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Friday, May 22, 2015

Don't Get Burned - Vitamin D Cures The Burn

This may be the only life-altering blog I write,
so don't miss this one, or you're going to get burned!
Well, let's admit it, you've already been burned
multiple times in your life, but I have the cure!

Welcome to official summer with Memorial Day!
Along with summer comes sunburns - boating,
pools, picnics, walks, you name it and those sunburns
can burn all night long and into the next day.
But the sun isn't the only thing that burns.
How many ways can you get burned,
let me count the ways:
Curling irons
Pots and pans
Glue guns - ouch! ....

You know, you've had it all, right?

Let me take you back to my college days
(and since I am going to my 40th high school
reunion this year, that was a few years ago.)

College was done for the year and we were going
to take a road trip to California before we returned
to Wisconsin.  We were heading to the beach!  For
a girl who grew up in Wisconsin with sandy beaches
at all of our lakes, but had never been to the coast,
this was quite a thrill.  We were going to stay with
our friend Paul, at his parent's house.  

Of course, snow white college students mixed with
bronzing California sun can end up being a disaster
but each day after the beach, Paul had us slather on
liquid Vitamin D.  His grandfather had worked at a
dairy and someone had been severely burned there.
While waiting for help, one of the workers had poured
liquid Vitamin D on the burn and by the time help
had arrived, the burn no longer hurt.  Seems too good
to be true, right?

Well, we did it and within 30 minutes it took away
the burn.  Of course, we were dumb college kids,
and even though we were snow white, we were
staying at the beach all day.  Then one day we
drove down to San Diego and forgot to bring
the Vitamin D.  By the time we applied it that
night, it didn't have any effect, so we realized it
had to be applied soon after coming inside.

Fast forward a little - when I had no access to Vitamin D
but sure wished I had as I had sleepless nights because
of too much sun.

My brain finally wondered if there was enough Vitamin D
in milk (that's why the dairy had it in the first place) and
I decided to try slathering milk on a sunburn as soon 
as I came in from the sun.  Amazingly enough it took the
burn away in 15-30 minutes, but I smelled like sour milk.
Well, just a little good smelling lotion applied over the
milk application, after the milk had dried and the smelly
cow was taken care of.

This was a miracle and I was going to share it with everyone,
especially as we spend a lot of time in the sun at Lake Powell
or Cabo.

Many scoffed, but those who tried it became believers.

Too many waited until night time when they were in severe
pain to give it a try, and as I had told them, it had to be as
soon as they came in, for some reason, and they had to suffer
the consequences of not listening to me.

(Here she is when she was young.  Now she is grown and married.)

Fast forward, once again, to my fourth child who was about 5,
and who crawled up on the counter and placed her
hand on a sealed disc burner which was still hot
and it removed the entire skin of her palm.  

We immediately plunged her hand in milk and kept
adding ice cubes and fresh milk for several hours.  She
slept peacefully that night and we forgot about the burn
the next day because she wasn't in any pain.

Two days later, we were at a picnic and I showed it
to a Dr. there, and her hand was beautifully healed, no

Yes, there is enough Vitamin D in milk, and I have tried
it all from skim to whole and even baby formula and 
found relief.  A little milk on a paper towel held on
a blistered finger for half an hour and you won't suffer
all night with the burn. (Somewhere in those years I 
read in a women's magazine about a university study
using milk for burns and they thought it was the 
proteins in the milk and they stated it had to be
whole milk.  Wish I had saved that article and written
to them!)

But the great news is that you can now buy Vitamin D
in capsules, so you don't have to risk the smell of sour
milk.  Just pierce a capsule, squeeze it into your palm
and apply it.  If you are applying it to a large area,
mix it in your palm with some lotion!  I now carry
Vitamin D. capsules in my purse.

Let me tell you about my worst burn lately and how I
took away the burn.

This is a picture of this awful burn.  We had driven to our
cabin which is 20 minutes away and reaching into my husband's
car, an Audi Q7, to take out some food, my leg touched the
exposed tail pipe - just one more reason to not like his Audi Q7!
But that is another story!

Instantly I had a circle of blistered skin and I can't remember such
pain.  Screaming and holding my knee I searched my mind for
a way to get relief.  I had hubby run into the cabin, knowing 
full well that we had no milk there, but hoping someone may have
left some, and he came out with some vanilla ice cream. 
 Hey, I didn't have any Vitamin D
capsules since I had left my purse at home,
 and I was desperate to try anything.  With a paper towel, I
applied some vanilla ice cream and held it there for about 15 minutes.
Within half an hour I was active again, and had totally forgotten
the pain.

When I told several of these experiences to my pharmacist
friend, she said I needed to share this information with
burn units.  She was interested in the sunburn, but fascinated
with the other burns.  I never have done that, but I thought
I would share it with you for summer.  

It really is miraculous, so don't get burned this summer
without having Vitamin D on hand in some form or other.

This isn't like Aloe Vera or ice, this actually takes the heat out
in just minutes.  Give it a try as I know you are going to get
burned in one way or another soon.  But don't put it off - do
it the minute you come in from the sun.  I don't know why,
but it doesn't work if you wait until the evening when you
really start hurting.

(I just got burned last week doing crafts with a hot glue
gun!  A little milk on a paper towel and despite it instantly
blistering, within an hour the pain was gone.)

I am going to share this secret with
Metamorphosis Monday

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

An Anniversary Beach Picnic

We are celebrating our 36th wedding anniversary
in Cabo and took a little picnic down to the
beach for sunset and a beach picnic tablescape.

And today I am celebrating my 5th Blogiversary!
How exciting to be celebrating in two ways.

 The crash of the waves on the beach is so 
beautiful and the setting sun creates such
soft light.  It was the perfect spot to set up a casual
tablescape to celebrate both anniversaries.

Hubby was such a good sport to help drag
everything out onto the sand.  

The serape with its brilliant stripes and rich
blues is what we spread to relax on and it
sets the mood for a Mexican bright picnic
on the soft sand.

White and blue dishes and napkins add an elegant softness
to the brightness of the serape. 

The plates layer the white and blue and
the napkins do too.

This classic Mexican wood and leather
stool seemed the perfect focal point
for our beach setting.  This gives a rich
contrast to the brights.

And of course a few shells are needed to
create our beachy mood.

It was so nice to leave the cold and
rain at home and be able to relax
in the sun and surf.  Big, bright pillows
and a paper umbrella make the picnic
spot more comfortable.

The cushions are perfect for relaxing against
as we take in the calming effect of the waves.

 Here's a shot of the placesetting.

We only have one set of flatware
here, and the flatware is something
someone else bought, but it works!

We grabbed a few fresh flowers on
the way to the beach.

A silk orchid plant also brings some of the
brilliant pinks from the serape into the tablescape.

A little sparkling apple juice was
poured as the sun started to set.

You can see the shadows drawing out
down the sand.

There's only a little sun left on the beach
but it will stay light for quite a while
as we stay and relax.

More shells on my new serving platter.

I brought two of these down to Cabo from
Home Goods, but in removing the
stickers, I noticed these are not to be
used for food!  Too bad!  That was their
intended use.  Guess they are going to have
to be decorative!

I hope you can feel the peace we are 
experiencing this anniversary.  It is just the two of us.
I can't believe we have been married this long!
How nice to be able to get away and relax.

I also can't believe I have been blogging 
for 5 years.  Since I couldn't bring you all 
along, I am going to bring you home a gift
to celebrate 5 years of blogging.  I will have
a give away next week.  Come back to see
what surprise I am bringing back from Cabo
for one of you!

Time to stop the photography, grab a pillow,
lay down, and
drink the sparkling cider!

I am so glad you came to visit today and hoped
that you could almost hear the waves.

I will be posting this picnic with

(This one courtesy of hubby!)

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Our Future Is Now - Musings on Storage Space in a Trailer in 1948


(In working on my dad's life story, Joni told me to contact
my oldest brother to get my parents' love letters, and stories my mother
had written.  He had been injured on the landings at Normandy and was sent
stateside to an army hospital for surgery on his hand and arm.
She attended a dance/party for the servicemen and they met there.  
They married in July of 1945 and he wasn't released from the service until January
of 1946.  They moved from Utah back to Wisconsin where he was from.
Housing and jobs were in short 
supply after WWII, so they moved into a trailer that was placed
on his parent's farm in Wisconsin.  He couldn't find a job locally, so he worked out of town
 from Sunday evening to lateSaturday night for the first five years of their new marriage.  
They kept letters from when they were dating and those first five yeas of marriage.
She was an aspiring author when they were first married.  
 She used her time at night to write the short
stories and magazine articles,
and successfully published three or more short stories.  There is quite
a collection of stories that she wrote, that had been returned from publishers.
None of us had ever read any of this material before. 
 What a treasure to find!
 This is one of her short articles.)

(A picture of them on their couch in their "house trailer".)

When we purchased a house trailer, which was to be used as a stationary dwelling, we thought of it as makeshift at best, something of a substitute nature, and at first we lived in it temporarily.  We planned to stay in it until an apartment became available in our price range, or until building materials became more plentiful and less expensive.  But the apartments which were occupied, and priced within our means, remained occupied, and after awhile, the prices went beyond our means.  Building materials became plentiful, but the price tag placed upon them was exorbitant, and so what we had planned on living in for a few months “until fall”, became our home for an indefinite time.

