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Sunday, October 30, 2011

Better late than never...

And since I had a last minute "Friday" event come up, followed by a Saturday watching my very busy 9 month old niece, my "special" winner is...well, both of you ladies (Liberty and Priscilla) since there were only 2 comments, I will just hook you both up with a little something extra from the Paisley Pumpkin.

Thank you for visiting my blog :-) Your goodies will be on the way tomorrow and I hope you enjoy them!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Burt's Bees

If you've  left me a comment for the Burt's Bees samples, email me your address so I can drop your things in the mail!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Goodies to give away!

Y'all know i'm a member of - once in awhile I throw a giveaway up here when they send me something good that I want to share. Today is your lucky day because *I* got a box in the mail. It was a small box, but it's got great stuff in it! Ready for it?

Burt's Bees! 
Yep - told you it was good stuff! 

This is a product line for sensitive my little box I got a full size tube of facial cleanser and a full size daily moisturizing cream. That's not all, I also got coupons and sample packs of the fantastic moisturizing cream with cotton extract. It's 99.0% natural, fragrance free, hypo-allergenic, Allergy-testes and dermatologist-tested. It has no parabens, phthalates, or petrochemicals and it's not tested on our little furry friends. How great is that?

Look at all that BEEutiful stuff!  I can't give away the full size products because I have to use them and report back, but I can and will give away the samples and coupons!  The first 5 folks to leave me a comment will get a sample (there's also a coupon on the back). Friday 10/28/11 we'll generate a "special" winner from everyone who leaves a comment.

About that cleanser - I love it. I was just about out of my regular cleanser when this box showed up. After realizing I had to remove the foil seal (duh) we were in business. This is a non-greasy, non-foaming, non-soapy, creamy cleanser. There's no scent to irritate my eyes (i'm currently having some scent related allergy issues) and my skin feels soft and smooth after washing and patting dry. It's not tight, no tingling, no redness - it's just fresh and clean. A little bit goes a long way - so I expect this trial tube will last me at least until the end of November. That's some bang for your buck right there. 

About that moisturizer. I like it, but i'm not sure I love it. It leaves my skin feeling nice, but almost sticky, almost greasy. It's better after it's had a little time to soak in. It may just be me, i'm not big on facial moisturizers. I will, of course, continue to use it and see how I adjust to it. I might love it more this winter in Tennessee...

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Wow what a day!

Today my friends Rebekah (yes friendS - two of them, both Rebekah with a "K") and I hit the streets of Central Florida for some yard sales, thrift stores and Habitat ReStore. 

This whole day was based on a Facebook post. You see, I "like" the Seminole County ReStore. Mostly because they always post photos of the stuff they get in (unlike the other locations around here). So I happened to check Facebook when I was at lunch yesterday and there it was. Most awesome table EVER. I immediately texted it to Rebekah #2 because she and I just "get" each other with upcycling. Text was "OMG - WANT! Seminole ReStore" and her response was "OMG buy it! If you don't I will!" Done. This was mid afternoon Friday. ReStore is only open until 6. So we made plans to go yard sale shopping today. Which turned into girls day doing a little of everything. 

So - here's what started the whole day. I'm going to refinish it - and this is not the most stellar photo, so you'll have to live with it for now. I have to go pick it up Monday because - well, the SUV was FULL by the time we got there. Chairs, headboards, iron scroll work, we got good stuff today. More on that later.

 OMG can you totally dig this thing?! It's a coffee table - the "knot" on top really just holds the glass on top.  It just sits there with a little 1/2" or so peg thru the glass and into the table.
It's solid wood and...AND...A.N.D. the whole top turns. It's like a giant lazy susan!  When I first saw it, I immediately thought "Ballard" "Pottery Barn" - it's like a giant gear. 

$45 + tax - mine mine mine! It's not as huge as it looks. Cannot wait to refinish it! I have a couple of thoughts, but i'd love to hear your suggestions. 

ETA - after a little Googling... I found the same table (for real...) that sold (price not listed - boooo) on a site I have seen before. CRAZY Expensive.

Sultana - For Sale and  Sultana - SOLD

I've also found out (I love Google...I mean seriously) that it's vintage 1970 and it's from Ethan Allen. 
Popular Table - and lots of people really want to get their hands on one! 

