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Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Vacation

As many of yu know and can see, Jason and I went on vacation a week ago.  I love Mexico and we usually go to Cancun but decided we would opt for the more peaceful part of Mexico and go to Playa Del Carmen.  It was a great decision.  We stayed at a wonderful hotel called the Sandos Playacar beach resort and spa.  We had a room right on the beach that we could open our back door and be on a patio listening and watching the waves.  (Def. worth the extra money if you have never been and it is just you and the hubby/wifey)  The first day there, we opted to just relax and have a nice dinner at the resort. (We ALWAYS go all-inclusive, all drinks and food are paid for.)  We also had two other couples go with us and it was awesome being able to experience all of this with someone else.  The next day Jason and I opted to just go by ourselves to Cozumel and rent a jeep.  I was a bit scared to do this as I had never rented a vehicle in another country before.  But, I wanted to Geocache and explore on my own time and not some tour guides.  It ended up being the best decision ever.  We rode the ferry over and had our rental car by 8:00 in the morning and headed for the Mayan Ruins.  NO ONE was ther when we arrived so we had the whole place to ourselves.  I even planked the ruins!  (picture up soon)  Ater that we headed to a geocache and found a couple on th East side of the island that led us to sme really awesome places.  We finally made it around to the other side and decided we would grab a bite to eat.  Carlos and Charlies it is!  I will say the food and drinks are a bit pricey here becasue it is an island and you are in a touristy part, bu it was yummy.  After that we headed to Chakanaab (sp?)  Where we snorkled and I got a massage on the beach and relaxed.  Jason saw a spotted sting ray and a baracuda and many other neat fish.  The next day all of us went to Rio Secreto (The Secret River)  It was pretty neat as we went in a cave and had to tread water in it. One area they turned off all the lights and we where in complete darkness.  Had a nice lunch there and then back to the hotel for dinner and entertainment. Carlos specials are dangerous, that is all I am saying.  We have some funny stories from this night, but I really do not want proof of it all written down for all to read.  Of course, I am a thrill seaker and I had to try Repelling on more time and wanted to Zip Line so the next day Jason and I did another tour. Mayan Jungle Tour.  Someone was not feeling to swift this morning so the ride there was iffy. (no, it was not me)  When we got there we suited up and immediatly started on the zip lines.  I was ok at first but when we got to the top I started to shake.  Eventually I made it up and went.  It was awesome and I would so do it again. We did 3 total and the last one we landed in the water.  After that we swam in a cave and snorkled in it.  This was awseome and better than the secret river for the same price, just saying.  After that, we procded for a 4X4 jeep ride which was like nothing you have ever done before.  Mexican brakes are literally tyhe guy rund the vehicle into a tree going about 40 MPH.  We then walked in the jungle for a bit to a Cenote where we Repelled down and swam in the cenote for a bit.  Then off for lunch and back to the hotel.  (Most awesome your I have ever done, I recommend it to everyone)  The next day was a day to relax and shop, so off to town we go.  Laurie and I got a one hour massage for 25 bucks and and it was THE BEST massage I have ever gotten. (I have hd a LOT of massages in my life.)  We bought a few souveneirs and then had a nice evening of dinner with friends and staying up late with the hubby on the beach with a bottle of champagne and chocolate covered strawberries.  I was ready to see my kiddos but I could so see myself living somewhere like this.  Next time we are taking the kids.  I have so many stories to tell from this week but that could be a novel.  I will say this is one of the best trips we have ever done.  So I have to give a shout out to my friends Alysin and wendy for watching the kids for us while we where gone.  The best part was coming home to a clean house and roses for Mothers Day! 
Now, before we left, I spent a whole day making meals for the kids and their babysitters.  When I came home some of it was still left and I loved not having to cook it every day, just throw it in the oven and voiala, dinner is done and it is yummy.  And in some cases taste better because it has all melded together for a while.  So, tomorrow, I am going to d this again, I will post all of thedishes I make, how I am freazing them and how I will heat them back up.   If you have a family that is active like mine, this is sooooo worth it.  Be on the look out for it tomorrow. 

