Sunday, December 31, 2006

It's Sunday, wow, last day of the year!!!

Good morning everyone, I'm actually trying to get back into my normal schedule and that includes blogging every day, something I've missed dearly. I know I know, and thank you for all the emails inquiring as to where I am and why there's no updated news on the blog.

I promise to do better, as a matter of fact, starting tomorrow, I can say that I'll be back to blogging every morning, so don't forget to pop on in and have a Hot cup of coffee with me :)

Now before I get into my usu
al blabbing, I need you to run, don't walk, RUN over to my dear friend Jaymi's blog........go see what she has to share with us all. I'm SO SO happy for her right now, I know it's something she's been wanting for a while :)

Ok so I realize I didn't even share any christmas pictures with my family, ughhh...I'm a bad bad blogger and family member sometimes, well friend
too. I can't remember the last time I actually called my friend Veronica. Veronica if you're reading this, I'm SO SORRY, I haven't forgotten you.

If you want to see some pictures of the kids, just go HERE.



Isn't it funny how things change as you get older??? I remember being young and really looking forward to New Years Eve, I anticipated it and couldn't wait to go out with the family or friends, celebrate ringing in the new year in style. Yeah, that was until I got married and had kids, then I realized that I wasn't all that thrilled about driving somewhere on that night, with all the weirdos and drunk people out there, it really is much safer to stay home.

And then as the years went by, not only did we stop going out, but we've pretty much stopped celebrating the New Year, there's actually been a few times that I remember going to bed and waking up to January 1st.....wow, how pathetic is that I thought....well really not that pathetic. I'm not one for confusion and mass crowds, too many people bother me, guess maybe that is when my claustrophobia kicks in LOL

So today is no different than any other day, I'll be doing laundry and housework, cleaning carpets, putting away ch
ristmas decorations and all that other fun stuff. We'll act like it's any other day, we'll eat dinner and afterwards stay up a little with the kids, but then I'll do what I do every year, slip into bed and wake up to a WHOLE new year ahead of me.

You know what though, I'm one of those people that find it a bittersweet thing. I mean I look forward to a new beginning, but I also dread what may be coming up. Have you ever just sat there at the end of a year and thought back on everything that's happened??? Then you realize "wow, if only I had known THAT was going to happen"....guess I'm a bit of a worry wart, which is really ridiculous, since I've learnt over the years that there is no sen
se in worrying about things that are out of our control.

See this is where my faith in God comes in. That all tiring battle on my part, because I'm stubborn and no matter how many times he tells me to just let it go and leave it in his hands, I'm always trying to do it myself....I put something in his control only to quickly snatch it back after a few minutes because I
feel like he's not going fast enough for me, or I can do it better. What a joke!!! LOL
I think the Lord has a sense of humor, I mean, how could he not when dealing with the likes of me LOL

But one thing I've learnt, the hard way at times, is that EVERYTHING that has happened to me has been a blessing, and yes I am referring even to those Blessings in Disguise. You know the ones right???
When they happen it irks you to no end, you quickly do the double take "WHAT??? WHY ME?".....and then you remember that good things always come from even those bleak situations, but you're still not quite sure how
something that seems so awful at the time, can mean good in any way.

Until a few weeks or months later, sometimes even a year, then you remember it again and realize that if it weren't for THAT specific moment in time, things wouldn't have worked out so great. Yeah, it's quite a revelation!!!
I've had that happen to me many times, but you know what??? When something else happens I STILL do it again, it's like a vicious cycle
for me.....one I hope to break someday.

Anyway, the moral of the story??? STAY HOME ON NEW YEARS EVE!!! Bwhahahaha

Just so you know, I'm heading your way, YES, I'm actually coming by to say hi, isn't that a shocker???

Before I do though, I want to wi
sh you all a VERY VERY Happy New Year. May this new year bring you all peace, love and health in abundance, I truly hope you all get everything you ever wished for.

I leave you with a non alcoholic recipe for New Year's Eve Punch, enjoy :)



Serves 12-14

Ingredients:

3 1/2 liters ginger ale
2 quarts orange juice
2 oranges, sliced into rounds
20 maraschino cherries

Directions:

  1. In a large punch bowl mix ginger ale and orange juice.
  2. Place sliced oranges on top of punch and arrange the cherries on top of the orange slices.


Friday, December 29, 2006

Coming up to Breathe!!!!

It's been a week now since I've posted anything, that is the longest I've gone. I would give you all the reasons why but honestly, we would be here all day.

I guess life just got overwhelming and I had to prioritize, as much as I love blogging and keeping my family and friends up to date on what's going on with us, some things just take precedence.


Anyway, I'm glad to be able to pop in today and say hi.
First I want to ask you all to say a quick prayer for my MIL, she had surgery yesterday because of her Breast Cancer, so please keep her in your prayers.

We had a good Christmas but I have to tell you, I'm actually glad it's over and done with, it's funny how you anticipate it for so long and then within a few minutes it's all over....this weekend I'm taking the tree down and the decorations too.
Still trying to catch up with all the housecleaning, it hasn't been easy, Nicholas has a cold and I've been getting pretty close to NO sleep, and because he loves his mommy so much, he passed it to me yesterday so I'm feeling pretty cruddy.

I don't know ladies, but it seems I'm always down with a cold during the winter, my body must HATE this time of year.

I haven't been able to come visit anyone or comment on any blogs, I so apologize for it, I'm hoping that next week things will be back to normal. I miss my blogging time, it was such a wonderful way to get my feelings down and to chat with you all.

