Thursday, December 31, 2009

Thursday Thirteen: Resolutions

I was thinking on the way to work this morning (Yes, I had to work. I know, ridiculous.  I can give you my boss's number if you'd like to call him and complain.) that everyone always says how they'll give up smoking, or give up chocolate, or will lose weight or whatever their big thing is for the year.  And most of them don't ever stick with it.  I wanted to make my resolutions ones that I would have a good chance of sticking with.  So here are my 13 New Year's Resolutions.

1. I resolve to NOT give up any of the few vices that I have.  Actually, I should drink more wine; add to that vice.

2. To read more books than I did in '09 (which may be hard because I read a lot of books this year).

3. To expound on that, I want to will finish this series.

4. To become credit card debt free (and I'm almost there!).

5. To run another 5k... okay make that two.

6. To go on our first vacation as a family.
7. To make it down to Oklahoma to visit these folks.
8. To have a winning season with my volleyball team.
9. To not waste money on seasonal fads that probably aren't that cute anyway.
10. To not count calories as well as not deny myself scrumptious desserts and other goodies.  Moderation is what it's all about.
11. To do more nice things for random strangers. 
12. To slow down and enjoy life's small moments, not just the large ones.

13. To learn how to operate our camcorder and actually use it. 

Now you know my resolutions, tell me yours... and don't forget to take the poll I have up!  Poll's are fun.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Voting for a Cause!

A very talented friend of mine is having a photography blog challenge.  It's really quite simple... cast your vote for your favorite child/baby image to be featured on the updated Imaginate Photography site for 2010.. and ALL votes will generate a $1 donation to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.  Pretty cool, right? 

And while you are there, check out all her pictures... if you dig deep enough you might even see Monkey!

Monday, December 28, 2009

A Monkey for Monkey

We had a great Christmas and I hope all of you out there did as well.  I didn't expect Monkey to actually care at all about her presents, but she did!  She actually played with the toys more than the wrapping paper and boxes. 

Her favorite toy of all was a stuffed monkey from her Great Grandmother on my Dad's side.  She held on to it all night and just loved it.  The really sweet thing about it was that my Grandpa gave it to my Grandma for Valentine's Day years ago. 

Monkey has never gotten to meet her Great Grandpa.  He passed away almost 9 years ago now.  And while it saddens me that she'll never get to know him, I know he is watching over us.

Merry Christmas Grandpa, we miss you and love you!   

Friday, December 25, 2009

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Raccoons and Heirlooms

This isn't just any old crib.  It's a very special and very old crib. 
My dad slept in this as a baby as well as my brother and sisters.  My Grandmother has passed it throughout our family so many of my cousins have slept in it as well.  Now Monkey has it.  It's not her every day crib that she uses, but she has slept in it just to carry on the tradition.
Look! The little girl on it is holding a raccoon! I love that little raccoon. Have I mentioned that as kids we had pets raccoons?  I have a certain affinity for them.  Cute little buggers.

What items has your family passed on through the generations?  Tell me about them or better yet, send me a picture of it.  I'll feature all of them in a post at the first of the year.  Come on... play along!

** I forgot to say where to send the picture, oopsie!  Send away to  Look forward to seeing what you all have!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009


I need help.

I have three family dinners left for Christmas and I can't decide for the life of me what I should make for each one. One meal is more of snacks and appetizers and the other two are full out meals. I normally like to make two dishes for each one. Any suggestions?

Right now I'm thinking of doing a crescent wrapped brie and wild rice corn casserole. That's it. I need more ideas. HELP!

Monday, December 21, 2009

This Just In: Good Actions Are Bad. Huh??

According to the Department of Agriculture, more than 50 million people, including one in four children, struggled to find enough to eat last year -- the largest number since the federal government began tracking the problem.  Some hunters in Maryland want to lower those numbers and are donating their venison to organizations that help feed the hungry.  So far they have delivered nearly half a million meals to people in the last two years. 

Instead of commending these people for their generosity, they are getting attacked by PETA and HSUS.  Ridiculous but not surprising to most of you, I'm sure. 

"I find it offensive that people would try to justify immoral behavior by claiming that something good comes out of it," said Bruce Friedrich, a spokesman for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals. "They can't defend ruthlessly blowing away animals for fun, so they come up with these ancillary benefits."

You know what I find offensive Mr. Friedrich?  If these good citizens were just ruthlessly blowing away animals for fun, then they wouldn't be taking the time, or spending the money to get them butchered and then donating the meat to organizations that HELP people.  The fact that you would rather let people starve than have them eat tasty and nutritious venison is offensive to me. 

