Wednesday, July 23, 2014

{ Bowling we go }

Bowling fun

I am a huge believer in doing fun activities with the kids, that don't break the bank.   If you look, you can always find something to do that is either free or very inexpensive, and the kids will love you for it.

We are trying to cram as much fun as we can into the last month of summer, before school starts up.

My niece and nephew come to my house twice a week, during the summer, and everyday day during the school year for homeschooling.

Bowling fun

Sometimes we stay home, just hang out, or swim in the pool...but there are days that we want to do something different.

Our local base bowling alley has a special all summer through, $1 for shoe rental and $1 per game.  I love it, it's cheap and it's a fun hour or two at the bowling alley.

Bowling fun

We eat before we go bowling, that way the only thing we really need to get there are fountain drinks for $1.50. Perfect!!

The best part for me is watching the kids having fun and seeing the crazy things that happen when you get 6 people together for bowling.

Bowling fun

We had one kid get his thumb stuck in a ball, one drop the ball behind as they went in to bowl, one trip and almost fall flat on his face and lots and lots of gutter balls.

Bowling fun

And lots and lots of laughs and tummy aches from laughing so hard.

Bowling fun

Cousin love which always warms my heart :)

Bowling fun

Just plain ol' fun, a good time spent out of the house and by the time we return home, everyone is pooped out and on the couches relaxing.


Bowling fun

My favorite way of passing an afternoon.  Friday night????  A big sleepover because the kids all want to play games together on their laptops.

I'm sure there will be pizza and soda and chips, staying up way past their bedtime and lots and lots of belly laughs.

Now I need to run out and take my daughter to Tae Kwon Do....running late....oops.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

{ Color, Color and more Color }

I love color!

Pops of color show up through my house.  I tend to keep things kind of neutral but then bring in lots of color with accessories, and the fun part about that, is that I can change it up anytime I like.

I thought today I would show you pops of colors around my house.  I'm almost done with my kitchen and having everything just right, but I still have to give the yellow bench a second coat.

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I'm not going for perfect either, I love the look of used, old furniture with notches here and there and bare spots too.

Nevertheless, come with me and let me show you what is around me.

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The most beautiful of blues, oh I love it so.....but I also am smitten with this minty green.

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This is the bench that is not quite yet done, it still requires a whole other coat, but my word, how beautiful is that bright yellow?

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And here is mama's chair, pink and pretty, and girly and me.

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When they are all done, I will take a photo of the chairs with the table, the white table itself is a work in progress, it is almost finished but not quite, still needs some coats here and there.

I can't tell you just how beautiful my kitchen is starting to look.  I finally have my table and chairs looking like I wanted them to, soft and pretty and so reminiscent of Cath Kidston, which is what I'm actually going for.

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This basket sits in the corner of the dining room and holds some of my tablecloths, placemats and crocheted goodies. I could never find enough room for all my stuff and today it finally clicked in my head.....all the baskets I have laying around, one in that corner would be just what I needed. Really liking it there.

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I am going for a soft looking kitchen and I think I'm getting there.

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Since we're on the subject of color, I wanted to show you what I'm finishing up today. This Hexagon Cushion is almost done, I am now just joining it all together and then tomorrow I need to run to Walmart and find a pillow insert.

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I kept the front and the back the same, crocheting two of each hexagon, but the placement is different from one to the other...the joining method is also different as you can see.  One side is raised, the other not.

Tonight I'm making half hexagons to fill in the edges and then plan on joining everything and leaving just one end open to insert the pillow, once done I will close it up and then do an edging all the way around. 

It is so much fun to crochet with all these different colors. 

Also wanted to quickly show you the book I received to review.  I've already flipped through it and it has some mighty delicious recipes.  I can't wait to make the Irish Soda Bread, the Shepherd's Pie, the Fruit Loaf and other yummy things.

Oh and speaking of yummy things, I posted the two recipes to my blog, the one for the Bread Machine yeast rolls and the Crockpot Beef Stroganoff.  Hope you enjoy :)

Alrighty, I have crochet waiting for me and a hot cup of green tea. 

Good night friends :)

Monday, July 21, 2014

{ Rainy Monday }

Rain

Wonderful rain has been coming down today and I do love a rainy day.

