Friday, September 30, 2011

Cajun Corner - Vol. 3, No. 39

Cajun Corner – Vol. 3, No. 39 – September 30, 2011

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


Don’t forget to visit our blog at, and often.   We are also on Twitter and Facebook. 

Visit our on-line catalogs at:


This week was mostly spent getting ready for the festival this weekend, Pensacola Beach 4th Annual Arts & Wine Festival.  We will be booth #8 at Artists’ Village in the parking lot of the Visitors Center on Pensacola Beach.  The festival is 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.  It is free and worth the drive out.  Stop by and say “hi”.

I made so many can wraps this week that one evening I was tired, had a glass of wine and wrote a Can Wrap Rap.  This has been the source of a lot of laughter.  Who knew I could write rap? 

Woke up this morning - to sew and embroider

It keeps me off the streets - so I don't loiter

I wanted to make - something functional

So I - could - have lunch and munch you know

I made a can wrap

Yes I did, it's so cool

I made a can wrap

It's adjustable

Buy my can wrap

Only 7 bucks each

Have a can wrap

And take it to the beach.

Someone mentioned that I should dress like a rapper and have my pants hanging low and my underwear showing.  My response was that the visual image of old lady’s panties showing out the top of the pants is more than I can bear.  However, we were really tempted to dress me up like a rapper with my ball cap on sideways and the whole rap  costume, take a picture and post it on my teenage granddaughter’s Facebook page.  I called my son in Tampa and sang my rap song.  He thinks I’ve lost my mind.  As for the old lady’s panties hanging out the top of the pants, he said, “Mom.  Don’t go there.” 

One of my friends sent a humorous email about how to be a blues singer.  One of the items was how to choose a stage name for a blues singer.  Using that criteria and understanding that this is rap and not the blues, we did coin my rap name – Too Short Cajun Mama.  George is calling me “Too Short.”

We had friends sending in additional lyrics to the rap, as well. 

My neighbors have been writing rap lyrics for everything this week.  Some of you will remember that we named our neighborhood group the Possum Pack.  We took note this week that Heidi the cross-eyed possum passed away in a German zoo.  Yes, this was in the news.  One of our neighbors wrote his rap, Ode to Heidi.

As much fun as we have had with rap lyrics this week, it just goes to show what a great marketing tool jingles are.  Think about the great commercial jingles.  Who remembers:  I’m a pepper, you’re a pepper, he’s a pepper, she’s a pepper, wouldn’t you like to be a pepper, too.  Yep, after all of these years, I still know the Dr. Pepper song.  Or, I’d like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony – Coca Cola.  Visually, people remember pictures; and, audibly, people remember music and rhyme.  I need to write a Cajun Stitchery jingle.  I’m open to ideas. 

Cajun Stitchery has made some beautiful and fun things this week.  We’ve worked until 11 p.m. almost every night and there is still so much left to do.

We received several Cajun jokes via email from various friends.  These jokes will be used over the next several weeks.  However, the joke for this week is George’s favorite and had us both laughing until we cried.  Keep those jokes coming.

CHRISTMAS is around the corner.  Get that Christmas shopping done now and enjoy the holidays.

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. 

Thank you Marshall Larrivere for the following:

Walking into the bar, Boudreaux said to Charlie

the bartender, “Pour me a stiff one - just had another fight with the

little wife.”

“Oh yeah?” said Charlie, “And how did this one end?”

“When it was over,” Boudreaux replied, “She came

to me on her hands and knees.”

“Really,” said Charles, “Now that's a switch!?

What did she say?”

She said, “Come out from under the bed, you little



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.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Cajun Corner - Vol. 3, No. 38

Cajun Corner – Vol. 3, No. 38 – September 23, 2011

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


Don’t forget to visit our blog at, catalog at and often.   We are also on Twitter and Facebook. 

Visit our new on-line catalog at:

Another busy week at Cajun Stitchery.  The Pensacola Beach 4th Annual Arts & Wine Festival is next weekend and we are in a flurry around here.  I’m so excited because my dear friend has offered to come over and help out on Monday.  George is taking the week off from house remodeling to help, too.  Today I received the rules and regulations from the Pensacola Beach Chamber of Commerce.  I was impressed that the rules weren’t too stringent or outrageous.  I can abide by these – I think.  They want me to link my website to their website.  I don’t know how to do that.  If anyone out there has a clue, let me know.

I met with lots of people this week.  My friend at came by to pick up her embroidery and we had a wonderful conversation and I learned all about  There is a coupon site on the internet called Groupon.  They are international.  ToucanSave is similar but they are local to the Pensacola/Panhandle area.  They offer great deals for local businesses.  All you have to do is register on their website.  They have a referral program where if someone purchases the deal from your referral, then you get Toucan Bucks.  As you accumulate Toucan Bucks, you can get additional discounts.  I asked her how I could help her business and she said that what they need right now is for more people to register.  That doesn’t sound difficult.  If you are in the Pensacola/Panhandle area, please go to and register.  That’s it.  No strings.  It’s free.  If you would like to engage in the referral program, that’s great, too.  We all talk about supporting local businesses.  This is a local business that needs our help and to support them is so simple and free.  Let’s help this local business out.  Hey, maybe if lots of people register she’ll buy more embroidery. LOL.  I would like that.

