4 Little Fergusons Top 20: #9 – 4

  If you are just tuning in, I am counting down the top 20 blog posts this week, in honor of 4 little Fergusons blog turning 1 tomorrow!

Get caught up here:

Part 1

Part 2

  Today we count down 9-4:

9) Welcome to Tonya-land

image

When you visit my blog, you have crossed under the rainbow and entered “Tonya-land” where the weather is mostly sunny, the birds are always singing, lemons most often come in the form of lemonade and we all throw our arms around each others shoulders and sing “Kumbaya” at that end of each day.

003 Now Tonya-land has its bumpy roads, don’t get me wrong, but when you try to keep your glass half full, you usually can just keep on trucking, despite a pot-hole or two. But, every once in a while, my journey through Tonya-land comes to a screeching halt.

Recently, my rainbow tipped over, my lemonade tasted a bit more like straight sunshine-for-a-mlemons and a series of pot holes made me trip and fall. The birds are still singing though, and the sun will come out tomorrow, right Annie?

Apparently, this blog is a little too sunshine-y for some folks, a little too “fake” I believe was the word…

Read more here….

8) Confessions of A Stubborn Child of God

It’s Mother’s Day week. Once again I am bombarded with emotions I can’t always sort through. This may be the epitome of bitter-sweet.

I wonder how many years the sad will collide with the happy this week:

I am the Mommy to 4 beautiful little miracles here on earth.

Fergusons2

I am the Mommy of 4 little ones in Heaven.

angel4

It was the Thursday before Mother’s Day, when I lost my 4th baby.

It was the Thursday before Mother’s Day that everything changed for me.

It was the Thursday before Mother’s Day, that I became free from a heavy heavy burden I had strapped on my own shoulders.

It was the Thursday before Mother’s Day, that my arms were freed from the buckets of cement I had been dragging for 2 long, emotionally exhausting years of ‘trying’.

Trying to make a baby.

Trying to keep a baby.

Trying to let go of all my preconceived notions of what I “deserved”, what I had dreamed of my WHOLE life, but never really doing it.

I spent nearly 2 years operating within my own will.

Read more here and please continue to parts 2 & 3 or click the links below.

Part 2: Hope for the Hopeless

Part 3: Heaven Is For Real

7) Date Your Mate, Even If It’s Tuesday

When you have little ones, date night starts to naturally take a back seat to the chaos called ‘life with kids’. In fact, the MORE little ones you have, the less you even think about date night. It’s a thing of the past, a distant memory of days gone by. Besides, how could you want to leave a face like this?????

Heck, even if you WANTED to go out, you are often too exhausted to even think of making the effort to take off the spit up smelling sweatshirt & coordinating sweats.

You know, the ones with snot crusties about knee height? Yup, those. (This is precisely why there is an entire “Home clothes” section of my closet!) And put on full makeup?? What’s that? IMPORTANT, that’s what. No, no, not necessarily JUST the makeup part, the whole shebang…you know, the getting fixed up and going on a date part!

As a stay at home mom who lives in baggy shirts with snot crusted pants and house shoes, its important, even if I am too tired, to get fixed up once in a while, get a sitter and go out to dinner with my hunny. Yeah, it’s a lot of work and effort. Yeah, we usually sit and talk about the kids anyways, but I am investing in Dale, in my relationship with him outside of the children we share. I am giving him my full time and attention. I am reconnecting with my best friend. I am dressing up and leaving the “home clothes” section of my closet behind! 🙂 And, even though he says he doesn’t care if I do makeup or not, I know he appreciates it, that when we go out together, I get fixed up for him. I want him to be proud to have me on his arm!

Read more here….

6) “The Rod”

This one got a lot of hits due to it’s contraversy. It’s actually part of a 3 part Seires on Discipline, linked in order below:

Starting Discipline: Part 1

Paxton

060

Avery

035

Tylan

Scan_Pic0036

Destiny

Scan_Pic0037

In our family, starting solids is not just a new stage for our babies to experience. It’s not just funny faces and messy mouths. We take it very seriously, because as soon as our children are old enough to sit up in a highchair to eat their baby cereal, we start a WHOLE new chapter in their lives……..

We start teaching basic manners and we start to discipline them.

Read more here…..

“The Rod”: Part 2

Meet “The Rod”….

104

You know, as in “Spare the rod, spoil the child.”

(Adapted Proverbs 13:24 “Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him.”)

