Schlotzsky’s Type Sandwich

don’t take orders, make them and serve them, if someone doesn’t like the cucumbers, they can pull them out themselves~

This is a great sandwich. It looks complicated but is easy and fun to make. The bread recipe is the easiest of all yeast breads. You just need to go through the list of ingredients and have everything sliced, laid out and ready, then it goes together fast.  

these are 6 inch cast iron skillets, you can find them on the internet for under $10 each. They will last a lifetime~

Years ago, I bought a dozen 6″ cast iron skillets to bake these buns in and also for  my hamburger buns. I live 45 miles from the nearest real Schlotzsky’s place so this recipe works for me. It is a great meal even when you are having company. They will remember it~ 

these make a big sandwich, it is a full size meal~

you can cut them in quarters and serve as company snacks~

 Schlotzsky’s Buns  (copycat)
note: this is the easiest of all yeast breads to make!
1/2 c warm water
2 tsp sugar
2  1/4 tsp dry yeast (or one package)
1/4 tsp soda (dissolved in 2 tsp warm water)
3/4 c warm milk
1 tsp salt
2 1/2 c bread flour
2 T cornmeal
Stir together the warm water, sugar and yeast,
let sit for a few minutes.
In large bowl, combine dissolved soda, warm milk, salt
and one cup of the flour. Beat until smooth. Beat in the
yeast mixture and remaining flour, Batter will be sticky and
Prepare six little 6″ skillets by spraying with Pam, then sprinkle
bottoms with cornmeal. Divide dough  between pans, it
will spread during rising time. Spray tops with Pam
and let rise for one hour. Again spray tops with Pam,
bake in preheated 375 degree oven for 20 minutes.
Split buns with knife when cool.
You can use two cake pans if you don’t have the 6″ pans
and after making the sandwiches, cut them into thirds
for 6 sandwiches.
mozzarella cheese, grated
cheddar cheese, grated
parmesan cheese, good sprinkle of it
onion slices
tomatoes, sliced
cucumbers sliced thin
lettuce shredded
black olives, sliced in half
creamy garlic dressing, about like spreading mayonnaise on bun
salami  (it makes the sandwich~
2 slices of boiled or smoked ham for each sandwich
Assemble the sandwich~ 
1. spread garlic dressing on both halves of bun
2. sprinkle top bun with parmesan cheese
3. spread mustard and mozzarella on top bun
4. spread cheddar cheese on bottom bun
5. toast to melt cheeses
6. heat meats and place on buns, ham on bottom, salami on top
build with olives, tomatoes, lettuce, onions and cucumbers
Enjoy the Schlotzsky’s (copycat) Sandwich with a few chips~

Drawings and Sketches

I am not a sketch artist, I think people who are able to draw are born that way, not easy to learn otherwise.  
Painting is something anyone can learn, I never sketched on a canvas before I painted, I just drew circles where a tree would go or where a road run with whatever color I had on my brush. 
Drawing is a real challenge for me but for some reason I like to try.  Before computers, I would write my little sister Nancy ever few days and always draw a picture of a longhorn steer on the outside of the envelope.  
It was good practice and It got easier as time went on.  I am showing a few sketches I saved in a folder.   
I can  appreciate anyone who has the gift of drawing, I know it is hard for those of us who are not born with this special talent.   

Barns and Snakes

this scene was just right for painting, I didn’t have to change a thing in the one I painted.

I have several beautiful photographs of old barns in West Virginia to show you today. Every one would make a good subject for a painting. All of these barns look like they have been here forever. You wonder how they survived termites and weather.  Barns immediately remind me of snakes, there are many varieties in this area but only two are venomous  and dangerous to humans, the Timber Rattlesnake and  the Northern Copperhead. I couldn’t believe the green pastures. everything was lush with vegetation, a refreshing sight. Just a beautiful part of the country. Here in West Texas, a barn is a perfect place for rattlesnakes, some barns are out on remote ranches and no one goes around them for months at a time, so there is nothing to disturbed the snakes. We could almost always find one at Hulldale. It is interesting to look in a barn, there is a feel to them, especially an old one, a little scary too~

this barn had a lot of interesting fences and lush pasture around it, it was another big one. The countryside in West Virginia had lots of barn, most of them were old.

a barn built on the side of a hill, you wonder how they got it level

this was an interesting old gate, it looks like the path had washed away, there is a small barn up there somewhere.

this one is in good shape, it is a little different from most of them and  it was huge

this barn needed a little work


Angelo State University Folk Festival


this is a special photograph for me, sitting behind me were my mother Elizabeth Elder and my little cousin Carroll Morgan, both flew away to heaven within a year~

I was invited to exhibit and demonstrate oil painting at the ASU Folk Festival in February of 1973. I met a lot of people and also saw many familiar faces. I liked the demonstrations, everyone was happy and full of chatter, they enjoyed watching and many of them were also painters. I had my miniature covered wagon and all the little rooms on display so if anyone wasn’t interested in painting, they liked to look at the little things. The famous wood carver, Gene Zesch was also exhibiting his wonderful carvings, he carves old cowboys and anything to do with ranch life, with much skill and unbelievable humor.  I was in good company that day, it is a sweet memory for me~

Miss Piggy and Kermit

she looked pretty happy with him today, it was either lavishing him with kisses or throwing him across the room

When I bought Miss Piggy and Kermit in 1977, she was a hand puppet. She had a big vinyl hollow head, (no body) and the famous elbow length lavender gloves with matching dress.  I had planned from the start to make her into a doll. I made her a soft body, she felt cuddly and nice to hold.

it was fun making the shoes, they were pretty tall wedges.


