Wednesday, November 23, 2011


We are going to spend Thanksgiving Day with Eileen and Shaun.  The last time we got to spend any time with them was the beginning of September.  Between my job and Eileen's two jobs and Shaun's job and his classes, our days off never once aligned up.  Woohooo for spending time with them.  Eileen told me last night she thinks she is forgettting something big for dinner... I told her that I didnt care if we were eating tomato soup for Turkey day dinner... it wouldnt matter as long as we could all be together.

Today, I work at Walmart from 12:30 to 8:30pm... then go home and sleep.  We head to Eileen's early tomorrow, then we will come home and I will go to bed so I can be rested for my Midnight to 9 am shift.  It is going to be very interesting. 

We are in the midst of our second snow storm of the winter... sure we have had a few mornings where we woke up to a thin layer of the white stuff on the ground but this is the second storm where snow plows were required.  Its soon to be followed with freezing rain and nasty guck like that.  The poor husband has been drafted into driving me to work lol... ostensibly to purchase the last few items we need for tomorrow so that I can come straight home from work as opposed to shopping after work... but its really so that I dont have to drive in this stuff.  I havent gotten my "winter storm legs" yet.

The baby blanket for Sarah's little boy is coming along.  I work at it here and there.   Took the picture with my cell phone... will try to get a better one once i find my camera.  =)  Its a little misleading in this picture.  The yarn is a variegated yarn with white, pale blue, darker blue, and purple in it.  Its very soft to the touch, Jericho is going to love it (I hope).  I can't wait to get it finished. 

Heh... this has been rather disjointed update, but at least its posted lol...

Hope you have a wonderful Turkey day surrounded by loved ones.  


Thursday, November 10, 2011

A Foggy Morning

Its foggy here this morning, and my mind feels all foggy as well.  I didnt sleep well last night, kept waking up thinking of things that were worrying me or because I thought I heard something, and on top of that my allergies are acting up.  I tried to go back to bed, but laying there, attempting to fall asleep has done nothing but give me a headache lol... and yes i realize i am being rather whiney.

The husband went to visit his family last Saturday and  told me he had a long talk with his younger sister.  They have decided to not exchange gifts with everyone this year but to in fact only buy gifts for the kids.  While this is something I am heartily in favor of (my sister and I have been exchanging Christmas ornaments for many many years now instead of gifts and only buying for the children) it makes me a bit sad.  I don't know why, it just does. Perhaps its more that I feel like i have lost touch with his family with my job.  I work every weekend and that is typically when we would see them.  Haven't talked to any of them in a long time and I miss them. Guess I need to work on fixing that.

This morning Maddy woke us up with the news that the dryer isnt working... so we need to call the landlords (in florida) and get it looked at.  We live out in the middle of no where... I have no clue where the nearest laundromat is.  Sheesh...

I need the sun to come out and burn this fog away...

Monday, November 7, 2011

... And it's November!

Time sure flies when you are having fun!  *grins*

I have been getting between 32 and 34 hours a week at work and I am really getting into the swing of the job.  One of the CSMs told me last night that everyone has nothing but nice things to say about me... so that was good to hear.  I will have my 3 month performance review the first week of December and also my discount card.  That will be nice!!  Things have been getting busier and crazier at work as the holidays approach.  The weekend before Halloween everything was orange and black... costumes and scary themed food and candy.  I worked Halloween night and it was really dead.  I had a day off and when I came in next there were Christmas decorations up, Christmas trees in the entrys and Christmas music playing.  I felt a bit disoriented lol.

