"I do not claim that I can tell a story as it ought to be told. I only claim to know how a story ought to be told." -Mark Twain


Eating by the dozen(s)!!!!

Meatballs were on the menu over the weekend. I made two pans of them, then a special little third pan.
Hubby and I had one son home with us. One of my sons had gone to Kansas for the weekend, so I made him the special little third pan. I figured when he got back to Oklahoma, he could cook them and have his own little meal.
Well, that's what I get for thinking!
Instead when #2 son got back from Kansas, he immediately ate 12 of the 13 leftover meatballs. Yes, you read that right. He ate 12. In one setting. (This is the same son who ran the 26 mile marathon and took down stone walls.)
Why he left that one lone leftover meatball is beyond me.
So yesterday for lunch I cooked the special pan that I had made for him. It had six meatballs in it.
I had three of them and a salad. It was perfect. 
Twelve??? Really???
I have no idea why I am still shocked at the things "kids" do.
I say "kids" because he is 24!!!!
I make my meatballs about golf ball size. Some might be a little bigger. A few might be a tad smaller.
We usually like to serve them over rice (that I add a packet of onion soup mix to), baked beans and cornbread.
(Obviously as you can see) it is one of our favorites.
The meatballs are fast and super easy to make.
You can made them as spicy as you wish.
Eating them with salad was delicious too.

By the way...you know the other three in that pan from lunch yesterday that I did not eat?  
#2 son absconded with them too!
If you make these...make plenty.
You never know who will make off with them!

2 pounds ground beef
1 cup quick-cook oats (you can add more)
1 cup milk (I use canned if I have it)
1 packet of onion soup mix OR 3 or 4 tbs. finely chopped onion
spices to taste (I use garlic salt, red pepper flakes, pepper)
Combine all these ingredients in a large bowl. Get your hands in it and mix it all together.
After you have it mixed well, form the meat mixture into balls. I suppose you could use a cookie scoop or ice cream scoop for this. I just use my hands.
Spray a pan and set your meatballs in it. Mine usually touch each other, as I am trying to stuff as many in a pan as possible.

BBQ SAUCE that makes them absolutely DELICIOUS
In a saucepan put:
2 cups ketchup
3/4 -1 cup of brown sugar
2 tbs. liquid smoke (very important)
Heat this up till it is combined and smooth.
Drizzle these over your meatballs and bake in a 350 degree oven.
The time depends on the size of meatball you made. Mine usually take 20 minutes for golf ball size. 
Oh...one more thing: You do realize that I always double that recipe! (Sometimes even triple it.....) But I thought I would throw out the regular recipe for normal families! 
Sharing with Foodie Friday


Magnolias "Steel" my heart!

We have a magnolia tree that is so full of blossoms it looks like the limbs are bending.
Oh heavenly smell!!
The area under this tree by the way, is getting ready to get
fresh sod.
My sons and Hubs put a new fence in
and moved the fence so we have more back yard.
The front yard is already big enough.
I always wanted a magnolia tree in my yard.
Every time I look at the delicate flowers
I can't help but think of the term
"steel magnolia".

"If you can't find anything good to say about anybody, then come sit by me."

Truthfully, the tree can be a pain in the but.
They are shedders. All year long.
In the spring they are shedding the little filaments from the 
stamen. They fly everywhere.

"In a good shoe, I wear a size six, but a seven feels so good, I buy a size eight."

Then the stamen falls off onto the ground.

" Honey, time marches on and eventually you realize it is marchin' across your face. "

The flower does not have a long lifespan. Before the leaves fall off, they turn brown. Even that is pretty when on the tree though.

" Well, we went skinny dipping and we did things that 

frightened the fish." 

Not to mention the big beautiful green waxy leaves that are shedding fools! I'm telling you, there is something shedding on this tree the entire year round!

