July 30, 2009

The Swat Dance, Pink Poodles and Commenting on My Own Blog

This has been an interesting year for weather. Our monsoon season was late getting here and instead of having April showers we had them in May which threw the whole spring season off and it jumped from nipply jacket weather to dig out your Daisy Duke’s and halter tops quicker than you can say Jack Robinson. Does anybody know who Jack Robinson is and why we say that?

Then as some of ya’ll know we had a firestorm that raged through terribly close to my humble abode skeering us plum to death. In case you don’t know, skeered is worse than scared.

So why am I giving you an Oklahoma weather report, you might ask? Because I’m trying to figure out what happened to the flies? No, I don’t miss the little varmints but last night I was cooking weenies down at the church for vacation Bible school cause nobody knows weenies like I do (wink, wink), when somebody opened the back door and a couple of flies flew in. It occurred to me that I have hardly had any at my house and suddenly I’m trying to figure out why. Please don’t send me any of yours. I figure God owes us that much for all the other bad stuff we’ve had to endure.

Normally we have to do the swat dance at every family gathering or potluck dinner because the flies are trying to carry off the food as fast as we cook it. Ya’ll all know the steps to that one if you haven’t danced it yourself you’ve surely seen your Great Aunt Tildy at family reunions with a paper plate in each hand swaying in the breeze keeping the flies out of the food. You don’t need a partner or music; paper plates are optional. I’m pretty proficient at it myself.

You remember my wife swapping neighbors I told ya’ll about? Well the other day I looked over as I was pulling out of my garage to go to Wal-Mart because I ran out of Tide and low and behold she’s dyed her poodle pink. No I’m not making it up and if it wasn’t ten in the morning I would have thought I’d had one too many Coronas but sure as sunshine the poor dog is now pink. She has a beauty parlor in her garage and maybe business is slow and she didn’t have anything else better to do one day or perhaps she’d had one too many, who knows. It was barking at me all pissed off and I can’t say as I blame the poor thing. I’d be pissed off too if somebody dyed me pink. Of all the nerve. Poor baby.

Is anyone else having trouble commenting on their own MySpace blog? I have to refresh the page and sometimes that doesn’t even work. If I haven’t commented to your comment it just might be because I can’t.

My local radio station was talking about people leaving MySpace and asked jokingly if anybody was even on there anymore. Yeah, I’m still here. I’m like death and taxes you can count on me always being here. Okay that wasn’t a very good analogy, but ya’ll know what I mean.

July 27, 2009

Baking Soda, Not Just For Baking

Most of us know about putting a box of baking soda in the refrigerator to deodorize it and sprinkling it in the carpet eliminates pet smells.

Did you know you can also clean your silver with it? Moisture in the air causes silver to tarnish, the more humidity the faster this process. Silver loves to be handled, the oils in our skin keeps it from turning that yucky dark color that over time will deteriorate your pieces like rust.

Silver does not like rubber so do not wear rubber gloves to polish your silver. Either do it barehanded or while wearing cotton. Other enemies of this metal are salt, vinegar, fruit juices and eggs.

If you put flowers in a silver vase make sure to put a glass or plastic liner in first because as the flowers start to decay they will damage your silver.

Now that you know what to keep away from your silver, here’s how to clean it. You will need aluminum foil, baking soda, boiling water and salt. Place a sheet of aluminum foil in the bottom of a sink (I don’t advice doing this in a stainless steel sink), add enough boiling water to cover pieces, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 teaspoon salt. Add silver pieces, making sure the water covers the pieces. Remove silver, rinse, dry, and buff with a soft cloth. This method cleans the design and crevices. Great for etched ware you have a hard time cleaning.

You can use this method for jewelry too. You won’t need a full sink full unless you have let your entire collection go bad. A glass bowl or baking dish works great for this.

If you have a small piece that needs cleaning, you can make a paste of baking soda and water, rub the piece down, rinse and dry. It should be clean and shiny.

For sinks and counter tops that shouldn’t be cleaned with scouring powder you can use baking soda the same way. I don’t even buy Comet anymore. I took an empty clean Parmesan cheese container and keep baking soda in it for cleaning. You can use it on your dishes too.

