Tuesday, February 28, 2012

On the Menu: The Train To Brussels

So, somehow I missed the train to Brussels...
Brussel Sprouts, I mean.

I did not eat Brussel Sprouts growing up,
and have never heard anyone say anything nice about them...
until recently.

First, my friend, Julie from my Book Club
LOVES them.
Like craves them love them.
So, one month she made them for us to try;
And I liked them,
I even noted my like for them here.

Then on my anniversary,
My Love and I got decked up real fancy and
went out to celebrate to a local seafood grill
(to which we had never been before)
and the server suggested that I try her fave,
flash-fried Brussel Sprouts.
Since I was in celebration mode,
I went for it!
And, whoa...
talk about 
I N C R E D I B L E.

And now I'm seeing them everywhere;
blogs, shows, 
I've even noticed them in the grocery store now
much more than I ever have before.
AND the health benefits of them...
good grief, they're quite amazing.

The other day I was craving those
little flash-fried sprouts.
And I wanted them.
So, I made them.

Oh, gracious, 
they were SO good
(I say they were SO good,
My Love says they were alright).
They tasted exactly the way I remembered them.
Ah! I just can't get over how GOOD they were.

So, here's what you do:

Strip a package of Brussel Sprouts of each of their little tiny leaves,
then (30 minutes later! Yeah, it seriously took me that long)
heat your skillet to a medium heat,
and cover with Olive Oil
then put ALL those little leaves in it.
Fry until the leaves are wilted and slightly crisp
and then sprinkle with just a tad bit of sea salt
(this is the restaurant's recipe,
I didn't have any sea salt at the time,
so I just used the salt I had)
and then serve.

We had ours with some Lemon-Dill Tilapia
and the whole meal was just...
I can't even think of another way to describe it.

Side note:
So, as good as this meal was...
two hours later and even later into the evening,
our house
So, Brussel Sprouts have been banned for now...
at least cooked this way or if my husband is going to be anywhere near our home.

I'm anxious to try some other recipes;
please don't MAKE me rely on Pinterest,
what do you have for me??

Monday, February 27, 2012

Good Company

My idea of good company is the company of clever, well-informed people who have a great deal of conversation; that is what I call good company.
Jane Austen

These are two of the clever, well-informed people that I spend most of my time with.
And you better believe that we have a GREAT deal of conversation!

I often can't believe I've been given this opportunity
to be entrusted with these little souls;
to represent Love to them;
to plant Hope in them and then get to watch it grow.
It's quite a calling
and I love it so much...
it's hard, and fun, and frustrating, and awesome
all in one.
One stop shopping, right up my alley.

Have a lovely Monday.

Friday, February 24, 2012

On The Menu: P-Dub's Pots de Créme

That Pioneer Woman sure has a knack for all-around goodness!
Oooh, and guess what???
She's coming here!
And my sister snagged us some tickets to see her goodness in person!!!
And then I text my other sister and she got in on this madness!
And then I called my other sister and got her on this train, too!
Obviously, I'm a tad bit excited about this.

she recently posted a recipe for 
but in it she also mentioned that it was an updated
version of a recipe she posted back in 2008.
So, I checked it out...
and then I made it.


It is SO good.

And when you see the ingredients 
and how simple it is to make,
you'll run to your kitchen 
and make it immediately.
So, here's what you'll need:

Oh... and vanilla, oops.
Or whatever kind of flavoring or Liqueur you'd care for...
this is where the l'Orange came in on her updated version,
she used Grand Marnier.

Pour your bag of semi-sweet chips into the blender,
add four eggs, a pinch of salt, and a couple teaspoons of vanilla,
then pulse to blend.
Mix well and then...
take your HOT coffee (8-10 oz.)
and pour into your blender through the little top lid 
while continuing to blend.
Once blended and melded together well,
empty into some really cute or fun
pots, bowls, glasses,
whatever suits your fancy.
I have these really cute little tiny mason jars
that I used for this project {fail}
that worked smashingly.
They managed to come off cute,
yet filled to the brim with sassiness
(hmm, sounds a little like someone I know...).
See what I mean:

This recipe filled 11 of these small jars,
and I added some homemade whipped cream
and the amount was perfect
as this concoction is SO rich...
and wonderful.


Tuesday, February 21, 2012

One Wall Down...

Sure, it may be the smallest space of wall to cover
in our home...
but it's complete!
To some of you, 
this may seem like small potatoes...
however, it is a major feat in my book.

Here's a view of how it fits into the room:

See those curtains??
They're gettin' the boot!
Who knows when though... 
(I DO at least have all the materials needed to
make new ones;
it's just a matter of cutting, piecing, pinning, sewing...
you know, things that don't take much time at all.)
But, at some point...

I just would like to point something out:
see the shade of gray in the top picture
compared to the shade of gray in the bottom picture??
This drives me crazy.
Most of the time,
with the way the lighting is in our house,
it's the top shade of gray,
which I love.
There is a certain time of day
in which the light creates this
blueish-gray shade,
and I am not a fan.
I just needed to share that.

I have one other wall that is ALMOST complete.
It's been ALMOST complete for some weeks now.
It's just waiting for one more piece in order to
go from ALMOST complete
to officially complete,
but I just can't quite figure out what I'm wanting there...
it'll come to me, I'm sure.

