Wednesday, July 31, 2013

On a side note

Summer days and me are besties. Especially when I am home. Alone. Free. 
So I made good use of "our" one day together. 

It went something like this:

Did all the laundry. 

Worked on some sewing projects.

NO cooking meals at all. 

Met my husband and his friends at the country corner grocery/slash/cafe at 1:30pm.

Ordered this grilled chicken salad. It was huge. It was delicious. I put half of it aside in a doggie bag for dinner. 

Now my bestie (aka summer day) is gone. I am back at work for who knows how many days in a row. 

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Party Time

One year old party for Cohen. With the cake, the presents, and people.    


Thursday, July 25, 2013

When surfing, one must watch for sharks

My assignment:  Bring a watermelon food/tray to my little's birthday party. The party theme is surfing/beach/water. 

I can't just do a plain watermelon. I have to give myself a challenge and do something over the top. 

After researching (surfing) online watching for watermelon centerpieces (sharks), I choose this:


Of course, mine most likely will not look exactly like this. But here goes. 

1) do a trial run on Wednesday before the party. 
2) have husband in on the works
3) we can eat it no matter how it turns out

Not bad. It's what I envisioned. Notice the inside of the mouth almost resembles a real life mouth interior. 

There are a few things I will do different on the final sculpture on Saturday.
  • replace green grape eyes with blueberry eyes. (I only had grapes today)
  • cut the top of the mouth a little more towards the end of the watermelon
  • learn how to make the fin on the shark's back correctly
  • add the gummi fish around, and a blue plate or something blue to look like the water
  • hopefully get a better watermelon for Saturday's project. This watermelon was not tasty, nor very red, nor had a pretty rind
Notice the gills carved on the side.

Here's how:

Cut 1/3 bottom off watermelon at a slant. Save smaller bottom piece to work with later. 

Draw open mouth and teeth on closed end of larger part of cut watermelon with marker. Cut mouth and carve teeth out. Having a small sharp carving knife made it really easy. Kind of like carving a pumpkin.

Clean and scrape out only some of the watermelon out in the mouth area so it looks like a real mouth with throat and inside jaws and things. But cut all the red away from the inside of the teeth line.

Slice only the green color rind off the teeth to show the white rind. Round out 2 holes for the eyes and place a blueberry in each one. Carve slits in the side for the gills and carve a place on back to put a fin.

Using bottom smaller cut piece as a bowl, scoopewatermelon balls and put them back in the "bowl" for the guests to eat after you drain the "bowl" of juice and seeds.

When I make the final sculpture for the party, I will place  in a blue plate like it showed and buy candy gummi fish to put around plate and in sharks mouth along with some watermelon scooped balls. But blue hard jelled jello would look great  to sit the shark on. I'll think on that and see if I can make that happen.

                                       The Original                          Mine

I am pleased with it. I think the few tweaks I need to make will make it a little better.  We will eat this one and make another one Saturday morning

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Happy Happy Birthday

I'm linking with Oh What A Happy Day Party to celebrate the happy part of my day.

So happy to celebrate this little one's birthday today. Cohen turns 1 year old today.

Today I am featuring a guest blogger.
Pegi at Sharing Daily Steps has just returned from a mission trip in South LA. 

She is blogging everyday about her group's trip, starting from day one and taking us thru each day. Her first post about it was on Monday, so you'll have a few to read to catch up. 

Read her blog here and catch up with her as she tells about her trip all this week.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Book Review

This is not your average book review post. I did just buy the book, again. I had a copy of it many years ago. 

It's a review of a children's book. 

My favorite book of all times when I was a child was The Three Billy Goats Gruff.

Not the usual Cinderella, or Snow White, or The Three Little Pigs, or any other of the many Little Golden Books I had as a child. My favorite was about the goats. 

Why The Three Billy Goats Gruff as my favorite? Maybe because it was about a family. Although, it be a family of goats. The goats were brothers. Or maybe deep down I had a thing for trolls. I don't really know.

Maybe I liked that the brothers were not afraid of the troll. Ok, maybe a little afraid at first. But they show that you can be brave and strong no matter what you face. 

I stopped in the bookstore yesterday to get a book with sounds for a birthday gift for one of my littles. And there in plain sight was The Three Billy Goats Gruff. And I had to have it for myself to start reading to my little ones when they come. 

Do you have a favorite children's book when you were a child?

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

I am linked with Oh What A Happy Day Party.

Just in case you read my recent post on Christmas in July, I want to keep you posted on how my Christmas shopping is coming along.

Today I got a great deal on boxes to mail some packages in. While in the post office waiting in a long, long line I was looking at the brightly designed bubble envelopes to mail in. And they have boxes, too. And they had a huge stack of Christmas printed boxes marked 75% off. (These must be from last year.) And some other printed boxes in the group. 

I do have Christmas on my mind, but I also have birthdays and other summer things on my mind, too. 

