Wednesday, March 31, 2010

"Morning Glory" for You

"Morning Glory Muffins" of our family's favorites. Just in case you want to make a little something sweet for your family this special Easter weekend.

They are quick to assemble and bake, and so very moist and delicious.
They freeze well.

They are full of good, healthy ingredients...
...shredded carrots
...shredded Granny Smith(or your choice) apples
...chopped walnuts
...and a bit of coconut
(recipe below, if desired)

Recipe from Country Inn's Cookbook. One that I have been using for many years.

A few of my favorite Spring flowers.
Thank you for stopping by to visit.
May your day be touched in some way with a bit of morning glory, or some pretty Spring flowers.

Monday, March 29, 2010

It is a raining, overcast and cool this Monday morning. This kind of morning makes starting out my week, a bit more difficult. Maybe it is because I am now 56 years old...maybe that is why I am feeling a bit sluggish today. Is this what 56 feels like? They keep sending me the AARP cards in the mail. I'm not sure I like that. Do you...all of you out there who are now in your 50s?
If my mother was reading this post right now, she would be saying, "think what all the years you have to be thankful for, instead of thinking how old you now are." I know she is right...but I am feeling a bit old today.
I am grateful though for the creatively done, homemade card that I received from one of my friends. She makes so many pretty cards. She knows I like glitter...just little touches of glitter.

Our youngest daughter got a diamond from this fine young man. After a four year, long distance relationship, he asked her to marry him. We congratulate both of them and look forward to their June 2011 wedding.

I really like the soft pink rose that sits by my computer and shares it lovely fragrance. It is my favorite flower, and it makes me smile just having it on my desk.

I couldn't believe these two little ones were actually holding hands as they sat on my kitchen table on Saturday morning. How cute is that???

Outside my bathroom window, is this gorgeous tree. I took this picture on Saturday afternoon. Do any of you expert gardening friends of mine, know what this tree is? The blue skies and the fragrant blossoms created joy for me this weekend. I know life is not all clear blue skies and sunshine. I know we need the rain to have everything grow. I know time keeps moving and years keep adding up. I know...I know...
I am thankful today...really I am. I am thankful for any of you who take the time to visit this simple, ordinary blog. You...are a blessing to me in rainy and sunny days.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

"Even if you live a long time, don't take a single day for granted.
Take delight in each light-filled hour."
Ecc. 11:8
Lately I am being reminded of what a gift each day is. Another one of my highschool classmates has passed away unexpectantly. Somehow, it seems we can so easily get caught up in the circumstances of our lives, that we forget that each and every day is God's gift to us to take delight in, no matter how difficult the details of that day may is a gift.
~photo from Country Living Magazine

Friday, March 26, 2010

What happened to the lady who blogged on a regular basis on this blog?
Well...she just got home from a few days spent in south Florida.

My husband and I visited with my mother. We enjoyed the warm sunshine and time at the beach.

I was fortunate to have a few days to spend with my little brother and his wife(my dear SIL) who were also visiting in the same place. We were thrilled to help him celebrate his 50th birthday.
How did those years pass by so quickly? One feels old when one's little brother turns 50.

I got to spend time with one of my uncles and his family, which is always a fun time.
He and his family live in the warm south, making time together, a rare event.

My mother and my cousin's daughters. What sweet and talented girls they are. It was a special time we all had together...laughing, talking and eating.
Because my last two weeks were so full, I feel like I have not blogged or visiting all the wonderful blogs that I enjoy, for such a long time. I do look forward to getting back into the loop and catching up on all that I missed.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Quietly, without fanfare the signs of Spring are everywhere. It just amazes me that the tiny shoots of growth know that it is Spring and that it is time for them to break through the soil. Doesn't it amaze you?

Baseball and Springtime go together, right? What fun they had...the older guys teaching the younger ones. I was impressed with the patience, care and enthusiasm that was exibited in this outdoor game. Surely these little ones have some new heros in their lives.

The first Spring of the twin's lives. These little guys were given endless attention.

Their mothers trained them well. After dinner, they did the dishes...without being asked. What a gift that was for me. Thanks guys!