This time of year always gets me down though, I think being so far away from family is heart wrenching to say the least. I find myself missing them and missing places we were at together etc. That's the reason I posted that picture up above, it's from Estoril, one of my favorite cities in Portugal, I have so many wonderful memories of being at the beach with my brothers and my sister in law, what fun we had.

Anyway, I can't stay too long, Nicholas is not feeling well at all, and well, neither am I, think we're going to grab some lunch and then lay down for a bit.

Hope you're all having a wonderful day and have a great weekend. If I don't see you before, have a good New Year's Eve and please be careful out there. I always stay home that night, too many weirdos and drunk people for my taste :)

God bless,

Friday, December 22, 2006

Wow, that was a record for me!!!!


I've never been away from Blogger for that long, almost a week, that's scary!!!

I do apologize and I know my family is wondering why I haven't updated since Sunday, yes I got the emails inquiring LOL I think that with us being so far apart, me here in the States and them all the way in Sunny South Africa, this place has become our point of contact, the place they come to everyday to know what we're up to, it really does make you feel closer :)

It's been a really crazy week, school just got out on wednesday but there's been school parties and plays and all sorts of stuff going on....in between all that I've been running around getting all my legal stuff done, yes I'm in the process of getting my Green Card and it's just overwhelming. Please say a prayer for me that all this goes as fast and as painless as possible :)

So yesterday afternoon, the skies started turning this really pretty pinkish color and before we knew it, we had snow. I'm used to it snowing and within an hour it's all gone.....but not this time, it snowed hard through the night and through this morning, we ended up with tons of snow. The kids couldn't be happier of course, and I'm thrilled because I know I don't have to leave my house to drive anywhere.

I'm sharing some pictures especially for my family in South Africa, believe me folks, it does NOT snow there, well at least where we lived, I hadn't seen snow until I came to the States and the first time I saw it I was like a kid in a candy store. So happy and giddy!!!






I would post more, but really, who wants to see just pictures in a post??? Other than me???

I am telling you I can't wait for Christmas to come and go, I don't think I can take much more of the "can I open the presents now?"...."is it christmas yet?"....."can I open just one?"....Good Grief!!!

I finally got all my christmas shopping done, the tree is looking beautiful, the presents are wrapped and sitting under it and now it's just a matter of waiting. I always find it so annoying that so much planning goes into it and then within 5 minutes it's all over...talk about a joy kill LOL


Christmas in Portugal - Largest decorated tree in Europe

Sunday you will find me in the kitchen all day, cooking up a storm. Since I'm portuguese you know that Christmas eve is our big day, we have a huge dinner and then load the table with tons of snacks.....since Curt is not portuguese (unfortunately lol Just kidding)....we kind of mesh the two traditions into one. So we have a big dinner with Ham and mashed potatoes and all that good stuff, and then we have the traditional portuguese stuff too, I'm making Pasteis de Bacalhau, Rissois de Camarao, Arroz Doce and a few others.....can't wait.

Well I need to get going, just wanted to pop in and let everyone know that I'm still here and still kicking, just been really busy.

I don't know if I'll have time for another post until Tuesday next week, you all understand with Christmas I really won't have much free time to spend on the computer.

Hope you all have a wonderful Christmas and an even better New Year!!!!
God Bless,

Sunday, December 17, 2006

YEP, I'M AN IDIOT!!!

I picked MercyMe's "Rocking Around the Christmas Tree", not only do I love this song but MercyMe is my favorite Christian Band....so enjoy!!!



Please do me a favor, next year slap me upside the head and do NOT let me go shopping just a week before Christmas. It was HORRIBLE!!!!

It's like everyone and their mother (literally, not joking here) was out. Our first stop was the Toy Store....why?!?!?! WHY would we put ourselves through that?!?!?!
I have never seen so many people in one store at the same time and then they are all walking around looking like Borgs....those little cellphones wrapped around the ear thingy. I'm not sure if they are talking to family or getting a "Mission Briefing" from their headquarters.

Prepare yourselves people, I feel a rant coming on. LOL


The Dreaded Toy Store

Hubby and I split up so we could get things done faster....*snort* Not really, because we moved at snails pace. I love those people that just stand there in the middle of the aisles, not really sure what they're doing because I don't see them picking up anything, just sit stare off into space, you can see that blank look in their eyes as they try to figure out exactly what the toy on the shelf does. Does it move, blink, flash lights, talk....what is the purpose of it???

Meanwhile they hold up 50 people who are just trying to survive the traffic flow. Here's a clue people, just grab the friggin' toy and MOVE ON. If you don't know what it does at first glance, just give up and get something else, chances are you STILL won't know what it does when you try to explain it to the little person you're giving it to.

After surviving all that, I finally get to the check out. Oh here we go, there's 5 check outs all full, huge lines going all the way back to the toy aisles....but I acted like the obedient little shopper, I sigh and huffed a little but calmly pushed my cart those two inches everytime someone else got done paying. Then I see the end in sight, the light at the end of the tunnel....the person in front of me is finally paying. As I reach for the first toy in my cart, another cart just magically appears out of nowhere and sets itself in front of me.....with a sign that catches my eye. "CLOSED"......UGGHHHHHH

I did finally get out of there, but not before having to give my phone number and zip code and....excuse me!!! WHY?!?!? Is someone going to call me if I don't come back to the store within a specified amount of time??? Ridiculous!!!


THE TRAFFIC FROM HELL

So we're done at the toy store and we decide to go eat. Of course that means having to drive to "Outback"....all of a sudden I feel like we're in one of those futuristic movies where everyone moves at lightning speed, zooming past each other, cars just swerving in and out, no blinkers, no thank you for letting me through or even an 'HEY LOOSER, I'm about to cut you off be prepared".....then we get stuck with this lady in front of us.

