I promise that I am alive and well...just been busy and the little lady who enables me to actually write has been in the Dr's office for a cleanup!! My computer crashed on me a few days before my first SLAH show...when I deperately NEEDED her, but she's home now and all is well. I will try to catch up on my blogging sometime this week....but for now, hope everyone had a great Easter and I hope everyone is having a great Monday;)


caught in the act

So....I fell asleep in the hammock yesterday;~) I had a massive headache for the better part of the day *may have had something to do with not eating and just having redbull for breakfast...hmmmm?*, so after picking the kids up from school, I decided to go lay outside for a while. The sun was warm on my skin and the gentle rocking of the hammock had me out within a few minutes. Really, it could not be helped. I think I've found a new habit;)

little black dress night

Went our with Beth last night to The Boatyard for Little Black Dress night...just posting one pic for now because Dawn took most of the pictures and I am hoping that her's turned out better than mine!!! Also, the photo guy took some really great pics of us, so I am waiting for him to upload them to the boatyard website so I can steal them...mwahahahahha! Check out my bling! We got goodie bags, but mine was the only one that had the shiny stuff in it;)


Happy St Pat's Day!

Every year, Lenny the Leprechaun makes an appearance at our house. Usually just to use the toilet....but this year he decided to eat a few things from the fridge as well! Apparently, the price of gasoline has affected the magical world as well...because this year he didn't leave behind any gold...only a few green carnations! The kids were excited to come home from school today to see if he'd been by the house. Once again, they giggled over the green "pee" in our toilet. Tied to the green carnations that he left behind were notes written on shamrocks in "leprechaun" language! Thank God mum was able to figure out that we could read his messages by looking at them in the mirror! Lenny is the talk of the house tonight....and the kids ate their St Patty's Day themed dinner wondering if he'd like green eggs and ham too;)

ewww! Leprechaun pee-pee! *I really wish he'd start flushing the toilet!*

The St Pat's spread! Green eggs and ham, toast with green butter, green milk, and green cupcakes.

I topped the cupcakes with chocolate shavings. YUM!

Another visitor....and a pretty

Look who made an appearance in our backyard today! He blends in very well with the grass, so click on the picture to enlarge so you can see him!

Also, I have been looking for a round, black coffee table for the living room. I have been to EVERY SINGLE furniture store in town....and no luck. Ginger and I were at the antique mall on Saturday when I came across this little beauty! The top is a bit worn and deperately needs some paint...but just LOOK at those legs! I am in love with this table....and as an added bonus....it only cost me $38! YEHAW!

Menu Plan Monday

Monday~ Pork chops and mashed potatoes *green eggs and ham for kids*
Tuesday~ Pork fried rice w/ carrots and peas
Wednesday~ Chicken Parmesean w/ garlic bread and corn on cob
Thursday~ Fried chicken gizzards, okra, potatoes *baked chicken tenders for me and kids*
Friday~ Tacos and Quesadilla's w/ B's homemade salsa

Easy breezy week....again:) It's one of those weeks that I simply don't feel like putting much effort into figuring out a new menu or doing anything out of the ordinary! *side note about gizzard night....my hubby loves fried livers and gizzards, but the kids and I can't even chew them, much less...swallow! So, because I love B so much, I fry them for him, but make something else for the kids and I. Yes, I am an incredible wifey~!


my thank you........

have you ever had a day that you feel that you should just cry from the peacefulness that surrounds you? in this moment....i feel like that.

2007 was a very tough year for us. financially, emotionally, and physically...I learned that worry can age you like nothing else can. i spent the year getting by each day on very little sleep, worrying about money issues that were beyond our control, questioning my life, friendships, and other relationships, in ways that I never had before. i learned many lessons last year, not only about myself, but about the people I surrounded myself with.

2007 ended on a tear and I welcomed 2008 on a few as well.

After learning that B got a new job back home in Florida, I felt that I could loosen my belt a bit and actually BREATHE for the first time in a very long time. Unfortunately at that same time, I was forced to deal with the fact that many of the relationships that I'd spent time building over the past few years, weren't exactly what I'd worked them up to be in my heart and mind. In a time that I should have been bouncing off the walls with happiness and planning some sort of going away party....I was left on my own as my husband made his way to Florida a few weeks ahead of us to find a home.....and people that I considered friend, cut me off without rhyme or reason. I spent so much time worrying, crying, fretting, and trying to figure out what I could do to fix it...to fix, ME.

