Thursday, December 22, 2011

On the road again

It's Christmas time! Woohoo!

Tonight we are leaving North Eastern Pennsylvania and headed out to... North Western Pennsylvania! I'm very excited to see my mom, dad, sister (with her family), as well as both of my grandma's, and all my aunts and uncles. My brother isn't able to make it out. We're all kind of disappointed, but he works as a corrections officer and just couldn't get the time off.

So, although I am really excited to see everyone, I'm also a little sad, because my grandma was recently diagnosed with Lymphoma (a type of cancer) and I know she's not feeling very well. My mom has also been worn out by this. It's taken its toll on my family, however, I'm just grateful to have the opportunity to see everyone.

If we leave here around 12:00 we should arrive at home between 4:15 and 4:30 am. Whew. That's going to be a very late bedtime. Hubby is so good about staying up- it doesn't even bother him. I can't say the same for me. It's quite a struggle to stay up that late. Especially since it's pitch black out and there's nothing to look around at! lol I will do the best I can.

So, hubby and I went to a concert last weekend and I can't tell you how great it was! We had an amazing time and were so blessed to meet the group Joey + Rory. They were so good live and at the meet and greet were kind and friendly- just like your neighbors might be. We had our picture taken with them, they signed a poster as well as a CD for us, and we just had a wonderful evening. If you get the chance to see them, please do! (I should probably mention that it would better if you like country music. lol)

Their tour bus

Scott and I with Joey + Rory

We had a large time.

So, in other news...well, let's see.

We had our Christmas party at work. I made a Cracker Barrel-style hashbrown casserole, doubled the batch, and still went home with nothing left over. I'll take that as a good sign.

Hmm...I didn't cook a whole lot this week and I'm trying now to even remember what the heck it was we had to eat.

I made chicken with sauce from a wing place "Quaker Steak and Lube". The sauce is called "Louisiana Lickers" and if you ever have the opportunity to go to a Quaker Steak, by all means, try that sauce. It's my favorite! I do believe they have several spread out in states other than Pennsylvania, so you might have one nearby. I grew up about 20 miles away from the original location in Sharon, PA.

My friend Kristin got me a glass milk bottle for Christmas. She knew I'd been looking for one and here's the fun part. It's from Jamestown, PA. That probably doesn't mean much to you, but it's about 5 miles from where I grew up. Somehow, out of all the milk bottles that were there, that one ended up in her hot little hands, a good 4 1/2- 5 hours away from its original location. Funny how God works little things like that out, isn't it?

Well, I believe that's about all for right now.

Let me take this opportunity to wish you all a very Merry Christmas.

And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,

Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. Luke 2 8-14

Check out this video called "Remember Me"

May God bless you all. A very Merry Christmas from my home to yours.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Wish list for Christmas

Hello there,

It's been quite awhile since I've thought to write anything down here. It's not that I haven't had anything to write about. In fact, lots of things, both good and bad, have taken place over the last month. I just...wasn't sure how to put them down. Do you ever get like that? Sometimes it's hard for me to verbalize what I'm feeling. Sorry for not including you. I hope you don't feel left out.

I left work early today, sick. I'm feeling a little better now, but still not quite "right". I hope that will go away with a good night's sleep.

Do you have most of your Christmas shopping done? I think we have just about everything we need, with the exception of like 5 gifts. Considering we have to buy for 29 people, that's a good chunk of it done!

I got some great deals on Black Friday online. I wasn't about to rush into the crowds in the actual malls and stores. Yuck. That's kind of my definition of a terrible time. I got 4 sweaters from Christopher and Banks. 1 was 9.99 and the others were 14.99. I was pretty pleased!

In no particular order, here are the things I would love to have for Christmas:

1. More time with my husband
2. A pretty party dress and a fun event to wear it to
3. Democrats and Republicans to get along and realize they NEED to
4. A closer relationship with God
5. Adam-12 and Dragnet on DVD
6. Good news about both of my grandmas
7. A relaxing vacation with just my husband and myself.
8. A part time job so that I could spend more time taking care of my husband and my home.
9. A car that is less than 5 years old. (Our current cars are 16 years old...each.)
10. Get involved in some kind of women's group in the evenings so I'm not sitting at home alone every night.

There shouldn't be any real shockers on the list. I'm pretty predictable.

Till next time, blog friends...hopefully it will be sooner rather than later!!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Allergies, Snow, and Joey + Rory

Well, let's lead right off with the allergies since they seem to have come up first. They've been bad. Quite bad. A lot. But that's okay. They won't last forever.

They won't, right? Tell me they won't.

It snowed here yesterday! A glorious snow with great big flakes and about 3 inches of accumulation. I really liked it. I suppose in the middle of January or so, snow becomes tiring, but up until then, I find it nostalgic, romantic, and something to look forward to. I don't necessarily look forward to driving in it, but hey. I'll take the bad with the good.

Lastly, let us take a gander at my new flavor of the month in music: "Joey + Rory". If you are a fan of country music, please give one of their tunes a listen! They are Christian folks, married, and have an older country sound.

Two of my favorites:

"This song's for you"

"That's important to me"

You gals might find "That's important to me" mighty endearing. I know I do.

So, what's happening in this household? Not a whole lot. I cleaned out a bunch of old books that I don't really ever plan on reading again. I just need to find a couple boxes to put them in so we can take them down to Salvation Army and donate them.

I am using our desktop computer- something I haven't done for a long time. I feel so disconnected from everything else when I'm up here. That can be nice at times, but I tend to lose track of time faster up here. Also, the space bar on the keyboard squeaks. It's kind of distracting.

You know, I'm not so much in the mood to write tonight, but I did want to update my poor little blog. I feel like I've been neglecting it lately. Sometimes I just don't have a whole lot going on. My life is pretty routine- I'm okay with that, but it doesn't make for riveting reading. lol

I hope you're all doing well. If you ever have anything you want to ask, feel free. I know I don't have a huge readership, but any questions are welcome. :)

May God bless you!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

A time for everything

Hello all,

I hope that you're having a good week so far. Mine hasn't been too bad, all considering.

I'm looking forward to this weekend- my husband and I are going on a 3 hour train ride on Saturday. The excursion isn't very long- only from Catawissa, PA to Northumberland, PA and back. However, we both enjoy going on train excursions and the fall leaves ought to be beautiful. I hope we will have a nice day, but I think whether it's sunny or rainy, we will still have a good time.

If I get any nice camera shots of the train or while on the train, I will feature them in a blog post. :)

One of the girls in my office is celebrating her birthday today. We will go out as a department for lunch to help her celbrate her special day. Yum! Mexican food!

Over the past few weeks, it seems as though it's been one thing after another- and as a result, my poor house has suffered. I really need to make a plan on how to get it back on track. Right now the dust is so thick on some of the shelves in our living room and in our bedroom, I might be able to collect it and start a small fire. Yuck! In addition, our living room carpet needs swept badly, my clothes need to be changed from spring/summer to fall/winter, my shoes need straightened, the kichen could use a good scrubbing, and for that matter, so could the bathroom. Whew! I am tired just thinking about all of that. If you have any tips on how to get motivated, I'd love to see them.

