Saturday, July 29, 2017

Cinnamon Chip Scones

Cinnamon Chip Scones 
Inspired by Panera Bread's Scones



3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking poweder 
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup cold butter, cut into tablespoon pieces
1 cup cold buttermilk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup cinnamon chips 
2 Tablespoons butter, melted
Granulated sugar for sprinkling


1 cup powdered sugar
2 Tablespoons water

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Stir to combine.  Add the butter and use a pastry blender to incorporate the butter into the flour until the butter is pea-sized.
  3. Make a well in the center of the flour and butter mixture.  Add the buttermilk and vanilla and use a spatula or large spoon to combine the dry and liquid ingredients until the dough starts to come together; don’t overmix – it’s ok if there are dry, crumbly spots here and there. Add the chips, using your hands to knead them in a bit. Turn the dough out onto a surface dusted with 1-2 tablespoons flour and combine the dough and chips together with your hands, kneading briefly, just 2-3 times, until it comes together. Pat and lightly press the dough into a long rectangle, about 15X3-inches.
  4. Cut the length of dough into triangular wedges, about 12-14 and place on the baking sheet, about an inch apart. Brush the tops with melted butter and sprinkle with sugar.
  5. Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes until just lightly golden brown and no longer doughy in the center. 
  6. Remove scones from sheet and let cool slightly on a wire rack.  Combine powdered sugar and water to create the glaze.  Using a spoon drizzle glaze over scones.  Let dry.  

~peace and blessings~


Saturday, July 22, 2017

Gettysburg National Military Park

On day 3 of our trip, we decided to visit the Gettysburg National Military Park.  I have been to Gettysburg numerous times.   J and the kids have not.  We started our tour at the Visitor's Center.  It's a beautiful building with information desks, a Starbucks, a cafeteria, museum, cyclorama and short movie.  The movie, museum and cyclorama tickets were reasonable at 15 pp for adults.  They also offer guided auto tours and bus tours.  You can find more information here:

The film, "A New Birth of Freedom",  was narrated by award winning actor Morgan Freeman and the restored Gettysburg Cyclorama, which depicts the final fury of Gettysburg- "Pickett's Charge".

The Federal Flag

The battlefield hosts  100s of monuments to the soldiers and states that were involved in the Battles at Gettysburg. 

This is the eternal flame Peace Monument.

 Miss M and I at the monument.

The Pennsylvania Monument.  It is so large that you can view it from most parts of the Battlefield and is the largest at 110 feet tall. The Pennsylvania State Memorial is a monument in Gettysburg National Military Park that commemorates the 34,530 Pennsylvania soldiers who fought in the July 1 to 3, 1863 Battle of Gettysburg during the American Civil War.   It was dedicated in 1910, so many survivors of the battle were able to attend the ceremony. 

Abraham Lincoln

 H and M standing on the stairs of the monument.  We also climbed the inside stairs to the viewing platform at the top of the monument.  


Monument of Major General George Gordon Meade 

We could have spent hours touring and have plans to return when it's not so hot outside.   Temps were at 100*F.  

Thanks for stopping by!
~peace and blessings~

Hershey PA Visit

We took a mini-vacation to Hershey and Gettysburg last week.  We stayed at a Holiday Inn Express just outside of Hershey.  Right beside the hotel is Messick's Equipment.  H was in heaven!  There was farm equipment everywhere.  The manager, Jay, was kind enough to give us a tour of the parts, sales and shop of the operation.  The shop is 2 acres in size!  Once we checked in, we started our trip with a visit to the Tanger Outlets in Hershey.  We ate dinner at a local pizza joint.  It was good.    Then we visited Hershey's Chocolate World.  It is free and you can take the animated Chocolate World Tour.  

Here are the kids on the Chocolate World Tour.    We did some shopping and purchased some candy....can't visit Hershey without buying a Hershey bar! 

On Day 2, we visited Hershey Park.  We were blessed with complimentary tickets from my mother-in-law.  We were surprised that we had to pay to park, though.  They offered general parking for $15.00  and preferred parking for $25.00.  We went with general because they offer tram service to the park and back to the lot at the end of the day.    It was a hot and humid 95*.  I was thankful for the shaded benches throughout the park and the misting fans as we waited in line for rides.  They have a great water park as well, but we weren't able to visit due to the short length of our visit. 

View from the Ferris Wheel

The Sky Rush Coaster

M and H at the end of the day

Group selfie after 12 hours in 95* temps.

