What Kind of Soil DO You Use?

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Whitney Farms for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

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D and I spent all last week in the beautiful weather getting our raised beds ready for our vegetable and flower starts we've been working on in our basement. One of the hardest things for me is to figure out is exactly what kind of soil to use? There are so many choices out there and it's so important that we provide our crops with organic soil,  because hey, what we feed our veggies will feed us in return, right? And we only want the best going into our bodies!

Our raised beds

I recently came across Whitney Farms®, a company with over over 25 years of leading experience in producing organic soil and organic plant food with no additives and nothing artifical. There products offer low to no dust, no strong manure odor (bonus!) and is a special protein-based blend that provides both macro and micronutrients that your veggies need to grow!

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Sounds pretty great huh? They are even offering you all a $3 coupon to try it for yourself! Clink here for Whitney Farms® speacial offer!

I can't wait to see our little starts grow into something incredible beautiful and delicious! I have so many plans for them!

What about you? What are you planting this year? I'd love to hear all about it!

 

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State Artwork

A couple weeks ago I was saw this on a post on The Real Housewives of Bucks County and loved this cute little DIY project! I decided I wanted to do something like this for our home but of course, with  my little spin on it.

Via

Here is my version!

I am from Washington State (just east of Seattle) and D, well he’s lived all over but for the majority of his life, he lived in Las Vegas, Nevada and we came together here about 45 minutes south of Portland in the heart of wine country.

These were pretty darn easy to make and cost me next to nothing. Seriously, no more then $4! I had the paint, the picture frames, the mats and all I needed to buy was the white paper and the color paper for the states!

So here you go, here is how to make your own state wall art!

The frames were originally black and all I did was prime them with white spray paint following that with an off white color spray paint.

Then, cut out the states you want to use in the size you like. I just found various maps on google images in the sizes I wanted. Then trace them with pencil on scrapbook paper or another firm type paper and cut them out.

Next, I glued the white lined paper I purchased onto the mats I already had to add a little texture to the background.

Last, glue the states on the white backing paper wherever you want them and viola, you have a little piece of your love history on your wall!

Have you done anything fun with any of our states?

This project is linked up at the following:

The Shabby Creek Cottage, Delightful Order, Thrifty Decorating, 52 Mantels, The 36th Ave,

The House of Hepworths, The CSI Project , 5D5W, Home Stories A to Z and a few others found here!


The Best Flourless Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies

I’m gonna be honest. I don’t really like my food to have a ton of ingredients in it, especially when I’m baking. I LOVE when whatever I am putting together is quick and easy yet extremely tasty. Call it lazy or just that most days I’m trying to fit in a million things into my ever shortening days.

These guys though, they are quick and easy and so stinkin’ good! I adapted my recipe from my friend Mari’s over at The Unexpected Harvest. She brought them in for people to try one morning and I couldn’t enjoy one because it had eggs. Well, the other day I was having a pretty strong craving for peanut butter cookies and remembered that she had made some a while back that only had a few ingredients in them and as they say, the rest is history!

These cookies are full of everything you’d want from a chocolate chip peanut butter cookie. Tons of peanut butter taste, a hint of chocolate in every bit and best of all, without the flour taste I’m not a big fan of in cookies. I also used turbinado sugar instead of regular sugar and combined with the crunchy peanut butter I used, there was lots of little crunches all through every bit.

Here is what you need and how to make them:

These can be made with or without egg.

1 flax egg (1 tbsp ground flax seed with 3 tbsp water) OR 1 egg

1/2 cup turbinado sugar or regular sugar

1 tsp baking soda

1 cup organic, unsweetened natural crunchy or smooth peanut butter

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup vegan or regular chocolate chips

Sprinkle of sea salt on top

Preheat oven to 35o degrees. In a medium bowl, combine flax egg or egg, sugar, baking soda, and vanilla extract until mixed well. Add peanut butter and chocolate chips until well mixed together.

Roll into balls and gently flatten with a fork if you want the traditional ‘peanut butter cookie’ lines. Add a sprinkle of sea salt to the top and bake for 10 minutes.

Enjoy!

