Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Wednesday Hodgepodge

I've been missing in the "blogging world" the past 2-3 weeks but am so glad to be back with Joyce and the Wednesday Hodgepodge today.  

1. Something you've seen recently that's 'cuter than a June bug'?

I mean, do you not agree!  This is Case perched on one of the many HUGE rocks in Dogwood Canyon.  We toured the canyons during our time in Branson last week.  Case thought he was a big as the rest of the kids and bless his little heart, wherever they trekked, he trekked right behind him.  His Momma had just bought him his first pair of Crocs a few days before the trip and that boy loved them.  Yes, he truly is as "cute as a June bug." 

2. Tell us something about where you were and what you were doing in June of 1988? If you weren't born yet, June of 1998. Or if that doesn't work, June of 2008. 

Heaven's to Betsy, the above photo was taken near that time and it appears we were likely dressed and ready for church.  Big hair surely must have been "the thing" at that time or at least Bridget and I must have thought it was. ~chuckle~ But, I'm pretty sure we looked about like all the other Moms and daughters of that time.

3. A place in your home or outdoor space where you feel 'snug as a bug in a rug'? 

In my recliner with my afghan over me.  It is without a doubt my favorite place to land in the evenings.  If we have no plans for the evening, you will find me there between 6:00 - 6:30 PM and I'll likely be there until I go to bed.  I rarely sit down any other time of the day but come evening, I'm all about sitting and reclining.

4. June is National Fresh Fruits and Vegetable Month. Do you normally get your 4-5 servings each day? What's a favorite summer dish you make/serve/like to be served-ha! made with one of your favorite summer fruits. A favorite summer dish made with a favorite summer veg? How do you feel about cooking in the summer months? 

I definitely do NOT get 4-5 servings of fruits and veggies per day.

I'm not a huge fruit lover but I do enjoy blueberries a lot and I make a great Blueberry Nut Bread, delicious Blueberry Muffins, and a great Blueberry Pound Cake with fresh blueberries in the summer.  I enjoy all of them equally so it would hard to pick a favorite.

I am a veggie lover and corn rates right at the top of my list of an all time favorite, not just a summer favorite.  I'll take it creamy, in a casserole, plain but am not a fan of "on the cob."

I have to admit that I do not do much cooking for Tommy and me.  If I cook then we're likely having company and I do enjoy cooking for company.  We live off of grilled sandwiches, BLT's and the such in the summer.  I cook a whole lot more in the winter because we are big fans of soups, stews, chili and gumbo.

I love to bake and generally I bake cookies at least twice a week.  Thankfully I have a whole lot of will power and generally only eat one out of each batch then I package them in freezer containers and over time share them with friends.

5. Do you have a summer reading list? If so share a title or two we can add to our own. 

I just ordered these 3 because they were all recommended as GREAT reading by some of my friends.  And, Francine Rivers is one of my all time favorite authors.  I use to read all the time but haven't as much in recent years.  Maybe this summer I'll get back with it.

6. Insert your own random thought here. 

This is just a few of the many, many pictures snapped on our family trip to Branson, Mo.  Most of you know that the intent of the trip was to celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary.  And, celebrate we did!  We stayed at Eagle Ridge Bed and Breakfast (rented the entire house) and it suited our needs wonderfully.  The owner happens to be the son of Tommy's 1st cousin and he and his wife are exceptional cooks.  Breakfast comes with the stay and if you want them to cook any other meals they will gladly do so for an extra charge.  They fixed dinner each evening for us and hit it out of the ballpark each time.  It was the perfect place for our celebration and now we're working on our 51st year.

Monday, May 24, 2021

A Random Catch-Up

I've been MIA here at the blog the past 2-3 weeks and thought it was time for a "catch-up" post.  I'm sure you all were wondering where I've been and what I've been up to. ~chuckle~

Now, if you know me at all then you know I LOVE advance planning.  And, I pray that the above pictured marble stone is wayyyyy advance planning.  Hubby and I have discussed our personal desires for our final arrangements in regards to burial.  I decided some years ago that if I had my preference I would be buried in a mausoleum.  Everything is so neat, orderly and beautiful (well, at least the one where we bought our spaces is).  We began seriously discussing our desires a few months back and decided that we would go and secure our crypts  in a nearby mausoleum.  They only had a couple left that were at a height (from the floor) that we desired.  So, we bought them and had the brass lettering placed on them.  All that will need to added is our date of death.  I know to many this is likely rather morbid, but I love that our children or the surviving spouse will NOT have to make this decision and it has been decided and taken care of in advance of the need.  We  still have a few other decisions that I would like for us to go ahead and make in regards to our final arrangements.  We are both so pleased with our crypts and I'm especially happy that I will NOT be buried in the ground. ~smile~  Of course, I have such peace knowing that it matters NOT where I am buried, I'm going straight to be with my Lord and Savior and walking the streets of gold.

