Monday, October 28, 2013

Halloween Bean Bag Bats!

Halloween is upon us, one of my favorite times of the year. One night when I should of been sleeping but couldn't. I grabbed my iPod and tapped into pintrest, after typing in the search words "Halloween tutorials" I came across this; Then I must of feel back to sleep.

The next morning I was up bright and early and to my surprise I started digging through my scraps found everything I needed to make my 4 Grandkids these cute silly bats. The fun thing about the bats is they just hang around the house on a door knob or something like that. My 2- 2year old Grandkids like to wear them on their arms sort of like a purse.

If you want something to sew that doesn't take very long at all and they are just the right size to were you can use fabric out of your scape bins, virtually no cost and a fun 2-3 hours of a Grandma's time. This is a tutorial you should look at.


Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

That Old Fence has seen better days.

I have always pointed out different types of fencing to my husband that we pass by going down the road . I guess it comes from growing up on a farm with livestock fencing was always an important topic.

The fence that holds our home/yard together is beyond repair, and trust me I have mentioned it just a few times over the years. About 3 weeks ago Glenn says out of the blue, "well Betty I guess it's time for a new fence, how about you gather up some estimates and see what this is going to cost us"! I couldn't believe my ears, I have been waiting for those words to come out of his mouth for 6+ years and now the day has come. YIPPEE!

The next day I am on the computer doing my research about fencing, then I present to Glenn my vision of a fence, and to my wonder, we weren't far off on what we both wanted the outcome to be. After a some discussion I lined up 3 different company's to come out and give us their ideas and basically in a nut shell estimate how much is was going to cost.

It's funny to say but the decision is going to be made on who can come in with the best price for tearing down and hauling away our tired old fence. Materials and labor are pretty much all the same price on the 3 quotes. Don't you think that's funny too?

To cut down on cost I came up with doing part of the labor myself; after creating a "phasing schedule" showing, If I work 5 days a week for 1 hour (my wrist and back dictate how long each day I can pull off this manual labor) I will be done with the clearing of old dead tree limbs, 4 to 5 inches of pine needles and overgrown junipers trees and lilac bushes by the end of November. Yikes!!

Where do I start?

About 3 feet is all I can clear away in an hour so I think my phasing schedule might be a little off. The good thing about this is we don't plan on having the new fence built till spring 2014. I have found I am as happy as a person can be clearing out years of pine needles and giving old trees a hair(limb) cut because the end result will be something I have waited for, for such a long time. Who would of thought something like a new fence would come as such a joy in my life right now.

I guess I will start right here.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Redmond to Salem to Portland and back!

WOW, it is the 2nd week of August our summer is now here and almost gone. What a bitter sweet sad summer we have had here at our house. I haven't been blogging at all this summer as my husbands parents both passed away and I felt all my energy was needed  elsewhere. This has been a very busy and emotional time for me, I feel it was my "duty" and out of much love to take care of the Husband during his time of grieving. Then yesterday I realized after visiting the grave site where Jason's body is buried and just the week before watching Glenn and his family spreading the ashes of their dear Mother Anna Louise that the grieving don't really stop it is just there from time to time. So as Glenn has said to me, "I just need to get back into my daily habits and move on where I can live with the memories I have of my parents and not their deaths".  So there you have it, I am now understanding that the grieving will continue but in a different way, it does become part of your life you just need to work through it and continue on.

Summer blog August 2013

Yesterday Glenn and I took Micah to the Portland airport where he departed back to his current home in South Korea. Micah coming back home for a week was such a nice enlightening time for us. We did so much this past week and I will continue to have a few more entries about this but for now lets start with our trip back home to Central Oregon.

Happy summer travels to you and your family, Betty

What we see heading up the mountain, YIKES!
Not looking much, better that's for sure.
At the top of Mt Hood, these are clouds we are driving through, so much for the summer fun.
Off the mountain and heading into beautiful Central Oregon.
Almost home and still such a dramatic sky ahead.

