Friday, May 29, 2009

Friday Rants and Ramblings...

I feel like it was just yesterday when I blogged about what I was doing last weekend! LOL Boy, it sure does go fast, doesn't it?

This weekend's gearing up to be busy too, but in a good way hopefully.

Today I've got lunch with hubby, Avon deliveries to make and a visit to my local podiatrist for the plantar fasciitis - I've got to get this problem resolved and hopefully get a cortizone shot before I end up limping at Disney next week.Then I've got to get home and perform a minor miracle at home and clean it up because we're having people over tonight for a Bible study - BTW, did you hear about this?

For a minute there I thought there was a mistake? How can they fine people for holding a bible study? I mean, wasn't this country founded on the freedom of religion?? Isn't it enough that we've already taken the Bible out of public schools, removed prayer from almost everything and our country is becoming morally bankrupt? Now, you're going to try to fine people for holding bible studies??? I'm just shocked. My girlfriend from Ukraine told me about being persecuted (she's younger than me too) for being a Christian when she was growing up there. Anymore, you feel we're going in that direction here in the U.S.

I know I'm going off on a soapbox here, but I'm just really appalled over the whole thing. I can't even watch regular television anymore because of the profanity and sexual under/overtones of most shows (let alone let the kids watch it), and they blare this trash out to the entire public....but now you're telling me we can't have some friends over and discuss the Bible???

Our country really needs some prayer right now - especially for those in office.

I made it...

I'm down to the 160's (just barely but I'm there)...only 14.5 more pounds to go until I'm back to where I was three years ago when we bought the scale and another 30 til' I'm at WW lifetime and I can go back for free! Yippee!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Countdown to Disney

So we've got almost exactly a week (7 days to be precise) until we leave for Disney. I've had so much anxiety about this trip - thinking that it's going to be a rough's going to be superhot and I'm really not going to enjoy myself...those kinds of thoughts.

Hubby last night made a comment though that's made me think maybe I'm really going about this all the wrong way. He said "Next week we're getting in a car and driving to FL. We may be stuck in traffic or bad weather or whatever, but I'm going to be so thankful that we're together and we're not working". It's so true.

We really need to treasure the time we have together as a family. Every day we run from place to place, rarely taking time to enjoy each other. My daughter who was a preemie and only 3 lbs when she left the hospital, is turning 12 this summer. Twelve!!! It's just crazy how we lose snippets and chunks of time.

Before you know it she'll be graduating and moving away to college. No matter how much I want her to stay my little girl, it's not going to happen. She's going to grow up and I've got to stop focusing so much on the world spinning around me and focus on her and my son.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Current reading...

Right now I'm in the middle of "Confessions of a Carb Queen" The lies we tell ourselves and others. I have always been one to really sympathize with people who are extremely overweight (I don't really like the other O word). I honestly feel like food is an addiction like smoking and drinking and it's not just easy to "quit". When I hear about people making fun of others or making snide comments I always rush to the defense of the person, while being disgusted at the person making the comment's insensitivity.

While reading this book I realize that it's not just an addiction. Sometimes food is a bandaid. We use it to fill holes in our lives, to make us "feel better" about things we're overwhelmed with, or issues we can't resolve. I've always known I was an emotional eater, but while I read Susan's stories of bingeing, I'm overcome with awe. I honestly could never imagine someone could eat so much junk food, and keep going. It's actually scary.

It definitely put my weight woes into perspective. If this person, who was 468 lbs and suffering emotionally could turn her life around and become a "healthy" person, who am I to tell myself that I can't do it? If I lost 31 lbs I would be in a healthy range - 31 lbs is definitely do-able! Thank God it's not 300!

Tuesday starts with T

So this weekend I didn't manage to get half the stuff done on my list! AND I gained back 1.4 lbs!!! Uggh!!! I'm praying it's mostly water weight - it was hot this weekend, but yesterday's picnic was more than I could handle.

Friday we did see Star Trek - AWESOME! Loved it. Then we took the kids and went to Macaroni Grill for dinner. I only had two pieces of the bread (small, torn bits) and only ate half my Eggplant Parmesan. No dessert.

Saturday we took the bikes out for the first time - wow, I'm out of shape. Granted, I had no idea how to change gears and I probably was doing a lot more work pedaling than I needed to, but I was exhausted after a small trip around the neighborhood...

Next I went into the house and started working on the upstairs attics, sorting out bins, putting aside clothes too small for the kids (or stuff I just don't want anymore) and bringing down the summer stuff. It was ungodly hot upstairs so I was glad when it was time to take a shower and get going for the first picnic.

