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Friday, November 29, 2019

Life: Friday Ramblings



I had a blast at...
...my daughter's Thanksgiving party at school.
I opted for Thanksgiving themed BINGO and was shocked at how much the kiddies loved it.
Several children screamed out that this was their favorite game ever.
Brownie points for this mama for getting  s o m e t h i n g  finally right!
I printed out BINGO boards and calling cards from the computer.
Next I covered them in page protectors and used crazy glue to secure them in place.
The page protectors worked out great for the kiddies to use dry erase markers to mark and erase their boards.
If you're looking for a fun class party idea with first graders, this was a definite win!

I'm really, REALLY proud of...
...my baby girl, Mushy Face for winning the Manner's Matter award for the first grade.
In a world full of bullies and negativity, my daughter's a shining star for remaining polite!
...and, yes, she absolutely does take after me...

We are completely loving...
...our Disney+ subscription!  The kids haven't turned it off yet.
We're loving the classics, movies we didn't know were Disney, Marvel flicks, and much more.
While I don't plan on watching The Mandalorian, I'm pumped for other shows that are in the works.
This subscription has led to many family movie nights, which is one of our favorite activities!

I'm super annoyed with...
...my dishwasher for breaking and causing a flood in my kitchen.
Good thing that my husband is not only handsome, but really handy.
After troubleshooting for about an hour, he determined the problem was with the appliance.
He ran out, bought an inexpensive replacement, and installed it himself.
I was grateful for his quick fix because Thanksgiving is not the time to start hand washing dishes.

My heart is full because...
...I helped my cousin set up a surprise visit from NC to spend the holiday with us.
I'm really excited to spend the week with them and have some one on one girl talk!!
You know, the talk with large glasses of wine and lots of laughs while making zero sense..

I'm giggling as I type because...
...I'm listening to Winnie the Pooh in the background.
Christopher Robin left a note ending in "I'll be back soon."
Owl then concocts a story that an evil creature called Backson captured their friend.
What's a Backson known for?  Ripping all of the pages out of library books!

My heart smiles everytime...
...my son calls me "mommy" in his squeaky, baby voice.
His vocabulary has grown greatly, but his first word was still Mama, just saying!
...then Thor.  See, the boy's already got his priorities straight...

What are your Friday Ramblings?
Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Life: Happy Thanksgiving!


Happy Thanksgiving Eve to all of you!

In honor of the holiday, here's my little Mushy Face reciting her favorite Thanksgiving poem.
May your day be filled with family, celebration, love, fun, and lots of delicious foods.
...and if you're a turkey, I hope you run as fast as you can, before you're roasted in a pan...


How will you be celebrating Thanksgiving?
Monday, November 25, 2019

List: Ten things I'm thankful for.


This upcoming Thursday is my favorite holiday of the year.
It's also my holiday to host which makes it something I look forward to even more!
I love that this holiday is filled with family, traditions, and delicious f o o d.
I love that the pressure of presents and expensive gifts aren't associated with the holiday.
I love the smell of the turkey baking in the oven and the look of my fine china on the table.
I love watching the parade and seeing the smile on my babies' faces when Santa ends it.
I love the prep work and spending time with my family in the kitchen getting each dish prepared.
I also love that it's the precursor to the holiday season.
Alright, so I love everything about it.  Whatever.

I know it's a bit early, but I'm feeling festive.
In honor of the season of thanks, here are ten things that I'm most thankful for.

Ten things that I'm most thankful for.

1.  I'm thankful for my family.
This includes my handsome hubby, sassy little girl, and chubby baby boy.
This also includes my extended family, in laws, and best friends.
It may be cliche, but it's oh so true - You all fulfill me and give my life real meaning!

2.  I'm thankful for Thor.
While our little chiweenie likes to eat Mushy's panties and sometimes tinkle on the floor, he's a good dog.
I trust him fully, even with my son when he was the tiniest of a newborn.
Thank you for being the kindest, most mild mannered puppy in our family!
Did you all think that I was referring to the superhero?  It is who he's named for.  Just sayin...

3.  I'm thankful for moving into this home and neighborhood.
When we sold our home and moved to a new neighborhood, we were hesitant.
We couldn't have gotten any luckier with our fabulous house in a just as fabulous area!
I'm thankful for the good schools, friendly neighbors, safe streets, and small town feel of our neighborhood.

4.  I'm thankful for our health.
We are beyond fortunate to say that we are all healthy and thriving.
I pray for my family's health and safety every night and am most thankful for this blessing.

5.  I'm thankful for my talented doctor.
This time last year I was in a very depressed state despite all of my blessings.
A mix of postpartum, the stress of selling my house, and a severe case of diastis recti had me real low.
I'm thankful to my highly referred doctor for fixing the diastis recti and a successful recovery.
I'm also thankful to my husband that made little complaint about the money spent on the procedure.

6.  I'm thankful for coffee.
I'm thankful for my coffee pot, coffee cups, coffee scoop, and Folgers.
Without all of these things, every day would become groggy, nonproductive, and gloomy.

