Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Privation Printing

My son Tim and his wife Shelley have an entrepreneurial spirit. Always an admirable trait in anyone, I believe. They have started a new business "Privation Printing" and they do custom graphic apparel printing with no minimum order.
"Privation Printing is here. . .We have full custom graphics printing and NO MINIMUM Order! Silk Screening and Dye Sublimation to help your cause get recognized. Don't forget to check out our graphic printed tees!"

They have several custom art shirts that are numbered. Once they've sold out, they won't print those shirts again.

The Drama Llama is one of my very favorites. I am hoping that Drama Llama shows up in many designs in the future!!

They also showcase Josh Stebbins, an artist from Enid, Oklahoma.

 art work by Josh Stebbins

You can find them: 

       on Face Book https://www.facebook.com/PrivationPrinting

       on Etsy http://www.etsy.com/shop/PrivationPrinting?ref=seller_info

       email privation.project@gmail.com

I am a HUGE fan of Downton Abbey and so had a shirt made in honor of the new season!!

Free Bates

I do want to add, these are very good quality shirts. I was really reluctant to have a "white" one but it is good thick fabric and I LOVE it. 

 I really love to see young families start their own businesses. I do hope you will support 

Privation Printing



Monday, July 30, 2012

Things to do in Wichita - 4 "Air Capital Chorus"

Air Capital Chorus

Randy is a genealogy buff. He enjoys the search, the learning about his family and he loves history. He also loves doing this research for others, too. He did some genealogy searches for his brother-in-law Larry Simmons and Larry very generously gave us tickets to the "Midnight Serenade" performance of the Air Capital Chorus that he sings with. (Larry is second from the left on the front row.)

So with friends, Ron and Gale Briscoe, we spent the evening enjoying great music and great company!

Ron and Gale are always kissing!! : )

The performance was held in the Scottish Rite Center Auditorium. We tried to take our pictures so you could see the beautiful detail in this building!

This is the ceiling. 

 The Air Capital Chorus is a non-profit organization for the education of men in Barbershop Harmony and is made up of men of all ages (one of their singers is 15) from Wichita and the surrounding area.  You can learn more about them on their web site you can find HERE.

You can find their schedule on this web site and also book them if you need music for an event. Randy and I are looking forward to their Christmas show at the Orpheum.

At the "Midnight Serenade" they presented a wide variety of music. Such as "New York, New York" (one of my personal favorites) "Mister Cellophane," "Don't Rain on My Parade," "All that Jazz" and much more. We had a great time and really encourage you to check them out and go to some of their events. - Or book them!  : )  Can't say that too much!!

At Intermission, they had "Dominate Prep" a quartet from St. Louis, MO. They were very entertaining and I am going to do a separate blog about them.

I've always enjoyed good harmony. Air Capital Chorus delivered great music, great laughs and wonderful harmony!!

Thank you Larry and Carol for a wonderful evening of harmony!!

The Great Cook Off - Baked Pesto Chicken

The above link is the blog that first posted this recipe. Her recipe is more exact than mine.

Baked Pesto Chicken is another recipe I've pinned on pinterest. We tried it this weekend and had a great meal!!

It was easy to prepare and every one liked it. The scores ranged from 3's to 5's. I served this with penne pasta.

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
salt and pepper to season chicken ( I inadvertently left this step out)
1/2 cup basil pesto ( I just used a small jar and didn't measure - used it all)
2 oz grated mozzarella cheese

Preheat oven to 375. Cut the chicken breasts into smaller pieces.
Spray 9X13 baking dish with non-stick spray, then spread basil pesto over the bottom of the dish - just enough to cover. Lay chicken strips over the pesto, then pour rest of small jar over the top.

Cover the baking dish with aluminum foil and bake the chicken for 25 - 30 minutes.

Then remove foil and sprinkle chicken with grated cheese - I think I probably used about a cup instead of the 1/2 cup called for. (this recipe serves 4 and I was serving 5 so I was very generous with my measurements)

Put back into oven without foil and cook 5 more minutes just until cheese is melted. Then broil for about 5 minutes to brown the cheese.

Serve hot. I served over the penne pasta.

It seems to be a very rich dish so I do suggest serving with pasta, rice or something else.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Do It TODAY......

