Friday, February 3, 2023

In my opinion...

Happy Friday everyone! Yahoo. We made it to the weekend. This week has been tiring and exhausting. Kids have been crazy at work as they have not been able to go outside due to temperatures. My own kids have had a busy schedule this week. Then yesterday both boys were home with fevers. Thankfully they were back to normal today. 



Speaking of yesterday, I didn't mean to start controversy for saying that I supported Prince Harry and his wife and that I enjoyed reading Spare. If the comments on my post were any indication, I am in the minority that like Harry and Meghan. That is what makes us all interesting though, in that we all have differing opinions on some things and agree on others. 

So today, I thought I would explore some of those other controversial opinions that I encountered this week, starting with: 

Does pineapple belong on pizza? 


In my opinion, pineapple only belongs on Hawaiian
 pizza with ham, cheese and onions. It doesn't belong on any other types of pizza. 

What is your opinion on the new Most Oreo Oreo?



 
In my opinion, they are not good. Too much cream. It throws the ratio off of cream to cookie. I am the only one in my house who thinks this. Bill and the kids love them. 

When is it appropriate to put out holiday items for sale at a store? Is it before or after the next holiday? For example, I was at CVS on Thursday, and they already had Easter items for sale. It was only February 2!!! 



In my opinion, stores need to wait until after the previous holiday to put the next holiday items out. For example, Easter items should not be out until AFTER Valentine's Day. Christmas items should be out after Thanksgiving and not before, etc. 

What are YOUR opinions on these matters? 


Thursday, February 2, 2023

Spare

Happy Thursday everyone! Hope you are having a good week so far. Only one more day to Friday! Happy Groundhog Day as well! I'm hoping for a quicker Spring, but I doubt it. In fact, around here the weather is getting colder tomorrow with temperatures in the negatives. Oh well, it is winter. 

Changing subjects... today, I wanted to hop on here and recap the only book that I read in January. That book being Spare by Prince Harry.

 

Now before I go any further, I should preface by saying that before I read the book, I admired Prince Harry's gut and his willingness to forge his own path. I have been a fan of his and Meghan Markle's since they got engaged. I am also a fan of the Royal Family. I thought Queen Elizabeth was a fascinating individual and I would watch documentaries and shows about the royal family. So, I thought going into reading Spare that I wouldn't have a lot of revelations. 

Well, I was wrong. This is a heart wrenching telling of Harry's life from the time his mom was killed until now. It tells how the paparazzi has shaped his life, even though it absolutely kills him that it does. The paparazzi has invaded ALL aspects of his life and really is one of the many reasons he is the way that he is. In this book, Harry tells it all... the good- like how he met Meghan, the friendships he made in the military, etc., the bad- like when he and William would argue and fight over his decisions, his use of drugs quite often, etc. and the ugly- his reactions over his mother's death, when he realized that the family was corporation first and family second. He accounts different times that he felt like he could be himself, where each time was exclusively out of Great Britain. He found solace in the wilderness in Africa and in the wilderness of the North and South Poles. He found solace with people who wanted much more from their life than just glam and glitz of being royal. 

Spare was, to me, a refreshing, eye-opening account of what being a royal in today's society is. It was a heart-wrenching story of how a child's life was changed by people who only wanted money and didn't care about people. It was reminder that mental health issues need to be taken seriously and that when you surround yourself with people who care you can begin to live your best life. It was a look into the mind of a man who thought he understood what his role should be, only to have the rug pulled out from under him by his own family members for their own benefit. It was a look into the mind of a man who is finally able to look himself in the mirror and be confident that he is doing what is best for himself, his wife and his children and that will be his legacy. 

I highly recommend this book. 

Have you read Spare? What do you think of Prince Harry? Are you a fan of the Royal Family? 

Wednesday, February 1, 2023

Weigh In Wednesday #5 of 2023



Happy Wednesday everyone! I hope everyone is having a good week. It has been cold here, but we are dealing. Yesterday was a super busy day. I put dinner in the crockpot, took the kids to school, ran a phone charger to Bill at work, picked up a couple things at Walmart, had a nephrologist appointment, went to work, went to Aldi and Kroger, picked Jacob up from school, came home and put all groceries away, made rice for dinner, and collapsed on the couch. LOL 

My nephrology appointment went well. I am probably back to feeling around 85%-90% better. My phosphate levels are still low, so she is adding a 3rd phosphate pill each day. She also wants me to take a Vitamin D3 supplement, as my levels are a little low. As she said, it can't hurt since we never see the sunshine in winter here in Ohio. LOL. She was also happy that since my last appointment (last month) I have lost 5 pounds! 

I mentioned in my New Year's goal post that I wanted to hopefully lose weight this year. I am at the heaviest I have ever been, and I NEED to lose weight to get healthy. I am going to make Wednesdays my weigh in Wednesday day. So, this will be my weekly update. Today is weigh in #5 for the year.