We lived within the confinement of a home 24 feet long and 8 feet wide for quite some time before we became aware of the fact that we couldn’t continue to live there on a substitutional basis.  We must begin to accept it as the now, the present, and govern our actions accordingly.  It is a human fallacy to consider what today provides as only the circumstances of the present and to continually project oneself into the future as the time when living will actually take place, when this luxury or that foible will be an integral part of daily living. 

There are advantages and disadvantages in living in a trailer house.  The space is small, and therefore, it is not necessary to keep a very large area clean, but it is extremely important to maintain order, for without order, chaos soon develops.  In a trailer a housewife can not possibly walk the multitudinous miles often accredited to her in an ordinary day’s work in a kitchen.  Everything in the small kitchen is within arm’s reach.  One movement is all that is necessary to get from one side of the working space to the other.  The storage space, though not as plentiful as might be desired, is within convenient reach.  It is well to remember though, that one person working in the kitchen area is sufficient, in order to avoid much confusion and collision.  Probably the most important thing to learn about preparing food in so small a space is to use a minimum of dishes.  Otherwise, you become surrounded with the pots and pans you have just used and there is no place on which to put the ones you are about to press into service.

We were, at first, much inclined to put off having and enjoying many of the little luxuries available for the use of the American housewife.  When electric mixers became plentiful after the critical war years, I wanted one very much.  Where would we put it?  There was no tuck-away shelf on which to hide it, no convenient cabinet where it could be placed, nothing but the working counters and those were already well-occupied by the canister set on one side and on the side where the sink was placed, the cleaning materials, soap, floor wax, cleanser, etc., for which there was no other room, were stored.  Months went by during which we decided that we must wait, that a mixer actually did not belong in a trailer, that it would take up more room and be more of an inconvenience than an aid to efficient housekeeping.  But our self-arguments were to no avail and one day we purchased that handy appliance.

Now I could mix my cakes, using a minimum of effort and one bowl, to a feathery lightness.  Whipped potatoes could be served from the same bowl in which they were prepared.  Here was an appliance which worked wonders with egg whites, whipping cream, cooked frostings, and took so much of the tiring arm work out of so many jobs.  Also, there was an attachment which came with it, the juicer, which enabled me to extract juice from oranges speedily and with practically no effort.  Later, when they became available, a food grinder attachment was added to this equipment.  This is in use many times during the week, for grinding sandwich meat, for making a palatable and readily prepared hash from the left-over roast, potatoes and vegetables, and for grinding nuts, fruits, and many other foods to just the right texture, determined by the type of cutting blade used.  A cheap cut of meat can be ground easily and quickly to make patties which are delicious and oh-so-tender.

Where did we put this equipment?  By moving the canister set closer together it fitted nicely into the niche in the corner, and covered with an attractive plastic cover, became a part of the decoration scheme of the miniature kitchen.  The juicer attachment has a spot of its own in the shelf directly above the mixer and the grinder parts are also placed there, in a plastic bag, through which a drawstring has been run, thus avoiding misplacing the small pieces of the equipment.

I am a working wife and after inspecting the many and varied pressure pans on the market, I became quite convinced that meals could be prepared rapidly, with a minimum loss of food value, in such a pan.  Of course, since our living was temporary we could do without it and what if it did take longer to cook the potatoes when we were in a hurry?  But the months stretched out and the indefinite stay became quite definite and the pressure pan was ultimately purchased.  Only it was not a small pressure pan, but a small pressure cooker, a seven quart capacity.  We reasoned that such a size would do large cuts of meat nicely, a whole chicken, and what was more important, the cooker could be used to do a small amount of canning.  Now I cook large pots of chili, old-fashioned vegetable soup, or tenderize an old chicken, which later is browned to a delicious crispness, very handily in this utensil.  In the summer I do some canning, just a few jars of our favorite fruits and vegetables, not too important a part of our diet perhaps, but the main thing is that it is available if I so take the notion.

Where is this large cooker stored in our place of limited storage area?  There are two racks in the oven and these are arranged so that there is room for the cooker, its lid, two frying pans and covers to fit handily into it.  Of course, when the oven is to be used they have to be taken out and placed on the top of the range, or if that is in use, on a stool, and when the oven is turned off, they are returned to their storage space.

An electric toaster, once thought to be too cumbersome for our little home, now has its own space reserved beside the electric mixer.  It is covered with a matching plastic cover to blend with that of the mixer. 

The heat of cooking in itself is a problem in such a confined area, but we partially solved that by installing a ventilating fan in the window over the range.  This, too, was purchased after a long period of temporizing.  Still, it is necessary to open all windows and the door in order to allow the odors and heat of cooking to escape before eating, especially if we have guests.

