Saturday, June 30, 2007

So, I'm in bed the other night watching Rachel Ray's Tasty Travels and she's in NYC and she's visiting a restaurant called "Dips". It features fondue. (Go figure.) Dang, that looked so good. All I have to go on is the fondue that our friends, David and Teresa make and it is deeeelicious. Mmmmm. Totally made me want some.

Oh, did I mention that when I'm watching this the other night, we had already been invited to D&T's for dinner Saturday (meaning tonight)? It's true! But I didn't know what they were serving.

Well, by now, I bet you've figured out that they, indeed, by some miracle of nature, had fondue. And, oh my goodness, it was just as deeeeelicious as I remembered. What great timing! In addition to the bread and cheese you see above, there were also veggies to dip in the cheese. And there was hot oil for doing meat - we had beef, chicken and shrimp - plus two delectable dipping sauces for the meat (which we dipped everything in). One was a cilantro ranch sauce and one was a sesame ginger sauce. Can I tell you - this was a FONDUtastic meal. And I love how fondue takes a while to eat and you chat, and sip and dip and on and on.

Well, if that wasn't enough, there was bavarian chocolate at the end. We could drizzle it on little cheesecakes AND also dip into it such delicious little goodies as pound cake, rice crispie treats, marshmallows, strawberries and bananas. The bananas were hands down the best thing skinny dipping into that chocolate. WOWSERS! That definitely pushed me over the edge of delightfully satisfied to FULL!!

All of my fondue cravings have been quenched - for the time being anyway. I'd better be careful what I watch on the Food Channel next!

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Happy birthday to me! Oh, and happy anniversary, too. It's kinda sad that the first time I was wished happy birthday was when I signed in to to check my hotmail. Yep - MSN wished me happy birthday! In all fairness, I should say that Chris had already left for work when I got up. Hey, it's summer, no job AND it's my birthday - I can sleep IN! :)

I don't think there's going to be one special thing today, but we are planning a little jaunt to NYC to have dinner at our fave restaurant - Nino's - and to visit the Met. Museum of Art again. I think this will have to entail an overnight stay.... Working on finagling that...

Well, I'm involved in another circle journal. This time it's for the SIS website, which, by the way, I must say is so super cool. It was started by the wife of a member of the Christian Rock band Audio Adreneline and it is very "weighty" in the spiritual realm. Meaning that God is discussed, praised, included in the scrapping a lot and there's even a prayer request room on the message boards. And, mostly, the gals (and a few guys) on there are not only very talented scraptually, but also very fun, nice, supportive and women of high integrity and character. I can say this because I spend a lot of time (late at night, it seems) on the message boards and it's very apparent. VERY cool. It's an awesome community.

Anyway, I very much digress.... SO, I'm doing another circle journal with about a dozen other women this time. We have each picked different topics and they'll all be SO fun to scrap! Mine is "things you want to do before you die". Here's the cover page to my album:

I liked that quote for an inspiration to thinking about what ELSE you might like to do with your life before you die. I think it will be a fun subject as well. I can't tell you how many attempts I made at this page. Okay, I WILL tell you - 3 to be exact. Ripped the middle out 2 times. I'm happy with it now. And NOW, I'm going to go spend the rest of my birthday/anniversary (oh, that's 55/32 by the way) scrapbooking! Yeeha! :)

Saturday, June 23, 2007

This is where we've been this week... This is Blackwell, PA, where we rent a little cabin on an offshoot of this bigger creek (Pine Creek). It's at the base of what we call the "PA Grand Canyon". Oh, it's lovely. And sooooooo relaxing. And after all the wedding stuff, that's what we really needed. LOTS of relaxing!

Mission accomplished!

We biked, swam, hiked, grilled, ate out, had friends up, read, watched the wedding video, went to bed early and got up - well, okay, early. But we like that. All so wonderful and regenerating. I think my favorite part, though, is getting up and taking my coffee out to the little porch and listening to all the birdies sing as we watch the creek gurgling in front of us. We just kept saying, "now THIS is the life!".

NOT that we have it bad here at home, mind you! It's pretty darn swell here, too. But up there - people don't know our phone number and there aren't projects and responsibilities calling our names. And there's no creek 20 feet in front of our porch. Or a bike path 50 yards away. That's why they call it a "getaway"!

In other news, we found out last night that we are officially done with Fresh Air in all it's entirety. We retired as chairs last year (this being our first year off), but we said we'd have Dennis (our umpteenth Fresh Air child in 23 years of hosting...) as long as he wanted to come and then that would be it. Well, he couldn't come last year and last night I found out he's moving to ALASKA of all places - with his sister. How she came to that I'll never know, but if he thought PA was culture shock, he better hold on to his hat, socks, whatever, cuz they're gonna get knocked off! Can we say g-r-i-z-z-l-y b-e-a-r? Well, we'll miss Dennis and all his antics. He was like part of the family for sure....