After she left, I decided that I would get on Facebook and let everyone know how simple it is to help this local business.  I posted this message in almost every group and page that I could.  I emailed many of you and asked you to register.  You know, it felt wonderful to help someone else.  There is an old poem that is one of my favorites.  Without reciting the entire poem the gist is when you are down or feeling low, do something for someone else, quick.  There is a lot of wisdom in that. 

My ToucanSave friend was so grateful for my help, that she is helping me make some connections that I need in my business.  I know a lot of people on the beach, in Gulf Breeze, and Pensacola but I have no connections to Perdido.  I live half way between Pensacola Beach and Perdido Key.  It would be just as easy for me to embroider for people in Perdido Key as it is for me to do embroidery for my Pensacola Beach friends.  These connections are valuable to me.  The whole thing just worked out so sweet.

Remember the Senior Xtremers guy that approached me sometime ago about starting a merchandising line for Senior Xtremers television program?  It turned out that I knew one of his daughters from my WBL group.  This week she contacted me for an embroidery quote.  She works at a place called Officepointe.  They are an office supply company but do so much more.  Part of their business is photocopiers.  They do printing.  They also take in screen printing and embroidery jobs and sub them out.  I happened to be the lucky embroiderer for this particular job.  As it turned out, a friend of mine on Facebook recently resigned his job as a photocopier salesman.  So, I was able to impart that information and ask her to keep him in mind if Officepointe or anyone else that she knows might need someone with those qualifications.  If any of you know of an opening for a photocopier salesman, please email me and I’ll give you my friend’s contact information.

Yesterday I met my new artsy girlfriend for lunch at Bonelli’s Italian Restaurant.  I like to go to Bonelli’s because, well, the food and service is just wonderful.  More than that, I know the owners because my friend and CPA brought the owner’s daughter to a, what else, WBL meeting.   So, when my artsy girlfriend wanted me to suggest a place for lunch, I, of course, suggested Bonelli’s.  Another small business that needs all the help they can get.  As it turned out, our cayenne peppers are abundant and beautiful this year.  My CPA and friend, who I also met at WBL, had dinner with us last weekend and said that Bonelli’s would probably appreciate me giving them some of the peppers.  When I went to meet my artsy girlfriend for lunch, I brought along a bag of peppers.  They did seem grateful.  Sure hope they were able to use the peppers for some scrumptious dish.

My new artsy girlfriend and I bonded almost immediately.  She does beautiful glass art, as well as soap art.  She works full time at MADD and never seems to have the time she would like for her art.  We talked about so many things and found many common likes.  One of the most amazing things is that it turned out that she lives in the same building where the daughter of one of my krewe members lives.  In fact, they know each other.  She brought a box of her soap petals and the fragrance was fabulous.  I cannot even imagine how she gets that soap shaped into those delicate petals.  Her soap company is called “Redhead Soap Works.”  I love that name.  We talked a lot about making soap.  I am definitely going to try my hand at making soap but mine will be functional and not artistic.  We were also partly celebrating that she was approached by an art gallery in New Orleans to show her glass art.   Woohoo!  You go girl!

My artsy friend is Irish American.  She is 1st generation in the United States.  She doesn’t have an accent, though.  She was able to give me a lot of pointers about potential designs with an Irish flare.  I’m trying to connect her with my dear friend who is also of Irish descent.  Now I’m starting to understand the importance of my friend telling me that she could speak the Irish language.  My artsy friend said it’s because the language is outlawed in Ireland and Scotland.  Amazingly, she was very knowledgeable about the Cajun plight, as well.  Her family came from Ireland to the U.S. via Nova Scotia.  Well, I guess you could say that my family came from Nova Scotia (before it was Nova Scotia and called Acadie).

A gentleman friend on Facebook messaged me about embroidering his company name and his name on a shirt.  His company is Uptown Park Records Incorp.  He turned out to be such a nice young man.  He is only 29.  He said he has owned his own businesses since he was 18 years old.  When he came by today to pick up his shirt, his daughter came with him.  She is an adorable 8 year old.  He is such a nice guy.

Remember the guy from Memphis who bought some tea towels from me at the festival last year?  He placed an order for tee shirts and I shipped them to him earlier this week.  He emailed me today and said he just loves those shirts better in person than he did via photographs (and he loved the photographs).  He did mention that one design didn’t look exactly centered but he just glanced at it and will have to look closer later.  Of course, I told him that I thought it was centered but if he has an issue with it, we will make it right.  I only want happy customers.  So, he emailed me back and told me not to worry about it.  He said that if it looks like it’s not centered when it is worn; he will just keep drinking until it does look centered.  Nice, nice guy.

As I mentioned last week, I had to unfriend 4 people on Facebook because they were hackers.  This week a lady messaged me on Facebook, asking to be my friend and asked if it would be okay if she posted about coffee.  How weird is that?  I friended her and asked her what she meant.  She sells an herbal coffee substitute.  If that floats her boat, that is fine with me.  Personally, I have coffee pumping through my veins and genes.  So, she and I started messaging back and forth and becoming friends.  I explained that I was hesitant because of my recent hacker experiences.  She understood and said that one of her friends had to get the sheriff’s department involved because a hacker was using his name.  When she told me his name I was astounded.  I messaged her back and said that was one of the hackers that I had to de-friend.  Turns out a hacker was using his Facebook page and causing all kinds of havoc.  The guy is a Navy Chaplain and my new friend says he is as kind and nice as can be.

