Monday, November 22, 2010


My first time cutting into a pomegranate! I've always wanted to buy one, but it seemed so complicated...I mean, any fruit that has an instructions to an "easy open" pamphlet next to it has to be confusing, right?

Well, I'm not planning on this becoming our new favorite fruit or anything, but it is yummy and quite interesting :)

First I cut it into 5 sections as seen above. Make sure and wear your aprons, girls! This juice gets everywhere!

Next I pulled all the arils (fancy pomegranate word for seeds) out of the membrane (another fancy word for rind) and put them in water. The membrane is very bitter and by putting the arils in the water, it separates the yucky stuff from the good stuff ;)

Here is what I was left with.

Then I just strained the water out and...voila! Pomegranate! We have been simply enjoying this fruit by itself, but I plan on trying it on some spinach salad, maybe some mandarin oranges? and someday trying to make some juice.

Fun, yummy, and full of healthiness :) If you were like I, scared to attempt, you should try it!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Stuck on fall.....

I seem to be sooo stuck on fall this year! Glad summer is over (for the first time in my life!) and not really ready for the harsh winter either. BUT I am enjoying every second of our beautiful Georgia fall :)

Growing up in beautiful, Beaufort, SC we didn't see much color change, or even weather change....I have spent countless Thanksgivings at the beach! And even though I dearly miss the lowcountry, I have thoroughly enjoyed this beautiful season.

My Mom sent me these adorable salt and pepper shakers to decorate my table, along with some oak-leave placemats in brown and green. The table has never been graced with such festivity. Thanks Mom!

We have had the pleasure of enjoying some fresh herbs from the "community" garden out back...long story, but basically, you can plant what you want, water when needed...or don't, and take what you want! somehow it has worked out well.

anywho, this is what was left of the herbs after our first frost hit.
Rosemary- which we have tried with chicken...yumm
Basil- with fresh tomatoes makes a delicious spaghetti sauce
Oregano- great on pizza or in calzones
and sage- I haven't used it yet...any suggestions??

Also after our frost, we collected these green tomatoes...
they have been green for months now! seriously! they refused to change colors. So I picked some, hoping to find some recipies to use them in. Would love any suggestions!

We made fried green tomatoes one night...not too crazy about them.
And I found a great recipe for some green tomato and tomatillo salsa!
Hopefully they we will be used and enjoyed.

I was sad to find these little babies, their leaves and stems black and whithered from the frost, with no hope of becoming anything else.
So they will stay babies :(

We have 3 VERY hot peppers....still haven't figured out what they are, but they are full of spicy deliciousness!
2 of the smallest bell peppers I have ever seen
and 1 little Japanese eggplant

ClaireBell and I have been appreciating the outdoors and the opportunity to enjoy all of God's creation. and when I say ALL, I mean it...
she has decided that tasting every bit of creation is the best way to appreciate it ;)

Thank you, Jesus for fall! Thank you for fresh herbs that we can dry and save for the winter, thank you for pecans to make yummy pies, thank you for table decorations and sweet Mommy's to think about, thank you for your creation and for giving us the health and energy to enjoy it every day.

and thank you, sweet Jesus for little ClaireBell's to taste ALL that you have made. Please keep her from getting sick! Amen.

Happy Saturday, friends! Let's be thankful today.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

family fall fun

It was a beautiful Sunday afternoon and I decided to torture my family with a photo shoot! come on, you know you've done it too ;)

Dakota and I got this picture of just the two of us! We just said, "ClaireBell, take a picture of Daddy and Mommy, here's where you press the button"...and viola! Kid's a genius, I just know it. haha...

Unfortunately, my little ClaireBell wanted nothing to do with this so called "fun" trip into the woods, so we got this shot...

little by little, she started doing better....mommy and baby shot

I just L-O-V-E this picture of these two :) you can see her trying to take the pumpkin out of his hands to carry it on her own

finally, they put me in a picture by myself!! now see what I can do for the camera......

This is what we call her "funny face"....she will make it on demand.
All in all, a good day, good pictures and a funny face that I am assured will make you all smile :)

Happy Fall Friends!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Enjoying the Fall

I know, two posts in one day....I had some catching up to do! Enjoy the pics :)

We are enjoying these fall days so much! Playing at the playground, picking pecans, jogging around campus, and praising our Lord for all the beauty around us!

