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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Thanks, Lauren! Ya Done Good!


Do you have one of these? If you don't, you should seriously consider getting one! I received mine as a Christmas gift and hardly a day goes by that I don't use it. They can be expensive, but if you look at the cost per use, it's nothing. And so worth the price! We have dark carpeting in every room--inherited when we bought the house--so I was vacuuming all the time. Now I only vacuum once a week or so. The other times, I start the Roomba doing its thing and I go take a shower. By the time I'm done, so is the Roomba! This is one of the best gifts I've ever received! So much so that I'm contemplating the purchase of Roomba's cousin Scooba to mop the kitchen floor.

Garlic Mashed Potatoes & Beef Bake


1 lb ground beef
1 can cream of mushroom w/ roasted garlic soup
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 16-oz bag frozen vegetable combo (broccoli, cauliflower, carrots), thawed
3 cups hot mashed potatoes (can be instant)

Brown beef and drain. In 2-qt shallow baking dish, mix beef, 1/2 can soup, Worcestershire, and vegetables. Stir remaining soup into potatoes and spoon over beef mixture. Bake at 400 for 20 minutes.

Calling All April Fools!


Tomorrow is the first day of April and you know what that means! Pranks and practical jokes. I found these listed below on a newsletter I receive. I'm not a big jokester, but I did get Darrell one time when I told him I was pregnant! This was not long after our fourth baby (in 5 years, I might add) was born. He about had a heart attack! It was hysterical. Well, I thought so. He wasn't quite as amused as I was. Guess those postpartum hormones were still virulent!

What's your best April Fool's prank? I need some ideas!!



April Fools!

Tomorrow is the classic day of tricks and pranks. While your tricks may be a little more low-key, here are some all-time best April Fool’s Day pranks:

- Pasta on Trees: In 1957, a well-respected BBC news show, Panorama, declared an abundance in an important Swiss crop: spaghetti noodles from spaghetti trees. After including footage of Swiss farmers pulling the fruit off the trees, many viewers called and asked how they might grow their own spaghetti trees.

- You Can Ring This Bell: The Taco Bell Corporation announced to in 1996 that it would be purchasing the historic Liberty Bell and renaming it—as the Taco Liberty Bell. Outraged citizens were only assuaged when Taco Bell asserted it was a joke. When asked about it in a press meeting, White House Press secretary Mike McCurry dryly responded that the Lincoln Memorial had also been sold and would henceforth be called the Lincoln Mercury Memorial.

- Extra Fun(nies): In 1997, comic strip readers opened the funny section and saw that their favorite strips looked different. In a grand move, forty-six comic strip writers had swapped strips for the day. Garfield could be found in Blondie, eating Dagwood’s sandwich, and the Family Circus mother was found, with an oddly Dilbert-like hairdo, telling young Billy that he needed to “work cuter, not harder.”

Sources: museumofhoaxes.com and wikipedia.org



Monday, March 30, 2009

5 Things Tag

Thanks to Lauren for this one!

5 Things I Was Doing 5 Years Ago:
1. Flying back and forth to Oklahoma to visit grandchildren
2. Working from home (still doing that)
3. Celebrating my 28th wedding anniversary
4. Eating out on Friday nights with Connell and Liz
5. Spending more time actually having a life instead of being on the computer!

5 Things I'll Do Tonight:
1. Eat dinner
2. Read
3. Watch too much TV
4. Finally move the clothes from the washer to the dryer
5. Sit in the hot tub

5 Things I'd Do With A Million Dollars:
1. Pay off all debts and retire
2. Help my kids with debts
3. Buy some land and build a house
4. Hire a personal trainer
5. Travel

5 Places I Have Lived:
1. Clarksville, TN
2. Vicenza, Italy
3. Pfafftown, NC
4. Cleveland, OH
5. Mt. Airy, NC

5 Jobs I Have Had:
1. Insurance agent
2. Temp office agent
3. Commissary cashier
4. audio/visual salesperson
5. day care worker

5 Things I Want To Be Doing in 5 Years:
1. Traveling
2. Enjoying grandchildren
3. Celebrating my 38th wedding anniversary
4. Appreciating my paid for house
5. Spending more time with my sweetie

5 People I Tag:
1. Clayton (cuz I know you won't do it)
2. Cam (same as above)
3. Erika (make it 3)
4. Laura
5. Layne

Classic Movie Alert!!

