Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Long Time Ago

I can not honestly say I remember this moment. I do remember the house without the shanty that Dad built on to it later. I look at my hair cut and wonder, WHY?!? I guess it was probably easier to take care of. WHO knows?!?!? I will have to get back to scanning more of these old photos into the computer. It takes so much time to do this. I have gotten tired of sitting at the computer. I know my family can not believe it, but it is TRUE! Till next time...

Fortune Cookies

John said that he did not care where he ate, as long as there were NO potatoes. We all kind of agreed oh Chinese. The Panda Buffet is kind of a favorite. Tessa really only likes the seafood mixture. (with a little bit of pie mixed in.)

The little pieces of paper in the cookies always kind of make me smile. John's said, "Time flies. Suns rise and shadows fall. Let time go by. Love is forever all." Jacqui's said, "Someone from your past has returned to steal your heart." I do not believe in these, but they are entertaining. Till next time...

Monday, November 27, 2006

Festive Lemon Cookies

1 cup butter or margarine, softened
1 cup sugar
1 (3_oz.) package cream cheese, softened
1 egg yolk
2 Tbsp. ReaLemon Lemon Juice from Concentrate
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 tsp. salt
21/4 cups unsifted flour
* Lemon Glaze (recipe follows)

Lemon Glaze: With mixer, beat together 4 cups unsifted confectioners' sugar an 1/4 cup ReaLemon Lemon Juice from Concentrate. (Add additional lemon juice in small amounts for a thinner consistency if desired.) Divide glaze and tint with food colorings if desired. (Makes 11/3 cups).

  1. Combine all ingredients except flour and Lemon Glaze; with mixer, beat until well blended. Beat in flour.
  2. Divide dough in half; wrap in plastic wrap and chill at least 1 hour.
  3. On well floured surface, knead one dough portion into a smooth ball. Roll dough to 1/8-inch thickness. Cut into desired shapes. Place 1 inch apart on ungreased sheets.
  4. Bake in preheated 375 degree oven 7 to 10 minutes or until lightly browned around edge. Cool. Repeat with dough scraps and remaining dough. Decorate with Lemon Glaze. Store tightly covered.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Thanksgiving Day

This will be a quick post to say that we arrived at my parents this morning at 10:30am. I am sure that John was wondering if he was ever going to get all his females out of the house. (Dog included!!) The country side is so brown and in need of a coat of white. I really do not like this time of year as it is just to drap.

Mom out did herself with the simple turkey dinner that we all enjoyed. Ronna had called to say that she was at a different residence and that she had also had another baby a year ago. It has been hard to keep up with her so nice to finally make contact.

I had to have a little nap and then many of us went out to the old missile site to see what it looked like inside. I remember often wondering what it was like when we would drive by that place. It is a big mess right now. The raccoons have been making themselves at home and one never left. It was hard to see as there is power to the place and windows are boarded over.

It is now evening and the kids are playing Lego's, some are watching movies. I for one am trying to keep my eyes open, TOO much food!! I hope that you have all had a great Thanksgiving!! Till next time...

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Rena's Buttermilk Cake

2c. sugar 1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 c. butter or shortening 2 tsp. soda
2 eggs 1/2 c. cocoa
1 c. buttermilk 1 c. hot water
1 tsp. vanilla 2 1/2 c. flour

Mix ingredients and bake for 350 degrees for 40 minutes.

This recipe has been in the family since I was in 2nd grade. A classmates mother put it in a book that was made at that time. It is very yummy!! ENJOY!!

The Photo for the day and I know that Julie is so happy that I took it. ;) She had to check her email and make a small post before she left for Pracs and then home. I know that my desk is very cluttered. I do think that is my middle name. Tessa was very excited that she left her lemon poppy scones here. I just have to get her off to school and then I can relax.

Tomorrow we will be going home to my parents. I know that Tessa had hoped that we could go tonight, but John is going to be putting in another long day. It just means one less night of dealing with the dog at Mom's. I hope to have many new photos to share with everyone when I get back. Till then, ciao...