The blue box and the pink box in the picture is to use for birthday mailings. My two little ones have bdays coming up and I want to send them a little something in the mail to receive on their day. 

The boxes were $3.75 each, at 75% off made them 94 cents each. And I love the  "To and From" box on the box. It's the neat little things that I oooh and ahhh over. 

I can stuff them full of gifts then put the box in a postal flat rate shipping box. It makes for a cute gift box without wrapping paper. And who doesn't love to get packages in the mail? 

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

The Green House DIY

We started a green house a while back.  It's a work in progress. It's almost complete. It needs the side walls. It needs more plants and a soil bin. It needs running water.  It needs a cute door. And it needs a center hanging light. And some outside plants to lush it up. But other than that it's good to go, until winter comes.

Here is a picture as it is now, incomplete, but workable until winter comes. Larry designed and built it. It will have drop open windows on sides and back and see thru /poly ribbed plastic panels. And a cute old timey wooden door for the front that was salvaged from a demolishing project. The roof is already on, which is the same see thru poly ribbed plastic panels, purchased from Lowes.

A shelf ledge along each side holds the plants and some pots and things. This huge plant has been sitting in the same spot for over a year now and is growing wild. It began as just a tiny piece. Just last week I transplanted some into the pot on the side of it. At least for now the green house effect is working, as my plans are to grow and restart plants.

The concrete pavers down the middle were salvaged from someone else's project that they were disassembling. They've been stacked up until now. The perfect fit for the center floor. A bistro set sits in the corner for the time being. 

A few new start plants have made their way onto the shelves. And some hanging from the ceiling beams.

The lady of the house sits and keeps watch over the goings on. She is tied to the post at the moment. I don't want her going anywhere. I found her at a yard sale a long time ago.

Hoping to show the finished project very soon.


Sunday, July 14, 2013

Me and Cohen

Me and Cohen spent the day together today while his parents went boating.

He will be 1 year old in 2 weeks. So I spent the day singing Happy Birthday to You and having him hold 1 finger up. I want him to be ready for his big day.

We took a walk outside thru the subdivision cause I like to look in new houses being built. It kept us occupied for a little while. 

He sure does eat a lot. Lunch, snack, snack, and dinner. 

Miss Priss came over to play and stayed while her mom went to tan and get her nails and toes done. 

They don't look too happy, but they were playing good together and I was trying so hard to get a good picture of them together.  I kept interrupting them to look at me for pictures. And Miss Priss was clean when her mom brought her, but she had a snack with Cohen.  And we had a food accident. 

Fun time went by fast and their parents came home and I was sent on my way. 

Saturday, July 13, 2013

End of Pageant, Day 2

Day 2 went by fast and was just as fun as Day 1.

Start time for 0-11 months, 12-23 months, and 2-3 years was 9am. Crowning was at 12 noon. There were 12 contestants in her division of 0-11 months.This was 5 pageants in 1. Participants compete once for 10 judges who are from 5 different pageant affiliates. Everything went smoothly. There were many gifts and awards. See last nights competition here.

Waiting to begin.

Again, if only she would smile in front of the judges we could breathe a sigh of relief. Hoping when she gets a little older, she will understand to smile big.

All 5 pageant affiliates presented their individual awards. Out of 12 participants. Brooklyn got two 2nd runner ups and three 3rd runner ups and one prettiest hair award. She got a trophy, a crown, and award certificates.

She did great. Just have to work on that smile. She was  tired. She conked out after her last appearance on stage to get her awards.

Some of her gifts were a charm bracelet with a crown charm, a small pearl droplet necklace, a beach bucket, a set of nail polish-bath bubbles-and lip gloss (all for babies), and a toy fishing pole with fish. The fishing pole was her favorite. It was like the best part of her day to play with the fishing pole. Babies are totally un-phased with what we want. It's the simple things that make them content.

You can read about Day 1 here.


Friday, July 12, 2013

The Red White Blue Pageant

We are doing a two day pageant. I say we, but Brooklyn is the participant and her mom, Jennifer, is the, well, is the mom, and does what moms do.

The July RWB (red white blue) pageant was tonight. Tomorrow is casual wear. Tonight was really fun and a good experience. The stage was beautiful. Some good music. The participants outfits were all spectacular with sparkles and glitters. About 75 contestants.

We were there to cheer on Brooklyn in the 0-11 months. This is her waiting for the event to start. Notice her little white cowboy boots in the pictures.

There were 8 in her line up for 0-11 months.  Here are the first few. There weren't any tiny babies. It seemed they  were all just about the same age, around 9-11 months. She's the first one on the right.

She got 2nd runner up. That's not too bad. Of course we wanted queen. If we could just get her to smile a little in front of the judges then we could breathe a sigh of relief. She is wild down in the audience before, during, and after. Once her mom walks on stage with her she freezes. I guess it's all the people and noise and lights. But that's ok. Right?

It was fun for all of us. And I am sure we will be doing more. 

