Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Oprah Winfrey's School in South Africa!

I don't think I have to tell anyone that I love Oprah and I truly admire everything she's done for everyone. While watching tv last night, I happened to get lucky enough to catch her special on the school she built in South Africa. It hit close to home, it pulled at my heart strings because I got to see my home again and shed tears for what I miss and for this country that I adore seeing all these amazing human beings, fighting through adversity and huge obstacles to make it through life.

It seems to me that not a lot of people are aware of the beauty that is South Africa, I mean I still come across some that believe I lived in a hut surrounded by bush and constantly being threatened by lions. It's not so AT.ALL!!!

I cried my eyes out last night and I still tear up just writing this. I fell in love with the little girls featured on the show, the hardships they have endured and the fighting spirit they have. One asked Oprah "Am I good enough to be in your school?"....heartbreaking, the thought that she was not good enough because she's poor or has had a tough life.

Isn't that what we all ask ourselves though??? I know I do, I'm constantly asking myself if I'm good enough for this or that, am I good enough of a mother, a good enough wife, daughter, sister, granddaughter, friend and most importantly AM I A GOOD ENOUGH CHRISTIAN. WOW!!!!
Am I???

So I had to talk about it today, my fears and my worries. Faced with the fact that as much as I love South Africa I can never go back to living there, having my children raised there, feeling safe. It breaks my heart and makes me cry for that beautiful country. I miss it, actually to say I miss it doesn't come close to expressing my true feelings....there's a burning and yearning to go back home, to see the place I grew up in, my old schools, the homes I lived in, the vacation spots we went to.

But I can't, not to permanently live.....I can't bring myself to do it and that realization kills me. It's one of the saddest things I've ever had to admit to myself. South Africa will always be home to me, no matter where I go or what I do.

So if you haven't seen the Oprah Winfrey Special, I ask that you do, I think you won't be disappointed and I KNOW that you will cry for those beautiful girls, I do.

Moving on though, the weather continues to wreak havoc over here, we woke up to tons of snow again but now it's all melted and the sun is shining, not a cloud in the sky. It's weird and it's unnerving to me, it's like a sign of the times or something. LOL

Last night I was going to the store and next thing I know my Check Engine light came on....I panicked turned around and headed back home. I was soooo soooo sad, this is my baby, my new car, my wonderful Durango that I've wanted for 9 years and now here I was thinking that something was very wrong with it. I told Curt what was going on and he went out and checked....couldn't figure out exactly what the problem was.

I was resigned to walking Jasmine to school and back, in the snow, with a whiny 3 year old complaining that he wants to go back home now "to play Mario Kart". Yes, that's what he is into now. But anyway, I went to bed last night and I prayed and I asked God to give me some sort of sign on what could be wrong with the car and that he knew I needed it, but I was going to leave it all in his hands and be calm knowing he would take care of us.

This morning hubby got up an hour earlier to fix my car (I love you honey), he came upstairs at 5:30 am and told me the car was fixed. He suddenly realized that it could be the Anti-Freeze and when checked, yep, the lid was not on tight and it seems it evaporated. He refilled it and the check engine light went off.....my baby was back to normal. Thank you God.

Tomorrow I'm working on my bedroom, I'm still trying to work all this Spring Cleaning in around my other stuff. We have dentist appointments and other errands coming up in the next few days so it's bound to get crazy again.....but I'm standing firm and keeping at it. It's always the getting started that is tougher for me because once I'm cleaning then everything flows and I enjoy it.

Well I'm out of here, I have things to do, places to go and children to take care of. Have a blessed day,

Monday, February 26, 2007

Good Morning :)

Come on in and sit with me, I have hot coffee and donuts and I even have blueberry donut holes. Yep, can you see I must have raided the local Donut Shop, but I really didn't, the problem is that the Commissary had the BAD IDEA of stocking up on Krispi Kreme donuts, I mean really, do they NOT know what a temptation it is and how badly it affects my thighs???

Anyway, come on in, let's talk about the crazy weather we've been having. I have to tell you, I woke up to tons of snow yesterday, everything was white...within an hour it was gone, melted completely and there was not a cloud in the sky, thinking that was it for the day I rounded up the kids and headed to the commissar
y for a few things. On the way out to the car it starts raining really hard and before I even got the kids in it was hailing...YES PEOPLE hailing!!!

