Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Girls Just Wanna Have Fun

My little girl is growing up. Sometimes too fast. Sometimes not fast enough. Lately I have really been trying to be intentional about spending quality time with Mackaylan each and everyday as I feel kids often spell love "T-I-M-E." Yesterday Mackaylan and I had a fun afternoon playing "baseball" in the backyard. Nothing beats hearing the thrill of excitement and seeing her confidence soar each time she hit the ball. And then to top it all off, at one point she looked up at me with those baby blue eyes and a big smile on her face and said, "I love playing baseball with you, Mama!" It was in that moment I was reassured that the laundry could wait, dinner could be a little later, the house could be dusty and emails and phone calls could go unanswered. I knew I was doing exactly what needed to be done!

Below are a few pictures of our fun afternoon together. Mackaylan assisted with writing and typing the words about each picture.

This is me with my new toy.
It is a bat.

This is me swinging the bat!

I am looking at mommy.

I am holding a bat and ball.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Works-For-Me Wednesday!

What do you do with your old Christmas cards? Many people reuse them in various types of craft projects like ornaments, cards, etc. This year, I stumbled upon a wonderful idea that I thought I would share with you- my avid readers. Haha! Now that all of our Christmas cards have been taken off of display, I have placed them in a basket on the table. Each night before dinner we will pull out one card and pray for that particular family. We will spend time thanking God for each member of the family and for their friendship. We will pray for their health, safety, relationships with one another and with Christ, and any other requests that we know of. I think this will be a meaningful way to keep the spirit of Chrismas alive on into the new year! This idea definitely Works-For-Me!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Our "Not-So-Snowy" Day!

I can't believe it didn't snow! There is not even one little flake on the ground at our house!! I thought I would wake up this morning, peek out the window, and see a world of white. Needless to say, I was very dissappointed when I got up out of the bed at 3:40 AM to survey my surroundings and nothing looked any different. However, we are still out of school due to snow in other parts of the county so I am trying to take advantage of another day home and get some more organizing/cleaning accomplished. So far this is what I have "tackled:"

1- Made bed and picked up bedroom.
2- Cleaned out hall closet.
3- Cleaned out closet in "office."
4- Folded a load of laundry and put another load in the washing machine.
5- Posted pics of the top of my newly decorated china hutch. I actually completed this project yesterday, but thought I would post the pics today. My BFF Dawn assisted with the shopping, but left it up to me to do the actual decorating this time. She is all about scaffolding me through Decorating w/ Dawn 101!
Not bad since it is only 10:00AM! What's on your list for Tackle it Tuesday?

Monday, January 19, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

Today has been a marvelous Monday! I love days when I can pretend to be a SAHM! Mackaylan and I tackled lots of projects, did a little shopping, spent time with friends and just had a great time being together! And to top it all off they are calling for ** SNOW** tomorrow! YIPPEE!

Well, it is Monday so you know what that means....Menu Plan Monday! Take a recipe, try it out and let me know what you think. Then head on over to Organizing Junkie to see what others have on their menu for the week! :)

Monday- Santa Fe Grits Bake/ Applesauce/ Homemade Cinnamon Rolls
Tuesday- To Die For Beef Tips/ Rice/ Black-eyed Peas
Wednesday- Crockpot Cheeseburgers/ Chips/Applesauce
Thursday- Chicken Tetrazini/ Lima Beans/ Crescent Rolls
Friday/Saturday- Dinner plans w/ friends
Sunday- Leftover Buffet

Santa Fe Grits Bake
5 cups water
1 t. salt
1/2 t. hot sauce
1 13/ c. uncooked, regular grits
16 oz. Velveeta cheese
1/3 c. butter
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1 can chopped green chiles, undrained
1 lb. breakfast sausage

1. Boil first three ingredients; gradually stir in grits. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally until thickened. Remove from heat; add cheese and butter. Stir until melted. Stir in eggs, chiles and sausage.
2. Pour into lightly greased 13x9 in baking dish.
3. Bake at 350 for 45 minutes or until puffed and golden. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

To Die for Crockpot Beef Tips
1 pkg. beef tips
1 pkg. dried brown gravy mix
1 pkg. dried Italian dressing mix
1 pkg. dried ranch mix
1/2 c. water

1. Place beef tips in crockpot.
2. Mix together all mixes and water. Pour over tips.
3. Cook on low 7-9 hours.

Crockpot Cheeseburgers
1 1/2 lbs. ground beef
1/4 t. garlic salt
1/2 t. black pepper
2 T. milk
1 T. mustard
1 T. pickle relish
8 oz. Velveeta Cheese

1. Brown the ground beef and drain.
2. Spray crockpot w/ non-stick cooking spray.
3. Place the cooked ground beef into the crockpot followed by the garlic salt, pepper, milk, mustard, relish and cheese. Stir to combine.
4. Cover and cook on low for 2-3 hours. Serve on hamburger buns.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

One of my goals for 2009 is to plan our weekly meals each week and to only buy the ingredients needed at the grocery store. So many times I go to the grocery store w/o a plan and end up purchasing many items that we don't need or already have. So, here is our weekly meal plan for this week. What's for dinner in your neck of the woods?