The good things in my weight loss journey this past week were: I was aware of the food choices that I was making. I didn't drink any soda or any drinks with calories. It was all water and unsweetened tea a couple times. 

The bad things in my weight loss journey this week were: I ate out too much. I didn't journal my food or exercise or water 3 days. I didn't exercise regularly. I think I only exercised 2 times all week, although I did a lot of walking last weekend at Rebecca's solo and ensemble event. 

So, taking into account the good and the bad, I guess it is time to get down to the facts and see if I lost any weight this week. 

My Starting Weight on 1/1/2023: 265.8lbs.
My weight last week: 262.8lbs.
My weight this week: 261.8lbs.
Weight loss/gain from last week: -1.0bs
Total weight loss Year to Date: -4.0lbs

I am shocked that I lost weight. I really didn't think that I would, but I will take it. That means for the month of January, I lost a total of 4 pounds. That is better than nothing. Now to get back into exercise mode. 

Are you on a weight loss journey? If you are on a weight loss journey, how is it going?   


Monday, January 30, 2023

Menu Plan Monday #5 of 2023

Happy Monday! Today is the last Monday of January. I can't believe January is almost over. Man has it been a crazy month. This weekend was busy, and this week also looks like it will be quite busy. The kids have a lot of after school stuff, I have a doctor's appointment and a meeting, work, etc. Such is the phase of life that I am in. If you read my last post, then you know that I took some time yesterday to prep some fresh veggies and salads for this week's lunches as a way to get ahead. Another way that I am keeping my sanity is by knowing what is for dinner each night and not having to make last minute decisions on what to cook. 

This year, I am bringing back the Menu Plan Monday postings that will allow me to share what we ate and what I am planning on making. I love reading what others are cooking and getting inspiration from others for meals. Maybe by posting this I can be an inspiration to someone else. 

Before we get to the menu plan, I thought I'd share something lighthearted. 



Ok, now let's get back to the menu plan...

So how did we do with last week's menu plan? 
 
Monday: meatloaf, julienne potatoes, peas, roasted broccoli applesauce.



Tuesday: Soft tacos and Mexican corn




Wednesday: Crockpot lasagna soup and garlic bread



Thursday: Pork and Peppers, macaroni and cheese mashed potatoes, sauteed  french style green beans




Friday: Pizza for the kids. Bill and I had a date night at the local Chinese buffet. 




Saturday: I am not sure yet, as Rebecca has solo and ensemble choir competition, and the boys have basketball. Rebecca and I ended up having Wendy's for dinner. Bill and the boys had McDonald's after the boys' games. (Sorry no photo!) 

Sunday: Ritz Cracker Chicken, Macaroni and Cheese, and Veggies of some sort (I ended up microwaving a bag of Asian mix veggies) 




What are we eating this week?

 
Monday: Crockpot Potato Soup and rolls

Tuesday: Fiesta Chicken in the Crockpot and Rice

Wednesday: Chicken Pot Pie and Salad

Thursday: Pot roast, mashed potatoes, green beans, maybe rolls

Friday: Pizza and fruit

Saturday: I am not sure yet. Maybe pasta bake? 

What are you eating this week? 

Sunday, January 29, 2023

Sunday in the Kitchen

Happy Sunday everyone! After a busy day yesterday at Solo and Ensemble with Rebecca, today was a day to get ready for the week. As we are all aware, the cost of groceries is skyrocketing and it's insane. To battle some of the rising costs, I am going to start making more things from scratch and making sure we do not waste produce. That is my focus right now. So today after teaching PSR, going to church, and waiting while my kiddos had youth choir practice, I came home and got to work in the kitchen. 

Today I made chocolate chip cookie bars (using a cake mix from the pantry that needed used up), from scratch brownies, and Cranberry-Orange bread to supplement breakfast offerings.


 

Then I laid down on the couch and took an hour-long nap! LOL 

After getting up from my nap, I made dinner and then cleaned up the dinner dishes before focusing on produce (mostly our veggies). I took all the produce out of my refrigerator and proceeded to chop and bag it up for easy access for the kids. I sliced up a red bell pepper and a green bell pepper, bagged up individual servings of baby carrots and cherry tomatoes, chopped up 2 English cucumbers and a huge head of broccoli. I also made four containers of salad for lunches (as Ben has been requesting salads for his school lunches lately.)


It feels good to have stuff prepared so that I can just throw it in the lunch bags in the mornings.

Now I am tired and going to post this and get ready for bed. I have a pretty busy week ahead, so I need my rest. 

Do you prep food for the week ahead? Do you make desserts for the week ahead? 

