Monday, December 21, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

Monday: leftovers

Tuesday: Breakfast for dinner - sausage gravy, biscuits and eggs

Wednesday: going to an annual Gumbo dinner at some dear friends. I'm making a Caramel Fudge Cheesecake

Thursday: Christmas Eve Party - our family always tries to get together for an appetizer night. My brothers & sisters & I all try to outdo each other and the preious year, by trying new recipes for yummy snacks & candies.

Friday: Breakfast - Cinnamon Rolls
Christmas Dinner will be at my Mom's new place. Ham with all the fixings...mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, cream cheese corn, rolls, cranberries & cottage cheese, develed eggs, and lots of pie. We're going to bring out my Grandma's old china in her memory.

Saturday: homemade pizzas

Sunday: hopefully leftover ham ;)

Check out for more great menu ideas.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Sharing Christmas

This was our first time to do Operation Christmas Child. What a blessing this was!

Ashleigh and Logan found it hard to understand that there are children who may have never had crayons or hair ribbons before. That some children cant just run to Wal-mart for whatever they need.

Fred and I were amazed to learn a child can only enroll in Op Christmas Child once in their lifetime!! Once they recieve a shoebox, they cant enroll again. To think how many million shoeboxes go out....and there still arent enough.

So many children.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Monday's Simple Woman's Daybook

FOR TODAY ~ December 7th, 2009

Outside my window... a clear, cold night. No snow around this neck of the woods.

I am thinking...that the guy currently on Deal or No Deal really needs to TAKE THE DEAL and quit being greedy!

I am thankful for... three healthy rambunctious children

I am wearing... flannel jammies with snowmen on them

I am remembering... my Grandma Edie. Born 1920. Passed away two years ago yesterday.

I am finish and post this weeks menu plan.

I am currently reading... getting ready to start the new Karen Kingsbury "Shades of Blue"

I am see some snow soon!

On my mind... the windshield needing replaced on our suv before we can pass inspection.

Pondering these words... yada, yada, yada.

From the kitchen... hot cranberry apple cider

Around the house... baby is the cozy glow of our old-fashioned christmas tree.

One of my favorite things...Christmas songs sung by Dean, Frank, & Bing. Love!

From my picture journal...

Please visit Peggy's blog to learn how to share your own Simple Woman's Daybook.

This week's Menu

Monday: Dirty Rice, corn, and cornbread. And a crockpot of Hot Cranberry Apple Cider.
Wednesday: Meatloaf, garlic mashed potatoes, asparagus
Thursday: Leftovers Night
Friday: Family Night - pizza & a movie/games
Saturday: Hearty Bean Soup (i leave out the parsnips)
Sunday: undecided still....

What do you have planned for this week? Be sure and check out more menus at

Monday, November 30, 2009

Monday's Simple Woman's Daybook - Nov 30th

For today ~ November 30th, 2009

Outside my window...its a clear, cold night. The almost-full moon is shining brightly. And the neighbor's wood smoke is being carried over on the brisk breeze.
I am thinking...about snow and winter. And dreaming for a "real" house, in the country with several fireplaces...and a large veranda with a swing to snuggle on, under a cozy red afghan, while drinking hot cocoa on a cold night like tonight.
I am thankful for....our dear Costa Rican friends who found out today that they will become American citizens in just 90 days! Which is nothing after waiting and trying and waiting some more, for 9 years.
I am warm flannel jammies with snowmen on them.
I am little Grandma. It's been almost two yrs since she passed on to her forever home. She was a special lady. She loved.
I am make a new country christmas wreath to hang on our front door.
I am reading...Creative Correction - Extraordinary Ideas for Everyday Discipline, by Lisa Whelchel. So far its been good, most of the ideas are a bit on the older side for my little ones. But it has helped ignite a spark in my own mind.
I am hoping... tomorrow is a better day.
On my mind...a lot of STUFF. Frustrations and dissapointments.
From the learning rooms...Logan has been working on motor-skills. Loves working with scissors, which terrifies his poor mother! Ashleigh is sounding out every word she sees now, attempting to read everything. We watched Akeela and the Bee the other night, so she is now fascinated with spelling bees. This morning, my Mom taught her how to properly stand and repeat the word before she spelled each one. Ashleigh loved it.
Noticing that...facebook is messed up again. Wonder why they can't seem to stay on top of it?!
Pondering these words...all's well that ends well. What is that really supposed to mean?! It doesnt make any sense to me.
From the kitchen...leftover turkey & ham from Thanksgiving Dinners. As well as pumpkin & pecan pie :)
Around the house...everyone else has gone to bed. I'm enjoying the solitude. Wishing I could enjoy it longer, but am already having trouble keeping my eyes open.
One of my favorite things...donut store coffee
From my picture three musketeers in their pj's

Visit the Simple Woman's Daybook to learn how you can share your simple daybook with others too.