It has been busy here at Cajun Stitchery this week and I love it.  I love people.  They are so interesting and entertaining. 

I’m going to continue the same sale I had last week.  Does your dog have a job? Is he/she unemployed? Hire your pet to advertise for you. Have your logo embroidered on your dog's jacket. People are drawn to babies and animals. Let Fido earn her keep:>)”  In my endeavor to keep your dogs employed, please read our sale of the week, below:

SALE (good through 9/29/11):  3900 Doggie Skins Doggie Ringer T-Shirt

  • 5.8 oz. 100% combed ring-spun cotton baby rib
  • Contrast double needle ribbed binding on neck, sleeves & bottom

Colors:  black/raspberry, brown/lt blue, lt blue/navy, pink/raspberry

Sizes:  XS, S, M, L

$9.54 (normal retail price is $10.54) (price is without embroidery)

Even if you don’t want a logo embroidered on the tee shirt, your dog’s name is always a good idea.

CHRISTMAS is around the corner.  Get that Christmas shopping done now and enjoy the holidays.

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. 

Taken from:

Acadiana is the home of the Cajun people, the descendents of the Acadians, who settled along the bayous and prairies of southwest Louisiana after their expulsion from Acadie (Nova Scotia) in 1755. It is a place of the incredibly rich musical, cultural and culinary traditions of the Cajuns and Creoles, and is a place like no other. Warm and wonderfully hospitable people, many living simple but rich lives, great food, dancehalls ringing with rollicking music and trembling with the combined foot-stomping of hundreds of dancers, and the quiet, singular beauty of the bayous and swamps of the Atchafalaya Basin ...

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.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Cajun Corner - Vol. 3, No. 37

Cajun Corner – Vol. 3, No. 37 – September 18, 2011

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



Don’t forget to visit our catalog at and often.   We are also on Twitter and Facebook. 

Visit our new on-line catalog at:

Poo yie!  This week has been busy, cher.

I try very hard not to use anyone’s name in this publication unless I feel pretty confident that they will not be offended.  Mais, that did not even help last week.  People were offended because they knew who they were without names.   I guess sometimes you just cannot win.

There were so many activities this week for a small business to attend.  I just could not attend everything.  There were expos, Gallery Night, Toastmasters, WBL, various luncheons and meetings.  On top of everything, I was and am busy getting ready for the upcoming 4th Annual Pensacola Beach Arts & Wine Festival the first weekend in October. 

Our new tablecloths came in.  I’m really trying to spruce up the Cajun Stitchery booth.  The tablecloths are blue and floor length.  I was trying to work on some hand painted signs but I’m an embroiderer and not a real painting artist.  Painting is just one more thing that I am going to have to learn how to do.    

I was reading a blurb on Facebook from one of my business friends.  I guess she sells soap but the blurb was about the chemicals in soaps that you purchase from the store.  Oh my.  How do they get away with using all of those chemicals on people?  Then she made a statement that just hit home for me.  She asked if we have noticed more people with allergies and sensitivities to a variety of things, including soap, in recent years.  As a matter of fact, I have.  My ADD personality decided that I needed to learn how to make soap.  My niece makes vegan soap.  I have friends who make soap.  I have made glycerin soap and read about soap making in the past. So, now I have spent a lot of time researching soap making and by golly, we may just start using homemade soap.

I’m starting to feel like I live on Little House On The Prairie. We grow the garden.  I make our bread.  Now soap?  I just want us healthy.  Mama is surely rolling her eyes and laughing.   

The garden is one of my passions.  Our beautiful spring garden turned into a lush jungle over the summer.  It was sad to have to pull up those plants.  We decided not to pull everything up, just one area that was beginning to look spent.  George planted carrots, onions, garlic, English peas, broccoli and lettuce.  Some of the fall plants have already germinated.  The part of the garden that we did not pull is still producing tomatoes, peppers and green beans.  Now I’ve noticed we are starting to get eggplant and cucumbers.  The watermelon plants have flowers and are beautiful but no watermelon.  I need to get out there and trim some of the herbs for drying.  The cayenne peppers have gone amuck this year.  They are beautiful but there is no way I can use that many peppers.  I guess I’ll start drying those, as well.  If you want a mess of cayenne, drop by the house and get some fresh off the plants.

A few weeks ago a gentleman emailed me saying that he visited the Cajun Stitchery booth last year at the Arts & Wine Festival and purchased several of our Christmas tea towels.  He continued that he enjoyed handing those towels out as gifts to his friends.  This year he will not be able to make the festival but will be coming to Pensacola Beach later in October with some friends for their vacation.  He wanted me to embroider some tee shirts for him and his friends.  That was very flattering.  I sent him to one of the embroidery design websites,  I have most of those designs.  He chose his designs, sent me the tee shirts and I did the appropriate embroidery.  He now needs to pay me so that I can ship the shirts to him.  For some reason, this week my emails either haven’t gotten to him or he is on another computer.  He kept emailing asking for the cost.  I kept sending it.  Finally, I just called him.  Sure enough he was on a different computer this week and just hadn’t seen my emails.  He is such a delightful gentleman and we had a very pleasant conversation.  When he gets here for his vacation, he may be calling me to come out for a drink on the beach.  It is exciting meeting new people, especially new customers.  Of course, he tells me that we met last year but there were so many people that, sadly, I don’t remember.

