About Me

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Full Time Mom, Wife, Work, Life - Mom to three children (adults), two are college graduates and now own their own homes, and the youngest is in college in NC; wife to Thomas; Work - one full time and multiple part time jobs; Life - whatever you can throw at me....

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Thanksgiving Candids

 My nieces and nephew.

 Three Granddaughters and one step granddaughter with their Mema (my MIL).

My brothers, and sisters and mom and myself.
My three being silly!

I wish I took more pictures.  I just forgot. 
And a Very Happy Birthday to my sister today!  She got her favorite treats from me....Mallo Cups.  They aren't sold around here any more so I order them special for her every year!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

The end of the hens....for this year!

Today was the day!

The chickens have been molting for well over a month.  Even though we have had some of the most beautiful November weather on record, I was getting maybe one egg a day.  The hens are almost two years old and it was time to say goodbye.  I will be getting either four or six new pullets in March next year.

My brother-in-law Joe came over to do the deed.....He and hubby did the killing and Joe and I did the plucking and cleaning, etc.

For those of you who do not want to see this process, please proceed with caution.  The pictures aren't grisly but they are a true representation...

First off, Joe cut off their heads and let them bleed out.   You can't really see much above.
Next,  Joe started plucking feathers.......

I channeled my dad.  I asked him for strength and all of a sudden, I started plucking the second one!  This one was the Silver Wyandotte and was my dad's favorite!

Here is one almost all done....

Joe is scraping the last of the feathers.  The big pot held the boiling water, which we dipped them into to help get rid of the hardest feather quills.  

I offered Joe one of the soup chickens.  He told me my sister would not want that in the house.....I need to have a discussion with my sister!

So, I froze two chickens for another time and two went into the pot for soup.  

I think tomorrow, it will be chicken with rice soup for dinner.....

Saturday, November 26, 2011

The Turkey

I got my turkey from Stone Gardens Farm again this year.  I asked Stacia for a 25 lb. turkey.  My sister was also making another turkey for our evening meal (or leftovers for everyone to take home).

When I got to Stone Gardens, Stacia said Maria, I had to give you a bigger turkey this year.  There were so many that were 30 lbs., so I upped your bird - I hope you don't mind.

Well, I got a 31 lb. turkey.  It was huge and heavy!

I should have taken some before and after pictures.  But here are the after pictures....I placed organic bacon on mine to give it more flavor!!!

The cover would not fit on my pan.  I had to use foil to cover the whole thing.  The bird was just too big!    It cooked for 10 hours and then I shut off the oven and it sat there for another two hours.  It was moist and delicious and it took both myself and my son to get it out of the pan.  It sort of fell apart though.  It was so perfectly cooked!  Next time, I'll need a rack to be able to get it out of the pan....on second thought, next time I'll ask for a 20 lb. bird and maybe get a 25 lb. turkey....so it will fit perfectly!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

Where ever you are, I wish you the happiest of Thanksgivings...

Please eat a lot!!!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Getting ready

Last night, we had our annual 'getting ready' for Thanksgiving get together.  We (the entire family) got together to make the ravioli for Thanksgiving day.  It was a great night!  Approximately 400 ravioli made for tomorrow's dinner.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Merry Christmas from Heaven

About three weeks ago, I had received an e-mail from the Catholic Company, an online company selling Catholic/religious articles for confirmations, communions, Christmas, etc........I have purchased from them on occasion.  The email was a poem entitled "Merry Christmas from Heaven"

The tears just started flowing and I hadn't even read the poem yet.......

Last night at Zumba, one of my wonderful friends who has been with our Zumba class for almost two years, gave me a gift.  She didn't think I should open it right then and there and in my heart, I knew what it was because she has been so good to me during this time after my dad's death.

It was the Merry Christmas From Heaven poem and the Christmas Ornament.


I still hear the songs,
I still see the lights
I still feel your love on cold wintry nights

I still share your hopes and all of your cares
I'll even remind you to please say your prayers

I just want to tell you, you still make me proud
You stand head and shoulders above all the crowd

Keep trying each moment, to stay in His Grace
I came here before you to help set your place

You don't have to be perfect all of the time
He Forgives you the slip, if you continue the climb

To my family and friends,
Please be thankful today
I'm still close beside you,
In a new special way

I love you all dearly,
Now don't shed a tear
cause I'm spending my
Christmas with Jesus this year

Copyright 1989 John Wm. Mooney, Jr.

Thank you, Jenn, from the bottom of my heart.  I love it, and I can't stop crying.   Thank God I didn't open it last night.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Schedules - like mother, like daughter

Do any of you recognize the similarities between my daughter and me????

