Thursday, May 20, 2010


When you look at this picture, you see a sunrise coming up behind 3 big oak trees. You see an old run down ranch house, that might have been a house to someone back in the day. The land is dry, obviously nobody is taking care of it.
When I look at this picture, I see more. I will share with you what I see and feel.
I see that before you even come down to that old ranch house, you drive down a long road after exiting the freeway. I am starting to feel the anticipation of "We are almost there!!" I am in a 10 year olds body. 
One final hill...There It Is!  We are there!  We are there!
See that little ditch that we are about to cross?  That is the ditch I like to swim in.
Over the cattle guard...giggle giggle...that tickles my bottom! :)  HA!  Right beside the cattle guard, thats the cattle truck.  It is pretty old!
See the oak tree in the middle? (It might look like the right oak tree, but there is one more right behind it that you can barely see.)    That is where all the tack and the extra fridge is kept.  Sometimes I like to sneak out to the extra fridge...shhhh!  We drive in and the cars basically circle around the middle oak.  Yeehaw!!  Cousins are here!!  We only have 2 cousins...but...YEEHAW!! :)
Looks like everyone is out past the house.  Just on the backside, is where we will get together.  There is a tire swing back there.   Pretty soon we will all be eating watermelon and having seed spitting contests!
Into the house we go first...we go to the left side of the house (that you see in the picture).  That is the kitchen.  As you enter, you walk passed the old wood stove.   Kind of loud.  Yes...I have a loud family. 
"All Kids OUTSIDE!" , is what we soon hear.  
Gonna take a drive!  Hop in the back of the white truck...going fishin' up at the pond!  
"Duck!!"  Whew almost got swiped by that big oak branch!!  Grandad is driving...I love the feel of the wind as it blows in my face..."Duck again!!"
After fishing, we go back to the house.  Going to go out and see Old Whitey...feed him a carrot or two.  OUCH!  He bit me!  
We are going to head out to the corral for awhile.  Going to take a look at the cows.  See that water trough right beside the corral?  I like to run my hands in that trough.  Nobody cares.  See that cow pie?  Don't really mind if I walk right through it!!  :)  Won't be branding or butchering this time...maybe next time.
Well, looks like lunch is ready soon...better get on back.  Time to shuck the corn.
As always...a great meal!  Watermelon will be out soon!  
The kids are going to play "Annie Annie Oxen Free"...(Not sure if that is the real name...but that is what I remember.)  A few kids on one side of the house, and a few kids on the other side of the house, and we throw a ball back and forth over the house.  Don't remember the rules or how to play...just remember playing!
Woohoo!  Time for WATERMELON!  Everyone goes out behind the house.   We talk.  We laugh.  We yell.  Old friends come.  Family is family.
Kids are silly.  Sometimes we fight.  Adults are having a great time.  Sometimes they argue...but nothing serious.  It's all in good fun.
Time to get going.
Can't wait to come back!! 
Goodbye!  Goodbye!
Circle around the oaks.
Drive over the cattle guard.  (Tickles again...:)
Up that road, and onto the freeway.

I remember. 
That is what I see when I look at that picture.  It is sad to look at...and sad to see what once was, is now gone.  But it gone?  Aren't we the people we have become because of what we once lived?
I didn't grow up in that house.  But when I hear the song by Miranda Lambert..."The House That Built Me"...(This is the first song that plays on my blog when you come here...)...I think of this house.  These memories to me...are the best memories.
I remember.
 In my eyes...the eyes of a child...this was the BEST place to ever be!

(Painting by Buck McCain) for Remembering.  Hope on over the Jenny's place to see who else is playing in Alphe-bet Thursday...

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Wednesday, May 19, 2010

My children can do amazing things...

Definately a PROUD MAMA MOMENT...

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Quickly...make this! NOW!!

First, I cannot take credit for this recipe...most of you know that I follow Pioneer Woman...well, for those of you that don't know, she has another website, called Tasty Kitchen.  (If I knew how, Tasty Kitchen would have been highlighted there, and you could have just clicked on the words and it would have taken you to the link.  BUT...I don't know how...SO...won't be doing that little magic trick!)
Anyways, I came across this recipe by Susan Hawkins.  Don't know who Susan is...but want to give credit where credit is due!
These aren't my pictures either...they came from PW's site too...totally stole them!  They looked so much prettier than mine would have. 
So here it is, you HAVE to make this recipe!  We have been doing field work, and I needed a quick dessert to make for the guys after they had dinner.  Decided to make this, and Lordy Lordy!  Let me tell ya...if I could eat these pictures...I WOULD~! 
If your diabetic...sorry.  Might send your sweet little self into a tail spin...but, maybe just a bite will be ok. 
This is absolutely a MUST have recipe...and I will be keeping this one for any emergency that might arise!

Granny's Chocolate Cobbler

•1 cup All-purpose Flour

•2 teaspoons Baking Powder

•¼ teaspoons Salt

•7 Tablespoons Cocoa Powder, Divided

•1-¼ cup Sugar, Divided

•½ cups Milk

•⅓ cups Melted Butter

•1-½ teaspoon Vanilla Extract

•½ cups Light Brown Sugar, Packed

•1-½ cup Hot Tap Water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
First stir together the flour, baking powder, salt, 3 tablespoons of the cocoa, and 3/4 cup of the white sugar. Reserve the remaining cocoa and sugar.

