Having blog issues

Having blog issues

I changed my theme and messed up my blog ūüôĀ

Hope to be up running by Mon eve.  Hopefully all pins should still work though.

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Build Baby Ellie’s Library baby shower

Build Baby Ellie’s Library baby shower


On Saturday I hosted our family’s baby shower for my daughter in law. ¬† She was having three showers so decided to go with a book theme with mine. ¬†I had a mom who read to me every day so I know how books bonds parents. ¬† Plus books will give her the world to see too as she reads them. ¬† ¬†So everyone brought a book with their gift instead of buying a card. ¬†Believe it or not out of 25 plus books she didn’t receive any duplicates.



The cutest invitations ever made by a niece … thanks Eileen!! You rocked!




I did not take any pictures of the food once all the desserts were there from my sister in laws. ¬†I also didn’t take any pix of the table decorations. ¬†I got busy and just completely forgot to take pix. ¬†I did take pix of her opening gifts. ¬†There were several people who sent gifts that were not there. ¬†So I put those pix on FB so those who sent a gift seen her enjoying it.

I do a blog on Pinterest so you know there were a few details from it. ¬†I did omit a few things from my original to do list. ¬†I got busy and was then smart about what I could and couldn’t do. ¬†(truly helped on not stressing too!) ¬†I had planned on doing lil book signs for food and do regret I didn’t find time for them.

There is a HUGE difference on hosting a party at a different location.  I have hosted Christmas a few times with 25 plus people.  However when you have to carry everything you really change your game plan.  I have some beautiful crystal bowls but the thought of carrying them led to using mostly Dollar Tree serving ware.   I would have found some cute dishes to put the silverware in but using plastic cups was more sensible.  I still had 4 bins of stuff and coolers even after downsizing twice.

I had a few a mishaps … cake was not done to specifications. ¬†I should have made a few more side dishes. ¬†I forgot to make the coffee and left the other waters in hubby’s car. ¬†Other than that it went really well. ¬†We had a great turnout with E ¬†& A getting some fabulous gifts! ¬† While we were at the shower, the men in our family met up for drinks to celebrate Eric becoming a dad. ¬† It was a great afternoon and so thankful that we could do it for them!




last name goneThe gift table’s decorations: ¬†I put a copy of her sonogram in a frame. ¬†I spray painted a basket pink for cards and made a thank you sign for it. ¬†(Mom is using basket for books now.) ¬†The frame with her name, I made for her nursery. ¬†I then laid out a pink flower garland to finish the gift table.



Hungry board

I made this storyboard of Hungry Caterpillar of Ellie growing as her mom had done the veg/fruit size each 2 weeks. ¬†I also changed the last name of the author to our name as he shares same first name as son. ¬†I then added mom’s name as author too. ¬†Just thought it was a cute way to show Amanda’s last 8 months … this was my idea and not a pinterest item ūüôā


I did an activity table instead of playing games.

a20130818_13 - Copy




I also made labels for the books brought to the shower … I had one I threw away so overlook the bended label since I forgot to take a pix of them.

20130818_7All the desserts hadn’t arrived yet …we had 7 different ones. ¬†Taking home a container of desserts was one of the favors for the guests. ūüôā


One sister in law brought these adorable cookies!!  They were delicious!


A few diaper cakes with books to go with theme.  Mom then can use books and diapers after shower.

d cakeI made this one to hold one of the favors … bookmarkers for guests to take home. ¬† The book topper has Ellie’s name. ¬†ūüôā



Another favor was gummy worms (Albenese of course!) with note saying “Thank you for making Ellie a bookworm.”

gummy worms

Lil details I added that I took a pix since I didn’t take many:

s and p

Yeah I even added stickers to the salt and pepper, lol.


Ice Bucket


I made a few these for silverware.


The cake was a disaster!¬† First of all it was supposed to be yellow icing to match the invite.¬† Then look at the writing. ūüôĀ

But it was worse thing that happened that day and we were okay. ūüôā


The books “Where is Ellie” and “Ellie’s Tea Party” have Ellie as an Elephant.¬† So went with the Pink Safari theme at Party City for decorations and paper goods.

part of tableAdded a pink box to use as a riser for the (horrible) cake.  I also decorated the trifle bowl that had the Cotton Candy Salad in it.

a20130818_25 - Copy

Beautiful blanket that Eric’s aunt Linda made for Ellie ….


The florist did a great job on her corsage … it was beautiful!


The beautiful DIL and beautiful DSD … so blessed to have them both in my life and can’t wait until Ellie joins them!

Thanks for all your help Liz on setting up!!!!!!!!

Thanks to all my friends and family that put up with my endless texts of pix for the shower too!!  I so appreciate the time!!!!!

