Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Old Paper Fans

The other day Freddie and I ate lunch at a local restaurant that is decorated in antiques and various old fashion things. Many of the things are reproduction but they still hold a lot of memories for the people our age or older.
One thing they had was a basket of cardboard fans that you could take for free. Oh, what memories that "triggered!" You know the type of fan I am talking about--the cardboard is stapled to a piece of wood (reminds me of a tongue depresser) and most would be advertising some business. The ones that I recall growing up usually advertised some church or a funeral home.
Our little church would have the fans placed on all of the pews and everyone used them to try a create a breeze while the preacher gave his sermon--poor guy would be sweating up a storm, since he couldn't use a fan.
I guess that the little things of long ago makes as big of a impression on us as the big things..The fans are cute and I have bought several through the years at antique stores to display in our home but I sure have no desire to use one again---this air conditioning suits me just fine!!!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010


Folks, it is amazing the silly things that you find yourself doing in your old age--I am not THAT old but sure as heck not as young as I use to be.. I have FINALLY joined the rest of this "high tech" world and got myself a facebook page..said that I was not going to do it as I had too many other things to do--even thought that it was sort of silly to do such a thing, if you wanted to keep up with someone just call them. Then there is the "thing" about long lost friends or family finding you on facebook--well there may be a reason that you have not kept in touch, huh?
Of course, I was clueless about even setting up the page but my hubby was glad to do it for me..I really have a hang-up about having my picture taken so there are not all that many around here--he said that it wasn't necessary that I have one for my page but I did not pay much attention to him, heck , he has a cow for his photo. I considered a photo of one of my quilts but could just hear some wise crack about me "going to pieces". FINALLY, found one with my mouth closed--harder to do than you may think. Freddie thought it was pretty funny that I seem to be talking in most of the photo's.
Every time I get a notification that so & so wants be my friend, I think to myself "I thought we already were and have been for 40 years!'
Most all of my family have their own page and it will be nice to keep up with them on a daily basis--
I am right pleased with myself, I have now joined the facebook crowd and I learned to text this year (takes me forever but it gets done)-- if I can only learn how to work the 5 controls that operates our t.v. I will be in "high cotton!"

Sunday, August 1, 2010

We have the Plum Jelly!

I just had to let you know that the wild plum jelly is a "done deal" as of today. Before my sweet hubby left out this morning he asked for a couple of sacks and told me he was going to pick some wild plums--I would say for me but I am postive it was for a certain little 9 year boy that loves the jelly. I questioned him about taking something to cut the grass and weeds back where he could see what he MAY be stepping on---he rejects that thought and tells me that he planned on driving his four wheeler as close to the plum thicket as he could--hopefully to avoid the chiggers. He sprays repellent on himself and off he goes.. A man on a mission..
It was early but the day was already HOT. He was gone so long I began to worry---not at all unusual for me...worry is my middle name. I was "fretting" over the snakes that would seek out the shade of the plum bushes--I thought of him getting over-heated and having a heart attack, oh the list goes on and on--
All of my anxiety was for naught--thankfully--he returned with the wonderful fruit -- he had gotten overheated, and in spite of spraying with repellent and driving up close to the thicket he is COVERED with chiggers and as for the snakes, I just know that they were there but it was obviously way to hot for them to bother with the poor ole soul picking the plums.
We rush to town and buy the Sure-Jel, sugar and some canning jars. Now it is my turn to finish our jelly making venture. I got them all washed, boiled,drained off the juice and began the jelly making process...
Tonight our house smells like "yummy" wild plum jelly, the pretty red jelly is cooling in the jars and sounding like 4th of July fireworks when the lids make the load "POP"--letting me know that they are sealing.
I suppose that I will have to make homemade bicuits for us to sample the "fruit of our labor" on.. We will have to get Cade over here first, after all he was our inspiration for this little "hoop-la".

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Canning Corn

After talking about the plum jelly, I got to thinking about the time that Mom showed me how to can corn. Now, I will confess right up front that canning corn really was not at the top of my list of things to do---I like Del Monte corn just fine. Freddie and I had been married for 5 or 6 months and Mom came out to stay the day with me,which was great--she opens the trunk of her car and it looked like someone had dumped a trailer full of corn on the cob in the trunk--she was so happy to be the bearer of this mother load of corn!! I asked her what on earth would we do with that much corn--she looked at me like I was a mite narrow between the eyes and says "Well, can it of course!" Silly me --17 years old I should have known..
Well. we get a big wash tub --put it under neath a mesquite tree by the house--add a couple of chairs for us and some big bowls to place the corn in, We shucked the corn first (peeling off the husk)--Now came the fun part--(I lie a little) she showed me how to hold the big butcher knife--resembling a small machete in my opinion and we cut the corn very close to the cob. Started at the top of the cob and brought the knife down to the bottom. She then told me to flip the sharp side of the knife upward and run the backside of the knife over the cob to extract the sweet juice from the corn, This may sound very simple but let me tell you for certain that it turned out to be a back breaker, when you handling enough corn to supply H.E.B.
FINALLY. the last ear was finished and we go to the kitchen to finish up this "simple" canning of the corn. We boil it for a short period then pour it into canning jars and seal them.
When Mom cooked her canned corn she would add butter-salt-pepper and cook it in a skillet, sort of frying it...Good doesn't describe it but what can I say except that she could make ANYTHING taste great... Just give the woman some flour, shortening, milk and eggs and she could create heaven.
We enjoyed visiting while we worked and she taught me how to do yet another homemaking skill---she thought my husband should have a wife that could put vegetables away in this manner...Yep, that is a biggie for you soon to brides!!
I don't recall how long it took us eat all of that corn--which was very good and made me feel like quiet the little wife! Guess that I am glad to know how Mom processed her corn but to be perfectly honest, I have never done it again..I just shuck the corn -blanch it--bag it and throw those little suckers in the freezer..

