Friday, October 29, 2021

What I'm Reading This Week #44

It's the last Friday of October which means if you aren't ready for Christmas, you'd better just stay off any form of entertainment or social media because come Monday, all bets are off!  I don't know that I'm ready just yet to decorate for Christmas but who knows if that'll change sooner than usual.  I'm still in the full throes of Fall cozy since the temps have only been consistently Fall like for two weeks.  Obviously, Sunday I had to make sure we had some grilled cheese (TJ's Raclette is back if anyone wants an elevated, gooey grilled cheese!) and soup to celebrate what appears to be cooler weather to stay.

What else were we putting in our pie holes?

Monday was BBQ Shrimp and Jalapeno Grits.

Workout was a walk in the rain around the park until we hit 400 calories.

Tuesday I realized it'd been a minute since we had Turkey Taco Tuesday.

Workout was another walk since we only had another day or two of spotty sun before rain took over.

Wednesday was glazed orange roughy over brown rice with broccoli.

Workout was Grow with Jo walking workout.

Thursday was cauliflower taco salad.

Workout was total body strength training.

Now, let's work into...

Never Store This Popular Kind of Oil in Your Pantry, Experts Warn  (Whoops!  Cue me running to the pantry to move it to the fridge)

The 9 Essential Amino Acids To Lower Blood Sugar, Build Muscle & Reduce Stress  (also potentially improve dementia symptoms or stop them from forming in the first place.)

Best 31 Hygge Hobbies to Try in 2021  (I'm on it!  I always think I want to learn to crochet but never do.)

The 15 Grossest Diet Foods in History Slideshow  (Some of these are truly horrifying (especially #3) but I must say, the Mr and I LOVED the Pringles made with Olestra.  They tasted exactly the same and we never had any of the anal leakage they spoke of so we were bummed when they pulled them.)

Why Are People So Rude Right Now  (This all makes perfect sense and it's taking a gargantuan effort not to become one of them some days.  It's part of the reason we don't go out much anymore.  I pray we all recover mentally if this is ever over.)

Only Boomers & Gen-Xers will remember these Saturday morning shows  (1-5 please which made my heart squishy.  I haven't heard of the rest of them but I didn't know Gopher had his own show before the Love Boat)

Duran Duran on Their Hedonistic Eighties Days and Whether They Were as Hot as Journey (Oy, never could stand the interviewer but a good watch for a Durannie.)

It's spooky weekend!  YAY!  I don't know why I'm saying yay, we don't get trick or treaters and aren't decorated outside.  (But just in case, I bought a 6 pack of full sized Hershey bars so even if we don't get any we'll have s'mores on lock.)  We'll get in the last of our Halloween movies and probably give the Great Pumpkin a second watch with our little bag of Halloween candy.  Other than that, nothing on the agenda that I'm aware of.

Got any plans for Halloween weekend?

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Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Halloween Candy Hump Day Poll


OMG, Good & Plenty or those God awful circus peanuts.  💀

(My faves on here though are Smarties, PB Kisses and Candy Corn.  The rest would go straight in the trash)

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Monday, October 25, 2021

Falling for Fall Weekend Recap

Hey there, hi there, ho there beautiful (and handsome) people!  I hope you had a good weekend that you are sad it's over because it was so good.    A few days before the weekend, I knew I was going to tell the Mr to hop in the car- we were driving north because I'm pretty sure in our area we are going to go from green to brown with no in-between.

We needed a little Fall...right this very minute.


While we didn't frolic in leaves like that good delivered.

There's nothing like getting off of the freeways and taking the back roads.  There's nothing but stress and traffic on the highways and the only kinds of traffic jam I want to encounter anymore is this kind:

I love a cloudy Fall day and seeing the farms and country homes we'll never own so I can dream a little.

I spent 3 non-consecutive years living either on a farm or in the country at very impressionable years of my little life.  Kindergarten and third/fourth grade.  Kindergarten was on my great grandma's farm where I climbed on tractors, collected eggs, picked apples from the backyard orchard, smelled grandma's chicken and dumplins cooking and furiously pressed the foot pedal on her Singer sewing machine as she made my Barbie's and dolls clothes...some of which I still have.  

In our home in the country with a pond out back when my main "childhood" happened, it was riding bikes with my neighbor Pat going on adventures, rolling down the hill toward the pond and making blanket forts with sheets in the living room.

