Monday, May 20, 2019

End of Semesters

 It's late and I'm tired. My oldest son is graduating from law school this week, so my husband and I drove up to New York to clean out his dorm room. He's the third child I've had to move out of a dorm or an apartment. The end of the semester can be a lot of work!

We'll be going back up as a family for the ceremony, but needed to get everything cleared out so there's room for people in the van.

After graduation, we'll be headed to the beach for a vacation.

Between all the kid-moving and traveling, I've also been finishing up the edits on a new book and preparing a book launch.

Please remind me to pay my electric bill. My poor brain is fried. Just a little.

Speaking of fried minds...

My husband sent this picture to me. I have no idea where it came from, but the accompanying message said the picture is real and has not been photoshopped.

Weird, right?

Here's another weird little tip. While eating lunch outside today, the wind kept being a pain in my buns sweeping my napkin off the table with every gust. I got tired of chasing it. The table we were eating at was metal, so I used a magnet to secure it. Never had to chase it again.

 
Now, back to that picture...

Flip it upside down and it's a reminder that changing how you look at things makes a world of difference. It's all about perspective!



Now, it's time for a nap. 







Monday, May 13, 2019

How to Survive Motherhood


I hope you enjoyed peace, quiet, and adoration on Mother's Day!

But Mothers deserve so much more than just one day off - and probably don't even take the whole day off anyway. A Mother's job is 24-7.

Mothers have the biggest hearts, putting up with sass, cleaning up after messy families, cooking for unappreciative diners, and going above and beyond to make sure the family is happy and healthy, no matter the cost to herself.

So how do we do it? How do Mothers survive motherhood?
  • Stay positive - a million things may go wrong, but experience tells us everything will work out, and the kids latch on to mom looking on the bright side
  • Stay focused - it's easy to get sidetracked with details or things we forgot to get or do on our lengthy chore list. If you prioritize your list, the bigger things will be taken care of, and the rest can be done when there's time (ha ha) or can be moved up in the priority order as needed.
  • Stay flexible - surprises and changes come along all the time--class picnic or baseball game rain-outs, sickness, and forgotten lunches or homework. Expect the unexpected and when it happens, it will be easier to deal with.
  • Stay calm - Freaking out is contagious. When the kids see their mom is calm in a crazy situation, it helps them calm down too: Mom is a Superhero--she can handle ANYTHING!
  • Stay true - Sometimes being a Mom is tough, like when we have to say "No" even when "everyone else is doing it." Stay true to your word, even if you get flack for it, your kids will turn out better and respect you...later!
  • Stay fun - Moms are fun too. Be silly, be unpredictable, tell the kids funny stories about your youth, join them in the fort or for a mom and kids slumber party, let them help you bake...there's a time to be serious and there's a time to play. Enjoy it while it lasts!
  • Stay yourself - we all make mistakes, but we're all awesome anyway. Admit the first, move on, and shine on. You are their idol for life.
It's all worth it!

Wishing you Flowers and Sunshine after a Fresh Spring Rain!

Monday, May 6, 2019

Jo's Roast Beef




Thanks to The Really Real Housewives of America


I like to find easy recipes and then cheat and make them even easier. I found this recipe on Jo's Blog:


Instant Pot Deli-Style Roast Beef
3 1/2 lb eye of round beef roast
1 12 oz bottle beer or red wine (I didn't have beer or wine, so I skipped this step) 
1/2 cup dry English Mustard (I used spicy mustard)
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp kosher salt (I used regular salt)
1 tsp black pepper, coarsely ground (I used whatever was in the shaker)
1 tsp garlic powder (I also added some onion powder)
1 Tbs vegetable oil
1 1/4 cups beef stock (I used a small can)
 1/4 cup Flour 

Now, if you head over to Jo's blog, you can read the steps for what is undoubtedly a better roast, but here's the easier cheater's way:

I cut my beef into chunks and browned in my instant pot seasoning the meat as I browned it with salt and pepper, garlic, and onion. Then I poured the beef broth over it and let cook on one meat cycle in the instant pot without the trivet (I think it was 19 minutes).