One thing that I am happy about this year- we bought some curtains for our bedroom. Are they pretty, frilly, and beautiful? No. They are not. They are thick, dark and not very attractive. However, they were made to be functional! These are energy saving curtains that are supposed to cut down on those winter drafts that our upstairs windows seem to have a lot of. We always put the plastic up on them every year, but hubby thought it might be a good idea to get the energy saving curtains, too. I think it's a great idea and I hope they help! :)

I'm please that all of our decorations have been up and displayed since about the 5th of September. I love coming home to a nicely decorated home. It makes things a little more pleasant. Do you decorate for fall?

I used to have a lot of decorations for both Halloween and Thanksgiving, but lately I've only put up more generic "fall" stuff and then added some turkeys when November was close by. Halloween has just fallen out of fashion for me. I'm not interested in it any more.

Thank you for stopping by. I'm glad you were here to visit!

God bless you!


Wednesday, September 28, 2011

It's been awhile!

I realize I haven't posted anything in almost a month- time seems to be getting away from me.

Hubby and I just returned home last weekend from a vacation in Maine. It was beautiful there!

Me at Cape Elizabeth

My mother in law took this beautiful shot at Portland Head Lighthouse

On the lake where we stayed

We had a wonderful vacation and have so many great memories!

I will post again soon. Sorry to have been away!

Bless you all! :)

Thursday, September 1, 2011


Tonight I made one of our very favorite casseroles. Because it mimics the real thing very well, and is so easy to make, I thought I might post the recipe here. I served it with green beans and garlic toast, but salad would be great, too.

Lazy Lasagna

6 oz uncooked pasta (I used Mafalda cause it resembles tiny lasagna noodles)
1 pound ground beef
14 oz. pasta sauce (I used store bought, but if you have your own, use it!)
8 oz cream cheese cut into cubes and softened to room temp
1 cup cottage cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

Preheat oven to 350. Cook pasta according to directions (I recommend slightly under cooking since this will be going in the oven). Place in a greased 8x8 pan. Cook hamburger on stove top till no longer pink. Drain and add sauce- stir till combined. Set aside. In a medium sized bowl, combine sour cream, cottage cheese, and cream cheese. Use a fork to mash and blend the mixture until it is smooth and creamy. Spread mixture evenly over pasta. Spoon beef mixture over cream cheese. Top with parmesan cheese. Bake 25-30 minutes or until bubbly. Let cool 5-10 minutes before serving.


Note- this recipe works just fine with reduced fat/lower fat cheese and sour cream.

I hope you like this. As I said, it's a winner in our house!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Fall is in the air!

Tomorrow will be September 1st! Woohoo! Not only do we have a vacation to Maine coming up in a few weeks, but it's also time to decorate for autumn- my favorite time of year!

Since the last time I posted, hubby and I weathered Irene- which wasn't really a big deal where I live. We had a lot of rain, some wind and spent some quality time at the local mall since we couldn't be outside. Benton, a town about 20 miles north of us, had a lot more wind damage. I believe there are quite a few folks who still don't have power up that way. Still, everyone is safe and with the exception of some trees, everyone weathered the storm safely. I hope that you rode the storm out comfortably, too.

My husband put in for a 1st shift position. I can't begin to tell you how excited I am at the prospect of being on the same shift again. For the past 4 years, we've worked opposite shifts. Basically, he leaves the house an hour and a half before I get home, and he comes home about an hour after I've gone to bed. We see each other Friday nights (if I am able to stay up late enough!) and on the weekends. I am thankful for the time we do spend together- but I wish that we could be a "real family" and I could cook for him, see him daily, etc.

Do you ever feel like you didn't learn something well enough the first time, and now you're sort of scrambling to make up for those lost years? I took Home Economics from 7th grade to 12th grade. I got high scores. I actually won the Home Economics award my senior year. However, I sort of feel like I could have done better and learned more. I found a Home Ec course online for teen girls...I'm considering ordering it. lol Silly right? I mean, clearly I've got enough down to get by. The house is relatively clean, I meal plan, I cook, etc. Still...I feel like I could use a refresher course. I never really learned how to properly clean the house from top to bottom. I typically just do things as I notice they need to be done. Bah, I digress. I'm sure me listing a list of things I'm not great at housekeeping-wise makes for a riveting read.

So, at any rate, back to fall. I am planning on cleaning the house 1 room at a time and putting up decorations in each as I go. I believe we have 2 totes of Fall/Thanksgiving decorations down cellar, so I'll start with the living room and keep on going till I'm done! Do you like to change your decorations for the seasons? I must admit, I'm not always as enthusiastic about it. Sometimes it seems like a hassle, but once the decorations are up and my home feels cheery and cozy, I'm always glad I took the trouble to put everything up.

Have you any plans for the long holiday weekend? I believe my husband will be forced to work on Saturday, but Sunday and Monday should be free! Woohoo! Two blissful days with my fella!

Picture this- a man is at the beach with his son. He decides after awhile that the rest of his family is hungry and summons his son Sam to come to the car with him to grab the family cooler so everyone can have lunch. He walks ahead and Sam, who is about 9, plods along behind him. He can hear Sam behind him, his shoes crunching very softly. He stops for a moment since his son has slowed down and seems to be examining something in the sand. Sam looks up and notices his dad, then stands up and continues on.

Halfway to the car, dad looks back again. Sam isn't there. He looks across the beach- no little boy. He looks for someone who could be disguising a boy and is sneaking him away- no one. He calls Sam's name...then louder...then louder yet. No response. He begins to panic. He walks back down to his family. He's not there. At that moment in time, everything that is in this man- all his resources, everything he has learned is focused and honed in on 1 thing. His missing little boy. No amount of money is too much to try and find him. His life is about the search. Nothing else matters. Getting back Sam is the most important thing in the world to him.

God knows exactly how he feels...because God feels exactly the same way for all of His children. God is actively pursuing everyone who hasn't found him...who has turned away from Him. God is frantic. He wants them back SO badly. He's doing His very best to find them. To find you. He wants YOU. He is frantic with worry to find you. Do you know Him? Have you felt Him looking for you in your life? Consider this a little nudge...say a prayer. Just say Hello. Are you angry at God? Tell Him about it. It's okay. He can take it. Honest. Just talk to Him.

Some people say they don't know how to pray...if you can talk to other people, to a pet, or just to yourself, you can surely talk to God. It can be as informal or as formal as you like. Pray for wisdom. Pray that you are doing the right things in your life. Pray for God to help you make good decisions. Tell Him thank you. (If you think you've got nothing to be thankful for, don't be silly. If you have the ability to read this, a place to live, food to eat...etc. You've either got a computer or you have access to one somewhere...I could go on and on, but I think you get the point.) Tell Him you are scared, worried, sad, happy or whatever. Just talk to Him!

He is looking for you. Take that step and get to know Him. Please.

Have a good night everyone.

Bless you all!


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Loving the weather

Hello all,

For the past week or so in NE Pennsylvania, it has been beautiful! Cool, crisp mornings and warm sunny days slowly give way to chilly night skies. I couldn't be more thrilled! I love this "autumn-esque" weather!

So, I must ask you all- do you ever "fall off the wagon" so to speak, in one area of your life or another? I grew up in a home that never attended church. My parents both grew up going to church, but neither liked it. Neither felt it necessary to take us growing up- so I grew up a very secular kid...and turned into a secular adult. However I must say, that God's pull on me was pretty strong. I remember wanting to go to church when I was 8 or so. I'd ask my mom and she said I could walk into our village and go by myself if I liked (it was only a short walk- less maybe 1/10 of a mile) but she didn't want to go.

