Sunday, January 30, 2011

Curse #8 - The Hypnotist Baby

I promise, I was smart before I had kids. I had a sharp mind. I could go to Walmart without a list, and not forget a single item. However, soon after I had Brandon I noticed I was not remembering as well as I used to. Mommy brain, I’ve heard it called. Since Collin’s birth, my mind is even worse. I’m convinced both boys had a piece of my brain in their hands when they were born. Next time, (if there is a next time) after the doctor hands me the baby, I’m checking its hands…if I remember.

Where was I…oh yes, my brain. Since Collin’s birth, I cannot remember anything. I forgot for a solid week to get a prescription filled. I only got it filled after repeated reminders from Shad and my mom. I’ve been blaming this forgetfulness on hormones. (Poor hormones they get blamed for everything with me.) Hormones was my first theory, but now I have a new theory, the hypnotist baby.

Let me explain. I will walk into a room, place Collin in his bouncy seat, and start working on a task. Soon though I look down to see my sweet little baby doing something incredibly cute like…I don’t know…breathing (everything he does is cute). I then start looking at him and saying things like, “You’re the best baby ever.” “You’re my little Cassanova, my little Romeo.” Suddenly, I stop and think to myself, “What was I doing. Why did I come into this room.” Curses…Hypnotized by the baby again. I decided to take pictures of this phenomenom so I wouldn’t seem so crazy. Collin’s words will be italicized. When you read it, think of his voice sounding like Antonio Banderas, that’s who I think he sounds like right now.

Ahem...Excuse me Mommy. Lots of cuteness going on down here.

That's odd. She's not looking. I'll go for the killer combination, full smile and chubby legs!

That didn't work? *gasp!* uh oh! I lost my sock, Mommy!

Are you kidding me? The sock didn't work. I guess when you don't have pants on, she's not worried about a missing sock.

I've got to change plans. I didn't want to do this, but desparate times call for desparate measures.

You don't love me anymore!!!

Ha ha ha! Wait for it...

Mission accomplished!

Isn't he the cutest baby ever! He's just my little chubbsters. I just love him...What was I talking about? Come on Collin! Enough with the Jedi mind tricks!

Post linked to Works for Me Wednesday at We are that Family.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Saturdate with Southern Plate. {Mama Reed's tea cakes}

In case you don't know what Saturdate with Southern Plate is, you can check it out here.

This week I made Tea Cakes. I loOoOve tea cakes. They are absolutely my favorite cookie...cake...whatever you want to call them (just don't call them sugar cookies). However, these cookies did not turn out like I thought they would. They weren't bad, but they just didn't taste like I thought they should. Here's some reasons why.

1. The directions said to roll the dough out thin. I thought I had done that, but it was not thin enough.

2. The directions included an icing recipe. I decided not to make the icing. I thought tea cakes didn't need it. Icing would have really complimented these tea cakes.

3. The biggest reason is, these tea cakes weren't Mrs. Hooper tea cakes. Mrs. Hooper is a lady in my church in Georgia. For the past several years, she has made me tea cakes on my birthday and every major holiday (I love being a preacher's kid!). Now, when I visit, she always has tea cakes ready for me. I looooove her tea cakes. Unfortunately, so does my husband. When we first got married, he didn't know how good they were, and he's not a big sweet eater anyway. When I got my Mrs. Hooper tea cakes, they were all mine. All mine! However, that lasted only for a little bit, and now he's as big of a fan as I am, and I am forced to share.

Christy Jordan talks in the cookbook about how no one will ever cook as good as your momma. Well, I think that's how I feel about tea cakes. I have picked my favorite, and all others just taste...different.

When I moved to Maryland, Mrs. Hooper gave me her tea cake recipe. (She's just that nice!) Today I will share it with you.

