Friday, November 30, 2012

Friday's Letters


Always fun to write letters on Friday.  Thanks Ashley for being a lovely hostess each week!

Dear Trans-Siberian Orchestra, I do believe that if you were going to be in my "neck of the woods" this holiday season that I would come to one of your concerts.  Your music has grown on me and I "think" I really enjoy you.  You have a  cool sound!

Dear Hostess Twinkies, I knew you had been around a long, long time but I had no idea you were 80 years old.  My goodness! I loved you as a little girl and I felt very special on the days that I was privileged to have one of you.  It's a sad day knowing that you will no longer be around and that my Grandchildren will not know the thrill of having you as a snack.  How sad!

Dear Post A Notes, You are one of the dandiest items around and I am sorry that I was not the inventor of you.  I mean, you come in all shapes and sizes and have a bazillion uses and folks are addicted to you.  How much better can it get?  You are never very far from me, that's for sure.  I find uses for you everyday.

Dear Pandora, Can I just say that I love you!  I can listen to any type of music that my heart desires at any time of the day.  I love having you at my fingertips!  And, you are FREE!  I am, how good can it get????

Dear Christmas Season, You have gotten off to a great start and I'm already enjoying you.  Please keep me mindful of the real reason for this season and remind me to share the joy of that  reason with those that I come in contact with everyday.   

Dearest Momma, Tomorrow will mark the 4th anniversary of your death.  As sad as it was and as hard as it was for me, I would not take anything in the world for the privilege of being at your side when you entered heaven's gates.  It was an indescribable feeling to know that you went straight into the arms of Jesus.  I wonder if I will ever get over missing you.  There's just no one like our Momma's and no one is as interested in every aspect of our lives.  I miss talking to you everyday and knowing that you could give me such sound wisdom, no matter what we might be discussing.  Life has certainly never been the same without you, but it has gone on and it always will until the day that He calls me home as well. I love you Momma and can only hope that I will leave as rich a heritage to my children as you did to yours.   

Thanks for stopping by............

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Wednesday Hodgepodge

  1.Which do you prefer-pretty gift wrap with a bow or a pretty gift bag with/without a bow?  What percentage of your holiday gifts are currently (as in right this very minute) wrapped in some form or fashion?
Well, I prefer a beautifully wrapped gift with embellishments of bows and ribbon to co-ordinate with the paper.  I'm all into packaging!  I use to have a gift packaging business, aptly named, "It's A Wrap" and I did ordinary wrapping or created baskets, boxes or you name it with flair.  It was such fun but almost all consuming at this time of year.  I "retired" from it 4 years ago.  Anyway, back to my answer...........all the gifts I have bought are wrapped and ready and I'm pretty much through, guess I still have a couple to get.  But, I must confess, they are all wrapped in pretty paper to match my tree but I'm not sure that they will be embellished in high fashion.  We shall see...........

2.  What is one item on your Christmas list this year?
I truly cannot think of one thing to ask for.  Hubby and I were just talking about this very thing this morning as I was on my way out the door to get the final crown on my tooth implant.  As I closed the door, with a chuckle he said, "Merry Christmas."  Well, I think it would qualify as a very nice Christmas present.  It took 8 months to complete and cost a whopping $4000 and you can't get much more personal than a tooth implant can you?  ~big laugh~

3.  What makes a home?

The folks that live in the house and the love and the memories they have made and continue to make together make a home.  I've been blessed to live in homes where a lot of love and memories have been shared all of my 60 years.

4.  Motown founder Berry Gordy celebrates his birthday on Hodgepodge Day-November 28th. Are you a fan of the Motown sound?  If so, who's your favorite Motown artist and/or song? Here's a list in case you're stuck.
Oh,my goodness, I love, love Motown.  It just doesn't get much better than The Temptations singing "My Girl" and The Supremes singing "Baby Love."  I grew up on these songs and still know every word of them.  

5.  Red or green-which one is more prevalent in your closet?
Definitely red!  I do best in a "tomato red" and while I like green, I prefer sage green, and it is a most difficult color to find.  I can carry off a Christmas red but I do NOT wear Christmas green at all.