Phase II of our Discipline is introducing “The Rod”. This occurs when a spank on the leg is no longer affective.

Here’s how it goes down at our house:

#1 The child makes a wrong choice and needs help making the right one. Or needs help getting wrong behavior or bad attitude under control.

#2 We send said child to their room, to think about their actions, while they wait to be disciplined.

Read more here….

Good-bye Pushover Parenting, Hello Happy Kids: Part 3

As Destiny has gotten older, we have started giving her the responsibility of choosing her punishment. One especially difficult evening, Dale had enough of her disobedience, and told Destiny that she had until the end of supper to make a decision:

  • Lose a new Christmas toy for an undetermined amount of time

OR

  • Get a spank

Her meal was spent in silent contemplation, as she considered her choices. And boy, did that last bite sit on her plate for a looong time. We could really tell she was struggling with her decision. Dale decided since it was a first offense and the first time we had offered such a decision, to show her grace, this time. He told her so and clearly layed out what would occur the next time around.

Later, she left him this note:

026 (2)

To Dad:

It was a hard decision. Thank you for showing me grace.

Love: Destiny

Read more here….

 

5) Seeing God’s Provision: Part 2 of 3

 It’s funny to me how one post in particular of a 3 part series, draws substancially more than the rest. 


Seeing God’s Provision

  When I ended yesterday, God had just provided Valentines and Laundry detergent for our family. He was teaching me to rely on Him and Him alone to provide for ALL our needs, and even some wants, like the Valentines. Something that seemed so trivial to me, but something that screamed PROVISION on the Lord’s part.

During month number 3 of waiting for our check, and choosing to continue to refrain from grocery shopping, the supplies in our pantry and deep freeze were rapidly diminishing. Again, God provided in a way only HE could. He is SO good to provide for my every need before it even crosses my mind to ask Him for them!!!!!!!

I owed a promised photo order to a friend and had to call her and apologize that I was unable to place my order with her or pay her, until we received this illusive check. She was very gracious and gave me an extended time to take care of it. We hung up, and I felt much better about it all.

Not 5 minutes later HER MOTHER shows up at my door toting bags and bags of groceries for us.

I was blown away.

I just stood there and WEPT, as she brought in load after load of food for us.

Here this precious woman, who only knew me through her daughter, was allowing God to use her, to provide for a need of ours. She told me that just yesterday, she was looking in her cupboards wondering why she had so much food for just her husband and herself? She instantly knew why, when she heard of our situation. She was going to share her food with us, asking only for prayer in return. What an amazing moment! It was food for my soul as much as for my families tummies!

It was right after this that the Lord started showing me verses about the Sparrows not worrying about what they will eat, or what they will wear, yet my Father in Heaven cares enough to feed them. He also reminded me that He wanted me to rely on Him to meet my needs for today and today only.

Period.

Read more here….

Part 3 of the series, God Loves Me Too Much To Leave Me As I Am is found right after it by clicking to the next post.

4) Once Upon A Time, Part 1 of 4

I can hardly believe it, but today is Dale & my 9th Anniversary! Time flies when you are having babies, I mean fun!

Happy Anniversary, Dale! I am so blessed that God allowed me to marry you, the man of my dreams! Just when I think I couldn’t possibly love you any more than I already do, I see you scoop up one of our children in a giant daddy bear hug or stoop down low to kiss an owie knee. When you loving stroke the cheek of our baby as you lay him in his crib, or come up behind me and kiss my neck while I am doing supper dishes, my love for you grows a bit more. Not just any kind of love, the forever and ever, till death do us part kind of love…… A love that lasts a lifetime. Happy 9th Anniversary, honey! I love you! xo ~T

In honor of our 9th anniversary, and seeing as how this is my blog’s first year and we are all still getting to know each other, I’d like to tell you the story of how Dale and I met.

Let’s start waaaaaaay back at the beginning………..

Once upon a time, when I was a little girl, I loved fairy tales, LOVED them, as little girls seem to do. I played bride and princess and dreamed of my very own Happily Ever After………..

Scan_Pic0112

My little brother, Chad, made such a lovely Maid of Honor! 🙂

But more often than not, I played Mommy……

Scan_Pic0111

Read more here….

Look what still lives in Dale’s wallet 11 years later…The Original Phone Number. 🙂

The rest of the story may be found by clicking the next post after you are done reading. (They are also linked below if you’d like to access them that way instead.)

