Saturday, February 18, 2017

Much More Than a Balloon or a Card

February is a "BIG" month in our household.
We celebrate the day we were introduced (2/10).
We celebrate my favorite holiday (2/14) - Valentine's Day.
We celebrate our first date (2/17) - Donut Day.

While I love the celebration,
the decorations,
the helium balloons that hubby my bring home to enjoy all month,
the special donut treat on the anniversary of our first date ... is so much more.

The love is more than a gift or a card.
It is the thoughtfulness that wants to remember these days even when it may seem silly.
It is the sympathy on a particularly difficult day when no one else can understand.
It is the support when everyone else seems to be tearing down.
It is the sharing of common interests and goals.
It is the hard work each day to pay the bills and provide for others as well.
It is the difficult balance that saves time for me when there is much to take the extra time.
It is the encouragement to pursue the things that I enjoy.

I write this because often times people will ask what hubby gave me for such and such an occasion.
While this week, there WAS a card and two helium balloons,
often there is nothing,
because we celebrate our love and each other everyday
and his giving goes beyond physical things.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

All Is Vanity

And two vanities are changed.

No longer the dark espresso color ...
For the lighter look ... lighter cabinets.

Now, the three bedrooms are finished - 
repaint if necessary (master),
trim and doors in all rooms.
Two bathrooms are finished - 
trim and doors in both,
vanities in both.

Now onto the main living areas.
My plan was to work on this at the beginning of March,
but I may get a little antsy.

The weather has been so beautiful
that most days I have been able to air the house out while painting
and everything has dried so nicely.

Monday, February 13, 2017

For the Holiday Tomorrow

Yes, I disappeared again.
I am continuing to paint trim throughout the house as well as doors.
I have the two vanities painted out.
We took a weekend trip to Tennessee to check in on some of our former students.

The weather here has been ridiculous - for February.
The trailer was up over 80 yesterday - mid 70s today.
While I enjoy walking in the spring like temps and
I enjoy the daffodils' bright blooms,
I am really missing winter.
Usually February is our cold, rainy, icy month - 
and it sure hasn't been this year!

On Saturday, we celebrated 15 years.
We were introduced in NY 15 years ago on February 10th.
So we are preparing for "Donut Day" this Friday to celebrate our first date,

But for now, my favorite holiday - Valentine's Day.
The packages have been sent out to WI, IN, and NY
and there are a few left to hand deliver tomorrow.

Tuesday is always "date night" for us, so we can celebrate tomorrow after work.
I am going to get some "take out" and have a night off of cooking.
We will start the day with some Orange Raspberry Muffins
(the red is for the holiday - right?)

Orange Raspberry Muffins

For the muffins

2 cups  Almond Flour
¼ tsp Baking Soda
¼ tsp Sea Salt
4 Eggs
¼ cup  Palm Shortening, melted
1/3 cup  Honey
1 tsp  Vanilla Extract
Zest and juice of 1 Orange
6 oz  Raspberries, fresh or frozen

For the topping

¼ cup  Palm Shortening
¼ cup  Coconut Sugar
½ cup  Almond Flour


Preheat the oven to 350 F and grease or line 12 cup muffin tin.
In a medium bowl, combine the almond flour, baking soda, sea salt, and orange zest.
To a large bowl add the eggs, shortening, honey, vanilla extract, and orange juice.
Using a hand or stand mixer, mix the wet ingredients on medium speed.
Add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix until combined.
Fold in the raspberries.
Scoop into the prepared muffin tin.
To make the topping, mix the shortening and coconut sugar in a medium bowl.
Then add the almond flour and stir until incorporated.
Using your hands, sprinkle the mixture over the muffins, breaking the mixture up as you go.
Bake for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the muffins comes out clean.

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

If you give this wife a paint brush ...

One of the favorite books when I was teaching was 
"If you Give a Mouse a Cookie"

Basically the story is a large circle.
The mouse needs milk,
he spills,
he cleans it up,
he cleans the whole house,
he ...
until he is hungry again and needs another cookie.

I must say,
when I get a paint brush and start changing things ...
it just builds and builds and builds.

The bedroom is almost done.
It was a little delayed by the need to help hubby with a clutch job on his work truck.

Wanna peek?

