Friday, November 18, 2011

Sometimes I Amaze...

As I've said before, I love to cook. I will often take whatever I have in pantry or fridge and concoct a dish or a meal...what's so amazing about that you say. People usually cook their meals from what they have in the pantry or fridge. Okay, you are so right!

Here's what I mean....I was supposed to supply a dish of "Green Bean Casserole" for the school's Thanksgiving dinner last night.
Because I'm such a rebel (actually it was because I had no cream of anything soup in the house) I decided to go against tradition and make roasted green beans.
Yep, ROASTED! Of course I can't just bring a dish of roasted beans, I have to make it look pretty!
So in the pantry I had: Garlic bulbs, cans of mushrooms (would have preferred fresh baby Bella's but remember I'm working with what I have on hand), olive oil and red potatoes.
In the fridge green onions & cherry tomatoes. My beans were in the freezer!

Here's an idea of the recipe. Altho' I'm not big on being a stickler for following recipe's.

8-10 green onions, cut into 1- 1 1/2" pieces
2 handfuls of cherry tomatoes
8 cloves of garlic, peeled but left whole (I will definitely put more in next time)
1 small can of mushrooms drained well (I even patted mine down with a paper towel)
4-5 medium red potatoes, scrubbed and cut into bite size pieces
1 large bag of green beans (mine were whole, cause it's prettier that way!) thawed and          patted dry

I drizzled olive oil on my baking sheet (must have sides on it), and layered my veggies. Tossed them around to coat them as best as I could, drizzled a bit more where needed (remember when roasting veggies you want them oiled or they will just get dried out). Then I grabbed some sea salt, pepper and some rosemary. Sprinkled over and mixed it around again.
Had my oven heated to 450 degrees F. Put the pan in for 3/15 minute increments and stirred it (3 times).
They looked delish, just the way they were, and tasted yummy too!
But I can't be outdone by all those fancy, schmancy chefs....I had to add a little som'n som'n.
                                                  GOAT CHEESE!
Not kidding, I had that in my refrigerator and didn't have cream of mushroom soup in my pantry! Nuff said!
It.was.the.perfect.addition!! Just a little salty, just a little creamy, just a lotta yummy!
Let me tell you something else that is awesome....the leftovers I had for lunch today were superb!! I wished there had been more!!

Do you often have to come up with your own dishes out of your cupboards? Do you enjoy it or do you get stressed? I love suits my creative side!

On another cooking note...Tuesday was the start of deer hunting in our neck of the woods (and yes I come from a family of prolific hunters. We eat what we kill or donate to veterans, food pantries etc.). Monday night a distant cousin of mine and his wife stayed at my parents to get an early start in the woods the next day. I invited everyone down for chili and corn bread at the last minute. I made my usual chili recipe (only using one lb. of turkey and a lb. of venison I had) and added a little something extra. I was getting rave reviews from everyone at the table, so I decided I would reveal my secret ingredient: grape jelly! Yep, I had read it quite a while ago in a chili cook off recipe book I was given. So I tried a big ole spoon of it.  It was yummy!! I have  7 mouths that will testify to that!

Do you find yourself "spicing" up an old recipe? Have you ever tried something in a recipe that wasn't on the recipe card? How has it worked for you? Let me know, are you a conformer or a transformer when it comes to recipes?

Thursday, November 17, 2011

We are trying...

To gear ourselves up for winter here in the Frumpy House! We've got the hats, mittens, gloves, scarves, warm coats, woolen throws & extra blankets out.
The clothes have been switched from summer to winter. The house has been cleaned & organized (except the crazy etsy closet!).
Dried beans, chili fixins, noodles, rice & potatoes have been stocked up for yummy soups & casseroles! Coffee, hot tea & cocoa are enjoyed throughout the day. Oatmeal is a warm go to breakfast on frosty mornings! Warm sweet breads for treats.
More indoor activities during the chill to the bone windy, overcast days! Crafts, tent building, baking!
Lots of family time, record playing, book reading, movie watching. More trips to the library!
This momma is happy to begin her "hibernation" months!
How about you? Do you have snow coming soon? Do you enjoy the winter, or are you always cold like my husband?

--Jeanette using BlogPress on iPhone

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Snow, Snow, Snow!

I'm usually ready for the first snow fall. After the hot sticky summer...of which I am not a fan, I love the beautiful color of fall & the sparkly frost of winter.

So today, today is the day!!

All of a sudden it started to sleet. Not fun... But it didn't take 30 seconds before that turned into flakes...

Big, fluffy flakes! The very best kind!

Pretty soon the ground was getting covered! Yeah! Nothing like covering up the ugly brown yard!

