Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

After, so far:


Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Earth Day

I am hoping on Tuesdays to challenge myself to do something for our earth.  I love Erin's blog, The Conscious Shopper.  She mixes being good to the earth with being good to our wallets.  Since I have a very limited amount of money to "play" with each month, this is important to me.  I want to do so many things, but they just aren't all feasible on my income.  Erin helps me choose by doing the research for me.  I like that!  Plus, on Mondays she gives challenges to her readers.  Therefore, I may simply write here about her challenge and how I am going implement it, and sometimes I may have my own ideas!

Several weeks ago I won some produce bags from Erin.  She had a giveaway from EcoBags - right now she has a giveaway for some glass straws!!  Go look!  Anyway, I really like the bags.  I never realized how many of those plastic things I get at the store!  Plus, I like to buy in bulk when I can, not just for the packaging, but to reduce waste.  So these bags help out greatly!  After my first shop using the bags, I realized I needed more.  Instead of ordering more, I went to JoAnne's and bought some muslin to make my own.  I got some fabric paint and I am going to make some cool ones.  This is the week.  I am working on my kitchen some, but with the kids on spring break and my daughter gone, I don't have any driving responsibilities, so I am going to tackle the bags.

Do you use reusable bags at the grocery store?  Always?  Where do you store your bags so you won't forget?  Are you still using the plastic produce bags?  Think about ways you can reduce your use of plastic bags this week.

Check in on Crafty Friday to see some bags!  (good, give myself a deadline and I'll get it done!!!)  I'm such a smart girl!!!  :-)

Monday, March 29, 2010

Menu Plan March 29 to April 2

I have been a fan of for a long time.  I have participated in her Menu Plan Monday on and off for a while.  I find I spend less, and cook more when I plan my meals for the week.  Plus, if I get sick, Jack and the kids know what to fix.  It doesn't always work, but for the most part it does.  So in the spirit of getting more organized and adding more structure to my week, I am adding Menu Planning Mondays again.  I hope you may be inspired to cook at home, and make a plan.  Maybe you will even find a new recipe to use!

Monday:  Sloppy Joes w/ Sweet Potato Fries

Tuesday:  Terriyaki Chicken w/Roasted Broccolini
                  I'll make extra chicken for tomorrow night's dinner

Wednesday:  Oriental Chicken Wraps w/Roasted Red Potatoes
                       I'll use leftover chicken and boccolini, if there is any left

Thursday:  Sausage and Pesto Pasta
Friday:  Shrimp Packets

This week at Food Lion, Hillshire sausage is 2/$4 and Shrimp is BOGO!  So I worked my menu around that and the fact that I have one package of hamburger meat and one package of chicken breasts in the freezer.  Almost all of these recipes are new for me.  I don't usually do this, but with it being spring break, it will mostly be just the hubby and me eating and we don't mind trying new things.

I am struggling with buying meat at the regular grocery store.  I have seen the movie Food, Inc and was incredibly moved.  So, I am trying to find a way to eat less meat, and when I do buy meat to buy it either at Whole Foods or Trader Joe's.  Ultimately I would love to buy my meat from a local rancher!  It is a struggle though because this week at Harris Teeter, they have chuck roast BOGO!!!  That is a BIG savings!  But I don't know how that cow was treated and what that cow ate.  I would love to hear your own stories of how you are changing how you look at food, or are you?

What are you cooking this week?  Share your ideas in the comments, please.  This could be a great resource for us all.  If you are stuck, go visit OrgJunkie!!!

Saturday, March 27, 2010


When I was an elementary teacher, I was able to fly by the seat of my pants and be extremely flexible.  I have been wondering where that trait has gone.  But I have realized that I was able to be flexible because I was in an incredibly structured environment.  My days were mapped out one to two weeks in advance(depending on the principal).  Within that structure, I could be flexible.  Now that I am home, I no longer have that structure.  Therefore, I find being flexible extremely hard!  I NEED STRUCTURE.  I need a plan.  I like to know what my days are going to look like.  If there are no anchors, such as a game, carpool, meeting a friend, I feel lost.  I end up not getting anything done at all, and some days not even showering.  So, I am going to find some ways to structure my days.  I am starting with structuring my blog.  This will give me a purpose to write everyday, and I am hoping that after I write for the blog, I can move straight into my other writing.  I will let you know how that goes.

