Saturday, May 31, 2008

Dinner this week

Another week has gone by and we are left to face this insurmountable question again . . . "Whats for dinner?"

Here at our home stead I always plan ahead, at least every two weeks as that is how we shop. I really enjoy shopping only twice a month, but sometimes I don't feel like cooking, like this week, and we have to slap stuff together. This past 3-4 days four of the six of us have come down with a cough/cold thing and mom feels to yucky to cook. So when shopping make sure you always have enough stuff on had to slap together . . . grilled cheese, french bread pizza, quesadillas, pancakes ~ you get the idea. Hoping to feel better soon and feel like cooking again, the kids hope so too ~ LOL With that, here is whats for dinner at our house this week:

Saturday: French Bread Pizza w/salad and pound cake

Sunday: Corn Chowder w/ garlic bread

Monday: Vegetable paprika w/salad

Tuesday: Blue coleslaw w/Salisbury steak & baked potato

Wednesday: Chicken Burritos w/salad ( still having bible study but cooks taking the summer off )

Thursday: Sesame chicken wings w/ South African yellow rice & steamed cabbage and carrots ( rice is a project for middle dd history unit study on Africa)

Friday: Chicken Alfredo w/steamed broccoli and garlic bread stixs

Whats for dinner at your house?

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Twins 4th birthday

Here are just a few pictures of the twin's 4Th birthday. It was a warm sunny day and we had the party after church on Sunday. Yesterday was their "real" b-day and my oldest ds made a cake to take to church with us. In so many ways it doesn't feel like it has been four years since their blessing. In other ways I find myself wondering why moms don't get the party on these "birth" days? Who did the work and who just showed up? Hmmmmmmmmmmm..........

It was a "Curious George" party and here is middle dd holding one of the fought - I mean sought over balloons! LOL

Here are the twins wearing the hats that middle dd made for everyone, oh so very "Curious George".

Here are the twins digging into their gifts.
Here is dd twin helping dad cut the cake.

The big prize of the day was that each of them received their first bike! It is all dd twin talked about for 3 months and she is getting better on hers. Unfortunately ds twin fell off his bike in the first fifteen minutes and is no longer interested in his!
Blessings, Beth Ann

Monday, May 26, 2008

The Meme thing

Hi ya'll. Wasn't going to post today, but got tagged by Amy for this Meme thing. Here is how it works. 1. The rules get posted at the beginning. 2. Each player answers the questions about themselves. 3. At the end of the post, the player ten tags five people and posts their names, then goes to their blogs and leaves them a comment, letting them know they've been tagged and asking them to read the player's blog. 4. Let the person who tagged you know you've posted your answer.

What were you doing 5 years ago? I had just gotten remarried 4 weeks earlier, and returned from our honeymoon in the Smokey Mt's.

What are 5 things (that were) on your to-do list for today? Hmmm lets see, taking it easy today. Laundry,clean up after twins b-day party yesterday, work on oldest dd gift, work in garden, make dinner.

What are 5 snacks you enjoy? Hummus w/wheat crackers, salsa and tortilla chips, hot buttered popcorn, extreme tots from Sonic, and .... hmmm chocolate in any shape or form~ LOL

What 5 things would you do if you were a billionaire? Buy an ocean front home on Edisto Island. Establish college funds for all 5 children and my grandson. Go full time in our RV. Establish scholarships for home schoolers. Give to God through several different venues.

What are 5 of your bad habits? Saying whats on my mind, before editing. Poor self discipline. Worrying. Sarcasm. Thin skinned.

What are 5 places you have lived? I have only lived three places my entire life.. Gaylord MI, Mesick MI and now in middle TN.

What are 5 jobs you have had? Book keeper at bank, nurse aid, Deli worker, Bulk Food manager and radio D.J.

