Own Your Beauty

Thursday, May 28, 2009

The Smallest Blessings... family ambitions

So for the past few weeks, I have missed doing this... My reasons are simple, sweet and sad. You see my grandfather turned 98 years old in January. He has been married to my grandmother for close to 70 years. My grandfather has lived a very active life up until mid April. He has never once complained a single bit, however it became very obvious, that his body and mind were getting tired. From april 13 on he he has gone down hill just a little bit each day. My grandmother has tirelessly stayed by his side answering to his every whim and request. Even heating up apple juice and water, because... well, that's just how he liked it.

I have been going by there every Friday afternoon for lunch and to help out any way I can. I made him a homeade strawberry and plum pie, took him his favorite ribs from O'Charleys, whatever he liked. I will jokingly say that I believe he may have been just a little spoiled, but then again, we are talking about a man that had 3 children, 9 grandchildren, and 11 great grandchildren... I guess he's done his fair share of spoiling us as well.

On Friday May 15, I went over there, to find him unable to get out of bed by himself. This is the bed that he and my grandmother have shared all of their marriage. On Saturday, my aunt had a hospital bed brought in, and that's where he stayed. Monday evening, my grandmother called everyone around 7:30 to let them know that he just wasn't himself..... everyone came quickly! We all sat up all night long Monday night. On tuesday morning, the hospice nurse that has been helping out came by to help bath him and shave him. From the time he started shaving, my grandfather has shaved every single day!! She was certainly surprised to see a house full of exhausted, coffee jacked up people. She went on about her business and shaved him. When she moved out of the front of him, my cousin made a comment that he had not moved.... the nurse turned around and told us all what we already knew. He was gone. I felt like someone had ripped my heart out. He simply went to sleep Monday night and never woke back up. It is hard for me to accept, but I know that this was God's will. My grandfather was Roy M. Long... aged 98, passed away May 19, 2009, in his home, with his family around him.He gave his life to the Lord in 1955 and has remained active in his churchall of these years. He was loved and respected by many, as a man, a father, a grandfather, and as a soilder.

To his tribute, I reaffirmed my faith and life this past Sunday. I can hope that I am as good of a wife to my husband as he was a husband to my grandmother, and a mother as he was a father. Please say a prayer for my grandmother as she is feeling lost without the love of her life.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Tip for the Week....

Well Ladies, I must say, that I enjoy reading every one's blogs so much! I always find such helpful advice and thoughtful dialogue. That is what gave me this idea sort of a tip central....

I am a collector of books. New books, old books, books on gardening, books on cooking, books on etiquette, books, books, books, and of course we own several copies of"The Good Book". I thought that since I had such a wealth of knowledge at my hands, that I would perhaps find something that I felt like would be a thoughtful and lovely tip for the coming new week. I encourage your tips and ideas too... goodness knows we can all always use new ideas. I'm breaking it up into 4 categories of marriage, home, beauty, and including a recipe. If this seems like it is catching, I may add more areas of interest in the future. Thanks for your ideas!

1. Marriage- This is timeless advice, but I have always found it to be true.... "Never go to bed angry at your spouse." Anger and emotions does a couple of things, first being that if you are angry, you probably are not doing alot of snuggling, thus losing that contact with each other. Secondly, anger and heavy emotion do not make for a good night sleep. Your blood pressure rises, your heart beats faster, and your body does not get to that relaxation state that you need to achieve REM. Thirdly, when you do not achieve a good nights sleep, your face tells it all. You have circles under your eyes, your skin looks dull, and by the end of the day you are dragging. Now, I don't know about you, but this is not the face I really want my husband to come home to. Moral- Do not go to bed angry with each other. Work it out, and your body will thank you for it!

2.Home- Try to clean up your clutter- Clutter breeds, I am a firm believer of this. Think about how easy it is to add to clutter. However, if you spend just 5 minutes in the morning and 5 minutes ( I recommend after the dinner dishes are done) in the evening, just picking up, it will be much harder for your clutter to pile up on you.
Joshua 24:15 "As for me and my house we will serve the Lord."

3.Beauty- Take time every morning to say a small prayer for yourself. I put this under beauty, because as women, we so often take care of everyone else's needs, leaving ourselves to the last. Suddenly you look up, it's 4:30 and you've still got your workout wear on and your hair in a crazy half ponytail, half bun. By taking this 5 minutes or so,to focus on yourself, you probably will be more apt to take a few more minutes to slap on some moisturizer, maybe a little blush and some gloss on your lips. I promise it will make you feel better.

4. Recipe- Ok, for my chicken lovers....here's a recipe so simple and easy, it'll blow your mind!

Take 8 chicken pieces... (I personally love breast and the boneless work great on this, but whatever floats your boat. ) about 8 hours before you are ready to fry, soak your chicken in a mixture of buttermilk (enough to coat evenly all pieces) 2 tsp of black pepper, and Jane's Crazy mixed up Salt. Refrigerate and soak for at least 8 hrs. After this, place 1 1/2 cups of all purpose flour & 1/2 cup of House Autry Chicken Breader, and a tsp of each, basil, oregano, and Jane's Crazy Mixed Up Salt in a large dish and whisk, whip 2 eggs and set beside your flour mixture. In a large skillet(cast iron if you've got it!) heat 2 tbsp of oil, any kind you have and heat. Coat each piece of chicken on both sides with the flour mix, then dip in the egg wash, then back in the flour mix. Gently lay in your oil. An easy way to test your oil, is to take a small piece of potato, and dip in the oil... if it bubbles, your oil is hot enough. Depending on what type of chicken you are using, a general rule is about 8-10 min. before flipping the first time, the cover and let cook. You will want to check on this about every 3-5 minutes, by gently piercing with a fork, once the juices start to clear, flip one more time and cut the heat down to medium low. Generally it takes about 25-30 minutes . This sounds labor intensive, but actually it's not, and if you really want to jack it up one more Southern notch... once your chicken is totally done, add one stick of butter, and one bottle of Kraft Barbecue sauce. You should also fill the bottle half up with water and add this. Cover the pan and turn the heat to low. Let this simmer for about 8 minutes, and it's outta this world! The sauce forms a gravy, which, my kids go nuts over and usually are sopping up with biscuits.

Because the chicken is so rich, I usually serve pretty simple sides, like rice cooked with chicken broth instead of water, applesauce, and a green salad of spinach, green onions, green olives and cilantro. Dessert at this point is totally optional, you may even want to save you applesauce for last and serve it over pound cake. It may sound simple... but in a case like this, especially if you serve it really cold, it'll be great

Friday, May 1, 2009

Confessions of a Big Girl

I have a struggle with my weight. It bogs me down, and in fact there are times when if I don't watch out, it will consume me! I try to follow Weight Watchers, however I am an Epileptic and am on a medicine that unfortunatly makes my metabolism like a turtle. I come from a long line of hippy girls and I've come to accept it as a fact of my life. Once I came to terms with the fact that I would always, always, be on a diet, I actually started to find some humor in it. I have included a clip of fiction that I wrote inhopes that if there is anyone out there who shares this struggle, you may find a few minutes of humor and understanding. Enjoy!

So here I sat, with my cup of real coffee trying to decide just what the heck I could use to expand my advertising. I mean let's face it would you rather have someone cater your affair, wedding, etc who really looked like she enjoyed the food, or some twig who looked like she had never even eaten? Ding ding ding... go for the girl with the gut and the butt, you'll be more satisfied with the end result, I promise, or my name's not Jenifer Helton! Great, I certainly don't think I could put that on my advertising. I'm stuck! I'm hungry, but something in me wanted to bust out laughing. The concept of the idea was good, but I really don't think the words gut and butt belonged in advertising.... I somehow think the whole Nair incident yesterday may have wiped away some brain cells. Which by the way... NEVER PUT THAT STUFF ON YOUR EYEBROWS. Don't ask, just adhere to my advice, and trust me, don't leave the towel in the bathroom floor, for the cat to lay on.... let's just say that Oscar the Fat Cat's big orange fluffy belly, is welllll, it turns out he wasn't so fat after all, just furry.