Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Happiest of New Years To You!!!!

To one and all-- I hope your New Year is full of blessing & brightness.

Resolutions? Moi? No way!!! I'm finished with the custom of resolutions. I just end up disappointing myself when they are all left undone! Perhaps each new morning I'll just remind myself of my blessings, and that it's up to me to make the most of those blessings. Each morning offers a new day to be one's best; to make the most of the next few hours; to smile more, complain less, help others, do my finest labor. So I'll just do the "resolution" thing daily.

What are you most proud of looking back over the past 365 days? Hmmmmm--in trying to accomplish less pride in life, it's hard to say. Maybe jumping out and purchasing the kitchen--especially in the economic realm facing us. Maybe how I cleaned up and prepared the job I left for the next person to take the reigns (and may I say she is doing a marvelous job). Maybe of how passionately I loved my family. Pride comes hard for me.

What do you want to accomplish in 2009? PAYING OFF THE NOTE ON THE KITCHEN!!!!! Now that most likely won't happen this year, but I'm sure going to work on it. The sooner it's paid off, the less worry I have and the more time I can give back to ---- me!---- And, I want to spend more time with Hank. It's difficult as he lives an hour away, and his mom works and doesn't want to share him (yeah, yeah, I totally understand that).

I found a greeting card that showed a "retro" lady sleeping; inside it said "I dreamed my house was clean". I think that is great----I have those dreams. Then I wake up and it hasn't happened!!! Where are those darned elfs????

Well, I'm off to put away the multitudes of boxes containing Christmas decor and to cook for a New Year's Eve party I'm catering. And--Hank is coming to spend the night! Whoopee!!! So I'll close for now.

Sweet Dreams & Sweeter Days!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Oh Yes, We DID!!!

Supplies for the food: $25.00, Party favors: $25.00, Breakfast w/the Ya Yas: PRICELESS!!!!!
Yes, we had our annual "come as you are" Christmas breakfast. We've been doing this for, hmmmm, what do you think gals??? Between 7 & 10 years???? It's such a fun, relaxing time to reconnect with our soul sistas. Due to the icy weather last year, we didn't get to have the breakfast and I think it affected me all year long. I'm certain I was a bit grumpier, a bit less thankful, more crochety---all because I didn't get my "ya ya therapy" to end the year. So, by gosh and by golly, I offered to host the breakfast just so we'd all get together. Ah, the laughter, the food, the mimosas!!! We sat and sat and sat and before we knew it, 2 1/2 hours had passed. and we STILL didn't get all the gabbing in. But we had to stop--committments, schedules, work, all of those voices calling us away.
Now, as you can see, we take this "come as you are" theme SERIOUSLY---not one of us is worried about make up, hair, or even what we slept in!! We just jump and run at the chance to have breakfast with one another. And when it's over the hugs and kisses are flowing---as if it would be another year before we're together again (which isn't so), but it's such a special time for us.
And I hope each one of you know, Barbs, Penny, Dalene, Carol Ann, Jennifer, how very, very, very dear to my heart you are. Each of you complete one facet of my exciting life!!! I don't ever want to imagine life without ya!!~
Love and hugs to all!!!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Wheeeee!!!! We Made It Through Christmas!!!

We had a GREAT Christmas week. Yes, WEEK!!! We began with Christmas with my hubby's family last Sunday, Christmas Eve attending services & chili at our house, Christmas breakfast at our house, and Christmas evening dinner at my sister's house. We are nothing if not a bunch of piggies!!! My niece & nephew got a Wii and a Rock Star Band for Christmas. Did we ever have us some FUN!!! The picture above is my son and my nephew boxing on the Wii. It was soooo funny---they kept getting closer and closer to the TV; as if they were actually going to jump in the screen and box!
This is our annual family photo. Of course, Hank is the star of the pic! His mom is holding him, and his dad is behind him. That's my son (the 30 year old one!!!) standing next to Hank & his mom. And, of course hubby and me rounding out the pic. And I do mean "rounding" ha ha ha

This is the Rock Star portion of our entertainment. We all took turns--when one could pry the instruments and mic out of the other's hand!!! In this pic my sister is the lead singer--my son is on guitar---and daughter is on drums. When I tried the guitar we got booed off stage!!! Even the dog, Petey, wants in on the action. Actually, he was jealous of the attention the TV was getting. He kept finding his toys, jumping on the footstool and dropping the toys, as if to say "Hey this looks fun, right?"

I know I have told you about the cookie making Saturday we have each December. We've been doing this for the past 5 or 6 years, and intend to continue the tradition. This year, as I was out shopping, I found these aprons at Hallmark marked 40% off. And, I couldn't resist. So I got one for each of us (now why didn't I have mine on and get in the pic????). I even got an extra, you know, just in case!!! So, next year we have "official" aprons to wear!!! They had some for kids that said "Cookie Taster" and I may go back and get some of those. I'm sure we'll add little ones through the years---Hank was with us this year but he had NO interest in cooking!!!
It was a blessed and happy Christmas for all of us. I hope you found the same joy. And that you kept the meaning of Christmas in your hearts as you celebrated.
Happy Holidays!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Pressure Cooked!!!!

Hello there friends & foes!! This is what I have been looking at for the past four days, round the clock!! Well, not actually--I have been home at 10:00 each night, and back at it early the next morning, at least by 6:00 a.m. I know why people lived above their shops in days of yore.
Anyway, I am sooooooo glad that this is Wednesday evening. I have been fully, and I mean FULLY, booked through this evening. Why just today: 225 meals @ Saint Francis Labs by 11:00 a.m., lunch at church to oversee, 70 more meals at the Labs by 5:00 p.m. and then dinner service for 25 in Broken Arrow. At a home that was 12,ooo--that's taaaawelve thousand---square feet large. We only stayed in the two adjoining kitchens and served to the three dining rooms!!!!! It was ostentatious, arrogant, flamboyant, gaudy, --- could I think of more adjectives??? Probably. And to top it off, they had all of these oil pictures (is there a fancier name??) with scripture on them. And they were the coldest, most demanding bunch! Just what I feel Jesus himself would NOT have been!!! Now, if you read my blog, you know I'm a practicing Christian, but come on---if you're going to hang it on your wall, please, PLEASE, wear it on your sleeve!!!
Tomorrow I have a breakfast for 75, and two lunches---one for 10, and one for 45. Then a lunch for 40 to be picked up at 8:00 a.m. Friday, a lunch for 15 to deliver, then a dinner for 15 to deliver at 5:30. Whew!! I'll be glad when it's tomorrow night! Saturday is family cookie day, and I WILL NOT reschedule that! Even if I do have a lunch to deliver at 11:30 Saturday--it's here in town, so shouldn't be a problem. Monday a lunch in Sapulpa, Tuesday a lunch in Sand Springs and one in Tulsa, and then----MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! It's over for the year!!! I think I'm going to take off til January 15.
Well, friends--I may not be commenting on your blogs right now, but I'm reading you!!! And enjoying each word.
I'm just living in a pressure cooker!!!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Right??? Left??? Pause???

Decisions, decisions--I want to sit here and blog; no wait, I want to go to bed; no, no I want to look at magazines. What's a gal to do??? It's 9:00 p.m., I just finished a long day at both the kitchen and at church (cooking the evening meal), and I have to get up early tomorrow cause I have 3 large events tomorrow, 3 larger events Friday, and 3 more large ones on Saturday. Chase those with 2 large events on Sunday and you have my cocktail!!! Ha ha. But there is sooooo much I want to do!!

