Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Cold Remedy

It's that time of the year...

It's the cold and flu season!

Yes, it's here weather we want it to or not!

I thought I would share with you my family's trick for cutting a cold, and especially those running noses, in half.  The best part of this trick is that it is really inexpensive and it is something that you can use everyday if you want and it will stop those nasty sinus infections that often come with those cold viruses!

It is NeilMed Sinus Rinse  This is a remedy that my allergist highly recomended to me a few years ago.  I would get a small cold that would become a sinus infection and/or would end up in my chest.  Having asthma and getting mucus in my chest does not mix!  I needed something that would get the mucus out of my sinuses so that it would not build up into an infection or travel into my chest.

I started using the NeilMed Sinus Rinse with the idea that it wouldn't help much.

It was awlfu!

You are putting warm salt water up your nose!  Just gross and plain old awlful!!

I thought I was going to die the first time I used it!  I couldn't believe that I was actually volunteering to put something up my nose!

But you just wouldn't believe what came out!  Some of the grosses stuff!  That nasty stuff that had my nose stopped up and was running down into my chest.

As much as I hated it, I did the treatment two and sometimes three times a day.  Within about 3 days, I was able to breath and my sinus infection was clearing up.  I wasn't getting the nasty mucus in my chest like I normally did and I was feeling so much better!

I was shocked!  It was even getting easily to put that awlful stuff up my nose!  I was even starting to look forward to it!

Now whenever I start to get a runny nose or I start to get a sore throat, I start using my NeilMed Sinus Rinse.  It may not stop my cold, but it sure puts a dent in it!!

I even started using it on my boys.  Neither enjoys it, but my oldest has started asking for me to fix it for him if he gets a runny nose.  The youngest doesn't like it, but he will let us use it on him.  It sometimes takes two of us to hold him but he gets over it really quickly when he is able to breath after we clean out his nose.

I cannot recommend this enough!!

In my opinion, this is one of those "no home should be without" things!  It has been a wonderful and frugal addition to my medicine cabinet and winter survival kit!  If I have a lot of kids at school coughing and blowing thier noses, I find myself using the NeilMed Sinus Rinse on a daily basis.  I do believe that it has saved me from getting more than one cold (along with lots of hand washing!)!

If you and your family have not tried this, I challenge you to give it a try!  The cost of the NeilMed system is much less than a doctor's visit and antibodics for sinus infections!

If you have tried this, share your experiences with us and how you feel about using this type of frugal cold remedy....

Click on NeilMed Sinus Rinse and become a friend on their Facebook page.  They have an offer for a free rinse bottle when you become a fan!  Then you can order the Sinus Rinse Refill Packets from Amazon--this is a great price too!

**This post is solely my opinion.  I was not contacted by NeilMed Sinus Rinse to write this post nor did I recieve any compensation for it.  This is soley for the benefit of my groupies as I am sharing my experiences with them.

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Monday, November 29, 2010

I Thought This Day Would Never Come...

I never thought this day would come!  When I started my blog adventure, I thought it would be years be for I got to this place!

All the other bloggers were already there, it seemed.  Most were getting there in less than a year.

It was taking me what seemed like FOREVER!!

Was I EVER going to make it into that elite group of bloggers?

Well, now I am!

I am now happy to say that I am a blogger with...

Get ready for it...

I am now a blogger with 100 GROUPIES!!!

I must thank all my "groupies" for becoming my mass of bloggy followers who come back to this little place on the internet!


I really thought it was going to take me two or more years to get this many followers, but in less than a year I'm here with your help!  It has made my Thanksgiving Holiday even more special!

God Bless you all and I look forward to reading all your "comment love"!

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Thursday, November 25, 2010

Daddy's Thanksgiving Tradition

On this day of Thanksgiving I thought I would share with you a tradition that my Daddy started back in the early 80's.

My Daddy loved to cook, especially bar-b-que.  He had a dream of having his own bar-b-que pit.  So while Daddy travel the state as a union representative, whenever he saw a sign that said bar-b-que, he stopped.

He would order something to eat and then asked to see the pit.  He would ask what they liked about their pit and what they would change.  Then he would ask to take pictures of the pit.

After about 5 years of traveling and getting all types of ideas, Daddy found an idea he wanted to try.  He got with a neighbor, Bud Williams, and together the two of them came up with an awesome pit that they built in an old garage.

This is the pit.  The fire is in the big black thing, called the fire pit, in the front of the picture.  The smoke is pulled through the block structure behind it and up the chimney.

