Saturday, April 30, 2011

Saturdays mean Soccer

This morning's game was a breeze. 

The girls were fantastic.

As they usually are.

The other team had no chance of keeping up with them.

And part of me felt a little pang for them. 

It always sucks to be stomped.

Can I just stop you right here? 

Take a look at the widespread arms and that foot cocked back 
like a trigger waiting to be pulled as it explodes onto the ball.

I. eat. that. up. 
Time only stops in pictures.
Motion freezes.
Muscles show prominence.
Victory is eminent, no matter what the real-life outcome is.

Another one.

L has a theory that the "sassy pony tail" empowers her.

No matter.  She was hot today.

Her mama has lots to be proud of.

It took mine a while before she got that fire in her belly to stomp the opposing team.
Although, some days, it feels like she left home without it.
But let's face it, we all have those days from time to time.

We were frustrated with her and soccer for seasons upon seasons,
 and then one day, it happened.

Mama don't give up on that girl, she's got it in her.

Fill her sails with air and send her out there.
Leave the rest to God, it'll happen.  In His time.  If it's His will. 
Just be patient.  That's easier said than done, I know.

They were all on today.

And we all wallowed in the glory together.

This one's mine.

A defender, she is.
And I love every minute of watching her duke it out.
She came from the back to almost score.
It just wasn't in the cards today.
Maybe another.
No matter, she's all about defense.
And I'm down with that.


Friday, April 29, 2011

ode to the sun

I aspire to

learn more.

do more.

be more.

Last night, as the sun began its decent, I remembered this and I ran to grab my camera.  Adjusted the settings accordingly and came up with these...

While they didn't come out exactly the way I wanted had expected, by me, they were still winners.  Maybe it's just that adorable face, wavy blond hair and the spirit that is much like mine.  I still had to adjust the fill light a bit because in my hurry, I didn't think much about a reflective source or being close to the house.  No worries, I will continue honing my skills.  I am just thankful for those great photographers like MckMama who continue sharing their secrets to great photos. 

Thank you.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011


Are you bored?

Here're some ideas...

~ swing your chicken ~

~ entertain your chicken with storytelling while you cuddle with her on the slide ~

Saturday, April 23, 2011

disappearing eggs

i boiled eggs on friday.
awaiting k's arrival saturday
so we could dye them.
but the man and i could not wait.

we ate half of what we boiled.

tonight, i boiled more.
and, we finally dyed the eggs.

not an hour later, we dug in.


do your eggs disappear this fast too?

the messenger bag

K was going on a field trip this past Thursday and was allowed to bring entertainment but, no backpack.  Instead, they were to bring only a small bag.  That turned this week's project into a kids'-sized messenger bag.  Which then led to a birthday present for one of her friends.

I started with measurements from here but wasn't happy with its lack of a flap and the straps.  Each to their own.  These little details mattered to me though.  So, veering off on a path of my own, I ended up here...

See those cute little matching brownish buttons to secure the strap, don't you like that?  I do.

And there's that flap I was looking for, where I attached Velcro as the closure.

It was just right for holding a book, DS, extra game case, and an mp3 player.  

K actually used the black/white/turquoise one on her trip and I constructed the one above Friday but, I really, really liked this one.  So, it became the model for these photos.

Sunday, April 17, 2011


I see the moon

and the moon sees me.

God bless the moon 

 and God bless me.

Remember that one?

Tried my hand at photographing the moon tonight.
Frustrated was I.
Need to learn my camera.
Each and every setting. number. symbol.

If you saw the same immense orange moon tonight,
I hope your gaze lingered,
long and hard.
And I pray that you thanked God for
His eminent goodness and His boundless gifts.

"always giving thanks to God the Father for everything,
in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ." - Ephesians 5:20

Here's to a wonderful week full of God's glorious gifts.
May you treasure each twinkling miracle
and allow it to consume your soul with bliss.
Take that happiness and impress it upon those who grace your day.
Share the love, friends.  It's so worth it.

ahead of the game

Mile-High Fudge Brownie Pie
4 squares semi-sweet baking chocolate
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter or margarine
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 cup flour
2 cups cold milk
2 pkgs. (4 serv. size = 3.9 oz. ea.) instant chocolate pudding mix
1 container (8 oz.) cool whip

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9 inch pie dish.  Microwave chocolate and butter on high 2 min. or until melted.  Add sugar, vanilla and eggs; mix well.  Stir in flour; pour into pie dish.  Bake for 30 min. or until a toothpick comes out clean.  Cool completely, to create your crust:  scoop out center leaving 1/2" rim around edge and thin layer on bottom.  Reserve 1/4 cup brownie pieces to garnish.  Pour milk and pudding into mixing bowl, beat with whisk 2 min. (mix will be thick).  Gently stir in 1/2 of cool whip and all but 1/4 cup brownie pieces.  Spread into brownie crust; top with remaining cool whip and top with 1/4 cup reserve brownie pieces.  Refrigerate 2 hours or until set.

You can also find this recipe here.

