Friday, October 30, 2015

What I'm Reading This Week: Halloween Edition


We kept our streak of no trick or treaters.  WTF man??  (sniffing armpit Duckie style)  "Do I o-ffend?"  Not even the Christmas vandal showed up and I thought he'd use any excuse he could to come in since he walked right into our garage and practically crawled in our car.  

But enough of the neighborhood glommer, let's get to...

What It's Like Spending Retirement as “Senior Gypsies”   (This sounds like a good idea!)

10 Wild Facts About Duran Duran  (I demand to hear this shelved album!)

45 Convincing Reasons to Exercise and Eat Right That Aren't Weight Loss  (Duly noted)

Dog Steals the Spotlight From Engaged Couple with Hilarious Photobombs  (The first one almost made me wee.  Soooo funny!)

Can You Believe This Woman Ran a Marathon and No One Knew About It?  (The video...I can't even)

The Real Cost Of Living In A Horror Movie Home  (Interesting numbers)

15 Facts You Didn't Know About the Original 'Ghostbusters,' From Bill Murray's Secret Role to the Reptile That Almost Terrorized New York  (Love the Stay Puft concept drawings!)

This Video About the Absurdity of the Paleo Diet Is Hilariously on Point  ("but I'm happy to move forward without an argument."  I almost reverse neti potted my tea)

My Dog: The Paradox  (Most dog owners can relate!)

Does the Size of Your Actual Stomach Shrink When You Eat Less?  (This was the super popular answer to everything in my youth.  Interesting to know what that would actually entail!)

Why Is There An ‘R’ in Mrs.?  (I know it has a different connotation now but I'd prefer to be called the original.  It sounds very Patrick Stewart Christmas Carol.  I shall have the Mr refer to me as that from now on.)

The 30 Worst Decisions You Can Make at an Airport  (If you travel at all, read this)

This Brilliant Trick for Peeling Potatoes Is Borderline Life-Changing  (If I didn't keep the skins on my potatoes, I would totally try this!  Maybe for potato salad in the summer)

Why Is Poop Brown?  (I kept it high brow this week)

Q&A: 'Bones,' 'Sleepy' stars team up for Halloween  (Wow...Tom Mison is super private about his  personal life.  (Which I love!)  I hope the Bones guy had permission to drop Tom's baby news!  The crossover was okay but let's not do that again.)

Take a Tour of the Sleepy Hollow Cemetery   (I'm not a fan of the format but skip to 3:00 mark to listen to one of the guides at Washington Irving's grave.  This cemetery is one of our favorite places.  Definitely visit if you get a chance!)

Our Halloween Treat to You  (This is an oldie but goodie!  I remember sending this around the office back in the day and you knew when someone was playing it because you could hear the bag screaming!  Happy Halloween!)

Since it's Devil's Night, I may have to insist we watch The Crow.  Man, I miss Brandon Lee.  Then a Halloween movie marathon this weekend and select Halloween candy.  Nothing else really planned.

What are you guys doing this weekend?

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Thursday, October 29, 2015

What I'm Lovin' Lately

Tonight is trick or treat in our 'hood.  I expect we'll have the same amount we had in years past...zilch.  The only one who might try to show up is the Christmas vandal because I think he has a mission to make the Mr his dad.  Sorry kid, you're barking up the wrong tree.  This is a man who held his cousin with outstretched arms when she was 18 months saying "what does it want?"  Plus when you break our new Christmas decoration, we don't reward that with candy, little man.

Anyhoo, let's get to what I'm lovin' lately!

Pumpkin Ginger Applesauce

I can't say it enough, the Mr and I love this stuff!  We've been having this over our usual apples this week for a change of pace and I look forward to that smooth bite of fall and am always sad when it's gone.  I side eye the bowl of it in the fridge but tell myself if I snarfed it now, I couldn't enjoy any tomorrow.  I will absolutely be making more of this!

