Howdie Family and Friends - here are the going ons in the life of me. Stew shows up frequently. My family and friends visit a lot. My nieces and nephews are represented throughout. It's all about me and how I'm traveling along in this thing I call my life.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Pinned It, Did it, Friday: Cleaning Glass Cooktops

Like a lot of people I know, the thought of having a glass cooktop meant that cleaning would be easier - well, I've found that that isn't always true.  Especially if you cook like me - which means, that more food ends up on the stove than in the pan.  If the saying "a messy cook is a good cook" is true - I'm not sure why I don't have my own cooking show on the Food Network...

Anyhow.  I saw this and pinned it.

The source for the pin is here.

This is the before picture - I can't even believe I'm showing this...

The only baking soda I had on hand.

Following the directions.

Used Dawn dishwashing liquid.

Stew and I don't like lighthouses or anything.

I can't believe the difference.  I never thought I'd get those black marks off of those gray rings and they all came off.  I don't think my towels were wet enough, so next time I will definitely use a little more liquid to get more of a paste from the baking soda, but I'm very pleased with how this worked.

I'm going to call this one PinApproved and add it to my monthly cleaning schedule.

Now, if only I had remembered to turn on the self cleaning oven while this was going on.  Ahhhh, maybe next time.

Friday, January 18, 2013

POTD: January 18, 2013

The reason I love getting fuel in New Jersey - I don't have to leave my car.

Pinned It, Did It, Friday: Clean Eating Muffins

My goal this year is to eat more whole, natural foods and do away with a lot of the preservatives and ingredients with names so long I can't pronounce.  Last week, I made eggs in the oven for a week of good breakfasts, which Stew was eating on English Muffins.  Well, now, English Muffins have plenty of those ingredients I don't want in our bodies, so I was on the mission to find some biscuits (his preference over muffins) to make so he could have those with his eggs.

I found a recipe on this site and pinned it.

The one limitation I had with these biscuits is that I do not own a biscuit cutter.  This might seem a bit impossible for all of those that have seen my closet of kitchen gadgets - but nope, no biscuit cutter.  I ended up using some plastic thing we had to cut out my biscuits which made them a bit smaller than they should have been - but that was okay, I wanted to know about the taste anyway.

The recipe was super easy.  I had to add a bit more apple sauce to mine as it wouldn't come together, but otherwise the process for getting these babies into the pan was simple.

The recipe called for 20 minutes on each side.  Stew and I finished a complete game of trivial pursuit while we waited for these suckers to cook.  The recipe said to cook them on the lowest possible setting - well that turned out to be too low on my electric stovetop - we had to turn the temperature up a bit in order to get them finished.

So, what's the verdict - I thought they tasted good and Stew thought they tasted good - but it was a long time for cooking and with the cutter we used there was no way we were getting an egg on them.  We're going to call this one Pin Maybe - as the taste was good and I want to try to make them again, but this time turning up the heat a little and using a bigger biscuit cutter.

I ended up eating these with a little bit of honey on them - yummy snack.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

POTD: January 16, 2013

Stew opens this motorized water gun his parents gave him for his birthday and his first words are, "GEP is going to be so jealous." 

POTD: January 15, 2013

I told Stew tonight that I think he just doesn't want to get me donuts when he goes to 7-11 because every time he goes by himself, there aren't any, but when I go, they always seem to have donuts.  Tonight he took a picture to prove to me that there was only one of my donuts to be found....

(Donuts are yummy - but oh so bad!!)

Journal: January 15, 2013, 11:05PM

(Note, January 16, 2013:  Ahhh, the journaling.  I've been writing down things for every day on my tablet but getting them onto the blog, well, that's something that's seriously lacking.  I think maybe I should just journal here at night foregoing the pictures and such and then editing or something.  Seems like too much effort to do this in two places.  I'll need to figure that out.  I hope to get this damn thing up to date today (sorry all my FB friends that my feed will be filled with this), but we'll see.  There's always the long train rides tomorrow.)

Journal for January 15, 2013
I spent Tuesday cleaning the house.  All the rooms are done with the exception of our room and our bathroom - I always save them for last and then they never get done.  I did get our clothes put away and straightened up all the things we are forever leaving out, so really I just need to dust and do the floors in there which is a vast improvement, hopefully I'll get to that tomorrow and then the house will be completely clean.  Another task for tomorrow - LAUNDRY.  Sigh.  I don't know what's with me and laundry lately.  I just don't want to do it and the laundry room is definitely showing that.

In between cleaning, I played my picture puzzle game.  This one has been killing me for a long time - but I conquered that damn thing today.  Only to find out it was a carrot - say what???