Watching the sunset on the mountain range we just drove over, through our car window.


Wednesday, June 19, 2013

A yard full of Wild Flowers!

Did you know you can get a batch of wild flowers from your local seed shop that is deer resistant. If you are in an area where deer can be a curse to your yard, this is a great investment. Just like any other wild flower mix the first year -- nothing to shout about, second year -- you will get quite a show and by the third year and there after -- WOW-EEE...You will have a nice flower bed throughout the entire summer. When you finally approach fall and on into winter you let the beds reseed themselves for the summer to follow. With a little water, lots of sun and very little weeding you can have a pretty showy yard..

Third year, as you can see you get a good variety of color. 

True Pink!

There are so many poppy buds I can't wait to see them all in bloom.
   Happy Gardening, Betty Jo

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Fresh Mint Tea

If you are one of those people who plant mint because you just like the thought of having mint available to you or in your yard and realize it can act like a weed and take over the entire bed. Here is a great Tea recipe I came across in the HOBBY FARM AND HOME Magazine (march/april 2013 issue). 

Fresh Mint Tea

2 packed cups mint, washed well
4 whole cloves
2 tsp. honey
4 cups boiling water

Place leaves in a suitably sized teapot or other container with a cover. Add cloves and honey. Pour boiling water over all, and let steep for about 20 minutes, then strain and serve. Can also be chilled for later use. 

Serves 4
ENJOY...I know I will!

Monday, May 27, 2013

"STAMPING" = camping in your own or a friends backyard

Stamping means; camping in your own or a friends backyard. taken from stay-cation

This is our backyard in Central Oregon as you can see the sky is blue and it is memorial weekend. Everyone well most everyone likes to kick off the camping season by pitching their tent for the 1st time on memorial weekend. But sometimes the weather is just so unpredictable this time of year especially when the forecast calls for 70% chance of rain. My girlfriend really wanted to camp but it just wasn't working out or should I say the weather was to iffy. After much brain storming on Lisa and my part we came up with camping in our yard for the weekend and if the weather got to bad they would have the comforts of our house.

Lisa wanted to make sure she was "self contained", well except for the luxury of using "the Hosts" bathroom. I have to say she did a really good job in making sure she had everything she needed, her car was packed with all of their camping gear, just like as if we were heading up to the mountains. They decided to pitch their tent pretty close to the fire pit and under a tree.

Here she is, ready for a weekend of FUN! Glenn and I joined her and Kevin for most meals well all the meals actually. They had a great menu planned and enough to feed us too. So you might say Glenn and I made out pretty darn good. 
Glenn was a great camp host, he kept the firing going, and he was able to clean up the complete pile of yard debris we had accumulated over the years. I do need to mention that Lisa did bring her own wood, but I think Glenn liked adding more to the fire.

Rainy morning with spots of blue sky made for a nice day around the camp site.

Having some fun with my Ipad camera.

Just some more fun.

As I was saying the food was awesome, but there isn't anything like cooking out doors and Lisa is so good at it!
Glenn with his pitch fork, looks like to me he needs to "stoke those fires". I think Kevin is making sure his hat is on straight:)..I wonder if the neighbor across the canal enjoyed watching us all weekend as much as we enjoyed our time "stamping". 

Well here I am eating some strawberries by the hot coals, Juniper Berry also takes in all the delights of camping as you can see by the look on her face. I have to say, it won't be to long before Glenn and I will be pitching our tent in the backyard for the weekend and enjoying some "stamping" time. Really you should try it, it is incredibly fun and its good for you to get out and enjoy your own backyard!!!

                            its like a stay-cation but its stay-camping...Brilliant! 


Monday, May 20, 2013

Walking with Kendall

Lately Kendall and I have been able to take our morning walks before the sun gets to warm. We are averaging 3 miles 4 times a week. Pretty good for a Grandma pushing her grand daughter. Today was especially fun, a lot of people were out in their yards and most of them had to say "hi" since Kendall was hollering at them to get their attention. 

When we made it to  the canal road, Kendall had fun telling the ducks in the canal to "get". I assume that is what her mom or dad says to their dogs or goats. But she really has it down, her voice got low and loud sometimes the ducks would fly into the air. We thought that was pretty funny.

My heavy breathing from pushing the stroller in the cinders must of tired out Kendall as much as it did me but I wasn't able to take a little nap like some one else:)!

Tomorrow the rain is suppose to start for a few days, I sure hope we are able to get in our daily walk before that happens. I will always cherish these moments and will never take them for granted.

Sunday, May 5, 2013


I am currently on at 42 day liver purification, this is day 23. Did you know it takes 21 days to form a habit, I personally did not know that until this program. The first 21 days you can consume all the vegetables you want and they should be as close to raw as possible, 1/4 the amount of fruit and 1/4 the amount of green lentils. Also included is a vegetable based protein drink you take twice a day. As of yesterday I am to add one healthy food item back into my diet every 3 days or so, like fish, chicken, beans, etc. I am to stay away from dairy, grains like bread, sugar and no processed foods. Well has my life turned upside down but you know I am doing really well, I feel 100 percent better, my headaches are gone and I can almost feel my body healing in one way or another. Needless to say the weight is coming off right along with all the other positives.

Since I am on the 2nd half of this purification it is very important I sweat wether it be from exercise, heat, or a DETOX BATH. This is really what my post is about today; I found this perfect DETOX BATH on pinterest I have posted the website below but here is the breakdown.

Fill your tub with warmer to hot water
add 2 cups epson salt
2 cups baking soda
1 tablespoon ground ginger
you can add fresh lavender, or whatever oil you like that is calming
Soak for 20 minutes minimum, 40 minutes is better
When you get out dry off then wrap yourself in a cotton blanket, sit down and relax for another 20 minutes and drink some water!

You will feel amazing, if you look up the website it tells you what the different ingredients do to your system but really you have to trust me it's amazing.. I will be doing this every sunday evening as part of my second half journey ritual.

Here is the website I got the information from

Purification or Detox every once in awhile; it is GOOD THING!

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Glenn's Birthday camping quilt

When I asked Glenn to clean out his closet of old jeans and tee's he doesn't wear anymore, I really had other intensions. Making my first rag quilt, using denim tested my patience and made my hands sore sore sore! Cutting up the tee's made me smile, watching how all the pictures and symbols all came together. I decided to personalize some of the denim squares with embroidery so 4 months later the quilt is done just in time for Glenn's birthday!

Sunday, April 14, 2013

"kickin it old skool"!

kickin' it ol' skool

kickin' it ol' skool can imply many different things, but there are two main definitions:
1)Doing something like it was done in the '80s 
2)(The most popularly used version): Hanging out with a good friend that you've grown up with.

Yesterday Glenn and I set out to find Glenn his birthday present. He had his hopes set on a portable camping oven, ( yes you heard me right Mr. Camping Minimalist) wanted a oven to take camping. So off to Costco we go, when we finally saw it out of the box he thought it was to big to take camping, he then tells me he would like a new out door grill, OK! Off to Sportsmens, Home Depot, Lowes, Walmart, Fred Meyers and Big R. In that Order which will have somewhat of an importance at the end of the story. 

Glenn wanted a small compact propane grill made in the USA! Oh God does that even exist??? Well not one that we could find here in Central Oregon. Probably could of ordered one for a pretty hefty price but that wasn't an option for us yesterday. It almost became a quest for us to find that perfect grill, or should I say it did become a quest. 

The first store after Costco was Sportsmen's Warehouse, they probably had the best grill selection, but we did travel to each of the other stores but just like Murphy's Law states you seem to get the first one you looked at...Glenn's criteria for a grill was not quite all filled, but boy is he happy with what  he FINALLY chose. 

