Monday, July 28, 2008

Ok - Happy Birthday Ann K.

Ok, Happy birthday AnnaK! My sister wished AnnaK a happy birthday on her blog...and AnnK finally left a comment. I know AnnaK reads my blog, but never leaves a comment. I love comments, so if you read my blog be gracious and leave me a comment, so I can see who is out there reading it!!!! So, Happy Birthday AnnK - for the third time.....and please leave me a comment, so I can be rest assured that you got your birthday wishes! Love, Liz

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Other People's Junk

I went to a tag sale today. Now, I don't usually go to tag sales...I have so much stuff in my house already, and I don't like other people's junk. But, my friend Christine convinced me to go. It was at this great farm, Luscroft Farm, here in town. I never knew about this farm, it's a farm with a huge house, people around here call it "the mansion". Anyway, Christine wanted me to look at this bread machine to see if it was worth the $7.00 - yep, $7.00 - just buy the bread maker already, and if it's not worth it, then chuck it....but yes I know $7.00 is $7.00! My bread machine was about $60.00, $7.00 - it can't go wrong. So we get there, and the sale is in the huge red barn. It was so cute and rustic, everything I am into these days, thanks to my sister's "primitive" taste...anyway, the barn was full of "other's people junk". But it was really nice junk. I bought so much nice "junk" and I am really pleased. I only spent about $13.00, and I am so happy with my stuff. I bought a fruitpunch bowl, with 10's such a nice bowl for only $4.00. 6 steak knives (yes we needed steak knives even though we never eat steak around here!) an old fashion potato masher (one like my mother's), an old cake server, a whisk, an automatic ice tea brewer (my friend Christine got the same one, but in red - I got the blue, yuk!), 2 large Pyrex pie plates, they were .50 cents each!!! (the ones like my mother makes her pies in) 2 very large Corningware casserole dishes....I mean really large is 9x13 - great for lasagna and the other is a very deep dutch oven, great for stews, sausage and peppers, meatballs, for only $1.00 each!!! I got a pretty rustic candle holder for jar candles...Lois you would love it. And a pretty rustic tin (primitive) hurricane candle holder for only .25 cents. Becca and Davey mostly got free stuff...they were giving away children's books and tapes. Davey got a pair of red boxing gloves already in its own unopened package....he was thrilled....picture will come soon. So, anyway, I bought a lot of nice things for very cheap! Christine never got the bread machine...I think she thought it was too much money. But hey, I got a lot of nice things. Where's the next tag sale? I'm hooked!!!! And Christine...I'm making pizza tonight....making the dough right in my very own bread machine, so easy, and then I'm gonna make cinnamon raisin bread for tomorrow's you wish you got that bread machine, don't ya!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Five Months Until Christmas!

Yes, just had to remind you all that we have 5 months until Christmas Day! I know, you don't want to think about Christmas. I don't want to think about Christmas, cause I am enjoying my summer so much this year. But, Christmas will be here before we know it. We usually don't start our shopping until December. We're not like most people who do their shopping the day or week after Christmas. We wait until after Thanksgiving, and get started. Yes, I do believe it's harder that way, buying everything in one shopping spree, but that's the way we have always done it. Later.....

Glorious Zucchini

Well, I thought I would show you my flower gardens, and my veggie garden. I love gardening, and I think when you work on your gardens, they really pay off, and look beautiful! When we moved into this house 8 years ago, there was no landscaping. Only these big evergreen bushes, and we got rid of them once we moved in. So, we had to start from scratch. Over the years, it's been difficult, cause let's face it, landscaping is expensive. So, the first year I planted the black-eyed susans, and they have spread to these beautiful glorious flowers everywhere. I transplanted some to the other side of the garden, and they have gotten so big, too. Later on in August, I'm going to do more transplanting with them, and encouraged them to grow there as well. This year we planted the big "grass" bushes in the front too...they look so pretty, and natural. So, we are very happy with our gardens, the hard work and money has really paid off.

We have gotten so many zucchini already, they are delicious! The tomatoes aren't doing very well, I think I have a bug in them, and must spray them tonight, but it's ok, cause we usually don't get red tomatoes until August or so. We've already picked 2 peppers from the pepper plants, and about 5 cucumbers from the cucumber plants. We've had lettuce now for the past 2 months, we just pick the leaves, and the leave grow back! I like the Bib and Roman the best. My marigolds in the front aren't doing well at all. About 1 month ago, I sprayed Round-Up on the edgers around the garden, and the marigolds got the after-splash from it. They all died. So I went to the garden center and bought more for that area.....they died as well...I guess they were overgrown since the season for buying flowers was about over...they were a picked-over flat. Anyway, those are gone, I pulled them all up as well, and last night I put more marigolds in from the side garden that I started from seed in the late spring. I hope these take. I will water them in morning and at night, hoping they will live! I have a wonderful Zucchini Pie recipe, that I have posted. My family loves it. When I was a little girl, my mom always made this delicious zucchini pie, using pie crust and it was like a turnover. Mom made it all the time, and we just loved it. This recipe is similar to it, but doesn't have the added pie crust. I do miss the pie crust, and will make it like that some day when I have the time. Here's the recipe.

Zucchini Pie
3 cups of zucchini grated or sliced (I like it better sliced very thin)
1 cup Romano or parm. cheese
1 cup Bisquick or jiffy baking mix
1/2 cup oil (I use canola it's better for you than veggie oil)
4 eggs beaten
1 tsp. pepper/parsley, oregano
2 tsp. salt (make sure it's well seasoned)
1 small onion chopped

Mix all ingredients together, pour into a greased pie plate, or casserole dish, and bake for 45mins on 350. Delicious!!!!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Recipes - Corn Spoon Bread

More recipes - my friend Christine made this Corn Spoon Bread for one of our parties. It's not like corn's moist and delicious! So, we were having friends over this past Tuesday, and I wanted to make the spoon bread. I went on the internet and found the recipe. It called for Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix. I usually have that mix in my pantry (I have a very well stocked pantry, and I think every cook should) so I had an idea, I bet I can find a clone to that Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix somewhere on the internet. Yes, I did!!! It was so easy to make, now I never have to buy that Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix again. Yes, I know it's cheap...but I will always have the ingredients here at home, and will save some money. Ok here is the recipe for the clone, and for the spoon bread. Enjoy!

Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix Clone
2/3 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup corn meal
3 tbs sugar
1 tbs baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
2 tbs vegetable oil
Sometimes a recipe will call for a box of Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix. Here's the clone recipe you can make at home. 1.5 cups mix is equal to one 8.5 ounce box of Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix.

Combine flour, corn meal, sugar, baking powder and salt. Mix well with a whisk. Whisk in veggie oil and mix until dry mixture is smooth and lumps are gone. This is the stuff that is actually in the box. If you want to make muffins, you just add 1 egg and 1/3 cup milk...stir until combined, fill muffin tins, and bake 15 -20 min.

Sour Cream Corn-Spoon Bread
1 box Jiffy Corn Muffin Mix (or the recipe above without the egg and milk)
1 (8oz) can cream corn
1 cup sour cream
2 eggs lightly beaten
1/2 cup oil or melted butter(I used the butter)
1/2 tsp. salt
Beat eggs and butter, add salt, and corn bread mix. Mix in corn and sour cream. Pour into casserole dish and bake 35 minutes on 350. Bread is done when a toothpick comes out clean when inserted in center. Enjoy!!!

Recipes - Lentil Soup

Hi, well I promised to post some recipes. I do love to cook. I would say that cooking is one of my passions. I do enjoy a good meal, and my family loves my cooking. I love it when Becca comes home from school, and says "oh what's that smell? What are we having for dinner?" I was like that with my mom when I was a little girl. Mom cooked a nice dinner every night, and it was delicious! So, I have been cooking a nice meal for my family almost every night for the past 20 years of marriage. Tonight we're having Lentil Soup....ok so you think lentil soup? Yes, lentil soup!!! It's delicious, nutritious, and very hearty. I make it like a stew. My Dad always LOVED my lentil soup, and I would make it for him a lot. I would make brown rice, and put that in the bottom of the bowl first and then fill the bowl with the soup. Give it a try and enjoy!

