Tag Archives: Blogging A to Z

J is for June

Welcome to J!  Yes, I’m still sticking with the Blogging A to Z Challenge even though I’m still without direction.  I guess I’ll just keep poking at it until it’s dead!  I am enjoying it although I feel as though I face each new letter with sheer terror.

J is for June.  I’m not really a Summer person, so that’s not my reason for choosing June.  Summer will be starting, but I hate the whole heat and humidity thing so I really just want to cover my head.

Two good reasons for looking forward to June.  Our grandson will be graduating from high school.  That’s a very exciting thing for him and for us.  After graduation, he’ll be going into the Army.  If you knew this young man, you would have known that this would happen since he was a little boy.  He’s been in the ROTC for the Air Force for the last three years and has been to two leadership boot camps during that time.  We’ll be attending a special award ceremony for him this evening and I’m very excited.  Of course, please don’t talk to me in August when he actually leaves.  But that’s another story altogether.

The other reason I’m looking forward to June comes at the end of the month. You’ve all heard me talking about sorting and packing and working toward a yard sale “some time” this summer.  I just found out that the town wide yard sale will be at the end of June.  It’s great because the woman organizing it always advertises it.  People come armed with a list of all of the sales in town.  People are out and looking so I have a much better chance of getting rid of things that way.

I can sometimes drag my feet if something is coming at some vague time in the future.  I work much better when I have a target.  I’m so excited that I can now put my plan into action.  I’ve been doing well and sorting things out and being very unsentimental about it.  That’s the only real way to get rid of this stuff.

You’ll be hearing lots more about this as the weeks go on.  Hope it doesn’t make you too crazy.  I think I’ve got that covered anyway!  Looking forward to June!!

Happy Thursday!

I is for Instant and WIAW

We’ve come to the letter I and again, there was much hemming and hawing in deciding what word to use.  I decided that Instant would be good since I’m again attempting the very difficult double link up. So food again enters into the discussion.

To start with, don’t forget to stop by to read some of the other blogs participating in the Blogging A to Z Challenge.  Everyone loves when you visit and leave comments.

I’ve picked instant because I’ve always been sort of an instant gratification person.  If I want to watch a TV show, I want to do it Now (Thank goodness for On Demand!) If I want to go somewhere I want to go Now.  If I want to eat something, I want to eat it Now.  There are times that I plan ahead and think things out…You’ve heard me talk endlessly about my crock pot and of course that involves some waiting. But if I plan it out, I can have it NOW as soon as it finishes cooking!  ;-)

I even started Couldn’t Be Quicker on BCDC because I love quick meals.  I haven’t been doing it much lately, but I need to get back to it.

Regarding the whole Instant thing…I’ve often said that if you believe in reincarnation and the fact that we come back life after life in order to learn a particular lesson, my lesson for this life is patience…I need to learn that I can’t always have things the instant I want them.  I need to wait my turn.

Link up number two is the always fun and exciting What I Ate Wednesday.  Hostessed by the lovely Jenn at Peas & Crayons, these folks love if you visit and comment also.  Here we go!

Peas and Crayons

A bit of an odd food week, but that hasn’t stopped me from sharing before!

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The ever popular cottage cheese on caramel rice cakes topped with cinnamon. Tasty lunch when I want something Now!

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A big tossed salad at the local pizzeria when Ralph says let’s go out to lunch the  day before Weight Watchers!

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French toast at the diner…the day After Weight Watchers…of course!

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Apples and bananas for the second course of breakfast one day this week.  Lots of cinnamon of course.  I never thought of cinnamon on bananas before, but it was tasty.

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My new favorite breakfast…egg substitute and egg whites with defrosted frozen spinach cooked in the microwave.  How’s that for a meal, Now?  Topped with some Romano cheese.  Delicious!

So that’s it for me on both sides of the link up madness!  Try to visit some of the other blogs and leave comments.  That’s the only reason we do this! ;-)  Well, that and the instant gratification!

Happy What I Ate Wednesday!

 

H is for Hedgehog

Today I have a plan and I’ve actually known what I was going to use for the letter H since I started the Blogging A to Z Challenge.  I can’t say that about many of the other letters.  I’d better get started before this slips my mind, too.  ;-)

H is for Hedgehog!

I’m not really sure why I am so fascinated by hedgehogs.  They’re spiny and from what I’m told they don’t smell very good if you have them as a pet.  I just think they are so adorable.

I saw one in real life for the first time when we were at Colette’s birthday party in January.   If you’ll look back at that post, you’ll see a photo of my first in person meeting with a hedgehog. That was when I learned that apparently they roam freely in London and there are actually provisions made in case one is injured…bring it to a veterinary hospital and it will be treated.

