Monday, July 31, 2023

Your Garden ~ Recycling


    We  have to send a huge shot out to D6 for their innovative use of a container pod in the Walmart parking lot. The pod allows residents to recycle certain parts of their household trash, to be recreated into a new product.  Sulphur Springs has been missing this key part of sustainable life for years and with the help of D6, and partnered companies, together they are making strides to reduce waste in our landfills and help create a better future for generations to come.  

    The new recycling hub has eight options for people to select and separate their waste.  Which means a little bit of pre-work goes a long way into making it easy to reuse the products you, as a consumer, have already used.  The easiest items to recycle are the items with a 1 on the plastic.  This pod has two options for the 1 recycling to enter.  With the help of images and words consumers can easily separate their items for a faster process to recycle.  

    The pod also takes aluminum cans, pet food packaging, paper boxes (cereal boxes) and plastic bags.  With so many options avaible, and a little bit of help from consumers this program will make a huge impact on  how much waste is put back into the landfill.  On average a plastic bottle takes 450 years to breakdown.  Where as if you were to recycle that same bottle in less than 6 months it could be back into circulation and made into a new product.

    Where as aluminum cans take an average of 200-500 years to fully degrade in a landfill.  With over 80,000,000,000 soda cans used per year one community can make an impact on how many are removed from the landfill and dropped off at the recycling pod.  

    The pod is easy to use.  Each bin is labeled for what items can go into which doors.  Use your smart phone to scan the QR code to unlock the bins.  The doors will unlock for 20 seconds so that you can drop in your items.  If you separate them before drop off it will make it so much easier to distribute and finish up.  My kids even got in on the action and worked to make sure we did not drop items into the wrong bin. 

    Glass is one of the items missing from this recycle pod so be sure to leave that at home.  Hopefully one day they will find a company partner who can recycle glass and almost nothing will enter the landfill.  The pods are self contained with solar panels on top to run the locks and the doors are light weight so it makes it easier to open when you have your hands full with recyclables.  

    Grab your items and head on over to the Walmart parking lot.  The bin is located close to the Highway 11 entrance that is right behind the gas station.  Easy to spot and easy to use, we hope that members of this community band together and make use of this great option for local recycling in our community.  


Thursday, July 27, 2023

Herb Infused Cocktail ~ Raspberry Peach Lemonade


    August is right around the corner, and for the month of August we will be featuring a Raspberry Peach Lemonade at the Tipsy Oak Lounge as our cocktail of the month.  We wanted to harness  more summer flavors to help everyone get ready for the start of the school year and ready themselves for the fall.  Being able to pull out all the joy and fun from summer is what life is all about.  We want to help you make that happen by creating a simple and delicious drink to enjoy on those summer evenings.  

    A great part of this drink, is that if you have leftover Mint Simple syrup from last months cocktail, you can use it again here in this drink to add a little sweetness to the tart of the lemons.  Since mint is our herb once again, that just makes it even sweeter. 

    We did utilize frozen fruit for this drink since, ironically we did not see any peaches at the store, during the time and location in which we went.  Raspberries last a little longer in frozen form than fresh.  I would recommend using fresh when you can to really pull the flavor and natural sweetness from the fruit.  

Raspberry Peach Lemonade

1 full peach, cut into chunks

1/4 cup Raspberries

1 cup water

2 lemons, cut and squeezed

1 ounce Mint Simple syrup

1 1/2 ounces Rum

Blend up the fruit and water into a puree.  Muddle mint at the bottom of shaker cup.  Squeeze two lemons into the shaker cup.  Add simple syrup, fruit puree, and rum.  Shake until mixed well.  Pour into an ice filled glass and garnish.  You can go all out with peach slices, raspberry and mint, or keep it simple with just mint. 

    This makes for a refreshing summer drink for the whole family.  Make a big batch and leave out the rum to let the kids and those not drinking liquor to enjoy as well.  The perfect summer mocktail for all.  As always please drink responsibly and have a designated driver.  Until next month, Cheers from the Oaks bed and breakfast.  