Now how many days is it until Ellie arrives? ūüôā

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Happy Birthday to ME & my Papaw :)

Happy Birthday to ME & my Papaw :)

papaw an dme


I was the luckiest grandchild in my Smith family … I got to be born on our papaw Curtis Smith’s birthday! ¬†He’s been gone to Heaven since 1989 but still miss him every day! ¬†Growing up we always shared a birthday cake so to this day I have cake for him too. ¬† My grandparent’s didn’t have much money but they truly showed us more love and attention than we could have hoped for in life. ¬†I was truly blessed with loving grandparents on both sides!

The reason there hasn’t been any posts in a few days is because we had another death in our family. ¬†While home in KY, my uncle Dwain passed away. ¬†That is two brothers my dad has lost in less than five months. ¬† I know my grandma had a wonderful Mother’s Day with three of her boys now. ¬† ¬†But please keep my dad & his siblings and my cousins in your thoughts as they grieve for their brother, dad, and papaw.

I’ll be back to blogging tomorrow. ¬†Today I will be enjoying my special day and thinking of my papaw! ūüôā

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Happy Mothers Day!

Happy Mothers Day!

mom and me2

I hope everyone has a wonderful Mothers Day!!

I am so grateful for the mother God blessed me with in life!! ¬†Our road was bumpy during my teenage & college years. ¬†As I grew up, I learned to see life through my momma’s journey. ¬†That made such a huge difference on our relationship. ¬†I think that is one of the best gifts we can give our parents. ¬†Seeing life through their eyes with its ups and downs, accepting that they did the best they could, and forgiving them for any mistakes they did make. ¬†Then hoping our kids will give us the same courtesy when they get older. ¬†I am truly proud to be known as my momma’s daughter … she is a true woman of God and such a blessing to me!! ¬†I wouldn’t have my brother if it wasn’t for her too. ¬†ūüôā

I also want to acknowledge I wouldn’t get to have the wonderful stepdaughter and stepson that I have if it wasn’t for their mom. ¬†Thank you Nancy for two wonderful kids that you allow me to share with you!! ¬†I am grateful everyday for them! ¬†Next Mother’s Day we’ll be grandma’s … ūüôā

I am so grateful to my husband’s mom too. ¬†I wouldn’t have the love of my life if it wasn’t for her!! ¬†She did a wonderful job with all eight of her kids. ¬†She is such a wonderful grandma and mother in law too. ¬†So blessed to call her mom too.

For those of you that your heart and arms ache for a child, my heart is with you.  I hope you feel comfort this weekend.

For those of you missing your mom or child in Heaven I send the very biggest hugs.


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Baking Bacon and Chocolate Covered Bacon in Bacon Bouquet

Baking Bacon and Chocolate Covered Bacon in Bacon Bouquet

bacon boq

Baking Bacon … Chocolate Covered Bacon … and a Bacon Bouquet

That’s a lot of bacon for one blog post!! ūüôā

I wasn’t going to share the bacon bouquet we made but was told I should. ¬†I made it for our son for his birthday with no thought to my blog/journey. ¬†It tickled me though when he asked was it a Pinterest pin. ¬†It was something his dad and I came up with at the store.

The son loves bacon! ¬†So his dad and I were at Sam’s and saw a 3 lb package of bacon. ¬† We decided to give him some bacon. ¬†Then it blossomed from adding some chocolate covered bacon into a bacon bouquet of fruits and his favorite candy bars too. ¬† If you have never have tried chocolate covered bacon, you don’t know what you are missing! ¬†(I had tried it at a fair last summer.)

The one thing that was a pin was baking the bacon.  However I had already baked the bacon a few weeks ago but forgot to take pictures.  So we took a few pictures of the bacon for the pin.  Of course we had to take a pix of the bacon bouquet, who would make one and not photograph it?

 Baking Bacon is much easier and less messy!!!  

Thanks to the pin for the bacon tip!


(my bacon is on skewers for the chocolate covered bacon, not needed just for baking bacon!)

First of all don’t preheat oven! ¬†You want to place it in a cold oven when you begin to cook it. ¬† Line baking sheets with foil. ¬†(make sure the foil/pan has a lip so it doesn’t drip out of the pan onto the oven!) ¬†

Add bacon strips, giving a little room to each piece.  Put bacon into oven and then turn on oven at 400 degrees. Bake for about 18-20 minutes, turning after 10 minutes. (watch them very carefully!)  Take out of oven and lay slices onto a paper towel lined plates to cool.

on pan


on skewer

Chocolate Covered Bacon …. It is so easy and tasty! ¬†

I suggest putting them on bamboo skewers like we did. ¬†We didn’t presoak skewers but would the next time because it was a little charred. ¬†(soak skewers for 30 minutes before using like you would for the grill) ¬†You will want to go through the meat and not fat when sliding onto skewer.


Putting the chocolate on the cooled bacon was so simple.  Follow directions on the chocolate for melting.  Then take a pastry brush and PAINT the chocolate on the cooked bacon.  Let dry.  Enjoy!

I normally use Bakers Square melting chocolate cups but felt the Dolci was better for doing the bacon with its harder shell.

Our Bacon Bouquet … Hubby had gotten an EA (not a satisfied customer at the moment to give credit) and had kept the sticks and basket. ¬† So we did strawberries and pineapples in chocolate too. ¬†We added some of his favorite candy bars that I taped onto a stick. ¬†¬†I put lollipops at the bottom to fill in the holes. ¬†I then used lettuce for middle holes. ¬†I added birthday stickers to sides of basket. ¬†I added happy birthday and #28 stickers to the EA stick. ¬†We filled both sides with the fruit, regular bacon, and chocolate covered bacon. ¬†Hope he & our daughter in law enjoyed it and the rest of that 3 lbs of cooked bacon.

bacon boq


For the daughter’s birthday ….

The daughter got her own batch of Caramel Crispix and she was a happy camper on her birthday treat. ¬†This has been made at least ten times now since December for parties, gifts, and just for us. ¬†NOT ONE PERSON has said they didn’t LOVE it! ¬†Try it if you haven’t … it is so good esp with vanilla ice cream! (thanks to the daughter for sharing that tip!)


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Weekend in Lexington, KY doing pins :)

Weekend in Lexington, KY doing pins :)

us self portait

This weekend we traveled to Lexington, KY. I am from Harlan county in southeastern KY.  So Lexington in central KY is all new to me. I was able to accomplish sixteen pins. (Places & things pinned by others on Pinterest.)   I also got to scratch off two items on my bucket list!
My hubby bought us two tickets to a UK game along with two nights in Lexington for one of my Christmas gifts. The UK game had been on my list for years! The other was seeing the Mary Todd Lincoln home for our Abe journeys. The ticket stub has been placed in the Blessings Jar too!

My sixteen pins I accomplished:

1. & 2. UK game @ Rupp Arena

us in front of uk

3. Lexington, KY


4. Mary Todd Lincoln home  (will visit again when museum is open)

The Mary Todd Lincoln house has the distinction of being the first historic site restored in honor of a First Lady!  She moved here with her family when she was fourteen.  Her and Abraham Lincoln along with their three boys visited here too.

Mary Todd Lincoln house

5. Finally tried a KY tradition of a Hot Brown sandwich

From Wikipedia:  The Hot Brown is an open-faced sandwich of turkey and bacon, covered in Mornay sauce and baked or broiled until the bread is crisp and the sauce begins to brown.  A Hot Brown Sandwich is a hot sandwich originally created at the Brown Hotel in Louisville, KY, by Fred K. Schmidt in 1926. It is a variation of traditional Welsh Rarebit and was one of two signature sandwiches created by chefs at the Brown Hotel shortly after its founding in 1923.

The variation I had was Turkey and ham on a potato cake with gouda cheese and bacon on top.  It was tasty!

hot brown

6. Tried Kentucky Burgoo soup

From Wikipedia: Burgoo is a spicy stew, similar to Irish¬†or Mulligan Stew, often served with corn bread or corn muffins. ¬†¬†A typical burgoo is a combination of at least three ingredients: a combination of beef, pork, chicken, and mutton, often hickory-smoked, but other meats are seen occasionally; Vegetables,¬†such as lima beans,¬†corn, okra, and potatoes; and a thickening agent, such as cornmeal, ground beans, whole wheat, or potato. Traditionally, soup bones¬†were added for taste and thickening. ¬†Mine didn’t have mutton, I don’t think, lol. ¬†I am going to find a recipe online to try it at home. ¬†So stay tuned!¬†

7. Stayed at the Hyatt Saturday and also ate dinner at the Blue Fire Bar & Grill inside

8. Bought the grandbaby its first UK item (UK sock monkey)

UK sock monkey

9. Went to a place that Guy Feri had visited on Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives (JJ’s Mcbrewesters Smokery). ¬†The chicken and pulled pork were really good!

10. Kentucky sign

KY sign

11. Had lunch at Sawyers where a local recommended … A Lot of the UK ushers were eating there too.


12. Visited a friend in Nicholasville, KY.  This is a beautiful area outside of Lexington.

Billie and me

13. Ohio sign

ohio sign

14. Indiana sign

indiana sign

15. Stayed at the Campbell House Friday night … mixed reviews on it.


16. Seen the UK cheerleaders


I have been to twenty-four states and two countries and Kentucky is still the most beautiful place on earth to me! Each part of the state has a unique beauty so be sure to check it out! Friendly people, great shopping, the Mary Todd Lincoln home museum, and an amazing basketball team make Lexington worth visiting again for us! (along with friends and niece in Nicholasville to visit too) I also want to see the Horse Park and Keeneland my next visit. Go Blue!

A special thanks to my hubby for the gift of a lifetime to scratch the UK game off my bucket list!!

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