Monday, October 28, 2013

Mindless Monday, Variation of Pretzel Hugs, Quotable Quotes, Blog Linkage, Halloween Themed Scavenger Hunts (Pinterest)

Good Monday morning!

RANDOMNESS #1 - Mikie is still gone... and I'm still whining about it.

Tonight, there is a special dinner at The Dallas Zoo and he will be in attendance.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but am I not the ONE AND ONLY Faulkner who has written on his/her Official Bucket List to go to as many zoos as possible before he/she kicks The Bucket?

Yes. Yes, I am.

I'll post his Dallas Zoo Dinner pictures on Friday, and we can all live vicariously through him.

RANDOMNESS #2 - Fall is officially all over Central Alabama. It took a little while, but the colors have appeared, and it is gorgeous.

RANDOMNESS #3 - Roxie wanted to try her hand at making caramel apples the other night, and while we have never made them before, you have to admit they look pretty tasty.

In actuality, the caramel wasn't the right consistency, and even though the taste was there... the texture was not.

We may or may not attempt them again this season.

We were pretty disappointed with the final product.

Oh. And Roxie says, "NOT!"

RANDOMNESS #4 - Roxie and Hunter went to The Pumpkin Patch and we had the first official pumpkin carving of the year.

This is the table set up for two people carving pumpkins.

Twine makes even plastic tablecloths look more rustic.

Also, a great Iced Carrot Cake Candle cannot be beat to set the atmosphere for Fall.

I thought Roxie and Hunter did a great job.

Much, much better than the Caramel Apple Debacle of 2013.

Quotable Quotes - As we all know by now, one of my favorite movies of all time is Julie & Julia... which is a Hollywood depiction of Julia Child's life. Thus, I am naturally drawn to Julia Child quotes.

"A party without cake is just a meeting." Julia Child

The woman was right about so many things!

Blog Linkage - These two links just felt like Fall to me.

1. Go to "the anderson crew" under My Blog List and click on today's post entitled "yonder way farm." The post and pics make me want to find a local farm TODAY to visit.

2. Go to "eighteen25" under My Blog List and click on today's post entitled "The Great Halloween Link Up." Talk about great Halloween ideas! This site has a ton of them.

Variation of Pretzel Hugs

I've shared this little recipe several times over the years, but as time goes on, it becomes much more difficult for me to find Hershey's Hugs in the stores.

Since I wanted to make the Pretzel Hugs as a snack for the Pumpkin Carving Party Roxie's having this afternoon, I decided to substitute Hershey's White Chocolate Bliss (with the meltaway center)... and I must say, the Bliss worked very, very well.

Halloween Themed Scavenger Hunts (Pinterest)

I'm a Scavenger Hunt NUT, so these two ideas caught my eye right away.

Bobbing for Apples (With Clues)

The idea for this hunt is fairly simple. You set up an apple bobbing station, and you will tie a clue to the apple stem. Simply tie a ribbon on one end to the apple stem leaving about 12 inches of ribbon. At the other end, attach a small (or snack-sized) Ziploc bag. You will fold up your clue and insert it into the Ziploc bag to make it waterproof. To make the game more challenging, include some false or blank clues.

You will need the following:

Bucket filled with water
Snack-sized Ziploc bags

Pumpkin Cavity Search

This is an obstacle which involves touching gross food. Purchase several pumpkins, cut the tops off and then scrape all the pumpkin guts into the middle of the pumpkin. Put your clue inside a Ziploc bag, and place it inside the pumpkin under all the guts. Have each party guest choose one pumpkin to search for their next clue.

You will need the following:

Several pumpkins (5 should be enough)
Something to scrape the pumpkin guts
Ziploc bags

These two stations would be great to include in a Halloween Themed Scavenger Hunt! Something a little different and fun!

Have a fantastic Monday. I'll be back Friday with pics and how-to tips for a teenage chick Pumpkin Carving Party, Randomness and more.

Take care, and I'll talk to you the end of the week.


The Enchanting Belinda

Friday, October 25, 2013

Weekend Happenings, Dance Mom Story #3, Coconut Shrimp Update

Good Friday morning!

And a beautiful Friday morning it is!



October sky.


RANDOMNESS #1 - My plan was to photograph The Beagles this week. Running through the leaves. Rolling through the leaves. Chasing each other through the leaves.

I think you get the basic idea of the picture I wanted.

So, I picked a beautiful Fall afternoon, spread out a Fall colored throw under a tree with falling Fall leaves, and I summoned The Beagles.

Sparkle rarely runs these days. And I missed my only opportunity to photograph her slowly ambling toward me because Copper was doing exactly what I wanted him to do... RUNNING THROUGH THE LEAVES.

When Sparkle reached me, she crawled into my lap and got comfortable.

And Copper continued running, rolling and chasing (his tail) through the leaves.

I took 75 to 2,046 pics of Copper, but these four were my favorite.

He thinks I have food. You can tell by "the tongue licking his chops" pose.

And I call this one "curly ears."

Mr. Regal Beagle.

He's always, always been a happy guy.

My plan for next week... Set everything up again and summon The Beagles, but only take pictures of Sparkle slowly ambling toward me. At the speed she's moving these days, I should still be able to get 75 to 2,046 of her... and four of those will most definitely be my "favorites."

RANDOMNESS #2 - I am getting prepared for our November 3 Fall Feast. Last night, I decided to buy the various sized pumpkins I will need for the Punkin' Chunkin' competition. I had everything from ginormous pumpkins to little, bitty pumpkins for the kids to throw during the contest.

And then I spotted the butternut squash.

They were huge.

They were oblong in shape.

They were heavy.

They were perfect to add as a tie breaker for any punkin' chunkin' discrepancy.

I added them to the buggy.

I picked up a few other things, and headed to the checkout.

As the nice lady was ringing me up, she made a comment under her breath, "Squash shouldn't be that expensive."

"I'm sorry. What? What did you say?"

"I can't believe squash costs that much," she repeated.

Hmmm. I hadn't checked, but because of her response, I assumed they were in the $4 or $5 for two range... which indeed is a little pricey for squash.

And then I looked at the register.

And the register said $10.73...

For two butternut squash...

I wasn't even going to use as nourishment...

But for chunkin'...

And I felt ashamed at my punkin' chunkin' extravagance, and had her put the butternut squash away.

But I kept my other gourds because they were reasonably priced. Nay! They were even marked down a little because "tis the end of the pumpkin/gourd season," and I was providing a service to the community by helping rid the stores of the unwanted pumpkins/gourds/etc. (which will all probably be thrown into a dumpster next Thursday).

And I felt better about myself.

RANDOMNESS #3 - Dance Mom Story #3 - Roxie and I were participating in our THIRD major recital. That meant I had TWO major recitals under my belt... and I was now considered a Professional Dance Mom.

You will understand what happened when another Dance Mom who had THREE little girls in the recital came up to me and asked in a slightly hysterical voice, "Will you please dress Sally for their second dance number? I have to dress my youngest daughter and try to run backstage to see my older daughter perform, and everything is just happening all at the same time," and then she trailed off into the Hysterical Dance Mom giggle.

"Of course. Of course, I will dress your daughter and my daughter, too. No problem." I heard the words, and I looked around to see which idiot Dance Mom had actually uttered them.

Yep. That would be me.

"What have I done?" I muttered to myself. I took out the Official Dance Recital Costume Sheet and checked out everything that needed to be done to prepare the chicks for Dance No. 2.

Different colored tights from the ones they would already have on... Check.

Different shoes... Check.

Different head piece, but NO hairstyle change... Check.

Slip on one-piece costume with only 32 accessories... Check.

Make-up stayed the same... Check.

Re-apply lip gloss... Check.

Throw a handful of glitter powder on them as they were heading out the door... Check.

Okay. Breathe. Breathe. This was indeed doable.

IF I had 22 dance routines between Dance #1 and Dance #2.

In real life, I only had five dance routines. Five. FIVE!!!

As soon as the girls finished Dance #1 and skipped off the stage, I grabbed Roxie and her friend and we ran down the hall, down two flights of stairs and into our dressing room.

I had set their bags together and we started the "taking off the costume" process.

The little girl I was helping had an extremely organized Dance Mom for a Mommy. Her bag had a place for everything and everything had a place in her bag.

As I took her black tights off and threw them over the back of my head, she said in a sweet, small voice, "There's a special section for my tights, Miss Belinda, so I don't lose them."