$200 for sale in Maryland.

$380 in Houston comes with a matching lamp/table. I have a friend who just moved to Clear Lake...where these are located. Probably not her style though. 

Apartment Therapy - in a cool blue finish - blue doesn't work for me either, but I like it. I'm beginning to think I might ditch the glass top.

Throwing my find in for Nifty Thrifty Tuesday over at Coastal Charm it's been awhile since I had a minute to join in the party!

Wallet-Friendly Wednesday


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

No bueno!

Yesterday afternoon my husband called me at work to tell my a message was left for me on his cell phone voice mail. Color me confused. 

Turns out it was the fraud department for our credit union. Three guesses what i'm about to say...first two don't count.

Yep, someone got my debit card number and went to town. 

  • Entertainment Weekly subscription
  • Netflix
  • several online gaming sites
  • etc, etc, etc...
Luckily, they thought it looked weird. #1 because there were like 50 transactions in a matter of minutes and #2 I rarely use my debit card. And by rarely, I mean like once a week...maybe.

Generally Mr. Paisley stops by the bank and takes out cash for each of us for the week. We used to have a $100 each "allowance" for the week, but recently, we dropped it to $80 after crunching some numbers and deciding that paying off the TN mortgage (principle) at $1000 a year wasn't cool. So beefing up that payment and curbing our more or less wasteful spending. The fact that I have cash, is why my debit card is collecting dust. We pay for Sunday breakfast, gas at BJs and whatever store purchases we make at BJs with Mr. P's card usually. Why I don't know...I think he just likes to play with the card reader. This week, I did pay for groceries with my card (on Sunday...after going to BJs). Frankly, I can't tell you the last time I was in Publix, but I couldn't find ANYTHING in there. What a pain! Maybe I should grocery shop more often...that's not the point though so i'll move on.

I also NEVER use my debit card when I shop online. Sure it has a Visa logo on it and does indeed act as a credit card, but call me old fashioned, i'm a little paranoid about using it online when it's connected to my checking account. Oh and I do indeed have the card in my possession so no one "took" it.

So the card was inactivated and today I got copies of my credit reports from the big three. Nothing suspicious, but I put fraud alerts on them just in case. I have no plans to open any credit card accounts any time soon, so no skin off my back and better safe than sorry.

So - word to the wise...keep an eye on your accounts! Even if there are fraud units doing it for you. 

Here's a link to the government's identity theft site...because you never know. 

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Nutella Frosting....yum!

Continuing on my "cooking" trend with the cooler weather, I whipped up a cake to take to work. Nothing fancy I assure you...

  • 1 box of yellow cake mix
  • 1 can of diet ginger ale
Yep, that's it. I go all Weight Watchers on cake. Partly because i'm lazy (i've mentioned that right?) partly for the calorie savings. It's fast, it's easy, you can lick the beaters without fear of dying because of raw eggs...oh and it results in a yummy, moist cake. What's not to like?

Dump the mix into a bowl, add the ginger ale (or your lemon-lime soda of choice, you won't really taste it anyway) - add it a little at a time as it will foam up. Mix it up! 

Grease your pan(s), pour the batter in, bake according to the box.

While the cake was baking, I whipped up this Nutella Frosting that I found a recipe for on Tartelette

Nutella Cream Cheese Frosting:
8 oz cream cheese at room temperature
2 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature
1/4 cup powdered sugar
2 oz Nutella

In the bowl of an electric mixer, whisk together the cream cheese and butter until smooth. Sift the powdered sugar over the bowl and whisk for a few seconds. Add the Nutella and mix until completely incorporated. 

Turns out that the day I took it to work it was "Do Something Nice Day" - it was almost like I planned it. 
 I even used that 500 pound fancy schmancy Kitchenaid Mixer to make the frosting.

Mmmm - yummmmm

Monday, October 10, 2011

More fall cookin' at the Cottage and Pinterest #4

It's still in the mid to upper 80s here in Florida, welcome to "fall". At least it's breezy so it FEELS cooler than it is. 

