Monday, August 29, 2011

Two Week Blogging Break

I am officially taking a blogging break. There is so much I want and need to do.

I am determined to return to my deep cleaning. This means eliminating a lot of things we do not need in our lives by either giving to Goodwill or throwing into the trash. I have the pantry, video & gaming bookcases, office, “linen closet”, bathrooms and the Master bedroom to go through. Yikes!

In addition to all this, I will be taking pictures of at least four items, including an antique sewing machine (not my Grandma’s), to Craigslist.

And, I want to spend time in the sewing/crafting room. I want to finish up at least one project. I have been procrastinating and I don’t know why! I guess I have too much of my mother in me. She too was slow. She had dreams; but, kept putting them off. I do not wish to be like that. It makes me angry at myself when I fall into the trap of a self-destructive mindset. So, I need to recoup, regroup, etc., and etc.

My husband is on call over the Labor Day weekend. This means we either need to stick close to home or be in a place where he can gain easy access to the internet. I am not sure what we will do during that holiday weekend. But, we will try to have fun.

If all goes well, I will return to blogging on September, 13th. I think two weeks is a decent break. Y’all could probably use a break from me too. Ha!

Edited to Add: It is highly likely that I will be returning home to the Houston area tomorrow (by myself). Mother is declining and I wish to be there for her. If this happens, I do not know when I will return.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Link Roundup

Nothing will work unless you do. ~Maya Angelou
  • Skateboard Themed Shelving DIY; D├ęcor; Boys

  • Colored Pencil Jewelry Crafting; Jewelry

  • 29 ways to Stay Creative Motion Graphic Video on Vimeo.

  • 15 Ways to Lace a Shoe

  • Money Isn’t the Root of All Evil Finances; I though a very good read
    ….1 Timothy 6:10 from the Bible, which is usually translated as “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil” or simply “for the love of money is the root of all evil.” Not money itself, but the love of money.

    That’s a key distinction. Money itself is neither good nor evil. It’s simply a medium of exchange. It’s a way for people to trade one thing – say, their money or their time or their energy – for other things, like food or housing.
  • Grace for the Good Girl: a peek inside Christian; Inspirational; Excerpt from Chapter 1 of a Book
    If my story were a planet, then your rejection of me would be my nuclear holocaust. This fear of rejection drives me hard, eating away at my courage. And so I am cautious in my love. I am timid in my faith. My life tells a small story. I long to be seen, but I feel safe when I’m invisible.

    So I stay a good girl. And I hide.

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;

A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;

A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;

A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;

A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;

A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

~Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

Thursday, August 25, 2011

The Menu Bar

Today I have nothing in the way of written to share. Although, I have been hard at work writing up two new pages and changing this blog slightly. Take a look! Those two new pages count for writing. Correct?

Let me tell you, I originally thought it would only take me an hour or two to add the menu bar above. It really took me five hours! I developed a headache, researched all over the Web, discovered what I was doing wrong in the last hour and got the dang thing working correctly. I hope none of you encountered any difficulties while I turned this blog into a playground yesterday.

If you do take a look at those pages, let me know what you think. Honestly, I could use constructive criticism on how to improve them. Thank you in advance!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Wordy Wednesday

What is the best part to cooking? Baking?



Getting to lick the good stuff!

PS: Did you notice the little pig on my apron? Ha!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

DIY Tuesday: Trash to Treasure (Finale)

Trash to Treasure: Before Pictures
Trash to Treasure: Part II
Trash to Treasure: Part III

Just in case you need a reminder of what this nightstand looked like before the change

The Final Product!

I am planning to get a glass top to protect the surface. This nightstand is now in the room by the bed and it is mine. I am so happy. After 14 years of dealing with a cheap round table with a tablecloth, this takes the cake!

I absolutely love how this nightstand turned out and the color goes extremely well with the existing furniture in the bedroom. I am tickled pink with this project. And, Dan is extremely pleased with it too.

