Friday, June 29, 2007

Hot day...etc.

It was HOT! out today! sheew.

Had to go to the bank, the post office and to the store to get some eggs, bread, milk and t.p. and paper towels today..and wowzers was it hot..94 out there..that was after the van first measured an interior temp of 101 when we cranked it up..then once we got going it measured 94 degrees.

Anyhow..I got all my errands ran and then this evening hubby and I went back up to Walmart..while he went to the electronics department I stayed in the garden mom in law had sent me a gift card back during Mother's Day and I had not been to Walmart since then to use I decided that I'd like to get myself some shrub type plants for out front of the house and a pair of garden gloves.

So..I found 3 large plants called... Thryallis...

they are very pretty plants that bloom these little yellow flowers.

(I am a sucker for a plant that blooms cheery yellow it grabbed my attention straight away..and into the cart it went) Of course I had never grown that type of plant did my research online this evening too.

Dear daughter and I worked outside this about 7:30 until 8:30 weeding and trimming in the front flowerbeds along the sidewalk and driveway area of our home, and even though it was was still hot. But we got a fair amount accomplished.

It will take us a few more days to get the rest of the weeds pulled and things trimmed up into shape..then we shall lay down a layer of fresh mulch. The new plants will go along the front walkway as well.

When it is completed it will look very nice I am sure.

Then we'll start tackling the backyard...we have a large courtyard area that has an outdoor dining area, arbour, and a large oak tree..after I get things back there whipped back into shape and the new flowerbed that I plan to get created back there..I will have to share photos. Right now though the weeds are threatening to take over in some areas and I need to get things remulched..then I'll be more than happy to share photos once I get things back into shape.:0)

Our summer vacation has only another month left to it..hard to believe that the days just sometimes go by in a whirl...

I'll have to sit down soon and plan out a little bit of the things that we will want to learn about this year.

I like to sit with the children during the summertime and ask them what topics they'd like to learn about in the upcoming school year. Then we make a list and try to incorporate as many of the topics as we can that they have expressed an interest in.

I do tend to use a little bit of a curriculum sometimes...but that is mostly in the math department..and then I'll use some worksheets that I find off of the internet..the other things I am pretty flexible with..but math is not one of my strong points so I usually need something a bit structured in that area.

With the younger years..I have found that the children have enjoyed the Hewitt Homeschooling Resources is sort of along the lines of a Unit Study approach, and uses a few Bible scriptures and character building lessons. I found that back when my daughter was little..she really enjoyed I saved all of the books I had from wayyyy back then...and will use them with my son.

But of course again..we are not rigid in our approach to things..and after 10 yrs of schooling we have become alot more relaxed in our approach..yet we get the learning in..but allow for alot more flexibility.

Well, the 4th of July holiday is coming up...I haven't really planned anything..we usually can see the fireworks from the Airforce Base show that is held every year..from our backyard..and usually can see the fireworks that are held downtown at the marina..from our backyard we sometimes just stand outside and watch beats fighting all of the crowds and traffic and makes it much more enjoyable.

We may do a little picnic out in the backyard that day though..that sounds like fun.:0) ...(even if it's just peanut butter and jelly sandwiches..ha.) Being together is what it's all about.:0)

Well...I'll be clearing out some things here soon and offering them here on the blog as little "auction items" that you all can bid on if you'd like to...some vintage things and what nots that I really need to start clearing out around my house.

I hope that you all have a blessed evening and a wonderful weekend.

~The Garden Goose~

Thursday, June 28, 2007

An evening in my yard...

Just wanted to share some photos from an evening in my yard. Hope you enjoy them.Hope you all have had a good day today and a pleasant evening. (see the curl on the male ducks tail feathers now?..doesn't he look handsome? they make quite a pair now..Daffy and Daisy.)

~The Garden Goose~

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

CRASH! aggghhh....etc.

Oh my while my husband was in the middle of doing a job for a client all the sudden we start hearing a high pitched whine and the computer pops up with the dreaded blue screen of ...(gulp)...death.!! Argghh...AGGGGH.
My husband had alot of graphics work and some family photos of the children on the computer as well.
Amazingly he was very calm..while I..yes..I cried.Because I knew how important all the work that he has done for clients and jobs he has designed is on that computer..important things that have taken him hours upon hours to do for graphics work. He'd just bought the computer several months ago. EEEK. Anyhow..he was able to get it back up for a few minutes and was able to retrieve the photos of the kids and a few other things that he needed off of there and is still grabbing what he can off of the computer while it is able to be on.
We had never had the dreaded "blue screen of death" on a computer before.He has maintained a steady calm about the whole thing today while me..I had a case of the cries about it. (guess us women are just more emotional or something)
Gracious..I guess we do tend to rely on computers a whole lot for storing files and images, etc.
Big lesson learned today..I will make certain that I start backing up all of my images and important things on my computer as well.
Tonight's dinner was another one of those "flash in the pan" things..actually a "flash in the casserole pan"..Bruschetta Chicken...basically you just take prepared chicken breasts or strips, a pkg. of stuffing mix, about a cup of water...either marinara sauce or if you wish..a can of chopped tomatoes(reduce water amount and just use liquid from tomatoes) can add mixed veggies if you wish..then top with a bit of shredded Italian style cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

Very easy.
Rain again this morning..yay! It is nice to finally get rain that we have needed for months..I think it is finally catching up and my dry lawn is finally a nice pleasant green.
I made 2 loaves of sourdough bread today..yummy, yummy.

It was good to make a little sandwich with pastrami and sliced white cheddar cheese accompanied by a handfull of grapes for lunch today.Nothing like fresh homemade bread...and my house smelled wonderful too.
Well, I have to head outdoors this evening to take care of my little quackers. ..and the plants/flowers in the yard.
May you all have a lovely evening.
~The Garden Goose~

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

And the winner is!.....etc.

The winner of the "ooh La-La Handbag" is......

