Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Taking the "Pro" (me) Out of Procrastination

Remember my resolution to stop procrastinating?  And my admission that, for non-feminist, procrastination-related reasons, I hadn't changed my last name even though I've been married for over five years?

Yeah.  Totally changed my name.  2012 is off to a great start!

Mr. 31 doesn't really think I should be congratulated, since I should have done this years ago and all.  Blah, blah.

Good thing Panera Bread felt differently.  They had my favorite soup when I stopped there for lunch, which they haven't had the last few times I've been in there.  Guess they felt like congratulating me for tackling my resolutions!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Meet our Horse, I mean, Dog

I never meant to buy a dog.  My life was too busy, we already had cats, blah, blah, blah.  A dog was not even in picture.  Wasn't even a dot in the picture.  Wasn't even a consideration, like, maybe what would make this picture better is a dog. 

Then we took the Padawan to the mall's pet store JUST TO LOOK and maybe, MAYBE, if the Padawan was good, we would get a dog out and play with it.  So, you can probably guess where this story is going.

We chose a dog to play with.  And he was a nightmare.  We put him back fairly quickly and the Padawan was disappointed.  So we decided to play with another dog and, this time, I chose the dog. 

I only have myself to blame.

We chose this one:

He is a Landseer Newfoundland and, at the time, he was going on three months old.  And he was the sweetest dog I'd ever come across.  A little too fond of chewing, but very nice.  We played with him and put him back...very reluctantly.

A few weeks later, we went back.  And he was still there, a little larger, a little more cramped in his tiny crate.  We played with him again, inquired about his price, and laughed in their faces when we heard what it was.  They asked what we would be willing to pay, we told them, and they laughed in our faces.  Then they told us his birthday, which is a date that is very significant to my husband and I...which made it seem like fate.  But fate would have to wait for that price.

Fast forward another week.  Still there, little bigger, little more cramped.  Budged more on the price, but nowhere near ours.

Fast forward another couple of weeks.  I was out of town for work for the evening.  Little did I know that my husband was paying another visit to our friend, who we had already named Bailey.  When he arrived, the pet store people knew what he wanted and offered the dog at our price.  And threw in a collar and leash and food.  I got home and there he was, thirty lbs. of almost five month old puppy.

So, fast forward again, and we have all (barely) survived to Bailey's first birthday.  It has been quite the journey.  We've survived house training, crate training, obedience training, everyday vacuuming, his love of water and mud, his incessant need to eat everything, and, probably as a result of the last thing, a bout with a major case of upset stomach. 

And quite the growth spurt.  Here is our tiny puppy with Mr. 31 at 7 months.  Keep in mind that Mr. 31 is 6'4, so he is not a tiny guy.

And yes, his food dish is on a bulk package of toilet paper.  It made for neater eating until we invested in an actual raised tray for him.

And here is our little puppy about a month ago, again with Mr. 31 for size reference:
It's not a great pic of the dog, but you can get his size.  And he's grown since then.  Yes, we mistakenly bought a small horse when we thought we were getting a dog.  And he grows until he is over two years old.

But we love our newest addition and, even after less than a year, can't imagine life without him.  Although it would be probably be cleaner....and involve far less dog chow.

And for kicks, here's a photo of me and the dog:
And one of him giving me the "hey lady, stop taking my picture and play tug with me" stink eye:

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

There's a Reason I'm Not a Food Blogger

I am terrible at taking pictures of my food.  (And I'm still learning to cook, but that's just a small detail.)

Look back at my food posts.  Most of them do not have pictures of food because I forget to take them.  My thoughts just don't run that way when I'm cooking dinner.  They run more like, "Oh my goodness, how is it 7:30 already?  What is the dog doing?  Ooh, that needs to be stirred.  Ahhh!  The rice is going to burn!  Get it off the heat!  Why won't the dog stay out of the trash?  Okay, plates.  Why won't the dog stop chasing the cat?  Where is Mr. 31?  Didn't I tell him to come eat dinner?  Why is the dog in the trash again??  Oh my word.  Ok, food on the plates.  Here, just take your food because I have to get that dish rag out of the dog's mouth."

After we've eaten dinner is when the thought pops in, "Hey, I really should have taken a picture of that."  And I end up not posting recipes that are good because I totally blanked on taking a picture.  So, my apologies, but I never promised you a food blog.

So, here's a recipe, sans picture, of a meatloaf recipe I tried the other day.  It was super easy and really good.

Easy Meatloaf

1 (10 1/2 oz) can cream of mushroom soup
1 lb. ground beef
1 pouch dry onion soup mix
1/2 cup seasoned bread crumbs
1 egg
1/4 cup water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In large bowl mix 1/2 of the cream of mushroom soup, dry onion soup, ground beef, bread crumbs, and egg. 

