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Showing posts from January, 2012

Chicken Taco Chili - Crockpot Dinner

If you've been online lately, then you've probably noticed that "crockpot cooking" is all the rage!!!

And no wonder!  I'm amazed at what you can do with a crockpot!  

For instance, I've made "Chicken Taco Chili" a couple of times now.  It is quickly becoming one of our favorite meals - healthy, nutritious, and oh-so-simple to dump in the crockpot and come home to a hot & ready meal.

Here's all you need......

1 onion, chopped  1 16-oz. can black beans (do not drain) 1 16-oz. can kidney beans (do not drain) 10 oz. package of frozen corn kernels (we love the super sweet variety!) 2 14.5-oz. cans diced tomatoes w/chilies 1 8-oz. can tomato sauce 1 packet taco seasoning (use the reduced salt variety for healthier results) 1 Tbsp. cumin 1 Tbsp. chili powder 24 oz. (3-4) boneless skinless chicken breasts (stock up when these are on sale!!!)  chili peppers, chopped (optional)  1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro (optional)
Combine beans, onion, chili peppers, corn,…

Application of The Word

Faith.  Trust.    Big words that point to God and His power.   Words I want desperately to live by....
Worry. Fear.   There are days when it just seems so hard to let go of these two words.... Words that point right back at me and my weakness.  
Having begun my own business just over a year ago, the income still isn't steady.  It fluctuates much with the seasons and the housing market.  For the year prior to that, the first year after our relocation, I had zero income coming in.  So, we are still struggling to pull up out of that hole.

At moments, concern over where the money will come from overwhelms me.  Every time I sit down to update the checkbook and pay bills, I break into a clammy sweat.  Each time I spend money on something that isn't a necessity, trepidation and guilt worm their way into my mind.

There are times when I feel compulsively drawn to The Word for reassurance.... and It never fails me.

"Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication wi…

Getting It Done - One Shelf at a Time!

Remember how I said I sometimes have ambivalent feelings about greeting the morning?

Well, part of the reason I was dragging my feet that particular morning, blogging instead of getting busy, was this......


One of the corner cupboards in my kitchen was in pretty sad shape.  I knew, without doubt, that I needed to address it right away (after successfully putting it off all through the holiday baking season).  I was simply dreading it.

Once I got in there, though, it actually wasn't so bad.  I tossed quite a bit right into the trash can.  There was some baking stuff in there that had probably made the move from the Panhandle a couple of years ago.  Yuck!  Out it went!

I had to just work with what I had to organize things, though.  After getting it to this point, I was able to evaluate what I would need and create a shopping list for bins/containers.  So, it can continue to improve from this point, but it already looks a lot better.....
I have been browsing around in Pinterest, and g…

The Daily Routine....

Do you ever have ambivalent feelings about getting up and around in the mornings???

I sure do!  I admit, quickly and frequently, that I am not a "morning person".  I love snuggling down under the covers and sleeping in.  I generally need a good half-hour to get rolling and even think about heading for the shower.  My routine requires a quick sip of iced Coke Zero to wet my whistle, followed by a generous cup of hot coffee laced with flavored creamer.  Taking the dogs out to do their business and dawdling on the patio for a few minutes with my caffeine in hand....checking e-mail and Facebook to see if I've missed anything important while sleeping....wandering about the house in a stupor for a bit.....all part of my daily routine. 

Most days, I have some sort of idea what the agenda will be.  I almost always work in my DayPlanner right before going to bed so I will be sure to have a general outline in place for the next day.  And I always feel the need to incorporate a lot…

Making Some Changes...

Well, as you can see, I have playing with redesigning things here at Janie's Porch a bit.  What do ya think???

What I really wanted to do this afternoon was rearrange furniture.  I don't know....maybe I have a touch of Spring Fever.  But, I had the strong urge to make some changes.  Given all the furniture I have in a small house, shifting things around is pretty tricky.  And, since Eddie is at work, I don't have anyone to help me!

So, I settled for making some changes here on the ol' blog.  I think I will live with it for a few days to see if I need to do any more tweaking.....

Now, off to make a run to the grocery store so the pups can eat supper!

Give me some feedback, y'all!!!!



Settling on One Little Word.....

Howdy, y'all!!!  Hear that good ol' West Texas twang in my voice?!?!?  If you can't, then you must be deaf!  (No offense to those who are deaf....maybe that was not very PC of me.....)

