Friday, August 31, 2012

12 in 2012 : another update




_X_ 1. Learn how to make fabric flowers successfully. 
Completed!! And why, oh why, did I wait until the end of August to try this?!? I LOVE it! In fact, it inspired a new painting series called Priscilla. I can't wait to show them to you when I'm finished. But in the mean time, here's my first crop of rolled fabric flowers:




___ 2. Read "Gone With the Wind"
Last time I confessed to you that I had read the synopsis of GWTW on Wikipedia and well, this just ain't happening. Sorry. I've got other things I want to do with my time. Maybe another year... maybe. 

___ 3. Have a savings account with a balance that never dips below $500. (We've got it right now, let's see if we can keep it.)
Well. We had that. Then we went to Red River, bought two new tires for the Tahoe, bought a water heater, and our having to pay for attorney fees for BB's hearing and for his adoption coming up as well. Goodbye savings. BUT, I've been doing a look-through of our budget and September is going to bring about some changes. We make too much money to not have a savings account. That's just dumb to not have. So, we're getting back to that. 

___ 4. Lose 30 pounds. (I reset my Weight Watchers [WW] account today, I'm ready to start again!)
Almost there! I lost 25 pounds, and I kind of fell of my diet. :( And gained back 6 pounds. Whoops. It's the same thing that happened last year. BUT, this year, I'm refocusing and will try to spur on for the next 4 months so, come January 1st, I'll be 11 pounds lighter and will have met my goal! YAY!


___ 5. Run a 5K (oh Lord, help me.)
Umm... not happening. I told myself that I was either going to run a 5K or get pregnant. Well, I'm not doing either. BUT, we did get a newborn this summer and that's been pretty life-consuming, along with having a toddler running around. 5Ks can wait, babies are only tiny babies for so long. ;) 

_X_ 6. Purge my life & home of things that aren't beautiful and/or necessary.
While I am marking this one completed, I know this is an on-going task. But I've got a good start on it and hopefully it becomes more of a natural thing to do than something I need to set as a goal. 

_X_ 7. Prioritize my time, organize my home.
It's not always easy, and sometimes I do fail, but this goal is making our life better. Joey and I implemented a new "Family Night" for every Thursday evening where we spend time together as a family. All of us. Even the dog, lol. It's important to us to have that time together and that bond with each other and the children. 

___ 8. Work on my children's book/game ideas.
Hmmm.... this one has kind of taken a back seat to me growing my Etsy shop (and raising two boys). But I did look at my notebook of ideas the other day and two of my ideas are really stirring in me.

___ 9. Pay off at least 2 "dumb" debts. (like credit cards, etc.)
In progress. At this point, my new goal is to have just ONE of those dumb debts paid off. 

___ 10. Read the entire Bible in one year. 
In progress. I don't think I'm going to complete this, but I do read everyday and am studying for a class I'm teaching in September, so I'm reading.... just not through the whole Bible, yet. And that's okay with me. 

_X_ 11. Take more pictures. 
Yep! I take pictures all the time. Unfortunately, I can't show many to you because most of the pictures I take are of the boys. But, after BB's adoption goes through (which will be a while still) I'll catch you up on all the pictures. :) 

Here are some of my Instagram pics: 











If you'd like to follow me on Instagram, click here: 



_X_ 12. Write more. (journaling, blogging, letters)
Yes, I've been journaling, writing more letters and have been trying to blog more writings and not just my regular blog stuff.

So in a recap, I've completed 5 goals. Am on my way to completing at least 3 others and have given up (for this year at least) on 3 other goals. I think this year has been good so far, and hopefully I can have a new surge of gusto for the next four months and complete more goals. 



Did anyone else have any new year's resolutions or goals in mind? How did those turn out?




Wednesday, August 29, 2012

goodies : for the kids

Hi y'all! I think an alternate title for this post would be, "I LOVE DINOSAUR BUTTS!!!" 

But I thought that a little much for some.

