Thursday, March 31, 2011

The Big To Do

This past weekend we all got together to help my parents celebrate a huge milestone - their 40th wedding anniversary.  My dad kept saying things like...I know so-and-so whose kids made a big deal out of their 40th anniversary & didn't wait until their 50th because who knows how long you're going to live?
Ok, Dad.  Subtle hint taken.  Photo shoot & family dinner party planned.  The family photo was WAY overdue.  We hadn't taken a family picture since I was 14.  I had a perm (heaven help me!).  I had big glasses (oh my!).  I had worn a very loud floral print shirt that I had made for 4H that year (forehead smack!).  Mom & I liked it.  No one else did & we'll just say that it doesn't blend well in the pics.  Someday soon I'll have to steal borrow that pic from the top of Mom's piano & scan it in here for laughs.  Believe me, you will laugh.  The perm & the flowers guarantee it!
Anyway, back to the present. Mom dictated that we all just wear something nice casual. Jeans would have to do because my dad (and frankly my husband) don't own any other kinds of pants. Denim is in! And we are grateful, amen.

When we got to the portrait studio it was overrun with babies, toddlers, & little kids.  It was a madhouse.  And I thought we were going to have a family meltdown when we were told we were going to have a 30 minute wait.  Thankfully all the children & adults, ahem, were able to behave the entire wait time.  It was amazing how fast she took the pics once we got started.  They did all sorts of groupings & shots & here are a few of the best.

The Original Five

My brother Andy & his family - wife Valerie, Whitney & Aidan

My sister Beth & her family - husband Brennan, Caleb & Madison

I think this is a good pic of Mike & I liked that she actually let me be in front of him.  They never want me to do that because I'm taller but I don't want to be hugging his neck in every single picture that we have taken.  I don't like this shot of me because my neck tendons are sticking out.  Isn't that scary looking?  Why do I do that???

The whole crew!
I know that last photo is in dire need of editing but I am completely clueless as to how to do it.  They edited all the photos that were printed for us but they didn't save the edited shots to the disc that they gave us.  Hmmm...

We headed from the portrait studio over to M&D's for a big family dinner.  It was a great time of food, fellowship, old stories, & celebrating my G-pa's birthday, too.  I love those family times best...everyone gathered around the table, no hurry to be anywhere, good food, cozy feelings, & all the wonderful conversation.  Really, are there any better family times than those spent around your parent's or grandparent's dining room table, especially when you have a kid sliding onto your lap before dessert? 
Good stuff.  Amen.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Looks Can Be Deceiving

 I know, I's looks like we have big fat flakes of snow falling down here in Indiana.
 I'm going to let you in on a little secret...
It may look like snow, but it's really just confetti.
Yep, confetti falling from heaven to celebrate the arrival of Spring!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Real vs. Digital

In the digital world, angry birds look like this guy
& they catapult themselves at pigs. 
These evil green pigs have stolen the bird's eggs
& plan to make a tasty meal out of them.
The birds cause all sorts of destruction to the
fortresses that the green pigs build.
If you are me, the birds don't always win. 
Sorry about my skill level. 
Believe me, it's not for lack of practice.
 In the real world, I'm not sure what angry birds look like. 
I do know what they do when they attack. 
It sounds like a "Thwack!!!" & it looks like this:
 Mike & I were driving Saturday afternoon. 
The car was reasonably clean.
And then the attack from the angry birds.
 We are talking stem to stern, bumper to bumper coverage.
It happened in a split second.
We were both screaming.
I counted 61 dots of bird doodie.
Can you believe that?
Thank God we weren't riding our bikes!
Be warned: there are some angry (or maybe sick?) birds out there!

Friday, March 25, 2011


I'm on day five of a pretty vicious cold.  I've had the sore throat days, the I-need-to-sneeze-every-three-minutes days, & today I started the runny nose/cough up a lung days.  It ain't pretty.

I couldn't sleep last night partly because I drank like 8 gallons of water yesterday trying to soothe myself.  Drinking 8 gallons of water does not make for a restful night.  That's all I'm going to say.  So when Mike left for work this morning I was so disgusted with my sleep issues that I didn't snuggle back into bed.  I stayed awake & read my Bible & had a decent amount of time to get ready for work (which was a good thing because I was not moving too fast, let me tell you).  I even had time to put on lipstick.  And then I was 15 minutes late because there was a train.  *sigh*  Those of you who are familiar with my town are probably chuckling as you read this. 

