31 October 2012

30 Days of Thankfulness.

Today is Halloween.
Apparently, I am a fun sucker, as I've recently discovered I kind of don't like this holiday.
Sorry, dressing up is too much effort ya'll.

Which means, tomorrow, is November.
Which means we're only 22 days from Thanksgiving.
Which means, a lot of things.

Numero uno being...
It's time to remember what to be thankful for.
Since beginning to declutter my home and my life, I have begun to realize how silly some of the material possesions I (and others) cling to actually are.  How many purses does one person NEED, really?  {ok, so I really haven't thinned the herd on those yet, sue me.}  But with Thanksgiving just around the chilly corner, I really wanted to do something to celebrate in a way that's not all about the food.  And I love the food.

Beginning tomorrow, I will be posting every single day (omg shocking!).  Each day will be about one more thing that I'm thankful for.  Admittedly some of them are ridiculous, but some are things I think we all have a tendency to take for granted.  And if there's one thing I've learned this year, it is that you should take nothing for granted.  Anything can change in an instant.

But for today,
Happy Halloween


21 October 2012

Sometimes The Beatles have the best advice.

So, I've posted before about how messed up 2012 has been.
But a lot of good stuff happened too.
{like getting engaged and becoming an aunt!}

But this summer, just seriously SUCKED.
I am not a huge fan of ridiculously hot weather anyway, so the abnormally high temps were already a bad sign.  Then, I got to find out what it's like to be the primary money maker of a household.  All while dealing with more frequent migraines.
{news flash: my migraines have a tendency to be stress related.  being stressed about money = headaches = missing work = less money = more stress = more headaches. no. bueno.}

I was seriously miserable, all the time.  I didn't feel like hanging out with my fiance (who i resented at that point...as i figured he'd at least step up and do some housework being at home all day, but instead slept all day and spent all night going out and about and having fun, while i got the brunt of everything else.), I didn't want to see my soon to be stepdaughter (again, resentment, because i always felt like i had to constantly step up to the plate to fill in when my fiance had to sleep late from working at the bar his one night a week), I just didn't want to do anything. With anyone. Ever.

And there was fighting.  Lots of it.  And frustrations.  And times where I just wanted to curl up in bed and not get up.  And times where I just wanted to be done with the whole relationship because it was too stinkin' hard.  

But that's not what love is about.
Love means you're there, even when the going gets tough.
Love means you can scream and fight all day long, but you're still going to be there the next day.
Love means helping the people you love when they're going through a hard time, not giving up because it's too hard for you to deal with.
Love means everything.

And I've loved my fiance for longer than I can even remember.
We've been through a lot in the time we've been together, and shared so much of our lives in friendship before that even.  Sometimes, love is about sacrifice.

At the end of the day, even though sometimes things are really shitty, and we might not always have enough money to go to dinner or a movie or whatever...or the house might be a bit cluttered...or I may or may not be a little bit bigger than I was before...
We have love.

And sometimes love is really all you need.

18 October 2012

coffee talk {let's talk about...}

1. Let's talk about ink: Do you have tattoos? How many?? 
uh, yeah.  a lot. workin' on a half sleeve of my left arm (flowers, sewed up heart...) & right calf (mermaid & sea)...plus the seahorse on my back, "hearbreaker" on my ankle, key & lock on my foot, "betty" {a sugar skull & crossbones. i have named her betty.} on my wrist, butterfly on my butt, koi fish & peony on my stomach... & nope, I don't regret a single one.
part of my eventual half sleeve...basically flowers on my shoulder down my bicep at the moment.

