Archive for the ‘Family’ Category
February 20th, 2017
February 15th, 2017
I was so excited to have been able to surprise Marcel with a lunch out for Valentine’s Day that I actually won from a ‘give away’ on Instagram. How cool is that? I decided to participate on a whim, but I was glad that I did, because the restaurant, somewhere I’d never been turned out to be a huge WIN! The food was delicious and the service also great. I had a wonderful spinach and warm goat cheese salad with sun dried tomatoes and Marcel went for the club sandwich and french fries. We were both happy- and because it was a late lunch- dinner ended up being very light last night.
If you follow me on Instagram, then you know that last week we were covered in a blanket of snow & I spent part of the weekend enjoying the bitter cold temps and snow play. Yesterday and today- it’s more like Spring, with blue skies and plenty of sunshine. The snow has practically all melted, but I love the contrast and find joy in both, much to the surprise of many.
Even though I suggested he ‘not’ do anything for me for Valentine’s Day- as I believe every day is a day to show love, he still surprised me with some gorgeous deep red roses, that I admittedly love.
Our evening was far from exciting, but we did things our style- which meant lounging and watching our favorite TV shows. Tonight will be more of the same, while tomorrow…. well, lets just say it’s that time of the year. More on that tomorrow. As for now, it’s time to catch up on the latest episode of Bull.
February 3rd, 2017
TGIF!! I am so excited it’s weekend and I’m kicking it off by being ‘home alone’ tonight. My favorite guy is working, but that means I can curl up on the sofa with my favorite TV shows from earlier in the week that I’ve missed. Grey’s, Nashville, How to Get Away with Murder & Scandal. I love the time alone, plus we have a busy weekend on the horizon with friends. Tomorrow night we’ll spend the evening at friends, and Sunday we’ll go out to dinner with some other friends. Great times in the making!
Yesterday was our ‘lucky 13’ anniversary and I was greeted not only with coffee in bed, but also some gorgeous roses, plus a beautiful card. I’ll admit that I didn’t think he would remember, but he did, which made this girl smile big. Since we both had work to get done yesterday and he was working last night- we decided to skip going out for dinner, and instead grabbed a few things of our own personal interest and had that. Mine, was my occasional ‘once a month’ sushi treat. I had a friend ask why I didn’t make it myself, but I make pretty much everything and from scratch, so I think I’ll continue to enjoy this freshly made once in a while treat. Funny enough- I don’t care for rice. I don’t buy it- and while I’ll eat it if I’m somewhere and someone has rice as part of the meal- I never cook it, but I do love this sushi, including the rice. It isn’t my Gulf Coast favorites, but it will do.
How are you spending your weekend? I know it’s Super Bowl weekend, but I’m not a football fan, so no parties here. I do like a good get together though, so maybe it’s something to consider for next year.
In the meantime- I’m ready to kick back, relax- and get a dose of some of my favorite actors and actresses.
Whatever you find yourself doing this weekend, ENJOY!
February 2nd, 2017
I can’t believe it has almost been a week since I was on here last. The week has flown by- with last weekend spent in the company of a good friend exploring various inspirational foodie haunts, plus a little trip to the beach. One of our ‘stops’ during the day was the local camera store, because she needed to get some passport photos made so she could renew her ‘almost’ expired passport.
I saw this ad in the store and I couldn’t help but pause and soak up not only the image, but also the text and what it means.
I do believe that what we focus on in our lives is what we not only see more of, but also what we manifest. Yes, life is full of ups and downs- but when I think of some of lifes’ darkest moments in my life- I also can find the beauty in them. I would prefer that life had no sadness or tragedy, but to be able to find something beautiful in the midst of pain is important, at least to me.
I was reading an article earlier today talking about life defining moments, and how some of them are moments that have brought us the deepest sorrow. I was reminded of a moment where I felt a deep amount of pain and in the beginning wasn’t quite sure how I would make it through- as it was something I’d never experienced before.
Rather than becoming angry and bitter- as it would have been easy to do- I allowed myself to feel what I was feeling, also made a few choices that I wasn’t extremely proud of, as a knee-jerk reaction to the pain, but on the whole- I took the time to grieve, then I wanted to be aware of what the pain could teach me, and what lessons I could take away from the entire situation.
Through that- I learned SO much. It was one of lifes’ biggest gifts and because of the experience, I was able to carry what I learned with me- so that I can apply it to life as needed. That embodies the above photo- and the …. beauty of life.
We are all different. It seems now more than ever there is a focus on how different we really are, but at the core- it really isn’t us versus them- we are all very much the same. We all bleed, we all have hopes- dreams- fears- uncertainties. We all love- believe in something- laugh- sleep- and the list goes on. The truth is- we are far more alike than we are different.
Fill in the blank- I am.. ______ As for me- I believe the one word I’ll put above all others for what I AM- LOVE. I am LOVE. Don’t you want to join me in striving to be love in all that we do? While one person doesn’t have the power to change the world- we do have the power to change ourselves- to be a shining light- the proverbial North Star in the night sky- to leave a ripple of love, respect, inspiration and positivity so large that it creates a tidal wave of the aforementioned and brings something beautiful and positive to every one in it’s path.
That, my friends is how beautiful things happen. Love!
January 27th, 2017
It’s weekend and I am SO glad. Mostly because I get to spend some girlfriend time with one of my dear friends, plus there has been such a heavy fog of seriousness hanging in the air- that I’m ready for some light-hearted fun with people I love.
So weather permitting- tomorrow will include a trip to the beach, but also some laughter- shopping and good eats. I’ve got mom’s taco soup recipe all prepped and ready to go in the Crock Pot tomorrow morning with the timer on- Plus, I’ll make diddy’s cornbread when I get home. I’ll mix all the dry ingredients in the morning- and all I’ll have to do when we get home is mix it up and put it in the cast iron skillet to bake.
One thing that we never need to forget- is to smile. It doesn’t matter what’s going on in the world, no one can steal our light unless we allow it to happen. Smiles are free, plus they can work miracles without us even realizing.
December 15th, 2016
It has been a hustle and bustle kind of week. I’d love to say that I’ve got everything together- have the tree up and it’s looking festive in here, but I’d be lying. We have the tree, but it’s yet to be brought in and decorated. We DO have the lights and decorations out- so that’s a step in the right direction, but I’ve been swamped with work this week. I’m grateful- oh so grateful, but I’ve been baking my heart out- with more in the works.
Thankfully, I’m a little ahead of schedule after running behind schedule earlier in the week, so that is a huge plus! Tonight I took some time and finally cracked open my Christmas with Southern Living book that I’d ordered but not taken the time to look at yet.
I’ve also been itching for the Bake from Scratch holiday issue, so was able to browse it a little as well. Both are favorites, but I’m one of those people who will leave a cookbook sitting for months if I can’t stop and fully savor each and every page.
I know it may sound silly, but it’s true. There’s something almost ritualistic about it. Pure enjoyment and focused on the season at hand.
I’ve seen several recipes that I want to make for our own holiday table, including my grandmas praline recipe that I improved a couple of years ago, plus divinity. My dearest great aunt sent me a gallon of pecans that she’s picked up from her orchard and shelled. It was an amazing gift, and something that makes me want to create something special with the fresh pecans that I know were sent with much love.
I want whatever I make with some of them to be made with love and deliberation, but also something that the flavor of the pecans will shine through.
What would you suggest? I’ll be sure to share what I decide to make, but as for now- I’ve got some relaxing to do as tomorrow a villiage of gingerbread men await my services.
December 10th, 2016
Have you started your Christmas baking yet? Since baking is my business and I’ve been blessed with an abundance of holiday orders; I officially started today. I spent most of the day working on 6 batches of my famous Fleur de Sel caramels, and from there went on to make two batches of gingerbread dough. *When wanting to double a recipe- measure it out and mix separately as with baking doubling doesn’t always work effectively.* From there- I mixed the dry ingredients for some cupcakes I’ll be baking up tomorrow for an order on Monday- Chocolate orange. You can’t go wrong with that flavor now can you?
Later this week I’ll be making dog treats for some very lucky canines, plus more cookies, more caramels and a few cakes. Then I’ll try to squeeze in a little personal baking to share with people I love, which I hope (fingers crossed) to include divinity and pralines- something we always had at Christmas when I was growing up.
What is your ‘must have’ on your holiday table.
November 29th, 2016
Santa is coming! How many of you had your Christmas trees up before Thanksgiving? As much as I would have liked to, we still haven’t decided what type of tree we will have. The fact that it will be a real Christmas tree is a no-brainer for us, but will we go for the larger one, or a smaller one that will fit on a table top? That remains to be seen. If I had to choose today, it would definitely be a smaller version, simply because it is easier, not to mention it doesn’t take up too much space, plus I don’t have to be concerned with JJ and Mister M. having a ‘cat fight’ under the tree. Decisions, decisions!
Much more important than the tree is the people we will be spending our Christmas with. That is also still in the works, with plans unfolding, but I’m looking forward to having a time of fun and festivities with friends, whom I’ve adopted as my family here.
What about your favorite holiday traditions? Do you have any? I’d love to hear about them. When I was growing up we would always go look at Christmas lights. My brother and I would be in our pj’s early and off we would go as a family- in the car to drive through areas and look at the Christmas lights on display. To this day- it’s still one of my favorite traditions. I actually think that this year we’ll also be doing it with friends here. Something else exciting to look forward to.
What do you look forward to during the holiday season?
November 24th, 2016
Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I hope that you are all enjoying time with those you love and cherish, taking time to soak up the memories in the making, plus to put some focus on the reason behind this day- being grateful, coming together and choosing peace.
This year is a bit bittersweet for me as I’m not home with my family and friends for the holiday. It’s the blessing and also the downside of having two places to call home, but I miss being there today. My parents are having dinner at my brothers new home for the first time. It’s one of those first that I am missing out on, but it isn’t possible or even realistic to be everywhere I ‘want’ to be. Marcel is working tonight, which means I’ll be curling up with some of my favorite television shows on Hulu.
Tomorrow, I’ll roast a pumpkin and get things in order for Sunday’s festivites. I’ll mix up the butter rolls so they can sit in the fridge overnight and I can roll them the morning of the festivities. There will only be a few of us, but I have no doubt in my mind that this Friendsgiving will be a great one.
Enjoy your family or friend time.
August 24th, 2016
My brother is in the process of building a new home, so I haven’t talked to him as often as I usually do. The other day I gave him a call, and while he was giving me an update he started talking about vapor mitigation and he lost me. I interrupted him in the midst of a technical explanation that sounded ‘Greek’ to me, so that I could have him explain it more in terms that his dear sister would understand. Granted, he laughed at the idea of me not having knowledge of something and him actually having to explain it to ‘big sis’, but he did explain it well enough that I got the gist of what he was trying to explain.
Since I’ve never built a home from the ground up- or had one built, I really didn’t know that sometimes you need to have things tested for specific sorts of toxic gases. I asked a lot of questions, some of which he had answers to and some he didn’t. When I could tell he was getting frustrated at my endless questions, I gave it a rest and asked him something much less time consuming to answer: What color scheme are you using in the house? He did send me some photos and I’ll admit it made me homesick and wishing I could be there to help when they get ready to move in, plus to help decorate and do little things that need to be done along the way. It’s one of the many things I miss out on by not living nearby. Thank goodness for technology which allows me not only to talk to my family and friends regularly, but also allows me to easily look up information about subjects that I have no knowledge about.