Welcome To Pilgrims and Pioneers!

After many years of researching my family geneaology I have been lucky enough to discover actual information about my relatives that lived in the Pilgrim Era and the Pioneer Era- while many people also have realtives from those eras- many do not know their names or where they lived- actually seeing the proof in print makes you much more aware of who they really were.
After discovering these relatives it of course made me curious to learn more about the eras that they lived in and what their lives were like as, the history I learned in grade school had long since been forgotten.
I decided to start this blog for others who are also interested in these eras.
Some of the information here will be actual facts about my realtives and some will be information about the eras in general that I have found on the web.
I hope you will enjoy traveling back in time with me!

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Sally Goodin

Sally Goodin is an old folk song with good old fiddle music- open your windows and doors- kick off your shoes and turn up the volume- and dance ,dance, dance!! it will lift your spirits!http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ByYSkRGrMqw

Homemade" Frosty Paws"

I have been making these for about a year now for my dogs- they love them! Even before I freeze them!
1 32 oz container vanilla yogurt
1 large jar of banana baby food
2 Tbsp. peanut butter
2 Tbsp. honey
Mix together well- I use a wire whisk.
Spoon into 3oz paper Dixie cups and freeze.
After they are frozen I wrap them in Saran wrap and close with twist ties.
To serve invert into a small bowl and let sit until the "frosty paw" will slide out of the cup or peel the cup away. I cut these up into smaller pieces before giving them to my dogs.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

The bears have been shipped!

And are on their way to Canada- way far North Canada! All 52 of them!
It was a very busy 5 days dipping that many bears but, what a sense of accomplishment I feel now! It is good to push yourself sometimes! I have a very happy customer right now!! Which of course makes me very happy too!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Homemade Fabric Softener

Another going"green" recipe! Homemade fabric softener.
Add 1 cup white vinegar or 1/2 cup baking soda to your rinse water. If you want scent add 10 drops of your favorite essential oil to a clean rag and toss in your dryer near the end of the drying cycle.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Clean & Green

In my quest to live a more "Green" lifestyle I have been reasearching ways to use less chemicals. here is a few tips I have found.
Homemade Soft Scrub
1/2 cup baking soda
2 tbsp liquid soap-( castille would be good)
mix together well and start scrubbing!

Drain Opener
Pour 1/2 cup of baking Soda down drain- follow with 1 cup vinegar.
Let bubble for 15 min. Pour very hot or boiling water down the drain.
I have not used either of these yet- but no chemicals are used- and that's a good thing!

Bears! Bears! Bears!

A few days ago I received a large order for the scented wax bears that I sell. 50 Bears! 25 large and 25 small! I have 30 finished and 20 more to go! I have never had such a large order and feel very blessed to have received this one! I am getting a good soy wax treatment to my hands too! LOL! Doin' the happy Dance!!!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

It's A Crock!

As many of you may know my Mom passed away last December at the age of 86.

Living through the depression she had always live very frugally so there fore did not have much when she died- the one thing that she did have was a 5?gallon crock in mint condition. It was made by Western Stoneware- about 80 miles from where I live.

I am proud to have it in my home- a great momento of my Mom!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Single Soy Melters

After many requests for single tarts I have added them to my website. They are available in the regular fluted style and the 2 oz Simpler Thymes ( my little prim prairie cakes). This a great way to try new scents.

Dried Apple Head Dolls

Pioneer woman made their own dolls for their children - many times with dried apples for heads. The results is a wrinkly face with an elderly look- no two come out alike. That is what makes it fun!Here are some basic directions:

The supplies you will need are: 1 cup lemon juice

1 tbsp. salt


I have heard that Golden Delicious apples are good to use because they are large and have a nice color inside- but any apple can be used. The largrer the apple of course the larger the head.

