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Showing posts from September, 2013

A Quiet Sunday Morning

I rarely have a quiet Sunday morning.  Usually Sunday mornings are filled with activity for me: getting myself ready for church (I am a pastor's wife, after all), helping my children get ready for church, preparing a quick breakfast, maybe preparing something for lunch, making final preparations to teach a children's class, making sure the dog is taken care of.  Then when all of that is finished, we jump in the car and head to church where much more activity ensues.  Sundays generally don't have a quiet moment for me until the afternoon--and sometimes even those can be busy as well.

Today is different though.

I am sitting here by the French doors to our back deck watching the rain come down, as I stay wrapped up in my pink Snuggie in a comfy chair with my cell phone, my Bible and some good books and the laptop for my companions while my family is all at church.

I am recovering.

This past week I underwent a hysterectomy.  It was a long time coming and my body was in need…

End-of-the-Week Wrap {camping, co-op, & a birthday}

It has been another busy week ...thus I am doing this wrap-up on Sunday night instead of Friday afternoon. ;)  You'll forgive me though, won't you?

This week we went camping for two days (and I am still cleaning up the aftermath of said camping trip), got some school work accomplished, enjoyed a family movie night, and celebrated my birthday.  It was a good week.

We've been wanting to go camping since the spring and the right opportunity never presented itself.  Either it was too rainy, or too hot, or we were too busy ...it was always something.  Well, we decided it was now or next year.  So we dug out our gear (that hadn't been used in three years) and headed for the woods.  It really was perfect camping weather and we had a great time getting back to nature.  You can read more about that trip here.

I can't say that we got tons of book work done this week, but there was lots of learning happening.  I actually packed a bag full of school books and took them on ou…

Getting Back-to-Nature and Also Some Campfire Pockets That You'll Love!

This past Monday and Tuesday we were able to sneak out of town for a couple of days at a nearby campground and enjoy getting back to nature.  That's definitely a perk of homeschooling--not being confined by a calendar!  
And we had so much fun!  It was good to enjoy the quiet of the woods, although those birds and bugs and such get pretty loud in the night and early mornings sometimes! ;)  The weather couldn't have been more perfect either!  We loved the not-too-warm days and the cool nights.  

And we had some pretty good eats on this trip!  (even if I did forget a few things...).  This trip was planned kind of last minute so I was throwing a camping menu together quickly by checking my camping Pinterest board and scanning my pantry.  We did pretty well.  
Here's what the plan was for our two days in the woods (reality added in parentheses) :
Day 1:
(arrive mid-morning)
Lunch: Hamburgers & Baked Beans (we were hungry so I didn't bother to heat up the beans, we ate …

I've Been Camping ...But I'm Home Again!

If I've seem a little quiet this week, it's because I've been enjoying some unplugged time with my family camping in the woods.  It was incredibly nice to get back-to-nature and just relax!  I'll be back tomorrow with more though here at My Blessed Life.  Hope you're having a great week, too!
Blessings,
Lora

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Tasty Tuesdays {creamed spinach}

Recently when I was making an Italian main dish for our family I had a sudden craving to have some creamed spinach on the side.  The results were so good that I just have to share them with you!

Creamed Spinach 1 (10 oz.) pkg. frozen spinach, cooked and drained well 2 hard-boiled eggs, chopped 1 Tbsp. butter 3 Tbsp. flour 1/2 cup chicken stock 1/2 cup milk 1/8 tsp. nutmeg Salt & Pepper to taste Mozzarella cheese, shredded *****
Place butter in medium skillet; when melted, add flour.  Stir until flour is blended well with the  butter.  Pour in the chicken stock and milk.  Stir continually until mixture is thickened;  remove from heat.  Season sauce with nutmeg, salt and pepper.   Add in the cooked spinach and chopped egg to the sauce,  blending well.  Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese and serve.   Delicious!!

End-of-the-Week Wrap {more new books, Mr. Science, & co-op fun}

Yes, I know that it's already the beginning of a new week, ...but I am just now getting a chance to wrap up this past week.  You'll forgive me for being a little slow to do that, right?  
It was a really good week!  We're enjoying lovely early fall temps and the weather has been so nice.  I still feel like we're struggling a bit to get to find our school groove, but I know we'll get there.  Life doesn't stop so that you can "do school" and life has been very full lately--and it doesn't look like it's letting up any time soon.  
So the laundry is piling up again and there's dust on all of the furniture and I'm sleepy by the afternoon from getting up earlier than I'm used to yet.  But that's okay.  We're loving life and I feel like I'm learning new things every day and not just the kiddos!
Oh--and did I mention that I got to meet up with some of my blogging friends this week, too?!  So much fun!  You can read more about …

Meeting New Friends

A few years ago I never would have thought I would be jumping in my car and heading off to meet up with internet friends with whom I had only had virtual communication before.  But this past Monday night I was so excited to meet up with a couple of blogging friends who live in the same region that I do.  
One friend, Jennifer, I actually know in real life, but have only met a few times through homeschooling activities.  She lives in a different town and so most of our communication is through the internet.  Jennifer has a lovely new blog called Godly Glimpses.  
Crystal met up with us from yet another town not too far away.  She has a wonderful blog called Serving Joyfully.  She and I are both a part of a bloggers group on Facebook and have only interacted there until this week.  Ironically, she and Jennifer had "met" in a different Facebook bloggers group as well.  So this was a fun little reunion for us all!  
These ladies are such sweet Christian women and we had such a …