When that was done, I used my Pampered Chef Mix and Chop - a handy little kitchen tool that

smashes cooked meat. Once the meat was about the consistency of pulled pork, I added the brown sugar and the spicy brown mustard and cooked for another 10 minutes, adding a quarter cup of water to make sure there was enough broth to allow the pressure cooker to work.

Once that was finished, I mixed in a bit of white flour (about a quarter cup, mixed in water to avoid lumps) setting the pot on saute until the juice was made into a gravy.

I toasted some thick bread and layered it with the meat and it was delicious!









Monday, April 29, 2019

Reuse before you #Recycle Hacks

Spring is another time when many folks hit the Reset button. There's the rebirth of green stuff (no, not money), nature brings new life and animal babies (so cute!), and Lent gives some people the opportunity to give up a vice. It's kind of like New Year's 2.0.

I know there's a great debate about going green, which I will stay out of, but I love finding cool, crafty ways to save money and create stuff. And if it helps save a little of the planet, all the better! This "Blossom" video caught my attention:



Now, I'm here to tell you about a few fails, but also a fun win in my own video...

First, the fails...

So far, the bread fell apart when I tried to clean with it, but I was probably doing it wrong...

The grapefruit cleaning idea is probably better if you use a grapefruit, but I don't like grapefruit, so I used an orange. It worked better than expected, but also fell apart...



The win! Avocados really do make pink. Not as bright as the above, unless you use a ton more avocados and maybe a better process, but... check out how my shirt turned out!


Trying new things is a fun adventure. And getting the most out of items before throwing them away is a win-win!


Monday, April 22, 2019

Living Memories #flowers

Twenty-six years ago, my husband and I bought our first house. We moved in in March and by April, I was ready to get planting. I was shopping with my grandma and went to buy some flower bulbs. She was shocked. You don't buy perennials, my grandmother contended. You get starts  from family and friends. 

That first summer, I got a yucca plant from my mom that she had brought home from the beach. 



Irises from my grandma's farm.



Peonies from my husband's grandma's yard. 



An old fashioned rose bush from my parent's yard that my dad swore was a weed. 


Along with the Tiger Lilies he had me dig up...thinking I'd toss them in the compost pile. 


Almost every flower in my yard tells a story and every spring they poke through the ground and share some memories. 



Monday, April 15, 2019

TAX DAY!!



Money, money, money.

I wish money didn't make the world go around -- it should be love, right?
But love doesn't pay the bills. Don't count on it.
The only 2 things you can count on in life are death and taxes.
I hate the tax man - No taxation without representation!
Stealing from the rich to give to the poor -- if only the middle man didn't grease his own palm.
Because money doesn't grow on trees.
She works hard for the money!
Then brings home the bacon and fries it up in a pan.
Sing for your supper. Everyone wants a piece of the pie. A taste of the good life.
But it's not a piece of cake. Not living on easy street.
Easy money isn't buried treasure. Dig for gold. Put your back into it. Go for broke.
Have to spend money to make money. Make your money work for you. Money in the bank.
A penny saved is a penny earned. Waste not, want not.
Nothing is free.
Nothing but love.
Pass it on.

Got any other tax day/money quips or quotes?
Hope you get a refund and not a taxes due Monopoly card this tax day!


Monday, April 8, 2019

Thrifty Skin Care Tips


Over the years, I've accumulated several cheap and easy skin care tips.

When I was in my teens, my Grandma Rose, who always looked decades younger than her years,  told me to forget face washing with soap and water or even cleanser, unless I had on heavy make-up or was just soaked in dirt or sweat. Simply use a warm wet wash cloth for cleansing.  Seems squeaky clean  isn't really all that good for sensitive facial skin.

