Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving

My Thanksgiving preparations are now complete.  I've been working on everything the past few days so that tomorrow can pass by smoothly and with no stress.  My biggest help with all the preparations is my trusty notebook.  Years ago I realized that it just didn't make much sense to reinvent my grocery list, menu, and gather up the necessary recipes each and every year.  So I saved everything on the computer, printed out a hard copy and placed it all in a holiday notebook.  I even included a list of goals for each day for the week prior so that I wasn't overwhelmed on one single day.  I got that idea from my mom years ago when I was preparing my first Thanksgiving dinner, and didn't have a clue how to make it all work out.  She sent me a letter (of which I still have) detailing how she broke it all down so it didn't seem like such an impossible task.  Preparing this feast isn't impossible anymore; and all of the hard work always seems worthwhile when we sit down around the table together as a family and give thanks, enjoying a feast that the Lord has so graciously provided.

I hope all of you have a very Happy Thanksgiving Day filled with memory making moments with family, good food, lots of laughter, and most of all, an abundance of things to be thankful for.

Monday, October 14, 2013


Today I attended a funeral.  The deceased wasn't a direct relative of mine; however, it was my brother-in-law's father.  It made me sad to see my sister and brother-in-law grieving, as well as the rest of my brother-in-law's family.  The loss of a loved one is so difficult.  But during the funeral I got to thinking about life; because on my way over to the funeral, I had a message from a friend that her daughter-in-law had gone to the hospital to deliver their first baby.  So not only was I praying for comfort for the family of the deceased; but also for the family of this new little life coming into the world.  An end of a life being honored, and a new little life beginning .... all at the same time.

It made me think that in our busy day-to-day hustle, lives are beginning and ending all around us.  People are grieving and rejoicing everywhere continually.  In Ecclesiastes 3:2 it says there is "a time to be born, and a time to die".  They are listed together because they go together.  God's plan keeps rolling along without a hitch .... babies are born while others are passing away.  God commands us to love one another.  That's why it hurts so much when we lose a loved one.  But God knew that would be the case and promised to comfort the grieving.  He understands our emotions.

The name of the man whose funeral I attended was Ed.  I thought about how Ed had undoubtedly rejoiced at the birth of all of his children, and as I glanced around the room, there they all were honoring his life.  Without him they would not have lived, and now that he has died he has left a legacy to continue on as it had been before he was even born.  His parents had rejoiced over his birth when he was born, the pattern of life just keeps going on.

So tonight I first raise a glass to Ed.  For being a loving husband, someone who loved his wife for 63 years without ever having an argument, yes that's really true.  He lived with his sweetheart until the end.  And for being a devoted father instilling in all of his children strong values and the importance of family.  And secondly, I raise a glass to a brand new baby boy who is beginning a legacy of his own.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Homemade Happy Meals

Just in case you  might be trying to think of a fun little surprise for your kids; or perhaps you are hosting a birthday party, and wondering just how to serve a lunch to active little ones that don't really want to sit down at the table -- I just happen to have a good solution.  This summer when my sister, Molly, was hosting a rehearsal dinner for her son's wedding, she needed an idea for the meal for younger kids as she knew that there was a good chance they would not be interested in the Indian food that she had planned.  She came up with packing individual snacks for them that would keep their interest and fill them up.

Snacks of choice included an individual fruit cup of mandarin oranges along with a spoon, Gogurt, cheese and breadsticks, string cheese, Cracker Jacks, and a box drink. 

All fit nicely into a foil pie plate that just happened to have a snap on plastic lid.


My nieces then labeled each one with the names of the kids.  This part is good because when the kids walk away, they don't have to fuss over which one belongs to them upon their return.

Of course any combination of items can be placed on the plate; but a very nice thing about doing something such as this is that it can all be done ahead of time.  And who isn't all for getting things done ahead of time.


Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Wedding Centerpieces

It's been a little over two weeks since my son's wedding.  Hard to believe all of the anticipation and planning is now well behind us.  The wedding was beautiful.  We were blessed with perfect weather for the outdoor ceremony, and also blessed with so many friends and family taking the time to come and celebrate with us.  Beautiful seems almost lacking in describing the bride, my new daughter.  She was absolutely stunning!  My son was so handsome and so happy.  I loved seeing him beam when his bride walked down the aisle. 

