Monday, August 31, 2009

Your Life Your Blog

your life your blog

Okay, so Sarah has a fun carnival over at her Real Life blog - random great posts from throughout the week. Your Life Your Blog is an awesome way to catch some posts you might otherwise miss. Love that idea!

Click the button above and head on over there.

I submitted Asking For a Gift from last week. Last week was such a mix of good and bad for me. The beautiful part - God is always good. Now, that I can count on!

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Are you a collector of something?

I've never been much of a collector myself.  Unless, of course, you count my laundry.  I collect plenty of that!

I usually get bored with what I'm collecting and then move on to something else.   I have a lot of the beginnings of collections but not a complete set of anything.  Even my china, after being married for 12 years, is nowhere near being complete.  

I guess I have accumulated quite a bit of FiestaWare, but I use those as my every day dishes.   I have most of it in white, which is pretty rare now, my favorite red and some green.   I pick up a new piece here and there and if I see an vintage piece that matches my stuff and is reasonably priced, I usually try to get it. 

I also like to collect some cut glassware and I am particularly fond of an old piece.    It's actually a pretty inexpensive thing to collect.  I just don't have the room for much more of it.  One of my good friends likes to buy me this as gifts and I always think of her when I use those pieces.

I've realized that whatever I collect, I need it to be useful.   You will most likely not find me collecting figurines of some sort.  They are usually beautiful and lovely and I enjoy getting them as gifts, but it's not something I would actively collect.

I guess the thought of someone having to clean out my house, full of something like owl figurines, when I die is enough to scare me out of collecting too much of anything.   Plus, I'm not fond of clutter.  I wouldn't want a collection to become the focal point of my home.

So, all of this talk about collections gets me thinking.  Which is normally dangerous in itself.

Did you ever notice how some people collect bad stuff?

I mean, they collect the bad experiences that happen in their life and even in the lives of others.   Then they clutter up their own life with all this bad stuff.  Actually, they even carry it around with them and it certainly becomes the focal point in their life.   

It's like if they let go of their collection of bad stuff something even worse might happen.   They become used to seeing this collection of bad all around them and they keep adding to it.    They are the ones, who when you share a fear about one thing or another, always have a bad story to tell you that relates.  I especially love this when it comes to my children.  For instance, I might express a concern about my child riding the bus and this person has about 5 or 6 terrible bus accident stories to tell me.  Um yeah, thanks for sharing.

They tell you the stories with the best of intentions but it really just seems to make them feel better. 

They are always quick to listen to the most wretched events of your life but not so interested in the amazing story of how you lost 10 pounds or how you just won $100 in the state lottery. 

Like the darkness that is afraid of the light.

Who knows what might happen if they just laid that collection down?  Let it go.  Let the light in.   It might be a whole new uncluttered life. 

It reminds me of a story I watched on one of those news shows of a woman who suffered from the mental illness, Hoarding.  She had so much stuff in her house she could barely move and it even covered her windows.  When her family finally intervened and came in to clean her house out, the sunshine actually came in through the windows for the first time in years.  

Can you imagine?   I can't even bear to have my blinds closed in my home.

I continued to watch as this woman just broke down when the light came through her windows.  It was so hard for her to let go of everything she'd collected.  But for the first time in years, she felt as if some weight had been lifted.  She felt free of all of this STUFF she had collected. 

Is there someone in your life that you could encourage today?  Just shine a little light on?   Maybe they just need a little help letting go of their stuff.  

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Apple Breakfast Bars

A friend passed this recipe along to me a while back.   I pulled it out because I needed something quick and easy to eat on the mornings I have to run out of the house early.   I thought my kids would love it - they didn't.   My kids don't like dried fruit very much and these have dates in them.   Hubby loved it, though and they are the perfect answer for what I needed. 

So, I'm sharing it with you.  Maybe your kids will love them!  And, look Ma, no oil, sugar or butter in these!

Apple Breakfast Bars

  • 1 1/2 cup quick rolled oats (you can use regular rolled oats but the texture will be different - see note below)
  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2/3 cup dates, chopped
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/4 cup orange juice or fresh juice from an orange
  • 1 1/2 cups raw apples, shredded

Combine all ingredients.  Let stand 10 minutes.  Press mixture into an 8x8 baking dish. I did rub a little butter on the pan so they would not stick.  Bake at 375F degrees until lightly browned., about 25 minutes.   Regular oats might take a little longer to cook.   Loosen with spatula and cut into bars while still warm.  They are tasty warm but I enjoyed them the next day, cooled, also.

