Monday, March 29, 2010


This time worse...

Saturday night I went to bed feeling a little puny and had heart burn really bad so I took some pepto and tried to go to sleep.  It was about midnight when Artie got up, said he did not feel that well and headed to the powder room.  I said "Uh-Oh, neither do I"  The second I got it came.  It was an awful night!  We are not sure if it was food poisoning (because it happened to both of us at the same time) or a stomach virus.  We were both so sick that Artie retreated to the basement so we would not have to hear each other and both have quick access to a bathroom.  Man we are glad it is over now but it was rough!  So Artie stayed home today to make sure he was feeling 100% before going back to work.

I am so sad because of the illness I missed Palm Sunday at church!  I love it because it kicks off Holy Week and we had a violinist come to accompany the choir.  At practice on Wednesday it sounded beautiful and I am sure it was perfect on Sunday.  Speaking of Easter...I have not found my Easter dress yet.   I really need to go find something!  Eeek.  With all the events at church this week I will not have time later in the week to look.  What are you wearing for Easter?

I hope everyone has a great week!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

The view from here

This is the view from my couch.  Poor thing doesn't ever get any love.  (Yes, that is a pillow he is laying his head on) What you do not see is me sick as a dog on the other end of the couch.  Tissues have taken up residence in my nostrils and I have no voice what-so-ever.  I think I over did the fun this weekend.  So I think I will hang out on the couch for few days and watch old episodes of Tori and Dean...don't judge.

P.S- Did anyone watch DWTS last night?  YAY!  I love that it is back on and I really love this cast.  After Buzz danced I cried....Love his heart.

Monday, March 22, 2010


On Saturday I had asked Austin to take a picture of Ashley and I.  Well I was being called in 50 different directions that night and took forever to get back to the task of taking a picture.
The next few photos are what happened when I left...

Haha.  They are so funny!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

It's a...


Warning- This post is LONG!

Shew!  I have been terrible about keeping the secret.  Haha.  I had spilled the beans only after 45 minutes of knowing.  By the time Saturday rolled around I had accidentally told 3 people!

I can not tell you how wonderful it was to see that baby.  The doctor said everything is perfect and is right on schedule.  He has the sweetest little face (from what I could tell) and a little buddha belly!

Here we are about to go into the ultra sound! 

The birth mother did not want to know what the sex was.  So during the ultra sound the doctor had her turn her head and said she would tell us in the hall what the baby was.  The doctor did the scan in the "area" and printed the pictures.  I knew the second it popped up on the screen that it was all boy. Once the whole ultra sound was done, the doc handed us the pictures, and we went into the hall.  Artie asks me quietly what I thought it and I just laughed!  I pulled out the ultra sound and showed him the evidence and he said "oh..well yeah I guess so" was very obvious!

Saturday evening we had some close friends and family come to a gender reveal party at my MIL's house.  It was so great getting together with everyone, there were almost 30 people there!  We could not believe it.  It was very casual with bbq and all the fixins.  I know Artie and I had a great time and feel so very blessed to have so much love and support.  To reveal the big secret I baked cupcakes with blue gumballs inside.  It was so funny to see their reaction to the news...even though most everyone thought it was boy.  Here are some pictures from the party!

Artie and I 

I made a little candy display and banner

Close up of the table with all the goodies

The proud momma

Ashley, her niece Devyn and I 

Traditional pic of Austin and I 

Rebecca, Tyler, Baby Callie and Jana

I have to say that Tyler is a hoot! He came in and saw the cupcakes and had to have one.  He kept saying he wanted to "mell" (smell) them. HA!   I must admit that I HATE to unwrap presents in front of people...I feel all awkward and weird. For this reason I had specifically told everyone "NO PRESENTS!!".  I was just happy for them to come celebrate with us.  So I had Tyler help me so it would take the attention off of me.  He was so excited about each one...just look at that face!

He is such a mess!  Here he is growling at the camera.  Look at my face in the background HA!

Man what a great weekend.

I am so proud to be adopting a son.  Artie and I have been finalizing a name and thinking about the nursery all weekend.  It is hard to believe he will be here in 4 1/2 months.  I know I say this every post but I feel so blessed.  I am so excited to share this journey with all of you!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Orange Chicken

I seriously just cooked a dinner that took 2 1/2 hours.  It was not a casserole or anything that needed to bake for a long period of time.  In was a mostly fried dish so the actual cooking only took 15 minutes.

The other day I started craving orange chicken from The Cheesecake Factory.  I. Love. That. Stuff.
So i search online for a recipe that resembles it and I find one.  Not only is it similar but the website says it is the EXACT recipe.  That was the one I had to cook!!

I must say that I am not the cook in the family.  That role is definitely filled by Artie.  I did not realize how long this little venture would take.  It turned out really yummy and was well worth the wait but will definitely not go on the weekly rotation.  It is really close to the exact thing and will fill my cravings until I get to visit The Cheesecake Factory again.

Here is the recipe...try it once!

Cheesecake Factory Orange Chicken
1 1/2 pound Chicken thighs -- skinless trimmed and cut in 1 1/2-inch pieces (I used breasts)
3/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth
3/4 cup orange juice (fresh squeezed)
1 1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest
8 strips orange peel (each about 2 inches long by 1/2 inch wide)
6 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup dark brown sugar -- packed
3 cloves garlic -- minced or pressed
1 piece (1 inch size) ginger -- grated
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon cornstarch PLUS
2 teaspoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons water (cold)
8 small whole dried red chiles -- optional
***Coating and Frying***
3 large egg whites
1 cup cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3 cups peanut oil

FOR THE MARINADE AND SAUCE: Place chicken in 1-gallon zipper-lock bag; set aside. Combine chicken broth, orange juice, grated zest, vinegar, soy sauce, sugar, garlic, ginger, and cayenne in large saucepan (with at least 3-quart capacity); whisk until sugar is fully dissolved. Measure out 3/4 cup mixture and pour into bag with chicken; press out as much air as possible and seal bag, making sure that all pieces are coated with marinade. Refrigerate 30 to 60 minutes, but no longer.

Bring remaining mixture in saucepan to boil over high heat. In small bowl, stir together cornstarch and cold water; whisk cornstarch mixture into sauce. Simmer sauce, stirring occasionally, until thick and translucent, about 1 minute. Off heat, stir in orange peel and chiles (sauce should measure 1 1/2 cups); set sauce aside.

FOR THE COATING: Place egg whites in pie plate; using fork, beat until frothy. In second pie plate, whisk cornstarch, cayenne, and baking soda until combined. Drain chicken in colander or large mesh strainer; thoroughly pat chicken dry with paper towels. Place half of chicken pieces in egg whites and turn to coat; transfer pieces to cornstarch mixture and coat thoroughly. Place dredged chicken pieces on wire rack set over baking sheet; repeat with remaining chicken.

TO FRY THE CHICKEN: Heat oil in 11- to 12-inch Dutch oven or straight-sided saute pan with at least 3-quart capacity over high heat until oil registers 350 degrees on instant-read or deep-fry thermometer. Carefully place half of chicken in oil one piece at a time; fry until golden brown, about 5 minutes, turning each piece with tongs halfway through cooking. Transfer chicken to large plate lined with paper towels. Return oil to 350 degrees and repeat with remaining chicken.

TO SERVE: Reheat sauce over medium heat until simmering, about 2 minutes. Add chicken and gently toss until evenly coated and heated through. Serve immediately

I served mine with brown rice.  Artie asked where the cheesecake was after dinner...I about fell out of my chair!  Haha...he was just kidding since it took so long to prepare.

Just a few more days left!  I have been keeping myself busy with the party preparations.  I can't wait to share it all with you!  Have a great day everyone! 

Monday, March 15, 2010

A random post

Man, each week seems to be busier than the last!  This week was church, baton, dance, baton, church, FIND OUT THE GENDER, work, and the gender reveal party.  I can not believe that we will know our little precious baby is this week.  We have been counting it down...everyday I wake up and Artie has sent me a text "10 more days...5 more days...".  It is such a great way to wake up and it also reminds me how much I have to be thankful for.  