Candles are lit, windows are slightly opened to enjoy the rainy aroma, and life seems to slow down.

Candlelight

It always seems to be a day for relaxing on the couch and either watching movies, or reading.

Rainy day relaxation

But that is all after the housework has been finished. It really is never ending, there are daily tasks that need to be done without fail and I choose to just get them done so that I can then enjoy the rest of my day.

Yummy breakfast....I'm a wheat toast and creamy homemade butter kinda gal.

Breakfast

Cath Kidston Surprise.....An interruption in breakfast to get the door, and this beauty was delivered.  I am so very happy, what a beautiful bag from Cath Kidston.  My husband surprised me with this gift, yes ladies, he is a keeper.

Cath Kidston Bag

Ironing.....again, me and the ironing.  I know some of you think I'm nuts, but I don't know, I just enjoy it and find it quite relaxing.

Ironing

Crockpot....dinner cooking away.  I love using my crockpot on rainy days, it gives me more time to sit down and not have to worry about dinner prep.

Crockpot Stroganoff

Pretty flowers.....another surprise from my husband.  He picked them up at Walmart the other day and thought that I would enjoy them.  He was right, I do like them, a lot.

Beautiful flowers

Oil Lamp.....I have this slight obsession with lamps and lanterns. If I could, I would have them all over my house.

Oil lamp

Relaxing and Crocheting.....an hour spent on the couch with my crochet hook in hand, working on a new cushion and enjoying the candle light.

Rainy day relaxation

Dinner....these delicious bread machine yeast rolls.  So many people shy away from fresh bread, but a  bread machine is your best friend when you want fresh yummy bread in a pinch.   (recipe will be up later)

Bread Machine Yeast Rolls

Paired with this comforting, filling crockpot beef stroganoff.  Will also have that recipe up later.

Crockpot Beef Stroganoff

Now, for some TV viewing news....in case you didn't know it, The Mill Season 2 just started this weekend. 

If you like Amish shows like I do, you may have watched Expecting Amish on the Lifetime Channel this past Saturday.  If you didn't, you can watch it online, and I do believe it will be shown again on the 26th of July.

I'm going to go enjoy the rest of the rainy day, and I think my husband and kids want to watch a movie, not sure which one.

Have a wonderful Monday night!!!

{ Happy Homemaker Monday - 07/21/2014 }

Good Morning friends, sure hope you had a great weekend and are ready for this new week ahead.

It's Monday morning, which means Happy Homemaker Monday.  I do enjoy this feature and look forward to it, it's like my week can't get started until my HHM is up :)


www.familycorner.blogspot.com

Breakfast time....what is on the plate this morning::::
A big cup of coffee with some vanilla creamer, and a bowl of oatmeal. 

On today's to do list::::
Laundry - one last load to wash, put away one basket of clean laundry
Finish painting the kitchen table, give the benches their first coat of paint
Bank - deposit two checks
Take Jasmine to Tae Kwon Do tonight

Currently reading::::
Painting the Moon by Traci Borum.  Really enjoying this one, it takes place in England at Chilton Crosse and it is about Noelle who inherits a cottage and a gallery from her Aunt to recently passed away.  Noelle leaves behind her life in California to move to a quiet village.  MY dream hahahah

On the TV today::::
Portuguese Soaps - Beijo do Escorpiao, Mulheres, Agua de Mar
The Strain - hubby and I have been wanting to watch this one and it just started
Expecting Amish - movie I recorded from Lifetime channel on Saturday, want to watch it today

The weather outside is::::
Cloudy, we actually got some rain last night which has cooled the temperatures around here, thank goodness.  It's supposed to rain again, but we'll see. 

On the menu this week::::
Monday - Slow Cooker Meatballs in Mini Bread Bowls, Salad
Tuesday - Teriyaki Chicken with Rice
Wednesday - Homemade Quesaritos
Thursday - Chicken Tetrazzini, Veggies
Friday - Grilled Half and Half Pizza
Saturday - Cheesy Spanish Rice Casserole
Sunday - Fettucine Alfredo, Roasted Spaghetti Squash

If I have a few minutes to myself, I will::::
Pull out my sewing machine, I want to make some bunting this week.

