Sunday, July 26, 2009

Is the Trip to the Commissary Really Worth it?

You bet it is! On average, shopping at DeCA saves over 30%*!

Single: $1,029
Married Couple: $1,885
Married w/ 1 child: $2,309
Married w/ 2 children: $2,957

*Annual savings derived from cost-of-food figures from the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture Center for Food Nutrition Policy and Promotion & figures from DaCA’s price comparison study, which compares commissary prices with those of local supermarkets, major grocery storechains, and supercenters.

Increase your savings even more by using coupons!

According to the annual commissary market basket survey, the highest commissary savings are on meat and produce - 36 to 40 percent - but major savings over retail can be found in all departments. Savings are even greater in high-cost areas.

The commissaries, with nearly 280 locations worldwide, provide groceries to military personnel, retirees, Guard and Reserve members, and their families. Authorized patrons purchase items at cost plus a 5-percent surcharge, which covers the costs of building new commissaries and modernizing existing ones.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Pasta Salad

When it gets warm, I make pasta salad. I know a lot of people are indifferent on pasta salad, but that is probably because you bought it. When you make it, it's quite nice.That is whole wheat pasta, by the way. Because it is healthy.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Baked Churro Munchies

I hate frying things... It's just soooo unhealthy... Unfortunately I love churros... But I can never make them because up until this point, I havent been able to find a baked churro recipe... Well vula! Thanks to My Tastey Treasures "Baked Churro Munchies" recipe... Problem solved!

Baked Churros Munchies
Set your oven rack to lower-middle position;
heat oven to 400 degrees.
Bring your 1 cup water,
1 stick butter, salt
1 teaspoon sugar a rolling boil in a saucepan. Turn your heat to low, add your bleached flour...
...and stir with a wooden spoon...
...until mixture forms a soft ball.
You now need to 5 eggs...
But only 1 at a time, Thoroughly stirring each one in with a wooden spoon. Let the dough stand for about 5 minutes until it can hold its shape.
IMPORTANT!!While you are waiting the 5 minutes, please humm the theme music to Jeopardy. HMMM MMMHMM HMM HMM HMM MMM , and bang your forks to the beat on the counter, ask your 4 children under 11 to join in, and hope that the men in the white jackets come to take you away. HaHa HeeHee HOHo .. to the funny farm.. where life is beautiful all the time..
This should do. Cover your cookie sheet with parchment or use those jolly good silpats. Drop a scant 2 tablespoons of dough to form balls. Bake 30 minutes, until golden.
Yes, ever observant cyberpeople, I must have made 2 trays, one with parchment, and one with jolly good silpat, why, my inner voice told me too.
Reduce your oven to 200 degrees.
Now its time to prepare the stuff that dreams are made of.
Melt 1 stick of butter in a saucepan, and pour in a dish.
Next mix 1 cup sugar with 1 1/2 tablespoons cinnamon-- I always think of emeril when I use that a bowl. Now set up your stuff , get real organized, you know.
Now, Dunk, dip, soak, drench, saturate each munchie puff in the butter ...

Coat in your cinnamon sugar mixture, thoroughly coat, don't be afraid, really gently roll it around in the stuff, nice thick coating is your goal. Lay it on thick.

Now poke an X in the puff bottoms with a knife, and place back on your cookie sheet.

Set in your 200 degree oven for, get this, 45 minutes to 3 hours, until they crisp. It took my guys about 2 1/2 hours.. Don't worry, It will be worth it. In the meantime, don't have a cow, I have other things for you to do.

Make your warm chocolate dipping sauce.

Heat your bittersweet chocolate, 2 cups whole milk ( I used 1 %) wow, aren't I the health conscious one?

...your sugar, and instant a medium sized saucepan until chocolate melts. Now mix the cornstarch...with the water and whisk into the chocolate until it thickens.. it thickens quickly. Done!

Take your gorgeous churro puffs right out of the oven...
Drizzle your churro puffs with that silky smooth, warm chocolate dipping sauce you made.. .

