Saturday, September 25, 2010

Cajun Corner Vol. 2, No. 37

Cajun Corner – Vol. 2, No. 37 – September 24, 2010

Bon Jour! Welcome to Cajun Stitchery’s weekly email and welcome to our family.


Don’t forget to visit our catalog at and often.

I had a meltdown at the beginning of the week. We decided that I had just been working way too hard and too many hours. We think this is called growing pains. So, we put new procedures into place. I do the computer work and digitizing and then put the disk with the embroidery design and our card with information on the particular job on a specified area in the embroidery room for George to embroider and take from there. That has worked well all week. At first I had everything clipped to a Mardi Gras necklace. Now they are clipped to a bag handle. George is going to fix up a proper place to put the orders. It’s going to be like a short order cook. I guess he’ll be a short order embroiderer. Again this week, Boudreaux has hummed along all week and we have really gotten some work done.

The pillowcases for a couple of my friends were given this week and therefore, I can finally publish the photographs. I am very pleased with the way they turned out. I did a lot of digitizing on these pillowcases and feel like I’m really starting to learn the digitizing area. Although, I still have a long way to go and much to learn.

Next weekend, Oct. 2-3, is the Arts & Wine Festival. We will be busy, busy, busy this week. It will be like Santa’s workshop getting all of this stuff done. I’m looking forward to it.

A friend of mine owns The Island Times and graciously put a very nice blurb about Cajun Stitchery in the paper, as one of the booths at the upcoming Arts & Wine Festival. George and I were surprised at the items we found we were going to be selling. Luckily, all but one was already done and ready to sell. However, she mentioned that we would have Christmas Tea Towels with beach art. That’s now on my to-do list for this coming week. Great idea! When we were preparing for the Splash Party, she wrote an article that listed several games we would be playing. We simply added them to our agenda.

Speaking of my wonderful journalist friend, we were emailing this week and I decided to be cute and write my salutation as “Sister of the Beach” in French. We teach each other French in our emails. I had to look that one up but I felt sure it had to do with soeur, which I knew meant sister, and la mer. I was surprised to find that “Sister of the Beach” is “La soeur de la plage.” That was my salutation. She replied with “l’eau de vie.” That’s not too hard. L’eau means the water. Vie means life. It was the water of life. I had no problem translating that one but thought it unusual as a salutation. I looked it up. Ha! My computer translated it as “Brandy.” I had a good laugh with that one. Of course, I’ve always heard you do not drink the water in France. Brandy would be the water of life. She says her new drinking name is ODV.

Since our two week downpour several weeks ago, we hadn’t had a drop of rain. Of course, we began watering the yard, again.

This week when we turned on the sprinkler for the garden the birds began flocking. It was mesmerizing to watch. Those little birds would bath in the water trays under the potted plants. At one time they were fighting each other to get in the trays of water. My cats had a ball watching those birds. Then each morning we would get a lone, green, hummingbird. Our little Manx cat, Polly, was on the windowsill one morning and that hummingbird was directly on the other side of the screen almost face-to-face with Polly. She was ready to pounce, but, of course, there was the screen. Do you think he was taunting her? I wonder. A neighbor told me that he had a lot of hummingbirds in his yard. Of course, he has hummingbird feeders, too. I don’t. I’ve heard from several friends this week that they have hummingbirds in their yards and the hummingbirds are migrating. It’s just so cool to watch nature like that.

Another friend dropped by this week to visit. One of the reasons she dropped by was to get fresh herbs from the garden. She has to stop using salt and instead, she supplements with herbs. She left with a bag full of purple basil, green basil, rosemary, and some cilantro. I tried getting her to take some bell pepper but she doesn’t like them. We are having a bumper crop of bell peppers this year. But she did bring me a Tabasco plant. Yippee!

I still haven’t finished the ribbon luggage tags. I need to but I don’t like them. I wonder now if I will ever finish them.

Christmas is coming and customers are starting to do their Christmas shopping at Cajun Stitchery. Get this out of the way as soon as you can. For all who have businesses out there, remember that we also sell gift baskets.

Always remember that we are just a call or email away at or 850-261-2462 and place your order.


Boudreaux and Thibodaux were big "RAJUN CAJUN”, USL football fans. They made all the games, but were getting tired of fighting the traffic and not being able to find their truck in the parking lot. So , the next Saturday nite when Boudreaux went to get Thibodaux he was riding a camel. Thibodaux said "where you goin on that camel Boo." Boudreaux said "we will ride this here camel to the game and tie it up by the front gate. That way when the game is over he will be right there an we won't spend all night looking for the truck". So Thibodaux climbed on and off to the game they went. When the game was over they came out and there was 12 camels tied up at the gate. Thibodaux said, "Mercy, How we gonna tell which camel is ours?" Boudreaux said, "I know", and walked over to the first camel, picked up his tail and looked, then he went to the next , and the next. Thibodaux said, "Boudreaux, "What are you doing?" Boudreaux said, "didn't you here that cop say, "Look at them 2 buttholes on that camel when we rode in."


French phrase of the week: Tant qu'à toi, t'es toujours en retard! (As for you, you're always late!)


From an email that I received this week:

Clean Green for a Cat-Safe Home

How to Keep a Clean House Without Sacrificing Your Cat's Health

By Franny Syufy, Guide

We all agree that a clean house is not only desirable, but essential to the health of both humans and the cats who share our homes. Ironically though, our homes are full of household cleaning supplies which can be harmful to our cats, things like chemical cleaners, disinfectants, and insect repellants. In an effort to protect our cats from exposure to toxic substances, while keeping our homes free from dirt and germs, the About Cats Forum members have brainstormed and came up with a list of helpful "clean green" tips and ideas. We have discovered that there are a number of safe products we already have on hand that can be diverted toward safe cleaning.


Vinegar has a multitude of uses both inside and outside the home. Here are just a few:

• Windows: Mix 1/8 cup vinegar with a pint of water for a great window and glass cleaner. Use in a spray bottle and use newspapers to wipe and polish. For a particularly dirty window, add a tablespoon of dish detergent to the mix.

• Floors: Mix 1/2 cup of white vinegar in a gallon of warm water. Use to damp mop vinyl, ceramic tile, or laminate floors.

• Cat Urine Odor in Carpet: If necessary, use a black light to locate the stain. Use a 1:1 ratio of vinegar to water. Soak stain well, and then blot with (recycled) paper towels or an old towel until all liquid is absorbed. Repeat if necessary.

• Stains on Clothing: Gently rub the stain with full-strength vinegar. Allow to site for a few minutes, and then launder as usual. Helpful with fruit, jelly, mustard, coffee or tea stains.

• Clogged Kitchen and Bathroom Drains: Pour 1/2 to 1 cup baking soda into the drain, followed by one cup of hot vinegar. Let sit for several hours, and then follow with very hot water. This tip is also useful as a monthly preventive maintenance, using 1/2 cup baking soda.

• Wood Cutting Boards: Spray or wipe with full-strength vinegar. (It also will remove any lingering onion odors.)

• Ant Control: Spray straight vinegar (or a 1:1 vinegar-water solution) around baseboards and other areas where ants enter the house.

• Weed Control: Spray full-strength on resistant weeds. This is particularly helpful if you have indoor-outdoor cats who venture outside occasionally to much on grass. Also use to kill grass and weeds in cracks in your driveway or sidewalk.

Baking Soda

It seems to be a toss-up between baking soda and vinegar as the most valuable common household product with a multitude of uses. You will see that they are often used together for double-whammy cleaning green.

• Soap Scum in Bathroom: Sprinkle baking soda in sink, tub, or shower, then scrub with a sponge or a nylon scrubber. (Quick Tip)

"Double your whammy" by pouring a cup of vinegar down the drain before rinsing the soda, a great way to keep your drains clean, fresh-smelling, and running free.

• Shower Curtains: Clean and deodorize by scrubbing with a paste of baking soda and water. (From the Arm & Hammer folks.)

• Microwave Cleaning: Sprinkle baking soda on spills and gently rub with your nylon scrubber. Pour a little baking soda on a sponge to clean food splatters on the sides and ceiling. Wipe clean with damp sponge.

• General Surface Cleaning: Sprinkle baking soda on a sponge and wipe surfaces down; rinse and dry. Works on counter tops, stove tops, inside refrigerator, sinks, and laundry appliances. (You can soak the used sponge in a little more backing soda and warm water to keep it smelling fresh.)

• Cockroaches: Mix baking soda and powdered sugar in a 1:1 ratio. Spread in areas where cockroaches are likely to hide (under sink and in cabinets, drawers, and along baseboards.

Bleach (Non-Chlorine)

Household bleach, diluted with warm water in a 1:20 ration is a splendid disinfectant. It is often used in shelters and vet clinics, and can be used at home to clean almost every washable surface, including countertops, floors, as well as litter boxes and plastic automatic water servers and food dishes. Rinse the latter two well with water, and let other surfaces dry before cats walk on them.