Ladies Please....I'm begging you, I know we need to look our best at all times, but give me a break. This lady managed to file her nails, put on some nail polish, mascara, lipstick, brush her hair, put it up in a pony tail and apply some eyeliner, ALL WHILE she was driving. Where could she be going that requires this much attention.....or even better, why couldn't she have done this at home before getting in her car???

I don't want to see her do her nails or floss while cutting me off, I just want to get to the next destination as safely as possible.


THE CRAZY RESTAURANT

Let's face it, shopping makes you hungry!!! I know it does me, but wouldn't it be cool if there was a way to send out an alert to everyone, telling them to please stay home while you eat your meal in peace and quiet???

We get to Outback and we've never had a problem being seated or having to wait. Until yesterday. SURPRISE SURPRISE!!!
They tell us we have to wait 15 minutes because they have tons of empty tables but not enough servers/waiters.....ok....well let's wait. So then they hand us that little square electronic thingy.

I'm ashamed to say, we are either not used to going out, or we are dumber than we look. Hubby and I both stare at it, and then sit there, after about 10 minutes hubby picks it up and sets it down, the lights all start flashing. We look at each other:

Hubby - Oops did I break it?
Me - Ugh, did you break that thing, the lights are all flashing, what does it mean?
Hubby - I don't know, I don't ever get these things....
Waiter - I'm ready to get you seated now.....*smiling*
Hubby - OH, is that what this means??
Waiter - Yeah, that's why the lights are going off.

MOVE OVER PEOPLE, the HILLBILLIES have just entered the restaurant. WEll not really, but you know...felt like it LOL

The meal was wonderful by the way, it always is at Outback. But then the kids need to go potty so I take them...and I decided that I needed it too. Now the kids are little, no biggie there, but I'm sorry....why don't they just take down the walls and put up toilets in see through cages for everybody to admire???
What is UP with the bathroom walls....well, can't even call them that.....these whatever they are with huge gaps on the sides, anyone that walks in can see my behind. It's NOT a pretty sight people!!!! Please, bathroom makers out there.....women do NOT enjoy having an audience while we do our deeds.


THE AWFUL MALL

I think hubby and I are suckers for punishment because after all this, we went to the Mall. I can't remember the last time I was touched and pushed and rubbed up against this much.....again everyone and their mother, and father, and cousin and aunts and grandmothers....were shopping at the mall.

We were tired, we were tired of so many people everywhere, and we had a 3 year old in tow who wanted NOTHING more than to ride the escalator up and down. What a royal pain in the behind.

We ended up just picking up some small items there and then Jasmine and I got our ears pierced. Yes I know....Hayley, I finally did it LOL

Jasmine wanted to go first and she YELPED when her first ear got done....but she was a trooper and quickly offered up her nex one just to get it over and done with. Have I mentioned how I had never pierced my ears??? Yep after 32 years I finally did it and let me tell you after seeing Jasmine yelp I wasn't too sure I was up for it LOL
I'm a wuss I admit it....but I bravely sat there and let the nice lady pierce my ears....now we are both sporting pretty little earrings, mine are diamonds (the cheap kind LOL) and Jasmine picked Ruby little ones.....they hurt but they look cute.

We finally made it home at 8pm, after a full day of shopping and fighting off offenders crazy shoppers.

Feels good to have my christmas shopping done, but I will
NEVER EVER EVER EVER be an idiot again and wait this long. I should slap myself for such idiocy.

So there ya go, now you know how my day went....here in about 30 minutes I have to run to get stocking stuffers and groceries.....wish me luck. I hope all the weirdos stayed home, I don't think I can handle a rerun again....and please to all the Borgs out there....go home and use your phones, or write down a list or something, just stop amusing us with your loud babbling conversations, I really could care less if Aunt Bertha wants the doll or the dinosaur for Little Mike!!!

And to all a happy happy Sunday!!!!


Friday, December 15, 2006

Thank God it's Friday!!!


Ugh it's been one of those weeks, raining constantly, everything is wet and mushy and I don't know what I step on when I walk outside....it's just gross I tell ya.

I finally got the hang of driving my Durango and no longer slam on brakes or squeal my wheels, I'm sure the whole population of this Air Base is thankful for it. *snort*

I laugh about it now, but I was getting so frustrated trying to get used to these brakes, I honestly felt like the village idiot behind the wheel. Thank goodness it's over and done with!

I'm loving my new baby, but there is just one thing that is ruining it for me right now....the constant bickering and fighting between the kids and where they get to sit. Yeah, because you see up until now there was no choice, they sat down in the back and that was it, but now there's the middle seat and the back seat, so now it's all a choice of who sits where.....

"I don't want to sit next to him"....
"I don't want Jasmine near me".....
"I want to sit on the right side"....
"no, I WANT to sit behind mommy".

See what I deal with every morning??? What is it with siblings and the constant need to act like they hate each other, is that somewhere in the "Sibling 101 Memo"...I don't remember reading it but I did it myself with my brothers and now I guess it's my way of seeing just how annoying I was. So I humbly apologize to my family, sorry I was such a pain in the behind. LOL

I'm going to do a meme today, one that my wonderful friend Jen had up and she kind of bullied us into doing it....LOL I'm just kidding, she is so not a bully....she did say she wanted us all to do it, and hey I can't say no to a friend, so look for the meme at the end of this post.


It's friday, and if you're a big General Hospital fan, you KNOW that today is an important day for all of us Jason and Sam fans, I know it's just a soap, but do a girl a favor and just humor me will ya? LOL
I've been waiting for these two to reunite forever, this whole past summer of sleaze was just disgusting but hey, it's soap at it's best right, the more weird and out there things are, the better the ratings.

