Tuesday, December 21, 2010

You've got a little bit of something on your nose...

My little sous-chef and I made some cookies today. I think she enjoyed being the taste-tester more than anything.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Mmmm Mmmm Monday: Revisited

Yesterday I decided that I really needed to work on getting myself into the holiday spirit this year. There's so much going on in our lives right now that is stressing me out...I haven't baked a single thing since pumpkin bread last month.

My parents were here over the weekend and my mommy bought me all the fixin's for Church windows. They were a staple in my house as a kid every Christmas, and I am trying to keep the tradition alive in my own home.

Want a refresher on how to make these babies? Just go here for the full instructions.

Monday, December 6, 2010

More Jonah-isms!

While checking over Jonah's homework tonight I found something that made me laugh.

He has to write a sentance for every spelling word. Two of the words were "sometimes" and "take". Here's what he wrote for these two.

"Sometimes I don't want to go to school."
"Please don't take me to school."

I'm sure his teacher will be so happy that he's knocking his education in his homework assignments.

He is so his father!

My Stuff's in a STORE!!

I was recently contacted by a super sweet woman named Carol. She was opening a gift shop in a suburb of Charleston and after peeking around on Etsy had stumbled on my shop. She called me up and asked to carry some of my items in store. IN. HER. STORE! I was so excited. I have a couple other people carrying my items but none of them are local. This one I could actually walk into and see my stuff there on the shelf. I was so pumped!
Last week I met her daughter and sold some of my items to them for their grand opening on Saturday.
Then today, we were in Mt. Pleasant for Jonah's doc visit-he's cast free (for now anyway)-and the hubby said that since we were over on this end of town we should stop by Pure Gifts and see my stuff live & in person.
We walked in and Jonah was the first one to spot something of mine...painted ornaments hanging on the Christmas tree. I think he was just as excited as I was!

Here's me in front of my bowholders on the wall, cheesing it up with my burpie sets!

And after talking to Ms. Carol today after my visit to the shop, I am going back on Saturday with more goodies for her to carry.

If only we didn't have to move to Oklahoma in a couple weeks...

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

To sum it all up...

Holy Moses it's been a crazy week. I have been insanely busy and it's not going to let up anytime soon I'm sure.

Here's a recap of how my life has been recently:
* While my Etsy sales are down compared to this time last month, I still am working on something Etsy related every day. The Post Office staff know me by name.
* The kids had a 5 day weekend and the hubby came home from training over the holiday for a 4 day weekend. We also had a couple of guys from his training class come up for Thanksgiving since they weren't going to be going home to their families.
* I spent Wednesday night and all day Thursday cooking.
* Thursday was spent watching football (darn Lions lost again!) and eating.
* Friday was spent recovering from Thursday. We did some shopping but nothing exciting for Black Friday. 'Cuz this momma is D-O-N-E done shopping for her babies!
* Saturday we did more errand running and then went to our dear friends' home for some super tasty food and more football. I love me a Southern oyster roast and college football rivalries!
* Sunday we once again recovered from the food consumed on Saturday.

So far this week I have busted my hump working on Etsy orders that I didn't even look at over the weekend. And today I need to run a couple errands (Post Office, I will see you soon!), finish a blanket, and clean my house. Because tomorrow morning before the buttcrack of early, I will pile my sister and kids in the car and drive 2.5 hours to see my man graduate FLETC. Then his parents & niece will be making the trip up to our house to spend some time with us before we move. The remainder of my week will be spent sewing and entertaining, and hopefully getting some answers on when we can start scheduling movers to come. We hit the long road to Oklahoma City in just three weeks!

So I will do my darndest to keep up with this here blog, but I apologize in advance if I cannot! My life is just a big 'ol barrel of busyness right now.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Mmmm Mmmm Monday: Chicken Bog

Okay, okay, I know the name doesn't sound very appetizing. But believe you me...it is delicious! Even my boys ate every bite. And they're PICKY, those boys. It's another recipe that I got from the back of a novel written by a Southern author. I love when I stumble on great new food ideas that way!

Here's what you need:
6 cups water
1 Tbsp salt
1 3-4lb whole chicken
2 carrots quartered (I sliced mine)
2 ribs celery, sliced
1 cup long grain rice, uncooked
1/2 lb smoked sausage, sliced & uncooked
2 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp poultry seasoning (I used Old Bay)
1 Tbsp dried parsely flakes (I didn't have any so I substituted Italian seasoning.)

Step 1: Place water, onion, salt, chicken, carrots & celery in a large pot. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat & cover; cook for 1 hour.
Step 2: Remove chicken & let cool, saving the liquid & veggies.
Step 3: Remove skin & bones from chicken and chop meat into bite-sized pieces. Skim fat from liquid and measure 3.5 cups of liquid into a large saucepan. Add chicken pieces, cooked veggies, sliced sausage, rice, butter & seasonings. Bring to a boil, cover & reduce heat. Cook for 30 minutes.

This is definitely a comfort food dish and is perfect for those chilly fall & winter evenings. It's going to be a staple in our house for sure.