So, is everyone finished with shopping for the season???? Please, PLEASE say no. Please let me believe I am not in the minority!! I have a few things. We are really cutting back this year. Not for the reasons most -- we do have jobs. But it's just time dang it! Why does Christmas get bigger and bigger. And why do we feel the need to spend more and more??? I'm freakin tired of it---the rat race to buy the love and adoration of those we shouldn't have to; the need to have our gifts out do our friends; so the truck stops here! It's time to go with fewer "things" and spend more quality time. And save more for the future.

Speaking of spending----I was at a women's event last week, shopping in the temporary bookstore (that was set up just so women would spend even more~~~arg), and did find a stocking stuffer I wanted. So---I ambled over to the check out area which consisted of two lines. Wasn't that neat? Two lines instead of one so that we could get out faster. The lines, of course, were still 10-15 women deep. Picked me a line and, as I became the 3rd person in line instead of #15, a cashier looked at me (sweetly, of course, this WAS a Christian event) and said "I see you're paying with debit card--this is the cash & check line". I laughed and then realized she was serious! So, being the obedient gal I am, I slunk over to the next line and became, once more, #16! Now I made it all the way to being second in line when the cashier said to her co-worker "Oh my goodness, our credit card swipe machine has just overloaded!" Then she looked at the line and asked if they wanted to "trust" them with their numbers and they would process payment the next day. No, I said, I'll just write a check. Can you guess what she replied??? Can you??? Yep! She said, "Well the check line is over there" CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT???? She actually thought I would step out of my position of #2 and go back to being a "16" for the third time!!! I looked at her, ever so demurely, and said "I'm not getting out of this line!". I guess she saw the determination (read fire) in my eyes, cause she said "Ok honey I'll take your check here, but the rest of you--if you want to pay with cash or check, will have to go to the next line" I think it was a glimpse of shopping to come, and let me tell you, I am terrified!

Never fails, if there is a new and confused checker, I have a radar for them. If they are in training, or don't speak my language, or don't like their job, I can find them in a heartbeat!!! So you see--I am sooooo looking forward to shopping!!!

Well, hubby just stopped by to say "GO TO BED", so I'd better sign off for now.

Have a restful evening!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Hooray for Friday!!!

This is one Friday I am going to ENJOY!!! Beginning next Tuesday, I am booked each and every day and weekend!!! So, today is the day to finish cleaning & decorating around the house---that plus I have a family dinner here on Sunday afternoon. And, since I am away from the house so much anymore, cleaning & decorating are actually enjoyable-how sad is that?????
Last evening was the Christmas Gathering that many of my friends and churchmates attended. It was simply wonderful, just as anticipated!!! The workshops this year included decorating tabletops & doors, new goodies for stocking stuffing, women's health, and ---drumroll please---cooking!!! It was fun and refreshing. AND--we got lots of good food to eat & the recipes too! It was ended with a devotional which reminded all of us to put an internal emphasis on the blessings we have. What a fun night! I took my camera and fully intended to share pics, but after I dropped the camera in my purse, I promptly forgot about it!!!
Hey I have an idea--wouldn't it be neat to spread all the holiday options over 12 months? There are home tours, dinners, special events, all that I won't be able to attend. Just can't fit it all in 4 weeks; but if it were spread over 12 months---wow---I could do it all. And we could do away with the presents all on one night--maybe one a month. I think the pocketbook would appreciate that too! Well, it was a good idea--- Wait! That's what the birth of Christ does for all of us. The blessings He brought and the promises He gave last each and every month! We have churches to go into and celebrate each Sunday, we have His presence (presents) in our lives each and every day, and His blessings are multiplied as we give more and more of ourselves to Him!!! Ok--there you go---Christmas all year long!!!
Well, it's time---the boxes of ornaments and decor call to me---the dust and piles of "things" are begging to be put away, so I must go quickly to the "Grime Scene" and answer the "Call of the Soiled"!!!
All of you have a great day--enjoy the blessings of the season, and each day.

Monday, December 1, 2008

December Days

Happy December 1~~~

I love this time of year, and yet, it can be the most stressful time of all! Do you feel it whirling towards you? All of the shopping, cooking, cleaning, planning, card signing, event attending, etc., etc., coming faster and faster????????

Well, take a deep breath and repeat "This is the day that the Lord has made, I will be rejoice and be glad in it" I will, I WILL!!!!! These are the days we look back to as the "good ole days" and wish we had taken them with more care!

Yesterday, hubby and I forsook all responsibilities and (after church of course!), went to eat at a neat little restaurant, The Palace Cafe in the Cherry St district. Then we went to the Festival of Trees at Philbrook Museum. And then, my favorite of all!, we went to Utica Square and shopped at Williams Sonoma and Margo's. Two really big faves on my list! And we topped it off with a visit to Target---back to reality shopping--ha ha ha. It felt sooooo good to have no plan, just take our time and eat, browse and welcome the season. We haven't done that in such a LONG time. And may not for another long while, but it made me feel so settled. So ready.

I have a couple of things scheduled for this week and then---BAM! Next week it becomes marathon cooking once again!

My son turns 30! Yes, 30!!! His birthday is Saturday, and we'll have lunch for him on Sunday. Boy! That sounds like he has an old mother---NOT! It's all a state of mind as long as one doesn't look in the mirror or shop in the Jr Dept!! I think I'm pretty agile & hip for the mom of a 30 year old. I must say---I have enjoyed nothing more than being the mom of my two children. They have brought such joy and fulfillment to my life. I just wish I saw them more these days. You know--they think they have to have these separate lives!!

Went to visit my daughter, son in law and Hank on Saturday. My mom had not seen her new home, so my niece and I took her. Then we had lunch together. I am so proud for them. They have worked hard to get to this stage of life---his two terms in Iraq, moving multiple times over 5 years, living in a little shoebox for nearly a year, his staff infection (which is fine!), her pregnancy with him overseas until the last 5 days. Well, I know there are many, MANY others with like and more dire conditions, but I'm still happy and proud for them!

Now, it's off to clean the house before I go and do major cleaning at the catering kitchen. Getting ready for that whirlwind to hit you know! Enjoy the holidays!

Thursday, November 27, 2008


Ok, so I waited a little too long in the evening for this photo--I'll try to take another, better one, but I wanted you to see the new city light fixtures and the Christmas wreaths that are hung in town. And this one is right outside my kitchen. I think it's quite quaint.
Thank God from whom all blessings flow
Thank Him ye people here below
Thank Him above you heavenly hosts
Thank Father, Son and Holy Ghost
Ok, so I took some creative license in the translation of that verse, but I think it actually makes it more personal. And I wanted to express just that on this Thanksgiving Evening.
I am thankful that I was able to bound out of bed this morning; that I had a house to sleep in; that I had Thanksgiving dinner with both sides of the family at the same house; that I am able to pursue my hobby as work--you know, the kitchen!!!; that my children are safe and secure; that we still have both sets of parents with us; that I live in this particular corner of the universe; that I have dear friends; that I have just enough to make life quite comfortable--not too little as to be in need and not too much as to become "haughty" about it; that I have gas in the car, bills paid, a perfect husband, ---- oh I could go on and on and on. But I am just thankful!
I think thankfulness is more a way of life, or a state of mind, than just a daily celebration. And I truly believe that as we live life being aware of all that we have been blessed with, we become more of the person God intended us to be. He allows us to choose our own state of mind--glass half empty or half full? Want to be an encourager or a discourager? Am I living 24/7 as He would have me, showing those around me each and every minute of each and every day His character, or am I plowing "full speed ahead" with my own agenda---disrupting all of His plans as I go?
I am so thankful for life in general---no, not for the trials and tragedies, but for getting up each morning, and understanding the slate is fresh and clean--that this is the day that He has made---I can rejoice & be glad in it or suffer from my own choosings.
I hope all of you reading this have had a wonderful day--that you ate too much---loved enthusiastically---appreciated humbly, and that tomorrow you have an idea of your many blessings!
Bon Nuit!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Pushing Daisies @ The Pie Hole!