Peel the apple and soak in the lemon juice salt mixture for 45 min. You need to saok each apple you use so if you are doing several you may want to double this mixture. If you want your apple a darker color do not soak just dry it.
After soaking the apple use a small knife you will have good control over- or a small baby spoon- to carve out eye sockets and areas for cheeks so that you form a nose- a mouth and ears can also be carved out. Do not cut actual slits in the apple as this may cause it to start rotting.
You can use whole cloves for eyes and individual rice grains for teeth- depending on the look you want- features can be painted onse the apple head is thoroughly dry.
Once you have the face the way you want it you need to dry the head.
This can be done several ways. To air dry carefully run a large straightened paper clip or piece of heavy wire through the center of the apple- put a bend in the bottom of the wire to hold the apple on and make a loop in the top for hanging. Hang it to dry in a place where it will not get direct sunlight. It will take 2-3 weeks to dry.
The apples can also be dried on a tray or a screen but you can not handle the apples while they are drying.
You can also dry in a food dehydrator set at 135 degrees or less- you must check them frequently. You can also place them in a 200 degree oven with the door slightly ajar- leave them in for 4-5 hours and then finish drying them on a screen.
The doll body can be a purchased one or made from a dowel or heavy wire for the body attaching purchased arm and legs. A styrofoam cone can also be used for a standing doll with a full dress. Clothing can be as plain or as fancy as you wan to make it. Adapting a clothing pattern to the size you need should work well.
Another idea is to make several heads to use on a wreath for Halloween decorating or place several heads in a wood bowl( use the cloves and rice for the facial features like the photo shows)

for a "spooky" table decoration!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Enjoy the day!

It is going to be a wonderful weather day here today! Unfortunately I have to work. If you don't I hope you can enjoy this wonderful day!
If I were home I think I would start a meal in the crockpot and get outside to enjoy all the wonderful things God has created there. Perhaps work in your yard, plant some flowers if it is warm enough where you are, take a ride in the country, or got to a park.
After enjoying your easy crockpot meal try some aroma threapy- Light a candle, or melt some tarts in a spring scent or any scent you find refreshing and relaxing.
Fill up your tub and relax/refresh in some scented bath salts and then pamper & nourish your skin with some scented soy body lotion.
There are some great candles, tarts,and lotions on my website.

Easy Bath Salts Recipe:
1 cup Epsom salts
3 tablespoon Baking Soda
5 drops of essential oil
0r 7-8 drops of frgrance oil
A FEW more drops of either oils can be added if you prefer.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Grandma Temple- A "Gibson Girl"

My grandmother was a descendent of both Pilgrim's and Pioneer's but as this picture shows she grew up in the "Gibson Girl" Era. It looks like a rolled up diploma on the table next to her so I assume that this is her high school graduation picture.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

The Civil War Era- Haversacks, Housewives, and Poke Sacks

During the Civil War a soldier needed to carry some basic survival items with him at all times.

Different bags were used in carrying these items.

A Haversack was a bag that was used to hold eating utensils- a tin plate, a tin cup, a fork. It was also used to hold food rations - slab bacon or salt pork, coffe beans, rice, dry beans, a deck of cards, etc.. The salt pork or slab bacon were many times wrapped in brown paper to help prevent the grease from getting on the other items.

A "housewife" was a bag kept inside the haversack. The "housewife" was a sewing kit that contained scraps of fabric, brass pins, needles, thread wrapped on a piece of canvas, bone buttons, paper backed tin buttons, a small pair of scissors, and sometimes some matches and a candle.

Poke sacks were smaller bags commonly made of muslin or ticking. These sacks were used to hold some of the items that were placed in the haversack and a haversack would contain may poke sacks as items needed to be seperated Some things placed in the poke sacks were: tobacco, rice, beans, coffee beans, hardtack biscuits, a bar of soap, a toothbrush.
* note- In the Civile War Era toothbrushes were made with wood handles and natural bristles- combs were also made from wood.
I would definitely say this was primitive living!

Monday, April 14, 2008

I am so honored!

I have recieved a blog exellence award from Patty at http://tailsfromthedogpatch.blogspot.com/

Thank you so much Patty! Patty and I share a mutual love of dogs and she is doing a great thing by supporting "Dogs Deserve Better".

I am to pass this on to five other people that have excellent blogs.

There are so many great blogs I could do more than 5 but in keeping with the guidelines of this award 5 blogs it is!