At the picnic at my S & BIL's house I was careful not to eat too many chips, I stayed away from the hot dogs and ribs and just had a small sliver of cheesecake for dessert. I played lacross with hubby and tried to not sit too much. It worked.

Sunday was church (coffee for breakfast) and then back over to the IL's house for leftovers. Again, I watched what I ate but I may have had just a few too many chips. Only a sliver of dessert for me!

Sunday day was lazier, it was hot and no one really wanted to be outside but the kids. We chatted all afternoon and then before I knew it the time had come to go back to church. Luckily I was in the nursery, so I played and walked little babies around until time to go. I didn't eat a thing after our lunch that day which was good too.

Monday - Memorial day - the day we give thanks to those who've kept us free over the years. I love these types of days, it's just too bad that most people don't remember what the holiday's really about - they just want to BBQ and enjoy the day off.

In the morning hubby and I do another bike ride. I'm a little better this time since he adjusted my seat a bit and I guess it helped. I still don't know how to manipulate the gears but get a lot further than before before I'm totally wiped out. After an ice coffee (splenda & milk) and a WW English muffin (my typical breakfast), I've got to go.

I'm getting so close to my trip I really need to buy some things - my SIL had suggested we go to the Outlet mall together to shop around 10am. I had really wanted to enjoy some more time with my family, but hey, shopping's always good too. We hit a thrift store first and then JC Penney Outlet and Skechers. I buy a couple outfits for K and find her three bathing suits (in plus size) for $4.99 at JCP. At Skechers I buy the kids the Cali gear shoes for all the water parks, etc. We've got to go and I didn't have time to look for a backpack or any tops for me.

I drop her off and stop off at a couple stores to buy what's needed for the pasta salad I'm bringing to my girlfriend's house for her picnic. I'm not sure how many people will be there so I just decide to bring a supersize salad.

My pasta salad - 2 lbs garden rotini, 1 bottle light Italian, 1 pkg Good Seasons Italian dressing (dry), 1/2 cup light olive oil, broccoli, cauliflower, black olives, shredded carrot, chopped tomato, parmesan cheese and small cubes of light (white) sharp cheddar. Delish!

I also bring along some stuff to make strawberry shortcakes. Just in case what she's got is overly fattening...

My girlfriend's house is absolutely huge - probably literally three times the size of mine. It's decorated to make you feel cozy and right at home - her personality clearly filtering into her decoration style. Her two story deck overlooking the beautiful back lawn is a dream and we spend the afternoon there. Unfortunately for me, it's hot again and it's much nicer to relax in the comfy patio deck chairs than to go down to the lawn by myself.

We have a great time chatting, it's been so long since we've gotten together - at least three years. Out comes the appetizers....yikes....spinach dip - how will I ever defeat the beloved spinach dip??? I don't. After about 10 or so pieces of delicious sesame bagel pieces slathered in spinach dip I stop. Probably about 10 pieces too many. I fare much better during the meal, only eating a burger (no cheese) and a tiny bit of pasta salad and fruit salad. My downfall worsened with the arrival of the deviled eggs...I now know why they call them "the devil's eggs".

Dessert was baked chocolate chip brownies and a large chocolate chip cookie with whip cream and fruit designed to be patriotic. How could I not taste them??? I graciously just asked for "slivers" but alas she gave me what I'd deem as full portions. I tried to behave, leaving half my chocolate chip on my plate...but the damage was done.

After a night of a bloated, uncomfortable stomach ache and restless sleep I step on the scale (and I had to force myself to do it!) and I'm up 1.4 lbs since Saturday morning. Why????? Uggh!!!!

I've got two days to fix it, I CAN DO IT!!!

Friday, May 22, 2009

It's not easy being green

Kermit was all in the know. He knew way before his time that it was just much "cooler" to be green. However, not everyone agreed with him. Remember his song "It's not easy being green"?

Living green is a lot more difficult than it seems. Between relying on corporations and local governments to enforce rules on green, it takes planning and careful decision making to "be green".

Here are ten simple tips that everyone can add into their every day life to make those small steps towards achieving sustainability a lot easier.

1. Recycle your newspapers and junk mail by taking advantage of local churches and schools "Green bins" if you don't already have neighborhood paper pickup. Ask your local county or township about special bins for recylables.

2. Lower your thermostat or buy a programmable thermostat. Use low-flow faucets, showerheads, and toilets. Buy compact fluorescent light bulbs, turn off lights and electronics when you leave the room. Unplug chargers and turn off surge protectors when not in use (especially overnight).

