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Monday, September 30, 2013

End of the Line...for Nines...

Well, sort of...for our September "Nines."

Our goal continues: Do nine posts each month for the rest of 2013. We think we can! (We'll be sooo disappointed if we don't...truly.)

Somehow, we don't know exactly how it's happened, it will be October in a few hours. Why do some days go so turtles...and then, suddenly, an entire month has whizzed by? Like The Roadrunner being chased by that rascally coyote. The first of September was yesterday, right? So how is it that a new month is nearly here? Sheesh. Sigh. Yikes.

We plan to re-commit to bringing you some new Yummies and Yeehaws! To bringing you more honesty. To sharing news and insight and funnies.

We thank you, dearly, for visiting us, Sweet Friends, Everywhere...

Hugs and Smooches...and Happy Fall, Y'all!

ELC (on behalf of TLC and Little Leighton, too!)

Sunday, September 29, 2013

TLC's Nine Favourite Yummies!

It's moi's turn!

Here, now, are my Top Nine Yummies:

1. ELC, Little Leighton and I still (obviously) love and adore our Piggy Pajamas. They are my MOST favourite Yummy discovery to date. They complete us. (In fact, I'm wearing my Peacocks as I type this!)

2. I'm trying to be more proactive in my "weekly menu planning." This FABULOUS Chicken and Rice Salad has just been added to the list for the upcoming week. It's even better the next day for lunch! Though some might consider it a little "summer-y," I think it can be enjoyed all year. Especially since our daytime temperatures are still hovering in the low 90s. UGH. Where is my sweater-weather?

3. I love Target (I think I've only mentioned that 9 bazillion times), and I love revamping my lampshades in the Fall and Spring!

4. BRING ON FALL! I'm ready for cozy wraps, comfy sweaters, my most favourite skinny jeans and my UGGs! Fall is the yummiest season of all.

5. Second to my love of all-things-pumpkin, is all-things-PEPPERMINT! I can't wait for the CFA Peppermint Shakes. YUMMY.

6. Yep. Bethenny's Stuffed Peppers have also been added to the weekly menu. Two words: PINE NUTS.

7. Lauren got us hooked -- we can't get enough of Wheat Thins, cream cheese, and Habanero Pineapple Dip. A truly scrumptious snack. (P.S. This "Yummy Review" has quickly made me STARVING. Apparently I take the word "yummy" quite literally. Clearly I love all FOOD.)

8. I'm still enamoured with my Frye "Carson" Flats. In fact, I'm adding a new colour to my Christmas list.

9. What could be more apropos than closing out this little list with food -- yep, more food -- Dove Sea Salt Caramel Dark Chocolates. Though these have been eluding us at the store as of late (so tragic) -- when we do find them, we stock up! DIVINE.

Now, let's get this week started right -- bring on the YUMMY food. And comfy jammies and clothes. And FALL.

Have a blessed Sunday evening, Sweet Reader Friends!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

TLC's TV Shows...To The Nines...

Oh, how thankful I am for DVR systems. I remember, vividly, ELC programming TIVO to record our favourite shows -- we have VHS tapes upon VHS tapes of Full Houses, Murphy Browns and Designing Womens. We just LOVE "our shows!"

Here, now, are my Nine Favourite CURRENT TV shows (in no particular order):

1. General Hospital. Oh, yes. I'm still quite addicted -- the cRaZiEr it gets!

2. Grey's Anatomy. I haven't missed one season -- even one episode -- yet.

3. The Mindy Project. One of my new faves! Mindy Kaling cracks. me. up.

4a. Top Chef.

4b. Top Chef Masters. Curtis Stone. Need I say more?

5. MasterChef. ELC and My Sweet Dad got me hooked. I adore it.

6. The Voice. Can't get enough! How I wish I could have been a singer. I'm crossin' my fingers Little Leighton is our ticket to Nashville.

7. Breaking Bad. This is one I watch with My Hubby. It's one of the few shows we "agree" on. (ELC? Watched one with us several months ago. Key word here: ONE. All she could do. Doesn’t get it. Apparently doesn’t even intend to try!)

8. Dancing With the Stars. I'm signing Little Leighton up for dance lessons ASAP. Grammy ELC wishes there was a Grammy/Granddaughter tap class they could take together.

9a. Real Housewives. Yep. All of them. Well, except Miami. I couldn't get into that bunch.

9b. The Chew. My favourite "talk show."

9c. Duck Dynasty. Si. He is too darn funny. Love their “Family. Faith. Ducks.”

Ta-Ta for now, Lovely Readers! Off to catch up on my shows…

p.s.--Never fear! I'll be doing my Nine Favourite Yummies by Sunday...

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

ELC's Nine Favourite Yeehaws!