Summer Love: Part 2 of 4

Letter From God

Letting God Write Your Love Story: Part 3 of 4

My Very Own Happily Ever After: Part 4 of 4

Tune in tomorrow for the TOP 3 Blog Posts from my 1st year of Blogging…

~T

4 Little Fergusons Top 20: #14 to 10

In honor of 4 little Ferguson’s blog turning 1 on Thursday, I am counting down the top 20 posts based on blog stats.  Go back to yesterday’s first post to get caught up……

14) Ladies Man

What can I say?

Paxton is a ladies man!

077

They just um, “flock” to him.

Check it out:043

Read more here….

13) 4 Eyes Are Better Than 2

Guess who had to get glasses?

002

Nope, not Avery. But she sure looks cute!

001

Nope, not Ty either, but he sure was sad that he couldn’t take his favorite blue pair home. (not pictured)

It was Destiny!

005

Read more here….

12) “Child Safe” Scissors?! Riiiight….

Avery loves to have “cutting time”. Cutting is a great thing to learn around age 2. I promote it! I am glad she enjoys it! It’s great for their developing motor skills!

Avery is grounded from scissors until further notice.

Avery decide to use said scissors to saw off a chunk of her hair.

And I do mean saw off.

They are Child Proof Scissors. They aren’t supposed to cut anything but paper. They are dull as all get out.

Exhibit A:

Guilty face. Nervous giggle.

“Uh, momma? I cut my hair.”

It sounded more like “uhmommaicutmyheyo” in I’m-in-Big-Trouble-so-I-am-Going-To-Mumble Avery speak.

002003001

See the smirk? Oh my word she is naughty. Waaaaay different than the other kids. They’d already be bawling at this point from sheer guilt!

Read more here…

11) The Story Of Paxton

I am madly in love with this little man:

1212121312141216

And there is not a day that goes by that I don’t scoop him up in my arms, bring him up to my cheek and just breath a prayer of thanksgiving for his life here on earth with us. He is a gift straight from my Heavenly Father.

189-2

Read more here….

10) What The 4th Baby Taught Me…

Every child teaches you something new. My first baby taught me patience and delight, confusion and coordination. My second taught me perseverance. My third taught me that every baby is unique, that not everything comes painted in black and white, that lovely shades of gray exist in between. My fourth taught me that life is fragile, God is huge and can do great things if you trust in Him!

 

With two children, it is easy to label them “easy” vs. “difficult” and “creative” vs. “academic.” The third and fourth babies peel away the labels, because opposites only have two sides, and suddenly there are four to cover, all with very unique qualities and traits.

The 3rd baby, my strong-willed one, taught me that even if I could strive to raise my children “perfectly,” they would still fall short and make mistakes. The 3rd baby taught me I could do everything “right,” even by my own standards, and still not have a perfect child. My third baby taught me how to re-parent all over again, with her ornery ways and temper tantrums.

The 4th baby taught me to treasure baby things and baby ways. With children two and three, babyhood fled rapidly, scooted along for convenience’s sake. 17 month apart babies, and big sis in school, tend to create a survival of the fittest mentality.

I want the babyhood of my 4th to last forever. I want to cherish his sweet breath on my neck when I snuggle him, every sigh of contentment as I feed him, every face he makes when he is nursing, that no one else will ever see, every grin and giggle, the joy I feel in my heart, when he turns at the sound of my voice, and the feeling I get, when only I can stop his incessant crying because I am mommy, and for now, I am his EVERYTHING.

But I know babyhood cannot last forever…..

Read more here…..

—————————————-

Come back tomorrow for our count down from 9 to 4!

