Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Photo of the Day - Howlin' at the Moon

1.15.12 - Photo of the Day 

The dog house Bubba has been working on out in the, it's not for him, one of his parents' beagles is pregnant and needs to upgrade her home :)

Photo of the Day - Valentine's Day!

2.14.12 - Photo of the Day

My beautiful Valentine's Day flowers from my loving husband, Bubba!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Photo of the Day - Hello Flash

2.13.12 - Photo of the Day

Typically I HATE using the flash on my camera, as it blows everything out, but for some reason I really liked the effect it created in this picture. It draws my eye to the dark sky in the background rather than the old fence and vines in the foreground.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Uh Oh - Forgotten Photos of the Day

2.9.12 - Photo of the Day

 I had to duck out of work early on Thursday to pay the Advanced Orthopedic Specialists a visit. Good news? My elbow bones are healthy. The bad news? My elbow muscles and tendons are not. Nothing that cannot be fixed though!

2.10.12 - Photo of the Day

Friday I went to cheer on my cousin, Myles, as he and the Great Mills freshman team went up against Leonardtown. LHS barely nudged by them late in the 4th.

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The most beautiful baby girl I know.

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We got the tiniest bit of snow Saturday's about time it started to feel like winter!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Photo of the Day - Soup for You!

2.8.12 - Photo of the Day

Nothing like a steaming hot pot of homemade soup on this dreary, cold day.

*1 can 98% fat free Creamy Chicken Noodle
*1 can 98% fat free Cream of Chicken
*4oz  boiled egg noddles
*2 biscuits, pulled apart and rolled into small dumplings
*1 empty soup can skim milk
*1/2 empty soup can water
*4 pulled, grilled chicken tenders left over from last nights dinner
*Cook on stove top uncovered for 15 minutes on medium/high, then cover pot for 20 more minutes of cooking. Stir occasionally. 

Super rich, but super yummy! (PS- I never claimed it would be healthy...)

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Monday, February 6, 2012

Photo(s) of the Day

2.5.12 - Photo of the Day

Authentic, autographed picture of Hanson, found at the Lexington Park Thrift Shop.

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The beginnings of my next project...

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Photo(s) of the Day - Ducks and Muskrats

2.3.12 - Photo of the Day

Meet Affie, the newest resident of Milestown Oak Lane. She (or he, I'm not really sure) likes to hang out on the pond at my parents house. Affie is very tame and most likely lost, but everyone has taken to her and enjoys bringing her bits or bread or corn.

2.4.12 - Photo of the Day

Now I'd like you to meet the Bushwood Muskrats! (From Left to Right) Adam Link, Marci Morris, Dan Simpson, Mindy Hill, Boyd Shoemaker, Adam Lyon, Bubba Hill and Adrian Hill, Sr.

A local store and bar in the 7th, Quade's, holds trivia once a month and last night we made an appearance and actually took home the gold! Ok, well we took home 4 shirts, two line green hats straight from the '80s and several beer koozies, but it still felt great to win. Way to go, Muskrats!

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Photo of the Day - A Transitioning Sky

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The evening sky over St. Clement's Island never ceases to amaze me.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Photo of the Day - Bumps in the Road

I stopped to take this photo while I was walking around the neighborhood this afternoon.  It made me think about all of this hardships going on not only in my life, but in the world as well.  No matter what kind of bumps in the road we encounter, they only make us stronger. :)

2.1.12 - Photo of the Day

Bumps in the Road.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

2012 Resolution Follow Up

It has only been 31 days, and I can't remember what I pledged for the new year, other than (obviously) to get in some sort of shape.  So, I've decided to look back at my blogpost from New Years Eve, and give a little status update as to where I stand with each one.  In fact, I'd like to check back in at the end of each month and report on how I'm doing. Here we go:

1. Photo of the Day challenge - I'm shockingly doing pretty well with this one. Ok, so my pictures haven't been quite as visually stimulating as I'd hope they'd be, but I'm going to work on that.  Once the temperatures start warming up, that might help as well.  At least I've managed to get 31 Photos of the Day posted in the month of January, right?

