Welcome to Simply Stated!

Thank you so much for stopping by. This blog is something I've set up just for fun -- yours and mine! There are any number of things that may be discussed here from everyday living in the California desert to digital scrapbooking to my favorite books to cardmaking to the art of letter writing to caring for feral cats to movies I like. After you read my bio, you should have a good sense of other topics you may find here. I welcome your comments and hope you return again and again!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas Goodies @ SU! Christmas Card Club

As hostess for December 18th's Stampin' Up Christmas Card Club, I provided the group with refreshments. An earlier blog post showed off my penguin appetizers, and here's the rest of the goodies I took. All baked goods were made by Floyd.

Floyd's 12 mini-loaves of Pumpkin Nut Raisin Bread
made using fresh pumpkin, walnuts, and raisins.

Here are two of the mini-loaves before slicing.

Presented on a pretty Christmas tray,
slices of Pumpkin Nut Raisin Bread.

Floyd's Pumpkin Bread Plus (not just raisins and walnuts,
but also chocolate chips and orange rind!)

More of Floyd's baked goodies:
Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Raisin Walnut Cookies

Garlic Cheese Dip (center) with sourdough bread cubes,
cheese, and multi-grain crackers.

The entire spread which was all but gone
when it came time to leave for home.

Love my lovely Poinsettia napkins!

If anyone is interested in recipes for any of the above, let me know in a comment, and I'll be sure you get it!

Thanks again for visiting!


Christmas Greetings from Floyd & Jeanie

December 2011

Dear Family & Friends,

I'm happy to be visiting with you again as another year comes to an end. I love being in touch with each of you. Here are some different ways to contact us including my beloved US Postal Service (P.O. Box 996, Inyokern, CA 93527) and the good old telephone! (You can remove our landline number from your files because it's gone. Floyd's cell is 760-677-9162 and mine is 760-677-9174.) Email Floyd at salyer@iwvisp.com and me at jeanie1951@yahoo.com. Visit the blog upon occasion at simplystated4u.blogspot.com and please leave me a comment! I'm on Facebook (search for Jeanie Salyer). I turn to Facebook quite often to get snippets of news from those important to me and to send out little slices of our life as the year proceeds.

As our card and letter arrive in your mailbox, I hope you're doing well and have had a good year. Overall, our year has been a good one! Floyd completed a couple of neat projects for his buddy including a large shed and a fancy chicken coop. Both buildings were Floyd's own design and turned out very nice. The chicken coop was especially challenging to put up because it needed to be built in a very narrow side yard and on an incline!

Interpreting assignments are way down lately, and so I might have had only ten assignments this year. I had plenty of scrapbooking events, cardmaking workshops, books to read, letters and blog posts to write, plus time spent with family and friends whenever possible to keep me busy.

On April 20th, Floyd & I celebrated our 20th Wedding Anniversary at a new restaurant in Ridgecrest called Maddy's Cafe. We had a wonderful time and a delicious dinner.

It was a great year for La Leche League of Ridgecrest with the ideal number of 10-12 moms (plus their little ones) attending each monthly meeting. In May, the new Leader I was training was accredited, and several of us attended the LLL of So. CA Conference. July and August were busy with preparations for and holding an event for World Breastfeeding Week which is 1-7 August every year. I am now training another Leader Applicant.

In the Spring, two longtime interpreting friends, Diane and Derby, and I went to the Deaf West production of "Pinocchio." We had a great time, and Derb treated us to a wonderful dinner afterward.

We were very sad to say goodbye to our beloved Mollie the Blue Tick Hound in May. She was such a faithful, well-behaved dog who will always hold a special place in our hearts. I remember 16 years ago when we went to choose a puppy, she picked me by sitting on my foot and not moving till we picked her up to take her home with us. One of our kitty-cats, Sunshine, had grown especially close to Mollie, and it was obvious he couldn't figure out where his friend had gone. We would find him lying alone on the bedroom floor where Sunshine and Mollie had spent so much time snuggled up together. Eventually, Sunshine has accepted the loss and now spends more time with us than he ever did while Mollie was living.

