Sunday, December 29, 2013

Christmas for all the grown women out there.

A mid-week holiday was so incredibly rude of the baby jeezus.  So I've still been celebrating through this past weekend and probably for another two weeks if I'm being honest.  Just gonna slowly close those curtains so my neighbors don't see my tree lights and keep on reading your holiday posts and pinning stuff for next year.  

I may even do some more crafts if I get a wild hair.  2014 will start off with a bang.  

Of glitter and yarn.

While I'm attempting to craft and binge watching old episodes of Buffy, here's a dump of what Christmas at the Ranch looked like this year.

There was a lot of twine and fuzzy things, just sayin.

And things that RAWR.

My local nursery.

Pretty much what my coffee table looks like all the time.  Open chocolate, tea, snakes and random shiny things.

For anyone who's wondering, Charlemagne could care less about the tree.  She has plenty outside that are much more exciting because critters live in them.  This one is only home to sparkle and pointy things.

Exhibit A:

Faux bois forever.

RED faux bois with gold coin bow.  This present was a square bellydancer.  It was my favorite.

There is never a rhyme or reason to mantle decoration - I just try to throw as much shit on there as humanly possible.  More is more for the holidays.  

Also, my life.

Forget crafting pom poms, Pinterest.  I found this great yarn at a junk store which I can't wait to use next year.  Or make a toy for Charlemagne.

Just kidding, she's too cool for toys.

I don't know what's going on here but it feels festive over on the sideboard.  I'm pretending that old cowboy is like a country Santa during the Great Depression and all the shit in front was collected from a cool person's trash pile.  It works in my head.

 I did manage to see a few lights this year which is my favorite thing to do.  The tackier the better.  These were from the Enchanted Garden at Rock City for you local people.  

Last year I made sriracha salt for gift and that went over really well so I kept with the spicy theme and made sriracha chex mix.  I know we're supposed to hate sriracha because it's too trendy but this is a small town and people still don't know how to pronounce it so I'm considered a gourmet chef.  I'll never do anything to jeopardize such a status.  Next year everyone's getting kale and they'll love it.

Also made some bacon jam since it was a hit earlier this year.  Meat paste is always a good gift.

A lot more people got meat paste this year because I had to scale back some of my holiday plans.  In mid December my car decided it needed several thousand dollars worth of repairs so there went your Christmas present.  If you were expecting a gift but didn't receive it I probably had to return it so I could get my vehicle back.  I'm sure you understand.

But all was soon forgotten because BEYONCE. 

Fuck Dean Martin.  This is the only shit playing in my house this year.  What was holiday decorating just became a shrine and I'm totally okay with that.

Beyonce, Her Holiness of Glitter and Fatties, is of course my true shining star for the holiday season (and life) but shit got real this month.  Like, I cried. 

And then saw this moment and lost my damn mind.  

Now I do this every morning:

I spent my entire Christmas break reading black feminists and that was the best gift I could have gotten.  If you don't get it or understand why there's a fuss maybe start here.  Shout out to my girls @SoRefined and Fit and Feminist for being my support group during this glorious time.

Santa Claus who?  

Hope you had a holiday filled with as much joy as Beyonce has while dancing on a beach.

See y'all in 2014.  The year in which I take my cult Beyonce love to dangerous new heights.

And maybe even more dinosaurs.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Glittermas from the ModernSauce Ranch!

Hope you are all having a holiday filled with pie and presents!  Since Christmas is being an asshole this year and falling on a Wednesday I'm celebrating through the weekend [read: I'll still be drooling over Christmas pins on Pinterest for at least another 5 days].

I've got more holiday pics of the MS Ranch in a few days so if you're not ready to let go of the season you've come to the right place.

And yes I drew this card - like every year - and yes lots of my family people do not understand why there's a dinosaur on there but I really don't have time to explain this shit.  They should be thankful that I didn't go with my original idea and draw a baby T-Rex IN the manger with Charlemagne as Mary.  They would've called 911 and had an army of Baptists sent directly to my door.

Instead, they get C-Rex.

(Which they also didn't understand because I signed the card 'C-Rex' for Charlemagne and they were so confused.)

(Thanks for getting me, internet strangers.)

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Straight from the ModSauce secret underground laboratory: the best natural body scrub on the internet!

Alert the Pinterest Gawddesses on high because I have an epic project that will make you squee your panties something fierce.  And I invented it.  Completely.  I probably shouldn't even be telling you this and instead be busy jarring this stuff to sell at the local market where I'll be making jizzillions of dollars in a few weeks time.

Magic is in this lowly IKEA jar, y'all.
Last Fall several things happened in a perfect storm of unfortunate events that led me to create such a masterpiece.  

#1: I was eating a LOT of salsa.  I mean, ALOT LOT.  Several jars a week were disappearing due to my apparent undiagnosed lycopene deficiency.  My recycling pile was getting embarrassing and loud with so many glass jars that looked like a perfect size for something if only I could figure out what...

#2 Apparently lycopene does nothing for your skin because I'm a big scaly mess of lizard skin every winter.  Thanks, turning 30.

#3: I was (am currently and always will be) poor.  Probably from buying so much salsa.  I was also out of my favorite $45 salt scrub to help with scaly lizard skin.  I say 'favorite' like it's something I bought all the time when really it happened once and it lasted me over a year because I was too scared to even use it because it was so amazing.

So cue cartoonish light bulb moment of me standing over my recycle bin with scaly elbows hugging a tiny container with the dregs of a fantastic body scrub...


Cast of Saucy Characters (or in this case, Salty Characters) *wink*

Now, I know you're thinking that there are already a shit ton of recipes for body scrubs on Pinterest so why is mine so amazing?  Other than the fact that I made it, the secret ingredient is vegetable glycerine.  Now all my secrets are out!  You can quit reading.  

Just kidding.

Don't do like those other recipes and create a shower of impending death by using slippery oil like olive or almond or whatever.  Yeah, it takes away the lizard skin but the reason my $45 a tub scrub was so amazing was because it was non-greasy and washed away clean from the tub.  So I put my powers of deductive reasoning hat on and read the fucking ingredients on the back of the container.

You can buy a gallon of vegetable glycerin on Amazon for $45.  That's right, a gallon.  Hear that overpriced scrub?!  You'll be set for life with a gallon.  (Or buy a smaller one if you're a scared punk ass.)  I actually got my gallon half price at my local vitamin shop because someone special ordered it then forgot to pick it up.  Your loss, sucka.

I have heard some people are allergic to vegetable glycerin or it breaks them out so try a small bottle first.  Coconut oil will sometimes make me break out but this won't so... experiment

Next up: salt.  The SURPRISE ingredient in salt scrub.  

I guess you can use regular table salt but in trying to be as economical as possible I bought some in bulk.

I already used up the 5 lb bag...
My local Asian market had plenty of bulk sea salt options at dirt cheap prices - I think this was $2.  I'm not sure what a person needs with this much salt but I think I've seen a fish baked in salt before so that?  I probably wouldn't recommend using used fish salt in your scrub unless you want your cat to get real friendly with you.

Even this fine sea salt was a bit larger than particles in my fancy salt scrub and still kinda course for my delicate angel skin so I had to do some salt research.  I now have a PhD in internet salting.  Dr. Salt to you.  (Dr. Salt is the Jekyll to my Madame Sunday.  Or is it the other way around...?  Fuck literature, I'm about salt and smooth skin now.)

Anyway, I learned that popcorn and nut salt is the finest of salts.  You're welcome.

I could only find it at Amazon and it's definitely more expensive than salt from the Asian market.  Feel free to use whatever kind of salt your delicate angel skin can handle.  If you want all popcorn salt then more power to you, fancy rich person.  You're one step up from fish head salt but still a thousand times cheaper than that fancy tub of expensive perfumed salt.

The last item in this very complicated scavenger hunt of a list is smell good things.

Photo from here but go to town at Amazon or Whole Foods, yo.
This part is up to you because this is America and we believe in freedom here.  Freedom and cheap bulk Asian salt.  Hell, you don't even really need a scent but let's not get too crazy here.

I originally used my favorite holiday scent of orange and clove and now have bottles that I have to use up so I'll be using that scent FOREVER.  I think I'm the only person who likes this combo as a body product so sorry to everyone that I gave these to as Christmas presents, birthday presents, graduation presents, sorry you're having some really bad PMS presents, congratulations you got sexted real good presents, etc.

Another option is to use those perfume oils from head shops which I totally wear a lot instead of regular spray perfume so don't judge.  Your salt scrub can smell like Buddha's Everlasting Rainstorm of Patchouli if you are so inclined because I incline.  I incline so hard for Buddha.

That's the long version of my salt scrub journey.  The short version is this:

Most Amazingest Non Greasy Salt Scrub Recipe For Angel Butt Smooth Skin On The Cheap:

2.5 cups of salt (I use 1 cup of popcorn salt, 1.5 cups of fine sea salt.  I have a lot of sea salt to use up...)

1 cup of vegetable glycerin (make it easy - use the same dry measuring cup)

4-5 drops of orange oil

barely 1 drop of clove oil if you dare

Um... stir that shit together. DONE.

Maybe I'll throw in some vanilla next time...

You know the drill - rub it all over your sexy bod-ay  and dry skin before you get wet in the shower.  

Disclaimer: One, I repeat ONE, grain of salt can do serious damage to a nipple if you aren't paying attention so maybe not scrub while you are practicing Work, Bitch dance movies.

Some settling will occur in the jar because of, you know, gravity.  Just think of it as natural peanut butter.  If some salt settles in the crack of your ass, that's on you, friend, not physics.

So all of this fits EXACTLY in a salsa jar because my life just works out nicely like that.  However, I probably would avoid the salsa jar because the enamel outdoor spray paint I used for the lids still scraped off where you tighten the lid after a few uses.  It's not a perfect seal either as we learned Christmas morning on the couch...  probably my weak biceps were the real problem.

Fortunately, it also EXACTLY fits into a 16ish oz jar of any kind - I've been using the Korken from IKE-Rah because it's cheap and has a real seal.  You Pinterest mason jar enthusiasts are foaming at the mouth just begging for a reason to use a jar anyway so that'd work too.

If you're loving the way of the DIY master, I would highly recommend After Plumcake's instructions for a body butter made of raw shea butter or cocoa butter.  I'm addicted to shea butter but don't really have time to chisel that out every morning - this recipe makes it smooth and whipped and delightful.

Sorry if this is too late for THIS Christmas but I've been too busy caressing my salt-smoothed skin.  I feel like a salty earth maiden... maybe I'll bathe in mud next.

Stay tuned for special mud bath fizzies next time!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Simmer down, architects. It's just Jesus' birthday.

This week is all about DIY here at the Ranch so get your glue guns cocked and your glitter bombs ready to deploy, motherfuckers!  Just kidding, that sounds dangerous and we keep things totally safe and kid-friendly around here.

If your kids are over 40 and might have served time in a federal penitentiary.

So to satisfy your criminal family members' insatiable bloodlust for architecture and sugar crafts, check out these modern gingerbread houses that will surely make them squee!

all images via Present and Correct
 I know I did.

Awww... I love all you psychotic detail-oriented freaks who have the time for this.  You make the world a better, more angular place.

So much good in this one.  I think those gumdrops are probably a new kind of solar dome that harnesses the power of the sun and hugs to warm the house and our hearts.


You slay me, butterfly roof.  You slay straight into my heart with your sharp angles and gravity-defying cantilevers of delight.

Love the front and back of this beauty with its vertical blinds (?) and swag roof trim.  

Would kill for a porte cochere that looked like that.  My old porte cochere (ok it was a carport) was enclosed sometime in the late 60's judging by the paneling and is my dumping ground/room of shame.  I spent this Sunday cleaning it from top to bottom with my gay husband until I blew black grime from my nose.

Think I'd rather give back the square feet to have a LifeSaver wall instead... 


