Louisiana Bride: November 2013

Friday, November 29, 2013

Can We Extend This Week... by a week?

This week is coming to a close... and I can't exactly say I'm happy about that. 

Oh why can't every week be a work free week? 


1. Jeremy recently changed the windshield wipers on my car, well they didn't snap on that great apparently. I was driving home from the gym, and the next thing I knew one had flipped and nearly flew off the car. It was freezing and raining, sot here was no chance I'd fix it, I just drove home the rest of the way partially blinded by the rain. Good times, good times. Seriously though, I thought it was pretty funny.

2. We chaperoned for our church's youth group on their trip to YEC. Maybe we just have a great group of kids, but it was seriously a blast. Plus we weren't the main people in charge, so that made the trip that much more enjoyable. Jeremy and I toted around a car full of 8th grade girls the whole time and I just had the best time acting as silly as possible with them. I did realize my age though at the end, this girl is not (and I mean NOT) into the current rap music. Christian or secular. It's just too dang loud, plus you can't dance around to it. There was just something fun about the 90's rap, at least most of it.

3. Mom used pecans from Pop's yard this year for Thanksgiving, then again she uses them every year. I couldn't quit laughing that he labeled them "Backyard." My first comment to my sister was, "Where's front yard 2010?" After chatting on IG it appears this is a grandparent thing, and there are many grandmother that swear by their backyard trees.

4. Thanksgiving. Aww Thanksgiving weather. I couldn't be happier than I am with this low 40's weather.

5. Thanksgiving ended with several bad decisions though, it started with the crazies at WalMart and then ended with a riot over boots at Belk. I got the books I wanted, by the skin of my teeth, and it was flat crazy. At least the people in Belk were nice, at WalMart this crazy girl (who I told 15 minutes earlier that this was in fact a moving line) lost her mind on me when we got close to the check out. WalMart is not for the faint of heart, let me assure you of that.

So tell me, did anyone else brave the Black Friday insanity today? 

Thursday, November 28, 2013

be thankful.

It's Thanksgiving, the house is full of family,
 and we are off work. 
Life couldn't better,
and there's so much to be thankful for. 

image via

It's "been a year" to say the least, 
I could rant and rave 
but instead let's focus on the good that's
come from this year. 

I'm thankful that...

somehow we've survived the last 
full year of graduate school

Jeremy easily found a job
for internship & I did too
(even though I'd rather complain about it)

our new church family is amazing,
I was afraid for a second we wouldn't 
find a place to serve and that 
was quickly changed

everyone is healthy and happy 
in our little clan.

this little blog has taken off a little more
and I've had the chance to meet
some amazing ladies
and make new fun friends

even though nothing ever goes
exactly my way
God has protected us this year
andt things have gone His way

the man I married really is 
a great guy,
it makes me so happy
when people speak so highly of him
he works so hard
and it's nice to see someone 
other than myself notice.

What are you thankful for this year? 


Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Monkey-See-Monkey-Do

Moving really put a kink in how much we get to see family. 

Going 3 1/2 hours south didn't help, then changing jobs and what not at the very end of our graduate school budget this summer pushed us to the limits. 

So unnecessary travel just hasn't happened. 

Yesterday though, for the first time since July, I got to see this little nut case!


Oh Little Joshy Poo -  who sleeps like his mother and is my twin during his waking hours. This little host mess decided Meme's new camera was cool and that she could take pics of him.

There were a few serious faces, but we were going for silly.

I had to leave off the pig nose picture, it was creeping Laura and I out way too much.


I was playing around last night and editing these in PicMonkey and decided to edit out his dark circles. It's super easy to do facial edits and have them look natural by the way; but this child without dark circles does not look like the same person.

He looked oddly enough like the little piggy he was pretending to be.

So we quickly deleted that overly and went on out way.


Rudy, who's been with my parents for over a month (he isn't an apartment dwelling dog at all) proved he loved Jeremy more than me.

In a desperate attempt to touch Jeremy he stood that way for no less than 10 minutes.

