Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Fountain Family Pictures - Continued

Last week, I got our picture cd from the photographer and thought I would share a few more pictures.
To answer your questions - the pictures on the dock, near water, on the playground, and near the trees, are taken at Mary Jo Peckham park in Katy, TX. It is a 32 acres park with a jogging trail, a walking trail, picnic areas, a lake, a miniature golf course, covered pavillions, a community center with a pool and a playground. It's a beautiful park and if you are ever in the Katy area, you should stop by and check it out.
The rest of the pictures - the ones on porches, around the gazebo, and on the swing were taken at Katy Heritage Park.

"The Boys" Darren, Pops & Andy

"The Girls" Bridgett, Mama Jackie, Me
The whole group. The sun was so freaking bright - we could hardly see!

Mama Jackie & Pops with their kids.

This is one of my favorites.
The funny thing is - I am so much taller than the other girls, they are standing and I am bent over and kneeling on a bench.

I know, I'm the only one different, but I am so not the jeans and boots kind of girl (anymore).

As you can see by my crazy hair, it was windy!
A couple of Pops & Mama Jackie...

A couple of Bridgett & Andy...

And a couple of Darren and I...

Please excuse my unruly hair.

This is my favorite one of us.
And because my husband is a nerd... Darren, the tree hugger.

See what I have to put up with??
The park that we went to is 32 acres - a really BIG park. In all that space, this is what my husband managed to find...

This was about 10 in the morning. Aren't bats nocturnal?

Needless to say, it was an adventure. Any "outing" with the whole family always is. But we had a good (but hot) time, and got some good pictures.
Hope you enjoy them!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Mama's Meatloaf

The other day, I made a meatloaf for Darren and in true Morgan fashion - dropped a big 'ol slice of it on the floor.

In a move that would put Speedy Gonzales to shame, Coco was on that meatloaf just about the time that it hit the floor. My girl doesn't miss much, especially not food. I had to "shoo" her away, because it was so hot you could see the steam coming off of it.

Had Darren not been right there, I probably would have wiped it off and put it on his plate but since he was standing right in front of me, I grabbed a paper plate, scooped it up and cut it into little pieces. After a minute or two in the freezer to cool off, Coco enjoyed her Mama's Meatloaf.

I'm glad that someone appreciates me slaving over a hot stove, to provide for my family.

And she didn't put ketchup all over it.

And in true Darren form, when Coco got done with her meatloaf and was looking for more, Darren had to turn around and tease her with his. To be honest, there was a small part of me that was hoping he would drop his plate and she would get his too! Those boys! Always toying with a girl's emotions!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Dog Days of Summer

Today, Darren was outside mowing and weedeating the yard and Coco was standing at the back door, crying to be let outside to "help" him. I couldn't stand it any longer so when I went out to give Darren some water, I let her outside, and she was more than happy to go out with me.

It was about time for Darren to take a break, so we sat at the patio table and Coco layed down and enjoyed the grass, before Darren cut it.

She just looked so cute, I had to take a picture.

By the way, when Darren was done with his break, Coco was done helping and came back in the a/c with her momma!

Friday, June 26, 2009

Favorite Ingredient Friday (Easy Cheesy Potatoes)

I know, I know I have been slacking lately. I haven't posted a Favorite Ingredient Friday in awhile and let me tell you something - everyone has let me know about it. :) I guess there are a few that actually read this thing (besides me).

Anyhow, let me first start by telling you that I first had these potatoes when we were at a family friend's house for Easter. They were delicious. Of course, I asked her for the recipe and she told all of us like 10 times and I just knew I would remember, and of course - I did not. My sister-in-law and I were talking about what we were cooking for dinner the other day (how exciting our lives have become since we both got married), and she was telling me she wanted to make them but couldn't remember the recipe. So, I e-mailed our friend and she gave it to me, yet again!

So, I made them last night for dinner with a delicious 2 pound meatloaf, by request of my dear husband. :) What can I say, the boy loves his meat.

Anyhow, the potatoes are quick, easy and very yummy and the recipe is fresh on my mind, so I thought that I would share it with you today.

I don't really know the "name" of them, so I'm just going to go with "Easy Cheesy Potatoes".
Easy Cheesy Potatoes
  • 6 medium potatoes
  • 1 can of cream of chicken soup
  • ½ onion, chopped
  • 6 slices of bacon
  • ½ cup of Velveeta cheese (about ¼ of the block), cut into cubes
  • 1 cup of sour cream
  • ¼ cup of milk
  • Salt and pepper, to taste


  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Peel and cut up the potatoes.
  3. Boil the potatoes until they are soft, but not completely done.
  4. Place in a 13x9 casserole dish.
  5. In a skillet, cook the bacon and onions until onions are translucent.
  6. Drain the grease and add the cheese, cream of chicken soup, sour cream and milk until all the cheese is melted and you have a nice sauce.
  7. Pour over the potatoes and bake for 30 minutes or until cheese has set, but has not browned.


And I will be the first to tell you that you do not have to follow this recipe to a "T". You really don't have to follow it at all. Just use all, or even some of the ingredients and you will be good to go.

Normally, the first time I make a recipe, I like to follow it exactly and then if I make it after that - I might play around with it and adjust it a little. But I threw caution to the wind last night and took the lazy, I mean easy way out. Because honestly, I was just so busy and had very little time to get supper together. And yes, sitting on the couch, in my pajamas, making smores with a lighter and playing Sorority Life on the computer, while catching up with Tori & Dean, pretty much constituted my busy schedule.

Anyway, I used red potatoes (because thats what I had), that I boiled whole because who really has time to cut potatoes when they are trying to attend "Spring Break in Miami" 57 more times, so they can win a swimsuit. When the potatoes were done, I drained them and put them in the casserole dish, hacked at them with a knife until they were in smaller pieces, then used the pot I boiled them in, to melt the cheese (I did cut this up, only because I was unsure of how long it would take a chunk of velveeta to melt but I was pretty sure it was longer than I had to wait), cream of potato soup (because that's all I had), milk and however much sour cream I could shake out of the container because I was too lazy to get out a measuring cup, or a spoon for that matter. I omitted the onions, because I didn't have "time" to cut them up and I almost forgot the bacon. Please excuse me. I will give you a moment to get back up in your chair. I know. But cut me some slack. I said almost. But, I have to admit - I opened the refrigerator and stared at the bacon and looked back at my game on the computer, and the game won and I closed the fridge. I know, I know. But, I came up with a plan. I scrounged around in the pantry until I found a package of Oscar Meyer Real Bacon pieces, and I threw some in the pot. Then, out of guilt, I threw in a little more. Then, I finally found a spoon and stirred it all together until it melted and then poured it over my poor hacked potatoes. I moved the meatloaf over and stuck the potatoes in and they baked until I finally won the swimsuit. I can't tell you how long it was, I was in a daze. I pulled both the potatoes and the meatloaf out of the oven, right as my husband was walking in from work and you know what - he never knew the difference! Shh - it will be our little secret.

Oh, and thanks Lesa for the recipe - its fool proof! :)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Blueberry Bonanza!

On Saturday, because we are obviously delusional, Darren and I decided to head out to the only place I know where people gather under a metal roof, with no a/c in 103 degree heat, to spend money on food. The Farmer's Market. And although the circumstances seem dreadful, they were surprisingly not. At first. The first aisle you go through, has lots of large fans blowing the previously mentioned 103 degree heat at you at a lovely speed of 40 miles an hour, so that you get an opportunity to yell "how many onions do you want to get, honey?" at a volume loud enough to wake the dead! It only becomes dreadful, when you get to the "other side" and I say that with contempt only because the only thing worse than screaming over 50 hispanic children and 40 mile an hour fans, is trying to pick produce in 103 degree heat, in the middle of the Texas summer with 50 hispanic children and NO FAN. Yep - the "other side" doesn't have any fans. And just for clarification sake, I do not have disdain for hispanic children. I have disdain for any child that runs and jumps and screams and yells in any public place and doesn't understand when I grab them and say "Where is your mother, you need to be over there with her" or "This is not a playground, that crazy behavior can stop now", and they can't understand me. Because in the midst of the Texas heat, I have been known to utter such mother-isms. Oh, who am I kidding - it's happened when air conditioning was involved too. Anyway, to get to the point (if there is one). Darren and I managed to make it through the screaming children and the heat, alive and with lots of goodies to show for it.