"I understand, Sweetie," I replied, as I threw two of Roxie's jazz shoes and one of the little girl's jazz shoes into the opposite corner of the unbelievably crowded AND HOT dressing room. "When you get finished with this dance, I'm going to collect and gather all of your things and put everything in it's special section. I promise."

And I really did intend to do that, too, but I think I lost way to much bodily fluid during the flop sweat phase of the costume change, and I'm pretty sure I was dangerously dehydrated.

When everything was said and done, the other girls were lining up and the two chicks I was responsible for were ready to go except for the reapplication of lip gloss.

I grabbed Roxie by the shoulders and kissed her square on her lips. I did the same with the other little girl.

Mocha Mist lipstick has never looked so good on seven year-olds.

I gave them their final pep talk before going onstage. "Run. Run as if your lives depended on it. Catch up to your group and don't stop until you are on that stage!"

"Did they make it?" you may ask.

I cannot say I saw them dance in Dance #2 of that specific recital, but when everyone returned to the dressing room a few minutes later, several of the other Dance Moms told me ALL the girls had done an outstanding job (as they stepped over my lifeless body lying under the ceiling fan in the middle of the room).

And I chose to believe "ALL the girls" meant Roxie and her little friend.

Coconut Shrimp Update

I shared a Coconut Shrimp recipe in September, and I told you I would let you know how it turned out as soon as I made it at home.

It turned out great!

Yes, it did!

Austin and Mikie are my coconut shrimp experts and they both loved it.

Once again, I wish I had not wasted so much time being intimidated by the shrimp over the years.

The shrimp is ridiculously easy.

The shrimp is ridiculously good.

I think I'm going to tackle the lobster next.

The lobster has always intimidated me, too.

Weekend Happenings

1. I have sad news to report. Every year at this time, Mike goes out of a town for a work meeting. It always falls on the best week of the year... the last week of October.

This year he is going to Dallas, Texas. He'll go to meetings every day, but at night, he'll go out to eat at these fantastic Tex-Mex restaurants, and he'll eat homemade quacamole and authentic Mexican cuisine.

Thankfully, I have four pizzas and a frozen bag of vegetable soup in the downstairs freezer, so I (and whatever kids are around this weekend) will be eating "high on the hog," whatever the heck that means.

Or I might cook something very impressive and delicious while he's away.

Or not.

Truth be told, I have no idea who will be where any time this weekend.

Except for Austin.

And Mikie.

2. I'm hoping Mike and I will be able to go on a date tonight. We want to see the Captain Phillips movie with Tom Hanks while wearing sweaters, boots and jackets.

3. Austin will be heading to Anniston/Jacksonville for his weekend jobs, so I cannot count on him to eat anything I might prepare at home.

4. Josh is working on plans, so I have no idea what his weekend will hold (except he gets the Auburn game on his television in his apartment in Hanceville, so he might go back to the apartment Saturday night to watch the game).

5. Roxie is attending the last home game of the Gardendale Rockets tonight.

6. And Mikie is going to Dallas for five days. Did I mention that already? Did I?

If anything exciting does happen this weekend, I'll be sure to let you know Monday morning. It will be a surprise for all of us!

Have a glamtastic Fall Weekend. Even though my Mikie will be far, far away, I will try to do the same. I'll be back Monday with pics (of something), stories (about something) and some Halloween Family Goodness.

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


The Enchanting Belinda

It's a 3:00 kind of day...

Hey, Guys!

I'm ALMOST finished with today's post, but I need to leave and run a couple of errands.

I'm going to have everything up and ready for reading by 3:00 this afternoon.

Coconut Recipe Update
Dance Mom Story #3
Dog Pics
Weekend Happenings

Stop by if you have a chance!


The Enchanting Belinda

Monday, October 21, 2013

Mindless Monday, Dance Mom Story #2, Halloween Brownie Surprise (Pinterest), Quotable Quotes

Good Monday morning!

RANDOMNESS #1 - Needless to say, Mike and Josh had an AWESOME time in College Station, Texas this weekend. The Texas A&M Stadium was their 8th SEC stadium to visit in as many years. It was a long road trip, but it was so worth the drive!

This is a phone pic of the stadium as everyone was leaving. Pretty nice, huh?

This is a phone pic of the scoreboard with the final score... 45 - 41. Even nicer, huh?

Josh loved the flatness of Texas. (This was his first time in the state.) The sunsets go on forever.

I hate to say it, but my guys ordered chicken fried bacon and gravy as an appetizer at Beastmasters Restaurant for their Saturday night victory dinner.

They kinda hate they told me about it because they are now on a 48-hour cleanse... which may turn into a 72-hour cleanse... or even a seven-day cleanse depending on my mood.

The very idea!

I thought deep fried butter was bad when I heard about it on a cooking show, but chicken fried bacon... and gravy.

Again... The very idea!

RANDOMNESS #2 - Zac is just like his brother and his cousins... tall. He is pretty easy to spot on the field in his marching band regalia, and I took a few pics of him doing his "thang."

His eyes look closed, but they were like that in every single picture I took.

I like to think he is concentrating very hard or praying without ceasing.

How cute is this guy?

Braces came off last week... and I'm pretty sure he grew another two inches.

It was a perfect night for a high school football game. Not a drop of humidity to be found! Everyone else wore a hoody, jacket or wrapped a blanket around their shoulders, but not me.

I just sat there in my purple and gold tank top and soaked in all the coolness.

It was even better than sitting on my favorite air conditioning vent during the long, hot Summer months.

And a good time was had by all.

Y'all know I'm kidding about the purple and gold tank top... right?

I'm a Gardendale Rocket.

I don't wear purple and gold!

RANDOMNESS #3 - Dance Mom Story #2 - This is another story from my first ever year as a Dance Mom. Remember, Roxie was five... and I was 40. (That was totally irrelevant, but I had already done the math and I hated to waste it.)

Roxie's first dance was scheduled ACT NUMBER 10 on the program.

I dressed her in her little bumblebee costume, and as per specific instructions, she wore a long shirt, leggings and sandals. In other words, no part of her costume was showing while we sat in the audience to watch the first three numbers.

After ACT NUMBER 3 was finished, we would quickly and quietly make our way to the dressing room where I would remove the long shirt, leggings and sandals... attach her headpiece with 43 bobby-pins... and slip on her little black tap shoes.

By the time ACT NUMBER 6 was in progress, we would be in position in the wings ready to go on as ACT NUMBER 10.

We were first-timers, but I was as prepared as I could possibly be.

And then it happened. I started to over-think.

The first ACT was a medley. One song going right into another song.

Did the first ACT count as one big song, or was I supposed to count the individual songs within the medley?

Doubts came flooding into my overly-prepared mind.

Flop sweat began.

And then Mikie became the straw that broke this 40 year-old Newbie Dance Mom's back...

"Is that a little bumblebee behind the curtain in the wings?" he asked.

I looked.

And, yes.

Yes, it was a little bumblebee behind the curtain in the wings.

That meant... That meant...

That meant I snatched Roxie's hand and we quickly and loudly ran from the auditorium, through the lobby, down the back stairs, straight to the dressing room...

Filled with dozens of other little bumblebees.

Within one minute... NAY! Within 48 seconds, I had attached Roxie's headpiece, taken off the shirt and leggings and slipped on her little black tap shoes, and we were ready to go.

But it wasn't time.

We had to wait another 33 minutes before we were supposed to be standing in the wings.

I looked around at all the Veteran Dance Moms, and said, "I thought I saw a bumblebee behind the curtain in the wings during the first ACT."

"Oh, that was Kelsey. She wanted to watch her big sister dance in the opening number, so her Mom took her upstairs a little early," another Mom explained, over her shoulder.

What? What? You were allowed to just go anywhere willy-nilly in the building whenever you wanted? You DID NOT have to follow the instructions on the OFFICIAL RECITAL INSTRUCTION SHEET I had memorized two days earlier?

I wanted to ask where I could report the disobedience of the little bumblebee standing behind the curtain in the wings (and her MOM), but I had a feeling since I was a Newbie I needed to be quiet and breathe.

Right after I walked next door to the 10 year-old girls' dressing room to borrow/sneak/snatch some deoderant.

Flop sweat on a 40 year-old Newbie Dance Mom is NOT a pretty sight.

And guess what? I have another Dance Mom Story for Friday.

Sad, but true.

Poor, little bumblebee... with the stressed-out Newbie Dance Mom.

Don't you want to just hug her?

Quotable Quotes - Loved this one!