Friday, July 30, 2010

Plum Jelly

You know for sure that you need a little excitement in your life when your son tells you that he "spotted" some wild plums beside one of our local roads and you feel the thrill of hitting a jackpot! Yep, we REALLY do love wild plum jelly but most years we are not fortunate enough to have the yield of plums.
There are several factors that are to be considered and to rationalize if the jelly would be worth the bother. First of all the price of sugar, canning jars etc, will more than likely amount to twice the price of ready made jelly-- with the temperature hitting the 100 degree mark, even with air conditioning--standing over the boiling jelly and stirring it until it is the right consistency will not be the most fun of the day.
Oh, did I mention that to get to the plum thickets you have to cross through grass and weeds about chest high.. I just know without a doubt that there are chiggers as big as ladybugs and snakes that are just waiting for some fool to try and take the plums that they are coiled up beneath. It is enough to make a sane person decide that the Walmart jelly is a good deal and so what if it is tasteless--just eat it fast and you will never notice.
Like I said a sane person would make the obvious right decision--BUT what the heck, I need the the excitement and suspense of the unknown awaiting in the weeds for who ever dares to go, I love the sweet tantalizing smell that cooking jelly spreads throughout the house---better than any candle you could buy. I even enjoy hearing the lids pop as the hot jelly is cooling in the jars--the pop is letting you know that the jar is sealed.. Many of you know by now I must enjoy making jelly because nothing compares to homemade and doing it in the "old way" just makes it better. Oh, did I mention that our precious grandson JUST LOVES it?? Yep, you know the real reason now why Pappa will wade through the weeds and fight with the snakes to get the plums and his Meme will standing stirring the hot liquid with sweat rolling down my sides to get this red wonderful jelly ready to pour into the jars.. In a few months on a blustry cold morning I will make Pappa and the precious young boy some hot biscuits and they can enjoy this delicious sweet/tart jelly..Gotta remember that nothing this good is ever easy!!!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Legs Hurting?? Here is your Cure

Months ago I shared with you some of the "good old days" prescribed treatment of various ailments, I have a couple more that I MUST share with you. Now, don't start rolling your eyes and groaning "Oh- please no more"!! You have to remember that people did not have the luxury of running to the Dr. if they had the sniffles etc. etc. as we do today. What they did have was the various treatments that had been passed down for generations--probably some worked but who knows?? I think that it is interesting to know what they practiced in curing various things though--
My sister and I were talking about our legs hurting at night and that we thought of Mom as she suffered the same thing. Someone told Mom many years ago that if she filled a cast iron skillet with "something" and put it underneath her bed -( neither of us remember what the something was)--that her legs wouldn't hurt. We were very curious about that "something" that you put beneath your bed, so a call was placed to our cousin that is well acquainted with the old ways. She was no help in solving our mystery, but offered a solution for charlie horse leg cramps that she vows will work.
Are you paying REAL close attention--here goes---you put a bar of soap in the bed with you and if by chance you get a charlie horse cramp, you rub the bar of soap on your leg and it will cure the charlie horse.
A friend was visiting the cousin and said that she had always been told for leg pain of any kind that you put your shoes underneath the bed --and be sure that you get this part right--you turn them up side down!
As strange as some these seem I do know a couple of of the old treatments that Mom did use on all of us and by gosh, they worked! If we had a sore throat we drank sour pickle juice--VIOLA--no more sore throat.. For a cough we "enjoyed" a shot of whiskey with honey--I don't remember if I still coughed but I sure did like the cough syrup!
Heck, why be out a lot of money going to these high priced Doctors today when you can just throw a bar of soap in your bed, turn your shoes upside down and slide them under the bed -- takes a shot of whiskey and honey, oh what the heck- better takes a couple of shots to be safe and if it doesn't cure us at least we will smell clean, have our shoes real handy and be feeling pretty happy to boot!!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Mom and Dads Anniversary

I have shared with you some of stories about Mom and Dad that I enjoy thinking about---as you know it is not possible to relate to someone else EVERYTHING about a person.. Those of you that knew them will understand very well that it is impossible to describe their personality or at least I can not do it.
Today July 21 is their wedding anniversary --They shared many years of love, laughter,high times and low times--through it all they remained devoted to each other. Rest assured that raising six children really put them to the test many times, but they managed just fine..At least I think that we all "turned out" pretty good!
I only wanted to post a short note honoring their many years of marriage--how blessed we were the day they were united in marriage and began their "walk" together.
The memories of spending the cold winter nights around the wood stove and sharing our thoughts with one another, listening to them sing together, Dad playing his harmonica, Mom with all of her pranks, the delicious meals she prepared for all of us and always there to cheer anyone up..dealing with 6 children there were many times one would expect her to throw a "hissy fit" over some of the things we did but she always found laughter quicker then she did anger.
Yep, saying that we were blessed to have been their "off springs"
Is putting it mild!!!