Tuesday, April 30, 2013

You know that moment.....

when you find a show on TV that grabs your attention and you are hooked from the very first episode, and can't stop watching?

When you put on one episode and then it ends and you think, just one more, and then just one more, and then you look at the clock and it's way past your bedtime, and then the following day you find yourself squeezing in as much of the show as you can while you go about your day?

You do know that moment right?

Well I've had that happen with a few shows before, like Buffy the Vampire Slayer, when I decided to watch the whole thing in one sitting over a weekend, and I was up in bed with my laptop and the lights off while the whole house was asleep, long into the early hours of the night.

And then there was the Doctor Who time last year when we decided to rewatch everything from the very beginning, and spent weekends on the couch eating popcorn and going from episode to episode to episode.

I hadn't had this happen in a while, but yesterday it bit me again.  This time with the show Fringe.

I sometimes feel like I'm the last to the party, like everyone was already there and had a blast and have moved on to bigger and better things, and there I come, all happy, months or years behind.  Hahahah

I had been wanting to watch it for a while, kept putting it off, and then yesterday it popped up on my Netflix saying it was now available for Instant Streaming.  I figured, well might as well go ahead and give it a shot.

5 minutes in and I was hooked, and hour later and I was shushing people around me as they got ready for bed, and then finished watching it after everyone was asleep.

This morning I got up, rushed through my morning chores and started episode 2, and then I had to keep pausing and stopping so I could deal with that pesky thing called "life".  lol

But I did manage to watch the second episode which only got me even more hooked, and after dinner I watched the third episode with hubby who is now just as hooked as I am.

Now I'm about to watch at least one or two before bedtime.  Oh I can't wait.

Wow and I just realized that I blabbed about this without even showing you any pictures of my day.  Things did get done, chores were accomplished and even a special breakfast prepared, and I have photos to prove it....


Breakfast preparation, something special for the kids. Another yummy recipe revisited, Breakfast Delights.

Breakfast Delights

These are SO good. Definitely not something to have everyday, but YUM.

I got laundry all folded and put away while I watched episode 2, watered the yard, harvested some herbs, swept and tidied up.

Checked the mail, and found two new books for review. I've been looking forward to both of these.


A little afternoon break....


And then a delicious dinner with the family, this lovely Beef Stew with Potato Dumplings that had been cooking away in the crockpot all day :)

Beef Stew with Potato Dumplings

Alright but now I must scramble if I want to get any Fringe watching in. Can't stay up too late as the kids and I have Dentist appointments in the morning.

Have a blessed night everyone :)

Monday, April 29, 2013

Happy Homemaker Monday - 04/29/2013

Happy Homemaker Monday

Well that was a fast weekend, wasn't it????  Blink of an eye and it's Saturday morning, then blink of an eye and it's Monday morning.  Goodness!!!

Alrighty, so another week ahead, hope it's a good one for you all :)

The weather.....
We are officially in the triple digits, and I wish I could say it's just temporary but last week saw triple digits, this week again and knowing Arizona well, it will continue all year long.  Oh boy....not sure I'm ready for this heat.

Right now I am....
Enjoying my coffee, writing this post, watching my husband get ready for work.  

About all the housework I plan on doing today, about the menu plan I need to come up with and a bunch of other things......creative wise, projects and ideas swirling around in my mind. 

On my reading pile....

Still reading "Jane Austen ruined my life".  I am loving this book and can't wait to read the next two in the series.

On my TV.....
The list may look like a lot, but it doesn't mean that I'm watching them ALL the same day. I do get a lot of my viewing done when I'm working, either ironing or folding laundry, or working on the menu plan etc. But this is just a list of what I'm currently enjoying on TV.

The Village
Helicopter Rescue
Food Glorious Food

Haunted Collector
Deep South Paranormal
The Dead Files
Da Vinci Demons

Blog hopping (newly discovered blog)....
Tilly and the Buttons - Tilly was one of the contestants on The Great British Sewing Bee, and I just loved her style.  She has a blog and I'm so glad I found it last week, I've been enjoying reading it and seeing what she's up to.