If you have a grease fire on the stove sprinkle baking soda on the fire to put it out. Pouring water on it is a bad idea. It kind of explodes.

Ran out of toothpaste? Sprinkle some baking soda on your toothbrush bristles and brush as usual. It’s a bit salty tasting but not bad.

It also works as a deodorant. Just rub a little under your arms, like you would powder and you will be good to go. The active ingredient in most deodorants is bicarbonate.

You know that bubbly stuff you drink for heartburn and indigestion? Alka Seltzer I believe it is called. The active ingredient is, you guessed it, baking soda. Add half a teaspoon to half a glass of water and drink.

So what do you use baking soda for?

Can't Find A Proper Name

Is it just me or do you have trouble finding good resources online for us regular folks? I mean if I walked around with a puzzled confused look on my face and thought it was a great idea to name my daughter Apple or my son Tarragon I might look for names online. Of course maybe they just got their baby name list and grocery needs mixed up and that is how that happened, I’m not quite sure. But if I am looking for names for a particular character in a story I’m writing and he is a middle age guy who doesn’t sound like a Rabi or Priest even though he might have a penchant for giving advise. Again I am thinking these pregnant ladies have gotten their lists confused.

Where does one look?

Luckily, I have some very old name books from the old days when people named their kids regular ol’ names instead of sitting under a tree waiting for a piece of fruit to give them inspiration. Yes, I know how old fashioned it is to actually turn pages in a book for knowledge but what is a person to do when most everything on line seems geared to the younger generation some of which have obviously taken leave of their senses?

If I were writing a fantasy novel it would be no problem because there are tons of fantastical sounding names that are in my opinion out of this world. Some people go to cemeteries for inspiration but that seems so depressing to me. You could recall names of some of your relatives but my family were kind of creative at times and I am pretty sure some of those names were made up. Perhaps that is a trend that goes in cycles every few decades or so. They tire of the plain ol’ Tom, Dick and Harry and decide on Justice, Peace and Tranquility. While those are fine attributes to strive for I don’t think they are a good choice for junior.

The reason for my dilemma is that I had a dream for a good novel and have decided to do NaNo again this year. Maybe this time I can actually finish. I realize I can’t start now but need to write up a synopsis while it is still fresh in my mind. I wanted to go ahead and give my characters names just so I can tell them apart even though it may change later. I’m kind of fickle that way. The first year I was successful but last year I became stuck and after starting two different story ideas, neither time did I come close to the required word count.

Monday morning I woke at four a.m. with this idea and could not go back to sleep. If it keeps me awake maybe it will do the same for a reader. One can only hope.

July 20, 2009

Hydrogen Peroxide

During these lean times I thought I would share with you a few products that are inexpensive alternatives to more costly brands.

First up is one you should be familiar with: hydrogen peroxide. Aside from being an antiseptic for skinned knees and elbows, there are a few other uses you might not be aware of.

It is in products like Chlorox II, Oxyclean and a few other color-bleach cleaners. You can use it full strength or diluted and save yourself some money.

Many women have had ruined clothes when Aunt Flo came to visit unexpectedly. To get blood out of just about any material use straight hydrogen peroxide with no water and a little soap of any kind on the spot and scrub by hand. Launder as usual.

Clothes that say no chlorine bleach can be treated with peroxide to get many stains out. Just rub a little in before washing. I would dilute it if putting on clothes that are delicate. If you don’t let it set for long and wash right away it should be fine for most fabrics.

Most teeth whitening products have peroxide in them. Drinking tea, colored soda, coffee or smoking can discolor our teeth. Regular cleanings at the dentist doesn’t always take care of this. Swish a little peroxide in your mouth after brushing once or twice a day and you will be pleased with the results.

Not only will you be whitening your teeth but you will also fight gingivitis and a few other gum disease bacteria that live in our mouths. One website said it would also help with receding gums because it heals the damaged tissue and promotes healthy growth.

Hydrogen peroxide hardly has a taste so don’t worry about it being yucky.

I don’t advise swallowing peroxide, however there are people who believe it has internal healing properties. Do your research before ingesting anything of this nature. Personally, I don’t swallow it.

It has to be kept away from direct sunlight that is why it comes in brown bottles so it you decide to pour it into a prettier container or are diluting it in a spray bottle keep this in mind.

