Monday, January 31, 2011

Wow, I had a productive and creative day!! Otherwise known as...I make pretties!

This is what happens when I wake up at 5am! I get productive. As previously promised, here are pictures of the crafts that I worked on today.   Like I mentioned before, we pulled out my husband's sewing machine and I love my beading stuff.


I decided to make an afghan for the yet to be born sister of the little girl I watched, and I couldn't NOT make her something too so I made her dolly a blanket! I had this allllmost done for awhile and finished it today. I accidentally pulled my yarn and it 'jumped' into my tea this morning. I rinsed it out and continued. I shall not be deterred!!
Next...My friend turned me onto TipNuts, which is sending me somewhat regular emails with awesome recipes and free patterns. It has really helped get my creative juices flowing.  I first made this delicious apple cake recipe from the first email I got.  Here is the link for the cake recipe. The second e-mail had a section on making stuffies, so I made....
Mr. Frog.  He looks a little cockeyed in this picture so I'll try to get a better one later. I filled him with lentils, but didn't fill him enough. I also apparently can't use a sewing machine to do anything but straight lines, so Mr. Frog isn't as umm...full as he would be. He is a skinny frog...a skinny red frog made out of my husband's old t-shirt. Here is the link to Mr. Frog's pattern!  You can get a better idea of what he is umm...supposed to look like from there.

I used the sleeves from the t-shirt below to try to make a turtle outline. I ended up handstitching it since my machine was trying to make turtle soup out of the poor fellow. Picture?


Next, somehow I came across a video of Martha Stewart's crafter turning a t-shirt into a reusable grocery bag! Ingenious! I picked up a 2 dollar t-shirt from Michaels today and turned it into this
Of course the first thing I did was put my kitty in it. He lovvvves bags. Most cats would flip out, maybe want out. Newton? Nahhh...he curled up into it and wouldn't get out.  I had to take him out of it before he decided it was his new bed!  Proof that this bag can take some weight as well!  Here are some direction on making your own bag? The only change I made was that since I couldn't find markers, I used chalk to mark out the neck.  I also double stitched the bottom to make sure it was strong.


Last but not least (yeah, I did a lot today) I picked up the hoops that I needed to make some simple chainlink earrings. The origional design had some beading, but I took that out as it was driving me crazy trying to hold all the loops.  The next time I make them, and have the correct bead size, I can't wait to make some nifty additions.  These are beautiful and sleek earrings.  They were also pretty cheap to make.  Maybe I should set up an Etsy shop with all this stuff that I'm making...

Chain link earrings get along well with my snuggie!  Here is a picture with Mr. Frog

Interested in anything you've seen, and perhaps interested in funding my adventures? E-mail me!

Blog Hop linky link

Over at 21stcenturyhousewife.com she has a blog hop going on. I'm always up for linking apparently like minded cooking lovers, and thought this would be a great opportunity. I'll try to find/bring you more in the future.



On another note, yes I am up before 6am, I woke up at 5 with the hubby. Actually my husband has to work 12 hours today to make up for only working two hours during the snow storm. We didn't have electricity for 25 (I counted the hours!) hours, and rather than leave me alone in a cold cold house, he came home early and took me to the mall. I only just dug my car out last night so that I could go to the chiropractors today. I apologize for being lazy in any life updates, and turning this blog into pictures of food and kitties but sadly between the food, the kitties and the hubby my life isn't terribly interesting.
I've been feeling creatively lately, and after pulling out my hubby's sewing machine yesterday and mending two pairs of his pants and my coat, I'm ready to start sewing. On a slightly off topic tangent--why is it that a man that makes a perfectly respectable salary should wear 15 year old holey (NOT HOLY) pants in public? WHY?! He even admits that when he wears holy sweats and tie dye tees that he has been treated badly in the past. Do I want him to dress nicely for me, or for him? I totally believe that if you wear nice clothing that is comfortable and looks good on you that you feel better about yourself. I wonder what impact his clothing play on his ideas of self worth and self esteem. My husband has no problems with intellectual self esteem as he is ridiculously smart and knows it, but I don't think he is terribly comfortable with how he looks.
I have a couple of projects that I need to finish this week before finally heading out to visit friends in WV. I am still not getting my mail, I really need to call USPS, and while I can pay all of my bills online, it would be nice to see a car loan statement once every 5 years.
This weekend I rearranged our kitchen area and some of our bedroom. I get bored quickly and always like moving around my furniture. What about you? When I was a kid I had the luxury of a huge bedroom and I would always rearrange it.