It was also past his bedtime (which for some reason has been bumped up to 7pm from 9 hanging out with my old man daddy) so he was struggling to stay awake.

Look closely and you'll see what I mean.

Ellie on the other hand, two nights away from Jeremy and you see how she's acting.


Josh was quickly intrigued by the pictures I was taking of Rudy and wanted to see every single one, so I told him to go get his camera and we'd take pics together.

He took his first pic.

Showed it to me.

I told him "that's awesome."

And the child nearly died of happiness.

Laura and I were rolling on the floor laughing at his smile - seriously ridiculously happy.


Rudy on the other hand, just kept napping.

Which is a perfect subject for a pre-k kid, especially when he starts telling other people to be quiet so the dog doesn't move.

Later on Jeremy snuck into the bedroom to watch TV ad Laura and I were still chatting, we noticed Josh wasn't around and we were tired so we went to see what the guys were doing.

Jeremy was dead asleep and Joshua was patiently waiting on Jeremy to wake up and start another TV show on the computer.

Once we came in Jeremy woke up, but apparently there was a "Jeremy biting incident." Joshua quickly put him in place.

Joshua - "Meme tell Jeremy not to eat me."
Me - "Jeremy don't eat Joshua."
Joshua - "Jeremy when people eat toys they get germs. When people eat little kids they get germs." 
Pause...
Joshua - "Jeremy... you have germs."
Jeremy - "You don't have knee caps."

Preschool seems to be shaping this little rule follower's perspective quite a bit. Everyone receives lessons in what they are doing wrong, there was even a very long informative lesson for Jeremy about boys and girls and the parts that make them different.

Essentially a nearly 4 year old in preschool is the equivilaint of a constantly running PSA commercial.

So for those of you with your fingers in your mouth right now, stop that.

You'll get germs.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Southern Breakfast Casserole & Poppy Seed Drop Biscuits

While digging through the recipes this week to decide what I wanted to make out of Nanny's vast collection of half written recipes on old library cards, something occurred to me. 

Our generation put their noses up at convenience ingredients simply because it's all we've ever know. 

We grew up with Bisquick, cake mixes galore, and as many variates of milk as you could shake a stick at. 

Our grandparents did have the same ridiculous luxuries, at least not the grandparents who grew up in the rural South.



Both of my grandparents grew up in farming families. My Nanny's family were share-croppers and Pop's dad was a small farmer. 

My grandfather had to milk the cow everyday before school, they both recall when electricity became a big thing in their area, and Nanny swore that if you picked less than your share of cotton a day you got the spanking of your life. 

Everything for them was from scratch in the 30's and 40's. Nothing came easy, you took a bath on Saturday to prepare for church on Sunday. 

According to Nanny the bath water was run once and it was from oldest to youngest, Nanny being the oldest got a better deal. While I recall Pop joking that you could stand a stick up in the water by the time it got to him (he was one the younger kids in his family, while Nanny was the oldest). 

Knowing that, it makes perfect sense as to why the 60's and 70's recipes were filled with convenience items. 

After years of living "from scratch" who on earth would want to go through that again? 

This is precisely why the Southern recipes you see coming from my mother's childhood all involve biscuit mix, pre-made this, boxed that. 

I sure as heck would think Betty Crocker and Jello brand anything were God sent if I had to pick cotton or milk a cow once in my little life. 

Southern Breakfast Casserole via @labride

It's almost comical to me that we stick our noses up at something that isn't organic, when just a few short decades ago it was all Southern farmers ate. 

If you didn't make it, you didn't eat it. 

I do however appreciate the convenience ingredients that turned "from scratch" into semi homemade, especially Saturday when I realized we were out of bread and had to quickly hit up the store before throwing my casserole into the oven. 

This casserole y'all, it's everything I ever wanted in a breakfast casserole. 

Simple.

Crowd pleasing. 

Super Southern. 

