In case you haven't noticed, there is an additional child in our family photo. I would like you all to meet the newest member of our family. She is the pretty little 7 year old in the purple dress. "Eloise" now has a little sister. We have decided to call her, "Amelia Bedelia".

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Culinary Vacation ...


 Love Me Some Shrimp & Grits!
This is a classic New Orleans dish,
but just like Gumbo, the recipes vary greatly.
This was delish !
 I even loved the hush puppies 
 and I'm not really a hush puppy kind of girl.
Service was 5 star . . . 
not sure if this was due to the fact that one of the people in our party knows the owners.
Thanks Thomas!

 Sometimes I like to shift gears and wander away, but not too far, from all of the fatty comfort foods.
This restaurant has a McAlister's Deli goes Mediterranean feel.
This is a great place to get a fresh, colorful, tasty lunch.
I had the Salad Sampler: 
chicken, pasta, & potato salad 
with a side of hummus & pita.
Eloise had a chicken quesadilla & fruit   
We would definitely eat here again.
 Yes, I am aware that Fuze isn't exactly healthy, but I only indulge occasionally.

 Thanks to Hubby's and Thomas'
 willingness to humor me,
 we ate at an authentic Cuban restaurant recently.
 I love the whole experience of ethnic dining.
Atmosphere, personality, and flavors combine to create an "experience".
 Cleanliness, service, and flavor all received an "A".
Presentation was a little lacking . . . so I say, "C"
Overall it was a pleasant meal.
(grandma's meatballs, potatoes, & carrots in gravy with congri and fried plantains)
 Eloise tried the restaurants signature desert.
She loves churros.
 I think you can see
 how I felt about the Tres Leches!
The cake almost covered this desert plate. 
I did give out a few samples before I inhaled the rest.

In the midst of all of our touring and sampling, hubby and I make it a point to donate blood every couple of months. It doesn't take long, it's fairly painless, and it could possibly save a life.
Not preaching, Just saying . . .
W.W.J.D. ? ! ?
I think we all know the answer to that one.


Monday, January 30, 2012

Emotional Roller Coaster.....

I am sitting here completely spent.
As soon as I finish typing this I will probably melt into my mattress and fall fast asleep. 
I thought sharing the events of today would help me unwind.
I am amazed that in less than 24 hours I have experienced so many emotions.

This one is normal for a Sunday, because hubby drives the church bus, I teach Sunday school twice, then we race home for Sunday Evening Worship service.
Because the little office in the VFW hall in Houma is starting to look more and more like a Sunday School class.
I am not exaggerating about this one y'all. The service tonight was off the charts. We have had plenty of awesome services, but this was different. It started with the usual dance and shout, but then a sweet spirit of  love and healing swept through the church. All I could do was smile and cry, as I looked around at my beautiful church family. Everyone was binding together to pray for each others needs, then the dance and shout resumed. After a bit of praying for others, I began to pray for myself. I prayed till I temporarily lost my voice. When the service was over, many people lingered; simply enjoying each others company and the presence of the Lord.
Tired and hungry from a couple of hours of intense worship, a few of us went out for a snack. I had just gotten seated when I noticed a girl that I went to middle school with. She was once beautiful and seemingly happy. Tonight she looked like an empty shell; what was left after satan had stripped her of everything good.
I thought about talking to her, but wondered if she would even remember me. She was clearly intoxicated and I have only seen her once or twice in the past 22 years. I tried to eat, but didn't get one bite before my feet led me swiftly to the counter where she was trying to order. She immediately cleared up just long enough to get my name out and hug me. She proceeded to tell me through hazy, tear stained eyes that she had to grab the few bags that she had and run out the door before her husband started beating her again. I asked her what she was going to do. She said that she was going to walk to her grandpas house. It was cold and she could barely stand, let alone walk. I offered to give her a ride. Hubby sat in the back with Eloise and I drove. She told me that her grandfather lived in town....
....well just on the other side of the tracks. As we proceeded into a dark scary part of New Orleans I began to pray under my breath. She began to explain that her grandpa didn't know she was coming, but that he would let her stay, because she brought him a bottle of wine(what?!?). Struggling for words, I gave her my card and told her that coming to church might help to clear her mind.
-At that moment-
there were police cars in front of us and behind us. Before I knew what was going on there was a police officer with a gun pointed at my windshield yelling for all of us to, "PUT YOUR HANDS UP". We quickly did so. A few other officers came closer to the car and questioned everyone in the car. I was still praying under my breath, because I teach at our local jail and I knew that this woman had a previous arrest record. Jail is where I had seen her those couple of times. 
After looking at our drivers' licenses they turned their attention to our passenger. It was obvious they didn't completely buy her story about her grandfather, but they let her go to the house. They then apologized for scaring us, but advised us to get back on our side of the border. We waited to make sure she got inside safely. When the door opened, I could clearly see that it was not her grandfather, as she and all of her 10 siblings are Caucasian and this gentleman was not. The man that opened the door had a look of contempt on his face, but when he noticed the bottle sticking up out of her bag he let her in. 
As we pulled of I could only pray that the contents of the bottle was the only thing she would have to give up in exchange for shelter.

I turned the car towards home,
 safety, warmth, love. . .
. . .God.
Tears began to well up.
I began to admonish my baby girl. I told her not to ever believe the lie that the grass is greener outside of the Church. I also explained that the devil comes in many disguises and that it doesn't matter what he looks like he isn't our friend. His goal is to rob us of any thing that reminds him of God. He can't stand the idea that God loves us.
The Bible says,
"In the beginning God created. . . .
. . . and He saw that it was good"
God did not create us for abuse of any kind.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Now What....