What 5 people do you want to tag? The mad Cuisineart, Hansen Hootenanny, No place like home, Felicia's life happens and D's weight loss journey.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Menu for Memorial Day and rest of week

Happy Memorial week-end all. I wish each and everyone of you a great holiday, filled with fun and faith. It's always a big deal here at our house since the twins were born Memorial Day week-end, 2004.
So let me share what we are serving up this gateway into to summer............
Saturday: Since we had pizza for lunch yesterday, as a treat after b-day shopping for twins, we will pick up a leftover meal from last week that we missed for various reasons.... Home made vegetable egg rolls (made with portabella mushrooms) and pasta primavera
Sunday: We will be having the twins b-day party today after church...Grilled turkey dogs and hamburgers w/chips, three bean salad, deviled eggs and cucumber salad. Cake and ice cream for dessert!
Monday: Orzo & wild rice salad w/ garden salad and roasted pork loin
Tuesday: Layered Mexican casserole w/rainbow pasta salad
Wednesday: Church/mom's night off (Is the twins real birthday and we will bring a home made carrot cake)
Thursday: Stir fry green beans w/ baked white fish and brown rice
Friday: Sesame Buffalo wings w/steamed cabbage and carrots
Other cooking for the week includes but is not limited too......... Home made graham crackers, home made tortillas, home made ranch salad dressing, dehydrated eggplant "bacon", home made sauerkraut and of course a birthday cake!!!
Whats cooking at your homestead this week?
Blessings, Beth Ann

Friday, May 23, 2008

Happy Friday

Title says it all.

Sitting here with a cup of coffee, listening to the rain dance on the pool. Hoping it will be warm enough to swim soon. House is quiet, DH at work and two oldest children are spending the night at Grandpa D and Grandma S. They are going to help refinish the deck tomorrow if the weather allows. Twins are watching a little PBS/Curious George, their favorite. This all leaves me some quiet time to reflect.

I am meditating on our Wed. night ladies bible study class. I really enjoy the fellowship, catching up with the others and sometimes something we study will stick with me more than others. This past Wed. we were more jovial than usual and a tad boisterous. I had been ask the ladies to pray with me on some personal issues. In a nut shell, forgiveness. I have come to realize that I can't wait for others to take responsibility for their continues actions of hurtfulness, but I must forgive and let it go. Anyway, our faithful leader came across this bible verse, and I have had it running through my head the rest of the week.

Matthew 5:44 ~" But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you!"
(Life Application Study Bible)
My study notes include these insights ~ According to Jesus, it is more important to give justice and mercy that to receive it. By telling us not to retaliate, Jesus keeps us from taking the laws into our own hands. By loving and praying for our enemies, we can overcome evil with good.

So, that is where I am. I am lifting up in prayer several times a day the people who are unjust with me. I can already feel a sense of lightened as I trasfer this burden over to Jesus, as I should have done in the first place. Isn't it wonderful when your reading something and it seems as if the very page/verse were written just for you on that very day? Not only does God know every hair on our heads and whats in our hearts, but he knows when we are ready to hear His word on our troubles.

Blessings. Beth Ann

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Hanging in there

Just checking in real quick before church tonight, let you know that we are all doing fine. Only my dd and myself got sick, so all is back to normal at our house. That is assuming you are defining "normal" as something other then a setting on the washing machine.
Had a real hair raising experience yesterday. I am starting to look a bit like Medusa and am desperate for a hair cut. Called my lady and found out she no longer does hair!!!!!!!!!!! Any women reading this can sympathize I am sure. There is nothing worse than getting a hair dresser broke in, that means they do your hair the way YOU want - not the way THEY want, then they leave. I believe my oldest ds is more upset than me. Do you remember the old ZZ TOPP song, "Sharp dressed man"? That describes my son to a T. He dresses better than I do, has more jewelry than me and spends more time in the bathroom with his hair! He even complains that I never take him anywhere nice! LOL This amazes me since my oldest dd never really got into all the frills and stuff. Middle dd shows no interest either. Now youngest dd..... watch out! She is a frilly dress junkie looking for her next fix! At the age of 4 (a week from today) she will change cloths up to 3 times a day , if I don't stop here, as clean dresses and skirts come out of the dryer. Oldest ds will even take her in the bathroom (and tie it up more) and do her hair while she sits patiently. Cute to watch, bummer to live with. Guess I can live with it though, two out of five kids ain't bad - LOL Will keep you posted on the hair trauma.
Well off to water the garden and flowers then on to church!
Blessings, Beth Ann

