Friday, October 31, 2008

Question......

The Bag Lady has come up with something that she hopes will be a useful, popular little item, but she needs your input!

What do you think of these?
She calls them soap-savers. It drives her crazy when the soap in the shower gets too small to use, because she hates to throw away the remainder, so she came up with this idea. Here is a close-up:



It's a washing mitt, with a piece of net across the front, behind which you can slide that tiny piece of soap.

Do you think it's

a) a terrific idea and yes, I'd buy one.....

or

b) sheesh, are you nuts? Who would waste money on that?

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Quick Update

The Bag Lady has been head down and butt up for a couple of days now in the final push to finish some crafts before the weekend. She has had some successes, but has also had a couple of problems (if whatever she is working on doesn't turn out close to perfect, she won't sell it)

She will try to post some photos later, really!!

Later.


In the meantime, here is a photo of her friends' dog, sleeping in their other (much smaller) dogs' bed and using a conveniently placed stuffed toy to rest his chin! He used to sleep in it when he was a pup...... guess he figures it SHOULD still be comfortable:

And a little video for the dog-lovers out there:


video

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Wee Wednesday Whatnots

So.

The Bag Lady spent a busy Tuesday doing crafts, then bringing tractors and the disk home from the summer pasture. A couple of very good friends took time out from their own busy schedules to give her a hand getting the logs unhooked and the disk hooked up (after much trial and error and a wee bit of cussing), and the chains gathered up! One friend drove the other tractor home, while his wife followed the Bag Lady to make sure she didn't have any trouble! Some friends are definitely worth their weight in gold!

The Bag Lady is hoping to have photos of her crafts to share with you by tomorrow. In the meantime, here is a teaser:


This is a casserole carrier. The Bag Lady is quite enamoured of this, and hopes that other people will be, too. If they aren't, the Bag Lady will be carrying an awful lot of casseroles around, but she'll be doing it with a different carrier everytime! And all of them will be Christmasy!

Have a great day!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Sightings from Another Road Trip

The Bag Lady went on another road trip with the Rancher yesterday. Here are some of the things they saw along the way. (Click on any of the photos to enlarge)

There was a hot air balloon enjoying the calm day:


There were literally hundreds of geese in the air, but it was difficult to capture them on film. The Bag Lady took many, many photos, but with the bouncing of the truck, she took many, many pictures of nothing! There are a few geese just visible to the right in this photo:


Hard as it may be to believe, there are quite a lot of geese in this photo (even though it just looks like dirt on the windshield!):

Heading down into the bleak-looking river valley:

The sheriffs were highly visible. The Bag Lady and the Rancher saw this scene four (or was it five?) times:

Now that the leaves are gone, the willows look red:


When the truck crested a little rise in the road, there was something black in the middle of the road off in the distance. Once the truck got a little closer, it turned out to be a cow and her calf on the outside of the fence! The Rancher slowed down to a crawl in order to pass them without spooking them back onto the road:


There was even a little snow on the ground!


And, at their destination, log piles waiting to be loaded onto trucks and transported to the mill. In fact, that is what the Rancher is doing today - loading these very logs onto trucks.

Have a good day!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Not Lost!

So, the Bag Lady finally found her salt and pepper shaker collection and guess what? They were right where she thought they were all along....she just didn't look deep enough in the box! Here is a slightly blurry picture of most of them. (The Christmas shakers are not in this picture because they are in a different box - she actually uses them at Christmas.) Click on the photo to enlarge to see the details of the shakers:


Here is one of her favourite sets - can you imagine actually using these on the table?

And here is the set that will forever remind her of Tokaiangel :

Finally, while these are not shakers, they are for salt. Originally, salt cellars were set on the table, complete with their own tiny spoons. The Bag Lady's grandmother had six of them (she may have had far more - the Bag Lady's sister, Reb, has a couple) and the Bag Lady ended up with these four.


Unfortunately, the Bag Lady didn't do a very good job of photographing them, despite actually putting on her reading glasses so she could see the screen on her camera. Sheesh.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Friday Rambling Round-up

The Bag Lady finally found her Christmas fabric and is well on her way to sewing it into something that she hopes will resemble what she intends it to be. If it works out, she'll post a photo. If it doesn't, she won't, so don't be asking about it!

She's hoping to have lots of time over the weekend to get lots of sewing and crafting done. The Rancher has to go away for work, and probably won't be back until Sunday evening. The Bag Lady will be in charge!! Hahahaha. Boss Baggie. Baggie Boss.......Queen Bag Lady.

As you can probably tell from the inanity so far, the Bag Lady has nothing much to share with you today. Some of the crafts are at the photo-stage, but she thought she would perhaps wait until she has a whole bunch of things done before she takes a picture.

