Thursday, April 30, 2009

Tomatoes, Basil and Petunias - OH MY!

So, as Shooter and I are busy gardening on Sunday afternoon, we decided we'd go ahead and plant our vegetable plants also. We had done some container gardening for a couple of summers and then taken last year off - I missed the juicy sweet tomatoes from a couple of years ago so we bought some more to plant this year.

Shooter got some (hopefully) delicious, red cherry tomato plants and here are two of them.

We also have a yellow pear tomato plant. We had one of these a couple of years ago and they're absolutely delicious!!!!!!

Here are the other two cherry tomato plants.

And what are tomatoes without some basil!!?!?!?!? This year I decided to split the container into two pots, two plants each. Previously I'd planted all four into one pot and I thought splitting them might help them flourish morel

We also bought some Petunias to add some color to the back patio. Some are above and some are in boxes along our patio railing.

The petunias are a gorgeous purple color and I can't wait for them to really get blooming!


Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The garden project - front flower bed

As I said earlier this week, Shooter and I worked in our yard for a few hours on Sunday afternoon. Here are some pictures of all that's going on in my perennial flower bed.

Here is one of three hosta plants. When my Mom gave me this plant it was a clump barely bigger than my fist...that was three years ago.

Here are the other two hostas...both were very small when I first got them as divided plants from my Mom. Unbelievable!!!

Here are my daylillies that I planted last year. They're enormous!!!! They are going to have to be split next year for sure!

This is a perennial that I planted last year and honestly I can't remember what it is. I think it might be a Salvia but I'm not sure.

The clump in front of the bench are black eyed susans. They started out as a really small clump the size of my fist. They're spreading like wildfire and I LOVE IT!!!!!

In the foreground are some evening primroses that came from my Mom too. They're spreading like crazy and will make for some beautiful flowers in a few months. Behind them are some of the flower grass and the Salvia that I bought at Lowe's.

I'll keep posting pictures so that you can see the development of the blooms as the summer goes on.


Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Da Kitchen!

Well, we've finally moved most of the stuff back into the kitchen and organized most of it.

I say most because it's not completely there but it's definitely a far cry from where it was!

The cabinet straight ahead was a natural wood color - we put it together from Ikea. It definitely looks better painted white like our cabinetry.

Here are the cabinets that Shooter freshly painted and replaced the pulls on. The pictures don't do them justice...they look AWESOME!!!!!

Here's a glimpse at the breakfast area...picture is dark so forgive me for that. I found that tablecloth in the linen closet when I was cleaning it out last week, not sure that I like it in there...I'm searching for something with more white in it but uses the same blues, yellows, and greens. I also need to get some valances for the windows.

We're loving the redo and absolutely cannot imagine living with the ugly wallpaper anymore! I am so glad we did all the work and have our new and clean kitchen!


Monday, April 27, 2009

Whew! Those are miracle pills!

Ha....gotcha with that title didn't I!

Well, last week was a rough week for me...I had my 1 hour gestational diabetes test scheduled and unfortunately I didn't pass. I have to go back on Thursday for the three hour test. I was really bummed but I have finally decided that it is what it is. If I don't pass the three hour for some reason, then Shooter and I will modify our eating habits and I'll do everything I can to keep my sugars down. Also, I found out that my iron was low...pretty darn low...and I'm now on iron pills. That's actually not bad news because since I've been on them my energy levels have really improved!

The weather this past weekend was unbelievable here in Atlanta so Shooter and I went to the nearby Lowe's and bought up a bunch of plants. I wanted to plant four or five new perennials in my front flower bed and I found some really nice ones to put out....a salvia, some kind of flowering grass, a fuschia, and another day lilly. It's really looking nice out there - my plan of loading up on gorgeous perennials that I can split and multiply is really working out! My hosta are monstrous this year (and will have to be split next year)! My black eyed susans are coming up in a huge bunch and so are my evening primroses. Those are all going to have to be split up next year which will really begin to fill out that bed. Also, my daylillies from last year are enormous! I can't wait to see how they bloom this year. We also bought some vegetable plants too. I decided I wanted to do tomatoes and basil again this year. We got one yellow pear tomato plant and four red grape tomato plants and four basil plants. We're going to have tomatoes coming out of our ears by the time Parker is born! But I'll also be making some darn good tomato basil salads. :-)

We planted all afternoon on Sunday and I actually got some good sun on my vampire pale arms. :-) I made sure that I didn't do too much and stayed hydrated...not even one braxton hicks to indicate I had overdone...I figured that was pretty awesome. Shooter also cleaned off our patio and it looks amazing! He's one of the most awesome peeps I know. Honestly.

I'm going to take some pictures this evening to post tomorrow. By the time I got my shower, I collapsed and then the sun had set. :-(

I'm proud of the progress we made outside in the flower beds and patio this weekend. It'll really be nice once the baby is born and the visitors come...they'll have a welcoming flower reception. :-) And we'll send them home with a bunch of tomatoes. ha!

What did you do this weekend?

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Okay....double standard time....

I rarely allow myself to get caught up in the scandals that rock the beauty pagent world. Those poor girls have enough problems....

HOWEVER, everyone and their uncle in California seems to have jumped on the "Let's hate on Miss California Carrie Prejean" bandwagon and I personally think it's pretty unfair.

Fox News ran this article talking about all the celebrities who've taken to Twitter to voice their displeasure with Ms. Prejean. There's a lot of name calling and use of the word ignorant. It's all very callous and hateful. Even event judge Perez Hilton claims to have given Ms. Prejean a 0 for her answer to his question. Bitter much? Just because an answer isn't to your liking, you call the poor girl a b***h on your blog?

This girl has very strong convictions surrounding her faith and truly doesn't believe in gay marriage. Why is that any different than someone saying they really don't like the fact that the Obamas had a dog purchased for them rather than adopting one from a shelter? Both are politically charged. Both have people who are strong supporters on both sides of the fence. Why is this girl being persecuted so strongly?

I unfortunately find it terribly disconcerting that one cannot voice their opinion without fear of being publically mocked, name called and belittled. Ms. Prejean is not ignorant nor is she speaking for a small percentage of this population. I think it's time that Ms. Prejean is defended.

And no...I do not support gay marriage. I fully believe that marriage was created by God to be between a man and a woman. Period. I do have gay friends. I do believe that they should be able to have certain rights as far as the eligibility for health care from their partner's and so forth. But no, I do not agree that they should have the right to marry.

I hope Miss California continues to weather this storm with the integrity that she has so far. She is not apologetic and stands by her beliefs. For that I commend her.


Wednesday, April 22, 2009

It's Wednesday and all is well.....

Whew...where is the time flying to?!??!?!

I know...I need to get pictures of the new kitchen up and I promise I'll do that this week! Shooter proclaimed that it was officially finished this week...and it is...for the most part. ha! We have some touching up to do on the paint and whatnot....and I need to shop for the decorative lady touches to the room...but the hard stuff is complete. And it looks awesome!

Baby Parker has been kicking up a storm here recently. Yesterday he was doing the rolling flips in my belly and I called Shooter over to feel the body part he was sticking out at us. Shooter was pretty freaked out but thought it was cool at the same time. Parker's regularly now sticking something out...either a butt or an elbow or a knee or something. Definitely hard to distinguish but it's definitely him.

I went in for my glucose tolerance test today - I'll know the results on Friday - hopefully it'll come back with good results. I definitely don't want to have to do the three hour ordeal. Ugh! My blood pressure is still great...which is a relief...and my weight gain is still awesome. So far I've only gained 10 pounds and only gained 1 pound over the last 4 weeks. I'm really proud of myself - and I need that confidence as I head into the part of my pregnancy where I'll start gaining more because of the baby growing but also because of water retention. Hopefully I won't swell too badly...I'm not swelling at all so far so hopefully that's a good sign. The PA that I saw today wasn't worried about my lack of weight gain because I'm measure about a 1/2 week ahead...measuring 29 weeks whereas I'm 28 weeks and 2 days today.

I'm really starting to get we talked about when I have to stop traveling more than an hour away from the hospital...and that begins after Memorial Day weekend! Luckily that's the weekend we have my family shower planned in East Tennessee so I can then stay around the house nesting and getting all that stuff tucked away for our little man.

Can I tell you that looking at the calendar has me really anxious. I realize that my next appointment will be at 30 weeks!!!!!! My next ultrasound will be at 32 weeks!!!!!!! After that I'll only have 8 weeks until Parker's due to arrive. I don't think I can even explain to you just how fast this pregnancy has gone for me. Time has flown and I'm afraid that it'll fly by once he's here too. I wanna hang on to the new baby smell and little baby feet for as long as I can!


I'm just going to take it a day at a time and enjoying everything. Shouldn't that be how you always live?

Later lovelies!

Friday, April 17, 2009

You can make a video too!

I visited OhMommy's blog today and discovered a wonderful tool for creating online videos. It took no time to make this one and it downloaded pictures I already had on my facebook page. Quite nifty!!! OhMommy has a link to get a free trial for her readers...go visit her at Classy Chaos.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Where in the world did that come from?!?!?!

27 week pregnant belly

Okay...the other day I looked down and couldn't believe my eyes. Sometime in the last few days my belly popped, AGAIN! Parker's growing like crazy and moving all over the place and my belly is sticking out farther and farther. I decided today that I'd wear one of my tighter camis under a sweater and show it off. I'm to the point where I'm like, why not....I'm sticking out there...might as well show it. ;-) I said that to my Mom and she's all like, well, Laura, you're 7 months should be showing! :-)

Things are going well....we're getting the house back in order slowly but surely....Shooter is working on the kitchen cabinets as I type up this post. It's all going to look so great.

Also, I realized on Monday that it was three months exactly until my due date. That was a bit sobering. :-)

I have also decided that I adore being pregnant....except for the indigestion, heartburn and gas. I'm a friggin' gas factory....if I'm not burping, it's coming out the back end. It's nearly unbearable. I do feel sorry for Shooter too. It seems like that it's either been me or Morey with the toxic gas over the last three weeks. I think he secretly sleeps with a gas mask. :-)

I hope all has been well with you!


Friday, April 10, 2009

All I can ask for is that you pray...

I don't know if you've seen or heard this story about the tornadoes in Arkansas that hit last night...but it's a terrible disaster. It has touched our family in a distant but real way...My cousin lived in this town for a while and her husband is from Mena. His family and a lot of friends live there and we're still waiting word of their safety.

Please pray....

Update: They are all cousin's husband's brother's house was hit and destroyed but they're all safe and sound. We've been holed up all evening with tornadoes of our own to deal with...crazy weather!!!! I hope you're safe and sound wherever you may be.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Recipe Time! Buttermilk Baked Chicken

Well, now that the kitchen has started to make it's way back to a normal state, I can get back to cooking.

I didn't realize how much I enjoyed cooking until I had a kitchen that was out of commission and we were forced to go out or get takeout. I feel so much better when I can decompress over the simple tasks of creating a meal.

Last night, I adapted a recipe from Southern Living All-Time Favorite Recipes, Volume I.

Buttermilk Baked Chicken
(adapted from Southern Living All-Time Favorite Recipes, Volume I)

4 skinless, bone in chicken breasts
1 quart buttermilk, divided
5 dashes of hot sauce
2 cans cream of mushroom soup
1 small can of sliced mushrooms
1 cup flour
1 tsp salt, divided
1 tsp pepper, divided
1 tsp garlic powder, divided

Measure 1 1/2 cups of buttermilk and place it to the side. Place the chicken breasts in a ziploc bag and then cover with the rest of the buttermilk and 5 dashes of hot sauce. Allow chicken to marinate in the buttermilk/hot sauce for 6-8 hours.