6.  True or false-bacon makes it better? If you answered true, what's your favorite dish made with bacon?

TRUE!! Bacon makes anything better as far as I'm concerned!  And, I love that it now comes precooked and all you have to do is zap it in the microwave a few seconds and dig in.  Well, the first dish that comes to mind, is a chicken dish (I can't recall the name right now).  It's chicken breasts wrapped in strips of bacon and then lots of creamy goodness poured over them and baked.  It's amazing!

7.  Share a favorite holiday memory.
Most of you know that I have a brother that is 12 1/2 years younger than me.  When he was born I just knew that my Mom had had him for me.  I was definitely his second Momma.  When he was about 2 years (I was 14) old he started sleeping with me every Christmas Eve and it was the sweetest time.  He was beside himself with excitement awaiting Santa and it was my job to make sure I kept him in bed while Santa did his magic under the Christmas tree. It is indeed a favorite holiday memory!

8.  Insert your own random thought here. 

 Do you see this?  Yep, that's our famed Labs, Rosco and Rhett laying in our foyer last night.  And, you do know that I'm of the opinion that inside a house is NO place for large dogs. They belong outside!!  Well, last night they kept looking in the side windows by the front door, practically begging to come in.  Then Hubby starts whinning to me about how they needed to come in for a little while and lay on their pillow beds.  It just so happens that Hubby had some brand new pillow beds in his shop that he had not yet placed in their ultra nice kennel.  So, I reluctantly agreed that they could come in and lay on those nice clean, never been used, pillow beds for a little while.  They only had to walk about 8-10 steps inside the front door to get to the beds and that's what they did and in no time, they were fast asleep and snoring.  Mercy me! Hubby was in hog heaven and  is just sure that they are their happiest when they are near him. What can I say???

Thanks Joyce for another great week of HP questions! These were some of my favorite.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Miscellany Monday

Well, Thanksgiving has come and gone and likely our thoughts have turned to Christmas.  Including today, we only have 5 Mondays left until Christmas.  It truly seems like just a couple of months ago that we were celebrating last years Christmas.  But, let me move along and share my miscellaneous thoughts while time marches on ..........

 Pint sized..........
Are these not the cutest???  I mean, pint sized Uggs for a pint sized little Princess.(DIL told me these were the Sears brand of Uggs).  When she came strutting out in these I just about flipped.

Sister-in-law fun.......
My sister-in-law from Georgia was here for Thanksgiving and we got up Thanksgiving morning and decided to have a little fun with candy making.  We made a triple batch of Pralines because one person can definitely not handle a triple batch.  It takes a lot of hands working quickly to get them dropped out before the mixture gets tacky.  We made quite a team and had a lot of fun making those "drippy sweet thangs." And, you can tell from the pictures that we were serious about what we were doing. ~laugh~

The Carver.........
Hubby was the official turkey and ham carver for our Thanksgiving.  And, might I add, he does it right.  When he finishes, there is only beautiful slices of meat without anything strange or undesired. (you know, all meat can have stuff that you do NOT want in your mouth)  All we had to do was enjoy it bite by bite. 

We used both the kitchen table and the dining table for our Thanksgiving meal.  I added fresh flowers to my seasonal tablescape in the dining room and used fresh flowers in a teapot to match my Portmeirion on the kitchen table.  I thought for a novice that they both turned out really well and gave the tables a nice festive look for the occasion.

So thankful.........

What a blessing to have my Dad and Step-Mom  join us for Thanksgiving.  Never would I have dreamed the recovery that has taken place in my Dad's body since this time last year.  He was pretty much bed ridden at this time last year and we had little hope of him recovering.

It was truly the icing on the cake to have Dad offer up our prayer of Thanksgiving before our meal.  Yes, God is so good and we stand amazed

As we begin the Christmas season may you enjoy the time and not allow yourself to get your "tinsel in a tangle." 

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Hodgepodge - Thanksgiving Style

First, I have no business sitting at this computer blogging, but I would not want to disappoint any of my readers by being a "no show" this Thanksgiving Eve.~big smile~  I've heard that many of you enjoy your first cup of coffee while checking out my blog.  Awe, that does warm my heart, so you'd better realize how lucky you are that I took time to do this post today.  I should be in the kitchen cooking, but, first things first. ~laugh~ And, I figure if Joyce can take the time to make up the questions, then surely I can take the time to answer them.  Thanks Joyce!

