Fashion Plate

If you like Texas Jot, please take a look at my other blog, Fashion Plate. It is the home of my handmade retro Barbie clothes and lots of delicious recipes from my cookbooks.

Monday, February 18, 2013

It's Been Fun!

After 503 posts (whew!), I am ready to retire from the blog business for a while.  It has taken an enormous amount of time to research, edit, etc. for all these years.  I still have a third cookbook to finish, a novel to get ready for Kindle and my store on Etsy, so I won't be bored.  Thanks for keeping up with Texas Jot.   Cece

It's all behind me now...

Duct tape underwear: so flattering!

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Soundtrack for Fifty Shades of Gray Trilogy

When I first saw it, I thought the book  Fifty Shades of Gray was going to be about life in a retirement home. Obviously, you can judge a book by its title.

I have been fascinated about the recent popularity of trilogies such as Hunger Games, Twilight and now E.L James' Gray books. At first, I figured reading something was better than being on the phone or computer, but I am afraid I was wrong.
Let me clarify that I have NOT read any of these books:
 Fifty shades of Gray
 Fifty Shades Darker
 Fifty Shades Freed
But, after reading so many reviews of the Gray books, I find difficult to believe the mother for two teenage sons thought that these books were a good idea. The consensus (out of 17,000 reviews on Amazon) is they are not well written, have weak plots and not consistent with the language used in the United States.  (I've yet to hear an American declare they are "on holiday.") That is just sloppy research.

In a really great review, meymoon comments," Take out the parts where the female character is blushing or chewing her lips and the book would be down to 50 pages." (out of 528)
It seems to be a contest to see who can write the wittiest review, but Katrina Lumsden (Goodreads) has done quite an amusing piece, including over-used words from Gray.
"oh my"  79
mummers 193
whisper(s) 199
The author takes exception to the books being referred to as "mommy porn."  I do, too.  It denigrates mommies.  Her reason to take offence with the term is she feels that it was coined by misogynists who don't think women should enjoy sex.  I guess she somehow missed the fact that her main character is being abused and manipulated by a man.  Sounds like fun to me! I can see why one reviewer commented, "I bought the whole set for my mom for Christmas."
If you've read the books and are looking for more fun, try the Fifty Shades of Gray boardgame.  This is recommended for ages 15-18.  For a mere $26, you too can see how "fun and liberating" it can be.
Typical question:  "Which of your friends is most likely to have an affair with her boss?" I know I'd love my 15-year-old to be playing this game.
Since Gray ranks number 8 in the Amazon top 100 books and there is a movie deal in the works, the  trilogy isn't going away anytime soon.  I thought I'd jump on the bandwagon and make a little cash off this strange and perverted phenomena. I hope I'm not too late, as it already hit the home improvement store.

My idea?  A soundtrack to play while you're reading the books.
Don't miss out on this great opportunity!  My digitally re-mastered masterpiece CD includes some hot songs to get you in touch with your "inner goddess".
Chains of Love by Erasure
Beat Me Daddy, Eight to the Bar by The Andrews Sisters
The Ties that Bind by Bruce Springsteen
Whip It by Devo
Chains by The Cookies
Iron Maiden by Iron Maiden
Queen of Torture by Wishbone Ash
When the Whip Comes Down by the Rolling Stones
Woman in Chains by Tears for Fears
King of Pain by The Police
Beat It by Michael Jackson
Leather by Tori Amos
Rawhide by Frankie Laine
Pain by Three Days of Grace
Princess of the Night by Saxon
These Boots by Nancy Sinatra
Be the first to get your copy of S&M's Greatest Hits.  Only $69.95!* Call 1-800-IMA -PERVERT to order.
*Does not include shipping,  handling or smut peddler tax.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Valentine Warning

If you are a follower of Texas Jot, you know that every year I try to give some Valentine's Day shopping advice.  This morning I felt compelled to dash to my computer and warn all the males that under no circumstances is a 4 1/2-foot teddy bear an appropriate expression of love.

The Vermont Teddy Bear Factory would have you believe that your loved one will rejoice in having this  cuddly monstrosity arrive at her house. Put down the phone.  1-800-anything is not the correct choice.  Unless this bear is holding a diamond ring, you may find that this overstuffed creature is sleeping in your bed while you are on the couch.  Or maybe, you will find it wedged in the closet with your golf clubs or strapped in the front seat of your sports car.
Guys, you've got 10 days...Now go out there and get a Valentine's Day card before they are all picked over. Stop by the salon, restaurant or garden center she likes and get a gift card.  Insert card in Valentine.  Sign it with love.  Seal the envelope and wait. You'll look like a hero come the 14th.

Friday, February 1, 2013

Diet Motivation

Need a little motivation to jump start your good dietary intentions?  It seems PARTNER and his trainer at the gym made a little wager to see who would be the first to lose 10 pounds and keep it off for a month.
Poor PARTNER has only me for a cheering section...and my persistent flow of baked goodies to help him along.  The trainer, however, has told all his clients and the ladies are bringing him tuna and pasta at lunch, to keep him away from fast food.  Now, is that fair?I think I will be sending samples of all my recipe testing to the gym from now on to keep the guys on an even playing field.
I would like to get a piece of this wager, but there's is no way I'm going up against two men losing weight. Men drop the pounds like magic.  Maybe they would cut me a break and let me lose 5 pounds and keep it off.  Sounds more equitable to me.  I will keep you posted.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

The Portion Diet

Are you just as sick as I am of those diet and exercise commercials that bombard one in January?  We all know (at least MOST of us know) that these diets seldom work .  The only real way any of us is going to lose weight AND keep it off is to stop eating so much.

