Some days we need our heads examined

Some days I think we need our sanity checked! Yesterday was one of those days! The alarm went off at 4:30am. Yes, you read that correctly. Don’t worry, I didn’t get out of bed until 5. And that was funny in itself because I asked hubs what time it was and he said, “I know you are but you need to get up.” He thought I said I was tired….

Yesterday was a home Chiefs game.

Another fun story, the night before Grady called and asked if we knew anyone that would like to go to a Chiefs game because they had an extra ticket. We called Memaw and asked her if she’d like to go to a Chiefs game. She said, Well I’ve never been to a baseball game so it sounds like fun. We all died laughing and said, well after tomorrow (meaning yesterday) you still won’t have gone to a baseball game. She meant to say football and accidentally said baseball. We teased her all day. Woops!

Anyway, back to yesterday morning… This is what a lot of our drive looked like. And once it started lighting up… it started raining. And boy was it ever so cold!

We rode up with Jared and met up with the other clan at IHOP in Belton, then piled in to their vehicles and headed on to the Chief’s stadium. Jared was picking on SW. Either that, or it was snowing in IHOP

And as we all know I take pictures of food… Jared ordered this… Chicken fried steak, eggs over easy and hashbrowns.


Thanksgiving 2015

If there’s one thing that hubby and I have come to love to do, it’s preparing a Thanksgiving turkey. Obviously if we go somewhere, that’s great too, but when we get the opportunity, we jump on it.

This year was one of those years. So a couple weeks before Thanksgiving we made out our menu, planned out our plan of execution, made out the shopping list, and cleaned house. Cleaning house included rearranging some too… we invited 16 people to our humble little abode so we needed to make sure we had room to set up tables. Easy Peasy! Yup, Abug was helping daddy move the old desk out of the living room :).

We were able to get Tbug on Tuesday night. Tuesday afternoon Abug and I started working on one of the desserts, a recipe that my aunt makes when we go to her house. This cake is awesome! Chocolate, chocolate ganache, a praline topping, what more could you ask for? Oh yeah, there were like 6 other options for Thanksgiving…. (and ignore my fashion sense, remember, there’s a reason I’m not a fashion blogger!)


Candied Pecans

Can you believe we’re at Thanksgiving week? Didn’t we just ring in the New Year? This year has flown by. In the last couple days I have been putting together a document on Christmases and as we’re approaching my favorite time of the year, between Thanksgiving and New Years, I’ve been a scrooge the last 3 or 4 years at Christmas time. How the heck does that happen? I wish I had an answer but I don’t. Maybe this year will be better? Here’s to hoping!

My mom laughs at hubby and me because we write our Thanksgiving game plan out with courses, how long they cook, at what temperature they cook and even when we need to start working on them to get them in the oven at the correct time.

One of the recipes we’re making this year is a Tennessee Whiskey Cake with Candied Pecans. Hubby was going to buy some candied pecans, but I told him I would find a recipe and make my own so that’s just what I did yesterday… made my own candied pecans. Can I tell you how easy they were because wow, they were! The hardest part was I accidentally dropped my egg yolk into the egg white I was separating out and broke it while I was at it. Bummer!

That just meant I had to start over. Seriously, separating the egg white from the egg yolk is the hardest part of this recipe.

You drop the white into a mixer (or do it by hand, I was being lazy), bring to a frothy white, add brown sugar, fold in the Pecans, spread on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and bake in a 175˚ oven for an hour and a half. And…. then you have Candied Pecans.


Bacon Wrapped Turkey

In 2012 I was surfing the internet one day and found a recipe for a Bacon Wrapped Turkey. I knew that we were going to be cooking Thanksgiving again this year so I shot the recipe to hubby and asked what he thought. He read through it and said he was in. So the next task was gathering the ingredients.

We’ve made it 2 years now and plan on making it again this year. (last year hubs thought he’d do it but smoked it instead of the oven. Then we forgot our bacon blanket….)

