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Super quick Valentine Party!

I decided about 2 pm on Valentine’s day that our family needed a special dinner. Specifically, that the man that bought the roses needed a pampering dinner. He doesn’t make much of a fuss about not getting special treatment, but he has been working extremely hard and needed some appreciation. So youngest dear daughter baked her first cake (chocolate wacky cake), and I frosted it.

Here is the Wacky Cake recipe:

3 cups of flour (being sure to level off the top of the cup measure after each scoop)

6 Tablespoons of cocoa

2 cups of sugar

2 tsp of baking soda

1 tsp of salt

Put all of these in the sifter and sifted them into a bowl. Then she stirred in the last four ingredients

2 cups of cold water

3/4 cups of salad oil (we used canola)

2 Tablespoons of vinegar

2 Teaspoons of vanilla

Stir it all together and pour it into your cake pans. We baked this at 375 degrees for 25-30 minutes. Cool it and then frost as you choose.

The kids helped set the table, and iron a real red and white checked tablecloth. I do have a thing for table cloths besides they absorb spilled milk before it reaches the floor. :0) I started using tablecloths when the kids were much younger and the table over a carpet.

I took a  minute before the cake mixing started and made this garland. Yes, I was also on the phone and I am sure that my friend thought I was insane.

Here is the picture of the garland.

It took me about ten minutes, left over pink ribbon and scrapbook paper I will never, ever use for anything!  I cut out the hearts free hand with about four sheets of paper stacked together at the same time.  Using the straight stitch on my sewing machine I just sewed them onto the left over  cream seam binding and then the left over pink ribbon. Done! A heart garland to hang where my wooden words normally hang.

Our daughter wrote super quick place cards and put them on the plates. The guys set the table and carried in the super easy tamales(from the freezer section and steamed in the rice steamer). That along with the beans, rice, chips and salad made for a great meal. Everyone was happy and dinner was special. Did anyone notice the super quick garland? Nope!  Does it bother me, no! I called attention to it and everyone was happy. Blue moody feelings banished and everyone was pleased! Was the house spotless? Nope! Memories made and everyone happy! If we wait until everything is perfect then we will never create memories with our children or I am completely stressed and they are too.

What did you do special for Valentine’s day?

talk to you later,


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Thankfulness challenge day 8!

Wow, I keep falling behind on this challenge. I am making an executive decision and I will extend the Thankfulness challenge out until I am thankful for 29 days. We are real people with real life things happening in our lives. While thankfulness is a huge part of our daily lives, I refuse to get stressed out by a blog theme! lol

Thankfulness challenge day 8!

1. I am Thankful for sunshine and warmer temperatures. It has been weeks since our outside temperatures were hovering around the freezing point. This week our average temperatures will be in the 60’s.

2. I am thankful for the lovely man that loves me and chooses daily to live with me and my chaotic, creative tendencies. He is incredibly easy going and flexible… Oh and did I say encouraging.

3. I am thankful for Christ and all he has done for me and with me. He has granted me forgiveness for all the wrong things I do, all the time, unconditionally, without ceasing.

Happy Valentine’s Day to you too!

Talk to you later,

Remember to post what you are thankful for! Gratefulness breeds contentment and peace within.


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The man behind the scenes: Stewart Photography

In honor of his birthday, I want to tell you about the man behind my Etsy Photographs. Stewart Photography is the name of his business and he makes my Chocolate Dog Studio items look beautiful. He is a great photographer and does great work. Since he is just starting in his business I get great business photos.

Here are some of his great photos that he has for sale in various places!

He has photographed most of the items in my shop for a very reasonable price. Here is his facebook page Please go and like it!

Here is his Zazzle shop  where you can buy his images on shoes, buttons, shirts, note cards,  posters, and prints.

Thanks for reading.

See you later,


Which of his photos is your favorite?