The Last All Things Thursday Blog Hop and Features

Well, you know what they say, "All good things must come to an end." This is the Last All Things Thursday Blog Hop. (sniff, sniff)
I have loved checking in every week and seeing all the creative links you bring to the party. Truly inspiring! While we have all enjoyed the blog hop, it's time to shake things up a bit.
This week, besides revealing my new blog design by the talented Rebekah Louise Designs, I announced a new party that I'll be having at the same time and same night as the last one...Creative Ways Link Party. I want you to bring all your creative ways to the party just like you have been. I'm hoping that by just having a party on one blog, it will be much easier for me to promote you all on social media throughout the week. I sure hope you'll join me next week at 8pm! Are you ready to see the features from last week's party?
clockwise from top left:
Rope Bracelet by Paper and Fox
Painted Garden Stakes by The Painted Apron
Love Pillow by Howling at the Moon
Sun Dried Tomato Spinach Pasta by First Year Blog

 If you were featured this week, be sure to grab a button.

All Things with Purpose
Okay, it's time to link up those awesome projects you've been working on! We can't wait to see what you've brought to the party. Don't forget to visit some of the other links. Everyone loves a sweet comment!

By the way, Kristina of Mother's Niche, one of our co-hosts from this hop, is looking for contributors. If you are interested, you can get more information here!

Are you new to Posed Perfection? I'd love to connect with you!
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An InLinkz Link-up

2-Ingredient Fast Fudge

When my kids were little, we were given a cookbook designed specifically for kids. From time to time, they will take out this cookbook and whip up something from its pages. A couple of weeks ago, my daughter was quite insistent on making this 2 Ingredient Fast Fudge.
2 Ingredient Fast Fudge
Never one to turn down a chocolatey treat, we picked up the necessary ingredients at the store and got right to "work". I use the term "work" loosely, as these little morsels of fudge were hardly any work at all.
2 Ingredient Fast Fudge Process
2 Ingredient Fast Fudge

1 (16oz.) can prepared frosting (a chocolate variety)
1 (11oz.) bag milk chocolate chips
**optional chopped nuts, coconut or candy bars

In microwave-safe bowl, pour in chocolate chips and cook on high power for 1 minute. Stir and cook in 15 second increments until chocolate is smooth. Add in can of prepared chocolate frosting, stirring until combined. If desired, stir in optional mix-ins. Pour onto waxed paper. Place another sheet of wax paper on top and smooth out to 1/2 inch thickness (We accidentally spread ours out a bit too far). Place in refrigerator for 1 hour until chilled and firm. Remove from refrigerator and remove top waxed paper. Cut into squares and sprinkle with powdered sugar, if desired. (Store in covered container in refrigerator).

This creamy confection is a breeze to prepare and definitely cures the sweet tooth! Wouldn't this be a fun surprise for your kiddos to make for the special women in their lives for Mother's Day? This fudge would also make an excellent teacher's gift, as the end of the school year is quickly approaching.

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I'm linking up at some of these great parties and

More Changes to the Blog...A New Link Party

Hi friends! I hope you had a wonderful weekend. Ours was packed with fun! We had my daughter's last soccer game and the end-of-season party. If you follow on Instagram, you might have seen that my son flew his remote control airplane in his first competition and won 1st place in his class, beating out a bunch of older gentlemen who take this hobby pretty seriously. We also had a party celebrating my daughter's 4th grade Sunday School class moving up into the bigger kids' ministry at church. Like I said, it was packed with fun.

Besides all the celebrating, I worked on finishing up some things relative to the new blog design, updating profile pictures on social media, adding content on pages, etc. Another thing I worked on was laying the groundwork for a new link party. What?!? You heard me right, or maybe you "read" me right. As you may already know, the weekly All Things Thursday Blog Hop that I have been a co-host of since last July is ending this week. The gals at All Things with Purpose are re-branding and going to take it back to a link party. While I'm sad to see it go, I am excited for them, and I'm ready to strike out on my own too.
Creative Ways Link Party
So, my new party will be called the Creative Ways Link Party. We are all creative people, made in the very image of the Creator of the universe. That creativity shows up in many ways... preparing meals for your family, repurposing items, decorating your home, throwing a fun party for your kids, baking up delicious goodies and countless other ways. This party is a celebration of those Creative Ways and a perfect excuse for sharing them with others to inspire and be inspired.

