Thursday, June 29, 2023

Wednesday, June 28, 2023

Cooking Thursday

 Today I have 2 recipes to share with you.  I got them both from my friend Jenny.  She served them to us when we were there and shared the recipes with me.  One is for creamed corn in the crockpot.  I made it Sunday and it was perfect to turn on in the morning, and then find it all ready when we came home from church.  It was so good!
The other recipe is for carrots.  I haven't made them myself, (So no picture) but will be soon because they were so good!
So, here you go - 2 side dish recipes from Jenny.  Did I mention they are both delicious?

Crockpot Creamed Corn

8 ounces cream cheese, cut into pieces
1 cup whole mile
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup (4 tablespoons unsalted butter)
3 tablespoons white sugar
1 teaspoon salt
32 ounces frozen corn
black pepper, optional
Add all ingredients to crockpot in order listed.  Stir to combine.
Cook for 4 hours on low.  Cook full 4 hours for best results.

Easy Ranch Baby Carrots

16 ounce package baby carrots, patted dry
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons chopped parsley leaves
1 envelope ranch seasoning - or:
     1 teaspoon dried parsley
     1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
     1/2 teaspoon onion powder
     1/2 teaspoon salt
     1/2 teaspoon dried dill
     1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Lightly oil a baking sheet or spray with non stick spray.
Lay carrots in single layer on pan.  Combine ranch seasonings with olive oil. Place on carrots and toss to combine.
Place in oven and bake for about 20 minutes until carrots are tender.
Melt butter and drizzle over carrots, stir to combine.
May garnish with parsley if desired.

Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Monday, June 26, 2023

It's a beautiful morning!

 Last week on my day off, I was out of the house bright and early. I knew my day was going to be full, plus the place I wanted to go to would be great to see in the early morning.
So, at 6 am I was on the road. The sun was just rising and I had a 45 minute drive to make.

Country roads in the morning are beautiful.

I passed lots of barns and grain bins like these.

At 6:50 I got to my destination; the quiet little town of Fennville, MI.

This 4 acre field of flowers, mostly poppies was planted by the parents of Mateo Donaldson, who committed suicide after dealing with PTSD when he returned from Afghanistan.  The field of flowers was planted in 2016.  Analilia was a young lady from Fennville who died at the age of 19 after fighting cancer for several years.

The poppies were so pretty in the early morning light.  It was quiet and peaceful, not another person was around.

On my way home, I saw a sign for a park on a dead end road, so I stopped to investigate.  I found this beautiful river.

There were 2 bridges over the river.  One was for a train, and shortly after I arrived, one passed over.

This is the other bridge which stayed completely quiet.

Such a serene setting, and at 8 in the morning, no one else was around.

I did see several deer, who didn't really appreciate my presence in their area.

I was back home by 8:30.  What a great start to the day, admiring the beauty God has placed around us!

Sunday, June 25, 2023


 This weekend we had a long overdue celebration!  Several weeks ago Bob "retired".  He's no longer working as a manager at his store, but is still going in 2 days a week just to help on the floor.  We planned a family outing to celebrate, but several people were sick so we postponed.  Then we went on vacation, and Laura and family left when we came back. In the meantime it was Bob's birthday...  Last week was Father's Day and this time it was Bob who was sick.
So, this weekend, everyone was ok and we finally celebrated retirement, birthday and Father's Day!

Aaron smoked a pork roast, Heather made mac and cheese, I made a salad and an ice cream dessert.  We had a yummy supper! 
(Cassie has an old t-shirt of Andrew's on to keep her clean)  :)

After we ate the kids were playing and Cassie came out with this cap on.  It was my Dad's, she had it on backwards and it gave us all a smile.  My Dad would have loved to see her wearing it.

We started our bubble machine.  Here's Ruby having fun!

Alaina wanted me to take of picture of her jumping through the bubbles.

They all had fun with them!

Then it was time for Bob to open some presents.

Something we all gave him together was a ticket to ride in a B25  plane from WWII.  That'll happen in a few weeks and he is very excited!

Then we all went outside for a bit.

They all had fun!

I got the girls to sit for a few minutes so I could take a picture!

When I saw Cassie sitting by Heather, I snapped this pic.

I asked Laura and family to stand by the gate for a pic before they left.

It was a fun night and I know Bob enjoyed it too.

Thursday, June 22, 2023

Wednesday, June 21, 2023

Cooking Thursday

 I made this chicken dish in the crockpot recently and it turned out so good and full of flavor!  It was very easy to make, and is so versatile.  I used it as a main dish over rice, but you can serve it over tortilla chips, or put it into tortillas for a chicken taco.  You can even serve it over shredded lettuce for a salad.  

Crockpot Fiesta Chicken

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs
1 dry ranch seasoning envelope
1 tablespoon minced onion
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 can original Rotel with green chilies
1 can whole kernel corn, drained
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
juice from 2 limes, or about 4 tablespoons lime juice
1/2 cup chicken broth
8 ounce block cream cheese
2 tablespoons corn starch
2 tablespoons cold water.

Place chicken in crock pot. Sprinkle ranch seasoning, minced onion and black pepper over top. Pour Rotel, corn and black beans over all, then drizzle the lime juice on.  Pour chicken broth over all and place cream cheese on top.
Cook on low for about 5 hours. Remove chicken, shred and return to crock pot.
Stir together the corn starch and cold water.  Pour into ingredients in crock pot and cook on high for 1 hour to thicken sauce.
Serve over rice or in tortilla shells, garnish with cheese, sour cream or toppings of your choice. Or serve over shredded lettuce or tortilla chips!