My niece, who got married in August, is pregnant.  Well technically, she was pregnant at the wedding, but it was early on yet and very few people knew.  She now has a baby belly... although its a little one and she finds out on Wednesday what the gender of the baby is.  I keep reminding her that not all babies want to share that info right off... but she is confident her child will behave and show the appropriate bits hehe.  Boy does she have a lot to learn about being a parent lmao... i cant wait to see it all unfold.  I hope her child is as much a joy and handful as Miss Sarah was for her parents.  I am trying to figure out what to make for this little one.  My sister is making the traditional (well in our family) cross-stitch blanket.  My eldest has stated she is making a quilt, so either i make some clothes for the child or knit something.  I may just go ahead and make a quilt too... a baby cant have too many quilts, but we will see.  I found a very cute pattern for a knit hat... it resembles a small berry, pattern can be found on Ravelry here.  Also found a pattern for a little knit blanket with a waffle pattern that looks adorable.  I think I will wait till we know on Wednesday (or dont know for that matter) before i finalize my plans. 

Paul and I had a long talk yesterday... he told me he fully intends to take the new job in Jan.  Its going to be very hard for the family to adjust but its going to be a good thing.  The pay is wonderful for this area, we will have medical insurance for the first time in a very long time... 401k, etc... and the town this business is in has a wonderful highschool.  Its actually a private boarding school but families that live in the town get to send their high school kids there.  Maddy will have the opportunity to get a fantastic education which will only benefit her in the future... and its half way between my sisters town and the town my eldest daughter lives in.  I just found out today that the library there is a Carnegie library.  That's exciting!  They also have an Egg festival in July... a week long festival of egg stuff.  >.>  hehe.  It will be nice to be part of a town again.

I guess thats it for now... i will try to post pictures of the projects I am thinking about doing for the baby.


Friday, October 28, 2011

Whoa... It's October already?

Hah... been some time since I posted, life has been a bit crazy.

Training went well, had about 3 days with my sponsor before I was set free.  I made sure that the CSMs up front knew I was a bit nervous being alone, so for the rest of my first week and all of my second, I was put at a register near a more experienced cashier.  It went very well.  I have been getting an average of 32-34 hours a week and they have mostly been afternoon into late evening shifts.

About 2 - 3 weeks after I started at Walmart, the husband went into work and left unemployed.  He was laid off with a bunch of his other co-workers.  They are all considered displaced workers as their jobs went to a company in Canada. As such he has additional unemployment benefits such as training etc.  Its been such an odd transition... He was the breadwinner and i the stay at home parent... and now its completely reversed.  He has a good job prospect about an hour north of us but that position doesn't start till Jan 3.  In the meantime he is enrolled in a program to help Maine workers start up businesses etc.  When he was laid off the last time (2008) he was in this program then as well. We are both hoping it will take off this time, he has a lot of great ideas.  We are just taking things a day at a time at this point, its all you can really do in these situations. 

I need to start getting my Christmas projects done, I know what I am making for a few people, need to figure out the rest of it soon.

I will try to remember to post every so often ... especially when the holiday projects start flowing.


Sunday, September 18, 2011


Well lots of stuff has been happening around the old homestead.

I finished up my "orientation" to my job and moved on to the actual cashiering part.  Oh my gosh there is so much to remember, so many steps to making the process flow smoothly.  Codes to remember for fruits and veggies, procedures to follow for dealing with food stamps and wic, processes to go through for filling and selling phone cards, checks are used differently now... i was so surprised.  Anyways I have been on the registers for 4 days now, 2 days by myself.  I am still having to ask for help from the nearby cashiers but its happening less and less.  Had my first unhappy customer today and I just gritted my teeth, smiled and wished her a "pleasant day" all the while wishing her to the deepest parts of Hades.  One wicked weird thing happened... im still a bit in shock over it.  When my family moved here to Maine back in 1975 or 1976, the first girl I met was named Wanda.  We became very good friends during Junior and Senior High.  We lost touch after I went to college, I invited her and her mom to my wedding but they were unable to attend.  Over the years I have attempted to find her.  I even joined that classmates site just to see if she was registered there, as well as the Facebook group for our class.  I haven't been able to find her in any phone book or by asking ppl who live in our old hometown.  Today I was working the register and a couple came up.  I check them through when the woman said Regina?  I looked at her and smiled, lots of ppl say the cashiers name so I didn't think anything of it.  She looked at me and said " Do you remember me?" I looked again and saw my best friend from when we were children.  "Wanda?" I said... I was so surprised.  Come to find out she lives not 15 mins from me.  Unfortunately she doesn't use Facebook and I didn't catch her married name.  Hopefully she will come to the store again.  How amazing is life at times.

