Friday, September 28, 2012

Some Time Today

     My new book has been uploaded and should be ready to go on Amazon and Barnes & Noble sometime today. This is always a nerve- wracking time for me. Mainly because I uploaded them myself and I'm not all that computer savvy. My son usually helps me and he is in California so I was on my own. As a non-techy person, I have this fear that I will hit the wrong key and it will all be sucked into the black hole never to be seen or heard from again. All that work, gone forever. My kids keep reassuring me that this can't happen, but I'm not convinced.
     I'm also nervous that readers won't like this book as well as they seem to like the first one. Releasing a book that you worked on for so long is like giving birth. You want everyone to think your baby is the prettiest baby ever, but not everyone is going to. This is where you tell yourself that you write for you and that is enough.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

We're all in This Together.

     I'm so sick of companies raising their prices just because they can, I'm ready to lose it. Jet Blue not only eliminated the early morning flight that the hubby takes to Cali on Sunday morning, they doubled the price of the one that he is now forced to take. It is taking a huge chunk out of our budget and I don't know where to make up the difference anymore.
     Now I'm hearing there is going to be a huge pork shortage,(Bacon? I like bacon) in addition to corn and other grain products, due to the drought. I'm trying to stock up my food storage room and my freezer, but how are we supposed to do that when we are getting gouged everywhere else.
     I seriously don't know what to do anymore. If you have found a way to save, send your ideas this way because I could sure use them. I already have been planning out our menus for the month and trying to keep the meals simpler, which is hard to do around here, but the grocery budget is out of control. Do you set a limit on your grocery shopping? Do you plan your menus? Have you given up eating out altogether? Are you eating more cost effective meals? What are your best savings ideas?
     I figure we are all in this together so lets help each other out.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

E-readers vs Paperback?

     I had a conversation with a friend the other day about the pros and cons of an e-reader vs a paperback and I was wondering what you all think. Do you prefer one over the other? If so, why?
     I have a Kindle, one of the less expensive ones. I love it for several reasons. First, I like to take it on trips because I can have hundreds of books on it and don't have to figure out in advance what I'm in the mood to read before I go somewhere. I also like the fact that it isn't back lit because my eyes tend to get tired. On the other hand I am thinking of getting one of the new Kindle Fires because it is back lit so I can read at night without the light on. I know, a real contradiction.
     Do you read on your smart phone or other device? I downloaded the Kindle app onto my iphone and I have to say, I'm enjoying being able to read at the airport as I wait for the hubs to fly in. I also downloaded my scriptures onto it so if you see me with my phone out at church I am probable reading them.
     I will never get rid of my collection of favorite paperbacks, but the books I have read lately have all been on my Kindle. So give a shout out as to which you prefer and be a part of a totally unscientific poll.

Monday, September 24, 2012

I Love Autumn

     I did it! I survived another summer. An overly hot, never ending, sweat-soaked summer. I always feel if I can make it to the 'ember' months I have a chance. Here it is, now officially autumn and I am still alive. Yayy!!!!!!!
     I love looking at the ten day forecast and seeing that the highest temperature is eighty degrees. I would however, like the nighttime temps to drop into the forties. Then I will know for sure that the worst is over. I love feeling the cool night air as I snuggle into my big comforter.
     People think we're crazy when I tell them we sleep with the windows open in the winter and not in the summer. I love fresh air, but it has to be cool fresh air. In the summer the air is too hot to be enjoyable.
     It's strange how all of my married kids have married people that come from homes where the temps were kept much higher than ours. They all think we are living in a refrigerator all summer because we keep our A/C so low. Duh, that's why we have A/C so we can be cold in the summer time.
     It's bad enough those few minutes when you have to walk into the fiery furnace that is your garage and get into your car and wait until the A/C kicks in. I hate that.
     Welcome autumn. I love your fall colors as the leaves change. I love the shorter days and being able to turn the oven on again without wondering if it is going to make you sweat like a marathoner. I love that the kids are back in school and I don't have to watch one more episode of the mind-numbing shows that they love. And I love my three car refrigerator, where my coke gets so cold I don't have to put it into the fridge. I love you autumn. 

Friday, September 21, 2012

Where Have I Been?

     I know I've missed a few days here and there of blogging and I didn't want you all to think I'd abandoned you. I didn't. I have been working my behind off editing my next book and outlining two others. It takes a lot of concentration. Something that is hard to come by here.
     I'm sure you all are waiting for my insights and daily words of wisdom. lol Like which way is the proper way to hang the TP. That blog got the most comments by the way. And I know you all love to hear about my struggles with children. Yes, even after raising seven of them to adulthood I still don't have all the answers. I have a few, but not all.
     Have a fun weekend everyone and I'll see you on the other side. Of the weekend that is. :)

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Just One Moment

     Sometimes life just sucks. It doesn't matter what you do right or wrong, things happen and you are left holding the proverbial bag. It's moments like these when you have to put on a smile and go on. Why? Because you don't have any other choice. There are people depending on you and like the old saying goes, "Life goes on."
     I'm not a person who likes to dwell on things that go wrong. I always feel like, life happens and it happens to all of us. And in the grand scheme of things, I would rather have my problems than someone else's because theirs could be so much worse.
     When I stand back and look over all the good things in my life I realize how lucky and blessed I am. I live in the greatest country on earth. I am healthy, my family is healthy, we live in an incredibly beautiful place and I know that all the trials we go through are just a moment in time.
     So I will choose to look at the bright side of life and be happy. Those are my thoughts for today.