While I was enjoying my bog, I thought to myself that it would taste great with leftover turkey from Thanksgiving instead of the chicken. Just change step 1 to only heat up some veggies (maybe stir fry or steam them) and then go straight to step 2 and add your leftover turkey pieces instead of the chicken. I think I may try it if we have any extra bird this weekend!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Friday Finds on Etsy: Gwen Marie Designs

I absolutely LOVE sending and recieving Christmas cards. I start looking around for different designs in October and have a heck of a time narrowing it down to one. Last year I found a great card on Etsy and decided to look there again this year. After much searching and "hearting" of many different designs, I stumbled onto this shop and instantly fell in love.

She has so much to offer in her shop: holiday cards, wedding invitations & save the dates, birthday cards, and lots more. Here's a few of my favorites from Gwen's shop...

Tell me those are great?! There are so many awesome holiday cards to choose from...I had a hard time picking just one! But I finally did and I cannot wait to order our cards this year and get them in mailed out! Thanks so much Gwen!

I got featured!

A very lovely lady over at Love of the Sea requested 3 of my Starfish Santa ornaments recently. I have her order all packaged up and ready to mail today, but she's so excited that she wrote on her blog about them before she even recieved them! How's that for a compliment? I love it!

She also has her own ocean-inspired Etsy shop, so make sure you check her out too!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Time flies...

I cannot believe that next week is Thanksgiving. And then just a few days after that, the hubby will be graduating from FLETC training in Georgia. The four-and-a-half months has gone so quickly! If you would've asked me back in July if I thought the time would go so fast I would've laughed in your face.

Actually, I think I did laugh at a few of you who tried to tell me that.

But I am here to admit that yes, it HAS sped by. And it just keeps getting faster and faster.

I'm thrilled to bits that we're at the end of this chapter, but I'm also dreading it. Because the hubby's graduation means that less than 45 days later we will be living in a new state, having to find a new house, send the boys to yet another new school, and we'll all have to make new friends.

I like my friends that are here in South Carolina, thanks.

I'm not saying that people in Oklahoma are bad...not at all. We actually have a few friends in the area already, so that will definitely help. But I want my South Carolina friends. And my South Carolina house. And my South Carolina beaches. And South Carolina. I'm just not ready to leave.

I know that you're all thinking "Well, you're a military wife...you should know that this was coming." Yes, I did know. But I feel at home here and just because I knew we'd be moving away at some point doesn't mean I'm ready for it. We're having a bit of trouble finding a house we like/is in a safe neighborhood/we can afford out in OKC so that doesn't help my "moving mood".

And we are moving over Christmas, so that doesn't make it any easier. I love decorating my house for the holidays. My hubby loves hanging Christmas lights. My kids love putting ornaments on the tree. All of this will be nixed this year. I will, however decorate my fireplace mantle because I'm finally in a house that has one, and gosh dangit I'm hanging stockings from it. Even if it is only going to be for a couple of weeks. They're getting hung.

This has been an emotional few weeks for me, and is only going to get harder the closer it gets to us leaving. I fight back tears on a daily basis when I think of having to leave all my wonderful friends here. Some of them I consider family. Shoot...I've spent more holidays with them than I have with my own extended family the last couple of years. I wish I could pack them up and take them with me.

Even my 3 year old begs me weekly to "please please please pack my best friend Gracie in our car??"

My heart hurts.

We are doing our best to make the holiday special for the kids...we plan on bringing our Christmas gifts along in the car with us and wherever we are on Christmas we will open gifts and make the day happy for them. We have a small Christmas tree that the hubby brings with him when he's deployed over the holidays, so we will set that up in our hotel room for Christmas morning. We're taking our time driving out and have a few stops already planned out. We're going to spend a day/night in Memphis and see the city all decorated. We told the kids that since we can't put up our big tree this year, we'll go see as many huge Christmas trees as we can in all the places we stop on the way.

We just have to deal and adapt. It's things like this that I never thought of when I married a military man. But here they are.

So remember military families this year when you're celebrating with your loved ones. Because even if they're not serving overseas, they're are so many who still have to be apart from the ones they love.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

We have a winner!

I went to Random.org and put in the details and here's what it spit out:

And the owner of comment number five is.....

Congrats ma'am and I will be getting with you right away!!

Friday, November 5, 2010

Friday Finds on Etsy: Let's Talk Turkey...and a giveaway!

I really have been trying to get giveaways going lately and I just have had ZERO luck. So I decided that I will do a giveaway from my own Etsy shop.

It's November y'all! Can you believe it? I can't! This year has gone by so fast...and the last couple of months have literally flown. I am both looking forward to and dreading Thanksgiving this year...I love it because it's time for family and friends to gather and have great food, but I'm dreading it because it will be our last holiday here in my beloved South Carolina. But that is another post entirely...one that I don't have the stomach to right just yet because the mere thought brings me to tears.
Anyway, Thanksgiving tends to get lost in the hubbub of getting ready for Christmas (I myself am guilty of already playing Christmas music in the house & the car!), and I just wanted to spotlight it to make sure it gets its due.