The pit was a true smoker, cooking meat slowly but without the drying effect of meat cooked over a fire.  So Daddy decided to smoke turkeys for family and friends one Thanksgiving.  They were such a hit that a tradition was born

Under the silver lids is where the meat is placed on racks.   We allow the meat to brown and then we warp the meat in tin foil which holds in the moister and keeps the meat from drying out.

The tradition continued until Daddy got sick.  Hubby and I decided to take over the tradition.  So before Daddy's passing, we talked him into letting us do a Thanksgiving cook. He supervised and we did the work!

This is our work bench where we get the meat ready for the pit and our "sink" where we clean up.  If you with note, the sink is an old bath tub!  The hot water tank on the right of the picture holds hot water from the pit.  It circulates around the back of the fire box where it is heated and then is held in the hot water heater until it is needed.

Ever since we have tried to keep the tradition alive by firing up the pit every Thanksgiving and Christmas, while occasionally other times of the year.  This year we cooked about 80 pieces of meat--turkeys, Boston butts, picnic shoulders, brisket, and whole hams.

I didn't get a picture of what the turkeys look like but I did get this picture of how good the Boston butts look!

It's a lot of work, but it's a time that I really enjoy.  It is a time for me to remember the man I miss so much.  Many of the people who we cook for were friends or co-workers with my Daddy.  As they all come to pick up, we share all types of special memories of my Daddy.  It helps to keep his memory alive for me and especially my boys!

Our Thanksgiving Day is usually spent cleaning up and just recovering from the 24 hour cook!  We are not much for eating turkey or ham, especially after cooking as many as we do!

So I want to take this time to thank all of you for reading and especially the comment love so many of you share with me on a daily bases!  I thank God each day for each of you in my life! 

Thanks again for stopping by....

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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Wordless Wednesday...Write the Comment

For a little twist on the tipical Wordless Wednesday, I thought it would be fun if you left a comment as to what you think Hamp is saying to his big brother.

Let the comment fun begin...

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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

My OMG Moment (This Week)

Today, I learned that Hamp has discovered a new trick...

I noticed that Hamp had been quiet.  This is NEVER a good sign.  It means that something is happening that may not need to happen!

When I went to investigate, I found Hamp squating with his hand down the front of his pants.  Then I noticed he started staring at his diaper.

What was he doing?

So I get closer....

That's when I found out what he was doing!

He had pulled his "wee, wee" up and out of his diaper (by undoing the diaper, no less!).  He was peeing all over himself and the floor!!

Oh yes, he did it!  He really did do it!  He peed all over the front of his diaper, pants and the floor!


This means we are getting ready for potty training and we're not even two!!


Where in the world did he learn how to do this??


Just how do I keep from laughing...

Is this really my kid.....

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Friday, November 19, 2010

Our Natural Popcorn

This summer we grew some popcorn.  Yes, real popcorn!

We pulled the cobs and let them dry in the barn.  Hubby shelled the cobs and came in with a bowl full of popcorn!

He had to sift out the hucks and pieces of the cob as well as any other trash.

When he finished, we had a bowl full of natural popcorn!

We put it in the mircowave....

It popped better than any we have ever bought and had a great taste!

There is nothing like growing your own snacks! So bring on the movies....


Join me for Follow Me Friday blog hop and find some new bloggy friends!

And don't forget to vote...

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Thursday, November 18, 2010

Old Man Frost and Ornamental Sweet Potato

Old man frost has shown himself to my flower garden.  He has changed my lush summer garden to the restful winter garden.

One plant that I will miss is my ornamental sweet potato, Ipomoea batatas.  This is a vigorous plant that is grown not for the potatoes but for the colorful vine.

This is what it looked like in August.  This is just one plant!  I just love the color which is called, Margarita.

Ornamental sweet potatoes do best in full sun but will take some shade.  It does well in dry climates with little water and can grow in just about all but really wet soil types.

Now you are wondering why in the world is she telling us about a plant that we don't plant until spring?

Well, when old man frost came the other day, he killed my ornamental sweet potato. 

Looking closer, I noticed potatoes coming up from the ground.

Now the neat thing is that you can cook these potatoes (even though they are not that good).  Many gardeners will dig the potatoes up and cook 'em up for dinner.

But I like to do something else with my potatoes.

I store them in a cool dry place and will use them next spring to plant around in my flower beds!

It's a great frugal way to start your own plants for your summer flower garden.  You can even give them as gifts to friends!

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Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Cabinet Boy

Wordless Wednesday....

Look where I found Hamp....

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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Homemade Syrup

My family loves pancakes!

So the other day I fixed blueberry pancakes.  When I went to get the syrup out of the cabinet, I found that we only had enough syrup for one person!  How could we eat pancakes without syrup?