New recipe I tried, or want to try this week::::
Scalloped Potatoes and Ham.  I adapted a recipe from Kraft.com using what I had on hand, and it was a hit.  I am such a lover of potatoes though, you would give them to me ever which way and I would be happy. 

Scalloped Potatoes and Ham

In the garden::::
My chili peppers are soooo big and they are starting to turn color, can't wait.  Still waiting on the tomato and cucumbers to do anything, but I did harvest another strawberry.  I also planted lettuce and spinach, and they are already growing. 

Favorite photo from the camera::::
How cute is this Alpaca? 

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Homemaking Tip::::
We all buy appliances thinking that we are going to get a lot of use out them, and then they end up tucked in the back of a cabinet or in the pantry, even in the garage.  Go through them all, pull them out and decide what you will use and what you want.  Give away, or do a yard sale with the items you no longer want to keep, but for those that you do, make sure to pull them out at least every other week and rotate them in the kitchen.  I know I've given this tip before, but I thought I would remind you all again. 
I usually pull out one of mine and use them for that week, whether it be the Bread Maker or my Rotisserie.

Visiting with Blog friends (blog you want to share, blog post that caught your eye)::::
One of my favorite blogs to visit, which can actually be found on my sidebar, is Bratte Bakka og grone lier.  It is not an English blog, but it doesn't matter to me because the photos are absolutely gorgeous and I just love to sit and visit for a few hours.  Give it a try, I am sure you will enjoy it just as much as I do. 

Praying for::::
Our prayers were answered last week, we received the our rent deposit.  Obviously they didn't return the full amount and they also charged us to repair something which was broken when we moved into the house and they KNEW about it.  But you know, I'm just happy to have the deposit in my hand and never have to deal with those people again. 
Our moving claims ALSO came in last week, so thankful for that too.
I don't have anyone or anything specific that I'm praying for this week, just health and happiness for my family and friends. 

Bible Verse, Devotional that is resonating with me at the moment::::
 
gif Black and White stuff sea Bible verse

PLEASE, don't add links to this list that are not part of the Happy Homemaker Monday. I've asked numerous times, and I'm frankly quite tired of having to remove links to other posts that shouldn't be in this list. Please be respectful of my request!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

{ Saturday Outing }

I don't know about you all, but as much as I enjoy going out with the family and having fun, there is nothing like the minute I return home, kick off my shoes and sit on my couch.

It feels so very good, especially when it's hot outside.

Last night we had the family over for dinner, and then my niece and nephew slept over.

It's always fun when that happens, all the kids have fun and we tend to do things that we wouldn't usually do.......like take a walk to McDonald's at 11:30pm.  Crazy!!!

As usual though, the kids try to make an all nighter of their sleep overs, but it never really lasts as by 3am they're all fast asleep...well except for my Jasmine, who has her father's sleep patterns and can stay up all night, which she did.

This morning though, she jumped right into the kitchen and decided to make breakfast for everyone.  Scrambled eggs, toast, pancakes and bacon.  It makes this mama's heart proud to see her enjoying cooking as much as I do.

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She did so well, and breakfast was enjoyed by all.

Some housework was done, and then around lunch time, we all headed to the county fair. I had heard that it was a big one, that it was one of the best in the area etc. Truth be told, it wasn't anything like we expected.

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But we all still ended up having fun, you know it's always a good time when you can go somewhere with the family, walk around, laugh, talk and just kick back for a couple of hours.

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I always have so much fun watching the kids on the rides. It truly takes me back to when I was their age, and the thrill of going on these fast rides was all I looked forward to.

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Nowadays, I'm much happier with my feet firmly planted on the ground.

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The boys wanted to try rock climbing, and did quite well, but they both quickly realized that it is not as easy as it looks.

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And then of course they quickly moved on to the next thing....some boxing with these huge gloves. It was hilarious watching them try to punch each other out while on a bouncy castle. HA!!

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Ooopssss!!!! Needless to say, Nicholas was done after this shot. LOL

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It was quite hot too and I think the boys were feeling really hot in those gloves and helmets.

