Currently Reading:

Currently Reading:

Station Eleven

by: Emily St. John Mandel

Monday, April 6, 2015

First Review Live

Please go over to Girl Who Reads and read my first book review on Eviction Notice by Robyn Wyrick by following this link:

Eviction Notice Review

Girl Who Reads is a great website with reviews, meet the author posts, and other topics for anyone interested in books, reading books, reviewing books, etc.

Hope you enjoy my review and if Eviction Notice sparks your interest go buy it please!  I think you'll love it!

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

New Hobby for a book lover!

Have you been to Girl Who Reads?   I love finding new books that others have found interesting which is why I started to follow her blog and her Facebook page.

This last week I saw a posting on her Facebook page asking for new book reviewers.  I am a avid reader and love leaving opinions for other people curious about books so I replied that I was interested.

She asked that I submit a review from a book I've read this year so I selected The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon.

Here is my review for that book:

The Bone Season

I have read it twice now. Once last year and once again this year to prepare for the release of the second book The Mime Order.

Anyway, Girl Who Reads, Donna liked my review and I am now set to read and review books a couple times a month!

Check it out: Girl Who Reads - About

When they become available I send out a small post with a link to the website.

What are you reading? What are your suggestions of things for me to read?

Happy Wednesday folks!

Friday, June 20, 2014

A BANG and a fizzle

So my intention when I woke up this morning was to make my quiches, strain off my chicken stock, make banana bread and mini muffins, and probably make more Gluten free flour mix.

I did get bacon cooked and ready for the quiches, and the chicken stock from the bones of my Cost-co chickens was done over night in the slow cooker and one in my big chili pot that needed to be simmered this morning for 15-20 minutes.

But that BANG of energy fizzled quick today.  Fickle third trimester energy bursts.  Oh well. I spent quality time with the little man while I rested (while my brain was telling me I should be working).

I got a small burst of energy around 10:30 and decided since our replacement part for the crib arrived, that I would finish making it and get some things organized in the kids' room.  Only to find out one bolt is missing...sigh moving. So I piled little man into the car and went to the hardware store (made more enticing because it is located next to a Dairy Queen and that made me daydream of Dilly bars).

Much to the searching of the two employees they couldn't find the right length bolt for me to use. DOUBLE SIGH.

So naturally I did stop at the DQ and thought it would be a good time to stock the freezer with those amazing bars because I think this summer is going to be a HOT one here in the Pac-NW. We've already reached what is our normal mid-summer High this last week so best be prepared.

After blogging last night I gave myself a mantra, "What have I done today to prepare for little miss?"  I tell myself if I do a little each day then this next 6 weeks will fly by and I'll be more ready that if I attempt to wait for a big burst of energy one day.

One thing I did today to prepare was clean out my fridge and see what I could make for dinner that was low in dairy, gluten free (of course), and easy because my energy was just sapped. I took some rotisserie dark meat chicken I needed to use up, a bag of frozen peas & carrots, diced up some onions left over from my GF onion rings I made this week, 3 cloves of garlic minced, a can of green beans, a small can of creamed corn, and 3 red potatoes from my produce co-op dice small and some chicken stock from the last time I made it.  I created a Chicken pot pie filling/soup mixture using water, chicken stock, cornstarch, and 1/4 cup milk and salt and pepper.

I served it in a bowl like soup with some left over GF hamburger buns I made the same night I made the onion rings. It was pretty darn delicious. The bonus was that there was enough left over that I dumped it into a Gallon size freezer bag, labeled what it was, and stashed it in my freezer for more of the same meal, or maybe for a almost as quick chicken pot pie.

After supper I was sidelined by this on again off again ear ache, toothache, and general pain and discomfort of having a wiggling baby inside my belly.  I feared I wouldn't get anything cleaned up or put away in the kitchen.

After doing some venting to a friend on Facebook, I felt well enough to get up and try to get the things I was working on in the fridge, freezer, and dishes done so I can cook tomorrow. My chicken stock is back in the rinsed out stock pot after being strained twice. Tomorrow I will skim the fat off and put it in some Ziploc gallon sized bags to go in the freezer. Dishes are done and as soon as I'm done writing, I'm going to quick chop up the broccoli so I can blanch it tomorrow for my quiches maybe while I make some banana bread or muffins in the morning.

I hope this helps inspire any of you who are trying to get a bunch of things prepared for your little one's arrival that every small bit helps.  Until tomorrow where I will hope for more BANG and less fizzle!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

16 months later...

Well it certainly has been a long time since I posted last.

I will do a separate blog later next week explaining where I am at with the Gluten problems.

SPOILERS - I am still gluten free and have been as best as I can since May 6th, 2013.

What am I doing these days...

Well in the last month my hubby, son, and I have all downsized, weeded, thrown away, given away many things we were "hoarding" (including our massive book collection) and moved into a small 2 bedroom condo 2 miles from our old place. We no longer have roommates, my son turned 3, my hubby turned 30, and I turned 33.  Hubby left his job of 6 1/2 years to a new contractor position with a neat family company. Oh and did I mention I'm pregnant with baby number two (due August 2nd) and we moved our selves except the furniture?

