Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Apple Pie

I was hungry for meatloaf and apple pie so I invited my son and daughter-in-law to stay for dinner when they came to get J.Shea Can't make a meatloaf or a pie for just one person. Well, I could, but it sure wouldn't be good for me! Anyway, I thought you might be interested in my apple pie. I got this recipe out of the newspaper many years ago and it is the only apple pie I have made since.
Make a crust for a single crust pie. Peel and slice 7 to 9 apples (I make a deep dish)
Add 1/2 cups sugar
2 Tablespoons flour
dash of salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Mix and pour into crust
Mix together until crumbly
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup flour
1 stick margarine
Sprinkle over pie.

Put pie in a brown paper grocery bag and seal the bag ( I just fold it over a couple times.)

Bake at 400 for 1 hour.

The top gets crispy which I love but the next best thing is that if the pie runs over, as most apple pies do, the mess stays in the bag. This pie is best the day it is made. The topping tends to get soggy the next day.
Give it a try, I'll bet you'll love it!

Monday, October 30, 2006


Week 16/ A Year of Color


I bought this outfit a few weeks ago. Couldn't resist. The pants are black velvet and there is a pocket on the side with candy corn spilling out.

We had a real good day today. The weather was gorgeous! Sunny and in the 60's. Jerzie sat in her stroller and watched me work in the garden. She didn't last long but she got a short nap before Aunt L came to see her and brought her inside.

Jerzie was 3 months on the 20th (to answer Sue) and this week her new thing is to scream and then laugh. It is so funny! Sometimes you think she's upset but she's just having fun.Can't wait to see what she does next week!

Sunday, October 29, 2006


Don't you love babies hands?

I must have taken 25 pics to get these 3! Her hands and feet are moving constantly.She's going to be a busy one, I think.
J. Shea's Mommy and Daddy had a Halloween party last night so she spent the night with Grandma. She was a little cranky last evening, but slept all night and we had a great time this am. A couple weeks ago she would just stare at her fist. She has her hands in fists a lot, like she's ready for a fight! Last week she kept grabbing her ear. We were afraid she was getting sick but she never did . Must be she just discovered her left ear. Now she keeps touching hand to hand. It is so much fun to watch the discovery process. I don't remember being so fascinated with my own kids progress. I guess I was just too busy trying to survive life.
My son came and took her to see her Grandpa but she'll be back tomorrow for her Monday with Grandma.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Halloween decor

I don't do Halloween decorating in the house anymore but I do put a small amount in the shop. There isn't room for much. These are all things I've made over the years.
(click on Picture to enlarge)
The top three items are always up. I had the heart made after I saw a similar one in a craft magazine. I have different bows and figures for the holidays. The girl has different outfits for each season.Her headband, shoes,outfit and item in her hand all change. Everything is made of wood and attached with velcro. The last one is a sign board with a different heart for most seasons and holidays. I'm not into the cutesy country stuff anymore but it's ok for the shop. The little ones enjoy them every year.

Friday, October 27, 2006

Enjoy the day!

I just had to post these pics from our picnic on Colombus Day. I needed to see the beautiful blue sky and sunshine. I get very stressed this time of year because of all there is to get done before winter ( I do it in spring too). I am a planner and there is no time in MY schedule for nasty weather! The trouble is I get so caught up with my schedule being messed up that I forget to just enjoy!

I realized a couple years ago that I was spending so much time looking for weeds in my gardens that I wasn't even seeing the flowers! Everyone was enjoying my gardens but me. I vowed that I would change my ways and start seeing what others saw. Well.....I need to do that now too. I need to think in a new way. If I can't go out and get things done, I need to grab a book (or check out some new blogs) like I do in the winter when we have a storm and all my customers cancel. From now on I will try harder to enjoy the day and not get stressed over the schedule.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Frig Meme

I got this meme from Dawn at 4:53am (see links) to take a pic of your frig as it is right now, no arranging. Mine is pretty boring.
There is some stuff on the side tho.
When I took the pic I realized there were 2 magnets that fit the season so I changed the front. Exciting right?
We had a dry sunny day today! It felt good even if I had to spend most of the day working inside. Even looking a sunshine through the window was good!
I got my last 3 storm windows washed and up and took the cushions and rug off the deck . It's going to rain or snow again so thought I'd better get it done while it is dry. Took in a few more garden ornaments,too. I guess I'm pretty well set except for the leaves.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Here's the problem...

