Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Grateful for February

Some months it's easier to see the turmoils around us instead of the blessings.  This month could have been like that for me.

My regular screening mammogram came back with "localized densities" which weren't there last time that required me to go for follow up, involving more focused images and an ultrasound.  The waiting was... not fun.  Fortunately, while I do have several cysts - everything is benign.  (Can I get a "hallelujah!!"?) 

But for some the relief doesn't always come so quickly.  There can be weeks, months, even years when the everyday blessings are difficult to find.  But they are always there.  They are all around us.  We just have to pause and look...  really look... for them.

I Am Thankful For:

Warm February days
Walks at the park

The treea beginning to bud
Shrimp and Grits


Spring Fever
An overnight getaway
Getting the test results I wanted to hear
Blooming daffodils

Jelly beans
Skipping the gym

What did you find to be thankful for during February?

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Sunday, February 26, 2017

Sunday Inspiraqtion: A Life of Love

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Cleaning Make Up Brushes - the DIY way

You probably wash your face each day to clean away all the makeup, sweat, and oils that collect on your skin over the course of the day.  But what about your makeup brushes?  When was the last time you gave them a good cleansing? 

If it's been awhile - you are technically brushing all of that grime right back onto your face when you apply your makeup.  This can lead to everything from clogged pores, muddy looking makeup, and even infection.  YUCK!!

Fortunately, I have a super simple (and inexpensive) way of cleaning my brushes on a regular basis.

Mix 1 tablespoon Dawn dish soap (the original blue kind)  with 1/2 cup warm water in a small glass.

Dip each brush into the mixture, then swish it around to really clean the bristles. Brushes I use for "sticky" makeups - cream, gel, or liquid - I let soak for a minute or two before swishing.  You'll be amazed how quickly and easily the makeup comes of the brush.

This is the stipple brush I use for applying cream blush before cleaning:

And after: 

It really works that well, and quickly!

After cleaning the brushes, I put them in a bath of clear cool water for a few minutes and then give them all a good rinse.

And this is all the nasty stuff that came out of the brushes!  Ew...

I roll the brushes in a clean towel and give them a little squeeze to get the excess water out of the bristles.   Then place them up right in the (now rinsed out) glass to dry. 

And that's it.  Easy peasy, lemon squeezey! 

Do you clean your makeup brushes or applicators regularly?

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Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Knoxville Getaway

The Man of the House and I have a habit of planning our Valentine date on a day other than February 14th.  This saves us from having to fight the crowds for a table at a restaurant and keeps things a little more personal for us. 

This year we waited until the weekend after Valentine's Day and decided to get away for the night.  We thought about some of our usual haunts - the Biltmore Estate, Gatlinburg, etc.  Then the Man of the House suggested driving up to Knoxville, Tennessee since we've never really been there before other than taking the kids up to the zoo once several years ago.

He found us a nice hotel right downtown beside World's Fair Park and within walking distance of well... a lot!  We arrived early Saturday evening and spent the whole day Sunday.

we had brunch at The French Market.  The Man of the House enjoyed an omelette, while I tamed my sweet tooth with a delicious Nutella crepe.  Yum!

It was a beautiful weekend to just stroll around town and explore.  Sunday started overcast, but quickly cleared up with temperatures in the 60's. And walk we did!!

Knoxville has a nice little Veteran's Memorial located at one end of World's Fair Park.

We went up into the Sunsphere, which was originally built for the 1982 World's Fair.  Great views of Knoxville!

There were several musical groups playing in Market Square. And people out enjoying the music and the sunshine.

Surprisingly,  I didn't take many photos on this trip - just enjoyed the time with my sweet hubby. 

Conclusion:  Knoxville is a nice quiet college town.  Perfect for a day trip and a little exploring. 

