A Place For Everything and Everything In Its Place, and Thanksgiving Thoughts

“A Place For Everything and Everything In Its Place”, that is a mantra I have lived by my entire life. Growing up I always thought Mary Poppins was simply the bee’s knees.  She was prim, proper, composed, always knew just what to say, how to organize, how to get children to keep a tidy home and listen. She was the golden goose, everything I wanted to be.  And I was.  I grew up to be a wonderful nanny, with some of the most wonderful children in my care, and many of the families would lovingly say I was like the wonderful Miss Poppins. In my opinion that was the highest compliment. I may have moved on in life from being a nanny,  (went to culinary school and beyond) but the need for order and placement is one I have never left behind.

You might not think it by my love for pinning holiday things, but sometimes the holidays can be frustrating for me. The weeks leading up to them mean a plethora of excess in the house,gifts, foods, decorations, etc; and finding places to put all this “stuff” can be taxing. The gifts I usually put aside in the spare room where I don’t have to see it, but the food items for the big dinners, there is no avoiding seeing THAT.  The past few days I have really been struggling, my anal retentive Poppins has kicked into high gear.  I look in the kitchen, in the fridge, and I just see STUFF, and I want to tear apart the fridge and reorganize it because there  MUST be a way to make it prettier, more organized, neater, roomier, etc; except there isn’t. The fridge is stuffed to the max and there is nothing I can do about it.  I was standing there staring at it when it hit me….. WOW, that a blessing this is, how lucky we are!!! There are so many people around the country, the world, who don’t even have a fridge, let alone one so full they can’t shove anything else in it, and ours is maxed out! Our fridge is SO full we can’t fit one more thing in it. WOW, that is wonderful, I truly am blessed beyond measure.

And just like that my entire attitude and outlook changed.  I went from being upset, frustrated and irritated; to being humbled,  appreciative and thankful.  Thankful for my husband who worked all weekend, up eat day off at 3 am to be at work by 4, thankful for the food in that fridge, and the ability to get it all and still pay our bills, have a beautiful home, and love in our lives each day. Thankful for this “mess” of a spare room because we have bought so many gifts for our family and loved ones that we literally have run out of room to store it.  (In all fairness I start the holiday shopping around um, June, July, sometimes May if I see something great)

So, if you find yourself getting upset this Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, or Christmas, take a moment and remember….

  • There are people with no family to sit at a table and spend time together, or argue with, or get annoyed by.
  • If Aunt Zelda makes a gross side dish, remember to look around and realize that not only did she love you enough to put her hard work and effort into it, but there is a table full of food around you, what a blessing!!!!
  • If the house gets overheated with all the hot air flying around, be thankful you have heat and a roof over your head.
  • If the plethora of gifts you are giving takes over every spare and hidden nook and cranny in your home, be thankful you are able to buy such beautiful, wonderful and special gifts for others, how fortunate you are!!
  • If you are chosing to not cook and are ordering your dinner or going out to eat, think about the sacrifice those cooks and chefs are making to make YOU a MEAL!!! They are giving up their time with their loved ones so that you can not cook for yours, THAT is luxury!!
  • If like me, you look at your fridge and want to teat the entire thing apart, stop and take a look, and realize just how blessed you are to have that overstuffed, nothing in its place, everything mixed up fridge that makes you want to tear your hair out.

AND….just to REALLY put my uncomfortable self out there… here is a picture of my “god awful” fridge. I am so embarrassed, but I am doing it anyway! Do not judge my fridge. I am using some shortcuts this year (premade pie crust, DO NOT JUDGE) simply because I am exhausted, like really tired and not feeling well. But I AM making Thanksgiving dinner!!  Also, darn tootin that’s “regular” martin’s potato bread, what else would I eat leftover sandwiches on?!?!  I eat organic yogurt, but I love my Philly cream cheese. And Chris goes through an obsene amount of half and half. BEHIND the coffee mug with Riley on the front is indeed organic juice, AND Ronnybrook Milk, as there is Ronnybrook Eggnog on the lower shelf.  And all those egg crates are full of eggs from backyard chickens!

My terrible fridge, please do not judge

My terrible fridge, please do not judge

Happy Thanksgiving, from my home to yours. 🙂

I’m having a baby!!

