Saturday, June 29, 2013

{{surprise}}

I can't believe I pulled it off again! Either I'm getting better at this or Peter isn't the snoop he used to be. {{51}} has started off great...he had an awesome birthday!
He got lots of birthday cards and some birthday $$.....

He loved the shirt that Nathan bought him {and the card with a sweet message inside}

and he really LOVED my gift....

I had planned for us to leave on Saturday morning and stay with Logan & Lindsey that night after spending the day in O.C., but they want us to come Friday evening for a cookout. Lindsey is working on Sunday, so we would hardly get any time with her. Sounds great!! Peter is very excited {{and so am I}}. Happy Birthday Peter!!!! xoxo

I fixed a yummy dinner....marinated chicken on the grill {which Peter cooked}, rolls, cole slaw, & pineapple casserole...oh, and pie!

Pie of the Month: Lemon Meringue

It's Peter's birthday, and in keeping with my family's tradition, there was no cake! Dad made me a Coconut Cream Pie for my birthday in March, and last week, Nathan wanted Lemon Lush for his birthday. I knew exactly what Peter was going to request for his special day.....


Lemon Meringue Pie!!
He doesn't want the usual lemon meringue pie, he likes the one with Eagle Brand and a graham cracker crust like his Nanny used to make for him. It's super easy {and super sweet!!}.
Here's the recipe:

Mix together one can of condensed milk, 1/2 cup lemon juice, and 3 egg yolks. Pour into crust.

Make meringue: beat 3 egg whites and 1/4 teaspoon cream of tarter until foamy. Gradually add 1/3 cup sugar and beat until stiff. Spread on top of lemon mixture and bake for 15 minutes @ 350 degrees.

Happy Birthday Peter!!!

why I love my job.....

I say it all the time, but I really do love my job. The email I got today from a recent guest confirms it once again.....

Hi, Susan!
I had tears in my eyes when I saw your e-mail pop up again, saying "see you soon!"  I sure enjoyed my stay!  Thank you so much for making everything so perfect!  I meant to mention how much I enjoyed those beautiful hydrangeas you had placed in my room!  They added such a nice touch and made me feel so welcome! 
The plaque in the bathroom that says, "Live as though heaven is on earth", meant so much to me, too!  It was so appropriate and made me feel like it was a message from God that it's time for me to find my happiness here on earth, instead of waiting until I get to heaven! 
Have a wonderful summer, relaxing on your back patio :) , and being the warm, welcoming hostess to your island and your very special Bed & Breakfast Inn!
Thank you for being so good to me!
Love,     -----  xoxoxo


I have met some of the sweetest, nicest people, and have made many new friends at the b&b. I am so thankful for this wonderful job I have!

Friday, June 28, 2013

another birthday surprise for Peter!!!

I can't believe that I am actually going to surprise Peter again this year! Through all of our years together, I've never been able to keep his gifts a secret. He snoops, and questions, and won't give up until we finally break and tell him. Last year, we surprised him with a new grill for his 50th birthday {which he really, really loved}, and as of today he has no clue what I'm giving him this year. Happy Birthday Peter.....You'll get to enjoy this gift very soon!! :O) :O)

Thursday, June 27, 2013

VBS Day 3 + Program

To be completely honest, my week at VBS has been a whirlwind! I don't know if it was the limited time we had with the kids each day, or because it wasn't the usual Bible School set-up, or if it was that the kids just got out of school last week, or that I am another year older, whatever the reason, up until tonight's program, I wondered if the kids had gotten anything at all out of Bible School this year.
But tonight, I was so proud of them as they stood there and sang their hearts out and did all of the motions to the fun songs we had learned. From the youngest to the oldest, they put their all into tonight's program with a big smile on their faces. Even though it had been a hectic, noisy, unorganized week, the message the kids brought tonight, through their singing, was the sole purpose of VBS and in fact, they had learned quite a bit this week!

VBS Day 3
I left my camera home! :O(

Our craft was: Prayer Rocks
We gave them a list of words {Peace, Love, Faith..} to choose from to write {with colored Sharpies} on their rock. I had something like this in mind:
{Bible School} fruit of the spirit stones
Only a couple of the kids got creative {I wish I had gotten a picture because they were so cute!}The majority of the kids just printed their word on the rock. It really didn't matter though if it was fancy or not, the rock was meant to be a reminder, a reminder to PRAY!
I also printed out this to go along with the rock:
{Bible School} Prayer Rock Poem
Hopefully, they will keep the rock on their dresser or on the bathroom sink, or somewhere where they will see it. Sometimes in our busy day, things as simple as a rock, will help us to remember to do things like pray or read our Bible.