The 5 I have chosen are :

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Being frugal like our ancestors

Many years ago our Pilgrim & Pioneer ancestors led a much more frugal and "greener" lifestyle than we do today. Of course this was due to the fact that they did not have any choice- there were no chemicals back then or electricity that we so treasure for our modern conveniences.
That being said I do not want to go without electricity or many of today's modern conveniences but I do want to find a way to be more frugal and save money and also to help preserve our planet from all the harsh chemicals we use today and the amount of waste that is filling up our landfills.
I have a few tips on how to save some money and be a "greener person"- I am sure there are many more and if you have some not listed here feel free to post yours in the comments for others to take advantage of.
1. Keep your vehicle well maintained and your tires properly inflated to save on gas.
2.If buying small purchases at the grocery store try using a fabric shopping bag- if you can sew you can make your own- using fabric bags helps cut down on the amount of plastic we use.
3. Make your own glass cleaner from a mixture that is 1/2 white vinegar and 1/2 water.
4.If you have an expensive item that is not working properly- check to see if having it repaired is cheaper than buying new.
5. Shop local farmer's markets when you can- food is fresher and often grown without the use of chemicals.
6. Recycle and repurpose- when an item is no longer useful for it's original purpose try to think of ways you can recycle it.
7. Pack lunches instead of buying them- this not only saves money it is better for you.
8. Try using generic products instead of brand name- some are just as good if not better.

You Make My Day Award

The you make my day award I received from Cathy of http://www.hazelruthsblogspot.com/
Thank You Cathy!
The rules for "You Make My Day Award" are to present it to those whose blogs bring you happiness and inspiration and make you feel happy about blogland.
Let them know by email or posting a comment on their blog so they can pass the award on.
I pass the You make My Day Award to:

Saturday, April 12, 2008

My Hubby's Shaker Style Sampler

I can't believe I was standing so crooked when I took this picture- but I think you can still tell what it looks like.

For several years my husband & both did counted cross stitch- he had more patience than I did and completed bigger projects. He went through a phase where he stitched many samplers.

Since I have become so fascinated with the Pilgrim & Pioneer Eras this has become my favorite!
"Put your hands to work and give your hearts to God".

Shoofly Pie

I have heard about Shoofly Pie ever since I can rememeber but never really knew what was in it- so I did some research and found a recipe for those of you who did not know like me.

If you actually make one please let me know!

Shoofly Pie

1 unbaked 9" pie crust

Crumb Topping

1 cup flour

1/2 cup light brown sugar

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. nutmeg

1/3 cup butter

Liquid Bottom

1 cup boiling water

1/2 cup light molasses

1/2 cup dark corn syrup

1 tsp. baking soda

1 egg beaten

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Mix the crumb topping together until you get fine crumbs. Set aside.

Mix molasses and corn syrup and add boiling water- mix well. Add baking soda and beaten egg and mix well again. Spoon mixture into the unbaked pie shell, spoon the crumb topping onto the top of the pie. Place the pie on a baking sheet covered with aluminum foil and bake for 40 minutes or until pie is medium set and dark brown. Can be served warm or cold and topped with whip cream.

This is a traditional Pennsylvania Dutch dessert. The ingredients are ones that were long lasting on the long ocean journey the German immigrants made to America.

Legend has it that the unusual name for this pie came from the fact that pies were sat in windowsills to cool and due to the sweet ingredients the cooks would have to constantly shoo flies away from the pie.

Grandma Temple & Aunt Nellie

Taken in 1900 this is a photo of my Grandma and her sister Nellie- grandma is the smaller child in the photo.

Nellie does not look too happy about having her picture taken!!
Actually neither one of them do!
Take note of the shoes!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Meet Molly!

Molly is our 2 year old Basset Hound ( soon to be 3!). She is a small Basset and a very lively one!

I took her in when she was about 4 months old as she belonged to my son and he had lost his job and could not afford to keep her. I already had two other dogs so I figured what is one more!

I really was not ready for a puppy but she has turned into my baby and I love her so much! And hubby does too!
This is Molly on her first birthday!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Sarah Jones Dow> Zilla Dow Shere> Temple Shere Pierceson

Following down my genealogy path I have posted about my great grandmothers from several generations past- Hannah Bumpass- Eunice Bump- Mourning Lewis- Anne Dickerson- Sarah Ellen Jones Dow.

This post will be about my paternal grandmother Temple Musset Shere who descended from this long line of Pilgrim and Pioneer women.

She was born in 1897 in Yorktown, Illinois- a tiny settlement that was cofounded by her great grandfather Whitcher Dow along with her grandfather Benjamin Franklin Dow and the McKenzie family.

Her mother was Zilla Dow and her father was Will Shere. Will Shere had been married before to a woman named Charity Wilsey and had 4 children with her. Charity died of consumption in Yorktown and later Will Shere remarried Zilla Dow and to them were born two children- my grandmother Temple and her brother Harry Boyd Shere. This created a fairly large family and my grandmother was just a few years old when her oldest half brother Clarence emigrated to Drinkwater, Saskatchewan, Canada with his family.