Having two little boys at home, one, who has so gracefully cannon-balled into the toddler years, is exhausting. But it's also a lot of fun. BB is walking, climbing, opening and shutting doors, talking, and just an active little boy. It's fun watching him discover new things and learning more and more every day. I love that he isn't that interested in TV. We've even tried watching some kid movies with him and they only hold his interest for a little while, then he's ready to get back to playing. That's wonderful, and I hope he keeps that up.

Keep playing, keep that wonder, use that imagination, little one, your childhood will be much better if you do.

Right now, his favorite toys are balls and anything that has wheels. But eventually, I know his interests will change as he does, and when they do, I've found some wonderful children's items on Etsy that I look forward to getting him one day. Have you seen all of the awesome things the wonderful people on Etsy have to offer??

Here are some of my favorites : 


I seriously love these! They are so cute and fun! I'm hoping he eventually enters a dinosaur phase so I can buy these for our fridge. 

I love all the different shaped crayons available on Etsy. I already bought him so lego robot crayons, but I might have jumped the gun a bit and bought them for him when he was too young. He was more interested in eating them, than coloring. But eventually, he'll start coloring more and these are definitely on my list for when that happens. 

Also essential when it comes time for the coloring phase, crayon rolls. When we had our older set of foster children I remember packing coloring books and a box of crayons for them for church. It was great! Except for one thing, how noisy they could be with that box. This is so much better than a box. It'e quite, more compact, AND small enough that both kids could have had one. Lesson learned. When BB and M get old enough, they're getting one of these. Although, probably not in pink... ;) 

I love cute toys. I love educational toys. This covers both of those bases equally. An adorable tree with detachable apples for when BB is counting and learning basic math skills. Oh he's going to be so smart... :D



This book also covers both of the above-mentioned bases. Education and cute. And it is also quiet. I'm definitely looking into making something like this for BB. He loves books, and definitely needs some new ones in his toy pile at church. 

What an adorable pouch! Seriously, it makes me smile every time I look at it!

Okay... at first I thought this was a back pack and was completely smitten with it. Then I realized it was a lunch bag. But that's okay... still smitten! How cute is this!?!?

I'm a fan of puppets and puppet shows. I think it's great for kids to use their imaginations to come up with their own story lines. 

Oh the hours of fun a kid would have, dreaming up all the magic they'd do with one of these babies!


And what kid wouldn't want their own tent? I'm already thinking that BB is going to be a kid that loves building forts, having hidey-holes, and secret spaces. He loves getting under one of my office work tables, and pushing my bins around to hide him. And he loves crawling in the small space between the couches and playing underneath the end table. I think a tent will definitely be something of interest to him in a couple of years. 


Aren't those great?!? And even if you don't have kids of your own, I'm sure nieces, nephews, cousins, and kids around you would love any of these awesome toys!!

I remember using my imagination a lot when I was a kid. The propane tank outside was everything from a mighty war horse, to a submarine, to a pirate ship! The large garden at my grandparents' was a magic forest. And my closet was a transporter. I'm definitely looking forward to encouraging imaginative play with BB and M! 

I think some of my favorite toys were my kitchen set, my Talimena doll (that was her name because my grandpa found her on Talimena Drive and brought her home to me), and the great outdoors!

What were your favorite toys as a child?




Friday, August 24, 2012

Project Recap : Paintings

Hi y'all! I've been busy working on lots of new projects. One of those projects includes new paintings. I'm sending some to my BFF's store near our hometown, but the paintings are also available via my Etsy shop Live Delightfully!! You can order your very own custom painting for your nursery/room in your choice of colors! Here's a sneak peek at what I've done so far:
I made this one custom for a customer and I love it! I also just love the fact that it's going to a little girl's room that's done in aqua and red. One of my favorite color combinations! Gorgeous!!

I love this color! I love it! I might have to do one of these for one of the boys' rooms.

Purple is so pretty! I think we should all agree on that. ;) 

This was the first one of the "Let Her Sleep..." paintings I did. I just adore the glitter-topped mountains (no glitter on the red one). I know some people don't appreciate glitter, but I just love it!