Secondly, I am so, so jealous of Joyce and Kim and the fact that they got to meet Ree Drummond.  My daughter and I want to meet her so badly.  Bridget and her family lived not very far from the Drummond Ranch when they lived in Oklahoma and we thought it would be fun to just "happen by" sometime.  But, we're hoping that sometime she'll just invite us to come and spend the weekend. You know, life is made of dreams.  And, if you have not read her life story, "From High Heels to Tractor Wheels" then you need to.  It is such a fun read and quite an amazing story.

Thirdly, I must hush with all this and get on to the questions for the day so I can hurry back to the kitchen...............

   1. Turkey-love it or leave it?  White meat or dark?  What's your favorite thing to make using leftover turkey?
I'd have to say that I love it and it has to be white meat. Ugh, on dark meat!  And, I've never done anything special with leftover turkey outside of make sandwiches.
2. Gotta burn off all those carbs the day after a holiday feast so which would you rather do-run a 10K or climb a mountain?

Well, I just as soon do neither of those, but I will jump on my treadmill and do a couple of miles and call it "good."  I try to really use portion control so that I don't pack on a bunch of extra pounds because I don't want to have to get rid of it. ~grin~

3.  Do you feel like social networking has made your relationships better or worse?  Explain.

Oh, better for sure.  There are so, so many people that I've had the privilege of reconnecting with through Facebook.  I likely would have never, ever reconnected with many of them any other way.  It has been more fun than a barrel of monkeys!

  4. How do you find and express gratitude for the hard things in your life?
I'd have to say that often it takes a little time for me to be grateful for the hard things. Initially it's often earth shattering and just insurmountable.  But, then I see God's hand at work in any and everything and while I may not be grateful for the hard things, I'm grateful for once again being reminded that HE is sovereign and  nothing comes into my life that doesn't first pass through His hands.  

  5.  In the US, the day after Thanksgiving has been dubbed 'Black Friday'.  Is most of your holiday shopping done live and in person, or is it done more through the magic of the Internet? How do you feel about stores opening at midnight Thanksgiving night? Will you be out amongst the masses on Friday?
I would say that at least 75% of my shopping is done online and I have pretty much all of it done for this year.  I do not have to touch and feel the items I buy and to me, there's nothing like the magic of internet shopping.  I am totally against the stores opening at midnight and this year, most of them are opening earlier in the evening.  I feel so sorry for the employees that cannot just sit back and relax with their families to their hearts content, and NO I will not be amongst the masses on Friday.

  6.  Speaking of the color black-which black item in your wardrobe would you say is your favorite?
Oh, I have several black items that I love, but the first one to come to my mind is a black turtleneck.  I ordered it from Soft Surroundings last year and it has  ruching on the neck, the sleeves and the side seams.  It is just very smart looking and my very favorite turtleneck.

  7.  What do you appreciate about your life today?
That our family is healthy and all are gainfully employed and God has been "more than good" to me and mine. I hope I never take any of these things for granted because they can be ever so swiftly taken away.

  8.  Insert your own random thought here.

I will likely be "out of sight" in the blogging world until the first of next week.  It's time for family fun and making memories.  May you and yours enjoy the time as well, and do know how much I appreciate your sharing in my life through my blog.  Blessings!! 

Monday, November 19, 2012

Miscellany Monday - Thanksgiving Style

It's Thanksgiving week and I am sure everyone is busily putting the last minute touches on their plans for Thanksgiving. But, for now, let's be random with Carissa as we begin this week of Thanksgiving.

Sugary goodness.........

 Here in Louisiana, pralines (and there's a couple of different ways to pronounce them) are considered a staple during the holiday season.  I have never been a fan of them because they are just too sweet for me.  And, I had never made them until this past weekend.  I ran across what appeared to be the easiest recipe for them on Pinterest and I HAD to give it a try. I felt like I could not be a true Southern Belle if I did not know how to make pralines. ~giggle~  So, they were every bit as easy as the recipe indicated and Hubby assured me that they were absolutely delicious.  Yea, for me!!  If you are interested in the recipe, click on the recipe tab at the top of my blog and it will be the first one, Georgia Pralines.  I'm sure you will agree, they are nothing more than sugary goodness!

A wonderful gift idea............