My grand mother married Arthur Pierceson- a man of direct Swedish descent( his parents having come from Kristianstad, Sweden in 1881).

She and my grand father Arthur had one child- my dad Glenn Pierceson.

Arthur passed away when my father was just 3 years old. Four years later my grand mother married Arthur's brother John and with him had three more children- 2 boys and a girl.

The girl being Janice- my aunt whose garden is pictured in a previous post.

My grandma Temple passed away in 1957 when I was 4 years old - she died from injuries sustained in an auto accident. She was 60 year old.

I do not remember much about her- just the fact that she was very tall and oh so kind.

So it was with awe and amazement when my Aunt janice started sharing photos with me that I saw my grandmother was once a young woman also- she had not always been my Grandma- something I think we all forget!

My grandma true to her Pilgrim & Pioneer roots quilted, needlepunched, embroidered, and wove her own rugs- in fact her rug loom sits in my Aunt Janice's garage and is used to weave rugs by her and her daughter Suzie- they too are carrying on our Pilgrim & Pioneer heritage!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Simmering Potpourri Recipe

Here is a very simple way to scent your home. In Pilgrim and Pioneer days there were no Glade scent products or aerosol sprays so they had to use what was available.
Orange Cinnamon Clove Simmering Potpourri
Add orange peels, cinnamon sticks, and whole Cloves to a pot of boiling water, reduce heat and, and simmer gently on your stove.
Make sure to set your kitchen timer for 30 min. at a time so you can check the water level in your pot. Add water as necessary.
Your potpourri mixture can be saved and stored in your refigerator for up to one week.
Always make sure you potpourri is turned off before leaving your home.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

Our Prairie Prim Tarts

These tarts are our latest venture at having a more old fashioned "Prairie" look to our products. They are from our Simpler Thymes line.

The tarts are big 2 oz tarts and look like little prim Prairie cakes.

They are made from our richly scented, creamy pure soy wax,- no blends or additives in our soy! Depending on the size of your warmer you may only need 1/2 of these tarts at a time.

For more info go to the Melters section - http://www.brandyannescandlesandprims.com/

Friday, April 4, 2008

Take Time to Smell the Roses

I know that we have all heard this saying but as I research life back in time I realize how important it is to do this. It seems the more automated our society becomes the less time we have. With all the automation we have I think we feel even more pressured to accomplish more and more every day.
I like most of you lead a very hectic life- sometimes to the point I really don't even have time to do what is most important- appreciate my loved ones and my surroundings. Sometimes I am on the go until it is time to fall into bed being unaware of the little things in life that make life so enjoyable.
In the pioneer days life was full of hard work and the days were long- but without all the fancy bells and whistles that we have today life was simpler and the little things were more appreciated. When was the last time you waited in anticipation for the new fabric for the new dress you were wanting make finally came in? We just go to Wal Mart and come home with new fabric!
Here are some tips to help all of us destress our lives and hopefully apppreciate the little thing in life.
1) Make time to take a walk and enjoy your surroundings- now that Spring is here this is the perfect time- the are many flowers that will soon be in bloom.
2) Make time every day to allow yourself a break- sit down with a cup of herbal tea if you like it and try to let your mind go blank. Or sit down , close your eyes and visualize your self in the tropics. A short 15 minute break will help revitalize you.
3) Make time to read- try reading just a few pages when you go to bed at night- it may help you fall asleep more easily.
4) Put a bird feeder in your yard or on your patio- it is very relaxing to watch birds coming to feed even if it is only for a few minutes.
5) If your schedule does not permit any time for youself until late at night- try burning a candle or melting some tarts in a scent that you enjoy or that comforts you. Set your kitchen timer in case you fall asleep! Burning the house down would not be relaxing.
6) Relax in an herbal bath to refresh your spirit and relax your mind. Herbal milk baths are a great way to realx and soften your skin at the same time. Or soak in a bath with Herbal Bath Tea- see our Archives for a bath tea recipe.
And most of all- Take time to smell the Roses!

Prairie Wild Morning Glory

Prairie  Wild Morning Glory

Prairie Phlox

Prairie Phlox

Prairie Sundrops

Prairie Sundrops

The Famous Rock!

The Famous Rock!
Plymouth Rock dated 1620

Plimoth Plantation

Plimoth Plantation
The Village

Plimoth Plantation

Plimoth Plantation
A Keeping Room