Monthly Archives: May 2010

Memorial Day festivities with a bunch of hillbillies

Our memorial day begins on the patio of my parents…
With lots of food…
Eating cake ūüôā
And fun…
Playing with water balloons
Harmonizing with nature…
They hear something
A gift from the boys
Sharing the goods from the bone heist on their dog cousins kennel
Too busy to notice the towering giant
The old teaching the young…
Learning the ancient art of how to “break your finger.”
…and drive the golf cart.
Welcoming those returning with spoils from the river raid [fishish]…
The prized fisherman with a Beaver stick
Marking of the Beaver who used to own this stick
Playing some good ol’ fashion Baseball…
Bringing the heat
Bringing the humor
Sitting back taking a break….
It’s been a good day!
So many memories swirling in my mind
…and pondering the events of yet another great family time!

Blame it on the Boys!!

Oh, I forgot…did I mention that the L’oreal self tanner stinks?¬† Most bottled tans¬†do so I was not surprised however, what I was not prepared for was the Neutrogena spray self-tanner.¬† We used this one as well and turned our bathroom¬†into a thick foggy chemical haze.¬† It was bad.¬† When we were done the floor had a sticky residue that even freaked out the boys who usually bring the disgusting into our home and are phased by very little.¬† When¬†I woke up the next morning and walked into the bathroom I ran into a wall of stench.¬† It resembled urine and could easily be blamed on the trigger happy males in our home.¬† However,¬†being mature and responsible¬† having used self tanners before I knew immediately that this smell was from the chemical in a bottle tan.¬†

Enter daughter:¬† “UGH! MOM, The bathroom smells like pee!”¬† Fighting the urge once again to blame it on the boys, I explained that it was from the spray tan haze we created and that I used Clorox on the floors.¬† It should get better.¬†

12 hours later:  The smell is still present and even the boys are complaining.  The sink and every surface have been cleaned.  Clorox has been doing its thing on the floors yet the smell still lingers.

24 hours later:¬† Rotten, rank — the smell persists.¬†¬†The youngest¬†has a little Sponge Bob toilet seat (below) that he places on the big toilet seat when he has to poo and occasionally¬† it will get splashed with pee.¬†¬†My daughter¬†“Mom, I think it is¬†his toilet seat.¬† It has to be!”¬†¬†Low blow.¬† She tried to blame it on the boys?¬† Now, where would she get that idea?¬† I explained that on average¬†there is more nasty on the main toilet seat than¬†his little seat and that it would take a whole lot of gross to stench up the entire bathroom.¬† So we concluded that the self tanner has to be on the walls, the woodwork, the shower curtain and the bathroom curtains.¬† Like an alien life form it has¬†permeated our living space and is sinking into the pores of our home.

baby boy's bathroom luxury

Today:  The washing machine is groaning as it runs full speed. I have vowed to eradicate this urine-mimicking chemical from our home.  and if all else fails I can always blame it on they boys or take the high road and pin it on the Sponge Bob seat!

Pumpkin, Carrot and other varieties of ORANGE!

Ok here’s the quickie verdict.¬† The winner of the best self tanner goes to…….Coppertone gradual tan lotion!!

The reason?¬† Well the L’oreal¬†sublime instant bronzer¬†turned my beautiful daughter carrot orange.¬† Darn, I wish I had pictures but no joke…she was a pumpkin!¬† My little pumpkin, literally.¬† Her color was harsh and the natural light outside almost made her appear neon flourescent!¬† Worse than the chicks on Jerseylicious¬†— yes, that is possible believe it or not!¬† However, she did not find her new color amusing and spent over an hour in the shower scrubbing herself raw while I laundered our stained clothing.¬†¬† I did not have a dramatic color change like she did because after one application (she used it for two days in a row) I could see the tale-tale signs that Peter Cotton Tail may be hopping down¬†my bunny trail!¬†

Yes, the L’oreal¬†self-tanner is instant as it claims and gives color within 24 hours but it is difficult to use, is prone to streaks and orange clumpish spots and stains anything within reach even though it claims¬†to be a no transfer product.¬†¬†It is also sticky and stinky.¬† It smells of chemicals¬†like¬†most of the bottled tans.¬† Products like it are the reason why¬†I¬†convulse and wrinkle my nose at the mere mention of self-tanners.

