Sunday, April 7, 2024

The Episode Where Ornery Owl Eats Crow


Image by Dede from Pixabay
Creepy Crow
"Don't even think about it, ya bat-faced buzzard, or I'll peck yer eyes out!"

Calm down, Creepy. It's just an expression! It means I made a bit of a gaffe. Last week, I posted my criticisms of the Air Up water bottle without giving it a fair shake. Now, I'm here to give a more balanced review.

I mentioned that I had trouble getting the bottle to make bubbles when drinking, which is one of its key features. In order to do this, you need to make sure the plastic scent circle is pulled up. This somehow engages the bubbles. Otherwise, you're just drinking straight water without the fun effervescence. 

I've had the bottle for a week now, and it is helping me drink more water. This doesn't mean it's perfect, and I will honestly reveal the downsides. However, I like it well enough that I can suggest giving it a try with caveats.

The pros:

It does encourage me to drink more water.

I find the scent circle pleasant enough. It distracts from the fact that the water in my neck of the woods isn't the greatest. It helps me not miss the lemon tea-flavored, aspartame-sweetened powder I was stirring into my water, which made it more palatable but seemed to be giving me gallstones, which is mucho no bueno.

The cons:

As water bottles go, the Air Up is very expensive. There's no doubt that you can find cheaper water bottles.

Some people say they feel the scented plastic circles smell nasty. I don't think they do, but everyone is different. Do they make my water taste like actual peach tea or cherry cola or whatever? No, but I find them pleasant. 

So there you have it! I encourage you to do your research and draw your own conclusions. The Air Up isn't a perfect product, and some of you might hate it. Others of you may be like me and find that it's beneficial enough to offset the admissibly high cost.

~Ornery Owl Has Spoken~

Image by TAMGRA from Pixabay

When not enjoying bubbly water from a bottle with a fruit-scented disc, Ornery Owl drinks coffee. Check out Coffee Brand Coffee for a great cup of coffee or hot cocoa without any crazy gimmicks!

Sunday, March 31, 2024

The Episode Where Ornery Owl 🦉 Buys An Overpriced Water 💧 Bottle

The question on everyone's mind (probably mostly mine) is:
Why the hell did you buy this overpriced water bottle, Ornery?

Well, Owlets, it's a little bit something like this.

The water here in Good Ole Grover isn't the best. I had been adding a tablespoon of Lipton sugar-free lemon tea powder to my water bottle to make for a better drinking experience. The problem is, that stuff is sweetened with aspartame, which seemed to be forming gallstones. I had pains in my upper right quadrant. This indicates possible gallbladder problems. When I stopped drinking the powdered tea, the pains stopped.

I was watching a podcast in which the host touted the glories of the Air Up, and I thought I'd try it because I miss my tea powder. 

Because I'll never try to capitalize by promoting products I won't recommend, I'm not giving you a referral link. Air Up is an overpriced water bottle with a smelly circle. 

The Air Up is supposed to trick your brain into thinking you're drinking a tasty beverage by creating an effervescent stream of bubbles when you sip. You smell the circle, drink the water, and then believe you're drinking soda, sparkling juice, or bubbly tea.

Some users think the scent circle smells bad. I don't think it smells bad, but it's way overpriced for what it delivers. I have trouble making the straw produce bubbles. 

I paid close to sixty dollars for the water bottle and a variety of smelly circles. 

I don't recommend this product. It's not worth the cost. 

~Ornery Owl Has Delivered the Verdict~

Image by Thomas from Pixabay

The Three Pirateers deliver radio the way it should be, with a little banter and a lot of music. 

Sunday, January 21, 2024

Breakfast at the Grover Hotel: Easy Oatmeal Muffins #1


These hearty muffins are easy to make, inexpensive, and contain less sugar than store-bought muffins. 

Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Blend together dry ingredients.

2 1/2 cups Bisquick
1 tsp allspice
1 1/2 cups oatmeal (I used quick cooking oatmeal)

In a separate bowl, blend together wet ingredients and sugar.

1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 cup melted butter or margarine
2 cups buttermilk

If you don't have buttermilk (it's strangely difficult to find buttermilk where I live) add a little vinegar or lemon juice to regular milk. 

