Monday, January 28, 2008
Friday, January 25, 2008
Baking Bites has some recipes for Girl Scout cookie copycats. I know that $4 a box is a little steep, but consider buying a box and then making her recipes when your cookies run out. By the way, all Girl Scout cookies are now Trans Fat Free. (Can you tell my daughter is a Girl Scout?)
TV Guide has daily updates and profiles on the Lost characters, to prep you for the season premiere next Thursday.
TV BigShot is a very silly pastime of mine. I have had a TV Network all year and I get to spend pretend money and make money when my shows do well in the ratings. My current rank is 747th out of 30,378 networks, so I'm not doing too horribly!
Freebies 4 Mom has excellent freebies, every day of the week.
I guess that's all for tonight, the family wants me to come cuddle!
Wednesday, January 23, 2008
I won't be watching the SAG awards. I refuse to pay homage to overpaid stars giving themselves pats on the back WITH the blessing of the WGA. If they can't write my TV shows (LOST) then I won't be watching their little love-fest.
Washington state governor race: Last night I had the opportunity to hear Dino Rossi, the Republican candidate for governor. I am very impressed by his platform and will definitely be putting the word out in various ways to make sure he actually gets to keep the governorship this time.
Girl Scout Cookies--It's cookie sale time. Part of why I'm so busy right now is because I'm ferrying Grace the cookie seller extraordinaire around from place to place so she can look cute and sell many boxes just for that reason.
Anyway, I am reading up a storm and trying to get all of my ducks in a row for women's retreat sign-ups, which start this Sunday. If I can keep all of the balls in the air that I have up right now, it will be a miracle (is this paragraph filled with enough cliches?)
Wednesday, January 16, 2008
Extremely interesting class action suit for anyone who has purchased a diamond in the past 14 years at Punny --I hope this doesn't turn out to be a hoax! I checked it out at Snopes and I don't see anything, and it's posted all over the web at different consumer sites. So my best guess is that it's legit. Let me know if you find out anything different.
How to Treat your Valentine from Families Northwest . Really excellent advice here! I especially liked the lists at the bottom of the 10 things women find romantic and the 5 things men find romantic. The men's list is only 5 due to this disclaimer "This is the edited list for men of non-sexual entries. The actual number one submission for most romantic from the guys involved some kind of sexual encounter initiated by their wives. I should have known. Nearly every man also mentioned food in some way.)"
That's all for today!
Sunday, January 13, 2008
I had the most interesting conversation yesterday with some women while watching the Seahawks (sob) game. I am right in the middle of reading Animal, Vegetable, Miracle which I can say without exaggerating is changing my life. We were already on the bandwagon with eating more local foods, more vegetables, but this book is solidifying and giving me reasons to do what we're doing.
Back to In Defense of Food --the main thing I came away with is the astounding history of food lobbying and legislation in the US, as well as the increasing dependence on soy and corn for things other than strictly soy or corn as food.
Read it--you'll be glad you did.
Friday, January 11, 2008
1. Write two wish lists of five items each--one material wish list, and one spiritual.
2. Tag 5 people to complete this as well, and comment in their blogs to let them know
Material Wish List
1. A house with property so that I can have a big garden and raise some chickens.
2. Someone to clean my house once a week--the icky jobs like mopping and deep cleaning the bathrooms
3. Any of the 500+ items on my Amazon Wish List
4. A 2008 Toyota Hilander Hybrid (a girl's gotta dream, right?)
5. A laptop of my very own
Spiritual Wish List
1. A bright and cheery spirit at 5:30 am that allows me to get up and complete my devotion and prayer time without falling asleep
2. A group of friends to meet with and pray weekly about our deeper needs
3. An attitude of prayer about everything throughout my day
4. Family devotion time
5.To finish what I start when it comes to devotional/study materials. I'm getting ready to start Becoming the Woman God Wants Me to Be...and I want to finish it!
Off to tag:
Flip Flop Mom
Our farmer is known as Farmer Susie. She has a farm we first joined last May, and all last summer/fall we picked up our weekly bag of veggies at the Farmer's Market. We were introduced to the joys of so many different greens and different vegetables that we either hadn't tried, hadn't eaten in a long time, or would just never have thought to purchase and experiment with.
It's the best way for us to get local, organic (although not certified, but who really cares) vegetables. The tomatoes were heavenly, Farmer Susie makes delectable garlic basil salad dressing, and I discovered something new--garlic scapes!
I'm a true garlic scape lover, and this year I will make as much garlic scape pesto as I can before they are out of season. I still have a little bit hoarded in the freezer for February or March when I am dying for something summer-fresh.
It has been an incredible experience for us, and my children are being quite adventurous. My son will eat just about anything if I put goat cheese in or on it, and my daughter adores anything made with fresh tomatoes.
To find a CSA near you, check out http://www.localharvest.org/
Wednesday, January 09, 2008
Tuesday, January 08, 2008
Monday, January 07, 2008
Here's my first menu plan I've posted online. My goal was to plan my week's menus each Sunday so that I can have them ready for the week:
Monday: Uptown Down Home Chili (Rachael Ray 365) and cornbread
Tuesday: Parmesan Chicken
Wednesday: Beer Braised Pork Chops
Thursday: Roast Sticky Chicken
Friday: Homemade sausage pizza
Sunday, January 06, 2008
The winner will receive a brand new Hamilton Beach 4.5-qt. Eclectrics Stand Mixer, Pineapple Yellow!!