I am having so much fun re-reading and re-living these old posts! 🙂

~T

Quick Update

Hi friends, Just a quick note, my computer crashed right before I left for my weekend away at Women’s Encounter. I came home to the sad news that the hard drive was fried and I lost EVERYTHING! Future blog posts, all my documents, all my photos. 😦 I was unable to back up my files because the cd burner wasn’t working. My computer is only a year and a half old. Dell is on my doo doo list now!!! lol 🙂 I have this weeks blogs set up, but I am unsure at this point just how many posts were lost. Please bear with me in the days to come, I am having to come over to my moms to get on the computer, so if a day comes and no post, it probably was lost in the computer crash. On to the happy news, I one day plan to share my encounter with Christ at Women’s Encounter this weekend, but for now I will tell you this…..EVERYONE needs to go to one of these weekends. It is not a typical church retreat, it is a “tear down the walls, cry it out at the foot of the cross, build you back up before we send you home, I am free in Christ” kind of weekend with INCREDIBLE surprises at every twist and turn. It is truly changed my LIFE!!!! This weekend I traded beauty for ashes, peace for my despair, and gladness was given in exchange for my mourning. The story I will one day share with you is no longer a tragedy, it is a VICTORY, it is no longer my story, IT IS HIS! Praise be to my Heavenly Father, who so lavishly poured out His love on his daughter this weekend. Love you all, thank you for your prayers…..T
PS Yes, I came home to a clean house, happy bathed kids with such fun stories of their weekend with daddy, AND homemade cookies! Dale rocks!!!!! 🙂

4 Little Fergusons: Top 20

   Guess what?!  The 4 little Ferguson’s blog turns 1 on the 20th!  Awww, my baby blog is growing up! 

  In honor of this occasion, I have compiled a countdown of the Top 20 of your favorite blog posts this week. Click on the title or “read more here” to be taken to the actual post to read it in it’s entirety.

Today we count down from 20 to 15:

20) All Aboooooard!

Today, a train arrived in my living room. Apparently, it was headed to the library….

AND Willy Wonka’s Chocolate factory.

Books & Chocolate?
Count me in!

Meet the Conductor…….

080

Read more here….

 

19) Things Heard In My Home….

A peek (a listen?) into my home……

“No, you may not have TV time until all your chores are completed.”

“Avery, quit picking your nose, it’s gross.”

“Destiny, repeating “Hey mom” 20 times to tell me something, will not get you the kind of attention you are seeking.”

“Ty, quit honking your pee-pee.”

“Paxton, why are you fussing? Here, have a binky.“

“Avery! I can tell you are still picking your nose, even if you turn your back to me.”

“Ty! Quit! Do you have to pee or something? Go potty!”

“No Avery, I do not want your “booder”, go get a Kleenex and wash your hands…..”

“Oh my goodness, who dumped out all the clean, folded laundry in here?”

“Tylan, don’t come out of the bathroom with your pants still down.“

“Paxton! Seriously, quit spitting your bink out…….Oh, its past the 3 hour mark, no wonder you are so fussy, it’s time to feed you, again!!!!“

“Tylan! Go wash your hands. We always wash after we use the bathroom.”

Read more here….

 

18) What I Would Tell Them

WHAT I WOULD TELL THEM……

If I knew what to say.

You are a miracle, straight from the hand of our Heavenly Father.

I have to love you this fiercely, so that you can feel it even when you are sitting in the Time Out Chair.

045

Or after you leave for school each day.

148

Or even while you are asleep.

016

After your childhood becomes a memory, I want you to remember my love for you….

Scan_Pic0052

Read more here…..

 

17) Afternoon Scooter Parade

It was such a beautiful day today! We decided to go visit my Grandparents after school. Tylan wanted to drive his scooter with his Great Grandpa, so we loaded up 2 scooters and a trike, and headed over…..

044

Read more here…..

 

16a) Random Things 

I love to make lists. Usually it’s a list of To Do’s, but today, it’s a list of Random Things. What can I say, it seemed like an easy blog topic for the day. 🙂

1. Being organized makes me happy.

2. I have to eat my Skittles sorted by color, and eaten from least favorite, to favorite.

3. First, yellow, orange, green, and then, red & purple can be switched depending on my mood.

4. This is precisely why I don’t get Skittles at the movies. Too dark to sort, and just too much work.

Read more here….

 

16b) The Return of Random Things

Random Things

1. We haven’t owned a microwave since ours died 6 years ago.

2. Close your mouths, it IS possible to live without the microwave.

3. We reheat using our toaster oven or the stove top.

4. The microwave is a terrible contraption that kills your food. Seriously!

5. I once saw an article written on a plant study: regular water vs. microwave water. The microwaved water plant DIED people! DIED!

6. If you touch my belly button, I will instantly gag, and quite frankly, might accidentally punch you in the face.

7. Why God would install this gag button on me, I’ll never know.

8. Dale scared me so bad once, my legs gave out from under me and my eyes cried.

9. Jerk.

Read more here…..

 

15) The 4th Trimester

Well, it’s official.