This weekend, I watched/listened to "The Music Man" 4 times with some of the grands. I can't get too much of "The Music Man."  : )

One of the lines in this movie is "You pile up enough tomorrows, and you'll find you are left with nothing but a lot of empty yesterdays." WOW... That is a powerful statement. Harold is trying to get Marion to go to the "foot bridge" with him and we know he's wanting a kiss! But take this line out of the movie and BOOM. 

When that toddler wants you to make some memories and you have a deadline or are just too busy - "We'll do it tomorrow."  Then that toddler is 18...

Your husband wants you to set with him this evening a visit - or just watch a tv show with him but you have dishes to do - or laundry... Then one of these days he stops asking...

Your wife and kids want you to take a walk with them, but you are too tired from work... The kids grow up and your wife has replaced time spent with you with a hobby or something else...

 Challenge yourself, for one week try not to say "I'll do it with you tomorrow." See if it makes a difference with your child, your spouse or just inside yourself. Make those memories - and make them starting today!!


Saturday, July 28, 2012

The Great Cook Off - Fresh Tomato and Mozzarella on Toast

I pinned this on pinterest from www.yummly.com

Fresh Tomato and Mozzarella on Toast

1/2 baguette (french, sliced)
2 sliced tomatoes
1 1/2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
Italian seasoning
olive oil
balsamic vinegar

1. To prepare, slice tomatoes and french bread.
2. Toast the slices of french bread in the toaster.
3. Place the toasted french bread pieces on aluminum foil or baking pan.
4. Put one layer of tomato slices on each piece of french bread.
5. Sprinkle mozzarella cheese on top of each piece.
6. Bake in toaster oven until cheese is melted.
7. Take out of oven and drizzle a small amount of olive oil and balsamic vinegar on top.
8. Sprinkle Italian seasoning and salt and pepper to taste on top.
9. Enjoy!

I really enjoyed this for lunch. I didn't add salt but did add a touch of garlic powder. I don't have a toaster oven so put mine under the broiler in the oven. The recipe doesn't call for onion but it shows in the picture so I will add a bit of sliced onion next time.

The boys wouldn't try it. Randy and Josie gave it 2's and I gave it a 4.

Quick and easy lunch - great for using fresh tomatoes.

Friday, July 27, 2012

The Great Cook Off - Salisbury Steak

Slow Cooker Salisbury Steak

I like Slow Cooker recipes so this one was right down my alley!! We had it last evening.

     2 lbs lean ground beef 
     1 (1 oz) envelope dry onion soup mix
     1/2 cup Italian seasoned bread crumbs
     1/4 cup milk
     1/4 cup all-purpose flour
     2 tablespoons vegetable oil
     2 (10.75 ounce) cans condensed cream of chicken soup
     1 (1 oz) packet dry au jus mix
     3/4 cup water

     1. In a large bowl, mix together the ground beef, onion soup mix, bread crumbs, and milk using your hands. Shape into 8 patties.

     2. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Dredge the patties in flour just to coat, and quickly brown on both sides in the hot skillet.  Place browned patties into the slow cooker stacking alternately like a pyramid.  In a medium bowl, mix together the cream of chicken soup, au jus mix and water. Pour over the meat.  Cook on the low setting for 4 or 5 hours, until ground beef is well done.

(this recipe is from allrecipes.com)

I made the patties and put into the slow cooker the night before. The next day, I browned them and added all ingredients to the cooker and cooked for about 4.5 hours. It was a very easy meal to prepare! Has great leftovers! 

Very Good, Easy meal.
I highly recommend this recipe.

There were 2 adults, 2 boys - 14 and 12, and a 10 year old girl. We had 3 patties left. One is plenty per person. I served with mashed potatoes and green beans. The "gravy" from the salisbury steaks was delicious on the mashed potatoes.

I'm going to fix this complete recipe, divide it into 4 containers and take to my Mom and Dad for them to freeze. 

This meal got four 5's and one 4. 
(the 4 was from me)

I try to use as little salt as possible when cooking and I never add salt to my food. I thought this recipe tasted salty. No one else noticed the salty taste so it was probably just me.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

The Great Cook Off Weekend

Last night started our Great Cook Off. I decided it doesn't do me a bit of good "pinning" recipes and never trying them!! So beginning last night, we are only cooking new recipes through the weekend!

Last night was fun, easy and a big hit!!

We fixed "Mini Tacos" - for the original web site click HERE.

