Monday, April 30, 2007

Mother's Day Par-Tea

Head on over to The Par-Tea Planner's blog to enter in her Mother's Day giveaway.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

7 Me-Me

I'm doing this because I was tagged by ODAT_Kim. Right off the bat, I'm tagging: Wendy, Mom, Aunt Jane, Annsley, hmmm... I don't know if anyone else reads my blog!!! How about Marci (Down on the Farm), Mrs. U (Making A House A Home), and Monica (The Homespun Heart). There- that makes SEVEN tag-you're-its! I think I need to think up my own little contest of sorts to see who really reads my blog. Hmmm... any ideas folks?

Each player starts with 7 random facts/habits about themselves. People who are tagged need to write on their own blog about their seven things, as well as these rules. You need to choose 7 people to get tagged and list their names. Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them that they have been tagged and to read your blog!

  1. At the present time, I am obsessed with the color pink. I don't know why, but I think the girly-girl in me is finally surfacing.

  2. My first vehicle was a 1983 Chevy Scottsdale pick-up truck with plush red interior.

  3. In 1990-1991 I was the county's Dairy Princess and I loved it!

  4. I met my husband on the internet and spent much of our first date, 500+ miles from home, in the hospital with a kidney stone.

  5. I used to ride my horse, Magnium, from sun-up to sun-set in the summers. My parent's have no idea how far away from home I was.

  6. I collect "Mailpouch Barn" memorabillia. I think because my 'Grampy' chewed Mailpouch tobacco.

  7. My friend Dan-Dan drove me home from work once in the midst of a snow storm and we did a donut in the middle of Route 8. He ended up staying at my parent's house for a day or two because the blizzard pretty much covered his car that we affectionately referred to as "The Lil' Pumpkin."

Monday, April 16, 2007

A New Treat For Us

We are really watching our budget these days. We have been wasting A LOT of money and we are certain that much of it is going to eating out. We don't eat out every day, but at least once per week and sometimes more than that depending on how lazy we are about cooking.

After a long day of work, it is a chore to come home and do more chores - dinner making included. But being budget savvy means we batten down the hatches and find a way to make it work. My solution... CROCK POT COOKING!!!! Check out my new Crock Pot. I'm so excited. We had one years ago, but must have given it away as a result of one of our moves or something. I always wanted the kind with the lift-out stoneware, and now I have it! 4 quart is just our size as we have no extra mouths to feed at the moment. Fairly priced $19.99 at Target, I believe we've found ourselves a deal. Keith consented to this purchase. I am certain he is anxious to taste the fruits of our labor in this regard. Now - if I could only get my hands on those liners that Amanda speaks so highly of... they did not have these at Target. Believe me... we looked everywhere!

My first experiment is tonight's dinner... crock pot chicken. I layered carrots, onion, and celery on the bottom and placed a whole frying size chicken on top. (after rinsing and patting dry) I sprinkled on generous amounts of coarse ground salt and pepper and some thyme. I poured a small can of chicken broth around it, slapped the lid on, set it on low and promptly forgot about it.... until NOW....

I think 8 hours would have been plenty, but I had a meeting tonight so it cooked more like 12 hours. Oh well... As soon as I got home I found myself a nice large platter. I was assessing how to lift the chicken out of the pot. With 2 forks or with a pair of tongs? I grabbed ahold of a leg with the tongs and it slipped right up out of the pot away from the body. Hmmm... TENDER... I grabbed a wing and as I layed it on the platter the bone fell out of it... REALLY TENDER!!!! I'm telling you what... I have never made a more tender, juicy, delicious whole chicken EVER! I'm so proud of myself. You know what - my biggest problem is that it is falling off it's bones so well, that even the tiniest back bones are not holding together and I'm going to have to sift them out of the veggies and broth.