All of our other cats are doing well, although Blaze was anemic and feeling out of sorts recently. We improved her diet, added feline vitamins, and are generally trying to boost her immune system. Her normally pink pads had lost all color, but they're now pink again. Blaze is our little mischief maker, and she is again getting into all sorts of things, so we know she's feeling like herself again. Sadie, our Great Pyrenees watchdog is outstanding at her job and is such a sweetheart!

When I turned 60 in September, I threw a big party and invited people from all eras and phases of my life. It was a good turn out and a fun time. Jacqueline, Pine, my dad, brother & sister-in-law, aunt, uncle, cousin, niece, and a whole bunch of friends joined us to help celebrate! Every day we have is a Gift!!

We hope you'll have a very Merry Christmas and a wonderful 2012!

{Snowman card at top made at Nov. 2011 Stampin' Up Christmas Card Club!}

An Army of Penguins

On Sunday afternoon, 18 Dec, we had another meeting of the monthly Stampin' Up Christmas Card Club. Each of us takes a turn being hostess, and December was my month.

I had seen a photo online of these little penguin peeps and decided I wanted to make them for CCC! They were a total hit. Many commented how adorable they were, and others took their photos!

Following is the recipe and the process I used, in case you'd like to make your own little army of appetizers.

Penguin Appetizers

18-Jumbo, pitted black olives
18-Medium, pitted black olives
1-8 ounce package cream cheese, softened
1 carrot, peeled

1. Slice 18-1/4" thick rounds from peeled carrot.
2. Cut a small notch out of each carrot round to form feet (base).
3. Save the cut out notches for beaks.
4. Set the carrot bases on the cutting board in a single layer, ready to accept the penguin bodies.
5. The hole end of the Jumbo olives will be the bottom. If it is not level, slice a small amount off the olive so it will sit level.
6. Cut slit from top to bottom of each Jumbo olive.
7. Using the tip of a butter knife, carefully (gently) insert softened cream cheese into each Jumbo olive. Use knife edge to smooth cream cheese along bottom and front of olive.
8. Use a clean paper towel to remove any cream cheese that remains on olives.
9. As you complete steps 5-8 on each Jumbo olive, set the stuffed olive directly on a carrot base.
10. Repeat step 5-9 for each Jumbo olive.
11. Cut a small slice in each Medium olive to insert a beak.
12. If necessary, cut beaks to 1/8" thickness for easier insertion.
13. Carefully (slowly) insert beak into Medium olive, and then center the beak on face.
14. As you complete steps 11-13 for each Medium olive, set the head on the Jumbo olive body lining up the beak, white chest and notch in feet, then secure with a toothpick inserted from head to base.

If you're transporting these babies
1. Line your plate with waxed paper.
2. Lie penguins on their backs side by side.
3. Wrap plate for transport.
4. Stand them up in rows on the plate when you're arranging your refreshments.

Don't forget to snap their picture! You never know how attached you might get to these little guys: one person told me, "They each have their own personality!"

Look for another post, sharing the other yummy refreshments I took to Christmas Card Club this month!

Thanks so much for visiting with me!!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Happy Birthday, Little Lucky-13!

Here she is, the Birthday Girl.

June 8, 2011 marked one year since we found a tiny little kitten under our deck steps. We call the 8th her birthday because as close as we can figure she was newly born hours before we heard her incessant crying and eventually brought her indoors to baby, nurture, and love.

Now, the pocket on the tee-shirt I'm wearing is clearly too small for Lucky to squeeze into like she did around June 10th, last year. You can see she is a small cat, but she continues to gain and is solid muscle.

It's been an adventure, and Lucky still believes she rules the roost. She's always ready for a game of chase with any of the other cats whether they're in the mood or not.

Her most endearing quality at this time is the way she jumps up on the bed as soon as Floyd turns in for the night and begins padding with both her front and back paws. She purrs loudly while she rhythmically kneads the blanket. We call it Paddy Paws or Paddy Purrs. She moves around as she pads and puts her face near Floyd's showing that all is right with Lucky's world.

Happy Birthday, Little Girl!

Below are more shots of her taken this month.

Thanks for stopping by!


Thursday, April 28, 2011

Book Recommendation::THE HELP

I spend a lot of time reading. More often than not, I've got a non-fiction book in front of me, and then I pick up an easy-reading mystery (Grisham, Parker, Grafton) to relax.

