Friday, December 31, 2010

Chest of Drawers

My grandson aka Granny's Love wanted his room decorated with cars and race type logos. I took his chest of drawers and painted it black on the sides and top and white on the drawers. Then I painted "roads" across all the drawers. Since he had lots of the McDonald's Happy Meal cars from the movie CARS, I took the cars and replaced all the drawer pulls with those Happy Meal cars.  It transformed the chest of drawers into a really cute new look for his room.

His room had two huge windows. I made curtains out of cars themed bed sheets and the valance out of the pillow cases. It was cheaper than buying enough ready made curtains for all those windows. Then from the party store we got the checker flag banners and stapled up around the entire top of his wall. After adding posters and other accents he had a custom decorated room for a money saving value.

Make a comment and share your money saving decorating ideas.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Reuse Altoids Tins

I just hate throwing anything away that might be reused or turned into something useful. I love Altoids mints and seem to accumulate the empty tins. I decided they had to be used for something! First I spray painted them silver. Then I looked in my craft supplies to find some way to decorate the tins. I came up with some foam sticker letters and some "jewels" to put on the silver tins. Since I had these things left over from other projects, I did not spend more money to decorate them. This is a photo of the Altoids tins I decorated, but this would be a great project for children.

I made one for my granddaughter to toss in her bag or the glove box in her car. I filled it with nail clippers, nail file, replacement nails and nail glue. Another one I filled with emergency sewing supplies: thread, needles, buttons, safety pins and a seam riper to cut the thread. I thought it would be a great way to take a tiny first aid kit in the suitcase, car, purse or desk drawer. I added asprin, antacid, allergy pills, band aids, and wipes. Since I buy packages of loose cough drops I used one to keep the cough drops. Candy corn? How did that get in there? As you can see these Altoids tins would be good for a variety of small things on the go.

The tins could be painted any color and decorated with all kinds of stickers, jewels or paint your own design on them. They would be cool painted with your school colors and kept in a school locker or book bag. Just remember if you have things like Altoids tins try to reuse them.

Make a comment on this post and let me know other ways I can use Altoids tins.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Cat is Ready to Go!

Callie Ann hates it when we get the suitcase out, because she knows we are packing to leave. This time before we left for the holidays she did not pay much attention to what we were doing. She did get up and walk around on top of the suitcase a couple of times.

After we returned from being gone for four days, and was unpacking the suitcase Callie Ann got in the suitcase to let us know that she was ready for the next trip. If we were going to go she was going to go with us.

Four days to be alone with Lizzie Tu was just too much for Callie Ann. She is the older cat and does not like the responsibility of watching out for Lizzie Tu. Yes, they did have our granddaughter checking on them which Lizzie Tu loved. Callie Ann is our cat who does not like other people, so I am sure she hid under the bed. Callie Ann is also the cat who gets up here and tries to help me type by walking on the keyboard.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Oklahoma Dashboard View

Oklahoma is going to be a great state when they get it finished! No matter what time of year or what Oklahoma highway you travel, it is very likely you will encounter new roads being built or the existing road being repaired. People often joke about these orange cones being the official tree of Oklahoma. On a recent trip I could not resist taking a couple dashboard view photos.
It seems to take forever to build a new strip of highway. I admire the workers who are out there risking life and limb to provide us with these roads to travel. My pet peeve is the drivers who do not slow down to the posted speeds in the work zones. And the dummies who try to pass when it clearly says no passing on the signs.
As I passed the porta-potty, I had another thought about how these workers endure the gaudawful weather extremes building these roads. How they have to use those porta-potties! Yuk!! They do not get paid nearly enough.
Next time you are going through one of these work zones be thankful that those workers are out there trying to make a better place for you travel.
My husband told me he thinks dashboard view photography is probably as dangerous as texting while driving. But, I did not take my eyes off the road I told him.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Real Tools!

Granny's Love has gotten into his Poppy's tools since he was old enough to walk. This year we decided he was old enough to have his own tool box. When he opened this present he just squealed...Granny it's REAL TOOLS! It was a good thing he had already opened his other gifts, because when he saw the tools that was all he was interested in from that point on.

His REAL TOOL BOX contained a variety of screw drivers, measuring tape, hammer, flashlight and batteries. It wasn't a lot, but he thought it was the most wonderful thing ever. He loves to "fix" things and now he has his own tools.

He also got four new DS games, cars, clothes, a new coat, a backpack, books, bath colors, bubbles and a bank with money. The REAL TOOLS excited him the most and made my eyes water when he told me "Granny this was the best Christmas ever."

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas


What is the meaning of Christmas to you?
The birth of Jesus, or just a day to get through!
We all view Merry Christmas in a personal way,
Regardless, we celebrate on this special day.

For some it is the true meaning and they pray,
Others it means a day for the family to play.
The wise men brought gifts for the newborn,
Now, it is gifts under the tree on Christmas morn.

Some tell us we must say Happy Holidays,
Because, others celebrate in different ways.

Kawanza, Hanukkah and Feliz Navidad too,
Celebrate your way, just do not criticize what I do.

My joy is watching the little ones eyes so bright,
When they see the gifts and squeal with delight.

Giving to others is the true meaning for me,
The laughter, smiles and pleasure I wait to see.

Taking photos, that for years I can take a look,
And the fun arranging them in a scrapbook.

The meaning of Christmas is a beautiful thing,
Celebrate for the happiness it will always bring.

Merry Christmas to everyone far and near,
Enjoy by loving those that make your life dear.

By BKWilliams 2010

Note: this blog has a mind of its own when it comes to spacing :(
I have tried over and over to space my poem and it will not let me :(

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Fried Fish & Hush Puppies

Fried fish is such a wonderful meal. Just serve with hush puppies and coleslaw. Years ago my boss would go fishing and bring me a mess of Perch fillets. His secret for having wonderful tasting fried fish was to soak the fish fillets in 7-UP for at least a half hour before cooking. I tried it and it works. The fish in these photos are Rainbow Trout caught by my Mom and cooked by my husband. He simply coats each piece in corn meal mix and fries in hot oil until golden brown. My husband's favorite is fried Catfish. My favorite is any kind that someone else has cooked.


1 1/2 cups white or yellow corn meal
1/2 cup all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
vegetable oil for deep fat frying

Pour oil into deep fat fryer or 2-quart saucepan; heat to 375 degrees.
While oil is heating, combine corn meal, flour, baking powder and salt in medium bowl.
Add milk, egg and onion; mix well.
Drop by rounded teaspoonsfuls into deep, hot oil.
Fry only a few at a time until golden, about 3 to 4 minutes.
Turn once with slotted spoon for best browning.
Remove from oil; drain on several layers of paper towels.

When I was young my Uncle Ralph and Aunt Flarence Ella would take me to the lake with them. They had a old school bus that my Uncle Ralph had converted into a super neat motor home. I can remember me and Uncle Ralph catching fish and Aunt Flarence Ella cooking them with hush puppies that very night for supper. There is something about the taste of fresh fish that just can't be compared to anything else. I can still smell and taste that beautiful memory.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Bottle Lid Checker Pieces

I have a bowl I toss my 2 liter Diet Mt. Dew bottle lids in, because I just know someday I will figure out a craft project for those lids. I've seen magnets, pin cushions, and a few other things using the bottle lids. Well, the other day I received one of those junk mail treasures in the mail. The junk mail contained 24 winter theme stickers. I tossed the rest of what ever was in the envelope in the trash.

I counted out 24 bottle lids from my stash. Then I pained the edge of 12 of them with red acrylic paint. You could use a sharpie or nail polish or what ever you have on hand. While those were drying I cut those square stickers into round circles (mostly round..LOL) to fit the top of the bottle lids. Then I applied the stickers to the top of the lids.
Winter themed "checkers."
I have a bowl full of these green 2 liter bottle lids, so if you have crafty ideas for using them please share by leaving a comment on this blog post.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Shopping Carts

Sylvan Goldman owned the Humpty Dumpty Supermarket chain in Oklahoma City. He noticed that his customers only bought the amount of merchandise they could carry in the hand-held shopping baskets provided at the store. He came up with the idea for creating a portable cart that could hold much more merchandise. He put a large basket on top of a folding chair type frame and attached wheels. The new shopping cart could be wheeled down the aisles of the supermarket and hold a lot more stuff.
Sylvan started using the shopping carts in his store on June 4, 1937. He applied for a patent on March 14, 1938 and the patent was granded on April 9, 1940. He became a multimillionaire from the royalties paid for each shopping cart manufactured during the 17 years the patent was valid.
When he got older he donated funds to build the Sylvan N. Goldman Center of the Oklahoma Blood Institute.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Bath Soap Pieces

Ok what do you do with the end pieces of the bar of bath soap. I know...I know...toss them in the trash! I use to do that too until one day I discovered that my grandson aka "Granny's Love" preferred the little tiny pieces of soap for his bath. So, we started dropping the pieces in a plastic cup on the end of the bathtub. I looked around the other day and discover that we had two cups full of tiny end pieces of bath soap. I decided to make him some special soap!
I put the pieces in a glass bowl. I had to chop a few of them to make a smaller piece.
Then I put a little water in the bowl and let them soak for a bit. Next I put the bowl in the microwave and heated the soap pieces for one minute and stirred them. I repeated the process until I had heated and stirred for three minutes.
Next I mashed the sofened soap pieces with the potato masher. I should have used the electric mixer. Then I spread the mashed soap in a pie pan, and let it cool until firm enough to cut out shapes with cookie cutters.

Then I took a couple of cookie cutters and cut out "fish soap" shapes from the former soap pieces.
First, I cut out four fish and then I repressed the soft soap pieces out again until I could cut more "fish soap" shapes. I ended up with seven soap fish! Then I really got goofy and poked my finger in for a eye and "cut" a mouth for the fish.
The final step is to lay the fish soap, or what ever shape you make, out somewhere to completely dry and harden enough for bath time. This might be a fun project for the kids when they are out of school for the holiday break.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Outdoor Decorations

Ever notice how most of our outdoor Christmas decorations are lighted and only show up at night. My daughter and I made some "Cinnamon Candy Decorations" to put on her house that show the holiday spirit in the daytime. These cinnamon candies were quick and easy. We both like fun decorations.
We used 2 plastic paper plate holders placed together (with the tops together.)
Then we wrapped the paper plate holders in aluminum foil.
Next we took red cellophane paper,
(purchased in a roll like wrapping paper at the super store)
and wrapped around the plate holders leaving long enough ends to look like wrapped candy.
We taped the seam with scotch tape so it would not come apart.
We tied each end with silver curly ribbon.
Next we taped bread ties to the back so they could be hung on her porch posts.
This was the only close up photo I could find.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Oklahoma Map Game

Road trips are always part of the holiday season, if you have children this is a easy way to teach them a little geography and keep them entertained at the same time. Obtain a map of your state or a Road Atlas. Free state maps are easy to find. I also found a US Road Atlas that was especially made for children and already has activities included in the atlas.

If using the free state map, print off a list of places for the children to find on the map and give them a marker to circle their finds. I think it is fun to look for GIRL AND BOY NAMES on a map. They can also mark along the route of travel as you pass the next town, etc. it gives them something else to look for on a long trip.

Making up sentences using town names is another fun way to use a map. For example: Forty One Buffalo Lookout Four Corners of the Greenfield. The underlined bold words are all names of towns on the Oklahoma map. There are lots of activities to do with a map or atlas, have fun making up things to teach and entertain.

Part of the GIRLS and BOY TOWN NAMES found on the STATE OF OKLAHOMA map:

Ada Adamson Alma Afton Alva Albert Amber Alex Amorita Allen Ashland Armstrong Aydelotte

Asher Babbs Avery Belva Beckett Bernice Boyd Bessie Braden Bethany Bradley Blair Byron

Blanch Calvin Calera Carter Carmen Chester Chelsea Clayton Cheyenne Clinton Christie

Colbert Clarita Cole Cleora Cookson Corinne Cordell Courtney Crawford Coweta Curtis Creta

Dale Daisy Damon Dela Dane Edith Darwin Eufaula Davis Eva Dempsey Fay Dewey Francis

Douglas Gay Drake Gerty Duke Hanna Duncan Helena Durwood Henryetta Dustin Inola Eason

Isabella Eddy Jesse Edmond Joy Eldon Kinta Elliott Lacey Elmer Laverne Emet Lela Erick

Lula Fallon Marletta Farris Martha Finley Maud Fletcher May Frederick Mazie Garvin Nida

Grady Octavia Graham Oleta Grant Olive Grayson Oneta Harris Paden Haskell Page Hester

Ramona Hoyt Rhea Hunter Roberta Jay Rose Jet Salina Kenton Savanna Lamar Sharon

Lamont Stella Lane Velma Logan Vera Luther Vian Mason Vinita Perry Vivian Porter Wadena

Preston Wanette Reed Weleetka Spencer Wyandotte Stanley Wynona Thomas Zena Wayne

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Birthday Photos

Granny's Love and Sugar Kisses took me out for my birthday to my favorite Chinese restaurant! My husband snapped these photos after we got back home to document the happy occasion. I know I am getting older, but I realize it more everyday by watching these two loves of my life growing up so fast. When my grand daughter was little we called her Sugar Kisses. It makes me feel guilty to call her that now because we found out she is a Type 1 Diabetic and will spend the rest of her life hooked to an insulin pump. When my grandson was just starting to talk I would ask him who he was and he would tell me Granny's Love. They are both my pride and joy. Spending time with them on my birthday was worth more than any present in the world. Granny's Love likes Chinese food as much as I do so we were both excited!
In years past I could look UP at the camera and rid myself of all those chins...I notice in these doesn't work anymore! LOL

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Crushed Red Pepper

My new favorite spice or seasoning, which ever you might want to call it is CRUSHED or COARSE GROUND RED PEPPER. It is not just for pizza anymore!

According to CAIN'S RED PEPPER container which says "Go easy with this "fiery" spice. a must for Mexican style dishes and adds zing to soups, casseroles, stews, and meat sauces. Great in spaghetti, pizza, and other Italian dishes. Add to egg mix for real deviled eggs." Ingredients: Red Pepper (Cayenne) For those of you who do not know Cain's Coffee Company out of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma packages a large variety of food items.

I agree with all the uses it notes on the Cain's Red Pepper container. I have always put the red pepper flakes on my pizza. I also have discovered a couple shakes of red pepper flakes makes ordinary brown pinto beans taste extra special. A few shakes on top of a roast cooking in the oven adds a little extra flavor.

Red pepper flakes have no sugar, no carbohydrates, no fat, no sodium, no calories! Red pepper flakes are simply a power punch of flavor. Try a shake or two on your next main dish.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Historic Rock Bluff School

This wonderful old rock school building is located on the grounds of the Old Town Museum, which is on Historic Route 66 in Elk City, Oklahoma.

It is worth a trip to Western Oklahoma to see what a great job the people in Elk City have done in creating the Old Town Museum site with all the historic buildings and furnishings.

They have furnished the inside of the Rock Bluff School to allow people to step inside and see through the glass wall what the classroom looked like back in the day.

Minus the pot belly wood heating stove, this is very much what the classrooms looked like when I was in school. It was exciting to get the first classroom desks, with actual chairs not the fold up bench seat attached to the desk behind.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Callie Ann cat tails

Callie Ann our calico barn cat, turned queen of the house, has a new game. One day I had tossed my afghan from my chair to the love seat...big mistake. Callie Ann decided that the afghan was hers and she loves it even as much as I do. She hides under the end of it and then pounces out at our other cat Lizzie Tu. She slaps unsuspecting feet that might pass near the afghan edge. She takes long cat naps under there too. These photos are of Callie Ann "hiding" under her afghan.
She makes us laugh when she gets under the afghan. Sometimes when she is hiding her long plume tail is sticking out and Lizzie Tu will pounce on it to let Callie Ann know she has been found. They are like two little kids when they are playing, because they first play and then fuss. This beautiful long hair calico barn cat is certainly glad the grand kids picked her out of the litter to become the queen.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Redneck Christmas Tree

This is the result of watching one of those Christmas craft shows and nothing better to do on a Saturday afternoon. Redneck Christmas Tree. To make gather 13 green plastic coat hangers, 14 gold plastic Christmas balls, some red curly ribbon, florist wire or bread ties. Tie the coat hangers together in the shape of a Christmas Tree. Then tie on the gold balls and curly ribbon for decoration. If you wanted to make it fancier you could string it with Christmas lights. The result is a durable outdoor decoration that is very inexpensive to make. The bent mini blinds are from the cats pulling them back and poking their heads through them.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


Spring and fall has always been a fun time for me. I have either entered Arts Festivals or just gone to them and enjoyed looking at the art on display. I was not able to participate this year. I want to share some of the photographs I have previously entered in area Fine Arts Shows. The first photo is a photograph I won Third Place Fine Arts! First and Second places were won by professional photographers. I was very honored to bring home Third Place.

