Sunday, October 13, 2013

Sunday Night Chit Chat: Turkey Day!

Howdy Humble Readers...

Here, north of the 49th parallel, it's Thanksgiving weekend.  While technically, Thanksgiving is tomorrow, most people I know celebrated today with their turkey and all the trimmings.  We are doing ours tomorrow, and I'm feeling pretty well prepared. 

Herbert the turkey is thawing in the fridge, the sweet potatoes (aka Sandy's Yams) have been prepared.  The cornbread for my stuffing is made and 'drying out', the veggies and sausage for the stuffing have been sautéed and ready for assembly tomorrow.  My maple pumpkin cheese cake is cooling (sadly, it cracked  pretty seriously, but there will be a pecan maple cream sauce to cover the boo-boos).  The breakfast casserole for brunch tomorrow is prepped and ready to go.  All I have to do tomorrow is the mashed potatoes, vegetables (roasted brussel sprouts and carrots), gravy, and of course cook Herbert.  The other things will reheat in the oven while the turkey is resting.  Yay!

In other news, you know how I've been stressed out about Pip's lack of talking?  Well, yeah, I still am, but man oh man, Ginny is sure making up for his silence.  My wee sweet girl WILL. NOT. STOP. TALKING.  She sings to her food, she talks to her shadow-girl, and holds conversations with all of her toys.  And when she's not doing any of those things, she's talking to me.  She gives me a running commentary on the leaves falling outside and all of Pip's movements.  More than once I've heard some of my words coming out of her mouth, and I cringe.  I swear she's going to be a lawyer or a politician when she grows up. 

On to this week's chit chat.  Here's what I'm...

Reading - "The Painted Girls" by Cathie Marie Buchanan.  I am ADORING this book!  My SIL recommended it to me, and it is so good.  It's set in late 19th century Paris.  The main characters are two sisters, one of whom was the model for Edgar Degas' statue "Little Dancer".  It's an interesting look at the culture of the lower classes in Paris (particularly those associated with the Opera), and how they got by day to day.  I'm loving it. 

Watching - Last week's episode of Scandal.  Later I'll watch Once Upon A Time. 

Listening To - My Beloved muttering to himself as he works on his next assignment for his course.

Cooking/Baking - Other than all my efforts for Thanksgiving, it's going to be a pretty tame week cooking-wise.  Nothing new or spectacular.  Hot turkey sandwiches, pork chops, and chili.  Oh, I did learn something cooking related this weekend... and I learned it the hard way.  Butternut squash can do a serious number on your skin.  It's never happened to me before, but after some research I found out that if a squash is picked before it's fully ripe (impossible to know of course, when you buy the squash at the grocery store) the sap/juices act as a defence mechanism for the fruit and it acts like a chemical peel.  My hands looked like I had contracted leprosy for several hours yesterday. 

Happy I Accomplished This Week - Managing to keep the wee-lings fed, clothed, while feeling like I'm getting kicked in the back repeatedly.  I've also managed to get within spitting distance of being 75lb down.  Only a month after my original target. 

Looking Forward To Next Week - Pulling out the Halloween decorations.  Finalizing the wee-lings' costumes. 

Thankful For - Antibiotics the size of horse tranquilizers, that Ginny made it through church this morning (even though Pip didn't), and that we are blessed enough to be able to give to the foodbank rather than need their services. 

***Bonus Question*** What is your favourite part of Thanksgiving food-wise?  Leftovers.  I could eat cold turkey sandwiches (with mayo, salt, and pepper, on those squishy little dinner rolls) every day for a month and not be sick of them.  I also really like my sweet potato recipe... it's got booze in it.  :) 

This was posted as a part of Carla's Sunday Night Chit Chat.  Pop on over and check out what others are chatting about tonight. 

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Murphy's Law As Applied To Exercise

Hey Humble Readers...

I was so proud of myself. 

Two great days at the gym.  6.5km on the stationary bike, 3km on the treadmill, and the weight circuit. 

I was aching in places I haven't ached for several weeks , but it was a good kind of ache.  I was feeling good and thinking I might be on track to a new routine.  I even lost a pound since last Friday. 

Then I got a fever.  Then I got that tell tale back ache.  No gym yesterday or today.  I was able to get in to see Dr. B today, and low and behold I have a kidney infection.  I am not to do any real serious exercise for another three or four days.  Grrrr...

The kicker... the infection is most likely due to my time on the stationary bike. 


Sunday, October 6, 2013

Sunday Night Chit Chat: The Great Punkin Hunt

Hey Humble Reader...

Before I forget again, I need to tell you who won the giveaway for JR Vikse's new book, The Keeper Chronicles: Playing With Fire.  I meant to announce it at the end of September, and then my swiss cheese memory took over.  So, without further ado, the winner is... Elana!  I will be in touch to arrange for delivery of your book. 

Our weekend was great.  Grocery shopping, running some errands (the wee-lings both needed a few things from the kids consignment store, I needed a few things from the craft store), and the Fall Festival at the Jungle Farm.  The wee-lings had such a great time playing in the straw, and running around the mazes.  It started out a bit chilly, but it cleared up and finished up being a beautiful day. 

We picked out our pumpkins (Ginny was very, VERY excited about all the 'punkins'), and I think I got some pretty good autumn pictures of Ginny & Pippin.  We had some difficulty making our final decisions, and getting the wee-lings to each settle on one pumpkin.  All together we came home with six... three for carving (one big, and two little) and three mini pumpkins for decoration.  Ginny has taken to pointing out her punkin every time she comes into the dining room, and she is looking forward to carving them.  I'm not sure that she really remembers what Halloween is all about, but she'll catch on. 