Lentil Soup
1 bag green lentils
1 large onion diced
2 starks celery diced
1 large carrot diced
1 whole (Hillshire Farm) link of kielbasi cut in small pieces
garlic minced - about 1 clove
salt and pepper to taste (we like it very well seasoned)
1 bay leaf
3 tsp. beef bouillon
1/2 small can tomato paste
About 5 cups of water

Rinse the lentils you don't have to soak them overnight. In a large pot saute the onions, celery, onions and garlic until soft, add salt and pepper. Add the kielbasi and then the lentils. Saute for about 3 more minutes. Add the water, beef bouillon, bay leaf, and tomato paste. Stir cook over low heat for about 5 hours or so...or after sauteing the veggies add everything to a crock pot and cook on high for 5 hours or so.. Serve over cooked brown or white rice - Enjoy!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Missing Dad

Ok, so for those of you who are bored with me writing about my Dad, I'm not sorry. I've been going through this very hard time in my life, and writing about it, seems to help a lot. Writing about "stuff" here in my blog helps me cope with it all. I'm not a "dark" person, I'm very "light", and cheerful. I love my days here at home with my family, but I too get sad, especially when I think about my Dad. So, I miss my dad. I really do. Life just isn't the same without him. Dad use to frustrate me so, when he was here. He would come over, and just seem to get into everyone way, cause he could hardly see. He was always complaining about something, never wanted to help himself. Not to mention the frustration he put on mom all the time. I did think life without him would be a little easier for all of us, he would be put out of his misery, and isn't easier without him. I think life is harder without my dad. I miss him calling me....I can still hear his voice on the phone, still strong, when his body was so weak, and this was before his accident. When I go to my Mom's new home, for me it's very sad...hard to be there, cause Dad isn't there. When Mom comes here, it's difficult for me, cause Dad isn't here with her. The kids seem fine with it all, but Perdie my dog looks for "Opa" when Mom comes. When the car comes down the block, Perdie runs out the door, right to my Dad's side of the car, but he's not there. Perdie is SAD!!! For me it's very sad. I don't tell Mom this, cause I don't think she would understand, and she would get very hurt. There was no question about it, I loved and respected my Dad, but it was hard these past few years with him not doing very well. Yesterday in church, we sang one of Dad's favorite songs, it was an old chorus...."Glorify thy name...Jesus we love you, we praise you, we adore you, glorify thy name in all the earth...."We use to sing that song all the time in our old church were Dad was the pastor. It just brought back so many memories for me......I started crying, again.....hard for me to hold back these tears lately. I look up into the sky, and know Dad is up with the Lord, not even missing us....he's enjoying his new body with our Lord and Saviour. Mom said to me, I wonder if Daddy missed her? I was surprised that she even said that, I said no, he is so happy just being up in heaven, he isn't thinking about us. It's sad, but very more pain, suffering, crying in heaven, only happiness, and good things. I miss Daddy, that's all I can say.

Monday, July 14, 2008

A Wonderful Day - but it didn't start that way!

