Wednesday, August 31, 2011

feeling lighter


My hair was a little too long and flat.  I been feeling like a hippie.

I had these styles on my Pinterest fashion board…

pinterest hair

My goals were shorter bangs, more layer, and maybe a wavy style that I could achieve at home?  And my hair lady did a great job!

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It is shorter, with more layer and I think the wavy look came out really well!  The photo was at the salon and it was still a little tight in the picture – it broke up a bit more (as she said it would) and ended up exactly like in the Pinterest pictures!  Sweet – I have a new style option.  That only happens once a decade for me.  It looks great when I just straighten it, too. 

To achieve the look, she blow dryed my hair, then wrapped chunks around a large curling iron, and added a lot of hair spray.  By the way, if you hate hair spray because it gets crunchy, you haven’t found the right one yet.  I used to hate it and now I have Aussie and it is nice and soft but still holds.  Anyway, I am glad I know how to do this look now.  But a large curling iron is now on my shopping list.  =) 

My hair lady (is there a better name for her?) Jaime, does a really great job, she is the owner at Salon on 4th in Marysville.  I highly recommend her. 

Aintcha glad I shared that bit of breaking news with you?  Peace!

Monday, August 29, 2011

redneck fun


Remember when I shared these jungle-garden pictures a while back?


The weeds had actually grown, multiplied and amassed even more since then – the whole blasted garden was thick and waist high with weeds.  Well, I am thrilled to report that our dear friends had a momentary lapse of judgment and decided to help us weed it this weekend!  All 9 of us (even Suzie helped =) worked for the a good part of an hour through the heat and look at it now…


You can see the dirt!  I don’t have many actual vegetable plants to speak of (terrible weather after planting = lost enthusiasm), but the weeds are gone and the veggies I do have can now take full advantage of the sun and soil!  Yay!  Thanks friends!  By the way, do you see the biggest tallest plant in the center?  It is a tomato plant!  It is tall as me!  It is bigger than the pole beans!  I am hoping it is the roma variety for pico de gallo, baby!

After working in the sun we were all hot and ended up having some good ‘ole redneck fun.  First hubby got out the hose and handed it over to the kiddos.  The girls didn’t have swimsuits or even a change of clothes and their dresses couldn’t go in the dryer, but no worries, we’re redneck, we plow ahead anyway…

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I would like to point out the contrasting personalities of my two children:

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He screams because he doesn’t want to be sprayed.  She screams because she does!


Who would have thought showering in the yard could be so much fun?  I still can’t believe Susie loved being sprayed. 

Now, this is where the redneck comes in.  Hubby decided making a swimming pool out of the inflatable raft would be fun.  Of course the kids agreed…

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Bathing in the yard fully clothed in an inflatable raft?!  Pretty sure it doesn’t get much more redneck than that.


Oops, it just did.  How did that one slip in there???  ;)

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Mexican Cooking - Chicken a la Crema


Okay, so as promised yesterday, I am back with that recipe for Pollo (chicken) a la Crema.  Everyone has to ask what pollo is so I just cheat and call it Chicken a la Crema. 



1 lb. uncooked white rice

2 lb. chicken breast, chopped into small chunks

3 bell peppers (we used red), sliced

1 lb. mushrooms, sliced

1 onion, sliced

3 Tbsp. cooking oil

14 oz. can crushed tomatoes or tomato sauce

1/2 cup onion, diced

1 1/2 cups water

1 tsp. Lowry’s or Johnny’s seasoned salt

4 Tablespoons butter

2 lbs. sour cream

1 cup heavy whipping cream

package small tortillas


Soak the rice in hot water while chopping the vegetables and chicken. 

When ready to start cooking, put 2-3 tablespoons oil in a deep frying pan on M/H. Drain rice and add to skillet (careful, it will spatter), stirring occasionally until browned. Add the half can tomatoes, 1/2 cup of the diced onions and 1 1/2 cups water. Simmer covered for about 30 minutes or until rice is soft and water has evaporated. If water evaporates and rice is not yet done, add a little hot water and continue cooking until done.

Meanwhile, brown the chicken in 2 Tbsp. butter with 1 tsp. Lowry’s seasoned salt.

In a separate pan, sauté onions and peppers in 2 Tbsp. butter until onions turn translucent.  Add mushrooms and cook for a few more minutes.

Once chicken has browned, add 1 to 1.5 pounds of the sour cream and 1 cup heavy cream to the cooked chicken, and heat.  Then combine chicken and sauce with sautéed veggies and remove from heat, so sauce will thicken slightly.

Fry tortillias in a dry frying pan over medium-high heat, flipping after about 45 seconds, until heated.

Serve all items onto your plate and eat with a fork, or make little ‘tacos’ with the ingredients!  I do a little too much of both.  So delicious!


Now you have my very favorite Mexican Cooking recipe yet!  Oh, yeah, and it feeds like eleven people.  Really.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

a much needed vacation + a recipe


Last week was crazy at work for me, and Ty had been cooped up all week with a sprained ankle (I know, poor Ty, right?  Ha!), and we badly needed to get out of the house.  So we grabbed some friends and headed to the Teanaway.

