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Showing posts from 2013

Thoughts for the End of the Year....2013

New Year's Eve.....only hours away from 2014.  How the heck did that happen!?!?!?  I know this much for sure - it snuck up on me when I wasn't paying attention. 

At any rate, I don't have any resolutions for the new year.  I don't have a post about my top ten projects or posts - a "year in review" post, if you will.  I don't have a word selected for 2014 - or even a post about the word that I chose for 2013.  I honestly don't have a plan or direction for "Janie's Porch" for the new year.....

However, I am not going to let that deter me from writing. 

Sure, there are days I would love to have one of those beautiful, glossy blogs that never fails to impress multitudes of readers with professional quality photos and original craft or decorating ideas.  You know - the ones that are always perfect and on target with blog trends?

As much as I would like to have a blog like that, it's just probably never going to happen.  I don't have…

Our Holiday Home Tour - Finally!!!

Now that I am "getting back on my feet" - literally - I thought I would share a bit of our Christmas cheer with you.  Although we kept it really simple this year, it has felt warm and cozy while I have been mostly homebound during my recovery this holiday season.  Won't you step on inside and have a look around????
We only have one tree this year....and it is has been pared down considerably.  Nestled to one side of the living room, this is the second year we have used this "pencil" style, pre-lit tree.  The size is just right for our space and I love how quickly it fills up with ornaments!
Rather than drag out our bins and boxes of our cherished ornaments (after all, anything you unpack and use has to be repacked!), I went to Walmart and purchased all new silver, gold and cream colored ornaments.  For about $15, I got plenty of these shatterproof ornaments and glittery snowflakes to dress the tree; then I dug around in storage and brought out our gold icicle …

The Skinny on Recovery...

Christmas is right around the corner and I haven't really done a "holiday" post, shown you our holiday decor, shared any yummy recipes......Should I be feeling a bit guilty????

Well, to be honest, I don't feel guilty.  I won't allow myself to....(even though, as I sit and browse all the beautiful posts on other blogs, I am slightly tempted to feel just a wee bit like I've been slacking.)  
Of course, most of this is due to the fact that I am still recovering from my total hip replacement on December 2nd.  Things went well - except for the reaction to the morphine that left me totally nauseated and unable to keep anything down the first 24 hours.  I ended up only spending two days in the hospital, as the doctor wanted me home before a winter storm hit and things got icy.   Once I was home and settled, the real recovery began.  
The first few days are a bit of a drugged blur, thank goodness.  I remember hurting; I remember needing help just to get out of bed, …

Ready for December....and All It Brings!!!

December 1, 2013.......

We have made it through Thanksgiving and what a delightful day it was!  Bonnie hosted the celebration at their new home this year and it was such a treat not to have to make all the preparations here.  Ben traveled in from San Antonio; Sam and Savanna were there; Bonnie and her brood; and Mom brought Bob from the nursing home.  We were all together, except Matt - who is a manager at a nameless store that decided to open on Thanksgiving....thus causing many of their employees to miss family time that day! 

We feasted and laughed....and enjoyed being together!   Not only were we celebrating Thanksgiving, but it was also Eddie Dale's birthday. 

Tomorrow is the BIG DAY!  After rounds of doctor visits and tests, I am preparing to be at the hospital tomorrow at 10:00 to get my new hip.  Although I had lists a mile long, I know there are bound to be some things that I didn't get done.  But, all will be well!  I will have no restrictions - other than driving f…

Happy Birthday, Bonnie!!!

Sending out birthday wishes for a most special young woman - my daughter, Bonnie!!!
As she puts it, this her "sequel to being 30", that would make her 31.  Sorry, baby girl, if it makes you old....imagine how it makes me feel! 
You are an amazing woman and we all just love ya to bits.  You are like a force of nature, a momma bear and a nurturer.   So proud to be your Mother and Friend!!!

If you haven't read the story of Bonnie's grand and dramatic entrance into the world, you can read it HERE.
And, in case you didn't know, she is just getting started at blogging.  You can check out her blog here - "Blessed Mommy to 3" Hope you will stop by and show her a little comment luv!

Warning - Detour Ahead!!!