I live in a small city which has earned acclaim as being a "tree city". We have lots of trees and a great system in the fall to take care of leaves. All we, the homeowners, have to do is get the leaves to the curb and the city will pick them up. Sounds great right? Leaf collection usually starts the last week of Oct. or the first week of Nov. According to my calendar these both occur NEXT week. Well...these two trees are over my front lawn,
this one is in the far corner of my back lawn, and this one is on the property line on the side !

Do any of these leaves appear ready to "leaf" the branches of the trees? I think not! Not only do they need to "leaf", I need to blow the front ones onto the curb, and blow the back and side ones on to a tarp which I will then drag to the street. It would also be nice if they would dry out because even dry leaves get heavy when being dragged 125 feet uphill! The good news is it isn't supposed to rain, snow, sleet or hail (all of which it has done this and last week) tomorrow. Any or all of the afore mentioned will start again on Friday and continue for as long as they are giving the forecast. What do you think the probability is of all these green leaves falling to the ground tonight (or at least by 6 tomorrow night when I get out of work), drying out and blowing themselves to the curb? Slim to none, right. That's what I was afraid of!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Halloween Memories

When I had a larger beauty shop with an employee, we used to have a party on Halloween. We had cider and donuts and would always dress up.These are some of the outfits I wore(I'm on the left in the top two).

One of my favorite memories was of Mrs. VanNorman. She was in her 80's and getting her hair done was her only "extravagence". Her husband had died leaving her with 2 boys to raise alone and it had been a struggle but she never complained. In fact, she was always upbeat, telling funny stories about her "senior moments" and laughing at herself.
One Halloween she dressed up and showed up at the shop (it wasn't her normal day). She had dressed up like an old lady! She had an old pair of rhinestone cat eye glasses and rubber boots (so I wouldn't recognize her shoes) She had found a hat, long coat, gloves and a purse that she had used about 20 years earlier. The only thing she couldn't hide were her twinkling eyes and silly grin. We laughed for years about that Halloween and it is still one of my favorite stories. She passed away a few years later but she is one customer that I will never forget!

Monday, October 23, 2006

Year of Color


This pic of me with my son and grandaughter was taken on Colombus at our annual picnic.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Memory jolt

I got my blogging idea from Sue today. I was reading her Sunday Blessings here and she talked about a clock from her Grandparents home that really jolted my memory.I got this mantle clock when Grandma passed away. She had discussed with all 10 grandchildren what we wanted of hers and Grandpas.

It wasn't always in her house like some of these cups and saucers but was given to her by a friends son when her friend and neighbor passed away. She gave me these several years earlier because I remembered them from my childhood.

I have a memory of the clock in my early twenties when I visited her and Grandpa in Florida and my later years after she came back home to live several years after Grandpa died. When I first got the clock, the every 15 minute chime would wake me but even that was a good feeling. I would just take a second to think about how lucky I was to have had great grandparents for such a large part of my life.(Grandma lived to 94 and lived alone in a seniors appartment almost to the end!) If you read my "memories " post in Sept. you know that my father died very young. My Grandpa was my dad and grandfather and because of that I was closer to him than Grandma as a child. Such good memories! I don't even hear the chimes all the time now, I'm so used to it, but when I do it always reminds me of my Grandma and Grandpa.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Home is Where the Heart is

As I was clearing off my deck, readying for winter, I remember something that happened this spring. I was eating lunch on the deck when a robin in the maple tree next to the deck started making all kinds of noise. I looked around the deck because birds had built nests there before but I didn't see anything. The bird kept chirping and I kept looking but still saw nothing. My daughter stopped in and sat across the table from me. All at once she got a strange look on her face and then she started laughing.

I had gotten tired of this dried heart shaped wreath in the house so decided to use it outside. Because my deck has a roof I had left it up all winter. You guessed it! The bird had made a nest on top of the wreath! There were no eggs yet so I removed the nest.(it became part of my deck decor) I have seen what a mess baby birds can make plus I did want to enjoy my deck. Needless to say when I cleared the deck today the wreath was put away for the winter. It will come back out after the nesting season next year!

Friday, October 20, 2006

Shop tour

Well, it's another dark, rainy day in Western NY, so I'll show you more pics of my beauty shop. I have a whole wall of hair "stuff" that I have accumulated over the years. Don't you love these old graphics? I use these to give a little color. I bought a few at a flee market and they even have the human hair nets inside!

The light blue object in the next pic is an old blow drier. It sets on a stand but could be held for a short time. It is very heavy. On top of the curling iron box is an electric crimping iron. On the right is an electric cylinder that heats up. You can put a curling iron in it to heat it up. I assume that came between the irons you heat on a stove and electric ones.

Two early curling irons hang on the pegs. The old electric irons did not have a temperature gage. They just get HOT. A shop I worked in in 1975 used the old irons to do hair at the funeral home. The worst part was the burning hair smell because you had no way to regulate the temperature. They offer to take me with and teach me how to do it but I "gracefully declined"! I have gone to a funeral home once since to do hair on request and one customer tells me she has made all her arrangements in advance and has me listed to do her hair. Now that's something to look forward to!

Thursday, October 19, 2006

What a day!

My daughter and I left home for Buffalo at 9 am. I had a Dr appointment at 11 in downtown. Nine years ago I was diagnosed with melanoma on my thigh. I ended up in Buffalo with Dr K. He has treated people all over the world with melanoma. He is the chief oncology surgeon plus teaches at the University. He removed the tumor, which he called doing a biopsy, on my first visit. I was having a "Stamping Up" party that night and got a friend to be at my house when everyone arrived in case I wasn't home.What a surprise when I came home to a house full of people with a huge hole in my leg. The next visit I found out I needed surgery to make sure the cancer had not spread to the tissue. Luckily it had not spread. I had another scare a couple years later when a mole on my neck was precancerous. Another surgery showed no cancer cells.
I am saying all this to explain why I waited for 3 hours to get in to see the Dr! The good news is I don't have to go back anymore!! After 9 cancer free years it is very unlikely that the cancer will return to that area. Of course, I must have a complete body check by a dermatologist every year but I can handle that!
We never even started shopping until 2:30! We waited in line for about 15 min. at McDonalds, slowed on the Thruway for about 1/2 hour because of a chain reaction accident with 6 or more cars and never got home until after 8! We did find some great bargins tho so it was a good shopping day! Like I said...WHAT A DAY!!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Beauty Shop Tour

It is dark,rainy and windy here today so I decided to start a tour of my beauty shop that is always bright from artificial light. It is in my basement but my house was built on a hill so it is really the first floor in the back of the house. I have a gravel stairway, with gardens on both sides to get to the back of the house.
I have had my own shop since 1981. Originally it was on a busy city street and I had girls working for me. In 1988 I decided to work alone and move to my house. The business has been good to me. I raised 2 kids with that as my only income. My weekly customers, what we in the business called our "bread & butter", are leaving me thru death, moving south after retirement and going to nursing homes. My choice to remedy a cash flow problem was to get another job, thus the grocery store position. It was very hard to leave my comfort zone but it has been good for me in a lot of ways. The biggest of which is getting health insurance after 2 years on the job. Another plus, I feel it has improved my memory. I didn't think I could ever remember everything I needed to! I have gone from cashier, to working the service desk, to the cash office. I work the beauty shop Wednesday thru Saturday days and the store 6 to 10 five nights a week. I'm busy but it is better than being bored!
Here are my first shop pics. Do you know what this is?

If you do, you are dating yourself!

NO! I do not use this! It has been a great conversation starter and I have heard a lot of great stories. This is how they used to do perms. They would clamp a heated clamp on each curler. I can smell the burning hair now! I'm surprised people didn't get electrocuted. I couldn't resist buying it a few years ago. It was actually used in a home shop a couple blocks from my shop. A new owner found it in a basement and didn't know what it was.
Well, that's my first beauty shop entry. I hope you enjoyed it.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Year of Color

I made this apple dip today and decided that it would work for tan. I was going to say I didn't have anything tan so I had to make the dip, but I didn't figure anyone would believe that! It is delicious dip and it's very easy. Just mix together an 8oz. cream cheese (I use low fat), 3/4 cup brown sugar and 1 tablespoon vanilla. Any apples will do. Yummy!

Today was Gramma day with J. Shea. We had a pretty good day and she seemed to like this pumpkin. Mommy said she wasn't eating much but all she wanted to do was eat. She took a couple 20 minute naps and that was it. She is changing so fast! She does something new every week. I can't wait until next Monday to see what's new!

