I’m SO excited!

I say this (so excited thing) with a little trepidation…  Knowing I may feel differently in a few hours!  lol  My nieces are coming!  They’re actually getting to spend the night today.  This is a HUGE thing because their mama doesn’t like for them to sleep anywhere but safely, right under her roof.  I don’t blame her, I was the SAME way.  I remember crying when my kids had to spend the night visiting their dad on weekends.  I HATED being without them.  My wonderful sister in law, however, took mercy on me.  She knows I’m missing them and need to spend time with them.  I’m very sick (don’t worry – not contagious) and I feel like my back is up against the wall.  I’m battling time here.  While I feel well enough to handle these little demons  angels, I want to spend as much time as I can.

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This is 4 year old Esme’.  She’s a HANDFUL and a half.  That doesn’t even cover it.  Personality enough for 40 people, really.  She has meltdowns when they make her leave my house and I have to tell her that she can’t come back if she doesn’t leave.  HAHA!  It’s true, how can she come back if she doesn’t first leave?  She scratches her head and tries to understand.  Anyway, she’s probably the most intelligent child I’ve ever spent time around.  Not in the traditional way either.  She actually has a hard time focusing on letters and numbers BUT she knows things that she’s never read or seen on TV.  It’s in her head.  She’s not even allowed to watch TV at home.

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Esme’s actually pretty rotten.  That’s probably why I love her so much.  I’m glad, though, that I’M not the one who has to make the major decisions regarding her life!  Whew!  I’ve already raised one of these kinds of kids and let me tell you….  it just about KILLED me!  lol  Can you see the evil glint in her eye?

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To sweeten the pot, a little, my brother and sister in law gave me Ireland Elizabeth!  She’s the EXACT opposite of Esme and is just good and stable!  lol  I love her in a different way than Esme’.  She’s my squirmy snuggler.  Ireland is 8 months old.

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Here I am with Ireland and her older sister, my intelligent and wonderful niece, Aubrie!  I don’t get to spend NEARLY enough time with Aubrie because of school and sports but I’m SO close to her too and even more proud of her.  I expect that she’ll be running a major corporation one day.

I’ve said before and I meant it, my nieces are like my daughters.  I couldn’t love them more if they came from my body.  I’m SO thankful to my brother and sister in law for deciding to have these babies later in life.  They add the spice that my life was needing and they keep my young!

Harvest Cheesy Potatoes

As I mentioned, last night I made Oven-Fried Buttermilk Chicken.  I had to have some kind of starchy yumminess to go with it,right? Glad you agree 😉

Harvest Cheesy Potatoes

Ingredients:

5 cups peeled and cubed OR grated potatoes

2 cans cream of chicken soup

1/2 cup (1 stick) melted butter

2 tsp creole seasoning (you can use any kind of season salt)

1 medium onion, chopped (optional)

1 cup sour cream

2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese (or throw in an extra handful like I always do!)

1 cup panko or regular bread crumbs mixed with 2 TBSP melted butter

OR you can top with cornflakes or potato chips

Directions:

Combine potatoes, soup, butter, season salt, onion, sour cream and cheese.  Pour into a greased 9×13 inch pan.  Top with bread crumbs, cornflakes or potato chips (1 cup).  Bake at 350 F for one hour.

This was SO good!

Oven-Fried Buttermilk Chicken

I made the most amazing dinner last night 🙂  I’m an awesome cook but sometimes my heart’s not in it.  Last night it must have been!  I had piano lessons (bucket list thing) but I wanted to make sure dinner was put together and in the oven so that all Julia (teenage munchkin) really had to do was take it out and eat.  Surprise…  it all came together!

(photo credit:  Thenourishinghome.com)

Oven-Fried Buttermilk Chicken

Ingredients:

2 cups flour

3 tsp Creole Seasoning (You can use any kind of season salt)

2 tsp paprika

1 tsp salt

1 pkg (10) chicken drumskicks

1.5 cups buttermilk

1/2 cup (1 stick) melted butter

Directions:

Dip chicken in buttermilk.  Dredge chicken into mixed dry ingredients.

Drizzle melted butter onto a rimmed baking sheet.  Place chicken in pan and bake at 400F for 30 minutes.  With tongs, carefully turn chicken and bake for another 30 minutes.

Easy and delicious!  I served these with my cheesy potatoes.