How sad is it that PETA and the Humane Society of the United States, who have combined resources in the neighborhood of one-quarter of a billion dollars, would rather complain about deer hunting than help out hungry families? While farmers, ranchers and hunters work to help feed the families in their communities, PETA and HSUS work to stop their efforts. Why Bruce Friedrich and Wayne Pacelle would let their organizations actively work towards causing more people to go hungry is beyond belief.  That quarter of a billion dollars could feed so many hungry people.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Flashback Friday

This is my favorite picture of all time.  It's of my grandparents on my Mom's side and one of my uncles.  I can't explain why I love this picture so much, but I do.  It captures a moment in time that I wish I could've been a part of. 
I want to know a few things... like who took the picture?

Is Grandma searching for something or just taking a walk to stretch her legs after a long ride?

What were Grandpa and Uncle discussing?  Were they having a serious talk?  Or making fun of Grandma's shoes?
But most of all I want to know if Grandpa was really as cool as James Dean, or did he just look like it here?

I think I'm going to have to break this photo out at Christmas and ask them.  I need the answers!

Side note: Smoking is not really cool, kids. Unless the year is 1950 and you are perched on a motorcycle like so. Then yes, it is very cool.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Before He (Ch)Eats

So Carrie Underwood is now a hero, huh? All because she donated $200,000 to the Human Society of the United States (HSUS), the richest animal rights organization in the world.

HSUS spends 95% of its budget for travel and lobbying against family farmers and ranchers. Carrie Underwood may be a small town girl from Oklahoma and play country music, but she forgot long ago what being a country girl is all about.

Just imagine how many other great charities could have benefitted from that amount of money. Especially at Christmas time. Instead she throws it away on a group that cares more about tarnishing the good names of farmers and ranchers everywhere than they do on “helping” any animal.

Growing up on a farm myself and now working in the ag industry, I don’t understand how she can turn her back on her own agriculture-based state. I will admit, I don’t hold a candle to her when it comes to singing; she’s got a great voice. But I will stand up for my family and the generations of farmers out there instead of following along with what is hip or cool at the moment. I have a hard time listening to her music when I know what she is supporting.

You may recall an incident back in 2006 when Underwood performed at the FFA National Convention. A protest of her performance was carried out by more than 500 young FFA members. This was done by the same people that her music is targeted towards, and while they may like her voice and her music, they were not going to stand for her anti-livestock affiliations. Especially at a convention based on agriculture.

I am very proud of those kids who walked out that day and while I know one protest won’t change Underwood’s beliefs, or the world, it’s important for those who believe in agriculture to stand up and be counted, not counted out.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Jim Ryan Declares War on Law-Abiding Illinois Gun Owners

In an Associated Press wire story released on December 12th, Republican gubernatorial candidate Jim Ryan pledged to sign a ban on “Assault Weapons” and promised to veto any “Concealed Carry” legislation that reaches his desk.

In making these pronouncements, Ryan was very clear that he would wholeheartedly support legislation that would result in the ban and confiscation of most of the guns in your safe. With that ban, you would have two choices – either surrender your firearms to the police, or they will be kicking down your door to take them. Ryan could not have made the point any clearer.

Ryan was equally clear about your right to defend yourself. By pledging to veto concealed carry legislation, he is saying that he would rather see you unarmed, being beaten and murdered by a criminal than to see you with a gun in your hand defending your right to life.  Ryan also has a message for your wife, mother, daughter or girlfriend. That message is that he would rather see her laying dead in an alley after being raped and beaten than to see her with a gun in her hand. Ryan could not have made the point any clearer.

Just as he did in the 2002 gubernatorial race, Jim Ryan has proven himself to be cut from the same cloth as Chicago Democrats such as Richie Daley, Barack Obama, and Rod Blagojevich.

Any gun owner who would vote for Jim Ryan has to be out of his or her mind.

Please tell all your gun owning friends and make a promise to yourself, right now, that you will not let guys like Jim Ryan push you around.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Smothered Ranch Chicken and Taters

I'm hungry. 

I had a an apple for breakfast and it just didn't satisfy me for long.  So I'm waiting for the clock to keep turning so I can go meet a wonderful friend for lunch.  Josh doesn't ever read my blog, actually I doubt he even knows that I have one.  So I can say all sorts of terrible things about him and he'd never even know, but I won't. 

This time.

Instead, since I'm so hungry I'll share a recipe that I made not long ago.  It wasn't the prettiest food on the plate, but my oh my it was yummy.  Classic feel good comfort food.  I called it Smothered Ranch Chicken and Taters, you can call it whatever you wish.
You'll need:
4 chicken breasts
6 tablespoons spicy ranch dressing
1 medium onion
1 small can of mushrooms
1 clove garlic
2 tablespoons butter
Dash of Worcestershire sauce
Splash of beer
4 large potatoes
4 slices of bacon
½ a bag of Monterey jack cheese
Salt, pepper and seasoning salt

It's really quite easy to make, a little time consuming, but easy.  Just follow these steps:

Marinate chicken in dressing for a few hours, the longer the better.
Preheat oven to 400F.
Sauté chopped onion, garlic and mushrooms in butter over low heat. Add a few dashes of Worcestershire and seasoning salt and a splash or two of beer.
While mushrooms are sautéing, chop potatoes. Place in dish and microwave for 4-5 minutes.
Pour a little EVOO over potatoes, salt and pepper and toss to coat.
Sauté chicken on each side for 1 to 2 minutes, do not cook through, just enough to brown up.
Place the chicken on top of the potatoes.
Drizzle spicy ranch dressing on top of chicken and potatoes.
Smother chicken with mushroom topping.
Bake for 20 minutes.
Sprinkle cheese on top and bake for another 20 minutes.
While the chicken is baking, fry up the bacon.
Add bacon and bake for another 5 minutes.

**I would normally use fresh mushrooms but didn’t have any on hand; canned work just fine, but I would recommend fresh.

**Chopped scallions would be a good garnish as well, but I didn’t have any. Try it! 
And now I'm even hungrier than I was before I wrote this.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Really, 26 Years Already?

Today is my baby sister's birthday.  It's hard to believe that she is 26 years old, it just doesn't seem possible.  I feel like it was just a few years ago that we were little kids playing together on the farm.  We were pretty much inseperable and that hasn't changed. 
But I just can't believe that this cute little girl is all grown up.  She isn't that cute little kid anymore.  Instead she's grown up to be a beautiful woman. Whoa, now that's strange.  I don't think I've ever called her a woman before.  She's still just a kid in my mind.  But she is... a woman that is. 

This was a big year for her, she became an aunt for the second time....

But even bigger than that... she got married.  How can my baby sister be old enough to get married?  I can't reconcile that in my mind.  But she did, and she looked gorgeous.

So HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my stunning baby sister who's no longer a baby!
I love you Bonnie hope you have a wonderful day!

**Side Note:  I did not take the wedding pictures, I am not that talented.  If you like them though you can check out the real photographer at  She has talent. 

Friday, December 11, 2009

Flashback Friday

Here is a picture of me with my siblings...  we were close even back then. 
Although I do look a little devious.  Like I may be plotting something?
Okay, so maybe I was happy to finally have someone younger than me that could take the brunt of my older siblings torment.  And as luck would have it, that meant that I had someone smaller than me that I could pick on!  But I would never do that, no siree, not me. 

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Thursday Giveaway!

Maybe last weeks cookbook and shirt just weren't up your alley.  I'm willing to bet money this week's giveaway WILL be up your alley.  Seriously who's alley couldn't use a brand spanking new computer??  And not just any computer, but an HP TouchSmart!

There are 5 different bloggers giving one away.  That's right, you have 5 different chances to win one and it's couldn't be any easier! Just go to these sites and leave a comment answering their questions:

Kelly's Reviews
Totally Together Reviews
NieNie Dialogues

What are you waiting for.. go, GO!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Like Mother Like Daughter?

I get asked all the time who I think Monkey looks like, me or the Hubster.  I can't tell and he can't either, all we know is she's stinking cute.

I found a picture of me from the hospital though when I was born and we could definately see a resemblance... what do you think?

Monday, December 7, 2009

Fighting for Human Rights

I saw a speaker last week addressing the motives of the HSUS, and he used this video in his presentation. Pretty funny, no?

Friday, December 4, 2009

Flashback Friday

An oldie but a goodie... My father-in-law holding my husband as a newborn.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Thursday Giveaway!

Okay so I'm not the one giving something away, but it's still a giveaway! 

You all know how much I love to cook and here is a cookbook by a stay-at-home ranch mom whose food is to die for.  I don't have a copy yet, but I want one.
AND a t-shirt as well! 

What more could you ask for, right? 