Andalou Naturals Soothing Body Lotion - 1000 Roses  (affiliate link) 

I have been slowly switching over to Andalou Naturals for my skin care.  When I saw a sale going on at the health food store for $2.50 off, I had to snatch this up.  I tried a sample of it at the grocery store a few weeks ago and it was so silky and not greasy at all.  It has a light smell of roses that won't interfere with any perfume you might wear and with winter coming up, I'm sure I'll be slathering this stuff on by the bucket full!

Listerine Naturals Antiseptic Mouthwash  (affiliate link) 


I have always detested the medicine taste of Listerine and other mouthwashes seemed to just taste too sweet and felt like I was swishing with sugar water.  Plus, why did it need to be dyed?  I mean I didn't need a visual cue to know if I was swishing with mint or spearmint.  After perusing the mouthwash aisle, way too long, Listerine Naturals caught my eye.  It has no artificial flavors, sweeteners or dyes.  I was skeptical about the taste but knew the Mr didn't care so it would still get used.  Turns out it tastes like true mint, no medicine after taste and no worry about blue dye hanging around on the toofers!  It has the exact same active ingredient as regular Listerine so no difference there.  The only thing I notice is that tingle afterward doesn't last as long but I view that as a positive.  I'll definitely get this again!

Wicked City

(via Wikipedia)
We've been looking forward to the premiere of this show.  Anything to support former Parenthood  (Erika Christensen)  and Six Feet Under (Jeremy Sisto) alums.  The fact it's set in the 80's on the Sunset Strip was a major bonus.  (Anyone see Stephen Pearcy from Ratt's cameo as the backstage groupie wrangler?)  It's definitely an edgy show and if you didn't get a chance to check out the premiere, you can watch it online free this week.  Give it a shot and see if you like it too!

Get Back to Her (featuring Dita Von Teese) by Love, Ecstasy and Terror

(via SoundCloud)

When I find a song I fall in love with, I've gotta share because the state of music these days...ugh, don't get me started.  I totally found this song by accident on Soundcloud (which I think is the only place you can hear it right now) and I'm so glad I did.  It's got a dark 80's vibe, kind of Depeche Mode-ish mixed with an Adam Levine-ish voice.  I know.  It's hard to pinpoint (yay!) but Dita Von Teese's voice is perfect in this.  If the rest of the album sounds like this, I can't wait until it's released!

What are some things you're lovin' lately?

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Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Balmy day and upcoming Halloween hijinx

Happy Hump Day y'all!

Yesterday was kind of uneventful.  Oh!  I did finally get around to making the Mr's after shave balm.  It's 1/2 cup of Shea Butter , 2 tbsp of Jojoba Oil and Lavender Essential Oil.  (affiliate links)  I softened the shea butter in the microwave and whipped everything together with the hand mixer.  I saved back and sanitized one of my empty Beekman honey jars for something and that was it.

It's a good moisturizer to use after any kind of shaving so who knows, I might grab some from time to time.

The Mr is in a training class this week so he gets off later than usual for three days.  Last night he had some overtime he had to work after hours so that left us with a very thin window to get in our workout.  It was basically a straight shot to the dungeon when he got in the door.  We did Turbo Fire 45 EZ.   For dinner I made chicken black bean quesadillas and brussels which unfortunately got a little more charred than I care to serve.  Sigh.

I was flipping channels and saw the original Friday the 13th was on.  Man that is a looong friggin' movie with no real action until the last 20 minutes.  I don't know that I'll be watching that again any time soon.  Hmm, I suppose I should throw Nightmare on Elm Street on in the next few days and maybe oh yeah...Fright Night!  The REAL one from '85.  Maybe that's what we'll do Saturday is have a Halloween movie marathon.  It's the day we get to pick out a few different kinds of fun sized bars for our Halloween candy instead of buying the bags of candy for trick or treaters that never come and we're stuck with temptation by the bag.  Plus it'll be mah 'ladies days' so chocolate will be in order anyway.