2. Reacquire my physical fitness - Am I back in tip-top shape? No, BUT the hubs and I have both agreed on a healthier lifestyle for the new year, and I can certainly see a difference.  I've exchanged sweet tea and soda for water, white breads and pasta's for whole wheat (as often as I can), and limiting the amount of sweets I have throughout the week. Though I haven't gotten on the scale, I do know for a fact that I have decreased my amount of bloat.  All of my pants that I tried my hardest to avoid because they were uncomfortably snug, are now back in my weekly line up.  Are they loose? No, but they are so much more comfortable than they were before. Another successful change we've made is eating out. Lunches are now packed (the majority of the time) and we only go out for dinner on the weekends.

3. Rediscover my passion for fashion - I love a good dress, but I HATE pantyhose.  Just saying the word makes me cringe.  So any ideal improvements to my wardrobe are waiting for warmer weather.  However, for the time being I have made a concentrated effort to improve my look. I've been doing my hair more often and even taking the time in the mornings to pick out something different that I feel happy in. (*This is an ongoing effort and even though I'm trying, I am well aware that there are some days when I just haven't put the effort in.)

4. Don't Worry, Be Happy - This is probably the hardest of all my resolutions. I'm a born "people pleaser" and the word "No" doesn't always find its way into my vocabulary.  Thus leading to some stressful and frustrating situations, which means an unhappy Mindle.  But I have come up with a few remedies for this; I've been making more time for my own hobbies like reading, blogging, photography and home decor projects. Now if only I could squeeze some traveling in there...

Photo of the Day - Calm

1.31.12 - Photo of the Day

The end of the Point, on a calm evening. Can you see the Blue Heron?

Monday, January 30, 2012

Pinterest Taste Test - Chocolate Chip Cookies

Over the weekend I was craving something sweet, and since we are trying really hard to eat healthier in 2012 there was nothing sweet in sight. And I mean nothing. And then it hit me, I had bought a bunch of baking supplies over Christmas and still had some left.  So what did I do? I rushed over to Pinterest and found the simplest looking recipe I could find for Chocolate Chip cookies. (Yes, I'm that pathetic of a cook/baker that I don't even know how to make cookies from scratch.) Anyway, I found a pin for "Big Chocolate Chip Cookies" from and got to work.

When you have to work really hard for your sweets, that cuts out 50% of the calories, right? Right....

The Verdict? Pretty good.  Never in my life did I imagine the words I'm about to type coming out of my own mouth, but they were almost too sweet.  Never-the-less, still yummy and certainly cured my craving for something sweet.  *Also, note to those thinking about trying the recipe - make sure you know the difference between parchment paper and wax paper.  I didn't figure it out until I noticed the cookies smoking a little bit after just a few minutes...Don't worry, we salvaged them and they turned out fine, just a little distorted.

Pinterest, you haven't let me down yet...keep 'em coming!

Photo of the Day - Free as the Breeze

1.30.12 - Photo of the Day

 There is nothing like a brisk walk after being cooped up behind a desk all day on a Monday.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Photo(s) of the Day - Weekend

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Homemade chocolate chip cookies.

1.29.12 - Photo of the Day

My incredibly stylish husband...

Friday, January 27, 2012

Photo of the Day - Traditions

In a surprising move, the hubs asked if I wanted to spend a little time together since we were both off work today, instead of him going to the farm.  Of course, my first thought was that it was a trap and he was only offering because he wanted something.  However, to my surprise and delight, he really did just want to spend some time together. The shock kept coming once we were in the car and he says, "Want to go in that new Lola Belle store? Maybe we can go to that one place in Loveville too."

Again, what the hell has come over him, and what has he broken, committed us to, or wants to do...

"Yeah I like those kinds of places, I like the old kind of stuff they have."

Well, I'll be...

1.27.12 - Photo of the Day 

Traditions of Loveville was filled with gorgeous things, and a lot were on sale, but this was the only thing I found in our price range today. A lovely set of 1950's style tea towels, perfect for our kitchen.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Photo of the Day - Young Republican

Today I am so proud and happy for my younger brother, Tyler, who is enjoying every minute of being a political science major at the University of North Florida.  The boy has been talking politics since I can remember, and is now truly in all his glory as the Republican presidential debate rolled into his University today. Thank you for knowing your stuff, Ty, because there are so many Americans, young and old, that are easily swayed by the mass media...I would know, I have a degree in Mass Communications. You are a great example to any and all looking to get involved with politics, way to go and keep up the hard work!