"Peace is not the absence of trouble, but the presence of Christ." Sheila Walsh

Halloween Brownie Surprise (Pinterest)

You will need the following:

2 boxes of brownies
Any and all kinds of mini chocolate bars collected at Halloween

1. Prepare brownies according to package instructions.

2. Spread half into a 9" x 13" pan.

3. Layer with mini chocolate bars.

4. Spread the rest of the mix over the candy bars and bake for about 45 minutes at 350 degrees.

5. Cut into small pieces since they are rich and each piece will have a different taste.

NOTE - I had to bake my recipe for an hour. After 45 minutes, I put a piece of aluminum foil over the pan and baked it an additional 15 minutes.

ANOTHER NOTE - My favorite bite... The bite with a miniature Hershey's Krackel in the middle. Yum!

Have a delightful, cool, autumnal week. I'll be back Friday with yet another Dance Mom Story, Weekend Happenings, pics of something (I don't know what) and some more October "goodness" you can try at home.

Take care, and I'll talk to you the end of the week.


The Enchanting Belinda

P.S. I'm going to leave you with an Austin/Lovely Melia October pic. I just thought it was pretty.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Weekend Happenings, Dance Mom Story #1

Good Friday morning!

RANDOMNESS #1 - This is the last set of Homecoming Pics. This Top Ten came off of The Chick's phone.

On Character Day of Homecoming Week, Roxie dressed up as one of the 101 Dalmatians. Roxie and Kelci.

Roxie and Ragan.

On Holiday Day of Homecoming Week, Roxie decided on St. Patrick's Day as her special holiday. Other than the green shirt and green ribbon belt, the Lucky Charms cereal was the main piece of her costume.

Sad, but true.

Just a bunch of Juniors hangin' out!

Roxie and Kendall.

Roxie and Ally.

Ragan, Roxie, Kendall and Ciara.

Ragan and Roxie.

Roxie and Ragan.

I'm thinking this picture proves Roxie went out to eat barefoot after the Homecoming Game.

And all the women out there said, "I don't blame her!"

RANDOMNESS #2 - My niece, Brandi, gave my great-niece, Lauren, a lovely Ladybug Party last week. Pizza and ladybug cupcakes... I ask you, what could be better?

Brandi and Lauren.

The "must have" item for every Ladybug Party... a Ladybug Centerpiece.

Perfect for a two year-old birthday party (or any other event, for that matter)... little Ladybug Cupcakes.

Beautiful two year-old Lauren.

And Mackenzie!

Baby Mackenzie was at the party, too. (And I was happy, happy, happy!)

RANDOMNESS #3 - Because of other Fall activities, the Faulkner Family Fun Fall Drives are few and far between.

Actually, we have only had one...

And it was just me and Mikie...

And it lasted 46 minutes...

And since the leaves haven't turned in Central Alabama yet, I took pictures of cows (see above) and a little scenery.

This picture has a little bit of everything.

Misty mountains...

Golden sunset...


Fence post.

Sometimes I really outdo myself.

RANDOMNESS #4 - Dance Mom Story #1 - Many of you may not know this about me. I was a Dance Mom when Roxie was 5, 6, 7, 8 and 9.

That's right.

Five years.

I've always said I was a "little boy Mom" who was eventually blessed with a little girl. And it's true. I was thrilled to add a Roxie to the mix.

Sadly, "thrilled" does not translate into "I'm naturally good with the hair thing, the make-up thing, the painting the fingernails and toenails thing... or the Dance Mom thing."

Poor Roxie.

At her first dance recital, we arrived on time, and I went straight to the correct dressing room. I dressed her carefully, attached her headpiece, put a little mascara on her eyelashes and then pulled out the big guns... a new lip gloss with soft pink sparkles.

She was thrilled. I applied the gloss, and sat back to admire my handiwork.

Roxie was beautiful.

Simply beautiful.

And a little plain.

As I started looking at the other four and five year-olds in the room, it became apparent that thick theatrical make-up had been applied to most (if not all) of the other kids. Foundation, powder, eye shadow, eyeliner, blush, lip liner, lipstick, more powder.

And the final touch... GLITTER POWDER applied generously to the neck, chest and shoulder areas.

Oh, no. I had been a Dance Mom all of five minutes, and even though I had not forgotten any piece of the costume, I had obviously failed miserably in the stage make-up department.