Another thing that happened this week was an unfortunate run in with a case of water... in trying to help a customer I hurt my back and its had an impact on the week for sure.

And the last huge thing that happened was that my husband was laid off on Wednesday.  All the management team was notified that there would be another round of lay offs in September.  He has spent the last two weeks helping to choose who would stay and who would go among the hourly employees.  I would see him come home all tired and just discouraged.  He hated helping to make those decisions but it had to be done.  On Tuesday some important customers came in and he dressed up for his meetings with them, but when I asked him about it that night, he said he hadn't gotten to meet with them at all.  Then bright and early the next day he was informed that they had to cut several people from management and he was unfortunately one of the ones to have to go.  *sigh* I am just flabbergasted at this... he had been told that his job was safe... he has taken not only a pay cut to help keep the company up and running but never got his initial raise that was promised to him in his employment contract from 3 years ago.  Because his job is being lost to Canada, he and the other employees are considered displaced employees and they have additional benefits under state or federal guidelines... but that doesn't help right now.  I am really discouraged and just plain tired.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

When you come to the end of your rope, 
tie a knot and hang on.  
~Franklin D. Roosevelt

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

New Job!!

I started my new job today.  I 'm training to be a Walmart cashier. When we were introducing ourselves to other employees they would ask the group of us what positions we were going to be in.  They would nod and nod when someone said backend... assembler... but when the other woman and I said Cashier (or in her case Customer service desk) they would almost cheer.  One of them looked at me sadly and said... it will be ok.  Im totally not sure how to take that.  At one point I heard two people talking about how they were wicked short on cashiers... that they needed to hire 6 new ones and then some left.  I am a bit nervous but I know it will be ok. I am definitely not going into this blind... I had a choice between being a cashier and working the jewelry counter... and I think i got the better end of the deal.  *smiles* I have worked a register at a fast food restaurant, a bookstore, a clothing store and a department store... sure payment methods may have changed a bit over time but customers haven't.  You will always get the happy ones, the stressed ones... the angry ones and its important to take each one individually.  Dont let one unhappy customer ruin your whole day and make it a priority to send each customer off with a smile if you can.  Its like a game I play... can i make that person smile before they walk out the door.    

Anyways... this week is all about learning store policies, getting to know where things are and training via the computer.  Then for the two weeks following that, I will be training with my sponsor, that is a person who does the job I am training for and who will teach me what they know.  After that I will start settling into my schedule (while I am with my sponsor I will be working their shifts with them).

I am tired tonight...but its a good tired.  =D

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Thankful thursday on Saturday

Its been a crazy week in the Smart household.  =)

On Sunday Irene hit and we lost power until Tuesday.  It is the longest we have been without power here in this house and for that we are very fortunate.  There are still people who are waiting to have their service restored.  Living out in the country means we are on a well... and the electricity powers the pump that brings water into the house.  A situation that many many people are familiar with, but it was eye opening for me when we moved here 2+ years ago.  I will never forget, shortly after we moved here we were pulling into the driveway and our landlord was by the barn and said in a very matter of fact way... "we have been without power for 4 hours or so now.  If you need water for the commode you can get it at the lake" and he pointed down the road.  I had no clue what he was talking about until we got inside the house and realized without electricity we had no water... and no ability to flush the toilet.   I think it hit me wicked hard at that moment how very different our lives were going to be in this new home.  Hahaha.  Since that time we have had bats in the house, a snake that likes to come visit the sun room.  Beavers swimming feet from us at the lake... deer behind the house, stopping and waiting for turkeys and all their babies to cross the road lol.  Very different from living in perhaps Maines second largest city, coffee shoppes at every corner... a library with 3 branches and a grocery store within 5 mins.  Anyway... we got our power back Tuesday afternoon and we were so very happy.

