Monday, June 10, 2019

10 Summer Must Haves

How can it possibly be Monday again? Before I knew it, it was Saturday evening and for the first time in forever (or so it seems!), we had no plans. We gathered up Baby Girl and headed out for burgers and ice cream! 

Today I'm sharing 10 Summer Must Haves along with Jen and lots of other bloggers at The Bolin Bunch. My list wasn't that hard to put together because it's more or less all the things that I'm loving right now. 


1. A great book. I highly recommend Daisy Jones & The Six for your summer reading pleasure. It's the best book I've read so far and you will love it! You can see my summer reading book list by visiting this post

2. A comfortable pair of flip flops. I have a pair of Michael Kors and they are about fours years old, but y'all! They are the most comfortable pair of flip flops I've ever owned! So worth the splurge!  

3. A good pool float. If you are a happy pool owner, then you have to have a really nice pool float. I'm not talking about a swan or pink flamingo, because we've had those in the past, too (for Alise and her friends), but I'm talking about a "mom's only" pool float with a cup holder and pillow top. I enjoy our pool so much more now since I finally found THE float! 

4. Fun straws. Thanks to my blog friend, Tanya, I am especially loving the 3D drinking straws.  They are so fun for the summer time and just the perfect little happy to add to that perfect pool drink. 

5. A go to appetizer for last minute invites. I cannot stress this enough. We invite friends over at the last minute and our friends like to do the same. Don't be left guessing what to bring or fix. Stick with two or three app ideas (the easier the better!), always have the ingredients on hand, and there ya go! You're ready for that last minute cookout! I recently shared some ideas in this post.

6. A laid back attitude. Duh, right? A slower routine during summer is so relaxing, isn't it? I'll admit. I'm a totally different Mama in the summer time! 

7. A summer nail polish. Some of my favorites are Cajun Shrimp, Strawberry Margarita, and Funny Bunny, all by OPI and a relaxing pedicure is just icing on the cake. 

8. A super cute crossbody bag. What can I say? I drank the round, rattan crossbody bag kool aid (with my fun drinking straw! Ha!) and bought THE purse of the season! They are all over the place! I got mine at Stein Mart, but be sure to look on Amazon for all the styles. 

9. A favorite ice cream flavor. Mine is chocolate chip. We also like to make homemade ice cream and some of our favorites are peach, Oreo, and Butterfinger. But THIS summer, I've introduced chocolate chip cookie sandwiches to the Fam and they are LOVING them!  I can't keep them in the freezer!   

10. Sunglasses. I'm a cheap sunglasses girl.  I don't buy expensive ones because I simply can't keep up with them! The pair I'm wearing now are actually from the dollar store, if you can believe that. 

Have a great week, Friends! 

Friday, June 07, 2019

Summer Tiered Tray

I know the "official" start date to summer is coming up, but actually, my tiered tray has been ready for weeks!! I decided to go with a theme that would last for the entire season and that meant including all the things that I love about summer! 
Most of my summer stash came from Hobby Lobby and I paid at least a 40% mark down, or even less, than normal prices. You gotta love that! 

I'm a very patriotic girl. I love my country and so there was no question that I would have a tiered tray for summer without sporting the red, white, and blue. You may recognize the yellow vase and daisies from my Easter tray. I just stuck in some smaller flags and knew that I still wanted it to be my freedom topper. You'll see other patriotic pieces sprinkled in, too. 

As for the little man and his grill, that is actually a salt and pepper shaker set! I thought it was perfect for the fact that we enjoy grilling and entertaining friends during the summer. And, of course, Father's Day in June! 
I may be patriotic, but I'm a southern belle, too, and that means the mighty magnolia is dear to my heart. Magnolias remind me of wedding season. When Wayne and I got married twenty-four years ago, they were very popular for decorating churches and reception areas. Of course I still had to include my Love bead from my dear friend, Lisa, and pink flamingos just scream summer to me. 
My big orange starfish reminds me of all our beach trips and sunflowers were always my late Father-in-law's favorite flower. He use to plant rows and rows of them for opening day of quail (or was it dove? I can't remember!) season in September. I think about the long, hot days of late July and August in Louisiana when I see them.

