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~ Sandi and Ron K.

27 Aug '16

LifeHack #2247

Posted by Jules Happy Rone in Charles Viancin, LifeHack, Patio, Relaxing, Summer, Wine
Ever decide to take a drink out onto the patio or into the yard, only to regret it as you're fishing gnats out of your drink and fighting them for the last sip?
Yeah, me too.  It's annoying and frustrating and definitely NOT relaxing.
Now, I don't mean to sound like an infomercial again, but I have the solution to all of your problems!  ... or, at least all of the problems related to trying to take a drink outside.  ;)
These fantastic silicone drink covers by Charles Viancin really work.  They keep bugs/grass clippings/random dust/dirt and asteroids out, while helping to keep your drink insulated.  They're also pretty attractive.
One of my customers walked in recently and said, "You have saved my wine life. Thank you so much for turning me on to these drink covers!" Can I tell you how much I love hearing things like this?  And especially saving wine, because I might not cry over spilt milk, but wine is a completely different story!  
Go on, take a look and see.  I have a feeling you might want to give them a try too.  You don't have to thank me ... but you'll probably want to!  ;)
02 Aug '16

The making of a new display ...

Posted by Jules Happy Rone in Charles Viancin, New Display, New Goodies
Once upon a time ... there was a woman who bought a store.  When she first bought the store, she did all sorts of displays.  She once spent half a day collecting fall leaves, then ironing them to preserve them, before using them to decorate the store.  She would paint the windows and door (and spend even more time washing them when it was time to change.)  She was creative, and spent quite a while every couple months re-designing.  Time passed, and she got busier, and tireder, and a little less creative, seeing as she'd already used all of her best ideas.  ;)  
I think we all do the same thing to an extent, be it at home, at work, wherever, sometimes we just get tired.  And, while I like to think all my displays still look good, it's a little harder to get myself motivated to do them after 19 years.  Oops, I guess I should add: spoiler alert, the woman mentioned above?  That's me!
So, though I may be busier and tireder after 19 years, I still like to make the window display special when I can force myself to get creative.  lol  About a month ago I did a huge order of our fantastic Charles Viancin corks.  These little guys are bright and adorable and best of all, they work like a CHARM!  I started thinking about featuring them in the main window and how I wanted to do that.  
Getting my recycling ready to take to the recycling center - a major chore that I do a few times a year - I noticed all the different sizes and shapes of glass bottles.  Hmm ...  Taking them out of the recycling definitely cut down on that trip.  I have friends who own a dinner theater and scored a few more interesting looking bottles there.
My collection grew until my entry way (temporary storage) was looking like a frat house had moved in - and decided to give up beer.  But what to do with the bottles?  I kind of liked the different colors and textures, but the labels were in the way.  I thought about removing the labels but UGH, that did NOT sound like fun at all.  
Suddenly, a flash of inspiration!  What do I do with anything, be it furniture, picture frames, pots, jewelry holders or other assorted trinkets that need to look better?  Spray paint it!
I grabbed an extra bottle of spray paint and one of the smaller bottles, ran a quick test, and knew I was in business.  A trip to Wal-Mart for a few shades of blue (who doesn't love blue glass bottles?) and I was set.
Of course as soon as I finished the first coat it started raining on me.  Shockingly I'm not quite sweet enough to melt, and it actually looked really pretty on the bottles.  
It looked nice enough that I spent a few minutes trying to figure out how to replicate the look, and had a few ideas, but that was not really the point of this project, so once they dried and I touched up where needed, I packed them up and brought them to the store.
While I was in town getting spray paint (a town big enough is about 40 minutes away, so it's always a major shopping excursion) I wandered into Hobby Lobby and fell in lust with these great Sunflowers.  They were even on sale, so come to mama!
(Apparently Sunflowers are natural attractors of Van Gogh, who knew?)
For almost a week I've had a tub of bubble wrapped blue bottles and a pile of sunflowers just waiting for my shipment of corks to arrive and very graciously didn't grab the boxes from the very nice FedEx lady when they did!
Today I cleared out the front window sill:
Then started adding the blue bottles, the yellow sunflowers, the daisy bottle stoppers, and anything else that I thought looked nice.
Tah DAH!  Not bad for a tired old shopkeeper, huh?  :)
 I think I'll take a nap now.
03 Oct '15

Soup Saturday and a Hot Tip for Heating Leftovers!

Posted by Jules Happy Rone in Charles Viancin, Potholder, Rainy Day, Soup, SoupSaturday
Honeycomb Potholder by Charles Viancin at Jules Enchanting Gifts

This rainy dreary Saturday is a #SoupSaturday if I ever saw one. So, I thought I'd share a recipe for one of my favorite soups - Cheesy Potato - and also a hot tip for heating leftovers!  Hop on over to facebook so you can save this to your timeline or tag a friend!

The tip first - one of my customers turned me on to this and I think it's absolutely brilliant. We all know how fantastic the Charles Viancin Silicone Lids are for reheating things in the microwave. (And on the stove, and in the oven, and ...) What you probably didn't know is that if you put one of their Honeycomb Potholders (only $5.95) in the microwave under whatever you're heating up, it makes it super easy to transfer your hot container out of the microwave without burning yourself. (Hard to photograph, I needed another hand, but you get the idea!) Then you can also use it as a trivet on the table! Pretty sweet, right?

Now to the recipe. I have started calling this the Save Me Some Soup, as that's what my friends and relatives say to me when I mention making it. Honestly after the first time or two I kind of use the recipe as a suggestion, as I make a huge batch with a big bag of potatoes (red if I remember to get them, otherwise whatever I have in the house), a couple big onions, and then just pour the liquids until it looks about right. I haven't yet remembered to have scallions in the house when I make it, they're probably good on top. lol

Cheesy Potato Soup - via Cooking Light

I like to add: cooked chopped broccoli, salt, black pepper, garlic powder and dried parsley to taste.


1 tablespoon butter
1 cup chopped onion
2 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 cups chopped red potato (about 1 pound)
1 1/4 cups 1% low-fat milk
3/4 cup fat-free, lower-sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup (2 ounces) shredded reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
2 tablespoons chopped green onions

1. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onion to pan; sauté 5 minutes or until onion is tender. Sprinkle with flour; cook 1 minute, stirring onion mixture constantly. Add potato, milk, broth, and 1/2 cup water to pan; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 10 minutes. Add 1/2 cup reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese and ground red pepper; cook 2 minutes or until cheese melts, stirring frequently. Top each serving evenly with 1 1/2 teaspoons chopped green onions.

Yield: Serves 4 (serving size: 1 cup)
Total time: 30 Minutes

Nutritional Information (without the additions)
Calories 225 - Fat 6.9 g - Satfat 4.1 g - Monofat 1 g - Polyfat 0.2 g - Protein 9.9 g - Carbohydrate 32.7 g - Fiber 2.6 g - Cholesterol 21 mg - Iron 1.5 mg - Sodium 250 mg - Calcium 322 mg