On the word of a very wise friend, I continued to hold my breath for the something better that moving promised me. Skeptical, I was....knowing the way I felt during my last month in South Carolina....I carried on and dealt with my life there as well as I could figure how to. I left SC very sad, with tears in my eyes and a lump in my throat...as if something was left undone, yet knowing how the game was played....and that I could do nothing about it at all. Here I sit...almost 2 months later...feeling as if SC never happened. Feeling that my life there was almost a waste of time...and a waste of thousands of tears on people who never really cared to begin with.

I watched a show on TV tonight in which a woman put a gun in her jacket pocket and drove with plans to kill someone who'd done her wrong. When she walked through the door, hidden in the shadows, her phone rang...and her plan to kill someone was stalled due to an emergency concerning her 13 month old niece. She picked up her niece and took her back to her home. She sat her niece on the floor, draped her jacket on a chair, and went to get cookies and milk from the kitchen. When she returned to the room, her niece was holding the loaded gun in her hand.

It made me think of the things that we carry around inside us. The anger, pain...that we tote around with us everyday. Sure, we are adept at hiding these feelings, but after watching this...I thought about the way we hurt those we love by the bad things, feelings....that we carry around in our pockets.

In this moment, even my little toe is at peace...in complete happiness I sit and ponder the lessons learned from the heartache, worry, and sleepless nights that I experienced over the last year. Thankful that I left SC with a world of knowledge on life and relationships....and an ability to do something that I haven't been able to do for almost 4 years. From the pain of last year I learned....

to let go.

Of resentment that I'd held against the people who turned their backs on my mother...when they once called her "sister" or friend. For SO LONG I have held onto that and each time I saw certain people, I would cringe and literally bite holes in my cheeks from the hate I had toward them. I let go of the life sucking anger that I felt towards God for not giving us the chance to say a proper goodbye to my brother. I can't question Him anymore, because I am tired of feeling angry everytime I look at Ricky's picture. I let go of anger towards some of my mother's family for treating her like a second hand citizen all of her life. To let go....of the things that are out of my control. I learned that no matter what I say....what I do.... nothing EVER changes someone's feelings towards me.....but I should never let that make me be afraid to keep on keeping on;)

I ADORE who I am. I mess up...often. I do things that make even those who love me regardless, shake their heads in irritation. I am not perfect...and I find my own imperfections...endearing:) I laugh too loudly, I talk far too much, I go off in ADD tangents in nearly every moment of my day, I eat super fast and talk even faster, I am not a size 4, I have a big nose and a jiggly belly, I don't get manicures or get my hair done, I don't work out like I should, I blog entirely too much about things that no one really cares to read about....and I am not a good dancer.


I still sit in peace tonight....content with the life that is unfolding around me. Blessed to be surrounded by family who love me, and loved me even when I was a great big ball of anger and resentment. Blessed to have a friend who sticks to me like glue, no matter what;) Blessed to have two lovely kids who still kiss me goodbye in front of their friends. Blessed to have a hardworking husband who sees EVERY ONE of my faults...and loves me all the same. This blog is my thank you to God tonight...for giving me the strength to cry such happy tears...

All in a day's work

After D and G left this morning, the whole family headed outside to do some much needed yard work! Brandon hopped on the mower and cut the grass, while the kids and I tackled the garden. I wish I would have taken a "before" picture, but you'll have to settle for the "after" one instead:)

For years, I have wanted my own vegetable garden. I love fresh veges, and for some reason, they seem to taste better when they come from your own backyard! After much weeding, fertilizing, and weeding some more....the garden was ready for some seeds. I chose to plant sweet carrots, sugar snap peas, cucumbers, squash, sunflower, and some herbs. I did overplant the squash and cuc's, just in case some of the seeds were duds...and I am going to plant some peppers later this week. The tomato plant that we put in a month ago is getting pretty big as well, so I will be trussing it up sometime soon. The kids had a blast helping me pull weeds, and were rewarded with the random earthworn making an appearance. It's going to be great when they help me harvest the vege's, knowing that THEY had a hand in helping them grow!

Here are a few pics of the kids helping out, along with an amazing "after" shot. We all have a bit of sunburn and our hands are stained by the soil....but I guarantee that we will sleep well tonight!

The silver bags you see beside the garden are grounds from Starbucks. You can request for them to save the grounds for you to use in your garden. It's a great way to recycle AND they are free:) I meant to take a picture of the compost box we have in the backyard as well, but I forgot. You don't have to buy fertilizer from the store if you can make your own in a compost box;) I'll be picking up a few more bags of grounds to jumpstart the box later this week.


