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Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Great gift idea

For my friends who know KNOW that I love to shop. =) I love finding great deals and especially love finding that perfect gift. With the holidays here and a new year just around the corner, full of special occasions, I thought I would share my friend's website with you all.

Sweetheart Silver has a wonderful line of handmade jewelry for men and women. Each piece is hand stamped and carries a special message. I ordered the one at the top of my post. All of them come packaged in a silver organza cute is that? You can also choose to have them gift wrapped in glossy white paper, silver sticker, organza pouch, box and gift card. Because I am a huge supporter of Livestrong, I chose to get the "Fight like a Girl" design, in support of breast cancer. I also like it because, well....girls rock! Yep, we're tough...ya hear that guys?! By the way, that perfect pink ribbon is not soldered to the oval. It's a separate pendant so it has movement. LOVE THAT!

Here is another design that I absolutely adore and want if I ever get pregnant. I think this would be the perfect gift for an expecting mother. It's original and personal.
This one is called "I love you". No explanations necessary. =)

It's fun looking at all of the designs and reading the meanings behind them. If you are a guy looking for a simple yet classy piece of jewelry for your gal, I recommend reading the descriptions and messages of each piece of jewelry. Heck, you can tell her the meaning behind the piece you bought her and she will be amazed at your thoughtfulness.

In addition to the necklaces she also makes, earrings, bracelets and pet tags. If you are in sorority or fraternity she even has Greek letters. Great big/little sister gift in my opinion!

As I was looking at the website tonight I also noticed that she has a fund-raising program for non-profit, public or private school, club or organizations. I may be looking into that myself.

As an even bigger incentive to check out her site, I have a coupon for you all to use. You will get 10% off of your orders if you use the code "branson". The code is in all lowercase letters and has NO quotation marks.

What are you waiting for? Go check out her website!

Monday, December 6, 2010

The Legend of Kung Fu Show

I blogged about wanting to see The Legend of Kung Fu show January this year and finally got a chance this month. In November I kept running into the cast at Tanger Mall or at the Wal-Mart's pretty easy to spot them....that whole shaved head thing.

My first run-in was at Tanger. I was getting my coupon book and a few of them were in line waiting to purchase them too. I get mine for free and wanted to give them one but...being the pathetic Chinese person that I am, I can't speak very much. I understand Chinese but can't actually speak it that well. What I CAN speak has an embarrassingly bad American accent. UGH. It took me a couple of minutes but I finally conveyed to them that I wanted to give them one of the books for free.

After that I kept seeing them on Tuesdays. Apparently that is their day off and they go to the Supercenter around noon. I usually went after our morning show, hence the bumping into them. We didn't start doing morning shows until November so that's why I never saw them before. I just figured that out as I was typing the previous sentence. LOL

Forty of the cast members came to see our show and we loved it. I loved it. I love seeing "my people" in the audience, especially a HUGE group of them. They were the perfect audience! I saw them before the show and talked with a few of them, mainly the five that spoke English. I also went out at intermission to meet a few more of them and our family and their cast all took pictures after the show. There are a few boys in their cast and the oldest member is 30. A couple of their boys did a few tricks and our little guys tried to do those tricks after they left. TeeHee.

Our family finally got a chance to see their show a couple of weeks ago. AMAZING!!! I love martial arts so I was loving every minute of it. If you haven't seen their show....GO! Well, you'll have to wait until the Spring because they all went home a couple of days ago, but go next year!
I plan on seeing their show again and can't wait to see them running around town again.

My Team RadioShack Goodies

Here are a few pictures of the Team RadioShack Goodies that I received from my friends a little over a month ago. I have AMAZING friends!

It all started when Team RadioShack posted that they were having a team signing at Mellow Johnny's in Austin, TX. Six riders from the team were going to be there AND they were going to be giving away a special gift to the first 28 people in line! WHAT ?!?! So....the wheels started spinning and stopped on Greg. Greg is the one person I know who lives in Austin. Thankfully I have known him since 1987 and I knew I could ask him for this huge favor. I wasn't positive he would be able to and wasn't sure if he would be willing because he isn't a crazed cycling fan, like myself. Luckily he is a wonderful and willing friend. He actually had a birthday party that he needed to go to but decided to stop by early to see if there was already a line. When he got there they were handing out tickets to people and he got a ticket....a GREAT that was low enough to get this mystery gift. YES!!!

So, Greg was able to get a "28" jersey signed for me AND the gift signed too. What was the gift? It was a "28" podium cap that they team wore in the Tour de France. SO COOL! SO, only the team has them and 27 other people. WAHOOOOO!

