Monday, January 30, 2012

Mother Board This And Hard Drive That...

     We are a household of, no less than, seven laptops. Two belong to my married son and his wife. Two more belong to my college age kids, which they paid for. One is a hand-me-down from a son to a daughter and two are mine. One was given to me as a hand-me-down and I bought a new one, my first real laptop, when the hand-me-down failed. I had to explain this so we don't sound like spoiled American capitalist pigs, which we are. We're just not as spoiled as some others.
     My first hand-me-down computer lasted me three years. My brand new one didn't make it four months. My son-in-law diagnosed the problem as the mother board. And what a mother it is. I now have to contact the maker, Toshiba, and find out about sending it away to be fixed. My old computer, also a Toshiba, also has a mother board issue. I was hoping he could get that one fixed so I would at least have something to work on while my new one is globe trotting. And last, but not least, my daughter's laptop needs a new hard drive. I am up to my eyes balls in computer speak and I don't want to be. I just want my stuff to work like it should, forever. Is that really too much to ask?


Friday, January 27, 2012

This Can't Be Happening!!!

     My brand new laptop has died. I'm not sure if it will require a burial or just major life support. In the mean time, it feels like everything has come to a stop. Funny how much you learn to depend on those things in your day to day life. You have no idea how many times a day I think, I'm going to look that up, or I'm going to check on that, but I can't and it's driving me crazy.
     The day we have some major disaster and the nation wide power grid goes down, you will all know just how I feel. The USA will under go some serious withdrawal, let me tell you. How will be do our banking without the internet? How will be entertain our kids for hours at a time? We will have to sit and talk to our husbands after the kids go to bed. No wonder the pioneers went to bed at sundown.
     I'm hoping my son-in-law can fix it this weekend. I'll let you know if I have to resort to strong meds to help me over the hump or if I am able to tough it out. :)

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Today It's All About The Book.

    Do you consider yourself a reader? I do. I love losing myself is a story with characters that I like and who I want to have over for dinner. Don't you just feel excited when you pick up a book and get past the first few pages when you meet the people and see what their deepest desire is and then you read a few more chapters and wonder how it is ever going to happen, and then when it seems that all is lost you hit those last few chapters and you start getting sad because the world is suddenly righting itself and you know you are almost to the end of the book, but you don't want it to end. And when it does end, you feel as if you have been on a journey, as if you have reached the desire of your heart right along with your favorite character. It is so satisfying.
     What book is on your keeper shelf, and if you're a real reader you know what a keeper shelf is, that you have read over and over? What book has changed the way you look at the world? What book makes you cry every time you read it? What book is just plain fun to read?
     I love to see the variety in all the books my friends read and I am looking to add to my rather substantial "to be read" pile so tell me here or you can tell me all about it on Facebook.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Thirty Minutes? Not In This Lifetime.

      Okay, anyone who knows me knows I have become just slightly obsessed with Pinterest. If you don't know what Pinterest is, I'll tell you. It is a virtual bulletin board, where you can pin whatever you like. There are all kinds of topics and you can do a search, kind of like on Google for anything you would like to find. You have followers and can follow anyone you want to, they see your pins and you can see theirs. It's really cool and fun. I think I have about seventeen boards at the moment ranging from Funny Sayings to Living Healthy to Fun Projects to Organization.
    On Pinterest, I found this list of house keeping chores that I pinned to my Organization board. I want you to notice the daily chores that are supposed to be done in 30 minutes.

     Now, maybe it's just me, but I don't think I could do all that daily stuff in 30 minutes. Let me give you an example of why and let me warn you the images you are about to see are disturbing and not for the faint of heart.
     This is my kitchen. You may think that no one had done the dishes in weeks, but you would be wrong. This is the accumulation of one day. They multiply and replenish right in my sink in a matter of minutes. This is also why I have two dishwashers in my kitchen. And even with that luxury, I can assure you that there are still lots of pots and pans that have to be washed by hand, dried and put away.
     And according to this list I should also be able to do the dishes, take out the trash, wipe down the stove and counter top, pick-up and put away, wipe down bathroom sinks and mirrors, make bed, vacuum (as needed) and laundry all in thirty minutes?
     All I can say is this is not the list of a person with more than one kid. And that kid is perfect, and she must have a perfect husband, no pets and she must move at the speed of light. To be fair. I could probably wipe down the stove top and counters, and make the bed in thirty minutes, on a good day. As for the rest of it, well, it ain't happening especially in thirty minutes.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Back To Reality