In an 11x8 pan, form meat mixture into a 7x4 loaf.  Bake at 350 for 75 minutes.

Spoon off 2 T. of drippings and mix with remaining soup and water in a saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally.  Thin the sauce with additional water if desired.   Serve over the meatloaf.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Happy New Year!!

I have to admit - I really don't like New Year's Eve.  I'm not one to go out and be with a ton of people with noise makers and glasses formed from the numbers of the new year.  You'd be more likely to find me on my couch with my husband, watching Dick Clark, and eating finger foods that we don't normally eat.

BUT.  I love making New Year's resolutions.  The idea of a new start, of saying, "Okay, no more messing about.  Today's the day I become the person I've always wanted to be" is, to me, the mental equivalent of taking a big deep breath and letting it out.  I'm raring to go.  Ready to attack the new year.

And then reality sets in.  Or, rather, I let that mental energy, that "rah, rah, sis-boom-bah" attitude, slip away into oblivion.  It all seems too much.

And I think I've figured out why.  I make too many darn resolutions.  I have a list a mile long.  It's like I feel the great need to be the perfect person RIGHT NOW.  I want to be healthier, a better wife and carer of my home, be better with finances, be better at work, be a better Christian... All of which are worthy goals, but I bog myself down with not being able to do it all right now, that I let it all drop, which isn't the right attitude either. 

So.  I'm going to make three resolutions this year.  They are specific, yet general enough to be applied to any number of situations.  Which will hopefully make me a better - not perfect - person.  And they are - drum roll please:

1.  Stop procrastinating.  I am was a terrible procrastinator.  Like really bad.  Like I got married five years ago and haven't legally changed my name.  And not for any feminist reason.  So, yeah.  I should really stop doing that.  And I should really change my name.

2.  Be more diligent.  Many of the scriptures I've had on my heart recently have dealt with this (2 Peter 1:3-8, Hebrews 11:6).  So, I will be more mindful of my actions (or inaction, if that is the case!) and be diligent about seeking God and about things in my life.

3.  Stop worrying.  I've talked about this before.  It has seemed to rear it's ugly head more and more lately, so I am addressing that.  I say I trust God, but sometimes my mental state does not reflect that!  Although, I must say Resolution 1 will also help with some of that.  I can stop worrying about things because I'll actually have done them!

What are your resolutions?  Do you have a list a mile long or a just a few?

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Menu Plan Monday...on Tuesday


I spent my Columbus Day Monday doing absolutely nothing.  And it was glorious.

Although I did manage to throw dinner in the crockpot, so that counts as something.

Here's the plan for the week, including yesterday.

Monday: French Onion chicken in the slow cooker, butter noodles

Tuesday:  Leftovers from impromptu Mexican feast on Sunday

Wednesday: Chicago Style Pizza Pot Pie, chicken wings, salad

Thursday: The man is on his own.  I'm working

Friday:  Chicken in slow cooker, stuffing, mashed potatoes, green beans

I'll be linking up with Menu Plan Monday at

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Garlic Lime Shrimp

Note: these are not my shrimp.  These shrimp are someone else's from a free photo site.  My shrimp didn't get photographed due to a mental block in remembering to take photographs.
On last week's meal plan, I was supposed to make shrimp sauteed with garlic on Wednesday.  Then Pinterest struck, and I found a recipe for Garlic Lime Shrimp.  So I made that instead.  Close enough.

I made some changes to the recipe according to what I already had in the house, but it turned out great and was super simple!  Will definitely be making this again!

Garlic Lime Shrimp

1/4 cup butter
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 1/2 teaspoons white wine
2 cloves garlic, minced
pinch of chili powder
1 lb. medium shrimp
1 tablespoon dried parsley
salt and pepper, to taste

Melt butter in skillet over medium heat.  Mix in next 4 ingredients.  Saute for 30 seconds.  Add shrimp and saute until opaque in the center, stirring occasionally for about 3 minutes.  Stir in parsley, salt, and pepper.

I'll be linking up to:

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Menu Plan Monday...on Tuesday

Because that's how I'm rolling this week.

So, last week went really well with menu planning.  The only hitch (which wasn't really a hitch) was the unexpected invitation to meet an astronaut.  So, that bumped some meals back, which means some will happen this week instead.

So here we go:

Tuesday: Ox Roast Sandwiches, sweet potato fries, salad

Wednesday: Leftover pasta bake, salad

Thursday: Sort-of-roast slow cooker meal from last week, mashed potatoes, rolls

Friday:  slow cooker chicken w. broccoli and cheese rice bake

Saturday:  homemade pizza, salad (really into salad this week)

I'm linking up with Menu Plan Monday.