I'm working on a "Let Him Sleep..." one in seafoam green right now. ;) 

This song is one of my favorites to sing to the boys when I rock them. And although BB is growing from baby to boy so quickly, I still take every opportunity to sing and rock him that I can. 

I'm currently working on the grey counter-part to this painting that will have the next line on it. 


I tell ya, my head is just swirling with ideas for new paintings. And I've got all these supplies for new garlands and such. I've already started on some lovely fall garlands and there might be a garland of ghosts hanging in my office right now... ;) haha! I've also been working on some new items for a special collaboration, so really, LOTS of new things going down on the Live Delightfully front. I just need some extra time in the day. Or a clone. A clone would work too. 

I think it's time to start writing out my To-Do list instead of just keeping it in my head. 

What's at the top of your To-Do list right now?






Thursday, August 23, 2012

me : see beauty

{ photography by J.M. Barclay }

{ Twigs. Sticks. Dirt. Mud. Hair. Feathers. Bird spit. }

Seeing those words together, doesn't seem very appealing. It seems pretty dirty, and gross, and like something we would avoid. 

{ Shelter. Nest. Home. }

Seeing those words together, brings up feelings of joy, comfort, peace, belonging. 

Strange. How we can be talking about the exact same thing, yet the emotions can be completely opposite. Just depending on how you see it. 

..................

I finally feel like I'm getting back into the swing of things. The past few weeks I've been working, blogging, crafting, taking care of children, all the things I normally do, but not with the heart and gusto I normally have because I've been such a bundle of nerves about the hearing for BB. But now, it's over. 

Deep breath. 

In.

Hold. 

Out. 

It's over.

And now, I finally feel normal again. But it's weird, I didn't know how stressed I was until I was suddenly de-stressed. Living a stressed life had become a new normal for me, and I was forcing myself to create, forcing myself to blog, trying to keep things as "normal" as possible when really, I just wanted to withdraw and dive into that thick, sticky pool of self-pity and "What-Ifs" that so often tries to ensnare me. I dodged that pool for the most part. I didn't get completely sucked in. At least until the weekend before the hearing. Last Sunday, I was a WRECK. A nervous, emotional, anxious wreck. 

But now, I feel a sense of rejuvenation. Like a new year, a new month, a new breath has just washed over my soul, allowing me to enjoy things again. To see things, not for what they might be... the last bath, the last morning, the last visit with Granny and Grandpa, but seeing things for all the beauty in them. 

The fun and excitement of bath time. The sleepy, softness of mornings. The joy and love of visits with Granny and Grandpa. 

I'm finally able to remove the dingy glasses of worry and anxiety, and rejoice in the beauty that is around me. The beauty that is knowing I have a little boy. 

A son. 

My son! 

Things in my life aren't that different. I still have my blog, my crafting, my boys, my husband, and all the other things to check off, to to-do, to take care of, to enjoy. But what I was seeing as sad, worrisome, a bother, a chore, I can now see as happiness, an accomplishment, an opportunity, a treasure. What was a "have to" is now a "get to". 


I hope that whatever is going on in your life, you are taking in the beauty. You are choosing to see beauty all around, in every little moment. 



Tuesday, August 21, 2012

me : foster parenthood : letters

Dear Readers, 

Thank you all for your continued support and encouragement of my blog. It truly warms my heart. I especially want to thank you for your support and encouragement during this difficult time of fighting for BB, our foster-child. This blogging community continues to absolutely amaze me. The warmth, the friendship, the endless support, it's astounding. Thank you, each of you, for your encouraging comments, for your prayers, and positive thoughts and well wishes. 

And now... for the big announcement: BB is staying with us!!

The judge ruled to terminate the rights of both parents. The mother has 30 days to appeal, then the case moves to adoption. It can take 3 months for the adoption to be final, but then, he's ours. Legally. He's always been ours, we're just making it official. 

Thanks to everyone for following along this journey. I look forward to getting the "okay" to "introduce" him to you all via pictures and videos. 


