I Once Had a Dream

I once had a dream of becoming a nature photographer but I like to be honest with myself. Though I like my pictures they are not magazine worthy. I do like to share them with people and to share why I take the pictures that I do. Every picture I take has a meaning to me. I take great pride in where I come from. I’m just an Okie girl that loves living in the country.

Below are some pictures of a short drive that I took the other day that I wanted to share with you. I hope you enjoy them.

This is “The Big Pond” that sits on our property. My oldest son, Sam likes to drive by it every evening to look for the ducks that stay there. He is growing up with a love of being outdoors.

This lone tree is on the road to where I grew up. Ever since I was a kid I have always felt drawn to it. I have pictures of it in every season and the beauty of it amazes me. It’s not a perfectly shaped tree by any means but then again what is a perfect shape for a tree. It has a natural beauty that inspires creativity in me.

The rolling hills of Oklahoma. It always amazes me the vast difference from one side of our state to the other. On the western side of Oklahoma it has a stark beauty with flat lands and a scarceness of trees but where I’m from in Eastern Oklahoma we have hills and mountains. In some places the trees are so thick and wooded it’s like civilization has never had a chance to reach out and grasp it yet.

My pictures are not the best in the world but it shows important things to me and that’s what it’s all about. I want to share with people things that are meaningful. I hope you enjoyed this post. See ya next time!

Marsha

 

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Blogging 101: How Often Should You Post

Being a new blogger I have been researching tips on how to improve my blog and increase traffic. In particular, how many times in one week should someone post something to their blog. In my research I have read some wonderful tips and I want to thank everyone out there for posting “How To” guides for us beginners. Unfortunately, for this topic there seems to be contradicting tips.

Some people say the more content you post on your blog the better and even suggests posting multiple times a day. They believe the more content there is the better the chance of people coming back to visit and read other posts. That would be great except being a full time mother to teenagers, toddlers and babies as well as working a full time job I find that to be demanding of me. I created this for an escape. I want to write, that is my passion and if people want to read what I write that’s great! That’s what I put it here for. I want my blog to be successful but also stress-free.

Other people say don’t flood your followers with too many posts. Concentrate on fewer and make them a better quality. Don’t rush and post just because it was on your schedule. Write when and what is important to you and you will also get a great following.

A couple of times a week seems to be best for me. I can easily schedule new recipes on a certain day of the week and other “this and that” type stuff other times. So, now I want to hear from you. What have you done in your blog? Which method works for you and if you don’t have a blog but follow them, what is your opinion? Is less more or is more the way to go?

I can’t wait to hear from you! Thanks for taking time out of your busy day to stop by my blog.

 

Roasted Bell Peppers and Potatoes

My family loves to eat meat! That being said, you can’t have meat without potatoes. I can eat potatoes pretty much any way they are made but my family tends to be a little more picky. You can only have french fries or mashed potatoes so many times before you are tired of them.

I searched different recipes online but none of them sounded right for us. (Did I mention how picky my people are?) So, I decided to come up with my own variation of roasted potatoes. They are super easy to make and tastes great.

The ingredients are simple: 6 potatoes, 1 yellow bell pepper, 1 orange bell pepper and 1 red bell pepper. The spices are Worcestershire sauce, onion powder, garlic powder, pepper, seasoning salt, cayenne and a touch of olive oil for drizzling.

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Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Then you take the vegetables and cut them into half-inch sized squares. Try to get them as uniform as possible for even cooking but mine never turn out even at all. Once they are all cut drizzle about a Tablespoon of olive oil over the vegetables and toss to get them all coated.

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Next you want to pour 2 tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce all over, tossing them once more to coat them.

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Once you have them coated mix together 1 tablespoon of each: pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, seasoning salt and just a pinch of cayenne for a little kick (you can add more if you lean towards the hotter end of things. Toss everything to make sure the goodness is spread around.

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Once everything is prepared place your cookie sheet on the middle shelf in the oven and bake 45 minutes. once you pull them out of the oven sprinkle some parsley for decoration and enjoy!

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Click the link below to print this recipe.

Roasted Bell Peppers and Potatoes

This Father’s Day

Father’s Day has always been a hard day for me. My father never saw fit to come visit me and his family; my own grandmother, turns her back on me when we accidently meet in public. I never understood growing up why he never wanted to have anything to do with me. I’m pretty sure I was a cute little girl and fun to be around so I never understood what was wrong.

Now that I’m an adult with kids of my own not understanding how my father could not come visit his child has become more complex. I could never not be involved in my kids life and watching my husband with our kids I see how much I missed growing up.  Fortunately though, I had a great substitute. My grandpa was always there for me growing up. We lived right next door so I was always following him around. I was his little helper. I would rather be outside riding the tractor with Pa then inside playing with my dolls.

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When my daughter was born it was a repeat of myself. Her father was not around so my grandpa stepped in to fill the void again. She was my little mini-me growing. She did everything that I had done. She always followed him everywhere and would rather be outside in the garage with him than inside with us ladies.

My grandpa passed away 8 years ago and that left a big void in us all. He wasn’t like a grandpa. He was a father and a friend. Then I met and married my husband. My daughter was 13 years old and though it took them some time it warms my heart when I hear her call him “her dad” to her friends (never to his face though. She’s a stubborn little teenage girl).

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I have noticed a big change in my daughter since he joined our little family and made it bigger by adding a step sister and 2 little brother. He makes our family complete and fills a void in both of us.

So, today I celebrate the memory of my grandpa and my wonderful husband who is so great with all four kids.

I want to take this opportunity to wish all fathers out there a Happy Father’s Day. You may not know it but you have touched the lives of those around you.

Dad’s Day Smoked Tenderloin

Father’s Day is right around the corner and its always hard for me to come up with a special gift for my husband. I always give him a card and when I got a “oh that’s so sweet” from him I knew I had done the wrong thing.

So this year I decided to go a more man-worthy way. It’s time to break out the grill for our mouthwatering hickory smoked pork tenderloin. They are so simple to make it was a no-brainer choice for me. What better way to celebrate dads and husbands then giving them meat to eat (and rewarding for the rest of the family too, yum!).

The tenderloin is so easy to make. The day before you smoke the meat take it out of the package and put it in a large bowl. Take a knife and poke holes all over it to help absorb the seasonings we’re going to put on it. I use a whole jar of Worcestershire Sauce to coat the meat thoroughly (you can use as little or as much as you want. We love this stuff and soak almost everything in it).

Once you got the meat soaked take out a small bowl and start mixing the dry seasonings. 1 Tablespoon each of onion powder, garlic powder, seasoning salt and pepper and 1 teaspoon of cayenne. Mix the seasonings good then spread liberally over the meat, turning it once to make sure it is fully coated and refrigerate overnight. I usually come back to it every once in a while to turn the meat for even flavoring.

The next day bring out the hickory wood chips and get your smoker fired up! Once you hit a temperature of 220 you’re ready to get the meat on. Now is the hard part; waiting patiently for your meat to cook. Depending on the size of the meat it will cook anywhere between 2 hours and 4. I continually check the temperature once we hit the two hour mark. You want to make sure you don’t overcook the meat. I like it well done so I cook it to 165 degrees. This is just so easy and delicious there won’t be any leftovers.

 

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