Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Yall...life is hard...

Let me see, let me see....

We might as well call July what it is.  Vacation month for the blog.

First there was the weekend of the 4th.

Then there was the recovery from that weekend.

Then I got the dulcimer and lost an entire week just playing the darn thing every night.

And this week I'm getting ready to go to Natchez for the weekend which means I'm washing clothes, taking clothes to the cleaners, getting stuff together for Allie, and hopefully deep cleaning my car because at this point we're past embarrassment here.  It looks like there was a cheerios explosion in my back seat.

And on top of everything I decided that I needed a new dress for this trip, because I do this EVERY SINGLE TIME.  I look at my closet, hate everything, and either end up staying up late every night sewing or making a mad dash to the store the day before and buying stuff in a frenzy.

I am insane.  We all know this.  Move on.

Hope you are all having a great week lovelies!  

Thursday, July 17, 2014

A quick clip...

I have a new toy!  It's a mountain dulcimer and I am having a ball playing around on it. This is my first song, Hot Cross Buns. Everyone has to start somewhere right?  Maybe it's not too terrible. And thank you to everyone that has checked on me. I finally cooked and ate something tonight and am feeling okay. Happy weekend my lovelies!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Feeling a little like Violet....

Sorry for the continued radio silence yall.  I've been struggling with a little stomach ailment the past couple of days that last night left me feeling like Violet from Willy Wonka.  It's something that flares up from time to time that I developed during pregnancy and though it is a lot better than it was postpartum it still gives me fits every so often.  And yes I have had just about every test known to man and supposedly my gallbladder and all my parts function just fine.  I'm going today to get some probiotics and give my stomach a rest today by sipping on sprite and water and probably having nabs for lunch.  Hope you are all doing well and hopefully I can have something new tomorrow.  If not, well then you know the oompa loompas had to take me back for special treatment.  

Later my lovelies!

Friday, July 11, 2014

Foodie Fridays - Applesauce Muffins

Yall, all I can say about this week was I got lazy last week toward the end with the holiday and this week has been all day 8 hours a day in front of the computer at work with very few breaks and the last thing I wanted to do when I got home was sit back down in front of the computer to blog.  Next week though, we'll get back after it.  I have a lot of stuff in my draft folder that just needs a little polish and a little shine.

Here's a quick recipe though to take you in to your weekend.  I love to make breakfast on the weekend and if you're looking for a quick muffin recipe this one will do the trick.  It makes a super moist muffin and they are not too sweet, just sweet enough.  My baby loves them and all you need is a little pat of butter in the middle right as they come out of the oven to make them perfect.  Hope you enjoy!

Applesauce Muffins

1/2 Cup Butter
1/2 Cup White Sugar
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
1 Egg
1 Teaspoon Vanilla extract
1 Cup Applesauce
2 Cups All Purpose Flour
1/2 Teaspoon Baking Soda
1 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon 
1/2 Cup Chopped Nuts 

In a bowl cream together butter, sugar, egg, and vanilla.  Mix in applesauce.  In a separate bowl combine the flour, baking soda, and ground cinnamon, slowly add to creamed mixture 1/2 cup at a time.  Mix well until all dry ingredients are fully incorporated and lastly fold in the nuts.  

Bake in paper lined muffin tins for 20 minutes at 350 degrees until muffins are golden brown and a toothpick inserted comes out clean.  

Makes about 1 dozen.  

Have a great weekend my lovelies!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

A Not So Wordless Wednesday - Body Image

Let's get real here for a minute lovelies.  I've been reading all theses posts about body issues and thought I would weigh in (ha!) with my two cents.

This is going to be hard for me.   I've had this post sitting in my draft folder since last year so I hope this flows in some sort of coherent fashion.

Okay, I'm going to ramble.  Let's all just accept this.

I have body image issues. Have from way back when. 

At 13 years old I was 5'7", wore a size 11 shoe, and was clumsy, uncoordinated, and geeky.  Let's just say I was not a happy camper in junior high through high school.

But I was good at stuff, school, singing, horses, cooking, sewing, drawing, painting, and so-so at piano.  I focused on all the things I was good at and tried to push the fact that I couldn't wear the styles that were popular at the time, could not find cute shoes, and was generally unhappy with how I looked out of my mind. I know clothes and shoes are shallow and vain and completely unimportant in the grand scheme of things but to a teenager they are important.  You want to fit in.  You want to be accepted.  

Still though, years later, I struggle.  It's hard for me to loose weight, always has been.  I eat right, but exercise right now is kind of here and there and I have to work out to loose weight. 

There are days when I'm happy with myself.  A good fitting pair of jeans, a rocking pair of boots, and a ponytail usually make me happy. Is there anything better than a good fitting pair of jeans?  I ask you.
As I get older I seem to find these moments of happiness closer together, because most people aren't looking at you, and honestly could care less.  They are too busy obsessing about what they look like.

I'll never be a size 2.  I'll always be awkward and uncoordinated.  My feet are never going to shrink.

What I am though, I hope, is a good daughter, a good wife, and hopefully a good Momma.  I wanna raise a daughter that thinks she kicks ass, is perfect just the way she is, and has the confidence to find what makes her happy.  My parents did that for me, continue to do that for me, my hubby thinks I'm hot, and that is better and more important than fitting into a smaller size.

I would much rather be a strong woman, mentally and physically than a tee-tiny waif any day.  Momma can't buck hay or tote feed if she weighs less than a wet noodle.  And you know what?  I'm sick and tired of people that say you have to improve yourself.  What if I'm happy with me right now.  What if it's taken me better than a year to get back to a place where I'm healthy mentally?  Anyone with any sense knows you have to be right on the inside before you can do any work on the outside.  Who are you to say that I have to loose a certain amount of weight or sleep more or drink more water, or eat more fruit, or whatever?  I eat well.  Always have.  I don't eat processed food.  I cook at home most of the time for heaven's sake. You all can see that from the blog.  Furthermore since I've been pregnant french fries and a big greasy hamburger are something I can only have maybe once or twice a month or I get sick as a dog.  I'm not perfect.  I'm only going to be on this earth a short time.  So yes, sometimes I eat the cookie dammit.  

Don't assume because of what I look like on the outside I'm unhealthy on the inside.  My blood pressure is always perfect.  All through my pregnancy it was perfect.  I literally had nurses double check with two different machines to make sure.  My blood sugar is always good.  My cholesterol is good.  And believe it or not I was anemic a few years ago and told to eat more red meat.  I'm over 200 pounds and I was anemic.  

I'm a big girl.  I know this.  I have been since I was very young.  I looked like a third grader in my kindergarten picture because I was a foot taller than everyone else.  I was wearing a ladies size 8 shoe in third grade.  I've been wearing a ladies 11/12 shoe, men's 9 since I was thirteen.   I wear a size 11 ring.  And here's the thing, most charts say I should weigh at the most 153 pounds.  At thirteen, it was a good year so sue me, I weighed 134 pounds, wore a size 34 waist Wrangler jean and was a lean, mean, barrel racing machine.  You're going to tell me at 32 I should weigh 20 pounds more than I did then?  How ridiculous is that?!!  It's unrealistic and unobtainable.

Now look, I need to loose some weight.  This is a indisputable fact.  I put on a good bit over the years at my prior employment primarily due to the fact I was miserable.  Then I had a baby.  Then I changed jobs.

And excuse after excuse.

But its the honest facts of life.  I'm trying and most will tell you I'm not near as puffy as I was.  I look better and feel better.  I didn't gain this weight over a short period of time and it's going to take me a while to loose it.  My body was trying to protect me from all the stress I was under and with my genetics that means my body puts on weight around the midsection.  It's called visceral fat.  It's a medical fact.  Look it up.  I'd love to be about 190 again.  I know that seems heavy to most people but that would put me in a 36/38 waist Wrangler and I would be happy to be that size the rest of my life.  

