Friday, October 24, 2014

What's For Sunday Dinner?

Arby's!

Since it will be Miss Sally's birthday, she wanted to order out  some Arby's roast beef sandwiches.  Sounds good to me ;)

And for dessert?

Birthday cake from Market Street.

She wants to take  cupcakes to  youth group Sunday night to celebrate with her friends, so we decided that we will be making Black Bottom Cupcakes.



Chocolate cupcakes with a cream cheese, chocolate chip filling baked in the middle.

The first time I ever sank my choppers into one of these was in 1995.  I was  teaching 6th grade and a student's grandmother brought these in for her birthday celebration.  I got the recipe from her... 19 years ago.   (Wow!  I feel old!)

 Anyone else have a birthday this weekend?

Have a great weekend and a blessed Sunday!

~  Patty  ~

Thursday, October 23, 2014

TBT - First Halloween in Texas


It was also our first Halloween without winter coats!!

(Every year, that is still a surreal feeling...walking around without coats on Halloween.)

~  Patty  ~

Crock Pot Creamy Chicken & Rice

Wednesdays are my crock pot meal days since there is swim team practice and I have to teach Confirmation class those days.

Do you have a particular crock pot day?

This was a brand new one I tried and it was SO awesome!!!  My family asked that this recipe replace  the old chicken and rice casserole recipe I've used for years.

Crock Pot Creamy Chicken and Rice


Ingredients:

4-5 chicken breasts
2 cans cream of chicken soup
2 cups water
2 cups baby carrots (*I put in more)
3 celery stalks, chopped
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
2 tsp Paprika
1/2 TBSP minced garlic
2 tsp garlic salt
Black pepper, to taste
A dash of dill weed
1 cup instant brown rice (*I made real rice and cooked it separately.)

Direction:

1.  Place your chicken breasts into the bottom of the crock.

2.  In a separate bowl, mix up all the other ingredients, except for the rice, to create a chunky, creamy sauce.  Pour this over the chicken in the crock.

3.  Cover and cook on High for 4-6 hours.



4.  Shred the chicken and add the cup of rice.  Cook covered for an additional hour.  (Since I cooked my real rice separately, I added it into the crock pot once the rice was cooked.)  

This is almost like the consistency of a stew.  I bet noodles would be a good substitute, too!

Enjoy!

Patty

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

A Quiet Week - Daybook Post

Outside my window ~

Sunshine, blue skies, and low 80's.  (Up to 87 by Saturday).  I wish our pool was still open...


I am thankful for ~

Daughters who help with laundry and iron clothes.

Husbands who come home and make dinner when I'm still homeschooling.

Having good neighbors.

Blue skies and sunshine.


From the school room ~


Field Trip rescheduled

I had organized a home school field trip to the Perot Museum of Nature and Science, which is located right in downtown Dallas.  After the second nurse was confirmed to have Ebola last week, the majority of moms decided it would be best to cancel if not reschedule.

Considering this Ebola mess, the museum allowed us to reschedule till late April, 2015.  No one lost out on their money.


Quarter 2 book reports 

Miss Ester (grade 8) -  The Hidden Treasure of Glaston



Miss Mabel (grade 6) - The Winged Watchman


Stan the man (grade 3) - Padre Pio


Book Analysis

Miss Sally (Sophomore) - The Prince and the Pauper, by Mark Twain



From the kitchen ~

Thinking about starting my menu.  Just thinking :)

Since it is going to be close to 90 this weekend, I'm going to keep things on the cooler side.


What I am reading ~

Since I read a religious book last time, I'm switching gears  this time around.

The Kitchen House


My friend, Jen, recommended it, and it had a some good reviews online as well.


What I am praying for ~

* The victims of Ebola, especially the two nurses who had been diagnosed after taking care of Mr. Duncan.

* For our home school.  That we, as a family, may continue to make great strides in our school year.

* For my husband who continues to work so hard in order to provide for our family and our vocation of homeschooling.

* For all those who have asked me to pray for them.


Around my house ~

Shoring up our plans for trick or treating and the All Saints party.


Coming down the pike this week ~

*Teach Confirmation class on Wednesday

*One child has a doctor appointment on Friday (downtown Dallas...rush hour traffic...yuck.)

