Whose that crazy Chicken Lady?

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Thank you for stopping in! I am Christian married to Mr. Awesome, who is my Helpmeet and cheerleader. We are a blended family of 5 kiddos and 2 beautiful Grandbabies! I am Domestic Abuse survivor/DV Advocate, Lyme Disease Warrior, avid crafter, blogger, vlogging, budding Herbalist,Birth Junkie, growing our own food, lover of dusty treasures and all around goofball.

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Friday, November 9, 2012

Sustaining your family

An amazing news on the status of many friends right now is a foreboding or feeling of impending incident that is on the horizon. Some could be the after effects of disappointment on politics not going as planned but what if it's more?

In many of the blogs, messages and even on Pinterest I have seen a surge in prepping or become self sufficient. This is a topic that I have been interested in for sometime, which in some respects has kept me quiet about the subject due to opinions of others that I could be a religious nut (which to some level I am), in a cult, radical or militant (No gun hoarding here!).

So where do I fall? I believe in preparing for the uncertainty of the times we are living in. Whether it be from crazy storms or economy collapse or a future war (Oversea or on our soil). I see no reason that one shouldn't know simple ways to get along if the power goes out for the weekend or longer.

I have wrote on Preparedness in older posts, check out my Labels!

Where do you start?

The easy stuff-
Candles/Lantern
Matches
Flashlights
Extra batteries
Spare clothes
Easy to prepare food
Battery operated Radio/Hand crank NOAA Radio
Hand crank for cell phone
Blankets
Child needs
Womanly needs
Water
Gas/Kerosene/Lamp Oil
Generator
First aid kit
Can opener

The longer the outage or problem on top of the above items you may want to add other things.

Check out your local library/thrift/antique shop for books on:
Homesteading
Living off the grid
Prepping
Herbs/gardening
Canning
Farming
Small scale/backyard farming
Blogs
Pinterest- OH MY GOSH SUPER ADDICTING. Watch for the time warp. I swear I lose hours drooling over the ideas that I will never do. BIG CHEESY GRIN!

Call local Extension Center, State Park, Boy/Girl scout (kids) for information outdoor skills, canning or survival. Don't break the bank these things! Start small! Buy a few extra canned goods or dry goods a week if you can swing it. Start canning all year around when produce/meat is on sale. Look to yard sales, rummage sale/thrift/antique stores to find things you needs. Freecycle.org is great to find things and to also get rid of the clutter in your home.

I can't see paying hundreds or thousands of dollars on some of these homesteading/survival seminars. Educate yourself. There are a ton of blogs on these subjects! Network in your area with like-minded folks. Be safe and keep aware of local and world wide events once in a while.

Now as long as it's not zombies we are all good! Joke around here. My biggest fear, besides my ex, is zombies...

God bless!

Mel

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Back in the saddle again!

Boy oh boy! I have felt so BLAH for so long it's pitiful! Now I run between this blog, my hopewhentherewasnone blog, littlecriesandlullabiesdoula and redrumhotel blog. And I have been neglecting everything lately. No excuse really. Just have not felt like doing much of anything.

But I have made Rose water (which I forgot to put in the fridge and it molded DUH!), Oil of: Oregano, Rose, Lavender, Orange, Lemon, Cinnamon. Also, Coop refresher (Lavender/Peppermint), and 6 Quart jars of Apple Cider Vinegar. I also canned several things over the summer!

I did propagate my African Violet and made 3 little plants a few months ago! YIPPEE!

Call it a pity party for me, but sheesh already, I'm tired of feeling tired!

So! Today I-

1) Surfed the web- a horrible habit and my addiction to Pinterest is way too crazy!
2) SSSHHHH!- I wrapped a few gifts I have been collecting here and there.
3) Went outdoors to muck out the chicken coop... and checked on the new meat and 2 hens also the eggs I have incubating (my last batch was sad and out of 9 only 2 hatched but died SAD FACE!) Cleaned they're cage too!
4) Checked on the new additions to our bunny hutch! Jess's bunny birthed 2 little one's yesterday.
5) Started domestic stuff- Laundry, dishes
6) Started dinner- Chicken chili and Cream of Potato soup (Panera copy cat)













7) Broke open my Sewing machine and repurposed 3 T-shirts into bags, repurposed a kitchen towel into an apron for Mini Man and made a bread bag. Now I'm itching to do more! I see an Owl of some sort in my future!




















I feel more accomplished today. A few projects out of the way.
Planning on a few more smaller ones perhaps tomorrow.
Keep your fingers crossed!







Monday, October 1, 2012

Beating your children...

First thing first, October is Domestic Abuse Awareness month! No one is immune to the effects of this devastating time.

Abuse does not discriminate. It can strike Men, Women, Old, Young, Black, White, Catholic, Baptist, Wealthy... you get the picture.

Whatever the excuse is that the victims use to rationalize or minimize the abuse, no one deserves it! There is nothing "You did" to "Make" the person do it to you! Despite, the constant reminders you may get from your abuser. It's not you! Triggers to cause your abuser to flip his/her lid can be substance related, money, mental/emotional or maybe there is no reason.


Of course these are excuses used to harm you! So, he/she only does this to you, right?

What about your child(ren) or pet? Do you believe they are immune? Guess what! In many cases your abuser doesn't care. They may abuse your child privately or just be bold enough to do it in front of you. Perhaps making you participate! Headlines splashed across the world tells of horrific and tragic abuse of all sorts happening to children and animals by the hundreds.

In many cases both parents (Boy/Girl friend or Step parent) are charged with heinous crimes against the smallest victims that can't defend themselves. I've read many stories that point the finger at the other person that was abusive and they "Made them" act against the child or pet. Or there is some fear that they would be harmed so they let it happen.

I sit in awe, tears and a deep sadness that anyone would want to harm these little ones. That persons given a gift of life can take it savagely slowly over years or in a blink of an eye. For what?! The child won't stop crying? The bed is wet? The child is interrupting they're game or fun?

Countless couple's are wishing for a child of their own. And yet, we have dumpster babies and abused children that would flourish in a loving household.

There was a time when my Dad worked in a E. R. and he would tell me of stories about children brought in with cigarette burns, 2nd or 3rd degree burns on various parts of the body due to his/her parent and or molested. He was deeply effected by these children. And he didn't understand how someone could do something so heinous to a child.

I was abused as a young child by my Stepfather, Mark. He would beat on my Mom but as soon as she fought back he stopped. But he needed to redirect his anger somewhere else. So, while Mom was at work he turned to me... I didn't understand how in a split second we could be having a fun time and the next he was beating the crap out of me for no reason or for spilling milk.

Fast forward, I'm in an abusive situation with my ex-husband. I knew something was wrong each time I came in the house after I had been gone for awhile. The kids and my ex looked staged, stiff and tense. He had no qualms about going after the kids while I was home, which many times I would jump in or fight him to stop doing so.

The children would say there was no problems.
Dad was fine.
He was cool.

I knew in my heart it wasn't right. I know I can't take back that time. I know I am responsible in some part for staying. For believing my ex when he said I wouldn't be able to live without him. That I was worthless. That I would end up as a whore because no one would want me.  And no one would take care of me the way he did. (How warped is that?!) I'm slowly finding out how mean he was to the kids while I was out of the house or even in another room! I feel horrible about this!

I could tell you I slipped back into another bad abusive relationship. I could tell you I took up partying, drinking and a string of boyfriends. But I didn't. I was lucky! There are many women that get caught up in never changing they're circumstances. They are forever on a Merry-go-round of useless or abusive men that end up beating their kids.

I've already told my husband, Terry, that if he lays a hand on the kids we are over. Trust me, my 14 year old is a lot like her Dad, Rob and she can really push Terry's buttons!

Learning my new husband is not my ex is another experience. I have learn not to compare the two of them. They aren't anything alike! We are not without issues but there is no fear of him coming home. He doesn't stalk me. He doesn't call me dozens of time in the day. He doesn't accuse me of fooling around. He doesn't time me when I'm on errands. The list goes on and on...

If you know someone in an abusive situation or that might be, please support them, listen to them and get them help if they are ready. Let your child know about Teen stalking and abuse. Educate! Break the Silence! And listen to your gut about a situation or person.

Stay safe!

BIG HUGS!
Mel

Friday, March 30, 2012

BUNNIES!

We were recently blessed to have a new member of the household. Her name is Frufee, once a preggers Momma, she is now the proud Momma to 3 adorable bunnies! She had 4 but the little one didn't' make it. SAD FACE!

I'm so proud of Jessica! She is taking such good care of them. Oh, I still have to ride her a bit to clean the cage, but she doesn't bat an eye. YEA! They are a week old now and they have fuzz all over. Momma is a Lionhead Angora. Beautiful! Thanks to Angel for the pleasure of having the experience of raising Rabbits!

Now for your viewing pleasure!




I was going to do Beekeeping but now I'm not so sure. I missed the first Beekeeping group meeting that was last Saturday. We had issues with the supervised visit and ended up in the ER for Jess having a panic attack. Long story check out www.hopewhentherewasnone.blogspot.com for that one!

The apple trees are blooming! The Magnolia looked lovely and there is many other wonderful plants and flowers coming up. SWOON! Lots of work to do in the yard. I love it!d

Almost forgot here is Momma bunny!




Antiquing in Downstate Indiana!

I headed back up North after a short visit from my Bestie. I wish the visit could have been longer but I'm sure I will see him soon. On the way down to Indy I saw a billboard for Countryside Antique Mall in Thorntown, IN.

WAHOO!

A nice way to stretch out my legs and flex my bum (sorry to be graphic). This place was very cool! More antique things here then Beanie Babies or other random new collectibles. I was not disappointed! I felt bad that I didn't bring my good camera and I didn't take enough pictures.

So many lovely things! If you are ever traveling down 65 South/65 North and pass by Rte 52, stop by you won't be disappointed! There was a bunch of Carnival glass, antique/vintage books, lovely prim's... I was in Heaven.

Countryside Antique Mall
 4889 U.S. 52, Thorntown, IN
(765) 436-7200
Love this cabinet! It was a 3 piece item. LOVE!


This Guardian Angel picture was so adorable! 


I don't know why this box tickled me. Perhaps because of the thrills that it boasts. 
I've never had thrilling sweets myself. LOL!



To dang adorable child's cabinet! Looked like original glass and the applique 
on the bottom were still pretty decent. CUTE! 



I couldn't resist this little ensemble  below the cabinet above. The baby booties and the planter were so adorable! The baby bracelet in the lower corner was precious! 


This is a floral picture done with Ribbons! The picture does not do it justice. The colors were either faded from age or perhaps it was just the pale colors used but it spoke to me!
 

I'm not usually a Doll person but these 2 were lovely. I can imagine some little girl playing with them. Hosting a tea party or dancing with them. My girls were never into dolls so I sort of missed that phase.
 

This little display was a reminder for me that Easter is around the corner! 
Love the shabbiness and wear in these! 


Saw this on my way out! HAHAHA!
 

Most enjoyable time. I took about a half hour to cruise on in and out. Mainly because Mini Man was less then thrilled at how much time I was taking looking around. I also had the stroller which is HUGE, so I couldn't maneuver as freely as I wanted to. I still had a nice look...

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Prayers

I had a radical thought today on my way to Women's Bible study...

Well, actually, it was more of me rambling my mouth off my prayers to God. I couldn't help but turn my thoughts to Him and to what are His needs? Is he sad or upset at the state of His children? Being a parent myself, I often feel frustrated, upset and worried about what my children are doing. There is a great need to check on them when they are quiet... You know they are up to something!

God wants us to give Him praises and glory, why not prayers? I told God I would pray for him. I'm sure he is besides himself with wondering what to do about us down here. We have the Word of God at our fingertips in many cases and yet we blow it off. Some don't believe in God. In many countries people are now dying for the belief that God is out there. Here I am in the safe confines of my home, able to worship God, pray for him and others, and there are so many in this world that can not do this...

Don't wait for a catastrophe to hit your life, don't wait for rock bottom or during your last breathe to pray or to get to church. Pray for God. He has a tough job! Some Moms have Twins, Triplets or more. God has millions, upon millions of children that are lost or unbelieving. As a parent wouldn't that rip your heart out?

Monday, February 6, 2012

Seedlings, puppy attack and apple pie in an apple!