Since at the current time, I have no home critters to keep me company, I keep thinking about the possibility of a hedgehog.  They’re small and I think pretty well-behaved.  But Ralph says no pets right now.  I keep thinking of bringing in a secret kitten and then saying something to the effect…”It must have gotten in the house on its own, Dear!”  Yeah…that would work.

Until the time that I get to have another pet-a possible hedgehog, I’m comforting myself with these little guys.

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They’re pretty darned cute and they keep me company, usually on the shelf above my computer, as I write each day.  They don’t ask much more than an occasional dusting (a shaking, really…)  and they like looking at me almost as I like looking at them.

Be sure to follow the link to the Blogging A to Z Challenge and read some of the other interesting blogs.  I’ll just bet that there’s another hedgehog in there somewhere!

Happy Tuesday!

G is for…

Ok, I’ve been moving along fairly easily and keeping up with my posts for the Blogging A to Z Challenge.  I feel I’ve done a fairly good job so far.  I’ve been pleased.  Today we get to the letter G.

As I begin today, I really have no idea where I’m going with this which explains why there is an incomplete sentence as the title for this post.

Perhaps I’ll go with Green.

Sounds like an appropriate topic for a vegetarian, right?  Yes, I eat lots of green foods.  They are healthy and filling and…it’s what vegetarians do.  So for that reason it’s a good idea.

I love the green of the Spring.  This year, it seems that we’ve been waiting Forever to get to the green.  I think we might actually be getting there and I for one can’t wait.  I need the Spring to be here and the Winter to be gone.  I’m not that big a fan of Summer heat so in truth if I could combine the green of Spring with the reds and golds of Fall, I would be a happy person.  You can keep Summer and Winter for all I care.

Green also means Go.  A green light means it’s my turn to go and I usually like that.  I’m often frustrated when the light turns green and someone further up in line dawdles before moving ahead.  I’ll have to warn you, if the light turns green and you don’t move out, you’ll probably be on the business end of my horn.

Green is also for money.  I’m not always in search of money, but I’m always in search of getting the most for my money.  I love a deal.  It must be hereditary. My sister, Ele and I are always sharing when we’ve gotten an especially good deal for something.  It makes Ralph crazy.  He doesn’t really appreciate a deal as much as I do.  That’s also why I love yard sales, thrift stores and Goodwill.  I want a deal.  I’ll search through until I find just what I want.  The more I go to them, the better I get at finding things I need.  Much of my house is decorated with thrift store finds and of course, by bookshelves definitely are!

I suppose I could go on and on about Green, but I think I’ll finish right here.  I feel pretty sure that as soon as I finish with this post, I’ll find ten more things that fit my topic.  But for now, I’ll just say…go check out some of the other bloggers participating in the Blogging A to Z Challenge.  You never know what you might find!

Happy Monday!

 

Snapshot Saturday and F is for Fancy

I’m hoping to accomplish a technical marvel today…TWO link ups!  Yes, stand back folks and watch her hang herself!

Seriously, though, I think I can do this and what the heck.  This whole computer/blogging thing is a learning process for me every day anyway.

Snapshot Saturday is hosted by Alyce at At Home With Books.  I enjoy participating in this and seeing everyone’s unique take on the snapshot.

Of course, the Blogging A to Z Challenge continues and today is highlighting the letter F.

I suppose I could cheat and talk about myself.  I thought of that last year and didn’t do it.  Maybe I will Next Year!  We’ll see.

Instead, to go along with my snapshot for the day, the word I’ve chosen is Fancy.

I don’t think I could ever describe myself as a fancy person.  I don’t decorate my home in a fancy manner…well less face it…at the moment, I simply don’t decorate my home!

I don’t think I’m a fancy dresser, although in college I had a bit of a quirky style. Oh, how I wish I had photos of some of the outfits I came up with back then…Those were Fancy!

Overall, I’m fairly simple.  However, I am intrigued by and drawn to fancy things, Victorian style and now Steampunk.  I don’t have any Steampunk for you but I wanted to share a few photos of a wonderful place we visited while I was in Florida.  The Tampa Theatre.

The Tampa Theatre is an incredible movie house built in 1926.  We had the good fortune to tour it while we were there.  Being a real movie buff and lover of old theatres, this was one of the highlights of the trip for me.

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It was a wonderful experience to explore this theatre and learn about its history from our tour guide who was the director of public relations.  She’d only been working there for about 6 months, but she had truly done her homework and knew the place inside and out.

I think I’ve fulfilled my duty to Fancy today with these photos.  Be sure to check out the other Snapshots at At Home with Books and some of the other Blogging A to Z posts too.  I have completed my mission, I can go get my coffee now!

Happy Snapshot Saturday!

E is for Exercise

Eeeeeeeee!! Ok, that was a squeak or a squeal but it just needed to be said because today’s letter in the Blogging A to Z Challenge is the letter E.

It seems that my A to Z this year has heavy (you should excuse the expression) leanings toward Weight Watchers and all things involved with it.  That was not my intention, but you know what…I’ve heard that in writing you should go with what you know.  It makes sense for me to use WW as a framework but I certainly don’t want to bore anyone.  During regular posts I talk a lot about WW but I don’t want to scare away any readers coming here for the first time from the Challenge.  It really is an integral part of my life and I find it hard not to talk about it.  That’s why I originally started to work for Weight Watchers,  I figured that I talked about it all the time, I might as well get paid for doing it.

Maybe this is an indication that I should follow my instincts and start working for them again.  We’ll see where that takes me.

Exercise is one of those things that I think you either love it or hate it.  I think for most people, even when you’re doing it and telling yourself that you love it, you’re really hating it and when you’re telling yourself that you hate it, you’re secretly loving it.

Prior to WW, I was never an exerciser, but then I realized that exercise could enhance my weight loss and now helps me to maintain that loss.  I’d say that my favorite exercise is plain old walking.  I don’t do it as often as I’d like and I know I need to do it more often.  Now that the weather is better on a regular basis, I’m going to try to head out in the mornings every few days.  At the moment, with my other focuses, primarily sorting and packing, I can’t devote time to it every day, but even every other day will be a plus.

My most frequent exercise…my stationary bike.  It’s old and battered and the wheel actually turns because of two very long shoelaces tied together, but it does what it’s supposed to do.  It would be better if there was more resistance, that doesn’t work so well either, but I do it nearly every day.

While I’m on the bike I’m also doing upper body exercise.  I have a 3 pound ball weight that I use.  Over the time I’ve been doing this, I’ve been noticing that my upper body strength has improved.  As a result I keep doing it.

Of course the biggest reason I get on the bike (and please don’t tell the Real Exercisers out there!) is so that I can read.  Yes, I’m an exercise reader.  I love reading on the bike, it makes the time go so much more quickly and I’ll also ride longer if I’m reading.  The fun comes when I’m riding, reading and using my hand weight!  There are times when I drop my book or drop the ball and it rolls away.  Hey, I get more exercise chasing the ball!

It’s also pretty amusing when I decide I want to get some more exercise and I still want to read.  I stand in my bedroom, marching in place, sometimes side to side and reading.  I actually amaze myself with all of this both on the bike and off the bike because it requires a lot of coordination…not something I’m known for.

If I could figure out how to read while I walk outside, maybe I’d get out more!  I’ve got to get something where I can download audio books from the library.  Then I’ll be all set!

Happy Thursday!  I’m off to Exercise!

D is for Determination

I’ve made it to Day 4 of the Blogging A to Z Challenge.  So far so good and I’m feeling calm and ready to continue.  Of course, I have no idea what the rest of the alphabet will be, but I enjoy the feeling of adventure!

D is for Determination.  I’m addressing two topics that I probably talk way too much about…Following the Weight Watchers Program and clearing out this crazy house!

I feel that at the moment, I have the Weight Watchers thing under control as I said on Wednesday.  I am making careful, conscious choices and I’m feeling confident (sounds like I’m back on “C” again!)   But those choices combined with my new-found determination will hopefully keep me on track.

It’s all very much based on my determination to staying healthy. I’m in the frame of mind where I wish I still worked for Weight Watchers.  I loved sharing my enthusiasm and determination for the Program with other members.  I still speak up at my meeting that I attend, but I don’t like to sound like a know it all.  I’m certainly not that, and I realize that I always have something I can learn at a meeting or from another member.  Weight Watchers is very much a co-operative thing.

My other determination is getting things done around the house.  On Tuesday I talked about a new beginning and working hard to go through things.  I committed to at least an hour a day.  Tuesday I put in over an hour going through clothes, sorting and assigning to keep or put in the yard sale bin.

Wednesday, I tackled two dressers in the bedroom that had become catch-alls.  Way more than an hour! Both are cleaned and organized.  I had a nice big bag of trash to go out, which proves that I didn’t need most of what was on the dressers.  I also plan to each day, take whatever I deem as trash goes right to the trash can outside so I can’t change my mind.  I also worked my magic on my bedside table.  Boy, had that accumulated a bunch of stuff!!

