July 1st: Happiness Is…

Hey everyone!

This month I want to get your input about what makes YOU happy! It’s easy, send me an email with what happiness is to you! 

For instance:

Happiness is…


…snuggling with my boy while watching a movie he has picked out. It’s not often that we get to do this anymore now that he is officially a teenager, so when he makes a suggestion you betcha I make a big deal about it(in a cool way of course). I grab some yummy snacks for us, a cozy blanket, and enjoy the time we have together. It brings back memories of when he was a little guy and would curl up on my lap to watch his favorite shows. Oh how I miss those days and cherish the ones like in the picture. ❤️

-Amanda Gayle(Alabama, USA)

Simple! Now, of course you can write as little or as much as I did. The point is, with all the ugly and bad things going on in this world it would do us some good to see some happy things for a change. Send me an email at nightowlkitchen@yahoo.com with the following: 

*Please include your name, State/Provence and country. 

*Include the heading: “Happiness Is…” in your email, along with a short blurb about why it makes you happy.

*You may include one photo. 

*Any recipes need to include a link back to the original site, if possible(unless the recipe has been passed down through your family, which is adored here at Night Owl Kitchen!) Kids are welcomed to get in on this, I know several like to get in the kitchen these days, don’t be shy. Share with us your favorite summer treats! 

*You can share anything that has inspired you: a quote, a song, a book, a movie…keeping it family friendly of course! 😉

Each week I will choose a selection to share. Let’s spread some happiness this month! 

Have a blessed 4th of July weekend!!!

It’s Been 10 Years…

I grew up not wanting to have any kids. In fact I prayed it wouldn’t happen, mostly because I wanted to pursue a career, have my freedom and not have to be responsible for anyone but myself. I had my life somewhat planned out from a fairly young age. I wanted to do the three F’s: Learn to play the flute(check), Learn French (partial check), and go to France(never happened). It’s amazing how thing work out, once our family moved to Brazil everything stopped making sense. I didn’t know what I wanted to study in college, so I didn’t go. After we came home I floundered for a couple of years unsure of what I wanted to do.

I finally got a job at Hobby Lobby as a cashier, it was a love/hate relationship. I loved working in my favorite store but I hated being stuck behind a register for 10–12 hours a day. After some headbutting with the manager I wound up leaving and spent a month looking for a new job to no avail. The following year I never dreamed I would have wanted something so much that I was willing to give my life for…I became a Mom. It wasn’t by choice to become a single Mom, but that’s how it worked out 🙂

G–Man has certainly kept life interesting for me! There have been days where I wonder what I ever did to deserve this little crazy mess I call “mini me”.

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Sure it was a rocky beginning, trying to figure out how to adjust. Sacrificing my wants for his needs, there were a lot of bumps and potholes along the way that I kept stumbling over and falling into. But the one thing I never regret is choosing to keep him. I had to learn how to be his Mom and do everything in my power to make sure he would never be in want.

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curls…curls…curls!!!

I miss these curls, they were soft and just melted my heart! He’s the closest thing to a green eyed redhead that I could get 🙂

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When he was 3 I was convinced that everything I was as a child was amplified by 100,000! Oh what a handful he was! Climbing on everything, coloring on the walls, painting the carpet, baseboard and part of the wall in the dining room with bright fuchsia fingernail polish(it’s still there by the way, just covered up by a lovely Brazilian cabinet). There was the shampoo incident on his bedroom, apparently he wanted to clean a dirty spot on the floor, and oh the joys of summer time in the pool, back when I could still go out. He stopped taking naps at this point and the adjustments were not in my favor 🙂

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Almost overnight he grew up…

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…he was becoming his own little person!

Of course I didn’t want to let go, I held on as tight as I possibly could! That sounds worse than I actually meant it 😉 But I definitely couldn’t wait to see what kind of a little person he would grow into. Would he take up art like me? Would he be interested in Legos? Would his love for bugs ever end?! The years passed, we started homeschooling when he was 3 yrs old, the very first thing he learned was how to spell his name. I wanted to make sure he could do it himself in case someone wasn’t sure how to spell it for him(and believe me the variations we got to see on his Sunday School papers over the years have made us giggle). However, we officially didn’t use actual curriculum till he was K5. Yes I boogered up his ABC’s at first, teaching the names of the letters instead of the sounds. We were learning together, trying to figure out what would work best for him and eventually finding out he would be a fairly average student (FTW=for the win)!