Got home, it rained really hard for 10 minutes, then the sun broke through again.....very very mean to tease like this because within an hour we were back to snowing LOL
I'm not joking, the weather was absolutely ridiculous yesterday, so I'm hoping for a normal day today, wish me luck.

Isn't that Vince Gill song just the best??? I've always loved Vince but this song has to be one of my favorites so far.....it's just beautiful :)

Anyway, I've spent the weekend cleaning, or rather, Spring Cleaning. Curt is working 12 hour shift for the next 2 weeks, which includes weekends, poor guys are exhausted already. While he's at work I've found that it's easier for me to really get going with the cleaning, that way I don't miss him as much, plus I don't have to sit around being bored because he's not here. Works out I guess.

I got both kids rooms completely organized and ended up with 5 trash bags of toys to give away, and mind you, they're all "my favorite". Isn't it amazing that they don't even remember half the toys until you threaten to get rid of them??? All of a sudden that one toy hiding in the back of the closet is "my favorite of all, I love it"....and excuse me but what the heck is up with all these toys missing legs and arms and half of their bodies???

So yes, I took their "favorites" and tossed them out, not really, I'm taking them to Airman's Attic, they're in good shape just don't ever get acknowledged unless Spring Cleaning comes around.

Both kids rooms are completely reorganized and cleaned up, will see how long it lasts. My bedroom is done too, my kitchen and dining area are both done and now all I have left is the living room, computer area and then going through mine and Curt's clothes.

When we first got married we purchased those cheap dressers, I mean, we didn't have much money to toss around and needed a place to store clothes, so it sounded like a good idea. The problem with these cheap dressers is that within a year or two, they started falling apart. The bottoms come off, so you constantly have to reinsert them, the knobs fall off and they're just a plain ol' pain in the butt.

I'm in the process of moving all our clothes to an armoire and getting rid of the dressers, it's a lot of work, but hey, I'm up for it. Am I the only crazy one that loves cleaning??? LOL

I don't have much planned for today, I've been fighting this really annoying sinus congestion/infection or whatever it is....so I'm laying low and doing nothing today. Feels good sometimes.

Before I can just sit back and relax though, I do need to get some paperwork filed, so I'm going to get started on that. Hope you all have a wonderful monday, I'll see you tomorrow,

God Bless,

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Good morning everyone, since I had no opportunity to do this post on friday, I thought I would take you on a weekend trip. So let's head out, grab your bags and let's head to Port Elizabeth in South Africa.

It was one of my favorite places to go on vacation and I would love to take you all with me....


Port Elizabeth has about 1 million inhabitants and is located on the Indian Ocean about halfway between Cape Town and Durban. The city is beautifully set along the beautiful shores of Algoa Bay.
In and around the city you will find scenic nature trails and wildlife experiences, long golden beaches, historic heritage and a unique coastal climate: that seems like enough to come here. The calm waters of Algoa Bay, its shores lapped by the warm Indian Ocean, make Port Elizabeth a Mecca for all beach and watersport activities.

Port Elizabeth enjoys more sunshine hours and fewer rainy days than any other coastal city in South Africa. The city boasts a moderate climate all year round with sea temperatures ranging from 16 degrees C in Winter to 23 degrees C in Summer. The average temperature for Summer and Winter are 25 degrees and 17 degrees respectively - truly an ideal place to holiday! In winter, catch the supertubes at he world famous surf spot in Jeffrey´s Bay, about an hour from P.E.

Greater Port Elizabeth is a great base for exploring the Eastern Cape: the famous Garden Route, Settler Hinterland and Sunshine Coast are all within reach.

Port Elizabeth’s greatest asset is its clean and beautiful beaches. Water temperatures vary between 18 and 21 degrees Celsius during Summer and 14 to 19 degrees Celsius during Winter. The sea conditions are generally calm in the bay, except when the South Easterly wind is blowing. All beaches are patrolled by fully-trained professional life guards. Apart from the more "mainstream" sports, a temperate climate, unspoilt beaches and the warm seawater make this city perfect for thrilling watersports opportunities.

Algoa Bay boasts 40 km of magnificent beaches and, with its perfect combination of warm water, calm sea and fair breezes, it is one of the best sailing venues in the world, and a mecca for all beach and watersports enthusiasts.

The Southern Beaches offer safe and sheltered swimming, body surfing, sunbathing, boardsailing, excellent waves and surfing opportunities as well as interesting inter-tidal sealife while the Northern Beaches offer vast stretches of sand and dunes ideal for long beach walks as well as providing superb angling and swimming opportunities.