I should probably concentrate on one area at a time, for instance-finish the bedroom, then move on.  I may try that and work more in there today or I may go back to the basement to the clothes bins…or I may start somewhere else altogether.  The important thing…I have to keep working.

To accomplish that…I need to leave my cushy little computer chair and get started.

I’m determined to accomplish something today and every day!  How about you?!

Happy Thursday!

C is For Control and WIAW

Today’s Blogging A to Z Challenge takes us to the letter C.

C is for Control.  Throughout my life, I have not always exercised control.  I was out of control in various areas of my life.  The most obvious area was control of food.  It wasn’t until I started with Weight Watchers that I learned to control my food issues.  I had tried and tried, but no program, no fast would help correct my bad habits.  Twenty six years ago this past Saturday (March 30)  I joined Weight Watchers.  I learned so much and today, I know that I am healthier and happier than I would have been if I hadn’t taken that step and gained that control.

I now am an astonishing (to me) 10 pounds under my WW goal.  That’s come mostly from a reinvigorated resolve…yes, control that I’ve developed.  With the help of my friends while I was in Florida, I’m really on track and I’m very happy about it.  The control is mine to use or not to use.  I chose to use it!

Second topic…it’s Wednesday so that means What I Ate Wednesday, the link-up lovingly hostessed by Jenn at Peas & Crayons. Be sure to visit when you leave here and leave some comments.

What I Ate Wednesday GOES GREEN

My food this week should hopefully show that I was in control.  I do have to confess that Saturday night there was an issue with Easter candy, but when I realized I was getting into a dangerous area…I got my control back!  I didn’t take any photos of that…it wasn’t pretty.     :-(

Lunch on Saturday involved a restaurant we hadn’t been to for a while.  I had a black bean and veggie burger which was delicious.

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It came with homemade potato chips which I declined in favor of sweet potato fries.  The little container was cinnamon sugar, which I didn’t use, but the good news was that the fries were not salted.  I could actually taste the sweet potatoes. I only ate a few, but they didn’t go to waste,  I had help from my dining companions.

Easter dinner was at sister Ele’s and So good.

Started with a huge plate of the salad that I brought.

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Topped with black pepper and balsamic vinegar.  Didn’t want to waste the Points on dressing and I like it just as well this way.

Second plate was all veggies.

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Broccoli, corn and cabbage, Yes topped with ketchup, something I learned from Ralph.

Saving the best for last…

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Ele’s always delicious mac n’ cheese.  This looks a lot like my dinner from St. Patrick’s Day.  Well, I like it!!

Finished off with Ele’s home-made Hot Cross buns.

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Very tasty.  Thankfully, None of them came home with us!

In an effort to continue my control, I chopped up lots of carrots and celery to have in the fridge for snacks.

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They also made for a good, quick lunch accompanied by cottage cheese.

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I also put the leftover salad from Sunday to use for dinner.

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In a small skillet, I sautéed some Gardein’s lime chipolte chicken tenders.  Just used cooking spray to cook them.  Added some sunflower and pumpkin seeds to the salad, and then balsamic vinegar again.

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This was filling and delicious.  I’m still working on clearing out my freezer of things that have been in there too long.  These Gardein tenders and some of their beef tips were among my discoveries in there.

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The last two are served with cous cous and veggies. Very good!

Overall, I think I’ve had a pretty good week.  I am feeling in control and that’s important to me.

Be sure to check out some of the other blogs at Blogging A to Z and at Peas & Crayons.  You’ll find lots of interesting things at both and be sure to leave some comments.

Happy What I Ate Wednesday!  Blog a letter today!!

B is for Beginning

In my experience last year with the Blogging A to Z Challenge, the first day was easy, then…Yikes!  I have to do this every day with a new letter?!?  I survived last year and I’m certain I will survive again!

In the Beginning…isn’t that how a lot of stories start?  In my life I’ve had a lot of beginnings.  My problem is, I don’t always follow through to completion.

Oh, Lord…here I go again trying to start at the beginning.  I was very sick for most of March and I Swear, I won’t talk about being sick Any More!  I do feel like this is a new beginning for me.  Feeling better, has me filled with ideas and plans for accomplishing things.  Those of you who have read BCDC for  a  while, know that Ralph and I are trying to get ourselves moved from New Jersey to New Mexico.  It’s not going as quickly or as smoothly as I would like.

I feel as if I am responsible for this, although it really is a shared responsibility.  But I am really in the frame of mind where I feel if I do some work on a project each day, I can accomplish it.