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Hair Bows, Hair Streamers & Hair "Sculptures"

This is just one of the MANY reasons I love having a girl!
I get the chance to make her all these cute hair bows!
Sadly, as you can see, it's become quite an obsession!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


I guess I'm just a little thrown off when I encounter those people who see friendships as this disposable commodity. Maybe it's a civilian thing... They know there's no rush to make friends, they're probably going to be living in the same town, in the same county, might not even leave their state of birth in their entire life time. Perhaps they take friendships for granted because they vaingloriously believe they will always be surrounded by friends, with no effort on their part, you don't know what you've got 'til it's gone, as the saying goes. Maybe a person who's never felt loneliness can never truly appreciate friendship.

I don't think I will ever understand how some people regard friendships as this profitable conveniences or sparkly new toys to be used up and tossed aside with little regard to either personal dedication or emotional consequence. To me, friendships are some of life's greatest treasures, never to be taken for granted or treated lightly, certainly never to be thoughtlessly tossed aside when the selfish perceived usefulness of the friendship is over.

Maybe it's just me... I could be totally off, but as a military wife, and as a military brat, I've just gotten used to befriending people fast and making it a point to keep the friends I make! Maybe I just let my guard down too early, maybe I just get attached too fast... But to me, time is precious, I don't know when we'll be PCSing next and I find this need to make every last minute count.

Some seem comfortable to profess friendship only when they need you, and then drop you when someone else comes along, or their need is filled, or it's no longer convenient. Give and take exists in all relationships. Some are just more interested in taking than giving.

I understand that some relationships can drift apart over time... I think ALL military wives understand that! But what I don't understand is how someone, with whom you have shared and enjoyed so much, can so quickly turn a cold shoulder or begin to ignore someone they once claimed as a friend. I hope I never understand this. It's not my nature. Short of an egregious betrayal of friendship, I just don't get it. Even then, I, by nature am quick to forgive. I may be more careful with such an individual, but wouldn't automatically exclude them from my life.

Over the past year I became VERY close with a small group of girls, but for the past month I sinced something was up with "the queen bee". Of course she wouldn't admit anything was bothering her, but I saw it in her face every time I opened my mouth. Well that, and the time of her voice. Any time I would suggest anything, she'd get this tone and just talk to me like i'm stupid. But you know what, I dealt with it... Not for me, she annoyed me to DEATH! But my daughter LOVES her two kids! Well yesterday I notice I had been deleted off of Facebook... I know, I know, sounds so lame... But she doesn't use a regular email, so facebook is really the only way to get a hold of her. So I go on her page to email her, honestly I didn't think much of it, I figured it was nothing more then a Facebook glitch... WRONG! I find a comment on her "wall" that says "[name] is tired of logging on to facebook only to read the same people's rants & raves. I can only hope that one day those people wake up and realize how precious life is and that by all their complaining they're just letting time slip by..." Then she makes a comment to her status by saying "Just did some 'house cleaning' to rid my friend list of those kind of people :) HAHA!! I can't stand campaigners!! Why didn't I do that sooner????"

Ok, I was pretty irritated at this point. This was a girl I regarded as one of my best friends here.... We hung out twice (some times three times a week) for the past YEAR! Just about every weekend we were getting together for family BBQ's... Our husband's golfed together... Oh, while we're on that topic, I call my husband, to tell him what happiness (still thinking it MAY be a mistake", nah, he looks and says he's been deleted too. So my husband goes on her husband's Facebook page to find this comment (from her, to her husband) "I miss you! Can't wait to see you tomorrow :) XOXO - and take a look at my friend list... I downsized to get rid of those people!! Later loozers!!!!" Uhhhhh ohhh kay... This WAS one of my good friends, and not only does she think she can just delete me from her facebook and I'll automatically be deleted from her life... But way to burn your bridges by trash talking for NO REASON... We still have plenty of mutual friends, so it's not like i'm NEVER going to see her again... She's just working her hardest to make it as awkward of an encounter as possible when we do see each other again.

The thing that just kinda rubs me the wrong way, is she has NO reason to say those things. I don't complain on Facebook... Well no more then the average person... She makes it look like I go on there every day saying things like "Oh my gawd, I hate my life" or constantly talking about how my life sucks... Which I've never done... Why? Because I'm quite a happy person (dry and sarcastic, but happy) and I most certainly DO NOT think my life sucks... I have an awesome life... I love my life... I wouldn't trade it for the world! But am I going to go on a social networking site and say that day in and day out? NO, because that would be "bragging".