A special visit to the retirement home to see their Grandma. Her recent heart surgery has left her feeling weak and tired, but her warm smile and spunky attitude blessed us all.

Fresh strawberry shortcake was a big hit, even with this little guy and his huge bowl.

Thanks for the privilege of sharing just a few of our last week's memories.

I enjoy hearing about your happenings in blogland, so keep sharing.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

After a very busy week ...
Many pots of coffee...
Lots of meals around the table...

Numerous trips to the airports...
Fun welcomes and sad goodbyes...
Hesitantly, I share a few of the happenings during this week of our family, and some of their friends and the visit to our home.
I say hesitantly because it is just an ordinary family event, in the middle of a March week.
A trip to New York City...the first time ever for some of them...four free tickets were given to them for the Regis and Kelly show.

They enjoyed their visit, stating the warm personalities of both Regis and Kelly, to all of their guests was a pleasant surprise in the somewhat impersonal world of showbiz.

Here is our crew in their rare one day trip together. Back home, some of the little ones were enjoying a play day with mamaw and some with their great aunt.
I will share a few more pictures and highlights with you in this coming week. For now, it is catch up time in my home.
I did miss visiting with my blogging friends. I did think of you many times.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

I am going to be taking a break for a few days. I have family and friends coming to stay in our home. I am looking forward to our home being filled with people again.
I look forward to returning to blogland shortly, and will sincerely miss you! Sometimes it surprises me to realize how much I enjoy this aspect of my life. You are all a real blessing to me.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Humbly, I share this with you.

I had a few minutes in the late afternoon where I quickly washed my hair, dried it, and whipped it up in these velcro rollers. This process takes only a few minutes for me to do. I felt her little pressence beside me during this entire process. As soon as I finished, she said, "it's my turn."
So, we washed her hair, dried it, and stuck the velcro curlers in it.
Velcro rollers, all different sizes, from the dollar store or from Walmart, inexpensive, need no clips to fasten, adds body, works best with a small dab of gel on hair before rolling, part of my daily

Mission completed. Dinner needs to be made.
Yes... "grandmas truly are just antique little girls".
Happy day to you!
"The best portions of a good life are the little, nameless, unremembered acts of kindness and love we do for others."
~William Wordsworth

Thursday, March 11, 2010

The Spring touches that are popping up everywhere are just so invigorating. Even if this beautiful sunny weather is temporary, it is still like a breath of fresh air after the long winter season.
This old urn was sitting on my friend's kitchen island, filled with violets and sitting on a starched white linen cloth. I thought I'd share it with you.

Last night's dinner with my husband's family. I am sharing it to show how I used a dollar store twin sheet as my tablecloth. I do own some nice white tablecloths, but decided I wanted a light tan one to coodinate with my napkins.
I always use white dinner plates. It allows me to set my table with different color combinations.

Of course, candlelight is always present at my dinners, no matter how casual the event. This was a special evening that we all had together. My brother-in-law was in from Colorado for a brief visit. My mother-in-law is having surgery this morning, so our time to sit and visit was a rare privilege.

I am a stickler for items that I find on clearance. A few years ago, a store near my home was closing. Everything was 75% off. I found a box of two glass lanterns. I didn't need them but knew I really liked them. I put water in each one and added a faux soft pink carnation, then added the tea light and the glass shade. I thought they went so well with the soft pink carnation on the napkins. I was glad I had purchased them when I did. I added the delicate looking butterfly sticker to each shade. Fun and simple methods to dress up my kitchen table. I share these ONLY because I enjoy seeing each of your tablescapes on the blogs and thought you might like seeing mine. I am continually amazed at the level of creativity and beauty that I find there.

This tiny arrangement sits on the table by the window, beside my desk. Truly, like it says, we do "welcome Spring."

These adorable flower salt and pepper shakers, sitting on my kitchen island...

