Monday, December 4, 2017


Good morning, everyone!

I know I've been absent a few weeks. Going into the holidays is always a busy time of year. For me, the end of 2017 meant a major decision I needed to push through with. I have chosen to leave my position as Marketing Director for the publishing company. While I loved working with the authors, I really felt the time had come to move into something that I enjoyed doing, could work on my (or Bob's) schedule and provide me with some income. The time had come for me to follow my own advice and Enjoy the Journey

One thing I am blessed with is the opportunity to do my own thing. Bob makes a good living and has never wanted me to work. However, I have been drawn to making my own living since I was setting up carnival games on the sidewalk outside our home and charging neighborhood kids a dime to play. I'm creative like that.

When my (step) mom introduced me to crafting, she opened up a whole new world of possibilities to do something I truly love and make money at the same time. I've dabbled over the years with small projects but I'm looking forward to 2018 to push my on-line sales for Stampin' Up! and start my own mixed media business. I am also blesssed with a stash of craft supplies so I'll have minimal investment. That's always a plus.

Bob has been off work since the beginning of October and will be until sometime after the new year. While I love having him home, cash flow is important. I'll be starting right after Christmas creating consumable books then move forward with the craftier projects I want to make and sell.

While I get things in motion, my blogs will be off-line until January 29th. I know that seems like a long time but I need the time to put things on track for 2018. I also don't work more than about 4 hours a day when Bob is home.

I want to start 2018 on the right track and content ready to roll.
Here's wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year
Enjoy the Journey

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

FLYLADY WEDNESDAY - Coffee anyone?

I know I thought I'd have pictures of the laundry sorting unit but Bob hasn't finished it quite yet. Hopefully this week. Deer season will be starting soon so I need to get some of these projects out of the way before he disappears into the timber. 

While I'm not talking food this week, we are in the kitchen.

I wish I'd thought to take a picture of the before mess. The Keurig we had sat pretty much where this Hamilton Beach sits now. But there was an old fashioned trio of candy jar canisters in a wooden rack we'd gotten as a wedding present thirty-three years ago. They canisters collected a variety of tea/ cocoa packets we never used. Mostly because they were behind and we never thought to look there. We'd go for one of the tea boxes piled on top of it (or themselves). There had to be a better way.

I loved the idea of having the tea bags in glass jars. I've been moving a lot of items to glass canning jars over the past couple of years. So my mind went into planning mode. While I decided what I wanted to put the jars in, I removed all the tea bags from various boxes/ containers and put them into their own wide-mouth pint jar and labeled them.

I pondered the storage issue for several weeks then I came across THESE crates at Hobby Lobby. 

Wood 4-Compartment Box with Metal Corners

I knew four cubbies wasn't going to be enough but four together would work. I painted them all white. leaving the hardware it's natural state. Then my husband glued them all together. 

I still have a couple of labels to make.

Because this still sits behind the pot, I put the jars of tea we use most often on the top two rows and down the left side. If we need the others, they're easy enough to get to. 

If you look on the right side of the first photo, you'll see we had to move the K-cup drawer unit to a new location. The unit fit under the Keurig but the Hamilton Beach is a bit taller. We moved it to the side and Bob built a box for me to keep the cooking wines/ oils contained in one place. I can move these easily when I clean the counters on my Kitchen Zone cleaning when I move things and scrub the entire counter.

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

WEIGH IN - A bit late


I got a little caught up in a straw bale delivery yesterday and never got to any of my blog posts. I did weigh in before the thirty bales arrived and I spent most of the day working off pounds - I hope.

Thirty bales later Bob and I spent the day placing bales to create places to grow tomatoes, corn and anything else that I can think of next spring.

I've tried getting the bales in the spring but they are so difficult to come by. So I decided this year I would buy them in the fall when they are in abundance and hope they don't break down too much over the winter. If I don't 'condition' them - encouraging the decomposition process, I think I'll be okay.

