Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Randomness

The week after Thanksgiving and I am so very tired of a casserole. I didn't serve one vegetable that wasn't casseroled. My Grandmother would have been so proud, but by Sunday I was craving corn from a can!

Samuel made it home from his Boy Scout trip at about 10:30 Sunday night. One of the cars in their convoy kept breaking down, which made them much later than anticipated. He had a great time, even though he didn't call me. Not one time. He says that no one brought their phone chargers on the trip, and the phones were all dying. I think we need to conduct a class on always being prepared for these boys!! HA!

Our house is decorated for Christmas. I have scaled back on my decorations over the years and don't have very many any more. I was thinking about having a party but I only have one room decorated. That wouldn't make for a very fun party, would it?! Well, it might be fun but not very festive!

Tonight begins the hurried, busy time of December. I'm so excited! We have Christmas parties, and places to go and people to see this month. I can't wait!

Do you have a busy month planned?

Julie

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Turkey Times-South

This was taken right after we ate Thanksgiving dinner at my house Thursday. We were stuffed! We had so much food. I went a little overboard on veggies this year. It seemed a bit gluttonous, but we're eating it every meal until its gone! HA!

When I was cooking Thursday morning. Really I was just managing the over, everything had been prepared on Wednesday. Anyway... I asked everyone if we were dressing for dinner. I laughed as I looked at my motley looking crew, no one had on matching clothes, a couple had shorts on. But a little while later here walks in Daniel with a polo and khaki pants on. I was so pleased. What a sweet boy. Then Anna came in dressed in a cute little outfit she put together herself. Then Samuel came in with khaki's, a dress shirt, tie and a sportcoat that was a few sizes too small.

I went and put on my clothes and even some pearls. It was Thanksgiving after all.

My other two boys didn't feel the need to get dressed for dinner, but we allowed them in the picture anyway!

After lunch some friends stopped by and then Stephen and I took the twins hunting. And it rained. And rained! Daniel and I sat in the blind, but David and Stephen stood under trees. Needless to say, we didn't stay long! It rained the rest of the night. But it was a fun memory!

Friday morning began a wee bit earlier than I liked. Samuel headed out with the Boy Scouts to hike the trail at Vicksburg, camp and then head out to the USS Alabama in Mobile to spend Saturday night. He was excited. I've yet to hear from him. He best call soon!

We then headed to the Bulldog Breakfast. Since there was no school, they didn't eat until 9:30 which meant I was able to help. It was fun until Anna smashed her finger in a door. It looked bad but it seems to be in good working order now.

David and Stephen went hunting again (still no deer), and Daniel, Anna and I headed to Walmart. I wasn't much in the shopping mood, I guess because Abby was in Memphis having all the fun. So, we headed home to get ready for the ballgame. Man, it was cold!!! We won, so sitting through a 37 degree football game was worth it!!!

What did you do this weekend?

Julie

Friday, November 26, 2010

Turkey Times - Northeast


"How does my turkey look?"
We had a wonderful Thanksgiving at my Aunt Babs house in Memphis. It was Henry's first Thanksgiving. Last year I sat in my chair in my den, wearing pajamas, and Randall brought me food on a TV tray that my dear mother-in-law had brought to us. I was on bed rest, days away from meeting my baby boy for the first time. So crazy to think that sweet baby is already a big ole turkey boy on our hip!




Spending the holiday with my fraternal side of the family was so much fun. Our cousin Hollye is more like a sister to us than a cousin. We are a tight little group. She and I carved the fried turkey and insisted that a photo be taken with the best cut of meat being placed on the platter. I love being with people wired like me. It is so nice to not have to explain yourself, excuse yourself or hide yourself with the ole kin folk...I love that!


I am so thankful for a healthy, happy, active and handsome little boy who lets me dress him up in crazy outfits for every holiday. You may laugh at me but I love it. He will only be able to dress like this for a short window of time before he is called names...so I have to get it in while time allows!



I could not wait to watch the parade with Henry for the first time. We rushed to Hollye's Thanksgiving morning to watch it with she and Claire. It was so fun to watch Henry react to all the colors and music. I loved making that memory at Hollye's. Randall and I met for the first time at Hollye's house. I love that house!



Henry got to play with his Grandaddy. Grandaddy is always making him ride the horsey to town. Henry is not so sure about that horsey just yet! Do you think Henry looks like my Daddy? I think he does sometimes. I will look at Henry when he looks like Daddy and say, "Well hello there Bob S!"