This girl was happy! She wants to build a snowman!! Hahaha! Get in the spirit I say...

This man says "wake me up when we r in Nashville"!! Haha!

She of course has to go out in it...I don't blame her. I did the same when I was little!

This won't last long I know...the sun is peaking out before I even finish typing this up! Oh well, it's just the first snow, there's lot more where this came from!!!

How about you? Do you like the snow & winter months? Do you live in it but hate it? Or are you blessed enough (the hubby thinks) to live in a warmer climate where there is little to no snow?

--Jeanette using BlogPress on iPhone

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Is there light at the end of the tunnel?

Most of you who have been reading here for the last couple years know how my two offspring have the audacity to drive their mother bonkers...sadly too true.

But just last night I was in the living room watching the evening news & I heard voices. Multiple in more than the 2 munchkin voices that I usually hear. So I sat and listened for a couple minutes. This is what was happening...

The 8 year old was reading to the 5 year old. Not just reading, reading & giving the books characters different voices!! I tried to get a sound clip for you...but was spied by the little'un, who saw my hand holding the phone around the corner!!

Not only that, but about 7:45 pm Liyah is sitting @ the table eating some chips & salsa & Lauryn is no where to be seen. I asked Li where her sister was & she says, "She went to bed". Ummmm, okay! Sounds good to me! I went in to check on her & she was all snuggled in ready to sleep. She said she didn't feel sick & there was no indication of a fever...just a tired girly!!
Who knew!? The training, the teaching, the pleading & yelling could eventually end up so well!

There is a slight possibility, that this is an indication of my children growing up...very slight!
--Jeanette using BlogPress on iPhone

Monday, November 7, 2011

Dare to Compare?!

This past Sunday was my eldest daughter’s birthday.

We celebrated & enjoyed time together as a family. Had some cheese cake and brownies (her favorites). Opened a few gifts & played a few games. Yet, I worried that we weren’t doing “enough”.

Yep, you read it right… as a mom I worried that we were not making her day special enough, memorable enough, fun enough or even close to enough!

I think that the old saying “keeping up with the Joneses” has taken on a whole new level with access to the internet. Whew, I’ll say it…the internet can be evil (on sooo many different levels). Here’s where I’m coming from: There are many social sites out there, where people that are like minded can connect. But when you connect, do you have a tendency to compare yourself with others (if this is not a problem for you, you may not be interested this article)? It is no longer, the “Joneses” that live down the street, it is the “Smiths” that live across the states, or the “Jacksons” that live across the ocean. It is spread throughout the world, and it can be a horrible trap!
Take for instance my daughter’s birthday: She chose to have a sleepover Friday night with some friends from school. Sunday we had grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins over for more goodies and birthday wishes. That was it. She received some nice cards and presents. She was happy with what she received, she enjoyed the time with friends and family.
She was happy, but was I?!

On the same day, on the internet, a mom that I follow on an iPhone app called istagram (where you take and share pictures with those that you follow or follow you, think FB/Twitter through photos)was taking pictures of her newly 2 year old sons’ birthday party. Let’s see, there were homemade dinosaur tails for each kid to wear, there masks to go along with them. There were color coordinated cupcakes and cake pops and punch and the beautifully decorated theme table. The child and many friends were at a kids play place, with slides, inflatables, tunnels…etc. They had a pizza party, as well as the treats. There were MANY gifts for the little guy. There were even homemade goody bags for the guests that came, in color coordinating bags.
...Am I jealous? On some levels.
...Am I angry and sulking? NO!
...Do I wish that I were talented enough or had the money to put together a party like that? Partly.
...Would any of these THINGS make my daughter any happier than what she was? Probably, for a short time.

So, what’s the deal? Why am I writing about it? Maybe just to alleviate my guilt, that I didn’t make a big to do for my daughter’s birthday.
Possibly to help me realize that we did what we could, with what we had and that should always be good enough.
To remind myself that no matter what you want to give your child, the best things you can give them are free and it is never worth going into debt to do something for them.

The family I referred to may well have been able to afford the big celebration they put on for their birthday boy. I don’t begrudge them the wonderful time they had with family and friends. I’m just reminding myself that what we did was just as pleasing and just as important to my daughter!

Moms sometimes have it bad when it comes to trying to do what other moms are doing. We often compare ourselves, our homes, our mothering to other moms we know (in person or through the internet). Moms let’s not get sucked into the web of comparing, one upping or coveting what we see. Let’s just remember to love, celebrate and enjoy (all free things!) those that are in our own home!

