Monday, August 31, 2009

Toren and Tucker

We had dinner with Ryan and Sandra, our old neighbors, Saturday night. The McHusband offered to help Ryan with some scratches on his truck the next day so he and Toren came over.

While the big boys worked on the car, the little ones played in the backyard.

From my vantage point in the kitchen, it looked like Toren was an airplane so I guess that makes Tucker...the cart that pulls the luggage around?

We moved into the old house just after Ryan and Sandra moved into their house back in May/June '04. Toren was born in September that year so he's just about to turn 5. FIVE! How can he be that old already?

Fresh Corn Pudding

Chelle and Jeremy ate dinner with us last night. (More on why they were over in another post soon. Stay tuned. For now, I'll leave you with this hint: we used a nail gun, the McHusband's new toy.)

We each had a tenderloin, and they'd cooked some corn on the cob the night before so that was a side option.

Chelle and I went to Allrecipes to do a recipe search. We typed in what we had (corn, butter, milk) as well as ingredients we didn't have (cream cheese and sour cream) and we got a lot of options. We ended up choosing Fresh Corn Pudding.

We actually doubled the corn to 4 cups (2 cups fresh, 2 cups from a can), cut the butter back to 3/4 of a stick, only added 1 tsp of salt, and threw in about a cup to cup and a half of shredded Co-Jack cheese. Oh, we also added some onion powder and garlic powder.

Results? I'll let the 9 x 13 dish that served 4 tell the story.

It more than hit the spot - we all went back for seconds. If you're looking for something easy and not too bad for the waistline, I recommend giving this a try.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Hummus queen

We're going over to Ryan and Sandra's (our old neighbors) for dinner tonight and, since I have more tahini than I know what to do with, I said I'd bring some Black Bean Hummus. Again, I have more tahini than I know what to do with, so I decided to make another hummus that I had the recipe for as well.

Where the magic happened. Unfortunately, it didn't magically get cleaned up.

I had everything but garbanzo beans (a.k.a. chickpeas) and curry for the Jalapeno Hummus.

"Mmm, spicy!"

I should probably serve these with veggies instead of pita chips and Triscuit Thins to keep it a truly healthy appetizer option. Maybe next time. I did my time at the Y today, I can have the crackers.


We have visitors this weekend. Duke and Daisy are staying with us while Leigh and Mickey go to the lake.

Duke and Daisy have special couch privileges that don't extend to our dogs, and I have to say that I don't mind the extra cuddling at all. I don't think we'll be inviting Tucker and Morgan up to sit with us, but it's kinda nice to just mindlessly pet a dog while you're watching TV.

This was Thursday night. Daisy's not in the picture because she's on the McHusband's lap.

I'd say she's pretty comfy.

This afternoon, Tori joined the mix. She can only stay on the landing and upstairs for so long. This is her house, after all, and she's not about to let a couple extra canines keep her from going where she wants to be.

Yes, that's Daisy peeking out from UNDER the McHusband's leg. Hey, it gets crowded up there on the loveseat so you take what you can get.

"Is there room for me?"

Sorry, Tuck. Not in this lifetime.

Another creepy crawly

What is it about our house that seems to attract the multi-legged, antenna-ed type? Seriously, I'm thinking about starting a new "Bug" category for my posts.

He wasn't a little guy either.

I think he's just a grasshopper (albeit perhaps one on steroids), but if anyone knows that he's something different, please let me know.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Beantown Baker

I found a new blog - Beantown Baker. I scrolled through every post yesterday and bookmarked a few of her recipes.

Crockpot Beef and Peppers

I'm actually surprised that this one appealed to me. I'm not a huge meat (specifically beef) person to begin with, and the McHusband isn't your typical meat and potatoes kind of guy. During the week, we're happy with sandwiches and cereal and the occasional homecooked meal of pasta or Tuna Helper. I tend to cook more on Sundays, and then it's usually chicken or we'll throw something like kielbasa on the grill.

I think it's the crockpot that convinced me to try this recipe. Or maybe my iron's low.

And speaking of kielbasa...

Crockpot Kielbasa and Sauerkraut

Raise your hand if you say kih-bah-see? McWife raises hand. My sisters and I have always said it that way. Thanks, Mom and Dad!

I know not everyone like sauerkraut, but I actually do like it, and I think this recipe would change the flavor enough for the McHusband to like it, too.

Roasted Red Pepper Hummus

I have a whole can of tahini (remember the Black Bean Hummus I just made?) to use plus I like hummus so this was a no-brainer.

Finally, dessert!

Peanut Butter Surprise Ball

I've made Oreo Truffles and the Nutter Butter Truffles. I think it's time to expand my truffle repetoire to include these.

(By the way: Does the big, blood-red dot on the plate bother anyone else? I find it...distracting.)

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Look who's walking!

Chase is just shy of 11 months old. I can't wait to see him walking for myself when we visit next month for his birthday.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Another escape

When I got home from work a couple Fridays ago, Tucker was in the bonus room but not in his crate.

Apparently, he and his crate got into a fight and the crate lost.

The door was holding on by one little piece of metal at the top lefthand corner.

The wall to the left of the crate was a mess.

As was the inside of the crate.

And that bar you see in the bottom of the picture above? Yeah, that was the bottom of the crate where it meets the door and it was all messed up. It looks like Tucker pulled it in toward him to make room for his escape route.

And of course I can't forget to include the picture of the forensic evidence.