Maddy started high school the next day.  She is now a freshman... its so hard to comprehend... my baby is in high school.  It definitely didn't hit me as hard when the eldest was a freshman.  Wednesday the school was open to only Freshmen and Seniors... the upper class-men were there to help the younger students acclimate.  Then Thursday and Friday all the students were there and Maddy is loving it so far.  She adores her English teacher, the woman has a System of a Down poster on the wall that Maddy thinks is wicked cool.  They are reading the Odyssey next and when Maddy raised her hand and asked... "What if you have already read it"  The teacher was very excited, even more so when Maddy shared at the end of class when they were doing a "lets get to know each other" exercise that she loved Shakespeare.  My daughter is going to love her English class.  They did an experiment in her earth systems class already and she was so excited about that... and very disappointed that some of the kids in another class were being idiots as she put it.  When handed a globe and asked to pick out a country and give a fact Maddy said " This is Australia... here (she pointed) is the great barrier reef and blah blah blah something about sharks." ( Maddy loves sharks and has since she was maybe 7 years old)  Another student pointed to Canada and said " this is Canada... Justin Bieber comes from there." and another said " this is Florida, its hot there."  She is already being driven insane and we got a lecture in the car  about idiot students.  *sigh*

Then on Thursday I went in for an interview for a job, but after waiting almost an hour they asked if they could reschedule it due to the computers being down.  That evening the husband had a phone interview with a new company that does things just up his alley.  The interview was over an hour long and afterwards I could see how very excited he was about the possibilities.  Its a company here in Maine that does some similar things to his current company, but they will be able to use his test engineering background.  The problem is that this company is almost an hour from the house and we are locked in to this house for another year or so.  Maddy has just started  high school... I dont want to rip her out of it... but on the other hand the husband seems so very intrigued by this new company... and the current company is getting ready to go through another set of layoffs.  His job is safe for the current time but during the last round of layoffs another manager that had been there longer then Paul got demoted with a paycut in order to keep her job.  We have already been through a layoff (before we moved to this area) and it took him 6 months to find this position.  If the current job hadnt shown up we would have had to move out of state which I wouldnt have minded but would have torn him up.  =(  Next step is a visit to the facility including meetings with HR, owners, and other engineers.   I just want him to have a job where he is challenged and where he absolutely enjoys his work.  I would also like to have health insurance again... its been sometime since we had that.  This new job has a fantastic benefits package which would be lovely.

Friday I had my interview (and boy was that nerve wracking) and they offered me a job as cashier, but only if I passed the pre-job screening and a background check.  Later on in the afternoon they called (which I missed because I didn't have my phone with me) and said everything looked good and I needed to call and set up a time for orientation. 

This weekend the kids (Eileen and Shaun) want to come visit us on Sunday, we also need to get down to visit Paul's parents, borrow the truck from them (until we can get another vehicle) and the landlords want to do their yearly walk through and get a list of things that need to be worked on.  Busy busy busy.

So... back to the thankful thing...

I am thankful for..

~ opportunities that are coming our way.
~ cool english teachers who inspire my 14 year old.
~the fact that my daughter will never conform to fit other kids ... but in fact will continue to march to the beat of her own drum.
~ the lake at the end of the path that allowed me to get water each day we were without power so we could flush the commode ... hahaha.
~backgammon =)


Thursday, August 25, 2011

Thankful Thursday

Today I am thankful for...


... and of course now this is running through my head.

Wishing you a wonderful day...


(image of Portland Headlight from google images)

Sunday, August 21, 2011


The wedding was beautiful, the weather was lovely and a wonderful time was had by all.

Friday, August 19, 2011

A family affair

We are going to a wedding tomorrow. My niece Sarah is marrying the love of her life, Zach, in a small simple ceremony at his parents house. He will be going off to boot-camp at the end of the month, so at the last minute the two decided to get married before he goes.