lock & key and heartbreaker. dude, top of the foot HURTS LIKE A BAD MOFO. do not get tattooed there, especially if it's your first. I am not exaggerating. much.
2. Let's talk about hair styles: Bangs, do you have them, want them, or trying to grow them out? What about side bangs? 
bangsssss.  Ahhh  my love/hate relationship with bangs.  When I was a kid, I had side bangs always.  My dad used to cut my hair.  So, THICK side bangs.  In 7th grade, this kid who shall remain nameless told me it looked like I had a dead animal on my head.  So, I grew them out.  Eventually, I got better side bangs.  Currently, they're too much effort so I have no bangs.
3. Let's talk about work: Without getting specific with a company name, what do you do? What did you want to be when you grew up when you were young? 
I work for a company my father & uncles own.  I am an inventory specialist.  (uh, i count shizzzz all day. woo hoo)  When I was little, I really wanted to be an "architect", like Indiana Jones.  Yeah, eventually I realized the word was archaeologist.  And involved finding bones of people and such sometimes.  And that I wouldn't get to carry a bullwhip or do any of the fun things he does.  So... yeah.
me at work. hiding behind machinery. hahhhh.
4. Let's talk about friends: Do you find it easier or more difficult to meet new friends as an adult? Do you have what you'd consider 'blog friends'? What about IRL (in real life) friends?
I have made some new friends as an adult.  Most of my core group of friends though I've had pretty much through my school years.  I'm not a naturally outgoing person (no one believes this but it's true), so most of the friends I have made as an adult are thanks to my wonderful fiance, who has an amazing core group of friends as well :) 
I definitely have some awesome bloggy friends!  And a couple I even know IRL :)
5. Let's talk about Social media: Android or iPhone? Twitter or Facebook?
I have no smart phone.  Don't even get me started.
And I have never opened a twitter account.  I do have FB, though I've considered deleting it many times. 
Linking up again with Nat :)
Coffee Talk with Natalie Blair

17 October 2012

I hate it when...

Just found this funny link up here, and I figured I'd have to chime in, cuz I love her blog and thought it'd be fun :)

I hate it when...

...I accidentally set the alarm for PM instead of AM, and then wake up late and have to scramble to get ready in a rush.

...I am about to use up the last of my precious and discontinued (damn you Avon) hand cream, only to squirt half of what's left on my chest somehow.  Seriously, how does that happen?

...I can't remember where my keys are, and have searched frantically through my purse twenty times...only to find them. In. My. Purse.

...I spend hours cleaning the whole living room and putting my fiance's stuff into specific bins so it'll be easier for him to put away properly...only to have him open the bins and spread the stuff all around the living room again! (I know you're reading this - I'm talking about your darn Heroclix!! haha)

...I have finished eating my lunch and am still hungry, but have no dollars or change to buy food from the vending machines.

16 October 2012

i am not a minimalist.

In fact, I might be the polar opposite.
An obsessive and slightly materialistic person, really.

I have a tendency to manifest this materialism {if that's not a word it should be} in my ability to buy myself {and others} the best, nicest, biggest brand etc of whatever item it is I happen to buy.  Including clothes, electronics, even cleaning products and toiletries.  Yes, I only buy Dawn dish soap {hey, they help clean up animals hurt in oil spills!}, and absolutely have to buy Swiffer dusters.
Do I need bath soaps and body lotions that cost $10, $20...$50??  Yes. Yes indeedy I do.

With my ability to shop for the best deal {you guys, I can find legit Coach and Dooney & Bourke for like $10. brand new. no joke.} and my tendencies toward {hoarding} being a bit of a pack rat, my house is a wee bit cluttered.  All of this is ok.  I have found that FlyLady website {best internet find to date}, so I'm able to carefully go through my belongings and de-stash the many things I no longer need, want, or use.

My most wonderful fiance...is also not a minimalist.  Also a bit of a pack rat.  Feeling the need to cling on to any and everything that may at some point prove useful.
He gets this from his father, as I get it from mine.
{when we helped his father to move into his new home, we discovered he owns 13 chainsaws. over 30 coleman lanterns. 6 boat motors. countless childhood memorabilia from my fiance's childhood. a record collection any hipster would be thrilled to own.  and cases of...projector porn. no joke. we have it now. legit.}
So clearly, some stuff is going to need to go out of our house before we can even begin to register for wedding gifts.  In preparation for this, I have begun to clear out everything {yeah i know i said it already} including at least three garbage bags full of clothing that got sent off to the Salvation Army store.
My fiance got rid of...4 shirts.
He keeps his clothes in a spare bedroom, and his shirts are on a double wardrobe rack {like a double sided clothes rack in a store, but shorter}.  Yesterday, after coming out of the shower, we realized...the whole rack collapsed.  Yes, my fiance has enough clothing {these were only shirts!!!!!} to break a clothes rack.

We might need some help de-stashing.

15 October 2012

things you should know about me.

I am obsessed with The Walking Dead.
Yes, the comics & the show.
(also, some guy yelled at me at Barnes & Noble one day about this. well, not yelled. schooled me really.  as i was referring to the comic collections as "graphic novels" when i knew i should have been saying "trade paperbacks". one is a separate story, one is a collection of previously printed comics.  yes i know this. yes i am a nerd. whatev.)
I have a window cling poster of Rick Grimes pointing his pistol at whoever is looking at the poster.
It is in my front window.
Thus I see it every time I walk onto the porch.
Clearly, being the person who went to the trouble of stealing getting the comic shop guy to give me the poster, and affixing said poster to my window, I should know it's there, yes?

This does not prevent me from being freaked out by "the weird guy in my living room" on a semi-daily basis.

Also, can't they just kill off Laurie already?  Sheeeesh.

11 October 2012

coffee talk {all about the food}

linking up with Nat :):
Natalie Blair

1. Pancakes or waffles?
French toast.  Not huge on either pancakes OR waffles…dunno why.  Although, pancakes with whipped cream & strawberries are quite delish!

2. What is your go-to meal?
I have a lot of meals I make with regularity!  I’ve been trying to make homemade meals a lot more often lately (better for our health AND bank account lol) and my faves (as of this week haha) are lasagna and chicken enchiladas.  And I shall now share my new enchilada recipe because it is {frankly} the best food ever.  Except my lasagna. Which has no real recipe because I never use exact measurements of anything.
Chicken “Enchiladas” 
You will need:
3-4 chicken breasts, cooked & shredded (boil ‘em for like 20 minutes, throw them in the stand mixer with the paddle on for a couple minutes and you’re set!)
1 packet taco seasoning
Approx 1 cup of sour cream
Taco sauce
1 can diced green chilies (9 oz or something)
Lots of cheese.
Soft tortilla shells
Put shredded chicken with some oil in a big frying pan, with taco seasoning & water (like how you’d make taco meat if using beef).  Once mixture is thickened, put chicken in big bowl.  Add ¾ cup of sour cream (or more, to taste), some taco sauce (just pour it on in there), can of chilies, and cheese.  Mix it all up.  It will look gross.  Take reserved sour cream & remaining taco sauce and mix that up.  Then put like a tablespoon of that mix and spread it around a fajita shell.  Plop some of your chicken mix in the middle, with MORE cheese.  Roll it up like a burrito, placing folded side down on a greased 13x9 pan (this is easier if  you line the pan with tinfoil.  Spray cooking spray on it…once you’re done with the meal, you throw out the foil and have less of a mess to clean up. Win win win).  Bake in a 375 degree oven for 25-30 minutes.  Presto – friggin delish.

3. What is your "must have" snack while watching a movie/TV show?
chips & dip.  Dip = Bison French Onion dip.  If you don’t live in Western New York, you have NEVER had real chips & dip.  Sorry, but it’s true.

4. What is your guilt food(the kind where you are sad, lonely, etc. )?
Chocolate. And chips & dip.  I could pretty much eat chips & dip all day erry day.
5. What kind of food do you eat that is so disgusting to others and you are embarrassed to tell? Come on! Fess up!
Actually most food I eat is similar to what a picky five year old would eat.  I don’t like too many weird food combos…the closest to “gross” would be French fries with blue cheese dip.  (seriously, any combination of a dip is my weakness…legit) (so I say “legit” like a lot. A lot a lot.  And every time I’m like “too legit, too legit to quit”. What’s up MC Hammer??)

10 October 2012

why halloween is stupid.

-it turns little children into beggars.
-you have to buy candy to give to the miniature beggars.
-upon buying the candy, you realize how cheap it is and decide to buy some for yourself.
-no little beggars come to your house.
-you now have ten pounds of candy.
-you eat it.
-you get fat.