Southern Breakfast Casserole via @labride


Southern Breakfast Casserole

serves 6
Ingredients::
8 eggs, slightly beaten
6 slices bread, cubed (I used whole wheat)
1 lb sausage, cooked & crumbled (Smithfield make it with no preservatives now)
2 cups milk (2%)
1 cup sharp cheddar cheese, grated
1 tsp salt
1 tsp dry mustard (or 1 tbsp of prepared mustard)

Directions::
Mix together. Put in a 9 x 13 greased pan and refrigerate at least 12 hours. Bake 35 minutes at 350. 

Poppy Seed Drop Biscuits via @labride

Poppy Seed Drop Biscuits


makes 9
Ingredients::
1 cup sour cream
1 egg
2 cups of pancake mix (I used Pioneer Brand baking mix)

Directions::
Combine sour cream & egg. Add pancake mix. Drop onto parchment lined cookie sheet and sprinkle with poppy seeds. Bake at 350 for 12 minutes or until golden brown.

Poppy Seed Drop Biscuits via @labride

I laughed when trying to make this biscuit recipe, unlike many of Nanny's recipes this one actually has directions. Then again if it had a name on the recipe card it wouldn't really need many directions.

What to know what it was missing though?

A bake time and temperature.

To solve this problem I looked on the back of Jeremy's beloved box of Red Lobster biscuit mix (that I cringed at him buying in bulk from Sam's Club).

Cheater on this particular half given recipe?

Yes.

Pumpkin eat?

Not right now, but I'd like some.

I really hope that everyone in my family who's keeping up with the recipes (I promise it will be printed out in book form when I'm done) gets a good laugh from the enormous pile of half written recipes and now understands what took me to long to get this going.

I have seriously sat on this cookbook idea for four year, I even started it once or twice.

Just typing it up wasn't going to do it though, everyone would be just as confused as I am every time I pulled out a card with no directions.

So that's why I'm taking the cook it all myself and photograph it road, it'll make a prettier book with the pictures and the recipes will be complete.

Oh these Southern women and their lack of recipes, they all cook from their heads.

Don't forget to enter our current giveaways for your chance to win $350 Paypal Cash Black Friday Giveaway or our 2 night getaway to Riverside Farms in Vermont! 

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Meal Pinning Monday - the link up your Thanksgiving recipes edition

Let's be honest for a second.

I have no idea what I'm cooking this week!

Meal Pinning Monday

[What is Meal Pinning Monday?]
MPM is how I meal plan for our little family. I once spent a lot of time searching the web and my recipe books hunting for new recipes and ideas for what to cook every week. Then, Pinterest came along and made meal planning much easier for me. Every weekend I look over what I have pinned the prior week and decide what I would like to cook and make my grocery list from these recipes. MPM came about as a way to share what I am cooking, and to also see what others are cooking every week to hopefully get even more dinner ideas from other bloggers. If you don't pin your recipes feel free to just share what you are cooking.

I know my sister wants me to make apple pie, as we're making all of these recipes, but as far as regular meals go... I have the slightest idea.

I know some good ole Johnny's Pizza is in order with our time in North Louisiana for sure though. Wednesday Jeremy wants us to have out Appetizer Night like we typically do on Christmas Eve, so that will be filled with cream cheese covered in pepper jelly and grape jelly meatballs.

Speaking of the meatballs, I have no idea how that recipe hasn't been posted yet.

So how about today, with it being Thanksgiving crazy cooking week, everyone share their favorite recipes.

You can link up your menu in a post, or just link up actual recipes.

So let's get this going and I'll start by sharing mine!


Don't forget to enter our current giveaways for your chance to win $350 Paypal Cash Black Friday Giveaway or our 2 night getaway to Riverside Farms in Vermont! 

Friday, November 22, 2013

It's the Last Day Before Thanksgiving Break!

This is about the happiest of happy Friday's ever.

We haven't had a single break, I've only taken one personal day, and I'm well over due for some time not being at work.

So yay for Friday!


