Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Christmas Crack.....because it's that addicting.

For the last two years I have made Christmas Crack for my family and friends and each year I get blamed for everyone gaining wait because of their "crack" addiction. I also get asked for the recipe so this year I decided to write it out. This is an easy and quick recipe for that last minute Christmas party you have to go to and forgot to grab something to take or honestly for any party anytime of the year. It's so easy my 11 year old can do but with supervision because the butter/sugar boil gets very hot and can be very dangerous.

Christmas Crack


1 Sleeve Saltine Crackers
3/4 cup Brown Sugar (I used light brown sugar)
1 cup Salted Butter
1 pkg Chocolate Chips ( I used milk chocolate this time but I have also used white chocolate)
Crushed Peppermint (or pecans or even those little sprinkles you put on cupcakes)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees and line a 10x15 cookie sheet with tin foil ( I used the non-stick Reynold's wrap and skipped the greasing of the foil) Spray with Pam or grease very lightly with butter. Cover the cookie sheet with a single layer of crackers. Bring butter and brown sugar to a boil. Boil for 3 minutes stirring with a  whisk (this is really a suggested time....depending on the weather and my stove I have boiled it for as little as 1 1/2 minutes to the 3 minutes, you basically want it to be melted and mixed thoroughly) Pour over the saltines and try to spread as evenly as possible. Place in the oven and bake for 5 minutes. When you remove it the caramel will be molten and boiling so be careful! Allow to cool about 3 minutes (again this is a suggested time....I usually only do about 2 you want it to still be hot so it will melt the chocolate) or until you can clearly see the crackers. Push the crackers gently back into place. Sprinkle chocolate chips over the toffee and let sit for about 5 minutes to melt. (yeah again I am impatient and after about 2-3 minutes I start slowly and gently spreading the chocolate) Once melted spread chocolate evenly. If you have a topping to add then add it now. You can either let you Christmas Crack cool on the counter if you have time or if you are in a hurry (like I usually am) you can place it in the fridge or freezer (if you are really running late). Once the Christmas Crack is set you break it up ( I do this by hitting it with a wooden spoon or knife) this is where the "crack" part of the name comes from. It should look like you dropped it and it cracked into a bunch of piece. Put on a cute plate or in a cute container, serve and wait for everyone to blame you for all weight gained and ask for the recipe.

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Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Today we say until we meet again

Watching The Voice today and one of the singers asked a question before singing her song. She asked "Y'all ever loved somebody so much but you had to let them go anyway?" For the friends and family of Nicholas Renato Baer today is the day we have to let him go. For anyone that knew Nick their life was better for it. He had a way to instantly make you feel like family. Nick was always making everyone laugh, seriously you couldn't stay upset in his presence.

Just ask anyone that met Nick, I assure you they will have a story to tell. They will laugh and cry and laugh some more. Nick had a way of bringing out the fun in everyone. Everyone that knew him loved him. There are just not enough words to truly explain Nick...he was awesome!

For those left behind there will always be questions the main one being why? A senseless act of violence and a son, a soon to be husband, and a father was taken from us. The world is a little less bright without him, there will be a lot less laughs and definitely a lot less crazy stories. Nick was one of a kind, a shinning star that will always be with us.

Today we say so long for now...we will see you again. You will be greatly missed and always dearly loved.

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Monday, June 4, 2012

Good-Bye Tater, we will always love you

Memorial Day weekend was a very sad weekend for my family. We had to put our family dog, Tater, to sleep. If you don't mind I would like to tell you a little about him, share some pictures and give you some information I wish someone had given us a long time ago.

In October 2009 I was on one of my weekly (every other day) trips to Wal-Mart when I noticed a lady sitting on the grassy landing in the parking lot giving puppies away. As I drove by I noticed they were small puppies and I just had to stop and see. The instant I held Tater in my hands I knew I was taking him home, he was the runt and completely adorable.

I went into Wal-Mart and bought everything I needed for my new little guy and then headed home to tell Matt. 

Matt was at the neighbors helping them with a storage shed and I walked into their yard holding Tater in my arms and telling Matt I couldn’t resist. Needless to say after Matt saw him he couldn’t resist either and once Bella saw him it was all over. We had a new family member. Later that day we went to my office and played with him while trying to think of what to name him. Matt was eating some fries and tater begged for one so Matt gave it to him. A little later we took not of a cute brown spot on his back that was shaped like a tater-tot and we decided to name him Tater.
Over the next 2 years we got to love Tater and he loved us back in the ways only a dog can like waking us up at the break of dawn barking at the neighbors, or howling at the truck every time we left or came home. It’s funny I would get so mad about his barking and waking me up but now it’s one of the things I really miss. 

