Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Are You Ready For "Eclipse"?

Twilight Series: "Eclipse"
Today's the day Twilight fans! 
Twilight's third movie comes out at noon!  If you are the dedicated fan and plan on waiting in line to watch the movie, you've got to leave me a comment and let me know how good it was.  I really hope they stick with the books' storyline. 

The Carmike here in town are showing 5 matinees, 3 evenings and 1 late show at 11:20. I guess they want to be prepared.

Kids Story
Our diva's imagination has taken her through a cycle of possible career choices. For instance, a couple of weeks ago she was a teacher and swim coach.  This past week she's been a special agent. It's been fun watching her. She'll sneak around with her pretend glock looking for bad guys and clues. Bless her heart, the only thing is she can't stop smiling or giggling while on the job. LOL! Last night, her career choice changed once again. I thought I was going to fall out when I found her in the bed with daddy. Doug had this smirk on his face. Asked what was going on and he informed me that she was giving him a "Makeover". Oh really. I don't know where she got the word "makeover", but she oblivously knew what it meant. She fixed Doug's hair, trimmed his mustache and even brushed his chest hair. Poor Doug was trying to watch the baseball game, so he told Katie that she needed to help me. She gave me a full makeover with makeup and new do. I can't wait to see what she'll be today.

Doug and I wanted to get Flash a ball pit for Christmas last year, but never could find any to stay in the house.  As you know, all the stores are exploding with "Toy Story 3" toys and stuff.  Walmart had a few TS3 ball pits, I debated on getting it.  Then, I thought what if we decide we want to get it for him again.  So it ended up in our buggy some how.  It's so cute and the kids love it. 

I gave Katie a talking to about how she should take care of stuff and especially this ball pit.
and here I was worried about Katie tearing it up.

Colton sees it as a game . . . to attack Katie when she's in the ball pit

My beautiful Stargazer Lilies are in full bloom

They give out the sweetest smell all throughout the house.


Monday, June 28, 2010

Things Worth Mentioning

I got an email today from my favorite restaurant "P.F. Chang's". They are having a good deal going on right now until July 30th. Just click on their WEBSITE HERE for the Briny Golf Challange 2010, submit your email address and you'll get a coupon for one free lettuce wrap per person with your next entree. SWEET! I'm all ready to go.

Speaking of P.F. Chang's, I am loving their new meals that you can pick up at your local grocery store for $7 a pack. We've tried their "General Chang's Chicken", "Beef and Broccoli" and "Shrimp Fried Rice". We didn't care for the "Shrimp Fried Rice" and the "General Chang's Chicken" tasted just like "General Tso's Chicken" to me.

Movies In Review
Beings that the heat index is around 100 degrees, we have no Movie Gallery anymore and we have three Redboxes in the area. Doug, Katie and I have been viewing quite a few movies lately.

It's Complicated
Sure, I may not relate to this storyline, but it was so hilarious! Grant it, I've never been a big Alec Baldwin fan, but he and Meryl Streep were awesome in this movie.

I have to tell you, this movie isn't a family movie.

When In Rome
This is such a sweet and funny romantic film.  I really enjoyed the storyline and Josh Duhamel is your basic eye candy.  This is a PG-13 movie and not suitable for the whole family.

The Book of Eli
Right off the bat, I didn't know if I would like this movie at all. I gave it a chance because Denzel Washington was the main character. I'm not too much for the end of the world type movie and how everything turns to dust and how life as we know it is gone. How depressing is that? The story of Eli (main character) was nice and good; however, I think they could have done a lot without the cussing. It wasn't my favorite movie.

The Spy Next Door
It was cute and Katie found it a humorous movie, starring Jackie Chan. I really like Jackie Chan movies. It's rated PG, so I watched it carefully with Katie. The only thing that I saw was the fighting, which makes me think that's why it was rated PG.

Valentine's Day
This was a sweet movie. There are twists and turns. One thing is true, love hurts and there is hope for even the loneliest on Valentine's Day. I really like the soundtrack for this film, I'll have to check it out in the store.  It was kind of funny how they had Taylor Swift as a ditzy blonde. 