What Halloween candy do you buy for the trick or treaters?  Do you buy something you like or something that doesn't tempt you?  (Like I could buy a bag of Almond Joys and never touch that stuff but you give me a bag of the orange and black wrapped peanut butter bit o' honey thingys that nobody wants and the Mr and I are goners!)

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Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Crockpot Pumpkin Ginger Applesauce

Are you guys sick of pumpkin spice everything yet?  Too bad!  I have one more thing you're going to want to put the pumpkin twist on...especially those of you sitting on some apples you need to use up!  The most work you'll have to do is prepping the apples.

Here's what you'll need:

Pumpkin Ginger Applesauce (Ten 5 ounce servings)

6 apples (I used 2 honeycrisp and 4 northern spies- use your preference in baking apples!)
1 can organic pumpkin puree (not pie filling!)
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
5 slices crystallized ginger
1/2 cup water

Dice the crystallized ginger.

Peel, core and slice the apples.  (Or keep the skin on if you prefer)

Cut into like sized chunks.

Time to go into the crock pot!

Add 2 tbsp of lemon juice and water.

Add the can of pumpkin.

Add 1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice.

Add diced ginger.

Give it a stir to incorporate everything.

Set it on low for 3 hours.

Check the consistency of the apples to see if they're ready to mashing.

Cook until largest chunks of apple are fork tender.  When it comes time to finish it off, you can go one of two ways.  Grab your potato masher and take out some aggression.

This will produce a more "rustic", chunky texture to your applesauce.

If you like the smooth, creamy texture of traditional applesauce, break out the immersion blender (affiliate link)  right in the crock pot.  Or turn it off, let it cool for 15 minutes and transfer to your regular blender to puree.

How easy was that!?

Nothing says fall like a nice dish of your apple pickin' labor garnished with some ginger strips.  Yum!

It will keep 7-10 days in the fridge but good luck getting it to last that long.  ;-)  From what I read, you can freeze it too but I can't vouch for it.

Linked up with The Crafty Blog Stalker,  Home Stories A to Z,  Sand and Sisal,  Savvy Southern Style, Tater Tots and Jello
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Monday, October 26, 2015

Apple slicin', birthday lunchin' and cool weather paddlin'

Happy Monday you sexy peeps!

It was a good weekend.  Saturday we went to a diner we like and got peanut butter chocolate chip pancakes.  We got there later than we hoped, so we loaded up for brunch since we knew it would have to last until dinner.  We went shopping.  I had a few things I needed to pick up and a few things I didn't need but you know, ended up in a bag with my name on it.  We watched some football and were glad to kick up our feet after a long day.  I think I wore the Mr out.  He needed a nap before watching some pigskin action.

Sunday we met my mom for lunch for a belated birthday lunch for the Mr.  We were supposed to meet her before our trip but she got sick and while she was okay with still meeting, we weren't taking a chance a few days before a paid for trip.  We ended up staying there and talking for 2 1/2 hours!  I'm sure the server loved us.  Then we came home and I needed to tend to my Northern Spies before they got grody on me.

I was a happy girl listening to KCSM jazz while peeling, coring and cutting my apples.  I seasoned them with pumpkin pie spice and froze them then vacuum froze them for Thanksgiving pies.  It works out great and has most of the work done for me apple wise except for the vanilla sugar to toss them in before baking.  I have to make two this year because people fought over my apple crumb biscoff pie last year.  I even asked mom if she'd mind if I took a stab at the sweet potatoes this year.  Usually she dumps the Bruce's yams out of the can, adds a buttload of sugar and it gives me a cavity.  I'm going to roast them, toss them in real maple syrup and billionaire's bacon.  Mostly nice with a little naughty.  She said I could but with that kind of undertone when she said "I've never had them like that."  Hopefully she'll love them.  I'm sure I'll know pretty quickly.  HA!

We went paddling when I was done and even though it was 60 degrees with a head wind, we enjoyed having the water mostly to ourselves...well except for a few friends.

We took in the fall colors as I know they'll be gone far too soon.  Probably next weekend.