All you have to do is go to The Provident Woman website and enter to win!

One stipulation though... if you win you must give them to me.  Hahaha... only kidding... well maybe half kidding. 

If you'd like to check out some of the recipes from this cookbook just go over to The Pioneer Woman and have a peek!  It's some good food, I promise!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

People bEing hypocriTical A-holes

I could write a 10 page paper on why I do not like PETA. I won’t though. Why? Because I have more pressing things to do.

Like laundry for instance. Dirty laundry is kind of similar to PETA, right?

Instead of me writing my feelings for PETA down, I’ll just share with you some of their dirty laundry.

Quote by Ingrid Newkirk, President and Co-Founder of PETA

PETA has funneled over $100,000 to criminals convicted of destroying medical research and firebombing scientific laboratories in the name of "animal liberation."

Official government records show that People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has killed more than 12,000 animals since 1998. PETA employees now face felony animal-cruelty charges for killing puppies and kittens - and throwing them in a dumpster. This news photo shows police preparing to bury a puppy that PETA's "ethical" employees left to rot in the trash.

Quote by Ingrid Newkirk, PETA Co-Founder, on her desire for a USA hoof-and-mouth epidemic.

Two "comics" they distribute to children:
Your Mommy Kills Animals
Your Daddy Kills Animals

Okay, so maybe I will say a few things….

Did you know that PETA kills animals?  And a lot of them at that? From July 1998 through December 2008, they killed over 21,000 dogs, cats, and other "companion animals." That's more than five defenseless creatures every day. PETA has a walk-in freezer to store the dead bodies, and contracts with a Virginia Beach company to cremate them.

They even were able to write-off the $9,370 giant walk-in freezer on their 2002 federal income-tax return! And during a 2007 criminal trial, a PETA manager testifying under oath confirmed the obvious – that the group uses the appliance to store the bodies of it's victims. The very same victims they are lobbying to protect!

When PETA president Ingrid Newkirk was asked about this, she complained that actually taking care of the animals costs more than killing them!

Funny - farmers care for their animals with 100 times more respect and love than PETA does for theirs. And they say farmers aren’t doing right by the animals.

I beg to disagree, Ms. Newkirk.

And using horrendous comic books to turn children against their parents "for the sake of the animals"?  I find it abhorrent.  Who are you to scare innocent children into becoming vegetarians?  At least when they go fishing with Daddy they are spending quality family time and most likely eating their catch of the day.  They make use of the animals they killed.  What about you?  Killing thousands of animals because it's cheaper and easier than finding homes for them?  I find YOU abhorrent Ms. Newkirk.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Chocolate Covered Cherry Cookies

I was looking for something different to make for Thanksgiving and ran across these Chocolate Cherry Cupcakes.  While they look scrumptious, I’m not a huge chocolate fan and thought it would be too much for me. I also thought of the peanut butter kiss cookies that Mom makes so well, you know the ones that look like this:

I thought maybe I could combine the two ideas into something I call Chocolate Covered Cherry Cookies.

Now let me warn you, they didn’t turn out as pretty as I had intended, but they taste delicious and you won’t be able to eat just one!

The ingredients that you’ll need are as follows:

Cookie Batter
2 ¼ cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2 sticks butter, softened
¾ cup sugar
¾ cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

2 jars of maraschino cherries, drained
1 tablespoon of cherry juice
1 1/2 cups chocolate chips
½ cup sweetened condensed milk

Preheat oven to 375F.

Combine flour, baking soda and salt in small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in large mixer bowl until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in chocolate chips.

Shape into 1-inch balls and drop onto ungreased baking sheets. Press down onto center of the dough with your thumb.

Place a cherry into the center indention of each cookie.

In a small saucepan, combine chocolate chips and sweetened condensed milk. Heat over low until chocolate is melted. Stir in 1 tablespoon cherry juice.

Spoon about 1 teaspoon of the topping over each cherry, spreading to cover the cherry. If the frosting seems too thick add a little more cherry juice.

Bake for 10 to 11 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on baking sheets for 2 minutes; remove to wire racks to cool completely.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thursday Thirteen: Thanks, 2nd Edition

I couldn’t list everything I was thankful for in my previous Thanks post, so I thought I’d do another one.
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

1. Mashed potatoes, with lots of butter and white gravy.

2. FX Network, and their great shows. Nip/Tuck, Rescue Me, Sons of Anarchy…

3. Water, ice cold water.

4. Our new gun safe. Monkey isn’t walking around yet, but she will be before we know it and a secure place to put all our firearms is necessary. The old one just wasn’t big enough.

