A Funny Thing Happened on Her Way out of My Driveway

Yesterday morning, a good friend dropped her daughter off at my place–early–before taking her older two on to a day of homecoming festivities. The little drive that my neighbors and I share provides two ways in and out from my place. After a few days of snow and high speed winds, it’s hard to tell which is the better route to take. Well, I guess she chose the wrong one, because the next few minutes found us shoveling and pushing and spinning tires until a neighbor came to our rescue. This neighbor is not my biggest fan (or, he’s not the biggest fan of five noisy kids), so that was a humbling experience. But we all smiled frozen smiles (not fake, just literally frozen) and Friend A was on her way in a flash.

I’m calling her Friend A because much later in the day, Friend B came to join me for the last hour or two of Sabbath. We lazied around and listened to sermons, and when it was time for her to leave, I said goodbye as I ran to grab something from my parents’ (if you’re new here, I am a single mom to five and I live behind my parents in the cutest little trailer park in northern New Mexico). As I was leaving my parents’, two cooking pots in hand, I heard the sickening sound of spinning tires. It couldn’t be. I couldn’t be stupid enough to have not warned Friend B about Friend A…right?

Ummm…wrong.

It’s been cold here. Really cold. It barely ever makes it above zero in the day time; and after dark, ten below is “a warm night”. It was not a warm night as we used two shovels for one hour to do our level best to pry her loose. We had a few Valjean moments, but it wouldn’t budge. If there was ever a mountain woman try, though, we gave it. Lying flat on the deep snow covered ground in my pjs and a coat to chip Antarctica from under your truck is mountain-tough, right? In the end, her husband came to her rescue (I would have a much better story if he hadn’t, I’m sure). Friend B (who just so happens to be one of my very favorite people on planet earth) is moving to a warmer climate this week, and I’m not sure we could have a better going away memory. I told you we’d be laughing about it, later! And really, we weren’t ever not laughing. Cause that’s what we do best.

I’m going to miss you, mountain woman!

Personal P.S. Does your back hurt today, or am I really that out of shape?!

post signature

Because the Cutest Things in the World are Found on Etsy

I’m not writing this to make you jealous, but it’s been raining here all week long and I am so in love with fall I want to shout it from the rooftops. Soon, the rain will turn to snow and I’ll do my level best to restrain the tiny Texan that still lives inside me and only oohs and ahhs over each year’s very first snow and any flakes that happen to fall on Christmas Eve. All other frozen precipitation will result in suppressed whimpering (though some moanings are bound to seep through my plastered smile). I’d like to thank you in advance for continuing to read throughout the wintertime (that’s when I do my best melancholy blogging, y’all).

But today, in honor of fall, I’d like to introduce you to someone. I’m not actually equipped to fully introduce you because I’m just getting to know her myself. But, from what I’ve learned in a few Facebook exchanges, she’s as lovely as this fall rain…and so is her blog and so are her somewhat ethereal and most definitely magical (she says “whimsical”) creations.


I was innocently cruising Facebook one afternoon when I came across the following photo.

I was immediately drawn to it because the model is my bestie from high school. But if there is any accessory in the whole wide world that matches Cameo’s (Bay Bit’s namesake) beauty, it would have to be this cowl, right?!

Thou shalt not covet. Thou shalt not covet. Thou shalt not covet. Thou shalt not covet. Thou shalt not covet. Thou shalt not covet. Thou shalt not covet. Thou shalt not covet. 

[Don’t covet, just purchase!]

Where was I?

Enchanted by the photo, I had to search out the maker of the cowl. And, as it turns out, everything the beautiful and [very] funny Hannah makes is enchanting.

See?

Even though we’ve never met, I wrote her and asked if I could host a giveaway as a way of introducing her to all of you. And I’m so happy she agreed! Because, seriously, I want it to be because of me (err…Hannah) that at least one of you is walking around like Grace Kelly in autumn.

Although, I’d really like for you to buy out her whole stock. Have I mentioned that I think I love her?!