Or perhaps this post should be "The Week of A Thousand Pies"!!! Well, ok, not that many--but close! ha ha ha
Yesterday I delivered lunch at three different places for 180 people. It was a Turkey Dinner Marathon. That was the last of deliveries for a week. This week will be concentrated on pies -- pumpkin pies, cream pies, pecan pies, chocolate pies, fruit pies. You name it, I'll bake it! On Wednesday I have several people picking up dinners. And some picking up dressing only. Hmmm guess people don't like making dressing!! Strikes me as funny.
When I bought this business I was determined that I would not work 12 & 14 hour days---that I would only take so many jobs each day/week, and that I would slow life down. NOT! How different when it's your own responsibility & the reputation lies on your own shoulders. Just yesterday I began work at 5:30 a.m. and ended at 8:30 p.m. I just can't seem to say no to jobs---you know, I DO have bills to pay. And I don't want to loose valuable customers. So, I am working longer and harder than I ever imagined I would, and enjoying it greatly! It's a big bonus that hubby likes the business as much as I do! He comes right after his "day" job, and stays til I go home. Sometimes I have to put aside what I need to do cause I know he's tired, and I don't want him running out of energy. We work well together (even if we do sound cranky from time to time) and he is sooooo supportive. I am blessed to have him! Just another reason I am thankful for him---there's my "thankful" post!
I'm also thankful that my son-in-law is doing better today. You remember he's in the hospital with staph--well it DID come back positive for MRSA on the second culture, but it's under control---we hope. On Thursday he had a set back; a reaction to the antibiotics. He began to run a 103 fever, and broke out in a horrendous rash all over his body. The Drs were afraid that they wouldn't be able to treat the infection, and that it had invaded his blood stream. But, as an answer to our prayers, they lessened the dosage of the antibiotic and and gave him something to counteract the effects. As of last night, the fever had broken and the rash was subsiding. They took him off the IV dosage & put him on an oral dosage and so far good. He will be in the hospital at the very least through the weekend. AND--the staph is not in the blood. Prayers answered! Please keep him in your prayers--it's not over yet.
Today I am going to do something DIFFERENT!!! At least different from the kitchen. It used to be something ordinary; funny how things take an alternate path! Anywho---I'm going to two craft shows!! Affair of the Heart is in Tulsa, and I, by golly, am taking the day off and attending. And, The Church at Battle Creek is having a craft show and I plan to stop there also!! I invited son's new girlfriend to go and she said yes---some time to get to know one another! Can't wait for the day to take off!!! You know, when the kids were small a dear friend (who deserted me for the fields of Kansas!) and I used to travel the craft show circuit peddling our wares. I got to where I didn't really like craft fairs. But now----I'm rip roarin ready!!! I'll let you know how they turn out!!
Well, gotta run---I really should straighten up the house a bit before I take off for a day of fun, fun, FUN!!!!!
Have a blessed day----

Monday, November 17, 2008

On The Menu: Turkey!

It's the calm before the storm! Today was mellow--tomorrow begins the "cooking of the turkeys"---I have 120 lbs to bake for the church dinner Wednesday, and 160 lbs to bake for lunch deliveries on Friday. Not to mention pumpkin pie for 140, along with dressing, taters & gravy, cranberry salad--all for the church dinner. Friday deliveries include ham, dressing, taters & gravy for 180! AND--the orders for pies have begun. Think perhaps I'd like to have pizza for Thanksgiving dinner???? Not going to happen--we tend to be verrry traditional when it comes to Thanksgiving dinner.
Hey--I have a request--my son in law is sitting in the ER as I write, waiting with his records to see what the verdict will be on his hand. You see, he has contracted staph infection in his hand (one of the benefits of his in hospital nursing training), and after multiple rounds of antibiotics, and having the area lanced & packed with antibiotic, his hand still isn't looking as well as they would like. So he has been sent to the ER to see if IV antibiotics are required, and to see if the infection has attacked the joint of his finger. So--all this to say--please say a prayer for him. I wish there was something I could do to help them get through this quickly, but ERs being what they are, well, he's been waiting for 6 hours now. About the time he's up for the "next room" an ambulance arrives with a priority patient! Anyway, keep him in your thoughts.
Now, about Thanksgiving--I'm thankful he isn't one of those "priority" patients; I'm thankful he's no longer in Iraq; I'm thankful for the beautiful young lady my son is seeing; I'm thankful I'm able to work at my "dream" job; I'm thankful for family close by; I'm thankful that I am living in a nation of freedom--I can write what I want, say what I choose, go where I like; I'm thankful the election is OVER!!! I'm thankful for my dear friends--you know who you are--and I treasure you!!! I'm thankful to have blessings too great to list!
And, I'm thankful that now I can go and recline on my comfy sofa, with a blanket thrown over, my cat by my side, and feel content, safe and happy!
Have a good week!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

A Moment In Time

Hello blog friends!!! It's been a while since my last post--did you miss me???
Well, this morning, I decided to MAKE myself take a few moments and check in blogland.
It's been a slow week--which I desperately needed, and which makes me nervous. I loved having the "down" time--cleaning a bit, running errands, catching up on paperwork, but at the same time this thought keeps running through the back of my mind "Is the economic plunge coming to visit??" And that frightens me!!! I do have several bookings for Thanksgiving & December events, but the daily schedule looks slow. One big event in December has downsized due to layoffs. Guess I'm just thankful they didn't cancel (oh, oh there's a thankful post!!!).
In the meantime, hubby survived the first round of layoffs at his place of work. He works at a business that caters to the airline industry--both public & private--and it has affected them. There will probably be more layoffs, but we'll survive--I have a job all lined out for him--ha ha ha!!!
I really feel sorry for all those laid off -- there is no good time, but this time of year is so devastating for families. I went to one of my regular suppliers this week, and they are closing the public side of their business. Several people are loosing jobs on Nov 24. It makes me sad for them.
I think that we are suffering not only the effects of the recession, but the effects of the national greed. People have been pushed to keep up with the "Joneses" and to do it with credit. (BTW--who ARE these Joneses and why do they do so well???) Hubby & I went through the Dave Ramsey Financial course about 6 years ago--long before the recession was even mentioned, and it made such an impact on our financial security. We conditioned ourselves out of the credit card position--it galls me that credit has been crammed down our throats! It always made me irate to go to college events and see Visa & Mastercard set up ready to sign all the students. Credit had become a way of life for the American people and now we're paying the price. It's hard for me to sympathize with couples who can't make their $4000.00 monthly mortgage payment, or their $500 car payment while both working and spending like there was no end. For 4 years my car was a 93 Jimmy that had no bells or whistles, and didn't look great, but it was paid for AND it got me to my destination as well as a brand spankin new one! Sure I got some rolled eyeballs when I'd pull up into a lot of shiny cars, and when it would make funny noises, but it allowed us to save enough to make a substantial downpayment on a car when it was needed. And then, guess what!!! We DIDN'T buy a new, off the lot car! You know--the kind that drops in value the minute it rolls off the showroom floor! No, we bought a 4 year old car-and I am soooo proud of it. Not to mention that I am proud of the fact that we can make the payment even if our salary drops even more!
Ok, so much for that "moment in time". I just think the majority of Americans have confused "need" and "want".
I had to attend 2 funerals this week, and one of the preachers made a comment that caused me to think. He said something to the affect that we keep talking about the "good old days" and finally he asked someone why the "old" days were so "good". The answer came back that we had more friends, did more family things, weren't so rushed. And he said in this age of technology, where so many inventions have been added to make life easier, we still push ourselves faster and faster! It would seem that we could slow down and let the technology take over! So, I'm thinking about slowing down. Right after I get my "to do" list done! ha ha ha
Well, friends, I have written alot and said nothing, so I'm going to end this "moment in time" and go change the sheets. Then I will go to the "town kitchen" and make 16 dozen sugar cookies for the library tomorrow!
Enjoy the changing colors. Call a friend, visit family---at least have a slow cup of coffee or tea!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Amazing Grace