My favorite Thanksgiving items from my shop are these:I found that adorable turkey fabric and bought it that minute...I love the chubby turkeys and it just makes me smile!Sophia wore the Turkey bow last year to our friends house for Thanksgiving and it was a big hit!
Okay...now for the giveaway. One lucky reader will recieve this super cute turkey clippie! Just go to my shop and nose around, then come back here and leave me a comment with your favorite item from Jen's Craft Corner. A winner will be chosen at random on Tuesday, 9 November. Be sure to leave me a way to contact you if you're the winner!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Happy Halloween, Shearer style.

We started our morning with orange colored pancakes that we decorated as "jack-o-lanterns" with chocolate chips. This one is the hubby's; apparently this is what you come up with when you're studying crime scene investigation at law enforement training. Gross, if you ask me. Then we went and bought some more pumpkins to carve. The ones from Noah's birthday party were a little yuck.After a super yummy dinner, we got the kids dressed and headed out for some Trick or Treating. Here's my pirate and my crippled shark.And the "Queen Bee" herself. Apparently she felt that her stroller was her chariot and I was her horse and footman. She was quite demanding about where I should stop the stroller and how long to wait for her to get back in.Trick or Treat! With daddy, who was dressed as a blind hockey ref. He got lots of laughs with that one!

The kids had a blast and were so happy that their daddy got to stay later this Sunday than normal. They got TONS of candy, too. Noah counted his and had 167 pieces. Jonah counted his up to 208. I told people earlier in the week that I guaranteed the sling would get Jonah "sympathy candy"...sure enough he did. I should've bet money!

Fun at the Fair

Over the weekend we went to the Coastal Carolina Fair. We spent a few hours there and it would've been longer if we had more money!We played a ton of games. (sorry..there are no games of pictures because both the hubby & I had to help...I helped Sophia and he helped Mr. One-arm.)
The kids really enjoyed the 4H Animal tent. The cows, chickens, horses, and pigs were a hit with my munchkins!I would NOT want to be a momma pig. I thought nursing one baby at a time was bad enough...this poor lady has 6 piglets going at it at once! And lemme tell you-they were NOT gentle!

Our family also was taped & interviewed for CBS Channel 5 news in Charleston! They did a piece on the cost of the fair for a family. Me & my goofy self was shown answering questions on the 11pm news on Saturday, 30 Oct. I'm famous! (Haha!)

The kids really enjoyed themselves, despite not going on any rides. Jonah wasn't able to ride anything with his arm in a sling, so we just decided to nix rides for everyone to keep it fair. The each ended up winning at least one game- Sophia won the first game and told everyone that it was the highlight of her day.

I hope that Oklahoma City has some good fairs...the kids really got their feet wet with this one and can't wait to go to more!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Five weeks is an eternity to a 6 year old.

Here's the little man sportin' his super cool Camo cast. The nurse technician and the doc both commented on the fact that it was a pretty bad break. The doc is concerned that he's had so many fractures/breaks for his age and said that when he measured the bones on the xray, Jonah's bones weren't measuring where they should be for his age. Not sure the next course of action, but we'll wait and see what they say in 5 weeks when we have the cast removed.

For now, he's been cleared to play sports with his brother and his friends, and is free to play at recess and PE. But I'm still holding off on allowing skating/skateboarding/bike riding. Call me overprotective, but I prefer not to tempt fate.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Friday Finds on Etsy: Grown Up Halloween Fun

Well, after the week I've had, the thought of relaxing this weekend and indulging in a 'grown up drink' or two, I decided to take my Friday Finds in a different direction this week. No cutesy, adorable stuff this week....no ma'am.
I despise spiders. But I LOVE this decantur and glass set. It's from Mary Elizabeth Arts . They are beautifully done...and would make such a great addition to your Halloween party decor!
Well, okay, this one from Impulsive Creativity is cute. What can I say? I'm a sucker for some candy corn.Now this is such a fun piece to decorate with! I could picture myself putting it on a shelf or tabletop with skull candleholder and maybe some mini papier-mache bones next to it...a perfect Halloween vignette! GreenCycle Designs has a ton of great painted bottles...you need to see for yourself!

Hope you all have a fun and safe Halloween. My hubby will be able to stay home a little longer this weekend so he'll be able to join us for Trick-or-Treating afterall. The kids & I are so thrilled. I just wish I could've found these beauties in time to use them this weekend!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

No More Monkeys Jumping on the Bed. Part 2.

We were FINALLY going to be home free with Jonah having broken fingers. Yesterday was his last set of x-rays and we were scheduled to see the doc today for the results.
But apparently, 2 broken fingers since June wasn't enough. And the memory of his sister splitting her head open and having 4 staples b/c she fell jumping on the bed wasn't enough to make him refrain from the very same act. The boy fell off the bed and broke his arm yesterday evening.
I was downstairs when I heard a thump. Honestly, when you have the children I do, you hear thumps all the time. The boys are BOYS and play knee hockey in their room almost daily. So the thump wasn't anything out of the ordinary and I continued on with whatever I was doing. Until I heard the wailing, and then the shouts from my sister that Jonah broke his arm.

