Thursday, July 28, 2011

Three Things Thursday

I haven't been a slacker lately, but I have been really busy!  So here's a small sampling of what I've been up to the last week.

1. Last week was Youth Activities Week (YAW) at our church. The kids did various activities during the week that included movie night at the church with popcorn and ice cream floats, camping, paintball, and cooking dinner for themselves and family.  I helped with movie night and cooking on Friday.  On Friday, I started at 10:30 am and finished at 9:30 pm.  We made 18 pies, cooked 35 pounds of potatoes, and 48 pounds of bacon!  Yes, you read that correctly, 48 pounds of bacon.

2. It has been so hot the last few weeks as in 27 days straight of 100+ temps that I'm finding it difficult to make myself run!  Instead, I've been doing lots of cross-training and yoga. 

3. I decided I should be the Queen of Domesticity.  Now that E has graduated and no longer has to wear a uniform, I made her a skirt.  It turned out cute and she loves it!
It's never a good thing for me to be home with time on my hands because I will start cooking!   I love being able to take ingredients, mix them together and make delicous food!  So if you take the right stuff and mix it together in the right way, you will come up with this:

let it sit for a while until it looks like this

and you can turn it in to these for dinner

or these for breakfast!

Yes, my family is quite happy! 

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Wordless Wednesday (Almost!)

Memories of the last few weeks:

C on a backpacking trip.

N getting instructions from the coach.

E and Espn
E's graduation party table. Yes, I did it all myself! 

One of my all time favorites! 

Monday, July 18, 2011

Monday Musings

Last week was busy with VBS and various other things going on! Both of my kids enjoy volunteering at VBS and I'm so thankful that they want to give back as well as be a positive influence on younger kids. 

E and I went to the midnight premier of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2.  We got in line about 9:15 for the 12:15 showing.  It was worth the wait!! It was the 3D version and was incredibly well done.
We did go back today to see the 2D version and it was just as good as the 3D.  We enjoyed it just as much the second time and may see it again!

I cooked quite a bit over the weekend including making homemade pizza.  I also attempted dessert pizza for the first time and it was quite good.  The family was so excited about both that I forgot to take pictures.  :)  Trust me they were both great!

Last night, I tried a new chicken recipe.  We eat lots of chicken and get bored with the same old ways all the time.  For this version, I mixed fresh bread crumbs, parmesan cheese, and melted butter and  put it on top of boneless chicken breasts, baked it covered for 20 minutes at 400 degress, took the cover off and baked it 10 more minutes.  It was fabulous.  We had mixed vegetables in cheese sauce on the side.
This morning was a 50 minute run.  I did manage 5 miles in the 80 degree temp with 85% humidity!  It was a great run! 
If I look like I was dripping, it's because I was!  Now you can see that I actually do get out there and pound the pavement! 

Happy Monday!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Three Things Thursday

1. Somehow, I forgot to plan a meal for dinner tonight!  I always have chicken in the freezer and spinach salad makings in the 'fridge, so it looks like we have a winner.

2. N's old furniture is out of the garage after 3 weeks, my car can finally rest in its spot, and Drago did come home by himself after I accidentally opened the garage door while he was in the garage.  He was very hot and tired when he got home!  He stuck his entire head in his water bowl to cool off and then took a 2 hour nap!

3. Tonight is the midnight premier of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2!  E and I have tickets and we cannot wait to see the ending to a fabulous book and movie series!  The movie starts at 12:15 and I think we are going to get in line about 9 pm after the VBS program at church.  Hopefully, we won't pass out from the heat and miss the movie!  ;-)

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Not Wordless Wednesday

We are working with Vacation Bible School this week so it has been busy getting to church by 8:45 and staying until after noon every day!  N is working with games, E is with the 4 and 5 yr. olds, and I am in the kitchen with snacks.  Our theme is SonSurf Beach Bash so the snacks have a beach/ocean animal theme.  The kindergarten teacher in me loves this kind of stuff!  Here are a couple of examples of what we have had this week.

The Beach: vanilla pudding, graham cracker "sand", and a gummi octupus.  Who wouldn't love that?
Oysters: vanilla wafers, strawberry frosting, gel icing eyes, and a marshmallow "pearl".  These were adorable!

I have actually been running this week even though we are under a heat advisory and the temps are only getting down to the low 80s each night.  Can you say yuck?!  On Monday, I was supposed to run 50 minutes, but cut it to 30 due to some pain in my shin.  Last fall/winter, I had a long bout of Medial Tibial Stress Syndrome, which is a fancy term for really crappy shin splints.  After multiple trips to the general practioner, an MRI, 3 trips to the Sports Medicine doctor, 4 weeks of physical therapy, and almost 6 months off, I don't take any chances!  I think the minor pain was due to running 7 miles that included hills on Saturday.  I did do some speedwork on Monday during my run.  Today, I did 5 miles in 49:30 and was quite happy that I did not have any shin pain.  This is an easy week in my training cycle so my long run this weekend will be 4 miles.  I'm looking forward to a short Saturday morning run! 

Off to plan more VBS snacks and figure out what to feed the family for dinner!

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Wonderful Weekend

What a great weekend!  I did a 7 mile run Saturday morning starting at 6:30.  The temp was 82 degrees with 50% humidity.  Not too bad considering it's almost the middle of July!  I had a third of a powerbar and a glass of water before I left and took gatorade with me in a Nathan handheld bottle.  It worked out great.  I completed my 7 miles in 1:12:57.  I was hoping to finish in under 75 minutes and I met that goal.

C and I went to the Farmer's Market when I got home.  We bought tomatoes and farm-fresh eggs.  Yummy! We went to Dallas to do some shopping and stopped for a snowcone to cool off in this heat.

Wedding cake with cream.  Yes, I splurged after my run!

Dinner on Saturday was tilipia with peppers, onion, garlic, and fresh tomatoes in white wine over lemon couscous.  Light, healthy, and delicious!  When I was training for a marathon, we had this for dinner almost every Friday night before my long runs on Saturday morning.  It's the perfect combination of carbs, protein and fat. 
N requested blueberry muffins so that's what's on the menu for Sunday morning before church.  I used fresh blueberries and a touch of cinnamon.  I substitued non-fat greek yogurt for the sour cream the recipe called for.  It worked out great and saves lots of calories. 
Poor C is having to work this morning, but did get muffins before he left.  Now it is off to church for me and the kids. 

Happy Sunday, everyone!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Fabulous Friday

Today was not a running day, but I did run 5 miles yesterday and have 7 miles on the schedule for tomorrow.  I have been experimenting to find the optimum time for me to run because it is getting so hot here!  106 degrees today!  I am a morning runner so I've been trying earlier as in 5:45 with less sun and more humidity and later, 7:15ish with more sun and less humidity.  After switching back and forth for several days, I've decided I am a less sun, more humidity runner!  I do not like the sun blazing down on me and would much rather watch the sun rise as I head back home. 

This week in food has been about comfort food for the family.  On Wednesday, I made E's request which is fettucinni with proscuitto, peas, parmesan, lemon and cream. (I used fat-free half and half and will thicken with flour next time.)

It tasted yummy and I love the brightness of the peas! 

Last night was all about me and I made meatloaf.  E and N gave me a hard time about how much they hate meatloaf and N went so far as to spend the night with a friend to avoid it!  E decided it wasn't so bad after all and went back for seconds!  Poor C was working late and missed out.  Of course, to me the best part is left over meatloaf sandwiches the next day!  It was delish!!

I went to a peach orchard yesterday and bought fresh peaches.  What better way to use them than in a fresh peach pie.  Please don't judge me by my crust!  I still have not mastered the art of beautiful scalloped edges.  I usually go for cobbler so it doesn't matter, but took a chance on pie today.  The edges may not be gorgeous, but the rest looks pretty darn good!

Now off to make dinner so we can have dessert.  Or maybe we'll have dessert first tonight!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Reading Harry Potter

Being an avid reader and a former teacher, I have always been a fan of the Harry Potter books (and movies)!  Just before each new book or movie has come out, I've gone back to read the entire series again.  Well, The Deathly Hallows, Part 2 comes out on July 15th, so of course I had to re-read the books again. So in the the last month I have read all 7 books. That was 4,100 pages in 4 weeks!  Or 1,025 pages per week!  I loved it!  Now I can't wait to go see the final movie.  (I don't think I will even try to watch all 7 movies before the 8th one!)
I hope you have a book or books that you are enjoying this summer.  Remember to have your kids read at least 2-3 times per week so they don't lose skills they gained this past school year!

Happy Reading!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Happy 4th and 5th!

We had a quiet 4th of July at our house! N and I were out of town over the weekend helping my aunt celebrate her 80th birthday.  C and E both worked on the 4th and were gone most of the day.  We had C's parents over for hamburgers and homemade chocolate ice cream.  Then we spent the rest of the evening participating in "America's pasttime" and watched baseball.  Go Rangers!! 

I started my 4th with a 4 mile run and thought about how lucky we are to live in a country where we can run without worrying about being shot at or bombed.  I also thought about how grateful I am to our troops who have chosen to protect our rights to freedom. 

Today I started my day with the what I call my circuit training.  I run 3 days a week and cross-train 2-3 other days.  Today's workout was the following:
10 pushups
20 minutes on the elliptical
10 tricep dips, 10 pushups
15 minutes on the bike
10 tricep dips, 10 pushups
10 minutes on the elliptical
10 tricep dips, 10 pushups
5 minutes on the bike
10 pushups

Of course, I was starving so I had this amazing salad for lunch!
Spinach, banana peppers, tomatoes, dried cranberries, almonds, sunflower seeds, a boiled egg, and fat-free thousand island dressing.  YUM!

Tonight's menu: grilled chicken, rice and roasted beets.  I've never roasted beets so I'll let you know the verdict tomorrow.

Happy 5th of July!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Friday Fun

My day started out with a 5 mile run!  It was a little hot, but bearable.  No picture due to dropping (and breaking) my camera yesterday.  I got a new one and started with pictures later in the day.  After a trip to the grocery store, I was greeted by baby birds on my front porch and in the yard.  It appears that the mommy and daddy were teaching the babies how to hunt for food.  The 4 babies would take off around the yard and the mommy would call them to her.  They were precious!  E, who hates birds, wants one now!

They "played" in our yard for several hours.  It was fun to watch them and to be reminded that no matter how small or seemingly insignificant, God has a plan.

I moved on to cookie baking.  If you take these things and put them together in the right ways
this is what you come up with!
9 dozen pieces of deliciousness!

N got a full set of braces on Monday and has had a difficult time eating anything that requires chewing.  He felt better today and requested chili covered cheese enchiladas.  What's a mom to do?  Honor that request, of course!  This is the result.

We are off to spend time with family over the 4th.  I hope and pray that everyone has a happy and safe holiday!