Our snack:
Mom made brownies for our snack, and she brought pretzels & soda. We played a quick memory game, then, we went over to church for our last night with Mountain Moses Ministries.

Tonight, we had our VBS closing program. It was in memory of Reese. The kids sang a few of her favorite songs, then ended with the songs they had learned this week. I think their favorite {and mine} was "Jesus Is My Super Hero".

He's the one who makes the sun shine. He's the one who puts the moon in the sky. He's the one who hung the stars one by one.

He's the one who makes the birds sing. He's the one who makes your dreams so high. He's the one who makes me smile day by day.

[Chorus]
Jesus you're my superhero. You're my star, my best friend. Jesus you're my superhero. You're my star, my best friend.

Yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah. Better than Spiderman. Yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah. Better than Superman. Yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah. Better than Batman. Yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah. Better than anyone.

[Chorus]
Jesus you're my superhero. You're my star,my best friend. Jesus you're my superhero. You're my star, my best friend. Jesus you're my Superhero. You're my star, my best friend. Jesus you're my superhero. You're my star, my best friend.

Yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah. Better than Yu-Gi-Oh.
Yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah. Better than Barbie. Yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah. Better than Actionman. Yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah,yeah. Better than everyone.


[Chorus]
Jesus you're my superhero. You're my star, my best friend. Jesus you're my superhero. You're my star, my best friend.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

VBS Day 2

Things went a little smoother today. The same 12 kids showed up (with just as much energy}, but things were a little more organized today. After some group singing in assembly, we went to our room and got busy on our craft.







Today's craft:

How to make: Make a cross with painter's tape on a piece of printer paper. Using watercolor paint, paint a design on the paper, filling up the entire page. Once dry, peel off tape to reveal the cross. Write a message or verse on the page {we'll add "Jesus is alive!}. Glue or tape to a sheet of construction paper. Makes a pretty poster! They did a great job on these.


Today's snack:

Betty Anne bought some yummy cookies.

I had planned to play a few games, but before we knew it, our time was up and we needed to head over to the church for the program. The kids LOVE it....and so do the adults. Great message and soooo much FUN!!

Monday, June 24, 2013

VBS Day 1

Today was the first day of VBS at our church. We are doing things differently this year, since we are combining VBS with visiting puppets. We have an hour in our rooms for crafts and snacks, then another hour in church with the puppets for singing and stories. Mom & I have 4th & 5th graders again this year. Our helpers are: Jordan Ray, Cameron, Victoria, & Paige. Today we had 12 {slightly fidgety/borderline rambunctious} kids! :O) :O) Just kidding....they were a bit hyper and energetic though, but the first day is always the roughest.


Our craft today:

a magnet for the fridge

How to make: I printed out the verse at home. The house frame was made out of 5 popsicle sticks glued together. They added a few jewels, a small drawing of a house,  and a magnet on the back.

Our snack today:

Matthew's mom made shark cupcakes!! CUTE...& yummy! :O)

Then we went over to church, and enjoyed the music and puppet show.





See you again tomorrow Matthew, Chandler, Job, Layla, Andrew, Joshua, Alina, Betty Anne, Layah, Christian, Thomas, Abby.....looking forward to Day 2 of VBS....I just need to get a good night's rest! :O)

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Grilled Cabbage

I love trying new recipes, especially when there is a grill involved. Today, we knocked off our first bucket list item "try a new recipe". When I put that on the list Peter said, "I thought we do that already, we try new recipes all the time". My original thoughts were to find some really involved, multi-step dish to cook together, but then I thought, it's summer, keep it simple, so maybe we can do a weekly grill recipe that's new to us instead. I had some cabbage on hand, and decided to try a Pinterest recipe for Grilled Cabbage. It was sooooooooooo good!!! Peter did some kabobs, and I also made some flavored rice. Great dinner! Here's the cabbage recipe...super easy!

Cut head of cabbage into 4 pieces. Trim out core. Put each quarter on a piece of heavy duty foil and spread butter on cut sides. Sprinkle each wedge with salt/pepper/garlic powder/parmesan cheese. Wrap a slice of bacon around each piece. Cover tightly. Grill on medium heat for 40 minutes, turning after 20 minutes. It is fork tender, but not mushy.