Speaking of people and friends, I had to “unfriend” 4 people on Facebook lately.  They were hackers.  I don’t think I’ll ever understand why people do that or create and spread viruses intentionally.  Those people need a garden for sure.

Another friend, from my business groups, placed an order this week for embroidery on a nice bag and some kitchen towels.  They have turned out beautiful and almost ready for delivery.  She has an interesting business,  It is a coupon-like business, similar to Groupon, but is local.   If you are local, you really need to visit her website and register for the great savings.  It costs you nothing to register and you get some great deals and savings.  It is a win-win.

While doing her embroidery yesterday, I embroidered several tea towels, as well.  I think some of my Nereid girls are going to like my little mermaid tea towels.  “Unique” doesn’t even come close to describing my Nereids.  If I am going to embroider mermaids, I better have them with blonde hair, black hair, and brown hair.  In fact, I have 3 Nereid birthdays coming up soon and I have run out of bath towels.

Thursday night we visited friends for dinner and a game of Scrabble.  One of my friends works in marketing for a large corporation and gets all sorts of items to test and see if it might be something his company wants to purchase.  I was presented with a bottle of sparkling liqueur for test purposes.  The bottle is beautiful with a screw on cap rather than a cork.  George said we could dump the contents and save the bottle for a vase.  It is a beautiful bottle.  I would never waste good liqueur.  Last night my CPA/friend came to dinner and we tried the new liqueur.  It is pink.  It definitely fizzes and bubbles in the glass.  The aroma is very fruity and pleasant.  The taste is good.  It is sweet.  I like sweet wine.  I asked my CPA if she would purchase that, if available.  Her answer is the same as mine, “if the price is right.”  So, we both agreed that it is a good liqueur that we would not mind having again.  However, to spend money, it would have to be in the same ballpark as the usual dinner wine.  The ingredients initially made us hesitant, but it was good.  It is French white wine with French vodka, French sparkling wine, fruit flavors and carbonation.  Made in France, imported in London, distributed in Connecticut. 

Several of our friends have gone to New Orleans for the Saints game today.  Some are spending the weekend; others have just gone for the day.  Still others will be watching the game on TV.  There will be several fleur de lis for sale at our booth.  Geaux Saints:>)

Continuing to market Cajun Stitchery, I posted an ad on my Facebook groups this week that got a chuckle.  Does your dog have a job? Is he/she unemployed? Hire your pet to advertise for you. Have your logo embroidered on your dog's jacket. People are drawn to babies and animals. Let Fido earn her keep:>)”  In my endeavor to keep your dogs employed, please read our sale of the week, below:

SALE (good through 9/22/11):  3900 Doggie Skins Doggie Ringer T-Shirt

  • 5.8 oz. 100% combed ring-spun cotton baby rib
  • Contrast double needle ribbed binding on neck, sleeves & bottom

Colors:  black/raspberry, brown/lt blue, lt blue/navy, pink/raspberry

Sizes:  XS, S, M, L

$9.54 (normal retail price is $10.54) (price is without embroidery)

Even if you don’t want a logo embroidered on the tee shirt, your dog’s name is always a good idea.

CHRISTMAS is around the corner.  Get that Christmas shopping done now and enjoy the holidays.

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. 

Taken from:

The year, 1712. The Louisiana colony has grown very little in the past eight years since the Pelican girls arrived. Less than 50 people live in the area now known as Louisiana. A new governor has been appointed, his name, Antonie Cadillac. He wasted no time in wanting to establish trade with the Spanish in Mexico.

For this important work he chose Louis Juchereau de St. Denis, the 11th of 12 children, born near Quebec. He had studied in Paris at the Royal College. Stories abounded concerning his love affairs and duels. Most perhaps just legends. St. Denis' entire life was what legends were made of.

Cadillac could not have made a better choice than St. Denis, commander of Fort de la Boulaye along the Gulf coast. St. Denis was a heroic figure to both the French and the Indians of western Louisiana. He spoke several Indian languages and Spanish fluently. He was greatly respected as a talented salesman and skilled diplomat. It was known that he could talk his way into - an out of - almost any situation.

Governor Cadillac had recently received a letter from the Spanish priest Father Hadalgo working with the Tejas Indians in east Texas. He was asking for the governor to please send some French priests to help him as the Spanish refused to allow more priests to cross the Rio Grande. The governor thought that this could be a great cover and excuse to send someone to explore the possibilities of trade with the Spanish and possible Mexico.

St. Denis set out on the first leg of his journey following the Mississippi to the Red River where he met the Natchitoches Indians. He stopped on his way to the Tejas Territory long enough to sign a treaty with the Natchitoches tribe. The Indians were so impressed with this 6 foot, well built, Frenchman that they called him Chief Pretty Legs. The title partly came because of his preference to bright colored clothes- yellow jackets, red pants, and white silk stockings.