3. Purchase plastic or glass containers for packing kids lunch boxes. Have you heard of Bento boxes? Attempt to pack all lunches in something that can be rinsed/washed out easily. Get rid of ziplocks and such disposable items. Make it your challenge to replace those items.

4. Use cloth napkins and dish towels instead of napkins and paper towels. Avoid sponges and use cloths designed for reusability for washing dishes. Wash dishes the "old fashioned" way instead of using the dishwasher. Save the dishwasher for when you have company and extra dishes.

5. Now most stores provide reusable bags you can purchase, even giving you a discount for recyling your bags. Take advantage of this and bring back your own bags to the grocery store.
Check out your local produce markets for better quality and less chance of chemical. You'll find better "in season" varieties too.

6. Google the many home uses for vinegar, borax, and baking soda. They do amazing things for you and cost a lot less than most cleaning agents!

7. Teach your kids good home practices like turning off water when brushing teeth, shutting doors immediately (when running air or heat).

8. Find ideas online on how to reuse common every day objects in amazing ways. It's fun!

9. Give away unwanted items (try your local yahoo group for recycle, reuse aka Freecycle)

10. Plant a tree or invest in something green....think about things that last...

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Weekend Plans


1) Go see Star Trek with hubby (matinee)

2) Clean Garage or Go Bikeriding....

3) Grill some chicken outdoors with some corn on the cob and baked potatoes...yum


1) Clean garage if I didn't do it Friday.....OR...start pulling out all the summer clothes from the attics...

2) Attend a BBQ at my sister & brother-in-laws...

3) Enjoy the rest of the weekend off!!!! Happy Memorial Day!


It's amazing how important numbers become when we get older. I remember thinking - "I'll never use this math when I grow up, why do I have to learn it??". Now, numbers are just all important.

How much is in our bank account, how much debt do we have out there? What do we need to save for....etc.

Of course for me right now, the all important number....what I weigh! I weighed in this morning for our "Biggest Loser" contest. I was 2 ounces shy of a 2 pound loss. Of course the scale that I have at home says I've lost about 7 or 8 pounds since Christmas...which is fabulous. I just need to lose about 6 more and I'll be able to fit in all the summer clothes from last year.....

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Muscle Twitching

I've really been trying to get healthier - and exercise at least 30 minutes a day. I'm lucky enough to work next to the Neshaminy State Park so we just walk right across the street (my walking buddy & I) and we're on great trails with beautiful scenery. Once we come down towards the Delaware river, there's a beautiful (albeit sometimes foggy) view of the Philadelphia city skyline...very nice.

As soon as I get back to my desk (ready to take a nap) I can feel the muscles in my legs twitching all over. Apparently, that's signs of a good workout! :)

I'm hoping tomorrow morning's weigh in goes well!!! According to my scale I'm down 2 - 2 1/2 lbs, but a lot could happen before tomorrow....

I'm absolutely avoiding the hot dogs at our picnic tonight! Yikes - way too much sodium!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Biggest Loser Challenge At Work

Last Thursday I plunked down $10 on this challenge. Every week we go weigh in (those who've joined the challenge) and if we gain we've got to pay a $ for every pound....well, seeing how I'm in my own little recession here, what with Disney coming up and private school tuitions and deposits on braces, I do NOT want to have to add in any money to the fact, I'd kinda like to win this particular challenge so I can get the pot! :)

Meanwhile, I'm down 7 lbs from where I was a few months ago so I'm on a roll here....

Only 31 more pounds to lose to get from this (point left) to this (on the right)! LOL

Great Read - Bergdorf Blondes

Just the kind of read you need when your world is just too serious. It's bubbles and whimsy all rolled up into something so fun you hate to put it down. I really hope they make this one a movie! :)

Disney is Coming

June 5th we are departing Philly for Disney.

We'll have to stop in Savannah overnight - it's a shame we can't spend a day there, Savannah is so pretty....
I'm very nervous about the whole thing - the trip, the car not falling apart, the heat and humidity down there (I'm asthmatic and have very low tolerance for heat)...but hey, it will be something to talk about for the rest of our lives, won't it? :) The road trip down to Disney - my kids first time seeing it all....

Meanwhile, when to pack, what to much to do!

Schedule until Vacation....Crazy....Crazy....

Monday - work until 5, drive home, cook up some leftover pizza and such for over to BJ's to pick up stuff for the Youth Picnic Wednesday home, drive over to the kids school for the parent teacher at 7 (you think I'll make it?), drive home....

