Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween Everyone

These are the pumpkins we carved for Halloween.  I know the picture is blurry, but my phone doesn't seem to take the best pictures.  We're almost ready to go trick-or-treating.  Have a safe and happy Halloween everyone.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Rain, rain, go away!

I don't know about everyone else, but I'm tired of the rain and I want some beautiful fall weather.  Days that are sunny, but yet the air is crisp.  Bonfires and the smell of leaves burning.  Days where you're outside and all the fresh air makes you sleep so well.  

Fall makes me think of soup and I made one of our favorite soup recipes this week.  It's from my Aunt Nellie - she lived in Edgerton, MN - don't know where she found the recipe, but we are thankful to have it with us. 

Cream of Vegetable Soup

3 1/4 c. water
3 cubes chicken bouillion
1/2 c. onion
1/2 c. celery
1/2 c. carrots
1 1/4 c. potatoes
1 10 oz. pkg. frozen broccoli and cauliflower
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 lb. Velveeta, cubed

Peel and cut up veggies for soup.  Add to water and cook until done.  Ad 10 oz. pkg frozen broccoli and cauliflower.  Let cook for a few minutes. Add soup and Velveeta. 

This is what I usually do when I make this recipe:  I make a double batch, I add a bag of California blend veggies and no other carrots, and I add meat of some type (cooked, cubed chicken; browned & drained hamburger; Polish keilbasa). 

Stay warm and dry everyone.  I don't even know where this week went, but I do know that I need to finish posting about the Ironman, the Covered Bridge Festival, and pumpkin carving.  I'm going to check out Colleen's blog to see what recipes are posted.  Wanna join me??

Happy Birthday Prince Charming!!

Happy Birthday to my most wonderful Prince Charming!

I love you sweetheart!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Well, the rest of the pictures will have to wait for tomorrow.  We're tired and ready for bed, but I promise that tomorrow will have more pictures of Boscoe, George, and other highlights from the GNCC Ironman.  I'm also going to try to post some pictures from the Covered Bridge Festival. 

Good night everyone!

Waiting for the pros

Here is the pit crew and all the boys waiting for the pros.

Boscoe at the end of the race. That's one tired rider!

Sent from my iPhone

The pit crew.
Go George Go!

Sent from my iPhone
There's George!

Sent from my iPhone
It's a bird. It's a plane. No wait - it's #988 in his first Ironman race!

Sent from my iPhone
Boscoe is on the left getting ready to cross the creek. I have to say that he's done pretty good right now for not having raced much this summer.

Sent from my iPhone
KM crossing the creek.

Sent from my iPhone
George at the start.

Sent from my iPhone
Our friends son K.M. Is the 3rd from the right.

Sent from my iPhone
Boscoe at the start.

Sent from my iPhone
Rik Smits, former Indiana Pacers basketball player, was here with his son.  Rick even rode in a race later in the day. 

Sent from my iPhone
George is ready! I don't know if you can see his "game face" but I'm afraid :)

Sent from my iPhone
Boscoe is ready for the start of the race.

Sent from my iPhone

Race Day!

Today is race day at the Ironman. The air is crisp, the sun is barely up, there is the sound of dirtbikes everwhere, and you can feel tons of excitement. This is George's first year of racing here, and as you can see he is very excited.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Easy Stromboli

Recently, I've been trying to cook and bake more for my family.  I really like to be in the kitchen and enjoy trying new recipes and wanted to share this one with all of you.  I received this recipe from a friend and I know it's from a Gooseberry Patch cookbook but not sure which one.       

Easy Stromboli

1 loaf frozen bread dough, thawed
2 eggs, separated
2 T. oil
1 t. dried oregano
1 t. dried parsley
1/2 t. garlic powder
1/4 t. pepper
4-oz. pkg. sliced pepperoni
8-oz. pkg. shredded mozzarella cheese
1 T. grated Parmesan cheese

Roll out bread dough into a 12 x 15 inch rectangle; set aside.  Combine egg yolks, oil, oregano, parsley, garlic powder and pepper together; spread over dough.  Arrange pepperoni and mozzarella cheese on top; sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.  Roll up; place seam-side down on a baking sheet.  Brush with egg whites; bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 40 minutes.  Makes 8 servings. 

I'm on my way to Colleen's blog to see what other recipes everyone has posted.  If you have time and like to try new recipes also, check it out and maybe you'll find a recipe or two that you would like to make.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Our Florida Vacation - The Ride Home

This is the last installment in our vacation posts and I couldn't quite decide what name to give it....The Long Ride Home, The Adventure Home, or I Just Want To Get Home.  I decided to call is what it was - The Ride Home.  Our trip was wonderful....probably the best vacation to Florida that we've ever had.....full of memories, lots of laughter, great experiences, awesome food, and the shopping....aaaahhhhh.....ok, I'm back on track!

