Sunday, July 25, 2010

Another giveaway y'all!

Check out Miss Janice over at her blog and be sure to enter for her fabulous giveaway! Being from the south myself, I am definitely entering too.

G.R.I.T.S. ROCK Giveaway!!!

Yes, we are G.R.I.T.S.--Girls Raised In The South! And, we do love grits y'all!!! Grits is a comfort food that has helped many a Southerner through tryin' times. Grits are "King" at the Waffle House and they are also a favorite on the tables at wedding receptions, funeral receptions, and posh Southern soirees. Just like the other well-loved Southern comfort food--macaroni and cheese, grits is a Southern lady's blankie!

Exactly what is grits? Grits is made of hominy and hominy is the dried kernel of corn after the hull and germ have been removed.

My giveaway is all about Grits!!! I love grits prepared any style...plain grits with real butter, grits with cheese, or shrimp & grits. When The Queen of Southern Cuisine, Paula Deen was married, the classic combo of shrimp & grits was served to guests at her wedding in martini glasses. Now my daddy would have said that was too high-fallutin' him!!! I love it though...shrimp & grits served in a martini glass! I prepared Paula's recipe last night and we all loved it!!!

Here's some proper Southern grits etiquette for all y'all who live outside the South:

~Grits should always be served on a plate...along with your eggs and bacon and eaten with a fork; unless they are served alone, then you may use a bowl. Of course, they may also be served in a martini glass for a posh presentation!
~Grits are always eaten with a fork, 'cuz they should be thick enough not to run through the tines.
~Never put syrup on your grits--this irritates us Southerners to no end!
~Don't even think about putting sugar on your grits!!! Good Lord.
~Ketchup on your grits? ma'am, that's very Waffle House!
~Don't you dare eat instant grits...don't you dare!
~Don't call grits "cream of wheat"--again, very irritating to Southerners!

Recipe for Paula Deen's Shrimp & Grits:
2 servings cooked grits
2 tblsp olive oil
1/2 cup diced tasso ham*
2 tblsp diced onion
2 tblsp diced green peppers
20 medium to large shrimp, peeled and de-veined, with tails on**
1-2 tblsp white wine
1 cup heavy cream
Salt & pepper
Green onion tops, chopped
*Tasso ham is a cajun ham found outside of Louisiana. You can substitute salt pork, pancetta, or prosciutto.
**Miss Janice takes the tails off the shrimp before serving

Cook grits according to package directions; set aside and keep warm. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add tasso and saute until crisp. Add diced vegetables and saute until onions are translucent. Add shrimp and saute for 30-45 seconds, or until pink. Remove from the pan and set aside. Deglaze the pan with a little white wine. Slowly add the cream and let reduce until thickened. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add grits to martini glasses and spoon the shrimp & sauce on top. Enjoy!

The Giveway...
First up, I'm giving away an apron just like the one I'm wearing today. It's too cute y'all! I get a LOT of compliments on it everytime I wear it!!! G.R.I.T.S. is printed in large pink and green letters and "Girls Raised In The South" is printed below in smaller pink and green letters. Pink & Green...Southern and preppy!!!

Next...I get so many emails from readers asking advice on 'How to be a Southern belle'. To help y'all start Southern Belle 101, I'm offering these two books by Deborah Ford.

"The G.R.I.T.S. Guide to Life"...The unspoken rules and rich traditions that makes Girls Raised in the South so unique! If you're not from the South and would like to learn more about being a Southern girl, this is the book for you. Or maybe you were raised in the South and now you live Lord-knows-where and just need a refresher course on Southern traditions. Love this book y'all!

Another book by Deborah Ford, "Puttin' on the G.R.I.T.S., A Guide to Southern Entertaining"--is a must-have for those who want to know how to be the perfect Southern hostess. From Potluck to Thanksgiving Dinner, this book has all the tips & ideas to help you plan the perfect social event!
It wouldn't be proper of me NOT to include some grits!!! And, they are Dixie Grits. Yes ma'am they are!

*Please note that I'm not giving away Jean Paul y'all...just the grits sitting next to him!!!