(drumroll please)......Mikki Jo!

Your items are on the way to you.

I hope that you will enjoy them.It was alot of fun having this little drawing and I indeed will have more of them in the future.Thanks to everyone that joined in on the fun!


Yesterday afternoon we had rain, but it wasn't just "any" type of was my most favorite type of rain..and that is the kind where the sun is still shining very brightly and it is a light drizzle, no lightening, but a tad of thunder way off in the distance...
and the fun thing about this nice summer rain is that in various parts of the yard it was raining at different rates, while the front yard was virtually dry..different areas of the backyard were getting varying amounts of drizzly rain.
It was alot of fun to watch, as I remember rain like that from when I was a little girl.
One could walk out the front door and be dry, and go to the backyard and it would be raining. Now that is my most favorite way of viewing the rain.
Just something about it that puts a smile on my face.

I didn't see a rainbow though this time, but I'm sure there must have been one the sun was bright.
We recieved rain again this afternoon. I went with my husband to a dr's appt. (sinus infection) Then stopped at the post office to mail a few packages, then back out to the store to get the prescription for hubby filled.
I'm in 4 swaps over at Mary Jane's Farm website.

One is for Independence found some really cute vintage look postcard photos online and printed them out onto cardstock..put red ribbon hangers on the back and edged the cards with a beige crochet lace.They have turned out really pretty. I just hope that my swap partner likes them too.

---but there is an idea for a decoration for the Holiday...all you need is a printer and some glue, ribbon and lace and some card stock.You can visit and they have a few examples of vintage postcards that you can right click on to save to your computer and print out for your decorations. Very cute designs. Have fun!
Around here we have all been trying to eat more fruits and veggies.
Plums are available at the grocers right now and yummy. I like them chilled. So good to bite into a juicy plum and the juice just about rolls down your chin..yum.
I also bought a fresh papaya..those were on sale and since I had never tried one fresh, I thought it was about time to get a bit adventurous.It is in the refrigerator and I intend to cut it up in a day or so and find out what it tastes like fresh.

Of course I stocked up on alot of other fruits and veggies too, like bananas and apples, spinach and carrots(my husband has started juicing some of these ingredients together) But we are trying to start steering clear of the sugary is a challenge..but little by little hopefully we can get away from alot of the sugary stuff and get back into healthier choices.
I wanted to say a warm "Welcome" to all of the new visitors to my! What a nice treat to have new friends visiting with me.
Thank you, and I hope that you all will visit often.
Oh, I noticed this morning that.... male duck has those darling curly tail feathers..finally. They are so cute too. He has about 3 tiny curled up feathers right on the edge of the start of his tail feathers.I had been waiting to finally see those as he is behind the female in his growth by about 3 weeks on his full feather development.So it is nice to see him finally fully feathered out in all of his Daffy the Duck splendor....ha
I woke up this morning to loud quacks outside, so stuck my head out the door and I guess the ducks just wanted to see me..after a while they quieted down..they had fresh food and water..but the female had set up a loud din just quacking away, and would calm down once she heard my voice..after a while even once I stuck my head back inside she still carried on for a little bit but soon quieted. I thought perhaps there was a hawk overhead or something, but no..that wasn't the case. Then I thought..well, maybe she has laid an egg...
She was just acting spoilt.... ha.
I started up a thing try and meet Stay at home mom's in my area. I haven't any friends here to speak of, and since I am a stay at home mom..I thought.well..why not try to start a Stay at home mom's meet up where a few moms can get together and meet at a local park with our kids..anyhow..we'll see how that goes.Doesn't hurt to try...and maybe I'll make some decent friends along the way.
Well, I'm off now to give my son a haircut. His hair grows really fast and gets top heavy and curly on the it needs a good thinning.(I'm the resident barber here..ha)
His ear is healing up nicely now..thank goodness..and we'll have a follow up appt. next week.
So glad that we got on the right track with that.
I'll be posting a new Homeschool theme activity/ideas stay tuned.
May you all have a very nice evening.
Thanks for joining me in "blogland"
~The Garden Goose~

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Chili Nachos....and etc.

Was asked if I'd share the recipe for the chili is really, really very easy.

Chili Nachos


1 can chili starter beans

1 large can baked beans in flavor of choice

1 can chopped tomatoes(mexican style with chiles)

Salsa of choice

Sour cream

Tortilla chips of choice

Shredded cheddar cheese


Prepare chili starter mix, add the tomatoes and baked beans, heat through.

Layer a portion of chips onto plate. Spoon the chili over the top.

Layer with cheese.Top with salsa then a dollop of sour cream.

For an even heartier meal, you can add browned ground beef to your chili. Then when layering your nachos, add shredded lettuce and bean sprouts to the mix.

We have served it both the vegetarian way, and with the added meat and bean sprouts as well. Both versions are yummy.


Have fun with the recipe to adapt it to fit your tastes. You can even add guacamole if you wish.

It's very easy, very fast and not a whole lot of sweating over the stove.

Will be doing the drawing real soon for the little handbag and some other surprise tuck ins. If you haven't signed up for the drawing..there are still a few days left. Drawing on Monday night. Winner to be announced Tuesday morning.
So sign up under the post with the handbag image if you want to join in on the fun.
Went to Joanne's Fabrics yesterday with my daughter..and found some nice fabrics (half off the clearance fabrics/then a $5 off coupon for purchases over $35) So I found some nice fabrics to make skirts out of, and found a nice Butterick pattern for 99 cents. (thanks Jewels for reminding us about the sale.)
So, I now have enough fabric to make about 4 skirts.
I usually wear denim skirts everywhere, the kind with the cargo pocket on the sides..but have wanted to have a few that were just light and airy too for a change, a bit more feminine printed. So I found some nice floral prints...that will look good with solid color tops.
I did see a darling embroidered linen in a bright lime green color(sort of a cottage chic style look) with delicate pink flowers embroidered all over it and a matching pink fabric with flowers embroidered on it that would make the most beautiful two tiered skirt if done properly. ..but..I passed it up. Maybe next time they have a sale..I'll snag it and try to figure out how to create the skirt I can picture in my mind. (of course now that my daughter is a better seamstress than I am..she will be helping mom out with the skirts and so forth....(thanks Naomi :0)...I guess we'll have to bargain for more trips to Joanne's huh? ..she's a fabric junkie and is addicted to Joanne's so I'm sure we'll work out some negotiations for her helping me with my skirt projects..ha)
Here's wishing you all a very lovely day.
May you enjoy spending time with your families on this lovely Sunday afternoon.
Thanks for visiting with me in "blog land"
~The Garden Goose~

Friday, June 22, 2007

Whimsical whatnot...