...arrived unexpectantly, in the middle of an ordinary day last week, with the flower bud vase and the blue flower candle with lid. What a fun surprise it was to receive this gift. A dear friend, who just happens to be a wonderful Southern lady, sent it to me. I smile everytime I see them with their bright colored little faces sitting on my island.
Love the concept of special little reminders in life, whether small gifts, cards, or phone calls that say, "hi, I am thinking of you". Adds joy to life! Thanks dear friend for this sweet reminder.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Dinner here for my husband's family. Time is limited.
Thought I would share my quick, easy and so delicious potato recipe.
Purchase two bags of "Simply Potatoes" shredded. Smile if they are on sale like these were.
Turn over and use the recipe for "Cheesy Hash Browns"
Takes only 10 minutes or less to assemble and fill 9 x 13 inch casserole dish.
Ready now to put in the refrigerator and bake right before dinner tomorrow evening.

My faithful standby potatoes...whether the mashed, the shredded, sliced or the homefries. When time is at a premium these work for me.

The recipe calls for coarsly crushed cornflakes and they add so much to the taste. I don't have them on hand, and I am never left down by the Panko bread crumbs that I use as a topping, so that is what I will use this time. They are a real crunch to this casserole.
Right before placing in the oven I will mix these with melted butter and cover the casserole.

The chuck roasts that I purchased are already in the crockpot for the day. I am cooking them a day ahead. When they are fork tender and come out of the crockpot, I remove all fat, cut into serving size pieces, cover with the liquid from the crockpot and place in a large baking dish. I will place the casserole dish of meat in a warm oven for an hour before serving.
This "Allegro" is my very favorite marinade for beef. I always use it when cooking beef.
It is a great flavorizer and tenderizer.

Right before this chuck roast is ready to serve, I will add the oven baked onion rings to the top of the roast:) at my husband's request.
Even though the dinner is tomorrow evening, I do not like last minute preparations, so I usually try to do everything ahead of time.
Now, all I must do is to find my pearls to complete my outfit...

...oh dear, look who borrowed them from me. She looks much cuter in them anyway.

Monday, March 8, 2010

During the last few days while the sun was shining and one could tell with certainty that Spring was approaching, I had a few minutes of reflection in my days. It happened to me as I was sitting and having coffee while gazing out of the one of three big windows that are in my kitchen eating area. You see, these windows were quietly screaming to be cleaned after the harsh winter that they have just gone through. This time of reflection and the dirty windows, led me to thinking back over the Springtimes of my life.
"Springtime" as a child and a young teen meant...Spring house cleaning. Now some of you, perhaps many of you may ask, "what is that and what does it involve?"
Spring house cleaning for our family and many of the families in our community and county, meant that you stripped each room of your house to the bare bones, and scrubbed everything! By everything, I mean...
...putting all the furniture into the middle of the room and scrubbing behind it all.
...removing all of the cushions from the sofas and chairs and vaccuming them thoroughly.
...removing all of the curtains from the windows, washing, and ironing them. Washing every window and shining them until not one spot was to be found. My mother was quite the inspector! If I remember correctly she would use my dad's old undershirts and vinegar mixed with water, to clean the windows...inside and out. Then those spotlessly cleaned and ever so perfectly starched curtains would be hung back on the rods.
...every light fixture would be cleaned. Every rug would be washed. On a sidenote to this...when she was a teenager in her home, her dad would carry out all of their rugs, hang them over the wash lines and beat them with a broom. They did not have vaccum cleaners so this was one of their Spring routines. our kitchen, we would remove everything from all the cupboards, wipe out every cupboard with hot water and soap, make sure everything was clean to put back in the cupboards and organize it all.
...this was done in every room of our home...every Spring, without exception.

I grew up with a mother who to this day, knows what CLEAN is, and that is due to her mother who also knew what the word CLEAN meant. And me...well, after years of helping my mother, and summers spent helping my grandma clean her home, I quess I know that clean concept too, although I must admit Spring housecleaning is now only a part of my past.
Yes, it is the gloriously beautiful time of the year when all nature is coming alive. And, yes I have been reminded that my windows do need to be cleaned. world has changed, and the concept of Spring housecleaning does not create the feeling of dread that it used to in my younger days, because it is no longer a part of my days.
My mother did tell me that this cleaning concept originated with the fact that the homes were all heated each winter, with coal stoves. The stoves created a black type dirt over the entire home, thus creating the crucial need for the annual Spring housecleaning.
Was this a part of your childhoods? Or, was it only in our part of the country?

This beautiful African violet does not have anything to do with Spring housecleaning, but I thought I 'd share this photo with you to let you in on another small nugget of info about me. I cannot grow these plants!!!
A dear lady at our church gave this lovely, treasured violet to me. She said it has become her good friend and she wants me to have it. I shuddered at that thought, but graciously accepted her kind offer. She included very specific instructions on it's daily care.
In a few short weeks, it was quite obvious that she had made a huge mistake...the African violet was near death. She requested that I give it back to her and that she would revive it. So that is what I did. When she got it back to vibrant health again, she insisted that I try again. Second time did not work either for me. All that to say...I was not created to raise African violets, no matter how much instruction I may receive.
It is Monday morning and I have so much work waiting to be done. I am so thankful for the sun that is shining, the warmer tempetures and for each one of you who takes the time to stop by and visit this blog. Whether you do Spring housecleaning every year or not...whether you raise shelves of thriving African violets or not...I appreciate you and your visits more than you could know.
Wishing you a profittable and rewarding day!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

"There's a wonder of sunset and evening
The wonder of sunrise I see
But the wonder of wonders that thrills my soul
Is the wonder that God loves me."
~George Beverly Shea
(sunsets captured by my uncle)

Thursday, March 4, 2010

"These Are A Few of My Favorite Things...

Another day is coming to a close and with that another post is being posted from this blogger. Rarely do I share facts about me. I tend to be more private than transparent. But, tonight I thought I would share a few trivial facts about me, be it ever so trivial.
~I like candlelight, anywhere and anytime. Most early morning and evenings you will find candles burning in my home.

~I like bouquets of flowers. From the garden, from the grocery store or from the florist. I have seen my friends create some of the most beautiful bouquets from their gardens. I should post the tours I've had of my friend's flower gardens.

~Violets. I remember as a little girl collecting them each Summer and putting them in vases. Now whenever I see these tiny purple flowers I think of a good friend whose favorite flowers are violets. Don't you love it when something reminds you of a good friend?

~I cherish moments of quiet, relaxation, and just being together with my husband.

~good cups of hot's what gets me up in the morning and what adds pleasure to my life when I get to sit and drink it, while sharing fun times with a good friend.

~hearing news from my wonderful daughter and son-in-law that I am going to be grandma again...their first child. How exciting!!!

~when I think that strawberry season is right around the corner. I absolutely love the fresh, sweet, big red strawberries that our dear neighbors on the farm, grow.

~pink roses are a very favorite flower of mine, especially if they are the old fashion roses. They remind me of my grandmas and that is a special memory.

~games of Scrabble with my mother, and at times with my mother-in-law. This picture reminded me of the many games of Scrabble that my Mother and I played together over the years. And, often she would serve us her favorite English muffins while we played. Both ladies are very accomplished Scrabble players. I've learned so much from them. One of the games I enjoy the most.

~tea cups...beautiful china tea cups. My mother collected them for years, and whenever I see them, I think of her. I like how they dressed this cup and saucer up with a few fresh daisies.

~when I am given an armful of flowers or when I can give them to someone I love, brings me great joy. If I could I would give this bouquet to my dear friend and her family who unexpectantly lost their father and grandfather last evening. My heart goes out to them at this painful time when life suddenly changes with one phone call. I remember...

~taking containers of any and every sort and using them creatively. This photo reminds me of the jelly jars that I wrapped with wire around last summmer, and put in votive candles to hang on my screened in porch.
I collect containers and am always looking for new uses for them.

~and a precious little girl who now stands beside me and helps me cook dinner. Last evening she was whipping the eggs for me. Notice she has my bracelet on...that brings me a smile every time.
These are just a few of my favorite things. Nothing profound...just me.
Most of these pictures were from past issues of Country Living British Edition Magazine, that were filed in my basket. Thanks to their great photographers I could share them with you.


Related Posts with Thumbnails