Stew and I were talking tonight about how we both lack discipline in all areas of our life.  I would love to stay on schedule for cleaning and laundry and form good healthy routines, but it seems like he gets home from work, neither of us feel like cooking, we eat some crap for dinner and then sit in front of the television and I told myself I wasn't going to do that this year.  No more sitting in front of the tv, but I don't know what it is, I always feel guilty when I'm in the scrap room at night when Stew's home, since I feel like he and I should be spending time together and of course, he's watching tv.  We really need to change this.  We had mac and cheese for dinner tonight and a 7-11 run complete with donuts, slurpee and candy bars.  Yeah, not exactly going to reach the goal weight doing that.  This is definitely something we have to work on.

I read an article today about overcoming procrastination and the thing that resonated the most with me is that in order to combat procrastination, we have to form new habits because what we have formed is the habit of procrastination. 

And it's not like there are a million things that don't get done around our house - I mean, if you guys know me at all, you know that my definition of "a mess" is far different than say someone on hoarders, but still - I want my house company ready at all times.  Is it unrealistic expectations or is it just laziness that keeps this from happening.  Something to think about.  Stew and I are each others own worst enemies.  I don't feel like cooking, he's, "okay, dear, what do you want for dinner?"  He doesn't feel like cooking and I'm the same.  We don't urge each other to do the things that we know in our minds that we should be doing.  We need a motivating life coach or something, since we feed into each other's laziness. 

So with all of that being said, here's what happened today:

I cleaned.  We worked (Stew had like 6 meetings today).  We had macaroni and cheese for dinner (despite Stew stopping at Wegmans after work to get dinner).  We ate snacks from 7-11.  We watched Spartacus (LOVE THIS SHOW!  They killed my favorite character, though.  Those bastards.  I haven't been this affected by a characters death on a show since they killed Hammerhead on The Unit.  Booooo.)  And then I was going to go into the scraproom, but we checked the damn DVR and don't you know it, that damn Duck Dynasty was on there.  So, of course, we had to watch that.

That show is going to kill me.  Phil giving advice on dating:  You get the happy, happy, happy, then you get the crabby, crabby, crabby.  And then Willie almost getting run over by his daughter while teaching her how to drive - I've never seen a grown man run away like a little girl like that before, except maybe for Stew with spiders.

Then I straightened up our room.  Put away what clean laundry was in the hamper.  Played my game on my tablet - went to bed.

Not the most productive day - but most of the house is clean.  That's a step in the right direction.

And there's no chance of sitting around watching tv tomorrow night as Stew's parents will be here to celebrate his birthday.  Tomorrow's looking better already.

Some other notes from today:

Claude Giroux was named captain for the Flyers.  I think that's a good choice.

Justin has a new single out that's all the buzz.  It came out on Sunday and is number 1 on iTunes already.  I'm not sure if I like it or not, but that's typical the way for me with his music.

My AGP is just smiling and laughing all over the place.  Christina posted pictures of her on Facebook today and I'm going to steal them - she's just too damn precious.

I found GEP's DS game that he lost a million years ago.  Months ago, Christina called us to ask us if we had found it.  I pulled apart our cars, re-organized the kids' toys to see if it was in there, went through all of our games, even vacuumed under all the couches - couldn't find it.  Tonight I decide that since I'm going to Calgary, maybe I should wash my winter coat.  I never wear the damn thing and honestly can't tell you the last time I wore it, but as I was going through the pocket - lo and behold there's GEP's game.  I can't imagine how it got there.  Maybe it was in the car and I stuck it in my pocket?  Who knows.  I just hope he hasn't bought it again.  If he has, I'll just give this one to MNP and buy GEP a new game.  Sigh....

 (And in case I lose this - it's in the glass bowl on the bookcase in the living room.)

Monday, January 14, 2013

Journal: January 14, 2013, 11:06PM

So I got up this morning with Stew like I'm supposed to and was out of bed by 6AM, just didn't get on the treadmill when I should have.  Worked out probably around 7:30.  Glad I did it.

I worked on some scrap projects today and of course, work projects. 

I'm still not be successful with the scheduling thing.  I mean the most productive things I did today were work out, shower, and take care of work tasks.  Not really a glowing review of the day and it's not like I'm going to be able to stick to my schedule tonight since I didn't take my pills today - which leads to incredible insomnia.  Go me!

I talked to Steve tonight.  He was in a bit of a snit over some stuff going on at home.  It was funny though because he was telling about how stressed he is over his job and how inadequate people don't get fired because of all the warnings and such that the manager has to go through.  I just had to laugh.  That's the real world, folks.

He also told me that something was as contradictory as a starburst - which I completely didn't get, but that's natural for about 75% of the things he tells me, but he was saying that it's hard on the outside, soft on the inside like this candy commercial he saw.  I'm not sure what candy he was talking about.  Skittles or Tootsie Roll pops maybe - but I'm pretty sure it wasn't starburst.