So ladies, all I have to say is love yourself.  I'm guilty as all the rest of hating my body.  Hating that I'm not thin.  Hating myself for being stressed out and having a cookie when I should have a glass of water.  Hating that I don't come home and work out for an hour.  Hating myself for eating late.  Hating myself for sitting down and watching tv when I should be up doing something.  You have to love yourself.  You have to find that place within yourself that loves you for you.  No matter what anyone else thinks.  You have to think of yourself as worthwhile.  No matter your shape.  No matter your weight.


Love yourself.  Don't let this western world tell you you're not worthwhile.  Be healthy.  Be happy.  Love your family and your life.

Four things I aspire to do every day.  I fail miserably on a regular basis.  I still envy the thin girls, the athletic girls, the girls that can simply diet and loose weight, but I continue to try and that's the battle and we can win it.  And you know what?

Gentle reader, you are awesome.  Go forth and conquer today.

Hope you are all having a wonderful day my lovelies.  Each and every one of you.           

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Allie likes spaghetti.....

Just a short video for today.  This is actually from about January I think.  It's amazing how fast they grow.

In other news the new screen is still not here grrr.....

Later my lovelies!

Monday, June 30, 2014

Mexican Mondays - Quick and Easy Steak Fajitas

Mexican Mondays hickory ridge studio

Happy Monday to you!  I've got a quick, simple recipe for you today in this continuing series for Mexican Mondays.  Thank you to those that have let me know you're enjoying the recipes and don't worry, I've got a huge list of things to cover in the months ahead.  You read that right, months.  Today I'm going to share my go to way to fix quick steak fajitas.  There's no complexity involved.   Just quickly dice your vegetables, slice up some steak, and season simply.  You should be able to have this on the table in thirty minutes or less.  Serve with some rice and beans and you have a great midweek meal.  

quick and easy fajitas hickory ridge studio

Quick and Easy Steak Fajitas

1/2 pound of tenderized cube steak 
1 medium onion sliced
1/2 green bell pepper sliced
1/2 yellow or red bell pepper sliced (feel free to use 1 whole green pepper, I know the red and yellow sometimes are a little pricey.)
1 cup of sliced mushrooms 
2 cloves of garlic minced 
3 to 4 tablespoons of my Taco Seasoning Blend or your favorite Mexican seasoning blend 
2 to 3 tablespoons of olive or canola oil
Garnishes of your choice - sour cream, avocado, salsa, guacamole, etc. 
Warm flour or corn tortillas

Take the cube steak and slice against the grain.  This will make sure to take advantage of the tenderness of the cube steak.  I normally slice my steak fairly thin, probably about 3/8" thick or just shy of 1/2".  

quick and easy fajitas hickory ridge studio

In a large saute pan heat a couple of tablespoons of oil and saute your steak until it is brown seasoning with some of the seasoning blend and the minced garlic.  

quick and easy fajitas hickory ridge studio

Once cooked through, remove from the pan.  To the hot pan add the onion, bell peppers, and mushrooms and cook until the vegetables are fork tender seasoning with the remainder of the seasoning blend.  The vegetables I listed above are just a starting point, feel free to add whatever vegetables you like such as fresh tomatoes or zucchini.  And a quick tip, if you feel like the pan is a little dry and you're worried the vegetables are going to stick add a few tablespoons of water.  This will give you a little extra cooking liquid without adding extra fat or making the vegetables greasy.

quick and easy fajitas hickory ridge studio

Once the vegetables are cooked through, add the steak back to the pan and cook a few minutes more to get everything heated through and hot!

quick and easy fajitas hickory ridge studio

And that's it!  This is a very simple version so feel free to change, adapt, and make it your own.  Serve on warm tortillas with your chopping of choice.  The night I made these I was tired and didn't really feel like pulling out all the stops.  I served them with a dollop of sour cream and called it a night.  Hope you enjoy!

quick and easy fajitas hickory ridge studio