Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Back in Full Swing...Facing the Necessary Evils...


How I wish that I could be a super mom and boast proudly that I LIVE for HOUSEWORK!
...and that my house is certainly a destined representative for a Mr. Clean commercial!

I do keep a somewhat tidy home, if closets do not count....or my 9 year old son's bedroom! Do we EVEN need to go there???

I admit cleaning house provides instant gratification; the smell, sparkle, and shine....rewards of your efforts! And if my home could retain it's cleanliness just a little longer, I wouldn't begrudge it so! Just how fast, and in what quantities can dust bunnies, dirty dishes, and dirty laundry accumulate! It's astounding!!! The eighth wonder of the world!

There are many things I'd rather be doing....reading a good book, riding the roads in search of a new thrift or antique store to explore, playing in my flowers, or blogging! "smiles" ...or, and I am woman enough to admit it...taking an occasional NAP!

If I could be Jane, of the Jetsons, and have a ROSIE the sweet would that be! My dear husband, who does NOT assist with household duties, has instead offered that I hire outside help....A MAID! But I would only have to clean up, before she comes to clean up! How can that be any help at all?

I have created a tactic to prod my desire to clean a new decor accessory, even if it is small & inexpensive! You can't put a newbie in dirty territory! LOL! OR, a new cleaning product...I'm always eager to try something new, and with the new tantalizing fragrances of cleaning products..... How can you not possibly imagine that you are an exclusive spa, while the scents of AMETHYST MIST surround and provoke your senses?!?! Certainly makes laundry a little more bearable!

So, since I am feeling better, I must face this battle! Put on my big girl pants and go face the chores that await! I certainly wouldn't want to get fired and lose my good job! But then, I think it is secure! "smiles"

Monday, April 28, 2008

Under The Weather...

I took vitamins all winter, washed my hands until raw, and Lysol'ed everything in the house, as my family members suffered through several colds and viruses. It seemed my husband and son, who are generally quite healthy, caught every bug that was going around. I escaped unscathed and well!
Now it is Spring and in the upper 70's, and I get a terrible head cold! I've been either in the bed or on the couch since yesterday.

Being bored to tears, I'm not used to having this much "down time!!!" ...I decided to catch up on some reading. My MIL gave me the book, "The Forbidden," by Beverly Lewis, last weekend for my birthday. It is the sequel to, "The Parting," Book 1, of the Courtship of Nellie Fisher. I love Lewis' Amish series and this one was just as delightful as the others! I love the simplicity of the Amish, as she depicts them in her books. Their faithfulness is steadfast and encouraging! This series is a prime example of how the "world" seeps into our lives, and can disrupt and tests our beliefs. And, the importance of immersing oneself in the scripture. Something I need to be reminded of often!


This is an excerpt from "The Forbidden"....

"She rose to turn on the gas lamp and then picked up the Bible from the small table next to the bed, opening the book of Proverbs. Preacher Manny had said it was a good idea to make a point to reading a proverb each day. It'll change your life."

So, I thought I would rise to the challenge, to read a chapter a day from Proverbs! Warren Wiersbe, writes in "The Bible Exposition Commentary", that the words wise and wisdom are used 125 times in Proverbs and the aim is to help us aquire and apply God's wisdom to the decisions and activities of daily life. "After all, just because you're a believer and you walk by faith, it doesn't mean you put your mind on the shelf and stop thinking. We should love the Lord with our mind as well as with our hearts and souls." (Matthew 22:37).

I don't know about you, but I could use a little wisdom and guidance from above! "smiles"
I encourage you to join me over the next 31 days, reading a chapter in Proverbs each day!
Oh how we will be blessed as we make this journey!!! :)

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Saturday Evening Post of This & That....

Just posting a few odds & ends, to close out the week, so to speak...

Slim Pickings at the Yard Sales this Morning...
The yard sales are generally scarce at the end of the month, and the flea market looks like a ghost town, and yet, I go....
Just in search of that one treasure I might find to bring home!
This lone chair was my catch for the day. I found this at a church yard sale, marked $20, but they let me have it for $15!
It needs painting and reupholstering, but is structurally sound!
I think it will make a fine chair one day! "smiles"

Update on my Flowers...
I was able to plant most of my flowers last Saturday, and after a good dose of fertilizer and rain, they seem to be doing well! I can already see that some are growing and filling out!
Red Amaryllis >
"As Blue as the overhanging heaven..." -Percy Bysshe Shelley
I was determined to step out of my comfort zone and try new plants this year! I found this AGAPANTHUS, when we went to Florence, SC! It supposedly takes sun, heat, and dryness very well...perfect for me! And so we shall see! :)
It has one bloom on it, but look at the next picture!
I found this picture on the internet, and it is what my Agapanthus is to become! Oh, I can't wait!

Internet Picture of Agapanthus >

CREEPING Snapdragon >

Container Mixture >
The pink flower at the back of the pot is a Butterfly flower,Karalee Petite Pink, and has really taken off since planted!

Iris >

White Caladiums & Fern >


Josh Goes to the Prom...

Josh is a junior in high school, and this was his first prom!

I thought he looked right handsome! :)

Josh, his date, and friends...
Josh isn't that short, his date was just really tall. They all looked smashing!


Thank you, Ashley!!!

You may have noticed I now have MUSIC to accompany my blog! My daughter had enough patience to help me set my playlist up!

Thank you, Sweetie! :)

That sums up my week! I found a quote in the current Victoria magazine, that made me think of blogging when I read it.......

"One ought, every day at least, to hear a little song,
read a good poem, see a fine picture,
and, if it were possible,
to speak a few reasonable words."
-Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
~ Blessed Weekend to You all! ~

Friday, April 25, 2008

Show & Tell Friday...

It's Show & Tell Friday again, hosted by Kelli! This week I thought I would share some of my platters and trays, both a collecting weakness for me! I love to entertain and host family holiday gatherings, so these all come in very handy!

During one of the Tea-a-thon blogs, I posted the blue & white tea pot and creamer & sugar, that matched this platter! I inherited the set from my grandmother! The pattern is: Loch of Scotland, Royal Warwick, England.

The rooster platter is an oversized deviled egg plate, by Becky Denny. It of course, isn't old, but one of my favorite pieces!

This green dish is made in Italy! It is an older piece!

The coral and white platter is my very favorite, the colors even more vibrant in person! I found this at a Habitat for Humanity Thrift Store for $7.00! I didn't purchase it when I first saw it, thinking it was had been broken and repaired! But it "haunted me" for days! I was so glad when I returned to the store and it was still there! I've since decided the repair, which wasn't a very good one, only gives it character! "smiles"
It is marked: Lord & Taylor, Italy.

This picture appeared in a previous post, but I included it to feature the World stamped, hand forged silver tin tray! I just love the delicate carvings on these pieces! Remember when hand forged tin was really affordable (cheap!)??? But like everything else it seems, is becoming more collectible & more expensive!

Painted Tole Metal Trays...oh, how I love their sweetness! These are both green, and I am now on the hunt for a black one!

This vintage strawberry motif platter comes from my collection of Strawberry Fair, Johnson Bros. dishes!

I only have this one piece of this pattern; Cunningham & Pickett, Inc., Alliance, Ohio. My husband's grandmother had a small tureen of this, and passed it on to my FIL, and then SIL. It was always called the "collard pot," and at Thanksgiving and Christmas held just that, collards! My FIL, was an excellent cook! Although this plate didn't come from him, it fondly reminds of him and the wonderful meals he loved to serve!

This sweet metal tole tray doesn't have a home at the moment, although it has graced many walls and counters in my home beautifully!

I suppose you could say I am a "dish-a-holic!" Although I certainly know they do not, I sometimes feel that my dishes have a soul! "smiles" Have you ever considered the tales they could tell? The years of changing generations. Stories of good times; holiday gatherings, parties, weddings... Holding meals meant to encourage and cheer the sick. And unfortunately the sad times; meals after a funeral. Or a once loved dish, rescued from a yard sale or thrift store, adopted to enter into a new chapter of it's life! :)


~Wishing everyone Blessings for the weekend! Rhonda

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

"Tag...You're It"....FAITH

I have been tagged by Jaderocks at Country Love!(

She is a great friend with a really neat, unique blog! ... so pay her a visit! ...and our husbands share a common interest...Muscle Cars/Hot Rods! :)

My Challenge:

Life's Motto In Six Words..

About a week ago, Rue tagged me with a similar challenge and at the time, I just couldn't think of anything to share. But today, as I was commenting to Rue about her "Farmhouse Situation," came to me!

"It'll all work out....have FAITH!"

I'm a firm believer in FAITH, although it is not always an easy thing to have...or DO, to HAVE faith! Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., said, "The great act of faith, is when a man decides he is not God!"

Faith of a Mustard Seed

When the motto came to me, I immediately thought of the passage from Matthew 17:19-20, about faith. "...For truly I tell you, if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there, and it will move,' and nothing will be impossible for you." Our God is an awesome God! A mustard seed is such a tiny little seed, yet can grow into a very large tree. Having just a little faith can have incredible results! And does having faith mean that my prayers are always answered the way I would like, or that things go according to MY plan? Certainly not! But, I have FAITH that God knows all things, including what is best for us! ...and He will answer accordingly! I have faith that when He says No, or Not right now, He does it out of love, and for reasons we may not comprehend! ....It Will All Work Out! ....HIS WILL always does!

A few of my other favorite verses of FAITH are: Matthew 8:26, 1 Peter 1:7, Romans 10:17, 2 Cor. 5 :7, James 1:6-8
& Hebrews 11:1 (Faith gives us HOPE)!

I'm off to try to find 5 more people to TAG! I'm new to blogging, so it is hard to find ladies who have not already participated in this challenge, in some form or fashion. If you read this and have a "Six Word Motto," to share, please do so...and let me know, so that I can check it out!

What are some of your favorite verses of Faith? Please share....


Tuesday, April 22, 2008

YIPPPEEE, my First Blog Award!!!

THANK YOU, my sweet friend, Terrie, from
"Terrie's Lil' piece of Serenity" Blog for awarding me my
FIRST blogging Award!
I am so touched! I don't have an eloquent acceptance speech, LOL!
So I will simply say, I can't think of a better blogger to receive this award from, than Terrie! She is so encouraging and kind, and a true genuine Christian Lady, and I am so glad to call her friend! :)

Recipes for the Gracious Hospital-i-Tea Blog-a-Thon...

It has been several weeks since I've been able to participate in the Blog-a-Thon, and so, I am excited to share recipes for this week's challenge! I hope I have not added a recipe that has already been submitted, if so, please forgive me! "smiles"

Pimiento Cheese Sandwiches

~Paula Deen Recipe~

(Makes about 64 tea sandwiches)

2 - 8 oz. packages sharp cheddar cheese, grated

1 - 8 oz. package Colby Cheese, grated

1 1/4 cups mayonaise (I use Duke's)

1 - 7 oz. jar diced pimientos, drained

1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

Whole grain white bread

In a medium bowl, combine cheeses, mayonaise, pimientos, and pepper, stirring to combine well. Cover and chill until ready to serve. Spread a thin layer on pimiento cheese on half of bread slices. Top with remaining bread slices. Trim crusts from sandwiches and cut into quarters.


Quick & Easy Cheese Biscuits

~Aunt BoPeep's Recipe~

2 cups Shredded sharp cheddar cheese

1 cups butter melted

1 cup sour cream

2 cups self rising flour

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix together cheese and melted butter. Let sit about 2 minutes. Add sour cream, and mix well. Stir in flour. Spoon batter into greased mini muffins pan. Bake 18 to 22 minutes. Batter can be stored overnight in refridgerator.


Raisin Puffs

~Paula Deen Recipe~

(Makes 4-5 dozen)

2 cups raisins

3/4 cup water

1 1/2 cups sugar, plus more for rolling cookies

1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper. Place the raisins and 3 /4 cup water in a small saucepan and simmer gently until raisins have absorbed most of the water and are soft, about 5 minutes. Drain.

Using an electric mixer at low speed, cream the sugar, butter, and vanilla until thoroughly combined. Sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt. Stir in the dry ingredients and raisins into the butter mixture with a spoon. The batter will be crumbly.

Gather about a tablespoon of dough in your fingers and squeeze so dough holds together. Roll into a walnut-sized ball. Roll the balls in granulated sugar and place 1 1/2" apart on prepared cookies sheets. Bake for 11-14 minutes, until lightly browned and puffed. Transfer to wire racks to cool. Store in airtight tins, as these are quite fragile and shouldn't be jostled.


Symphony Brownies

~Paula Deen Recipes~

(These are so delicious, they are SINFUL! They will wow anyone who tastes them!!!)

1 - 17.6 oz. Package brownie mix with walnuts

3 - 6 oz. Symphony Candy Bars with almonds & toffee chips (Super-sized bar)

Preheat oven according to box directions...

Prepare the brownie mix according to package directions. Line a 13 x 9 pan or pyrex dish with foil and spray with cooking oil spray. Spoon half of the brownie batter and smooth with a spatula or the back of a spoon. Place the candy bars side by side on top of batter. Cover with remaining batter. Bake according to package directions. Let cool completely, then lift from the pan using edges of foil...makes it easier to cut into squares.

Note: To insure that it has completely cooled & settled, I usually make it the night before and then cut the next day.
For more recipes for Tea Time & other special occasions, I highly recommend the book, Paula Deen & Friends, Living It Up, Southern Style.
It is a delightful book that offers "grouped together meal choices" for showers, teen parties, luncheons, etc., from the appetizers to main course, to desserts!
It is an invaluable resource for entertaining!


Remember the strawberry basket I purchased from the yard sale last weekend for $1.25???

Here it is, cleaned up & ready for a "Casual Tea!"

Scroll down to Saturday's post, if you'd like to see it in it's orginal splendor!

I'm off to check out everyone else's blog-a-thon post! ~Rhonda

Monday, April 21, 2008

It's My Party & I'll Cry If I Want To....

Happy Birthday To Me, Happy Birthday To Me,
Happy Birthday To Rhonda,
Happy Birthday To ME!

Today I turned 40, and yes, I did cry....but, it was a good thing! "smiles" It was quite a day and the one birthday I will never forget! A lot of people dread those "milestone birthdays"...30, 40, 50, etc..... Not me, I was actually quite excited! So what, that it seems over night, things are starting to droop. My skin is taking on another texture, that I won't dare call wrinkles. And what isn't drooping or "textured," is filled out with a few extra pounds I seem to accumulate with each passing year! And when they talk about the "young kids," I'm not in that group any more, but officially a middle-aged adult! But, I feel like I'm finally at the age, I'm not trying to impress others for and with the wrong things, or stay hip and say all the right things! I'm now free to be me and appreciate the things we really should in my beautiful family....children who fill my heart and make my life what it is each day,....and my husband who loves me like I am....and if he doesn't, he keeps it to himself!

This is my 3rd Birthday!
My Birthday was off to a great start when my sweet husband went first thing that morning to Bojangles, and got us all chicken biscuits.

My daughter woke up at 8:00, to bake me a cake before church. The delicious cake was butter pecan with buttercream icing, and would melt in your mouth!

At 2:00, we met my Mom & Dad, at one of my favorite restaurants at the beach....Bluewater. It features the best deserts in town! In anticipation for my day at the beach, I had been spraying on tan out of a can for days! "smiles"


The festivities were over the for day...or so I thought!!!

We went to the bookstore and hung out a while. My husband was relaxing and all of the sudden said, well let's go....highly unlike him...he could spend hours in a bookstore!!! We load up and head to what I thought.... HOME! My son has turned into a Civil War buff, as we near a park, my husband pulls into it, and tells my son, he wants to show him a civil war cannon that used to be in the park. As we drive up, I see what looks like the back of my mom walking up to a shed, and then I see a car that looks just like me SIL's....and then these people are waving...but the park is crowded, so they are probably waving at a car behind us...and and then we pull into the parking space, and my husband says...."get out"...I open the door...and they all start singing HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!

And then....I CRIED!!!

My sister-in-law, Leighann, and dear friend, Jeanna threw me a SURPRISE 40th Birthday!

I found out later they had been planning it for months, and everyone knew about it....and I had absolutely no idea! I was touched beyond measure!!! I love to throw is one of the things I live for...LOL! It was really strange, when the tables were turned and I was the one the party was for! Leighann and Jeanna did a wonderful job and threw me an amazing party!!! They rounded everyone up, and coordinated every little detail, which was quite a feat considering they had to drag all the stuff to the park, on a very windy day! Several people brought food and the fellowship was great!

Thank You, Leighann & Jeanna!!!!!

......and, to all the others who chipped in!!!

My sister-in-law, Leighann, at the end of the table in the flowered jacket & my MIL in the pink shirt.

Jeanna, in the white top and shorts...

My Mom and Dad, on the end!

Kevin, my witty husband (in the light blue shirt), entertaining the guys with his jokes and tales! He is a great storyteller! :)


I received some WONDERFUL GIFTS!!!

These were some of the funnier ones....

This was my gift from my dad! It was actually an old metal coal bucket I loved, but the packaging...he went all out didn't he! LOL!!!

And what is a milestone birthday without a gag, Over the Hill gift....and so, this was mine from Leighann...oh she got me good, but I'm not above regifting...and she turns 40 next year! LOL!!!

Another gag gift from Leighann! My legs are so short, I have to slide the driver's seat all the way, as far as it will go, UP to the steering wheel....everyone picks on me and says I look like Garfield plastered to the windshield!


This was a wonderful Birthday, but I did not share it alone!

Edna Parker, from Indiana, turned 115 today! The oldest human being alive! She was born in 1893, and was widowed in 1939!

Happy Birthday, Edna!