I don't know if there will be posts this weekend, I will be out most of the time doing christmas shopping, I can't believe I have yet to buy one single present, time just seems to have flown by. We're going to head to Boise which is about 45 miles from base, there really is nothing nearby to do some serious shopping at, the closest thing is Walmart and that is 15 miles away....so we get to go to the big city (well as big as Boise can be lol) and shop and have a nice meal and just have some fun. I can't wait!!!

I'm hoping all my christmas cards got out in time, for some reason our mailman was acting weird....he came by 2 days in a row, dropped off the new mail and left the cards sitting there, finally by day 3 I just picked them up myself and drove to the post office to drop them off. What is up with that huh??? Do you NOT see the pretty envelopes waiting to be taken???

I'm off for the day, have tons of stuff to do. Before I leave though I want to remind you of the Christmas Tour of Homes - Starts today, everyone has been eagerly anticipating it, so run on over to Boo Mama's Christmas Tour of Homes and check out all the participants.

Don't forget today's recipe is already posted at Full Bellies....Easy Candy-Bar Treats. Enjoy!!!

12 Days of Baking - Day 1 - Brownie Bombs
12 Days of Baking - Day 2 - White Chocolate Snowdrift Cake
12 Days of Baking - Day 3 - Toffee Butter Crunch
12 Days of Baking - Day 4 - Caramel-Pecan Pumpkin Pie
12 Days of Baking - Day 5 - Easy Candy-Bar Treats

Holiday Meme

1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate? Hot Chocolate

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just set them under the tree? Just sets them under the tree, sometimes wraps them

3. Colored lights on tree or white? White

4. Do you hang mistletoe? No

5. When do you put your decorations up? The weekend after Thanksgiving

6. What is your favorite holiday dish (excluding dessert)? Definitely the Ham but being portuguese all the portuguese goodies we set on the table

7. Favorite Holiday memory as a child. Oh boy I have so many, I would have to say just being with the WHOLE family, eating and unwrapping presents...miss that

8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa? I never really believed in Santa actually, so it wasn't ever an issue for me.

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve? Yes, we've always opened our presents on Christmas Eve.

10. How do you decorate your Christmas tree? White lights. Theme is Gold and White, all the ornaments and ribbons etc are in those two colors.

11. Snow! Do you like it or Dread it? I love snow...love it....just hate driving in it.

12. Can you ice skate? Yes, haven't in years and miss it :)

13. Do you remember your favorite gift? Oh I don't know, there were so many, I can't pick just one.

14. What is your favorite Holiday Dessert? Portuguese Rice Pudding

15. What is your favorite holiday tradition? The big christmas dinner on the 24th and then sitting around the tree talking and counting down the minutes until midnight so we can open the presents

16. What tops your tree? An angel

17. Which do you prefer Giving or Receiving? I love both, but my favorite is giving, there's something about watching the other person open the presents, I just love it.

18. What is your favorite Christmas Song? Santa Claus is coming to town

19. Candy Canes yuck or yum? They're yum, but I can only handle one a day if that.

20. Fruitcake? Don't care for it.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Slow Cooking Thursday

Don't forget the 12 Days of Baking....for today I have a Caramel-Pecan Pumpkin Pie.

12 Days of Baking - Day 1 - Brownie Bombs
12 Days of Baking - Day 2 - White Chocolate Snowdrift Cake
12 Days of Baking - Day 3 - Toffee Butter Crunch
12 Days of Baking - Day 4 - Caramel-Pecan Pumpkin Pie






Welcome to my weekly Crockpot Recipes Exchance. It's such a great way to share your favorite dishes or to learn some new ones to make for your family.
What do you think??? Do You have some great recipes to share, or perhaps you're looking for some delicious ones to give you a reason to pull out the ol' crockpot???
Time to pull out those crockpots and put them to good use. If you want to join in, just grab the banner and add your name to Mr Linky :)

Anyone in the mood for some Bread Pudding???



ENGLISH BREAD PUDDING

16 slices day-old, firm-textured white bread (1 small loaf)
1 3/4 cups milk
1 package (8 ounces) mixed dried fruit, cut into small pieces
1/2 cup chopped nuts
1 medium apple, cored and chopped
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 3gg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves

Tear bread, with crusts, into 1- to 2- inch pieces. Place in slow cooker. Pour milk over bread; let soak 30 minutes. Stir in dried fruit, nuts and apple. Combine remaining ingredients in small bowl. Pour over bread mixture. Stir well to blend. Cover; cook on LOW 3 1/2 to 4 hours or until skewer inserted in center comes out clean.

Makes 6 to 8 servings

NOTE: To make chopping the dried fruit easier try using either a kitchen scissors or spraying the knife with some nonstick cooking spray. :)




Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Ugh enough rain already!!!

It's been raining non stop for the past 3 days or so, it's starting to make me a little loopy.

I think the one thing about it that I most dislike is the fact that muddy footprints seem to abound in my house, and I do try to keep up with the cleaning but come on.....how many times in an hour can I get down on my knees with paper towels in tow before I get sick of it?

Yes I got it, rain is pretty, it makes flowers grow, yada yada yada...but what's that saying "too much of a good thing?" LOL

I've really been enjoying my new Durango BUT there's just one thing that is frustrating me....the brakes. Now either it's just me trying to get used to it, or I don't know but it's doing that JERKING when I try to come to a full stop. I look like the village idiot sitting behind the wheel....driving all great and then I have to stop and *JERK*....*sigh* ridiculous LOL
I'm going to get the brakes checked this weekend, make sure there's nothing wrong with them, I almost hope there's something to it so I don't feel like a total idiot LOL

Last week when we were at Walmart, Santa Claus was visiting and the kids got to take pictures with him, so yesterday we picked those up, I think they came out pretty good....obviously the kids weren't "dressed up" for it, we didn't even know about it until we were AT the store, but whatever, it's no biggie.