I remembered that I had seen somewhere a recipe for homemade syrup.  I found the recipe and made some for us. 

They loved it!  And I was saved from being a really bad mom by not having syrup for the family favorite!

I was shocked at how simple and cheap it was!

Homemade Syrup

1 3/4 c. white sugar
1/4 c. brown sugar
1 c. water
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. maple flavoring

Combine sugar and water in saucepan.  Boil for 1 to 3 minutes until it is the right thickness.  Then add flavorings and serve.

When I realized just how easy this was I decided to see how cheap it was.  So here is the breakdown.

Store bought syrup...........24 oz.........................$1.49
Homemade syrup.............24 oz.........................$0.60


This may not seem like a lot, but when you buy about 6 to 10 bottles a year it adds up!  Plus I know what's going into the syrup.

Check it out and let me know what you think...

Check out this blog hop if you got time too....

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Monday, November 15, 2010

Pioneer Day

I'm a firm believer that we must remember our past to embrace our future.  I have shared with you, my groupies, a lot of the neat old farm shows that my family and I participate.  Click hereAnd hereAnd here.

Our sons are well traveled and well versed in how things were done on the farm 50 to 100 years ago. Click here. My son is always sharing with his friends and teachers a lot of the neat things that he has seen and experienced.

Many of my sons classmates have never experienced the chance to sit on a tractor, milk a goat, see how corn is shelled from the cob or ride in a horse drawn wagon.

Friday at Big A Elementary they did!

It was Pioneer Day at Big A!

The teachers and students were dressed for the part in their overalls and long pioneer dresses and bonnets.

They got to see how to crank a tractor my hand and sit on a tractor.

They got to see how to make their own pottery.

They got to see how to use a cross cut saw.

They got to see a corn sheller work.

They got to see how hard it was to get seeds out of a cotton boll.

They got to hear music played on a bow saw.

They learned about the Cherokee Indians.

They ate stew cooked over an open fire.

They got to see how to milk a goat.

The most important thing is these students experienced things that many of them would have never experienced if the teachers and administration of Big A didn't feel it was important for these kids to learn about their history.

As educators we are so busy trying to teach so our students will pass a test that we forget there are other lessons that we need to be exposing our students to!

Pioneer Day was one of those days we got to expose students to their history that may not be in a book but is still important.  They were exposed to real life!

Do you feel we need to do more things like this in our schools or just teach what they need to know for state tests? Share your comments...

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Friday, November 12, 2010

Will You Take the Challenge?

I have a framed collage of pictures in my house that warrants a lot of comments whenever we have vistors. 

It's a picture from my grandmother's house.  It's one my daddy put together for her.

These are my grandmother's three boys and her grandchildren. 

The reason for this collage was put together is so that my grandmother could not only show off her children and grandchildren, but she could show how much alike all of us look!  She would go through her pictures and always had to look twice to make sure she didn't mix us all up!

I thought I would have a little fun and challenge my groupies! 

See if you can use a picture of my boys and figure out which picture is me and which is my daddy! 

A big hint is that there are only two girls in the collage!

Good luck!

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Thursday, November 11, 2010

Thank a Veteran Today!

Sixty years old, young men found their way to Toccoa, Georgia.  They arrived by steam train, marched passed a casket factory, and two large cemeteries and asked themselves what had they volunteered for!

They were the first men to test a new concept in military strategy...

These men trained to jump out of perfectly good airplanes behind enemy lines!  Not real smart.  But for many of these men it paid better and what else did they have to loose.  They came from all over the country, poor and rich, educated and uneducated, but all were patriotic and willing to fight for their country.

They came and trained, trained hard!  It was that training--3 miles up, and 3 miles down--that saved many of them from certain death!

These men and their struggles have been immortalized in movies like "Band of Brothers" and "Saving Private Ryan".

These movies show the heroism that these men showed in the line of fire.  But it was there ability to come back after 3 or 4 years of brutal fighting and war that made them true heroes in my eyes.

For the last nine years, our community has paid tribute to these men and others that fought in to keep our country free.  The first week in October, the men who trained at Camp Toccoa and ran Currahee Mountain (3 miles up, 3 miles down) twice everyday are welcomed for the Camp Toccoa Reunion Weekend.

My family and I have participated the last 5 years.  Our participation has allowed us to meet these men and learn just how much of heroes they became! 

I wanted to take the opportunity to thank them publicly and let you meet them too.  They have become part of our families lives and we look forward to them coming back "home" every year.  But as the years go by, we see less and less of them. 

