Monday, December 31, 2012

Happy New Year! Bring on 2013!

Hey Y'all!
Happy almost new year! I can honestly say, I am ready to say goodbye to 2012! This has been an interesting year. I hope that next year is so much better!

After I last blogged, I ended up in the CVS Minute Clinic with a double ear infection and a sinus infection! What a way to start off Christmas. The antibiotic made me feel better and it also helped my tummy too! I was able to enjoy Christmas Dinner. Which is why I am sitting here in my stretchy jammies typing this post!

I was able to get a few last minute presents knitted up before I hit the road for my holiday travels.

I worked on a sparkle cowl for a friend of Mom's. This friend has been like an aunt to me my whole life. We knew she would appreciate the sparkle! This was knit in the round on a size 13 needle with two yarns held together. I used Rozetti Cotton Gold in the 1096 color. The other yarn I used was Berroco Elements. This was a reddish color.

Another quick gift that I knitted up was called the Wasabi Cowl. I just love that name! It literally took one rerun of Castle and one episode of Rizzoli and Isles to knit up. The pattern is free and so easy. It also goes VERY fast. You use a very bulky yarn and a 19 needle. I used a 17 needle since I am such a loose knitter. The pattern calls for a fancy yarn, but I had some Loops Jubilee yarn in my stash and used it. The colorway is fire red. It turned out so cute and I ended up giving it to my mom for Christmas. It matches her pink coat!

I spent a few days after Christmas in Beaufort. We hit the movies and saw The Guilt Trip. It was very funny. Very rarely do I laugh all the way through a movie, but with this one I did.
Believe it or not, I had a packed knitting basket but I haven't touched it! I started reading a series of books by Dee Henderson and I can't put them down. I have read four books over this break. It has been so relaxing!

One thing we did get accomplished during my visit was a picture for my New Year's cards! I was a little late with Christmas ones this year, so I decided we would send out New Year's ones. It will be some happy cheer in the mailbox along with those Christmas bills! The shot below is one I used on the card. Pitty Pat and I both are smiling and he looks so cute!

Also, if you have seen the Mermaid special on the Animal Planet channel.. there is supposed to be a LIVE mermaid living on the Naval Base in Beaufort. So. Of course, Pitty Pat and I had to go on a mermaid hunt. We found one!

The Friday after Christmas I hit the road for Columbia. My best friend's son got married on the 29th. I enjoyed my time in Columbia and I even hit The Needler for their year end sale! I picked up several cute knitting patterns and some beautiful yarn. I have some more baby gifts to work on and I picked up the cutest hat pattern! I am sure I will be getting alot of use out of it!

The wedding on Saturday was beautiful. The reception was held at Saluda Shoals Park and we got to enjoy the lights as we drove in to the reception. We had a great time. Here's a shot of Toni, Marie and I from the reception. Marie looked so pretty!

 I was very sad my time in Columbia was so short, but also happy to get on the road to pick up Pitty Pat! I left Columbia yesterday morning at 9:30, met Mom in Charleston at 12 to get the Pitty Padster and got home to the beach about 2:30. I was so tired!

Today I spent the day getting groceries and running errands. One of my sweet students gave me a gift certificate to Abuelos, my favorite restaurant. I picked up lunch from there today and then enjoyed a two hour nap! I am not a big New Year's person. I hate to be out on the roads tonight, so I plan on watching the Clemson/LSU game, knitting and reading. I am so tired I may be asleep before midnight! My Christmas decorations are still up and y'all know how I love the lights. I just can't bear to take them down. I have a feeling that may have to wait until this coming weekend. I go back to work on Wednesday for a workday and then the kiddies come back on Thursday. Then we are back to the hustle and bustle.

Looking back, I only managed 57 blog posts this year and that makes me sad. I hope to be a better blogger next year. I just kind of felt like I didn't have a lot of good to share this year. Don't worry, I am not going anywhere! And. I received THREE Crockpot recipe books, calendars and recipes in a box this year. I am sure looking forward to cooking next year. In fact, I am cooking my Hoppin' John in the Crockpot tomorrow!

Happy New Year and thanks for sticking with me this year!
:) JKP

Thursday, December 20, 2012

New Plates!

Hey Y'all!
I did a little bit of thrifting yesterday and came across some Correlleware! I just had to add these to my collection. These are the medium sized plates and they are perfect for me. Do you notice the plate of noodles? BOO. I am having a bit of a Crohns flare right now and this is all my tummy can handle. Let's hope rest and a light diet of noodles and broth will take care of this! I want to eat Christmas Dinner!
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Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Vacation Is All I Ever Wanted! Vacation, Time To Get Away!

Hey Y'all!

I am bringing back one of my favorite songs from the 80's band the Go-Go's! It's official... I am on Winter Break! WHOOO HOOOOO!