My whole body sagged. Didn't we just get back from x-rays where the technician cautiously informed me that this was his fourth trip to the Base Radiology department since July? Didn't we just get something out of a splint??

I headed to the stairs and they were already down...and I saw it. Jonah's arm had a dip in it between the wrist and elbow. We raced nextdoor to our EMT neighbor's house (thank Heaven she wasn't on shift last night!) and she informed me that it was indeed a Silver Fork Break and that I needed to take him to Urgent Care. (She referred to is as a silver fork b/c his arm looked like what a fork looks like when lying upside down. Aren't you glad I gave you that mental picture??)

She helped me get him into the car while I called the after-hours nurse on the base to let them know I was headed to the urgent care facility and that they needed to call in a referral. I also called the hubby (who is, of course, still in Georgia) and filled him in. We got seen, had x-rays, and were informed that he broke both the ulna and the radius and the he was being splinted and given a sling. We then had to follow up on the base and have them refer us to an Orthopedic doc for the cast.
We kept our appointment for this morning and the nurse took one look and said "Hey wait...he's more broken than the last time he was in! He's supposed to be better by now!". The doc put in our referral, so now we just wait for the notification of where we're being sent. I'm praying it's quick....I can't keep this boy immobile for long and having just a splint on is really making me wary. The boy needs an iron cast...not an ace bandaged splint.

The little man was brave yesterday and didn't hardly cry at all, but he was definitely scared. And today the pain is quite a bit worse (as expected) and Tylenol every 4 hours isn't helping. I hate when I can't make one of my babies feel better. That's my job as a mom...to take care of their hurts. And I can't do it.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Sometimes you just have to shake your head and walk away.

Note to moms: Never mix two kinds of cookies in one jar. Because if you have a son like my Jonah, you will find this after he's been trying to get the oreos from the bottom:

Those USED to be my delicious Pumpkin Chocolate Chip cookies. Now they're a big wad of crumbs.


Mommy Musings

Here's a few things for all of you mommas out there to ponder.

Isn't it funny how you long for just 5 minutes of quiet in your house, but when it actually is quiet you go in search of the kids because you know they're doing something they shouldn't be?

Why is it that I can't for the life of me get my kids to wake up for school, but on the weekends they're up before the sun??

Sometimes I wonder who the heck these kids are...and I'm convinced that they must've been switched at birth. Then I look at them and see traits of myself and my hubby and it hits me that all those stories our parents told about us really are true, no matter how much we tell them "You must have me confused with my sister/brother! Surely I couldn't have done that!"

Monday, October 25, 2010

Mmmm Mmmm Monday: Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

I have to say I think these may be my new favorite kind of chocolate chip cookie. I'm going to have to buy a ton of canned pumpkin this fall and stock it in my pantry so that I can make these babies all year long. Even my pumpkin-pie-hating sister liked them. (Yes, I make her try everything I make.)

Anyway, this recipe was just way too good not to share, so here you go!

1 cup canned pumpkin
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1 cup flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • Combine pumpkin, sugar, oil & egg. In a seperate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg & salt. Dissolve baking soda in milk and stir in. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix well.
  • Add vanilla; mix. Stir in chocolate chips.
  • Drop by spoonful on greased cookie sheet and back at 350* for 10-15 minutes or until lightly brown & firm.

I'm telling you...you won't be disappointed. I used a small scoop to make my cookies all evenly sized, and it yielded 3 dozen. The boys have been home from school for 30 minutes and between them and my sis & I, I think we're down a full dozen already. They're THAT good.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Friday Finds on Etsy: Halloween Part 2- Pumpkins

We all know that I love Halloween. The decorating, the costumes, the CANDY! And when I decorate I love to use pumpkins. They're so bright and cheery....I can't help but smile when I see them. I'm a grinnin' fool when we drive past a pumpkin patch.

Here's some of my favorites from Etsy this week:
First up are these ADORABLE bows from Madi & Bill. Now, normally I make all of Miss Sophia's bows, but I have not yet mastered this style, and oh! how I love them! And with the monogrammed pumpkin center?! Forget it!! I'm taken!
Next up is this super cute customized trick or treat bag from First Crush Designs. It's another must-have! I love all things personalized and I could envision all three of my boogers carrying these adorable bags to gather goodies- even my 9 yr old BOY.
Lastly is from my shop, Jen's Craft Corner. I so wish I would've started making these bloomers when Miss Thing was still in diapers. She would've have at least one pair for every holiday. Seriously. But since she's three now, I think the hubby would frown on her walking around in these. But wouldn't they be so adorable on a little munchkin for their first Halloween?? So there you have it. Three of my favorite pumpkin items from Etsy. Go on over and check out for yourself...there's so much greatness there!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

A Halloween Birthday Party

Last week Friday my firstborn turned nine. NINE. How is that even possible?! Anyway, he decided on a Halloween themed party and everyone came in costume. Here are my personal favorites: a shark, pirate, and bumblebee.
We had an eyeball race (think an 'egg & spoon race', only using eyeball painted ping pong balls)
...bobbed for apples And each family got to carve a pumpkin!