Grandaddy loves his mouth tricks and Henry is quite fond of them too. Henry tries to mimic him. It is cute. My Daddy is a crazy fella and he always makes the kiddos laugh. I am glad they laugh.


Daddy's wife, Connie loved our sweet Henry spending Thanksgiving with her. Henry is pretty fond of her too. She loves our babies like her own. We are blessed to have her in our family.


Hollye let Henry take all the Black Friday ads and rip them up and spread them all over her den floor. It was an incredible, happy mess. He really liked playing at her house on Thanksgiving, of course. Hollye lives across the street from her mama, so it makes visiting them very convenient. Her mama is Aunt Babs, in case you had not put two and two together yet.



Claire is Hollye's daughter, and one of my favorite kiddos. She loves to help me take care of Henry. Claire is not crazy about babies, except for Henry. She says, "oh, he is so cute". I enjoy the help she gives me and I take full advantage of it. I think it would not be good to have an older child because I am pretty sure they would run away from home. Poor Claire gets used and abused, but she says she loves it. We love that sweet girl!


Henry experienced his first Black Friday shopping trip. He was a cute little trooper.


Aunt Babs, Hollye, Claire and I enjoyed shopping with our little reindeer boy. He was sporting the first of many Christmas outfits....of course! I am not sure I will make a habit of shopping on Black Friday with him though. At times it was a little much for him...and his mama!


When we got home from Memphis we had a special surprise visit from Paige. She is Charlie Kate's mama and my dear friend from college. She brought her new boyfriend over to meet us. They were in town visiting his family for the day. We were so excited to see her and let Henry play a farm game on her iPhone.



We had a wonderful Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday. We missed all the other family we did not get to see. We are blessed to have family in lots of places, yet it is impossible to see them all at the holidays. A bittersweet time, for sure. I hope you had a blessed Thanksgiving, had good food, got some hugs, had some laughs, and got some rest!



Abby

Food Friday

Are you stuffed from turkey and dressing? Have you been shopping already this morning? I am a positive on both of those! Whew...I do love it and I am so excited about Food Friday in Decemeber!
Tis the season to get in the kitchen and cook up all kinds of sugary treats!
I love, love, love making Christmas tins of sweets and sharing them with family and friends. Randall actually enjoys it too. Last year Henry sat in his bouncey seat asleep while we made our Christmas goodies. This year I am sure he will play a more active role!

This is what the top of my fridge looks like at Christmas. It makes me happy. The big plate came from the resale shop in Julie's town for $5...a brand new Hallmark plate in the package. The santa cookie jar came from a friend in Mississippi. The ornament cookie jar was bought for me to a give as a gift a few years ago but I kept it for myself! The cute little snowman was from Randall's birth mother one year...when she liked me! LOL. But honestly, she doesn't care for me much, but I loved her cute gifts when she did.
And this is my prize cookie jar. My Daddy's wife, Connie gave me this the year we moved. She had it made to match my crazy black kitchen. I adore it. Julie got one that year also and it is beautiful. It has a handpainted santa on it. This is the jar that the cookies go in!
Here is one of the cookies that will be in the cookie jar this Christmas season:
Goo-Goos
Every man in my family loves a Goo Goo! My husband, father-in-law, daddy, brother-in-law, grandfathers and uncles love a Goo Goo.
16 oz dry roasted peanuts
12 oz chocolate or almond bark
add 1/2 cup peanut butter (optional...I don't always add it)
Melt bark. Dump nuts in by 1/3 cup until mixed well. Dip spoonfuls on wax paper and let dry. Try not to eat them all at once!

We also put peanut butter on Ritz crackers and dip them in chocolate and almond bark. We love bark at this house! Randall's job is to melt it and I dip it. We also use the term "cookie" lightly at our house, as you can see.
And someone told this little foodie that Santa was coming....and Mama was making cookies!

This little Mama is also hosting a cookie exchange next week, so I best get busy in the kitchen and get off here!
Happy Food Friday!
Abby

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

This week in 1986


I Love 80's music. I can't tell you the name of any songs, or who sings any songs. But I love 80's music! It doesn't make sense, but when do I ever make sense?!HA!

