My Secret Zombie Love Affair {and Brad Pitt ain't bad either}

Mindless Thursdays 

(This post still counts as DIY because I'm demonstrating a great way to store your yard tools, right?)

I am almost embarrassed to tell you, but I have a thing for Zombie movies.  It must have started when I was young and my dad watched all kinds of scary stuff.  As kids we would sneak into the hallway and crouch down where we had a view of the tv, but our parents couldn't see us.  Watching scary movies on the sly.  :)  As we got older it was a right of passage to be able to watch a scary movie without hiding your face.  I was always saying to new friends, "I like watching scary movies, do you?"

And if they really liked scary movies then we had an instant connection.

When I was in Junior High School one of my friends had a birthday sleep over and we watched Christine, Carrie, and Kujo among other scary movies all night.  At dawn the next morning we picked up the birthday girl in her sleeping bag and carried her out to the yard so she would wake up all disoriented and scared.  She woke up while we were carrying her and became a kicking, screaming beast inside of that sleeping bag, wondering what on earth we had planned for her!  I wonder what the next door neighbors thought!?

Some of my favorite Zombie shows have been 28 days later, I Am Legend, The Walking Dead Series, and more recently the quircky, laugh-on-the-inside, heart warming movie (can you say that about a zombie movie?), Warm Bodies.  And now, finally World War Z,  with Brad Pitt.

I remember seeing the previews for World War Z awhile back and looking over at my husband in the darkened theater, with my eyebrows raised for emphasis, and a glint in my eyes, saying  "MmmmHmmm, Honey, we are definitely going to see that movie!"

I fell in love with Brad Pitt way back when he played the handsome, young, dimpled cowboy named JD that Thelma stumbled into on Thelma and Louise.  He definitely left a lasting impression on Thelma (and on me).  

Brad as JD in Thelma and Louise.

I thoroughly enjoyed watching him in World War Z. It was a bona fide zombie movie with senseless zombies who had no traces of humanity left in them, bent only on feeding on the remaining humans.  That's what you want in a zombie movie, right?  But it also had a geo-political slant about how differing countries would react when faced with a world-wide pandemic.  Brad played a middle-aged father and husband, a retired UN hotshot, that was left with no choice but to leave his family and pursue a solution for stopping the uber-rapid zombie invasion before all humanity was lost.  

Good Creepy Stuff!!!

And if zombies invade my little town I know exactly which neighbor's yard I'm running to for preferred Zombie weapons!

I wonder if any of the other neighbors have a chain saw...

Happy Thursday Friends!
Take pride in your humanity ;)


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Trottole with Asparagus and Ham {Poor Man's Version}

Sometimes life takes us on some wild and crazy rides and we have no choice but to take it as it comes, hold on tight, and make the best of the ride.  There have been a lot of changes around our house lately and some challenges too.  When life gets crazy like this it's easy to get out of the habit of making a really good, satisfying meal to share with the family and instead just throwing something cheap and fast together to eat on the run.  Usually those meals aren't very healthy or satisfying.

I was drawn to this dish because of how amazingly simple it is to make...and it's Italian...and it has asparagus...and olive oil...and it's a one dish kinda meal (I really like those kind!).  PERFECTO!

So simple to make you won't believe how deliciously satisfying this is!

1 lb. Trottole Pasta
1 lb. asparagus cut in to pieces about 1.5 inches long
1/4 to 1/2 lb. thin sliced deli ham ~ Prosciutto would normally be used but this is the poor man's version ;)
2-3 medium ripe tomatoes sliced into thin wedges
1/2 cup olive oil (I use 'rich in flavor' EVOO)
2 T. lemon juice (mine came right out of that cute little lemon shaped bottle)
3 T. fresh basil chopped
Lemon Pepper
Parmesan Cheese to taste

  • Cook Trottole Pasta according to package directions.
  • While pasta is cooking saute asparagus on medium high heat in 2 T. EVOO for a couple of minutes max.
  • Tear ham into bite sized pieces and throw in with asparagus for one minute to bring out it's flavor.
  • Add asparagus, ham, tomatoes, basil, remaining olive oil, lemon juice and lemon pepper to drained pasta and toss to blend.
  • Add parmesan to Trottone and serve in shallow pasta bowls.  

Buon appetito!

This was our first time trying this dish and as we finished eating my man exclaimed "That was one darn good meal!"  The little man dished up his own but left out all of the asparagus, tomatoes and ham.  All the good stuff, am I wrong???  I asked him to give it a try with more than just pasta and he did.  "I really like it!" he proclaimed when he was done with his second helping ( this time he included all the ingredients except the tomatoes.  Choose your battles wisely, right?).

These past few weeks have been extremely challenging.  I've been job hunting and dealing with some medical issues that needed dealing.  All around it's just been a crazy, hectic, unsure time and it was wonderful to share this delicious meal with my family and now you.  I hope you give it a try!

Whatever challenges you may be facing lately, I hope you are still able to enjoy the little pleasures found in everyday life...

With Love,

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Hanging Out on the Summer Porch ~ A Painted Icebox Story

This old icebox was passed on to us years ago and it's played many roles in our home...
*tv cabinet
*end table
*bedside table
*and most recently it hung out on our back deck for the summer.

But I switched the big bench from the front porch to the back deck and so this icebox and folding chairs ended up here on the front porch.  The big bench is heavy and so it's a stay put kinda guy and these lightweight chairs are easily moved wherever the shade is.  I like having the option of moving my chair to a better spot if I want to!    

But this poor old icebox really has seen better days, don't you think?  The weather from last summer really did a number on the finish.  And although this piece is cute ~ it's clearly a "fake" icebox and so it's not going to win any restoration awards for me.  So I figured I'd have some fun with it and paint it a happy color to liven up the front porch area.

Ace Hardware had their big Grand Opening Celebration last weekend and I got this sample quart of paint for free there.

I was going to go with a cheerful yellow (by popular vote on facebook) but the hubby voted 'NO' on yellow and well, his vote made all the difference since he also has to live with it.  Sorry to all of you yellow voters out there!!!  Quite honestly I was surprised that he picked this color out of the three choices I showed him.  

I thought for sure he'd choose the green or yellow first.

I sanded the old finish off with a sanding sponge before giving it a new coat of paint.  I didn't use a separate primer just two coats of Clark + Kensington Paint + Primer In One in 'Stepping Out'.  :)

Very nice paint with great coverage, btw.

We love our little front porch with our Family Established Porch Sign

And the gorgeous hanging basket we purchased from the High School Baseball Fundraiser.  Best idea for a fundraiser EVER in my opinion.  I love my hanging flower baskets!!!

Just a few details to make this space feel really welcoming and CHEERFUL.
  • Icebox Drink Table in a fresh new color
  • Some fun floral pillows
  • A sweet Dahlia in a vase (fake)
  • Some ferns on tree stump end tables (soon to be painted stumps, I think!)
  • A soft apple green rug

It didn't take Sadie long to realize there was a nice soft rug here.

I think she approves of the new porch makeover...

...especially the soft place to lounge.

Sadie says it's perfect for chilling on a lazy summer day.

Oh, what color do you think I should paint those stumps?  White or gold or some combination of both?  I can't promise you Scott won't trump the popular vote but I would still love to hear what you think!

Thanks for stopping by today to see what we've been up to.
Enjoy the Summer sunshine and stop to smell the flowers from time to time  :)

I know I will!


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DIY Mini Terrarium ~ Beach Inspired with Air Plant (Tillandsia)

I saw an article about Artemisia, a DIY Terrarium Store in Portland, Oregon, and I could barely wait to go check it out for myself.  My sister and I were able to go about a week ago and it was AMAZING!
I will share pictures of the store and all the treasures they have to offer later but I wanted to show you the mini terrarium I was inspired to make after visiting Artemisia.

I picked up this tiny little Air Plant.  It's also known as Tillandsia or Tilly.  They don't require dirt of any kind and only need to be dunked in water about once every two weeks.  If you are in the Portland area you can visit Artemisia for Air Plants and other Terrarium products.  Amy at Artemisia was the sweetest, most helpful she could be!  For more info and care of Air Plants or to order your own online check out Airplantcity.

I love plants and nature but I'm not the most vigilant about watering, soooo, a plant that requires minimal care is definitely a plus around my house.  And one that only needs water every other week?  NICE!

I was preparing to meet one of my wonderful blog friends for the first time, and I knew she loves the beach, so I decided to throw together this mini beach terrarium with the little air plant and a few other things:
  • CLEAN SAND ~ no salty beach sand allowed...the plant would not appreciate the salt
  • VIBRANT BLUE MOSS ~ This piece I picked up at Artemisia 
  • DRIFTWOOD ~ from my beach stash 
  • SHELL ~ also from my beach stash
  • JEWELS ~ I bought a bag of 'itty bitty bling' at Artemisia
  • MINI GLASS TERRARIUM ~ is actually a stemless wine goblet I stole from my personal collection (one can never have too many wine goblets!)

I put a decent amount of sand into the goblet and added the air plant...tucking it's long root into the sand to hold it in place.  Then I just placed the other beachy components randomly wherever I thought they looked good. That's the fun part of making a terrarium...you get to play with the pieces and make it exactly like you want it.  Then if you change your mind you can move things around again...

Sounds like my kind of hobby :)

I couldn't resist adding the 'itty bitty bling' jewels.  Everybody needs a bit of bling, right!?

Then I tucked it into one of my Farmers' Market Baskets with some raffia and another little surprise...

The silver starfish is actually a magnetic brooch ~ you don't have to poke holes in your clothing.  So smart.

I rushed off to meet my friend Meegan of What Meegan Makes for the first time with my little gift in hand.  I was so excited to meet her I locked my darn keys in my car and was forced to pay an exorbitant amount of money to get them sprung free.  She was worth it!  We had the best time together; laughing and sharing stories and talking about everything blogging.  Good Times!  I was so happy to see her delighted with her little beach terrarium.  Is it any surprise that she came carrying a gift for me as well?  Please go say HI to her at WhatMeeganMakes and tell her I sent ya!  I think you'll love her just as much as I do.  :)

Meegan in pink and me in black and white.  Love her!  

What a great day (even if I did get robbed by a greasy locksmith who was bent on taking advantage of my desperate situation.  Jerk!)

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