The Turkey

This recipe is for an 18-20lb turkey but extremely easy to adjust for bigger or smaller. And make sure that if you’re using a frozen turkey you give ample time to defrost it!
What you’ll need:
A large plastic bag (optional, it’s just used for the brining process)
A platter or pan that fits the turkey in the fridge (I use a big stock pot and no bag and get along fine)
Kitchen twine
A roasting pan that fits the turkey (and fits in your oven. Check, this is important!)
A probe-style meat thermometer.
A turkey (remember, if it’s frozen, give it ample time to defrost!)
Lots of Kosher Salt
1 1/2 pounds bacon
1/2 pound butter
Fresh herbs: sage, thyme, oregano, parsley, marjoram, rosemary
Roasting Vegetables: carrots, celery, onions, apples
Brining the turkey:
Dry Brine the turkey. It works great and is super simple. We learned don’t brine the turkey more than 24 hours in advance or it gets too salty. One year we salted it Monday night and wow, the turkey was way to salty and my husband salts his food and he kept claiming that it was too salty. Remove all the interior parts from the bird.  Discard them or use them for stock, or the giblets for gravy.  Wash the bird well, inside and out. Place the bird in your brining bag or pot of choice.  Rub kosher salt all over the turkey, inside and out.  Use a lot of salt.  Wash your hands. Put the turkey in the fridge for up to 24 hours. Thoroughly wash the sink you rinsed the turkey in and your hands.

For the Butter:

You can make this up to a week in advance to help with time on Thanksgiving day, especially if you have to get up at the crack of dawn for a noon lunch. We eat in the evening so there isn’t as much of a push but we still make the butter in advance.

In a food processor,  add 1/2 lb raw bacon slices, 1/2 lb butter and generous handfuls of the herbs (sage, thyme, oregano, parsley, marjoram, rosemary). I don’t have exact measurements we use for each of the herbs, just play around with it, we do every year. haha. Place the lid on the food processor and blend together until it makes a smooth paste.

Now if you’re going to store, place in an airtight container.

Preparing turkey day of:


My Social Book – Project 365

Last year I started out on my Project 365 journey. I really felt like I set myself up for failure, but I didn’t fail, I succeeded! Woot Woot. Do people really say Woot Woot…. ha!

Anyway one of my goals was if I completed my Project 365 I either wanted to print all pictures and place in a photo album or I wanted them printed in a book. I didn’t care which but I didn’t want them to go to die on facebook, my blog, and my computer.

When I completed my project, I went on the hunt to print my pictures. I had the hardest time trying to decide which program/company to use. Then I heard about Social Book.

I hooked them up to my Facebook page, to the exact folder I wanted and bam, my book was ordered! I could have chosen a time frame, etc, but I wanted just my Project 365 printed.

I made mention the other day we were fighting with our mail person… Well this kind of started it. My dogs eat packages. I’ve mentioned this as well… ugh!

So when my first book showed up in the mail, it was placed where my dogs could find it and bam, they ate it. Luckily it was insured or something because the wonderful people at Social Book were willing to replace my book and FINALLY it showed up!


How to: Make a Travel Map

I absolutely LOVE to travel. And I even used to think I was a world traveler. I’m not although I have one stamp in my passport that expired 3 years ago. That’s something right?

Anyway one of my goals is to travel to at least all 50 states. So far I’ve been to:

  • Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia,

That’s 27 out of 50 for those of you who are counting. And yes I can count, even though I’m not a Math Major, I’m an English Major :).

So anyway I decided I wanted to get a map and display where my family and I had traveled. We pondered how many colored pins we’d need. Do we do a you, me, them or an us or a family? Do we count before marriage, after marriage, Tbug’s travels with her mom? That’s when we decided that all four of us would have our own color pin, we’d include travels before and after marriage and we’d include traveling Tbug had done with her other family. My pin is purple (go figure, right Liss). Tbug is blue. Hubby’s is green. Abug is a rose pink color.

So if you’re crazy like me… then this is what you need to make your map too.

  • Map. I went with a 50″x32″. My husband thought I was nuts. Maybe I was!
  • What you’re going to put the map on. I went with a 4’x3′ bulletin board. It was a little taller than my map and not quite as long but I’ll address that.
  • Headliner & Carpet Adhesive or other adhesive.
  • Pins to mark travel destinations.
  • Scissors
  • Heart to mark where home is (optional)


The Under Dog

Why is it so hard as individuals to admit defeat? Have I been defeated? Well, the answer is technically no, not yet.

Growing up I’ve always had a fighting spirit. I always knew I could do better and I was always willing to strive for better. I didn’t have to be the best at everything, I always wanted to outdo myself from the previous experience.

In 1998 I joined FFA. My mom thought I’d use horses as my FFA Project but I wanted a challenge. I had shown horses my whole life, I wanted to learn something new. That’s when we decided as a family on sheep. That first year I knew absolutely NOTHING about sheep. And every time I showed, county fair, district fair and a couple local fairs, I was last. I didn’t know how to properly groom and/or show a sheep to save my life.

County Fair 1998 – First show ever.

I wanted a learning curve, boy did I ever get one. It was funny, I was bottom. I couldn’t get any worse. The only direction I could go was up. A lot of people stood behind me and saw my determination. I had a start, stumble, and fall, more often than not… but in the end, my persistence led me to win Grand Champion Dorset Market Lamb, Grand Champion Dorset Ram, Grand Champion Dorset Ewe at my last Missouri State Fair as an FFA Member.


Easy Peasy Pancakes & a Funny Story about Packing.

Here it is, 10pm on a Friday night. I’m laying in bed with a beautiful baby girl snuggled up next to my leg and watching Hallmark Christmas movies. This one is called a Cookie Cutter Christmas. And while I’m watching a Christmas movie about Christmas cookies, I’m thinking about breakfast food. Weird! No, I’m not pregnant… just throwing that out there :).

Every so often I find these great bloggers who have awesome recipes. Then one day they either quit blogging all together or just set their blogs to private and I can’t get back to that recipe. Boy does that suck.

So I found a recipe for Easy Peasy Pancakes. Let me tell you… they’re easy and oh so good!

I’ve made them a few times here at the house and they always go over just splendidly.

Oh and back to the movie… the one gal, she’s annoying. So overly confident and boasting in her approach to everything. Constantly saying “Compliments of yours truly.” That’s getting real old and annoying real fast. Anyway back to breakfast food.


You’re still missed

A lot has happened in this world in the last 5 years. Tonight the world has become in turmoil again because of more terrorist attacks. But this day in history has a bit of a different meaning to me and my family. You see, 5 years ago today we lost my grandpa.

This is the song that we played at his funeral. This is the song that we all said was my grandpa. He loved nothing more than family and was there no matter who in the family needed him or how they needed him.

I miss him! In fact, that’s an understatement.

That year is the year I shared his and my grandma’s story, the next day I shared a little more to the back story, and then I got the phone call that an ambulance had been called to my grandparents house to pick my grandpa up. He died the next morning somewhere around 2-4am. I’m not exactly sure the time. And as an honor and a tribute to my grandpa, he was cremated. We asked for a handful of his ashes and we placed them on the back of Chico, his horse so that he could ride for eternity!

I miss you grandpa!

Throwback Thursday – Food Edition

I’m a sucker for good food. Case in point… last fall I had a class called Research Methods. We wrote a paper over Alexander Pope’s The Rape of the Lock mock-epic poem. If you want to read my paper, I’ll share… it’s only like 26 pages long.

Anyway… last spring I took a class called Writing for the Profession where we had to edit that paper. I spent 2 semesters on that paper.

This fall some of the kids (ha listen to me, two of them are older than me….) my classmates that were in my WFTP class asked if I wanted to present my paper at a conference with them. I’ve read their papers… I don’t feel like mine is that good, they all say the same thing. They told me the conference is next Spring and it’s a panel. Would I be interested. They got my attention when they said it would be held in a ritzy haunted hotel and there would be excellent cuisine. I asked what I needed to do for them. ha! They had me at food. I’ve since given them the information they needed and now we wait to see if we’re accepted. I jokingly say I want to be a public speaker (I suck at speaking in large crowds).

Anyway, last Thursday hubby and Jared were cooking smoked Meatloaf for Dive Club Meeting. Hello Yum!

That’s what we had for dinner. The thing was, I came to the shop and met them around lunchtime when I got out of class. So what’s for lunch? So glad you asked!

We went to the Eagle Drive In. Hello yum! If you want a good burger, I can vouch it was good!