Saturday, October 15, 2016

Halloween Decorating

I didn't really have a plan when I started dragging the Halloween decor out, but in general, I had torn some paper strips to do some paper mache-ing, and stuck the extras into one of the plastic pumpkins to keep safe from Kitty.

I sat that pumpkin on top of another pumpkin, and next thing I knew I had two stacks "totems" of jack-o-lanterns.

At first I had put the two "gravestones" in the fireplace, but I didn't feel like the little bit of "scary" went too well with all the smiling, cheerful Jacks.

So I decided to make the top part of the mantel more scary.

The white ceramic vase made by my Grannie back in the 1960's. Kitty knocked it off the buffet and broke it to pieces last Christmas. I couldn't bear to toss it out, so I glued it back together. Badly :(
Turns out it looks pretty suitable for a Halloween decor all cracked up like that.

Haunted "ancestor" portrait.

Other haunted "ancestor" portrait.

Repping my EMTs.

For the buffet area I hung black/striped plastic tablecloths from the Dollar Tree over that torn out wall we still never have gotten around to working on, and an old window frame with the glass panes broken out.

The two-headed clown is a Spirits decanter - not meant to be a Halloween decoration - came from my mother-in-law's house. I don't have any other information about it, I wish I'd asked her where it came from or anything, but I didn't think about it back then.

The hand is a ring-holder from Dollar Tree years ago. Picked up the glass at Goodwill for 77¢ last week.

This chandelier I rescued from cousin Joe's scrap pile and spray painted it black and glued on battery-powered candles, that I also spray painted black.
Added web and spider.

"The Gathering of Crows: One Crow for Sorrow, Two Crows for Joy, Three Crows for a Girl, Four for a Boy. Five Crows for Silver, Six Crows for Gold, Seven Crows for a Secret Never to be Told."

Cat, bat, Witch, candy corner.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Political Post, 4 Years Later

Back in 2012, I posted about how I left the Republican party I wasn't really a member of, and became a "Ron Paul Republican", aka Libertarian.

 Now, I guess I will have to find a new Party. The Libertarian Party is on the same road to ruin as the Democrat and Republican Parties took.

Back in 2012, I agreed with what I read on Gary Johnson's website, but as I really preferred Ron Paul, I didn't delve too much more into Johnson.

Following the RNC's blatant cheating in 2012, and this election year's fiascos - the biased and ridiculous Republican "Debates", the rigged DNC, the nomination of Hillary after all she's done, the nomination of the Clinton's good pal, Donald Trump - I had to give Gary Johnson a more serious look-at.

So I read some things, which sounded good, but then I heard him speak, and No.
Someone else is apparently writing the things on his website, but if they are telling him what to say in interviews, he's not listening.

I was for Rand Paul originally (Republican, but his Party didn't matter, I like him personally). I didn't agree with him about everything, but those were things I could agree to disagree about, like the controversy of the Confederate flag and, well, I forget what else exactly, but nothing serious.

I wanted to like Johnson, I really, really did. I tried. I told myself, well, those aren't really Big Issues....but you know what? If someone screws up so bad on the little issues, how can they possibly be any better dealing with the larger issues?

The Libertarian Candidates had a Debate, and Gary Johnson said  - to sum up - he believed some people should be forced to bake other people cakes.

Most people are like, blah, who cares, but that's actually a Biggie for Libertarians. We don't believe in Government force. That might mean some people can discriminate, but we believe the Free Market will work it out.

He took a lot of heat for saying that, and then wrote a statement defending his position, which you can read at his facebook page here:

Where he absolutely and completely lost me was with this statement: "I responded to that question in the legal context of whether a public business has the right to refuse to serve a member of the public, as distasteful as it might be."

I'm sorry but I just can not get behind someone that doesn't even know the difference between a private and a public business.

That is a big, big deal to me.
If I use my money, put my skill, my time and effort into opening my own business, then it's my private business, and I should be able to decide who, what, how, or when I want to do business with.

Next they'll tell me who I have to let into my own home.
Yes, it is the same thing. Sometimes I allow people that don't live here to come into my house for various reasons, that doesn't make it a "public house".

After that he's just made one stupid comment after another that makes us all look stupid.

"After his speech, Johnson wandered around the convention greeting voters and conducted a round of interviews. One reporter asked him about the lack of diversity in the Libertarian Party, which, as some people remember from college dorm-room discussions, tends to attract a disproportionate number of young white males. Johnson said that there was no diversity problem, and that the Party would do better in nonwhite communities as he became better known. A few minutes later, an aide directed him to a room in the convention center that was named for Harriet Tubman. “Who’s Harriet Tubman?” Johnson asked. (After the aide reminded him who Tubman was, Johnson recalled that she will appear on a new twenty-dollar bill.)" Via Via

"What is Allepo?" Via

"I'm just grateful that nobody got hurt." Via

As if all that weren't bad enough, some of my Ultra Liberal family members/friends has come out in support of Gary Johnson.

That tells me all I need to know about Gary Johnson.
Libertarianism is - supposed to be - the complete opposite of Socialism, even so-called "Democratic Socialism".
That Liberals like Gary Johnson tells me - although I had already determined it myself - he's not Libertarian. 

It also tells me it's the beginning of the demise of the Libertarian Party as we know (knew) it.
It's going to be just one more thing the Liberals take and muck up and change from what it was, to something completely different, kind of like they did with "Liberal" (not Liberal), "tolerant" (not tolerant), and "Socialism" (it's not Socialism, it's Democratic Socialism). Ugh. 

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Rustic (Rusty) Mason Jar Canning Ring Pumpkins

Another Pinteresting idea. I had seen this idea awhile back - who knows how long - and had been saving rusty-ish rings here and there. Over the Summer, my neighbor came into a large stockpile of canned foods cleaned out of a lady that had passed away 's house. She brought them to me to feed the contents to my chickens, and we share the jars. The jars had obviously been put from water bath to box, with water trapped under the ring, which caused them to rust. Re-using rusty rings can cause your lids to not seal during water bathing or pressure cooking, so it's a good idea to not re-use them in canning, if you don't want to risk losing your hard work. 

I used 24 of the regular (not wide mouth) sized rings, facing the same direction, strung them onto a string. I used jute, you can pretty much use whatever will work.

Tied the ends of the jute/string together as tight as I could get it and knotted.

Organized the ring into a nice round circle.

I glued a used wide-mouth canning lid on the bottom to stable/sturdy it/give it a base.

I went outside to the burn pile and found a stick and cut it with a handsaw at an angle to resemble a pumpkin stem. You could also use a pumpkin stem, if you have one, or cinnamon sticks.

I had some old fake flowers I pulled the leaves from, and glued them on. You can also add ribbon, raffia, moss, etc.

I liked the rustic (rusty) look, but you could also spray paint the rings orange or white, or any color you wanted, before tying them up.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Fall Decor v1

 I am running a bit behind here lately, but I managed to shovel out my dining room in time to be able to start my early Fall decorating; Fall Decor v1.

I usually decorate mostly with pumpkins, I love pumpkins, but as I was clearing out my over-filled china cabinet and saw these little red apples, it occurred to me that I was waiting for apple harvesting time from my Dad's apple trees. Apples are actually more relevant to me than pumpkins (I planted pumpkins in July, but couldn't keep the plants watered enough so they shriveled up and died), so why wasn't I using more apples in my Fall decor?

Apples in a lime green Pyrex pie dish
My kitchen was decorated in apple decor when we first moved here, and since I hardly get rid of anything, most of it is in a bin in the attic.

I had this little apple lamp shade, the wicker apples, the metal apple cookie canister, the apple candles in the galvanized bucket, and apple baskets.

The old picture with fruit I picked up a few months ago at the Goodwill Outlet while visiting family in Florida. My sister found me the vintage rooster figurine also at the GWO.

Apple baskets, waiting to be filled with real apples soon

The Pyrex mixing bowls just kind of go along with the 'apples to make a pie in the Pyrex pie dish' theme. Mostly I decided to display them because they've been hidden away in my china cabinet.

The buffet area:

I hung orange plastic tablecloths from Dollar Tree to trim out my wall sheet covering the torn out wall we still never have gotten fixed.

The chandelier I pulled out of Cousin Joe's scrap pile and spray painted it black and glued on battery operated candles. I'm planning to add more decor to it to make it more Halloween-ish.

End of Summer Vacay

Earlier in the year, I forget when exactly, in the Spring sometime, I had caught a bad cold (sinus/respiratory infection), and was piled up on the couch in the livingroom where I could prop up so I could breathe, and watch tv between naps, and generally not bug J trying to sleep in the bedroom.

The Hallmark channel is one of the channels I watch mostly, what little I watch tv, and it was on and they were filming at, or kept advertising, Dollywood, in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.

We'd been to Pigeon Forge before, it's been quite a few years, but we didn't go to Dollywood then. I didn't think the cost of the ticket would be worth it since two of the boys wouldn't ride any of the "good" rides.

They kept talking about Dollywood over and over again until I thought, "We need to go to Dollywood".

We were already booked for a cruise on my birthday week in November, so I thought the week of J's birthday near the end of August sounded good for going to Pigeon Forge.

Turned out it was a great time to go, because most of the kids around here (the South, I guess) had gone back to school and the place wasn't at all crowded. There was nearly NO waiting in lines for the rides.

We went to Dollywood, and to the highest point in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and shopping at Gatlinburg, and had dinner at the Dixie Stampede.

It was a great little vacation!

I posted pictures at my family travel blog here: Dollywood/Great Smoky Mountains Get Away.