7.  I'm thankful for our steady income.
There are days that I dislike my job and days that I completely despise my husband's.
His new job has me waking up at 4 am everyday to drop off both kids.  I loathe entirely!
Even with all this, I'm thankful for our income that allows us to live a comfortable life.
Without the freedom of my job, I wouldn't be able to be so active in my children's lives.
Without the increase in pay with my hubby's new job, we'd be struggling month to month.

8.  I'm thankful for being born in the US.
After meeting my mother in law and learning of life in communism, I appreciate the US even more.
I'm thankful for the freedoms and opportunities we are given in the United States.
The saddest part was learning how they are brainwashed to believe complete falsities!

9.  I'm thankful for my nail salon.
My nails are thin, weak, and resemble a sheet of paper.
I'm thankful for my nail salon and Bella, my go to person, for helping me look fabulous!
I not only walk out looking great, but they magically make it last for weeks and weeks.

10.  I'm thankful for getting back to R&W.
Without R&W, my life was missing a creative outlet.  I enjoy writing, sharing, and interacting with all of you.
Every comment puts a smile on my face and every post has me feeling accomplished.
There are even a few of you that I'm fortunate enough to consider friends.
Thank you to R&W for allowing my creative juices to flow and thank you to all of you for the friendship!
Just a FYI - I talk about all of you to family and friends like I know you IRL.  It's not creepy...

What are you thankful for this year?
Friday, November 22, 2019

Life: Friday Ramblings


Image result for happy friday

I've been left drained and exhausted from...
...the amount of travel that I've been required to do this month at work.
I've spent several nights away from home in far away hotels and hated every single one.
When I'm not away for the night, I wake up at 3AM for the day trip in and out of state.
Either way, I'm left exhausted.  I'll take the one that let's me snuggle with my babies at night.

I'm weighing the pros and cons for...
...a new job opportunity.  My old manager has offered me a position under him.
I absolutely loved working for him, but this job would be a big demotion in title and freedom.
While I'm OK with demoting myself in title, I'm not sure if I could ever go back to an 8 to 5.
My schedule requires lots of travel, but I make my schedule mostly which allows me to be present for my kids.

I find myself nostalgic and little anxious thinking about...
...how quick everything in our life is passing us by!
My babies are growing up, my grandparents are aging, and the holidays are here.
I want to be excited for the holidays, not have them come and go.  Father Time, slow down!

I'm slightly humored yet annoyed at...
...Madre's comment to me the other day regarding Jared Padalecki's arrest.
She called to tell me of the arrest and that she realized I'm attracted to psychopaths.
My first love was Aaron Carter, an apparent psychopath.
Then I was crushing on Aaron Hernandez, a convicted psychopath.
Next up was my longtime boyfriend that got me blogging, LLS, a self proclaimed psychopath.
Lastly is Jared Padalecki, who my mother has now claimed a psychopath.

I'm still laughing at...
...an exchange amongst my coworkers and I the other day.
"Jax, there are butt warmers on the back seat if you want to put them on."
A few minutes past after I turned the butt warmer on, and I felt the need to make a comment.
"Wow, it's really hot in here!"
"Then turn off the butt warmers..."
"I want my butt to be hot, but the rest of my body to be cold."
"Jax, you just summed up the life of every married man in one sentence."
...I still think I had a reasonable request...

I'm really excited to...
...start the true Thanksgiving prep this weekend!
It's time to start the shopping, cooking, cleaning, baking, and prepping.
Here's to a holiday filled with family, love, and the time to slow down and enjoy it.

What are your Friday Ramblings?
Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Idea: The ultimate checklist for hosting Thanksgiving dinner.

Thanksgiving is my absolute favorite holiday.  It's also my turn to host and I enjoy every minute of it.  I love the idea of counting our blessings, the aroma, and the cooking prep with my family.  I love the food, the company, and especially the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.  If you don't squeal with joy at Santa's grande entrance during the parade, are you even real?!

I've watched and helped my mother host Thanksgiving since I was born.  Once she was unable to host anymore, I took over the holiday with a family of my own.  I take great pride in continuing her traditions and adding a few of my own.  Madre may not say it out loud, but I can see that she is just as proud!  With all of this experience behind me, I'm happy to share some of my tips and tricks.

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The only checklist you'll need to host Thanksgiving.


Three weeks before

__ Create a menu.  This should include beverages, appetizers, main course, and dessert.  

__Create a to do list for all prep work or just print out this one with added lines for each dish.

__Gather recipes where necessary.

Idea:  Store the recipes in your recipe book or box for next year too.  I love this recipe book to store all my favorite ones and the pass down to my daughter when she gets older.

__Create a full shopping list.  Separate by store and try to add prices where possible.

__Set a firm budget.  You should use your shopping list as a guide.

__Do a deep scrub of your home to prep for the big day.

__Send out informal invitations to your guest list with a designated time.

Idea:  Or be a little extra and send out these super cute turkey invitations to your guests for a visual reminder.

__Start purchasing nonperishable items weekly to lessen the burden of the full shopping.

__Purchase the turkey before the right size, brand, and price is gone.

__Double check that you have enough table space and chairs for your guests.

Idea: If you need to purchase or borrow extra chairs and tables, start asking now.  You don't want to make this a last minute scramble and suddenly people are eating on your couch.