 If you have never heard of or checked out Paper Coterie, then you need to run right over.  It is the coolest website with the coolest products.  One of the products that I have fallen in love with is the Memory Keepers.  They come in two sizes and they are boxes to keep clippings, pictures, programs, etc. in and you can personalize them with pictures and text.  They come in all kinds of designs and if you Google promotion code for Paper Coterie, you will likely get at least 25% off of your order.  I got both of my Grans one for their birthdays this year and their Moms were thrilled too death.  They have so many cool products and since it's Christmas shopping time, I thought you would enjoy knowing about this fun website.  You're welcome!

Man's best friend.........
We went out yesterday afternoon and "tried" to get some decent pictures of Hubby and his dogs.  I say his because I truly have very little to do with them.  But, they are really good dogs (as dogs go) and they are always so glad to see me when I drive up and for that, I'm grateful. ~laugh~  But, the one who truly cares for them, feeds them, keeps their vet visits up to date, is Hubby.  In case you have never met them before, this is Rhett (yellow) and Rosco (brown).  Dogs truly are man's best friend, they'll love regardless! ~smile~ 

June 15, 2013
 Okay, I am so excited!  I shared with you a couple of week's ago about my nieces engagement and now I'm pleased to tell you that the date has been set.  Yep, next June 15th, me and Hubby will be in DesMoines, Iowa for the big day.  I am a bit partial I know, but they are the finest young couple and I just know the Lord has great and mighty things in store for them.  And, are they not the cutest? And, I  love that their names even go together - Ashley and Aaron - has such a cute "ring" to it. ~wink~ And, hey, one day they may have a little boy and girl named Andrew and Allison. ~big wink~

May you have a blessed week.....


Friday, November 16, 2012

Friday's Letters

Yipee! It's Friday and I get to write some letters.  Thanks Ashley for being our lovely host for Friday letter writing. 


Dear Family.......I am  looking forward to our time together this coming week as we celebrate Thanksgiving.  Bridget, I am so sorry that you cannot be here with us, but we look forward to seeing you and your guys 4 weeks from today.  Living 13 hours away does present challenges. ~boo~

Dear Mrs. Petraeus..... I am so sorry for all the public humiliation that you have had to endure in recent days.  While your husband really messed up, I don't think it is necessary for the media to fill us in on the details of his misbehavior.  I truly hope that the two of you can survive this and healing can occur and the media will leave you alone.

Dear Subway.......I love your flat bread sandwiches, in fact, I love just about all of your sandwiches.  And, I love that I get to watch you make them.  I have a feeling if I were to watch how food is prepared at some of the other places I frequent, I likely would not eat it.  Ugh! not a pleasant thought.

Dear Retailers.......Do you really have to begin your Black Friday sales on Thanksgiving evening?  I think it is terrible that your employees cannot have off all day on Thanksgiving.  I know that the almighty $$$ rules your decisions but I think starting your sales at midnight was soon enough and even that is unnecessary to me.  Oh, well, what do I know?

Dear Pumpkin Bread..........I love the aroma that you left in the house after I baked you yesterday afternoon.  I'm sure hoping that you taste as good as you smell. ~yummy~

Dear took your pants off at your benefit concert for the Sandy victims.  I truly thought I was hearing incorrectly but no, you really did.  Do you have any shame????  I think not!

Dear have been absolutely gorgeous this past week and I'm ordering more of the same for the coming week.  Ya hear? Thanksgiving will be all the better with gorgeous weather.

Dear Readers..........think on this


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Wednesday Hodgepodge

Well, Joyce was really nice to host us today. I'm sure there is still lots for her to catch up on after Sandy's hit on their area.  It is just so sad to see the folks there and the extreme loss they have endured and continue to endure. We're glad you are back Joyce and that Sandy's wrath was not too devastating to you.

1.  What rule of life should never be broken?
Be honest and always tell the truth. Oh, how much better off our world would be if every one did this.

2.  What's your favorite family recipe? 

Well, this isn't exactly a recipe, but it one of our family favorites, Grilled Pork Tenders.  And, notice I say one, we have many.  And, notice I said "tenders" not tenderloins (we think tenderloins are too strong).  It is not anything all that special that I do, just sprinkle a little seasoning salt on it and then grill it.  But, it is so, so good and melts in your mouth. It is one of my most requested main dishes. 