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Old Sarah has a farm E-I-E-I-O

We have 7 horses, 2 mini horses, a mule, 2 ducks, 1 chicken, 3 goats, a turtle, fish, hamster, 2 dogs, 3 cats and now a pig.  The pig will be the death of me, either that or he will be the reason I sty slim and fit.  Long story short, we told the girls if we got rid of Dirk they could have a pig.  I figured they would forget about it and I would not really have to get a pig.  The neighbor raises pigs but we do not know them very well and rarely talk to them. (When I say neighbor, he lives around the block from us but his fence backs up to our fence at the end of our property line.)  This man also used to be the old ag teacher at the high school here so I told Janel if we ever got a pig she would need to talk with him to learn how to take care of the pig.  Well he happened to be outside messing with the pigs and loading them up Tuesday and he asked the girls if they wanted a pig, he would throw it over the fence.  Well, of course they come running to the house screaming like little girls (yes, they are little girls) telling me that the neighbor is going to give them a pig.  I was like, ask him how much.  He said FREE.  How can I refuse free? So, he says he will be over in ten minutes to drop the pig off.  We got an area in one of the horse stalls all ready for him and he dropped the pig of  promised.  The next morning the pig was still there so I thought, good, we have the fence set up great.  (This is now my Birthday!) I make sure the pig has plenty of water and food and head to Oxley Nature Center to lead my tour of students for the day.  I pick the girls up for school, take them to golf lessons and head home.  I have lost my keys to the house, so we are locked out.  While we are waiting on Jason to get home we go check on the pig....She is missing.  I send the girls to the field to look fr the pig while I search around the house.  The pig is running the fence by where it's mother is.  So, it is time to catch a pig.  Should not be too hard.  It's not a huge pig, but it's not a little baby either.  I am not sure if the pig can bite so I don't want to tackle it and I saw the guy carry the pig by it's back leg to our pen.  PIGS ARE FAST.  And so I am!  I eventually get it cornered and grab it's back leg. (I am sure the neighbor was somewhere laughing at me and making bets with his buddies on weather I would catch the pig or not)  Catching the pig is one thing, getting it back to it's stall is another.  Imagine holding a grown child by one leg and trying to carry it 300 feet while it is worming around in your hands.  Not easy at all.  But I succeeded. Pig 0 Me 1  Reinforcements on fence made and we are back in business.  I came home today and the pig is gone, again.  I am not about to mess with the pig till the kids get home, so when they do, I send them to look for the pig.  Once again she is by her old momma.  So, here I am in a jean skirt and the guy is outside just smiling.  I start chasing the pig...Little buger is fast.....Running up and down the fence line, trying to creep up on thepig and grab it slowly, run and tackle pig.  Where is a video camera?  I probably missed out on some money not letting anyone record this.  But, once again, I win, pig 0 me 2.  But really, am I the winner in this situation?   Maybe when I am eating some yummy bacon and pork ribs I will feel like a winner, right now I just feel like I got a huge work out and I really had not planned on working out today.   Hmmmm  new challenge for Biggest Loser-Wrangle as many pigs as you can into a pen in 1 hour.....Now that, I would watch.  Hope you are laughing just reading this and picturing me in a skirt chasing a pig and carrying it by one leg across my field in flip flops.  Funny stuff right there.

I will leave you with a recipe:  BACON EXPLOSION

2 pounds bacon, thick sliced

  • 2 pounds sausage (italian, breakfast, sage. Whichever you prefer)
  • 1 cup cheddar cheese (finely shredded)
  • 2 whole green onions (thinly sliced)
  • 4 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1 jar barbecue rub (your favorite brand)
  • 1 bottle barbecue sauce (your favorite brand)

  • Preparation method

    Prep: 20 mins |Cook: 2 hours
    1.Bacon Explosion step photo 1Take 1 to 1 1/2 pounds of the bacon and do a basketweave/lattice of bacon like the picture shown. Sprinkle the weave with some of the barbecue rub. Cook the remaining bacon until crispy. Remove the bacon from the pan and reserve the cooked bacon for the filling.
    2.Bacon Explosion step photo 2On a cutting board, roll out the sausage to the same size as the weave. I use a gallon ziploc bag and leave the top open a bit so the air can escape. It makes a perfect square that will fit on your bacon weave. Cut the plastic bag away from the sausage and discard the bag. Place the sausage square on top of the weave.
    3.Bacon Explosion step photo 3Sprinkle the crumbled cooked bacon, the cheddar cheese, garlic and the green onions over the sausage. Pour some of the barbecue sauce on top of the filling and sprinkle with more of the rub.
    4.Bacon Explosion step photo 4Roll up the sausage in the bacon weave into a tight roll.
    5.Bacon Explosion step photo 5Place the roll in the smoker for approx. 2 hours (give or take, depends on your heat source) or until the internal temperature reads 165 degrees F. During the last 20 - 30 minutes, baste the roll with the remaining barbecue sauce.
    6.Bacon Explosion step photo 6When the roll comes out of the smoker, let it rest for 30 minutes before slicing. Serve on freshly baked biscuits.
    Tip For crispier bacon on the roll, when you remove it from the smoker, place the roll in the broiler for approx. 5 minutes to crisp up the outside then baste with the barbecue sauce.

