Sunday, September 19, 2010

Easy Great Veggies

I read so many impressive blogs of great, creative cooks who write their wonderful recipes and take the time to post pictures of their creations.  Someone was thinking of me when she said, "I only have a kitchen because it came with the house."  I think my little band of followers are all good cooks, which makes me a little embarrassed to even think about posting a recipe.  But here it is:   

I wish I could be one of those people who love veggies.  They are so beautiful.  I do love my veggies Barefoot Contessa style.  It works for just about any vegetable you like.  I cut them in bite-sized pieces, place on a cookie sheet and drizzle or spritz with a little olive oil.  Season with your favorite herbs and spices.  I'm such a minimalist when it comes to the kitchen that I usually rely on salt, pepper, and garlic powder, and toss with my hands.  Roast them at 425 degrees for about 20 or 25 minutes (give or take). 

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Little Man Meets Baby Doll

I wanted to share this wonderful sequence of pictures of our Little Man.  This was the first time he had ever seen a baby doll.  When I need to smile, these pictures always do it for me.

Whooaa! Now what do I do?

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Yer sorta' cute!

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Who ARE you??
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Cat got yer tongue??

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Somene to play with! And she's little'ern me!
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Wednesday, September 15, 2010


I love reading blogs. It's fun to get to peek into other people's lives.  It feels like having permission to be a fly on their wall .   Everytime I read a post, it makes me think of something I want to say.  You know...more than a comment.  Maybe I've lived so long that everything in every place reminds me of a moment.  Kelly, of Kelly's Thoughts & Ramblings, often does that to me.  Today I read a post of hers with a picture of a scorpion.  They always give me the heebie jeebies.  And there went my mind into memories of long ago.  My first encounter with one of the boogers was when I was 16.  We had just moved into a new house.  On the first night in my new bedroom when I climbed between my sheets, I thought I had been stabbed by a needle.  I jumped up, turned on the light, threw back the covers...and screamed.  My mother came running, and tried to calm hysterical me.  It wasn't working.  In  her wisdom, which rarely failed,  she got out the World Book so that we could read about scorpions.  I never thought to ask her, but I assume she was looking for something to show me that people do not die from scopion stings.  She read, I sobbed.  I was SUCH a hypochondriac.  I'll never forget the last sentence:  "Scorpion stings are rarely deadly."   That obviously meant that some of the time, some people died.  My mother stayed up the rest of the night with me.  I didn't want to be alone in case I died. 

My next visit from a scorpion was 8 years later when I was the mother of an infant.  I stepped on one that time.  It stung me, and I had another crying fit, but no mother to comfort me. My "then" husband probably had his head in a Greek book.  I don't remember that he gave me any comfort.   Sometime during those 8 years, I had read that bleach applied to a scorpion sting helps greatly.  I splashed bleach all over myself and the floor, hopping on one foot and screaming.  The pain went away quickly.  My next memory is of drying off the bleach, and rocking my little baby girl.  Someone was already more important to me than myself. 

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Me and My Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

The good thing about today is that it reminds me of one of my most favorite books , Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. Oh, I know. It could be worse. Mercy! I know it could be worse, because there were two days in the past decade when my parents died. That was so bad that it scares me to say this is a bad day.  One thing that makes today so bad is that I can't call either one of my parents to whine.. they would have listened as long as I wanted to whine. When I wrung myself dry of words and tears, my mother would say all of the right things, and my daddy would have a solution. Well, I did get to hear Michael Grimm a few minutes ago sing When a Man Loves a Woman on the finals of America's Got Talent. Be still my heart!  Love the song, love the guy. As I typed, I was thinking how happy I was that I didn't forget tonight was the finals and that I remembered to record it. Next to sing is the darling Jackie Evancho, whom I've watched and loved on YouTube for as long as she's been on it. You know what is happening? A silent screen and the loathsome words "searching for signal on Satellite.." Sure enough there is a gentle soft rain...which is a good thing. Most of the time.  But I didn't hear Jackie sing.  I intended to tell about my day, but rehearsing it would surely be an agony, and although it's not a call to my parents, it feels good to have had my Whine du Jour.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Alert! Freezer Taken Into Custody! Armed and Dangerous!

It's serious!   Miss Jenny's GE freezer has been arrested because of it's  unlawful content!  At the time of arrest it was considered to be armed and dangerous.  There was a stash of 8 large cartons of Blue Bell Ice Cream.  Blue Bell and Ben and Jerry's are two brands that are expected to be banned by Michelle Obama's White House task force.  After that goes into effect, Miss Jenny's offense will be a felony offense.