In case you were wondering which riders were at the signing:
Jani Brajkovic
Markel Irizar
Ben King
Jason McCartney
Yaroslav Popovych
Bjorn Selander

Amazingly enough, I got a few more goodies. My friend, Char, whom I met back in the Team Discovery Days on the message boards, was also in Austin that weekend. She grabbed me a couple of goodies also. Thanks Char! I love them! She sent me a poster and a Livestrong Handkerchief. =)

Monday, October 11, 2010

My new Chainsaw Sculptures

For the past two years I have gone to the Loghoggers Chainsaw Sculpting Competition at the Titanic Museum. I am truly in awe at what the artists can do with a log and a chainsaw. The art that they create is nothing short of amazing! At the end of the day on Saturday and Sunday they auction off the pieces that were created that day. Me? I love a good auction. =)
I bought this Eagle last year and I absolutely LOVE it! It was made by Joe Hintz and is somewhere around 250 to 300 pounds of solid Black Walnut. It is one of the first things that you see when you enter our house and has gotten countless comments. Thanks Joe!
Me with Joe at this year's event. I talked to him and am hoping he will have time to work on the eagle a little more the next time he comes through Branson. He mentioned that he didn't get a chance to finish the piece to his liking and would be willing to work on it again. YAY! If you're reading this Joe, I'm holding you to it! =)
Another one of Joe's pieces...
...and another.
This year I decided to bid on a turtle. At the moment it is in the garage airing out. The wood and stain needs to wear off a tad before it can come into the house. Last year the eagle took a couple of months to air out weighed too much for us to move it. This turtle was made by Steven Higgins.
This is Steve with his Fiance, Gabrielle. I believe they are getting married in five weeks....yay!
I tried winning these two turtles the previous day but I lost. BOO. Aren't his turtles great?
I almost bid on these owls last year...
...and this cute bear.

I added links to Joe's and Steve's websites so take a peek if you get a chance. I'm sure you will be impressed with the things that they create. Chainsaws people! They do this with chainsaws!!
I'm already looking forward to next year's competition.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

I won 2 cheesecakes from Earth Cafe!!!!!

I am so incredibly thrilled!!! I entered a contest last week, trying to win a cheesecake from Earth Cafe. I was so excited when I read about these cakes. They look amazing! Healthy AND yummy, ya can't beat that! Of course, I did not win that contest. I looked at the possibility of ordering one but was a tad hesitant because of the shipping cost. The next day I saw another contest giving away TWO cheesecakes. I decided to enter and wait to see if I could possibly win this contest. If not I would place an order myself. Well.....I just found out that I won!!!!! Thanks so much Shoni!!!

Here is the wonderful announcement. Wahoooo, I can NOT wait! Now I need to choose 2 cheesecakes. Hmmmmmm

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Vendor Fair prize

This year's vendor fair at the Chateau was filled with even more vendors than last year. If you have never gone to a vendor fair in's like one-stop shopping. You can get everything that you need for your show there. There are people that sell things from air conditioning to graphic printing to food and more. We have even found a plumber for our home from this fair.

One of the other perks of the vendor fair is the fact that you can win prizes! YAY PRIZES! This is what I won last year. VERY COOL! We don't drink coffee so we use it for herbal teas and my brother's family used it for coffee when they visited.

This year I won this nifty wreath. As you can see, Kahlan is already having a blast with it.

Hope our luck holds out next year. =)

Saturday, September 25, 2010

9/22/2010 Garden Update

This is actually from Adam's parent's garden. We still have cherry tomatoes growing but we haven't picked them in a few weeks. DOH! These are the sweet potatoes that they have growing in the front. We have never planted potatoes before but I think we'll try some next year. We will probably skip planting the cantaloupes and use that section for potatoes. It took me a little while to harvest a few sweet potatoes because I kept digging in the wrong spot. I was eaten alive by bugs in the process worth it!
I only picked a few of them to try them out. The smallest one in the picture is about the size of a golf ball.
This one was a bit funky looking. =)

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

9/1/2010 Garden Update: WATERMELONS!!!

It's watermelon time y'all !!!!!! THIS is why I love heirloom watermelons! Aren't the colors just fabulous?!?! Here are the last watermelons of the season. As per usual, these all went to our family. We had already passed out a few to our neighbors....these are the ones left after that.
Here is a picture of the Orangelo. It was so incredibly orange. VERY cool looking, however, I still like the taste of the yellow better. This year the yellow was much sweeter, in my opinion. The Crimson Sweets didn't do as well because the vines got attacked by beetles. Arggg. That's what we get for having an organic garden. Well, that and the fact that I was too lazy to go out there and treat them with organic bug killing techniques. We'll make sure to do that next year.