Shredding apples on my Saladmaster machine

All Mixed up
Pressed into the 8x8 baking dish


I promise they taste better than they look.  Hubby and I ate them in 2 days.

A word about oats:  What is the difference between Quick, Rolled, Steel cut?
Very simply -   The way they are cut.
So, beginning with steel cut you are getting a less processed  oat.  From what I've read, that doesn't necessarily mean the quick are still not a healthy option.  They are still oats - just cut more finely.  Rolled and quick oats are quickly steamed during processing so that they cook faster.

With each type of oats the consistency is different.    We eat the regular rolled oats around here.  I use the quick to bake with as it seems to create a less-chewy consistency that my kids will eat.  We never eat the instant packaged oatmeal - they are loaded with sugar and salt.   I used to make a homemade "instant oatmeal" but my kids prefer the regular oats.   

The nutritional content as far as calories, fiber and protein are exactly the same in all of them which leads me to think that the vitamins are probably close to the same even though the rolled and quick go through a little more processing.  

It's probably a Good, Better, Best situation.  Good being quick, better being regular rolled, best being steel-cut as they are likely the most nutrient-dense.    All in all, though - I think it's up to you and if you have any of the three in your family's diet you are doing great.   Again, this is only my opinion and my experience.   You can Google steel cut vs. rolled. vs.quick oats and find a plethora of opinions on the matter.

Submitted to Tasty Tuesday at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam  

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Saturday, August 29, 2009

These Aren't Your Momma's Headshots

My very good friend, Chris, took some headshots of me last night.  She posted a couple on her photography blog.  Click HERE to see them.   I'm pretty in love with that first one!  

"These aren't your momma's headshots!"  says Chris.  
So true.  

Chris and Leah -  are both incredibly talented and amazing women that just happen to be my friends.  I really do know the most amazing women, y'all.

I love them, I love their photography and I would love for you to check their site.

If you live in the Raleigh Durham area or in NC at all, you should have these ladies do your photos.  They just finished a Tween Model Search event and wow!  Great shots.  Edgy.  Fun.  Cool.  Good.  Modern.  Inspired - all words that easily describe their style. 

Leah did my Christmas card shots.  Remember, those?  Loved them.

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Linked Up

Good Saturday Morning to you!   Hot one - again - here in NC.  How about you?  Is it cooling down where you live? 

Okay, so some great links today.   I posted this about packing a healthy school lunch that your kids will eat and then found some other really great posts about school lunches.  I'm putting them all here for you today.

In other links, here are three ways I stay connected to what is going on in the outside world.

Smart Brief  - These articles are industry specific.  You pick what you want to read about and you get an email each day with a list of articles pertaining to that industry.  ie: I like to stay on top of social media news and each day I receive an email with brief snippits of what is happening in that industry.  You can get one on Aviation and Aerospace if you want.   Or about the happenings in the United Nations which I am sure is confusing stimulating stuff. 

Worthington Wire  - Everything You Need to Stay in the Know.  Created by Allison Worthington - mom, blogger, editor and so much more.  One page, one headline per topic.  You simply click on what you want to read more of.   Like the Drudge Report for Chicks as she calls it.    

Alltop - Your Online Magazine Rack.  Let's you go in and pick the topics you are most interested in and then feeds those to your "magazine" 24/7.  This is a great way to stay on top of some super blogs out there.  I receive new articles from women's health, social media and The Economist to parenting and fashion. 

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Friday, August 28, 2009

Cool Moms and Webcams

This has been a very cool week for me in the technological sense.

Wednesday, I had a meeting with a friend who is creating a really great website, that I can't tell you about yet, but he wants me to be one of many consultants as they wrap up and roll out the project.  Just to look at it and tell him my opinions.  Why?  Because I get social media.   Okay, that was easy. 

Then yesterday, I had the awesome opportunity, thanks to Sarah at Real Life,  to go to my very first blogger mom mixer event.   A special thanks also to  Logitech and BSM Media and Mom Select for sponsoring it. 

So here is what was really awesome about this mixer.
First and foremost, we had a tasty lunch.  Because it is always about the food, isn't it?

Then we got to play with  a very cool webcam by Logitech.

