September 26, 2012

Wordless Wednesday - Playtime

Hey Momma?  I think Paisley and Beckett are being naughty.
Brady, relax.  Paisley is just telling Beckett a story.
Um, Momma?  I really think they're being naughty!
Fine.  You're right.  Be good, you little fuzzballs!
Brady, you're such a tattletale!  I was supervising them.
Sigh.  I'll just go pout in my crate.

September 24, 2012

Tuesdays At TheTable - Granola "Candy Bars"

Happy Tuesday!  It's been a busy few days.  Over the weekend, I had the privilege of accompanying my cousin, Kristin and some other friends and family members wedding dress shopping.  If you follow me on Instagram, you got to see the lovely gown she picked out.  I also seem to be the Queen of owner surrenders for our rescue lately.  Sad...but true.  I've listened to so many stories that have broken my heart, that I couldn't help but cry it out a few times.

OK...on to some HAPPY!  I'm happily embarrassing my kitchen these days and these oatmeal candy bars are so easy and pretty darn yummy.  I saw something similar on Pinterest and modified it to my preferences.


Granola Candy Bars

1 1/4 cups peanut butter
2/3 cup honey
1/2 cup coconut oil
2 cups oats (quick oats...but not instant)
1 1/2 cups mini chocolate chips
1/2 cup dried cranberries (or raisins)
1/2 cup pecans or walnuts, chopped

In a medium sized saucepan, melt together peanut butter, honey and coconut oil.

Remove from heat and add oats, chocolate chips, pecans and dried cranberries. Stir until combined and chocolate chips are melted.

Spread into wax paper lined 9x13 pan. Refrigerate until hardened, about an hour. Cut and keep refrigerated.

What's cooking in your kitchen?

September 20, 2012

Notes From Paisley - The Case Of The Missing Momma

Hi!  Iz Beckett.  Momma left her laptop open again...and I decided to help Paisley hijack da blogger account.  She seems to think most of mom's friends live in the computer.  Hmph.  She might be right!


Hi Everypuppy!
Iz da Paisley! (aka Pay-pay, Pay-ski, or Nugget) I really thunk that momma's fwiends and most of da family lived in da comfuter, but last week peoples started showing up.  Dey showed up at the glammy and grampy's house and momma had to spends ALL her times bisiting dem instead of lubbing on us.

Beckett called her a beach.  Whatever dat means! {OMD, Paisley!  NEVER admit to mom that I called her that!}

Anyway...we all gots stuck in da kitchen.  Which is kinda funny cuz deres is FIVE doors in the kitchen, so gates are everywheres.  She was gone fur hours and hours and hours.  At least, if felt dat way. Beckett managed to go through the window (indoor) that seperates da kitchen from da sunroom, so he got to lay on the sunroom lubseat.  LUCKY!

Now that family has gones back to homes, we want momma to bring us to PetSmart to pick out Hallo-weenie costumes.  We should get presents for being ignored, right? I mean, I'z only seven months old...but I like to looks pwetty and I hear Hallo-weenie is a BLAST!

What should we all be?  Crayons?  Bumblebees? Sheep?

Lubs and kissies,

September 17, 2012

Tuesdays At The Table - Coffee Cake

Happy Tuesday!  Here's a little secret for you... because of all the family in town, need to be away from my house and grandma-centric birthday festivities...I haven't cooked since Thursday.  I kind of miss my kitchen!

It's supposed to rain later this week, and I think I just might be making this coffee cake.  YUM!

Coffee Cake
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup sifted all-purpose flour
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 1/2 cups sifted all-purpose flour (sift before measuring)
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg, beaten
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup melted butter
1/3 cup milk
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
In small mixing bowl, combine topping ingredients. Blend with fork until crumbly. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, combine together beaten egg, sugar and melted butter. Add milk and vanilla. Stir in flour, baking powder and salt, mixing well.

Pour batter into a greased and floured  9-inch layer-cake pan. Sprinkle topping crumb mixture evenly over batter. Bake at 375° for 25 to 30 minutes, when a toothpick will come out clean. Partially cool in pan on wire rack. Cut coffee cake into squares while still warm.
What's cooking in your kitchen?

This Lady...

...LOVED her birthday party!

I think she was overwhelmed by the number of people there, but what can I say?  She's a popular lady!

Happy 90th birthday, grandma!

September 14, 2012

Happy Birthday, Grandma!

The family is throwing my grandma a 90th birthday party this weekend.  Her birthday is technically on Monday - and I'm sure that she'll get plenty of love and attention all weekend long, straight through to her actual birthday.

I can't wait to see my aunts, uncle and assorted cousins, second cousins, etc!  It's going to be a wonderful weekend.

As part of my grandma's party, I'm organizing a photo/memory book as well as "grandma trivia".  It's been such  a blessing getting to put together her memory book.  There are some wonderful stories that family members have submitted!  I just wish that more of my cousins had participated...  Who knows, maybe once they show up, I can nudge them into writing something. Ha! :-) {Side note: My mom has named me the human spell check and grammar check. I wish some people wrote in full sentences!}

This party has also had a few depressing moments. I asked my grandma one day who she wanted to invite, only to realize that so many people that are important to her have already passed on. But I'm so glad that she gets this party! I want her to live many more years... but at 90, she has lived a full life. I feel so grateful for the time I've gotten with her. God forbid, but if she happens to pass away soon, I would feel at peace that she's has gotten a last hurrah and knows how much people love her.

Here's what I'm contributing to the memory book:

When I was two or three, grandma decided to teach me how to eat Oreos, and not your typical “dunk, nibble, repeat” either.  She taught me to twist the Oreo open, eat the cream center and throw away or “give away” the chocolate cookies.  I still prefer the cream center to the actual cookies!

 Not many of the grandkids will remember grandma driving.  I also have the distinction of recalling her missing part of the driveway and ending up in the gulley by the well grandpa had dug. Oops…

Even as a little girl, I knew that my grandparents thrived on socializing and throwing parties.  I loved year after year of Thanksgivings, Christmases and 4th of Julys packed with family, fun and food.  They both loved being advisors for Rainbow and Demolay too!  Getting to be present for a few of their pool parties with the teenagers was so much fun.  Those kids must have really admired grandma and grandpa to let me bother them so much. Watching her through the years taught me a lot about party planning, food prep and being a good hostess.


Grandma has inspired my love of shoes.  Or…I could say that I blame her for passing on the gene for hoarding shoes.  J If you find a shoe you like, buy one in every color!  Having traveled with her, I also learned moderation in packing those shoes.  The summer I turned sixteen, we (mom, Josh, Lori, grandma and I) did a tour of England, Scotland and Wales.  I kid you not that there was an entire suitcase of hers dedicated to shoes!  I wish all the shoes she brought made it back.  Sadly, there were casualties…or as she said, “a reason to buy more shoes”.


She’s also provided some useful observations:

·         No matter how dainty you look…some women can, in fact, snore loud enough to shake the walls. 
·         Sleeping and knitting at the same time is an art form!
·         Smiling and nodding can get you through most situations.
·         You never get too old to play “beauty shop” with your grandma.
·         There’s always room for dessert!
·         If there’s a fire alarm in a foreign country in the middle of the night she WILL stop to get fully dressed (including make-up).

September 10, 2012

Tuesdays At The Table - Crockpot Orange Chicken

Now that fall is finally coming, it's time to bring out the crockpot.  I should probably be cooking in my crockpot all year round...  I'll have to work on that!  In the meantime, here's one of my favorite crockpot meals. :-)

Crockpot Orange Chicken1 1/2 pounds boneless chicken, cut in 2-inch chunks
1/2 cup flour
1 tablespoon olive oil, for browning the chicken
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 ounces (1/2 can) frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed (no pulp)
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons ketchup

Use a 4 quart slow cooker for best results. Dredge the chicken pieces in flour, and shake off the excess. Throw out any unused flour. Heat olive oil in a large skillet on the stove and brown the chicken on all sides. (Just sear it enough to get a nice coating).