Had mentioned a while back that I was creating a little decorative birdhouse with a branch that had paper mache' birds on it. Well, I finally got it completed today.

I think it turned out really cute. I listed it in my etsy shop. It was actually a bit time consuming to do, but it turned out nicely. has been very hot here today.
And nope..I didn't work in the yard with the mulch at all. We acquired a pallet full of mulch(75 big bags full) to redo our flower beds, but it was just too hot today to tackle that.
I will start tackling that chore in the evening times .
All in all today has been a really nice day.
Hubby took the day off and has been catching up with orders on his sign business work.
He had an order for 10 banners to do. So the printer that does full color work has been busy humming away in the office area of the house today.
I had to make a run to the store today..for milk and bread and a few other necessities..and while there I snooped around at the pretty notecards and decided to treat myself to a few packs of notecards to get back into my snail mail writings.
I have a pot of chili going on the stove to make chili nachos for dinner tonight.
Nothing fancy at all. Simple and easy.
Here's a really simple recipe I wanted to share with you all.
Banana Nut Bread Pancakes/Waffles
3 cups pancake mix of choice
1 cup fresh sunflower seeds or roasted unsalted sunflower seeds
2 ripe sliced bananas
Mix up batter as you would normally for your pancakes/or as for waffles
Add the sunflowers and gently stir in the banana slices.
Prepare as usual.
Top with real maple syrup.
oooh yummy!
----------- can you tell what I had for breakfast? ..ha
Well, here's wishing you all a lovely evening!
~The Garden Goose~

Thursday, June 21, 2007

I've Been Tagged...Southern Style...

I've been tagged by Sue over at "Country Pleasures" to participate in a Southern Tag..listing all the things I can think of that remind me of the "South" here goes....

Sweet Tea
Orange Blossoms
boiled peanuts
Seminoles(both the ball team and the tribes)
Gators(ball team and the real McCoy)
Mud Boggin'
Spanish Moss
Oak trees
Plantation style houses
Porch swing
Tire swing
Blackberry Pickin'
Hot weather
Cool water
Sun hats
bathing suits
tea with lemon
watermelon slices
strawberry pickin'
pea pickin'
tea in a mason jar
no see um's
cattle ranch
horse ranch
southern twang
Palm trees
flat land
O.k. I think I listed quite a few things..ha..I wasn't told there was a anyhow..there ya go..things that remind me of the "South"

O.k...I'm going to be thinking of who I can "tag" next. Watch out! ha. (I have tagged madrekarin,Nancy-Jo, and all know who you are..I hope you'll play along)

~The Garden Goose~

Homeschooling topics/website helps....All about "Butterflies!"

Since I am a homeschooling mom that has often times used the "Unit Study" approach to home school my children...I have collected numerous, numerous informational websites on tons of subjects over the course of my 10 yrs of home educating my children.

I felt that since such was the case..that perhaps I just might have something worthy of sharing with other parents wishing to add a new topic of exploration to their home school day/week/month. I thought we'd address the topic of Butterflies!

About 2 yrs ago my oldest daughter became extremely interested in butterflies/entomology and all things "buggy"... after a visit with her grandparents to the University of Florida's Butterfly Rain forest display in Gainesville, at the Florida Museum of Natural History.

While she was away..I took it upon myself to try and find a person located in Florida that was knowledgeable in the raising of native butterfly species, and also would have several varieties of butterfly caterpillars/pupae available for purchase...and could tell me about how to keep the butterflies and caterpillars alive and healthy.

When my daughter arrived back home, we set about ordering a large 4 ft by 4ft screened enclosure off of eBay..the type used as reptile cages to hold iguanas and such.

And we started communications via email with the woman that I had found that had the butterfly caterpillars and pupae available.

We learned that butterflies need a high rate of humidity to keep the pupae healthy.
So we purchased a thermometer that tracks humidity.(available at Walmart)

We also purchased a number of host plants to go inside of the "home made rain forest" that we set up by our back french doors.

We also kept a spritz bottle handy.

Soon thereafter, after setting up our cage, putting newspapers on the bottom of the cage under our host plants.(pentas, parsley,various herbs and other nectar rich flowers)Affixing a feeder area (a small saucer affixed with wire) to a tall piece of driftwood that would serve as our chrysalis hanger.
We ordered our caterpillars and chrysalises.The fun was about to begin!

All summer long we had a wonderful, wonderful experience of watching the caterpillars munch away, then crawling to an area on the cage..sometimes the roof of the cage, sometimes the piece of driftwood we had set up in the cage.

The caterpillars would hang in an "S" shape and then in a matter of a few hours..have developed into a chrysalis.

Then once into chrysalis form... We'd have to make sure that the humidity was maintained at about 75 percent. The chrysalises would get a tiny mist of water twice a day, as would all of the plants in the screen room.

Depending upon the variety of butterfly..some of this went on for anywhere from 14-21 days.

Then hatch out time!

We learned the ways to be able to properly hold a monarch butterfly as well as other varieties of butterflies. And the proper feeding solution for them.