5. Subway Flat Bread. It is so good, try it!
6. The Odd Thomas books by Dean Koontz. They aren’t his normal style of writing, but I like them. I will actually go as far as to say I like them better than his other books.

7. On the topic of books… The Old Book Barn in Forsyth, IL. You can trade your old books in for new books there and I love it.

8. Wine. A nice bottle of wine is nice. And I’ll admit it, I even like cheap wine… Boone’s Farm baby.

9. Email. It’s not always easy keeping in touch with friends/family that I don’t see on a daily basis and email makes that possible.

10. Gorgeous fall weather. Nothing beats the weather when a pair of jeans and a sweatshirt is sufficient. Add sitting around a campfire with friends and you’ve got a perfect night.

11. My health. I don’t get sick very often and I certainly am grateful for that. Being sick is no fun.

12. Grandparents. Not only are they wonderful of course, but they also make great babysitters.

13. Long weekends!  Enjoy yours!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Today my baby is 7 months old AND she sprouted her first tooth on Monday!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Shakin' Up the Thanksgiving Feast

Thanksgiving is this week, yaaaayyy!!  I love spending time with my family, eating all the great food and gettng a nice long weekend!

I need some help though.  I can't decide what food to make.... we always have the traditional Thanksgiving fare, but I like to mix it up as well and have a few dishes that aren't traditional holiday food.  I've got a few ideas up my sleeve, but I'd like your input as well before I go off to the store with my shopping list in hand.

So tell me.... what non-traditional holiday food do you serve?  Or what would you like to have served to you?

Friday, November 20, 2009

Bring Home That Bacon!... or Venison, Whatever.

I could hear the shots ring out this morning… shotgun season is upon us! Mmm… I can just taste the venison already.

I normally like to take the day off work to go with Hubby, but I have some major work events next week that I need to prepare for so it just wasn’t going to happen today. Maybe tomorrow we can hit up the ole Love Shack.

Just what is the Love Shack you ask? Well it’s set way back in the middle of a field, just a funky old shack; it’s a little old place where we can get together… and hunt of course!

I like using the Shack instead of a tree stand because there’s a heater in it and a nice cozy lawn chair that I can snuggle up in and read a book during the down times. I know, I know… it’s the sissy way to hunt, but I don’t care. I like it and I’m sticking to my guns.

Hubs still went out this morning without me and I’m really hoping he comes home with a nice deer. But what’s more important is that he comes home safe and sound.

The Department of Natural Resources says while deer hunting is part of our outdoor heritage, they want to encourage all hunters heading to the field this weekend to make safety a first priority. The number one cause of hunting accidents in Illinois is falling from a tree stand. Last year in Illinois, there were 38 reported hunting accidents; 30 were the result of tree stand falls and five of guys died. So far during 2009, there have been 13 reported hunting accidents in Illinois, of which six have involved falls from tree stands. DNR reminds hunters to check ladder stands to make sure they’re secure, use a haul line to raise an unloaded gun or bow into the stand, and for cryin’ out loud, weaer a safety harness.

Here's a good video on safety that was featured on Farmweek last year.

Since my guy won’t be in a deer stand his risk is significantly lower, but there are others out there that need to take precaution and remember to always wear your orange!

Happy hunting and enjoy that venison!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Big Butt Mac N Cheese

Recently Laura, a friend of mine from high school, was looking for the perfect macaroni and cheese recipe. She requested various recipes from friends, so she was able to cook a different one for her family every night for an entire week.

Yes, even after all of that cheesy goodness she is still as skinny as ever.

Say it with me now, I know you want to… Brat.

Not the ‘B’ word you were going to use, was it? Keepin it family friendly here people, come on!

The one I gave her was used on Day 4 and she said it was the best so far. I’m not sure which recipe her family ended up liking the best at the end of the week though, so unfortunately I can’t take the crown for the best mac n cheese overall.

Since they gobbled mine up without having any leftovers she gave it a new name as well…. Big Butt Mac n Cheese!