{Mrs. Hooper's tea cakes}

3 1/2 cups of self rising flour
2 cups of sugar
1 cup of Crisco
1 stick of margarine
2 eggs
1 Tbsp. of vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Normally you would roll the dough out, cut cookies, and bake, but Mrs. Hooper's does it slightly differently. In her recipe, she says to make a small ball. She even drew how big the ball should be for me. She must know me. It's about the size of a quarter. She then places the ball on the cookie sheet and flattens them with a measuring cup. She didn't say how long to cook them, but I would say 10 minutes, or until brown. Enjoy!!!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Give Me Five Friday- {rules of facebook}

Shad has resisted joining facebook for a very long time now, but this week he gave in and followed the social networked masses. So today my five is for him.

{my five rules of facebook}

1. Don't write the mysterious status just to get attention. For example, "Steph is sad," or "Steph is excited." This is inevitably followed by the "What's wrong," comment by someone. I may be just be sad that I hit my toe, but when people see, "Steph is sad," they always think worst case scenario.

2. Tone is not typed so be aware of these signals. ALL CAPS IS LIKE SHOUTING. Use it sparingly or for something really important. "That's so funny:)" is very different from "That's so funny:(" "You're so crazy;)" is very different from "YOU'RE SOOOOOOOO CRAZY!!!" Always use j/k or just kiddin' when you use sarcasm. Sarcasm is dangerous on facebook. I have a friend that uses "hee hee" for his sarcasm, I think that's genius.

3. Be aware of what is public and what is private. If you write on someone's wall everyone sees it. If someone is friends with both of the people involved, the wall comment shows up in their newsfeed. If you post on the wall, make it positive, funny, or simple. If not send it in a message.

4. Now that Shad has a profile, I must be careful that I am logged in as myself. If I comment under Shad's name, that could result in some really awkward situations.

5. When you take a quiz on facebook, you don't always have to publish the results to your profile. There is usually a skip button somewhere when it says publish. I learned this the hard way when I took the "What type of hair do you have" quiz. The result was nerd hair...NERD HAIR! Now, I'm a proud nerd, but I don't want nerd hair. I thought I HAD to publish it to my profile, and had to endure the resulting jokes.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Blessing #26- Actors for a day

We taped the Goodwill of Delaware commercial on Monday, and we got to be actors for the day. I know "actors" is a stretch, but just appease me. Here are a few highlights and pictures of our day.

1. At one point, I had to somewhat yell, "Shad!" The first time I tried it, I said,
"Sha-y-ad!" That was definitely a "I am becoming my mother moment" for me. I always made fun of her ability to make a one syllable word, two syllables.

2. When they gave me my accessories for my makeover, they gave me my favorite brand of purse, Kathy Van Zealand!

3. When they started to make us over, we weren't picky about what they did to us. The hair stylist gave me a Snookie bump (mine was definitely cooler than Snookie's) and Shad a feau-hawk. It was so much fun, and I loved how it looked!

4. My absolute favorite moment of the day was when Shad held up a Wiggles dvd and excitedly yell, "The WiGgLeS!"

Taping this commercial will definitely be something we will always remember. Thank you so much to the Goodwill team and Film Brothers Productions for an unforgettable day.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Project Life: January 17 - 23

Week three of Project Life. My favorite picture this week is Thursday! If you want to see more Project Lifes, just click on the badge at the top of this post.

Wednesday, January 19 - This was the first day the snow had completely melted. 1. Brandon broke into his sandbox and pulled out all the toys. 2. He missed the snow and decided to throw mudballs instead. Not cute. Not cute...well, kind of cute.

Thursday, January 20 - I looooooooove this picture! There are so many captions I could put here, but I'll just take a guess at what Collin's thinking. "Hey, Mommy. Put down that camera and feed me!"

Friday, January 21 - My Aunt Ruthie (her name is Ruth, but I call her Ruthie) sent us a package with all kinds of treats. She sent me a couple of bags of pecans when my dad came up for Thanksgiving. I have already used all those pecans for Christmas cooking. So Aunt Ruthie sent me some more!!!

Saturday, January 22 - I had not gotten a picture of Shad in several days. This was his reaction when he found that out.

Sunday, January 23 - I walked by this shirt in Walmart and I could not resist it. My "Eligible Bachelor!"