Our little Merry Sunshine (Andi Kate) graduated from Kindergartner this past week.  Seems it was just yesterday that she was born and now she's about to be a first grader.  Can I just say that her gorgeous red hair was so pretty with her green robe and cap.

And, this girl! Well, she just finished up 5th grade and brought home some awesome end of year awards.  She had the top award for Accelerated Reading, all A's for the year and was voted most Christlike.  Talk about proud!  And, the only award she knew she was getting was the all A's award, the other 2 were huge surprises.  She is blossoming into such a lovely young lady.

Clancy just finished up 6th grade with all A's and is now headed to Jr. High. So hard to believe! Last week he found some lumber in their barn and asked his Mom is he could make a chair out of it. Bridget told him to "go for it."  Well, I'd say he did a really good job for his first woodworking project.  He's such a multi-talented young man.

And, this little guy, well, he finished up Pre-K and can hardly wait to get to Kindergartner.  The day this picture was taken was PJ day and when Coleman smiles he definitely smiles with his entire face.  Such a cutie!!!

And, God love our little Case.  He recently took a tumble and scraped his nose and face.  But, bless him, he didn't let it get him down for long.  He was up and going and had a big smile.

I took the girls to see their Great Poppa the other day.  It was their first time to see him in about 15 months.  It was a sweet reunion.  So thankful this time last year is now a distant memory.

Some of you may remember that I've been having tear duct issues the past 2-3 months.  Well, I had tear duct surgery last week and, while I did survive, I thought I might have a nervous breakdown.  Not over pain (I was good and numbed up) but I could still feel what the Dr. was doing and it literally gave me the "hibby jibbies."  The upper tear duct on my right eye had never fully formed, so he basically made me a tear duct.  Yes, that's right, I didn't even know that we had an upper tear duct and I certainly didn't know that one could be made.  Goodness, modern medicine is so amazing.  And, I have healed beautifully, still have a bruise but it fades a little more everyday.  I never had pain, aggravating discomfort but hopefully no more dry eye for this gal. Yea!

AND, I end with this............Tommy and I will be celebrating our 50th, yes, 50th anniversary in just a few days on June 6th.  Above is pictured an 18 (6 weeks shy of my 19th birthday) year old innocent, immature, gullible girl who truly had no idea what she was doing.  But, hey, ignorance is bliss and thankfully I married an "older" guy (he's 5 1/2 years older than me) that did know what he was doing.

Thankfully he was a patient guy and supported me through many tears as I pined for family that lived 1000 miles away.  Remember that was wayyyyy before cell phones and email. We were poor as church mice in those days and I wrote long "snail mail" letters and called and talked to my parents every 2 weeks for a mere 10 minutes. 

To sum it up in as few of words as with any couple, we've had our ups and downs, and our tears and laughter but, we both made a commitment that we WOULD be one until "death do us part." Thankfully, the Lord has been with us every step of the way and He has blessed us wayyyy more than we deserve and we give Him the credit for this milestone.

We will be celebrating this milestone with our kids and their families beginning this weekend .  They are our greatest accomplishment and we couldn't think of a better way to celebrate than for all of us to be together.  We have rented a beautiful  bed and breakfast in the  mountains of Branson, Missouri. It has the perfect accommodations for our crew. We look forward to a grand celebration!

And, that's it for this "Random Catch-Up." 

Wednesday, May 5, 2021

A May Hodgepodge

1. What's something you 'may' do this month?
Since things are getting "somewhat" back to normal I'm wanting to get back in the habit of having people into our home.  I'm thinking of having some ladies over for coffee and cookies and I just "may" do that this month.  I have a freezer absolutely full of cookies and other baked items, so that part is ready. 