While there he built a storehouse for his extra supplies and left a few men to build a garrison or fort. The fort would become the first permanent settlement in the French colony, Fort St. Jean Baptiste de Natchitoches.

St. Denis then headed west with 25 men leaving only 10 behind. They crossed the Sabine. They traded goods with the Indians all throughout east Texas. Guns, knives, beads - all traded for furs and livestock. The Indians helped guide St. Denis to Father Hadalgo - of which they never found. All the while, traveling deeper and deeper into Spanish Texas.

St. Denis quickly learned the dialects of the various tribes. After months of travel he neared the Rio Grande along the Mexican border. He was ready to cross, knowing that the Spanish had ordered their troops to shoot anyone crossing. He was heading to the nearest Spanish fort or persideo on the river. St. Denis saw the fort that guarded the border - he was not fazed. Onward he headed.

The fort at San Juan Bautista first got word of the coming of St. Denis from the Indians. Tribes of them kept reporting the advance of pale faced troops. They had killed many Indians they said. The Apache, Commanche and so on. That alone was a feat to inspire Indian talk.

The fort worried - Was this an invasion? A massacre? Change in country ownership? Exaggerated speculation flew wildly throughout the fort. Soldiers at the fort were ready. Then they saw them - approaching from the direction of the Rio Grande. Out over the plains. A small band of men. A soldier adjusted his field glasses again. Was it an advance party? Where were the rest of the troops?

Before the guards could properly challenge him, St. Denis announced in loud, perfect Spanish that he wanted to see the commandant. The soldiers granted his wish.

Inside the fort St. Denis used his polished manners, fresh and beautifully tailored uniform, and forceful Spanish to show that he was not a man to be taken lightly. Any slight blunder by this invader might have changed the history of the southwest forever. Being the salesman that he was, St. Denis soon talked his way into the good graces of fort commandant Captain Don Diego Ramon.

The fort was so far removed from regular visitors, there was a general excitement in the air about this strange Frenchman. Captain Ramon was bewildered at his guest; however, had no choice but to arrest him. Orders were orders. Only two years earlier the viceroy of Mexico issued strict orders to stop all foreigners.

Arrest could mean many things and St. Denis was placed under house arrest and allowed to roam the fort at will. A prisoner yes but also a very distinguished guest. As the days passed, St. Denis dined with Ramon and talked of trade between the two outposts. St. Denis was an expert storyteller and exhibited a wonderful sense of humor. While at San Jaun Baptista he also met and fell in love with the captain's granddaughter, Emanuelle Sanche de Navarro. She was just seventeen. St. Denis was 37.

Manuela was known as the most beautiful girl in all of Northern Mexico. Her fair skin was in sharp contrast to that of the other Spanish. St. Denis was charmed by her exotic loveliness. The stage was set for romance - strangers meeting under dangerous circumstances.

Even more dangerous was the fact that Emanuelle was the sweetheart of the governor of Northern Mexico. If St. Denis was to steal the governor's girl, Spanish heads might come off at the persideo. The family was impressed with St. Denis, yet worried. What if officials in Mexico City found out they were housing a Frenchman?

However, it was easy to see, that this young girl was apt to make her own decision: she was in love with the Frenchman from Louisiana. A fiery young Spanish girl in love was not going to be an easy force to control.

It didn't take long before Maneula's former Spanish fiancé reported the foreigner at the fort. Maneula was angry. She didn't want to marry the widower Don Gaspardo Anya. "He was so ugly and so fat and more worried about stuffing his face than loving me." she said. I refuse. I won't marry him.

Within days 25 Spanish soldiers rode into San Juan Baptista and put St. Denis in chains and carted him off to Mexico City. The whole city was buzzing; everyone wanted to see this brave Frenchman. Don Gaspardo descended on St. Denis' cell and offered him his freedom if he would just leave the lovely senorita of San Juan Baptista

St. Denis refused.

The governor was furious. He dispatched a message to Emanuelle saying that if she did not consent to marry him her lover would be put to death. St. Denis' calmness and poise bewildered the Spanish. It didn't take long before the smooth talking St. Denis had talked his way out of jail. He convinced the Spanish officials that he was on their side. He wanted to marry and become a Spanish subject. It must have worked. Not only was he set free but placed as second in command to 65 men being sent to regain East Texas and reestablish the Spanish dominance there.

They met with French officials and set up several missions there to reclaim the land. One, San Migual de los Adeas, was built just 15 miles west of Fort St. Jean Baptiste de Natchitoches, St. Denis' first garrison. There is was a Spanish mission right under the noses of the French!

St. Denis came back to San Juan Baptista a hero. The whole Ramon family was impressed as well as grateful. Time was precious and a wedding was planned. The first international wedding of importance in the new world. It would be a large Catholic wedding and celebrated by everyone. Wedding dresses had to be selected, arrangements made. The shopping tour to the south took over a month. San Juan Baptista became a riot of color.

Never had the frontier witnessed such an impressive occasion. The entire population turned out, Indians and Spanish alike lined the bridal path. At the alter, seven priests gave up saving lost souls just to officiated the Catholic service that overflowed the chapel. The wedding festivities lasted three days. Church bells rang out. It was all play and no work at the presidio. The marriage was a social affair the frontier would not soon forget.