Dear C. & P., 

You're both troopers who got there with us at 9:00 am at the courtroom, and stayed until 9:00 pm when the judge finally made his ruling. I thank you, wholeheartedly, for your support. I can't believe you sat on those uncomfortable benches all day! You're the best!! And C., you did wonderful on the stand testifying. What you said, backed up what I said, almost exactly. Great job! But, of course, that's easy to do when you're just telling the truth.


Dear S. & J., 

Thank you for coming out to show your support. Ya'll are so sweet and I thank God they we are so blessed to have special people like you who come out to support us and stay longer than they should. Like, staying, even after one of you have ran out of oxygen and are making the other person a nervous wreck!


Dear M., 

Thanks for being a great caseworker. Really. You're wonderful!


Dear BB,

I thank God for you. I truly do. You're a handful, a lovable, loving, kind, mischievous, loud, funny, smart, daring little boy. And you're ours. Forever. I did not carry you in my body, but I carry you in my arms. You were not born from my body, you were born in my heart. I love you, always and forever. 


Dear BB's mother, 

It was terrible to listen to all of the testimony about you. I'm sure it was even worse for you. I'm sorry for you. I feel so, so, so sorry for you. I know exactly what you lost yesterday, and it was a great one. But more than that, I'm sorry what you did to BB before he came to us. He never deserved that. I'm sorry for what you have lost. But I also know that this is the best thing for him. 


Dear Joey Daddy, 

He's ours. All ours. Really ours. Forever ours. Get ready. You're handling the potty training. And I don't mean in the back yard. Get ready. There will be many years ahead of football watching/playing, bike riding, knee scraping, trouble making, hug giving, hand holding, book reading, game playing, homework doing, all loving boy time ahead for us. Get ready. You're really a dad. Just as you've been for the past 10 months with him. 



Friday, August 17, 2012

fashion : summer fade

Hi y'all! What a busy week it's been! But I feel so accomplished! We finally finished painting BB's room (I think). I need to remove the tape and make sure that everything is up to par. Today Joey's parents are coming in and I'm looking forward to that! Joey and his dad are going to replace the water heater at our old house, and replace the dishwasher here at the new house. We're hoping to get our old house ready to rent starting in September. We decided renting it is better than paying a full mortgage payment every month for a house we don't live in. Exciting stuff!

And yesterday was the last day of two-a-days football practice. I know, my husband's a preacher. But he's also a football (and sports) fanatic and here in our small town, he gets to help coach the football team. To say he's excited would be an understatement. Balancing these new practice times with our regular life as been challenging, but we survived the hard part. Now we're to the fun part of regular afternoon practices and Friday night football games will be coming up soon. HOORAY!

There's also been this LOVELY cold front here that's been wonderful. We're talking the highs only get up to the mid 90s. Halleluyer!


Which might have inspired this 



First this gorgeous photograph: 

| image source : BokehEverAfter |

And now for some lovely fashion : 



Inspired by the slow fade of summer, into the golden days of autumn. 

I'm so excited about autumn. 

While I love all seasons very much, autumn has a special place in my heart. 

Just two more weeks until the first weekend in September, which is the weekend I put out my fall decor! I'm so excited! And this year, I think I'm going to put out some new decor of gorgeous white pumpkins. I'm in love with the elegance of them!

Check out these beauties made by my friend Lindsay : 

Available here : PA Country Crafts for only $15!!

Yeah, I'm going to have to order those soon! 

Are you putting up any new decor this year? 

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

me : evening music

He in the tub. I sitting next to it, book in hand. I've washed his hair, scrubbed his body, played with the new little water bug toy that he hasn't decided he likes yet. And now we're going through the colors and shapes of the toys in the tub. He says "circle" and "purple" and "orange" and "star" and "ball". Although the only one he actually knows is ball. But he's great at mimicking. Such a scary thought!

We talk about water, and there's always the duck and how it "quack quack quack"s all around the tub. I ask him about his day, did he have fun? Was it a good day? Did he have fun playing with Maddie (our mini-nanny)? He says "yeah"! He always says "yeah". 

