Friday, September 28, 2012

This is my final Pinterest project this week.  Please click on the picture to see more detail. There was no good way to get a picture of these glass Christmas ornaments!! I had seen a pin for Glass balls with your child or grandchild's name painted on them and I had to give it a try. Some green circles and red dots add to the decorated ornament.  Red, green and white Christmas ribbon, purchased at Hobby Lobby, really set off my Christmas ornaments.

Now for the "how to".... I purchased the midsized clear Christmas ornaments at Hobby Lobby. If I were doing them again, I would go for the biggest glass ornaments.  I used red, green and white acrylic paint. I started by free handing the names in Red. It takes two to three coats to get good coverage on glass. Acrylic does dry quickly so you can work on another craft while you wait. Once I had a good solid coat of red, I used the tip of a small paint brush to add white dots to the red names. Again, it takes about two coats of paint. Lastly I added the green circles and when they were completely dry, I went back with a dash of white (using a dry brush technique) just for highlighting. The pinterest ornaments had little red swirls on them but I could not make those look right so I just added three little red dots randomly over the ornament.  I am happy with my effort and they would make a great inexpensive Christmas gift.

I am taking the weekend off...heading to north Georgia to see my parents. And when I get back it will be OCTOBER!!

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Another Pinterest Meal! This one was my favorite so far!! I made Tomato Basil Parmesan Soup and served it with Bread. I must admit I did not make the bread as I have found that Rhodes Frozen Bread Loaves taste better than anything I can make from scratch. Each bag has three frozen loaves...all you do is take on out, put it in a loaf pan sprayed with Pam and let it thaw then rise. I put my oven at 170 degrees and leave it on for about 10 minutes, then I turn the oven off and put my frozen bread in the oven and leave it all day. By about four p.m. it is ready to bake. Easy Peasy.

Here is the recipe for the soup....

2 14 0z cans diced tomatoes with juice
1 c finely diced celery
1 c. finely diced carrots
1 c. finely diced onion
1 tsp oregano
1 T basil
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup butter
4 cups chicken broth
1 cup Parmesan Cheese
2 cups half and half(warmed)
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

Add tomatoes, celery, onion, carrots, chicken broth, and herbs to the crockpot.
Cover and cook on low for 5 to 7 hours.
About thirty minutes before serving, prepare a roux. Melt butter in pan...add flour and cook for 5 minutes. Slowly stir in one cup of hot soup. Add another three cups of hot soup, stir until smooth then add back to crockpot. Stir in half and half and parmesan cheese. Let cook in crockpot for another thirty minutes before serving. Taste the soup and see if you need to add more basil and oregano as they spices can become bland after cooking all day.

I will tweak this recipe a bit the next time I make it. I might add more basil at the end. Also I might cut back on parmesan and half and half.  It was very tasty but I have to admit that I did puree my soup after it cooked all day. The celery had cooked down to 'string' and it was not too appealing.  I think pureeing the soup also made it look more appetizing.

I will be making this again on a cold winter day!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

 I am loving the cool fall temperatures here in Alabama. Walking in the brisk morning air is so refreshing. Today I noticed that several of my neighbors have added pumpkins to their front porches!!  I finally found fall M&Ms so I made a batch of my fall mix...candy corn, peanuts and M&Ms. I gave a goodie bag to one of my neighbors who is recuperating from surgery. I also made a little fall goodie for Kendall's teacher. I found this cute green bucket at The Dollar Tree and with the addition of tissue paper and a ribbon it made a perfect container for some "goodies". I put the fall mix in a clear plastic goodie bag found in the cake decorating aisle at Walmart and after filling it up, I tied it with raffia I had on hand.  A pretty fall votive I found at Ross rounded out my goodie bucket for Mrs R. I also added a thank you note as I think all teachers need a pat on the back every now and then.
 I love my pretty coffee mug that I only use in the fall. It just cheers me up whenever I pour my morning coffee.
And last, another Pinterest project. I had seen a painting similar to this on Pinterest...but they put Happy Fall Ya'll at the top of their painting. Well after my lettering problems I decided to just leave it blank. I like the primitive look of these punkins. It will go up in my kitchen after Halloween. Right now I have my BOO pumpkin hanging on the wall above all the pumpkins on my kitchen hutch.

