Saturday, November 30, 2013

Thankful November: Days 27-30

be thankful for the little things. In the end, the little things are what matter the most . ♥

Day 27: I am thankful for old & new traditions.
Day 28: I am thankful for a sweet daughter-in-law to be and her family.
Day 29: I am thankful for meeting new friends.
Day 30: I am thankful for another year of making new memories. I love looking back over the past year and seeing all that my family has been blessed with!


There is always, always, always something to be THANKFUL for!!!

Thanksgiving 2013

This was the year of new traditions. For the past 48 years, I've spent Thanksgiving with my family at home, but this year, we spent it in MD with Logan, Lindsey, & her family.



While I was sad that I wouldn't be carrying on my usual tradition again this year with Nathan, my parents, sister, nephew, and other family members, I was happy to spend it with Logan and his new family-to-be. Lindsey's brother and SIL, Robbie and Angela, could not have been more gracious hosts, and made us feel welcome immediately. They have the most gorgeous home, and the sweetest family.


Angela, Kate, Zach, & Robbie
Angela made the most delicious dinner....
I brought Asparagus Bundles and a jello salad to add to her huge spread.



pumpkin or pecan?????


Kate loves her "Uncle Lo". When she wasn't with her Mommy, she was hanging out with Logan. :O)



Lindsey & her friend Danielle (her maid of honor)

I brought the kids sticker books...they were a hit!!


 


After dinner: football, dessert, and looking through Angela's scrapbooks.







Their house is huge....and gorgeous.....& spotless!! :O) Angela is super organized, but their home is very comfy & lived in, very home-y!







LOL....this picture makes me smile. :O)

What a great day!
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On Wednesday, we met up with Nathan as he was headed home after getting off the boat. We were sad that he wasn't coming to Logan's for dinner, but he wanted to be home for Thanksgiving. After saying goodbye to Nathan, we had lunch at Quiznos, then did a little Christmas shopping. I ended up getting some great deals. Peter bought an early Christmas present.....

We waited for Lindsey to get off work, then Logan finally got home from work around 5:30. Lindsey and I made dinner and we all just sat around and got caught up. 
Peter and I got up early on Thanksgiving morning, cooked breakfast and watched the parade.

We headed over to Robbie and Angela's around 1:30 and didn't get home until 8:00!!
On Friday morning, we said goodbye to Lindsey early {she wanted to do some Black Friday shopping}. We went to Lowe's to get a tree, and to look at a few more things for the re-do. then we headed home. We were a little sad saying goodbye to Logan. It is so nice when we get a chance to spend a little time with him.
When we got back, we had dinner at Mom and Dad's with Julie, Derek, Nathan, & Kayla. We were a day late, but I was thankful to get together with them {and get to enjoy some of Mom's cooking....there is nothing like her dressing!!} :O)
 I am very thankful for my family!
I am so blessed!!  




 

let the decorating begin.....

tree shopping 2013

and that's the one!!!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Easy Thanksgiving Snack

I saw this Thanksgiving Snack idea on Pinterest and made a small batch to share. This is a great snack for your kid's playgroup, a classroom treat, or just a little something to hand out to the kids at your Thanksgiving gathering.


All you need for these "cornucopias" are Bugles and Runts candies.


I finally found the candy at Dollar Express!

I bought a package of clear bags at Walmart. I wasn't able to print out the cute tags that Shelly @ Cookies & Cups blog had used on her bags {my printer ink needs replacing!}, so I just tied the bags with raffia. I still think they turned out great. :O)

I took Marley and Lily a bag tonight, and I have a couple of bags for Lindsey's niece and nephew, who we'll be having Thanksgiving dinner with.
Due to bad weather coming in, we'll be heading to MD early in the morning. We'll spend a few days with Logan and Lindsey and have dinner at Robbie and Angela's {Lindsey's brother & SIL} new home. We'll be meeting up with Nathan before he heads home. He has an early crew change, but Logan has a bit of traveling to do before he gets home tomorrow evening. Julie will also be traveling home tomorrow. Praying for traveling mercies for all those who will be traveling during the holiday, especially with the weather forecast calling for such stormy weather.
Happy Thanksgiving!!!!

Thankful November: Day 26

Thankful November 2013

Day 26: The carpenter stopped by yesterday to get some measurements and talk about what we want done. I am so excited to get started on this little re-do project! He liked my ideas and also had some great input. I am very thankful to be able to do things to our home, not only for upkeep, but also to make it look nice. Just little things like adding a pretty paint color, or buying a new rug, make me very happy- I love our little home and I love making it feel home-y & pretty! :O)

Monday, November 25, 2013

Thankful November: Day 25

Take a look at this 'Thank You' Patriotic Garden Flag by Everything Doormats on #zulily today!
Thankful November 2013

Day 25: I am very thankful our town is hosting a special day for Wounded Warriors!

design on a dime....