She still hasn't found her salt and pepper shakers, and is beginning to despair. Where could they possibly be? Sheesh. She once lost her mixmaster for 5 or 6 years at least, she said she couldn't find it so couldn't do any baking! Turns out it was right there on the shelf where she put it, hiding in a plastic bag. The Cow Whisperer spotted it with his eagle eye, so the Bag Lady was finally forced to bake a cake. ~~sigh~~ Then the mixmaster mysteriously got broken. (It's hard to break a mixmaster - takes repeated beatings!)

Okay, off to search for shakers again.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Stuff Story

Still nothing photo-worthy on the craft front.....Martha Stewart can rest easy, as the Bag Lady seems to have lost her touch as far as tying bows goes! She's hoping she gets her crafty-ness back today, because yesterday almost scared her. She made herself a plaque once, after completely renovating an old motorhome, that said "Eat your heart out, Martha!"....if things don't improve soon, she may be forced to take it down!

Yesterday proved to be yet another day of hunting for something she couldn't find - this time it was a bag of Christmas fabric that she knows she has somewhere in her house!

She's beginning to wonder if she needs an intervention or something because she has far too much stuff in her house.

There's stuff in boxes,
stuff in bags,
stuff stuffed in closets,
even bags stuffed with rags!

Okay, okay, she's not much of a poet.....

She's hoping today will be a better craft day. So many ideas, so little time.

And still no salt and pepper shaker collection. ~~sigh~~


**Edited to ask - does anyone else dislike the embedded comment section that Blogger has added? I prefer the separate page, because I like to see the avatars of my commenters!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Where the Heck......?

The Bag Lady did manage to accomplish a few things yesterday - got most of the laundry done, and got a good start on some crafts. Of course, now her house looks like the aftermath of an explosion in Santa's workshop..... and not in a good way.

She doesn't have anything completed yet except the laundry so can't share any photos with you. Disappointing, isn't it?

Geosomin posted a picture on her blog yesterday of a very cool pepper mill, which reminded the Bag Lady of her salt and pepper shaker collection. Years ago, the Bag Lady's aunt gave her the cutest little salt and pepper shaker, which started a trend. For many years, the Bag Lady received salt and pepper shakers for different occasions like birthdays and Christmas. She finally had to put a stop to it because she hates dusting knick-knacks, and she no longer displays her collection. Geosomin's post prompted her to drag out some of her collection. Which, in turn, led her to the realization that she can't find half of them! She cannot remember where she stashed them. ~~sigh~~ (You know you have too much stuff when......) This forgetfulness is really starting to annoy her....after all, it's only been about 10 years since she put them away! How could she have forgotten so soon what she did with them? Sheesh!

So the Bag Lady will be obssessing about that until she finally remembers where she put them, or she will eventually pull her entire house apart until she finds them, or at the very least, until something else distracts her!

In the meantime, she'll work on more crafts and hopefully will soon have some completed and photo-worthy.

Or not.

Now, where the hell did I put my glue gun.....?

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Quick Random Tuesday

The Bag Lady carries a camera in her truck (most of the time, anyway) and finally remembered to bring it into the house to download the pictures she has taken recently.

Some of these are a couple weeks old, but she thought she would share them with you anyway because she has nothing else going on right now that she is ready to share they are so pretty. Keep in mind that the landscapes do not look like this any longer - the wind has blown most of the leaves from the trees, so it is looking rather bleak and barren now.

The river valley a couple weeks ago was ablaze with colour:

The Bag Lady turned off the highway the other day and there were three deer standing there, looking at her. By the time she got her camera turned on, the mother and the other twin had left, but this little one was lagging a little:


The trees along the river:


Yesterday, the Bag Lady had to go to town. On her way home, she passed this buffalo farm. She has passed it on many occasions, and has often hoped that conditions would be right to take pictures (the buffalo would be close to the fence, there would be no traffic, allowing the Bag Lady to stop and take a picture). Finally, yesterday, it happened!

The Bag Lady has a full plate today, so talk amongst yourselves!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Monday Weekend Report

The Bag Lady spend the weekend going round and round the field in the tractor. She is hoping the Cow Whisperer is going to spell her off today so she can get some of her own work done - fun and exciting stuff like laundry, vacuuming, scrubbing toilets and grocery shopping!

Here's a little taste of what she did, hour after hour:

video

Scintillating, isn't it?

She had to slow down to take the video because the tractor bounces quite a lot over the rough ground, but she wasn't going all that much faster, honest!