In a large bowl, mix the wet and dry ingredients until well blended. 

Fill muffin cups 2/3 full.

Bake for 20 minutes.

Makes approximately 3 dozen muffins.

I adapted this recipe from the Amish bran muffin recipe in the Dining On a Dime 20th Anniversary cookbook because I always have a lot of quick-cooking oatmeal on hand. 

Here is the original recipe.

5 cups all purpose four
5 tsp. baking soda
2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. allspice
3 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 cup oil
2 tsp. vanilla
4 cups buttermilk
1 (20 oz.) box raisin bran fakes

Preheat oven to 375°. Mix all of the ingredients together. The batter will be lumpy. Fill muffin cups ⅔ full and bake 20 minutes. The batter can be kept refrigerated for up to 6 weeks. Makes 30-35 muffins. 

You can purchase Dining On a Dime cookbooks here:

These are my most-used cookbooks. They are filled with frugal recipes and helpful tips for stretching your budget. 

I will receive a small commission for any products purchased through the above link.

I use silicone baking cups for my muffins and cupcakes. They are durable, inexpensive, and reusable. 

I will receive a small commission for any products purchased through the above link.

You'll get the best price on Bisquick at Costco, but if you don't have a Costco membership or a Costco near you, this Costco-size box from Amazon is only a couple dollars more and you get the convenience of having it delivered to you. 

Bisquick isn't just for making biscuits. It's extremely versatile. I've found that I can swap a couple cups of Bisquick for the dry ingredients in a cake, cookie, or muffin recipe and it turns out quite nicely.

I haven't bought oatmeal in literal years because they always include it in the food bank box. Plain oatmeal tends to be pretty cheap. I've provided a link for an inexpensive option in case you need it. I will earn a small commission for anything ordered through this link.

I hope you enjoy making and eating this simple and hearty treat! Until next time!

Image by Colleen ODell from Pixabay
Ornery "Muffin" Owl

Cactus Clem
Free use image from Open Clipart Vectors

"Y'all might wanna be careful walkin' around in that getup, Ornery. Hangry might mistake ya fer a muffin and gobble ya right down!"

Hangry Wyrm
Free use image from Clkr Free Vector Images

"Watch yourself, Cactus. I've heard your kind is good eatin'."

Ghost Town Grover
Free use image from Clker Free Vector Images

"Am I the only one that's gonna stick to the topic of this here post? These muffins are dang good! I think I'm gonna have me another one!"

Sunday, January 7, 2024

Sunday Dinner at the Grover Hotel: Lazy Chocolate Orange Cannoli Cake


You can read the original not-so-lazy version of the recipe here.

However, if you're short on time and just want a really good, moist chocolate cake with a little something extra, follow my version.

Beat together these wet ingredients:

1/3 cup melted butter or vegetable oil

3 eggs

1/3 cup orange juice

1 tablespoon vanilla

1 cup ricotta cheese (While not exactly the same, cottage cheese can be substituted for ricotta.)

You could also add a tablespoon of brewed coffee. I left it out because my son doesn't like coffee.

Once these ingredients are well-blended, add in a box of devil's food cake mix. Blend well. Fold in 1/2 cup of chocolate chips. 

Bake in a 350 degree oven for 25-30 minutes.

Cool the cake and frost or don't. 


Free use image from Open Clipart Vectors
Ornery Owl
"I'm going to have to start making my own cake mix base. The price of basic cake mixes is going up like everything else these days. You'd think they were including gold flakes!"

Free use image from Open Clipart Vectors
Cactus Clem
"Ornery was kinda irritated with me when I drank the first batch of wet ingredients. They was kinda lackin' something until I added a bottle of Cuzzin Hildy-Bob and Virgil-Joe's corn squeezins."

Free use image from Clkr Free Vector Images
Ghost Town Grover
"I tried ter tell Clem he oughta wait and make himself a cake milkshake, but he just couldn't hold off. Ya need to be quicker on the draw with the cake mix next time, Ornery!"

Free use image from Clker Free Vector Images
Hangry Wyrm
"Who needs frosting? This cake is dang good! More please!"