Monday, October 22, 2007

Sippin’ and Signin’ with Santa’s Old Broads

On Saturday, October 20th my husband, Mick and I went to a Sippin’ and Signin’ hosted by Santa’s Old Broads.

Santa’s Old Broads are a great bunch of women who work tirelessly all year round raising money to help disadvantaged children have a great Christmas.

In order to raise money, they have written and self published three cookbooks:
Doing It... in the kitchen, volumes one and two, and the kitchen. They also have a new book scheduled to appear in the fall of 2008 entitled, Doing It...around the world.

In the Old Broads own words their cookbooks are, "Like us, just a little risqué and funny. These books require a sense of humor. If you find you are getting offended by the works of a bunch of ladies in their 50’s to 80’s, you might be a little square to begin with. It’s all about having fun and helping to make a brighter Christmas for the children."

The Old Broads are certainly doing that, to date they have helped over 500 children.
What’s more their books have sold in every state in America, and they have even shipped some overseas to England, Australia, and France. And, every penny of the proceeds from these sales and other fund raising events goes to help children in need in at Christmas.

Every child they help is outfitted from top to toe in quality, name brand clothing, and each receives a toy or gift from their own wish list. Moreover, the kids never know where the gifts came from because Santa’s Old Broads work in total anonymity.

I would like to say a great big thank you to everyone who has supported Santa’s Old Broads by buying their cookbooks. If you haven’t already bought one, do so today – in fact buy all three – and bring a smile to a child’s face this Christmas.

For more information and to buy books check out the Old Broad’s web site at:

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

On a lighter note

I went to the Grand Wine Country Fall Festival on Saturday, October 13, the wine flowed, there were lots of tasty munchables, as well as a grape stomping contest, and arts and craft stalls. Music at the event was provided by Olivia Duhon and the University of Tulsa Jazz Trio. A good time was had by all.

The event was very timely as I had just written an article about Oklahoma wine for Oklahoma Living Magazine. The article featured one of the wineries present at the festival, Summerside Vineyards and Winery,
To read the full article visit:

Also represented at the festival were:
Oak Hills Winery & Vineyard, Chelsea, Oklahoma.
Cabin Creek Vineyard & Winery, Big Cabin, Oklahoma.
Coyote Run, Winery & Vineyard, Adair, Oklahoma.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Just one of those weeks

My oven door shattered, and my computer was ill.

I had just got this blog up and running when my computer decided to have a nervous breakdown ― the upshot was she had to spend 5 days in hospital. To make matters worse, that was the very week I had to come up with story ideas for Oklahoma Living Magazine’s 2008 editorial calendar. Anyway, I just scraped in by the skin of my teeth, thanks to my friendly, neighborhood computer psychoanalyst.

But that’s only the half of it. I am presently in dispute with GE, the electric appliance people. Three weeks ago, for no apparent reason, the internal glass in my oven shattered, and neither the oven nor the hob was in use at the time. In fact, it hadn’t been in use all summer as my husband and I prefer outdoor grilling when the weather’s hot. This range is only 14 months old, and of course, the warranty had run out 2 months previously.

I spoke to a customer service rep. who offered a replacement part, but was quick to point out that the expense of installation was my responsibility. Not good enough! As far as I’m concerned this is a major defect on a relatively new appliance.

I wrote to the company’s Customer Relations Manager, who obviously wants to have no relations with his customers, as two weeks later I still haven’t received a response. I am now trying another avenue of complaint; I will let you know how I get on.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Janet Brett
Who Needs U

When I first moved to America from England, it never crossed my mind that there would be a language barrier, after all, we all speak English, right? Wrong! Although Californians always remarked, "I just love your accent," few of them actually understood a word I said. Anyone brave enough to venture an opinion as to where I was from generally thought, Australian, (as in, you speak English, but not as we know it). Or, the alternative, "Scotch," (I was always sorely tempted to be pedantic and explain that scotch was a drink, not a nationality). But I should also point out that in those early days, I would have been hard pressed to recognize many of the different American accents

Actually, I hale from the north of England, and have an accent that any self respecting Londoner would describe as pure "hicksville," but which, for some reason, Americans seem to think is "posh." Of course, they don’t actually use that expression, more something along the lines of, I "speak correctly." It is my belief that they are of this opinion because I pronounce T’s as T’s and not D’s as is the American way.

I encountered similar problems when I began writing for an American audience, particularly with the differences in spellings between English English and American English.

I should add a proviso here; it is not my intention to deride the American version of English, because believe me, the English, myself included, do an excellent job of murdering our language without any help from anyone else.

Over here there is a definite aversion to the letter U, hence neighbour becomes neighbor, labour becomes labor, (even now my spellchecker is having a thrombosis), and the word queue becomes line. Now, why Americans chose to dispense with the letter U, I have no idea, perhaps they just considered it superfluous. But it can be a bit of a nuisance when playing scrabble, it’s difficult enough getting rid of those pesky U’s as it is.

Language, however, is always in a state of flux. Take the zed, (an American friend once asked me to spell zed, I replied Zed, E, D, of course), or zee, for example. At home, I have an old copy of the Concise Oxford Dictionary, in it words such as realize, analyze, and theorize are all spelt with a Z, as they are today in the U.S. In a modern English dictionary the Z has been replaced by an S. I have no idea when or why this occurred, but it is natural for me to use S.

So, you see what I’m up against? And this is just the tip of the iceberg, there are also subtle differences in grammar and punctuation, as well as expressions and turns of phrase that have no comparison here. I could go on, and on, but I won’t, I think I’ve bored you enough for one day. Have a great week.