The Valley Bushveld, less than an hour from Port Elizabeth, has a higher density of animals, birds and insects than any other similar area on earth. Guides take you almost within touching distance of Africa’s legendary wild game and you can experience the sounds and sights of Africa in a malaria-free environment. The evening silence may be disturbed by the howl of the black-backed jackal and each dawn, you’ll awaken to the call of bizarre birds. Much of the vegetation consists of succulent plants, loved by elephants, rhino, kudu and other animals. And they’re on call every day.


Jeffrey’s Bay

A picturesque town only 70km from Port Elizabeth. More than 30km of unspoilt beaches and safe swimming make Jeffrey’s Bay ideal for families. This is also one of the world's best surfing spots. Its legendary Super Tubes are one of the world's top ten breaks. There are also less demanding breaks, and for first-timers, there’s a surfing school.

For dry-land sports nuts there is golf, tennis, squash, horse riding, cycling and hiking. And if you’ve never tried it, lawn bowls is a true art!

Jeffrey’s Bay is world famous for seashells — over 400 types recorded. The Shell Museum, opposite Main Beach, leads you into the amazing world of shells. Local craftsmen offer delicate shell art.

End your day at the Walskipper Restaurant. Overlooking magnificent St. Francis Bay, this one-of-a kind restaurant has a beachy and informal atmosphere. The floors are of sand, the waitresses barefoot, fires blaze and good smells drift from the ‘braai’, or barbecue. It’s an eating experience not soon forgotten.



Amaxhosa Dancers in Port Elizabeth

Seaview and Seaview Lion Park

Addo Elephant Park


You know I can never leave without sharing some yummy food from the place we're visiting. So here you go, some South African recipes just for you, enjoy :)

Hertzoggies (Cookies)

South African Recipes

Friday, February 23, 2007

Oh windows windows windows....

How I despise thee sometimes!

I'm sure you've all noticed that I didn't get my Greatest Places post up yesterday....it was not because I didn't want to or didn't get to it, it was for reasons out of my hands.

See yesterday morning I got up really early, I was done sleeping...yes done sleeping, you ever have those days where you wake up early and it feels like you've been in bed for days???
That's how I was feeling, so I snuck out of bed at 6 am and headed downstairs, got myself a cup of hot coffee and headed for the computer. I had it all planned, I was going to sit down in peace and quiet and get my travelling done, we were heading to another great location....oohhhh the possibilites.

I sat down and turned on the computer, sitting here with a silly smile on my face when out of nowhere BAM!!! ERROR....Windows has encountered an error......Windows has encountered and error.....I hit ok and it pops up again, so I hit ok again, and low and behold it comes back up again. At this point I think there was some sort of power struggle between me and the computer to see who would get the last word. Unfortunately as always, I LOST. Next thing I know I had a pretty shade of blue on my screen and my computer turned off.

Ladies I spent the rest of yesterday reinstalling windows only to realize that I had lost everything on the computer, so I'm starting from scratch, none of my old stuff on here but at least it runs really fast and really well....that's a plus right???

I've learnt to look at the bright side of things, the silver lining, instead of dwelling on the bad and negative, it's just a waste of my energy and definitely headache inducing.

Anyway, I managed to update my food blog yesterday, so if you're interested, pop on over and check out the recipes I shared. I will most likely add a few more today......curt is working 12 hour shifts due to a military exercise they're in, so it's just me and the kiddos for the next 2 weeks. I think this is when I get the most cleaning done too, mainly because I get bored with him not home so I tend to clean...well, clean more than usual I should say.

I have dishes from breakfast needing to be done, I have a floor that needs to be mopped yet again, those pesky pesky sticky spots that apparently appear out of nowhere.....I have bathrooms to clean and more laundry to conquer. I also want to change the bed linens and get some nice fresh air circulating in this house.

What is it about cleaning that gets me all excited??? I'm dying to just get in there and clean clean clean....

I also want to make a trip to the library this afternoon, so I think we'll be quite busy today.

To get in the mood for spring, I've switched out my kitchen curtains to my spring/summer ones and it feels so much better already....not to mention that my window overlooks my beautiful tulips which are ALL growing back in.