Just A Little Update

Swimming Lessons
Just a few photos to share with you from Katie's swimming lessons.  She was so sad that they ended.
Katie waiting to go to Swim Class

Katie practicing kicking those fins

Katie practicing her reaching technique
I was so proud of Katie on Friday. She swam a very short distance from the edge of the pool to Mrs. RA without any help or flotation device. For a reward, RA let her swirl around in the whirl pool for a little bit. Katie said it was so much fun.

She had been begging to swim at her aunt June's for a few days. So, I thought it would be nice if Doug could watch Colton, while Katie and I spent the day together. We had a great mommy and daughter day. After our last swim lesson, we had breakfast together, rented a movie and headed over to mom and dad's to go swimming. Katie did so good jumping into the pool and swimming without help. Now that she has learned to hold her breath well, going under the water that is all she wants to do.

Colton Gets His Hair Cut

Colton getting his hair cut professionally

I was so proud of him, he sat so still

Prayer Request
My friend, D, that I've asked for prayers isn't doing well at all.  Treatments were stopped week before last because of her physical condition.  She is currently in a lot of pain and can't keep anything down.  So, it was felt that the treatments had to put on hold until her physical body could try and gain some strength.  She told another friend of ours that she has peace and knows that it is in God's hands. Please continue to keep her in your prayers.

My mother spoke to my great aunt Mary the other day and she sounds very weak.  She is home from the nursing home and glad to be back home.  She will be celebrating her 100th birthday very soon.  Mom, dad and Maryann will be visiting very soon.  I know aunt Mary will be so pleased to see them. 

Monday, June 21, 2010

My Little Mermaid

Katie's Swimming Lessons
Today was the first day of Katie's swimming lessons with Mrs. RA. Bless her heart, she was a bundle of nerves. She was so excited, but nervous. Poor baby was on the couch and I noticed her tearing up. Taking it serious, I sat down beside her and asked her what was the matter. With her lip stuck out, she said "I wish you could watch me swim." {Awww!} The past couple of years at the old facility, I've had to drop her off and come back in a half hour to pick her up. I didn't know what to expect at the new facility, so I promised to get there a little early and watch for a few minutes. She felt better after my pep talk.

Oh my goodness, the new facility is AWESOME! After looking around the outside and inside pool area of the Aquatic Center and I fell in love. It's too bad, I'm not exactly in bathingsuit shape. I didn't get to check out the weight room or any of the other accomodations, but WOW I was amazed. Katie begged me to stay a little longer and let her play on the playground by the pool. HAHA! I had a hard time explaining to her that the slides were part of the pool. She's never seen anything like that, her eyes were HUGE. Plus, we are not members . . . yet. A friend of mine, Shelley, is a member and she said that they are only paying for membership during the Summer months at $75 a month. Talking with Maryann and Whitney last night, they told me that they offer family rates at $65 a month. I told Maryann, I'd love to join for the weight room when Katie starts school because they have a secure daycare center available. Doesn't it sound great to drop off Katie at school, take Colton to daycare and workout for about an hour a day. We might have to see if it can happen.

As soon as we met up with RA, she took us to the inside pool area, which was so nice. Guess what? Colton and I actually got to stay in the atrium area by the pool and watch Katie swim. Us there made her so happy. She did good swimming with RA. RA kept the flotation device off of her during most of their training. I guess she felt Katie was ready to swim without the device, with her keeping it off of her most of the time. She put it on her to practice her reaching with her arms. I think she liked the flippers on her feet. LOL! She looked like a little fish flopping around in her flippers and goggles.

I posted a few months ago about finding out that we had a local swim team and how I think Katie would love to be a member. She LOVES the water and she is doing so great swimming. I mentioned it to RA this morning and she seems to think Katie will do well. I asked her when she thinks she'll be ready to be apart of the team. She wants to work with her for a couple more years. She feels that Katie should be ready for the team when she turns 6 years old. She said the coaches want the children ready when they can swim a full lap, which she feels Katie is almost there. I got to see some of the team practicing in the outside pool. RA told me that the coaches are there every morning and she wants me to go talk with them about Katie. Hopefully, I'll get a chance to talk with one of them tomorrow. Wish me luck.