Thank you, Jesus for seasons, for fall, and for my amazing husband and beautiful daughter to share these days with.

wiggle worm strikes again.....oh my sweet clairebell

After a few minutes of silence while doing the dishes, I thought "oh no, its too quiet, where is she?!" I found her stuck in her stroller in the closet!! hahaha

Classic dumping of beads.....

When I asked her what happened, she pointed to the beads on the floor and said, "uh-oh"

Another broken glass....that's four this month!! I'm gonna have to start watching the clearance racks at target for a new set!

Never a dull moment =) But that's ok! Do you have any "uh-oh" stories from this week? Do share :)

Monday, October 4, 2010

God's promise

What a precious reminder of God's promises, His faithfulness and His mercy on us! I spotted this beautiful rainbow last week while ClaireBell and I were walking around campus. I snapped this pic quickly and then ran inside to grab sweaters for both of us ( its been rather chilly here the last few days) the time I got back, it was gone! I wanted to walk down the hill and try to get a picture without all the wires in it, but this is all I have.

It's funny how the first, and usually only thing I think about when I see a rainbow is God's promise to never flood the earth again. But this time, I couldn't help but think about why He flooded the earth, what it took to get Him to that point. I thought of Noah and His steadfast faith in our Lord. Noah was not influenced by the world, he was not swayed by the wickedness of man. He was committed to God, and "found favor in the eyes of the Lord." ---->
Genesis 6:8

I don't know what it was like in Noah's time, but I wonder how much our time now could compare. "Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. The Lord was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart." Genesis 6:5-6. Sound
familiar??? There is wickedness all around us, and every day we have to make the decision to submit to God, and resist the devil.....or be enslaved by our sin.

"I establish My covenant with you; and all flesh shall never again be cut off by the water of the flood, neither shall there again be a flood to destroy the earth....I set My bow i
n the cloud, and it shall be for a sign of a covenant between Me and the earth." Genesis 9:11, 13. God didn't have to make us that promise. He could have said that every time man sinned or a nation turned its back on Him, He would blot them out...but He didn't.

So Next time you see a rainbow, God's bow in the clouds, remember not only His promise to us, but His mercy on us even though we live in a wicked and perverse time. R
emember the faithfulness of Noah, he was a hero of the faith.

Have a wonderful Monday!

Monday, September 27, 2010

wiggle worm

do you have a wiggle worm in your house?? I sure do! This little girl NEVER stops moving! She leaves a trail of clues as to where she's been, and puts her mark on everything she touches....and sometimes, it leaves a mark on her too ;)

what is it about diaper rash cream that tastes good?! it smells just h
orrid...I can't imagine it could have anything tasty in it. my wiggle worm disagrees.

Not only do I have a wiggle worm, I have a climber as well! We were having trouble with her climbing onto the chairs and then onto the I thought I fixed the problem by keeping all the chairs scooted in! Now, she just gets stuck in between the table and chair.

A baby + a box of bows = baby in a box - bows on the floor.

I've determined, I just cannot use this bottom shelf.....she will clear it off as quick as I can put it back together. oh well :) climb away little wiggle worm!!!

The problem with a wiggle worm, a desitin eater, a climber, a box un-loader and a shelf clearer is this.......I have had to become a wiggle worm chaser, a desitin cleaner, a "baby falling" catcher, a box loader, and a shelf organizer!!!

As rewarding as it is to be a mother, it is utterly exhausting em...most of the time. I feel like I can never keep you ever feel that way?? Sometimes she's covered in desitin before I see her, sometimes she falls and I can't catch her, sometimes she ruins pretty boxes, tears movie covers, flushes things down the toilet, breaks glasses, eats bugs....I could go on and on....

so sometimes the dishes don't get done, lunch isn't always ready on time, the bed isn't always made, at any given time there are probably dvd cases scattered on the living room rug, and at this very moment I have at least 3 loads of laundry to do...but God is still good, my baby has survived another day of wiggle worming her away around the house, my husband still loves me and I love him and I know its gonna be OK.

