Join me for a cup of coffee?

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This is the most awake I could muster until the cup was empty. Someone woke me up at 7am to play with LOL dolls and ride bikes on a no alarm day.

How are you? Thank you so much for moving this to an afternoon decaf cup! I had an appointment this morning and couldn’t make it. The appointment went really well.

I try to drink water throughout the day so I’m still sipping on the coffee from this morning. What’s in your cup?

Can I tell you that you smell good? What are you wearing?

What have you been up to?

Life continues to be a little nutso but the end of this bit of it is in sight. There’s about two more weeks of the crazy work stuff. It will wrap up just in time for the girls’ softball seasons to be in full swing.

The other night, it was such a perfect night for ball. The sun was shining, there was some breeze but not too much and it was just warm enough to be wonderful, but not warm enough to be buggy or sweaty. I know the nights won’t stay this way, but I’ll take (and enjoy!) them when we get them.

I’m also really excited because we planted some flowers, are going to go get a few more plants this weekend, and the lilies Aunt Liz gave us last year from her plants are up and sprouting! I have no idea what will actually grow, but I’m looking forward to finding out.

Do you have plans for the weekend? We have a whirlwind of stuff Saturday including plant shopping, a memorial service, and errands. Sunday will be Easter with the kiddos, and likely 45 other things. I’m debating yoga, but I’ll be there alone. Don’t worry, I won’t do anything crazy while I’m there alone.

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From here, you use your core muscles to pull you back into a plank. That part isn’t fun, but it’s worth it. 

 

Hopefully, I’ll be busy enough to be a little distracted. I miss Nanny like woah. It’s been 5 years now and Easter is hard. Really, really hard.

Maybe I’ll find some gf ziti and make some sauce. Or drink some vodka and Diet Coke. Who knows.  (Not likely the vodka and Diet Coke. That’s kind of gross.)

I’m trying not to do too much shopping, but if I find a sale, I should probably take advantage of it like Nanny would have. Maybe buy all the colors I like. Yes, yes, I should. Or, maybe find a puppy to adopt? (Kidding!)

Well, I have to hustle my bustle. I hope you have a great weekend that’s filled with the people you want to see and the food you want to eat.

 

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Honey Garlic Tuna

2019-04-08_02-29-05We eat quite a bit of chicken in our home. Mostly, it’s because I like to drop stuff in a marinade and make a side while Nik puts protein on the grill.

But, after biting into a half raw chicken sammich at a restaurant Saturday, I suspect it’ll be awhile before I’m ready to eat that again.

Nik wanted ribs last night for dinner. However, I wasn’t feeling them after teaching and participating in a two hour yoga session, so I picked up some frozen tuna steaks instead. Oh gosh, I’m so glad I did. (Food choice after yoga is a whole other post!)

I did a quick marinade of apple cider vinegar, a splash of olive oil, a few to several scoops of crushed garlic from the jar in the fridge, a bit of cayenne pepper, a big-ish dollop of honey, a bit of onion powder, and some garlic pepper spice (Garlic, pepper, salt and a bit of sugar. It’s from Ocean State Job lot for about a dollar and pretty wonderful.) Then, I put some warm water in it, mixed it around, put the frozen tuna steaks in the marinade, put the top on the container, and let the tuna thaw in the sink. It doesn’t take long to thaw and I’m convinced it marinates better when you start it frozen.

After an hour or so, Nik cooked them on the grill for me and I paired it with a green salad with similar dressing. I managed to eat half of the tuna steak and put the second half in the fridge with the left over salad.

Original? Probably not, delicious? Absolutely. (Something I’ve learned? Taste the marinade as you go BEFORE you put the stuff in it. That’s how I knew it was about 10 gentle taps of the cayenne pepper. Some people don’t think of this. If you don’t like the marinade, you prob won’t like the meat when it’s done.)

Today, I ate the second half as tuna salad for lunch. It was a little sweet, a little spicy, a little tangy and quite good. I just wish I’d had thought to chop some onion.

Next time.

Guess what?! And no, not “chicken butt”

haven't spent money on craft 032819 I could perhaps have titled this post, “The things I didn’t buy this year, ” because see that there? It’s true. I did replace a box of cards for snail mail and purchase 3 skeins of yarn to finish projects, but I’m being so good I don’t even know myself!

(The three skeins were on sale so before tax, it was just under $10.)

I’ve even made progress on some of my to do list!

(And mending, goodness the mending of clothing in my house! Favorite socks, pants, hoodies and I can’t forget the snowmobile cover. How they get holes in some of the places is beyond me. I fix it all.)

Part of it is that I just don’t go to the store because I’m not really taking lunch breaks. I know that’s not actually the best case scenario because I need to get away from my desk, but I just haven’t had the time to leave the office lately.

I’ve also been doing a lot with what I have on hand. (The kids Valentine’s Day treats coming soon!) I have a lot on hand so it’s not that hard. Ha. I bought a few things for holiday decorations like Valentine’s Day and Spring/Easter, but the kids seem to get a kick out of having decorations for the holidays and deciding where things go.

So yeah, go me!

The Good Stuff: Um, lately

Fotor_155363258325712There’s a lot of crap out there. Crappy news, crappy people. Really crappy moments. I think it’s important to pay attention to the good things. Remember them and carry those with you or the bad things keep weighing you down.

Besides, when you look for the good things, you find more good things and maybe life isn’t quite so bad.

If it’s not your style (yet, because you can totally retrain your brain), I challenge you to find one good thing about today – even if it’s something tiny. (Also a former CIA analyst shared some coping strategies for the bad stuff.)

Life has been busier than normal with my boss on maternity leave, a presentation that wasn’t going to write itself, lots of b-ball to finish (and the start of softball), viruses, etc and I wasn’t able to make all of that, my sanity, and this space a priority so something had to give. But, now I can breathe again (mentally and physically), I so thought I’d pop in and share some really great things that have been going on. It’s been awhile!

Moments to make me smile:

  • Wizard of Oz on the big screen and sushi with Sue!
  • The quiet moments the girls reach for hugs or snuggles.
  • Sending snail mail
  • Successful Valenties’s for the kiddos
  • Adventure days with E
  • Irish Nachos
  • Coloring
  • Gluten free black licorice
  • Sharing a bit of Boston and the NEA with the kiddos and Nik
  • Having great conversations with kiddos about what I need to know for my job.
  • Having the right answers
  • Snowmobiling
  • Reading 6 books in two weeks.
  • Nerding out with N (science, Harry Potter, artsy stuff, and Rebel Girls)
  • Productive travel for work
  • Seeing E take to softball
  • A perfect glass of pinot grigio over ice
  • Basketball fun but also that it’s done
  • Amazing conversations you never expected
  • Making “mom” friends – and I’ve met some wonderful people out in the country!
  • Checking things off to-do lists
  • Finding the perfect gifts
  • Seeing Adri and meeting her grandmother!
  • Having a safe car for driving in the snow
  • Aerial yoga and being invited to coteach occasionally
  • Getting a project piece out and being done with it for now

Good reads:

I’ve also read the following books that I enjoyed so you can expect reviews for them:

  • Queen of Klutz
  • I Owe You One
  • Pretty in Punxstawney

I’ll likely lump the ones I didn’t love into one post.

Favorite pics:
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You can see more pictures on my Instagram.

Podcasts you might like:

I’ve really branched out what I listen to in the car these days! (I still listen to My Favorite Murder, Last Podcast on the Left, Smart Mouth, and Gone, but I’ve added a few more.)

  • Mobituaries with Mo Rocca
  • Stuff You Should Know
  • Ask A Manager

Music to feed my soul:

There hasn’t been anything that sticks out video wise. Mostly we just have Google play a station these days. I have been listening to a lot of 90s on 9 and Pop Rock in the car. Lots of fun memories and sing-alongs!

Do you have anything new to share?

How about you? What good things do you have for the first quarter of the year?

Join me for a cup of coffee?

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Paused on the swing shot!

Actually, it’s more like tea time. I’m having some Constant Comment because I’m out of mint and it’s delicious. I wish I had some cookies to go with it a nice shortbread or lemon crinkle – but I’m doing WW now and not sure what the kiddos want to do for dinner so I’ll skip them for now.

It’s been a little insane around here. Our boss is out so we’re all doing our jobs and hers too. It’s easily added 30% to my desk if not more. I don’t say that to complain, just a statement of fact…and where I am if I’m not available.

So, what’s in your cup?

I don’t know if you saw it, but I’m back at aerial yoga class and I LOVE IT. Yes, there are some limitations I’m working on, but man it’s fun. I like it so much I skip my Sunday nap to go!

We also got a new toy for the snow. Nik found a super duper deal on a snowmobile so we’ve been playing with that when we can. It’s been warm and raining for a couple of days, so most of the snow is gone again, but it was fun. Hopefully, we’ll get some more snow before the end of the winter to go playing in.

This weekend we have 2 basketball games, Valentine’s making, and hopefully lots of fun happens!  I have an aerial yoga class and homework for work, too. There’s a good chance I’ll sit by the fire with a glass of wine and the month’s worth of legal changes I need to review on Sunday. And taxes. Actual taxes, not you know taxes. Tis the season!

What’s new in your world?

 

Five Things

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I sent this to my SIL w/ the caption
“{Yet I} don’t care about it
when I drink the wine.”
We had a good chuckle.

If you’re one of my new visitors (Hi), I’m sharing five current “things” with you: Recent challenges, triumphs, funnies, OMG, and a question.)

It’s been a bit since we’ve talked about Five Things, hasn’t it? I’m not writing as much as I’d like to lately because it’s hard to find time to put fingers to keyboard. Lately, they’ve been anxiety crocheting and coloring in my free minutes.

The anxiety crocheting is at least productive! I’ve finished a couple of projects and used up some other yarn. Go me!

I still haven’t purchased any craft supplies. GASP – That’s a whole month! (Other than one skein of yarn I needed to finish a project.)

The anxiety is due to some challenges I’ve been facing. I can mention my jeans being a little tight from pizza and sugar, my butt and legs being a little numb from bleachers, and trying to keep warm. It’s been COLD recently. Hopefully, Sunday brings warmer temps, but it’ll also bring another challenge – melting snow and ice. Wheeee

(First world problems, right? I’m really quite lucky and I know that. While I can say there have been other challenges and frustrations lately, they’re not blog fodder for today. Besides, they’re not actually my responsibility to fix for the most part. It is only my responsibility to decide how to react to them, right?)

But as is life, for every challenge, there has been at least one triumph to share. While sometimes it’s hard not to take frustration sources personally, I’ve been trying hard to do just that. It’s more of a shuffle or chacha than a linear progression, but I’m making progress.

Admittedly, laughter gets me through frustration. A text to a co-worker about a mutually shared ridiculous experience, comments the kids have made, the thoughts I have in my head randomly mid day and share with friends, and fb memes. I can’t pinpoint a particular moment to share without a great deal of context, but there have been a lot of laughs lately.

Oh! I started listening to Mobituaries wtih Mo Rocca (so good!) and the Conan O’Brien episode of My Favorite Murder (really funny) His first murder fascination? Abraham Lincoln.

Some of them get into the OMG category, as in OMG I can’t believe XYZ happened! These moments leave you scratching your head and sending off messages to the Inner Council  in disbelief and confusion or flat out frustration/anger.

At this particular moment, the most OMG thing is how damn cold it is. I know it’s winter, but the negative temps are getting to be a bit much! My hands and skin are paying a serious price. I might have to break down and do that moisturizing thing. Harumph.

Also I just listened to the first two parts of Last Podcast on the Left’s Josef Mengele episodes. There’s one part left they haven’t released yet but the first two parts were so OMG they had to give us “Home Improvement” facts to break up the bad.

I guess my question for you is what are your Five today? Also, what do you like in your lasagna?

And it was lovely

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“Those boots are wicked” – Dude at the store
“Good thing I’m going to see Wizard of Oz” – Me

I’m not a weekend recapper buy nature unless you’re Adri and its Monday  morning, but there were some really lovely parts to my weekend I’d like to share.

I had some things to do Friday and the girls got out of school early so I took the day off. I ran some errands and then picked E up for an adventure. (N was spending the day with their mom.)

E is quite the little adventure buddy. Most days, she’s up for just about anything – especially if there’s a bakery or donut involved. If I played our cards right, there would be both!

In the car, we chatted, sang, and she told me about her friends at school, what she learned that day, and who threw up that week. It was lovely. (Mostly.)

Fotor_154897264547082First we were “surprising” Nik at work to take him to lunch. (It was a “surprise” because E thought he didn’t know we were coming. He totally did, but it was lovely for her to think we pulled off a surprise!)

E felt like a big shot at his work and got a new mini flashlight! Then we hit up Target, the pet store for crickets, and the gluten free bakery. Such fun!

We read the signs and labels together, tried on shoes and found toys to buy. (Okay, I was reading and she was picking out letters she knew and making their sounds. She’s 5 so that’s pretty good!)

Before she fell asleep on the way  home, I heard her little voice from the back seat, “Thank you for the super fun day and cookies, Courtahney.”

It was lovely.

The rest of the night was low key. We had dinner, they played and it was an early to bed kind of night.

Saturday brought a no alarm day because basketball wasn’t until later. We just hung out, played games and with toys, and otherwise chilled out. I don’t always play how they want me to because I don’t know the story lines they’re working from, but it’s lovely they ask me to, so I will.

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Sporting the bacon and eggs socks.

Basketball was fun. The girls were pretty evenly matched against the other team so both teams had to play smart and work for it. It was lovely to N and her team pull off a win.

The kiddos were exhausted so after getting cleaned up it was time for a movie and bed.

I was crocheting on the couch between loads of laundry in the quiet of a sleeping house. Reflecting on the kind moments from the day, folding laundry and sipping my tea, I thought about how lovely it was.

Fotor_154897212519048Sunday morning had it’s moments of tension getting everyone ready to go and packed up. I’m normally not getting ready at the same time as the kiddos, but I had a girls day date with Sue I had to be on the road for!

I love lunch dates with Sue. She’s wonderful, kind, funny, and thinks I’m funny. After sushi, we went to see Wizard of Oz on the big screen! It’s one of my favorite movies.

The rest of the evening wasn’t as lovely. However, by the time Nik and I went to bed, we’d sorted it out – which in itself, is lovely.

I know there were moments over the weekend which were less lovely. Overheard snide comments directed at me, cold weather, ice, snow squalls, misunderstandings, ill fitting jeans making me feel bad, and what not… but the weekend? It was, really, all quite lovely.

A quick word on kindness…

2019 kindnessThere have been moments where I’ve been struggling with something and someone was kind.

People have offered a kind word or two when it seemed everyone else was telling me how terrible I was.

A stranger rushed to hold the door for me when I had bags, an umbrella and was fumbling with my keys.

A little boy shouted, “Miss! You dropped your money.” across a parking lot when it was literally everything I had until payday.

Little angels have been put in my path to bring me moments of calm, warmth, or a second to breathe.

Words of encouragement from friends and family, acknowledgment of a job well done from my boss, a shared laugh about a ridiculous situation, a smile, or any of the thousands of moments people have sprinkled some kindness into my life.

I aspire to be that person who offers a kind word or hand to whoever my gut says might need it. Or basically whoever I run across because let’s face it, we all need it sometimes. I don’t think about how it will come back to me and I almost never tell anyone about the things I’ve done because that’s now why I do it.

I do it because it’s the right thing to do, to take a moment to offer a smile, say a kind word or two, or help. To choose to offer kindness again and again.

I’d like to thank the Universe for the kind people who were put in my path this past week, the ones who chose to be kind. It wasn’t a hard week, but it was heart warming to know there are others out there who are kind when they don’t have to be.

Thank you for the reminder, Universe. And thank you to the kind people. May your kindness be returned to you in spades.

Join me for a cup of coffee?

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Wow I look tired.
I’m not that tired, I swear.

Brrr it’s cold outside!  The other day I made the mistake of not getting gas for my car when it was 25*F and the next day when I HAD to, it was 10*F. Will I learn my lesson next time? Who knows?! Life is a mystery.

Thanks so much for bringing me a cup of decaf! I used to think decaf was for people we didn’t like, but then my doctor made me cut back. When I started drinking more it again I felt the difference in the second or third cup. Now, unless I need it, I stick with decaf after the first travel mug. What can I say? I love the taste and warmth of magic bean water!

What’s in your cup?

What’s new? I’ve been working a lot and watching a lot of basketball. N is playing on two teams, one for the school and also a local travel one. It’s a lot of bleacher time! I’m lucky that some of the parents are from softball so they’re not complete strangers. It’s also a lot of fun to watch the kids get better and grow. This is my second season watching the school’s team and some of these girls have made real progress in skills, aggression, and teamwork. It’s so cool.

So are you ready for the weekend? I have to run to the store either this evening or in the morning because of the impending storm. I fully anticipate the store will be a balagan (big hot mess) and I will hate life for a bit while I’m there or after I leave. But the store Out in the Country can be like a box of chocolates – you never know what you’re going to get.

Hopefully, it’ll be nice people.