Take a look: compact check, grill check, and MADE IN THE USA check!
Glenn's 59th Birthday Present "THE ALL CAST IRON, MADE IN USA, ASHFORD HIBACHI"!

There you have it, and this is how 2 "empty nesters" spend their day on a saturday..

Happy Birthday Glenn!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

The Snow Child By EOWYN IVEY - One of a kind story!

It's interesting how my oldest step daughter knows me, Amanda brought over this book, left it on my table and said something like, this is a good book I think you will like it..Boy was she ever right, this book takes you to the very place that is described chapter by chapter. When I was reading this book in bed I would have to put on socks  because my feet would get so cold from feeling the winter chill as it was describe in such great detail. 
The story takes place in Alaska in a cabin in the woods in a very remote village/town. I almost feel like I know this area and have been there a lot! I find it very strange and exciting to be able to say that just from reading a book for pleasure.  

For about a week after I had finished the book I would think about the little girl in the wool blue coat with red mittens and a fur hat, with her friend The Little Fox beside her. I missed them!

I would recommend anyone who reads to read this book, truly it is one of a kind. Amanda thank you so much for knowing I would like this book. It was a real pleasure to consume myself in. 

Happy Reading, Betty Jo 

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Today's Thoughts: Learning something new and relearning something all over again!

Kendall Jay one year later...

Relearning something new!
I have had the pleasure of watching Kendall during the week while her mom and dad work for the past year now.  During my job search Kendall has helped me understand (over and over again), you need to be patient and just take things in life one step at a time. It has been a real treat to watch her grow into a toddler from just a new born baby, she really is good to me when it comes to understanding that I am just her grandmother so let's figure this out together:)...

Learning something new!
I have also taken on a few projects to get me through the winter time, mostly in the sewing area. I have been working on these pot holders, which we need desperately. The ones we use now have really been through a lot and really need to be replace. Here is why I am talking to you about these pot holders...As silly as it sounds so far, all 3 of them have been sitting on my desk waiting for me to complete the next step...BINDING! Which is also the final step. I have never "bind" anything before and for some reason it really intimidates me to do it.

I am going to try and follow this seamstress tutorial;

She has set up 22 photo's with the steps you need to take to bind something correctly. If there is anyone out there who has a better website or advice on this topic by all means TELL ME.. So until I get the courage to complete these very cute potholders here is a picture of them just sitting on my desk waiting for me.

Cute aren't they, the embroidery on them was fun and simple, now the challenge "binding"..Ouch that hurts....wish me luck!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Anti-inflammatory cooking and Me!!

When you are asked by the person who is guiding you through your health issues and aging concerns to go on a anti-inflammatory diet what do you say?  YES! And your life style with eating begins to change, now I am not saying I am perfect when it comes to being "strict" with what I put into my mouth but I will tell you I am giving it a pretty darn good try.

I was talking to my acupuncturist about how I could only eat so many raw veges with out ranch dressing, Lol (she really didn't laugh). Since you aren't suppose to have ranch dressing how about trying eggplant dressing, she says?. I don't recall ever having egg plant what really do I have to loose, I was pleasantly surprised how inexpensive egg plant was, since I could just be throwing it away, right.

I have to say Roasted Eggplant Dip has become my go to dip for everything. It is one of the 3 foods or recipes I have experienced for the 1st time since I have taken this road and enjoyed. The 2nd food is Hemp Seeds! Where have you been all my life? Amazing stuff, I can't believe my son never mentioned hemp seeds to me before this, but in all honesty I probably wouldn't of tried them until now:P)..I was really curious about hemp seeds so I found an article that pretty much told me all I needed to know. The article is attached with the website at the end of this post. The 3rd food/recipe is mashed cauliflower, omg I love mash potatoes and I knew I wouldn't be seeing them anytime soon. After trying mashed cauliflower I am sold, tastes and feels just like mashed potatoes but GOOD FOR YOU. I didn't want to ruin the good in the cauliflower by adding butter so I made a "balsamic vinegar reduction" drizzled a small amount on the mashed cauliflower, BAM!

