Category Archives: Buffalo Gals Mercantile
That’s what a seamstress/creative and a world class coffee roaster have in common.
“When people talk, community happens” –Becky McCray
(And let me tell you…. Jo and I can TALK!!)
We are a community. A community of entrepreneurs. A community of women. A community of small town advocates. A community of creatives . A community of givers and do-ers~It only takes two to be part of a ‘community’
~The funny thing about our “community” is that we don’t even live in the same town. Not even the same part of the state!~
I met Jo Kahlifa , at a local Pride of Dakota event a number of years ago. We instantly became friends and have since done a number of exciting things jointly both personally and with our businesses. ( check out MoJo Roast and read about her and the coffees)
The fact that we are a “community” was driven home this past week when we attended an OTA conference. (NorthDakOTA,MinnesOTA,SouthDakOTA) Part of the purpose was to bring together creatives from towns across a tri-state area to help transform where we live into great , re-envisioned communities. Places where people once again gather and talk to each other instead of about each other. Communities where roots are put down and dreams are realized.
Community matters. In so many ways. And Community is not always where you live. Often it is what you do.
~ Today on the radio I listened to an interview between well known Italian chef Gino D’Acampo and a British talk show host… and of course the moment I got in the house I HAD to Google the live event….
In a nut shell~ The host insults the poor man by saying “If you just add ham….” who quickly replies with
“if’a my Grand-a-mutha had wheels, she’d’a be a bike-a”
Can you Hear the cadence and inflection in your head?? I can.
I laughed and laughed.
Because I am half Italian. and I understand. COMPLETELY.
~When we were younger, my brother told my mother that her cooking was “ALMOST as good s Chef-Boy-R-Dee”
My mother went on strike with some gestures and muttering with what we loosely translated to mean “If we ever wanted another hot meal, we’d damn well better fix it ourselves because we sure the heck-0 weren’t getting it from her.” (ever)
I actually have some very funny stories about being Italian… But we’ll save those for a later date! WHY??? Because I will have to run fast when my Mother finds out I put her picture in here! ~
Always an adventure.
The hubby tries. He really does.
But you would think, being that we actually live in the same house- he would KNOW my tastes…
I have learned over the years to be pretty specific.
There was the year that I had mentioned new pots and pans were needed… (waaaaaaaay before Christmas!) and an Electric Skillet with 5 pounds of Potatoes appeared
This year my list looks a lot like a ransom note.
I cut out pictures of item specific things I would like and pasted them to paper along with Where they could be gotten. I only listed the stores I actually thought he would go IN
Fingers are crossed!
So my cousin Hannah has come for a month long visit to our farm. She is 9 years old.
At first I was “What am I supposed to DO with a GIRL?” We raised Boys!
~As it turns out, there was nothing to fear.~ We both speak SARCASM fluently.
She was (is) a self admitted “indoor” girl.
Well- things have changed a smidge.. I am sure her Mama will have a few bad habits to break!
BOOTS go with everything. Hannah has worn her boots more that her sandals and hasn’t even touched tennis shoes yet. 🙂
COOKIES for breakfast are ok sometimes.
WALKS are great for dream making… Hannah wishes to be an Artist or a Fashion Designer… I hope she follows her dreams, where ever they may lead.
Dirt won’t kill you… we have been in the garden daily. she has learned to simply rub things that fall in the dirt on her pants and keep on going…
She can DO ANYTHING. She has learned that with a little perseverance and cussing, all tasks are do-able! So very proud of her!!
Coffee nearly BLACK… and a sweet tooth for French Vanilla flavoring.
POLKAand two-step are a must have in the dance repository if you want to be ‘social’ around these parts.
HAY BALES are great fun. So is the quad and the dog. CHICKENS will follow you like the Pied Piper.
Well~ I gotta run. More on our adventures later…. sewing, baking, swimming, dancing and more! We have MEMORIES to go make!
I use burlap in many of the projects I make at Buffalo Gals Mercantile. I love the rustic-ness of it. The graphics on the vintage bags are fabulous and truly speak of our Agricultural roots and early advertising.
Burlap is biodegradable- we actually use the scraps on the garden. It’s a natural soil enhancer and weed barrier. We just till it in at the end of the season. “Post consumer burlap compost creates a constantly renewable product that increases soil fertility, rather than depleting it” -The Green Building Handbook
Burlap is recyclable. – Use old bags to make purses, chair covers, window treatments, accessories, table runners, stuffed animals, lamp shades … the ideas are limitless really. Here’s a link to Pintrest with fabulous ideas!
Did you know…. Statistics show that Burlap is quickly gaining in popularity and may surpass Cotton as the most used natural fiber?