The first day we started with a hike.  One of Ty’s famous hikes. 

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7/8 of the way up, the kiddos were done.  We took in the views and then Ty and Blanca and I climbed the rest of the way to the very top…


There are two equally breathtaking top peaks…


See in the second picture how the huge boulder appears to be balancing on it’s tip?  I was sitting on that boulder taking the first picture and yelling at them to get back from the edge, then they notified me that my boulder was even more dangerous than their boulder, so we traded places and took the second picture.  The walk from peak to peak is short but looks like this…


See that sweet little patch of grass?  Don’t go over there…


Yeah.  It is a sandy, slippery, straight-down cliff.  Gave me the heebies.

Anyway, this place is called “Hole in the Wall” because of this feature near the top…


Pretty strange.  Kinda like my sprained ankle Cliffhanger wannabe husband.  I have no idea how this rock came to be this way and also why there are no others like it that we have ever seen in the area. 


After that we needed some nourishment.  Pollo (chicken) a la crema.  Oh baby.  Recipe to come tomorrow…


My all time favorite Mexican food.  Easy and delicious!  Somewhat similar to my all time favorite Italian food – Fettuccini Alfredo.  Hmmm.  I am seeing a pattern here, and it is called heavy cream. 


On day two we set off on a little jaunt off a logging road and back into the woods. 


Destination: natural waterslides.


He is timid just like me… we watched together from the shallows…

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They look all sweet and misty because I used a slow shutter speed, but the water actually moves pretty quickly through the chutes… hence why I kept my feet in the shallows.  I sink. 

We played until we were all tuckered out and ready to get a snack and sit in traffic for hours.  This was only the beginning of the traffic…


I love that sweaty, fluffy little man.

Monday, August 15, 2011

work wardrobe


So one of the fun things about going back to work was getting to get ‘dressed’ every day.  Yes I am one of those stay at home moms who sometimes leaves her pajamas or yoga pants on all day and then gets dressed and flat-irons her hair right before the hubby gets home.  But now it’s fun getting up in the morning and going to the closet because I have somewhere to go!  One problem.  There is nothin’ good in that closet.  Solution?  I would like to introduce you to, Plato’s Closet.

Have you ever been there?  For me, I don’t like paying full price but the idea of looking through the chaos of thrift store clothing paralyzes me.  I finally tried and found that anything I found was usually 60% to 80% of retail (even Target brands) and was usually worn, pilly or mis-shapen.  Some people have the time/patience and do an awesome job at it, but for me it was not worth the frustration.  But Plato's has become my compromise.  They sell used clothing but they only accept on-trend items!  You don’t have to dig through all the outdated stuff!  And their prices are great.  I have become a regular now and I really, really like it.

Hubby did a side job and let me spend it on clothes for work!  And he told me to come back with some Sevens!  Woo-hoo!  Here are my finds from my last trip:


Left to right: Seven Jeans (retail at $150), William Rast Jeans, and three tops by Eyeshadow, WetSeal, and LoveRocks.  Hot denim with some “dark” left in them runs $50, more worn jeans are $40, and less hot denim brands range from $15 to $30.  It always amuses me to see what brands I go for.  I end up with some Hollister, lots of WetSeal and twenty-one, and often Mossimo.  But this one surprised me…


On the left, Mossimo.  On the right, JUICY COUTURE!!!  Yes, I am now the proud owner of a piece of Juicy clothing.  I had no idea they made ‘normal’ stuff.  I love that shirt – it fits nice on top, and it is slouchy but comes in at the waistband and still looks feminine.  Work is casual, so this will be nice for lazy days. 

So give Plato’s a try if you like on-trend and good service but can’t cram Nordstrom into your budget as much as you want to.  Oh yeah, the managers and girls at Plato’s help you too.  They will take your armloads of items and get a room started for you and give you fashion advice (phew!) and hunt down items for you.  I have a couple favorites, but they are all very helpful.


Lastly, I have one little random to share with you.  Do you ever run out of the hangers with the little groove in them that catches strappy tank tops and wide neck shirts?  I run out all the time, or sometimes it mis-shapes the shirt and makes me crabby.  I have found a solution…


I wrap a rubber band around the end of the hanger a couple times and it grips the shirt perfectly, so that it stays wherever I put it.  It actually works better for the wide neck tops than the hangers with the grooves do!  Easy.


Peace!  I will try to keep the posts coming but it is a busy week at work; I should be tackling my first Senior session solo at the end of the week!  Pray for me!  =)

Thursday, August 11, 2011

crafting again


I am telling you, my list of goals for the week is doing it for me.  I am getting caught up and many of the things making the list are actually fun things now!  I had six thrifted containers waiting to be made into pin cushions for my sale, and I got ‘er done…


This one is my new favorite…


That little dish is so cute!  It is stamped “Copyright 1989”.  There may have been many more.  They may be haunting me.  I may have to go back.

And I also got my curtains made from that vintage sheet I thrifted this week!  I was so excited about them I got them done before they even got on the goals list!…


You only get a preview because they are literally hanging on a string right now.  I haven’t gotten a curtain rod yet, but I had to see them up!