Monday, September 14, 2009


Delicious thick chowder for those cooler days that are surely coming, very easy too!
Chicken Chowder

2 cups cooked chicken cut up
1 can cream of potato soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 11 oz can Mexican corn
1 can rotel
1 ½ cup milk
1 cup chicken broth
1 ½ to 2 cups cheese

Mix first 7 ingredients and cook for 7 to 8 minutes until warmed and remove from heat and add cheese and mix until melted. Can be topped with sliced green onions.

So thankful today was greeted by a downpour about 4 a.m. but now the sun is shining brightly! I think we may be in for more rain later today but everything is green and beautiful and the grass is freshly mowed.

Friday, September 11, 2009

A Week Full of Blessings and Surprises!

This is truly a week full of blessings and surprises! I turned 50 on Monday and Saturday night was totally surprised with a party full of family, friends and loads of fun! Casey was able to come after telling me for a full month that she wouldn't be home for Labor Day. My son and his three children were there. Loads of family and friends were there. I can not believe that so many knew and not one leaked the surprise to me! So now I am 50, no longer middle aged I wouldn't think since few live to be 100 so I guess that makes me old? Doesn't matter, as one friend says, I am now 50, I am who I am and comfortable with it and don't care what anyone else thinks! That's me!
Then on Tuesday Steve had surgery on a pinched nerve in his neck. He is doing well, even coping with the fact I am his taxi...he did so well the doctor allowed him to come home Tuesday evening instead of spending the night in the hospital. I pray he will continue to recover and be rid of the pain he was suffering.
So you see, I have had a wonderful week of surprises and blessings!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Hush-a-bye Tote Bag and Coin Quilt

The Moda Bake shop ( is just full of all those things you can do with the charm paks, layer cakes, jelly rolls and such Moda makes. Fabrics are beautiful and there are a variety of things to do......from home to baby to things for yourself! Take time to visit, you can use the link to the right and get ready to be inspired!

Two post today, trying to make up for lost time! I have lots of that!

Delicious Crockpot Corn

Crock Pot Corn On The Cob

4 oz cream cheese
1 stick butter
(melt in microwave)
2 lbs. frozen whole kernel corn
1/2 cup sugar

Place all ingredients in the crock pot on low until done.
This comes from my sister and she is an excellent cook. Would be wonderful for those times you need to fix something without much effort!

I am so thankful for the rain we got yesterday although it means mowing will have to be done sooner than later. No storms, but heavy rain for a bit. Seems to cleanse the air. God is so good to us.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009


This is a wonderful dish for those potluck dinners that come along...


1 (12 oz) pkg. shredded hashbrown potatoes (frozen)
1 (12 oz) pkg. grated cheddar cheese
1 (8 oz.) carton sour cream
1/2 cup melted margarine
1 can Campbells's cream of potato soup (nondiluted)
salt and pepper to taste

Defrost hash browns, mix all ingredients together and put in a greased baking dish. Top with 2 cups crushed corn flakes with 1/4 cup melted margarine. Bake at 350 for 1 hour. Watch carefully that the top does not get too brown, if it is browning too much cover with foil and continue baking.

Today is one of those days I really do need to concentrate on some of my know how days come that you have your pity party and don't want to do anything but pout!!! I know I am blessed beyond measure and I will shape myself up and be thankful as God means for me to be!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

OOPS I have been behind!

Haven't posted since the 20th of LAST did September get here so fast?
I have found a new addiction and its Farmtown on Facebook. Cute little game that I was invited to play by different friends. If you want a fun little game to play, try it.
Since my last post we now know that our little "butter bean" is a girl. We are excited and thrilled with the upcoming birth of Ava in January. The time will certainly fly by as it always does.
Have a dental appointment in a bit...sure hate that. Then plans to get some work done here and some more embroidery. I am getting a bit behind on everything. Grandkids suffered a virus but are now better.
I am so thankful we live in a country where we can worship without the fear of being punished. I do wonder how much longer that will be. Christians need to take a stand before things are so out of control we no longer have a voice and while we can!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Hot Slaw

This is a wonderful recipe for a delicious hot dog slaw that is sweet with a little heat!

1 GAL shredded cabbage
3 shredded carrots
1 cup white vinegar
1 Tbsp salt
1 tsp. black pepper
3 bell peppers, chopped
3 onions, chopped
3 cups sugar
3 cups mustard
1 1/2 tsp powdered cayenne pepper

Mix vinegar, mustard, sugar, salt, black and cayenne pepper together. Add the veggies and bring this mixture to a boil and put in jars and seal.

