Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from March, 2008

Murder on the Orient Express: A Book Review

Well, I finally crossed one off my Spring reading list! Yea! Lying around, feeling so crudy these past few days found me needing a little extra self-indulgence. And a good mystery is pure and total self-indulgence for me! So I picked this classic from my stack.

Murder on the Orient Express
by Agatha Christie

(summary from bookcover)
While en route from Syria to Paris, in the middle of a freezing winter's night, the Orient Express is stopped dead in its tracks by a snowdrift. Passengers awake to find the train still stranded and to discover that a wealthy American has been brutally stabbed to death in his private compartment. Incredibly, that compartment is locked from the inside. With no escape into the wintery landscape the killer must still be on board! Fortunately, the brilliant Belgian inspector Hercule Poirot is also on board, having booked the last available berth. He launches an immediate and urgent investigation into this vexing crime--for which each of the thirteen other pass…

God's Handiwork

This time of year showcases God's handiwork in such a beautiful way! Seeing everything coming back to life after the long winter is like seeing mini *resurrections*.

our blueberry bushes budding out
the dogwoods blooming out
a trumpet vine in bloomour hostas poking thru the ground
azaleas bloomingThe heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of His hands. Psalm 19:1

Chicken Soup & Jello Water

It has been a rough few days around here. I felt pretty cruddy on Wednesday, but then Thursday was feeling better. However, on Thursday morning the Princess woke up feeling bad. She seemed to improve over the day, but by bedtime was feeling yucky again. And I felt like I was dying by bedtime last night. I don't remember when I had such a high fever! It was a pretty miserable night. Thankfully, the fever is gone this morning, but the Princess and I are both still puny (that's a nice Southern word for feeling terrible). Yesterday I made us some (from the box) chicken noodle soup and this morning whipped up some Jello water for the Princess--both remedies from my childhood. In case you're wondering what Jello water is, it's simply the Jello before it firms up in the fridge--you just drink it instead of eating it. I guess my mom thought sugar water was the best thing for a sick kid, and I sure did love it (still do!). Although her potato soup was truly the BEST remedy for …

Barbecued Pork Loin

I have this very dear friend named Donna. We've been friends since college (which for us, is about 18 years now!! wow!!). Since college days, we've gotten together several times whether in her home state or mine. On one of those visits she gave me this wonderful cookbook and I have really enjoyed it! This week I was looking for a simple way to season a boneless pork loin for our small group meeting. I found the perfect recipe in here. Thanks, Donna!
Barbecued Pork Loin

A Cleveland Collection, Jr. League Cookbook
(marinade)
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup barbecue sauce with mild garlic flavor
1/2 cup dry vermouth or water
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup wine vinegar
1/8 tsp. dried ginger ~~~~ 5 lb. boneless pork loin
1 tsp. cornstarch
Combine all marinade ingredients until well blended; pour over meat. Cover; refrigerate 6 hours or overnight. Preheat oven to 425F. Remove meat from marinade; reserve marinade. Reduce oven to 325F. Bake at 325F for 1 1/2 hours or until internal temperatur…

And a good time was had by all....

Things are getting back to routine here today. Well...sort of. I feel pretty yucky and have spent a large part of the afternoon on the sofa. Just that lovely achey-tight chest-a little feverish feeling. Tonight I'm staying in from our mid-week church service for a little more rest. I figured the nursery wouldn't really want me around coughing on all of the children anyway. Vince took our kiddos with him, so I'm getting some real rest time. The weather is so nice today, so I'm enjoying sitting here by the open door and listening to the outdoor sounds (birds, dogs, the hum of a lawn mower).

The past couple of days Vince's parents were here and we had a very nice visit with them. It was their first time here where we live in Alabama and we probably wore them out a little seeing some of the sights. I know the kiddos wore them out playing! They had a lot of fun!

visiting the lion habitat at the University of Northern Alabama
at UNA with Meme & Papaplaying Elefun with P…

Family Fun

Whew! This past weekend was quite a whirlwind. My parents and sister were here for several days and we had so much fun. My dad was here for an extra couple of days, so we got to have a little more fun with him at the park. We had some beautiful Spring weather for flying kites!