D-E-L-I-S-H

kabobs with marinated pork tenderloin, yellow squash, green pepper, onion, & mushroom {veggies were tossed in olive oil, salt & pepper}
......this evening, we sat outside, just enjoying the view {and bird watching} :O)

Jaxson joined the fun....

....and Gozzy checked things out too!

Summer Bucket List

Friday, June 21, 2013

{summer bucket list}


Summer is officially here and since the bucket list idea was such a hit last year, I decided to push my luck and try it again this year!! We don't have little ones any more, so our list is pretty basic. But for our family {who in the past, didn't want to do anything "FUN" or different}, this list is the motivation for the three of us to do more together and actually try a few new things! Last year, we checked everything off the list and we made some great memories!
Here is our 2013 list.....

The list looks similar to last year's list, but I added a few "new" things, like make taffy {Peter's request} and fly a kite {something we all haven't done in years!!}. :O) I'll update with posts {and pictures} as we check things off the list.

Okay guys....let's get started!

------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Here's the list: click on the checked off items for a link to the post.

*go kayaking
*game night
*VBS Day 3 
*VBS Day 2
*VBS Day 1
*make your own pizza
*grill (Nathan)
*sunset on the beach
*go fishing
*make taffy
*overnight trip
*read a book
*beach day
*4th of July BBQ
*fly a kite {{{LOL}}}
*try a new recipe
*make banana splits
*bonfire
*watch fireworks
*go to a ballgame

*have fun!!!!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Nathan's 18th Birthday

Happy 18th Birthday Nathan!!!
Lots of cards, gifts, & birthday wishes...

Nathan asked for all of his favorite party foods for dinner....chicken salad, shrimp dip {w/Scoops}, taco dip, & instead of birthday cake- Lemon Lush!! We decided to take it outside, so Peter fired up the grill and did some hot dogs too. I found the perfect hot dogs....
:O) :O) :O)

Nathan had a great party...the weather was amazing and NO bugs!! He always wants a family get together and this year was no different.

Gran & Pop

Mom Mom

{{Nathan & Kayla}}


While the party was going on, a visitor showed up....
a Purple Martin!!!! :O) :O) :O)

Peter is thrilled! He's been hoping to get martins in his new bird house this year. There goes the theory that things need to be quiet and no activity, because they decided to show up right in the middle of Nathan's party and tried to steal the spotlight from the birthday boy! :O)
make a wish Nathan.....


HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!
We love you!!!
xoxoxo

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

The Simple Woman's Day Book: June Edition


Outside my window...today was a bit overcast, but finally, a day without rain. Very comfortable temp!

I am thinking...about VBS....it starts next week! This year, we are doing things a little different. We are only responsible for a craft and a snack each day, then the kids will go over to the church for music and lesson with visiting puppets!! :O) Mom and I will have 4th & 5th grades again. Looking forward to our second year of doing Bible School!!

I am thankful...for 30 years of marriage!!! :O) It was our anniversary on Monday!! Our life has gone through many stages over the past 30 years, but I'm looking forward to seeing what the next 30 holds! :O) xoxoxo

In the kitchen...Peter did burgers on the grill. He LOVES grilling and I am soooo happy that he loves grilling!! :O) :O)

I am wearing...khaki capris & a Daughtry t-shirt.

I am creating...another "Summer Bucket List" {I'll post soon!}

I am looking forward to...finishing our backyard. We put down more pavers earlier this week and today the table, chairs, and umbrella arrived. We love it!!! I am so excited about our new outdoor space!!

Around the house...we had to get a new hot water heater! ugh....

A favorite quote for the day:


One of my favorite things...watching "Gilmore Girls". I dvr three episodes every Saturday to watch over the weekend.


Upcoming plans...we'll be celebrating Nathan's 18th birthday tomorrow!!!!

A peek into my day...

...Peter trying it out! :O)

Sunday, June 16, 2013

My Dad

My Dad
Your love, wisdom, quiet nature, strong will, patience, loyalty, kindness, honesty, hard work ethic, sense of humor, abitilty to bake the best birthday pies ever, willingness to do any project I ask you to do for me (with perfection), and so many other amazing qualities are what make you the wonderful Dad & Pop you are! You have always, always been there for me and I love you with all my heart!!!
Happy Father's Day!!!!

Friday, June 14, 2013

5Q Friday: Father's Day Edition


1. What do you appreciate most about your children's Dad? He tells them every day how much he loves them and he lets them know how proud he is of both of them. They know that he would do anything for them and that they can always come to him if/when they need him. :O)

2. Do you always wear your seat belt? always...always....always!

3. Do you dream and do you remember them? I dream often, and remember lots of them. They are always weird and make no sense at all though.