I would love to talk more about this camera here on Dandelion Dayz but because of my agreement with BlogHer ads (the ones in my sidebar) I need to talk about it over on my review blog, Just Dandy Reviews,  Please go and check out the review  AND receive a coupon code AND FREE SHIPPING if you would like to order one for yourself.   

Mostly though, the best part of the mixer was meeting some really cool women.  Women that blog and run websites and use social media - just like me.  Well, not just like me - sooooo much better than me!  Women that are moms, and wives and are trying to juggle life - just like me.

Women like Maria Bailey of  MomTalkRadio who brought us all together in the first place, Molly of Go Mom Inc.,  Sarah of Real Life , Jen at One Mom's World and CarolinaMama were just a few of the women that I met and instantly fell in love with.  Seriously, I feel like I've been friends with Sarah for years.  We could have probably talked for hours.  She is who she is online - real!   

Not sure what was happening with my hair yesterday (not good) but isn't Sarah so beautiful?  
She has one megawatt smile!

My favorite part about blogging has always been the community.   Many Most of my friends and family do not understand my blogging and tweeting.  Most barely get past Facebook.   Some even think that social media is replacing face to face contact.  I disagree.  I think that social media has allowed me to make new friends that I would have never met otherwise, re-connect with long lost friends and stay better connected with those I see never get to see on a regular basis.

So, it was good to meet some women that I've only known online.  Many of them local and in some even in my circles of peeps. 

I certainly look forward to more mom mixers and getting to know more bloggers. 

Now, please go check out the webcam review.  You will love it!   Leave me a comment to let me know what you think. 

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Asking For A Gift

From my post yesterday you might have been able to sense that I had a conflict of sorts with someone.

No, it wasn't you - don't worry. 

It's family.  It's always family, is it not?

So, this morning as I was walking, I was thinking to myself that this person who is going on acting like we never even had this conflict should apologize to me.     They definitely owe me an apology. 

Then I would forgive this person.  (saying this with my chest all puffed out)

Because for me, when a person asks for forgiveness, it's very easy for me to fall into a puddle and forgive them.  I'm just a softie like that.

Except that is not what forgiveness is really all about is it?

Asking for forgiveness is really like asking for a gift, isn't it?  And we don't normally ask people for gifts.

But to forgive without them asking for my forgiveness?

It's just hard to do.  

Because now were just messing with my pride here. (did someone say pride?)

Jesus tells his disciples, when they ask how many times to forgive someone, that they should forgive them over and over.    Just as God forgives us over and over.

Did you ever notice that the things Jesus asks us to do are sometimes really hard?  But always what's best for us. 

I know that the person that hurt me, truly loves me and has the best of intentions for me.  I also know that apologizing is difficult and that it would be a great gift for me to surrender my anger so we could move on.  And because this is not the the first time it's happened, I know that eventually, we will talk about it.   I know that I would also feel so incredibly loved if someone did the same for me. 

So, that's where I am.  I doubt that I will air any more of this on the blog but I certainly appreciate you letting me work it out here.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

The Elephant In the Room

I'm always intrigued by a person who can just ignore the proverbial "elephant in the room."   You know how when something pretty significant has happened between you and a person and then the next time you see them you just act like it never happened.

Except it did happen. 

And it was never resolved.

And all these feelings are still quietly floating around.  

I have a hard time with that.

Do you think people do this because they are afraid of confrontation?  Or they are afraid if they talk about it or face something messy then it will somehow hurt them more?  Maybe they really feel like they have dealt with it.  I wonder if they are hoping it will just go away.  That would be nice.

Except that it seldom goes away.  Time does not rewind.   Then later when you least expect it, "the elephant" that you tried so hard to ignore is running around crashing into things and destroying everything in it's path. 

I think it runs through generations.   It starts with one big thing in a family and the parents choose to ignore it.  They teach the child that is how to deal with things and then that child becomes an adult and does the same thing in his or her own relationships.  

Just my thoughts for today.  What do you think?

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Critters Where They Should Not Be

Squirrels in the bird feeder.
Deer in my back yard.
Dog on the kitchen table.
Critters where they should not be!

 Who, me?

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Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Packing a Healthy Lunch Your Kids Will Eat - WFMW

Whenever I talk about eating healthier and feeding my kids healthy food, I often get the same question.

What do you feed your kids for lunch?

I actually have this very same issue.  Trying to stay away from packaged foods is nearly impossible with the lunch situation.   I have the hardest time packing a healthy lunch that my kids will actually eat.  I suspect many of you do also. 

