Monday, August 31, 2009

Vintage Table

Driving home Friday afternoon, I spotted this vintage blue painted table. I have been looking for a side table for my daughters room and I knew this would be perfect. Lots of space for her to place her trinkets. She has a small room, so I need to be practical about what I buy her. I think it turned out really cute.
I love blue glass, and this vintage Ball Mason Jar is my favorite color of blue, ever. Soothing and beautiful..........

Years ago, my grandmother gave me antique tea cups & saucers from her collection. She doesn't remember me anymore, but this reminds me of her and how things used to be.
And I smile... Thanks for stopping by !

Stop by Southern Hospitality for more great yard sale finds and stop by
Smiling Sally for more Blue Monday !

Friday, August 28, 2009

Penne with Tomatoes, Olives and Two Cheeses

This is such a huge hit in my family, that it was the first meal I made for my husband when he returned home from Iraq after being deployed for an entire year. Since the kids went back to school this week, I needed to make something really special.

So, when my daughter was busy getting "married", I had plenty of time to whip this up.

Penne with Tomatoes, Olives and Two Cheeses
{Bon Appétit February 1995} Yes, I've been making this for 14 years !

6 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
1 teaspoon minced garlic
3 (28-ounce) cans Italian plum tomatoes, drained
2 teaspoons dried basil
1 1/2 teaspoons dried crushed red pepper
2 cups canned low-salt chicken broth
1 pound penne or rigatoni
2 1/2 cups packed grated Havarti cheese
1/3 cup sliced pitted brine-cured olives (such as Kalamata)
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh basil

Heat 3 tablespoons oil in heavy large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic; sauté until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Mix in tomatoes, dried basil and crushed red pepper. Bring to boil, breaking up tomatoes with back of spoon. Add broth; bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium; simmer and mixture thickens to chunky sauce and is reduced to 6 cups, stirring occasionally, about 1 hour 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. (Can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and chill. Rewarm over low heat before continuing.)

Preheat oven to 375°F. Cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to bite. Drain well.

Return pasta to same pot. Toss with 3 tablespoons oil. Pour sauce over and toss to blend. Mix in Havarti cheese. Transfer pasta to 13x9x2-inch glass baking dish. Sprinkle with olives, then Parmesan. Bake until pasta is heated through, about 30 minutes. Sprinkle with basil.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Outdoor Wednesday

hur⋅ry:  to move, proceed, or act with haste

bliss: supreme happiness; utter joy or contentment

free⋅dom:  the state of being free or at liberty rather than in confinement or under physical restraint

It's Outdoor Wednesday hosted by the wonderful Susan at a Southern Daydreamer
and my entry for Barbara's Waterside Wednesday and let's not forget the Beach Party hosted by
the shabby chic cottage !

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Mississippi Mud Cake

This has been requested as 'birthday cake' for 2 years in a row from one of my sons, so I guess it must be good !
While the 'cake' is not too sweet, the frosting/marshmallow topping is uber sweet, so it balances out. Here's what you need:

I love it the next day best, not sure why.
Mississippi Mud Cake {recipe courtesy of Southern Livings 30 years of our best recipes cookbook.}

1 cup butter or margarine
1/2 cup cocoa
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs, slightly beaten
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 dash salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

4 cups mini marshmallows


1 (16 ounce) package powdered sugar, sifted

1/2 cup milk
1/3 cup cocoa
1/4 cup softened butter or margarine

Preheat oven to 350°F.
Lightly grease a 9x13 inch pan.
Melt the butter in a medium saucepan.

Add the cocoa and stir.
Remove from the heat.

Pour butter mixture into a mixing bowl and add sugar and eggs.
Mix until blended.
Add the vanilla.
Mix in the flour and salt.

Spoon batter into a lightly greased 13 x 9 inch pan.

Bake at 350 for 35 minutes.

Remove from oven and sprinkle with marshmallows over hot cake.
Immediately spread frosting over marshmallows on cake. Cool in pan on a wire rack.

Cut into squares to serve. (Chill before slicing for neater squares, but I've always skipped that part !)

Hosted by the wonderful Kimba for DIY Day !

Monday, August 24, 2009

Oh so blue

How ironic...It's Blue Monday...and so perfectly matches my mood !

I'm blue because it's the end of summer.

I'm blue because school starts tomorrow for my boys.

I'm blue because I hate the sound of an empty house (even though it's not completely empty- I still have my daughter around... but boys sure make a lot of noise !)

And I'm blue because I'm still traumatized over my son's injuries last week.

I had to take down the post because all it did was make me sad when I saw it.

But for all of those who left a word of comfort and support, I thank you from the bottom of my heart !

And now for Blue Monday hosted by Smiling Sally

(Photos taken on a weekend getaway !)

A fabulous chocolaty recipe and a new giveaway is on the way...stay tuned !