We discovered that yes, butterflies enjoy bananas, but that if the bananas become too ripe, butterflies can get "drunk".... yes, we saw it happen... the poor butterflies would lean sideways a bit and sometimes fall over and have to be rescued or they could die.

We also discovered that they adore a solution made from Gatorade.

Some of the specimens we released... and yes, some of them we kept to mount in shadow frames after they had lived a very full life enjoying plenty of Gatorade solution and host plants.

It was a very rewarding experience that we as a family all enjoyed.
And one that we certainly will be trying again.

In fact we make a point to make sure that alot of the plants/flowers we grow in our yard are both bird and butterfly attractors. Currently we have several passion flower vines that are host to the native Gulf Fritillary..we expect to see those in the next month or so..laying their eggs on the vines.Plus we planted a wildflower garden last October in the yard that has lots of bee and butterfly attracting plants in it...plenty of nectar sources for our "flying flower" friends.

I am sharing with you plenty of websites that can help you and your children to learn about the wonderful world of BUTTERFLIES! ....and maybe you'll want to enjoy an adventure like we did.Enjoy!
where you can buy butterflies from folks that raise them:
lots of info:
differences between butterflies and moths:
butterflies and their host plants:
butterflies and their larva:
Butterflies of North America/a comprehensive list of species with photos:
a unit study that includes anatomy on butterflies,where to find children's books, etc.(and also tells how to pin a butterfly for display):
planning a butterfly garden/host plants:
~The Garden Goose~

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Words to remember..

Found this bit of inspiration recently..and thought I'd share it with you all.

Words to Remember:(with words to forget in parenthesis next to it)
Love (hate)
I Can ( I can't)
I will (I'll try)
I want to (I have to)
Will do (should have)
my goal (could have)
Today (someday)
next time (if only)
I understand (yes, but...)
Oppurtunity (problem)

challenging (difficult)

motivated (stressed)

interested (worried)

possible (impossible)


Have a wonderful day! ~The Garden Goose~

Monday, June 18, 2007

"Girlfriends on The Go- Drawing"...

I am having a drawing !!
This afternoon I decided that I'd like to have a drawing for a "girlfriends on the go" handbag. I will also add some little tuck ins into the gift as well.(no special occasion/just something I wanted to do.."just cause")

If you'd like to participate simply leave a comment to this post and you will be added into the drawing to be held next Monday. I will post the winner's name on Tuesday of next week.

(The handbag in this drawing will have a black colored handle though.)
I'll be adding a few fun tuck ins to make it worth your while.
My way of saying thanks for visiting with me and for being a friend.
Today was ..well..rather uneventful...I did work a wee teeny tiny bit on a project for my etsy shop..I'm creating a really cute retro decorated birdhouse..with a little paper wrapped tree branch that will have little blue birds on it with flowers taken from the patterning on the birdhouse design papers. Really cute and whimsical, but the paper mache birds have to dry for a while before I can complete my project.
--- We had alot of rain today. ..again..but we need it here. We have had several months without any rain, so to get rain for several days in a row definitely has been a blessing.
---- For dinner this evening we had quite a few leftovers..didn't feel like it would be practical or necessary to pitch it, and it was all mostly from the night before, so I just made dijon style breaded pork loins then added the left over moussaka and some baked beans and sweet potatoes to the side..what an odd combination huh? but no one complained. all of the leftovers in the fridge are gone now..ha.Waste not/want not. We put the saying to use.
---I'm wanting to purchase some mulch..alright a bunch of mulch..we are talking about 80-85 redo our flower beds in the yard.
We'll have to definitely work in the evenings though on a project like that, but it has been at least 3-4 yrs since we have replaced the mulch and the flower beds are really looking ..well..shabby if I say so a nice new layer of mulch will do wonders for it soon.
We'll have to arrange for our lawn service to help pick it up and deliver it as they have a large trailer behind their truck.
But that is one of the projects I want to get accomplished this summer.
I also am wanting to get my son's bedroom painted this summer too.
I already have the paint but just haven't had the motivation to tackle it yet as I'm the one that does all the paint work in the house.
And it just hasn't been my most looked forward to project, but it needs doing.
Wish I had a girlfriend to call to help out, but girlfriends here.So, I'll just have to tackle it by myself soon and just be done with it.
I'd like to paint a really cute mural in his room too. That would be cool..what little boy wouldn't like a mural on their wall?
Anyhow..those are a few projects I'd like to get tackled and out of the way soon.
Well, that's all for now.Have a lovely evening!
Thanks for joining me in "blogland"
~The Garden Goose~

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Night Visitor...

We had quite an interesting little visitor come ambling through this evening while my husband, daughter and I were out in the courtyard area(under the tree in our backyard we have a sitting area with umbrella and courtyard area and arbor area with jasmine and other flowers) anyhow we were sitting out there this evening right at dusk..close to 8 p.m.... and I see the grass rustle about 2 feet behind daughters chair..I think to myself..oh it's probably a lizard jumping off the tree onto the grasses behind her..but then my husband says.."oh my goodness..will you look at that!'s a raccoon!" It had come right up no more than a few feet behind my daughter and decided it would just start crawling up the tree right behind her. So my daughter went in and got the camera, hubby went and got the flashlight..and we tried to take photos of it in the crook of the tree. I managed to get a few decent images, but hard to do when it is dark out that is for sure. finally came back down the tree and ambled off and climbed the fence between our house and the neighbors.

Quite interesting, and I had not been that close to one in a while. We did make sure that we quickly rounded up the ducks and put them in their pen, as this raccoon was surely big enough to be able to take out one of the ducks if it so desired to...and I definitely don't want to provide it that oppurtunity.

Anyhow..thought I'd share the photo with you all.

Yes,we did have a pet raccoon as a kid, albeit briefly..they do grow fast and can turn wild acting and destructive indoors. So we wound up donating ours to an outdoor classroom facility that would teach school children about wild animals and environments.

Anyhow..enjoy the isn't one of my best..since it was a night shot, but still an o.k. image for being in the dark.

Have a great evening.

~The Garden Goose~

More Picnic Fare...and etc...

Wanted to share another fast,easy "Picnic Take-Along"

This is for something so easy, yet so very refreshing in the summertime, and a great way to use those fresh tomatoes, and not only that..if your kids aren't too fond of either cucumbers or tomatoes they will most likely enjoy this toss together though.(my oldest daughter isn't too fond of either, but really likes them this way)

Tomato/Cucumber Toss

2 cold firm ripe tomatoes,chopped into cubes

1 large cucumber sliced,then cut into cubes

2-3 tsp. of your favourite italian dressing or a greek vinagrette dressing

Toss together well and chill for about an hour before serving to incorporate flavors. So easy..yet so yummy and refreshing.


Fried Pies

2 1/2 cups flours

2/3 cup shortening

pinch of salt

cold water

Fruit filling of your choice

shortening for frying


Cut shortening into flour until mixture is crumbly. Mix in salt.Add cold water,a tablespoon at a time, until you get a stiffwad of dough-stiffer than regular dough.

Pinch dough off and roll it out on a slightly floured surface.Place a saucer on dough and cut out around it.

Place fruit filling (about 2-3 tablespoons inside each dough circle.Fold dough over and mash the edges together lightly with a fork.Fry in medium-hot shortening until browned on both sides.Serves 6-8

Great as a take along snack for a picnic outing.


This afternoon I worked on creating a decorated birdhouse for the etsy shop. This little bird house will be decorated in a retro style look ,and will have a decorated branch to accompany the display. The branch will have cute little paper mache'd blue birds on the branches. And the flowers will be 3-d looking flowers taken from the pattern on the birdhouse design .Together they will make a really cute/whimsical display.I really like how it has already been shaping up.Really cute.I'll of course share the photo with you when the item is completed.-----------

This evenings dinner is Moussake..hadn't made it in a while I had an eggplant in the refrigerator that I wanted to use, and then 2 black angus burgers up in the freezer. So I crumbled the burgers in the skillet, added about a tablespoon and a half of crushed garlic and about a tablespoon and a half of cinnamon and added a jar of marinara sauce.(it calls for a scrambled egg added to the mixture as well, but I didn't have any eggs on hand)Then I slice and layer eggplant and the sauce in a casserole dish, sprinkling the sauced layers with parmesan cheese and sprinkling with supposed to be mozarellla cheese but I onlty had sharp white cheddar on hand this I used that instead.("Improvised Moussaka" I call it..ha)Bake at 350 for 50 minutes.It's not exactly how the recipe is supposed to be..but I improvided and made it work and it will still be yummy and edible.

Served with green peas on the side---------

For dessert my daughter made my husband a really cute chocolate cake topped with fondant. The cake is in the shape of a little tug cute.


Well, I had been wondering when ducks start laying eggs/breeding..well..this afternoon I found out that I definitely do have a pair ...and they are old enough now to want to do what ducks do to make more baby ducks. But apparently they don't have a big enough water container to continue what they are wanting to do. So, I'll most likely have to get them a child's size wading pool if I expect to have fertile eggs for hatching out and being able to sell the babies. As Peking ducks must have water to breed in.But I did definitely pick out a pair. One thing I found out when picking the baby ducklings out on the pekings..the male baby ducks will have a bright yellow beak, while the females will have a pink beak.(you can even tell them apart at 1 1/2 weeks of I was able to do. I was pretty sure I had chosen a pair..and I was right)and as someone mentioned..indeed the female(pink beaked one) is much louder than the male..the Female quacks and quacks loudly, like you'd expect a duck to do, but the male has a low raspy whispery kind of quack.Of course my female duck has not laid her first egg as of yet.

Anyhow..I expect by Spring of next year that I'll be able to have a few ducklings on hand to sell. That would be nice.------------

My daughter and I were able to get out and about to a few shops around town yesterday afternoon, and I wound up getting some cold porcelain is a porcelain that air dries. Pretty cool stuff! I haven't started playing with it yet, but did obtain some push molds to create some different types of flowers and leaves. So..that will be fun.-----------

This weekend has been a bit quiet. But relaxing.Everyone just relaxing and enjoying being around each other.

I hope that you all are having a nice relaxing weekend too, and spoiling those Dad's.

Have a great evening.Thanks for joining me in "blogland"

~The Garden Goose~

Friday, June 15, 2007

Happy Friday!...

Happy Friday!...hooray!
...Friday's are fun around here..usually anyhow. Of course it is also a day that we usually set aside every week to do some housecleaning before the rest and fun that the weekend brings.(but hey..I have a new "toy" to try out today..a new dyson vacuum cleaner..and it's a beauty too)
Friday's are special for me because it means that I'll have 2 entire days to spend with every single member of our family..all together at the same time. It is also sometimes the days when hubby and I can sneak away just by ourselves too for an hour or two all alone if we so choose to. (I'm so appreciative of my oldest daughter often times offering to watch the youngest so that her dad and I can have a "date", she'll say to us..ya know ya'll need a date..go on..I'll watch the 2 youngest kids"..ahh so sweet of her)

Well, I have a new toy to try out this morning... the dyson vacuum..we all crowded into the master bedroom last night to watch my hubby try out the vacuum cleaner on the area rug in the master bedroom..yeah I joked that "oh you got yourself a new toy..have at it..looks like fun can do the whole house now..see you have a new toy." haha ..he was like "yeahhh.right" and gave me that funny look that means "yeah right...NOT!" haha. Anyhow he wanted to see just how good this machine was..and my goodness, we were just a few seconds the filter area was swirling with dust and!!(doesn't take much to entertain my crew around here huh? LOL haha)
My family joked that "hey have a clean house already, but now you are gonna be known as "Spotless" ...ahh well. It will be nice to be able to actually really get alot of the allergens up while I am doing my household chores. as Martha Stewart says..."It's a good thing!"..haha.