Thats about it! My friend shared this website-- www.tipnut.com with me and so far I LOVE it. It has lots of link to free patterns and sewing and cooking ideas.

Upcoming post ideas?
Delicious Apple Cake recipe
Lunches for the hubby
Housewifely duties
printing coupons--do you?
vitamix, my new love...

Current Projects:
Baby blanket
stuffed frog
learning how to read patters to make other stuff....


Friday, January 28, 2011

genetic mouthwash

I struggle with this updating my blog thing. I have nothing witty to say, and hate to admit how much time my ass spent firmly implanted on the couch today...and lately in general.  I'm lazy, and I really need to start doing something about it.  I'm also once again frustrated about pain.  No, not my back this time--some ibuprofen went a lot way in helping to reduce the inflammation that was causing a lot of the pain.  It is my tooth. My tooth has been hurting on and off for a couple of weeks now that I think about it, but now it is getting really annoying.  I think that I may have broken it.  I can deal with the pain, but the uncertainty is killing me.  See...my family has this dental problem. It doesn't matter how much we brush our teeth, or floss; the little buggers break/chip/get cavities and fall out.  All of my aunts (and mom) have fake teeth because they've all fallen out, or just needed to be taken out.  My brother and biological father have dental issues.  You can see where this is going, right?  My teeth were fantastic until I went to college, and all of the sudden started getting cavities, no matter what I did.
My dental hygenist told me that every time you get someone else's mouth bacteria in yours, you get all of their predisposition to cavities and the such. I think I gave my husband a couple of cavities, in his pre-Eileen no cavity mouth.  Sorry honey. I've got a ton of cavities in my mouth that had none before college. I brush my teeth and floss now...something that was sadly lacking in my youth, but nothing seems to help and now they are breaking? I am going to drink a big glass of milk, take a calcium supplement and brush/floss and swish with mouthwash.  Sigh....

Monday, January 24, 2011

Back pain and gym visits

I am sitting here crying right now out of frustration.  For the last couple of weeks my back has hurt, a lot and it seems to be getting worse, not better.  My back has hurt for years. It took 3 different doctors and a excruciatingly painful trip to the ER after I passed out before doctors took me seriously enough to order an MRI.  It turns out I have a badly herniated disc, and the others around it aren't in much better condition.  I can't pinpoint the one event that herniated the disc, but I can't remember a time in my life where my back didn't hurt if I stood for awhile, or tried laying flat on my back.
Let me explain herniated disc pain to you if you don't know. A sprain has localized pain, you can pinpoint the area where it comes from.  This pain is completely different. Yeah, occasionally it is a stabbing pain but generally it is this awful radiating pain through my buttock down one of my legs, sometimes both.  Where ever the pain goes, I feel weak, like I can't move that leg. It spreads across my entire lower back and the upper part of my butt.  If anyone touches/presses on it, I will scream...in agony.  It was getting better after months of three time a week visits with my trainer and once a week adjustments with my chiro but now I feel like I'm back to square one, like all of that work was for nothing.
I really want to have a baby. I want to have a baby so much it hurts, but I'm terrified of getting pregnant and the pain being so bad that I will be literally bed ridden.  I'm also worried about having to take medication that I wouldn't be able to continue when pregnant.  I couldn't work now if I wanted to since I can't stand for long periods of time (anything more than 5 minutes), can't lift much, hell I can't even sit comfortably. I'm 26 and my body is failing me.  I'm sick of being told that losing weight will help. I explained that the most excruciating pain I experienced from this was actually when I weighed 30-40lbs less than I do now, and that 40lbs heavier than this it wasn't nearly as bad. The next step after the adjustments are shots of steroids into the affected area. Oh joy, just what I want, more chemicals in my body.
I'm just frustrated and venting and...it's my blog.