Yet, I still was interested...when I was in high school, my friends went to a Bible study for teens and I decided to start attending. I liked the pastor. I didn't really like what all the Bible had to say. I was not a rebellious kid. I did exactly what I was supposed to do when I was supposed to do it...and a lot of what we talked about was judgment and what I felt was ridiculously stringent guidelines. I wanted to be closer to God, but I felt like I was being pushed away at the same time.

Finally, after graduating high school, I went to a Christian College. I really liked the nice people there- after all, though I grew up in a secular home, we were still nice people. I was never a girl who wanted to go out and date a bunch of guys or go get loaded. This Christian college had the right type of people...but their Biblical knowledge compared to mine was (as you might imagine) massive. I made a lot of friends that year...and constantly felt misunderstood. How could I fit in with these people in the way that I wanted, but still be true to myself?

I could only afford to attend that school for a year, after which I went to a state college in PA. I hated it. The mindset was completely different. It was the worst few years I've ever had. I was constantly depressed and felt more and more alone. I knew God at that point in time, but didn't think that He would help me. After all, I didn't know as much as anyone else, and even though He could do something, I knew He wouldn't. There was no point in getting my hopes up.

One good thing did come out of going to that state college. I met my loving husband.

At any rate, I digress. I shared this story with you because I wonder if anyone else struggles with the same things I do.

I grew up one person and then around 5 years ago, realized I should be trying to be another person entirely. Most of the time I do pretty well, but now and again I flounder...and start cursing again.

*sigh* After a week or of swearing more than 10 times in a day, I believe I have my head on straight and can start acting the way I should again.

Sometimes it feels like the old me and the new me are in a constant battle. The old, comfy, silly Mandy has a hard time coping with the new, more serious, more exacting Mandy. New Mandy gets kind of bitter that she wasn't good enough to begin with. lol

God keeps telling me, "Just keep trying! Do your best and I'll love you no matter what!" So that's pretty comforting at any rate...

This poem was given to me a few years ago by a friend. It never fails to make me feel better. Maybe it will help you feel a little better today, too. :)

Desiderata By Max Ehrmann

Go placidly amid the noise and the haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.

As far as possible, without surrender,
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even to the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons;
they are vexatious to the spirit.

If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain or bitter,
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

Exercise caution in your business affairs,
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals,
and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Be yourself. Especially do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love,
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment,
it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.

Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be.
And whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life,
keep peace in your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Trying to beat the blahs

When wilt Thou save the people?
O God of mercy, when?

Listening to Godspell tonight and it's really making me feel so much better. I've been down in the dumps for a couple days now. It's nice to have a little break!

I'm not in much of a writing mood today, but since it's been awhile since my last post, I thought I ought to write a little bit.

- Hubby fixed the dripping faucet in the bathtub, saving me from a slow and agonizing death of being annoyed to death. lol

- After 3 weeks of being out of service, we are taking hubby's truck over to the garage tonight to get it fixed. Cross your fingers for us that it doesn't cost a fortune to fix.

- I so many dishes today, I wonder if my hands will ever unprune themselves. lol

- I made taco pizza tonight for dinner. It was good, but not great. Meh.

I think that's about all for today. I realize this post is pretty pitiful, but I'm just not really in the mood to write a lot today. I hope you understand. :)

Have a great evening and God bless you!


Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Summer Days

Hello all! It's been several days since my last post, so I decided it's probably about time to give an update!

We visited my mom and dad last weekend and had a grand time out in Western PA. I miss it out there lots. People out here don't understand that although this part of the state isn't urban, it is most assuredly not "the country" either. I have to laugh when people complain that there's nothing to do around here. I wonder how bored they would be living in Crawford County. lol

There's nothing like being at home- sitting on the deck and listening to Amish horse and buggies go by, or an occasional car. The wind rustles the leaves and the birds flit from tree to tree. My mom noted to me the other day that she has a regular little bird visitor that is a dapper fellow...he perches on the edge of a branch and hops impatiently, waiting for a bug. She loves listening to the "snap" of his beak when he gets a tasty insect. I live on a quiet street, but I couldn't hear the snapping of a bird's beak here- it's a different kind of quiet.

I'm not sure what insects are out this time of the year, but I love, love, love driving past fields in the evening- the bugs are all chirping, humming, or singing together which creates one of the nicest sounds I've ever had the pleasure to hear. It just reminds me of being young and sitting on the edge of the bed, looking out the window and listening to that same sound in the field right beside my parent's house. Oh do I miss those days!

Tonight, sitting in my room, I am listening to the hum of the fan. It occasionally buzzes, since it's on the older side. I can't really hear much else. I'm sure there would be a few crickets outside, if I were to turn off the fan. Not those field bugs, though! I wish I knew their names. I feel quite uneducated calling them "field bugs". lol

Mom made chicken on the grill (we call it Dippy Chicken- it's a type of southern BBQ sauce that goes on top- and you serve it on the side for dipping) as well as linguine salad, potato salad, and baked beans. It was perfect summer fare!

At any rate, it was a very pleasant weekend. The 5 hour drive home wasn't quite as pleasant, but it was tolerable! lol

My busyness for this week is over (I hope). I threw a baby shower at work today for my friend Kristin who is due in September. It was a pretty nice time- definitely worth all the stress. I think she got a lot of great items for Liam (the new baby's name) and lots of practical stuff, too. We had a potluck as well, entitled "Appetizers in August" which was fun. It was odd eating an entire meal of finger food, but no one complained because it was all so tasty! There was cake and soda as well. We ate well.

The past couple days I've been feeling kind of down in the dumps. Tonight isn't so bad, but earlier I was really feeling grouchy and sad. I took a walk and it did help some. It is frustrating being away from my husband day after day. I mean, we live in the same house, but since he works when I'm at home and I work when he's at home, we see each other only on the weekends. I don't really go out anywhere without him, so I basically work, come home, cook, clean, go to bed, and then wake up and do it all over again. Can you see how the monotony would get tiresome?

At any rate, we've only got Thursday and Friday to wait through, then it'll be the weekend again! Woohoo!

I hope your week is going well. I know a lot of folks are still having very hot, humid, and dry weather. Keeping you guys in my prayers- I do not like incredibly hot weather. It just sucks the life right outta me!

Oh, and as you can see, that cucumber did not kill me. It did leave a bad taste in my mouth for quite awhile, though...even after brushing my teeth! lol!

Have a great night, and bless you all!


Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Well...that didn't work

So, I thought taking a little time to think and figure out where I wanted this blog to go might be a pretty good idea.

As it turns out, I am really not good at organizing, following any kind of a set plan or format, or doing much of anything structured that needs to be initiated by myself.

After praying about it a bit, I was washing dishes at the sink tonight, and this is what God had to say to me. (Now, I'm paraphrasing here, you know...)

God-"Mandy, why do you think I made you the way I did?"
Me- "I don't know...why?"
God- "Basically because I thought the world needed someone like you...just like you. So I made you the way I know you needed to be made. Why are you trying to fit in with all these other blogs? How often do you usually follow everyone else? That's one of the things that I love about you- your randomness is part of who you are. People like it. I like it."
Me- "So, I guess I should just keep the blog like it is for now, and write down my random thoughts?"
God- "If it isn't broken..."
Me- "Gotcha."

