Monday, June 29, 2015

Happy Homemaker Monday - 06/29/2015

Good morning everyone, how was your weekend?

Well I'm glad to say that mine was quiet but also productive.  Hubby and I got working on the house, trying to unpack the last few boxes in the garage and getting everything looking the way we wanted.  We're almost completely done, there are a few things like family pictures that still need to go up and small touches here and there, but for the most part we are pretty much moved in and I'm still very much in love with this house.

I have to apologize for this post going up so late today, but I have had the worst insomnia and couldn't fall asleep until close to 3am and then was up at 5am with hubby, after he left for work I tried to go back to sleep but that wasn't happening either, so I'm moving super slow today.  Apologies, but here we go....


HHM



The weather in my neck of the woods:
Very cloudy and dark skies this morning, I think we're supposed to get rain.


Things that make me happy:
Feeling content, loving where I am, there is nothing quite like it

Menu for this week:
I only have meals planned until Wednesday, then I need to go grocery shopping for the next two weeks and also for 4th of July, we're having a get together at our house with a few family members coming over, should be fun.

Monday - Pork Chops with Gravy and rice
Tuesday - Mini Meatloaves with Mashed Potatoes
Wednesday - Grilled Cheeseburger Wraps


What's on my TV today:
I've been catching up on all my shows from the past month, and I'm caught up with the Portuguese soaps, somewhat.  I also started The Whispers which is such a creepy show, but quite good, I'm enjoying it.  During the day if I have time and mostly at night, Jasmine and I have been watching Heroes of Cosplay.

Looking around the house:
It looks like a home, my belongings are finally all out and placed here and there and it no longer looks like an empty house with boxes in it.  You know home is wherever I am with my family, so no matter where we may live, as long as they are there, and as long as my belongings are there, it's HOME.

On my To Do List:

Laundry
Menu Planning
Painting mine and Curt's side tables (want to paint them black to match the bed set)
Changing out the bedding on my bed
Order some craft foam for Jasmine's Cosplay Costume


New Recipe I tried or want to try soon:
I have a bunch of recipes I am going to be trying out, now that I'm back to cooking full time.  I will have them on the food blog as I make them.

In the craft basket:
My newest crochet project.  Chest pieces in foam and fabric for Jasmine's cosplay.  We have an Anime Convention coming up in September, which we want to attend, and Jasmine wants to dress up as one of her game characters from League of Legends.  This is the character which I'm making the whole costume, including the armor and the sewing and embroidery.  A HUGE undertaking but I'm up for the challenge. 



Looking forward to this week:
Getting the house ready for our 4th of July get together.  We'll have 7 family members spending the weekend with us, thankfully this house is big enough to house everyone, but I just need to figure out who is sleeping where.  Also need to figure out the menu so that I can pass it on to everyone because they want to know what they can bring.


Tips and Tricks:
Make your own curtains, there is no need to go spend tons of money when you can easily make your own.  I like Walmart's clearance fabric shelf, I can usually find really cute fabric for a dollar a yard.


My favorite blog post this week:
I've always enjoyed Bunny Mummy's blog.  Last week she took us on a walk around Green Dales and oh my goodness, how I wish I was there.


Blog Hopping (a new discovered blog you would like to share with the readers):
I came across Three Stories High and it's such a lovely blog, go on and check it out. 

No words needed (favorite photo or picture):




Lesson learned the past few days:

That I am Christian, and I will not forsake my Lord.....but I don't need to get into debates and screaming matches and ugly fights on social media to stand my ground.  It's not who I am, I don't need to answer to anyone but God and quite honestly, I don't need to make a fool of myself just to try and veer people to my way of thinking. 

On my mind:
STILL trying to get the kids into connections academy here in Texas, they have some very strange and strict laws going on.  I'm leaving it in the Lord's hands and I'm sure He'll see us through this.


Devotionals, Scripture Reading, Key Verses:
“Few things are needed—or indeed only one. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”
Luke10:42 NIV

Thursday, June 25, 2015

My Wednesday

Yesterday saw me back, first time in forever, to my normal homemaking schedule.

To say that it felt good and right, would be a very big understatement.  Contentment is the word I would use, utter and pure contentment.

I'm not opposed to change, I actually welcome it and deal it with it pretty well, unlike some of my family and friends.  My husband for example, detests change and gets quite frustrated and stressed about it.

But as much as I don't fight the change, it does feel good to get back to a comfortable and normal routine and with the craziness that has surrounded me for so many months, it was something I was very happy to embrace again.

Hope you're prepared for a photo heavy post, it's been a while since I did one of those, but I want to take you along on my day and show you what I was busy with.

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Breakfast, of course.  Cup of coffee, toast with real butter and some orange marmalade.  I do think this is one of my favorite breakfasts ever.