Today, I leave behind me……..the 4th Trimester of my pregnancy.

The Trimester I refer to as: ‘The Trimester OUT of the Womb.”

It’s quite a ride, that 4th Trimester; your body is recovering from labor, and you can’t help but wonder when life will ever be “normal” again.

Somebody once said it takes about 6 weeks to get back to normal after you’ve had a baby……somebody doesn’t know, that once you’re a mother, normal is history.

Read more here….

 

Come back tomorrow for Posts 14 to 10….

~T

Jalapeno Popper Dip

  So as bad as I wanted fall weather to come and stay, I am SO thankful that its held off a bit.  The last part of September, our tomato plants FINALLY, after doing awful all summer, started producing.  YAY!  We also have an abundance of jalapenos and red peppers.

004

  I can’t let all those good peppers go to waste, so I was on the look out for recipes using either.  For the Red Peppers, we’ll do Steak Fajitas or Southwest Cream Cheese Stuffed Red Peppers.  Here is what I found for the jalapenos:

Jalapeno Popper Dip

I am in LOOOVE with this dip! Tastes JUST like Jalapeno Poppers! I don’t like a lot of heat, so we seeded the jalapenos, it was perfect, even the kids could eat it.

002

Ingredients

  • 6 whole Small, Fresh Jalapenos (or 3 Lg)
  • 4 ounces, weight Chopped Green Chilies
  • 12 ounces, weight Softened Cream Cheese
  • ½ cups Sour Cream
  • ½ cups Mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons Garlic Powder
  • 2 teaspoons Salt
  • 1 cup (generous Cup) Fiesta Cheese
  • ½ cups Real Bacon Crumbles
  • ½ cups Panko Bread Crumbs
  • ½ cups Parmesan Cheese, Grated

Carefully slice and seed jalapenos, reserving some seeds to stir back in, ONLY if you like it spicy. Preheat oven to 400*.
Combine jalapenos, green chilies, cream cheese, sour cream, mayo, garlic powder, salt, chili powder, fiesta cheese and bacon bits. Spread into baking dish and top with bread crumbs and parmesan cheese. (1 did 1 ramekin and 1 mini oval baking dish, pictured above) Bake for 15 minutes, then broil for 2 minutes, watching carefully, until crumbs are just turning golden brown.
Serve warm with tortilla chips.

Enjoy!

~T

This post shared at:

This Chick Cooks

On the Menu Monday

Melt In Your Mouth Monday

Talent Show Tuesday

Tasty Tuesday

Wonka Wednesday

Tastetastic Thursday

Full Plate Thursday

Gooseberry Patch

You Know You’ve Been Pregnant A Lot When….

   This is the first time in YEARS that I am not about to find out I am pregnant.  (Right, Lord?!?!?!) 

  Seriously, out of nearly 10 years of marriage, I was pregnant 8 times in the first 8 years, most of the time towards the end of my year of nursing.  I gotta tell you, I don’t even know how NOT to be pregnant or NOT have a child hanging from my body seeking sustenance.   I am now neither pregnant, nor nursing.  Pax just quit the last feeding of the day, so in honor of this occasion I’ve compiled a list for you:

You Know You’ve Been Pregnant A LOT When……

Scan_Pic0126~You brush your teeth and are SHOCKED when you reach the back teeth without gagging and dry heaving in the sink.

Scan_Pic0130~You get into your skinny jeans and try not to get excited.  This is because in the back of your mind, the last 3 times this happened, you found out you were PG a couple of weeks later and just had to put them away again.

  {You know what happens after you pee on a stick and those 2 lines show up, don’t you? WHAMMO!!! A giant belly pops out. Bye-bye, skinny jeans.  Hello, elastic waistbands at 7 weeks.}

~After months of being horrified at the amount of hair falling out of your head, you realize once its out, it’s not coming back this go around. Good bye luscious pregnancy hormone-induced locks, Hello thinnest hair you’ve ever had. Scan_Pic0131

~You search your closet frantically for 30 minutes, looking for that cute army green tank top that you wear every SINGLE summer.  You know, the one that matches your cute camo baseball hat.  31 minutes later, you realize, “Oh yeah! That was a Maternity top.”   Oops.

~You look longingly at jalapeno poppers, hot salsa or buffalo wings and think “I can’t, I’ll be up all night with heart burn…..” totally forgetting you aren’t pregnant anymore. 