He also compared his brother Shawn to Adam Sandler and those other comedians known best for "stupid" comedy.  I'm not sure if his brother would take that as a compliment or not.  I'll have to ask him next time I talk to him.

We had Chick Fil A for dinner - this is what happens when I don't eat a good breakfast (had cereal, Cocoa Puffs at that) and then skip lunch.  I end up eating crappy stuff for dinner.  C'est la vie.

Loving that Shawn's unit has a Facebook page - every now and then they share a picture of him doing his thing...Awesome!

POTD: January 14, 2013

See those pills sitting in that Monday container?  Not exactly where they beling 

Sunday, January 13, 2013

POTD: January 13, 2013

Look at all the beauties.  Verna posted this picture to Facebook today - I hope these gorgeous creatures stick around until I get there in February!!

POTD: January 12, 2013

Steve at the door of his new apartment.

Pinned It, Did It, Friday

Getting this one up a little late this week - so much going on, but I did accomplish my goal of trying out one thing that I've pinned.

This week, it was all about preparing for the coming week and seeing ways to cut down on the time it takes to get out the door for work while still having a good breakfast.

I'm an egg eater - I love eggs for breakfast, so when I saw this pin on Pinterest about baking the eggs in the oven and then storing them for the week and microwaving them in the morning.  I thought this was an awesome idea.

I don't know who to credit for the original pin - my pin was from this blog.

But...would it turn out like last week's failure?

Well, I followed the directions as they were listed.

1.  Sprayed the muffin tins with cooking spray (want to make my own in the future, so I stop using the chemical ridden Pam).  Then I cracked the eggs into it.  I didn't add the spinach like the pin because I wasn't sure if Stew would like it.  So, just a little salt and pepper, then into the oven at 350 for 15 minutes.

They came out completely done all the way through.

I stored them in a container for the week.
Then, it was time for the true test.  Would they be any good.  After some trial and error, Stew determined that they should be microwaved for about 30 seconds to heat all the way through.  He put his on a toasted English muffin and had a very enjoyable breakfast.

I'm going to call this one Approved!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

POTD: January 11, 2013

They call this color Bordeaux.

POTD: January 10, 2013

Stew went to get me a slurpee. I pretended that he got me a purple straw for the Lakers. Sigh.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

POTD: January 9, 2012

Filling out the paperwork for Steve's off-campus housing.

POTD: January 8, 2013

Sometimes, sitting in traffic leads to unexpected surprises. Lovely waterfall down by the Potomac.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Journal: January 7, 2013

Today was a pretty good day.  In fact, it was a day that I wish all of my days (work days, that is) would mirror.  It's a day where I go to bed thinking that I've done everything that I was supposed to do today. 

Stew and I decided that we would start our New Year today since we were traveling last weekend and then didn't have time to prepare for last week.  So, with the start of our New Year, I got up this morning, got on the scale (ACK!), then got my butt on the treadmill.  Re-started couch to to 5K.  I'm sick of restarting - I'll tell you that much.  I've lost so much since the fall. 

After that, I did my body measurements and then showered and got ready for work.

I had a good lunch of tuna and wheat thins.  I even counted out the wheat thins and put the box away, because if you give me the box, I'll eat all of them.

Stew came home with groceries and I made a recipe he found using turkey breast and a honey mustard marinade.  I've never made turkey breast this way before but it turned out really good.  This one we will definitely be having again.

I also used my Christmas present for the first time.  Oh how I love my knife.  I'm scared to death of it, but I love it!  It cuts through carrots like they're nothing.  It's fantastic.

While I cooked, Stew got on the bike and did his workout.  We took his "before" pictures, too.

After dinner, I baked our eggs for the week.  We saw this on Pinterest and thought it looked interesting.  I'll put the whole post about it in one of my Pinned It, Did It, Friday posts, but it looks like they turned out pretty good.  I hope they taste as good.

I also made some clean eating biscuits (will be another Pinned It, Did It, Friday posts).  These just turned out weird - and how can I not own a biscuit cutter.  I own every kitchen gadget known to man, but not a biscuit cutter.  So weird.

While Stew and I waited for the biscuits to "cook" - you "bake" them on the stove top, we played trivial pursuit.  He kicked ass, as usual.  I don't know why I bother playing with him.  He downloaded the game onto his iPad, we don't even have to pull the actual board game out anymore.  Just a sign of the times, I guess.

We also sat down today and planned out our week - thinking about what was going on and what we had to do.  It's a good way to think about our goals for the week.

Really good day.  I hope we can keep it up tomorrow.

POTD: January 7, 2013

This is Stew's way of taking his shoes upstairs. He puts them back on, regardless of what he's wearing. Tonight it's his biking shorts and his black work socks. He's a fashion maven alright.