I know a lot of people think a gender reveal party is silly but, for me, I was not able to tell my family in a special way about the baby.  So this will be special for us.  

I am so excited about my new spring wreath!! 

It was super easy too!  Can you guess what it is made out of?  Cupcake liners! 
I just took a plain styrofoam wreath and wrapped it with plain pink ribbon.  Next I took each liner, gathered it a bit at the bottom and hot glued it down on the wreath.  I like this one...but I think I am going to make another one using green ribbon and white cupcake liners.  My wreath was 18 in and took about 150 liners.  

Every day, Suzan and I get to enjoy the mayor of Jonesborough stoping by The Christmas Shop to grab some treats! 

Well at least SHE thinks she is the mayor.  Her owner works in the shop next door and she will run over everyday to see if we have some treats for her.  We really enjoy getting to love on her!  
Next Sunday I will have a post about the baby and let everyone know what this little blessing is!  I would have it ready soon but the reveal party is on Saturday and Sunday I am revealing it to the majorettes.  I do not want to spoil the surprise!

I am almost caught up on all the baby sizes and will back post them all at once!  WAHOO! 

I think this is it for the random post!  I hope everyone has a great week!!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The Crash

Oh man what a day.

This morning Artie rolled his Jeep over a couple of times.  He was driving down the interstate and a semi truck swerved to miss a dog and ran Artie off the road.  Well it was a steep embankment and once he hit it...the jeep started rolling.  He called and the first thing he said was "I'm ok but..."


He really was fine.  He had some cuts on his hands and arms from climbing out through his busted window.  Once we got home I looked him over with a fine tooth comb and he has some bruises that are coming up.  He told me he is very sore as well.

I was so amazed when we went to pick up the jeep from the tow does not look as bad as it could have been.  I was thankful that these things are built for rolling just in case.  Seriously yall...well you will see.

See?  I was shocked.  His window is busted out as well but he was able to drive it home from the lot. 

Poor he also had to go to court for the break ins that we had in the fall.  He had to sit in the courtroom for HOURS just waiting until it was his turn.  Luckily he told someone that he had been in a wreck that morning and they put him on the stand first so he could leave. Needless to say, it was a rough day for him.  

Tonight we are thanking God that the wreck was not as bad as it sounds.  I just do not know what I would do without him.  

Thursday, March 4, 2010

The Chicken Head

The year was 2004 and I was meeting Artie at his house for our very first date.  I knew that he had a dog and I wanted to get in good and bring Kasey (his dog) a present.  (I was working at PetSmart at the time which is where we "re-met")  I picked out a Greenie and a latex chicken to take.  She LOVED them!  In fact, we have a picture on our dresser right now of her eating that Greenie.  Well that poor chicken was loved as well.  A little too much.  It was ripped apart limb for limb until all that was left was the head.  

Since the chicken was as big as the poodle, he never wanted to play with it.  Once it became just a head, he was ALL OVER IT.  He carried it around for years.  Sometimes the chicken head would go missing for months...and then it would pop out of hiding.  

Artie and I move and thought the chicken head was long gone and then BAM, the poodle pulled it out from hiding.  

We move again and the chicken head disappeared again.  

Fast forward to last weekend. 

Artie and I sold our old washer and dryer because we bought new ones last fall.  He was delivering it to the family and there was the chicken head, under the washer.  The poodle has never been so happy!  

Tuesday, March 2, 2010


I promise a baby size update is coming..I have just been really busy today!

I have just been feeling some things in my heart that I need to get out.  

Everyday someone asks if I am so excited or happy.  And I am...a million times over.  But I have to say that in my heart I feel so very undeserving.  I am on my knees everyday thanking God for this opportunity. I could thank Him and praise Him until the end of eternity and it would never be enough to convey my appreciation.

I am so grateful that I have a God who deserves a fanfare but accepts all that I can give.

    "Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations."  Psalm 100:4-5