So, there you have it. For the time being, this will continue to just be a reflection of me- sometimes happy, sometimes sad, usually silly, a bit spiritual, a little quirky, and a whole lotta Mandy.

If this happens to be my last post, don't be surprised. I ate a bite of a cucumber tonight that tasted like poison. I've never tasted anything like it before. I spit it out...and then kept spitting cause the bad taste wouldn't go away. Yuck. I have no idea what was wrong with those cucumbers, but if I end up dead, blame them.

In other news, I dug out some of my old "Quick Cooking" magazines by Taste of Home and am making a different recipe each day.

Yesterday's Southwestern Spaghetti was easily 4/5 stars. It was tasty, easy, and super good.

Today's Chicken and Veggie Bake gets maybe 2 and a half/5 stars. It was kind of dry, the veggies didn't want to cook since there wasn't much liquid, and it was lacking...something. I don't know what.

Here's the recipe for Southwestern Spaghetti. It's super good.

Brown 3/4 pound of ground beef. Drain and set aside. In the same pan, add 2 1/4 cups of water, 1 15 oz can of tomato sauce, 1/2 tsp cumin, 1/2 tsp garlic powder, 2 tsp chili seasoning- stir together and bring to a boil then add 7 oz of spaghetti, broken into smaller pieces (I broke the noodles into thirds). Bring to a boil again, then lower heat to medium low and let cook about 7-8 minutes. While that's cooking, chop up 2 good sized zucchini (about a pound all together) and then stir that in. Let cook another 5-6 minutes or till zucchini are tender. Stir in the ground beef and top with some shredded cheddar. Voila! Deliciousness in a pan.

Now I sorta want some more, even though it's all gone and it's 10:21 PM. Dang.

I watched a couple episodes of "Christy" tonight. I love that show sooo much!

Well, it is getting late and I still need to go through a couple magazines scouring for next week's recipes, so I probably ought to be off for the evening.

I hope you are doing well and having a good day.

You are loved, appreciated, and needed. God wanted you to know that. :)

Bless you all!


Monday, July 25, 2011

Quick little update

I haven't posted anything for a few days, mostly because I'm trying to think about what kind of a format I'd actually like to have on here- me rambling on and on isn't exactly going to be a riveting blog that people can't put down. lol I lead a pretty routine life- it's not as though exciting things are happening here daily.

Basically, I have been trying to think carefully about what I want to put on here- I know exactly who I am and I'm trying to turn that (somehow) into something that can benefit others- either by encouragement, silliness, or just taking their minds off of whatever they are going through for a few minutes.

Welcome, DeNiece, my newest follower! :) Thank you for joining me!

Tonight I am feeling so thankful and happy. I glanced at my purse tonight and thought, "Boy, you've been carrying this bag for awhile, maybe you should change that purse and wallet."

That made me think- not only am I super lucky to have several purses to pick from, but also- I have a need for a purse. Think about all the women around the world who would have absolutely no need for a purse- because they own nothing to put in it. Not only do I have a purse FULL (and I mean full) of items that are convenient and make my life easier, but I have several purses to choose from to put said items in. How lucky am I??? Thank you God for all your abundant blessings!

I hope you're all having a good start to your week. I'll see if I can't figure out some sort of a game plan and format figured out for this little blog within the next day or so! :)

Till then, may God bless you all!!


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Wireless connection problem

Well, I am writing this at our desktop computer tonight because, for one reason or another, I can't get my laptop to connect to the internet. It's connected to the network, but no matter how much I turn the little verizon box on and off, restart the laptop, or shut it down and start over, it just won't connect. I don't know if something is wrong with it, or if something is wrong with the

Today was a pretty good day. I came home from work, took all the CD's out of my car, organized them, put them back in a nice neat order, did a load of laundry, dried it, put it away, made supper, and here I am now. All while it was 93 degrees outside! Woohoo!

I think Sunday is the last day of temps in the 90's or 100's. I look forward to a break.

Have you noticed the days getting shorter? I think I just started really noticing yesterday or so. It doesn't bother me very much- shorter days mean fall is a comin!

I am eagerly anticipating getting the manual for my sewing machine. I sent away for it a few weeks ago- the machine is in pristine condition. I would say it's probably from the mid 1960's. I sewed an apron with it last month, but now my bobbin has ran out of thread. I'm fairly confident I can rewind it without the instructions...but I'm just going to be patient and wait! lol I'm a bit of a wuss when it comes to not being sure about something. I want to make very certain that I'm not messing anything up.

This weekend starts the Orangeville Fireman's Carnival over in (you guessed it) Orangeville. I hope that hubby and I have the opportunity to go over. They have the absolute yummiest homemade ice cream I've ever had! Last year I believe I got peanut butter and it was positively dreamy. I am hoping for decent weather- if it's 100 degrees, my ice cream will melt before I can even eat it! lol

I think that about does it for today.

God bless you, my friends. Have a good evening.


Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Another warm day!

I read over the last few posts I've made and realized that I don't have much of a rhyme or reason to my blog. I pretty much just talk about whatever is on my mind.

What's on my mind tonight is that I am warm! Thankfully, I am now tucked upstairs in my bedroom- which is equipped with an air-conditioner. Things in the room aren't so bad! The rest of the house is holding steady at about 85 degrees and quite humid. I would open up the windows, but there's really no point right now. It's about the same outside and there's not much of a breeze. I didn't really see the weather, but I believe today's high was somewhere around 94. I heard Friday's high is going to be around 101. I can't wait for that. lol

Here are a list of things that are currently worrying me:

My husband's truck- the transmission is slipping like nobody's business. We cannot afford to fix it right this minute. Since it's a 4x4, it'll probably cost somewhere in the neighborhood of 2500-3000 for a rebuild. I'm not looking forward to that bill.

My car- fan belt still squeals, even though we just had the tension arm replaced. Granted, the guy did say that there was some sort of belt dressing on the fan belt itself that might take some time to wear off, but I don't like it. It never happened before my dad changed the belt.

Also my car- tonight when leaving, the lights brightened and came back down again. Same thing happened when I pulled into my space along the street, making me wonder if the alternator is going bad again. I think it's got a lifetime replacement, but for heaven's sakes. It was just changed in November.

Trip to Maine- driving up there worries me. The trip itself (traffic) worries me. Once we are there I will have fun. Till then...I'm really really good at worrying.

Saving up enough money for the trip while being responsible and laying aside plenty to fix Scott's transmission.

That's about all for right now. It seems to be all financial concerns, with the exception of traffic while traveling up to Maine in September. I'm praying about all of it. I feel like that's about all I can do right now.

I like owls. That's really off the subject and whatnot, but it's true. I think owls are really cute. I like listening to them at night. I like their weird owl pellets.

I just got my newest issue of "Family Life" magazine. For those of you unfamiliar with it, it's an Old-Order Amish publication that comes 11 times a year. It's filled with stories, poems, advice, and a few recipes. I've been receiving it about 6 months now and I find it pretty interesting. I never do well on the "Test Your German" Quiz. lol

Some days I don't feel like I can possibly be 32. Other days I feel about a decade older.

Welcome Pauline, my newest subscriber! Thank you for joining me here. :) It is most appreciated.