In my snotty sleep deprived state of mind this morning I had no inspiration as I tried to put something together to have for lunch today.  I gathered a few things up, threw them in my bag & headed out the door.  As I sat down to lunch a few minutes ago I was halfway through my repast when I realized what a weird conglomeration of food I had put together.

That empty wrapper once contained a stick of string cheese.  And then we have baby carrots, leftover peas, yogurt & homemade apple sauce (made from the recipe Alicia passed on to me; I posted it here and it is YUM-E!).  Hmmm...I guess we have veggies & fruit & dairy for protein.  Individually they all taste good but together as a meal?  A little weird.  That's how I tend to decorate the house, too.  Lots of great individual elements but when you look at the whole picture?  A little weird.  Mike has to help me with that.  Too bad he couldn't help me pack my lunch!

The truly weirdest thought I had about my lunch (no kidding, I do think this way I'm sorry to say)...with the exception of the carrots, all of this food could totally be eaten by someone who didn't have teeth.

Obviously I'm ready for the weekend.  Are you?  *grin*

Thursday, March 24, 2011

I'm Feeling Offended...

Yep, the weather today feels like a sharp slap in the face from a cold, cruel hand.  Yesterday I went running in a tank top & wore flip flops to prayer meeting.  In the mere two hours I was at church the transformation started.  At 7 p.m. there was a big tempestuous balmy breeze going on.  It was lovely & definitely felt & smelled like spring.  At 9 p.m. I was running to the car screeching because I was so miserably cold & the balmy breeze had turned into a icy gale.  My toes were quite disgruntled.

*sigh* I'm wearing a wool sweater. My space heater is cranked to high. The sky is low & gray; the icy gale hasn't let up one bit.   There is actually snow spitting around outside my window.

I know that this little weather system is just a minor setback, a temporary situation.  I am not going to let it steal my joy.  I am not going to get grumpy & rant about the cruelty of such quick, total switches in atmosphere.  Secretly I am going to rejoice that Mike won't want to turn on the air conditioner at night again for at least a week!  But I am going to struggle with worry.  Worry for Maggie Magnolia.  Right now our yard is a ten point disaster.  The flower bed has grass & wild onions growing in it.  The tree row is a muddy mess from parking our cars.  The back & side of the house still have scars from the sewer project & the unfinished portion of that project that remains to be tackled sometime very soon, Lord willing.  We have random tulips coming up in all sorts of weird places because they were displaced by the sewer dig.  We have dead flowers from last year that need to be cleaned up.  Get the picture?  Yet in the midst of all that disaster, Maggie Magnolia seems to be thriving.  Perhaps it's because she is planted in the far corner of the yard & away from all the chaos by the house. 

And just look at her!  Every branch is covered with buds.  Last year we had one solitary bloom & it came on very late in the spring.  I wasn't really hoping for much more this year.  Given my track record, I have very low expectations when it comes to plant life that depends on me for its care *grin*  Maggie is coming on with a vengeance this year & I will be heart.broken if all of her beautiful buds get zapped. 

Maybe I'll dig her up & put her in a huge pot.  I can bring her into our living room & set her up next to the pumpkin that I bought last fall that still hasn't gone bad!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

This Makes Me Chuckle

In case you can't tell what this is a picture of, let me explain.  This is a shot of our bathroom floor.  You can see the corner of the hamper, our scales, & a huge chuck of peanut butter cookie.  Just because, we are not going to be curious about why there would be a cookie crumb on the bathroom floor.  Instead, let us contemplate the irony of the fact that a cookie crumb would land right next to the scales. 
Am I the only one who thinks this is hilarious?

Now for a brain teaser...when I first started this post I entitled it "Irony" & I had a definition (an outcome of events contrary to what was, or might have been, expected) written above the picture.  The more I read about the true definition of irony, I just wasn't sure this was a proper usage of the term.  Any thoughts from you brainaics out there?

And just because I'm totally insecure & will not be able to sleep tonight because I am worried you will be thinking we are totally gross, let me explain a little more.  Our home is older & is built with a traffic pattern that allows you to walk through the house in a circle.  The bathroom has two doors & that end of the room is more like a hallway.  The facilities are at the other end.  Both doors are usually open & we walk through there from the bedroom to the kitchen quite often.  The spot where the cookie crumb was found was in this hallway like area of the bathroom.  Honestly & I promise you, we are not yucky *nervous grin*

Monday, March 21, 2011

Spring! Flowers! Warm Breezes!

First of all, let me say Happy Spring to you, one & all!  It's amazing how the warmer weather & the budding plant life can lift my spirits.  Isn't this a pretty daffodil?  One of the little guys at church handed it to me yesterday morning as we were walking in to Sunday School.  It really made my day!

I have several confessions for you today...

  • We ate at White Castle this weekend.  I finally gave in & agreed to go there when Mike asked if it was a viable option for dinner.  And the shameful thing?  I actually liked it.  A lot.  Who knew?
  • We went furniture looking/shopping this weekend.  We have been discussing this for a very long time.  Our living room desperately needs more seating.  We are looking for a smallish accent chair.  Mike also is less than enamored with the big area rug I purchased for the living room before we were married.  Now that I've had it for a couple of years I don't like it so much either.  We also are looking for a couple of dining table chairs (the padded leather ones with no arms).  Our furniture shopping may or may not have taken 5-6 hours, included 3-4 cross town trips, two drive thru stops, three stops at the same furniture store where we saw two of my past coworkers & three people we went to high school with (yes, I'm embarrassed to say we did do a little bit of ducking & hiding), & only one purchase - a new rug.  Which we won't be using until the bookcases are completely done & the mud in our tree row has dried up a bit.  Two days later I'm still exhausted *grin*
  • I got trussed up with the Holder Monitor again this morning.  The test from last week had too many 'artifacts' on it to be interpreted.  I have no idea what an 'artifact' might be but I'm guessing it is some sort of interference that covers the recording of the heart beat.  Anyway, when she was hooking me up today she asked if I had rubbed or pressed on any of the contacts the first time.  I said I hadn't & I would be sure to avoid it this time.  While I was driving back to work I realized that the seat belt went straight across the contact that is on my upper chest.  Last week while I was wearing the monitor I had to make an out of town delivery for work.  I'm thinking that was about 3 1/2 hours of direct pressure from the seat belt on that one contact.  Perhaps that is where the 'artifacts' came from?  Anyway, I'm a little peeved that I have to redo it.  But I keep reminding myself that it could be worse - at least I'm not redoing a Colonoscopy or a Barium Swallow Test.  Ugh & double ugh to those two!
  • I had totally forgotten how many Girl Scout cookies we ordered & I'm thinking that about 5 boxes will get delivered to our house this week.  This is supremely bad news for my self control.
  • I would really like to leave work this very minute, drive home, grab a big blanket, run out to the yard, & lay in the sunshine until the sun sets. 
I hope you all are having a happy Monday & a great start to Spring 2011!

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Don't look too close at my weird scary toes but I wanted to announce the first pedicure of the season!  I'm a do-it-yourself kind of girl so it isn't too fabulous of a job & my feet are functional (definitely not pretty!) but I do love to paint my toenails.  This is a first time use of this color, too.  It's a little edgy for me - Silver Screen is its name.  I think I'm liking it!
After the 10 miler this weekend it will probably be destroyed but that's ok.
Bring on the flip flops!
*Yes, it took an inordinate amount of courage to publish a pic of my foot.  It would embarrass me further to have to confess how many pics I took before I found one I could bear to use :-)

Friday, March 18, 2011

Fashion Friday

Recently I found a fabulous coupon for the Gap on line.  If you spent $50 you got $25 off.  I'm a sucker for that kind of deal so I signed Mike & myself both up.  We received text messages on our phones that had a code we had to show to the cashier.  Pretty handy.  And Mike let me use his - double whammy!
I'm a fan of the Gap because a lot of their clothes have really simple, clean lines.  And they have a lot of solid color shirts/sweaters/blouses.  I'm a sucker for solids.  And they have lots of T's.  I'm a sucker for T's.  I'm not really up to date with what's fashionable but after a long search I did find a shirt & sweater combo.
  I love this shirt because the material is light & flowy.  The cut of the shirt is relaxed but not sloppy.  And the color is really hard to describe.  I loved it out in the store - it was kind of a muddy lavender.  Then I took it in the fitting room & I thought it was brown.  Weird but lovely.
 I paired it up with this sweater.  Again, it has a relaxed shape, kind of ballet inspired, but it's not sloppy looking.  It has a single hook & eye closure in the center which I really like.  The open cardigans that are popular now are pretty, but not practical for me because of how I layer a lab coat over my clothes every day.  Anyway, this sweater looked almost tan in the store but then very greenish in the fitting room.  I went back & forth & forth & back trying to decide if I liked the color.
When I put the two together, I thought they looked great.  But since they had such a strange color change property I had to ask the sales lady what she thought.  She said I had picked winners!  It seems like these earthy tones are going to be popular this season.  Who knew I'd be so stylish? *grin*
Although it was more than I usually spend on clothes I feel like I got a pretty good deal because of the coupons.  Have you scored any good deals lately?

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

There's no pinching or toe stomping going on here - I'm dressed for St. Patrick's Day! 
I've got it covered from my head to my toes!
Celtic Knot Earrings

My fabulous green Pumas aka Leprechaun Shoes.
However, I do not have any green beer, green bagels, or green ham. 
Sometimes you just gotta know where to draw the line. 
As an extra holiday bonus we are enjoying tons of sunshine & temperatures in the mid 60's!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

For me, running is hard work.  Lots of days I don't really enjoy the actual running; I enjoy the feel good high I have after the running is done.  Occasionally that feel good high gets messed up by injuries (tendinitis, shin splints, plantar fascitis, etc.).  Although I have had my run ins with those pesky injuries I have kept running because the good still significantly outweighed the bad.
There was also this nagging thing that Beth & I called "Cold Run Lung" where we would have achy chests & a naggy cough after running in the cold air.  I've always experienced that but in the past year or so it has happened even when the air isn't cold.  It was a more frequent problem & the achy feeling became more like a tightness.  The tightness would settle in while I was running, quit when I stopped, & then come & go for several hours after I was done with my run.
I didn't like it.
So I went to the doctor.  We talked it over & she gave me an inhaler to use for what she called "Exercise Induced Asthma".  I've been using it for a couple of months & I went back in for a follow up appointment last week.
The inhaler has been helping.  The tightness in my chest rarely happens now while I run.  But sometimes later it hits me again.  We discussed what it could be - gas (given my burping propensity, this could be a definite possibility), a muscle/skeletal inflammation, bronchial spasms, or a heart condition.  She listened to my heart for quite some time & said that she thought she detected a fast beat sneaking in every little bit.  This can explain the tightness, it can also cause lightheadedness or momentary weakness.  It's generally a benign condition but requires testing to confirm the diagnosis & confirm that it is harmless.

So I made another appointment to have an echo cardiogram & to be fitted with a Holter monitor.  It looked a lot like the one in the illustration above.  Basically what it does is record a 24 hour EKG.  I kept a diary of my symptoms & activities.  They will upload the monitor's data & compare it to my diary & see what my ticker is doing.  I think it was a very interesting (although uncomfortable) process.  The echo cardiogram was a super easy test.  All I had to do was lay there & listen to the technician chatter.  She was super friendly & very kind.  She also gave me a little inside info on my test by telling me that everything looked normal.
Getting the Holter installed was a little more painful than I thought it would be.  The technician had to 'exfoliate' the areas where the contacts would be attached.  I thought I was gonna be bleeding by the time she quit.  Oy!  Then I got taped up from stem to stern.  My contacts were positioned a little differently than the illustration.  Unfortunately I didn't know that one of the contacts would be high, at the base of my neck.  It peeked out of my shirt collar all day & made me feel a little self conscious.  And there were skads of wires with tons of slack that had to be taped up on me because they couldn't just hang down without removing the contacts.  I felt trussed up like a Thanksgiving turkey.
The monitor got put on yesterday morning.  The whole time I was at work it wasn't really any big deal.  I was supposed to go running with it on so that they could see what my heart was doing during exercise.  I also was not supposed to get sweaty because the moisture could cause the contacts to come off.  I wasn't sure how I was going to run without getting sweaty.  I knew I couldn't run at the gym because I sweat just going in the door (combo of heat & insecurity/self consciousness - please tell me I'm not the only insecure one).  I decided I would just run outside.  It was a cool day & kind of drizzly but I prayed that it wouldn't downpour & I hit the road.  Yeah, I still got sweaty.  By the time I got home I was more than a little worried.  I assessed the damage & concluded that only the extra wire had come untaped completely.  Everything else looked pretty good.  In my anxiety about the contacts falling off I had Mike put more tape over everything.  Then I really felt like I couldn't move.  This morning when it all got taken off I just about screamed.  We had put on A LOT of tape!  I still have red marks all over me.
Now I wait to hear what the results are.  My guess is that they will find that I am alarmingly normal & boring.  Until I hear any different I'll just keep puffing on my inhaler & trying to keep up with my training plan!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

I'm Hopeful!

Even though the mornings are still so cold I have been wearing my coat to work & scraping the frost off of my windshield, the signs of spring are popping out all over the place!

Friday morning I was able to turn the porch light off when I left for work.  That's because there was a whole lot of this in the eastern sky:

With the advent of Daylight Savings Time I will be plunged back into darkness on my way to work, but I did enjoy it the whole week I had it!

Several day earlier as I got to work, pulling into the driveway like maniac because I am running late as usual, I almost crashed into a beautiful couple of mourning doves.  These are just about my favorite birds.  They usually seem to be in pairs which makes me naively think they mate for life!  And I love the sound of their call, even if it is mournful.  Anyway, I about scared those two doves half to death (& myself as well!).  They flew up & out of the way but one of them hit the window in our lab, scaring my boss half to death.  The noise startled him but he is also a little crazy phobic about birds.  Something about a Hitchcock movie he watched when he was a kid...anyway, doves don't stay around here for the cold nasty weather.  Finding them at work is a definite sign of spring!

And then we have the indisputable sign of the crocus shooting up.  I love these little flowers.  We don't have any at our house but my parents & my sister have them.  Actually, the only thing we have growing in our flower beds right now is wild onions & grass.  Yep, I have bald spots in my lawn & grass growing in my flower beds.  Don't be like me.

What signs of spring are you seeing out & about?  It's super premature but I'd love to ditch my sweaters & sweatshirts, tights & boots to the back of my closet & pull out the tshirts, capris, & flip flops!

Saturday, March 12, 2011


This last week has been a rough one for me.  I'm not sure why.  Physically I have felt like I have been put through a wringer washer.  Ouch.
Thursday & Friday both I woke up & took my temperature to see if I should go to work or crawl back under the covers.  Rats.  No temp.  In fact, both days it was 97.3, way too low to be considered any kind of fever.
I had stomach troubles (kale hates me & I hate it back. with a vengenance).  Enough said about that.
I had a monster headache.  Migraine proportions but I just couldn't call it a migraine because it didn't have all of the normal precursors - seeing auras, fullness in my temples - little signs I know to look for.  They just weren't there.  And I wasn't sensitive to light but super sensitive to noise.  My quiet office was definitely a haven.
I felt kind of achy & nauseous but I never got sick. 
I'm a little bit afraid that it is training sickness.
The last time I trained for the Indy Mini I was sick about every 4-5 weeks.  Funny little episodes of mild stomach virus or the classic - Strep Throat.  During that time frame I was working two jobs, planning the wedding, training for the race, & working on some major house projects - a lot of pressure!  This time around I figured it would be no big deal because so much of that pressure is off.  I am just a normal 40 hour a week girl, the wedding is over & done with, the big projects in the house are pretty much done.  I thought I would be home free with the illness issue.  Now I'm not so sure.
So I sat out this morning's long run.  I'm trying not to feel like a failure or a wimp.  It's a bit discouraging but I never set out to do this thing to try to become some kind of star athlete.  I just want to finish the race.  And skipping one 9 mile training session doesn't sink my ship.
At least that is what I am telling myself.  I guess we will see!

Friday, March 11, 2011

We Took The Plunge!

Last week Mike & I took the plunge & got the new iphone 4.  It was something he had been very patiently waiting to do.  I think the iphone is fun & really cool but I know I don't need one.  Now that I have it, this is even more clear to me.  But do I love it?  Oh yes, yes I do!

I'm still trying to figure out what apps I should have.  I have Angry Birds (of course!) & a few other games.  I have a Spark People app (big shout out to Alicia for mentioning Spark People on her blog - I love their app!).  I have a couple of Bible apps & one camera app.  I'm still trolling for more!  Most of the ones I have installed are the free version but I did pay for a Facebook app so that it would actually work & allow me to upload pics.  Not that I do that often but now I have the option *grin*

So are any of you smart phone users?  Is there anything I should know or any apps that you highly recommend?  I will take any advice you can give!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

A Few Details

In another post recently I mentioned that I wanted to grow my hair out so that I can donate it.  An anonymous commenter helpfully suggested that I check out the details about hair donation since I color my hair.  Evidently each organization has different specifications about what kind of hair they will accept.

I've done a little research & I thought I would share my findings with you just in case you are considering hair donation, too.  It seems like such a simple thing to do to make someone else's life a little better.  Here's the breakdown:

Pantene Beautiful Lengths:
Donated hair must be a minimum of 8 inches long (measure hair from just above the elastic band of the ponytail to the ends).

Wavy/curly hair texture is fine—you may straighten hair to measure.

Hair should be freshly washed and completely dry, without any styling products.

Hair may be colored with vegetable dyes, rinses and semi-permanent dyes. It cannot be bleached, permanently colored or chemically treated.

Hair may not be more than 5 percent gray.

Wigs For Kids:
Make sure hair is a minimum of 12 inches. Pull curly hair straight for a more accurate measurement.

Hair must be clean and dry.

Hair cannot be permed, color-treated, or highlighted. Temporary coloring or highlights that washout are acceptable.

Locks of Love:
Hair that is colored or permed is acceptable.

Hair cut years ago is usable if it has been stored in a ponytail or braid.

Hair that has been bleached (usually this refers to highlighted hair) is not usable. If unsure, ask your stylist. We are not able to accept bleached hair due to a chemical reaction that occurs during the manufacturing process. **If the hair was bleached years ago and has completely grown out it is fine to donate.

Hair that is swept off of the floor is not usable because it is not bundled in a ponytail or braid.

Hair that is shaved off and not in a ponytail or braid is not usable. If shaving your head, first divide hair into multiple ponytails to cut off.

We cannot accept dreadlocks. Our manufacturer is not able to use them in our children’s hairpieces. We also cannot accept wigs, falls, hair extensions or synthetic hair.

Layered hair is acceptable if the longest layer is 10 inches.

Layered hair may be divided into multiple ponytails.

Curly hair may be pulled straight to measure the minimum 10 inches.

10 inches measured tip to tip is the minimum length needed for a hairpiece.

Children With Hair Loss:
Hair should be at least 8 inches in length or longer is preferred.

Hair must be clean pony-tailed and braided (this keeps the hair in one direction).

Place rubberband or pony tail holder on each end.

Non-chemically treated hair is preferred (but any hair in good condition will be accepted).

Gray hair is accepted.

Childhood Leukemia Foundation:
At least 12" in length (curly hair can be pulled straight to measure 12")

Chemically untreated from permanents or hair dye.

Do not accept gray hair (not suitable for children)

As you can see, there are several organizations that accept hair donations to make free (or mostly free) wigs for people who have lost their hair due to medical problems.  If I understood all the details correctly, Pantene Beautiful Lengths is the only program that is aimed towards helping women & the rest of the programs are more directed towards helping children.  Based on your personal reasons for donating you may want to consider that.
At this point I am thinking that my hair (if I manage to hang on & get it grown out!) will probably go to Locks of Love. 
Have any of you already gone through this process?  If so, share some of your experience - I'd love to know how long it took to grow your hair out, what organization you donated through, & your inspiration for donating your hair.  I love to hear your stories!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Another Experiment

I've taken another step into unknown territory in the produce aisle.  I grabbed a bunch of kale the other day.  I have read all sorts of buzz online about how you can make kale chips.  The process seemed very simple & to have a bad for you food replaced by a super good for you low calorie option seemed like a win-win.
The process is very simple.  Cut the tough stem out of the kale.  Break it into close to bite sized pieces, wash it, then spin it until it is really dry.  Then you toss it with a tablespoon or two of olive oil, lay it out on a baking sheet & bake at around 300-325 for 25-35 minutes until it gets good & crispy.  Take it out, sprinkle some sea salt on & let them cool.

I actually really liked the kale chips.  Mike wasn't really a fan.  They are good but I don't think it's reasonable to say that now that I've had them I'll never want another potato chip.  They have also caused me a bit of a problem *burp* so I may not *burp* be making them again anytime soon *burp*

Have you tried any new to you foods lately?

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The ABC's Of Me

Zoe over at A Giraffe in a Scarf wrote a post modeled off of this & I thought, why not?  I can do it, too!  Yes, yes, I am super original in all that I do :-)

A. Age: 33 years old.  This is my Larry Bird year (that was his number when he played for the Boston Celtics).  Somehow that makes me feel like this should be a good year; so far, it has been!

B. Bed Size: Queen. And I tend to sleep in the middle.  Good thing Mike is a cuddler *grin*

C. Chore You Dislike: I'm sure everyone would say cleaning the bathroom so that one will just be understood.  After the bathroom, I dislike washing dishes.  It is so never, never, never, never ending.

D. Dogs: We don't have one *sob*  I really want one *sob* and no matter how hard I cry *sniff* Mike won't let us have one *moan* right now *sigh* because our yard isn't fenced *sob* & I insist on a big dog like a Labradoodle *sniff*

E. Essential Start to Your Day: Gotta get up & send Mike off to work.  I can't imagine starting the day without saying goodbye to him even if it means getting up so early it makes my toenails hurt.
F. Favorite Color: Red!  Blue!  Green! I just like them ALL - except for maybe teal.

G. Gold or Silver: I have both & I like both.  Mike likes all things white gold/silver so that's what my wedding rings are.  That's about all the jewelry I wear anymore.
H. Height: 5 feet 10 inches & yeah, I know that's kind of tall for a girl.

I. Instruments You Play(ed): I play the clarinet.  I have taken lessons for the piano (no natural talent & I played the alto sax for a while because my G-pa bought me one & said, "You'll learn how to play it."  It wasn't pretty.

J. Job Title:  Certified Nuclear Pharmacy Technician.  Sounds way cooler than it is most days but it is a good job.  I get to play with radioactive drugs & wear a lab coat - not everyone gets to say that!

K. Kids: Yes, Lord willing!  Hopefully two (I'd take more but then again, I've never been pregnant yet)

L. Live: Indiana, USA

M. Mum’s Name: Mary Lee.  Does it get confusing?  Yes, especially when you do the breakdown:
G-ma: Mary Lou
Mom: Mary Lee
Me:  Mary Ann
Aunt: Mary Margaret
Cousin #1: Mary Beth
Cousin #2: Mary Dale

N. Nicknames: Yep.  Mostly Mare or MeeMee.  There were some friends in high school that called me Skippy because someone thought I looked like the character Skippy from "Family Ties".  I don't know what that was about.

O. Overnight Hospital Stays: No!  And I don't ever want anyone to leave me in the hospital overnight by myself for any reason EVER!  Creepy to the max!  No thank you to the overnight hospital stay!

P. Pet Peeves: When something I can't possibly fix doesn't work like it's supposed to - car, plumbing, internet, etc.

Q. Quote from a Movie: I got nothing for you.  I'm not a movie line quoter.

R. Righty or Lefty: Righty.

S. Siblings: One brother & one sister.  I'm the baby.  They are both great.  Love them to bits.

T. Time You Wake Up: Too Stinkin' Early.  Our alarm goes off at 4:50 a.m.  Usually we are up by 4:55 a.m.

U. Underwear: Of course, always, every day & clean ones, too.  I'm not telling you anymore *blush*

V. Veggies You Don’t Like: Brussel Sprouts.  They are AWFUL.  My mother-in-law roasts them with olive oil, salt, pepper, & garlic.  They smell like heaven.  I have often been seduced into trying them.  I hate them every time. 

W. What Makes You Run Late: My DNA.  It doesn't seem to matter how I plan ahead, I usually run late.

X. X-Rays You’ve Had: Chest xrays (several times), ankle (I had tendinitis but they wanted to make sure I didn't have an extra bone in my ankle which is apparently fairly common), & stomach (they make you swallow a barium drink; it's ghastly & I've had it done twice - YUCK!)

Y. Yummy Food You Make: I made some fairly wonderful peanut butter chip peanut butter cookies last night.  Tonight I'm going to try making Kale chips - gotta balance things out, one bad food, one good food!
Z. Zoo Animal Favorites: I love to watch Polar Bears.  And I'm a sucker for the dolphin show.
And just for bonus points I'll tell you that I had a Hot Pocket & some yogurt for lunch!

Now you know me well *grin*

Feel free to post on your blog & let me know if you did - I'll come check it out!

Monday, March 7, 2011

A Little Trade Off

Sunday morning I got up and did a little fridgie inventory. 
What I found cause me to forsake this friend:

This coffee pot was one of our best wedding gifts!  I love it!
So I got out this kitchen friend, also another wonderful wedding gift.  My fridgie inventory yielded finds like a little bit of kefir, a little bit of apple juice, a few strawberries, a few blackberries, & a few blueberries.  I threw them in the blender & hit the "pulverize" button.
While my smoothie was pulverizing, I went to the china cabinet & found this beauty. 
I've never used any of these glasses before so I pulled it out & filled it up!
A super yummy way to start my Sunday!
By the way, I have tried these smoothies with some spinach added in. 
 I don't care what anybody says, you can taste the spinach. 
And it tastes all wrong.  Just take my word for it *shudder*

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Just A Quick Question

Do you ever do something like this?

We have lots of dishes.  These dishes come in all different sizes & shapes.  I have learned the hard way, the very hard way, that our Pfaltzgraff bowls will fit quite tightly inside of our clear blue bowls.  I'm not going to admit to you how many times I have got these guys stuck together in the midst of my dish washing chaos.  When I took this particular picture, Mike was sick as a dog with the stomach flu.  I could NOT get these guys apart.  And I just felt bad needing Mike to do it.  So I left them sitting on the stove top, just like this, for days.  When Mike was feeling better one of the first things he did was notice them & peel them apart for me.  I'm happy to say that I haven't made this same mistake since.  I've made lots of other mistakes for sure, just not this one!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Warning: Super Smooshy Gushiness Ahead!

When I see this on my phone at 8:00 a.m. every work day, I know it is a message from Mike.
That 'ICE Husband' ID just makes me smile.

It's his way of checking in with me to make sure I'm having a good day.
I adore him.
And I never expected to be one of those gushy, mushy people but I guess you
never know what love will do to you *grin*

Happy Friday to you, one & all!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Getting All Organized & Stuff!

Yeah, I'm a nerd.  And I totally embrace it.
The problem is, I can get to be a messy nerd.  I have this compulsion to write things down & make lists.  It's just how my brain functions best.  However, if I'm not really diligent I end up with slips of paper everywhere - in my pockets, in my purse, in my lunch bag, in my car, by my bed, in the get the idea.
For a long time I have relied on some kind of journal, notebook, planner, etc. to try to keep myself under control.  My latest version of this is actually a three ring binder with loose leaf notebook paper in it.  I had found a whole wad of loose leaf paper when I moved to my house & unpacked a bunch of stuff that had been packed away for a long time.  So I've been trying to use it up because I have no school children in my house & because I have this thing against wasting (check this post for confirmation of my weirdness).  I've used this notebook system for quite a while but as you can see from the pics below, it's time for a change.

The notebook works really well but it's rather, er, shall we say, large?  I'm thinking something a bit more portable might be just what I'm looking for.
Also, because it is large & has pockets I can stuff lots of junk in it.  That is not a good thing for someone as organizationally challenged as I.

Do you like my homemade tabs?  Yet another effort to use up paper I found tucked away.  These little tabs are actually heart shaped post-its that don't post-it very well.  So I taped them on & used a bunch!  Do you also see that huge wad of papers stuffed in the back of the notebook?  It's like notebook muffin top - not attractive!
Here's my new brain dump catch-all!  For only $3.57 at the local Wally World I can ditch the big green monster & lighten my load.  And it's pretty!  With it's bright colored cover I immediately started thinking of spring.
Inside it has three main sections which I subdivided with some stick on tabs that came free with a Staples catalog.  I simplified some of my categories & chaged a couple others to come up with a bit of a different format.  I'm very happy with it; simple pleasures people, simple pleasures.

I know that since I have an iphone (old & not used as a phone but still lots of fun) that I should probably use to keep track of my calendar, To Do Lists, & various projects; however, I am NO GOOD at finding apps that are easy to use & are tailored to the needs I have.  If you have any suggestions of what apps would possibly work for me, please leave me a comment & let me know. 

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Weird Fact About Pharm Girl

I have this red pen.  When I first started my job we had a whole box of pens like this.  That was a little over 8 years ago.  The pen in this pic is the last one.  I have been using it for as long as I can remember.  And for a very long bit of that time it has been about to run out of ink.  I can use this pen to do something quick like mark something off of a To Do List or write the date, but that's about it.  The red starts to fade out & I think well, that's it!  The pen is officially done!  But I set it on the corner of my desk instead of throwing it away.  The next time I pick it up it writes again.  Only for something quick though, because the red will start to fade...and so the cycle continues.
I don't know why I just can't pitch it.  It seems so wasteful to get rid of it when it still works (a little bit) but so silly to hold onto it if I can't use it for every task.  I must of caught a little bit of that Depression Era wisdom from The G's.  They would never throw anything away until it was completely used up & if it could be recycled into something practical for another use, they would do that too.
So that's a little confession of weirdness from me on this sunny, blustery, spring-ish Wednesday.  Consider the ice broken - share your own bits of weirdness if you dare!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Now I Gotta Plan!

I was looking for a reason to be excited today...I'm not feeling the best.  I kind of feel like I'm on the edge of something...something like a bad cold, strep throat, the flu, or my own paranoid hypochondria.  That being said, I was super glad to see an email from Zoe in my inbox letting me know about my international craft swap partner.  I'm going to be crafting for someone in Queensland, Australia!  I think that is super cool.  I've never sent a package to Australia before!
Maybe this afternoon I will ditch my training run, head for the couch at home, peruse some crafting supplies, drink some hot tea, & come up with a plan for my swap.
I think I might already feel a little better.