1. It occurred to me this week that my IG feed is mainly food. I can't help it, it's all I think about. Last Friday Jeremy wanted to have a date night in and grilled ribeyes, that's my kind of date night.

2. I started decorating for Christmas this past weekend. This door is what happens after moving so many times, and downsizing twice. All the ornaments that once graced a live tree every year are now strung on ribbon as garland - this girl hasn't had room for a live tree for 3 Christmas' in a row. Depressing right? Not to mention I was so sad that Jeremy was leaving the last year in Monroe and I had to stay there for 6 months that I didn't decorate at all that year. So technically this makes 4 years.

I'm happy with my little country themed Christmas this year, with the cute little pine cone tree. I almost like the pine cone tree better than the other decoration... and may have taken down my mini tree to replace it with the pine cone tree this morning.

3. I teamed up with some awesome bloggers to cohost a $350 Paypal cash Black Friday Giveaway, you totally need to enter!

4. This is one of my favorite salads on earth to take to work with me. I've been eating it all week long, there is just something about feta and dried cranberries that are to die for. Here's what's in it: feta, dried cranberries, sunflower seeds, cucumber, carrots, chicken, and I top it with my favorite salad dressing. 

5. More food I know, we had this for dinner Wednesday night and it's been a favorite for ages. I even shared it on the blog once. It's Korean Chicken and Rice Bowls with Cucumber Slaw.

I'm a little food heavy this week, but I guess it fits my mood. Nothing all that interesting has happened, just food lol!

Don't forget to enter for your chance to win a getaway to the wonderful Riverside Farm in Vermont! 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Our Thanksgiving Menu Staples

Every year there are a few things we can't help but make, and when I say we I mean my mother and I.

Granted Mom makes the main meats, I'm sure I'll be left in charge of those in years to come. Together though, we serve up all of our favorite sides.

After mentioning a few new additions to Jeremy though I was warned to leave Thanksgiving alone.

I'm allowed to play the day before when we have our Appetizer Night, but I've definitely been informed to keep the recipe inventiveness to non-holiday-meals.

Let's get go ahead and get to the list of Thanksgiving family favorites!

It's a long list, so sit back and get your fingers ready to pin something new...

Paleo Pumpkin Pie



When I make this for holidays I tend to go with a traditional crust, this year I'm going all out with my Paleo crust. It's insanely tasty, and it doesn't hurt that their is no guilt involved with eating this cold out of the fridge the day after.

I admit, I'd had it for breakfast.

Continue to full recipe... 

Pumpkin Better Than... Cake



This is by far my favorite guilty dessert, I could sit in a dark closet and eat it until a daytime talk show had to do a segment to air-lift me out of the closet. 

It's easy, tasty, and when I made it for our Pastor's Appreciation Dinner I came home with a nearly empty pan. Everyone that eats it loves it, even the non pumpkin people. 



This is the potato dish my family lives by. 

I fear that if my mother ever made anything else my sister and father would stage a revolt. Last year I merely suggested we make mashed potatoes... they acted like I off and killed the family pet. 

They don't play when it comes to Hashbrown Casserole in our house. 



Of the recipes my mother makes, this is the one I'd had a fit if she ever quit making it. 

We've experimented with it over the years and this is by far how I prefer it to be made. The sweet potato is creamy, and the topping is so divine I've never been able to decide if it's a side of dessert. Like the Pumpkin Pie though, I eat it for breakfast the day after. 

Little known recipe fact, this originated from a recipe she got at the World's Fair in the 1970's. 


Nola Style Black Ham



I'm not a huge ham eater, but when Jeremy told me he needed to bring a ham to work this week I nearly fainted at the thought of eating this pretty little meat dish the week before Thanksgiving.

Then he came back and said he didn't need me to make it.

I may have cried over having to wait another week for my ham.

Oh this ham y'all!

Pickapeppa Sauce is what make it for me, then again Pickapeppa Sauce over cream cheese does it for me too. I'f you've ever eaten at Mother's in New Orleans you will recognize the flavor a bit, it's the same type of recipe. Although I'd die for their recipe! 