Aren't they just adorable??? I know that's a weird question coming from me, I mean I'm their mom, of course they're adorable in my eyes :)

On monday afternoon, I'm taking them to the Airman's Attic, they're having a little Christmas party and the lady asked if I wanted to bring the kids along, I think they have Santa there and give out gifts to the kids...should be cute.

I have a couple more errands to run today, gotta head to the post office and get some gas in my car etc....I really don't want to go out there in the rain, my pants always get soaking wet on the bottom and it just feels yucky.

Anyway I have to get on out of here, the recipe for today's 12 Days of Baking, is already posted at Full Bellies.....Toffee Butter Crunch. YUMMY!!!

Have yourselves a wonderful day, and I'll be coming around the mountain lol later, to visit your blogs. :)

12 Days of Baking - Day 1 - Brownie Bombs
12 Days of Baking - Day 2 - White Chocolate Snowdrift Cake
12 Days of Baking - Day 3 - Toffee Butter Crunch

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

BRRRR......it is SO cold!!!!

So it's cold AND rainy outside, for some reason the combination of the two really grates on my nerves LOL

Come on in and sit with me, I have hot coffee and french toast, all ready for you. I really do enjoy chatting in the morning, and it's always like sitting around the kitchen table with a good friend, just catching up and laughing and being silly.

Yesterday I got my new baby, and I "llooooooveeeeeee it" *insert singing here*
Yes I know I'm lucky, because I get to drive it already instead of having to wait until christmas, but you see I have a very valid point for it....*snort*......I have no other vehicle to drive around in....see??? isn't that a good point??? I think it is.

Anyway, you want to see the new family baby, or actually MY new baby?


Isn't she a beauty??? It looks like a dark blue but it's actually purple....I'm just so thrilled, I want to drive it everywhere LOL
I don't care if it's raining or snowing, I just want to get in and drive....is that a bad thing? LOL

Anyway, I just have to say that I love my hubby, he is just the greatest ever...love you honey!!!

So I see that alot of you liked the idea of my 12 Days of Baking, so I guess I'll continue on then, I didn't know if many of you would be interested at all, and it's not like you "have" to bake anything but I thought it would be a fun idea to give you a new recipe each day in case something catches your eye. Like today's recipe, it's called "White Chocolate Snowdrift Cake", it's SO good and it looks pretty too, just perfect for Christmas.

I'll be posting the list of recipes each day, and I'll just add to it as we go, but look for that list at the end of each of my posts here.

I have a couple of errands to run this morning, just waiting for hubby to finish getting ready, we have to run by Walmart first to pick up the photos that the kids took with Santa. It's always funny trying to convince Nicholas to get up there by Santa. LOL
To be perfectly honest I would be terrified too, this huge man all in red with a huge beard and beady eyes staring down at you....it's scary I tell you.

I have to cut this one short, hubby is ready and we need to get going....have a wonderful tuesday everyone :)

12 Days of Baking - Day 1 - Brownie Bombs
12 Days of Baking - Day 2 - White Chocolate Snowdrift Cake

Monday, December 11, 2006

Quick, get in here!!!!

The video I picked for this morning is actually one of my kids favorites. They LOVE LOVE LOVE Crazy Frog, I don't think I've ever heard them laugh as hard as when they watch this Frog on TV. So enjoy it ;) If the video doesn't start on it's own, just click the play button on it ok?



IT.IS.FREEZING outside!!! I am not kidding you, if you step outside you will be turned into a very pretty popsicle. Now I don't know about you, but that's not how I want to spend Christmas. LOL

I don't have to leave the house today, my poor little Jasmine spent the whole weekend sick with a cold and she's still running a bit of a fever, so I decided that it's best to keep her home today and have her well enough to return tomorrow instead of sending her today and have her get worse and then miss the rest of the week of school.
There seems to be a lot of colds and stomach bugs going around....Lord give us health and strength to dodge the next ones headed our way.

So come in and sit with me, let's have a chat before I head out on my Morning Blog Drive....I'm lucky that my Blog Mobile can sustain freezing temperatures, it was created just so I can visit you all no matter WHAT the weather is like.

On my search for the Christmas presents and trying to keep to ones that the kids will love BUT won't lead to Bankruptcy, I actually found one that they've wanted for a while and it's cheap. The I-Dog!!!



It's so cute and it has the sort of things that call attention to kids, the flashing pretty lights, the movements and the sounds etc. But there's a big plus for me too, I don't have to clean up after this puppy, now THAT is a winner!!! LOL

I'll let you know what else I find, so prepare yourselves because until Christmas I may just flood you with toy ideas.

One thing I'm going to do the next 12 days, is share Christmas Baking Recipes on my Food Blog....so what do you say? Are you up for it? You think you can handle 12 days of cookies and yummie's? The first one that I'm sharing today is called Brownie Bombs and you can check out the recipe at "Full Bellies Happy Kids". They are SO good!!!

