Thursday, September 26, 2013

Creepy Dreams

I have a tendency to talk in my sleep and on occasion, I've been known to get up and wander.  It's not something that happens a lot in adults- most folks outgrow the childhood tendencies.  Lucky me.

Last night as I was laying in bed, the oddest thing happened.  I fell asleep without noticing it, which normally wouldn't be a problem.  However, in my dream-awake state, as I was laying in bed staring at my dresser, I noticed River had snuck in to the bedroom, walked to my side of the bed then snatched a toy that was near my head.  As she turned to flee, her tail slammed in to a nearby lamp and nearly knocked it over.  I screamed "RIVER!" then sat bolt upright in bed, disoriented.  

Did it happen? My eyes darted to the closed bedroom door.  Slowly my faculties returned.  No, she couldn't have gotten out of her kennel, much less have gotten in to the bedroom.  Nevermind there were no dog toys in bed with me.

A new thought occurred.  Did I really scream her name out loud?  Oh geez, not again, Tim loves to catch me sleep talking, the more outrageous it is, the more fun he has.

I paused, waiting.  When he didn't comment, I began to relax. I slowly scooted back down under the covers.


The bed shakes and I feel the familiar weight of Toby, the needy cat, laying across my leg.  With a gasp, I sit bolt upright again.

I had been fooled again.  Apparently I slipped back in to sleep nearly instantly, though my brain still thought I was looking down towards the foot of the bed, getting comfortable and preparing for sleep.  There was no Toby, though my brain clearly told me he had been laying on me.  I felt the bed bounce when he landed on it, I heard the slight creak of the springs.

I sat for a moment, gathering my thoughts.  Finally, I settled myself in and tightly shut my eyes- then shut my eyes again. 

Though I had some strange dreams, I managed to keep them from bleeding over in to real life.   *whew*


Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Churro Cupcakes

Yes, I'm a rebel- those are Halloween cupcake liners and it's only September

Churro Cupcakes (from here!)

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil (I used canola oil)
  • 1/2 cup milk
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium bowl combine the flour, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt. Set the mixture aside.
  2. In a large bown cream together the butter and sugar until it's light and fluffy. Then add the eggs one at a time. After this is combined add the oil and vanilla.
  3. Add 1/3 of the flour mixture to the butter mixture, and stir lightly. Then add half of the milk, again mixing lightly. Continue these steps with another 1/3 of the flour, remainder of the milk, then the last 1/3 of the flour mixture. Mix it until just combined, careful not to overmix.
  4. Pour the batter into a lined cupcake pan, only filling each only half way. According to the recipe, these won't form a nice dome on top when baked so you don't want to fill them 2/3 of the way like usual.
  5. Bake for 14 to 16 minutes for regular sized cupcakes and let cool completely before frosting. 

  6. *I sometimes mix up some white granulated sugar and cinnamon, then dip the top of each cupcake (while hot, before icing is applied) to the mixture.  It gives them a nice crisp crunch :).
    I mix up a vanilla icing with cinnamon in it- yum yum yum. 

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Make Your Own Cream of Chicken Soup

Make your own Cream of Chicken Soup:

Ingredients (makes approximately 4 "cans" of soup)-
1 cup of non-fat dried milk
3/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup chicken bullion (not cubes)
4 Tbsp. freeze dried minced onion
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried thyme

Mix all your ingredients together.
Store in an air tight container.

To Use:
For 1 can of cream of chicken soup, mix 1 1/4 cups of warm water with 1/3 cup of the dry soup mix.  Heat over medium heat until it reaches the correct consistency.

Easy Peasey! I typically stock up during the Thanksgiving season (when they go deep discount or loss leader prices) and get enough to last a year, but I might try this instead.


Monday, September 16, 2013

It's Been A While

I have spent the past five days filling in at my old job. 

While the paycheck and change to my new routine was welcome, I am definitely looking forward to sleeping in late tomorrow.

This past weekend, I sold five of the six baby guinea pigs I crocheted.  That paid for a chunk of yarn I purchased to make even MORE dish cloths.  They don't sell as well, but are useful and make great gifts. Plus, I just plain enjoy doing them and that is what it is all about anyway.

I have a Thirty One Party this weekend! I am excited, I'll probably spend some time tomorrow preparing everything so I don't leave it until the last minute. I say that now- I'll probably really wait until Friday.  That's how I roll.  Wish me luck! The last party was a $1200 affair which led to an excellent payday for me and a ton of free stuff for my hostess- I'd love to have a repeat.

We are preparing to head up to Pennsylvania- I can't wait! On the docket are trips up to Gettysburg (150th anniversary!) and some caverns- and of course, we have to spend a few minutes playing around Chocolate World! It will be nice to get away for a bit, though this is mixing business with pleasure, as I am attending the ARBA Convention. 


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Let's Start Wrapping This Up (12 Days of Christmas Post)

It's September now- we've talked about making gift baskets and making canned or dehydrated  food.   We've shopped the clearance, made lists of gifts in jars, gleaned nature during our vacations and now you tell me "But I'm not really that crafty- not enough to make someone's gift."

Way to wait until August to tell me this.

The truth is, you don't have to be that crafty.  In the modern age of pinterest, youtube and the wonderful google, you can find dummy-proof step-by-step instructions on how to do pretty much anything.

However, let's say you prefer to buy your gifts.  Nothing wrong with that as long as you watch to catch the sales, keep your budget in mind and don't wait until the last minute.

There is still savings to be had here.

Consider, if you have children, giving them cheap brown parcel paper and allowing them to draw the decorations on the wrapping!  You can do the same with brown paper bags or even computer paper for small gifts.  Trust me- this is one that grandparents will squee over.

A simple candy cane or a cheap $1 ornament attached to a plain package dresses up a gift more than that $5 a roll foil paper.

Save the colored funny papers from those Sunday newspapers you get anyway.  It's an "old school" way to wrap that costs you no additional money. Some folks use sales ads or suggest wrapping sports gifts in the Sports pages.  Do it how you want :).

Save gift bags when given to you and reuse them later. 

Buy paper, Christmas cards, tissue paper and gift bags when stores mark their items down to half off or more.  Even if you only get one roll, one bag of bows, etc. during the sales, you are still saving money.


Catch up on all the 12 Months of Christmas posts here.