Just Stacey J. bio picture
  • Never apologize for your own sense of beauty.
    Nobody can tell you what you should love.
    Do what you do brazenly and unapologetically.
    You cannot build your sense of aesthetics on a consensus.
    ~CJ Nicolai

  • Have a seat. Grab a cup of coffee. There's so much to share here. Food. Pictures. Stories. Laughter. Tears. Joy. Beauty. Family. Friends. People I just met. I like to find the magic in the ordinary. I like to make the ugly not so much. This is my life.... come on in!
  • The Days of Our Lives….

    November 2014
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Too Many To Count

Blessings that is. There are too many to list, so I’ll sum it up quickly.

I’m thankful for…..

My life.

Everything in it.

Everybody in it.

I’m thankful to be able to witness how beautiful life can be.

To feel true joy.

To be able to feel raw pain.

To see the sunrise and watch it set and know, no matter what happened that day, I will see it all over again tomorrow.

I’m thankful for it all.

 

Keeping Up Old Traditions

Thanksgiving is just a few days away, and I’ve already started preparing. I get very nostalgic around this time of year. It’s really hard not to. I absolutely wouldn’t trade the way I celebrate now and who I am surrounded by, but sometimes I can’t help but miss some of the people I grew up celebrating with.

I spent my childhood with my german grandmother during holidays. She was a tough lady with sparkle of orneriness. She would never take much flak from anyone. Ever. She was tiny. I towered over her by more than a foot. But her tininess was not a force to be reckoned with, as she spent most days in high heels and lipstick with perfectly manicured nails while driving a huge white Lincoln with her little head barely over the wheel, cigarette daintily between her fingers,  all the while throwing around a german curse word or two, and maybe some in english as well. And then she would chuckle.

She was also the best Atari player I ever met.

We had a soft spot for one another. My whole life. She would never let me misbehave, and always put me in my place,  but she did have a soft spot.

I don’t regret much in my life, but I do regret not letting her teach me to cook a few things. I didn’t really cook until she was gone. And I wish that wouldn’t have been the case. So I think if I learn something from that…..I need to force my kid to learn things from me and his grandparents,  he will appreciate it later.

During Thanksgiving, most of my life I ate only a couple things. Dinner rolls. Cranberries from the can and dinna kucha. Dinna kucha is a German dessert. Finding a recipe for it is nearly impossible, as many of the old world recipes are passed down through the families. Kucha is bread in German. This one happens to be a sweet bread.  Kind of like a white coffee cake. We had this for everything. For holidays. For weddings. For funerals. It was always there.  And it reminds me of my grandmother.

I had a family reunion this past summer and I got to spend some extra time with my grandmother’s sister. Who, as the years pass by, looks so much like my grandmother, that sometimes it takes my breath away when I see her. I asked her to show me/ teach me a little bit about German desserts and kucha.

And so I gave it a try. I don’t think I put things in the right order, but my mother assured me, that me being me, it would be fine if I put my own spin on it. As that’s what I do with everything in my life. I do it my way. My grandmother would have probably laughed and cussed at that at the same time. Hopefully she would have liked it too.

This Kid

Has my heart.

I got to play tag with 8 of his friends. I’m not as good at tag as I used to be. But then I got to eat cafeteria food right after that. I was never good at eating cafeteria food. (I never once ate hot lunch until I was in my 30′s.)

Was a good day.

Homemade Amaretto

I have tried making most liqueurs.  I have some limoncello cooking up right now, and Bailey’s will be next. Those are my favorite and taste the best. But this last week I tried something new.

I will admit, I’m not an amaretto connoisseur, I don’t drink it all that often (a nice glass of a tempranillo wine is normally my go to.) However, the holidays are coming up, and I have a lot of visitors that like something different. So I made this for Thanksgiving. Just for a little something different. You can also make your own sour mix, but I think it was a little sweet, so I just mix mine with a little club soda, lemon juice and top it with a cherry. Give it try. Make it for yourself. Make it for your friends. It’s super easy.

Curly Locks

It’s been a while since I’ve seen this sweet family… and I have to tell you, they sure have changed!!! The sweet curls bounce with the little one’s personality. He’s missing more teeth and getting so tall. Oh how I love to watch them grow!

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