Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Patty Melts

Boy have we been eating good this summer...  No wait,  we've been doing some good eatin this summer!   Fresh summer veggies,  melons, grilled sausage and fish..   Everything has been delicious this season.

I "found" this easy patty melt recipe one day last week while watching pioneer woman and we've had them twice already.   : )  
The name Patty melt sounds kind of gross, I prefer to call it a grilled cheeseburger..   and since I switched out the rye for white bread and the swiss for cheddar... isn't that what it is?   

One thing is for sure...   they are simple and delicious!!!


1 stick butter
1 whole large onion, halved and sliced
1 1/2 pounds ground beef
5 dashes Worcestershire sauce
8 slices rye bread
8 slices Swiss cheese


In a medium skillet, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter over medium-low heat. Throw in the sliced onions and cook slowly until the onions are golden brown and soft, 20 to 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.

In a medium bowl, mix together the ground beef, Worcestershire and some salt and pepper. Form into 4 patties.

Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a separate skillet over medium heat. Cook the patties on both sides until totally done in the middle.

Assemble the patty melts this way: Slice of bread, slice of cheese, hamburger patty, a quarter of the cooked onions, another slice of cheese and another slice of bread.

On a clean griddle or in a large skillet over medium heat, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter and grill the sandwiches until golden brown. Remove the sandwiches and add the remaining 2 tablespoons butter to the skillet. Return the sandwiches to the skillet, flipping them to the other side. Cook until golden brown and crisp, and until the cheese is melted. Slice in half and serve immediately!

Hope that you all enjoy
Have a great day!!!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

a tiny bit of catching up!

Good morning dear friends
Happy Wednesday!

My internet has been wacky not working and we are still waiting for it to be repaired.
Life without internet..  rough!  : )
Having withdraws, Sally and I are sitting in a very busy fast food restaurant using their wifi.

I missed you all on 4th of July!
I hope that everyone had a fun and safe holiday.
We spent the weekend on the water..  whether it was in the pool with the dogs, on a pier with some good friends or on our floats in the bay..  we are having a great time being outside!

The boys are happy  to be in the pool!!

We've been having a great summer!!

I have news for you..   as of yesterday I went back to work.
I was offered a full time management position at a another craft store ( Michael's local competition) ,  Some of you may remember, I worked at this store for a few years before I went to michaels.
Anyway..as I am still trying to enjoy my family and summer,   I declined the full time position and took a little part time role instead.    I'm happy to be back to work for a few hours a week.
And I am happy to be surrounded by crafts again.  : )

I am sorry to be so short..  my computer is about to die.
See you all very soon!!!!

Saturday, June 28, 2014


Have I mentioned that our youngest daughter is a mermaid..
Just look at that beautiful aqua hair.

.. and once mermaid Sally touches water
it's hard to get her out.

Paul and I took the mermaid and her sidekick, the amazing aqua-dog, to the beach yesterday.
Grey skies and steady winds made it not the prettiest of mornings..  
but we were still happy to be outside in the fresh air.

Of course, Paul didn't care..  he was in the water while us girls were content sitting up on the boat munching on yummy nutritious crab chips and doughnuts.  

 Within an hour or so,  the clouds began to break up, the seagulls were getting noisy and the sun was gleaming brightly over the water.

 We got the inflatable Kayak out.. ( had to burn off those doughnuts ) and cruised around the islandLook at Darla in the "backseat"..    she is the coolest little animal!!

 There's Paul, in his tube as usual.
He cracks me up with that tube..  He won't get out!!!

All of that hard work and sunshine pooped Darla out!!

Do you ever just sit back and think about your life..
We aren't rich,  we live small. we struggle sometimes.
We still live in the city.. in an old house that still needs work.
We don't take extravagant vacations or buy extravagant items.
Paul drives his dad's almost 20 year old truck and we have an old boat.
We  need for things..  but we don't require much

I look around and smile.. 
  What an incredible beautiful life that we've been blessed with.

To have the time to do nothing else but sit on this sandy beach, 
breath in the fresh air and be with the ones we love ~
The riches we have almost overwhelm me.

The beautiful day turned into a even more beautiful evening that none of us were ready to say Goodnight to.  Another perfect day for the record books.  : )

Have a great weekend friends.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

The Wedding Dress

I recently found this old dirty box while cleaning out the third floor.

I was nervous as I pulled it out from under the bed and sat on the floor and prepared to open the lid.
I hadn't seen the contents of this box in a very long time.
Tears fell from my eyes as I pulled the lid back.
There it was..  My beautiful 24 year old wedding dress .

A million emotions and thoughts went through my head.
Since the preservation tape had dry-rotted away
I chose to open the box completely.

As I slowly pulled the dress from the box I thought back to the day when I first saw it.  A day spent laughing and happy with my mom. She was so happy for Paul and I that she would have sold her soul to buy me any dress that I wanted.

I am still much like I was back then at 18 ~
I am not picky or pretentious ..  I like what I like, 
 and out of all of the beautiful expensive dresses,
It was this $400.00 dress that I loved.

My thoughts drifted to my dads walking me down the ailse.  
Yes, I said dads ~ plural.
I was blessed with two fathers,  
 My real dad (with the grey beard) on the left and my step dad on the right.
Two very very different men,  with different sets of  problems..
They were far from perfect fathers, but they had one thing in common..
They both loved me
... and I loved both of them.

I ran my fingers over the delicate pearls and stitches and I thought about our marriage.  Just like the dress,  our marriage had bumps and rough patches
but the stitching stayed strong, timeless and beautiful.

I cried as I thought about the man who took my hand and promised me forever.  He has been by my side through the births of our daughters, deaths of my parents, through the good and the bad,  sickness and in health....
24 years...  and he still can't wait to come home to see me.
He still gets mad when I don't find 10 minutes to just snuggle next to him.
24 years.. and he still picks me flowers and nurtures my soul.
I've been so lucky to have this extraordinary man by my side for more then half of my life.

I brought the dress downstairs to show my daughters.
I could see Paul smiling as I excitedly showed them the fine details and told them all about the moment I wore it.   I knew that he too, had that feeling of nostalgia and was thinking about how lucky we are.

They all wanted me to put it on.  
I didn't have the nerve to do it just then.
Even though I've lost 35 pounds..
 I still wasn't sure that this 42 year old body would fit into that 18 year olds dress.   Plus I knew that I would probably get all weird and cry.

I waited until a day when nobody was home.
 I carefully pulled the dress up over my waist and slid my arms inside of the soft sleeves.  I climbed up on a chair to allow the dress to flow as I reached behind my back to slide the zipper up as far as I could reach.

I couldn't believe it..  I was standing in my living room,
 ( the same living room that I had gotten ready for our wedding all those years ago ), wearing my wedding dress.  It fit and it was still as beautiful as ever.

Although, somewhere along these past 24 years, 
 my boobies stopped standing up where they once were.

I sent this picture to Paul and I told him that I would marry him all over again.
And his reply was, " I can't wait!" 
 : )

I have since packed the dress up in hopes that one day one or both of my girls will make good use of it.
It's a lucky dress!

Thank you for coming along this nostalgic journey with me.
It was so much fun.

Have a wonderful day

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

pretty touches in the Living room

Happy Wednesday!!!

It's a big night ..  
and I am soooo excited.
It is kinda like Christmas in the summer!

Why, you ask?
Well, I have this crazy summer time addiction called Big Brother
and it starts tonight!!!

Oh, it's going to be a loooong day. : )

I'm gonna keep myself busy today by gutting the kitchen cabinets and doing that organizing that I've been putting off for so long.   We're supposed to have rain and storms here in Baltimore today..     So It's the perfect day to get some chores done.