EAT UP!Scan_Pic0127

~Caffiene, same story.  “Wait a minute, I could have some caffeine if I wanted, I am not pregnant!”  Funny, after years of none, you don’t even like cappuccino anymore.

~You feel a gas bubble and almost for a millisecond think you felt your baby move.   Nope, just gas.  PU!!!

~You automatically adjust the seatbelt below your belly in case of an accident.  Yeah, pretty sure my belly fat will survive!

Scan_Pic0132~You think Saltines are a breakfast food and your stomach instantly churns as you recall years worth of carefully nibbled “breakfasts” over the kitchen sink.  Saltines: The Breakfast of {nauseous} Champions”.

~You look down and catch a glimpse of your feet and are pleasantly surprised you can see them.Scan_Pic0129

~You could lay flat on your stomach now, but after so many years of not being able too, it’s no longer even comfortable.

~You’ve taken Prenatals your entire marriage.

~You go to rest your bowl of ice cream on top of your rounded preggo belly, only to realize its not there anymore.

~No matter how hard you try, you cannot recall the last time you were not Nursing, Pregnant or BOTH!

I say, 4 and NO MORE! 

Hallelujah!

~T

Scan_Pic0128

One Dish Pork Chop Potato Casserole

  I am always drawn to recipes where there are 2 items in one pan…less dishes later!  This Pork Chop Potato Casserole recipe comes from Gooseberry Patch’s New Cookbook, I found it on my friend, Brandie’s (aka The Country Cook) site and knew I HAD to make it……..

It’s a keeper!

One Dish Pork Chop Potato Casserole

079 (2)

Ingredients

  • 8 whole Boneless Pork Chops, Seasoned As You Wish
  • 1 Tablespoon Oil
  • 1 cup Sour Cream
  • 1 can 10 Oz. Cream Of Celery Soup
  • ½ cups Milk
  • 32 ounces, weight Hash browns, Thawed
  • Salt, Pepper And Garlic Powder, To Taste
  • 1 can French Fried Onions
  • 1 cup Shredded Cheese

Preheat oven to 375*. Season both sides of pork chops with salt, pepper, whatever you like. In a large skillet, brown pork chops on both sides in hot oil. Set aside. (They will not be cooked all the way and that’s ok, it’s headed to the oven next.)
In a large bowl, combine sour cream, cream of celery soup and milk. Stir in hash browns, salt, pepper and garlic powder, then half of the French fried onions. Spread hash brown mixture in an un-greased 9×13 baking dish and sprinkle with cheese. Top with seared pork chops, arranging so that none are over top another. Bake uncovered for 45 minutes. Add remaining French Fried onions and bake 5 minutes more.
Steam some green beans while this bakes and you have your whole meal just like that! Easy and delicious!

* Do not use too thin of boneless pork chops for this, they will dry out. Bone in would also be a good option.

Happy Cooking!

~T

This post shared at:

This Chick Cooks

Wonka Wednesday

Made It On Monday

On the Menu Monday

Melt In Your Mouth Monday

Tuesday Talent Show

Tasty Tuesday

Tastetastic Thursday

Full Plate Thursday

Organized Chaos

   I had a reader email me, and ask me how I keep my house so tidy.  She looked through all our photos and couldn’t see a mess in sight. 

027126285

After I laughed and told her we definitely have our messes, I explained that the tidiness we DO manage to achieve, comes from being a totally compulsive Pillow-Fluffier, House Picker-Upper.  I can’t help myself, I tidy and fluff decorative pillows each and every time I walk past the couch.  And, as I walk from one end of the house to another, I gather handfuls of things that are out of place, because I can’t STAND a mess!  I have my kids clean up before lunch & naps, again before daddy comes home for supper, then again before bed.  They play better when the house isn’t trashed, they really do!

  I am a big believer in a place for everything and everything in its place.  The kids play closet is full of baskets, each housing a different collection of toys.  Baskets are such a great tool for tidiness.

123_edited-1

    I use canvas baskets inside our coat closet to house miscellaneous things like hats, coats, scarves, sunglasses, sunblock, & Dale’s ball caps.

005

074

077076

Thanks to a generous friend, the kids each have a locker for their school stuff.

003

There is one basket on top for “treasures” and another basket on the bottom for gloves and hats…….which we seem to have bazillions of!

078081

  I use the side of the lockers for important school notes and updates.

