Friday, January 30, 2015

lovin right now

There is seriously nothing like stealing a good hour alone, lighting a candle and a stick of incense, rolling out my yoga mat in the living room floor and popping in the Gentle Yoga dvd of my Travis Eliot Ultimate Yogi set.  I feel refreshed both mentally and physically and sometimes a little sore... in a good way.  It is a great way to begin my day or end my day. 

I adore all of my shirts purchased from the talented James of Skyline Fever (I like the unisex sided tees... they cover the toosh well), Danskin yoga capris from WalMart, incense of just about any variety, the Ultimate Yogi collection and of course an entire hour of just me finding my balance of thoughts, strength and composure.

Note: the link to the Ultimate Yogi is the only one currently on Amazon and is expensive.  I'd try ebay maybe if you are interested.  Or just hold out for a cheaper one.  It's worth it if you are up to it.

 I am also lovin this recipe for overnight breakfast oatmeal right now.  Oh my... do I ever!

So grateful for this day. Thank you, Universe, for providing me with this ordinary day.  ~~  Houston Foodlovers Book Club
Photo credit and blog:                      

Thursday, January 29, 2015

February DC Decor

I couldn't stop myself on Tuesday once I received the red string of lights from my sister, Mary Evelyn.  I had already made the two strands of felt heart garland to hang, that was so easy to make and seriously took about twenty minutes, and already had the doilies.  I made the cardboard and glitter hearts to hang that I used my new favorite mod podge and glitter "paint" when mixed together for excellent coverage.  I hung my drawing for the bulletin board that we used last year and hung some card stock cut out hearts from a couple of door frames that I have had a few years now.  I actually saved those from my last job before I opened my "stay on farm" job here.  I left my snowflake cut outs that I am in love with since it's is still winter. I also brought out a bunch of vinyl clings that my Mom gave me.  Now all I lack is taking down January and putting up February.  That will happen later in the afternoon today.  I really enjoy decorating for the seasons and months and keeping things colorful and happy here at the day care.  I always have tons of things hanging from the ceiling and completely make use of this space.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

On The Menu

On The Menu: Comfort food.  Sometimes there's just nothing better.  A warm bowl of soup or chili to warm you from the inside out is all you need after coming in from the cold.  These two recipes are for sure on our menu for the next couple of weeks.  Shaun's not a bug soup person so I have to spread the time between recipes.  The black bean soup, I have already thought, would be perfect for lunch with maybe a green salad or quesadillas. Yum!
As always, click on the picture or the title of the recipe to be directed right to the source.

Photo and Recipe Credit:                       

Easy Black Bean Soup via A Beautiful Mess
Photo and Recipe Credit:                                  

Photo and Recipe Credit:    

Photo and Recipe Credit: me!    

Monday, January 26, 2015

Weekend Shots

Just a few from a warm Sunday afternoon.  

A cat nap interrupted.

A sunny window or two.

And yummy Honey Yeast Rolls from this post and a Sunday evening game of Zonk.

My favorite thing that Shaun said to me... when I was asking about Uncle Randy's girlfriend Joanna was this... "she was like you... He could be Randy and that's who she loved."  

Friday, January 23, 2015

Image Inspiration

Image Inspiration is a series and collection of good stuff I've found and have tried or want to try.  Also, most of the items are pictures I have printed and cut out for my journal for future use.  This series will also help me remember where I saw certain creations and interiors.  It's just a whole lot of good stuff and I am really enjoying sharing what I find with you!

DIY Cereal Box Gift Tags - Offbeat & Inspired
Photo and creative credit: Tiffany at

Ok, this totally sounds like something I would have eventually come up with!  I am all about finding alternative uses for cereal boxes and you know I am seriously into mod podge!  Although I am totally jealous of her tag paper punch I had already thought of using a ruler and cutting them out before I saw it.  This is so precious and easy to do and handy to have the gift tags on hand!

Photo and creation credit: thewishfultinker                              

The more I look at this the more brilliant I think it is.  It is the perfect, compact, little organizer for a desk that is easy and cheap to make... seriously!  I can see where I would over stuff this thing.  But it would be super neat for thank you cards or birthday cards or even a notepad by the phone or maybe the chair that you sit in the most cause I feel house phones are a thing of the past for some!  So cute!

Apple Pear & Brandy Cider | Eva Kosmas Flores
Photo and Inspiration credit: Eva from                               

Now here's a bird of a different color... literally.  I was drawn to this blog by a recipe, because of course, it is a food blog.  While the Autumn Brittle recipe is what brought me there, as I hit the home option, the pictures are what kept me there.  Honestly, as a blogger and picture taker I get discouraged by my indoor photography.  I see all of these perfect food and preparation pictures and it leads me to not want to take pictures sometimes because mine do not look like theirs and I cannot grasp how they make it look so good.  I don't have good lighting, my hands aren't steady enough... and there I go breaking a new year goal of not comparing myself to other bloggers!  Inspiration at hand.... these pictures (while they are still much nicer than my own) aren't so light.  They have just enough light and somehow beautifully dark at the same time while you can still focus on each item.  They remind me of something vintage and UK-ish.  I love them all.  It also gives me a different point of view that doesn't need a light box or bright sunshine streaming through the window.  Thank you Eva!!

Happy Birthday Mary Evelyn!!!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Bulbous Begonias

I love to garden.  I absolutely love to start plants from seed and watch them grow.  I love to plant seeds mid season in pots on my porch just to see if they will come up and a lot of times they do … and bloom!  I adore planting bulbs in the fall and waiting all winter for them to pop their heads up, and with this spring like weather we have had this past week we may just begin to see it too soon!  I like to save seeds from garden vegetables and flowers and use them year after year.  I love teaching the kids at my day care how to garden and dig in the dirt and harvest our veggies.  Heck… right now we’ve got wheat grass growing inside and are trying to sprout an avocado in our kitchen window.  I simply cannot resist the urge to grow and nurture something. 

I have known about this addiction for quite some time.  I know that when I pass the reduced and sad looking plants at the garden center, that are begging for a drink and someone to care for them, that I am likely to be the poor sap that goes back to get at least one.  That’s how I wind up with African violets most of the time.  Every time I go to WalMart during the spring and summer I usually come home with “just one more.”  I even have a special fund called my “flower and garden” money.  I never touch it unless it involves… well… gardening and flowers.  Well guess what, it’s January and I touched it this morning. 

A year or two ago I checked out Mary Jane Butters’ book at the library, Mary Jane’s Outpost.  I loved it so much I wound up buying it after they wouldn't let me keep it after six weeks.  There was one tip in the book, among many, that spoke of bulbous begonias.   Now, I've bought begonias before but never had any from bulbs that can be used year after year.  I grow Caladiums this way.  At first, I bought the bulbs reduced at the garden center and even though it was late in the season I tried them out in pots on the porch steps.  They grew fantastic!  At the end of the season, when the leaves died back, I snipped the leaves and scooped the bulbs out of the pots.  I let them air out a day or two then put them in a paper bag, folded and tucked it in the basement for the winter.  Now all I do is get the bag back out and pop the bulbs in some dirt in pots.  The begonias will work in the very same way. 

I have searched for bulbous begonias and either I can’t find them or when I do they are pretty high priced.  Mostly I just can’t find them.  Especially not around local.  Until this morning!  As you know I am a QVC watcher.  They are always just so happy and friendly.  Beats the local news… how depressing!  I came into the day care early and switched on the t.v. and was gladly surprised to see their January garden show was on and low and behold guess what they were selling… begonias!  From bulbs!!  I was so tickled!  I thought of my flower fund and thought of the begonias…. thought of my flower fund and thought of the begonias.  I logged on to my computer and ordered them.  I am so excited and can’t wait to plant them!  They should arrive towards the end of April and you’d better bet there will be pictures of them this summer to share with you... and the next summer and the next summer and the next!!!

Here's the link to the jumbo combo box that I bought.  And if they don't sell out soon I'll probably end up with another one! 

Roberta's 8-piece Jumbo Begonia Collection w/Fertilizer

Roberta's 8-piece Jumbo Begonia Collection w/Fertilizer
All photos from                                  

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

On The Menu

On The Menu is a series that shows what's On The Menu at our house from blog posts and cookbooks that I have come across.  I am really enjoying sharing the wonderful recipes that I have found with you and hope that you enjoy them too!

Barely Blanched Broccoli Salad Recipe.
Photo and recipe from:                

I am a broccoli lover.  I eat steamed broccoli and brown rice for lunch several days a week.  I swear by broccoli being the culprit of my finger nails growing so good.  This recipe sounds easy and divine and will be a perfect addition to grilled chicken or fried fish.  Yum!  Truthfully... I've never bought feta cheese ( I know... nerd).  But it's true.  I hope it comes in a small quantity from the store as this recipe doesn't take very much.  Maybe we could put it on regular salads too.

Black Bean, Rice, and Cilantro Salad
Recipe for Black Bean, Rice, and Cilantro Salad
Photo and Recipe from:

Being a rice lover, a black bean lover and pretty much any vegetable that will go with... lover, this salad looks right up my alley.  I found it listed on the blog under 90 no-cook lunches.  This recipe makes 8-10 servings so I can see myself making it for supper for Shaun and I both then taking the rest for lunch at the day care.  Maybe even wrapping some up in a tortilla with cheese if I'm feeling sassy.  

Monday, January 19, 2015

Around Here

This post could partially fall into the Around Here category because it involves what has been happening around here but also Image Inspiration because my decision and confidence came from pictures found on the internet.  So, here's the scoop.

When we built our home five years ago we chose not to install blinds on our windows.  We have no neighbors and if anybody is out there peeping in chances are we heard them get here or the dog soon will alert us.  I quite enjoy the openness.  But... sometimes I find myself wanting to shut out the light and take a nap and sometimes I get a little edgy when the mood is right that there are open windows right there knowing there are lights on in here and none out there which means at night you can clearly see in here.  You get the picture.  So I finally decided to put some curtains up in our bedroom.  I didn't want to go drilling holes in the wall for something big and fancy... that's just not me.  But I wanted something more than sheers.  After finding a lovely picture on the internet of patchwork curtains made from vintage hankies I knew what my project would consist of.

Last summer, my sister Mary Evelyn and I ventured to an estate sale in which I came home with many items.  Such items included an old charcoal grill in which we proceeded that evening to have what I called an "Old Fashioned Charcoal Grill Out Party" with my sister and her husband, and a big box of vintage fabric.  I do own several old handkerchiefs but not near enough for what I needed.  When I started pulling the old fabrics out and ironing them I got pretty excited.  When I began sewing them together I got even more excited and as of today I have one more to finish and our lovely curtains are done.  Oh, and I chose tension rods to hang them by.  I like the price of the rods (at $2.47 each and WalMart) and I like that if I get tired of the curtains I can easily take them down.  And I like that I didn't drill holes in the walls and buy big rods and hangers and all that.   I did use one hankie per curtain and I wound up cutting out seventy something, thirteen inch squares.  On the up side I have plenty of practice when I go to making my quilt this year.  I just miht need to hit up another estate sale for more vintage fabric!

Here's the picture of the inspiration curtain.

scarf curtain, would be a cute thing to do for the kitchen window to add color and pretty scarves!

Mine is not sewn near as perfect looking as these... but I am not a perfect girl and care nothing about perfection.  Here they are.

I do like the fact that light can still come through.  The hankies were a bit tough because they were different sizes that the pieces that I cut.  I hemmed the sides and bottom of each curtain and simply made an inch and a half loop and sewed it also at the top for the rod to go through.  

P.S. Sorry about Juanita's appearance.  I had just turned her and watered her so she wasn't much into smiling.  

Friday, January 16, 2015


1. Collected by Fritz Karch.  I have actually already checked out this book but I will tell you that I really enjoyed thumbing through the pages of items collected and ogling at all the stuff.  I did learn a few things too.  For instance, I have some vintage linens that have the name Vera in the bottom corner and I learned that it is Vera Neumann and some other interesting things.  

2.  Modern Pioneering by Georgia Pellegrini.  I already rented this one too.  I will admit that at first glance through the pages I wasn't too impressed and set it back down for a few days.  When I did pick it back up and really looked at it I felt differently.  She has some good tips on cooking and gardening and some pretty good looking recipes.  I really like the small tips in the corners and plan to write several of them in my journal for later.

3.  Captain Phillips dvd.  My sister Mary Evelyn actually recommended this movie telling me that she and her husband were on the edges of their seats through the whole movie!  

4.  Leonardo the Terrible Monster by Mo Willems.  I am currently hooked on Mo Willems children's books.  The kids loved this book and I love any book that makes them laugh.  And laugh they did at this one.  It says at one point that the monster wants to scare the tuna salad out of someone.  They thought this was the funniest thing they had ever heard.  I have more Mo Willems books on the way.

5. The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo.  I am on the wait list for this one and it is only available on over drive from my library.  Meaning it is a downloadable version that will have to be returned too.  I normally don't like renting books this way because downloading it eats up our internet time.  So I am thinking about buying the actual book.  Anything that can make cleaning up feel like magic sounds good to me.  I am looking forward to a different approach at being a tidy person and it making total sense.  Things like that generally stick with me.  

P.S. I do take suggestions on reading and movies. If you have seen or read anything good lately please let me know!

Thursday, January 15, 2015

A Recipe

This recipe is from my own stash.  I made it up from my fondness of deer meat and my double fondness of the luscious aroma of wine floating in the house when I'm cooking.  Even the next day it is wonderful.  I was craving this dish on Monday so I decided to make it Tuesday night.  Thinking I had all of the ingredients, forgetting about the mushrooms and onions totally, and at a complete loss of directions as I could not find the recipe I had written anywhere.  Nor was I convinced that I had ever written it down.  I logged on and looked all through my blog just knowing I had posted it sometime.  Finding nothing here, I looked back through my dove hunt magazines with no luck.  I though about a blog that I had begun for my father-in-law's farm, that didn't last... the blog not the farm, but couldn't remember any log in information.  I decided to wing it and was not as pleased with the results as I would have liked.  My craving was some what satisfied I guess.  The deer meat was gone anyway when we were done.  So today I researched into the blog from 2010 once more with better luck.  I found my recipe and am now sharing it with you.  I am also printing it out for my cookbook and will most certainly have record of it here now.  Yay!

I hope you enjoy it as much as we do.  It is one of my specialties that Shaun says is "cruise boat worthy."I think it makes the house smell like you just walked in to the Melting Pot.  And now that I have found it Look Out!  It will probably be on the menu for next week too!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

On The Menu

On The Menu is a series in which I share recipes that will grace our table and pallets from all over.  Here's what I have found this week!

Photo and recipe credit: Maeghan from thewaytohisheartblog                     

I just happen to have a father who just happens to love the old fashioned orange slices who also happens to have a birthday coming up.  This is for sure something I want to try and make for him for his birthday.  I can't wait to try them myself!

Photo and recipe credit: Maeghan from thewaytohisheartblog                    
Sometimes it pays off to browse through a new blog and oh my goodness don't these rolls look divine?!  The look like the rolls they used to serve at the mess hall at Beersheba Springs Hotel on Monteagle Mountain.  If they taste at all like them I will be in shear heaven!  I feel these will be the perfect accompaniment to any comfort food like roast or fried chicken.