On to the actual home-making for today. I came home from my boss's pampered chef party around 9:30 or so and got down to business. I did clean up the bathroom, I washed the dishes, ironed some clothes and sorted some laundry for tomorrow. I also went outside and gave my plants a nice drink. I'm sure they needed it!!

I think that's about all for today. I'd like to leave you with something that encourages me. Some days we all need a little encouragement.

Jeremiah 29:11
"For I know the plans I have for you," says the Lord. "They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope." (NLT)

You have hope in God. He loves you. I say that He loves you pretty often, but it doesn't make it any less true. I want that to get through permeate you...because that's the truth of the matter. No matter what you do, God LOVES you. Check out what He wants for you- does He want a life of worry and sorrows for you? Nope. He has plans that are good- they bring you a future and hope. So don't give up. Things might be tough for you right now. It's okay. God's got this one. Just give your problems to Him. He'll work a miracle right in front of your eyes. He does it everyday. Have hope, friend. Take heart. God is on your side...come join Him.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Pie- delicious pie

So, I made a pie tonight. I suppose there's nothing too awful exciting about that. I like pie...I bet you do, too. The real problem here, is that it was about 92 degrees outside the house and about 81 degrees inside the house. That was before I had the oven turned on to 425 for an hour or so. Phew. Talk about a hot space.

Pretty much as soon as the pie came out of the oven, I decided I needed some relief. I came up to our bedroom and turned on the air conditioner. Much, much better. I can't tell you how much better...just...much.

As for the pie, it's delicious! I had a slice a few minutes ago and I'm pleased with the result. I made a strawberry-rhubarb pie since my friend Jamie brought in some rhubarb for me. I know it's a little late in the season, but it was delicious. No complaints here!

So, other than my pie-making skills, I really didn't do a whole heck of a lot tonight. Oh, wait. I took that nap on the couch for an hour or so. That was pretty productive. Is it just me, or do you have a hard time getting stuff done when it's a balmy 85 in the kitchen? Hubby was wonderful and did the dishes today, so that's something I don't really have to worry much about. I used a skillet to make dinner tonight and then I have the mixing bowl and wooden spoon and a measuring cup to wash. Not too bad. I think those dishes can safely wait till tomorrow to wash.

I believe that tomorrow is going to be "Let's clean the bathroom" day. Hurray. Huzzah. There will be great rejoicing. Okay, there will not be. But hey, it needs done and that toilet isn't going to clean itself! Trust me.

I find it hard to understand why I am able to have such great enthusiasm for housekeeping when I am sitting at my desk trying to work, but once I get home, I act as though I've been chopping down trees all day and am sapped of any and all life sustaining forces. I guess it IS pretty tough sitting at a desk all day. Sheesh. What do you want from me? lol

I planned a week of easy meals since I knew it was going to be scorching hot for the next few days.

Monday- Red beans and rice with turkey sausage, mixed veggies
Tuesday- Turkey/Spinach lasagna (pre-made, from WalMart), salad
Wednesday- Salmon, mashed sweet potatoes, green beans
Thursday- Flatbread pizzas
Friday- leftovers/whatever you can dig out of the pantry or fridge

There you have it! Easy-peasy-one-two-threesy!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Relaxing weekend

Tonight ends a very relaxing weekend.

Saturday hubby got up at the crack of dawn and went out fishing with his dad and his twin brother on the river. He came home around 12:00 and we went to the grocery store since we were going back to his dad's and step-mom's house for a picnic around 4:00. I made crockpot beans- see recipe below. And I also brought a cheese-cake style dip with fresh strawberries for dipping. Wayne and Karen made steak on the grill, fish, potato salad, mac and cheese, a relish tray among many other good things to eat. After chowing down, we all took a dip in the pool. It was a nice day. :)

Today, hubby slept in too late so we didn't make it to church (boo!). We got a call from Wayne and Karen again, asking us to come back for another picnic and more swimming, so that's what we did. I stopped at a farmer's stand and picked up some sweet corn and it was delicious! First good corn of the season, as far as I'm concerned. We had more steak (Wayne thawed out way too many steaks the first day and needed to cook the rest of the them.) Then swam around in the pool some more.

We left around 4:00 and went over to the Columbia mall. I found a new pair of sneakers (New Balance) on clearance from 85 dollars down to 25! Woohoo!

We left the mall and went to Walmart where I bought groceries and then ate a fast dinner out at Quaker Steak and Lube. My salad there was plentiful and amazing! After coming home, we unpacked our groceries and took a relaxing walk around town.

It was a great day!

We are a little bit sunburned, even though we both applied liberal layers of sunscreen, but getting cooled off in the water was very worth it. :)

Here is the recipe for Crockpot Beans (or Mandy beans, as Wayne likes to call them)

1 large can baked beans (I use Bush's)
1 can lima beans
1 can kidney beans
1/2 pd. ground beef
1 med. onion, diced
1/2 pound bacon, cooked and crumbled
1/3 c. ketchup
1/4 c. brown sugar
1 T. cider vingegar

Fry hamburger and onion together, chopping up big chunks of meat. Drain. Add with the rest of ingredients to crock pot and stir. Cook on low for 1 or 2 hours.

Feel free to up the ante with the ketchup or brown sugar. Honestly, I don't measure at all anymore. I just dump in what seems right and go by taste.

Friday, July 15, 2011


I decided tonight that I might try and re-read all of the Narnia books. I read them once before, when I got this massive tome about 4 years ago. It's all 7 books combined. I know there's a lot of debate about what goes first and so on and so forth, but I don't mind so much about order. I just want to read them.

"The Magician's Nephew" is the first in my all-bound-together set. If you haven't read the books, I really recommend them. I am 32. I never read these when I was younger, but I love them and find them so comforting. They are lively and fun, filled with awe, sadness, happiness, and love. Aslan, the lion, is God. It is Aslan who spoke this in the story. I thought I might share it with you.

"But I cannot tell that to this old sinner, and I cannot comfort him either; he has made himself unable to hear my voice. ... Oh Adam's sons, how cleverly you defend yourselves against all that might do you good!"

Call me crazy, but I really feel that God was speaking through C S Lewis when he wrote that. It's so very true! I put up borders all around myself- even from God who loves me! That line was a real wake-up call for me!

Something to ponder: Have you ever put a wall up in between yourself and God?

Other than reading tonight, I've really not done much. Really. I've been very lazy today. I got home, heated up leftovers for dinner, emptied the trash, washed out the trashcan with bleach, did a load of laundry hung it up, plopped down on the couch and watched tv/started reading till the laundry was dry, folded it, then read some more. lol

Oh wait. I folded my Wal-Mart bags. Well, maybe the first half of the evening wasn't too bad. I went down and got the mail, too. I guess I'm just thinking of that huge stack of dishes that I just do NOT want to do. There they sit. They will be there tomorrow.

Some motivation, right? I should be jumping for joy that we have so many dirty dishes. You know what they say...dirty dishes means full bellies. Lots of people aren't blessed with the variety and quantity of food we have here. They would be grateful for a sink of dishes to wash.

Man, I am getting way too philosophical tonight. I need to cut it out. lol

We really don't have much planned for the weekend. Hubby is supposed to go out with his dad tomorrow morning and fish and then we're going to my in-laws for a birthday picnic for my FIL around 4:00. I'm a little bit sad that hubby will be gone in the morning, but I think I can let him be for a little while. Okay, I'm more than a little bit sad. I don't want him to go at all, but I'm not ever going to say that. lol I only get him 2 days a week and I'm very selfish with that time. He can go fish on the river in the morning with his dad any day of the week!

