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Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Another day in the life

I was up with the crack of the wind outside on Saturday.  Wowza!  Sounded like a tree or two might have fallen across the street.  I was really surprised to see none had.  A few branches, but nothing real serious that I could see.  Trying to beat the dog down the stairs was fun.  She was in a huuuuurrrrr-ry!  I just prayed she'd wait till she was outside to do her thing.  And she did.  Good dog.

While she was outside, I got the dishwasher emptied, straightened a few things in the kitchen and started my daily do's. 
One thing on my list every day is a toy sort.  Why do I sort?  Simple.  Something very overlooked by a huge percentage of parents out there.  I learned when my oldest were little that kids play with things that are all there.  If they don't get sorted, all there isn't happening.  And kids get lost in sorting.  It takes a while to teach that fine art.  And you don't teach with your mouth.  You don't teach with a trash bag.  You don't teach by taking things away or threatening.  You teach by doing.  Get down ON the floor and teach them that everything has a place.  Make it a game if they're there.  And they should be once they're old enough.  Shoot.  I've even got Emmi putting her blocks all in one bin when we pick up together.  It's very possible.  And it takes stress off you allowing for more snuggles and huggles times.
Besides.  Disrespecting toys is wrong.  Toys cost money.  You may not have purchased them, but someone did.  It really gets my knickers in a twist when I see things we have often sacrificed to get someone tossed about, broken, trashed or put out in a garage sale in a state of disrepair. 
Toys are tools for kids too.  Toys should teach.  I would no sooner toss out a set of lincoln logs than I would Tales of Two Cities.  Teach.  In all you do, teach.
A teacher affects eternity;
he can never tell where his influence stops. 
~~Henry Brooks Adams

I am thinking I will make an attempt to go back to MySpace for BFF blogs but planning to keep real blog right here.  And I will copy/paste the BFF blogs to redgage.  If you are on there, I'm sagekidsmom on there.  Friend me. 
My plans are to also starting a family blog here. That will be if anyone cares.  So far, no one has gotten back to me except my brother. Okay.  Maybe I don't need to.  If the want to isn't there now it would be a total waste of time.  I don't have that much time free that I can waste it on doing something no one really cares about.  We'll see.  If March 1st comes and no one has sent me anything, I'm done.  It was good when we used to do the newsletter on aol hometown.  But aol cut that out and it went by the way side.  I've tried a few avenues already but it didn't work.  Oh well.  It was something very important to me, but evidently not to others.  If family connections are lost, it can't be said I didn't try.  But I'm not beatin' a dead horse anymore.
And so ... no.  Crockpot tapioca is NOT a good idea.  At least not for me.  It looked like it would be fine but it is weepy and it burned a little around the edge which sent the flavor throughout the pot.  But I'll eat it.  What can I say.  Tapioca is one of my favorite things and I can't see wasting all those ingredients.  sigh  I'd made my big pot.  My little one is out at camp.
An idea not coupled with action
will never get any bigger
than the brain cell it occupied. 
~~Arnold H. Glasgow
Today's lunch was a nice tossed salad.  I'm finding it pretty easy to stay on this not-a-diet diet.  I'm just paying attention to what I'm eating now.  And it's helping me be sane with choices.  And if I blow it?  Oh well.  Tomorrow is another day.  Actually it only happened once and it was a day filled with having to eat out.  But today, a salad at home...
romaine lettuce mix
carrots, chopped
celery, chopped
cucumber, skinned and chopped
green pepper, sliced and cut small
green onion, sliced
tomato wedges
herb roasted turkey, cut into squares
cojack cheese cubes
And for supper, I made a pasta salad.
tri-color rotini
green onion, sliced thin
green pepper, chopped into little squares
tomatoes, quartered and sliced
celery, chopped small
carrots, sliced small
cucumber, skinned, quartered and sliced
ham slices, cut up
salami slices, cut up
provolone cheese squares
cojack cheese squares
Italian dressing to make it taste awesome
What fine examples of great love our children have.  Our parents and our grandparents were wonderful examples of what love really is.  I don't know how long our grandparents were married.  Cliff and I both lost grandparents when they were young.  But the spouse that lived was true to the love and memory of their husband or wife.  Two did remarry, but even still the love of their first wife remained.  It didn't lessen the love they had for their second wife.  It was expected respect for that first, great love.
Our own parents were both married sixty years or more before our fathers passed away.  And Papa and I have been married since 1972.  Love.  Great, lasting love.
It's struck me several times already this winter, the connections I had with my gramma.  And I tend to get even more sentimental about her and miss her more in the winter time.  She passed away during what I now know was her favorite time of year.  She wasn't one to keep a regular journal, but when my mom passed away and I was going through her things, I came upon a little notebook that she kept.  In it, she never wrote about any other time of year but she did keep a diary of the first snowfall of each year.  It was important to her.  And to her, it was magical.
It must be where I get my love for that white stuff some see as burdensome and ugly.  I will say about this time of year, it does get that way.  Our driveway is a hill and slip sliddin' up and down it is a real challenge.  But who can forget the beauty?
I'm signing off.  I'm tired.  I've been working on getting things going on (I'm sagekidsmom if you're part of it. If not...why not?  You get paid for what you post.  Slow and steady I'm over a quarter already.)  I'm also working on a family website on blogspot.  Family...if you didn't get an author invitation, please let me know.  You must be invited to author and I'm setting it up for now that only authors can read it.  If we have other family and friends to add as readers later, I'll change it to invited persons instead.  Anyhow.  This is all keeping me pretty busy and wearing me out.  Ready to hit the hay...
Hugs, all...
~~Mama Sage
Pictures will be added once this crazy thing lets me.  It's saying the page to add pictures can't be found.  Oh sure.  Whatever!  lol 

Friday, February 11, 2011

Oh BLAST! I've done it again!

Here I am, one more time, doing my catch-up thing.  If you've been around the last 4 1/2 years, you are used to me doing this.  If not, let me apologize, and feel free to click the x up in the corner for this one.  I'll completely understand if you choose not to continue here.  ~~sigh~~ 

And perSNICKLES!   I didn't date these entries I'm working from so I'll not be putting a lot of dates on here.  Oh well.  The dates aren't important to anyone but me I suppose. 

Well here goes it.  I'm off....


Every step counts

I will never be able to be the housewife and mom I used to be.  It's just not in the cards.  Where I used to be an extremely anal housekeeper, now I'm lucky the dust bunnies don't organize and attack.  I used to have every single item in its proper place.  Now...well no.  Nothing is quite that way.  Nothing even has hopes of being that way.

The kids are all grown and gone.  Having kids under foot is not an excuse for me.  I don't work a demanding full time job.  Can't use that one either.  I just don't move as fast and moving is often pretty much out of the question.  Fibromyalgia smacks me down now and then and I just have to deal the best I can.  And I've got bad, bad, bad knees and back.  So, living in a spit spot clean home is a dream of yesteryear, not my hope for the future.

These days, any little thing towards an end counts.  And if I don't do at least one little thing, I can no longer allow myself to get frustrated and punish myself.  I just have to keep plugging.
I honestly think this myfitnesspal thing will be good.  I'm getting the food tracking down.  Once the ice is gone, I'm hoping to start walking by at least walking around my yard and driveway. Now I am beginning to realize that I'm supposed to also track things l do just as a routine.  I'm finding I do move more than I thought, but finding I've also adjusted and know that I can combine and condense.  My second goal will be to walk to my son's house, about three blocks down the way.  But it will have to wait.  For now, I'm happy trying to take one extra step each day. 

I remember a lady I knew back at Brooks AFB and the advice she gave me.  She was bigger than I am now.  She needed to lose a lot.  She couldn't go to a gym or anything so she started walking.  She couldn't afford proper clothes, so she wore her house dress and flip flops.  And she worked one step at a time, Each day another step.  As the body became more able, the weight started slipping off.  It wasn't fast.  It wasn't easy.  And I'm thinking it's exactly how it will be for me.  At least my fingers are crossed and when I close my eyes, that's how I see it happening.  And it will.  I'm sure of it.


Every noble work is at first impossible.
~~Thomas Carlyle


I guess I should be telling you what I'm eating or something.  That's how I started my original blog.  And it worked for me.  But I've decided against that.  I'll just let you know that I started tracking things on Monday the 31st of January and I've only had one day this week that was over in calories from what the program tells me my goal is.  Most days I've had 500 or so calories left.  I decided that I will eat how I normally do for the first month and just track and see what's what.  So far, I know my daily diet is a roller coaster.  Most days I've taken in too much sodium and some days too much fat.  For the most part, I'm surprised and kind of happy with what I'm finding.

Emmi stole my bun!  And I don't have a clue why the pictures don't stay turned when I upload them here.  lol

Today, we went to Five Guys.  I was just in the mood.  I opted to not get a cheeseburger and do a hamburger instead.  I decided bacon was out and you never taste that cheese.  I wanted to eat the fries (we split a regular size and shared with Emerson too) so my thought was to not eat the bun since I wanted those fries.  Where I would have LOVED a huge drink, I got a small one.  I had an open bottle of water in the van anyhow.  No condiments.  I did add mushrooms and onions though.  And I didn't feel deprived.  And I got full.   

Supper was my hot turkey casserole.  It has rice and turkey, onion, celery, water chestnuts all chopped and about half and half mayo and cream of chicken soup.  I did put the croutons on top but only about half the number I usually do.

The only snack I had was my g'night orange juice.  And in the end today, I still have almost 600 calories.


So how 'bout them Packers?

Yes.  I do live next door to Steeler country.  Yes.  And lots of people in these parts are die hard Steeler fans.  Sorry.  I'm not.  Never have been.  Probably never will.  But I understand those of you who are.  I don't follow a team because it wins.  I follow who I like. 

When we were in the service (hubby was a career Air Force man) we rooted for who we could get on TV.  Lots of places that was Atlanta but I never really liked them much.  And for years and years, it was Dallas.  When we moved back home to Ohio, we melded right back in as true to the heart Browns fans.  Yep, win or lose they are our team.  You know someone is a true fan when they still love a losing team.  Guess those who still love the Steelers are true fans too. They do have a lot to be proud of.  I'll give them that.  But I still don't care for the Steelers.

Okay.  There's another reason.  Not just because the Browns and Steelers were rivals for years.  Those Browns up and moved to Baltimore.  They are no longer our Browns.  So rivalry isn't one of my reasons.  Color is.  Yes, color.  I don't LIKE yellow and black.  I like brown and orange. Just as much as I like blue and grey.  I also think green and gold are pretty nifty.  I pick teams by color.  THIS is prettier so THIS should be on top.  Someone asked me how I choose a race horse.  Youdonwannaknow was my answer.  But the secret of my success at horse is the name.  If I like it, it'll win.  Or the owner.  If we know them, I'd bet on them.  Statistics??  Ppp-sshaw!!  LOL

We didn't have a superbowl party at our house.  I played babysitter for the evening.  I missed having a table full of fun leftovers to keep us in lunch for the week.  But Rusty did bring us some sausages and wings after his gathering.  Mmmm.  Good food I didn't even have to cook!  Awesome.


I made a stir fry earlier in the superbowl day.  It's never exactly the same.  I used broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, celery, zucchini, green beans and onion.  Poured in a bit of teriyaki sauce, sprinkled with a little sugar (sauce was very tangy), and stirred in some chopped garlic.  Mmmmm GOOD!


On our way to do running, we got a call from the kids.  One of the little ones needed some tylenol.  Stop.  Change direction.  Pick up a bottle and head to the house.  Hope you feel better, Zach.

Next stop, off to pick up Cliff's prescription for his diabetes medicine.  In case you don't know, Giant Eagle has free antibiotics, free diabetes meds and really cheap things on another list.  Worth checking on.  We dropped off the script at Giant Eagle and went off to do some other errands before picking them up.

Next stop, the Village Discount Thrift store.  GREAT things found there today. It was Monday so one color, yellow, was on sale for fifty cents.  All items in the entire store with a yellow tag.  Orange and yellow were half price too.  So if an item was marked fifty cents, it was a quarter instead.  I spent $33 and came home with

    an activity center walker for $1 
    a little tikes play car .30
    a popping top toy .60
    14 shirts, mostly onsies
    9 pants
    5 one piece suits without feet
    1 sleeper
    1 pretty little warm red coat
    and a scarf I planned to repurpose.  loved the yarn

I wasn't trying to be real picky with brands but ended up with some really great brands.  Children's Place, Carter, Baby Gap, Disney, Okie Dokie, Oshgosh, just to name a few.


REMINDER: WE THE PEOPLE NIGHT Sat. 2/19; 8:00 at Hudson Players, "Have a Nice Day", Kathy Hill Steiner, Tim Steiner, Megan Craven Snyder and Jenny Walmsley Matas are cast members in the musical. Go on-line at or call 330-655-8522 to reserve your tickets ($14). If you can't make it on the 19th, the show runs all weekends in February. Hope to see you there!
Jim Brown posted that on his facebook.  Cliff and I have our tickets. Hoping to see as many friends as we can.  See you there!
We celebrated our daughter-in-law Darlene's birthday Wednesday along with Missy and the babies.  Lunch was at Lake Varsity Diner.  Super place!  I was very impressed. 

Unique things on the menu.  Check it out!!

This was mine.  Grilled chicken breast, two strips of potabella mushroom, alfredo sauce and parmesan cheese.  And neverending fries.  Oh.  And we got hot chocolate!  When the temp is below freezing, the hot chocolate price is the number of degrees.  We paid 17 cents. 

When we got done eating, we went back to the R store.  We'd been there Saturday with Missy and Angel.  That day we met Missy's sister-in-law Kristen and her kids Aiden and Megan for lunch at Carlos Tratoria.  Another great place to eat.  I love discovering new eatin' joints. 


I did reclaim that yarn in that scarf. 

And with it, I made a scarf

I also finished one out of some pretty, sparkly Christmas yarn and am working on a wider one of blues, white and beige.


Vegetable Beef Soup

"Boiling beef" crocked overnight in water, 3 pkgs.

In the morning, I took out the pieces and skimmed the broth of all the fat and slop.  When the beef was cooled enough to handle, I de-boned it and skimmed the broth really, really good.
When I was satisfied all the fat and junk was out, I added
    4 tomato bouillon cubes
    couple slugs of sodium free beef bouillon powder
    fresh green beans cut in 1" pieces
    about a cup or so of chopped carrots
    about a cup of peas
    a chopped onion
    3 potatoes, cubed
    chopped broccoli
    chopped cauliflower


Last night, I made patties out of the bulk bratwurst I got at the R store, 6.99 for 5#.  I made O'Brien potatoes (potatoes, onions and green peppers), but I added green beans to change it up for a more interesting side dish.  I did the bratwurst in the oven on my old, old, old Tupperware raised grill pan.  All the fat dripping were in the pan and not surrounding the meat.


Just saying...

I will be staying here, NOT returning to myspace.  HATE  IT  THERE.  I don't even go there very often to read blogs.  Slow as molasses and frustrating. 


Children grow up way too fast.  Our little Miss Em is stepping and jumping and spinning on one foot.  Too soon.  Don't want to lose these sweet cuddle bugs.


An email I got the other day...
"kindly view my attachment mAssage???" 
lol  I do believe that was S P A M.
And I never subscribed to Sharrod Brown's email newsletter so WHY am I now getting it??


I've checked a few things off my list of dreaded chores. 
Filing -- check
Shredding  -- check

And of course I also did the regular boring chores of the day...
Sweeping -- check
General pick up -- check
Dishes -- check
Planned next two meals -- check check


Cornish Hen Soup
My six quart crockpot get quite a workout when I do these soups.  I put three hen halves in it, covered them with water and crocked it all night. 
This morning, I took out all the pieces then strained the broth.  Straining isn't enough.  I hate greasy soups so I used my Pampered Chef skimmer and skimmed it really, really good.  When the meat was cooled enough to handle, I took it off the bones and put it back in the pot.  To that, I added veggies.  I used frozen this time.  (still on my use-it-up mission)  I added half a bag of mixed veggies (corn, carrots, peas and green beans), some cauliflower I'd frozen, half a bag of green baby limas, and a glob of frozen chopped spinach.  I coarsely chopped an onion and put it in there too.  Then I decided I wanted a deeper taste and put in a few chicken bouillon cubes and a couple veggie bouillon cubes.  Sprinkled in a fairly generous amount of garlic and pepper mix.  And it is a-crockin' away right now and smells heavenly!


So there you have it.  I'm caught up for now.  Hope you made it through!  You're such a loyal friend.  Hugs!!

~~Mama Sage

Friday, February 4, 2011

So how's your day? (includes BFF84)

Birthday celebrations don't always happen the way you want them to.  I always hope to have a party for everyone but it seems the older everyone gets the harder that becomes.  Friday the 28th was actually Cliff's birthday.  The day was just too jam packed and too many people, including him, were working.  So, instead, he and I went to lunch at Rockne's.  I got their gyro salad and boy howdy are their salads HUGE!  His meal there is usually their Mack the Knife burger, but he changed it up and decided on a rueben.  It looked so darn good when he got it.  Kinda wish I'd gotten that. 
We made a quick trip to BJ's and then headed over to pick up Missy.  She was going with us up to get Kennedy.  Quick up, quick back and then to dinner.  Cliff had to work so we had to get him home in time to catch a few zzz's.  I took Kennedy and Missy back to Missy's.  And it was a good day.  I got to talk at least a few minutes to all my kids.  That always makes it a good day.  :-)
By the time I got back home, my feet were hugely swollen and HOT!  I hate that.  I don't have a clue why they do it.  I'm hoping if I drop a bunch of wait it will stop.
I found THE ornament idea for the baby ornaments and decided I would makethemt before bed.  And then I went upstairs and promptly changed my mind.  I looked at what I'd already started and THAT was what they should be.  My tree wasn't coming down until I got them finished and hung for at least a day or two so I stay upstairs in my craft room until they were done.  I took pictures, but they won't upload darn it. Sad.  I'd love to share.
And then...I caught up on my soaps.  I watch all the ABC soaps.  Have since I was a kid.  Used to watch them with my Gramma.
hahahahahaha!!  Gee, was it spam?  Ya THINK?  It said it was "re: presidential compensation fund."  hahahahahahaha
Love is...BFF 84
love is sharing
love is caring
love is bearing
love is pairing
love is not scaring
love is not glaring
love is not tearing
love is rare
love is fair
love's in the air
and always there
On Monday we were finally able to actually celebrate Cliff's birthday with family.  Sadly, significant others couldn't be there and of course our youngest lives out of state, but we did have a super lunch at Applebees with the four that live here and three of the grandgirls. 
I started a program I'm finding to work super for me.  It's called MY FITNESS PAL.  I found the app on my phone and then followed it to the online site too.  And best of all it's free.  You set up a profile of where you are now and where you want to be.  You tell it how much you intend to exercise and it calculates how many calories, etc. you can have to achieve your own goal.  No one tells you what you should be.  No one tells you what you have to do.  YOU are in complete control.  It's just between you and the keyboard. 
When you eat something, you enter it in and it automatically calculates all the info on it and let's you know where you are after with calories and nutrients.  I'm finding that some things I thought would be horrible aren't nearly as bad as some I thought would surely be good for me.  And I'm also finding out I don't consume nearly as many calories, etc. as I thought.  If I could just get my knee and back let me be more active I could probably drop weight a lot easier.  Wish I had time for the pool.  I could cheaply join the fitness center at Cliff's work.
Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.
~~Robert Kennedy
Anyone else watch the Nate show?  I record it and watch it in the evening because it's on the same time as my soaps.  The other day, he had on some super couponing chicks.  These ladies were awesome!  Hundreds in groceries for pennies on the dollar.  Amazing.  They save ALL coupons.  They work them with the store ads.  They gather as many copies of the paper as they are able to find.  One dumpster dives.  One gets them from neighbors and things. 
I like the one girl's coupon system.  I have mine in a file.  Okay but not the most convenient.  She uses clear enveloped pages, like the ones the kids save baseball cards in, and she has them in a loose leaf notebook arranged the way her most shopped store is arranged. 
They reminded me of several things I already know.  Yes.  You can combine a store coupon and a manufacturers coupon.  An advertised sale price can also be combined with a coupon.  Keeping that in mind, if you have a bogo coupon and the store is running a bogo, according to them, you bog2 free.  Never tried that.  Have you?
Don't let what you can't do interfere with what you can do.
Speaking of savings and free, on the news Monday night, they said one local police station offering free super bowl party hosting kits.  In the kit there is a $5 Discount Drug Mart card and two $5 taxi cards.  Now it's F R E E so why aren't people RUNNING to pick one up?  How could they make you prove you are for sure hosting a party and if you are watching and having fun, can't that be considered a party in itself?
Now that was one good meatloaf!  Never make it the same, and tonight, it was good!
  • 3 # ground meat
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped fine
  • 2 carrots, chopped fine
  • 1 medium onion, chopped fine
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 c. rolled oats
  • season salt and garlic pepper to taste
  • 1/4 # swiss cheese, chunked small
  • 1/4# cheddar cheese, chunked small
    Mix it up and plop it in a baking pan.  Bake at 350 forever.  No really about an hour and fifteen minutes.  I served this with parsley new potatoes and steamed green beans.  Yummy!
Oh come now.  A bumpit on a sixty year old with thinning hair?  Looks like a big old hairy wart!
And today.  First the news.  A little 12 year old girl got an unwanted surprise message on a conversation heart.  They said they couldn't say the word on the news but it was slang for a woman's chest.  They showed it and fuzzed the second word.  It said, "nice t_____"  And then came a commercial.  A Kay Jewelers commercial.  And it was a Valentines commercial.  You've seen it.  Where one of them says that those conversation hearts always tell the truth.  What an unfortunate combination of events!
I'm done.  My blog is done.  I did the bills and checkbooks.  The kitchen is done.  The laundry is done.  Man, I'm all fulla victory tonight!!!
We would accomplish many more things if we did not think of them as impossible.
~~Vince Lombardi
Hugs, y'all.
~~Mama Sage