Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Book Review x 2

Twilight and New Moon- by Stephenie Meyer

So I just finished reading book 2 of the Twilight series. I have put off these books for a couple reasons. First, I never really got into Harry Potter and I am clumped these books in that category and second if on the off chance I loved the books I wanted to make sure I had the time to really read them. So 2 weeks I finished my last book on my Kindle and decided I needed a change in my recent reading genre...I went for Twilight! I am so glad I waited until I had the first I thought " I mean it is good, but I am not addicted" Now after reading the second one and seeing the first movie, it is safe to say I REALLY LOVE these books, I am starting the 3rd one this week. It is just a nice change of pace in fantasy land. If you haven't read them, wait until the time is right and then pick them up! If you have read them all I have to say is I LOVE Edward...haha!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Blog Stalking

As many of you are learning, I am a blog stalker! It is my new favorite thing to is amazing to me how much "stuff" is out there and how many ideas I get from other people. It just reminds me how measly my blog is! I put up some recipe and crafting blogs that I check on a regular basis, they are on the right side of my blog! Hope you enjoy them as much as me and let me know what your favorite ones are too!

Cauliflower Salad- Sorry No Picture

I made this salad last weekend when I had visitors. It is so yummy. I think it tastes best when you let it sit overnight, just make sure you don't mix it until you are going to serve it. You can substitue yellow onions for red. It is easy and yummy! Enjoy!

Cauliflower Salad Recipe
Source: Linda Franklin (My mother in law)

1 large head iceberg lettuce
1 large red onion
1 large head cauliflower
1 pound bacon fried crisp and crumbled into small pieces
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons salt
Parmesan cheese(the kind in green container) for sprinkling over the top
1 cup Mayonnaise( I like Hellmann's because it seems to hold up and not get so watery

Directions: Place in layers as follows in a very large bowl one you can cover to put in frig. Break lettuce into bite size pieces,place in bottom of the bowl, do the same with the cauliflower layer on top of lettuce,dice onion spread over cauliflower,then sprinkle crumbled cooled bacon over the onion, Spread mayonnaise like you are icing a cake over the top layer, sprinkle top with Parmesan cheese, sugar,and salt. Place in the frig up to 24hours( can be served sooner) Mix well,just before serving but not to much because salad will get limp.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Love is all around...

Happy Valentine's Day! As I reflect on the meaning of this Hallmark Holiday it just reminds me of the constant feeling of love Mark and I are surrounded by. How blessed are we to be surrounded by family and friends who show acts of love on a daily basis. How lucky are we to be in a loving marriage. We had a busy weekend, but all I feel is love this Sunday night...For example

1. We got to go out for sushi Friday night with another couple...Sushi is one of my favorites
2. Saturday morning I got to bake some yummy treats for our guests.
3. I got to babysit my nephews Saturday afternoon, it was mainly during their nap time, but Evan the youngest is teething so he kept waking up, so I got to hold him for 2hours and watch him sleep.
4. Alex and Evan, my nephews bring me so much joy, how grateful I am my brother and sister in law (Tim and Shonda) let them be apart of my life so much
5. Speaking of Tim and Shonda, we always have such a good time together and we get along so well. There is nothing like your big brother still wanting to take care of you!
6. My other brother Matt and Lauren has their twins this week, my entire family was able to come and visit this weekend
7. I got to see my sister and talk about her wedding plans
8. We had a game night last night, Marks brother Dave and wife, Heather came over. We stayed up late playing games and drinking wine...we broke out in tears because we were laughing so hard at least 5 times
9. Mark and I got to lounge around most of the day today, we took a nap together on the couch=heaven!
10. Mark had my favorite polish food for dinner tonight...he is so thoughtful

How can you not feel the love after all of those things...Being surrounded by love couldn't have come at a more perfect time...Happy Valentine's Day! Hope you feel the love around you!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Giving Thanks...

You simply will not be the same person two months from now after consciously giving thanks each day for the abundance that exists in your life. And you will have set in motion an ancient spiritual law: the more you have and are grateful for, the more will be given you.
-Sarah Ban Breathnach, Simple Abundance

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Lillian and Diana

February 8th 2010 My two nieces entered the world. It was a long pregnancy for my brother Matt and his wife Lauren. I am so happy that these girls were healthy with no complications. She had a csection at 9:00 at night, we were all at the hospital waiting. I can't describe the feeling in the waiting room when we got news they were born and healthy...Even more so when they announced their names. They had been keeping it a secret from us. Lillian Jane and Diana Madelyn are special for so many reasons, they were honor of Lauren's parents who both passed away in December. Her dad;s initials were LJ, hence Lillian Jane and her mom's name was Dianne Magdelyn, hence Diana Madelyn. It was truly memorable and I feel so blessed to have been a part of it. The miracle of life, is truly a miracle. Even though I am surrounded by it daily, it never fails to hit home. I feel extremely reflective on life and remembering and making the important things a priority on a daily basis. I am sure I will continue to enjoy these two little blessings, as they live about 10 minutes from Mark and I. Many more pictures to come.... I am smiling ear to ear!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Nutter Butter-Banana Pudding Trifle

I made this recipe this weekend from Southern Living....YUMMY! It was so good! We thought the nutter butters would overtake the dish, but they didn't! My only advice is let this sit overnight, the cookies get soft and it is even better! MMM!


Prep: 35 min., Cook: 20 min., Stand: 30 min., Chill: 2 hr. This homemade pudding is divine, economical, and uses on-hand ingredients. The pudding has thickened enough when a distinct trail is left in the mixture when you stir with a spoon. The cookies will soften the longer the dessert chills.

Yield: Makes 8 to 10 servings

3 cups milk
3 large eggs
3/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons butter
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
5 medium-size ripe bananas
1 (1-lb.) package peanut butter sandwich cookies
2 cups sweetened whipped cream
Garnishes: peanut butter sandwich cookies, dried banana chips, fresh mint sprigs
1. Whisk together first 4 ingredients in a large saucepan over medium-low heat. Cook, whisking constantly, 15 to 20 minutes or until thickened. Remove from heat; stir in butter and vanilla until butter is melted.

2. Fill a large bowl with ice. Place saucepan in ice, and let stand, stirring occasionally, 30 minutes or until mixture is thoroughly chilled.

3. Meanwhile, cut bananas into 1/4-inch slices. Break cookies into thirds.

4. Spoon half of pudding mixture into a 3-qt. bowl or pitcher. Top with bananas and cookies. Spoon remaining pudding mixture over bananas and cookies. Top with sweetened whipped cream. Cover and chill 2 to 24 hours. Garnish, if desired.

Note: For testing purposes only, we used Nabisco Nutter Butter® Sandwich Cookies. For photography, we divided mixture between 2 (1 1/2- to 2-qt.) wide-mouthed pitchers.

Shortcut Nutter Butter®-Banana Pudding Trifle: Omit eggs, sugar, flour, and butter. Substitute thawed extra creamy whipped topping for sweetened whipped cream. Reduce vanilla to 1 tsp. Place 3 cups milk and vanilla in large bowl; add 2 (3.4-oz.) packages vanilla instant pudding mix. Beat with an electric mixer at medium speed 2 minutes or until thickened; let stand 5 minutes. Stir in 1 (8-oz.) container sour cream. Proceed with recipe as directed in Steps 2 through 4.

Note: For testing purposes only, we used Jell-O Vanilla Instant Pudding and Pie Filling and Cool Whip Extra Creamy.

Southern Living, FEBRUARY 2009

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Book Review

The Happiness Project:

Gretchen Rubin had an epiphany one rainy afternoon in the unlikeliest of places: a city bus. "The days are long, but the years are short," she realized. "Time is passing, and I'm not focusing enough on the things that really matter." In that moment, she decided to dedicate a year to her happiness project.In this lively and compelling account of that year, Rubin carves out her place alongside the authors of bestselling memoirs such as Julie and Julia, The Year of Living Biblically, and Eat, Pray, Love. With humor and insight, she chronicles her adventures during the twelve months she spent test-driving the wisdom of the ages, current scientific research, and lessons from popular culture about how to be happier.Rubin didn't have the option to uproot herself, nor did she really want to; instead she focused on improving her life as it was. Each month she tackled a new set of resolutions: give proofs of love, ask for help, find more fun, keep a gratitude notebook, forget about results. She immersed herself in principles set forth by all manner of experts, from Epicurus to Thoreau to Oprah to Martin Seligman to the Dalai Lama to see what worked for her—and what didn't.Her conclusions are sometimes surprising—she finds that money can buy happiness, when spent wisely; that novelty and challenge are powerful sources of happiness; that "treating" yourself can make you feel worse; that venting bad feelings doesn't relieve them; that the very smallest of changes can make the biggest difference—and they range from the practical to the profound.Written with charm and wit, The Happiness Project is illuminating yet entertaining, thought-provoking yet compulsively readable. Gretchen Rubin's passion for her subject jumps off the page, and reading just a few chapters of this book will inspire you to start your own happiness project.

I just finished this book and I LOVED it...It was very inspiring and very REAL. The author didn't make any huge changes her in life, but tiny things she thought could boost her happiness. Her number one rule was to "Be Gretchen" meaning be herself. She made these changes, and called them resolutions instead of goals. She was very inspiring. As one of her resolutions she started a blog with a lot of information

The website is the