My seedlings are doing very well! My Turnips and several other things are looking just dandy! I had taken to do a few science experiments with the bottom of lettuce, celery, and green onions with wonderful results!





I went out earlier this week to stake out my veggie garden with mediocre results due to a surprise attack of the puppies! I had my favorite tape measure in hand and dropped it to grab a stick to mark my lines. One of the dogs thought it was a new toy and she ran with it. Of course her sister wanted to play too, so off I was chasing the two girls! I finally retrieved my tape measure, when I noticed my right glove was left where I was working... You guessed it! It didn't go unnoticed by my furry pals and away I went again to grab my glove. After a vigorous workout of running after the pups. I was back on track... By then Terry arrived to see me looking rather frazzled and not much work done. He just laughed when I shared the adventure time that was had. With his help and the dogs inside we were able to get the job done. I hope to have my herb garden mapped out soon too!

Over the course of the last few weeks, I believe I have successfully made some type of new meal or dessert at least twice a week! I am very pleased and feel that there is still some tweaking to be done on many of the new menu items. I made Calzone's and they were such a hit we have had them the last two pizza nights! Super simple and I will have to post the recipe another time.

I had a hankering for apple pie a few days back and recalled this adorable looking apple pie baked in an apple! Yes, the apple!







 UH-OH!
 Looks pitiful and I ended up cutting through this one...






 My helper!

 Done!
After some searching on the web I found it! And tried it! I won't be doing these again any time soon. As cute as they were, the work involved was a bit much. I could have made 2 whole apple pies by the time I got the 4 apples cored and scooped out. I managed to break my melon baller as I started on apple two, so I improvised with a spoon... Definitely not a great substitute! But I was determined to make my pie and eat it too! The results were nummy!

Find it here-

http://domesticdilettante.com/2012/01/11/applepie/

Step 1: Cut off the top of 4 apples off and discard. Remove the inside of each apple with a spoon or melon baller very carefully, as to not puncture the peel.
If you’re a skilled interior apple excavator, salvage as much as you can so you can use it for Step 2.  I, on the other hand, am not skilled so I just had to throw my interior apples away and chop up additional apples for filling.
This recipe will make 4 baked apple pies (in the apple).
Step 2: Remove skin from remaining apple(s) and slice very thinly. These apple pieces will give you the additional filling needed to fill the four apples you are baking.
Mix sliced apples with sugars and cinnamon in a bowl. If you prefer more or less cinnamon make adjustments as desired. Same goes for the sugar.
Scoop sliced apples into hollow apples.
Step 3: Roll out pie crust and slice into 1/4 inch strips.  You can also add a strip of pastry inside the top of the apple almost like a liner to add a little more texture/sweetness to the pie.
Cover the top of the apple in a lattice pattern with pie crust strips.
Step 4: Place apples in an 8×8 pan.  Add just enough water to the cover the bottom of the pan.
Cover with foil and bake for 20-25 minutes.
Remove foil and bake for an additional 20 minutes or until crust is golden brown and sliced apples are soft.
 
How neat does that look? The entire thing is edible and best served with ice cream if you ask me.  Enjoy!

But again I don't think I will do these again soon. For now I will stick to my tried and true apple pie... Of course those apple pies on a stick do look adorable...

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Pinterest

Facebook? What's that?
Stumbleupon? Who?

I have a confession I am totally addicted. I need a fix daily of pins! I adore pinterest with all of it's lovely pictures, blogs, crafts and ideas!

I manage to get lost on here for hours! I search for so many random things that I feel so energized and excited to try or do new things! Such as, a pin I found to continue to grow green onions or Mouthwatering Sunday buns, or for the information on vinegar. Oh,my! I'm all twitterpatted just thinking about logging back on!

My mind is a whirl of things I want to try, can't believe I didn't think of and day dreams of what could be.

Oh pinterest you wicked site! Stealing my time away with the lure of luscious goodies, fit women, fun crafts and far away places!

What's that? I hear someone calling me... It's pinterest awaiting for my return! SQUEAL! I have have farm porn (not what you think!) to look at and garden journal ideas to pin! I'm coming my sweet...

You can find me there! Melinda Campos See ya soon!

Friday, January 27, 2012

What are your dreams?