Not sure what I'm doing the rest of the week. I do know we're having tacos for supper tonight, Ham and Beans tomorrow. Bob has a lodge meeting Thursday night so it's liver and onions with mashed taters for me. Friday is Chili, Saturday homemade pork burritos and Bob's favorite Pot Roast on Sunday.

I'll try to introduce you to what makes my Liver and Onions special next Wednesday and the recipe for the pork burritos, a recipe I learned at the age of 9 from a Mexican woman who lived in the trailer park where I lived. These are authentic Mexican pork burritos with two small shortcuts... shortcuts that in no way affect the flavor.  You'll see what I mean in a couple of weeks.

Whatever's on your plan for the week...

Enjoy the Journey

Wednesday, October 25, 2017


I guess I've shown the planner in the past month. but I like this cover shot better. I finally got the opportunity to sit and menu plan last week. I showed the planner to Bob so he knows what's for dinner on which day. I'm also keeping the shopping list handy so as I think of something, I can just flip open to the next shopping week and add it to the list. This next shot isn't very clear but does show the a shopping list in progress.

This week:
Monday - Leftover Pot Roast (from freezer)
Tuesday - Chicken Enchiladas
Wednesday - Meatloaf/ Scalloped taters/ cheesy green beans
Thursday - Tilapia/ Wild Rice/ peas
Friday - Chicken Fried Steak/ mashed taters
Saturday - Raid the Fridge/ Freezer
Sunday - Pot Roast and homemade rolls.

The Chicken Enchiladas were super easy. Sunday night when we got home from shopping I put 4 large boneless/ skinless chicken breasts in the crock pot with a 1/2 C water and about 4T Taco Seasoning Mix. Put the lid on and set to LOW. Monday morning, they were perfectly cooked. I turned the crock pot off and let them cool while we ate breakfast. Then Bob forked the meat apart and put it in the refrigerator until Tuesday.

Last night I added about another 3 T. Taco Seasoning and 1/2 can petite diced tomatoes for moistness to about half of the shredded chicken and heated it up.

I heated 8" flour tortilla shells in the microwave on a paper towel for 15 seconds. One at a time, then sprinkled a bit of shredded taco blend cheese down the center, topped with a generous 1/4 C of the chicken, rolled them up and placed them seam side down in a  9x12 glass casserole dish that I'd pretreated with a butter cooking spray and a cup of homemade cheese sauce. I got 6 enchiladas in the dish then poured another cup of the cheese sauce over top, making sure to cover all of the tortilla shell so they'd stay soft during cooking. I put uncovered in a 350* oven for about 20 minutes... the length of time it took me to mix up a batch of breakfast muffins. (I'll share that recipe next week)

We each started with two (though Bob went back for a 3rd). I topped mine with diced tomato, shredded lettuce, sour cream, guacamole and Taco Bell taco sauce. Bob just had tomato and sour cream.

I had heated up a can of refried beans but we forgot they were in the microwave. Today I'll buy a small beef roast and make a batch of burritos for the freezer. One can of refried beans, a tiny can of diced green chiles and a small beef or pork roast will make over two dozen burritos!

We're moving in to week 2. We'll see how this goes. With Bob being off work until things on the river pick up again, I need to make use of the contents in our freezer and pantry. As cold temps move in really early, I'm thinking a pot of chili. Leftovers will go great on top of the burritos. 

This week we're combining the Master Bedroom and the bathroom. 
For most of the time we've lived here, we've kept collapsible laundry hampers in the bathtub to sort laundry in to. Of course, that means moving them to another location when we want to use the bubble tub. And frankly, they really take away from the beauty of one of my favorite rooms in the house. So after seeing THIS on pinterest, I decided while Bob is off we need to fix the blight.

Putting this laundry sorting unit into an empty corner of the bedroom will bring the beauty back to the bathroom and get rid of those horrid collapsible hampers. Bob will be able to put his clothes in the basket rather than piling them on the floor by his side of the bed and I can grab a basket on my way out in the morning and start a load without wondering if I have everything. 

I hope to have pictures of the build next week. 

Monday, October 23, 2017

WEIGH IN 10-23-17


Not a number I expected to see on the scale this week. With all of the traveling, family visiting and my husband's birthday yesterday I have managed to stay on point. I didn't overeat at any of the places I ate out and there wasn't even cake for Bob's birthday yesterday. He did get a hot fudge sundae at Colton's from the staff and I only had two bites of his ice cream. So let's back up.

The last time I stopped in, I was headed for the Ozark Creative Writer's Conference in Eureka Springs AR. My sister, Kitty, our friend Linda and I arrived early enough on Thursday to enjoy the lunch buffet. I ate mostly protein and no cream soup. We also ate there on Thursday night. I had the hot roast beef with - but didn't eat the mashed potatoes.

Friday was breakfast at the same hotel restaurant. two scrambled eggs with bacon and toast. For lunch I had a sandwich and the salad bar. Now dinner, was a bit different. Friday and Saturday's meals were part of the conference. Friday night is always BBQ. I ate a small portion of the scalloped potatoes, green beans and 3 chicken thighs. I wasn't able to eat the brisket or the ribs without risk loosening my teeth. I passed on dessert.  

Saturday was more or less a repeat of Friday. The banquet fare was comfort foods. I enjoyed a piece of meatloaf and two pieces of their famous fried chicken with corn and green beans. While I drank water the entire weekend at all of my meals, I did stray and have a double shot of Peach Schnapps on the rocks. It's a tradition for my sister and me. 

Sunday, we had the brunch buffet. Made to order omelet with all the vegies, bacon, ham and chicken.  Sunday night, I threw together Hamburger Helper when I got home.

Monday, Bob and I drove into Springfield to meet his brother/ wife. Dean and Rhonda drove over from Oklahoma to spend the week with us. We ate at The Hill, an Italian Buffet named for the same heritage district in St. Louis. Tuesday we ate at Hemmingway's Blue Water Cafe at Bass Pro. While the past was a bit off course, I will say you can't eat as much as you think you can. Pasta fills you quick. At Hemmingways, I only made one trip and only proteins. No soup, no dessert.

Wednesday - Friday we ate here at home. I made basic comfort foods and never had seconds. Though I probably drank more soda than I should have. And thus the culprit. Bob has quit having a pitcher of tea in the fridge when he's home. He's been drinking more water. 

So my plan for this week, put a pitcher of unsweet tea in the fridge and keep the water jar filled and cold. 

The other thing I've started doing is making a weekly menu. I bought a Week on 2-pages planner specifically. If I've not shown that to you, that will be my post for Recipe Wednesday. Otherwise, I'll be showing you a recipe. I'm going to trade off between a Recipe and Flylady.

Bob is looking at being home more  as the weather changes and work on the river slows down. So there will be less cash-flow and I'll be making use of what's on hand for most meals. As we are fast approaching National Novel Writing Month, I see a lot of crock pot meals in our future. 

Do you have a go-to crock pot recipe? I'd love to know. Please share!
Enjoy the Journey!

Monday, October 9, 2017

Weigh In 10-9-17


Okay..The good news - Bob won the last challenge. He lost 4 pounds! I a so proud of him. 
The news I'm okay with - I probably am not going to hit 165 by OCW.. I leave Wednesday.

However, I am down almost 25 pounds from last year. With that in mind, I am not going to complain. I can live with a 25 pound loss :-D

Yesterday, I began emptying out just the sewing corner of my studio. I was 407 steps shy of 10,000 steps by the time I quit last night. Bob needs to connect the two kaylix units together then I can start moving stuff back in. I've been up since 4 a.m. I see a nap in my future. If I'd asked him to connect the units last night, I'm sure he would have then I could have been putting stuff back this morning. But he had put in a long day, too. By 6 p.m. we were both ready to call it a day. I was in bed by 9. Probably why I was up at 4 LOL

This will probably be my only post this week. I leave on Wednesday for Eureka Springs AR and the Ozark Creative Writers Conference. Four days in one of my favorite communities and the forecast is GLORIOUS fall weather. The dogwoods may even be changing color by then. 