Linked up here, here. and here @ Tessa the Domestic Diva!

Amanda Had A Little Lamb, Little Lamb, Little Lamb…

About five months ago we introduced Goober Jr (or the sperm donor as seen in this post) to our seven ewes and he successfully did his job because on Thursday our first mama delivered the first of his babes! All I have to say is way to go Goobs!

D an I are new to lambing (obviously) and for the last few weeks we have eagerly been awaiting the first of many new additions to our little farm we have going here. We thought Big Mama was going into labor about two weeks ago when D’s parents were in town …but she wasn’t. Ms. White was and she produced not one but TWO beautiful baby girls, Snowflake and Spot. (Snowflake was ALL D pick out. He has such a sweet and sensitive side)

Big Mama

Ms. White

Snowflake

Spot

(because she has a spot on her head and neck)

If you are curious how the delivery went well, she popped them out like the champ she is. I have to admit, I have been so incredibly nervous about the deliveries even going as far as buying shoulder length rubber gloves in case I have to ‘go in’ and assist. Yep, that’s right, I could quite possibly have to become a labor and delivery nurse and I’ve been reading up on what to do. Although I’m not the best under pressure and stress and tend to panic. Anyway, so far no help from mid wife Amanda has really been needed other then to cut the umbilical cord, dip it in iodine and dock the tails. Yes, you read that right. Most sheep aren’t born with that short stubby tail, only certain breeds. When they are right around three days old (and definitely before seven) the Shepard (that’s D and I) has to apply a fairly tight rubber band about one inch down the lambs tail. This shuts off blood supply to the end of the tail and within a week it falls off. We also have to use the same method to castrate the males which has so far only been one…thank God.

In all honesty, if it wasn’t for sanitary reasons we wouldn’t dock the tails and if it wasn’t for the fact that D and I aren’t butchering (for obvious reasons) and we can’t have an un-castarated male running around (for other obvious reasons) D and I wouldn’t do so either. This aspect of farm life is pretty hard on the both of us but we had to remove the emotional aspect and think about what is actually best for the animals in the long run and what their primary purpose is for us. Since we are vegan we no longer plan to butcher but rather use the sheep in the vineyard to ‘mow’ the cover crop and fertilize the soil so to speak. And let’s be honest here, I plan on having a huge flock of sheep as my little pets :)

So back to the delivery. For the past week or so D and I have been doing nightly check ups on the girl which requires us to set an alarm and get up during the middle of the night to go check on the mamas. Since we heard that sheep tend to deliver in the middle of the night because it’s less risky as a prey animal, we just figured ours were like every one else.

Thursday morning I woke early and headed out to the barn around 6am. Usually the girls are still laying around on the hay but this particular morning they were no where to be seen but I thought nothing more of it as we have a pretty big pasture for them to roam. As I was walking back to I spotted the flock off in the distance grazing on the crest of a small hills in the the middle of the pasture and I headed inside.

About fifteen minutes later as I was doing some dishes in the sink I looked out into the distance and notice that I could only see six of the gals. This is somewhat unusual as sheep tend to always stay together as they are prey animals and it’s safer in a group. Unless they are about to deliver and then they usually go off by themselves to do so. I got a strange feeling in my gut and I yelled up to D that I could only see six of the girls out in the pasture. D put on his boots and headed out to the barn to see if the missing one had found her way back there. I on the other hand ran out to the pasture where the others were. As I approached and realized it was Ms. White who was missing, I noticed her off to the left about 30 feet away. I breathed a sign of relief but suddenly noticed she look a lot skinnier then the day before. That’s when she turned her backside to me and I realized what had happened. Without getting too graphic, it was obvious she had delivered her babe and right as I put two and two together, I saw a little head pop up and my heart dropped into my stomach.

D and I had been preparing for this moment for a long time but the reality of the situation was unlike anything I expected. I was filled with mixed emotions of excitement and fear and as I jumped over the electric fence careful not to scare Ms. White, I called out to D across the field in the barn to get up here now! This wasn’t the ideal situation for lambing. Ms. White had given birth out in the pasture and we needed to get her and the lamb back into the barn into a pen where mother and lamb are suppose to stay for several days to ensure they bond. The only way to do so is carry the lamb back and hope the mom follows. Easy, right?