Friday, April 15, 2011

lions, tigers, and bears?


Oven mitts, coasters and t-shirts, oh my! 

Lately, I've been busy working on a set of these... a donation for a Relay for Life silent auction.
This first one was a dud.

No matter.  I'll keep it and throw some
black bias tape around the cuff to finish it off.
Tutorial by Raechel Myers over at Finding My Feet.

Then, came these cute little coasters...

for Miss B's bridal shower this weekend.
I really love their country chic-ness.
I even made a few for myself.
Tutorial by The Sometimes Crafter.

And, I managed to dulpicate this for little Miss K...

The magazine clipping is on the right.  Honestly, I don't remember what magazine I got this from but, it was a big sister shirt and she was dying for a new creation.  So, we sorta repurposed an old shirt.

Can I just tell you that this is my favorite song this week?

No, it's not new but, I do love it.

Monday, April 11, 2011

more recipes

More recipes because...

#1 - I was scorned over the weekend for buying, not baking my own yeast rolls for the Party Ham Sandwich Bake.  

#2 - I told D and her friend, E that I would pass this along and I have yet to.

#3 - we're on a roll with recipes.

I have always been intimidated by baking.  Yeast once scared the pants off me, I buy refrigerated/frozen pie crust because I have flat given up on making it and plainly put, cake and I duke it out to this day.  So, these are a couple of recipes that work well for me.  I've made them time and again.  Firstly, who doesn't love yeast rolls?!  And secondly, the homemade pizza crust and sauce is one of our favorites.  The crust is pretty thick, so we always make garlic butter for dipping.  It's great for movie night with friends.

This one can be found here.

Classic Dinner Rolls
Photo courtesy of
all purpose flour
2 tbsp. sugar
1 envelope Fleishmann's Rapid-Rise Yeast
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup water
2 tbsp. butter or margarine

Combine 3/4 cup flour, undissolved yeast and salt in a mixing bowl (I use my Kitchen Aid mixer).  Heat milk, water and butter until very warm (120 - 130 degrees) - in my 1100 watt microwave I heat for 1 minute and it's perfect.  Add to flour mixture and beat 2 minutes at medium speed, scraping sides occasionally.  Add 1/4 cup flour and beat on high for 2 minutes.  Add a little over 1/4 cup flour to make a soft dough.  Knead on lightly floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 8 - 10 minutes.  (I use 8 minutes because anything more and I'm insane.)  Place in a cereal-size bowl, cover and let rest 10 minutes.  (While I'm waiting, I use this time to clean up my work space and grease an 8-inch cake pan.)  Now, divide dough into 12 pieces and roll into balls.  Place these in your cake pan, cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 30 minutes.  (If I'm making these during the winter when the wood stove's going, I place them near but, not too near the stove.  If not, I use a space heater in the bathroom because it's a small area and heats quickly or if it's summer, you can set them outside - out of the sun, of course.  Just some thoughts.)  Bake at 375 degrees for 18 - 20 minutes.  Brush with additional butter.

And this one can be found over here.

Traditional Pizza Crust
1 (1/4 oz.) envelope Rapi Rise active dry yeast
1 tbsp. sugar
1 1/4 cups warm water (105 - 115 degrees)
3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. salt
1 tbsp. olive oil
Photo courtesy of Paula Deen Magazine

In a 2-cup liquid measuring cup, combine yeast, sugar ,and water; let stand 5 minutes.  In a mixing bowl, combine flour and salt.  With the mixer on low, add yeast mixture and oil.  Continue mixing until it forms a ball.

On a lightly floured surface, turn dough out and knead for 5 minutes.  Place in a lightly greased bowl, turning to grease top.  Cover and let rise in a warm, draft-free place until doubled in size, about 30 minutes.  Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

On a lightly floured surface, roll dough out into an 18-inch circle (or you can make it rectangular, our favorite.)  Sprinkle a pizza stone or rectangular cookie sheet with cornmeal.  Place dough on top of stone/sheet, folding edges over to form crust (you can also stuff the crust with mozzarella cheese).  Prick dough with a fork.

(and just because you can't make pizza dough without a recipe for's this one.)

Pizza Sauce
1 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 - 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
2 tsp. Italian seasoning

In a medium sauce pan, heat oil over medium heat.  Add onion and garlic, and cook for 3 - 4 min. or until tender.  Stir in remaining ingredients; bring to a boil.  Reduce heat; simmer for 15 min., stirring often.

Now, spread pizza sauce over crust; sprinkle with mozzarella cheese.  Top evenly with sausage, pepperoni, ham and veggies of your choice.  Bake 15 - 20 min. or until crust is lightly browned.

Saturday, April 9, 2011


 These are recipes I used for my party over the weekend.  Hope you enjoy!