 Both Jenny and the freezer were  cited  and taken into custody. 

While unlocked during the night of September 12, 2010, there was a situation of illegal entry.  An "older" (ahem) lady, after violating her parole from prior convictions was discovered after a Breaking and Entry into the freezer.

After alledgedly taking Ambien CR, (the suspect stated that she is a "sleep binger" when taking the drug,)  Miss Jenny is believed to have gone to sleep at the wheel, crashed her late model recliner wrapping it around an end table, which caused a full bowl of melted Rocky Road ice cream to  slip through the foot rest of her recliner and land on the wood floor. 

She says the noise awoke her and her husband   But first he called  911 for disturbance of his peace.  He had no other comments, even after Miss Jenny yelled at him that it was his fault for buying the ice cream.  The distraught woman was then cited for domestic abuse.  Miss Jenny has been ordered to wear her BodyBugg, a calories monitoring system. 

 There seemed to have been an attempt to hide evidence.  Diet Detective Skinny Minnie told Lox News that she found a pair of pajamas soaking in the bathroom, stained with what appears to be chocolate, with miniature marshmallows floating in the water. The evidence will be turned over to the Nurtrition Czar in Washington D.C.

The perp had a blood sugar level of 600. She claims that she was not aware of filling a cereal bowl with Rocky Road. She refused to admit that she had eaten 2 other bowls of ice cream earlier in the night.

The Diet Detective told Mr Jenny to chain and lock the freezer, as a condition  of bail.  The two perps were remanded into his custody.  Miss Jenny could be heard grumbling that it was like the fox guarding the hen house. 

After exiting the Michelle Obama Shame on You Courthouse,  Miss Jenny could be heard screaming that she didn't even LIKE Blue Bell's Groom's Cake Ice Cream.  She was seen sticking her tongue out at a large group of Next Top Models and Marie Osmond  who were also exiting the new 10 billion dollar court house.  This is the same court house that has been the subject of much pride and also criticism from  Lox News, as it is said to have created 15 new jobs besides giving law enforcement an upscale place to bring good role models to the obese of the USA.  There are 14 job openings for Size 2 Female Guards.  The First Lady would like to see these jobs filled ASAP.

The skinny women, subjected to the tacky and tasteless taunts of Miss Jenny, had earlier received the Michelle Obama Gold Medals of Honor for being skinny with 2% body fat. 

Is this tacky behavior of Miss Jenny's  what we can expect in the next 35 years from Lindsay Lohan and Paris Hilton?

Monday, September 6, 2010

On Being a Perfectionist

Last night, I was digging in, looking for lists of free Kindle books. I found a list of the top 100 free Kindle books. I was surprised to find a free book, Overcoming Perfectionism: the Key to a Balanced Recovery by Ann W. Smith. That was a jolt to me, and I can’t get it out of my mind.

Is being a perfectionist considered something “wrong”? Is it something we should fix? I think it is not learned behavior or environmental. My brother is the classic example of a slob. He is certainly the opposite of a perfectionist. I’m a classic example of a perfectionist, and we were reared in the same home, same environment. Neither of us has ever wanted to be like the other.

I do understand the importance of doing things in moderation and not becoming obsessive. I have been thinking about the problems of being a perfectionist when I felt I wanted to stop this blog. In my mind it was going to be a joyous celebration of my success losing weight. I saw it as a journey that would be downhill all the way to the finish line of 124 pounds. Maybe I would stumble over a few little holes in the road, and some days it might be a tad uphill. I never imagined a MOUNTAIN.  A crisis the first week and certainly not one that took the whole summer to live through. I do believe I’m on the other side of the crisis, but I am feeling mighty bruised and bloody. It’s taking me awhile to find my way back to getting on a diet/exercise wagon.  I did work through my little tantrum about closing down my blog. Why would I think that I needed even less to write and vent about my life when things were going very wrong or at least rocky? So I think I’ve dusted myself off, and I see that it was wrong thinking. I need to do this and keep finding ways to be successful and achieve my goals.

Being a perfectionist is the way I am. I don’t want to change that. I wouldn’t consider changing from being a girl. Or a mother. Wife. Christian. Friend. Why would I want to change and be a slob like my brother? Then I would have candy wrappers, Little Debbie wrappers, Golden Arch sacks and packing…maybe some old French fries from the week before, littering up my car. And I Would.Not.Care!!! He surely wouldn’t want to be like me. My brother is happy. Being disheveled, untidy and messy just doesn’t cause a blip on his screen. He is a good and kind man, and people love him. He doesn’t want to change that.  By the way, I adore him just the way he is.  But again...I don't want to be him.