I forgot to post a picture last night of the little floral arrangement I made..isn't it cute? I like making little things like that. They are so fun and cheerful and they really add a bit of fun and whimsy to decor.I like anything like that ..that has a decidedly "garden look" to it. I adore flowers of all kinds.
Speaking of flowers...the cottage garden has had a round of lavender colored bee balm growing in it..most of that has gotten faded flowers now..but the flowers that have started popping up all over in the garden now are gloriosa daisies(some folks call them black eyed susans but these are large flowers though) and a few bright reddish orange blanket are so cheerful. I could most assuredly have a garden filled with just thosse two "sunshine bringers" I tell you! They are so delightful and so cheery looking. They never cease to perk me up when I see them. I really enjoy seeing bright cheerful yellow flowers like those.

This afternoon after my household clean up is complete..I'm wanting to get out the old Farm ABC coloring book that my hubby found at the antique mall this past weekend..and trace over some of the images to prepare a few tea towels for some redwork embroidery. Lookig forward to scouring through the book to find unique little patterns...oooh what fun!..Play time later today..ha.

I wanted to wish you all a very lovely day today. I hope that today brings you a bit of cheer and a smile upon your face.
Have a good one!

Thanks for joining me in "blogland"
~The Garden Goose~

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Sunshiney day...Picnic Fare and more...

A lovely day outside today here.
Hope that all of your day is going well, and you are enjoying a sunny outlook and a sunshiney countenance is upon your face today.

Let's see what is new today...

Oh, I got a new "servant" today (as my friend Elizabeth over at "Elizabeth's Clothesline" would call it...I always do chuckle when I read her writings about making her "servants"go to work... a.k.a. the washing machine and dryer and other household appliances that make work simpler for us housewives) hubby bought me a new vacuum cleaner.
A fancy smancy thing too compared to any vacuum cleaner I have ever owned.

I have tiled floors so I had been using a simple little $30 special from Kmart for quite a of those teeny little bright yellow things..nothing fancy at all. Anyhow last week while vacuuming..I was thinking how nice it would be to have one of those types with the air purifying filters and the allergen catcher type thing..oh shoot I don't know all the fancy words for them..but a better one that had an attachment and would get up the dust in hard to reach areas lots better. So there I was thinking about wanting one..and lo and behold the next day my husband says to me.."how would you like a new vacuum cleaner?" and I said well, I had been thinking about one lately..and well..I dunno as they are kind of expensive and the one I have works..but it would be nice to have a better one"..but I leave that up to you" So he said "well, since you had been thinking of it, and here I have found one without knowing that you had been thinking of it..well, then I'm going to go ahead and get it for you then"
So he ordered a nice vaccum that has a lifetime hepa filter in it...and a long hose attachment so that I can reach up and dust off the ceiling fans and valances, etc.
Coool! :0)

See that picnic basket in the upper left? is there because I want to start sharing with you all some recipes that would be good "picnic fare".Things that can easily be packed in a tupperware container and taken on a quick picnic day out. (If taking a hot dish along or an item that requires refrigeration..remember to take along a cooler full of ice to provide proper storage for the item and do not leave an item out in the heat. Picnic items should be refrigerated as soon as possible after serving for safety bringing along a cooler full of ice is a good idea for carrying the items that may be left over..back home...remember safe food precautions..always better to be safe than sorry.Items like mayonaisse should never ever be left in the heat)

First up is :

Best Macaroni Bake

16 oz. pkg macaroni
1 cup soft bread crumbs
2 eggs well beaten
2 cups canned tomatoes
1 cup American cheese
1/3 cup diced green peppers
1 tsp. minced onion
1/4 cup melted butter

Cook macaroni in boiling (salted) water for 7 minutes.Drain, add remaining ingredients, mix lightly, season to taste.Pour into greased 2 quart casserole. Bake in moderate oven (350 degrees)for 45 minutes.Serves 6

Salads are also a nice item to take along on a picnic.
You can chop your lettuce or use a pre prepared mixture and add items like shredded carrots, celery slices, or chopped apples and nuts and raisins.
Put into small single serve tupperware containers and into the cooler to keep cold. Take along your favorite bottle of dressing in the cooler too.

Wines can be taken along..don't forget the corksrew to open the bottle.
And the wine glasses.

Items like apple slices, bananas, baby carrots, celery sticks, trail mixes, granola bars, crackers, cheese, olives, pickles, cubed deli meats.

These items can all pack very easily into small containers and pack very easily also into a small ice cooler.

Remember to take a blanket to spread on the ground.And a cup and drinks and utensils and plates.

And always remember to clean up after yourself.

Most of all..take along someone you love or like..and enjoy spending time together in the great outdoors..just enjoying each others company..and enjoying nature.

It's a great way to "reconnect" with a spouse or with your children.

Fruit Salad
1 tub of cool whip
1 large can of fruit cocktail,drained well,cold
1 large apple cored and cut into small chunks,cold
1 large banana sliced
1 small can drained mandarin oranges,cold
1 bag mini marshmallows
1 cup chopped pecans

Mix all together well.Enjoy! A nice cool, refreshing fruit blend.(fresh sliced strawberries can be added also if you wish)

Have a great afternoon!
~The Garden Goose~

It's gonna be a bright, bright,!

A nice sunny day here today.
We had 2 days of much needed rain..and today..I could almost guarantee that my little corner of the smiling. The flowers, trees, grass..certainly needed it..and I think that if they could verbalize anything..they'd certainly all send out a resounding"thank you!"

You know how everything looks after a rain the next day..just that nice fresh feel to everything and it seems like an extra sparkle all around..well, that's how it looks outside here today.

My fat little ducks a.k.a. "waddle butts" certainly are happier about things. Seems the rain does help to cool everything off for a little bit at least.
Well, time today to let go of the flusterations and aggravations of yesterday, and time to face a new day..with a smile and thankfulness.