This time I whipped up another pin from Pinterest. Cheesy Corn Casserole. Recipe from

Serves 12

4 slices bacon, finely chopped
6 tbsp. unsalted butter, cubed
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
½ cup flour
3 cups milk
4 oz. cream cheese, cubed
2 oz. Velveeta, cubed
2 cups grated extra-sharp cheddar cheese
1 tsp. paprika
3 lb. fresh or frozen corn kernels
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Heat oven to 375°. Heat bacon in a 6-qt. saucepan over medium heat, and cook, stirring, until browned, about 8 minutes. Add butter and garlic, and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add flour, and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Whisk in milk, and bring to a boil; cook, stirring constantly, until thickened, about 2 minutes. Add cream cheese, Velveeta, cheddar, and paprika, and cook until smooth. Remove from heat and stir in corn; season with salt and pepper. Transfer mixture to a 9″ × 13″ baking dish and bake until top is golden brown and bubbling, about 40 minutes. Let cool before serving.
 I should have used a bigger dish...
Holy Southern heart attack in a dish. The only healthy part of this dish, was me using skim milk! Let me tell you, this is pretty good, but needs some tweaking. Being my first try at this one, I followed the recipe. Dear God, 12 servings...and there's just two of us. I will be dropping some of this off at my brother's house on my way to work in the morning. Speaking of my brother, little Georgia is 8 months old now (time flies...), cute as a button and she's sick :-( First illness of any kind and straight to the hospital. Well, not straight, they took her to their pediatrician (they have Sunday hours!) and were then sent to the hospital. Poor little pumpkin...
Here she is with daddy at the beach. She's got a couple of teeth and she started crawling last week. Into everything of course. She's a super happy little girl. We all love her to bits. Auntie Robin can't get enough of her :-)


Sunday, October 9, 2011

Minor Cottage Updates

After the usual breakfast at IHOP this morning, we did the usual boring routine of going to BJ's - only we took a detour to Home Depot first. It's kinda in the same plaza. I wanted to pick up a towel ring for the master bathroom. We have the Glacier Bay Innburg toilet paper holder, so of course something matching would be nice. Luckily, they still have that line in stock. 
Simple. Basic. Probably more contemporary / modern than me, but I wanted plain and this is what I chose. Brushed nickle of course. Looking at the companion pieces online I decided I disliked the actual towel ring.
I just don't like the curve. So being the plan ahead kinda gal that I am, I ran to the bathroom, removed the roll of TP and hung a hand towel on the TP holder. Perfect...well, a little low, ok, a lot low...and on the wrong wall. Point being I was just going to get another TP holder and put it on the wall by the sink. Then I actually got to the store and decided my sink space was crowded enough, I didn't need another thing there making it visually crowded. So I just grabbed the matching robe hook. 
It was also half the price of the towel ring...which was $1 more than the TP holder. 
Of course now I have to get Mr. P to put it up...

On a semi related note, it has rained here pretty much non-stop since before dawn on Friday. All day Friday. All day Saturday. ALL DAY. Then it was raining this morning. It would drizzle, then pour. Then drizzle, then mist...the pour. Lather, rinse, repeat. Luckily we were in a misting period when we walked out of IHOP. I did use my umbrella though. On the way to BJs (and Home Depot) it stopped. Not only did it stop, but I started to see a few patches of blue sky. Then the sun came out - a little. It was still really cloudy and windy. Gusting up to 22mph according to the local all the time news channel. One lucky iguana got to go lay outside in the sun for a little while. It was short lived...after a few hours it starting raining again...right as Mr. Paisley had gotten up on the roof to clean out the gutters. Fall Cleaning at the Cottage! Luckily, it was only one downpour and it's just been cloudy and windy ever since. It was like 87 and HUMID as all get out thanks to that little bit of sun after all that rain...but with the higher winds it's still cool enough to have the house opened up. So...I gave Mr. Paisley a list. He's cleaned the screens on the front of the house. I cleaned the windows. He hung up the last two sets of wood blinds (for my office) that have been sitting in the corner by the front door since...oh...right, the Memorial Day party (yes...that was in May...practically June)...then I had him rehang the mirror over the 2x2 Expedit in the living room.   
Entry way / message center. While I was cleaning out the guest room for a yard sale, I found the wire magazine basket. Yep, forgot I ordered that. A LOOOOONG time ago. It's now a designated spot to deposit the mail.  The pumpkin board above it is a chalk board / magnet board (the smaller pumpkins in the corners are magnets). Fabulous. Now the only things on top of the Expedit are a pot of wheat, a stack of mini jars (which you can't see from this angle) and the soapstone dish that my boss brought me from her last trip to Egypt. I put my keys in it so as not to leave scratches.  I also added a twiggy pumpkin since it's fall. $2.50 in the Dollar Spot at Target. 