I went to check out gyms today and the first one was huge. It is the biggest gym, by far that I had ever been to.  Remember on Dodgeball, the gym that Ben Stiller's character worked at? Globoflex or something like that--it reminded me of that. It had beautiful amenities with a huge pool, locker room, salon, cafe etc. I hated how this over cologned man who was giving me the tour talked and walked too fast as he was trying to sell me the place. It wasn't terribly convincing that he even liked the place himself.  I would be a number in a place where I could only find a parking spot during off peak time (I went before 11am and the lot was already packed).
The next gym that I went to was a small women's gym. I liked that it was women only and offered a bunch of classes with the membership. I didn't like that it didn't have TV to watch during cardio time, but their machines, while not plentiful were great makes (cybex).
Both gyms would require a significant financial obligation.  The huge gym would be around 80 dollars a month, which blew my mind. I don't think I could use it enough to justify spending that much, just to take water aerobics.  The second gym required either a long term contract, or a more pricey short time contract.  Both are a significant distance from my house too...no gym around the corner.  If I choose one of these gyms I want to know that I will use it.  My husband and I once signed up for a gym membership at a huge gym and we never went. I didn't feel welcome, just a nameless face in the masses of people that were skinnier, healthier and much more tan than I.  I don't get that feeling from the smaller gym, but there are tradeoffs.  I'm going to keep investigating...
What is important in YOUR gym search?

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Warm Spiced Quinoa with Golden Raisins and Almonds

 Here is another healthy recipe!

I found this recipe on one of my favorite blogs -- www.greenlitebites.com.  Roni has been a great inspiration to me, since I discovered her after a CNN article I saw online.  Since I was missing some of the ingredients, I made some changes. It is in the spirit of many of Roni’s recipes to make some changes, and I actually learned a lot about baking/cooking improvisations from her website.  
Here’s the recipe
  • 1/2 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp allspice
  • Pinch of kosher salt
  • 1 small granny smith apple, cubed
  • 1/2 oz almonds chopped (14g)
  • Assembled Ingredients and Finished product
  • 1/2 oz golden raisins (14g)

If you look at Roni’s recipe, she uses red quinoa, a pear, and regular raisins. I love golden raisins and was excited to have an opportunity to use them!

Assembling:

Mix the quinoa, water, spices and salt in a small saucepan.  Bring to a boil, turn down to simmer and cover.  Cook until all water evaporates (I left mine for 12 minutes).  Do NOT touch it. In the past I’ve been impatient and it gets sticky (not good).  
While the quinoa is cooking, cube the apple and chop the nuts.  When the quinoa is done, toss in the cubed apple, chopped nuts and raisins.  Consume...enjoy...pass on.  
Up close picture
Umm...I ate it all

Friday, January 21, 2011

Best Chicken Sandwich--adopted from Coastal Flats


I love to cook, and eat out.  Eating out however isn’t always (or usually ever!) the healthiest choices because of all of the additives that you don’t know about. My solution? Make it at home! So I’ve started replicated restaurant recipes at home.  This chicken sandwich has become a family favorite.
Description:
A moist chicken sandwich with havarti cheese and sliced bell peppers on thick slices of fresh grilled sourdough bread.  The original sandwich had mayo, but we didn’t add it this time.  

How do I make this sandwich?