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Home Fries

I can't tell you how excited I am right now. Seriously. You all know I have a cozy kitchen. That also means a cozy town, where there isn't a Denny's or Bob Evans or IHOP around to go out to breakfast. When we take trips, my children are most excited when we go out to breakfast. One of my sons actually day dreams of hash browns at diners!! I've tried my best to make hash browns or home fries for years with disastrous results. I mean hard can it be ? ( Evidently VERY hard for me.) I can't even manage to make those "Simply Potatoes" in the green package come out right.

Ok... I need to take a deep breath and tell you this. I just made the BEST HOME FRIES I have ever eaten, and they were easy, fast and not greasy ! For a second, I even imagined Guy Fieri standing in my kitchen sampling my home fries with a large wooden spoon, giving the Queen B a knuckle bump and featuring me as his number 1 pick for home fries at the local diners, drive- ins and dives. Don't worry....I snapped out of it quite quickly as the kids were asking for another helping.

I'm not kidding. This is recipe is perfect for me because I have 4 kids...3 of which are BOYS and nothing makes boys happier than a big ol' breakfast on the weekends.
What I love is that now we don't have to wish we had a local diner to go to on the weekends....... The Cozy Kitchen is the diner ! Not to mention how CHEAP this meal is when you serve it with eggs... 2 or 3 potatoes and a dozen eggs ? $5.00 at most to feed a family of six. I'm seriously happy folks.

Quick and easy Home Fries
Recipe courtesy of

3 medium russet potatoes, cubed (keep skin on )
3 tablespoons butter or margarine
salt and pepper to taste

1. Rinse potato cubes with cold water, and drain well. ** MAKE SURE YOU DRY THEM WELL AFTER.**
Melt butter or margarine in a large skillet over medium heat. Place potatoes in the skillet, and stir to coat with butter. Season with salt and pepper. Cover with a lid, and cook for 10 minutes. Remove the lid, and cook for another 10 minutes, turning frequently until brown and crisp on all sides

Friday, August 21, 2009

The Wine Exchange

I've been waiting for this moment all week long !

It's been "one of those weeks" I'd rather forget forever and ever, or if someone could just rewind the clock that would be great too.

Tonight I will introduce
Ruffino's Lumina Pinot Grigio (Italy )
(*I picked this up at Walmart on sale for $8.97 )

I always think that white wines are summer wines, but I can see myself sipping this now and into the fall months, as it has such nice green and citrus hints to it.

I really like it.....Yahooo ! Things are looking up already !

" The bouquet opens with sensations of wild flowers which are immediately sustained by notes of pears and green apples. Refined mineral scents bring elegance and finesse to the wide variety of aromas." from the Ruffino website.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Using, the winner of my first give giveaway is comment #5, who happens to be SeaLaura !
I'm not sure if it was 'fate' or not, but I as you know, I love the Sea, and my sister's name is LAURA, and SeaLaura is a Spanish teacher, and guess where I was born ? Spain !
Congratulations !

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


run - to go quickly by moving the legs more rapidly than at a walk and in such a manner that for an instant in each step all or both feet are off the ground.

sand- the more or less fine debris of rocks, consisting of small, loose grains, often of quartz.
swing - to cause to move to and fro, sway, or oscillate, as something suspended from above

It's Outdoor Wednesday hosted by the wonderful Susan at a Southern Daydreamer !

and the entry for my thematic photo hosted by written inc !

Monday, August 17, 2009

Vintage Find & a priceless moment !

Since my camera is broken, I have to post about this thrifty find I made a few months ago.

Vintage Winter Frost White Corelle, 1970.

{8 cups & saucers, a mere 10 cents each.}

I spent 80 cents.

When I saw these, the first thought that came to mind was this...

Jello !

and I have to say, even my teenage sons thought that eating jello out of these was 'cool'.

And I really must share a priceless moment for me this weekend.

While we were boating, we came upon a school of dolphins ! There were 7, swimming right next to us. All in pairs with a new mama and BABY !!! Oh my gosh, I cannot tell you how excited I was. It was a magical moment. Thankfully I had my cell phone with me. (My new camera needs to get here soon !!!! )Here is the only photo I was able to capture.

And don't forget to stop by Southern Hospitality for more thrifty finds, and Smiling Sally for more blue !

Don't still have time to enter my book giveaway ! Just leave a comment on that post !

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Bathroom Makeover

I forgot to take a 'before' picture, but we used to have a small, white pedestal sink in our downstairs bathroom. The walls were painted a horrible builders grade white flat paint and it was always very uninviting.

My husband ripped out the old sink, and this is what I wanted. More storage and soft blue walls ! {Posted for Kimba's DIY Day! }

{Paint-Benjamin Moore HC-147 Woodlawn Blue}

sink & cabinet & faucet - Lowes

mirror - Target

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Outdoor Wednesday

It's Outdoor Wednesday hosted by the wonderful Susan @ a southern daydreamer
Here is part 2 from last week.

{ My little nieces came for a visit from New York. Oh how they loved the beach }

I snapped this later in the evening when my niece was playing in the surf. When I downloaded my pictures later, I fell in love with her blue reflection !
{ To be continued next week }


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