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Rhubarb Crunch

1 cup sifted flour
3/4 cup uncooked oatmeal
1 cup brown sugar (packed)
1/2 cup melted butter
1 tsp. cinnamon
Mix till crumbly. Press 1/2 crumbs into 9" baking pan. Cover with 3 cups of diced rhubarb.
Cook until thick and clear:
1 cup water
1 cup sugar
2T cornstarch
1 tsp. vanilla
Pour over rhubarb. Top with remaining crumbs and Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. Enjoy

Butterscotch Bars

My Grandma Helen's Bars.

Dry ingredients:
2c. graham cracker crumbs
1/2c. walnuts
1/2c. coconut
2c. miniature marshmallows
Beat 2 eggs
1c. white sugar
3/4c. margarine
Stir, bring to boil and boil slowly for 5 minutes. cool.
Dump in dry ingredients and press in 9 by 13 pan.
1 pkg. butterscotch chips
3 tbsp. peanut butter.
I made these yesterday. Due to much confusion around the kitchen, I did not let the syrup cool. They do not turn out as well, but everyone eat them anyway. This is one of those recipes that I always think of my grandma when I make them. I do not put the walnuts in, I do not put nuts in any recipe. Hmm, well I guess that is all for now.

Chicken Zucchini Casserole

1 package (6 oz.) stuffed mix
3/4 c. butter, melted
3c, zucchini
2c. cubed cooked chicken
1 can (103/4 oz.) condensed cream of chicken soup, undiluted
1 medium carrot, shredded
1/2c. chopped onion
1/2c. sour cream

In a large bowl, combine stuffing mix and butter. Set aside 1/2 cup for topping. Add zucchini, chicken, soup, carrot, onion and sour cream to the remaining stuffing mixture. Transfer to a greased 2 qt. baking dish. Sprinkle with the reserved stuffing mixture. Bake,uncovered, at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes or until golden brown and bubbly.

I just wish that my family loved this as much as I do. I have to make it just for my daughter Brenna and I. It is a great way to use the zucchini that is growing like crazy in the garden right now. Enjoy!!

Oatmeal Cake

1 1/4 cup hot water 1 1/3 cup flour
1 cup quick oatmeal 1 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 cup butter 1 tsp.cinnamon
1 cup white sugar 1 tsp. soda
1 cup brown sugar pinch of salt
2 eggs beaten

Pour hot water over oatmeal and butter and let stand 20 minutes. Add rest of ingredients and mix well. Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.


1/2 cup walnuts 1/4 cup cream
1/2 cup brown sugar 1 cup shredded coconut
6Tbsp. melted butter

Mix together and place on cake. Place back in oven under the broiler to caramelize. ENJOY!!

Banana Nut Bread

1/2cup butter
1 cup sugar
3 bananas
2 eggs
2 cup flour
1 tsp. soda
1/2 cup nuts
1 bottle Maraschino Cherries

Cream the butter and sugar. add the bananas and eggs. mix this. add flour and soda. I do not follow the rest of this recipe. I hate nuts so I put in chocolate chips. My family does not like the cherries so they are left out also. Mix well. Bake 350 degrees for 1 hour. Enjoy!!

No Bake Cookies

2 cups sugar
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 stick of butter

1/2 cup peanut butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
4 cups oatmeal

1. Mix first four ingredients in a large pan and have an adult bring it to a boil, stirring frequently.
2. Remove from heat and add peanut butter and vanilla. Stir until peanut butter is melted.
3. Add oatmeal and stir until well coated.
4. Drop by spoonfuls unto a greased cookie sheet. Refrigerate until set.

Monday, November 20, 2006

I was going to post last night, but Blogger was NOT working. I was once again sitting watching TV with one eye and playing with my photos with the other. I found some that I just have to share. This weekend was so quiet, that I really have nothing else to say.

John had to work yesterday, ALL DAY!!! :( Alicia came over for a bit after putting in a few hours at the hospital. She will be starting her new job on the 4th of December. I know she is very excited and I hope that it goes as she hopes.