Daily moisturizing is also must to keep skin supple- much like keeping a baseball glove oiled to keep it from cracking.

 Sunblock is also a must. I once had a dark spot near my eye that made me look constantly tired. I paid a fortune for fade cream. The woman I bought if from reminded me that sunblock is a whole lot cheaper than the fix-it. Speaking of sun, wear sunglasses that are UV and UVB protected. Not only will it protect your eyes, it will reduce crow's feet that comes from squinting in the sun.

As for pesky dark circles...after my son was born, part of my discharge pack contained hemorrhoid cream.  I didn't need it, but the nurse assured me I was paying for it whether I took it or not, so I may as well take it home and use it when I had dark circles or puffy eyes. She was right. It works! Just be sure to keep it out of the eyes. For redness or pimples, regular cortisone from the dollar store works as well as pricey creams to shrink the swelling and alleviate the redness.

Speaking of acne...my boys would often suffer from it during football season. Clean the inside of the helmet and the chin strap regularly with rubbing alcohol to prevent acne-causing bacteria build-up. And the best acne preventing soap...far better than the all the expensive stuff...is white antibacterial Dial soap. My dad was scheduled for heart surgery and part of the pre-op prep was to bathe in white Dial. I asked the nurse, why white...they make Dial in yellow too. She said the white was less drying, but killed the germs. Since pimples are mostly caused by bacteria, reduce them- reduce the number of pimples.

For all-over softness and healthy skin, reduce the heat during baths and showers. Moisturize immediately after bathing to trap moisture in the skin. To smooth tougher skin, like heels and elbows soft, exfoliate with a wash cloth or pumice stone after soaking in the tub. Apply moisturizer liberally to feet and pull on a pair of socks until it soaks in

Before you go, be sure to share tips and advice. I do enjoy new cheats.




Monday, April 1, 2019

Eat Smarter--Healthy Tips & Mini Recipes!

Before I get into my post, I want to say a big thanks to you guys for leaving such great comments. I love that we can relate to each other and I really appreciate your feedback! I must apologize for not commenting back. Though I have good intentions and start to reply while I'm at work, I never get to finish. And POOF! Another week has gone by! Please know you are appreciated =) Thanks! NO FOOLING TODAY!

Now, on to the eats! Healthy eats, that is...

Does anyone else hate deciding what to make for dinner? With so many food delivery options, eating poorly at home is easier than ever! We used to have to drive-thru to get junky fast food and pizza delivery was bad enough. Now they are all available with to-your-door service! Being the Lazy Housewife, I am sorely tempted to call once in a while, but I have resisted. My sons, on the other hand, love this service. Ugh.

And at the end of the week when there's no food in the house, the temptation is even greater to order in or eat out. What's a woman who's trying to eat healthier to do??

Well, here are some suggestions that I am trying to follow. (with some help from PREVENTION magazine, plus my own tidbits)