Continue to full recipe...

Perfect Yeast Rolls



Yeast rolls with butter and  rosemary, need I say more? 



I actually make this often, and whipped up a batch last night. 

If you're a lemon lover like my mother and I, this is for you. 



I hate to be Southern and admit this, but I just don't like cornbread stuffing. 

My step-mother-in-law makes a delicious cornbread and summer squash stuffing, but that's the only cornbread stuffing you'll ever get in me. 

I'm more for whole wheat bread and sausage with possibly mushrooms. 

Not technically traditional. 

But good. 


So far I've shared every holiday recipe of our's that I've blogged, and it's quite a list.

What are some of your favorite holiday recipes? 

Don't forget to enter to win $350 in Paypal cash for our Black Friday Shopping Spree or an Unplugged Getaway to Riverside Farm in Vermont! 


Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Old Fashion Chocolate Pie | My Grandmother's Recipes

I'm a week behind on my Nanny's recipes, but I did make a super old recipe from my great grandmother on my father's side of the family. 

Meet the best Chocolate Pie you ever did eat. 

Old Fashion Chocolate Pie | via @labride

It actually took me two tries to get this recipe just right.

I made this all the time in college, but without making it for 6 years I completely forgot the method.

You might think, "Look at the recipe," but if you have grandmother's like I was blessed with you know not all recipes come with directions, and not all of them come with accurate measurements.

This particular one... has neither.

Old Fashion Chocolate Pie | via @labride

 We're talking a coffee cup of this, a spoon of that. Bake until done.

The first of these I made I just tossed it all into the crust think that is what I had done years ago.

Turns out that wasn't it at all.

Second round turned out perfect though, just like I remember it.

Old Fashion Chocolate Pie | via @labride

What is up with not writing directions on anything? Lord help me these recipes will be the death of me. I have no less than a handful of library cards with ingredients on them.

No directions.

No name.

Hence why my Nanny never had a recipe for her bread pudding, the best bread pudding I have had in my life.

Cooking from memory is for the birds, I like documenting things too much.

My memory is awful.

Old Fashion Chocolate Pie | via @labride

old fashion chocolate pie


Ingredients::
1 pie crust
1 cup of evaporated milk
3 tbsp flour
3 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1 cup sugar
3 eggs, separated
2 tsp vanilla extract

Directions::
Preheat oven to 350. Bake pie crust according to directions. In a sauce pan combine milk, flour, cocoa powder, sugar, 3 egg yolks, and vanilla. Turn the pan on after ingredients are in it and set the temperature to medium. Whisk constantly until it begins to bubble and then reduce heat to simmer, cooking until thickened like pudding. When the chocolate filling and pie crust are cooked, place the chocolate filling in the crust and allow to cool a room temperature. When cooled, preheat oven to 400, and beat egg whites in a large bowl with a hand mixer on high until firm peaks form. Spoon meringue over the chocolate filling with a spatula, being sure to touch the edges of the pie to prevent the meringue from shrinking. Bake in a 400 degree oven for 5-8 minutes until meringue is browned. Allow to cool and serve.

Old Fashion Chocolate Pie | via @labride

Depending on my mood I either use a store bought crust or make my own. I prefer Pioneer Woman's perfect pie crust, and make it with whole wheat flour, but for this I would use white flour.

Other recipes I've seen for similar pies over the years call for a double boiler and adding cream of tarter to the whites.

Old Southern women in the 1950's and 60's weren't bothering with any fancy things, and you really don't need them.

There is no need to temper the eggs in this, just keep stirring and start at a low heat.

I've also never used a copper bowl, or cream of tarter to make meringue; and I've never had an issue with it turning out right.

I wish y'all could see the original recipe, as exact as baking is supposed to be it always amazes me that this ever came out right for Granny Cater and her not exactly exact measurements.