Monday, May 19, 2008


Just dropping a quick note today, to let everyone know we are alive. We have some virus thingy going around here ~ again. It hit me first, about 1:33 Sunday morning ~ man the pain. Took me down all day Sunday, glad Zach was home. Then last night, just when I thought , "ah, tonight I will sleep good", Breanna got it. So from about 3:30 this morning on, I was up with Bre. Again, the gut wrenching pain. Her legs were shaking so bad! It only seems to last about 24 hours, but I hope no one else gets it. All this and our toilet is broken to boot! We have had a pretty bad week, last week. You name something, it's broke. You name a bill, and it's due. You name a family member, their upset with us. So I guess in the grander scheme of things having a broken toilet while everyone is having the stomach flu isn't that big a deal.

Well it's a new week and DH has the day off. So he is fixing toilet as we speak. He also sold some car parts, so we won't get our utilities shut off this month. So it looks like things are starting to look up. Now, if I could just get some understanding from family on choices that have to be made. I will be praying, hope you do too.

Blessings, Beth Ann

Friday, May 16, 2008

Going Postal

I just wanted to share an experience I had recently with the post office and see if I am the only one who feels are government makes no sense and isn't here to serve us at all.

Last Friday I took a bunch of over sized envelopes , reg. mail and two boxes to the post office. Nothing out of the ordinary there. However I did find it a tad annoying that one of the reg. cards I was mailing, at least I thought it was reg. since I bought it with the other Mothers day cards, was weighed as well and was 17 cents more than reg. postage. I paid it with out saying a word. I made small talk to the guy behind the counter. He took my boxes and weighed them, asked about insurance and I paid him. End of story? Guess not, or we wouldn't be here! LOL

The next day I see a big headline telling me that postage stamps are going up, again. I moan over this as I have a bunch to use up and now have to buy one cent stamps. Oh well. But what really got me was the reason for the price hike listed in the article. I named a $7 million dollar loss of revenue as the cause, since more people are not using the post office any more. So I am thinking to myself, " and the pay to fix this is to hike prices and penalize us?" Anyway........... The following Tuesday the mail truck comes and returns one of my boxes, listing that it is undeliverable. That is all it says on the tag. I ponder this and double check the address, and triple check the address, Nope, it is correct. I never really doubted it to begin with. So DH takes the box back down to the post office asks for an explanation. They look at it and shrug. They have no idea why it didn't get mailed. But if we would like to try again they would be glad to send it for another $7. What? It never left our town, it never left a 4 block radius of my house! DH refuses and comes back home. He tells me and I am verrrrrrry unhappy about this. I mean I just do not, I mean do not have an extra $7 to mail this box again. I feel they should try again or refund our money. They next day DH goes down and talks to the post master. Again no dice. My DH feels if they can read the address well enough to take money from his wife, then it is good enough to be read and delivered. Post Master is now irritated that DH thinks the government only wants his money. He says, "the government is not in the business of making money", oh and he won't refund our money either. So right now the box is sitting here in limbo. I am thinking this is to funny. They lost $7 million dollars last year, so not only are they raising prices but stealing money from citizens as well. Yea, that's gonna make me want to use them more!

So Mike, if your reading this... Now you know what happened to your fathers day gift from the kids!

Blessings, Beth Ann

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


Greetings all. Just sitting here having a cup of coffee before getting ready for church, and feeling extremely glad that the day is almost over! I'm sure we have all had days like that!

I recently finished reading two books, back to back, that were well enough done that I thought I would suggest them to others. I read many books, but brag about few. Our local library is starting a book club the first of next month and asking everyone to bring a list of five books to share with others. These two will be on my list.

How Starbucks saved my life: by Michael Gates Gill

The first book, lets just call it Starbucks, is a wonderful true story about a gentleman in the Autumn of his life, learning to start over and that money isn't everything. I feel most will get something out of this book ~ a peek at the inside world of the coffee capital, a look at how rich people view the little people, identify with working retail or how sometimes your priorities change and a light goes off. This book left we happy, hopeful, feeling like I wanted to write my own book and oh yea... craving coffee and chocolate covered espresso beans! It was truly refreshing to read a book were the main character/author took full responsibility for his poor choices and learned to live with the repercussions.

Playing for pizza: by John Grisham

The second book , lets just call it pizza, is a great down on your luck turned good story. I usually don't enjoy Grisham books. Matter fact the only one of his I ever read all the way through and though was good was "Skipping Christmas". Later it was made into a Tim Allen movie called "Christmas with the Kranks". If you enjoyed that book, Christmas, than you most likely enjoy this book. Both escape his usual genre and have a fanciful air about it with enough humanism for us all to identify with. A down and out football player can only get hired in Italy and all the culture shock is grand fun. The in depth food descriptions left me drooling and looking for affair on Orbitz. As with the previous book, by the end our hero's life has been reprioaratized, but this book leaves plenty of questions for there to be a sequel if the author wishes. Also leaves alot of room for interpitation, a book clubs dream! This book left me feeling upbeat, hungry, wanting to visit Italy, and hoping the author keeps up the good work by breaking from his publicists mold every now and then.

There you have it two great books I recommend. My next big find is "Swine not: by Jimmy Buffett", yep - the singer. It is based on a true story. I think I will add that to my book club list. That will give me three out of five, I am torn over the rest. I am a huge fan of Donna Andrews, I always laugh out load at all her books and find myself wanting to read snatches of them out load to share with others. I also extremely enjoy Lillian Jackson Bruan, the wonderful lady that brings us the "Cat who........." series. Of course Robin Jones Gunn and Karen Kingsbury always deliver a great Christian based story with right on target life questions and group discussions. I also try to keep up with the Yada Yada Prayer group, book series as well as the Maggie Sefton knitting mysteries...................... Oh my, this could go on forever as I haven't even brought up my favorite caterer - Goldie, by Diane Mott Davidson.......................

Just visit your local library and share your finds with me and a friend, pass it along.

Blessings, Beth Ann

Monday, May 12, 2008

Mothers Day and Menus'

Happy Monday all! Hope everyone had a pleasant Mothers day and week-end. The weather here in middle TN certainly did it's share to enhance ours, although it was a bit blustery yesterday!

We had Grandpa D and Grandma S over last night to cap off our week-end and S asked me this question, "what did you get for Mother's Day?" This is after she rattled off a whole list of things she received via mail since her boys live far away. So I shared with her that I had a two part M-day. On Saturday I went to the Farmer's Market in Franklin with my bff. This couldn't have happened with out my oldest ds watching the twins after DH left for work at noon. We enjoyed ourselves thoroughly and also squeezed in Wild Oats and a few more stops. Sunday started with DH bringing me coffee upstairs while I got ready for church. He painted my toe nails for me while I sat to drink it. He then presented my with my engagement ring, which had been in for repairs and a cleaning. I so was not expecting it yesterday and the gesture was soooo sweet! After an awesome service on the best mother of all (Mary) my family took me out for lunch at the local hot spot. When we got home the kids had some trinkets for me and DH had gotten me the steel tortilla press I wanted from The World Market (making them by hand is killer). Oh an every year at church on M-day the give out flower flats, a six pack. I was so happy with my day. Then we had D and S over for dinner with a S bringing an Ice cream cake, what more is there to life - LOL So I was puzzled by here response to my answer. She seemed disappointed in the "stuff" I didn't get. So I meditated on this overnight. My first response was to become unhappy with my lack of stuff as well. Then I thought, wait a minute...... maybe she is just not used to being happy with the gift of time and people. They are older, so they never have to worry about finding alone time any more and since their children moved away along time ago, they HAVE to be content with just stuff in the mail. So now I feel a bit sad for S, but I know that just by having them share our evening with us made it more special for both of us!

Well the farmers market was great! Not great prices, but just alot of fun. Trying to eat healthy is really becoming a chore. But I am recommitting to eating a mostly raw/non processed food diet. I am striving for only about 15% of my daily food being cooked, usually dinner. We have been doing this mostly anyway, but sometimes I feel myself start to slack, especially with me and my DH. Why is it that I make the kids eat better than me? Anyway, it works out well for all. We usually have home made granola, oatmeal or an occasional egg for breakfast with a banana and a whole grain bread. Lunch is mostly veggies, such as veggie tacos or subs. Today I am trying something new, eggplant BLT's. You slice the eggplant thin and marinade it, then dehydrate it for 24 hours. Will come out crisp and have a bacon like quality with no nitrates! Dinners here are mostly low carb meals. So with that said here is a peek at this weeks menu at my house.

Sat: Home made pizza (one cheese/one ham and pineapple) w/ peach salsa and tortilla chips ( from Wild Oats)

Sun: M-day, pork tenderloin (with my awesome meat rub) w/ stuffing and green beans

Mon: Home made crab soup w/ rainbow pasta salad

Tue: Crock pot meat loaf w/ mashed sweet potato and salad

Wed: Church/ mom's night off

Thur: Skillet Italian Casserole w/ salad and garlic bread

Fri: Spicy lentils w/ creamy new potatoes and grilled chicken breast

Other cooking this week includes but is not limited to......................... Home made soft tortillas, home made sauerkraut, eggplant "bacon", faux "corn dogs", home made graham crackers, and home made ranch dressing.

I encourage everyone to visit their local farmers market and support local efforts in eating healthy. What is cooking at your house this week?

Blessings, Beth Ann

Thursday, May 08, 2008

"Rainy Days and Cloggy Drains always get me down"

I really don't have anything new to say, I just wanted to be able to use that stanza ~ LOL
Another wet and wild day here. Finely got our fix it guy to come out and fix our clogged tub. For the past three days it has been blocked and my DH has been working on it, between his reg. job and all his side car jobs. He did put out some of the twins toys, so we were apprehensive of what Mr. Fix - it would find. Well he said he found the second largest hair ball he has ever saw! Didn't ask about the largest one. He did also pull out another twin toy. He had the hair in a bucket and asked if I wanted to keep it to show DH. I said, "sure.....He's been wondering where it was going"! LOL LOL LOL LOL I crack me up!!!!!! (DH has alot less hair then when we met)
Well I need to play another rousing round of phone tag with oldest dd, and I am worried about middle dd as she went with a friend to the carnival. Think they can get electrocuted on the Tilt = a - Whirl?
Blessings, Beth Ann

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Camping movies to get you in the mood!

Today I want to just do a brief mention of my top three picks of camping movies. There is something special and unique about each one and hopefully one to match each individuals personality. We always try to have a few movies with us in case of rain, maybe you might want to do the same and will consider one of these great movies.

My first pick is RV the movie, with Robin Williams. I am not a big fan in general of slap stick comedy and there is plenty here. If you enjoy Williams , you will enjoy the movie. The same can be said about RVing, if you enjoy it; you will find something in this movie to tickle your funny bone. They are first timers, so that in it's self is funny. One of my personal fav's is the scene where they find out raccoons are living in the RV oven. It then proceeds to show all the family running out of the RV, screaming of course, followed by four large furry raccoons. Now I don't know about your camper, but MINE won't hold a pizza pan let alone four adult raccoons! LOL By the end of the movie our hero is much put upon, his own fault, and bedraggled, again his own fault. And the movie manages to convey the message that family is a number one priority and maybe all those RV/trailers/campers on the road you see aren't fanatics after all. Maybe they already know what the rest of us just found out, camping in any form is a wonderful way to keep our families close, have fun and see the land we love.

My second pick isn't out in DVD form yet, but will be in the next six to eight weeks. The Ride of our Lives is a 12 part mini-series that I caught on NPT or PBS to the rest of us. It is currently out in Hardback, soft cover, CD and eBook forms just check your library or favorite book seller. I haven't read the book but seeing this autobiographical series on TV was heart warming for all of us with older loved ones. It is the true adventures of NBC corespondent Mike Leonard of the Today show and his trip cross country with his elderly parents. He rented two RV's, one for himself and his parents and one for three of his children who are his production team on this effort, and took his parents on their last trip cross America to see the site of their youth. Everyone will find something to identify with as the family dynamics are played out and the family races to get home in time for Mike's fourth child, a daughter, to give birth to their first grandchild. Again, they are first timers and there is a heart stopping scene where one of the children trash the rented Winnebago by taking a corner to sharp. There is Mike's moms fears of riding in the RV as it sways as big rigs go by. There is plenty of background info and pictures in typical Mike Leonard fashion as he voice overs the reasons his parents are the way they are. And don't all of us wish we know why our parents ticked? This is pulled of with so much laughter, dignity , tears and respect that it leaves you wanting more.

And finely, the old classic The Long Long Trailer with Lucy and Desi. This really had to be the first and still one of the best camping movies ever. Not much to say except a real winner. They play newlyweds, a stretch for them, and they deiced to pull a far to big trailer on a way to small car cross country so that she can be near him while he works. There are many funny scenes along the way including the learning to back in in screen and my favorite; she wants a memento from all the places they stop, so she picks a rock from every location. Well all that weight starts to add up and takes it toll as they try to climb the mountains! And don't miss the screen where Lucy tries to cook dinner while being towed down the road (been there / done that ) ~ hysterical!

Well I don't know about you, but all of a sudden I have an urge to dig out one of these movies and have a great family night, right at home! If you can't get away to camp this week=end, rent a fun camping movie!

Blessings, Beth Ann

Monday, May 05, 2008

Old Stone Fort Camping

Here are some pictures from our camping trip last week at Old Stone Fort Campground in neighboring Coffee County (gotta love a place named coffee! )

First day it rained most the time, here is our fire smoldering in the middle of a muddy quagmire.

Here is my oldest ds sitting at our picnic table watching the rain . It is all part of camping.

Here is my DH sitting behind some lovely flowering tree that I found and picked while trying to "get more bars in more locations". We dug out some playing cards that included all fifty states, their capitals and a fun fact. Yes they were real playing cards and we played go-fish under our canopy. The other two cards to make up a pack of 52 we Washington DC and Purto Rico (US territory). Picked they up at the HS conference in OH. Kids had a blast. They love the uninterrupted time with no interruptions.

Here is youngest ds hamming it up for the camera. His big sister is behind him counting cards to make sure no one is cheating.

Here is middle dd cleaning up for lunch. DH is going to cook on his Coleman (right side of pic) and there is my Gulf Shores AL cup, mentioned in my coffee blog back in March.

Day two of trip was sunnier, but still muddy if you can tell. DH set up tripod to cook on but the kids commandeered it to dry shoes on over the fire! Here are my two sons Z and E.

Shoes on tripod over fire to dry. Whats for dinner at your house? LOL
Blessings, Beth

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Write a book?

Okay, here's the deal; all day long I have been thinking (feel free to interject obsessing here) about a comment a few different people have made to me. They tell me I should write a book. The last mention of this was about a week ago. Sometimes I hear a variation of this," your so funny you should do stand up". So I have spent all day thinking about this. Why? Maybe because I have just finished two great books in a row, will blog about them in a couple days, or more than likely I am feeling poor (like the rest of America) and feel this would be a great way to earn big bucks from home. I would still be able to home school, travel and not forget the little people (feel free to interject your name here). See, a win ~ win situation. So what would I write about? Would people want to hear about my childhood? It wasn't until I was in my late twenty's and in therapy with my oldest dd that I found out that I had come from this new fangled thing called a dysfunctional home. Lots of people do. Would they want to hear how I strove my whole life seeking perfection and acceptance from everyone I met to make up for the lack of attention at home? Once again many of you are saying, ditto. How about when I woke up in my early thirty's and decided I need to clean house and get a life? Maybe... Okay lets try this, uprooting my family, moving to TN and remarrying? Probably getting warmer here. I know, how about all the blunders a Yankee made at a small southern rural radio station. Hmmmmm think WKRP but with banjo music. Oh! Here is where it gets entertaining, how about when God thought it would be so cool to give an old crusty lady who really doesn't enjoy children...TWINS!!! I can hear you snickering out there. YES, YOU! Yes it is tons of fun around here since the twins arrived. Now that we are just wrapping up potty training the fun train rolls on. Do you think people want to hear that every time my twin son goes potty he forgets to put his pants back on. It is nothing to be walking through the house and see a little neckid (that is southern for naked) white butt run by or to walk into a room and see him on the couch scratching himself (guess the apple doesn't fall far from the tree). Or how about the conversation I had with my twin dd yesterday in the bathroom. She is sitting on the potty (with no insert because she is a big girl, something she lords over her twin brothers head) and I am sitting on the edge of the tub waiting to assist in any way I can, when she asks my why boys have bigger pee-pee's than girls. Anyone here wanna take this one?

Well I am still not sure about this writing thing or how to go about doing it, but here is what I am thinking for a title~ "Confessions of a home schooling, RVing, God fearing, OCD Mom!" What do you think? Please post if you have any advice here or just some smart comment. LOL

Blessings, Beth Ann

whats for dinner this week?

Hi all! We survived the storms and tornadoes last night and are gearing up for another wonderful week in middle TN! Remember my week runs from Sat. to Fri. No good reason why, just a hold over from when I worked retail. Here is what our menu this week looks like:

Sat: Home made pizza (photo at left) with salad

Sun: Mushroom Beef in a cream sauce over brown rice with mixed steam veggies on the side

Mon: Happy Cinco de Mayo! Sirloin stew with bread machine Mexican corn bread and into pie (never made this before but hear it taste like pecan pie)

Tue: slow cooker Maui chicken (from last week ~ DH took me out to dinner after we camped) served over brown rice with steamed carrots on the side

Wed: Church/mom's night off!

Thurs: Crock pot pork chops with stuffing and green beans

Fri: Parmesan chix wings (my ds most favorite meal) with Spanish rice and salad

Other cooking this week at my house is, but not limited too................ Home made bread, made spinach garlic bread last night. I have an awesome no fat/no oil bread machine cookbook that I enjoy using. We also made home made bread machine bagels last night. My oldest ds has learned to make these to perfection! I am still having problems working this crazy thing, so I accidentally posted the bagel pics at the top, sorry. Anyway that is my son you making them and baking them. I will also make about 4 loaves of reg. bread for toast and what not. I will also make home made ranch dressing and white sauce. When ever a recipe calls for canned soup (aka ~ sodium in a can) I make my own white sauce in place of it. I save a ton of money as food cost rise and never once has anyone noticed, matter of fact everyone usually rave over these meals such as the tuna casserole I made for lunch yesterday. As always, if you have any questions or want any recipes just post and let me know. I am only to happy to share any info with you all!
Blessings, Beth Ann

Friday, May 02, 2008

Enchanted April

Here is the first chance I have had to comment on my Women of Faith (women's church group) dinner and a movie. First let me just say it was absolutely MARVELOUS (using my best Billy Crystal voice)! It is not often I get out of the house with no kids or husband. Only about half the ladies signed up, so one of the women graciously allowed us to use her home. It was a much more relaxed atmosphere and we all relaxed and enjoyed some non church fellowship.

Here is a quick pic I took with my phone to show you how beautiful the table looked. It has been many moons since I sat down at a table with linen napkins, china and crystal. I felt like a Queen and no one spilled milk out of a plastic cup on me, or whined about their veggies..... well there was this one lady.......

After a wonderful meal, spaghetti to get us in the Italian mood for our movie, we had an awesome dessert with great coffee! We cleaned up, moved some chairs and settled into to watch a 1991 release called "Enchanted April". No big names, matter of fact the only name I recognized was Alfred Molina. It is set in a castle in Italy where four women from different backgrounds and at different cross roads of their lives spend the month of April, renting the castle. It was a cute movie I might have otherwise skipped over, and recommend it highly. Some of it's recurring themas were positive thinking, unselfish love, being a good help meet. After the movie, which came with popcorn ~ thanks S!, we had some group discussion on these topics. I think we all left feeling warmer towards each other, a little better understood and wanting to do it again!

Our fearless leader picked up this study guide at our local LIFEWAY store, I believe it is called Chicks dinner and a movie or something similar. If ya need to know, just post and I will get the info. Anyway, it listed 12 movies with corresponding meals to match the theme. Then you have a sign up and everyone brings an ingredient, which means you have the fun of watching your friends cook! Like I brought the pasta for our Italian get away. I personally try to be healthier, so I like the wheat pasta fortified with omega 3. It is denser and takes some getting use to, but it sticks with ya! Well no one else had ever had this, but they were game and all seemed to enjoy it. So that was cool, some of us got to try new things. Including one older lady said she had never had frozen garlic bread in foil before! Can you imagine? You live, you learn.