     Brown 1 lb lean ground beef
     Add taco seasoning to meat (I just used an envelope of taco seasoning)

     While that is browning, spray 2 - 12 muffin - muffin tins with non-stick spray
     Place 1 wonton wrap in each muffin tin
     Fill uncooked wontons with beef and top with shredded cheese
     Bake at 350 for 8 minutes.

From beginning to end it only took me about 40 minutes to have dinner on the table. Plus I fixed guacamole and salsa during this time.

They were delicious. 24 fed 2 adults, a 14 year old boy, a 12 year old boy and an 11 year old girl!! With no left overs. Everyone really liked them. 

The mini tacos got four 5's and one 4!!! 

I highly recommend this recipe.



Monday, July 23, 2012

New Recipe

My favorite "go to" website for recipes is allrecipes.com.  I would highly recommend it to anyone.

Every once in a while, we like breakfast for dinner. One of my daughters had told me about this recipe and we tried it on a Sunday evening. We loved it.

Hope you'll try it.

From Allrecipes.com

French Toast Stars  (serves 4) (only served 2 at my house)
  • 8 thick slices white bread (I only used 6 slices of bread - but did not make into shapes either)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream (I used half and half)
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange zest ( I only used 1 teaspoon but will use more next time)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons butter


  1. Place a slice of bread on a cutting board. Align a star-shaped cookie cutter in the center of the slice. Push the cookie cutter through the bread, rocking it gently back and forth. Once the cookie cutter makes it all the way through bread, remove bread outside the cutter. Hold the cutter down on the bread during this step to prevent the star from tearing. Use a sharp knife to trim any bread that lingers outside the cookie cutter. Gently remove the star from the cutter and put aside. Repeat on all slices of bread. (I did not make stars, just used the whole slice of bread)
  2. In a medium bowl, beat together eggs, whipping cream, honey, salt, cinnamon, orange zest and vanilla extract.
  3. In a griddle or frying pan, melt the butter over medium high heat.
  4. Dip both sides of the stars in the egg mixture and carefully transfer to the hot griddle. Brown on both sides and transfer to a warm plate while remaining stars cook. Serve hot. 

Saturday, July 21, 2012

So you STILL think God is a merciful God?!

Reblogged from "A Miniature Claypot"


So you STILL think God is a merciful God?!

(Maybe, just maybe God spared my life because He loves YOU and wants you to hear this..He wants you to believe that He loved you so much He gave His only begotten Son that if you would believe in Him you would have eternal life.)

So, you still believe in a merciful God?”  Some of the comments online are genuinely inquisitive, others are contemptuous in nature. Regardless of the motive behind the question, I will respond the same way.


Yes, I do indeed.

Absolutely, positively, unequivocally.

Let’s get something straight: the theater shooting was an evil, horrendous act done by a man controlled by evil.  God did not take a gun and pull the trigger in a crowded theater. He didn’t even suggest it. A man did.

In His sovereignty, God made man in His image with the ability to choose good and evil.
Unfortunately, sometimes man chooses evil.

I was there in theater 9 at midnight, straining to make out the words and trying to figure out the story line as The Dark Night Rises began. I’m not a big movie-goer. The HH and I prefer to watch movies in the comfort of our own home…where I can use subtitles and get a foot rub. I don’t like action movies. And I don’t like midnight showings.  But, as I wrote in my last post, parents sometimes make sacrifices for their kiddos and I decided I would take my fourteen year old and sixteen year old daughters who were chomping at the bit to see this eagerly anticipated third movie in the Batman Trilogy. Twice I had the opportunity to back out and twice I was quite tempted. But something in me said just go with your girls. I did.

So I was there with them, fidgeting in my seat, some forty or  fifty feet away from the man with the gun. It’s still a bit surreal, but I do know that when the seemingly endless shooting started, as my girls were struggling from whatever gas or chemical had been released, and we figured out what was happening, we hit the floor. I threw myself on top of my fourteen year old who was on the end of the row, straight up the aisle from the shooter.  In that moment, as the rapid-fire shots continued, I truly thought I was going to die. And I realized that I was ready. I have put my faith and trust in Jesus Christ as the redeemer of my soul, and there wasn’t the slightest doubt that I would be received into heaven, not because of any good thing that I have done but because of His merciful nature and the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Still, as I lay over my daughter, I began praying out loud. I don’t even remember what I prayed, but I don’t imagine it really matters. I’m sure it was for protection and peace. It drew me closer into the presence of God. When there was a pause in the shooting, people began to clamor for the exits. The girls and I jumped up and joined the masses. We had to step over a lifeless body, not knowing where the shooter was. We raced to our car and I dumped my purse, frantically searching for keys, looking all around, prepared to hit the ground. I yelled at Michelle to call Matthew and find out if he had made it out of the theater next door. She did. He did. We booked on out of there.

Why would you think such a tragedy would make me question the goodness of God? If anything, both of my girls said it made Him a much more real presence to them; the youngest shared this verse: Do not be afraid of sudden fear nor of the onslaught of the wicked when it comes; for the LORD will be your confidence and will keep your feet from being caught. 

He is not the cause of evil, but He is the one who can bring comfort and peace in the midst of evil.  It’s been amazing to see the outpouring of love from so many people after this unthinkable act.  Yes, there was one evil act, but it is being covered by thousands, possibly millions of acts of kindness.
We have not yet slept, so the girls and I are overtired and a bit emotional.  But overall, we are praising God and resting in His Goodness.   I love this word of wisdom and encouragement from a former pastor of mine:

Up to this point I haven’t had words to say that would matter. Of course we are all glad that you and the family are safe. Of course we would all state the obvious that this is horrific and senseless. But those words still don’t carry weight that remain in the midst of the questions. Then it hit me… Do you know what the difference was between Job and his wife in their response to the tragedy of losing everything… Job 1:20 Job was the only one that worshiped in the midst of it. Marie, I know your heart and I’ve seen your worship lived out before your family. Before the weight of this becomes unbearable… worship. Your profile pic was not coincidence, not by accident that you changed it on July 15th, but a beautiful foreshadowing of your need to hear the cry of your heart and give Him praise. 

Though we don’t have all the answers, we do indeed listen to the cry of our hearts: When I am afraid, I will put my trust in You. In God, whose word I praise, In God I have put my trust; I shall not be afraid. What  can mere man  do to me? Psalm 56:3-4

God is always good.

Man is not.

Don’t get the two confused.

We will continue to praise and worship our mighty God, anticipating that He will bring beauty from ashes, as only He can do.

If you want to know how to pray for us: first and foremost, we need sleep. Somehow our bodies seem too wired. We also want the life that God has graciously allowed us to continue to live to not be a gift given in vain, we want our lives to draw others closer to Him. We do not want fear to dominate, for God has not given us a spirit of fear. We want His joy to be seen and experienced in all that we do.
Pray for the families who lost loved ones, and for young people who witnessed such horror. Pray for this to be an opportunity for God to manifest Himself in mighty ways.
As for you…we will pray that YOU might know His goodness.

Still grateful for this wonderful life,

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Wednesday Wisdom

Wisdom...  Having children can prove to you how much wisdom you DON'T have..

This morning I was thinking of quotes about parenting. I found more quotes than there are kids!! Let me post a few for our Wednesday Wisdom.

There is only one pretty child in the world, and every mother has it.  ~Chinese Proverb

Never raise your hand to your kids.  It leaves your groin unprotected.  ~Red Buttons

Smack your child every day.  If you don't know why - he does.  ~Joey Adams
When my kids become wild and unruly, I use a nice, safe playpen.  When they're finished, I climb out.  ~Erma Bombeck

I love to play hide and seek with my kid, but some days my goal is to find a hiding place where he can't find me until after high school.  ~Author Unknown

Humans are the only animals that have children on purpose with the exception of guppies, who like to eat theirs.  ~P.J. O'Rourke

Always end the name of your child with a vowel, so that when you yell, the name will carry.  ~Bill Cosby

Setting a good example for your children takes all the fun out of middle age.  ~William Feather, The Business of Life, 1949

Parents are not interested in justice; they are interested in quiet.  ~Bill Cosby

Your responsibility as a parent is not as great as you might imagine.  You need not supply the world with the next conqueror of disease or major motion-picture star.  If your child simply grows up to be someone who does not use the word "collectible" as a noun, you can consider yourself an unqualified success.  ~Fran Lebowitz, "Parental Guidance," Social Studies, 1981

Obviously this is a subject that could go on and on but for today I will stop with these. There are many many serious quotes and Scriptures on parenting are numerous but today I was aiming for a smile!  : )

Parenting is the most painful experience a person can have - and I'm not talking about the birth process. It is also the most rewarding experience. Better than any award, accolade, career, - anything. But it is not without pain, tears, heartache and irritation!!