Some things to remember when visiting Hersheypark:

1.  Use general parking and utilize the tram service.

2.  Buy the Souvenir drink all day cup.  It was 13.99 and could be refilled all day for free.  

3.  Take cooling towels to wear around your neck if the weather will be hot.

4.  Be prepared to pay a lot for everything....lockers, food and souvenirs.

5.  Visit the shows.  They are a nice break from the busyness of the park and can provide a break from the heat.

Thanks for stopping by!

~peace and blessings~

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

New Truck

My husband has been on the search for a new pickup for at least a year now.  He just didn't want to trade in his 2000 Ford F-150 until he found the right truck.   The truck, seen above,  was in bad shape body-wise.  It still ran well, but was literally falling apart.

Monday evening, we took a ride to a dealer who had called J about the truck pictured above.  It is a 2011 F-150 XLT with low mileage and the right size engine and bed.    We took it for a test drive and it rode beautifully.     The only issue is that it is gray.  J isn't fond of gray.  The two tone does make it look better to us, as far as gray goes, so after three hours at the dealership, J said yes to the truck!  


Thanks for stopping by!
~peace and blessings~

Sunday, July 9, 2017

How Does Your Garden Grow?

Welcome to our home!  As you can see our front beds have grown in quite a bit.  

Our Day Lilies up close and personal.

 Last year, we had the fountain here, but the Day Lilies wicked all of the water out of the fountain.  This year, we replaced it with our gazing ball.   

 The Hydrangea bushes are about ready to bloom!

This is the side of the porch.  My Lemon Balm is out of control!  As soon as I took these, I cut it back to allow the Black Eyed Susan plants some room to bloom.  

You can see the fountain just behind the giant Hosta plant.  I'm still waiting for blooms on them.  The temps here have been much cooler than expected, causing some delays in blooms and harvest of veggies.

Thanks for stopping by!
~peace and blessings~

Friday, July 7, 2017

I'm Back!

I have been away from my blog for over a year.  Life has been happening at a rapid pace and I haven't had the energy or drive to keep up with blogging.  Just being brutally honest.  My school year was far from positive, my position as union local president was demanding and difficult and my family was more busy than we'd ever been with hockey, dance, college visits, music concerts, recitals, competitions, and more.  Here's a recap of the year....with photos I have on the computer. 

 J's youngest brother (who was three when we started dating!) got married in June of 2016.  His wife is lovely and we are so blessed to have her as part of the family. 

Here we are at the reception.
Tap Dancing
Miss M's Dance Recital was the day after the wedding.  The studio was gracious enough to move all of her dances to the Sunday show.  

 Our family after the recital

Our summer was packed, but we made it to Erie, PA and Presque Isle for a short visit.
I hosted a small baby shower at our home for my dear cousin Jan, who was expecting her first baby in August.  That's a display of the favors.  

We also took a short camping trip to State College, PA and visited Ag Progress Days hosted by Penn State University.

In August, we welcomed baby Rachel, my cousin Jan's daughter, to the family.

 In October, we attended the Senior Night Celebration of our goddaughter.  

 We also learned that the newlyweds were expecting a baby girl in the Spring!

In November, we celebrated H's 18th birthday!  Where does the time go?!

In December, we attended Miss M's first Middle School Christmas Concert.  It was lovely!

Can't forget Christmas!  The most wonderful time of the year!

H and his girlfriend attended her school's winter formal.  Don't they look great? 

In February, we honored H at Senior Night.  It was a wonderful night.  

Easter 2017

Our table

Our family

We also had two dance competitions during the school year.  Miss M danced on three teams.  Her tap team scored High Gold at the last competition.  Above is her Jr. Jazz Costume.  
H and his girlfriend attended her Senior Prom. 
Baby girl Reagan Grace joined the family in April.  


 H is her Godfather.  

In May, Miss M turned 12.  Again, where does the time go?

In June, H graduated high school with High Honors.  We're very proud of him.  He will continue his
studies at Penn State University, majoring in Biorenewable Systems and Ag Management.


Our goddaughter also graduated this year with high honors.  She will be attending college in Pittsburgh.  
Our family after Recital 2017.  It was the same weekend as H's graduation and M danced both nights this year.  She was even part of the Production team, which is a team of hand selected dancers by the dance instructors.  I'm proud of her!
As soon as school let out, Miss M wanted to attend a singing camp, sponsored by the local playhouse.  She sang Somewhere Over the Rainbow from the Wizard of Oz.  We were so proud of her for facing the challenge of singing her first solo and being successful at it.
As you can see, her smile says it all!  She loved it!
Later in June, we had H's Graduation party for family and a few close friends.  

My sil made this money pizza for H's gift.  I thought it was really cute!

That about sums it up!  I'm much better at photo taking with my phone, then with my camera these days.    I need to be better about that!  

Thanks for stopping by!
~peace and blessings~