1.26.12 - Photo of the Day

My brother, Tyler, sporting his Newt button, along with his fellow young Republicans working hard to support Newt Gingrich today at the University of North Florida.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

A Pinterest Taste Test

As I've mentioned before, I've become slightly obsessed with Pinterest. As a child, I was always cutting and pasting (the old fashioned way, with scissors and glue...) pretty dresses, clever sayings, and places I wanted to go from magazines to my own collages.  So, naturally, when I found out what Pinterest entailed, I jumped on the bandwagon. Quickly.

Not only do I love browsing through the gorgeous photography, crafty creations, and crude humor, but the recipes seem to have me hooked as well. It's no secret that my cooking skills leave a little something to be desired; however my culinary curiosity has been sparked lately. It may be my age and my hungry husband, but I also think it has something to do with the delicious ideas I've been finding on Pinterest

One of the first things I ever pinned was what I like to call the apple sandwich. It was probably created with children in mind, but again, if you know me, you know that my palate isn't exactly refined. Anyway, I saw this "recipe" if you will, and knew I wanted to try it. And today was the day...

The verdict? Just as delicious as I had hoped!

Photo of the Day - Quiet Morning

1.25.12 - Photo of the Day

The early morning sky over the cold, still Potomac River.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Finding Hope

I came across this beautiful quote and photo today on Pinterest, and I couldn't help but share it here on my blog.  "Let your hope make you glad. Be patient in time of trouble & never stop praying." What powerful and true words. I am not an overly religious person, however I do believe in God and I feel that the power of prayer can move mountains. Figuratively, of course.

Earlier today I thought to myself, "What is happening to my family, why is so much falling apart?" And then I saw this quote and realized that instead of questioning God and the things that are happening in my life, I should be praying for guidance and advice, practicing patience during these turbulent times, and holding on to hope to help make it through each day.

Though I may not "practice" my faith as I much as I used to, or as much as some would like, I am beginning to realize how important it truly is in my life.

Photo of the Day - Sunset

1.24.12 - Photo of the Day

Another gorgeous sunset in Coltons Point.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Oh Dear - Photo(s) of the Day(s)


1.20.12 - Photo of the Day

A photo of my sweet Granny, seated and smiling at her daughter, Dawn, at my bridal shower in June of 2010.  Rest in Peace, Granny, we love and miss you more than you'll know.

1.21.12 - Photo of the Day

Seventh District Scrambled Eggs. Yum.

1.22.12 - Photo of the Day

Ravens vs. Patriots...great game, even with the disheartening loss.

1.23.12 - Photo of the Day

Another Monday. And for some reason I keep thinking my outfit looked very "French" today.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

A Chest in Distress - How To

Since my discovery of the ever-addicting Pinterest, I’ve been flooded with lots of fun and crafty ideas.  Recently, a friend of mine told me she had an older chest that she wanted to strip and re-do.  She asked if it was something I could help her with since she is expecting a beautiful baby girl in April and wouldn’t be able to do it herself.  My first thought was, “Yay! Congratulations” and my second was, “Yay! A chance to get some experience and try out some of the fun ideas I’ve found.”

Unfortunately, I didn’t take any before pictures of the chest so I will do my best to describe it to you. It is probably at least 20 years old, had about 5 layers of different, thick paints on it, was missing the majority of its knobs, and even had a few knicks and cracks on it. Let’s just say it has been really loved over the years. ;)

First things first, we started by stripping the paint.  Find yourself a fairly warm and large area to work.  Take the drawers out, grab an old, large paint brush that you don’t mind messing up, and start applying thick helpings of Citristrip over all painted areas of the piece.

Let the stripper marinate on the piece for anywhere from 1 – 24 hours. The thicker and older the paint, the longer you’re going to want it to sink in. For the record, it took about 2.5 times of applying the Citristip for this project.

You will know when it’s time to start scraping the paint off, because the paint will have a bubbled effect.  Next you’ll need a decent sized paint scraper.  Be sure to follow the grain of the wood (if you’re working with wood) and carefully scrap off the paint and gel mix.

Once you have finished scraping off as much of the paint as you can, you’ll want to take an old rag and mineral spirits and wipe down your piece. Don’t go overboard, just enough to gently wipe it over.

From this point, you will need to let the piece dry out, especially working with wood.  Hopefully you’re working in a climate controlled area where you can leave it for a day or two. You will be able to tell when the piece has dried completely.