And, just in the nick of time. My tummy has been giving me quite the fit for the past few weeks. Today it reached a crescendo. In fact, when I woke up this morning, I wasn't sure how I was going to make it through the day. A little Sprite, some Motilium and a few hours later I was better. Stress is really getting to me and I am very tired. I am hoping with some rest and a relaxed schedule my tummy will straighten itself out. I just drank some peppermint tea with Manuka Honey and I am feeling some better. My pain is back and it has me a little scared. :( Crohn's sucks.

I am hanging for a few days at home before I begin my Christmas travels. I have a lunch date with a good friend scheduled, some (read LOTS) of Christmas knitting to finish up, a gift certificate for a pedicure to use and plenty of naps to take. To tell the truth, I am really excited about the naps! I also stopped by the library today to pick up a few books. Yes. I have my kindle and I LURVES it. But, some of the new releases are a bit pricey right now, and I need to save money for some travels this month. Besides, the library is FREE. :)

I have some baking plans too! I have been busy making Friendship Bread loaves as gifts and I have plenty of starter to make some cookies too. I am looking forward to that! :) I have an oatmeal recipe that I am trying tonight in my crockpot. That sounded good to me for breakfast for the next few days.

Anyhoo, I just wanted to hop on and say hi! I will post some more tomorrow... It's  Winter
VACATION y'all..... :)

:) JKP

Monday, December 10, 2012

So I Made Some Chicken For Dinner...

Hey Y'all!

Would you believe me if I told you that it has been too hot for socks? FOR REAL. I spent two afternoons this past weekend reading on my Kindle Fire and enjoying the sunshine on my patio. And this is December. :) They say that after tomorrow it will get cool again, so we will see. I have plenty of Christmas Socks of the Day to show off, so let's hope it cools down!

Today after school I hit the grocery store. Not my favorite place to go. I LOVE to cook, but I hate to grocery shop. I think it has something to do with me being so exhausted after school that I hate to battle the cart and go up and down the aisles. Even with a list, some days it is just too much. BOOO.

So. I got my groceries, came home, took Mr. Pitty Pat for a walk and then took a long nap. My normal afternoon routine this year. :) I found this recipe on Pinterest a few months ago and suddenly it sounded like a good idea for dinner tonight. I didn't do a regular ingredients picture, but I did get a before and after. And by after I mean, after I had devoured part of it for my dinner!

All you need for this ... I think I will call it One and Done is...(I like one and done... you only use one dish!)
Chicken Breasts. I like to get the hormone, antibiotic free ones. My stomach is much happier.
Green Beans. I got fresh ones, because I have an aversion to canned beans. Yes. I am weird. And. I feel all pioneery when I get to snap the green beans.
Red Potatoes. I washed mine up and quartered them.
1 packet of Italian Dressing. Dry. Not mixed.
1 stick of buttah. (Butter.)
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees

Place all ingredients in a 9 by 13 baking dish. Sprinkle the packet of Italian dressing evenly over the beans, chicken and potatoes. Then take the melted stick of butter and pour that evenly over the ingredients. Cover with foil and cook for an hour at 350 degrees.

Oh yes. This one is a winner. The chicken and potatoes are seasoned perfectly and the green beans are not soggy. The best part of this dish is that I have two more meals to enjoy. WINNER WINNER CHICKEN DINNER!

On the knitting front there is a lot going on with my needles. But a few of these projects are Christmas prezzies and I can't quite show them off yet. This weekend was the first weekend since my birthday that wasn't jam packed. Friday night I had my faculty Christmas Party and then the rest of the weekend was blissfully peaceful. I only have 6 more days of school until Christmas break.

I hope y'all are doing well!
:) JKP

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

My Early Christmas Present, Girls Weekend Christmas Palooza Recipes and a Texas Toast DEBACLE!!

Hey Y'all!

Sorry, I took the day off yesterday. Literally. I took a personal day and had a wonderful day! I picked up a piece of furniture from a consignment store, did some shopping and enjoyed the beautiful weather! In fact, yesterday afternoon I pulled out my beach chair, poured myself a glass of lemonade, grabbed my kindle and sat my happy hiney on my patio in the sunshine for a few hours. It was so relaxing and I finished a book... True Devotion by Dee Henderson. It is a really good read! Everybody needs a relaxing Monday every now and then!

And, sorry. There is no Christmas Sock of the Day for today and yesterday. It has been in the 70's here and my toes have to be free! They say the colder weather will be back by the end of the week. I can't wait to show off my precious socks that I got this past weekend!

