Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy Birthday America!

                                                           My little Firecrackers!

Hope you all have a wonderful Fourth of July! 

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Here he is:

Our family is growing once again. Introducing "Monkey Joe" born June 20, 2012. He weighed in at a hefty 9 lbs. and 7 oz. and 21.5 in. in length.

June 20th has always been a special day for me. First it was my Grandmothers birthday and also
my brothers anniversary. I have always loved that it was also the first day of Summer. So when I found out that his due date was the 20th, I was very excited. So, I scheduled my c-section for that day.

However, I wasn't the only one who liked that day. At 2:30 in the morning of my scheduled c-section my water broke. So, he came right when he was suppose to. My surgery went great... In fact my nurse just came in and told me all the nurses call me the poster child for c-sections! I am hoping we can leave the hospital earlier then normal. I miss my other little ones.

Here is a picture of two of my three gorgeous men:

Monday, June 18, 2012

Just a few more hours...

In just a few more hours, ok, more like 45 hours, our new little man will be joining our clan. We are so excited to meet him and see his little face.  What will he look like?  Will he look like me, will he look like the other kids, my hubby or his older brother (who doesn't look anything like the rest of us).

We are more then ready here in our home. To the point I think I have actually washed paint off the baseboards because I have scrubbed them so much. Last night My Sweetie was cleaning our carpets and said to me, I was being a bit too obsessive about my house being cleaned. Then I stated something to the fact that I was nesting. His quick response to me was that I have been nesting for the last four years...and I said, I have been pregnant for the last four years! To which we both started laughing.
My bags are packed and the babies clothes are all washed and ready to go. I just pray that the older children will do okay while I am away. I am sure they will be fine with my In-Laws, it's more me. I start missing my kids when I go to the grocery store at night. In fact, if I hear a baby cry at the store, my heart starts to ache every time! I just love my little growing bigger every day family.

I pray my next post that you will be seeing new pics of our new little guy!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Simple Pleasures...

Is there anything better than picking fresh fruit from your own garden? The children picked these fresh raspberries this morning. These are the first of what I hope will be many, many more raspberries.

It was hard for them not to just stand by the bushes and eat them all. But could you blame them?

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Our latest project sneak peak...

This past Winter, My Sweetie and I ponder the many projects that we wanted to accomplish this Spring. A new and bigger deck, a fence, more garden space, landscaping in the back...and the list went on and on. One thing we kept coming back to, is a large playroom and space for the kids.

We will soon be having 4 children being aged four and under and we were desperate for a place for them to play with their toys. We have tried to keep their toys at a minimum over the years and only getting them 2 or 3 toys per Christmas and birthday. However, they still add up and we needed a place for them to be used and to be organized. I have never liked toys in their bedrooms, because I like knowing where everything is located  and organized. So part of our finished basement seemed like the logical choice for their playroom.

The planning started at the beginning of April. We started looking for deals online and picking paint colors. I looked all over Pinterest for ideas and inspiration and found a few I incorporated.  Mostly the room was designed by My Sweetie.  Plus, he added his own technological flair to help keep the kids safe!

Here is just a sneak peak of what we have accomplished so far:

The room is actually 95 percent done, with just a few more shelves and a chalk board to be put in place.  I can't wait for you to see it!

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Today I am celebrating my anniversary to My Sweetheart.  As I look back over the years, I can't help to think about the quote on my brothers wedding invitation from 20 years ago that read, "Today I Marry My Best Friend, The One I Laugh With, Live For, Dream With, LOVE."  I have always loved that quote.  However, it wasn't until I married My Sweetheart that I realized how often I would ponder that quote throughout our days together. 

I am so thankful for My Sweetheart and what a blessing he has been in my life.  When we got married I didn't think I could love someone as much as I loved him.  But as the years have passed us by, I learned I was wrong.   He has made all my dreams come true and I grow deeper in love with him daily.  My heart aches for him while he is away at work and I still get excited when I hear the garage door open and see him walk through the door. 

He has made my world complete.

Thank you my love and Happy Anniversary.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012


Mornings around the cottage tend to be set to a slower pace. Sissy boo (3) gets up early with me and we head out to water the gardens. She waters the flowers or helps pull weeds. I more or less supervise.