For one thing, my kids want what everyone else is eating.   They really don't want to bring something strange to school for lunch.   I go to lunch with my kids a lot and I see what happens to the foods that parents send that the kids are too embarrassed to pull out of their lunchbox.    And it usually ends up in the trash.

I applaud any parent's effort to send a nutritious lunch to school and I think sending the alternative is, well, not such a good alternative.

I would love to hear from you on this topic. I need new ideas! 

In the meantime, here has what I've been doing so far this year.

Here are non-negotiables for me:
  • Water always. 
  • 100% juice boxes only.
  • Whole grain bread without High Fructose Corn Syrup.  There are about two brands out there in your mainstream grocery store.  Trader Joes and Whole Foods do carry only this type of bread but I choose not to spend $4 on a loaf of bread.  Just sayin'.   I also use Naan bread, pita bread and whole wheat tortilla shells sometimes. 
Let's talk about the sandwich...
I saw this sweet little Kindergarten boy at lunch the other day with a tuna salad sandwich.  Five year old kids at the table were already saying ewwww!  Apparently, it starts early.   Thankfully, he did not seem bothered by it at all - he was chowing it down. 
  • My children do not love deli meat so I only pack a deli sandwich a couple times a week.  I try making chicken salad which my daughter loves but my son hates.  I try to buy whole sliced turkey or chicken and give them the things that they love like Bologna and Salami only on occasion. 
  • My kids dislike mayo, so we use mustard.  
  • lettuce and tomato add a boost to the sandwich.  
  • Whole cheese slices - cheddar, mont-jack, provolone.
  • I only use all-natural peanut butter - my kids have never known the difference.  And only all fruit jams or reduced sugar jelly.   Smucker's reduced sugar (not sugar-free) jelly has less sugar in it than many all fruit jams.  Go figure. 
Snacks and sides:
  • They want snack chips.  So, I try to pack the lesser of the evils.  I will pack real potato chips which, although they are fried, they do not have hydrogenated oils in them.  I also pack pretzels a lot and tortilla chips.   Doritos, Cheetos, Cheez-its and the likes are a rare treat as most of them have hydrogenated oils in them.  
  • I noticed a girl in my son's class that had homemade waffles for her snack.  No butter or syrup - just the waffles - she ate them up and was so excited!   We love the whole wheat waffles from Trader Joes or Vans waffles that you can find at your grocery store- those might be a good option. 
  • Air-popped popcorn with sea salt for a snack.
  • I send whole cheese that I slice from the block.  My kids seem to like this better than cheese sticks.
  • Nuts - my kids will eat almonds and cashews.  I realize many kids won't.  You could make up your own trail mix and send that.  My kids don't like dried fruit of any kind - I guess I've spoiled them with too much fresh!  Here is an entire article from Family Fun about making your own trail mix.

Other things I pack.

  • Red, yellow, orange, green bell peppers with hummus.  My kids love vegetables so I am lucky in this regard. 
  • Raw broccoli, grape tomatoes, peeled carrots, cukes, and celery are always a hit with them.
  • Cooked and chilled edamame.
  • Pickles - not a fresh veggie but they love them.
  • Both of my kids will eat a salad if I pack it in their lunch, so once a week, I do that.
  • I also bought the Thermos containers and send leftover spaghetti, soup or mac & cheese.
  • I have these little plastic containers from Tupperware called Midgets that I send with dips like hummus and peanut butter.  I'm working on a homemade Ranch Dressing - any recipes out there?   Dips seem to make my kids eat just about anything! 


  • Dessert - I try to send homemade goodies if I have them.  
  • Fruit salad or fresh fruit every single day.
  • Yogurt 
  • I will pack cookies. They are kids.  Kids love cookies.  I love cookies.  Bonus if they are homemade.  
I talk to my kids a lot about making good food choices.  I want them to want to eat healthy even though they see other kids eating things that are not so good for them.  I try to teach them about packaging and marketing and how that is not what we should look for in food.   I also allow them treats so they don't feel they are missing out on something.  Most days I think they get it.

So, that is about all I've come up with!  Your turn - what do you pack for your kids lunches?

*updated:  found this great post that pretty much covers mine and then some - wanted to share it with you because there are some awesome ideas here. 
Packing a Lunch: Healthy Food to Go at Kitchen Stewardship

**More updates:  Another great one over at Musings of a Housewife - School Lunches - be sure to check out the comments, too. 

For more Works For me Wednesday ideas, head on over to We are THAT Family.  