I am so thankful today for the ability to see, hear, speak, smell and hear. We tend to take these "simple" 5 senses for granted. I am thankful that God gave me these five senses so I can enjoy all His creation!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Mandy's Shower Gift

I finally have a picture of one of the baby gifts I have gotten done. This is outfit I bought and made matching burp cloths. The burp cloths are diapers with a ribbon attached to one and pastel rickrack attached to the other. I bought the elephant designs on Embroidery Library a few months back and the face on the one came from Band to Bows and I added the wording with a program I have called Monogram Wizard. I think having them coordinate make a "boutique" gift look. They haven't chosen a name for the little girl yet and the shower is this week so these don't have a name on them.
I just have to brag a moment today and praise God for my wonderful neighbors! I have lived here nearly 33 years and I am surrounded by wonderful and loving folks, some family and all families of the heart. They never bother me but if I call on someone for help, they are right there ready and willing. Steve and I were just discussing this the other night, what a blessing all our neighbors are! Each of us watch out for the other!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Easy Sausage Balls

Now I know you saw that title and said "OH NO, not another sausage ball recipe"! Well, I found this one to be the BEST one I have tried and the EASIEST...

2 cups Pioneer baking mix
1/2 cup water
1 lb. hot pork sausage (I use Groggans)
12 oz grated sharp Cheddar cheese

Put sausage and cheese in a bowl and microwave until warm (about 30 secs in mine)
Mix this together and add the Pioneer mix and water. Mix all of this well with hands and make into 1 1/2 inch balls and bake at 400 for about 12-15 minutes. (I do spray the pan with a cooking spray but you could use parchment paper!)

Heating the sausage and cheese will cut down on mixing time by half! These are delicious and can be frozen after cooking and cooling for a quick snack or breakfast....that is if you have any left!

Thankfully today I am getting some more baby gifts made for the upcoming babies popping up all around me! I just love doing these things and will be posting some pictures soon of finished gifts. There may be lots of repeats as far as the item in the gift, but they will all look different with the different fabrics and such!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Kids Hooded Towel Tutorial

You can buy hooded towels for infants that are really cute but you can make them from matching store bought bath and hand towels that are so much better! They are made from thicker fabrics and last longer like regular towels do plus they are larger and seem to me more absorbent.
Beckie over at (or simply click on the Kids Hooded Towel Tutorial) has created a wonderful tutorial for making these wonderful hooded towels. She kindly gave me permission to use a link to her and her picture for this post. I have made them before and plan to make more in the future. Visit Beckie's blog and enjoy your visit there!
I am so thankful today that I can get on the internet and find folks like myself that enjoy creating things and sharing their love and thankfulness for God's blessings. I have found so much creative inspiration and Christian inspiration just sitting here in the comfort of my own home by visiting places on the web.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Appliqued Christmas Stocking

This is one of the Christmas stockings I did for the grandkids. I used some applique designs from and a variety of other designs. I did do this stocking out of red and white fleece and added some decorative trim. Fleece won't be my choice on the next ones. It just doesn't hang well to me. The pattern was traced from a paper Christmas gift bag I got at the Dollar Store and it made a nice size stocking.
Today I was up early and got Emilee and Parker to school. Its hard getting back in the routine school requires but helps me to get myself back on a schedule, somewhat anyway! Today I have finished the laundry and once again I wonder where all those clothes come from...we don't have that many it seems when we are trying to dress to go somewhere!! I am so thankful to be able to have a washer and dryer! I would never be able to handle carrying clothes to the laundrymat with my problems walking so today I just want to say I sure am blessed to have these handy machines here at my disposale whenever I need to use them....funny the little things in life we take for granted!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Machine Embroidery Applique for Kids

You just have to love sewing for kids! Pictured is an outfit I made for Emilee, my granddaughter, when she was about 3. Its just a simple little top with carpis, you know the pattern books are full of these, made from pink and white gingham check. I added a bunny from in applique. I needed something for the pants to make the outfit look complete and emailed Marilyn Brandon, the owner of Sew Many Designs, and told her I would pay her to digitize me a heart applique. Marilyn was so sweet she sent me the heart applique free! If you have never done embroidery applique on your embroidery machine, hop over to Marilyn's site or google "machine embroidery applique designs" and you will find tons of stuff! This is from the Marilyn's design collection called Hop Into Spring. Marilyn has an extensive collection of things for giving these plain Jane patterns a quick boutique look! Each design will include a text of instructions for helping you applique the design. I am not affiliated with Sew Many Designs in any way other than that of a happy customer! Look through her project pages and see some other ideas customers have posted using her designs. In fact, you will find that I have posted this very outfit in the customer project pages.
Oh, and you will find that you can use up some scraps of fabrics you have laying around when doing embroidery applique!
Today was a wonderful day! Its still warm but there was a breeze. We were able to take the 3 grands to church with us this morning. Its a wonderful time to spend with them and introduce them to God and His Word.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Chicken Salad

4 chicken breasts boiled in water with 1 stick of butter
(boil the chicken for a long time and it will just fall apart and be very tender)
2 cups sliced red seedless grapes
1 peeled and chopped Grannie Smith Apple
2 small cans drained pineapple tidbits
about 1 cup (more or less) of toasted chopped pecans (I just put them in a nonstick skillet and get them warm so the oils will really let go of flavor, but keep them stirred!)
about 2 tbls sugar
about a 1 1/2 cups of chopped sweet pickles or sweet salad cubes
Get a large jar of HELLMAN'S mayo and you'll just add and stir until it looks like it is creamy enough, you can always add more later if you need too
Better if you make it the night before its to be served
You can adjust your ingredients if you wanted to make a smaller amount

This is a big hit at showers and get-togethers. My sister gave me the recipe.

Today I am so thankful to be up, dressed and feeling better. I have had a bout of just not feeling too well. Maybe its the heat? The sun is shining and although it promises to be a very hot day, its beautiful. Only God could create the beauty of sunshine!

Friday, August 7, 2009

Meet Belle

This is another family malta-poo, Tinkerbelle, or more commonly known as Belle to us. Belle doesn't know she is a D-O-G. Where ever you find me in the house you will usually find Belle. She is almost 14 years old and still in really good health except for some skin tags that the vet says can be removed but will likely return, so we just deal with them as long as they aren't seeming to irritate her too much. She used to have her own chair in the sewing room, or what she thought was HER chair. In fact, one day my daughter was here and sat in the chair as we were looking something up on the computer and Belle kept jumping on my leg and pawing at it and crying or dancing around whining. Casey asked what was wrong with her and I told her she was in Belle's chair. She got up, Belle hushed and jumped up in her chair. Casey says that is one spoiled dog! Since, I have gotten her a basket with a pillow in it because it takes less room and Belle doesn't have to jump into the chair each time we come to the sewing/computer room. I know lots of folks don't care for a pet in the house, but Belle is now such a part of the family I can't imagine life without her. Since I am aging right along, I will likely not have another dog, but I do love having Belle around! She is a wonderful companion and lots of company for me.
Today I am thankful for a growing family! Not only is my daughter expecting, but I have two nephews and wives expecting babies and all are due within 7 months of each other. My youngest nephew, Jake, called yesterday to tell me the news. This will be their first born so it is especially exciting for them. I told him so many were having babies I was afraid to drink the water. His reply was "Aunt Rita, drinking water isn't what does it!" I told you all before, our family has lots of laughs!
I am so excited for all of them and pray God will bless each one with healthy pregnancies and healthy babies!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Easy Italian Beef

Italian Beef

1 2-3 lb chuck roast
1 package Italian Dressing Mix
1 jar drained pepperoncini peppers
1 package Au Jus gravy mix

Wash the roast and place in crock pot. Cover with the peppers (I normally remove the stems) and cover with Italian Dressing Mix.
When the roast becomes tender (approx. 6 hours) remove some of the liquid and mix with the Au Jus gravy mix and return to the crock pot and allow it to cook another 20-30 minutes. If you feel you don't have enough juices, add some water. Some like to serve the sandwich "dipped" but I don't really care for soggy bread!! Serve on hoagie buns for a hearty sandwich! Wonderful for those days you don't want to spend lots of time in the kitchen but want folks to think you did!

This makes a very hearty MAN'S sandwich, but really a good one for ladies too! The peppers are not too spicy but you could add some spicy ones if you prefer.

Thankful today that my back is feeling better. A couple years ago I spent much time at the acupuncture's office getting this problem resolved and it worked well until the last couple days. I think I am just tired. I don't like complaining, so I am thankful for the pain to be gone for a bit!

Get a Tissue for this book!