Tuesday - work until 5, drive home, cook up some more leftovers (pork & rice this time), then either head to BJ's if I don't make it tonight or head over to my friend's son's Kindergarten graduation (awwww), then home...

Wednesday - work, home, something quick to eat, piano lessons unless the teacher's still sick, then the Youth picnic....home

Thursday - work, home, finally a decent non-rushed meal...(I'm going to definitely check out the garlic chicken on this blog.

Friday - work until 1 - yippee! The beginning of summer hours at work!!! Go home and either ride bikes with hubby, or go see the new Star Trek movie with him, or clean out the garage....I can't wait until my free weekend!

Friday, May 15, 2009

I love Giveaways...

Curbly has a giveaway for some absolutely beautiful paper..they want to know if you win what you'll do with it...I love reading all the comments about what others would do.

Click this link and check it out! :)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Lovely spring

It's raining today but here are some beautiful spring pics to perk us all up...these are from my latest Spring Theme Photog Swap. Some were taken at the Winterthur mansion and some at Longwood Gardens. Aren't they beautiful?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

International Recipe Swaps

I posted a couple of these on Swap-Bot, hoping to get some exotic recipes to try - here are mine:
From the first swap - My taste of Philly:


1/2 cup butter
1 (8 ounce) package Philadelpha cream cheese
(I use the third less fat one)
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 cups milk
6 ounces grated Parmesan cheese
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
Dash of Nutmeg

Melt butter in a medium, non-stick saucepan over medium heat. Add cream cheese and garlic powder, stirring with wire whisk until smooth. Add milk, a little at a time, whisking to smooth out lumps. Stir in Parmesan and pepper. Remove from heat when sauce reaches desired consistency. Sauce will thicken rapidly, thin with milk if cooked too long. Toss with hot pasta to serve.

This next one is a favorite for making when I'm having parties...people always rave about it and ask for the recipe. It's really flattering because it's so simple!

Italian Roast Beef (for sandwiches)

Rump Roast (about 3 lbs)
Packet of Good Seasonings Italian Dressing (or any Italian Dressing packet)
Jar of Pepperoncini peppers (the ones that come with the Papa John’s pizza – they are not superhot but have a nice kick to them)
1 can beer OR 1 cup beef broth

Trim roast and place in bottom of crockpot. Sprinkle Italian dressing packet all over roast, including the sides. Pour can of beer all over, then pour half the juice from the pepper jar in. Cook on low 8-10 hours, adding remainder of peppers (including juice and whole peppers) to crock 1 hour before serving.

Shred meat and place on toast with melted provolone cheese – Yum!!

The following is a recipe for my mother in law's good old fashioned Italian Style Chicken soup. She was one of those real Italian mothers who always made you eat until you were sick - saying "Manja" Eat More! My husband can make this now and it's close but I don't think anyone can make it exactly like she did! It's so awesome to eat when it's cold out too!

Mom's Chicken Soup

Boneless breasts or chicken pieces (your choice)
Large pot of boiling salted water - preferably about 10 cups of water
3 celery stalks whole
4 or 5 carrots whole
2 or 3 potatoes, whole & peeled
1 large onion, whole, stuck with 3 or 4 cloves (just poke the whole cloves into the onion)
8 boullion cubes (depending on how large your pot is). 8 cubes to 10 cups
Splash of tomato sauce
(Optional, an egg broke into the boiling water)
Oregano to taste
Basil to taste
Parsley to taste
Salt & pepper to taste

Put chicken in pot and boil, skimming the scum off the top of the water when necessary. When chicken cooked, add rest of ingredients (add splash of tomato sauce towards the end). Cook on a high simmer with the top of the pot not completely covering the pot (leave a crack). Simmer for 1 hour at least or until all the veggies are super tender. When close to serving, cook up 1-2 pounds (depends on how many people you're serving) of Orzo pasta (or your favorite small pasta).

In our family, we then remove the chicken and place in a separate bowl. My husband actually takes some of the potatoes and carrots out, adds butter and mashes - he swears it's delicious!

Place cooked orzo in bowl, add soup and parcel out chicken. Top with grated Parmesan cheese. Delish!!!