I am beyond thrilled to host my own party! I have loved co-hosting the blog hop and having you all come here to link up your creations each week. I hope you'll continue to come back here on Wednesday nights to share what you've been up to.  The first Creative Ways Link Party will be Wednesday, May 7th at 8pm. I hope you'll join us this week for the last ATTBH at 8pm too.
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Food for the Soul ~ Psalm 90:14

As part of our Bible time in school, we are reading through the bible from the beginning...reading two chapters from the Old Testament and one from the New Testament each day. What struck me this week, as we are in Deuteronomy, was the Lord's need to remind the Israelites (through Moses) all He had done for them, as they continued to stray and turn their backs from them. If they would have just found ways to thank Him for all He had done instead of complaining and whining about how things weren't the way they wanted them to be, their lives would have been overflowing with joy and things might have gone better for them. Ann Voskamp of One Thousand Gifts fame, has found the key to joy...listing daily the gifts that the Lord has graciously given her...the size of the gift doesn't matter...from the smell of bread baking in the oven to someone being healed from a crippling disease. She has found that by listing the gifts or graces, her heart becomes even more thankful and her life becomes more joyful. Oh, that I would just be satisfied with the unfailing love of Jesus!

"Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love,
that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days."
Psalm 90:14
So, in the spirit of listing gifts, I thought I'd just share what's been a pretty good week around here:

~  Our Wednesday Women of Grace group with 4th grade girls went well, with most of the girls participating in the bible lesson and being more respectful to us leaders and to each other. (This is saying a lot. We want to reach these girls' hearts for Jesus so badly and some weeks it's just plain hard.)
~  This weekend my daughter's soccer team finished up their season with a win, and then we celebrated with an end-of-season party.
~  Another exciting thing happened too. My son, who has been flying r/c planes for fun for a couple of years, entered a competition this weekend and won 1st place in his class. Although he was nervous and quite frankly, scared to wreck a plane again (it really shook him up the first time it happened), he pushed through the fear of failure and succeeded. Despite being the youngest out at the airfield by a long shot, he stood tall and got it done.
~  Finally, my new blog design, which I love, was finalized and installed this week. It was long overdue and I'm so glad to have it finished. It feels like getting a new hairstyle that makes you look 10 years younger ;-)

So, it's been one of those weeks where you get to the end of it and take a deep breath in and breathe out praise to the Father who gives us good gifts. Of course, things don't have to go our way for the gifts from God to be good, but it sure helps sometimes. Tell me something good from your week!

Thanks so much for stopping by! Your bloggy friendship is a gift to me!
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Stuffed Pepper Skillet Casserole

Last week, a sweet friend put a message out that she needed to get rid of some green bell peppers. It seems she had gotten extras in her Bountiful Baskets order. Never one to turn down free things, I texted her that I could surely find something to do with them. I ended up making this Stuffed Pepper Skillet Casserole. With our family of four, we ate it for dinner and even had it for lunch a couple of days.
Stuffed Pepper Skillet Casserole
A long time ago, a neighbor (who happened to have 6 kids) introduced me to "Meat and Rice" for dinner. Basically you cook up the meat in a big skillet, add in some canned tomatoes and other liquid and uncooked rice, put the lid on it for a bit until the rice soaks up the liquid, sprinkle with cheese and it's done. Clearly, with this many mouths to feed and a busy schedule, this was a great go-to meal that even her older kids could prepare. This is a variation of that "recipe"; I just added in the peppers.
Stuffed Pepper Skillet Casserole Ingredients
Here's what you need: ground beef, chopped onion, chopped bell peppers, long grain rice (not instant), Worcestershire Sauce, canned tomatoes, tomato sauce, shredded cheese, water, and some seasonings.
Stuffed Pepper Skillet Casserole
Stuffed Pepper Skillet Casserole
(serves 6-8)

1- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 cup chopped onion
1-1 1/2 cups chopped bell pepper
1 lb. ground beef
1 1/2 cups long-grain rice (not instant), uncooked
1-2 Tbsp. Worcestershire Sauce
1 15 oz. can chopped tomatoes
1 small can tomato sauce
1 cup water (or beef or chicken broth)
1 cup shredded cheese
seasoning for meat

In large lidded skillet, heat olive oil and cook onions and peppers until tender. Add in the ground beef and seasonings, cooking until done. Drain the meat mixture and return to skillet. Add the tomatoes, tomato sauce, water, and Worcestershire sauce; bring to a simmer. Pour in uncooked rice and stir to combine. Cover with lid and reduce heat to low. Allow to cook for 20-30 minutes, or until rice is cooked. After 20 minutes, stir the rice and add some additional water if needed. Stir every few minutes to ensure rice doesn't stick to the bottom. When it is finished, turn off heat and top the casserole with shredded cheese. Allow the cheese to melt, then serve.