Burlap is Eco-Friendly & Eco- Chic . A great way to use it is as a market tote. No more plastic bags! And it’s quite the fashion statement as well.
How did wanting 4 layers and 1 noisemaker (rooster) turn into 50 chicks and 10 ducks????
I was perfectly ok with buying a few grown layers from the neighbor. But alas, over coffee with the father-in-law…they morphed!
(but he did promise he would help at butchering time)
And Yes…. If I thought for a minute I could add food coloring to their water and make them change color ~ I WOULD~ 🙂
Our cows are mostly Catholic according to hubby… They are trained to line up and stick their tongues out on cue and ‘accept’ their treats. The one , I am sure is boarder line diabetic… she LOVES peppermint and brownies.
And the chicks always make me want to go to another Mike The Headless Chicken Festival! Mike is a true story about a chicken that didn’t die after they tried to butcher it!! No kidding!! he went on to perform at Coney Island, the Santa Monica Pier and more.. it’s really an interesting story. Click the link and read all about it.
The festival is great fun too. They have “Mike parade” where you and your pets have to dress up as “mike’, fried chicked and all manner of strange fun! The kids still regale their friends with tales about it.
I have decided to join the Sew For Victory challenge. I stumbled onto to the Lucky Lucille blog. And that’s how I found out about the challenge.
The goal is to sew an outfit from the 1940’s.
I think…NO…I KNOW I can!! My Grammy Helen was an accomplished seamstress and taught me many tricks. Grammy sewed for San Francisco’s upper crust. Many of my outfits in the 70’s were made with scraps from these ladies. 😉
In fact, I sew on my other Grammy’s 1960 Kenmore !!
Though I will say I was NEVER a fan of polyester!
My Grammy learned to sew very, very young. And later as a war bride, she learned to make do with whatever was at hand. Including flour sacks.
It’s interesting that off and on over the years I have used the skills I didn’t really realize I had, to earn a living!
So in memory of her, I am doing the Sew for Victory Challenge. I have not quite decided on a pattern yet, though I have an idea of what I want. The 1940’s were a great time for ladies fashions. Very flattering and feminine.
Keep an eye out for updates on my outfit!
We are building a new house this spring. WE.. as in WE are doing ALL the finish work. We had the shell and rough plumbing contracted.
Have you ever done anything important TOGETHER??? It is challenging.
Todays challenge was we had to take down several trees so the house could go up. Two were dead. Two were my favorite little apple trees. 40 year old apple trees!
Beautiful, droopy, cozy little apple trees.
I was OK with the first three. But I totally turned Tree Hugger on the last one!
We had hubby’s dad come over and run the chain saw. Hubby wasn’t ready to trust me with either the tractor (with the cable) or the chainsaw.
I personally think it was because we live in old school “Man’s Country” and some things are simply “Men’s Work”.
I can hear that old jingle from George of the Jungle… “George. George… George of the Jungle…watch out for that treeeeeeeeeeeee”
Once upon a time in a far off land… Ok, more like a in a little town nobody has ever heard of..
We won the BEST BUSINESS award for Washington County. I almost wasn’t ALLOWED to accept it.
This little café was smack in the center of town. A tiny town. 96 people. A town where time stood still. Literally. The home of the ‘old boys club’. A staunch old school German community. 130 miles from Denver and another 60 or so to St. Francis, KS. ~If you wanted food, you were getting it here. ~
We worked our rumps off to make this place a success. We had regular customers that would drive 50 miles just for our fried chicken! We tons of truck traffic and catered far and wide. Tony had been a well known chef in Denver before we made the move. I worked extra hours so we’d have the money to employ the teenagers an moms that came looking for work. We had a wonderful friend, also an award-winning chef from California come join us, as well as the Mom-in-law.
In our neck of the woods, there were many organizations one could join. However… MEN were the end all-be all of the area. If a woman showed up for say, an economic development meeting, it was “Understood” that it was by Proxy as a stand in for her husband. And that everything would be rehashed with HIM the following morning over coffee.
We were awarded Best Business of the Year by Washington County. This was for our efforts to attract business and for being the main employer after the rural school. (The elevator had shut down)
So, we dress up. And we go. Dinner was good. The company was interesting. I think many of them were a little uncomfortable. It was mostly men, all patting themselves on the back.
They announce the award. I stand up. Shannon is clapping wildly. And…… SILENCE. Utter and complete silence. The very nice fellow looks around asks when is your Husband going to get here? I said that he was unable to attend. And he said that if They Had Known , they would have waited until another date.
I popped a cork. And let the Old Boys Club know in no uncertain terms what I thought about that.
I got the award.
Just goes to show… sometimes you have to blaze new trails!