Here's your chance to see the original "Cheaper By the Dozen"! It will air on TCM today at 12:15 central time. This film (not the Steve Martin remake) is based on a true story. Two of the children wrote a book about their family which was later made into this movie. The father was an efficiency expert pioneer--I guess he had to be with 12 kids!

Two of my favorite scenes include when the father instructs the children's new teachers in how to take a bath and when the representative from Planned Parenthood comes to visit!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Silly Boy!

Anytime you get the camera out to take Alexander's picture, he "poses". He actually is a very cute little boy (if I do say so myself), but he seems to believe he has to make a silly face in every picture!





Get Ready---


Thanks to my sweet hubby who likes to buy (and give) gifts early, I have a new digital camera. Our anniversary isn't for another couple of weeks, but he gave it to me anyway. I have long wanted to learn more about photography and seeing things in a new way. The camera helps me do that. Here are a few I took last weekend.






I love the contrast of the bare tree limbs against the blue sky.

Eagles



When we visited Ft. Donelson last weekend, we were fortunate to watch an eagle sitting on a nest. I was amazed at how huge the nest was! It looked like I could stand up in it and still not see over the top. A woman who works at the park told us that the eagles use the nest each year--just keeping adding to it--that's why it's so big.

After watching the nest patiently for a good while, we saw the eagle pop its head over the top. Eventually, it flew to another tree, then back to the nest. Apparently, it was looking for the its partner--maybe time to change egg-sitting duty. The other eagle never appeared while we were there.



It truly was amazing to watch this magnificent bird. If you take the time to visit this area, you may also see blue heron, elk, and bison. It's worth the drive!

Can I Just Say Yea!!!!

I hope that what I read here proves correct. Wouldn't it be wonderful if the majority was on board?

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

A Great Weekend--and a New Toy

This past weekend, some very dear friends came to visit for a long weekend. Chris and Kara had never been to Tennessee before and we were anxious to show them a good time. They arrived on Thursday evening and we had a delicious meal at our favorite Mexican restaurant Manzanillo.

Friday we slept late (well, Kara did!), then we spent the afternoon at Ft. Donelson, a Civil War site near our home. On the way, we treated them to barbeque sandwiches from the gas station on Hwy 12. Sounds strange, I know, but they have the best barbeque in town! We ate at the picnic tables outside the gas station. After an afternoon of walking and site seeing, we stopped for dipped ice cream cones, then ordered pizza and wings for dinner.

The inside of the cabin below.

This is a little cabin troops stayed in.



Saturday was spent at Shopryland (aka Opry Mills). We had a great time shopping and people watching, then had a wonderful dinner at Tony Roma's (they have desserts to die for!). Does eating seem to be a thread in all our activities or is it just me? We went to the Grand Ole Opry, where we saw Vince Gill, Dierks Bentley, Kelly Pickler, among others.





Sunday, we finally let them rest and relax. We watched Oh, Brother, Where Art Thou--one of the dumbest movies ever made, though it is funny at times. Chris had never heard of the movie and kept asking if it had really been shown in the theater and if people really paid money to go watch it! They left for home on Monday morning and we were sorry to see them go. Usually I am ready to get my house back, but we had so much fun together that I hated to see it end.

Can you guess what my new toy is?

Thanks, RedBox (and Laura)

If you like free stuff, you'll love this: sign up for RedBox and get codes for free rentals! I thought I was doing so good by bringing this to my son's attention--then he informed me he's been doing it for over a year! Thanks for sharing, Clayton!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Okay, People--Are You In?

I don't think I'll be doing this, since Darrell will be out of town and I'll have the remote and computer ALL to myself. But I've promised to do it another day. How bout you? Are you in?

http://asoftplacetoland-kimba.blogspot.com/2009/03/step-away-from-computer.html

Here's Your Chance!