Ingredients:
2 chicken breasts either sliced or pounded thin. Basically, you need enough chicken breast, cooked, to fit on your bread.  I panfry it with a little olive oil.  
1 sliced bell pepper
Havarti cheese once again, enough to cover 2 slices of bread
4 thick slices of fresh bread You can use some fresh Italian Bread or we found that rounds of sourdough are amazing with the havarti
BUTTER!

How to assemble

Cook chicken, thick slice your bread and grill it with some butter in a pan--only on the outsides.  Put the cheese on the bread almost immediately so that he can melt. Since we only toast the outside, the sandwich comes together and stays in the bread.  
After the bread and chicken are grilled, put the chicken on the bread, top with peppers and toss on that piece with the nice melty cheese.
Note: We don’t always let the cheese melt all of the way, but if you just left the sandwich for a couple of seconds before snarfing it down, and snarf you will, it will melt together.  
You can add fresh spinach, mayo anything you want.

Finished Product! I took a bite before I remembered to take a picture.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Projects

I have some fun projects going on that I wanted to post some pictures of.
The first is a necklace (lariat) and earrings that I made. My friend want to buy them from me, and offered to before I even finished them!!



The next is the baby blanket that I've been working on.  For all the haters--I ONLY made it pink because it was the only color they had other than white.  I refuse to saddle any poor new parent with a white blanket and expect it not to be disgusting. 


The crochet hook on top is 6 inches long.  It is probably 2.5 feet wide square now! This is the first blanket I've ever made.  I am sorta working on a hat, but since I was a complete experiment I'm not sure I want to show it off lol.  I have food pictures that I will do another post on.

What crafty stuff have you done lately???

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Amazing cupcakes and rant....

warning: this isn't the happiest post...but I needed to rant. 


Maybe it is PMS, or maybe it was boredom but I made yellow cupcakes with chocolate frosting today.  From scratch. Double boiler to melt the chocolate and all. What took the longest was letting my eggs and such get to room temperature.  The cupcakes were/are so good. So good in fact, that I will be sending the rest to work with my husband to work tomorrow.  





My back has been killing me this last week. I knew it would happen again, but I was so psyched that it stopped hurting after I had my tonsils taken out (something about narcotics and sleeping for 10 days) but after yoga the other day, the stretching and such really 'woke' up and pissed off my lower back.  When it began hurting, before I knew I had a herniated disc, it would hurt on the right side.  Now, the pain has mostly moved to the left. It is this odd feeling too, aside from the pain it is this incredible weakness in your trunk.  There are days where I think that my entire lower half is going to collapse, and just cease to work.  I am thankful daily for the ability to move at all, especially move without pain.  I just recovered from one surgery and I damn well don't want to have another, but I do wonder frequently if surgery would help this problem.  


I've been told my entire life that losing weight will fix my life.  I'll be happier when I'm skinnier, I won't get headaches, PMS, cramps, trouble getting pregnant, back pain, or attacks from gremlins if I lose weight. Well ya know what? I'm not happy TRYING to lose weight.  Why is it about the weight? Why? I was a hell of a lot healthy 5-10 pounds heavier when I was working out with a trainer 3x week, going to the chiropractor, and muscular as hell.  The ONLY reason I've lost weight, and sustained that lost weight since having surgery is because my muscles are atrophying from lack of use!  I want to live a healthy life.  Yeah, I made cupcakes today, and YES I used two sticks of REAL butter in them, but I'm not planning on eating all 12 of them! I could walk more, eat more vegetables, drink more water, and eat less but don't we ALL have things that we wish we did, and didn't do well enough?  I'm done worrying about my weight.  Screw it, I'm going to love me, for me. I've got a lot to offer--my husband certainly thinks so, and I AM happy.  If the end of the world comes, I'll be the last to starve mwhahahah watch out skinny people--evolution is on my side now!


To clarify (cause my husband asked) I am NOT going to turn into a gluttonous fool, but rather that I am sick of fixating on a number on a scale. I am sick of beating myself up for not being good enough.  I will strive daily to be my best, but when I fail it is okay.  