Stir in the milk, melted butter, and vanilla to the flour mixture. Mix until smooth.

Pour the mixture into an ungreased 8-inch baking dish. I prefer my small oval Corning Ware glass dish.

In a separate small bowl, mix the remaining white sugar (it should be 1/2 cup), the brown sugar, and remaining 4 tablespoons of cocoa. Sprinkle this mixture evenly over the batter.

Pour the hot tap water over all. DO NOT STIR!

Bake for about 40 minutes or until the center is set.

Let stand for a few minutes if you can hold yourself back. Serve with homemade ice cream using the gooey sauce to spoon over all.

OK...really...QUICKLY!  Go make this now!  Everyone will LOVE you FOREVER!!
If you want the link where I found this, and get the real effects of a REAL blog with REAL pictures...Go here: 
And if you want to see what is going on at Alpha-bet Thursday, head on over to Jenny's page at!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Weekend Getaway...

A few weeks ago we were soooo lucky to get away for a few days with NO kids!  We had a ton of FUN!  We went with our friends, Joe and Hallie...we took the ferry, and went to Salt Spring Island.  It was so nice there.  The weather was perfect!
This was a neat little patio we had outside our room...had a fireplace and was so cozy sitting here drinking our coffee first thing in the morning.

View from the room...

First thing Saturday morning, we headed over to the farmers market that they put on.  Lots of neat little trinkets and homemade things.  We ate kale, and nettle...dried.  It was good...different though.  Here was some bread and it smelled soooo yummy!

Now, let me say...this place reminded me of Bisbee, Arizona a bit.  A hippie here, and a hippie there...but this guy...he REALLY reminded me of my Bisbee days!  Come can't argue it, can you?!

He told me he was very famous.  As famous as Michael Buble, and Nellie Furtado.  I asked him "How is that?!"  He said, "Have you ever heard of YouTube?  I have millions of hits on YouTube!"  Really now?!  I think I might head over to YouTube and see how famous this guy is!  I think my Joey's 40,000 hits on his milking a cow video is by far more famous! :)
Anyways, this guy said he had the 8th wonder of the world!  This little wooden contraption...he would spin it through the air and the sun would reflect and give you a kalidascope feeling...Our friend Joe is NOT so sure Hallie should be letting this guy show her his 8th Wonder Of The World!

Ah HA!  Lookie There!  Joey Jacobs has let Mr. YouTube perform his magic on him!!  I think since being home Joe has subscribed to his YouTube page...I'm just sayin'...
Hallie and I enjoying the day...
This was The TreeHouse Restaurant...had a tree trunk growing
right in the middle of the restaurant.
I told my WONDERFUL friends that I wanted to look for seashells.  So, we asked some WONDERFUL local boys, how far it was to SeaShell Beach...thier reply, "Only 15 minutes up that trail."  Ya...right!  That trail took us right up a mountain!  Unlike my Olympian friends...I am NOT in shape to climb a MOUNTAIN!  Who was I kidding?!  They kept climbing that mountain, and I kept begging, "Please, lets go back!  Take me to Sea Shell Beach!!" 
I think it was at this point I started wondering if they were secretly plotting to kill me...I was sweating, panting, begging for a break.  There were cliffs to the right...steep mountain side to the left...I am pretty sure I heard my friends ask Tony if he had a good life insurance policy.  MURDER FOR SURE!  Or maybe they were thinking I was going to have a heart attack right there on that mountain. 

What?!  Is this it?!  I don't see any seashells!!  Look at Hallie, "See Jimi!  It wasn't so bad!!  Look it is BEAUTIFUL!!"  Ya...whatever.  You soak in the beauty while I look for my inhaler.
Ok...maybe it was pretty.  And maybe I was happy I climbed that mountain.  Hey, maybe I will even pose for a picture!
Look!  I really did survive!!  But, it wasn't long after I took this picture that I realized, we climbed UP the mountain, then DOWN to the water...that meant I would have to climb back UP the mountain to get back DOWN to our car!  Some people would call them friends...I am starting to wonder!
Once I got over the shock of the climb...I started to marvel at the beauty around me...look at this cool old house.  The back side was built into the hill.  See the little square just below the peak of the house?  It had the date "1901" on it...I so would love to know the history behind that house!
We did venture over to the other side of the island to look for seashells, (I think my friends and husband got tired of my moaning and complaining about wanting to find seashells...) but we didn't find much.
Just crabs.
One starfish.
One seal...
6 deer.
We are now on our way home...this is the passage out.  Beautiful, isn't it?!
Here is Joe and Hallie after their relaxing weekend away with no kids...
Awww...they LUB each other!!
Tony and I after a long, relaxing weekend away...We LUB each other too, but no kissing pictures for us!  We still need to talk about that life insurance conversation...
It really was a GREAT weekend.  I really don't think any of us were ready to go home.  We laughed, and laughed, and laughed...
You know...everyone needs weekends like that!
Thanks Joe and Hallie for a GREAT weekend!
Thanks Mom and Dad for taking care of our 4 kiddo's so we could do this!
We have planned a repeat...can you watch the kids?! :)