So driving in the country reminds me of those times and brings me peace.

There was an antique mall we quickly hit up but left because it was more crowded than we thought it would be 30 minutes before closing.

We saw a cow train with a little bebe bringing up the caboose.

It was nice to get the heck out of the city, the congestion, the construction and tried to reconnect with our inner children.

How did you spend the weekend?

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Friday, October 22, 2021

What I'm Reading This Week #43

Welcome Friday, we're ready for the weekend.  (Basically, just ready for it not to be a work week.  The Mr has had a lot of work crap going on.)  Yesterday was a glorious rainy day with 60 degrees and I was in my element.  Too bad 3 out of 4 days of the week can't be that way.  Love the smell of wet leaves in the Fall.  Sigh.  

Here's a look at our eats for the week.

Monday we had a Beyond Burger and baked fries.

Workout was a two miler and small upper body strength session.

Tuesday was Grilled General Tso's chicken.

Workout was a 3 miler.

Wednesday was Ian's fish sticks and veggies.

(Forgot to take a pic.  We had salad instead of fries)

Workout was two mile walk in the park.

Thursday was orange roughy, sweet potato gnocchi and veggies.

Workout was strength training.

Now let's muscle into...

‘I’m a Urologist, and This Is Why You Need To Stop Power Peeing’  (I don't do it much but man sometimes you just gotta push a 'lazy pee' along!)

How to Fight Diet Culture at Your Family Dinner Table (It truly is amazing how young kids equate the fat kid as less than or not someone they want to hang out with.  They're watching you mom/dad, grandma/grandpa!)

How to Cope When Waiting for Important News (This came in the nick of time)

A book I'm actually reading at the moment (Very good read for those with chronic pain)

Did food taste better 50 years ago?  (Pretty sure it did.  I can't count how many times we've wanted a culinary time machine back to childhood from a grilled cheese with the plastic wrapped cheese to the homemade pizza in a box and they tasted horrible.  Just once we'd like our super unhealthy, 'do you know what they put in those things!?' taste of childhood!)

Pimp My Ride Actually Kind Of Sucked Behind The Scenes  (Courtesy of the Mr.  Unreal some of the conditions these people had to live with while waiting for their ride.)

Not sure what's going on this weekend.  We had a whole house water filtration system installed Wednesday so we have some stuff to get back in order from that.  I have to say, we're really impressed so far.  We bought this model at Home Depot and a carbon filter which is much better than the one they recommend.  This is how you know you're an get jacked up about water filtration.

Whatchu got planned this weekend, you sassy fockers?

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Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Hump Day Poll: Done It Yet?


We're a month into Fall, have you checked anything off of your Fall to-do list yet?

We went to an apple orchard store to get some Fall food items, and other spots to get apple cider or pumpkin donuts since you get a limited amount of time on those.  We're still waiting on leaf change so we can do a nice long drive to enjoy the color, we've been enjoying outdoor walks much more now that we don't have to worry about flop sweat though I wouldn't mind more cloud cover.  Other than that, not much else.  I suppose I should check with the Mr to see if there's anything else he wants to do before we have 3 days of leaves then they blow off.

How about you?

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Monday, October 18, 2021

Walky Weekend Recap

It was a walking weekend for us.  With the first signs of Fall finally starting to come out weather wise, even our rest day couldn't be contained.  We started things out Friday with a walk around a park when the Mr got off half an hour early and this guy was waving his tail at us.

It was the last of the hotter days (I hope) at 80 degrees but we walked two interconnecting parks which made for a nice change of pace.

Saturday we somehow got a late start but at 62 degrees for a high, I wanted to be out in it especially since our forecast changed from the rain we were supposed to get to sun.  Off to Grandpa's cemetery on the other side of town and enjoyed quiet time and some old statues.

I always love the ones with Celtic knots that looks so intricate.

Sunday we had brunch then decided to walk it off in the historic district.  As you can see, barely a scrap of Fall color to be found.

Kind of irritating about the Fall color but the winds moved in like they knew it was time to blow them off the trees.  Hopefully with them not being ready yet, it means maybe the winds will pass by the time they're ready to show some color?  

