Apple Fest 2016 – Part 1

Every year I attend a local park’s Apple Fest.  I took Tanya with the boys the first time I attended the fest.  The boys were 15 months old and 3 years old.  I remember that’s the weekend the Wee One stopped nursing and the Imaginative One declared he wore underwear because he wanted to start potty training. Continue reading Apple Fest 2016 – Part 1

The Time I was Rick Rolled (Before Rick Rolling was a Thing)

When I was about 13 or 14 years old, I got money for a Christmas or my birthday.  I can’t remember why I got the money.  So I decided to buy George Michael’s Faith album.  I had liked George Michael since his days with Wham!  My favorite song when I was my youngest son’s age was “Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go.”

On the Faith album, there was a song called “I want Your Sex.”  I was so naive so I didn’t think anything of that song.  Well, soon after I bought the album the tape in the cassette tape decided to break.  We went back to return the tape.

Grandma had not seen the tape when I bought it but when we got to the store she had seen the names of the songs.  Boy was she mad at me.  I was not suppose to be listening to songs about sex at my young age.

I was not allowed to buy another Faith album.  I was allowed to return it and get a different album by a different artist.

So what did I get instead?  I ended up with Rick Astley’s “Whenever You Need Somebody.”  I can remember opening that cassette tape and my grandpa playing it on the radio of his Astro Van.

I was Rick Rolled by my grandma.  To be honest, I liked the album at that point in my life.

I think the Faith album was the first album I ever bought.  If my boys bought something like that I would be so upset.  It was not an appropriate album for my age.

This was the time I was Rick Rolled.

Let’s connect on social media:

Instagram – @Believeinthemagictraci
Facebook – @imhungry15
Pinterest – @imhungry75
Yummly

I hope you have a great day.  Thanks for reading my blog post.  

Happy eating,
Traci

Dear Tanya (9/13/16)

Dearest Tanya,

Since I can’t call you, I’ve decided to write you another letter.

Did you see the Celebration we held for you?  So many of our Rainbow friends came to remember you.  Did you see that Amy got us a cake with the picture of you and I on it?  Family came to the Celebration even our family from Pittsburgh.  Mr. and Rev. B.even came.  Jamie decided Mr. B. looks like the E Harmony man.  Too funny!

Did you hear us singing to you and see the purple balloons we released in your memory?  Doug came from Nashville for the Celebration.  He decided that he was going to release his balloon first.  You probably got a big laugh about it from Heaven.  Todd decided he was going to take the string off first and then release his balloon.  He ended up releasing his balloon last.

Cindy from church gave a beautiful frame that says sisters on it.  I’ve placed it on my desk at work.  My students have said we looked like twins.  Can you believe that?  Do you remember the year mom had us get the same haircut.  Then for picture day she dressed you and I up in green turtlenecks.  We really looked like twins.

Today I’m extra sad.  Do you remember my student who drowned back in 2009?  It would have been his 26th birthday today.  His mom reached out to me when she heard the news that you had gone on to Heaven.  I got to talk to the mother of another young man who was touched by the news.  Anthony is still broken up about Renier’s death just like me.  It’s been 7 years but I am still heartbroken over the news.

On Saturday after the rain, Todd and I decided we were going to chase the sunset.  We got up to the Huffman Interpretive Center 10 minutes prior to it closing.  I captured a gorgeous shot of the sunset.  However what was more impressive was the small little rainbow to the west.  Was that you letting me know that you are okay?  Please tell me that it was you.

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I miss you so much!  I miss being able to call you so I could annoy you with stupid details of my life.  I miss asking you to go on adventures with us.

Until next time!

Your annoying big sister,

Traci

P.S. I still think Jon Knight is the best New Kid on the Block.  Yes, I know he’s gay but when we were still teens he had not come out of the closet.

Whenever I hear “Step by Step,” I’ll think of you.

Cajun Chicken Pasta – Secret Recipe Club (September 2016)

A year ago, I made the decision to restart using my blog.  It’s been a roller coaster year but I am glad I made that decision.

 

#Secret Recipe Club

Every month, I’m assigned another blog to check out.  After checking out their blog, I’m to find a recipe to make, photograph, and then post.  Since I’m in group B of the secret recipe club, I post my Secret Recipe Club on the second Monday of each month.  

This month I’ve been assigned to Lemon and Cheese.  Nicola is a librarian in London.  She enjoys lemon and cheese hence the name of her blog.  

Nicola has a list of books that are related to cooking.  The list contains both fiction and nonfiction books.  So if you want to read a book related to food or cooking, check out her list.