The other night I was reading my Kindle (surprised?) and Stephen was flipping through the channels (surprised?). He stopped on the Sirrius station that plays 80's music. Ther were playing the top 40 countdown from that week in 1986. Oh, the memories.

I listened and read, read and listened. And then I got to thinking about 1986.

That week 24 years ago was not a happy one for me. I had been dating a boy that had made some wrong choices and I was so terribly sad and heartbroken that I couldn't imagine being happy again.

CAN YOU IMAGINE?? I was 16, and thought that I wouldn't be happy again! I'm so glad I got over my melodramatic phase of life. HA!

So, as I'm laying in bed thinking that this week in the year 2010 is SO much better than 1986 Stephen mentioned that we spent everyday together that week in 24 years ago. I told him we most certainly did not. And he reminded me that in 1986 we had 2 classes together and in one of them we sat next to each other and were in the same group.

We had spent everyday together that week in 1986. He said he made me happy that week. He didn't even know what I had been thinking about, he surely didn't know what was going on in my mind back in 1986.

But, he was right. He probably had made me happy that week. He always did something to make me laugh, or hit him. I guess he just wanted me to touch him. He says he loved me even then. How sweet is that? When my heart was broken by some boy, Stephen was thinking that he would like to date me and marry me one day.

Today I'm so very thankful for my husband. When I try to imagine my life with someone else, well, I just can't. He is the one God made for me.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Thankful For The Birthday Boy

34 years ago a cute little boy was born in a small Mississippi town in the Dirty Delta, and for that I am most thankful. He grew up to be such an upstanding, fine young man and for that I am even more thankful.
I am so thankful he chose me to be his bride. We have had a fun almost 8 years of marriage. This was taken at Alcatraz. I am so blessed to have a husband who will go do crazy things with me....like watch me run 26.2 miles in San Francisco, and in return make me go to Alcatraz with him. (That is where this photo was taken...we were there at dark...eck!) I am also thankful that he was not too proud to wear that pullover because he looks at this picture and almost dies each time. He was cold and had to buy something to keep himself warm before we got on the boat, and this is all he could find. Nothing screams "tourist" louder than that pullover!
He is also the sweet, giving husband who took me to see the Rockettes on his 28th birthday, which was also the opening day of duck season. For that I am very thankful...and can assure you I still hear about it all these years later! I am thankful for his ability to never forget the little things.
I am thankful he is such a wonderful daddy to our sweet baby boy. What a blessing it is to watch him love Henry like he does. It is neat to see how he just became a daddy last Dec 2nd as though he knew exactly what to do. I just love it. I am so thankful for a husband who is a devoted daddy.

I am thankful for his witty sense of humor and that no matter where we travel he has to stop and take photos with statues. I am thankful that he is a hard working man who also knows how to switch gears and have a good time. Yet, I am most thankful he loves Jesus. I am very thankful Jesus gave me this precious man and that today I can wish him a very happy birthday!

Happy Birthday, Randall Wayne!
and Happy Birthday to Daddy's sweet wife, Connie Sue!!
Abby

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Beary Cute

I am thankful for this cute little booger bear...my sweet baby boy.



Abby

Friday, November 19, 2010

Food Friday

This week I had the privilege to help with the annual food drive for our local food bank. I am a thankful supporter of the area food bank. I serve on the development committee, I delivered senior packs until it got too emotional for me, and I give of our family treasure when possible. I can honestly say that is a cause in which I give my time, talent and treasure! I love the idea of helping meet the most basic need. What a blessing to help feed the hungry. Can you imagine being hungry, not having food in your cabinets and having no money to buy any? I can't imagine and I hope to never experience it firsthand.
My Meemaw always gave to the Union Rescue Mission at the holidays. I remember the joy it gave her and how she would talk about it with passion. The year she died I gave a donation to the Union Rescue Mission in memory of her and I gave every year after that until we moved out of the area. Now I give to our local food bank. I love how she taught me the joy of giving....and she did not even realize she was teaching me.

