Simple-to-make wild bird food for our northwest winter

PB and Yummies for Wild Birds in Winter

You don’t need a fancy feeder to serve this simple wild bird food concoction.  Whip it up, smear it on the nearest post or tree trunk, and store the rest in an airtight tub. You can make it either meaty or vegan–your choice.   Either way, your feathered friends will thank you!

If you cook bacon, save up the grease until you have one cup.  A great way to “up-cycle” something that was destined for the garbage!

If you don’t cook bacon, just substitute lard or vegetable shortening.  You can also mix up a combo of these fats. Continue reading Simple-to-make wild bird food for our northwest winter


This Pet of the Week has some serious moxie!

From the Thurston County Animal Services –

Meet this week’s Pet of the Week: a male cat (ID #111961).

The following pet is available for adoption at Animal Services, located at 3120 Martin Way E in Olympia.

This handsome fellow is around 1-2 years in age. He is looking for a home to share with you!

If this fantastic feline is the one for your family, stop by the shelter to meet him!

You can see other wonderful pets by stopping by the shelter or visiting:


Bring back those amazing plastic bags!

In our household with four kids and a zillion pets, a plastic grocery bag was a treasured thing. I don’t think one ever went to waste.

I never understood the plastic bag recycling container at the supermarket. I always wanted to raid it.  How could people relinquish their bags?  We never had enough of them.

And each one usually went through several uses, before it was finally relegated to its final use—usually something pretty rank.

Lining the diaper pail (the old-time cotton diapers, folks.) Lining a trash can. Cat/guinea pig/bird/hamster/gerbil/rat/ferret refuse.

Kids’ muddy clothes, needing to get from Point A to the laundry room without making an ultra-used car’s interior worse than it already was.

The only thing more valuable was a shoe box. They would be tucked away for those inevitable sad days to come.

They would become the final resting home for small pets that, having breathed their last, would be carefully placed in a ziplock, which would be solemnly zipped shut, then put in a carefully saved shoebox (with tearstained letters), then sealed with duct tape.

Then Steve would dig the latest grave, in the presence of weeping. Once he had carefully laid the box to rest, I would urge him to say some words of comfort. He always gave me That Look…then sighed and proceeded with his latest eulogy.

Big families, tight budgets

We represented that entity that, long ago, used to be the standard bearer of American life and culture.

A large, messy, rowdy, cluttered, busy family—somehow making it work on a budget. Continue reading Bring back those amazing plastic bags!


Winter Clean Up Time in Your Vegetable Garden!

It’s so hard to think about going outside this time of year!  The days are so short and gloomy.  Everything is so wet and any of last summer’s decaying vegetable plants can be so gross and slimy.  Sometimes the occasional rose hip is the most cheerful thing to see.rose hips

But winter clean up and maintenance will make your spring and summer so much easier in your vegetable garden, and more productive! Continue reading Winter Clean Up Time in Your Vegetable Garden!


Lower your heating bills-replace window blinds with pretty no-sew curtains

Both propane and electricity costs are going up this winter.

And strict new wood burning laws make it hard to rely on a trusty wood stove or fireplace.

Slatted window blinds don’t hold out the cold that well.  And it’s hard to keep them dusted.  Besides, they can make your home look as comforting as a dentist office.

The same goes for vertical blinds on sliding glass doors.  They’re hard to keep clean, they don’t look very homey, and they don’t keep out the cold very well. Continue reading Lower your heating bills-replace window blinds with pretty no-sew curtains