We took the scenic route (again) and visited Savannah, GA; Columbia, SC; Hickory and Cherokee, NC, and realized that we were a bit behind schedule and had to high tail it back home. 

After we said our farewells to Grandma N., Papa H. and the stepsisters, we headed toward Savannah.  I've wanted to go there for several years now and I couldn't to visit.  When I think of Savannah, the things that come to mind are great architecture, huge trees with Spanish moss, Southern charm, the movie Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, and (of course) Paula Deen.   We tried to get reservations at her restaurant, The Lady and Sons, but they were for 9:00 p.m. and my boys were starving.  This is the outside of her restaurant and shop.

The people at her restaurant recommended Paula's brothers restaurant - Uncle Bubba's Oyster House.  Before we headed to Uncle Bubba's, there were two things that we had to check out.  First was Paula's shop and it was so cute!  Her shop had cookbooks, coffee (her husband's line), cooking utensils, bakeware, and clothing.  I'm sure there was more, but that's all I can remember right now.  I did buy a coffee mug - pink since it's my favorite color - and then bought coffee for Prince Charming.   The second thing we did was check out Johnson Square which was one block from The Lady and Sons.  It was a small park, but absolutely charming. 

This picture of the fountain is from

Here are our pictures from Johnson Square.

 So, we were on our way to Uncle Bubba's.  It was a little bit hard to find, but well worth the drive.  The restaurant was on the water with a great view.  The restaurant was decorated with old family pictures and kind of had a 50's theme.  The food was great and service was good.  Since we were on vacation and trying new food was part of the experience, we tried some southern cuisine - cheese grits.  I can't say that I liked them as much as I liked the fried pickles.  Prince Charming wasn't crazy about them either.  The boys didn't even want to try them once they saw them.  After we left the restaurant, we drove back to Savannah and drove around a bit more, and hit the obligatory Starbucks.  We crossed the Savannah River on the Talmage Memorial Bridge and the night view of Savannah was beautiful.   I wish I had a good picture to share with you, but they are blurry so I will have to share a picture from

We made it all the way to Columbia, SC and decided to call it a night.  The next day we headed to Hickory, NC and on the way saw this huge, old, beautiful house.  I would love to see the inside of it....I'm sure it has gorgeous woodwork, a large staircase, the porch looks so inviting.  If walls could talk, I'm sure there would be plenty of great stories. 

We finally made it to Hickory to see Aunt C and Uncle T.   They volunteer at Catawba Science Center which reminds me of the Children's Museum in Indianapolis.  Here are some pictures of our visit with them.

Uncle T with a tarantula.

Prince Charming likes ferns so I had to take a picture of this display for him.

The Science Center also had a Swamp Things exhibit with several "swamp" animals.  Here's Aunt C, Boscoe and George at the entrance to the exhibit.

An armadillo.

The also had an alligator in the swamp exhibit.

Aunt C with her favorite nephew :)  Ok, maybe not favorite nephew, but some other wild animal.

This is the bobcat from the exhibit.  He was the second one that the exhibit had because the first one grew up and needed to find a new home.  This guy was so funny.  His favorite toy was a stuffed Tigger and we watched him run back and forth in his cage playing with his toys.  The boys wanted to take him home with us.

We built tops in another part of the Science Center and guess who's top stayed up the longest?  Mine :)

Prince Charming and Boscoe were able to pet the sharks.  George wanted to pet one, but couldn't reach them - dont feel too sorry for him though.  When we were at the Indianapolis Zoo and he wouldn't leave the small shark exhibit there.  I think he was able to pet almost every shark there with the amount of time we spent at that exhibit.

Aunt C and Uncle T have a cute apartment with a lovely balcony view.  They were great hosts and treated us to an evening of entertainment at Sims Country BBQ which is a favorite dining/entertainment place for the locals.  It's a very family oriented place with an all you can eat buffet and bluegrass band.

Everyone sits at picnic tables - the barn is full of them.  At the far end of the barn is the stage for the bluegrass band and the dance floor for the clogging.

Our hosts, Aunt C. and Uncle T.

It was clog till you drop.  I'm telling you that these people are serious about their clogging.

Some guys played spoons during the evening.

Prince Charming and I never clogged - we only did the chicken dance.

There was also a large pond by the barn full of huge catfish.

Our next destination was Cherokee, NC.  Aunt C recommended that we stop there to see the Cherokee Indiana Museum plus there was shopping!  It reminded us of Gatlinburg, TN with all the touristy shops. We arrived at the museum a little late, but did get to look at some of the items in the gift shop.  Even though it was a nice place to visit, we thought it had more things to do with motorcycles than indians.  There was a fishing tournament going on when we were there, looked like fun, but it was crowded. 

The next destination was Tail of the Dragon.   Prince Charming heard about this road from friends and it's a world famous road with 318 curves in 11 miles through the mountains.  It's a great place to ride a motorcycle but what about a Ford f250 crewcab????  We stopped at Wendy's for our last supper before attempting to tame the dragon.   The girls working there said we were crazy to try and drive it in our truck.  These are the locals who drive it everyday saying stay away.  We started to questioned whether we were making a mistake until we realized how far we'd have to back track to go around the mountain.  I think my exact quote was "oh hell no!" so up the hill we went like Jack and Jill.  We came across a gas station/store on the way up the hill and stopped to check it out.  As we came out, we saw a semitruck coming from the direction we were headed.  If he could make it we had nothing to worry about.....right???  Well we did make it and the scenery was great and I was nervious with some of the drop offs so close to the road.  The pictures I have posted are a spot at the end of of the curves where the motorcycles would use to turn around and go back.  That was it.  We made it, we were alive, and we were about to finally get out of North Carolina.

It took us forever to get out of North Carolina and we didn't want to spend another night away from home, so home we drove.  And drove.  And drove even more.  It was so good to get home, see our dogs, sleep in our own beds and know that we didn't have to be in the truck the next day. 

We really did have a great vacation.  Great memories of time spent with family and new places that we experienced.  It was our plan to stop whenever and wherever we wanted and that's exactly what we did.  I wouldn't have wanted it any other way. 

Friday, October 16, 2009

Recipe Friday - Chili

I'm not a big fan of chili because it's usually too soupy or too many tomatoes.  Prince Charming loves chili but doesn't like too many beans and finding a happy medium doesn't happen often.  However, I think I may have found it in this recipe that came from a church cookbook.  The only request was from George and he asked that I add noodles.  With the cold, rainy weather we are having, this will be a perfect meal for today.


1 lb ground beef, cooked and drained
1 small onion, chopped
3/4 c. sugar
1 1/2 qt. tomato juice
1 (12 oz) can tomato paste
2 (15 oz.) cans peeled and diced tomatoes
2 (15 1/2 oz.) cans mild chili beans
2 (15 1/2 oz.) cans hot chili beans
1 pkg. chili seasoning mix
few drops Tabasco sauce
chili powder to taste

Brown ground beef and onion; drain.  Add rest of ingredients and simmer until done.

The last time I made this I put it in a large crockpot (didn't add all the juice since it wouldn't all fit), and I used 4 cans of mild chili beans because I also browned chorizo with the hamburger to give the chili a different flavor. 

To see more recipes, check out Colleen's blog.

Enjoy and stay warm!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Goodbye to a friend

A good friend of mine is moving and I will miss her.  Actually, my family will miss their family.  Some friends from work went to lunch with her to say goodbye.

So, we will miss you M.  Take care and enjoy the adventure.

A friend is one who know us, but love us anyway. -- Fr. Jerome Cummings

Friday, October 9, 2009

Mini Oreo Surprise Cupcakes

We are an Oreo family.  It doesn't matter what kind or flavor - all that matter is that we have some.  Actual Oreos or the store brand - doesn't matter.  They are the usual request for snacks in our house.  You get the idea.....  It all goes back to when Prince Charming was a teenager and his parents would buy a package of Oreos and they would be gone in one night.  His parents couldn't figure out what happened to them and then they figured it out.  Prince Charming's dad still tells that story!

This week I wanted to surprise my family with a new treat and found this on and I'm happy to report that they received a thumbs up!  Here is Prince Charming with one last night.

Mini Oreo Surprise Cupcakes

1 (18.25 oz.) package chocolate cake mix
1 (8 oz.) package cream cheese, softened
1 egg
2 tblsp sugar
48 mini Oreo bite size chocolate cookies
1 1/2 cups thawed Cool Whip whipped topping (I used regular frosting)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Prepare cake batter as directed on package; set aside.  Mix cream cheese, egg and sugar until well blended. Spoon cake batter in each of 24 muffin cups, filling each cup about half full.  Top each with about 1/2 tblsp. of cream cheese mixture and 1 cookie.  Cover evenly with remaining cake batter. Bake 19 to 22 minutes.  Cool and top with whipped topping and remaining cookie.  There may be an indentation in top of cupcake after baking.
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