Wednesday, January 25, 2012

A picture is worth a thousand words...

We have all heard the saying "a picture is worth a thousand words", did you know it originated from a chinese proverb? As I sit at my desk and I surrounded by smiling faces (i.e. pictures of family, friends, children, youth, adults, etc.) and it got me to thinking... How many pictures do you have in a box or a drawer in your house or stored on your camera? It's time to pull them out and share your life's story with others.

I had several blonde moments when I could not figure out how to print the pictures that we post to facebook. I don't have a photo printer at the house and other than clicking and printing I had uploaded photos from my iphone and our nikon to facebook directly and still couldn't print the ones on facebook or print facebook pictures I was tagged in. Thanks to ALICE EARLE I was able to copy pictures from facebook to my laptop picture file and then send those prints to snapfish which in turn sent me 50 free pictures for my first order (I love FREE!!!).

Anyway, with that said I found myself with LOTS of pictures but not enough frames to showcase them. I changed out photos and then added frames and it is so pleasing and peaceful to look around our home and see beautiful smiling faces looking back at me. I am using pictures as accents in our home and just LOVE having frames everywhere.

I challenge you to print off or unbox your family pictures and update your frames around the house, add new frames and hang your family photos on the walls. When you are having a bad day, just look around your home or office and someone you love will be smiling back at you!!!

Have a blessed day!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Life worth Living

"Do what makes you HAPPY

Be with those who make you SMILE

LAUGH as much as you BREATHE

LOVE as long as you LIVE"

This saying is above my desk in the kitchen.

It's funny how your life changes, whether you have planned out every detail or flown by the seat of your pants, your plan for life may not have worked out just as you had it planned out in your head as child, teen, young adult or even as you did when you were thirty-something, forty-something or fifty-something. I gave my life to the Lord when I was 7 and my life definitely has not worked out like I planned it but I have to believe it has worked out the way the Lord planned it.

I have always been a planner and organizer but as life has changed, I have had to learn to roll with the punches and be spontaneous. I do my best to do what makes me HAPPY. I strive to be with those who make me SMILE. I LAUGH just about as much as I Breathe and I LOVE open heartedly and hope to do so as long as I live. The Lord teaches us to love one another, to give of our time and offerings and to serve the Lord and others.

When my time comes to leave this world and join my earthly Daddy and heavenly Father in Heaven I want to be remembered as someone who was HAPPY, SMILED, LAUGHED and LOVED among other things.

I encourage you to live life to the fullest! Make whatever changes you need to make to make yourself HAPPY. Remember to LAUGH. Remember to SMILE and remember to LOVE yourself as well as others.

Have a blessed day!


I was so thrilled to be able to have lunch and visit with some of my dear friends this weekend (Andrea, Dave, Connor, Libby, Scott, Angela & Hailey); I haven't seen them since 2007. The kids have grown, they were so polite and just adorable, each with their own little personalities. It's funny, even thought it's been years since we have actually seen each other, we picked right up where we left off the last time we saw each other. I have to say I am so thankful for Facebook because we are able to keep up with each others lives, check out photos of the family, kids and milestones in their lives.

I am hoping I won't have to wait another 5 years to see them. I so need to make a trip to Charlotte to visit soon!!!

I am so blessed to have such treasured friendships. A friend loves at all times. Proverbs 17:17

Praying BLESSINGS for all my friends. Love you all!!!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Perfect Roast Every Time

You know you've made the perfect Roast when you pull into the garage and smell it before you ever get out of your car!!!

This morning before leaving for work I put a Roast in the crock-pot and I'm so excited now to come home from work and have dinner be ready to serve.

The key to the perfect crock-pot Roast is lots of onions (fresh chopped onions, Campbell's French Onion Soup in a Can and dry onion soup mix package) and cooking it on HIGH in your crock-pot for 6-8 hours. If you try to cook a Roast on low, it may take a couple of days to get it good and tender and I love me some tender Roast.

I typically will brown my Roast in each side in my cast iron skillet then place it in a hot crock-pot (I drizzle a little Olive oil in the bottom so it won't stick). I add Cavender's Greek Seasoning to both sides of the Roast, place it in the hot crock-pot. Add 1/4 cup worcheshire sauce. Add 1 can of Campbell's French Onion Soup Mix. Add fresh carrots, whole peeled red or white potatoes, fresh chopped onions, 1 pkg of dry onion soup mix on top (today I added a 2nd can of Campbells French Onion soup because I had it in the pantry). Cover and cook on HIGH for 6-8 hours. The finished product is a very flavorful, tender Roast.

BTW, I love Crock-Pot cooking. This is new for me, I never liked it before but to put dinner in a pot and cut it on and 8 hours later come home from work and have your dinner cooked fresh, your house smelling like the spent all day preparing a delicious meal, is priceless to me. I have been cooking something in the crock-pot at least once a week for the past few months trying different recipes from the Ms. Skinny website (previously the Skinny Crock-Pot recipes from Facebook). They have delicious, healthy, low calorie recipes that anyone can make and have a great family meal. Check it out at I have tried a couple of their Ms. Skinny Oven recipes as well, all delicious.

Well, time for Roast. Try my recipe, you will love it!

Bon Appetit!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Turkey Ziti...Its what's for dinner tonight!

Here's a simple, low calorie recipe that I thought I would share with you.

Baked Ziti (low calorie-heart healthy recipe)

1 pound ground turkey breast
2 jars Bertalla Tomato & Basil Spaghetti Sauce (use low sodium or sugar free if you can find it)
1 small can tomato sauce (or you can puree 2 fresh tomatoes)
Fresh Garlic, peeled
1/2 onion-diced
2 Tbsp. Basil
2 Tbsp. Parsley Flakes
1 Teaspoon Oregano
2 Tbsp. Cavender's Greek Seasoning
1 box Whole Wheat Rigatoni or Ziti
1 cup low fat cottage cheese
1 cup skim mozzarella cheese, shredded
1 cup low fat ricotta cheese

Brown your ground turkey breast draining any grease. Add your garlic and onion, saute. Add tomato sauce and spaghetti sauce. Add your dry seasonings. Mix your cheese mixture up in a separate bowl. Boil your pasta as directed and drain.