Did you see the "I'm Thankful" tab in my sidebar? Well, to get the full explanation, click on it and read about it.

So, for my "thankful" beginning, I would like to begin with my church. Today was the celebration of 100 years of the church. We had a super huge (for our little town church) event; over 575 present and former members attended, three former pastors, and various "dignitaries". We celebrated with a luncheon afterwards, centennial cookbooks, DVDs, etc.

Looking back at the pictures of the progression of the church family---those who have gone on to our heavenly home, those who have moved away, those who we've lost touch with, those who still attend--all of this made me so grateful to be a part of this congregation--no! family!

So many lives have been touched, so many children taught, so many musicals and Christmas pagents, so many weddings & funerals, so many just plain ole Sunday mornings. It's sad to think that some don't have the privilege of worshipping as they would like; that some choose to live their lives without the blessing of a church family.

Well, so much could be written about this wonderful day, but (as I catered the event!!!), I'm stopping here for now! More as I digest is all.

Be thankful!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Things That Make Me Go HMMMMM

These are just some random thoughts whilst I wait for a cake to "set" so that I can put the final icing coat on.

Why is it that I could sleep all morning long Monday through Friday, but when Saturday & Sunday arrive, I am up before dawn? Can't go back to sleep so I get up, read the paper, re-read the Sunday School lesson, drink several cups of tea, and wait for the sun. The rest of the week I hit the alarm--snooze 5 more minutes please!

I hate low-rise pants. Can't wait for the style to return to the natural waist! When I was in high school we called them "bell bottoms" and "hip huggers", now they are just "low" and "super low". I wore them in high school, long before the battle of the "overflow". Now, I can only wear them with a top long enough to cover the tummy torment, and then, am uncomfortable all day long as the non-muscles in my torso press down, down, down on the pants. Which results in my pulling them up all day long. That's attractive!

Why do campaigns last so dadgummed long? And why are they so negative? Wouldn't it be great if, just once, a candidate got to the podium and announced "I am only talking about my plans and credentials. I will only tell you what I will do, and how equipped I am" Yea right, like that would happen.

Why does time pass so quickly when you are on a schedule, and so slowly when you are anticipating excitement?

And, now, I must return to my kitchen to finish yet another "work of art". Ha ha ha ha ha

Happy Boo Day!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Halloween's Around The Corner!!!!

Happy Halloween!!! Isn't this a cute card?? Kari @ Just Livin Large made this for ME! I'm so touched--see that's what blog friends do. They think about each other, read to see what's happening and send little remembrances of holidays. At least Kari has the deciency to do that--me? I just think how nice it would be for me to share with others and then I nod off. Thanks Kari--you made my week!

And speaking of the cutest card--this kid is a card allright! He's growing by leaps & bounds. And he has such a sense of humor! I just hate it that I don't get to share in each & every day of his! But, when we do get to see him, I just soak it up like a sponge. We visited his new house Saturday, and he was so excited. He showed us his closet and his underwear drawer. Priorities you know!
I just love to see kittens sleeping. Don't they look comfy and warm? These are Hank's kittens, Stars and Stripes. (Yes, his mom and dad are very American minded! After all his dad IS a Marine!). My mom sent the kittens this bed, and they jumped right in for an afternoon nap. My idea of heaven!!

Yes, Penny the Queen is at it again! My BFF couldn't resist hanging herself in the wreath. Think she'd look cute on my front door??? Our ladies (boring) club had a "wreath sale fundraiser" for student aid (scholarship fund). Everyone was to fashion or purchase a wreath for the sale. This is the one I bought---I was afraid no one else would buy it and I didn't want the lady who made it to feel bad. Isn't that sweet of me??? Now I'll share some of the others we bid on.

This is the wreath I made. It went for a good price, so I wasn't embarrassed. I actually made it. Impressed aren't you!!!

I really, really wanted this one. BFF Penny the Queen made this one---her talents go on and on and on and on. But alas, it went out of my budgeted amount to spend for the evening! It's soooo cute.

And, we had some "general" fall wreaths. This was a popular one.
All of the wreaths were quite pretty, and it was fun bidding against one another. Between 16 ladies we raised over $500 for the college girls we support in our scholarships.
Last week was a BUSY one--I hardly had time to get in the car and come home!! This week I am slowing W A Y down. Hank is coming Thursday for "Trunk or Treat" and he's spending the night.
Sunday I am catering a 100 year celebration of the birthday of my church. Over 550 people have rsvp'd!~ So, I'm focusing most of my energy for that! I have 4 jobs scheduled for the week and that's it---saying NO to the rest of the calls. I'll be shopping, coordinating and baking for Sunday!! Then on Monday, I have a luncheon for 175!
Well, just wanted to share some pics and check in!
Have a Halloweenie week!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

I Love Wedding Receptions!

In my last post, I told you that I was doing a wedding reception on Sunday. And I did! It was held in an old, old house in downtown Tulsa which is now used for events. Wanted to share some photos of the items we provided. Above is how we served the "gourmet" shrimp cocktail--oversized martini glasses!
The bride's colors were blue & brown (duh!), so I asked her for permission to use those colors around the food. She happily agreed, so here's what we did with our limited budget (read $0.00). The flowers were provided, so we just "tweaked" the scene.
The bride had napkins left from showers, so we wrapped the eating utensils & used them as decor!

Another martini glass with hummus & veggies. Wish I had taken alot more pics--I did take a few more, but didn't want to overload your visual senses!!!
The bride & family were really pleased with our work--even tipped us! Whoopee!!! Then, come Tuesday, back to our routine lunch deliveries!! I really like doing wedding, anniversaries, birthdays, especially when we are allowed to join the decor! I'm going to enhance my website with some of my pictures. Maybe I'll get to do more decorating along with the food!!!
And, as it's now late, I'll close and wish you SWEET DREAMS!!!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Pumpkins & Parties