Recently someone asked Sissy boo what she did with a scoop, she quickly answered, "Help Mommy work in the dirt!" I love that answer, because it's something just the two of us do together. She even planted all the veggies this year.

One of her favorite things to do in the mornings is to pick ripe peas. While she was the one that planted them, she has also been the only who has been enjoying them. Sitting on the deck with a big bowl of sugar snap peas has been her breakfast of choice for the last few days.

Mornings like this make my heart full... I am truly blessed.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Scent of Spring

For the last few weeks, I have had a vase full of lilacs in my kitchen window. The scent has permeated the house in almost a cleansing fashion.

However,I have had my doubts about our little lilac bush. For the past three years,I have watched my little bush stay the exact same size, small with just a few blooms. So this year, I had given up hope of getting the large lilac bush I saw in my gardening books. I even did a bit of research to find out what type we had. We even talked about moving the bush into a sunnier location.

One day after work, my Hubby came inside and said you have got to come out here and look at the lilac bush. Something had happened this year, it was now three times as large and full of blooms. The blooms are so fragrant I can be in the very back of the house and still smell them.

Needless to say, I have enjoyed every moment of its beauty and fragrance this year!

Monday, March 12, 2012

Menu Plan Monday

So, I am sitting here with My Honey tonight watching my favorite movie Notting Hill in between commercial breaks of his favorite movie Braveheart planning our menu for the week. As we sit and chat about our menu, he says to me, "Do you remember when you used to blog, and make up those great menu plans. We always had really yummy stuff". I just laughed at him, because I always make a menu plan. I just don't publish it. I have honestly been trying not to get on the computer as much to focus on my family. Oh well...

So here you go my love:

Tuesday: Breakfast for dinner

Wednesday: *Baked Sweet and Sour Chicken with brown rice

Saturday: Corned Beef and Cabbage (Happy Saint Patrick's Day)

Sunday: Chinese Take-Out For Moo Moo's First Birthday. (She loves lo mein)

*New recipes to us.

Hope you all have a wonderful week. Lori

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Seabrook Vegetable Beef Soup

This recipe is my Mom's recipe and taste almost extacly like my Grandmother's famous vegetable soup. I love this soup and I don't make it nearly as often as I should. It taste even better the next day and also makes a ton of leftovers.

Chuck Roast (any size will do)
½ small head of cabbage
1 medium onion
3-4 stalks of celery- chopped
2-3 carrots- chopped
1 lg. can of green beans
1 lg. can of tomatoes-chopped
1 lg. can tomato sauce
½ bag of frozen corn
2-3 potatoes-chopped

2-3 Tbls. chili powder
Garlic Salt, Salt and Pepper to Taste
1. Fill pan about 1/3 full with water and cook Chuck Roast until tender (2-3 hours).
2. Remove roast from pan, remove fat and chunk into
pieces and return to beef stock.
3. Add cabbage, onions, celery and carrots and
cook for 15-20 minutes.
4. Add green beans, tomatoes, tomato sauce, corn
and potatoes and add seasoning. Cook
until potatoes are tender.
Perfect for a cold winter's day.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day

As a romantic at heart, I love Valentine's Day. In years past, I have bought large gifts for the kids and hubby, but I wanted to do something a bit different this year. I am trying to simplify not only the kids toys but our budget! This year, I just got little heart cookies and will have a special dessert after dinner tonight for the kids.

For my hubby, the kids and I have made cards and I am making him his favorite dinner. He loves this meal so much and asks me for it every week, but since it's kinds of expensive, I never make it. In fact, I don't think I have made it in almost a year. So, I am hoping he will be surprised.

I hope you all are having a wonderful Valentine's Day!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Menu Plan for the week of February 13-19

Here is our menu for the week of Valentine's Day:

Monday: Takeout (it was snowing and didn't make it to the store, so hubby stopped and got us takeout.)

Tuesday: Chipotle Tamale Pie and Red Velvet Cake (the hubby's favorite meal)

Wednesday: Spaghetti (meatless)

Thursday: BBQ Roast Chicken with Sweet Potatoes

Friday: Blue Cheese Stuffed Pork Chops ( I have been dying to try this recipe for months...and it cheese!)

Saturday: Turkey Burgers with red onion jam and oven baked fries

Sunday: Seabrook Vegetable Soup (recipe to come later in the week)

Have a lovely week!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

The Stork is Bringing....

We recently found out that our little number four is going to be a BOY! Boy oh Boy, we are really excited. With two little girls and one little guy, having another boy in the house will even the playing field.

I still can't imagine what our new little guy will be like. I remember when I first saw Double D, he wasn't what I was expecting. First of all, he had blonde hair and blue eyes. Coming from two brown haired, brown eyed people, it was a shock. But after my shock subsided, pure love flowed from my heart for my little guy.

Also, being an ultra girlie girl, I was worried that I would have a hard time adjusting to boy things. But now, I can't imagine what my home would be like without the trains and dinosaurs all over the place! I love having a little boy.

Now our dilemma, the name game. We are having a hard time coming up with the perfect little boy name. Naming our three other little ones have been easy and they came rather quickly. However, we do have guidelines for naming our children. No trendy names, boys have to be Biblical names and all our children have to have names with several nicknames. Since I was named Lori...and there is no way to shorten it or it have a nickname, I wanted to give my children options with their names.

We are very excited to meet our new little guy, just a few more months and he will be here!

Monday, February 6, 2012

Meal Plan for the Week of February 6-11

My menu for this week includes one of my favorite things: Blue Cheese! Oh how I love the stuff. I try my best to stay away from it while I am pregnant, but sometimes, it just gets the best of me.
I seriously crave the stuff. Plus, it doesn't help that my kids love the blue cheese crumbles. Just yesterday, Double D asked for it to go along with his cherry tomatoes.
However, the best blue cheese I have ever had, one that my husband and I still talk about 5 years later is called Roaring Forties Blue Cheese. Oh my word, is it delish. We had it on a wedge salad at some restaurant in Mississippi a long time ago, and still wish we could get our hands on some. Roaring Forties Blue Cheese is made by the Kings Island Dairy, on an island just north of Tasmania, Australia. The cheese is named after the infamous Roaring Forties gales which frequently bring westerly winds of more than 100 kms per hour to the island which lies on 40 degrees latitude.This gourmet cheese is a handcrafted cow's milk cheese made from milk from Australian cows. The Roaring Forties Blue is a full flavored blue with a sweet, mild, creamy and slightly nutty character, a rich mouth feel and good aftertaste. It is so delish.
Now that I am sitting here drooling, here is the menu for this week:
Monday: Subway (today was a busy, work day)
Tuesday: Cobb Salad with Homemade Blue Cheese Dressing (leftover I made earlier in the week)
Wednesday: Turkey Burgers with Baked Potato Skins (craving the baked potato skins)
Thursday: Clam Chowder and fruit salad
Saturday: Papa John's (thank you for the free meal Papa John's)

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Super Bowl Menu

I look forward to making food for our little family Super Bowl Party every year. Our Super Bowl Menu for this year is:

Pico De Gallo and Guacomole from the Pioneer Woman
Franks Original Hot Sauce Baked Buffalo Wings with Homemade Blue Cheese Dressing
Baked wings for the kids
Fruit Salad
Homemade Lime Sherbert

Go Giants!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Spring Mantel

Ok, I know it's not Spring JUST yet, but when we have had days in January that are in the 70's, my mind tends to wander that way. Plus, I live for Springtime, and the flowers. So, I try to hurry up through the dark and dreary days of Winter.

Here is my mantel that I put together for the Spring. I am trying to simplify things a bit this year. After Christmas, I was tired of the dark colors and wanted to really lighten things up a bit. So I went with fresh creams and sages. Dark colors bring me down, so I wanted something light and happy. Even the wreath has a bit of sage in it, and looks better in person then the photo. But I love how every thing matches the curtains.

Looking forward to seeing the sun again, Lori

Monday, January 23, 2012

Menu Plan Monday

Just another typical menu for the week, but I am trying three new recipes. Since this is actually Wednesday that I am blogging (just to get it in the system), I can say the Chicken Divan and the Chicken and Wild Rice Soup were wonderful. Huge hits in the house. I would add the links, but this Mama is tired...and I don't feel like it. Ha ha.