Rules for the Giveaway:

~For one entry--you must leave a comment on this post.
~For two entries--you must be a follower of my blog or let me know if you are a new follower.
~For three entries--you must post about my giveaway on your blog.
~For four entries--you must be a follower of SocialGraces101 (that's me y'all) on Twitter or let me know if you are a new follower.
~For five entries--you must tweet about my giveaway.

Good luck to everyone! I'm taking some time off be be with family this week. This giveaway will end at 12:00 midnight E.S.T on Friday, July 30th and will be announced on Saturday, July 31st.

(Remember, enter on her blog!)

Friday, July 23, 2010

What are your plans for the weekend?

I am redecorating our home. I'm doing one room at a time and have decided to start with the most important room in your home. The entryway/foyer. This room sets the tone for the rest of the home when you walk in. What about when your guests walk in? What do you want them to feel? How do you want to feel or your spouse at the end of a long day? My entryway is not as grand or as big as I would like, but it is still big enough to do something with. I am starting by changing the wall color. When we moved in, all the walls were one color. Arizona White. Which is just short of a dingy white, if you ask me. I'd rather have stark white walls. However, we didn't get to choose. I've slowly over time painted some of the rooms. The kitchen is a soft buttery yellow color. Then we found the color on clearance that our oldest son wanted for his bedroom. So we bought it right then! Then I saw another clearance gallon for our bedroom. I liked it until I gave birth at a birthing center and they had the exact same color! (Yuck!) So now I can't stand the color.

I decided on Cafe Latte by Glidden. It's such a nice neutral color. I can easily add the other colors and have it coordinate. I was looking for a table for one of the walls at Ross and found the perfect mirror instead for the wall. Yay! I love it when I find a goody! I'll most likely head to Home Goods to find a table for my entryway. I'd really like a Bombay style table. I am so excited to start this project.

I'd love to hear what you have planned for the weekend. I hope to finish the painting by this weekend. We'll see.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


What does this mean to you?

There are a few women that I truly admire for their entrepreneurship abilities. Martha Stewart, Oprah Winfrey, Mary Kay, Jenna Jameson, Bethenny Frankel, among many others that are not so famous.

Today, a friendly blogger I follow, did a review of Bethenny's accomplishments. She did such a splendid job that I am just going to leave her review for you to read here. The Life of a Suburban Princess is the blog I'm referring to. Here's what she had to say:

She attended the Natural Gourmet Culinary Institute in New York to become a chef. After she graduated, she formed BethennyBakes, a company that provided wheat-, egg-, and dairy-free baked goods, meals for private clients, and a custom-meal delivery service. The company ceased production upon the launch of Frankel's Skinnygirl brand in 2009. (SP - She was creating allergy-free baked goods when this sort of thing was unheard of! She herself says she built her company out of rubble!)

Bethenny was one of 16 candidates in The Apprentice: Martha Stewart. She made it to the series finale before losing to Dawna Stone. (SP - How amazing is that?! To even make it onto the show is a huge accomplishment!)

Bethenny is currently one of the seven women featured on Bravo's series The Real Housewives of New York City. On June 10, 2010, Bravo TV aired a series spinoff, Bethenny Getting Married?. The show follows Frankel through the planning of her wedding and life with Jason Hoppy. (SP - Imagine being so interesting! If cameras followed me most days there would be a lot of footage of the dishwasher being loaded, laundry being folded....)

In March 2009, Frankel's first book, Naturally Thin: Unleash Your SkinnyGirl and Free Yourself from a Lifetime of Dieting, was published by Fireside. (SP - My own book is in the works so I know what goes into it - to be picked up or approached by a publisher is huge!)

In December 2009, Her second book, The SkinnyGirl Dish: Easy Recipes for Your Naturally Thin Life was published, also by Fireside. (SP - Her first book was such a huge success the market warranted a second one!)

She released an exercise DVD, Body by Bethenny, in spring 2010. (SP - I dont have the time, energy or motovation to put an exercise dvd on let alone make one!)

The Skinnygirl Rules, an audiobook read by Frankel, was described as a summary of the first two books.

She is currently working on two more books, A Place of Yes, and Naturally Fit Pregnancy, as well as a skincare line. (SP - remember when she told KKB she comes from a place of yes? At that moment my entire view of Bethenny changed!)

On June 10, 2010, her new series, Bethenny Getting Married?, had the highest ratings of any series debut in Bravo history with over 2 million viewers. (SP - I havn't even watched my own wedding video!)

Bethenny posed nude for PETA in September 2009. The photo was featured on a billboard in Times Square as part of animal rights group PETA's anti-fur campaign. (SP - No one wants to see me pose nude, not even for a cause!)

Just 3 weeks after giving birth Frankel posed in a size-4 swimsuit for Us Magazine. (SP - I would love to be a size 4!!!)

Once again, thank you to Wiki for making me look like I know a lot more than I really do.

If I had this cheeky little bod I would wear a bikini too. Everywhere.

In the middle of all of of this Bethenny has come out with her own drink and a new brand!

I have invested some time into getting my own drink off the ground and let me tell you, it isn't easy!

I am picturing something like this in pink and green with my logo on the side!

Bethenny graced the cover of People last week - the first Housewife to do so.

If you have seen her new show you will know just how hard Bethenny works. She did not come from money or fame...she simply worked hard her whole life to get to this place. In a time when so many people think everything should be handed to them Bethenny has earned every dollar she has made with her drive, ambition and hard work.

She is a great example of what we can accomplish when we set our minds to it!

Have a fabulous day!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

This is the phone that I upgraded to. My previous phone was a Blackberry 8320. The gold edition. I loved my Blackberry. However, most places stopped making Blackberry apps and my screen was starting to get scratched up. I needed a new phone. I was due for an upgrade. I wanted to keep my full keyboard but try out the touch screen also. I also had to have the Android market. There are just too many apps being made for the Android to not be apart of it. And the new iPhone 4 is a joke! Plus they are still with AT&T who will never be apart of our lives again! So their loss. Not mine. And from the reviews, all the iPhones are being left in the dust by the Android market. Now I just have to get use to the typing on it. There were shortcuts with the Blackberry. Now I just have to learn this new phone.

This is also what I just bought. I'm so excited to receive it tomorrow. I have put it off for a while debating whether or not I was ready to give up the actual books with pages. Plus I didn't want the eye strain. But after much research and hearing from family and friends, I have taken the plunge now that Amazon has lowered the price. Woohoo! I am really looking forward to my new toy! And I just couldn't wait so I also ordered 2 books for it. And I figured it would be nice to have something to read without having to weigh by bags down when I'm in the hospital after giving birth for the 5th time. It is still boring after a while and you just can't wait to get home.

I have heard good reviews for the ex-debutante. And the second book is by the same author. I normally like these kind of books so I thought having 2 would be good in case I finish the first one really fast. (I'm known to finish a book after a day or so.)

Anyhoo. So now that I am catching up to the technology craze... Lol.

Friday, July 09, 2010

Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

These turned out so yummy! I implore you to try these. Utterly mouthwatering. When I picked this up from the grocery store I originally thought they were chocolate croisants. I was wrong. I didn't read the can. You unroll them into these twist shapes. Yes, one can only produces 5 of these delights. "Oh, but there are only 4 in the picture," you say. I just couldn't resist them warm straight from the oven. I also went back for another one right after this picture was taken. I have no self control while pregnant. Hence why I leave all the "goodies" in the grocery store and don't bring them home. That way I won't gain like a gazillion pounds during this pregnancy.

My handsome young boy is almost done with this school year. We both are excited! He will be entering into the 3rd grade and his sister will be entering Kindergarten at the same school. It is hard for me to believe that I will have school children. Not just one in school, but more than one. Whew. Hard for my brain to imagine. I will still have two at home and one born at the end of the following month. So yes, I will still have my hands full at home. How do I do it?

I've gotten a few gadgets lately. I upgraded my Blackberry to a myTouch Slide. I am truly happy with this upgrade. I am hard to please which is why it has been a long time since I had a new phone. I really enjoyed my Blackberry. But it was time to join the Android market. And this phone has features of both that I love and couldn't part with. I have also decided to go ahead and get the Kindle. I had my reservations about just how good it really is and held off on ordering one. Same with the iPad. With all the problems the new iPhone 4 is having, I didn't want to order the iPad and it have lots of problems too. So I am still holding off on that one. Anyway, so I received said Kindle in the mail just the other day. I was in fact impatient and ordered a few books for my Kindle. I was glad that I did. I have already finished 2 of the books and now am on the 3rd one. What a great device it is. I am most likely going to order one for Husband too. It would be so nice to get rid of all my books and have less clutter everywhere. The books are overtaking my bookshelves and the floors. I need to purge, yet again, and get rid of more. The ones I have left I really want to keep though. So now I can order them on the Kindle version and donate the books themselves to my local library. They loved my last donation. I had 4-5 plastic bin containers full.

I am running out of decent maternity wear. I just found out the other day that Lilly does maternity! It is available at Pea in a Pod. Which turns out perfect because the mall that I like more than the others has this very store. Lilly, here I come. She also has her new agendas available in 18 month formats. That is awesome! I love mine!

Well, I really should get off and get ready for bed. But I'm feeling like a little indulgent snack. Strawberries with melted chocolate to dip them in. Yum.

Thursday, July 08, 2010


I am testing again from my Blackberry.
Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

What a cutie she is in her bath! She loves it in here. Although after a while it gets to be too boring sitting down. I didn't get a picture of her standing because I had both hands on her the whole time! I would sit her back down and she would roll over and stand back up! Too much to see. See behind the sink is a bar, and it's open to the back room where I can see the TV from the sink. So naturally, so can she if she stands up and looks that way. Sneaky girl! I love her anyway.

Monday, July 05, 2010

This is what I'm reading now. Unconditional Parenting by Alfie Kohn ordered off Amazon. I'm only into the second chapter right now. I tend to read a lot of parenting style books to better myself as a parent. Some ideas work for us and some do not.
Hello everyone.

I haven't posted in quite some time. Sorry about that. Life has been quite busy and I am relearning some things. Basically trying to slow down my life and learn how to relax. Life with 4 kids and 1 more on the way was a little too much for my brain to comprehend. And enter the panic attacks. I haven't had a full blown attack in over a month now. (Praise God!) But it has made me deal with each aspect of my life and what I need to purge and what I need to focus on.

I have been keeping up with each of you though. Reading your blogs has been a nice break for me in my hectic days. I love keeping up with what is going on in each of your lives. I had hoped that some of you would post more often, but here I sit not posting at all. Not very fair now is it?

I am still not ready to return to church. I have a good church. I don't know anyone from the church, but I love the messages and the way the pastor delivers his message. I have been attending this church off and on now for 3 or 4 years now. Like I said though, off and on. I have not been very disciplined in attendance.

I have been using my new toy. It's not new, but a used toy, but still new to me. It's a Janome Memory Craft 9500. I bought it used from a friend of mine. I got taken advantage of the deal, but I am still glad that I have the machine. I've embroidered a few items already. Once I figure out how to add pictures on my Macbook Pro I'll add some. The only way I have found to add pictures is to drag them onto my desktop screen and then add them that way. There has to be a better way that I do not know of.

My baby girl has a rash, red eyes, and is tired all the time. She will still play, but is tired as she does it. We have an appointment with her pediatrician tomorrow morning. I hope they know what is causing this rash. She is not a happy a happy girl these past few days. It is hard trying to make this girl happy. I can't carry her all day and night, but that is what she wants. And it is especially hard since Daddy isn't home to help. As soon as I sit, she will fuss again. I'm hoping we get some answers tomorrow.

School is still going on. Big Man still has 2 weeks before summer break. He's looking forward to his summer. I have him signed up with Scouts. He'll be a Cub Scout this year. I've also ordered the Keepers of Faith book for him also. Now I understand that most of his activities will overlap the two, but they can be used for both programs. My other 2 older daughters are signed up for Keepers of Home program. One is 4 and one is 2 1/2. My 4 year old starts Kindergarten this fall. She'll be ready for her program while the younger one has the preschool edition of the program. Both are old enough to start learning about homemaking. I am looking forward to all of them starting their activities. I should look online for a group nearby. I highly doubt there is, but it will be worth a look if there is.

I will post more often. I will make a point to not go so long without posting from now on. I am here and alive. Don't give up on me yet!