Matt would take Tater on the boat and Bella played with him every chance she got. He was a wonderful pet. He has a great personality and could always bring a smile to your face even when you were mad at him for waking you up.

I look back now and wish I had taken him everywhere with us and walked him more and played with him more. Man life gets in the way when you let doesn't it. We loved him but I will always wonder if we could have done more.

Thursday, May 24, 2012 my dad let Tater out like he did every morning and Tater took just a few steps and then lay down, he wouldn’t eat or drink anything. We thought maybe he was dehydrated so we brought him back inside and put him in front of the fan. After Matt got home from work we realized Tater was getting worse and decided to take him to the Vet ER.

Turns out he was dehydrated but he was also severely anemic. Normal Red Blood Cell count is 37% for dogs like Tater, but his was at 12%. They warned us that giving him fluids would help with the dehydration but could cause him to have breathing and/or heart problems because it would thin his blood. We gave them permission to give fluids and planned to pick him up the next day to take him to a regular vet.

When we went to get him they told us he wasn’t better and that he had a violent throwing up fit early that morning. In the bile was onion.  We took him to the regular vet and they gave us a list of test they wanted to do and told us they wanted to keep him on fluids and reevaluate in the AM. Saturday we went in to see how things were going and the vet said that Tater was real weak and that he wanted to take a blood sample and see if his bone marrow was making any Red Blood Cells. An hour later we got the call to come in. 

We go to spend a little time with Tater, loving on him and saying our goodbyes. It broke my heart seeing Bella hold him and love on him knowing it was the last time she would be able to. She decided to stay in the room and we were all loving on him as the vet gave him the shot. He fell asleep before the shot was even over, so peaceful. 

We love you Tater, you were a great dog and a very much loved member of our family. We will miss you and remember you always. I hope you are at peace now and chasing birds in Heaven. I hope you know how much we love you and miss you.

What happened:

A few days before my dad had fed Tater a left over burger that had onions on it. He had no idea, we had no idea that onions were toxic to dogs; most of my friends that are doggie owners had no idea in talking with them. Onions cause the bone marrow to shut down and no longer produce the red blood cells. Once the bone marrow shuts down there is nothing that can be done. It was a hard horrible lesson to learn, so I am telling you this so you know NEVER feed your dog the following because it can kill them.

Artificial Sweeteners

Thank you to the wonderful staff at Pine Forest Animal Clinic for loving on Tater for us and doing everything in your power. Thank you to all the friends and family that prayed and loved on us. It has meant the world to us. I know this is not the best writing I have done but it was some of the hardest to get through please forgive any grammar or spelling mistakes.

And do me a favor if you have a family dog go love on him/her for me.

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Saturday, April 14, 2012

If I'm Being Honest...

If you were truly honest with yourself what would you say? Sometimes it's hard to see the truth and face it. But that is my goal because if we can face it then we can improve on it. So, If I'm Being Honest....

  • I procrastinate on things I don’t want to do, when I know it would only take me a little bit to finish them.
  • I hide my insecurities with humor and a tough outer shell.
  • I have no will power.
  • I hate the body I see in the mirror but I feel like it will never change.
  • I am bigger now than I have ever been.
  • I worry I will never have another baby.
  • I get sad every time I see someone pregnant with a baby that isn’t their first.
  • I don’t think my dad is proud of me. If he is I wish he would tell me.
  • I wish my husband were more romantic.
  • I wish I didn’t have to worry about money.
  • I worry I will never outlive my past.
  • I really need my studio to take off because right now I feel like a failure.
  • I still try way too hard to please people that don’t matter.
  • I get misty eyed when Bella ask me to sing her to sleep. I wish she did it more.
  • I still resent my ex.
  • I wish I could craft all day.
  • I worry people won't like me, and I really want them to.
  • I wish I could make a living doing what I love.
  • I sometimes don’t know who my real friends are.
  • I really want to have the wedding I never had.
  • I dream of my husband proposing like he never got to do.
  • I am still finding ME.

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