve been all over the place emotionally with this one. Gus is officially adopted in my name so this has really hurt me alot. I feel taken advantage of and cheated. My parents are just flat out pissed and feel that the shelter we adopted her from did basically NOTHING for her while she was there other than take her outside, feed her, water her and get her spayed.

Now we are faced with the decision to have a really expensive surgery done on Gus to have the tumors removed or don’t. We’ve been here before. Last November we had our 19 year old Black Lab/Cocker mix put down and we were almost 100% sure that she did have cancer. She had tumor on the top of her head and a couple along her back as well. But because of her age the vet wouldn’t do surgery. This sort of thing takes it’s toll on you emotionally and PHYSICALLY also. I’ve cried a bunch over this and I have a feeling I’m not done crying over it either.

……To be continued

Confessions of a Country Girl part 3

I feel sort of out of place here in the blogging world. A lot of the blogs that I visit or have visited via my comment support group SITS seem to be more “mommy” blogs. Sometimes I feel that when I comment on a “mommy” blog that when they come to visit my blog and find out that my blog isn’t a “mommy” blog they don’t leave comments. I’m not knocking “mommy” bloggers….Hey that’s totally AWESOME to blog about your kiddo’s….I just feel left out, cause I’m not a mommy.

Have I mentioned that I hate feeling like it’s me against the world? If I haven’t I do….A LOT. Right now….It seems that the world is winning instead of me…I hate that even more.

Have I mentioned that I’m jealous of my mom’s new DSLR camera? I want one too…Just can’t afford it.

Have I mentioned that I love blogging about my “problems?” It’s definately cheaper than therapy.

to be continued…..

Confessions of a Country Girl part 2

I pretty much feel like I’m a prisoner to Ms. Laci. When we adopted her she pretty much decided that I was her person and she’s bonded with me pretty tightly (if she could go everywhere…and I mean EVERYWHERE…with me she would) to the point that if I leave to go anywhere there are days that she will sit at the front door and howl until I return.

I’ve been trying to lose some weight on and off for a long time now. Since my Dr. appointment on April 1 where my dr. gave me some really great advice on things I can do to aid in my weight loss I’m down 5.8 pounds. I’ve decided that my goal weight is 140….I started at 161.3 pounds so I’m well on my way.

I took Ms. Laci to the vet to get her shots updated and our vet has officially put her on a diet. In the almost 2 months since her last visit to the vet she’s gained almost another 2 pounds….putting her close to 28 pounds. Our vet says she could stand to lose at least 4 pounds. So Ms. Laci and I are both dieting right now.

As kind of a stress reliever I’ve been doing a lot of reading, walking and I just recently took up knitting again. I had kind of taken a little bit of a breather from knitting to work on some other projects to but the opportunity arose to try a new knitting challenge….A baby Afghan. One of my co-workers found out that she’s having a baby in November and I thought I’d knit her and her husband an afghan.

to be continued….

Thursday, August 27, 2009

I have 2 problems

It's a dreary, rainy, extremely BLAH day here is South West Wisconsin today and I have 2 problems.

This is Laci...She's problem number 1.

This is Gus...She is problem number 2.

It does appear that both of our dogs suffer from a VERY dibilitating condition called cantgetmypawswetitis. Which is going to make "outside time" for the next couple of days very interesting considering it is supposed to rain here on and off clear through until next monday.

Importing Posts

I've been in the process of importing some of my posts from my wordpress blog. So far I've imported all of my recipe posts and I've started on the Confessions. There are a couple of new posts at the very beginning of this blog...a little joke and a post about a possessed gourd plant.
Tomorrow morning I have the remainder of my Confessions posts scheduled to post. Just wanted to put that out there for y'all.

Confessions of a Country Girl part 1

It’s been a week since the liquor cabinet was calling me. I wish the liquor cabinet wouldn’t call to me….Alcohol is so NOT the answer to my problems. Alcohol just seems to cover up the problem’s for a little while and make’s you feel a little less like the “machine” that you and your life currently has become. I don’t need to cover up my problem’s…I need to figure out exactly what they are and deal with them. So far I’ve been pretty bad at figuring out what my problem’s are and dealing with them.