On the menu for this week....
Only have today and tomorrow's meals up. Have to work on the new menu plan this afternoon :)

Monday 29th
Bacon, Toast, Coffee and Juice
Grilled Cheese and Pepperoni Sandwiches, Veggie Tray
Dad's Favorite Chicken, Basmati Rice
Tuesday 30th

Breakfast: Cereal, Milk
Lunch: Chicken Noodle Soup
Dinner: Portuguese Pork Chops and Potatoes

On my to do list....
Change Bed Linens
Vacuum, Mop
Menu plan and Grocery List

In the craft basket....
Red, white and blue quilt
Crochet Ripply Blanket

Looking forward to this week....
Not one thing in particular, just hoping for a good week for us all :)   Wednesday morning we have dentist appointments.

Looking around the house....
Both kids are still fast asleep.  Hubby is off at work.  I have the pug girls fast asleep on the couch, and the only sounds emanating through the house are their snoring and the water in the fish tank.
Need to clear out the kitchen table because as usual, during the weekend, it becomes a catch all for everyone's things.  House isn't in too much of a disarray so it will be a quick pick up :)

From the camera....


On my prayer list.....
My husband, as he waits to hear if he made the next stripe.  Us as a family, as we wait to find out where we're going next, it's hard not knowing which way to turn and we're now at the point where we can't make any plans of any kind until we know what is going on.  I pray for patience for us, and I pray that the Lord continues to bless us with the feeling of calmness in knowing that He is in control and He is already waiting wherever our lives may be headed next.

Bible verse, Devotional....

Be Still Scripture | Wall Decals

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Sewing and Miss Austen!

I'm such a hopeless Jane Austen Fan.  I don't think I can quite get enough of anything Austen related.

I can sit for hours and watch documentary after documentary,  watch and rewatch the movies, the sequels, the prequels, the adaptations and anything that remotely relates to her books and her life.

Everyone that knows me, knows that I am totally irrevocably in love with Jane Austen.  In a non creepy way, of course.

Today was one such day.  I just couldn't get her off my mind, and so,  while I went about my business, I had a number of documentaries playing on the laptop.

The Many Lovers of Miss Jane Austen, was a documentary that played on BBC back in 2011.  Amanda Vickery takes a look back at Austen's life, at her fans and what exactly makes everyone love this author so much.

Funny thing, if you had to ask me for the one reason why I am so obsessed with her, I wouldn't be able to answer.  There isn't just one single thing that stands out, other than the fact that I find her to have been such a brilliant writer.  I guess in a way, every single novel reiterates the beauty of love, and the fact that you CAN find that amazing connection without it having to resort to sexual connotations to get the point across.

She has the knack to draw you right in, to make you feel a part of the story, to root for the characters, to dream about that Mr. Darcy.  And don't pretend you haven't, I know you have.  LOL

The second documentary I watched was The Real Jane Austen.  This one is presented by Anne Chancellor who played Caroline Bingley in the 1995 version of Pride and Prejudice, who so happens to be her great aunt from 8 generations ago.  How amazing is that???

Fascinating documentaries which only served to bring forth a renewed craving for anything Austen related, which means pulling out some of my favorite books.....


IT is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife.

However little known the feelings or views of such a man may be on his first entering a neighbourhood, this truth is so well fixed in the minds of the surrounding families, that he is considered as the rightful property of some one or other of their daughters.

Oh just to read those first few words send joy through me, like nothing else.

I can't possibly be the only one who feels this way, I'm sure many of my blog readers share this love for Jane Austen.

But let me show you what else I did today.....


Worked on some new sheer curtains for the living room, they are hung up but are far too long for my liking, so tomorrow I'll be measuring, pinning and hemming the curtains so that they don't pool on the floor.


Sewed a little more on my new quilt, and I'm not being very strict with this one, I'm basically just sewing strips and adding them as I go and letting the pattern work itself out.


And as I add a few strips, I hang it on the clothesline so that I can see how it's coming along, and because I love seeing it flutter in the wind, if nothing else.


Tended to the garden and harvested a little more parsley which I used for dinner. If you don't grow your own herbs, you have no idea what you're missing out on. Truth be told for many years, I didn't either, and now I just couldn't imagine cooking any other way.


You need parsley, basil, or thyme or rosemary or mint or whatever, just step outside the back door and pick some fresh. It makes a world of difference.


