Eighteen Days ‘Til Christmas

With the cold weather we’ve been having the last few days, a cup of hot tea will give you a warm glow and lighten your spirits!

Here are some delightful heartwarming tea recipes you might want to try:

Hot Spiced Tea
6 cups water
1 tsp. whole cloves
1 piece cinnamon stick
6 tea bags of your choice
3/4 cup orange juice
1/2 cup white sugar
1/4 cup pineapple juice
2 Tbs. lemon juice

Bring water to boil; add cloves, cinnamon stick. Simmer a few minutes. Remove from heat and add tea bags; steep until desired strength (min. five minutes). Remove spices and tea bags. Set aside.

In a small saucepan stir in orange juice, sugar, pineapple juice, and lemon juice; bring to a boil. Stir juice until all of the sugar dissolves completely. Pour juice mixture into the spiced tea. Serve hot. (adapted from )


Hot Toddy French Vanilla

6 Bigelow French Vanilla Tea Bags
2 cups heavy cream
2 cups whole milk
¼ tsp salt
1 cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon rum extract

Place tea bags, heavy cream, whole milk in a microwave safe bowl and place in the microwave. Heat the tea bags, cream and milk on high for 4 minutes, stirring at 1 minute intervals. Carefully remove from the microwave and allow the tea bags to steep for 10 minutes. Remove the tea bags and press with the back of a spoon to release all flavors -discard used tea bags. Add remaining ingredients and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Pour into 4 heat proof cups/mugs, top with whipped cream and cinnamon. Enjoy!

PS  When I went to make this recipe I couldn’t find Bigelow ‘s French Vanilla, so I bought their Vanilla Chai instead.  And since we use nonfat milk I substituted that for the whole milk.  I must say, it was fantastic!!  Sort of like a spicy spiked eggnog.  I halved the recipe since there’s just my husband and me – but I could have drank the whole thing it was so good! 


cup of tea-002

Hot Holiday Tea

1 1/2 cups water
8 Bigelow® Apple Cider Herbal Tea Bags
1 1/2 cups cranberry juice
1 cup burgundy wine
Cinnamon sticks as a garnish

In a medium saucepan, bring water to boil, add tea, cover and let steep for 5 minutes. Remove teabags.
Stir in cranberry juice and wine. Return to medium heat. Heat thoroughly.
Serve in a large pottery mug. Garnish each cup with a cinnamon stick.


Sharing with Pink Saturday .

Scavenger Hunt today, sightseeing and burros

Sharing with Ashley Sisk’s Scavenger Hunt Sunday and Sunny Simple Life.



We had visitors this week and took them to see Oatman, Arizona, an old gold mining town, considered to be a ghost town,  located on historic route 66.  The main drag is about two blocks long and is lined with souvenir shops, a few restaurants, and one old hotel where Clark Gable and Carole Lombard spent their honeymoon in 1939.  There are plenty of wild burro wandering around, looking for handouts from the tourist, who feed them apples or carrots.  The baby burros have stickers on their foreheads reading, “STOP!  “Don’t Feed Me”.  I was told by a local that the baby burro’s digestive system cannot handle this kind of food yet.



Now, this is a far stretch – one of the wild burros stuck his head in our car just as we were fixing to drive out of town and DH and he started chatting like crazy, I mean, they were really chatterboxes! They both chatted so much they decided they’d take a little snooze 😆




This is from my archives. Two baby bunnies giving each other comfort. I found them in the middle of my backyard around three-thirty in the morning. The mother must have been moving them from one location to another when I happened to come outside for my dog’s last pit stop before turning in.



Now, this kitchen may seem cluttered, but being that it’s my kitchen, it’s remarkably uncluttered! That’s what happens when company comes – some of the clutter disappears. But feeling so good having it look bright and airy, I thought I would share some pixs with you. Oh, note the electronics in one of the pixs along the side wall next to the refrig. I spend practically 24/7 in the kitchen, watching TV while I multi-task on the computer. And then some times I even cook!





These are my neighbor’s tree with branches hanging over on my side, so I was able to get some macros of the flower blossoms – allergyville! But pretty nonetheless.

Hope you have enjoyed the scavenger hunt today!

Here We Go! – Scavenger Hunt Sunday

Prompts for this Sunday’s Scavenger Hunt are: Recycle; Auto; People Watching; Park; Basket.  For more fun scavenger hunts go to Ashley Sisk’s Scaventer Hunt Sunday.

Recycle IMG_5163-001

This is a pair of old Bakelite salt and pepper shakers inherited from my husband’s mother. They go back to between the 1920-1940s and have just sold on eBay – so recycled!

Auto Recently Updated-001

Has anyone seen this before? It has two little dolphins in it and when it’s  plugged in and turned on it slowly rocks up and down, and the little dolphins ride the waves back and forth! After being stored for a few years I misplaced the power pack – tried two or three that I did find but none worked.  But when I was packing up our little Christmas tree with it’s power pack it dawned on my that maybe the Christmas tree power pack would work (seeing that they were both generic – made in China –  and not Sony or some other brand name.)  Voila’! It worked! Now I must remember next Christmas where the power pack is!


IMG_5145-001 I haven’t taken too many photos this week, but took this one of my angel statue in the backyard with little bricks around her and the yellow garden hippo creating my small little “park”. 🙂

People Watching


Waiting for the big day!


“Help! I’m caught and I can’t get out!

Tea Time – how would you like your tea?

And a good time was had by all! Today my P.E.O.  group, Chapter EX,  gave a benefit Christmas tea party.  P.E.O.  (Philanthropic Educational Organization) is a philanthropic organization where women celebrate the advancement of women; educate women through scholarships, grants, awards, loans, and stewardship of Cottey College and motivate women to achieve their highest aspirations.

