Home » Family » Arkansas Story: Painting Is Easier Than Baking

Arkansas Story: Painting Is Easier Than Baking

Hey Guys. I’ve been in Arkansas at my parent’s home for the past 10 days. That’s why you haven’t heard much from me.

Another Arkansas story and the cows

I planned a seven day visit that has been extended indefinitely. My Dad is sick and as you know he takes care of my Mom who has Alzheimer’s. He’s pretty sick so I’m hangin’ out here.



Instead of sharing an update on Mom and Dad I’m going to talk about my attempts to bake in my parent’s kitchen . That sounds real exciting doesn’t it.

Arkansas Story bird house

You see I’ve always thought I was good at cooking and baking and reading recipes and general kitchen stuff but apparently not.

Ford Tractor

My Dad loves peanut butter cookies and I made them for him a lot when I was growing up. I decided a few months ago to bake him some cookies. I found a recipe, started mixing the ingredients, and was fine until I got to the vanilla flavoring.


Now I don’t know about you guys but I don’t get out a teaspoon and measure the flavoring. I just pour a little in the bowl. I grabbed the vanilla flavoring and poured it into the batter. I noticed right away that something was wrong. The color was off. I looked at the bottle only to find that it was red food coloring. I started yelling and saying not nice things. Why do they put food coloring in bottles that look like vanilla flavoring bottles…and why is it on the front of the shelf when it probably hasn’t been used in years?

After all the drama I added the vanilla flavoring and the cookies were just fine except for the color. They weren’t red, more muddy pinkish-brown.

yellow chippy paint

On one visit my sister wanted to make a yummy, gooey, chocolate sheet cake. We found a recipe and went to work. Everything was fine until time to make the icing. It was the kind that you cook on the stove for a while.

One of the ingredients was condensed milk. When I read “condensed milk” I automatically think of sweetened condensed milk. So that’s what went in the recipe. Turns out it should have been “condensed milk” which I know as “Pet Milk” or evaporated milk. Needless to say the icing was grainy and the cake was not very good.


Another of Dad’s favorite foods is Banana Cake…the kind my grandmother made. I shared the cake recipe with you a  couple of months ago. Who knew I’ve been measuring the Cool Whip wrong all along…not me. I’ve made 4 of those cakes now.

Did you know that 8 ounces of Cool Whip is three cups? I thought one cup of anything equaled 8 ounces but I guess that’s liquid measurements. I made the Banana Cake yesterday and for the first time realized I’ve been short on the Cool Whip. The icing tasted much better with the additional two cups of Cool Whip.

signs of Spring

Are you getting tired of the “I Screwed Up The Recipe” stories? I’m sorry…..one more.

tree buds

Have you heard of a Millionaire Pie? Boy are they good. I made one this week that took two days and turned into two pies. Sounds about right for me doesn’t it.

Forsythia bush

On second thought I think I’ll end the recipe stories for now. Your welcome. I’ll tell you about the Millionaire Pie another time.

rotton tree trunk

I hope you enjoyed the pictures. I took a little time Saturday to get outside and take photos. Hope you enjoyed them.

I finished a furniture project before I left home and I’ll share it Thursday on the second installment of Furniture Fixer Uppers.

Please send good thoughts our way and say a few prayers if you have time. If you missed the Banana Cake Recipe just click here….. Favorite Banana Cake.

To read the next story in the Arkansas / Alzheimer’s series just click here..What The Heck Is A Millionaire Pie?

If you want to read the Arkansas/Alzheimer’s Stories from the beginning start by clicking here…Arkansas Stories

Thanks for always being here.