-also, CLOWNS.

the end.

09 October 2012

keep your head up.

For a while now, it seems like I've been miserable and depressed more often than I've been happy and content.  This whole year has been a  roller coaster of extremes.  Between losing loved ones, gaining a nephew, dealing with being the primary money earner, and getting engaged, my emotions are all over the place.

Being an adult is hard.
Staying afloat when you just want to bury your head in the sand is hard.
Dealing with constant stress and anxiety is hard.

I'm sick of this depression hanging over my head.  And it's only bound to get worse as the seasons change and we get even less hours of daylight.

A couple weeks ago, I had a full blown panic attack at the prospect of having my future mother in law over for dinner.  I freaked at my fiance for not checking with me first, because our house was such a mess I was embarassed to have her over.  Now just to be clear, my house is nowhere near being "hoarders" worthy.  There aren't random piles of garbage lying around or anything.  But between my fiance and I, we own a lot of...STUFF.  Between laundry lying about, my scrapbooking supplies, his Heroclix characters, our books & comic books, his daughter's toys & games, DVD's...seriously, the whole damn house seems like it's hit with a friggin tornado half the time.  We have run out of room for our stuff already.  And every day, it's even harder to deal with.  I don't want to live in a trashy house.  I don't want to be embarassed to have people over without notice.  I don't want to have to marathon clean every time I DO have someone come over.  It's friggin' ridiculous.  To top it off, it's only gotten this bad because I went on housework strike over the summer while my fiance was pretty much out of work.  (My logic - if he's not bringing in money, he might as well clean since he's home all day.  In practice - the house is trashed.)

Combined with my failure to lose any weight while I attempted to diet and exercise (yeah, eff that. sweating sucks, i don't care what anyone says.), it makes for one miserable me.

And then, at the end of September, I found this website called FlyLady.
Honestly, reading it...it seems like the most ridiculous thing ever.
Like I need someone to tell me how to clean shit.

But...apparently I do.  And since signing up to be a part of the group...my kitchen is clean every day.  I have so many clean clothes my closet is over flowing. I've gotten rid of at least 3 garbage bags of old and too small clothes (given to Salvation Army).  I've found several Christmas presents I forgot I had (yeah, as in from LAST Christmas. WTF) (also, one was this ziploc vacuum sealer for freezer stuff that I've been searching for for MONTHS because I knew I had one and lost it...arghhh).  AND I've made a nice homecooked dinner for myself and my fiance (and his daughter on the days we get her) every single day.  All of this without feeling stressed out or anything.  I feel happy. Content. Accomplished.

If any of you struggle with housework like I do, I seriously recommend checking out this site.  It is an excellent source of routines, tips, and tricks, and it WORKS.
Seriously.  The whole idea is that your house didn't get dirty in a day, and it won't get clean in a day either.  So each day, you work a bit at a time, and slowly but surely, you establish your routines and before you know it, you're doing things without concious thought and effort.

07 October 2012

Simple Sunday Recipe

Well, technically autumn arrived a couple weeks ago, but this weekend it seems to have arrived with a vengeance.  Cool weather, damp & rain, and the most colorful leaves of the year!
In an effort to warm up my house a little without turning my furnace even higher (yeah, it's already on, pathetic) I decided Sunday is baking day.
And because I love simple and delicious recipes over all else, I bring you this:
Simple Two Ingredient Pumpkin Cookies.
Easy. Fast. Low calorie. YUMMY.
What more could you ask for?


This is what you need:
1 - Boxed Spice cake mix
1 - 15oz can pumpkin (ya know, the Libby's kind or whatever)

What you do:
Heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Mix together boxed cake mix and pumpkin by hand until well blended (this takes a few minutes and it looks like it won't be enough pumpkin to work, but trust me, it works!)
Spoon mixture onto greased cookie sheets (there's no oil in these, you NEED to grease the cookie sheets or they stick!).
Bake for 10-14 minutes depending on cookie size (mine took about 13 minutes)
If you'd like, mix up a small bit of confectioner's sugar with a bit of milk for a simple glaze to top the cookies.