You are my Sunshine

The award is circulated to those bloggers that you want to inform that  their posts brighten your day.
1. Include the award logo on your post or blog

2. Link to the person who nominated you

 The Fabulous Jillian from Jill’s World

I stole from her blog…

3. Answer 10 questions about yourself.
Here are my 10 questions:
1.  I believe everyone has a “theme song” – one song that defines them, speaks to them, moves them…  What is yours?  Well I asked my husband once what song best describes me and he said Brad Paisley’s, “She’s Everything.”  So I’ll just go with his choice 🙂

2. They’re making a movie about your life.  Who do choose to play you on the big screen?  Oh heck I know who I’d choose to play hubby… but me… Well Juilianne Hough’s hair in the new Footloose Movie looks a lot like mine if I had a professional hair stylist (haha) so I’ll choose her I guess.

3. What is your favourite holiday, and why? 
Sad to say Christmas, but really it’s that time between Thanksgiving (US) and Christmas.  Even though the stresses of the Christmas season hit everyone, there is something magical about that time of year too.

4. You are given a free ticket to travel anywhere in the world for one month – where do you go, and what sights do you see? 
I choose Greece.  I wanna see it all!

5. Are you a fan of Reality TV?  If so, which show would you like to be on and why?
I sooooooo want to be on Dancing with the Stars, but that would make me have to be famous first… Do you see that happening? Maybe with the blog? I absolutely LOVE dancing.

The other one I might like to be on would be The Next Food Network Star…. Um… haven’t you noticed that I LOVE to cook?

6. What is your biggest pet peeve?
I would have to say people who don’t know how or when to use me and I correctly.  If you are referring to yourself and another person, you put yourself second.  Never say Me and hubby.  Tbug used to say that and I’d ask her why she was calling them mean.  Proper is to say Hubby and me.  The only time you can get away putting yourself first is if you’re naming people in a photo, you’re going left to right and you’re on the left.

7. What is your favourite thing about Autumn?  What is this season like where you live?
I absolutely LOVE to wear hoodies. That and bon fires are fabulous too! Well the leaves turn, the nights are cool, some years it’s very colorful and some years we wonder if we’re still in summer… lol.

8. Do you play an instrument?  If not, what instrument would you like to learn to play?
I’d really love to play the Piano or the Guitar, I actually can play the Clarinet. I didn’t play my senior year of high school because well, I was a dummy I guess, but my band teacher told me I could have gotten a scholarship to play in college.

Circa 1998 + I am the one on the far right in case you couldn’t guess.

9. You’re on a diet, and trying to avoid certain junk foods… which is your biggest temptation – the hardest to resist? Definitely Breads, pastas, carbs of all sorts!

10. Do you have a Bucket List?  Tell me one of the items on it that you hope to cross off someday. 
Just check it out here!!

4. Nominate 10 bloggers to receive the award. Link your nominees in your post and leave them a comment letting them know that they have been nominated and give them 10 questions to answer about themselves.


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Embarrassing moments – Pop Tab Edition

Ok so telling you about this might make you scratch your head at my sanity and that’s ok….

So back in like 2004ish we were discussing why Ronald McDonald house collected pop tabs to help with rooming fees.  I don’t remember who “we” was, I sure wish I did.  So whoever it was I was discussing this with (I really think my dad, but I don’t know) told me that they had more aluminum in them than a pop can.


So I went to dinner with my dad, uncle and grandpa and we all had pop cans so I started swipping pop tabs off the cans and my uncle asked me why.  I told him I was collecting them for the Ronald McDonald house.  He asked me why they collected them so I told them it was because they had more aluminum in them than the pop can.  I thought my uncle was going to fall off the bench we were sitting on laughing his butt off at me.

Sad thing is, that was close to 10 years ago and I still haven’t lived that comment down… anytime I’m around a pop can someone gives me fits about the pop tabs.

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I love Carbs – Faux Macaroni Grill Bread

When I was a kid, we spent a lot of time driving to Texas for horse shows.  One year while in Ft. Worth, we stumbled across Macaroni Grill.  I was in love.  I kind of have a serious thing for Italian food.