This Thanksgiving our little turkey will help provide Thanksgiving meals to 10 families in our community. I loved signing his name on all 10 of those cards more than I have enjoyed signing his name on anything else up to this point! What a blessing to have a little treasure to share with those less fortunate this year, and what a blessing to teach our little boy about the joy of giving.
I remember delivering Thanksgiving meals in laundry baskets to young mothers when I was an Acteen. The smiles on those faces are stamped on my heart. I hope Henry will grow up and remember times like these and teach his children the joy of giving.
Happy Food Friday!
Abby

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Random Gratitude

I love this girl.
This is Julie's youngest, Anna. She makes me smile. Today I was reminded what a blessing she is to our crew. Julie told her to tell me what she wanted for Christmas and she got out the toy catalog and went to town! That made me laugh because her brothers just spouted off a few things and went on their way. I love that she took her time and went to the wishing well, so to speak. Nothing like a toy catalog when you are a little girl! So, she picked out an expensive toy and showed it to Julie. Julie told her it was too expensive. She then responded, "It is ONLY $59.98!" Oh, to be wide-eyed, innocent and have no concept of money. I am thankful for this encounter today. What a wonderful reminder of how sweet innocence is!

I am thankful for this mess upstairs in our craft room/office.
It means we are 2 weeks away from having a 1st birthday celebration for our sweet Henry Patton. It means we survived a year of late night, early mornings and learning how to parent. It means we have a healthy baby boy who is loved by many who will come celebrate with us. It means we had some spare change to buy supplies and I had spare time to make most everything else. It means we will have a house full of loved ones in a few weeks and an event for me to plan....and we all know how I love to host a gathering! What a bounty of things to be thankful for in this mess of party stuff!


I am thankful for warm beds on a cold morning.
I am thankful for this little mess of covers I am greeted with each morning when I go lift my big, growing baby out of his bed. I am thankful we have heat to turn on and knock the chill out of the air. I am thankful we have each other to bundle up with in our bed and watch Mickey Mouse Clubhouse some mornings when we don't have an early agenda. What a blessing each new day is at our house.

I am appreciative of this mess.
My husbands home office. I am blessed to have him work from home, when he is not planting, harvesting or traveling to meetings. I am blessed to have him work in the den most of the time (in my chair...cough, cough), and not up here where his main mess is. I am blessed to have him at home to help me with things, eat lunch with me, grocery shop with me, go to Sonic Happy Hour with me, and to work like crazy to support our tails! I am thankful we have this time together and that his work provides for our family and that it enables him to be home with us alot more during the holidays. What a blessing!

I will not glorify laundry because that is just wrong!
Yet, I am thankful I have a washer and dryer so I can keep sheets, towels and clothes clean for my boys and me. It is an endless chore, but one I am glad I can gripe about because it means I have an active crew who is constantly moving and shaking. And who is not thankful for sheet washing day...I mean come on?! Today is that day at my house and I am most thankful for that.
Abby

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

A Thanksgiving Addition


I'm preparing for our Thanksgiving meal. This year we will eat at our house, Stephen's parents will come and whoever else that I can convince to spend the day with our family. If there is one thing I'm thankful for its a good Thanksgiving dinner!

We have our tradition of Thanksgiving foods, but every once in a while I like to throw something new into the mix.

I found this apple pie on The Pioneer Woman's website and knew I had to have it. It is really, really good. Stephen liked it, which is saying a lot since he isn't a fan of my cooking in general.

You must try it. It calls for cream. I, of course, had just been to the store where I purchased apples, and pie crust (you didn't think I made my own did you? Of course not, you know me better than that!) for this very pie, but failed to purchase cream. No big surprise really. It happens all the time. So, I found a substitution for cream and added butter to milk. It worked and the pie tasted dreamy!

I didn't add pecans to the top, and I used margarine instead of butter which was a bit of a mistake, but once cooked tasted yummy. PW makes a hard cream (which I have never heard of) to go on top, but it contains whisky and I didn't find any whisky artificial flavoring at the store. And I don't see this preacher's wife heading to the liquor store to find any of the real stuff. I live in a dry county after all! God is good!

Our Thanksgiving meal will consist of: Turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, sweet potato casserole with marshmallows on top(although I do love a streusel topping), green bean bundles, pineapple souffle( it really is good), rolls, broccoli-cheese casserole, pumpkin pie, chocolate pie, pecan pie, and apple pie.

How about your Thanksgiving meal? What will you be serving, or eating?


Julie

Friday, November 12, 2010

Food Friday


I am thankful for a warm oven that can cook up smiles for friends and family.
I made 2 successful loaves of bread and a yummy batch of cinnamon rolls this past weekend. I got a sweet note in Henry's bag this week thanking me for the yummy cinnamon rolls I sent to school and I got a nice little call the other night from Randall's grandfather who had eaten all his cinnamon rolls and bread. He encouraged me to bring him more...and indeed I will! I love my sourdough bread starter!