Mr. B with PapiThe Princess running with the windOn Saturday we had some Easter egg hunt fun in the backyard. It was the first time Mr. B has really done one and the Princess probably doesn't remember the last time she did; they had such a blast!gathering eggsEaster morning came early, but the kiddos were so ready to wear their new clothes. Mr. B said "I look just like Daddy" (even though my hubby didn't actually wear a suit yesterday:).Easter morning finerywishing Papi & Nana a safe trip back hometelling Aunt Kari goodbyeThe family fun is still continuing...Vince's parents arrived today for a visit. It's been a long time since we've seen them, so we're enjoying our visit tog…

Happy Birthday, Princess!

Today my first precious child from God turned 5 years old! I can hardly believe how quickly the time has gone by already. She is such a little treasure from the Lord.

The Princess getting ready to open her gifts The Princess with her new *big-girl* bike & helment the Princess & Mr. B with their new Playhouse The Princess blows out her candles a wonderful family celebration You may remember me talking about making those lamb cakes. Well, I decided to make a bunny cake and a lamb cake. They aren't professionally decorated, but they are made with much love. If I had more time, I would've tried to make that Wilton Cake-Decorating class instructor proud, but there wasn't time for piping a million stars...The kiddos loved them though. To quote Mr. B (when he saw them), "Oh. My. Goodness!" a close-up of the bunny cake
a close-up of the lamb cake


The Birthday/Easter cakes

He is Risen!

Some vintage Easter greetings....





"....I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die...."

John 11:25




Have a blessed Easter!

For the Love of Reading

I'm holding myself accountable to complete my reading list and joining Callapidder Days' Spring Reading Thing 2008. I LOVE to read, but with most of my reading being done after the kiddos are in bed it sometimes takes me forever to get books finished. And then sometimes I put a book in my bookcase and forget about it. Or when I look over my bookcase, I re-discover books that I haven't read in years and would love to read again. So with all of those things considered, I have chosen the following books for my Spring reading.




My personal reading list, in no particular order:
The Reagan Diaries,by Ronald ReaganDangerous Surrender, by Kay WarrenMurder on the Orient Express, by Agatha ChristieVelvet Elvis, by Rob BellMy Cousin Rachel, by Daphne du MaurierJamaica Inn, by Daphne du MaurierLife Management for Busy Women, by Elizabeth George (a re-read)The Seven Longings of the Human Heart,by Mike BicklePrince Caspian, by C.S. Lewis (a re-read)Thou Givest, They Gather, by Amy Carmicha…

Easter Projects

This afternoon (while Mr. B has been napping) the Princess and I made Easter cards. We had so much fun together cutting, pasting and stamping. I'm so glad she enjoys that sort of thing! It's fun quality time together for us.



My next project is the Princess' birthday cake. Since her day falls on Easter this year, I thought I would do something I've been wanting to try for a while. You may remember this old issue of Victoria with the precious lamb cake on the cover:

and the sweet mini lamb cakes shown on the inside:
Well, when that issue came out I had to have those cake molds:
I've never yet used them, but THIS year I'm going to ! It'll be a special Easter birthday cake celebration! I'm still working on what recipe to use, but I'm sure it'll all come together. I've never baked in these types of pans though, so if anyone has any tips for me--bring them on!

**UPDATE: I just found the most adorable Easter egg project that I so wish I had time to d…

Spring Has Sprung!

I hope that wherever you are, you are enjoying a beautiful day! Here in the Deep South, it is pretty and sunny (even if it's still cool and in the 50's/60's). We're scheduled for a perfect Easter weekend (no rain!), so I pray that holds true.
Here are a few signs of Springtime around our yard..... baby's breath creeping flox
a raiding squirrel???

Here's My Card!

Yea! My John Adams card came--postage included! It's so pretty, I almost want to keep it. I think I will share it with a dear friend though. I hope you have recieved yours, too. If not, go here and create one today!

Menu Plan Monday

So, last week went very well....I am lovin' this menu planning! This week I did another little inventory of the kitchen to decide what we're having this week. I always find such good stuff that I forgot that I bought! Besides what I've planned here for us, I've also got a couple of extra meals to plan out for some friends who've recently had babies. I remember what a blessing it was for us when our children were born to have friends bring us meals during those first weeks, so I always try to do that for others.

Monday: Vince is taking me out--to bribe me to be in one of his videos*

Tuesday: chicken fried rice, eggrolls, teryaki noodles, stir-fry veggies

Wednesday: fellowship meal at church

Thursday: 3-cheese tortellini w/marinara sauce, salad, garlic bread

Friday: grilled salmon, mashed potatoes, veggie side dish

All-in-all a delicious week! I have some good leftovers saved up for lunches, too. The weekend will be busy and fun. My parents, sister and a friend are coming…

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!