About the mixer:
From Hamilton Beach’s “Eclectrics” line, this all-metal stand mixer comes with a host of accessories - a Flat Beater for cakes and cookies, a Dough Hook for bread and a Wire Whisk for whipped cream or pudding. The 4.5-qt. stainless steel bowl comes with a Pouring Shield that helps prevent splattering while in operation. The pouring shield has a built-in chute for adding ingredients. Powered by 400 watts, the stand mixer has a two-way mixing action to ensure all ingredients are incorporated into the mix. The quick-release, tilt-up head assists when removing the bowl. 9 x 14 x 14-in. When you’re ready for a kitchen re-do, don’t call in the carpenters! Instead, “counterscape” your kitchen with Hamilton Beach’s retro-designed, affordably priced electrics in happy, sun-saturated colors. Their “Eclectrics” line includes updates to those classic appliances from the 1950s. All of their “Eclectrics” are available in six colors: Apple Green, Moroccan Red, Pineapple Yellow, Intrigue Blue, Sugar White and Licorice Black.
Friday, January 04, 2008
1. Use each week's CSA vegetables creatively before the next week's veggies arrive--We had last week off due to Christmas, so I did have an opportunity to use some things. This week I have made a chicken pot pie using a bag of the stir fry veggies. Today I am making pork roast in the crock pot with parsnips, onions, and carrots that were getting on the verge of being bad. I pick up a new batch of veggies today, and although I haven't used up every single thing from the last time, I made a bigger dent than usual.
2. Check into a good source for a turkey for next Thanksgiving--I know, it seems a bit early to be thinking about this, but I realized that if I don't contact a farmer before he buys his chicks this spring, I might be out of luck. I found someone in the state that comes highly recommended, but I want to see if I can find someone a little closer.
3. Cook one new recipe each week--Today's pork pot roast comes from this month's issue of Cook's Country magazine. I had debated giving up this magazine subscription in order to be more frugal, but I realize that I cook from it tons more than Taste of Home, so I gave that one up instead.
4. Rely less on ready-made items--I must say this is going to be tougher on the kids than on me. The kids love chips, cup of noodles, chicken nuggets, etc. in their lunches. I am going to have to be more creative with lunches, which is going to take a lot more effort and some ear plugs to deal with the whining. Right now, we're still using up things we have. But on this front, I did make a loaf of bread this week, and I plan to make another loaf tomorrow. I have made yogurt twice, and everyone is eating it as fast as I can make it!
5. Less waste--We have been turning off the computers at night, which is something we haven't done in the past. I am making the kids use the 5 minute timer in the shower, which should also really help. I am trying to use things up before buying new.
6. Plan and stick to a budget--I did this month's budget and paid the bills. Even was able to budget for wrestling shoes and the wrestling fee.
So, that's this week. I am currently working on my RT reviews for January, due on Monday. I have seven books finished and ready to review, and one book I'm about halfway finished with. The remainder of today needs to be working on writing, and then reading.
Wednesday, January 02, 2008
We cracked open the 3rd season DVD set and have now been obsessively watching last season's episodes. We cannot seem to stop ourselves. We watched all day yesterday, and even after the kids went to bed and it was fairly late, LeeRoy said, "we can squeeze one more in today." Then right before I turned out the light last night he said, "there will be no Lost watching tomorrow while I am at work."
I cannot remember another time in my life when I was this into a television show. I am ready to go down to Hollywood and beg the Lost writers to go back to work. I think the fans would pool together and pay them what they're worth!
Tuesday, January 01, 2008
177. The Autobiography of Santa Claus by Jeff Guinn C+
178. The Note by Angela Hunt B-
179. Solomon vs. Lord by Paul Levine B
180. In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan B+
181. The Wedding Machine by Beth Webb Hart B-
182. A Matter of Wife and Death by Cindy Scanell and Ginger Kolbaba C+
183. Leaving November by Deborah Raney B
184. The Perfect Life by Robin Lee Hatcher B-
185. When Zeffie Got a Clue by Peggy Darty B
186. Only Uni by Camy Tang B
19. The Darkest Evening of the Year by Dean Koontz C+
20. Anne of Green Gables by LM Montbomery A
My favorite book of the year was definitely The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. Other favorites were Chasing Fireflies by Charles Martin, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by JK Rowling, and The Healing Stones by Nancy Rue and Stephen Arterburn.
My least favorite of the year was Chasing Destiny by Eric Jerome Dickey (a book group read)
This year I started a book club at my church which is small but has a very dedicated group of attendees and readers, some of which I never see at any other events. I regularly participate in group reads from one online book group as well. I think that being able to choose my own books to review has made my reading enjoyment higher this year than in past years, because I am able to pretty much weed out anything I think I won't care for.
My goal for this coming year is to cut down on my RT review books so I have more time to read my tbr shelves and books from the library--more books for fun, fewer for review. I am heading toward burnout and I don't want to be at that point.
I would love to read 200 books in 2008...I was frustrated by my lack of reading time and commitment this year. But after everything that happened this year in general, my personal life was in an upheaval which really cut into my reading time. Summer definitely remains my most productive reading time, due to the lying-in the sun-watching-the-kids-swim factor.
January: 15 books, 3 audio books
February: 14 books 1 audio book
March: 16 books, 2 audio books
April 17 books, 2 audio books
May: 18 books 1 audio
June: 13 books 1 audio
July: 26 books, 1 audio
August: 13 books, 0 audio
September: 13 books, 1 audio
October: 13 books, 2 audio books
November: 15 books, 2 audio books
December: 11 books, 2 audio books