Yep, I'm sitting ON the watermelons. Not too comfortable. LOL

Sunday, August 22, 2010

8/22/2010 Garden Update

I haven't been posting a lot of our tomato pictures this year because they look like the pictures that I posted last year. =) We are still harvesting a ton of our Sweet 100 cherry tomatoes and the yellow pear shaped ones. As you can see, the tallest plant is at least 10 feet tall. It would probably be taller if we had a way to support the top vines. I'm a whopping 5'3" so you can see how much taller it is than I am, even on my toes. I've been mainly making the raw tomato sauce and freezing it for later this year. We've brought several bags to the theatre to share with our family too.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

8/19/2010 Garden Update

These are the watermelons that we picked today. Kahlan decided to sit amongst the yumminess. The longer one is called an Orangelo. I CAN NOT wait to cut that one open next week. I want to see exactly how orange a watermelon can get. =) The other stripey one is a Crimson Sweet and the other is a Missouri Yellow. We like to wait for a few days before we cut them. I'm not sure if it's true, my mind they seem to get a little sweeter when we do that.
Here I am trying to sneak under the netting that we put up.

Adam cutting open the 32.2 pound Missouri Yellow.

Friday, August 13, 2010

8/13/2010 Garden Update

We picked 3 more watermelons today. Adam carried the bigger ones. =) These ones are the Heirloom Missouri Yellow Flesh Watermelons. Hopefully they are as yummy as "the Bean".
This is the main section of our melons that are left to harvest. To the right was where the Golden ones were and to the right of those are the Ali Babas and the Orangelos. These are the Crimson Sweets and the Missouri Yellows.
This was the biggest of the day! The other ones were 22.2 lbs and 15.8 lbs. As per usual, as kitty must be in the picture. This time Chewie wanted camera time.
Kahlan having fun on her new toys.
This was the cutting of "the Bean" AKA the Jelly Belly Melon from a few days ago. It was yummy!!!!

Monday, August 9, 2010

Raw Pasta Sauce Recipe

I am in love with this recipe. This raw pasta sauce is SO easy to make, healthy and SO YUMMY! Trust me, if you have garden tomatoes, you NEED to try it. I even gave some to our meat and potatoes neighbors and they loved it! Cindy found a recipe online but I am not sure what the source is so I can't credit it. I changed it a bit actually is my take on the recipe.
6 tomatoes ( I used 6 two-handed scoops of our cherry tomatoes)
Handful of sun-dried tomatoes
1 small onion
3 cloves of garlic
1/2 cup fresh basil
1 T Rosemary
1/2 cup Olive Oil
1 t salt
1 T Balsamic Vinegar
4 pitted dates
Handful of cashews
Black pepper to taste

You will need a food processor or blender. Cut tomatoes and onions to proper size to blend. I love that you don't need to peel the skin off. The cherry tomatoes made this even faster. =)
Put everything in and whiz it all up. TADA. You're done!

It's great as a dip and on pasta. It's also good heated up but way healthier if you just eat it room temperature. I'm not quite sure how good it would be with store bought tomatoes because in my opinion those taste awful. Garden tomatoes or farmer's market ones would be best.


8/9/2010 Garden Update

This update will be all about the watermelons. =) We picked all of the Royal Golden Watermelons. They look pretty cool when you slice them open because the rinds are nice and golden yellow while the flesh is red. We are trying to avoid the crows attacking them, as usual, hence the newspaper in the background of the picture. We wrapped them for a few days since I didn't have time to buy the bird netting. It actually worked! I forgot to wrap our one cantaloupe and it was attacked....the watermelons were unscathed.
We picked a total of 5 Royal Goldens. The largest one was 20.4 pounds.
We also picked an Ali Baba Watermelon AKA my Jelly Belly Watermelon. We are waiting to cut this baby up...we need to finish the one we cut up yesterday. TeeHee
Jelly Belly was a whopping 28.6 pounds. Every single one of the pictures that we have taken, while weighing a watermelon, comes complete with Kahlan.
I finally had a chance to go to Home Depot to pick up the bird netting. Adam had to pound the metal poles in with the back of an axe. Wahoooo. We tied the netting to the poles and are hoping that this will be enough to keep the crows out.

We found a cute bunny amongst the melons today. Unfortunately he is eating the plants. Grrrrrr. Shotgun anyone???