We were going to road trip to see Halloween Kills at a drive in but after driving for our walk and lamenting on the stupidity we saw in 25 minutes on the drive back, we felt like the drive in sounded better on paper since we always end up getting annoyed by people.  We decided to save our sanity, grab the cozy blanket and the fancy licorice we got for movie night already and rent it on Peacock Premium since we saw they released it there too.  It was cool how they started the movie so I'd recommend it for anyone who liked the original.

What did you get into this weekend?

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Friday, October 15, 2021

What I'm Reading This Week #42

Guess what I forgot to finish up last night?  Here's the better late than never version of...

How Much Vitamin D Should You Take? Probably More Than You Think  (Make sure you read the part about those who are overweight/obese if that applies to you.  Despite taking a 4000-5000IU supplement, my doc still wasn't happy with my 34 level so I take 8000IU's now at her request to get to a healthier version of normal.)

We Tried 6 Methods for Preventing a Bundt Cake from Sticking to the Pan and the Winner Was Pure Magic  (Because there's truly nothing that will send you over the edge quicker than a bundt cake chunk missing after an hour baking when trying to do the flip.  I've got a fancy loaf pan with pumpkins I will try it with too!)

Home Improvement Tricks That Everyone Should Know  (Ooh definitely trying the oven trick.)

Anthony Michael Hall says he regrets turning down the lead role in 'Ferris Bueller's Day Off'  (I would too if I were him, especially given the movie he made instead.)

Charlie Brown holiday specials: Broadcast times, how to watch  (I'd make a point to watch it on PBS if you can.  If you don't want to be hostage to a conglomerate, buy the DVD's for Halloween, Thanksgiving and of course Christmas.)

I think we're road tripping to the drive in this weekend to see Halloween depending on the weather.  Other than that, I don't know that we have on tap.  All I know is I'm with my honey and that's enough for me!

What are you up to this weekend?

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Thursday, October 14, 2021

Grief for a Loss That Isn't "Yours"


Recently, I got a shocking message from my friend since grade school that her husband was leaving her.  It came somewhat out of left field and during a life change that you wouldn't commit to unless you were solid in your relationship.  We gave her time and she eventually called us to give more details.  There were tears shed by all and we gave her all of the support we could while making sure to listen and not just give her all of the "you should's" that she was already getting from all sides.  I'd be lying if I said we weren't expecting it but I would've said maybe in the first few years of marriage, certainly not when you're tipping toward twenty.  He decided after they made a major life change, did everything necessary to move to another state and got set up in a temporary apartment while waiting to move that he was leaving her.  It came out of left field, no he would not do counseling and she no longer had a say...or a place to live.  She's staying with family but still, nothing like having the rug yanked out from under you when your spouse is too chicken shit to say "hey, I'm not happy.  We need to talk and figure things out."  Whatever that means to either of them.  I am heartbroken for her.  I am devastated at how she must feel like she can't trust anything because I know that feeling of not being able to trust your own judgment.  I want to be there for her but also know she needs to sort through it on her own.  Plenty of people have already given her a zillion pieces of nasty advice and we'll say the soon-to-be ex got a verbal beat down by his father in law that was MUCH deserved but apparently upset him.  (Pardon me while I do NOT feel sorry for that.)  

What I did not expect to feel was anger at him for reasons other than what he put her through.  I am angry that even while he got to be a little less than fun to be around,  we still considered him a friend.  We have good memories with him and he made us laugh.  My feet are resting on the floor he installed.  He is a major horror fan and the Mr and I have had so many things recently that we've said or thought "oh, send that to Joe" and then we remember and mutter "asshole."  It's the worst kind of loss for her obviously but it's also a loss for everyone who knew them as a couple too.  So many people are angry at him and I know it isn't just because of how wrong he did her but because they trusted him and let him into their hearts and also feel betrayed to a degree.  I think people feel selfish when they admit that they too feel a loss when someone is no longer in their lives through extenuating circumstances whether divorce, disease or death that isn't a first degree person.  (Spouse, parent/child, sibling, etc)  The Mr lost his 'work mom' a few months ago but I'd only met her once or twice in person.  I found myself crying on and off for over a week or two.  She was a good person, was like a mom figure to look after him in his previous job and we had a 'Mr sending messages back and forth to each other on occasion' relationship.  It surprised me how much loss I felt with her passing.  I felt stupid sometimes for bursting into tears when I thought of her.  Same with my aunt and uncle divorcing a few weeks after my grandma's funeral.  Actually, her funeral was the last time I saw him and then suddenly, after 40 years, he was no longer part of the family.  Because we're not in that familial grapevine, it came out of left field for me.  Again, after that long and given how much help he was in caregiving with Grandma, there was no reason for me to suspect he was on the way out.  He was a good man, one of the more pleasant people to gab with when he decided to talk to others and we all made the comment we would've rather dropped the aunt than him.  (I know, rude but she can be a bit much sometimes.)  He's been around for as long as I can remember, now he's gone and that's that.  You can tell she gets annoyed when he's brought up because she sees the rest of us light up and ask how he is.  He loved some of the food I made for the holidays and I always want to make him an extra one and send home leftovers with my cousin who usually sees him that night or the next day.  