Yep, you read that right, I’m prego!! (Hence that shotgun wedding two weeks ago)
I just realized I never exactly made the big announcement here on the blog, so here ya go! I am due in the Spring and we will be finding out if it is a boy or girl. I will NOT be turning this into a baby blog though, have no fear. That is actually what The Reality of Bebe is for. More on that later. But for now, I just wanted to keep you in the know. I am so overjoyed, I really couldn’t be more excited than I am right now! ❤ 🙂

Turn off the movie, put down the electronics, and open a window for once!

My disdain for “life today” is no secret. I look around me and see children with absolutely no patience at all, who interrupt their parents, can’t sit still for a minute, and need a constant barrage of electronic eyeball stimulation to keep them entertained. STOP THE INSANITY!!!!!!!!!!! This is ridiculous! And we have no one to blame but ourselves. When I drive the car, I don’t actually play music, I enjoy the silence. At home when I am alone, I don’t have TV or music on, I enjoy the silence, and when I garden, I don’t wear an iPod, I enjoy the sounds of nature.  This isn’t rocket science or a new way of thinking, this is old school living at it’s finest!

We constantly wonder why our children have this crazy need to be constantly entertained??? WE did it do them!! From the moment they are born they are bombarded with sing song DVDs and in car “Baby Genius” CD’s to “entertain” them and “keep them quiet”, how about when it’s nice out we just drive the car and put the window down so they can feel a nice breeze and look out the window?  How about from the moment we bring the baby home we DON’T get in it’s face 24/7 with toys that make sounds and sing and have disco like flashing lights? How about we allow children to just be, and explore their own minds and the environment around them???  We don’t nee to give them an activity every minute of the day unless we train them into thinking they NEED it every minute of the day. Which they don’t!

If a child is born into a family, and isn’t trained into thinking it needs to watch a “movie” for a 20 minute ride to the grocery store, then the child can’t pitch a fit when it doesn’t get to watch a movie!!! And really, who needs a movie for a 20 minute ride? That is ridiculous!! We all grew up without movies in the car, and we did just fine! We played thigns like “Hangman” and count the color cars, find the staet license plate, and slapped our slap bands on our wrists, and made signs about selling out parents and then stuck them in the window. Look at us now, we are just fine!!  And what happens when the child grows up and catch watch the movie because they have to learn to drive???? What kind of monster will they turn into then?!

Now that I’ve calmed down…. what’s your thoughts on this?

Gourmet Weekdays Cookbook Giveaway, just because!

Hey there! How are ya? Guess what? I’m giving away a cookbook.

Long story short, I bought two by mistake, so you benefit, yay!  I picked this up because I have always loved Gourmet, they consistently do simple and delicious; and I like that.

Cookbook Giveaway

Cookbook Giveaway

A little about the cookbook, from amazon.com “Sometimes the easiest way to cook something is also the best. From the hundreds of effortless dishes published in Gourmet over the years, the editors selected the best-loved, the most memorably simple, and the riotously tasty—the ones that have entered their personal repertoires. They include vegetarian mains like Black Bean Burgers; seafood dishes that are ready in minutes, such as Seared Scallops with Tarragon-Butter Sauce; quick-cooking favorites like Deviled Chicken Drumsticks; and for dessert, Chocolate Fallen Soufflé Cake.    All of the recipes come with cooking times, and menus are included.”

Entering the contest is simple:

Just leave a comment below telling me what YOUR go to easy peasy weeknight dinner is.  It’s as simple as that!  Of course, you can earn a few more entries too!

For additional entries: (leave a comment for each one you do)

  • For a 2rd entry to win, go and “like”  Burlap and Butter Knives on Facebook
  • For a 3rd entry to win, sign up to get  Burlap and Butter Knives delivered to your inbox, over there on the right hand side of the page where is says “Subscribe to Burlap and Butter Knives”  🙂
  • For a 3rd and final chance, follow  BurlapandButter on Twitter
  • Remember to leave a comment for each thing you do!

This contest is open to US residents only, and will be open from Thursday, November 7th, 2013 until Friday, November 22nd (the day after my birthday) 2013 11:59pm.  I will use random.org to select one winner.  Winner will be notified by Monday November, 25th 2013 and will have 3 days to respond, if no response is received, a new winner will be chosen.  All opinions and reviews are 100% my own. I bought this book myself with my money, and I am shipping it with my money. This giveaway is in no way shape or form affiliated with Gourmet Magazine, they don’t even know I exist, not yet at least 😉