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Laundry, because it's never ending.  But I will tell you that I'm enjoying it a lot more now that I have such a cute laundry area.  I have to take pictures of each room and show you around the house, I keep forgetting to do that.

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Took a break to check the mail.  I don't know what it is about mailboxes out in the country that really make me smile.  There's just something about them.

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My favorite cleaner and of course, Lavender scented.

I gave the whole house a really good cleaning, just have to work on the bathrooms today.  I have 3 bathrooms to clean, oh boy.

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While the laundry was going, I grabbed the camera and headed out to the back yard.  The other day I was in the front, walking around and seeing what I could find, but I hadn't yet checked out the back yard, not all of it.  And I still haven't seen it all, it's that big.

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But what a huge surprise I got when I came across this tree.  I was snapping pictures of the crape myrtle below and noticed something to my right.  I couldn't believe what I was seeing.  We have a Pear tree in the back yard.  Oh my word, I'm excited!!!

I don't know if there are any other fruit trees out there, I need to get exploring more, but the grass is tall again and needs mowing and with the last two snakes we found in the yard, I am a little freaked out and not exactly comfortable walking around out there.

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One thing that our property has a lot of, are crape myrtle trees and they sure are gorgeous.

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Lots of flowers too, so far I've spotted Black Eyed Susans and Honeysuckle.

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Open fields, lots of open fields and barbed wire fences.  I really do get the sense of openness and country life, I couldn't be happier here.

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Also have a lot of weeds, different kinds and big and small.  With the property having been left alone for so long, they have set roots and pretty much lay claim to the yards.

I think we're going to have quite a battle on our hands getting rid of them all, or trying to at least.

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There is so much to see out here, things that for some may seem inconsequential or boring, but for me, a person who loves nature, it's been absolutely wonderful.  I don't know how many times I've been out in the yard and saw or felt or smelled something that took me back to my childhood and reminded me of the times my brothers and I would go to the fields behind our neighborhood and walk around, pick flowers, roll down the hills and just enjoy being outside.

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I've never been a city girl and I don't think I ever will be.

As the day died down, I got busy in the kitchen with dinner. 

Friends, for someone who loves cooking and hadn't really been able to do it in months, this was a big deal.  Felt so good being able to cook a meal for my family.

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As we prepared to sit down to dinner, I said a silent prayer, thanking the Lord for the food, for the house and for the moments we get to spend together.

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And really, how can you not enjoy your meal when you have these views to keep you company?

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Mexican Lasagna is what I made, it was so good, so filling and the family were thrilled to have a home cooked meal in front of them. 

There's only so much take out a person can take and I am frankly sick of it. 

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If you want to give the Mexican Lasagna a try, I've already posted it on the food blog, go on over and take a look or just follow this link.

Alrighty, I have tons to do and so I must get cracking.  I'm baking a Magic Custart Cake at the moment, recipe will follow later.  Also need to make some curtains for two of the bathrooms, so yep, lots to do.

Have a wonderful rest of Thursday and I'll see you all tomorrow :)

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Welcome to Burkburnett!!!

Before moving to Texas, I will be honest, I had never heard of Burkburnett.  Never!

I know a few cities in Texas, from visiting the State previously and from family that lives here, but this is one I had no clue existed. So with that in mind, I thought it would be fun to tell you a bit about the town and how it came to be.

I don't have a lot of info but just a few fun tidbits that you might find interesting.

A major oil discovery on a small farm in North Texas in 1918 launches a drilling boom that makes Burkburnett famous and leads to a popular Hollywood movie.

Ok now that is cool.  I had heard of the movie Boom Town but haven't watched it and definitely didn't make the connection at all.  I guess I'll have to watch it now.

Quanah with Samuel Burk Burnett.  Burnett leased Indian land for grazing.


Burk Burnett was named after Samuel Burk Burnett who owned the 6666 Ranch.

Teddy Roosevelt was a guest of Burnett on a 1904 wolf hunt and pulled some strings with the P.O. Department in naming the town.

The discovery of oil in 1918 changed the town into one of the more famous oil boomtowns in Texas. 20 Trains a day ran between Burkburnett and Wichita Falls.




As I've researched online, I've found quite interesting stories about the town.  You never really know what you'll discover until you start digging and it seems that Burkburnett, or "Burk" as it seems to be referred to by the locals, has quite an interesting start.

Photo courtesy of Barclay Gibson

Burkburnett, Electra and Ranger's oil fields made north Texas a worldwide leader in petroleum production.

Eventually, the oil boom dies out.

The town was also affected by the Great Depression, which causes it's population to decline.  Today though the population is over 10 000 and I think in great part to the nearby Sheppard AFB.

I have so much to discover and so much to see around here, and I really can't wait to get out there.  Museums and historic buildings and nearby Wichita Falls will definitely keep us busy.