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Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Triangle TRACKS Blog Carnival Contest

Local social networking and resource website for parents, Triangle TRACKS, is having a bloggy carnival contest.

I entered my Where My Heart Rides Away post.   

Sending my youngest to Kindergarten was difficult for me.  It was, surprisingly, much harder than I thought it would be.  I think it is, or was,  for some of you, too.  Others, not so much.  I'd love to know your thoughts on the subject.

Here is how you can help me win!   I've added a discussion to the end of the post above.  Just click on the link above or HERE and leave me a comment in the comments section.  If you are not signed up to leave comments, you can always sign in as anonymous and leave your name at the end of the comment.    Do not be afraid of the comments dear friends - it only takes a minute.     

Also, if you are not a member of Triangle or Charlotte TRACKS, please consider becoming one!  They are local growing social networks of parents and the sites are completely dedicated to subjects that involve your children.  Activities, school news, trends, travel, food and so much more! 

Join here:
Triangle TRACKS
Charlotte TRACKS

As always - THANK YOU! 
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My Rollercoaster Ride with Being Healthy

There was once a time in my life where I could honestly say that I had not eaten fast food of any kind for about 3 years.  No chicken nuggets, no french fries, no cheeseburgers that came from a restaurant with a drive-thru.

I was a serious "health nut" as they say.
Organic - check.
No processed foods - check.
Triple Osmosis filtered water - check.
I even had a filter in my shower to remove whatever yuckiness could go into my body through the city water.   I used the stone crystal for deodorant, herbal wrap detoxes, all natural colon cleanses, I was completely dairy free for awhile, I can skim the labels of food to find yucky additives in seconds flat - the list goes on, y'all.   

I hadn't tasted a Big hamburger, that begins with an M and ends with a C, in about 5 years.  Maybe more.

Then I got pregnant with my first child.

The cravings I had were unbelievable.  I used it as a license to eat whatever I wanted. 

Here I was in a 12 week natural childbirth class with a nutrition plan that was perfectly laid out to feed me and my baby into optimal health.   Yes, I had my first child without one single drug - I told you, I was a nut.   Anyway, I was not only eating everything on that plan which was A LOT of good whole foods, but I was suddenly eating every piece of junk food I could get my hands on.   

Hubby loves to tell the story of when I was about 7 months pregnant and  he walked into the office where we worked together -  the office where we distribute a line of products designed to help people eat healthier - to find me eating a Big hamburger, that begins with an M and ends with a C, large fry and large coke.

He asked me,"Is that what I think it is?" 
"Yes, it is." 
"Can I have a bite?" 
"Don't even think about it."
And so began a new love affair with fast food.   I feel it only fair to tell you that I gained...get ready for it...80 pounds during my first pregnancy.  80. Pounds.  It took me over a year to lose that weight.

Losing it, of course, included not eating any more fast food.   I also ended up with Ulcerative Colitis.  I don't know what to attribute this to other than my eating habits taking a nose dive during the pregnancy. 

Now fast forward to having two kids and being a busy mom.    Let's face it, getting fast food is often just easier.  The kids are hungry and time is short.   Over the last few years, I have fed myself and my kids fast food more than I would like to think.

So here I am the last couple years, cooking pretty healthy at home but often running through a drive-thru with my kids. I even allowed some processed foods to come into my home because they BEG me at the store.  I feel like I've been sending them a mixed message. 

So, the time has come for a change...again.   For one, it's really not within my new budget to spend money on food that is anything but nutritionally sound.   Secondly, my health and my family's health is just that important.

Am I completely finished feeding my kids fast food?  Well, no.  I'd like to be but they still ask for it and sometimes it just is the easier option.  I would say that rarely is more like it.   And we try to make better choices about what kind of fast food we eat.   It is not all created equal. 

What I learned from this is that eating healthy is a habit.  It starts with one good choice and leads to another good choice.  And another and so on until eating healthy is just part of who you are.

The same goes for eating unhealthy.  It starts with one bad choice (I was pregnant for crying out loud - who can blame a pregnant woman?!?) and leads to another bad choice.  And another and so on until eating unhealthy is just part of who you are.