Now!!! If you have ever been to my house, you may notice how much yarn I have. At times, I probably could appear in an episode of hoarders. :) I am not that bad. My yarn is pretty much organized by project and color in my upstairs craft closet. However, I do keep a basket downstairs by my sofa and recliner with all of my current or about to be current projects. Ahem. Recently this basket has gotten OUT OF CONTROL. And, it was an eye sore in my living room. While out shopping with the girls this past weekend, I came across the perfect solution. Since I knew I couldn't fit it in Mitzi Mazda without tying Marie or Toni to the sunroof, I decided to think about it and come back on Monday. If the basket of shelves was still there.. then it was meant to be!

And guess what it now in my living room????? To understand the hideousness.. you must see a before and after shot...

BEFORE.......ACCCCKKKKKK!!!!! My yarn has been multiplying!

AFTER........ SQUEEEEEEE!!!!!!

My living room is much happier now! And, so am I! Santa came to see me a wee bit early! :)

And, now what you have been waiting for! Girls Weekend Christmas Palooza Recipes!
Now, my two favorite recipes I used, I found on Pinterest.. and those folks have blogs who have documented each recipe. Since I was cooking for company and I was under a deadline (read, I hadn't had ANY coffee while I was cooking on Saturday) I forgot to take pictures. So instead of re-inventing the wheel on my blog, I am just going to link to the recipes. I hope you guys really enjoy them! :)

Our favorite part of breakfast on Saturday had to be the make ahead French Toast Bake. Now let me tell you... this recipe calls for Texas Toast. But there is a Texas Toast debacle. After searching several stores for Texas Toast... that I had only seen a few weeks ago, I kept coming up empty handed. Finally the deli manager at my local Food Lion took pity on me and explained what was going on. You see, most Texas Toast in our country was made by Hostess bakeries. And now they are closed. NO MORE TEXAS TOAST FOLKS!!!! So I substituted Pepperidge Farm Farmhouse Hearty White Bread to make my french toast and it turned out great. You could use any hearty bread and I am sure it would be fine. But we really liked the Pepperidge Farm! I also left the crusts on my bread. I am normally not a crust eater... EXCEPT when I eat french toast. The recipe on the blog cuts off the crusts. Don't do it! :)

Here's the link to step by step directions for The French Toast Bake. Make this. Make this for Christmas morning! You won't be sorry!

The other recipe I tried was called Bird's Nest Breakfast Cups. It is a hashbrown base, baked in a muffin tin. Then you add egg, cheese and bacon. It is a great option for protein in the morning and it is easy to make!

Check out Bird's Nest Breakfast Cups here!

Alrighty, Rizzoli and Isles is on and I've got to watch it. I hope y'all have a good Wednesday! We have 10 more school days until Christmas break! :) YAY!

:) JKP

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Girls Weekend Christmas Palooza- 2012 Edition!

Hey Y'all!

Wow. I have gotten behind on my Christmas Sock of the Day postings! Last Thursday was a pretty rough day and I was not feeling the Christmas Spirit at all. Then on Friday I kicked of Girls Weekend Christmas Palooza 2012! Y'all know I love to have company and entertain, so Friday was a busy, busy day!

We will start back with the Christmas Sock of the Day tomorrow. Ahem. I may have purchased a few more pairs this weekend. But I say, if it makes you happy and it doesn't hurt anyone else... GO FOR IT!

We started off our weekend with a yummy dinner at Logan's Roadhouse. I won a gift certificate for a free meal at our last faculty meeting and Friday was the last day I could use it. After dinner we hit a few shops and then closed down the mall!

Saturday we slept in a little and I made a yummy breakfast. I make Paula Deen's Gorilla Bread.. that is a must have on our weekends! This year I also ventured on to Pinterest and used a few recipes too! I made make ahead French Toast, which was DIVINE, and so easy to do! I also made a hash brown, egg, cheese and bacon "muffin" of sorts, except it wasn't a muffin! I will be back to post the recipes and links tomorrow.
Here's a shot of our yummy breakfast!

That got us off on the right start! We did a lot of shopping and got a lot accomplished. We ended up at one for my favorite places in Murrells Inlet for lunch- The Dead Dog Saloon! We spent the rest of the afternoon shopping and just enjoying hanging out!

This morning the girls were ready for breakfast leftovers and then they needed to hit the road. Sadly, we did not get the annual Julia and Pitty Pat Christmas Card photo taken. I am not sure about cards this year. If I do them, they may be New Year's cards... I am just not sure!

I have taken tomorrow off to rest.. I have been really tired again lately, and running around this weekend was fun.. but tiring! I plan to take it easy tomorrow and work on a few Christmas gifts. I even hit a consignment store or two! But I am really looking forward to just taking it easy!

Tonight I plan on watching a couple of Christmas movies and bonding with Pitty Pat and my knitting needles!

I hope wherever you are you are enjoying this evening! I'll check in tomorrow!
:) JKP