The hubby got home from training just in time for presents, cupcakes and the pinata.

It was definitely one of the most fun parties we've had!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Day-late Mmmm Mmmm Monday: S'mores Galore

This is another gem of a recipe from Pampered Chef. I love them. I credit Pampered Chef for me learning how to cook. Their recipes are so easy to follow...perfect! This particular one comes from my favorite cookbook ever- Delightful Desserts. Yep...a cookbook just of desserts. HEAVEN!

Here's what you need:
20 whole honey graham crackers, divided
6 bars (1.55 oz each) milk chocolate candy (Hersheys bars are perfect!) coarsely chopped.
1 pkg (16 oz) mini marshmallows, divided
3 Tbsp milk

  • Preheat oven to 350*. Arrange a single layer of graham crackers to completely cover your stoneware bar pan (if you don't have one, a cookie sheet will work too). Toast in oven for 2 minutes. Remove and let cool while you do the rest of the steps.
  • Coarsely break remaning crachers into a large bowl & set aside. Coarsely chop chocolate bars using a food chopper.
  • Combine 3 cups marshmallow, 3 Tbsp of butter and milk into a microwave safe bowl (or the PC Micro Cooker if you have one). Microwave on high 1 minute. Stir unbtil smooth. Add half of the chopped chocolate; stir until chocolate is completely melted. Using a spreader or spatula, spread mixture evenly over the toasted graham crackers in pan.
  • Melt remaining 3 Tbsp butter & toss with broken crackers. Add remaining marshmallows & chopped chocolate; toss lightly. Spoon this mixture evenly over the chocolate graham crackers in pan. Bake 8-10 minutes or until marshmallows are lightly browned. Cool 15 mintues. Cut into bars and serve.

You really will LOVE this tasty dessert...we sure do!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Yes, I'm lame.

Okay last week was a sparse posting week, this I know. I do have a recipe to share, and I do have a Friday Finds to share. But I was busy. Friday my oldest baby turned NINE! So all day long I was shopping and baking and cooking and decorating. But all my hard work paid off and the Halloween Costume Birthday Party was a HUGE hit. I am currently loading pics from the shin-dig and will be showing you all very soon. Like, later today soon. Promise.

And I will do a double Friday Finds post this week too so don't forget to check back!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Jonah-isms Part 7

It's been a long time since I've posted a Jonah-ism. These last couple of weeks have produced two great ones, so I thought I'd share.

According to the little man, the 16th President of our fine nation was none other than Mr. Abra Lincoln-ham.

Today when I had him try on his shark costume, he decided to run after his little sister yelling "Rawwwwwrrr!" I informed him that sharks don't roar and without skipping a beat he said "But I'm a tiger shark." Touche.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Friday Finds on Etsy: Halloween Pt 1- Candy Corn!

"Ooohh! Candy Corn! I hate performing on an empty stomach!"
- Heimlich, from "A Bugs Life"
Next to those super delicious candy pumpkins I buy every year, candy corn is my favorite Halloween treat. I could eat those things ALL. DAY. LONG.

Serious. I have a big bowl of them on my kitchen table and I grab a handful when I pass by. If you're a dentist reading this blog, I can imagine you shuddering where you sit. Sorry.

Anywho...like I do every week, I nosed around on Etsy and found some of the cutest candy corn items I could. There were so many I wanted to include, but then I'd be sitting my tush in this chair for too long. And since there are already too few hours in my day, I had to whittle it down to three.
Sorry to toot my own horn again, but I love Halloween so much and have alot of cute items up in my shop for this time of year, so I just had to showcase another one. I sorry. (Okay, not really. It's a shameless plug.) But you have to admit...this is a super cute headband, is it not?!Next up are these a-freakin'-dorable flip flops from Miss Priss Bowtique. These are made for toddlers but oh good heavens I want a pair for myself! I would totally sport these babies while taking the kids trick-or-treating!Last up are these great earrings from Miss Megan's. I don't have pierced ears, but I could definitely see my mom or sister wearing these. They're a great way to accessorize for Halloween but still be sophisticated!
So now go check all those shops out and make a purchase (or two or ten) and help support crafters!
Check back next week for another Halloween edition...this time featuring creepy crawly spiders!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

And the Mom of the Year Award goes to...

Someone other than me.

Jonah woke up this morning and called for me to "come here a sec". I walked into the room and he held up his bright blue splinted finger and said, "Hey momma, didn't I fracture my other finger?" I looked, and sure enough, last night after his bath I had re-wrapped the WRONG DANG FINGER.

*bangs head against computer desk*

(In my defense, however, he DID in fact break the finger that was wrapped...that was just a few months ago, and had long since healed.)

Monday, October 4, 2010

Mmmm Mmmm Monday: Stovetop Broccoli Mac & Cheese

I made this dish a week or so ago and everyone loved it. The kids devoured it, and my sis & I ate the leftovers for lunch daily and were pretty bummed when it was all gone. This recipe comes from Woman's Day's October issue and let me tell you...it's a keeper!

Here's What you need:
12 oz pasta (I used 1 lb)
4 cups broccoli florets
1 container creme fraiche (I couldn't find this in the store so I used sour cream as an alternative)
1/2 tsp hot sauce
2 and 1/2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp gound ginger
Ground black pepper to taste

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook for 7 minutes. Add broccoli and cook another 2 minutes or until pasta is tender. Drain and set aside.
Meanwhile, in a 2 qt saucepan over med heat, whisk the creme fraiche & hot sauce until simmering, about 2 minutes.
Add the Cheddar, garlic powder & ginger, then stir over low heat until just melted. Season with pepper.
Combine sauce with macaroni & broccoli, and serve. Add extra cheese if desired.

Sunday, October 3, 2010


So I know you were all anxiously awaiting my Friday Finds on Etsy post, but once again, life got in the way. I had one of those crazy weeks. Let me sum it all up for you.

Tuesday: Took Jonah to the doc because he hurt his finger over the weekend (on the other hand this time). And, you guessed it, he broke it. That makes 2 broken fingers in three months. Poor active kid. There was a few tense hours while we waited for the doc to call us back that afternoon because the xrays showed that the fracture was right along his growth plate. He wanted to have the head radiologist take a look to see if the plate was affected. If it was we would've had to go to the Orthopedic clinic on base and see what the course of action would be. Thankfully, the questionable area in the growth plate was from normal shifting for his age, and the fracture did not extend.

Thursday: I got a phone call from the hubby (he's still at school down in Georgia) and he informed me that the new assignments were doled out. We are being sent to Tinker AFB in Oklahoma City. It is NOT the assignment we were expecting or hoping for. Quite the opposite, actually. We were figuring we'd head back overseas and we were really pulling for that...the hubby wanted Germany or Alaska (somewhere cold & snowy) and I was praying for Hawaii, Japan, Guam or another equally wonderful beach locale. We were both disappointed. So my Thursday evening was pretty much a wash at that point. I didn't even cook dinner...just piled the kids in the car and headed to Chik-fil-a.

Friday: Just before I was about to head out to do my routine payday errands running, I recieved a text from the hubby saying that we had to be in Oklahoma no later than mid-January. Knowing the date was so final for me. I mentally calculated how LITTLE time I have left here in South Carolina...a place that I DO. NOT. WANT. TO. LEAVE. I fielded calls/texts all day from friends saying they didn't want us to leave. Trust me, I don't want to go either. But what can you do? Then I tried to be positive and proactive and deal. But that night when the hubby got home for the weekend, I had a meltdown and cried like a baby.

Saturday & Sunday: The hubby & I spent quite a bit of time figuring out the logistics. The BAH rates are not close to what we're making here, and from the rental rates we saw of the size homes we would need it's going to be impossible for us NOT to live on base. Luckily we have friends stationed at Tinker (although they will be PCSing themselves just a month after we arrive) and she has been so helpful already with sending me phone numbers and giving me info. We also decided that we will be moving our family in December, while the boys are on break from school. It will make their transition so much easier. And while it's the last thing I want to do...spend Christmas on the road or in a hotel...I have to think of what's best and easiest for my sweet babies.

So my friends, my life is in a state of upheaval. Add all this stress to the normal October-through-December chaos (birthdays, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas), my continuing Etsy orders (thank the Lord!), the hubby still at FLETC until December 1st, and trying to figure out how my live-in sister will get back to Florida and you have a borderline basket case. So I apologize now for any big delays in posting like I had this week. It's just crazy right now.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Mmmm Mmmm Monday: Stuffed Shell Bake

Saw the tail end of this recipe being cooked on Rachael Ray a couple weeks ago and before I could get downstairs and find it myself, my sister had found it, printed it out and put it on the counter. We tried it Saturday night and Oh. My. Heavens. It was deee-lish!

Here's what you need:
6 cloves garlic, finely chopped. Divided
1 large or 2 small/medium onions, finely chopped & divided
1 small carrot, finely chopped or grated (we didn't use the carrots but it still tasted superb!)
salt & pepper
1 and 1/2 teaspoons oregano or marjoram
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon crushed fennel seeds
2 Tbsp finely chopped fresh thyme (about 5 or 6 sprigs)
1/4 cup flat leave parsley, finely chopped
1/2 cup dry white or red wine
2 cups chicken stock
2-28 oz cans crushed tomatoes
1 pound medium or large shell pasta (not the extra-large stuffing size)
2 boxes frozen chopped spinach, defrosted and wrung dry w/a towel
1/4 tsp nutmeg (freshly ground if you have it)
2 cups fresh ricotta cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 large egg yolks, slightly beaten

In a large pot, heat 3 tbsp EVOO over medium heat. Add 4 cloves of chopped garlic, 3/4 of the finely chopped onion & the carrot. Season w/salt, pepper, oregano, red pepper flakes, fennel seeds & thyme, and gently saute 10 minutes, stirring frequently. Add in parsley, stir, then add wine and reduce 1 minute. Add stock & tomatoes, bring sauce up to a bubble, then reduce heat and simmer 45 minutes.

