Friday, December 28, 2012

The View

It's hard to decide which window to sit in front of and relax.  I am surrounded with beauty this week.  Luckily I don't have to venture out in it, only to take a walk.

The birds have consumed all of the remaining sunflower seeds I had. (should have stocked up)  Hubby stopped on the way home yesterday and bought a small bag of bird seed. 

Have you ever listened to the ice covered trees sway in the breeze.  The sound they make should really be recorded.  It is beautiful.

The swimming pool is almost totally covered and folks it is built up several feet off the ground.

The fountain is in the middle of a circle drive and somewhere under all the snow is a rock lined flowerbed!!

I started the task of packing decorations away this morning.  Such a mess.  Had a few boxes out to pack up when my husband brought two carpenter friends of his over to build shelves and racks in our closets. I am so excited but I can truthfully say that every room in the house now is a disaster!! I never knew how much stuff i could stick in a closet until I had to empty them out.  Oh well, it will be nice when it's done. And it's not like I had anything else to do......except to look at Christmas pictures, read blogs....browse pinterest... tweet... play games on phone.......instagram!!  (love instagram)  I am vickiewallace1 on twitter and instagram, follow along and I'd love to follow you all.  It's quick and easy.

I hope you all are having a great day and staying warm.  Freezing rain falling here.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Blizzard Watch

Hello, hello!
I am still alive and kicking! ha   Three months have passed without a post.  I truly got out of the habit. I tried to check in occasionally but that didn't work very well either.  No excuses, just got busy and had lots of fun.
I'll fill you in as time goes by but for today let's talk Christmas and Blizzard!

We were placed under a severe winter weather watch on Christmas Eve with possibility of blizzard.  I had to laugh at that cause I had windows up while cooking dinner.  It was so hot.  Yesterday afternoon I wasn't laughing.  Around 3 PM it started to rain mixed with sleet.  By 4 PM our power was out.  Just after dark the blizzard arrived. Hubby drove down the road to see if anyone had power and when he returned his tracks were already filled with snow.  It was brutal.  No heat all night and the gas logs decided to go on strike during the outage.  Got pretty cool during the night but with lots of blankets on the bed, we survived.  My only worry was where will my morning coffee come from.  Hubby (electrician) thought the situation over during the night and bypassed something and turned something off....etc, etc and got the lights and outlets on by 7:30 this morning....whew.  Coffee, but no heat.  I can survive that.  With 200,000 people without electricity I didn't have much hope for it but miraculously the power was on by noon.  "Good Job Entergy"

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas.  We certainly did.  The family was all here for Christmas Eve.  We had a delicious dinner then opened presents.  Little ones sure make Christmas special.

It seems like yesterday that Lacey and Jackson were toddlers and now look at them.
16 and

Lila is 3 years 4 months old and Brooks is 7 1/2 months.....I'm afraid to blink or they will be 16 and 13.

We tried to get a group photo and let me tell you that is no easy task.  Photographers earn every penny they charge to get little ones to look at the camera and be still......

Lila was so interested in Lacey's pretty hair that she could care less about looking at the camera.  Then she ran off. Lots of exploring to do in Nanny's yard.  She calls it going on an adventure.  (yes, straight from Jake and the Neverland Pirates)

With 3 adults trying to arrange them and snap shots quickly we did manage to get one or two good ones

These are our first shots of the four of them together.  Can you imagine how thrilled I am to have these pictures.  Time goes by so fast that you just have to stop and capture it for all time.

Such a fun day.  

Tomorrow (or soon)  I will show you the blizzard photos.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012


Every year when the nights get cool, then gnats find me!  They are so annoying.
They fly in front of my face (just to further annoy me)  I swat, clap, hit but have yet to actually get one.  I clap like I am fighting a large animal  and never catch one. 

So today I googled gnats and how to get rid of them. 

I knew it had to do with cooler temperatures, moisture and ripe fruit.  A damp dish cloth or towel gets covered in no time.  My banana's seemed very attractive to them so I put them in the fridge today, only to read that that is not a good idea.  Pests can get in there with them. 

A couple of ideas sounded real interesting.

1. Place some fruit juice in a bottle with lid.  Put a hole in lid and just wait on them to fly in, which they will very rapidly.  Shake the bottle to drown them, then wait for more.  When bottle gets too repulsive, start over with fresh juice.

2.  Turn an almost empty wine bottle on it's side and wait, they can't find their way out.  They love wine (guess they aren't dumb)

3.  Clean the drains with foaming drain cleaner.  (guaranteed to work)

Is anyone else having this problem?  It's the one thing I don't enjoy about this wonderful weather!

Ok, I'm off to clean the drains and have some wine.......ha

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Happy Flowers

Cooler temperatures and rain have brought everything back to life.  I thought I had lost all of my flowers and there was no doubt about my little garden.  Was I ever wrong.  The roses and lantanas have never been prettier.  The pepper plants in the garden turned green, started blooming and soon (if it doesn't freeze) I will have fresh peppers. 

It is such a blessing to have the drought of 2012 behind us! Whew, it was brutal.

Have a wonderful Sunday, all.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Vacation to remember!

I'm back.

From where you say?

Back in front (odd choice of words) of my computer.  I have not sat here in weeks. 

September seemed to be a flash.  First the preparation for a family reunion held at our house.  Work, cooking, repeat!

Then I actually got away from it all for 5 wonderful days.  I have to warn you about the pictures to follow (several) but I have some that I need to share.  I'll try to be brief.

In years past, we always went to Seaside, Seagrove area in June, July or August.  Hot weather, hot sand, crowded beaches, crowded restaurants, slow traffic, fun, uh? 

I have a secret to let you in on........GO IN SEPTEMBER!  Temperatures in the low 80's, very few people on the beaches, no waiting at restaurants, NO TRAFFIC! 

  I enjoyed my morning coffee listening to the waves and watching the sunrise.

Later in the morning, we brought the chairs, etc and picked the perfect spot.....It was all ours for the choosing.

The beach was a perfect place for Lila to run about.  And run she did.  That girl played so hard all day jumping waves and running in and out of the water that she was more than ready to go to bed in the evening.
(I was too, ha)

Mr B got his toes in the sand for the first time.  He enjoyed nice long naps in the tent.  That ocean breeze does it every time.

My son in law did all of the cooking.  I think I fried some bacon one morning and that was the extent of it.
I always new he was good but never realized just how good til this week.  We had a shrimp boil one night that we loved so much he repeated it the next night.  He made fresh crab cakes (his Nana's recipe) that melted in your mouth.  Oh how  I love crab cakes!  When he didn't cook we partook of the happy hour specials: $5.00/dozen raw oysters!  Another love of mine.  OK, I'm ready to go back now!

One evening we had a mini photo shoot at sunset.  Just look at this sweet family.......

And since I have been accused of never putting a picture of me on here, I will share the girls shot.

This shot is one of my favorites.  It depicts the beauty and the solitude of my vacation.
Can you tell how much I enjoyed the week.   I needed it.  Thank you for letting Nanny join you on your getaway.

I leave you with a sunset that was so pretty it  didn't seem real.  I opened all of these shots on photo shop and thought wow, no edits needed!  The scenery spoke for itself.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Birthday Girl

A few days ago while we were all together, we had an impromptu, early party for my sweetpea. Tomorrow is her 3rd, yes 3rd birthday. So hard to believe.  You have brought so much joy into our lives. I hope you have a perfect day and I can't wait to hear all about it.

We started to sing and that's all it took

At least she didn't cry. (her mother did every year)   
Please hurry and stop singing that sad song!

Now let's get these candles out and have some fun!

Happy  Happy Birthday Lila.
Nanny sends you a big hug and a kiss.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Starting Over

Let's try this again...... Out with the dried up spring flowers and in with some fall plants.
Trying to bring color to my deck.  I love mums and these should do the the trick. Add a pot
of lantana for contrast and voila.....color.  My hydrangea is loving the cooler temperature and
is sprouting like crazy.  I too am enjoying the under 100 temperatures.  Even though the summer
has been unbearable, there's something about the feel of fall in the air that makes me kinda sad.
I'll get over it, but it happens every year at this time.  I just hate to give up on my time of the year.
I'm not giving up yet.....still have a trip to the beach coming up.  This will be a first for me, beach in
September!  Can't wait!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Spot Light

I love the way the sun can be a spot light. 
This morning it chose the huge old tree to be it's subject. 
This tree is so beautiful in every season.  Green to gold to finally brown. 
This year has been tough on it.  It went from green to brown in a matter of weeks.
I think the sun and this tree were having a conversation about the situation.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Quick and Tasty

I love Lean Cuisine!  
They aren't many flavors I don't buy.  
These are my current favorites.  
For lunch I have a serving of each for a 400 calorie plate.  
Have you tried these?
The sky is gray today and thunder is rolling all around. 
Pure fall feeling.
Love it!

Monday, August 13, 2012



I Choose Before!!!

Friday, August 10, 2012


The last couple of days and the weekend I'm doing what I love best! 

 Being a Nanny!

I hope you all are having fun, too!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Honolulu and Dallas

I LOVED, LOVED Honolulu by Alan Brennert.  This book deserves 'loved' in capital letters.   It's just one of those books that sucks you in from page 1.  It's one that I could read late at night and not want to put it down.

Honolulu tell the story of Regret, born to a traditional Korean family. Male children were valued over females, and daughters had names like Sorrow, Anger, and Pity.  Regret flees to Hawaii to meet her handsome husband promised to her as a picture bride.  Only to endure more abuse in paradise, this story spands her entire lifetime.

Classified as historical fiction, Alan Brennert explains that various events in the novel are accurate.

I enjoyed every page of Honolulu as I did Moloka'i, also by Brennert.

I was so sad when I read the last words....I didn't want it to ever end.....Why did I read it so fast?

Don't let the summer end without adding Honolulu to your reading list.

Tomorrow night is the season finale of Dallas!  There is a marathon all day tomorrow showing the entire season.  If you are one of the ones waiting to see if it was good......set your dvrs!  Cause it's good, and has been renewed for another season.  WooHoo!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Looking for food

I have been seeing this beautiful threesome almost daily. They are looking for green grass and water. Bless their hearts, it's hard to find this summer. They get closer and closer to the house during their search.

I also have a growing family of rabbits hopping around. I just love to watch them. Trixie does too, but she gives them a chase for their money. She can't get close to them....thank goodness! I've been throwing out lettuce leaves near the edge of the trees and they disappear quickly. I don't know which family decided to have these lilies for a meal but was I shocked when I saw this:


The flowers were long gone, but the stems were still green and pretty. Pretty appetizing, I imagine! Another species looking for food really bothers me! Take a look at this:

What a difference 3 1/2 months makes around here. Take a look at this shot taken April 16th.

Do you see the tops of the tree/limbs barely out of the water?
 Look at those trees now.

Sadly, we have had the pond this low before and miraculously we still had live catfish the next spring. I've heard they bury themselves in the mud to survive. Hence the name Mudcat!

Have a great Monday all!!

Friday, August 3, 2012

Eye Catching

Yes, as I strolled the aisles of Wal Mart my eyes were drawn to this pretty green box.  Wow, everything I need to make a key lime pie in one box.....and into the buggy it went.

I always share tasty good products I find with you so in keeping things real I need to warn you about this pretty box!

As I was making the crust I imagined it would not set up and crumble to pieces when served.  Wrong!  I had to chisel a piece from the pan.  Moving on to the filling. There was a slight flavor of lime, nothing special but almost OK. (almost)  Now the topping......artificial tasting, white yucky cream with absolutely NO flavor. None.  One piece for me, one for Carrie and the rest down the disposal!

Don't be suckered into buying the pretty green box folks! 

Anyone know how to make a heading smaller than mine....It's huge and I can't figure out how to make it smaller!  Help.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

So Long, Farewell!

I've said a loud goodbye to the awful, awful JULY!  Twenty days in June and July were above 100 degrees!  It seems to me that there were many more but that's what the weather guys say! I never, never look forward to fall but good gosh I can't wait for it to arrive this year.  We still haven't had any rain to speak of....a short shower is all we get and feel lucky to have that.  I have mowed the dead leaves (a job I usually do around Thanksgiving) and just gaze out at the brown grass and bare trees...sad sight.

It's been a chore to try and stay cool this summer.  In spite of the heat I have managed to have some indoor fun.  Visits with the kids have been great. Lila is enjoying all arts and crafts.  Her new found ability to cut is her favorite.  I just wonder how long it will be until she decides to take this skill to a higher level and style her hair? I can still see her mother's half gone bangs........

 We spent time on manicures and pedicures.  Talk about a girly much fun.

Mr B is growing up right before our eyes.  Hard to believe in 8 days he will be three months old.  It's flying by.  Talk about a sweet little boy.  Just talk to him and he lights up.  I call him Happy, Happy, Happy!

When he hears Mom's voice the smile that covers his face makes Nanny's heart melt.

I hope you all are having a fun summer with cooler weather than Arkansas.......

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Monday, July 9, 2012


We haven't talked gadgets lately. One of my favorites is this handy dandy squeezer/masher thing..... I use to use the lid from the tuna can for this step. It wasn't a safe thing to do and really didn't work well. I got mine at Bed, Bath and Beyond and love it. You can put some water on top and more or less rinse your tuna, if you so choose.

Another favorite is my Vidalia Chop Wizard.  It seems I have to chop an onion, bell pepper, celery, etc. daily.  Today I used it to chop an apple for the tuna.  I love the sweetness and crunch an apple adds.

This was my first time to try it for boiled eggs.  Voila, it worked perfectly.

My gadgets make life a little easier. ha......
If I could chop like they do on Food Network I probably would but I can't, so I turn to my chopper.

Makes a great tuna salad.  Everything is chopped to the same size.  You know that is a requirement/ha
Blogger is acting strange....imagine that.
I can't get below this picture to add more lines.
So.......have a good day, all.
I'm off to have a tuna sandwich with lettuce and tomato.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Bumble Bees and Waterfalls

I'll have to say that my miniature crepe myrtle doesn't seen to have suffered in this heat.
I water it often as I have to add water to our little waterfall daily.  It seems to evaporate as fast as I add it.
The birds love to hop in and splash around.  They are so much fun to watch.

The bumble bees love, love the blooms on the crepe myrtle.  I've learned one thing about them, they are as hard to get a shot of as hummingbirds    They aren't still long at all.

Have a great weekend, all.  Wasn't it just Saturday a couple of days ago???

The weatherman promised (yes, I'm holding him to his words)  that this is the LAST day of this heatwave!!
Rain in the forecast.....I repeat....Rain in the forecast!  It's enough to make me want to jump up and down!  Better not though, ha. Don't want to injure the other knee!!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

More of the same

I really hate to be a Debbie Downer......
I am not a pessimistic person......
My glass is always half full.......
Life Is Good........


This is getting me down.....

And then you add THIS to the picture......

Brown Arkansas = Persist or intensify!

Spring and summer are my seasons.  Well they use to be my seasons.  To see every living plant, grass, and  trees dry up and die is depressing me very much. I don't know how to snap out of this state of mind.  Suggestions?

I hope you all have a Happy and Safe 4th of July.  I'll be staying inside, I don't like 100+ winds, no sir!

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Hot, Hot, Hot

It's beginning to look like fall!! But it isn't!! This is June in Arkansas! The leaves are rapidly turning gold then brown. The drought continues. We had a shower 4 or 5 weeks ago (I forget the date).

The grass crunches when you walk on it.

The forecast doesn't offer any relief.
Thursday - 106
Friday - 106
Saturday - 104
Sunday - 100

My prayer is that no fires are carelessly started. Hot and dry, we can survive. The awful fires that Colorado is experiencing is another story. 

The local sale barn has been filled with cattle from this area.  The hay fields have all dried up forcing the ranchers to sell.  Sad!

Stay cool folks! 

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

From My Grill to Yours!

Satisfaction guaranteed.

As you prepare your 4th of July menus, if you are looking for a good kabob recipe, try these....I repeat, try these.  We couldn't get enough of them last week and I'm having them again this weekend.

For the chicken:

 Easy Italian chicken Marinade

 3-4 lbs boneless chicken
 1 (16 oz) bottle Italian salad dressing
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice 1/3 cup honey
1/4 cup worcestershire sauce
 2 tsp paprika
 Marinate chicken for 6 hours or overnight and grill.

For the beef:

Shish Kabob Marinade

1 cup soy sauce (I use lite)
1/2 cup brown sugar
 1/2 cup vinegar
 1/2 cup pineapple juice
 2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
beef, chunked
Mix all ingredients and bring to a boil. Let cool.
 Marinate feef in mixture a minimum of 4 hours.

 I love to have fresh pineapple with the chicken. Baby bella mushrooms, grape tomatoes, sweet red and yellow peppers and you can't omit slices of purple onion on the beef and chicken.
It all grills so well and the flavors are........sigh!!
 Easy, Easy and oh so delicious.
 It's hard to say which one is better!
You just have to have one of each!