Wednesday, September 30, 2009

I Won, I Won!

As you know, I love reading blogs. One of my favorite things about reading blogs is all of the giveaways! I comment all the time to qualify for prizes, but I've never managed to be "randomly selected"... until now! I won a copy of The Listeners from a blog called 5minutesforbooks. They give away books all the time, often reserving one or two prizes from each giveaway specifically for educators/librarians. I was one of these winners. I cannot wait to introduce this book to my kids and include it in my classroom library. You can click here to see the post where the winners are announced.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A Work in Progress...

I love to cross stitch! But the problem is, I never know what to do with my creations after I am finished. And I don't want to spend money on things that just sit in our junk room after they're finished. So imagine my excitement when a lady at school asked me if I would like to finish one of her projects. She apparently started it years ago and would like it finished, but doesn't want to do it herself. Enter, me!

This is what the project looks like now...

And this is what it is supposed to look like when it's finished...

Maybe if I post it here I will actually make myself finish it and won't put it off. I do love to do it, I I am just honestly crunched for time. Hopefully I will make myself relax and work on it and maybe, just maybe, it will be finished by Christmas!!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Meal Plan Monday

  1. Chili - I heart this fall weather!!
  2. Chicken Noodle Soup - my mom gave me this soup mix I really want to try.
  3. Three Cheese Baked Mostaccioli - a new recipe for me! We'll see how it goes. I found it at, a site started by the Pioneer Woman, one of my favorite blogs to read!
  4. Shepherd's Pie - also a new one for me! I don't think I will make it quite like the one linked here. Once again, we'll see!
  5. Grilled Chicken (cooked in Italian Dressing) Possible sides - salad, mashed potatoes, (because I will probably have left overs from the Shepherd's Pie!) green beans...

Monday, September 21, 2009

Meal Plan Monday

1.) Chicken Tetrazzini (recipe to come later)

2.) Cheeseburgers

3.) Breakfast for Dinner

4.) Leftovers

5.) We'll see... Maybe something new. I didn't try a new recipe last week like I wanted to...

Sunday, September 20, 2009

We're Just Like You, Only Prettier Confessions of a Tarnished Southern Belle

We're Just Like You, Only Prettier:

Confessions of a Tarnished Southern Belle

Absolutely hillarious! This book is not at all plot-driven - each chapter talks about something different. I like to read books like this when I am in between books, don't feel like thinking very much, or want a bit of light reading. From start to finish, it took me over a year to read. But each time I picked it up, it left me in stitches. And no wonder with chapters titled: Stop Watching Your Plasma TV and Start Selling Plasma - How to Become Honest-to-Jesus White Trash and Stamp out Gossip? - My Best Friend's Mama's Sister's Hairdresser Won't Like This a Bit. If you grew up in the South, most of the chapters will seem very familiar to you. Rivenbark also has a few other books out I may read off and on over the next year. But I can't decide between Belle Weather: Mostly Sunny with a Chance of Scattered Hissy Fits or Bless Your Heart, Tramp. You can check out her website here.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Baby Allie and Roxie

I found this video on my Dad's memory card this summer and love, love, love it! Just wanted to share it for the fun of it. This was filmed before we got married, so Allie is between 3 and 4 months old. Roxie is my Dad's German Shephard and is a member of the K9 Unit of the Bluegrass Search and Rescue Unit. She is the sweetest thing!

Friday, September 18, 2009

My "Baby" Brother

Today, my baby brother is turning 15. I can't believe it! And as bad as this year is, I don't even want to think about next year's birthday! Every time I see him he is taller and thinner and his voice is deeper!

Happy Birthday, Mark! I love you!

Back in the day!

Me with both of my brothers last summer. He looks so much older just from a year ago! But, it's the most recent picture I have.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Puppy Paddle!!

Last Saturday, the waterpark here in Bowling Green had a fundraiser for the Humane Society. We took Bo and Allie and joined my friend, Brittany with her Boxer, Bella. Paula (Jeff's mom) met us there too and helped keep up with Bo, who hates the water. (Notice how he isn't in any of the pictures!)

Check out all the dogs! You can see Allie trying to beat another dog to a tennis ball. For the most part, she played nice. The only dog she completely ignored was Radar the Weather Dog from WNKY. Radar kept trying to play with her, but she was having none of him!

Brittany and Bella!

So Cute!!

This pic cracks me up! She has a tennis ball in her mouth and you can see her fur going two different directions from shaking herself off.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Wedding Gifts...

Our most recent purchase...

Why am I blogging about new tv trays??

Two Reasons:

#1 We've wanted them for a while now and I really enjoy them.

#2 I purchased these puppies with the last of our Target gift cards from the wedding. According to my site, we have been married for 458 days now. I think we've done pretty well to have held on to that $$ for so long! We've used our wedding gift cards from different stores for things like a silverware box, groceries, bakeware, home organizers, shelves, gifts for others, etc. We are so thankful to our friends and family who blessed us with almost $1,000 in gift cards! We still have a few cards left to Kohl's and Bed, Bath and Beyond! I'm thinking maybe a bread maker or maybe some home decor???

Monday, September 14, 2009

Honey-Teriyaki Pineapple Pork Chops

: ) For Sabrina...

I actually got this recipe out of a Biggest Loser Family Cookbook, but I found it on this site for anyone else who wants it. Of course, I have kind of changed it and made it my own. Especially the cooking time. It takes much longer in my oven than what the recipe calls for. I just kind of flip it so it cooks evenly and take it out when I know it's done. And I definitely don't own a sprayer, i just lightly brush with olive oil.

Here's the recipe:

Makes 4 servingsOlive oil in a sprayer (not store-bought spray that contains propellant) 4 (4-ounce) trimmed boneless pork loin chops (3 1/2-4 1/2-ounce chops are OK), about 3/4" thick1 teaspoon garlic powderSalt, to tasteGround black pepper, to taste8 teaspoons honey teriyaki marinade and sauce (such as Ken's Steak House Marinade and Sauce)4 slices canned pineapple slices in juice, drained

Preheat the broiler.

Line a small baking sheet with aluminum foil and lightly spray the foil with olive oil.

Lightly mist both sides of the chops with olive oil and season with the garlic powder, salt, and pepper. Place the chops, not touching, on the prepared baking sheet and broil about 3" from the heat for about 2 minutes (be sure to leave the oven door open a crack when broiling).

Turn the chops and brush or spread 2 teaspoons of the teriyaki marinade evenly over the top of each. Top with pineapple slices.

Broil for 3 to 5 minutes longer, or until the pineapple and glaze brown lightly and the pork is barely pink inside. Serve immediately.

Nutrition at a GlancePer serving: 199 calories, 26 g protein, 13 g carbohydrates, 5 g fat (1 g saturated), 75 mg cholesterol, trace fiber, 234 mg sodium

Meal Plan Monday!!

In an effort to better organize my life, I am trying to plan out my meals further ahead of time. I used to be much better about it, but have slacked off A LOT lately. If I plan in advance, I can make less grocery trips and save $$. I am not so organized that I know what we're having on what night, but I think that's okay. Sometimes I get home and am just not in the mood for what I had originally plan. So, here are some of our choices this week:

1.) "angel" pizza - what jeff calls my semi-homemade pizza (sausage and pineapple)

2.) grilled chicken in italian dressing and a vegetable side

3.) honey-teriyaki pineapple pork chops and a vegetable side

4.) pizza-mac casserole

5.) salsa chicken & rice

6.) some new dish - my goal is to find a good recipe I want to try this week, hopefully a good one : )

Possible vegetable sides: corn, green beans, potatoes (baked, mashed, or twice-baked)

Have a good week!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Wicked - The Book and the Musical

So even though I am not one of those kids who really, really likes musicals (you know, the ones who know all the words to every current popular musical), I do enjoy a good show. I have seen a few in New York that are just plain awesome and I enjoy movie musicals like Chicago and Phantom. So when Jeff's parents asked if we would like to go see Wicked in Nashville, I was really excited (Jeff - not so much). To prepare for the show, I decided to read the book the musical is based on.

This book was really interesting. The author, Gregory Maguire, reveals the true story of the Wicked Witch of the West and shows that as usual, things are not always what they seem. Maguire gives the "witch" a past and a name, Elphaba. The reader also gets the back story of Glinda the Good Witch, a one-time friend of Elphaba's. Some parts were a little vulgar for me and, I thought, unnecessary. However, they were not so bad that I was not able to look passed them. In fact, the book left me wanting to read the second book in the series, Son of a Witch, which, you guessed it, tells the story of Liir, the son of the "Wicked Witch." He also has a third installment which tells the story of the Cowardly Lion. But first, I may take a break from Oz and read Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister.

After finishing the book, I looked online to read a little more about the muscial and discovered that the two were very, very different. I did not want to be disappointed in the show, so I decided I had to go in with no expectations and promised myself that I would not spend the whole time comparing the show to the book. And I have to say, I was not at all disappointed. I enjoyed the musical just as much if not more than I enjoyed reading the book. The muscial was much more funny, happy, and upbeat - three things that the book is not. If the musical had been done like the book, it would probably come across as long, boring, and depressing. The writers of the musical did an awesome job. The actors were also amazing and the two leads had AMAZING voices. I would definitely recommend that anyone who had the chance to see the show definitely take it!

The whole night was awesome. We went to Nashville early and ate at an Italian place called Maggiano's. The food was served family style and tasted great! It was so rich, I could hardly eat more than a few bites of one thing! So thank you Mel and Paula for a great night out! And also, thanks to my husband, Jeff, who is not a musical fan and who missed the first night of college football season without too much complaining. Thank the Lord for DVR!