Do you like my pumpkins??? I saw this idea in a magazine (good grief, I have sooo many I don't remember which one), and thought they were quite cute. But I have to admit---I CHEATED!!!! The one I saw had been painted, and I wanted a "short cut". So---I used a permanent marker!! Dried quick as a flash and looks just as good! And, yes, that is an old container on the sideboard--oops! That's what we get Abby's food from the garage in to put in her bowl. I completely forgot it was there when I snapped this!
Now, I am fully aware that I left the school 6 weeks ago (my how time flies!!!), but one of my dear ex-co-workers (and dear friend) just gave me some pictures she took that last day. I wanted to share them with you to give you an idea of how nice that bunch of people are! I think I posted about the flowers I got on a previous post, but aren't they just too pretty?
This is a picture of two dear friends. On your left (in white shirt) is a dear friend who has shared many memories with me. She lived across the street from us, her daughter babysat for my kids, and I have spent many, MANY Saturday nights at her kitchen table playing cards. We even took a "neighborhood" trip to Hawaii together ages ago. We've been through alot together and I love her dearly. The one on your right (in blue shirt) is a childhood friend and soul sister!!! She's the gal I began catering with. Tho I am older than she is, we grew up on the same street, worked for the same dentist, go to church together, and ended up at the same office! Our in-laws were bestest friends too. She is the one who took my place, so now she sits in my old office. She's a hoot, tons of fun, and a dear dear person to know. And know what?? My daughter babysat for her daughter!
Now these two gals are two workers I couldn't image not having known!! The one in the Code Red (football jargon) is quite a bit younger than I, so even tho we are both from the same area, I didn't get to know her until she came to work. And she is one fun gal!!! She kept me sane the entire time I was working with her. And smart! She can do any job you put in front of her. She kept us in stitches each and every day. And the one with the floral shirt? She is one of the truly kindest, most genuine people I have ever had the pleasure to know. I wish I could have been around her forever and ever! She is married to a sweetheart of a guy and they have the two cutest (grown) daughters I have ever seen! I miss all of these gals. So every now and again, I have to stop in and say a quick "hi" and keep in touch with them.

So tomorrow I have a wedding reception--this is one I will be staying and serving for, and decorating the food table. I'll be taking some pictures of this one to share with you. The bride is so sweet--we met the other day to go over details. Poor thing--she learned just a couple of weeks back that the business had sold. Can you imagine thinking you have booked one caterer only to find out it's someone you have no knowledge of!!! So, I want to really knock her socks off with this reception. And she has a wedding coordinator, so I want him to get an idea of my "good" work. This could lead to further jobs!!

With all the economic fears, I have been a little concerned about what it would do to my business. But it seems to be staying busy, and I have already booked some holiday events. So, maybe the recession will arrive here after it's over--ha ha ha!!!

Just a few thoughts from my Saturday!

Have a good day--relax and read a magazine! Christmas is just down the lane.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

New Friends~~~

Have you made new blog friends??? I love hearing from others out there in "blog world" and, after checking a comment left on the previous post, now have a new blog friend---and she's just down the road in another town nearby!! So, Carol, if you are reading---I, too, am a 50 something gal, who worked in the public educational system before jumping into the unknown world of catering. One of these days I'm going to learn how to "link" others on my page and I'll send you to some of these sweeties sites. In the meantime, if you would like to read Carol's gorgeous blog, go to my comment page and travel the links!!!

October has GOT to be my favorite month (and not just because it's my birthday month--no hint intended). I love the colors associated with the fall--the oranges, browns, golds, and such. And I love Halloween. I don't believe that letting children dress up and enjoy this holiday will turn them into broom riding witches!!! Or mess with their minds to the point they become worshippers of the underworld!!! I, myself, dressed up each and every Halloween until I was, oh, 30 or 40--still do if given the opportunity! And I am a staunch believer and follower of Jesus Christ. So there---urban legend busted!! I'm celebrating the wonder of childhood, the community of friends, the joy of giving, and the awe of make believe. I think some of what is wrong with society today is we have put our own childhood ways toooo far behind. We need to let our hair down and have some fun--pretend--wear mom's make up & dress up--eat candy--share treats with others---

Wait just a second while I climb down off my soapbox-----

There, enough of that ranting. I just HAD to speak my mind for a moment.

Now, I have to get back to my reality life and clean up a bit, make a cake, fix a tasting dish and meet a client.

Please enjoy the sights of this season, enjoy this cool weather and give out some candy!

Have a great day!!!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Owww Owww OOO Ouch!!!

If this is the backside of a "hurting" tooth, then it is mine! Yesterday, as I drove home from the grocery store, I reached into my purse, took out a piece of sugar free SOFT gum, unwrapped the stick, slipped it into my mouth and WHAM!!!! Boulders!!! The first small "chew" and BOULDERS came tumbling onto my tongue. My first thought was "what the heck . . . . ". I immediately stopped the chewing, and luckily, I was the only car at a stop sign, so I spit the entire contents of my mouth into my hand. Jeepers!!! There was the gum and two ginormous pieces of something white and hard! It took a moment for it to sink in-----that was my TOOTH!!! I just sat there looking at the pieces, trying to make sense of it all. Finally, I ran my tongue over that area and OUCH--jagged edges!!! The remaining tooth didn't hurt, but the jagged edge sliced through my tongue.
Now, several years ago, I worked as a dental assistant, so I knew a bit about what to look for in the mirror. And it wasn't there!!! The molar had broken off on the inside all the way down to the gumline. And from distal to meisial. You dentistry people know that means front to back!! And it wasn't good!!!
Got on the cell phone immediately (thank goodness for cell phones!! I would have missed the slot just cancelled by a previous patient), and called Dr. Bobby. They got me in today at 8:00 a.m. That's a horrid time for a dental appointment! First thing in the morning----a way to start the day.
The receptionist said (when I called) that Dr. Bobby wouldn't have time to do much more than look at it and put some temporary filler in. Which suited me just fine. I have to work up to getting the numbing stick and the drilling that goes along with it.
But at 8:00 a.m. this morning they had time to do it. OMG -- I wasn't psyched up for this. I could feel my heart racing and my stomach churning!!! Dr. Bobby asked if I wanted gas. ABSOLUTELY!!! And lots of it!!! Turn it on full blast and come back in an hour!!! Float me away long before you touch my lips!!!
Anywh0--I am now a "crowned" lady. Well, a temporary lady actually! I love crowns and queenly things, but this was not the type I envisioned. I'd rather spend my monthly wages on a tiara that doesn't have to be viewed with open mouth!!! I'd rather spend that money on Christmas toys!!! But that isn't the way it's to be this month!!! I have now invested more in my mouth than in my IRA ( cause I don't have an IRA--ha ha ha).
Just thought I'd update you on what a fun 2 1/2 hours I had this morning. And really---I wouldn't recommend this fun for anyone out there looking for fun!!!
Have a good evening-----

Monday, October 6, 2008

300 Crowns !!!

Crowns, crowns and more crowns!!! My neice had a sorority sister running for homecoming queen--wanted cookies to hand out as a campaign goodie--and GUESS WHO THEY ASKED TO MAKE THEM!!!

So last Monday & Tuesday am, in between deliveries, we made and frosted these cookies. I don't know if she won or not. But, hey, it was PR right?????

This past week wasn't the nightmare of past weeks, but I did have one 50th anniversary reception and two wedding receptions to deliver food to on Saturday. The anniversary was at 1:00, the first reception at 5:30 and the second at 7:00---miles apart!! Somehow, it was successful!!! Well, the "somehow" was having my sister and mom to help all evening Friday and all day Saturday. And hubby dearest was there the entire time also--doing whatever he was asked. We had to stay at the anniversary event, so hubby finished that up and cleaned up for me while I high-tailed it back to the kitchen to prep and finalize cooking for the other two. One we had hot hors d'oeuvres and one was a three course meal--Chicken Alfredo w/Penne Pasta, Hawaiin Chicken w/Rice Pilaf, Brisket w/BBQ Sauce, two salads, one veg dish and bread. Whew! Am I glad to have that behind me.

