I've Got A Problem...

I blog, and then I don't.  Rinse.  Repeat.

Well, I'm determined to be better about blogging this year.  I really do enjoy blogging and I know my readers (my mom) loves it too.  So, first resolution is to be a better blogger.

Happy New Year!  I can't wait to make 2015 my bitch!  

So last night, none of us made it till midnight.  Well Greg did and woke me up and then we tried to wake the kids up to go outside and do sparklers and toast the new year.  They assured us they would get up.  They did not.  We all decided this morning that instead of trying to stay up to midnight to ring in the new year, we will celebrate the next morning.  Works for me! 

After spending the day with family and talking about possible changes that may come our way this year, we lit lanterns with messages for the new year and sent them off into the night with a hope and a prayer.  My mother-in-law actually surprised me with these Chinese Lanterns that you light and send off.  I don't know how she knew that I loved them, but it was great surprise.  I've decided that this will be our new tradition on the first day of each new year.  We loved it!

Wishing you all a wonderful 2015!  This year, I am going to live my life with intent and be brave while doing it!


The Story of Milo

Booger Toogs.

Booger McToogs.

Booger Face.

Fucking Dog (only when he was bad!)


Milo Pilo.


Old Man.

Gray Face.


Twelve long years I had my Old Man.  I loved him for real.  Some may just say "it's just a dog."  Those people are dumb.

I knew he was mine when I picked up his 9 week old self and he grumbled at me.  He picked me.

That first night he fell out of the cart at Pet Smart and G got him drunk on beer (accidentally!).  From then on, him and G were old drinkin' buddies.

That dog taught me a lot.  I nursed him through Parvo, two eye surgeries, and fox-tail removal surgery on his paw.  We had growing pains too:  countless digging in the yard, too many knocked over garbage cans to count, shoes he thought were chew toys, underwear in the yard, and prison breaks out of the yard that left me in a panic.  Pretty sure God thought G & I might need a trial run before kids.  Milo & Otis did the trick.

In the end though...at the sunset of his life he was perfect.  He knew his place and simply existed with us in perfect harmony.  Every day after work he was waiting at the fence with the same puppyish charm that he never lost no matter how gray/white his face became.  He was a symbol of lives combined and committed.

I knew my time was growing short with my Old Man.  G always said Milo's body would give out before his spirit.  G was right.  I wrestled with decision for a couple of days.  Everyone said I would just know when the time was right to send him Home.  I didn't believe anyone.  Milo would seem bad and then bounce back.  Giving me hope time and time again.  One day I came home from work and G and I both knew.  So, we loved on him and loved on him some more.  I felt bad for myself, but I felt even worse for Penelope.  My precious 8 year old had only known life with Milo.  She loved him; he loved her even more.  From the time we first brought her home until the very last days of his life, I would often find Milo curled up bedside to Penelope.  We took him outside and let him rest in his favorite yard, and as always, G cracked them a beer to share.  Milo mustered a lick or two and went inside.  We knew.

We took him to the vet and they did what they do and G and I said goodbye to a part of us that existed from almost the beginning of Us.  Before marriage, before kids, before bills, before 9-5 life, before all of that, there was Milo.  Twelve long years of the beginning of our history.  As my boy went to sleep in my harms, in between the tears, I did feel joy.  Milo was ours, trusted to us to love and learn from.   And in his final days, I was able to ease his suffering even though it meant I had to endure my own.
I still find myself waiting to see his big face at the gate to greet me.  That part pulls at my heart strings.  However, today Geoffrey was waiting there, and instead of feeling sadness, I felt happy.  Milo was mine and for that, there is no sorrow.

Until we meet again Sweet Boy...

Booger Toogs.

He loved apples.  I loved to kiss that squishy face.

My Old Man.



The Weekly Wrap

I love Sundays.

Most people kinda dread them because it means going back to work.  It means having to do Mondays.  It means the weekend is over.

I love them.  Sundays are my day to grocery shop, do laundry and cook all day long.  There is nothing I love more than hearing the constant hum of the washer and dryer, the smell of lingering bacon from breakfast well into lunch time, the smell of clean laundry, and sweet chaos of the kids laughing and playing and even the occasional scolding from Daddy.

Sundays are the sound of family.

Sundays are also the day I like to reflect on the week that just happened and the week that is about to come.  Time moves at lightening speed these days and I like to remember all the moments in between.

Love that my front yard has been taken over by clover.  It smells like fresh herbs when we mow.