Cupcake recipe:

YellowCupcakes:
1 1/2 cups (195 grams) all purposeflour
1 cup (200 grams) granulated whitesugar
1 1/2 teaspoonsbaking powder
1/2 cup (113 grams) unsaltedbutter, room temperature (cut into pieces)
1 large egg, room temperature
2 large egg yolks, room temperature
1 1/2 teaspoons purevanillaextract
1/2 cup (120 ml) sour cream or whole plain yogurt, room temperature
Chocolate Fudge Frosting:
4 ounces (120 grams) unsweetened chocolate, coarsely chopped
2/3 cup (150 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/3 cups (160 grams)confectioners(powdered or icing) sugar, sifted
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Garnish:(optional)
Colored Sprinkles or Shaved Chocolate



YellowCupcakes:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) and lightly butter or line 12 muffin cups with paper liners.
In the bowl of your electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, beat to combine theflour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add the butter, egg, egg yolks, vanilla extract, and sour cream. Beat the wet and dry ingredients together at medium speed until the batter is smooth and satiny, about 30 seconds. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. If necessary, stir the batter with arubberspatulauntil the flour is fully incorporated.
Evenly fill the muffin cups with the batter and bake for about 20-25 minutes or until pale gold and a toothpick inserted into a cupcake comes out clean. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Once the cupcakes have completely cooled, frost with icing. You can either spread the frosting on the cupcakes with a small spatula or, if piping, use a large Wilton 1M open or closed star tip to make lovely swirls. These cupcakes are best the day they are made, although they will keep for a few days at room temperature.
ChocolateFrosting: Melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl placed over a saucepan of simmering water. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.
In the bowl of your electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, beat the butter until smooth and creamy (about 1 minute). Add the sugar and beat until it is light and fluffy (about 2 minutes). Beat in the vanilla extract. Add the chocolate and beat on low speed until incorporated. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until frosting is smooth and glossy (about 2 -3 minutes).
Makes 12 cupcakes


Read more:http://www.joyofbaking.com/YellowCupcakes.html#ixzz1BRiilczb

Read more:http://www.joyofbaking.com/YellowCupcakes.html#ixzz1BRieWriQ

Sunday, January 16, 2011

What am I eating tonight? Low guilt Alfredo with pasta and left over meatballs...

I say low guilt since this still has something like 4 times as many calories as tomato sauce, but alas, it is yummy.  The first time I made it, it was a little grainy from the parmasan cheese, but I'm not entirely sure I followed the recipe perfectly (i.e. forgot to take it off the heat).  This time it seems to be smoother. The smell is mouthwatering!!


I found the recipe on this awesome blog:

:http://www.ourbestbites.com/2008/08/guiltless-alfredo-sauce.html

I will put the recipe with my comments after:
Nutritional Information: around 100 calories per 1/4 cup.

Guiltless Alfredo Sauce
2 C low-fat milk 
1/3 C (3 oz) low fat cream cheese
2 T flour
1 t salt
1 T butter
3 garlic cloves
1 C grated Parmesan cheese


Toss the milk, cream cheese, flour, and salt in a blender.


Process until smooth and set aside.

In a non-stick sauce pan, melt butter on med-high heat and add garlic. Stand above the pan (but not close enough to scald your face) and inhale. Ahhh...butter and garlic. Okay, now get cooking again. Let the garlic saute for about 30 seconds, you don't want to burn it. It should be nice and bubbly like this:


Then add milk mixture to the pan. Stir constantly for about 3 or 4 minutes or until it just comes to a simmer. Keep stirring and let it cook for a few minutes more. It should be much thicker now.


When it's nice and thickened remove the pan from the heat. Add the cheese, stir it up and then cover immediately. Let stand for at least 10 minutes before using. It will continue to thicken upon standing. Also, if you have leftovers in the fridge, the sauce will thicken almost into a solid. Just re-heat and add a little milk and it will be back to normal again.