This is what I just received from her:

Schedule for this week..
Monday: Nothing after school, zumba, cheerleading 7-9
Tuesday: Cheerleading @ Spirit 2:30 to 5, cheerleading at city hall 5-7
Wednesday: School till 12, cheerleading 12:30 to 1:30, work 2 till whenever we finish the orders for thanksgiving
Thursday: Game @ 10:30, I have to be there @ 9
Friday: Work sometime.. I think I have to be in at 8 .. then maybe cheerleading at city hall
Saturday: I'M A FREE WOMAN!!
Sunday: Work 9:30 to 2:30
Monday: No school! Work I think 3 to 7 but I'm not sure yet!

I need to break her of the craziness - heck, I didn't get like this until I was in my early 20's.......

Sunday, November 20, 2011

A productive day

The day started out with a great run - the weather was mild - extremely mild - just crazy mild - it is November 20th, people!! 65 degrees today!

Then I had to teach a CCD class. I was the substitute teacher for my sister-in-law's class.  I had given up my own fourth grade CCD class this year.  It was the first year that I didn't teach a CCD class since my oldest was in 4th grade.  That was 14 years ago.    And I realized how much I missed it.  I also realized how much teaching means to me....how teaching our children about Jesus and our faith is just so important....so important!  I will revisit this decision next year.

Then off to Mass!

Then I needed to clean the chicken coop - one of those chores that you put off as long as you can, until you know better!!! :)

So, as I was off to the shed to get fresh bedding for my ladies, I looked at the raspberry bush - and lo and behold, what do I see.....freaking raspberries...Did you remember that it is November 20th people??  And I live in CT!

I picked 16 raspberries!  They will be in my smoothy tomorrow morning!  (It's November 20th!!!)

Then off to my girlfriend Joanie's Fiftieth Birthday Party!  Joanie is one of the friends from a post a few weeks' back.  She and I have been friends since I was in 2nd grade and she was in 4th grade.  It doesn't get much better than that!  All the group friends were there (except Eva - we missed you and Happy Birthday to you too!).  I got to see others that I hadn't seen in over 20 years!  Good times!

Then off to a parent meeting for the Florida trip.  I stayed for an hour and never even got to talk to the person that I wanted to.  There was such a line and a lot going on.

Then home to work on some of my bookkeeping accounts.

Then a glass of wine!
Then Amazing Race!

Yes, an extremely productive day!!!

Saturday, November 19, 2011


The team my daughter helps to coach came in first place today in the New England Region beating out seven other teams - Florida here we come.......

Congrats Pee Wee Cheer (medium, intermediate).

Friday, November 18, 2011

CSA - Fall Week #3

Fall Share:
3 winter squash - two butternut, one acorn
1 brussel sprout stalk
2 lbs of potatoes
1 lb sweet potatoes - did not get these!
1 bunch of radishes
2 kohlrabi
1 bunch of turnip greens
1 bag of mixed cooking greens = ( kale, baby brussel sprout leaves)
1/2 dozen gourds for holiday decorations

I'm not sure why we didn't get the sweet potatoes, but we got everything else.  

Thursday, November 17, 2011


I know I haven't been blogging much and I think it's just because I have a lot on my plate again. Again!

I'm trying hard to prioritize and blogging always seems to take a back seat to everything else I have to do.  What I want to do is stay home and cook and bake and probably clean a little too!  This entire week and weekend is already booked...and I'm tired.

I am running in a race next week and my training hasn't been good.  I'll have to really get myself motivated to run this last week before the race!

Friday, I pick up my CSA, so I'll post what I'm getting.  I know I'm getting gourds for decorations!

Saturday is the last competition before we find out if my daughter's team (cheerleaders) that she coaches, goes to Florida.   We will see what happens....Saturday will be interesting.  My daughter is also a sponsor for a friend for Confirmation and that is Saturday too!

My good friend's 50th birthday party is this Sunday, though....Something really fun to look forward to!
Happy Birthday Joanie!

So hopefully, once next week is over, I can start blogging some good recipes and some good stuff...Maybe I'll be talking about a trip to Florida?

Monday, November 14, 2011

I've been flocked.....

Yes, it has happened again! I've been flocked.....by a bunch of pink flamingos!

I LOVE it!  They really decorate the mailbox area quite nicely - I wish there were more of them!

Read about my last flocking here......and yes, I have flocked someone else!!!

 This guy below has a Christmas Hat on!  One of them has a bow tie.....