You ever just have “one of THOSE” days? Recently, it seems that I’ve been having them on a pretty regular basis when it comes to my place of employment. I’m basically sitting around waiting for my supervisors to come up with something new and exciting to get on my case about. After basically being told that I’m the problem, I have developed a little bit of an attitude towards my supervisors. I pretty much show up do my job, go home and only talk to my supervisors when they talk to me. Now I’m not in a position where I can leave my job…..The job market where I’m at is pretty dismal…..So I’m pretty much sucking it up and being a gluton for punishment.

On top of all of my work related issues, I’ve had a pretty crappy beginning to 2009 also. Well, pretty much from the end of November until now (so far anyway) has been pretty dismal on good things happening to me. Which if you want the highlights you can find them in this post.

Currently, I feel like I’m nothing more than a machine. There really aren’t enough changes to my daily routine right now to NOT consider myself a machine. 4 days a week I go to bed between 9 and 10 in the morning, get up between 6:30 and 7 that night, get ready for work, leave between 8:20 and 8:30, show up at work around 9, work for 10 hours and go home and do it all over again. On my days off, it get’s mixed up a little bit more but not much. The last couple of days it’s been raining so Ms. Laci and I haven’t been going out for walks, because she doesn’t “do” rain or inclimate weather real well.

to be continued…..

Bread Machine Pizza Dough


2 teaspoons active dry yeast
3 cups bread flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup olive oil
1 cup water


1. Add ingredients in the order recommended for your bread machine and set to dough cycle.
2. After it’s finished, transfer dough to lightly oiled pan.
3. For a thick crust, cover and allow to rise for about 20 minutes; for thin, bake right away.
4. Heap with toppings of your choice and bake in 450 degree oven for about 20 minutes.
5. Enjoy

Sticky Chicken


2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon paprika
2 teaspoons garlic powder
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon fresh spices (rosemary, oregano, etc.) – 1 teaspoon of each
1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1 large roasting chicken
1 cup chopped onion


In a small bowl, thoroughly combine all of your spices. Remove giblets from chicken, clean the cavity well and pat dry with paper towels. Chop onion. Rub the spice mixture into the chicken, both inside and out, making sure that it is evenly coated and down deep into the skin. Add some onion to the bottom of the crock pot….add remaining onion to the inside of the bird. When ready to cook the chicken place it in the slow cooker BUT DO NOT ADD ANY LIQUID. As the cooking process goes along it will produce it’s own juices. Cook on LOW for 8 to 10 hours and it will be falling off the bone tender.

Crock Pot Roast with Potatos and Carrots


3-4 pound Roast
1/2 cup Jalapeno Jelly (or any type of jelly)
1 Packet Onion Soup mix
4-5 potatoes, peeled and cubed
1/2 bag baby carrots


Take roast, frozen or thawed, and place it into the crock pot. Pour 1/2 cup of Jalapeno jelly (or any other jelly) on top of the roast. Next pour on top the Onion Soup packet, rub into jelly and all over the roast. Peel and cube potatoes, place on top of 2 large sheets of aluminum foil, then pour on top 1/2 bag of baby carrots, salt and pepper to taste. Seal up foil and place on top of the roast. Turn crock pot on HIGH for 4-6 hours or LOW for 6-8 hours. Remove from crock pot and pour some of the roast drippings onto the potatoes and carrots. Enjoy.

borrowed from The Newlyweds!

Zesty Slow Cooker BBQ Chicken

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 4 hours
Ready In: 4 hours 10 minutes
Serves: 6


6 frozen skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 (12 oz) bottle barbeque sauce (to add variety to the flavor try different types of BBQ sauce)
1/2 cup Italian salad dressing
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 Tablespoons Worchestershire sauce

1. Place chicken in a slow cooker. In a bowl, mix the barbeque sauce, Italian dressing, brown sugar, and Worchestershire sauce. Pour over chicken.
2. Cover, and cook 3 to 4 hours on HIGH or 6 to 8 hours on LOW.

Depression Era Homemade Bread

This recipe calls for a whole 5 lb. bag of flour. At our house we don’t have a bowl big enough for that much flour so I had to 1/2 the recipe into 2 bowls. Below are the ingredients and directions that I followed.


2.5 pounds of flour (in each bowl)
3 Tbs yeast (in each bowl)
3 tps salt (in each bowl)
3 cups warm water (in each bowl)


Mix all ingredients together in the bowls….Use your hands it will be much easier. After you have mixed everything together, take dough out of the bowls, clean up the bowls (make sure to dry them) and spray with cooking spray (the spray will make taken the dough out of the bowls easier after it has risen). Cover and leave in a warm place to rise. After the dough has risen for desired amount of time, take dough out of the bowls and knead on a clean counter surface to get all the air bubbles out. Separate dough into pieces and place into sprayed bread pans. Cover and allow to rise. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes (mine needed more than 30 minutes though).



