Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Sunday Dinner

Here is a picture of my new "necessary" kitchen appliance. :)
I LOVE this new crockpot. I'd been looking at it for months but just couldn't bring myself to spend $65 on it. The reason I wanted this specific crockpot is because it has 3 interchangable pots - in 2, 4 and 6 quart sizes. FINALLY it went on sale to over 50% off and I snatched it up!! I think Walmart got a damaged shipment and that's why it was on sale.

We also have a new favorite Sunday Dinner
 ...Crockpot Country Pork Ribs. We love them so much we've had them 3 out of the past 5 Sundays! They are so simple to make and taste so wonderful. I cover them with Apple Cider Vinegar, add salt, pepper and garlic and let cook on high for about 1 hour. Then I add a few tablespoons of worshestire sauce, approx 1/2 - 3/4 cup of ketchup and 1/3 cup of brown sugar. Then I let it cook on high for a few more hours and switch it to the low setting cooking until the meat falls off the bones. It's so incredibly tender and has a great tangy taste!! I don't add barbeque sauce to the pot - I let each person add their own to their meat. My husband works the night shift and always brings the leftovers with him to work on Sunday night. He said the other guys drool while they watch him eat it.

I also used another wonderful timesaving appliance this weekend! My breadmaker! I actually seem to use it more just to make dough for rolls than I do to actually make the bread. I use the "dough" setting because it's so easy. You just dump in the ingredients and after an hour and a half the dough has done it's first rise and is ready to be formed into rolls. I dump it out onto my floured counter, tear off balls of dough  
and shape them into rolls.

Here is a picture of the rolls before the second rising....

And about 45 min later...after sitting covered on top of the warm oven.

Here's the finished product...after being brushed with honey butter.

Mmmmm....melt in your mouth good!!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Mum Season

Autumn is here!! And that means MUM Season!! I love getting new Mums in the fall and this year I found the best mums I've ever bought. In Jefferson City, the Kmart parking lot is home to the Farmers Market. An amish family was selling these mums at 3 for $20!! And these mums are HUGE! At our local greenhouse I would have had to pay $20 for ONE mum of this size. You'll also see our wood rack on the front porch - all ready and waiting for the wood to be stacked on it to be burned in our wood burning stove this winter!

Here are two of the mums - I put them on our deck in the back yard. They were almost too big for the pots that I have. The leaves are starting to fall, too. More proof that Autumn is here!

Cake in a Cup

A friend of mine sent me a recipe for a yummy QUICK chocolate fix. It's easy to make and tastes pretty good, too. You mix it all up in a coffee mug, pop it in the microwave for 5 min and tip it out onto a plate. You can top it with ice cream, strawberries and coolwhip for a quick dessert. I made mine using Dark chocolate cocoa and it was great, but really rich - I couldn't finish the whole thing!! My daughter loved hers, too. Here's the recipe:
4 tablespoons flour
4 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons cocoa
1 egg
3 tablespoons milk
3 tablespoons oil
3 tablespoons chocolate chips (optional)
A small splash of vanilla extract
1 large coffee mug (MicroSafe)
Add dry ingredients to mug, and mix well. Add the egg and mix thoroughly. Pour in the milk and oil and mix well.. Add the chocolate chips (if using) and vanilla extract, and mix again. Put your mug in the microwave and cook for 3 minutes at 1000 watts. The cake will rise over the top of the mug, but don't be alarmed! Allow to cool a little, and tip out onto a plate if desired.

My Craigslist Treasure

Craigslist is now my friend!! :) Here is my newest treasure from Craigslist. I bought a pair of these orange chairs for $45!! They were in excellent condition, but the cushions were UGLEEE!! Who wants 1970 orange cushions?? NOT me! Made a trip to JoAnn Fabrics and found this chocolate brown fabric on the clearance rack and I took the cushions to a local furniture reupholsterer. He did a great job and made my chairs look like new! I am so happy with the finished product! (BTW - the pictures are in the wrong order. Orange is Before, Brown is After)

Abraham Lincoln's Home

In July we met my parents in Springfield, Illinois. This is 1/2 way between each of us - so we only each have to drive about 31/2 hours. We decided to make it a trip to visit Abraham Lincoln's home. Above is a picture of a bike that looks like only Abe would have been tall enough to ride.
I took a picture of copy of the letter that Mr Lincoln wrote to the citizens of Springfield before he left for Washington DC to become the President of the United States. In this letter, he gives all credit to God for all things that he succeeded in. He also talks about how he will be sad to leave them but is comforted because he knows that God will continue to be with them and with him when he goes to Washington. This letter really made an impression on me - it was even further proof to me that this country was founded by men who believed in GOD.

Everywhere we went in the neighborhood where Lincoln lived the tour guides were dressed in costumes from that era. Tori loved the costumes. The taller man is dressed in clothing that is a replica of Lincolns suit. The women below dressed how his wife Martha would have dressed. They even had on petticoats and hoops!! Tori wishes she could dress like this now. I think she would be tired of it REALLY quick!!

Below is a picture of Lincoln's home. My dad has a picture of his father sitting on the back porch of this house. The picture was taken when my dad was young. My dad thought it would be neat to have his picture taken sitting in the same spot so we took his picture there, too.

Summer Fun

Every fall we go to the local craft fairs in our area and every year there is a Tye Dye clothing booth. My daughter has always wanted to buy a shirt and every time I tell her we can make her own. Last christmas I got her a tye-dye kit and we finally got around to use it over the summer. She was so impressed with how the shirts turned out. Here they are:
I think they turned out pretty good, too!!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

My daughter and I have spent the last few Saturdays wandering around downtown Fulton, MO - a historic small town about 10 miles from where we live and also the town where I work. We are kind of hooked on browsing the antique stores and second hand shops. There are so many interesting things to look at and some things that are practically brand new which you can pick up for next to nothing. I have spent less than $30 since we've been doing this and here's what I've picked up....

-3 pair of jeans for my daughter - $3 each = $9
-a beautiful BIG basket with swinging handles(Longaberger style quality, different brand) - $8
- Rosette pastry irons - $4
- antique pressing iron - $5
- All Recipe's cookbook(brand new condition) - $3.00

I think I was able to find a lot - for not a lot of money!

Here is the antique iron that I bought. It was covered in rust and filthy, but I've learned that sometimes you have to add a little elbow grease to get some of these used items looking like new. I covered it in cooking oil, let it soak in and then scrubbed and scrubbed it with steel wool. Now it looks like new!

The Rosette Pastry irons that we picked up were mostly for my daughter. Although I definitely enjoyed them myself :)

The first time I made Rosettes I was in 7th grade Home-Ec class. I told my daughter about it and since she had never heard of nor tasted Rosettes, she wanted to try to make them. We whipped up a batch of batter from a recipe I found online and got to work....we ended up with waaaayyyyy more than we could eat, but they sure were tasty!! We both ate our fill and ended up throwing the rest away the next day because they were soggy, but it was fun making them.

Here's what they looked like.

Proof of something fun you can find in a second hand store :)

The Simple Things

Around my house, animals are just part of our life. From the decor of our den(wildlife theme) to the 4(yes I said FOUR) dogs that we have, something is always going on that involves animals. We love watching the different kinds of wildlife that seem to be attracted to our yard too - especially the squirrels because they are so entertaining.

Last fall we had some old dead hollow branches cut out of the tree next to our house. After the branches were cut down and we started cleaning up the branches we found more than just old branches and twigs laying on the ground.

We also found TWO SQUIRREL TAILS!!!!

Apparently there were two squirrels hiding in the branch that needed to be cut down and we didn't know it!!! The next day our squirrels were running around with 1/2 their tails missing - we felt so terrible!!! They seemed to be fine, but we thought they looked so silly with their stubby tails!!

My hubby felt bad that we had cut down their home, so he started looking for a new home for them. He found a cool looking house for them made out of an old tire - sounds strange but it actually looked like it would make a great house for them.

After he hung it in the tree, they didn't go near it. We were disappointed because we figured that since they lost their home, they would leave.

I guess that wasn't the case because just a few weeks ago,

THIS is what we saw coming out of the house....

...actually there were THREE of them. It was so fun to watch them climb out of the house a little at a time and learn how to hang on climb the branches. Before we knew it they were chasing each other round and round and jumping from branch to branch. They were so cute!!

Sometimes it's the Simple things in life that bring us so much pleasure!! God sure has created some wonderful things for us to enjoy!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Three Knuckleheads

Back in mid December I spent the day with my sister in law Karen and my 2 nephews and niece(Justin, Eric and Kaley). We spent part of the day at the mall. It was a crazy day but we had a good time. Before we decided to go to the mall Justing kept hinting that it would be a great way to "get ideas of things he could ask Santa to bring him". I guess he really wanted to go!! :)One of our stops in the mall was to the Build-A-Bear workshop where the kids drooled over the different animals available. They "begged" to take one home so we kept telling them that maybe that would be something they could add to their list for Santa. Karen did end up getting them each a mini stuffed animal to tide them over though. Well...lo and behold...look who got to build their own "bear"??? They sure look excited don't they? What a bunch of knuckleheads!

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Chef Victoria

Last night Tori decided she wanted to do some baking on her own. She LOVES the Lemon Poppyseed Scones that her grandma makes whenever she visits, so we bought all the ingredients that were needed for the recipe. Tori did a great job making them. The only thing she needed help with was grating the lemon peel off the lemon so I helped her with that!! The recipe makes 8 to 10 scones, but Tori decided to make them a little bigger than usual and we ended up with only 6 HUGE scones!! Each one is a meal in itself and SO tasty!! We put a little extra lemon glaze frosting than normal on each one so with each bite you get that tangy lemon flavor. Here are a few pictures of Tori's super-size scones. And a picture of Tori with her grandma Lynda. They are two peas in a pod.

Thursday, January 29, 2009


in case you are wondering where I came up with the name of my blog page.. I have my wonderful friend Thao to thank for giving me the idea. :) She's also the one who suggested I create a blog page!! The name she suggested was so perfect for me - I have this saying posted in my kitchen and see it everyday! I love it!

Live ~ each day to it's fullest!
Laugh ~ all the time!
Love ~ with all your heart!

Thanks Thao for the suggestion and thanks for always being such a great friend to me!!

new blogger

Hello to all my friends and family who are reading my blog page. This is my first blogging site so please bear with me...hopefully I'll get better at it as time goes on. I guess the goal here is just to write about what is going on in your daily life and post pictures of family, events and interests that you have...we'll see how this goes :)