Today I plan on doing a bit of crafting for my little etsy shop. ...last night I created the prettiest,cutest little garden styled mini floral arrangement. I do very much enjoy working with creating little floral arrangements. I usually can do those in very little time, and love the end results.Anyhow..I'll be posting a picture of my wee creation on here this evening, and also on the etsy site later today.

I'm wanting to decorate some wooden birdhouses if I can today....I have some cute ideas that I think will turn out really nicely.

Have posted a few images here of the new teas/and a new soap that I am offering on etsy. My husband who is a graphics artist designed the labels for me.. I think they are really nice. I really like the designs.
I'm hoping to add a few varieties of linen/room sprays too soon.
He's working on designing the labels for that for me as well.
He's been so supportive of my little venture.
Well, here is wishing you all a very lovely day today.(I'll add some more recipes this evening and a photo of the little floral arrangement I made last night....and try to have something a bit more interesting to share with you all this evening.)
Thanks for joining me in blogland.
~The Garden Goose~

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Flusterations and aggravations....

Oh dear of "those" days today..the kind where you wish you could crawl back into bed and draw up the covers and start over again type of days.
Yeah..we all have 'em..and today was my day.

It started at about 9 a.m. this morning when I went to check my sons ear..we had been struggling with an ear infection for 3 1/2 weeks with him...and had taken him to a nurse practioner at the start of the symptoms..well..
this certain nurse practioner had assured me that I was to "flush the ear twice daily with water" before administering floxin ear drops." Well, when I first heard this procedure 31/2 weeks ago I thought..hmm but he has what is called "swimmer's ear" and I thought that you aren't supposed to add water to the ear.. but then I thought..well..she's a nurse..went to school for this..what do I know?..right????


I should have listened to that little warning signal that was oh so quiet 3 1/2 weeks ago..ya know that little tiny inkling you get when something just doesn't feel quite right?Oh..I wish, wish, wish I had listened to that nagging little inkling inside that I had.

Well, I didn't..I just said "o.k...well, we will do as the nurse prescribed and we'll keep doing it until the ear gets better."
Well..we kept on and kept on..and the ear wasn't getting better and wasn't getting better.

Luckily my son has had no pain with this..thank goodness.

But this past Saturday night..after things still weren't better I was sitting in bed and said to my hubby.."can you do me a favor?..let's check on the computer about what it says to do for swimmer's ear and ear infections and let's see if there is any mention about flushing the ear with water"

Well, of course there was none!! In fact everything we were reading was emphatically against putting water in the ear.

Oh my was I mad..I was madder than mad..I was spitting mad.
So come Sunday morning after all this..into the bathroom son and I go to try and dry his ear with a little bit of holding the hair dryer near the ear at a light angle.

We did this for 2 days. Seemed like a tiny improvement. Then to today..
I went to remove the light gauze that I was putting in his ear to catch the drainage..and..oh no!!!...blood!

Now..I was even madder yet..oooh..knowing that most assuredly, most certainly I had been given totally wrong instructions for this situation! How could she???!!! Didn't she go to school to learn how to help people??? While me....I'm just a mere highschool drop out and a stay at home mom...certainly she was "supposed" to have more medical knowledge than I huh??? a new dr. we went this afternoon to be told that"no way, no how are you ever supposed to put water in an ear that is have been told the wrong instructions..I am so sorry you had to go through this..your son has a burst ear drum" but we'll prescribe the strongest antibiotic I can for him and it should heal..come back in 2 weeks so that we can check the progress, oh..and don't get the ear wet at all"

well..back home I came and since the nurse practioner was on vacation..I called her at home..and yes..I did give her a piece of my mind. Did she admit that she had made a mistake? ...oh fact she lied several times on the phone to me.
Well..we told her that there was no way she'd ever get our business ever again.
uggh. I told her that not only had she told us wrong..that even then she had to basically call both my husband and I liars and claim she never gave us those instructions.. when we both were in the office and heard her, and when I was gone to the new dr's office she had called my husband at home and assured him that yes you can put water in the ear..yet again..
so I asked her..didn't you just tell my husband an hour ago that indeed you could put water in the ear..and ya know..she denied it...and I told her..that what made me even madder still that she didn't even have the guts to admit that she was wrong and to apologize for doing so.
Anyhow..and get this..she had wanted to start an ethics committee here in our town for the County Commissioners..isn't that a hoot?
I told my husband.."an ethics committe when it is obvious she is a bald face liar?" how amazing!!! ." I had to laugh about that.
At least that was one thing in this whole thing I think I could laugh about..on a day when I just felt like crying because my son ..poor little guy..had to pay for someone telling me wrong.
I have felt absolutely terrible all day today..that I didn't listen to that inkling voice a bit sooner...the little signal that lets you know that something "isn't quite right"...I have learned today to listen more to that "still small voice" a bit usually is right on target....anyhow..
Today my "mama's heart" really cried.
On a wee bit better note though..I created a really cute garden styled mini floral arrangement for my etsy shop. I will post it tomorrow. I really like how it turned out. Really cute and cheerful.
A little bit of of small table decor, I like it alot, and hopefully others will too.
I tell you, this etsy stuff has become a bit of a challenge trying to come up with new things,ideas,items that I "think" folks would like. I guess until the little shop gets established a bit more things will be slow a wee bit.
I do try and go into the forums and check out other etsy shop owners and try to network..and try to mention things here on the blog from time to time.
And try to post a new item as often as I can.
Well..after several months of no makes the 2nd day in a row that we have recieved we actually got quite a bit of rain..nearly an entire days worth. That was very nice, although I think we could have an entire week's worth and still not be caught up with how much we are behind this year on rainfall.
Well, that is all today.
Hope that we all have a better rest of the week this week.
~The Garden Goose~

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Rain! Rain!...and Amish cooking...