Tuesday, June 20, 2023

Wordless Wednesday

 A visitor at work this week.  :)

Monday, June 19, 2023

City of Wyoming Open House

Our son-in-law Aaron works for a city near them, maintaining their fleet of vehicles.  It involves a wide variety of vehicles; snow plows, police cars, fire trucks and more.
The city had an open house a few weeks ago to let people come and see what they have and what the workers do.
We went with Aaron, Laura and the girls, and also Aaron's parents and it was very interesting.

They had fun things for the kids.  Here's Ruby playing Plinko.

And, Alaina hitting the bell on this giraffe.

Checking out the tall ladder

This is one huge piece of snow removal equipment!  We also saw equipment used in maintaining the water lines, things used to open man holes, a special truck that helps flush drain lines, a demonstration on what things like wipes, toys, cat litter does when flushed into the water system.

This is where they work on the equipment.

The girls got to sit in a fire truck

This is a really unique piece of equipment.  It goes behind a truck and is placed behind an accident if it's blocking the road way and is likely to be hit again.  It collapses if hit and helps protect the car that hits it and whatever is blocking the road.

With a police motorcycle.

Aaron standing in front of the certification wall.  He's done lots of schooling and is certified to work on large and small equipment.

The girls in the back of a police car.  We told them we don't ever want to see them back there again!

Fire truck with the ladder up.

 When we finished looking at everything, they had grilled hotdogs for everyone.  It was fun and very interesting!

Sunday, June 18, 2023

Father's Day

 I hope you all had a nice Father's Day.  Ours was very different and quiet this year.

Most of you know that I had such a great dad!  He loved us all and always showed it.  He modeled his faith in the way he lived.
He passed away a little over 2 months ago, so this was our first Father's Day without him and he was very missed.  But there is great comfort in knowing he is now in perfect health and with his heavenly Father!

This picture was taken just a few days before he passed away.  This was a Friday and I had taken a day off to take him to a few different places.  One of our stops was at a little restaurant where he loved the milkshakes, so that's what he's holding here.
 The girls at work had teased me and said I needed to send a picture with him to prove I was really doing that.  I'm so glad they did because he passed away on Monday, and now I have this picture from a few days earlier.

Another great dad in my life is my husband.  He also loves his kids and will do anything for them. Like my Dad, he models his faith in the way he lives.
He got a terrible stomach bug and was sick all last week, hardly eating and barely getting up.

This is a picture I sent to our girls on Saturday to show them he was greatly improving and still had his sense of humor.

However, because his stomach is still touchy, we had no celebration.  We're trying for one this coming weekend and praying everyone stays healthy!

Happy Father's Day to all the special Dads out there!

Thursday, June 15, 2023

All good things must come to an end

 After we left TG and Jenny, we drove from South Carolina, through North Carolina, Virgina and into West Virginia. It was a long drive in terrible weather.  

We had several hours of torrential rain, and often heavy traffic.

As we drove, the weather calmed down.

We were happy to arrive at our hotel in West Virginia.  We were staying at a historic hotel, the Blennerhasset Hotel which was built in 1863. It was a beautiful place!

This was our room.

It was located in the oldest part of the building.

This library was open to guests.

JFK stayed here in 1960.
The hotel has it's own restaurant and we had a delicious meal out on the patio.

This courthouse was kitty corner from the hotel.

The next morning we walked through this area; the beams are from a bridge, there was also a railroad and just past this was the Ohio River.

We walked to the river and saw this bridge spanning it.

Then we got on this stern wheel boat which took us down the river to Blennerhasset Island.

We got off the boat and after a short walk, we saw this beautiful mansion.  It was originally built in 1800 by Harman Blennerhassett who was a wealthy Irish Immigrant.  He was involved in some shady issues with Aaron Burr (including possible treason!) and ended up leaving the area.  It burned down in 1811, but an exact replica was rebuilt which is what you see here.

This island has a long list of famous visitors, including: George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Zachary Taylor, Stephan Foster, George Custer, Charles Dickens, John Quincy Adams, William Henry Harrison, Ulysses Grant, Andrew Jackson, John Audubon, Daniel Boone, Aaron Burr and Meriwether Lewis.

While waiting to tour the mansion, this wagon came by. It makes such a pretty scene.

We enjoyed our tour, which included seeing some of the original furnishings.

This is the main bedroom.

The island is huge, about 500 acres.  A lot of it is wooded, but we were free to walk around and explore.  

This old log cabin is one of the things we saw on our path.

Near the cabin are these fields where we saw horses grazing.

This is another old home we were able to walk through.  It was lived in until 1980, even though it had no electricity.

We really enjoyed our wagon ride around the island.

We had a picnic lunch on the lawn.

This is a grove of walnut trees. Bob was wishing he could take some of the lumber home with him.

It was such a lovely day!

The next day we were up bright and early, out of the hotel about 7 am and ready for the long drive home.

And here we are - home sweet home!  We arrived home shortly before 5pm.  
1,946 miles, 8 states, (9 if you count Michigan) lots of beauty seen and priceless time with friends and family! We are thankful for the time away, and thankful to be home!
Thanks for following along on our travels. Next week I'll be back to regular blogging.