As D approached the mama got freaked. She was attempting to clean her baby, the beginning of the bonding process, when here comes a predator to snatch up her baby and take it away. D picked up the baby and slowly, making sure Ms. White saw where her baby was going, lead her back down to the barn. This wasn’t as easy as I’m making it out to be of course. A couple times D had to put the lamb down so the Ms. White could run over to it and lick it and make sure it was safe.

Eventually Ms. White and baby were safe and sound in their pen and D left for a very important meeting and I was left with Joel, D’s cousin to watch the mama and baby to ensure that they do in fact bond and that the baby was eating. Sometime after nine-thirty I noticed that Ms. White was starting to act funny. She was pawing at the ground a lot, pointing her nose in the air and grinding her teeth and seemed rather uncomfortable. Remember something I read in one of my sheep books, I realized that Ms. White was having contractions. She was going into labor AGAIN!

Once when I was twenty-two I was invited to be in the room when a close friend of mine was giving birth. I thought hey, why not! This would be a pretty cool thing to witness. Right about the time the head started coming out I ran out of the room with tears in my eyes and called my mom sobbing into the phone that I was never having kids. Well, somehow right as the hooves were coming out of Ms. White I realized there was something in the house that I needed to go get and left Joel to make sure the delivery went okay. (I may have to rethink who will actually be wearing those shoulder length rubber gloves if need be…Mid-Wife Joel?)

Almost three hours after her first baby was born Ms. White gave birth to another little girl! TWINS Snowflake and Spot were brought into this world!

Now D and I knew for sure that it was game time and I cancelled my impending trip to Seattle because I knew that I couldn’t leave during such an incredible time as this. That night we set our alarm clock for two-thirty in the morning and when we went out to the barn, there were no visible signs that any of the other six were going into labor. When I woke again at about six, I threw on my muck boots and headed out there to check again. As I approached the opening of the barn I saw through the wire of the feeder, two little black legs jumping up and down. WHAT?!?! Before I even checked on the mom I ran back inside to get D. He jumped out of bed and we both ran back out to the barn. As I entered the main resting area for the sheep I noticed one of our Jacobs, Doris, lying there with not one baby but TWO! Holy Moly! Two sets of adorable twins! And even more impressive, they were already standing, running around and feeding, and completely cleaned off. She must have gone into labor right after we left in the middle of the night. Amazing.

And without further adue…

Doris

Mimi

and Roger

So, it’s been two days and no sign of the others going into labor. Other then the fact that I seriously can’t imagine how they could get any bigger. They are HUGE! So the countdown is on. Could we get more twins? Triplets? Will I have to assist or will I faint and D or Joel have to jump in and take over. The excitement is almost unbearable!

Who will go next?

To be continued…

Green Pea Guacamole

I believe it’s quite possible that guacamole is one of my all time favorite things to eat. Well, Mexican food is really but guac is part of that and I can seriously eat a whole big, and I mean big bowl all by myself. I have to admit, I have perfected my recipe and every time I go to a party I’m asked to bring the stuff. It’s so stinkin’ good! Let’s be honest though, although avocados are the healthy fat, it’s almost impossible for me to  have the recommended portion, only 2 tablespoons, and i end up eat about ten times that or more!  So when I heard of Green Pea Guacamole I thought I needed to give it a try because for one, it sounds very interesting and two, I can eat the whole bowl guilt free! Yeah! With my impending wedding in less then a month it would be nice to be able to fit in my dress!

I made this the other evening as a little snack for D and I with some homemade baked tortilla chips pictured above. It was a success and although it probably wont replace my famous guacamole recipe, it will be a new welcomed addition to our regular snacks, especially when we are trying to be on the lighter side.

Here is what you’ll need AND how to make it:

Place all these ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth:

One bag of frozen (thawed)green peas

2 tbsp nutritional yeast

1-2 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp lime juice

Pour into a bowl and add these ingredients to taste:

Chopped shallots

Chopped red onion

Chopped garlic

Chopped cherry tomatoes

Chopped Jalapeno

Chopped cilantro

Salt

Pepper

Mix all ingredients together and taste: add more of certain ingredients if you desire.

Serve with homemade baked tortilla chips or on top of whatever you may be eating!

And ENJOY!

Linking up here and here!

Favorite Kitchen Gadgets

There are certain things in our kitchen that I firmly believe neither D nor I could live without and since Kate over at Centsational Girl is having a fun link party today dedicated to all things Kitchen Gadgets I thought I’d join in on the fun and share with you all what our favorites are!

These couple items seriously make our life so much easier when cooking and I believe are necessities in every kitchen!

1. Citrus Juice Press

These things are seriously amazing! I use mine almost everyday and they really make cooking with citrus fruits so much easier!

2. Stainless Steel Tongs

This is something D introduced into my life and I couldn’t cook without them now. They make stir frying so much easier!

3. French Press

Need I say more?

4. Stainless Steel Mixing Bowls

D picked up a few of these from the restaurant supply store in Portland and they are the best. We use them for everything and have almost every size imaginable!

5. Tofu Press

Since we don’t eat meat or dairy tofu is a big source of protein for us and this little guy makes cooking with it so much easier and we always get the texture we want. Highly recommended!

6. VITAMIX!!

And we shall save the best for last…I got this guy for Christmas and my life is better because of it. We make everything in this. Our daily green smoothies, sauces, soups!, you name it.

What are your favorite kitchen gadgets? Do you have something you couldn’t live without?

Our Front Planter Bed Addition

Our front planter beds have been something D and I have wanted to work on since I moved in. Our house is very one dimensional in front and still needs some serious work, like window boxes to add some depth and to paint the trim white, but baby steps Amanda, baby steps. In the warmer months we spend a lot of time outside and it’s always been a dream of mine to be good at landscaping like my mom was. I admire her tremendously and how much she knows by just teaching herself and asking questions. She is the queen of DIY in every aspect and when I have questions I always call mom first.

D and I have decided to take on one planter bed at a time. We have a lot of them and since eventually there is going to be the winery on site and people who come to it will be able to see our home, it’s important to me that the landscaping is something we are proud of. We are starting with the front planter bed and yesterday D and I went to Al’s Garden Center to get a few Perennials to fill in some of the space. My dream is to have no weeds able to grow so we also got a lot of plants that are ground covers and will grow throughout the bed with time.

I took this picture at the nursery because I love the varying heights and depth of the bed. There is a lot going on yet it seems to flow very nicely. I’d love something like this eventually.

We picked out several things and decided to start small and grow from there. We’d get a few things planted and in a couple of weeks go back for more. The colors I want to emphasize are purple, yellow and white. A few days ago I picked up some lavender and Ajuga’s or Bugleweed (ground covers) and planted those. Last year D and I went to a couple Lavender farms down here (read here) and it really inspired me to plant a bunch of lavender this year.

Here is the right side before:

Here is the left side before: The front door is in the middle of the two. As you can see, just a lot of green thus far!

I started by removing a Rhododendron which is behind the center shrub. It sat way too close to it and to be honest, I would get rid of the other Rhodie but it’s too big so I just cut it back some to open the space up on the right by the walkway.  Then I transplanted another shrub because it was in an awkward location and I wanted to fill in some of the space in back. It’s not dead, I promise. It just looks that way in the picture. It has small little buds on it :)

Then I took what D and I bought at Al’s Garden Center and placed them where I wanted them to go based on what they were and how much they will grow over time.

Here are a few pictures after I planted. I will post some more in a few weeks as things start to grow a bit! Right now it still looks a little spars and bare but it will grow!

I’m loving the added color and I can’t wait to see how these guys grown over the next few months and what we will need to add down the road!

Hope you all had a great weekend! I’d love to hear about your fun yard projects you’re working on!

Mr. & Mrs. Pillows – A Novice Sewing Project

A couple of weeks ago I was flipping through the Ballard Designs magazine and I came across these pillows and my jaw dropped open.