Yikes!  That is a big difference between the served portion and the proper portion.  Just think of the money you will save.  Two can eat as cheaply as one.
If you don't have a lovely serving poster to carry around with you for each restaurant's fare, try using these common items to keep your portion size in check.

I will admit that in the last week, I have baked, chocolate cake, M&M cookies and banana bread...but I just had a small serving of each.  If you follow my recipe blog ( you can find recipes for lots of tasty treats that will make your reduced portion life a little more bearable. Stop wasting calories on sodas (and all that sodium) and let dessert be your treat for a meal well-portioned.
Just couldn't resist this bit of portion control fun.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Pin-ups Know What to Wear on Valentines' Day

On Valentine's Day, you may have a hot date or plan a dinner for two at home, but the question is the same.  What do I wear?  Do you go for the traditional red or pink?  Maybe you're thinking about the always appropriate little black dress and looking like you're not trying too hard.
These gals had the right idea. Forget being subtle.
Marilyn Monroe
Cyd Charisse
Anne Gywnne
Marilyn Monroe
I'm thinking this little get-up will capture PARTNER's has that perfect Diamond B Ranch vibe. I'm just not sure they'll let me into the Petroleum Club wearing this and carrying a cap gun. Anyway, I think I have a greater chance in that outfit than wearing something from the modern era Tactical Girls calendar. Give me the 1940's pin-up look any day...cute and sexy.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Fun at the Harbaugh's House

I came from a family of four girls and one brother.  Even though he had many of us to inflict damage upon, I came away from childhood with some tangible memories of the terror he could cause.  I was shot in the stomach with a BB gun, lived in fear of the phrase," I'm going to tell Mom." and still sport a facial scar from a collision during a chase.
So, what was it like for baby sister, Joani, growing up amid all that Harbaugh competitive testosterone? While the world touts her brothers for their ascent to the Super Bowl, I think she probably deserves more credit just for surviving childhood. I guess it must have not been too bad, as she married a basketball coach.

Mr. and Mrs. Harbaugh (Jackie and Jack) look like rational folks.  I'm not sure what parenting techniques they used, but it is a nice reflection on their family relationship, today. I guess the family that plays together, stays together.

My daughters timidly swung the Socker Boppers at each other, but never did get into hand-to-hand combat.  Were they part of the Harbaugh toy chest, too?

We totally missed the Rock 'Em Sock 'Em Robots, but I can imagine the game would have provided another source for two boys to let off steam.
I think next Sunday will be an extremely difficult and emotional day for Jackie and Jack. Whatever the result, they can certainly be proud of their entire family.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Apache's Good Cop

Just when I think the folks at Apache don't have a brain cell among them, something occurs which gives me pause.  After meeting our landman (we'll just call him Buddy), I have to believe that someone at Apache must indeed have a spark of intelligence.
Buddy was hired by Apache to do all the dirty work.  He deals directly with the landowners and handles their complaints and concerns.  After speaking with a few of Garden City's residence, I can tell you that he has a HUGE, thankless task. If you follow this blog, you will have some idea of what we have endured for the 15 months that Apache has been drilling on the Diamond B.
The bright spot in all this is Buddy.  Buddy is a nice guy.  If he wasn't beholding to Apache, I could imagine striking up a friendship with him.  He SEEMS so concerned about the state of our property and never fails to compliment on what with have achieved with our little section of what was once wilderness.  It is difficult to get too mad at a person when they are agreeing with you.  In other words...Buddy is a genius when it comes to soothing ruffled feathers.  You almost  believe he is as pained as you are to see trash thrown all over your property.  This guy so is good at being the good cop.
While the rest of the Apache organization is slow to respond, Buddy answers his phone and returns calls. He may not always accomplish what we need done, but he sure is good at apologizing.  He also has a secret accomplice who is familiar with the families in the area. If Apache ever lets this guy get away, they are even dumber than I give than credit for.
So, Good Cop Buddy, how about getting those slush pits cleaned up and reclaimed? I can't stand another summer of smelling those nasty things.  It has been over a year on some of them.  I'm about ready to call in the EPA.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Irene Iddesleigh: Worst Book Ever Written?

When I discovered a novel labeled as the worst book ever written, it peaked my interest.  I have read some really bad books.  Did this piece of fiction really hold up to the hype?  I dove into Irene Iddesleigh by Mrs. Amanda McKittrick Ros with high hopes.
I will say the sequencing of the story seemed fine, the character unlovable and narrow-minded, but the main stumbling block to this book is the prose.  Wordy, wordy, wordy!  If you are a fan of alliteration,  you will be in hog-heaven:
"pillaged pillow of poverty"  Not sure what the even means.
"linen of loose lore and lengthy wear"  Isn't that how they are wearing linen these days?
"pebbled with principle, piety, purity and peace" Sounds like a fun date.
This work was published by her (adoring? blind? brow-beaten?) husband as a gift.  Maybe he hoped to keep her occupied writing books for years to come. Those who actually ordered the book received a personal letter from the author...nice touch....I just wonder how long the letters were.

If your book club can't decided what the next work should be, get everyone to download the FREE Kindle version of Irene Iddesleigh and let the fun begin.  The plot of this book is guaranteed to drive women crazy unless they are into duty, sacrifice and domineering men.

I can imagine all type of contests:
Who can read an entire page aloud without mistake or laughter?
Who can find the longest alliteration.
What is the most detailed explanation of an item without actually using its common name?

Honestly, this isn't the worst book I've ever read, but it it sure easy to find lots of things wrong with it.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

PR Problem for Big Spring?

As much as I've complained about the oil industry and the havoc taking place at the Diamond B, I think maybe the town of Big Spring has a larger problem.  PARTNER and I were there a few months ago and we spotted this in the HEB parking lot.  I'm not sure how you explain that one to your child.

Just wondering, but isn't against the law to have obscenity on your vehicle?