I will try to get some pictures today, if I can get my digital camera to cooperate with me that is. For some reason everytime I turn it on it doesn't want to open the shutter, go figure.
So I'm ending today's post with a Five Senses Saturday, you remember those right??? It's been forever since I've done one, so here we go:

By the way, my friend Kelli also did a Five Senses post today, so go on over and take a look, she even shares a YUMMY recipe.


- Katharine McPhee "Over It"
- Load of Laundry in the washer

- Cartoons on the tv
- Kids talking to each other

- Cars driving by


- House needing to be cleaned
- Pile of paperwork to be filed

- My Tulips coming up through the soil
- Pugs laying by the back door, soaking up the sun

- Clear blue sky


- My kids hugs

- Knife handle slicing through the onions and garlic

- The pages of my new cookbook

- The feel of the clothes I'm ironing

- Hubby's kiss on my cheek


- Portuguese Rice Pudding
- Homemade Cappucino
- Crockpot Three Beans and Sausage
- Pringles Select Szechuan BBQ Chips (YUMMY)
- Plump juicy Plum


- Sugar Cookie Scented Candle

- Rain outside

- Clothes freshly ironed
- My kids just out of the bath
- The smell of lemon after a mopped floor

Thursday, February 22, 2007

I decided to update my banner, I figured with it being a new year, we needed a new one :) Please update your banners when participating ok???

Welcome to my weekly Crockpot Recipes Exchange. 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 :)


1 whole chicken, cooked, skinned, deboned
and cut into bite size pieces
1 can cream of celery soup
1 c. sour cream
3 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
1/3 c. green chiles, chopped
1/3 c. jalapenos, chopped (if desired)
Dash of nutmeg
6 to 8 thick flour tortillas
1 (10 oz.) can green chile sauce
Monterey Jack cheese, shredded
Dash of chili powder

Mix together soup, sour cream, cream cheese, dash of nutmeg, dash of chili powder, green chiles and jalapenos. Add chicken and toss.

Spread filling on tortillas and roll up. Place in lightly greased rectangular baking dish, side by side. Cover with green chile sauce and top with shredded cheese. Cover with tin foil and bake at 350 degrees for approximately 45 minutes until hot and bubbly.

I just realized that I completely forgot to add the Crockpot Enchilada Version.......where is my head today???

I decided to give you 2 recipes, the one above because its' OH SO GOOD....and then a crockpot one. Here it is:


l lb. ground beef
1 small onion, chopped
1 pkg. super sized corn tortillas (10 in a pack)
1 med. sized can mild enchilada sauce
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 lb. sharp cheddar cheese, grated
1 can corn, drained

Cook ground beef and onion together and drain off the fat. Stir together enchilada sauce and cream of chicken soup. Cut tortillas in half. Place some sauce in the bottom of your cp. Layer 3 tortillas (6 halves) around cp and cover center. Spread out half of the beef, top with half of the corn, pour sauce on to cover and then sprinkle with one third of the cheese. Do another layer the same way then top with the rest of the tortillas, cover with sauce and sprinkle with the rest of the cheese. You can also toss in some sliced olives in you'd like. I cooked mine on 5 1/2 hours low and then the another 45 minutes on high and it was perfect. (I think my cp is a 5 qt. one and it is round).

Monday, February 19, 2007

And the sun shines through.........

how I missed it, I have to tell you I'm so ready for spring and summer to come. I do like all 4 seasons but spring and summer are such a nice welcome after the dreary long and cold winter season.

I'm running kinda late today, hence my blog post not being up first thing in the morning. Since I have some time before General Hospital starts, I figured I would come and say hi.

Jasmine is enjoying being home today but Jimminy Cricket, do kids EVER stop bickering??? It's about everything, one looks at the other, one picked the same kind of cereal, one wants to
watch tv but the other wants to play video games...never ends.

I'm hoping *fingers crossed* that I can start my Spring Cleaning tomorrow, I think my house really desperately needs it, and actually so do I. Isn't it amazing how much better it feels around you when things are clean and orderly and you don't have to look around to find toys on the living room floor (though I doubt that ever dissipates while they're young), paperwork waiting to be filed, closets needing to be reorganized.....so yep, I've set my mind to it and I'm hoping to start tomorrow.

Sometimes I wonder if I obsess about these things a bit too much....but then I remember that my home is my sanctuary, it's MY little corner of the universe and my ONE spot where it's up to me to make it welcome and cozy and comfortable. I want my family to look forward to coming home at the end of a school or work day.