Monday, June 22, 2015

Picking flowers....

Front Yard

The first time I walked around my yard, I felt like I was in a scene from Secret Garden.

There is something absolutely magical and calming about being surrounded by trees, green grass, and flowers.  I have always enjoyed sitting under the shade of a big tall tree, over being inside the house on the couch.

I get visions of hammocks hung between huge tree trunks, and summer afternoons spent lazily swinging back and forth.

I don't have the hammock.....yet.....but I certainly enjoy lazily strolling through my yards.

Crape Myrtle

What first caught my eye this morning, and actually made me grab the camera and a basket, was the glimpse of these beautiful pink blossoms waving in the wind.

Crape Myrtle

I really didn't realize what they were, until I got closer and immediately smelled their lovely scent.  Very similar to Magnolia, they smell amazing.  Pink Crape Myrtles, that is what they are, and I have a huge tree filled with these gorgeous light pink blooms.  Oh my, what a blessing for sure.

Chinese Privet

Also came upon a few bushes of Chinese Privet, so pretty.

Cool looking tree

And this tree, with it's bark pulling off which creates quite an interesting pattern.

Tree stump

I grabbed quite a handful of blossoms and continued walking around the property, really trying to take in all that I could. There is so much out there and it's such a large property that I'm afraid I will always find something I had no clue was there. I guess afraid is not the right word, really, because it makes me excited just thinking of everything that I have around me and just how peaceful it is.

Tree stump

One thing that I found a ton of, are old tree stumps.  Most will be turned into fire wood for the cold months, but I'm keeping a few to turn into little side tables for my living room, and also some candle holders.  I have been wanting to do this for many years but frankly, living in the areas we did the past few years didn't really provide much opportunity for finding tree stumps.

Tree stump

Hubby and I will be working on these in the coming weeks, as we settle in and as we finally get some time to ourselves.  I will show you all how it turns out.

Country

The field across the street is one of the reasons I so love living in this area.  It reminds me of Little House on the Prairie when the girls come running down the hill and the little one falls.

I can almost picture their house just beyond those trees and it makes me think that aside from all their hardships in making a life in a bare place, it also must have been wonderful to be surrounded by such beauty.

Flowers

I walked back into the house with a big smile on my face and an armful of different colored flowers. 

Flowers and Crochet

I've always loved fresh picked flowers in little mason jars, they immediately change up a room, and when you pair them with a crocheted blanket? 

Oh it's pure heaven!!!

Flowers

I have yet to see and find all the different wildflowers around here, but I will get to it, if anything it gives me a reason to take a morning walk every day, right?

Well friends, I need to finish my laundry and check on my crockpot chicken that has been cooking all day.  It was a throw together meal using what I had on hand as I still need to go grocery shopping, so fingers crossed it tastes good.  I'll let you know though.

Happy Homemaker Monday - 06/22/2015

Good morning friends and happy Monday.  Yes, I'm finally back to my Happy Homemaker Monday, I apologize for the lack in posts the past few weeks.

It's been a busy weekend but I'm ready to tackle on the new week and see what is ahead, are you?


HHM



The weather in my neck of the woods:
Hot and humid, two things I don't particularly care for though I'll take the heat over the humidity, any day.  Here's what we have coming up this week:



Things that make me happy:
Sitting down with a good book and relaxing.


Menu for this week:
I need to go grocery shopping today so don't really have anything planned yet, have to work on the menu and the grocery list this morning.  I do have some chicken thighs and I may put them in the crockpot for dinner.


What's on my TV today:
Have so many shows to catch up on, with not having internet for a while everything has been put on hold and now I am ready to sit down and crack on.  I do love my shows and I watch them while doing house chores so it helps the time pass quicker.


Looking around the house:
Actually sitting in bed at the moment, typing up this post.  I have my curtains and blinds open and the sun is coming in and washing the bedroom in a beautiful golden light.  Early morning is my favorite time of day.


On my To Do List:

Housework
Menu Planning and grocery shopping


New Recipe I tried or want to try soon:
I have a bunch of recipes I am going to be trying out, now that I'm back to cooking full time.  I will have them on the food blog as I make them.


In the craft basket:
Finally picked up my crochet again, I've missed it so much.  I currently have a stripey cushion on the hook.  I already have one but wanted to make another for the living room.


Looking forward to this week:
Finishing up my house, unpacking the last few boxes and really getting back into a normal routine for our family.  We've been so rushed and so busy lately that it's just getting a little tiring to be honest, so I'm ready to just stop, take a breath and relax.


Tips and Tricks:
When moving to a new State, look at it as a fun adventure and not a scary change in your life.  Take a look around, research your new area online, take a drive and see what the locals have to say, you'll be surprised at the fun things you can find out.