The total cost of this project (not counting the glass I am planning to get for the top) was less than $50. We purchased the handles, the most expensive part of the entire project. We also purchase wood for the new feet and sides, paint and a couple of paintbrushes and sandpaper. We already had the rest of the supplies.

Not bad for a rescued piece of trash.

By the way, work on the DIY desk has been restarted last Sunday. It will be Dan's and I think he is looking forward to having something substantial for a nightstand besides a cheap rickety old round table.

I am linking up at:
  Creations by Kara      Todays Creative Blog  The Shabby Nest

Monday, August 22, 2011

Pictorial Monday: Gracie

All I have picture-wise is cats, cats, and more cats! Currently, it is so hot down here that most of my photographic opportunities are with my cats indoors. So, you have more pictures from the Crazy Cat lady today.

I discovered that Gracie found a new "bed" in our bedroom on August 17th. She looked like a very happy contented kitty. I just had to take a picture. She is the most cooperative subject - the opposite of Chessie.

Two hours later, I saw her doing this and I just had to take another picture.

For some odd reason, I'm liking the first picture over the second more. But, both are pretty good.

And that is all for today. Hopefully, I'll have something more interesting next week.

[Mutters to self, "yeah right, that will happen when the weather begins to cool off."]

Friday, August 19, 2011

Link Roundup

The voices in my head might not be real. But, they have some good ideas. ~Unknown
There is not much in the way of links this week. I have been struggling all week with this and that. Hopefully, things will look up soon!

  • Vintage Step Stool Plans DIY

  • DIY Canvas Print Crafts

  • Homemade Gumdrops Baking; Candy

  • Emmett’s Meltdown on Switched at Birth On an episode of Switch at Birth with embedded Youtube clip.
    I'm tired of reading lips, only catching 30% of what people are saying but pretending I got more. I don't want to be working all of the time. I can only be myself with people who speak my language. Even if you learn, your friends are hearing, your family is hearing. And I will always be lost wondering what the joke is. Or worse, you'll be stuck interpreting for me, speaking for me. And that is not me. That will never be me!
The grass withers, the flower fades, But the word of our God stands forever. ~Isaiah 40:8

Thursday, August 18, 2011

5 Minute... Thursday: Beauty

Here is my third effort at the 5 minute challenge. It was written on Tuesday (August 16, 2011). The word for this week's challenge is "beauty". I had thought about this word for a bit. I wrote and then added the pictures afterward - some old posted previously in this blog, some old never posted in this blog, and one newly created just for this post.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. What one sees as beautiful, another may dismiss. Most people think in terms of humanity. Humanity ages over time and eventually fades away. What then constitutes as beauty?

Beauty is all around us even in the midst of a severe year-long drought.

Beauty is the touch of fabric, cutting it all up and turning it into a work of art (quilt).

Beauty is seeing the result of your efforts turning into a successful delicious reality.

Beauty is watching a kitty dream and seeing sunlight through fur.

Beauty is seeing children in laughter.

Beauty is… simply put… God’s creation. He created us and the world around us. He’s the Creator. He made us in His image. Therefore, we are creators ourselves. To suppress passion and interests is to suppress God himself. We must be careful to not turn them into idols; but, we are to be all that we can be in Him.

Beauty is soul deep – unique to each and every one of us.
1. Take five minutes and just write without criticizing your words, yourself or your story. Just write without worrying if it’s just right or not.
2. Link back here to share your unedited stories.
3. Go visit, read, and compliment the person who shared right before you.

Photo Credits:
  1. Lee Ann; 6/1/2011
  2. Lee Ann; 8/16/2011
  3. Dan; 4/11/2010
  4. Lee Ann; 3/9/2011
  5. Dan; 12/31/2008


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Wordy Wednesday

What is the worst thing about cooking? Baking?



The dirty dishes!

Photo Credit: Dan; 8/13/2011

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

DIY Tuesday: Trash to Treasure (Part III)

Trash to Treasure: Before Pictures
Trash to Treasure: Part II

This project is 95% completed. It just needs a couple more coats of Polycrylic on it and then the handles put on. One last thing I will do in the future is get a protective glass cut for the top of the dresser aka nightstand.

Dresser with the sides and back put on
All ready for priming and painting

Chessie had to come out and check on the dresser

Drawers Primed

Dresser Primed

The dresser has been painted. We still need to put at least one more coat of Polycrylic all over and another two coats on top of the dresser to give it additional protection as I don’t know how long it will be before I get the special glass for the top.
Dear Sister-in-law,

I am so sorry this isn’t finished yet. We honestly had all the intention in the world to get this finished over this past weekend; but, other things interfered with our plans. I know the suspense is killing you. Soon, sister, soon it will be done. Hang in there.

With all my love,

Lee Ann

PS: Ha!

Monday, August 15, 2011

In Honor of "A Pie for Mikey"

I have been following this blog, In Jennie’s Kitchen, for some time now. Jennie does not know me nor I her. I just am a follower of her blog along with many other foodie bloggers.

When she posted for Mikey, it made me cry. It was shocking. To think her husband died so young. I had my suspicions when she posted One Last Dance the day before; but, the post, for Mikey, confirmed my suspicions. I discovered via other bloggers he died from a massive heart attack.

Within that post, She asked bloggy land to “make a peanut butter pie this Friday and share it with someone you love. Then hug them like there's no tomorrow because today is the only guarantee we can count on". The Peanut Butter Pie was Mikey’s favorite.

I am not one of those people who jump on the bandwagon. For example, there are many quilters doing a Farmer’s wife quilt. I love seeing their (the bloggers) blocks and progress; but, I am not inclined to join in the madness. I suppose I like doing my own thing.

However, in this case, Jennie’s right you know? I thought about it and I wondered why we put off making a pie or a cake for the one you love until a birthday or a special occasion? Why not make it when we feel like having some? Or, whenever we have the time to make one? Or, whenever we want to do something special for someone we love? Or, whenever we want to try a new recipe? After all, every day is a special occasion.

So, I decided to make a German Chocolate Snack cake on Saturday. I like baking and cooking on the weekends. Weekdays are tough for me. So, instead of making pie on Friday, I made cake on Saturday. This cake is one Dan mentioned that looked and sounded delicious. He loves German Chocolate cake and I thought, after reading Jennie's post, why not try making it now instead of waiting for a special occasion?

The cake itself turned out very delicious. However, we were not a fan of the “frosting”. The cake part is a keeper. I just need to find a different German Chocolate frosting to put on top. In fact, we ended up scraping off the frosting the next day and making an old standby to put on top. Ha! I still would like to find a really delicious German Chocolate Frosting recipe someday.

Below are a few wonderful pictures taken during the process of making this recipe. I hope you foodie addicts (like me) enjoy them. Note: All pictures, with the exception of the very first one above, were taken by Dan who turned the kitchen into a photography studio. We had a lot of fun. At least, I did.

Melt 1 package (4 oz) of German Sweet Chocolate and 1/4 cup of butter in a saucepan over medium-low heat. Then cool for five minutes.

You'll need to blend in 1 1/2 cups of granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract (after it is cooled).

Add 3 large eggs and 1 cup of Buttermilk.

Combine 2 cups all-purpose flour (I used unbleached), 1 teaspoon of baking soda and 1/4 teaspoon of salt. Add the mixture gradually to the pot stirring until smooth.

Pour batter into a prepared pan (spray with nonstick cooking spray). Bake for 40-45 minutes in a 350*F oven.

I'm not going to bother listing ingredients nor how to put together the topping/frosting as we did not care for it. I believe there are some better recipes out there for this part of the cake.

The below is not really part of the above series; but, you can see we really did scrape off the frosting and put on an old standby. It does not look very appetizing, does it? Ha! But, it is delicious cake.