What are some of your favorite pieces in your home??

Sunday, February 19, 2012

A Life Changer...

I feel like I've experienced several 
life-changing moments
already in my short life;
At 15, my parent's divorce
was devastating,
though through it
I feel as though 
cycles were broken
and purpose
was instilled in me.

At 24, burying my mother-in-law
and youngest brother-in-law
brought a sorrow
that I really can't describe,
yet it proved 
the endurance and perseverance 
that I was capable of.

I've written before of my
two pregnancies that ended in miscarriage
and the ache that filled my being;
though I see now
what the Giver of Life was orchestrating.

With all of these under my belt,
nothing prepared me for her...

At thirteen weeks pregnant,
I saw a picture of what I thought
was my little baby boy.
The exhilaration that ran through me
for the next several weeks was incredible.
I prayed for HIM;
I sang to HIM;
I loved HIM.
We named HIM.

I went for my next sonogram
at 20 weeks pregnant
and saw a very clear image of a tiny
little baby GIRL.

I'll be honest,
I was so devastated.
I walked out to my car
and wept,
and cried a little more,
and finally pulled myself together
to go show my husband the images.

For me,
it was almost like experiencing
something similar to my miscarriages.
It was like HE was there, 
and then all of a sudden HE wasn't.
(Um, did I mention I was 20 weeks pregnant??
I was obviously a little emotional...)

Finally getting over the shock,
I began looking forward to this little girl.
I had always wanted boys,
but again knew that something bigger was taking place in me.
I needed that little girl more than I knew.

And when she arrived...
oh, goodness...

A joy no words can describe;
the love that took root in my heart and began growing;
the desire to be able to 
shield her,
protect her,
and give her the world
soared to an unattainable amount.

The long, frustrating sleepless nights
that left me gritting my teeth in rage
that our Maker would
not just grant us a little peace (and sleep!)
make me laugh now...
as I run on anywhere between five to six hours
of interrupted sleep these days
(this week, much less...
as I love on her teething little brother).

Her joy;
her questions;
her love;
her perception;
her wonder...
leave me in awe of our Creator.

Braiding her hair;
painting her nails;
making her dresses
(because that's ALL she wants to wear!);
passing on my addiction to lip gloss and mascara;
and showing her what is truly lovely
fills something in me
that I didn't even know I was missing.

She continues to leave me in bewilderment...
an incredibly wonderful bewilderment.

She's what I needed;
and today, 
she's four years old.
My first Little Love...

Happy Birthday, Little One.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Going Home.

I'm on the road this week.
My husband's grandpa died so we've come to
love on the family
and celebrate a life.

Death is not something I shy from;
I've been attending funerals since I was 16.
And I know this will sound strange,
but I will risk saying it anyway:
I actually really love attending funerals.
They stir my soul.
They help my mind ponder.
They help my heart feel.
They make me long for Home.

"We must meet the uncertainties of this world
with the certainty of the world to come."
A.W. Tozer

Friday, February 10, 2012



may be looking something more like this...

really soon.

I've been seeing heart patches everywhere
and I must say I love them.
Big hearts on your front,
tiny heart patches on your elbows,
oh, yes, please.

So, we'll see.

Monday, February 6, 2012

My Spare Time.

Despite little rascally children
getting up and out of bed
numerous times these last few days,
decorating and evening projects have still been taking place...
just MUCH more slowly than I prefer.
Tis the season, though,
the sowing season.
I was just telling some friends the other night
who were feeling sorry for my
hustling and bustling and wrangling of crazies
throughout the evening
that I'm quite of aware of this season that 
I've chosen to be in and not to feel sorry for me at all!
Three little ones who are four years old and under
teach and train me CONSTANTLY the virtues of 
and flexibility.
It's not always easy,
it's certainly not always enjoyable,
sometimes it pushes me to my breaking point,
but it's so worth it.

Here are a few more peeks though
of what I've accomplished in my
"spare time":

Enjoy this new day!

Oh, and PS:
I love, I mean LOVE it when you all comment!!
It gets me happy AND motivated...
so thanks!
My lists are kicking booty around here.

Friday, February 3, 2012

And The Winner Is...

Since I'm all about doilies right now,
I've been looking forward to sprucing this 
lampshade up for awhile.
As soon as I dabbed one little spot of paint on,
I knew it was headed for utter failure.
So, I moved on...

Stencil, of course...
"How hard can a stencil be??", 
I thought to myself.
Ugh! Gross.
So, putting all my creative powers to use...
this is what I ended up with!
Oh yes, you're seeing this right,
it's JUST painted.
No frills, no DOILIES, NO stencils,
just painted.
Okay, there's a little frill,
it is painted with metallic silver and gold.
And honestly,
I love it.
It shimmers.
It sparkles.
And it's just simple.
It was a good life lesson for me to remember.
A little shimmer;
a little sparkle;
and just plain simple
{almost} ALWAYS works.

Also... check out my sponsor, Lori, over at
and see her INCREDIBLE kitchen makeover!
It will get you excited,
trust me.

Have a lovely weekend!