When the McHusband got home, he reinforced the crate with zip ties and so far so good. But it looks like Tucker was watching closely so he can plan his next escape.

"What? The crate started it."

Suuuuuuuuure, Tucker, we believe you. You're just an innocent victim.

Women's Night (Not be be confused with Ladies' Night)

I hosted Women's Night for some of the ladies in the neighborhood this past Friday. We had a good-sized group show up - there were about 15 of us. I made a couple appetizers then did a light dinner.

Appetizers: Black Bean Hummus and Pioneer Woman's Olive Cheese Bread. If you like olives, definitely give the bread a try. It was easy and yummy. The hummus was really good, too, and very healthy. The only downside was one of the ingredients - tahini. It was hard to find (it's by the peanut butter in case anyone needs some), it's expensive, and you buy it in a pretty big jar or bottle so you have a lot left when you only need two tablespoons.

My French bread was defective; it had two big holes in one half.

I just worked around the holes and everything turned out fine. Sorry, no pictures of my final product, but here's PW's bread.

I set the food, drinks, and glasses up on the counter by the fridge.

Dinner: I made Chicken Cups, fruit salad, Chilled Marinated Asparagus, and an Asian coleslaw.

The chicken cups are a combo of two recipes. I used this recipe to figure out what to do with the biscuits and how long to cook them, and I used this one (minus the water chestnuts) for the filling.

Dessert: I made the McMom's Oatmeal Cake and guess what? No one tried it. Hmph. Fine, more for me. And for the McHusband's coworkers since I'm sending it to work with him on Monday.

I think everyone who came had a good time, and the food was enjoyed by the people who tried it. I learned that when you have JUST women over for a party, you really just need a few things: wine, diet Coke, and chocolate.

I sure wish someone had let me in on this secret a little sooner.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009


Kevin and Jenny were in Charleston this past weekend and they participated in a triathlon. Jenny said her goal was to not die, and I'm happy to report she was successful in meeting that goal.

She looks pretty happy on the bike.

Still happy. Sweaty, but happy.

Kevin looks much more serious.

Chase and Papaw watched the action from the comfort of a wooden swing.

Look at the bike caddy that Papaw bought to cart Chase around. It even has a cup holder!
Congrats, Kevin and Jenny!

So impressed with myself!

Okay, the header could still stand to have lots of improvement, but I'm pretty proud of myself for getting this far. Where're all my graphic designer friends when I need them?

Oh yeah, I don't have any.

Sunday, August 16, 2009


I was on the computer this afternoon, and I guess no one else had anything better to do.

To be fair, the McHusband had already mowed and trimmed the front and back yards. Hey, I'd been busy too: the DVR's not gonna clear itself of all those recorded shows. It's a dirty job, but someone has to do it.


The McHusband figured out what was wrong with his potato gun. He switched out the starter, but that didn't get the gun working. He went back to the "fuel source" - AquaNet. Apparently he just needed more of it and to hold the can upside down. Who knew these potato guns were so complicated?

I cut the video off a couple seconds too soon. Did you guys catch that look of pride on the McHusband's face at the very end?

Morgan isn't a fan of the potato gun. When it went off the first time, she was in the den on her bed. She immediately got up and went to what is apparently her safe spot - the rug in the laundry room.

She was in there long enough that she needed to lay down and get comfortable.

Poor puppy. I have a feeling she'd been keeping her paws crossed that the potato gun would be deemed a failure and put away indefinitely.

Friday, August 14, 2009


There's a new seven-episode series starting on A&E on Monday. It's called "Hoarders." I can't wait to check it out because there's just something hypnotic about seeing people who live (if you can call it living) among so much stuff. The McHusband gives me a hard time about my closet as well as a couple others that aren't organized. I think he needs to watch this and appreciate that the mess is contained behind closed doors and that it's really not that bad.

The lady from the first episode was on The Today Show. They didn't show any "after" pictures, but apparently she and her husband are reformed hoarders. Guess I'll have to tune in on Monday to see how things worked out.

Can you imagine?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Oldies but goodies

Papa and Grandma Grace sent me some old pictures and it was a lot of fun to look at them. I figured I shouldn't hog all the fun so I'm sharing them with the world. Okay, with MY world.

Here I am at 38 months in June of 1982. (That's according to my mom's notes on the back of the picture.)

I love this next picture. Okay, I'm just gonna say it - I was CUTE with a capital C - U - T - E. And check out those long blonde locks. People in Hollywood pay big bucks for hair that color.

This next picture of Bri and me was taken about a month before Shannon was born (again, according to my mom's notes on the back of the picture).

Mom, seriously, what's up with Bri's helmet hair?

And then there were three. Or maybe Bri and I were just dreaming of a little sister and that's why Shannon's just a floating head?

Nope, she's real. This was taken in January of 1984 so Bri was 3, Shannon's 9 months old, and I'm 3 months shy of 5.

Is there any doubt that Owen is Shannon's son? The picture of him was taken at his 9-month check-up.

I don't have any pictures of Bri younger than 2 so I can't do a similar comparison of her and Lyla, but I look forward to when I can. Mom, got any pictures of Bri as a one-year-old that you can send me?

Hope you all enjoyed that little trip down memory lane. Maybe one day I'll be brave enough to show you what happened to that adorable 38-month-old with the beautiful hair when she got a perm in third grade.

It wasn't pretty.