Spray a 9x13 pyrex dish lightly with PAM cooking spray. Add 1/2 your cooked ziti-pasta mixture. Top with 1/2 of your meat sauce. Add your cheese mixture. Top with remaining ziti then add top layer of remaining meat sauce. Place in oven on 350 and bake uncovered for 25-30 minutes. Serve hot with a fresh garden salad.

Delicious and approx. 310 calories per 8 oz.serving.

Bon Appetit!

Little Blessings...

Little Blessings…

Thought I would share with you some blessings that have come my way.

When we moved to Jackson back in the summer, I was able to spend time getting our home settled and spent a lot of time with our ailing family. I also began my mission to look for work. I finally landed a job in early November in a position that I am over qualified and paid much less than I am accustomed but I have learned to enjoy my M-F 8-4 job with very little responsibility and I count that a BLESSING. It is such a relief not to worry about work at night and not be the one who is called every time the alarm sounds or some emergency arises.

My 11 year old SUV died on me in late November and after much searching we found a gently used luxury SUV for a great low price and today I paid my first car note in many years. I count that a BLESSING because I have a great vehicle that I should have paid off in less than 3 years and have a better trade in value when I upgrade for new in 2014.

I am still able to work remotely on a quarterly for the Architect in Destin and I worked a few evenings that last two weeks on his 4th quarter accounting needs and made enough to pay my first car note; ding!ding!ding…BLESSING!

I received a call last night through another contact in Destin who is need of my services at night every two weeks for invoicing and payroll. If it all works out, that will be a great form of extra income every two weeks, minimal time on my part and with this extra income it will pay my car note each month. I consider this a BLESSING. Praying I will receive this BLESSING within the next month.

Santa brought us a Gold’s Gym treadmill for Christmas and as I hobbled off it this afternoon, another BLESSING because it gets my heart rate up and works out my tired and stiff muscles.

I made dinner last night for tonight so I don’t have to cook; another BLESSING in my book.

How has God blessed you? Are you thanking Him for the little BLESSINGS in your life? Think about it and say Thanks!

Enjoying my blessings and wishing you many blessings in the days ahead.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Hormones, recipes and more...

As I get older each and every year my body changes and for me these changes are not good. I'm bigger than I've ever been in my life, yes I said it out loud but believe it has to do with major hormone issues or lack there of. Is anyone else out there having hormone issues? I had to have an emergency hysterectomy back in '07 and I had been on so many hormones trying to help all my issues that I refused hormone replacement meds and went the natural herbal route. Well that worked great for a few years but the herbal remedies are full of soy and I am now allergic to soy. I haven't had anything in almost a year and MUST find hormones! Trying to get into to see a doctor here and get lab work done but this is just nuts. The weight gain, the loss of energy, the mood swings and the night sweats have got to go!

I decided this year I am not focusing on unrealistic new years resolutions and goals. This year I just want to be happy being me, in my own skin. Currently not so happy with me in my own skin but working on changing that!

I starting the year planning out our meals each week, selecting healthy and heart-healthy recipes for us that are really simple and easy to prepare. I just love Skinny Ms. website and recipes. I have made a lot of their recipes for the slow cooker and oven and they are low in calories and just delicious. You should check out their website You can take your favorite recipes that you know by heart and look at making those recipes with healthy ingredients. For one, we are using fresh ingredients. Processed foods are not the best for us and I know fresh costs a little more but aren't we worth it? If you plan your meals and make your shopping list before you go to the store, you cut down on purchasing "extra's" that may not be on your plan or that are not good for you.

Anyway, today just talking about what was on my mind. Please post your thougths, any suggestions you have for me regarding my hormone issues and any great healthy recipes you make.

Thanks and Bon Appetit!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Thoughts on 2012

Happy New Year! 2012 is going to be great year. I know many of you, like me, make New Year’s resolutions and in most cases don't follow through with those resolutions. So this year in lieu of setting resolutions, I am setting achievable goals for myself and our family.

We are writing down our goals and posting them in our home. We are setting milestones along the way so as we achieve a goal we can reward ourselves and more forward to achieve the next goal.

Something I started a while back that I recommend that you do is sit down and plan your weekly menu ahead of time; it helps with grocery shopping and really helps you to plan healthier meal options. Use the internet to search for healthier meal options, you can get recipes from your smartphone, laptop, tablet or Kindle so there's no excuse.

Today, as we celebrate the New Year on January 1, 2012, I am cooking traditional foods like Black-eyed Peas, Cabbage and have Easy Rosemary Chicken in the crock-pot. BTW, if you have not tried Skinny Crock Pot, now called Ms. Skinny Slower Cooker on Facebook, you should take a look. They have delicious, lower calorie recipes that are so easy to make for your crock pot so when leave for work in the morning, your dinner is ready when you get home or for busy Moms, you can let the crock pot do your cooking giving you more time during the day to do what more of your to-do list or give you more time for you.

I always add chicken broth, onions, a teaspoon of sugar and Cavender's Greek Seasoning to my cabbage as it boils. I add the same thing to my black-eyed peas as they simmer on the stove. If I have bacon, I add a little bacon to both but today we have no bacon so just using the above. I boil my cabbage and black-eyed peas for about 1/2 hour on med-high heat, then cover and simmer for several hours.

Wishing you and yours a healthy, happy 2012!!!

Bon Appetit!