   I'm baaacccckkk. After a very busy week and a few days spent at a writer's retreat, I am back doing the mom thing. I have to say the hubby did a great job of keeping it all together while I was gone. My older kids pitched in too, thanks guys.
    Now, I am facing my daily reality, dirty bathrooms, laundry and dishes. Wouldn't it be nice if we could just not do all the stuff we have to do and just do all the things we want to do?
    What would you do if you had no responsibilities and could play all day? I would write and read and then change it up and read and write. In the spring I would garden for part of the day. And as long as we are living a fantasy here, I would eat all the bad-for-me foods I want and not get fat, well, fatter.
    Since I know I can't do this I have to find the good times amongst the responsibilities. Like yesterday after church my eight-year-old snuggled next to me on my bed and we watched Jurassic Park Three together. He is my baby and when he was little and the older kids were all in school we had this ritual where we would watch a movie together almost every day and snuggle on the couch. It was kind of like his nap time, but he never slept.
     Yesterday he said, "Mom, do you remember when we used to watch this movie together before I started preschool?"
     "I do."
     "I miss snuggling with you sometimes."
     What can I say. It touched my heart and I realized that reality can be pretty darn good. I'm going to make it a point to snuggle with him as much as I can until he won't snuggle with me anymore, because time goes by so fast.


Monday, January 16, 2012

Just A Few Days Away

    Tomorrow morning I am leaving for a two and a half day retreat with two of my writing friends. We are going to Star Valley Wyoming to visit another writing friend who misses the company of other writing type people. I can't even begin to tell you how excited I am. And I am grateful to the hubster for agreeing to postpone our night away from home to make it happen. Sometimes you just have to get away from your day to day life and do some evaluations from outside the box. You know what I mean?
     I am hoping to get a lot of writing done and maybe outline my next book. This is much more complicated than you may think because I am an outline writer or what we call a plotter. I like to know where my story and characters are headed before we set out on our journey. Though sometimes they like to change my plans half way through and do their own thing. I drives me crazy.
     If you think I'm crazy for talking about fictional characters like they are real people, well, I am. That's just the way it is. Ask any writer about naughty and side trip taking characters and they will roll their eyes and tell you horror stories of having to rewrite half of a book because the characters weren't playing nice.
     Creative people are a little bit odd, in case you didn't know, but I was odd anyway so deciding to put the stories in my head down on paper was not that big of a jump for me. And now I belong to a small community of odd, creative, wonderful and supportive people who totally understand me. We can talk about the personality traits of nonexistent people all day long and no one bats an eye. I love that.
     When I try to talk to the hubs about this kind of stuff I just get strange looks and I can tell the minute I've lost him. He may be looking straight at me, but his eyes kind of glaze over and he has a "I'm really thing about the Laker's game," look on his face, so I really appreciate all of my writing friends. They understand me and my peculiarities. Thank goodness someone does.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

I Believe In Christ

     I believe in Christ; he is my King! With all my heart to him I'll sing;
     I'll raise my voice in praise and joy, in grand amens my tongue employ.
     I believe in Christ he is God's son, on earth to dwell his soul did come.
     He healed the sick; the dead he raised. Good works were his; his name be praised.
     I believe in Christ; oh, blessed name! As Mary's son he came to reign
     Mid mortal men his earthly kin, To save them from the woes of sin.
     I believe in Christ, who marked the path, Who did gain all his father hath,
     Who said to men "Come follow me, that ye, my friends, with God may be."

     I believe in Christ-my Lord, my God! My feet he plants on Gospel sod.
     I'll worship him with all my might; He is the source of truth and light.
     I believe in Christ he ransom's me. From Satan's grasp he sets me free,
     And I shall live in joy and love, In his eternal courts above.

     I believe in Christ he stands supreme! From him I'll gain my fondest dream;
     And while I strive in grief and pain, His voice is heard "Ye shall obtain."
     I believe in Christ so come what may, With him I'll stand in that great day.
     When on this earth he comes again to rule among the sons of men.

     This is the hymn we sang at church on Sunday. It is one of my favorites. I love this song. It fills my heart with joy when I sing it. I wanted to share this with all of you because I'm tired of these pastors on T.V. saying that members of the LDS church aren't Christian. I am a Christian, because I believe in Jesus Christ. I believe he is my savior and redeemer. If that's not a Christian, I don't know what is. Many church's have differences of opinion when it comes to doctrine, so does that mean that the Baptists aren't as Christian as the Protestants, or that Catholics aren't as Christians as Jehovah's Witnesses. I don't think so. If you have different beliefs from me, I will treat them with the respect that they and you deserve, and I ask the same from you. The world is small and getting smaller, I think we should allow each other the room for differences without making it a fight.
     The world would be a kinder, more Christian place if we tried just a little bit harder.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

It's Avocado Time

     The UPS man came this morning to bring me a present from my Dad in California. I large box of avocados, that are still hard, but should be ready just in time for the Super Bowl. I love, love, love these avocados. They are the Fuerte type which means they are large and fleshy and delicious. I can't wait until they are ripe. The flavor is so good you can sprinkle a little salt and pepper on them and eat it just like that. They are so much better than the little wimpy avocados you get here in Utah that seem to rot before they ripen, when you buy them hard as rocks at the grocery store.
    I really like that my dad still loves me enough to think of sending me this treat. I was just like when I was at home in Cali and my dad would Bar-b-que steak and give me the center of the steak. Now that was living. Even after I was married with kids and we would go over the my parents house for dinner, I still got the center cut. I think it made my husband a little jealous. When he was a kid they had to ration the chicken legs they had for dinner, so to see me get such good cuts of meat must have been hard on him. However, it set the standard of treatment that I expected in the years that followed and he has done a pretty good job of keeping me just as spoiled as I have ever been. That or he just decided that he wanted to eat steak for dinner too. Either way it's a win-win situation.
     We eat really well around here, as most of you know it's a battle to keep the bulges away or at least caged in a tolerable manner.
     So thanks, Dad, for the treat, I will be thinking of you as I scoop the fleshy Yummyness. :)

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Italian Sausage And Bean Soup

    My daughter, Karrah made dinner for us last night and it was delish. She made Italian Sausage and Bean Soup. It has so much flavor. If you want to try it here's the recipe. By the way it is also lo cal. We found it in the Taste of Home Healthy Cooking Magazine.
     1 lb. bulk Italian sausage
     1 med. onion finely chopped
     3 cloves garlic, sliced (we use the little jar of chopped)
     4 cans reduced sodium chicken broth. 14 1/2oz
     2 cans pinto beans rinsed and drained. 15oz each
     1 can diced tomatoes, undrained
     1 cup medium pearl barley
     1 large carrot, sliced (we used the baby carrots in the bag and sliced them)
     1 celery rib, sliced
     1 tsp. minced fresh sage (we used dried)
     1tsp. minced fresh rosemary or 1/ 8 tsp. dried rosemary, crushed (dried)
     6 cups of chopped fresh kale. (we used mustard greens because we couldn't get kale)

     I sprinkled a little bit of shaved Parmesan cheese on mine. Yumm We also had garlic bread with it.
     1.  In a dutch oven, cook sausage and onion over medium heat until meat is no longer pink. Add garlic, cook 1 minute longer. Drain if there is too much grease.
     2.Stir in the broth, beans, tomatoes, barley, carrot, celery, sage and rosemary. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 45 minutes.
     3. Stir in kale, return to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 25-30 minutes or until vegetables are tender and kale is wilted.
    The prep time is only about 20 minutes it's the cooking time that takes a little longer, but you can do other things while your house is smelling delicious.

    I hope you like this it is yummy. According to the mag. 1 1/2 cups of this soup equals 339 calories. That's pretty good for a dinner that is this filling.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Another Emergency Room Visit For Me.

    I spent last night at the emergency room with my oldest daughter, Kristin. She called me late last night and said she had a fever and couldn't breathe. Since she has mild asthma, I was concerned. I went over and picked her up at 1:00am and headed to the hospital, while her hubby stayed with the kids. She was so dizzy from not being able to catch her breath that I had to get a wheelchair to get her inside. They gave her a breathing treatment and she could catch her breath a little better, but she was still in severe pain when she inhaled. The doctor, who was very nice, tried to tell her it was because she was having an anxiety attack do to her inability to catch her breath. Kristin and I looked at him and thought, "This guy has no idea what kind of pain tolerance Kristin has." After a while, when she was still in pain, they took a chest X-ray  and found a spot about the size of a quarter. Pneumonia is the official diagnosis. They finally gave her pain meds, steroids, antibiotics and we got to go home.
     The point of this is even when your kids are grown, with babies of their own, they still need their moms when they are sick.  And that Davis Hospital has the best ice in the world. I had three full cups while we were there. :)

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Where The Heck Is Winter?