I needed some for tonight's dinner, which was another old favorite, Smothered Pork Chops. So yummy.


and to make my boy child happy???? Stuffing. He LOVES this stuff.


Even though it's now 8:40pm, I think I'm going to go watch Pride and Prejudice or maybe Mansfield Park.....hmmmm decisions, decisions.

What is YOUR favorite Jane Austen book or movie adaptation?

Friday, April 26, 2013

Hello everyone :)

Thank you so much for all the birthday wishes for my girl.  She had a great day, and even let me snap some pictures of her which rarely happens.


She got quite a few Doctor Who goodies, which made her very happy.


I just can't get over how big she has gotten. I know that a lot of my older readers remember when I first started blogging, she was sooooooo little :) It's fun going back and reading all those posts and seeing just how the kids have grown.


I call her my mini me LOL

So, anyway, I had a pretty good Friday, got quite a lot of things done today, but also managed to relax a bit and get some crochet in.  Nothing big because I still have my ripply blanket to work on, but just something to whip up real quick, for fun.

I did have my camera stuck to my hip today *so to speak* and snapped quite a few pics of my day.

Sometimes I wonder if it's worth it to take pictures of everything I do and post them on here, because on most days I do pretty much the same things....but then I remind myself that one day I'm going to sit back and browse through this blog and I'll enjoy having all those moments captured forever.


One of the things that I got for half price when I hosted the Pampered Chef Party, was the Cool and Serve Square Tray.  Let me tell you, I just LOVE it....love love love it.

I cut up a bunch of veggies and pop in some ranch dressing, close it and keep it in the refrigerator.  My kids love snacking on the veggies, and hey, much better than having them reach for chips or cookies right???


It's such a neat tray because it comes with these freezer inserts. If you're throwing a barbecue or just hosting a dinner party or whatever it may be, and you're going to have a veggie tray or deviled eggs out for a while, this is perfect. It keeps it cold up to 6 hours OUTSIDE of the fridge.

This morning, I cut up a fresh batch of veggies, and I'm sure it will all be gone in about two days, so I'll just up some more and keep restocking the tray.

When I was done with that, I also got some fresh bread going.


Had a friend of mine stop by and we stood out in my front yard chatting for quite a bit, she saw just how big my flowers are getting, which prompted me to grab a few more pics to show you.

I wish I had taken a pic of the sunflower because goodness gracious, it is HUGE.




and this next one is not really a flower, but I just love palm trees, they are so beautiful in my opinion



Have you ever just stopped and looked, really looked at how God created these things?  The intricate designs, the colors, the textures, it is beyond anything that I could ever imagine.  Just magnificent.

Even a simple drop of water, it is stunning on it's own.


Here's my little crochet project


and funny enough my friend brought me over a Crochet Afghan book which is filled with really neat projects.



I'm using up my bits of cotton yarn that I have left from dishcloths. I think I need to restock my cotton stash soon :)

Switched out my curtains in the kitchen, took down the white ones and replaced them with these pretty florals I made a while ago.


After a couple hours of rising, the bread was baked and pulled out and..................oh is there anything like fresh bread from the oven????


Well, maybe some Deep Dish Sausage Pizza? This is sooooo good. Remember I told you all that these past two weeks I have been revisiting old favorites from my blog?

Deep Dish Sausage Pizza

I had completely forgotten about this one, it was posted back in 2006, actually just a few months after I started blogging. I'm so glad I found it again.

Nicholas does NOT like peppers of any kind, but he ate it all up and said it was delicious. Yay!

Now I need to go switch over my laundry, then I think I'll pick up my crochet hook again and finish off that little project.

I also have my usual Friday night shows to watch AND another one from England called Helicopter Rescue, which features Prince William who is a pilot in the RAF.  He is so handsome, and reminds me so much of his mother Princess Diana.  It's great seeing him rescue people and fly the helicopter and talk on camera about his job etc.  Very interesting.

Oh and another interesting one for those that like medical shows, well, kind of reality medical shows....Keeping Britain Alive:  The NHS in a Day is a fantastic show to watch.

And speaking of British shows, I plan on adding more shows to the Period Drama List, but I'll let you know when I do so you don't miss out.