  • Healthy Staples -- keep these on hand for quick meals and snacks:
    • Frozen Fruits and Veggies - the first is great for making smoothies or replacing jelly and veg easily liven up pasta or rice (Tara's One Step Further - when fresh berries or bananas are on the verge of turning, cut and bag them up and toss them in the freezer! same for leftover veggies)
    • Quick Cook Grains - quinoa was suggested, but I love having oatmeal on hand - it's great with fruit or in meatloaf
    • Pass the Beans - great source of protein to substitute for meat, and you know they're good for your heart (haha) (Tara's One Step Further - refried beans are perfect for tortillas or make a great dip all on their own)
    • Rotisserie Chicken - this is great fast food, one of my hub's favorites and they suggest turning leftovers into chicken salad which he is a pro at!
  • Healthy Substitutes -- when you're shopping, consider these:
    • Better Bread - whole grain is better for digestion with fiber, plus most have more protein, we found one the whole family likes and won't turn back to plain white bread!
    • Don't Deli Deli - deli meat has a lot of sodium. Can tuna is leaner (Tara's One Step Further - can chicken is a great go to with lower sodium than my tuna! perfect for recipes, chicken salad, and tossed salads **Super easy RECIPE: Rainbow pepper salad - chop red, yellow, and green peppers and toss with a can of chicken** that's it!)
    • Change up your Chips - if you need the salty crunch of chips, reach for tortilla chips made with beans (Tara's One Step Further - I've been munching on Tarot veggie chips lately, they have the taste and crunch to satisfy that craving!)
  • Healthy Superfoods (bonus mini recipes!)-- for a boost after a long, dry winter!
    • Mashed carrots with honey and cinnamon for a healthy, moisturizing glow (Tara's One Step Further - I've been snacking on baby carrots all winter, a great year-round veg!)
    • Sweet potato pancakes - mix mashed with 2 eggs and cinnamon - rich in vitamin A to soften the sting of dry eyes. And I love sweet potato recipes. I'll be trying this soon!
    • Oranges for de-stressing - Another favorite of mine to toss in my lunch bag, love those Clementine "Cuties!"
I think that's enough jam-packed healthy info for now! More fun tips and things to try next time!

Monday, March 25, 2019

Honey Glazed Chicken & Sweet Potatoes #Recipe #chicken #instapotsweetpotatoes


Carter enjoying honey glazed chicken, 
sweet potatoes with cranberries, 
and regular old applesauce from a jar. 

Kid tested and approved! I'm always looking for fast, easy food that all of my guys agree on. This meal is almost a unanimous hit. Not all the boys like sweet potatoes, but they all agree the chicken is seconds-worthy.

For the sweet potatoes:

Peel and slice 3 pounds of sweet potatoes
Melt half stick of butter in the microwave, add 1/4 cup of honey to the melted butter, and mix

Pour over the sweet potatoes and stir.
Add dried cranberries. I added a half cup or more because we like the tart flavor with the sweet.

Add 1/4 cup water. Cook on high pressure for 8 minutes.

I've also cooked these in the oven. Cook covered on 350 degrees for about an hour.



For the chicken:

Sprinkle chicken breast sliced into strips with steak seasoning and allow to marinade a bit. I used Longhorn seasoning. It has a bit of a kick to it without making the chicken too spicy.

Then, I pan-fried the chicken in a bit of oil, until done, then tossed them in a mixing bowl.

Once all the chicken was cooked, I threw a half stick of butter and a quarter cup of honey in the pan and allowed it to come to a boil before removing from the heat and pouring over the chicken and mixing.

It's ready to serve!






If you don't want to run out and buy a bottle of seasoning, here's a knock off recipe:
Long Horn Seasoning Knock Off Recipe


Monday, March 18, 2019

#Anti-Aging Advice

Getting older is a drag! But it doesn't have to be. The best anti-aging advice:

Don't act your age!

Attitude is everything. It takes you farther, lifts or dampens your mood, and affects those around you. If you act youthful, you will feel more youthful. Teaching, I feel younger all day! Until I glimpse myself in the mirror. Ugh. SKIN is where aging shows the most.

So for the physical helpful hints, I turn to medical professionals, online and in magazines... While I was in the airport waiting forever this January, I picked up one of my favorite magazines for healthy advice: PREVENTION. It was packed with great tips.

Here's what Dermatologists said in it about Anti-Aging (Jan 2019, by Michelle Crouch):

  • Sunscreen is #1, a given
  • Retinol, in creams, should be applied nightly. They said it "brightens skin tone, improves brown spots, and makes skin feel smoother."
  • A Gentle Touch - I try to remind myself to do this when I clean my face at night--skin around the eye is the most sensitive. If you rub too hard, "it can stretch out your eyelid skin, causing wrinkles..."
  • Simple Washcloths - handy tools for "light exfoliation"
  • Soap-Free Body Wash - soap can be drying. It removes natural oils, like "detergent gets rid of the oil in a frying pan"
  • Apply while Wet - after shower or cleansing, apply moisturizers "to seal in the water."
  • Neck & Chest - don't forget about that skin! Include it in your skin care regimen.
  • Take a Break - You should create good skin care habits, but also take a break for a few days, especially if your skin seems irritated.
  • Eye Gels & Patches - try them in the morning after a late or sleepless night before putting on makeup to soften lines and diminish puffiness.
  • Avoid: bright lights, loofahs, drinking out of a straw (huh!), a dirty pillowcase
  • Glove Treatment - I do this in the winter when my hands get extremely dry: after soaking my hands, I apply vaseline (they said a rich hand cream works too) and wear vinyl gloves overnight--for feet, use socks.

In the same issue, I read that Cocoa can help slow down the signs of aging. I went out to buy some to try... I'll let you know how it works out!

There were more tips, but I will save them for another post.

So 2 best Anti-Aging Tips: Think Young and Take Care of Your Skin!
Good luck to us!


Monday, March 11, 2019

Cell Phones #Emergencies #Tips

A few month's ago, I was invited to a senior center to sign books. After the signing, the visiting authors were invited to stay for lunch and to sit in on the seminars. One of the seminars offered was lecture from a representative from the FCC discussing cell phone safety. He had several great tips, so I started taking notes to share here!

With spring and summer storms coming, there will inevitably be power outages. For those who have kept landlines, that won't be a problem. But if you're like me and only have a cell phone...here's a few tips for surviving power outages with only a cell phone:
*Keep your phone charged.
*Buy a portable battery charger and keep it charged and ready. (They're small external batteries you can plug your phone into and charge up. They come in many different power amounts. I have both a small one that will do a single charge and a larger one that will charge several times. See what's available on Amazon. .)
*Set phone to battery saver in the phone's settings.
*Email and text people to save battery because phone calls drain the battery faster.
*Remember you can charge your phone in your car. One summer, our electric was out for over a week. We made a lot of trips to the theater for air-conditioned entertainment and charged our electronics as we drove!

Phone bills:
Question all charges. Anything the phone company cannot properly explain, contact the FCC. A common bill problem is "cramming" or charging people for services without authorization.

Lost Phones:
*Report lost and stolen phones to your carrier.
*Know your carrier and how to reach them. My son's phone was stolen and we contacted AT&T and they helped us locate the phone to a specific address. We called our local police and the phone was turned over without a problem. (Do this quickly! Once the SIM card is removed, it's no longer traceable.)
*Wipe your phone. Almost all phones can be remotely cleared so there is no breach of personal information.

Miscellaneous phone tips:

*Back up your pictures: Periodically download picture to your computer.
OR share them to Facebook . You can post albums and pictures either by sharing with friends, or set to private so that only you can see them. Here's a good how-to share privately.
OR use Amazon Prime. If you're a prime member, you can download an app to your phone and computer and pictures will be downloaded to your Amazon account automatically.  

*Don't answer calls from unknown numbers to avoid scammers. Cell phone numbers don't have caller ID like the old line phones did. Set up voicemail and allow all unrecognized numbers to go to voicemail. If they're legitimate calls, they will leave a message and you can call back.

*Password protect your phone. Not only does it stop a thief from getting your private information, if you're ever arrested, it stops you from sharing information with the police too prematurely. ;)




Monday, March 4, 2019

Give a kid a box

Does anyone remember when a box was the greatest thing to play with? I would make all kinds of things out of boxes--from Barbie condos and cars to homes for critters found in the wild! Do kids even do that stuff anymore? Not for long once the growth sprouts in their hands.

I see kids younger and younger playing on devices--I cringe or shake my head every time. I hate seeing the world deteriorate into mindless, addicted zombies. Where has all the real life interaction gone? I really love my school for outlawing phones during the school day and sticking to it! The kids seem much more engaged than at most other schools.

