Sunday, February 28, 2016

Meet Charlie Black

Friends, this is our neighbor, Charlie Black.

Miss Clementine named him, but we really have no idea what his real name is!

Charlie Black likes to chew holes in the fence.  This is Charlie's third hole.

We thinks Charlie wants to hang out with us??

Shortly after I snapped these photos, David boarded up this hole after Charlie Black had his head and left shoulder through it.

Sorry, Charlie.

His owner?

The kids refer to him as O'Hare, (The Lorax, Dr. Seuss), because he looks and behaves just like O'Hare.

BTW, we share the fence line with O'Hare and he has no interest in repairing it except for the cobbled up approach.

~  Patty  ~

Crock Pot Chicken and Angel Hair Pasta

My little man just loves angel hair pasta.   When he requested it on the menu I looked up and found this new recipe.  It is delicious and easy to put together in the crock pot.

Crock Pot Chicken and Angel Hair Pasta


2-4 boneless chicken breasts (I cut mine in half.)
1 packet Italian dressing mix (I like to use Good Seasons.)
4 oz cream cheese
3 Tbsp butter, melted
1 small can cream of chicken soup
3/4 cup of white wine (or chicken broth)
angel hair pasta (prepare according to package directions when chicken is done.)


Place chicken in crock pot.  Combine Italian dressing mix, cream cheese, butter, soup, and broth.  Pour over chicken.  Turn crock pot only for 8 hours.  Serve over cooked angel hair pasta.

I found the recipe on


~  Patty  ~

Saturday, February 27, 2016

What's for Sunday Dinner?

Does anyone else ever put their crock pot outside while cooking in it?  To avoid the really strong smells that linger in your house?

I love walking out to my itty bitty patio when the crock is plugged in out there, it smells mighty delicious!

I am trying a new crock pot recipe today, an angel hair pasta recipe.  I think it's going to be blog-worthy.

For Sunday dinner though, I'm making going crock pot again, this time  Crock Pot Pepper Steak, (recipe here).

For dessert, the kids wanted Texas Sheet Cake, (recipe here).

Here's wishing you a wonderful rest of your weekend and a blessed Sunday!

~  Patty  ~

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Storage:: Another Cool Space-Saving Gadget

Remember the photo album storage project I worked on?  The one with the really excellent storage cases?

That was actually the latter part of a "patty-tizing moment".  You know, just like in, When You Give a Mouse a Cookie, moment?

Rewinding a bit, the school/game closet upstairs is, kind of, sorta, a mini walk-in closet.

That closet had toys on the top shelves that were never being played with.  Little People  (Fisher Price) toys; airport, railroad station, farm, castle.  They really needed to go to a family that would love 'em up.  Big time.

So I found a home that had four boys.  Score!

"Nope.  No cash for them, just please pick them up ASAP."  (When I make a decision in a that state of mind there's no turning back ;)

And yes, I had to go stealth since Miss Clementine would have paid a ransom for them even though she never played with them.  You know what I'm talking about.

Next up was a bee in my bonnet I've been living with for going on 9 years.

Gift wrapping stuff in my living room closet.  Junk.  Mess. Clutter.  Disarray.  Gift wrap.

I came across this on The Container Store (while looking for photo storage cases).

I've seen these before, but when I saw it online that moment it was like bingo. That's it. Free Your Mind.

I threw out all the hundreds of gift bags (that I just knew I'd use someday, not), rolls of wrap that had just "this much" left on them, damaged and bent up bows, little to nothing rolls of curling ribbon.  Free Your Mind.

Stuff.  (Why do we have so much stuff??)

I kept only what I needed.

This container holds my gift wrap bows, curling ribbon, rolls of gift wrap, tissue paper, small boxes, boxes, and gift bags...all the stuff I need in a neat and orderly, tucked away fashion.

It is now perched on top of a shelf where the Little People hung out, out of the way.

And more of our unused school books/ materials sit on the opposite side, out of the way.

By the way, I'd post a link to The Container Store page, but I don't think they sell this item anymore because I couldn't find it on the website. ??

Between the cleaning out of those two closets and ridding myself of unused "stuff", there's no more cringing when I walk into them.

Very freeing, people.  Very freeing.

~  Patty  ~

Monday, February 22, 2016

Marching On - Daybook Post

Outside my window ~

It's hard to believe that this is the last full week of February!  Our winter has been anything but winter.   We cherish this time of year since our summers temps can be so brutal.

Daffodils are in full bloom.  Tulips are coming up.  Trees are budding.

The ice cream truck comes playing a merry tune each evening (right at dinner time of course.  Ha ha!)

I am thankful for ~

* waking up another day
* my faith
* the sound of mocking birds preparing for mating season
* the smell of spring air

What we are reading ~

I found this.

Adorbs!  Miss Clementine will be making a lion face for art this week ;)

From the school room ~

* Stan the man aced his math, the first time in quite some time.  Perhaps his new eye glasses made the difference?