I don’t have an actual recipe for it as I just threw some stuff together one day and alter it every time. But here are the basics for what you’ll need for my favorite Grilled Macaroni and Cheese…

2 cups macaroni
1 can cheese soup
1 can milk
A cup or two of grated cheese, any flavor you’d like
2 or 3 tablespoons of pico de gallo (depending on how spicy you like it)
Italian seasoned bread crumbs
Salt & Pepper to taste
Dash or two of Chipotle Tabasco sauce

What to do:
Boil macaroni; while it’s boiling heat up the soup and milk in a sauce pan and melt the cheese.
Mix together with drained macaroni.
Add pico de gallo and Tabasco sauce.
Put the mixture in a greased grill-safe pan.
Top with bread crumbs and then pats of butter.
Bake on grill for 30-40 minutes or until bubbly. I really like it when the sides get a little crispy, but you do whatever your taste buds desire!

This can also be done in the oven, but let me tell you, the grill is the way to go if you can. It gets this awesome smoky flavor and perfect crispness on the edges. Mmmm… I’m salivating right now thinking about it.

Damn this weather and ever-present rain! I need one more sunny day so I can use the grill!

Enjoy my Big Butt Friends!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

This makes my heart melt....

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Who Put That Food on Your Table Anyway?

I recently over heard some people talking about “big” farmers and how easy they have it, yet when the weather isn’t cooperating their whole system derails and the average consumer pays for it. They went on to say that organic farming is a much better method. I was this close to interrupting their conversation and setting them straight, but I refrained as I didn’t know them from Adam.

What I would’ve told them is that yes, farmers are for sure hindered by this weather we are having and are definately happier when not only the weather goes as we would like, but when the markets and fuel prices do as well. But just because something doesn’t go as planned for them, they don’t give up. Farmers are fighters and work with the conditions that are given to them.

This has been the wettest and slowest year for harvest in 40 years. But despite this, we are looking at having record harvest numbers. Is that not amazing? Seriously. How many companies or organizations out there can say they are having their worst year in 4 decades yet are still producing record amounts of their product or service?

There are naysayers out there that think the way we farm should be changed, that we shouldn’t use pesticides or biotechnology in any way. Without these advances we wouldn’t be able to produce enough to feed the world. So which do you want… the “old fashioned” way of farming and letting people starve? Or using the technology we have and feeding the world? It seems like an easy decision to me.

Thanksgiving is next week and thanks to farmers we will have a table full of goodies to help us celebrate. So instead of standing in line at the grocery store and complaining about what farmers do, why don't we all take a step back, look at how fortunate we are for their efforts, and then go thank a farmer for what they do.

Wish I would've taken the five minutes to say that.

Monday, November 16, 2009

The Books with Bite

I’m an avid reader. I love reading the paper, magazines, online articles, but mostly I love books. All sorts of books spanning over many genres.

I’m in the middle of a series now that is just plain fun. There’s not a whole lot of thinking that needs to go into it, it’s just for the sheer enjoyment of reading and let's be honest, sometimes I just want a book that doesn't make me think a lot when I'm reading it.  And this one does it for me.  It's the Sookie Stackhouse series by Charlaine Harris. 

Heard of Sookie?  She’s a pretty popular chick having her own hit show on HBO as well.  I don't get HBO so I had never heard of her, but my sister turned me on to her books and I'm glad she did!  There are nine of them so far and I'm on the fourth one right now. 

I know the covers look a little childlike, but they aren't.  Oh no sir, not at all.  Remember, they did turn these books into an HBO series!

So if you are looking for a new obsession, this series comes with a big fat recommendation. And really, what I've seen of the show is excellent as well. But, um, make sure your kiddies are safely tucked away in bed before you watch.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Alright Guy

A few days ago I went to a concert given by my second most favorite singer of all time, GARY ALLAN!  He is only runner up to Chris Ledoux and since Chris is deceased, Gary has the number one spot for living artists.

I'll admit it, I love him.  My husband knows it and he's accepted it.  He has the most amazing voice, I could listen to him sing all day long.  Which actually I've been listening to his cd's for the past three weeks in anticipation of the show and I'm still not tired of him!

We had awesome seats and I was able to snap some pretty good photos... here are a couple:

I can't forget the guitar player in his very hip kilt...

But this one, this one is my favorite picture of the night...

If for some reason you aren't a fan of Gary's already, I highly suggest you check out some of his music.  He's soulful, plays a mean guitar and can cut right to your heart.  There's a long backstory of sorrow for him, losing his wife to suicide, and knowing that just makes his music that much deeper.  Of course, great musicians have captured intense emotions before without actually living them. But for me as a listener and huge fan, I cannot believe the emotions he puts out in his music aren't authentic and rooted in a deep, personal tragedy.  Because of this, it only makes me love him more.  I can't wait for the next cd to be released!