Saturday, January 6, 2018

First Snickerdoodle Create Bake Make Link Party of the New Year!

Happy New Year!  How were your holidays?  Ours were filled with family, food (too much), and being a little lazy.  Now it's back to school for Ali Rose and the grandkids, back to college for me, meniscus surgery for my hubby, and a new baby for Staci--hope she is coming today.  We will fly back to NC in a couple of weeks to help out with Parker and the housework.  Exciting!

Please follow your hosts on one or more Social Media Platforms.
Beverly and Gloria Across the Blvd (G+ / Pin / Twitter / FB / Instagram)
Please let us know you’re following from Snickerdoodle Create, Bake, Make. We’d love to follow you back!
We're happy to announce that we will be featuring even more of your wonderful posts. Each week, on all five blogs, you'll find the co-hosts' selections for featured posts in the following categories: Crafts/DIY, Recipes, and Crocheting/Sewing. We will each include the Most Clicked as featured post as well. In addition, you may find other posts being featured, too.
While you're here, we'd love for you to grab our new party button.
Snickerdoodle Create Bake Make Party Button
Pinterest Promotion It's a great way to give you even more exposure!
Pinterest Board Promotion Logo
Follow all of the co-hosts on Pinterest and then send an email request to join the board to Please include a link to your Pinterest Profile as well as the name of your blog.
If you're featured, please grab our Snickerdoodle Feature Button!
Snickerdoodle Create Bake Make Feature Button
~On to the Features~
All Features will be pinned to the Snickerdoodle Create, Bake, Make Features Board. We would love for you to pin the features, too. Please pin from the original source!

Since our last party was mostly Christmas posts, we will just feature our most clicked today.  Make sure to stop by each host's blog though as they could be featuring some other posts.  
Most Clicked:
WACKY CAKE  by Simply Stacie.

Wacky Cake - Moist, chocolatey and easy to make! This vintage cake was popular in the Depression era and contains no butter, milk or eggs.

Party Guidelines for Snickerdoodle Party
Thank you for partying with us!

Thursday, January 4, 2018

First Funtastic Friday of 2018

Funtastic Friday 160 Link Party

Happy New Year! I hope you all had a wonderful holiday. Ali rose went back to school on Tuesday, I start my last 3 classes of my degree next week, and we are all awaiting Staci to give birth to her little girl!  Can't wait to go visit them!  We’re looking for bloggers to help host the Funtastic Friday link party. If you’re interested, get in touch with me or one of the other party hosts.

Meet the Funtastic Friday 160 Link Party Hosts

We would love it if you followed us on social media. Funtastic Friday Party Hosts
strawberry fluff dessert Strawberry Fluff Dessert @ Life Between the Kitchen and the Coop

Debra's favorite - Stuffed Sausage Skewer Appetizer Recipe @ Bombshell Bling
Sherry's favorite - Organize Anything in Just 5 Steps @ aka Design
Coconut Shrimp Recipe
Donna's favorite - Coconut Shrimp Recipe @ Home Cooking Memories

Heidi's favorite - Wood Slice Winter Garland DIY @ Crafts Unleased
Roasted Tomato Rosemary Soup is the perfect way to warm up on a cold day! © 2017 COOKING WITH CURLS
Lacie's favorite - Roasted Tomato Rosemary Soup @ Cooking with Curls

If you’re linking up and joining the party, please grab a button or link back to Olives & Okra or one of the party hosts (right-click on the image and save the image to your computer): Funtastic-Friday-Link-Party-Thumbnail-150x If you’re a featured blogger, please grab a button to place on your blog (right-click on the image and save the image to your computer): Funtastic-Friday-Featured-Thumbnail1 All features are pinned to Olives & Okra’s Funtastic Friday board.
We will also share your post on social media if sharing buttons are readily available in your post. Help grow the Funtastic Friday link party. 
Disclaimer: By submitting a link to this blog hop, you are giving me permission to share and/or feature your blog post and image on social media and on my blog, Olives & Okra. All links shared will either link back to the blog hop (link party) or to your blog.


  1. Post as many links as you like
  2. Family friendly posts only
  3. Old posts are welcome
  4. Comments are greatly appreciated
  5. Show fellow bloggers link love

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Party in Your PJs 189 and Features

Well, the holidays are over so I am officially ready for Spring!  Actually, our winter weather here in Northern Nevada has been mild so far but that can change at any time.

