Sunday, December 26, 2010

Logans First Christmas

Logan has such a rough life, he spends the day entertaining his grandparents. Growing, eating,talking and making life so wonderful for those who are blessed to be around him.
In his spare time, he is a superhero! He has several costumes,but Superman is his favorite. He goes about doing good all day long. He makes complete strangers smile and lifts the spirits of everyone around him. Whew! Its tough being in demand so much of the time.

At night, he is just tuckered out. Mickey keeps him warm while he dreams of all the adventures he will have another day.
What fun we had yesterday! Our family is completely in love with this little squidgy, soft bundle of joy. He made our Christmas very special and certainly one to always remember! Enjoy your weekend.


Sunday, December 12, 2010

Fruitcake Flop!

Sorry it has been so long since my last post. My computer was never recovered and finally had to buy one today. I have been in a baking frenzy today. I have made 3 batches of cookies, a big pot of soup and another attempt at the traditional fruitcake.

My mother has the best recipe for fruitcake. It is chock full of pecans,cherries and pineapple with lots of lemon flavoring. I have been trying for 25 years to make this cake and every year, mine sticks to the pan. I have bought new pans, greased and floured it heavily and even lined with wax paper. Today I made my 25th cake and true to tradition it fell all apart, in spite of several phone calls to mom today talking me through it. I'm about ready to give up! But, I cannot throw in the towel just yet. This is the first year my Irish son in law will be here for Christmas and I have promised him a full blown traditional Texas Christmas. So, I must try it again next week.I'm so happy I didnt use all of my nuts today,since this recipe calls for a quart of chopped pecans!

Oh well, I will try again to make the perfect cake. If it fails,I have decided to take it all to my mothers and let her bake it for me. I was also making some shortbread cookies and wanted to dip them in white chocolate and then in crushed peppermint. I thought this would look so pretty. I was very carefully watching the chocolate and it burned in the microwave.

If any of you have any suggestions, please forward them to me. I am distressed today after having so many failures. Usually, my baking turns out very well.

Hope your baking is turning out better than mine!


Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday! We have had family over today with lots of fun and food. We have enjoyed every moment. We drew names for Christmas today and realized in the past year our family has really grown! Ive got lots to do now in preparation for Christmas.

My computer has a nasty virus and is in the shop. My daughter is allowing me to use hers for the day to catch up . So I do not have any wonderful pictures to post. I have some great vintage photos on mine and hope they will be recovered!
Have a wonderful week and be safe tomorrow if you shop those sales!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Peace and Harmony During the Holidays

The holiday seasons are upon us and with all the preparations being made, sometimes we overlook some very important details.
Newspapers and magazines will print articles on the rapid rise of depression and stress during the season, and in an attempt to elevate guilt many families go overboard trying to create the perfect celebration. When all of the presents are unwrapped and the turkey is gone, we look at the mountain of bills that start flowing in. And some will feel the great"letdown" of after the season blues!
In our world today many of us are trying to blend families and still maintain traditions of the old. I have learned some important lessons over the years and would like to share them with you.

1) Stop stressing over the gifts! They do not have to be wrapped in gorgeous paper tied with elegant bows and trimmed with personalized ornaments. Nor do they have to be expensive. I love the idea of making handmade gifts, but with my schedule of work and school it is simple impossible. So I gave up that idea a few years ago. Will your family suffer from permament damage if they do not recieve handmade gifts?No! My teenagers could care less! And the grown children would just as well have cash. My kids want to hit the holiday sales after Christmas and choose what they want. Nothing is more aggravating than standing in a long line to exchange sizes or gifts.

2) I was under the false impression for many years that I had to bake 12 pies, dozens of cookies and cakes. And put on a spread for the actual meal! Wrong! Get those kids involved! I now make a menu ahead of time and each child brings a dish. Of course, if your kids are small you might not want to do that! But really no one will notice if you only serve 4 veggies instead 8. Take a poll of your family's favorite holiday food and plan your menu from those requests. I can think of several salads that I used to make each year simply because MY mother made them. Those are usually the ones that get thrown out a few days later.

3)If you are trying to blend two families it can be very stressful,especially if you feel compelled to include all of the past traditions. I have 2 stepchildren and have been very fortunate that we get along so well. I asked them what they loved most about Christmas and made sure they felt welcome and included in the plans. One year I tried filling everyone a stocking and buying gifts. After it was all over,I decided that while we will hang the stockings each year, that the expense was not worth the reaction we got. All of the candy, fruit and small items were found lying around and no one actually took it home.

4)Make new traditions! I know we all want the ideal Norman Rockwell perfect Christmas. I would work for weeks trying to make that happen. Guess what? I was the one that felt it was not quite right! So the next year,I would try harder. I finally came to realize that I love some of the old,but it was also time to bring in the new . While we may not want to accept it, this is 2011, not 1951. Now, dont get me wrong. I LOVE the idea of it, but in reality we simply do not live that way. I would love to sit around the fire at night singing Christmas carols and drinking eggnog. My kids are sitting around trying to figure out the newest gadget they just got. Last year, we all gathered at the house for sandwiches,chips and dips on Christmas Eve. The older kids got a game of Monopoly going and we stayed up most of the night playing a tournament. Everyone spent the night and we opened gifts the next morning. My husband and I loved it, but the grown kids were on the sofa, the floor and sacked out in the chairs. They made the decision that they loved the activities,but they missed their beds and would not be spending the night again!

5) Scale down some of the decorations! I have the snow villages, the Bedford Falls village, the collection of nutcrackers, angels and vintage toys. I used to put up five trees , decorate the stair banisters, the porch, the yard and anything else that would stand still long enough. A few years ago I moved into a much smaller home and decided that I would alternate my themes. One year I will have the villages out, the next year it might be the vintage old fashioned toys and ornaments. But I do not bring it all out every year. I keep a holiday book and know each year which one I will do next.

Now, I am sure there will be many of you that do not agree with this. Maybe you are a stay at home mom and have the extra time and energy to accomplish all of the above without scaling back a bit. Or maybe you can afford an extra person to come in and trim your trees and deck the halls. There is nothing wrong with that. But for those that cant, make the traditions count. Make the most of the time you are spending with your family. Remember that those are the things that really count. Remember the real reason we celebrate the season is our Saviors birth. He came that we could be free from bondage and enjoy life everlasting! Memories are precious to all of us and if we can make them more memorable by simply having a less stressful holiday. We will all be happy and healthier!

Have a great week!


Saturday, November 13, 2010

Holidays Are Coming!

Im so excited about the holiday season this year! I have so many reasons to be thankful and try to remind myself each day of the goodness of the Lord! I kept thinking this week about the word "Grace". I read the definition in the dictionary and it stated that grace is the unmerited favor of God! Unmerited! Something that we do not earn, but He still pours out his favor and grace each and every day of our life.
Looking back over my life there have been many struggles, many hardships,but I have overcome them all with Gods favor. He has shown me that many things we do not understand have made me the person that I have become. He has also shown me that there is nothing impossible when we believe. Struggles that seem insurmountable are made bearable when God is on our side. There is nothing that we cannot overcome when we have faith in our Savior.
My prayer this week is that you will hide His word in your heart and dwell on the blessings he has given you!


Monday, November 8, 2010

2nd Anniversary!

Time has just flown by! We are already celebrating our 2nd anniversary. This year my husband surprised me with a trip to the mountains. We drove up into the Oklahoma mountains for the weekend. It was just heavenly, we had no TV, no Internet and no telephones. We spent the entire weekend talking and just relaxing , what a change from our hectic life.
The log cabin was nestled in an out of way location, beside a river. The cabin was beautiful and very tastefully furnished. All I had to pack was some snacks and wine.

This was the room as it looked when you walk in. The mountains were beautiful with leaves in every color!

Lots of good books, chocolates,candles and plush robes were provided. The weather was cooler than we had been used to and it was so nice to sit out on the balcony and watch the sunset over the mountains.

I spent lots of time relaxing in the tub.

It was a little too warm for a fire, but we enjoyed the view of the stone covered fireplace. It was so warm and inviting. We cant wait to come back here in the winter time.

The cabins are located in Watson Oklahoma. Here is the

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Books! Glorious Books!

I have found the most delightful books! I just couldnt wait to share them with you. As you know I love pie! I could eat pie every day and never get tired of it! So when I ran across this wonderful cookbook devoted to southern pies, well Im just in pie heaven! I cant wait to get in the kitchen and start baking up some of the great recipes I found in this book. My Granny used to bake a butterscotch pie that had coconut and pecans in it. It was creamy and so delicious, I am hoping to recreate her recipe with the help of this book.
Another wonderful find this week are a couple of Betty Crocker books on entertaining. My daughters and I are going to host a cocktail, tree trimming party with a 1960"s theme. This book has so many great ideas that I can use for our party. We have decided to have it the Saturday after Thanksgiving, everyone will help trim the tree, eat and be merry!

This little book is a re-print of a guide published in the 1950"s. It has fabulous ideas on food,tablescapes,invitations and so many other great tips. Im in book heaven today.
Have a fabulous week and enjoy!


Sunday, October 17, 2010

Goodbye to a Legend!

I was so sad today when I heard that Barbara Billingsley had passed away. I loved her character on Leave it to Beaver! I have wished for years that I could be just like her! She was the perfect model of a mother wife and homemaker. I think I will wear my pearls today in honor of her.


Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Good Morning!

Good morning to you! Help yourself to a warm ooey gooey chocolate chip cookie! That will set your day just right. Have a good one!


Sunday, October 10, 2010

Wonderful Fall Days

I am really enjoying the cooler weather we are having in Texas! I love this time of year, it is a gorgeous day and loving the outdoors!
There is still a little color in the flower beds

I weeded and cleaned up the patio today. Our son in laws parents are arriving from Ireland tonight and wanted it to be spic and span!

I have planted some herbs in pots. Hope they will grow for a while outside and then I can bring them indoors! Have a great week!


Sunday, September 26, 2010

50Th Anniversary

Dont you just love the Andy Griffith Show? I love this show and have since I was a kid. TV Land is celebrating the 50 th anniversary with back to back shows. Andy is the father everyone wishes they had. Loyal, kind,wise and good. An upright man who always does the right thing even when it hurts.
Opie is just too cute. I have always longed to live in a community where your children could play outside in the fresh air and ride their bikes without fear.

But, Aunt Bea is my favorite! She is the epitome of all that is gracious and good in a homemaker. Her pearls are gorgeous and her hair just right. Even after a long day of baking and shopping for her home. Take time to watch a few of the re-runs. I know you will walk away feeling better about everything, with a good chuckle to boot!


Sunday, September 12, 2010

My Wonderful Weekend

AHHHH! I have had such a great weekend. My grandson, spent the morning with me yesterday. He was such a trooper! I had to grocery shop and run errands, and he was very patient with me. After we returned home, he spent the morning dazzling me with his new writing and spelling skills(he is6). We looked at Halloween decorations and decided that we would go for the autumn look rather than the scary pumpkin look.
I bought sunflowers and arrranged them in an old galvanized watering can on the sun porch. Drug out some fall decor and fluffed and puffed the living and dining room. I still have a way to go, but at least its a start!

I was sidetracked, by my new Barefoot Contessa cookbook and just couldnt wait to look at it. As a result, I have spent two days cooking non stop! Yesterday, I made Chicken alfredo with penna pasta, salad and some fabulous bread I discovered called Rosemary Potato bread. It is wonderfully fragrant and very tasty. This morning I got up at the crack of dawn and had a great frittata made for the family. My daughter just looked at me and asked what time did you get up? It was really easy and went together fast. After that I made a apple and pear crisp for dessert tonight. Now, I am grilling some steak and throwing together a salad. I am going to make some mashed potatoes instead of baked and add some onion and chive cream cheese. Hopefully they will be delicious! Have I mentioned that I am addicted to Food Network? I tape my favorites to watch over the weekend. Ina Garten is one of the best. I love how easy her recipes are and so delicious. She will be on a book tour this fall, stopping Dallas for a book signing. I would love to go!!!! But, I have to work that day!
Have a great week, love all of the wonderful blog posts this week. It seems everyone is really inspired to transform their homes for fall.


Thursday, September 9, 2010


Im so ready for cooler weather! We have had 3 days this week in the low 90's, which is a treat for us. Can wait for a nip in the weather! I love sitting out in the mornings with a nice cup of tea and planning my day. Have a great Friday!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

School Bells

School has started and it brings me joy and sadness. My daughter is in her senior year, kinda bittersweet. On one hand, I will never buy school clothes with a teenage daughter again. On the other, Im sure next year I will miss it.
But more than ever, I am so happy that fall is upon us! We have had a severe heat wave and it is just now starting to wane a bit. By the end of the week temperatures should only be around 95 degrees. I cant wait for fall, it is my favorite time of year.
I hope that you are enjoying the cooler weather and having a great week.


Monday, August 16, 2010

Heat Wave!

We have been having some really hot weather in the past 2 weeks. Temperatures are well above 100 degrees and it is so miserable. So I have been staying inside playing with the new grandbaby. He REALLY likes to take a bath!
School starts on Monday and not looking forward to it at all. We shopped today for a few things to add to my daughters existing wardrobe. But really didnt find that many sales going on. Next week is Tax free weekend. Most shoppers are out and about then, but not me. I cannot fight the crowds looking for clothes with everyone else in the city. So we will add a few things and make do with what we have for now.
Stay cool and hope you have a fabulous week!


Sunday, August 8, 2010


I love being at home! I have really enjoyed my new house and the space it affords. I now have enough room to display my favorite things without neglecting my husbands belongings. The home we shared before had belonged to him for 30 years and it was very much a bachelors home. It had taken me a year to incorporate our things together and make it ours. But we just didnt have enough room. Together we have 7 children, 4 grandchildren and tons of family and friends. So space is a premium when we are all together.
The pantry door has been painted with chalkboard paint so we have had all the kids sign it for us as they came to visit.

I was just noticing today how many items I have that say "home" and several things that make me feel at home. Have you ever watched the movie "The Quiet Man"? I love this movie. There is a part where she tells her new husband she has to have her things about her. I feel that way also. Everyone has special items that just make you feel at home.

I found this great key rack at Pier One

I love the bird pillow and it is soooo comfy. The rocker and old sewing box I found at an estate sale.

I love having scripture in the house. It reminds me daily to give thanks for all I have in this world.

Sorry this is so blurry. This is a cross stitch sampler that I did about 25 years ago. I recently spray painted the frame flat black to update it and hung it in the kitchen.

I fell in love with this picture the minute I saw it in the Gooseberry Patch catalog. I bought it for myself as an early Christmas present last year.
More pictures soon. I have been spending all of my time with my new grandson. He is so adorable and babies grow up so fast. Im trying to get my time in now. Little boys are not still for very long once they start to walk!
Have a wonderful week.