BLT Bites

Photo courtesy of  Taste of Home

16 - 20 cherry tomatoes
1 lb. bacon, cooked & crumbled
1/2 cup mayo
1/3 cup green onions
3 tbsp. Parmesan cheese
2 tbsp. parsley

Slice the top off each tomato, scoop out anddiscard pulp.  Invert tomatoes on a paper towel to drain.  In a small bowl, combine remaining ingredients.  Spoon mixture into a Ziploc bag and cut one of the corners off.  Pipe mixture into tomatoes.  Refrigerate for several hours.

Cucumber Sandwiches
1/2 cup mayo
1 - 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
1 envelope dry Italian dressing mix
dill weed
french baguette
Using an electric mixer, whip cream cheese until fluffy.  Then, add mayo and mix well.  Add dressing mix and dill weed and beat until smooth.  Slice cucumber and french baguette into thin pieces.  Smear the cream cheese mixture onto one side of each slice of french baguette and top with cucumber slice.

Party Ham Sandwich Bake
1 pkg. of baked dinner rolls (24), sliced in half
deli-sliced honey ham
1 - 8 oz. pkg. sliced Swiss cheese
1/2 onion, finely diced
4 tbsp. butter, melted
2 tbsp. Dijon mustard
honey, to taste

Place bottom halves of rolls in a 13" x 9" baking dish; spread mayo onto rolls.  Top with ham, cheese, onions and top halves of rolls.  Mix butter, mustard, and honey; brush onto rolls and cover with foil.  Bake 20 min. or until cheese is melted and bubbly.

Photo courtesy of
Note: I omitted the raspberries.

Tiramisu Trifle
1 - 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened
3 cups cold milk
2 pkgs. (4-serv. size ea.) instant vanilla pudding
1 - 8 oz. tub cool whip, thawed & divided
vanilla wafers
1/2 cup brewed coffee, strong & cooled
1 square semi-sweet baking chocolate, coarsely grated

Beat cream cheese with electric mixer until creamy.  Gradually beat in milk.  Add dry pudding mixes; mix well.  Stir in 2 cups of cool whip.  Dip each vanilla wafer in coffee and line the bottom and sides of a trifle bowl or 2 1/2 qt. bowl.  Top with half of pudding mixture and grated chocolate.  Repeat layers.  Top with remaining cool whip.  Refrigerate at least 2 hours.

Angel Lush
1 - 20 oz. can crushed pineapple
1 (4 serv. size) box vanilla pudding mix
Photo courtesy of
1 - 8 oz. container cool whip
1 box angel food cake mix (or buy one)
fruit to garnish (strawberries, blueberries, etc.)

Bake angel food cake as directed on box and cut into 3 layers.  Using an electric mixer, combine pineapple and pudding mix.  Stir in cool whip.  On a cake plate, place a layer of cake and top with some of the pudding mixture, alternate cake and pudding, ending with pudding.  Garnish with fruit and refrigerate 1 hour. 

Monday, April 4, 2011


Tonight I'm Restless.
with a capital R.
Thinking Illinois.
Wishing I was on that trip too.
I admit being a tad envious.

Moving on.  Funny, L and I were at soccer practice cacklin' like a bunch of hens with a couple other soccer moms.  All the while making plans for some serious camping and I couldn't be more excited!  I don't do winter well with all the staying indoors and bad weather, freezing conditions, etc.  Although, I do love snuggling up with a good book and a cuppa hot cinnamon plum tea or hot chocolate, or working on sewing projects.  I have been dying for it to warm up so we can go camping.  I live to be in the tent staring into the hot, starry summer night.  Cooking foil packets and kabobs over the fire.  Roasting marshmallows.  Teaching K how to read scary stories with that chilling voice.  There's nothing like roughin' it!  As long as it's warm.  Oh, it makes me edgy just thinking about it.

Moving on...again, before I start making camp-friendly dinner menus and packing the car.

K's first soccer game was this past weekend and I couldn't have been more excited.  Except it was freezing.  Even C complained that he was cold and that's a rarity.  The wind blew so hard and defiant, and to make it worse, the sun played peek-a-boo with the clouds and light sprinkles began as we head to the next sporting event.  Besides those opposing elements, it was a good Saturday.  We won 5 - 2 and it was a fierce game.

The man and his E.
He loves her so.
He prefers older women.

Today, she wasn't at practice.
He complained the ENTIRE time.
God help me.
They are the best of friends.
And she loves to wrestle him.
And he loves that she's not always a girly girl.

Strategy and
the pre-game pep talk.
Love the black smudge.
So tough.

Love the tongue.
Love the determination.
And the fancy goalkeeper jersey.
She's resilient.

This is one, among many with quick feet.
She's a scrapper.
And a slim, yet tall one,
who can eat you out of house and home in hours.
Have to root for her.

While waiting for subs,
you should always maintain super-cuteness.
It's necessary.
While her mama still gives her a hard time,
because it's her job afterall,
she's coming along and making great strides this season.

Also a cutie.
Superfast too.
With a serious boot to boot.
Also claims a younger sister on the team
who's following in her footsteps.

Love the bench.
What great teammates.

Another goal!

Yet another scrapper with quick feet.
And an unwavering spirit for triumph and victory.