I recently read this book. It is an early American setting and about the lives of three migrant siblings that lose their parents. It follows each of them as they are orphaned and then grow up, two wishing to find the others and one that is unaware until unfortunate circumstances and finds she is actually adopted but knows nothing of the other 2 siblings. Couldn't put it down. Each ones story is heart wrenching and the fact that it refers to the "Orphan Train" that carried orphans to the mid-west to be given to families and sometimes only for the fact they are old enough to work and help support the family.
This book shows how the 2 older siblings lean on God's guidance in their lives and has a wonderful ending. I had never read a book by this author before but read the reviews on it and all of them were very good. I cried many times throughout the book but it left me with a wonderful feeling and appreciation for family.
Reading this book sure did help enforce in me to be thankful for my family and my own situation growing up. We had plenty of love and the right amount of discipline!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Gifts for Baby

I seem to be going through a phase of baby showers! I am currently making burp cloths using cloth diapers, ribbons and embroidery machine designs. I am also doing just rectangle squares of 2 pieces of flannel sewn together for burp cloths. I remember my son, Chris, was really a bad "spitter" and you never had enough burp cloths around! Here you will find a nice article about these burp cloths made from diapers and some good online sources for buying good diapers.
Today I have posted a picture of a baby gift made a couple years ago. Its a baby's dirty clothes bag. I used a free design for the crown and with embroidery software Monogram Wizard Plus I created the saying "Even a Princess has dirty laundry" then did some embroidery applique to place little girls dresses on the bag. Its a simple drawstring top. The embroidery designs can be found from A Bit of Stitch here I also love putting these designs on the burp cloths with the baby's name.
Sadly today I have a friend that has lost her mother in a tragic auto accident. Like always I feel helpless in saying the right words to comfort this family. I do the only thing I can, I pray for the comfort that God can give them at this time. I do believe, although I sometimes act as if this isn't enough, offering ones name in prayer is the greatest thing we can do for others! I am thankful we have a loving God that hears and answers our prayers!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Back to School Time Already!

My 2 oldest grandchildren will be starting to school Wednesday. I can't believe that the summer with them has passed so quickly. They sure do dread going, but I know that there is some excitement in getting to see friends again that they haven't seen since last spring.
Today is my day with them and shortly we are going to town for them to spend their allowance and possibly go to the movies. The morning has been spent playing games on the Playstation, watching Nick TV and last time I looked the living room floor was full of toys as they set up their "town" using the Fisher-Price toys their dad played with as a child! One thing for sure, we have gotten our money's worth from those toys!
I am so thankful for the time with them. It is truly a blessing to be able to be at home and have days like today with them, although sometimes it requires refereeing fusses! I absolutely believe being a grandparent is one of God's greatest blessings!

Friday, July 31, 2009

Busy Day Peach Cobbler

Busy Day Peach Cobbler

29 oz. can of sliced peaches
1/3 cup sugar
3 oz. box peach jello
stick of margarine melted
1/2 box yellow cake mix (or the l layer size)

Drain the peaches, reserving syrup, and spread in a long dish. Sprinkle sugar and jello over the peaches.
Cover with the cake mix, dribble peach juice over cake mix, pour melted margarine over all. Bake at 350 45
minutes. (Very easy and fast to fix)

This recipe came from my DAD! To be fair, his sister shared it with him. When I asked what size long dish to put it in, his reply was "longer than a baby's shoe box but shorter than a football field".....quickly followed by saying a 9x13 pan worked well for him. You can see his wonderful sense of humor in this as it is in nearly all things.
For more delicious recipes and some wonderful links to fun sewing tutorials and ideas, visit my friend Pam's blog at Pam and I are long time friends although she has lived in South Carolina now for over 20 years. When we see each other or talk, we just pick back up where we left off!
Today when thinking of blessings, I am thankful for getting my sense of humor from Dad. A sense of humor I feel is a blessing because it can get you through daily trials by seeing it in a whole new light. Laughter is wonderful. When my family manages to get together there are always plenty of laughs. I have wonderful friends that always help me to laugh. Humor can be a healing emotion that everyone needs in their lives!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Basic Pillowcase Dress « Embroidery Articles

Basic Pillowcase Dress « Embroidery Articles

Here's a tutorial for a fun and simple project for little girls. I have intentions of making some of these for my great-niece and her new little sister coming in October. Of course I will make one for Butter Bean if its a girl! If you search the web you can find different tutorials for these and for some wonderful inspiration just go to ebay and search pillowcase dresses for lots of different views and fabric combinations.
Thankful today for having a quiet morning and time to relax before the day starts. I am enjoying reading some blogs and email and sipping my coffee! I need to get on with the day now and get some things done so that when Casey leaves on Saturday I can get to the sewing machine!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Thinking Christmas in July?

I keep seeing those little things popping up unexpectedly here and there about Christmas being X number of days, you know how time flies. I thought I would share a picture of some overalls made for my great-niece, Ella. These will likely be the only pair I ever make. They are called by many names, my favorite being "boutique overalls." If you do a Google search with this name you can be lost for hours seeing plenty of good ideas.