Move More, Eat Well: January Assignment

My Weight Story

Where do I begin to tell my weight story?  For as long as I can remember, I have thought that I was fat.  I’ve always been bigger than the little twig girls that you see and that difference, in my head, made me think that I was fat.  Now, if you go back and you look at pictures of me as a kid, of pictures of me as recent as a few years out of high school and you’ll know that what my mind saw was very different than the body that I had.  I was an active child, always playing sports, always walking somewhere, always riding my bike, always exploring.  As I entered high school, my activity level started to slow down, but still I was active enough with all that I was doing that the weight didn’t pile on.  During my twenties it slowly started to creep and then when my mother died it felt like all I did was eat.  I eat to combat stress.  I eat to make myself feel better.  I eat when I’m overly happy and I eat when I’m sad.  I eat to celebrate.  I eat to drown sorrows.  I eat when I’m bored and I eat when I’m depressed.  I eat to keep myself awake and I eat to keep myself motivated.  All the very wrong answers for eating.  Eating is a necessary part of life, but it’s only real purpose is to fuel our body.  To give our cells the energy that they need to function.  It won’t give you a hug.  It won’t make you laugh.  It won’t lend a supportive word.  It will pack pounds on your hips and clench your heart.  The sad part for me is that the more weight I gain, the more discouraged I get about losing it.  I think some people see a number on a scale and think, holy hell, I need to get that down.  And though I have moments of that, I mostly see that number and think, what the hell is the point?  So, we have the unhealthy relationship with food.  We have the discouragement that the number presents and we have a recipe for disaster.  That’s where I’m coming from.  That’s where I am.  I can’t wait to see what will happen when I stick to this program.  Maybe food will be put back into its proper place.  Nothing tastes as good as being healthy feels.

My January One Thing

One of the things that I really need to change when it comes to my problem with over eating
is the constant need to be chewing something while I’m watching tv.  Television is a destructive hobby that I’ve indulged in for way too long.  It’s not productive.  So, the one thing that I’m going to focus on this month is to not sit in front of the television except for Friday laundry nights and other times that are pre-planned.  No more wasted time this way.  The added bonus of not doing this is that I won’t be eating.  And as far as eating is concerned.  No eating in front of the tv, unless it’s popcorn (unbuttered) on tv night.
Move More, Eat Well is a class designed by Cathy Zielske for Big Picture Classes.  For more information, go here.

Sunday, January 6, 2013

POTD: January 6, 2013

Kobe - mmm, mmm, good.

Journal: January 6, 2013

I'm still typing 2012 in the title.  Wonder how long that will last.

We didn't do a whole lot today.  Stew slept late while I played in the craft room.  I spent a lot of time scheduling posts for the coming month.  I figure if I stay ahead of it then I'll be able to keep up with the schedule that I sent for my crafting blog.  I'm going to do a video about Project Life on Sunday, a wordless layout share on Wednesday, and a process video about a scrapbook layout on Friday.  Add that to the daily picture I do here, the daily journal I'm supposed to do here (forever behind) and the Friday Pinned it, Did it and it's a lot going on for the coming year, but it's good.  I want to blog on a more routine basis and if I can ever get the discipline together to write out my journal entries every night, I'd be in business.  Still working on that discipline thing.  I'm hoping that keeping my one little word for the year (NOW) in the forefront of my mind will help.

Stew and I spent some time today planning out our coming week and doing our budget.  I think it's going to be important to make this a part of our routine (routine?  what routine - another thing we're working on this year).  It helps us see the week ahead and figure out what we both have going on.

While we were planning, I almost killed Stew.  He was looking at the clock in my craft room.  The conversation went something like this:

S:  Is that clock right?
G:  No.  It's an hour fast and twenty minutes slow.

At this point, Stew about dies.  I don't see his point at first and then I realize why he finds that so funny.

S:  So you mean it's 40 minutes fast.
G:  Well, yeah but it's easier for me to figure out the time by remembering the hour fast and twenty minutes slow.  (I don't know how this happened, it's always been 20 minutes slow, but the time change somewhere along the way messed up the hours or something...I can't figure it out now that I think about it.)
S:  There's a better way to figure it out.
G:  What's that?
S: Fix the freaking time!!

Yeah, yeah - we'll see about that.

After we did our planning and Stew stopped hyperventilating, we headed down to Kobe for our last "bad" meal before we try to start eating right tomorrow.  This is the year we're going to get in shape.  I hope.

Kobe wasn't as good as I remember it being, but Stew enjoyed it and he has lunch for a few days, so that's good.

(This was a really strange issue - we haven't been to Kobe since the fire in our house last year.  It was really weird to me how much of a reaction I had to the flame.  Like I got goosebumps and chills.  I couldn't believe how much it affected me.  I guess it's going to be a long time before those types of things stop.)

We ended the night like we always do - watching tv.  Sigh....if there's one thing I want to change this year - it's that.  I waste too much damn time watching tv.