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Hodgepodge from The Geranium Farm

Debbie Sharp Loeb, teacher by training but full-time mom to a disabled son, craftsperson, bead artist, great cook, creative homemaker & terrific spotter of cool new products for everything under the sun, presents Hodgepodge: recipes, household hints, stories about children, friends & relatives, cool stuff, music, & much more.

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Thursday, August 31, 2006

Crocheted Scarf Pattern for the Seamen's Church Institute - Christmas-at-Sea Program

Finished Size: 7 1/2" by 42"
Gauge: 4 double crochet stitches = 1 inch
Materials: 4 ply yarn, 5 oz., crochet hook size G

Chain: 32 loosely
Row 1: Right side, double crochet (DC) in 4th chain from hook and in remaining 29 chains.
Row 2: Turn. Chain 3 (counts as first DC, now and throughout), *DC in back loop of next 4 DC. DC in front loop of next DC. Repeat from * through last DC. End with DC in top stitch of turning chain.
Row 3: Repeat Row 2 to desired length, ending with last row on right side.
Fasten off.
PATTERN: DC *DC in back loop of next 4 DC. DC in front loop of next 4 DC*, Repeat ** to end, DC in top stitch of turning chain. Turn.
Please don't add fringe to any scarf.

The Seamen's Chruch Institute of New York and New Jersey
241 Water Street
New York, New York 10038
For help, contact Barbara Clauson, Director of Christmas-at-Sea 212/349-9090, Fax: 212/349-8342

For more patterns and to learn about the Christmas-at-Sea program go to:

Wednesday, August 30, 2006


David's in the hospital for a few days for video EEG monitoring of his seizures. The last time it was done was about 6 years ago by a different doctor. Now this doctor can see exactly what we're talking about with David's various seizures. As it turned out he was headed towards a decline so he had a number of different seizures for them to observe today. Each time he has a seizure I press a button which marks a spot on the video and sends an alarm to the nurses station. So, with that, 3 or 4 people show up to see first hand what's happening with him. He really kept them hopping today!
(Mom had more than her fill of Cartoon Network! I finally got him to change the station and we watched 2 episodes of 7th Heaven. Although not being able to sit there idle, I did work on crocheting a scarf all day for the Seamen's Church Institute - Christmas at Sea Program.)

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Another Old Black and White Photo Transformed

I don't know why my grandmother wrote on the photos but I'm just thankful for modern technology and I was able to fix this neat old photo of my grandmother (Bernice) and her sister with another pair of sisters.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Making a Copy of an Old Black and White Photo

Rozella, Oma, Rowena (my mom) (early 1920's)

Last summer when I was visiting my cousin Sheila she showed me a little album my Grandmother had put together for her mom. In it were some pictures of my mother as a baby and a litle girl. I had never seen pictures of my mother when she was this litle before.
This year with my digital camera I took close-up pictures of the old photos. I used some programs I have to correct and enhance them. They came at really well.

Friday, August 25, 2006

A Riddle

Question: Where's the one place you can't get to fast enough, but once you arrive, you wish you didn't have to be there?

Answer: The dentist, when you have a toothache!

I was up all night with a pain in my jaw. Saw the dentist at noon and then off to the oral surgeon this afternoon. (Then back home and hopefully SLEEP!) I did have warnings that this tooth was on its way out as it had been sensitive to hot and cold for awhile and told the dentist about a month ago when I was in for a regular check up. So nice of it to give me an early warning signal, huh? : (

Back from having roots cleaned out of a large back upper molar. So nice when they just keep finding more and remarking how inflamed it is and how you must have been in a lot of pain. I told him I needed a lot of novacaine right from the start but he said I'd be fine, Yeah fine until you find another root!
Afterwards I said, "See, I told you I need alot of novacaine."
He said, "But everyone says that, but I believe you now."
(Well, alot of goood that does me now I'm thinking. But he did keep adding more as he went.) I said, " And next time I want gas. If I'm gotta go through this at least I want to be laughing!"
"I'll give you a whole tank of gas. You can take a tank home!"