So what else are you doing Lis?  Heh, well making a major dent in my crafting to do pile. I completed 7 burp clothes for the baby, a minky/flannel blanket, a bobby pillow cover, cradle bed fitted sheet for the antique cradle we use the first few months (while baby is small enough), and now my nesting instincts have switched from unpacking, organizing the new place, and still weeding through things (man that is the best thing about being pregnant when moving I tell you), to preparing for the little one. Saturday will mark 6 weeks until my due date.

I have been diagnosed with Gestational Diabetes again this time around (5 weeks earlier in fact) and the standard procedure is that they won't let me get to my due date because of not wanting the baby to get too big.  So I literally have 6 weeks or less to finish everything my brain is asking me to get done before SHE arrives.  That's right - we're having a girl!

This week's project has been figuring out ways to stock my small chest freezer with food for us to grab, thaw, reheat for when I don't want to THINK about what to make for dinner.  This time around Hubby won't have any paternity leave, and while my mother is coming for 2 weeks, and possibly we may have help for the whole month of August with guests coming to help, I don't want to rely on her vacation time to do all the cooking.

So what am I doing today to help me prepare.  I made a trip to Cost-co to purchase a few things I know we will want to have stocked before baby gets here (dishwasher detergent, AA batteries for the toys big brother has and electronics that require them to function, fruit for the 3 year old fruit monster who lives with us.)  While I was thinking of things I needed to get (making a list for the 3rd trimester baby brain that is ugly) I thought - hey I love those rotisserie chickens. Why not get 2-3 each time I go, clean off the meat, chop it, and freeze it so we can use the meat in a jiffy later on.

I also notice the local grocery store had a wonderful sale on Large AA eggs this week and decided it would be a great and easy thing to prepare a few quiches to pull out and reheat while the eggs were cheap!

So I came home with 3 chickens, some bell peppers, carrots, celery, garlic, strawberries and raspberries, a bit block of medium cheddar cheese, dishwasher soap, freezer quart and gallon bags, batteries, freeze dried fruit snacks, and a large case of my favorite diet soda.

Part of this nesting for me was that I felt - what if baby girl got impatient and came earlier than 6 weeks - sure I have her clothes washed, cradle ready, crib partially together (a story for another blog), and bottles in the cupboard - but I didn't have diapers or formula (in case Breastfeeding works as well as it did with big brother).  So I came home with a small package of Newborn diapers, and a medium package for size 1 in case she's bigger than we anticipate, and a container of formula.

This trip alone makes me feel much more in control and less panicky about being so close to the end. The chickens yielded 4 lbs 9 oz of chicken meat which i chopped and divided and placed in the freezer. The bones, carrots, celery, garlic, spices, and onion (from my pantry) all got placed in either a stock pot on the stove or the slow cooker with water to make home made chicken stock. Tomorrow I'll strain it (probably twice), then portion it out into 2 cup portions in freezer bags, lay them flat in the freezer to harden, then have them ready for when we want to use it to make mashed potatoes (would highly recommend boiling your potatoes in chicken stock versus water) or soup.

Anywho, that about puts me where I'm at today. Tomorrow I'm hoping to get the quiches made - bacon with cheese, and broccoli with cheese for sure, bake some banana bread and banana chocolate chip mini muffins, and maybe get some apple slices on the dehydrator since it won't be so hot out tomorrow.  Until then loyal readers (if you are out there...)

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Major life changes

So you may be asking where did I go? Did I drop off the planet? Probably for you 2 followers and family/friends that read my posts it's not a big deal.  I have many photos ready to blog about in the past couple weeks but life has thrown me a curve ball.

The diagnosis isn't official yet but I am waiting on the results of a skin biopsy that will tell me what myself and my dermatologist suspect...that I have a skin disorder called Dermatitis Herpetiformis (DH) which is an EXTREMELY, oh my goodness you can't even imagine, itchy rash with blisters. Now on top of that about 80-90% of the people with DH also have Celiac's disease which means Gluten is now my worst enemy.

I am in the process of de-contaminating my house. 95% of my kitchen utensils/bakeware/cookware will need to be replaced due to possibly contamination.

Last night I spent my "family craft night" purging out my's quite empty compared to what it used to be. I have a tub of cooking things that are currently gluten free all sealed so that I can eat without problems.

That's just the kitchen...Gluten can be found in shampoo, conditioner, lotions, soaps, lipstick, lip gloss, chapstick, envelopes, stamps, playdoh, toothpastes, diaper cream, wipes....

It's going to be a long process...

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

WIP Wednesday

So it's time to link up with Lee at Freshly Pieced again.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced 

 I have been diligently working on things that are needing to be finished by this Saturday, however I can't really show you any of them.

