Month: July 2014

Day 18 – Favorite Recipes

Easy Crawfish Étouffée (or chicken or shrimp)

1 1/2 cups chopped onions
1 cup bell pepper
1 cup chopped celery
1 can Rotel
2 cloves garlic
1 1/2 stick butter
1 can cream of celery soup
2 pound crawfish tails (or other meat of your choice)
Salt and pepper.

Sauté onion, bell pepper, celery, and garlic in butter. Add soup tomatoes and crawfish cover and simmer about 30 minutes season with salt and pepper to taste. Add water as needed if sauce is too thick. Serve over cooked rice.

My Ultra-Easy Version

1 bag of PICC sweet seasoned blend
Butter to sauté
1 can cream of celery
1 can Rotel
2 lbs meat of choice
Tony’s Chachere Seasoning

Sauté PICC sweet veggies in butter. Add soup, tomatoes, and meat of choice. Cover and simmer about 30 minutes. Season with Tony’s. Add water as needed if sauce is too thick. Serve over cooked rice.

Chocolate Eclair Pie

1 box of graham crackers
1 box of instant French vanilla pudding
1 small container of Cool Whip
1 chocolate icing of choice

Layer pan with graham crackers. Mix pudding and cool whip and pour into pan. Add another layer of graham crackers. Heat icing in microwave until it stirs easily and cover your pie. Refrigerate before eating if you can wait that long.

Marie –
Favorite recipe

Ok I’ll do 2! The first is a fairly quick and easy chowder. During the winter months, I make it a good bit around our house. You can also spice it up if you like with the Mexican velveeta cheese and the southwestern style corn.

Shrimp and corn chowder

1 bunch of green onions
1 stick of butter
2 cups half & half
1 can rotel tomatoes
1 can cream of mushroom soup
2 cans cream of potato soup
1 can corn–drained
8 oz velveeta cheese
1 pack of shrimp
2 cans diced potatoes

Brown onions in butter
Mix all together then simmer after cheese melts. This is a meal that you have to continuously stir so the cheese doesn’t scorch on the bottom of your pan which would completely ruin the whole chowder. I may or may not have done that a time or 2…

My next recipe is a dessert and it is absolutely fantabulous! It does take a bit of time to make, but it’s so worth it!!! I honestly prefer this instead of birthday cake most years!

Mississippi Mud Pie

1 3/4 c. flour
1 stick butter
3/4 c. chopped pecans
1 c. powdered sugar
8 oz. cream cheese 12 oz. Cool Whip
2 sm. instant puddings 1 chocolate 1 vanilla (sometimes I use 2 chocolate)
3 c. milk

1st Layer: Combine melted butter, flour, and pecans. Spread in 9 x 13 baking dish and bake at 350 degrees until brown. Let cool.

2nd Layer: Combine softened cream cheese, powdered sugar, and 1/2 of the Cool Whip. Mix together and spread over flour mixture, let chill.

3rd Layer: Combine 2 instant puddings with 3 cups of milk. Pour over 2nd Layer.

4th Layer: Top with remaining Cool Whip. Garnish with shavings of chocolate candy bar and cherries.

Day 17 – Books to Read Over and Over

Elizabeth –
The Awakening – Kate Chopin
Anthem – Ayn Rand
The Giver – Lois Lowry
Turning Angel – Greg Iles
The City of Ember – Jeanne DuPrau
The People of Sparks – Jeanne DuPrau
The House of Crimson and Clover Series – Sarah M. Cradit
Pam of Babylon Series – Suzanne Jenkins
Wesley the Owl – Stacy O’Brien
Wolves at our Door – Jim and Jamie Dutcher

Marie –
The Hunger Games trilogy
November of the Heart
North and South trilogy

Day 16 – What is your passion?

My passion….aside from my family, friends, and 4-legged children, writing is my passion. Shocking, I know. 🙂 Words are free therapy. The best feeling in the world is that feeling of ‘having to write’ and then reading it afterwards. I try to either write or edit everyday and lots of times I don’t feel ‘inspired’ per say. But I’ve found that I don’t have to be all the time. Sure, the words flow more freely when I am, but for me, I’ve found the cure for writer’s block is simply to KEEP WRITING.

What is your passion?

I know I talk about my kids a lot, but they truly are my world. They are the reason I get up every morning and not a lot of sleep at night and I am completely content with that. 😉

Day 15 – Favorite Songs

1. The Dream is Still Alive – Wilson Phillips
2. Like a Prayer – Madonna
3. Between the Raindrops – Lifehouse/Natasha Bedingfield
4. Silver Springs – Fleetwood Mac
5. Because the Night – 10,000 Maniacs
6. The Potter’s Hand – Darlene Zschech
7. Jolene – Dolly Parton
8. The Lord is My Shepherd – Dennis Jernigan
9. Reno – Doug Supernaw
10. The Resurrection – Matraca Berg
11. Sullen Girl – Fiona Apple
12. Stairway to Heaven – Heart(Kennedy Center Honors)
13. Thought I’d Died and Gone to Heaven – Bryan Adams
14. No Love – Eminem
15. I’m Only Happy When it Rains
16. Mississippi – Paula Cole
17. Straight Tequila Night – John Anderson

Okay….I’ve got to STOP!

1. Hallelujah-Jeff Buckley
2. The Dance-Garth Brooks
3. Fall to Pieces-Avril Lavigne
4. American Pie-Don McLean
5. Tenderly-Sherrie Austin
6. Delicious Surprise-Beth Hart
7. How Great Thou Art
8. I’m Gonna Be Somebody-Travis Tritt
9. Impulsive-Wilson Philips
10. Let Her Go-Passenger
11. Meet Virginia-Train
12. Never is a Promise-Fiona Apple
13. Sway-Bic Runga
14. Troubadour-George Strait
15. You Will Never Be-Julia Sheer
16. Whisper My Name-Randy Travis

Ok, let’s be honest here…this list could go on indefinitely…

Day 14 – What do I miss about childhood

Probably the thing I miss most is times with my grandparents. I’d have weekly dates to Pizza Hut or TCBY with Mamaw and weekend white perch fishing trips with Papaw. They went out of their way to make sure I knew I was loved. Of course, they spoiled me with presents and never refused me, but more than that they taught subtle life lessons in their day-to-day lives. I would give just about anything to hear Papaw’s stories being a little Indian girl (yes, girl…VERY creative man), or help Mamaw in the kitchen making fig preserves. They fostered an independent spirit inside of me without me even knowing it. Phrases like….just try….you can do anything you set your mind to….TRY AGAIN….and don’t quit stay at the forefront of my mind during our journey to see this dream a reality.

I miss a lot of things about childhood! I miss the innocence of being a child, of not knowing how the world really is. I miss the undying hope of a child, truly believing that anything is possible. I miss having unprejudiced faith in everyone, that each and every one of us don’t have something dark in us. I miss the carefree days of summer and the hardest decision I had to make was what to play and with whom. I may miss all of that sometimes, but I hold on to being able to see that in my children’s eyes as they grow. Those are definitely some things that I hope they will hold on to for as long as possible.

Day 13 – Tattoos and Piercings

Elizabeth –
Piercings – only my ears. Though when I was a teenager, we (Marie and another friend) decided to pierce our cartilage ourselves. Didn’t last.

Tattoos – 1. Rain in Arabic on the top of my left foot
2. A caduceus on my right inner ankle
3. Six stars on the top of my right foot
4. A rosary on my left foot
5. A fleur de lis on the back of my neck
6. Belle Tempête on my left wrist

Marie – Piercings/Tattoos
Well, I’ll start with piercings. I have my ears pierced, 4 holes in my left ear, 5 in my right, but I hardly ever wear earrings. I have a Monroe lip piercing, but I rarely have anything in it. Kids tend to pull earrings and lip piercings quite often, so for the sake of tempting my little ones, I hardly wear anything in them for the time being. I have had my belly button and nose pierced, but those have grown up for now. I would eventually like to have my nose redone though.

Now on to tattoos, I have 8 smaller tattoos which I’ll list below…
1. Mermaid on the top of my foot
2. Butterfly on my ankle
3. Sun/moon with Latin proverb on my lower back
4. Tinkerbell on my shoulder
5. Stars behind my ear
6. The word ‘always’ on the back of my neck
7. A kanji symbol on my wrist
8. Belle tempête on my forearm

Day 11 – What did you want to be?

Elizabeth –
As a child, I was obsessed with either sea life or dinosaurs, so marine biology and archeology fascinated me. I was the nerd girl with the giant Dinosaur Encyclopedia….who also read dictionaries for fun. I went thru a time where I wanted to be an astronaut, but my 10-inch thick maroon-colored glasses dashed my hopes and dreams for that. But at 13, my AP English teacher introduced me to the art of writing. Primarily, I wrote poetry, prose, and lyrics, and believed with my whole heart that one day, I’d be a writer. When we were younger, Marie and I might have engaged in a bit of what’s now known as fan fiction with a little show called SeaQuest DSV. Of course, we didn’t know it was fan fiction then. We also *attempted* to write a book when we were in our late teens, but I honestly don’t think we got further than the name….Pacifica. What this awesome book was supposed to be about, I have NO clue….probably for the best. As I aged into my twenties, practicality took over and after 5 years in college, I settled for a Bachelor of Arts degree with a minor in English. My dreams of writing of any kind were always at the forefront of my mind, but I had no clue how to make that dream into a reality, especially when I was convinced I could only write poetry. A year after college graduation, I was back in school….this time for nursing. Becoming a nurse was one of the best decisions I ever made, and though I’d all but given up on my writing, I see clearly now that it’s only enhanced my life experience. Fast forward, eight – almost nine – years later, 2 books + 2 total rewrites + half a million words….and here we are!

Marie –
What did I want to be as a kid?

As a child, I wanted to be a pediatrician; I loved babies and toddlers, so I thought that being a ‘baby doctor’ as I called it would be the thing for me to be. As I got older, I realized that being a pediatrician was probably not the best choice for me because those cute, cuddly babies don’t normally like going to see the doctor.

As a teenager, I wanted to be a Marine Biologist or a Forensic Scientist. My dream in high school was to major in one of those at LSU and minor in Journalism. Honestly, I still wouldn’t mind fulfilling that dream some day, but I will see what life decides to hand me I guess.

As an adult, I honestly wanted to be a mom. Being a mom is truly the hardest ‘job’ I’ve ever had, but by far the most rewarding and fulfilling. Personally, I don’t even like to call parenting a job, even though it is a lot of hard work with no true breaks; I prefer to call it a joy because my kids truly make my heart smile and I can’t imagine life any other way for me.

Day 10 – iPod Shuffle

Elizabeth –

1 – Telephone Lady Gaga and Beyonce
2 – Spirit in the Sky Norman Greenbaum
3 – Torn Natalie Imbruglia
4 – A Sorta Fairytale Tori Amos
5 – Haunt Bastille
6 – Bury Me 12 Stones
7 – Santeria Sublime
8 – Two Black Cadillacs Carrie Underwood
9 – Layla Eric Clapton
10 – Hung Up Madonna

Marie –
iPod Shuffle-First 10 Songs

1. Life After You-Daughtry
2. Long As I Can See the Light-Creedence Clearwater Revival
3. This Used to be My Playground-Madonna
4. Meet Virginia-Train
5. Cruise-Florida Georgia Line
6. Shake the Sugar Tree-Pam Tillis
7. What I Got-Sublime
8. L.A. Song-Beth Hart
9. Run-George Strait
10. Down So Long-Jewel