It's not easy to lose people regardless of circumstances but it can be especially jarring when it comes out of nowhere.  Acknowledging that someone else's most intense loss also affects you too isn't trying to put the spotlight on you, it's saying "that person meant something to me."  Even if you weren't close with them, even if you didn't see them all of the time, it's still a grieving that happens and you should talk to someone who has the same feelings by being in the same boat or 'your person' who you know can empathize with your feelings.  I know plenty of people who make others losses about them and that's not what this is.  I came across his picture of all of us in better times and so many emotions flooded me.  I wish he had been the person he promised to be to her.  I wish when the offer for help was given many times over in the past that he would've taken people up on it.  I wish he'd been human enough to pull the plug on "years" of unhappiness before they sold the house she built with pride long before he ever came along.   Wishing doesn't make it come true.  I can only hope something better is waiting for her and she can pick up the pieces.  

Remember should you find yourself feeling the same way after what is viewed as 'someone else's tragedy', that it doesn't make you selfish, it makes you human.  It means you cared and there will be a little part of you that grieves what was...even if you want to bitch slap the person.


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Wednesday, October 13, 2021

Hump Day Poll: Outdoor Appeal


Your outdoor décor right now this year:

Autumn theme
Do dead flowers count?

Do dead flowers count?  Sadly, this year I have nothing up.  My vintage Beistle paper decorations got pretty fried in the sun last year so I need to dig them out and put them on the inside of the door for the Mr and I to enjoy.  We never get any trick or treaters, no one is coming over and it's still 80+ friggin' degrees, so why bother?  I'll just wait for Christmas to make an impression.

How about you?  Halloween-ish. Autumn theme, or do dead flowers count?

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Monday, October 11, 2021

Birthday Weekend Weekend Recap

How do all?  It was a nice weekend to celebrate someone special...

After the Mr opened his presents and we had some cake, we went out for a nice, long drive in the country.

It was nice to be out of the house and away from the suburban choke.

Some of us were more chill than others.

We went to an apple orchard and picked up some goodies in the form of jellies, handheld pies to freeze and butter pecan syrup which I hope is as good as it sounds.  

Sunday I woke up with a headache so we lazed around until our Fresh delivery then laundry, a workout and made butternut squash lentil mac and cheese.

Now I'm finishing up while the Mr is losing the battle of the head bob.  Probably gonna pop in a Halloween-ish kind of movie before settling in for some Chateau since season seven is available on Peacock now.

How was your weekend?

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Friday, October 8, 2021

What I'm Reading This Week #41

Aloha saucy beetch.  Aloha to you all as well.  How was your week?  Get a lot done?  I got all of my Christmas presents and stocking stuffers wrapped and at least out of the way.  I wrapped a certain someone's birthday presents.  We talked about the perpetual Groundhog Day we're in, twitched a little and are happy to welcome the weekend.

Let's see what we've been welcoming into our pie holes this week.

Monday was BBQ Pineapple Chicken pizza and veggies.

Workout was a walk in the park.

Tuesday I had a craving for old school fish sticks (Ian's), baked fries and green beans

Wednesday was almond apple stuffed BBQ chicken breast and Brussels.

Thursday was lentil pasta with low sodium marinara and meatless meatballs with a salad.

Ready to work into...

What You Should Know About Walking for Weight Loss  (All good tips!  You don't even need to be outside if you don't want to! )

Are flushable wipes really flushable?  (No.  The answer is no.)

You can finally get the skin-perfecting magic of retinoids without the irritation  (Anyone else use this stuff?  Am I missing out?  I've got a few sun spots I want to get rid of despite rarely going outside without sunscreen.)