Lemons add a fresh, clean scent wherever they are used. Here are just a few ideas for using lemons in a less traditional way than lemonade:

• Make a furniture polish of lemon juice and olive oil in a 1:2 ratio. Use a soft cloth to apply, and then polish to sheen with a clean soft cloth.

• Recycle squeezed lemons by grinding them up in the garbage disposal.

• Lemon peels are a good deterrent to keep cats out of your potted plants, as they generally do not like the smell. Or, use them to keep stray cats out of your garden.

When I put out the call for helpful tips for cat-safe cleaning aids, the Cats Forum members rose to the call with enthusiasm, since we are all concerned for our treasured cats' safety. Susannah aka suayres1 voiced the philosophy of many of us when she posted:

I'm a fanatic on the subject of insecticides and pesticides and even weed-killers. I personally would rather live with the bugs (and use organic controls) and the weeds than salt my land with toxic substances which are known to be carcinogens and pathogens and mutagens and teratogens. I've had cancer twice, and don't want it again, thank you very much. So I've learned to love dandelions and to keep insects out of my house either by using natural controls (tansy planted outside my door, pennyroyal oil painted on doorsills and windowsills, and flypaper hanging near the windows), or just ignore them. I have a deal with the spiders: they can be in my house if they agree to eat other bugs and stay out of my hair. If they come down to my level, they get taken by the hand and gently led outdoors. My house is messy enough to be happy, and clean enough to be healthy, without being SO clean you daren't set food inside. I think this attitude is healthier for me AND the cats!

Bleach Revisited

• Diluted bleach is one of the best cleaners to use in bathrooms, kitchens, and litter boxes, as it kills many germs, including the FIP virus and FeLV. It is not toxic to cats if one doesn't let them walk on the surface while it is wet. Even if they do, it doesn't cause harm to their paw pads and the amount they might lick off their paws will not cause a toxic problem. One assumes the floor would have been mopped normally, without puddles being left behind, and that the bleach was correctly diluted.

Some vet sites recommend a 1:32 dilution, which is 4 oz. bleach in a gallon of water. Others say 1 part bleach to 20 parts water. Apparently a little goes a long way. Since I do take in cats from the streets from time-to-time, and start them out in the bathroom until I can access their status, I really do want to make sure I clean with something that can kill FIP and FeLV since the health status of the "newbie’s" is unknown. Plus it kills people germs too. It kills giardia too, which can affect both cats and people.

I also read that it gets rid of ant scent trails, so folks with ant invasions might want to clean their kitchen with diluted bleach.

- GalensGranny

• Good old bleach is pretty much what is used, even in hospitals, to disinfect stuff--of course, they have to give it a fancy name, "Dakin's Solution", but it's still basically bleach water. I dissolve a tablespoon of it in a quart of water, and keep a spray bottle loaded with it in my bathroom and another in my kitchen. Don't forget about neutralizing the odor with a vinegar-water rinse (bleach and vinegar seem to do a pretty good job of canceling each other out).

- Susannah

Removing Chewing Gum and Gunky Spills

• Oh, yes--removing chewing gum from fabrics, hair, or rugs: rub in ordinary (creamy) peanut butter, until you get all the gum out, then use the same treatment you would to remove oil or grease, to take out the peanut butter. I learned the peanut butter treatment the time my daughter got it stuck in her hair, and it works very well--and is, of course, completely safe for humans and pets. As for removing greasy stains from fabric and carpets, you can take ordinary brown paper bags, and place them over the stain, and then weight them down with something heavy, like a brick covered with aluminum foil.

- Susannah

• ...If it is on carpet or fabric, I put ice in a baggy or use one of those blue ice gel things on top of it. Leave it for a while. Once the gum freezes, you can just pop it right off in one piece.

- Sandra (MARSAN)

More Clean Green Tips

• Scrubbers:

As for scrubbers, I'll go you all one better--and this one doesn't even cost anything! You know the bags in which you buy onions? Cut off the paper tag and you have a great scrubber--it's especially nice when you make bread dough. You take that piece of onion bag and it cleans the bowl beautifully, and then the dough rinses right out of the mesh of the onion bag.

- Susannah

• Pest Control (Outdoors)

For pest control, I use dish liquid and water. I only spray outside, along the foundation and around windows. I usually get invaded by European earwigs in the fall of the year and this method really cuts down on the numbers.

- kelliandtaz

• Eucalyptus oil will remove sticky anything’s from most surfaces. It's brilliant for getting adhesives from Band-Aids etc off skin, chewy/bubblegum out of hair, oily stuff (including most inks) out of suede or leather, tar off car duco etc. If there is any residue, just wash with detergent or soap.