Author: Kathy Owen
Kathy Owen is the founder of the home decor blog Petticoat Junktion where she shares tutorials on painting furniture and upcycling thrifty finds into unique home décor. Her DIY projects have been featured on the Home Depot Blog, Plaid Crafts, Behr Designer Series, and in numerous magazines. Kathy’s newest website is HappyHomeDIY.com

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


  1. I enjoyed reading your comment Nicole. At least I’m not the only one who has cooking issues!

  2. I’m so sorry your family has so much to deal with right now. Your baking stories are funny, I can totally imagine all that happening to me. I had no idea that 8 oz is different measurements for liquid and solids. I always thought a cup was a cup, too. LOL At least you can’t go wrong with too much Cool Whip!
    I hope your dad gets to feeling better soon. Thanks for linking up with us at the #HomeMattersParty – be sure to link up again on Friday!

  3. Sending prayers for your dad’s recovery. Enjoyed your baking stories; as I now know I’m not the only one.
    Lovey photos too.

  4. Prayers for all that you are doing. I know all too well it isn’t easy.
    Many blessings from S.C.

  5. Praying for all of your family Kathy. I seemed to find myself a little more frazzled when taking care of my mom with Alzheimer’s so be kind to yourself about the baking. Lovely photos, glad you got to be outside and get refreshed. Hope your dad is on the mend. Denise

  6. Kathy, my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. I love your blog and like that you share your family stories.

  7. I’m praying for your dad to get well quick. I know he’s so happy that you have extended your stay.

  8. The pictures are beautiful. You have a great eye! I didn’t mind one bit reading about your kitchen blunders. Makes me feel not so alone in this Betty Crocker-Martha Stewart world we live in lol! Thanks for sharing. I’m very sorry to hear about your Dad. I know it’s hard on you too. I am praying for all of you ???

  9. You will always have good memories of the time you spent with your family. Prayers for your mom and dad.

  10. Prayers for your family! Glad you are getting to spend time with them. Enjoyed your stories and pics!!!

  11. Dear Kathy, Prayed for you and your family this morning. I’m at the same age with some of the same challenges with relatives so you’re not alone girlfriend. Humor and beauty are wonderful stress relievers so keep it up and I will continue to pray, God bless.

  12. Good thoughts and prayers to all of you. Loved your cooking stories! Can’t wait to see what you did to the millionaire’s pie!

  13. Oh no Kathy, not your Dad! I’m so sorry to hear this – my gosh he’s been your Mom’s rock. You must be feeling so stressed. You are all in my thoughts and prayers. Make sure to take more of these glorious walks to recharge your batteries – the photos are beautiful! Sending hugs your way. xo

  14. Well….you just gotta say you were trying to make Valentine’s Peanut Butter Cookies! 🙂 I think we’ve all made these type of boo-boos. They don’t seem too funny at the time. Hope your dad improves soon — I’m sure he’d rather be helping out your mom than being stuck in the La-Z-Boy. God bless him.

  15. Great story, but so sorry to hear about your dad. I hope he comes through it okay. Take care

  16. Sending prayers for your Dad’s speedy recovery. Families are a precious thing and you are blessed to be able to be there for your parents.

  17. Prayers for your family from New Mexico. Your parents are blessed to have you there! What a lovely place!

  18. Sending prayers and hugs. Please take good care of yourself, too!
    Thank you for the banana cake recipe. I didn’t save it the first time!

  19. Sorry hear about your dad being sick – wishing him a speedy recovery. Your recipe snafus are funny – we’ve had moments like that. Enjoy the rest of your trip!


  20. Prayers for you and your family Kathy. I hope everyone is feeling much better soon. Sending big hugs and much love!

  21. Prayers to you as you help dad heal. I went thru something similar. Thank goodness I am retired and have an understanding husband.

  22. I’ll keep you all in my thoughts. It’s great that you can stay with them while your Dad recouperates. I’m sure they both feel a sense of relief that you’re there for them. Good karma. And I agree w Michelle, you take a great picture. The cool old truck, bird feeder and is that a woodpecker hole in the tree? Loved your baking stories too. Sending you all love from Pennsylvania.❤

  23. Sending prayers your way for your father’s health to return. Thank you for sharing your photos. I really enjoyed the unique glimpses of farm life and the whispers of spring.