We finally recieved rain today..oh happy dance!
I actually did go out in the rain and just sort of dance around a bit/spinning. So happy that we finally got rain. As it had been so long.
It rained for a while this afternoon. Was actually so nice to hear the thunder and the rain falling after having been so dry here for so long.

My daughter had her sewing lessons today...and while that was going on I took the oppurtunity to put labels on some soaps for my little etsy shop, and to photograph them.

Dinner this evening was so yummy. I made some white hominy as a side dish(I drain it very well then let it sizzle with a little bit of smart balance in a sauce pan). A salad to go on the side made with chopped apple,romaine , and sprouts(broccoli sprouts)and a mix of sunflower seeds, walnuts, almonds and raisins(both regular and golden)drizzled with a poppy seed dressing, then main course was italian sausage sauted with red and green bell peppers and onion.

I picked up a copy of the book shown upper right an antique mall this past weekend.
I wanted to share a recipe from that book with you all this evening.

this one is for :
Banana Drop Cookies

3 cups flour
1 tsp.soda
1/2 cup walnuts
1 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 tsp.baking powder
1 tsp.salt
2 eggs
2 bananas sliced
1/2 cup sour cream
Sift flour, baking powder,soda,and salt into mixing bowl.Add the nuts.
Pour blended mixture over sifted flour mixture. Mix thoroughly.Drop by teaspoonful onto greased sheet. Bake in oven (350 degrees F.) until lightly browned and done, about 12 minutes.
(I posted this recipe this evening because I figure that most folks have the ingredients on hand, and it would also be a good way to use those bananas that might be getting a bit ripe too fast.)

Well, I had briefly mentioned a retail space in our downtown area..we went to look at last just was not in a very good foot traffic area and way too much cosmetic work to be done to make the area suitable for the type of thing I'd want to do..then add to it the fact that since there wasn't much foot traffic/business I didn't feel like it would be a safe area for me to be in.
So..scratch that one..there will be other oppurtunities to come along and when the time is right I will know.
In the meantime I will continue plugging along at the little etsy shop I have and offering fun items.
And continue doing reasearch for the type of boutique I really want to have.
Well, my ducks seem to be lots happier today now that it has rained.
But I saw a yucky thing this afternoon in the rain..yuck to me..but it is nature though...
while it was raining..a big rat had discovered the ducks food tray and had climbed into it and was just munching away in the drizzling rain(it had not started really raining yet) but the rain had driven it out to a food source and it was going to town gorging itself while it could on duck mash...uggh. I saw it outside of my kitchen window and at first thought it was a bird. Apparently this rat/oversized mouse..lives up under my deck..o.k. double yuck...I guess my husband will have to get out the pellet gun soon, as well...I don't care for mice/rats.. at all. And when the ducks saw it they set up a racket..well..can you blame them? That is their food, their water area. They had not finished eating their mash this morning..I honestly did not think that a rat would come out and start having at it.
But then I guess I should not have been so suprised as I have seen them climb the shepherd hook pole to go after bird seed before.
uggh. like I said..I can't stand them.
I guess I don't honestly mind them too much as long as they stay out in a field or something, and they do make good coyote food, and they do help to spread seeds in the forests and what not..but up close to the house is just a bit too close for me.
Well, my daughter and I both have entered the pinkeep contest over at Mary Jane's Farm website and I must say I am so suprised that only 6 people have entered the contest thus far. I was really hoping that more people would have gotten involved by now.
Well, that is all in my little corner of the internet for now.
May you all have a wonderful evening.
Thanks for joining me in blogland.
~The Garden Goose~

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Cottage charm...and more...

Do you ever just daydream about the perfect spot? or how you'd really decorate a house if you could? We probably all do it from time to time..just looking through those home decorating magazines oohing and ahhing over colors and design.

I know I do. Only thing house is not a country farm is a rancher in the city..and has a totally different look and feel than the big front porch and the open airy breezy rooms that I picture in my daydreams.

But I do try to decorate it with a little bit of country and cottage style..I guess some could call it "hodge podge"..but somehow for now it all goes together and says "home"...for now..

I was thinking about this the other day when I was crafting a pillow for my etsy shop. How if I had a breezy old fashioned home...that I'd for sure have more cottage/Victorian items in it like what I was crafting at the moment...things that to me say "garden/cottage/tranquility"

I found this soft pink and burgundy fabric that had sprays of roses on feminine and delicate. I thought..ooh wouldn't that be nice to mix with a soft pale greens and just have a lovely dreamy room.
But alas... right now that isn't my style in my master
you can see the pillow on etsy ...ha.Because it doesn't go with my decor...but maybe it will with someone's.
Well, yesterday we had a good day. My husband and I got out of the house together without the children. .. we headed over to the antique mall and I have some neat things that I'll be sharing in my etsy shop later.
I have a bunch of crafting items to get made up that I think will be really cute..just have to get them done.
It was a hot day yesterday that is for sure. The van thermometer kept registering 92 degrees, but I tell you..the heat index was sweltering/felt more like 102 out there. And you know it's hot when the glare and heat off of the pavement makes you squint.
I did find a cool Amish Dutch cookbook too. Really I'll be sharing a few recipes from that here too.
Well, I have some etsy products to get made up today. Just plugging along at that lately as I'd like for it to do better/have some sales.
Then I'll be doing some product research for in case we do decide to find out more on the retail shop.
We shall see.
I made nice big pancakes for breakfast this morning for everyone..and put a whole container of fresh blueberries in the mix..they were yum..made something that isn't so good for least a little bit healthier..ha.Certainly made a difference on the taste..they were delish!
Oh, I forgot to husband found the cutest vintage farm coloring book! woohoo..and I told him..oooh I want that! I can use it to create neat embroidered towels and such..oh my goodness the pictures are just darling. I can't wait to get crafting on some redwork images and so forth. It wil be so fun. It was a terrific find.
Well, I hope that you all have a very nice day today.
~The Garden Goose~