make your own yellow cake mix

Pin It Have you ever been happily making a yummy thing, and get half way into it when you realize you don’t have one of the ingredients? This happened to the Damsel yesterday, when she attempted to make pumpkin pie squares. The recipe called for a yellow cake mix, and the pantry had no such thing ....more

giveaway winner

Pin It says the winner is Muum! Congratulations. Please email your shipping address to mhovley at gmail dot com and the Damsel will be happy to send you a little SUDDEN DARKNESS ....more


Pin It Yay! Something wonderful happened at the Cottage by the Mountains. You may know that the Damsel also writes fiction ....more

make your own spray starch

If you’ve never had the luxury of sleeping on a ironed and lightly starched pillowcase, please proceed to the ironing board. Maybe it’s not for every day, but this is one of life’s little pleasures that Grandma knew all about–and we’ve forgotten. Try it once, and see if you don’t agree ....more

soft boiled eggs, perfect

Have you enjoyed the deliciousness of soft boiled eggs lately? The Damsel fears cooking them is becoming a lost art, and that’s what the Old School is all about. Soft but firm whites ....more

measuring honey

Honey. An old-fashioned and yummy ingredient if there ever was one. If you have to measure honey for a recipe, do you draw a deep sigh? ...more

testing your garden’s soil acidity

At the Cottage by the Mountains, it’s finally spring, and the garden planting has commenced: peas, beans, beets, spinach, chard, and onions are currently underway. Various squash and pumpkin starts are next up to move outdoors, and last fall’s garlic planting is looking great. Here we go! Garden experts say that plants grow best in a neutral pH environment…not too acidy, not to alkaline. 6 or 7 on the pH scale is good. So now that many of us are ...more

be prepared

The Damsel found this prepping matrix exhaustive and fascinating. What do you think? A link to a .pdf version is below the image. ...more

How to Speed Clean the Kitchen–guest post

From time to time, the Damsel receives requests to guest post at the Old School. Substitute teaching, so to speak. She must admit that most of the requests don’t fit in with the curriculum and she sadly has to take a pass. However, this one caught her eye. Could it be because the photo features a MAN cleaning? ...more