For Dessert - the most popular thing around here is Cheesecake...of course we use Philadelphia brand cream cheese - yet again! LOL

New York Cheesecake (the easy version)

15 graham crackers, crushed
2 tablespoons butter, melted
4 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese
1 1/2 cups white sugar
3/4 cup milk
4 eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup all-purpose flour

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 9 inch springform pan.
2. In a medium bowl, mix graham cracker crumbs with melted butter. Press onto bottom of springform pan.
3. In a large bowl, mix cream cheese with sugar until smooth. Blend in milk, and then mix in the eggs one at a time, mixing just enough to incorporate. Mix in sour cream, vanilla and flour until smooth. Pour filling into prepared crust.
4. Bake in preheated oven for 1 hour. Turn the oven off, and let cake cool in oven with the door closed for 5 to 6 hours; this prevents cracking. Chill in refrigerator until serving.

This last swap's German recipes (I lived in Germany when I was younger and loved these!)
Yaeger Schnitzel
4 boneless veal cutlets OR 4 boneless pork chops or sliced pork tenderloin
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup plain bread crumbs
A dash of salt
A dash of pepper
A dash of paprika
2 eggs
1/2 cup oil

Rinse meat under cold water. Pat dry with a paper towel and tenderize on both sides. Sprinkle meat on both sides with salt, pepper, and paprika. Beat the eggs and dip both sides of meat into the mixture. Roll both sides in flour, then dip into the blended egg again. Now dip both sides into the bread crumbs.
In a large skillet, heat the oil and fry the chops on both sides over medium heat for about 20 minutes, or until both sides are crisp and golden. Tip: Don't cover the pan while cooking or the meat won't be crispy. After the meat is done cooking, pat with a paper towel to remove the excess oil.

Jaeger (Mushroom) Sauce for Schnitzel

1 cup fresh mushrooms chopped (or use canned strained mushrooms)
1 1/2 cup water (or dry white wine – I like the wine flavor best)
1/2 onion, diced
1 package brown gravy mix
2 tablespoons margarine
2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
Sour cream to taste (at the end)

Melt margarine in a large saucepan. Add onion and mushrooms and fry until golden. Add water or wine, bring to a boil, and blend in the brown gravy mix. Reduce heat to medium and cook for about 5-10 minutes. Before serving, add sour cream and sprinkle with finely chopped parsley.
(Some people add crumbled bacon to the sauce while cooking – it does add some flavor – it’s another option)

Serve with steak fries – Yum!!!


4 large carrots
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup dark beer
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar

Peel and slice carrots. Melt butter in medium-size frying pan; add beer and carrots. Cook slowly until tender, stirring frequently. Stir in salt and sugar. Cook for another 2 minutes and serve hot.

German Rye Bread

2 pkg Active Dry Yeast
1/2 c Warm Water (110-120°F)
1 1/2 c Milk; Lukewarm
2 tbs Sugar
1 tsp Salt
1/2 c Molasses
2 tbs Butter
3 1/4 c Rye Flour; Unsifted
2 1/2 c Bread Flour; Unsifted

Dissolve yeast in warm water. In a large bowl combine milk, sugar, and salt. Use a mixer to beat in molasses, butter, yeast mixture and 1 cup of rye flour. Use a wooden spoon to mix in the remaining rye flour. Add white flour by stirring until the dough is stiff enough to knead. Knead 5 to 10 minutes, adding flour as needed. If the dough sticks to your hands or the board add more flour. Cover dough and let rise 1-1/2 hours or until double. Punch down dough and divide to form 2 round loaves. Let loaves rise on a greased baking sheet until double, about 1-1/2 hours. Preheat oven to 375°F. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes.

Use real butter on top of this bread – sooo good!

Gluhwein (great in the winter or for New Year's eve)

1 bottle of red table wine
1/4 cup water
1 cup sugar
2 whole cloves
2 cinnamon sticks
lemon and orange peel

Boil all ingredients together except the wine and reduce by half. Strain and add the wine. Bring the mixture almost to the boiling point. Serve hot.


1 3/4 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 oz. semisweet chocolate
1 stick butter
3/4 cup granulated sugar
4 eggs
1 teaspoon almond extract
2 cups whipping cream
2/3 cup confectioners sugar
1/3 cup kirsch (cherry liquor)
16 oz can pitted red tart cherries drained (reserve liquid)
12 maraschino cherries with stems
Chocolate curls

You need two 9-inch round cake pans. In a bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt. In a double boiler or microwave, melt chocolate over low heat. Cool.
In another mixing bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating after each addition. Add melted chocolate and gradually add the flour mixture. Add almond extract. Pour batter into greased and floured pans.

Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 30-35 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool in pan 5 minutes, then on a wire rack. Cut each layer horizontally, to make four layers.