A Good Day

It's been a great Lord's day. It started with us actually getting to church early (amazing!). The nursery/preschool dept. (of which I am in charge) went pretty smoothly. I even got to slip into the main sanctuary for a good portion of the sermon!
Lunch was fun with friends at the local Japanese restaurant (fried rice-yum!). I even got to squeeze in a little nap--which was much needed with the sinus/allergy stuff I've got going on. The kiddos were so good today, too. And tonight youth service was really awesome! God's presence was so strong and the worship was wonderful.
Yes, it's been a great day!

A Little Link Love

Today will be quite busy with our young marrieds small group at our house tonight (we're the hosts, not the young marrieds), so I've got some cooking to do. I've had a late start, too, because 1.) I got to bed too late last night 2.) I spent half the night falling off the side of my son's twin bed getting him to sleep there and 3.) I'm fighting a sore throat and some sinus stuff (it's Spring!).

But I thought I'd just share some good stuff that I found at some of my favorite places while drinking coffee this morning:

1. Kelli @ There Is No Place Like Home made the cutest *Spring* sign. I think I may have to try that!

2. Anna @ Pleasantview School House shares a delicious-looking recipe for Limeade--yum!

3. My sister, Kari @ logorrhea shares a beautiful poem that she has written (she's so talented!!)

4. Tina @ Cherry Hill Cottage shows you how to make the most adorable flower pot wreath (this I am definitely making !).

5. The girls over @ Blissfully Domestic sh…

The Season's First Picnic

I don't know about where you live, but here in Northwest Alabama it is a beautiful day--around 70F! This only increases Spring Fever, ya know?
The kiddos wanted to eat outside for lunch and I was happy to oblige. Something about the outdoors just makes you eat better, I think. So I fixed them tuna salad (for the first time, too) and they loved it--or maybe the weather just made it taste delicious.
Speaking of Spring and all, that means swimsuit season is on the way--yikes! For my husband's b-day I got him a membership to a fitness center--he's been wanting one forever, so I wasn't just trying to give him a hint or anything. He was so excited! He's been working out almost every single day since and has already lost over 5 lbs. I'm so proud of him! He's eating better, too. Sooooo, I thought I'd better start being a little more diligent in the fitness area, too. A girl at our church (she's a personal trainer) has started a (FREE) workout class for wome…

The Joy of a Letter

I've always been a letter writer, ever since I learned how to write. I still keep in touch with pen-pals that I've had for 30 years! Even in this computer age, I still love a handwritten letter, both writing one and receiving one. There's just nothing like opening the mailbox and finding a REAL letter from a dear friend. It's just the best!
Well, Clarice at Storybook Woods gave a link today for a beautiful card with a quote by either John Adams or Abigal Adams. It's free! Go check it out if you're interested. I can't wait till mine comes. Till then I'll be thinking of which friend that I want to share it with.

Menu Plan Monday

Well, I didn't make it around to planning last week. We took a little trip to Nashville for my hubby's birthday and the rest of the week was so busy that there was no use in planning to cook. I'm back this week though! I really am getting into the menu planning and I miss it when I don't do it-ha!

Just a few notes on my last menu plan though: the apricot chicken was pretty good, although I have finally decided that I just don't like Onion Soup Mix in anything. I think it would've been much better had I left it out (like I always think about everything that I put that mix in:). And the chicken & tortilla dumplings were good, but not so good that I would make them again. I think I've finally worked up enough courage to make my mom's recipe. I don't know about you, but if it's something wonderful that Mom makes I'm always *afraid* to try it. I think I may butcher it and I'd rather just let her continue making it. However, since we now li…

Good Things for the Easter Season

Mrs. Wilt over at The Sparrow's Nest is doing this really great series of posts that I wanted to tell you about. There are several so far with (I'm hoping) more to come! Each one gives a fun and creative idea for keeping your family focused on Christ throughout the Easter season. Just head over to her site to check them out. You can simply scroll down through her posts--which are great, I know you'll enjoy them!--or you can click here for all of the Beyond the Bunny posts thus far.

SNOW!!

Well, snow finally made it to our corner of the state! Of course, it's just a couple of inches, but we take what we can get down here. I've been so *jealous* of all those gorgeous snow pics I've been looking at for months on those northern bloggers' sites:) Now I can share a few of my own (don't laugh at the grassy snow angels-ha!).



the Princess packs a snowballMr. B loving the snowmaking snow angelshome sweet home in it's late winter glory