Bathroom Update
The painting is finished and all the rods and holders are hung. When I went to hang up my picture frames, I noticed one important detail that I didn't notice when I purchased them. One of the frames didn't have a anchor on the back of the frame. Ugh! On top of that, it was my favorite of the two frames. Hobby Lobby still has their frames 50% off, so I'm going to see if I can find something else. If I can't, I'll just make this frame work. I really like my metal design above the toilet, so I'm going to see if I can find something else to go above the light switches. Needless to say, I don't have any of my decorations hung yet. I did find a valance that I thought would go well. The fabric seems to go well with the shower curtain. I think I'm going to have to break down and put blinds back up. I was hoping to put up all curtains, but my window is so small that I can't find anything that will really go well.



I hope you can see the color wash, I took a close enough picture of it.

Lessons learned - don't purchase curtain rods where you have to apply adhesive or possibly glue on it in order for it to stick to the wall. Why I say this you ask? Well, Doug had to use a hammer to knock off the bases of the curtain rod. It took forever to knock it off the wall. Doug hit it so hard that I just knew he was going to knock a hole in the wall. My newly painted wall. Ugh! The only damage the wall suffered was a little ripped drywall. I applied compound, sanded and went to work painting. No big deal.

Father's Day
I hope you had a wonderful Father's Day yesterday. We were fortunate enough to go to two different places to celebrate with our dads. First, Katie and Colton spent a little time with their daddy before we went to church. Katie's card was so touching to Doug, a moment that will be treasured. I wanted to get a picture of my dad with the kids, but I don't think he and mom were feeling too good.  So, we'll have to take that picture at another time.

Bunny in Papaw Millard's yard

Baby birds just hatched


Saturday, June 19, 2010

Operation Remodel Bathroom Almost Complete

Operation Remodel Bathroom is almost complete!  I worked on the room from 10AM-1AM yesterday.   It being my first day, I did all the repairs and prepped the room.  Luckily, I was able to get 2 coats of Kilz and paint on all 4 walls and ceiling.  Yay!  I was so tired, but the rewards were great. 

Some before pictures.  The walls are a cream color with cranberry trim and accents of dark green. 

Today (day 2), I spot painted and color washed the room.  I've never color washed a room before in my life.  I debated on doing it from the get go because I'm always afraid of doing something new or different that is this big.  I'm glad I did it though.  The clerk that helped me from Lowe's reminded me about starting the color wash behind a door in the corner first, until I got the hang of it.  Well, what if you don't have a wall behind your door?  I decided to chance it  start the color wash/lime wash behind my toilet and in that corner.  I have to tell you when I first started, I was thinking to myself, WHAT THE HECK WAS I THINKING?  I just knew that it was going to look awful and it's not a professional job by no means, but I was worried concerned a GREAT deal.  I just took my cheesecloth and dabbed and rubbed down in spots, to soften it.  I didn't get the softening brush because the directions stated that you could use either the brush or cheesecloth.  Here lately, I've been keeping a supply of cheesecloth.  Don't ask me why.  While I was texturing my newly painted walls thinking oh my gosh, I'm going to have to paint all of this over, I could see some glimmer of hope.  Thinking to myself, I wanted to paint a section of the room and then I would step back and see if I love it or hate it.  I'm glad I did because I nearly stopped and was about to repaint over it.  As I kept texturing, I could see the creation and really enjoyed doing it.  I was hoping Doug wouldn't come into the room until I got most of it done, but he slipped in when I got a small section finished and came unglued and was as concerned as I was.  LOL!  I just told him to leave and come back when I got more done.  We both really like the effect the color wash leaves on your walls.  We're glad we decided to do it now and it was so simple.  It's not hard to do, but you need to go by the directions of how to color wash/lime wash.  The wash dries really fast.  You apply a LIGHT (barely touch the wall - that light) coat with a 1'x1' "X" on the wall, followed by several small "x"s all over the wall until the glaze is gone from your brush.  Like I said, the glaze dries fast, so you'll have to brush those x's.  At one point, Doug thought I was beating the wall with the brush.  LOL!  Well, it's just that I was working fast, so the white glaze would lighten up and give the effect I wanted.  When we paint the Kitchen/Dining Room/Living Room areas, I think the color wash would look great.  I'm planning on painting these rooms in warm colors.  I haven't decided on a particular color, but it will be along the line of taupe or a type of coffee.  By the way when you pick up color wash it is naturally in the color white, but you can have it tinted in another color. 

Here's a sneak peek of yesterday's finished paint job.  You'll have to over look all the reflections bouncing all over the room. 