I can't remember now how I heard about THE HELP, a first novel by writer Kathryn Stockett, but I loved it as soon as I began reading it. It can't be called a mystery, and I wasn't terribly relaxed when reading it, especially when worrying for the safety of the women in the book. THE HELP tells a story of incredible women that has stayed with me, and this book currently has the honor of being called My Favorite Book.

Set in the racially tense south of the sixties, we meet several woman, three in particular who join their voices in an effort to change "the way things have always been done" in Mississippi as well as in other areas of the USA.

I urge you to read this book, and only if you are not a reader, to wait for the movie which (produced by Dreamworks) will be in theaters in August 2011.


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Introducing Miss Lucky LuckinBuck

These 2 shots show Lucky when she fit in my
pocket at 2-days-old (left), and then me (in the same
tee-shirt) when she was 3-1/2-mos. holding her(right).

I'm amazed by the number of bloggers I know who blog DAILY. I don't even blog monthly. I think blogging is all about inspiration, and apparently I'm not nearly as inspired as my blogger friends!

In June 2010, we gained a new kitty (because 12 just wasn't enough). In reality, we never set out to *get* any of the cats we now love and adore. They all came to us in a moment of crisis. Our newest addition is no different in that respect.

Our most recent addition is Lucky-13, named that because she's our 13th rescue kitty. Her story is the most extreme because she was abandoned by her mother under our front porch steps the day she was born. Lucky has shown physical strength as well as strength of character since that first day, crying incessantly after being left under our steps so that we couldn't help but hear her and bring her indoors. (I suppose it's also a credit to her mother for giving birth to her close by our house rather than any number of remote areas on our property.) We waited a respectable amount of time (hoping her mother might have a change of heart) to bring Lucky inside.

Following are some photos showing her progress:

Little Lucky at one-day old and 2.8 ounces. At this point, we
were feeding her by eye dropper, 1 ml each feeding.

Here's the little spot of a creature with me at
9 days old, gaining steadily.

At just over two weeks, she graduated to a small nursing bottle.
Floyd takes kitten rescue very seriously.

Even though she looks just terrified in this shot at just over
a month old, I don't think Lucky has ever been terrified since we
brought her inside on June 8, 2010.
{The scar on her face is left after coming to us with ringworm. With
medication, it cleared up quickly and did not spread to any of the
other cats or to us, but it left Miss Lucky with her own
Harry Potter scar on her forehead.}

Another shot of me and Lucky when she was 6 weeks old
and clearly growing.

Floyd and Miss Lucky the smart-aleck sticking out her tongue.
Just over 6 weeks old.

At a little over 2 months old, Lucky naps on the big bed.

Little Miss Lucky looking ferocious (when really, she's just
yawning) next to Blaze our smallest full-grown kitty-cat.
Lucky is 2 mos., 10 days in this picture.

Lucky hangin' out on the kitchen window sill at 3-mos.

Another shot of Lucky (just over 3-months-old) asleep on the
big bed with Big Old Bodie nearby.

Lucky started out at a mere 2.8 ounces on Day 1. There were some critical days where we weren't sure she'd make it, but she pulled through and is now just over 9-months-old and around six pounds as close as we can measure. Initially, we fed her 1/15th of a tablespoon (1 ml) per feeding using an eye dropper. Now, she takes her meals with the other cats.

As I write, she's lying next to me where she inserted herself in a small sliver of space along my left leg. She loves, loves. loves to run through the house challenging all the other cats, learning how to climb higher and higher, and how to jump broader distances. But, when it's time to be calm and peaceful, she's happiest in Floyd's arms or snuggled right up against Floyd or me.

None of the Original Dozen are too big for her to challenge. When she was smaller, the others tolerated her silly antics. The novelty has worn off, and sometimes Lucky and her chosen playmate get into wild, paw-slapping battles. No one ever loses or suffers, but Lucky rarely backs down.

Since she was about 3-days-old, she has responded immediately when we call "Lucky." Until she turned seven or eight months old, as soon as we'd say her name, she'd hop right on over to us even if it was just to touch base quickly then dash off for more play. Now, she really has to be In The Mood to respond with anything more than a backwards glance because as a rule, Lucky's dominant Mood is Playful!

I really appreciate you stopping by. Leave a comment below and tell me what you'd like me to write about!

Thanks & hugs,