(He's been in eye glasses for what seems his entire life.  Wondering what biological side he inherited his bad eye site from prompts a great adoption talk.)

* SAT prep

* Religion: Baptism Birthday for Miss Clementine

We gave her a St. Ann with baby Mary peg doll.  This precious set was found on Etsy, here.

I am praying for ~

* the many intentions of others

* for our country

* my Confirmation class

Around the house ~

All the above sums it up :)

From the kitchen ~

Looking forward to trying a new recipe (Grilled Cheese Croutons) to add to our delicious Cream of Tomato Soup!

I am listening to ~

The dishwasher running and the washing machine in its spin cycle.  Thank God for modern appliances!!

Coming down the pike this week ~

* Monday - First Reconciliation for my Confirmation students. (13 of my students are technically RCIC students.)

* Tuesday & Wednesday - Dental check ups for all the kids! (Miss Sally & Ester are old enough to go on their own now.  Woo Hoo!)

* Wednesday - Confirmation class

* Thursday - fingerprinting appointment for my LTC

* Friday - Stations of the Cross and Fish Fry at church

* Saturday - Teen party for the older two

A last photo to share ~

My Autumn Sage is blooming from the warm winter sun.  Crazy.

Here's wishing all a wonderful week ahead!

~  Patty  ~

Saturday, February 20, 2016

What's for Sunday Dinner?

Any big plans for the weekend?

My kids are hanging out with their friends (some here, some there), and Miss Clementine has a Princesses-themed birthday party to attend.  Other than that, we will be home just hanging out.

I plan on making a Crock Pot Italian Beef dinner with mashed potatoes and steamed green beans.  (Recipe here)


For dessert, I'll have one of the girls make up a batch of Butter Bars. (Recipe here)

Last night, we watched the International Space Station fly right over our town.  It's the size of a football field and looks like a big light moving quickly (not a  blinking).  Tonight it is suppose to fly over twice, but there's likely to be some heavy cloud coverage so the visibility of it will be very low if anything.  (You can find the flight info on the NASA website.)

Have a great weekend and a blessed Sunday!

~  Patty  ~

Thursday, February 18, 2016


It's been a long time since I took some photos of Miss Ester and Penny, so I snapped these from one afternoon last week. (Penelope is boarded about 15 miles from where we live.)

Penny is getting over a cold, so Miss Ester didn't saddle her.

(Photo credit: Miss Ester)

Best buddies.

"Sometimes holding a nose is better than holding a hand."  -author unknown

~  Patty  ~

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Mid-February - Daybook Post

Outside my window ~

Our maple tree is full of leaf buds.

I am thankful for ~

* blue skies and warm sunshine

* my husband (I love him so much!)

What we are reading ~

This is SO adorable with the words set to the song, The Itsy Bitsy Spider.

It is the last winter-themed book I added to our book basket this year.

I pulled out our Lent Book / CD/ DVD bin.

There's something for everyone in our family inside the Lent bin!  For a look inside, you can click on this link.

I also pulled out our collection of books celebrating the Feast of St. Valentine.  Click here if you are  interested.

From the school room ~

* Stan the man is almost finished studying the Colonial Period in history.  I purchased the Liberty Kids series (from PBS) as a supplement.  He LOVES it!

* For St. Valentine's day, our homeschool group took valentines and cookies to a local nursing home.  The kids and adults visited with the residents for awhile.  (Pure sweetness!)

I am praying for ~

* three friends who are trying to sell their houses

* a fruitful Lent

* my children, from head to toe

* my Confirmation students

* all those who have asked me to pray for them

* for the repose of the soul of Justice Scalia (and our country)

Around the house ~

* We had the clash of the Snowmen / St. Valentine's decorations versus Lent.

(The purple chain is Stan and Miss Mabel's sacrifice chain, one link for each day.)

I usually strip my house of most decorations during Lent, trying to bring the Liturgical year into our home.  (Have you noticed how bare your Catholic church is right now?)  There's really is no right or wrong way.

* This happened.

After a 9 hours class, written exam, and live fire exam, I passed.

These lovely ladies (2 of them are fellow homeschooling moms) joined me for the day, and I'm so glad!

And guess what?  I signed up for yet another training course.

Around the kitchen ~

After the nursing home visit, we treated the kids to St. Valentine's dinner out, a real treat in our house!

I am listening to ~

The fart fan (a.k.a. bathroom vent/fan) running.  It runs CONSTANTLY!  Seriously.

Coming down the pike this week ~

Sunday - St. Valentine's day - nursing home visit - dinner out

Wednesday - eye appointments, ballet for Miss Clementine, Confirmation class

Thursday - Miss Clementine's Baptism birthday

A last photo to share ~

That, there, is no pussy cat.  It is a bobcat sitting right outside my friend's backdoor.

Have a fantastic week, folks!!

Happy St. Valentine's Day!!

~  Patty  ~


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