Tuesday, August 25, 2009

~I heart faces…..touch of nostalgia

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Every time we get together with Duane’s lil sister, we take a group shot of the kiddos. It started way back when Cody was a baby and Cristy was still a teenager. I had lots of pics of the 2 of them together. Now it’s all 5 of the kiddos (and one really cute dog, who actually poses for the camera) So of course when they were here this summer I HAD to get a group shot!  But the really nostalgic part of the pic is the brick building.  The building the kids were leaning on, is my old school. It was build in the 1870’s (and no, i’m not that old, even tho my kids seem to think so) Even as a child I loved all things antique, vintage and old!!!! So the zillion year old school was very intriguing to moi.  Now I have a really special picture with the kiddos I love and the old school that I love!
Click on over to I Heart Faces    125x125  to see what other people get nostalgic about.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

~what a co-inky-dink!


Aunt TT came to stay for the summer while their new house was being built. TT is the name Cody gave her when he was a little guy because he couldn't say Cristy. Look how cute these pictures of Cody and Aunt TT are! While editing pictures I had a feeling that the picture somehow looked familiar, so I started going thru pics of Cristy and found the one of Cody and Aunt TT on July 4th, 1996 at Ft Bragg. She had come down to visit us before leaving for Army basic training in SC. Now that Cody's taller than her, she has to lean on him LOL
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~baby Ashton

<><>My beautiful nephew Ashton is such a sweet lil man. We have fight over who gets to hold him :-) I'm so blessed to have them living with us for the summer, so that I get to see him everyday!

From Collages

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

~Lets hear it for the boys....I heart faces boys week

click the picture to make it bigger


click on the button to see all the entries, leave some nice comments and go enter one of your favorite picks of your favorite boys ;-)


Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Monday, June 15, 2009

~I heart Faces .... Sepia tone week




Thought I'd have a little fun with this weeks "sepia toned" theme. I'm feeling creative. When I think of sepia photos I automatically think of pics of ancestors on my moms stairway walls. I thought I'd turn myself into one of those vintage photos with a lil help from my paint shop pro program. I have one of Duane too but since it was his DA photo and I didn't take it, I can't use it for this contest. If I find the original pic of myself that I took in sepia mode, I'll add it later.



Tuesday, May 26, 2009

~Memorial Day Weekend

making cody test the swing for me ;-) if it holds him, it'll hold moi.
We ended up having an impromtu cookout at my parents Monday night when we went to pick up Courtney who was playing with her cousin Cora. A quick jaunt to the store and Viola`, instant cookout! Any excuse to eat brownies and other junk is fine with me :-) My Dad tilled up some land for me to use for pumpkins so we got those planted too. Yay I won't have to buy the dern things for the kids this year! I've run over to my parents house 4 times in 4 days which is back roads the whole way. Is it any wonder I have to wash my car all the time?

Beautiful ending to a lovely day.......

~Happy Mothers Day!

I had a peaceful Mothers Day spent in the backyard eating BBQ. Ahhhhhh! We had all the 'rents and siblings over after church and just hung out. We acted like Ohioans and played cornhole and tossed around the football. And for some strange reason I have no pics of any Mothers!






And my hubby and kiddos got me something I've been wanting all year............
I'm in love :-)

~Cue the Flowers

Wahoo I've got foliage!!!! I've never been into gardening until this year. Probably has something to do with all the hours of weeding I was FORCED to do as a child. It's been a few years and I guess I've finally gotten over it and moved on. When we bought our new house it didn't come with anything except a lot of trees and those don't really count as "landscaping". Do they? We've been here for over a year and finally decided to do something about the pitiful lack of foliage. That might not be the whole truth, the kick in the tush might have come when a teenage neighbor came over and said he'd help me with a flowerbed this year if I wanted him to. If teenagers are starting to notice your lack of flowers then it's pretty bad! The plants are still pretty puny right now but they'll fill out soon enough. It's a good start :-)


Before:

After:

Saturday, May 23, 2009

~Welcome to the world, Ashton

My sister-in-law, long time BF, Cristy was pregnant with baby#3. Unfortunately her hubby got sent to DC for work and wouldn't be around to finish what he started. (lol) So Cristy and I came up with a plan. She was to get induced on a Saturday morning. I was going to drive up (with Mother in law in tow) on Friday morning, we had a girls day all planned out. Shopping, Hibachi for dinner and Dairy Queen ice cream cake for dessert (we were also celebrating HER birthday and Mothers Day), head home to watch a chick flick and chill out before the big day. All girly, all day :-) But the lil man didn't think much of our Girly Day, so he showed up on a Tuesday. Cristy called at 7am saying her water just broke!!! Luckily I was already packed because she had been having false labor pains for a couple of days and I'd just been waiting for 'the call'. We got up to Lansing in about 3 1/2 hours and ran into the hospital. Luckily her dear friend Renee was available to drive her to the hospital since I couldn't. They even made a little pit stop to a few stores on the way. True Cristy style :-) Two hours after I arrived, we had Ashton Grant and he's beautiful!!!!! And yes I said "we" because I got to be her 'hubby' LOL I had the wristband on, I coached her, I got dirty and I got to cut the cord. I have a whole new repect for what the men do. I had Renee helping with all the running around and it was still exhausting (kids, dogs, cooking, cleaning, etc. on top of being at the hospital all day). But it's sooo much cooler when I'm not the one in labor! :-) Seeing a new life come into the world is amazing. (my MIL doesn't think so, she about passed out) I felt the exact same when Cristy's first lil guy was born when we all lived out in Colorado, I was there for him too. I'm not all that great at giving birth myself but I'm good to have around if someone else is :-)
Proud big brother and sister
Dad was able to fly in for a few hours to meet his new baby

Friday, April 24, 2009

~Vacation '09 ~Williamsburg VA

Click the link below to see the vacation pictures.....
(hit the 'slideshow' button)


We're home from vacation........wow, how do vacations go so fast? One day your anticipating your upcoming 'getaway', then BAM! It's over!!!! The above picture is of our condo, which in my opinion is the only way to go :-) If it were only a 1-nighter, a hotel room would suffice, but for a week long vaca, only a condo will do! The kiddos had their own bedroom and bathroom, we had our own room and BIG bathroom, living room, dining room and a nicely stocked kitchen. I was able to make Cream of Wheat and turkey bacon every morning and make dinner every night. Roast beef, mashed potatoes, steamed squash for example....not bad! Except on the kids pick night we had fish sticks and tator tots :-( and I added peas :-)
Something I learned on vacation.....I'm getting old! The kids have so much energy! We must of walked 12,483 miles every day and we'd come home exhausted but the kids would want to go swimming or to play putt-putt or basketball. Oy!!!!
I also learned that vacation isn't very 'restful'. Every day I had to be up and in the shower by 6:30am, except for one day we could have slept in a little because Busch Gardens didn't open until 10am..............and Cody woke us all up at ..... 6:30 :-( Ugggg!!!! Duane and I enjoyed all the architecture and "old stuff" as the kiddos called it. The kids of course marked Busch Gardens as their favorite, and now they've got the roller coaster bug. They are already trying to plan a Cedar Point trip for this summer. I'm so glad Cody was around to go on the BIG roller coasters with Duane so I don't have to this year. Some of the crazy 90 degree straight down stuff they have out now is just gettimg TOO extreme for moi!!!

I've looked at other peoples vacation pics from Williamsburg and I missed soooo much. We spent 2 days there and barely dented all there was to see. Alot of it was because it was spring break and the place was packed so it was a lot of 'waiting to get in and hurry up to get out'. I'd love to go back when it's not quite so crazy and be able to take some pics without all the tourists in the way :-) and to eat at some of the more "authentic" restaurants.

I didn't do the place justice with my pictures so go HERE for pics from Igougo.com

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Happy Rockin’ Birthday Courtney!

My baby turned 11 on Friday!!!! holy smoley! 2009 is the year of Rock n Roll around our house. My kids know more bands from the 80s than I do thanks to Rock Band! It kinda took me by surprise when Courtney said ‘Warrant is my #1 fav band followed by Beatles….I just love their antonyms' (aka hello, goodbye)

What on earth!? I don’t even remember what songs Warrant sang! Clearly my family is much more musical than I am. Duane plays acoustic, Cody plays an electric guitar and now courtney is the proud owner of a lovely pink guitar. I’m feeling a little left out. Duane did try to teach me “hey there Delilah” but it didn't stick :-)

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Since she wanted a Rock n Roll theme. We took her to the Hard Rock Cafe for dinner, made her a guitar cake and bought her a guitar. She also got an Alvin and the Chipmunks CD, DVD, DS game and a stuffed Alvin. She got new drumsticks from the Hard Rock too- she’s planning on switching from flute to drums next year. Oh dear, I think we’ve created a monster. I just hope she doesn’t want a tatoo for her 12th b-day!!!!!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

~Winter comfort food = Yummy!

Found this yummy recipe in the family fun magazine, it's the perfect winter comfort food and it's Delicious! It tasted awesome with this French bread I made from the kitchenaid cookbook that came with my mixer that I just found packed in the moving boxes. Guess I should've unpacked it sooner- because it was gooooood. Something about working hard for your bread, makes it tastes so dern good :-)

Creamy Mushroom and Chicken Soup (from the family fun magazine-they have great recipes!)