So - our summer is now (with the exception of VBS this coming week) truly FREE. Wow. For the first time since we've had kids! I think I can handle it!

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Friday, June 15, 2007

This is a page for a scripture circle journal that I'm participating in. You create an album with a theme and my theme is "Words of Encouragement". Everyone is to share a bible verse that is encouraging to them (mine is on the page in the book just before the page above - it's Ps. 104:24, 33) and then scrap about how/why that verse encourages you. Then you send your whole album off to the next participant in the circle and they add their pages and send it on, etc. Everyone starts a book this way, so, hopefully - if everyone sends the journals around - at the end you end up with your album full of layouts by everyone in the circle. Cool, huh?

And TODAY - we are heading up to this very gorgeous place that I'm looking at - the PA Grand Canyon, specifically, Blackwell, PA - for a much needed week long getaway. We're packing now and I can feel the relaxation coming....just knowing we'll be there with nothing to do but bike, swim, read, eat and hang out... bring it on!
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Saturday, June 09, 2007


...Mr. and Mrs. Matthew Barlow!

Our long-planned-for day has finally come - and gone. And what a fantastic day it was! We were concerned about rain, but instead we had extreme heat. A fair trade because all the fairy maids and the fairy queen, Miss Martha, got to walk out of the woods as planned. It was truly magical. The rain did come later, but only after we were already under the tent eating and listening to the band and then it brought a very relieving cool-down. Everyone had a great time, the vows were beautiful and, well, now we are just enjoying the aftermath of food and visitors and memories of the day. And some napping. I quit taking photos shortly after the one above because I figured everyone else was taking them, including the professional photographer, and so I knew I'd be getting those. Can't wait to see all the photos and to preserve all the memories (i.e. scrap 'em)!

What will we do now????

Saturday, June 02, 2007

I love my new chair! And even though it goes really nicely with that blue rug underneath, it also goes fantastically well with the new rug we just got. I'm loving that, too. So, okay, I think we now have all the furniture secured. Chris is going to install some track lighting in the living room, but not until (way) after the wedding.

Chris brought Dustin up today and he's here for the week now. He got a new job, but he doesn't have to start until the 12th, so that will work out great. He can stay the whole week with us.

The Methodist church at the end of our driveway had a turkey dinner tonight. We thought we were getting there early by going at 4:30, but we actually had to wait for about 1/2 hour. Geesh! It was good. It's just kind of a fun thing to do, too. Real old-timey and country.

I'm off to get my beauty sleep b'cause we leave in the a.m. to get the newlyweds-to-be at the airport. They'll be in the air in about 3 hours from now....Godspeed...

Friday, June 01, 2007

Here's my latest scrapping creation. Yes, I have actually had time to scrap - at, like, 1 a.m.! This was for the 1st challenge at SIS - you were to take a pic you've been wanting to scrap and do it "andy warhol" style. I really like how this turned out. A bit of a stretch for me, cuz I usually do more "pretty, tidy" things, but I've been loving this style and want to do some more.

Chris has all the crap from the basement loaded in the truck and is dumping it at the, yes, dump - as I write. Whew. THAT was the last BIG project and now we're just down to regular little stuff like making up the beds, vacuuming, sweeping off the porch/deck, etc.

I am pretty good. I have a few little things on my own personal list - dust my scrap room (wouldn't let the cleaning ladies touch it!); re-arrange the CD's (like move some of 'em to a different location); make signs for our driveway/church parking; arrange/refill candles; tweak the last little bit of clutter (i.e. get RID of it) and that's about it.

But, baby, toNIGHT, we are going to celebrate! Chris and I are going to Franco's and enjoy a well-deserved "we did it" meal. I could almost get teary-eyed when I think about all that's been accomplished around here. Amazing. Okay, I had to exercise a bit of the push and prod and threaten technique, but we ARE still married and, well, it WORKED! :)

OH - the little reddish-orange chair we ordered to replace the queen-anne thingy that just didn't work anymore came today. I am LOVE, LOVE, LOVing it! It just looks GREAT in there with the sofa and pillows. I'll blog a picture of it soon. It's too cute. AND we got the new sofa/bed and ottoman for the TV room. Would you believe I haven't even been downstairs to see it in my own house since it came? I'll have to take a little walk down there. :) I KNOW we're gonna be lovin' that, too, and our BACKS will thank us as well. It will also be nice to have another bed for guests OR for when it's too stinkin' hot to sleep upstairs and we sleep in the lovely, cool "lower level". It IS a queen-size bed, so I know that will be happening.

Lastly, the rug we ordered online from Lowe's is in, so we'll go take a peek at that tonight and, if we like it, we'll figure out how in the heck to get it in the truck and bring that baby home and neatly deposit it underneath our gargantuan new sectional. It's "arts and crafts" style, so I hope the color works, b'cause the style would be perfect in our ever-evolving living room.

Well, I must go shower and get ready for our DATE! Yippeee!

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