The crazy thing is that eating unhealthy is a lot easier of a habit to get into than eating healthy.  The sugar in processed foods is like a drug to our body.  I once had a holistic nutritionist tell me that she felt sugar was a worse addiction than heroin.   Since I have never been a heroin user, I just can't fairly say.    But if she is right then it would go to prove why it is so hard to get off of processed and fast foods.  We become addicted to them.   And like any addiction, it damages our body.  Luckily, we have amazing cells that can rebuild themselves quickly just by eating healthy again.  Whew!

So, yeah - I'm on the wagon again.  Going back to some of my better habits and trying to eat healthier.  Picking up some tips from websites and bloggers and reading up on some current health issues.  Back to the basics, ya know?  Since I've been down this road before, I really feel like I can recognize a fad or a trend in health.  And letmetellyou - there are many. 

I have one final word of advice about nutrition that I've gathered in my rollercoaster ride of healthy/not so healthy eating.  Moderation is absolutely the key.   Changing your eating habits overnight will most likely set you up for failure.  But eventually, what you think you could never live without will not even taste good to you anymore.  So, take it slowly and savor the new choices you are making.

Okay, that is all.  Now where is that chocolate...dark in it's purest form, of course.  ;)

*I must put this disclaimer on here that I am not a doctor or a nutritionist and you should always follow your own doctor's orders or make educated decisions about your own health.  Anything stated here are simply my own experiences and opinions.
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Monday, August 24, 2009

"Camping Out"

I've never been camping.  Unless you count the time I camped in the back of my parents station wagon with my two brothers while we drove from Missouri to Arizona.    Oh, I guess there was that time I went with a friend and his family in their pop-up camper.    But an actual "sleep in a tent and cook my food by a fire" kind of camping?  Never. 

My husband and daughter started camping last year with their Indian Princess tribe and to be prepared for those trips, he bought a tent, blow up mattress and sleeping bags.   Now he wants to take the whole family for a camping trip.  Bless his heart.  Does he not remember who he married?  Alas, he ignores forgets this and is determined to take a camping trip.
A camping trip that does not include reservations at the Hilton.
However, we first felt it necessary to practice before we plan this "big trip." 
Because this family is used to staying at the Hilton.  Or the Comfort Inn, anyway. 
We are, by nature, not the camping type.
So, we decided to "camp" in our backyard.   We have a pretty rustic backyard with woods behind us and a big open field on the side of our yard.
Who needs a campground?  We saw deer in the field behind our house, squirrel scampering around and little frogs on the patio.  Oh, and plenty of mosquitos.  Plenty of those things around. 
So here are some pics from the weekend.
Here they are putting up the tent.  Oh look!  There's Spiderman all ready to help!
I love this next picture because if you look really close in the background you will see B on the swing and Elmo watching.    I'm behind the camera and not sure where Spidey went - so it looks like Dad is doing all the work!   Poor Dad.
Here is my addition.  Y'all, It.Is.August.  Need I say more? 
All Ready!
Buddy was the only one who found his spot, curled in and settled in for the night.  Elmo barked at EHVAARYYY SINGLETHINGTHATMOVEDINTHENIGHT.  Seriously, that dog needs to learn some camping manners before we take him to any respectable campground.   His barking woke the kids and then they remembered that they were hot...because y'all, It.Is.August...And we were tent in our backyard.  Behind our house that has wonderful cool AC cranking through it.
Finally, about 2:30 in the morning, I guess we all had enough.  It just took one wimper from Bubby for all of us to suggest we should spend the rest of the night in our cozy beds.     We headed inside and determined we might need a bit more practice before heading out on a real camping trip. 
All in all, it was fun.  A great family time and I can honestly say, that I would be very open to camping.  In a campground.  Where there are bathrooms and showers close by.  And security.   I'm just sayin'.

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Sunday, August 23, 2009

Sunday Word - Insert Name Here

Loving this passage today.

Deuteronomy 32:10-11 (NIV)

 10 In a desert land he found him,
       in a barren and howling waste.
       He shielded him and cared for him;
       he guarded him as the apple of his eye,
 11 like an eagle that stirs up its nest
       and hovers over its young,
       that spreads its wings to catch them
       and carries them on its pinions. 
 I journal a lot about what is going on in my life.  Not only here.  I have a  journal, with actual paper in it, where I record some more intimate stuff.   Often I will look back on that journal and reflect on an entry that I wrote during an intense or painful time.   I love to read what scriptures I was led to read during that time.   Yesterday,  I was looking back at what I wrote about year ago and found the scripture above recorded.  I thought at the time it applied to someone else in my life.  Looking back now, I realize that the scripture also applied to me.   It always does.  