Oh well. Such is life.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Yankee Candles!

I received the Yankee Candles that I ordered last week. Woohoo! Unfortunately for me, I did not take an allergy pill today, so just taking the candles out of the box made me all sniffly and made my eyes itchy. For Pete's sakes, it's pretty pathetic when you can't even bear the scent of the candles encased within a cardboard box. It's days like these that I realize how pathetic my body is. lol

Our weather here in PA has been absolutely gorgeous these past few days. It's been in the low 80's with no humidity and beautiful blue skies. Right now I have the windows open and the window fan on and I am perfectly comfy and happy. Hurray!

I made burgers that my hubby requested this week. Basically I chopped up about 4 baby bella mushrooms and chopped up some cheddar cheese and mixed both of those ingredients in with some ground beef, salt, pepper, and a couple shakes of a steak seasoning that we both like. They were pretty good. The cheese made quite a mess in the bottom of the frying pan, but luckily for me, I only have non-stick pans, so once I fill it up with water and let it soak it'll be fine.

Our garbage smells really really bad right now. I want to put it on the porch, but I'm afraid that animals will get into it and then I'll have to pick up the spilled garbage. At this point, I'm not exactly sure which is grosser- picking up garbage, or having to smell it. If hubby hadn't taken our can down to his dad's house, my problem would be solved. lol

I did not get a nap today, which means that it's only 10:10 and I am exhausted- which is great news! Not so great if you're hoping for a really long, rambling post. I'm pretty sure that no one is hoping for that. lol

Before I sign off, if you are so inclined, I would appreciate your prayers for my dad. He was admitted to the hospital this afternoon and needs to have a stress test tomorrow. He's been having chest pain for like 3 weeks now and didn't want to tell anyone about it until now. His Dr. yelled at him a lot, which I kind of find funny. They don't think it's anything too bad, but they're doing a good work up just to make sure.

Thanks so much everyone. I hope that your day was a good one. We're almost to the weekend! :)

God bless you!


Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Napping rut!

I've found that I really need to ditch this whole napping when I get home from work thing that I'm stuck in. Basically, I'll come home and do a little tidying up when I get incredibly tired. Naturally, I lay down on the couch...and then I end up sleeping. Usually between 5 and 6, but today I slept longer...till almost 7:00. Now it is 11:40 PM and I am wide awake while I should be in my cozy bed snoozing away.

Technically, I am in my cozy bed. I am not snoozing away, though. I'm typing this blog post instead. lol

Tonight I did some ironing that needed done. Do you iron anything? I try not to, but some of our pants and hubby's church shirts really do need to be ironed or we walk into work or church looking like we're Boxcar Willy or something. lol

I'm both pleased and saddened to report that our mouse has been "taken care of". lol I didn't see it, but hubby emptied the trap this morning. We've had no other victims yet. Time will tell if he was a loner or a family mouse.

I watched the Chrissa American Girl movie on You Tube tonight. It was really cute. I recognized the teacher immediately, but I couldn't place from where. At the end of the film, I caught his name in the credits, so I typed it into Yahoo and found out where I knew him from-- he used to be on a show I loved as a kid called SeaQuest, DSV. The show was...well, honestly SeaQuest was great for kids. As an adult, not so great. I think you know what I mean. It was on Sunday nights when I was about 13. I thought Jonathan Brandis was the bees knees! lol

This has been quite a week at the office. I think it's sort of showing in the lack of amount of stuff I've gotten done at home. Our servers were switched from Portland, Oregon to where are new headquarters in in Herndon, VA. Oh my. Talk about a pain in the neck. Today I was finally able to do most of the things that I normally do. Our poor IT guy is running around trying to fix everyone's computer since everyone has something wrong with theirs. A smooth transition it was not. Perhaps that is why I'm napping this week. I'm exhausted!

I am starting to think about autumn already. It's only the middle of July and I'm thinking about cool, crisp nights, big harvest moons, apples, pumpkins, and the like!

Do you start Christmas shopping early, or do you wait till closer to the season? Pretty much as soon as they start rolling out the warmer weather clothing, I start buying. We're not like destitute or anything, but we're certainly not swimming in wealth, either. If I start early and buy now, I can get most of it taken care of so that when we need all the odds and ends and stuff I forgot, it's not such a big deal. Just make a list of the people you buy for and start jotting down ideas. Keep it in your purse. When you're in the store, take a look around and see if there's anything you like (on sale is better yet) for those people.

I hope that today was a good day for you. Mine wasn't too bad. It was just sort of okay. I think it's very easy to get caught up in the "eh" days. Each day that we are here is an opportunity to learn and grow and get closer to God. Whether we take that opportunity or not remains to be seen. I'm afraid I didn't do all that well today. My mind was a million miles away. I did listen the Bible today at CBN, but other than that, I don't believe I've prayed much today. I will be sure and remedy that as soon as I am done posting. I will say a prayer for you, too, my friend and reader. Take care of yourself. :)


Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Mouse in the house!

I'm just sort of experimenting what I can do with blogger. I am so envious of all of you out there that have beautiful blogs. If anyone would be so kind as to share how to gussy up my blog (or suggest websites with wallpapers or directions) I would be very grateful indeed. This photo is a picture of hubby and I after we took a ride on the "Hiawatha" boat in Williamsport, PA. We went again last weekend, when my mom and dad came out to visit us. It's a nice hour ride up and down the Susquehanna River. :)

So...on to my actual post for today-

Goodness gracious! I was just down in my kitchen putting away dishes that I had washed a little earlier when I thought I saw a small shadow out of the corner of my eye. As I looked over, rather warily, a small field mouse (you know- with the great big eyes!) popped up and stood on my toaster! I jumped back a step and said "Hey! You can't be in here!", to which he turned around and flew across the counter top, over the washer and dryer, and down the side of the rack where we keep our towels. He then decided to camp out under my washing machine, which was a pretty happy medium for both of us, as far as I'm concerned.

I went down to the basement, brought up the 2 traps we have, and scribbled a note to hubby. I feel bad killing him, but he just can NOT be in the house. It's just not an option. The first time I find his little mouse pellets, there will be no more sympathy. lol

I found a Nancy Drew book on my bookshelf yesterday and just for fun, decided to read it. What a find! Oh, I so loved Nancy when I was younger. I loved her adventures, her lady-like demeanor, and her knack for solving mysteries. I identified with Bess more than any of the characters- I am a scaredy cat, too! The book mentioned several delicious meals that the girls ate while solving the mystery, as well as good details about the clothing they wore. Part of why I loved Nancy when I was in my teens is that she was sort of dated. Even then, I loved the 50's and early to mid 60's clothing for women. Dresses were popular and although Nancy occasionally donned slacks, she more often than not was seen in a stylish dress on the arm of popular Ned Nickerson from Emerson college. Reading this one has inspired me to try and find my old collection and re-read the ones I can find. I remember especially liking "The Mystery of Shadow Ranch" so I'm hoping I still have it somewhere.

I am doing CBN's "Bible in a Year" and I'm in the middle of Acts. I like that Paul writes that the Athenians seem to do nothing except talking over the latest ideas. It makes me smile. It's funny when you can tie the Bible in so readily with something you remember from history class.

I've been doing a lot of thinking about God, and trying to please God this week, but I haven't actually been praying very much. I feel like I don't have much to say right now...just feeling quiet. Lots of other times, I'm sure he wishes I would just stop talking, already. lol

If you are new to praying, I would recommend you just start talking to God like you would talk to your friend- thank Him for the good things in your life, ask Him for help if you are worried or scared about something, and ask Him for guidance in your life. He wants you to talk to Him. Honest, He does! He cares about what you are thinking about, afraid of, and happy for. God loves hearing from His kids. :)

I hope your day was a good one and that your night is a peaceful one.

Bless you, my friends!


Monday, July 11, 2011

Monday, Monday...

Another Monday has come and gone.

There are plenty of things I could talk about tonight, but what I really want to focus on this week is meal planning. Do you meal plan? It makes grocery shopping so much easier, as well as figuring out exactly what your family will be eating all week. It's really not so hard, especially if you have a few dishes you make pretty often and know what you need for them. Here is the menu I drew out for this week:

Monday- Meat loaf, mashed potatoes, green beans, bread and butter (I forgot to buy green beans so I settled for corn, which is another starch, but oh well lol)
Tuesday- Honey mustard chicken, rice mix, steamed broccoli
Wednesday- "stuffed" burgers (hubby's request- chopped up mushroom pieces and cheese mixed with ground beef and seasonings, then grilled) homemade baked fries
Thursday- red beans and rice with turkey sausage (Vigo mix- they suggested the smoked sausage to make it a meal) peas, and lots of water since that rice stuff is loaded with salt lol!
Friday- Salmon patties, mac and cheese, stewed tomatoes
Saturday- Grilled chicken sandwiches, salad
Sunday- Pork tenderloin (on the grill), corn and zucchini grilled in foil packets, texas toast, potato salad

Lunches for this week-

Turkey sandwiches, chicken salad or tuna salad sandwiches, "salad plate" (spinach, a scoop of tuna salad, a scoop of cottage cheese, strawberries and blueberries), or one of the TV dinners in the freezer.

If you take the time to plan what you're going to have, it really does make life so much easier. Sometimes I hate doing it, but I'm never at a loss for what to pack or what to make for supper when I do!

Take the time and give it a try this week!

You can do it!

God bless you! :)


Sunday, July 10, 2011

Sunday events

A bug just dropped off the ceiling and onto my monitor. Ordinarily I wouldn't mind, but it's dark in our bedroom with the exception of the light from the monitor. I wasn't amused by this long-ish beetle's surprise pop in. I gently gathered him in a tissue, wrapped him up, and thought "Good luck getting out of there, buddy." Ten minutes later, the same bug does the same thing and startled me again. When I say startle, I mean just that. I'm not really one to get bent out of shape over a bug...or a snake or bees or much of anything. I will give out a little holler if a mouse darts past, but it's not so much that I'm afraid of the's just that I wasn't expecting it and I jumped. I think you know what I am saying.

At any rate, after he dropped in on me the 2nd time, I got the same tissue from the garbage can (he wasn't in there, I made sure that he didn't have a friend hanging around, and squashed him. Sorry pal.

Our sermon in church today was about Joshua's leadership role after Moses died. Our pastor noted that the words strong and courageous are in the Bible a bunch of times. He noted that as Christians, that's what we need to be for Jesus- strong and courageous, pursuing him and allowing him to transform our lives.

He also talked about free when you go to Sam's Club. lol He said every time that something amazing and wonderful happens to you on Earth and you feel incredibly happy, it's like God giving you a free sample of what being in Heaven will be like (actually, I think he said it's like a shadow or a glimmer of what it will really be like) and that these free samples are to do what? To get us to buy the whole box- aka to get us to trust and love and accept Jesus as fully as we possibly can.

I really liked that analogy.

After church, we went out to eat for a "Farmer's Feast" at a nearby local farm market. It was soo incredibly delicious! They had fried chicken, baked chicken, oven browned potatoes, ham, homemade Italian sausage with peppers and onions, homemade (the best I've ever had) pierogies, mixed veggies, salad, coleslaw, pepper slaw, fruit salad, and fresh corn on the cob. There was ice cream and lemon pound cake for dessert. The price (which was a little less than 10 dollars) also included iced tea, lemonade, coffee, juice, water, and hot tea. It was an amazing value and the best meal I've had in a very very long time.

We came home and frankly just laid around like the stuffed pigs we were for an hour or so. After a bit of rest, we decided to go down and swim at my father-in-law and mother-in-law's house since they said we were welcome to go. It was so refreshing and relaxing!

After that, we popped in to drop my car off at the mechanic's house and then ran past Weis markets for some groceries.

I'm sure you are thrilled to read the play-by-play of my day. lol

Take care of yourself and I'll try to come up with some better reading material for tomorrow. :)

God Bless you!!!



Late night blogging

Well, despite whatever time the bottom of this post informs you that it is, allow me to assure you that it is rather late. 12:54 AM to be exact...making this post technically a Sunday post, however, I'm still awake from Saturday, so I'll stick with it being a late evening Saturday post.

Hubby and I just got home from night fishing up at a local park called Montour Preserve. We didn't have a whole heck of a lot of success fishing and his truck's transmission is slowly dying, so I was a nervous wreck going there, sitting in the boat, and then going home. The transmission slips going into certain gears. It leaves my heart in my throat every time. I feel that we shouldn't be driving it at all right now, but hubby assures me that even though it slips, we will make it there and back just fine. I refuse to believe him. lol

In all seriousness, though, I have such a hard time with trust. God wants us to trust Him. He wants us to not worry so much about our day to day lives. When we were in the boat, he even showed me an example.

There is a coal burning power plant close to the park- you can see the big cooling towers as well as the big smoke stack with the scrubber on it. There are 2 towers and 1 stack. One of the towers had steam rising out of it, the lights lit merrily, and the stack beside it was also busy chugging out steam. The tower on the left was cold, dark, and didn't have any steam coming out of it. It's parts were all there. It had the ability to function. But it wasn't! I saw myself in that tower- and you might be able to, too! God gives each of us gifts...the scrubber and the tower were using their gifts and working perfectly. The other tower...well he was afraid. "What if I don't do this right? What if I don't cool the water the right way? What will people think of me? How can I deal with that humiliation? No, I'd better not try."

Do you see the point here? If that tower was running, more electricity could be generated...more people would have something valuable in their lives. The same is true for you and I. Get out there and use those gifts that God has so richly blessed you with. You just need to trust that He will guide you and show you the proper way to use them. Pray for guidance. Actually...just pray for any and everything. God loves hearing from you. He loves you so much. :)

Well, I suppose that's all for tonight. I feel like I was supposed to write this post, however awkward it may have sounded. I hope that it will be of help to someone out there.

Good evening and have a blessed night everyone! :)


Friday, July 8, 2011

A quiet day at home

You know, I think there is something to be said for a rather quiet day at home. Not all the time, mind you, but staying at home and getting caught up on chores and such really can make for an enjoyable day. Now, I'm not saying that I dance for joy when it's time to mop the floors, but I love the feeling of accomplishment I get when my home looks clean, tidy, and cozy. It seems like the day is a little sweeter and it's certainly nicer to be in a clean house than a dirty one.

I'm going to make up a schedule so things don't get done so sporadically around here. You know, like those old tea towels? Wash on Monday, Iron on Tuesday, etc. I don't plan on having a butter churning day and I really don't have THAT many clothes that need ironed. It's much more difficult for us to put the clothes away than it is to iron them.

Our closets here are sub-par to say the least. You know those little closets that old houses have with hooks in them? Well, that might have been plenty of room in 1915 when the house was built (I'm guessing here, we rent and I don't really know the exact building date) but in 2011, it's not quite enough space. I have 1 bar that's about 2 feet long to hang stuff on. I should say I "had" since hubby squeezed a tiny closet organizer into that space. Now I have 2 extra racks there are about a foot long each. It's not great, but it's better than that itty-bitty bar and a couple of hooks. (The hooks hold my nightgowns, by the way. They haven't gone to waste!)

I like bed spreads and quilts. When I see one I like, I really want to get it. Now, I don't need it, mind you, and certainly do NOT have the space for it...but that doesn't make me want it any less. I think I have 6 or 7 comforters right now. For 2 people with 1 bed. Now, granted, I mean some are much warmer than others...we used 1 in particular when we go camping only... Our home has exactly 1 closet other than the itty bitty ones in our bedroom. It is filled with coats...and board games and the vacuum, and...oh, well you get the picture. That poor little closet is nearly bursting with things we just didn't have place for. My comforters are on an interesting wire racking system that is supposed to serve (I think) as a pantry shelving unit. I think I need to get some space bags and throw them in the attic. The problem with that is that I tend to forget I own something unless I can see it in plain site. Maybe I need to make an inventory and hang that somewhere. lol

Something else I love? Scented candles. I love them. I am also very allergic to them. I burn them for half an hour and I'm sick for a week. Why then, do I keep buying them? Because they smell good! lol A glutton for punishment, am I. I just ordered some from Yankee Candle's "Jarnormous" sale. I think I got Cinnamon and Sugar, Country Lemonade, and uh...something else too. Oh, oh! Juicy Watermelon! That's it! Hopefully if I leave the windows open I will be able to burn some of these bad boys and make my house smell nice. Our house probably smells like...I don't know, dust or just plain bland air most of the time. Nothing warm and homey and nice like a scented candle. Of course, when my house smells bland I am also able to breathe easily and don't need to keep dabbing at my constantly dripping eyes, soo....

It's rainy out right now and a pretty comfortable temperature. Our neighbor's dog is barking. He's a medium sized dog, so it's okay. lol He doesn't bark a lot. My next door neighbors have 3 small and very yappy dogs. Ohhh. Those dogs drive me up the wall. They bark constantly when they are outside, which, thankfully, isn't more than an hour or so a day. I'm counting my blessings on that one. Some days I just want to turn the hose on them. lol

I watched 2 American Girl movies on You Tube today. Samantha's Movie and Molly's movie. I wanted nothing more than Kirsten, Molly, and Samantha as a kid. Unfortunately, my mom and dad just didn't have the means to provide me with one. My husband bought me a Kirsten doll when we got married back in 2004. It was a very sweet gesture, but since I'm all grown up now, I only get her out of the box occasionally. I still love her and am glad I have her. My hubby is thoughtful. :)

So, I think I started this out by saying I did some house work today...I did! I cleaned the bathroom (including dusting and all that jazz), swept and mopped the floor, scrubbed the tub, cleaned the toilet and sink, then moved onto the kitchen and scrubbed up the stove top, cleaned out the microwave, swept and mopped the floor, dusted the ceiling fan and all the other corners of the kitchen (thanks to my extendable "Webster" duster), did a load of laundry, swept of the front and side porch...and that's about it. I had a TV dinner for supper. Michelina's value-time-only-one-dollar-and-twenty-five-cents-special. Let me tell you. It tasted like it cost 1.25, too. lol

On that note, I believe I'll leave you all tonight.

Take care everyone, and God bless you!



Thursday, July 7, 2011

It's been a long time!

It's been such a very long time since I've posted anything. I just went through about a half hour's worth of searching all my email accounts to figure out exactly which account I used and what magical password I made up to protect it! Whew.

I am going to try very hard to keep this little blog up. I've had a lot to say lately, and it seems like this might be a good place to write those random thoughts down.

I've been feeling very domestic this week- I've been cooking a lot, despite the house being hotter than the blazes! Tonight I made pan fried chicken slices with mushroom risotto. It wasn't as good as I wanted it to be. lol

I did, however, make an incredible pasta dish on Tuesday night, which I got from the Pioneer Woman. It was called Pasta with Blue-Cheese Tomato sauce and I believe it's under the April 28, 2010 post on her blog. It was muy bien, but a little goes a long way. It was very rich!

Other than cooking, I've been trying to keep the house in proper order. I stripped the bed tonight, washed and dried the sheets and the bedspread (I hung them out on the line and they smell so sunshiny fresh!) then changed the bedspread to a new one I picked up on clearance at Wal-Mart. It's a pretty patriotic red, white and blue with a big beautiful star in the middle of it. It's one of those Better Homes and Garden ones that comes in its own tote bag.

If you have one and want to remember how to fold it, it goes in half long ways, then in half again. Now fold into thirds (folding ends up to the middle) then it gets folded in half and jammed back into the tote bag. lol It'll fit, honest! I went ahead and bought the King size even though we have a queen bed. My hubby tends to tuck the covers under his arm and roll around, so I'm lucky if I have something on me by morning. Anyone else have that problem? lol

God has been blessing me in many ways- I've been pretty organized (well, for me that is) and have had a pretty easy time of keeping things on lists and getting the tasks on those lists done. Success!

I have a problem with a lot of drivers on the road. See, I go the speed limit. Always. It's not an option to not go the speed limit. People where I live seem to see the speed limit as a challenge... Maybe they're thinking, "I can go way faster than 50 here!" Or "I want to get home already! 50 isn't going to get me there fast enough!" Perhaps they are thinking, "Come on! I'm late for work already!"

My response has pretty much always been the same. I could care less. lol The law is the law and I'm not breaking it because you have an agenda. I get so tired of being tailgated day after day.

I actually get really angry some days. I want these people to wreck and crash their cars and understand what they are doing is WRONG. I want to make an example of them. What I need to do is try to be sympathetic and understanding and extend a gracious nod their way. It's really hard. Really really hard. I don't think anyone can understand how hard it is. lol But with God's help, I am trying with varying levels of success to be kind and not immediately get angry and annoyed. I'm making progress. Hopefully some day I won't mind a bit.

It's July and we're in the throes of fishing season which means I'm sitting in our 14 foot fishing boat quite a few weekends. We've had decent luck this year in our fishing. I must say, though, we are "catch and release" fisherman, for the most part. I'm not a huge fan of fish. I'll eat it, but I'm not a fan of eating something that I personally killed. I wouldn't last long as a pioneer woman.

We had a sermon a few weeks ago on fasting and how it doesn't necessarily have to involve food. I am planning on doing a TV fast in the near future. I think I'll start small- 1 day/week. After that, if I don't mind the quiet house too much (remember, my hubby works 2nd shift and I work 1st, so I'm home alone every night and the TV is my "company") I'll work up to 2 or 3 days per week as a regular thing.

Well, I believe that's about all for today. Again, I am going to try and update this little blog about 3 times a week so hopefully I'll be back soon with more to talk about.

Take care, God bless you, and have a great day!