Try this you won't be sorry;  Roasted Eggplant Dip
- cut eggplant in half length wise
- cut slits in mean and slide pieces of garlic in
- Brush the meat with olive oil
- bake in over 400 between 40-60 minutes depends on size of egg plant 
- take out when flesh is soft
- scrape the meat into a food processor, discard skin
- add seasonings, i.e., red peppers flakes, pepper, mrs dash, cayenne, turmeric, lemon juice, etc. plus more olive oil as needed for consistency of the dip.
Dip keeps in the refrigerator up to 2 weeks. Delish 


Hemp seeds can contain up to 36% protein. In the 1950s, scientists worked to determine lab models for foods, the vegetable protein model was derived from hemp seed and was called edestin. The protein in hemp seed is comprised of approximately 65% of edestin and can be found only in hemp seed protein. Edestin aids digestion, is low in phosphorus and is considered the backbone of human cellular DNA. The other one third of hemp seed protein is Albumin, another high quality globulin protein similar to that found in egg whites.

One of the common arguments against hemp is that soy has a much higher total protein count than hemp seeds. But hemp seed protein is free of the tryspin inhibitors which block protein absorption that is found in abundance in soy. Hemp protein is also free of oligosaccharides found in soy, which cause stomach upset and gas.

Hemp protein contains all 20 known amino acids including the 8 essential and 2 semi-essential amino acids (EAAs) our bodies cannot produce. Proteins are considered complete when they contain all 9 essential amino acids in a sufficient quantity and ratio to meet the body's protein requirements. This makes hemp seeds perfect for vegans, vegetarians or anyone who is looking to reduce the meat content of their diet, hemp seed protein can supply all of the protein requirements without the bad fats in meat and without the stomach upset from soy.

This makes hemp seed the perfect high protein food. With a complete collection of amino acids, with ultimately the best digestibility of any vegetable protein, with the added bonus of Essential Fatty Acids, lacking the items found in soy that cause gas, hemp is truly the perfect vegetable source for a high protein food.

If you are looking for a high protein food for a high protein diet but you would rather not eat meat, or are not interested in bulking up on whey or soy, hemp as a high protein food is perfect for you. With just a couple of handfuls equalling a full days worth of protein, it is the ultimate high protein food.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

End of Winter out of town trip to the Oregon Coast

Do you know how humbling it is for a parent when one of your kids ask you if you would like to join them on their "mini family vacation"? Glenn & I experienced this last month when Amanda and Dustin asked us to join them in Lincoln City. They rented a house for 3 days and we rented a bedroom from them:)..The house was perfect to say the least, this beautiful home sits right on the inlet on a sand spit right in Lincoln City. The wind from the ocean was blocked by the sand spit which made walking on the inlet beach very pleasant.

 Glenn & I enjoyed watching our grand kids Lucy and Lincoln dig in the sand and pick up any and everything they saw on the beach. I don't want to go without mentioning how Lincoln entertained us a Moe's Fish House, (photos below)..It was an aha moment for Glenn and I as we watched Lucy and Lincoln and all we had to do was smile or laugh but it wasn't our job to keep everyone in-toe.  Oh the joys of being the Grandparents!

What a pleasant trip we had;

Lincoln enjoying the sand

Tide pools and standing water is the best at the ocean

Glenn & I enjoyed some time at the McMenamins in Lincoln City

Lucy colors beautifully. 

Lincoln entertaining us at Moe's by using his plate as a hat:).

The kids love when Dad reads to them before bedtime, I might add I enjoyed the store too. 

Lucy showing Grandpa the crabs parts she was taking home, Lol...

More digging in the sand, you just never know what's under the surfaced, right Amanda!

Beautiful photo of Amanda enjoying her afternoon coffee and cake. 

Well here I am signing off until the next post,
Betty Jo