After the marriage ceremony we will be having some yummy food and a wedding cake his mom is making. I am bringing a large tossed green salad (with three choices for salad dressing) and a couple different types of cookies I make that Sarah likes. No-bake cookies and peanut butter blossoms. Since my sister "borrowed" my copy of the family cookbook I am going to use the Hershey's recipe for the peanut butter cookies.

No-Bake Cookies

2 cups sugar
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp cocoa
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
3 cups oatmeal (quick oats)

In medium saucepan, combine first 5 ingredients and bring to boil over medium heat and then let boil for 2 minutes, stirring. Remove from heat, add in peanut butter and oatmeal. Drop on waxed paper. Let stand, turn and let dry completely. Store in refrigerator or place in ziploc bag.

Peanut Butter Blossoms (adapted from the Hershey's website)

48 Hershey's kisses
1/2 cup shortening
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
1 egg
2 tbsps milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
granulated sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Remove wrappers from chocolates.

Beat shortening and peanut butter in large bowl till well blended. Add in the 1/3 cup granulated sugar and brown sugars, beat until fluffy. Add egg, milk and vanilla, beat well. Sift together (or stir with fork in glass bowl for those of us without sifters) flour, baking soda and salt; gradually beat into peanut butter mixture.

Shape dough into 1 inch balls. Roll in granulated sugar; place on ungreased cookie sheet.

Bake 8 - 10 minutes or until lightly browned. Immediately press a chocolate into center of each cookie, cookie will crack around the edges. Remove from cookie sheet to wire rack. Cool completely. Makes about 4 dozen cookies.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Thankful Thursday

Today I am thankful for:

~dandelions in a jar

What are you thankful for today?

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Home at last..

Its now Wednesday and I think I am finally recovered from the camping trip. We had a wonderful, splendiforus, awesome time. The weather was beautiful, when the rain hit it was the middle of the night while we were all snug in our sleeping bags... and then it drizzled a teensy bit the day we left but all that did was stop us from dragging our feet and we managed to leave the camp grounds when we planned instead of being lulled into staying just a bit longer.

For food we had the following: Saturday we had grilled hamburgers and chips, cut up veggies followed by smores and margaritas for the adults. Sunday we had pancakes and turkey bacon for breakfast, sandwiches, chips and veggies for lunch, grilled chicken, corn on the cob, rolls and butter for dinner followed by more smores and margaritas. Monday morning we had cold cereal and leftovers for breakfast and then we packed up and left.

We swam, played cards, used a paddle boat, fished, played ladder ball, read books, wrote in journals and reconnected. It was very relaxing.

We did have a few injuries and mishaps... my niece fell on a path and got a scrape.. my nephew burned his hand on a metal fork while trying to roast an apple over the campfire, my brother in law cut himself while setting up the tent and my crew got sunburns on Sunday because we were silly and didn't wear sunscreen when we went to the lake. Sunday night when it rained I found a leak in our tent in the middle of the night. I rolled over and landed in a puddle of water on my air mattress... I was too tired to do anything but move over a bit and fall back to sleep. We will definitely have to either see if we can rain proof the tent more or better yet take the sucker back to Beans because the two times we have used it... it has leaked. But... all in all we survived, and the good times far outweighed the bad.

In regards to the promised photos... I think I took maybe 2 pictures the entire weekend, we were all having too much fun to stop and find the cameras... least that was the case with me. I will have to see if my eldest took any photos I can share.

Anyways... I had a blast and can't wait till we go again. I'm definitely not going to wait another 9-10 years to camp again.


Friday, August 12, 2011

We are going camping...

Woohoo...This weekend we are going camping. I can't wait, its been a long time. You would think, living in the great state of Maine that we would take each and every opportunity to get outside but really I'm an indoors kinda gal. I can't stand bugs, don't like being cold or wet, and i prefer my food on clean plates and eaten in front of a lovely TV program. So... what about camping appeals to me? All those things I just listed would mean camping wasn't for me you would think. But... camping for me is all about spending time sitting in front of a campfire with s'mores in hand. Getting up early before the birds are awake and breathing in the chilly air and just being thankful for such an opportunity. Whittling away at a stick for no other purpose then to make it smaller... playing cards with friends and family with no object except to talk to them.. who cares who wins or loses as long as we are doing it together.

I have been kind of lonely since we moved a few years ago. Its very different then how life used to be for us. Everyday I would see my neighbors and it wasnt uncommon for the talks in the driveways to lead to talks over coffee or tea in someones house. I couldn't go to the library or the store without bumping into someone i knew. Here though, our nearest neighbor is over a mile away and people seem to keep to themselves a lot... we don't shop in a neighborhood grocery store but in a large store in the state capital( we live way out in the country), and unfortunately most of my college classes this semester are going to be online ones. Now that I have most of my general education classes done for my degree, the rest of them are online. I could swap to a different degree program which would require more on campus classes, and I am actually contemplating that for a few reasons. I really enjoy going to class and having that interaction with the other students and the professor. I am also looking into finding a job which will get me out of the house, bringing in a bit of cash and hopefully some form of health insurance.

Anyway...That's what this camping trip is all about. We are going with Pauls sister and her family. So there will be 4 adults, 2 college students, a 14 year old, a 10 yr old and an 8 year old. We are going to spend the weekend just reconnecting, eating good food, swimming, laughing, and playing silly games. The weather is starting to look like its going to cooperate, we still have all our old gear and only need to replace a few things and I just need to finish getting us packed up.

I will try to take some pictures while we are away... I wont promise to post them though if they turn out horrid. hehe... all that said... I can't wait.


ps... these are not my photos.. I snagged them from google images. hopefully i have will have some to share on Monday.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Thankful Thursdays

I have noticed that my posts have fallen off just a wee bit lately, and while I do subscribe to the whole "blogging without obligation" premise... I also recognize that if i don't post every so often, it kind of defeats the purpose of having a blog. Its supposed to be a place I explore myself...which let's face it... is kinda hard to do if i don't post at all. *grins*

Soo.... Welcome to my first Thankful Thursday post. Lets get the biggies out of the way first.

I am thankful for my husband, who is my best friend. <3 We have known each other for 24 years... married for almost 23 of them. We met when we were both in my best friends wedding, where I was the maid of honor and he was the best man. The date was August 12th and I remember thinking he was very quiet, and that he was way too tall. One year and 2 weeks later we were married and have been going strong ever since.

I am also very thankful for my wonderful girls, who let me see the world through their eyes. I am so, so very thankful that we were blessed with them. Sometimes I wonder how these intelligent strong young women came from the two of us.

I am thankful for us... we have had some real ups and downs as a family and somehow have weathered them all. Sure we have gotten a bit dinged up... but we are still strong and we have each other.

Paul and Eileen.

Paul and Maddy

Its not the best picture of the husband and i but a wonderful one of the girls... (We were at my father-in-laws retirement dinner). From left to right its the husband, me, Eileen and Maddy.

I am very very thankful for my family.


Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Mosaic Meme.

Its a Mosaic Meme... I originally found the instructions for this at Wisdom of the Moon

1. Regina Bike Path, 2. Pepperoni Mushroom (home made), 3. Brunswick, 4. Teal-Purple Cuff Links, 5. Cowboys & Aliens Daniel Craig Harrison Ford, 6. Whiskey Sour, 7. Ireland for Sale..., 8. Mud Pie, 9. Writer's Weapon, 10. Family., 11. The Seeker, 12. Untitled

The instructions to create the mosaic are:

Type your answers to each of the questions below into Flickr Search .
Pick an image.
Copy and paste each of the URLs into the mosaic maker.

What is your first name?
What is your favorite food?
What high school did you go to?
What is your favorite color?
Who is your celebrity crush?
Favorite drink?
Dream vacation?
Favorite dessert?
What do you want to be when you grow up?
What do you love most in life?
One word to describe you.
Your Flickr name.