Everything I Used to Make My 22-Square-Foot Kitchen Functional  (For those who also have miniscule kitchens.)

Make Your Home Merry and Bright with These DIY Christmas Decorations  (OMG, yes I know it's early but TOO CUTE not to start on right now)

What to Expect When You’re Expecting to Be a Gen X Girl  (I was cracking up at this even though the timeline is off a bit for me but it's ALL true!)

Kindness endures, the flowers are for you  (Oh my heart.  I get so angry when the elderly are discarded and act like they have nothing to contribute.  Ask these people their stories before they're gone.)

Deer Shows Off Her Babies to Dog Friend Every Year  (Oh my goodness!  How adorable this is and that they've been friends for so long!)

The Mr's birthday is next week but we're celebrating this weekend.  He wants his yellow cake with chocolate icing this year instead of me trying to explain a yellow (or marble) cake with half white and half chocolate frosting to the bakery lady.  I don't mind, I think it's comical but they're always like "uh, it'll look ugly" and I say "it's all going to the same place, he doesn't care."  I did that with his 40th birthday cake and I think it always stuck in his head.  But we're going old school this year and I'm sure he's excited.  He's been quite hard to shop for for Christmas and birthday since he's officially reached the age of "I don't need anything and besides we have no room for it."

What's on your agenda this weekend?

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Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Old or New School: Book Edition

We all know that Fall is the season of cozy and there's no better time to cuddle up with a good book...or screen to enjoy the cooler weather when it comes.

When you read a book, are you going old school with a paper copy or new school with a device like a Kindle?

It should be no surprise I prefer old school.  I like the feel of pages turning, the weight of it in my hand, putting in the bookmark or turning down the corner of the page.  How about you?

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Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Green Pepper Steak

I remember the first time I tried my hand at this recipe.  The Mr and I had been dating just over a month and he told me it was his favorite dish.  I had a wok I got the year before for my hope chest that my mom started for me.  I thought I'd give it a go and wing it without a recipe.  I probably dumped a bottle of soy sauce in a pan and Lord knows what else and I remember it was long before I knew about slurries where you mix the cornstarch and water so there are no lumps.  OMG, that thing was a salty, lumpy mess.  I might've added some sugar to balance it out a little and I remember being so embarrassed over the lumps but somehow between that and the heart shaped chocolate cake I baked him, I won his heart forever.  Thankfully, 30 years later, I have a little more experience in Chinese food than I had back then so I made it again for him and thought I'd share with you!

Here's what you'll need:

2 green peppers, cut into strips
1 large onion, cut into strips
12 oz thin sliced or shaved steak
6 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp fresh ginger, peeled and minced
1 tsp red pepper flakes
1/3 cup coconut aminos or low sodium soy sauce
2 tbsp coconut palm sugar
1 1/2 tbsp arrowroot powder or cornstarch
Sesame seeds to garnish

The day before grab a bowl and combine the coconut aminos/soy sauce, sugar, ginger, garlic and red pepper flakes in a bowl, stir and cover to let the flavors come together overnight.

Heat a skillet over medium heat and add half the sesame oil.  Add peppers and onions, toss to coat and cook until onions are translucent.

When the onions and peppers are done, put them in a bowl and set aside.

In a saucepan, boil water and add 4 oz of rice noodles.

Mix the arrowroot/cornstarch in a small bowl with 2 tbsp water to make a slurry and get out your sauce from the fridge and have them ready.

In a skillet, add the rest of the sesame oil and the 12 oz of thin sliced beef which will cook quickly.

Add the slurry to the sauce and mix together then add to the cooked beef.

The sauce will thicken and add the peppers and onion back in and give it all a toss.

Drain the rice noodles and plate up.

Top the noodles with pepper steak and I added some green beans just for fun.

This version is much tastier than my teenage attempt, doesn't have enough sodium to kill a horse and thanks to slurry magic, I didn't have to ask the Mr:


Nutritional info (without noodles):  
Calories 485  Fat 21g  Sat Fat 6g  Sodium 605mg  Carbs 39g  Fiber 4g  Protein 38g

The nutrition data provided with each recipe are estimates and cannot be guaranteed. It should not be used in the treatment of medical conditions and you assume all risk should you choose to prepare the recipe.  Nutrition info calculated using Very Well Fit's nutrition calculator and you are encouraged to enter the exact foods you have on hand for a more accurate count. 

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