4. What is one thing you swore you'd never let your kids do before having them, that you have now changed your ways about? My answer to this would be "get a tattoo". I personally don't like tattoos, but when Logan wanted his first at age 16, Peter and I went along with the idea. Peter decided to make it a father/son thing and got his first ever tattoo also. Of course, anyone who has gotten a tattoo knows that you can't stop at just one, so over the next few years, Logan got several more. Fast forward to Nathan, age 16......he started talking about getting a tattoo, but I was dead set against it. Nathan thought that I was unfair for letting Logan and not him, but I didn't back down, and he turns 18 next week...still tattoo-less. It's okay to change the rules {back}, even if you went against some of them with your first child.

5. If you could be granted one wish, what would it be? The first thing that came to mind were the lyrics to the song "My Wish" that was sung at graduation last week. When I went back and read them, I thought that pretty much summed up my wish for my boys.

I hope that the days come easy and the moments pass slow,
And each road leads you where you want to go,
And if you're faced with a choice, and you have to choose,
I hope you choose the one that means the most to you.
And if one door opens to another door closed,
I hope you keep on walkin' till you find the window,
If it's cold outside, show the world the warmth of your smile,

But more than anything, more than anything,
My wish, for you, is that this life becomes all that you want it to,
Your dreams stay big, and your worries stay small,
You never need to carry more than you can hold,
And while you're out there getting where you're getting to,
I hope you know somebody loves you, and wants the same things too,
Yeah, this, is my wish.

I hope you never look back, but ya never forget

All the ones who love you, in the place you left,
I hope you always forgive, and you never regret,
And you help somebody every chance you get,
Oh, you find God's grace, in every mistake,
And you always give more than you take.

But more than anything, yeah, and more than anything,
My wish, for you, is that this life becomes all that you want it to,
Your dreams stay big, and your worries stay small,
You never need to carry more than you can hold,
And while you're out there getting where you're getting to,
I hope you know somebody loves you, and wants the same things too,
Yeah, this, is my wish.

This is my wish
I hope you know somebody loves you (my wish, for you).
May all your dreams stay big (my wish, for you).

so you have an idea, huh?

Earlier this spring, I mentioned to Peter that I would like to spruce up the backyard. I had so many great ideas floating around in my head {most of them Pinterest inspired} for the space just outside our backdoor. A little backyard oasis.....
I sketched it all out on paper and knew exactly what I wanted: flower beds full of bright, cheery blooms, pavers edged in old bricks and marble chip stones, seating of some sort, maybe colorful Adirondack chairs or even a table and chairs covered with a pretty umbrella, and to make this space even more perfect, a fire pit.
Somehow, {back in March}, my idea and Peter's idea for this backyard project weren't the same. We did, however, end up putting in the flower beds {which are gorgeous!}, and we rearranged the pavers and put up some fencing to keep the goose off the walkway. It wasn't my "dream" space, but it turned out so nice...I really, really love it! :O) I tucked away my other ideas, knowing that Peter would see how good the yard looked and would be on board for more yard improvement next year.

Fast forward to Monday.......Peter came in from the backyard and stood at the kitchen window. He called me in from the living room to show me something outside. He had an "idea".......he suggested bumping the fence back a bit, putting down more pavers, and adding a table and chairs. Great idea Peter!...LOL! :O) He asked if I thought it was a good idea.....um, yea.....then he just kept going on and on about grilling and eating at the table under the umbrella, and that we should add tiki torches to keep the bugs away, and I think the words fire pit were even said. LOLOLOL....I just smiled.....
Later, he asked again if I liked his idea. I couldn't hold it any longer. I said I love your idea, but actually, it was MY idea....don't you remember wayyyyy back in March, me telling you all of my ideas and then a certain shopping trip to Home Depot, and I couldn't even get you to come in the garden center to look at all the awesome yard stuff???? LOL
Notice I am taking the humorous side to this. Men are just so funny! I've learned over our 30 {not a typo} years of marriage, that I eventually get what I want, but sometimes I get it in the most roundabout way!!
So, with less than 3 weeks until the 4th of July, we have much work to do if we are going to have the "Big 4th of July BBQ" that Peter plans to have "in our backyard"!! :O):O):O)
Here's how the yard looks now:

......that grassy area will be covered with pavers {and maybe a rug} and a table and chairs will fill that spot. Hopefully, I can post pictures of the updated project soon...in the meantime, here are a few pictures of the flower beds.