ME

ME

Friday, September 27, 2013

Weekend Happenings, Cheeseburger Soup Recipe (Pinterest), Pumpkin Bird Feeder Devotion

Good Friday morning!

RANDOMNESS #1 - Roxie's 17th Birthday Celebration continued through Wednesday, September 25 (her actual birthday). I've added a few more pics from her family party and one of the actual birth DAY!


Uncle Guy, Aunt Becky, Grandma, Roxie and Grandpa.


Melia and Austin. This could have been taken anywhere, but in honor of Roxie's 17th Birthday, we'll say Austin picked up The Lovely Melia in celebration of this historic event.


Katie, Bev, Brad, Roxie, Zac and Stephanie. I didn't get a picture of Stephanie's engagement ring, but hopefully, I'll have another chance to take the pic at Josh's party this Sunday.

It is beautiful.


And this, Ladies and Gentlemen, is what 17 looks like.

Ahhh... 17. I remember it well.

Or vaguely.

Or not at all.

That was a LOOOONG time ago!

RANDOMNESS #2 - Wednesday was going to be a bittersweet day for me. If Sweet 16 was a big number (and it was), 17 was going to be really huge. HUGE!

Another step closer to TOTAL and COMPLETE independence from the maternal unit... me. Except for laundry, all of my kids can totally survive without me.

To be honest, they know how to do laundry, but because it is a thankless task (and I still "need to be needed"), I continue to do it for the most part.

They can all cook well enough to not starve. They can do their own laundry. They can clean a bathroom, cut a yard, take care of a car, etc., etc., etc.

If I was a horse, it would be time to put me out to pasture.

Or so I thought!

"Mom! Since it's my birthday, I want to take a snack to basketball practice this afternoon. Is there any way you could make a pan of Rice Krispie Treats and bring them to the locker room door around 1:30?" she asked... on her way down the sidewalk... to her car... on her way to Wednesday morning Chick-Fil-A breakfast.

I couldn't believe my ears!

She needed me!

The Chick still needed me!

"Yes. Yes, I can," I called out, choking back tears of joy which were trying to run down my cheeks.

I showered. I coiffed. I put on make-up. I went to the grocery store. I bought marshmallows, Rice Krispies, disposable trays... and candy corn.

Hmmm.

I immediately went home and made not one, but two, batches of FALL RICE KRISPIE TREATS!

I made one batch bright, bright orange. After I pressed the treats into the pan, I pressed candy corn on top. It was lovely.

I made the other batch bright, bright yellow. After I pressed the treats into the pan, I pressed candy corn on top. It, too, was lovely.

I packed a bag with two plastic knives, orange napkins and orange dessert plates.

I drove to the school and Roxie met me at The Big Gold Van.

I was grinning like an idiot!

"Surprise!" I yelled.

"What is all this?" she asked, taking in the two LARGE trays of goodies and bag of cutlery and paper goods.

"I made birthday treats for you to share with your teammates," I yelled... again.

"Mom. I'm 17. This is basketball practice. I just wanted to have plain, beige Rice Krispie treats to give everyone when they left. Pre-cut, no plates, no napkins, no candy corn. What have you done?"

"These taste better," I explained.

Then The Chick looked at me, smiled really, really big, picked up the armful of Rice Krispie goodness and said, "Thanks, Mom. Everyone is going to love these."

And off she went.

I knew she was going to be tempted to throw everything in the garbage can outside the locker room, because instead of birthday Rice Krispie treats, I had made a "birthday embarrassment." A huge birthday faux paus, if you will.

Yes, I had.

But I also knew something she didn't. Seventeen and 18 year-old chicks love bright orange and bright yellow Rice Krispie treats decorated with candy corn.

They really do.

When she came home a couple of hours later, she threw her books down, flopped on the couch beside me and said what I already knew to be true, "They absolutely loved them. They ate every bite, and they said to tell you they loved you, too."

"I know," I said, wisely and more than a little puffed up.

"I'm not always going to be an embarrassment to you, Roxie. One day, when you're almost 30, I'm going to be able to walk into a room, breathe, talk and laugh and you're going to notice you're not a vivid shade of red... and you're not wondering what your friends are thinking... and you like my shoes."

She smiled, nodded, kissed me on the cheek and went upstairs.

I don't think she believed me, but that's okay.

I know it to be true.

RANDOMNESS #3 - I had an "I've got to get out of this house" moment yesterday afternoon, so I drove to Whole Foods to take a peek at their fall produce... and it did not disappoint.


Isn't it lovely?


I love the "spilling of the while pumpkins."


These are called Big Mac pumpkins. They cost $49.99 and they are huge. They would be hard to push around in a wheelbarrow, much less carry to the cash register and then to The Big Gold Van.

I thought about how I would explain the purchase of a $49.99 pumpkin to Mikie and this is what I came up with...

1. It needed me.

2. I wouldn't have to purchase any mums or other pumpkins for our front porch decor this year... or next... or next.

3. We could say we grew it ourselves and enter it in a State Fair competition somewhere. We might even get asked to appear on The Today Show. They do a story on the biggest pumpkin every year. (Wouldn't that be too cool?)

4. I needed it.

I know my Mikie. He wouldn't go for any of the above reasons.

Heavy, heavy sigh.


I am a lover of ALL gourds... even the ones some would consider unattractive.