Do any of you know a good use for hydrogen peroxide I may have overlooked?

Katatonia- In The White:

July 17, 2009

Hectic Week

My daughter has had babysitting classes at the local college this week. They have several fun things for kids during the summer.

It’s 20 minutes away and instead of coming back home I stayed in town to pass the time until she got out.

Monday I went to the library with my laptop thinking I would do some writing. Ha! The place was crawling with kids who had nothing better to do than hang out causing havoc.

A girl and her little brother sat next to me and she ordered that poor boy to do all sorts of degrading things part of which consisted of going to the bathroom for paper towels to wash her flip flops and then she made him follow her around carrying them. I wanted so badly to say something to the little witch but I held my tongue.

They finally left and two teenage boys took their place talking about me like I was deaf and couldn’t hear them even though they were only a foot and a half away from me. lol

These two must have walked to the library in the 105 degree heat and either their deodorant expired or they forgot to wear any.

Curly haired boy- “She’s lucky she doesn’t have to wait for a computer, she brought her own.”

Short-haired friend- “She got the most comfortable chair too. I wish I had that chair.”

Curly haired boy- “If I had a computer I’d be chatting with _____.”

Short-haired friend- “She is so cute. I can’t believe she is your friend on MySpace.”

Curly haired boy- “Yeah, when I get older I’m going to travel to Canada and visit her. You know you can walk down the road smoking a joint there and nobody cares.”

I’m tried really hard not to laugh. Finally I got up and let them have the “comfy chair”.

Tuesday I went to Panera bread thinking there would be an older crowd that would be quieter. Not so much. There was a group of ladies sitting near me talking loudly about everything from funerals, convalescent homes, a husband-stealing hussy, and ex-husbands. Apparently they all knew this woman that was after everyone’s husband but for some stupid reason they kept inviting her to their homes. ????

The rest of the week I had appointments and errands to run that kept me busy.

Then Thursday afternoon I took my daughter and one of her friends to see Harry Potter. Before the movie started a bad storm came through and knocked the power out. They came in and told us it wasn’t coming back on anytime soon and they would give us all a rain check. It was hailing and pouring rain. A truck and car had a wreck before they even got out of the parking lot.

We were going to go eat somewhere but had trouble finding anyone with power. There was no electricity for miles. We passed downed power lines, trees and several wrecks. I thought we would go to Midwest City and surely find a restaurant open. It wasn’t until we got to the east side of Midwest City that we found anyone with electricity.

Of course the few open places were packed because they got the overflow from the other areas. We finally found a Mexican restaurant open. The lady asked me if we wanted a booth or table and I told her I didn’t care I was just thrilled she had electricity. Over 200,000 customers are without power and there is damage all over. Some was from high winds and some from tornadoes. It was crazy.

A hotel and the place that sold me my car lost their roofs. Jennifer’s college doesn’t have electricity so they canceled her class.

So I still haven’t seen the movie and I’m sitting here feeling fortunate that I have lights and no damage at my house. There is always something to be thankful for.

July 13, 2009

Colored Water and Gnats Up My Nose

My friend Debbie isn’t a fan of water and was thrilled to discover these little packets that flavor and color her bottled water so it tastes good. She carries them around in her purse so she can doctor up that terrible tasting life preserving stuff we are supposed to drink like a gallon a day.

I laughed at her and told her she might as well buy Kool-Aid and save her money. If it has a taste and or color it is no longer water.

What’s not to like about water? This just baffles my mind. It has no taste. I have an aunt that agrees with her. She drinks Mountain Dew by the case, which is full of caffeine because she abhors water. Then she has to drink cranberry juice because all that caffeine and the lack of water gives her a bladder infection. Personally, I’d rather drink water than cranberry juice.

In Roswell I expected to see protesting religious folks but the only ones I saw were a group pulling a kid’s wagon and giving out free bottles of water with Bible scriptures on the side. I thought that was a pretty cool idea but wondered how many people bothered to even read their containers. I read everything but some people don’t even read road signs.

Water is the essence of life.

I googled it to see what the ol’ internet had to say about the amount of water we contain under our skin.

According to Dr. Jeffrey Utz, “Different people have different percentages of their bodies made up of water.

Babies have the most, being born at about 78%. By one year of age, that amount drops to about 65%.

In adult men, about 60% of their bodies are water.

However, fat tissue does not have as much water as lean tissue.

In adult women, fat makes up more of the body than men, so they have about 55% of their bodies made of water. Fat men also have less water (as a percentage) than thin men.”

So go drink some water. It’s cheap and good for you.

Why do gnats want up my nose? Do they think it’s a passageway to some new land of gnats? Do they think it’s a cave? Maybe I should charge them admission and hire a tour guide. I get so tired of swatting at the little varmints. They are getting on my nerves.

The Hidden Messages in Water by Masaru Emoto is a great book. There are wonderful photographs of microscopic particles that are beautiful.


July 10, 2009

What I Did On My Summer Vacation

Remember when you were a kid and the first day of school the teacher always had you write a report about what you did over summer break? That’s what this blog reminds me of.

Not wanting to bore you with a lot of vacation pictures I promise to only show a few of the highlights.


I went to a lot of places in a short period of time and my memory isn’t quite as good as it was in the old days when I had skinned knees and pigtails but I’ll do my best to tell you everything I saw to the best of my ability.

Oddly enough, it was mostly in the upper 80’s overcast and rainy. In the mornings, I had to wear a sweater because it was cold around 54 degrees. Not what I expected to find in the desert. Local people were complaining about how muggy it was. lol It wasn’t anything like Oklahoma humidity and I thought it felt good. Where I live, when it gets humid you can hardly breath.



First stop was Roswell where it is said aliens came to visit a long time a go and just like all foreigners they were relocated to the projects and put on welfare. A few stragglers stayed behind opening businesses and I was fortunate enough to meet a few of them.



We discovered the Bottomless Lake a very cold water hole that is fed by an underground stream and according to the alien at one of the gift shops never gets above 54 degrees. My daughter was tough enough to get in and swim but I’m not quite as brave.


Then we went to Carlsbad Cavern, a deep hole that goes all the way to China. I met a few Chinese families on their way up verifying the depth of that abyss. We saw lots of sticky uppy and hangy downy things. The smell reminded me of my granny’s cellar only without the pile of quilts.


At dusk you can see thousands of bats fly out of that great crevice ready for the all you can eat insect buffet. They look like smoke and in fact that is how they discovered that big hole in the ground many years a go. A cowboy mending fences thought something was on fire and went to check on it and discovered they had a major bat infestation.


The town of Carlsbad also has a rescue zoo with lots of smelly animals and a cute prairie dog village. Also baby turtles have trouble turning them selves over and there is a man who stands by with a stick just to help them back on their feet, which seems like a very boring job. I don’t want to be a turtle up-righter when I grow up.


They grow some really large pistachios in the great state of New Mexico, of course after that bottle of pomegranate wine things might be a little fuzzy. Here I am standing next to one with the grouchy teenager I had the misfortune of traveling with. ~Note to self: next time find a babysitter for the fifteen year old~


We stopped off and looked at the petroglyphs which are drawings letting everyone know that the Indian tribe that used to live here went with the aliens. I guess people have been making graphite since the beginning of time.

Next stop, Ruidoso which white people cannot say correctly. My sister in law told us it was “Ree-a-dosa” which didn’t make phonetic sense to me so I asked a local woman who told me the white people say it that way but the Indians say “Roo-ee-do-so”. That made more sense to me so that’s how I say it. Dang white folks never say anything right.

We did some shopping, found some cool stuff and then we went to a couple of little towns to learn about Smokey the Bear and Billy the Kid. Billy the Kid was a really bad guy who robbed banks until Smokey the Bear put him in jail but those little “U” hooks in the wood floor weren’t strong enough to hold a hardened criminal so he got loose and killed some people. Then, some other guy killed him.

When old Smokey the Bear died he was such a celebrity they had to sneak him in at three o clock in the morning to bury him because they were afraid someone would steal his body. I can’t imagine why anyone would want an old dead bear.

There’s a round adobe building in Capitan village that the locals would get in when the aliens came. Or was it the Apache?


I think that about covers it.

Disclaimer- I wouldn’t take this as an exact lesson in history. Just so you’ll know.