My comments:
The first time I made this, I didn't use a big enough skillet, so this time I pulled out my super big and deep one.  It was much easier this time, and I think that it will be much smoother as a result.  
I think this recipe is a little salty, and could use some pepper and other spices.  The next time I make this, I won't add the extra salt, and will add pepper and some other spices. 


Does anyone else follow this website? They just came out with a cookbook.  I thought most of their recipes were for sweets and candy, but they did a post on healthy options that they posted and this was one of the featured posts.  I really enjoy it, and hope to make some more of their recipes in the future.  






All photos in this post are owned by the blog
www.ourbestbites.com

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Yoga and the Elusive Missing Poptarts!

I recently had my first yoga class and really enjoyed it.  I was getting a little tired and frustrated half way through when I was the only person she correctly, but then I realized two important things.  First, I’m the only one in the class that had never had a formal yoga class before, so I had never been corrected before and second, I’m paying for her to correct me!  
After all the lunges and stretching my gluts and toosh are a bit sore, but I love it.  I am more sore from the class than I was after an hour of circuit training, but instead of feeling exhausted and drained, I was so incredibly relaxed and couldn’t keep a smile off of my face!  I’m really excited to go back next week for another hour, and see how many more poses we’ll learn.  She taught us quite a bit, which makes me more like dance than a yoga class.  Having the teacher there to tell you when, where and how to move makes it so much easier than attempting to do downward facing dog while holding a book open with a cat twining between your legs!  

Onto an ADD topic change--
Have I mentioned on here that since I’ve moved I haven’t gotten any mail? Well, my ENT sent me forms, but not a single piece of my mail has been forwarded from WV.  On top of that, I had a package sent from England that I have still not received.  I checked out to USPS website and for some reason either it, or I chose to have mail forwarding start on December 31, instead of the 1st, so hopefully this means I will get mail soon.  Not only is it ridiculously annoying, but I’m constantly worried that there is something waiting in my mailbox back in WV that is important.  While we gave our friend the key, they were gone for 3 weeks during the holidays and were not able to check it.  All credit card bills seem to be paid up, and my car payment isn’t due for another week so I think we might be good, except that I have always paid my car payment from an account in WV that is now empty, and don’t have a bill. Crap...time to dig through old papers. I know that I horded past statements.  Maybe my husband shouldn’t be putting me in charge of family finances.  
Who does your family finances? Obviously if you aren’t married it should be you!

I am trying this amazon associate thing. I’m not entirely sure what the purpose is, or what I get out of it, but Amazon has been pretty good to me over the years, and I generally put a million links to their stuff in facebook posts and emails already so I am already a walking advertisement.  

People--eating a bagel for breakfast, just a big bagel with cream cheese--NOT filling.  I came downstairs with the hubby this morning, as I generally do when he gets up for work, and made us both bagels (since we had recently had a peapod delivery) and schmeared a little schmear of low fat cream cheese on them for us, and I’m starving now.  No wonder my hubs goes on break and gets junk. I need to suck it up and feed that man some protein in the mornings! I was making turkey bacon and eggs on tortillas/naan for a couple of weeks but I got bored of eggs.  Then we had some greek yogurt (which I think I’ll have for a snack when I’m done writing).  What do you have for breakfast that fills you up?

Have you used peapod before? On the surface--freaking awesome idea, they deliver your groceries.  How much lazier can you get?  My husband used it all the time when were first met, and for a working bachelor that would rather have a root canal than go food shopping, it worked out perfectly.  I, however, love to food shop. I love the smells, the tactile feeling of picking up fruits and vegetables and looking at them and all of the choices.  Having my shopping reduced to a ‘buy’ button, and having some nameless stranger pick out my produce doesn’t work for me.

