Friday, September 28, 2018

5 thing Friday - Mother, landscaping, toad, weeds, breakfast

 Last Friday I didn't post...too busy, I guess.
I took the day off and went to see my mother in Brenham.  She had her list all ready: library, post office, feed store, Wal-Mart.  We got all of it done in record time, then put up all of her groceries and heated up some beans and some broccoli cheese rice to go with fried chicken. {Wal-Mart does not have the best of fried chicken, but we were hungry, so oh, well!}  It was a good visit!  She seems to be bouncing back from her accident and was in good spirits.  So far.
Hubby cut down the shrubs that were looking poorly - they were 24 years old.  In the midst of the rain we have had, I haven't made near enough headway in working on the front landscaping beds, so I feel anxious to get 'er done.  Meanwhile, my crepe myrtle is blooming for the first time all summer!  I'm looking forward to sunny days where I can really get in there and work on this area.
Do you see it?
While we were loading up the burn barrel on Sunday a shape moved in the leaves and spooked me!
 It's a Gulf Coast toad, or a coastal plain toad. Harmless, but it gave me a start.
I also identified these pretty weeds that were covering our little hill - they are Senna Accidentalis, or septic weed.
 What a crappy name for beautiful yellow flowers!  They have really exploded with all of the rain.
Hubby and I try to eat in whenever we can, although we do enjoy going and doing on the weekends.  For Sunday mornings at Highlands, I pack about 4 eggs, some bacon or sausage, leftover fruit from the week, maybe some leftover veggies, and whip up a breakfast feast! (here I even have leftover napkins from Bubbie's Court of Honor
Its the best start to our week ahead!
P.S. One week from today is our 33rd wedding anniversary!

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Weekend re-cap: Brenham, The Dig Pub, STW, TNL, Perisso, rain

I was off on Friday, traveling to Brenham to check in on my mother.    She had a list all ready to go, coupons in hand, and dressed in a cute pink dress to run errands and buy groceries.  She seems to be doing well, overall - good spirits, great appetite.  I'm going to stop fretting about her so much, but I probably will still visit every 3 weeks or so.
I got home mid-afternoon and worked on the front landscaping until Hubby came home, then showered and got dressed to go eat at The Dig Pub.  We split a Hatch green chile burger and a Monte Cristo, with some Scotch eggs and dark beer on the side.  I felt exhausted and was asleep by 10.
The next day I got some indoor putseying done since the rain started up again, foiling my landscape project.  I went to Kohl's and bought some end of season things to wear - cute tops like the one above, and some shorts.  The calendar might say its Fall, but I know Summer will sneak back here and there.  We picked up a pizza to eat at Save The World, played some cards, then headed over to Torr Na Lochs for the September pick-up party.
I know I stated at one point that I wanted rain, but its kind of dragging on...skies were gray, but the entertainment was delightful {look, the saxophonist from Bent Oak!}, and the owners grilled up fajitas with the fixin's for everyone.
We enjoyed dinner at the event tent, listening to music awhile, then headed upstairs to admire the view.
It was cool out, smelled of woodsmoke, and was just delightful.
We left around 7 and went to Highlands to sit at the firepit {no luck - the firewood was still damp}.  I got up early the next day to fix us breakfast and enjoy some nature-watching for a little while.  It was so quiet and calm and looked like it was going to rain all day.  We planned no projects, which was nice.
Some white-tail deer came ambling through.
Followed by a cow to the back fence giving me a stare...  We hung out at Highlands until 2 p.m. then stopped by Perisso's for an hour or so, admiring the now-depleted vines and sitting on a picnic table under a large oak to play more cards. {I took zero pics of that}  We were home by 5:30 and I fixed smothered pork chops, loaded mashed potatoes, fried okra, and broccoli with carrots for dinner.  Scout and Michelle brought a new game over and we played it until 10 p.m., at which time I turned into a pumpkin and had to hit the hay!   It was a nice ending to a quiet weekend. 

Monday, September 24, 2018

Mealplan Monday #212

Monday - Mrs. Ringle's Chicken, couscous, salad
Tuesday - Grilled Cheese and Bacon with avocado, fruit
Wednesday - (leftovers) Rib Plate with skillet potatoes and green beans
Thursday - Pasta Skillet (with freezer marinara), salad
Friday - Tilapia with lemony breadcrumbs, corn, mac and cheese
Saturday - TBD
Sunday - Orange Chicken over rice, peas

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Weekend re-cap: beering and eating

We didn't hang out all weekend at Highlands like we usually much rain.  And, I had high hopes of starting to work on the front yard landscaping issues at Camp Rustown, but the sky had other plans.
 So we went to STW and had their new pumpkin ale while watching the skies over Burnet open up.  I have to say, it was quite nice.  They have a new covered seating area and lots of people had the same idea.
We played some cards, listened to old 70's rock...
 ...and stopped by to check on Mabel who has developed a problem with her battery keeping a charge.  (It's always something, right?)  It was threatening more rain, so we didn't stay long.
I made a breakfast casserole for dinner, then we headed over to Adelbert's, followed by  Circle Brewing Co.  It still seems funny to me that we have all of these breweries so close to our house and never knew.  Not that we guzzle beer every day - but in the heat and humidity we've had, its pretty pleasant to sit outside and enjoy a beer and a friendly game of cards. We pooped out around 10.
The Girl and traveling friend made it safely to Dallas where they spent the night.  So Hubby and I took ourselves to breakfast on Sunday to a chicken and waffles place.  So many Austin eateries look like this now - super trendy and hipster.  Check out the hanging chairs, black and white wallpaper, painted rug on a wood floor.  There was also what looked like a dead tree hanging upside down with Christmas lights strung through it. 
We had something called the "what the cluck".  It was amazing.  Napping and putseying followed until around 5 p.m.  It wasn't a weekend where we got much done...unless you count eating.
 I made The Girl a vanilla Bundt cake with chocolate glaze.
And Hubby made baby back ribs.  We made baked potatoes and my favorite BBQ baked beans, too, while we hung out on the back patio.  The Girl finally came home around 4:30 and Teddy was ecstatic.  We visited with her about her trip, drank a little wine, and called it a day around 9:30. When Monday dawned, we all packed up for the day to go our separate ways - the rest of us to work, The Girl to Houston.  And its cliche to say, but the weekend ended like all others do - way too fast.

Monday, September 17, 2018

Mealplan Monday #211

Monday - Leftovers!  (:
Tuesday - Salami and mozzarella Sandwich rolls with roasted red peppers
Wednesday - Chicken Noodle Soup (using leftover Comfort Chicken from freezer)
Thursday - Chinese take-out!
Friday - Fish Tacos, Black Bean Pineapple Salsa
Saturday - yoyo
Sunday - Seasoned Pork Chops, Loaded Mashed Potatoes, carrots

Friday, September 14, 2018

Crockpot Mulligatawney Soup

I'm pretty sure I originally found this recipe from A Year of Slow Cooking.  And since we have had rain pretty much non-stop for over a week, it feels like fall is here - even if its super muggy outside. {side note - why oh why did I not plant grass before we got all of this rain?!}  Anyhow, I made a few adjustments to it, so I will post my version.
Mulligatawney Soup

Remove the yellow fatty stuff (ugh) from 2 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken thighs and place in the bottom of the crock pot.  To that add:
2 small cut up Gala apples (no need to peel)
3 or 4 carrots, peeled and cut into small chunks
1 small onion, diced
1 can fire roasted tomatoes with their juice
1/3 c. golden raisins
the juice from 1 small lemon
3 c. broth - I had beef on hand this time
2 T curry powder and 1/4 t nutmeg
1 cup prepared rice

YUM - all of those veggies and a curry seasoned broth.  (It already smells wonderful!)
I set the crock pot to low and 8 hours.  When Hubby got home, he stirred it well to shred up the chicken, added the rice, and made garlic toast. I don't have a picture of the finished product as I was tired and still had laundry to do...It makes a LOT of soup for my little group, so I'm sure we will enjoy it again as leftovers, probably tomorrow since we have more rainy weather coming our way.
Happy Weekend!

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Happy Birthday, sweet Chloe!

Happy Birthday to The Girl!!  Twenty-seven years of love and laughter - how can all that time have flown by so fast?  I'll still remember her as a sweet little girlie, no matter how many birthdays she's had!