Me, well, I'm already here, taking care of the family, cooking meals, doing laundry and cleaning the house, decorating (or trying to), paying bills and just taking care of everything and everyone in general. I LOVE doing it, I think from a very young age I knew I wanted to be a mommy and wife, so I'm living my dream. BUT, there are days like today that I just want to sit and relax and not lift a finger and that's acceptable too.

Now before I go on, I have to tell you run on over to my dear friend Sarah's new blog....she always has the BEST ones, and this one is sure to have me jumping up and down with joy. It's called A Bend in the Road and it's all things Anne of Green Gables.....*GASP*
Are you kidding me??? I will sleep, eat and breathe Sarah's blog, which could be a good thing
and a bad thing at the same time. But anyway, just go and say hi and see what she's got up.

Alright now, I'm going to put up this week's menu on my food blog later, and I'll link it to Laura's "Menu Plan Monday", though I'm wondering what is going on, I think ever since she got all those people participating my link seems to get lost LOL
I mean, I got 2 comments on it last week...yeah two comments from the almost 100 participating...hmmmmm maybe I wasn't making yummy food, hopefully this new menu appeals to more LOL

One thing I've been missing out on is having more time to sit down and read. I'm a bookaholic, and I'm not happy unless I have a good book sitting on my bedside table, just waiting to be read. There's something about picking up the book and smelling the pages....wait, you DO all smell the book pages too don't you???
It's not just me right???

Anyway, if you like Christian books I think you would love reading Lori Wick, she is just amazing. I am busy with her English Garden Series and I'm just loving them. Wonderful wonderful books about romance and finding the love of your life but also finding the wonderful relationship with God.

See my bookshelf to the left??? The bottom shelf is just cookbooks and the next 3 shelves are full of books I have yet to read, but don't think it means i don't grab others at the library or the bookstore....*snort*

Well ladies, I need to get going, I have kids to deal with, the constant fighting is giving me a huge headache. I also need to get dinner started soon and finish off the laundry so I can get it all put away before my shows tonight....speaking of shows....I usually watch Wife Swap but seriously tonight's previews make me want to hurl *GAG*, not sure if I can stomach watching that.

Have yourselves a wonderful night,

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Can I send some Rain your way????

It's one of those great long weekends!!!

I know a lot of people usually make big plans and go somewhere fun, but we usually stay home instead of going out into traffic and confusion. Nothing like staying home and relaxing while the rain pours outside.

I don't think I've seen this much rain in a long time.....you wake up and it's raining, you go to sleep hearing the lull of the raindrops hitting the roof while you lay snug in bed. I LOVE that!!!

Did you guys watch Grey's Anatomy on thursday night???
OH.MY.GOODNESS!!! I have yet to find a show that is so heartbreaking, I've actually starting keeping my Kleenex nearby when I watch it. The cast is amazing and the stories are so good, I just can't wait for next week.

I've been getting my Spring Cleaning list ready so that this week I can start on it. I have to get it done around dentist and WIC appointments, school functions etc. Does it ever stop???
Gone are the days where I can look around and think "boy I'm bored is there NOTHING to do?"...now it's more like "boy I could really use a nap".

I'm happy that my laundry is caught up though, not exactly put away, but it's clean and folded, some of it ready to be ironed and then I guess I'll spend the day tomorrow putting it away. Glad hubby is home so I can do it without little hands coming in behind me and unfolding all the laundry.

There's something wonderful about the smell of clean laundry isn't there???
Those warm fluffy towels straight out of the dryer, though I have to tell you, one thing I truly miss about home is hanging the clothes out to dry.
To me there is something unbeatable about that smell of crisp clean sheets drying in the warm sun....it's like a special scent to it, one you can't quite recreate using dryer sheets and an inside dryer.

But enough about towels and sheets, right now I'm sitting here while waiting for my Pork Roast to finish cooking, it's been sitting on the stove for 2 hours and the smell permeating the air is amazing. Every once in a while I hear from one of the kids or hubby "mmmm is it ready yet?".....though I think that last time it was actually me asking the question. Roast is a comfort food for me and perfect for a dark cloudy rainy day.
For dessert we're having some fresh strawberries and whipped cream.