After sauce has been simmering 30 minutes, preheat oven to 375*.

Bring a pot of water to a boil for the pasta. Salt and cook past for 5 minutes.

While pasta water comes to a boil, heat remaining 2 Tbsp EVOO in a small skillet over medium heat. Ad remaining garlic and onion and saute to soften, about 5 minutes. Add spinach to pan, seperating as needed. Stir to combine and season with salt, pepper, & nutmeg. Turn off heat.
Drain undercooked pasta and return to the same pot. Add spinach mixture to pot along with ricotta cheese and grated Parm. Stir to combine, adjust salt & pepper, then add eggs and stir.
Pour a thin later of marinara sauce into the bottom of a 9x13 baking dish. Fill dish with pasta, then top with another layer of sauce. Save remaning sauce to pass at the table. Bake for30 minutes until bubbly.

Serve directly from casserole dish, using extra sauce and parmesan cheese to top.

And don't forget to enjoy!!

(This recipe left ALOT of marinara sauce, which makes it perfect for spaghetti another night!)

Friday, September 24, 2010

Friday Finds on Etsy: Happy Fall, y'all!

Hooray for fall! Yesterday was the official first day of fall, and while I was waiting in the pick up line for Jonah afterschool, two brown leaves fell off the tree above me and landed on my windshield. I am hoping that it's a sign that cooler weather is on its way!

So in honor of autumn (one of my FAVORITE times of the year!), here are some beautiful finds from Etsy.

First is this stunning cluster flower pin from Gogal Made . Oh how I want this brooch! There are lots of other beautiful accessories in this shop too...I could spend ALOT of money there.Next is this great scarf. Festive but oh so chic. Caustic Threads has so many great scarves and shirts. But I think that this fall themed one is definitely my favorite. Last up is this headband from my own Etsy shop. I have to plug myself once and awhile, right? Anywho..this baby has been in quite a few Etsy treasuries lately, and I'm pretty proud of that. It means someone likes me!

Go check out the great stores featured today, and again, let me know if you have a shop or know someone who would be willing to offer up a product for review or giveaway.


They helped an ailing neighbor with some housework and got paid $5 each ($2 for the little one).
They waited and waited, money in hand, for the ice cream truck.
They came to the dinner table with downcast faces.
Then came the text from the nextdoor neighbor, who was aware of their plight..."I hear the ice cream truck".
Once again, the smiles reappeared.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Mmmm Mmmm Monday: Honey-garlic Chicken

Here's another ripped-from-a-waiting-room-magazine recipe. I made this on Friday night with the Buttery Dill Carrots as a side and ALL THREE of my kids devoured it. They requested that I make it again soon. This is no small feat my friends...Sophia has been quite picky lately when it comes to food. More often than not she announces that she "will not be eating wiss you tonight". She's a diva, that one.

Anyway, here's the recipe in all it's tasty glory. Make it yourself this week...you won't be disappointed!

Here's what you need:

1/3 cup honey
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp thyme, finely chopped
1 tbsp rosemary, finely chopped
2.5 pounds bone-in chicken thighs, trimmed of fat (about 6 pieces)
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper

Heat oven to 400*. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.
In a small bowl, stir together honey, garlic, thyme and rosemary.
Place chicken thighs on prepared sheet and sprinkle with salt & pepper. Brush with honey mixture and bake for 40 minutes, brushing with remaning mixture every 10 minutes (or until internal meat temperature reaches 160*).

It's that easy!!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Friday Finds on Etsy: Pretty as a Peacock

Yes, I realize it's once again Saturday. My Fridays have been so busy lately that I just can't always find the time to sit down and blog. I sorry.
Anyway, I am loving all of the peacock feather I'm seeing everywhere now. The colors are so beautiful and vibrant. So once again I perused Etsy to see what unique peacock items I could find, and here they are.

This first one is a great wreath from Knock Knocking. I just LOVE the different hues. They make me happy. Next up is this fun pendant from Analiese Designs. I have a handful of her items and everytime I wear one I get compliments from everyone. She's a great assest to Etsy! And lastly is this stunning infant headband from Lilly Bella Bows. This is another shop that I frequent and her quality of items is just perfect. KC is truly a sweetheart! This headband would be so amazing on any little princess...especialy for a wedding or special occasion.
Sorry that there's no giveaways lined up. Again, if anyone owns an Etsy shop or knows someone who does and may be interested in letting me do a review/giveaway of their items, please contact me and let me know!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Call me old-fashioned...

...but there are a handful of things I read/witnessed today that I just couldn't get over. And that I don't agree with AT. ALL.

