Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Natural Colorants, Signs, and the Wednesday Hodgepodge June 4 2014

Mr. Cranberry, as you know, brings home the oddest little treasures from buildings that are being demo'ed. The sign above my soap botanicals and natural colorants is one of them. I also have ones that read, 'Guidance,' 'Library,' 'Boys,' 'Soiled Utility,' (which is above the laundry room door),  'Meditation Room' (which is above the bathroom door), and various others too numerous to mention.  He set the 'Director of Development' on top of my soap botanicals and it seemed to fit. I have several of those vintage milk sample bottles that I now use to store dried and ground botanicals and natural colorants for my soaps, such as:

Orange Peel
Lemon Verbena
Apple Peel
Cucumber Peel

etc. etc

Because I use only natural colorants.

Just a few of my natural, handcrafted vegan soaps available at:

and at


AND NOW, on to the Hodgepodge.
Join Joyce at 'From This Side of the Pond'
Click on the button below to find her.

1. I've read several posts and status updates recently describing end of year school field trips. Do you remember taking school field trips as a kid? Where did you go and do you recall a favorite? For any parents responding today, have you ever chaperoned a school field trip, and if so where?

 The Ancestors - on a Field Trip
Cutting Tobacco

Wow, that was a long time ago. And back when I was a kid, field trip meant taking a pitcher of Kool-Aid (or water) and a plate of brownies out to my dad and brothers in the hayfield. AND, I think that our class actually went to the local turkey processing plant.

When our kids were still in school, as homeschoolers we took them on field trips to the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, several Civil War Battlefields, Mexico, Boston, New York, Plymouth Plantation, and many other places. We believed that the field trips we took were every bit as important as classroom learning - and probably stuck with them better (and were a lot more fun!)

The next generation of field trips

2. What's something you're tired of seeing online?

Since I only go to my blogging friends' sites and a select few other sites I like, I'd say the one thing I most get tired of seeing is pop-up box surveys. ACK!  Don't they know we hate those??

3. June is the month for roses. Which of the following expressions would you say has most recently applied to your life-'everything's coming up roses', 'there's no rose without a thorn', 'came out smelling like a rose', or 'wearing rose-colored glasses'? 

I would have to say 'NOT wearing rose-colored glasses.'   I see the barn that needs to get repaired and the new roof that needs to be put on the house and the apartment and porch that need to be finished even while checking Travelocity for airfare to London. But I still do it.

Needing a railing, steps, post facings, and corbels

4. When grilling outdoors do you prefer gas or charcoal? Who does the grilling at your house? What's the last thing you ate that was cooked on a grill?

I most definitely prefer a charcoal grill. I wasn't kidding yesterday when I said I like the taste of lighter fluid - if it's just a hint - and of course, charcoal. Both Kevin and I will grill. It depends on what else is happening.

The backyard basswood and pond illumination

5. Are you afraid of the dark?

I've never been completely comfortable with what might be lurking in the dark, including skunks and bears - or serial killers. When I would go outdoors in the dark of night and had my German Shepherd with me, I was way less leery of what might be waiting to 'get me' in the dark. I knew that Bridger would get them, it, her, him, first. Or at least die trying. (I'm really glad that never happened.) When I was a kid, if I ran to my dad in the middle of the night and he assured me that there was nothing there to be scared of, I'd go back to bed and know there was nothing there. I totally trusted him. That's such a nice memory.

Dad and Bridger, both in their later years

6. Share a favorite song with a number in it's title.

The first that comes to mind is Paul Simon's  'Fifty Ways to Leave Your Lover,' which I've always thought was so clever. I'm not advocating anyone leaving anyone, mind you, but you'll have to admit it's clever. And actually it's not like it's a favorite, but the first number song that came to mind. But a favorite would probably be Beethoven's Seventh Symphony, Prokofiev's Piano Concerto #3, (He must have been crazy or a genius, I don't know which!) Vivaldi's Four Seasons, Rachmaninov's Piano Concerto Number 3. We could go on and on with these numbers. And I'm just reminded that I don't listen to these pieces often enough. They're beautiful!

7. "Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves."(C.G. Jung). Do you agree? Why or why not?

If we'll take the time to analyze why we're irritated, it might help us to see that we're probably selfish and/or insecure. And very possibly we're also irritating to others. I know from personal experience that it's very easy to be irritating. :-) It's lots easier to see others' faults, rather than our own. And truly, we're all sinful and selfish. And that's where Mr. Cranberry comes in so handy. I can point out others' faults to him and by the time I'm done, even though he says nary a word, I'm reminded of my own sinfulness. Funny how that works. How nice is Mr. Cranberry. And how loving and merciful is God.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

Why does Petfinder keep sending me photos of available Labrador retrievers, boxers, terriers, etc. when they know that I am looking specifically for a German Shepherd Dog.  But I think I do know why. They're counting on me seeing any poor little dog without a home and caving. VERY easy to do. I'm afraid Petfinder knows me.

'French Lilac & Lavender'
Natural, Handcrafted Vegan Soap

Thank you for reading this incredibly long blog post!



Denise said...

Enjoyed your hodgepodge.

Trace4J said...

Wonderful post.
I love your soap.
My favorite field trip as a girl was to the Zoo.
I heart all animals.
And yes I am still afraid of the dark.
Hubs used to yell at me for leaving lights on all the time.
After 30 years he is finally used to it.
Woolie Wednesday Hugs

Capri K @ No Whining Allowed said...

Love the picture of your Dad and Bridger!

Debbie said...

Good morning! I am seeing many of us have that same feeling about the DOES depend, lol. Enjoyed this, hope the rest of your week is good!

Lois said...

I just love those old milk bottles!

Debby Ray said...

Fun stuff! I love the pic of what looks like a back porch or deck...those old metal chairs bring back such wonderful memories and from what I can see of the view, it is heavenly.

~Lavender Dreamer~ said...

I love those old bottles and you really do use the best natural ingredients for your soaps...they are fantastic! I like seeing your porch...the Christmas tree is gone now! Enjoy your day my friend! Hugs!

Mary said...

So funny that your husband brings home signs from buildings!

Vee said...

You're welcome. I wish you had put that music at the top so I could have enjoyed it all the way through. Yuja Wang is quite amazing, isn't she?! So thanks for that introduction.

I can't comment on everything, though I want to, because I just read an article that said people like me who write books in comments should be banned from Blogdom. Oh well! Let's just say that I found it a fascinating read.

WW said...

Sounds like some great field trips. I bet they learned a lot. I always thought seeing things rather than just reading about them in a book made me learn better.

Anonymous said...

I smiled at your first interpretation of 'field trip' :) I remember those days!

Your memories of your dad and Bridger were sweet, and so was the photograph.

Ruth Kelly said...

You must have signs all over your house making your home very unique. Those old milk bottle still have lids!

Zoanna said...

How sweet is that picture of your dad and your beloved Bridger! Two comforts of your life for sure.
I think Petfinder would send me any ole doggie picture if I let them. I love Goldens, but got suckered into fostering a 14 year old German Shorthaired Painter for 7 months till I had to put her down, all by myself, on Valentine's Day because my husband was in the recovery room from a bad scare. I would not choose an old dog again, but am glad I could love her in her old age when no one else would.

L. D. said...

I have never seen milk bottles like this with the corks for lids.I made me think what we had on our milk bottles and I think it was an aluminum and paper seal, maybe a cardboard circle that fit inside the opening and fit in a groove. Your photos are wonderful.

Eileen H said...

I like signs myself. Just bought one that says "all you need is love and a dog". You inspired me to blog about it!
That's such a nice photo of your Dad with Bridger and a lovely memory to hold on to.

TexWisGirl said...

bridger was handsome. i'd go for a lab in a heartbeat. :)

i liked 'meditation area'. :)

Brenda Kay Ledford said...

Your natural vegan soaps sound so inviting. Your are so talented to make all these kinds of soaps. Your posting brings back field trips we took at the end of school. This is such a nice posting with such lovely memories of the good old days.

Midwest to Midlands said...

I hope you get that airfare to London soon, I know how much you would love to revisit!

Cheryl said...

Funny that your husband brings you these signs! This new one is perfect where you've place it!

Homeschool field trips are the best!

So PetFinder knows you're a soft touch? ;)

Ida said...

Very interesting post. I recall one field trip to a "tree" farm where they showed us a "Pine-apple" tree which actually was a Pine tree that had an Apple Tree graphed onto it.
Those Milk Bottles are cool. I use to work for a produce company, Mojonnier & Sons so that caught my eye right away.
Love the photo of your dad & Bridger.

Daniela @Frugal Aint Cheap said...

great post! I enjoyed reading it

Heide at ApronHistory said...

I am with you an being afraid of what is out in the dark. Ever since last year's skunk episodes I am a little paranoid.

camp and cottage living said...

Have nice Mr. Cranberry is to bring home such treasures to you!
I think your signs sound so cool.
I usually get irritated when I'm tired, so I try to make sure that I get enough sleep.

podso said...

Love those colors! And enjoyed your answers. those oldie songs do come back to us don't they? What a view from your porch! So serene!

Carla from The River said...

I am all for charcoal grilling too.
And as always, I enjoyed your hodgepodge.

NanaDiana said...

This is a great post, Judy! I love all the signs your hubby finds-so much fun.

Living way out in the country we had an hour bus ride to school. I seldom got to go to anything otuside of regular school hours because I had no way to get home. But I did go to a small amusement park when I was in high school and just loved it...and got sick on the Tilt-A-Whirl (after I got off). lol
I like to sleep with a light on somewhere in the house- xo Diana

Unknown said...

Judy I can't tell you how much fun it is to read your Hodge Podge!
You're going to England? ( again? lol ) ?
I'm curious - do your kids home school your grandchildren as well?

Hootin Anni said...

Your answer about 'the dark'...was a sweet memory of your father, I enjoyed that. Even tho a mention of a serial killer was added. [Bridger was very handsome too!!!]

...and the next generation of field trips...sweet photo.

Linda H. said...

We had some similar answers.

I love your answer to question 6. They are all great songs and I am kicking myself for not thinking of them.

Debby@Just Breathe said...

Love those milk sample bottles! Love the field museum in Chicago. I lived 30 minutes East of the loop for 38 years. Visited the museum 2 years ago. You had to mention London....I wish to visit again. It was 3 years ago on June 10th that we went for 3 weeks. I dream about it daily. Great answer for #7.

Donna said...

Director of Development and Soiled Utility - LOL! The question about school field trips hits a sore point with me. I think that way too much time is spent on such trips (especially the travel times), and question whether they should be done at all. I never went on a single school field trip (they were never done way back when) and somehow I managed to turn out to be a very productive and successful adult!


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