Saturday, September 29, 2012

Observing My Senses

For Today, September 29, 2012...

I am seeing...sunshine!  Wow, that's a bit of a change from most of this week, which has been overcast and cloudy everyday, even when it wasn't raining.  It's a welcome sight.

I am feeling...sad, because I know it must be hard for my aunt and my cousins to say goodbye to my uncle.  We know he's in a better place, but it's still rough on the ones left behind.

I am son tell me he loves me.  Those three words have just brightened my day more than the sunshine.

I am pumpkin spice breakfast - Eggo's and swirl bread.  It's sort of become a staple for me.

I am smelling...the smells of breakfast.  Toast, sausages, waffles, coffee.  I love those smells.

It just takes a moment to observe your surroundings.  Won't you join me?

Follow Friday Four Fill-In Fun

No matter what's going on in my life, I can't go a week without my Friday Four Fill-In post.  You can join Hilary at Feeling Beachie for some fill-ins too.  Only try to do them on Friday like everyone else.

1. when I was little I was called ___
When I was little I was called Sweet Pea by my mom.  Remember, from Popeye?

2. ___are my favorite candy
Chocolates are my favorite candy.  Hershey's, or Nestle's, or Reese's, or anything with chocolate will be just fine.

3. If I could have one magical power it would be______
If I could have one magical power it would be...none.  I like me just the way I am.  I don't need magic to improve on me. :-)

4. If I could go back to school it would be to become a _________
If I could go back to school it would be to become a teacher or an interior designer.  I love working with children, and I love decorating homes.  Either would be a great choice.

Five Question Friday

I realize I'm a day late with my Friday posts.  I wasn't in the mood to blog after posting about my uncle's passing.  I feel a bit better today, accepting I guess.  He's remembering all the things that he'd forgotten, and for that I'm thankful.

Okay, so here we go, a day late but still enthusiastic.

1. Do you prefer to drive to your vacation spot or fly?
As far as personal preferences go, I like to fly.  I don't have to worry about watching cars (or planes) around me, and I get to my destination faster than by car.  However, with the price of airline tickets being what they are, a family traveling together is better off going by car.  Even with soaring gas prices, it's cheaper to drive one's own car than pay to fly and then rent a car.

2. If you could live any where in the world, where would you go and why?
Here.  In Florida.  Where I love living.  Anywhere in the beautiful state of Florida is just fine with me.  It's got the weather I like, the sunshine I like, the trees and grass and flowers I like, the vacation spots I like, the style of living I like.  It's everything I like.

3. Should grown women wear leggings?
Oh great, a touchy subject.  Have you watched the show What Not To Wear?  I used to watch it daily, and while I may not agree with every fashion trend that's out there, I did agree with many of their basic rules.  One of those rules was, dress your age.  To dress like you're younger than you are makes you look just as old as if you dressed like an elderly person.  It emphasizes how old you really are when you try too hard to look too young.  Leggings may look cute on young girls, but I've yet to see a grown woman look attractive in them.

4. If you could change your name to any other name, would you? And what would it be?
I didn't used to like my name because it's uncommon, which meant it was easily forgotten or confused with similar names like Eileen or Irene.  Now, I like the fact that there aren't a lot of Arlene's out there.  What used to bother me before is what I like most about my name now.

5. What magazines to you have subscriptions to?
The only magazine I get and read is the Costco Connection, because it comes with my Costco membership. I'm not a big magazine reader.  I prefer a book.

Now it's your turn.  Visit Mama M at My Little Life and answer your Friday questions.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

RIP Dearest Uncle

After battling Alzheimer's disease the past few years, my dear uncle has said goodbye, his earthly journey completed.  He lived on this earth 89 years, and was married to my aunt (my mother's sister) for 61 years.  They were the most loving couple I've ever met.  He is survived by my aunt, his two daughters, his grandson, granddaughter, and great-grandson, in addition to a large extended family who loved him dearly.  Goodbye my dear uncle.  Your absence will be felt, and you will be sorely missed.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Chats on the Farmhouse Porch

It's a cloudy morning in my neck of the woods.  Good thing Patrice's porch is covered!  Pull up a chair, your favorite coffee, and let's have a chat on the porch at Everyday Ruralty.

1. Please tell me a fond autumn memory. Or tell me something interesting you're doing now that fall is here.
My fond autumn memories are all centered around Thanksgiving.  I used to have my husband's family over for Thanksgiving, and it would take me a couple of weeks to get the house and meal ready.  Last Thanksgiving I went to Orlando and spent Thanksgiving there with my children and no one else.  My daughter and I cooked the meal, we enjoyed eating and watching movies, and my youngest son dressed up in his older brother's costumes, which made us roar with laughter.  That's the happiest and best Thanksgiving on record.

2. What's your favorite kind of cheese?
Ah, cheese.  I like cheese.  Swiss cheese, cheddar cheese, mozzarella cheese, cream cheese...unfortunately, cheese doesn't like me.  I'm lactose intolerant.  The pain isn't worth the pleasure :(

3. Have you ever been in a wedding, other than your own (if applicable)?
Yes, years ago I was a bridesmaid in a wedding.  I was 16 years old.  Then I was maid of honor at my younger sister's wedding in 2002.  Her 10th anniversary is coming up :)

4. Did you ever do anything as a child to earn money? (Lemon aid stand, crafts, mother's helper, chores, etc.)
My uncle was the super for our building, and he'd buy used stoves and refrigerators to replace broken ones in the apartments.  He'd pay me $5 each to scrub them clean.

5. Do you wear a watch?
Only when I get dressed up, like for church.  I don't wear much jewelry on a regular basis.  As a matter of fact, I own 3 watches but 2 of them need new batteries and I haven't bothered to replace them.

Wednesday Hodgepodge

It's an overcast day outside, but it's not a problem for me.  There's no school today due to a teacher's planning day (actually, it's Yom Kippur, but they don't call it that).  So I get to look at the clouds without having to go out into this muggy morning.  Instead, I'll answer some Wednesday Hodgepodge, courtesy of Joyce, From This Side of the Pond.

1. The Wednesday Hodgepodge this week falls on John Chapman's birth date.  He's more famously known as Johnny Appleseed...what's your favorite variety of apple?

Since I'm from NY, I grew up on apples.  My mom always bought the standards:  red delicious for eating, Granny Smiths for baking.  I like trying all kinds of varieties, but they aren't as accessible here in South Florida.  I enjoy galas and fiji apples.

2.   When did you last say 'ick'?

When my son pulled out a bag of romaine lettuce my daughter had bought and forgotten about.  It was not pretty.

3.   Do you think there's a generation gap?  Explain.

I think that, while each generation may have different views on things based on experiences, generation gaps are created when we refuse to listen to and have compassion for the opinions of others.  Young people can benefit from the wisdom of their elders, and there is much to be learned technology-wise from the youth who are more in tune with those things.  Generation gaps are broken down when we agree that every generation has something worthwhile to offer.

4.  What's on your computer screen saver?  Do you leave it alone or change it often?

I have my daughter's old computer, and her screen saver is...well, none.  Her wallpaper is a winter scene, dark with snow on the ground and on the trees, with a street light illuminating and a colorful swirl running through.  I haven't changed it; I haven't even thought about changing it.

5.  If you had the attention of the entire world for two minutes, what would you say?

"Life on earth is short.  Eternity is forever.  Use the time you have on this earth wisely if you care about your eternity.  Jesus Christ offers eternity in heaven to all who believe in Him.  Why wouldn't you take advantage of that?"

6.  Four fashion trends to try this fall are-brocade/jacquard (fancy printed fabrics), peplum, lace, and printed pants...which of these four would you be most likely to wear?

When you live in South Florida like I do, fashion trends don't change much.  We might go from flip-flops to closed shoes if the weather drops below 60 degrees.  If the temps are in the 50s, we will most likely pull out a sweater or jacket.  Of course, those temps don't visit us till December, when fall is coming to an end.  I don't see myself in brocade/jacquard, peplum or printed pants in our humid weather, so I'm gonna go with lace.

7.  What can make your bad day better?

A hug from my kids.  Or chocolate.  Or having my kids hug me while I have some chocolate.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

This was my grandfather, my mom's father.  I'm helping my son do a heritage report for his Civics class, and I've gotten some pictures for him to include.  It's such a blessing to be able to share our family's history with my son.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

The Simple Woman's Daybook

For Today, September 25, 2012...

Outside my's pitch dark.  It was already pretty dark at 7:30pm.

I am thinking...of the 7th grade science fair project.  I came back from a school meeting detailing what this year's project entails.

I am thankful...that I was able to take my son to the dentist today to get some baby teeth pulled that should have come out a long time ago.

I am bed soon.  It's 9 o'clock at night.  Well, not quite yet, but in about an hour.

I am pj's.  I've taken a nice refreshing shower and I'm ready for bed.

I am tall my youngest son is getting.  It's like he grows a quarter of an inch every month or so. He is now my height, 5'4", and he's 12 years old.  Where did my baby go? :'(

In the kitchen...we had crispy baked chicken wings with garlic noodles, broccoli and salad.

I am creating...nothing right now, but I'll be working with my son to create a science project very soon.

I am reading...Hurricanes in Paradise, still.  I haven't had much time to sit and read lately.

I am hoping...this science fair project goes well for my son.  He has to do a Power Point presentation this time.  Science fair projects have changed since I was a kid.

I am looking forward to...sleeping in tomorrow.  No school on account of Yom Kippur.

I am son's chatter.  It's easy to see the numbing medicine has worn off.

Around the house...I did the basics today because it was Molly's bath day.  She got all cleaned up, as did her bedding and her toys.  She smells fresh and sweet now :)

A favorite quote of the day..."Do all the good you can, by all the means you can, in all the ways you can, in all the places you can, at all the times you can, to all the people you can, as long as ever you can." - Charles Wesley.

One of my favorite things...days off from school :D

A few plans for the rest of the week...I'm teaching for counsel time tomorrow in Awana.  I'll be talking about the fruits of the Holy Spirit.  That's all I have planned other than church on Sunday.

Wanna join in the fun?  Visit Peggy at the Simple Woman's Daybook.  God bless.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Monday Quiz About Me

Here's one blog hop I enjoy because I can personalize it.  The first 4 questions are supplied by Heather at Acting Balanced.  The fifth question is provided by yours truly, and you get to answer it here on my blog.  Ready?  Here we go:

1. What room in the house do you try your hardest to keep clean?
That's easy - the kitchen.  I cook everyday, two or three times a day (depending on whether or not there's leftovers), so it gets cleaned constantly.

2. How do you describe your blog to someone you just met?
Learning to deal with life's never ending twists and turns.

3. What was your lie from last week?  (If you didn't play last week, What was your favorite cartoon you watched as a kid?)
#3 was my lie.  I'm the oldest of 4 children.

4. What is your favorite kind of salad? (post a recipe if you got one)
My favorite kind of salad is the kind that comes in a bag, already washed and chopped, and all it needs is to be tossed in a bowl with Good Seasons Italian dressing.

And now for my question for this week:

5.  Dog lover, cat lover, both, or none?
We are dog lovin' people in my house.  We currently have one dog, an American bulldog mix named Molly, who thinks she's people ;).  My daughter would happily bring home a whole houseful of dogs, but Molly gets jealous if there's any competition around.

Move It Mondays

It's the start of a new week, and the last week of September.  This year is going by pretty quick!

Today has been one of those days when I think, "No wonder everyone hates Mondays."  Just a hectic run around trying to figure out where to get the oil change done on my car.  J had told me I could get 3 free oil changes from the dealer.  When I called this morning I was informed only the first oil change was free, unless I had vouchers for additional freebies.  I didn't.  I asked J who had promised him this, since the salesman says he isn't authorized to do so.  J said the salesman had written it down.  I went through every slip of paper and found nothing.  So then, it was hunt for a place that will do the job for under $30, which is my budget.  The dealer wants $50, Jiffy Lube wants $42, and Pep Boys has a special this week, $27.  Guess where I'm going?  Yep, taking my car to Pep Boys at 1:00pm, and hopefully I'll get out of there before having to pick up my son from school.  Thankfully his big brother is home and will do that for me if I don't get done in time.

Speaking of my youngest boy, he's doing a Heritage report for his Civics class.  He's fascinated with some of our family's history.  I'm so glad I get to share this with him.  It's part of who he is, and he should get excited about it.

I'll be leaving soon to get that oil change for the car, but first I'm enjoying a lunch of tacos, homemade, not that Taco Bell junk.  I also need to put gas in the car, then stop by Home Depot to get a toilet repair kit, because the toilet in my bathroom is leaking.  All this as I watch the clouds start to roll in; it'll be another rainy day in South Florida.  Hope your day is filled with sunshine (or rain, if you need it).  God bless!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Observing My Senses

For Today, September 22, 2012...

I am seeing...rain, rain, and more rain.  We had thunderstorms yesterday afternoon into the night, and they aren't finished yet.  It's cloudy and wet outside.  Inside, it's warm and cozy :)

I am fall, even though the temperatures aren't any cooler.  The cloudiness outside and all the fall decor inside reminds me that today is the first day of autumn, my favorite time of the year.

I am hearing...the rain, as it cascades from the roof into the front yard.  We didn't have gutters put on the house when we bought it.  Talk about epic fail :P

I am tasting...a pumpkin spice Eggo waffle, pumpkin spice swirl bread, bacon and coffee.  I am enjoying this pumpkin spice season so much!  Yes sis, I will eventually try the pumpkin spice waffle recipe you sent (I already have a Belgian waffle maker), but for now I'll savor the taste and ease of popping an Eggo in the toaster oven!

I am brewed in my new coffee maker.  It is so nice to be able to have my morning coffee without interruption, while seeing the rain.

It just takes a moment to observe your surroundings.  Won't you join me?

Friday, September 21, 2012

The Week in Review

I didn't do a Thursday post because...I just didn't want to?  Yeah, that pretty much sums it up.  I wasn't in the mood to blog yesterday.  Today is a new day, and here's some of the stuff that has gone on and some of my thoughts for this week.

 - The pumpkin spice craze continues.  This week my son R brought home a couple of loaves of Pepperidge Farms Pumpkin Spice swirl bread.  Oh, sooo good!  Then last night he brought me a bag of Hershey's pumpkin spice Kisses.  It's like having a pumpkin pie or pumpkin spice cake melt in your mouth!  I love pumpkin spice anything, so all these new products are obviously targeted at me!

 - Speaking of Target, I had to stop there after picking up my son E from school this afternoon.  My coffee maker, which is pretty old, had started shutting off for no reason.  It would turn off for a few minutes, then turn on again.  I knew it was probably on its last leg, and I'd included a new coffee maker on my shopping list, but for the past 3 or 4 days it hadn't acted up, so I thought maybe it was a power surge or something.  I went grocery shopping and crossed the coffee maker off the list.  Wouldn't you know it, as soon as I got home I noticed the coffee maker had shut down again.  Only this time, there was no resuscitation.  It had completely died.  I was not too happy that it waited until AFTER I'd come home from Walmart to take its last breath.  On our way to Target we got caught in a drenching rainstorm, so bad I could hardly see where I was going.  Thankfully, though it would have been a shorter drive had I taken the expressway, I felt the Lord nudge me to take the frontage road instead.  With so much traffic and so little visibility, it was a much better option.  I'm happy to say I found a really nice Mr. Coffee 5 cup programmable coffee maker with stainless steel carafe, on sale for $19.99.  And what's more, by the time we'd finished shopping, the rain had stopped.

 - My son E and I have finished the book of Genesis and have started reading Exodus.  It's our goal to read through the Bible together, one chapter at a time, discussing as we go.  I know it'll take a long time, but the benefits are worth the effort.

 - My oldest son R started school this week.  He's working towards his bachelor's in...something to do with computers.  I think it's like IT stuff, or web design.  Or both.  He's told me before, but so much of what he says goes over my head.  Still, I listen.  That's what Mom's are for.

 - For some time now I've watched very little network television.  The commercials are not only too frequent, they are offensive many times, and with the presidential election coming up they are outright nauseating.  We've taken to watching Netflix quite a bit, and I've begun watching Leave It To Beaver episodes.  The nice thing is, my son E has enjoyed sitting with me and watching it too.  I laugh at the jokes, but also at things that weren't meant to be funny then but are hilarious now.  Like the fact that Wally and the Beaver get to watch a double feature film at their local movie theater for $.25 each.  That just blows my mind!  Mostly I like to watch it because the comedy, while sometimes corny, is so innocent and clean, not like many of the shows on television today that have off colored jokes or some sort of agenda behind them.  How I miss shows about everyday people and everyday lives, like Leave It To Beaver, The Andy Griffith Show, The Cosby Show...realistic without trying to be over-the-top, and stories anyone could identify with.

 - I measured my 12 year old son yesterday, and found that he's now 5'4" tall.  That's my height.  He's an inch taller than his sister, which doesn't please her in the least (she says she got stuck with the short gene).  I can't believe how much he's growing.  His dad bought him a pair of sneakers at the beginning of summer vacation, size 8 1/2.  I decided to get him a pair of sneakers for school, since the sneakers his dad bought are white and they'd get ruined.  His new sneakers are size 9.  I know shoe sizes can vary, but I also know this kid is stretching out, and with boys the feet grow first, then the height catches up.  My son's wish is to be as tall as my brother who is 6'.  Who knows, he just may get his wish.

 - I read some very sad news this morning.  One of my favorite Christian writers, actress Lisa Whelchel (Blair from The Facts of Life) has divorced her husband of 24 years.  When I read this, I felt my heart land in my stomach.  Divorce is difficult, it's painful, and for a devout Christian it's even more heart wrenching because we know how God feels about divorce.  I'm sure it's not a decision she and her husband made without careful consideration, but that still doesn't make it any easier.  My prayers are that they can heal from this devastating time, and that their children are able to cope with it also.  Although their 3 children are grown, it doesn't make it any less painful for a child when their parents separate.

And that's my life so far this week.  Tomorrow is Family Fun Night at our church, and I only hope and pray the weather isn't like it's been these last few nights, with rain and thunderstorms.  Have a wonderful and blessed weekend.

Follow Friday Four Fill-In

Time to join Hilary at Feeling Beachie for some Friday fill-in fun.

This week’s statements:
1. The last time I was on vacation, I went to ___
The last time I was on vacation, I went to Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure in Orlando, Florida.  We also went to Sea World and Aquatica.  It was a blast!

2. For ___I like to eat___
For breakfast I like to eat pancakes or waffles.  My latest obsession is pumpkin spice Eggos.

3. My heart hurts when____________because_______________________.
My heart hurts when my daughter tells me some of the stories of the kids in the orphanage where she works because these children have seen things no child should see, and have suffered as no child should suffer.

4. Why must _____________ just to____________________.
Why must I fix my bed every morning just to unfix it every night?  (Remember telling that to your parents?)

Five Question Friday

Happy rainy Friday!  At least it's a rainy Friday here.  I had to stop off at Target after picking my son up from school to get a new coffee maker, and I could barely see where I was driving.  It really poured, and the streets were starting to get flooded.  I'm so glad to be back home!  Let's get with the program - it's Friday, and that means Five Question Friday with Mama M at My Little Life.

1. What is one grammar issue you cannot let go without correction?
I am always correcting grammatical errors.  Whether it's written or spoken, our language should be treated with respect.  If I'm reading something and I find a grammatical error, I get stuck on it and it disturbs me to the point that I want to get a pen and correct it.

2. What's your favorite thing about fall?
Pretty much everything, but I would have to say the humidity goes down (eventually) and Thanksgiving.

3. What's your favourite dish to take to a potluck?
I usually will take a dessert.  One of my favorite cakes, like pumpkin spice cake or lemon cake.  They're always a hit.

4. When do you start Christmas (Holiday) shopping?
I've already started my Christmas shopping.  I like to start in September, looking for deals and getting them wrapped as soon as they come into the house.  I don't like to shop earlier than September because the house starts looking cluttered, and I hate clutter.

5. Did you move homes a lot growing up?
I guess we did.  We lived in apartments in New York, and as the family grew we moved to larger spaces.  The first apartment was a one bedroom, then when the twins were born we moved to a 2 bedroom.  When my baby sister was born we moved into a 3 bedroom, and when the rats moved into that place we moved into the projects, another 3 bedroom apartment.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Chats on the Farmhouse Porch

It's time to visit with Wendell the Wonder Horse and Patrice the Wonder Human on their front porch.  You can join us at Everyday Ruralty.

1. Do you prefer to wash dishes by machine or by hand? If you tell me you don't wash dishes, I will cry, but secretly want to be like you when I grow up!
I am a great lover of the dishwasher.  It does a wonderful job and keeps me out of the kitchen.  I still wash the big stuff by hand, but the dishwasher is provision from heaven as far as I'm concerned.

2. Who has been the biggest inspiration to you?
Many people have had a big impact in my life.  Family members, church friends, folks far and near.  My very biggest inspiration, though, is Jesus Christ.  He forgave me of my sins, paid the price for my sins with His own blood, and calls me His own.  Just knowing that has changed my life.

3. Have you been to any fall festivals or local fairs? Will you be going to any?
Because I live in South Florida, where the temps are still in the upper 80s, fall festivals haven't started yet.  We won't see any fairs or festivals till probably November.  I haven't been to any so far.

4. Bath or shower?
Definitely shower.  I don't like the idea of swimming around in my own sweat and dirt. :P

5. Tell me something interesting you learned from a blog recently. Please:)
I've been reading lots of recipes in blogs lately, probably because as the weather cools we're more apt to use the oven ;).  I think it's interesting how our cooking methods change along with the seasons.  Summer, it's barbecue time, winter is baking season.

Wednesday Hodgepodge

It's that time again, time for some Wednesday Hodgepodge, courtesy of Joyce, From This Side of the Pond.

1. What's the best and worst thing thing about growing older?
The best thing is probably all the lessons learned, good and bad, that I can pass on to the younger folks so they can ignore me until they get into trouble themselves ;).  The worst part so far, is having to dye my hair at regular 4-6 week intervals so no one will notice I have more grey hair than black.

2.   Autumn arrives this week in the Northern Hemisphere...what one thing do you love most about the fall season?
I love how the humidity levels start to go down and it becomes pleasant to go out for a walk again.  I love that Thanksgiving is right around the corner, which means Christmas isn't too far behind!

3.  Speaking of fall...pumpkin seems to be flavoring everything these days-are you a fan?   What's your favorite pumpkin flavored food or beverage?
I am TOTALLY a fan of everything pumpkin spice!  Currently I have pumpkin spice Eggo waffles for breakfast every morning.  I baked a pumpkin spice cake for the kids at the orphanage my daughter works at, and they were very thankful for that blessing.  I'm anxious to try the new pumpkin spice swirl bread by Pepperidge Farms, and Hershey's pumpkin spice Kisses.  They go on sale at Publix tomorrow. :D  

4.  Since we're on the subject of fall...what's the worst fall you've ever taken?
Not that any fall is a good one, but a few months ago I was putting in a new ceiling fan in the family room.  I was up on a ladder, and as I was climbing down I took a misstep and landed really hard on my left leg.  I fell backwards onto a recliner (thank the Lord!) but I was limping for a couple of days because my hip hurt so bad.

5.  If you could own a prop from any film what would you choose?
I can't think of anything.  I guess it's because I don't like clutter.

6. What's the most interesting word you've read or learned in the past week?
How about Hodgepodge?  Let's face it, that's not a word you run into everyday.

7. When was the last time you locked yourself out of your house, car, or office?  Was it a big deal?
I can't remember ever locking myself out of my car.  My son has locked me out of the house when I've been working in the backyard, but he does it because he thinks it's funny (boys have a warped sense of humor).

8.  Insert your own random thought here.
It's kind of a bummer reading about cooler weather up north and we're still in the upper 80s in South Florida.  Now, don't get me wrong, I love the warm weather.  I am not a fan of cold weather.  At.All.  But I do wish the humidity would take a hike.  There's nothing more pleasant than taking a walk in the park when the weather is just right, low 70s with a nice breeze and low humidity.  I'm really looking forward to that again.

The Simple Woman's Daybook

For Today, September 19, 2012...

Outside my window...the sun is blaring and the humidity is high.  We're supposed to get more thunderstorms tonight.

I am much I like it when it rains at bedtime, but how much I don't like it raining when I have to drive.

I am thankful...that my kids are all living at home.

I am Awana tonight.

I am wearing...a black and white top, white capris and black flip-flops.  It's 88 degrees out, but with 60% humidity and a heat index of 73, it feels more like 95 degrees.

I am attached Molly is to me.  She follows me around like she's my shadow.

In the kitchen...I made Italian lentil soup, a delicious and hearty soup.  There's also leftover meatballs in marinara sauce from yesterday.

I am creating...nothing, but my youngest son has started creating his Christmas list. :)

I am reading...Hurricanes in Paradise on my Nook (just started it), along with a couple of devotions, and my son and I have started on Exodus.

I am hoping...the weather starts to take a turn soon.  September is our rainy month.  Once the rains are over the weather does cool down some.

I am looking forward to...Family Fun Night at our church this Saturday.

I am son playing a video game.  He's "relaxing after a hard day at school." ;)

Around the house...I vacuumed and mopped the common areas, did 2 loads of laundry, dusted, put a clean table cloth on the dining room table, and vacuumed the fabric on the furniture.  I was a busy lady today!

A favorite quote for the day..."Our Father stands with open arms and asks us to trust in His faithfulness...Truly, He is steady, and He firmly grasps us as we reach out to Him." - Cynthia Heald.

One of my favorite things...anything pumpkin spice.  Cake, pie, waffles, anything!  Pepperidge Farms now has pumpkin spice swirl bread, and Hershey's has pumpkin spice Kisses for fall.  I'm a very happy lady!

A few plans for the rest of the week...tonight is Awana, then Saturday is our church's Family Fun Night, which my son E suggested so he's really happy and excited about it.  There'll be a movie, though we don't know what movie yet.

Wanna join in the fun?  Visit Peggy at the Simple Woman's Daybook.  God bless.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Monday Quiz About Me

This Monday blog hop, hosted by Heather at Acting Balanced, gives 4 questions to be answered by everyone, and one question to be answered here on my blog.  Are you up to the challenge?  Here we go:

1. Has reading a book ever changed your life? Which one and why, if yes?
Of course the Bible has changed my life, but so did a book by Frances Chan called Crazy Love.  Just in the first couple of chapters I cried like a baby, which is very unlike me.  What a beautiful reminder of God's amazing love for us.

2. What was your favorite game to play as a child?
I liked playing Trouble with the pop-o-matic die.  I could play that for hours.  We also enjoyed playing Parchessi and Chinese checkers.  Barbie was very popular as well.

3. What person in history would you most like to meet?
Jane Austen.  I love her books.

4. Tell us two truths and a lie about yourself...
I used to be a Jehovah's Witness, I never learned to ride a bike, I'm the oldest of 12 kids.

And now for my question:

5.  What are gas prices like in your area?
I get gas at Costco, and in South Florida it's $3.83/gallon.  It costs over $60 to fill my tank.  I'm not happy about it.

Move It Mondays

Good Monday morning!  I'm finishing up my breakfast of pumpkin spice Eggo, bacon and coffee.  Ever since I tried these pumpkin spice Eggos I can't get enough of them.  They are so delicious!  I don't know what I'll do once they go off the market.  They're only available in the fall.

We got some serious rain last night, coming down in buckets.  Humidity is at 90% right now which means it's not very comfortable outside.  Perhaps not the best day to work on organizing the garage, but it does need to get done.  I sold our old living room furniture that was in the garage, and now I get to fix it up and decide what stays and what goes.  There's plenty of stuff that needs to be taken to the dump and I have to try and figure out how we're gonna do it.  It was so much easier when I had the SUV, but even though the Sonata has lots of trunk space it's still not big enough to take old mattresses to the dump.  Or isn't it?  They are twin mattresses, after all.  Maybe...

My son E has the day off from school today.  The district calls it a teacher's planning day, but we all know it's because of Rosh Hashanah (Happy New Year to our Jewish friends!).  He's gonna have a school buddy come over to play.

My daughter A worked in a different house at the orphanage.  They occasionally send her to different houses in the complex, depending on the need.  She really likes the house she's working in this week.  They played music and sang worship songs before bed.  My daughter loves music, and being able to share her talent with others.  I hope they keep her in this house permanently.  It would make her so happy.

My oldest son R goes back to school today.  He's working on his bachelor's degree.  It means they've cut his hours at the store, which he's not happy about, but it's necessary so he can finish school.

Lastly, today is a special day.  Forty four years ago my mom gave birth to my brother and sister and my life changed dramatically.  I went from being an only child, to the eldest of 3 in one sharp sweep.  Well, I have to say, I can't imagine what my childhood would have been like without those two invaders ;).  Happy birthday to my siblings, God bless you both.  Love you guys.

I'm off to enjoy my Monday.  Hope you'll do the same!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Observing My Senses

For Today, September 15, 2012...

I am seeing...lots of sunshine and puffy white clouds.  The leaves on the palm trees are moving, indicating there's some sort of breeze out there, though whether it's a cool breeze or a warm breeze I don't know since I haven't been out yet.

I am feeling...relieved and thankful that I got the extra furniture sold.  Someone is coming over this morning to pick it up.

I am son snoring.  Considering that he's in his bedroom and I'm in the dining room, that's a loud snore.  I hear my youngest son talking to the cartoons on TV.  Funny little kid.

I am morning coffee, after having my breakfast of pumpkin Eggo and bacon.

I am smelling...pumpkins and spice and everything nice.

It just takes a moment to observe your surroundings.  Won't you join me?

Friday, September 14, 2012

Follow Friday Four Fill-in Fun

Happy Friday!  Time for some fill-in fun, courtesy of Hilary at Feeling Beachie.

1. I like to __ when I am ___
I like to listen to music when I am in the car.

2. ___ is my favorite vegetable
Broccoli is my favorite vegetable.  Even as a kid.  Yeah, I know, weird.

3. I get ________ when I ___________.
I get irritated when I when I have interruptions to my perfectly laid out plans.  Which is inevitable.

4. I’m surprised by _________ and ____________
I'm surprised by people who vehemently defend their politicians and then turn on them when they don't keep their campaign promises.  I mean really people, what did you expect?

Five Question Friday

Welcome to Friday, and another 3 day weekend courtesy of our Jewish friends celebrating Rosh Hashanah. I have some errands to run today so I'm gonna go with a quick Five Question Friday post, hosted by Mama M at My Little Life.

1. How long did it take for you to find your wedding dress? (Wedding dress pics anyone?)
Not long at all - picked a little number off the racks at a local store.  I'd have to hunt through tons of pictures to find one, but it was just a short white dress with a bolero jacket.

2. Someone in your general vicinity releases a NASTY smelling fart. Do you say anything or blow it off?
Of course the mental picture of this made me LOL, but honestly, I would move away and not make a big deal about it.  Everyone farts.  I can't imagine anyone purposely holding one in just to ruin my day (though I'm sure plenty of folks have done just that).

3. What is the scariest thing that happened to you or scared you recently?
Hmm, I can't think of anything that has scared me lately.  Now watch something terrify me today :P

4. Favorite brand and flavor of ice cream.
Haagen Dazs, hands down.  My favorite is Vanilla Swiss Almond, but I also love Dulce de Leche (caramel flavored).

5. Are you able to sleep well in hotels?
I'm able to sleep well anywhere, I just need to be tired.  I was on a cruise ship once and was so tired I was falling asleep while standing up.  All I need is the proper motivation.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Chats on the Farmhouse Porch

It's nice to relax in the middle of the week with Patrice and Wendell at Everyday Ruralty for some chats on their porch.  You can join them here.

1. What's the last thing that made you cry?
Unrepentance.  It's painful to see people do what is wrong, knowing it is wrong, but showing no remorse for doing what's wrong.

2. Have you ever had any small pets, other than cats or dogs?
We used to have a fish tank with goldfish and angelfish.  We had them for years.

3. Waffles or pancakes?
Oh my, that's a tough one!  I love both!  I totally love buttermilk pancakes, but I also love crispy, fluffy waffles with pecan syrup.  Oh, I can't choose!  Don't make me choose!

4. Do you like politics? We don't need to know who you want to vote for if you are in the US, facing the upcoming election- just asking if you find the whole thing interesting.
I don't enjoy politics at all.  I firmly believe in the right to vote, and that every American citizen has an obligation to go to the polls and make their voice heard.  But politics is nothing more than mudslinging, lies and deceit.  It's empty promises made by selfish leaders who like to tickle the ears of the American people so we believe in them.  There are decent politicians out there, but they are few and far between.  It's very discouraging.