It occurred to me that the term slob is offensive, but I couldn’t think of a nice term for the opposite of perfectionist. I went searching and found one word in Wiki answers: under achiever. I suppose that is kinder, but I spent my teaching career working with under achievers, children who weren’t working up to their potential.

I can understand why the book is selling for $0.00. I do not know a perfectionist who is trying to be a slob or an under achiever. The thesaurus gives these words for a perfectionist: stickler, purist, somebody who likes to do things properly, obsessive, thorough person, and uncompromising worker. Except for obsessive, that looks like a list of admirable attributes. There are those great reality TV shows about “The Messiest House in the Country” and “Hoarders.” I don’t think there will be much call for shows about perfectionists. I would like to hear what other people think about being or not being a perfectionist.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Blog picture of deer

I get a happy feeling between my arms when I see my blog picture.  Not the one of me.  The one at the top with the deer.  I couldn't believe when one of my dearest friends from Troy, Michigan, sent that in an e-mail to show me what she sees when she looks into her back yard.  I'll tell you...for a girl who lived in west Texas at the time, I was awestruck.  I used it on my blog, but then I wrote and asked her permission, which she granted so graciously.  The bad thing, I haven't invited her to read my blog.  I could have lots of followers if I invited all of my friends and family to read my blog.  That would be such a loss of privacy to me.  For my Michigan friend, I'll probably invite her one day.  We refer to ourselves as "sisters" and sometimes "sister/friends."  We forget that we've never met in person.  Health issues are the only things so far that has kept one of us from flying to see the other.  In 2004 I first dipped my toe into the ebay waters. I swim in there with the sharks!  My friend was one of my first sellers.  She always has great buys on Coach handbags as she is also a Coach fiend.  I never have to worry is one is fake.  She is downsizing and has an endless supply of beautiful things that she has collected since the 50's.  After 6 years, I have treasures in every room that came from her collections.  But the best treasure is that I have a sister in Michigan who loves me as much as any blood sister.  I have enormous blessings from God that He heaps upon me daily.  It's amazing to realize the huge blessings I receive through the internet!  Case in little band of followers on my blog!

I LOVE quotes!

My blog is still not pretty, and I don't have a thing to say about losing weight.  Now I'm "following" my own self which is embarrassing.  I was trying to send a message to Sam, and in the process I clicked something that caused me to follow my own blog.  Sure enough, there's my picture.   Sam wrote a lovely comment which caused me to cry a bit.  And Kelly is my lifter-upper as is Sandy who even sent me a comment from somewhere in the states where they are traveling.

I've stayed up much too late mostly digging through Amazon looking for free books for my Kindle.  Before I shut down my computer, I was looking at my cluttered desktop and reading some of my cyber stickies.  I love cyber stickies too!  I lose the real ones.  One of my new, favorite quotes was right there in my face.  I suddenly realized that it fits right in with the moaning that I am doing about losing/gaining weight.  It's so good I wanted to get it on my blog.  Well, I suppose I do have something to say about losing weight:

Because a thing seems difficult
for you,
do not think it impossible.
                     --Marcus Aurelius

Friday, September 3, 2010

I am a kind girl, only not to ME!

I read a good passage in the new book I’m reading, Beautiful Lies, by Lisa Unger. She had just met the new guy in her apartment building and was very attracted to him. She was most attracted to him because of his kindness and that surprised her. I liked the passage so much that I underlined it. During the day I kept thinking about how being kind makes people attractive and memorable. That’s the best sort of reading, isn’t it? When it bumps into us and causes us to expand our thinking.

I have thought about how kindness from another has changed my life. And how it’s one of the characteristics a person has or doesn’t have that makes me remember them after they are gone. Gone, either from my life, or from losing them in death. Meanness in people can make them just as memorable. Memories of my daddy always seem to be centered in some kindness he did me or someone else. He was so graced with kindness…in every word, look and deed.

I’ve not spent much time being kind to me. Sometimes I do. Sometimes I don’t. It is a trait that comes easily for me with other people. But why do I find being kind to me is such a chore?  I’ve certainly not been kind to me since June when I could not stay on my diet, losing weight. I have no patience, no love for the person I have been in the last three months. I’ve been so disappointed that I haven’t wanted to post to my shiny new blog, because I had the notion that it was going to be all about how successful I was. How skinny I was becoming. It didn’t turn out that way, so far. Never would I treat another person with the disgust and disappointment I have felt toward myself. I haven’t solved it, but I have evolved enough to consider it.  I've fallen, and I need to pick myself up.

Here are scriptures I like:

Ephesians 4:32

“Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”

I Corinthians 13:4

“Love is patient, love is kind,…..”