I stabbed my foot on a sharp rock getting out of the yak and didn't feel the brunt of it until I got home.  I iced it a bit but it hurt to even sit it on the ice pack.  Hopefully it'll feel better today.

What did you guys do this weekend?

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Friday, October 23, 2015

Interview recap and what I'm reading this week

Finally Friday!  This week has actually gone kind of quick for us for some reason.

A few have asked how the Mr's interview went.  Honestly, neither of us are super jazzed.  It sounds like he knocked it out of the park but the problem is it's a new position with no real job description and not in that "good! I can help shape the duties kind of way."  It sounds like he would be a dumping ground again and it sounds like the potential for getting calls on the weekend and going back to being chained to a laptop for road trips would be a possibility with no one else on shifts to handle such issues like he has now.  It's a little maddening when the person hiring for the job can't tell you a damn thing about it.  It could be better or jumping from the frying pan into the fire.  So yeah, not overly confident on this one.

But enough about the Mr's nondescript interview and let's get to...

Meet Target's "Plus-Size" Male Model  (He's a cutie!)

12 Ways We Sabotage Our Mental Health  (Wow, guilty of most of these)

10 Hilarious Confessions Every Dieter Can Relate To   (Too funny)

Gwen Stefani Sits on a Precipice: 'I'm Almost in the Exact Same Place That I Was' With 'Tragic Kingdom'  (Love Gwen)

Here's How to Tell When You Should Lift Heavier Weights  (Reminds me, I need to get another set of inbetweeners)

What’s Happened to Halloween  (I'm with ya, Ed)

Watch the ad bringing everyone to tears   (Including me)

39 Ways to Sneak Storage Into Your Home  (I need all the storage I can get)

Sarah Silverman Opens Up About Her Battle With Depression and Her Gutsiest Career Move Yet  (Not necessarily a fan but good read)

Marty McFly & Doc Brown Visit Jimmy Kimmel Live  (Cute sketch for you BttF fans)

See How Chip and Joanna Gaines Deck Out Their Farmhouse For the Holidays  (Some great ideas!)

Looks like I'm Bill Murray, AMA Round 2!    (Bill is the man!  I'm going to start asking myself WWBMD?)

I've got a peck of apples I need to get peeled, cut and vacuum sealed for holiday pies.  There may be a new recipe in there somewhere.  I just hope I'm well enough to taste it because what I have in mind sounds really good.  

What are y'all into this weekend?

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Thursday, October 22, 2015

Lazy crud, fall fun and 1.21 gigawatts

Bonjour all!

The bod is fighting off something.  I think that's why I felt so unmotivated and lump like Monday.  The day before yesterday I woke up with one gland super dry, like maybe I was mouth breathing all night or something.  I drowned myself in water and tea and as the day went on it went from the gland (not swollen) to the whole throat being irritated.  Kind of like that irritation you get with post nasal drip but you don't know if it's a cold or allergies.  When I went to bed that night I could feel my sinuses getting slightly congested but still unsure whether or not it was a cold or allergies.  I figured I'd wake up the next day with a definitive answer but it was about like it was the night before.  This morning however, I have my answer...cold.  Ugh, for real!?!  A slow moving torturous something or other in there?  Then I started having flashbacks to my 4 month ordeal over Christmas into April where I couldn't smell or taste and all of the medical stuff I had to go through.  I'd better not be heading that direction.  I do not have the mental capacity to deal with that right now.

Luckily I felt good enough to paddle.  It was the first time we had full fall colors in our neck of the woods and we enjoyed a pre-sunset frolic on the water.

Then stopped to enjoy the sunset...

...before being attacked by bugs.

Last night, like many, we watched Back to the Future.  (affiliate link) 

It's the Mr's favorite movie and I can tolerate it every few years.  (It's not that I don't like it, more that I'm kind of indifferent to it.)  It was the first one we watched because I just cannot watch the others.  They were...not good.

Then we watched The Goldbergs.  Boy Barry was pretty friggin' hilarious.

What have you done to enjoy the beauty of fall this season?