These are two of my favorite vets:  Jake McNiece (left) and Reed Pelfery (right).  Both of these men were pathfinders, meaning they were the first on the ground setting up for other paratroopers to come in. They both saw some horrific fighting but also got into some wild adventures! 

Jake's adventures are the basis for the movie "The Dirty Dozen" and boy can he tell some stories!  He is a Native American Indian from Oklahoma who was the original "wild man".  His stories are just unbelievable!  But he has a true soft spot for troubled youth.  He was just like them and it took his service and two wives to settle him into the heroic life he lead.

Reed still lives in Toccoa and is a fixture at the Currahee Military Museum.  He is a gentle man who loves to share his story. He does this to remember the sacrifice of those who didn't come back.  Reed, along with many of the other veterans, say that the real heroes are the ones that never came home.  He also likes to share the stories that make you laugh and let you realize that these men were able to keep a sense of humor in the face of utter horror!

As you go about today, think about the men and women that share their stories so that we don't ever forget the sacrifice of war for our freedom.

Thank a veteran...

And by all means, don't let today go by without teaching your children about the sacrifice that today signifies.

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Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Wordless Wednesday...He Grows Up

It's hard for me to look at pictures like these and realize how much my Knox is growing up!

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Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Pitter Patter of.....

The last few weeks, we have heard the pitter patter of, well let's just say, wishful little feet....

Hamp finds his little feet in everyone's shoes!

Especially his Daddy's...

With the shoes, comes a hat!

And a little boy who finds his pitter patter turning into clumpity, clump...

It's just too cute!

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Monday, November 8, 2010

We Have Not Been Down This Road Before...

Thursday, Hubby and I had to take little Hampy to the doctor.  He woke up in the middle of the night barking like a seal and having a hard time breathing. 

We have been up this road before...

We took him outside.  It was cool and moist.  That helped him get back to sleep and breathing better.

We have been up this road before...

We knew what was wrong before we went to see Dr. Stroud.


We have been up this road before...
The dreaded croup was back!

This is our 3rd or 4th time getting croup since Hamp was born.  Everytime he gets a running nose, it seems like its not more than 24 hours when he comes down barking like a seal!  His coughs are the loudest things, especially in the middle of the night!  They cut through the quiet like a fire alarm.

We have been down this road before...
Cool night air and moister help, but we know that getting meds is the only way to stop it.

When we took Hamp to see Dr. Stroud, she made the same observation we had already made....

Why does Hamp keep getting the croup?

So she made us an appointment with a pediatric pulmonologist in Atlanta.  She thinks that his airway is just too small right now and that he may grow into it later, stopping his boast with the croup.  The other idea is that he might have been born with a small airway that won't get any better on its own, so something might need to be done.  We are going to see what the pulmonologist can tell us more.

We have not been up this road before...
The funny thing is, within 12 hours of having his medicine, you can't even tell Hamp is sick!  He's right back to being the wild and crazy toddler he is!

We have not been up this road before...

Hopefully nothing unusual will be found Tuesday, but it's always in the back of your mind that something is going to be wrong with your baby.

Whatever happens it won't be anything that we can't handle!

We'll just leave everything in God's hands....
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Friday, November 5, 2010

Friday Funnies: Mr. Smiley

...Friday Funnies...

I just wanted to share with you a great picture of Hamp!  He was trying to get Mr. Wayne's hat and I caught this great smile!

Have a great weekend!

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Thursday, November 4, 2010

I Just Need to Vent..

I want to vent....

I have been listening to all the political ads and that they all want to pass a Arizonia imigration law in our state.

I keep asking Why??

We have imigration laws that aren't being enforced.  Why are politians not talking to law enforement and asking them what needs to be done to strengthen these laws?  Why do we need more laws that are not being enforced?

I had an interesting conversation with a friend of mine the other day.  He has a heating and cooling business where he installs heating and air conditioning systems.  He told an interesting story...

A man had called and wanted central air put in his home.  He also wanted the air conditioning unit under the house.  The problem was that he didn't have enough room under the house.  He asked my friend how much room he needed to have.  My friend told him and said he didn't expect to hear from him for a couple of weeks because there was a lot of dirt to move and all of it would have to be dug out by hand!

My friend got a call from the man TWO days later!  When my friend got there, he found that the man had dug the crawl space under the house even deeper than he had suggested!  My friend was floored!  He asked the man, "How did you dig this out so fast?"

He said that he hired three hispanic men who came and hand dug out his crawl space in less than two days time!

My friend and I both stated that this one reason we have so many illegals in this country! 

I watched an investigative report from Fox 5 Atlanta that hit on this too.