 I pulled some words from above and filled in my name.  Now, you try  - fill in your name where mine is. 

He found Janel.
He shielded Janel.
He cared for Janel.
He guarded Janel.
Janel is the apple of his eye. - love that
He hovers over Janel.
He catches Janel.
He carries Janel.

Comforting, eh?

Saturday, August 22, 2009

20,000 visitors to Dandelion Dayz! Wow!

Wow! My sitemeter just hit 20,000 visitors today!

For a little baby blogger like me, that is super cool!


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Register to win $50 worth of Free food from Frigidaire.

Boycott against Whole Foods is RIDICULOUS! (in my opinion) Read about it at USA Today and read John Mackey's statement at the Wall Street Journal.

Social Media working better than regular media? Gap dumps TV ads for Facebook campaign - read about it on SmartBrief and read about Twitter formalizing the re-tweet.

Healthy Nails and Skin on Chic Critique

When Worlds Collide at Fill My Cup

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Friday, August 21, 2009

Home Pedicures

I'm posting about home pedicures over at Chic Critique today - head on over there and check it out. Save money and have pretty toes!

And yes, you can do it - it's easy!

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Thursday, August 20, 2009

Flowers Make Me Happy

I just realized that I haven't shown many photos of my garden this year. We have had so much rain and then extreme heat that it's been a weird year for my for my plants. I've enjoyed the garden in my back yard so much. The front? Not so much. The early spring brought amazing blooms but the summer has been hard on it since then. I just don't know if it's the soil or the way the sun hits the yard or the stars being aligned just so - whatever, it's a bit frustrating.

Usually, my container plants are rocking by this time, too but this year they have been very sickly looking. Like I said, weird year for my plants.

Anyway, these are a few of what is working - let's keep our focus there, eh?

"Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive, Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive" la la la....humming....

This post is also linked up in the blog carnival A Thousand Words Thursday.
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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Her Own Style - WW

That's my girl. She's got a lot going on here, but this is what she put together for her first day of third grade. I love it. I love her.

Excuse the watermark on her forehead - I had some trouble editing!

For More Wordless Wednesday go to 5 Minutes for Mom

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Kitchen Tools I cannot live without

What I Learned This Week is that there are several tools in my kitchen that I could not live without. Well, I could live but, you know, it wouldn't be as fun to cook without them. Or as easy.

As I was cooking dinner the other night I pulled out several tools in my kitchen.

With each one, I thought to myself, "I love this thing. How would I cook without it?"

First and foremost, my cookware.

Now before we go any further...

Yes, we sell the stuff. We have sold Saladmaster for almost 15 years. It is a way of life for us in more ways than one. I'm not trying to sell you - believe me, you have to see it to understand it. And if you saw it in action, you would most likely want it. But I would be remiss if I didn't share my feelings with you about cookware. I believe that while the type of food we put in our bodies is important, how we cook it and what we cook it in, is equally important.

So, moving right along.

My cookware - it is, without a doubt, the finest thing I own and saves my life in the kitchen every night. My most favorite piece is my electric skillet. I seldom use my oven to cook a casserole because of this thing. Isn't it beautiful?

My food processor. No, not my fancy electric one. I do appreciate that for specific cooking tasks but this is my Saladmaster food processor and I use it almost every single day. It's design is as old as the hills and that is just because it works. It cleans up in a jiffy and breaks down to store easily

Okay now on to some things we don't actually sell.

Pampered Chef food chopper. I love my food processor but sometimes I just need this to chop nuts or onions or celery really fine. Plus, it helps me get aggression out!

My OXO carrot peeler. Hands down, it is the best carrot peeler in the land. The End.
Oh, and if you go to their site right now you can register to win $10,000 in kitchen products!

My Bunn coffee maker. Now before I hear from the real coffee enthusiasts out there who say coffee should brew slowly, let me tell you - I love this thing. It is my second one. A full pot of coffee in about 3 minutes and my coffee tastes just fine, thankyouverymuch. 'Nuff said. Amen.

My KitchenAide Mixer. I did not know how much I would really love this until I got it as a gift from Hubby. It saves my life during the holidays with baking. I don't love to bake and much of the reason is the mixing. Love the color - mine is red. Love the attachments. Love what it does. Here is a way you can buy a refurbished one if you can't swing a new one.

Okay, so tell me what you can't live without in your kitchen?

For more What I Learned This Week hop on over to Musings of A Housewife.

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