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Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Vacation mellow...harshed

Buongiorno all!

Yesterday was supposed to be the Mr's "quiet" day but it wasn't.  Halfway through the day I couldn't see his neck anymore so I gave him a little neck massage to try to loosen him up.  I think that lasted 5 minutes.  There's nothing worse than going on vacation, being totally relaxed and one day back into your job and you're just as stressed if not more than before you left.  Today is set to be even worse schedule wise.  The one bright spot is he has a phone interview so please send good vibes his way that this job is a nice step to less stress for him.  I can see his light burning out the longer he stays in that department so I'm praying this is an out for him.

When he asked what workout I wanted to do, I had no idea and he asked if I wanted to walk at the park.  It seemed more of a need so I obliged and we enjoyed the fall colors.

We both were really feeling the unevenness of the gravel and trail.  Broken is how we both feel where our feet/legs are concerned.  But that tends to happen when we go from our normal routine to a vacation routine (walking 5 miles a day and paddling a few times this time) and back again.  We need to be diligent about rolling, massages and ultra-sounding, especially me since the Achilles tendon isn't as healed as I thought it was before we left.  I think we may be paddling tonight before a colder snap comes in.

We did enjoy watching It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown last night.  Man I miss old school Halloween.  Tonight, of course, we're watching Back to the Future.

Do you consider your job stressful?  How do you de-stress from a bad work day?

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Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Lack of motivation and a land far, far away

Guten morgen all!

Here is where a blogger who did something productive with their day would have a whole list of accomplishments.  I, however, have none of that.  I had absolutely no energy yesterday.  I did gather the strength to make some turkey chili for last night's dinner and then the thought of making lunch after that was just  I figured since breakfast and lunch were a little on the heavier side, I'd go light for lunch and just have a salad and my fruit.  Two hours later, I wanted to eat my hand.  The first week back from vacation is always an adjustment period.  We go from eating what we want, when we want and to being back on our schedule with our regular food and trying to get my water intake back up.

We went down and did a free weight session to (read this next part as Hans and Franz from SNL) "reintroduce our flabby muscles to strength training so we don't look like girly men."  Then it was time to grab a shower, eat our chili...

then drop off a gift to a family member for their milestone birthday.  We weren't able to make their birthday dinner but meeting them after work to shoot da poo, catch up on 'the latest' and talk about our newest TV assessments.  It was cold outside and of course all of the water I drank just before we left had me wondering if their parking lot had a video camera that would catch me peeing in the field next to it.  Thankfully I was able to hold out instead of pulling a Harry Dunne on the back of an Aspen bound scooter and peeing for warmth and relief.

When we got home, the Mr ate up the new Star Wars trailer after having to sit through some boring football.  He, of course, had to rewind and watch it again.  There was no response so I wasn't sure if that meant he liked what he saw or not.  So I asked him the only logical thing a wife would..."do you have a chubby."  He laughed hysterically but never answered.  Mystery...the spice of marriage.

Anyone excited for the upcoming Star Wars?

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Monday, October 19, 2015

The Mr's birthday trip

Good Monday mornin' all!

We're back from a week in Traverse City, Michigan.  I can't tell you how great it is to not look at a single email, social media and all that jazz for that amount of time.  No computers or cell phones allowed.  (Correction:  It's best when we go on extended vacations and I can go without knowing a single freakin' thing going on in the world!)

I was going to try to surprise the Mr for his birthday by packing the trunk behind his back with all the things we'd need, including the board/yak and just have him drive and drive.  The only problem was, I waited too long to book the condo I was looking at and the only other ones available in my price range was at a condo complex we stayed at before that the Mr swore he'd never stay in again.  So I had to come clean because it was either stay in the cheaply constructed, loud condos or not go at all.  He opted with going.  Then I kicked myself again because I should've just booked it anyway.  But I couldn't deal with all the planning it was going to take, only to pull up and see that look of dread on his face and a monotone..."great...this place again."  Maybe I'll be able to pull off a surprise another year.