I did make an executive decision and am taking not just Monday but Tuesday off also!!! Have already booked for Wed! Somehow I HAVE to get my OWN house cleaned and decorated!!! I look at other homes (as I'm driving around with food to deliver) and LONG for a time to take care of mine!!! So these next two days are it!!! It's now or NEVER!!!

On another note, daughter & family moved into their home. They had been living in an "efficiency garage" for the past 1 1/2 year--Hank has been sleeping in his "toddler" bed next to theirs, and his toys have been in the living room. All their "stuff " has been in storage---needless to say, they feel like freed birds!!! I can't wait to take hubby down to see the final result. Maybe next weekend!!

I read about Tuesday Update's pumpkin chocolate chip muffins. Penny the Queen made them, so now I am going to look up her recipe and make them tonight!!!

Well, blog friends, I MUST get to work on this house. I feel like I have been "out of the loop" with both cyber friends and nearby friends. Like I've been on an island somewhere with a kitchen and food. Which is what I wanted, I just didn't realize that it would "consume" my life!!! And it will til after the first of the year. All the holiday inquiries are coming in, and I have to get letters out to my "regs". So, I'll be checking in now and again. I do, however, take time to read your posts---and I love them sooo much. Keeps me grounded!!!

Have a great week!

Just checked w/Penny the Queen--these looked interesting so I'm adding them: Answer w/one word:

1. Where is your cell phone? Here

2. Where is your significant other? Work

3. Your hair color? Lt brown

4. Your mother? Home

5. Your father? Out & About

6. Your favorite thing? Family

7. Your dream last night? ??

8. Your dream/goal? Be home

9. The room you're in? Living

10. Your hobby? Crafting

11. Your fear? Loss

12. Where do you want to be in 6 years? Home

13. Where were you last night? Home

14. What you're not? Patient

15. One of your wish-list items? No payments

16. Where you grew up? Collinsville

17. The last thing you did? Phone

18. What you are wearing? sleepers

19. Your TV? on

20. Your pet? Cat & dog

21. Your computer? Dell

22. Your mood? Tired

23. Missing someone? Kids

24. Your car? Chevy

25. Something you are not wearing? Bra

26. Favorite store? Bookstore

27. Your summer? Decisive

28. Love someone? Lots

29. Your favorite color? Black

30. When is the last time you laughed? Sunday

31. Last time you cried? ???

Monday, September 29, 2008

Kitchen Capers & Weekend Wonders!

Well, thankfully, the past week was a busy one! It's normal to have no bookings on Monday morning (and panic sets in) and then by Tuesday be completely full for the week. Last week followed that pattern. It's a roller coaster ride of orders and calls, worry that there aren't enough orders and then worry that one has taken on way too much! However, Friday evening I delivered the last meal for the weekend.

Thought I would have the entire weekend to catch up on housework and laundry. BUT on Thursday my dear daughter called and asked if I would accompany her and Hank to OKC to the "Thomas The Train" ride. Well of course! I absolutely WOULD get up at 5:00 a.m. and leave the house at 6:00 a.m. so that I could arrive at her house at 7:00 a.m. and travel to OKC to be there by 9:00 a.m.!!!!!

On a side note---the traveling Thomas the Train "Day Out With Thomas" is one of the biggest rip offs I have encountered! It was held at the train museum in OKC (although it does travel around the USA). Think about this----take an OLD train that the museum owns, slap a picture of Thomas on the front, travel 15 minutes north and back 15 minutes south and charge $18.00 a person to ride. Sound like a way to pull the kids out of the woodwork??? Yes it did! And, of course, there was the obligatory gift shop---right up front and center so kids can't possibly pass by without screaming and crying for a Thomas toy. That was by far the biggest tent. Oh there was a tent with train tables set up for kids to play with for no charge, and a tent gave ONE Thomas tatoo per child for no charge, and balloon animals. And even a place to have one's picture taken with a giant plastic (rather scary) Sir Topham Hatt. But if you wanted a picture with the Thomas picture slapped on the front of the old --silver I might add-- train, it cost you a whopping $5.00! And all those parents racing around trying to appease the little ones as they bumped and pushed and shoved from one tent to another! The train table tent was a nightmare -- kids couldn't get to the tables for the parents gathered around to take a picture of little ones picking up the train toys and taking them away from each other! Poor kids!

So, back from daughter's house in time to see my son and his new friend in town playing tennis. Oh yea--Hank came home to spend the night!!!

Then at 4:00 off to a wedding reception for hubby's cousin who was married in Hawaii last week. Now, we HAD to go to this one cause this is the first marriage for his cousin (who is 48), and he married his high school sweetheart. She had been married, moved off, divorced and moved back --seeking him out. Let me tell ya--it was something---something I don't want to repeat. It was held in a town smaller than the one where I live (it's almost a ghost town--no school, no bank, just a post office, couple of churches and small, small, small grocery). I think there were about 25 people there. Hmmmmm

After the "royal reception" had to make a kitchen run to prep food for Sunday. Why? Did I have a delivery??? NO -- a family reunion on Sunday afternoon. My dad's mother's side of the family. It's rather sad, we have dwindled down to about 40--the older ones are passing on, and many of the younger ones are "too busy" to participate. There are some diehards, like my first cousins (3 girls), and a couple of second cousins and their adult kids. But the past two years, my cousin (who is also an oldest child and a "director" type like myself--no we AREN'T bossy!!!), have coordinated games and doorprizes to entice attendance. Last year we played bunco for games. This year we had a game planned, but it didn't happen, so we raffled off the prize for "reunion money" and had great results. We also had centerpieces we gave away.

I wish I had taken pictures of the centerpieces---my sister, mom and I photocopied old pictures of family members and glued them onto mailing tags. Of course, we labled the back with names, and decorated them with stickers. Then we tied them to branches spray painted white, and secured the branches in terra cotta wine coolers with floral foam and covered the foam with glass beads. What a hit! Even my younger cousin whose name was drawn was delighted to win one and said she was putting it right by her fireplace! We're looking into reunion T shirts for next year!

Then to the kitchen to show off the place to my cousins and work on some paperwork.

Now I know what you're thinking but -- YES I did attend church! I taught my Sunday School class of young adults and had such a good time this Sunday morning. The good Lord really invited us to discuss matters we had been faced with this summer--death of a young teen ager, death of a member, divorce of two members--and it seemed to relieve alot of unanswered worries. We all got really honest and personal, and looked to scripture for truths. What a blessing.

And I DID attend Sunday evening Bible study. It calms me to be in fellowship with the church family and to study God's word together.

I was going to sleep in this morning--at least til 7:00 a.m., but the dog started barking at 6:00, something (like a leaf) moved on the back porch and she just HAD to alert me. I needed protected!!! Oh well, I have so much to do today she actually did me a favor. And now that I'm up, I have time to get more done!!!

So, how did your weekend go??

Are you ready for Halloween??? I want to get the decor out this morning and get knee deep in the mood! I love Halloween and don't want it to pass me by this year! And, besides, Hank's coming to spend Halloween with us---I'm making him a pirate costume so I'd better devote some time to that also!!!

Hey---have a great day today----

Sunday, September 21, 2008

What's The Deal?????