December 2.....that is the date around which my world is revolving at the moment.  After struggling with the nearly constant pain of osteoarthritis in my right hip for more than a year, the orthopedic surgeon has set a date for my hip replacement surgery.  December 2. 
November will be a whirlwind of activity as I prepare for recovery time in the month of December.  As of now, my deadline for preparing for Christmas - decorating and shopping - is December 1.   Everything leading up to the holidays has been accelerated!  
I am a little overwhelmed, to say the least.  Although my surgeon is planning on using the anterior approach to the surgery, resulting in a faster and less restricted recovery, I am looking at being out of the loop for most of the month of December.  
With this in mind, I have begun making arrangements and preparing for the down time.  I already have a plan for scaled back Christmas decorating - and will be sharing our new holiday look as I put it into place over the…

Super Simple & Speedy - Pumpkin Muffins

Oh, the wonderful feeling of Fall in the air!  It's been noticeably cooler here - even dipping down below 40 degrees one night.   B-b-b-rrrrrrrrr.....I'm lovin' it! 
The porch is dressed for Halloween, thanks to some beautiful, and inspiring, weather this past weekend...
And I am instinctively "nesting", as I am prone to do this time of year, in preparation for the holidays! 
I have seen - and pinned - this recipe for "2 ingredient" muffins before.  Here is the version I pinned from the Sweet Verbena blog - and she credits Big Red Kitchen for the recipe. 
So, today, I finally got around to making them.  
I couldn't imagine they would be very good, what with only two ingredients......a 15-ounce can of pumpkin and a box of yellow cake mix. The directions said just throw it all in a bowl and mix.
But, what the heck?  They were absolutely awesome!!!  You'd never know how simple and quick they were because THEY TASTE DIVINE!

The batter is pretty s…

One Heck of a Day!!!

Most of yesterday was been spent trying to get us all ready to head out of town for a 4-day weekend.  Here's a quick run-down of the day......

Work at the office from 8:30 til noon.

Stop at HEB on the way home for coffee creamer and Coke Zero - because we are flat out of both.

See Eddie Dale off to work at 2:00 - he has to close tonight and won't be home til nearly midnight, so I am on my own, with my "to do" lists.....

Start cleaning out the trailer - wipe everything down, sweep, vacuum, mop, straighten the cupboards....the whole enchilada!  I admit - we did not clean it up very well after our trip in June.  Well, you can imagine......

Decide to wash the pillow top mattress pad before making the bed in the trailer.

Clean up the washer and laundry room when said pillow top mattress pad falls apart in the washing machine and there is polyfill everywhere.....

Go on a wild goose chase to three different stores before finding the right size foam topper and new mattress p…

What I Wore Wednesday.....

I have so been looking forward to cooler weather so I can break out some different clothes!  Particularly since last week when Mom and I went out to Kohl's and I scored an awesome pair of brown boots (which were on sale and I had a 30% off coupon on top of that)......

Well, the mornings have been chilly enough,but the afternoons quickly warm up.  I've resorted to blending clothes from one season to the next.  You know - lighter weight top so I don't sweat to death, paired with skinny jeans and boots.  This way, all that sweats is my feet, right?

This is what I wore last night to meet with the ladies in the book club for dinner.

Lightweight 3/4 length shirt, blue & green print,over a cool cami - Apt. 9 from Kohl's Stretchy skinny jeans - Jennifer Lopez at Kohl's (key word being "stretchy") Boots - Apt. 9 from Kohl's Earrings and bracelet - James Avery  (oh, wait, you can't even see the earrings - in either of these shots - but, trust me, they&…


Autumn delight is.......
Plump pumpkins sitting on the front porch and steps
A hint of color creeping into the trees
Sleeping with the window up and having to burrow beneath the blanket before dawn
Pumpkin Spice Latte from Starbucks
Bright blooming chrysanthemums in clay pots
Halloween decorations making their annual appearance
Pulling the sweaters, boots and scarves out of the back of the closet
The softer slant of the afternoon sun
Sweet nesting instinct as we feather our "nest" for upcoming Winter
An entire aisle of trick-or-treat candy at the market
Caramel apples
Smell of woodsmoke from the first fire of the season drifting across the neighborhood
Leaves floating down in the breeze
Sunday afternoon naps to the sounds of football on the tv
The first pot of chicken & dumplings
Earlier arrival of dusk
What are some of your favorites things about Fall????

