Thursday, September 28, 2017

What You Do With Now

I recently started a new weight loss program.  Well, not really.  It is a lifestyle change.  Small, little changes that add up.  Focus more on whole foods.  Using natural sweeteners. 

Anyway - I stumbled across a post from 2012 on this website and I wanted to remember the words, so I figured I'd share it here so I always had access to it.

What You Do With Now

It is not your fault. But it is your responsibility.

The choices you have made have brought you to where you are now. And so have other factors that are completely beyond your control.

There's nothing to be gained by blaming yourself for the way your life has unfolded. There's everything to be gained by actively taking full responsibility for the way your life proceeds.

The route you traveled to this point no longer matters, for nothing can be done to change it. What truly matters is what you do with now.

Life is always unpredictable, yet there's something you can count on. The more sincerely and diligently you give yourself to the living of it, the more life will go your way.

In this moment is every possibility. Take responsibility for it all, and bring the best of those possibilities to life.

Copyright c2008 Ralph S. Marston, Jr. All rights reserved for greatday. com

This is something I need to share with my oldest daughter.   She is stuck in the past.  Most of what she dwells on is not her fault, nothing she could have changed.  She is amazing.  She graduate young, and is going to finish college with 2 degrees within 3 1/2 years.  Have I mentioned she is amazing.  She is just one reason I am going on this journey.  

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Back to School = Back on Schedule

While I LOVE summer, I do miss having a schedule and knowing where we'll be each day and what we'll be doing, and more importantly .... what's for dinner !!

I use Plan To Eat to plan my meals as well as get my grocery list together.  

Then I post it so the kids don't ask a gazillion times "What's for dinner tonight?"

Some of these are new recipes, others are recipes I've adapted.   If something strikes me as outstandingly good this year, I'm going to try and make sure I have it either linked here, or I post the recipe.  

This week I just signed up for AMAZON Fresh .... they will be delivering my groceries Monday morning (holiday weekend or I probably could have gotten sooner).   I saved $50 off my $150 order by using FRESH50 in the Promo Box.   I've heard some great things about the delivery service - so I'll give it a shot.  Prices of meat I thought were high, so I may have to hit the grocery store for anything I don't have in the freezer, but I can easily see myself doing a weekly shopping trip on Amazon and then just hitting the butcher, or Shoprite for meats.  

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Sweet and Spicy Shrimps

My family loves shrimp.  Usually I prepare it with scampi, or something equally unhealthy.  This time I tried something new, and it was a hit.  I will certainly make this over again, it was good enough to serve when we have guests.

I used 4 pounds of large shrimp, peeled and cleaned.  I buy the ones that are frozen and cleaned, but still have the tail on.  They are way cheaper than the ones that are totally cleaned, and it took me about 5 minutes to squeeze the tails off all 4 pounds once they were thawed.  I served this over plain white rice, it was a hit.

Take your 4 pounds of cleaned shrimp and marinate in about 1/4 cup of lemon juice, 1/4 cup of flour and 1/4 cup of corn starch.  I put mine in the lemon juice first and gave it a good mix so all the shrimps were in contact with lemon juice, then sprinkled the flour and cornstarch on top and mixed again.  I mixed a few more times while it sat for 15 minutes or so -- while I prepped all the rest of the ingredients.  The originally recipe called for 4 egg whites and salt, not sure why, perhaps because the original recipe was for chicken, not shrimp ?  I skipped both.

After I had all the other ingrediants ready, I pan fried the shrimp (you can do in batches if you don't have a super large pan.  Do not dump the leftover marinade into the pot !! Scoop out the shrimp and discard whatever is left in the bowl.  After the shrimp are nice and pink (Don't over cook!) take them out to a clean bowl, and fry up your onions, garlic and ginger.  I used 1 whole large onion chopped up (kids said I could have cut them smaller, but I was in a hurry), an entire head of garlic crushed, and maybe 2 TBSP of shredded garlic.   Just cook until softened, and then add in some spices.  The original recipe called for Chili powder, I'm not a big fan.  I use roasted red chili paste and sweet chili sauce   My local grocery store carries both.  Amazon has good prices, but only if you purchase 4-6 bottles at a time.   If you check them out though, check out the Spicy Thai Mango sauce .... my grocery store doesn't carry that one, but I love, love, love Mango, so I'll break down and order this one from Amazon, so stay tuned for a new recipe !!

Anyway, I used maybe 2-3 TBS of the paste, and a good 1/4 cup + of the chili sauce, stirred that around until all the onions were good and coated, add a splash of vinegar, let it cook for just a minute, then added tomato sauce (I used a 20 ounce can and a 8 ounce can, because that's what I had)  Then squeeze in some honey.  I used maybe 1/4 cup of honey, tasted it, added a bit more chili paste, and then a bit more honey.  Don't forget the salt.  Once you have it where you like it, add back in the shrimp just until they get reheated - don't cook them.  Serve over rice or noodles.