Guests are as momentous a problem as any connected with this type of living.  Though our trailer is not one of the luxurious houses on wheels that one sees in the trailer sales lots today, it does have some ingenious features, one of which is the table.  It is a collapsible affair which folds up against the wall, the benches included.  When in place to be used there is room to seat four persons quite comfortably, but when the service for four is arrayed on the table, there is little room left for serving dishes.  Part of these are placed on a stool, and this suffices, though the arrangement is an awkward one.

Recently we purchased a folding chair to use at the long end of the table, and thus seat five people.  This also comes in handy when the table is in place against the wall and we have more guests than our davenport can accommodate.  When the chair is folded, it fits behind the davenport, against the wall and out of sight.

There are definite shortcomings in this way of life, most prominent among them would be the lack of storage space.  But we have found that if each article is kept in its own special nook, the difficulty is reduced to a minimum.  A good rule we have found is PICK IT UP – KEEP IT CLEAN.  This is more than a rule, it is a code to follow which becomes a prime necessity.  A scrap of paper on the floor, an unwashed coffee cup, a jacket draped over the davenport, stands out like a sore thumb.

We are learning important things in this way of living.  We are learning to conserve time, to make space count, and above all, to be neat and tidy.  When we at long last have our home, and be it small or roomy, it will seem infinitely capacious to us, we can apply this knowledge to good advantage.  We will try to remember to live each day to the utmost, in the present, the now, enjoying the goodness of the things which make life more bountiful; never dwelling upon that far off Utopia, the tomorrow when all things will be composed of perfection.  We will keep in mind that our sterling silver was as much at home when it graced the fold-down table in our trailer house as it will be in any other place we live.

Written by Nedra Littlefield Culp

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Garden Fairies Return

It is that time of year when the garden fairies
return!  They bring such fun to the garden and
add a touch of magic!  And it is all about the
magic here at Purple Chocolat Home.

This beautiful purple and green flower fairy
graces our tablescape today.  She is one
of my favorite fairies and was a gift from
a friends years ago.

A runner of green moss sets the mood
for the garden table, while the colors of
the fairy set the color scheme.

These rich purple stems match the
rich purple of the fairy.

Cabbage plates are always perfect for a 
garden themed table.

Beautiful flowered plates top the cabbage plates.

A matching, rich purple, glass plate is placed
atop the flowered plates and a small cabbage bowl
finishes the plate stack.

A purple and green color combination is
one of my favorites and that is echoed
in the napkins and beaded napkin rings.

I love the bee flatware on the mossy runner.

Everything in the garden is so green and
pretty and the trees offer a beautiful
back drop for this garden table.

This little French inspired flower pot
is one of my favorites and filled
with a silk flower, it adds a little
softness to the tablescape.

An artichoke garden sculpture adds some
height and presence to the centerpiece.

Yes, beautiful weather has arrived and the garden
is where we want to gather.  

 This fairy table will magically appear

Moss Runner - Hobby Lobby
Tablecloth - Handmade
Cabbage plates - Tuesday Morning
Purple Goblets - Speigel
Bee flatware - Horchow
Flowered plates - Home Goods
Napkin rings - Home Goods
Napkins - Home Goods
Artichoke garden piece - Home Goods
French pot - Tai Pan

Monday, May 11, 2015

King Crab Legs - How To

King crab legs are our favorite,
special meal, so of course, we served
them for Mother's Day.

For seafood lovers like us, these are the top of the
list, huge chunks of crab, that are sweet, and meaty.

I always have people asking me
how to cook them.  These are from
Costco's seafood special, so they come
frozen.  These are their largest, size 9/12.

Really, you are just reheating them,
but too little, and they are still cold,
too much, and they are dried out.

So the easiest answer is on a pan,
in a 400 degree oven for 20 minutes,
but that leaves the house smelling pretty

So here is one easy way to cook them,
and have a fresh smelling house when
company arrives.

Start by wrapping your big baking sheet
on the bottom with foil, so that you don't
end up with a black pan.  Mine is shiny
and new, and I definitely didn't want to
blacken it.  Place the crab legs on the
pan and place on a pre-heated grill.  I turned
on both burners to high.  Cover the grill and
let the legs heat for 20 minutes.  Check to see
if they are hot by touching the meat on the

Remove and serve while warm.

We like ours with melted butter, lemons and limes
and a wedge of sourdough bread.  I don't clarify
the butter.  I like the flavor of the butter solids.
We also don't cut the bread, everyone likes to
tear off pieces.

So the proper way to eat King Crab Legs
Purple Chocolat Home
1. Dip the crab in melted butter.
2.  Squeeze fresh lemon or lime on the crab.
3.  Place the crab on a piece of warm sourdough bread.
4.  Place the above morsel in your mouth and savor the
combinations of salty, sweet, and sour.

Now that is pretty easy and pretty delicious!

I will be posting this with


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