The colors were red, black, and white.  We had told Emma, the bride, that we would help her with the centerpieces.  I wanted to be able to use mason jars since I have a huge supply, and that would cut down on the cost of buying vases.  So after discussing ideas with Luke and Emma, mason jars it was.  They were filled with baby's breath, which was so pretty and simple.  Red ribbons were tied around the neck of the jar and a small black square with a hand printed "G" written with a chalk pencil on black paper was tied to the red ribbon.  Two little rhinestones were also placed beside the G.  Fresh red rose petals were sprinkled on each table on top of red and black paper, and finished off with silver glitter. 

Friday, July 12, 2013

The Mother of the Groom

Tomorrow is a big day in our family.  My son is getting married.  He is the first of my children to take this step, and thus it is a very new experience for me as his mother.  When my children were young, it was not uncommon for mothers of grown children to tell me to enjoy the time with my kids because it will go by so quickly.  Well, I'm there now, and that is so true.  They really do grow up in the wink of an eye.

I'm happy for my son, and pray that God will bless his new life abundantly.  I'm thankful to be getting a new daughter, and look forward to having her as a part of our family now.  I feel like I am turning a corner in my life and heading down a new avenue as a mother, but it is a good avenue, and I look forward to seeing what lies ahead.

God bless you, Luke.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Color Themed Gifts

Recently, when the time came for me to send someone a birthday gift, my daughters had the bright idea of giving a gift wherein all of the items had to do with a favorite color of the recipient.  We went with a "pink" theme, and had a great time choosing items to put in the gift:

As you can see from the picture, we had mints, candy, pink pens that even had pink ink, a pink notebook, pink nail polish, hand sanitizer, Starbucks Iced Refreshers, cute napkins, and pink Mediterranean salt. 

All of the fun items were then wrapped in pink tissue paper and tied with pink ribbon:

And wrapped in a cute pink gift bag of course:

Really, when you think about it, who wouldn't like to receive a fun gift like this.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Farm Chicks Treasures - Part 2

To finish off my posts of treasures spotted at the annual Farm Chicks Antiques Show, here is a very random photo of a display that caught my eye.  I think there must have been something else to keep this particular spool of string company, however only shredded paper was left when I ambled by:

Random coffee pots and flowers:

When I was a young girl I loved doing paint-by-number kits.  Now I see them popping up quite frequently in various shows that I attend.   It just seems funny that now they are sought after "works of art":

I immediately thought of one of my daughters when I saw this picture:

Rolling pins -- one of my favorite things:

I would love to have this sitting on my front porch:

And last, but certainly not least, I have always been fascinated by large cabinets filled with drawers.  When I saw this piece, I mentioned to my sister, Megan, that I would just love an excuse to buy one of these.  She had the perfect answer.  She told me that I could use it to hold all of my random Farm Chicks Antique show purchases that I wished I could buy but had no idea what to do with.  Perfect excuse.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Farm Chicks Treasures - Part 1

At the beginning of this month, I had the pleasure of attending the annual Farm Chicks Antique Show in Spokane, Washington.  It runs for two days, of which I attended on the second day.  One would think that there wouldn't be much in the way of interesting items left after the hordes of shoppers were finished on Saturday; however, I managed to find quite a few fun things.

Roller skates -- I remember wearing skates such as these:

Blue enamel wear cups -- I just love enamel ware and think the different shades of blue available are so pretty:

Hand painted quail eggs -- such a pretty shade of blue:

Sweet birds -- I'm really not sure how these were made, but they sure caught my attention:

Salt shakers filled with German glass glitter -- I would love to have each and every one of these colors.  They remind me of my sister, Kass, who simply loves to use glitter on her art work:

And bundles of pretty lavender:

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Fun Day Ahead

You have all undoubtedly heard that Disneyland is supposedly the happiest place on earth.  Well, I think that is debatable as I'm quite certain that today I will be visiting one of the happiest places on earth.  It's the annual Farm Chicks Antique Show in Spokane, Washington.  I look forward to this show every year, and as a bonus, get to attend it with my sister, Megan.  I will take lots of pictures to share with those of you who aren't able to partake of such an exquisite event.  Here is a picture of her promotional poster .... now really, how cute is this!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Lemon Bars

Chocolate is my all time favorite dessert, whatever form it may come in; but now and then I do stray from that tasty morsel and venture into other dessert arenas.  Recently, I was planning a visit to my mom and wanted to bring some dessert along to give to her.  I know how she loves lemony desserts, and my eye landed on a lemon bar recipe in the current issue of Food Network magazine.  It is a Paula Deen recipe, and knowing her reputation for rich and delicious desserts, decided to give it a try.  Well, I must say, these were the most fabulous lemon bars that I have ever tasted in my entire life.  I think from now on I will just dismiss any future recipes I might happen upon, because I don't think these could ever be topped.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy Mother's Day

Just think, a day just for honoring mothers.  Of course, mothers should always be honored, but having a special day set aside for various festivities all in the name of honoring a mom is a blessing.  Being a mom can be hard work, young or old, and her hat may change as the years go by, but once a mom, always a mom. 

I will be honoring my mom today at a family picnic.  She has always been a great mom -- always beside each and every one of her children no matter what difficulties they have faced.  Thanks mom, for all that you have done, and will continue to be.

And as a mom, I am always more than blessed by the actions of my kids on this day.  My son sent me the flowers in the above picture, and they are so pretty.
To all of you moms out there, have a wonderful day.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Everything Goes with Ice Cream

It is almost 8:00 in the evening as I write this.  I have been gone from the house all day, and came home kind of tired and in a put-your-feet-up kind of mood.  However, that mood quickly changed when I found a parcel on my doorstep from Amazon.  I had placed an order earlier this week, but wasn't even expecting it so soon.  Upon opening the package, my tiredness immediately disappeared and was replaced with a happy dance because inside was a book I've been looking forward to receiving.  It is called "Everything Goes with Ice Cream" by my blogging friend, Koralee Teichroeb.  Koralee is the resident blogger over at Bluebird Notes, which happens to be one of my very favorite blogs.  Since I've only just received the book this evening, I haven't had a chance to try any of the recipes; however, upon initial perusal, I know it is going to be such a fun book.  Not only is it filled with delicious looking recipes, she has also included craft projects, and little introductions to her daughters and a few of her friends that contributed recipes to the book.  It is filled with beautiful photography, which I'm going to guess is all by Koralee herself, being the amazing photographer that she is.  I can already tell that it will be a late night for me because I want to start reading through this delightful book and start planning on what I want to make first.  Stay tuned, I will keep you posted of everything I try.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

A Promise of Spring

This morning when I woke up I was greeted by light.  Something I think I typically take for granted.  As the days get shorter and shorter in the early part of winter, I notice the darkness; but when the tides shift and the days begin getting longer and longer, it surprises me on a morning like today when I all of a sudden realize that it isn't pitch black outside when I wake up.  It all causes my heart to rejoice because it's like a ray of hope that spring is truly on its way.  And to top it all off there has actually been sunlight streaming in the window this morning (a rare commodity around here in the winter) and birds are chirping merrily outside.  There is still snow on the ground, but that really doesn't matter, because the birds know what's around the corner.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

A Fresh Beginning

Today marks a new day, a new month, and a new year.  That's a lot of new for one morning.  And really, even though it is just a continuation of our story from yesterday, there is just something different about this morning each year.  It's like we've been given a fresh start, a do-over for some, or a fresh outlook on what lies ahead.  I kind of like to think about it as if I have been handed a brand new, blank canvas.  God is my teacher, and by following His instruction, I can finish up this year with a beautiful picture.  Undoubtedly this year will be filled with many blessings, many trials, and unforeseen events.  But that's how we learn from Him.  It isn't paint-by-number, but closely following His teachings, having faith, and trusting that He has a plan for our lives.  Happy New Year everyone.