BUT the Coppertone lotion is white and creamy like regular lotion.¬† It does not stain, does not transfer, does not streak or clump and takes the win hands down.¬† The Dove lotion is also fab but it takes a little longer to work.¬† Which reminds me that these lotions take at least a week to build any resemblance of color.¬† Although after being turned into a pumpkin I’m sure my lovely girl would welcome gradual!

Sparkling like a vampire

A ton of sparkles – although not so evident in this photo

Just a short review 24hr after using the L’oreal sublime instant bronzer on my pale, milky body.¬† Well, it does give color!¬† However, you must watch out for color clumps, massive callus, cuticle and under the¬†fingernail¬†uptake (making these areas freakishly dark) that plague most self tanners.¬† You really have to WASH your hands well – like scrub the skin off well!!!¬† Also, the “bronzer” means it has sparkles that will give you a Twilight Vampy appearance when you hit sunlight – above and below.

Sparkles where sparkles shouldn’t be

I haven’t noticed this problem with the lotions.¬† They are more subtle but also take at least a week to give color.¬† With the instant Bronzer I awoke transformed into a lovely somewhat tan specimen with sparkling skin.

Get your TAN on!

L’oreal Sublime Bronze instant action, Coppertone Gradual Tan, and Dove self tanning lotion

¬†If you are alive and breathing then you most likely heard¬†about all the damage¬†the beautiful sun does to our skin.¬† If you’re¬†teens-20’s then you may¬†have the “nothings gonna happen to me” attitude and still bath in¬† UV rays.¬†¬†Been there and¬†LOVED it.¬† I even have the skin damaged, photo pigmentation changes to prove it.¬†¬†Back in the day it was baby oil and iodine to stain your skin– oh yea!!¬† Some brave souls even broke out the Criso oil but I just couldn’t get past the sizzling meat image.¬† However,¬†I was a total sun freak and got my freak on proudly.¬† But, sigh I had to stop as I¬†was visually scared by one too many wrinkled, elderly beach¬†pruned raisins…I mean, women.¬†¬†Thigh skin should remain on the thighs and NOT droop below the knees…chest skin should not have more folds than a paper fan and¬†human skin should not resemble that of an Elephant.¬†

¬†Now, if you are anything like me and desire to ward off more wrinkles than necessary but want to do it with some color, then you may find yourself considering the world of self tanners.¬† I must say that they have come ALONG way from their original creation and there are a TON to choose from.¬† Have you found yourself standing in front of rows of self tanners asking yourself which one to buy? ¬†I do every season and sometimes I¬†walk away with either a dozen (exaggeration…well, kinda) or not a one depending on my mood, frustration level and how many of my kids I have with me at the time.¬† Some of the tanners are streakless, some are creams or lotions, some are sprays, some are tinted brown and gel-like, some are instant and wash off,¬†and on and on and on!¬† Enough.¬† Just give me some color!!¬† AND preferably not the orangish color that screams “I applied a self tanner!”

¬†So here’s what I’m gonna do.¬† I bought three (cheaper brands – there is a whole other world of $20 and above self-tanners) and I will test these babies out and let you know which ones I like.¬† Oh, I just remembered that I have the spray type too.¬† Costco bulk special of last year.¬† I’ll have to dig it out of my closet and hopefully it isn’t toxic. ¬†Also, my baby girl who radiates natural color is also testing them with me so we will have a good idea of how it effects a milky, pale, blood drained person like myself and a beautiful, golden, tropical beauty like my daughter.¬† She has been using the lotion type (Dove) and I must tell you that it is nice.¬† The only down side is it takes at least a week to achieve some color.¬† But if you have the time, it is super easy to apply and blend so gone are the clumped orange areas, darker knees, elbows and ankles.¬†¬†So far it looks very natural but then again she is lovely.¬† I must try it on my whiter than white body and see if I make any children cry.¬†

¬†Stay tuned……

I Can’t Believe It’s Butter!!!