I am thankful for honest friends and family... I reckon.
Ok, I am fixing to share something that will make you laugh, because my husband, sister and friend Brittni laugh at me and tell me "NO" when I ask them to go with me to eat at Ryan's. I love salad buffet and I crave it often. I try really hard to "woo" them to go with me but they never buy into my "woo". No one will eat at Ryan's with me, no matter how hard I beg. I love the "Land of And" commercials for Ryan's and it makes me want it "real bad" (Can't you hear that frumpy nail tech on Legally Blonde saying that about her hot dog). It is a great deal...$9.99 for an endless buffet. Come on! When I was a little girl my grandparents always took me to eat salad because I loved it, even then. I know if my Meemaw was not with Jesus, she would be with me at Ryan's.

I am thankful that my husband told me to not cook much this week!
This Heifer is taking a break! Outside of warming stuff up, mixing something quick and tending to my sourdough, I am not in the kitchen. I have not even been to the grocery store. Score! I love to cook, but sometimes a break from it is needed. The holiday cooking is approaching us and I stay real busy at that time. I love to fill our home with the smells of the season and I enjoy sharing goodies with those near and dear.

I am thankful for this little scene. My baby boy can feed himself and drink himself!
Wowsie! I am amazed and a little sad at how fast he is growing, yet so excited to see him learn independence. I love watching him bite a cracker from his hand. It makes me giggle for some reason. He is so precise and careful. I just love to watch.
Abby

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Kindle Gratitude

Yesterday I went to the doctor for my annual exam. Sorry guys. When the doctor asked if this was my yearly appointment, I 'fessed up and told him I hadn't been to the doctor in 6 years. He decided it was my decade appointment! I found a friend.

I went by myself. That is a rare occurrence. I remember taking David and Daniel with me when I would have check-ups when I was pregnant with Anna. Sometimes they really shouldn't have gone.

But this time I was alone. Just me and my Kindle. Have I told you recently how much I love my Kindle? So much! I love all gifts that are given to me (with the exception of a pair of purple corduroy overalls my mom bought me when I was in high school. I don't think either of us is sure why they were purchased) but my Kindle has to be my most favorite of all of my recent gifts.

My Kindle was a hit at the doctor's office. All the nurses, and the doctor wanted to look at it, know about it and hold it. It was like a baby they way it got everyone attention! While there I completed a book and began another one, checked my email and facebook. What a great invention!

My answer to the gratitude challenge today is material. It's my Kindle. I'm thankful for the product, the inventor, and the purchaser. You should probably go buy one too!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

As The Tree Spins

A few years back I walked into our Aunt Janet and Uncle Mike's house and saw spinning ornaments on their always beautiful Christmas tree. I was so impressed that Randall and I left their house and headed straight to Hobby Lobby on Christmas Eve and bought all the spinners they had left. I have had spinning ornaments since then and I heart them so very, very much.
I have had them for three years now. I hang my finer ornaments from them. Last year all of Henry's firsts hung from them. It was so special. The spinning ornaments always gather lots of attention from our holiday house guests. It is pretty unusual, I reckon.


This year I am having spinning dilemmas. I know there are bigger issues in this world like war, starving babies, drought, etc., but if you know me, you know my Christmas tree is just about as important...well, to me at least. This will be my first year to have fully decorated trees in both sitting rooms. I say this will all humility, of course. My mother-in-law gave me her artificial tree because she thought this house needed two trees. I am now not sure if that was a blessing or a curse! ha. Figuring out how to decorate the new tree is throwing me for a loop. I thought I had a pretty good plan until I put that tree up yesterday and decorated it.

Yikes...it has been a mess. I thought going a bit sassy and edgy would be fun. I am also not using any of the decor I use on my normal tree. I bought huge big mesh flowers this summer on a clearance rack and a big glitter bow. Well, it did not come together as well as it did that summer day on that clearance rack!
So, my sweet husband comes home last night and says "Why are there big flowers sticking out of that tree in there?"...not exactly the reaction I was going for. Then, my sweet, older sister texts me and asks why I am unhappy with the tree. I tell her about the bow. She then asks me if it is vinyl. I tell her "actually, yes, but it has glitter on it"...she says " That is a mailbox bow!" I am still laughing. So, today I worked with it a bit more and removed the bow. It is what it is.


So, back to the spinners. Ok, they are all on the tree that I put up yesterday. I have decided Henry will probably love a spinning ornament a bit too much, so putting them on the tree he will sit with the least, is best. It is hard to accept that reality, but I am trying to be realistic, despite the frown it gives me when thinking of no spinning ornaments on my old fashioned tree.
The saddest news is this...I went to purchase a few more spinners this year and they are junk! T-total disappointment. I plugged them in to the tree and you can literally hear the tree in the kitchen. A tree should be seen and not heard, don't you think?!
I went to two stores that sell them and they are all made just alike. The ones I bought a few years ago are much more solid looking and there is no sound. The price of making things cheap...I tell ya! Why can't they just leave things alone?!


Do you have spinning ornaments by chance....tell me we are not the only ones?! And if you have 2 trees, how do you keep them different in style without breaking the bank on new decor?


P.S. In case you are wondering why I am decorating so early. Two reasons, I like to enjoy the fruits of my labor as long as possible and I have two parties in my house the week after Thanksgiving. Randall is a good man...that is all I am saying!

I am thankful for the ability to decorate, the resources to do it, the husband who allows me to drive him batty about it and the encouragement I get from my friends and family.



Abby

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Gratitude for Church


Today I would like to tell you that I'm thankful for my church.

It sounds like a good preacher's wife thing to be thankful for doesn't it?! I can't help it!

We have been at this church for 4 years. The month after we came here, the Singing Christmas Tree was erected. I didn't think much of it. The announcements were made that the tree was going up but I really wasn't interested and didn't understand what the big deal was.

Well, I was wrong for my dis-interest. The tree is HUGE. HUGE!

We only have the tree every other year. And this is the year. It's our 3rd year to get to enjoy the putting up, singing in and taking down of the tree.

Yesterday was the day we put the tree up. And when I say we, I mean I was there watching "us" put the tree up. Because, I am a member of the church family, and members of the church family were putting it up. So.....we put the tree up yesterday. And man, is it a job! There were about 15 men working hard making sure that the tree was put up securely.

I went almost to the top of the tree last night. I made it to row 6 of 7 rows. They needed my help, and I decided to forego my fright of heights and help. God is good. I didn't fall, or even think of falling.

The church got together yesterday and built a tree of metal. They got together and fluffed greenery to be put on the tree, and they got together to prepare food for those that worked. The church was in action yesterday at FBC-Star City. It was fun to watch. It was great to be a part of.

I can't wait to see the singers in the tree. With the lights on, and the songs being sung it makes me so excited to celebrate Jesus' birth!
Julie

Monday, November 8, 2010

You've Got A Friend

I feel so blessed to have such great friends who love Jesus. Here I will highlight a few of them. I could never highlight them all though...not enough room!
God gave me this ole girl when I was 4 years old. I can't imagine one single day on this earth without her. We have literally been through it all. No exceptions, really. We are as close as we were growing up, even with all the miles between us. She gets me like no one else does, and for that I am supremely blessed....because frankly, I am one odd duck!


She was my first friend in Jonesboro. We had an instant bond because she and I have several personality similarities. She is that friend I cannot talk to for three weeks, but the one I can drop in on with wet hair and pajama pants on late at night without a second thought. She is also the only one outside of family to ever keep Henry. She was also the only non-relative at the hospital when he was born. I love having a friend like that.


This is my newest dear friend, and one of my most favorite people. She has a heart of pure gold. We have known each other since I moved here, but just recently we have become close. We meet up before the sun comes up several times a week to run and have great conversation, and we also sit together for our Bible Study Fellowship lecture each week. The mornings I spend with her make for great days. We have so much in common. I love when she tells people we are alot a like, because I take that as a huge compliment.

This is one of my best girls. We worked together in college. She makes me laugh outloud, amazes me with her endless talents and loves my family like her very own. I love that she is also that friend that I cannot see for a few months and we pick right up where we left off and always make great memories.

I love that Henry is buddies with all my friends little kiddos. These are the little ones of my friend who I have no photo with (sorry LaShay). I appreciate how the Lord puts people in our paths we would otherwise never know or find. What a blessing making friends with this sweet, sassy friend has been...and her little cuties.

The gal in the middle is a God send to me this year. She is the one who made Caramel apples with me in a previous Food Friday post...great fun, we have. She then introduced me to the pretty gal on the right. I love how real, honest and funny these girls are. It makes me laugh just thinking about them. I love to laugh.

Oil and perfume rejoice the heart; so does the sweetness of a friend's counsel that comes from the heart.
Abby

Friday, November 5, 2010

Food Friday

Well, here is the bread.

It was not the best bread but every time I make it, it gets better. I had left home for the day and thought I would get back in time to bake it accordingly, but that did not happen. We got home about 4 hours after the fact and we had a mound of dough sticking up from each pan. I punched it down and baked it....not smart. We had the thickest bread you have ever eaten. It was not hard, just thick and heavy. I threw it out and it weighed down the kitchen trash bag. We laughed. I have attempted cinnamon rolls and have a little ways to go before I master them. Anyway, it is a learning process and a lot of fun!

I am thankful for a warm oven, hands that can work with dough, a husband who supports my attempts to master way too many things, and the smell of fresh bread baking in my house.

I love Paula's holiday edition.
This is not the current one, but a photo of the first one I ever bought. I bought it in an airport in Phoenix the week before Thanksgiving. I used to travel with the job I had at that time. I got it and gave it to my Mama as a pre-holiday happy....after I read it on the plane, of course. I try to purchase one each year. I even attempted to make this cake on the front of this one for my Mama. I got pretty close to it. In fact, we took a photo of me with the cake and this magazine and my Mawmaw sent it to Paula. We got a nice email back but I was never published. Ha.
Anyway, I love the recipes and the ideas she has each year. If you purchase the one for this year, the pillows in the chairs on page 16 are the pillows on my couch! I had no idea we were "trendy"! Ha...I was actually unsure if the pillows on my couch were even cute, so I guess I will keep them since Paula has them! :)
I am thankful for fun memories with my family and the laughs that they provide for me, year after year.


And don't you just love the holiday creamer flavors?!
I went to my friend LaShay's for coffee yesterday and she had this pumpkin spice flavor. She said she saw it at the store and almost trampled a lady trying to get into the cooler to get it!

Do you love flavored coffee and if so what is your favorite?
I like Pumpkin and I am thankful my friend had some to share with me yesterday!

And what is Food Friday without a photo of the little foodie?!

I decided to not post a photo of him in his highchair again this week. You people are going to start thinking this is the only place he sits! We were playing outside waiting for Daddy to get home yesterday and I took this little picture. I thought this was cute. I love that he can now wear the plethora of overalls he has in his closet. They are too cute!

I am thankful for this little boy and the joy he brings me each day.

Abby

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Bulldogs and Gratitude




Schools all across our state are out of school today. And since the kids found out about it they decided we shouldn't be in school either. And since I want to give them a semblance of the public school feeling (crazy hair day, spirit day, and pj day) I went with it. So, no school at Beavers Academy today!

Since there is no school, some high school football games are being played tonight and the others are being played tomorrow night. Our beloved Bulldogs play tonight. In the cold, wet, wintry weather! I can hardly wait!!!

Some years ago our church began hosting the Bulldog Breakfast the morning of every football game. The players, coaches, and cheerleaders come to the church for breakfast, a devotional by a guest speaker and pep talk from the coach and awards from the previous week. It is a fun time, and a highlight for many of the players and cheerleaders.

Stephen and the boys get up and leave the house at 4:30 every Friday morning to cook, and help set-up for the breakfast. Anna and I sleep peacefully in our beds and wake up when they come home. I love Friday mornings!

This morning since there was no school, the breakfast didn't begin until 9:30. Anna and I decided we could make this one. So, we headed over to the church at about 8:30. The cooks were finishing up the pancakes, gravy, eggs, bacon and sausage. Oh and the biscuits! The players all came in wearing their Bulldog blue, the cheerleaders came in in their pajamas, it seems they were out late last night rollin' peoples yards. (Thankfully we were not on their list this year. Although the kids love it when we get rolled!)

One of our area pastors gave the devotional today. He said one word. Finish! If you start well then finish well. I've thought about that for the last couple of hours. I start a lot of things well, but I don't always finish them that way. I hope the kids were challenged by that today as well.

I am thankful for (or have gratitude for!) the ones that have come before me. The pastor that began the Bulldog Breakfasts, and the ones that saw his vision and helped him succeed in it. They began well, and although we aren't finished, we are finishing well!
Julie