Sunday, December 26, 2010

Christmas Day at our house

I was up at 5am to begin the family Christmas dinner. Most preped the night before but still alot yet to do when your cooking for a big bunch. Stuff the turkey, make the dressing, roast the prime rib, make the gravy. Rolls done, pie done, veggies done.  Charlie assits with the final meal prepping.  I've always loved cooking for my family and our Holiday meal together is very special to me. Still lots of time to relax together, enjoy our coffee and share our personal gift exchange with one another. Our 35th Christmas. We are blessed.

The kids began by one. We started the pictures of course as each family arrived. Never can have to many pictures at Christmas. We ended up taking over 100 pictures. The little ones waited patiently with great anticipation. Organizing the gifts and getting ready to tear in.  They went full blast opening their stacks of gifts. Don't think they would ever be able to take turns opeing one gift at a time as they watched one another. Maybe one day when they get alittle older.  Its fun now watching them at this age.

We decided this year that the adults would draw a name for secret santa and also have our first ever white elephant gift exchange.  Great decision. This was alot of fun and guessing we will do it now every year. Lots of stealing going on as all the gifts were great choices.  It was a wonderful Christmas and we are blessed to be able to share it together as a family.  The house is quite now, I'm worn out and unfortunately have to work tomorrow. Need to decide how long to leave up the decorations. hmmm  What a Merry Christmas! Perfect

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Watercolor effect

Charlie took one of his pictures and with photoshop turned it into a watercolor

A few pictures of the tree

Charlie pulled out our first sony digital camera. One we bought years ago because it had a great zoom for sports. He decided to read up on the many other features it also had that we probably never used. It's a big camera, but took some great close up pictures.  I had Ella look into one of the reflective ornaments so he could capture a bit of a differnt angle.  I like how it turned out..

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Lights Action!

I love my chalk board, but even more than ever now. My hubby brought power to it, along with a time switch.  Doesn't get much better than that.  Every holiday will be up in lights!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Happy Birthday to our first born son.

Thirtyfour years ago we were blessed with our first child, our son Charlie. It was a cold snowy winter night in Danville Illinois when I went into labor. Charlie was working a night shift at an elementary school maintaince. We were trying to recall how I contacted him to let him know I was on may wayt to the hospital, (no cell phones way back then) neither one of us could recall, hence the importance of journaling.  We both we unsure what to expect, and excited at the same time.  A last minute decision was to deliver the baby by C-Section, baby's head appreared to be to big to fit out. Lucky me, very little labor but enough to know I was happy not to have to experience much more. Our Healthly baby boy came into the world at 10:38pm. We were both so young, but eagar to begin our lives as new parents.
 Tonight we celebrated Charlie's 34th birthday with him, his family and a few close friends. We are so proud of the fine young man he's become. You can't really ask for anything more than that. The years pass and before you know it your children have children of their own.  Family memories are the best.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Day Two-

Ok two steps forward and one back. Helped Charlie with front yard landscaping. The great thing about desert landscapping is you can get away with doing it about every 3-4 months, however we did manage to fill the entire back of his truck bed.  Then off to the dump to unload.  Ok I have to confess the guy unloading right next to us left me something that i was compelled to bring back home. You've heard of Trash to treasures.  Couldn't resist. Two picture frames and an awesome file box, I did throw out the all the guys court papers he left in it tho.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Getting Organized and then some

My 21 day challenge begins today, with getting organized. I'm sure this stems from my childhood, and not liking clutter. By no means am I a neat freak, however clutter free and organized makes me smile and smiling is always a great end result. So I begin day one of my 21 day challenge packing away my little Halloween treasures until next year. Which of course also means moving on to unpacking my little turkey's.  oh yeah also need to change my blog background......

21 Day Challenge with Rhonna

21 Day Challenge  This is such a great daily inspirational journey that Rhonna has created for all of us to join in. day ONE here we go.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Carrot cake Birthday Cupcakes

My baby boy's 23rd Birthday

Celebrating by cooking a birthday dinner for Randall and family. What sounds good.