Throw the chicken pieces into your slow cooker. In a small mixing bowl, combine the orange juice concentrate, brown sugar, balsamic vinegar, salt, and ketchup. Pour sauce mixture evenly over the chicken, and toss gingerly to coat.

Cover and cook on low for 6 hours, or on high for 3 to 4. Serve over white or brown rice.

What's cooking in your kitchen?

Fall TV

You all know that I'm a TV junkie, right?!  I'm working on a color coded viewing schedule...but I won't finalize it until we get a few weeks in and can tell what shows aren't going to get the plug pulled on them after only a few episodes.  Don't you just hate watching a new show, and having it disappear?  I was soooo mad that GCB didn't get picked up for a second season!

Here are a few new shows that I'm really looking forward to:

Premiering 9/10 on NBC
Premiering 9/12 on NBC
Premiering 9/17 on NBC
Premiering 9/30 on ABC
Premiering 9/26 on ABC
Premiering 9/27 on CBS

Some of my returning favorites:
Once Upon A Time
Dancing With The Stars
Grey's Anatomy
New Girl who wants to program my DVR for me?!  What shows - new and returning- are you looking forward to?

September 06, 2012

Accidentally "Unplugged"

Sorry there have been fewer than normal blog posts lately.  It's not my fault.  I swear!

I blame Verizon Wireless and Comcast!  I don't know what in the world is going on...but everyone in my neighborhood and some others in nearby towns (who I've talked to & happens to have Comcast) has been having the same problem I am.  Comcast simultaneously drops phone, internet and cable coverage for hours at a time.  They better fix it...or at least credit my bill.  That sucker isn't cheap, ya know.  :-)  How about you?  Problems with Comcast lately?

Then there's Verizon Wireless. Really, I try not to complain about them.  I've had the same cell phone number and provider for over a decade...and I've NEVER had a problem that they couldn't help me solve.  However, over the past week, my Droid has died a slow, painful death.  First the system upgrade wouldn't load.  Then the poor thing got stuck for three days of just chanting "droid, droid, droid" over and over again on the start screen.  Today, she compltely fried.  Thank goodness for the extended warrantee!  My new (aka refurbished) phone arrives via FedEx tomorrow...and while I'm a little grumpy that I'll have to reload all my apps, I can. not. wait. to be able to read my email and text again!

Now that I've whined at you.... stay tuned.  One of my favorite dog blogs and I have something fun in the works!

September 03, 2012

Tuesdays At The Table - Raspberry Scones

This may not be a popular opinion...but I'm so glad that summer is drawing to a close.  Honestly, it's my least favorite season.  I really dislike being hot and when it's humid, I can't breathe - darn asthma!

I'm so relieved that fall is coming.  With it comes a lower electricity bill (turning off the AC is nice!), sweaters, pretty foliage and finally a kitchen that cool enough to cook in!

Raspberry Scones

1 3/4 cup flour
3 tablespoons sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons Baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup butter
1 egg, beaten
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup whole milk
3/4 cup frozen raspberries (or blueberries, blackberries)
3/4 cup white chocolate chips

In large bowl combine the sugar, flour, baking powder and salt. Cut in the butter.  Stir in the berries and chips.

In a small bowl, combine your beaten egg, vanilla extract and whole milk. Add your wet ingredients to your dry ingredients and stir until the dough comes together.

Pat into a circle, about 8 inches wide and 2 inches thick.  Cut into wedges and place on a greased baking sheet.

Bake at 400 degrees for 18-22 minutes.

What's cooking in your kitchen?

September Book Club Announcement

Happy Fall, everyone!  I know it's still technically Summer...but Labor Day means the end of the season to me. 

Call me an optimist, but as the weather cools, I hope more of you will warm up to curling up on the couch with a good book.  Specifically (ahem...optimism) the book club that Mrs. Jones and I are hosting.

Our book for September will be:

I hope you'll read along, and link up with us the last Friday of the month!

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