Sunday, December 21, 2008

Making Bread - #1 - Banana Nut Bread

This bread is my first attempt at bread other than friendship bread. I have not tasted it yet because it is still in the oven but it does smell wonderful. I decided to make this one first because BJ said I never make bread that he likes... He is a lie because he like the Friendship Bread... So I asked him what kind of bread he wanted and he said Banana Nut...

Banana Nut Bread
This is a moist, buttery banana bread loaded with banana flavor.
Cook Time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
1 cup butter or margarine
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons soda
4 cups flour
6 large bananas, very ripe, mashed
1 cup finely chopped pecans

Preparation:Cream together butter and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition. Sift dry ingredients together; add to creamed mixture. Stir in bananas and chopped pecans.

Pour banana nut bread batter into 2 well-greased loaf pans; bake at 325° for about 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. This banana nut bread recipe makes 2 loaves. This can also make 24 muffins that you will need to bake for 35 minutes.

Here is the website where I found the recipe...

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Karen Kingsbury's Series Redemption

One of the things on my list is to read a Karen Kingsbury series. As I started looking through her books I relized I had read more of her books then I thought thanks to my days working at Lifeway.

I am a big fan of series. I like to read a book that draws me into the next book and keeps up with the life of the characters in the previous book.

Karen Kingsbury does a wonderful job of this in her books. She has several series out that actually build off of each other so not only do you have several books within the series you also have several series that go together. I guess you could say her 4-5 book series are mini-series in a big picture!

I thought I would start at the beginning with the Redemption Series that looks at the life of the Baxter family.

So last Wednesday I headed to the library. I first called Rachel to see if she had any of these books and she said this is probably the only ones she does not own because they were out while she was working at Lifeway and read them as part of our reading privledges there.

I went ahead and got Redemption and Remember and have them for the next few weeks. If I finish those before we head to Indiana for our Christmas trip I will get the next few books and if I haven't finished them I will renew them and keep reading.

So far in Redemption I have gotten into it. It is hard to make time for reading because when I actually like a book I don't want to sit it down which interfers with other needs of the house.

Redemption starts out in Bloomington, Indiana which is where BJ and I will be in less then a month so it has caught my attention.

I will let you know how it turns out.

Redemption:Kari Baxter Jacobs is furious, hurt, and confused. Her husband, Tim, a respected professor of journalism, is having an affair with a student. Stunned, Kari returns home to the Baxter family to sort things out. But when an old flame shows up, she is more confused than ever.

Remember:Ashley Baxter has locked up her heart, convinced that no one — including God - could love her. Four unlikely people - Alzheimer's patients - find the cracks in Ashley's heart and slowly help her remember.

Return:Luke, golden boy and the Baxter family's only son, has walked away from everything that mattered most to him: his faith, his family, and Reagan, his only love. Devastated by the events of September 11, 2001, Luke decides that life is random, faith a fraud, and God a fantasy.

Rejoice:Brooke and Peter are struggling in their marriage when they are faced with the single worst moment ever. What was supposed to be a pool party for their two daughters and a handful of children ends in disaster. As three-year-old Hayley fights for her life, the Baxter family draws together, not even sure how to pray.

Reunion:Plans are being made for a family reunion. Nearly all the adult Baxter children have a reason to celebrate - except one. As the preparations get under way, a deadly diagnosis sends shock waves through the Baxter family and threatens to tear them apart.

November Bookstore Trip

The weekend before Thanksgiving BJ and I went shopping with mom and dad on several errands. We went for a few reasons... 1)they were looking for a birthday present for D'Lynn and 2) they were going to Lifeway!!!

I love Lifeway! Yes I know part of that is because I worked there but I also like it this time of year when they have all the Christmas stuff out and the Nativities out.

I also thought this would be a good time to get my monthly visit to a bookstore in.

While I was there I found they carried the "Brides" series in the bargain section.

I bought Texas Brides: The Rancher and the Runaway Bride / The Bluest Eyes in Texas on one of my first visit to the new Barnes and Nobles when Suzanne and I met to discuss my wedding cake.
I really enjoyed this book so I thought I would get another one to read and since they were in the bargain section at Lifeway (I think it was 2.99) I could not pass it up.
So I bought Carolina Carpenter Brides : Four Couples Find Tools for Building Romance in a Home Improvement Store. I going to start reading it but then decided I would start a different book instead.
Another month gone and another fun trip to a book store!

Learning lessons about blogging

As part of the 101 things is to work on my blogging skills.

With the help of Ashely I am going to attemp to work on my blogging. Since I knew Ashley knew how to make a line strike through words she could give some pointers. She directed me to google!

I am a fan of google and don't know why I did not think about using it before now. So after a little research I have the codes to strike through words.

So I can now take....

Learn how to draw a line through words off the list.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

New Recipe # 1

While we were on our honeymoon we stayed at a Plantation Bed & Breakfast which meant we had a wonderful plantation style breakfast every morning. And believe me when I say these pictures do not do the breakfast justice!

This is our breakfast from the second morning. This was a egg omelet, bacon, makes pear, and hash brown casserole. We also got fruit to start our breakfast out.

This is our breakfast from the first morning. We had fruit, followed by a baked peach, egg casserole, bacon, and the surprisingly hot sausage. (The sausage was coated in brown sugar so you did not realize how hot the sausage really was until you got into it.)

We also had homemade biscuits every morning. And I want a table setting like this one day. When I have my house with the columns!

I also forgot to mention we were brought coffee each morning. The first morning we drank it on the balcony and the second morning we had it in our room.
Anyways, Moving on to the recipe.
Well I tried a new recipe. It was not for the main course but it was still good. I got this recipe from Peggy who made our breakfast each morning at Rosswood Plantation.
Hashbrown Casserole
1 stick butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
2 cups sour cream
1 10 3/4 oz can cream of chicken soup
1 32oz hash brown potatoes (this is what makes the casserole)
These are the hashbrowns you have to get. I think it comes in a 28 oz bag but it is close enough. It has onions and peppers mixed in with it.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In pan melt butter. Add everything else except potatoes and half of the cheese. Heat to boiling. (When I made the recipe I had to defrost the frozen potatoes because they were all stuck together.) Remove mix from heat and add potatoes. Pour into baking dish and cover with cheese. Bake for 1 hour. (check potatoes for doneness)
We liked this one so much we have made it twice in the last few weeks.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Day 35 of 1001

Some days I feel like I am doing well with my list and other days I feel like I am slacking big time. So here we go with an update....

Post at least once a week (4/143)- I am actually doing good on this one and sometimes posting more than once a week.

Find 4 new blogs to follow (2/4) - There are two blogs I have found or have found me. One if the Green family ( I found them through Suzanne's blog and I have been praying for these girls as they are growing in the NICU. The other blog is Amanda Durham Jenkins ( This one actually found me today when I logged into blogger I had a icon saying I had a new follower. (Something that is new to me) and it was Amanda. Amanda and I are best friends who don't get to see each other or talk to each other much because she is in Cali. I am glad she has joined the blogging world so I can keep a better visual update of her and Mark and the babies.

Cooking & Baking (9)-
Try a new recipe every month (0/33)- I kinda have not done this but in a way I have... BJ made pork chops one night and I made homemade gravy without a recipe but from memory of how my mom made hers. It took some doctoring but turned out ok. I plan on trying a new recipe this week to make up for the lacking on one last week.

Start a Amish Friendship Bread Starter- I was able to get a starter from a sweet lady on freecycle!!! After my attempt failed.

Keep Amish Friendship Bread starter and bread going- I have actually been keeping two starts going so we always have bread at my house. It is nice to be able to make some for us and some to share!

Make homemade bread (other than friendship bread) 10 times (0/10)- I have not made any bread other than friendship bread yet but I have started my search for a Banana Nut Bread this morning. BJ mentioned this weekend that he wanted some (I did not know he liked it) so I thought it would be a good bread to give a try!

Education (4)-

Complete Orientation class with Columbia Southern University - I have completed my Orientation class (but I don't know how to draw a line through this one)

Us (10)-
Take a walk together once a month (0/33)- We did not go on a walk per say but we did enjoy a day together window shopping and enjoying each other.

Have a date night at least once a month (0/33)- Date nights are fun and I can't wait for the next one!

Leave encouraging notes at least every other week (0/71)- I have completely slacked on this one. I forgot it was on my list. But now I have looked over my list I will have to work harder on it!

Daily pray for my husband (35/1001)

Go on a trip together at least once a year even if it is a weekend trip (0/3)- Now that gas prices are going down we have talked about where we would like to go on a weekend trip. I am having fun looking for places to go.

Go to a Colts game in the new stadium- No we have not gone to a game yet but we considered buying tickets for the Colts Patriots game for this Sunday... But did not.

Have a movie night once a month (1/33) - We tend to have more of these then once a month but they are fun all the same.

Home (12)-

Finish unpacking boxes- I have not completely unpacked but I have cleaned out some boxes...

Do a good deep cleaning once a month (1/33) - This was done over two different day to get the various parts of the house but I did do it (Or should I say we because BJ is the vaccuum man)

Others (4)-
Send a thinking about you card once a month to a friend (0/33) - I slacked on this one two but I have barely missed the one month mark so I will have to pull out the cards tonight!

Reading (7)-
Read for pleasure daily (21/1001)- Reading for pleasure is harder then on one think.. School book is usually read before the pleasure books.

Go to a bookstore once a month (0/33)- I did miss this one by a couple of days but the plan is to go to Barnes and Nobles with Suzanne on Wednesday so I thought I could get away with a few days late.

Keep up with the books and discussions of our cousin’s book club - In order to do this one I would have to read the book (I know Ashley I know I should have read it by now...) But I can't get into the book...

Money (4)-
Continue in my coupon adventure and continue to get better with practice- I am actually getting better with this one. I am learning to work the sales and coupons to make the most of my money and pay as little out of pocket as possible. I do better at CVS then Walgreen's or Kroger. But I think for me to do better at Kroger I am going to have to start making a menu for each week.

Put up $5 for every 101 completed (Thanks, Ash for the idea!) (1/101)- I have one 101 done! Now I have to find a jar to start my collection!

Creative (5)-
Make Christmas Stockings- I have started on this... I will have to take a picture of our living room. I have all the boxes of material out and was on a pretty good roll a couple of weekends ago when BJ was working. I tend to do better on the Saturdays he is working. I have also ordered some Christmas fabric from online. Now I have to make a list and check it twice of everyone who I want to give stocking to this year.

Me (Not a long section but they are all for me) (5)-
Clean out my car once a week (3/143)- I tend to half way clean out my car and not give it full effort. I realized Saturday if I had been giving it full effort I would have found my wedding pictures on CD from Suzanne a while ago instead of just now!

I am getting there... slowly but surely!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Christmas Recipes & Week 2 Update

I have started gathering Christmas recipes to decide which one to add to our Christmas goodies baskets. Mom and I have decided to do a good bit of our baking the Friday and Saturday after Thanksgiving so I really have to get looking.

I failed on cleaning out my car this week. I went grocery shopping instead. Good trade right!

I made Amish Friendship Bread Friday night and Saturday and have enjoyed every bit of it. I am looking forward to making it again soon. I was able to share some with mom and the family. Winnie wants to make some for her small group so she will be at my house helping make some the first bread day after their Disney trip. I also brought some up to work to share. They guys gave me a hard time saying something must be wrong or about to be wrong since the boss was bringing food to work.

I did a little better on the reading for pleasure. I managed 6 out of 7 days. Some days I only read a little somedays a little more.

BJ and I also went out to eat on our date night. We went to Salsa's and Hobby Lobby. Sounds like a good date huh!

Friday, October 3, 2008

I'm excited!!! It's Bread Day!

I was able to get a start from a lady on Free cycle for the Amish Friendship Bread!!!!

So tonight I will be making bread. If anyone wants to come join in on the good hot bread fresh out of the oven you are more then welcome to come over.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Week 1 Update

I have only been at this for a week now and at times I think I better get going on the list and at other times I feel like I have a ways to go and have plenty of time.

Not much going on this week. I have read 5 out of 7 days. Reading for pleasure is harder than I thought it would be but I am enjoying getting the reading in.

My attempt at starting the friendship bread started failed. I listed on Free Cycle that I was looking for a starter yesterday and got a few hits on it. I got the starter today from a lady who sent two things of it. So on Friday I will be making lots of yummy bread. Let me know if you want to try the bread or want some starter!

Mom and I are starting to think about our Christmas goodies that we will make this year. We have decided that we are going to do as much baking as possible the Friday and Saturday after Thanksgiving. Which means I have to get looking for new recipes. I might also be looking into getting two new cookbooks!!! I think I have a cookbook problem!

Wednesday night we sat and watched Baby's Mama. Funny movie!

I have been doing well with my couponing. I have a blog for it... It helps me keep track of how I am doing with my saving, spending and such...

Oh and I cleaned out my car and blogged!

That's just about it for this week.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Things I have started

Well it is offically day one of my 1001 days but there are somethings that I have already started.

Cooking & Baking
I started my Amish Friendship Bread Starter last night. It takes 27 days to get the starter going before you can make bread. After that you get to make the bread every 10 days. The big struggle is to get the starter going when it is not given to you. Once you make the bread you then save some of the starter, use some of the starter and then give some of the starter way (FRIENDSHIP BREAD!) We shall see how it goes and hopefully if my starter makes it through the 27 days I will have bread on Saturday October 18th and let me tell you I can already taste the cinnomin and sugar on top of the bread.

I have already started three things in this group. BJ started back to school in August. This is an adjustment because he is taking online classes and has also been out of school for a little while.
I also have completed my orientation class. It was done within 24 hours of starting the class but they allow 2 weeks and then I will get the grade.
I also started my first 8 week class with Columbia Southern.

It seems like I have been unpacking boxes for forever. But I really haven't. I have unpacked all the stuff you need all the times. I am mostly down to the boxes of stuff that would have probably stayed at mom and dad's forever or stuff I have to find a place for...

We are not fan of credit cards or accounts but we do have a few and they are for various reasons. We want to pay these off soon as most people do! We have started paying these off. I have also moved money around in our budget to help with this.

Thanks to my coupon adventiures I have been able to make some money at Walgreen's with their register rewards. With those I was able to get some pictures developed last week while they were running a sale and I was able to use the Walgreen's Register Rewards before they expired which meant I did not have to pay a great deal of money for all of the prints I got made!

Well its a pretty good start to the list... What do you think?

Why A Blog?

I decided it would be nice to keep up with how I am doing with my list through a blog.

Why not I sit at a computer for around 10 hours a day right!?!

I have gotten started with a couple of things on my list and I put them in Italics.

Also my start day is September 23, 2008 ending on June 20, 2011.

101 things in 1001 days

101 things in 1001 days

Blog (5)
- Learn to change backgrounds, fonts, ect.
- Learn how to link websites
- Learn how to draw lines threw words
- Post at least once a week (0/143)
- Find 4 new blogs to follow (0/4)

Cooking & Baking (9)
- Try a new recipe every month (0/33)
- Try two new Christmas goody recipes each year (0/6)
- Learn to decorate cakes
- Make a gingerbread house
- Start a Amish Friendship Bread Starter
- Keep Amish Friendship Bread starter and bread going
- Find MY cheesecake recipe
- Make homemade bread (other than friendship bread) 10 times (0/10)
- Make some homemade ice cream in our ice cream maker
- Expand my cookbook collection (0/10)

Education (4)
- Encourage BJ as he goes back and continues school
- Complete Orientation class with Columbia Southern University
- Look into Financial Aid and Scholarships I can get with Columbia Southern
- Completed the 12 classes needed for my Bachelor’s Degree (0/12)

Us (10)
- Take a Us picture at least every other month (0/16)
- Take a walk together once a month (0/33)
- Have a date night at least once a month (0/33)
- Go back to Rosswood Plantation
- Leave encouraging notes at least every other week (0/71)
- Daily pray for my husband (0/1001)
- Go on a trip together at least once a year even if it is a weekend trip (0/3)
- Try 5 restaurants we have never tried before (0/5)
- Go to a Colts game in the new stadium
- Have a movie night once a month (0/33)

Home (12)
- Plant trees and plants in front and backyard
- Find my table and mirror for the foyer
- Make some sort of arrangement for the foyer table
- Finish unpacking boxes
- Have a wedding picture of us enlarged and framed
- Host at least 3 parties or get together (0/3)
- Invite everyone from work over for a cookout
- Refinish grandmother’s dresser with BJ
- Organize closet – especially shoes!
- Order various fragrant candles
- Buy a rocking chair recliner
- Do a good deep cleaning once a month (0/33)

Others (4)
- Pay for the person behind me in the drive thru at least 3 times (0/3)
- Participate in Christmas Angel Tree each year (0/3)
- Donate 50,000 grains of rice through (0/50,000)
- Send a thinking about you card once a month to a friend (0/33)

Reading (7)
- Read for pleasure daily (0/1001)
- Read 5 of the 9 Nicholas Sparks books I have not read yet (includes The Lucky One, The Choice, The Notebook, The Rescue, A Bend in the Road, Night in Rodanthe, The Guardian, Three Weeks w/ My Brother, True Beliver, and At First Sight) (0/5)
- Go to a bookstore once a month (0/33)
- Read 2 non-fiction books (0/2)
- Read a Karen Kingsburg series
- Read 1 biography (0/1)
- Keep up with the books and discussions of our cousin’s book club

Money (4)
- Continue in my coupon adventure and continue to get better with practice
- Put up $5 for every 101 completed (Thanks, Ash for the idea!) (0/101)
- Save up two to three months of living expenses
- Pay off all credit cards and open accounts

Creative (5)
- Finish printing out our wedding pictures and put them into photo albums (yes I said albums because I have A LOT!)
- Work/Learn how to make Cathedral pillows and Quilt
- Make Christmas Stockings
- Make a quilt for our bed
- Make a t-shirt memory quilt

Christmas (8)
- Send out Christmas Cards
- Buy at least one special ornament each Christmas (0/3)
- Buy Larger Tree
- Go see the Canton Christmas lights
- Watch Banana in the Nutcracker
- Decorate Mantel
- Make a wreath for the front door
- Go to Mistletoe Marketplace

Travel, Places, or Things (12)
- Go to the D Day Museum in New Orleans
- Go see at least 5 covered bridges I have not seen (0/5)
- Visit at least 5 historic places in Mississippi (0/5)
- Visit at least 8 historic places outside of Mississippi (0/8)
- Take a weekend trip to Tennessee
- Take a trip to Texas
- Take a train somewhere
- Visit the MS Museum of Arts
- Go to a Pilgrimage
- Research 3 places to go on vacation the BJ & I have not gone (0/3)
- Go on one of these vacations
- Visit BJ’s cousin in Chicago

Me (Not a long section but they are all for me) (5)
- Manicure at least 3 times (0/3)
- Pedicure at least 3 times (0/3)
- Day at a Spa including a Facial and Message
- Clean out my car once a week (0/143)
- Vote in the November 2008 election

Photography (10)
- Learn to use four features on my camera that I have not used before (0/4)
- Matte/frame five of my photos from my Hinds photo class projects (0/5)
- Take pictures of all us kinds to update dad’s kids photos at work
- Go on 6 photo taking trips (0/6)
- Learn to do after shot touchups and effects to photos
- Take another photography class
- Scan old photos onto the computer
- Backup said pictures to CD
- Send 10 CDs to friends and family (0/10)
- Load photos onto my digital photo frame

- By March 2009
- By September 2009
- By March 2010
- By September 2010
- By March 2011