I can tell you I have finished 4 projects in the last week since starting the WIP wednesday blog. I have one sitting next to my laptop right now just needing ends to be weaved in.

I have 2-3 more projects to finish in the next two days and Saturday Night I will post about what all I made. (I don't want to ruin any surprises).

As far as other crafts go: I got the Little man's special Valentine's Day project finished (another no pictures allowed until the recipients receive them.

I will say it is sooooo much fun to introduce little man to painting, play-doh, and crayons. I can't wait until he wants to do more projects with me!

I have been sketching lately as part of Sketchuary, a group on Facebook. The goal is to sketch every day for the month of February and post the one sketch on the group page. It's pretty amazing to see such creativity at work.

WIP in the kitchen: I've been busy. I've made 2 or 3 new recipes I want to share. Maybe I will have a moment tomorrow to type the blogs up. I will say the most exciting thing is back when I made my new favorite chili, I had a friend go out and get the ingredients for my Go To Chili recipe and made it. She too has been looking for a good chili recipe and I am happy to report that she and her husband both loved the chili!

 The biggest work in progress that I'm working on is fitness related:  This couple I know are trying to do 100 pushups a day for 100 days. That's right fellow math geeks, crunch those numbers. For those of you who don't like math that's 10,000 pushups in 100 days. Well I got started a few days late and calculated how many I needed to do to stay on track with these friends. For the last three days I have done 104 pushups.  I remember back in high school how hard 25 straight leg pushups were. I am starting out with bent knee pushups. I started out doing 3 sets of 25 and one set of 29. I can already tell that my body is adjusting to the routine because tonight I did one set of 25, one set of 34, and the last set of 45!!!!! I think that's amazing. 

Oh and I'm still working on the Love and Freindship book by Jane Austen. Somehow I didn't think reading stories from a teenage from the regency period would be so difficult, but I am trudging along.

So that's where I am at!  Where are you all in your list of TO Accomplish?  Have you started on them? What are you waiting for?

Friday, February 1, 2013

My New Go To Chili Recipe

Holy Cannoli Batman!  I've been itching to make chili now for more than 2 weeks. It just sounds good. Maybe I am feeling sympathy for all my friends and family in the Midwest where the temperatures are negative. (Did I mention how happy I am to be out in the Pacific Northwest!)

Anywho, So tonight I decided to actually get off my butt and make it for dinner. I had previously looked at recipes the last two days for one that I liked but I came up with things that just looked ok, but not "Oh my heavens, I HAVE to make that."

sort of like this little beauty...that is currently on my list of things to drool over everyday until I make it. If I just made your mouth is the link for the recipe:
Triple-Chocolate Mousse Cake

Seriously...when I have a stressful day I'd like a couple of these puppies to make things so much better, wouldn't you?

So Husband and I ate this chili for dinner, The seasonings were all eyeballed so the following recipe was the best guess. The Rotel tomatoes and green chiles do have a heat to them (in case you need to cut out all spice).  The review from the husband was: "zomg that's good." He gobbled the entire bowl up. He also attempted to downplay how good it was so he could have more (to save others from having to have a bowl).

 My Chili
2 packages of sirloin tip steaks, chopped into bite size pieces
1.25 lbs ground beef
2 green peppers
10 mini sweet peppers (or 1-2 red, yellow, or orange peppers), diced
1 medium onion, diced
4-5 cloves garlic, minced
2 cans Rotel diced tomatoes and green chilies
1 can tomato sauce
1 can butter beans (could use two) drained & rinsed
1 can tri-blend beans (kidney, black, and pinto) drained & rinsed
1 can sweet corn, drained
1 can of water
Chili powder
Salt and pepper
Garlic powder
Onion powder
1 can of Guinness beer
1-2 Tbsp Olive Oil
1 scallion, chopped (greens only)

In a large stock pot, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add steak pieces (do two batches if you need to) Brown pieces, season with salt and pepper and set aside. Meanwhile in a second pan, brown beef, season lightly with chili powder, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper. Set aside.
Once steak pieces are cooked, sauté onions in stock pot with a splash of oil. Add green peppers and sweet peppers and garlic, deglaze with the beer. Add tomato sauce, 1 can of water, add both beans, add corn, and both meats. Stir to combine.  Add 1 ½ palmfuls of chili powder, 2-3 tsp of cumin, 1 tsp garlic powder and onion powder,  1-2 Tbsp oregano. Sprinkle with a dash of salt and pepper.  Stir to combine spices. To thicken. Take ¼ to ½ cup of just the liquid part of the chili into a bowl or cup. Add generous sprinkle of cornstarch (maybe 3-4 Tbsp) and whisk until combine. Add back to chili. (I did this twice).  Cook for 15 minutes on stove top to meld flavors.  Serve with shredded Pepper Jack Cheese, garnish with chopped scallions and tortilla chips on the side.

And in case you don't like my recipe and are still searching for your favorite chili recipe Check out this one: