Showing posts from December, 2012

Happy New Year!

I have so totally not been able to make up my mind about what to serve tonight.

So I'm going to make a little bit of everything.

Asian wings, a Mexican Pizza calling for shredded beef roast, mozzarella cheese and hot peppers, then I'll make an artichoke salad with a oil/vinger dressing, I love that salad and sliders with fry sauce, potato wedges and other stuff.

I'm thinking Apple Cake w/Carmel sauce for one of the desserts.

I couldn''t wait to get started.

Just as I was heading out the door on my way to the store, Mark called and told me to put the check for the new pump he had to buy in the mail.

When I saw the cost of the pump I quickly changed the menu to peanut butter sandwiches and water.

No, not really but who ever said water was cheap never bought a deep well sand handler water pump before.

Well, I'm off to prepare a New Years delight for my wonderful gang.

Hope you have a great time with those you love the most!

Happy New Year!

Snow, Snow on the Range

T  I had the camera with me when I went to the mailbox today.

I adore snowy fields.

This is taken from the front porch looking north.
I've always loved that old tree.  In the summer and fall there is usually corn on the east side of the tree and beans on the west side.  Or corn on the right of the tree and beans on the left if you are a right/left type person.

This of course is the front porch.

This is the view from the mailbox looking east.

I'm standing in the road singing, "Snow, Snow on the range" as I take these pictures. 

I love my little snowy range.

Jambalaya Joy

Okay, I accept it.  I accept the fact, try as I might I am not going to be the next Pioneer Woman, Paula Deen, Martha Stewart or "The Rachel Ray" as my neighbor used to call her.

Today was the perfect day for Jambalaya.  So I thought I would make it, take pictures and give you the recipe.

It was all going to be so good.

But when I went to take pictures, the batteries were dead. To many Christmas pictures I suppose.

Then when I went to add the shrimp to the jambalaya the shrimp was gone. To many hungry boys I suppose.

Much to my dismay I also found I had left the rice over at Lost River on Christmas Eve so I couldn't make the rice.

You know how they say everything is a blessing if you look deep enough. So the best I can figure, My batteries are dead in the camera because a picture of Jambalaya with no shrimp and no rice wouldn't make a pretty picture. Therefore by having dead batteries  I have been saved  from an embarrassing ugly Jambalaya  photo shoot.

But then I th…

Christmas Work and Christmas Fun

We had a great Christmas..

We hosted the Gray Christmas on Christmas Eve and the Marshall one on Christmas Day.

We did a taco bar for the Grays and it was great to have almost everyone there this time.

Christmas morning we had our Christmas here. Olivia's boyfriend Tim was with us since his family is in Fl.

Lucas was the first one of the kids up so he got the others up and called Heidi and Paul and told them to get over here.

We ate breakfast, minus the juice and opened gifts.

Tim came downstairs before the other kids because no one had told him they had to stay upstairs until the all came, so he went back up to wait.

Lucas always stands in front of the tree and makes some type of talk before we open gifts., We don't know why he does this. He never talks and the one day everyone wants him to be still and get on with the gifts he makes a speech.

He tells us how we may not all be here again, or how it isn't the cost of the gift that matters or about how if he buys cheap stuf…

Christmas at Grandma's

I guess everyone has a Christmas or maybe even a couple that stand out in their mind.

One of mine is the year we got so many gifts. My brothers and I came downstairs and I know the floor was half covered in toys. I got a beautiful white wicker crib with a baby doll. Brian got a GI Joe and Todd got a Johnny West.

Toy wise, that was the best Christmas ever.

We always went to my Grandma and Grandpa Money's for Christmas Dinner, (noon meal).

I remember one year when I was five or six the whole family got snowed in there. All of my aunts and uncles and cousins.

We went sled riding down Daisy Hill.  It all seemed so exciting. I'd never been to an entire family sleep-over before.

We were all piled around everywhere when it came time to go to sleep.

I can remember lying there near my Aunt Jan, she was trying to sleep in a chair and we talked about how crowded we were.

I don't remember anything about the next morning, but I will always remember that night.

That was the last Christm…

When the Snow Flies

I can't believe it!

Well, actually I can believe it.  This isn't the first time I've' done this type of thing.

But I thought I had got more savey than to still be doing it.

I was so happy to see the snow. I know it makes the roads bad and the work harder but it was beautiful.

I couldn't wait to take pictures here at Rosebud and over at the River both.

I stood outside in the cold  this morning in my pj's to get a picture of Fox in the snow. Now I know it isn't proper for a lady to stand in the yard in the snow taking pictures in her pjs but the moment had to be seized. There was no other choice.

Then we went to the river and on the way I stopped the car and told Heidi to get a picture of the corn shocks with the snow on them.

She said, "Mom it's cold out there, come back and get it later."   I huffed and drove on.

Then when we got there I ran all over the farm snapping pictures thinking what fun I would have telling you about them.

I came home …

First Give Away---What's Your Favorite Song

I am so excited!

From what I can understand it's a "blog" kind of thing to do to have give-aways.

I love that idea. What's more fun than giving things away?

So I decided "Then I Thought of Home" will have its first give-away this week.

You know I love shopping local and I love my friends so if I can shop local with a friend well I'm gonna be all about it.

So I have a $20.00 gift certificate to Julie's Gift Garden. It's located on Elm Street in Salem.

She has all kinds of pretty Christmas things, candles, purses, mugs, centerpieces, homemade candies, treats for your pets, there is to much to list.

All you have to do to win is tell me your favorite Christmas song.

Since it's late in the game and in the week the contest will only run until Wed. night.

We'll draw at nine o'clock Wednesday evening and let you know who won.

I'll mail  the certificate to the winner Thursday.

You can leave your favorite song as a comment here or on the …

Little Ones are Listening

I am glad we live in an age of information.

We can quickly know when things happen and that makes us quickly able to respond.

For most of us there is little we can physically do for the families in Conn.

But there is a lot we can do for our families here.

Our kids live in a scarry world.

We need to be careful how much of the news we watch and how much of it we let them watch.

We need to be aware of our conversations that they hear and the fb posts we make.

Our little ones are listening and all kind of things are running through there  minds. Things that are to big for them.  They are to big for us, so you know it is to much for them.

Make a point to pray today with your kids about all that has happened. Let them send cards to the school. Let them talk.

Then try to let them go on with their childhood.  We don't want this terrible act to steal anything else from anyone else.

And it isn't just the small children, our teenagers face such a sense of hopelessness when they see all t…

Christmas Gift Exchange Game

The whole Christmas gift extended family thing.

To participate or not to participate?

When we first married we bought for everyone on my side of the family.

As we started having kids we only gave to the kids but mom and dad still gave to everyone.

In time my brothers and I decided to stop even getting for the kids.

Mom and Dad still bought for everyone. We told them not to but they told us to leave them and their Christmas alone.

On the Gray side we always drew names, over time we stopped that also.

We would give one single gift to a whole family. Things like, candy, or ornaments, games and the like.

This year I'm looking  for  a gift exchange game.  Something different and fun.

If you have any ideas please share them.

I would love it and I'm sure there are others out there looking for ideas too.

So, what gift exchange game does your family play?

Christmas with Pam at French Lick

I'm so glad you got here!

I've got exciting news. My friend and neighbor, Pam Hoover will be at French Lick this weekend.

She will be there Friday evening and Saturday and Sunday too at the Christmas Craft fair, in the Winsor Ballroom.

Pam told me there will be 65 vendors there so you will have lots to look at but you will want to buy from Pam I'm sure!

She is going to have headbands, hats, scarves, yarn etc for sale and the best part it's all handmade by Pam.

The even better part is the yarn she uses is right from her own farm. She shears her sheep and goats, cleans the wool and spins away.

I love finding unique gifts at unique places from special people and this craft show will offer all of those things.

Plus, I was talking to Natalie and she said they took the boys to see the trees and decorations at the dome and it was beautiful.

I read on fb that Jenisa went with her husband and boys and they had a wonderful time too.

Head on over to French Lick this weekend and …

Breakfast Bowls

Here's a breakfast idea that's easy for you and filling for them.

We had it this morning.

Best part.....everything is in one bowl so you don't have as many dishes!!

Everyone Loves a Sunny Morning


Then I Thought of Home - Kelly Gray

Stop by my new facebook/blog page,  Then I Thought of Home-Kelly Gray and check it out.

Several of you have told me you want to follow the blog but it seems complicated or you want to comment but it is to confusing.

If that's you go to the fb page, click like and you can follow, plus leave your comments on the fb page and life is simpler for everyone.

I'll be posting other things about home on the page too.

Just little notes about cooking, baking, the importance of home and family.

You know by now I love good quotes so can be looking for a few of those also.

I'm enjoying the page and the only thing it is missing is you adding to the fun, so stop by, click like and join the party!!

See you there.

Help!! Christmas Dinner, I Simply Can't Decide

I go back and forth then forth and back.
 One minute I'm sure, the next I'm not.

Which menu do you like?

Glazed Ham
Spicy Lemon Garlic Shrimp
Cheesy Scalloped Potatoes
Baked Beans
Pasta Salads
Lettuce Salads

Or how about a Soup Supper?

Veggie Soup
Assorted Cheeses
and a relish tray

Hey maybe we could even have a Chili contest!  That would be different and fun.