Via

But I wasn’t too thrilled about spending $60 bucks on pillows that would be thrown on the floor at night only to have our dog, Isis crawl over sometime during the night and rest her sweet little head on them. Seriously, she does it with the one we have now.

I also just happened to take my first sewing class at Joann Fabric and Craft Store and was eager for my first project. So, I decided to give it a go. What’s the worst that could happen, right? So I may not have the straightest lines or not be very good at top stitching yet but these guys were going to be made with L.O.V.E and that they were.

I really wanted to start incorporating some more color into our home so I opted for a khaki color for one and a mustard yellow for the other (this being the ‘more color’).

It was a pretty easy project even though I was totally nervous when I was sewing having to stop and tell myself to breath for goodness sake! It’s just fabric after all. I made it through just fine and was ready to start stenciling the Mr. and Mrs. on.

I don’t have a Silhouette or Cricket machine (Yet! My birthday IS only five months away!) so I cut the Mr and Mrs out by hand. Before I painted I needed to put something in between the two layers of fabric because I was fearful that the paint would bleed onto the other side and I definitely didn’t want that.

Then I was ready to begin stenciling!

My stenciling kit was pretty low maintenance. I used some paint I already had around the house, a paper plate, and one of those special shaped spongy things specifically for stenciling.

After all the stenciling was finished and the paint dried, I stuffed the pillow cases with some old pillows I had from some throw pillows I no longer used (let’s see how many times I can say pillow in one sentence!). Then, to complete it, I just hand stitched the bottom of the pillow closed and viola!

Here is Isis giving her approval. I can only imagine what she is thinking: ‘I can’t wait to get my head on one of those!”

Overall, I am pretty sure I am super addicted to sewing now. I am already thinking up some new and awesome sewing projects and I can hardly wait! In fact, I’ve already sewed something else but it is a gift for a baby shower in two weeks so you’ll just have to wait and see  :)

I’m linking this project up at the following places:

(Friday)

30 Days

5D5W

The Shabby Nest

Tatertots and Jello

See Vanessa Craft

At The Picket Fence

Remodelaholic

504 Main

Whipperberry

Chic on a Shoestring

(Saturday)

Funky Junk Interiors

Six Sisters Stuff

Be Different Act Normal

(Sunday)

Sunday Scoop @ I heart Nap Time

It’s Overflowing

Nifty Thrifty Things

(Monday)

Skip To My Lou

Craft O Maniac

(Tuesday)

The Winthrop Chronicles

Tip Junkie

What Do You Do When Your Cat’s Stuck in a Tree?

Before moving to the country, I lived in apartments and homes where my cats were predominately indoors only. When we first moved into D’s home last May, I was hesitant to let my cats out because I was afraid that they would a) become food for something or b) get lost on the property and not be able to find their way back. Yes, I’m a tad bit paranoid but I love my little furry family members and wanted to shelter them from anything bad happening to them. But, they are cats and well, cats will be cats and they wanted to run free and feel the wind in their fur so I let them out during the day. Well, about two months after moving in my cat Lucy was killed by something at dusk and that left only Oliver, my fluffy tail orange Tabby.

Unlike Lucy, Oliver has always had a good understanding of the meaning of predators. That much was obvious whenever you watch him run across the yard. Hunched down, constantly looking around him and up into the sky whereas Lucy, God rest her soul, was completely oblivious to anything. She had no idea that there were things out there that didn’t want to be her friend.

When Lucy was killed Oliver went through a brief mourning period (he did, trust me. He seemed sad, very confused and lost) and that’s when I decided that Oliver needed to have a little more freedom. As much as I wanted to tighten in the reigns and never lose sight of him, but I knew that this just wasn’t going to cut it. Oliver has a longing for adventure and to hunt and there was no keeping him indoors.

So, he started coming and going as he pleased at all hours of the day and in no time he had made friends with D’s cousin’s cat Buddy and they explored the nights together. Every morning I could always count on my little buddy sitting on-top of the towel I placed on the BBQ, starring in the window to notify me he was ready to come in. Except, yesterday morning he wasn’t there.