When TLC and I started this blog in January of 2011, we decided she would do “Yummies”—products, companies, books, movies—that she loved. And I would do “Yeehaws.” We always had the intention of doing two to three Yummies and/or Yeehaws per month. That didn’t/hasn’t always happen/happened. TLC has been much better at doing her Yummies than I’ve been with my Yeehaws. She kind of holds it over my head occasionally. Sigh.

Then there was the year-ish that we did “Yumhaws.” Those products, companies, books, movies, etc. that we BOTH liked/loved/adored. (TLC finally admitted she hated that mashed-up word I created and we officially ended Yumhaws in October of 2012. I’m not going to lie: I miss ‘em.)

In Honor of our “Month O’ Nines,” I suggested we each do our Nine Favourite Yummy/Yeehaws from the past (specifically the years 2011 and 2012)—those Yummies and Yeehaws that we still buy/use/obsess over/treasure.

Here, then, are mine:

1. I still love the Campus Quilt Company and Three Sisters’ Jewelry! Read these links so you can learn more about'll be glad you did. Pinky swear.

2. I still love to get my Ballard Designs catalogues! I make sure I have enough time to sit on our couch, or in my favourite chair in our bedroom, with a cup of coffee or a Diet Mountain Dew, and look at every single page.

3. I still love and use Garnier’s Skin Renew Dark Spot Concealer! Because I'm still oldish and still getting those attractive brown spots on my face. Yes. they're quite charming.

4. I still love and use Aveeno’s Ultra-Calming Daily Moisturizer! Because, along with the charming brown spots I get occasionally, I also get red blotches and bumps that need "calming." Ultra calming, of course.

5. I still love and use Revlon’s PhotoReady Makeup! Got a camera? Want a picture? I'm READY.

6. We all still NEED Girard’s Spinach Salad Dressing! Devine. Simply devine.

7. TLC and I still CRAVE Kroger’s Gourmet Mini Cinnamon Rolls! They go way beyond YUMMO. We just satisfied our need to these sinfully wonderful tiny rolls less than two weeks ago. And I can assure you: We want more. Like tomorrow.

8. Our new favourite Target sheets (since they discontinued the Springmaid brand) are Threshold Performance Sheets! Our Sweet Lauren has confirmed she and Her Sweet Hubby are also thrilled with these sheets. For the price? Choices of styles and colors? The fact that they wash and dry superbly? They ROCK. Big time.

9. TLC and I continue to cherish Kashi Oatmeal Dark Chocolate Cookies and Chocolate Almond Cookies! This was actually from a Yumhaw. Take that, TLC. Or, as I now call you: Yumhaw Destroyer.

I would also like to promise that, from October, 2013, forward, TLC and I will seriously attempt to be more dedicated to posting our Yummies and Yeehaws. Alas, we have often dropped the ball. (Especially a couple of months before Little Leighton arrived last year—and for a couple of months after her birth. We apparently lost energy and/or all interest in anything that was not Little Leighton related. We're confident you understand.)

Hope Y’all have a Wonderful Week wherever in the World Y’all are…

Friday, September 20, 2013

Books...To The Nines...

ELC has been reading to me since I was in the womb. I truly believe that's why I love books so very much. It was nearly impossible for us to come up with our Top Nine Favourites, but we gave it a shot!

Here, now, are mine:

1. The Twilight Series. Sparkly vampires. Need I say more?
2. The Mitford Series by Jan Karon. Charming. Heart-warming.
3. The Stephanie Plum Series by Janet Evanovich. Rip-roaring fun! The Grandma Mazur character was always my favourite.
4. Water for Elephants. A colorful tale of life among a traveling circus set in the 30s. (Purely coincidental that Robert Pattinson also stars in this movie-version.)
5. The Pioneer Woman: Black Heels to Tractor Wheels. Lovely. Lovely. Lovely. Who can resist a love story?
6. The Help. Life changing. I tell My Sweet Little Leighton that she is kind, smart and important.
7. To Kill A Mockingbird. A timeless read.
8. P.S. I Love You. Yes, I'm a complete sucker for a love story.
9. Eat, Pray, Love. ELC and I share an adoration of this book. We were captivated!

ELC's Top Nine Favourite Books:

I've loved books since I was knee-high to a grasshopper. (See Soul Food for a picture of me at 3 years old--"reading" a book.)

I would have no idea how many books I've read in approximately 56 years. I decided my criteria for picking my Top 9 was simple: Think of those books I couldn't put down. That made me cry my eyes out. Laugh out loud. Or that scared the bajeebies me. Or those that touched my heart. Books I recommended to friends, as in: "You MUST read this book."

I'm not necessarily putting these in order! 

1. The Nancy Drew books. Read at least 40. I would try to check them out at our public library. Or my school library. I'd beg friends to loan me theirs. I WAS Nancy Drew from the age of 8 until I was about 15. She had it all. Great Dad. Good looks. Courage. 
2. The Thorn Birds. Simply amazing. Breathtaking. Beyond mesmerizing. Need to read it again. Soon. 
3. Gone with the Wind. It's always been unbelievable to me--just how spectacular this book truly is...
4. The Joy Luck Club. Overwhelmingly depressing. I didn't just cry. I had an emotional breakdown. Probably couldn't read this one again. 
5. The Horse Whisperer. Superb. Read it before I saw the movie. I do that 97% of the time. If I hear a best-selling book will be made into a movie, I make every possible effort to read the book first. (Consequently, I don't often see these movies in a theatre. I usually have to watch it at home on our TV.)
6. The Kite Runner. Sooo tough to read. Violent. Full of despair. But still AMAZING. Another one I doubt I could read again.
7. Tuesdays with Morrie. I fell in love with Mitch Albom's touching true story of friendship and wisdom and have enjoyed reading his subsequent books. Important lessons for all of us.
8. The Shack. Excruciatingly hard to read. Gut-wrenching. Powerful. Challenges your beliefs.
9. Beach Music. This was my first Pat Conroy novel to read--as fast as I could. And my favourite. He intrigues me. He causes me to anxiously and impatiently wait for his next novel. 

Thank you, Lord God Almighty, for books.

Monday, September 16, 2013

TLC's Top Nine Favourite Stores

Confession: I love to shop. Power shopping. Shopping 'til I drop. Window shopping. I love it all. Especially during the holiday season when the stores are filled with twinkling lights and the comforting aromas of pumpkin, cinnamon, cranberry and balsam. YUM.

Here, now, are my Top Nine Favourite Stores (of all time):

1. One word: Nordstrom. Enough said.

2. Anthropologie. I love their unique clothes and fun "home goods." I could spend hours in this store.

3. Williams-Sonoma. My yearly "Christmas list" most always contains something from this splendid shop. (This year? A Le Creuset Round Dutch Oven -- 5 1/2 quarts -- in "Quince." Hint. Hint. Hint.)

4a. Pottery Barn. Delightful. Cozy. Classic.

4b. Pottery Barn Kids. Down-right charming!

5. Hobby Lobby. A crafty, creative store. It has the most extensive and beautiful selection of ribbon I've found. (And I L-O-V-E ribbon.)

6. World Market. When I walk in the door, I can't help but smile. Wine. Pretty flatware. Holiday decor. What more could you want?

7. Target. Oh, Target. Sigh.

8. Fossil. I'm obsessed with their jeans.

9. Bath and Body Works. I wait on pins and needles for their fall and holiday candles and soaps to arrive. And then I quickly stockpile "Leaves" and "Sweet Cinnamon Pumpkin" -- like it's going out of style.

(And I didn't even get to mention Papyrus, Sample House, Container Store {My dream job? Professional Organizer.} or my favourite grocery store: Market Street!)

Happy Monday, Lovely Readers!

Friday, September 13, 2013

ELC's Top Nine Favourite Places on Earth

I've been so lucky. I've been to many, many of our 50 States. Haven't counted lately. But would ballpark 35. I've been to some EXQUISITE places in Mexico. Victoria, British Columbia. Costa Rica.

I've never been, however, to England (where my maternal ancestors lived). Nowhere in Europe, actually. And, at this point in my life, most of my traveling days--to exotic, faraway destinations--may be over. Long story.
Here, now, are my nine favourite places on Earth (this was hard...I needed it to be at least nineteen!):

1. Our country casa. On our hill (we can see for thirty miles!). In North Central Texas. From the moment we found Our Personal Heaven 13 1/2 years ago, I've not had one minute where I didn't feel at peace the moment I drive up our road. I always say this is where my soul lives. It's My Truth. My Serenity.

2. TLC's home. Where Little Leighton grows and changes and laughs and learns and gets deeper and deeper into my heart.

3. Maui. My Sweet Hubby (MSH) and I have been beyond lucky to have visited Maui four times in 35 years. We aren't true "beach" peeps. But we ADORE Maui. Wish I was there right now...

4. New Mexico. Ruidoso. Santa Fe. Taos. Red River. Love them all. Seriously love them.

5. Colorado. Estes Park. Durango/Ouray. Heavenly. Pure Heaven.
6. Destin/Seaside, Florida. Yep--MSH and I are Mountain Lovers. Seriously. Cross my heart. First. But, after Maui, this area soothes our stress. GORGEOUS.

7. Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Fun. Charming. Laid back. Memorable. AWESOME.
8. Whitefish, Montana. Near Glacier National Park. The sheer SPLENDOR gives me shivers.

9. Fredericksburg, Texas. Oh, oh, OH. Love, love, LOVE.

So many AWESOME cities I couldn't list. Because of this "9" thing. New York. San Francisco. New Orleans.

Thank You, Lord God Almighty, for all of the amazing places I've explored! 

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Movies...To the Nines...

This was hard. TLC and I started talking about what might be our Top Nine All-Time Favourite Movies. Since I'm closer to 60 than I'd like to admit, it was super difficult for moi. SOOOOO many to choose from, you see.

Here now are TLC's Movies...To the Nines (all but one will be romantic's how she rolls):

1. You've Got Mail. (We've told y'all before and we'll tell you again--we don't even know how many times we've watched this movie. We adore it. Plain and Simple.)
2. When Harry Met Sally. (No, all Nine are not going to be Meg Ryan movies. But we also adore her. Yep. Yep, we do.)
3. Hope Floats. (Harry Connick, Jr. Need she say more?)
4. My Big Fat Greek Wedding. (One of her favourite parts? How the FUNNY Dad uses Windex for everything. EVERYTHING. Not just cleaning. Reminds her of Her Sweet Dad--HSD.)
5. It's Complicated. (She loved Meryl Streep's home and the bakery she owned. LOVED.)
6. The Princess Bride. (Funny. Charming. Romantic. Silly. A fairy tale we can all get lost in.)
7. The Holiday. (Because if a movie takes place at Christmas, well, TLC is hooked.)
8. Father of the Bride. (Because if a movie is about brides, well, TLC know...hooked.)
9. Christmas Vacation. (A tradition for TLC and HSD. She can recite every single line. It's not fun for ELC--who'd truly rather eat dirt than watch this movie.)

TLC is stressed. This list does not include any Reese Witherspoon gems. Oops. I'm now being required to do a 9B. Crazy Stupid Love. (Emma Stone? Ryan Gosling? Steve Carrell? Seriously fabulous, TLC reports.)

And, now, Silly Friends...ELC's Movies...To the Nines:

1. You've Got Mail. (See above!)
2. Dances With Wolves. (Amazing.)
3. The Alamo. (John Wayne. I live in Texas. Nuff said.)
4. Legends of the Fall. (Spell-binding.)
5. Terms of Endearment. (Makes me cry just typing this.)
6. Last of the Mohicans. (Daniel Day Lewis. Wow.)
7. E.T. (You really should PHONE HOME.)
8. Star Wars. (1977. Unforgettable.)
9. When Harry Met Sally. (See above!)

TLC thinks mine are "too heavy." And that she looks like a fluffy-headed, boy-crazy fool. Her words.

We are certain there will be a follow-up to this category of the "Nines." We've got many more to list.

Gotta scoot...we're both craving some popcorn (with Raisinettes and/or M&Ms dumped in it) and a Diet Coke...

Ciao for Now...

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

September--To The Ninth...

Sooo…it’s our first “9” post! TLC and I are doing this together.

Our process: We each came up with five things we adore about September. Then compared. Two were the same…here with go: 

  1. It’s ELC’s anniversary month! My Sweet Hubby and I were married 35 years ago in Dublin, Texas. We picked Labor Day weekend so that we could have a long one. (We were going to Hawaii in October for a delayed honeymoon.) I’m so proud to be married to him. He is a jewel/keeper/treasure.

  1. ELC says it’s kind of like another “January 1st.” Because of the beginning of the school year—whether pre-school up to college—it feels like a time to start anew (even if you've been out of college for 37 years).
  1. TLC loves the warm colours everywhere—chocolates, oranges, reds, golds—in everything—clothes, home accessories, seasonal decorations—the leaves!
  1. Both of us love the beginning of the new television shows! And the return of our favourites (Grey’s, Scandal, The Mindy Project, Modern Family, etc.).
  1. TLC loves the return of the Pumpkin Spice Lattes at Starbucks. (Sorry. ELC tried to prevent a pumpkin reference. I can minimize, but it’s going to be impossible to completely eliminate. TLC would go into some kind of serious shock.)
  1. SAPPHIRES! September’s birthstone. There is not a more elegant, classy, sophisticated, stunning stone. (This was one big perk of ELC being married in September. She adopted it as her Jewel of Choice.) 
  1. TLC loves to start wearing boots! (Even though in Texas it’s still hotter than Hades until sometimes December!)
  1. ELC and TLC both love the beginning (will happen at least by the third week of September) of cooler nights and mornings. “Crisp” becomes our Word of the Day.
  1. Both of us begin burning our Fall/Autumn candles—loaded with cinnamon and spices!
We hope this September is FULL of SWEET SPLENDOR for y’all…