I still have a few empty spaces on my tray so I'll be adding a few things throughout summer when I come across them. I'm specifically on the hunt for something to do with ice cream, watermelon, and lemonade. That's what's so fun about these crazy tiered trays! It's the thrill of finding all the "things." 

Happy Summer, Friends!  I hope yours is the best!

Monday, June 03, 2019

Happy Birthday, Kellyann!

I simply could not let this Monday pass without wishing my beautiful friend, Kellyann, the HAPPIEST BIRTHDAY evah! We actually got the chance to meet "for real" last fall on our #Nashbash trip and we became fast friends! Kellyann is so much fun to hang out with and her laugh is contagious. She is full of wisdom and kindness, and so genuine that I am truly blessed to call her one of my very best friends. 
If you are not following Kellyann on her blog, This Blonde's Shopping Bag, or on Instagram - especially her stories! - you are certainly missing out on all the fun! This Florida Girlie moves her mirror to her front porch most days to share her outfit of the day and I just think that is so fun and original (and she may have inspired me to do the same by our pool last week!). She takes you along with her to all the cool restaurants and sites in Orlando, and even shares how she wears and styles her hair topper! 
We are always complimenting Kellyann when she wears pink.  It is definitely her "signature color." 
Happy Birthday, Kellyann!  I hope your day is filled with lots of happiness and love! 
In other news, our weekend was all about family and I loved every minute of it, even though I wasn't feeling that great (my ears are still bothering me).  Wayne and I kicked off the weekend Friday night with a small charcuterie board and Mardi Gras Dip by the pool while Alise swam laps. After her swim, we ate cardboard pizza and I made brownies out of box. We had brownie ala modes while we watched a movie with Baby Girl. She had requested a family movie night, so that's what we did! 

Saturday was a perfect pool day! I finished a book while floating on my raft. My brother came in town and we had crawfish at my parents' house that evening! Daddy didn't want to bother with boiling them, so he bought them already cooked and seasoned and they were perfect! The cousins played waffle ball until dark. It was a great #louisianasaturdaynight with family!
We slept in on Sunday and when my fourteen year old daughter decided to finally get up for the day - after noon! (much to her daddy's dismay. He is so much like his own daddy it's pathetic!) - she and I went to see Aladdin with just about every other three and four year old in our city!! The theater was busy, but the movie was really good! 
I made my second attempt at potato salad - ever! - last night and it turned out pretty darn good! Wayne was craving ribs, so he smoked some and I made potato salad and baked beans.  That's some good eatin', y'all! 

I'll be honest. I'm a little anxious for this first week of June. For those of you that have been reading my blog, you remember that I broke my foot and was on crutches for the entire summer of 2015. And, of course, last year, Wayne had his heart attack on June 5th. He has an appointment later this week with his cardiologist. My best friend faces her first wedding anniversary without the love of her life. This week is going to be tough. Thank you for your prayers. 

Saturday, June 01, 2019

A Sentence A Day ~ May 2019

I don't normally post on Saturdays, but this is one for our family scrapbook. May is always such a busy month for us, but we hit it hard and SURVIVED!!  Isn't that what it's all about sometimes? Now we are definitely ready for the lazy days of summer. Bring it!
1. Daddy had Awards Day duties.
2. Spring Sports Banquet. Alise was recognized for highest number of assists and the most minutes played for the 2018-2019 basketball season.

3. I took a mental health day from work and had lunch with my bestie. Even had time for a pedi.

4. Alise partied with her friends.
5. Our Cinco de Mayo party was SO MUCH FUN!!

6. Meghan and Harry are parents!!

7. Wayne put the mirror back up in Alise's freshly painted bathroom. Update coming soon when my soon-to-be fourteen year old decides if she wants blush or turquoise accents. 

8. We had a rather crazy evening of weather with tornado warnings and heavy rain. I picked Alise up from church early because I was so worried about driving in it (I take after my paternal grandmother when it comes to storms!).