In other news, I'm going to be getting really strict with myself again on my carb counts. With the cooler weather has come a return to comfort foods, many of which are hard on my blood sugars.  I need to have a period of resetting my taste buds again.  With our vacation, and my birthday, and everything, I've let a few too many things creep back in.  I'm cutting out my no-sugar added ice cream, and other low carb sweets for a while too.  Just to break myself of that habit.  Our Thanksgiving is next weekend, and I'm going to allow myself a bit of a break that day (although I am planning on not having too many temptations around), but I still need to get back on track. 

On to this week's chit chat.  Here's what I'm...

Reading... Gah.  I haven't read much at all this week.  Still re-reading HP & the Deathly Hallows.  It's actually been kind of nice reading it slow.  Every time I've read it before, I've been in a rush... right after the release, before the movies, etc. 

Watching... I'm behind on my series watching too (what in the world did I do all week?).  I've an obscene number of episodes of Doctor Who on the dvr, and I have two series from the library (Sherlock season 1, and Game of Thrones season 2).  

Listening To... My Beloved is watching a rerun of Criminal Minds, so I've got that in the background. 

Cooking/Baking...  Tonight was a great dinner.  Italian braised roast beef (lots of onion, garlic and tomatoes), mashed potatoes, roasted acorn squash, and green beans.  I'm making a big pot of beef barley soup for my lunches throughout the week tomorrow with the leftovers, and I've got some baking coming up for an event at church.  I think I'm going to make some smores bars and some pumpkin muffins. 

Happy I Accomplished This Week... Restocked the wee-lings' winter clothes.  Got them each a couple of pairs of pants, and Ginny needed some long sleeved shirts/sweaters and a fall jacket.  Bought the supplies I need for a couple of Christmas projects. 

Looking Forward To Next Week...  Doing five days at the gym.  Making lasagna later in the week.  Thanksgiving!

Thankful For...  that the majority of the laundry was done yesterday and that the hang to dry stuff is almost dry.  I hate having clothes hanging in the bathroom all week, and I think I'll be able to put it all away tomorrow.  Yay! 

***Bonus Question*** What are you doing tonight?  Not much.  I want to do some reading.  And I'll probably surf pinterest for a bit.  I'm stuck for an idea for a Christmas gift for my sister and her husband.  If I am going to make them something I need to get a start on it soon. 

This was posted as a part of Carla's Sunday Night Chit Chat.  Please click over and check out what the others are chatting about tonight. 

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Hobbit-ish Potpurri: Bits And Bobs

Hey Humble Readers...

Autumn has well and truly fallen on the Shire.  The trees are golden, and the leaves are crunching underfoot.  When they're not too soggy to crunch that is.  It's been raining a lot over the last few days, and with the rain has come some crazy cold weather.  Normally this time of year our daytime high is 16C... nice crisp fall weather.  Today's high is 5C (and it currently feels like it's 1C).  I am so close to turning on the furnace it isn't funny, but I'm trying to hold off for as long as I can. 

Oh, and we woke up to a skiff of that white poop on the ground this morning.  Yuck!

One weather related complication that is rather unique to Canada is planning for Halloween.  I'm wracking my brain trying to come up with some cute costumes for the wee-lings, that are both weather and stroller friendly (for Pip at least).  I have an idea that would be super cute for Pippin, and would work over a winter coat, but it doesn't jive with him being in the stroller.  Maybe I'll hold it off for next year.  Ginny is another story entirely.  I have a good idea if the weather is warm-ish (above freezing), but if it's chilly (read: arctic) then I don't know what we'll do.  If it's super cold, then we'll probably just trick or treat around the mall (they give out candy at each store) rather than doing the neighbourhood. 

I've been to the gym once so far.  I fully intended to go this morning, but Pip woke up screaming just as I was getting ready to go.  The other night I did 8km on the stationary bike, 3km on the treadmill, and the weight circuit.  It felt good, until the next morning.  LOL  It will be difficult to get back on the bike tomorrow morning (and yes, I WILL go). 

We are planning to go to a Fall Festival at a local farm on Saturday.  I'm looking forward to it, just as a nice outing for all of us.  The weather is supposed to be nice, and I'm hoping to get some fun pictures of the wee-lings.  We are also going to be picking out our pumpkins, and maybe the last of the fresh local produce for the year. 

I've been doing a lot more laundry the last few days... we have been having diaper leak after diaper leak.  With both wee-lings.  We haven't had a dry morning in days.  I'm not sure what's changed.  Maybe it's time to consider moving them up into the next size. 

Pippin has become obsessed with the dishwasher.  He pushes buttons, turns the dial to start it, and takes dirty dishes out.  Silly boy.  We also may have gotten a word out of our not-so-talkative little boy.  I was waving at him the other day, saying bye-bye, and he looked at me, waved, and said buh-buh.  Haven't been able to get him to repeat it, but it was the first actual word we've had from him. 

Ginny loves having "jobs to do".  She helps load the washer and dryer.  She sets the table (cutlery, salt and pepper, condiments), sweeps the floor under the table after lunch, sorts and folds laundry (granted it isn't neat), and helps take out the garbage. 

But most of all, she loves to help make dinner.  She does simple things, like transfer the diced potatoes to the pot or spread the broccoli out on the baking tray.  Last night she spread mustard on the roast with a little help.  The night before, she helped combine all the veggies for the casserole.  Tonight she'll be helping to make the buns to go along with the chili we're having.  It's fun having her help, and we get to talk about the colours of the food, about numbers (how many potatoes is Mummy peeling?), and about food groups.  I've noticed an increase in her willingness to eat more vegetables (yucky hasn't been in her vocabulary in quite a while).  And she's so proud when Daddy thanks her for helping.