So mayst thou live, dear! many years,
In all the bliss that life endears,...
~Thomas Hood, "To My Daughter, On Her Birthday"

Monday, September 10, 2018

Mealplan Monday #210

Monday - Comfort Chicken, mashed potatoes, salad
Tuesday - Green Chile Tacos with cheese, sour cream, etc.
Wednesday - French Bread Pizzas   HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO THE GIRL!!
Thursday - Mulligatawny Soup*, garlic toast
Friday - Buttery Green Olive Chicken*, couscous, peas
Saturday - TBD
Sunday - Sausage and Ranch Hash Brown Casserole*, biscuits, fruit
*will share recipes!


Friday, September 7, 2018

Leavin' on a jet plane

Today The Girl is headed off on vacation (well-deserved and far overdue, I might add) to Ireland with one of her college roomies.  They will visit the roomie's Irish relatives and explore castles, breweries, museums, parks...and have a wonderful time I'm sure.  She showed me how she expertly packed, including some snacks for a long trip.  She's got foreign monies, an itinerary, and plans to "un plug".  Teddy is all set up at Camp Rustown with food and a bed.  And above all, she has a level head, a lot of smarts, and a taste for adventure.
 And her dad is worried sick about it, and making me feel nervous, too...but that will always be the case.  Why do kids have to grow up and travel so far away where you cannot rescue them?  Because if they didn't, you would never let them go and they would never grow and learn about themselves and how they fit into the world.  Then later, when you can't be there, they wouldn't be able to go it on their own.  It's just the way of it.  Whether we like it or not!
Safe travels, Coco.  We send love and good thoughts with you and hope you have an awesome trip!

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

Weekend re-cap: on call, El Chilito, Adelbert's, Cafe Java, Fall!

We stayed pretty close to home on Saturday and Sunday since I was on call  7a - 7p.  This always makes Hubby kind of grumpy as he had no one to take up to Highlands - the boys were otherwise occupied.  I reminded him more than once that my job was kind of crucial to our finances... 
On Saturday we ate lunch at El Chilito.  While the tacos were very fresh and delicious, and the service was great, they are kind of pricey.  (Maybe we are getting spoiled by the cheaper version of eating out in Burnet...)  It was hot outside, but they had shaded picnic tables.
I did a lot of catch-up around the house:  cleaned the oven, took a load of stuff to Goodwill, washed my car, worked on the filing pile on my desk, cleaned bathrooms, wrote my mother a letter*, ran to Wal-mart, set out some fall decor.
I'm loving the natural look for fall decor - I want to rid my house of the orange-y pumpkin-y stuff.
In the evening we visited a brewery that was suggested by a friend at work.  For $15 each, we got a flight of 6 half pours and a glass to keep and bring back for $2 off future pours.  We enjoyed some fish and chips from the food trailer outside, and some live acoustic guitar. I'm sure we will visit again soon!
They, like the other breweries we enjoy, are in a metal industrial style building.  They featured art for sale from local artists, and had darts and a giant Connect Four game.  We stayed until 9ish then ordered pizza to take home to the boys. (aka other people who live at our house)  On Sunday, it was much the same, but I got a little bit more done after we ate the breakfast "special" at Cafe Java.  {We decided that breakfasts out are waaay too overpriced in Austin, same as lunch!} I got called in for a short time and Hubby decided to fire up the grill.  Scout and Dutch came over for some delightful baby back ribs, potato salad, and bacon-y green beans. Everything was so good and I fell exhausted into my bed at 9 p.m. and slept like a rock.  
And now since we've had Labor Day, it's officially Fall in my opinion!

*You may think snail mail is old-fashioned, but as my mother says, checking the mail and finding a letter from someone is like finding treasure - its the first thing she opens!

Monday, September 3, 2018

Mealplan Monday #209

I sure do miss my photographer...
Monday - Mrs. Ringle's Chicken, salad, mashed potatoes
Tuesday - Fruited Chicken Salad on croissants
Wednesday - Quick Black Bean Chili*, fritos (The Girl will be here!)
Thursday - Parmesan Bow Tie Skillet*, salad
Friday - Pesto Tilapia*, garlic toast, peas and carrots
Saturday - YOYO
Sunday - Taco Chicken Bites*, seasoned rice, borracho beans, Tomato Soup Cake*
*all recipes I need to share soon!

Hooray for September!


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