Tuesday, January 28, 2014

I Love Recipes

I love recipes.  I love to cook.  I love all things FREE!  When I had the chance to combine all three of these AND get my recipe file organized, I jumped on it!

In this wonderful blogging world there are tons of different sites, ones that focus on poetry, mommy blogs, cooking blogs, couponing blogs and blogs that direct you to FREE stuff!

The blog Free Stuff Times is one that I REALLY like.  The person behind the blog lists a wide variety of opportunities for FREE stuff.  Just like the title says.  I've been directed to offers for free magazines, free wine, free events and free books.  So far my favorite FREE direction was for a FREE cookbook!

A couple of months ago the website, Gourmandize was listed on the Free Stuff Times with instructions on getting a FREE cookbook.  I immediately checked it out and fell in love with the site and the offer.  You have to join to site in order to get your free cookbook.  Then you have 90 days to type all your recipes into the website and order your cookbook.

Gourmandize is also a little community for cooks.  There are TONS of recipes on there from everyone.  You can check them out and vote on them, make comments on them and use them for your own enjoyment!  I have had so much fun looking over everyone else's recipes!  When I needed some ideas for a party last month, I went right there!  Not only did I have access to my recipes but to a whole community's!

I spent 90 days picking through, organizing and typing my recipes.  MAN!  Did I have a lot!  Finally I was done typing and proofing and ordered my cookbook.  I couldn't wait for it to come!  Yesterday, it was on my doorstep when I got home!  Oh boy, ho Boy! Packages to open!  Books to caress and drool over!

I ended up with TWO books because I had SO many recipes
I divided them with my FAVORITE always use ones in one book
and my other ones in the other book.
You have the option to BUY your book as well as the free offer

Gourmandize has several options of the cookbook you want.
I chose a hard-cover with spiral binding
There is one recipe per page
The pages are coated so you can wipe them off if they
become a casualty of cooking

The recipes are listed in Alphabetical order.
I don't know if that is my preferred way of having them
but it still works!

My Cookbooks will have the place of honor, right next to my
other favorite kitchen staple.
Thank you Gourmandize for your free offer of a cookbook!  They are works of art!

Head over there now for your free Cookbook!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Play With Me! - WW

This was Tuesday Afternoon with only about 6 inches of snow

Wednesday Afternoon with about 14 inches of snow.  We lost his ball in the snow.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Tuesday Tidbits

Its' snowing!  They are saying we are going to get anywhere from 5-10 inches of the white stuff.  I am going to retreat to my own little world where its 80 and sunny and there is a cute guy in the surf to watch while I read my book. 

Dad's at Chemo today.  Hopefully he will get home before the worst of the snow starts.  ESM is at work and hopefully she will get home safe and sound as well.

If you are in the projected path of this storm, I hope you are safe and sound as well.

I had my first dinner party at the new place.  My parents came over for dinner on Friday and it was a success!  Good food, good family and good laughter filled the house.  Hopefully we will have lots more of those parties.

I'm planning to invite the girls I work with over for a dipping party.  They have been so supportive of me during my time of need.  They have offered advice and listened to me flip flop on making a decision.  I'll post some pictures from that get together.

Its crazy time again!  in TWO weeks, I will be swimming in the Atlantic Ocean for the Delaware Special Olympics.  This will be my 6th year of doing it.  Neicy and I are going to spend the night before down there and do a little partying.  Its going to be a blast!  The only hicup in the plan is that neither Neicy or I have anyone who can stand on the beach and take our pictures.  But the people we team with should have someone who will take them for us. It will all work out.  I can't wait!

Singing has been on winter break since the Holiday concert.  We're supposed to start back tonight and practice for the spring concert.  I'm not holding much hope that we'll start tonight.  But I have next week to look forward to!

Time for me to gather up the grant I'm writing.  They are not going to extend the deadline for weather so I think I will still be spending my afternoon off typing.

Be safe if you are affected by this storm and the coming cold blast!

Friday, January 17, 2014

So Many Benefits

This will be the last post I make on the benefits I've seen since moving, I promise! Next week, I'll start telling you all about the good things happening in my life.

Before I moved I post a list of things I was looking forward to when I moved.  Here are some examples:

One that I am loving is not being woke up in the middle of the night.  The other day I woke up and couldn't figure out what day of the week it was.  I had slept THAT good.

Green veggies in the house has made for some very yummy dinners.

Me and Jaxon have been singing while we make dinner most nights.  I love music!

There is a benefit to moving that I didn't anticipate happening.

Jakes is spending more time with me than he was!  I've been in the new place for three weekends and he's been with me for all three weekends.  He actually spent a WHOLE weekend with me, which he hasn't done in a very long time.

This week, he's off school and is with me for those days off too!  He's spending FIVE consecutive days with me, even though I have to work!  When he asked me to come and get him, I wanted to cry tears of joy.

I am SO happy that he loves being at the new place and it shows that he does love me, even when we fight.

If there were no other reasons for moving, this one is the BEST.  Having my son with me as much as he wants is paramount to me and my mental health.

Thursday, January 16, 2014


With the move I think Jaxon has had to make the biggest adjustment.  He doesn't have a lap to sit on all day long.  He doesn't get to go out and chase the ball several times a day.  BUT even with all the things that are changing for him, he is still the best doggie ever.

He doesn't like mornings

The first week or so, I walked him on a leash. I wanted him to know where his boundaries were and we are now living on a very busy road.  Can't have him dashing out into traffic.  He graduated to walking with me carrying the leash.  Now I can put him out for potty without even leaving my deck and he doesn't wander too far.

I've been going home at lunchtime to walk him until he gets used to being left alone during the day.  I hate to leave him for so long but it can't be helped.  Also with going home at lunchtime, I can throw the ball for him.  And he LOVES to chase it.

Jaxon does love it when Jakes comes home.
As far as adjusting to the new place, he was afraid of the boxes in the kitchen but they are gone now.  He is still figuring out how to chase the ball in the house.  There a no long hallways but lots of little places a ball can hide.  He loves trying to dig it out of the corner, its in his breed to dig.

As the weather improves and there is more daylight after work, Jaxon will get more exercise and loving.  With all that has happened in the past month, the fact that he hasn't used the house as a bathroom or chewed up the furniture makes me proud of him for his ability to be flexible.

I love my Jaxon!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014


My Regular Readers know that ESM is my Evil StepMother who is in NO way evil.  She is the most loving step mother and grandmother a person could have.  She named herself ESM as a joke.  But it stuck.

This past weekend was her b-day and I got together with them to celebrate.

At dinner

Jaxon and I stopped over the house and he gave her lots of kisses which she loves.  Then we piled in the car for dinner.  We went someplace new and it was yummy for me and ESM.  Daddy wasn't thrilled with his meal but the wonderful waitress took his dinner off the bill.  Lots of giggling and sharing of stories made for a wonderful dinner get together.

Wheel chair buddies

Happy Birthday ESM!  Love you!

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Letting Go and Moving On

As I've posted in the past, I've moved. When I moved, I also severed all ties to AZ.  His lifestyle and morals are so far from mine that there was no middle ground to meet on.  There was no respect for each other, and there certainly wasn't love in the relationship.

But I am still MAD as HELL at him for putting me through all that he did while we were sharing the house and for making me have to move and change my life.  I am so mad that I want Karma to come down and give him what I consider "Just Desserts".

I want his life to crash and hit bottom like mine did.  Its only fair, right?

There are so many things that he is doing that are illegal and immoral and all it would take is a couple of phone calls on my part to cause trouble for him.  But is he worth it?  Nope.

If I cause trouble, that opens me up to Karma b*tch-slapp me in the future.  I am trying to remind myself that what comes around, goes around and he will get his come-up-ance in time.  I just am having a hard time leaving it up to the universe.

But its just so hard to let go of that anger that I have at him.  Its not keeping me from living my life, but whenever I have down-time, my mind wanders to revenge and being pissed at him (and myself) for the way I was living my life for so long.

Things take time and even if the relationship sucked BIG time, its still the death of a relationship and I am allowed to grieve for it.  I am grieving for what I thought I was going to get when he moved back here from AZ and wanted to be a couple.  I am grieving for the man who is wasting his life in a stupor because he is afraid to face life sober.

I am grieving for all the time I spent trying to make "it work". 

I am trying to tell myself to move on, to let it go and live the life I am meant to live.  I am unpacking, hanging pictures, enjoying time with my son and friends and parents.  I am finding and loving ME again.

I am trying to move one.  One Day At A Time.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Bloggy Friends

We make friends out here in the bloggy world. Some of our regular readers tend to weave their way into our real lives. One such reader for me is Blogging Mama Andrea.  

We started following each other because our kids were diagnosed with Aspergers.  And the more we shared on our blogs, the more we found we have in common.  We started following each other in Twitter and even made tentative plans to meet In Real Life when she and her family were close by where I live.

Blogging Mama Andrea was instrumental in my latest move.  She had been encouraging me to take the steps long ago, so long that I'm sure she was frustrated by my tortoise-like movement.

While she is taking a break from the blogging world right now, the day I posted that I had moved, she was my first comment applauding my decision.  So, while she and I are not in almost daily contact as we were at one time, she is still there lurking.  And knowing that she is still there makes me happy.

Yesterday when I got home from a trying day at work there was a lovely package sitting on my steps from Blogging Mama Andrea....

Things to curl up on the couch with

Thank you so much Andrea!  I love it!  And YOU!  Its the perfect housewarming present!

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Christmas Spoilage - WW

I'm so SPOILED!  

The Parents gave me this, plus so much more for Christmas

I've already made several batches of Cinnabuns with it.


Friday, January 3, 2014

Friends Who Are Nominated for SaintHood

I've been friends with Janet and Phil since High School, when they were together in high school and I have been friends with them separately as well.  Janet did my hair for my wedding.  Phil was good friends with my ex.  There was a time when I lost contact with both of them, but as with true friends, when you come back together its like you've never been apart.
Phil and Janet
Janet and I have gotten closer since I've moved to the same town where she's lived.  We've made yummy chocolate and caramel snacks together, tried new cider vodka drinks, and of course went shopping together at Christmas time.  She and Phil have jet ski's that we've taken out on the river this summer.  

When it came time for me to move to a second floor apartment, I knew I would need strong helpers. Janet's son is 23 and has lots of strong friends.  Janet volunteered Jason to help me.  Don't ya love how that happens?

Janet and Phil also have a truck, trailer and van!  Janet volunteered to bring the truck, trailer and van to help along with my Daddy's truck and trailer.  Janet also volunteered Phil's help.  giggle.
Phil and Me on New Years Eve
On Saturday, we all showed up at the house to start loading my stuff.  The original plan was to get most of the stuff and leave the heavy lifting for Jason and his friends on Sunday.  But since the weather was looking like crap (up to an inch of rain), Phil decided to see how much we could get done on Saturday.

Phil and Jakes teamed up for the heavier lifting and moving of furniture while Janet and I focused on boxes and packing anything that was left.  By 1:30, we had the house emptied and all the vehicles full.  Anything that didn't fit in the vehicles this trip was left on the back deck at the house until we could empty the vehicles and come back.

After lunch, we headed back to the house for the final stuff.  Jakes and Phil muscled my fridge up the steps, along with everything else.  They really made a good team, Jakes and Phil.
Janet and me New Years Eve

When we finished unloading the second time, Jakes had to go home so Phil and Janet helped me to set up Jakes bed and put the doors on the fridge.  They finally left around 6:30 to head home.  

It was a long day and I love them for all their help!  They did so much more than I expected.  I hereby nominate them for SaintHood for going above and beyond the call of duty!

I love you guys and ANYTIME you need ANYTHING, I'm there!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

The New Place

I am in the New Place and I love it.  The Holiday Season wasn't very relaxing for me but there were things to be done.  I had to get out of the house with AZ.

The police are watching the house and I cannot afford to be caught up in their illegal doings.

Jakes, Jaxon and I spent Christmas at my parents house and they loved having us.  It was lovely to be in a place where I didn't have to worry about my stuff being stolen or my privacy being invaded.  I didn't have to worry that the police would be breaking down the door to arrest whoever was in the house.  Jakes didn't have to share the bedroom with a 45 year old man, who was drunk all the time.

Yes, things at the house are THAT bad. But I am gone from there and am moving on.

The weekend before Christmas, Neicy and I went into the new place and painted all the walls and ceilings.  I love Neicy!  All I had to do was say, "let's paint" and she was there.  She lifted a 5 gallon can of paint off the counter and pulled a muscle in her back.  She still painted with me though.  We finished up the walls and ceiling on Sunday and I went back to paint the trim on Monday.  I did a little bit of stuff at the new place on Tuesday but tried to relax until it was time to get Jakes for Christmas.

We celebrated Christmas and I didn't go to the new place AT ALL on Christmas day.  Thursday, Jakes cleaned the carpets and I cleaned the kitchen and bathroom in the new place.  The landlord finished up everything necessary for the CO inspection.

Here are some pictures of the new place before I moved in.

My deck.  I'm getting a table and chairs to put my umbrella up. Its going to be a wonderful place for dinner and sunsets.

The Kitchen.  Its a good size and very functional.

Bathroom.  I love the shelves in the shower! I've filled them already. :)

The Living Room is also a good size.  I'm still experimenting with how to position the furniture.
My Bedroom.  I love the windows!

That's the new place!  There are still boxes every where and I have some projects that need to be done.  Tonight I will be finding Jakes's bed so he can sleep in it this weekend.

Tomorrow's post: Friends Who Are Nominated for Sainthood!