Then I thought of having Frogmore Stew, which is basically what some call a Shrimp Boil or Low Country Boil.

It has ear corn, Kielbasa lemons, red potatoes, clams, crab legs and jumbo shrimp.

I love i,t but think it may be hard to convince Mark to buy all the seafood it would take to feed his side of the family.  I know it would hard to convince him to buy all the seafood it would take to feed my side of the family. LOL

So, what do you think?

Or what I really want to know, is what are you having? 

Lookout, Livestock on the Loose

As you have probably figured out by now from reading my fb posts, livestock on the loose and me tend to wind up at the same place at the same time on a regular bases.

Once when I was pregnant, big and pregnant mind you, I heard a lot of commotion out on the front porch.  I went and looked out the door and there was a boar on the porch. 

He had got out, walked to the house, up onto the porch and fell through a weak board.

He was not happy and Mark was not around.

I knew I was going to have to help him get out and you know how boars can be.

Not pleasant.

I told  Heidi and Lucas to stay in the house and was getting ready to go out when he broke loose and took off.

I don't know who was happier him or me.

One other time I had just got a new dress.

It was red and I had new black shoes to go with it.

We went out to go to church, only to find the hogs were out.

I chased a couple sows down the road in my new dress and in my new heels.

The dress fared okay but the shoes were never the sa…

Can We Have Breakfast Tarts, Can We Please?

My bunch thinks it wouldn't be Christmas breakfast without these.

Hope your family enjoys them as much as mine.

Ham and Cheese Tarts, (we call them Breakfast Tarts)

2 pkgs. (3oz.each) cream cheese
1/2 cup french onion dip
1 TBSP milk
1/4 tsp. ground mustard
1/2 cup finely chopped ham
2 tubes refrigerated buttermilk biscuits (not jumbo, the little ones)

In a small mixing bowl, beat cream cheese,onion dip, milk and mustard until blended. Stir in ham.

Split each biscuit into thirds or halves if you like and press into a greased  mini muffin pan. 

Press dough slightly up the sides of the pan.  Spoon a scant or heaping, tsp of filling into each biscuit.

 Sprinkle with paprika and bake at 375 degrees for 13-14 minutes. These are best served warm.

Christmas, It Isn't Just For Kids

We hear people say, "Christmas is really for the kids."

That isn't true is it?

I hope not..

It's easy to get got up in the joy of the children and miss the older folks

If you are looking for gift ideas for those people who have been in your life the longest, maybe this  will help. 

1.Put their tree up for them.  Make a party of it.  Remember to return after Christmas to take it down.

2. Take them out for a drive around town to see the lights.

3. Read out loud with them stories of old time Christmas's. When my kids were small we used to go to the nursing home and read "Little House on the Prairie" to the residents.  They loved the ones about Christmas.

4.Serve them hot chocolate while they tell you and your family of Christmas's past.  You may even want to record it. 

5. Take them a quart of homemade soup, better yet take two and stay for supper. They'll love it!

Fruit baskets go bad.

Nuts are hard to crack and eat.

Flannel shirts get put into…

Christmas Gifts, Its A Wrap

While I know there are some of you out there who really do love to wrap gifts, I also know gift wrapping is one of the most complained about parts of Christmas.

When we were children our gifts from Santa were never wrapped, we just came into the living room to see them all under the tree.

Mark's family wrapped all of theirs so we followed the Gray suit and wrapped our children's.

Every year each child had their own roll of gift wrap and all their gifts were wrapped in it. This did a way with the need for name tags and was fun for them and easy for me.

Since gift wrapping seems a headache for so many how about a couple gift wrap Advil's to take the edge off.

Maybe these ideas will help.

1. Host a gift wrapping party with your closest friends or family. After all, you know what they say, "Misery loves company."

2. Use the simple gift bag approach. Remember to remove the name tag from last year.

3. How about a gift wrap ministry at your church or work?  Wrapping is …

Hot Chocolate with Whipped Cream Please

When I was a girl mom made us hot chocolate.

She used Hershey's cocoa powder and of course made it on the stove.

Sometimes she dipped it right out of the kettle for us and other times, special times, deemed special by mom,  she would put a towel over the coffee table sort of like a mini tablecloth and serve my brothers and me from a pretty white china teapot , well she turned it into a hot chocolate pot for the special evenings.

Mom still has the pot. I wish I had a picture of it I could post.

On those evening we also got cinnamon toast. Which is  buttered bread with cinnamon and sugar sprinkled over it then put under the broiler for a few minutes.  It was as good as a fancy teacake to the boys and I.

On Christmas Eve, the boys, Dad and myself would drink our hot chocolate while mom read the Christmas story from a brown Bible story book we had.

I still love to hear my mom read.

Just the other day Jessica told me that the she and the girls had been talking and they realized they …