Remember the movies I posted about a few days ago? Here's your chance to see a couple of them! Find out what channel TCM is and set your TIVO (or whatever that thing is called now--I actually still use a VCR!) All these times are Eastern, so make adjustments accordingly.

Seven Brides for Seven Brothers airs at 9:15am Friday

I Remember Mama airs at midnight Friday night
A Place in the Sun will show at 8pm Sunday night

When (not if) you watch these, know that I'll be singing along with Millie and all those brothers....and be grateful you're far, far away!



Funny Stuff

Years ago, I had a very funny friend named Cheryl. We were really close in junior high (aka middle school), but drifted apart once we hit high school. After graduation, we each went our separate ways, though I did wonder about her all these years--strike that, make it over the years--surely it hasn't been (gulp) 33!! Almost three years ago, I got a phone call out of the blue. Who could it be but my friend Cheryl! We've caught up some, though we still haven't been able to coordinate schedules so we can actually SEE each other again. Now keeping in touch should be easier. Cheryl has started a blog! And you should read it! I had forgotten how funny she is. Go here to find out for yourself: confessions of a sane white woman.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

I Love To See the Temple

This is a wonderful video put out by my church regarding why we build temples. We consider the temple to be one of the most sacred places on earth and the things that go on in the temple are of the most sacred nature. Everything to do with the temple honors our Father in Heaven and our Savior Jesus Christ. Entrance to the temple is restricted to those who have prepared themselves spiritually to receive the instruction given there. Most other religions have places, ceremonies, and clothing that are precious to them. Mine is no exception. It physically hurts to see others devalue these things that are so very special to me. I hope you'll watch this short video and remember it when you hear negative things about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Friday, March 13, 2009

This was NOT what I needed today!

Reading a friend's blog brought information my waist and rear could well do without. Don't go HERE! I'm telling you--don't! Just. Don't. You'll regret it.

Okay, now that you've gone there, don't blame me. I warned you!

Movie Night

I've mentioned on here several times my affinity for old movies. Several of my favorites have been remade recently and you may have seen them. Whether you have or not, you owe it to yourself to watch the originals. They may be a little cheesy compared to today's versions. The special effects aren't so special, but I still prefer to watch the oldies.

Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, George Clooney....they have nothing on Montgomery Clift, Cary Grant, Clark Gable, Gene Tierney, Claudette Colbert, Maureen O'Hara, and Greer Garson. Their life stories are a lot more interesting, too. Plus they kept their politics to themselves!



Here are ten of my favorites (in no particular order):


1. Seven Brides for Seven Brothers

2. Life With Father
3. The Women
4. Cheaper By the Dozen
5. The Ghost and Mrs. Muir
6. Topper

7. Wuthering Heights
8. That Hamilton Woman
9. Mrs. Miniver
10.I Remember Mama





I hope you'll open your mind and heart to these wonderful movies and give them a try. It'll be worth it!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Bag Tag

I wasn't exactly tagged, but I really was intrigued by the purses I saw posted. So I wanted to share. I know how curious you are about all things Beverly! So, here's what I'm supposed to do:

Show the current handbag I'm using: I actually alternate between two. I've always carried a good-sized purse. With four children and a husband, I'm constantly being asked to "hold this" and "can you keep this in your purse".

This first picture is of the small purse I'm attempting to incorporate into my life. Purchased at Target for $10, it's still in the breaking in period. As you can see, it doesn't hold much. For the most part, I carry my drivers license, Visa card, and any cash I might happen to have. Can't do withouts include a lip gloss, mascara, and powder brush, and a tiny hairbrush. Of course, got to have the cell phone and keys. The zebra case holds my reading glasses and sunglasses (which are the same color blue as my car). The red package is Kleenex and the case with a rubber band around it is my "pharmacy" (aspirin, Beano, sinus pills, etc).