I am Champion of the Undergourd!

Cheeseburger Soup

I tried this Pinterest recipe this week... and it was GOOD!

It's not the most simple recipe in the world, but it is definitely worth the effort.

You will need the following:

2 carrots
1 onion
2 celery
8 cups potatoes, diced
3 cans chicken broth
1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup butter
1/2 pound hamburger meat
1/2 cup milk
1/4 cup sour cream
1/2 pound Velveeta
Salt and pepper to taste

1. Brown the meat and drain. Set aside.

2. Chop the potatoes into small chunks and set aside.

3. Grate the carrots and chop the celery and the onion.

4. Melt 1/4 cup of the butter in a large 5-quart pot and saute the onions and the celery until clear.

5. Add cooked meat and potatoes, along with the chicken broth.

6. Simmer until the potatoes are tender.

7. While this is cooking, take the remaining butter and add the flour over low heat. Stir until thick and then set aside.

8. Once the potatoes are done to your liking, add the flour mixture to thicken the soup.

9. Stir well, then add the cheese cut into blocks along with the milk. Stir occasionally until the cheese is melted.

10. Simmer in the crock pot all day. Right before serving take the soup off the heat and add the sour cream. Stir until incorporated and then serve.

NOTE - Goes great with French bread.

FANTASTIC!

Pumpkin Bird Feeder Devotion

NOTE - This is the last devotion I'll be sharing from the DEVOTIONS FROM THE PUMPKIN PATCH handout for awhile, but it is my favorite.

You will need the following:

Small or Medium-Sized Pumpkin
Bag of Bird Seed
Ribbon or Cord Strong Enough to Hang Half Pumpkin
Picture of Sparrow
Unsharpened Pencil

Devotion - His Eye is on the Sparrow

Prepare the pumpkin by cutting it in half and cleaning the pulp out of the pumpkin.

Fill each clean half of pumpkin with bird seed.

Have cord or ribbon strong enough to wrap around bottom of filled pumpkin half and tie to a low tree branch.

Now have your devotion sitting on a blanket under the bird feeder.

FALLING SPARROWS - Have your family fly around the yard like sparrows until Dad or Mom shouts out “FALLING SPARROWS!” Children will all fall down until Dad or Mom shouts out “FLYING SPARROWS” and continue as time allows. The final FALL can then be story time as children gather in a circle.

NOTE - This is a great game to play before your devotion when the kids appear to be a little antsy. It gets rid of some of the excess energy.

I have a picture to show you. This bird is a sparrow. A sparrow is a small bird. He weighs about the same as a pencil. (Pass around an unsharpened pencil and let everyone see how light a sparrow really is.)

Sparrows do not fly south for the winter. They live here all year, even when it's extremely cold, like last winter.

Sparrows are everywhere. They are just common, everyday birds. Lots of birds are more beautiful than sparrows. Lots of birds sound more lovely when they sing than sparrows. Sparrows are ordinary.

Yet, Jesus had something to say about sparrows:

"When sparrows are sold, two small sparrows cost only one penny. But not even one of them can die without God's knowing it. God even knows how many hairs are on your head. So don't be afraid. You are worth much more than many birds." Matthew 10:29-31.

God loves the sparrows, and He pays attention to their lives.

God loves you much more, and He pays close attention to your life. God knows how many hairs are on your head. And God knows what is going on in your life. God knows when you are sad about something; and when you are happy. God knows when you are afraid; and He understands.

We can care for sparrows, too, just like God does. When it is very, very cold outside, birds need to eat more food for their little bodies to stay warm. We’ll watch from our window and see the birds eat from our birdfeeder!

End with prayer.

Weekend Happenings

1. On Friday, Austin and Roxie will be at the Donoho and Gardendale football games, respectively. Mike and Josh have plans. And I... Well, I have a lot of stuff to do this Friday evening in prep for the rest of the weekend.

2. Saturday is a yard day for Mike and Josh. Mikie is in charge of ours and Josh is helping Austin out by taking over one of his "pay" yards.

Since Sweet Taylor is coming home for the weekend, I am sure Roxie will be spending much of the day playing catch up, visiting favorite Smoothie shops, etc., etc.

Josh and a friend are going to head to the JSU game tomorrow afternoon, and if I am not mistaken, Mike and I are free to have a late afternoon date.

Since we've been walking this week, we talked about using some of this time to exercise, but it seems wrong (to me) to exercise on a Saturday... or a Sunday... or most Mondays... and definitely Fridays.

A better way to spend a beautiful Fall Saturday late afternoon would be the first 2013 Faulkner Family Fun Fall Drive.

Of course, there will just be the two of us, but this is the first of many. We can take the other Faulkners and The Lovely Melia on the next drive.

3. After church Sunday, we will have yet another Birthday Celebration. Josh will be turning 20 October 4 (next Friday), so we're doing the big family thing Sunday afternoon from 2:00 until 4:00.

Josh is my son. I know this because he makes great Birthday AND Christmas lists each and every year. They are full of specific, easy-to-find, mostly affordable gift ideas. I love him for the list... and a couple of other reasons.

I'll be back Monday... the last day before the first day of October... the BEST month of the year! I'll have Faulkner Family Fun Fall Drive #1 pics, Josh Birthday Celebration pics, another new recipe, Blog Linkage and more, more, more.

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

Sincerely,

The Enchanting Belinda

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