He holds up his index finger and says some jibberish that is very important. I have no idea what it is, but I listen very intently. I nod my head in agreement, prod him on to keep going. He doesn't need the prodding. He gets louder. He repeats his "sentences". He's got a lot to say. And I just listen. 

In the background I hear Daddy wrestling with the wee one who is being extra fussy today. For no other reason than he's just growing, and with growing comes those days where he just wants to eat and eat and eat. Daddy gives him a bath and fixes him a new bottle to the tune of constant crying, almost wailing. 

Cries of hunger. Jibberish in the bathtub. This is the music of our evenings. 

Sometimes it doesn't feel like we're parents. It's hard to believe that we are. Maybe it's the fact that there was no pregnancy to prep us, I don't know. Maybe it's because I just feel so.... young. How can I be old enough for this? Old enough to be the voice for a duck? Old enough to get up at nights for crying little ones? Old enough to be responsible for these two tiny humans?!? 

But I am old enough. 

I am a parent. 

I am responsible for the molding of these two boys, these two hearts. Who will one day grow up and be much too big for me to sit next to the bath tub with a book in hand, listening to the jibberish of their day. 

I just hope that no matter how big they get, they know that I'll listen to them, whatever it is they have to say.


Add caption








Monday, August 13, 2012

weekly loves : in review

Hi y'all! I didn't get a chance last week to do my weekly loves post, so I'm starting off the week with it instead. Some of these hit me last week, some this weekend, and some this morning. 






| image source : pbs.com |
♥ I love Downton Abbey! Does anyone else watch this show? I've been hearing about it for a while now, and had it in my Instant Que on Netflix, and I finally took the time to watch the first season a couple weeks ago. I LOVE IT! I was so disappointed the 2nd season wasn't on Netflix as well, so I'm contemplating doing the free trial of Hulu Plus, or maybe just purchasing the seasons... 
I love the exchanges and instant rivalry between Violet and Isobel. I love Anna and want her and Mr. Bates to be together. Mary is a wretched sister! I know some people love her independence, but you can be independent without being so hateful and spiteful to your sisters. I don't want her to end up with Matthew, but I have a feeling she does anyway. I want Thomas to get his "come-uppits". And mostly, I just LOVE the setting! Gorgeous! 

♥ I love cool, gray mornings when it's sprinkling outside. 

♥ I love when both boys are asleep and I have enough energy to get things done. 

♥ I love this book! I've read through (most of it) twice now, and I'm currently re-reading it again, but doing so more in-depth as I'm preparing to facilitate a Ladies' Class at church using this book. It's such a wonderful book and definitely changed my life and my perspective on things. 

♥ I love Sunday afternoon naps. Although, I've about decided that naps aren't nearly as important as being productive. Except when you don't have the energy to focus on anything. In that case, naps it is!


♥ I love these little feet. And the little boy they are attached to. He smiles at me all the time now, when I start talking to him. He may not be able to control his head or sit up, but he knows who his momma is and I absolutely love that. He also smiles at daddy and at big brother. It's seriously the cutest thing and I hope and pray that no court separates these two. 

♥ I love that the big brother in our house is such a good big brother. He has reached that age where he wants to help with things now. He can throw things in the trash if you ask him. He can throw things in the trash if you don't ask him. Things like shoes, clothes, toothbrushes, sippy cups, pacifiers. And we've been missing a bottle now for a couple of weeks and I've pretty much decided that it met an untimely demise in our trash can. He will stand in front of the dryer and if I hand him clothes from the washer he will put them in the dryer for me. He's darling, I just love him!

♥ I love Mondays because it's a new week, full of fresh, new possibilities. And this week, it means we get to count down to not only the weekend, but Joey's parents coming down this weekend! YAY! So excited to introduce McCrae to his Granny and Grandpa!

I know it's only Monday, but what do you love right now?