We had such a wonderful day yesterday here at home. We had our Shepherding group over....15 adults, 19 children!!! Yes, it was a big crowd. Now, I was a worry wort about having them over. Yes, I agreed to host our Shepherding group months ago, but didn't realize all the people who would come - thinking most of them would be away on vacation. So, all week long I was stressing myself out. I didn't really have much to do, everyone was bringing food, my hubby and I did the hamburgers, hotdogs (thanks hubby - my master barbeque man) rolls, fixin's, and then I made a orzo pasta salad, and a yummie (I might add) homemade mac and cheese - so cheesy it was delicious!!!! We had so much food, but hey, you gotta have a lot of food for all those people!!! We had a blast! I love our Shepherding group. We are a close knit of friends, and we all get along so well, and we share about the Lord, and spend a time in prayer....not to mention all the kids love playing together. Hubby and I have been in this group for only 1 year.....but they have all shown us such love - I feel like they are all a part of my family. Anyway, with the preparation on Sat, it went really well...the grass was mowed, weeded, and everything looked so pretty. We got a pop-up tent for the kids, put it down off the deck for the kids to eat under. So everything on Saturday went really well, and I even got some time in the pool with my family. We went to bed early, because we all would have to wake up early for early service at church......then I heard it, the cry from Davey...."Mommy, my room is dark!!!" What? Why is the whole house dark? Yes it was nighttime, but we always have a nite-lite on in Davey's room.....yes, you guessed it, the power was out! Now living here, in this town, the power seems to go out all the time. The last power outage was in February, and it was a good reason, an ice storm...and it went back on only after a couple of hours, but tonight nothing, no storm, no wind. So, my worse fear - the power was out, and we're having like 35 people here in several hours. So, I prayed and asked the Lord to help my anxiety - and then immediately called the customer service of our electric company to inform them....they said it was a "small outage" since hardly anyone was calling...yeah right!!! Couldn't sleep the house was way too warm. Went into the living room opened all the windows and lay on the sofa - listening for the crew to come. Didn't hear anything. So I just lay there, praying and worrying about my "tomorrow". What happened was a underground cable broke, and a crew had to come and dig up the ground and then fix the cable - yep, a long job ahead of them. So, by 5am still no electric. Now this has happend 4 times already....seems like all our underground cables are in bad shape, and over the past 4 years, a cable has would think they would fix the problem, but no!!! So, at 5am I couldn't take it any longer, I got dressed, got in the car and drove down the block where the men were working, and pleaded with them to hurry and fix the problem and that at 12:30 I'm having 35 people over for a party......I guess I should have brought them coffee and donuts, but that would have slowed them down. They understood, and said they are working on it, they were very nice. So, I went back home, all peeved and upset, worrying my heart crazy....tried to sleep but couldn't, prayed for the Lord to calm my fears, and my heart. At 7am I decided to call my friend Cindy, the leader of our Shepherding group, to ask if we could have the party at her house, if the power doesn't go back on by 12pm or so.....wouldn't you know, but right then when I was talking to her, the power goes back on!!!! What a relief!!! We jump in the shower, I then vacuum all the dog hair up, we prepare more for the day, I water my flowers outside, get the kids up, get ready, run out the door for Sunday School. So all in all everything worked out terrific...a good time was had by all. And the Lord answered my prayer about the power.

Thank you Lord for answering my prayer, and allowing the power to go back on, so our Shepherding group could enjoy a day to share the good things You have done for us....and for our time in prayer and sharing Your loving, caring awesome power - and taking care of "my tomorrows"!!!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

A Day at the Lake

Hello everyone - well don't worry this will be a very light blog - I know I've been venting and a little dark lately. But yesterday we went to this great lake right by my sister's house.....and right by my Mom's new home. Now, I don't care for lakes, but this lake is so clean, you can see your toes even when you're up to your chin in the water. There's no seaweed, and hardly any rocks. The beach has nice sand....a little poop from the birds too, but I, being the great Mom I am, cleaned it all up in our little spot. We took along our nephew, Michael, my sister's son. Michael is 11 just like Becca, and they play, and get along perfectly! Actually, I think Becca wore Michael out! HA! But all in all the day was a blast, the weather was nice....we did have big clouds, and it did get chilly and windy a little, but then the sun would pop out, and it got so hot, and in the water we all went! Davey loved playing in the sand, building sand castle's with his Daddy, and then go swimming. He's doing so well, not afraid of the water like he was last year. Becca, well she's a the water the whole time looking for "stuff". Last year when we went she found a cell phone, big gold earrings, and shells. The waves were great, even though it was a lake, the motor boats made these great waves....little waves I might add. Ok, enjoy the pictures. Enjoy today!