A place this cute probably has no 'room of shame.'

Is it weird that I somehow think these are real houses with tiny rooms inside of them and possibly little gingerbread people wearing nerdy glasses and carrying moleskin notebooks living inside...?

If I see anyone - full size human or tiny gingerbread fictional person - carrying a moleskin I will burn their house down.

I might snack on one of those houses first but I'll let you figure out which one...

This one is pretty much what I want my dream beach house to look (and taste) like.  I LOVE a tropical Christmas.  Not more than a trailer park Christmas but close.  

If there was a trailer park Christmas ON a beach then spank my ass and take me straight to Jesus cause there ain't no livin' left in me.   

But maybe when I'm not styaing in the beach trailer park with your former convict family members, I'd like to visit my true favorite is the VitraHaus - both the candy version and the real version.   I can't LIVE there per se but maybe I could be a stowaway there in a closet or something and come out at night for frolicking and wonderment.

If I was a good blogger I'd probably ask us all to make some modern gingerbread buildings of our own but I'm lazy and want to shop on Amazon some more.  Feel free to be inspired and then send me your results. 

For me to eat.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Hanna and Carrie Underwood in a battle to the death...

I know y'all are in the holiday spirit after seeing Carrie Underwood awkwardly yodel vomit in a flat Southern accent all over your tv screen but I need some additional help.  It was 71 degrees here today and Santa may have to deliver gifts Pecos Bill style because this shit ain't natural.

In the spirit of the poor abused children of the Von Trapp family, here are a few of my favorite winter things.  That is, in addition to the obvious things like Cyber Monday shopping while sitting in a bathtub of eggnog of course.
This year I'm feeling like I want to trade in my 10,000 watt sparkle for a more subdued Nordic craftsmaiden-look that's made of snow and sweaters and fur muffs

Like Hanna except if she was really into yarn crafts instead of shooting guns.  

I'm becoming increasingly obsessed with winter white and I give no fucks.  It's like having Charlemagne on every surface and ain't nothing wrong with that.



Where I sit while I whittle your Christmas dildos.  

I want to live here then remember my cartoon face and clown body would be positively grotesque in such a frosty wonderland of subtlety.  But a clown cartoon can still dream...

*stares wistfully out window longing to be a Norwegian ice princess*


It's like a winter wonderland in my heart right now...

This tree has so much restraint that it's physical painful for me.


Damn, I just want to chop wood and knit a giant blanket to cover the entire gayborhood and forage in the woods for gift toppers.  

I've had a genius idea this year:  I love Christmas crafting but ran out of time to do anything because time goes faster in 2013.  SO I'm going to craft all kinds of goodies and then pack them away for NEXT YEAR!  Then when I open up my Christmas boxes next year it's like actual Christmas presents!  Because they'll be new... and the things...  with the shiny...

Shit, I don't have a lot of exciting things going on in my life for this holiday so crafting for the future is pretty much it.

BUT I'm pretty excited about my wrapping sooo... there's that to save me from abject misery!  All my wrapping is grey and white and beige this year.  Possibly a little red if I feel like whoring it up for baby Jeezus.  I have a hard time with restraint thing as we've talked about.

Even J. Crew is agreeing with my color palette.  This lady will probably fit entirely under my tree.  Or I can have her hand out your perfectly wrapped holiday dildos.  

Probably the best thing I've ever seen.  I'm gonna have my J. Crew model go create this in my backyard.  She'll be fine.  It's 70 here, remember?

Is that a tiny adorable paper tree?!  Welp, can't wait to find that next year while unpacking my Christmas goodies.

I see your wrapping game is on point this year.  I will not fail you, friends and family and other people I don't really care about but still want to impress with my wrapping 

Shut up, you know you're making that this weekend.  

I think this is the longest post in history but I got really excited about foggy pine trees and snowy rooftops and sweet Maddie.  Charlemagne gets cranky when I try to swathe her in greenery so I gotta get my fix on the internet.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have a bathtub to fill with eggnog and an Amazon cart that won't fill itself.