    Where the heck is my snow?! I patiently wait through the long, hot summer for the white stuff to fall and I am still waiting and it's January for heaven's sake. Could this global warming stuff be the real thing? What will we do without wintertime?
     I'm dreaming of a white Christmas, only now I am having to dream of Christmas 2012. This stinks. This was the second brown Christmas in a row. I'm having snow cravings. Where is old man winter? Where is Jack Frost? Where is Frosty the Snowman. I can't handle this. It is fifty degrees outside. I want snow and I want it now. Who's with me?

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

A Few Observations About Dieting.

     As many of you know since Oct. I have been trying to drop a few(a lot) of pounds off of my puffy self. It's hard work, but I'm doing it. And to my dismay, I have found that a lot of the cliche's about losing weight are true, you really do have change your eating habits and your lifestyle if you want to lose weight permanently, which really stinks. I liked my eating habits. I liked snacking on Lays potato chips dipped in sour cream with an ice cold Coke. I enjoyed having chocolate ice cream with heavy whipping cream poured on top and stuck in the freezer until it got hard and then eating it with my eyes rolling back in my head in extreme pleasure. However, I didn't like that my fat jeans were getting too small and when both my parents were diagnosed with Diabetes, I knew it was time to make some changes. The strange thing is that I have had to change not only the way I look at food, but my grocery store shopping habits as well.
     It's funny how we don't think twice about buying two packages of Oreo's which now cost more than six bucks, but I wince when buying a pack of strawberries at $2.50 or a bag of Cuties. for $3.88. My cart now has more fruits and vegis in it than snack foods. What's even stranger is that my family gobbles down the fruit just as fast as the Oreo's, which I love to see. On Christmas day I made a huge vegi tray (no chips and dip this year) I had to refill it three times, and no one complained about it. I figured I would have a mutiny on my hands. My little granddaughter, Sofia loves sugar snap peas! Who knew!
     We have also stopped eating fast food so much, mainly because the cost was getting out of control. We have been cooking and eating real meals here at home much more often and really enjoying it. I love using my Le Creuset pot to make a big batch of White bean and chicken chili. I could go on and on about my pot, but that is a whole other blog. ")
     Let me just say that this whole trying to be healthier thing has been a learning experience for me that I never thought I could accomplish because, well because I have the back bone of over cooked spaghetti, but I'm working on it.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

You Gotta Love Little Boys

     You gotta love little boys. My son Scot came home from school today and was so excited to show me what someone gave him at school. He started to empty his pockets and I had a hard time not laughing. It was just like a movie or TV show as all his treasures started pouring out, a ball made of duct tape and scrap of paper with some code for a video game written on it, a piece of a broken toy and a few other tokens, until he found what he was looking for. A coin that someone gave him for one of the duct tape wallets that he and his brother having been making. Apparently they found a "how to" video on Youtube and they have been making these wallets and now they are trying to sell them at school. He was so happy that someone bought one, but he was more pleased with his coin. Life is so simple when you are eight years old. It makes you stop and appreciate the moment.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Welcome 2012, Here We Go!

     Well, here we are, at the beginning of a new year. I swear it should only be March of 2011, but no it's now 2012. Are you going to make any resolutions, or have you given those up? I for years made the same resolutions over and over, sometimes working on them and sometimes not. Here are a few of them.
 1. Get healthy, lose weight.
 2. Be a better mother and wife.
 3. Get organized.
 4. Save money.
 5. Read my scriptures.
     I had varying amounts of success with each one, but if I ever mastered them they wouldn't have been on the next years list and they always were. This year I am keeping the same ones, but I actually started them in October. I have lost just over twenty-five pounds since then and I am almost half way through The Book of Mormon, I sat down yesterday and made out menus for the entire month of January, minus a few days here and there, so I'm doing good on three out of the five. I need to work on the better wife and mother one and the saving money is going to be a toughy.
     What are your resolutions this year? Are they realistic, or are you shooting for the stars? Give a shout out and share them, maybe, I'll adopt a few more. Whatever they are, I am wishing for all of you a super great, successful, happy, healthy and wonderful new year. I thank you for all your support in reading my blog and my story. I appreciate the kind comments and encouragement. In fact I think I'm going to add one more resolution to my list, 6. To write more often and get something published, even if it's indie published on Amazon. Now there is a goal. :)
     If you can't leave a comment here, leave it on Facebook, I really would like to know what you resolutions are.