To enter for your chance to win $25 dollars in Whimsical Creations shop credit, simply visit her shop and look around. Please read the product descriptions. They’re fab! Then, in the comments section, let me know what item you would like to have if you are picked as the lucky winner (or, let’s face it, the item you are going to buy if you don’t win). The item you choose today is not legally binding. I’m just letting you know, cause it’s gonna be a difficult choice.

For additional entries, you can “like” her Facebook and/or follow her blog. I don’t usually recommend a blog as a part of a giveaway….but did I mention that…? Yes, I did. I pretty much already love this songwriting, green living, healthy eating, crocheting, mother two also whimsical little boys.

So, check her out and comment for entries! Good luck, my lovely (and soon to be lovelier) friends!

I’m gonna go get some hot tea and pray that I stop sneezing someday.

post signature

127885_Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Logo

I Have the Prettiest Friends!

No, my pretty friends are not exactly the theme of this post. Our Wish-bone “Salad Party” (that I was supposed to post about on Tuesday but I had a near death experience with a 24 hour bug, instead) is.

By the way, Wishbone, thank you so much for the lovely evening and, you know, for footing the bill (I was not otherwise compensated for this post).


On Monday night, my besties and I gather for a Bible study where, essentially, we discuss ways to love our children and our husbands. This Monday, everyone came an hour early…for salad and sweet iced tea!

This is Audrey. She brought a Greek Chicken Salad (my absolute favorite of the evening). Wish-bone provided her with their new Greek Vinaigrette Dressing (which impressed us all!). She marinated chicken in some of the Greek dressing and mixed the rest with Greek Yogurt and lemon juice. I am absolutely craving the cucumbers and chicken all smothered in that amazing yogurt dressing. Yu-uum. Thanks, Audrey!
This is my salad. I chose Wish-bone’s Bruschetta Italian. My salad took all of fifteen minutes and was a mixture of chopped tomatoes, torn spinach, cubed mozzarella, chiffonade cut basil, grilled chicken, sliced and toasted 12-grain bread and another triumphant new flavor from Wish-bone! Next time I make this salad, I’ll add red peppers and mushrooms (like I do when I make my bruschetta). But it was yummy just the way it was.
Rachel’s salad was the prettiest, and also the most surprising. I didn’t know I liked beets. Well, I now know that I like fresh, organic beets! They were soo good. Rachel combined walnuts, blue cheese, romaine lettuce, tomatoes, pears and beets in her delicious salad. Wish-bone provided the Superfruit Berry Vinaigrette (an anti-oxidant boost and a yummy new dressing)!
I was the most excited about Mary Ann’s salad (because I’m a huge fan of shrimp), and it didn’t disappoint! Mary Ann tossed tomatoes, celery, zucchini, onion, garlic, spinach and shrimp with Wish-bone’s Mediterranean Italian Vinaigrette. I kept returning to pick at her salad all night long! Thanks, Mernie.

The kids behaved themselves nicely (it probably helped that it was a salad party and not a cake extravaganza).

We ate every last bite of those salads and have determined to make “salad parties” a tradition.

On the left is my beautiful friend, Fe. She’s from Brazil. Her accent is as pretty as she is {swoon}. Fe is at the table with Mary (my life-long fill-in mom and the leader of our little bi-monthly study). I can only hope and pray that my kiddos have as great “alternate” parents as I do! But, with my group of friends, I’m sure they will.

Having fun, Rach?

We did talk and giggle. But it was relatively quiet while we completely devoured out first plates. We all decided that salad is pretty fantastic because you can ooh and aahh  and scarf, scarf, scarf without feeling one degree less feminine.

Or one degree less Superman-like. It won’t weigh you down for those unexpected emergencies.

See, Miranda, thank you for proving the femininity point too perfectly (Isn’t she lovely? Yes, she is.)!

Now, you don’t think that Wish-bone threw me and my friends a party just to make y’all feel jealous, do you?

Nope.

One lucky KT reader is just a few days away from winning their own salad sampler party!

Complete with:

 

  •  4 Wish-bone salad bowls (one for you to keep, other three for your friends)
  •  4 of Wish-bone’s newest salad dressings: Bruschetta Italian Dressing, Greek Vinaigrette, Superfruit Berry Vinaigrette, and Mediterranean Italian
  • 4 example recipes for inspiration (one for you to keep, other three for your friends)
  • 4 salad plates and a tablecloth for your  “Salad Sampler” party (for you to keep)

Wanna win? Umm…yes, yes you do!