I carved some platform wedge sandals and added satin straps. (They are in style now) Then I made her a long formal satin evening jacket.

A girl likes some bling

Of course she needed jewels so she had  several stands of pearls, a pearl and gold filigree broach and a tiara for her hair.

here he is in his tux, his character seemed to be a happy go lucky guy



Kermit was just a green frog so I made him a Tuxedo with a pleated shirt, pearl buttons and a cummerbund. I knew it would be what Miss Piggy would want. These two characters have lived at my house, and lived in Sonora, then San Angelo and finally are back with me. (They were Christmas presents that we passed back and forth). They are both in perfect shape, even after 35 years.  We watched the Muppet Shows on TV for several years~ Miss Piggy and Kermit were our favorite characters. I loved those shows. Jim Henson, the famous puppeteer who created the Muppets died in 1990 at age 53.

Wild Turkeys

the mother turkey and one of her babies sitting on the bird bath, I hang the hose in the tree and let the water drip

here is one of the mothers of the two mothers who came this week, they will keep coming back for the food and water~


all kinds of birds like the bird bath. Last year a deer laid her head in the water to cool off~

Some of us had been wondering if there were going to be any wild turkeys after the terrible drought in 2011. They won’t nest unless the condition  is just right for them to at least have a chance. Two hens had been coming up to the water trough and I had been throwing corn and chick feed out for them. One week, they both walked in with 15 babies.They were on the driveway by the garage. I managed to get a picture and then today I got  some of a hen and her baby sitting on the bird bath. What a thrill, I like the wildlife. I can enjoy them and as with the deer, if one in the bunch doesn’t show up that day, I don’t worry, I just suppose it is over at the farm eating at the deer feeders. Not like if a chicken or peacock goes missing and you look until you find it. I am keeping the windmill running to wet down the oak grove, the turkeys like to get in that cool wet place.

Spaying and Neutering Pets

Getting a dog spayed is what a responsible person does. The world doesn’t need two litters of puppies from their dog every year to add to the pet population. So many precious dogs end up in the pound and don’t find a home. Most of our pets have either come from the pound or were abandoned on our road.

this was the day after Spook got fixed, she was in pain and miserable, I felt terrible for her, it made me cry~

This is Spook, I have written about her before because she was such a fine little dog, she made me happy for almost 19 years. The day we found her on the Mertzon road was in early 1980. The following week I took her to Sonora to have her fixed. It was a horrible experience, she was miserable for several days, she was in so much pain. 

Spook turned into the sweetest and happiest little dog ever, she was the perfect one

She recovered and didn’t seem to dwell on her first days at her new home. Later, when we took our dogs  to have them fixed, the procedure was easy and they didn’t seem to suffer any pain.

Schatzie was a baby girl from the pound, she helped drive home after her surgery


(Dan and Debbie had Schatzie fixed at Ronnie’s and she sat up in his lap going home and helped him drive the pickup, same with Kobi, he helped with the driving.) 



here is Kobi with Missy, he was straight out of the pound that day, what a little prize!

the only trama with Jitter Joe was my fault, I am so so sorry Sweetie~

Now with Jitter Joe, it was 11 years ago and I had an appointment with Ronnie to get him fixed and decided to ‘shave’ him myself because he was used to me and didn’t mind me grooming or working on him. In a little while, he started scooting on the carpet and licking himself and I saw that he was all red and irritated where I had done my thing. It got so bad, I called Ronnie’s office to see what I should do and they said to put antibiotic cream on him. Poor baby! I took him the next day to get fixed and they were rolling their eyes up there, inside his whole hindquarter, shaved slick. When I brought him home, I saw that they only had to make a tiny half inch incision in his abdomen and all the shaving I had done was for nothing. Anyway, the good thing is that spaying and neutering doesn’t cause our pets any distress, they are just a little sleepy  afterwards. At church the next Sunday, Scott McGregor told me he had heard the story about ‘my dog’~  word got around~  

White Tail Deer

I was all happy this week when three deer came up in the yard. In the spring there were lots of them and turkeys too. Then they all left~I hope they will be coming back now. I love the wildlife

I had so many starving deer in 2011 during the drought and even with me feeding them 150 lbs of corn a week, seven of them died in the yard. The next spring there were quite a few back again, looking healthy and fit. There were 12 does that came during the day and  then 7 bucks came at night. About three months ago I noticed the corn was still out there every morning and I wasn’t seeing any deer. They usually come every year when the jujube tree has all of the fruit, they kept it clean underneath, even ate the seeds. This time, nothing was eating the fruit, it just piled up on the ground under the trees. Three does came up this week and it was exciting to see them out there. I am just hoping they will come back to stay.  Sometimes life is hard, four years before was a heart-breaker~

Guard Llamas

this is the safest and easiest way to shear a llama, they are gentle but don’t like to be fooled with.