__Start to make room in the fridge and freezer for your Thanksgiving food and leftovers.

__Request the day before Thanksgiving off of work for prep work.

Two weeks before

__Ensure that all last minute decorating of your home is done.

__Pick out your family's outfits and your apron for the big day.

__If you have an extra refrigerator or freezer, plug it in to store the extra food.

__Pull out your fine china, silver wear, and table clothes for a quick cleaning.

__Purchase the wine and other beverages you budgeted for.

Sunday

__Finish all of your grocery shopping.

__If you're having overnight guests, set up the guest room and bathroom.

__Get the furry family members washed and groomed.

__Make the sauce for the stuffed shells.

Monday

__Put the turkey in the fridge to start the slow defrost.

__Make the fresh cranberry sauce and then stick it in the fridge for Thursday.

__Make the chocolate pudding pie and/or jello and then stick it in the fridge for Thursday.

Tuesday

__Clean, dry, and set aside all dishes, cups, and utensils that have been sitting in storage.

__Get fresh flowers and arrange them nicely for the table.

Idea:  Are fresh flowers too much work to do each year?  Try investing in a pretty centerpiece like this one with silk Sunflowers instead.  You'll be saving money each year that use it in place of fresh cut flowers.

__If needed, gather all extra tables and chairs.

__Remove and store the glass protecting your dining room table in a safe place.

__Add the leaf to your dining room table for extra space.

__Iron the table clothes.

__Put away any everyday decor that you won't be using in a safe place.

__Recruit any last minute help to prepare the meal.

__Bake the homemade pumpkin pie or dessert #1.

__Bake the homemade apple pie or dessert #2.

__Go to bed early and prepare the most hectic day of the year!

Wednesday

__Wake up before the sun comes up and send the kids out of the house.

__Tell Alexa to play your favorite play list.

Idea: Be prepared with aluminum half trays or oven safe trays to cook all pre-made dishes for an easy warm up.

__Prepare the stuffed shells with your homemade cheese stuffing and sauce or dish #1.

__Make the homemade stuffed mushrooms or dish #2.

__Make the sweet potato casserole or dish #3
.
__Make the brussel sprouts or dish #4.

__Make the butternut squash or dish #5.

__Prepare the stuffing for the turkey.

__Make the mashed potatoes or dish #6.

__Prepare the guava and cheese or dessert #3.

__Make the corn bread.

Idea:  Make them as muffins for easier serving and less crumbly cutting.

__Make the pumpkin bread.

__Make the flan or dessert #4.

__Clean the turkey and prepare it for the big day tomorrow.

__Set up all seating arrangements and folding tables.

__Set the table in the special holiday way.

__Finish all last minute cleaning and dusting.

__Charge the camcorder or camera.

__Set your alarm clock & coffee pot with enough time to cook the turkey before guests arrive.

Thanksgiving Day

__Season, dress, and stuff the turkey.

Idea:  Set multiple timers for basting and to check the temperature.  I use my Amazon Alexa for this, because she's literally my assistant.  Additionally, you're going to want to make sure ahead of time that you have a reliable meat thermometer like this one.  You don't want to eyeball a turkey.

__Turn on the Thanksgiving parade and relax for a moment with your cup of coffee.

__Pick up fresh Italian bread from the bakery.

__Pick up the struffoli from the bakery.

__Stop and watch Santa Claus end the parade.  

__Bread and fry the artichoke hearts or dish #7.

__Prepare the antipasto.  I use cold meats, sliced cheeses, pesto, nuts, and dried fruits.

Idea:  I plate mine on the biggest cutting board I have to save serving trays for the main course.  Mine is similar to this one and does a fabulous job of holding the antipasto and looking just as pretty empty.

__Once the turkey is cooked, cover it in tin foil.  Remove and plate the stuffing.

__Make the gravy.

__Make the salad.

__Slice, cover, and plate the bread.

__Prepare for an easy clean up after dinner.  Wash the dishes, clean the stove, and take out the trash.

__Hang some extra dish towels in an easily accessible place for the helpful guests.

__Preheat the oven to a low setting to warm up all your dishes.

__Fill the ice bucket.

__Put out beverages and don't forget to fill the water pitcher.

__Put on some calming dinner music.

__Warm up your dinner, serve, say a prayer of thanks, and feast!!

Tip:  Don't forget to put the wishbone aside so it has time to dry.

__After dinner is cleared, make the coffee and espresso.

__Heat up any desserts that should be served warm.

__Break the wishbone.

__Go around the table to say what you're thankful for.

__Be prepared with a lighthearted, fun game to play with your guests.

Idea:  We love to play Color Brain!  This game is fun for the adults and the Disney version is fun for the kiddies.

__Be aware of alcohol consumption.  You may want to order an Uber or make another pot of coffee in preparation for a sleepover.

__Make to go plates if your leftovers are real excessive.

__Don't forget to take lots of pictures to remember this day.

__After your guests are gone, take a moment to relax and count your blessings after a successful day.

__Dust off your Elf on a Shelf to greet your kids Friday morning!

Did I miss something?  Tell me so I can add it.


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