I do lots of walking in ES so maybe there will be a lower number next week.. though I'm not hopeful. The food is amazing at Myrtie May's and Best Western Inn of the Ozarks. If you need some get away time, that is the place to stay!

Enjoy the journey!

Friday, October 6, 2017


I apologize for not getting in here on Wednesday. I was determined to get my music work done for the entire month as well as catch up some stuff for my boss. I did promise to show you the first section of my office that is FINISHED!

Here are a couple shots of the BEFORE.

Stamp storage and Scrap Rack Unit.
Anchored by two 2-drawer filing cabinets that hold adhesives
and large tape rolls such as packing/ painters/ carpet, etc.

This is the paper unit Bob built me earlier this year. 
This unit is supposed to be primarily Stampin' UP! product
as well as other scrapbook paper companies that I use

Okay, full disclosure nightmare aside, cleaning this area really didn't take that long. Was more a matter of just putting things where they belonged. I wanted this area completely cleaned as I will use this area for filming YouTube and Periscope videos.

Here's the results:

The general stamp cabinet as well as my triple base Scrap Rack
All of my stamps, including retired Stampin' UP! are stored by theme
in the Recollections Photo Boxes. Photo Boxes from Hobby Lobby are 
approximately 1/8" - 1/4" narrower and will not hold the stamp cases horizontally.

The top 1/2 of the paper cabinet. 
Top Shelf: 
Completed Christmas cards, Project items, Binder Clips, December Daily basket.
1st Row of Cubbies (L-R): 
SU 12x12 cardstock, Xyron sticker machine, Awards Cubbie, Past Catalogs and Business binders
2nd Row of Cubbies:
8.5 x 11" Stampin' UP! cardstock (rainbow order) Neutrals and precut/ scored cardbases. 12x12 Designer Series Paper
3rd Row of Cubbies:
Glitters/ micro beads (both non-SU), Current SU Stamp sets/ Embossing Folders, 6x6 paper pads, Paper Pumpkin kits/ stamp sets

The Bottom half of the unit
Narrow drawers are all ribbon, on cards and $1 stamp sets (narrow boxes next to drawers)
First Row of Cubbies:
Recollections cardstock, washi tape storage unit and larger paper tools, non- SU Paper pads, Seasonal/ Themed scrapbook paper
Bottom Row of Cubbies:
Light box, Cinch machine, Watercolor painting tote, 12x12 Paper pads in individual sleeves. 
The two magazine holders in the center cubby on the right are Stamping magazines from the UK.

The rest of the area has been in order but thought I'd show them off quick, too.
Storage rolling carts beneath the West window. 
Stores SU business files, past SU embellishments (for now), micro beads

Here you have a better shot of the top of the shelf below the West window.
This is where I store all of my mini ink pads, coordinating ink refills and mister bottles.
Then a shot into the corner. Wire rack holds the wifi modem as well as fruit jars of silk flowers.

 Above the West Window
A display shelf. Holds pre-made cards by theme/ occasion
Looks like a little row of houses.

Printers Box 
some of my my artsy style stamps as well as holiday stamps.

To the left of the West Window
My TV/ entertainment unit with a shadow box covering the electrical panel

Close up of the Shadow Box
This display of ACTs was made by friends from my scrapbook class 
when I worked at Michaels. Co-workers also signed it when I left.

One part of the office is complete... now to finish the rest of the office THIS weekend. I HAVE to have the room finished and the hide-a-bed pulled out and made for company before I leave on Thursday. They will arrive on Monday.. the day after I get back from conference. Going to be a busy weekend.

Whatever you have planned for the weekend, remember to Enjoy the Journey!