Much of my new job description is travel---delivering breakfasts and lunches to surrounding communities. Mainly to the Tulsa area. And I have had such a revelation---speed limits are only guides. They mean NOTHING.
Last Friday I had to go and pick up chafing dishes in the downtown area before making a delivery at 7:00 a.m. I travel around 30 miles one way to this area. So, leaving at 6:15 a.m. I hit the nearest highway, and zoom-zoom-zoom---suddenly I am on the motobaun! The speed limit is posted at 65 miles per hour. That is obviously just a suggested speed. If you travel at the posted speed limit, other cars fly around you at such speeds as to make your headlights spin! And if they get behind you, and have to travel for more than 30 seconds, you can count on being ridden on the bumper. Which can be quite jolting if you gaze into the rear view mirror at sunrise. The sight of headlights in one's back seat can cause one's heart to jump in fear!!! If it takes more than 30 seconds to pass you, these superspeeders have been known to tap the horn as in "would you PLEASE go faster!!! When they can finally pass, you can be certain you won't get the good morning smile! Usually the face made is a grimacing frown!!! So why have speed limits???? Is it part of a game to see who can get there first while avoiding the black and white? And where in heaven's name IS the black and white at that time of day??? The highways are full---FULL---and what an opportune time to hand out those tickets they so adore passing out! Guess it's too much work to try to figure out WHICH ONE will receive the ticket of the morn! Or maybe fresh donuts are too much of a temptation -- and hold the attention for much of the morning. (oops that was quite a generalization)
Truthfully, I don't see much of a change at any time of day I am on the road. It's just been so dadgummed obvious lately. Guess that as I only had to travel 2 miles for the past 16 years to work, I didn't see how traffic etiquette had changed. Certainly didn't have to exceed 25 mph to get to work on time. And as I plan deliveries carefully, I usually am not in a hurry. But the rest of the world is! And I just don't understand posting one speed but allowing 20-25 mph over that. I don't know---just griping!!!
I overbooked last Thursday and it just about ate my lunch! And then I was quite busy on Friday and Saturday, and Hank came to spend the night Friday so off to the football game we went. Then on Sat his mom and dad decided they would just stay here also. So, after delivering a dinner at 5:30 on Sat, and a quick run to Sam's for supplies, daughter dearest and I picked her hubby up at school and headed over to Cracker Barrel for dinner. Got home at 8:15 and back to the kitchen to clean and prep for a Sunday delivery. Up Sunday, cook and deliver at 11:30, then back here for a birthday dinner for Big Daddy. Then took daughter & Hank to their car and back to see son and his gal pal. I will work any "odd" hours if it means I can spend time with the kids.
The good news??? I have the morning off!!! Yea!!! I actually get, yes I said GET, to clean, do laundry, and get the Halloween decor ready. Then to the kitchen after noon and prep for Tues. Plus I have got to do paperwork and get taxes ready!!!
My oh my, I never dreamed I'd be this busy or work this hard physically! Or love it so much!!! I did take time to do the Sunday crossword. Love that crossword. And doesn't that keep the brain active and alert?? I need that!!!
Well, I'm signing off for now. More from the kitchen later!!!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Happy Birthday to my Sweetie!

Today is hubby's birthday!! Double nickle! Have you ever sat back and wondered how today got here so quickly???? I remember waaayyyy back when we were first married, without kids, and how we thought this day would never get here! It sneaks up, creeps in and BOOM it's here. I'm my mother's age when I thought she was "older"! And we certainly don't FEEL older -- well, at least in our minds. So happy birthday my best friend and love.

Today was the day I needed to be reminded that I am doing what I love--like---asked for! I overbooked for the morning. What a lesson to learn the hard way!! I should have seen the red flag as I opened the door to the kitchen this morning and spilled my tea all over myself. I should have seen it coming when I kept saying "sure I can work that in". Well, to make a long, LONG story shorter--I had three deliveries to make: one at 10:45, one at 11:15, and one at 11:30. Got to the first delivery and discovered all the salads and desserts were still in the kitchen. My stomach churned. What to do, what to do. Thank goodness for my father-in-law. I rang the house and told my mother-in-law it was an emergency, what had happened and to send him quicker than quick! She pulled him out of the shower, told him I had an emergency and sent him on his way. Luckily the first delivery was only 10 miles down the road. So, after setting up the first one, drove like a bat out of @#(@ to the next. Got it all taken care of. But I won't EVER book like that again. I have already turned down 2 for tomorrow! Never again!!! I don't care how large the debt I have to repay. It's not worth a nervous breakdown and upchucking!!!

Now I have one delivery tomorrow--2 cakes to finish--8 dozen sugar cookies to bake, and sandwiches to deliver in the afternoon. Not overbooking again!

And Saturday I will deliver the sugar cookies, and then I have a three entree, two salad and cake dinner to deliver at 6:00. And Sunday, a dinner for 70 at a church in Tulsa. Entree, 2 sides, salad, and pies---and cobblers!!! Not overbooking again!!!

Sunday afternoon we are having dinner at in-laws for hubby's birthday. Then I am going to collapse!

Oh, and did I mention that Hank is spending the night tomorrow night????? My mom is keeping him during the day tomorrow so I can cook and shop, and then I'll pick him up and take him with me to deliver at 5:00---might as well break him in early!!!

When hubby & I got married, he and his family owned their own business---they built pleasure/ski boats. For over 30 years, we were used to owning and working in a family business. Then when my kids were very small, I had my own ceramic shop---rented space, poured and fired, had all the equipment. After closing the boat business, hubby has worked at two different jobs. But my father-in-law has groomed us all (grandkids included) that owning one's own business is the ultimate. So, here we are again--working as family at a business. Of course, it's not as lucrative as the boating industry was, but the family is working towards a common goal.

Funny how life goes isn't it? And, as I drove madly from one delivery to another today, I kept thinking "this must be a sign from God that I am not to be doing this" but then I remembered the words from Randy Pausch that I love "brick walls aren't there to stop us, but to prove to us how much we really want something". How much do I want this? Well, this isn't a good time to ask---I'm drained! So maybe after a good night's rest I'll see things more clearly. Or more optimistically!!! Or more enthusiastically.

Have a good evening---get some rest!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Cupcakes To Go!!!

Got a call from a gal who wanted cupcakes---cupcakes decorated as one cake, and that look like Spiderman! So, with no pattern, and no idea what I was going to do, this is what it turned out like. She liked the finished job--said the kids could just "grab and go" and wouldn't need plates. Ok, works for me. I wasn't thrilled with the final result, but she liked it, and that's what matters!!

Saturday Hank and Ashley came to visit. Seems Ryan had a huge amount of studying to do and they didn't want to stay in their little "pod" while it rained all day, so they came to town and we went to the mall! Fun time.

We had dinner at my sister's house Saturday evening---my contribution you ask??? Baked herbed chicken breasts and ---how'd you know??---leftover cupcakes!

Today we went to ShalomFest at Temple Israel. My son & his new gal pal wanted to experience the event and food, so we loaded up and joined them. It was good---I like Middle Eastern food. But I have to admit that I like the Lebanese version of the foods much better---they have more flavor and garlic! Bought a t-shirt that says "Shalom Y'All"--now isn't that just cute? And, of course, a Temple Israel cookbook. It has many Israeli recipes in it, but we got a kick out of the "enchilada" and "banana smoothie" recipes. And the "Chinese Chicken Salad". That's just not right! Guess you have to fill the pages with something---and, after all, the Jewish community is not secluded anymore. They have integrated themselves into the various communities into which they have moved over the years. Who thought there would be Jewish Okies????? There are definitely recipes from Israel that I will be trying.