St. Denis and his bride soon moved back to Natchitoches and set up housekeeping on a small vachiere deep in the woods along the Red River.

Within two years war broke out between the French and Spanish in Europe. The French ordered their colonial troops to move against the Spanish in western Louisiana. Seven scouts were selected and sent to report on San Migual los Adeas. When they arrived, they found the gates were open. They rode inside and found - and captured the whole garrison - only a priest and one lone soldier stood between them and victory.

As they began to celebrate their victory and steal goods, they knocked over several chicken cages allowing them to escape. The chickens scared the horses throwing the riders causing several injuries. The seven French scouts had driven the Spanish out of Eastern Texas in what would become known as the "Great Chicken War".

The French had won.

Within two years the Spanish were back claiming the land along the Red River as their boundary. This time there would be no small mission; this time there would be a real fort. Fort los Adeas would come alive with over 100 well supplied and well trained Spanish soldiers. It would become the Spanish Capital of Texas for the next 50 years.

St. Denis was renamed commandant of Fort St. Jean Baptist de Natchitoches and he protested the Spanish fort on French soil. The Spanish wouldn't give in - and neither would St. Denis. Over the years several Spanish commanders came and went, none able to stop St. Denis and the French from trading with the Spanish and Indians to the west of Natchitoches. Trading went on under the cover of darkness and in broad daylight. French and Spanish alike knew it was going on; they just looked the other way.

During all this time the Spanish never found a way to out-scheme St. Denis. As long as he was alive he was a thorn in the flesh of the Spaniards. He outwitted them at every turn. To them and the Indians he was never "commandant", "Indian Agent", "Commander", "friend", or "foe", it was simply St. Denis. To everyone - that was his title. He maintained his magnetic personality with the Indians, the Spanish, and the French. He played all sides for his gain.

To the Indians, when St. Denis died, they lost a God. Their Chief Pretty Legs. And a legend was created.

As the years and wilderness took their toll; St. Denis requested that he be relieved of duty, allowed to retire to Mexico with his wife. The French government, having no one like him to name as a replacement, delayed his request time and time again. The permission never came. "His desire for rest and peace and a few quiet days in private life with Emanuelle ...was never realized. One June 11, 1744, he passed away as quietly as the evening shadows. He died as commandant.
A leader.
Chief Pretty Legs.

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.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Cajun Corner - Vol. 3, No. 36

Cajun Corner – Vol. 3, No. 36 – September 9, 2011

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



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We survived Tropical Storm Lee but we did get wet and windblown.  The garden took a beating with the wind and the little tomatoes have been bursting all week from so much moisture.  Thank goodness we did not experience any damage.  All of the dead limbs were blown out of the trees and that’s about it.  TS Lee did allow me to get a lot of embroidery done, though.

On a sad note, one of our neighbors passed away in her sleep this week.  She was about my age.  This came as a complete surprise to everyone.  The neighborhood has been in mourning all week. 

Since we stayed indoors most of last weekend due to the storm, when I wasn’t embroidering, I was, of course, on the computer.  I love Facebook.  I love meeting people on Facebook.  And I love marketing on Facebook.  Apparently, you have a limit on Facebook of 5,000 friends.  You know, I probably never would have thought about it until I learned that 5,000 was the limit.  Since then my goal is to have 5,000 friends on Facebook.  Of course, I do not know 5,000 people on Facebook.  I take the opportunity to meet people on Facebook and I have made some good friends that way.  Like my Mama, I’m a very gregarious person.  Over the weekend my friend count turned 2900.  I was clicking on “invite a friend” pretty frequently.  Facebook punished me and put me on restriction.  I was told that I could not invite a friend for 2 days.  I think Facebook kind of straddles a line in this area.  On the one hand, they want you to meet people.  On the other hand, they don’t want anyone’s privacy invaded.  So, I accepted my punishment.  But then Facebook punished George.  Now George does have a lot of friends on Facebook but he definitely does not randomly request friends like I do.  George actually checks each of his potential friends out before he ever invites them.  Where I may send out hundreds of friend requests a day, George may send out one or two.  He received the same punishment as I did.  Now we have no idea what either of us did wrong.  However, we both waited out our 2 day restrictions.

In the meantime, we could still use Facebook.  We just couldn’t request friends.  As I’ve mentioned before, I belong to several “groups” on Facebook.  I’m only active in a few of them.  One of the more recent groups is Support Local Pensacola Businesses.  Being stuck in the house for the weekend, I was entertained by a new business not far from our home.  It is a discount grocer.  One day, over the weekend, he was posting his sales one right after the other.  He was having some wonderful sales.  Not only was I enjoying his sales but others were, too.  All of a sudden another member posted that the grocer was posting too much and should stop.  Of course, that was ridiculous.  The grocer was only doing what the name of the group implies.  How in the world can you support local businesses if you don’t know that they are out there and what they do?  The group is obviously a marketing tool to try to even out the competition with big businesses like Wal-Mart.  Wal-Mart and other big stores are in your face constantly.  Their ads are in newspapers, TV, radio, benches, buses, billboards, and wherever they are allowed to put their name.  Small businesses usually do not have the luxury of a large marketing dollar and we have to take what we can get and be as creative as possible.  This is why the statement about posting was so outrageous.  Not long after the post was sent, the administrator of the group posted rules for the group.  Frankly, I thought I was on Candid Camera.  The rules state that businesses can only post once per day.  That defeats the whole point of marketing when the Wal-Marts of the world are in your face every few minutes, all day long.  What really irritated me was had I been the grocer guy, that post would have humiliated me.  So, I was clicking the “Like” button and posted comments on all of the grocer’s posts to bring them to the top again.  The grocer, of course, stopped posting.  I didn’t say anything about how rude and inappropriate I thought the “rules” were.  I did some research on Facebook in their “Help” area and found that there are no rules for groups from Facebook.

