Friday, June 29, 2012

I bought it!!

I learned my lesson.
I was determined to NOT leave the antique store saying 'why didn't I buy that?'!!
{if you didn't read my tale of woe, you probably should}

Here's a sneak peak of my new treasures from yesterday's antiquing adventure.

Ok, the adorable chandy is certainly a treasure ... it's just not mine.
My sweet friend snapped this baby up.
She's got a good eye.

My 2 treasures are behind it ... the crocks!!
Yep, I bought 2 crocks!!!
Happy dance ...happy dance.

I'll share some proper photos next week,
but I just couldn't wait to show you what I found.

These following things didn't come home with me ... I just thought they were picture-worthy.

Look at this adorable pantaloon style slip!

Now, brace yourself for these next 2 gals.
We giggled & giggled at these hideous things less-than-lovely dolls.

Down right scary these were! 
I fully expect to see these the next time I visit this store cause I can't imagine anyone buying them!

All in all, it was a fun day.
Looking through old things from the past & sharing memories with sweet friends 
was the best part of the day ... even better than bringing home 2 crocks.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

The Pioneer Woman Steak Sandwich

Does Ree, the Pioneer Woman, ever have a bad recipe?
I think not.

I don't own her cookbook, & haven't made lots of her recipes,
but I LOVE watching her cooking show on Saturday mornings.
Love it.
It's more than just a cooking show ... it's visually beautiful, 
she's a laid-back, homeschool momma like myself,
{ok, we have the homeschool part in common},
& this show singlehandedly sets my daydreams in motion for the week.
Not kidding.
It's not the fabulous food either.
It's the kitchen, the country, the cattle, the's even the cowboy boots.
It's the out-in-the-middle-of-nowhere that quietly calls my name.
I wouldn't be an accidental country girl.
I am a country girl {my hubs & me were both raised in the country}
who accidentally got stuck in the city ... for way too long.

Ok now ... what is this post about?
See, I've gotten caught up in my daydream & almost forgot that I was blogging a recipe!

Anyhoo...I watched an episode where Ree made this killer steak sandwich.
I so knew that my hubs & boys, who'd eat steak 24/7 if that were a possibility,
would be all over this sandwich.
And I was right.
It has gotten rave reviews.
It's easy, quick & very hearty.
You'll want to give this one a try.
The men in your life will thank you.

Since I've forgotten to take pics every.time.I', 
we'll have to settle with looking at Ree's.
No problem there...that's another thing she's excellent at:  photography.
{Disclaimer...Ree did not pay me to gush about her.}

The Pioneer Woman Steak Sandwich

The Pioneer Woman Steak Sandwich
Here's what you need:

1 lg. onion
2 sticks butter
2 -3 pounds cubed steak
seasoned salt
1/2 cup Worcestershire Sauce
Tabasco Sauce, to taste
4 whole French/deli rolls {sub buns}

Here's how easy it comes together:

{If you have an iron skillet, use it.}
Slice onions and cook in 1/4 stick butter until soft and lightly browned.
Remove and set aside.
Slice cube steak against the grain & sprinkle with seasoned salt.
Heat 2 tablespoons butter over high heat (in the skillet you used for the onions)
until melted and beginning to brown & add in the meat in single layer.
Cook one side until brown, then flip and cook until brown, about a minute on both sides.
Add 1/2 cup (at least) Worcestershire sauce, 5 to 6 shakes Tabasco,
2 tablespoons butter & the cooked onions.
Stir to combine.
Cook low & slow {about 15-20 minutes should do it} until meat is tender.
Butter halved French rolls and brown in skillet or on griddle.
To assemble, lay bottom half of roll on the plate.
Place meat mixture, followed by a spoonful of juice from the pan.
Top with other half of roll.

For our family, we think slices of mozzarella or provolone just takes this
sandwich over the top.

I've also thrown in green peppers with the onions which gives
it a Philly steak sandwich kind of flair.

And the guys here, well, they love putting horseradish {sauce} with anything beef,
so they usually add that to theirs.

Any way you slice it up, this sandwich is scrumptious!!

And go visit  The Pioneer Woman blog ... there's lots of good recipes & good reading!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Why didn't I buy that?!

I hate it when I pass on buying something that I'm iffy on ... & then decide 
{almost at the same moment that I'm pulling out of the parking lot} 
that I really should've bought it.
Then for the next several days, I pine over it.
Think that maybe, just maybe, it'll be there the next time I go 
{& lord knows when that may be}.

My general shopping theory is when in doubt, buy it!
I am a receipt keeper extraordinaire, so there's never a problem returning 
if I have buyers remorse,
or if it doesn't match, or look as good as I imagined.
However, you can't do that at antique stores.
They have that little pesky 'all sales finals' way of doing business 
that terribly cramps my style.

Lately I had just this scenario.
We were shopping at a large antique mall about 30 minutes from us.
I spotted these chippy, old vintage shutters ...big taller than me ones.
And they were cheap!
I himmed & hawwed ...thinking where I might use them ...
and ultimately, I walked away.

They looked very similar to these.
Another booth had these neat old scales ... & we all know how 'in' scales are right now.
I wasn't too super thrilled with the eagle painted on each side.
I know I could've painted over it, but that's just not me.
If I find a vintage piece, I really hate to mess with it.
I figure if it's been this way for all these years, who am I to go changing it up.
Again, I walked on.

The ones I passed on were kinda like this.

I guess the other item that lingers in my mind was a pretty good sized crock
{I have a new crock interest}.
It was probably pretty reasonably priced, but I hadn't done much homework on crocks 
& really didn't want to pay 30 something for it.
Knowing what I know now, I should've bought it.

It kinda looked like the crock with the 6 on it, only I think it had a greyish 3, no circle.

I did, however, recently find this little dude at Goodwill {$1.99}.
It doesn't completely soothe my sorrowful heart for passing on the other one, 
but it did a little.

Thank heavens though, not all my shopping trips have ended on a 'why didn't I buy that' note!
Here's a look at a few of the goodies I've picked up over the last month or so.

Got these little miniature forks, spoons, & knife.
I'm not sure what they are made of, but they aren't plastic ...they say made in Germany.
I am also not sure why I even bought them ...ha.
I just thought they were cute & I may be able to do something with them.

As for the ladybug buttons, these will be cute on some Shabby Bowtique accessories.
I paid $1.50 for both, so it definitely didn't break the bank.

These little miniature jars are soo adorable.
They do not have lids, but at $1.95 each, they had to come home with me.
How perfect will these be with some fresh-cut flowers inside.

I am a huge fan of Charles Schulz.
When I saw this lil' book at Goodwill {for .69}, I had to pick it up & look at it.
The title intrigued me.

Another cool thing, it's from Warner Press in Anderson, IN, my hometown.

This is in the front of the book ... how cute is this?!
He's all worn out by the time they get to the 4th verse!

I want to do some research on this book ... & see if there are others similar to it.

Lastly, I love plate holders & multi-level serving trays {or whatever they're called}.
Do I need another one, no ... but this one was just so cute.
Guess I was in a miniature mood cause this is sorta miniature too.
Each tier is about the size of a saucer.

It's a little on the frilly side, but I'm glad I bought it.

It was only $10, but the best thing about it is this: it folds up to {almost} nothing!
Believe me, this is the only way I could constitute buying another one of these dealies.

So, note to self ...think long & hard before passing things up at the antique store!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Lemon Tartlets

I am a huge fan of lemon.
Lemon anything.!

Let me tell ya, this little dessert did not disappoint.
It is pure lemon lushiousness!

Recently, we were on a road trip through Amish country 
& we stopped at this little roadside store.
There were these large sleeves of pie filling & the lemon one 
just somehow found it's way into my hand.

After much thought & deliberation, I decided to make some little pies lemon tartlets.
Although they sound & look incredibly faaancy, they could not be easier to put together
... no 'french pastry chef' degree necessary.

First, I started with a box pie crust.
These things are so versatile.

Roll out the dough & cut out circles.
Simple ... a kindergartner could do it.
My cutter outer: this handy-dandy glass.

The circles should be, well, just about this size.

All the left-over dough should be squooshed together, like so.

Roll it out & viola, 2 more tartlet shells.

Next, after lightly spraying a regular-sized muffin pan, place each circle in place.

Bake according to the box directions.

Golden perfection.

This is where it gets tricky.
Snip off the end of the pie filling & fill each of the cooled tartlet shells.
Be sure & hold your mouth just the right way while you're filling these ;)

I decided to take these little delights to our fellowship meal at church.
These lovely lemon tartlets needed to be shared!
I served them on my green & white palm leaf dish for the perfect color compliment.

 Aren't these caaute?!

For the final over-the-top step, top with a small fluff of whipped cream.
{Use the kind in the can to make these cute little flower shapes}

Oh, I am in love with this dessert.
It was easy, adorable, & delicious.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

I Am Most Compassionate When ...

I read a status yesterday on Facebook.
It was short & sweet, but message it conveyed was so beautiful
that it stuck with me all day.
Here it is in my words:

When my children are sick, suffering, or hurting, 
that's when I am at my most compassionate.
Just think of the compassion coming from our heavenly Father 
to us, His children, when we are going through these same emotions.

Can't we mommas so easily relate to this?

When my sons were babies & were fussing during the night with a tummy ache,
I wanted nothing more than to soothe away their pain.
I held, rocked, softly sang, prayed, cuddled ...
anything I could think of to bring relief.