Thursday, August 24, 2006


1. Ricky Nelson, Richard Burton, Samantha Smith, Laura Ashley, Orson Welles, Karen Ann Quinlan, Benigno Aquino, and the U.S. Football League have always been dead.
2. They are not familiar with the source of that “Giant Sucking Sound.”
3. Iraq has always been a problem.
4. “Ctrl + Alt + Del” is as basic as “ABC.”
5. Paul Newman has always made salad dressing.
6. Pete Rose has always been a gambler.
7. Bert and Ernie are old enough to be their parents.
8. An automatic is a weapon, not a transmission.
9. Russian leaders have always looked like leaders everyplace else.
10. The snail darter has never been endangered.
11. There has always been a screening test for AIDS.
12. Gas has always been unleaded
13. They never heard Howard Cosell call a game on ABC.
14. The United States has always had a Poet Laureate
15. Garrison Keillor has always been live on public radio and Lawrence Welk
has always been dead on public television.
16. Their families drove SUVs without “being fuelish.”
17. There has always been some association between fried eggs and your brain.
18. They would never leave their calling card on someone’s desk.
19. They have never been able to find the “return” key.
20. Computers have always fit in their backpacks.
21. Datsuns have never been made.
22. They have never gotten excited over a telegram, a long distance call, or a fax.
23. The Osmonds are just talk show hosts.
24. Undergraduate college athletes have always been a part of the NBA and NFL draft.
25. They have always “grazed” for food.
26. Three-point shots from “downtown” have always been a part of basketball.
27. Test tube babies are now having their own babies.
28. Stores have always had scanners at the checkout.
29. The Army has always driven Humvees.
30. Adam and PC Junior computers had vanished from the market
before this generation went online.
31. The Statue of Liberty has always had a gleaming torch.
32. They have always had a PIN number.
33. Banana Republic has always been a store, not a puppet government in Latin America.
34. Car detailing has always been available
35. Directory assistance has never been free.
36. The Jaycees have always welcomed women as members
37. There has always been Lean Cuisine.
38. They have always been able to fly Virgin Atlantic.
39. There have never been dress codes in restaurants.
40. Doctors have always had to deal with “reasonable and customary fees”
and patients have always had controls placed on the number of days they could stay
in a hospital.
41. They have always been able to make photocopies at home.
42. Michael Eisner has always been in charge of Disney.
43. They have always been able to make phone calls from planes.
44. Yuppies are almost as old as hippies.
45. Rupert Murdoch has always been an American citizen.
46. Strawberry Fields has always been in New York.
47. Rock and Roll has always been a force for social good.
48. Killer bees have always been swarming in the U.S.
49. They have never seen a First Lady in a fur coat.
50. Don Imus has always been offending someone in his national audience.

In all fairness it should be understood that students entering college this fall do have
a few items on their own lists that will separate them from many of their mentors:

1. For many of them today, it’s all about the “bling, bling.”
2. They know who the “heroes in a half shell” are.
3. Peeps are not a candy, they are your friends.
4. They have been “dissing”and “burning” things all their lives.
5. They can expect to get a ticket for “ricing out their wheels.”
6. They knew how to pop a Popple and trade a Pog.
7. They can still sing the rap chorus to the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
and the theme song from Duck Tales.

© 2003 Beloit College, Beloit, Wisconsin.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

License Plates are Being Stolen

This is true:
See Snopes

"A woman said her son found his license plate missing so he called the
police to file a report. They told him people were stealing the plates to
get free gas Given the rise in gas prices, people have taken to stealing
license plates, putting them on their car, then getting gas and running.
The gas station will have "your" license plate # and you could be in
trouble for "Pump and Run." Check your car periodically to be sure you
still have a plate. If you should find it missing, file a report immediately!!!"

"When the license plate is reported as the "drive off vehicle", it's YOU they contact! Be aware of your license plates, most of us never look to see if they're there. "

Thanks Joan for sending this along.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

A David Moment - Who's the Man?

The other day David was at his computer and having difficulty trying to load a program. He asked Paul for help. After he got it up and running he looked at him expecting a "Thank You". David, cracking up with a big grin on his face, turned to his dad and said, "You're the man!"

Monday, August 21, 2006

Food Timeline / Food Allergy

The Food Timeline is an interesting website. There's history, recipes, facts, and lore all rolled into one.

Also listed at the bottom is the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network and from the U.S. Food and Drug administration FOOD ALLERGIES RARE BUT RISKY . Two important sites to keep in mind if you know anyone with food allergies.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Baby Quilt

Latest baby quilt made for a gift. The colors are softer than they appear in the picture.