This next week looks like it will be EXHAUSTING!!! Have something on the books everyday---and on Thursday-----well let's just say I came this close to overbooking!!! I have to have my father-in-law deliver two of the lunches whilst I deliver 3 others!!! See what I mean? I'm not--repeat NOT--taking any more orders for Thursday, Friday or Saturday. I'm learning my limits---bills or no bills. A person can only be so productive and do it well.

Gotta run for now---everyone have a safe evening!! Shalom!!!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Kitchen Capers

Week # 2 has almost come to a close---my second full week of being an honest to goodness gracious caterer!!! And, I still love it!!!
This morning I had to be in Tulsa at 6:30 AM!!! AM!!! Do you know what time I had to get up this morning??? No???? Try 3:45!!!! AM!!! My cat thought I had gone bonkers. He just sat on the end of the bed and stared at me with his sleepy kitty eyes. He seemed to be imploring me to "please come back to bed"! Finally he gave up the starefest and went back to sleep---I don't even think he knew I had left til I came back by the house at 11:00!
I delivered breakfast to a company for 10 execs. A business meeting breakfast. Oh I love being on this side of the work force!! They had a breakfast casserole, yogurt (no I didn't culture that!!!), a fruit tray ( it was pretty), bacon and ----- HOMEMADE biscuits!!! I had never made biscuits before, and had already purchased some "commercial" frozen ones, but then the guilt sat in. I found a recipe in our church cookbook (the person who submitted it is a big ole gal, so I figured they'd be pretty darn good) and gave it a go. They were yummy!!! I had a couple left over, and sent them home with my dad this afternoon. He called while ago to tell me how good they were----hours old and cold!!! So the execs MUST have enjoyed them!
That was all I had to deliver today, so after making a Sam's run, I went back, mopped the floor, and made a couple of pies. Sent a coconut cream one to my father-in-law (he's been delivering meals for me), and had a piece of a chocolate one, then took a couple of pieces to my mom & dad, and called Penny the Queen and told her to stop my--I had something she needed!!! Just sent it to her house. We'll all be roly polys if I'm not restrained!!!
I only have one delivery tomorrow---a wedding reception for 75 here in town. And most of that work is done. Hopefully I can get some correspondence out, and tweek my kitchen's website. And take a nap!!!
Well lovelies, I'd best get this flour out of my hair, my eyebrows, my nostrils, etc., etc.
Have a cozy night!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Mountains of Meringue

After delivering the meals for today & tomorrow to the tennis club, I came back to get ready for the meal for tomorrow! Another 7am-7pm day!!! (Repeat after me, Pam, I like this--I wanted this---I love to cook). Seriously, I am having a great time!! My sister went with me to deliver today, and at the tennis club we ran into some old friends. Small world!! Then we went to a new shoe store and I bought a pair of shoes---like I will ever have time to wear them! They are DEFINITELY NOT work shoes.

So, after getting back here's what I did: (and this is for 50 people) Mandarin Orange Salad, Hot Rolls, Green Beans, Party Potatoes, Beef Brisket, and
(drum roll please!), 6 HOMEMADE cream pies--no pudding here--not even the cook and serve. No Way! These are "scratch" pies on "scratch" crust. 2 lemon meringue, 2 coconut meringue and 2 chocolate meringue! And then I made 2 fresh strawberry pies!! This after 20 cobblers for the tennis club today!!!

Hubby helped me in the kitchen today, and after I finished with the bowl for the chocolate pie, I left some in and told him he could have it. He said "Boy those people will have their tongues slapping against their lips to get this down!!" and then I looked around, and as he was taking his finger and skimming out the last bit of chocolate he said "I'm trying to figure out how to get my face down into this bowl" ! He was cracking me up!!! Now you see why I enjoy him helping out?? That plus he loves to cook and he likes the "commercial" dishwasher. He'll do a load and announce "Another full load in less than 2 minutes!". He's a sweetie pie. (No pun intended)

I have gotten some of the sweetest cards from some of the people I worked with at school. Some that I wouldn't have even thought cared! Just goes to show--if you treat people with dignity and friendship, they remember! I have always tried to get along with everyone else--life is just too danged short to feel mad or any other way but happy---and since I'm the one in control of my own happiness---I choose to be happy !!!

And sappy!!! Sorry about that left turn!

Anyway--the feet are a bit tired tonight, and I have magazines stacked up to look through. And the sofa is calling my name!

So all of you have a great Sunday and I'll keep you up on the wonderful world of catering!!!

Friday, September 5, 2008

My New Kitchen--(or, where my life is now!!!)

This is where I spend my mornings, noons, and nights!! These, of course, are chafing dishes--gives a new meaning to a "stainless steel" kitchen!!!
This is the "project" board. It holds jobs for a week at a time, and when that day is finished it is erased. This shows Sat & Sun jobs I have. Today we prepped all the salad stuff for Sat--100 people both days, three salad choices each day, cobbler each day and bread each day. And all delivered by 11:00 tomorrow morning!! Needless to say, I was on my feet ALL DAY today!
Here's my new office! I used to have a rather professional looking office at the school, but I have to say, I like this one better!!
All the dry goods & the ice maker! Lots of staples, lots of seasonings. But we have to replenish quite frequently!!

I'll stop here. I have some more pics to share, but right now, my feet are throbbing and I just want to recline on the sofa!! Hubby is at the home opener football game, so I don't even have to talk to anyone!

And would you believe I'm having Cheerios for supper!!! Hey if Seinfield can so can I!!!

Have a great Friday evening!

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Adventures in Catering--Day 1

Man oh man oh man!!!! This has been one heck of a day!! Got to the kitchen at 6 this morning, and we had only one lunch to prepare & deliver. And it was a salad bar, so it wasn't much work at all.

Then, as we were picking up supplies, got 2 calls for tomorrow!!! And we had one on the calendar. So, we shopped for food, went back and prepped all that we could, made bread dough, made pies for Friday, and cleaned up. At 4:30 we left for the day!!!

I am quite tired. No, I am REALLY tired!! Most of the work for tomorrow is finished, but there is prep for Thursday. If we get too many for Friday, I think I'll call in sick--ha ha ha.

What is on the menu for tomorrow? Creole Chicken over rice, Herb Roasted Chicken, Italian Green Salad, Napa Cabbage Salad, Green Beans, Homemade Bread, Italian Cream Cake, Strawberry Cake, and Banana Pudding!!!!! We will have served 96 people. In three different locations!!

Anywho--it is an experience. And I am enjoying it (grimace face---yes, I am!!!). Hopefully it will get smoother and a bit easier--dare I think that?????

But on Thursday I shouldn't have to go in at 6---probably will start late, you know, like 7!!!

I'll keep you posted!!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Please Pray for My Friend

Hey everybody--please pray for a friend of mine, JeanAnn. She lost her 14 year old daughter to cancer in July of this year, and she is having a very difficult time. I am sure she is going through the grieving process, but she needs prayer to hold on. She has two younger sons, and works at the school, but yesterday in Sunday School, a couple who are very close to her expressed their concern for her. And asked for prayer. If you want to read her desperation, go to and type in Mackenzie Sunday. It tells her daughter's story. In the "journal" side, JeanAnn posted last Thursday evening. You can feel her pain, and her overwhelming grief.

As I said, there are so so many who have gone through this before her, and agree that this is part of the process, but I would just like to reinforce her recovery with prayer. Haley's mother (from Owasso) sent JeanAnn the nicest email, and I hope they can make contact with one another. Haley lived only 10 or 15 miles south of us.

Anyway, that's all I have to post for now. And I appreciate your prayers so very much.

Have a great week, and remember to be thankful for the blessings you have in the here and now.