   Amy and Randall

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Finally a completed project

Well I know it's been at least 6 months or longer that I found this great 35x47 frame at Hobby Lobby with the glass broke out and knew i wanted to make something with it. But it stops being a great find if it sits empty on the floor for 6 months.  I put some of the blame on my son Randall as he was going to get me a large piece of sheet metal for it from a coworker. Well months went by and no sheet metal. as it didn't look like Randalls friend was going to come through for me.  Plus I just got tired of moving the large frame around as it kept getting it the way laying on the floor.  I knew i wanted to make a magnetic chalkboard. Every day i drive right by a sheet metal business so I decided to throw the frame in the truck and stop to see if I could get a piece of metal cut to fit.. I was able to get a custom cut that fit perfect. Next stop home depot to get a piece of thin mdf cut to go behind the sheet metal to give it a tight secure fit. I also purchased a can of spray primer, very important. This must go on any piece your going to use chalk board paint with.  2 coats of primer and 3 coats of chalkboard paint rolled on. Before pulling out the chalk, Wait 3 days for paint to cure, this is also important.  Put it all together, hung it in our hallway to have fun with. Now just got to finish my halloween banner as it's the middle of october already!.

Happy Haunting

House of 3 Halloween Phantom Banner can be found here.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Time to Decorate

Although it's still in the triple digits here in Arizona, I think it's time to start pulling out the fall/halloween decorations. We can at least dream of fall and the colors changing.  Here's a favorite Halloween project. The only cost is perhaps the canvas, everything else comes from what we all have, our scrapbook stash.  I started with a 16x20 canvas from Michaels. Primed it with Gesso, as this helps the scrapbook paper ahere better. I also painted the canvas orange for all the exposed areas. I  cut 2x2 and 2x4 pieces of my scrap papers, added some halloween embelishments and fun ribbons.  The best part is I've taken halloween pictures of the grandkid over the years and resized so they are small enough to randomly add to the canvas. They enjoy looking back at all their many costumes.  I may need to make a bigger canvas.

So easy and so much fun knowing your using up product you already have tucked away in those drawers.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Subway Art Party!

I love the look of subway art. thanks to Jen at tattertots and jello for hosting a Subway Art Party.  There were several ideas that really caught my eye. The romance and also the addresses. Since we've been married over 35 years wasn't sure I would be able to remember the actual street addresess but we did recall all names of the streets we lived on.  I purchased a 2x4 piece of MDF at home depot. They cut it in half so I had 2 2x2 pieces.  I knew I also wanted to give it a cavas thickness so I purchased 1x2 firing strips, and had them cut into 2ft pieces, giving me a total of 8. I purchased some really cheap paint at Michaels, 99 cents for a bottle large enough to do at least 10, and water based so easy clean up. I used a nail gun and attached the 2ft furing strips to the back of each piece of MDF. Painted black.  They are many different ways the actual lettering was accomplished. For my first attempt I decided to use my cricut and white scrapbook paper.  After doing a dry layout I then modpoded all the letters. Using a T-square to keep my lines as straight as possible. I let dry then brushed modpodge over the entire piece.
I liked the finished product but my second one will be a variation of font sizes and numbers.

I've already picked my words for the second one celebrating our 35th wedding anniversary, had a photo print made of it until I decide exactly my method for my second subway sign. For now it hangs on our refrigerator. 

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Our 35th Wedding Anniversary

It was just another day at work, in April 1975, however one that would change my life forever.  That night at work our paths crossed for the first time.  I was serving drinks, he was sitting in the lounge reading the classified adds looking for a place to rent while playing baseball that summer in Danville.  Our meeting was by chance, and had I not been working that night our paths would have never crossed. This is where our story begins. Looking back now I can imagine how shocked my parents were when we told them 4 months later that we were going to get married, not to mention planning a wedding in 8 weeks. Heck back then it took 6 weeks just to get invitations ordered. Surprisingly enough, my parents were supportive of our decision to marry, and gave us a beautiful wedding we will remember and cherish forever. I'm so blessed to have such an amazing husband, 35 years and counting and still the love of my life!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

German Chocolate Cupcakes

Saturday morning baking. german chocolate cupcakes. Found the receipe on How does she? First cupcakes Ive ever made from scratch, (not from a box) even the german chocolate icing. Charlie gives them a big thumbs up!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Mindy Gledhill - Anchor

Beautiful Singer Songwriter Mindy Gledhill

How Does She?

found a fun new blog today How Does She? a big thanks to Jen at Tatter tots and jello and she's also sharing a great halloween give away so hurry go take a peak, bet you can't resit. What a cute quick gift to make and keep one for your self. I love count downs, to anything, but halloween is so fun and so colorful. the days are just not long enough to blog and create!
Extra kits available

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Cooking Lesson 101

So while Andrea was off getting a new hair cut I thought I would put the grand kids to work. Well not really work, I was teaching them both how to cook. You know the verse, "give a man a fish he'll eat for a day, teach him to fish he'll never go hungry". How true. Breaded pork tenderloins were on the menu.
first started with thin cut pork chops. dallas tenderized the meat! makes them big and thin. ella floured and seasoned each pork chop, then we dipped in egg bath and breaded with fine bread crumbs. Sauteed slowly about 2-3 min on each side or till golden brown. Sliced some fresh tomatoes, onions and lettuce.
They were YUMMY! and the kids got a good little cooking lesson to boot. Plus Ella originally said she didn't like pork, but I told her all cooks have to try their food before serving to their guests. well to her surprise she liked them!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Weekend Warriors



One of my biggest pet peves is laminate sheets on exposed cabinets. When we picked out the cabinets for our home, we selected Cherry wood. Builder only offered, Maple natual, oak and Cherry. We have a beautiful 12 foot island. Unfortuantely the builder like all builders will cut corners where and when ever they can and finish all exposed cabinet backs with a veneer laminate sheets. I've always hated the laminate. They didn't look all that bad when we first moved in 7 years ago, but over time, Cherry wood will continue to darken, laminate being "fake" wanna like wood, doesn't.  So a project that I've wanted to do for at least the last 3-4 years is put real wood on the back and ends of my island and paint them black, as it's very difficult to match stains when using different types of wood species. So with the help of my loving hubby the weekend warrior project was on. All we needed to purchase was the beadboard slates that tounge and grove into one another and a can of black satin paint.  We didn't want a shinny gloss finish as the satin gives it more of a piece of furniture look to it. Also replaced the 4 white outlets with black outlets. (**make sure you turn off the power first). We Installed the wood slates in an evening, and painted the next morning. All that's left to do is put back all the wood floor corner round. We love how it turned out but the best part of course is we did it ourselves!

Monday, August 30, 2010

Rachael Rays 30 Minute Meal

I happen to be watching Rachael Ray last week throw together one of her 30 minute meals, Teriyaki Pork with fresh peppers and pineapple, served over rice. So I thought I would give it a shot.
Cooking for over 35 years and it's the first time I've cooked using fresh ginger. The Receipe is so easy, and all fresh ingredients so good for you to. Sweet, and just a bit spicy. You can watch Rachael here along with the receipe plus to get your taste buds working heres a few of my pictures of my own. With something this quick and easy to make why eat out?

Friday, August 27, 2010

Father Daughter Ride to Flagstaff

Charlie and April did their first ride to Flagstaff cool mountains for the weekend. Little hot getting out of the Phoenix area but once you start up the mountains the tempatures are perfect for nice ride.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

It's Lisa Leonard's Birthday!

It's Lisa's birthday and look what she's giving away!  What a great giveaway You have to visit her blog. I love her living room and the new coffee table she made over.  Lisa's blog is one of my favorites, and her custome jewlery is over the top beautiful!  Need to post my favorite cake to be entered into her give away drawing.

Devils food is the entire families favorite. I love making it in pizza pans, that way you end up with nice thin layers. Make my own icing. Cream cheese, powered sugar and cool whip. Light and fluffy. Starting making cupcakes with same receipe, they go fast. I use the giant cupcake pans, big hit with the grandkids!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

That was then this is Now.

Russian Family Reunion Show Low Arizona. What a great weekend. More pictures to follow.

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