Tasty Tuesdays {Homemade Seasoned Salt}

Hey, there!  Welcome back to Tasty Tuesdays!  
Today I'm sharing one of my fave kitchen ingredients: Homemade Seasoned Salt

If you're anything like me, you enjoy using seasoned salt on a variety of dishes: pot roast, vegetables, casseroles, and much, much more.  However, several  years ago I discovered that in lots of store-bought seasoned salt one of the main ingredients is ....sugar.  
Say what?!?!  
Yep, sugar.  Crazy, huh?  It's true though.  Just look in your spice cabinet and see if your brand is one of those sugar-adding culprits.  
As I'm sure you probably agree that sugar is not a necessary ingredient for seasoned salt, let's talk about how you can avoid that.  First, you could buy specialty seasoned salt, such as the one sold by Tastefully Simple.  It's very delicious, but also very pricey.  Or, secondly, you could make your own--because you probably already have all of the ingredients you need right there in your spice cabinet anyway!  Very cost e…

What's For Dinner {Sept 9th)

Monday morning has risen way too soon for my family.  We've had a busy weekend and are moving really slowly this morning.

As I wrap up planning for this week's dinner menus I am very thankful for my slow cooker!  I'm keeping it as simple as possible this week with that and also making my hubby fire up his grill.

Monday:  {Leftover clean-up night}

Tuesday:Slow-Cooker Chicken Paprika

Wednesday:Mexican Pizzas  

Thursday:Grilled Smoked Sausage with Veggies

Friday:Slow-Cooker Cream Cheese Chicken Chili w/Rice

Saturday:{to-be-decided}

This post is linked to Menu Plan Monday at I'm an Organizing Junkie.

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End of the Week Wrap-Up {1st day, a field trip, & Co-op!}

Wow!  Can't believe it's time to wrap-up the first official week of school for us.  It's been an good one overall, even though we're still working on getting back into the swing of things.  

We kicked off the week with Labor Day and a visit to the Frist Center in Nashville.  They've had an exhibit this summer that I really wanted to take the family to see and this was the first chance we've had.  (It's still on through September 15th, if you're interested).  

The exhibit is called Sensuous Steel and it's all Art Deco era vehicles--most of which are very rare.  I love the decades of the 20's, 30's, and 40's (think: Hercule Poirot) and really enjoyed this little automobile time travel.

If you're a fan of Agatha Christie's Poirot books, you'll know what I mean when I say Hastings would have loved these cars:)

Of course, no visit to the Frist is complete without some time in the Martin ArtQuest Gallery and we definitely spent so…

Our First Day of Back-to-{home}School

We survived our first day of back-to-{home}school yesterday!  I just love not starting until September!

And the best part is that it technically was our 13th day of our school year instead of the 1st because of our summer "schooling" :)  It was just our first day to sit down with all of our new books and begin our regular schedule.

It really was a great day, too, in spite of a few challenging moments.

We kicked off with morning chores and then a yummy breakfast of bologna cups and fried potatoes accompanied by 'devotions with Dad'.  Then we dived right into the books, taking a morning snack break and then a lunch break to our local Zaxby's for free back-to-school lunches for the kiddos (I love their kids' club!).

When we came back home we did our last subject as a family (history), then took off for Nashville for the monthly free Lego build.  We just love those!  Afterwards I took the kiddos to Bob Evans for another free meal before heading home and going s…

Tasty Tuesdays {Baked Chicken Salad}

It's Tasty Tuesday again!!  
I recently made an old favorite of ours.  I had forgotten just how much I love this recipe!  I first enjoyed it at a delightful restaurant in Eureka Springs, AR~The Victorian Sampler.  This charming tearoom in the beautiful Victorian mansion on the hill closed for a while, but it appears that it may have reopened.  I sure do hope so!  Because if you're ever in that area you definitely should visit there--and don't forget to pick up one of their wonderful cookbooks!
(Sorry the pan in this photo is an ugly foil one, but I was baking huge pans of this for a luncheon at our church).

Baked Chicken Salad
4 cups chicken, cooked & diced 2 cups celery, diced 2 Tbsp. lemon juice 4 hard-boiled eggs, diced 2/3 cup almonds 1 small jar pimentos, diced 1-1/2 cup mayo (not Miracle Whip) 1 tsp. salt 1/4 cup onion, minced 1 cup cheese, shredded plain potato chips, crushed ***** Combine all ingredients except potato chips.   Stir gently, mixing well and add to…

What's For Dinner {Sept 2nd}

Well, it's here.  September!  My fave month of the year ...outside of December.  It just feels like new beginnings.  And even though it's still hot outside, I know that my favorite season is just around the corner ...FALL!!  *love*

Makes me want to whip up batches of soup and bake cookies!!  I could live on soup!

This week we start back to {home}school and there's lots of other things on the calendar, too, so having a dinner plan is going to be imperative.  I'm glad that I've begun my stash of freezer meals, although I really need to do more of that.

Here's the plan for this week:

Monday:{grabbing a snack out between a day in Nashville and attending a funeral visitation}

Tuesday:{we're headed back to Nashville for the monthly free Lego build so we're eating at Bob Evans where kids eat free on Tuesdays!}

Wednesday:Baked Potato bar (crockpot meal)

Thursday: Goulash (from the freezer)

Friday: Homemade Pizza

Saturday:Homemade Corn Dogs with Parmesan Garlic Fries

Happy September!

Happy September and Happy Labor Day!!
I'm out enjoying some family time today~ I hope you are having a wonderful day as well.
See you tomorrow!
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