You will need a pastry bag with a star tube. In a mixing bowl, beat cream until stiff. Gradually add confectioners' sugar. Sprinkle 1/3 kirsch on a layer of the cake. Cover with whipped cream and add 1/3 of the drained cherries. Place a second layer on top and repeat. Then add the third. Top the cake with a fourth layer. Spread 2/3 of the remaining whipped cream on the top and sides of the cake.

Place the last of the whipped cream in a pastry bag and pipe rosettes of whipped cream around the top edge. Top rosettes with stemmed cherries and garnish top center and sides with chocolate curls (made by shaving a chocolate bar with a vegetable peeler).Enjoy!!

Spring Cleaning Woes

Ok, so I've got the kitchen mostly done. I've cleaned out both refridgerators (we've a small one for drinks) and cleaned the inside and the outside of the windows and the walls and the door frames, cabinets, baseboards, and the sills....I cleaned out the medicine cabinet (in the kitchen because it's not good to keep medicines in humid bathrooms), cleaned out three junk drawers and replaced the rug and dish towels...I've started on the living room - cleaned the stair bannister, dusted, vacuumed, cleaned the picture frames...why don't I feel happy about this?? I can't imagine the 50's woman was happy about cleaning. Maybe happier than I am because she got to stay home and do it full time, so it probably wasn't as much of a task.

Working and being a mother and a homemaker is tough. It's so many jobs thrown together with so limited time to get things completed. When will I have time to start cleaning out the kids rooms and give away (or yard sale) all the toys that are still lurking about from when they were 4? When will I have time to pull down all the summer clothes and put away the winter?? It's such a daunting task, this Spring Cleaning...

Friday, May 8, 2009

ADD & Me

I'm not sure how old I was when I realized I had ADD. Probably in my early 30's.

For me, I feel constantly overwhelmed to the point that I stop doing everything....or just procrastinate and then freak out when someone's coming over at 6 and the house is still a mess at 3!

I procrastinate because my mind says "ya know, if you don't think about this at all, and you do something else, this task might just go away"...what baloney! It doesn't go away, it just gets worse. Then you're even more overwhelmed and you slide into that little thing called depression.

It's really quite frustrating. Like weight loss. The harder you try to think about overcoming your issue, the bigger the issue gets!

Meanwhile...I guess I'll google holistic therapies for ADD and see what I find! :)

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Zazzle Fun!

I recently uploaded some pictures to Zazzle. It's a really cool site where you can create mousepads and t-shirts and postcards with your own pictures!

Check out my site:

I'm so jazzed I made my first sale already (after 2 wks) and I haven't even uploaded all my pictures yet!

Ding, Dong, Avon Calling!

Many people think it odd that I took up selling Avon on the side last year. Well, I love Avon. The funniest thing is that my mom was an Avon lady too. I remember when I was a little girl growing up in Georgia, I walked miles down our country road with my mother to deliver some Avon to a sweet little Pakistani woman. I remember it vividly, because she served us up some Pakistani pancake type things that were just delicous. (yes, I relate most things with food)

I myself think it's pretty amazing that a brand that's been around since my grandmother's time is not only still in business, but it's thriving! So many American companies have not been so fortunate. Remember the Pontiac?

Of course I'm not in it for the money - I am not near pushy enough and don't have much time to even remember to give out catalogs much less ask for orders - but the people I know will order occasionally, remembering when I mention the beautiful lipstick or gloss I have on is Avon. No - I'm more in it for myself.

Last year I noticed an Avon brochure sitting on a trash can at a flea market. Well imagine my surprise when I picked it up and saw lip glosses for $1.99! And Hannah Montana products...and hip, fashionable jewelry...I was intrigued. At that point I had to do a little comparison shopping....and I visited my local Wal-Mart. My facial cleanser was more expensive than was my makeup...and my shampoo! Well, that pretty much caught my attention I set out to find someone to buy Avon from. Amazingly enough, not one person in my circle sold Avon....hmmmm....opportunity....and it was only $10 to sign up to sell it! So low and behold...I am your new and improved AVON lady! :)
I bet you have an Avon story too!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Desserts & more

I think I could literally read blogs all day and not get bored. I mean, really. Anything you're interested in, someone's probably blogged about. I found a really cool site today that has some awesome healthy recipes posted like this delicious looking Springtime Veggie burger, plus she is just plain fun to read.

Right now if you visit her site and post a comment, you'll be entered in a chance to win a copy of her new book "Sweet Freedom", loaded with desserts without wheat, eggs & refined sugars. I don't know about you, but like contests... Plus, the book looks really cool.

DH is allergic to eggs, so it's always fun trying to find recipes that are creamy and delish that he can share in. Yum, doesn't this fruity dish look good?