Here’s that passage I like so much from Beautiful Lies by Lisa Unger:

“I’ll tell you something about myself. I can get my head turned by a good-looking guy as much as the next girl. But sexy doesn’t impress me; strength of character impresses me. But most of all I’m impressed by kindness. Kindness, I think, comes from learning hard lessons well, from falling and picking yourself up. It comes from surviving failure and loss. It implies an understanding of the human condition, forgives its many flaws and quirks. When I see that in someone, it fills me with admiration. I saw it in him. His eyes, a deep brown, almost black, heavily lidded with dark lashes, made me want to confess all my sins and secrets and do penance in his arms.”

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Stalled diet

I certainly veered off my diet.   But as I have moaned and complained, life happens.  The thing I have most wanted to learn is how not to let these difficult times derail me.   But that's exactly what has happened.  The thing now is for the derailment not to last for several more months.

 I started my blog on such a high note of enthusiasm.  Then when the bottom fell out, I didn't want to post and talk about failure.  As I work to pull my mind and body out of this pit, I'm thinking I need to stop with words like "failure."  It has been several weeks of recovery from the colonoscopy and endoscopy.  I have no blockage or tumor, but I did have inflammation.  A lot of the problems I was having are much improved since the tests.  If I had merely done the prep, as loathsome as it is, back in June, I think I might have been okay.  Although I still have a lot of gas and bloating,  I am trying through trial and error to find the healthy foods that I can eat.  In the process I have regained every pound that I lost.

The struggle continues with new doctors.  I assume that the doctor who did the tests was competent.  I don't think he communicates well with women.  His name is Muhammed and I cannot pronounce nor remember his last name.  I had one appointment with him, and he never made eye contact with me.  Then when I saw him at the hospital before the tests, he stated that he would give the results to my husband, because I would still be asleep after it was over.  All I know of my results is what my half-deaf husband has reported to me.  The short sentence above is exactly what he remembers from Muhammed.   He is my love, but he's not who I would choose to receive medical reports.   I thought my new internal specialist might explain the results to me, but he reports that it will be a month before he receives anything. I'm going to let this paragraph stand as my explanation.  I am not going to have myself a rant over the medical profession.  This is making me feel like the little red hen.  I will do it myself.

Last week I had a nasty flu/virus.  I spent a lot of the week in bed.  My husband gifted me with a Kindle last month, so the time hasn't all been spent feeling sorry for myself. 

Here's what I have read:

 The Hunger Games and Catching Fire.    I have the 3rd book but haven't read it yet.  These are a great read!

Redeeming Love  by Francine Rivers   It's a beautiful story, but I expect no less from Rivers.

The Help by Kathryn Stockett  I didn't want it to end.  It tugs at the heart strings, and I found it to be what I remember of the early 60's in the south.

The Passage by Justin Cronin   I almost missed this book because it was described as having vampires in it.  It's an ambitious (long) book, but I was completely engaged and never felt I had read about vampires.  I'm looking forward to the sequel in a year.  His writing would take a year or more to produce a good book.

The Goddess of Fried Okra by Jean Brashear  What a treat this book is!  And I was ready for something a little lighter with lots of laughs.  For a short time, it was offered free on Kindle which was the reason I bought it.  Now I would gladly pay to buy a Brashear book.  Highly recommend!

A mystery series by Karin Slaughter.  She is a new author for me.  She has a new book, Broken.  After considering downloading it to my Kindle, I realized that it is the 8th book in the series.  I have to read series in order.  So I dug through Amazon and made myself a list, in order.  I have read the first 3 books in the last week.  Blindsighted,  Kisscut, and A Faint Cold Fear.  I think I would consider these good beach books.  Or books to read when you have the flu and don't want to be challenged.  I like finding good, new authors.  I'm not a huge fan of mystery, thrillers, but I like these.  I like her character development.  The first book was obviously by a new author, albeit a promising one.  She improves by the 2nd, and greatly improves by the 3rd.  There are some shocking crimes, but she does them well even for a squeamish reader such as I.  It may work for me, because often she gives the description after the fact.  Not always, but enough.

Confessions of a Carb Queen by Susan Blech This is one of the best stories of weight-loss that I have read. I have bought enough to buy a Kindle. I’m glad they are on my shelf, because I need the visual of seeing them there. I also highly recommend Blech’s book. There were only 2 pictures on my Kindle, but I googled and brought up several articles featuring Susan Blech with nice, pictures of her in color.

Now that I look back at that list, I’m seeing another reason why I wasn’t blogging. All of that luscious time spent reading!