This investigation centered on the Delegation of Immigration Authority Section 287(g) Immigration and Nationality Act, known as 287(g).  This allows INS trained local law enforcement personal to charge immigrats who have been arrested with deportation.  This law has helped to deport many crimial iligeal immigrates.
What the report brought out was what I feel we need to be targeting--companies that employ iligeal workers!

It was amazing to see all the employers that illigeal workers reported they worked for!  Why are these companies not doing background checks with law enforcement?

Why are we not fining these companies for hiring illigeals?

I can see how one or two might get through a company's hiring practices.  But when a company has 10 or more illigeal workers, why are we not slamming these companies?

If there were no jobs, don't you think that would stop illigeal workers from coming into this country?

Many are saying that it would help the unemployment rate by hiring legal workers.

But would it....

The sad thing to me is that without illegals I don't know if our legal work force would do the work!

If you go back to the story I started in this post...

You might be able to find someone who would have done what those three hispanic men had done, but they would have not done it in the short amount of time or would have charged an arm and a leg! 

I have known imigrants who have come into our community.  Many of them do jobs that many Americans would NEVER do!  They do it well and effiencently!  All of my hispanic student have had parents that worked two or three jobs.  I know this because of having to schedule parent conferences are difficult because of their schedules.  Most of the kids are hard workers too!

So I have a suggestion...

Either enforce immigration laws on employers and stop hiring illegals or, let's work to make them Americans!

Aren't we all imigrants?

The only true Americans are Native Americans.

This is my idea...

Let's let all illegals register with their local law enforcement and recieve green cards.  Then, for the next 5 years these imigrants will have to find a job, pay taxes (I bet the IRS won't mind making another form!), and not get in trouble with the law!  Then let them become citizens, tax paying citizens!

I know, this may cause a flood of imigration into this country!  It can't be any more than there already are!
I know that there are a lot of people that will disagree with me, but this is my take on this issue.  I feel that if we are really going to stop this influx of illegal immigration we need to stop the cause (hiring illegal workers) or just let all immigrats become American citizens! 

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Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Wordless Wednesday...My Favorite Truck

Nothing like a boy and his truck!

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Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Halloween 2010

We celebrated Halloween all weekend!

First, we had to get ready...

Hamp was a skelton and Knox was a Confedate solider. Knox was too old to have his picture taken in his Halloween costume.

We headed to the Harvest Festival at church.

We got to throw a pie at the preacher.

Then the boys got to play games.

Then we went to the Elk's Lodge to the annual Halloween Carnival.  The boys played more games and got to do some art work.

Then we went Tricker-Treating!

Hamp got scared by any moving Halloween decorations!

But he trooped on...

Both came home with tons of candy!  Much more than they needed!

We also had a hay ride Saturday and did a hay ride for another local church Sunday!  This has been the longest celebration of Halloween I can remember.  We celebrated all weekend!  It will take me all week to recover!

How much did you and your kids celebrate?

Share your stories....

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Monday, November 1, 2010

The Best Birthday Ever!

As I said Friday, my oldest "baby" is now 11 years old!  To celebrate his birthday, he invited some of his friends over to spend the night.

Now if you have kids you know what it's like when you have a house full of boys or girls--wild!!  So with having boys, we decided they needed to sleep outside.  If nothing else, to save mine and my Hubby's sanity!

We set up the tent. 
Gathered and piled up firewood. 
Brought out the cold weather sleeping bags. 
Built a bonfire. 
Bought hot dogs, marshmallow, graham crackers and Hersey's bars.
Bought an ice cream cake....

And had a party to celebrate Knox's 11th birthday...

It took Hubby a while to get the candles to light.

The boys were ready to sing "Happy Birthday".  As a matter of fact, they sang it twice before Hubby got the candles lit!

Knox finally got the chance to blow out his candles!

The boys were boys!  They played all night.  They just about worn out the petal tractors as they rode them all night and the next morning! 

We had a hayride that was a big hit!  The boys wanted to go again about 11:00 pm but Hubby was just too tired to drive all over the homestead again.

This weekend was the first cold weekend we've had this fall.  It got down into the 30s.  So we had the bonfire going really good before we went to sleep so that the boys would have something to help keep them warm.

When we got up, this is what we found...

During the night, the boys had taken coals from the fire and put the under the swing to warm them up as they slept in the swing. 

They had also rolled two logs close together, placed boards on top, and then put hot coals under the boards.  Knox said this was a really warm bed to sleep on!

Now before you say anything, yes they had a tent to sleep in and plenty of warm sleeping bags.  We are talking about boys here!!

But they had a great time...

...and Knox had what he called, "The best birthday ever!"

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