This beautiful girl was tired, happy & all about being an 8 year old!! As for me, I'm looking forward to another year of growing with her, learning with her & loving her to the utmost of my abilities, & not worrying so much about how it compares to other moms!!

--Jeanette using BlogPress on iPhone

Thursday, November 3, 2011

When all else fails....

and you can't think of a single thing to blog a nice linky list!!

So here goes:
A few favorite blogs that I've read this week,

--Always the wonderful Miss Jenny of Frecklewonder fame! I love the blog, love the shop and am always drooling when viewing her instagram feed on the instagram iPhone app! Talk about a lucky thrifter! Whooo-hoo!

--I love that Miss Cedar is an ever loving Vintage Wife who blogs about her baby, her cooking, and her love of vintage! She's groovin' on Facebook & instagram between baby wrangling, moving and the usual home maker stuff! Whew, I'm tired just typing that!

--A blog that I have rib stitches while reading is the wonderful, and newly pregnant mom Rita. Who has fought her way through Frumpdom and come through on the other side! She's a grand story teller and if even an nth of a degree of what she writes about it true (and I'm sure it is)...I'm pretty happy I have only two children, and that they are girls (without the outside bits n pieces if I dare say!).
The non vis a vis networking of Twitter has introduced me to a plethora of blogs, shops (etsy and others) people, businesses and sundry other things. Just this morning I followed a link from my twitter feed and found a delightfully funny blog [post]....

--you'll find it HERE! Danielle is a funny lady, who likes to lay all the realities of a blogger's life out on the table, so to speak. ('bout wet myself reading the phrase "someone will get diarrhea"). Her jewelry is delightful, just like her blogposts showing her outfits (many thrifted items...go girrrrrl!).
If you take some time and go visit anyone of these ladies through their blogs, shops, facebook pages, twitter or walk up to their doors. You could probably tell them that I sent you...but only half of them would know my name!! Ahhhh, the anonymity of the internet!!

Please, if you have a fav "person" on the internet, share a linky with me! Let me know what and why you are diggin their blog. Or maybe they give good twitter. Possibly they are the king/queen of FB postings!! I'm all fingers....and would like to clickety-click with some new friends!
Thanks for reading. I promise I shall try and make something interesting happen in my life so I have some great posts to read in the near future!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The Reason we Have Friends...

To encourage us when we are down, to love us when we are unlovable, to back us up when we are going against the odds, to compare husbands with when we are fed up with their “manly ways” and to commiserate with when are kids are driving us up the wall, over the ceiling and right out the back door!

I have such a friend….she’s my 2nd in command (I always let the hubby be first in command, something about ego. Yadda yadda yadda). She’s the one I call, text or message when I’m at my wits end with the man of the house or my strong willed girlies.

I have just one complaint about our friendship…. It’s long distance!

We spent four years together in college & then life led us in different directions. She now lives in the Madison, WI area with her family & I live here in the Lakeview area with mine. Sadly, we don’t get to see each other as much as we’d like.

You know what is the best thing about friendships? You can go for quite a while without seeing each other and still be the best of friends. Still be able to talk about anything, everything and maybe everyone!

How many of us could really go through life without a good, close relationship with another person? How many of us would be able to stand not talking, sharing, baring our souls or gossiping with someone else? Someone who may have differing opinions on some things, but is willing to listen and see your point of view. A friend who will eat chocolate with you when you can’t stand your diet anymore (and not judge you for it). The person who can look at you and know you’re having a bad day…and probably know if it’s the budget, work, the husband or the kids that is causing your bad day!

How about you, readers? Is your very best friend close or far away? Does your close friend live in your house? Does your friend live down the street? Can you get together daily, weekly or more like me, once or twice a year?

I hope for everyone that you let your best friend know how very much they mean to you. How they have encouraged you to become your bestest, best! Tell them through word of mouth or on your favorite tech device that they mean more to you than your favorite coffee. Let them know they would come before any trip to Disney World. That baring sickness or death in your own family, you would be there for them…no matter what.

Here are a few friend quotes I found on the interwebs just today…feel free to pick and choose which would best apply to you and your bestest friend.
--“I think what I need, more than anything else in the world, is to be told (just once) that a friend doesn’t know what they would do without me”
--“A friend can tell you things you don’t want to tell yourself.”
--“If all my friends jumped off a bridge, I wouldn’t jump with them. I’d be at the bottom, waiting to catch those idiots.”
--“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart, and can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words.”
--“A friend will calm you down when you are angry, but a best friend will skip beside you with a baseball bat singing someone’s gonna get it” (okay, really this one is just sarcastic)

--Jeanette using BlogPress on iPhone