Friday, August 10, 2012

fashion : rhinestone cowgirl

Hi y'all! And happy Friday! Seriously, what a week! One of my programs that I work with online started their semester this week so I've been busy making orientation calls for them. We've had several visits with various people for the foster kiddos: caseworkers, ECI, occupational therapists, etc. It's just been a busy week. But thankfully, it's Friday, and I'm hoping Joey and I can go on a date either tonight or tomorrow afternoon. Let's all cross our fingers that we find a sitter. Or if you live nearby and want to babysit two darling little boys, let me know. ;) 

Many of you know, I grew up in a small town. Actually, small town doesn't even accurately describe it. It's a tiny community, really. And I grew up around older people. I was mostly raised by my grandparents, a lot of the people in our community were older people, I grew up listening to old country music, watching black and white westerns, and watching Andy Griffith and Gunsmoke everyday after school. I grew up country, in the country. And it really was a magnificent way to grow up. 

Who I hung out with after school!

I still love both of these shows and still watch them today if I can catch them. 

But back then, I didn't like it all the time. I longed for the updated fashions, cool trends, "going to the mall with my friends" kind of nights. So I tried my best to wear the "cool" clothes, and stayed away from all things "cowgirl" and "country". What was I thinking?!? There was even one point in junior high or high school that my dad offered to buy me a whole new wardrobe, as long as it was boots, jeans, and "country" wear. Of course, I turned him down, because while he wanted me to shop at Bernard's and other "western-themed" stores, I wanted to shop at The Buckle, The Gap, and the mall. 

Well, needless to say, as I grew older, I came to appreciate all things country, and looking back, I loved the life I had. And now I love wearing my boots (that Joey bought for my birthday a couple years ago), and wearing big jewelry is always fun. Nowadays, I look back and wish I had taken my dad up on his offer, and I also wish I had prodded him on more to buy me a horse and let me take lessons to be a barrel-racer in the rodeo. 

Around here, it's rodeo season. There was the Old Settler's Rodeo last weekend that, unfortunately, we didn't get to go to because it's just way too hot to take a baby like McCrae. Or me. But we did go to the parade in the morning and BB got to see some horses. He wasn't that interested. He was more into watching the kids run around picking up all the candy being thrown. But hopefully, we can take him to a rodeo soon, or at the very least, go visit someone with horses so he can see and pet a horse. 

And with all this horse, western wear, and rodeo talk, I had the inspiration for this post : 


| image source : EyeHeartPhoto |
"Hi horse, why the long face?"

Okay, so I'm no comedian. But where my jokes are lacking, this picture makes up for in fun and heart-warming nostalgia. I mean, how can you not smile when looking at this photo?

And for the fashion : 

rhinestone cowgirl



I'm a big fan of wearing boots with dresses. I love it! And this little lace number is gorgeous, and just needed to be paired with some stellar cowboy boots. Spice it up with a little turquoise and red, I think we're on to something! I love this look and I would totally wear it to a rodeo. And instantly be crowned Rodeo Queen. 

How do you feel about "western wear" and wearing boots with dresses?

Thursday, August 9, 2012

recipes : easy salsa & (also easy) spanish rice

Hi y'all! The boys woke up early this morning. Both of them. Which is quite troubling since Joey is busy helping out the local football team with their two-a-days right now. Thankfully, he had time to feed McCrae while I hopped in the shower. If it's one thing that I've learned as a mom of two under two, it's that you take advantage of any shower time you can get. And I'm really awesome at doing things one-handed. And my diaper changing speed and skill is seriously Olympic gold medal worthy. 

But all of that has absolutely nothing to do with my post today. Except that maybe these recipes are so easy you could do them in the shower, one-handed, while changing a diaper, at the Olympics. Maybe. 

Last week I shared a yummy recipe for Sour Cream Enchiladas. This week, I'm including the sides. 