Light from the flash bounced off the mirror some how and now I have a reflection on my new wall. 
I don't have any pictures of the color wash today, but stay tuned. . .

Tomorrow, I plan to hang up our new bathroom wares (towel rack, hand towel holder, shower curtain rod and paper holder).  I have yet to find valances/panel to hang up in the window.  Ugh!  I thought about just making them, but mom informed me that her sewing machine is not working properly because dad tried using it.  So we're on to step 3, I'll have to go with another color for the curtains.  Since there are touches of antique white/off white, surely I can find some lace curtains.  Beings that I threw away the blinds that were in the room because I dropped a piece of hardware down the vent . . . oops, our curtains are currently a piece of newspaper taped on the glass.  HAHA! 

You've heard of the saying, "when it rains it pours."  Well, it came a down pouring these past couple of days and all I could do was laugh about it.  Day before yesterday, I kept running into brick walls when I was trying to get things lined up for my paint job.  Today with me painting the bathroom, it's been hard to use the sink because of all the stuff on the counter top.  So we've been using the Kitchen sink in it's place.  I was in the process of cleaning up my mess in the bathroom and went to wash my hands in the Kitchen sink when a nice fountain was pouring down onto my feet from below.  Yep!  You guessed it.  The Kitchen pipe busted. No, let me rephrase that it disintegrated and I've got the pictures to prove it.  Doug and I began laughing as soon as he pulled it out from underneath the sink.  We couldn't believe how it just fell apart.  Lowe's here we come.  While we were there, I went ahead and picked up the bathroom wares (towel holders and paper holder).  I haven't decided on the hooks on the back of the door.  I would like to have another 3 hooks, but I may have to get 3 or 4 individual ones.  {hmm} Decisions, decisions. 

You probably can't tell, but that's a huge hole in the middle of the pipe
This part just fell off.  Doug decided to install PVC this time around.

By the end of the day, the bathroom got cleaned up and the sink was fixed, thanks to my handy wonderful husband. 

Tip of the Day: You may already know this tip, but I discovered it this afternoon when I needed some paint thinner.  Not having any paint thinner in the house, I thought "why not fingernail polish remover?"  It's basically a paint thinner just in a small container.  I had some paint on my skin and little droplets on the bathroom floor.  The polish remover worked really well.  I guess, I went through about 6 cotton pads with polish remover on it.  Now, before you think "my gosh Mirya, don't you believe in drop clothes?"  Hold on.  I did use drop clothes.  I've recently discovered that I have a mild case of Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), I can't stay focused on one thing for very long and then I catch myself merging over into something else.  Luckily, I'm able to slap myself back into focus.  So, I started cleaning off the paint spots and discovered that the polish remover does good to get the stubborn residue that catches in the dimples and dents in your linoleum.  Before I know it, I'm down on my hands and knees working the cotton pad in the corner crack of the floor, trying to get this dark speck out.  Ugh!  Needless to say, after the labor I've been doing around here, I had to rub my neck and shoulders down with Aspercream (scentless of course).  Ahhh! 

Great Finds

I've been trying to fit some healthy ingredients to me and my family, you've read my past posts about Whole Grain, High Fiber Diets and all that.  So, I wanted to get us some oatmeal cookies.  Well, if you like oatmeal and chocolate chips, you might like "Chips Ahoy Oatmeal Chewy Cookies"  Oh, Colton and I love them.  Doug and Katie are birds of another species.  I think Colton is going to be a lot like me when it comes to chocolate.  He loves it!  Katie and Doug both prefer vanilla over chocolate.  Colton and I just don't understand that reasoning.

Cooking Suggestions
As you know, I've been mastering pizza.  BLAHAHA!  Bottomline, you can't mess up a pizza!  Last time I made pizza with pesto, Doug remarked how he didn't like the pesto at all.  I have to admit, it gave me terrible heartburn.  So this time around, I made sure to put just marinara sauce on the pizza crust.  I substituted the ground beef for ground turkey.  We really liked the ground turkey and will be adding it a lot more to my pizza creations.  I think this one I made was a big time winner because we (Doug, Katie and I) had to go back for seconds.  The toppings included: ground turkey, ground pork sausage, crumbled bacon, sliced black olives, sliced button mushrooms, ripe diced tomatoes, diced green peppers, diced onions and lots of mozzarella and provolone cheeses on a whole wheat crust.  YUM!