The following day, I decided to go to the grocer’s Facebook page.  My heart sank when I saw he had to have his dog put down that morning.  The man was grieving.  I watched the group the next day to see what would happen.  Although the grocer was not posting at all, a chef started posting.  The chef’s posts were equally as pleasing as the grocer’s.  In fact, the chef’s posts made me think of Mama.  This chef will come to your house and cook all of your meals for a week (freezing them) for $90.  He goes on to explain that there are 3 meats and so many vegetables and salads, etc.  You pay for the food – and he will gladly do the shopping for you, too, if you like.  What a great idea! He even leaves your kitchen spotless when he goes. My mother would have hopped on that band wagon immediately.  But there was more.  He had another post that showed a picture of a romantic evening.  He will come to your house and cook a romantic meal, create the romantic ambiance, and serve you – at your own home.  The post was from one of his customer’s anniversary.  Wow!  I would never have thought of this.  I was all over these posts until another post appeared from a guy that I know saying the chef was abusing the post rules.  Are you kidding me?  At that point, I lost it.  I do not believe that I was ugly but I did reply to the rude post that it may be his opinion that this guy is abusing the posts but that is merely his opinion.  I stated that I was enjoying them tremendously.  I said that I had also enjoyed the grocer’s post the previous day.  That I had looked on Facebook for rules for groups and failed to find any.  Let’s say that I stated my objections and ended by saying that at this point I was afraid to post my embroidery for fear of intimidation.  Not long afterwards my post was removed from the group and the administrator, again, posted the rules.  Again, I was clicking “Like” and commenting to the chef’s posts.

The following day I went to the grocer’s Facebook page, again.  OMG!  His truck was wrecked.  This guy had a terrible week and I felt awful for him.  I continued to monitor the group and “Like” and comment on the grocer and the chef as much as possible.  Yesterday, George and I went to the grocer’s store and met the grocer.  We all had a big laugh.  We did purchase some groceries and became friends with the grocer and his staff.

In the meantime, the chef messaged me that he wants some embroidery done.

Last night a friend of mine came by to pick up her embroidery and I began explaining the Facebook group story to her.  She, too, knew one of the “go by the rules” guys.  She also understood how ridiculous the rules are.  She asked me to invite her into the group.  After she left, I did just that and invited her into the group.  Then the fun began.  She got on the group and “liked” and commented on both the grocer and the chef posts.  By this time both the grocer and the chef were back posting their multiple posts.  Finally, Rule Man reared his ugly head again.  I cannot even remember the things she said but she had me laughing until tears were pouring.  She made her point clear:

(Rule Guy):  This was posted by the group moderator - ATTN GROUP MEMBERS !!! Please try to limit your posts to one per day, in order to give everyone an equal opportunity to share news and updates about their business here. Also, you MUST be located in PENSACOLA. Anyone who becomes abusive or spam-like will have their posts removed the first time, and will be banned from the group if it continues. Thank you for your cooperation!

       My friend: It's such a small world.

Rule Guy:  did u miss me? Lol

My friend:  I'm sorry according to the rule above, I will have to respond to you tomorrow.

Rule Guy:  comments don't count. And I am not the moderator - i just copy and pasted the statement of such.

My friend:  No, it says posts. This is my fourth post. I'm a stickler for the rules.

I hope you are doing well. We will have to catch up somewhere other than this board.

Rule Guy:  surely!

After that I stayed up very late doing my usual posting on the internet and stuff.  I noticed that a bit before midnight Rule Man posted about his business.  Then around 1 a.m. he posted again.  Rather than quote the rules, he did post on 2 different days about an hour or two apart, I simply clicked “like” on his posts.  Few local people would have seen his posts because most would be sleeping by that time.  I just don’t think the man “gets it” when it comes to how to market.

Through the whole thing, I walked away with a good laugh and a couple of new friends.  It is a good lesson and thank goodness I was able to benefit from it.  George and I can now request friends on Facebook, again.  As an aside, the grocer told me that Facebook put him on restriction last weekend, too.

Something else occurred this week on Facebook.  I was posting a sale for tablecloths.  I can get some really good deals on tablecloths.  I had posted the sale on several different pages and a friend commented asking where was the sale and who was I posting for.  Of course, my response was that it was Cajun Stitchery’s sale.  This made me realize that although some of my friends on Facebook have been friends for a long time and usually understand how Cajun Stitchery works, I am adding new friends everyday and they don’t.  So, I posted that since Cajun Stitchery does carry a resale certificate, I can get most anything you would want through wholesalers.  I just don’t have a store front outside of the internet and I don’t have room to maintain a large volume of stock since my studio is located in my home.