But I stayed super calm, because that's my special Mom Gift.

I stay super calm in the midst of all things chaotic and non-calm.

When the Mom beside me put her glitter brush down for just a second to adjust straps, headpiece and blot lipstick, I made the executive decision to pick the brush up and I glitterized Roxie from head to toe in five seconds flat.

She looked like a pretty auburn-haired Tinkerbell.

To say she was happy with the end result would be an understatement.

I mean, light pink lip gloss AND glitter powder all in one day... It was a dream come true.

After Roxie performed, I helped her remove her last costume of the day and we made our way back to the auditorium seats. I fell into the seat beside Mike and stared blankly ahead.

"Are you okay?" he asked.

I nodded silently.

"Are you sure? I don't mean it in a bad way, but you're a little more... hmmm... sparkly than normal. Did a fairy explode backstage?"

Having never applied glitter powder before, I was unaware of how potent the stuff actually was. I looked down and saw my black pants had a lot of sparkle to them. My hands were sparkly. I can only assume my hair and face were also lit up with sparkles.

"Don't ask," I mumbled, grumpily.

"Is something wrong?"

"No. Nothing. I'm just the worst Backstage Dance Mom EVER. I didn't have enough make-up for Roxie AND I actually used some little girl's glitter powder brush without asking permission. I'm pretty sure she told on me to Miss Kim (Roxie's dance instructor)," I said. It sounded worse out loud than it did in my head.

"Well, do you know what you need to do next year to make it better?" Mike asked.

"Yes. We're going to need to put out some major bucks to hire a hair/make-up/glitter powder person to transform Roxie from a typical six year-old to a professional dance-type performer. Her face isn't that big, so I'm thinking we may be able to get away with spending $200 to $250 tops. It will totally be worth it."

"I'm thinking we purchase a glitter powder brush and you practice between now and then and become much better with the application process," Mikie countered.

I love him, but he can bring me down faster than any other human on the planet.

"It sounds stressful and a tad unnecessary to me, but I'll give it a shot," I told him in my best "calm" voice.

And he bought it!

I'll have another Dance Mom Story on Monday. It's about the five second costume changes.

Just thinking about it makes me cringe.

Weekend Happenings

Okay. Okay. Our Weekend Happenings are totally and completely out of control. People going here, there and everywhere and no one asking the Maternal Unit if she had any plans... at all.

It's enough to make a grown woman cry... a lot.

1. Mike and Josh are heading to Texas bright and early Friday morning. They are going to visit their eighth SEC stadium in College Station, Texas. Texas A&M is playing Auburn, and the guys are excited to add this stadium to their list.

Austin will be calling the Donoho game Friday night in Anniston, but on Saturday JSU has a "by" week. (That means they aren't playing a game. I didn't know if y'all were as up on football terms as I am.) Instead, Austin will be traveling to Heflin, Alabama to work a Music Festival with WVOK. He's excited, so I'm happy for him.

It wouldn't be my "thing," but I've finally accepted the kids have different "things" than The Enchanting Belinda. Hard to believe, but true.

2. Roxie and I will be spending the night with Grandmother Friday night and attending the Springville High School game. We're going to watch Zac march in the band.

3. On Saturday, Roxie has plans aplenty, and I'm going to work on a surprise project for Mikie. This will make him extremely nervous if he reads the blog while in Texas because he'll be afraid I'm throwing away some of his life memorabilia.

But that's okay. It might make him come home a little early.

4. Sunday is up in the air for Roxie, Austin and myself. No plans for after church yet... which means tons of plans will be revealed to me as soon as Pastor Keven says, "Amen!"

Have a lovely Fall weekend. I will try to do the same. Hopefully, I will have Texas A&M/Auburn pics to share with you Monday morning, as well as some Springville High School Band pics. (It's been awhile since I did the high school band "thang," so I'm anxious to see if I've still "got it.")

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


The Enchanting Belinda

Monday, October 14, 2013

Mindless Monday, Blog Linkage, Gingersnap Cookie Recipe

Good Monday morning!

RANDOMNESS #1 - As promised, here is another set of Top NINE Favorite Homecoming Court Pics...

Austin had to miss the Homecoming Game because of work in Anniston, but Josh represented The Brothers well... in a Captain America t-shirt and a camo cap.