The first picture shows the front of the overalls. I bought these at Wal-Mart, just a plain pair of cheap children's overalls. I drew the bib so I could create a pattern to cover it with the red gingham. I embroidered "Who Needs Santa, I have Granna" and a small Christmas tree on the gingham and then sewed it to the overall bib. I added red ball fringe and ruffled Christmas fabric to the bottom of the red gingham bib piece, the legs and the back of the overalls. I embroidered an appliqued gift box on the leg in front and a Santa head on the center top back. Sewing on these was challenging since there are the really thick double seams you have to sew over. I added little jingle bells under the ruffles so Ella would jingle as she walked. I was so proud of them and so relieved to be done with them! I said I'd never do another pair but then as I look at them I think, well maybe.....

In less than a month we, or should I say I, may know what sex "Butter Bean" is. Butter Bean's dad is one of our brave soldiers presently in Afghanistan. He has asked that Casey not know the sex of the baby until he can return in October. So the plan is that they will do the sonogram, if they can determine the sex of the baby it will be written on a card, sealed and mailed to me. I will have to keep the secret until Michael is home again and then I can tell him and Casey what they are having. Michael feels like he is missing so much, although we did record the last visit for him and Casey will be sending it to him via the internet when she returns home on Friday. I get the pleasure of finding out early so I can get to making things! I ask that you all pray for Michael and all our soldiers to return home safely. I am thankful that I am getting to spend time with Casey. She will be home until Friday and then she has to go back to Ft Rucker and go to work. For all us moms that can be with our children, lets remember those that can't and be thankful that God is allowing us the time we have with them each day. Luckily, my son lives just around the corner and I can see him and his children often. I am so thankful to have been blessed with my children and grandchildren.

Friday, July 24, 2009

My daughter Casey has just gotten her aviation wings at Ft Rucker. Pictured are "my girls" and me. The little blonde is my granddaughter Emilee. We were so proud to be able to be there when she was pinned. Steve did the honors of actually pinning her wings. She is now one of only 300 aviation Medivac pilots. I was really surprised that there are just 300 in this field. The commander over this group says it helps him to maintain a close relationship with each one. Please pray for all of our military. These men and women sacrifice so much to serve our country. Honor them and thank them every opportunity you can.
Yesterday I went with Casey to the doctor and he says all is well with her pregnancy and that next month we should know what she is having! I am so excited!
Today I am so thankful to be back home safely. As I get older, one of the sweetest pleasures of any trip is the trip back home! I am so thankful for the safe trip there and back and so thankful that God has given me a home that I cherish and love returning to. Its not a fancy house, its HOME. I can only imagine what our final trip will be when we go to our heavenly home one day. Seeing all those that have gone before us, those that we have missed and remembered, but mostly seeing the Lord and Savior that has blessed us without fail here on earth.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Diaper Bags, A New Fashion Statement for Baby

Diaper bags are a fun thing to do with a simple pattern and some fun fabrics and designs. I remember when I had my children, I had one large diaper bag and one smaller bag. If I remember correctly I used these two bags for both of my children. Moms now have lots of choices and lots of styles. I used to pack the large bag and carry the smaller one to throw a bottle and diaper in for shopping trips and church, but had that larger one in the car with all the other necessities just in case! I wasn't able to line the photographs like I wanted to because I am admittedly cyber-challenged!
The first bag pictured was for my great-niece, Ella. My sister chose the pretty bright turquoise fabric for the outside with a matching stripe on the inside. The choice in trims are just limitless. Using your imagination you can do almost anything to decorate the bag along with all those wonderful embroidery designs out there.
The second bag was made by sewing together a kids print and adding the "cuff" of green chenille fabric with the name embroidered on it. This was a really large bag but so much fun to look at with all the colors. I then added yellow ball fringe to the edge of the cuff.
The third bag was made from some fabric that had a texture somewhat like burlap, but it was more tightly woven than burlap. I had to dig through my stash to find colors to work with this one! (I convince myself this is the reason for building a stash!) The sailboat was originally in bright primary colors but I was able to embroider it using the color theme the bag was in. I love the blues and browns together.
All these bags are made from a similar technique but all are different sizes. I wish I had pictures of all the bags I have made. I have fabric waiting to make more, just haven't had the time to do it! You could make diaper bags from now until forever and never make the same one twice! Just as soon as we know what sex "Butter Bean" is, I will be trying to come up with another special bag!
You know, no matter what the situation, if you'll take time to look, you can find a blessing. When my Mother was sick and dying, we had the blessing of people that came from all directions to help us. We witnessed the love our parents shared in the kindness and gentleness our Dad used to care for Mama. How softly he spoke to her and how carefully he washed her face and catered to her. We KNEW they loved each other, but we got to witness that love first hand in their actions and conversations as her disease progressed. Although it was tough, we had the blessing of time to say the things we needed to say but rarely take the time to when we take for granted that tomorrow will come. Today I thank GOD for all those blessings that come no matter how badly things seem to be. I just hope that I can always be mindful enough to see the blessings and not let myself get lost in the despair of the moment.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Chicken and Dumplings.....ummm good!