What I love about this meal besides the simple ingredients is that you only dirty up one pan. Yep, one pan! What's not to love about that? Also, I don't think I could ever get my family to eat real stuffed bell peppers. They would probably eat the filling and discard the pepper. This way they are getting the veggies, just in tiny pieces ;-)

Need some other budget-friendly, family dinner ideas?
Creamy Chicken Florentine Pasta
Green Chile Pasta
Souped Up Stroganoff

I'm linking up at some of these great parties and

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Ch...Ch..Ch..Changes....A New Blog Design

Well, I guess you can kind of see what kind of changes have been going on around here. Yep, I finally made some changes to the blog.... a brand-spankin' new blog design...with a lot of help ;-)

For quite some time, I've been wanting to do something different with the blog, but didn't really know where to start and how much money to budget for it. Then, I won a giveaway for a free header on The Dedicated House after she had had her blog design revamped by the talented Rebekah of Rebekah Louise Designs. I just knew that winning the header giveaway was the push I needed to change things up. So, I contacted Rebekah and asked her to do a complete makeover on my blog, since she was already going to be doing the header.
I literally gave her these two pictures I had pinned, said I wanted some script and printing in the header and she went to town. Her first two designs were close to what I was wanting. Then, I just told her what I liked about the two designs and she changed it up to the header you see today.
Next, she said she needed a new profile picture and my "about me" blurb. This was the most painful part of the process because of my indecisiveness, and it's hard for me to get a picture of myself that I like well enough to put it out on the world wide web. So, I enlisted the help of my kids to take some pictures of me on Easter. Of course, I took a little time to "ham" it up.
Just to show you how badly I needed this update to the blog, here are the before screenshots...pretty sad.
After a whole bunch of emails back and forth (mostly due to my indecisiveness), she has come up with this beautiful design. I am absolutely thrilled and feel just like when you leave the beauty shop with a brand new hairstyle after feeling frumpy for a long time. Tell me I'm not the only one who waits too long between hair appointments ;-) Which reminds me, I need to call my hairdresser today!

Rebekah took my jumbled up thoughts and turned them into something beautiful. I am so grateful! If you're in need of a blog makeover, I highly recommend her. She was a breeze to work with and was so supportive throughout the whole process. Thank you, Rebekah!

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All Things Thursday Blog Hop # 42, Features, and a Steeped Tea Giveaway

Hi Friends! I hope you had a wonderful Easter. We're so glad you're here to party with us again this week. You'll be seeing some changes coming to the blog very soon and I'm so excited to share them with you. One of the changes will involve this All Things Thursday Blog Hop. Stay tuned!
With Mother's Day right around the corner, I've got a fabulous giveaway to offer to you! Up for grabs is a gorgeous Steeped Tea Teapot with mesh infuser, Perfect Pot Spoon, and an assortment of delicious loose teas! For a better description of the prize, you can check out the giveaway here or just scroll down a bit to enter to win!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
You all continue to amaze me with your creativity and ingenuity. Here were some of the posts that caught my eye from last week's party:
clockwise from top left:
What Can You Make with a Pair of Socks by the Crafty Blog Stalker
Orange Bundt Cake by Zu Haus at Home
Old Deck Wood Laundry Crate by My Love 2 Create

 If you were featured this week, be sure to grab a button.

All Things with Purpose
Okay, it's time to link up those awesome projects you've been working on! We can't wait to see what you've brought to the party. Don't forget to visit some of the other links. Everyone loves a sweet comment!
All Things Thursday Blog Hop
Are you new to Posed Perfection? I'd love to connect with you!

Just in Time for Mother's Day...A Steeped Tea Teapot Giveaway

What do you think of when Mother's Day rolls around? All the things she's done for you? All the times she put herself on the back burner to make sure you had what you needed? How about all the boo-boos she's doctored up and broken hearts she's tended to? Besides all those things, I think of pampering and beauty. I think of dainty china and tea parties. Even though I don't do many tea parties or go to High Tea much, I do associate the two with Mother's Day. I must say, I do enjoy a good cuppa tea from time to time!
My SIL's sweet friend, Nancy of Steeped Tea, sent me some delicious tea a while back to try. It came at the perfect time...just as we were suffering from sinus infections and colds. My husband drank several cups of the Jenna Jubilee Fruit Tea in an effort to soothe his sore throat and get to feeling better. As I was nursing everyone back to health, I couldn't help but think that delicious tea might be the perfect item for a giveaway.

