Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Pioneering Passion

She may not be the first to show up on the Network channel, but she was one of the first to show up on my side bar. PIONEER Woman, aka Ree Drummond, has had my attention for nearly six years. I first fell in love with her website, then my emotions were captured by her home, her photography, her simple way of life, her dog Charlie, and definitely her passion for cooking. She is so country. I was country when I fell in love with her, well I felt like it since I was situated in a town that barely existed on a map, for nearly 7 years. I could relate to her distance from a functioning town, her feeling of loneliness (which is not necessarily negative) out on the ranch, and her absolute love of gardening/cooking/ and needing to connect with those around her via way of her computer. I have created many of her recipes such as the Sleeping in Omelette, Restaurant Potatoes, and Cowboy Breakfast Burritos. Everything I have created, with her step by step instructions, has been magical and delicious. Now I get to spend a few minutes of my mornings watching her living life on the farm from my cozy front room. Fireplace on, Ree on Food Network, coffee in hand, kids gone to school, wrapped in my favorite blankets is the perfect way to start my mornings. I have been in a definite LOW with cooking. My husband has taken over the kitchen, and has proved to be every bit of a genius in the kitchen as I once was. I was grateful and still am, but unsettled. I have lost several passions, but I think they (the missing passions) are key to my happiness. Passion. I need to PIONEER my passions, light the flames, and knock some socks of MY audience. Ree is preparing my starting line. She is fueling me with the desire to provide warmth, nourishment, and love to my family. Work takes it away from me, but I want to swoop back in after 7 days of work, and claim it. Claim my kitchen, claim my blogging, claim my passions. There is more to this girl than just 7 days....I just need to PIONEER my energy, steal her wonderful recipes (I am not, nor will ever be the one to PIONEER my owns recipes-that's my wonderful husband's talent), and find myself again. Watching her gentle, simple, kindhearted life gets me.

I started with our St Patrick's Day feast. I made the traditional meal of Cabbage, Corned Beef, and Mashed Potatoes. My hubs gave the best idea of using the pretzel buns and Gouda Cheese I purchased, to make a delicious Corned Beef Sandwich. It was amazing!!! I topped my bun with the beef, cabbage, and a nice smearing of condiments, horseradish and mustard. The cheese was enough to put everything over the top delicious. Passion was in my dinner! I didn't care what everyone thought, even though I asked a million times, because I was satisfied. The dinner started with Trivia questions about the history of the holiday, then prizes, food, beer, and for dessert my daughter cleaned the kitchen. The night was perfect. I packed up the left overs, the St Paddy's day Tie, and a beer and dropped it off for my dad. He loved it. We completed the Holiday with a family movie Night. Something Irish of course. "The Quiet Man."  with John Wayne and the spunky O'Hara made for the perfect end to our Irish Night.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Valerie, 16 Years Old

Valerie turned 16 over the weekend. We let her have a friend stay overnight, spent the day Sunday constructing her cake, celebrated with family at Red Robin, and then let her stay home on Monday to spend the day with just Mark and I. We are so proud of the person she has become, and who she plans to be. In recent days she has had to make some tough choices about school, careers, classes, and friends. Instead of working it through with us she came to some very sound decisions and presented us with the final thought after she had contemplated it for nearly a week. I am part proud, part sad. Proud that she has the mindset to work through all these details alone and with such intelligence, and sad because she is growing up and needing her "mommy" less and less. I love her and am excited for her future. She is the best and brightest little star. Can't wait till she lights up the whole world! I know this year is going to be life changing for her. I see a Driver's License in her future, a car, and possibly more excitement in the way of the opposite gender. We should bone up on our Vietnamese I'm told! (Ha ha ha). Happy Birthday Valerie! I hope this year brings you every bit of happiness that you bring us!!!

Charlie, 7 years Old

It took me forever to upload this to Blogger. Long story short, I will never use Mark's IPad to do these again. I love doing these video's every year because it shows where the kids are at in their development, how they view themselves, and captures life according to their age. Enjoy watching little Miss Princess W-O-O the camera while answering some tough questions about her life. Introducing her first ever birthday questionnaire.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Her Many Faces

And I love them A-L-L!

February Favorites

It's over. So. Fast. We had a packed month with Mark working Monday/Wednesday/Saturday. His next quarter will be more flexible with just online and one Saturday course, plus his other online teaching courses. February was packed with Birthday celebrations, hanging out with family, mid winter break, and sleepovers. I'm glad it's over because that means we are getting closer to Spring, planting, and warm weather. Although today looks great!!!

Ethan turned 14! They grow up too fast. He told me the other day he was possibly changing his mind on his career choice. He said that maybe he would like to teach. I can see him doing that, he would be good at it too. For his birthday he got tickets to the Sounders game yesterday, tickets to play football golf, $$ for Tiffany Skating rink, and three shirts (two were Sounders shits). He loved the surprise party we had for him at Grandma Wegley's.