My friend who dropped by and eventually had me doubled up laughing about the Rule Man on Facebook works at a local hotel wholesaler.  We were discussing the possibility of Cajun Stitchery dealing with her for tablecloths, napkins, towels, aprons, etc., rather than my wholesaler who is located in California.  I will always try to use local companies first.  By using her company, I could avoid the shipping issue.  Alas, she cannot offer a better deal than my wholesaler offers for tablecloths and napkins.  If she could ever meet their prices, I would switch over immediately.

SALE (good through 9/15/11):  Round Tablecloth:  Whether it's a grand party or just a social with friend and family, our table covers will be perfect for your event. Old and unsightly tables will no longer be a problem with our table covers on top.

Each Measures: 90"
100% polyester. Stain & wrinkle resistant.
1 piece, seamless design
Edges are folded & then hemmed
Please note: High-quality material used, weight of this item is very heavy.

Colors:  white, ivory, black, eggplant, fuchsia, chocolate, navy blue, orange, red, royal blue, sage green, silver, turquoise, willow green, burgundy

$18.00 (normal retail price is $20.33) (price is without embroidery)

I am getting some of these tablecloths for my tables at the Arts & Wine Festival.  These tablecloths come in an assortment of sizes and colors – and prices.  This wholesaler also offers cloth napkins at very reasonable prices.  The napkins and tablecloths are made from polyester but this wholesaler also carries crinkle tablecloths, flocking tablecloths, spandex tablecloths, satin tablecloths, runners, charger plates, chair sashes, overlays, table skirts, napkin rings, satin napkins, and much more.

A black tablecloth with gold napkins would make a great looking buffet for a football gathering for Saints fans.  Choose the colors of your favorite team.  What about fall colors for Halloween or Thanksgiving?  Let’s not forget Christmas.  A beautiful red tablecloth with gold or green napkins with red embroidery would be stunning.

CHRISTMAS is around the corner.  Unbelievable, I know.  Get that Christmas shopping done now and enjoy the holidays.

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. 

Interesting article Taken from: July 30, 2005

Tay-Sachs, a rare -- and fatal -- degenerative disease, occurs disproportionately in Cajuns and Jews. "This is My Best," a new anthology heading to bookstores, includes pieces from a variety of contributors that they consider their best work. Contributions include poems, fiction, essays and journalism. And there's a very moving contribution inspired by Louisiana's Acadiana country.

Asked to nominate her most memorable work, New York science writer Laurie Garrett offered "A Hidden Killer in Cajun Country," an account of her visit to Acadiana to research Tay-Sachs, a rare degenerative disease that occurs disproportionately in Cajuns and Jews.

Garrett explores the genetic puzzle of why the fatal disorder would surface more frequently among such seemingly disparate ethnic groups. But she also writes movingly of the suffering endured by families faced with the disease.

The new publication of Garrett's story, which was first published in Newsday, a New York newspaper, should help throw a national spotlight on one of the more provocative specialties of science, Cajun genetics.

Friedreich's Ataxia, Usher's Syndrome

By useful circumstance, the subject also gets a prominent treatment in a recent issue of an LSU newsletter, LSU Today.

The newsletter profiles Mark Batzer, an LSU researcher who has been collaborating with other scientists for more than a decade to analyze Cajun genetics.

The research explores why some illnesses occur more heavily in Cajuns than in the general population.

Another researcher, Bronya Keats of the LSU Health Sciences Center in New Orleans, has explored why Friedreich's Ataxia, or FA, is found in one of about 20,000 Cajuns, a relatively high incidence. FA is a degenerative illness that typically leaves patients unable to walk.

Keats also has collaborated on research initiated by a colleague, Mary Kay Pelias, on the high incidence of Usher Syndrome in Cajuns. The illness can impair vision and hearing.

Beyond the Lab

Batzer said that his research has brought him and his colleagues beyond the lab and into area homes to examine family trees and health histories. "This is more than just scientific research," said Batzer. "This involves digging through records and going door to door for additional information."

Batzer said that good historical record-keeping within close-knit Cajun families and churches has greatly aided the research.

Ultimately, researchers hope to find clues that will help them in treating genetic disorders that have an abnormally high presence among Cajuns.

The research also has involved the Tulane Health Sciences Center in New Orleans. It's heartening to see this kind of cooperation between universities that historically have viewed themselves as rivals.

It's also encouraging to see research that might help families not far from campus. We wish LSU and Tulane luck with it.


The Ten Commandments in Cajun…

(Keeps it REAL Simple)

1. God is number one… and das’ All.

2. Don’t pray to nuttin’ or nobody… jus’ God.

3. Don’t cuss nobody… ‘specially da Good Lord.

4. When it be Sunday… pass yo’sef by God’s House.

5. Yo mama an’ yo daddy dun did it all… lissen to dem.

6. Killin’ duck an’ fish, das’ OK… people – No!

7. God done give you a wife… sleep wit’ jus’ her.

8. Don’t take nobody’s boat… or nuttin’ else.

9. Don’t go wantin’ somebody’s stuff.

10. Stop lyin’… yo tongue gonna fall out yo mouf!


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.