Thursday, October 6, 2011

It could be worse...

Let's face it, it can almost always be worse. Whatever "it" is, there are worse things. Mr. Paisley made BBQ ham steaks, green beans and wild rice for dinner. I ate it. It was good. My stomach is growling an hour later. I ate a full meal. I'm fortunate enough to be able to get my butt out of my office chair and go get something else to eat from the kitchen. Leftover crock pot Italian chicken. A salad. A piece of cheese. A Klondike bar. Is taking things for granted the same as just not thinking about the fact that not everyone has the options I do? 

I have a job. In fact I have too much work. There is certainly enough work to support a third person in my department, it's just not in the budget. Thus, i'm woefully behind. 

It could be worse.

One of my co-workers was laid off...or fired. I'm not sure which - last week. 

I'm annoyed that when my car came back from the body shop that they didn't buff out the minor scratches, nor fill the paint chips that I asked about when I dropped it off. 

It could be worse.

This morning traffic was tied up for hours on East Highway 50 - there was a car pinned under a flatbed semi trailer. (from what i've read online, both passengers in the car were taken to area hospitals, no mention of fatalities - hopefully they will recover - as for the car - pretty sure that can't be "buffed out")

Not long ago, a friend of mine posted a status update on Facebook that said -

"I watch people I love post negative after negative thoughts focusing on the bad in their lives....I'm living proof that if you focus on what you do have that is good you will see more good and then the good just starts to over flow...God is good it's up to you to see what you have!"

I'm pretty sure that was indirectly (or not) directed at several status updates that I had posted complaining about: the truck breaking down, spending more money to get it fixed (again), the non-stop rain on my vacation, which lead up to the roof on my vacation house leaking. Yea, I was having a moment...or 12. I guess I should be looking at the fact that since my truck broke down (again) that I *HAVE* a truck. And that since my roof was leaking that I *HAVE* a roof over my head...granted it's raining in my living room. Sorry if I find it a little difficult to focus on the "good" of both situations.

It could be worse. 

This whole post is because of a photo I saw pinned on Pinterest (I know...)
It comes from Freckles & Ivory

 Humble yourself. Indeed. 

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Pinterest #3 - Mississippi Sin

We finally got a touch of cooler weather (meaning less than 90 degrees) which makes me want to cook. I've been trying to do more of things I pin on Pinterest and this is #3. I whipped this up on Sunday afternoon.

Mississippi Sin

16oz sour cream
8oz cream cheese, softened
2 cup cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 cup chopped ham
1 green onion, chopped
1/4 tsp hot sauce
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
French bread loaf

In a mixing bowl, combine all ingredients, except French bread; stirring until well blended.

Cut a thin slice from top of bread loaf; set slice aside. Using a gentle sawing motion, cut vertically to, but not through, bottom of the loaf, 1/2 inch from the edge, to cut out center of bread. Lift out center of loaf. Fill hollowed bread loaf with the dip. Wrap loaf with foil.

Bake dip at 350° degrees for 1 hour. Serve with reserved bread cubes, crackers, or potato chips.

Recipe compliments of Steph at  Plain Chicken check out her other goodies!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

No Poo Update - i'm out.

Uncle. I give up. White flag. Stick a fork in me. 

Yep. I'm over the no-poo thing. I can't seem to get the right ratio (I guess) for my hair and I cannot deal with how LONG it takes to dry. Oh. My. God. 

Yes, my hair is thick. Yes, my hair is long. Guess what, I can blow dry it in 30 minutes when I use regular old drug store shampoo and conditioner. It won't be dry in an HOUR when I use baking soda, water and vinegar. Sorry, can't deal. 

I tried. I wanted to love it. I thought I loved it. I was wrong.

On the plus fridge and freezers will all smell nice and fresh since i'm well stocked on Arm & Hammer.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Pinterest Inspiration #2

I said I was going to start DOING more of what I pin on Pinterest and I am!  Pinterest Inspiration #1 was not super interesting...nor was it any real work as I had already taken the photo before I pinned the one on Pinterest. Hey - I gotta start somewhere right?

Pinterest #2 is slightly more interesting and actually required a minor bit of effort on my part.

Mason Jar Wreath pinned from the "member junk" section of Junk Market Style 

I pinned this and two days later I stopped at one of my old Goodwill haunts (sadly, I don't get there much any more as it's near my old office...which is no where near my new office). What did I find? Are you serious? Too easy. 

A whole zip top bag full of mason jar lid rings. Mine for $1.99 + tax

Now these are not pretty, rusty, patina bearing, zinc pieces like the lovely one from Junk Market Style, BUT beggars can't be choosers. I'm pretty sure i'd never find enough vintage ones for a reasonable amount of money, nor in a reasonable amount of time. 

In the name of saving time (and deciding how to make them look more vintage), I went ahead and whipped up my wreath. It's not like it's hard to change...they're tied together with a piece of string. LOL

I added a fall bow since it's that time of year...

They are tied together with plain old kitchen string - for now. Evidently I left my twine at the cabin and i'm not running out to get some right now.

It's not staying where I hung it for the picture - i'm in the process of changing the mirror over my entry console again and since the hook was in the wall, I saw a photo op. ;-) I'm sure you will see it turn up elsewhere in a new photo, maybe even with a new finish.

By the way - the finished wreath is about 8" across (outside edges) and it is made up of 40 lid rings. FORTY! Canning isn't big here in Central Florida - maybe those of you up north and in the midwest (where I picture the canning parts of the US to be located) can pick up pretty old ones for a song.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

It feels like Fall! feels like it's not 100 degrees outside. According to my fancy schmancy thermostat it's 79 degrees out there. I would guess it's a little warmer than that, BUT it's GORGEOUS! Blue skies, steady breeze and it's definitely 70something in the shade!

Cooler temps make me want to cook. Who knew anything would really cause me to WANT to cook. I don't want to over do it or anything, so tonight we are having the infamous Crock pot Italian Chicken. Yeah, crock pot - i'm not really sure dumping stuff in a pot and plugging it in qualifies as cooking...but at least I was motivated enough to start thinking about making dinner before 7pm. It's a good thing right? Like I said..don't want to over do it for the first day that actually FEELS somewhat fall-like here in the Sunshine State.

It's quick and easy - here we go!

If you're lazy (like me), put one of those liner bags in your crock. Why do dishes if you don't have to? Now dig out the following...

  1. 8 ounce brick of cream cheese (you can use the 1/3 fat or the fat free kind if you want)
  2. 1 packet of Good Season's Italian Dressing mix (the dry stuff)
  3. 1 can of condensed cream of something or other soup (the recipe calls for cream of chicken, I use whatever I have on hand - tonight, it's cream of mushroom)
  4. 2 - 4 chicken breasts
Let the cream cheese soften up a bit, mix it with the soup and the Italian dressing mix. You can do this in the crock or in a bowl - we don't really care :-) If you're a food safety Nazi, make sure your chicken is thawed or fresh. If you're lazy (like me) and like to live on the edge (haven't gotten sick yet) just throw the frozen chicken in the crock. Either way, spoon the cream cheese mixture on top. Cover it, and cook it. Low all day, high for 4 hours. Obviously you'll want to make sure your chicken is cooked. When you go the lazy route (frozen chicken) I tend to check on the chicken after a couple of hours and cut it up. Smaller pieces to cook - if you cook it all day, you can shred it (pull it) before you serve it. Yummo!

When the chicken is done, cook up some rice or egg noodles, plate up your choice and top with the yummy, creamy, Italian chicken concoction.

If'n you want to get all fancy for guests, you can add mushrooms and maybe add a little roasted asparagus on the side.