" The only reason people are nice to me is because I have more money than God. "

No matter, I wouldn't get rid of the tree for anything.
I love it that it still has green leaves all winter long.
I love that you can use the green winter leaves for Christmas decorating!

"There's so much static electricity in this room, I pick up everything but boys and money. "

I love that they love the southern weather and persevere through our heat!

" I'm not as sweet as I used to be. "

I sit outside and soak in the aroma while the tree is full of blooms.

" The only thing that separates us from the animals is our ability to accessorize. "

There is nothing better. I am so glad I finally got my wish 
to have my own (shedding) magnolia tree.

" Smile! It increases your face value. "

And sometimes I even clip off a bloom 
and bring it in to put it in front of my 
magnolia needlepoint!
I'm telling you, I'm smitten!

" He is a boil on the butt of humanity! "

(All quotes in italics are some of the memorable lines
Steel Magnolias!)


Rescuing the Barn

When we moved from Kansas to Oklahoma four years ago, it was quite an ordeal. We had lived in our big Victorian for 17 years. Our five children had spent all their formative years there. The house had two complete stories, a full attic (accessible by stairs from the second floor) and a full basement. While all this room lent itself to a wonderland to play in while growing up, it also allowed us to accumulate stuff. And when you have five children you tend to "collect". 

Not only that, but I tend to be the hoarder and Hubby tends to be the "thrower". (As in throw it away.....Unless of course it has to do with anything sporty or ball!)
Such was the case of this little barn.
Hubs threw it away in Kansas while we were packing up.
I saved it.(secretly)
I could picture Fielding (now 30) playing with that for hours with a little tractor and animals.
It stayed in the garage for three years after the move to Oklahoma. That's okay, still better than the trash!
When we moved to the new (old) house last year, the barn got to come in doors. Then it sat in its well-played-with-patina. That was fine with me, but I figured I could make it a little more presentable. (Back view above)
So I painted the barn red and the roof black (using chalkboard paint). That way if Leightyn or any (future) grandchildren want to write on it with chalk, then so be it!
My family has a farming operation where we raise wheat and cattle which is called "Ferguson Farms". I had a kazillion black letters that have little pins on the back. I decided to try it out, and I liked it. Yes, I realize it is black on black (as my children pointed out) but I like it!
The whole paint and letter job took less than 30 minutes. It was just something fun to do one day after school. I have it sitting in our study, next to a little hand-carved horse I got in Cherokee, North Carolina.
I hung these two pics behind the table where the barn sits. The first sign is an antique advertising sign and the bottom sign actually came from one of the oil wells on one of the farms. I liked the way it all tied in together.
And yes, I realize many would find these signs odd to 
hand in a home!
Oh well!!!!
A quick, cute little project.
A barn saved!!!
Now it's ready for the next generation of farmers!
Linking with:


When "No Good" came to the Neighborhood!!--Tell All Tuesday

I have mentioned before (several million times) how our new (old) house is in an idyllic neighborhood.

The neighborhood decorates for each season.

We have "block" parties, that are really "neighborhood" parties. They welcome the "newbies" like us, and tell us the neighborhood lore.

At the end of our block sits this house. Yes, house. It is owned by a couple. The house, called The Dominion House,(oh my gosh, check out the web site!!) was an orphanage in its former life. Before being bought and renovated. It is now used as a fabulous place to get married...or just hold a party.
Sometimes block parties are held here.
The couple that own it, live in the gardeners 3000+ sq. ft. "cottage" in the back.

We have cute little trolley's that 
come by every day several times,
giving tourists the grand tour.