Lighter bedding.
 Repurposed throw pillows that I had covered in brown before.
Side table painted white.
Bed scarf sewn to protect whte bedding from things "thrown" on it.
Small side wall was brown before.

Instead of verse directly on the wall, we put a new verse on a project board.

Sheer curtains for light and privacy.
Hubby fixed the closet door so that it now stays closed.
We painted all the doors and trims and put in new knobs (bye-bye brass).

The little wall here was brown before.
Now it has our wedding samplers and pictures.
Frames painted white and pictures rematted all in white.

Close-up of wedding tributes.

The room was repainted the same color as before (a celery) but I went with satin instead of semi-gloss.
The only thing that is not finished is the vanity in the master bath.
It will be white (hopefully next week).

I have been working on trims and doors in the back rooms as well this week.
Come March, the main living area will get painted grey.
Still making decisions about the kitchen cabinets and counters.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Not a furbaby ... but ...

You all know them,
childless couples whose pets become their children.

No, we have not adopted a dog, cat, fish, or bird ...
but I fear that I have a "house baby."

Yes, I love remaking my house.
It takes time and resources,
but it seems to fill the void for a little while.

We began redecorating our bedroom at the beginning of January.
New duvet and cover.
New memory foam on the mattress.
New curtains.
I am using some pillowcases embroidered by
my great grandmother and finished by my grandmother because they finally match the decor. 
(I am actually using them as shams because they are so special).

This week I am repainting doors and walls
and working on a special wall hanging.

In the past, the room was inspired by Cabelas - 
woodland, pine cones.

Now, a much lighter look.
Keep watching for next weeks Tuesday Transformation
for a glimpse of the crazy lady's "house baby."

Monday, January 23, 2017

In Honor of National Pie Day

I was planning to make the pie sometime soon,
but then my mom mentioned that it was national pie day ...
so I made it today.

An apple pie sweetened only with no sugar added apple juice concentrate
and as a special treat ... a dollop of vanilla bean coconut "ice cream".

Perfect timing because it wasn't the best of days for hubby,
and a pie can help straighten out a day 😋

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

And it is ... January?

Anybody else struggling with this crazy weather.
Oh where, oh where has the winter gone?  oh where oh where can it be?

Ever since our wonderful snowfall ...
spring like temps.

The high today was over 70*!

Kind of missing winter,
but I am enjoying a daily walk without bundling up or traipsing through the mud.

Monday, January 16, 2017


So, tonight was the night to redeem myself ...
the salmon cakes turned out fine.

What else is on the meal plan this week?

Hamburger/Green Bean Pie
Goulash and Salad
Crockpot Turkey Chili Pie
Breakfast for Dinner
Black Bean Plantain Veggie Burgers

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Your Amusement (at my expense)

This could also be titled
"Multitasking Gone Wrong - Very Wrong"

Last night,
the french fries were in the oven,
the green beans on the stove,
the salmon cakes mixed up and ready to be fried ...

There was still time and so I began to make some blueberry muffins for breakfast.

As dusk fell,
I added the blueberries to the "muffins."

When I saw the truck pull in,
I turned on a light and
I reached for the bowl of salmon
there was the bowl of batter
sans blueberries
and ...
there was the bowl of salmon
with 1 cup of blueberries stirred in.

Anyone for blueberry salmon cakes ...

We enjoyed the fries and beans,
but instead of salmon cakes,
we quickly browned some chicken sausage on the stovetop.

Enjoy the Laugh!
Hubby certainly did.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Delight Yourself In The Lord

My little Bible Study on Wednesdays has finished a study of the Proverbs 31 woman.
What a blessing and rebuke that passage was.

The other topic that they picked was "Desires."
It's root was Psalm 37:4.
"Delight thyself also in the Lord: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart."

The girls are at the stage of desiring their own home.
My desire has been to have a home filled with children.

And so we look at Psalm 37:4.
The "magic" key, right?
Delight in God ... Get what you want.😊
Kind of like Hannah's prayer,
the prayer of Jabez,
a simple 1,2,3.

Delight ...

Do I delight in the Lord?
Is He all of my peace, my satisfaction, my fulfillment?
If He is, then He will be the desire of my heart.

Regardless of the situation, my delight needs to be in my God.
He needs to be first.
He needs to take precedence.

What a challenge for the new year!