Guard llamas are used in goat and sheep ranching operations to protect the animals from predators~like coyotes, dogs foxes etc. They are not attack animals but fend off the intruder by making an alarm sound, then stalking or chasing it, kicking  it or pawing it. It is usually scary enough that the intruder will leave. Predators can be a real problem with sheep and goats, especially when they are lambing or kidding. Llamas have been know to kill dogs while protecting the flock.The picture today shows a llama being clipped, the wooley hair is too  hot in the summer and they need to be sheared, otherwise they will get in the water troughs to cool off and mess up the water. This one is in a squeeze chute with Claire sitting on top and shearing the hair. She told me you have to stay away from those back legs or they will kick the thunder out of you.

here, Cole and Megan are sacking up the hair~ one llama done, one to go~


Madam Alexander Baby Doll

what a sweet little baby doll, just the right size for a little girl to be a ‘mama’ to

I am showing you another Madam Alexander doll, this one has a story behind her. After Christmas in about 1968, I found a mangled baby doll in the street near Mother’s house. I am sure a dog had had a field day with it, the whole body was in shreds and only parts of it’s dress were left, but there was still a perfect little head and hands and feet. I thought it must have been a doll a little girl had received for Christmas. It was a Madam Alexander so it had been a fine doll. I knocked on doors, left notes and ran an ad in the paper. No one called me. I kept her for several months and then decided to try and restore her. I made her a new body, all soft and limber like a real baby. Then I made a sweet ecru eyelet dress and bonnet , petticoat and panties. Her feet were so cute, I didn’t bother with finding new shoes.  She has been to every tea party that has gone on around here since then, she has been rocked and well loved, but still looks brand new. Everything we have needs to be played with and enjoyed and not just put away for safe keeping. (all the time we still keep an eye out to protect them from harm).  These things take on a real life when they make memories along the way. I love this little doll. I love the little doll who played with her~ 

I always wondered where she came from and what the story was, I am happy to have found her though, she has been a treasure

Jack-knife Drilling Rig

I painted several rigs, this one was near Sheffield in far West Texas

Today I have an oil painting of a jack-knife drilling rig. I painted several kinds of rigs, these seemed to be the most popular. I once painted a full-view indico, which had an open space between four legs on the tower. The standard drilling rigs were popular earlier (now are used mostly for off-shore drilling). They were built for each location, torn down and moved to another to be rebuilt. (in the early years, they were made of wood and left over the well after it was completed) The jack-knife just folded in half and carried to the next location on trucks. It was fast and worked out well.

From Sheffield Hill you can see how remote this location is, this rig was drilling with air, the dust blew for a mile

here are the huge air motors, this is a view from the top of the derrick, they were loud, when we went to visit, everyone wanted to drive off down the road where it was quite and have a picnic

Our friend Matt worked in the oilfields during the summer, between semesters at A&M, running the big motors ‘blowing air’.   Some rigs drill with mud and others drill with air.

huge and noisy, the  job was to keep the motors oiled and running, good work, good pay and a few  furnished a pickup

a great summer job, it was the best  in the oilfield~

this was hard work during hot weather, usually in a remote location, many of miles from home

It was not so dangerous a job as working as a roughneck on the floor or in the tower.

he had lots of visitors that day, all telling him about the time ‘they got hurt in the oilfield’. He soon recovered and ended up with a nice smooth face~

My daddy worked in the oilfields as a roughneck and was one of the lucky ones, he never lost a finger but was burned in a flash fire once. This is a picture of Daddy the day after the fire, he was only burned on his face, he was always careful to wear coveralls and gloves. He was quite proud of this picture, he said his hard hat saved his fine head of hair.

Fitness and Fun

there are stair climbers and treadmills, bicycles, and machines for upper body strength

One December morning it was wet and cold and I was getting my exercise, doing my usual jogging/walking down the road, not too bad until I turned around and started home facing the wind. There was a little sleet hitting my face and my hands were cold.  Before I got back home I decided I could go to the wellness center and sign up for a month or two and try that, and ended up going every day for 4 years.  I went for 45 minutes, the temperature was always just right.  I could close my eyes and plan my day, it was perfect. 

This room is for weight training and the zumba dancing, they get pretty noisy in here~

They also have Zumba classes and I tried those a couple of times, even bought me one of those blingy things you tie around your hips. It was an hour of intense exercise~ the best part was the last five minutes when the lights went down low and we swayed to the sweet sound of Amazing Grace. Anyway, I didn’t feel too good the next day so I gave my blingie away and stuck with the treadmill. Now, I just walk down my road to get exercise.  

running hard, jogging, walking, you pick your speed.

This is more intense than the treadmill, it makes you huff and puff~