Thursday, March 31, 2016

My Favorite April Fool's Day Prank AND Apple Butter Baked Beans

Good Thursday evening!

Just a couple of things...

RANDOMNESS - Roxie and Mikie went on their 13th Annual Father/Daughter Steak Date at Firebirds this past Saturday night.

The tradition goes something like this:

1. Roxie buys a new dress, shoes and accessories.

2. Roxie picks a nice restaurant to try (or revisit).

3. They take selfies.

4. They leave me in the driveway.

5. I eat a bowl of cereal and binge watch Gilmore Girls.


I don't know what's going on with the face.

There it is again...

Just from another angle.

They're pretty cute, even if I do say so myself.

Apple Butter Baked Beans

You will need the following:

56 ounce pork and beans (drained)
1 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons dry mustard
1/2 cup barbeque sauce
1/2 cup onion (chopped)
1/2 cup bell peppers (chopped)
1/2 cup bacon bits
1/2 cup apple butter

1. Grease a 9" x 13" baking dish.

2. Pour all ingredients into dish and stir to combine.

3. Bake at 400 degrees for 1 hour.

I have a baked bean recipe I have used for years and years and years. However, this Easter I tried this Pinterest recipe, and I must say, I think I like it better.

My Favorite April Fool's Day Prank

When the kids were still in Elementary School, I cooked a crockpot roast with potatoes and carrots overnight, and served a full-course Sunday dinner for breakfast before Mike went to work and the kids went to school. I even made a chocolate cake for dessert.

It totally threw ALL of my guys off their game. (There was a lot of whining.)

I took it one step further and served S'mores Pop Tarts with milk for dinner.

They were not amused, but I thought it was hilarious.

Have a great April weekend. I'll post again in a couple of days with more of this and a little of that.


The Enchanting Belinda

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Happy National Puppy Day, Nana B Stories and Apple Dapple Cake

Good Wednesday afternoon!

RANDOMNESS - It's National Puppy Day, and it just so happens a puppy lives with us.


I think not!

Roxie rescued Tucker the day after Christmas. He was approximately four to six weeks old...

Which means now he is between four and four and a half months old.

Which means he is/will be a very large dog!

Here are a few things you should know about Tuck...

1. He LOVES the Dog Park.

2. He tolerates the creek.

3. He wants to play ALL THE TIME.

4. When you play with him and finally go back into the house, he howls and cries for about three minutes before something diverts his attention.

5. When he lunges (in love) at you, it would be smart to always be braced against a large, sturdy oak.

If a large, sturdy oak cannot be found, I cannot guarantee you will be able to stay on your feet for any length of time...

From all the "love lunging," you know.

6. He is the sweetest dog...

7. And we love him lots.

Nana B Stories - I kind of have the best job in the world right now, and this is why...

1. I hang out with the six and under crowd three to five times a week. There is not a lot of judgment in this age group. As long as I get in the floor, play and give them LOTS of one-on-one eye contact, they are pretty pleased with my job performance.

2. I am greeted at doors with squeals of delight, jumps, skips and arms thrown open wide. Sometimes, depending on the age of my peeps, I even hear, "She's here! She's here!"

3. When I am inevitably asked, "What are we going to do today," I respond with, "Paint, build a fort, read a ton of books, play a new game, go on a nature walk and MAKE RAIN!"

4. My skin is soft... my jewelry is "bootiful"... my van is SO big... my impressions of Disney characters are dead-on... I am the BEST COOK EVER... and my singing voice is superb. I know this because I am asked to sing the same songs again and again and again.

All of the above is true, but I would be a little dishonest if I didn't also tell you sometimes there are tears and frustration and a foot stomping or two. Just like kisses, hugs and tickles, those things are part of life when you are a member of the six and under crowd.

Thankfully, kids are made with the ability to move past the negatives a little faster than folks my age.

I think they have already figured out the positives in life are what we all should be spending the majority of our time contemplating... not the negatives.


I think I may have to put that specific thought into a song appropriate for preschoolers...

Or stitch it on a pillow...

Or maybe a tattoo.

Yeah. Definitely, the tattoo thing.

Apple Dapple Cake

I've posted it before, but once again, it's a cake worth sharing!

You will need the following for the cake:

3 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon soda
1 cup pecans, chopped
1 cup vegetable oil
2 cups sugar
3 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
3 cups raw apples, peeled and finely chopped

You will need the following for the sauce:

1 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup milk
3/4 cup butter

1. Mix oil, sugar, eggs and vanilla.

2. Sift together flour, salt and soda. Add to the first mixture.

3. Fold in pecans and apples.

4. Bake in a tube pan at 350 degrees for one hour.

5. For the sauce, mix and cook ingredients three minutes after it begins to gently boil, stirring constantly.

6. Pour over hot cake while cake is still in pan.

7. Let cake cool COMPLETELY before removing.

Great cake!

Have a good rest of the week. I'll be talking to you soon!


The Enchanting Belinda

Saturday, March 19, 2016

It's Saturday... Blog Linkage AND Refreshing Cake

Good late Saturday night!

I like the freedom I've given myself to post whenever I please. Also, knowing I don't HAVE TO make it a super long post because I've made myself wait from Friday until the next Friday is wonderful.

Short posts are good, too.

I'm lovin' the short posts.

NUGGETS AND TIDBITS - I do not care for the Silky Cashew Milk...

Or whatever it may be called.

I was "duped" into trying it this week on my Cheerios, and I am still unhappy about the decision.

I'm pretty sure I will feel the same way about the Silky Almond Milk.

Nuts do not good milk make!

RANDOMNESS #1 - Here are a few more wedding pics. They are still trickling in, and I'll have more to post in days to come, I am sure.


Courtney's Aunt Sandy took this pic at the reception. I LOVE it...

And still, it tends to worry me just a little, too.

I wonder why?

RANDOMNESS #2 - The Chick went on a beach trip this past Spring Break with some friends from school. I missed seeing her, but I'm glad she had a good time.

Here is a sampling of the 2,043 pics (more or less) taken on the trip...

Pretty, pretty chicks...

And three are redheads!

Back in the day, I went on annual beach trips with a girl named Kellett.

Julianna is her daughter.

And the traditions continue!

Just Roxie.

Blog Linkage - Go to www.kellehampton.com and check out the pictures in her most recent post about Spring.

Her pictures always inspire.

Refreshing Cake

I have posted this before, but it is the time of year to start making this easy and delicious cake, so I wanted to share it ONE MORE TIME...

You will need the following:

1 box yellow cake mix
4 eggs
2/3 cup oil
11 ounce can Mandarin oranges with juice

For the icing:

1 small can crushed pineapple
12 ounce container of Cool Whip
Large box instant vanilla pudding

1. Mix first four ingredients. Batter will be lumpy.

2. Grease and flour oblong cake pan.

3. Bake at 325 degrees for about 30 minutes or until done.

4. Cool and chill.

5. Mix ingredients for icing together. Ice cake and keep in refrigerator.

6. Serve cold.

NOTE - It is better on the second day.

Have a worshipful Sunday! Until next time...


The Enchanting Belinda

Monday, March 14, 2016

My New Favorite Things... That Were Once My Old Favorite Things... But I Forgot!

Good Monday evening!

I'm hoping to have more posts like this in the future.



To the point.

And not necessarily about anything considered "useful information."

RANDOMNESS #1 - Back in the day, I LOVED parks...

And not just the same ol' neighborhood park.

I loved going to different parks all over the place with the kids.

And I remembered that little tidbit last week when Mike and I took Miss Judith to a park in Hartselle.

RANDOMNESS #2 - Tonight I went to a local "Bark Park." I have never gone to a Dog Park before, but obviously, a park is a park is a park...

And I cannot wait to go again tomorrow afternoon.

This is the biggest dog I've ever seen in my whole life.

I don't have a picture of it, but when he ran by me later in the evening he stepped on my foot...

And it kinda hurt.

Guess what else?

He's only eight months old.

He's a PUP!

Very, very sweet dog.

These three look like they are killing each other, but in reality they are just wrestling...

Just like little boys.

Also, very, very sweet dogs.