When they were toddlers & would wind up getting bumps, bruises, boo-boos,
I would make over them with hugs & kisses like it was the most serious injury in the world. 
That would somehow make it all better.

And now that they are older {teenagers}, 
they've experienced all sorts of hurts throughout the years.
There have been misunderstandings, broken hearts, hurt feelings,  
the tragedy of losing a close friend, family drama, & church turmoil.
Oh for the days when a band-aid & a kiss would do the trick.

Although it's been much tougher to understand these kinds of hurts,
I've done my best to comfort & console them ... 
giving them words of encouragement that everything would be alright.
And yes, there's still been plenty of hugs & kisses.
They are still my babies, no matter if they are teenagers.

As I was scanning through the years in my mind, 
acknowledging how easily & naturally the compassion kicked in for my children 
during these times of heartache & suffering,
I immediately felt the comforting presence of the Lord.
He is my heavenly father ... & I am His child.

I hurt, I cry, I suffer.

How comforting to know that He is looking & attending to me with compassion!

He sympathizes with me! 
He is touched by the feelings of my infirmities!
{Hebrews 4:15}

Doesn't that make you want to run to Him?!
To run into His arms as a child & to get as close to Him as possible ...
to hear Him whisper, "Rest in Me ... everything is going to be alright."

There's a song I've loved since I was a young girl ... & the words say this:
"He just takes me in His arms & holds me.
He reaches down to wipe the teardrops from my eyes.
He just takes me in His arms & holds me.
Ever so gentle til the feelings all subside."

He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.
Psalm 147:3

Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord unto me.


Tuesday, June 19, 2012

New Outside Lights

Our trip to 
in search of the perfect pendant & ceiling light, sadly, was a bust. 
I'd seen just what I wanted for my kitchen on a blog, 
& she said it was from Lowe's, but it was a no-go here.

But we did not leave completely disappointed!
Our outside lights were much in need of replacing.
James has wanted these yicky brass ones gone as long as we've lived here.

Looking pretty dirty & ugly weather-worn.

So, instead of new kitchen lights, we walked out with these.

No, we don't have a log cabin, or even a lodgy home, per se ... but we wish we did!
We do have some lodgy influences throughout our home though, 
& an over-all 'manly' look going on, so we knew these lanterns would fit in just fine.

We replaced all three ... two in the front & one in the back.
And here is how they look!
Absolutely LOVE!

Now, if only we had a cool running stream & a few cattle grazing to go along with these.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Our Father's Daycation

We escaped for a much needed get-away to Cincinnati on Saturday.
James & the boys have been working waaaay too many hours, 
{even could've been working on Saturday}, 
but James thought we needed a family day out.
Boy, did we ever.

I decided to take full-advantage of the situation & tie it all in to Father's Day.

James has a very favorite restaurant but it's an hour and a half away, 
so we don't get to go too often.
I knew this was a perfect time to go.
The bonus is that there are some other fun places that we like to visit when 
we're in that neck of the woods.
So, the Father's Daycation was planned.

Here are some photos from our fun family day celebrating James.

1st stop:  Bass Pro Shop ... this is always a hit!
{ok, technically the 1st stop was at White Castle, but that's not super blog-worthy.}

I leave Bass Pro wanting to redecorate my house all lodgy.

See why?
Aren't these lanterns to die for?!

Next stop:  JUNGLE JIM'S!
We LOVE this place!!

If you've never been, it's a grocery store extraordinaire, to put it mildly!
I totally think you can find anything & everything there!
They call it a 'foodies paradise' & I think that about sums it up.

You can read more about it here & I previously blogged about it here.

We are cheese aficionados, so much time is spent in the aisles & aisles ... aisles of cheese.
Thought these cheddar cheeses were the cutest ever.

Here are the boys making their selections.
All in all, we walked away with 9 or 10 varieties. about wheels of parmesan!


This is one big cheese ... hanging from the ceiling all the way to the floor!


On to the olive bar.
James is in heaven.

This caught my eye in the candy section.
Hmm, wonder why?!

I remember these from when I was a kid ...candy cigarettes!
Oh brother.


Garrett & Carissa will appreciate this one ... 
a 5 pound gummy bear, coming in at a whopping $30!


Goodbye to Jungle Jim's ... til the next time.


Now, for the REAL reason we came to Cincinnati ...Vincenzo's!
If you want some authentic northern Italian food, you have got to come here!

Happy Father's Day to my sweetheart!!


Our dinners were delicious & definitely picture-worthy, 
but it's pretty dimly lit & my camera just wouldn't cooperate =(
This is the only one worth posting ...of the ciabatta rolls & water decanter.


We had such a wonderful Father's daycation  ... laughing & making memories.