I thank my Jesus for another quiet evening to get caught up on the chores that didn't get done, and reflect on His goodness, mercy and grace on me. when I am weak, He is strong..."thank you Jesus for meeting our needs. thank you that Your grace is sufficient. and thank you for constantly picking me up when I fall."

This post has turned into quite a novel...for those of you who have stuck with me til' now, I applaud you :) just one last thing....

As I put my little one down to sleep tonight, I was reminded of a song my mama used to sing often at bedtimes....

"It's bedtime now and after prayers are said, I kiss my little girl and tuck her in her bed. But before the lights are out she says, 'can you stay a little longer, please?' and though the clothes need folded and there's dishes to do, I think to myself, 'theses days are few' this time spent now will see us through; oh, the lessons learned from a child. I wanna learn all there is to know, 'cause their small for just a little while. Let me have the faith to see through the eyes of a child."

Take the time with your little girls, little boys, little wiggle worms...they will remember, and God will be honored.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

sweet memories......

Can't help but grin at this silly baby face!! She is in the habit of feeding her hair, so headbands come in handy during mealtime =)

It's amazing how quickly a pile of FOLDED laundry can jump back on your "to-do" list, huh?

After this pic was taken, I quietly watched from behind as she very carefully took each piece of clothing and put them into the laundry basket....I just couldn't break her heart by taking it away; she was so proud!

ClaireBell enjoying some of daddy's protein shake after a hard workout. ( for him, of course..hehe) I just love the way she runs...well, crawls to the door as soon as she hears it open! grinning from ear to ear, shouting, "da-da" and pausing mid-crawl to wave her little hand as hard as she can! she loves her daddy :) and so do I!

fried chicken gone......salty

Doesn't this chicken look delicious?? well, looks can be deceiving :(
I've never been much of a "country cooking" kinda girl, but my dear husband just loves it all...fried chicken, biscuits, gravy, mashed potatoes and sweet tea! SO, I decided to be a good wifey and make my man some good ol' Georgia food!

I looked online for a good fried chicken recipe and found one by the one-and-only, Paula Dean! I thought, I can't go wrong with this one! So I followed the recipe EXACTLY! didn't want to mess anything up so i stuck to the plan:
garlic powder
tobasco sauce
and, of course, oil

I cooked this chicken to perfection! Crunchy on the outside, nice and tender on the inside. I was very pleased at what i saw......then i tasted it.

It tasted like I bit into a SALT BLOCK!! I was horrified :( my perfect looking chicken is the worst chicken I've ever tasted in my life! I kindly, hesitantly informed Dakota of the disaster and he came in to try it.....

He so sweetly said, "well, maybe it will be better if we eat it with honey mustard and the potatoes"....or maybe not. It was officially my first un-edible meal as a married woman. :(

Still not exactly sure what happened...just too much salt. The recipe called for 1 Cup of Salt...I should've known that chicken covered in salt would be.....salty.

Monday, August 23, 2010

my baby's 1st birthday

how often has this happened to you?? i started this very happy day off with this find! twins! we eat a lot of eggs in our house, and it always brings a smile to my face to see double-yolks!

"my first baby is having her first birthday today!" i thought to myself, as she lay in our bed, snuggled closely between me and her daddy. i didn't know whether to be happy or sad....happy that we have had one wonderful, crazy, fun, scary, very much rewarding year with our daughter, and sad because she'll never be tiny again :( she has slipped from baby to toddler so quickly!

the making of a butterfly cake........

i started with the mindset of making one double-layer cake, but it ended up turning into two :) just a basic white cake mix to start

ClaireBell enjoyed the results of mommy baking!

so.....the cakes were baked, cut into a butterfly shape and frosted white!
now its time to

after thinking it through more, i should've bought gel icing, colored dusting sugar, and more candies.....but here's what i did with what i had!

Lots of fun! and perfect for a little girl's birthday =) Try it!

More memories from the day..............

What a
joy it is to be a mother, isn't it? It was a day of rejoicing for our family. We are so thankful for our little ClaireBell and the blessing she is to us every day. She is such a reminder of God's goodness and faithfulness.

"Jesus, thank you for little girls, for first birthdays, and for wonderful family to celebrate with."