Daryl and Ginger came to visit us this week! We had fun just hanging out, but we also threw in fishing, antique shopping, Sperry shopping, eating at Tally-Ho and MargaritaVille, and a lovely vet nightmare;) Whenever we're together I have to get at least one pic of the two of us together, but this go around the kids wanted to get involved. They left around noonish....but I miss desperately miss them already. I am so blessed to have such an amazing brother, lucky to call him friend...and even MORE lucky to call his wife the same:) I love you two....beyond imagination!

always better the 2nd time around:)

I just had to post this pic of me with my 2nd cousin, Paulie. Paulie's dad, Chris, and I are first cousins....and we were the best of friends growing up. His personality is the spitting image of Chris', but he looks just like his momma! Seriously, who can resist those big old cheeks! If you think those are cute, you should see his Buddah belly:)

an unexpected visitor

I opened the door this morning to find a snapping turtle on my doorstep! The little sucker tried to get in the house, but Hobbes decided to put on his guard dog hat and scare him off. The kids had a good time trying to feed him bibb lettuce....Brooke even picked him up!....and they followed him across the yard trying to figure out where he lives. This is the second time we've had a snapping turtle in our yard, so after a considerable amount of reasonable deduction, we've decided that we have a snapping turtle living under the shed in our backyard! So, we have squirrels in the trees, rabbits in the left corner of the backyard, turtles in the right, and the random cat camping out under the hammock. It's a virtual zoo in my backyard~~


Meet Petey

Petey the Pig, that is.

while on the phone w/ L, I jokingly said that I should name the pig. i then said that I was thinking of "Pete", but it was too....boring? L laughed and said she'd just thought the name "Pete" as well...before I'd said anything. So, Petey it is.
in the spirit of fun...and we all need more of it in our lives...i've decided to take L's advice and make Petey my travel buddy. so don't be surprised or think i've fallen off my rocker when you visit the blog and find random photos of Petey going places and doing things that no wooden pig has done before. we are deliciously clever.

Wordless Pic Wednesday

Funky Finds on a lunch break:)

If you look closely in the background, you'll see the ladder I found 2 weeks ago. If was $45 then, and I didn't really want to spend that much on it. I went back today and it was on sale for $18!!! WOW! This urn is so sweet. It has little bits of red and blue paint on it. The pig....what can I say about him...he is just precious:) He's wooden and pretty heavy for a little guy. Candy Cane lane sign came from the same booth that I got the ladder. It was originally marked $10, but I got it for $4!

These metal bowls are fantastic!! I think I will use them somehow in the half bath. Not sure yet, but I had to have them.

Wooden airplane w/ metal attachments. So cute. He will sit on the bookshelf too. The book stand will be in the kitchen, unless I decide to use it w/ a picture on the bookshelf. I will be using it at my SLAH parties too, as a book display*duh*.

Growing up I'd always heard that kissing a pig would bring you good luck. Maybe it was because there were very few people who would actually want to kiss a pig, I don't know. Either way...I am kissing my little guy for loads of it!

Here I am again with my pig. I need a name for him.....I really don't know WHY I got so excited over him...I don't even collect pigs. The color, maybe? Hmmm. Still, he is awfully cute.

I met my old pal, Beth, downtown for lunch today...we had a good time catching up and are planning on doing lunch every other week:) I am super excited to start spending a bit of time with my oldest friend....AND, doing so will give me an excuse to browse more antique shops downtown:) *as if I needed an excuse!! HAHA!* Today I found a lot of new little things to add to my bookshelf. I bought a 6 shelf bookcase when we moved, and now I need things to fill it up with!!! *don't tell me...BOOKS...because we already have a shelf for books in the music room;)* Here are some pics of my fabulous finds!! Lori....I can hardly wait for you to get here so you can go crazy with me at these great shops~it will be fun shopping with someone other than myself!!


Menu Plan Monday

Monday~ Shrimp Creole w/ rice

Tuesday~ Crunchy ranch tortilla chicken w/ twice baked potatoes

Wednesday~ Honey basted pork chops w/ squash and corn on the cob

Thursday~ Lemon pepper mushroom chicken w/ yukon gold potatoes *I am going to a Taste of Home show this night, so easy is called for! This dish is super easy and quick to prepare. As usual, I am using boxed Yukon Gold potatoes because they are my fav!*

Friday~ Feta stuffed chicken w/ prosciutto and angel hair pasta *my brother is visiting and he LOVES this dish:)*

Saturday~ for breakfast, Creamy Sausage Casserole. I am posting Sat breakfast because Daryl and Ginger will be here, and this is one of our favorite breakfasts. You HAVE to try it! It's like sausage and gravy in handheld form. super yummy!

As with last week, I will post one or two recipes and link to my recipe blog.



I linked the recipe for my crawfish pie from last week's menu to my other blog. Instead of posting recipes on THIS blog, and eating up my space, I have decided to just keep the other one for recipes.You can scroll over the recipe and click on the link provided from Menu Monday.

Another thing....

Most of my readers know that I've been a Cookie Lee Jewelry consultant for almost a year now. I love to wear the jewelry, but after many returns and pieces breaking, tarnishing too quickly, and personally being unhappy with the product quality in general, I decided to stop selling in January. Upon moving to Florida, I also knew that I wouldn't have much of a core clientele group because the majority of the people I know here don't wear it all. Knowing that I still wanted to have my own home based sales business, I decided to become a Southern Living at Home sales consultant. For only $199 I signed up and recieved over $500 worth of product to get me started! This Friday I met my sponsor at a local home and garden show and met several promising clients. My sponsor, Susie, has also said that any bookings she gets from the remaining days of the show....she will give to me, since she lives in Pensacola and the drive is a bit too far for her to make every week. I signed up on Friday and had my kit on SATURDAY! The very next day! I have been to several shows, and am already assured of the quality of product....as well as the guarantee, so I feel very content and at peace with making the switch:)

I am super exicted for my launch party, and my stepmom is hosting a catalog party for me in Mississippi to get this ball rolling. Wish me luck;) You can check out my SLH website by clicking on the link.

Hugs to all of my friends who are having to suffer through the miserable snowstorms!!! I will make you feel a bit less envious of me.....the high here today is only 55 degrees...so no boating for me today:) HAHAHAHA!


No need for words...

It's a BOY!

We have a new addition to the family! My daughter is the proud parent to a new baby HAMSTER! Brooke has been begging for a hamster ever since her friend Courtney got one last year. As I am scared of any little critter that poses the possibility of piercing the skin, I have been stalling the purchase of one for ages. When we moved, I told Brooke that if she could be responsible enough to save her own money she could have her hamster. Between report card money, tooth fairy money *she lost another tooth after we moved*, and Valentine's money.....the girl did it! So, after school on Monday I surprised her with the trip to Petsmart to get her new baby. She took her time perusing each and every cage before coming to a decision. I must say, the girl chose well because Pluto is the sweetest little thing. He seems very mild tempered, has yet to bite any of us *except for the hubby....HAHAHA!*, and loves to be held. He loves to run in this little ball we bought him. He rolls ALL over the house....with Hobbes in fast, but tentative pursuit. The dog has yet to figure him out, so he is pretty scared of him for now. Brooke has started reading to him at night as well, so I am thinking this hamster will benefit me as well! Here's a cute pic of our new baby! Welcome home Pluto!


Menu Plan Monday

My friend Liz has been doing this menu plan Monday thing for a long time now, so I thought it was about time for me to jump on the bandwagon! The idea comes from Orgjunkie, a really great site for those of us who are constantly looking for new and fun ways to organize our lives! One of my goals this year is to transform my home...my LIFE!...into a nice, neat organized little ball:) I've always had the habit of over-extending myself and taking on more than I can handle. Not this year....I am slowing down and re-prioritizing my life, and so far...all is well on the homefront! So here you go~my very first Menu Plan Monday! Thanks, Liz, for the fun idea!

Monday~ Turkey tacos and cheese quesadillas w/ Brandon's homemade salsa

Tuesday~ Crawfish pie w/ french bread and green beans

Wednesday~ Chicken fried steak w/ yukon gold potatoes *the BOX kind..HA! I love them!* and gravy with fried okra

Thursday~ Chicken alfredo w/ fettucine and french bread *having the in-laws over for dinner, so maybe I will throw in a salad*

Friday~ Shrimp and chicken gumbo w/ rice and rolls

I am not including the weekends on here just because we do pizza or something else super easy on those days. Sunday is pretty much whatever is left in the fridge from the previous week. My menu looks super yummy.....I might post pics of some of the dishes on my other blog along with the recipes of a few of them as well. I believe my alfredo recipe is already on there, but will have to check. I do NOT use a mix or that nasty bottled stuff...and my recipe is beyond yummy, so you'll have to try it! For now....I pass on the menu plan Monday challenge to those of you reading! Let me know if you do it and I will check your menu out *and most likely steal some recipes from you!*