I continue to promote creativity and imagination without technology (as you read this on a screen, ugh). And I still love boxes and use them for all sorts of things. So, here are some non-screen activity ideas for kids with just a box!

  • Large boxes
    • Pretend Vehicles and TVs are good old standards for large boxes.
    • Puppet shows are great fun and imagination stirrers.
    • Forts are always a big hit--and if you don't have enough boxes, use sheets and chairs!
    • We made a Fun House Tunnel once and it was hilarious!
    • Open them up and cut them up for armor or props or sliding down a grassy hill!
    • Paint on them or use them under art projects
    • Large boxes are also great for keeping bigger toys organized

  • Smaller boxes
    • Tissue and shoe boxes are a perfect size for vehicles or furniture for stuffed friends and action figures
    • boxes are great for making up games, like tossing stuff into them or stacking them...
    • Even toy-makers know the value of a box, selling brick-painted boxes for kids to build with. How nice of them--but I say, collect your tissue boxes and you're all set!
      not what I had in mind
      but this is cool!
    • Plant herbs or flowers and watch them grow
    • Make a photo box for grandma
    • I used to make robots with my little guys out of the cardboard and duct tape
    • These boxes are also great for storing the small stuff--from art supplies to happy meal toys
These are just a few suggestions. And though you know you can find tons of ideas and instructional videos online, sometimes sitting down with the kids and brainstorming creativity yourselves is part of the fun. We have to keep trying to balance tech with hands-on. Make those brains work instead of vegging out looking at a screen all day!

I'd love to hear your suggestions, too. Old or new, boxes are fantastic imagination kick-starters!


Monday, February 25, 2019

Easy Bachelor Friendly Meals #Recipes

My son, Caleb ( Boy #1)  is a smart, handsome, eligible bachelor (no, I am not trying to fix him up, however, if there are any nice girls out there around age 24...) Anyhow, Caleb was spending far too much eating out and while he may not worry about his budget, I do worry about his heart plugging up from all the Chinese take out.

I sent him the Really Real Housewives recipe for pico de gallo, which he found was as easy and delicious as the post claims. He only had one complaint: that he wasn't a housewife and thought we should make a blog for young, cool bachelors who prefer to cook with speed dial more than kitchen utensils.

So, here are some easy fixings for lazy days or lazy young bachelors.

Brunch: 
Eggs are now diet friendly. I've always been an egg fan. Fried, scrambled, hard boiled...any way you cook them, they're a cheap, tasty source of vitamins and protein.

To make the plate more interesting...add zesty potatoes.

These ones were made with Tator Tots (or their generic version, the Tator Puff) To make a healthier version, dice whole potatoes, cleaned with skins on.

Tator Tot version: Sprinkle tots with cayenne pepper and garlic salt and bake as directed.
Potato version: Dice a potato and put it in a bowl. Add a tsp. of canola oil (or olive oil), a tsp each of garlic salt and cayenne pepper. Mix and bake in oven until crispy.

Lunch or Dinner:

Easy Fajitas. 

 Using the pico de gallo  idea. I added a packet of dry taco seasoning to strips of beef like a rub. I allowed the mix to absorb into the meat, then added the peppers and onion.

I prepped the mix on aluminum foil, so I could make the foil into a cooking pouch by crimping the edges. (I always place the aluminum pouch on a cookie sheet, because it often leaks juice.)

The result? A fajita mix you could eat over rice or wrap in a tortilla. We wrapped these in low-carb tortillas and made enough to have plenty left over for lunches and snacks.


Snack Time:

And lastly, a quick, healthy snack. When my boys were little, they loved "ants on a log". They still enjoy this sweet, crunchy snack. 
Add peanut butter and raisins to a stalk of celery. It's that easy!
Clean and store the celery in a bowl lined with a 
napkin or paper towel to keep them fresher longer. 