I give this night five stars * * * * * or an A++++++, either way I recommend it and hope you all get a chance real soon to fellowship.

Blessings, Beth Ann

Maui Chicken

I had a reader post that she would enjoy this crock pot recipe. I am only to happy to comply and encourage anyone else to request a recipe that peaks their interest!

Slow Cooker Maui Chicken

6 boneless chicken breast
2 Tbsp. oil
14 1/2 oz. chicken broth
20 oz. pineapple chunks
1/4 cup vinegar
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
1 garlic clove, minced
1 green pepper, chopped
3 Tbsp. cornstarch
1/4 cup water

1. Brown chicken in oil, then place in slow cooker.

2. Combine remaining ingredients and pour over chicken.

3. Cover. Cook on high 4-6 hours.

4. Serve over rice.

Makes 6 servings.

Blessings, Beth Ann

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Stressing it

Greetings all. Back from camping and trying to get organized. Still having computer issues as well.

I am just going to take a minute to vent here and try to decompress. I know I am having PMS, but sometimes life just builds up . I also had a killer headache for a couple days, as my b/p meds ran out and it took me that long to fill it. So I guess it is just a conglomeration of things.

The big things are my family in MI. While we were camping my oldest dd called to tell me her grandpa great passed away and that her Nana was sick too. I already knew about the grandma issue, as my ex-husband had called me upset. He clearly wanted me to comfort him and tell him it would be alright. I couldn't do it. I have so many issues with this man. Most of them would clear up with a simple "I'm sorry". But I am not holding my breath and I couldn't do for him what he never did for me. So there you have it, I am a bad person and a bad Christian. I need to work on my forgiveness of him. Anyway, so I tell my children what is going on. They are smart and compassionate children. They understand about their grandpa great and are concerned about their Nana. But I still have them looking at me for solutions to the issues at hand, which are we really can't go up to MI. It cost far to much money to go to a place we are not treated well. They also don't understand why their dad doesn't take them up to MI, or for that matter why he doesn't visit it them except once a year when I pay for it. Don't even know if I will be able to afford to send flowers for the funeral at this point, still waiting on my dd to give me the details on that. I know this is all normal stuff, but can you see the stress building? I am also missing my oldest dd measurably! I haven't seen my grandson in a year and find myself lying awake at night trying to figure out we can sell so we will have money to see them. Big sigh. On top of this another friend of mines DH is very sick and needs surgery. I felt really pulled on this and knew I wasn't any good to her in my current state. Then I get mad at myself for feeling guilty when so many people are just as bad if not worse off. Like my friend Amy at church, check out her blog at the right, and her struggle with a Haitian adoption. She is truly one of the bravest and strongest women I have the pleasure of knowing!

Last night I didn't even want to go to church, I felt that sad. I finely gave in to my kids pleading and went. I figured I could use the support of the women's group and their prayers. I was disappointed. I know the lady who runs the group meant well, but her words and attitude came out wrong. I tried to explain things to group just as I did above, when it came time for prayer request. When she offered up the prayer she did pray for my family and the kids in MI but then she prayed , " and please let Beth's children stop giving her looks", and she said it in a kind of narky voice. She has never been blessed with kids, so maybe she missed what I was trying to get at. It's not the looks! I can handle that and try my best to be strong for them. It is the sense of a parent letting your kids down when they are counting on you to make sense out of a world that doesn't. It's a very hopeless feelings, makes you feel like a failure right or wrong. On top of this, when I got there several people came up to me and let me know about my friend and here husband. I was made to feel like less then a friend since I couldn't deal with her stuff and mine. Anyway, was just looking for some support, got none, came home still in a funk.

Well got some b/p meds in me and have shaken most of my headache and am starting to feel a tad better. Also got some props from my bff. Guess I will pull out of this soon. Just need to vent a little, thanks for listening. I am sure most of you know what I am going through and are going through it too. Be strong and remember that ~ "with God we can do all things"

The Spirit Himself hears witness with our spirit that we are children of God ~ Romans 8:16

God comforts us that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble ~ 2Corinthians 1: 3-4

Blessings, Beth Ann