Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Stuff We Find In Our Yard

I know this is kind of morbid, but I thought today being the day before Halloween would be the best day to post this picture.  It's a hawk that we found dead in our yard.  It's a gorgeous bird and they are definitely larger than I ever imagined them being.  This picture was taken probably about seven years ago.

Happy Halloween - ah, ah, ah!
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Monday, October 29, 2012

Tip To Keep Your Toddler Close By While In A Parking Lot

Last week I took my youngest daughter, Abby, in for her 3-year checkup.  I asked the doctor if she had any suggestions for controlling this little strong-willed ball of energy - specifically, how to keep her from running around in the parking lot when my hands were full. 

A few weeks ago, we were at the library.  I had two bags of books that I needed to put in the car before I could put Abby in the car.  I was putting the books in the car where Abby sat, so it wasn't like I was clear on the other side of the car.  I opened the car door and asked Abby to "stay right there; don't move."  I put the first bag of books in the car.  I looked down to check on Abby and she was gone.  She had run around to the back of the car.  This scared me to death and I wasn't sure how to get it across to her that this was really dangerous and that she could really, really get hurt.  How do you get that across to a 3-year-old - a very stubborn 3-year-old? 

Well, her doctor suggested we try this:

The pediatrician suggested to either put a magnet on the car or choose a spot on the car that would be Abby's safe spot - a spot on the car that Abby has to keep her hand on until she is told she can move. 

The gas tank lid is close to Abby's car door, so I thought we'd pick that to be her safe spot.  To my surprise, this has really worked well for us.  Abby thinks it's really neat that she has her own little safe spot. 

Now, I'm not suggesting you ask your toddler to stay at their safe spot while you unload a buggy full of groceries on the opposite side of the car.  But if you're just putting a couple of things in the car, then give this a shot.

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Friday, October 26, 2012

Witch Hat - From Drab To Fab

My girls both wanted to be witches this year for Halloween.  We're on a budget, as always, so I thought it would be cool to buy these cheap witch hats from Walmart, $1.97 a piece, and embellish them a little bit.

First I used a seam ripper to remove that funky green hair.  Then I plugged in my glue gun and got to work.  I measured the base of the hat using the feather boa that I also bought at Walmart (in the fabric/craft section) and then cut it and glued it to the base of the hat.  Then I glued some ribbon around the hat to make it look like it had stripes - which turned out, like, majorly ugly.  I wound up ripping all that off.

I decided to make some bows out of ribbon.  Glued those bows on the hats and then glued on some felt eyeballs (Michael's) in the center of some of the bows.  I also glued on some glow-in-the-dark bats.  You could use whatever you wanted - fake mice, fake bugs, real bugs - you know, whatever you're into.

It probably wasn't the best idea to glue the sort-of heavy bats towards the top of the hat, but I sorta, kinda remedied that by stuffing a plastic bag inside the hat.

I think they turned out pretty cute.  My little witches liked them and that's all that really matters, right? 
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Thursday, October 25, 2012

Recipe To Try - Hamburger Steaks with Brown Gravy

This recipe is South Your Mouth's Hamburger Steak with Brown Gravy.  It is delicious.  I will never, ever, never, never, ever make brown gravy using a packet of powder again.  The hamburger steaks have a great flavor, and with that homemade brown gravy slathered on top, you just can't go wrong.  This is so easy to throw together and soooo good. 
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Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Texas Music Around Fort Worth Weekend of October 26, 2012

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Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Stuff We Find In Our Yard

Can you spot the three birdies on the branch?  Don't they look cute sitting there all snuggled up?
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Thursday, October 18, 2012

Party-Pleasing Appetizers

This weekend we celebrated our daughters' birthdays.  We had a get-together at our house and I made lots of crowd-pleasing appetizers.  Everything turned out pretty dang good if I do say so myself.  Here's what I made:

First up, this yummy Creamy Peanut Butter Fruit Dip from Southern Plate.  One of the party-goers told me it was the best dip he'd ever had in his life.  Now that's some statement, isn't it? 

Also from a reader of  Southern Plate is this Taco Rex dip.  This is always a favorite at our house.

Another favorite at our house are these Mexican Pinwheels from Just A Pinch.  I've been making these for years and everybody always looks forward to eating them when we have get-togethers.  Instead of the red pickled jalapenos (which are sometimes hard to find) I used green pickled jalapenos - gave the pinwheels a little extra kick.

I also made these Bacon Cheeseburger Puffs from Plain Chicken.  They turned out good too.  They weren't quite as puffy as the ones pictured on Plain Chicken, but they still tasted good.  I also made some ranch dressing to dip them in.

Also from Plain Chicken, I made Cheddar Bacon Ranch Pulls.  This turned out really good too.  It was kind of hard to eat, so I just wound up cutting the bread up into pieces after it was cooked.  It didn't look very pretty after I did that, but dangit it was good!

I also made Paula Deen's Garlic Cheese Biscuits.  These are, like, my favorites y'all.  They even make you start talking like Paula, y'all.  I mean, really, y'all. Y'all, I'm serious, y'all.  I could be the next Deen Team Blogger, don't y'all think?  These are delicious and I could eat about five pounds of them at any given time.

I also made this Strawberry Champagne Punch from Allrecipes.com.  I used two bottles of champagne and one 2-liter bottle of ginger ale.  I also used one bag of frozen strawberries and one bag of mixed berries.  I realize this is not really an appetizer, but I did make it for this party because what person doesn't need an adult beverage while at a child's birthday party?  I mean, come on!!

And last but certainly not least, the star of the show:  The Country Cook's Crock Pot Party Meatballs.  These were by far the easiest appetizers I made and they were, if you ask me, the best.  Nobody can hold a candle to these balls - they were awesome!

And there you have it - pictures and links to all the appetizers we had at my girls' birthday party this past weekend.  I hope you enjoyed it and I hope you find all the links useful.  If you get a chance, leave me a comment and let me know what you think.  Love to hear from y'all!

Linking up with these great parties:


Miz Helen’s Country Cottage
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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Texas Music In & Around Fort Worth Weekend of October 19, 2012

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Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Stuff We Find In Our Yard

This was found this past weekend in the creek.  Apparently it's the lower jaw of a snapping turtle.  I'd hate to have been on the business end of that one tooth.  That would have been some Live Action right there, Turtle Man.
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Wednesday, October 10, 2012

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