I don't have much time left to chat, with one of the kids sick you know how clingy they get. So I thought I would just bring to your attention some of the great posts going on all over Blogland. So sit back and look at what you have to enjoy today:

5 Minutes for Mom - For the past few weeks, the wonderful ladies there have been bringing us product reviews to help us with our christmas shopping. Today they're sharing some great ones for the dad's....I'm SO SO glad because I have the hardest time trying to shop for my husband, and he's always the last on my list for that same reason. Go on over and check out their reviews and suggestions :)

Big Blueberry Eyes - I have to tell you, I LOVE little Kayla she is just the sweetest little thing and she does the funniest things that always crack me up....today if you're looking for an alternate use for your Christmas Stockings, run over to Michelle's blog and check out what Kayla did LOL

Faith, Hope and Love - Sarah is one of my favorite friends in blogland, she's just such a sweet and caring Christian Lady :) If you are looking for some great books to read, go on over and check out Sarah's "TO BE READ" list....some lady is going to be extremely busy after the holidays LOL

Seeds from my Garden - I love Morning Glory, she's an amazing lady and truly inspiring to me. If you missed her "Christmas Tree Treasures" post, you have got to go back and read it, it's great seeing all the wonderful ornaments and the special memories attached to them.

Looneybin4sure - Liz cracks me up....she is just one of those ladies that inspire you all around, she's a christian, she's a great mom, but Lordy she CRACKS.ME.UP LOL she always shares the funniest cartoons, go and check out her latest with santa LOL

My Quiet Corner - Love this lady too, she's wonderful. She's going through a bit of a hard time right now, I'm sure most of you remember when all of blogland pulled together to pray for her sweet daughter during her surgery....well they are in need of prayers again, so please please go on by and say one for them.

And that my friends is it, I really need to get going, I'm sure there's a ton more interesting posts being shared and I'm hoping to come around all of you, if I don't make it to some this morning, I'll definitely do it later this afternoon when the kids take a nap.

Have a wonderful monday, oh and don't forget that today is "Menu Plan Monday", Laura is waiting for you all to come by and share your wonderful meals :)

God Bless,



For dinner tonight we're having "Bacalhau a Gomes de Sa" or Salt Cod. I just got a package from South Africa, it's funny how my family always knows to send me Bacalhau because it's one of the things I MOST miss.




Rachael Ray
Dean Cain. Also: holiday floral arrangements by Todd Oldham; advice on dealing with ill-mannered children.
General Hospital
Jason and Lulu convince Spinelli to return to Port Charles with them.

Wife Swap
A Kentucky mother of two who's devoted to children's beauty pageants trades places with a Pennsylvania artist who shuns makeup.
Supernanny
A stay-at-home mom struggles to raise four children (ages 2, 5, 6 and 7), and when her truck-driver husband returns after several days on the road, he doesn't fare much better.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

I'm finally able to drag myself around......


Good morning everyone, and yes it IS a good morning for me, I'm able to walk around without being bent over and in pain. It's been tough this week, and even tougher trying to keep up with the kids and get Jasmine to school. Who knew that driving could be so hard when you're so sick huh??? LOL

Not just the feeling of nausea but my body was soooooo sore from being so weak.

But thankfully, with the Lord's help and YOUR prayers, I'm feeling a lot better this morning, can't say 100 % but I know it will take a few more days for me to jump back into my normal routine. Thank you all so much for the well wishes and the prayers, you ladies are just amazing and always there ready to jump in and help in any way :)
I'm truly blessed to have found such amazing friends online!

I'm SO scared of eating now, isn't that something you never thought you would hear me say???? ME, afraid of food!!!! I'm watching everything I eat, not overdoing it and not going right back to eating everything and anything.

Thanks to those who participa
ted in the Slow Cooking Thursday, I've saved all the recipes and can't wait to try them. Sorry I didn't get to go around and personally comment on them, but I promise next week I will be more than up to it.



It's cold here, even though it's 39 degrees, we have tons of ice everywhere, it's like you look outside and everything is white but instead of fluffy snow it's sheets of ice covering everything. Makes driving a pain, I tell you.

Oh and speaking of driving, I'm SO SO excited. While I was sick this whole week, my wonderful wonderful hubby went out and bought me something for christmas....you won't even know how much this means to me unless you've known me for a while because I've talked about how for the past 8 years my dream vehicle has been a Dodge Durango. Yeah yeah, you know where I'm going with this..........HE GOT ME ONE!!!!

We get to pick up my baby tomorrow, I'm THRILLED beyond words, I will probably start crying when I actually drive it home, I'm such a wuss like that. But isn't that just the most wonderful thing??? I will take pictures to show you of course.

I have so much christmas shopping to do, I have bought nothing. Yes, I know, it's a disgrace, but isn't always like this??? You make all these plans and think things will run a certain way and then out of nowhere a wrench gets thrown in. Next weekend I'll be out both saturday and sunday getting all my shopping done....can't put it off anymore or my poor children will be getting nothing for christmas.

Speaking of christmas and presents, I'm either a very unlucky person, or my kids have very expensive tastes. You remember the whole Butterscotch story, the Fur Real Pony that costs $300??? Well I think we've dodged that bullet, but then yesterday Jasmine comes running to me and saying "Oh mommy, I really really want a Zoombox"....yeah, little confused there because I have no idea what it is. After she explains to me what it does, apparently it's a projector or something, I go online to look it up. *drumroll*

$299...........

ok NOW I've had it, what is going on with toy prices these days???

Seriously, what are these toy people smoking??? Unless you live in Hollywood and are an actor making tons of money or either married to Bill Gates or Donald Trump, there is NO way that people can afford this, especially when you have more than one child.
What happened to great toys at reasonable prices???

I know I'm going to be stressing when it comes to getting their gifts, it's hard not to fall into the "overspending" habit, I mean you want to give your kids everything they wish for right??? Oh well, I'm sure things will work out.

Anyway, I would love to stay and chat for a while longer but I really don't want to overdo it, and I also have to get my car ready to be traded in tomorrow, I'm going to miss it though, it's been my baby for almost a year :)

Enjoy your sundays and stay out of this cold.