After talking to a friend about all this, she suggested that I email "the queen bee" and "talk" to her, and maybe she would LET me back on her friends list. HAH! Wow! Beg to be LET back on her friends list, why? She's shown her true colors. I have little interest in maintaining any emotional connection with people who behave in such a way. Maybe their approach to relationships is no worse than mine and is just incompatible. I don't know, but I do know there are others whose perspective more closely matches mine, and they are the ones in whom I try to invest more. ...doesn't make losing someone you cared about easier, I guess, but I think it helps avoid future repeats. Fool me once...


Oven-Baked Onion Rings

I love love love onion rings, unfortunately I can't make them too often (or at all) because they are soooo incredibly unhealthy doe to deep frying them. Well problem solved! I finally figured out a way to oven fry union rings... And honestly... I like them way more then the last food fried ones!

  • 1 large Vidalia onion
  • 1 cup low-fat buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup cornflake crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Slice the onion and separate into rings.
  • Place in a shallow bowl and pour the buttermilk over the onion rings.
  • Chill for 1 hour.
  • Preheat oven to 400F.
  • Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.
  • Combine the corn flake crumbs, garlic powder, parsley, cumin, black pepper and salt in a medium bowl.
  • Mix to combine.
  • Measure 2 tablespoons of the corn flake mixture and place on a plate.
  • Remove one onion ring from the buttermilk and coat with the corn flake mixture.
  • Place on the prepared baking sheet.
  • Repeat with remaining onion rings, adding corn flake mixture 1 tablespoon at a time as needed.
  • Spray coated rings lightly with nonstick cooking spray.
  • Bake on the bottom rack of the oven until cooked through and crispy, 15-20 minutes.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Mexican Wedding Cookies

These cookies go by many names... Snow Balls, Mexican Wedding Cookies, Russian Tea Cakes, Butterballs, Showman Poop, White Italian Wedding Cookies and Danish Cookies... Reguardless of the name, I just call them delicious! My husband and I have both loved these cookies since we were kids, he's always begging me to make these mouth watering cookies... But I'll be honest, I'm a lazy baker... If I can't make it out of cake mix, I probably won't make it... Hence this incredibly easy recipe!
  • 1/2 C Vegetable Shortening
  • 1/4 C water
  • 1 egg white
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 box white cake mix
  • 1/2 C chopped nuts (optional)
  • 1/2 C mini semi sweet chocolate chips
  • confectioner’s sugar
  • Preheat oven to 375.
  • Mix shortening, water, vanilla, and egg white thoroughly.
  • Mix in cake mix, nuts, and chocolate chips until dough holds together.
  • Shape into one inch balls.
  • Place about two inches apart on un greased cookie sheet.
  • Bake until almost set, about ten minutes.
  • While warm dip tops in powdered sugar, cool.
add water, shortening, vanilla extract and egg white to a large bowl. then mix in the cake mix blending well with a mixer. add chocolate chips and nuts or for my family just chocolate chips. shape into 1-inch balls and place about 2 inches apart on a greased baking sheet. If your hands get a bit sticky while rolling the dough just wet your hands a little. Place in a 375 degree oven and bake until almost done. Like this. Your not going to brown them, just almost done looking let the cookies cool slightly on a cookie sheet or cooling rack. While still warm roll the cookies in powdered sugar. It said to dip the tops in powdered sugar but we did the whole cookie. ummmm place back on cooling rack. they turned our really pretty. These cookies freeze really well. When completely cooled i place them in a large ziplock bag and placed them in my deep freeze till thanksgiving. Then remove from freezer and if you like you can roll them again in powdered sugar. These cookies are so darn good I will be making these for years to come!


The FRG is a great organization if it isn't corrupted in your husband's unit. Every FRG I have experienced, and especially the recent one, were horrible. I wouldn't wish them on anyone. If the FRG isn't supportive in your area, leave them alone. It will only get worse. The problem I have found with the FRG are that most wives pull rank. I had one First Sergeant's wife that tried to pull rank on me, and it wasn't pretty. She tried to claim that SHE had a "commander". You don't have a commander unless you are in the military. You are not apart of the military except for being a dependent. I thought she was going to hit me after I said that. She was enraged. See, there is a good example of how childish an army wife can be. Since that incident, I realized that the FRG shouldn't be by rank. She was an FRG leader and didn't have the maturity to handle it. It should be by leadership skills. That is how they promote in the military. So, why not the FRG. So that is why I call the Family Readiness Group the Fake Righteous Groupies. It is a clique club that is absolutely preposterous and far from what it should be.