3.  Is the media manipulative?

Oh, my goodness, YES! And, we've never seen it more than  throughout this past election.  Ugh! sickening!  The media is often deemed credible but can be knowingly pushing a political agenda or propaganda and they usually are.   

4. Hubs and I saw
Skyfall last weekend...are you a fan of the Bond films? If so, who's your favorite Bond?Well, guess this should be embarrassing but I have never seen a Bond movie.  I know, I know, unbelievable and unAmerican, but it is what it is and I'm just being honest! ~smile~

5. What is one thing you hope people never say about you?That I was selfish and self-centered.  I know some folks like this, they think life is all about them, and they are missing out on so much. Need I say more?

6.  What's a nearby tourist attraction you'd like to see, but haven't gotten around to visiting? 

Natchitoches, Louisiana has the Festival of Lights each Christmas season and folks come from all over to attend.  The opening ceremony will be this Saturday evening at 6:30.  It is a mere 2 1/2 hour drive from us but we have never been.  I'm thinking that we need to do something about that.  The festival will run through Jan. 6th. 

7.  Where's your favorite tree?

Our flagship university, Louisiana State, has the most gorgeous campus filled with Live Oak trees.  Our daughter graduated from LSU and I always enjoyed being on the campus  so I could enjoy the beauty of the Live Oaks.  Another place that the Live Oaks can be found is on many of the historic plantations in South Louisiana. 

8.  Insert your own random thought here. 

 I'm sure that you all have been hearing all the "chatter" about the questionable vote tallies concerning the Presidential election.  Do ya think it is as reported?  I think not!  Do ya think anything will ever come of it?  I think not again!  Do you call it voter fraud?  I think so!!!!  And, I thought this quote pretty much sums it up.......

Monday, November 12, 2012

Miscellany Monday

It is just 10 days until Thanksgiving.  Oh, my, how did that happen! I'm not sure if it's an "age thing" or if time is really going by that quickly.  Let me hurry and get my miscellaneous thoughts down before it's Tuesday.............

A first.........

 Our birthday group went to a cute little restaurant for lunch last week on our outing.  Of course, we all had to go to the bathroom.  This is what was on the doors of the women's and men's bathrooms there.  We had never seen such but all thought it stated it pretty plain.  How funny!

This apron was displayed in a shop I went in last week.  It stopped me right in my tracks and I had to stand right there and laugh out loud.  I mean, what a great gag gift for some gal.  Surely that would be the only reason this would be given.  Right? Where do people come up with these ideas?  And, might I add, it was NOT cheap! 

It's that time..........

 I would bet that many of you have or are getting ready to pick out your Christmas card.  And, if you do like I do and use photos on your card, then it can be quite the challenge.  In browsing through ideas, I came across the one above.  How cute is that?  Hubby and I had our pics taken yesterday afternoon for our card and I can assure you that I am not sitting on his shoulders. ~laugh~  My daughter and DIL are always on top of getting some cute photos of the Grans, so I think mine is close to being designed.  I am one of those that gets a lot of enjoyment out of creating our Christmas card and mailing it.  And, I enjoy receiving them as well.

Ah, pure goodness.......

My friends, you are looking at what has been one of the most important foods on our Thanksgiving menu for years and years. Here in the deep south there is nothing like Sweet Potato Casserole.  And, I might add, that the buttery, pecan and brown sugar topping makes you happy, happy, happy.  If you are looking for the BEST recipe, you can click here. One of the good things, besides the deliciousness ( I don't think that's a word, but I just made it one) is that it can be frozen ahead of time and the topping added just before baking.  I'm all into advance preparation.

And, remember to........

Friday, November 9, 2012

Friday's Letters

Linking up with Ashley for some letter writing today......

Dear Thanksgiving........I am so sorry that you are somehow squashed between Halloween and Christmas and are often almost completely ignored.  What a shame!  There may be a whole lot of tough stuff in everyone's lives, but there's still so, so much to be thankful for and you deserve to be celebrated to the fullest extent.