My sister makes the very best Chicken and Dumplings and they are so easy to make. I thought I would share her recipe for those that have, like myself, struggled to find the perfect dumpling recipe.

Chicken and Dumplings

First, boil two or more, depending on your preference, boneless chicken breasts in a large amount of water and 1 stick of butter. Boil them until they are so tender you can just flake them apart. Remove from the broth it makes and then proceed to making your dumplings.


2 cups self-rising flour
2 heaping tablespoons shortening
(cut this together until crumbly)
At this point, you take a can of chicken broth straight from
the cabinet and add to the mixture a little at the time
until you form a good dough. Let this mixture
sit for 10-15 minutes. Have the pot of broth
turned on and boiling, add 1/2 to 1 tsp. of the
dumpling mixture at a time to the broth. Do this
rather quickly. The more you stir the more your
dumplings will fall apart, so try not to over stir.
(you may have to reduce the heat some at this point)
After you have all the dumplings added, salt and pepper
to taste, and add the chicken back into the broth and enjoy!

Wow, is this ever a good meal! You can adjust the amount of dumplings or chicken by just adding or using less of the base recipe. Like my sister, I don't like just a lot of chicken in my dumplings, but others may want more. I love using the boneless chicken breast.

Today I am thankful for the beautiful weather we have been having the last few days in Mississippi. Normally our July's are hot and dry. Last week we had some rain and the humidity broke and the weather cooled. The days have been sunny with a light breeze. These are the perfect days that God provides for us along the way so we can enjoy all his earthly creations.....the birds, flowers, trees, sunshine....ahhh, so much to be thankful for.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Our New Baby

As you can see "our" baby is growing.....both of them! Casey, our daughter, is 14 weeks pregnant now and beginning to show. This is an exciting time for all of us. God is blessing us with our 4th grandchild in January...well, lets just say we hope its the 4th and not 4th AND 5th! Actually if God sees fit to send them in two's, we'll happily take them and love them all. She had the first person to recognize today that she was pregnant.....I remember how exciting that was when I was pregnant!
For now we can just be content to watch our blessing grow!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Favorite Meatloaf Recipe

I consider meatloaf a comfort food. My husband "hates" meatloaf but he does like this one. I found the recipe years ago in a microwave cookbook but I bake it in the oven. Add some creamed potatoes, green beans and rolls and you are set to indulge!
Many like making a sandwich with the leftover meatloaf! Everyone that has tried this one raves about it.

Favorite Meat Loaf
(I normally double the sauce recipe)

1 8 oz can tomato sauce
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup white vinegar
1 teaspoon prepared mustard

mix well and set aside

1 egg, lightly beaten
1 med onion chopped
1 sm bell pepper chopped
1/4 to 1/2 cup quick cook oats
2 lbs lean ground beef
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

Mix everything but oats with meat and mix well, add oats and mix again, then add 1/2 of sauce and mix well again. Shape in a donut shape (makes it faster cooking and sure to get done through and through) and cover with remaining sauce. Bake in preheated 350 degree oven for 1 1/2 hour or more depending on your oven.

Today I am thankful that the youngest grandson, Caden, is better. He has had a virus this week and really gave us a scare this morning when his temperature got up to 100.8 and he screamed when you touched his stomach. Caden is only 2 and can't tell you where it really hurts. After a series of chest and stomach xrays and another trip to the doctor, his fever finally broke this afternoon and although his eyes still look weak, he is smiling and trying to play some. Keep prayers coming that this is the beginning of the end of a miserable week for him. You know when a 2 year old is too sick to play and smile that he/she is really sick! I asked many to pray for him and I believe God answered those prayers!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Books to Read - Janet Evanovich

If you are in need of good reading with plenty of laughs, I highly recommend the Stephanie Plum series of books by Janet Evanovich. Stephanie, in between jobs, finds herself working as a bounty hunter (although poorly) for her cousin Vinny. This series of books start with "One for the Money" and continue to the current book "Finger Licking Fifteen". Each is packed with the adventures Stephanie, Lula and Stephanie's dysfunctional family, namely Grandma. I find I laugh out loud many times reading these books and find it hard to put one down.
Today I know I am blessed although I feel kind of stressed with all I need to do. Lawn needs mowing, house needs attention and groceries need to be gathered. As much as I am stressed, I am more blessed. I HAVE a lawn to mow, a home to clean and money to purchase groceries. Furthermore, when I take time to pray and be thankful, I can begin to concentrate on doing these things and help erase the stress! May not get it all done today, but life will go on!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Sew Easy Quilt

