Friday, March 8, 2013

Weekend Happenings, A Bobbin' for Apples Story, Mountain Story (Words... No Pics) - Part Four, Blog Linkage, Pioneer Woman's Crash Hot Potatoes, New-to-Me Party Game

Good Friday morning!

RANDOMNESS #1 - I have a Sparkle update. Sparkle is almost 77 years old, and when I last left you, she was not feeling well at all.

I took her to the vet's office for a thorough check-up, and when they called for me to pick her up, Mike was home so he fetched the pup.

The doctor said she had arthritis in her spine AND an enlarged heart which is the precursor of congestive heart failure.

The good news... The arthritis can be treated with medicine and we have to learn different ways to pick her up, etc. when she doesn't feel like going up or down stairs. (The medicine already seems to be working. She is running some and her tail is wagging again.)

The other good news... The enlarged heart can be the only symptom she has for quite a while, so we're going to watch her (excessive coughing is a sign things are getting worse) and love on her.

The bad news... I think we're okay in this department. We knew something was wrong, and the above is not as bad as I had imagined.

And Spring is right around the corner. (Sparkle's favorite season is Spring.)

Since you don't know Sparkle as well as I do, I'll just go ahead and tell you she's smiling in this picture.

She's feeling much better.

RANDOMNESS #2 - A Bobbin' for Apples Story - When Roxie was six, seven or eight (I cannot remember), she was invited to her cousin's birthday party. (That would be Monica. You all know Monica.)

It was going to be a dress-up party.

Monica, Roxie and all the other little chicks dressed up in dance costumes and make-up and Amy did their hair. They loved it.

I knew what was going to be happening, so I was a little surprised when I arrived to pick Roxie up and her head was soaking wet... and her make-up was runny... and she was smiling ear-to-ear.

Since Amy had a pool, my first thought was Amy had turned the dress-up party into a pool party.

But, no. The other girls were dry and made up and coiffed.

"What happened?" I asked Amy and Roxie as I got out of the car.

"Well, we played a little game, and it appears Roxie is really, really good at this particular game," Amy explained.

"What kind of game was it?" I asked again.

Before Amy could say anything, Roxie shouted, "Bobbin' for apples. I LOVE bobbin' for apples. Can we get a giant bucket and do it with The Brothers tomorrow?"

Amy started laughing. "The other girls didn't want to get their hair and make-up wet, but Roxie went ALL the way to the bottom and didn't come up until she had an apple in her mouth."

I don't like to brag, but it was a pretty big accomplishment. Roxie was missing several teeth at the time, you see.

Once we got into the car, Roxie told me all the details of the party, but it was pretty obvious the apple bobbin' was her favorite.

"Mom? Do they have apple bobbin' in the Olympics?" she asked.

"Uh, no. No, I don't think they do," I replied slowly.

What I wanted to say was, "No, but they have that thing called 'curling,' and I'm pretty sure apple bobbin' is much more strenuous than gently sliding a large hockey puck into a circle on the ice... and sweeping!"

"Well, if they ever do, I'm going to win GOLD," she said.

We're still waiting.

She may be the oldest Apple Bobbin' Gold Medal Recipient in the history of the Olympics, but if The Chick is 90 years-old when they finally admit it is indeed a sport, she WILL be competing.

RANDOMNESS #3 - A Mountain Story (Words... No Pics) - Part Four - This story has got to end. Especially since we're planning a little Nashville trip in the next week or so. (Be thankful our trips do not usually last over three days.)

I'm going to do the "list" thing, because when I start to get bogged down or muddled up, I find it clears my head to put everything I know in a list of ten things... or less.

1. After our snow tubing fun, we made our way back to our little cabin in the woods. Since I had not been able to schedule a time the weekend before for our Annual Valentine's Day Banquet (breakfast, lunch OR dinner), I just threw it into our mountain schedule.

I had to purchase the cousins' candy and cards, and I simply prepared the same pink meal I had planned on preparing for The Faulkner Five... except I tripled the recipe.

It worked out well.

There is a little story behind this pic. I had found two of these Valentine boxes two weeks before Valentine's Day. Instead of chocolates, they contained beef jerky. The Brothers LOVE beef jerky.

An added bonus of the Beef Jerky Valentine... the fur-trimmed heart box.

Since I was adding Brad, Katie and Zac to the Banquet, I wanted to get the boys a fur-trimmed heart box, too.

Because nothing says "I love you" more than beef jerky in a hairy box.

The day after Valentine's Day, I headed to Wal-Mart to pick up the remaining Valentine's Day paraphernalia before we hit the road.

Guess what?

There were NO beef jerky valentines left. None. Nada.

So I had to buy the cousins a big box of chocolates (for only $3 since it was the day AFTER Valentine's Day).

When everyone sat down for the Banquet, I explained the differences between the chocolate valentines and the jerky valentines. Brad and Zac were disappointed, but they were troopers...

And then everyone opened their gift.

Inside each of the jerky valentines was ONE teeny, tiny bag of jerky pieces.

They weren't heart-shaped.

They weren't chocolate covered.

They weighed less than 6 ounces.

They were a rip-off.

They were a $7 rip-off!

Well, except for the fur-trimmed heart-shaped boxes which can be used again and again and again.

I will say the pink pasta was a hit, and the receivers of chocolate shared candy with the receivers of jerky, so it really was a "love" celebration.

2. On Sunday mornings, Tommy always gives a devotion/sermon. It is always age appropriate. It is always directed specifically to our family. It is always one of my favorite things about our mountain trips.

3. Zac has celebrated numerous birthdays in the mountain, so Bev did a "Cars" theme (since he'll be driving, you see), and he added some more airsoft "stuff" to his arsenal.

This led to a three-hour airsoft battle in the mountains for the guys... and a nap for the girls.

4. We also did the KnifeWorks thing, the "buying of the fudge" thing, the hot tub thing, the playing Catch Phrase and Spoons thing, the sitting by the fire thing and watching movies thing.

It wasn't a perfect trip because there were four teenagers and seven adults with differing opinions, mood swings and time clocks on the same trip.

But as Grandmother said as we pulled out of the driveway, "It was a sweet trip."

And "sweet trips" with four teenagers and seven adults are not always an easy thing to pull off... so we'll take it!

Blog Linkage - Let's share some Easter ideas, shall we?

1. Go to eighteen25 under My Blog List and read today's post entitled "{our fave five}." Take a look at the first picture on the list. Easy Easter Eggs! And cute, too.

2. Go to Six Sisters' Stuff under My Blog List and read today's post entitled "25 Easter Treat Recipes." I found three I want to make NOW... and four more I want to make later.

Crash Hot Potatoes

This recipe was on The Pioneer Woman's cooking show last Saturday.

These potatoes are easy and delicious.

You will need the following:

12 small yellow potatoes
3 tablespoons olive oil
Fresh ground black pepper

1. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, boil the potatoes in lightly salted water until fork-tender, about 12 minutes.

2. Preheat the oven to 475 degrees.

3. Place the potatoes on a baking sheet. Using a potato masher, gently press down to mash each one. The tops of the potatoes should be really textured.

4. Drizzle the tops of the potatoes with the olive oil. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Bake until golden brown and crisp, about 15 minutes.

I made the mistake of using small red potatoes, but I understand why the recipe calls for yellow potatoes. (They are softer.)

Try them. I think you'll like them, too.

New-to-Me Party Game

I had planned this "How Well Do You Know the Birthday Boy" game before I went to a wedding shower last weekend. While at the wedding shower, we played a similar game, and I changed things around a little for Austin's Birthday Celebration on March 3.

I gave each person present a list of questions and a pen. Austin sat in the other room (ALONE) and answered the questions, also.

When everyone finished, I read Austin's answers aloud, and they checked their own paper.

If the winner was OVER the age of 22 and they matched more of Austin's answers than anyone else, they would receive a Gift Certificate to a steakhouse... and they would dine one-on-one with Austin... for FREE.

If the winner was UNDER the age of 22 and they matched more of Austin's answers than anyone else, they would receive two Gift Certificates to a movie... and they would take Austin... for FREE.

In case you didn't notice. Austin won no matter what.

Here are the questions I used. (I copied the first seven questions from the bridal shower game. They worked very well.)

1. For a second car, would Austin buy a sports car, an antique car, a large convertible or a boxcar?

2. Would Austin prefer to go water-skiing, fishing, hiking, bike riding, horseback riding, bowling or flea catching?

3. If Austin was going to the movies, would he prefer to see a tender love story, a terrifying horror film, a spectacular epic, a suspenseful mystery, a comedy, a musical or the previews?

4. Would Austin prefer to read a beautiful sonnet, a hilarious essay or a letter of intent signed by a football player?

5. If Austin were spending an evening at home, would he prefer to read a book, play X-Box, watch TV, play cards or eat chicken fat?

6. Would Austin prefer a French poodle, a German shepherd, a cocker spaniel, a dachshund or a shaggy dog?

7. Would Austin prefer to live in the mountains, by the ocean, in a small town, in a big city or in a cave?

8. Austin has been to England. Which country would Austin like to visit next? France, Italy, Germany, Ireland, Switzerland or Iran?

9. True or False. Austin actually said, “We were feeling a little peckish, so we stopped for a snack along the way?”


10. If Austin was going to do anything other than be in the “sports” field, would it be politics, medicine, teaching or the military?

11. When Austin was a little guy, his favorite color was orange. If you asked him today, would he say his favorite color was orange, black, red, robin egg blue or ecru?

12. If Austin could only listen to one kind of music for the rest of his life, would it be country, classical, Celtic, Broadway tunes, metal rock, rap or Southern gospel?

13. When Austin was in elementary school, he won the SAME prize every year at the Halloween Carnival. What was that prize?

14. How long have Austin and Melia been dating (years only)?

15. If Austin picked a favorite animal, would it be a giraffe, a lion, a tiger, a liger or a kitty cat?

16. If Austin had a favorite state OTHER THAN ALABAMA, would it be Tennessee, Georgia, Florida, Virginia, Mississippi or Nebraska?

17. If Austin could be a superhero, would he be Thor, Iron Man, Batman, Robin or Green Lantern?

Be sure to save a couple of the questions for tie breakers.

The winner of this particular game was Josh. He knew 14 of the answers... so they're planning a Guys' Night Out in the next couple of weeks to see a movie together.


Weekend Happenings

I think I'm going to cook dinner and plan a Faulkner Family Movie Night for this evening. It may just be me and Mikie, but that's okay!

Tomorrow morning has been declared a "yard morning." Everyone is getting up early and cleaning up before heading out and about for a beautiful SUNNY Saturday afternoon.

I've planned a surprise date for Mikie which begins at 1:30 and ends at 5:30.

As usual, he is very nervous.

I think we'll grill hamburgers and hotdogs Saturday night.

Which means Mikie will grill hamburgers and hotdogs... and I'll supply the buns.

Sunday will be church and... I'm open to any and all possibilities.

We'll just have to wait and see!

Have a sweet weekend. I'll be back Monday with every teeny, tiny detail from our Friday, Saturday and Sunday "adventures," so expect a particularly SHORT post.

Take care, and I'll talk to you next week!


The Enchanting Belinda


  1. Glad to hear sparkle is feeling better. Sydney is home for spring break and last night was the only night we were all home and able to eat so we went to 5 Guys. The new Target at Brookwood opened Wed, so we stopped by for an adventure. Who knew a 2 story new Target would be so fun! I'm not sure why - but we were all like kids in a candy store - it was funny. Anyway - I'm pretty sure I saw Melia there and was goign to go say hello, but Joe was convinced that she would think I was a little crazy and perhaps stalkerish. So - please Melia that if she saw some middle-aged woman in Target staring at her - it was me and although I'm a little crazy - I feel like I know her from the years of postings. Have a great weekend!

    1. Roxie's planning a trip to the new Target. She cannot wait. And Melia would not have thought you were crazy. (She knows she's a blog celebrity.)

      Y'all have a good weekend, too!


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