How was your Christmas, New Year's, Hanukkah, etc. celebrations?  Our Christmas was nice and we had all the kids and grandkids home except for Staci and her family--they live in North Carolina and Staci is also due any minute with a little girl!  Exciting!

Onto our Features from our last party:

A Grace Full Life  shared a tutorial to make a Great Birthday Gift Using Birthday Cards!
#shop, birthday card craft

3 Winks Design  shared a great Cookie Recipe Collection--cookies are good all year!

Artful Homemaking  gives us some terrific ideas for Mason Jar gifts!
This is a super easy recipe for peppermint sugar scrub and it makes great gifts!

If you were Featured, please grab the code below and add our button to your blog!

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Please follow your hosts on your choice of social media--let me know in the comments or on the SM app and I will follow back!

Thanks for stopping by! 

In Memory of Smores 2003--2016

Loving another, human or animal, is part of life for most of us.  It's what makes our lives worth living.  Memories are part of our lives, too, and thank goodness for the good memories!  We have our spouses or significant others, our parents, siblings, children, grandchildren, extended family, good friends, and so on.  These relationships help to shape who we are and make each day special (or a challenge lol).  Pets can add to the richness of our lives as well.  I have had many pets over the years and loved them all.  Some are just flashes of recognition or a fleeting memory from my very young childhood.  Others were part of my life for many years.  Dogs, cats,chickens, bunnies, fish, lizards, birds--they all are part of who I am.

 Smores as a youngster 2003

I am especially fond of poodles.  When I was in high school, we got our first miniature poodle named Snorky.  I was hooked on poodles after that!  Don't get me wrong, I love dogs and animals in general. I hate to read of an animal abused, neglected or abandoned.  Poodles do hold a special place in my heart.  

When my husband and I had been married just over a year and purchased our first house, we happened to know a woman here in town who had some poodle mix puppies (3/4 miniature poodle and 1/4 terrier) who needed homes.  We spent 16 years with Socks, so named because he was a parti-colored (not solid colored) and had tan feet that contrasted with his grayish-black fur on his body.  Socks was such a good dog.  As we had children and our house became more chaotic, he would just go behind the sofa or under my bed to escape all the noise.

After Socks passed away, I couldn't bring myself to get another dog for almost 8 years--I was too heartbroken.  I guess the price of love is heartbreak or pain at some point.

Smores liked to be comfy.

My husband knew I was beginning to think about getting another poodle so in May 2003, just before Mother's Day, he surprised me by taking me to a couple's home to see the 2 poodle puppies they had from a litter their female poodle had given birth to.  The pups were about 8 weeks old at that point and a male and female were still there.  This adorable puppy came running up to greet me with such a sweet look on his face as if to  say, "Hello!  I've been waiting for you!"  So that little boy went home with me that day.  I named him Smores since my 2 other poodles had names that began with "S".  Sam didn't fit, Simon didn't fit but Smores did!  Originally his name had been Ace with his previous family but I didn't think he was an "Ace", either.

Smores was my boy.  Even with all the kids in the house, he always wanted to be with me.  I was his mom.  I am sure many of you can relate to that.  Smores followed me everywhere.  If I sat down, he was in my lap.  When I was in bed, he had to be touching me; if I scooted over even 1/2 and inch, he would grunt and move over to make sure we were still touching lol.  I remember once when I was working the night shift on the Med-Surg Unit at the hospital, after I got the kids delivered to school, as usual I got into bed about 0900 to sleep.  Smores would be right there beside me.  Usually he slept near my tummy or if I was on my tummy he would lie on my back.  Well, this morning I was so tired I fell asleep on my back.  I woke up a few hours later and there was Smores with his head right next to mine on the pillow.  When he saw me looking at him, he looked away as if to say, "No, I'm not laying on the pillow, you are".  Good times.

 Ali Rose, Smores and I.

Smores didn't always like what I had to do, though.  When I was in nursing school, I had to travel almost 2 hours away from home once I got into the program.  The weeks that I had clinicals at the hospital, mental health facility, etc., I would have to be gone Monday thru Thursday.  Smores knew that I was leaving once he saw the suitcase come out and his anxiety would kick in.  When I would return home after several days, he would great me oh so happily.  Mom was home! 
Then, after the initial greeting, he would show his displeasure with me by ignoring me.  He wouldn't sit with me, wouldn't sleep with me.  By the next morning he felt he had tortured me enough and would go back to being my shadow.  So funny.  Dogs have little quirks and personalities just like humans do.  

Smores began to decline a bit in his 12th year.  He had bouts of pancreatitis but would always rally.  I took him to a specialist who wanted to do exploratory surgery but I was concerned that this might be too much for him.  I opted to watch his diet, treat symptoms along with our vet's recommendations and just enjoy life with Smores.  Towards December of 2015, he began not responding to treatment and was losing weight and seemed to be in pain.  Several pain meds were implemented (not all at once) but the last pain med we tried had side effects such as weakness and disorientation.  Smores would look at me with concern and confusion.  We knew the time was coming but it isn't an easy thing to face.

On January 2, 2016, we said good-bye to my sweet boy.  It was one of the hardest things I have ever done.  I cry as I type these words.  I know some would think it silly and say, "It's only a dog".  He was my dog and I loved him and he loved me.  His passing was hard on the whole family but my heart is still broken and will be till I am reunited with my boy again.

I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and not long after Smores had passed, an article similar to this one appeared in LDS Living magazine: 
The article that I read, "Animals and the Afterlife" (which I couldn't find a link to--sorry.  If anyone wants a copy I will gladly send it to you if you comment or email us (right-side bar) was an answer to my prayers. While I still missed and ached for my pup, it made me glad to know that he is waiting for me, along with my other beloved pets.

I don't believe that a loving Heavenly Father would send animals to this Earth to be loved and be part of our family and not allow us to be with them again.  I know some people believe differently, but for me, this makes perfect spiritual and logical sense. 

After Smores passed, our groomer sent us a handmade card with a verse I had never read before.  It is  very beautiful and so true.   If you are dealing with the loss of a pet, I hope this helps.  

Pawprints Left By You
Teri Harrison
You no longer greet me,
As I walk through the door. 
You're not there to make me smile,
To make me laugh anymore.
Life seems quiet without you, You were far more than a pet.
You were a family member, a friend
...a loving soul I'll never forget.
It will take time to heal--
For the silence to go away.
I still listen for you,
And miss you everyday.
You were such a great companion,
Constant, loyal and true.
My heart will always wear,
the pawprints left by you.

If you are struggling with the loss of a pet, please know that it is normal to grieve and if needed, please seek care.  A good friend, a clergy member, your vet or even a counselor or therapist might be needed to hear your thoughts and emotions and help you live a good life.


I miss Smores everyday but know I will be with him once again.

Thank you for stopping by.  Please feel free to leave a comment about a beloved pet from your life, if you like.

Sunday, December 31, 2017

Most Popular Posts of 2017

Happy New Year!  Wishing you a blessed 2018.  We appreciate your stopping by our little family blog and visiting us throughout the year.

  Also, we know each of you are busy with family, careers, responsibilities, etc. but if you would like to follow us on our social media accounts or even sign up for our newsletter (usually only 2 newsletters per month) Staci, Ali Rose, and I would sure be happy!

We want to share with you our Most Popular Posts of 2017. Those would be the ones that you, our readers, visited the most!

Reasons Why I Scrapbook.  This is our most popular post ever!  I love to scrapbook and Staci does, too.  I started this hobby when my oldest was a Senior in high school, as one of his graduation gifts.  I have made one for each child since and also have a family scrapbook.  It has great memories, photos, and is even part of our family history.  Staci has since begun scrapbooks for little Parker and will be making one for Oakli, once she makes her appearance anytime now.

This post is from a Halloween costume idea I had many years ago (and so is the photo).  Football Halloween Costumes were a great costume for our family of 5 boys and Staci as the cheerleader.  Not sure where the oldest 2 boys were when I took this photo....

Old-fashioned Thanksgiving Stuffing is a recipe from my husband's great-grandpa, who owned a diner in Payson, Utah many years ago.  The original recipe we were given had NO amounts for the ingredients so I just play it by ear..., um...taste?  It is very good!

Sugar cookies are so good and fun to make for holidays (Valentines, Easter, Halloween, Christmas) and we love this Bakery-style Sugar Cookie Icing recipe.  Tasty and easy!

Two Chicks and a Mom are Brand Ambassadors for Oriental Trading and Staci shared OT's products for her Christmas Decor this year.  They always have the cutest items.

Our Most Popular post this week has been this recipe from Ali Rose.  We will be making this tonight for New Year's Eve--Make Your Own Orange Julius.

Thanks for stopping by!  Have a great 2018!

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