Here is this weeks menu:

Monday: Chicken Divan (not the cream of soup kind either...ick) This was really good. Made great leftovers!

Tuesday: Brenner

Wednesday: Homemade Panera's Chicken and Wild Rice Soup (this was delish and made a TON)

Thursday: Cobb Salad with The Pioneer Woman's Homemade Ranch Dressing (family favorite)

Friday: Spaghetti

Saturday: The Pioneer Woman's Mushroom Steak (the hubby's favorite)

Sunday: Johnny Marzetti (classic comfort food)

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

A Little Family Update

Little Missy Moo turns 10 months old today! What a joy she has been in our lives. On a daily basis My Sweetie says, if we could have 27 more just like her, we would. So, we are trying! Ha ha. She has been the best baby and is always happy and sweet. She is the best little eater too. Always wanting whatever we are eating and always wanting to be with the big kids. She is loved by all who come in contact wit her. We can not imagine our lives with out her little chubby legs speed crawling across the floor. We love and adore her.

Sissyboo is three and half years old and is full of life! She is quirky, so she always keeps us on our toes. She always has to have a dress on, a hat and shoes. She is often found playing with her favorite Buzz Lightyear toy. She loves him so much and he is never far away. She loves to work puzzles and draw! I often find rainbows drawn on windows, chalkboards and her mega doodle board. She is such a happy go lucky little girl. We just adore her sweetness and I always enjoy her willingness to help me around the house or with the baby.

My little Double D is not quite two and a half. He is such a Mama's boy. He loves hugs and giving hugs. However, he is all boy when it comes to his favorite toys. He is most often found running around with a train or a car in his hand. He loves me to read to him and count out things in books. He can say all of his ABC's and identify them. He knows all his colors and can count and is quickly learning how to add. He loves learning and it seems to be pretty easy. He already knows some words in French. His favorite little toy is his Brown Teddy Bear named Brown Ted. He can not sleep with out him. My favorite thing is that he loves for me to rock him before bed time. I love how he snuggles with me as we rock and we always have a sing-a-long. He asks me to sing Bicycle Built for Two at least three times as we rock. He is a sweet natured little guy.

My Sweetie is doing very well, just busy with work. I can not imagine my life with out him. We are just happy as clams raising our little family. He often says to me that he can't imagine why people wouldn't want children. My thoughts exactly. We often say if we would have met in our 20's we would have had 15 children by now. I am just so thankful for him and that he is my helpmate in every sense of the term. He is always eager to help me and seeks ways to make my life and work at home easier. I love him more every day!

That is what is going on with my little family at the beginning of 2012. Looking forward to seeing what this new year holds for us.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Menu Plan Monday

Remembering the great Martin Luther King Jr.

Hope you all have had a wonderful long weekend and are ready to start a fresh new week.

Here is the menu plan for this week (some are the same as last week, since I didn't get to them due to an illness in the family):

Monday: Turkey Burgers with Roasted Carrots

Tuesday: BBQ Chicken with The Neely's Sweet and Spicy Coleslaw

Wednesday: Homemade Sloppy Joes and potatoes

Thursday: Homemade Panera Broccoli Cheese Soup

Friday: Turkey Taco Lettuce Wraps with fresh salsa and chips

Saturday: Chicken Fricassee (My hubby was watching America's Test kitchen and thought this would be good. It looks delish!)

Sunday: Bowtie Lasagna

Have a wonderful and glorious week,

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

What I could not live with out...

Being a Mommy to three little ones means that there are always little messes to clean up. So when I discovered Hoover Deep Cleansing Detergent I was overjoyed. At the time when My Sweetie purchased our steam cleaner for the carpets he also purchased the detergent. So before we steam clean the carpet and furniture I used to make a spray bottle with the detergent highly diluted and pre-treat the stains. Now I keep a spray bottle filled with water with a cap full of the detergent mix on hand. I am always amazed that just a little amount of the detergent could remove hard set in (when did that get there and just what the heck is that) stains.

Whether is is an entire bottle of soy sauce on brand new carpet or red juice spilled on the fabric dining room chairs, Hoover Deep Cleansing Detergent has removed them all!

Monday, January 9, 2012

Menu Plan Monday

After having a wonderful weekend with the hubby and kiddo's, it's time to start another week. Here is my meal plan for this week:

Monday: Chicken and Dumplings

Tuesday: Ham and Biscuits with Hollandaise Sauce and Fruit Salad

Wednesday: Turkey Burgers with Red Onion Jam

Thursday: Breakfast for Dinner: Waffles with fresh fruit

Saturday: Pork Tenderloin, Green Beans

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Bacon Wrapped Water Chestnuts

I was home last week to visit my family and made this little appetizer for our New Year's Eve family get together. These are perfect little appetizer that are surprisingly easy but delicious.

1 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 cups ketchup
1 pound bacon
2 (8 ounce) cans water chestnuts

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
In a medium-size mixing bowl, combine brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, and ketchup.
Cut bacon in half. (The original recipes doesn't call for this, but I partially precook the bacon for about 10 to 15 minutes. This way they are still pliable, but the fat can be drained off).

Wrap one slice of bacon around each chestnut. Secure the bacon with a toothpick. Arrange the water chestnut wraps in a 9x13 inch baking dish. Pour the sauce over the water chestnut wraps and bake for 10 to 15 minutes.
Remove from water chestnut wraps from the oven. Let cool for 5 to 7 minutes.


Thursday, January 5, 2012

Oh January, you do this to me every year!

Poor yourself a cup of coffee, pull up a chair and grab your latest seed catalog. I am not sure about you, but right after Christmas, my mind starts thinking about warmer weather, spring time flowers and my garden beds. We have had unusually warm weather this week, with it being in the mid 60's today and again tomorrow and it makes me want to run out to the garden and start planting.

I am no sure why, but in January, gardening gets under my skin. Several years ago, my husband and I were talking right after Christmas and he looked at me and asked what we should plant this year. I love him for caring...and knowing that when January rolls around, I have already started planning and dreaming.

One day, our dream is to have enough land to plant an orchard, a small vineyard and have a large garden and even a few animals. I would like chickens and maybe a sheep or two. But for now, we live in the suburbs where I like to pretend I am on a farm with my little garden beds in the back yard.

Have you started planning your spring garden? So far, I know am planting tomatoes and corn, and will add to my herbs in the front.

Here are my favorite NON-GMO seed catalogs and websites to help you with gardening: I have used Baker Seeds in the past with amazing results!

Genesis 1:12
The land produced vegetation: plants bearing seed according to their kinds and
trees bearing fruit with seed in it according to their kinds. And God saw that
it was good.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

No New Year's Resolutions for Me...

I have never made a New Year's resolutions. Maybe it's because I have never met anyone who has kept one! So instead of making a resolution, I want to try twelve new things in the twelve months of 2012. One new thing per month.

Here is my list of twelve new things would like to do or try this year (however, no skydiving will be involved):

January: Plant a herb garden in the kitchen window sill

February: Learn to make crepes

March: Spend time learning to take better photographs

April: Visit the St. Louis Botanical Gardens

May: Grow corn in the garden

June: Give birth to my fourth child (Hey... it is something I have NEVER done)

July: Put up a clothes line (I am sure the neighbors will love this. But I will take it down at night before they get home from work)

August: Learn to make sky high southern style biscuits

September: Make my own apple butter

October: Make Halloween costumes for the kids

November: Learn to make homemade noodles (like my Mom used to make)

December: Make my own wrapping paper

Be always at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let each new year find you a better man. ~Benjamin Franklin

Monday, January 2, 2012

Meal Plan Monday

In this new year, I am looking for recipes that are inexpensive but also make leftovers for lunch the next day. Here is the first menu of the new year:

Monday: Roast Chicken and Green beans

Tuesday: Chicken Quesadilla's

Wednesday: Panera Bread's Cream Cheese Potato Soup

Thursday: Beef and Noodles

Friday: Pizza Bites

Saturday: Sesame Chicken with Broccoli Stir-Fry

Sunday: Dinner out with the family at Outback Steakhouse