Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The evolution of a bean

I have been fascinated this spring with the beans in the garden.  I don't think I have ever just watched them grow.  And these beans grow very quickly.  The other morning I was outside talking to the plants......ummm  looking over the garden and saw sugar snap peas in various stages of growth.  Why yes...I did snap pictures of them. want to see also?   Here goes!!

What beautiful flowers.  I could have a vase of them in my home anytime.  Of course,  then I wouldn't have peas.

A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest--

See the tip coming out of the flower?  That is the pea beginning to form inside.  Come on little pea,  grow, grow.
Here you see the pea formed and still protected by the flower.  I know there is an analogy in there somewhere.
The flower has faded,  the leaves are taking over. 

Here at last,  the PEA!  One is almost ready to pick, the other needs a couple of days.  \

My mom and I were talking the other day,  and I believe farmers could be the most content people on earth.  If we go back to Genesis,  this is what God intended for us from the beginning.  Now I am not saying all people should be farmers cause that's what God wants.  But I do find the more I am in the garden,  then more I dwell on God's Amazingness (my word).  There is no one like Him and is works are perfect.

  Ps 103:22  Bless the LORD, all his works, in all places of his dominion. Bless the LORD, O my soul!

If your soul is feeling dry,  if you are not finding ways to Praise and Extol our God,  go out in His creation and worship Him.  Find one flower,  one cloud,  one sunset or sunrise,  one bird,  one tree,  one little animal (not a snake,  difficult for me to even look at one!!),  and then look on the face of one child.  You can't help it.  They are God's creation and He deserves our praise. 


rhanks for reading,


Monday, May 30, 2011


to this guy  (DAD!) and many many others who have given their lives and their service in the name of Liberty for us and our posterity.  We remember you and thank you!!!

"We on this continent should never forget that men first crossed the Atlantic not to find soil for their ploughs but to secure liberty for their souls." ~Robert J. McCracken

And that is true liberty.  Knowing Christ as King and Saviour.  Have a wonderful Memorial Day and remember....
thanks for reading,


Recently we had a throw down kind of a party.  We celebrated Kevin's graduation from high school...a major feat!!  (not really,  we knew he would).  We tossed around ideas of going out to ea,t but with 12 kids 15 and under between the 3 of us (mine, sisters, brothers)  we called ourselves officially insane quickly scratched that idea. 

Then we thought of little squiggly pinchy red guys....CRAWFISH!   Now my husband, eldest daughter and son can eat them some crawfish and they were all over this.

We set the date,  ordered the little pinchers ( along with some other scavengers like shrimp!) and got it all ready.  Here is a look at how Arkansans do a Crawfish Boil!!

Set up the boilers.  Get the water (and the sweat!) rolling!

Have some kids hanging around asking if it's ready yet...

Pour some of this in the water to make your food sweat-running-nose-dripping-fingers-burning  spicy....

Prepare the elegant table cloths and utensils...

Bring out the crawfish and let the children pick them up and scare each other and carry them all over the yard..(truth here,  the crawfish were already cooked, only way we could find them on a HOLIDAY weekend.  So they were NOT as fun to play with cause no pinchers were working.  Note to self,  order crawfish for a holiday weekend VERY EARLY!!)

While 2 men work,  everyone else runs around looking busy but really just looking for a chair to sit in and wait on the food.

When the food is finished,  place it delicately on each plate and serve with a white towel over your arm.  OR NOT!!

With Classical Cajun music blaring in the background,  CHOW DOWN.  In this family there are no piggies waiting on one another.  You just grab and pull. 

Give the kids a little to make them feel a part of it all and then hide them under the table to eat.

After eating 1/5 of the crawfish,  kindly decide to teach the rest how you eat them so quickly.

 Grab the head and tail,  pull apart,  place tale in mouth and rip meat off,  turn head and suck out brains and juice,  throw down on the table and grab another.  Should only take a few second per crawfish.

Make sure honored guest has some food..after all..we wouldn't be doing this except for his graduating from high school.  Thanks KEV!!

 After stuffing yourself with crawfish, potatoes, corn, sausage, and shrimp,  play with your food.

Scare the babies by placing a hollowed out crawfish on your finger and telling them it will bite them.

Watch as said babies don't  believe you and shows you her muscles!!!

Sit back and realize that all those shells are YOUR leftovers and that perhaps you are a glutton.  Then remember it only happens once in a few years,  it is a fish (right?) and the other stuff is veggies (well starch, but who's counting the carbs). 

And THAT is how a Crawfish Boil is done RIGHT in Arkansas.  I realize people from Louisiana may see this as a small scale sissy kindof operation,  but we beggars can't be choosy and take what we can.  As a side note,  I PERSONALLY do not like crawfish or shrimp,  but I LOVE everything else about the boil...the music,  the smells, the laid back atmosphere full of the outdoors, visiting, laughing,  eating,  and family and friends.  

thanks for reading,


Thursday, May 26, 2011

Grabbing passing Dogs!!

“Whoever meddles in a quarrel not his own is like one who takes a passing dog by the ears.”  Proverbs 17:17

This is actually from my mom's blog.  It is down right now but I wanted to share it.  I think my kids and I will be going over this today.  We seem to have a lot of "passing dog's" in our house, and a lot of ear grabbers.  Not good I'd say.  

Once we were visiting someone very dear to us. My husband’s mom and dad were there also, and we entered into a conversation about television. We didn’t have one, for obvious reasons to us, and we were discussing it with Mom. She felt that we were withholding a real pleasure from the children.[After all, she was their grandmother!] Being the feisty sort of family that my husband’s side is, they were both quite intense in their defense, both with pretty good arguments.

Until another family member entered the fray it was promising to end on a friendly note, anyway. But the moment the third person, who had heard very little of the conversation, threw his opinion into it, things got red hot. So hot, in fact, that my husband gathered up his little crew and left. On the way out, Dad, always the peacemaker, said, “You are right, you know.”

Sweet Dad!!

But that didn’t do anything to quiet the storm. Someone had grabbed a passing dog by the ears!  That part of the verse has a couple of implications. First, the dog was “passing by.” He was likely an unknown or stray dog. My husband’s argument with his mom was unknown by the third party. He had no idea how the conversation had begun or continued. It was just “passing by” his ears.

Second, the dog was grabbed in a very vulnerable spot. This person may as well have grabbed my husband by the ears. Not having a television at the time was a real conviction on our part,not just a preference. The comments hurt!

Third, the person who grabbed that dog by the ears most likely got bitten.  My husband bit hard and we left. [Yes, he admits that his response may have been a little harsh. This was many years ago.] I can joyfully say that all is well, our relationship with this person is secure, and we have all but forgotten it. [Of course I haven’t forgotten it; I’m writing about it!]

The moral of the story?  Don’t grab a passing dog by the ears, and don’t meddle in a quarrel not your own!  You might get bitten, and the ending may not be as good as this one was.

As we mind our own business [in a good way!],


My mom has great devotional thoughts from her morning quiet times on her blogs.  Be sure and check her out.  It will bring your mind on to Christ,  which I need moment by moment!!

Also,  I wish I could post a picture of my grandaddy.  He was wonderful,  handsome, and great for our family.  I will try to find one and post sometime.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

One day as I went walking...

On Mother's Day my mother, sister, sil, sil's mother, friend, and myself went for a little walk.   We actually took a tour of homes in the historic Quawpaw District of Little Rock.  I had never taken one before and wasn't sure what to expect.  Our first home was very unique.  We kept exclaiming how fresh the paint was on the banisters and trim and how the owners must have spent a lot of time "sprucing"  up the old place.  Then we learned the house had just been renovated that year.  So I guess the paint job was new.  Here is the crew before going into the old/new house.

The pictures I took are of things I really liked from any of the 5 homes we toured.  I probably should have taken more,  but there were SOO many people going through these homes.  Where did these people come from?  Were there this many people interested in seeing other peoples houses?  How have I not known this was THE place to be on Mother's Day?   We met people we knew passing in the halls, looking through the cabinets (just joking,  I only opened 2 doors to see if they were closets or doorways,  both times closets.). 

This first picture is of an outdoor light fixture I would LOVE to have in my house. 

This next picture is of a curved transom stained glass.  It is original to the house.  Kindof adds a little something extra to the porch, doesn't it?

I LOVE this kind of table.  Someday, my boys are going to make one of these for me.  (HINT, HINT!!!!!)

When/if we do a kitchen renovation,  I want this as my back splash.  I absolutely LOVED these tiles.  And they are BLUE!!

In one home,  as you walked up the stairs,  this was facing you in the turn.  When you turned to finish walking up,  there was another larger area on the other side. Can't you just envision book cases,  cozy chairs and lamps,  a little wooden doll house,  and a box of blocks?  (I am wiping the drool off the keyboard now!)

We have a pitiful attempt at a water feature in our front yard.  A project to be tackled SOON!!  This little waterfall and pond was just what my mind sees in my yard.  So I took LOTS of pictures to have as inspiration.  I think I may be  the only  one inspired by it  around here.


What can I say about THIS?

Yes,  that is a chair,  with fabric somehow glued to a firm shell, well lit from within.  I wanted to sit on it so bad but we were being watched.  Who buys this kind of stuff anyway?  And NOOO, I don't love this.  I just had to show you. 

And that is the tour of my favorite things on the tour.  My most favorite thing was this...

the sweet women in my life who made the tour SOO much fun.  Thanks ladies!!!  I would go anywhere with you.

thanks for reading,


Look what we made last night!!


My sister had been telling me how wonderful this pesto pizza she made was.  And since I had "MAKE HOMEMADE PIZZA" on the menu,  I thought I would give it a try.  I LOVE pesto,  homemade bread, and fresh food from my garden.  This was going to be GREAT!

We had Kevin over yesterday...he saw all the school drama,  the chore drama,  the musical instrument drama,  and the clean up dinner drama.  I am sure he will NEVER get married and have children.  ANYWAY...he made the dough.  First time to  make pizza dough for him.  We work him around here,  no slackers except me in  THIS house. 

I am STILL getting used to having a camera.  So there are no before pics,  but here are our after-we-made-our-pizza pics. 

Before I forget, we used the pizza recipe found in the June Southern Living magazine.   There are some GREAT ideas and recipes here. 

Southern Living Magazine June Issue

Ultimate goodness.  Well, in taste that is.  Here is my boy absolutely cherishing each precious bite.  He even cherished one of my daughters pizzas as well.  I hope he cherishes his wife this much.  My thoughts go this route quite often.

Does anyone else watch their kids (some days!)  and think,  "I don't think I can save enough money to PAY someone to marry this child!!"  And then other days think,  "I don't think someone can pay ME enough to marry this child!!"  I think it may relate to the age.  We have one young lady,  one almost youth,  one in upper elementary and one in lower elementary.  The hormones RAGE at this house....and not just from me.

And you thought this was a post about cooking...

No wonder my kids think I am crazy!! 

thanks for reading,


Monday, May 23, 2011

Menu Monday..What IS for dinner?

I have lots of food at the house....but no good ideas.  Nothing sounds good because we are so busy it is difficult to figure out  logistics.  (Cool word put in here for my husband so he thinks I am really smart and listen well!!)

Here is what I am is only that...thoughts.  We will see if this actually works.

Mon.    Buy a rotisserie chicken from Walmart and fill tortillas with salad and whatnot form the fridge,  raw veggies with ranch,  fruit salad.  We have store bought cookies in the cabinet for dessert.  This must be taken with us to swimming as we have 3 hours of practice tonight. 

Tue.   Poor mans beef stroganoff in the crock pot.  Green beans and homemade rolls from yesterday.

Wed.  Baked talapia rolled  in some bread crumb stuff someone gave me,  Turkish rice,  some veggie from the freezer.

Thur.  I WANT HOMEMADE PIZZA.  I have  cheese, fresh basil,  tomatoes,  mushrooms,  and I am sure I can find something else to put on this.  Fresh salad from the garden.  And a jar of pesto..there, that sounds good!!

Fri.  Not sure if you have guessed this or not,  but we have breakfast every Friday night.  TRADITION!!  (sing like Tevye from fiddler on the roof!!)  I am not sure what we will have, but I know it will involve EGGS, (not from our chickens but hopefully in about 8 weeks!!),  sweet bread, and fruit.

Sat.  MOST LIKELY we will have a crawfish boil with all my family and Kevin who will have just graduated that afternoon.  It involves crawfish,  potatoes,  corn on the cob,  and sausage.  If you have never eaten at one of these,  it is an experience, let me tell you.  You need long tables,  lots of newspaper,  low cardboard boxes, cajun music,  and plenty of sweet tea and paper towels.  Clean up is a snap and laughter is abundant. 

Sun.  I think this day may be our join-the-church-at-Wendy's day.  After the busyness of the week,  I would enjoy it. 

Can't wait to see what other's are eating this week.  I hope to get some good ideas for next week.

thanks for reading,

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Treasure Hunt!

A little while back we took a trip to Branson.  Now I know what you're thinking.  Bright Lights, Big City,  Shows,  Rides.  And that is all there and we LOVE to do some of it.  But this time around it was for resting and being together. 

My eldest child and I went outlet shopping...something we both   We found there really weren't that many to be had and WHERE OH WHERE did Children's Place go??!!  We loved the new fashions at Ralph Lauren.  Here are a few of my favorites.

Anna Jersey Dress - Blue Label New Arrivals -
Zoe Striped Skirt - Blue Label Skirts -

Helene Silk Pintuck Dress - Blue Label Sale -

Jules Printed Silk Skirt - Blue Label Skirts -

I love blue and this collection was wonderful.   A little pricey but fun to see.

Meanwhile, back at the hotel....this was what was going on  ...

On our way out,  we decided to take a hike.  Literally.  We went to this park in the middle of the city that overlooks Lake Taneycomo.  As we were looking at the lake and the view, 

 we heard the kids talking way above us.  After a short hike up rock steps lined by flower, we came upon this..

It was the Owens Homestead right there in Branson.  Needless to say we had to go all over ther property looking at the different buidlings and structures.  Here are a few pics.

We could house some fine animals in this.  And this next is a picture of my future chicken coop.  Boys,  do you see how it's made?  Go to it!!

We wanted to move right in.  Well,  some of us did.  What a great find in the middle of a busy city. Can't you just imagine yourself walking this road? 

thanks for reading,