Jump forward a few years and we got one close, like within 1 1/2 hours drive time.  Well since then it has closed down and the one that opened even closer has closed down?  Really?  darn!  They have this phenomenal bread the bring to the table.  This recipe here, pretty darn close!  I’m in love, again! Don’t worry hubby, I’m not trading you in!!

So I made this for an Italian Themed Sunday Night Dinner one night and DiverGirl gave me fits about this not being in our diet.  More on that later though.

Enjoy! It’s super simple.

1 cup warm water
1 1/2 tsp dried yeast
3 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 tbsp dried rosemary
2 1/2 cup flour

Place water and yeast in the bottom of your mixer bowl.  Add the rest of the remaining ingredients.  Mix with the dough hook of your mixer for 5 minutes.  Place oil in the bottom of the bowl and let your dough rise for 1 1/2 hours until it has doubled in size.

Punch your dough down and then roll out into the shape you want.  You’ll need to work on a lightly floured surface, but try to keep as much flour off the dough as possible.  I rolled mine into an oblong surface and then cut it in half trying to get close to a square shape like they serve at the restaurant.

Place on a baking sheet and brush the top with some olive oil and sprinkle with additional dried rosemary.  Finish off with a sprinkling of Kosher salt.

Bake in a preheated oven 400 degree oven for 20-25 minutes.

Remove from oven and enjoy with olive oil dipping sauce.

Rosemary Bread

by Nicole
Keywords: bake appetizer bread side snack a/p flour Italian
Ingredients (2 Loaves)
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1 1/2 tsp dried yeast
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tbsp dried rosemary + more to sprinkle on top
  • 2 1/2 cup flour
Place water and yeast in the bottom of your mixer bowl. Add the rest of the remaining ingredients. Mix with the dough hook of your mixer for 5 minutes. Place oil in the bottom of the bowl and let your dough rise for 1 1/2 hours until it has doubled in size.
Punch your dough down and then roll out into the shape you want. You’ll need to work on a lightly floured surface, but try to keep as much flour off the dough as possible. I rolled mine into an oblong surface and then cut it in half trying to get close to a square shape like they serve at the restaurant.
Place on a baking sheet and brush the top with some olive oil and sprinkle with additional dried rosemary. Finish off with a sprinkling of Kosher salt.
Bake in a preheated oven 400 degree oven for 20-25 minutes.
Remove from oven and enjoy with olive oil dipping sauce.
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Goals. Drive. Motivation.

Circa August 2003


Things that are floating around in my head right now.  I keep my hotmail email account open for one reason and one reason only… that is to keep my facebook account up and running.  All the notifications go there and don’t take up room in my gmail account, probably why people who know my gmail email have a hard time finding me.  Once every few months I go into my hotmail account to 1) keep it active and 2) clean all the crap out of it.  It fills up fairly fast!

Yesterday while I was in cleaning out that email I clicked on one of the side folders that was titled “my stuff.”  For some reason, most of the emails I have saved over the years to my hotmail account have been deleted (it’s been active since 1999) but in the “my stuff” folder there were 30 emails that date back to 2002ish and the most recent was 2006.

a Photo I’ve been promising you for a while. Circa Summer 1999

I started reading through the titles and author (for lack of better word) of the email and found one from a friend of mine.  She was a few years behind me in school so while I was in college, she was still in high school.  She sent me her goals list and told me to save the email and every so often send it to her to remind her of her goals and to keep her on track.

I could see where I forwarded it once, but I didn’t pay attention to the date I sent it.  But yesterday, I forwarded the email to her again, if for no other reason than a good laugh.  These were her short and long term goals circa 2004.

Circa May 2001

I’m not going to lie, I was wishing I could find goals I had made for myself dated back to 2001 era, around the time I graduated from high school and was headed to college.  I really thought it would have been fun to look back on those goals, just to see what I’ve accomplished and see how my goals have changed.

That’s when I remembered a few months back I found a journal from my junior year in high school.  I found it in my room at my parents’ house and brought it to our house to read to my husband, especially after one entry I made.

When the day comes, will you be ready?  Where will you go and what will happen?  Will it be peaceful and nice or will it be gloomy and a place to avoid?  It is the way we all are, we want to know.  You will wonder, what’s happening?  What’s next?  Am I really ready for this?  Is it actually for me?  So many thoughts will run through your mind.  It’s scary to even think about.  Breathing deeply, now your heart is racing wildly.  You wish you could control it but you can’t.  You start to shake and get hot.  Wait you’re cold.  You can’t even tell what you are.  You are so nervous you can’t handle it.  You are ready to freak out.  It is bothering you.  It is really hard to decide what choice to make or if it will be the right one.  Walking slowly you keep taking long deep breaths to try and calm yourself but it isn’t helping at all.  You just keep getting closer and more nervous.  Now comes a decision in your life that could change you forever.  Shy or standoffish?  Big or little?  Now soon or never?  What is your choice?  You only have 20 steps left.  You can take the hard road which is better in the long run, or take the easy way out and go down.  All you have worked for is gone if you choose down.  Now is the biggest decision ever.  You’ve come this far but can turn back now; but you’ve come this far.  You keep coming.  There you are at the grandest staircase you’ve ever seen!!  10 steps left and you are there.  Through the huge double doors is the most exciting feeling you have ever had.  Four steps, three steps, two steps, one step.  Now you are there at the double doors.  They seem to be 100 feet tall.  You grab the knobs and pull them open.  You walk in just to hear the bell ring.  Awe, man you realize you’re already late for your first day of school.  You walk in and go to class.

I also snickered at my spelling and grammar.  Whoa was it bad!

I guess technically this journal wasn’t my hopes and dreams, especially because it was for a school English class so I couldn’t write my true hopes and desires, but one thing is for sure, it shows where I was in life.  It shows my character, it shows how I saw the world, it shows my feelings toward many situations, including the man I married :).

Circa August 2003

I’ll keep looking for my list of goals, because surely they have to be somewhere.  I guess from this, I should sit down and write out where I see myself in the next year, five years and 10 years in the future so that when Tbug is graduating high school I can show her where I thought I would be…

My Car Collection

Over the weekend I went to my parents house to pick up a set of dresser drawers for Tbug’s room.  For some reason I went into their basement and found a bucket with all my old cars in it.  Now when I was a kid I had 3 favorite toys, other than playing kitchen (by the way I served the BEST water!), those were Barbies (yes, and still like them), play horses (for when I couldn’t be on a real horse) and cars/tractors.

I had a nice collection of different things too… My John Deere Tractors…

But don’t worry, I wasn’t a color snob, I went for red as well, thank you International Harvest and Case which is now Case IH.

And even one lonely blue Ford.  He pulled the green and red equipment just fine!

 I also had the Monster trucks.  Now it does crack me up that all my monster trucks were in deed Fords…. until Hubby’s Chevy and my Hyundai, all I’ve ever owned was a Ford.

Hubby told me these were three cars as seen on Days of Thunder.  I didn’t probably know it then, I just knew I had my very own race car.

And sports cars galore.  Anything from American to Foreign.  My absolute favorite was the black Pontiac Trans AM.  I wanted one of those cars when I grew up so bad (at the time).  Now I must also tell you that my parents had a 24 foot around above ground swimming pool and one of my favorite things to do was race them off the deck into the pool and then dive in (read that as jump, I can’t dive) and fish them out.  Yeah, that’s why the paint looks a little rough on a few of them….

Do you remember Micro Machines?  Apparently I liked them as well! I wasn’t a car snob!

Then I found this bad boy.  I can’t explain him…

You know these cars had to be old, even when I played with them.

I always said I wanted a Vet (Corvette), I guess technically I had one ;).

And we can’t forget the regular pick up truck, the bulldozer, the liquid tanker truck which obviously was hauling Nitrogen fertilizer out to the field for maximum crop yield and the Cruella Daville car for a night out on the town.

Hey all kids are entitled to an imagination, and by george I had one.  In fact… these were all my cars! 🙂

And for anyone who wants to knock Barbie… come on, she’s a snazzy dresser and was career oriented. 🙂

Anyway I was excited when I found these, not sure what I’ll do with them now, but we’ll see :).  I wanted to put at least the John Deere in my kitchen for decorations, but well… that may still happen, we’ll see.

Happy Monday!

365 Project

I love pictures. That’s all there is to it!  I want to get better at photos, especially get some better photos of me.  Yeah I guess you can call me vein if you want.  I’m not trying to be.  I think it’s more self-conscious.  All summer long I have found different blog posts about taking your own photo or doing a 365 a day project.  And yes 365 photos of yourself is a lot!  And I tried the whole 52 Photo challenge and have had difficulties, but I’m going to try this whole photo a day for a year thing and see how it turns out.  I put it off all summer waiting for January 1 so that I could do it January 1 through December 31.

Here are the links I’ve found:

Self Portrait Photo Recipe

Self Portrait Tips

365 Project

Self Portraits

365 Project

And while I’m at it, I’ll finish out the year with the 2012 Photo challenge that I kind of failed at, but here we go 🙂  Bring on the New Year!

Here is the 2012 Challenge:

Jan 01 Newness

Jan 08 Cold 
Jan 15 Tired

Jan 22 Breakfast 
Jan 29 Macro

Feb 05 Sleep

Feb 12 Body Parts 
Feb 19 Romance

Feb 26 Spirit 
Mar 04 Vegetables

Mar 11 Underneath 
Mar 18 Spring

Mar 25 Planning

Apr 01 Fools 
Apr 08 Excitement

Apr 15 Work

Apr 22 Growth

Apr 29 Trees

May 06 Mother 
May 13 Up

May 20 Annoyance

May 27 Temptation

Jun 03 Looking in

Jun 10 Party

Jun 17 Father

Jun 24 Swing

Jul 01 Lighting Experimentation

Jul 08 Red, White, Blue

Jul 15 Family


Jul 22 Summer/Winter

Jul 29 Time

Aug 05 Water

Aug 12 Shadows
Aug 19 Peace
Aug 26 Defeat
Sep 02 Sunset
Sep 09 Spice

Sep 16 The Kitchen

Sep 23 Autumn

Sep 30 Tools
Oct 07 Colors

Oct 14 My Neighbors

Oct 21 On The Shelf
Oct 28 Memories

Nov 04 Texture
Nov 11 Wind 
Nov 18 Music 
Nov 25 Gathering 
Dec 02 Beyond Reach 
Dec 09 Smiles 
Dec 16 After 
Dec 23 Winter/Summer 
Dec 30 Oldness

I hope you all have a safe and wonderful New Years Eve/New Years and we’ll see you back here next year!!!!   

Happy New Year!!!

p.s. Don’t forget about the 2012 Review Extravaganza review!!  You still have time to link up and we’d love to review with you!

This post brought to you by the letter D

Wednesday was a rough day for me.  Let me just start by stating that fact.  I think it plays a lot into this post…

Tuesday night at the shack they decided next weeks food theme was going to be food that “started with the letter D.”  Have you ever tried to find food that starts with the letter D?  It’s kind of impossible.

That night we were all yelling things we knew/could think of – Dill Weed, Dip, Dill Pickles, Dill Pickle Dips, Dicky Doo (not sure on this one… I guess it just started with a D), etc.

So when I got home Wednesday night I sat down with the new Paula Deen cookbook even though its my Christmas present and started flipping through it.  I decided to flip to the index for the letter D and started using Siri to send my Sister in law texts of all the things in the cookbook that started with D.  

(I’m the green bubbles, she’s the white bubbles)

In the meantime Siri got hung up and my friend Earl sent me a text. 

When Siri got hung up I had to close out of the text messages and reopen (and actually type them out… the nerve… lol).  Well if you know iPhones, they open to the text messages that haven’t been read if there is just one, if there are multiple it opens to the screen where it shows everyone’s name.  What did it do?  It opened to Earl’s and she asked if we wanted to “Come over for Desserts”.

So I wasn’t paying attention and I started typing Earl all the words in the PD cookbook ques that began with the letter D. 

And she responds back, Or just desserts??!!

I noticed it said Messages (1) but I really thought that was Earl’s message waiting for me.

Then I noticed I sent all those D’s to Earl.  I laughed so hard I cried.

In the mean time I got a few through to Liss before all of this and she was confused so she started sending me back random things. (The first picture above)

So when I realized what I had done, I quickly hit edit and forwarded 16 items to Liss.

And then Liss and I continued our conversation.

I even told her I dropped the biscuits.  I wasn’t making biscuits.  But it was funny….

When I realized that I had sent all those to Earl though, I was laughing so hard I couldn’t even talk and tell hubby why I was laughing so hard.  I’d start to tell him and I’d get choked up laughing again.  I laughed so hard I cried.  I’m not sure he found it as hilarious as I did.  I’m still laughing about it.

Not going to lie, I think that was a pretty good end to the day I was having, but oh the excitement there for a little while.

We did wind up going to Earl’s house where I proceeded to eat a piece two pieces of pecan pie.  In my defense, they were small pieces that made out to the size of a regular piece because I didn’t know if I liked Pecan pie or not.

But when I walked in to Earl’s house to explain the random texts I was still dying laughing.  She told me she thought it was because she said Desserts which starts with a D; I was just sending her random things that began with D… which not going to lie, is something I would probably do :).  I get text happy from time to time… although never just picked a letter… new game to try 😉

Happy Friday y’all and remember, laughing burns 5 calories!

Calling all Band Geeks

Since we’re all friends here I feel I can confess…

I was a band geek.

There, I said it.  It feels so good to get that off of my chest.  However, I should also admit that in fact my husband was a band geek too.

I played the Clarinet, he played the Tuba in concert band or Sousaphone in marching band.  And there you have it boys and girls, we were band geeks.  But that’s ok, I had good times in band, in fact it gave me a chance to go to Disney World and get to know my husband even better, you know, before he fell off the face of the earth or at least out of my life.

What’s really odd and strange is we went to a fairly good sized high school, our graduating class was 214.  That’s good sized for around here anyway.  But I think I was one of the few Band students who was also in the FFA.  Just food for thought.

Anyway moving on.  Saturday was the Maple Leaf Parade and we went and watched the parade.  Both of us being drilled sooooo much on how to march and march in step and in straight lines while keeping diagonals really makes you sit there and watch the bands going through the parade and critique them.  And what’s really funny is things we used to complain about, why do we have to do it this way or why can’t we do it that way, when you see bands doing those things, you realize why the band teachers said no.  Crazy how the world works.

On top of the parade they also have a huge field show competition out on the football field.  We decided Saturday night that we were going to go watch the finals.

Holy cow, sitting there in that stadium brought back all those early morning practices, all that yelling and being drilled, all the counting, marching in step while playing a song, and even more.  It was GREAT!

When I was a senior I decided not to be in the band.  I was tired of the constant struggle between band functions and FFA functions and truth be told, I hated 7am practices in the cold.  I had a few people tell me I would miss it and I shouldn’t quit, not before my last year.  Silly me though, I didn’t listen.  Dumbest mistake of my life.  Ok maybe not dumbest but it wasn’t a smart one either.  Being there Saturday night I kind of really wanted to be out on that field with those bands.  Just sayin.

So the first band up we saw I saw this guy walking around in khaki’s and a jacket on the field.  At first I thought it was the band director and I really wondered what he was doing.  Then I realized it was a judge.  Now, I’m not sure I ever remember a judge walking around on the field while we were competing, if they did, wow I was sure focused, but I have to admit, I think that would have bothered me.  He doesn’t KNOW their routine’s so how did he know he wasn’t going to cause them to run over him or have to get out of formation.  I think that is actually kind of rude…  He wasn’t always paying attention to everyone around him and he did almost get run over a few times.  I kind of wish they had but maybe that’s the vindictive side of me…

Which one of these is not like the other?!?!

 And then, we were always told, keep going.  Don’t let anything distract you.  Well look out on the field, what is that?  Is that…. a Shoe?  Why yes, yes it is a shoe.  One of the band members lost their shoe while in competition.  I must commend them for continuing on!

Wow this brought back such fond memories.

And then came time for the results of the competition.  All drum majors line up on the track.  One of the cool things is when the drum majors do their little “We’re ready” routine.  And during the ceremony they do it every time their name is called.  Very awesome!

Best Auxillary – Lebenon High School
Best Drum Major – Marionville High school
Best Precussion – Lebanon High School
Best Horn Line – Lebanon High School

8th place – Joplin High School
7th Place – Seneca High School
6th Place – Marionville High School
5th Place – Buffalo High School
4th Place – Hutchinson High School
3rd Place – Ava High School
2nd Place – Glendale High School
and 1st Place – Lebanon High School

Then they have a Sweepstakes round.  It is the best overall combined score between the parade and the field show with 30% weighed on the parade scores and 70% weighted on the field competition scores.

Sweepstakes Winners: Lebanon High School


1. When you were 17, tell us what kind of car you drove, where you worked, and what you were usually up to on the weekends?
I drove a 1994 Ford Ranger Extended cab that was tricked out.  Yes, I usually got made fun of, I hate to tell what they called it here on the blog because it was kind of racist, but I live in a town full of Hispanics and so they always called it the Beaner truck :(.

I didn’t have a paying job persay… I lived on a farm so I was a farm hand.  Plus I showed sheep for FFA so sheep and Horses were my life.  It was probably a very boring life for most but I liked/loved it.  Heck I was driving a truck at 4 years old by myself.

2. Show us a picture of you when you were 17 {roughly}.

My Senior Photos – Which I cried over, now I wish I still looked like that 😉


3. When you were 17, tell us what you wanted to be when you “grew up.”
I was fairly undecided.  I graduated high school at 17 so I was looking in to going to college.  Originally I declared my major as Agriculture Journalism, however once I got to college I decided to pursue Agriculture Education instead.  All I knew is I wanted something to do with the Agriculture field.
4. When you were 17, tell us the kind of boys that you dated. Did you have a type? Do you have a relationship you remember well? Tell us about it.
Oddly enough I met my husband just shy of 17, I was 15 and he was completely different (at that time) to the type of guys I went for.  Believe it or not, I am actually a fairly shy person.  Around people I know or definitely on this blog, it’s mine after all, I’m a little more outgoing, so I only dated 2 guys all through high school.  One for 5 months and the other for 1 year 4 months.  Neither ended very well but whatever, that’s the past.  They were both cowboy type, you know, good old farm boys of sorts, however I do believe there is a difference between good old farm boys and cowboys, another post for another day.  My husband at the time – VERY city and that scared me.  Now I realize he isn’t very city, but I didn’t know that at the time.  Truthfully I’m not sure I ever dated, well I take that back, I may have dated one city boy.  He didn’t understand country life at all and so we didn’t last.  But again, all relationships help you learn, grown and develop!  And oddly enough I fit in with the city crowd too, although I still stick out a bit.  I think it’s the boots and belt buckle that set me apart ;).

5. When you were 17, tell us where you pictured your life 10 years from then. Did it turn out the way you expected it to? Life is so far from how I thought it would pan out.  I planned on graduating high school, going to college, being married by oh I’d say 23-25, settling down and probably doing something in the agriculture related industry for a job, and having one maybe two kids, but still wasn’t sure there.  Ok so I work for a company in the bedding industry, I was 27 when I got married, I became an instant {step}mom and I married a guy that I was supposed to have a date with at 15.  How’s that for nothing like you imagined?  I do however have my Agriculture degree… And I graduated high school and then college in 4 years.  That was what I thought would happen.  From there, nope, nada.