We didn't stay for very long, there wasn't much to see, and we didn't want to wait until 8pm for the rodeo to start, so we said our goodbyes and headed home.

Nothing like walking in the door to an air conditioned house, is there?

Tonight I'm going to find a nice movie to watch, work on my niece's crochet blanket and just take it easy. Tomorrow I plan on pulling my kitchen table apart so that I can finish painting it, and I'm also painting the chairs. Want to get it all finished by tomorrow night. Of course, there's laundry, and the daily housework, and I'm planning on some pool time.

Do hope you're all having a wonderful Saturday.

Friday, July 18, 2014

{ I hope you dance }

Pretty little white dress

I hope you never lose your sense of wonder,
You get your fill to eat but always keep that hunger,
May you never take one single breath for granted,
GOD forbid love ever leave you empty handed,
I hope you still feel small when you stand beside the ocean,
Whenever one door closes I hope one more opens,
Promise me that you'll give faith a fighting chance,
And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance.
(I hope you dance...Lee Ann Womack)

I unplugged successfully!!!!

Seriously, I did, and I don't miss Facebook one single little bit.  What I thought was going to be a huge effort on my part, has become extremely easy, and for that I have the Lord to thank.

Yesterday I got down to business, to what really matters in my life, and that means home and family.  To really give it the attention it needs, and I don't mean the usual daily tasks we do with our homemaking, I mean to look around and change things up.

To give it a little love here and there, whether it is crocheting a little doily for a small corner in your house, or repainting a piece of furniture, it could even be bringing in some flowers from the garden.

Painting project

Just a sneak peek at what I'm doing in my kitchen. Painting and more painting, a project I have wanted to do for many years but never got around to it, because I kept telling myself I didn't have time. Guess what? I DID have some extra time, I was just using it the wrong way.

New color

I'll show you all once it's finished.

School is restarting in a little over a month, and I've been busy getting things set up. This house doesn't have an extra bedroom, so we have to make do with what we can. I've turned the small closet under the stairs into a Homeschool supplies area, books, and school items and the printer are housed in there. It works for us.

School supplies

I took care of the garden, I pulled weeds, I watered, I cleaned and rearranged a few things, and then when I was done, I danced....I headed to the back yard under the trees and really soaked in the fresh air and the beautiful summer afternoon.

Pretty little white dress

All it takes is a little white dress with the prettiest eyelet fabric, and some pretty flowers in hand.

Stop worrying about others, or what they will think if they see you out there spinning around bare feet. Who cares?!?!?

Pretty little white dress

It is exactly what I did, and it felt AMA-ZING!!

The rest of the day I spent indoors with laundry and dishes and cleaning....but I also got time in to exercise, read and hang out with the family.

Dinner time quickly came around and I put together a delicious, filling and yet simple meal.

Hot corn on the cob

Dinner table

Corn on the cob and Scalloped Potatoes and Ham.  Yum!!!

As the sun started setting for the night, I quickly turned on my fairy lights and enjoyed how it made everything look so warm.

Mom and Nic

Mason jars, and floating photos of me and my baby loves.

Mom and Jas

"But mom, the lid says beets!" she said.  HA!!!

That's ok, I happen to think it gives it more character.  I'm hoping to try these again but with smaller photographs in a vintage black and white tone.  What you can't see from the front, is that there are lavender flowers floating inside too.

pugs

Speaking of loves, my pug loves seem to really enjoy the fairy lights, anytime they are on, you can find them sitting under there.

We're having some horrible haze caused by fires in the vicinity. Smells horrible out side and everything looks grey, but it did provide quite a stunning sunset.

Hazy sunset

So, my wonderful friends, I'm here to tell you to dance, to embrace life, to remember that there is more out here than on a computer screen on Facebook or Twitter.

I quickly realized that the time I was spending on there, was time I was missing out on my real life...instead it was just zipping by me at a super fast pace.

And one day when I die, I don't want to look back and think that I could have been sitting on the couch reading with my kids, or chatting or watching a movie, or that I could have been out in the garden enjoying nature, or making a home, or holding my husband's hand while out on a walk......but instead, I was sitting on the computer, talking to a screen.

Definitely not what I want to remember my life as. I made the change, and now I'm dancing through it. Yes I am!!!