This made more than one meal for us. I have indulged myself and will be fixing a plate for Keith as he is working this evening. The rest... the sky's the limit. Hmmm... chicken salad on crackers or sandwiches, chicken noodle soup, casserole, enchiladas.... What do you suggest?

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Meal Planning

Inspired by a post on Julie's Blog, I'm creating a new blog "Menu's By JennyV" for menu planning. It's still in the preliminary stages, but the idea is that I will have a list of favorite recipes for each type of main ingredient (i.e. chicken, pork), and then later I will post the actual recipe and link back to the list. This will be a work in progress, but if you have recipes to share, send them my way and I'll link back to your blog.
Just a few "Paul" pictures to share...

At my wedding with his BEAUTIFUL daughter & flower girl, Joyce.

Atop the monkey bars????

With Me and Mr Faust and our awards... was he praying for us?

Light years ago...

Belated Birthday Wishes

I know I'm a little late, but don't think for a moment that I forgot.
(On Thursday April 12th)

A few things about Paul:

  1. Nickname = PB
  2. When sprouting bat-wings under his hat... "It's time to trim the bush"
  3. He used to drive this old beater truck that had a hole in the floor and whenever I was riding with him, he'd purposely hit mud puddles just to get me wet.
  4. He has a potato launcher... why?
  5. He pushed me off my hobby horse when I was little. At least this is the story and I'm stickin' to it (even tho I don't remember) LOL. I had to get stitches on the inside of my lower lip... scarred for life!
  6. He used to take things apart and put them back together just for fun. He's very good at that sort of thing. I tried that once... the rototiller... it was not a smart move for me.
  7. He once glued a rat (or was it a mouse) on the hood of his truck like a hood ornament. What is wrong with this picture?
  8. When I was 5 years old he was mean to me and in retaliation, I dipped his pet kitty in a bucket of motor oil and threw it down the silo. (again - not my brightest moment... and for the record I would NEVER do that again)
  9. He taught me to put cats in a feed sack and swing them around... good clean farm-life fun. (what was wrong with us!)
  10. He's always willing to lend a hand... he helped us move multiple times, even came to Kentucky to help us move home! He's a great packer - very neat, tidy, and precise. I appreciate him more than he knows.

(disclaimer: Don't be over-alarmed by our childhood monstronsities... growing up on a farm is full of pleasant memories and we would NEVER intentionally hurt a family pet.)

So cheers to Paul for another year of fun and frolic! I hope it was an enjoyable birthday! (Can't wait for next weeks bon fire for Moms! Maybe we should put the fire department on red-alert???!!! LOL)

Saturday, April 14, 2007

New Blog Finds

I was surfing the blogsphere for some new interesting blogs that have not been on my usual list of daily reads. I found this interesting blog:

Mom Advice - not that Mommy stuff is in any way applicable to me, but she has a ton of links to free stuff - samples and such. Cool - one can never gather too many free samples. These are the kind of things I save up for vacation time -- sample size shampoos and such.

I might have some more to add later. I need to do something a little more productive now.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Just Stuff

Time just keeps ticking and most days I feel like we are running in a wheel, going nowhere. Needless to say, we are busy people and we are living our lives a good bit differently than we have for the past seven years.

It is just great to have Keith out of school. Don't get me wrong, I support him completely in his educational endeavors. He is a fabulous teacher and is quite scholarly. He always had good grades, and even graduated from Clarion Cum Laude. It's been an interesting journey we've been on. After all these years of prepping for 'tomorrow,' we feel as if we are finally living for today. Sure, we have aspirations, hopes, dreams, and plans for our lives... but we have dismissed the "living for tomorrow" lifestyle and are loving where we are right now. He may still return to his studies. So may I. Or we may just keep doing what we are doing and allow the events of our non-work lives to transpire.

Couple profound things I've come to learn over the past couple of years -
  1. God has a plan for you, but lets you choose your own path. When you find yourself at the crossroads of life, you can rest assured that there are blessings and hardships whichever path your choose.
  2. God has a plan for you TODAY, don't waste today trying to get to tomorrow's plan.
  3. My plan isn't necessarily God's plan. I begin each day asking the Lord to help me put aside what I want and fill my heart with what He wants. It's not easy, but as time goes by I am realizing that he has greater things in mind for me than what I dream up for myself.

You know, it took me a while but... I've come to realize that Starbucks coffee is not like regular coffee. If you drink it plain, it's not too great. It's made to be served WITH something. Be sure to stop on over to Keith's blog to check out the newest coffee snob brew!

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Mom... This one's for you...

Go to The Homespun Heart to see this family tree craft. It's so YOU!

Don't Pass Up A Chance To Win


To check out the specs of such a machine, go to Dyson's website. This machine is worth over $450!!!

To try your luck at winning, go to 5 Minutes For Mom. But don't waste any time because the contest concludes tomorrow!!!

Happy Easter Vern! I like to eat the eyes first!

Just thought I'd share my most favorite Easter funny.


Sunday, April 01, 2007

One Year

Yesterday was one year since I began this blogging journey. I've now made over 300 posts and had plenty of visitors.

Inside The New Building

Janice, Jason, and Sam (Obviously I was taking the picture.)
We had a sell-out week... Lots of yummy meats!

Tim & Alex with the usual... Apples, Cider, etc.

Ricky has delicious strawberries, mushrooms, broccoli, onion, some honkin big carrots and, of course, a lovely array of Easter flowers!

It was business as usual inside the new building this weekend.

Damaged Market - Photos from this weekend

This last one is the new addition built the week of the fire. They never missed a week! They say that the fully-restored market should open again sometime this summer.

A Substantial Chunk Of My Life

Here are some photos from days gone by:

Amanda and I

Me with Mr. Jones's Grandson - Alexander

For over 15 years I worked for the neighbor selling meat and vegetables at the Farmer's Market in Pittsburgh. In February of this year, a fire destroyed the interior of the building. The fire was ruled arson. That very week the co-operative pulled themselves together and built an addition about 1/3 of the size of the main building in order to continue serving their purpose in that community. For more news, click here.

Palm Sunday's Message & Reminiscing

Today Pastor Stewart proclaimed that there is never too much Christianity in the world. He reminded us that we can never proclaim the glory of God enough. Hosannah! Glory to God! God is Good! Amen!

Looking through one of my old journals, I find an entry I authored on Friday, May 13, 2005 as I was studying Ephesians 3:14-21:

"Verse 14 speaks of kneeling before God. This sparks a particular memory of my childhood. My Grandfather had "worship" twice per day. Whomever was home participated. We usually sang a Psalm. We had really old Psalm books without music and only sang a couple different tunes for all of them. We read the Bible and often took turns reading around the room. Then we'd sing again and finally everyone would physically get down on their knees and pray. I don't remember all that we prayed for or about, but it seemed to always conclude with the Lord's prayer. Wow, looking back at my grandfather's dedication to worship makes me feel like I'm not worshipping enough. He even asked a dismissal blessing from the dinner table if I remember correctly."

We used to call him "Grampy." He was a kind gentleman who was devoted to God, loved his family and friends and who would give the shirt off his back for anyone in need. He loved his farm and worked hard all his life. He loved children. He and I had a special bond. I remember sitting on his lap, atop of his old tattered work pants, snuggled up against his flannel shirt, holding his hand with the crooked finger which was at least twice the size of mine. He chewed Mailpouch tobacco. Maybe that's why I collect Mailpouch barns... as some long lost connection to my Grampy?

I aspired to be like him in my adult life. For years I wanted nothing more than to work the fields and milk cows... a life similar to his. When I married I felt as if I was dismissing those dreams, but eventually I realized that it was not the profession that would make me like him. It was my love of God, of my friends and family, and how I choose to show it. I still desire to be like my Grampy in so many ways.