2. Last time you literally or figuratively shouted mayday!

Well, I didn't say mayday, but I hollered very loudly and Hubby did come running.  While putting up dishes a couple of years ago I dropped a white Corelle Ware dinner plate and can I just tell you that it did not break, it exploded!  It was much like the picture above except that this picture shows it after it was swept into a pile.  We picked up pieces of that plate for the next week.  It was unbelievable!  So, between my hollering and Hubby hearing the "explosion" he wasn't sure what he was going to find when he entered the kitchen. 

3. Let the chips fall where they may, come what maymaybe, Cape Maymayflies, devil may care, you may now kiss the bride,  much to our dismaymayhem, mayonnaise...choose a 'may' word or phrase from the list and tell us how it relates to your life in some way right now. 

I often think to myself, "let the chips fall where they may" concerning situations. There are usually always situations that I need to do that and sometimes I really want to help those chips fall where I "think" they should go.  Generally not a good idea.

4. If someone were serving you breakfast in bed this weekend, what would you like to see on the menu?

I love, love breakfast but the funny thing is I rarely eat it unless we go out or we are traveling.  Give me some scrambled eggs, crispy fried bacon and a biscuit with grape jelly and I'm a happy gal.  Oh, and of course, a piping hot cup of coffee!

5. Tell me one true thing you believe about motherhood. 

My sweet Momma told me this shortly after I had our firstborn.  It didn't mean all that much to me until years later.  No matter their age you are still their Mom.  And, sometimes it's hard to remember not to give them "Motherly advice" even when they are wayyyy past grown. ~smile~ 

6. Insert your own random thought here.

With Mother's Day this Sunday I've thought of my Mom more than usual these past days. She passed away 12 1/2 years ago and at times it only seems like a few days ago.  The suddenness of her death took me down a very dark path for a good while. But in time I realized how good the Lord was to take her on and not leave her here in the condition the massive stroke left her in.  She was such a Godly woman with such a quiet and gentle spirt.  I am blessed to still be learning from the example she set.

And, a Happy Mother's Day to each of you! 

Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Prime Purchases

Yes, it's that time again, time for Prime Purchases and I think there's some really good ones this month. Grab your coffee, tea or favorite drink and enjoy!


I had been seeing these advertised on TV and the more I saw them the more I thought I might enjoy having a set.  I figured that Amazon would have them so I checked there before going to the website advertised with the Spurtles on the TV ad.  I LOVE them and have used them daily since getting them. They are a combination of a spoon and spatula.  I'm a sucker for a new kitchen gadget or utensil.



Okay, if you do very much slicing then I highly recommend this mandoline.  I ordered both myself and our daughter one and she slices 3-4 times a week.  She said this put her old one to shame. It is so well made, easy to use and even comes with gloves to wear while you are using it if you so desire. I will not use it all that much but I will sure enjoy it when I do.


Clarks really "upped" their game a few years ago in their shoe style.  I wanted a pair of navy wedge sandals and these are perfect.  They are very stylish, comfortable and they come in more colors and  are reasonably priced.  It's a win all the way around!


My friend, Katie, over at Preppy Empty Nester, had this on her Prime Purchases last month and I decided to give it a try.  I have had a couple of others that just were not all they were cracked up to be.This one is definitely the best I have ever owned and it reaches all of my back.


I had never heard or seen these until a couple of months ago when the Gran girls brought them over.  I was so intrigued and played with one of them myself.  I decided that it might be something my Dad would enjoy so I ordered him one.  He definitely thought it was interesting and he has "played " with it from time to time.  If you've never seen one, you push the pops thru on one side and it makes a popping sound.  Then you turn it over and push them back to the other side. It's silent when you push them back through.  A very cleaver invention for sure!  If you are one of those folks that like to fidget then you need one of these.  They come in lots of designs and colors.  All of our Grans love them!


Most of you know that I love to bake cookies and I give most all of them away.  So, I'm always looking for cute ways to package them.  These bags are perfect and I add one of my cute labels from Etsy and they have a very "official" look.


A dear friend gave me some of this a year or so ago and it is probably the best vanilla I have ever used.  Needless to say, I use a whole lot of vanilla in baking and I needed another bottle and checked Amazon and there it was.  And, I love the bottle, so attractive!  And, it does make a great gift.



This is a beautiful pewter looking tray.  I say pewter looking because it is actually recycled aluminum. The beaded edge is such a lovely touch and it makes a great tray for me to use for my long loaf pound cakes.


And, here's the size loaf pan that fits the above tray to a "t."   It comes as a set of 2, so that's a good reason to just double the recipe, make 2 and freeze one.  And, of course, if you are into bread making, these would work great for that too.