She had a serious case of tractor fatigue last night, so spent an hour or so soaking in the tub. Being a 'farmer' isn't all it's cracked up to be - she'd rather deal with the animals, thankyouverymuch.

She also thinks that if she could spend...oh, let's say a month or so doing this, she would certainly lose some weight! She discovered early on that if she eats, even a small amount, then bounces around awhile, it makes her feel slightly ill. Remember when you were a child, and went to the county fair/amusement park/whatever, stuffed yourself with hot dogs/cotton candy/sno cones, then got on the roller coaster...that slightly sick feeling in the pit of your stomach? Or, for you exercise-types, the feeling you get from doing one too many crunches? (Although, if you are an exercise-type, perhaps that feeling is what you are striving for....!) The Bag Lady thought she was being virtuous by taking only some carrot sticks and a couple pieces of the Laughing Cow cheese (plus copious amounts of water - it's dry, dusty work!) when in fact, she couldn't even eat those! Her abs are sore from trying to maintain her balance whilst bouncing around (to say nothing of how her back is feeling!)

Take a moment today to be grateful to the farmers of the world who feed us - it's hard friggin' work!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Progress Report

The Bag Lady thought she should share some pictures of her "work-day" yesterday. Here is what her office looked like:

Here is a portion of what she got done yesterday:

Here is a small portion of what isn't done yet:

Here is more of what she has yet to finish:

Here is.....well, not exactly sure.....oh, wait, could that be the Bag Lady? A rare sighting, indeed!


The Bag Lady had a little trouble with her float coming apart on her, so she is hoping the Cow Whisperer will have a little time to help her fix it so she can get going again.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Friday Ranch Round-up

The Bag Lady told you the other day, didn't she, that she was planning on doing some crafts in order to have something to put on her table at the craft sale the first part of November? Well, you know what they say about the best laid plans of mice and (wo)men....

In actuality, she has had to postpone those plans for a few days. The Rancher needed her help over at their summer pasture, where he has been trying to fix the mess the loggers left. Yesterday, he was finally at the seeding stage. This is a tiny portion of what needs to be seeded:

Here is the Rancher with his new seeder hooked onto his old tractor. The tractor originally belonged to his father, and is probably close to qualifying as an antique, but it still runs like a top!



The ground is still rather rough for that little seeder, so the Rancher devised a float for the Bag Lady to drag behind the other tractor to help smooth out some of the rough spots. Here is a little video clip of the Rancher preparing a "float":

Step one: cut down a tree.....

video

Unfortunately, the Bag Lady was so busy helping him after step one that she didn't have time to take any more photos. They chained some big logs together, hooked the logs behind the tractor, and the Bag Lady drove around and around and around the field, dragging the logs behind the tractor.

The Bag Lady will be doing this again today. The Rancher had to go to work today, so the Bag Lady will be alone, dragging logs around. She has to remember not to turn too sharply so she doesn't catch the chain between the dual wheels on the tractor and flip the logs up into the cab of the tractor.......that might hurt.

Have a good weekend!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Yard Guard

Here is a little video for your amusement.


video

(Trust the Bag Lady when she says the squirrel was in more danger from the cat seen at the end of the video than he ever was from the dog!!)

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Garden Produce

The Bag Lady dug her potatoes, onions and carrots yesterday.



She didn't plant as many as she has in the past, but this year they made up in size what they lacked in volume! (This is her size 7 gardening shoe....)


Some of the carrots are awfully large, too. Unfortunately, it was difficult to get an accurate photo.


She also did a little preparation for some crafts she has in mind. She has a table booked for an upcoming craft sale at the beginning of November, and needs to make some items to go along with her CartSmart Bags.
She may have to ease up on her blogging a little over the next couple of weeks in order to produce enough crafts to make having a table worthwhile.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Waste Not, Want Not

(warning: Preachy Post!)

Crabby over at Cranky Fitness wrote a post yesterday about staying fit in these hard economic times. Some of you have probably figured out by now that the Bag Lady isn't exactly a fitness guru (hehehehe), but she does try to live a simple, economical life, so she has decided to share a few tips she has learned for stretching your dollar.

The first thing you have to ask yourself is do you really NEED that Ipod/new outfit/couch/DVD/whatever, or do you simply WANT it? Is shopping a form of recreation for you, or do you shop for specific items and ignore all the "deals" on display? In the past few years of rampant consumerism, the Bag Lady has been astounded at the sight of people lined up for hours, waiting for a store to open in order to buy the newest computer game/electronic gadget/whatever. She wonders if, due to this new economic reality, those will be the same people lined up waiting for the soup kitchens to open?

Oh, wait, she was going to give you some tips for pinching pennies. Sorry, she got sidetracked!