We made a pit stop in Frankenmuth, MI where Bronner's Christmas World is.  For this Christmas girl, it's a must do.

On the Mr's birthday, I had planned to paddle in Betsie Lake and go out into the lighthouse area which is his favorite spot.  Unfortunately when we got there, the wind was so bad, we surely would've drown even with our PFD's on.  I had Crystal Lake as a back up and even though it was windy, it was thankfully much more calm.

The water truly was crystal clear and I wasn't afraid of getting any in my mouth or eyes like I am at home.  Also, despite being in Crystal Lake, it was thankfully Jason free.  I wish I could say the Mr was able to stand up the whole time but the board we travel with is smaller and therefore less stable so in any kind of chop, he gets chucked around quite a bit.  Most of the time was spent on his rump plastering on a faux smile until we got back to calm waters.  The constant threat of rain also added an element to things.

We always enjoy seeing the Cherry Bowl drive in is still up and running.  We only wish we were there during the time of year it's showing movies.  I think we always miss it by a week.

Birthday boy's tradition is the roasted turkey dinner from the Cherry Hut.  Of course when we went to Crystal Lake across from the restaurant on the beach side, it was now a perfect, beautiful day.  Pffft.

We went back to Frankfort to walk to the lighthouse.  I admit I was quite bummed that I wasn't able to get a pic of the Mr paddleboarding just to the left with the lighthouse in the background.  Another year.

We hit up some of our favorite antique stores and were happy to see some old school Avon faves.  On the left was the pattern on the carrying case just like my mom used to have when I was four.  She had the lipstick samples and the perfume pads.  It was a little girl's dream.  Then the Mr's first cologne came from Avon in this sassy car.  He asked his grandpa when he was a kid what kind of car his cologne came in.  :-)

No trip to TC is complete without stopping by Gallagher's to visit with the barnyard animals.

We also stopped by the Traverse City Commons I think it's called.  It's the old state hospital that's been converted to shops, restaurants and condos.  I got an awesome 1920's cocoa tin at a vintage store there.

We also love visiting Leland (aka Fishtown) It's always super windy but that day was probably the coldest and windiest but we didn't mind.

Next door is Van's Beach and there always seems a young buck dressed in a long wetsuit ready to catch some bodacious waves.

We made one of my dreams come true which was paddling West Bay by Old Mission Lighthouse.  The water is so clear and the water in front of the lighthouse actually wasn't there 3 years ago when we were there so it was quite shallow for our paddle.

You can kind of see just how shallow it is on the lower left.  The Mr was unable to stand up because it was constantly getting caught, too many rocks to hit his noggin on so he ended up kayaking with 50 degree water flooding his crotch.  You can imagine how happy he looked whilst doing that.  We had a goal to paddle to a sandbar.  We made it (the lower right is how wide the strip was in the middle of the bay).  The Mr started shivering uncontrollably so we tried to warm him up and I gave him the dry towel I had but it was wet by the time he was done and after 20 minutes it was time to head back.  I really enjoyed it, he'll tell you he did but a wife knows better.

We had to stop at one of our favorite overlooks by the Grand Traverse Winery.

I loved seeing all of the homes that really decorated for Halloween/Fall.  For some reason we don't seem to do that in our neck of the woods anymore so seeing so many people in the spirit was refreshing.  This place was my favorite and yes, those big ass pumpkins were in their front yard!

We always have to swing by Sleeping Bear Dunes.

 Oh, I had to share this too.  This was the view I had whilst in the lavatory in the condo.  Two fat tourist pieces which is interesting enough but then if you look closer, you can see the hangers they used give them raging cases of camel toe.

I think it's safe to say we didn't paddle again.  But peak color pops started filling in and watching the waves was nice.

One last stroll around downtown TC.

It was a great week even if a bit on the cold and windy side.  That's the only problem with trying to plan a paddling can have a plan but mother nature can giggle her little butt off at you.

Now we're back, clothes are tighter and we have work to do.  As usual.

What did you guys do this weekend?

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