We start the process without a license or without a test to see if we  are qualified. We learn as we go. With the grace of God we succeed.


Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Vera for a Year Event @ Kay Wiggins

I had such a good time at the "Vera for a Year Event" this evening at Kay Wiggins. You can check out their web site HERE.

I am a Vera Bradley fan and when I got an email from "Kay Wiggins" I was very excited. They are giving one lucky winner one bag a month for a year! Their evening of fun included sales, entering the Vera for a Year drawing, homemade fudge, margarita's, dips, breads, and I could go on and on! I had a good time and did a little shopping. Randy asked for fudge! and I got this:

 Vera Bradley Sleeve for my 17 inch laptop.

All in all, a GREAT Tuesday evening!!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Things to do in Wichita! 3

Things to do in Wichita!
Botanica Wichita

My favorite place to visit! The Botanica Wichita Gardens. Randy first brought me here while we were dating and of all the fun things we've done in Wichita, this is my very favorite. I always feel so at home here, so relaxed and I could spend hours wondering the beautiful fragrant grounds. In fact I have so many pictures, I'm not sure how I will choose which ones to post on here.

You can check out their web site HERE. 

" Never Too Big"

 (so sorry, I didn't get the title of this one)

Besides wandering around enjoying this magnificent place, they offer summer programs for children, volunteer opportunities, lunchtime lectures - which we have enjoyed, there are also Birding days - just too many things for me to mention here - and one of our favorites "Tuesday's on the Terrace." Each Tuesday night, the Garden mixes things up with live music, happy hour and horticulture. - It's 5:30 til 7:30. 

There is also a wonderful Butterfly House.

Christmas at Botanica is a wonderland. It is a beautiful exhibition of lights, music, and Christmas Cheer.

 Our friends Ron and Gale.

My Christmas pictures do not do justice to the beauty of the season, they have lights with synchronized music. It's a winter wonderland.

Their most recent addition is the Downing Children's Garden. It is amazing. So much for the kids to do. Be sure and check out the web site for more information.

Each month they exhibit Art in the building. June was Wichita Women's Artists. July is Wichita Needle Arts Guild and August is Lena Hamilton Photography.

A small sample of the Art they are exhibiting this month.

"Botanica, The Wichita Gardens was opened to the public in 1987 to generate enthusiasm for horticulture and enlighten people through educational, artistic, and cultural experiences. With this mission, Botanica’s gardens and programs expand public awareness of horticulture, educate Kansans about how nature can improve their daily lives, and assist in the promotion of community development."

"Since its opening with four gardens and a horticultural library, Botanica has added 20 additional themed gardens and exhibits. This botanical paradise on the plains comprises over nine acres of stunning gardenscaping that features over 3600 species of plants both native and new to the region. All gardens are designed to emphasize collections in display settings that feature plants particularly well-suited to south-central Kansas. In addition to the display gardens, an evaluation garden has been added for the specific purpose of introducing and evaluating plants that may be suited to the region. The Gardens are decorated with a collection of 20 elegant sculptures, flowing streams, fountains, and waterfalls that complement the beauty of plants and that create a visually stunning atmosphere."

I love the Botanica so much and when I got ready to write this blog I realized I really don't have words or even pictures to describe the beauty and the serenity that I find in these beautiful gardens. From a blog I wrote in December of 2010:
"One of my favorite places to go to with Randy is Botanica - The Wichita Gardens. We've been there several times in several seasons and it has been through these trips that I've learned I don't have a favorite flower - I LOVE them all. Walking through the gardens with Randy, stopping to smell, to admire the different artwork of God is one of my favorite things."

 I hope you will take the time to visit Botanica the Wichita Gardens.

701 Amidon Wichita, KS

Hours and Admission

The Gardens are open 9am-5pm, Monday-Saturday, year-round.
Extended, seasonal hours from April-October: 
  • Open Sundays 1-5pm 
  • Tuesday & Thursday nights until 8pm
The Gardens and offices are closed on most major holidays. 


  • Members - FREE
  • Seniors (62+)/Military - $6
  • Adults (13-61) - $7
  • Youth (3-12) - $5
  • Children 2 & Under- FREE
Group admission rates are available for groups of 10 or more.