Monday, February 18, 2019

Shrewd #Shopper & #BargainHunter

I love Big Lots and TJ Maxx. They have such great bargains. The trouble is, you have to hunt for the treasure among aisles and piles of merchandise that's not for you. I wish I had more time to shop, but I don't have time for exploration and discovery in the jungles of clothes trees.

When I shop, I usually have a list. I also plan to hit more than one store in the same area to consolidate my trip and save time. Like today, I have to get my oil changed. I also have to go to the mall and get my ring inspected (every six months). While I'm out, I added a few errands in the same area. I've got great coupons for Old Navy and a list of domestics for Target. I like to save time and money!

I also recommend shopping "off-season." You can find the best deals on shoes and clothes when the stores are changing over their merchandise for the upcoming season. Right now (early Feb), winter is out and spring is in! I just got a great pair of boots for $30! (I love shoe shopping! DSW is my fave & Famous Footwear is top two because it's close) I also have a list on my phone of certain items I know I need soon, which helps me focus in the shoe wonderlands! And I never neglect the small Sale sections, where I find most of my bargain treasures!

lunch & girl talk with Sherry Ellis

But once in a while, I make plans to have lunch with a friend and we stroll through stores with no lists or goals. Those kind of shopping trips are necessary. Chatting and sightseeing and possibly finding treasure we didn't know we needed. It's a great adventure and the company is priceless!

What are your favorite stores? How do you shop? Spontaneous or Serious? And where do you find bargains??

Monday, February 11, 2019

Easy Chocolate Treat #snacks #diets


Years ago, I was trying to diet (it's a perpetual goal of mine). My cousin's wedding was coming and I was in the wedding party, so I was committed to losing some weight. So committed, I even swore off chocolate. I totally emptied my house of the stuff. My only supply was a box full of these chalky-tasting chocolate diet drinks that were supposed to abolish cravings.

I did pretty well for a few days. Then one Saturday afternoon, I wanted a Snicker bar. Like seriously. I wanted one bad enough I was tempted to swap weekend pajama wear for real clothes and drive to the store.

But I resisted. I ate a banana. Still wanted the Snicker bar. Drank a choco-chalky diet drink. Still wanted that Snicker bar. Ate another banana. Then a yogurt cup.

Still, I wanted that damned Snicker bar. I was about to mix up yet another choco-chalky drink and my skinny niece, who was spending the day with me, said, "Would you just get a Snicker bar? It's what, 280 calories? So far, you've consumed about 400 calories trying NOT to eat what you're really wanting. Go get the Snicker bar before you gain 10 pounds resisting it."

It was an educational moment. She was right. For me, there is nothing to be gained by trying to stay on a stringent diet. That only leads to binge eating and depression.

I've since learned the smarter way to approach healthy eating is to allow for cravings. And here's a great quick and easy crunchy, chocolatey treat:

Put a few chocolate chips (I prefer dark chocolate; it's health food) on a pretzel, microwave for a minute, top with another pretzel. Delicious.


Monday, February 4, 2019

You Gotta Have #Friends

You definitely gotta have friends!
Liz & Me are great friends who can relate to writing and boys!!
I've been a little down recently with my boys going away -- off on their own again. And I've also been feeling sympathy break-up pains... love stinks! yeah, yeah. So when a friend I haven't talked to in years texted me the other day and requested to buy 2 of my books, it really perked me up. God knew I needed to hear some encouraging words. Instantly, my cloud of self-pity and sadness was lifted.

my awesome friend I haven't see in 9 years!

This is the Barbie I customized for her -- a "mini me" Barbie!

and this is how she posed it when she moved -- haha!
I love and miss my friend!!
There's nothing like a text or call from a friend. Whether far or near, out of the blue or tried and true--kind words from a friend are an instant pick-me-up!

So spread a bit of good news, send a far away friend a funny picture, or invite a closer friend out to lunch or coffee. We could all use a little friendly conversation, any time!


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