Yes, I am that crazy lady that takes pictures of her groceries.

While we were at the Farmer's Market, we grabbed some delicious looking blueberries that I planned on making muffins with because I seriously have no idea of anything else to do with blueberries and neither Darren nor I just like to eat them plain. On Sunday, when I was getting ready to make breakfast, I dropped something on the floor. A single blueberry. And Coco's life changed forever.

She always follows me into the kitchen, until I "shoo" her out, because she knows her mommy makes a mess, and something is going to wind up on the floor! And that day was no different. Once we realized that she ate the blueberry, Darren and I thought we would give her another to see if she really liked it as much as she thought she did. So, we gave her another and she did. And another, and she still did. In fact - she might have gotten some kind of blueberry high, because she seriously stalked me the entire time I made breakfast. And, I totally caved. I figured that I didn't have any real use for the rest of the blueberries, so I washed a handfull of them and put them on a plate and asked Darren to put them by her bowl. Well, when he was leaning down to put the plate down, she jumped up in excitement and was balancing on two legs. He thought this was hilarious and in true Darren style - continued to do it and laugh! Well, he did it one too many times and then, when she was coming down, she hit that plate with one of her paws and blueberries went E V E R Y W H E R E! I wish I had a video camera to catch her excitement. For a short moment, I thought she might be having a seizure, she shook with such excitement. She literally stood there and shook! Then, in a manic state - she tried to cover every inch of that floor to recover every single blueberry. And folks - she did. She went this way and that way and back over here and oh, there is another one over there, until she got them all!

Don't mind the mess in the background - we are "home improving".

Ok, let me be honest. We are taking a break from "home improving". I have had that mess since Memorial Day and I really don't plan on working on it any time in the near future.

See how she couldn't decide where she wanted to start? She was so afraid she was going to miss one.

And how do you like her haircut? We shaved her down to almost nothing - for the summer.

That's my girl! She got them all! And because she has the cutest face ever and we have a hard time telling her no - we let her lick the blueberry muffin batter off of a spoon. And she loved every minute of it! Next time....cherries!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Fountain Family Pictures

Darren's family was in town staying with us last weekend, because we were celebrating Pops' birthday. In honor of another year come and gone, we decided to partake in family pictures. We met with Melissa from Snapped with Love Photography, who did Darren's and my "family" pictures earlier this year. She just previewed a few on her blog, and I thought that I would share them here. She takes such great pictures, is very reasonably priced and is such a joy to work with. If you're in the market for pictures - you should check her out.

One of just Darren and I
Andy, Bridgett, Mama Jackie, Pops, Me and Darren I thought this one was pretty cool. All curtesy of a picnic table!

This is probably my favorite. I love our Red, White and Blue.
I think it's funny to see how different all of the guys are, and how much taller I am than my sister-in-law and mother-in-law.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Man vs. Food

Normal people would think that statement would be fitting for a jungle - hunt for your dinner - its them or you- kind of situation. Not in our house. And just so you know, we have never watched the TV show. Or we might have been prepared for what comes next. Sunday we met a dear friend of mine and her family at Mel's Country Cafe. Her dad wanted her husband to try to eat the Mega Mel Burger. Apparently, it's a big deal and you get your picture and your name put on the wall if you finish it. So, we met them there for a seemingly normal lunch. A short time later - it turned into some macho challenge that still makes me feel a little queasy. Now, to be completely honest - my dear friend and I are the ones that pressured my husband into joining her husband on this quest, but I do want to point out - he didn't have to give in. :) Let me first tell you about the Mega Mel Burger... 1 ½ pounds of Freshly Ground Beef 1 pound of Bacon ¼ pound of American Cheese and lots and lots and lots of lettuce onion, tomato slices and pickles! When I say "lots and lots and lots", I mean - I'm pretty sure there is a whole onion, a whole tomato, a whole bag of shredded lettuce and half a jar of pickles on that burger! For the record, for the first time in my life - I am not being dramatic or exaggerating. There really was that much "ruffage" on that burger! Let me also tell you that if you think you are going to be smart and say "hold the onions" they gladly say "ok" and add another hamburger patty! You will get the same amount as everyone else - whether its in ruffage or beef! This is a challenge my friends and here in Texas - we take our challenges and our meat, seriously. Let me next tell you about The Rules:
  1. If you leave anything on your plate, you will be disqualified.
  2. If anyone takes anything off of your plate, you will be disqualified.
  3. You must be able to talk and walk after you finish. If you cannot, you will be disqualified.
  4. If you get sick before you pay your ticket, you will be disqualified.
  5. Mel's will stop you, if they think you are going to get sick.
  6. You have two hours to finish the Mega Mel Burger. If you do not finish in two hours, you will be disqualified.
  7. If you get sick, YOU clean it up. Not anyone at the cafe, or your wife!