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 425 degrees. Combine flour, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper and 1/2 tsp garlic powder and stir well. Dredge each well drained chicken breast through the flour and then place breast side down in a greased baking dish.

Bake chicken breasts for 25 minutes. Turn chicken over and bake for 15 minutes more. Combine the 1 1/2 cups of buttermilk, the cream of mushroom soup, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper and 1/2 tsp garlic powder and stir well to combine. Pour over chicken and then back for 15 minutes more, or until chicken is no longer pink. Cover with aluminum foil if needed to prevent over browning.

Shooter and I had this with some leftover jasmine rice and he had salad and I had sugar snap peas. This was delicous and incredibly easy! I definitely recommend that you try this out!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Honey, could you measure this for me?

So, Sunday morning Shooter and I decide to take a break and play hookey from church. We had so much to do we just thought it better to stay home and get it done. Well, Shooter had to go to Lowe's and buy more rollers to paint with so he went off while I puttered around the house.

I get a phone call - it's Shooter calling me from Lowe's, and he needs verification on the height of our baseboard molding. Well, I go and hunt down the measuring tape and then try measuring it. I grunt and I huff and I try to read how tall it is....I can't figure it out. The tape measure sticks out about an inch and a half from the wall and I can't read the darn thing!

Shooter keeps asking me to try so I finally yell at him and say, "Fine, I'll lay down here on the floor and try to read this thing. You'll probably find me still laying here like a big old whale when you get home cause I couldn't get back up." After he laughs at me, he said that he'd just buy the 3.25" molding and that should be fine.

I should have just kept laying on the floor......

But it was cold.......

And I was hungry........

Men! Sheesh! I don't think he's figured out yet that my range of motion is highly limited right now. I have to sit on the bed to get my pants on....and that still takes some work. Tying shoes is another activity I have taken for granted all my life. I need to go find me some slip on sneakers for this summer.


Monday, April 6, 2009

Where in the World is Laura, Laura, Laura???

Wow...I've been away for a while, I know it. I have been suffering from the downers and just didn't have all that much to talk about.

I can say that we're on the downhill slide when it comes to the kitchen re-do. We got the last coats of paint on the walls this weekend and finally finished painting our Ikea cabinet. I should be able to reassemble everything over the next two nights and get some "it's almost finished" pictures up. I, of course, will be shopping for some curtains and a tablecloth and an accent table skirt to finish things up in a stylish way. Not sure what I'm going to do just yet in that arena so I'm keeping my options open.

Once we get the kitchen back together, I can get the sunroom back together and reorganized as Shooter's "man-cave/office". Right now it's still a storehouse.

Once the sunroom is back together we'll be able to move things out of the guest room and get it back into some semblance of order!

Also, I'm looking forward to getting some finishing touches going on the nursery. I was looking for some corner shelving but I can't really find any I like in the color I want. I think what we'll end up doing is something else equally as cool and I can't wait to get that project over.

I'm one of those peeps who has a hard time when things are completely is disorder. Rather than tackle it, I run from it and pretend it doesn't exist.....until one day, "BLAMMO!" I explode and have to clean it all up right then. That kinda happened this weekend in the kitchen. I'd had all I could take of not being able to use my sink or my stove and having my countertops dirty and full of painting tools. Shooter has been a good sport and told me that I had really exceeded his expectations by tolerating it as well as I did for so long. I think we're on a good trajectory to have the house back in shape by the end of this coming weekend. Thank goodness!!!!!!!

We do still have some work to do in the kitchen though. We're going to slowly work on the cabinets in the and get them painted which will make a world of difference. We're also replacing all the pulls which will be amazing!

Anyway....that's the low down on the kitchen re-do. Good times aplenty! ;-)