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Don’t ever let the smiles fool you, he and I are so much alike we butt heads constantly…but the one thing I have always strived to make sure he understood was that I love him with every part of my being! It may not always come out in the loving soft tones of Mrs. June Cleaver, but he’s become my world in ways I never thought someone ever could!

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His humor is what I love the most, we make each other laugh over the silliest things! He says that my laugh makes him laugh 🙂 But it’s the other way around, quite honestly!

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And if I could bottle up a single drop of his energy I would keep it for myself to use in my old age. He’s got a zaniness about him that’s questionable and endearing at the same time! Well, he is mine after all 😉 *looks up at the above picture*  Yep, he’s definitely mine…

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He calls his Grandpa “Dad”, since he’s the closest thing to a Dad he’s ever had.

It’s no lie, he’s shot up over these last few years. My little baby is no more 😦 Gone are those days of me carrying him around on my hip and rocking him to sleep. Now he’s this person with ideas, dreams, and becoming aware of the things around him. His world is expanding, as are his interests! From ninjas, to Legos, taking pictures, making videos, and showing me a thing or two on the computer!

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He’s hit the big 1–0! He has arrived!!!

I knew this year was going to be exceptional, I just never thought it would get here so quickly! His birthday was special, filled with lots of memories and reflection. We don’t do big parties,  we keep things simple and low key with just us here at home. His request every year is for a strawberry cake with Neapolitan ice cream. The cake recipe has been in our family for three generations. It was my favorite birthday cake year after year and now it’s his! 

(Ok, I know y’all are dying to see it lol)

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I opted out of candles this year, simply because they never seem to work right unless you get the extra long funky candles!

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It really is a beautiful cake once you get a pieces served up, but it tastes even better! So easy to make, yet without fail something always goes wrong with the cake. It’s been that way since his first birthday, and this year wasn’t any different. But as always it came out just fine on the second try (ugh) and if I’m not mistaken, there are only three pieces left! It’s that big of a hit!!

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And the night just wouldn’t be complete without Lego Ninjago toys and Halo Megablok sets. Followed by Despicable Me 2 with pizza and strawberry soda. Indeed, I have been blessed by one amazing little boy. One I’m beyond thankful that I have been given. He’s brought a lot of joy and intrigue to our lives 🙂

Happy Birthday to my little Irishman!

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Through the years…2004-2014

Goodbye September…

Hard to believe that this is the last day of September. It has certainly been a full month, so thankful for everyone who has helped in spreading PCOS Awareness this month, for joining me speaking out and making sure pictures and articles get passed around. Just because this awareness month is ending doesn’t mean the work is done. We live with this on a daily basis and every day we can help make a difference in another woman’s life by spreading the word. At least once a week from here on out I will be posting on Health Check Tuesday/Teal Tuesday continuing this good fight against Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. Please join me on Tuesdays, post your pictures, testimonies, questions, or links to more information about PCOS. If you don’t have a local support group, like me, let’s come together on here once a week and create our own support group. Encouraging one another to not give up, to not lose hope or sight of our dreams and goals. Let’s all welcome October with renewed vigor and positive outlook as the year winds down to a close.

Last week proved to be terrible for me, not motivated to do really anything for the blog or for fall. That’s just how things go some times. But this week I’m pulling out some of our favorite flavors of fall, trying out new recipes that I have found recently, and finish up my fall bulletin board. Most of it is handmade decor, free printable items that I was able to get in black and white and color it myself. My son has enjoyed it so far and is helping him to work harder in school 🙂 I don’t plan to change it up for a while, I might add some turkeys later on but for now it’s good the way it is.

In a couple of weeks I’m going to be baking up a lot of goodies for a Missions Conference that I’m attending. Right now I’m making my final decisions on what to take (leaning more toward some pumpkin scones to add to the snack table and making a simple chocolate sheet cake with homemade frosting on top as a dessert). Everything I plan to make will definitely make its way to this blog along with recipe reviews and even trying out some “new” vintage recipes to ring in the autumn season! So get ready for another fun and full month!!

Happy fall and have a blessed day!