I especially liked Rule #7! Also - they bring you a plastic bag (think grocery bag) and tell you that if you get up to go to the restroom and it's locked and you're going to get sick - get sick in the bag. It's less to clean up, you see. They also bring you a wonderfully bright green 5 gallon bucket. You know - in case don't make it the 15 feet to the restroom and you get sick at the table. Nothing sounds as appetizing as a 3 pound hamburger and a puke pail on the side!

They also give you a really great piece of advice. They tell you (loudly enough for the whole restaurant to hear) that they suggest you eat the bottom bun first. They told the guys that if they haven't gotten sick by the time that they get to that bottom bun, that they will if they eat it last. After all - it's sitting there soaking up all the juice from the veggies and all the grease from that cheese, and meat. Sounds yummy, doesn't it.

To make our guys feel extra manly - they held up a couple of pictures of young girls and told them that the "girls" record for finishing that burger was 19 minutes!

So, we anxiously await our meal and the guys' $20 heart attack on a plate. I mean lunch. And out it comes...

He was thinking "What The Hell Did I Let Them Talk Me Into?" He was also wondering when the papparazzi was going to go away. My friend, the waiter and I were all taking pictures!

Do you see how scared he was? The fear in his eyes was almost enough for me to tell him that he could back out. Almost!

To properly "dig in" he had to turn it on it's side. Darren was smart and listened to the advice of a wise, wise man and ate that bottom bun first.

When I asked Darren about his strategy, he said "I'm not going to rush, I just want to see if I can finish it". I have to tell you that my heart was a little heavy. After all - this is Texas and there isn't anything Texas women love more than a man that can finish a meat challenge! :) Darren asked me not to post these last two pictures and as much as I take his feelings into consideration, they completely summed up his Mega Mel Burger experience and were too good not to post.

He finished a little less than half of the burger (without getting sick). The waiter came back and brought the guys to-go boxes. I seriously can't believe that we can even say "hamburger" in our house without Darren wanting to throw up.

We took the box home and I broke up one of the patties and put it on a plate for Coco. Darren couldn't finish, but Coco didn't have a problem finishing what we gave her! I knew I had a winner in my family :)

She could seriously be a competitive food eater.

I think she finished that patty in 15 seconds. That plate was clean!

No puke pail needed for my baby girl!

Friday, June 5, 2009

She's At It Again!

Last week, Darren ran and got dog food and brought Coco back a new toy (remember last time). It's a cute little pink pig. It has a tennis ball body and plush arms, legs and head. It's so cute! Or should I say, it was! Our little one immediately loved it. She will throw it up and catch it, drag it around the house, take it outside to play with it and she even rests her head on it, when she goes to sleep. Sounds so cute doesn't it? I hate to spoil that serene little image, but I must when I tell you what she preceeded to do next. When she was holding her little piggy, I like to think she was snuggling it. On closer inspection I realized that she was holding it down and pulling as hard as she could, to pull its hair out. In the midst of all of this - she managed to rip both of it's eyeballs off! We have such a sweet one, don't we.

Looks sweet, doesn't she?

Our little sadist, in action!

And - the end result. Poor little piggy!
I think we should just stick with bones and balls - that girl is hell on toys!