Monday- Honey Grilled Shrimp/Baked Potatoes
Tuesday- Spaghetti/Salad/Garlic Breadsticks
Wednesday- Crockpot Angel Chicken/Green Beans/Biscuits
Thursday- McDonalds before Elmo Live!
Friday- Chicken Tetrazzini/Black-eyed Peas/Crescent Rolls

Honey Grilled Shrimp

1/2 t. garlic powder
1/4 T black pepper
1/3 c. Worcestershire sauce
2 T. dry white wine
2 T. Italian salad dressing
1 lb. shrimp, peeled, deveined w/ tails attached
1/4 c. honey
1/4 c. melted butter
2 T. Worcestershire sauce

1. Mix together garlic powder, black pepper, 1/3 c. Worcestershire sauce, wine and salad dressing; add shrimp, and toss to coat. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for 1 hour.

2. Preheat grill for high heat. Thread shrimp onto skewers, piercing once near the tail and once near the head. Discard marinade.

3. In a small bowl, stir together honey, melted butter and remaining 2 T. Worcestershire sauce. Set aside for basting.

4. Lightly oil grill grate. Grill shrimp for 3 minutes per side, or until opaque. Baste occassionally with the honey-butter sauce while grilling.

Crockpot Angel Chicken

6 boneless chicken breasts, thawed
1/2 c. butter
1 pkg. Italian salad dressing
1 can Golden Mushroom soup
1/2 c. white wine
4 oz. cream cheese
pkg. angel hair pasta (cook according to directions on box)

1. Place chicken in crockpot.

2. In sauce pan, melt butter. Stir in Italian dressing mix, soup, cream cheese and wine.

3. Pour sauce over chicken.

4. Cook on low for 4-5 hours.

5. Shred chicken and mix with cooked, angel hair pasta.

Chicken Tetrazzini

4 oz. cooked spaghetti
2 c. cooked chicken
1 c. chicken broth
8 oz. sour cream
1 can cream of celery soup
Grated Cheddar cheese

1. Mix all ingredients, except cheese.

2. Top with grated cheese.

3. Bake at 350F for 45 minutes.

You can check out more menus at http://orgjunkie.com/ Enjoy!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

What a weekend!!!!

It all started on Friday morning when Mickey came into the bathroom as I was getting ready to go to work. "Be ready @ 5:30. You need to wear something nice and have your clothes packed for the night. Don't worry about picking up KK. My mom will take care of it." At the time I was still half asleep so I think my reaction was, "Huh?" So.... he repeated himself, kissed me good-bye and off he went to work. For the rest of the day all I could wonder was, "What in the world did this husband of mine have up his sleeve?"

Fast foward to 5:30 pm. We left the house. Our bags were packed and we were both dressed in, what I would call, Sunday clothes. We stopped and fueled up the Trailblazer and headed up I-26 West into Asheville, NC. My heart stopped when we pulled into the Mariott Renaissance because that is where we stayed on the first night of our honeymoon. Being the hopeless romantic that I am, this scored Mickey some major points! Anyway, we checked into the hotel, took our bags up to the room, freshened up and then headed out to dinner. We ate dinner at a wonderful restaurant called Frankie Bones. We enjoyed fresh, warm bread with their signature butter, stuffed mushrooms, and we both had a steak dinner. I had a filet mignon and you could cut it with a knife. Trust me, it was to die for! We opted out of dessert because we are not really sorbet/cappucinno type of people, but we wouldn't have been able to eat anymore if we tried. After dinner we returned to the hotel, called to check-in on KK and turned in for the night......