Katie had to have her picture taken

Movie Time
Katie's had a hard time controlling herself from all the excitement because she found out that "Toy Story 3" is out and her grandparents have agreed to take her this weekend, if nothing happens.  The movie is suppose to be in 3D, so Doug and I were trying to explain to Katie about having to keep her glasses on throughout the whole movie.  At first, she said she could watch the movie without glasses.  After we explained the way the movie would be, she told us "but it's not real it's just a movie."  Finally, she told us that she would keep the glasses on during the movie.  We'll see if she'll do it throughout the whole movie. 

Ya know, I thought I would have a couple more years down the road before I had to deal with "The Miss Know It All."  You know her or him, if you have sons.  You have a dear sweet child, who holds on to every word that you say as the gospel.  Then before you know it "MKIA" creeps into your sweet angels life and as time marches on the "MKIA" takes over completely until they reach about 14 years old and then it morphes into "I Da Know" kid. I've probably posted about this before, but guess what?  I'm venting again.  Katie is an overall great kid and the sweetest thing you'll ever know, she just likes to keep that person locked up and I'm still trying to find where she's hiding her.  She has to have the hardest head {figuratively speaking} and will do just about anything to get a charge out of me.  What's so bad is Colton is falling right in line behind her.  What sister does; therefore, he shall do as well and she loves it.  Ugh!  When we go to Walmart, I never take the same route and all I hear from the back seat driver is "momma, do you know where you're going?  I don't think this is where Walmart's at?  Momma, are you sure?  Oh no, we're lost!"  Now, I'm sure you reading this can find lots of humor, I can too NOW.  At the moment, all I can think of is my happy place.  Like Jim Carey in "Dumb and Dumber" when they stopped off at a gas station and the truck driver arrived.  "Think of a happy place."  Yeah, it can start to get next to ya.  It's amazing, I've had my driver's license for 20 years, lived in the same town for over 30 years and never knew I was lost because I was once one of those . . . (tada) "Miss Know It All".  She doesn't limit herself to just directions to Walmart.  Oh, no!  This is a constant thing about everything, even washing my hands.  We were getting ready to eat, I washed my hands and I told her to wash hers.  She didn't see me washing mine and asked me if I washed my hands.  When I said "yes," she went as far as asking "are you sure?"  I try not to tell her where we are going.  She'll ask where we are going, but I try to tell her "just sit back and enjoy the ride."  She doesn't like it when I tell her that.  Sometimes, she aggravates me so much that I have a tendency to cave and finally tell her.  Ugh!   Lord, give me patience. 

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

"Oh Lord, Please Help Me!"

Prayer Request
My cousin just contacted us this morning to let us know that she heard from my great aunt Mary's daughter-in-law. Mary's home from the hospital this morning, but is too weak to celebrate her 100th birthday. Thank you for all the prayers. 

Great Finds
If you have a Movie Gallery close by you, you probably already know that they are going out of business.  It has made Doug and myself so sad because it was the main movie rental place, we would rent our movies.  As you probably know about me is I don't really care to go to the movie theaters.  Doug practicely has to drag me to the theater or it would have to be a movie that I really really want to watch.  Anyway, Movie Gallery has all of their movies and games on sale.  We were out riding around the other day.  While waiting to pick up our pizza order, Katie and I walked around the store to see if there was anything we had to have.  We picked up a Blu-ray of "Marley and Me" and "Made of Honor" both for $20.  While we were being checked out at Movie Gallery, the clerk and I were talking about the closure.  I asked him what happened to make them all of the sudden go bankrupt.  He agreed with me that they were doing great.  That is until the company decided to buy out Hollywood Rentals.  He added "that's when everything went downhill."

Doug and I tried out Redbox this past weekend.  I was pleasantly surprised at the quality for the price $1.07 each movie.  The only bad thing is it's a one day rental.  I got to reserve the movies, "The Young Victoria" and "Tooth Fairy" online and it had an option to rent the movies for an extra day.  The closest Redbox to us is Walmart and Walgreens.  So far, I like the Redbox because the online option.  You can see what they have in stock and go ahead and reserve the copies, you want.  So nice!  No lines or leaving empty handed.  They also have Blu-ray available for $1.75 per copy. 

Gymboree is getting ready for Fall because a lot of their past styles are 70% off.  There are some really cute outfits for 70% off the original price.  CLICK HERE for Gymboree savings.