Having a lovely day here!  The weather is phenomenal - especially considering that it is mid-January.  The high soared above 80 today, with lots of beautiful sunshine.  I was outside in a 3/4-sleeve cardigan this morning at 10:00 and it felt terrific!

As the beautiful weather lifts my spirit, it also makes me antsy - eager to get out and get going on a project in the yard, or something like that.  I feel like I really need to be "working" on something other than "work".  (If that even makes any sense....)

So, I've done what I needed to get done for the job.....

And, now I'm allowing my mind to just contemplate.....this and that.....but, mostly I'm thinking on what I would like to accomplish this year.  Yep, still working on those "Goals for 2012".  I…

You Are Invited....to a Family Affair!!!

I promised pictures....and I deliver!!!  Here are some photos from Bonnie's wedding.......




Bonnie planned and we put this wedding together in only a few short weeks.  She had a vision of what she wanted - family-oriented, simple affair with black, white and silver.  She and I did the flowers. Each of her attendants selected their own dresses.  Ansleigh and Trayden looked adorable.  Matt's niece was the Flower Girl and his nephews were ringbearers.  Bonnie's friend, Stacy, did all the photos.  Matt's sister, Ashley, made both cakes.  It was truly a Family Affair!

I want to send out a SPECIAL THANKS to our Friends who went the extra mile and helped with setting up and cleaning up - Kim, Jacqueline, Barbara and John and Bethany!  Ben and Sam, my sweet boys, helped their Sister on her special day with loving hearts - kudos to you, guys!  And, Rudy, you did an awesome ceremony and kept Matt calm. 

Matt and Bonnie, my heart is filled with love and best wishes for you as you …

It Is Finished - and Best Wishes!!!

Well, the wedding is over!!!  Bonnie and Matt said their "I Do's" on Saturday evening and it couldn't have been more beautiful or more special. 

I am waiting for copies of photos from the photographer.  I didn't even take our camera because we were so flustered by the time we got out the door.  But, in the back of my mind, I knew that the photographer was going to be snapping away - actually following Bonnie around all during the day as she prepared for the ceremony.  So, there will be lots and lots of photos to share before it's all said and done. 

Eddie and I prepared all the food for the reception following the ceremony at the church.  He smoked briskets and we made baked beans and potato salad to serve with those.  Let me tell you, the work is in the details!!!  So many things to remember.....salt and pepper shakers, flatware, napkins, serving tongs, even toothpicks!  I had list after list to help me remember everything.

Bonnie and I worked on her bridesm…

Finally - a New Roof!!!

We have been so fortunate to have some beautiful, warmer days here in the last week!!!  It almost makes one forget that this is January....

The warmer weather allowed the roofers to get over here and put our new roof on this week.  Yea!!!  We had an awful hail storm on Easter Sunday, damaging many roofs in town.  Waiting lists grew very long, particularly for the most-favored contractors.  And we waited many months for our contractor to get to our house! 

Let me tell you - it was quite an experience for the three dogs residing in our home.  The crew swarmed over the roof, beginning about 8:30, peeling off the old roof.  The noise level was incredible and the dogs were quite alarmed.  For 8 hours it continued....the noise and the barking!!!  The biggest challenge was getting the pups outside to go potty.  I finally resorted to putting them on a leash, one at a time, dragging them outside to do their business.  Imagine their terror at seeing men up on the roof and air compressor hoses d…

Organizing Thoughts for a New Year....

2012... a new year!  The year is fresh, new, like a blank sheet of beautiful paper, just awaiting my thoughts and dreams to be penned in ink....

What will I make of it????

It's a lot to ponder.  And I have yet to devote enough time to organize my thoughts about my goals for the year, much less come up with a "word" for the year.....


(I wonder to myself.....does this make me a slacker in the blogosphere?  Truth be told, I know it probably just makes me "normal".....and I do have a couple of words in mind at this point.)

But, I am working on it.  Today, I have three items spread out on the desk before me - my DayPlanner, a spiral to record my goals (personal and business for the year), and a grocery list.  For the last little bit, I have been bouncing back and forth, writing down things as I think of them.  (Grocery list is winning at the moment!)  My brain is a jumble of thoughts and ideas, but I'm working on sorting them out and compartmentalizing them.  Wri…