Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Gobble, gobble

People.. don't faint. Ready?

My tree is UP and I have been listening to XM Christmas music for a few days now :) Check your pulse. hahaha

I tend to go from one extreme to the other - fashionably late.. or extremely early. I just figured since the kids were out of school and they are continually B-O-R-E-D that this would give them something to do. They like looking at all the ornaments they made over the years. Fits of laughing, rolling around on the floor and legs kicking in the air followed by gasps for air can be quite entertaining for all!

Hubby and I spent the better part of an afternoon looking at trees. Ours was destroyed in the storm. We upgraded! The tree is gorgeous and I'm so happy to have a nice, tall, wide tree that is prelit with berries and pinecones it to give it that "fresh cut" feel. It was the only one Rich and I agreed on and when he said to bring the buggy so he could load it up, I didn't hesitate! My man hates to shop as much as I do and well.. sometimes it works out great!

Today I made the icing for my cakes. MMMM... We are going to Rich's aunt house and I'm bringing carrot souffle, sweet potatoe casserole, chocolate cake with mint icing, and crockpot bread pudding! MMMMMMMMMMM There should be about 15-20 people there.. and it's always scrumptious.

After lunch we'll be headed to my parents for dessert and coffee. We'll be stuffed to the giblets and rolling around for days.

This weekend my dad and Rich are making sausage - perfect timing with the cold weather. MMMM.. maybe they will smoke some tasso too!

I love this time of year! I cannot wait to go shopping on Friday - though I really don't need anything, I want to take advantage of some great sales. Then it's home to wrap and put under the tree!!

yes, I know there is MORE to Cmas than decorations and trees and lights. But I"ll get to all that mushy stuff closer to Cmas.

I'm off to have coffee with gingerbread creamer and watch the Cmas tree lights glow in the corner of the living room while the AC blasts cool air LOL




Sunday, November 11, 2007

One down, many to go

What another busy weekend.

Friday was dinner with friends and then to the casino. I won! :) Whoohoo go me! AND, my friend won also! How cool is that!?!?

Saturday was spent at a company picnic. It was really fun - until the rain hit. Weeks and weeks of no rain then on this one day it decides to rain. Oh well.

Up early Sunday to attend early mass, madd dash to the store for flowers, met the family at a seafood place to celebrate my grandmother's 87th birthday.

The kids and I went shopping cause ya know.. they NEEDED stuff. Daniel picked up some clothes and so did Sarah.

I actually bought a Cmas gift! Granted, it's for the office party, but still! It's a start. And, besides, it's the first part of the season so I have to get it early.

I have promised myself this year I will not go overboard. Also, i'm trying to suggest things to do gift certs instead of THINGS to bring him.

Okay, it's almost 9 pm.. i can go to bed now. i'm pooped and my head is pounding :(

Friday, November 09, 2007

TGIF and the big surprise

Ahh, the weekend is here again! The week seemed to fly by.


Yesterday I was hungry for red beans and rice. In the south, when the cool weather starts up we eagerly watch the weather so we can get a gumbo going or red beans and rice, or basically anything that we can crank up the oven and cook. Until then, it's too darn hot to start the oven!


Seriously. We are 20 degrees warmer today than just 2 days ago. 20 DEGREES! Insane. This IS November. I hope we are not opening Cmas presents with the AC on this year.


So when I realized it was damp and chilly out yesterday, I dug in the freezer for some beans. I only found a ziplock of beans my grandmother had given me. Large red beans. Blah! I prefer the smaller ones. But my craving for beans was strong and I figured if I cooked them long enough SURELY they would get soft like the small ones. I may have to mash and mash.. but it would be okay. I was hungree for red beans and nothing was gonna stop me now. I was on a red bean mission.


Hmm... dried beans. It's 9 am, want them for supper, they need to soak a few hours and then cook for a few hours.. (doing math in head) Not enough time to cook them in the crockpot.


PRESSURE COOKER!


Popped into the internet - what did we do before the internet?? - and found oodles of recipes. I did a quick boil method (bring to a boil for 3 minutes, removed from heat and then cover for an hour). After the hour, I drained the water.. filled with fresh water and let it sit.


Around 5 p.m. I checked the water level making sure it was at least 2 inches above the beans, brought them to a boil, clamped on the lid and let it rip! In the meantime, I chopped the onion, celery, bell pepper and garlic. Twenty-five minutes later... BEANS! And gobs and gobs of gravy! Reduced to a simmer, tossed in my veggies and seasonings. Browned some sliced sausage in the skillet (we like it browned, but you can toss it in there like that). Added sausage to pot o' beans. Stirred, tasted, seasoned. Cooked rice.


In under an hour I had the whole thing done! And it made the BEST gravy! Thick and yummy. The beans were all soft. This may just be how I cook them from now on. The kids all had two bowls each. YUMMY.


Is it lunch time yet???


Earlier this week Rich got a surprise in the mail. He knew it was coming, just wasn't sure when.


This is what we ordered. You can read about it here:




Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Gimme more, gimme more!

Gimme more cool weather! Ahh, the cool front is here.

Time to get things ready for tomorrow and do some reading. I'm zipping along in my Bible. So many times I have tried to read it and it became so confusing, so I'd go back to reading it by jumping all around the scriptures. This time, it's reading like a novel and I cannot wait to see what happens next. (okay, so I know what happens, but it's so neat to read it.) For a long while I wanted to find something good to read. Nothing seemed to call to me. The endless books at the library looked interesting.. but they just filled my mind with fantasy and such. I wanted something good. Something to LEARN. That's when I picked up my bible again. This time I took it slow and and read a bit each night. Sometimes I cannot put it down! :)

I know.. to some it may sound weird.. but the older I get the stronger my craving to dig deeper into my faith. maybe it has something to do with surviving the hurricane through my faith? I know my faith is strong.. and it seriously is what kept me from REALLY going off the deep end at some points.. but I want more...

GIMME MORE, GIMME MORE!

Monday, November 05, 2007

Busy Bees!

Gosh, time sure flies!

Here are some random thoughts:

Community coffee (the BEST coffee) make a chocolate coffee. MMMM. It's really good! I had three cups - and 2 is usually my limit.

The weekend was jam packed. So much fun! I didn't get to the grocery store until Sunday evening! Insane!

Rich's package came today. He's gonna be so excited. I'm waiting to open it when he gets here. :) Normally, I cannot contain myself and rip into it LOL I know, just like a kid.

Keeping the house picked up pays off LOL need to vacuum today. Soon as I finish blogging.

Menu planning pays off!

I need a new cmas tree - prelit one! I'm splurging :)

The kids think I have done gone insane with all my "fake fruit" in the kitchen. The kitchen is done in fruits. DUH!

Getting dressed in the mornings pays off :)

I don't like it getting dark this early. Blah.

The chickens need to lay more eggs, but I'm afraid not gonna happen with the decreased daylight hours.

Need to get to the library, bank and book store.

The time changed has messed with my internal clock. Need Tylenol P.M. tonight.

Off to cook and clean. I love being at home :)