While I loved the bright and airy look of the paint color I chose when redoing the craft room/office/den a few years ago, it never really fit in with the rest of the house. {It also was a very hard color to decorate around at Christmas.} I finally decided to give that room a new look, but wasn't sure what color to go with. Since it only takes less than a quart of paint to paint the room,  I decided to use the (3) FREE coupons for Valspar paint samples at Lowes that Mom gave me.
I ended up buying (1) extra can to make sure I had enough paint, making the total cost of repainting the room= $2.98. Peter thinks I'm ridiculously cheap, but I love getting a bargain! :O) The color choices were limited, but I ended up going with Cathedral Stone and I love it!!!
It's a combination of grey and beige, kinda taupe-y kinda grey....perfect! It covered in one coat, and I even had half of a container left over for future touch-ups. Peter ended up loving it too, and is starting to think that my budget projects aren't that bad after all! Here's an after pic, plus a few before pictures.
after:
***pardon the white summery curtains that I still have hanging, I'm working on buying some new ones!!:O)

Here are a few before pictures:

I loved these curtains, but changed to white curtains last summer.


I ended up painting the cabinet white a few months ago. It looks much better!!!



I love doing little re-do projects and I love doing them even more when I design on a dime!! 
*BTW.....the free Valspar paint samples came from magazines like Better Homes & Gardens. Thanks Mom!!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

dinner is in the.......freezer!

After making a few more freezer meals earlier this week- our freezer is FULL! I went through the freezer in the kitchen and the chest freezer in the shed and took inventory of all the meals I have on hand.
Here's the list:
(1) bag chicken taco soup
(1) bag beef stew
(1) bag teriyaki chicken
(1) bag pork & veggies
(2) bags chicken cacciatore
(2) bags sweet & sour meatballs
(1) pan sour cream noodle bake
(1) pan w/5 enchiladas
(1) bag orange chicken
(1) bag beef fajitas
(1) bag teriyaki pork chops
(1) bag cilantro lime chicken
(2) bags sausage & peppers
(1) bag w/4 twice baked potatoes

I love having these meals ready to go whenever I need them, but in a way I want to save them for when I'm super busy. I know they'll come in handy over the next month or so, while getting ready for the holidays and while the carpenter is here.
I made a few more new recipes earlier this week, here are the recipes:

Sausage & Peppers
{source: Ring Around the Rosies}

6 Italian sausage
2 green peppers- cut in strips
1 red pepper- cut in strips
1 red onion- sliced
4 cloves garlic- minced
2 cans Italian diced tomatoes
2 T. Italian seasoning

Split between (2) gallon size freezer bags.
Directions: Add a drizzle of olive oil- cook low for 6 hours. Serve over hot pasta or on French bread w/ mozzarella cheese.
(makes 2 bags)


Teriyaki Pork Chops
{source: Mommy's Fabulous Finds}
pork chops {I used a pkg. of 7 thin cut boneless}
2 cloves minced garlic
4 T. brown sugar
1/2 cup soy sauce
2/3 cup chicken broth
salt & pepper to taste
Sprinkle salt & pepper on chops and put in gallon Ziploc bag. In a small bowl mix together garlic, b. sugar, s. sauce, and broth {I doubled amounts from the original recipe}. Add to bag and place flat in freezer. Directions: thaw in fridge overnight. Cook on high 4-5 hours or low 6-7 hours.
(makes 1 bag)



I also made:
Chicken Cacciatore
{source: Ring Around the Rosies}
4-6 boneless chicken breasts
1 lg. pkg. button mushrooms (sliced)
2- 6 oz. cans tomato paste
2 T. Italian seasoning
4 cloves minced garlic

(makes 2 bags)
*2 cups chicken broth

Split between 2 gallon Ziploc bags. Seal, mix, lay flat. Directions: Add 1 cup chicken broth. Cook low 6-7 hours. Serve over hot pasta w/fresh parmesan.