I had a lovely visit with a neighbor from our old neighborhood stop in to visit us yesterday. She brought us lunch, which could feed an army and left overs are plenty! YUM!

We got to talking about life and situations.

Which of course had me thinking about my own decisions. I shared with her a bit about my own life and how I couldn't see staying in a marriage where my love and joy was gone. I had been beaten down physically, emotionally and mentally. I couldn't remember a real happy time between us. Oh, there were moments of bliss but they became far and few between. When they happened I languished in the thought that maybe my husband had changed or that it was a turning point.

They were always short lived.

A few events occurred and the thought that "This was it? Lord there has to be more! There has to be some happiness for us (the kids and I)." I made a choice after much thought and talking with my family and a few friends. So I left... Still not the easiest decision I made, but it was the best one for me, for the kids and my sanity.

This is honestly the best time of my life (short of being at home with Mom and Dad).

I feel free!

I have traveled more then ever!

I can share my thoughts and dreams with my partner openly.

I laugh more now.

Oh, I could go on and on! I found an email from Na-Da Farm Life which reminded me of some sage advice I had gotten from a friend, Kristy Robinett (www.tangledwishes.com). She is a life coach as well as a great listener! As a Survivor of Domestic Abuse we related to one another quickly and she inspired me in more ways then one. You can find many youtube videos from her about Vision Boards and other cool videos.

Here is a snippet of the email from Na-Da Farm Life:
Dreams are essential to a happy life........

I'm not telling you to go and forget your obligations...believe me when I tell you that my first priority is my vocation as wife...then mother.

but that doesn't make me stop dreaming

who doesn't like that exhilarating feeling of a new idea!! or reading something and saying almost out loud "yes!! I want to do that!!!" 

being a dreamer doesn't mean you have your head in the clouds with  your rose colored glasses on...

No one can escape the hardships of life........no one

but why do you see some people succeed? and you don't??
why is it that you work so hard and then your efforts don't get noticed??? 

First of all know this......
every single thing you do effects others

If you have to lock yourself in your room with that bar of sea-salted chocolate and warm cup of milk at night so you can read your new Joel Salatin book to escape the stress of the day...you are effecting others

When you pick your elderly neighbors apples and share your making of homemade jelly and delicious pie...you are effecting others

As you sit here are read this and wonder what you can do to help others while pursuing your dreams...you are effecting others

Here's a start:
  1. Get a piece of paper (or print out what I have below)
  2. Write down one dream you have always wanted to do
  3. Look at what you wrote
  4. Study what you wrote
  5. Say what you wrote out loud
  6. Start telling other people your dream
  7. Stop any negativity that comes into your thoughts in doubt pursuing that dream
Every action you perform is working toward that dream.

The people who achieve their dreams do not talk negatively or sarcastic, and ruin everyone else's lives in the process...think of what your priorities are, make sure you are fulfilling those...but do not forget your dream.

I may not be an Environmental Scientist like I thought or am a Sierra Club guide in the mountains, but my dream of changing the world is happening....with every word....every thought....every action I do.

here's something for you to print out and use in your pursuit of your dream:

Instead of guiding others in the mountains, I guide at least six others daily to acheive their dreams too

and as far as my husband?? ..he still has dreams...big dreams actually

but together, we are helping persue one another's dreams

peace + blessings,

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Ramblings and late recipes

I posted a few weeks ago about my misadventures learning to cook from scratch and kind of blew off posting the recipes...


Sorry!

Fresh Tomato sauce

4 lbs of ripe fresh tomatoes
1/4 cup olive oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped or 1 small onion chopped
2 sprigs fresh sweet basil chopped
Salt and Pepper to taste

Cut tomatoes into small wedges and cook in stainless steel or enamel pan for 10 mins over medium fire until tomatoes are soft (I scored the bottoms to make the skin easier to come off). Cool and rub through a strainer. Brown garlic in hot oil until golden brown. And add tomato puree and seasonings. Cook uncovered until thick about 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally. Enough for 1 lb of pasta. Serves 6.