Yesterday, I thought since I was not doing anything I would do that dance game for a bit of exercise. I was wearing less than the usual clothing, so when I heard my door open I just assumed that John was finally getting home. It was JULIE and we both ended up with strange looks on our faces. Her comment was, "OK, Grandma O'Brien!" I guess an inside joke that only family might actually understand. She was tired and took a nap before heading over to Pracs to check in.

It is the 20th of November and right I have 41 degrees on my thermometer. It is enough to make me smile. The wind is rather brisk, but I am not having to put up with snow. Just so it gets here by Christmas, is all I care about. Tessa can not wait to go to Grandma's house for Thanksgiving. Let the holiday's begin!! Jerry and Julie, I hope we can get on the cam together while we are up at Mom's?!?! Till next time...

Friday, November 17, 2006

He is only 37

John had his birthday yesterday. He had to work, but planned to get off early enough to go and have supper with his family. I made a chocolate cake from scratch. I rarely do that these days, as the box is so much easier. Tessa was rather excited at the thought of Alicia and her family coming here after supper.

We all met at Paradiso, and enjoyed out time together. We all were so full that no one wanted cake and Tessa was disappointed when they did not come over. She just loves to have them over even when she does not know how to show it properly. The photo that I put here is the gift that Tessa picked out for him. A picture frame that he can put all his girls in. Tessa's hair is so wild from wearing her stocking hat all night. Till next time...

Richard Bach

Can miles truly separate you from friends... If you want to be with someone you love, aren't you already there?

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Are you a perfectionist?

You Are 60% Perfectionist

No one would call you a perfectionist, but you definitely have a side of you that strives to be perfect.
Try to see your mistakes as learning experiences, and don't be so hard on yourself when you screw up!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Reading Picnic

Today I was privileged to go and see Mariah read her little books. The first graders had parents and Grandparents come as have cookies while they were read to. She was so excited to see both of us. I had to smile as I watched read and remembered how much Alicia did NOT like to read in first grade. Mariah tends to have a hard time focusing sometimes on the task at hand. She is much more social than any of my girls were. Alicia is going to have her hands full with that little Miss. She has grown up way to fast!! Till next time...

Monday, November 13, 2006

Let it go

Every time I have made a cross stitch picture, it has always been hard to let it go. So much time and energy goes into each one. My eyes are not able to really stand it like they used to. We have just gotten this light with a magnifying glass to see if it will help. I guess time will tell. I would really like to get Brenna's stocking done. It has only been about 2 years since I started it. It has been a humbling experience to realize that I can not see as I used to.

Well, I have just sent a picture I made a few years ago to Turkey. I hope that it makes it there OK. I came to the realization, it may as well be enjoyed and not stuck away in the closet. I had to take a photo of it. It is a Paula Vaughan design. I just those her style and I know I am going to want to do another one. Well, till next time...

Judy Garland

"For it was not into my ear you whispered, but into my heart. It was not my lips you kissed, but my soul."

Friday, November 10, 2006

No School

This was one of the NO school days, all parents so look forward too. The one day that Tessa could actually sleep in and she is down to watch TV at 6:30am. I just look at her and shake my head. I do not even try to figure out this child. I did irritate her by saying that I was going to be my exercise by doing that dance game. She was going to limit me to only 30 minutes. Her reasoning being that is all I did at curves. Little does she know that I get kind of competitive and want to beat my scores every time I do it.

I have no idea why I did this, but I took a small nap and then woke up thinking, I forgot to call Alicia. Tessa was not happy with the choice of our lunch date, but life does not revolve around her. It is much calmer to just have lunch with Alicia, but I also know that Tessa enjoys being with her.

I knew that this afternoon, might get kind of long. I really do NOT like shopping and Tessa wanted to find her father a birthday gift as that time was fast approaching. Without giving away the surprise on the chance that John might actually read this, something was found to satisfy him. ( or should I say satisfy Tessa!) A stop at the library for a book on wolves topped off the afternoon before going home. I guess she has a report to do and now I need to get her on that before Sunday night!! Wasn't this an exciting entry? HAHAHAHAHAHA!!! Till next time...