Thursday, July 13, 2023

Let's Eat Food Trucks ~ Taqueria Cabrera



    This week my foodie kid and I stopped in at the last food truck located at The Rail Yard.  Taqueria Cabrera, for some tacos, a quesadilla and churros.  The Taqueria Cabrera food truck has been open for just over a year and started their adventure over at Joe's convivence store before moving into the Rail Yard.  

    She likes the Rail Yard because of the location and how it is a bigger draw for families and people who want to hang out while they eat and wait for their food to be prepared.  With different games to be played, kids don't get too crabby waiting for food.  


They are open Tuesday - Friday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.  Closed on Sunday and Monday to rest, rejuvenate and gather supplies for the coming week.  Much of the food they make is from family recipes and from a taco spot in Dallas.  The brought a little bit of the city to the country.  They are mostly cash only, but do accept Zelle and CashAp, so bring those bills when you go to eat.  

    We ordered barbacoa, birria and asada tacos, along with a cheese quesadilla to try out.  At one point I tried their loaded nachos without meat as well, which were very similar to what you would order at a sporting event.  Each of the tacos was served with diced onions, cilantro and lime.  It's a must to add those items to your taco to be able to experience the full effect of the taco.  The Birria taco came with a sauce as well, which was pretty big and seemed a little much for one taco.  Maybe be sure to order a few, to make use of the sauce, or maybe we needed to have consumer instructions on that one.  

    They also offered us salsa to go with our food.  Of course we said yes and enjoyed both the green and the red sauce.  The red is spicy, which she told us of before we ate some.  Other wise we felt they both had a little kick and not much else.  The green sauce was a little creamier than the red sauce, and you could mostly just taste the heat.  

    The cheese quesadilla would have been even better with a little bit of Pico made into the middle of the quesadilla, but whatever left over onions, cilantro and lime he had from his tacos I scooped up with my bite of quesadilla.  

    Don't forget to order dessert.  The churros were hot and tasty.  Filled with a cinnamon sauce in the center, and the prefect doughy consistency to hit the spot for something a little sweet after your meal.  Be sure to stop by the Rail Yard and check out the blue truck by Taqueria Cabrera.  

Monday, July 3, 2023

Travel East Texas ~ Ham Orchards


    Ham Orchard has been operating in Terrell, Texas since 1979.  Located at 11939 County Road 309, Terrell, TX and open Monday - Saturday, from 9-5 p. m., from Mid May to Mid August.  We stopped by to purchase all things Peach.  We enjoyed peach soft served ice cream, fresh peaches and pulled pork with a peach glaze.  Ham Orchard has a beautiful farm stand that has all the summer, farm goodies you could think of.  

    From canned veggies to fresh veggies, there is something there for everyone one.  We brought home some fresh peaches that were melt in your mouth goodness, as well as some peach cinnamon rolls for breakfast in the morning.  You can also pick up a variety of baked goods and preserves. 

    Our peaches were barely made it home, before being devoured by all the kids.  The juicy sweetness of the peaches were just melt in your mouth goodness, you hated to see it end once you made it to the pit. All of our peaches were orange fleshed, instead of white and had that just picked flavor.

    All most all of the kids in our group enjoyed fresh peach or strawberry flavored soft served ice cream.  You could defiantly taste the fresh fruit made into each lick of the cone.  You could even swirl the two flavors together to get the best of both worlds. 


    After we perused the store, we made our way back outside to enjoy from fresh, cooked bar-b-que.  Since Peach is King, we had at least one order of Peach Pulled Pork.  Ribs and chicken were also a hit with our group.  Although my foodie kid was not the biggest fan of the peach pulled pork, and would have rather had general pulled pork, we made note of that for the future.  

    The only thing that might have made the trip even better would have been a pick your own variety of visit.  The kids would have had a blast selecting their own peaches from the trees.  Hopefully we can make it to the pick your own farm closer to home.  

    On the way back we did stop and visit with the Transformer protector, Bumblebee.  A life size replica is standing tall at a local gas station waiting for your stop and a photo or two.  If you happen to be a Geocacher, there is a cache located here as well as at the Orchard.  Enjoy the adventure to Ham Orchard and Bumblebee.