Friday, December 30, 2011

Something New: French Dip

At the suggestion of my middle sis, I prepared this dish for friends Wednesday evening. It was a last minute suggestions so we attempted to cook the meat on HIGH for 3.5-4hours, instead of the suggested 7 hour process on low. The taste was delicious, but the meat was not close to being tender, as I imagine it is with the low setting process.  All the reviews say so!

Give it a try! It's super simple, but don't make it last minute like I attempted - I think the results will speak for themselves. Delish!

Easy Slow Cooker French Dip


    * 4 pounds rump roast
    * 1 (10.5 ounce) can beef broth
    * 1 (10.5 ounce) can condensed French onion soup
    * 1 (12 fluid ounce) can or bottle beer
    * 6 French rolls
    * 2 tablespoons butter


  1. Trim excess fat from the rump roast, and place in a slow cooker. Add the beef broth, onion soup and beer. Cook on Low setting for 7 hours.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  3. Split French rolls, and spread with butter. Bake 10 minutes, or until heated through.
  4. Slice the meat on the diagonal, and place on the rolls. Serve the sauce for dipping.  

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Graduation Party

In honor of Mr. McGoo's graduation, I threw (with SUBSTANTIAL help from my mom and middle sis) a graduation party open house for the hubs! It was great!!! Mom and sis did so much to make the evening fantastic for all. Mom took care of the house and edibles, while sis did all the decor and even made the invitation.

You definitely want to check out the awesome photos from the event... they can be found on my sister's blog: Kee Creative. Go check them out!

Thursday, December 22, 2011


Three and a half years ago, my hubby and I made a dramatic change. We left the DINK* world and became a SINK* family. Instead, Mr. McGoo began to pursue his college degree and work for the Univeristy of Memphis as the manager for the men's soccer team, which provided the funds for his schooling.

I am amazed that we are now standing on the other side of that journey, 3.5 years later! Mr. McGoo graduated cum laude from The University of Memphis last Saturday, December 17th. To say I am a proud wife is an absolute understatement!!!

As I waited with our family for the graduation ceremony to begin, I began to think over the past 3.5 years and all that God has done in and through this dramatic change in our life.

For example:
  • He provided a way financially for Mr. McGoo to go through his position with U of M soccer.
  • During the summer Mr. McGoo had time and availability to go to Ethiopia with our church (twice & on winter break) - an event God used to change my husband spiritually forever as well as benefit our marriage relationship.
  • I came home every night to a man with renewed passions, interests, and desires - saying goodbye to the less than excited man that rested at home after a long, boring day at the office.
  • We were never without while living (and continuing to live) as a SINK family.

There is much more I can testify to, but the underlying theme for all is GOD IS GOOD, HE IS IN CONTROL, and HE IS FAITHFUL! Thinking through it all brought me to tears - in awe of God's faithfulness for Mr. McGoo and me.

Here are some shots from the big day!

Granddaddy, Mr. McGoo, Grams
Mr. & Mrs. McGoo
Grams and niece, Grace
Grace pointing out Mr. McGoo's name in the program
Mr. McGoo and nephew, Tristan

*DINK = Double Income No Kids
*SINK = Single Income No Kids

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

20 Months

One more trimester of school complete! Saturday I took my final skills checkoff for the hardest class I've yet to meet in nursing school: Basic Skills of Nursing. With the completion of the final, I wrapped up one more trimester.

My grades:
  • A - Essentials for Professional Nursing (3 credit hours)
  • B - Basic Skills in Nursing (4 credit hours)

I've never worked so hard for a B, and considering full time work and life outside of that, I definitely consider this trimester a _______ (cue photo below)!

That photo was too cute to pass up!

I really could not have done it without my study group. We definitely keep each other accountable. If you don't stay on top of the material, it quickly gets on top of you. Our study group works together to try to stay ahead of the game or at least on schedule. They have been a blessing and I look forward to tackling next trimester with them.