It seems that every so often I find myself in a period of transition. It is an uncomfortable place for this "control freak" to find herself. Deep down my desire is to please the Lord, but sometimes my flesh gets all in a panic and won't shut up long enough for me to hear the voice of God. I won't go into all of the details, but there are several big decisions that hubby and I must make in the coming year. 

I keep thinking about something that Bro. Sean said in one of his sermons. He said, "just because something is a good thing....it may not be the right thing for you at this time."

I have also been pondering a message that myPastor recently preached. He talked about how people tend to live their lives without ever consulting God or their pastor. I don't want to be like that. I realize that I need God and His wisdom every day that I live.

I had to reach way back in the archives to dig out this song that I used to listen to.
I posted it, because it adequately expresses how I feel  what I know.
"I know the me without you(Jesus) is a lie"

Every good thing in my life is because God saw fit to save me and use me for His purpose, therefor I owe it to Him to go where he leads me.....
Now if I could just figure out where that is!


P.S. Do you like this song?

Monday, January 23, 2012


BTW: I posted two new recipes on my recipe tab.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Our First Order....

This is what we came up with for our very first customer.
She is getting ready to re-style her kitchen in brown and green.
As you can see the "plumbing" still needs to be done, before this is a genuine soap dispenser.
It will have a white pump, like the samples I posted a few days ago.
Hopefully this cutie will arrive at it's new home within this next week.

I can't wait to show you some of the other crafts
 we're going to be doing.


Friday, January 20, 2012

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Cooking 101....

To learn about our latest outing click on the link to our homeschool blog on the side.
Our School blog is called, "Ecole de Famille" for those of you who are new.

Before you head over there, scroll down to the previous post, if you haven't seen our latest craft yet.

Love & Prayers,

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Our Latest Money Making Scheme....

 Right now Eloise and I are tossing around ideas and tweaking them a bit.
There are several ideas we haven't tried yet like beaded, jeweled, or buttoned jar collars.
We think the Monogram design will be a hit in this narcissistic/Facebook world.
Not hating....just sayin'.

These are quart sized jars, so I think they are perfect for dish soap.
An added benefit is that the pump will help me to resist the urge
 to squeeze the whole bottle into my dish water.
We will be making smaller ones for hand soap. At the moment I am using Green Works dish liquid, but this weekend I am taking a trip to Whole Foods, so I can test a dish soap recipe. If the Whole Foods brand of castile soap works well, then I can save money. WF brand is almost half the price of Dr.Bronners.

 We were just using left over ribbon bits, but we think this design would look better with a white cap and writing. We would also use a little raffia in addition to the gingham in order to give this a country feel.

Let me just pause here and say that the "fleur de lis" was a symbol used to show our French heritage long before those guys ever cut their front teeth....let alone passed a pig skin!

We are also going to type up a few home made soap(hand & dish) recipes and place them in the jars.

If you have any suggestions feel free to post them in the comments area....
Just say it in a "good Christian way".
I don't like ugly people or comments.

I will be posting later about some of our other craft ideas. We are trying to get a jump on Spring/Summer for all of the craft shows and festivals.

Love & Prayers,

Monday, January 16, 2012

Out And About.....

 One of our favorite "little brothers" at one of our favorite places.

 Would somebody please teach those guys how to smile?

 Looks like "Queenie" has an admirer.
(you had to be there to understand)

Last, but not least....
this is one of the newest additions to our youth department.

Editors Note: this picture is edited, because TomCat   someone who shall remain nameless was doing his best Dwayne R. impersonation in the background.

No... this isn't the only place we go, but it is a nice, safe, inexpensive place to have fun
and everyone seems to enjoy it.

P.S. If you are looking for the slime recipe that Eloise promised you, simply click on the link to our homeschool blog. 

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Did You Know.....

 Each year our youth committee holds a meeting to plan out the events for the next 12 months. I decided to make it special by reviving a tradition I tried to start when hubby and I first got married. Many people don't realize that the official end of the Christmas season is called Twelfth Night and doesn't happen until the 12th night after Christmas. 

-You don't have to twist my arm to get me to extend the holidays-

 Twelfth Night was designated as the night that the wise men visited the baby Jesus, because they actually came a little while after he was born. Some sources say it commemorates the time that Jesus was presented at the temple and was identified as the Messiah.
Either way seems like a great reason to celebrate. Truth be known, I don't really need a reason.
Any excuse will do when it comes to breaking out the candles and food.

Besides the sushi, cucumber boat, beef wrapped asparagus, veggies, and cheeses, we also had appetizers in the kitchen, and a desert stand laden with red velvet cupcakes, pastries, and chocolate dipped strawberries.

Some of the savory foods were presented in a tiered buffet with leopard print and red/orange tulips to match the colors in my dishes. Sorry the colors aren't so vivid in the pics. I haven't found a way to capture the candle light and the colors in the same shot.  

 Let me take a moment to back track. The above is a pic of  Eloise's hair-do for our New Year's Eve service at church.

 Eloise and Miss D

 A few of the newest members of our youth department. 

This picture doesn't have anything to do with anything, but I had to show y'all how photogenic my handsome boy is .....even when he's being naughty.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

A Sneak Peek....

 Just wanted to show you one of my Christmas presents.
I love, love, love this book by: Kay Whitt.

 I can truly appreciate her blend of classic and funky designs.

 As I have mentioned in a previous post, I adore color.
 I think that is the biggest reason I was drawn to this book

The book comes complete with patterns, and instructions on how to customize, in a pocket on the back cover.
I am just finishing up a jacket for Eloise,
 so I can only dream right now.
As soon as I finish with that project,
 I will try my hand at the skirt pictured above the pic of this coat of many colors.

I am sew excited!