More photos on display at Fine Art Show...

The next photo is photography and a graphite drawing.

This photos shows photography and watercolors.

Hope you have enjoyed my mini-art show!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Watch Your Potassium Levels

Did you know that POTASSIUM helps keep your brain, nerves, heart and muscles functioning normally?
Did you know a diet that includes foods rich in POTASSIUM works to help lower blood pressure?
Did you know that POTASSIUM helps boost bone strength and it helps to reduce the risk for kidney stones?

According to the article I read on WebMD, by Elizabeth M. Ward, MS, RD, adults should have 4,700 milligrams of dietary potassium per day as part of a balanced diet.

I do not generally get into reading such articles, but for some reason this one caught my attention. I have heard of people nearly going into cardiac arrest because there potassium levels were too low. Anyone taking diuretics really needs to be careful with their potassium levels! Lately I have known a couple of people who were suffering from kidney stones...yes suffering something awful! I thought this information was important enough to pass on to you!

Here’s how many milligrams (mg) of potassium you'll get from these potassium-rich foods:
Winter squash, cubed, 1 cup, cooked: 896 mg
Sweet potato, medium, baked with skin: 694 mg

Potato, medium, baked with skin: 610 mg

White beans, canned, drained, half cup: 595 mg

Yogurt, fat-free, 1 cup: 579 mg

Halibut, 3 ounces, cooked: 490 mg

100% orange juice, 8 ounces: 496 mg

Broccoli, 1 cup, cooked: 457 mg

Cantaloupe, cubed, 1 cup: 431 mg

Banana, 1 medium: 422 mg

Pork tenderloin, 3 ounces, cooked: 382 mg

Lentils, half cup, cooked: 366 mg

Milk, 1% low fat, 8 ounces: 366 mg

Salmon, farmed Atlantic, 3 ounces, cooked: 326 mg

Pistachios, shelled, 1 ounce, dry roasted: 295 mg

Raisins, quarter cup: 250 mg

Chicken breast, 3 ounces, cooked: 218 mg

Tuna, light, canned, drained, 3 ounces: 201 mg
Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)

If you are taking any medications you need to ask your doctor or pharmacist how those medicines might affect the potassium levels in your body.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Easy to Make Yarn Holder

Do you knit or know someone who knits? This craft project is easy and helpful to keep that knitting yarn from getting in a tangled mess.

Take an empty oatmeal container. Make a hole in the top of the lid large enough for the yarn to come through.
Cover the oatmeal container with scrapbook pages or heavy wrapping paper. You will need to measure around the container. My container was the 42 ounce size, so I used two scrapbook pages to cover this oatmeal container. I glued the pages to the container with Elmer's craft bond all purpose glue stick. I love glue sticks!

Please leave a comment on this post and share other ideas using oatmeal containers.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Post Shopping/Thanksgiving

Our Thanksgiving was great. We made reservations at Ingrid's Kitchen in Oklahoma City and enjoyed dinner with our daughter, my husband's boss and her husband. Before going to dinner on Thanksgiving, our daughter and I went on the first bargain hunting shopping trip for Christmas gifts.
On Friday morning we hit our first store at 5:00 am and loaded up on some really good deals.
Next we picked up my husband's boss and took her Christmas shopping. In the middle of the day we picked up my husband, at our daughter's house, and took him to get a piece of equipment fixed for one of his clients. While we were gone he had boiled a whole chicken, so we made a pan of chicken and cornbread dressing for him to bake while we were gone on  the next shopping trip. Our final shopping of the day was the grocery store, to purchase supplies to make chili for supper. Our daughter also made the best deviled eggs. Crazy menu....chicken and dressing, deviled eggs and chili! Plus, pecan pie with chocolate chips, sweet potato pie and peppermint pie. I will tell you about these pies in future blogs.
On Saturday we decorated our daughter's house inside and outside for Christmas. Here is a photo of my husband with the lights we are about to hang across the front of her porch. Note that he is in shorts and barefoot...the weather was just beautiful! We also wrapped all the Christmas presents we purchased the two days before. Our Christmas shopping and decorating are done for 2010!
This is how the decorations look as night begins to fall.
This photo shows my husband sitting on the porch admiring our Christmas decorating at "the baby's" house. With our jobs done, we headed west to go home and love two cats who were missing us.