For a peek at images that inspire me during this time of year, visit my Pinterest board -  &qu…

Oh, the Joy of a Simple Day.....

The pace is a bit slower today, thankfully.

We are anticipating a cold front, which should move through during the night.  This means a chance of rain in the morning and much cooler temperatures - in the lower 60's tomorrow for our high and down in the 40's tomorrow night!  Doesn't that sound delightfully "fall-ish"???

While I look forward to the change in weather, I am enjoying getting caught up on some things here at home today.  Yes, I worked some - it's wonderful to have a job where I can work from home, making phone calls and sending out e-mail.  I found time to get in for a haircut this morning and that feels mighty good.  I even took the time to sit on the porch for a bit!  (Of course, I struggled with that familiar sensation of being lazy when I first sat down - but, never fear, I booted that old guilty feeling to the curb as I enjoyed an extra cup of coffee and listened to the birds chirping.)

Making this an even better day, I heard from Son No. 1 (B…

The Written Word - Are You a "Reader"???

I have always been a "reader".
Some of my earliest memories from childhood are going to the public library.  Mom tells me I must have been about five years old the first time she took me down for "story hour".  We carried a bag and when story time was over, we selected books to carry home.  It was dark and raining that day....I remember that.  Even now, when I walk into a library, that somewhat musty smell of books transports me back to those warm and fuzzy memories.....

Through the years, I read voraciously!  I looked forward to my class's weekly trips to the school's library; in the summertime, one of my parents would drive me downtown to the library and allot me a certain amount of time to go in and restock on reading materials.  As an adolescent, Friday and Saturday nights were all about seeing how long I could stay awake to read.....into the wee hours of the morning, as there was no school the next day.

As an adult, I have continued to read, regularly …

Oatmeal & Toffee Cookies....Baked on a Warm Autumn Afternoon

Welcome, friend!  Glad you could stop by today!!!

Is it feeling more like Fall in your neck of the woods yet?  It did for just a few days here, but it's warmed back up in to the low 90's again.  It's a little difficult to get into the swing of October when it is still so dang hot!  But enough belly-achin' about the weather......

This afternoon, I fired up the oven and cranked the A/C down so I could bake some cookies.  Oh, I longed to be able to just open the windows and feel a cool breeze pass through while I baked.....but, sometimes you just have to make do with the hand you're dealt, right?  

Since my work as a Realtor can eat up a lot of my time, I find myself taking little shortcuts in the kitchen when we are craving some homemade goodies.  This is one of my absolute favorite cookies and it seemed like time to whip up a quick batch since I had a couple of hours between appointments today.  (Funny thing is, my last appointment ending up having to cancel since m…

Mercury Glass String Lights....warming it up for Fall!

Saw these awesome faux mercury glass string lights a few days ago over on Shannon's Fox Hollow Cottage blog and my heart went pitty-pat!!!  I ran right out to Big Lots and picked some up for my very own.....

Fanciful little things!  They are battery-operated, so you can put 'em just about anywhere.  I have tucked mine into some Fall garland in the living room......

added a pumpkin scented candle.....

and am totally enjoying the ambiance here on the first day of Fall! 
Welcome, glad you have finally arrived!  This is my favorite time of year.....the sights, the smells, the cool evenings and soft afternoon sunlight.....perfection!!!
How was the first day of Autumn in your neck of the woods???

Welcoming FALL at HOME!!!

Signs of approaching Autumn have arrived here at Janie's Porch!!!
I finally found the motivation and energy to drag out the bins of Fall decor this past weekend.  In keeping with the simpler, pared down look we've been bringing to the interior of our little cottage, I didn't utilize everything I own.  Instead, I opted for some of my favorite items, in softer, muted tones to complement the new palette in the living room.  

And focused on PUMPKINS!!!

Out on the porch, I brought back my standing scarecrow and utilized the potted mums and pumpkins that made their way home with me the last few days.  I picked up an "outdoor" pillow for the rocker at Home Depot - half price at the end of summer clearance - $5.98.  Doesn't it look cozy with its Autumn hued stripes?!?!?

It will be easy to add a few more items when we get into October for Halloween.  "Layering" is one of my favorite ways to jazz it up as we move through the season! 

I'm sure I will be …