004

  This is how I control the grown up “treasures” that can totally make my kitchen counters look cluttered:

069

  I have this basket on the kitchen counter right when you first enter the kitchen.  This houses box tops to send to school, DVD’s to be returned, things to mail, broken necklaces waiting for repair etc.

  Dale has a basket to prevent “Dale Trails”. He’s had his basket 8 years now.  It was an old one given to me by my mom, and was the original “Organized Chaos” basket in our home.  It lives on the dryer, which is RIGHT inside the back door.

073

What is a Dale trail you ask? 

  When we were first married, I’d come in from work and LITERALLY could follow the path Dale had taken as he walked in the door.  Thus was dubbed the term: “Dale Trail”. 

 Picture with me this…..

Keys on the dryer, change on the kitchen counter, wallet on the buffet, cell phone on the living room mantel, receipts on the desk, desk chair pulled out with shoes and socks next to it, a belt on the chair in our bedroom etc. etc.…..

AHHHH!  This was NOT OK!  My tidy world was being destroyed!!!!  The basket has helped a ton, no more Dale trails, but we are working on making it IN the basket, not AROUND the basket.  🙂  Sorta like the toilet. Oh wait, that’s the “little Dale” in my life named Tylan…..never mind.

  Yes, I am a little basket-happy, but it totally has worked for us!  I even like to use baskets in my pantry, one to house onions and garlic, another for snacks and the big one for a bazillion bags of opened chips and pretzels.  (Can someone PLEASE teach my family the “finish one bag before you open another” rule?)

071072

  Hope this helps!  I got my baskets ages ago at Wal-Mart, some for $3 a piece up to $8 a piece.  Not a bad investment if you ask me, but that could just be the Pillow-Fluffier in me talkin’! 

~T

Cook Once, Eat Twice: Pot Roast Edition

I am all about leftovers and when I found two different recipes both needing a roast, I decided to Cook Once, Eat Twice and share with you guys!  Let me tell ya, this is not your momma’s Carrots and Potatoes Pot Roast dinner!

Philly Cheese Steak Pizza

(click title to print)

013

  • 1 whole Small Green Pepper, Julienned
  • 1 whole Small Red Pepper, Julienned
  • 1-¾ cup Fresh Sliced Mushrooms
  • 1 whole Small Onion, Halved And Sliced
  • 4 whole Garlic Cloves, Minced
  • 1 teaspoon Olive Oil
  • 1 whole Pizza Crust, Brushed With Olive Oil, Seasoned With Garlic Salt, And Baked According To Package Directions
  • 8 ounces, weight Container Spreadable Plain Cream Cheese
  • 1 jar Pizza Sauce, 14 Ounce (I only used half the jar)
  • 2 cups Shredded Provolone, Divided Use
  • 1 cup Shredded Colby-jack Cheese
  • ½ cups Pickled Banana Pepper Rings
  • ¼ cups Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • ½ teaspoons Oregano
  • 1 can Beef Broth (14 Ounce Can)
  • 1 whole 2.5 pound Pot Roast, Divided

Slow cook pot roast with salt, pepper and beef broth 8-10 hours on low. Shred.

Take 1 1/2 cups meat, drained, from the crock pot, putting the rest away for tomorrow’s dinner, Texas Cowboy Pie.

001 

In a large skillet, saute the peppers, mushrooms, onions and garlic in 1 teaspoon of oil until tender.

Season pizza crust with garlic salt to taste. Bake according to package directions.  My favorite pizza crust is the recipe on the back of the Fleishman’s Pizza Yeast packet.  We do a big Pampered Chef bar pan size pizza, but circle would be great too. 

  Once crust is seasoned and baked, spread crust with a thin layer of cream cheese, then pizza sauce.  Sprinkle with 1 cup provolone cheese.

Top with pepper mixture, shredded beef, pepper rings, and remaining provolone cheese and Colby jack shreds.

Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and oregano.

Bake for 10-12 minutes at 450F.

Enjoy your delicious dinner!

  Now, with your leftover pot roast you can make another meal:

Texas Cowboy Pie

115

Ingredients

  • 3 whole Large Potatoes, Cooked And Mashed
  • Milk, Sour Cream, Butter, To Taste, For Mashed Potatoes
  • 4 Tablespoons Of Your Favorite BBQ Sauce
  • Leftover Pot Roast
  • 2 cups Shredded Cheese
  • Salt And Pepper, to taste

Peel and cube potatoes in uniform sized cubes. Cover potatoes in water and boil, uncovered, until soft. Drain liquid, reserving one cup of the liquid. Mash potatoes until no lumps are left, adding potato liquid as necessary to reach your desired consistency. Stir in sour cream, butter and/or milk as well as salt and pepper, to taste. Spread warm potatoes in the bottom of an 9×9 pan.

Mix BBQ sauce with leftover shredded beef roast and layer on top of potatoes. Top with cheese and bake for 15 minutes at 350F.

This is a delicious way to use leftover pot roast!

There you have it! Cook once, Eat twice…gotta love it!  🙂

  Hope you enjoy both of these recipes like we did….

~T

Shared with:

On the Menu Monday

This Chick Cooks

Made It On Monday

Wonka Wednesday

Melt In Your Mouth Monday

Tuesday Talent Show

Vintage Cookery

Putting the Breakfast in Bed & Breakfast

  It’s Breakfast time!  I have 2 really great recipes to share with you this morning. 

  This is light, fluffy, cheesy and EASY!

 (Note: most of us here in the Ferguson household, don’t care for cottage cheese, but you won’t even know it’s in here!! Just makes this casserole super moist!!!!)

Incredible Edible Egg Casserole

(click title to print)

015

Ingredients

  • 10 whole Eggs, Whipped
  • ½ cups Butter, Melted
  • ½ teaspoons Salt
  • ½ cups Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 4 cups Monterey Jack Cheese, Shredded (do Not Substitute)
  • 16 ounces, weight Cottage Cheese
  • 1 package (3 Oz. Package Or Around 3/4 Cup) Real Bacon Bits
  • 4 ounces, weight Chopped Green Chilies

Preheat your oven to 350F.

In a bowl, combine the eggs, butter, flour, salt and baking powder. Mix well.

Slowly stir in the cheese, cottage cheese, bacon bits and green chilies. Bake in a greased 9×13 pan for 35-40 minutes. Enjoy!

I told you it was easy!

 Ben%20and%20Mary-2  This next recipe comes from a new 4 little Fergusons reader, Mary who runs a B & B in Fayette, Alabama.  Sweet Mary read this blog from stem to stern the day she found us.  I had to “meet” this amazing lady, so I headed over to her website:

IMAG020

http://www.columbusstreetinn.com/

  She and her hubby have a beautiful home that they open up to guests, “The Columbus Street Inn”, and her breakfast menu sounds amazing! (You know if they run a Bed and Breakfast, her breakfast recipes HAVE to be delicious, or they’d just call it a Bed!)  Anyhow, she shared this recipe with me, and it did not disappoint!

WOW!

Mansion House Peaches & Cream French Toast Casserole with Yogurt Sauce

(Click title to print)

038

Ingredients

  • French Toast Casserole:
  • 6 whole Croissants (Large, Light Type Found In The Bakery)
  • 8 ounces, weight Cream Cheese
  • 2 cups Fresh Peaches, Sliced
  • 1 cup Brown Sugar
  • ½ cups Sweet Cream Butter
  • 2 Tablespoons Corn Syrup
  • 12 whole Eggs
  • 1-½ cup 1/2 & 1/2
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla
  • Yogurt Cream Sauce:
  • 1 cup Vanilla Yogurt
  • 4 ounces, weight Cool Whip
  • A Dash Or Two Of Nutmeg And Cinnamon
  • Syrup

Step One:
Grease 9×13 or larger pan.
Melt brown sugar, butter, corn syrup until bubbly.
Pour entire mixture into the pan.

Step Two:
Spread sliced peaches over the caramel syrup.
Break the croissants into pieces and place over the peaches.
Cut cream cheese into little pieces and scatter throughout the breaks (in little pillow-like puffs)

Step Three:
Mix the eggs, milk and vanilla.
Pour over the bread and cover.
Refrigerate overnight.

Step Four:
Place into a cold oven and set it to 350 degrees for 45 minutes.
You can cover if top is getting too brown.
When it is nearly finished it will begin to puff up and you will see the caramel bubbling up.

Step Five:
Serve with Yogurt Cream Sauce and hot maple syrup.

Thanks Mary, for the AM-AAAAZING recipe!

Happy Cooking everyone!  🙂

~T

This post shared at:

This Chick Cooks

Wonka Wednesday

Made It On Monday

Mom’s Crazy Cooking