Good Morning, Party People!

It’s Wednesday! How are we feeling?

I should so totally be a hype man. Is that a career? This would totally be me:

Anyway, all is rather quiet on the Western front. I’ve been meeting deadlines like a champ. I did yoga yesterday. I’m just trying to live my life.

I seriously have nothing to report. I haven’t been sleeping well, so my mind isn’t being very creatively forthcoming. I’ve mostly been Pinteresting “how to clean a bathroom” and adding things to my Amazon cart.

After being so busy in March, I’m already really digging the slow roll of April. I’m taking time to reflect on myself as a wife, a Christian, a boss, an employee. I’m naturally inclined to do this, but I think it’s so important to pause every once in a while and check in with yourself.

Who are you? How are you presenting yourself to the world? Are you patient, loving, and kind? Are you strong and courageous? Do you love and take care of yourself? Are you pursuing your passion? Are you fulfilling your purpose? Are you following, seeking, and serving? Are you spiritually at peace with your truth?

I think checking in like that just helps keep bigger things in mind. It really doesn’t matter about your chin zit when you’re seeking such high goals that are way beyond yourself.

So I’m digging just kind of reflecting and refocusing. It’s been really nice, if a little painful.

And that’s about all I have to say about that. Or anything. I’m going to grab some more coffee.Y’all have a good day!

Well, hello.

How are you? Feeling as shy as I am? Needing as much coffee as I am? I could not sleep last night. I was plenty tired, but I felt like I tossed and turned all night. What’s that about? Sorry about my absence. It was unplanned. It was also unpoliced, hence why it went on so long.

Since we last talked, I worked a ridiculous amount, into the wee hours of the night. That in itself is a frustrating, sad story, but it is 100% behind me and won’t be repeated. Which is a beautiful thing.

I co-hosted and recovered from a bachelorette party.

I saw Cinderella and cried four times.

I served as makeup artist and bridesmaid for my dear friend Kristin’s wedding and cried four times during the wedding.

I saw Cinderella again and teared up twice.

My best friend got engaged, and I went shopping with her fiance to help him with his ring selection. He did a marvelous job.

It has been an insane couple of weeks. March was out of control busy until the bitter end. But now I have no commitments until June. And I couldn’t be happier. No, dear.

Easter was lovely and quiet. The Hubbit and I went to church. It rained and frizzed my hair, which was annoying because I spent an entire 20 minutes on it. Then we went out to lunch which turned into brunch and which was super delicious. Then it was home again, and The Hubbit went fishing and I watched Youtube videos and did chores. All in all, it was a lovely, relaxing weekend.

I’ve been under a lot of stress and pressure and pretty much all of my habits fell by the wayside and I’ve been in a little funk. But this week is all about getting back to myself or whatever trendy phrase Goopeth Paltrow would say. Conscious Un-Clusterf$*&ing.

I’m going to clean, work on my book, read, and cook some delicious food. Here’s the menu!

Meal 1: Cream Cheese Crab Stuffed Mushrooms. These are an appetizer, but I’m doubling the recipe and we WILL eat it as dinner, rules be damned!

Meal 2:  Five Spice Cream Cheese Chicken. I will serve with roasted broccoli. I’m looking forward to this one. Yum.

Meal 3: Sliced Tenderloin Steak in Butter Sauce. We had this last night and holy heck was it amazing. Definitely going on my repeat list! Also, I thickened the sauce with just a sprinkle of xanthan gum instead of flour, if you’re at all concerned about that. I served it with our favorite creamed spinach. Yum.

Meal 4: Eggroll in a Bowl. I will most likely have to work late Monday due to deadlines, so this is quick and easy and perfect. I always add a little fish sauce to the sauce mixture, and top with roasted sesame seeds.

Meal 5: Spinach & Artichoke Dip Meatballs. Family favorite. Always and forever. Will serve with roasted cauliflower.

Meal 6: Saag Gosht. One of my favorite Indian dishes. This will be my first attempt at recreating what I get from our favorite delivery place. I am also cracking myself up by referring to this dish as “sad ghost.”

And that’s really all I have to comment on. For now.

It’s good to be back.

The good news is, I feel almost human again. Almost. I guess I’m adjusting to the time change, even though It’s pitch black all morning long and it has seemingly confused everything my body knew to be true. But whatever.

I know I’m not the only one, since everyone at the office is dragging around and drinking two afternoon coffees, but I am completely thrown. I can’t wake up on time for the first time in months, I’m completely off my cleaning/writing/reading schedule. I didn’t do yoga yesterday. I’m a mess! And last week I was pretty “together,” if I do say so myself. Funny how quickly we can crumble into a pile of dishes and eating a spoonful of peanut butter for dinner.