However, we are now stepping into our MUCH NEEDED short break. As of today, we have 15 days until we report back to campus for our Medication Dosage Competency Exam - January 4th. Then classes begin the very next day and a brutal schedule greets us. I know we are all looking forward to the next 15 days with our family, friends, and simple down time.

20 months to go!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Stomach Bug

Last weekend, Mr. McGoo and I experienced the worst stomach bug ever. One that I've learned has wrecked havoc on multiple families within our network. It's the nasty coming out of both ends kind of bug and it was horrible! I wouldn't wish it on anyone!

Mr. McGoo came down with it Saturday night and fought it through Monday. I felt 'under the weather" Monday and attempted to get well as soon as possible with much rest and Niquil. It seemed to work because by Monday evening I felt good to go.... unfortunately 430am Tuesday became a new story - the bug hit me in full force. Yuck!

So the McGoo household waned sickness from Saturday night through Wednesday/Thursday! No fun. Actually it was quite miserable to say the least.

But before the sickness unfolded, we spent Friday night at my company's awesome Christmas party - always a fun and festive occasion. I thought I'd share a few shots from that evening. Enjoy.

Before party pic at the casa
Boot wearing ladies of the party
The Dawsons - a few of our favs

Mr. McGoo was picked to be a "dancing" elf in a game we played!
Mr. McGoo learns the elf "will dance"
My fabulous friend - Shan

And to give you a better glimpse of the reality of my life... here is a typical progression in McGoo photos. My attempt was to get a photo together and it took this long to get a "good" result. He's a mess. See for yourself:


Friday, December 9, 2011

Date Night

Last Friday (Dec 2nd), Mr. McGoo invited me on a date. He planned it all and invited me to join him, at our home! I couldn't have been more thrilled to spend some quality time with my handsome man - all the while being home together, which is a rare event lately.

The Date Night included Mr. McGoo's homemade sweet and delicious chili, a fire, Christmas music, and holiday treats. It was perfect.

We enjoyed good conversation and quality time while cracking and opening pecans. We made chocolate covered pecans, sugar cookies, Reese's Peanut Butter Cup Temptations, and heavenly hash. We made and put up a simple Advent calendar on our refrigerator. Good stuff!

The most interesting part of the evening was the moment Mr. McGoo presented me with ROASTED CHESTNUTS. My response, I believe after I asked "what are those", was "those are actually real?" I never thought much more about them beyond singing the line in the Christmas song. They are real, however, and Mr. McGoo made some for me to try. I am thankful that I can say, I've had roasted chestnuts, but that's as far as I'm taking it. I'm not a fan of their taste.

Then I forced Mr. McGoo to pose by the fire with them - it seemed only fitting! :)

Roasted Chestnuts by the Open Fire - seriously!
A poor attempt to catch us and the tree
Dexter and me hanging out while talking to Mr. McGoo
Advent Calendar created for the frig

Thursday, December 1, 2011


I fell off the wagon with my "thankful for" posts... school and work and preparations for Thanksgiving travels became too much and something had to give... I chose the blog. It probably will continue to be that way for the most part until I get past my final check-off for school (2 final exams to go & one MAJOR skills check-off)... end date is Tuesday, December 13th. I'll be "free" for a couple weeks starting Wednesday, December 14th morning! Whoo hoo!

Thanksgiving was fabulous due to the fact that I completely unplugged for 4 days and had some quality time with Mr. McGoo. No internet connection and minimal technology. The days were composed of travel, family, food, fellowship, rest, fun, and reading.

I took the Wednesday before Thanksgiving off from work to use the time to clean house - something that had been neglected recently - and prepare for our travels to Lexington, KY. We left Memphis about 315pm with our buddy Steve and niece, Grace. Our time in KY was good and a needed break from the typical pace of Mr. McGoo and my life lately.

We really enjoyed visiting with family and having extra time with our niece. The highlight of the trip was taking Grace to tour part of Claiborne Farms. It was a really cool experience.

Some photos of our Thanksgiving adventures: