Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Lunch with my son, Charles, and his wife, Nancy, went very well today. I made a pork loin roast in the crock pot/slow cooker. I was going to start it before I went to bed last night at 11:30 but that would have been 12 hours on low and I thought that would really be too long. The packaging said "Do not overcook". So I left it in the refrigerator and then when I woke up at 5 AM to go to the bathroom, I remembered to put it in the slow cooker with a little water. It was pre-seasoned. So it cooked for 6 hours and it was fork-tender perfect. I served barbeque sauce with the meat.
I made a vegetable medley of broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, zucchini, and yellow squash. I let them put their own butter on the veggies. I ate mine plain with just some salt. I love veggies. Don't have to feel any guilt or regret after eating them. So healthy !
I made macaroni and cheese out of a box but I baked it instead of following the package directions and I use two packages of cheese to make it cheesier. I also used a whole cup of milk instead of the 1/4 cup called for. Basically you just have to use 2 1/4 cups of liquid, butter, and cheese, and the dry noodles and bake it for 45 minutes at 350 degrees. It comes out like homemade. My son couldn't believe it came from a box.
That was lunch. Yummy.
My son drove me to a doctor appointment after lunch but the doctor was quick - I was in and out of the office in 10 minutes. He just had to make sure I was healing up from the throat surgery I had 3 weeks ago. I'm doing really well. I believe my sleep apnea has been cured and I'll be able to sleep soon without the CPAP machine. The ENT said it will be a couple more months to heal up completely. Then I'll have another sleep study in May. I forgot to ask him about my biopsy results but I'm sure if I had cancer he would have told me. Apparently it was just a "squamous pappiloma" like a wart. No worries.
The three of us played cards after that. Charles was the big winner - he is extremely intelligent. We had fun. Today was a GOOD day. Hope you had a good day too ! Happy Sparking !
Monday, March 10, 2014
I just love to cook. I rarely use a recipe. I just like to figure out on my own how to make good old fashioned home-cooked meals. Today I decided to make Stuffed Green Bell Peppers and take some pictures along the way. I think cooking is my favorite hobby.
Here are the ingredients I used:
2 large or 3 medium green bell peppers
1/2 pound fresh ground beef
2/3 cup COOKED rice
l large can Italian-style crushed tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
salt and pepper
shredded cheese if you want
First cut the tops off the peppers and remove the seeds from inside. Then dice up the tops that you cut off, discarding the stem. Reserve 1/2 of the diced peppers for the sauce and put 1/2 in the meat & rice stuffing.
Next dice up the 1/2 onion. Reserve 1/2 of the diced onion for the sauce and put 1/2 in the meat & rice stuffing.
Combine the 1/2 pound of ground beef, 2/3 cup COOKED white rice, 1/2 of the diced green bell pepper tops, 1/2 of the diced onion (1/4 of an onion), 1/4 teaspoon of garlic, and 2/3 cup of the Italian style crushed tomatoes. Save the rest of the tomatoes for the sauce. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. If you use plain crushed tomatoes, you can add l teaspoon of Italian seasoning herbs ( sweet basil and oregano).
With a wooden spatula, fill the green peppers with the meat and rice mixture.
Combine the remainder of the crushed tomatoes with the reserved diced onion and the reserved diced green bell peppers. Pour the sauce over the top of the meat & rice stuffed peppers.
Bake in a covered casserole dish or cover with aluminum foil
Bake 350 degrees for an hour.
My sweetie likes his topped with cheese 10 minutes before they're done because he loves cheese on everything. I prefer mine without cheese. Leave uncoverd for 10 minutes or until the cheese is melted .
Cool for 5 minutes before serving.
Bon Appetite !
Saturday, March 08, 2014
My son, David, and I walked down to the beach and had lunch at the "Inn on the Gulf". He ordered coconut shrimp for the appetizer and then we had a grouper sandwich with coleslaw. Everything was delicious.
When we arrived back home, my sweetheart, Johnny had bought me living tulips in a glass vase and giant strawberry cheesecake. He had already given me an ankle bracelet and card.
We had a lovely day.
My son, Charles, and his wife, Nancy, are coming over for lunch on Tuesday when I'm cooking a pork roast in the slow cooker/crock pot.
This really is "the best birthday ever"!
Thursday, March 06, 2014
I was looking at how I rated myself on the various areas of Voluntary Simplicity that I wrote about in a previous blog.
On meaningful work, whether paid or volunteer, I had only rated myself a level 1 which is very poor. I started thinking about that. Yes, I am a retired medical technoloist from a major hospital and don't work in a regular job. And I'm not doing any official volunteer work at a church or charity. But I DO work occasionally, doing cleaning jobs for a couple who owns rental property. And I run a smooth household with four pets - a dog, a cat, a bird, and a fish. They are all healthy and well taken care of. Pets are always a little bit of a chore.
We live in an apartment without a fenced in yard so I have to take my puppy, Jasmine, out on a leash three times a day to walk down the street and do her "thing". I always bring a bag to pick up after her and throw it in the dumpster. Then she gets a bath once a month which I do in our bathtub followed by an application of Advantage 24 hours later to prevent fleas which she is very allergic to. I clip her nails myself also. Of course there's fresh water every day and dry food and occasional treats. I really should play with her more. That's something I can work on.
Our kitty-cat, Zeppelin, is strictly an indoor cat so I have to clean the litter box every day to keep it from getting stinky. He can drink water out of the fish bowl, but he demands a treat of tuna fish every morning in addition to his dry food throughout the rest of the day. No baths for him. That's about it for him.
Our parakeet, Metallica, needs fresh water and bird seed every day and the bottom of the cage cleaned out once a week. He's quite easy. We never take him out of his cage because the cat or dog would attack him.
Our fish, MUSE, needs fresh water with conditioner drops 2-3 times per week because we don't have a filter running. He's just in a little goldfish bowl. I also have to feed him a tiny bit every day, of course.
That's about all I have to do for our pets but I also do all the grocery shopping and other shopping for the house. I LOVE to cook and bake so I prepare meals every day. And we don't have a dishwasher so there's dishes to wash. I keep our apartment neat and clean at all times. It's only one bedroom so that's pretty easy, but I would count that as "work". When I look at all I do around home, I want to re-think my rating of only (1) for meaningful work. I believe I'll change that to a (3) which is "okay".
I have to admit I get a little board. But all-in-all I LOVE my life and I'm plenty busy. I've always needed a lot of sleep and I try to take a nap every afternoon. It's really important for me to get adequate sleep as I have a mental illness for which I take medication.
So for meaningful work, either paid or volunteer, I'm changing my rating to (3). I do more than I realize. I still will consider signing up for volunteer work at either a church or at the local hospital. I'm not sure. There is a Thrift Store right down the street where it would be fun to volunteer. I'll check into that.
Next blog, I'll look at another area of Voluntary Simplicity and how I rated myself. How do you rate yourself on meaningful work?
Tuesday, March 04, 2014
Since I'm learning about "Voluntary Simplicity", I decided to make my new vision board very simple.
I have just 3 simple steps to a Healthier ME: Water, Veggies, and Walking.
It doesn't get much simpler than that.
I have just 15 pounds to lose to reach my goal weight. I'm going to concentrate on just 3 simple areas to get there. Just (l) drink lots of water, (2) eat lots of veggies, and (3) walk every day.
It's been working so far. I've lost 40 pounds ! I've come SO FAR ! The 140's HERE I COME !
Happy Sparking !
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