Sunday, January 23 (again) - Shad normally tucks B into bed, but this night I did it. I told Brandon if he was really still, I would let Collin lay beside him during story time. B was so excited to have his brother there. It was too sweet!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Blessing #25- Barbque

On Saturdate with Southern Plate, I mentioned that my dad was a bbq connoisseur. Growing up, he took our family to so many bbq places that we became experts by default. I know the difference between South Carolina and Georgia bbq sauce. I can tell you what state a bowl of Brunswick stew came from just by looking at it.
After marrying into the family, Shad has even developed a love of bbq. That’s a long way from where he first started when he considered an Arby’s roast beef sandwich to be bbq.{blasphemy!}

I realize that not everyone had the same upbringing that I had. Some may see a rough bbq joint and be afraid to eat there. So to help, I (with the help of my expert dad) have developed the Piggo score. Just like the FICO score shows credit risk, the Piggo score show’s the risk of a bbq place not being good. Use it to find out if you should eat at a bbq restaurant.

The Piggo Score Test
1. If the name of the bbq place is one syllable (don‘t include the word bbq), give it 3 points.
If it’s two syllables, give it 2 points.
If it’s three syllables, give it 1 points.

2. If the name is in the possessive form, like Zeb’s or Huck’s, add 2 points. (Be nervous about any bbq cook that is afraid to put their name on their bbq.)

3. If the person the place is named after is no longer alive, add 2 points. (I know that sounds morbid, but that shows longevity.)

4. If you can see the interstate from the parking lot, subtract 1 point

5. If the parking lot is unpaved, add 1 point.

6. If most of the car tags in the parking lot are local tags. add 1 point.

7. If the sign has pigs on it, add 1 point.

8. If the sign is pink, add 1 point.

9. If this place is one of a kind, not a chain, add 1 point.

Atmosphere10. If the all the artwork on the walls is of pigs or the local college football team add 1 point.

11. If they sell their own t-shirts add 1 point.

12. If they only accept cash, add 1 point.

13. If the tv is showing Andy Griffeth episodes and or Nascar, add 1 point.

14. If the entire menu fits on the front of a piece of paper, add 1 point. (Good bbq places only stick to a few items.)

15. If the door to the bathroom is actually a door to the outside, add 1 point.

Food16. If there is loaf bread on the table add 1 points.

17. If that bread is Sunbeam bread add 1 point.

18. If they bring you a bag of plain potato chips with your meal add 1 point.

19. If there are potatoes in the Brunswick stew subtract 2 points (Unless you are in North Carolina or Alabama because that is considered normal there. )

20. If they give free refills on stew, add 1 point.

ResultsIf the piggo score is between 14 to 20 points, go on in! It may look rough, but the bbq will be delicious.

If the piggo score is between 7 to 13 points, proceed with caution. This restaurant is a gamble. The bbq might not be bad, but it won't be memorable.

If the piggo score is between 0 to 6 points RUN AWAY! It is probably a chain restaurant. BBQ is an art and cannot be mass produced. You are better off eating chicken nuggets with bbq sauce at McDonald's.

***My dad placed a condition on his helping me. If you know of any good bbq places, please leave them in the comments. He loves to know where good places are when he travels.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Saturdate with Southern Plate- {bbq sauce no. 5}

In case you don't know what Saturdate with Southern Plate is, you can check it out here.

Some people are art connoisseurs, others are wine connoisseurs, but my dad is a bbq connoisseur. I'm not exagerating. He is an expert. Sometime this week, I will blog more about that, but for now just trust me, he's a connoisseur of bbq.

Growing up in his house has made me a bit of a bbq snob. I know what I like and what tastes good. When I cook, the only bbq sauce I use is Strickland's sauce. Strick's sauce is only sold in the North Georgia area, and, unfortunately, I'm twelve hours from the nearest bottle. Everytime I go to Georgia, I smuggle several bottles back over the Maryland state line. When I'm cooking, I ration it out like liquid gold. I give Shad the evil eye when he uses too much on his sandwich.