I may have forgotten to tell him to spruce up a little.

I may have forgotten to put on some important foundational garments before I left the house, too.

What can I say? It was a little hectic Friday.

Roxie and Mike before they had to walk onto the football field.

The following four or five pics are my favorites because they show Mike and Roxie's relationship so well. Talking, talking, talking.

I also like the pics because they show how relaxed the two of them are together. Relaxed hands. Relaxed faces. They are oblivious to the High School Band, homecoming announcer and other members of the Court around them.

By this time, I was worried Mr. Caufield, the principal, was going to walk onto the field and "sssshhh" them... which would have been so embarrassing to me... but not so much to Mikie and Roxie.

Why won't they be quiet?

This beautiful chick, Miss Lauren, was crowned 2013 Homecoming Queen. Isn't she lovely? (She had such good "crown" hair.)

Mike's rose.

I know I posted this one Friday. And I know it isn't as clear as it should be. And I know I should have a perfect picture as my most favorite from the entire Homecoming Week set of pictures.

But I really, really like this one.

NOTE - Roxie cried twice during the entire hectic week of searching for the perfect homecoming attire and preparing for the Pep Rally, Parade and Homecoming Game... and I only cried four times... in front of Roxie.

I thought that was pretty good for the Faulkner Drama Queen Club.

I'll post another Top Ten Favorite Pics of Homecoming Week on Friday.

RANDOMNESS #2 - I didn't want you to think my whole life revolved around ONE big event this past weekend.

Oh, no.

There were TWO big events.

My great-niece, Lauren, turned the Big Two!

I'll post the rest of her Ladybug Party pics on Friday.

RANDOMNESS #3 - The Sunday School Newsletter has been out for several weeks, so I'm going to go ahead and post the article I wrote for the newsletter on the blog today.


As I was driving down my street last week, I noticed a small, bright green stegosaurus walking down the front steps of a neighbor’s house. He was around three feet tall, so I knew he was a very young stegosaurus with his growing days still ahead of him.

When he reached the last step, he skipped to a van in the driveway and disappeared into the backseat. He was obviously on his way to a destination where I could only assume other dinosaurs would be gathering... and I realized I was smiling.

I loved the days when my two guys dressed like pirates… or super heroes… or dinosaurs. I smiled a lot back in those days.

I continued on my way, and I started thinking of the many errands I had to run, the heartache some of my friends and family were facing and some of the difficult, grown-up decisions Mike and I were going to have to make in the coming days.

In a few minutes, I felt sad… and old… and more than just a little defeated. Being a “glass half-empty” kind of chick (or, as I like to call it, “gloom, despair and agony on me“ gal), if left unattended, my mind will quickly assume the worst possible scenario of any and all scenarios. If someone hands me a full glass of anything, it is apparently in my DNA to spill half of whatever it is onto the ground.

God made me special that way!

I knew at a very young age Philippians 4:6-7 was written especially for Belinda Faulkner, 205 Crista Circle, Gardendale, Alabama. No one else. Just me!

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

Life is a little too short and a lot too precious to waste it with worry, and I am extremely blessed because I never have to be anxious about anything.

Even the occasional sighting of small, bright green stegosauruses.

Blog Linkage - Go to Confessions of a Pioneer Woman under My Blog List and click on today's post entitled "Ten Things I Love About October."

Love, love.

Gingersnap Cookie Recipe

You will need the following:

3/4 cup shortening
1 cup sugar
4 tablespoons molasses
1 egg
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon ginger
Extra sugar for dipping

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

2. Cream together shortening and sugar.

3. Add molasses and egg, beating well.

4. By hand, mix in dry ingredients, in order, and stir well after each addition.

5. Stir together until smooth.

6. Spoon into small balls, dip in sugar, then place on lightly greased cookie sheet.

7. Wet the bottom of a glass, dip in sugar and press the cookie dough balls into flat circles.

8. Bake for 12 to 13 minutes.

Mikie loves him some gingersnaps... and these were no exception.

Have a grand and glorious Monday. I'll be back at the end of the week with the last of the Top Ten Favorite Pics from Homecoming Week, pics from Lauren's Ladybug Party, pics from our First Fun Fall Ride, A Dance Mom Story (one of many) and much, much more.

Take care, and I'll talk to you Friday.


The Enchanting Belinda
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