Monday's Menu

Monday: Chow Mein with Venison Steak

Tuesday: Crockpot Night - Nacho Potato Soup ....taking it to MOPS

Wednesday: hot turkey & gravy sandwiches, sweet potatoes (using up leftovers, can you tell?)

Thursday: Scalloped Potatoes & Ham ...I will add shredded cheddar cheese to the recipe. (more leftovers put to good use :)

Friday: Family Movie & pizza night....thinking we order pizza this week.

Saturday: the radio station's Christmas Party, so will be some yummy catered prime rib dinner

Sunday: Breakfast for Dinner -
So there's my menu for this week! What do you have planned? For motivation and tons of ideas check out Menu Plan Monday.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


november is like waiting for the beginning…

the beginning of the holiday season, the first snowfall, turkey dinner, warm mittens, hot chocolate, family young and old, sharing new traditions with our children, remembering ones who can’t be with us, creating a home of love, warmth, and joy.

Happy Thanksgiving

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

Monday: Bacon Cheeseburgers, french fries

Tuesday: Crockpot Night - Baked Potato Soup (it didnt happen last week, plus I found a better recipe that I am going to try. will post later if its good!)

Wednesday: Beef Stew & Biscuits

Thursday: THANKSGIVING....dinner at some dear Messianic Jewish friends

Friday: Family Movie & Homemade PizzaNight- I'm thinking maybe Stromboli. We will probably be setting up our tree and decorating the house that day. And it has become tradition to have stromboli, bake up some sugar cookies, and listen to Michael W Smith's Christmas cds.

Saturday: our family Thanksgiving. At my younger sister's house about an hour away.

Sunday: Breakfast for dinner....

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Logan's 3rd Birthday

Logan is three years old now. It amazes me how quickly he is becoming a big boy.

He wanted a Wiggles cake, which I attempted. not too pretty :/

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Menu Plan....Wednesday?

This week has been a little crazy...with needing to butcher & process the 10 point buck Fred got, as well as a big MOPS project deadline, and let's not forget Logan's 3rd birthday!! So I was unable to find the "spare time" to post my menu for this week.

Here it is...a couple days late :)

Monday: Freezer Pleaser - bbq pork chops, fried potatoes, broccoli with a cheese sauce
I had a bag of homemade bbq sauce in the freezer that I dumped on top of the prok and popped in the oven for an hour. Easy :)
Tuesday: Logan's birthday dinner - his pick- spaghetti & bread, corn, and chocolate cake
Wednesday: Zesty Chicken Tortilla Bake, salad
Thursday: Crockpot night - Panera's Creamy Potato Soup
Friday: Family Movie & Homemade Pizza night
Saturday: Our church fellowship group meets/mexican night. I think my husband is making his Green Chili Verde
Sunday: Venison Roast, carrots, and either my mom's homemade noodles or yorkshire pudding

Monday, November 16, 2009

Monday's Simple Woman's Daybook

For today ~ Monday November 16th, 2009

Outside my window... the fog is thick and the drizzly rain is still coming down. Looks like it should for mid-november in the ozarks. Yucky for all the deer hunters though. Thankful my husband got his 10 point buck today!

I am thinking...about Logan's birthday tomorrow. Amazed he is going to be three already! And baby Keira will be 3 months old tomorrow as well.

I am thankful for....our veteran's. Our freedom. And the re-newed sense of patriotism that seem to be stirring up in our nation.

I am new jeans :) Two sizes smaller than I expected to be!!

I am remembering...when Ashleigh was 3 months old...and 3 yrs old. Seem so long ago.

I am finish painting wooden stars for the fall wreaths we are making for tomorrow night's Creative Activity at MOPS.

I am reading...Tommy Tenney's Prayers of a God Chaser

I am hoping... to get this week's menu finished and posted today. As well as, set-up for MOPS, birthday shopping this eve, vaccuming and fold laundry.

On my can I better prioritize my time to fit in all that needs to be done. So many demands.