*School dances for kids younger than middle school. Jonah came home today with a flyer for the Open House on Thursday, and then a dance to follow. Ummm....whaaaa?? My son is in FIRST GRADE folks. First grade. Not sixth or tenth. And it's for the whole school....which means Pre-k through second grade. NOPE. Not gonna happen. (Noah's school is having a dance later this month as well, and no, my fourth grade son will not be attending his school dance either.)

*People driving down the road outside of the school parking lot with their kids unbuckled/hanging out the window of the car. Where is the common sense people??

*A mother sending her 9/10 year old son into the Dollar Store with a $5 bill so that he can pay for her three pregnancy tests. I dont care how bad your English is, don't send your son in for your dang tests. Let him be your interpreter, but don't send him in on his own.

*This one didn't happen today, but rather last week. And I wasn't witness to it, but it happened to my hubby's neice, so I heard about it from my sister-in-law. Schools should NOT suspend a student for showing up to school wearing a shirt that reads "Virginity Rocks". (Yes, sadly this happened to my neice on her first day of school.) You allow people to wear their gay pride shirts, wear various other awareness items, but you suspend a teenage girl for taking a stand and being smart? Not cool, public school system. Not cool at all.

Okay. I'm off my soap box for now. But be prepared...this may become a series for me. Because lately I'm realizing that there are way too many things that are considered "okay" for our youth that shouldn't be.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Mmmm Mmmm Monday: Southern Sweet Tea

When we found out we were moving to the South, my hubby couldn't stop talking about how he couldn't wait to drink sweet tea all the time. Until now I haven't had much success with making it myself, but I found this recipe in Southern Living* and I'm sure it'll be a hit!

3 cups water
2 family-sized tea bags
1/2 to 1 cup sugar
7 cups cold water

Bring 3 cups water to a boil in a saucepan; add tea bags. Boil 1 minute and remove from heat. Cover and steep 10 minutes.
Remove and discard tea bags. Add desired amount of sugar, stirring until dissolved. Pour into a 1 gallon container and add the 7 cups of cold water. Serve over ice.

I plan on making a big pitcher this weekend for the hubby and sis to taste test...I'm hoping for good results!

*Confession: I may or may not have ripped this recipe out of the Southern Living magazine in the waiting room at Sophia's ENT appointment this morning. And I may or may not have yanked out another equally good and can't-wait-to-try-it recipe from another periodical at said office. That's what they get for making us wait 45 minutes past our appointment time to be seen!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Friday, September 10, 2010

Friday Finds on Etsy: The Kitchen Diva

I love cooking, and recently in the last few years, I've begun to enjoy baking. So I was perusing Etsy for some fun baking/cooking items and found these gems. I want ALL of them.

First, you need some recipe cards. These GREAT ones are from Wide Sarcasm Sea.I've been married to my hubby for 9.5 years, and up until a couple of years ago, my mother-in-law really did think that I couldn't cook. I have lots of lovely stories. *Insert eye roll here*
Next you need the proper cooking/baking attire. Tell me that this shirt from The Bold Banana isn't awesome. I dare ya.
And of course, when you're done with your tasty creation, you always have to clean up. Do it in style with these dish gloves from ImagineAprons. Even I wouldn't mind doing the dishes with these babies!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Ever have one of those mornings?

I drove the kids to school AND went to Walmart like this today. Didn't even notice it until I got home. Thank goodness Walmart is virtually empty at 7:30 in the morning.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Friday Finds on Etsy: End of Summer BBQ

Yes, I realize that today is Saturday. I had this post half done and then my dang computer froze up on me. Technology is so wonderful, ain't it? *Shakes head.*

Anywho, with it being Labor Day weekend and the unofficial end to summer, I thought that I'd do a post about everyone's favorite holiday weekend pastime: the barbecue. We were pretty bummed in our house this summer when the hubby had to go to training starting in July, because it meant that we couldn't have our usual weekend bbq's. True, he has been home most every weekend, but we try to save it for family time and so bbq's went by the wayside this year. But the ones we did have were always a blast!
So of course I had to go check out Etsy to see what great bbq ideas they had. And look what I found!
First up are these CUTE invites from The Zesty Desk. These are perfect for those organized bbq planners...which I am not. Our bbq's are usually planned the morning of, and we send out a mass text to all our friends and hope that no one's busy. But if I could ever get my weekends under control, THESE would be the invites I'd buy! Next up is this great platter from Lenny Mud. I really want something like this for the hubby, so that he doesn't have to use the flowery platter that we currently have for everyday use. I'm sure he gets a good ribbing from "the guys" every time he grills. And a Southern bbq wouldn't be complete without a rousing game of Cornhole. These great boards are from Beverly's Butterflies. There are other sets to choose from, but I picked these out to celebrate the start of college football (Hooray! Let's go Noles and Let's go State!).
Doesn't all that make you want to fire up the grill and throw on some burgers & dogs?
Hope everyone has a safe and fun Labor Day weekend. Bring on Fall!!