Ok, now I'm really out, I think....lol   

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Happy Birthday Jasmine!

Day 41

Oh what a ride it's been with this child LOL

14 years ago, I was a young newlywed, giving birth to my first child.  It was such a scary experience and nothing with that birth went right, I was exhausted by the time she came out, but what joy to see that beautiful little face.

And now here we are, with a 14 year old.  This quirky, independent, self assured, strong personality, hilarious girl.

It's not always easy, but then I think any mom with a teenager knows that.   I can't even begin to let myself think that in just 2 years she'll be driving.....oh boy.

I wouldn't have it any other way though, I think my husband and I are extremely blessed with the beautiful, smart children we have.

Day 44

So I wish my daughter nothing but the best in life.  I can't wait to go along on this ride, to embark on this new journey as she continues to grow into a beautiful young lady, as we get ready to start High School and are faced with so many new adventures.

Happy Birthday Jasmine, we love you so much and are so very proud of you.

Here's a picture of her cake, this cake that made me miss out on Cooking Thursday, and has been giving me headaches for the past 3 days as batch after batch of modeling chocolate and fondant went into the trash.


After hours of working on it, it is still not right, the Arizona heat is horrible for fondant.  The minute the panels went on the cake they started drooping and pulling in all directions.

The result is a pretty wonky Tardis, but you know what?  Jasmine LOVES and I mean LOVES her cake, and that is more than enough for me :)

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Today was my off day!

Not off as in taking a break or something like that.....Off as in, everything I tried to do ended up messed up.

No kidding!

Ever have one of those days where everything goes wrong?

Crazy, but it happens sometimes, and today was one of those for me.

It didn't start off that way though, I was up bright and early with my hubby, and enjoyed a good cup of coffee.


and shortly after, a homemade english muffin with butter and wild blackberry jam


I set off to make the modeling chocolate for my daughter's birthday cake, and the very first batch.....trashed.  Chocolate seized on me and it just didn't work.


Made another batch, and the chocolate started seizing but I was able to salvage it.  In the meantime I decided that I better get a batch of Marshmallow Fondant going in case the modeling chocolate didn't pan out.   Had no issues with the last one I made for my son's birthday, but this one???

Oh boy.

At one point my kitchen table, my apron and my hands were stained blue, the darn thing was just not getting dry and remained sticky for the longest time, no matter how much powdered sugar I added.


Really, I'm serious, I am not even making this up.  

I finally got so sick of it, that I just gave it a good kneading and popped it int he fridge, and now I wait. And tomorrow morning I'll find out if I have something to work with or if I have to run to the store for emergency ingredients. Hahah

A little while later Jasmine got up, and walked into the kitchen like this. Hahahah


If you're a Whovian like we are, you will understand the meaning of this.

After having some issues, or rather, lots of issues with cake preparations, I pulled out the sewing machine so that I could get cracking on the gift I am making for her.

But I should have known that my streak of weird luck was not yet quite done.  I started sewing the head for the Minecraft Ghast and didn't even realize that I had picked up the wrong pieces, so ended up having to pull it all apart.

At this point in the day, I decided I really needed to just stop, sit down, and be still so as not to cause further damage to anything LOL

So I settled for a nice cup of tea and some toast, it did hit the spot :)


I read a little more of my current book "Jane Austen Ruined my Life", and I also watched two more episodes of "Keeping Britain Alive:  The NHS in a Day".

I guess I subconsciously knew that today would be a lost day, because yesterday I got all my housework done, laundry all washed, ironed and put away, floors mopped and vacuumed etc.  It did feel nice to relax, and especially with these crazy allergies going on.

When dinner time came around, I was almost scared of even trying to cook for fear that I may burn something.  Luckily I didn't, but I did have a moment too LOL 

Brought the water to boil, and then dumped in the tortelline, turned OFF the stove and walked away.  No words!

A hot mess is what I was today, so I'm glad it's over and I can look forward to a better tomorrow right???

By the way, here is what we had for dinner, Tortellini Alfredo, as always you can find the recipe on the food blog.

Tortellini Alfredo

I have 19 Kids and Counting, Deadliest Catch, and the final of the Great British Sewing Bee to watch tonight while I work a few more rows on the ripply blanket.

Better get on out of here :)