Saturday, January 28, 2012

Running Accessories

I have continued with my running (YAY ME) but I have been hard on myself for not improving quite as much I would like.  I did finally get to actually invest in some real running clothes.  I bought this cool pink shirt and some black capri pants that I am hoping will motivate me to run even more. I need running shoes too, but since they are so expensive they are on the waiting list. 

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Dreaming...House Goals and Ideas

Nice rectangular pool with diving board...the room at the end would be way down the road.

Screened porch off the back to lead to the concrete/bricked ares beside pool.
I would love to move my laundry out of the kitchen and to the garage. Then I could turn my laundry nook into a pantry.  See next photo.
This would make my life so much easier on so many levels. 

Add stacked stone to my fireplace.  I don't have a raised hearth, but this look is what I want. 

I need plantation shutters or blinds throughout my house....Can I hear an Amen!
We need an outside storage building for overflow.  The Amish make some really good ones in our area.  
I want to reorient my kitchen to face the den and change to white kitchen cabinets with granite counter tops.  Oh I would have hardwood floors instead.  See next example.
Of Course Pottery Barn furniture to finish it all off!

I don't even know where to begin!  We have got to start making some progress in this house or I am going to scream!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Running 2012

OK so this photo isn't me.  I am not that trim and my stride is no where near that long, but I am still running.  I have managed to only do two runs per week for the last two weeks instead of the 3-4 I want to do.  I started my 12 week program over before the holidays at a faster pace and trying to push myself to move beyond a snail's pace.  Some days I feel like I am doing better, and others like today I don't feel like I am improving at all.  Today I decided to walk on my street and run repeats on the hill that I dread so much.  The hill was brutal and it was freezing so 3 hills is all I got in.  Doesn't sound like much, but my heart and lungs were convinced otherwise.  I am also really trying to pay attention to the fuel that enters my body, again have not lost one red pound.  I am trying to keep my mind focused and see if I can make more progress.  I still have bigger things I want to do, I just have to stay committed and focused.  I admit it is hard in this dreary winter time, but I know every year June rolls around and I realize all the time I wasted.  Hopefully this year I will change my life the way I intend to instead of letting my mind win the battle.  I am strong!  I can do this!  I am also wanting to check into Crossfit or the YMCA as alternatives.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Mexican Stuffed Shells

Photo and recipe from

  • 1 lb. Ground beef browned and drained
  • 12 – 15 large shells cooked according to directions
  • 1 12 ounce jar mild picante sauce
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 8 ounce can tomato sauce
  • 1 4-ounce can chopped chilies
  • 1 cup Monterrey Jack cheese shredded ( I use more)
  • 1 2.8 ounce can Durkee French Fried onions
You will need 2 mixing bowls.  In one bowl combine picante sauce, water,  and tomato sauce.  In another bowl place the browned ground meat adding 1/2 cup of the mixed sauce, along with the chilies, 1/2 cup of cheese, and 1/2 can of the onions.  Mix well.  Pour half the sauce in the bottom of a 9 x 13 inch oven proof casserole dish.  Stuff shell with the ground beef mixture.  Arrange shells in the baking dish.  Pour the remaining sauce over shells.  Bake covered for about 30 minutes at 350 degrees.  Top with the remaining onions and cheese and cook uncovered for about 5 minutes. 

Sweet Rolls

So easy and simple, yet so good!!

2 cans crescent rolls
8 oz. cream cheese
1 stick real butter
1 cup sugar

Spray 9X13 pan with spray and preheat over per directions on crescent rolls.  Unroll first can and press seams together.  Microwave (yes microwave) cream cheese for about a minute to melt/soften it then stir the cup of sugar into it until well mixed.   Spread this goodness onto crescent rolls.   Top with second can of crescent rolls and pinch seams as well as possible.  Melt stick of butter and pour evenly over top.  Sprinkle generously with cinnamon and bake according to crescent roll directions.  Enjoy!

The picture does not do them justice.  Cut into squares to serve.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Well here we are...

How can it possibly be 2012?   I don't know if I was ready.  I am not one to make resolutions, but I am continually in a state of making goals and revamping them.  I will say 2011 in hindsight ended up being a year with many challenges.
*  I changed jobs in nursing to one where I feel very fulfilled and it also has a scheduled that allows me to be a better mom.  It still requires complex scheduling and help from others, but ultimately I have been less tired and overextended which makes for a better me.  Learning a new job and new way of doing things have been a challenge.  Thankfully I finally am starting to feel settled. 
*  I have been very conflicted about returning to school and even though I keep wanting to God seems to have other purposes for me and it hasn't panned out yet. 
* I decided on a dare really from my husband to take up running again.  He actually started with me and lasted a whole three weeks.  I really think he just tapped into my competitive nature and got me started and he really knew once I lit the fire I would go.  I am still not fast, but I completed my first 5k after not running in many, many years.  I started around Labor day and have run 3 days per week most every single week since then.  I actually started my 12 week program over at a faster speed to try to improve.  I really, really want to completed a marathon.  Shhh...don't tell anybody, but I really think I can do it.  I have my mind set on a target date/time and I will keep it posted if if comes up in the near decade.  I think running is a difficult thing to do even when done slowly.  I have been somewhat disappointed that I have not lost "one red pound" as I like to say, but really that is my own fault because I have not changed my eating habits - at all.   I know if I get serious about doing distance running I must change my fuel.  That just may work if i start really training.  Time will tell.
* My FIL and very dear neighbor had bypass surgery in the fall.  Reality of taking care of the importance of taking care of my health.
* This paying off debt thing is really hard.  We have really been on lock down and done without so many things.  I am hoping 2012 is the year of a positive turn around because I am so very tired of not having any money to do anything.  We are blessed to have a roof over our head and electricity, but some time you work and work and want to just do more than get by.  I hope this will be our year.  We have sacrificed for a long time to get here.
*Family is the ultimate most important thing on earth.  I want to keep making memories and cherish time together.
* My spiritual life is a bit of a work in progress.  I am able to do my devotions of most days and pray continually, but I want us to have a permanent church home.  I pray we will find our place and build relationships and be involved in more activities.  If you read this please consider praying for all these things for our family.
* I tried to take even the smallest opportunities to take care of myself.  It is hard for me.  I like to take care of others and honestly I am pretty low maintenance and have low self confidence.  I have tried to paint my nails more.  It seems like a little thing, but I am a nervous nellie and I will pick and pick if they are not painted and I have never had long nails.  Simple things like this and burning candles that I enjoy are just a couple of ways I have tried to take care of myself with a limited budget.
*Blogging has not been as easy for me.  I have been in a rut with meals and trying to be healthy, quick, cost effective, and pleasing to everyone is hard.  I have had hard time trying to manage my time and keeping the house going. I really wish I could hire a housekeeper so I could come home and just be off, but it is as likely as winning the lottery at this point.  My standards have had to be lowered somewhat and hopefully I will improve in this area this year.

I wanted to get my thoughts written down in hopes it will help me establish my goals for 2012.  Wish me luck!

P.S. Remember time FLIES!!!! Make the most of it!!!