Mike wants Tuck to be comfortable in the water, so he gently urged him to go in for a little dip.

Observe Tuck's tail.

That is his "sad" tail.

Water may not be his favorite thing...

However, Mikie is definitely one of his favorite things, so two minutes after climbing out of the creek, all was forgiven.

RANDOMNESS #3 - And last, but not least, peek-a-boo has once again become a favorite.

What is that saying?

"The more things change, the more they stay the same."

True. Very true.

Have a great evening.


The Enchanting Belinda

Friday, March 11, 2016

Weekend Happenings AND Blog Linkage

Good Friday evening!

We have a lot to talk about, don't we?

Let's get started, shall we?

RANDOMNESS #1 - During all of the wedding prep, parties, etc., Austin had a birthday. He turned 25 years old, and The Lovely Melia planned a family lunch at Costa's the Saturday before the birthday, AND a very delicious dinner the night of his birthday.

To be honest, I had once thought turning the birthday celebration planning over to someone else would bother me a little, but as it turns out...

Not so much!

Actually, it is great.

Austin and Melia.

Austin and Roxie.

RANDOMNESS #2 - Mike and I hosted Josh and Courtney's Rehearsal Dinner at The Freight House Restaurant in Hartselle.

It turned out very well, and I was able to enjoy my meal without any prep or clean-up...

Which I have decided is the best way to host anything!

My friends, Cam and Jeff, made these chocolate-covered Bride and Groom pretzels for the Rehearsal Dinner as a gift to everyone who attended.

To say they were well-received would be a huge understatement.

The happy couple.

Mikie, me and Josh.

RANDOMNESS #3 - You know how people always say, "Don't worry. Everything will come together. You'll see," right before the wedding?

Well, that really happened last Saturday.

Everything did come together, and it was a sweet, sweet day.

Courtney collects Pops, so these were used on top of the Wedding Cake.

Judith and Aunt Roxie.

I had access to the Groom Room because...

Well, I was the Mother of the Groom, you know.

Roxie spent a lot of time going back and forth from the Bride Room to the Groom Room.

Mike was so handsome.

I'm buying him a dark gray vest to add to his wardrobe...

Sooner than later.

This is Courtney's family. Sara Grace is her niece. Kimberly is her sister (and Sara Grace's mom). Chris, her dad, Judith and her mom, Donna.

Courtney and Sara Grace.

Roxie, Josh and Austin.

Grandpa, Grandma, Courtney, Josh and Grandmother.

This is my favorite so far...

And maybe this one.

Roxie and Melia.

It's a little blurry, but they still look great.

NOTE - I know what you're thinking.

Where are pics of Melia, you and Mikie?

That's a very good question, and I promise there will be an overload of Melia, Mike and Enchanting Belinda pics in the next post.

I didn't take pics at the wedding and reception, so I'm collecting pics from Facebook friends, etc.

Something to look forward to next week!

Blog Linkage - If you are planning a fun movie night for your family soon, go to www.tatertotsandjello.com and enjoy the post about Living Room Camping. She set up a really cute and quick party without a ton of prep work.

Loved it!

Weekend Happenings

1. I met The Chick in Alex City this afternoon to see her before she takes a Spring Break trip with some friends.

It wasn't enough time...

But it will have to do.

2. Mike and I are not doing much of anything Saturday, and that is a good thing. We need to piddle inside and outside of the house to catch up from the month of February which I have now declared "The Month of the Wedding."

Nothing but wedding "stuff" was dealt with on a day-to-day basis...

And that means we are in much need of a day of piddling.



3. Mike and I have church and Bible Study Sunday, so that means things are getting back to normal in this family.

Austin and Melia are doing their thing.

Josh, Courtney and Judith are doing their thing.

Roxie is doing her thing.

Back in the day, we used to camp during Spring Break, but for now, those days are just fond memories.

I'm sure we'll do it again one day with the grandkids, but not this year.

Thank goodness.

Not this year!

Have a grand March weekend. I'll be back next week with more Spring stuff!


The Enchanting Belinda

P.S. It's hard to believe it has been a week since the wedding. It was a lovely day, and I'm very happy for this little family of three.

Very happy, indeed.
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