Tomorrow I hope to post a Christmas pinterest project that I have been working on! It's the time of the year to work on Christmas projects if you want them to be ready come December. And at the rate this year is flying by, Christmas will be here before we know it!!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

I think I am going to make this PINTEREST week on my blog. I have done several recipes and projects from the Pinterest site in an effort to "do" more homey things as fall is upon us.

I have loved all the Subway art I have seen on pinterest as well as on several blogs. I am not a good "letterer" with paint so when I saw a "pin" that suggested using stickers on canvas for the lettering, then paint over it...I was onboard for this project. The canvas shows the  names of all the streets you have lived on ( and as you can see I have lived on several!!) and they are listed like Subway Stops. Alas...I was not very happy with painting over the stickers. Some the paint bled under, others I had a hard time getting off the canvas.  I had to touch up and still I was not happy with it, being the type A person I am when it comes to crafts. I want them to be perfect.  Every now and then I have to remind myself of the Amish way of doing things. The Amish know that only God is perfect so they deliberately add a few "errors" to quilts so they will not be perfect.

When it was finished it was bright black and white...and there was a space between Brandywine and Jackson Way that was bugging me. Frankly I was tempted to toss it but decided that I would work on it some more. I added the little red heart to indicate our present home sweet home and I thought that worked well. Then I was upset because the bright black and white showed every blemish and bleed through, I decided to "rough" it up to make it look old. I took out some fine sand paper and gave the piece a light sanding.  Then I looked through my paints for some burnt umber...mixed a little with water and rubbed it over the whole thing, giving it a weathered look.  Finally I could live with it and hung it in my closet last week. Hubs saw it when he tossed his workout clothes in the laundry basket there and he asked me where I got that!! I told him I painted it and I think he likes it but then he is easy to please.

So there you have it...I want to share the good the bad and the ugly of my Pinterest projects this week. Don't get discouraged when things do not turn out as you wish, just realize that many things can be salvaged and enjoyed!

Monday, September 24, 2012

This is the recipe from Pinterest that I made to take to our Sunday School Fellowship on Saturday evening. I call them Hanky Pankies because they are similar to another recipe that I have by that name. They are simple to make and the men love them.

Hanky Pankies
1 # ground beef
1#hot sausage
1 tsp garlic powder( I used minced garlic)
1 tsp Worchestershire sauce
1 tsp oregano
2 packages of Hawaiian Rolls

Brown the ground beef and sausage and drain. Return to pan and over medium heat, add garlic, Worchestershire sauce, and oregano. Stir until well blended.  Add velveeta and stir until it is melted. Spoon a heaping tablespoon of meat mixture on a Hawaiian roll and serve.

I made my Hanky Pankies about two hours before our party so I  put the rolls in two 13 by nine dishes and covered with aluminum foil. I baked them for about 20 minutes at 300 degrees just before we left so they would be warm for the party.  Another recipe that I have uses this same meat mixture but you spoon the meat onto the little rye party squares and bake them in the oven for about 20 minutes ...this is tasty as well. The rye party squares really adds to the flavor of the appetizer.

I am planning to make another Pinterest recipe on Wednesday evening. It is a soup and should be a perfect dinner for a fall evening. I have found Pinterest to be very good at motivating me to try new recipes and crafts.  And as Martha Stewart would say, That's a good thing!"

Saturday, September 22, 2012

I saw this "pin" on Pinterest this week and had to share it with my blog readers.  So often when we are waiting in the hallway, we are crying and beating our fists against the wall!! This is something to think on in uncertain times.

It is a beautiful Saturday here in Alabama. I hope to move some of my shrubs today...several have become overgrown and need some attention. I will plant some pansies later. Pansies are such happy little flowers!! My dear husband's grandmother was named Pansy. Did you know that Scarlett O'Hara was almost Pansy O'Hara? It was Miss Mitchell's first choice for her heroine's name in Gone With The Wind.

This evening we will join our Sunday School Class for  fun and fellowship. I am making a Pinterest recipe, in my quest to start cooking and not just "pinning". I will let you know how it turns out!  Have a blessed weekend!

Friday, September 21, 2012

 I confess...I purchased this little gem at Cracker Barrel last week. I love all things Christmas and this pretty tree changes colors so how could I resist? They might be GONE soon and I would not have one at all. I think the grands will love it...that is how I justify these kinds of purchases. Cracker Barrel had lots of interesting holiday items when I  breakfasted there with my friends last week. It might be a good place to do some Christmas shopping. I am also seeing lots of other stores putting out their Christmas merchandise. I stopped in Kirklands yesterday to browse and it looked like a Winter Wonderland. It is hard to believe that when I was a child, Christmas items did not appear in the stores until after Thanksgiving!! Well the Sears Christmas Catalog did arrive in late October come to think of it. Oh the joys of sitting with that catalog and looking at all the toys that were shown on the pages of the Wishbook.  It is hard to imagine the children of today being fascinated by a catalog...maybe if it was an ap on an ipad that would get their attention.
And Christmas is really going to be here before we know it. Our tickets to A Christmas Carol at the Alabama Shakespeare Theater arrived this week.  For many people who think Alabama is a vast wasteland when it comes to culture, I would like to tell you about the Alabama Shakespeare Festival. It is a beautiful arts complex located in Montgomery, Alabama. They produce quality plays year round and if you want to see a production of a Shakespeare play, here is the place to view one!  When I saw that ASF would be doing a production of A Christmas Carol just before Christmas,  I was on board to go and watch my favorite Dickens' work.  We are seeing the matinee so it is an easy drive down and back in one day.  We saw Hamlet there two years ago and it was excellent.  One of the perks of an empty nest is the ability to do the things you did not have the time or money to do when you were raising your children.

Have a fabulous Friday Friends...I am off to do the grocery run, then I hope to organize my craft room! Unfortunately it has gotten out of control and I intend to tame it today!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

 Yesterday was a "tweak" day at my house.  I cleaned, tidied and did some organizing.  First I want to share this cute little pillow with you...Count Your Blessings. As I clean my house, I am always reminded how blessed I am to have a nice home.
 I have had my eye on this comforter that I saw at Tuesday Morning....I thought it would be perfect in my guest room. I had been using the old comforter that had been on my bed before I redecorated the Master Bedroom last spring.  It was a light green, almost the same color as the walls.  It did the job but was rather boring. I love the warmer tones in this comforter and it coordinates with the shower curtain in my guest bath as well. You can see a close up of the print below.
 Now on to some organizing....Thanks to Thrifty Decor Chick( you can find her on my blog roll) I was able to take one of her helpful hints and apply it at my own house. Recently she was organizing her closet and she found that Drapery Holdbacks work great for hanging scarves, bags etc in the closet. They are much deeper than normal hooks and they look pretty too. I found this package at Ross for $4.99. All the hardware needed to hang the holdbacks are included in the package.
 Find your spot, drill two holes. Now I am lazy and I have found that a hammer and an awl works well for most small holes needed for anchors.  One great thing about the drapery hold backs is that the finial screws off allowing for easy installation. Once you have the hook attached to the all, simply screw the finial back on to the hook.
 Here is is all finished and waiting to be utilized.
 Here are some of the bags that had been laying on the floor of my closet...taking up valuable floorspace.
 Here they are all neatly organized and hanging in the guest room closet which is seldom used. Now when I need a bag, I can get it easily and the bags do not get dirty from laying on the floor!!
I also added one to my closet to hold all my perfectly. I may be heading back to Ross to get some more holdbacks to use elsewhere around the house. Thanks Thrifty Decor Chick for a winning household hint!!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Gone Girl has been "the talk" of my Tuesday Afternoon Book Group so I had to read it to find out what the Buzz was about.  I must admit that it was a real page turner! One of the better thrillers I have read in quite a while but I will say that reader discretion is advised. There are scenes in the book that may be offensive to some readers.

Amy Elliott is the beloved only daughter of Rand and Marybeth Elliott. They are psychologists who have written the Amazing Amy books that have been their bread and butter for 20 years, making them very rich along the way.  The Amy books can be found in every school library across the nation and Amy is an example for all children as she always does what is right. The Real Life Amy struggles along these lines. She wants to be perfect like Amazing Amy but she (of course) falls short. Any person in her life who points out her character flaws, is no longer a friend to Amy and is punished in particularly vicious ways.  Fast forward to Adult Amy...she meets Nick Dunne and realizes she has met Mr Right.  Nick is a small town boy who has worked his way to being a popular writer for a magazine based in New York City. But Nick is not perfect. He is a very self involved Mama's Boy and seems to enjoy being taken care of by the women in his life.  He and Amy marry and all is well for about four years. Then Nick loses his job as a result of the downturn in the economy. Amy's parents have lost their fortune due to bad investments, forcing them to borrow from Amy's trust fund. Amy and Nick are left with enough money to buy a bar in Nick's hometown of North Carthage, Missouri.  Arriving in Missouri, they are forced to rent a house in a neighborhood of houses that are vacant due to foreclosures...many are invaded by squatters! If that was not depressing enough, Nick's mom is dying of cancer and his dad is in a local nursing home suffering from Alzheimers.  In addition to his job helping his twin sister run The Bar, Nick takes on a part time teaching position at the local junior college. As he sees it, he is teaching them about a journalism career that is only a pipe dream.  Let's just say Amazing Amy's life is not so amazing any more.

On the morning of their fifth wedding anniversary, Amy goes missing.  Of course the police and public opinion settle on Nick as the evil husband who has done away with his wife. And there is plenty of evidence to prove that Nick is a liar and a cheater. Just when you think you have this mystery figured out, there is a twist in the road!! Hats off to Ms Flynn for providing the reader with a very good whodunit! I could not help but note that the main character is Nick Dunne...could this be a tip of the hat to Dominick Dunne? Dominick Dunne was known as Nick to many of his friends and of course the late Mr Dunne is known for his novels about barely disguised real life murders.  One of the tv personalities who led the witch hunt against Nick had to be based on Nancy Grace!!  My favorite line from the book was when Nick asked his parents in law if they thought Amy might have been kidnapped by Judith Viorst so that Alexander would have no more terrible, horrible, no good, very bad days?  Now that was a laugh out loud moment though inappropriate for a "grieving" husband to even suggest it!

If you enjoy mysteries, this one will keep you guessing until the end of the book!! Give it a try!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Here is a picture of my Pumpkin Dump Cake that I pinned on my Desserts board on Pinterest.  I was able to share some with my sweet neighbors, Jean and John and I also gave some to my friend, Susan, who lives down the street from me. Marvin and I do not need a whole cake so I enjoy baking and sharing.

It was tasty. The next time I bake it I may switch the cinnamon for pumpkin pie spice to kick the flavor up a notch.  We also thought it tasted better at room temperature than served warm. So here's the recipe.

Pumpkin Dump Cake

1 box yellow cake mix
1 15 oz can of pumpkin puree
1 can evaporated milk( I am assuming it is the large can...I did not have any on hand so I googled for a substitute and found 1/4 c half and half mixed with 3/4 c of whole milk will do the trick and it worked great in this recipe)
3 large eggs
1 1/2 c sugar
1 t cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup chopped pecans
1 stick of butter(

Grease a 13 by 9 pan( I used Bakers Joy) and preheat oven to 350.
Mix pumpkin, eggs, milk, sugar, cinnamon and salt together. Pour into prepared pan.
Sprinkle dry cake mix over pumpkin with chopped pecans. Drizzle melted butter over the top.

Bake at 350 for 50 to 55 minutes.

Everyone enjoyed this..would be good for a Thanksgiving Day Breakfast!!

Monday, September 17, 2012

 This was the scene on Main Street in Hartselle, Alabama on Saturday as the town celebrated Depot Days. Streets are closed off so that people can walk down main street and check out all the vendors and activities. Hartselle is a cute small town with lots of antique stores as well as other nice businesses.  If you ever visit north Alabama, plan a stop in Hartselle.
 Here is Kendall's painting that was displayed in the art show. We are going to work on it a bit more this week. It needs "tweaking"!!.  I am proud of my little artist!!
This was the first through third grade section of the show.  Grandpa and I had to get a picture for Kendall's photo album. I have photo albums for all my grands. My mother did the same thing for my children and it is a tradition I hope to carry on.

I did get some of my own projects finished this weekend and I tried the Pumpkin Dump Cake that was on my Pinterest wall. I will be sharing these posts on Nanaland this week. Also be on the lookout for a book review of Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. It was  a real page turner!!!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

On the agenda for today is a visit to Depot Days to see Kendall's painting that was entered in the Childrens Art Fair.  I helped her to paint it this week so I need to go and get a picture of it hanging in the gallery! Being the perfectionist that I am, I would have liked for us to have had time to touch up a few things but I am learning that everything does not have to be perfect.  I also hope to make a cake that I saw on Pinterest. I have decided to be more intentional in trying some of the things I "pin" there! My 80 something neighbors love it when I make a dessert and share it with them so that is another reason to get busy in the kitchen. The recipe is for a Pumpkin Dump Cake...just perfect for an early fall treat.   Tomorrow is church. Our Sunday School Class is starting a new lesson series, 100 Bible Verses Everyone Should Know. I have not memorized verses in quite a while so this will be a challenge. I am going to learn my verses in KJV as that is what I memorized as a child. Many of the verses, I "know" but I am not word perfect on them so I hope to change that.   Have a blessed weekend friends!!

Friday, September 14, 2012

I have been a Mary Engelbreit fan for YEARS!! Her cheerful images always lift my spirits. And she uses many quotes from Edgar Guest who is an American poet that I enjoy so that is two artists for the price of one!!

Yesterday I made a Target run while waiting to pick Landon up at preschool and of course, I had to look at the $1and $2.50 aisles that are located at the front of the store. I noticed quite a few ladies congregated there and what were they looking at? A plethora of Mary Engelbreit items....note cards, stickers, magnets and even some cute dry erase boards.  Well you know I had to load up on ME stationery. Kendall has begun a correspondence with some of her Savannah Cousins and I know she will enjoy the Make a Card kit that I picked up for $1.  I also enjoy sending (and receiving) snail mail so I will put my cute notecards to good use as well.

While I was in the store, I also took time to purchase some things for Landon's preschool class. As an old preschool teacher, I remember how excited I got when parents would bring classroom treats. I filled a jackolantern bucket from the dollar aisle with Smarties( they use those as rewards), hand sanitizer, fall foam stickers and a Max and Ruby Halloween book. I also added some chocolates for Miss S and Miss L.  Landon has really enjoyed school and looks forward to going each Tuesday and Thursday. After spending time with his friends at school, Nana is pretty poor company the rest of the week.:) I am thankful for good teachers...they make such a difference in a child's life.

My weekend plans include finishing up a craft project that has been in my craft room for two weeks now. Maybe I will be able to share it with you on Monday! Off to MOPs this morning where I enjoy being with my young friends.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

When I rolled out of bed this morning, put on my walking clothes and headed out the door it was still dark. It is hard to step out into my dark street with only the street lights for company. But as I walked I enjoyed the colors of sunrise. The soft pinks and lavenders are so beautiful. It always reminds me of the Creator of the Universe. How anyone could think that this beautiful world "just happened" is beyond me.  Once I make myself hit the pavement, I enjoy the solitude of early morning...I hear the birds begin to sing, I notice that the dogwoods at the end of my street are beginning to turn the lovely red color they wear in the fall.  I use this time to pray for my family and friends. It is a good time...but why is it that it is so hard to make myself do it every morning? Discipline is one the things I struggle with! I am disciplined in many areas of my life. My house is organized, I keep a schedule in my homemaking so that we have clothes to wear, the house is clean and there is food to eat. My children laugh at me because I start Christmas shopping in why is it so hard to be disciplined in the area of food and exercise? I started walking at 5:45 in the morning because it is so hot in the summertime that if I did not walk early in the morning I would not walk at all. I recently read an article about the top ten benefits of helps your metabolism, boosts your spirits and you get a good dose of Vitamin D. I know all that...but still I struggle.  In the winter, I often use the cold temps as an excuse to put off walking but this year I am going to keep going...I have a nice warm gloves, a cozy hat and layers of clothing guaranteed to keep me warm! I have a friend who walks five miles each morning...the only reason she does not walk is if it is lightening!! Now that is discipline(although her daughter says she is obsessive compulsive!!:)) I think I am very virtuous for walking two miles five days a week!!  Now that I am keeping Kendall and Landon more often, it has motivated me to be in better shape so I can enjoy them and encourage them to be active as well.  Here's hoping for a healthy fall and winter!!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

 I got busy "falling" up my home this week. I am a big kid when it comes to holidays.  You know it is fall when candy corn arrives in the grocery store.  I like to put out this fall mix to munch on. I could not find any fall M&Ms to add to the mix but I will be on the look out for some to add to my fall trail mix.
 My fall buffet...
 I found another cute fall basket at Tammy Eddy's Antiques last week. It has a leather cord that I looped over the finial on my secretary. I filled it with silk leaves and flowers. I think this probably cost less than   $10 altogether.
 The pumpkin patch on top of my kitchen hutch. I never met a pumpkin I did not like!!
Here is Miss Crow, a gift from my friend, Joyce...Mr Crow is on the other side of the hutch.  I found the cute little pumpkin with the big smile marked down to 99 cents at Pineapples, one of my favorite local stores.

When my grands came to the house yesterday they loved looking for all the fall touches! I love seeing those excited little faces!!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

It is hard to believe that it has been eleven years since 9-11. I have lived through many sad days in history but I must say that 9-11 stands out from them all. I was in second grade during the Cuban Missile Crisis and though I did not really understand what was going on, I picked up on the fear of the people around me. I can remember my parents and their friends debating the issue of building a missile shelter. Who would want to live if everyone else died in a nuclear missile attack was the conclusion that was reached.  I remember that my second grade school teacher calmed our class by reminding us that God takes care of little children, that we had to trust God. In present day America, Miss Macie would probably be taken to court and would lose her job over such a comment. I was in the third grade when President Kennedy was killed. Who would kill our president? It was unthinkable in my little mind. I remember watching the funeral on television. I was home alone in Huntsville, Alabama when I heard that the Space Shuttle had exploded after lift off. Again, such horror right in our living rooms via tv.  But 9-11 stands out as a truly terrifying day in my memory. I was working at Central Weekday School and I had no access to tv, so I had to rely on the information all the moms gave us as they dropped their children off at school. When I got home from work and saw all the television footage, I was just sick to my stomach. Later the anger kicked many innocent people who lost their lives. I also remember the "good" things from that week, Congress singing God Bless America, all the flags flying proudly and a patriotism that lasted for a while. Today as I remember 9-11, I pray that God will bless our Land and that we will return to the roots that our country was founded on back in 1776!

Monday, September 10, 2012

 One of the great pleasures of a week at the beach is uninterrupted reading time.  I read six books last week and enjoyed every one of them! I am on the lookout for The Dashwood Sisters Tell All after reading Jane Austen Ruined My Life by Beth Pattillo. I am almost finished with Mr Darcy Broke My Heart....
I did not become a Jane Austen fan until I was older. When I was young, I found her writing too wordy and old fashioned! But I am a convert and I have read every Jane Austen novel and while I have enjoyed them all, Pride and Prejudice remains my favorite. When I came across Ms Pattillo's books in the Book Sale Room at our library I had to purchase them. If you enjoy Jane Austen, you will find these light reads fun. (Of course the beautiful book covers will lure you in as well!!) In Jane Austen Ruined My Life, a young English professor who is in disgrace travels to England to do research on Ms Austen. While in London, she becomes aware of a group called the Formidables, who strive to protect Ms Austen's private life. This select group holds Jane's secret letters and manuscripts.  Along the same lines, Mr Darcy Broke My Heart, features a young woman who goes to Oxford for a two week Jane Austen Seminar. While there, she also comes in contact with the Formidables as well as falling in love with her own Mr Darcy.  I look forward to reading The Dashwood Sisters Tell All. Thanks Ms Pattillo for taking me away from the cares of the world for a bit!!

I also read two books that were "serious" reads. The Reader by Bernard Schlink was a short book but compelling. It is definitely for adult readers as it tells the story of a young  man who is lured into an affair with a woman who is 20 years his senior. Set in Germany in the late 50s, 15 year old Michael meets Hanna and his life will never be the same. During the affair with a woman old enough to be his mother, Michael finds that one way to get to Hanna's soul is through reading. He reads many books to her over the year of their affair. It takes Michael a while to realize that Hanna is illiterate.  One day Hanna vanishes and Michael moves on with his life. He is a law student when he comes in contact with Hanna again. She is on trial for War Crimes. Hanna had been a guard at one of the Nazi concentration camps and she must pay for her cruelty in allowing a large group of women to die in a fire. Michael cannot believe that the same Hanna he loved was capable of this crime. It is a book that will make you think about life and the decisions that some people make that will alter the course of their lives.

Lastly, I read Clover Adams by Natalie Dykstra. I have always enjoyed biographies and this one looked interesting.  It is the story of a young woman who was married to Henry Adams, grandson of John Quincy Adams. Clover's real name was Marian Hooper Adams but her mother gave her the nickname, Clover,(her lucky child) as she was born after Mrs Hooper had been quite ill. Born to wealth an priviledge, enjoying all that the world had to offer, Clover suffered from a melancholia that had plagued the Hooper family. Clover Adams in an interesting look at life among the wealthy Boston Brahmin just after the Civil War.

It will probably be quite a while before I read six books in one week again but it was fun while it lasted!

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Everyone must be doing fall Pinterest projects because many of my favorite bloggers have not posted in a bit!!  We arrived home this afternoon after stopping in Birmingham to visit the grands(and Ben and Katy!). Baylor was in fine form after having surgery to put tubes in his ears yesterday. Of course he blew by Nana to get to Grandpa but that is ok with me. That boy LOVES his Grandpa. I got some extra loving from Margaret! On arriving home, the first order of business was to put everything away. Call me anal retentive but I cannot abide a big mess! Then I went next door to get my mail from our wonderful neighbors who kept an eye on our home while we were gone. I found two Anniversary cards in the snail mail, one from my neighbor, Jean and one from my friend, Linda, who NEVER misses my birthday or anniversary. Just saying Happy Anniversary online does not do it for her. I am so blessed to have a faithful friend like Linda.

Now I am collapsed on the sofa with the computer, catching up with everyone online. As Dorothy so aptly put it, There is NO place like Home!! We enjoyed our vacation but we are looking forward to sleeping in our own bed and going to church in the morning.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Well our anniversary vacation is coming to an end as we must leave on Saturday. It has been a great week, resting and sunning! There have been a few cloudy days but we have managed to spend quality beach time every day. Tuesday evening we had a nice meal at Cobalt in Orange Beach. It was storming so we had a window side view of a lightning show from the restaurant on the water. We also enjoyed listening to live music as we enjoyed our meal. This morning we got up and had Beignets at Cafe Beignet. They were delicious! After that we shopped for tshirts for the grands. One of the best things about coming to the beach after Labor Day is no crowds and cheaper prices on tshirts. We are thinking of booking for next year as well but we will come later in September to get the fall discount! Of course we have to pray that no hurricanes arrive to spoil our plans!! We did see several I survived Hurricane Isaac tshirts at the souvenir shop this morning. As they were only a dollar each, it seems not many people were interested in purchasing them.  We will have lunch with our friends, Deborah and Don, tomorrow as they are arriving for their vacation here. Gulf Shores/Orange Beach is a popular vacation destination for north Alabama folks. As much as I have enjoyed my vacation, I am looking forward to getting home and seeing my grands!! Landon started preschool this week and he LOVES it according to his mom. These little ones are growing up so quickly! Our Baylor will be having tubes put in his little ears tomorrow morning. Please say a prayer that all goes well with that. We will stop to see Margaret and Baylor on our way home from the beach. I am also looking forward to decorating my home for fall....every year it seems that I collect just a bit more in the way of fall decor!! I cannot resist it. I also have plans for a fall scape on my small front porch. It includes a child's wagon, small haybales, pumpkins and mums. Pictures will be posted when it is completed!! I look forward to seeing all the fall ideas my blog friends will be posting soon!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Today is our 36th wedding anniversary! We were married in 1976...The Bicentennial Year! What a great year that was all the way around. So many people were feeling patriotic and celebrating the 200th birthday of America. We were married on Labor Day Weekend and the fourth birthday of my little cousin, Holly, who was my flower girl. Today she is 40!! So hard to believe that many years have passed by!

We are having a wonderful time at the restful. My sister in law, Lanier, told us to rest, relax and hold hands. Daughter in law, Katy, told us to forget that we are Mom and Dad, Nana and Grandpa and just relax and be Marvin and Arlene. We are trying to take all that advice.

I have been collecting some shells from the beach. Marvin has laughed at me as I have picked up many broken shells. After Hurricane Isaac, lots of big broken shells have washed ashore here at the beach. The "inside" of many of these shells are just beautiful. Some are very worn on the outside but polished to a sheen on the inside.These shells remind me of our marriage in some ways. Over 36 years we have been through storms and we have been broken by the Master. But in the breaking, I hope our insides are becoming more beautiful.  I know we were prettier on the outside 36 years ago today:). But we have earned our gray hair, the wrinkles that show where smiles have been as we have raised our kids and are enjoying our grands are precious to us. Our sorrows have sanded away our rough edges and have taught us to have more charity toward others who are in deep waters. The adage, "I am a work in progress" is so true. We have gained wisdom as we have grown older and we have a stronger desire to be conformed to Christ. I am hoping God grants us many more years together. Other than my salvation, Marvin is God's greatest gift to me in this life. Happy Anniversary Dear One.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Views from our balcony. Hubs says he wishes we could just retire and live down here!! I told him if we lived here we would not enjoy it as much...remember Marmee( in Little Women) allowing the March girls to have a week off from chores? After several days they were tired of it!! We often think we would enjoy such pursuits but in reality we all need to feel that we are contributing to society! We are having a wonderful time. So far the weather is great. There was a thunderstorm this morning so we took advantage of the local outlet malls. We purchased some shoes but nothing else caught our attention.

Please look at  my blog roll and check out Sweet T makes Three. My friend, Jenn, posted some cute pictures of our snacks at the MOPs kick off meeting. There were so many creative "Beach" Snacks as our theme this year is PLUNGE!! Thanks for sharing Jenn!

We are having a lazy Labor Day...planning to hit the beach later to soak up some sun!! Hope all you are enjoying the day!