From the learning rooms...Ashleigh just started learning about money in Math class. I was showing her the front and back of a penny, when I realized the new pennies are different! They have Abe Lincoln on the back, reading a book.
And Logan's BIG learning adventure this past week has been potty training! I foolishly have had him in pull-ups for the last year. So went straight over to big boy underwear, except for trips out of the house and bedtime. We started last Monday and spent the first few days washing a lot of under-roos and wondering if he would ever get it. But by about day 4 he started understanding. Hooray! Today has been his best day yet.

Noticing house looks overwhelmed :(

Pondering these words...when it rains, it pours.

From the kitchen...Snowman Poop! (aka Oreo Truffles and Red Velvet Truffles)

Around the house...Logan napping...and Ash & Grandma have been secretly making decorations for his b'day tomorrow.

One of my favorite things...sweet baby smiles.

From my picture journal...

A look into my simple life....and others at Peggy's Simple Woman's Daybook Blog
FOR TODAY...Nov 16th 2009

Monday, November 9, 2009

Menu Plan Monday - Nov 9th 09

Monday: BBQ Chicken, mashed potatoes, green beans

Tuesday: Ham and Scalloped Potatoes,

Wednesday: Crockpot Night- Salisbury Steak Deluxe with buttered noodles

Thursday: Catalina Cranberry Chicken, Artisan Bread, a veggie...

Friday: Family Movie Night -Pizza Stromboli

Saturday: going to a Chili Cookoff/Adoption Fundraiser where my husband will be judging

Sunday: still undecided....sigh

So there's my menu for this week! What do you have planned? For motivation and tons of ideas check out Menu Plan Monday.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Monday's Daybook

A look into my simple life....and others at Peggy's Simple Woman's Daybook Blog

FOR TODAY...Nov 2nd 2009

Outside my window... the sky is clear, with a full moon. Today was a gorgeous way to start November! Low 70's, sunny.

I am thinking...about chocolate.

I am thankful for....God's provisions. How He blesses us with the tiny little desires of our hearts.

I am jean capris and brown"christian chic" t shirt.

I am remembering...some of the many Cary Grant movies I've seen. Watched part of North to Northwest this evening. Its been awhile since I've watched one of his movies. What a great old actor.

I am have a busy week...with homeschool co-op classes, Ashleigh's class' Tea Party, MOPS, and working our church's Women's Ministry booth at a Expo this weekend.

I am reading...the new Holiday Ebook from the Old Schoolhouse Magazine.

I am hoping... that the christian radio station has a blessed share-a-thon this week. Their mission project is Bible Sticks (the entire Bible on a computer thumb drive) to send overseas to soldiers.

On my the time change this past weekend has thrown off our schedule! I need to get to bed!

From the learning we enjoyed a nature walk. Collected fall leaves to press. Studied the different types of trees.

Noticing that...the downstairs carpet really looks amazing after my mom and I spent all afternoon shampooing it. We threw open the windows and doors to air out the house and dry the floors.

Pondering these words...from Hillsong's "Hosanna".

"Heal my heart and make it clean
Open up my eyes to the things unseen
Show me how to love like you have loved me Break my heart from what breaks yours
Everything I am for your kingdoms cause
As I walk from earth to Eternity"

From the kitchen...Oatmeal Butterscotch Chip Cookies :) Mmmm

Around the creature was stirring, not even a mouse. Just the mommy tapping away on her laptop. Enjoying the quiet house with everyone tucked in bed...just waiting for Itty Bitty to wake up for her late night feeding.

One of my favorite things...watching Deal or No Deal.

From my picture from our nature walk today.

Menu Plan Monday - Nov 2nd

The family dinner table is a place of communion, fellowship and a means of reconnecting with those we care about the most. Over a simple dinner of scrambled eggs or more elaborate family fare of meatloaf and mashed potatoes, important stuff happens. Relationships are built, the news of the day is exchanged and coming events are discussed. More importantly, memories are made for both adults and children. One day, your child will look back on all those dinners around the family table with fondness. One day, we'll will look back wistfully, actually missing the chaos of trying to get everyone to the table while the meal was still hot!

here's my menu for this week. What do you have planned? For motivation and tons of ideas check out Menu Plan Monday.