Here is the structure I am proposing for my blog:
Monday:  Menu Planning
Tuesday:  Earth Day
Wednesday: Wordless Wednesday
Thursday:  Love Thursday
Friday:  Creative Crafts

I am excited to have something to look forward to each day.  I hope you will join me to see how it goes and if I can come up with something funny, insightful or inspiring each day.

This sense of structure is weighing heavy on me as I look forward.  My son is leaving home soon.  My daughter is entering the teen years of pulling away from her family and being a little more independent. Gone are the days of sitting down together after school and watching a tv show together, or going to the mall together, or doing much of anything together.  Her days are filled with studying, babysitting, going to choir, and hanging with her friends. So when the boy leaves and takes his baseball games with him, I will lose a lot of my structure, a lot of what I look forward to every day.  So what to do with this time when I do feel well?  I have many thoughts and interests which I need to begin to pursue.  Because a person who needs structure tends to become depressed when she doesn't have structure.  I'm just saying.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Love Thursday (it's back!)

I think I will begin something I "borrowed" from a blogger called "Love Thursday". On my first blog I did this and it caught on with many of my friends. So on Thursdays, tune in to see what I have loved about my week.

This week I am loving:

1. Getting to watch my boy pitch a whole game, hit a homerun, and win his first game of the season!

2. Getting to watch my boy in another game, hit another homerun! and win their 2nd game of the season!

3. Watching my daughter's excitement....oh to be young again!

4. Working in the yard with my husband....because of his work, we had NEVER done that before.

5. Spending the warm, sunshiney weekend with my husband watching baseball games and eating out!

6. All the beautiful bird returning and feeding on my birdfeeder!

7. Seeing the beautiful flowers emerging in my yard.

8.  Getting word that my beautiful cousin, Stephanie delivered a precious baby boy this morning, welcome to our family, Jacob!

What are you loving this week? (leave a comment sharing what you love)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Writer's Block

I can't write. Every time I sit down and begin a thought, my brain freezes and I can't develop my ideas. It is frustrating. UGH!!!! Maybe I shouldn't have declared myself a writer.

Friday, March 5, 2010


What are you afraid of? Spiders, bugs, heights, rollercoasters, water? It seems we all have fears, some seem sillier than others. I realized lately that I am dealing with fear in my life. The fear of losing my son.

My son is a senior in high school this year. He is going to play baseball in college and has the desire to play pro if possible. So we are trying to discern with him what is the best option for him as far as schools go. In so doing, I am quickly coming to the realization that he is leaving my home. I am not so delusional that I think by living at home he has been out of harm's way. But I guess I have felt some control, albeit a false sense of control. So what are my fears you ask?

Fear #1 - He will die. He will be in a car wreck and die. He will get sick and die. He will live in a house with someone who has guns and he will die. I don't know....just that he will die.

Fear #2 - He will not have the opportunity to realize his dream of playing pro ball. There are two factors in this. One, he will be stupid and do something stupid and get kicked out of school. Two, he will get hurt and not be able to play anymore. (and of course, he will die and not be able to play)

Fear #3 - He will change and not want to come home anymore. He will get out in the world and find a different way to live and have no interest in coming home.

Fear #4 - He will find a girl and become so consumed with her that he never comes home again. And she will not like us and therefore, not want to encourage him to come home.

You see, this boy is the child I longed for. He is the baby I dreamed of having. I spent 2 years, 6 months trying to conceive him. He is my dream come true. I then spent the next year trying to keep him alive. I held him on two different occasions not knowing if he would live or die. He captured my heart on September 29, 1992, and has never let go.

I realize I was given this child to raise, not keep forever. I realize that my ultimate job is to raise him to be a fantastic adult. I realize that in doing that, I must let him go. And I will. I will.

But right now I must give voice to these fears. For the one thing I have learned about fear, is that it grows in the dark and in silence. So, Fear, you are released.

And Stephen, you are too. Well, not right now, but you will be, really, I promise.....