Friday, March 31, 2023

{ Blog 365 #90 - Spring bookmarks }

As Spring rolls around, my reading list changes a bit.  I tend to drift towards books that I feel, represent Spring in some way, shape or form.

March 31, 2023

The Secret Garden is a favorite for this time of year, along with Little House on the Prairie, The Wind in the Willows and of course the ever beautiful Beatrix Potter.

March 31, 2023

But I don't just grab Spring like books, I also grab my Spring bookmarks.  I have a few that I made, using scrap yarn, or little leftover balls of yarn that aren't big enough for any other project.

Over the next few days, you will see some of these bookmarks pop up, both here on the blog, and on my Instagram.

March 31, 2023

It's just a way of bringing even more Spring, into my home.  And of course, that little touch of crochet just screams cosy.

Thursday, March 30, 2023

{ Blog 365 #89 - Cooking Thursday }

I know, the name is catchy isn't it??? But it's really just a pasta dish with ham and some peas, it's yummy :)

It's one of those fast meals you can make when you're in a hurry, but still tastes wonderful ;)


1 package (16 ounces) linguine
2 cups julienned fully cooked ham
1 tablespoon butter or margarine
3 cups frozen peas
1 1/2 cups shredded Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup whipping cream

Cook linguine according to package directions. Meanwhile in a large skillet, saute ham in butter for 3 minutes.

Add peas; heat through. Drain linguine; toss with ham mixture, Parmesan cheese and cream.

Serve immediately.

Makes 8 servings.

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

{ Blog 365 #88 - The joy of a clothesline }

I was talking about domestic bliss yesterday, and one of the chores that I absolutely love doing, is hanging clothes out to dry. 
The simple action of taking the wet laundry, fresh out of the washer, and hanging them up, one by one, watching them blow in the breeze, always brings a smile to my face.
When I was growing up, in South Africa, we had a circular clothesline, and I often would ask my stepmother if I could go hang the clothes out.  Then I would equally find joy in bringing them all in, once they were dry.   I guess, if I think about it, that may have been the beginning of my love for family, and homemaking.

Where other girls my age, were more interested in dolls, or make up, or doing other things, my focus was always on playing pretend family. 

March 29, 2023

I would pretend I had a home, and would turn my room into my tiny little house.  Each corner was a room, kitchen, living area and bathroom.  My dolls were my children, and I carefully took care of them, giving them baths, feeding them, and putting them to bed.

I felt this immense pride in doing those things, and couldn't wait to grow up, get married, have children and repeat those chores, but for real this time.
I do believe that God gives us all a task, to live out while here on earth, and mine has always been to be the caregiver, the caretaker of the family and home.  

March 29, 2023

Some may look at this and think it would be far quicker and easier, to just throw the laundry in the dryer, and I guess some days that is true.  But one of the reasons I look forward to Spring and Summer, is to be able to make full use of my clothesline.

We've had a few different clotheslines, different ways, different designs, but they didn't seem to work out how I wanted, and this current one, just works best.  So for the near future, that is where it will be.

March 29, 2023

But I thought it would be fun to go back in my blog, and find my posts with clothesline pictures.  There were quite a few, surprisingly, even to me.

So, I'll you with some clothesline shots....








Tuesday, March 28, 2023

{ Blog 365 #87 - Domestic Bliss }

To some it may sound a bit weird. Domestic bliss.....what is that? 
Well friends, it is exactly what I feel being home and being a homemaker.  That feeling of pure joy, knowing that within these four walls, there is peace, there is love, and there is security from the outside world.

It is a cloudy and bit gloomy day.  We are not expecting rain again until Thursday, but we did have a bit of sprinkling this morning.  This means, that until I have to leave this afternoon to run an errand, I am inside, in this cozy warm home, just going about my day.

The pottering of a housewife, we all know what that means.  So here are my domestic pleasures for today:

♥ Remove and fold the laundry in the dryer.  Switch over the bed sheets from the washer to dry 

♥ Work on my meal plan and grocery list

♥ Carpet clean the hallway

♥ Start dinner in the crockpot

Squeeze in some time for some reading, crocheting, catching up on my shows

♥ Plan Easter dinner

♥ Write up the budget for April

Monday, March 27, 2023

{ Blog 365 #86 - Happy Homemaker Monday - 03/27/2023 }

Good morning sweet ladies, how was your weekend?   
I sure hope you had a good one.  I want to start by wishing you all, a very happy Monday and a blessed week ahead.
I have been up since 3:30 am.  Didn't get to bed until 10 pm, and then couldn't fall asleep, so to say I'm tired is an understatement.  I'm exhausted and sore from all the yard work yesterday.
But, the reason Curt and I are up so early is for a good reason, although under sad circumstances.  Miss Diane, who I asked you to pray for after the car accident, passed away on Sunday morning.  Her husband asked my husband (they've been friends for years), to please drive with him to Dallas, to take the family to the airport as they are returning home.
Of course my husband said yes.  That is why we had to be up so early, because they needed to leave very early too.  I am so sad for this family, I had hoped she would pull through, but I think given her age, she was 68, and the extent of the injuries, her body just couldn't take it.  We know as Christians that she is home with the father now, free of all physical pain, but it was such a senseless, sudden death, that it leaves everyone shocked and trying to deal with what happened.
Please continue to hold her husband, children and family, in your prayers.
Have a blessed week friends ♥

The Weather:::
Freezing mornings, and then hot afternoons.  We've been getting mornings in the 20s and then high 80s afternoons.  The weather has gone insane.  
Monday - Partly cloudy, 64
Tuesday - Mostly sunny, 60
Wednesday - Mostly sunny, 69
Thursday - Cloudy, 72
Friday - Partly cloudy, 80
Saturday - Mostly sunny, 72
Sunday - Partly cloudy, 84

As I look outside my window:::

Sun is shining and is reflecting off the dew on the grass.  I love dewy mornings.

Right now I am:::
I just sat back down on my bed, to work on this post.  I will make the bed after and get ready for the day.           

Thinking and pondering:::
About Diane's family.  It hasn't left my mind.  Life is so short, and we are not guaranteed tomorrow.  When things like this happen, so close to home and someone we knew, it makes it all the more real.  Makes you stop and think about what really matters in life, and the time we spend with our loves ones.      

On my bedside table:::
Water bottle, phone and tv remote, plus my Alexa.       

On my tv this week:::
Portuguese Soaps - Quero e Viver, Para Sempre and Flor Sem Tempo
Homemaking Vlogs on Youtube
Podcasts on Rumble
Star Trek Picard 

Listening to:::
Watching a video on Youtube, it is a slow living, quiet, unspoken video, which I've been really enjoying lately.      

On the lunch plate:::
Leftovers.  I was so busy in the garden yesterday, that I ended up not making my pork roast, for dinner.  Will do that today.  But after I came in from the garden, I showered then made a quick dinner of Basmati rice and some smoked beef brats in a tomato sauce.  That's what I'll have for lunch.  

On the dinner plate:::
Pork Roast and Potatoes, with steamed broccoli and cauliflower. 

On the menu for this week:::
I need to start working on the new meal plan, again.  Feels like these weeks are flying.
Monday - Pork Roast and Potatoes, steamed broccoli and cauliflower
Tuesday - Homemade Quesaritos, Chips and Salsa (using leftover pork roast)
Wednesday - Cheesy Onion Mushroom Chicken, Rice with carrots, Sweet and spicy cabbage
Thursday - Fish Sticks, Potato Salad, Homemade Tartar Sauce
Friday -
Saturday -
Sunday -
On my reading pile:::
Longbourn by Jo Baker.
A prairie Girl's Faith by Stephen W. Hines
A Feather on the Water

On my to do list:::
Kitchen - Put away clean dishes, sweep and mop.     
Laundry - one load of laundry to do

Plans for this week:::
Meal plan and grocery list
Refill my prescriptions

What I am creating:::
Blooming Flower Cushion
Psalms Embroidery 
Chickens and Geese for decoration

My simple pleasure:::
Working in the yard.  It is tiring, and difficult at times, and during the summer it is almost impossible to be out there for long, but I love getting everything clean and tidy, planting and setting up areas for entertaining.  
Looking around the house:::
Elliott and Kaia are both asleep on my bed.  The baby chicks are asleep in their coop.  We set the coop up by the office window (yes we have room to do that), and every morning I open the curtains, so they love the morning sun.  

From the camera:::
I just love fruit tree blossoms.  I find them so exquisite to look at, and they always have the most gorgeous colors and aromas.   

March 26, 2023

Bible verse, Devotional, Quote:::
Get up and face life with courage because, as God's child, you have not been left tot he limits of your own strength and wisdom. - New Morning Mercies by Paul David Tripp
How incredibly poignant is this quote today?  Especially as I was talking above, about Miss Diane's passing and how it left me feeling a bit out of order, and pondering on how quick we can all go.  We have a choice, whether to let that uncertainty of our time, take us over and freeze us from enjoying life......or to move forward each day and just live life to the fullest.
On my prayer list:::
My mom Jacinta
The Luckett family  

Sunday, March 26, 2023

{ Blog 365 #85 - Spring cleaning the back yard }

March 26, 2023

I saw a meme the other day that said something along the lines of, when you're in your twenties you stay up all night, drink, have a hungover, and then take a shower, get dressed and head straight to work, like nothing happened.

Then in your 40's, you buy the wrong pillow and are sent to hospice care.  Hahahaha

It made me laugh so hard, because we all know that feeling.  Muscles we didn't know existed, sleeping wrong knocks you out for a few days, and so forth.  

I'm bringing that up, because yesterday, I decided to mow the back yard, and clean out the back porch, remove all the weeds by hand, move patio furniture, rake and all the other stuff that needed doing.

I felt fine doing it.  Worked from 9 am until 4:30 pm.

However, by the time I got into bed last night, and this morning......I am broken y'all.  LOL

My word, I am so sore all over.  My hands, lower back, legs and even buttocks.  Why?  Why?

March 26, 2023

But it had to be done.

Just look at that yard?  Looks like I haven't mowed since last summer, and yet it was just two weeks ago.  We've had a lot of rain already this year, so everything is growing super fast, which makes me very happy, but it does mean a lot of mowing every two weeks.

March 26, 2023

Starting to look better.  Does anyone else love seeing the yard being mowed?

It's rewarding seeing the mower carve a line through the tall grass.  The yard looks so much better, I just ended up not taking any other photos, because I had garden gloves on and was juggling a rake, a metal weed puller and so on.  I didn't want to grab my camera with dirty gloves or risk dropping it.

But, I will take some photos and show you.

March 26, 2023

March 26, 2023

I did take just two photos of my peach tree, before I started all the work.  How stunning are the peach tree blossoms?

Our fruit trees are going on 3 years old, so hopefully soon we start seeing fruit.

And that my friends, was my Sunday.  Busy, tiring, but very rewarding.

Saturday, March 25, 2023

{ Blog 365 #84 - Our chicks are getting so big }

March 25, 2023

I was watching our babies the other day, and I said to Curt that it is fascinating, just how quickly baby chicks grow.

It seems that every day, they have taken a huge leap.

For as long as I can remember, I have wanted chickens.  But now that I'm actually in this dream, I am learning more and more about the love you quickly develop, for these sweet feathered babies.

There is so much to learn, so much to see.  
March 25, 2023

Curt and I often sit near their coop just watching them, with a huge smile on our faces.

For the past 3 weeks they have been in a brooder, but this afternoon we moved them to their little coop.  They are still inside the house, actually set up in the office, but they need the room to grow.

And this way, they also learn to enjoy their new home.
March 25, 2023

The happiness of these 3 babies, in their new home, is like nothing else.  They are flying about the run, sunning themselves under the warm light, running up and down the ramp and just being adorable.
I love them all, but I do have a special spot for this fluffy baby.  I have no clue what kind of chicken it is, and if you do, please let me know.  It has feathered feet and legs and the wing tips flip up.

It's just the cutest little thing ever. 

March 25, 2023

Tomorrow, we have a lot of yard work to do. 
We have gotten so much rain lately, that we mowed the property two weeks ago, and when I show you what my land looks like at the moment, you will be shocked. 
It is as if we haven't mowed in months. Crazy!!! 
Anyway, I hope you've enjoyed another little peek at our sweet babies. We still don't know if they are female or male, guess we will have to wait and see.

Friday, March 24, 2023

{ Blog 365 #83 - Casting Crowns Concert }

I was so blessed today.  Me, my husband, brother, sister in law and niece, went to watch Casting Crowns in concert.  We also got to see We are Messengers and Ben Fuller!!!  

Truly a blessing to be a part of such a wonderful worship night.

I posted a few videos on Instagram, so if you follow me over there, you will have seen them.

Hubby also got me 3 of the Casting Crowns CDs and a "I'm one of those crazy people" T-shirts.  ♥
If you haven't heard the song Crazy People, yet, go on over to Youtube and listen.  The lead singer Mark Hall, wrote this song to encourage all of us Christians to be more bold in sharing the gospel.  We are looked down upon, made fun of, told we are fanatic for talking too much about Jesus Christ, and often we tend to pull back so as not to draw attention, but that is NOT what we need to be doing.  We need to be one of those crazy people who, as in the lyrics of the song....... 

Who brings a Bible into a public school?Who shares a gospel even when the world caused them a fool?And who's not afraid to go against the floor?Will cancel me and call me one of those'Cause I'm one of those
Crazy people trust in JesusFollowing Him wherever He leads usKingdom seekers, walk by faith believersHere's the church, here's the steeple, here's to all God's crazy people

During the concert, my husband also felt moved to sponsor a child through the Compassion International.  We are now the proud sponsors of a sweet baby girl, who is turning 2 years old in May.  Her name is Biti and she is from Bangladesh.

When the welcome package arrives, and as we learn more about sweet Biti, I will be sharing it here with you.
And if you feel lead yourself, to sponsor one of these sweet babies, be sure to check the website linked above.

Thursday, March 23, 2023

{ Blog 365 #82 - Cooking Thursday }

The best ever fluffy buttermilk pancakes

The Best Ever Fluffy Buttermilk Pancakes
Source:  The Slow Roasted Italian
Serves 6

2 cups all purpose flour
¼ cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 beaten eggs
2 cups buttermilk
¼ cup unsalted butter, melted
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

In a large bowl combine flour, sugar, baking powder and baking soda. Whisk to combine. Add eggs, buttermilk, butter, salt and vanilla. Stir until just combined. Do not over stir or you will have flat pancakes.

Set aside on the counter for an hour, or place in the refrigerator overnight.

Ladle ¼ cup batter on a hot non stick skillet, over medium heat. Cook until pancakes are golden brown around the edge and bubble appear around the edges. Flip and cook until done.

Serve and enjoy!

The best ever fluffy buttermilk pancakes

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

{ Blog 365 #80 - Blooming Flower Pillow }

Back in 2011, I made a Blooming Flower pillow.  I followed the pattern through Lucy from Attic 24 and loved the way it turned out.

Of course over the years, it's been sat on and hugged, and laid upon by both humans and pets, and so it's become a bit of raggedy, flat pillow.  But I so enjoyed making it, that I wanted to start another.

I completely forgot about it, and then a few days ago all of a sudden, it popped into my mind again.

I gathered some yarn from my bits and bobs, and started another.




Monday, March 20, 2023

{ Blog 365 #79 - Happy Homemaker Monday - 03/20/2023 }

Good morning everyone, and a very happy Monday to you all.   
This post is going up a bit later than usual, I had to run some errands this morning, and am only now getting to sit down and work on our Happy Homemaker Monday. 
So with that said, let's just get right on with it.
Have a blessed week friends ♥

The Weather:::
Cold, freezing temps in the morning.  We went from 86 degrees to 26.  Absolutely ridiculous. 
Monday - Wind and cloudy, 61
Tuesday - AM clouds, 79
Wednesday - Mostly cloudy, 83
Thursday - Scattered Thunderstorms, 75
Friday - Mostly sunny, 70
Saturday - Sunny, 72
Sunday - Sunny, 73

As I look outside my window:::

Sun is shining.  There are birds eating the deer corn, and flying back and forth from the ground to the trees.      

Right now I am:::
Typing up this post and listening to a podcast.         

Thinking and pondering:::
About my ongoing car problems.  We had to order a new part online, and when it arrives tomorrow, we will install it.  Hopefully it fixes the coolant leak issue, once and for all.    

On my bedside table:::
At the moment, my coffee cup, water bottle and tv remote.     

On my tv this week:::
Portuguese Soaps - Quero e Viver, Para Sempre and Flor Sem Tempo
Homemaking Vlogs on Youtube
Podcasts on Rumble
Star Trek Picard 

Listening to:::
Podcast on the tv.   Baby chickens in the office, happily chirping away.       

On the lunch plate:::
Not sure yet.  Probably leftovers.  

On the dinner plate:::
Ham, Bacon and Cheese stuffed Meatloaf, Mashed Potatoes, Salad 

On the menu for this week:::
Monday - Ham, Bacon and Cheese Stuffed Meatloaf, Mashed Potatoes, Salad
Tuesday - BBQ Chicken Thighs, Potato Salad
Wednesday - Slow Cooker Shepherd's Pie, Mixed Veggies
Thursday - Slow Cooker Ravioli, Garlic Bread Knots
Friday - Pork Roast, Rice with carrots, Salad
Saturday - Homemade Quesaritos
Sunday - Corned Beef Hash, Steamed Broccoli
On my reading pile:::
Longbourn by Jo Baker.
A prairie Girl's Faith by Stephen W. Hines
A Feather on the Water

On my to do list:::
Kitchen - Put away clean dishes, take out meat for dinner, sweep and mop   
Dining room and living room - tidy up, vacuum and dust
Continue cleaning out back porch

Plans for this week:::
Blogging, updating food blog
Fix car

What I am creating:::
Garden plans
Blooming Flower Cushion
Psalms Embroidery 

My simple pleasure:::
Crocheting.  I don't crochet as I used to, I actually miss it so much and hope to get back to crocheting every day. 
Looking around the house:::
Elliott and Kaia are both asleep on my bed.  The baby chicks are asleep in their brooder.  
I have a comforter draped over my couches, I always drape them over chairs or couches, once I've taken them out of the dryer, because often times they are not completely dry.  This one is dry now, so I need to fold it and pack it away.      

From the camera:::
These sweet babies have gotten sooooo big.  I can't wait to show you how they're doing now.  

Bible verse, Devotional, Quote:::

“Those who find me find life and receive favor from the Lord.” --  Proverbs 8:35

On my prayer list:::
My mom Jacinta - for her brain atrophy and early onset of dementia.
Diane Luckett - she is stable after being hit by a drunk driver.  She does however have a long road ahead, broken pelvis, leg, arm and wrist.  Head trauma and neck trauma.  
Terri Luckett and their children - her husband and children

Sunday, March 19, 2023

{ Blog 365 #78 - Missing my girls }



I was looking through my old blog posts and got such a homesick feeling, for when we were stationed back in Arizona. Especially for our pug girls, who we loved so very much. 
We lost our baby Lola in 2016 and 2 years later, we lost our sweet Bella.
Our fur babies all hold a special place in our hearts, and truly, the thought that one day I will be in Heaven with allllll of them around, brings so much joy.
Until then, I just have their photos to look back on, and a hole in my heart that will always be there.

Saturday, March 18, 2023

Friday, March 17, 2023

{ Blog 365 #76 - Please pray }

 Life is so short, and things change in the blink of an eye.

Yesterday, my husbands good friend and co-worker, got a phone call that his wife Miss Diane, had been in a car accident.

It was a huge accident that actually made the news here.

Here is the article, if you want to take a look.

Miss Diane was stopped at the intersection, in her car, when a drunk driver came flying down the highway, and slammed into her at high speed.  She had to be resuscitated and life flighted to an out of town hospital.

