Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Sky Watch Friday

These are some shots I took last Friday on our way back from the blueberry fields. The bottom picture has some of the blueberry bushes -- and people picking -- in it. The top one I had to stop in the middle of the road and roll down my window to take. Beth and I noticed this tree on our way to the blueberry field, so I had to take a shot of it on the way back.

The skies weren't very pretty that actually sprinkled a little on the way home, but the countryside was very pretty to view!

Check out the other Sky Watch photos at Wiggers World!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Bear Alert!

That's what my mother-in-law said when she called this evening. Right before she called me a "400 lb bear" was seen across the street from us galloping through the field. I immediately went outside and called the kids in for a little while. I didn't want to take any chances. Right now they're back outside playing on the trampoline. I don't think a bear would come near all that noise! ;o)

I wonder if it's the same bear we saw two weeks ago?

Monday, June 23, 2008

Tortilla Chicken Soup

This is what we had for supper tonight and it was a big hit! I got the recipe from my church's cookbook, but I made some changes -- like I do to just about every recipe!

Tortilla Chicken Soup

5 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (frozen is fine)
1 cup onion, diced
1 (4 oz) can chopped green chiles
1 (15 oz) can diced tomatoes
2 cups chicken broth
1 1/2 cups frozen corn (or 1 15 oz can, drained)
1 can black beans
1 can chili beans
1 TBSP chili powder
1/4 tsp black pepper
1 tsp cumin
1 (10+ oz) can of tomato soup
1 (10+ oz) can cream of chicken soup
1 can full of milk
1 bag tortilla chips or corn chips

In a large crock pot place the chicken, onion, green chiles, tomatoes, black beans, chili beans, chicken broth, corn, chili powder, black pepper and cumin. Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours. Turn crock pot on HIGH and remove chicken pieces. shred meat with a fork. Add tomato soup and cream of chicken soup, one can of milk and the shredded chicken to the pot. Mix well until creamy and thoroughly heated through (approximately another 30 minutes). Serve with tortilla chips crushed on top (and some shredded cheese is good too!).

Three Things Meme

I found this on Theresa's blog and thought I'd give it a whirl! I'd like to tag Perri, Gwen and Marsha.

Three Things…
…THAT SCARE ME: losing a family member, those I love not loving God, losing the liberty to raise my family as God asks me.
…I LOVE: God, my family, and creativity.
…I HATE: phony people, distortion or lies about God's truths, pickled/sour foods.
…I’M DOING RIGHT NOW: Blogging, watching the kids, considering a nap
...I CAN DO: knit, sew, take pictures
…I CAN’T DO: jog/run, water ski, clap and sing at the same time! LOL
…THAT ARE MY ABSOLUTE FAVORITE FOODS: raspberries, spaghetti, eggs
…SHOWS I WATCHED WHEN I WAS A KID: Little House on the Prairie, Disney Sunday Movie, The Waltons

Monday, Monday

We had a good weekend...nothing exciting though.

Saturday Mom and I went yard saling. I got a few buy was a boxed set of the Lord of the Rings books for $ the box in like new condition! I also bought a pizza stone and pizza cutter (wheel) for $ in box. And I bought a game for Ben for $1.00...still in plastic wrap. It was a memory game of super heroes. I guess it's considered a smaller child's game, but he and Jamie and Raven have had a blast with it!

Saturday afternoon we gave our dog, Suzi, a haircut and a bath. She did pretty good. We took her to PetSmart last month for a haircut, so this was just a trim. Still, we had about half a grocery bag full of hair come off of her! She is a lot easier to bathe now! I also gave Neal a haircut. :o)

Oh, Friday night Ben went to a birthday party and sleepover, and Neal went for part of the party. So I took Beth, Raven and Jamie out for pizza and we rented a couple of movies. We rented The Water Horse and Game Plan. I wasn't familiar with either of them, but we enjoyed them both. I actually watched Game Plan twice (well, kinda...I fell asleep the second time around).

Sunday was church, naps and movies. Aahhhh....

Today I had J and R read to me, and we all did some chores. Then we went to the pool for four hours. Several of my friends (and the kids') were at the pool, so it was very enjoyable!

Beth ended up going home with one of her friends to spend the night, so we'll get her at the pool tomorrow.

Tonight we'll have a nice, relaxing evening!

Neal worked longer today, but not quite a full day...probably 7 hours. He's coming along!

Friday, June 20, 2008

Blueberry Pickin' Time!

Every year around this time we head off to the blueberry field! Neal loves blueberries year his oatmeal and in his yogurt. We also enjoy them in smoothies and just to eat when fresh. Today was the day! The opening day at our favorite orchard. It's not the fanciest orchard around, but it has one of the most beautiful settings. It's just so peaceful to drive out there and be surrounded by God's beautiful handiwork while we pick some of the most delicious, sweet candy He created!

Here's a picture of the fields. The white spots are people...

Another shot of the fields

Here's the gang! This me...picked over 22 lbs of blueberries in an hour!

I ended up bagging 14 quarts!

Aren't they beautiful?!! A lady at the orchard said that opening day is the best day to pick...that's when you can get the biggest, sweetest berries!

Neal made blueberry/banana smoothies for all of us! Yummo!

Here's Ben enjoying his smoothie!

Two of our friends are staying with us right now. This is Jamie.

And here's Raven!

Every year we have a contest when we pick berries. We split into teams and see who can pick the most. This year the teams consisted of: Ben and Raven, Beth and Jamie and Mom and I. Mom and I do it for the fun of it, but we don't win the prize. This year's prize was (drum roll please...) a whopping $2.00! Yes, you heard that correctly, I dished out an entire two dollars to the winning team! You wouldn't believe how hard they worked for that $2.00 either!

This year's winner was the team of Raven and Ben!!! They picked around 7 1/2 lbs! WooHoo!! Afterward they were whispering and giggling, and said they had a secret. When they got home they presented Jamie and Beth with their winnings! I thought that was so sweet! It was Raven's idea, and I was very proud of her!

It's so easy to make a "task" a fun outing! The kids will always remember it.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Sky Watch Friday

Cloudy Skies in Virginia

My daughter, Beth, posted her first Sky Watch photos today. Check her pictures out!

For more pictures, head on over to Wiggers World and check out some of the links!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

ABC Meme

A is for age:

B is for burger of choice:
I'm not a big burger fan, so believe it or not I'll say McDonald's Quarter Pounder with Cheese

C is for what kind of car you drive:
Chevy Cobalt

D is for your dog’s name:

E is for essential item you use everyday:
Colgate toothpaste!

F is for favorite TV show at the moment:
Glen Beck

G is for favorite game:

H is for HomeState:

I is for instruments you play:
Clarinet (but I haven't played in years)

J is for favorite juice:

K is for whose butt you’d like to kick:
Uh, I can think of a few politicians...

L is for last restaurant you ate at?

M is for your favorite Muppet:
Miss Piggy

N is for Number of Piercings:

O is for overnight hospital stays:
5 or 6 (not including all the nights I spent with Neal :o)

P is for people you were with today:
Neal, Beth, Ben, Jamie, Raven and Mom

Q is for what you do with your quiet time:

R is for biggest regret:
It's so big I don't talk about it. :o(

S is for status:
Married to my best friend and Mother of two great kids!

T is for time you woke up today:
7:00 am

U is for what you consider unique:
Every day

V is for vegetable you love:
grilled asparagus

W is for worst habit:

X is for x-rays you’ve had:
too many to count

Y is for yummy food you ate today:
salad with grilled chicken

Z is for zodiac sign:
Taurus, but I don’t follow my horoscope

Let me know if you do this on your blog!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Sky Watch Friday

Welcome to my 4th Sky Watch Friday! I had to go in the archives for this one. I haven't had any good sky shots for a couple of weeks.

This picture was taken in February at Biltmore House in Asheville, North Carolina. I love the cloud coverage over the house. It was a cold day with a few flurries, but we had lots of fun with our friends touring this magnificent home!

To see other Sky Watch photos, or to join in the fun, go on over and visit Tom at Wiggers World. There are a lot of wonderful photographers that participate. I just do it for fun, but some of the other photos are really fantastic!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

What was THAT?

As we were driving home from the pool yesterday, we decided to go over to our friends' house to water their flowers (they're on vacation). In order to do this, we have to drive past our road. As we were approaching our road I noticed a big black dog running down the hill toward the road I was driving on. There's a black Lab that lives toward that end of the road and I thought it was him...except that his gait was really "different." As we approached, it ran out in front of us (several feet away)across the road and into a grassy field that leads to a stream. As it ran across the road, Beth says "that's not a's a BEAR!" It was a smallish black bear! We couldn't believe it! I've never seen a bear around here, although we are hearing more and more stories of bear sightings.

Where's your camera when you need it?

Monday, June 9, 2008

Back to Work!

After two months of being out of work, Neal headed back today -- part-time!

It was really strange getting up with the alarm clock again, but it was good too. Six o'clock came awfully early though! But it's nice to be starting back into a routine...getting the kids up...having breakfast together. While Neal was off, we each did our own thing. We pretty much got up when we wanted to, and ate when we wanted to.

God bless you Neal as you get back into the "real world!" We love you!!!!!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Sky Watch Friday (on Thursday)

I'm jumping the gun here a bit. Tom doesn't even have Sky Watch up on his site (Wiggers World) yet. But check it out later, and you can see all the other Sky Watch photo links. They're really cool!

Anyway, Beth and I are getting ready to head out of town to a homeschool conference! Wahoo!!! I am so excited! This is my "jump start" for the year. I fill my tank with informative conference speakers, seeing the hundreds of other homeschoolers that attend (I'm not the only one!), seeing the well over 200 vendors in the exhibit hall, and perusing the used curriculum sale. Some people like going to sports events...give me BOOKS! :o)

So, with that all said. Here is my Sky Watch photo of the week:

This was the eclipse we witnessed several months back. This shot was taken from my back deck.

Here's another shot. Although it's blurry, I love that it shows the more vibrant color!

Have a great weekend, all!
Jeremiah 29:11

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."