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Quick Tips 107: Things you can't go without knowing

Here's another installment of the Quick Tip 101-(Volume 7) 
These are a few tips from the past month that I feel could help you, too.

1.  Use a galvanized bucket to hold your garden hose and water sprinklers.

This is the setup at my house and I will tell you, it's really handy when we need to grab something quick, or to move the hose in a hurry. We just wrap it around the bucket and it's good to go.

2.  Placing the dustpan in the corner.

The Hiatt House has Pergo Flooring in it. Although it's better than carpet, it still isn't something I am thrilled about, but that aside, sweeping it or vacuuming it is something I do every day. When there isn't anyone around the hold the dustpan well, I am either bending over holding the broom, or coming up with a new strategy. I devised a way to actually hold the dustpan without actually holding the dustpan. Place it in the corner and the job is done.

3.  Use ginger tea in your bath water.

I buy ginger tea for two reasons. One, to drink, of course and the other, to use in my bath water. Ginger has been known to help flush the body of toxins and to aid in digestion. You can make up a cup of tea and throw the used bag into your bath water. Drink the tea while you enjoy the benefits of the ginger in your bath.

4.  Using a doggie piddle pad as a dish drainer water mat.

This is our old dish drainer, we have a bamboo one now, but for both of them I used Dog Pottie Pads to catch the excess water. They work in a pinch when all of the dish towels are in the wash.

5. Using pencils to balance paint bottles.

I do a lot of random painting, especially for my Etsy Shops. I have many bottles that have just a bit of paint in the bottom and I couldn't figure out a way to get the last little bit out without standing and holding the bottle. Bring in the good ole' number 2 pencil. Balancing the bottle upside down with pencils on either side was a really great idea. I am actually proud of this tip because I figured it out by accident. I will spare you the boring story, but it has helped bring out the last drip in my paint and glue bottles.

Hope these tips help you and make your life just a bit easier.

Road Trip: Crater Lake National Park

Our road trips sometimes take us all over the state of Oregon, but one place we haven't had the chance to visit is Crater Lake National Park; Until now. Back in April we took an overnight trip down to southern Oregon and visited Crater Lake during National Park Week. National Park Week, April 16 to 24, 2016, is a yearly "holiday" to encourage visitors to get out and see their national parks and enjoy what the United States offers to the public in forms of preservation of important places and history. With that, we took advantage of the week and made the drive down south.
We stopped at a rest area close to Seven Feathers Casino owned by the Cow Creek Indians and all across the rest area are signs talking about the history of the Indian tribe that once inhabited the area. Of course, with my American Indian heritage, I always find information on American Indians throughout Oregon interesting. It's amazing to me that the Indians throughout the state depended a lot on the salmon and other game near the rivers a big part of their diets. Unlike the American Indians near Oklahoma and Arkansas that depended on land game such as bison and bears.

The highway department will be in for a bit of work if this hillside ever gives away. I snapped this while we were driving.

When I snapped this picture we were still about an hour and a half from the cabin. The sunset looked beautiful as we were headed south. It made me long for a trip to California.

Since we took off so late in the day we decided to stay the night close to Crater Lake and enjoy the view bright and early the following morning. We found the cutest cabins to stay in and booked it before we left. We found Union Creek Resort nestled along Highway 62 and it was a perfect setting of rustic and tiny homes packed into one area. The Mr. and I fell in love with it right away. It was close to midnight when we arrived and freezing cold inside the cabin. The manager had turned on the heat, but it hadn't been on long enough to heat up the entire cabin before we arrived. Once we got under all of the covers and blankets, we were so tired from the drive that the cold didn't even affect us. It's been known that you sleep better when it's cold anyway.

It was a two bed cabin with a small bathroom/shower and mini fridge, microwave and log furniture. It was so charming. The Mr. and I have looked into tiny homes and we loved staying in this small cabin. It gave us some great ideas for our future tiny home ideas.


Every cabin there was a bit different from the one beside it. They all had just a little change either to the outside, or the inside.

The view of our cabin (#9) from the Country Store and Gift Shop.

The Bean loved playing with the vintage phone booth in front of the Country Store.

We ate breakfast at the restaurant across the highway from the resort. The restaurant was named "Beckie's" and the food they serve reminded us a lot of my mom's cafe. Crystal Springs Mercantile in Arkansas


After breakfast we headed toward Crater Lake. The snow was on the ground everywhere and with the sun out made the area look so beautiful!

The snow was so deep in some areas, but the roads were dry and clear. It was so strange to me that it was 58 degrees, yet there was at least eight-feet of snow in some areas around us. 

Some of the buildings around the park were cleared away from the snow plows and people shoveling away from the doors.

A view of the side of Crater Lake. I shot this from the car as we were in line to park..

The snow was so deep against some of the buildings that only a few doors were dug out so visitors could go inside.

We lifted the snow doors inside the visitors' center just to see how much the snow was built up on the side of the building. We don't get this kind of snow in Arkansas, that's for sure, so it always fascinates me to see so much at one time.


The Bean had fallen back against the snow and made an imprint of his body. It almost looked as if the imprint was reaching out to play.

Crater Lake isn't actually a lake at all. It was formed during the self-destruction of a volcano-Mount Mazama-that happened to implode on itself and create the crater on top. Over time water collected by way of rain and created what we know today as Crater Lake. It was discovered by William Steel after reading an article about it in a newspaper that was wrapped around his sandwich. He commissioned congress to make Crater Lake a National Park

A model of Crater Lake.....

The real view of Crater Lake.

The water inside Crater Lake is the purest water in the world. It comes from rain and snow melt. Nothing else supplies the water into Crater Lake. Because of that, it is the purest water you'll ever find.  

My Boys.

The small island inside Crater Lake is a small cinder cone that developed after the original eruption ended. See the reflection of the island? So clear! FYI: The small island is known as "Wizard Island."

I still can't believe how clear these photos were when they were on my camera roll. Adding them to the blog took me several hours because of me stopping and looking at them again and again. It was so bright and blue that day we didn't want to leave. Such a beautiful place to see in person.

View of Mount Mcloughlin

The Bean, just like his mom, loves the snow. I snapped this picture at just the right time. The snow almost looks like a "cloud" as it fell to the ground.

The bag of chips The Mr. took with us in our packed lunch expanded under the elevation changes and pressure. We went ahead and opened them so they wouldn't explode on us. It was a great lesson for The Bean, too!


On our way back we decided to drive down I-5 and go into California. Along Highway 62 near the Rogue River we came across this quaint country store named Sunset on the Rogue Country Store. It was a small shop that offered gas, rafts for rafting the river, and other trinkets. It even had an old outhouse in the back. 

If you follow my blog you'll remember this motel making the Five simple things. It is located along Highway 62.

Next to the motel is the Rogue Elk Cafe. It has since closed, but according to a local, all of these places had their glory days back in the 50s and 60s. (They are both for sale)

Along Highway 62 we got a great view of Mount Mcloughlin.

Can you imagine that mountain being in your backyard? I wonder if those people appreciate what they see every day.

Baz loves our road trips.

Mount Shasta had a great view at the border, too.

It was a great road trip and overnight stay at Crater Lake. There's one National Park in Oregon down; Two more to go!