Where is that Yellow Thing & Free Stuff...

It's peeking, but unfortunately not for long...

How long will this rain last you might ask.....hmmm....the weather channel says we might possibly see the sun again tomorrow, but who knows. We're all starting to get a little depressed here in Philly, well except for getting the free chicken from Oprah & KFC. I got my coupon, did you get yours??

I'm all for free stuff, especially when it's truly free. Like the free tea today from Arby's. Just tell them "I'm parched, Fruitea me!"and you get to try it for free.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Dinner & a Movie (or in my case a book)

Here's Monday night's dinner -

Easy Homemade chicken pot pie...

Preheat the oven to 350.
Mix first five ingredients

1 1/2 cups chopped chicken (I use leftover rotisserie)

2 cans mixed vegetables, drained (you can use frozen but you'll have to nuke a few min 1st)

1 can green beans, drained (I love these, you can use an extra can of whatever your fave is)

1 can low fat low sodium cream of mushroom soup

1/4 cup 1% milk

(season this mix to your taste - I use Nature's Seasonings)

Prepare bottom of Pie crust - Spray or brush w/olive oil, salt & pepper, poke bottoms w/fork) then prebake for 5 min

Place mix in prebaked crust, place top crust on top, fork edges to make neat, spray (or brush) w/olive oil, and bake 30 minutes or until your top crust is golden brown.
Serve with a delicious side salad and enjoy!
The book of the day/night was "Miss Julia Speaks Her Mind". I read this last night for about an hour and I'm half way through...

A Comedy of Errors...

As I'm thinking about my "day", yesterday was quite a doozy. I got a ride in to work and over to pick up my car by a friend who I also work with and when we're about 5 minutes away from the mechanic, I get a phone call. My daughter forgot her key and her and my son are locked out. Well, nevermind that the bus driver is super-super nice and will sit there with them on the bus until I get there - nevermind the fact that it's pouring buckets out and I still have to get to my car, pay for the repair and get home....I get in the car and the gas light is on!!! What else can go wrong you might ask? Well, upon attempting to pump the gas, the pump won't work because the metal piece won't slide up! I've got to go get the attendant (unfortunately in PA we've got to pump our own gas) and he even struggles with it to get it open.

Tell me please you've had one of these days...rain, rain GO AWAY!

Monday, May 4, 2009

The clothes knows

Have you ever noticed that clothing ranks you?
Really. If you didn't know that, ask someone who works in the Fashion industry or even a typical high school student.

If you're not up on the latest fashion, if you're not wearing "someone" - you get treated differently than those who are.

Of course, sometimes you're treated with respect, envy and admiration - sometimes you're ignored completely.

Why is that?

A day in the Life...

I'm hooked on Swap-Bot. When I say I'm hooked - I'm really hooked. I can't imagine life before or without it as I am just having too much fun.

Do you know that excitement of opening the mail and actually receiving something addressed to you personally? And by that of course I mean it's not a bill, or junk mail or any other such nonsense. It's actually for you!

My latest swap is called "A day in the life" and you're supposed to send your partners out some information about a typical day. Of course, the anal photog I am, I want to wait to do this until I've got some pictures to send with it!

I received a couple of emails from partners detailing their days and by George, each one was very interesting! I got one from a gal in NYC, one from a chickadee in Finland and one from a darling little girl in Croatia! I mean, how interesting is that!?

It got me thinking. Wow....will people be totally disappointed when they read my typical day??? I mean, I don't really live anywhere exciting (although I'm near somewhere I'm not actually in it), and I don't have a really exciting job or anything spectacular. What do I really have to offer? Well, when you think on it, that's just hilarious!! It's my life of course, and it's definitely somewhat interesting or I'd already be completely mad now, wouldn't I?

Well, I'll be sure to post back when I get my thoughts (and pics) together so you can judge for yourself...meanwhile I'm off to pick up the car from the mechanic! G'Night!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Peek from my windows

Here are some pics from one of my latest swaps...we were to send out pics from our home windows so we could share experiences.

Of course, I received pics with mountain views from Washington, pics from Finland, and beautiful Bath in the UK so my own views seem somehow substandard...hmmmm

101 Things I need or want to do in the next 1001 days

This was for another swap - I thought I'd share...