I made her outfit. You can read about it here


Thursday, July 11, 2013

Christmas in July

Starting Christmas in July is always exciting for me. You know how fast the first part of the year goes by. And the second half goes by just as fast if not faster. I have for many many years started Christmas in July.

  • first, start thinking about Christmas to get you in the mood.
  • make a list of people who you will be gift giving to. (it is better to give than to receive.).
  • do a little window shopping, online surfing, and catalog viewing. This will give you some ideas of the new hot items coming out.
  • as I "window" shop everywhere, I add ideas to my people list that I think that person will love. I put several ideas by one persons name so I have more ideas to choose from once I start choosing their gift.
  • begin buying one or possibly two gifts a payday or every month. That way you get to Christmas shop often and not feel the money pain all at once. Unless you have a Christmas account where you would have all your money at once to buy gifts later on in the year. 
  • keep your eyes open for little unique things that would be good for stocking stuffers and buy them when you see them. 
  • remember, you can plan ahead to make gifts like crafts or sewing or hand work and get them made early and marked off your list. And if you plan to give baked goods go ahead and stock up on the containers you will be presenting them in. 
  • keep your name and gift list updated regularly so you know where you are with things and what's what. You may be scratching out ideas on one name and adding new ideas until you are settled on what the perfect gift will be.
  • finalize your packages with pretty paper and bows and name tags and put them under the tree or ship them off.
Poochie from a Christmas Past
Then, it will be time to trim the tree, decorate your home, play Christmas Carols and enjoy the season. 
And get in that last minute hustle and bustle of the shopping crowd to get that one last gift.


There really is such a thing as a "Food Fairy"

Food Fairies are those of you who prepare meals and deliver to those who are in need of a helping hand at just the right time. Whether home from the hospital, or grieving a loss, or any number of reasons why you show up on their doorstep at just the right time in their daily life.

I recently had my own Food Fairy. Although I wasn't in any dire need of a helping hand, it was nice that my MIL sent a meal  to us. Only because her oldest and only son of 4 children cut her grass today and did her yard work. And it was nice to come home to a home-cooked meal after work. 

If you are a Food Fairy, know that you are much appreciated to those who are on the receiving end. 

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Today and Tomorrow

Besides being work days, other things are on the agenda.

Today the Poochie gets dropped off for her spa day. The Poochie gets a day of grooming and special attention more than I do. She thinks we are torturing her. She is crazy not to like it.

Tomorrow after work we will be attending a seminar on retirement planning at a downtown restaurant. It includes dinner for two and all the info you need for your retirement and estate planning. Considering the husband retired last year, we might be about a year too late on this one.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Circa 1860's

An unusual luncheon event at work gave me and my 7 co-workers a day out at a Civil War era home.

My boss' son and his wife own the home and have lived there for over 20 years. They have re-vamped it and it is beautiful. The old look mixed with a modern touch. I would love this to be my house. 

My guess is probably 15 foot ceilings if not higher. A center entrance with bed rooms on each side. And furniture to match the era. They actually live there everyday. 

I did sneak some cell phone pictures. I couldn't resist. 

The view from the front. 

The front center entrance. Large round columns.

Front center entrance hall from the inside.

Dining room in the center of the house.

One of the 4 bedrooms off the center entrance hall.

A newly re-vamped bath. It acts as a jack and Jill bath between two bedrooms off the same side of the entrance hall.

The food was just as impressive as the home. A back addition houses a modern den and breakfast area where the lunch was set up. A large butlers pantry between the dining and the breakfast area contained the desserts and coffee and water, sodas, and wine. 

A small sampling of food that I enjoyed was sliced honey ham, cool cucumber salad, finger chicken salad sandwiches, pimento salad, rolls, an orange jelled salad, a variety of nuts in some kind of sauce, sliced tomatoes, and other dishes. All served buffet style. And several pound cake varieties, cookies, and brownies. 

My favorite was the cool cumber salad. It was delicious. Round slices of cumbers, thin onion slices, taste of maybe Italian dressing(?), red grapes, tomato cubes. And maybe a few other ingredients. 

I like work days like this


Sunday, July 7, 2013

 "I sought The Lord, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears." Psalms 34:4

Saturday, July 6, 2013

The end of the day

It was an easy day in the kitchen. And a full day of house cleaning. 

Breakfast was egg and a side of wheat toast topped with homemade jam.

Lunch was green salad with home grown tomatoes from sister-in-law, onion, grated cheese, and sliced boiled egg.

Dinner was fresh made chunky chicken salad with grapes tossed on a bed of lettuce and a side of crackers. 

Then, by the end of the day I had ruined my healthy nutritious meals with fresh baked cookies for dessert. The easy way.  

Friday, July 5, 2013

Picture of the week

I have my very own I-reporters out and about who send me pictures of their week. This large red fish caught in the gulf last week during the end of red fish season. I don't know the size and weight, but I did get a package of fish to cook.