Old Fashion Chocolate Pie | via @labride


Monday, November 18, 2013

Black Friday Shopping Spree Giveaway


I'm so excited to bring you the Black Friday Shopping Spree Giveaway today!  I'm teaming up with a group of my favorite bloggers to give one lucky reader $350 Paypal cash on Black Friday...how's that for a shopping spree?

Meet your hosts!

Leslie - Lamberts Lately


I am a wife to Noah and a mommy to Emma Ramey.  I blog at Lamberts Lately about life, family, beautiful things, and anything home.  When I'm not blogging, I love Alabama football, a great dinner, and time with family.

Blog  |  Facebook  |  Pinterest  |  Twitter  |  Instagram
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Amy - Total Tippins Takeover



I'm Amy and I blog over at Total Tippins Takeover. I write about my faith, our family, and life with three little girls...plus a little monogramming, reality tv, and crafting thrown in the mix, too!

Blog  |  Pinterest  |  Twitter  |  Instagram
_________________________________________________

Megan - In This Wonderful Life


I am a Lifestyle Blogger over at In This Wonderful Life. I love journaling life, motherhood with twins and the most random thoughts of my day!

Blog  |  Facebook  |  Pinterest  |  Twitter  |  Instagram
_________________________________________________

Lindsay - Baby Mama Drama


I'm Lindsay! Wife to Adam and Mama to Presley--both who I have diagnosed as worlds biggest Drama Queens. Surviving the "Terrible Two's" will be lifes biggest accomplishment--I'm sure of it!

Blog  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Instagram
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Lindsey - Blessings, Miracles, and Thoughts in Between


Hi, I'm Lindsey! Late 20s wife to Alex and financial advisor turned stay at home mom to miracle babies Kate and Will, both bone marrow transplant survivors. I am a follower of Christ, infertility survivor, book nerd, and advocate for bone marrow transplant donation!

Blog  |  Facebook  |  Pinterest  |  Twitter  |  Instagram
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Shannon - Life After I Dew


Thirty{ish} years young. Wife turned mama {times two}. Exceptional cook, wannabe crafter. Only child and it shows {sometimes}. I believe honesty is the best policy, reality TV is quality programming and wine is better from a box.

Blog  |  Facebook  |  Pinterest  |  Twitter  |  Instagram
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Emily - Louisiana Bride


I am a teacher by day and the food & lifestyle blogger behind Louisiana Bride by night. I love God, my hubby, our crazy dog Ellie; I can't finish a DIY project to save my life, I'm a foodie, and I consider Target to be my second home.

Blog  |  Facebook  |  Pinterest  |  Twitter  |  Instagram
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Lindsey - A Dollop of My Life


I am a wife & boy mom, and have a deep affection for all things Southern. I blog at A Dollop of My Life, where I chronicle the joys and chaos of running a home of all boys.

Blog  |  Facebook  |  Pinterest  |  Twitter  |  Instagram
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Brittany - Not So Newlyweds


I'm a wife, new mom, and teacher. On my blog, Not So Newlyweds, I share my thoughts on cooking, decorating, fashion, and the ups and downs of everyday real life!

Blog  |  Pinterest  |  Twitter  |  Instagram
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Jennifer - Life in the Green House


I blog at Life In The Green House about motherhood, what I'm cooking up in my kitchen, the many DIY projects I always manage to talk my husband into pulling out his power tools for, and family. I'm a fan of a great vacation, a good cup of coffee, laughter, and carbs.

Blog  |  Facebook  |  Pinterest  |  Twitter  |  Instagram
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The Chirping Moms


Courtney & Julie from The Chirping Moms are best friends that met at a neighborhood park. They started their friendship as neighbors, but now Courtney lives in New Jersey & Julie in DC. Together they share their adventures in motherhood along with great activities for kids, crafts, recipes and ideas for family travel.