Friday, November 11, 2011

CSA - Fall Week #2

Fall Share:
1 butternut squash
1 other type of winter squash
1 brussel sprout stalk
2 lbs of potatoes
1 head of lettuce or bag of leaf lettuce/asian mix
1 bunch of radishes or salad turnips
1 lb of beets
1 bag of mixed cooking greens = (either kale, baby brussel sprout leaves, & collards or swiss chard & turnips)
 I'm hoping for another spaghetti squash and the swiss chard and turnip mixture of greens 

Last week, I ended up with two heads of cauliflower and two heads of lettuce.  Everything is now officially used up from last week as of this morning, with the last of the kale in my green smoothie (which is pink again because I add too many raspberries!) :)

I also received an extra small pumpkin last week which I have on the table with the other gourds as decorations until I have time to cook them!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Good Morning

I took these pictures early in the morning when I was opening the coop for the day (about two weeks ago), the day before the big snowstorm.   I love the sunrise!

I forgot they were on my camera.....

Tuesday, November 8, 2011



(I didn't want to make it look like I was yelling at you, but I think it's important.)

Have a beautiful day!!


Monday, November 7, 2011

Busy Weekend

I had a wedding in Rhode Island, a cheerleading competition in Massachusetts, I worked two part time jobs and went to two masses this weekend .....and I missed out on a 50th birthday party that I wanted to attend - just not enough time.  Saturday and Sunday just keep getting busier!

Maybe next week, I can clean.....maybe not! 

I made homemade cole slaw too.....it isn't ready yet, but I tried it last night - It's good, but I think it's going to get better, once it sets for a little while longer.......

And no internet service at the house, we aren't sure why, though!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Freebies this month!

1 dozen eggs from Target (The local Target just opened a grocery store inside)
12 oz. of Montana Coffee Traders  coffee
Head and Shoulders Shampoo and Conditioner sample
From Target - a small cosmetic bag, filled with:
    Ponds Wet Cleansing Towelettes
    TRESemme Shampoo and Conditioner Samples
    Garnier Fructis Shampoo and Conditioner Samples
    John Frieda Shampoo and Conditioner Sample
    L'oreal Youth Code Day/Night Cream
    Burt's Bees Radiance SPF 15  Day Lotion
L'oreal Ever Sleek Shampoo  and Conditioner
L'oreal Leave-in Creme
Jergens Ultra Healing Moisturizing Lotion
Biore Blemish fighting cleanser
Olay ProXClear for acne
Lined Post-it notes
Kraft Mac & Cheese (Target Freebie)
5 Hour Energy Drink

Friday, November 4, 2011

Fall CSA, Week 1

Fall Share:

1 butternut squash

1 kabocha or acorn squash

1 brussel sprout stalk

1 kale top

1 head of lettuce

1 head of cabbage

1 head of cauliflower

4 sweet peppers

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Molting Hens

My ladies have been molting for about 1-1/2 months.  Egg production had taken a serious nose dive.  I was lucky to get one egg a day.  Sometimes NONE!  (but on a good day, I would get two.)

However, yesterday, I got three eggs!  I'm not sure if it was the beautiful sunshine all day, or the warmer temperatures after the snow filled weekend, but the ladies look like their feathers are growing back and have started to produce again.  I hope they can keep it up for a while longer! 

Come spring, a new generation of chicks will be heading towards a certain back yard in Derby......The lovely ladies that I have now will then be two years old and depending on their output, they may be headed for soup!  Ah, the circle of life! 

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


Last week, Eva came home for an overnight visit to her Mom's, (Eva lives in Saratoga and sold me this house) so some of the girls got together.  Actually all of our "group" friends (except Christine)  made it out for dinner and/or drinks.  I had a meeting at the school, so I came a little later for the "drinks".   "Group" stands for Mental Health Group...we would get together every week (twenty-something years ago) and have our kids play together.  All of us were young, married and didn't have a clue what we were doing with kids and mortgages and/or apartments and marriage.  We clung to each other for dear life and support and we all did pretty well in the "children" dept.!!!!!

These are my dearest friends, whom I have known for many, many years.  I have been blessed with different groups of friends who have always been there for me through thick and thin....God knew I would always need the "girls" and He delivered.
 The picture above is Donna, Joannie and Andrea.  Donna is married to my first boyfriend (when I was in grammar school - HA!)  She is also Joannie's sister-in-law.  Joannie and I have been friends since I moved across the street from her when I was in second grade (40 years)!!  Andrea is my sister - I guess I've known her forever!!!
 This picture shows Theresa, Eva and Cindy.  Theresa is my youngest friend!  She and I have only known each other 22 years.  I met her through Eva when she came to our "group".   We all have a 22 year old!!!  Eva is my oldest friend.  Our parents have been friends forever, so her and I have known each other since I was four and she was five - that's how we roll in the Valley...friends for ever.  Cindy and I met in freshman year of high school (34 years ago).  She is my BFF and also my sixth cousin.  Yep, that's how we roll...

This the "group" without Christine!  She had to work that night...