We had vintage teapots, modern teapots, as well as whimsical Christmas teapots.   The menu included scones, banana bread, finger sandwiches, an assortment of cool and refreshing fruit cups, and deserts to die for – creme puffs, lime curd in phyllo shells, checkered cake and glazed cookies.   Each table was hosted by a member, who brought the food to the table, poured tea and made their guests feel welcome.  We also had a hat contest – and some of the hats were a riot!  The winner of the contest had a beautiful 1949 red print felt cloche hat that belonged to her mother.

Here are a mosaic of photos  taken right after everyone set up their table.  I am sharing these with Blue Monday and Mosaic Monday.











Smiling Sally

Traditional – haiku

dewdrops on the grass
dawn slowly breaks sun rises


bubbly golden crust
with plump apples piled high
eager faces wait


hot sweet potatoes
under melted marshmallows
golden roasted bird

Go to Sensational Haiku Wednesday for more haiku. Each week a new prompt (word) is given and the challenge is to create haiku with that word or describing the word. Join in the fun!
Join the fun!

Scavenger Hunt Sunday

It’s Sunday already! Time for the scavenger hunt – and find something that will represent the following words: Candid; toys; any of the five senses; batteries; and half.


This is Sparky and her first (or second) favorite toy – but this is a candid shot believe it or not.


At first, Sparky’s toys were going to be my subject but I went into my office (which I don’t use regularly) and spotted all my bears and Elmo in the chair  – aha! There’s my toys setting on a pile of papers I will get to some day, some day, some day.


One of the five senses – Taste

Here is my Thanksgiving dinner last year.


We’ve always kept our batteries in the refrigerator, supposedly because they last longer.  This is our wet bar frig, and oh, that O’Doul’s beer has been there  for several years.  When Mom was about 97  I switched her to non-alcohol beer since she couldn’t remember how many beers she had drank – and that could really cause problems! I guess I hold on to the beer for sentimental reasons?? or just haven’t got around to throwing it away 🙂


Half a banana
Is better than none at all
Just make it the top

Scavenger Hunt Sunday Scavenger Hunt Sunday – everyone welcome!

Scavenger Hunt Sunday

And How Does Your Garden Grow?

Welcome to my new theme!  (Just like a woman – always changing her looks).

These are marguerite daisies I had growing in my square foot garden a season ago.  The daisies were surrounded with herbs – Italian parsely, mint, thyme and garlic.

Growing Herbs in the Home Garden is a good website for the beginning gardener. It has a list of all the herbs, how to grow and harvest each species, and uses ranging from food to liquor to perfume – and more. There is nothing like going out to your garden to snip off some parsley and garlic chives, pull out a few small onions and add them to the meal you are cooking. I can’t wait till the weather cools down a bit so I can get my garden started!

Out of the Garden Salad/

A Recipe For Happiness

After spending a bundle at the vet’s office on my thirteen-year-old dog, Sparky, and finding there was nothing wrong (or not finding anything wrong) I analyzed Sparky’s behavior and eating habits.  Since she had her teeth cleaned and quite a number of them pulled, Sparky tended to swallow her food whole.  I know most dogs don’t make a habit of chewing their food well, but Sparky was really gulping it down!  That’s when I decided to try some home-cooked meals – I say meals instead of home-cooked dog food because it’s perfectly fine for humans, too!

After researching online I chose several recipes – one using ground turkey and the other cooked chicken parts – drumsticks, thighs, breasts. The ground turkey is the easiest:  You pour Six cups of water in a large pot, add Two cups of uncooked rice; add a pound of ground turkey, breaking it into small pieces and sprinkle in some dried ground basil.  Don’t add onions or garlic since neither is considered safe for dogs to eat.   Bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium-low, simmer and cook for about 20 minutes – or until almost done.  Then add 1/3 to 1/2 package of frozen mixed vegetables or green beans or carrots – most dogs like quite a variety of vegetables; and cook 5-10 more minutes.  This makes enough food for three meals for each dog. (Sparky is 50 pounds and Mandy is 15 pounds).  This last batch only stretched to two meals because my husband, Roy,  and I had some for dinner also!  It was fine just as it was for Roy’s bland taste but I added some garlic powder and salt to mine.

In all the thirteen years we’ve owned Sparky she has always just laid there, watching me prepare her dry dog food while Mandy would be prancing and dancing around like she just couldn’t wait any longer.   Well, after eating Mommy’s home-cooked food for about a week,  Sparky has become vocal also, giving a few anticipatory woofs!  Now, lest anyone think this is a burden cooking up food for their pets, I must say it has made me very happy!  My husband has “exotic” tastes: peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, swiss cheese sandwiches and salads.  He doesn’t like to eat meat or most fowl – turkey once in awhile, prefers his meals cooled down (a lot).  So,  the “Joy of Cooking” for me had disappeared – until I started cooking for Sparky and Mandy!  They’ve helped me to realize it isn’t so much what I feed them – it’s their wonderful response to my cooking that makes it such a pleasure to get in the kitchen and cook.  Now if I could just get DH to do the same when I fix his peanut butter and jelly sandwiches!  

Out-of-the-Garden Salad



Assorted garden lettuce
Couple baby carrots (tiny ones)
Sliced kohlrabi
Snipped garlic chives
Baby pea pods
Nasturtium leaves and a flower or two
Lawry’s garlic powder
Minced onion bits

Use kitchen shears to cut up carrots, chives, and nasturtium leaves. Throw pea pods in whole and slice kohlrabi in thin slivers. Toss with small amount of honey-dijon dressing. Awesome!