Freezer Cooking #5
Freezer Cooking Review
Freezer Cooking #4
Freezer Cooking Review
Freezer Cooking Review
Freezer Cooking #3
Freezer Cooking #2
Freezer Cooking #1
Freezer Cooking, Make-Ahead Cooking

Thankful November: Day 24

A thankful heart is a happy heart
Thankful November 2013


Day 24: The sky was amazing yesterday! It's a wonder I didn't run into something on the way home, I couldn't keep my eyes off the clouds! I grabbed my camera as soon as I got home and got some beautiful pictures!!








WOW!!!! :O)

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Thankful November: Day 23

I am blessed quote via Carol's Country Sunshine on Facebook
Thankful November 2013

Day 23: I am very thankful for the Thanksgiving holiday. I love Thanksgiving! I love that special time that is set aside for being with all of my family. Growing up, we alternated Thanksgiving dinners between Mom & Dad's house & my aunts house. While Peter and I were dating, he always ate with my family on holidays. When we got married, our house was added to the rotation at Thanksgiving, then in later years, after Mom-Mom passed away, Mom took over Thanksgiving and I started hosting Christmas dinner. My sister and nephew always come home for Thanksgiving, and last year, my cousin and his family came in from Alabama to join us too.
Our holidays started to change when Logan got his job on the tugboat. Every other year, he misses the holidays, so I would cook an early Thanksgiving dinner for him before he returned to work. Then, when Logan moved away a few years ago, he started celebrating Thanksgiving with Lindsey and her family.
Things changed even more this year when Nathan joined the world of tugging. When he first got the job, he was on opposite tours from Logan, so this meant he would miss Thanksgiving this year. Logan and Lindsey invited us to join her family for Thanksgiving and we thought that this year was a good year to start some new traditions with Logan and his new family to-be.
About a month ago, Nathan's schedule was changed and now he and Logan will both be home for Thanksgiving. We will still be joining Logan & Lindsey, but Nathan decided to stay home and eat with Kayla {then dessert & football @ Gran & Pop's}.
So, this will be a year of change. This will be the first time I've ever spent Thanksgiving away from home. It will be very weird not being in the kitchen with Mom this year and I hate that we won't be there with Nathan and the family.  I wish I could be two places at once, but of course, that's not possible. But, I don't want to let Logan and Lindsey down either and they seem very excited about us coming and spending it with both of them and her family.

I feel very fortunate and thankful though, that I actually get to spend several days with most of my family. My cousin and his family are coming again the year. They arrive on Tuesday, so I'll get to visit with them. Then, we'll spend Wednesday and Thursday with Lindsey and Logan, and on Friday, we get to do a "left-overs" Thanksgiving with Nathan, Julie, Derek, Mom and Dad. So....I guess I am extra blessed this year, I get to share one of my favorite holidays with my family all week long!! :O)

The Simple Woman's Day Book: November

November 2013

Outside my window..... It's feelin' very fall-y! Looks like some blustery weather headed our way according to this mornings forecast. Brrrrrr!!!

I am thinking.... that I really need to start making plans for Christmas and also need to start ordering for the re-do {living room/our bedroom}. The carpenter plans to start the Monday after Christmas!

I am thankful....for  my wonderful family!!


In the kitchen....I've been doing a little more freezer cooking this week!! I'll be doing a separate post on this. For today, we are having steaks on the grill.

I am wearing....jeans, a green Aeropostale tee, & my grey slippers.

I am creating....lots of plans for the little re-do project. Peter and I had a chance to look around Lowes and we finally agreed decided on a few things. Wide, flat moulding and board & batten! :O) The board & batten will go all the way to the ceiling in the living room {with the strips farther apart than in this picture}, but will be 3/4 of the way up in the bedroom, and an entire wall of b&b behind the bed. We are still working on ideas for the built-ins for the tv, bookcases., which I'll post about soon.



I am looking forward to....Thanksgiving!!!!


Around the house....getting rid of the blue walls in the den! I'm going DARK! I chose a {greige}color this time. The picture doesn't look like it but, it turned out great....post to follow!


A favorite quote of the day....

chalkboard thanksgiving quote
One of my favorite things....I love lanterns so I just had to buy this one! Only $1.99 @ Kohl's. I'm thinking about painting it bright red to add to my Christmas mantel.


Upcoming plans....Sunday: church & football...Monday & Tuesday: cleaning, organizing, deciding on and ordering curtains, etc., mani appt., then away for Thanksgiving on Wednesday p.m. until Friday a.m.....

Friday, November 22, 2013

sunrise at the beach.....

sounds like I'm missing something great! maybe I should consider getting up earlier!! :O)
Peter woke me up very early on Friday morning. At first, I thought, "hey, we're on vacation".....but then I looked outside......it was breathtaking!