My first thought was that it was unlike him and strange. He is a kitty of habit and I always knew he’d be on his spot in the morning. Unless, something was wrong and he couldn’t make it to his spot. I calmly put on my muck boots and jacket and told myself I had to go let the chickens out any way so I might as well check around the yard to see if he’d possibly forgotten which door to come to. I know, but seriously, I had to tell myself something because I was trying to remain calm and not let my mind go to those dark places where coyotes get on the property and find their way to my fluffy orange tabby.

As I walked around the yard I called his name hoping that he would just hop out from behind a tree as if he was saying “boo mom! I was just trying to scare you!” But he didn’t and I continued to call out to him. As I was walking back onto the deck, my heart aching fear and sadness,  I called once more and instead of silence, I heard a soft ‘meow’ in the distance and stopped in my tracks. I called again, and the same. “MEEOOOW!” Okay, I knew he was alive and that was good. But where was he? I walked back into the yard and called out again and again following the desperate cries in the distance until I was just on the border of the vineyard in a clearing that had three 60 foot pine trees. I stood at the bottom trying to figure out where he was until his last cry had my eyes trace up towards the sky and there I saw it. My poor, defenseless house-kitty stuck 30-35 feet up in the tree. WTH! How the hell did he get up there?

The tree

After a moment of just staring at him in sheer shock that he actually knew how to climb a tree, hey, he WAS a city cat after all, I turned and ran at full speed back towards the house to get D. You would have though the base of the tree was one fire with the speed I ran but my poor kitty was stuck up there and I’ll be damned if I did. not. do. something!

(side note: I have been known to go to great lengths to save animals so what I am about to share may seem… well, a little too much effort to some but to me, it’s all part of my make up…so don’t judge. lol)

I burst through the bedroom door out of breath and D starred at me in confusion as I tried to explain to him what was wrong. Bent over and out of breath, I finally managed to get out that Oliver was stuck in a tree ’40′ feet off the ground and he can’t get down!!!

“He’s a cat Amanda. Just leave him alone, he’ll climb down.”

“No, you don’t understand. I’ve NEVER seen him climb a tree before. I think something chased him up there and now he has no idea how to get down!!”

“What do you want me to do? I really think if we just leave him alone he’ll come down”

“Noooooo! You don’t understand!! HE. IS. STUCK! HELP HIM!”

I turned and ran back outside and did what any right minded, cat loving, country girl would do. I called the fire department.

After a somewhat embarrassing conversation with the woman on the other end, she basically told me to just get a ladder, place it against the tree with some food at the bottom and eventually, when he is hungry enough, he will come down. She OBVIOUSLY didn’t know MY cat or me.

A few moments later D joined me under the tree and after a few minutes of trying to coax him out I told him to go get the tallest ladder we have and a long rope, “I am going to get my harness and climb this bitch and save my cat!”

Not so much.

That idea was shot down quicker then it took me to tell him. “Fine, go get the tallest ladder and I’ll go get him some food and we’ll just place the ladder against the tree and try to entice him down with food. I’m sure he is starving since I just know he’s been up there all night long.”

After we got the ladder in place and the food at the base of the ladder, we decided that we would go inside for a bit and he would come down on his own. After an hour and a half I went back out and saw that he had made no attempt to get his butt out of the tree. At this point D was in a meeting with some vineyard people and I was left at the base of the tree talking to my cat. A few minutes later I saw Joel, D’s cousin coming out on the quad. As he pulled up his cat Buddy jumped off his lap and ran over to the tree. “Wait, your cat rides the quad with you?” My cat gets stuck in a damn tree and his cat rides quads? Awesome.

It took a moment but once Buddy realized Oliver was up in the tree he began to panic, circling the tree, meowing frantically and both Joel and I had to chuckle. They really ARE best friends. I thought that was just something I made up to be funny. Buddy sat at the bottom of the tree looking up and cried out to Oliver. I assumed he was trying to explain to my poor city cat how country cats go about getting out of tree. Obviously, right?

After 30 more minutes and Oliver almost falling out of the tree I started to panic. And after calling the Humane Society to see if they knew of someone who would rescue cats out of trees and being laughed at by the woman on the other end, I started to get angry.

“Isn’t there something we can rent to get up to his level and get him out?”

“Well, I can call and see how much renting a cherry picker is.”

“Do it.”

A few moments later, D’s meeting ended and he joined us back under the tree. I told him we were going to rent a cherry picker and they would lift me up to Oliver and I would grab him out of the tree. After a brief chuckle he realized I wasn’t joking. “This is what you really want me to do.” As he said it tears started welling up in my eyes and and I cried out that I didn’t want another dead cat and I certainly don’t want him dying by falling to his death! He said okay and Joel and D went back up to the barn to make arrangements.

Buddy and I stuck around the tree but after a few minutes and realizing that neither Joel nor D had left to go get the cherry picker I left Oliver in the tree and Buddy at the base crying up to him and went back up to the barn.

“What are you doing? Why haven’t you left?

“I just wanted to make sure you really want me to rent this thing.”

“Fine, don’t. Just let my cat die. But let me say this, YOU DON’T want to be around me if THAT happens!”

Just then David yelled out…

“$%@*, he’s on the ladder! He’s on the ladder!”

I took off running back out to the vineyard and low and behold, Oliver was balancing on the top of the ladder and by the time I reached it, he was scurrying down the tree to join Buddy. I ran to pick him up and make sure he wasn’t hurt in any way and he hissed at me. What the hell? He wanted nothing to do with me and he and Buddy frolicked off in the tall grass. When I eventually caught up with him and I picked him up and he growled at me. Wow, love you too little buddy. I can only hope that one day he will understand a mother’s love.

I carried him back inside and needless to say, guess who wont be going back outside at night any time soon?

Moral of the story is this. If your cat climbs a tree and gets stuck, just wait, he will climb down.

Do you have any fun cat stories? I’d love to hear them!

This post is linked up at Serenity Now!

Easter ‘Egg’ Salad

Growing up we always had ham and deviled eggs on Easter. I loved both but really loved those darn deviled eggs! Admittedly so, I actually miss them a bit. There was something rather addicting about them and you could never just have one! D and I no longer eat most of the ingredients that go into Deviled Eggs but I still wanted to do something symbolic of my youth and I remember having something similar before, I came up with my own version.

With a little tweaking  I came up with the most delicious faux egg salad recipe that tastes just like the real thing! If you don’t believe me, even D’s parents agreed and wanted the recipe! The longer the salad sat in the refrigerator the better it got too!

So what is the secret? Well, besides all the amazing spices that go into it, the big secret is pressed tofu! Pressed tofu? What is that? If  you shy away from eating tofu because you’ve only had the super moist, soggy kinds in the past, you HAVE to get a tofu press! This was the key to making much better tofu and we seriously always have tofu in the fridge pressing for future use.

Here is what it looks like and if you want one for yourself, there is a direct link to amazon.com on the right hand side of this page at the bottom.

If you love tofu, your life will be better for getting this guy!~

Easter ‘Egg’ Salad

Here is what’s in it:

12 oz. package of pressed tofu (we usually press it overnight if we don’t already have one in the fridge pressing)

1/2 cup Veganaise or if you eat mayo, use that

4 Tbsp. yellow mustard or a stone ground mustard (start with less mustard and add to taste)

Add the following spice, start on the lite side and add more to taste:

Turmeric (for color, nutritional value, and taste)

Onion Powder

Garlic Powder

Curry Powder

Salt and Pepper

You can add the following as well chopped up:

Celery Stalk

Dill Pickles

Relish

Red Pepper

Garnish with chopped red pepper or paprika.

How to make (it’s pretty darn easy):

1. Crumble tofu in to a mixing bowl.

2. Add veganaise and spices, starting lite and adding more to taste.

3. Add whatever else you’d like to add such as celery and dill pickles and stir together with a fork. The fork will help break it down even further. You do want some chunky aspects to it so it has texture.

4. Either spread on crackers or scoop on lettuce or in a bowl and ENJOY!

I’m linked up here for Allergy Free Wednesday