    Monday, April 23, 2012

    Geocaching, what is it?

    Everyone is always asking me what Geocaching is and how did I get started.  Well, I had heard about it once on the news and then my preacher would always talk about taking his kids to do it and I thought it sounded cool.  I waited a year and would hear about it and every time I was like, I soooo want to do that.  I just was not sure how to get started.  So, a year and a half ago when I was home schooling the girls, I looked it up. (www.geocaching.com) and saw there was one at the Wal-Mart.  I looked and did not find it and was a little bummed. So I went to one down the road from there and we found it.  I was hooked.  It is basically a world wide scavenger hunt where people will hide some sort of container. (something as small as a test tube, pill bottle to as big as an ammo can.)  The biggest one I have ever found was a 5 gallon bucket.  A lot of times there will be items in the container such as kids toys, knick knacks.  If you want something then the idea is to take it and replace whatever you took with something of equal or greater value.  A lot of people do not do this so a lot of times you will find the container empty.  I try and bring items to refill them if I see this has happened.  The person that hides it puts in coordinates to where the item is hidden and then you use a GPS (your phone, or one bought from the store) to locate the item.  They can be really easy to find or really hard.  Everything is rated for difficulty to find and terrain (how hard it is to get to the item)  Once you find it, there is always a log inside, sign your geocaching name and then place the item back exactley like you found it.  Do not take it or the next person will not be able to find it.  Then you log on the site that you found it and you can write a story about your experience or not.  There is caching lingo:  TFTC=thanks for the cache TNLN = took nothing left nothing  SL=signed log  and many others.  There are also events that you can attend, which is what I like to do.  I recently did a cometition and this is where they hide a bunch of caches for one day and you find as many as you can with a group of people.  Another event I just got back from is Spring Fling and it is basically the same this but people get really creative with their hides because it is just temporary so they don't have to worry about it being ruined by the elements or by someone finding it and ruining it.  This is where you really see some creative things come out.  Also, at times you will find coins or even dog tags or other items that have a code on it.  These are NOT to keep.  They are travel bugs and the idea is to take it and then type the code in geocaching and you can see any missions this item has and where it has been (some have been all over the world). You log you found it and then put it in another cache.  This is a hobby that will take you places you have never been or never knew existed and it is great fun for the whole family or just by yourself. Most always they are hidden in parks, cemetaries and hiking trails. There are even some at gas stations and public places like that. If you ever want to try it, call me, I am always up for caching if I am free.  I have almost found 1000 caches!  I am really not sure what else to say about it so if you have questions, feel free to ask. 

    Leaving you with a recipe:

    Fried pickles in the oven (These where awesome)

    1 jar pickle slices (I have also used the 1/4 slices but like the smaller ones better)
    2 eggs
    1/3 cup flour
    1 TBSP. worcestershire sauce
    1 tsp. hot sauce
    1 tsp garlic powder
    1 tsp cajun seasoning
    1 tsp. pepper
    1 1/2 cups panko bread crumbs (any kind of bread crumb works)
    ranch dressing or hot sauce for dippping


    Turn oven broiler on high.  In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs and flour. add worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, garlic, cajun seasoning, and pepper, mix well.  Place bread crumbs in a dish and sunk each pickle in the egg mixture and then dredge in the bread crumbs.  Place coated pickles on a pan sprayed with pam. Broil for about 3 minutes on each side. 

    Thursday, April 19, 2012

    Murder

    With the recent shooting of a couple individuals from our community, it got me thinking about the families of the ones that commited this crime.  I am in a similar situation.  My brother who grew up with a life only most of us see on television was in a gang and spent 4 years in Corcoran prison.  He was let out last year but had no therepy or any type of learning while in prison.  He immediatley went back to the gang.  After only about 3 months out, he walked up to an individual and shot that person in cold blood.  Someone related to me (A brother of all things) was actually capable of doing something like that.  I was like a mother to him when he was small. I changed his diaper and took him on walks and he was such a loving little boy.  Now he is being tried for murder with a possible death row sentence.  The families of things like this can really suffer.  Harrasment from the victims, even though we had nothing to do with their crimes. Guilt over what we could have done to maybe prevent it. (Although, I know there was nothing I could do to change what happened, I still feel a little guilt) Shame in knowing someone we are related to could do soemthing like this. And a little sadness for the person who did it.  What went wrong?  Are they remorsefull?  And then also, sadness for the victim who lost their life.  I wonder what that persons life was like before they where shot?  What was their family like, did they have children of their own?  You wonder how God can be a comfort in something as tragic as this.  Is this person capanle of being saved.  We often think that this is a worse sin than anything we  could ever commit.  But then, isn't all sin created equal.  Once again, who am I to judge.  Doesn't God say in 1 John 3:14-15 "We know that we have passed from death to life, becasue we love our brothers. Anyone who does not love remains in death. Anyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life." Hmmm, so if I hate a fellow christian, I am just as guilty of murder?  Well, no, not necessarily. But, the spirit which could lead to murder is there and god will hold us responsible for it.  God judges us in our hearts. I think about thoughts I might have had in the past about people and the secret sins of my own heart.  The thought of what i might possibly have been able to do if not for the restraining grace of God.  I am so glad I have God to subdue those feelings and implant feelings of love instead.  I love my brother and I do think his sin is forgiveable.  I am still struggling on weather I will contact him or not.  But, I think every person should know they are loved, weather they want to accept that love or not.  God forgave and loved murderers.  Moses was one of those people.  Romans 12:17-21 says "Repay no one evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all.  If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, "vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the lord." To the contrary, "if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by doing so you will heap burning coals on his head." Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good." Gives new meaning to the phrase "kill them with kindness" 

    Wow, that was a ramble.  I will leave you with an awesome recipe I found for roast and have almost changed to this one all the time because it is sooooo easy.

    3 packet roast

    1 beef roast, any kind to fit your crock pot
    1 package hidden valley ranch dressing mix
    1 package brown gravy mix
    1 package italian gravy mix
    1/2 cup warm water

    Combine the three packets and rub it all ove rthe roast. Place in crock pot with 1/2 cup water poured over it and cook on low 7 hours.  When done, use juices to make gravy by combining 2 TBSP corn starch and 1/4 cup water to a boil. Mashed potatoes are a must with this.
    Let me know if you make it and how much you enjoyed it.

    Wednesday, April 18, 2012

    My almost post

    I had a blog written up that took me a good 20 minutes to write. I almost posted it and then I came across this verse:  "But no man can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison." James 3:8  So many people are qick to give their opinion or tell others how they are sinners or how they don't like the way so and so is acting.  We need to make sure we are evaluating ourselves before doing these things.  I am often guilty of speaking before thinking and it is something God has worked with me on since I was a little girl.  I think some things do need to be said so that we are not just trying to make everyone happy.  I do think most of my friends are appreciative of the advice I give and I my hope is that it is always done in a Godly way and not a judgemental one.  I have a lot of sin in my life and I am no one to act better than any one else.  There are those who may think I do, but those people have not gotten a chance to know me.  I can be standoffish at times.  But I genuinly care about every one.  Keeping in God's word has proven to help me stay out of a lot of confrontations and be a better person.
    With our mouths, we can cause someone to do something they can never take back.  I know their are things people said to me in high school and even when I was younger than that and those things have stuck with me even all these years later.  I don't want something I say and don't remember today to be something someone else holds in their heart for the rest of their life.  We should take every opportunity to tell anyone we pass by that they can do it, they are able to fulfill their destny, they have what it takes.  I will work on using my words wisely becasu I know they hod the power of life and death. 

    I really would like to blog more so please let me know you read this and if I know it helps, I will post more. 

    Thursday, August 25, 2011

    Have you met my teenage daughter? Me either, but she sure acts like one.

    So, the first day of school has come and gone over two weeks ago.  janel has tried to wear this one particular dress like 3 times and I have told her no every time she put it on.  The straps are not wide enough for school.  So, Monday she walks into the kitchen wearing a really cute shirt, but it has a skull on it.  I told her that it was probably not ok to wear skulls to school so she better pack another shirt just in case.  on closer inspection I saw she had another shirt under the one she was wearing.  I asked her what is was and she said it was just an undershirt.  Me: Come closer and let me see.  Janel: (lifts up her shirt) Me:  (I see sh has her shorts unbuttoned and she is wearing the dress under her clothes and has it stuffed into her shorts. ) Janel, go change clothes right now and then throw the dress away. Janel: So not fair mom.  When she got home from school i asked her what her plans where and she told me they where to go to the bathroom and emove her top clothes so she could wear the dress.  Since then we argue every morning about the things she can wear, how to fix her hair, ect. ect.  I am really trying to pick my battles here but she is doing things most kids do not do till they are teenagers.  UGH  Someone commit me now.  I want my daughters to understand modesty and respect for dress codes.  So if you see my daughter at school in something innapropriate, she is probaby trying to pull a fast one on me.  CALL ME immediately. I worry all the time about my kids and the society they asre growing up in.  It is so easy to be lured into drugs and sex at such a young age.  8th graders are doing it and it is not just one or two.  This just freaks me out to think that she will be in junior high school in 3 years.  My daughters have met their match though.  I will be all up in their business as much as I can be.  LOL  Poor kids. 
    On another note, I have had no sleep the past 3 nights because of a cricket in my bedrom wall.  It chirps ALL NIGHT long.  How long can a cricket live without food or water.  I am about to tear some walls apart.  Plus the dog is on his 4th opposum of the month.  The garbage men probably hate picking up my garbage.  YUCK!!! 
    Yeah, these are just ramblings, but I am sure someone else is going thru this with their daughters.  We need to be tough on them now before they are too old for us to tell what to do. 

    Thursday, August 18, 2011

    Sky Diving

    So, many of you know how afraid I am of heights.  Many of you had bets on weather I would sky dive or not.  Well, as you can see, I did it!!!!  I myself had my doubts.  I was not nervous till we lft the house to head to the airport.  I was sick to my stomach.  I tried to puke but just could not make myself.  I think I went pee 5 times.  There was something wrong with the plane and they had to get it fixed before we could leave so it was gonna be at least an hour wait.  WHAT THE???  I am not getting on that pane.  But, I did.  We get back and get our geer on and head up in the plane.  I was shaking so bad and evey little jerk I would grab my tandem guy and he probably thought I was getting fresh with him or something.  He tells me to turn around so we can get strapped in and then it is time to open the door.  I begin yelling "NO, NO, NO".  Acordding to him, that sounds like go, go, go.  He tells me to stick my leg out of the plane onto the step and I was freaking out.  Finally I decide to just close my eyes and he places my foot outdie the plane at 10,000 feet in the air.  I coss my arms over my chest and before I knew what was going on, we where doing flips out the door.  We free fell till about 6,000 feet and my heart was racing waiting for the chute to come open.  Finally it did.  I had a death grip on the straps the whole time. Finally, we made it to the grouns.  I kissed the ground and then was excited that I actually did it.  I will admit to paying the Lords Prayer before getting out of the plane and also singing Our God is an Awesome God the whole time.  But, I really can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.  And if I can sky dive, anyone can,  for real.  It was the most awesome thing I have ever done. 

    Here is a recipe I will leave you with that I tried the other day and it was awesome!!!!

    Captain crunch chicken

    Ingredients:


    • 2 cup captain crunch cereal
    • 1 1/2 cup corn flakes, crushed
    • 1 egg
    • 1 cup milk
    • 1 cup all purpose flour
    • 1 tsp onion powder
    • 1 tsp garlic powder
    • 1/2 tsp black pepper
    • 2 lb chicken breast- boneless skinless cut not strips
    • Vegetable oil for frying

    Directions:


    Beat egg with milk and set aside

    Stir together flour, onion, garlic powders and pepper, set aside.

    Dip chicken into flour, dip into egg, then dip into cereal mixture.

    Heat oil to 325°

    Fry 3-5 minutes and serve.