Baked Ziti to die for...

1 pound ziti
1 pound ground beef
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp black pepper
Garlic powder to taste
½ cup chopped green pepper
½ cup chopped onion
Large jar pasta sauce
¾ package cream cheese
1 cup sour cream
1 cup ricotta cheese
Mixture of shredded ched. + moz.
1-2 tbsps butter
Parmesan cheese

Cook pasta as directed on package. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a medium pan sauté the onion and green pepper till translucent. Remove from pan. Add ground beef with seasonings to pan and cook till done. Drain, add onions and green peppers back into pan, add pasta sauce. Simmer for 20 minutes.

In small bowl combine sour cream, cream cheese and ricotta, set aside.

Mix drained noodles with butter and Parmesan cheese. Coat a 9x13” inch pan with pam. Place prepared noodles in pan, spread cheese mixture on top of noodles and cover with meat mixture. Sprinkle with cheddar/mozz cheese.

Cover and bake for 25 minutes until bubbly. Uncover and bake for 5 more minutes till cheese is bubbly.

Also very yummy with no meat or veggies… just noodles sauce and cheese mixture.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Irma Bombeck


by Irma Bombeck

...I would have talked less and listened more.

...I would have invited friends over to dinner even if the carpet was stained and the sofa faded.

...I would have eaten the popcorn in the "good" living room and worried much less about the dirt when someone wanted to light a fire in the fireplace.

...I would have taken the time to listen to my grandfather rambling about his youth.

...I would never have insisted the car windows be rolled up on a summer day because my hair had just been teased and sprayed.

...I would have burned the pink candle sculped like a rose before it melted in storage.

...I would have sat on the lawn with my children and not worried about grass stains.

...I would have cried and laughed less while watching television, and more while watching life.

...I would have gone to bed when I was sick, instead of pretending the earth would go into a holding pattern if I weren't there for the day.

...I would never have bought anything just because it was practical, wouldn't show soil or was guaranteed to last a lifetime.

...Instead of wishing away nine months of pregnancy, I'd have cherished every moment, realising that the wonderment growing inside me was the only chance in life to assist God in a miracle.

...When my kids kissed me impetuously, I would never have said, "Later. Now go get washed up for dinner.

...There would have been more "I love you's" and more "I'm sorry's". . . but mostly, given another shot at life, I would seize every minute . . . look at it and really see it . . . and never give it back.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Iced Tea

I have been on quite the ice tea kick lately. Over the years I have made ice tea in lots of different ways. I remember as a kid using a huge glass jar with a lid, putting cold water in it and tea bags and setting it out in the sun. Sun tea... Yum!!! I have also been known to make a cup of tea and then throw lots of ice in it to get it cold. Sure it got cold but it also got watery... blech! So I have had at times... very strong ice tea... weak ice tea and fake ice tea. LOL

Finally though, I found a way to make my ice tea consistent and this is what I do...

Put 8 cups of filtered water into a pan on the stove-top. Bring to a simmer. Remove from heat and toss in 6 tea bags. I then let this steep for 4 minutes, not 3... and not 5 but exactly 4 minutes. =P Remove the teabags from the pan and put a lid on it. I let this cool until its able to be poured into my ice tea pitcher.

I usually like to sweeten my own tea glass by glass ... but the husband prefers it pre-sweetened. I have found that a scant 1/3 cup of sugar mixed in at this stage is just right for him. Gives it a bit of sweetness but not too sweet. If I make tea during the week and know he wont be partaking, then I don't bother to sweeten it and add my sweetener when I pour a glass. Another thing I have done before is make up a simple syrup and store it in the fridge. He could use this to sweeten his ice tea (if he doesn't use it for something else that is lol)

The possibilities are endless... how about a raspberry/lemon iced tea... Blueberry iced tea... or even a lovely mint iced tea. Sounds delicious to me!!!

What about you... do you have a favorite way to make iced tea?


My loves...

Miss M. and Leen. My girls!