Friday, February 17, 2017

Tupelo Honey Shrimp and Grits

One of my favorite vacation spots is Charleston, SC.  There are two foods that always come to mind when it wanders down to the low country -  She Crab Soup and Shrimp and Grits.  While I have enjoyed the She Crab Soup at a couple of different Charleston area restaurants over the years, I had never tried Shrimp and Grits.  (I know... GASP!!) 

Then, a couple of months ago the Man of the House and I had dinner at a local restaurant - Tupelo Honey Café, where he ordered the Shrimp and Grits.  I tried one bite.  And have not been able to stop thinking about that creamy, spicy yumminess since! 

So imagine my delight when I found they have made the recipe for Shrimp and Goat Cheese Grits with roasted red pepper sauce accessible online!! 

I thought the recipe would be complicated, but it came together very quickly and easily.  Something I would not hesitate to make again.

I did use a purchased creole seasoning rather than making the recipe they provide for making your own.  And personally, I will decrease the amount I use next time as it was a bit spicy for me.  (But the Man of the House loved the heat.  So, it's all just a matter of taste.)

If you want to try this delicious dish for yourself, you can find the recipe HERE:

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Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Never Alone

Do you ever wonder where God is?  Maybe you're experiencing a time of confusion, pain, sadness or chaos.  During these times, it's not unusual to feel as if God is very distant.

He's not.

God is not some distant being watching us as though observing a play.  He is here.

Scripture tells us that God is Immanuel - God with us.  Active in our lives. Jesus even came to live among us for a time.  God's Holy Spirit lives within His children. 

He promises to never leave us. 

He is always with us.  All around us. Within us.  We just need to be still and take time to look for Him, listen for His voice, and feel Him with us.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Apple Pizza Snacks

The grand kid eats like a hobbit:  breakfast, second breakfast, elevenses, lunch, afternoon tea, dinner, supper.  I'm on the lookout for healthy - but still yummy - snack ideas for when I have the little guy for the day.  So when I saw a posting on Pinterest for apple cookies I knew I was going to have to try a version of these! 

These treats are full of protein, a little sweetness, and plenty of kid (and adult) pleasing deliciousness.

1 apple
All natural peanut butter
Sunflower seeds
Slivered almonds
Dark chocolate chips

Slice the apple, making rounds and cut out the core center.

Spread the apple rounds with the peanut butter. 

Top with the dark chocolate chips, craisins, sunflower seeds and almonds.


Oma tested... grand kid approved!!

What's your favorite healthy snack food?

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Thursday, February 2, 2017

Currently... February 2017

January is over... already?? Well, that certainly didn't take long - did it?  It was a busy, and productive month for me.  I've been getting some decluttering accomplished.  Had my yearly physical, where I found out my cholesterol has improved but is still too high.  Ugh.  (Probably definitely from all that junkie food I was eating at the end of last year!)  I was sick with a virus which gave me a sore throat for a solid week.  We experienced our first snowfall of the winter.  And celebrated the grand kid's 5th birthday.  I can only hope February is just as wonderful - if not even better!

READING:  Trying to finish up an advance read copy of "Full" by Asheritah Ciuciu for a review this month.  Getting ready to start "The Art of Hearing Heartbeats" by Jan-Phillip Sendker.  And hoping to read "Stuart Little" with the grand kid this month.

EATING:  With the exception of the birthday overload last weekend, I have been eating better.  More fruits and veggies.  Making myself eat breakfast - usually oatmeal with berries.  Drinking more water. 

WORKING ON:  Decluttering! Last week, the Man of the House dropped off 3 bags and a box of donations at the local Goodwill.  And there is so much more to go.

ENJOYING:  The feeling after I get up early with the Man of the House and go walk for 30 minutes on the treadmill.  I won't lie... I do not enjoy the getting up that early.  But the feeling afterward, that's a good way to start the day!

ANTICIPATING:  Seeing my better eating habits and more exercise lead to improved cholesterol numbers and hopefully some weight loss.

FEELING: A little tired, probably from staying up too late reading and then getting up early.

What are you up to Currently?  Leave a comment and let me know!
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