Saturday, January 28, 2023

Solo and Ensemble Competition

Happy Saturday everyone! Sorry I didn't post yesterday. It ended up being a very busy day. I had to get some blood work done and a urine test done for my upcoming nephrology appointment. I went to the hospital and got it done. Then I had to head to work. Well, while I was at work, I got a call from the lab that they needed me to redo the urine test. So instead of having a lunch date with Bill after I got off work, I headed back to the hospital and did the urine test again. We decided to instead have a dinner date. So, after I came home from the hospital, I ate a quick lunch and then hung out with Bill and the kids after they got home from school. Bill and I ended up going out to the Chinese buffet for dinner, someplace we haven't been in a really long time. According to their sign it is actually the ET. LOL 




The food was really good. I found that I leaned more to the veggies. I was excited to see green beans and zucchini. Maybe my mentality towards food is changing, even though again this week has been tough with eating due to stress. 

Today has been crazy busy as well. I spent most of the day with Rebecca had the OMEA solo and ensemble event. Before the event there was some craziness. She was checking her texts at around 10:50 while I was ironing her dress she was going to wear. First came a plea for someone who could give a ride to one of the members of the ensemble, whose mom told her this morning she didn't have enough gas money to go to the competition and back. Several of the other girls were already at the competition, so couldn't. I said we could as long as she could be ready by 11:15. Well, then Rebecca was reading all the other texts and realized that everyone else in ensemble were wearing black and white. Well, she had planned on wearing the rust-colored dress she was wearing for her solo. So, we quickly found her black choir pants and I told her to text her friend we would get her closer to 11:30 as we had to make a quick stop at Walmart for a white or black shirt. Rebecca found a white sweater that is really cute and then we picked her friend up. Rebecca needed to be at the competition site at 12:24 and we pulled into the parking lot at 12:23. 

Last year Rebecca participated for the first time and did really well in her ensemble event. This year she competed in Solo. She performed "Florian's Song" and did AMAZING! She earned a 1, which is great and the top score. What was even better though was that while she was performing there was another performer in the room with her choir director and after Rebecca performed and we left the room, the other choir director stopped Rebecca's director and said, "I don't know that girl, but I heard her, and you need to make sure she continues singing." That compliment meant so much to Rebecca. 




She also performed with her ensemble, and they did wonderful as well. They also earned a 1, which is the top score. I am so proud of her.


 

Now we are home and exhausted and tired. However, it is a good exhaustion. 

Hope everyone else had a great Saturday! 

What were you up to today? 

Thursday, January 26, 2023

Ghosts?

Happy Thursday everyone!

Last weekend I was feeling kind of down, so went on social media and ended up going down a rabbit hole of looking at paranormal videos and ghost sightings. Before I go further, please know that I do believe in ghosts and have encountered a few in my own life. That being said, I find it fascinating and kind of freaky at the same time. 

Well, on Saturday and Sunday, I found myself passing time by going down the rabbit hole that is Facebook reels. Several of the ones that I watched involved a TikTok app called AI Manga. This is a filter that turns your home or wherever you point your phone into an anime scene, including turning you into an anime character. Well, apparently in December 2022, they added a feature that would detect ghosts/ paranormal activity in your home, etc. 

Well, I don't have TikTok, but Rebecca does. I asked her about the app, and she had it on her account. So, we decided to do some ghost hunting in our home. 

Well, the first area we did was a corner of our living room, where I have an exercise bike and there is a window. Usually, there is a draft there and often as a baby Ben used to stare at the steps like he was seeing something there. This is a picture of the corner taken with no filter...



And here is that corner taken with the AI Manga filter (this is a screenshot from Rebecca's phone)...


There was no one standing near the window. The anime person on the right side is Bill who was sitting in the recliner. I will admit I gasped when I saw the photo as I really wasn't expecting to see anything. It was freaky. The boys were especially freaked out. 

After they went to bed, I decided to go through the rest of the downstairs to see if it picked anything up. Apparently, we have ghosts in our mudroom/pantry, bathroom and near our desk and going into our basement. 

My brain is saying that this is just a computer effect, but I think it is pretty freaky but cool. 

If you have read to this point, maybe you think I have lost my marbles. I know, when I was explaining to Rebecca how I went down the rabbit hole of paranormal, she asked if I was feeling okay. LOL. I do say that though that I think there is some truth to this filter. I have had experiences with seeing the ghost of my grandmother's 1st husband who died before I was born, hearing the chimes of a former railroad engineer working on the railroad outside of my friend's home, etc. 

What about you? Do you believe in ghosts? Have you ever had an encounter with a ghost? Ever used a filter like the AI Manga? 

Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Weigh In Wednesday #4 of 2023



Happy Wednesday everyone! Sorry this post is going up late today. We woke up to a snow day today. It snowed around 3-4 inches between 3AM and 7AM this morning and then it changed over to freezing rain and then rain off and on during the day. So school was closed, which is our 2nd snow day this week. The kids and I just hung out at home. I did some laundry, baked some pumpkin bread, made lasagna soup in the crockpot and just puttered around. 

I mentioned in my New Year's goal post that I wanted to hopefully lose weight this year. I am at the heaviest I have ever been, and I NEED to lose weight to get healthy. I am going to make Wednesdays my weigh in Wednesday day. So, this will be my weekly update. Today is weigh in #4 for the year.

The good things in my weight loss journey this past week were: I was aware of the food choices that I was making. I did well when ordering food from Jersey Mike's (skipped the oil and vinegar, ordered wheat bread, etc.) Was able to hit my water goal every day but 1. 

The bad things in my weight loss journey this week were: I ate out too much. I had Jersey Mike's one day, McDonald's one day, and Wendy's twice. I wasn't able to exercise most days due to my back hurting. I didn't journal my food on Sunday. I just wasn't in the mood. I snacked WAY too much on chocolate. 

So, taking into account the good and the bad, I guess it is time to get down to the facts and see if I lost any weight this week. 

My Starting Weight on 1/1/2023: 265.8lbs.
My weight last week: 260.6lbs
My weight this week: 262.8lbs.
Weight loss/gain from last week: +2.2lbs
Total weight loss Year to Date: -3.0lbs

I am not surprised that I gained weight this week. I expected it. Now I need to get back on track with journaling and exercising. I need to do this. I can do this. 

Are you on a weight loss journey? If you are on a weight loss journey, how is it going?   


Monday, January 23, 2023

Menu Plan Monday #4 of 2023

Happy Monday everyone! It was a low-key weekend here, with basketball for the boys on Saturday and then church on Sunday.




We were home the rest of Sunday as it was snowing and cold. We got a few inches of snow and it was quite pretty. I took a nap in the afternoon and just rested. 



It was a nice weekend, given that this week is going to be quite busy. Although today just got a little easier. The kids and I have a snow day! The roads were too icy this morning for buses to run, so we went from a 2 hour delay day to a no school day. I still have to go out later to take Jacob to a doctor's appointment, but now I don't need to worry about picking him up early from school, etc. I guess that means I need to spend some time straightening up the house and doing laundry. But before I do that, I wanted to jump on here and post my menu plan (to keep up with my 365 blogging!)  

This year, I am bringing back the Menu Plan Monday postings that will allow me to share what we ate and what I am planning on making. I love reading what others are cooking and getting inspiration from others for meals. Maybe by posting this I can be an inspiration to someone else. 

Before we get to the menu plan, I thought I'd share something lighthearted. 



Ok, now let's get back to the menu plan...

So how did we do with last week's menu plan? 

Monday: Pork Chops with squash and spinach (this is a new recipe), Velveeta mac-n-cheese, peas, applesauce cup
(The pork chop recipe was okay. I liked it somewhat. The rest of the family didn't like the veggies on top. They thought the pork was okay. I have other recipes for pork chops that we like so much better. )


 

Tuesday: Wendy's for Bill and the boys; Jersey Mike's for Rebecca and me (we had a busy night.) (I had a turkey and provolone sub with lettuce, tomato, onion and a little bit of their pepper relish with a dash of the spices they use on wheat bread. I discovered Jersey Mike's pepper relish on this trip, and it is so good on the sub that I didn't miss the oil and vinegar! I skipped the oil and vinegar trying to make it a little bit healthier.)  



Wednesday: Breakfast for dinner-- Pancakes, scrambled eggs, sausage, and fruit


Thursday: Red bag chicken sandwiches, salad, french fries



Friday: Make your own pizzas and fruit. I ended up making homemade pizzas with Walmart dough, freshly shredded cheese and pepperoni. They were really yummy. 




Saturday: 8 can taco soup




Sunday: Chicken and Cheese Casserole, green bean, corn, peaches



What are we eating this week?
 
Monday: meatloaf, julienne potatoes, peas, roasted broccoli applesauce.

Tuesday: Soft tacos and Mexican corn

Wednesday: Crockpot lasagna soup and garlic bread

Thursday: Pork and Peppers, macaroni and cheese, sauteed green beans

Friday: Pizza

Saturday: I am not sure yet, as Rebecca has solo and ensemble choir competition, and the boys have basketball. 

What are you eating this week? 

Sunday, January 22, 2023

I was going to write something lighthearted tonight, but with so much heaviness in the world I can't. So instead, I will say this... it is through these times that we need to pray for those who are dealing with things that are horrible. We need to cherish each day and each other as if it is the last day we have with them. No one knows when their time here on Earth is done. Life is so short and we need to take advantage of the time we do have. 

Sending extra prayers tonight to SAM over at Sam, Coffee, Money, & Thyme who lost her husband unexpectedly this week. 

I'll be back tomorrow with regular blogging.