Blog  |  Facebook  |  Pinterest  |  Twitter  |  Instagram

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Lauren - A Page Is Turned


I'm a wife to a fantastic husband and a teacher-turned-stay-at-home mama to two beautiful, busy boys. I'm a lover of books, cool weather, bundling up, cooking, spending time with my friends and family, and I blog about our day-to-day life at A Page Is Turned.

Blog  |  Twitter  |  Instagram
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Jennifer - Our Dream Come True


I am saved by His amazing grace, happily married to a hunk of a husband, and a new mommy to my precious Baker, who was born with Down Syndrome. I am daily blessed to be living my dream come true.

Blog  |  Facebook  |  Pinterest  |  Twitter  |  Instagram

_________________________________________________

Enter with the Giveaway Tools Widget below!

This giveaway will close at 9pm (CST) on the night before Thanksgiving, November 27th.  Once it closes, we will pick and contact the winner!



Good luck, and a great big thanks to everyone who enters!

Disclaimer:  No purchase necessary.  To enter, participants must use the Giveaway Tools widget above.  This giveaway is not affiliated with or endorsed by Paypal, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Bloglovin', Google, or Instagram.  Winner must have a Paypal account to receive winnings.  Winner must be at least 18 years old and a US resident to win.  Giveaway closes at 9pm CST on November 27th, 2013.  Winner will be contacted after the close of the giveaway on November 27th.  Once contacted via email, winner has 24 hours to claim their prize or another winner will be chosen.  Winner is responsible for any applicable taxes on winnings.  Any winning entry will be verified for completeness before winner is contacted.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Meal Pinning Monday

Have you figured out what your cooking this week?

If not, let me help with a few meal ideas from our little meal planning Monday.

Meal Pinning Monday


[What is Meal Pinning Monday?]
MPM is how I meal plan for our little family. I once spent a lot of time searching the web and my recipe books hunting for new recipes and ideas for what to cook every week. Then, Pinterest came along and made meal planning much easier for me. Every weekend I look over what I have pinned the prior week and decide what I would like to cook and make my grocery list from these recipes. MPM came about as a way to share what I am cooking, and to also see what others are cooking every week to hopefully get even more dinner ideas from other bloggers. If you don't pin your recipes feel free to just share what you are cooking.

Monday - Hamburger Steak with Haricot Verts


Tuesday - Buffalo Chicken Salad

Wednesday - Nanny's Breakfast Casserole & Poppyseed Drop Biscuits
(recipe next week)

Thursday - Korean Chicken & Rice Bowls

Friday - Leftovers

Saturday - Mini Corn Dog Muffins & Sweet Potato Fries

Sunday - Eating out

What are y'all making this week? Share it with us and link up! 

Don't forget to enter to win a 2 night getaway to Riverside Farm in Vermont!

Friday, November 15, 2013

The Longest Week Ever

You know what the worst week of any school year is... it's the week before the week before a holiday.

I think there were at least 3 Monday's this week.


1. I don't know if you knew this, but hyperbole is a country like Asia. I'm applying for a job at WalMart very soon. They'll be the only people to take me after this year.

Then again it's been a running joke that I'll have to be a WalMart greeter for 3 years.

2. The countdown to Thanksgiving break started November 1st, but this week it got real. I seriously think our school day was extended to 16 hours a day. It's taking forever!

3. Ellie has become extra cuddly. Jeremy blames it on her release for the captivity that Rudy enforces on dogs at our house. Now that he is off running free at my parents much larger abode and backyard, Ellie has been released from the pain of constant supervision and spends her days on the corner of the couch waiting to alert whoever is home that the mail ran. When we're home she likes to sit on us and be an old gassy dog.

7 year old gassy dachshund is not a smell I want to take in after a classroom full of kids.

I should invent in Glade.

4. Starbucks is having a buy one-get one coffee special for a few days, we took advantage of it with an impromptu coffee date. It obvious we have our best talks over coffee. Once we buy a house there will be a huge need for patio furniture next to a small outdoor fireplace, and cold weather. We bond well with coffee and cold weather.

My absolute first memory of this man is of him in the green stripped sweater he wore last night, he also had on a hoodie. I think the fact that we got to know each other during the winter months makes me love him more in sweaters. Weird? Yes. But the man looks good in a sweater.

I'd like to also add that the man offered to cook a steak for me as our Friday night date.

He knows me so well.

The only thing standing between me and being a total vegetarian is my deep love of Ribeye.

5. Sugarcane burning season will be the death of me.

Don't forget to enter to win our current giveaway with Riverside Farm in Vermont for a 2 night getaway!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Wedding Venue | Riverside Farm & Unplugged Getaways

I have a deep love for wedding venues, I tell my sister all the time that when she gets married I'm planning the whole thing. I would just love the chance to plan a big event again, honestly it was the most fun I've had.

While I love my own venue, I am always looking out for incredibly unique wedding venues.

Riverside Farms is one of those venues that I can't help but imagine just how I'd decorate every inch of the old farm.

It would be filled with burlap, lace, blue mason jars, and everything country shabby chic.


To continue reading this post and enter for your chance to win a 2 day Unplugged Getaway to this amazing location click the link below. 

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Wednesday, November 13, 2013

How to Make a Pine Cone Christmas Tree

This weekend I decided to knock out a few Christmas crafts, which started with one... and ended with burnt fingers after a marathon of a pine cone project. 

A few IG friends asked me to post a tutorial, so I thought I'd go ahead and photograph and it and share it here with y'all! 



On a Pine Cone Tree side note, I also finished my yarn wreath. Once spring hits I'll show y'all my spring changes to this wreath. 

I'm a sucker for a wreath that will last for several seasons. 

Or at least the one that I just took off my door from two years ago made that statement for me. 


Here's a close up of my bow that I was so proud of! 

I'll probably add out initial in green. 


 Now, back to the pine cone tree.

It's crazy easy, here's all you need:
-Several Pine Cones in several sizes (I used 2 Target bags full of small cones)
-a hot glue gun
-many, many hot glue sticks


 I had read several tutorials using a tomato cage, chicken wire, and every a foam core.

I just couldn't spend the money on those, especially seeing that the foam core was going to cause more work.

Turns out this is totally doable with just hot glue, you just need patience and a lot of time.

I started out by gathering my larger pine cones and making a circle in the floor about the size I wanted the base to be.

Then I took it apart and started glueing the cones together, I jabbed them together a bit then glued anything that was toughing.

Between layers I let it sit for 30 minutes to an hour, and I also let the first pine cone in every layer sit for a little while after being glued.

Yes, I used enough glue to need to wait a while before adding more.

It's crucial they are dried before moving on, it takes a lot of jamming them together to keep from having to cut them down in the beginning.

(Keep scrolling to get the rest of the directions)


Here's the final product in it's little home in our living room, the lighting just wasn't good enough to justify taking more pictures.


 As you get closer to the top you will need to start peeling the petals, or whatever it is you call the parts of a cone, so that they fit together better. I have a couple gaps that I will probably be filling in later.

Definitely sort through your cones so that the larger are on the bottom and the smaller are at the top. I had a easy go of this, the pine cones I took out of the neighbors yard were all pretty small.

Also, the closer you get to the top, make sure you're moving the pine cones slightly inward. Just enough to create a tree look.

I definitely had to step back a few times to make sure it wasn't tilted.


Other fun ways to do this would be to dip the cones in white paint, spray paint, use spray glitter, or glue on some pom pom balls. 


I seriously think it would be fun to do a full size tree version of this. 

The only issue would be storage, buying Hobby Lobby out of hot glue, and stealing enough pine cones. 


I was definitely warned by Jeremy that I should be happy that the cops weren't called.

I'm sorry, but what kind of a world do we live in that someone can't clean up your yard for you?


Here's a little up close shot so you can see the glue well.

I literally just glued anything that was touching and then glued it some more to make sure it didn't budge.

This actually turned out to be a lot more sturdy than I expected.

So tell me, have you ever made a faux Christmas tree? 
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