I love the idea behind Steeped Tea. From the founder, "This company began as a passionate search for the perfect cup of tea. Along the way we discovered that the secret was who you shared it with." 
So, in that spirit, we want to share Steeped Tea with all of you! One of you will win this adorable teapot and some other goodies!
The winner of this Steeped Tea Giveaway will get:

Blue Key West Teapot {This 6-cup ceramic teapot has a built-in mesh infuser}. 
Perfect Pot Spoon {stainless and dishwasher safe - each scoop is 4 teaspoons}
1(1.75 oz) pkg. Chocolate Almond Torte Black Tea {Almond & chocolate dessert that fits perfectly in your cup.}
1(1.75 oz) pkg. Iron Goddess Oolong Tea {Most famous of all the Oolong teas}
1(1.75 oz) pkg. Very Cranberry Green Tea {Green Tea fuses with cranberry, papaya and mango for a bold taste.}

All together, this is an $80 value! It would make a perfect Mother's Day gift either for yourself or the special tea drinker in your life.
Did you happen to notice that the teapot and tea towel are my signature colors? Too bad I can't win the giveaway ;-) This giveaway will run through Saturday night. We'll choose a winner on Sunday so that she can hopefully receive this before Mother's Day! Be sure to share this giveaway with your friends!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
“If you are cold, tea will warm you;
if you are too heated, it will cool you;
If you are depressed, it will cheer you;
If you are excited, it will calm you.” 
I'm linking up at some of these great parties and

How Does Your Garden Grow?

Mary, Mary, quite contrary, how does your garden grow? Well, it's springtime, and for many would-be gardeners, that means it's time to start planting for a summer harvest. I'll admit, I'm not a big gardener. I'm not really a fan of all the dirt and weeds and maintenance that encompass the life of a gardener. I certainly appreciate the fruit of all that labor, but so far, I have not been one to spend a lot of time with my hands in the dirt. However, starting my Spring Garden is one of the things at the top of my To-Do list.
Fall Tower Garden
"Why start a garden if you don't really enjoy the prep work, the planting and the tending?" you might ask. Well, the truth is, I get bogged down in the logistics of things. I asked for years for hubby to build a raised bed garden. "We'll have to move all the sprinkler heads and rework the sprinkler system," he argued. Picture me with my head hanging low. It's not a hill I'm willing to die on...
Green Beans on Tower Garden
So, last year, my dad gave me a Tower Garden to try out. It's an aeroponic vertical growing garden that doesn't require any dirt, doesn't grow weeds, and won't require us to redo our landscaping. You purchase nutrients to add to the water that gets pumped up from the reservoir. While it's not free to garden this way, it's been a bit cheaper than building the raised beds, hauling in dirt, and moving sprinkler lines.
Choosing Seeds for Tower Garden
I didn't get started until August of last year, but I was really excited about the growing process, which I also used as an excuse to teach the kids about botany.
Seedlings to put on the Tower Garden
I started the seeds in rock wool at the beginning of August and was planting seedlings within a couple of weeks. Here's what I planted on this little tower: tomatoes, green leaf lettuce, gourmet red lettuce, spinach, cauliflower, broccoli, cilantro, parsley, dill, jalapeño peppers, bell pepper mix, cucumbers, yellow squash, zucchini.
Seedlings in Tower Garden
Most of the plants just started taking off; however, some never made it beyond the seedling.
Tower Garden
Each week, the anticipation grew as more leaves sprouted.
Jalapeño on Tower Garden
Then, little buds formed. Flowers and tiny fruit.
Tower Garden
It continued to grow...almost all of the original seedlings grew into beautiful plants.
Harvesting Lettuce on Tower Garden
I harvested some of the tender lettuce pretty early on.
Green Bean Harvest from Tower Garden
Then, the beans sprouted and produced a handful or more a week.
Tower Garden
I watched the squash start blooming, then die off, always keeping the large gorgeous leaves.
Large Squash Plants on Tower Garden
The cucumbers started growing...a couple actually matured enough to eat. The tomatoes produced lots of flowers, and some little tomatoes, but soon the temperatures cooled off too much to ripen them.
Tower Garden
I had a couple of large broccoli and cauliflower plants that probably would have produced some delicious fruit, if not for the frost that took them out in early November.
Full Grown Tower Garden
Last year's Tower Garden experience was truly an experiment for me. I learned a lot about what works and what doesn't, I learned about protecting the plants from the elements and about pollination, and I learned that I really do love the nurturing and pruning part of gardening. I am so excited to get going on it this week, to start those seeds and see what delicious bounty I will have this season.

Are you a gardener? Have you already started your seedlings? How does your garden the ground, raised bed or containers? I'd love to hear about your gardening adventures and experiments!
I'm linking up at some of these great parties and

Food for the Soul ~ Resurrection Sunday ~ Romans 6:8-11

Wishing you and your family a wonderful Easter! May your day be filled with the hope that can only come from our Risen Lord! So thankful to be alive in Christ! He is Risen! He is Risen, indeed!