The days in between were somewhat normal, as hubby had to work on Thursday, Friday, and part of the day on Saturday. On Sunday, though, we met my sweet young'un, his wife and my sweet 'Punkin Bug' for lunch at a local Olive Garden. My 'young'un' is actually my nephew, his wife is the niece I have wanted for many years, and Punkin Bug ... well, Punkin Bug is my grandbaby by choice. My nephew's birth mother has not been in his life since he was small, and so I have gladly, joyfully, and most gratefully taken up that position. Here's my sweet baby boy in his 6 month picture ...
Isn't he just the most beautiful thing you've ever seen??? I love my boys ... father and son ... so very much! We had asked them not to get us any gifts this year as our budget was so limited, but they didn't listen! They gave us a Cracker Barrel gift card, two framed pictures of Punkin Bug, and an album full of pictures of all of them. That was THE BEST gift I got this year!
Then Monday and Tuesday of this week I did some things around the house ... cooking and cleaning ... well, scrubbing! I have neglected my house so much these last few years, so when I decided to 'just clean out this one cabinet ...' it turned into a major purging and scrubbing. I did discover a helpful hint! Nothing was getting the dried, gunky grease off of the cabinet to the right of my stove, so I tried baking soda and lemon juice in a paste, rubbed on with a damp towel ... it worked like a charm! Took a little elbow grease, but it worked much better than the other things I had tried did!
New Years Eve was it's usual quiet, laid back evening, and yes, I was asleep before midnight! On New Years Day I got up and put on my beef stew in the slow cooker. On Tuesday I had peeled and chopped up my carrots, potatoes, celery, onions and red bell peppers, so they were ready to go ... all I had to do was dredge the beef chunks in seasoned flour and brown them on the stove before putting it all together.
Cook's Tip: If you want to get potatoes peeled and cut up a day early, simply get them ready to cook and put into a large airtight container, completely covered in cold water and store in the refrigerator. They will still be perfectly good for cooking the next day.
So, that catches me up to today ... I still have pictures of my swap gift from Sue to share with me ... they came on Saturday after Christmas and we've not really had any sunny weather so I could get decent pictures since then, but I love everything and will share with you as soon as I can! I have also finished the puppy dog tags for Valentines that I started earlier this week, so I will share them with you soon too.
Oh, and I almost forgot! If you will look at the blog header above you will see my 'OLW' (one little word) for 2014 ... it is a simple, two letter word ... DO ... but it has a lot of meaning for me! I have many things I want and need to get done this year in preparation for my hubby's retirement at the end of this year. I will keep you posted on that down the road a bit!
Please take a moment and tell me about your OLW, resolutions, goals, plans, dreams for 2014 ... I would love to hear from you! Blessings,