Oh I can't believe I almost forgot....Kathy, Jenny and Sarah, I got your christmas cards and I LOVE them, thank you all so much, you girls are just the best :) Made my day!!!



I'm about to go start brunch right now and then for dinner we're having Crockpot Rigatoni, it was one of the great recipes shared by the wonderful Eagles wings in my slow cooking thursday. Can't wait to try it :)




7th Heaven

Eric is late coming home but Annie refuses to look for him, relying on her faith that he is fine, so she continues to decorate the house for Christmas and keeps the rest of the family occupied while waiting for him to arrive.
Brothers and Sisters

The holidays aren't so happy when business troubles continue to plague Sarah, Tom and Saul; and Nora tries to distract her family from a difficult year.



Laundry
Finish Christmas Shopping List
Getting Car ready

Thursday, December 7, 2006

Slow Cooking Thursday!

Morning Ladies, I'm just doing a quick drive by post, I've been in bed since Tuesday night with Food Poisoning and needless to say that I feel awful, it's actually really hard to walk around because my body is killing me. I didn't want to leave you without the Slow Cooking Recipes because I so enjoy collecting all the ones you share, so here you go.....

There won't be anymore posts from me this week, hopefully on saturday if I'm feeling better. Have a great week everyone :)




Welcome to my weekly Crockpot Recipes Exchance. It's such a great way to share your favorite dishes or to learn some new ones to make for your family.
What do you think??? Do You have some great recipes to share, or perhaps you're looking for some delicious ones to give you a reason to pull out the ol' crockpot???
Time to pull out those crockpots and put them to good use. If you want to join in, just grab the banner and add your name to Mr Linky :)

The recipe I picked for today is one of my family favorites, hope you enjoy it too :)

Crockpot Stuffed Chicken Rolls




6 skinless boneless chicken breast halves
6 slices cooked ham
6 slices swiss cheese
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon sage
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 (10 ounce) can cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup chicken broth

Preparation

1. Flatten chicken.
2. Put ham and cheese on each slice.
3. Roll up and secure with toothpick.
4. Combine,flour,parm cheese, sage, paprika,salt and pepper.
5. Coat chicken, chill for 1 hour.
6. Heat oil and brown chicken rolls.
7. Put in crockpot.
8. Mix soup and broth, pour over chicken.
9. Cover and cook on low for 4 hours.

It is SO good, and you can also do it on the stove top too, takes about 25 minutes that way.....but both ways keep the chicken nice and moist which is just delicious. Enjoy!!!



Tuesday, December 5, 2006

SPORADIC POSTING AND A MEME!!!

Uggghhh I really really hate doing this, but it seems that with the holidays my posts are going to be all over the place, I may post a few days straight and then I may miss one or two.

I'm trying to be consistent, but consistency went out of the window a few weeks ago, I think it started at Thanksgiving and now it's pretty much non-existent, though I've been reassured that it should return sometime after New Year's Eve. I can't wait, can you???

Thank you all for being so sweet and continuining to comment on my blog even though I haven't had the chance to come by and see you....I do plan on visiting you all this morning, I set some time aside JUST for that.

So it's 14 degrees today, and I'm not going to complain, seems that some of you are in the negative temperatures and now you just make me feel bad for whining LOL
Oh and to my newest friend Mcewen, I won't slap you for being in California and having nice warm temperatures LOL

Anyway, yesterday the kids decided to make their Christmas Wish List....that's all fine and dandy but then I realized they both want the same thing, a Fur Real Pony........ummmm unless I rob a bank (which ain't happening), or my money tree starts working overtime (ain't happening either), there is NO WAY that I'm going to shell out $260 for each pony. That's enough to feed a small village. Ridiculous!!!!

So Jasmine asked me this morning if she can get the pony for christmas and I said "well you know it's really expensive Jasmine, it's like almost $300".....yes I like threatening my kids with dollar amounts because in their head $2 is like a bazillion and they're rich (they chant as they run around in circles)......so she calmy looks at me and says "You KNOW mommy, Santa MAKES toys, he doens't have to buy it".
What the heck do I say to that??? I think I mumbled something about him being too busy and not having enough time, I don't know, I lost myself in the "makes toys you know"....*sigh*

THAT right there is the core of the holiday stress. Not wanting to disappoint your children but trying to find your way around the ludicrous cost of toys these days.

Well ladies I'm keeping this post short, I have tons of errands to run and I want to quickly drop by your blogs and say hi....right now I have over 300 new posts in my bloglines, I can't possible wade through all of that in 10 minutes. Did I not tell you to STOP posting? LOL (just kidding, post away post away).

Have a wonderful Tuesday everyone,


The wonderful Eden, over at Air Force Family, tagged me for this meme, so here goes. Consider yourselves tagged if you read it LOL
And you better not read it and then say you didn't ok? LOL

A - Available or single: Neither, happily married
B - Best Friend: Hayley
C - Cake or Pie: Pie
D - Drink of choice: Diet Coke
E - Essential Item you use everyday: Stove
F - Favorite color: Pink
G - Gummy Bears or worms: Sour Worms
H - Hometown: Lourenco Marques, Mozambique
I - Indulgence: Caramel Treasure Chocolates....*drool*
J - January or February: Ummm August???? (my b-day lol) ok ok, I will say January lol
K - Kids & Names: Jasmine and Nicholas
L - Life is Incomplete Without? The Lord and my family
M - Marriage Date: August 1998
N - Number of Siblings: 3 brothers and 1 sister
O - Oranges or Apples: neither
P - Phobias or Fears: Claustrophobia
Q - Fave Quote: Don't have one sorry
R - Reason to Smile: My children
S - Season: Spring
T - Tag 3 or 4 people: I said wasn't going to...so just consider yourselves tagged lol
U - Unknown Fact about Me: I'm a HUGE fan of anything paranormal...shocker huh?
V- Vegetable You Don't Like: Beets
W - Worst Habit: Annoying my husband
X - Xrays: Chest and Wrist
Y - Your Fave Food: Seafood
Z - Zodiac Sign: Leo, but I don't pay attention to horoscopes or any of that astrology mumbo jumbo

Sunday, December 3, 2006

16 DEGREES PEOPLE....IT'S 16 DEGREES!!!!

I can't believe that it's THAT cold outside. Well yeah I can but I choose not to, guess that it's the denial thing you know. If I didn't see it, it isn't true???