Just comment (here or on Facebook). The winner will be drawn at random!
post signature

127885_Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Logo

What’s That Smell?!

I began my parenting career by having four babies within sixteen months. A lot of issues go along with that. Mainly, I roped a large amount of caution tape around my litter (because it was less chaotic if they were all in one place), and I’m just now learning how to remove it.

On a more superficial note, though, four babies in diapers taught me the meaning of the word, “smelly”. Lemme tell you, baking chocolate chip cookies can only do so much. Candles are better for your waist line; but, lit flames and a house full of children do not exactly go hand in hand. It’s not fun to spend all day cleaning only to realize that your sanctuary still smells at the end of the day. As a result (even though I only have one in diapers, now), a sweet smelling home has become a bit of an obsession of mine.

I don’t agree to review many products. Mostly, that’s out of fear that I won’t like them and will then face the confrontation of a bad review. But when I was asked to review something that would make my house smell good…yeah, I jumped on that pretty quickly. I’m sure y’all have all heard of Scentsy (I had). But what I didn’t know is just how superior their products are to other “scent options” on the market.

It took me half an hour to pick my Scentsy warmer. That’s not because I’m indecisive. They simply have a huge selection of styles…and each one cuter than the last! It’s a light bulb, and it melts scented wax. But it also fits in perfectly with my living room decor.

It plugs into the wall, but because the wax is not up against the outlet (as is the case with plug in fresheners), it does not present a fire danger. I didn’t realize, until researching the Scentsy, that other plug in air fresheners have actually caused many fires. Yikes.

I chose the Hazelnut Latte scent, but I didn’t realize it would actually smell like a coffee shop in here! Every time I plug it in, I’m craving biscotti within twenty minutes. And because I love essential oils, I have also used my Scentsy as an oil warmer. Scentsy warmer plus lavender oil equals yum.

As a mom, my favorite thing about my Scentsy warmer has to be the safety. The wax melts at a very low temperature, meaning it will not burn little fingers. I mean, really, it just stays nice and warm.

(Taking this photo made me long for a paraffin treatment.)

Holly would like to offer a free Scentsy warmer ($30 value) to one of my readers. I’d like the rest of you to just go buy one (now that I know the real value)! They come with team logos and in “man” colors, too. If you’re sending someone off to college in the fall, this would be the perfect addition to their dorm room!

As a personal favor, please visit Holly’s store and take a look around. Then come back here and report on your favorite warmer. Leave your contact info and consider yourself entered. I’ll announce the very lucky winner on May 27th!

post signature

127885_Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Logo

Do Me (and You) a Favor

Head on over to my friend’s adorable little (but probably not little for long) blog and read her latest post. She wrote it after almost deciding to throw in the proverbial blogging towel due to criticism (ahem, I know a little bit about that). Aren’t you glad she’s still blogging?!

I don’t want to give anything away…so you’re just gonna have to trust me: It’s a good one. And I may or may not be able to relate to the whole peed-then-dried toddler bed thing. Ahem.

 

post signature

127885_Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Logo

Chickens and Musicians

On Thursday afternoon, the kids and I headed two little towns over so that I could record some violin tracks for a friend’s new CD. I’d never been recorded…and I’d never played while wearing headphones…so it was quite the experience for me. When the CDs are out, I’ll see if I can offer some here. I’m sure you all want to buy a CD with me on it, right (even if I’m only playing on one song)?

I took my camera with every intention of having pictures taken while I was recording (i.e. nostalgia). But then, the chickens and the sheep stole the show.

 

 

I told the kids they could chase the chickens all they wanted (because I used to have chickens, and I knew they’d never catch them).

Every child (except Baby Bear) caught at least one chicken.

Tiny Dancer caught four.

And if you’ve never visited a recording studio with chickens, ducks and a sheep in the yard. Well, my friends, you haven’t been to northern New Mexico. But, you should. It’s a great place to visit.

post signature

127885_Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Logo