The living and dining rooms have already been scrubbed, shampooed and refreshed.
Everything is pretty and best of all ~  Clean!

I added a few patriotic touches throughout the living room.
It feels so summery and festive.

I love this basket of jars,  When the sun shines through the window, they seem to glow.

I rearranged the furniture and picked some flowers from my gardens to place on the pallet table.
This table is still one of my favorite things!   I just love how it turned out.

Under the table on an old wooden footstool is my collection of blog books and family yearbooks,  Seashells and some stacked linens.
Since the table is so tall, I feel the need to fill the space underneath of it.

This room is full of color.
In fact,  the whole house is random collection of colors.
It is a happy house.

See that sail boat..  isn't she a beauty!
A few weeks ago,  Paul and I visited many waterfront restaurants as we were trying to find cool places that we could take our boat. One place that we visited had the prettiest nautical decor and while we were having our beer and gazing at all of the fun things around us,  we spotted a sailboat much like this one.   Within minutes, Paul had his phone logged into ebay and had ordered us a sailboat of our own.   Every time I look at it, I am reminded of that fun date.

I'll take you in the dining room to show you more summer decor later this week.
For now..  I am off to clean the kitchen! 

Have a wonderful day!

Linking up with Share your cup Thursday
Stop over and check out all of the cool links.

Monday, June 23, 2014

A trip to the farmers market and some easy Strawberry Jam

It's been a lazy couple of days filled with fevers, sore noses and lots of coughing.
Since Michelle and I  were both finally feeling better from our nasty head/chest colds,
we happily escaped the house yesterday and spent the morning downtown browsing the booths at the farmers market.
The smell of smoked beef , fresh vegetables and steaming hot donuts filled the air
as we shopped and filled our bags with local goodies.

Of course i couldn't leave without a box of powdered goodness!

While we were there I found my dream job!
It's the first time I've seen it and I love this idea.
A woman had an RV set up as a vintage store.
It was the coolest thing! 

and yes,  I fell in love with everything that she had for sale!

It was a great morning.
We left with some hand made jewelry, beautiful flowers, tons of fresh fruits and veggies 
and a tummy ache from all of those greasy little donuts.
They were soooo worth it!

Now..  What to do with all of those delicious strawberries?

Easy Strawberry Jam

2 pounds fresh strawberries,
4 cups white sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice


1. In a wide bowl, crush strawberries in batches until you have 4 cups of mashed berry. In a heavy bottomed saucepan, mix together the strawberries, sugar, and lemon juice. Stir over low heat until the sugar is dissolved. Increase heat to high, and bring the mixture to a full rolling boil. Boil, stirring often, until the mixture reaches 220 degrees F (105 degrees C). Transfer to hot sterile jars, leaving 1/4 to 1/2 inch head space, and seal. Process in a water bath. If the jam is going to be eaten right away, don't bother with processing, and just refrigerate.

As for today,
The sun is bright and I have a 2 hour paddle-board session scheduled for this afternoon.
Hopefully I don't drown myself in a coughing fit.

Have a wonderful day!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Summer ReReads

I have a confession to make.
I am guilty of doing this thing that my husband makes fun of me for all of the time.
My oldest daughter does it too...  so I don't feel so bad.

Just like we can watch some of our favorite movies over and over again
We also reread our favorite books.

I have read Hawk O'Tooles Hostage atleast 10 times.
I read it every summer.

It's a perfect summer read!
Plus..  there's an arrogant sexy indian hero/villain that will keep you turning the pages.

Nora Roberts Chesapeake Bay seires is another one of my favorites that I am currently rereading.
Since they take place on the Chesapeake ~ they are the perfect boating books!

The next series on my summer reread list is the O'Malley Series.
I have only read the first few ~ many years ago
and they were awesome.
I can't wait to meet the O'Malley's that I missed the last time!!

What about you...
Are there any books that are so great that you have to reread them again?

Happy Summer reReading!