Unfortunately I went outside to put out the trash and almost ended up on my toosh. There's a thin sheet of very slippery ice covering my front porch. It's really sneaky isn't it? I mean at first glance it looks like nothing is there and then you set your foot down and are suddenly transported to an ice rink, just that you're wearing slippers and sweat pants instead of Ice Skates.

Anyway, come on in and sit with me. I have some Hot Caramel Truffle Coffee (it's so good) and I have some Butter Croissants too. I always feel like I'm sitting at one of those French Patisseries, watching the people walk by while I sip on my wonderful coffee and bite into the flaky crust of the Croissant. Well, there's nothing french about me or my house but we can still daydream right??

So yesterday I went to get groceries and then we decided to pick up a Christmas Tree. Now remember I had said we had decided on getting a real one this year because our artificial one was so old and falling apart??? I've always preferred the real ones anyway, I just love the smell of pine and the look of a real tree.....but we ended up picking up another artificial tree, prelit with white lights, and I have to tell you I'm really happy with it, it's beautiful.



We spent the rest of the day decorating and listening to Christmas Music, just hanging out and enjoying the warmth of the house and the Christmasy atmosphere.

I always get melancholy around the holidays and in one minute I am smiling and excited and then I'm down and holding back the flood gates. It's just a hard thing to to be away from family during the holidays and it seems that we never get to celebrate with anyone. Well last year we had Curt's mom and brother here and that was great, but this year, we're back to just us four, at least Curt isn't deployed right now and I don't have to spend it alone with the kids again.

But moving on, I plan on doing laundry today and some housecleaning, I also have this awesome Crockpot Lasagna planned for today. It's a recipe that was shared by Mary Ann over at "Two Many Cooks In The Kitchen", can't wait to try it.

I know there's a lot of new happenings in Blogland, some Christmas Tours of Homes and other fun stuff, and I so wish I could participate, but I am not even going to say I'll try, I just know it won't happen. Hopefully I'll get some time to go visit and see everyone that is participating, but as things stand now, I'm not sure.

I wish I had time to chat more, but I really don't, my house needs attention and besides that, I'm freezing, I can't even feel my toes. Boy it's going to be a cold winter.

Hope you're all staying warm and having fun, wish I was back in South Africa, they are having a wonderful hot summer, I still remember for Christmas we used to have BBQ's....how fun is that???

Friday, December 1, 2006

It's getting Christmasy in here.....you feel it???

So what do you think??? I want something Christmasy but I'm not really a big fan of the red and green and stuff, makes it seem too dark. Right??? LOL

I thought this was perfect and it's definitely getting me in the mood for Christmas, hence what I'll be doing this weekend, decorating and putting up the tree.

Is it just me or do some of the Artificial Tree prices seem ludicrous??? I mean, have you all seen the commercial for that RETRO tree, just because it's colored lights it costs $199....say WHAT?!?!?! I'm sorry but I would rather buy one of the 7' tall with the white lights on for $75 and use the rest of the money for gifts. I'm just saying!!!

I love the holidays and I love Christmas in particular, nothing like baking cookies and hanging decorations and wrapping presents, remembering the real reason behind Christmas and talking about Jesus with the kids. BUT, I can't stand how everything has become so commercialized, it's crazy how much money people spend during this season. I mean, I've seen people spend $500 on each kid. Why is my question???

I understand if you have the money for it, by all means do it, but I am talking mostly about the people who get into debt just to spend thousands of dollars on stuff that within the first week after christmas, the kids don't remember exist. I'm talking from experience people, I know what it's like. I've also been sucked into the big spending and tons of toys and then sit there quietly and *in shock* while the kids are more distracted in playing with the empty boxes these toys came in. Isn't there a place that makes just pretty boxes that we can buy for them??? Someone point me in that direction please!!!

While we're on the subject of presents, let's not forget to take our annual "How to open a toy package 101", believe me, if you are new to parenting, this is a MUST TAKE CLASS!!!
Yep, see all the parents nodding their heads yes??? There's nothing worse than having the kids all excited about a new toy and then making them sit there for 30 minutes while you pry and prod and cut and chew on the little twisty things and then you can never find the screw driver to remove the screws. HELLO?!?!?! Why are there even screws on these things??? LOL

Anyway, moving on. We have had some real snow here, it started last night but unfortunately by this morning it was melting again....come on now, can we just have some good snow for Christmas?? Is there anything better than a White Christmas?

Even though things have been so crazy here, I have managed to send off the first batch of Christmas Cards, I still have some more to mail, but at least I'm doing it. It's not the first year that I end up not sending a single one and then I feel awful.

Well I have tons of laundry to do and mopping and that fun home stuff, so I better skidaddle on out of here. I hope you're all enjoying your friday....I for one get giddy at the thought of sleeping in tomorrow. Isn't it funny how our perspectives change when we become parents??? Sleeping in is a GOOD DAY for the parents LOL

God Bless,