Or maybe the title should read ‘I can’t believe I Made Butter!!’¬† Yes way!¬† I (me, myself and I)¬†made butter!!!¬† giggle.¬† Ok, I’ll calm down from my mini freak and show you the details.¬† First I took a trip to my local farm and bought some good ‘ol raw cow milk.¬† Then, I popped it in the fridge to wait for the cream (’cause butter is made from cream and I prefer mine to be hormone and antibiotic free thank-you)¬†to rise to the top like this:

Ahhh, separation!
After seeing the magic cream at the top of the milk I scooped it out and put it into my food processor ’cause¬†AS¬†IF I’m going to shake or churn this stuff by hand…no way!
Scooping out the cream

Next I pushed “on” and let marvelous electricity do it’s thing to the cream.¬† Now, this step take several minutes and the cream morphs through a¬†few stages.¬† First it is just liquid blending away:

First stage of blending into butter
Then it becomes frothy and whipped (hence whipped cream!)  If you desired whipped cream then you could stop here because the next phase is butter. 
Whipping into cream
Oh sooooo¬†quickly after beautiful whipped cream does it becomes not so beautiful butter.¬† It happens fast…like split second material!¬† One minute it’s foamy and then BAM, curds of dark yellow butter!¬† They call this “when the cream seizes.”¬†¬† And seizes it does.
Butter showing it’s face
 If you like Buttermilk, which (gag) I do not, make sure to keep the liquid around the butter because that is Buttermilk.  I dumped mine down the drain and strained the butter:
Strained Butter

Not done yet!  Now if you want your butter to actually last then you have to get rid of the butter milk residue or it will make the butter go south and sour quickly.  Use ice-cold water (my tap just happens to be THAT cold) and rinse until the water is clear.

Rinsing the butter milk off of the newly birthed butter
You are now ready to salt (if you dig it РI do) and shape your butter.  Because I had a little helper and we were making a BIG mess, I decided not to go over the top with the creativity and just plunked it into a plastic container.  BUT you can place the butter in molds and shape it as desired before placing in the fridge.  Again, I just clumped mine in a somewhat questionable rectangular shape and found a container for it to live in until consumption.
My butter ūüôā
I made this butter from 1 gallon of raw cow milk cream.¬† We aren’t crazy butter consumers so I bet this will last us awhile.¬† Surprisingly, it actually tastes good…like real butter!¬† You know how¬†practically everything¬†that is made at home to replace that prized store-bought¬†item never¬†tastes the same?¬† Well, this is one item that is almost a dead ringer for the store-bought material.
I still can’t believe it’s butter.¬† I’ve been a consumer far too long and I’m gettin’ back to the basics but I draw the line at a butter churner!¬† I heart my cuisnart¬†tooooo much!!

Happy Mother’s Day Mommy: Part 4

My mom (long brown hair) and me (baby)

She is beautiful.¬† She is strong.¬† She is unique.¬† She is quirky.¬† She is seriously funny to the point of being called warped and sick.¬† She is real not fake.¬† She is warm.¬† She is cozy.¬† She is comforting.¬† She is comfy and squishy.¬† She is dependable.¬† She is encouraging.¬† She is a rock.¬† She is¬†faithful.¬† She is tenacious (pit bull status).¬† She is determined.¬† She is creative.¬† She is forgiving.¬† She is deep.¬† She is selfless and does not know the meaning of selfishness.¬† She¬†is intelligent.¬† She is fearless and brave.¬† She is humble.¬† She is emotional.¬† She is gifted.¬† She is loyal.¬† She is¬†non-materialistic.¬† She is unity.¬† She is talented.¬† She¬†is the best short order cook around.¬† She is a great communicator.¬† She is vision.¬† She is insightful.¬† She is giving to the point of exhaustion.¬† She is confident.¬† She is secure.¬† She is a leader.¬†¬†She is¬†spirited.¬†¬†She is a friend….not only is she a friend but she is my best friend and I am honored to call her mom.¬†¬†¬†¬†

Happy Mother’s Day Mommy!¬† With this, I officially¬†close my Mother’s Day series.¬† I love you.