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PoG Blog

Happy Harvest!!!

We had a fantastic time with Shelley, David and Caroline yesterday!!! We began with makeup and hair for the girls. Caroline and Darby decided many months ago they were going to be the sweet bff team of "Shake it Up" Darby was Rocky and Caroline was Cece. This is a sweet Disney show of two girls living out dreams plus the ups and downs of being a teenager.

The pressure was on... I had to do hair and makeup while Shelley was preparing a delicious Harvest Stew!!! Yummy!!!!!! The girls looked so much older with makeup and hair done (bittersweet)...They were ready to eat and then get started on having some "shake it up" fun.
And Shelley never disappoints... the Brunswick stew and mexican cornbread was FABULOUS... however, the girls were now uninterested in eating... "Let's go Mom!!" So out the door they went!!!

Here is a few shots of our finished product - Rocky and Cece of "Shake it Up".

They walked a little from house to house and then we all got in the car with the back trunk open and drove around the subdivision. What a blast!!!!

Since we are doing the baby's nursery in a Toy Story theme, we had to get a picture of "Jessie" from Toy Story. She was giving out candy - so cute!!!

After a few hours and a whole bunch of fun we came to Shelley's, the girls counted their stash and then we made smores by the fire pit... a tremendous time with dear friends and cherished fellowship!! Thanks again to Shelley and David - the best hostess EVER!!!

Hope you all had a great time with your family as well!

Blesssings, leigh

Shelley Says...

Autumn Brunswick Stew

Fall is officially upon us here in middle Tennessee. We got off the bus this morning at 7am and it was QUITE BRISK to say the least - quite a change from the sunny and 70 degrees we enjoyed yesterday in Florida. We sang at a church in Fruitland Park, Florida called New Life. They were some of the sweetest and most giving people in the world! We loved being there - and we were so excited to get over 20 kids sponsored for Compassion!! Thank you to all of you who took home a sweet child to sponsor.

Now, on to food. It always goes back to food doesn't it…

Once a year, always in the fall, I make what is probably my favorite homemade soup. I have been making it since 2006 when I found the recipe in Paula Deen's magazine…I carefully save the recipe each year, tucking it back in my recipe box… and I always have a little fear that when I go to get it it will be gone…

This takes a little extra work because you have to cook and shred a Boston butt roast before you get started…. but it makes a huge pot. I'm going to make it for Halloween night. The Cappillinos are coming over to trick or treat, and I know I can count on Dana to make a good dent in it -

Leigh is very very very pregnant at this point, so I'm sure she will enjoy no cooking! :0)
The girls are going to dress up as Rocky and CeCe from Disney's "Shake it Up", and they have had their costumes for months now…

If you make this - let me know how it turns out!!

Enjoy-

Autumn Brunswick Stew

3 large split chicken breasts
2 1/2 quarts of water
3 medium potatoes, peeled and coarsely chopped
1 large onion
1/2 cup chopped celery
1 (4 pd.) Boston butt roast, cooked and shredded
2 (15.25ounce) cans white corn, drained
2 (14.75ounce) cans creamed corn
1- 28oz. can crushed tomatoes
1- 26oz bottle of ketchup
1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
1/2 stick of butter
2 tablespoons of liquid smoke
2 tsp. of hot sauce or to taste

In a large Dutch oven, combine chicken breasts and water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat; cover, reduce heat, and simmer 35 to 40 minutes, or until chicken is tender.
Remove chicken, reserving broth in a pan. Let chicken cool slightly. Discard bones and skin; cut chicken into bite-size pieces, set aside.
Add potatoes, onion, and celery to reserved broth. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat; reduce heat and simmer, uncovered 25 to 30 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. Stir in chicken, roast, and remaining ingredients. Simmer, uncovered, one hour.

This soup is even better the next day!! I always make it a day ahead then reheat.
Also, it's really good served with Mexican Cornbread. Just sayin'…

Happy Monday!
Shelley

It's Friday

Hey Everyone, what a week of festivities...

POG returned home Friday evening from Mackinac Island. We had a great time but I must admit, I spent most of the weekend resting from exhaustion. We only have about 3 weeks left before Baby Andy arrives (Lord willing).

Our church hosted our annual Women's Ministry Dinner on Tuesday and our guest speaker was Kelly Minter. She and I have so many mutual friends but we have never met. My friend Peggy and Dierdre invited me to sit at their table. Do you like these types of events? Each table is decorated with a theme and I walked around taking pictures of some very creative tables. Here is a few...( Peggy's table was "Breast Cancer Awareness" - the pumpkins were even pink!!).

Dana Tucker did this table. She is extremely talented. She collects old cheese graters and she sat them on top of candles... Dana told me that this was just some stuff laying around her house (a lazy susan, a round mirror, some rope, a cake pedestal, oh yeah, and some chenille pumpkins and wire basket) and "WHAALA" - a beautiful rustic center piece. These are the people to hang around!!

I loved this world theme idea... making a difference around the world. GREAT JOB LADIES!!!

Kelly's message was fabulous too -" A Heart That Can Break". It was from the book of Nehemiah - I took away some great "nuggets". Here were some of my favorites Kelly shared:

1. "The depth of your compassion will always be measured by your actions."
2. "Compassion will make notable sacrifices."
3. "Compassion will help us work out our fears."
4. "Compassion will cause you to commit to this process (weathering the storm)."

I hope these bless you today!!!

On a much lighter note. My husband Dana submitted a jingle that Darby and her cousin Leila and friend Meg wrote back this summer. It was a jingle for Webkinz. Darby and her friends are obsessed with them... would you believe, Dana got an email yesterday from the Webkinz headquarters and they loved the jingle so much, it is now on there Webkinz site. We are so proud off our little writers!! I wished I had taken video footage of Darby's excitement when Dana told her - PRICELESS!!!

People, it's the little things that drive us sometimes. Hope you will take a listen!!! The link is below.

It's up on YouTube now

Have a great day! Leigh

Fall Break

It's a beautiful day!!!! I am loving taking some time to sit outside in my screened in porch. It's been so weird this week around my house. Stu has been gone for the week which has left me and the boys at home alone. I can count on my right hand the number of times Stu has been away at night without me or the boys. He is probably LOVING his time. He had an orthopedic continuing education class in Hilton Head, SC. Not too shabby of a place:)

The boys were out of school for fall break on Monday and Tuesday. We had lots of fun. One night we went bowling.

We went out to eat at their favorite places. Played a lot outside. One day the boys called a bunch of friends to go play backyard football. They had so much fun and I loved just watching them play with that innocent joy. Unfortunately kids don't get as much of that anymore. Makes me sad:( I thought to myself. This is what 9th grade boys should be doing instead of worrying about teenage girls, etc. I KNOW!!!! Wishful thinking!!

The only positive about my sweet hubby being gone all week is that I've not worried as much about making my bed, getting stuff picked up. Of course, he gets home tomorrow, so I might want to get myself off the couch in the screen porch and tidy up a bit:)

AHHHH big news if you watch the new show called "Nashville". Last night's episode showed our very own Dana Cappillino loading guitars into a van!!! Isn't that fun???
Anyway, that's what I've been up to. Hope you are loving the changing of the trees as much as I am. Have a blessed day and a wonderful weekend!
Love,
Denise

On Graceful Living This Week...

With the holidays coming up shortly, we all start thinking about what's important to us. One of the top things that comes to mind is family.

Leigh shares some great ideas for making getting together with your family special this year, with a Family History Party. This involves plenty of scanning old photos into a booklet for everyone, sharing family recipes, and making a calendar of everyone's birthday.

Listen to the clip from the show, and share with us some of the ways you make the holidays special for your family!