Oh I almost forgot to tell you, for dinner last night I decided to keep it light and made Warm Ham and Swiss Wraps. They were SO SO good, just perfect with warm ham and gooey cheese together with lettuce, cucumber and green onions and a dressing made of mayonnaise, mustard and celery seed....the kids loved them and it was a pretty healthy meal too. It didn't take too long to make and everyone was satisfied.

I'll post the recipe for you on my food blog tomorrow, I'm hoping to have an hour or so to completely update it and throw in a couple of new recipes.

Remember I've been telling you I was coming by to visit?? Well I ended up not doing so, but I'm sure I don't have to tell you that, you must have noticed the lack of comments on my part. My computer has been going haywire and doing weird things, like shutting itself down in the middle of something, lagging like crazy, or crashing and restarting while trying to get into my bloglines.

I've spent the last hour and a half fixing my computer and everything seems to be in running order so I'll be grabbing a cup of hot tea and some cookies tonight, and coming to hang out with all of you. Can't wait to catch up and see what everyone has been up to.

Right now, my roast is done, so I'm off to set the table and get things ready for dinner. Wish I could have stayed longer but time doesn't permit and besides I would rather get things all done so I can get back here earlier. I'll probably update my book blog too, I have been reading Lori Wick and she is just amazing so I can't wait to tell you all about it.

See you soon,

Friday, February 16, 2007

Greatest Places on Earth!!!! GREEK ISLANDS

Good morning everyone, are you ready for our trip today????

Before we leave, I want to let you all know that I'm coming by to visit and check out all the great recipes you shared yesterday too, I honestly didn't have a minute to do it yesterday, but I do today so I'll be popping by. Hope you have some hot coffee for me :)

Alright, today we're going to the Greek Islands.....I can't wait!!!


There are 1400 islands in Greece: isolated island, cosmopolitan Greece island full of luxury hotels, island with history, etc... You can also make island hopping in Greece.The most famous are Mykonos, Naxos, Paros, Santorini, Skiathos, Skopelos, Corfu, Lefkada, Zakynthos, Aegina...

Most adventures in the Greek Islands begin at the busy port of Piraeus. One of the Mediterranean’s busiest ports since classical times, it was linked with Athens by defensive walls. Now the two have melded and most people go to Piraeus just to catch a ferry or hydrofoil.

Usually, after visiting the must-see places of Athens, people are ready for some water and sun and head to one of the 169 inhabited islands amongst the 1400 sprinkled in the sea. There are islands for everyone — those wanting to escape, those wanting to explore the remains of old civilizations and those just wanting to enjoy the sand, sea, tavernas and Greek food while revelling in some of the 300 sunny days a year.


Mykonos in the Cyclades group. It’s perhaps the best known and most expensive of the islands, with pretty villages and traditional Greek culture.

Once a peaceful fishing port, it became popular almost overnight after a visit by Aristotle and Jackie Onassis. Mykonos’ best known church, Panagia Paraportiani, is actually four little churches forming one beautiful, white, asymmetrical building. Its multifaceted structure is a magnet for photographers and a wonderful place for great views of the sunset.


Next stop Naxos, the largest and most fertile of the Cycladic islands lying almost at the centre of the Aegean. Legend has it that Ariadne was abandoned there by Theseus, but she was soon in the arms of Dionysos, the god of wine and ecstasy. Ever since, Naxian wine has been recommended as the cure for a broken heart. Meadows run down to vast beaches, cliffs sink into the sea and there are rocky mountains, fertile valleys and many springs and streams. The coastline is abrupt on the south side and sheltered to the west, with many inlets and sandy beaches.

Due to its abundance of fresh water, Naxos is self-sufficient and produces premium quality fruit and vegetables. Their olives, grapes, figs, citrus, corn and potatoes make their way to tables across the world.


Santorini is the southernmost island of the Cycladic group and is regarded by many as the most spectacular of all. It was the site of the world’s biggest volcanic eruption, leaving a crater, or caldera, with high cliffs which is one of the world’s most dramatic geological sights. Archaeologists believe it was responsible for wiping out the entire Minoan civilisation. It has also been an inspiration to painters, writers, poets and mystics. Sparkling white houses with blue window shutters line the crater.

Santorini has a 3500-year tradition of vineyard cultivation and around 850 growers tend vines which cover around one third of the island. At SantoWines you can taste wines with biscuits and cheese and olives while taking in a spectacular sunset.

The best way to get around the islands is by moped, or scooter. They are available for hire everywhere, but always check the brakes before you take off and be extra careful, as the roads aren’t very well maintained.



Rhodes and Santorini lie in the Cyclades Chain of Greek Islands, the town of Fira in Santorini is perched on top of the crater ( Caldera ). Best Viewed in small format, Music "Helithonaki" by Manos Takitos and His Bazoukis ... (more)

Have you ever imagined yourself lazing away in the Greek Islands on a sunny afternoon?

Shipwrech Beach on the Greek island of Zakynthos.
Stunning island that you can only get to by boat.
Beach is named for a stranded boat that crashed there in the early 80's and is still there today mostly buried by sand. One of the most photographed beaches in Europe if not the world.


Spinach and Feta Salad / Spanako me Feta Salata
makes 8 servings
2 pounds fresh spinach
1/2 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 cucumber, sliced
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 pound feta cheese, crumbled
2 green onions, chopped

Remove stems from spinach. Wash and drain leaves, cut into 1-inch wide strips, and place in a salad bowl. Shake together the oil, vinegar, lemon juice, cinnamon, mustard, salt, and pepper; pour half the dressing over the spinach and mix well. Thinly slice cucumbers and arrange in a ring across the top with the cherry tomatoes. Sprinkle with cheese and onions. Pour remaining dressing over the salad.


1 kilo OF pork or Lamb Meat

5 Cloves finely
chopped garlic

Olive oil

1 tbsp Oregano




green pepper

Cut the meat into 2 x 2 inch cubes. Mix with the rest of the ingredients and marinate, preferably overnight, in the refrigerator. Skewer with or without your favourite vegetables, like peppers, onions or tomatoes, and barbecue at medium heat. Baste with an olive oil, lemon juice and oregano brine

SERVE WITH fries and a salad


1 kilo (1 lb 2 oz) "phyllo" pastry

2 teacups almonds pounded into crumbs

1 ½ teacups butter

½ teacup sugar

1 tablespoon cinnamon

3 teacups sugar

1 teacup honey

2 teacups water

cinnamon stick

1 teaspoon clove sticks

In a bowl, mix the pounded almonds, the sugar and the cinnamon.
Butter a small pan and lay a few sheets of "fyllo" pastry onto it brushing each o
ne with butter.

Next, spread a small amount of the almond mix over the "fyllo" layer.
Continue by making successive layers of "fyllo" and almond mix of about equal thickness.

Finish with a thicker layer of "phyllo" sheets (6-8 sheets) brushing each sheet with butter.
With a sharp knife cut the "baklava" into diamond-shaped pieces.

Sprinkle with water and bake in amedium oven for about 1 1/2 hour. In the meantime, prepare the syrup as follows :
In a pot , place the water, the honey, the sugar and the spices and boil them over a strong fir for about 15 minutes.

When the "baklava" is ready, remove from the oven and let it cool.
Pour the boiling syrup over it. Cut out the pieces, that were marked before baking.

And that is it for today, hope you all enjoyed your trip to the Greek Islands, I know I did and now more than ever I am hoping that one day I can have the pleasure of visiting them myself :)

Next week we're heading to Jerusalem so I hope you're ready to travel along with me....

Thursday, February 15, 2007

I decided to update my banner, I figured with it being a new year, we needed a new one :) Please update your banners when participating ok???

Welcome to my weekly Crockpot Recipes Exchange. 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 :)

Slow Cooker Cordon Bleu


* 6 chicken breast halves, boneless, skinless - pounded to flatten slightly
* 6 thin slices ham
* 6 thin slices Swiss cheese
* 1/4 to 1/2 cup flour, for coating
* 1/2 pound sliced mushrooms
* 1/2 cup chicken broth
* 1/2 cup dry white wine (or use chicken broth)
* 1/2 teaspoon rosemary, crushed
* 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
* 2 teaspoons cornstarch mixed with 1 tablespoon cool water
* salt and pepper to taste


Place a slice of ham and slice of cheese on each flattened chicken breast and roll up. Secure with toothpicks and roll each in flour to coat. Place mushrooms in the slow cooker, then the chicken breasts.

Whisk together the broth, wine (if using), and rosemary; pour over chicken. Sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese. Cover and cook on low for 6 to 7 hours. Just before serving, remove the chicken; keep warm. To juices in slow cooker, add cornstarch mixture; stir until thickened. Salt and pepper, then taste and adjust seasonings. Pour sauce over chicken rolls and serve.
Serves 6.