The Children's Place sent me an email message advertising that they had a lot of their Summer clothes on sale. There are select items for $3.99 each. You'll have to check it out.

Katie & Colton Story
As of today, my official nickname for my children are "Diva" and "Flash".  Can you guess which name matches which child?  As Colton gets a little older and better at running, he is as quick as lightning.  I have to be extremely quick when it comes to getting groceries in or out of the fridge and cabinets.  It's like a blurr when his hands get in there and grabbing stuff.  If he can successfully grab any object, without me catching him, {with a smirk on his face} he'll run just as fast as he possibly can. 

When we use a cooler during the weekend, we have a bad habit of leaving the cooler in the house and just take the drinks out of the cooler instead of the fridge.  This habit we're going to have to stop.  I placed the cooler up underneath the Dining Room table, so Colton wouldn't be climbing on it.  Well this afternoon, Colton decided to pull this very full (of melted ice) cooler over.  Yeah, he is our little Hercules.  The cooler was a small Igloo, but still.  Of course, most of the water poured out onto the carpet.  COLD ICE WATER!  As soon as I put the cooler outside, I went grabbing towels to clean up all of Lake Erie in our Dining Room.  Very humble and sincere, Katie folds her hands, looks up at the ceil and says, "Oh dear Lord, please help me!"  LOL!  Trying to hold back the spurts of laughter, I told her that she is listening to mom way too much.  'Cause when things get a little stressing around here and I feel like I'm living in a zoo instead of a house, I pray A LOT. 

Have you ever seen the new Snickers commercials with Aretha Franklin?  That is Katie all over at times!  I love the new Snickers commercials -

Father's Day Crafts
Katie worked on her Father's Day crafts today, in between her studies.   
Katie colored some really nice coloring pages, we created some Father's Day coupons and each greeting card with a story to each one. After she finished her picture, she would tell me what's going on in the picture and I would write it down. She also insisted on writing Colton's name inside each card.  I'd spell his name out and she'd write it down.   

Movie's In Review
Tooth Fairy with Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson and Julie Andrews was a sweet children's story with a great moral to the story.  Just because you don't see it doesn't mean it's not real.  Keep your childlike faith and the belief in your imagination alive. 

The Young Victoria with Emily Blunt was interesting to watch and very entertaining for me.  I've always been interested in the Royals, most of my life.  Doug says I'm crazy for watching something like this, but I enjoyed watching it.  Isn't it amazing how history continues to repeat itself, especially when it comes to corruption in any administration?  It doesn't matter who you are, where you live or where you work, there's always at least one rotten apple ready to infect the barrel full of beautiful ripe apples. I thought the romantic story between her and Prince Albert was sweet, despite the fact they were cousins. 

I compared the storyline with her biography and it seemed to be fairly accurate.    


Prayer, Food, Twilight and Father's . . . what else is there?

Prayer Request
My friend, D, that I've asked for prayer has gone through her 4th week of radiation treatments and have 2 more weeks to go. She started back on the Chemo therapy and the effects are beginning to wear on her. She said that soon after the treatments, doctors plan to take a biopsy of the tumor and from there will determine what course of action will follow. She's been receiving cards, calls and pictures from all of her friends and family. I think they've kept her going. Please continue to keep her in your prayers.

Great Recipes To Bookmark
During VBS, Katie and I made the workers cookies.  The only problem was that I couldn't find my new "Royal Icing" recipe right off the bat, in order to whip up some icing to put on the cookies.  I did eventually find the recipe sandwiched between several other "Mirya's Favorites" in my homemade cookbook.  I've gotten so dependent on my blog to grab a recipe that I need right away.  To my surprise, I still had my old Royal Icing recipe on here.  Ugh!  So, I deleted the old and am posting the new, this way I have easy access and now so do you.  Happy Eats!  

Royal Icing Recipe
from Martha Stewart Show, April 2006
Ingredients: (Makes 2 1/3 cups)
1 box (1 lb) confectioners' sugar
5 tablespoons meringue powder or 2 large egg whites

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine sugar and meringue powder. Mixing on low speed, add a scant 1/2 cup water. For a thinner consistency, usually used for flooding, add more water. A Thicker consistency is generally used for outlining and adding details. Mix until icing holds a ribbonlike trail on the surface of the mixture for 5 seconds when you raise the paddle.