Copyright © 2007 Deborah Sharp Loeb

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Jury Duty Scam

In case you hadn't gotten this email I thought I'd pass it along.
In this con, someone calls pretending to be a court official who threateningly says a warrant has been issued for your arrest because you didn't show up for jury duty. The caller claims to be a jurycoordinator.
If you protest that you never received a summons for jury duty, the scammer asks you for your Social Security number and date of birth so he or she can verify the information and cancel the arrest warrant.
Sometimes they even ask for credit card numbers. Give out any of this information and
bingo! Your identity just got stolen.
This is true according to:

Thanks Joan for passing this along.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

TV Show MacGyver

If you were a fan of the show and wondered how MacGyver got himself out of all those fixes. Well, here's a
List of problems solved by MacGyver

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

The Human Camera

This is something you just have to see to believe. Put your sound on.
Stephen Wiltshire: The Human Camera

Thanks Joan for sharing!

Monday, August 14, 2006

Please take this opportunity to say Thank You to our troops.

Try this from Xerox.
If you go to this web site,, you can pick out a thank you card and Xerox will print it and it will be sent to a soldier that is currently serving in Iraq. You can't pick out who gets it, but it will go to some member of the armed services.
How AMAZING it would be if we could get everyone we know to send one!!!
This is a great site. Please send a card. It is FREE and it only takes a second.
Wouldn't it be wonderful if the soldiers received a bunch of these?
Whether you are for or against the war, our guys and gals over there need to know we are behind them...

Thanks Carrie for passing this along

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Homemade Denim Placemats

To see those placemats I had made all set out, go back to July 5th, 2006 posting.

Friday, August 11, 2006

$1 Coupon for Downey Wrinkle Releaser

For a $1 coupon for Downey Wrinkle Releaser call: 1 - 800 - 414 - 7281

Thursday, August 10, 2006


Here's something else from the cousin's reunion. This is a Quillow made by my cousin Sheila's mother-in-law, Delores Grier (Mt. Hope,KS) . A quillow is a lap quilt that folds up into a pocket to form a pillow when not in use. This one measures 62 1/2" by 45". The pocket is 16 1/2" square.
Here's one place with a poem, instructions, and how to fold a quillow:

For more information just put Quillow in your search engine.
Oh, and the pocket is a nice place to tuck in your feet!

This Quillow Folded into a Pillow

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

The Birth of a Hummingbird

"This is truly amazing. Be sure to click on NEXT PAGE at the bottom of each page; there are 5 pages in all. A lady found a hummingbird nest and got pictures all the way from the egg to leaving the nest. It took 24 days from birth to flight. Because you'll probably never in your lifetime see this again, enjoy, and please share."
Go to this site:

Thanks Carrie for passing this along.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Good Search

By using as your search engine you can have money donated to your favorite school or charity. Since there are tens of thousands of Geranium Farmers out there just think how much could be generated for Episcopal Relief and Development as just one of the registered charities.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Free Priority Mail Military Shipping Kits

The USPS provides free Priority Mail shipping supplies for customers sending packages to U.S. military personnel overseas. To find out more about this go to this "Snopes" link:

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Watch or Set You TV Recording Devices

From the Food Network program - "The Secret Life of": Drive-Ins

I did a write up on Circus Drive In and it will be featured on this show. See Hodgepodge post: Tuesday, April 12, 2005

"They brought a new way of dining to a generation of automobile-loving Americans. They evoke memories of poodle skirts and roller-skating waitresses. Today, you can get anything there from a juicy cheeseburger and fries to hot dogs, crab sandwiches and even a Hawaiian plate lunch! Join host Jim O’Connor as he drives his way to Dallas, the city where they all started, to New Jersey for a drive-in where crab sandwiches are all the rage and to the far reaches of Waikiki Beach where a local drive-in serves hamburgers next to ahi."