But First, More Odds and Ends

:• Toothbrush and Toothpaste

I use old toothbrushes to clean in the cracks instead of throwing them away. Toothpaste can be used effectively to clean silver, too. I wouldn't want Phugly to eat it though because it could be toxic.

- IamKLS

• Another Safe Silver Polish

The next time you need to polish silver, instead of buying expensive metal polish, make a paste of baking soda and water and use that--it removes tarnish without scratching and it leaves no residue on the silver. I was taught that by an Uncle who collects coins. He told me that's the ONLY safe way to polish silver.

- Susannah (suayres1)

• A Popular All-Purpose Concoction

For several years I have been using a recipe I found on the internet:

1/2 cup Ammonia (I use suds free)

1 pint 70% Alcohol

1 tsp. hand dishwashing liquid

Put these ingredients in a 1 gallon jug and fill with water. I use in spray bottles.

This has been very satisfactory for our household. I use it for everything: kitchen counters, windows, appliances and everything else. It is a disinfectant with the alcohol in it.

- Pauline1101

Franny's Note: Ammonia is toxic if ingested, and can cause lung irritation in humans and cats if inhaled excessively, so keep cats out of the room while it is being used, and store the mixture safely.

• More on the "Concoction"

I use the 91% Alcohol from Kroger which makes it even better, IMO. I put the ammonia and alcohol in the gallon container first, and then fill almost to the top with water, and then I add the dishwashing soap last so it doesn't suds up so much. If you add the dishwashing soap first and then the water you will have lots of suds.

- Rose (10cats)

Commercial Products and "Green" Manufacturers

Many companies have been founded on the premise of respect for our environment, including the animals that populate it. One of the oldest (at close to 50 years) is the Shaklee Corporation, which still produces environmentally safe cleaning products, "biodegradable; free of phosphates, chlorine, borates, and nitrates." Other, newer "Green" companies include:

• Gaiam

Producers of Seventh Generation Products, which are sold in Whole Food stores, and many other fine natural food stores.

• Ecover

Manufactures environmentally friendly products and is actively involved in environmental groups.

• Earth Friendly Products

Their policy on antibacterial products is a must-read.

Other Cat-Friendly Cleaning Products

• Murphy's Oil Soap

This product (now apparently owned by Colgate), has been around for more than half a century, and is loved by every forum member who has used it. I've personally used it for years, and swear by it. As GalensGranny mentioned, it is diluted with water, and a little goes a long way.

• Fels Naptha and Bon Ami

Of course, some of the oldest and most basic cleaning products are still good--ammonia, baking soda, even good, old-fashioned Fels Naphtha soap. I also like "Bon Ami" scouring powder. It's basically just finely ground talc with soap added, and works as well as it ever did. I sometimes think that a lot of the newer, "technically advanced" products have too many drawbacks to make them a viable alternative, at least for me.

- Susannah

• Steam!

When Jerry and Jed were only kitties (a while ago) and they got ringworm I bought a Steam Buggy. It was a wonderful investment, and what I've saved on buying cleaning supplies has paid for it over the past few years. It uses only steam, no chemicals at all and sanitizes everything. I use it in the bathroom, kitchen, oven, litter boxes, windows, EVERYTHING.

- Vet2B (ShannaMarie)

• Fuller's Earth

This can be purchased from a pharmacy. It's a type of clay, which will absorb greasy matter from fabric, and which can then be vacuumed away. You'd leave either the paper or the Fuller's earth on the grease for several hours. If necessary, you can repeat the process until the last of the stain is gone.

Please let me know if there is something that you would like to see in the weekly email. You may always call me at (850) 261-2462 or email me at

If you are not a subscriber and would like to receive Cajun Corner weekly, please email and let me know to put you on our email list.

C’est tout, mes amis

Peggy Henshall

Cajun Stitchery

(850) 261-2462

P.S. You are always welcome to stop by and look at all of the catalogs and pass some time with me, cher.

SALE OF THE WEEK (Good through Thursday, September 30, 2010)

SALE: Toddler Hooded Pullover with Side Pockets + embroidered name = $20.00 + tax/shipping

Rabbit Skins - #3326

Toddler Hooded Pullover with Side Pockets

Sizes: 2T, 4T, 5/6

Colors: aqua, ash, black, brown, heather, navy, olive, pink, raspberry, red, royal blue, Texas orange, white

7.5 oz. 60% cotton/40% polyester fleece. Jersey lined double-needle hem hood and side seam pockets. Ribbed cuffs and waistband. Cover-stitched shoulders, armholes, cuffs and waistband. Top-stitched hood and neck. White is sewn with 100% cotton thread.

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