Since I’ve basically been the walking dead over here, I don’t have much to report. Other than that yesterday at work, someone decided it would be a great idea to load all of our security badge pictures into Outlook and have them pop up every time we sent an email. Which is great for people with decent badge pictures. But mine is horrendous. I am literally horrified. It’s one of my least favorite pictures ever, but I didn’t think anyone would see it. Which is why today I am going to wait around and force someone to take a new, better picture.

That’s about it. Back to being sleepy, drinking coffee, and trying not to be a zombie. I hope you have a fantastic Wednesday!

What do you do if it’s both a rainy day AND a Monday? Do you get double down? Or do you flip back ’round to up? These are the questions that haunt me. These are the days of our lives.

Also, what do you do when Daylight Saving Time has you straight trippin’? I’m so stinking tired, since my body technically woke up at 4:15 this morning. And technically fell asleep around 11:45. It’s like the government just likes to punch everyone in the throat every year and then give them a mini case of jet lag. Way to fuel the future, America. I say we should just continually “Fall Back” and then night shift workers could sleep during the night every 12 years or so. These are the ideas I have when I’m out of sleep, people. Don’t get me started on how I think we should adopt the siesta. That is enough uncomfortable, extremist sleep politics for this blog. Now I’m thinking that the sleep politics “platform” would just be a TempurPedic mattress and I am laughing to myself, and this is your brain on sleep deprivation.this is your brain

Anywho, seriously, let’s move on.

The weekend was grand! Grand, I say! Friday night, the Hubbit and I had ourselves a little date night at Perry’s. It was super delicious, and I made many Instagram food puns. Also, while we were there, there was a wedding. Like someone was getting married in the steakhouse. Like the bride had to walk through the restaurant to get to the private room where the ceremony/ meat reception was. I mean… we have made a pretty firm commitment to (organic, grass-fed, locally sourced) red meat, but… something about the smell of rendered tallow doesn’t scream “Coming together before God” to me. More like, “We’re going to be too full to make out later.” But hey, to each their own.

Saturday I hung out with my fambly, which was lovely. Sunday I woke up disoriented and angry, but we’ve already talked about my sleep issues. I didn’t feel right/good, maybe because of the sleeping, maybe because of the weather. So we just putted around and did some chores and went to the grocery store in the rain. I did receive some very happy news yesterday, but I’m not at liberty to share yet.

Other than that, it’s basically another day another dollar around here. Or something. Here’s what’s on my menu:

Meal 1: I made this Chicken Pot Pie With Cheesy Biscuit Crust last night and it was super delicious. The topping almost tastes like a dumpling, when you get it with the pot pie sauce.

Meal 2: The Veal Saltimbocca Meatballs and Butter and Wine Roasted Mushrooms I never made last week.

Meal 3: These Sausage Biscuits which remind me of some Bisquick sausage balls I used to make back in the olden days. I will serve them with some steamed broccoli, because that is my choice as an American. I have not made these before, but I’m super excited to try them.

Meal 4: Chicken Satay Meatballs, which I will serve with this Whole Roasted Tandoori Cauliflower. Haven’t made either of these before, but am seriously pumped to do so.

Meal 5: Beer Braised Bratwurst and Caramelized Sauerkraut. Because the name has so much fun alliteration. And because DUH. Have not made before.

Meal 6: I’m just going to grill up (and by grill, I mean pan-sear and finish in the oven) some steaks and make my very favorite onions in the entire world. Can’t wait. I’ve been craving these babies for weeks.

And that’s about it for me. I hope this rainy/Monday doesn’t get you down. Have a good one!

Every single time I sit down to write a post, I have to fight the urge to open with “Greetings, Earthlings.” Every. Single. Time. I don’t know why. I don’t find it particularly clever or even enjoyable. It’s just there, in the front of my mind. It’s like the one summer when I had the national anthem stuck in my head. For pretty much the entire summer. Could not stop singing it. So damn patriotic/clinically insane.

Anyway, I just wanted to shine some light on my creative process and the challenges I face is producing these quality blog posts. But enough about my craft.

It’s Friday! Let the people rejoice! This is the day the Lord hath made! We don’t have too much going on this weekend. Tonight I’ll take care of the chores I missed due to work deadlines wearing me out. My computer just made a terrifying robot noise and now I don’t know how to feel about anything.

Moving on, I know it’s segue’s like that that keep you coming back here. Saturday I’m going to hang out with my Mama and talk writing, so that’ll be fun. And Sunday we’re headed down to see The Hubbit’s family, so that will also be fun. Other than that, we don’t have too much else going on, just the way I like it. I will be working on my book. And that’s pretty exciting.

Other than that, I don’t have too much to say. But I do need to research cleaning products. I’m not here to make you feel inferior. But if the glamour of my life hurts you, well, I’m sorry.

Have an amazing weekend!

Morning, Dear Ones!

It’s Wednesday! We’ve made it halfway(ish) to the weekend! PLT!

Today is probably going to be a late night at work for me, but I’m going to do everything in my power to ensure it’s as early as it can possibly be. From my blog to God’s ears, am I right?

Anywho, I am feeling good. Like good good. I’m getting multitudes of energy from my diet. That has not always been the case, so this is a big deal. I feel like I’m starting to lose some of the work-induced burn-out I’ve been experiencing for, oh, three and a half years. I have time again.

I’m blogging, I’m exercising, I’m working on my book. I’m organizing and cleaning the house. I’m cooking dinners. I’m reading books. I’m doing everything I want to be doing, and things I should be doing. I go to sleep tired, happy, and ready for a new day.

I can’t tell you what pill I took, or what switch I flipped, because I didn’t. Something just clicked in February, and now it’s in overdrive. I have to believe it’s a combination of work finally calming down after years of not, and then the promotion, and again, eating a diet that’s healthy for me.

Anyway, I’m surprisingly loving my cleaning schedule. I’ve pinned tons of them, but none were ever perfect for our life. So I made my own.

chore chart

 

I’m really liking it so far. Most chores are only about 30 minutes a day, and there is a lot of flexibility. Big, deep-cleaning projects can be done on the weekend (lookin’ at you, oven). If the week gets crazy and you can’t get to one of them, you have the whole weekend to catch up. Or, you can skip it (not laundry, though, trust me.) Your house will still stand if you go two weeks without vacuuming. Promise. Obviously, you have to keep up with dishes daily, but we all know that’s a never-ending cycle from hell.

I’ve found that there’s a real pride in caring for your home. It’s so much nicer to come home to a house that’s clean and sparkly, if only partially unpacked. That’s what my Thursdays are for. Shhhh. Another pro tip? Put it in writing. Commit. You can do it.

So that’s my quasi-motivational segment for the week. Overall, I’m just joyful and I’m wishing you all the same kind of happiness. The kind we usually reserve for Friday at 5:00.

Have a great day!

Hello, Beautiful People!

I made an extra delicious bulletproof coffee this morning, so I’m pretty jazzed. That being said, it’s still Monday, and somehow, seemingly while I was living life, the world decided it was March.

Excuse me? February went by so quickly! I took an unexpected blogging break (sorry about that), but I’m back now, and with a plan. I’ve spent a lot of time thinking and plotting and planning and attempting to structure my life. And as much as I love blogging and Pinteresting, etc., my ultimate life goal is still to be a fiction writer. A published fiction writer. And so, with that in mind, and with my need to exercise regularly, I will only be blogging Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, for the foreseeable future.

Trust me, I work better with a deadline, hence the sporadic posting of recent. I was always like, “I’ll blog tomorrow.” And then I never did. So, good, we’re on the same page. That’s the plan. Let’s do it.

Business out of the way, let’s talk Galveston trip!

It was amazing. Perfect. Everything we’ve ever needed. The Hubbit booked us a gorgeous room at the Tremont House. It was a perfect location. If you follow me on Instagram, you know we basically spent our time eating. We did a teeny bit of driving the sea wall and walking the strand, but mostly we ate and stayed in bed. I also read 3 books. So I’m doing okay on my reading goal of 50 books! I’ve read 5 this year. There have been 9 weeks in the new year, so I’m ~4 books behind. But never you fret, I can catch up real quick. Luckily I’m a very fast reader.

I finished Stay Close by Harlan Coben (A book you own but have never read). I enjoyed it! Not the best ever, but it was easy to read and entertaining.

Then I read Rebound by Noelle August (A book you can finish in a day). Which, I can finish most books in a day. I really loved this book! It was a perfect, lighthearted, entertaining vacation read. You fell instantly in love with the characters (which you would know from Boomerang, which is book #1) and it was difficult to put down.

Then I conquered The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson (A book set in a different country) which I really, really loved. It was awesome. I have the second book in my “to-read” pile, and it’s calling to me.

And, most recently, I read Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard (A book written by someone under 30). It was spectacular. And amazing. And I’m trying really hard not to let my jealousy of Victoria spoil my enjoyment of this book. She was 22 when she sold a mult-book deal for over $1 million. So whatever. At least it was a gorgeous story. And unfortunately we have to wait forever for the next book!

Reading Goal Update 3-2-15

 

And other than that, I’ve just been workin’ and meal plannin’. Speaking of, this week, we have:

Meal 1: Mexican Beef (or Bison) Stew. Made this last night and it was incroyable!

Meal 2: Sausage and roasted broccoli. Easy. It’s deadline week.

Meal 3: Veal Saltimbocca Meatballs w/ Butter and Wine Roasted Mushrooms. The meatballs are a favorite, but I’ve never tried the mushrooms before. Trust me, use veal.

Meal 4: Breakfast for dinner. Natch.

Meal 5: Roasted Cabbage Bolognese. I’ll be making this sauce, but with beef this time, and serving over roasted cabbage as the “noodles.” Hopefully it will be delicious! I’m sure it will be.

Meal 6: Chicken Strips (with homemade ranch for me!) and steamed cauliflower. This is my attempt to balance an all beef and pork menu. Usually I try to diversify better, but oh well!

Again, it’s deadline week, so I needed things that were easy, comforting, and delicious.

This weekend, I had the pleasure, honor, and thrill of going engagement ring shopping with my best friend’s boyfriend. She already knew we were going, so it’s cool. I spent the rest of the weekend grocery shopping, cleaning house, and thinking about writing. It. Was. Glorious.

That’s about all for me, folks. I hope you have a beautiful Monday, if that’s possible. Kick it down before it kicks you down. The Monday Games.

See you Wednesday!

Greetings, Earthlings.

What it do? I had a pretty fabulous weekend. Saturday was full of writing, weeping, and gnashing of teeth until I finally published a little short story. You can read it here, if you want.

I spent the rest of the day with my Valentine. We went out to dinner at Black Walnut Cafe, which is where we had our first date. And where we went last Valentine’s Day. Neither of us can remember what we did for our first Valentine’s Day, but we’re guessing I cooked. It would’ve been only a few months before the wedding, so that makes sense. We were broke.

After dinner we headed to Sprouts Farmer’s Market (not really a FM, but kind of like Whole Foods meets HEB meets a smaller grocer/ a touch of Trader Joe’s?) and scouted what our options were. We had been once before and had been meaning to go back, but our rental house took us far away from Sprouts. Now that we’re in *our* house, however, we’re very close. Anyway, the scouting was a success and we’re going to switch to Sprouts as our primary grocer. We might still need to stock up on some stuff at HEB, but for most of our needs, Sprouts is the way to go. I bought an 8 or 9 month supply of coconut oil for $40. So we know we’ll be saving some money in the long run. We rounded Saturday out with some couch cuddle time and some Ghost Adventures. The new episode scared me to death. Eeeps.

Sunday we went to my parent’s house to celebrate my baby brother’s 17th birthday, which is actually today! Happy birthday, bro!! I can’t even think about the baby being seventeen. So I won’t. After delicious burgers and fun family time, we headed back to Sprouts to grab what we needed for the week. Upon returning home, I cooked dinner and we settled in to watch SNL’s 40th Anniversary. It was amazing and a real treat. 3.5 solid hours of laughs from me. I love SNL!

Anywho, the menu is pretty standard this week. I’m going out with a friend one night, so The Hubbit has freedom to eat whatever his heart desires (Whataburger, I’m sure.) and we’re going out of town Friday night, so I planned fewer meals. We’re taking a little almost stay-cation and heading to Galveston for the weekend. We plan to do nothing except enjoy living in a hotel for a couple of days and eating food. I. Can’t. Wait. In the meantime, here’s what we’ll be eating:

Meal 1: Louisiana BBQ Shrimp with Caulirice. Made this last night. It was very tasty. Yum.

Meal 2: Veal Saltimbocca Meatballs with roasted broccoli. Two family faves. Pro tips: Use veal for the meatballs and sprinkle parm on the boroccoli when it’s fresh out of the oven. Cry with joy.

Meal 3: Paprika Chicken Thighs with Creamy Garlic Mushrooms. Two more faves you’ll recongnize. Except Sprouts didn’t have any bone-in, skin-on thighs, so we got drumsticks to experiment with. Should be delicious. Yum.

Meal 4: Steak and Roasted Cabbage Carbonara. I don’t have a recipe for steak. Just a God-given talent. But I will be trying something new with the carbonara. Looking wayyy forward to it. Yum!

And that’s all she wrote. Hope you all have a fabulous day.

Hello again, world. Did you know that is is Friday Eve? Because it is! Everyone celebrate! This has been an off the chain, insane week for me. Let me clue you in… (Insert Wayne’s World wavy arms and “doodly-doo noises.)

As I mentioned, Monday I had dinner with my lovely Patricia. And it was all laugh, laugh, eat, plan, talk, laugh, coffeecoffeecoffee, etc. It was a delightful time, and ’round about 10:00, we decided we needed to leave. We had parked at different sides of the restaurant, and since we are perpetually teenage girls, we determined I would drive her back to her car. Luckily. Luckily.

Because my car wouldn’t start. Wouldn’t even pretend. It did start to sound its own alarm whenever I took my keys out of the ignition, though. So there’s that.

Patricia was my lady knight in shining earrings, and searched her car for jumper cables, and then went back into the restaurant and asked if anyone had any.

By the providence of God alone, a restaurant employee had arrived for his shift when Patricia was searching her car for cables, and had parked right next to me. It was amazing. We popped our hoods and he jumped my car, and was just so nice. It could have been so much worse. I calmed down enough to drive and Patricia, the saint that she is, followed me mostly home to make sure the battery didn’t die on the freeway, because I was convinced that can happen.

I made it home safely, of course, and Tuesday morning The Hubbit and I headed over to Walmart and bought a new battery and he installed it. Everything’s running smoothly now, but it was intense at the time.

It also caused me to be up super late Monday night, and then super late to work Tuesday, which meant I worked late Tuesday. And then I needed to finish some writing stuff I’m working on. I went to bed terrifyingly early Tuesday because I was just plum tuckered out. I’m feeling footloose and fancy free now, though, so watch out world!

Also, in this week’s news, some of you might remember when I reviewed Boomerang by Noelle August. (Buy it here and thank me later.) Well, the second book in the series, Rebound, released Tuesday and the authors held a fun digital book launch party. I hung around until I went to bed at a cavalier 8:45, and so I totally missed the news that I won part of the contests!

I am going to have a book character named after me in the third book! I am trying to contain my excitement and joy and wonder, but it goes something like this:

AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

All in all, not a bad week. Here’s to hoping it wraps up in a delightful package.

Have a good day!

 

Happy (?) Monday, my fine-feathered friends. I hope these words find you well-rested and ready for another week. Won’t comment on my own mental state. Nope. Not today. Just gonna roll on by and change the subject.

Food. We like it. I make it. Here’s what I got going on the menu this week. Also, I have no idea where this clipped and grammatically incorrect voice is coming from. Oh, wait, probably Hell on Wheels. Mmmmhmmm.

Meal 1: Last night I made ‘Best Damn’ Short Ribs and Creamy Garlic Mushrooms. It was super delicious. Very good, very easy recipe for the ribs. You just need a while to let them slow braise in the oven and omggggg. Delicious. This is the second time I’ve made the mushrooms, and this time I doubled it so we could have more than like 6 mushrooms apiece. I also tripled the amount of garlic, because I always do. I love fresh garlic. And it’s good for you. Deal with it.

Tonight I’m meeting my dear friend Patricia at Goode Company Seafood. Neither of us have been, but we both love seafood. I’m really looking forward to it. The Hubbit is taking this opportunity to pick up or order something for himself. Works for me!

The remainder of the menu is as follows:

Meal 2: Eggroll in a Bowl. This time I’m adding some dried (and rehydrated) shitake mushrooms. Also, I like to add a little fish sauce to the soy for some depth of flavor, and top with toasted sesame seeds. I might sprinkle some sriracha on, too. The sauce world is my oyster.

Meal 3: Pan-Seared Lamb Chops with Cippolini Onions. Or, in my case, Lamb loin chops because HEB only had three of the tiniest rib chops I’d ever seen. I’m just going to Google and make sure the same prep will be okay. Also, I got golden pearl onions because obvi they didn’t have the Cippolinis. Also, pretty sure my husband won’t even eat one because he “doesn’t like onions” but whatever. I’m slowing breaking him, I think. The true sign of a happy marriage. I’ll be serving this with the easiest, most delicious creamed spinach in the world.

Meal 4: 4 Minute Spicy Garlic Shrimp. Never made this before, but it sounds promising. Yum. Serving with some roasted broccoli.

Meal 5: B for D. Breakfast for Dinner. Bacon and eggs, son! Depending on how much I just want to chill Friday night, I will either just scramble or fry the eggs, orrrrr, I’m considering Soft-Boiled Eggs with Butter. Because I’ve been drooling over them for weeks and have yet to make them.

And that’s about all I got to say about that.

Had a good, non-eventful weekend. Worked on my short story (hope to show that to you soon), read some. Watched a lot of TV, slept a lot. Cooked some real good food. Went to HEB at the worst time to go to HEB. Nothing much to report.

I hope y’all have a good and tasty week. What are you cooking?