1) Finish my taxes (all of them!) ----I got this one done, no worries!
2) Clean my kitchen
3) Wash all my curtains
4) Clean my room and clear out all the clothes that don’t fit!
5) Organize and clean my daughter’s room – Give away all her old toys
6) Do the same for my son’s room – get rid of old toys too
7) Strip the wallpaper in the downstairs bathroom that’s already peeling
8) Paint that bathroom (with a texture to make it more like faux marbling)
9) Find homes for all the junk laying around that I don’t know what to do with
10)Trim the bushes out back before they start growing and cover up my clothesline again like last year
11)Plant some tomatoes (which involves prep like tilling)
12)Organize my office
13)Organize and document all the Avon I have in stock
14)Plan a Spring Fling Avon event
15)Hold the Event and Sell at least $150 worth of stuff
16)Get a new Haircut
17)Learn how to crochet – I bought the stuff, I just don’t know how to read instructions apparently!
18)Pay off my Platinum visa
19)Spend a day with just my daughter
20)Spend a day with just my son
21)Spend a day with just my husband
22)Re-Learn some German (I have a Berlitz German in 30 days I just started today)
23)Clean out the trunk of the car – it’s scary but I can’t fit groceries in it!
24)Clean and organize the garage (you can barely walk in there – just as scary!)
25)Have my girlfriend Vera over for dinner (it’s been forever!)
26)Have a BBQ and invite my Pastor and his family (also been forever!)
27)Plant some flowers out front around the front of my window (which involves a lot of prep too!)
28)Lose 20 pounds
29)Lose another 20!
30)Give blood ( I can’t – I’m not allowed cuz’ I lived in Germany)
31)Write a list of things I’m thankful for
32)Write a list of people I need to send cards to (I’m always forgetting birthdays)
33)Go on an unplanned cruise!
34)Get all the pictures that I have just thrown in boxes and put them in albums
35)Go hiking in the Poconos
36)Go rafting too
37)Finish reading all the books I keep saying I’ll get to in my house
38)Organize and hold an Avon fundraiser to make President’s club and get a better discount!
39)Ride my bike every day for at least a week in a row, but get on a regular plan to do it
40)Take my kids fishing (for the first time)
41)Take my kids to Disney for the first time (planned for June)
42)Journal all the stuff we do at Disney
43)Teach my son to ride a bike
44)Take the kids to a roller rink (for the first time)
45)Surprise my husband one night with a racy outfit! LOL
46)Go up to Mystic again for a long weekend
47)Go to NYC again and see a show
48)Make an ATC
49)Make a Dotee or two
50)Brush up on my Russian
51)Take my kids to the circus
52)Bake a birthday cake from scratch
53)Visit my mom in RI
54)Send my sister (in CA) some recent pictures
55)Send my brother (in CA too) some recent pictures
56)Learn how to make sushi
57)Go kite flying
58)Go to the Beach in NJ
59)Go to the Beach in MD
60)Strengthen my core with exercise
61)Go with my husband dancing (like ballroom)
62)Visit the Camden Aquarium with the kids
63)See the Liberty Bell
64)See the Statue of Liberty
65)Go in the Metropolitan Museum of Art
66)Go through a corn maze and get all the clues
67)Sing Karaoke (I’ve always been to scared to do it!)
68)Plant a tree
69)Go on a family picnic to the park with actual picnic gear!
70)Write a poem or two (It’s been awhile)
71)Have a summer journal of all the things we do as a family
72)Go camping (for the first time)
73)Make a fire plan for the house (important!)
74)Make homemade ice cream
75)Get my sewing machine fixed and sew something!
76)Have a yard sale or two
77)Go to Knoebels
78)Visit Gettysburg
79)Have the kids help me wash the cars
80)Go to Cherry Crest Farm for the day
81)Take the kids to the Philadelphia Zoo
82)Learn the art of stamping
83)Write a short story and see if anyone thinks it’s good
84)Visit someone in a nursing home or hospital (most likely from my church)
85)Visit someone at their home who’s homebound (same)
86)Go for another Dexa scan (I’ve got Osteopeonia and I keep putting this off)
87)Organize my recipes
88)Eat more vegetables
89)Drink more water
90)Rearrange the furniture in the Living room
91)Paint the Living room
92)Play more board games with the kids
93)Watch the Lost and Heroes DVD’s so I know what’s going on!
94)Get rid of all the CD’s we don’t listen to
95)Get rid of all the old VHS tapes that are too babyish for my kids (at the yard sale!)
96)Read through the whole Bible
97)Get a gym membership
98)Learn how to play one song on the piano
99)Get into the practice of making my bed every day
100) Get a “real” massage – one over 30 minutes!
101) Stop using ziplocks and replace them with containers (I already started this but need to buy more containers