How to Get Rid of Squash Bugs

Squash bugs are enough to drive you crazy. You walk out and your garden is growing just fine one minute, and the next there is a crapton of some weird bugs that will drive you mad. Squash bugs seem to appear out of nowhere. One minute nothing and the next BAM! I have no clue where they came from or how they found me, but they did. Stupid bugs.

What are Squash Bugs?

(more…)

How to Freeze Okra

When I decided to start and plant my garden this spring, I asked my family what they would like to see planted. I mean, after all, they were going to be reaping the rewards too. At that point in the day, I think that we were eating lunch (or dinner… but we were definitely eating) and the oldest and my husband had fried okra. They both immediately chimed in and said, Okra.

Okra… um… okay. I know nothing about making fried okra, but okay, I’ll figure it out. Oh wait, you mean you can eat okra that isn’t fried. Okay, I’ll learn about that too while I’m at it. Because, why not. (more…)

“Fifty” Cookies

It’s been a few minutes since I’ve made sugar cookies. But… it’s kind of like riding a bike, right? haha.

Okay, the back story of the Fifty Cookies… So a gal who has ordered cookies from me every year hit me up to see if I still did cookies. Yes. Would I do Fiftieth Wedding anniversary cookies? Yes. Then I got the story behind these cookies. It’s a good one!!

She works in healthcare. Dialysis to be exact. One of her patients has been fighting cancer for a few years. He decided that he wanted to fight until at least his 50th wedding anniversary. They celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on August 10th. How sweet is that?!?! (more…)

How to Can Peaches

It is that time of the year… Peaches!! They are in full supply. I love peaches. They are so great to eat as is or you can can them for later. Like the dead of winter when you are wanting that zesty, sweet taste of summer. There are 2 ways to can, we’ll get to that.

I would like to start some of my own Peach trees, but until that happens, I know where there is a stand on the side of the road ready to sell! And that’s just where I went on Sunday. I also bought a watermelon and my mom a cantaloupe. I don’t like cantaloupe but she does.

A fun side note about the word syrup… Grandma had me reading in her Joy of Cooking Cookbook about freezing peaches. We were looking for sugar measurements. Anyway, they kept spelling syrup, sirup. That spelling was driving me nuts. I wish I was still in Grad School so that I had access to the Oxford English Dictionary to look up the spelling history.

Also, side note: if you are canning anything… canning lids and jars for that matter are difficult to find right now. Supposedly it isn’t a shortage, but more so everyone was home and raising a garden. All canning is happening RIGHT. NOW.

Peaches

Grandma told me that she read that 1 bushel of peaches should produce 15, 20, 30 jars of peaches. It’s so funny that 3 different things she read said 3 different things. Either way, we were well on our way to that. We had 3/4 of a bushel of peaches. We got 13-quart jars and 2 half-full gallon bags for freezing.

Not all the peaches were ready for canning, so grandma’s tip is to lay them out on plastic overnight. The next day most all of them were ready to go. (more…)

Whittier, Alaska

Thursday was my birthday. I kind of got to pick some of the day because of that. After we went to the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center, we decided to go to Whittier. Mom suggested that one. I was game. Anything fun and heck, we were in Alaska on my birthday so everything was fun, am I right!?!? We were only about 12 miles from Whittier so it was perfect. The day was a little wet and rainy which made it a little cool. But no complaints here because at home it was close to 100˚F. We’d take the upper 60’s for sure.

Mom and dad had been to Alaska before. They said that we had to go through a tunnel to get to Whittier. This tunnel was NOT the tunnel… this was a mini tunnel. (more…)

Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center

Guys, have I got the place to tell you about… The Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center! This place rocked!

So, as we’ve learned, my little loves zoos. I had higher hopes for the Alaska Zoo.

On Tuesday when we spent most of what felt like all day laying around the hotel room, I somehow found the Alaska Channel. I’m not sure if that is a hotel thing or if that is actually a thing. Either way, they were talking about different places around Alaska, including the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center.

It is about an hour’s drive from Anchorage to Girdwood where the center is located. You have gorgeous views and let me say this so even those in the back row can hear… IT. WAS. TOTALLY. WORTH. IT. (more…)

Alaska Zoo

While we were in Alaska, we made a trip to the zoo. My little loves the zoo. Honestly, I was very disappointed by the zoo. Heck, the little zoo we went to in Louisiana was much better than this zoo. I wonder if Covid-19 wasn’t part of the problem… but it felt like the zoo wasn’t maintained/kept up with. Most of the animals if they were out (to be seen) were laying down hidden behind tall grass… It was just weird. I hope in a normal year this is better, but I just don’t know. I’ve never been to Alaska prior to this. Guess that means I need to plan a trip in my future 🙂 haha. (more…)

Caribou Grill – Glennallen, Alaska

Our first full day in Alaska we went out driving through the mountains. I made mention that I wanted to go into the mountains and we entered this trip with very little plans. Especially since the Coronavirus has been affecting all daily life everywhere. But I wanted to see beautiful scenery and I wanted to go into the mountains. So, our first day, we did just that.

p.s. I love that at home we have deer crossing signs. Here they have Moose and Elk crossing signs. However, we didn’t see any moose (or elk) in the wild until the last day. more on that to come.

Supposedly you can drive to this glacier. The roads didn’t look right or looked like we were going to have to offroad. Have you ever tried offroading in a minivan? Me either. Not sure I want to either.

This was the Matanuska Glacier. The Matanuska is Alaska’s largest road-accessible glacier, and it’s just 90 minutes from Anchorage. It is 27 miles long and 4 miles wide. It is located 100 miles North-east of Anchorage on the Glenn Highway. It flows about 1 foot per day. (more…)

Talkeetna, AK: Denali Brewpub & Shirley’s Northern Lights Ice Cream

Once we got to Talkeetna and toured a couple of shops, it was time to grab some grub. Wow, I sound so barbarian… grub. haha… Maybe I should say that we spent “so much” time at The Patchwork Moose Quilt Shop that dad and hubby were hungry and tired of waiting. Hubby sent me a text to find the best place in town. I asked Lori where she recommended and her first place was Denali Brewpub followed by a pizza place. Since we had pizza the night before, we decided Denali Brewpub it was. We made it to the restaurant in shifts… The guys led, I was somewhere in the middle and my mom was close behind. haha.

Denali Brewpub

13605 E. Main St
Talkeetna AK

Okay, first off, it was a beautiful day. They had seating mainly outdoors although there was some seating inside. We pulled 2 tables together and enjoyed the beautiful outdoors! It was gorgeous!! The high was 74 degrees. That is actually way cooler minus the humidity from what we were experiencing back home. It was lovely to sit outside in the sun and enjoy! (more…)

Patchwork Moose – Talkeetna, Alaska

We ate breakfast at a restaurant called Gwennie’s Old Alaska Restaurant in Anchorage the day before. Our waitress was so awesome. She asked if we were out of town or locals. When we told her we were on vacation, she asked where all we had been and where we were headed next. Then she suggested heading north to Talkeetna, Alaska. 

The next day we grabbed breakfast as we headed out of town headed north to Talkeetna. The waitress had given us a few different Alaska books to look at and mom and my husband did some research before we headed there. One of the things mom saw was a quilt store located in Talkeetna called The Patchwork Moose. Now, my grandma’s birthday is the same day as mine which also happened to be the week we were on vacation. Very few years have I missed celebrating with Grandma. So we decided to go to the quilt shop to bring grandma back some fabric from Alaska.

The Patchwork Moose

22262 Talkeetna Spur Rd
Talkeetna, Alaska

(more…)