Monthly Archives: February 2011

In Celebration of General and Mrs. Washington

In commemoration of the birth of our First President, I offer this recipe named after his wife. Although I don’t know how it came to be named after the First Lady, I seriously doubt it reaches back into the early years of our country. Who developed this candy? I don’t know, but I’m certainly glad they did.

MARTHA WASHINGTON CANDY

1 stick butter, melted
1 lb. Angel Flake Coconut
1 lb. pecans, chopped fine – but not too fine
1 can Eagle Brand milk
1 1/2 lb. powdered sugar

1. Mix all ingredients thoroughly.
2. Roll into 1″ balls.
3. Chill for 30 minutes.
4. Melt 2) 6 oz. packages chocolate chips with 4 oz. paraffin in double boiler. Keep the heat on low.
5. Using toothpicks, dip each ball into melted chocolate to coat thoroughly.
6. Place dipped balls onto waxed paper covered cookie sheet to set.
7. Remove toothpicks.

Notes:
*The taste of this candy is very much like an Almond Joy, except for the pecans. And substituting or adding pecans never hurt anything. Fresh, local pecans are best if you can get them. I didn’t realize it for years, but they do make a difference in the taste.

*The first time I made this recipe, I was offended by the paraffin and tried to omit it. It was a real mess and wouldn’t set.

*Keep most of the dough balls in the refrigerator while you’re dipping, bringing out only a few at at time. They quickly warm to room temperature and will slide off the toothpick when dipping.

*Store them in the refrigerator except when you bring them out to serve; this keeps the chocolate from getting warm and sticky.

*After they set up on the waxed paper cookie sheet and there is a little hole left in the top of each piece of candy where the toothpick has been removed. This bothers my husband (hereafter known as the Creative Perfectionist). His solution is to take spoonfuls of the melted chocolate and drizzle it over the tops, filling the holes. This makes a lovely presentation and gives the look of expensive, handmade chocolates. Well, they are handmade, but they aren’t all that expensive.

*Normally I don’t like “shortcut” candy, cakes, etc., but this is a really good recipe with a wonderful flavor.

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Filed under Cooking, Food, Recipes, Washington's Birthday

Floral Altered Book pages

from Fran's Floral Altered Book

These page layouts are from an altered book my sister made; her theme was Flowers.

On this page, she distressed the pages with purple and buff colored stamp pads, used a daisy rubber stamp, magazine clippings for the flowers and heart. The wavy floral paper scrap was from a drapery sample book, which she ran through a crimper. Also she stamped a tulip on a layered tag and used a bit of photocopied ephemera.

From Fran's Floral Altered Book

This is one of my favorite altered book pages of all time. The purple flower is a silk one, and I wouldn’t have thought of using it because it’s so thick and bulky – but it’s perfect.

Besides the silk flower, she used a purple stamp pad for distressing the page, embroidered ribbon, words cut from a magazine (Home Grown and Spring), rubber stamp, and a decorative paper napkin.

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Filed under Altered Books, Cozy, Crafts, Crafts - Cheap, Crafts - Paper, Family, Using What You Have

Vintage Valentine Activity Page

(It looks a little distorted because the original is oversized; the quality clears up when you click on the image.)

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Filed under 1940s, 1943, Activity Page, Ephemera, Fun, Valentine's Day, Vintage Magazines

A Mini Beach Vacation

Oklahoma is having record low temperatures (last night Bartlesville was 28 degrees below zero) and even though it’s a little better here in Texas, I think we could all do with a little beach time.

For those of us who won’t be hopping a plane for a tropical island, here’s a little 10 minute getaway.

We’ll start with a montage of surfing stills accompanied by the Surfaris playing Wipeout. Click here.

This one has some of the best surfing video I’ve ever seen with the Beach Boys singing Catch a Wave.


And let’s close with the Beach Boys singing Kokomo with some great beach shots.

Ahhh…. Galveston…..springtime…..

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Filed under Current Events, Galveston, Texas, Winter, YouTube

February Snow Scenes

Joe put his ear muffs on this morning, went out back and took these. The snow looks like God put glitter on top of it.

Rabbit tracks.

Probably dog – could be coyote.

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Filed under Texas, Winter

Winter in North Texas??


It sleeted then snowed here on Monday night. We usually get something like that once or twice a winter here in north Texas, and sometimes an even heavier snow but what has been really unusual is:
how cold it has been,
how long it has stayed that cold,
how long the snow has stayed
and that it snowed on top of previously fallen snow.

This is the first time this has happened since we moved here almost 30 years ago.


Thankfully, Joe’s job allows him to work from home at times like this, so we haven’t had the worry of having to get out on the roads. For several days we hadn’t been any farther than giving hay to the next-door-donkey or the mailbox.

However, cabin fever was setting in (I know how silly that sounds after 4 measly days) and this afternoon we ventured into town to the grocery store. Our country road (and the others we traveled on to get to the highway) were still snowy and frozen but the highway was fairly clear.


It was really beautiful and a pleasure just to get out.


We passed a dad and some kids who’d made a snow fort. I had never seen one and commented that they must be from up north.

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Filed under Texas, Winter

Vintage Doily Valentines


(Click on the image to enlarge – the words become legible.)

This page is from the February 1943 issue of Children’s Activities magazine. After working at Children’s Activities, Garry and Caroline Myers started Highlights for Children, then eventually bought C.A. The similarities are obvious – they are both high quality magazines with fun and educational activities.

I apologize for the quality of the scans. The magazine is oversized and won’t fit on my scanner so I had to take photographs and they aren’t perfect.

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Filed under 1940s, 1943, Childhood pastimes, Crafts - Paper, Ephemera, Valentine's Day, Vintage Magazines

George Washington Silhouette



Here’s the George Washington silhouette that I promised last February. The above tracing is from the instruction page (last photo in this post) and enlarged to 200%. The nose is not quite right. If you prefer to trace your own, click on the instruction page to enlarge it, then click again on the magnifying glass.

It’s the closest I could find to the ones that we always cut out and used for crafts back in the early 60s when I was in elementary school at Mingo.

Go here for the Lincoln silhouette outline.

One additional note: an optional background is to print off the Declaration of Independence setting the darker/lighter button much lighter than normally for the font. For an antiqued look, use a tan piece of cardstock.

These pictures are all from Holiday Touches for the Country Home, Memories in the Making Series by Leisure Arts.

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Filed under Crafts, Crafts - Cheap, Crafts - Paper, Heros, Holidays, Using What You Have, Washington's Birthday