I have been a huge fan of Thymes air fragrance for years.  I like to have it in all of our baths and let me assure you that IT ONLY TAKES ONE QUICK SPRAY!!!  Some folks have had to learn that the hard way by spraying it way to much and the fragrance fills the entire house. ~big laugh~  Lavender and Gold are my 2 favorite Thymes fragrances.


I was in need of new longer length cami's.  I have probably had my old ones 7-8 years and they are almost worn completely out.  I wear a cami everyday!  And, I love the longer length and if you need them to be tunic length they can be or you don't have to pull them down that far and they will be regular length.  These are made of a bamboo/rayon mix, so soft and comfy.



We have big (and heavy) pots on either side of our front porch.  I use artificial plants in them and got these this go around.  They generally last a couple of years before they start to get ragged looking from the wind and the dust.  I'm hoping these will fare better than the last ones.  These are shorter and hopefully the wind will not whip them around as much.  They are well anchored in the pots with sand and rocks but the wind played havoc with our last ones that were tall.  It's taken me almost 6 years to figure out what will work with all the wind we get here on this hill.  It can sure be aggravating!


I recently had the sprayer break on one of my essential oil fragrances.  I found this and decided to give it a try.  Well, I was more than a little impressed when it arrived.  It is so, so pretty and the atomizer works great as well.  It looks so impressive setting on the mirrored tray in our bathroom.It looks sooo much more expensive than the $6.99 that it cost.


I love backpack purses when we travel.  They make carrying a purse sooooo much easier.  I ordered this one to use on our upcoming family trip to Branson.  It also has a shoulder strap should I want to carry it that way.  It has outside  pockets that will hold your phone, a bottled beverage or whatever your heart desires. It comes it lots of fabulous colors and is made of a really nice faux leather.


This is the cutest purse charm or key chain!  I'm using it on my backpack "just because" I love all the colors and it adds a certain "sass" to the bag.  There are lots to choose from but this one caught my eye. I think they would make a neat gift as well

That's all folks!  Now, go and have yourself a wonderful day and remember to be the sunshine in someone's cloudy day.

Friday, April 30, 2021

Friday Favorites

It's time for more Friday's a few of mine.

These are two of my favorite candies.  I like to grab one of each after dinner.  Together they are only about 80 calories and they really satisfy that "sweet craving" for me.

I have had neck issues for about 7 years.  Now, my neck doesn't hurt at all but the pain between my shoulder blades, across my shoulders and partially down my arms can be tough at times. I ask my Neurologist why, if I had neck issues, my neck doesn't hurt.  He chuckled and explained why I experience the discomfort in those areas.  Anyway, can I just tell you that in recent months IcyHot Dry Spray has become my best friend.  Someone told me about it and I immediately purchased some and I use it quite regularly.  I love the ease of application and that it is NOT the least bit messy.  Definitely a favorite!

Surprise! Surprise! More bird decor.  I found this on Wayfair and it was the perfect piece for our mantle.  It was a natural color so I spray painted it a bronze, added the greenery and the fairy lights. I am most happy with the results.

I love, love this time of year and our yard.  It gets more beautiful with each new day.  And, the green grass is like "icing on the cake."  Hubby planted rye grass last fall and it has thrived and we had green grass throughout the winter. All the landscape is thriving with new growth and blooms and it makes me happy. It's a favorite this week for sure!  NOTE: In case you noticed, yes, that's Amazon packages by the front door.  I did not even notice them until after I had taken the picture. ~big chuckle~ 

Heavens to Betsy!  I did not know what I missing in these nutrition teas and shakes until recent months.  We have a little shoppe about 3 miles from our house and I was in that area and decided to get a tea.  Well, I should have never done it because I thoroughly enjoyed it.  Then on my next visit I got one of the shakes and now I treat myself to one of the shakes for my lunch once a week.  And, I generally get a couple of teas a week.  I can hardly believe the teas have little to no calories and the shakes are under 300.  Yes, they are a favorite for sure.  And, it doesn't hurt that I made friends with the owners and enjoy visiting with them while I'm there. 

And, this man right here, well, he's our pastor and he's right at the top of my list of favorite preachers. He brings the Word Sunday in and Sunday out in such a simple and direct way and  always leaves us with lots of "food for thought."  I love how he applies each sermon to our lives and encourages us in our walk with the Lord.