<![CDATA[>>>>>• PICKLE CREEK RANCH •<<<<< - Blog]]>Sat, 18 Nov 2017 19:00:06 -0800Weebly<![CDATA[The North Sulphur River]]>Mon, 21 Aug 2017 01:08:13 GMThttp://picklecreekranch.com/blog/the-north-sulphur-riverThe North Sulphur River
by Cheryl L. McClure
I love nature!! Ever since I was a kid and growing up with three older brothers, I would be exposed to the outdoors. We grew up in Irving and there was a creek behind the house, which back then had lots of opportunity to find fossils! Fast forward to now, and I am well, what they call “mature” I guess. Let’s just say I am no spring chicken!!  We live near the North Sulphur River,  which is in Fannin County, Texas. This particular part of the river is slated to become Lake Ralph Hall one day and before that happens, there are a lot of people fossil hunting while they can!

I’ve written a bit about the river in Rainwater at the Ranch, because at Pickle Creek Ranch, the creek that flows across our property is part of Pickle Creek, which dumps into the North Sulphur River. What would we do without rain and water? And without rain, and erosion in this area, how would we be able to find fossils here?

For those contemplating going into the North Sulphur River to hunt for fossils, I’d like to share some photos and a couple of tips for you. I love to explore and it’s nice to know ahead of time, what to expect. I call the North Sulphur River my happy place. Jan Paul does too! It is so peaceful and relaxing to walk the river. We like to pick up rocks and fossils for our garden and when we do find a special fossil it gets a more prominent place at home.  
Where to go
First of all, there are several places on the river to gain access, but mind you, this is about a 70 foot descent and not all areas are easily accessible. You can look for creeks under bridges and so forth, but some are going to be fenced off as landowners may not want people wandering across their property. 

So for those avid fossil hunters, and those who have families that want to enjoy the outdoors, the best access is on HWY 34 at Ladonia Fossil Park just North of Ladonia, Texas. There is a sign out by the road and if you use Google maps you can find it easily. There are no restroom facilities at the park unless we are having Fossil Day, and this year, 2017, it will be on Saturday, October 14. Be sure and watch for notices on Facebook @ Ladonia Chamber of Commerce and @ Dallas Paleontology.
Weather is well, you know how it is in Texas. We have had sun, rain, snow and tornados all in the same week!! Be mindful of the weather! Check the forecast before you go and note that if it is raining west of the river it is possible that excess water will run off into the river. There have been instances where someone was in the river and almost did not make it out before flash floods did exactly that. Flood. This river can rise in a matter of minutes and if you are not near an exit point, it could prove to be disastrous. The link that can help determine a general forecast is on a specific page at weather.gov. Note the area they are pinpointing though is closer to Cooper than Hwy 34. Use your best judgement. Better safe than sorry. 
When visiting the North Sulphur River, keep in mind it is inhabited by others!! When you are out in the country like this, there are a lot of forms of wildlife such as deer, hogs, bobcats, coyote, skunks, armadillo, snakes, spiders, creepy crawly things and on a rare occasion, further east, the alligator! Be aware of your surroundings and be prepared in the event you spot a critter in the river. We have not had any issues but if we see something, we don't exactly go up to it and say hello, unless of course, it says hello to us first. And then we walk away!
Especially if it is hot, be sure and carry water. We take a backpack with water, sunscreen, lip balm, and Peppermint essential oil (this is good to have when it is very hot. I use it on the back of my neck and inhale it when needed.) Take light snacks and wear a hat! That sun can cook you like a fried egg!

Along with a backpack, I bring a bag to carry rocks in - those tyvek grocery bags work perfect and I also carry one of those weed poker tools. You know, it’s straight and has two points on the end. Jan Paul walks with a long handled garden fork so he can lift pieces in the river. I wear gloves to get in and out of the river too. I don’t like to grab trees or rocks or anything without gloves. 

On this particular day we went into the river (not on Hwy 34) where it was not so easy but we made our way in and our way out very slowly. Be careful wherever you go because the terrain may be unstable and you need to have good shoes for sure footing. If it has been raining you may want to wear mud boots. Keep in mind that if it has been raining, and there is a lot of clay, it will be slippery.
No Cell Service
It’s important to know that there is no cell service in the river. The signals don’t go there!! So don’t go alone! Well, I only advise against it because if you slip or get hurt there is no one there to help you. That’s my two cents. At any rate, you can go with your phone anyway, so you will have it to take pictures but carry it in a waterproof container to keep it from getting wet. 

Thanks for taking the time to read about our happy place. 

Happy Fossil Hunting!
Cheryl @ Pickle Creek Ranch

Young Living Independent Distributor #1176855

Fossils are a unique art form themselves, so I designed a tote bag!
Fossils photographed are from the North Sulphur River.
#fossilart #fossilhunting #northsulphurriver #nsr #ladonia #fannincounty #texas #water #river #familytime
<![CDATA[Traveling with Essential Oils]]>Sun, 16 Jul 2017 22:58:05 GMThttp://picklecreekranch.com/blog/traveling-with-essential-oilsTraveling with Essential Oils
​by Cheryl L. McClure
Do you travel much? I don’t very often, but I learned a valuable lesson this time!

Recently I took a trip to Utah and I experienced a drastic change in climate that affected me in ways I had not expected. Salt Lake City is a beautiful place to visit and my friend and I rode the TRAX rail system, each day to get to the convention center from our hotel. We arrived Tuesday afternoon and by Thursday afternoon my face was red, my sinuses inflamed. I felt as though I was going down, like the Titanic, feeling miserable, I could hardly breathe through my nose. It was simply a case of my body reacting to the climate differences. From humid Texas to dry Utah!!
Now, this guy was on the capitol lawn and he had it going on!!

Here’s a concept - listening to your body. Do you listen to yours? Especially, when you are rocking along in life and something changes in it, do you recognize the differences?

Well, here is what I did: I scavenged some salt from the restaurant and a straw to make a flush for my sinuses that evening. It felt soothing when the salt water poured over the inside of my sinus cavity. I was still pretty sore and did not feel good, but, luckily I had thrown my bottle of Inner Defense in the bag when I was packing! 

Did you know that Inner Defense basically contains Thieves in a gelcap? Per the YL website, it “reinforces systemic defenses, creates unfriendly terrain for yeast/fungus, promotes healthy respiratory function”. Just what I needed to fight back. I began taking dosages that night when I got back to the hotel. The instructions say “Take 1 capsule daily in a.m. or take 1 capsule 3-5 times daily when stressed.” 

I was desperate and wanted to make sure I could go to the farm the next day, so I took additional doses during the middle of the night as I was not sleeping well and kept thinking, I want to go to the farm tomorrow!!!!  I didn’t go way overboard but realizing that the way oils need to be reapplied for effectiveness, I thought this would increase my chances of fighting off the reaction.
By the time we went to breakfast I was better, well enough to walk to the TRAX and get on the shuttles to the Young Living farm in Mona! And feeling well enough that I was able to enjoy the rest of the trip with my friend and traveling partner, Debby! We are standing in front of a field of Goldenrod.

The Basics

Some basics to travel with are my must haves!! I take my little pouch with the 2DM oil bottles, Deep Relief, Stress Away, Thieves Hand Sanitizer and Thieves Spray!! And some other oils too. Peppermint is a favorite and I carry a 5ML bottle with me all the time - no matter where I go! I will never go without the Inner Defense again and OmegaGize and Multigreens are also on my list to take.

Among other new additions, we had a new Mineral Sunscreen Lotion unveiled at convention and I purchased it the day before. I used the sunscreen and we were out in the sun all day long. I had no redness or burning!! Our sunscreen uses naturally derived plant and mineral based ingredients and does not use parabens or synthetics. Woo Hoo!! Another good healthy product to pack in the bag when I go to the beach!

So, all in all, listening to my body enabled me to take action and support my immune system, preventing “it” from causing me issues while I was away from home! Isn’t that what healthy living is all about? This type of scenario is an “everyday” thing. It’s not a chronic condition and I am not suggesting to diagnose, treat or cure a disease. Be sure and consult your doctor when you have serious issues. But on the other days, when you have some kind of “thing” going on and your body is talking to you, try some of the tools we have. The oils and supplements can make such a big difference. 

Happy Oiling!
Cheryl @ Pickle Creek Ranch


There's no place like home!
<![CDATA[An Ounce of Prevention...]]>Sun, 16 Jul 2017 21:56:06 GMThttp://picklecreekranch.com/blog/an-ounce-of-preventionAn Ounce of Prevention...
by Cheryl L. McClure
You have probably heard this phrase all your life, and it’s true!! An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure! And now is a good time to ditch and switch out those toxic chemicals. Why keep them around if you have a safer, effective alternative to choose that will be healthy for you and your family? Start with a cleaning product, like Thieves Household Cleaner and work your way through the house a little at a time. It doesn’t have to be a drastic change, because every little bit will help, especially if you have young children. So many accepted practices nowadays affect the respiratory system and that is just one thing! A lifetime of toxic chemicals is not what I wanted for my kids and I wish I had known then what I know now. It’s easy, it’s doable and if you want to start out with a Premium Starter Kit with Thieves you can do that too.
Note: containers are now white, not brown as they appear in these pictures.
See how easy it is to get started kicking chemicals to the curb and with our Essential Rewards program, it makes it even easier.

When you sign up with a Thieves Premium Starter kit or any other Premium Starter Kit (that is your membership order), just select Essential Rewards and choose another product that equals 50PV (product volume). Every month you can choose different products to order and even change the date in Virtual office.

We also have PV Assistant to help you make sure you don't miss an order or miss out on earning points for free product! We have different tier levels making it even more economical - sort of like frequent flyer miles.

If you have questions, please allow me the honor of assisting you!

Happy Oiling!
Cheryl @ Pickle Creek Ranch


<![CDATA[The Lavender Farm at Mona, Utah]]>Mon, 26 Jun 2017 21:23:04 GMThttp://picklecreekranch.com/blog/the-lavender-farm-at-mona-utahThe Lavender Farm at Mona, Utah
(2017 Young Living Convention) 
by Cheryl L. McClure
June, 2017 was slated for our Young Living Convention in Salt Lake City, Utah. Part of the agenda was to visit the lavender farm in Mona but it was much more than a lavender farm! My friend, Debby, went with me and we had a fun time! I have combined some groups of pictures from the farm, here for you to enjoy.

​Arriving at the Farm
Debby and I rode to the farm from Salt Lake City on shuttles that Young Living provided. It took about an hour to get to the farm and once we started touring it, we could see it was a very special place! We were welcomed by a banjo musician at an old store front offering Lavender Lemonade and NingXia Red slushies. As we stood in line to go in the Visitor’s Center, we were offered Peppermint ice-cream that was great for cooling off. At lunch time we were served a couple of healthy salads, turkey, watermelon, berry relish, multi-grain crackers with hummus, and whole wheat cake for dessert! It was delicious AND healthy. The grounds were set for entertainment, food and fun as you will see!

The Paparazzi
This was my paparazzi moment at the lavender farm! I happened to see the helicopter coming over the trees and like the good photographer that I am, I chased it!!! LOL! You see, I am a bit of a Gary and Mary groupie and wanted to get a picture of them when they got out of their ride.  I may have gotten closer than I was supposed to but there were a couple of people who got closer so I think it was ok. I waved at them and Gary waved back at me - well, unless there were other people behind me waving. In one of the pictures it looks like he’s saying, there’s those crazy convention people taking our picture again! And Mary is just as pretty as ever! I don’t know who their driver is but it looks like she has the best job in town.

The Greenhouse and the Crops
Lots of working goes on in the greenhouses and in the rows upon rows of plants in the field. Did you know that Young Living does not use chemicals to control weeds? What they do, is pull weeds. Yes. By hand. By people. Real people.​

We stopped by the tent to see how they progressively grow these plants. I personally, planted one by taking it out of the seedling flat and making an impression in a larger flat, placing it in the dirt and securing by pressing it in.  While we were there, lavender was not in full bloom but I took a picture of a poster that showed it in full bloom!! July is the best month to see the blooms.

The Distillery
This was the most fascinating part of the whole tour to me because this is where our oils get produced!! It was interesting to see the mound of material that is piled up to use and all of the detailed steps that need to be followed to ensure that we get the top quality oil we are so well known for!

Distilling Essential Oils
  • Before harvesting, Young Living experts test a plant’s pH levels to ensure each crop is gathered at the exact right time.
  • Once harvested and dried, plants are placed and compressed in the cookers.
  • Purified steam then rises through the plants, releasing the essential oils into the vapor.
  • Long tubes extending from the top of the cookers allow the vapor to condense back into oil-infused water.
  • This water, containing the essential oils, collects into glass separating chambers where the essential oil floats upward.
  • Once separated from the water, the oil sits undisturbed to allow any solids to settle.
  • The oil is then filtered, poured into large, glass-lined containers, and shipped to Young Living’s facilities in Spanish Fork.
Did You Know?
Each large cooker can contain up to 10,000 liters of plant material, which will yield 4-5 gallons of essential oil. It takes approximately 3/4 acre of crop to fill one cooker.

The Jousting Arena
I guess if you are going to have a large farm and intend to entertain folks every now and then, you might want a jousting arena! Especially with two sons, Jacob and Josef, this will keep them active, riding horses and competing with other riders. It was a delight, to tour the grounds and sit in the shade of a tent listening to music during lunch and then enjoy the sport at the jousting arena. There was no shortage of entertainment, that’s for sure! Just check out the performers, the horses and the young men and women who battled it out!
I am truly grateful for the time I was able to spend at the Young Living Lavender Farm in Utah. If you ever have a chance to visit, go!! Find out when they are open to the public, because that is one of the things that sets us apart from other oil companies. You can visit their corporate farms!! See how they work and what they do and why SEED to SEAL is not just a slogan. We live it!

Happy Oiling!
Cheryl @ Pickle Creek Ranch
<![CDATA[Diffusing the Ocean Breeze]]>Mon, 22 May 2017 13:57:54 GMThttp://picklecreekranch.com/blog/diffusing-the-ocean-breeze
When you can't get to the ocean, bring the ocean home with this diffuser blend!! Kick back and relax as you enjoy this aroma and it's health benefits!

Cheryl @ Pickle Creek Ranch


<![CDATA[Enjoying the Harvest]]>Sat, 20 May 2017 17:07:43 GMThttp://picklecreekranch.com/blog/enjoying-the-harvestEnjoying the Harvest
by Cheryl L. McClure
We had a fresh salad and quiche for dinner one night. With an abundance of kale and some other kind of curly lettuce in the garden it made a good start. Add that, some spinach, homegrown snow peas and snap peas, carrots, homegrown cucumbers, sunflower seeds, craisins, feta cheese and mmmmm it makes a great salad! Top it with this delicious Honey-Apple Cider Vinegar salad dressing.
Honey-Apple Cider Vinegar Salad Dressing
I made this salad dressing and it had just the right twang!
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup honey
2 tsp. dijon mustard
3/4 tsp salt
3/4 tsp pepper
Add two drops of Lemon Vitality essential oil or Orange Vitality essential oil. 
Whisk it all together. Store in a jar and shake each time before pouring.
Crustless Sausage Quiche
For the quiche, we use fresh eggs. It has been a joy to raise ducks and chickens at the ranch. They are not maintenance free, but the eggs they produce are very rich making all the work worth it! Duck eggs are great for baking too. Anyway, for the quiche, I used one duck egg and three chicken eggs, which makes a huge difference in comparison to store bought eggs. All being said, visit your local farmers market if you don't raise chickens!! Once you've had a farm fresh egg, those pale yellow eggs will never match up. 
Rouen Ducks
Farm Fresh Chicken Eggs
Quiche ingredients:
4 eggs
1 cup of milk
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
1/4 cup feta cheese
1/2 onion (or some green onions) chopped
1/2 cup mushrooms
2 cups spinach or kale
Add cooked, crumbled pork sausage or bacon
1/2 cup of Mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 350°
Oil your pie plate
Sauté onion, mushrooms, spinach and other veggies
Pan fry pork sausage or bacon
Add veggies and meat to the pie plate
Sprinkle feta cheese on top
Whisk 4 eggs, 1 cup of milk and the parmesan cheese.
Pour on top
Spread Mozzarella cheese on top
Bake at 350° for approximately 50 minutes or till golden brown and eggs are set.

What I like about this is that you can do veggies and meat or just plain veggies. Cook the spinach or kale till wilted. Mix it up by adding roasted cauliflower or pan fried zucchini and tomatoes. When our Malabar spinach starts growing, we will add that too.

There’s really no hard fast rule to this. Make it for breakfast, lunch or dinner! Make it Italian by dripping a toothpick in Oregano Vitality essential oil and swirl that around in the egg mixture or add herbs.
Cheryl @ Pickle Creek Ranch