Most of her tips involve food, because that is an area she knows well. Some of you who have been reading her blog for awhile are probably aware that she likes food. She likes to cook and create new dishes, and she loves to eat! Which is really obvious to anyone who has seen her picture!

Meal planning is an important part of staying within your budget. With a little planning, you can create simple, nutritious meals for far less money than you would spend on one meal out in a fancy restaurant. For example, buy a less expensive cut of meat with a bone in it. Roast it for supper on Sunday, then boil the bone and any leftover meat and vegetables for soup for later in the week.

As some of you are aware, the Bag Lady cooked a big meal this past Thanksgiving weekend for a large family gathering. From the leftover turkey, she will make hot turkey sandwiches, cold turkey sandwiches, turkey pot pie, a few TV dinners, and she has boiled the carcass for soup. She also has leftover ham, which will be used for omelettes and sandwiches, and that bone has also been boiled for soup.
The TV dinners and the soups will go into the deep freeze for later. So from that one big dinner, she will have enough leftovers for roughly 10 meals. Nothing will go to waste, if she can help it. Her dog will eat fairly well, too!

Don't eat meat? Try making vegetable soup. Use those leafy bits off the celery, some potatoes and the less-than-pretty parts of the carrots and onions, throw in some dried beans or lentils, herbs and spices (don't forget the bay leaf, and don't forget to remove it before you serve the soup!) and let it cook.

Think you don't have time to make soup? If you have time to do laundry and clean your house, you have time to make soup. Ten minutes of cutting up the ingredients, leaving it to simmer on the back of the stove while you go about your other tasks, giving it a stir occasionally when you walk past. If you divide it into serving sizes, put it into glass jars, let it cool and then freeze it, you'll have a ready supply of easy meals. (You ask why glass jars? They can be washed and re-used over and over, and don't release the toxins that plastic sometimes does!)

Do you use a lot of paper towel in your kitchen (something the Bag Lady is guilty of)? Try hanging a hand towel over the handle of your oven door and using it to dry your hands. It can be washed and re-used countless times.

Don't waste money buying bottled water. The tap water in most cities is probably better for you. Buy a refillable bottle and fill it at home. You'd be surprised at the money you'll save.

The Bag Lady is afraid that there are going to be hard economic times ahead for many people, and they are going to have to relearn some of the tricks that their grandparents knew. In the last couple of decades of prosperity, the Bag Lady thinks we have become a throw-away society. The movement toward recycling is, in reality, a step back to our grandparents time when they knew how to be self-sufficient and to get by with less. Nothing was wasted on the farm because there wasn't any money to buy new. They turned frayed collars, replaced sleeve cuffs, patched and altered their clothing. Table scraps fed the dogs, chickens or pigs. You made do, or did without. This is a lesson that may have to be re-learned in the coming days.

What's your favourite tip for saving money?

Monday, October 13, 2008

A Whole Year of Blathering!

Wow. The Bag Lady is celebrating her one-year blogiversary. Hard to believe how quickly the past year has flown by.

When she started on this journey, she wasn't sure she would have anything to say of much interest to anyone else, and is deeply grateful to the people who have been so supportive and faithful about reading and commenting on a regular basis! She has 'met' so many terrific people through blogging, and has even learned a few things! An amazing feat, as it's not easy to teach an old Bag new tricks!

So thank you all, for being supportive, and for reading the Bag Lady's rambling, babbling blather.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Thanksgiving Report

Well.

The Bag Lady's Thanksgiving dinner went very well.

She managed to take a few photos during the preparations, but when it came time for the carving and final preparation, the camera was forgotten. Can you believe she forgot to take a picture of the turkey!? But she will share a few of the photos that she did manage to take:

Making the cranberry sauce early in the morning:


The turkey is in the(table-top) roaster:

Grandma's home-made buns:

Apple pie (there was home-made pumpkin pie, too, that one of the grandma's brought, but the Bag Lady didn't get a picture of it!):


The Bag Lady decided that one apple pie wasn't enough, so she made up a dessert. She called it Lemon Surprise recipe is in the comment section (it turned out so well that her brother-in-law ate the last piece straight out of the dish, claiming it would save on cleaning another plate! The Bag Lady could almost have put the dish straight back into the cupboard, he did such a good job of cleaning it up!):



Surprise Spread Appetizer (can you tell the dish is shaped like a turkey?):

Here's what's left of the ham after the meal:

Odd-ball potato from the Bag Lady's garden:

Relaxing after the meal - playing a game called "Sequence":

There were 18 people for dinner, and everyone seemed quite happy with the meal. The Bag Lady loves big family gatherings!