*Troops of St. George camp out for the boys

* Miss Sally's birthday


What I am listening to ~

The big girls talking as they do the dinner dishes.  Stan the man helping David outside with some yard work.

A picture to share ~


David and Miss Mabel having a fireside chat this past Sunday evening.


Have a great week!

~  Patty ~

Monday, October 20, 2014

Master Bath Vanity - Putting It Back Together (Part 3)

The granite & glass guys are coming today to install our replacement top and sink, and install our vanity mirror.

It has been a looong month since I posted  our remodeling hiccup.

I realized I never showed you the completed vanity pictures.  David did such a BEAUTIFUL job.  I requested drawers for storage, and boy! did he give me the drawers.  Check it out ...


(That picture above also give you a clear image of how off center the sink hole was cut.




I'm able to store our towels in that bottom middle drawer.





Those are 3" tab pulls that we purchased through a kitchen & bath showroom.  




(He fit the top two middle boxes to fit around the plumbing, gaining as much storage space as possible.)

We also purchased our new light bar.


It is a George Kovacs brand that we ordered through the same kitchen & bath store where we purchased the chrome pulls.


We are almost done.  Almost. Done.

Have to admit, I'm a little anxious about the replacement job today.  I made sure that they scheduled it on David's day off when he can be present to see how they will be cutting the old granite off of his vanity.  That part makes me nervous since he worked so hard on it.

Until then...

~  Patty  ~

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Second Chances

Ever since we found out that we were expecting Miss Clementine, the phrase 'second chance' has repeatedly come to mind.  I've cherished so many second chances: newborn noises, baptismal gown and chrism oil, the smell of Dreft baby detergent, all the chubby fat and rolls, hugs from a little one's arms wrapped tightly around my neck as well as I love you's, bedtime stories, bath time fun, and funny toddler-sayings.

Speaking of toddler sayings, here's one for you:

Miss C. on the potty - "Mama, I'm making....(grunt)...poo!  It's a dinosaur! ...(3 second pause)... Oh no!  The dinosaur just broke!"

That child keeps me in stitches.

I think one of the most memorable 'second chance' moments was when David and I left for the hospital in the wee hours of that January morning.  There we were,  two, nervous 43 years olds, heading to the hospital to have a baby after all those years.

Our second chance.



With second chances comes another train of thought, 'If I only knew then what I know now.'  Ha ha!  That one plays through my mind all the time.  I thank God for the advantage He gave me to deal with motherhood this time around.  My confidence has been so much higher and more relaxed.  The stress that society places on new or young parents is downright horrible.  I feel bad for new parents.

When my oldest two were toddlers, I recall feeling the mounting  pressure of needing to 'keep up with the Jones'.  There's another phrase for you, and not a positive one at that.  (Sometimes, I'd succumb to it.)   Around that time, Little Tikes was at its height in popularity and every "good" parent would purchase the biggest and newest Little Tikes toy available on the market.  No matter the cost.  I tried to find our Little Tikes items at garage sales and was happy that my husband kept tight purse strings.  He NEVER caved to pressure like that.  (And he knew I would.)

Which leads me to my next second chance.

Reshaping gift giving.


I look forward to making some changes with Miss Clementine at this age especially with the season of gift giving approaching quickly.  She will be over 2 1/2 years old when Christmas arrives and even quicker at picking up on things.  I am really making a conscience effort to set an appropriate yet meaningful tone.  No.  I don't believe I made mistakes with the older kids when it comes to gifts, it is just that I want to fine tune things a bit.  A second chance.



Our society, as a whole,  is a materialistic one. Toys come and go so quickly.  They are played with for maybe one afternoon before being considered boring and then tossed onto a junk pile or broken into pieces.  Unappreciated. Okay.  I'm being a bit sarcastic, but you get the idea.

I want to pick out gifts  that will be used, cherished, loved, and appreciated like, forever (if forever is even possible.)  She is entering a fun age, and  I am really looking forward to her experience this year.  I think it will be a battery free Christmas.  (Think pretend play and make believe!)

I love this second chances thing!

~  Patty  ~

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