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Antique Boxes?

These are a couple wooden boxes I had made so I could paint them to look like vintage boxes. They were fun to do. There are base colors, painted under the final color, that show through when sanded. I got the pattern and instructions in an Old Fashion Label book by Connie Williams printed in the early nineties. The recipe box shelf used to be stained wood too but I like it better painted and aged. I don't get to paint much anymore with 2 jobs. I used to teach classes in my basement and get together with some friends once a week to paint. I really do miss it, especially in the winter when there is no outdoor work (except shovelling snow, of course)

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Natures Beauty

These are some pictures that I took on our picnic Monday. I wonder if there was something under this tree to make the roots grow out of the ground.

This tree is actually growing on top of a moss covered rock. Enlarge it to see how the roots are making this interesting pattern on the rock.

This is a rock "wall" along the creek. At first I thought someone painted it but realized it is natures paint job.

It is interesting to me how much more I notice when I have a camera with me. I have never taken many pictures because my daughter always did. I've always enjoyed being in the woods and thought I was really observant. Now I wonder how much beauty I really missed!

Friday, October 13, 2006


I have always wanted a fireplace but didn't see anyway I could have one so I decided I'd be happy with a mantle. I bought an artificial fireplace, complete with electric logs, at a household sale for $25. I tore off everything but the mantle and painted it cream. I not only have a mantle but I can put it antwhere I want to!
The oval picture is of my Dad's mother. My cousins gave it to me when my aunt went into a nursing home. They also gave me some young pictures of my Dad that I had never seen.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Wanna Kiss?


Wanna kiss?

Wasn't that nice?
When I was babysitting J.Shea the other day she refused (Hard to believe a kid can refuse anything at 2 months, but she did!) to eat her cereal. The next week she really enjoyed it. In fact she was having such a good time smiling and cooing that she (we) made a real mess. I just had to get pics to send her Mommy at work to tell her what a good girl J.S. had been. I thought you might enjoy them too!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Sausage rolls

We're having another beautiful fall day in Western NY! It's hard to believe the weather man is calling for snow this weekend. I washed my front windows and put up the storms this am just in case. There is so much to do to get ready for winter that I try to do a little every day.

I thought some of you might be interested in the recipe for sausage rolls. My Mom got this several years ago from a neighbor who had been a cook in the Army.
The dough is Bisquick. I use the recipe for biscuits but add about 1/4 cup more bisquick so it rolls easier. It will take a couple batches to make 2 lbs. of meat.The filling is just your favorite bulk pork sausage with equal part ground beef. I don't add any seasoning because the pork is usually well seasoned. Roll the dough about 1/8 in. thick. Cut into squares and add an elongated meatball of filling.

Fold in the ends and wrap the meat with the dough. Place on an ungreased cookie sheet.

Bake at 350 degrees for thirty minutes. Remove from cookie sheet immediately and place on a wire rack. Enjoy!

Monday, October 09, 2006

A Glorious Day

The color this week is goldenrod. This was growing by the creek. The crayon color doesn't really look like this but I figured I had about every yellow color covered with the next two pictures!

We had a wonderful day at Allegheny! The weather was beautiful and almost too warm for a fall day. We had tons of food and then we went for a long walk as the guys played frisbee golf and looked for crayfish. My two guys are living proof that you can still have fun playing in the creek even if you are over thirty! I can't think of a better way to spend a day than with my family in such a gorgeous setting!

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Fall Picnic Fare

My kids and I have been going on a fall picnic to Alleghany State Park with my aunt and cousins for about 25 years. We go every year on Columbus Day, rain or shine (or snow, at least once!) . We've had as many as 25 ( not counting the racoon family one year!) but the count is getting smaller as my cousins kids go to college. marry or move away. My kids and their spouses take the day off work and wouldn't miss it ! So many of our family traditions had to stop for one reason or another, so I am determined to keep this one alive. We're all excited about J.Shea's first year!
We all bring any food we want, but once you bring something people like they tend to expect it to become a staple.Today is "get ready day" so I will spend some time cooking.
I always make my first chili of the season,

and usually bring sausage rolls

and "Gramma crackers" (actually oyster nibbles but my Mom always brought them, thus the name).

The weather looks like it is going to be great. I hope I'll have lots of pictures to share.