The Recipe that I Choose

I enjoyed looking through Nicola’s blog.  I finally decided on a Cajun chicken pasta dish.   My mom is currently staying with me so I’m trying to find dinners that everyone will enjoy.  While I was cooking up the chicken, she was cutting up the bell peppers and onions.for me.  The Imaginative One only wanted to eat the plain pasta and the Wee One wanted to eat only the chicken.  The three adults in my family ate and loved the dish.

I made a few small adaptations from the recipes.  I added some cheddar cheese to the dish before serving it.  Since my mom was helping with cutting the veggies, I had her dice the onions and peppers instead of cutting them into slices.  I also left the second pepper out because Hubby is not a big bell pepper fan.

Thank you Nicola for a great recipe!

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Doesn’t this chicken look delicious? The Wee One certainly thought so when he kept stealing pieces of the chicken.

Cajun Chicken Pasta

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Stars of the recipe:

  • 2 large chicken breasts, cubed
  • 2 Tbsp. Cajun seasoning
  • 1 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 (15 oz) can of diced tomatoes
  • 2 oz. cream cheese
  • 1 box small pasta
  • 1/4 c. shredded cheddar cheese

Steps:

  1. Place the chicken in a medium bowl.  Sprinkle with 1 Tbsp. of the Cajun seasoning.  Toss the chicken to coat.
  2. Bring a pot of water to a boil.  Cook the pasta as directed on the box.
  3. Meanwhile, heat the pan over medium heat.  Add the oil.
  4. Saute’ the chicken until lightly browned and cooked through.  Set the chicken asie.
  5. Add the onions and peppers to the the pan.  Cook for 5 minutes.  Set the onions and peppers aside.
  6. Turn down the heat to medium low.  Add the tomatoes, 1 Tbsp. Cajun seasoning, and the cream cheese cut into smaller pieces.
  7. Stir the sauce until the cream cheese has melted into the tomatoes and had created a creamy sauce.
  8. Add the chicken and veggies back into the pan.  Stir until combined.
  9. Add the pasta into the sauce.  Stir until combined.  Top with shredded cheddar cheese.
  10. Serve!

 Other Recipes

Other recipes that I found interesting on Nicola’s blog.

Oatmeal Brownie Bars

Chocolate Mug Cake

White Bean, Mint, and Lemon Dip

Zesty Macaroni Salad

Mediterranean Pasta Salad

For more Secret Recipe Club recipes, click on the blue frog.

Let’s connect on social media:

Instagram – @Believeinthemagictraci
Facebook – @imhungry15
Pinterest – @imhungry75
Yummly

I hope you have a great day.  Thanks for reading my blog post.  

Happy eating,
Traci

This post has also been linked up to Miz Helen’s Full Plate Thursday.

My 9/11 Story

It was a Tuesday morning. I had just finished teaching at the middle school and was on the way to Westbrooke Village Elementary School (WBV).

I was listening to Mix 107.7.  After I turned on Olive Road, I heard the news. At first I thought it was a joke but then I realized it was the truth just as I was passing a Baptist Church about 3 minutes from WBV.  

Once I entered WBV and went to the classroom I was going to be working in, I informed the teacher what had occurred.  We turned on the tv’s in the classroom.  The fourth graders didn’t pay attention. Meanwhile the adults realized life was changing. I can remember that at one point, one of the adults said “That’s not New York City. That’s Washington D.C.”

When it was time for me to go back to my room. I was going to be putting the radio on but was informed not to do that. We were told not to let the students hear what was going on.  There was no outdoor recess on that September day.  Fortunately we were able to tell the children, the playground equipment was being worked on because at that time they were fixing the playground.

Later in the evening, I was supposed to go eat dinner with my grandparents and then spend the night at my mom’s house. I had brought baked mac and cheese to share with my grandparents. So I went over there and ate with them. As I was going to leave, we heard the sonic boom from them clearing the air space for Air Force 1. In a panic, I made a decision to spend the night with them. I remember sleeping on their blue couch and being tucked in by my grandma. I was 26 years old but I that night I needed to feel safe and secure.

Whenever I think of 9/11, memories flood into my mind and tears roll down my face. It’s truly a moment in time that changed my life. I will never forget.

I live by one of the biggest Air Force Bases in the nation.  I can remember for months afterwards the lines at the Air Force gates.  Security was amped up in my area.

Tanya refused to come over to my house because she was afraid of the base being bombed.  You could see the base from one of my windows in my townhouse.

 

It was a scary time in American history.

I’ll never FORGET!

What’s your 9/11 story?