On Saturday morning, we enjoyed a lazy morning around the hotel. No shows to turn on. Breakfast to prepare. House to clean. Clothes to wash. I finished reading one of my 12 books that I have set out to read this year and Mickey caught up on what was happening in the news. Once we checked out of the hotel we ate breakfast at Cracker Barrel and visited my cousin Kelly at work. Then we headed up to Mars Hill, NC to Mars Hill College. We rode around, I reminisced, snapped some pictures and visited the bookstore. Mickey bought me a new decal for my car and a hooded sweatshirt. It was so fun to be able to see how the college campus had changed since I was there 8 years ago.
By the time we were finished at MHC it was around 1:00 so we decided we should start our trek home. We stopped in Asheville and Hendersonville and did some shopping, and then took the scenic route down the mountain to Tryon, NC. Once we were in Tryon, we rode up Melrose Mtn., admired the views and some of the lovely homes, and even caught sight of a beautiful rainbow!
On Saturday night, I was treated to a romantic candle-lit dinner with some of our best friends. Mickey and I arrived to "pick up" Dawn and Russell around 6:45pm. Dawn came out to the car and tied a blindfold around my eyes. (Yes, I was having flashbacks to my sorority days..) However, I cooperated. We got in the car and rode around for a while. I thought we were going out to dinner, but we ended up back at their house much to my surprise! Dawn had everything so beautifully decorated, h'ordeurves prepared, a meal of salad, pork tenderloin, her special mashed potatoes, garlic and cheese biscuits and homemade cupcakes for dessert. Jammy and Raegan joined us at dinner and we all had a wonderful time full of fun, fellowship and fabulous food! After dinner, we played Dominoes, talked, and laughed until our sides hurt!
Needless to say, by the time Sunday rolled around I couldn't imagine things getting much better! However, I was treated to a delictable lunch at my in-laws' home with my sister-in-law Betsi and our friends, the Bakers! Betsi, my sister-in-law, and I have the same birthday so we usually have a joint celebration. We ate lots of food, cake, pie and opened presents. And then after church, we went to El Sureno with my sister and her family, our friends the Caldwells, the Allen family, the Ridings, my mom and Dawn and Isaac. This is a Sunday tradition and one that I was not willing to break, especially on my birthday!
Whew, what a weekend! I never knew turning 30 could be so much fun! I am so fortunate to be surrounded with such wonderful people in my life who love and accept me unconditionally! God has blessed me so much in the past 30 years. I can't wait to see what He has in store in the years to come!!!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Friday's Fave Five

I love the idea of blogging about 5 of my favorite things from this past week. It will definitely be hard to pinpoint only 5 of my faves, but I will give it a try. Be sure to check out Suzanne's blog to read her favorites from the week as well.

So...here it goes:

1- Being home with my family. Mickey, Mackaylan and I have had a great week together. We have spent time cleaning, playing, organizing, eating out, looking at Christmas lights, and the list goes on. I love the fact that Mickey saves most of his vacation days until the end of the year b/c we can all be home together after the busy holiday season. Did I mention we even had breakfast in bed this morning? What could be better than waking up to a wonderful husband and waffles? Wow, what a way to start 2009! :)

2- My BFF Dawn. What can I say? I just love this girl!!! We were able to spend a lot of time together over this holiday season. Today we took the kiddos and ventured to the mall. We had a blast looking for deals and chatting. After that we stopped by her mom's shop (A Gift for All Seasons for those in the area) and I purchased a few items for the house. Then Dawn came back and worked her magic! Just look at some of her handiwork:
3- Blogging. I haven't been in the "blogging world" very long, but am quickly becoming addicted. I love posting the latest happenings in the O'Shields' world and also reading other blogs for tips, recipes, etc. Along those same lines, I love the new look of our blog. I worked really hard learning how to manipulate the layers in Adobe Photoshop to pull that top photo off! :)

4- Having my house clean and in order. As I mentioned earlier, Mickey and I have spent a lot of time this week cleaning, organizing, etc. I have even planned our menu for the entire month of January. Now, I just need to head to the grocery store to buy what we need and actually cook what is on the menu! :)

5- Bonfire/New Year's Celebration. We had some of our closest friends over for a New Year's Eve bonfire. You can check the pics below of our fun evening. On New Year's Day we went to my wonderful in-laws for dinner. Pop-O made some delicious ribs and Grams whipped up some of her infamous mashed potatoes. We had a fun evening just "hanging out" with the family! I just love the excitement and anticipation of what a new year brings!

Well, those are my Friday's Fave Five? What from your week have you enjoyed?

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year

Happy New Year! Last night we rang in 2009 with some of our very best friends. We enjoyed a fun time together reflecting on 2008 and sharing some of our goals for 2009! I hope you all enjoy the slideshow of our New Year's celebration!