Next, if there are still a few leftover flecks of paint, or rough areas, you will need to sand them down. Depending on the size of your piece, I recommend using either a square sanding block that’s easy to grip, or an electric palm sander.  I used the Skil Palm Sander, and it made the sanding portion of this project a breeze!

Once you’re finished sanding wipe the piece down to remove any debris. In my case, the dresser has so many layers of paint and was so old, that the paint was actually embedded into the dresser in some parts.  So, I had to apply a layer of primer before I could attempt to paint it the desired color.  Otherwise, if you’re staining the wood, this would be the part where you go ahead and stain it.

My friend originally wanted to strip the chest and stain it to match the crib she had purchased. Once I told her that it wouldn’t be possible to stain it because of the deep paint stains, we decided to find a paint that was as close to the color of the crib as possible.  We decided on Valspar Buckeye Brown Gloss.

We applied two coats of the beautiful brown paint, and then moved on to a few small finishing touches.  My friend has decided to go with Lavender and Green for her daughters room, so I thought, what better way to add a special touch, than through her color theme.  I made a trip to Michaels and found some purple wood grain and green and purple flower pattern scrapbooking paper.  Using Mod Podge, I carefully decoupaged the inside of the drawers, so each time she opens one, she’ll get a little pop of color! My mom also helped me find perfectly matching lavender knobs for the drawers from target.
And here is the final product:

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Photo of the Day - Sweet Treats

An extremely thoughtful co-worker of mine made the most delicious treats for us this week.  Apparently they are called Sea Salt Caramels. Absolutely adorable, and absolutely delicious...and gone...

1.19.12 - Photo of the Day

Sweet Treats.
She is to cute, with the color coordinating wrappers and even a purple ribbon along the outside of the box. I seriously need to find the recipe, these melt in your mouth with the perfect combination of sweet and salty.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Photo of the Day - God's Brush

This past Sunday, my family lost one of its pillars.  My dear Great-Grandmother, Granny, passed away at the incredible age of 93.  Witty, loving, and full of spunk, Granny never changed in the 25 years I was lucky enough to spend with her.  It hit me really hard yesterday, realizing how much I will truly miss her. Granny's life was never easy, but you never heard her complain about it either.  To give you an idea of what a strong woman she was, here is just one example; She gave birth to nine children, the fourth being my grandmother who was a whopping 10lbs.

As far back as I can remember, Granny has been in the picture.  She was always tending to her plants and flowers, reorganizing her living spaces, going on her daily walks, laughing at stories from the past, and ALWAYS telling it like it was. Granny really was the picture of health, until about 5 years ago when she started battling problems with her pancreas. Doctors will tell you, there aren't many other illnesses as painful as pancreatitis.  She was strong, and even managed to fight through a staph infection, only to be overcome a year or so later with severe pancreas pain again.  As sad as I am to see my sweet Granny go, I take comfort in the fact that I know she is no longer in pain.  I love you Granny, and will miss you everyday!

1.18.12 - Photo of the Day

Blustery Bliss.
They say that the sky is God's canvas; Tonight he painted a beauty, welcoming Granny home.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Photo of the Day - Donuts

Someone at my parents house is trying to kill me...

1.17.12 - Photo of the Day

Death by Donut.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Photo of the Day - Good Morning

Off work for the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday, I was able to relax and do what I wanted today.  As Bubba left around 6:30am I woke up and couldn't get back to sleep, so I decided to turn on a pot of coffee, and enjoy my lazy day.  Just as I was about to sit down in my pink robe, with my cup of coffee in one hand and the new edition of Coastal Living in the other, I found my photo of the day.  

1.16.12 - Photo of the Day

Good Morning, Colton's Point.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Photo of the Day - Football Sunday

Today was a great Sunday.  We had a small get-together to steam some shrimp and oysters and watch football.  First up was my team, the Baltimore Ravens vs. the Houston Texans.  It wasn't the smooth sailing victory I was hoping for, but it was a Ravens win non-the-less.  Next up was the Greenbay Packers vs. the New York Giants. There were two very pleased Giants fans in the house tonight:

1.15.12 - Photo of the Day

A Giant Celebration.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Photo of the Day - Memory Lane

Today's photo of the day, comes to you courtesy of my dear mother.  I woke up to a text message that read, "Sweetest baby ever!" with the following picture attached.

1.14.12 - Photo of the Day

Little Mindle.