9. Saw two snakes and two Canadian geese on my walk tonight. I had left my phone at the house so I didn't get pics. 

10. Friday night family night means brownie ala modes! Yum! 
11. Birthday Party for Baby Girl with her friends!
12. Happy Mother's Day! We had lunch at Roma's and then I went to visit my parents for the afternoon.
13. Meatless Monday. I made a huge salad for supper hoping to be able to eat on it for two nights, but my pigs devoured it! No leftovers. 

14. Last day of school. Last day of eighth grade. Last day of middle school.

15. Saw a new OB/GYN today and I absolutely LOVE her! Although I miss my old physician so much (and feel like I'm cheating on her!), I am happy with my new choice. She's great! What I'm NOT happy about is the fact that I have been officially diagnosed with peri-menopause. 

16. Started watching The Crown and I'm loving it! 

17. Took Alise shopping to spend some of her birthday money.

18. Leigh and I went to the Taco and Margarita Festival in town today. 

19. Church and spicy shrimp tacos. I've had my fill of tacos for the weekend! 

20. Made a super yummy recipe for #meatlessmonday called cauliflower parm and it was SO good!

21. Got in over 10,000 steps! Who am I?

22. Had drinks and apps at a new restaurant in town with the girls. Such a fun evening catching up and toasting to summer!
23. Celebrated my secretary's birthday with CAKE!  It was delicious!  For my local peeps, you can't pass up Brookshire's Strawberry Bar Cake. It's one of my favorite desserts to serve to guests. 
24. STILL celebrating Alise's birthday! 
25. Headed to Texas!

26. Stayed the weekend at Wayne's best friend's camp. Let's just say that Greg Iles and I spent a whole lotta time together while Wayne, Alise, and her Bestie fished and rode ATVs! 
27. Happy Memorial Day! Burgers, beans, and lots of pool time!
28. Walked 4 miles, got a pedicure and spent the afternoon reading on my favorite pool float! Bliss! 

29. Went to the doctor and was diagnosed with a double ear infection. I feel horrible.

30. Alise made it through the first week of basketball practice with her new coach. 

31. Kicking off summer with a Family Fun Night. That means dip, pizza, and brownie ala modes and a movie. 

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Tuesday Talk: Pinterest Recipe Surprises

You may remember a few months ago, I shared some Pinterest disappointments. And because I don't like being the bearer of bad news, today I thought I would share some Pinterest surprises when it comes to recipes that I've recently tried. I don't know about you, but I love it when a new recipe is a yummy family pleaser. 
Baked Honey Hot Chicken Sandwiches || I'm not big on chicken sandwiches, but Wayne has a friend that supplies us with boneless chicken breasts and they're just thin enough to be perfect for sandwiches and that's why I decided to try this recipe one Sunday for supper. I served these on Kaiser buns and they were delicious! Totally surprised by the flavor of this new family favorite!

Cajun Caviar || Have you ever tried spreading pepper jelly over another thick layer of complete cheesiness? Let me just say that it isn't easy. This dip did not look all that pretty but our guests literally inhaled it while we waited for our crawfish to boil. Perfect app for a large crowd and the men especially like it! 

Cherry Cheesecake Dip || If you like cherries, then this is the perfect dish to serve as an appetizer or dessert. This recipe is so easy and I served it with graham crackers for dipping and it was a huge hit. 

Philly Cheese Steak Crescent Braid || I'm not sure why this recipe was a surprise because doesn't everything taste better wrapped in crescent rolls? I mean really! If you're a Philly Cheese Steak fan, then I highly recommend this filling meat braid.  I cut a little of the onions and it was still delicious.

Sopapilla Cheesecake || So I've mentioned this recipe before when I made it for our Cinco de Mayo party. And, yes, it calls for crescent rolls, too, so of course it's yummy! My kitchen smelled amazing as our guest arrived. There's just something about cinnamon and sugar.

I hope you're having a great week so far! I'm ready for a long weekend, aren't you? We're headed to Texas later this week and it is "officially" Alise's birthday weekend! We've been so busy - or either it's raining! - that I haven't even gotten the chance to enjoy our pool yet! My pool float is calling my name! Hopefully it will happen soon enough!  Have a GREAT Memorial Day Weekend!