The Bag Lady's niece brought gin and tonic to drink, and graciously shared with the Bag Lady. This morning, the Bag Lady is happy to report that she is probably safe from malaria for many, many years to come! (Luckily, though, she doesn't have a headache!) Thanks, Linds! It was delicious!

Now she has to finish cleaning up her kitchen, and later in the day she and the Rancher are going to the home of some friends of theirs to do this all over again!! Yum.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Very Brief Friday Round-up

The Bag Lady has nothing much for you today. She took some pictures last night of a partridge who was hanging around in the feed stacks, but they didn't turn out. ~~sigh~~ She was too far away and it was almost dark, so when she zoomed in to try to get a better shot, the pictures went terribly wrong.

Here is a little video clip she tried to take, but she ended up doing the same thing - tried to zoom in and it didn't work very well! Meh. Nobody's perfect!

She doesn't have much else going on right now, but she feels like she's really busy. How is that possible? Oh, right, she's cooking a big dinner tomorrow and has a multitude of things to do in order to get ready!!


video

Hope you all have a great weekend!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Black Days

Why is it that "new and improved" so seldom is? Improved, that is.

The Bag Lady uses the Picasa program to save her pictures and video clips, and they recently came out with the newest version. The Bag Lady thought she would download this newer version because it was supposed to be better. New tools for editing pictures, even a program to make movies!!

She is not impressed and wishes now that she hadn't changed. You would think that at her advanced age, she would know better. She has had this kind of thing happen to her several times in the past, but must be a slow learner.

She would switch back, except she's afraid she will lose all the photos and video clips that she took whilst using the new program. What is so wrong with the new program, you ask? Well, for one thing, she can't see her video clips in the thumbnail mode. All of them appear black. In the older version of the program, she could see the first frame of the clip, which helped identify which clip was which. With the "improved" program, all she sees are little blacked out frames. In order to find a particular video, she has to watch them all, then mark down which number is assigned to the video clip she wants. It is so FREAKIN' annoying! What f**king genius came up with this?

And the new editing tools? Useless. If you want to 'smudge' or blur part of a photo, you are supposed to click on it. When you do, the program picks another portion of the picture to insert there!! Suddenly, you'll have someone's foot on top of their face!

The Bag Lady is not impressed.

New and improved? Not in the Bag Lady's books.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Babbling Bag Lady

The Bag Lady had a busy day yesterday. She and the Rancher moved their cows from one pasture to another, a mile away. This involved gathering them all into the corral, then loading them into the stock trailer to drive them to the other field.

If there wasn't a busy highway between the two fields, they would chance a cattle drive. As it is, though, it's easier to make a few trips with the stock trailer.

The Bag Lady now needs to turn her attention to getting ready for Thanksgiving. She is going to make dinner for some of the family, so needs to do some preparation for that. A little house cleaning is in order, and she needs to decide the menu. Turkey and stuffing, of course, and potatoes, carrots and turnips from the garden. Pumpkin pie and apple pie for dessert. Some cranberry sauce, and some kind of salad, with homemade buns to round out the meal.

Sheesh, now the Bag Lady has made herself hungry!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Skull Cramp

The Bag Lady asks to be excused today.

Her dog ate her homework blog post.


(How could she say that about such a cute, innocent-looking pup?)



She is suffering from 'blank brain', most probably due to her headache.

She leaves you with something weird to ponder.....



Any guesses as to what that is?

Monday, October 6, 2008

Autumn Bounty

The Bag Lady had to take some time off from her kitchen duties the other day in order to stack some straw that a neighbour was kind enough to deliver. The Bag Lady's straw-stacking skills are sadly lacking, but she managed to get most of the straw unloaded before the bale fork BROKE! The neighbour rigged it up with a chain in order for the remainder of the straw to be removed from his truck, and the Cow Whisperer welded it back together the next day when he came home from work. Then he finished stacking the straw, bless his tired heart!


On Saturday, the Bag Lady went on a rare foray into town to a pie-making party. (Scenery along the way - click on any photo to enlarge):




Friends of hers have a little apple tree in their yard that produces an amazing amount of apples!

This little tree:

Produced three bags like this (not including the apples that were damaged or fell off the tree):

We processed them:



Put them into pie shells:




Assembly-line style:



And froze them:



For a sum total of 42 pies; 8 of which the Bag Lady brought home to her freezer. There were enough apples left over to make a huge apple crisp, and still have some for jelly or apple sauce, or just eating.

Then the Bag Lady returned to her own kitchen to deal with more tomatoes and peppers. And last night had a typical North American supper of fried chicken, mashed potatoes, coleslaw and apple pie with cheese for dessert.