Have you ever wanted to make a quilt? I did. My friend Pam directed me to an easy pattern that I thought I could possibly finish. This quilt just uses 10" squares of fabric to create an easy and fun to do quilt. My daughter loves coffees so I made hers with a coffee theme. I cut and sewed all the squares but then took it to a professional quilter for quilting and binding. I was so inspired that I made a matching "mug rug", or coaster and bought a cup that matched the theme. She was really impressed with it. On the embroidery machine I added a label to the back side of the quilt with the date and her name. I didn't think I would ever be able to finish a really fancy quilt that would require my attention for a long period of time. Mine was by no means perfect, but it was fun for me and I don't think Casey has seen any of the mistakes, if she has, she overlooks them! I hope to make quilts for each grandchild and one for my son. I will think on a theme that matches each person. I would encourage anyone that wants to try making a quilt to try this one for starters. If you click on the "Sew Easy Quilt" title you will find the 10" square quilt made in different fabrics and I think you will be inspired, if not encouraged to try a quilt of your own.
Today I am thankful that I am able to be a stay at home wife. Many think us stay at home folks don't do too much or that it wouldn't be rewarding. I beg to differ! Today I am caring for one sick grandchild, Caden, and likely heading off to pick up Emilee at church camp. This morning she called and thinks she doesn't want to stay the week and I promised her if she didn't that I would come get her. So I will hear back from her this afternoon and go get her if she decides to come on home. Had I not been able to be here it would have required Moms and Dads or other grandparents to take off work and do what being a stay at home wife allows me to do just by making small changes in my schedule......hmm,what schedule? I schedule as I go and as the needs arise! Thank you God, and my husband Steve, for allowing me the opportunity to be a stay at home wife!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Blessings of Lifetime Friendships

I once heard that most people can not fill the count on one hand with the names of true friends in their lives. I really find that hard to believe. I have many really good friends and many truly special friends.
My sister is among one of my oldest and dearest friends. She and I didn't used to be friends. We fought and resented one another and just weren't really close growing up. This is not to say that she would not have fought a bear for me at any time in our lives, she just didn't let me know it! As we age, we grow closer and closer. Our children are gown now and we don't live around nor have we ever lived around our parent's families. I know that if I am in need, she'll be the first one there for me. We are different in many ways, but we share a mutual love for one another.
Kathy is my best friend from 3rd grade and that was many, many years ago. She feels like family to me. I can count on the phone ringing at least a couple times a week around 8:30 a.m. and hear her voice.....just checking on me or just to tell me she loves me. We have shared some similar heartaches in life and there's lots of things she can tell you about me, and there are just as many things she wouldn't ever tell you about that is a true friend. We have laughed together, cried together and poured our hearts out to each other through out the years. If I needed her, 24/7, she'd be there in a heartbeat. She knows I'd do the same for her!
I met Janet in the 7th grade. I was in awe of her gentleness and kindness. She still amazes me with her kind ways. We struggled through Biology class together in the 9th grade. I don't know who hated it worst, me or her! We still keep in contact on a regular basis and she still inspires me to be what I should be in my life. She is always just a phone call away when I need her and she knows I am always here for her too.
Pam and I met each other on a night shift job years ago. She has lived away from here for over 20 years now, but we still keep in contact. Not only does she have the gift of sense of humor, but she has a the gift of helping you to realize its all in God's hands. Her positive no-need-to-worry attitude is amazing! She is talented, witty, smart and all of the things that I cherish in a friend. She has a kind listening ear and always says the right things at the right time.
Marie and I met on the ballfield when our kids were small. We immediately became "sisters of the heart" and have remained so until this day. We cry on each others shoulders when we need to and laugh and share things in our lives as often as we can get together.
Last, but not least, my daughter. I feel especially blessed that she and I can be mother/daughter but also friends. Maybe its because we share the same quirky sense of humor... I don't know, but I know she will have many special friends in her life too because she is special.
Each of these ladies have wonderful personalities and each possess the qualities I want in a true friend. I have many, many friends not mentioned, these are just my oldest and dearest, the ones I can count on lifting me up when I am down, the ones I can laugh with until I wet my pants....the ones that I can tell them I love them and believe that they return the love without conditions. I thank God for all my friends in my life and know they are my blessings. These are friends that I sometimes fear losing in my life but only to death...then I am reminded that each of them are not only "sisters of the heart" but also "sisters in Christ". I look forward to an eternity of friendship with each of them. Cherish your own friendships in life and don't hesitate to let them know what they mean to you.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Georgia Cornbread Cake

Need something fast and easy for a quick dessert? Try these. I describe it as a non-chocolate version of a brownie. Be careful when you try these....they're so good you might just (as we say in the south) swallow your tongue!