Monsoons in July.  Love them.  They give us a gentle reprieve from the Arizona summers.

So glad to have her home.  10 days with the grandparents. Longest we've been apart in 8 years.

Late night grub.  Love Fili B's when you want to be really bad!

So glad he's home too.  He was with Sissy and the grandparents.  10 long days without that face!

It means "I Love You."  At least that's what the dinosaurs say.

Oh yeah.  That shizz is real, yo.  Weeds taller than me in my garden area. Lots of work.

Gorgeous Arizona sunsets.  Hotter than hell, but still pretty.

Mind blown.  That's it.  Had to have them.

On my way to date night with the Hubby.

Looking Forward To:

  • School supply shopping with Penelope.  I think I'm more excited.
  • Greg to be done with his mid-terms.
  • Pay day.
  • Cousin sleepover at our house.
  • Co-worker coming back from vacation and seeing his trashed pranked office.
Have a great week!



Twice Baked Potato Skins

We'd been talking about potato skins.  I started craving them.  But, between you and I, I've always been a bit perplexed about the discarded carved out potato.  It just seemed wasteful.  So then I started thinking about twice-baked potatoes.  And then "ding" it came to me...TWICE-BAKED POTATO SKINS!!!  Holla!  I'm sure I'm not the only to think of this, but thought you might enjoy my recipe regardless.  

Twice-Baked Potato Skins
  • Potatoes - Use whatever you have.  I had a bag of Yukon Golds
  • Oil - Enough to rub the outside of the potatoes
  • 1/4 cup (give or take) sour cream
  • 1/8 - 1/4 cup of milk
  • Butter - the more the better.  Seriously.
  • Grated Cheese - enough to sprinkle on the assembled potato skins.  I used a mix of cheddar & jack.
  • Parmesan Cheese - as much or as little as you want.  I used the grated stuff.
  • Salt & Pepper - to your taste.
  • Garlic - 1 clove crushed and grated.
  • Green Onions or chives.  Whatever you have on hand.
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Rub outside of the potatoes with oil and bake until the skins are crispy and they are tender.
  3. Let potatoes cool and cut in half.  Scoop out the insides and save.  Leave enough of a "potato border" so the skin is sturdy.
  4. In a bowl, mix together the potato insides, sour cream, milk, butter, p-cheese, salt, pepper and garlic.
  5. Scoop the mashed mix into the potato skins, top with grated cheese and bake until bubbly golden, melty and delicious.
  6. Sprinkle with green onions or chives.  Oh, I also added a little dollop of sour cream when served.

Variations, Add-Ins, Spin-offs...
  • Bacon of course.  Duh.
  • Sauteed mushrooms & Swiss cheese.
  • Sauteed green chiles and queso fresco or cotija for that extra kick.
  • Caramelized onions.
  • Anything really.


Aloha Hawaii - Part 1

Where to even begin?

We were lucky enough to be able to ring in 2013 in Maui, Hawaii and let me tell you, it was the most beautiful place I have ever been.

A picture is worth a thousand words...so I'll let them speak for themselves.


First Day - Beach Babies
I love how happy they are here.
I hope they are always this close.
They always do this.  Always.  I have so many pictures of the four of them holding hands.
Roadside Smoothies!
Roadside Farmer's Market
Sugar Cane!
On a Pineapple Farm Tour - Getting Washed
Baby Pineapple



DIY: Trash to Treasure

It's no secret.  I love thrift shopping.  I love finding discarded treasures.  You'd be amazed at some of the amazing pieces I have found over the years, especially my amazing vintage Pyrex collection.  That deserves and will get its own post later.

Anyway, I found this little gem and I couldn't pass it up.  It usually happens this way...I see something in it's current state and then immediately see something else entirely once it's mine.

Look around...you'd be surprised at what you can find!



Everyday Inspiration: Old Fashioned Produce Bags

I'm pretty sure I'm the only that has a freak-out session in the grocery store when beauts like these are spotted.

Oh my gah!

Found at my local Whole Foods

I was immediately drawn to them and had I not been on my lunch break, I might have just filled each bag with their respective treats!  Hmm, maybe it's all a marketing ploy.  Oh well, I still fell in love with the colors, fonts and graphics on each bag.  I also LOVE the ideal of these old produce bags coming back.  I love the handles, I love, I love, I love.  I have issues.

Regardless, it's fun to find inspiration in uncommon places.  Sometimes it is the creative juju you need to get things jump started.  Look around!  You might just be pleasantly surprised in the simplest things.