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Do you ever wonder?

I went to bed thinking, this date used to be important and I can not remember why? I fell asleep thinking I would have to dig out an old diary and see what I was doing years ago. I am amazed that it was still with me this morning. I pulled out my diary from 1987. Yesterday was my ex in-laws wedding anniversary. My anniversary to Leon was on the 6th. I had been telling Alicia that I knew that date was the first part of November, but I could not remember.

In 1987 on yesterday's date I was helping Leon move trucks from Howard's. Isn't that exciting!! ;) He worked on his pickup and I guess I watered trees. It does not mention anything the girls did, so I guess there were no problems. This has to be the most bizarre entry to date! I have to say thought, if it were not for those diaries, my 20's would be a blank. Till next time...

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Those that touch you...

God determines who walks into your's up to you to decide who you let walk away, who you let stay, and who you refuse to let go!

Being Transparent

The ability to be honest even with ourselves can be such a difficult action. In bible study we were learning that God knows all that we have done and will do and still loves us. For me, that is such a relief that I can be transparent with him. I can tell him anything and he is not going to be surprised. I have found myself in situations thinking, what am I DOING here. We live in a time where the evil one seeks to devour us. HE has the unique ability to suck us into situations that maybe years ago would have never been a problem.

Life is a constant growing process. I have flunked to many test and had to retake them, that it is not even funny!! I am sure you wander where this is all coming from. I can not always put the funny here, because life is not always very funny. (I do love a good laugh though!!!) I have been pleased with a husband that has a very unique mind. He will come up with the silliest of things and having me literally holding my sides as I laugh. I just wish he would write this stuff down!!

So you see, I know I am no angel, and thank goodness my heavenly father loves me. I have this husband that can make me laugh. I can be myself with him and I know he loves me. That in itself it a very great accomplishment. Hmm, I seemed to be in a strange mood for these words to come out. I think my family is very used to that though, right!!! :) Till next time...

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

What classic movie are you?

What famous leader are you?

How many of me?
LogoThere are:
people with my name
in the U.S.A.

How many have your name?

There are 1,500 people in the U.S. with the first name Jacqui.
Statistically the 4019th most popular first name. (tied with 1145 other first names)
More than 99.9 percent of people with the first name Jacqui are female.

There are 2,096,780 people in the U.S. with the last name Williams.
Statistically the 3rd most popular last name.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Yesterday was an unbelieving beautiful day. The weekend was quiet without injury to anyone! :) The new toy in the house has Tessa's attention. She can sit for hours and play on the Sony PlayStation. We had heard that the dance games were good exercise, so thought that maybe it would get her off the couch. I was trying to do it yesterday. I am feeling so OLD and this hip is NOT back to normal. The game allows you to use your own music and make up your own dance. I let Tessa make up a dance and I would try to follow the arrows as they flashed across the screen. I am SO glad that NO one can see me making a complete fool out of myself. Tessa thinks I should do this every morning for exercise. (How do I get her to do it also?!?!?)

Alicia called me this morning and asked what I was doing? For my family you will know what I mean when I say, finding my table. ;) I had not talked to her much over the weekend so we had to catch up. She is finding out that being a newly wed comes with some adjustment. The dealings of new family and just fitting all the pieces together. I am here to listen, but I can not intrude. She has to find her way with her new family. I am now just MOM.

The photo I have included here is of the bonfire at the now famous house warming where I was such a klutz. It will be a few months before we get to do that again. I am already looking forward to the next summer. Time to get Tessa off into the shower. Till next time...

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Lessons learned

I have had to learn another lesson the hard way. I just hate it when words are said for they are forever left imprinted on your heart. The hard thing for me is to just move forward as if nothing has happened. I am the type of person that likes to just hide and not deal with life. Oh, to see what others see in me. I wish that I did not doubt myself so much. Life is such a learning process. Some hard and some much easier. Well, till next time...

Friday, November 03, 2006

The New School Prayer

This was written my a teen in Bagdad, Arizona. (I had saved this and thought I would share it.)

Now I sit me down in school
Where praying is against the rule
For this great nation under God
Finds mention of Him very odd.
If Scripture now the class recites,
It violates the Bill of Rights.
And anytime my head I bow
Becomes a Federal matter now.
Our hair can be purple, orange or green,
That's no offense; it's a freedom scene.
The law is specific, the law is precise.
Prayers spoken aloud are a serious vice.
For praying in a public hall
Might offend someone with no faith at all.
In silence alone we must meditate,
God's name is prohibited by the state.
We're allowed to cuss and dress like freaks,
And pierce our noses, tongues and cheeks.
They've outlawed guns, but FIRST the Bible.
To quote the Good Book makes me liable.
We can elect a pregnant Senior Queen,
And the 'unwed daddy,' our Senior King.
It's "inappropriate" to teach right from wrong,
We're taught that such "judgements" do not belong.
We can get our condoms and birth controls,
Study witch craft, vampires and totem poles.
But the Ten Commandments are not allowed, It's scary
here I must confess,
When chaos reigns the school's a mess.
So, Lord, this silent plea I make:
Should I be shot; My should please take!

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Day 4

This day started out with a frustration that most would think does not really matter. I made the mistake of uploading a new version of MSN and it did NOT work. UGH!! I am not sure why I bother with it, as it is nothing but problems. Tessa wanted to put on fingernail polish and I am thinking, we do NOT have time for this. I am amazed I got her to school on time. She never wants to dress warm enough for me, but at least she took her snow pants without to much complaining.

I know this is supposed to be day 4 on this diet. I am much calmer today as yesterday I made the decision to relax on driving myself and my family CRAZY! My constant need to control what everyone is eating only burned me out. I can not be cooking one meal for me and something for everyone else. I do NOT want to take the JOY out of life. I know that my mood is what leads the rest. The smile that everyone wants to see on my face is not always very easy to find.

I often feel pressure from many forces in my life. I let others dominate me and I need to learn to be more assertive. The ability to say NO and not feel bad is very hard for me. I find that being nice is not always a good thing. IT should be, but people will take advantage of you if they can.

Tessa brought home her school photo for the year. I had to smile as she was able to show her new earrings. I asked her about it and she said the photographer did her hair that way. Everyone that sees her calls her an angel. (if they only knew!) She still tries to keep her room clean. Now to get this hip working better so I can get up those steps easier. For now I have to trust John to keep on top of it.

I had shown someone my cross stitching on the cam and now he wants me to send him some. I guess why not, I enjoyed making it more then putting it up. I guess let someone else enjoy it in their home. I think I have written enough for now. Till next time...

Wednesday, November 01, 2006


A woman goes to her boyfriend's parents' house for Christmas dinner. This is to be her first time meeting the family and she is very nervous. They all sit down and begin eating a fine meal.

The woman is beginning to feel a little discomfort, thanks to her nervousness and the broccoli casserole. The gas pains are almost making her eyes water. Left with no other choice, she decided to relieve herself a bit and lets out a dainty fart.

It wasn't loud, but everyone at the table heard the poof. Before she even had a chance to be embarrassed, her boyfriend's father looked over at the dog that had been snoozing under the woman's chair, and said in a rather stern voice, "Skippy!".

The woman thought, "This is great!" and a big smile came across her face. A couple of minutes later, she was beginning to feel the pain again. This time , she didn't even hesitate. She let a much louder and longer rrrrrip.

The father again looked at the dog and yelled, "Dammit Skippy!" Once again the woman smiled and thought "Yes!" A few minutes later the woman had to let another rip. This time she didn't even think about it. She let a fart that rivaled a train whistle blowing.

Once again, the father looked at the dog with disgust and yelled, "Dammit Skippy, get away from her, before she shits on you!"