I ordered this time because I had a $25 off the first order of $60/more coupon (that will expire the end of this month, and if you want the code just leave a comment).   I bought all of my overpriced (and waxed) produce from Trader Joe’s and used Peapod to deliver things that I had coupons for, copious amounts of distilled water for my husband, cat food, and baking stuff. Basically crap I don’t like shopping for anyways.  The only thing is...they forgot my poptarts.  Come on, they were on sale (and are like crack).  I love poptarts. I didn’t eat them for years because there is gelatin in the ‘frosting’ (a term I loosely use for the sugar crusted and sprinkled on top), but they are good and Peapod forgot them. I called Peapod and they took them off of my bill and offered to raincheck them but now  I’m thinking it was a sign from above that I really don’t need poptarts.  Lesson learned? Peapod is a great service, and also occasionally diet friendly by forgetting to deliver your junk food.  Off to eat some greek yogurt instead of a cherry poptart.

Friday, January 14, 2011

National Delurker Day!

(picture borrowed from www.roninoone.com)


Today is apparently National Delurker Day! I decided that it would be an excellent time to figure out who all these people from random countries like Russia, Denmark and Canada are.  All you have to do is leave a comment, and let me know that you are a real person and not a spambot!

I have no desire to blog as a semi secret journal to myself. I tried that, and it was boring. I want to blog to start a dialog with people, both new and old.  Blogging can be a transformative experience, a cathartic one, or just simply fun. it is all dependent on what you decide to write about.  I love the opportunity to touch other people with my words--it is what I always wanted when I was younger and wrote so much.

Being a 'stay at home' wife isn't as boring as I thought it would be.  Frankly, there is also so much stuff to be done, and so much crappy reality TV to watch and blankets to crochet that so far I'm not bored;).  I'll do a post about my crocheting next.   I'm psyched that my hubby is getting off of work early today and we can go out and do a 'date night!'

My husband loves to read to me. It is a wonderful and intimate (and informative) time that we can share together and learn together.  Our current book is The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes.  I only read some of it when I was a kid, and it is so much fun to try to solve the crime before the other person.  We jokingly 'deduce' all of the time now.  I downloaded it for free from Amazon for my kindle.  Here is a link (and picture!)


      

Monday, January 10, 2011

depression and new hulu discovery

Depression is a disease. A heart wrenching disease that can eat you from your soul out.  Today someone very close to me, once again, has been admitted to a mental hospital to deal with their depression.  I live by taking medicine, but what happens when your mind constantly plays tricks on you, and medicine doesn’t work? How do you live with that constantly, daily? It is with me always in the back of my mind, that fear that medicine won’t work, and that medicine that helps me live, helps me survive. I realized after college that I didn’t plan for the future, didn’t have goals because I didn’t think that I would live long enough to achieve them.  This is what depression did to me, and I hate that I can’t help, or change anything.  I hope to write more about this topic in the future, but I don't want to betray anyone's privacy in doing so, so please excuse any cryptic writing. I needed to vent bit on the topic though.

On another note,  I am supposed to go out to WV to visit friend’s on Wednesday, but we still aren’t sure of the stupid weather.  I don’t mind driving with a couple of inches of snow, but it could get a lot worse than that in the mountains, which worries me. I start my yoga class on Wednesday which is exciting. I've never taken a 'real' yoga class, but I've had some books in the past, and done it on my wii. I have always been pretty flexible, and been told that I'd be good at yoga. I am a little worried, since I haven't been able to exercise since I've had surgery but I'm sure I'll get back into the groove of things quickly.

I found another show on hulu that seems to have addictive qualities called ‘The Cape.’  The premise of the show is very Batmanesque,  with a one man crusade to better a fictional town (Palm City)after being wrongly accused of being a super villain.  After being taken in by a criminal carnival (oh yeah!) he hones his skills .  It is designed after a comic book that the main character had read to his son.  He picked the cape because he wants to send a message to his son that he is innocent.  So far there are two episodes for free on hulu--check it out, and tell me what you think.

I have a line on a potential guest blogger, so I hope to have that up soon!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

New computer!