I had much left over! I think it came out a little too salty for my taste. I also like a sweeter sauce but the gang seemed to like it. I had dried basil and did add an onion for good measure. It went well as our pizza sauce as well! Pretty easy peasy. The hardest part was that I don't have a metal colander anymore. I have one of those fold-able plastic ones. And I did break out our smoothie maker, I don't have a blender, pitiful I know but it did the job!

A few days back I was puzzled at what to do with my spinach, cherry tomatoes, green peppers and pineapple and I found this on here: http://www.yummly.com/recipe/Stir_fry-Spinach-Salad-Allrecipes
I will definitely go back to this website!


Stir-Fry Spinach Salad
Ingredients         Serves 6 servings            
8 ozs pineapple chunks
1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast halves (julienned)
2 tbsps cooking oil
1 green pepper (julienned)
3 tbsps brown sugar
1 tbsp cornstarch            
14 cup ketchup
3 tbsps soy sauce
6 cups spinach (torn fresh)
1 cup cherry tomato (halves)
Drain pineapple, reserving 3 tablespoons juice in a small bowl; set pineapple aside. (Discard remaining juice or save for another use.)
 In a skillet or wok, stir-fry chicken in oil for 5 minutes or until no longer pink. Add green pepper; stir-fry for 2-4 minutes or until crisp-tender.
Meanwhile, add brown sugar and cornstarch to pineapple juice; mix well. Stir in ketchup, vinegar and soy sauce until smooth; add to skillet and cook until thickened.
On a large serving platter, arrange spinach, pineapple and tomatoes. Top with chicken and green pepper; serve immediately.

IT WAS SUPER YUMMY! I wish I took a picture! Oh my goodness! The girls are picky and sadly didn't want to try it, but Terry and I made much it all gone... 

Then I was on the search for the recipe for those wonderful Biscoff cookies. I figure it may take me a bit to find a good recipe and sadly the first one I tried is not quite them. BUT! They are still good!
 http://www.cupcakeproject.com/2010/07/biscoff-cookies-from-scratch-recipe.html
 
The Biscoff Cookie Recipe
Here is my reprinted version of Matzo & Rice's Biscoff (speculoos) cookie recipe with a few notes.  The only change I made was to omit sprinkling sugar on top of the cookies.  I didn't think that was necessary.
  • 2 C all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/4 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 C unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 C sugar
  • 1/4 C firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F.
  2. In a medium-sized bowl, mix together flour, spices (cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, allspice, and cloves), baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
  3. In a separate large bowl, cream together butter, sugar, and brown sugar with an electric mixer on low speed. Mix in the vanilla extract.
  4. Gradually blend the flour mixture into the butter mixture until it is well combined.
  5. Roll out dough to 1/4 inch thickness. From here, you can either bake it as a large sheet of cookies to cut later, or, you can use cookie cutters to make cookie shapes. (I used my awesome Williams-Sonoma cookie cutters!  I had a bit of trouble rolling the dough and found that if I chilled it for a bit, rolling was easier.)
  6. If you choose to bake it as a large sheet, bake for 20-25 minutes. Cut out cookies to shape as desired.
  7. If you choose to bake it as shapes, place dough shapes onto parchment paper and bake for 12-15 minutes.
  8. Cool on cooling rack before serving. These are best once they have cooled.

BISCOFF COOKIES OR LOTUS SPEDULOOS
(Belgian cookies)

2 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups (packed) dark brown sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 large egg

Combine flour, spices, baking powder, and salt in medium bowl; set aside.

Using electric mixer, beat brown sugar and butter in large bowl until light.Add egg and beat until fluffy. Gradually add dry ingredients and beat just until combined. Divide dough in half. Flatten each half into rectangle. Wrap with plastic; chill 1 hour.

WHEN READY TO BAKE:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly butter 2 large baking sheets.

Remove one dough piece from the refrigerator and roll on lightly floured work surface to 13x9-inch rectangle. Trim edges to form 12x8-inch rectangle. Cut into 24 (4x1-inch) rectangles. Lightly press miniature cookie cutter into each rectangle to make imprints (do not cut through dough). Arrange cookies on prepared baking sheets, spacing 1 inch apart.

Bake until edges begin to darken, about 8 minutes. Transfer cookies to rack and cool. Repeat with remaining dough piece.

Gotta run have visitors!