She is stable at the moment, but suffered quite extensive injuries.  Please please pray for Miss Diane, she is such a sweet lady.  Also pray for her husband Terry.  I can't even imagine how he is feeling.  He was with my husband when he got the call.  Heartbreaking!

Thursday, March 16, 2023

{ Blog 365 #75 - Cooking Thursday }

 Victoria Sponge, such a simple treat but amazingly tasty.  I'm not a huge fan of cake, and especially cake with tons of very sweet frosting.  BLECH!

But what exactly is the Victoria Sponge, where did it come from, who first baked it?  Here's a little history for you:

Anna, the Duchess of Bedford (1788-1861), one of Queen Victoria's (1819-1901) ladies-in-waiting, is credited as the creator of teatime. Because the noon meal had become skimpier, the Duchess suffered from "a sinking feeling" at about four o'clock in the afternoon. At first the Duchess had her servants sneak her a pot of tea and a few breadstuffs into her dressing room.

Adopting the European tea service format, she invited friends to join her for an additional afternoon meal at five o'clock in her rooms at Belvoir Castle. The menu centered around small cakes, bread and butter sandwiches, assorted sweets, and, of course, tea. This summer practice proved so popular, the Duchess continued it when she returned to London, sending cards to her friends asking them to join her for "tea and a walking the fields. The practice of inviting friends to come for tea in the afternoon was quickly picked up by other social hostesses.

Queen Victoria adopted the new craze for tea parties. By 1855, the Queen and her ladies were in formal dress for the afternoon teas. This simple cake was one of the queen's favorites. After her husband, Prince Albert, died in 1861, the Queen Victoria spend time in retreat at the Queen's residence (Osborn House) at the Isle of Wight. According to historians, it was here that the cakes were named after her.

I do love a good sponge cake, there's nothing better than a thick slice with a hot cup of coffee.

I had been craving a Victoria Sponge for a few weeks but just never seemed to have the time, and truth be told, I haven't always had the best of luck with sponge cakes, some have been super flops, much to my dismay.

However, this recipe is one that I have had nothing but success with, and it's now my go to Victoria Sponge.

As for the filling, I like to use homemade whipped cream, but in a pinch whipped topping from the store will work too.

Give this one a go and let me know how you liked it.

Victoria Sponge
Victoria Sponge
Adapted from:  Keep Calm and Bake

1 1/4 cups self rising flour, sifted (if you don't have, just use plain flour and add 2 teaspoons of baking powder)
3/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup soft margarine
3 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp strawberry jam (you can use blackberry or raspberry too)
Whipped Cream (you can use whipped topping)
Powdered sugar for dusting

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  Grease and line two 8 inch round sandwich pans.  Put all the ingredients except the jam and powdered sugar into the bowl of a standing mixer.  Beat the living daylights out of them.  You can also use an electric hand whisk.

When the batter is very pale, fluffy and almost mousse-like, divide it between the prepared pans and smooth out.  Bake for about 20 minutes or until they are springy to the touch and a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

Cool the cakes on a wire rack.  When they are cold, sandwich them with jam and the whipped cream and dust the top with powdered sugar.

Wednesday, March 15, 2023

{ Blog 365 #74 - Having car problems }

New car
I love my little Sonic, it's been with me since 2015 and in very good condition.  But over the years, there have been issues here and there.  
Now I'm having a coolant leak issue, due to a bad o ring seal.  I know that sounds like crazy talk if you don't understand anything about cars, but I grew up with 3 brothers, and a mechanic grandfather who was always tinkering on cars.
I've always loved mechanics and found it quite interesting.
Anyway, driving this morning, I get on the highway and all of a sudden my car starts beeping.  I look down and the engine overheat light is on.  I had to quickly get off the highway, to a gas station nearby (thank the Lord).

The seal had completely collapsed, my coolant tank was empty and it had spit the coolant all over my engine bay.  My word!

I managed to refill the tank, sit for a bit, then drive home slowly.  We managed to fix the seal and now we're back in business.

What a day though!!!