Also featured on this program are:

The Rainbow Drive In


Didley's Car Hop

Stewart's Root Beer Drive In

To find out where these Drive Ins are located go to:,1976,FOOD_17616_44612,00.html

August 07, 2006 10:00 PM ET/PT
August 08, 2006 1:00 AM ET/PT
August 12, 2006 3:00 PM ET/PT
August 13, 2006 5:30 PM ET/PT

Friday, August 04, 2006

The Saw Doctors

Wednesday night I attended my first Saw Doctors concert with my concert going buddy Diane and her husband Doug. Yeah, this is one band that Doug will go see. Actually they've been big fans for a long time and after Diane gave me a CD to listen to, I just had to go see them also. It had to be one of the hottest days of the year and even with the AC cranked up in the old Surf Club, by the time the crowd filled in and started singing with the band it was much hotter! You couldn't help but be pulled into the excitement of the crowd though. Oh, and of course we were right in front of the stage. Next time ear plugs! It took hours to regain my hearing. It was well after 2am before I got home, took a shower (had to), and headed off to bed totally wiped out!
Now if your wondering what kind of music they play, it's Irish rock. Their website is:
Go to to give a listen.
One more thing, at the end of the concert, my ever wacky friend Diane, wrote a note saying she'd pay $20 for the lead singer's towel. He read the note, said he wouldn't take the money, and gave her the towel.

I didn't take my camera as the flash isn't working but I did give my email address to a girl who was, and if she does get some pictures to me I'll post some here.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Use Your Car Alarm as a Home Alarm

I received the following email from my friend Carrie and thought I'd pass it along.

Click here to read what snopes has to say:

"This is a really cool idea.
Next time you come home for the night and you to to put your keys away, think of this:
It's a security alarm system that you probably already have and requires no installation.
Start keeping your car keys next to your bed on the night stand when you go to bed at night.
If you think someone is trying to get into your house, or if you hear a noise outside your house,
just press he panic alarm on your car key chain. Test it' It will go off from most everywhere inside your house and will keep honking until your battery runs down or until you reset it with the button on the key fob chain. It works if you park in your driveway or garage.

If your car alarm goes off when someone is trying to break in your house, odds are the burglar or rapist won't stick around.....after a few seconds all the neighbors will be looking out their windows to see who is out there and sure enough the criminal won't want that.

Try yours to make sure it works before you rely on it. Just know that you must press the alarm button again to turn it off.

And remember to carry your keys while walking to your car in a parking lot. The alarm can work the same way there.....

This is something that should really be shared with everyone. Maybe it could save a life or a sexual abuse crime."

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Chocolate-Caramel Fantasy

2 cups chocolate wafer crumbs (about 38 wafers)
1/3 cup butter, melted

30 vanilla caramels
1/2 cup caramel ice cream topping
1/4 cup whipping cream
2 cups chopped pecans

3/4 cups semisweet chocolate pieces
1/4 cup whipping cream

In a medium bowl stir together chocolatae wafer crumbs and melted butter.
Press onto the bottom oa a 9" springform pan and bake for 10 minutes at 350 degrees. Cool.

In heavy saucepan, melt caramels in carmel ice cream topping over low heat, stirring often. Stir in 1/4 cup whipping cream.
Remove from hear, stir in nuts. Spread over crust.
Cover and chill for at least 1 hour.

In heavy saucepan, melt chocolate chips.
Remove from heat, stir in remaining whipping cream.
Drizzle or spread over caramel pecan mixture.
Cover and chill at least 1 hour.

Makes 12 servings.

Another recipe from my cousin Merry Johnson, from the reunion.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

The Four Agreements

During our get away for the cousins reunion, my brother and I read The Four Agreements by Don Miguel and Don Jose Luis. We highly reccomend to everyone.

The following is from the website:

"Everything we do is based on agreements we have made - agreements with ourselves, with other people, with God, with life. But the most important agreements are the ones we make with ourselves. In these agreements we tell ourselves who we are, how to behave, what is possible, what is impossible. One single agreement is not such a problem, but we have many agreements that come from fear, deplete our energy, and diminish our self-worth."

"In this powerful book that has remained on The New York Times Bestseller List for over five years, don Miguel reveals the source of self-limiting beliefs that rob us of joy and create needless suffering. When we are ready to change these agreements, there are four deceptively simple, yet powerful agreements that we can adopt as guiding principles. The Four Agreements offer a powerful code of conduct that can rapidly transform our lives to a new experience of freedom, true happiness, and love."

A summary of: The Four Agreements

To really understand The Four Agreements you need to read the book. It's a very quick read.

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