Monday, September 17, 2012

How Weird Can One Family Get?

     I have come to the conclusion that we are a weird family. We go through these phases where we do or say the most random things and they go through the whole family for weeks and sometimes they stick around forever. 
     For instance our new family word is beverage. "I need a beverage." "A nice cold beverage would be perfect with this meal." "Mom! What kind of beverages do we have?"
     You get the point. It's kind of like finding a random object somewhere really strange. Like the Superman figurine at the bottom of a huge container of hair gel,or in the shower hiding behind the soap. Now, I know what your thinking, that in a house with small kids that happens, but it's not the small kids it's the adult kids that do these weird random things.
     They also like to have these conversations that start off normal and the next thing you know they are talking about monkey's egg laying habits in Iceland. We have had company over at times when this happens, they look at my kids with the most confused expressions on their faces you have ever seen, because they discuss these things in a totally serious manner.
     I'm sure our guests leave thinking we are the oddest family ever. Just like three years ago when we became enamored with peacocks. I don't know how and I don't know why. I do know that all of a sudden our house had pictures of peacocks everywhere. They were in the bathroom, on the ceiling above my bed and in the pantry in the kitchen. In fact the one in the pantry is still there.
     My kids like to randomly yell, "Peeeaaacoockkk!" out the window of our car at unsuspecting people as they walk down the street. Our t-shirts that my daughter had made for our family camping trip this summer had peacocks on them. If our last name was Peacock I could understand that, but it's not.
    We are just a weird family, fun but weird.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Take That Rocky Mountain!

     We got a letter from the electric company telling us that we are energy hogs. They even went so far as to compare our energy usage to our neighbors. Wasn't that nice of them. Apparently we use three times the amount of electricity as these energy conscious folks. And believe me we pay for the privilege.
     If you looked at every house that shares our property line the largest family has four people residing there.   
     What the people at Rocky Mountain Power have failed to take into consideration, however, is that we have 14 people living in our house right now. We also have five refrigerators, one freezer, two washers and dryers, TV's, laptops, and all the other assorted toys that we first worlder's enjoy. 
      If all the adults living here moved out and into their own houses we would have six different households spawning from us. If each of these households used two hundred dollars worth of electricity a month that would be more than double what we are paying this month, even with the A/C running 24/7 in August. When you look at it that way, we are saving electricity and resources.
     I wonder what they would do if everyone suddenly started to conserve energy in a big way and their revenue dropped drastically? How would they answer to the stockholders then? Rocky Mountain should be sending me a letter telling me what a good job we are doing or at least shut the heck up. After all we are paying for their summer vacations.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

The New Buffalo Wild Wings

     We tried the new Buffalo Wild Wings today. It was good. The service needs a little work. We got our appetizers after our entree was served. I hate that. And I had to remind them twice that I wanted my Chocolate Blender, which is kind of a shake with little pieces of ice and chocolate in it.
     The hubby says he'll give them some time to get it together and if we have bad service next time it's going on the bad list with Chilis. We have had so many two hour lunches at Chilis when we were aiming for 45 minutes that we have quit going. I do love to stop by and pick up chips and salsa to go. I have even had to wait 15 minutes just to have them hand me chips and salsa. How hard is that?
     At Olive Garden, other wise none as the OG, our favorite server is Heather. She's awesome. If she hadn't been there I would have quit going when they took Garlic Herb Chicken con Broccoli off the menu. We love Heather though so we keep going and I have found something else I enjoy so it all works out.
     A good lunch experience has to have great food and service to make it worth our dollars. When your are dealing with the public attitude is everything. I tell my kids that all the time.
     We are very excited that Texas Roadhouse will be coming soon. We love that place. As soon as they are open I'll let you know if its worth your time and money.
     Not that we eat out a lot or anything.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

School-Love it or Hate it.

     It's fun to see your young kids go off to school for the first time. I know many of you have withdrawals, and shed some tears, but it is special to watch them come home from their first few days filled with the wonder of learning.
     Do you remember when they first recognized a letter they had learned. "Look, Mom. That's a B. B is for boy and for ball."
     I remember all of my kids doing this. My husband still talks about that day in first grade when all of the sudden reading made sense to him and he ran home and told his mom, "I can read! I can read!" He became and avid reader until he found sports.
     My grandson Dawson just started kindergarten and the first day was rough for him. He decided at the last minute he didn't want to go. There were tears and sad faces. And that kid has the saddest face. It breaks your heart to see him upset. My daughter got him into the class and when he realized it was going to be okay she left. The other day Dawson came home excited because they did his letter in school that day. He told my daughter, "They did my letter today, Mom. I told me teacher, "That's my letter and she said, I know." Then wide-eyed he asked, "How did she know that was my letter?"
     School, the love-hate relationship for both parents and kids a like for generations, but there are those moments when, "You get it," and anything is possible.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Not Your Momma's Roast Beef Sandwiches

     As promised here is the recipe for what we had for dinner last night that I keep thinking about this morning. Yumm. We had French Dip Sandwiches, but not just any old French Dip will do in this house. These are special. Here's the ingredients. You will have to adjust the amounts for your family since I'm pretty sure most of you don't cook for between 14 to 25 people every night, so you're on your own in adjusting.
      1 bag of rolls. I bought steak rolls from Walmart.
      2lbs of roast beef I had sliced at the deli counter.
      Au jus the little packet that you mix with water. Usually found on the gravy aisle if you've never bought it before.
     Sliced cheese. I had cheddar and provalone on hand.
     And the secret ingredient. Ranch Dip made with sour cream. The kind you use on football day.

     Slice the rolls in half and butter them. Put them in the oven on broil until the butter is melted. Don't let them over cook. Just a tiny bit golden is what you are going for.
     Slice the roast beef into about 1/2 to 1 inch slices. This makes it almost like using shaved meat without the extra cost of having them shave it. I'm cheap like that.
     When the rolls are golden take a tablespoon of ranch and put it on one side of the roll, pile meat on top, add a slice of cheese and back into the oven until cheese starts to melt. Again don't over do it. They cook fast.
     Take out and dip in the Au Jus and eat. I put my rolls in on a cookie sheet.
     Let me know if you try these. I would love to know what you think of them. 


Friday, September 7, 2012

It's the Little Things

     They say in marriage it's the little things. It's true, it's the little things that drive you crazy. My husband has had the same cell phone forever. He needs a new one desperately. I keep trying to get him to dive in and do it, but he puts it off.
     With that being said, I have one question. How on earth do you miss calls when you have had a cell phone for so long that you need to replace it, because you wait too long to answer. His phone will ring and he will look to see who's calling. I will say, "Are you going to answer that?" I hate his ring tone. It's the one the phone came with and he's never changed it, ever.
     He'll say, "Yes, I'm going to answer," and then he waits and misses the call. It makes me insane.
    I change my ring tone every so often and after two or three calls I know just how much time I have to answer before the call is missed, so why doesn't he?
    I'll even tell him, "You're going to miss the call." He says, "No I won't," and then he misses it. Sometimes you have to wonder if husbands do these things on purpose just to make you crazy.
    Ring, ring, ring, ring, ring, ring, ring, ring, ring, ring, ANSWER YOUR PHONE!!!! 

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Gimee, Gimee, Gimee!

     Today's blog is sort of a continuation of yesterdays complaining about McDonald's money grubbing ways.
     What is up with fast food restaurants putting out tip jars?! What the heck! Like they don't charge enough as it is. We went through a drive thru recently that had a number 10 can hanging by a string and someone had written the word TIPS on it. I made me really uncomfortable. I mean someone let me know if I am wrong, but isn't the whole idea of tips to reward a server for a job well done? Did that change and I not hear about it?
     And if that is still the point of tips, why would I tip someone who hands me my food from a window? There is no serving involved in that.
     Things are changing is this world and not for the better. It seems everyone wants something for nothing.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

McDonalds and Their Penny Pinching Ways

     There is something that has been bugging me for a while now and I have to get it off my chest. It's McDonald's, they are not exactly my version of haute cuisine. They are more like fried pork rinds and store brand pop in front of the TV watching The Price is Right. (Shiver) So why do you have to fight them to get what you need to enjoy (gag down) your meal?
     Last week I went through the drive thru and ordered 3-20 piece chick Mcnuggets and I told them I need ranch, buffalo and bar-b-que sauce. I get to the window look in the bag and I have one of each. Really?! I have sixty nuggets and they give me three sauces? How is that supposed to work?
     Sixty nuggets is obviously going to feed more than one person. And I have this thing where I think everyone should have their own dipping sauces so they don't share germs. I mean, cold and flu season is coming and if your dipping your nuggets into someone else's sauce watch out.
     I hate having to say, "I need five more of each sauce," and having them act like they are sacrificing their first born. I understand that corporations are always looking for ways to raise the bottom line, but seriously? I resent having to beg for what should come with your nuggets in the first place.
     It's like dealing with the friend or relative who always disappears to the restroom at a restaurant when the bill shows up. Cheap, Cheap, Cheap. It's uncomfortable and embarrassing.
     Get with it McDonald's and don't make us beg for our sauce. That is all.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

The Start of a New Season

    Today is a great day. Not only did school start but I lived through another long, HOT summer. I know, I know, September can still be hot, but it has the promise of cooler days. I always feel if I can make it to the ember months, I'm good to go until late next spring. I don't know why I have such an aversion to heat maybe it's that I love layering clothes, maybe it's because I was pregnant through so many LONG, HOT summers that I now can't enjoy them. Perhaps, I just love autumn so much more with its beautiful fall colors and the beginning of the holiday season.
     What ever it is I am hap, hap, happy today. I hope you are too.