Mirya's notes: watch the additional water added, you can get a little carried away.
I add a little flavoring approximately 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla, almond or peppermint flavoring (which ever you prefer). Add to taste. Sometimes, I add a little more.

Twilight Saga
Okay, how many of you Twilight fans are getting excited about the new movie "Eclipse" coming out June 30th?  Yay!  I was hoping to revisit this book just to refresh my memory before the big premiere, but I've gotten somewhat involved with Nicholas Sparks, "The Last Song." 

With all the latest activities around the Mason household, I've only been able to read 5 chapters.  So far, it's a pretty good book.  I'll have to give you my review as soon as I'm finished.  Hold on because the way it's been around here, it may not be until next Fall. {LOL!}

Twilight Saga:Eclipse Movie Trailer

Father's Day Children's Crafts
My children are still too young to do really BIG crafts for daddy and their Paw-paws. Plus, I only have so many nerves left that I don't think I could survive the weekend, if we tried some of these bakes and crafts.  So, I think we are going to stick to more simple crafts. Katie has gotten good with her drawings.  I think they'll make the perfect gift. Saying that, I must pass along some great finds that I found, while searching for some creative ideas.
Is this not cute or what? It looks so simple as well. If you look closely, it's just a regular cupcake topped with dyed green coconut. The lawn mower is made from a Hershey's Nugget, M&M's for the wheels and engine and a black licorice lace as the handle. So cute! Of course, all the M&M's are held in place with small dabs of icing. For the recipe and further information, check it out at Disney FamilyFun website. Disney FamilyFun also has some cute printable "Dad Coupons" HERE along with some other cute ideas.

Martha posted instructions and diagram of how to make these cute paper shirt and tie cards/crafts. There are 8 positive ratings, stating the craft was easy and are their favorite. I haven't done this craft simply because I didn't have an 8x14" piece of decorative paper. It looks like fun and I hope to come back here this time next year for the kids.
Martha Stewart also has template retro designs available for these cool Father's Day Retro Labels.

For our little ones, you can find some great printables at DLTK's "Father's Day Activities" and some sweet bakes and crafts from I hope you will share with me your plans or if you know of some great websites, celebrating Father's Day.

I have to give a quick "KUDOS" to Google Blogger for all the positive changes for their customers. I've had lots of fun, play around with the the new layouts and ways to create my blog that says "ME". I encourage them to continue the great job. Saying this, the rumor mill is that Google Blogger are considering charging their customers for access to their blogs. I really hope that they will refrain from this decision because I love blogging, but might have to stop if it goes in that direction. :(


Saturday, June 12, 2010

Picture Day

VBS Photos
A few arts and crafts, Katie did in class during VBS.  She brought home a new craft every day.  We'll have to find a perfect spot outside for the bird feeder.   

Everyday was a different theme - Saddle Ridge Ranch T-shirt day (2 days), Hat day, Denium day, and Bandana day. She had an opportunity to go to the Aquatic Center, but we had company coming over for supper. 

My aunt Sherry and uncle Roger were in town and we wanted them to come over for supper. We had a very nice Country Boil with crab legs, shrimp, corn on the cob and potatoes. My nephew is allergic to shell fish, so there was also fried chicken, potato salad and green beans. For dessert, I whipped up some brownies for Hot Fudge Brownies. Kim Ann brought a Strawberry Angel Food Cake and Lemon Bread. Everything was so good! I think everyone went away satisfied.

I've been trying to get Katie to just try boiled shrimp, but I never could get her past the smell.  LOL!  Well last night, I guess she thought she was missing out on something because she asked me for a taste of shrimp.  Yay, she liked it!  She ate a small serving of the shrimp.  I was so surprised because children will eat fried shrimp before they will boiled.  Well, she wanted a late night snack before going to bed.  Doug fixed her a plate of shrimp.  He didn't de-vein and apparently left a shell on one of them.  We heard her gagging in her bedroom. Doug went to check it out and came back to tell me that she won't eat anymore shrimp.  Ugh!  I went to check things out.  She told me the shrimp was scratching her throat.  That's when I knew what happened.  I explained to her about the shell, while Doug checked all the other shrimp for shells.  My great efforts came to an end.  Katie had a bad experience and won't try them again, for a long time.