Dear Clancy and Hanna are growing up so fast and while I loved rocking you when you were babies, you are so, so much fun right now.  Your learning like wildfire and I enjoy our conversations and the cutest things come out of your mouth!  You may likely never fully know just how much your CiCi loves you.  I pray that you when you are grown you will have the fondest memories of me. ~smile~

Dear Thanksgiving Meal.........I will be cooking for 11 members of our family here at our home.  I want you to turn out really well for me and be absolutely delicious.  I'm going to start my preparations this weekend so that I will be "one step ahead" of the game.  Thanks in advance for cooperating with me.

Dear President Obama.......I am not happy about the fact that you were elected to serve another 4 years.  But, let me assure you that I am praying for you and that you will do your best to turn our country around economically and morally and work to unify us.  It is a sad state of affairs presently and you are the "man in charge." I am going to try hard to remain hopeful.

Dear Christmas List........I have made a huge dent in you and am about to get started with the wrapping and bagging.  I know many folks enjoy the rush of holiday shopping but I enjoy the peace and tranquility of knowing it is done in advance. ~grin~

Dear Daddy......I cannot believe that you are alive to celebrate your 83rd birthday today.  You are truly a living miracle and I pray you have a wonderful day and feel extra good.  I love you and am thankful for God's provisions over you this past year and a half.


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

What I'm Loving Wednesday

I'm linking up with "What I'm Loving Wednesday" with Jamie over at This Kind of Love.

Here's what I'm loving..........

I'm loving the gift of friendship.  Fifteen years ago this group of gals formed what we called "the birthday group."  We go on 3 outings a year and celebrate each other's birthdays.  One of those such days was day before yesterday.  We go on day trips to see sites, shop and enjoy a good meal.  A few years back we decided that a good name for us would be "The Formidible Women."  ~giggle ~ It's a special time when we can all be together and forget the cares of the world and just enjoy being together.  

I'm loving that our local Garden Club (that I'm a member of) is having a huge garage sale this Saturday. It gave me a wonderful opportunity to go through my house and get rid of stuff!  How are earth do we accumulate so much?  I just don't get it, but at this stage of my life, I'm all about lessening my load of stuff.

Photo taken in November 2010

 I'm loving that my Hubby has enjoyed 55+ years of hunting.  I don't get the whole hunting deal, I mean you have to get up early, get very cold and stay very quiet.  There's nothing about any of that that appeals to me. ~laugh~  But, something about it has sure brought a lot of enjoyment into my husbands life for a very long time.  And, he tells me that there's just nothing like being "up close and personal" with nature.


I'm loving  that this month causes me to pause and reflect, in a special way, all the things I have to be thankful for.  And, I'm always reminded that the things I'm most grateful for is not things, but relationships..........with my Lord and Savior, my precious family and my friends.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Miscellany Monday

Can it really be the first Monday in November?  I mean, where has this year gone?  And, while I did love having the sun peeking it's head out an hour earlier yesterday and today, I do not like the darkness at 5:30 PM.  It makes me think that it's time for bed by 7:00.  Oh, well, I'll adjust, just takes me a week or so.  Meanwhile, let me get random with sweet Carissa this morning.


Little girls and Chapstick..........

Oh, my goodness! My little Princess does love her Chapstick.  It is just amazing what delight a tube of that greasy stuff brings to her. I say it's cheap entertainment and since she is old enough to know not eat it, then just enjoy it and CiCi will give her all she wants.

Yummy junk food........

 Saturday was the day of our local craft festival.  My daughter in law and I headed out and were some of the first ones there.  It was a small affair but we managed to find a few items.  And,  one of the best things there were these "Twisted Potatoes on a Stick."  Goodness gracious, not sure how they are created but can I just say that they are so crispy and good.  Half of the fun of a craft fair is the "not so good for you" snacks. 

It's love, it's love..........
This past Saturday evening in Chicago, my precious niece became engaged.  And, might I add, Aaron, her now fiancee, did it right!  Can you tell from these photos what an enchanting evening it was. Oh, it makes my heart so happy to see young couples do things right and I pray God's richest blessings over them in the days ahead as they work out all the details of the wedding.  I am sooooo excited for them!
It's your duty my friends..........

It will seem very strange tomorrow to not be voting but I voted absentee (wish I could go and vote again).  I did not want to take any chance at all that I might be unable to vote on election day.  Even if I die between now and tomorrow, my vote has been cast! ~smile~  So, whatever you have to do, get to the polls tomorrow and VOTE!  The future of our country has never been more at stake!