I will begin again.  My plan is simple, I’m shooting for an hour each day.  In that hour, I hope to go through at least one storage bin or box or drawer.  In going through I will sort into keep/yard sale/toss piles. We’ll see how this goes.   I think one of the best ways for me to be successful is to make myself accountable…So along with the A to Z Challenge, you’ll be getting updates on my progress.

I just need to decide where I will begin.  Oh…you want me to tell you now, don’t you.  Oh…Ok!  I have Many bins in my basement with clothes in them.  I don’t wear all of them…I won’t even remember some of them, I’m sure.  My project for today…1 bin…2 if I’m lucky.

So if I plan to begin this monumental project, better get my carcass up and away from this silly computer.

Be sure to stop back each day to see how I’m doing with my projects and how I’m doing with Blogging A to Z.  Hope I can survive them both!!

Happy Tuesday…”C” you tomorrow!  (Lame I know, but I couldn’t resist!)

The A to Z Blogging Challenge~A is for Age

Last April I experienced something very enjoyable.  I didn’t realize it when I started it would be so enjoyable.  As I was living through it, I was at times doubting the enjoyment.  When it was over, I knew I had done the right thing.

That experience was the A to Z Blogging Challenge.  In keeping with my customary wait until the very last-minute personality…I signed up on March 31.  This year I did a little better.  I signed up on March 29.  That’s progress in my mind.   :-)

The A to Z Challenge is simple and pretty much explains itself.  Each day, except Sundays we blog about a letter of the alphabet.  April being a 30 day month, with Sundays off for good behavior, we have just enough letters to fill one day per letter.

Anyone who is a worse procrastinator than I, can go to the link today and sign up! So I’ve placed the gauntlet before you and you can pick it up if you like.  Stand back…here we go!

Early in the challenge and I’m already second guessing myself, but that’s been a life long habit.  It could also be something to do with what I’ve chosen for today’s topic.  My topic is Age.

Oh…did you think I was going to talk about My Age?!  Silly rabbits!  No actually, I am.  I’ve waffled back and forth (something else that I’m known for) about stating my age here.  The waffling will continue until I finish my post and then I still might not say it.

The thing is, that I thought that with Age would come wisdom…isn’t that what they always tell us?  I also thought I might be come more decisive.  I’m better at making decisions, but it still takes thought and time (though sometimes not as much time as in my younger years) when I’m dealing with something important.

I’m fairly certain that some people who haven’t known me throughout my extensive years, feel that this indecisive quality has to do with my current age.  They don’t realize how far I’ve come!

So what are the signs of age?  For each of us I’m sure the signs are an individual thing.  I have worked long and hard for over 20 years to improve my health and now to keep myself healthy and strong.  I exercise, I eat right and I try to stay calm in the face of disaster (that could be every day around here!)

I don’t feel my age, in fact, I feel better every year.  I do have some signs of age.  My hips hurt a lot if I don’t move around enough or if I sit in one position for too long.  That’s to be expected.  My hair isn’t the color it used to be…but only I know that.  Actually, most people probably know that, I’m the only one who sees the evidence of it, when my hair is grown in.  Mascara can work wonders on your sideburns!!

My memory is still pretty good, in fact it’s one of my claims to fame.  I still have people call me to ask me who played a particular part in a particular movie or TV show.  This happens less now that we all have the internet, but as far as my husband is concerned, I’m the original IMDB (Internet Movie Data Base.)

I don’t require a lot of up keep.  After a lengthy and frightening (to me) recent bout with bronchitis, I’m concerned that the duration of that was due to my age.  As the doctor (who is not the one I usually see) said when she looked at my chart, “you don’t get sick very often.”  I don’t and I don’t want this to happen again and I will be even more vigilant to guard my good health.

When I started reading healthy living blogs and then blogging myself, I realized I was so much older than a lot of the bloggers I was reading.  I felt a little out-of-place.  But so many other bloggers and readers of my blog have made me feel welcome and comfortable in the blogging community.  As time goes on and I’ve started reading blogs from other genres (some found through last year’s A to Z Challenge) I realize that I’m not so old after all.

I’ve heard the saying for so many years…Age is Just a Number.  It is if you approach it that way.  As I like to say…I’m older than I ever expected to be.  But you can’t get rid of me that easily.  I plan on continuing this for a long time because I like it!

So if age is just a number, then I chose 40.  That’s when I met my husband, Ralph.  He makes me feel that time stood still at that time.  So why can’t Age stand still as well.

Happy “A” Day!