Monday: Crockpot night - Cheese Stuffed Meatloaf, baked acorn squash

Wednesday: leftovers

Thursday: an old family I grew up with -Ediths Casserole (recipe below) with peas and wheat artisan bread

Friday: Family Movie & homemade pizza night - cheese; ham&pineapple; and a sausage, onion, & mushroom

Saturday: Freezer Pleaser - lasagna, garlic bread, salad

Sunday: Breakfast for Dinner - b'fast burritoes, hashbrowns, apple slices

Edith's Casserole
Cook until tender - 1 lb hamburger
1 med onion, chopped
1 cup celery, chopped
1/2 cup green pepper, chopped ( I skip these! uck)
Add - 1/8 tsp baking soda
1 qt of tomatoes, chopped or stewed...doesn't matter
1 tsp salt
Bring to a boil.
Grease a 13x9 casserole dish. Put 8 oz dry egg noodles in the bottom. Pour hot mixture over. Cover and bake at 350 for 20 minutes. Uncover and top with grated chedder. Bake 10 minutes longer.

Free Holiday Ebook

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Monday, October 26, 2009

Mondays Simple Woman's Daybook

A look into my simple life....and others at Peggy's Simple Woman's Daybook Blog

FOR TODAY...October 26th

Outside my window... its is gray and chilly once again. Saturday, a gorgeous sunny fall day, might have been our last chance to see the trees in all their glorious autumn splendor.

I am thinking...about how nice a long hot bubble bath or massage would be right now.

I am thankful for...the dear boy who is snuggling on my lap while I blog. I'm gthankful he isn't too big to cuddle with mommy...yet.

I am yoga pants and my red church tshirt. And actually got my hair in a ponytail today. Hair is getting long enough...thinking about a new short do.

I am my Dad loved Marguerite Henry books. Our favorite was "Brighty of the Grand Canyon". He would read it aloud to us during the winter. This morning I taught my kids the silly braying donkey song that he taught us!

I am have to sort and change out baby clothes again already. Keira is outgrowing many of her 0-3 months outfits. She is also smiling, cooing, and reaching for stuff now too though :) They grow so fast!

I am reading...AGAINST ALL ODDS by Irene Hannon. Its book 1 of the Heroes of Quantico series. I accidently read #2 first! Its a christian novel about an FBI Hostage Rescue Team.

I am hoping... for a mild winter....with lots of snow. But not to cold, and NO ice storms!

On my frustrating it is to teach children not to interrupt.

From the learning rooms...phonics, spelling, math, bible reading, penmanship. oh...and play-doh.

Noticing that...its getting chilly in the house. Need to turn the furnace on.

Pondering these words..."oh how He loves us". From a new David Crowder song. Love it.

From the kitchen...we're fixing greasy cheeseburgers and french fries tonight :)

Around the house...have moved some furniture around. Put some stuff in the storage shed, so that we can shampoo carpets before winter.

One of my favorite things...a rainy day with a good book and hot chocolate.

From my picture journal...our fall family picture. Taken saturday.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Yummy/Easy Artisan Bread

Time: About 45 minutes plus about 3 hours’ resting and rising

1 1/2 tablespoons yeast
1 1/2 tablespoons salt
6 1/2 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour, more for dusting dough

1. In a large bowl or plastic container, mix yeast and salt into 3 cups lukewarm water (about 100 degrees). Stir in flour, mixing until there are no dry patches. Dough will be quite loose. Cover, but not with an airtight lid. Let dough rise at room temperature 1 & 1/2 hours (or up to 5 hours).
2. Bake at this point or refrigerate, covered, for as long as two weeks. When ready to bake, sprinkle a little flour on dough and cut off a grapefruit-size piece with serrated knife. (I divided the dough in half and made 2 large loaves instead.) Turn dough in hands to lightly stretch surface, creating a rounded top and a lumpy bottom. Put dough on pizza peel sprinkled with cornmeal; let rest 40 minutes. Repeat with remaining dough or refrigerate it.

3. Place broiler pan on bottom of oven. Place baking stone on middle rack and turn oven to 450 degrees; heat stone at that temperature for 20 minutes.

4. Dust dough with flour, slash top with serrated or very sharp knife three times. Slide onto stone. Pour one cup hot water into broiler pan and shut oven quickly to trap steam. Bake until well browned, about 30 minutes. Cool completely.

Yield: 4 loaves.

Variation: If not using stone, stretch rounded dough into oval and place in a greased, nonstick loaf pan. Let rest 40 minutes if fresh, an extra hour if refrigerated. Heat oven to 450 degrees for 5 minutes. Place pan on middle rack.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Family Heirlooms

"God is an amazing God- He blesses us in the most astonishing ways. He gave you the precious gift of parenthood. He knows whom you are dealing with and He loves your children far more than any parent can imagine, so take your concerns directly to the Lord!" Maggie Hogan

We spent the afternoon playing at the park. It was a gorgeous fall day. 72 degrees. The breeze was nice and cool, perfect for Ashleigh & Logan to fly their kite.
And just cool enough for Keira to wear the little sweater that her Grandma Barb made, with a little pink bonnet from her Great-Grandma Edie whom she never got to meet. They were originally Ashleigh's and have been passed down. Maybe some day they'll be an old family heirloom? ;)
I love this picture of her in them. She is such a little doll baby.

I am grateful that God knows my children better than I. He knows the issues I deal with and struggle through in parenting these unique little hearts and minds. I pray that He guides my words and hand in all that we do. So that someday, it won't just be little crocheted sweaters we're passing down...but character, values, and generational blessings.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Menu Plan Monday - Oct 19th

Monday: dinner at some friends - fajitas, beans, chips & white queso dip

Tuesday: Roasted chicken, rice, peas

Wednesday: Crockpot Night - Minestrone, Artisan Bread

Thursday: Freezer Pleaser - Spaghetti & Meatballs

Friday: leftovers night

Saturday: church group weenie hot dogs, chili, and smores!

Sunday: Breakfast for Dinner - Breakfast Burritos

What do you have planned for dinner this week?
To be inspired by over 400 more menus - head over and visit Menu Plan Monday at

Monday, October 19, 2009

Monday's Simple Woman's Daybook - Oct 19th

A look into my simple life....and others at Peggy's Simple Woman's Daybook Blog

FOR TODAY...October 19th

Outside my window... a gorgeous sunny autumn day for the kids to play outside! We've had cabin fever with all the chilly rainy days last week.

I am thinking...that Logan is too little to be saying "thats just not cool Mom"

I am thankful for... a freezer full of meat for the winter. Ready to start using some of the soup bones!

I am wearing... my flannel pj pants and a tshirt. Can't believe I admitted that! I will be getting dressed before we go to friend's for supper ;)

I am set the tv to record "Castle" and "Diners, Drive Ins & Dives" this evening.

I am going... to try taking some family pictures of the kids tomorrow.

I am reading...Deceived by James Scott Bell

I am hoping... to start a new writing project soon. Been holding off til we became a bit more adjusted with having a baby in the house.

On my mind... the highs & lows of parenting. How difficult it is to teach/train little ones...without focusing all on the negative. Have been having a lot of disciplanary issues, feel like what we've been doing isn't working. Any ideas or suggestions?

From the learning rooms... as Peggy @ Simple Woman's daybook said "outside living". The kids loved beiing outdoors today. I did work on some phonics with Ashleigh while Logan was napping.

Noticing that... honeybees are out en masse today.

Pondering these words... "It is the sweet, simple things of life which are the real ones after all." - Laura Ingalls Wilder

From the kitchen... kitchen is clean and clear for the day. Heading over to some friends for fajitas tonight.

Around the house... my pumkin pie candle is burning on the counter. A fall breeze is coming in the back screen door. My mom is watching fox news....and baby Keira is cooing. We've finished the cleaning chores and laundry for the day. Enjoying a quiet afternoon.

One of my favorite things...roly poly babies :)

From my picture journal..."chubby cheeks"

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Pumpkin Butter

~Pumpkin Butter~
I ran across this recipe on another homeschooler's blog last week. Somehow, I have never heard of pumpkin butter! But being such a big fan of autumn and anything pumpkiny...I knew we had to try it. So we turned it into a homeschool cooking class :) My mom helped Ashleigh make it, since I was occupied feeding Baby Keira.

15 oz of pure pumpkin - 2/3 cup brown sugar - 1/4 cup honey
1 Tbsp lemon juice - 1 tsp ground cinnamon - 1/8 tsp ground clove

Combine pumpkin, sugar, honey, lemon juice, cinnamon and cloves in medium, heavy-duty saucepan.

Bring to a boil over medium-high heat; reduce heat to low. Cook, stirring frequently, for 20 to 25 minutes or until thickened.

Serve with biscuits, breads and corn muffins. Store in airtight container in refrigerator for up to 2 months.

All I can say is...Yummo! Very very delish. Its spicy like apple butter, while tasting like pumpkin pie. This recipe is definately a keeper! I think next time we'll make a larger batch and put it in canning jars. Would make great little gifts. A little jelly jar of pumpkin butter with a loaf of fresh baked bread.
Can you smell it.....? Spicy, warm pumpkin, toasted bread, coffee brewing, for an afternoon snack next to the fireplace. Snuggled all up in an afghan, on a misty fall day.


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