First off is the Spanish Rice. I can't really take a lot of credit for this one because I found the recipe online. But here's the thing, I love Spanish rice. And for a long time I used the pre-seasoned packets for Taco Rice, Spanish Rice, etc. and none of them were up to par. My few attempts at making it any other way, definitely didn't work out. So it got to a point where if I was fixing Mexican food and was having people over, I'd ask them to bring the rice. Hoping, that they would have a yummy recipe I could borrow, or at the very least, the would be opening a packet just like I would have done. 

Then I found this recipe. Life changed. I don't have any Hispanic heritage, but when I make this rice, I make other people's Hispanic heritage proud. And it's seriously easy. So here you go: 





Ingredients : 

2 TB oil
2 TB chopped onion
1 1/2 cups of uncooked instant white rice
2 cups of chicken broth
1 cup chunky salsa

Directions : 

1. Heat oil in a large heavy skillet over medium heat. Stir in onion, and cook until tender. 
2. Mix rice into skillet, stirring often. When rice turns a clear, almost golden brown color, stir in the chicken broth and salsa. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 20 minutes, until liquid has been absorbed. 

Those are the basic instructions. Very easy, very delicious. You will amaze people at your authentic Mexican dish. They will be in awe. 

Now, just a few variations and tips : 

♥ If you don't have onion, just use onion powder. 
♥ If you use the low sodium chicken broth, add a little garlic salt to the skillet when you pour in the chicken broth and salsa. 
♥ THE SALSA IS KEY. Seriously. The salsa is what makes this dish amazing, so it will only be as good as the salsa you use. The first time I used Pace Picante Sauce and while it was yummy, it wasn't as good as it could have been. Now, I use Leal's brand salsa, which, unless you live around here, you aren't going to be able to find because it's a locally made salsa. But Leal's isn't chunky at all, but it's still delicious. So don't think you have to have the chunky salsa the recipe calls for. But find a good salsa that you love, and it will make this dish come alive with flavor and goodness. For reals. 


Next up is my salsa recipe. This is especially important as football season approaches because we have Salsa Saturdays! We're big college football fans. (I say "we" because Joey is a fanatic and I like watching it and keeping up with certain teams *cough* OU *cough*.) During football seasons, on Saturdays I make salsa and we let people know that anyone can come over and stay for as little or as long as they'd like, and just hang out watching football and eating chips and salsa. Voila! Salsa Saturdays!

My salsa recipe isn't difficult, but I must warn you, I eyeball everything when it comes to the salsa. So if you're looking for a recipe with exact ingredients, sorry, this isn't it. Which is great because some people like a little more jalapeno, some more cilantro, it's completely up to you on how you make it. But here are the basics : 

I make mine in a blender, so get your blender out. Blenders also make it easy to pour into individual cups. 

Ingredients : 

2 cans of ro-tel (or more if you want a lot of salsa)
cilantro
a spoonful minced garlic 
a squirt lemon juice
salt
jalapeno (Remove the seeds and just add a bit of jalapeno at a time, I learned this the hard way. Also make sure you THOROUGHLY wash your hands after handling the jalapeno before you touch your eye. I also learned this the hard way. And if you don't do this, and you touch your eye, throw that contact away. Do NOT try to put it back in your eye, even if you rinse it off. Wow, jalapenos are very educational.)
seasonings - I use fajita seasoning, onion powder, creole seasoning, and a smidge of sugar. 

In your blender combine all of your ingredients. Blend thoroughly and take a taste. (This is the fun part. Standing over the salsa with the chip bag and "taste-testing".) Not hot enough? Add more jalapeno. Need more cilantro? Cut off a few more sprigs and throw in there. The great thing is that you can really add more ingredients until you get the taste just right for your family. Perfect! 

This is also a really cheap snack because the ro-tel is about $1/can, and if you make it often like I do, you can buy a big jar of minced garlic and lemon juice to always keep on hand. I can go down to the grocery store and get fresh cilantro and jalapeno when I'm ready to make salsa and it's less than a dollar for those. So really easy and inexpensive, and oh so perfect for watching football!

Enjoy!!

Also, BB is now tall enough to open doors and climb onto the couches. Nothing is safe in my house anymore. And this picture pretty much says it all: