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Thursday, November 28, 2013

To Grammy's House We Go......


 On Tuesday morning,we awoke to freezing rain and a 3 hour delay at the kids school.
We had been planning to pick the kids up around 12:30 to get out of town, so at that point - we made the decision to skip the hour and a half they would have been in school and try to get out of town earlier.
Which we did.
But only by about 20 minutes, because our morning was full of set backs and it became a trend that lasted the entire day through.

First,  Brady brought our cat inside, took him in the bathroom, locked the door, walked out of the bathroom and shut the locked door. With the cat inside.  
Thankfully, hubby came to the rescue!


Crisis averted so I went for a run (on the treadmill because I'm a weather wimp), showered, finished packing and we loaded everything and everyone in the van. 
And......it wouldn't start. 
 Ken tried to jump it off to no avail.
Thankfully, a sweet gentleman from church came to our rescue.
Tested our battery and said it was good, so we were able to try the jumper cables once more and it worked. 

So, we headed out on our way admiring the ice on the trees and praying (well, I was anyways) that there was none on the roads.  
Funny thing was the further west we went it was warmer (even though the elevation was higher) and the rain was just that -- a cold rain which still made traveling slower.
It's a 6 hour drive to Grammy's house and we travel through two river gorges to get here.

About half way through our trip, in the latter part of the first river gorge - the Nantahala River Gorge, we came to a dead standstill.


There is NO way around a standstill in a river gorge.
No roads to go around it.
SO, we passed the time as best we could
With snacks..... 


moving around a little bit

watching movies and posing for pictures (if you are Maggie).

OH, and playing games on our phones, because we were in an area with no cell service so I couldn't check any social media or text my bff to complain. =)


After an hour of sitting, we were finally on our way. 
We made it to Chattanooga just in time for another huge traffic jam due to another wreck.
Instead of sitting for another hour in traffic we met my dad(PaPa) for supper.
Sticky Fingers it was!
We had yummy ribs for supper and waited out the traffic.

We finally made it to Grammy's at about 9PM where we were warmly greeted my Grammy, Granddaddy, Uncle Heath, Austin and Brent (my cousins).
We visited for a while before falling into warm beds thankful to have arrived.

Yesterday, we got up and breakfast. Grammy made biscuits and gravy with sausage. YUM.
Then I headed to Chattanooga to meet my friends for lunch.
I got to have lunch with two of my favorite people in the world - Kellie and Hannah Bracken.
Unfortunately, I was too busy catching up with them to take any pictures.

Because the weather was frigid on the mountain (30 degree high yesterday), we spend the afternoon at Grammy's just hanging out and staying warm.
Grammy and Granddaddy had an event to go to and after they left, we headed out to meet PaPa and Uncle Heath for supper at the local Mexican restaurant.
It was a nice and relaxing day.
I was able to sit and read a book for long stretches of time. Lovely.

After supper, we came back to Grammy's for a game of chicken foot. 
This is something that the kid always do with Grammy and Granddaddy.
They enjoy it so much.
And because I had had a chill all day, I took a nice warm bath and read some more of my book.
   It was lovely!!

Today, on this Thanksgiving Day, we are getting ready to go to MY Granny and Pa's for lunch and later to PaPa and NaNa's for supper (my dad ).  
I'm so thankful for this day.
My grandparent's are 89 and 91 and I know that family times like these -- with all of my aunts, uncles and cousins -- aren't going to last much longer.
My kids are so blessed to have 3 great grandparents still living and to get to spend quality time with them and all of their grandparents.
Happy Thanksgiving everyone.
Enjoy your family today.

That is what I plan to do!!

Friday, November 22, 2013

My Instagram Life 11.21.13


These are the moments that I took the time to grab a snapshot of this week.
I love doing these weekly instagram posts.  
My snapshots are saved for every more. =)

SO, this little boy got his soccer trophy on Saturday.
He was excited!

On Sunday morning, they chose to coordinate their clothes.
I used to force coordinating clothes on them. Now, I only require coordination on rare occasion, so it was nice that they wanted to do something together for once.

Sunday night was our Final Flocking with the youth.
We've had such a good time doing this the past 7 weeks.  

And yes, *I* was the one who got flocked.

These two borrowed my phone and left me with some great pictures.....=)

Life has finally settled down just a bit and I was actually able to cook 4 nights this week.
One of those meals was Crockpot Jambalaya.
It was so good!

Since life has gotten a bit more manageable (read: we have a break from soccer and cheer), the kids have more time for playing and using their imaginations.
Hubby and I were summoned to Brady's bedroom yesterday evening to "see what they had made us."
I was so impressed when I found this.
They had made a picture for us on the vintage Litebrite.  
SO sweet!

I had hoped to get this post done earlier, but I was too busy.
I worked for a bit this morning, and then got my nails done.
This color was called Fizzy Apple.
I love it.

And then, hubby worked it out to get all the kids from school so I could go see "Catching Fire" this afternoon.
I went to the movies all by myself for the first time ever.  The movie was awesome!!

Then, since the kids were at a play date, we even got to have supper out just the two of us.

It's been a great Friday!!!
It's been a great week.
So glad that things have settled down ......even if just for a bit. 

Linking up at Life Rearranged.

life rearranged

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Tasty Thursday: Crockpot Jambalaya

DO you like Cajun food?  

Wait, who doesn't?!?

Well then, I've got a recipe for you!?!

I found this recipe at over at Plain Chicken a while ago.
Go there for a printable version after you read on and your mouth starts watering!!
And just wait til you see how easy this is!!

Cut up some turkey sausage....

and some boneless, skinless chicken breast.
About a pound of each.
And put it in your crock pot.

Next add a cup of chicken broth and 28 ozs (or 2 14.5 oz - which is what I had) cans of diced tomatoes.

Add all these spices.....
Measurements are listed below, but I rarely measure.....


When I added the minced onion, I realized that I didn't have enough.
SO, I just added fresh along with some minced garlic.


Stir it all up.
Cover it and let it cook on low for 8 hours.


When I got home this afternoon, I made some brown rice to serve with the jambalaya.
Seriously, you cannot get easier than that.
Actually, I think the original recipe calls for instant rice, so that might be a little easier.....

DELISH!
You should try it!!

Here's the recipe:  (Or you can use the link above for a printable version)

1 pound skinless, boneless chicken breast halves - cut into 1 inch cubes
1 pound smoked turkey sausage, sliced 
1 (28 ounce) can diced tomatoes with juice
3 Tbsp dried minced onion flakes
1 cup chicken broth
2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 teaspoons dried parsley
2 tsp minced garlic
2 teaspoons Cajun seasoning
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
white rice or instant rice  { I used brown rice to make it a  bit healthier}

In a slow cooker, mix the chicken, sausage, tomatoes with juice, onion, garlic, celery, and broth. Season with oregano, parsley, Cajun seasoning, cayenne pepper, and thyme. 

Cover, and cook 7 to 8 hours on Low, or 3 to 4 hours on High. Mix in cooked rice cook for about 15 minutes to warm through. {I just cooked the rice and served the jambalaya mixture over the top}


*Mine turned out runnier than the pictures on the Plain Chicken Blog......
wonder if that is from not adding the rice into the crock pot.....?  Hmmmmm......

*Also, the first time I made this I used actual andouille sausage instead of the smoked turkey sausage.
I thought the extra spice was fantastic, but my family thought it was too spicy.

They loved it tonight.  
I promise you will love this easy version of Jambalaya!!
Give it a try and let me know when you do!


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Flocked


For the past 7 weeks, our youth at church have been doing a fundraiser called The Flamingo Flu.

We started out way back in September, selling immunizations to folks to keep them from getting the 'flu'.

While selling immunizations, we were also taking orders to "flock a friend" or to "flock a (local) business".

Once we had a lot of orders, in we began 6 weeks of flocking. And even had some orders for the flu to be given in retaliation.

We had a great time sneaking around each Sunday night for the last 6 weeks.

And then on November 6, we had an 'auction' for one final flocking.
To put all the flamingo's in one yard.

 The winner decided to split the flamingo's between two yards....

and even some tree's. 
We've gotten creative with our flocking stylings.

And, just like that......

The flocker became the flock'ee' and gained
150 pretty pink birds in our yard. 

This has been a great fundraiser.
I can't wait to do it again next year!!
The flu return......





Monday, November 18, 2013

The Smokey Eye



I love makeup.
I love to go to makeup stores, like Ulta and Sephora and just wander around and see all that there is to see.

And I've wanted for a long time to be able to do a great smokey eye.

Like this one......
http://media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/originals/09/1f/a0/091fa0b911eb76be6f19705326c44b2b.jpg


And this one.
It's just a little bit fancier for a special night out on the town....
http://trends-style.com/shimmery-smokey-eye/


But, I don't even try.

First, because I'm not sure I can pull it off.

And second, because I fear that if I did try it, it might end up a little like one of my favorite commercials these days:





Friday, November 15, 2013

My Instagram Life 11.15.13


It's been another busy week around here.  
I did take a LOT of pictures while we were out and about this week!!
Here's what we have been up to.......

On Sunday, after church,  we took the youth to work at a local mission that sells clothing and other items.
They had a great time working and we got a lot accomplished, too.
So proud of our SWAG Youth for working so hard!!

And on Sunday night, we made out last trip out flocking for the season.
We had a fantastic time, though we got caught at almost every house.

And though we didn't get caught at this house, retaliation has been promised.
I think our Flamingo Flu has started all sorts of flu's around here.....
That is my van, all covered in tp. =)

Monday was a teacher work day.
It was also a pretty chilly morning.
It was absolutely lovely to sit in the den with my coffee and the fire going
Love mornings that begin slowly like this......



Soon enough, it was time for us to go pick up Maggie who has spent the weekend with my sister.
We had a so much fun having lunch with my sister and my nephews.
My kids love their baby cousins.


On Monday evening, we went out to do our shoebox shopping.
Every year, our kids ask to do a shoe box  for Operation Christmas Child.
We tell them of course they can, but they will need to spend their own money to fill the boxes.  
All four of them wanted to do one for themselves.
So, we made a night of it.
Pizza at one of our favorite restaurants and then on to do our shopping.
They had a great time picking out things to go in the boxes.
And, I had a great time listening to their conversations about the boxes.
We will take our boxes to church on Sunday and add them to all the other's that have been filled and they will all be consecrated and prayed over before being sent on their way.

On Tuesday afternoon, Hubby surprised this little boy with a trip to the Bass Pro Shop.
Last year, he went at christmas time and saw the fish and all that the place had going for Christmas and he as asked about going back for a whole year.
He was super excited.
Though, he really didn't want me taking this picture....

While they were off doing that, I went to my favorite grocery store.
The Fresh Market.
I love going grocery shopping here.
Not only for the awesome Buy One,  Get One deals on Tuesdays,
 but it's just so pretty!!!

After I had my groceries, I headed to the school to pick up my girls.
They were all so excited when they got in the car.
It was report card day.
All three of them got straight A's!!
and Allie and Maggie had gotten their EOG scores back from last year and they did fantastic.
A '3' in Math and  a '3' Reading for Maggie.
A '3' in Math, a '3' in Science and a '4' in Reading for Allie.
All of those wonderful scores deserved a celebration.
So, we were off to Salsarita's (one of their favorite places) for supper!!

Yesterday afternoon, this sweet boy asked me to come outside, so he could show me how he could swing.
I'm so proud that he can swing by himself now. 
He's so grown up. {sniff, sniff}


When I'm out with just him, I learn all kinds of things.
Yesterday, he told me that when he grows up, he's going to be a veterinarian.
And a dad.  Of 3 kids -- 2 boys and a girl.
When he told me that, I reminded him that he would need to get married to have kids.  
He then asked where he could find a girl to marry. 
"What kind of girl should I marry?", he asked.
"One who loves Jesus.", I said.
We then went on to talk about a lot of other things but some how circled back around to the marrying thing.
I asked, "And, what kind of girl are you going to marry? " Hoping to hear him repeat my statement about a girl who loves Jesus.
He said, "A pretty one.".


After school today, I had a parent teacher conference.
We ran into some friends in the parking lot.
The Mom's talked a bit and the kids were playing.
As we were leaving, I got this picture of these silly girls.
Oh, but wait.
We were photo bombed.
By the assistant principal......do you see him in the window? =)

That is what we've been up to this week.
Tomorrow and Sunday will be more busy days......
I can't wait to read all about what you've been doing.

Linking up at Life Rearranged.

life rearranged