These are our neighbors that live across the street.
The husband is a drug deputy in a neighboring county. 
He keeps his "drug dog" in his back yard.
His wife is a professor at OSU in the veterinary school.
Last night Mr. Deputy-in-another-county had gotten off 
work and was in his driveway (where you can see his police car if you look closely)
talking to a police dispatcher friend
from this town.
The dispatcher had just gotten off work too.
While they were in their driveway talking, they saw 
three figures run through my yard.
So Mr. Deputy and Mr. Dispatcher 
stealthfully ran around to the front of his house 
and hid in the bushes.
They watched as the three figures went
into our garage and tried to break in
to each of our cars.
This was really just a matter of minutes.
In the meantime they called the local police.
Then Mr. Deputy and Mr. Dispatcher sprang into action.
They crossed the street into my yard and each of them 
grabbed one of the perpetrators. 
The third one tried to get away, 
but somehow
Mr. Deputy-in-another-county and Mr. Dispatcher
trapped #3 all the while holding onto #1 and #2.
Actually #1 tried to get away, but Mr. Deputy-in-another-county put his foot out and lassoed him at the knee.
(So cool!!)
By then the local police were on the scene.
Apparently this trio had been quite busy over the last several months throughout our quaint little town.
They had a fourth accomplice that drove the car and hid
in the alley's waiting on #1, #2, and #3 to bring the loot.
The accomplice "got away" last night, but
according to the police
they now know who they are looking for.
In the meantime, all the commotion got the attention
of my children that were home.
My son Coulter and my daughter Taylor went outside to 
see what was going on.
 The trio were 
handcuffed and sitting in our yard
while the police investigated.
The police tolf them how our neighbor sprang into action
and stopped the robbers before they 
got off with loot from our house or cars.
I think it was the fact that they trapped #3 beside 
my daughter's car...
or just the fact that someone had the gall to do that
in our neighborhood...
but it did not set well with Taylor.
According to 
Mr. Deputy-in-another-county
my "spitfire daughter" went ballistic
on the would-be-robbers.
He said she "got in their faces" and "read them the riot act".
She told them if they were in school or had jobs
then they would be too tired to go out robbing
people that work hard for what they have.
Mr. Deputy-in-another-county said that Taylor
"shouted" at the trio everything he always wants to say.
He was very impressed.
I told Taylor that I didn't know if what she did 
was commendable
or stupid.
I hope they don't seek revenge for having a girl tell them off!
In the meantime,
my neighbor and his buddy 
broke up the local theft ring.
We did not lose a single thing.
I did make sure that 
Mr. Deputy-in-another county and 
Mr. Dispatcher knew
how much I appreciated what they did!


Faking It!!!

My oldest friend in the world....as in I-have-known-her-the-longest-old.....not old-woman-old......emailed me today and told me she missed me being a regular blogger. I hate being called on the carpet! I have no excuses. It is summer and the living is easy.
 It is part laziness.
Part laziness and part that my inner-voice tells me every single day, "Uhmmmm Lo (that's what my family uses for my knickname)...who do you really think anyone cares what your house looks like? Or what you cook? Or that you were struck by lightning? Or that you locked yourself out on your balcony while wearing a swimsuit? Or that you have an adorable new granddaughter?  
So by the time my inner-voice has talked to my
lazy voice, they have worked together to conspire for me to  
not write.
Then I get emails that leave me guilt-ridden...
and so I look around for something to write!
So tonight I am sharing 
how I fake it.
I fake it in many rooms
in my home.
My faking comes in 
many different forms.
But each one is good.
(At least I think so!)

I even like to fake it
on the table.
Smack dab in the middle of the table.
Who else would do that?

I even fake it on holidays.
Every little chance I get.

And you know where else I fake it?
And everyone can see????

Smack dab in the middle of the front door.

And if they didn't figure out I fake it
at the front door...
Then surely those that come to the back door
know I fake it.
I do absolutely nothing to hide it.
In fact, I flaunt it.
Table tops, mantels, cabinets, holidays, 
doors...you name it.
I fake it.
And fake it well.
(At least I think so!)
You did catch on that I was 
talking about 
using fake greenery
and fake flowers right?

Do you ever fake it?

This is for you Lisa.....Hope you enjoyed it!
Linking up with:
Wow Us Wednesday


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