Because of my bbq sauce shortage, I was excited to try this recipe. I assumed I would make the sauce and adjust it to how I like it. Surprisingly though, I love the recipe just like it is. This recipe is not on Southern Plate blog, but only in the book. It was the perfect combination of sweet and spicy. Next time I go to Georgia, I'm definitely bringing back bottles of Strick's sauce, but maybe I'll loosen up on the rationing now that I have a backup.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Give Me Five Friday- {Goodwill finds}

The week of Goodwill is coming to a close, but wait I've still got one more Goodwill post in me.

{five cool things I've gotten at Goodwill}

1. my green desk thing- I talked about that here

2. my plates- I LoVeD my set of dinner plates from Pier 1. Shad found another set of four of them with these awesome salad plates and matching bowls.

3. Shad's bowling ball bag- He uses this for his basketball clothes when he plays.

4. my canning jars- I got my first two jars at Goodwill!

5. my gold dress- This was my all time favorite Goodwill find! I loved this dress and it's amazing cape. I found ever chance I could to wear it. Black and white does not do it justice. It was this color. In this picture, we had to dress up like Hershey's kisses for spirit week. I was a Hershey's kiss with almonds.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Curse #7- The Wrong Box

Dear person who donated this coffeemaker to Goodwill,

First off, thank you for your donation. Your generosity helps me find great deals. Secondly, congratulations, I’m so happy that you got that great coffee maker for Christmas! However, could you do me one small favor. When you donate your old coffee maker to Goodwill, could you not put it in the box of your new coffeemaker.

I understand that you probably don’t have the old coffee maker‘s box, but you must understand how cruel it was to donate it in the new coffee maker’s box. As I was shopping at Goodwill, I saw your new coffee maker’s box. For about ten seconds, I felt like I had found the best deal ever.

Then I open your new coffee maker’s box to find your old coffee maker. The let down is terrible. Please understand, it’s not that your old coffee maker is bad, but after the let down, it doesn‘t seem nearly as good. If you must put the new item in the old box could you please write on the side of the box, “STEPHANIE, DON“T GET EXCITED. THIS ISN”T IT!“ Thank you for your time. May you get many new presents, and keep those donations coming!

Stephanie, Loyal Goodwillian

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Blessing #24- Goodwill Outlet

After our Goodwill audition, Shad and I went to the Goodwill outlet that was next door. Doesn't the Goodwill OUTLET sound like a paradox, as if Goodwill wasn't cheap enough, they have an outlet too. However, it does exist. I was able to get so many good deals for only $12! Decorative pumpkins, travel mugs, an wooden activity center for Collin (I was very excited about the abacus on the side), a frame, an owl (my favorite!), a vase, a big muffin pan, and a book for Brandon. We also got Shad a case for his phone, but I didn't take a picture of it.

Other than the owl, my favorite find was this frame. I have been looking for a frame with three openings ever since I got the J,O, and Y pictures from Craftily Ever After. You can find them here.

I love that it has the glass background. I knew exactly what I wanted to do as soon as I saw it. I love burlap and black together. The frame, pictures, and burlap all cost me about $4.

Linking up to Junkin'Finds Friday.

Project Life- January 10 - 16

Week two of Project Life 2011! Thanks to a fellow Project Lifer, I decided to try the digital version of Project Life. I loved it and will definitely use it. If you want to see other Project Lifes just click on the badge up top.

Tuesday, January 11- Tigger! Put your tongue back in your mouth.

Wednesday, January 12- Snow day!

Thursday, January 13- Brandon decided to put on a concert for us before he went to bed.

Friday, January 14- Goodwill of Delaware audition!!!

Saturday, January 15- Collin doesn't smile much, but when he does our entire house stops (even Brandon) to watch him.

Saturday, January 17- B wanted a snack and announced that he wanted peanut butter crackers with chocolate chips. I had to take a picture of the proud chef with his "recipe."

Sunday, January 16- Because I grew up in warm Georgia, this frozen river just amazes me.