Next time I make it I'll edit this post and add photos.  The kids were starving - so no photos, and no leftovers :(    Recipe is below - the red ingredients are for the marinade.

Recipe    Serves 6-8

4 lbs shrimp
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup of corn starch
1-2 large onions chopped
1 head garlic
2 TBS of shredded fresh ginger
2 TBS Red Chili Paste
1/4 cup Sweet Chili Sauce
Splash of vinegar
1/4 cup of Honey - Adjust to your liking
Salt if necessary
Oil for pan frying

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

My New Jeep

I've been watching a used 2015 Jeep for about a month or two now.  Finally I decided to take the drive up to test drive.  I received an e-mail early yesterday morning that it was still there.  But it wasn't.  Usually I would have gotten pissed off that I was basically "tricked" into driving an hour away, but after the deal I got on a brand new Jeep, (it had less than 1 mile on it when I first took it for a test drive) I couldn't pass it up.  This will most likely be my forever car.  They are installing running boards on it, so that when I do get old, I'll still be able to get into my Jeep.  The best part .... it's stick shift - and no one else in my house can drive stick !  Now to think of a name for her.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Flying Like the Wind

Anyone that knows me, knows we are a swimming family.  Maybe because I am a Pisces I love the water so much, but I love everything about water, pools, baths, the ocean, the lakes, give me a body of water and I'm jumping in.

My kids all swim too.  At one time or another, they've all competed on a swim team.  Two of them still practice year round, 5-7 times a week.  For 3 hours each practice.  So yes, our life pretty much revolved around swimming.  Until now.

Adam decided out of the blue he was going out for the track and field team at his middle school.  Since I threw both shot and discus in high school, I'm sure we've talked about it, but never did I think I'd have a kid follow in my footsteps.  So a month ago, he went out for the team.  It was right before Spring Break, so I figured I'd buy him a discus so he could practice, seeing as the other kids have already been doing this for 2 years.  I showed him a few pointers, and he went from 40' right before Spring Break to 68' by the time Spring break was over.

This past Tuesday was his first track meet.  I can't tell you how proud I am of him, his first meet, and he won.  He practices after school every day, then most days goes on to swim practice.  Here is his first winning through of 88'1"

Early Garden

There is really nothing I like better than working barefoot in my garden.  It's still pretty cool here at the Jersey shore, especially for May.   Right now Alexa tells me it's only 57*, with a high of 61* and a low of 48*.   Great weather to work outside, but not warm enough for things to really grow.

I do have some things going - my planter that I got from Sam's --- love this, makes having lettuce and herbs right outside my door both accessible and attractive.
As I pull the lettuce or kale out, I can simply replace with smaller plants or seeds.  I keep it really close to the house, so although it does get morning sun, it's in shade for the hottest parts of the day, and that helped all the herbs not to bolt last year.  The only downside is that it doesn't hold much water, so watering every 3rd day or so is necessary.

Also loving the look of my step flowers this year.  
They are quickly growing right up the flower trellises I purchases.  I bought good metal ones that I can use over and over.  I think I need a new bright welcome mat though !  You can also see my little lemon tree up on a stool and there are a few extra tomato plants in containers that didn't fit in the garden.

I have raised beds for a garden here.  Not enough space for a full on fenced garden, but it's enough to keep me happy, and provide some fresh veggies for the family.  
By the time Sham gets home from Columbia, the lettuce will be ready to be picked.  The pepper plants behind them look sad ... so cool out, they'll grow when it gets warmer.  There are 2 more rows of lettuce that should sprout soon, succession planting keeps us in fresh lettuce for about a month.  My garlic is doing wonderful.  I planted a lot of that this year - I'll take more photos later... but if you've never tried fresh garlic - I highly recommend it, you'll hate going back to grocery store garlic after using fresh !

Travels to Columbia

Most know that my husband loves to travel.  He usually travels alone, since the kids are still in school and not old enough to be left alone for 6 weeks at a shot !

Anyway, for the past 4 weeks he's been in Columbia, exactly 2,222 miles away from me (I can still track his iPhone... how cool is that!)   He has another 2 weeks before he travels home.  I have to say that I am ready for him to be home.  We are self employed, so that means when he travels, I get to do my job, his job, and be mom and dad to the kids.

He spent the first few weeks in Bogota with friends, and now is traveling through Bucaramanga.  He went to Columbia last November for 6 weeks, so he knows his way around the country pretty well.  While it might be somewhere I'd consider retiring to, he knows if it's not really close (like walking distance close) to the water, I'm not moving !