My husband woke me up this morning by asking if I wanted to go by a new laptop. Normally I would have popped out of bed with an enthusiastic 'yeeeeeeeeey! Lets goo!' but I was tired, so I gave him a thumbs up.  We dragged around for a bit and headed up to Best Buy around 11am. We have discovered that no one goes the mall near our house until after about 2pm, so we were saved from having to park a mile away.
We headed in and I showed in the two computers that I had tried and approved when I had gone into the store before, and finally decided on the Sony Vaio E sereies.  I have to admit, I got a purple computer.  Yes, I bought a purple computer. Anyone that knows me, knows I love the color purple. I checked out the sony last night online and you had to pay extra for the colors, so I wasn't going to get anything special, but when we went in the store it was included (either purple or silver/white).
Here is a picture I stole off of the interwebs:
Lets go through my list!



  • integrated webcam/mic so that I can skype (check!)

  • easy to use keyboard (I have to test them to see if they are comfortable) (check!)

  • capable of playing a MMO (I'd like to get into Everquest again...) (Check!)

  • long lasting battery (over 3 hrs preferably) (still finding this out, but it should be fine)

  • not terribly heavy (lightest computer I've had, with a super thing screen)

  • DVD/CD player, burner (it has a blu ray player, since sony invented them and should be able to burn CDs)

  • able to watch hulu/netflix and the such, meaning it isn't too small of a screen (15'' seems to work for me) (yep!)

  • decent speakers! (I finally had to turn DOWN a show!)

  • cuteness is a plus (purple would be awesome) but NOT a necessity. I was so excited to see a purple Sony, and very sad to see that it cost $50 to get it that way.  I can live with a boring looking computer. (This thing wins on the cute scale!)
  • Friday, January 7, 2011

    Help!

    Help Blogger world--I need your opinion!  I am looking into getting a new laptop, and wanted some opinions.

    What I don't want:

    • Another Dell! Maybe there is something wrong with me, but my last two computers have been Dell's, and the mouse always skips on me, and it drives me insane.
    • crappy speakers that I have to supplement with other speakers, it seems kind of counter productive. 
    • A computer that gets too hot! I don't need burned legs, or my couch set on fire.  HP's are known apparently for getting super hot, but I seem to like them. 

    What I do want:

    • integrated webcam/mic so that I can skype
    • easy to use keyboard (I have to test them to see if they are comfortable)
    • capable of playing a MMO (I'd like to get into Everquest again...)
    • long lasting battery (over 3 hrs preferably)
    • not terribly heavy
    • DVD/CD player, burner
    • able to watch hulu/netflix and the such, meaning it isn't too small of a screen (15'' seems to work for me) 
    • decent speakers!
    • cuteness is a plus (purple would be awesome) but NOT a necessity. I was so excited to see a purple Sony, and very sad to see that it cost $50 to get it that way.  I can live with a boring looking computer.
    My husband is a computer guru, and we'll do some consumer reports shopping, and testing again at Best Buy again, but I would love to get people's opinions!  


    Thursday, January 6, 2011

    weight loss pictures


    It really hit me today when I was looking at pictures how much weight I've lost.  I did my hair and actually put on makeup tonight to go out to this amazing place in Baltimore for dinner with our friend that is visiting and my husband.  I took some pictures, b/c generally I'm vain like that, and like occasionally updating my pictures on facebook.  Below is a picture taken of my husband and I in Oregon last December, and me tonight and another picture of us from tonight. I can only claim that some of the awful picture of me is the odd angle. My face is seriously fat though.  There are other pictures from the trip as well, and I think I avoided posting them widely b/c of how uncomfortable I was with my weight.  



     December 2009
     January 2011
    January 2011

    Here is a picture of me at my lowest weight after college. I think I was around 240 here (30lbs less than now...around 70lbs less than my high)
    This was December 2007. I finally feel like I look older than this picture. Is it b/c I am, or is it the hair?

    What do you think?