Georgia Cornbread Cake

1 1/2 cups flour
1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp vanilla flavoring
1 cup oil
2 cups pecans

mix all ingredients together and put in a pan sprayed with Pam and bake at 350 for about 30 to 45 minutes
(I used a 13x9 pan)

Today I have to say I am thankful to be home after a quick trip to see my daughter in Enterprise, AL. She is presently stationed at Ft. Rucker. In the picture you'll see her and her dad (my husband) from the trip he took down in April. Casey will graduate with her "wings" in a couple weeks. She has always been the sunshine in our lives and has a wonderful personality. We have so much fun together. She says when she told her classmates she had a surprise waiting when she got home on Wednesday afternoon and it was her mom she got funny looks. I am blessed that Casey and I share a wonderful relationship. We had such a good visit and so many really good laughs and some heart to heart talks. The doctor's office referred to the baby on the sonogram as the size of a Lima bean....I told her that was the northern term, here in the south she is carrying a little butter bean! So for now the baby is affectionately known as "Butter Bean".
God blessed me with a safe trip there and back and a wonderful time with Casey!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Read a Book

A few years ago my daughter introduced me to a book that I think should be required reading for all Christians! This book is called "Traveling Light" by Max Lucado. The book explores the 23 Psalms in depth, the richness and immeasurable love of our Father for us and His desire to carry all those burdens that we saddle ourselves with in life. I have turned back to this book several times, picking it up and randomly reading a chapter here and there. It seems that every chapter applies to whatever is burdening me at the time and reminding me that God wants me to let go of those things I can't fix and prayfully hand it to Him. Many booksellers on the internet still offer this book as well as Max Lucado's site.
Today I share the blessing of being a grandmother. I have three healthy grandchildren and another on the way. I have found that being a grandmother is just one of the best parts of life. Its almost as if God hands you a reward for the endurance of raising your own children. I don't love my grandchildren more than my children but they are here at a time in my life I can enjoy them and realize how quickly the time will go by when they will be adults. I hope and pray that I can be a positive Christian influence on them and I live for the day they give their own lives to Christ. Emilee,age 9, the oldest, will be experiencing church camp for the first time this year and is so excited. Parker is 7 and is so smart. He reads on an advanced level and seems to have an uncanny math ability. Caden is 2 and is often mistaken for a girl as he has beautiful dimples, blue eyes and a head full of curls that you can not tell where they start and end! Caden is potty training this summer and discovering lots of new things in life, recently being peanut butter and jelly sandwiches which he says are "UMMM, good!" We don't know yet what sex the new baby will be. This will be my daughter's first and I am so excited for her. My heart is already full with love for this baby and I look forward to getting to know it as I have the other 3.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Links Tuesday

I think on Tuesdays I will share with you a favorite link of mine. Last year I found the most wonderful site for e-patterns for sewing and quilting and lots of other crafts. It is and has patterns to download for a really reasonable prices. I did the ribbon t-shirt for my granddaughter. She designed the shirt. Emilee is 9 years old and very creative. She wears this shirt, just a simple Wal-Mart t-shirt in the beginning, with white knit capris. I encourage you to go to this site and explore it for a bit. may get lost for a couple hours here!
Today I share with you a blessing in my life. God blessed me with wonderful and loving parents. My Mom has been gone since '97 but loving memories of her fill my heart and her teachings allow me to grow everyday in the role of parent and Christian. My Dad is thankfully still here with us and blessing us everyday. Growing up I thought all children had wonderful and loving parents. Imagine my surprise to learn that just isn't true. Today I salute all parents that strive to be what God intended them to be.

Monday, July 6, 2009

The Beginning

This is the beginning of a new adventure for me! I hope to be able to create a fun blog to share with friends and family. Hopefully I will be able to show some things I make along the way whether it be in the kitchen or the sewing/embroidery room.
Mostly I want to share my blessings with you......I am happily mother to two healthy adults and grandmother to 3 1/2 beautiful, healthy grandbabies! (the "1/2" stands for the grandbaby due in January!) Thank you GOD!