Tuesday, December 31, 2013

The Open Door





                                         My mantra for the upcoming year…..open doors.




                                                   








Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas from our dog to yours….











Even Santa can't ignore a face like this.  Merry Christmas to all my friends!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Christmas Card 2013

Find your blessings friends……whether that be a small piece of quiet or a jumble of activities and a sandwich.  Find it.  Find your place to belong.  Find and acknowledge your blessings.  Don't take anything for granted for you can't predict tomorrow.


Those kids below are mine.  I am blessed.  They give me giggles and frustration.  Fortunately, not always within the same minute.  They give good hugs.  They hardly ever give me a decent picture without a bribe or threat.  They are loved immensely and life wouldn't be complete without them.  I would like a decent picture occasionally though…  PLEASE?

Merry Christmas,  kids…………..  Enjoy family time together.  Enjoy your time!

(tomorrow you will be doing chores…!)



Love,  Mom










Sunday, December 8, 2013

The Christmas Bucket List…Thrift Shoppe Mom Style.




If Buddy the Elf has a Christmas Bucket List...then I deserve one too?  Right?  I thought so.
Where should I begin?  There are so many options available.

Do I do one that is Dallas Specific?  
How about one that is all-inclusive and available only if I am the next lottery winner?
   (a girl has to dream!)
What about a generic one?   You know..the one that includes wishing for world peace & gingerbread villages.

There are too many decisions here..... I will start with Dallas.

1.  Drive around downtown Dallas at night and enjoy the night lights.
2.  Six Flags Holiday in the Park & drink hot chocolate.
3.  PrestonWood Christmas Nativity Show & drink hot tea.
4.  Michael W. Smith with the DSO.
5.  Family Pics with a Photographer at the Arboreutum.... on a Christmas Card.
6.  Christmas Eve Dinner at the Melting Pot or at Turtle Creek…with hot cider.
7.  Christmas Day Dinner...Catered by La Hacienda.  Drink Hot Chocolate!
8.  Family tree decorating complete with hot chocolate & Christmas music
9.  Ice skating at the Galleria & drink hot tea.
10. Tour the Gaylord ICE exhibit & drink hot chocolate.
11.  Watching Elf &Christmas Vacation on Christmas Day…& drink hot chocolate.
12.  Bake a gingerbread house & snuggle & drink hot chocolate.









Ok then....That was Easy.  Lets pretend that money isn't an option.

1.  A trip to NYC to see the lights and to ice skate around Rockefeller Plaza
2.  New Cars for EVERYONE!  HOT CHOCOLATE FOR EVERYONE!
3.  Family Christmas pictures taken on a beach during the week of Christmas
4.  Michael Buble, Michael W Smith & Straight No Chaser during the month of December.  Who wants to go with me?  Yes, we will drink hot cider!
5.  Shopping the Neiman's Christmas Gift List.  Start making your list friends.
6.  New Years Day in Sydney, Australia.  Yes, the private jet was summoned
7.  Hiring a light service to decorate our house & street  "Gingerbread Style" for the holiday.
8.  Driving in a limo all night looking at the lights.  Bringing Friends. Drinking.
9.  Gifting with Oprah's favorite things & drinking………….
10. Doing whatever I want……..Whenever & Where ever I want…while drinking hot chocolate.
11.  Visiting Bethlehem with the family & drink hot chocolate.
12.  Michael Kors, Vera Wang &  Jimmy Choo for my girls.
13.  A privately planned wedding for C.G. & R.S. in England.   No expenses shall be spared.
14.  Live-in housekeeper & private chef…who makes hot chocolate.
15.  Give college scholarships to all my friends children….and drink hot chocolate.














Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Thankfulness.






This year has been a difficult one to find things for which I am thankful for.   Yes, I can tell you that I am grateful for my new Fossil purse that a friend found for me.  I can add my DH & the kids to the list.  I can tell you that I am grateful for my computer.  I love my MAC & couldn't imagine life without my calendar syncing to the iPhone.   I am grateful for my job.  It keeps me somewhat sane….and well dressed.    Yes,  LS…….  I know you find that one shocking, the sane part.   All of the mentioned are meaningless.  Well, not all!

But this year,   I really need to shout out to a few friends who have remained in my grasp.   You know who you are……..  R.B. (aka…the Cajun),   C.K., R.G.,  P.I., K.B., L.S., B.W., G.N. & her husband W.N.,  L.B. (aka Ethyl),  DF & LF,   M.L. & T.P., J.G.   You guys have kept in touch with me.  I have loved & needed the random phone calls.  The texts that keep me laughing.  The love & prayers.  The unconditional support.  You guys have been my rock and for that I have been grateful.  Thanks friends.


Now because I love you, friends…..  This is my current Thanksgiving dish.  This is the one that makes my heart go pitter patter.   My favorite Aunt made it one time at Thanksgiving and it changed my life.  Even though she is gone……  I may never forgive her for making it ONE time.  So I made it better…..  GREEN CHILIS!  OH MY!  I am very thankful for the GREEN CHILI'S!  I hope you will be too.







I would put a picture of the finished dish on here…..but yellow makes a terrible picture.  Forgive me…and buy me some much needed new camera gear!   Christmas is coming & I have been a good girl!

 

Friday, November 15, 2013

Pumpkin Bread - with or without cranberries & pecans

Today I received a threatening text from RB, the Cajun.   She mentioned visiting my BFF's blog more frequently if I didn't change my latest post and remove the cranberries.  Apparantly, cranberries are offensive to the Cajun.  Who knew?   I believe Ree won't notice the new Cajun from LA when she hasn't even noticed the Redneck Texan yet.


This post was up next on the old blogging block.   R.B. can skip the cranberries.








My son, CG, begs for this!  He absolutely loves pumpkin bread.  He loves it even more with fresh cranberries.  I make it for him year round.  During the summer……  I just leave out the cranberries.  It is too difficult to find them during the summer and craisins just aren't a good substitute.






PS….  Watch the baking time with fresh cranberries.  I tend to bake it a bit longer with them.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Cranberry Crunch...YUMMMMMM!!!!

As promised from last year I am posting this recipe from our Thanksgiving meal.  It was delicious.  Everyone.....except my dear husband loved it.   G.G.  loves the traditional cranberry sauce.  He prefers it straight from the can with the lines and all.......  YUCK.







Cranberry Crunch
1 cup oatmeal
1/2 cup flour
1 can whole berry cranberry sauce
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened

Mix everything together except the sauce.  Spread half of the oatmeal stuff in a pie plate.  Spread the Sauce.  Crumble the rest on top.

Bake at 350* for about 35 minutes.


This was taken before baking.




I found this recipe over at the Southern Plate.  She has some great pictures of the finished product too.  She has even topped it with vanilla ice cream.   If you have never been to the Southern Plate blog.....go check out Miss Christy.  While I don't know her personally......I consider her my friend.

http://www.southernplate.com/2011/11/cranberry-crunch-and-ghosts-of-thanksgiving-past.html




Yes, that is a disco ball.  Tramp loves to chase the sparkles across the yard.


This is about as fall as it gets here at our house.  Happy Fall Friends!





Thursday, September 19, 2013

My latest project

  I have been wanting to find a large frame and customize it with a chalkboard.  
All summer, I  hit up several local thrift stores and several yard sales and found nothing acceptable at the price of almost "free".  Yea, does any of you feel my pain here?

Last week, at my favorite thrift store.......this little gem was just sitting there.  The price on it was $9.99. I did a double take and questioned the guy walking around.  It has a couple of dings on the top.  For a chalkboard in my kitchen.....I call it purposely distressed. 






The hubby cut a piece of masonite to size and decided to be a nice guy and paint as well.  He knows that I hate using a paint brush.  My preferred paint method is spray paint.  Yea, I am that lazy.






This is the finished frame and the new kitchen wall color.  He painted that too.




Next..........  I want to find a new kitchen table & chairs.  Well, maybe that and cross something off the bucket list.  Apple Pie?










Sunday, September 8, 2013

YIKES!!!!!

Yesterday, the above picture was taken.  She still looks like that.  So do I.






This gave us a giggle when she was in the 1st grade.  
1st grade cutie










YIKES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

She can't bring him chocolate.  He is allergic.




Her Daddy said "Yes, you can marry my daughter!"












Saturday, September 7, 2013

Give this girl a can of spray paint & she can change the world.

Yesterday, I took pictures of a really ugly silver lamp.  I knew it had potential when it was purchased.  I had been keeping the lamp hidden in a closet upstairs until the exact idea came to mind.

They were decent pictures of an ugly lamp.   I saw them on the LED panel of my camera.  This morning when I tried to upload them ...they weren't there.  Neither was the flash card.  I hate it when this happens.



always here to help........





This is what I used.  It was about 6 dollars at Home Depot.   It was both paint & primer.  Nice.




So you get the finished product pictures instead.  Trust me......the silver finish was never a good idea.  I bought the lamp at one of my favorite stores for something less that 7 dollars.  I really don't remember the exact price.








Next......Trying my hand at repairing this webbing.  Maybe a little spray paint too.









Saturday, August 31, 2013

Mountain Dew Bundt Cake & the solution to hoarding

I never make cake.  My husband doesn't care for it.  Something scarred him as a child with cake and we can't figure it out.  He only eats carrot cake.  He considers it a vegetable.  Right?

This story has two questions.

1.  If I don't make cake...Tell me why do I need the 2 bundt pans in the closet?
 (ANSWER... I must be a hoarder.)

2. Why was there a can of mountain dew in the pantry?  We don't drink that soda.  (ANSWER....  It belongs to a child living here?)

The obvious solution to both questions....MAKE CAKE.    The husband & I are watching our diet this month.  We are really trying to eat better and cleaner.  We won't eat this...RIGHT?  He hates cake. I don't care for mountain dew.   It is a winning solution for all and the pantry gets cleaned out in the process.




MOUNTAIN DEW CAKE

1 yellow cake mix
1 small box of lemon instant pudding
12 ounces of mountain dew
3/4 cup vegetable oil
4 eggs

Mix it together.  Pour into a greased & floured bundt pan.
Bake @ 325 for about 50 minutes.

Let sit in pan for 20 minutes to cool before flipping.

Glaze...

3 cups powdered sugar
1/4 cup + 1 Tb Mountain Dew
1 small teaspoon of lemon extract  (yes, I had that too...go figure.)


I suppose you are asking yourself who ate the cake.  Between 4 teenagers in the house and 2 adults.....that picture is all that currently remains of the cake.  It was an epic diet fail. However, the pantry did get cleaned out!!!




Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Creamy Avocado Lime Ranch...my new best friend.

Sometimes a good idea just hits me.  Occasionally, it isn't as great as I originally planned.  This afternoon it was amazing.  OH my!   If you have ever been to Chuy's in Plano..this stuff is similar.  I think the avocado is what makes it so yummy.

2 cups of buttermilk
3 tablespoons of ranch dressing mix
almost a half cup of mayonnaise
1 jalapeƱo
1 avocado
1/4 cup cilantro
1 lime, squeezed
1/2 t. cumin
a small handful of cilantro

Vitamix until it is creamy and light green.  The avocado pit was lonely.  I tossed it in the bowl.

I grilled some chicken and drizzled it on top of my salad with multigrain tostito scoops and some fresh salsa.   The boy child,  C.G. was double-dipping.  He said it had changed his life.  He ate salad willingly and cleaned his room.  




Salsa......coming soon to a blog near you.


Don't judge a chip by the thumb holding it.....I need a manicure.









Tuesday, June 18, 2013

My latest finds......


This like-new Italian Leather Chair.....  67.00  SOLD!
Laughing while a friend poses...........priceless.




I have been wanting another oval fiesta ware plate.  They are between 25 & 35 dollars retail.  I know this because I own 4 of them in other colors.  It all depends on where you shop.   Both appear to have never been used.  The smaller plate was 1.99.  The platter........  4.99.  YES,  I am winning the thrift shop game.   My friend up there, M.B.,  has mentioned we should start a blog and brag about our winnings.  Maybe I should tell her it's too late???  Nah!!!!


Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Hummingbirds...Bring 'em On.



I don't have them..... YET.    I ran across this feeder at the local thrift shop...it was 1.99!  The balloon top is glass and it has the colors baked on.  It is heavy and hangs by a beaded wire loop.  I love it.  I think it would retail for about 20.00.  It looks nice.







Hummingbird Food
2 cups water
1/2 cup white sugar.

Boil the water.  Add the sugar.  Stir it around for 5 minutes or so until the sugar is dissolved.
Squeeze in a few drops of red food coloring.
Cool.

Please don't buy this stuff!  It can be made for less than a quarter.  All it takes is about 5 minutes of your time!




Easy Peasy...Seriously!

(the above pan...Vintage .Le Crueset.  Price... 2.99.  Yes, the local thrift shop.)




Bring on the birds!




BIRD??  Did someone say Bird???  Tramp is quite the hunter.....


He is also quite the napper....

Friday, May 31, 2013

My son, the Superhero.




My youngest, C.G. needed an original superhero costume for a DNOW weekend at church.  He didn't have a clue what he wanted to be.  He is 13.  I can't fault him for that.....when you are cute the options are endless.  We went with what  could be made using my limited sewing skills. 

The idea is get 2  large t-shirts at the thrift shop.  Wash them!  I bought a red & a purple.  Cut them exactly the same size on the back side of the shirt and leave the neck hole open.  DO NOT CUT THE NECKHOLE apart!!  Flip it over so it is inside out and sew the two shirt sides together.  I didn't sew the bottom.  It was already finished and I didn't want to bother.  Turn them right side out, iron and then sew a line of topstitching along the outer edge of the folded seam.   I cut the large yellow sun shape out of yellow broadcloth and backed it with the iron-able wonder under.  After that,  I again topstitched the edges down and ironed on the "STASHE".  
That's it.  EASY PEASY!
The "Stache" was found at Hobby Lobby with all the other iron on decals and letters.

The big boy...... that would be R.S.  He is my oldest daughter's "SPECIAL FRIEND".   We like him.  

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Totally-Yummo Breakfast Muffins.

These muffins were made for the girls in honor of their spring break.  Please understand that if you do make these babies......have a portable container ready to send them off elsewhere.    I know my readers and I love you.  BUT, none of you were at home so I sent them with Miss C. for her friends at Starbucks.    She thought of them as party favors.  Yea, that works.






I will post the recipe here soon....keep checking.  I just need to find it.   Yes, this post didn't happen yesterday.......  Yes, it did happen.  Yes, they really are that amazing.  And yes, you will need to eat more than one!


Saturday, May 11, 2013

Leadership

Last night, my baby MG was named the Colorguard Captain for WHS 2013-2014.   It was her greatest achievement to date.  That girl was on fire...........  She looked like this when she arrived home from school.  But, she wasn't wearing this little number...  Too bad.




My  advice and wisdom to her is be the leader you would want to have.  Own the title...BUT DON'T LET IT BECOME YOU.   Give of yourself.  Use your privileges with responsibility and have wisdom & grace in all situations.  

Style & Attitude is important too!



WE LOVE YOU BABY!