My favorite blog post this week:
Nothing yet, haven't started reading the blogs and replying to anyone, hoping to start again this week.


Blog Hopping (a new discovered blog you would like to share with the readers):
Ask me next week, I'm sure I'll have something for you :)


No words needed (favorite photo or picture):
Love this guy





Lesson learned the past few days:

That life is so short and that time flies by at the blink of an eye.  Having been away from all family for so many years and then seeing everyone again, makes you realize just how things change.


On my mind:
At the moment I would say the kid's schooling.  Trying to get them enrolled for the next year and still juggling the whole Texas Connections thing.  Just want to get it all taken care of finalized so that I can really relax and enjoy the rest of summer.


Devotionals, Scripture Reading, Key Verses:
Lord, be gracious to us; we long for you. Be our strength every morning, our salvation in time of distress.
– Isaiah 33:2 (NIV)

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Family, unpacking and catching my breath

Through the fence

Well my friends, one thing about being in the military, is the fact that you kind of get used to being alone, being away from all family members and spending holidays yourself.

Such was our life for a very long time, but since moving to the Texas area, we have been inundated with family and friends who live nearby.

Most of my husbands area are natives to Oklahoma and Texas and so, whichever side of the line we may be on, we are bound to meet up with family and visit.

I can tell you that since setting foot here in our new home, we have yet to have a weekend to ourselves, a moment to breathe or to even catch up from the move, it's been go go go and more go.  Every weekend we have some sort of function that we are required to attend or as we would say in the military "voluntold"  LOL

Early morning

It's fun but tiring too and I am afraid my body is starting to catch up with me and needing some much needed rest and relaxation, not to mention the fact that we still a house to finish setting up.

Yesterday, I fully intended on posting here on the blog but we left early morning and didn't return until almost 11pm.  We had a surprise celebration party for my husband's aunt and uncle who were celebrating 50 years of marriage.  Such a wonderful milestone and something we were very glad to be able to attend.

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My husband was definitely in his element, he is the type of guy who likes chatting and visiting with people and he hadn't seen many of his family members in many years, so he was so happy to be able to catch up and to be there for his Aunt and Uncle's celebration.  Here is is above with his Uncle Richard who was celebrating 50 years of marriage.

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Aunt Mickey and Uncle Richard.  We hadn't seen them in so long, matter of fact last time I saw them I was about a month away from giving birth to my Nicholas and we were at my father in law Doug's funeral.

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Nicholas is now 12 years old so as you can see, a very long time ago.  We saw aunt and uncles and cousins and little babies who are now grown teenagers.  It was great but also overwhelming and I felt a little out of place, my kids especially who didn't know anyone were a little overwhelmed with it all, but I'm glad we were able to be there and hopefully we'll be attending more family functions and able to mend the gap that has been forged.

Morning coffee

In between this, I've been trying to soak in life here in the country.  Mornings are filled with coffee cups and moments watching the sun rising and the world spring to life.

Window

The living room is slowly coming along and it's become one of my favorite areas in the house, I sure do love walking in there and seeing the green minty walls with my Americana decorations and my little pieces here and there.

Living room

Living room

It is the best part of moving in, isn't it?

Getting to make it your own and given a blank canvas to get to work on.  I admit I'm not exactly the best decorator in the world, I tend to get stuck between a couple themes I like and somehow feel like I throw them all in the same room, or try to.

But it works, at least for now.

Living room

This is the family room and it sits right off the kitchen.  I am in love with the fireplace, just absolutely in love with it and I can't wait to do more with it.

Family Room

I'm not a fan of paneling, at all, but my husband loves it and it's the one room he is not budging on and won't allow me to paint, so I'm going to let him have it, the room I mean....I'm not going to yell at him LOL

I've decided that the only way I can really live with this paneling is to embrace it and try to make something out of it, so I'm thinking maybe a cabin style?  I may need to make some trips to Hobby Lobby because they have SO much I would love to put in here.  We'll see.

Library books

I think I also mentioned in a previous post about going to the library?  Or maybe I thought I had, I know for sure I said something on Instagram.

But yes, I picked up a few books to peruse and I'm certainly enjoying them.  Being a huge fan of Phillipa Gregory I just had to grab this one, I haven't read it yet, but plan on starting tomorrow.  If you've read it let me know what you thought.

A very busy weekend we had, and today my brother in law is here with us, he'll be leaving tonight as he has to be back in Lawton tomorrow for work, but we've certainly enjoyed having him so much closer.

This week I have some grocery shopping planned, some more unpacking and laundry and all that fun stuff.  I'm also very excited to be back blogging which means my Happy Homemaker Monday will be back tomorrow morning.

I better get on out of here and go visit with family, have a wonderful rest of Sunday :)