ObamaCare, Yay or Nay?

Great information on this health bill Obama's pushing...
And how bad it could be!!!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Roasted Cauliflower.

I made this up.
I took one head of cauliflower (this is a weird word to type, by the way) and made it into florets. Then I drizzled olive oil on it and put lots of salt on it and baked at 350 for 30 minutes.
It was really good!

Peach Preserve Goodness!

Well now that I've got this stock pile of peach preserve... I've been looking for things to do with it! I came across a few yummy looking recipes... And with a few tweaks, I'm sure they'll be quite yummy. I'm making the Chipotle-Peach Gazed Chicken for the hubby tonight, while I'm making the Peach Glazed Salmon for myself.

Chik'n Glaze
  • 1/4 cup peach preserves
  • 2 tablespoons lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons chipotle chile in adobo sauce, seeded, chopped
  • 1 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
  • 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 2 1/2 lb)
  • 1 teaspoon fresh garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
Peach-Glazed Salmon
  • 1/2 cup melted butter
  • 1 cup peach preserves
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon prepared mustard
  • 2 salmon fillets (1 pound each)
30-Minute, Green Tea & Peach Shrimp Marinade
  • 1/4 cup strong brewed green tea
  • 1/4 cup peach preserves
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Thyme Leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon Oregano Leaves
  • 1/2 teaspoon Sea Salt Grinder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground Red Pepper
  • 1lb devained shrimp

Peach Preserves

For some reason I've never tried to make preserves. Actually I had never had any preserves up till last year when I had a neighbor bring over some peach preserves she had made and I was hooked!!! Unfortunately I didn't have her recipe... I think hers may have been so good in part because of the peaches... But this recipe none the less is VERY easy and quite yummy... Enjoy!


  • 4 c. sliced peaches
  • 2 c. sugar
To peel the peaches, cut an "X" into the bottom half of each peach and drop into a pot of boiling water for 30 seconds. Transfer the peaches to a bowl of ice water to cool. Remove the skin; pit them, and cut in quarters.

  • In a large saucepan, combine the peaches with the sugar.
  • Let the mixture stand for 1 hour to bring out the juices.
  • Simmer the mixture for 30 minutes.
  • After 30 minutes, bring the mixture to a boil, stirring, over high heat.
  • Reduce heat to low; simmer the mixture, stirring occasionally, for about 1 hour and 30 minutes.
  • Using a spoon, skim off any foam from the preserves, if necessary.
  • Remove from heat; let stand for 1 hour.
  • Ladle the preserves into jars, filling to within 1/4" of the rims.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

10 Ways to Annoy A Military Wife

So, I bought this magnet through the Cafe Press website quite some time ago:

1. As soon as you find out her husband is deployed, take it upon yourself to tell her exactly how you feel about the war and how WE shouldn't be over there.

2. Follow that up by asking how she feels about the (former) President. (I bought this a year or so ago).

3. Look surprised and say, "I don't know how you do it, I could never LET my husband do that."

4. If she's pregnant, be sure and ask if the military is going to send her husband home for the birth.

5. Tell her she should really consider getting additional life insurance since her husband has a good chance of getting killed.

6. Remind her how lucky she is that her husband gets all that extra tax free money when he's deployed.

7. Try to relate to her by saying you know just how she feels because your husband was out of town on business for a week last month.

8. Ask her how she can be so faithful for 15 whole months and if she worries about her husband cheating on her.

9. Inquire on whether or not her husband has killed anyone.

10. Be sure to ask her when her husband comes home if he's done with the military or if he has to go back.

I got asked #10 a lot when DH was deployed, as well as #3, #4, #6, #1, and #2. Yup - I pretty much got all these statements/questions when he was deployed.

Isn't it amazing that non-military people have NO clue as to what we go through or that they can be so uncaring of what we are feeling. I know we briefly talked about this on last night's AWTR show - but I do think that being a military spouse is vastly different than being the spouse of a cop or firefighter. While their jobs aren't the safest ones in the country - they aren't being deployed (unless they're also in the military) to fight an "unkown" enemy. That's just how I think of it.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Newest Family Member!

So somehow we acquired a tortoise today! DH went to work to look for his missing cell phone and decided to take our 3 year old... He claims there happened to be another Marine who got caught keeping this tortoise and a couple Guinea Pigs in the barracks, he gave some sob story about how he found the Guinea Pigs a home but needed someone to take the tortoise... Now mind you our 3 year olds's standing right there... So then she starts... She wants to play with the tortoise and take it home... And my husband CAN'T say no to her! Ugh! So I get a phone call from HER saying "daddy got me MY turtle" ...Great... One more thing to take care of... So far it's been pretty easy, we propped the thing up in front of the TV and he's watching Disney right now... Seems fairly happy... And interested in the show...

Friday, July 17, 2009

10 Ways for Civilians to REALLY "Support Our Troops" by supporting the families

#1 Thank them for their sacrifice.
Keep it short and simple. Intense feelings of sadness and fear lie just beneath the surface. Too much emotional sympathy, or worse, pity, may undo their hard-won self-control.

#2 Leave opinions about the war at the door.
Military spouses are as diverse in their beliefs as civilians. Their beliefs may not be the same as yours but those beliefs may help them cope with the fear and sadness they feel during a deployment. Just listen.

#3 Donate to organizations that support service members and their families.
One is Operation: A Bit of Home. For a long list of worthy organizations visit or vist ReMIND Cause to donate.

#4 Friends, Family members and neighbors can give them a break.
During deployment, homefront life is often isolated and grueling. Give specific offers of help - dinner, mow the lawn, offer to watch their kids for an evening.

#5 Employers can give military spouses more flexible hours before, during, and immediately after a deployment, understanding that the spouses' home demands have doubled.

#6 Educators and daycare providers can turn to the Military Child Education Coalition,, to learn how to help children facing a deployment.

#7 Professional organizations can offer pro bono services such as donated legal services to families with deployed service members. Counselors who wish to volunteer can try contacting the counseling organizations listed on Kristin's website.

#8 Churches, clubs, and book groups can offer support groups and social events, especially around holidays when a deployed family members' absence may be extra hard. See how some churches are reaching out to military families at

#9 Educate yourself about the services available to military families, many of whom are unaware and suffer alone. Family, friends, neighbors, coworkers, clergy, teachers, and others can create a safety net of support to steer individuals toward help.

#10 Stay engaged!
Make sure your military reflects the country you want America to be. Pay attention when military issues come up in the news, compare information from a variety of sources, write letters to the editor, and hold your elected leaders accountable for how they use the military and how well they support them.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Avery Angel

I've been following this blog, Keeping up with the Keirsey's, for a few months now. The blog follows the Keirsey family, and their struggles with giving birth to a premature baby diagnosed with Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia and a heart defect known as Double Outlet Right Ventricle. It is with great sadness that I announce, their little Angel Avery has passed on. After much agony and deliberation, discussed on their blog, the Keirsey family decided, it would be in the best interest of Avery to remove her from life support.

For anyone interested, there will be a service held in Little Rock, AR to celebrate little Avery's 9 weeks of life.

July 18,2009, visitation at 2pm, service at 3pm
Pulaski Heights Baptist Church
2200 Kavanaugh
Little Rock, AR 72205

Keeping Up With the Keirseys

Furthermore, the
Keirse's are asking that donations be made to the Arkansas Children's Hospital in Avery's name, in lieu of flowers.

Oatmeal Cookies


1 cup butter, softened
1 cup white sugar
1 cup packed brown sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 cups quick cooking oats
raisins or nuts (optional)


1. In a medium bowl, cream together white sugar, butter, and brown sugar. Beat in eggs one at a time, then stir in vanilla.

2. Combine flour, cinnamon, baking soda,and salt. Stir into the creamed mixture. Mix in oats. If you are using nuts or raisins, mix into dough, combining well. Cover, and chill dough for at least one hour.

3. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease cookie sheets. Roll the dough into balls, and place 2 inches apart on cookie sheets.

4. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes in preheated oven. Allow cookies to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Makes approx. 36-60 cookies, depending on how large or small you make them.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Flag folding

From the Sons of the American Revolution

A properly proportioned flag will fold 13 times on the triangles, representing the 13 Original Colonies. When finally complete the triangular folded flag is emblematic of the tri-corner hat worn by the Patriots of the American Revolution. When folded, no red or white stripe is to be evident leaving only the honor field of blue and stars.