5. Please fill in the blanks: If only I could____________then___________.
If only I could reverse the hands of time, then my kids would be little again and I would take more time out to play with them.

Wednesday Hodgepodge

It's Wednesday, time to join Joyce at From This Side of the Pond for some Wednesday Hodgepodge.

1.  ARE YOU READY FOR SOME FOOTBALL?  The NFL is back in action along with all the college teams.  Are you a fan?  Who do you root for?  If you're not a fan what do you do while the rest of America watches Saturday, Sunday, Monday night, and now Thursday night games?

I am so NOT a fan of football.  I would only watch college football if my daughter's school, UCF, was playing, otherwise I wouldn't even know if anyone was playing.  I'm not a sports enthusiast, period.  While everyone else is watching football, you might find me curled up with my Nook, or watching Poirot on Netflix.  Anything but football.

2. What's something I'll always find in your closet?

Gift wrap.  I store the wrapping paper in my closet, especially the Christmas wrapping paper, so that I can wrap presents in the privacy of my bedroom without anyone seeing me, then hide said presents in said closet.  It makes my closet feel special when there are presents stashed in there :)

3. Share one of your earliest memories.

I remember going on the train in NYC to visit a friend of my mom's.  She'd originally been our next door neighbor in the Bronx, but then she moved to Manhattan and we'd go visit her and her daughter.  For me, getting on the train was like getting on a rocket ship to the moon.  For some reason it made me feel very grown up.

4. What circus act best describes your week so far?

Hmm, the way I've been running around trying to get all my errands done, I feel like I'm being shot out of a cannon most of the time.

5. What's a food you disliked as a child but you love now?

Black beans.  My mom would make them occasionally, and I thought they were totally ugly and disgusting-looking.  Now I thoroughly enjoy them.

6.  Describe your summer in three words.

Hot and humid.

7.  Where were you on September 11, 2001? Will you do anything special to mark the day this year?

I was at my job, and I got a call from a dear friend who told me that an airplane had crashed into one of the towers.  I thought that was extremely strange, since there is no flight pattern that goes through that area for that particular reason; you don't want planes getting close to the skyscrapers.  I thought it was some private plane that had lost control, until she told me another plane had crashed.  Then I knew it was no accident.

We prayed for the survivors of 9/11 in our Sunday school class.  I can't imagine how sad this day must be to those that lost a loved one.  May we never forget.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

This has been a very sad week for my cousin, who had to put her beloved beagle Ginger to rest.  Ginger had a tumor growing against her lungs.  My cousin could have opted for chemotherapy, but for a dog that was 12 years old it would have been painful, and her quality of life would have suffered greatly.  I know my cousin made the right choice in ending Ginger's suffering, but it doesn't make the pain go away any faster.  Sweet Ginger will be missed.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Finding Storage Solutions

My kitchen is not a huge one.  It's a 10X13 U-shaped kitchen with a long peninsula that faces the family room.  It looks larger than it is because it's open to the family room.

One of the issues I have with my kitchen is the fact that there isn't enough storage space.  When we remodeled, J decided there were changes that needed to be made that I didn't agree with but he insisted would make the kitchen work better.  Interesting, since he never did anything in the kitchen other than get water.  The changes he made, like putting the trash in one of the lower cabinet spaces and putting lots of glass doors on the upper cabinets, caused me to lose even more cabinet space.  My temporary solution at the time was to put a small microwave cart at the entrance of the kitchen where I could keep my crock pots and cookbooks.

It was too small really, but I didn't know what I wanted there, and the space itself isn't that big.  Once the older kids moved out and hubby did as well, it didn't matter.  I no longer needed a whole lot of space for just me and my youngest son.  However, when the two older kids came back home with their stuff, and I found myself buying more food so they could take food with them to work as well as eat at home, I knew I'd have to find a way to add storage.  Problem, of course, would be doing it without spending much money :P.  My daughter came up with a solution that I'm actually quite pleased with.

My oldest son had bought this Closetmaid closet organizer to put his books in.  I can't fit the shelves and books in the house, so this was in the garage.  My daughter had the idea to put all the plastic containers from the pantry into these shelves, leaving more space for food and appliances in our small pantry.  My concern was having it open, which could look messy, but she did a great job of putting everything neatly so it looks attractive.  I'm so thankful to have a daughter that takes the initiative to find ways to be more organized!  Especially when it doesn't cost me a thing!

Signs of Fall

Here in South Florida, we don't get to enjoy some of the signs of fall that the rest of our nation see.  There are no leaves changing colors on palm trees, and the cooler weather won't be around till late October (or sometimes even later).  Baking may be nice for some, but when the temperatures are still in the 80s it's hard to justify warming up the kitchen.  What is one to do if autumn doesn't feel like autumn?  Improvise!

This is on my kitchen counter:

This is also on the kitchen counter, underneath the upper cabinets.  The inscription says, "For all these gifts we thank Thee, Lord."  It's a favorite of mine.

On the family room coffee table.

 My hurricane lamp.  I leave this out all year long because I love it so much.

The nice thing about this ceramic autumn store is that when it's turned over it's a winter scene, perfect for Christmas.  

Here's my little harvester, ready to go to work.

The centerpiece on my dining room table consists of two lamps which were given to me as a Christmas present, a hay and pumpkin piece that I got at Kohl's for $7.99, and a bronze colored charger that I got at Walmart for $2.  The tablecloth I've had for years as well, got it at Walmart on clearance for about $6.

Here's a wreath I made for the front door.  I bought the ring, which is made of branches painted gold.  Then I got the individual pieces to hot glue them on.  I saw a similar wreath at Walmart for $10.  I probably paid $5 - $6 for mine, and it's more personal because I made it myself to my taste.

I've had trouble with this swan planter, because nothing I plant in it survives.  Solution?  Fake flowers.  I got orange sunflowers which are perfect for fall and I'm guaranteed they won't die :).

I bought this lovely plant at Lowe's.  It's a false bird of paradise.  The plant in this particular planter had died, and I wanted something to put here since it's the first thing you see by the front door.  The fact that the flowers are orange is a bonus.

This, by the way, is what South Florida looks like in the early to mid fall.  Lots of rain and thunderstorms daily, with plenty of wind.  Once the tropics calm down and the rainstorms cease, the humidity goes down and the days are sweet and comfortable.  It can happen anytime from October to November, but with this having been such a brutal summer we're all hoping fall comes sooner rather than later.

The Simple Woman's Daybook

For Today, September 11, 2012...

Outside my's sunny now, but I see some grey clouds peeking in the distance.  We're expecting rain again this afternoon.

I am thinking...of 9/11, and what it means to our country.  Just writing the date on my post brings a heaviness to my heart as I remember that fateful day.

I am thankful life, my health, my family, my home.  So much to be thankful for.

I am finish making lunch/dinner before I pick up my son from school.

I am wearing...a BarlowGirl t-shirt, jean capris and flip-flops.  It's 89 degrees out but with the high heat index it feels like 96 degrees.  The humidity is only 59% right now but that'll change soon enough.

I am noticing...the wind picking up.  I'm sure the rain won't be long in coming.

In the kitchen...I've got a meatloaf in the oven, potatoes on the stove waiting to be mashed, and I'll be getting some green beans warmed up soon.

I am creating...a Christmas stash.  The first present has been purchased and is already wrapped.

I am reading...Knowing the Truth About Jesus the Messiah.  I haven't got much left to read so I'll be looking for something new soon.  The book I mentioned is an ebook that is free on Barnes and Noble.  I recommend it.

I am hoping...the rain lets up while I'm picking my son up from school.  He didn't want to take his umbrella with him.

I am looking forward to...that meatloaf.  It smells delicious!

I am daughter on the phone.  She's calling folks who've signed up to volunteer at church.

Around the house...I vacuumed up lots of dog hair this morning, and dusted, so the house is looking good.

A favorite quote of the day... "We are the Bibles the world is reading; We are the creeds the world is needing; We are the sermons the world is heeding." - Billy Graham.

One of my favorite things...watching our dog Molly take a nap.  She looks so comfy!

A few plans for the rest of the week...tomorrow is my son's school open house.  We get to meet the teachers and find out what the curriculum will consist of this year.  It's my turn to bring breakfast to our Sunday school class this week, so I'm thinking whether to buy or bake.

Wanna join in the fun?  Visit Peggy at the Simple Woman's Daybook.  God bless.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Pocket Pies

My sister has asked that I reveal the recipe to make what Alton Brown calls pocket pies, mini pies that can be held in the hand, similar to Hostess Fruit Pies.  I could simply explain how to make them, but it's so extremely easy that I'd be embarrassed to post just the how-to.  Instead, I'll give some pictures along with step-by-step instructions for everyone's enjoyment.

For starters, here's what you'll need:  pastry discs (found in the frozen food section of your supermarket), fillings (I use fruit pie filling from Winn-Dixie, like apple pie filling and blueberry filling, or Nutella for chocolatey pies), and oil for frying.  I use corn or canola oil, and add a little olive oil because I love the flavor.

I separate the discs, and have a small bowl of water nearby for moistening the edges.

I moisten the edges on both sides with my fingers.  This is so there is a good seal on the pies before frying.

I put the filling on top of the disc.  In this picture I've used apple pie filling.  About a tablespoon should be good; don't overfill or they won't seal properly and will leak.

Fold the pie pastry in half, then press on the edges with a fork to seal the edges tight.  Flip the pie over and do the same on the other side.

Set them in a frying pan filled with about 1/4" of oil and fry on medium heat till browned.  It'll take about a minute, minute and a half.

Flip and brown on the other side.  Once both sides are browned, remove from the pan and put on a rack or on paper towels to drain the excess oil.

These were made with blueberry pie filling.

And these are my "chocolate" pies, made with Nutella.  The process is the same; you can use any filling you like:  peach, pineapple, lemon, blackberry, raspberry, etc.

And that's it.  I know, super simple!  If you like your pies extra sweet, you can sprinkle some confectioner's sugar over the finished product, but my family likes them just like this.  They can also be baked in a 350 degree oven; don't know how long it takes but I would calculate about 15 - 20 minutes.  I'd do an egg wash on the top to keep the dough moist.  We like these because in my house everyone has a different flavor preference.  I absolutely love apple pie but my kids don't care for it.  My two older kids love blueberries but because of my allergies I can't have them :P.  My youngest son is all about chocolate.  This way I can please all palates without having to bake 3 entire pies.

As a side note:  I like my apple pocket pie warm, but my kids say the blueberry pies are better chilled.  You try them out and decide what you like best.  Enjoy!

Monday Quiz About Me

Here's a fun blog hop that can be personalized to each person's taste.  There are four questions for everyone to answer, then the option to add a fifth question for visitors to answer.  If it peaks your interest, Heather at Acting Balanced would love to have you give it a try.

1. What is your favorite memory you made while on walk?
I usually go on walks early in the morning with my son, I leave the car at our local Winn-Dixie and walk the rest of the way to his school.  We have some of the funniest conversations during those walks!  I also have the memories of walking our dog Tobey who is gone, and now of walking Molly.  It's fun to see her curiosity as she sniffs every spot on our walk through the neighborhood.

2. Do you prefer to live in the city, suburbs or country?  Why?
I would love to live in the country, with all the wide open spaces and fresh air!  I've lived in the city and I hated it.  I now live in the suburbs and I do like our little town a lot, but it's still too many houses close to each other.  I'd love to have some land, a nice big piece to plant stuff.

3. Post the cutest kid/pet/whatever picture you have taken lately?

This is Froggy.  Froggy got on our patio door during Tropical Storm Isaac.  I guess the rain was too much for him ;)

4. What is your favorite recipe made with apples?
Apple pie.  I've made it, I love it, and I could eat it everyday, but my stubborn family doesn't care for it. :P

And for my question:

5.  When do you start your Christmas shopping (remember, it's only 3 months away!)?
I start Christmas shopping now, in September.  I like having all or most of my Christmas shopping done before Thanksgiving, and anything that's left to be bought I try to do online.  I hate going to the mall in December.  It's too crowded for my taste.

Move It Mondays

Happy Monday everyone!  Hope the weekend was a good one.  I had a pretty relaxing weekend.  Both my older kids worked on Saturday, and my youngest spent the day with his dad, so for a good chunk of the day I had the home to myself.  I used that time to watch some Poirot on Netflix :).  I love Agatha Christie's books, especially Poirot, so that was fun.  I also watched Witness for the Prosecution, an old murder mystery, and enjoyed it a lot!  We've been watching more and more Netflix and less network television because we hate some of the commercials on TV.  So annoying!  But last night we watched The Great American Bible Challenge with Jeff Foxworthy as host.  It was lots of fun!  The questions started off easy but they got harder as the game progressed, and it was cool to see if we could figure out the answers!

I actually don't have that much to do today, since I got pretty caught up on a lot of stuff on Saturday.  Laundry is as caught up as it's gonna get; there's less than a load of anything except towels, maybe I'll wash those.  I do need to make a run to Costco for detergent, but I might leave that for after lunch.  I found turkey cutlets at Publix which I intend to make with gravy and stuffing.  I like making healthy foods that the family will like, and we do like turkey, but my oh my it's pricey!  We'll have to wait till closer to Thanksgiving to get some good deals.  I wish I had a freezer to stock up when meats are on sale, but I've got no place to put one right now :P.  I have some items in the garage that need to get sold, and if that happens I can get a freezer and put it out there.

There's another thing I want to start doing, and that's Christmas shopping.  Oh, don't look so surprised; Christmas is only 3 months away, and if I can find some good deals now you better be sure I'll take advantage of them.  I always do my Christmas shopping early because I hate being in the stores in December.  Folks can get vicious.  I want to remember what it is I'm celebrating, not getting into fights over some video game that'll be forgotten just days after the wrapping paper comes off.

The weather might be improving slightly, though today it's pretty hot and muggy out.  There is a breeze, though, and now that the sun is rising later and setting earlier the days should start to cool down a tad.  I'm thankful that TS Leslie and Hurricane Michael pose no threat to the US, but we're not out of the woods yet. Today marks the peak of hurricane season, and September is known for being the busiest month in the Atlantic, so I'm keeping an eye on the storm activity.

I hope your week is a pleasant one.  Enjoy this Monday, it's a gift.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Observing My Senses

For Today, September 8, 2012...

I am seeing...clear blue skies and not a hint of the thunderstorm we got yesterday afternoon, where the parking lot at our Winn-Dixie flooded.  I'm hoping it'll be a beautiful day.

I am feeling...grateful because God is so good.  I have my children at home with me, what could be better?

I am hearing...silence.  My boys are awake but still in the bedrooms, which gives Mama some time to enjoy the quiet.

I am breakfast, which consists of two slices of bacon, a pumpkin spice Eggo waffle, and coffee.

I am smelling...the fall candles on my dining room table.  I think they're a pumpkin spice scent too.  Whatever it is, it smells like fall.

It just takes a moment to observe your surroundings.  Won't you join me?

Friday, September 7, 2012

Getting a Great Bargain

A couple of weeks ago I posted about some furniture rearranging I'd done, putting the family room furniture in the living room and moving the furniture we'd bought for the kids into the family room.  This was the end result of the family room:

I like the furniture itself, the microfiber fabric, the neutral tan color, and the red pillows my daughter picked for them from Costco.  But there was something missing.  Can you see it?  Or rather, can you not see it?  Or rather still, can you see too much of one thing because of what's missing?  Yeah, too much floor and nothing to break it up.  It needed an area rug.

Problem is, those things can get quite expensive.  I wasn't about to shell out $250 or more on a 5'X7' rug that would be trampled on and laid on and filled with dog hair and crumbs, but I couldn't leave it looking unfinished either.  So I went online to see what I could find.

I knew I wanted something modern, contemporary.  I knew it had to have red, and any of the other colors on my curtains in the family room so that it would work well.  I also knew I didn't want blue.  I'm just not a fan of blue.  I don't like it, and I don't want it.

I looked at rugs at Target first, because I love their styles, but the prices were still a bit on the steep side at $130.  Since I'd found my previous living room rug at Lowe's, I decided to see what they had to offer.  Nothing I liked.  Same with Home Depot.  There were a couple of nice looking ones at Walmart (of all places) going for $90, but I wondered how they'd look once I saw them in person.  I realized I didn't want to shop for rugs online; I wanted to see them, touch them, and appreciate them firsthand, so off I went with my daughter to Target, since it was her day off.

I saw one rug at Target that was just what I was looking for.  There were 2 problems.  One, it was only available in a picture; I'd have to go to another Target to actually see it, or have them order it.  Two, the price was still $130 and I couldn't see myself ordering it and then deciding it was over my budget, so I walked away, wondering if I'd made the right choice.

I had to go to Walmart to do some grocery shopping today, so I figured I'd take a look at the rugs and see if there wasn't something I liked.  Well, wouldn't you know it, they had rugs on clearance!  There were 2 rugs in particular that I liked, one was a better quality with a price of $64, but the color looked more orangey than red.  I could make it work; it would mean buying new pillows for the sofas, but it wasn't what I wanted.  The second rug had the reds, greens and browns I wanted, but it also had blue.  Well, not exactly blue, more like teal, but still in the blue family.  It didn't have a price tag on it so I decided to scan it and see what the damage would be.  I couldn't believe my eyes.  $49.96!  Well, I think I can live with some blues at that price!  Here's how it looks now:

What made me even happier, was seeing some stripes on the curtain that are blue, though they are few and far between.  What I like best is that it gives the room a warmth that was lacking before.  I love a cozy room!

Here's another bargain, if you live in the South and have Publix Supermarkets in your area.  They have Duncan Hines cake mixes buy one get one free!  If you're like me and bake lots of cakes in the fall and winter months, you will want to take advantage of this sale.  At $1.99 each, they end up costing less than $1.00 a box - better than Walmart which sells them for $1.25 - $1.50 a box.  This baker/bargain hunter will be enjoying a new look in my family room and delightful smells from my kitchen!

Follow Friday Four Fill In Fun

It's Friday, and Friday is Fill-In day.  Let's join Hilary over at Feeling Beachie for some fill-in fun.

1. I wish I had ___ to ___
I wish I had time and money to travel.

2. I stopped wearing ____
I stopped wearing dress pants when I stopped working.  Now it's all skirts and capris.

3. My favorite song right now is_________because________.
My favorite song right now is Forgiveness because it speaks to my situation and heart.

4. I always sing while________.
I always sing while I'm driving.  Which must amuse the other drivers on the road.

Five Question Friday

Happy Friday!  I'm a happy camper today thanks to a great purchase that I'll post about later.  Right now I'm gonna get my Five Question Friday post done.  You can too, just hop on over to Mama M's at My Little Life.

1. What is your favorite fall family tradition?
One of the disadvantages of living in South Florida is that there isn't a big noticeable change from summer to fall, so fall family traditions aren't as common.  There are pumpkin patches, one at a local church, but it's not something we do as a family.  I decorate the house for fall, but that's about it.

2. If money weren't an issue, how many kids would you have?
A whole bunch!  At least 6!  I love my kids, I love playing with them, teaching them, caring for them, and I hated having to leave them with a babysitter so I could go to work to afford them.  If I could have been a stay at home mom from day one, I'd have me a quiver full.

3. If you were to get a tattoo, what would it be and where would you put it?
The only way I would get a tattoo is if I were tied up and forced to get one.  I am not a fan of tattoos.  At all.  I know for some people it's a form of art, but to me it's something I might get tired of later, or will look nasty once my skin wrinkles, so I don't see the beauty in it.

4. What condiment is a must in your house?
Mrs. Dash.  I love that I can season with it as much as I want and not worry about salt content.

5. How did your spouse/fiance propose?
He didn't really propose.  We just kind of got married because it was what was needed to be done.  There's no sweet sappy story behind my marriage, unfortunately.