6 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, chopped
3 tablespoons flour
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon pepper
6 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 pounds mushrooms, sliced
3/4 cup sliced celery
3/4 cup chopped carrots
2 cups quartered baby red potatoes
1 cup chopped yellow squash
1 1/2 cups frozen corn kernels, thawed
2 teaspoons thyme
2 cups light cream
3/4 cup grated Parmesan, plus more for garnish if desired
2 cups chopped cooked chicken


Step 1
In a large pot, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until tender, about 6 minutes. Stir in the flour, salt, and pepper and mix until smooth. Gradually add the broth, then turn the heat up to medium-high and bring the soup to a boil. Add the mushrooms, celery, carrots, potatoes, squash, corn, and thyme. Reduce the heat and simmer the soup, covered, until the vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes.

Step 2
Add the cream, Parmesan, and chicken. Heat the soup for an additional 10 minutes, but do not let it boil.

Step 3
To serve, ladle the soup into a bowl and sprinkle it with more Parmesan, if desired. Makes about 15 cups.




Nutritional Information:
Per serving (1 cup):
Calories 226
Total Fat 14 g (22% DV)
Saturated Fat 8g (39% DV)
Cholesterol 59 mg (20% DV)
Sodium 845 mg (35% DV)
Total Carbohydrate 14 g (5% DV)
Fiber 2g (7% DV)
Sugars 3g
Protein 12 g (24% DV)
Vitamin A 1484 IU (30% DV)

Percent daily values are based on a 2,000-calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

~The best chili I ever ate



I'm forever looking for recipes to help me deplete our supply of deer meat in the freezer. Not because I WANT to eat it, but it's there and well, I don't want poor Bambi (or in this case, BUCK) to have died in vain---so we eat it :-( I found this recipe boasting to be "the best chili I ever ate" in one of Sarge's magazines and ripped it out to give it a try. It was made by a fellow named Ernie Nichols at a WV deer camp. I started cooking the meat Monday night for dinner, but I DESPISE the smell of deer meat and it made me feel ill, so we ate cereal for dinner instead :-) I finished cooking the meat tho and put it in the fridge for later. Last night I made this recipe with the meat that I no longer had to smell :) Maybe I'll just have to pre-cook alot of the meat and then store it all in the freezer to pull out as I need it - minus the retched smell. Enough about retching, back to the recipe.........Cuz I'm sure you're just dying to try it now aren't you?! LOL

I know I'm not making it sound appitizing, but it came with the title "the best chili I ever ate" and it really honestly was! So go put a clothespin on your nose, cook up some venison and make this super easy chili- you won't regret it!!!!

2 Tbsp veg. oil
1 lb ground venison (or any ground meat)
1 c. diced onions
1 medium red or green pepper chopped
16 oz can diced tomatoes
16 oz can tomato juice
16 oz can pork and beans
16 oz can kidney beans (drain and rince them!)
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbsp garlic powder
1 Tbsp chili powder
1 Tbsp crushed red pepper (i'm a whimp I didn't add this)
1 c. grated cheddar cheese (i didn't add this either)

corn bread topping:
2 c. cornmeal
15 oz can cream corn
1/2 c. milk
1/2 c. sugar

Brown venison in oil. Place in large pot. Add onion, tomatoes, tomato juice, pork and beans, kidney beans, salt, garlic, chili powder and red pepper. Cook on medium heat for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. In a seperate bowl combine cornmeal, cream corn, milk and sugar. Pour chili in deep 9x13 baking dish. Sprinkle with cheese. (i didn't, but i'm sure it's good) Pour cornmeal mixture evenly over top of chili. Bake in oven at 400 for 35 mins. serves six.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

~Loving the sun~ I heart faces week 4

oh boy, Siamese cats are hard to photograph! Their pretty baby blues are very sensitive to light, so my cat (Ozzie) is constantly blinking when I take his picture. I wanted to catch the awesomeness of his blue eyes and had to do everything under the sun to get him to keep his eyes open so that I could shoot using natural light. He's such a pretty boy and cooperated so well!


From Drop Box


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Saturday, January 31, 2009

~No wonder!!!!


We were up and out the door early Saturday morning to take Courtney to archery (btw, she beat most of the boys heehee). As soon as we turned on the road we saw this nice neighbor fella plowing the roads. NOW I know why it takes so long to get these backroads cleared!!!! LOL



Just teasing, we do have these handy dandy trucks come thru sometimes too.


I actually think the snow is (kinda) pretty ~ when Duane is driving, not me! Look at that mountain of snow! shheeesh!













Nort did so well!!!! They don't usually shoot at balloons but the kids had a blast doing it :-)


Friday, January 30, 2009

~Merry Christmas!

Hmmm someone's a little late getting the Christmas pictures on here, but better late than never I say!!!!
I adore this one of Courtney and Cora. Playing Rock Band on the PS3

She means it too!!!!
Liz, Mom & I
Clea and Chad

a little Christmas night music