Here's purse #2. A knockoff Dooney and Bourke. I love carrying this since my initial is B and my husband's is D. I knew it was fate that I have this bag as soon as I saw the interlocked D and B. This was a Christmas gift from my husband, so I don't know the price. You can see how much more I carry in the bigger bag! I wouldn't want it weighed. Among these additional items are a flashlight, a small pocket knife, a tiny measuring tape, a Daytimer, checkbook, notepad, and more stuff for the pharmacy. In fact, I have a little makeup bag which serves as the "medical center" for the larger purse. One thing I neglected to put in the photo is my makeup bag. I'm one of those women who carry their entire bag of tricks with them everywhere. I was caught in the rain without my makeup once and had to spend all day looking like a drowned rat. Vowed there and then never to let that happen again.



So there you go. Riveting, isn't it? Funny how interested I was in other people's bags and what they carry with them, but when I wrote mine down, it seemed rather dull. Oh, well. I tag who(m)ever wants to share.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Oh, No!!!!!

The inevitable has finally happened. I've sort of been expecting it, but hoped against hope that the day was farther off. I am beside myself with worry and don't really know what to do from here. I have several options and have sought the guidance of an expert in the matter, but haven't heard back from her yet. I'm hoping she will be able to give me the answer I truly desire and my misery will be short lived.

Oh, did you want to know what my dilemma is? All right, I'll tell you. My beloved flat iron died this morning. Isn't that the saddest thing you ever heard? And just as I was getting ready for church. About half way through my thick head of wavy hair, I realized something wasn't right. It was taking too many passes to get the kinks out. The job wasn't getting done. Luckily, I have a couple of backup flat irons, but they aren't Chis. Just cheapos from Walmart and Sally's. Don't do nearly as good a job. If you have ever used a Chi flat iron, you know what I'm talking about!

Here is a picture before straightening. You can see how desperate my situation is! The only thing that can make me feel better at this point is lots and lots of loving comments. And maybe Girl Scout cookies--if Layne's sweet baby hasn't eaten them all!


Okay, this isn't really me--but you get the idea!

Monday, March 2, 2009

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

The Good:

My only son Clayton proposed to his girlfriend Erika last week and she said yes! They are planning an August wedding. This is my first time being on this side of the aisle, so I need some input on just what is expected of the mother of the groom. I'm beginning to understand that there's more to my duties than just showing up and looking fabulous...

We filled the hot tub back up! Just in time for a light snowfall this weekend. My favorite kind of snow--looks beautiful coming down and doesn't stay around long. Ahh, the bliss of sitting chin deep in 102 degree water, looking up at a clear sky full of stars. Love it!

I've found out that our local university offers several exercise and dance classes for $2 each! The one I'm most interested in is belly dancing. Now all I have to do is work my courage up to actually go to a class. You should have seen the lovely woman I met in the lingerie dept of Walmart who told me about these classes. She was 70 if she was a day and was looking for pretty bras to wear while dancing. She even showed me some moves right there in the store! All I could do was smile and say "you go, girl!". I wish I was that uninhibited.

The Bad:

I've been having trouble posting lately, because I've felt so uninteresting and boring. I've started reading lots of other blogs and those women are such better writers than I am. Guess I've gotten a little intimidated.

We own a small home-based business that is dependent on the auto industry. The economy is starting to affect our income in a negative way and that's scary. Both of us are a little long in the tooth to be looking for new jobs.

The Ugly:

In the South, the word ugly has an additional meaning. If you are grumpy or cranky or just having a bad attitude in general, you might be accused of "being ugly". My mother used to accuse me of this a lot. I used the term on my kids and they would tell me they weren't ugly. I had to assure them that while they didn't look ugly, they certainly were acting ugly. Apparently, I haven't outgrown my tendency to be ugly. Example below:

To borrow from The Original Queen Bee, I did not laugh hysterically when I heard my ex-son-in-law (aka Dimwit) couldn't attend his recent wedding reception because he had the runs! Nor did I find it immensely amusing that his new wife had to attend said reception not wearing her wedding dress and all alone in a new city where she knows no one. I also did not lie to my granddaughter when she asked why I was laughing so hard. I would never do things like this. They are beneath me. (yeah, right--I'm laughing now)
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