1 Tablespoon Sugar
1 Tablespoon Ground Cinnamon
1 Cup Shortening
1 1/2 cups Sugar
2 Eggs
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
2 3/4 cups flour
1 teaspoon Baking Soda
1/2 teaspoon Salt
2 Teaspoons Cream of Tartar


In a bowl combine 1 Tablespoon sugar and cinnamon; set aside. In a second bowl, cream shortening; gradually add 1 1/2 cups sugar, beating well. Add eggs; beat well. Stir in Vanilla.
In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, salt and cream of tartar. Add sifted ingredients to creamed mixture; stir until well blended (I acutally had to get in there and kneed with my hands). Shape dough into 1-inch balls and roll in cinnamon/sugar mixture.
Place snickerdoodles 2 inches apart on baking sheets. Bake cookies at 400 degrees for approximately 6 minutes (mine needed a couple minutes longer) or until lightly browned. Remove from baking sheet to wire racks for cooling.

Warm and Comfy Chicken Pot Pie


3 cups cooked, diced chicken
10 oz. frozen mixed veggies
1 can cream of celery soup
1 cup chicken broth
1/4 tsp pepper
1 cup Bisquick
3/4 cup milk
1 cup melted butter


Pour cooked, diced chicken in a 13X9″ pan sprayed with oil. Pour frozen veggies over chicken. Blend together in a bowl, celery soup, chicken broth and pepper until smooth and pour over chicken and veggies. In another bowl stir together Bisquick, milk and melted butter. When blended smooth, pour over the ingredients in the pan. Bake 45-50 minutes at 400 degrees. Cool 10 minutes before serving.

Crock Pot Fabulous 4-Bean Hotdish


8 oz. bacon, cut up
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 – 16 oz. can pork and beans
1 – 16 oz. can green beans, drained
1 – 15 1/2 oz. can butter beans, drained
1 – 15 1/2 oz. can kidney beans
1/2 cup ketchup
1/4 – 1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. prepared mustard
1/2 tsp. salt


Brown bacon and onion together; add to crock-pot. Stir in remaining ingredients. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours.

Impossibly Easy Cheesburger Pie


1 lb. Ground Beef
1 Large onion, Chopped
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
1/2 cup Bisquick
1 cup milk
2 eggs


Preheat your oven to 400 degrees. Spray the bottom of your baking pan. Brown your ground beef and add onion; drain. Stir in salt. Spread mixture into your baking pan and sprinkle with cheese. In a mixing bowl, mix together the remaining ingredients, pour into pan. Bake for 25 minutes.

Serves: 6

Potatoe Sticks

4 Medium Potatoes (peeled)
2 1/2 tsp. seasoned salt
1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese
1/4 cup butter

In a 9″ glass dish make 2 layers of potatoes, seasoning, cheese and butter. Sprinkle with paprika, microwave covered for about 16-18 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes….Then enjoy!

Bread Machine Cinnabons



4 T. melted butter
4 T. water
1/3 cup instant vanilla pudding
1 cup milk
1 egg
1 T. sugar
4 cups bread flour
2 1/2 tsp. yeast


Place ingredients into bread machine in order listed. Set for dough cycle. After cycle is complete, roll into 17 X 10 inch rectangle. Butter the dough rectangle. Sprinkle the dough with a mixture of 1 cup brown sugar and 2 teaspoons cinnamon. Roll tightly, pinch edges closed and slice into 1/2 inch slices. Place into greased 13X9″ pan and bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes. While still warm spread with frosting.

Frosting Ingredients:

4 oz. cream cheese
1/4 cup butter
1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
1 1/2 tsp milk

Luscious Slush Punch

15 Min

5 Min

8 Hrs 20 Min

Serves: 50


2 1/2 cups white sugar
6 cups water
2 (3 ounce) packages strawberry flavored gelatin mix
1 (46 fluid ounce) can pineapple juice
2/3 cup lemon juice
1 quart orange juice
2 (2 liter) bottles lemon-lime flavored carbonated beverage


In a large saucepan, combine sugar, water, and strawberry flavored gelatin. Boil for 3 minutes. Stir in pineapple juice, lemon juice, and orange juice. Divide mixture in half, and freeze in 2 separate containers.

When ready to serve, place the frozen contents of one container in a punch bowl, and stir in 1 bottle of lemon-lime soda until slushy.

Pastor Ryan's Bolognese Sauce

The photo I borrowed from PW’s webpage. Her photography is soooo much better than my not-so-good photography.

Ryan’s Bolognese

1 1/2 cups grated carrots
1 large red onion, diced
1/2 cup olive oil
2 pounds ground beef
2 tablespoons dried parsley flakes CORRECTED: OREGANO flakes
2 tablespoons dried basil flakes
1 6-ounce can tomato paste
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 to 2 cups red wine
2 tablespoons Worcestershire
2 28-ounce cans whole tomatoes
1 cup milk
Fresh Parmesan cheese

Heat oil in a large Dutch oven or skillet over medium heat. Add grated carrots and onions and cook for a few minutes.

Make a well in the center of the mixture, then add in the ground beef. Cook for a few minutes until brown, gradually stirring it into the carrot mixture.

Throw in oregano and basil. Use fresh if you have it; if you don’t, it’s fine. When the meat is browned and combined with other ingredients, make another well. Add tomato paste and let it heat.

Add garlic and stir to combine.

Make a well in the center of the mixture and add red wine. Stir together.

Add Worcestershire and stir.

Add canned tomatoes.

Finally, pour in milk, stir, and let simmer for 30 minutes to 2 hours—however long you need.

Serve with pasta and a generous sprinkling of Parmesan cheese.


Doughnut Recipe

I LOVE doughnuts but sometimes it’s just not convenient to just run out and get a couple plus the cost adds up quick. I found this recipe for bread machine doughnuts (I’m sure that they can be made without a bread machine also) last week and I made two batches of this recipe and it makes a whole bunch of doughnuts. We had 2 1/2 freezer bags left over from what we didn’t eat.

3/4 cup milk or water
2 large eggs
4 Tablespoons melted butter
1 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup sugar
3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons active dry yeast
Vegetable oil (for frying)

1. Place ingredients in bread machine according to manufacturer and set to dough setting. When cycle is complete, remove dough, punch down and let rest for 10 minutes.

2. On lightly floured surface, roll out dough to 1/2-inch thick. Cut with floured doughnut cutter. Place on lightly greased baking sheet and let rise for about 1 hour or until very light.

3. Fry in preheated 375 degree oil, a few at a time, about 1 minute, each side. Drain on paper towl. Glaze or dust with powdered sugar, as desired.

Makes about 24 doughnuts

3 cups powdered sugar
1 Tablespoon butter, softened (optional)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
Milk or water

1. Combine the powdered sugar, butter and vanilla in a mixing bowl. Mix well and add just enough milk or water until glaze is the consistency you desire. (A thinner consistency will produce a thin glaze on the doughnuts or a thicker consistency will be more like a frosting.)

Attack of the Gourd Plant

This spring when we planted our garden we decided that we were going to keep it simple. We pretty much planted a bunch of bulbs and a gourd well as some petunia's and marigolds to add a little color until the bulbs came up. Well look what happens when you plant 1 gourd plant, that according to the information on the stick that came stuck in the pot is only supposed to grow about 5 feet around.

Basically, this gourd plant has taken over our garden and is in the process of killing everything else in it. It is also trying to infiltrate our neighbors yard as well. I'm thinking this gourd plant is either pocessed or possibly on 'roids.

A well planned retirement

From the London Times
Outside the Bristol Zoo, in England , there is a parking lot for 150 cars and 8 coaches, or buses. It was manned by a very pleasant attendant with a ticket machine charging cars $1.40 and coaches $7.00.
This parking attendant worked there solid for all of 25 years. Then, one day, he just didn't turn up for work."Well", said Bristol Zoo Management, "we'd better phone City Council and get them to send a new parking attendant."
"", said the Council, "that parking lot is your responsibility."
"No", said Bristol Zoo Management, "the attendant was employed by the City Council. Wasn't he?"
"NO!" insisted the Council. "We thought he was your employee all of these years."
Sitting in his villa somewhere on the coast of Spain or on a white sandy beach somewhere, is a bloke who had been taking the parking lot fees, estimated at about $560 per day at the Bristol Zoo for the last 25 years. Assuming 7 days a week, this amounts to just over $7 million!And no one even knows his name.
Golden. Simply golden.