June 11, 2017 Time flies when you are having fun…..

When Sweet Husband told me he was setting up a site for me to blog, I shrugged and said okay.  How hard can it be?  I post on Facebook.  Pin on Pinterest.  What is one more social media outlet?  Apparently for me it is very hard, it has been 19 months since my last post. HA !

The last two years we have had a lot going on.  Built and moved into our home.  Husband switched jobs.  I started working part time as a substitute teacher.  Traveled for two months, six thousand miles, and homeschooled our kids while seeing amazing places and visiting with family and friends along the way.   Many more long weekend trips for family birthdays etc.  Basically flying by the seat of our pants.

I have come to a point that I need to have a plan.  A purpose.  A goal.

In other words…I need to get my shit together.

I will say I have a very high opinion of myself.  Very high confidence level.  It took me awhile to realize that during the last year I have let myself go.  The muscles that were tight on my back are now rolls.  I get winded on hikes.  I have gained twenty pounds.  I blamed mid 40s hormones. I blamed looking at too much food late at night on Pinterest and then snacking.  I blamed wearing leggings and yoga pants on a regular basis.  When I ATTEMPTED to “get dressed in real clothes”….to slip into my always loose skinny jeans the buttons laughed at me.  In the end I have to blame the face in the mirror.

I know what to do and I know how to do it.  I could teach a course in health, fitness, and exercise.  This is what brings me back to this blog.  I need to reverse the negative.  I know that food and exercise have a huge effect on me.  When my diet/exercise sucks.  I suck.  Plain and simple I SUCK.  I am grouchy, tired, lazy, I snap at my family, my mood swings are nice mommy to scary mommy.  I just do not care.  This is actually not true.  I do care.  After I go “a little” crazy…I go in our room and I cry.  Then I grab a bag of chips, lay in bed and read a crap novel.  Because it makes me feel better….for a few minutes.

So… (I use the word “so” a lot)  I have been doing a lot of soul searching lately.  What do I want?  Who do I want to be?  How do I get there?

I read a super cute happy cozy book.  The Little Book of Hygge – Danish Secrets to Happy Living This book was my lightbulb moment.  Small little changes that bring your joy.  REAL. QUALITY.JOY.  I went out and bought a bunch of candles.  I started using my essential oils again.  Talked to my bestie and set up our bi-weekly family dinners.  Took Facebook off my phone.  These little steps have put me on the path to renewal.

Last night I read another book.  Food Freedom Forever  We have been lovers of the Paleo/Primal lifestyle for YEARS.  Most of our main meals still follow this way of life.  It is just adding too many cocktails, chips and salsa, desserts, etc…to the main meals that has made us drop off the wagon.  I skimmed most of the book as I know the basics.  What I found to be very helpful was reconnecting with the WHY.  If you really want a cupcake.  Have a cupcake.  Before you eat it ask yourself.  WHY !??  If you cannot come up with a good reason or if you know the consequence of eating the cupcake outweighs the momentary bliss.  Say no.  Have it another day, when you can enjoy it.  Really want it.  After finishing this book.  I grabbed a trusty half used spiral notebook and started to make MY plan !  MINE MINE MINE.  Lick the pork chop mine.  Yes, our family will also join me in the journey, but for the now…this is for ME.  I made a schedule for my day to include:  sleep , morning routine (drink water before coffee, stretch, a back injury has limited my flexibility, I want it back), meal prep/planning, chores (use a timer to get ‘er done), ONLY CONTROL WHAT I CAN CONTROL (MY sleep, MY exercise, MY environment, MY relationships, MY mental state, MY stress – Eliminate, Reduce, Cope (find MY triggers).

Our family has made some HUGE decisions, which will bring HUGE changes to our little lives and to be successful I need to be at my best.  Let the journey begin.

Our changes…..

  1.  We are homeschooling our children next year.  We are all SO EXCITED for the challenge and adventures to come.
  2. Healthy lifestyle.  In our diet.  In our daily life.  In our vacations.  In everything we do.
  3. Projects.  I have many pinned.  Now to make a list and actually do them.  Make this house the Hygge home we want it to be.

I cannot wait to share our progress and I am sure our challenges in navigating our changes.

September 4, 2015

Having one of those days, a lazy day. The kids were too tired to go to the local amusement park (WHAT !) so we are all still in our lounge clothes vegging out. It is hotter than Hades outside. It is September I want a firepit, music and wine. Instead it is sweat dripping down your back and bugs.

The heat has halted our garden. I am craving okra, but nothing is happening. Usually we pick every 3 days…been a week ! Nada.

Yesterday was a sad afternoon, I had to home our two remaining chickens. Some predator decided our free range chickens were to easy to pass up. We lost three in a few weeks. Once our house is built and we can have coop with us we will re-evaluate the situation. For now they have a nice new home and I do not have to clean a chicken coop. I will miss the eggs ! Nothing like fresh eggs.


Our Whole 30 is going well, but we did alter it. We are allowing wine and olives with a vodka marinade (HA !). I am back to my comfort zone weight wise and clothes are loose. I could care less about the number it is all about the way my clothes fit.

I big news our house is underway !!! We have permits and septic and footers and a foundation ! So exciting to see the progress each day. I know it is many months away and my dream of being in by Christmas will not be….but we are on our way.



Everyone enjoy your weekend !

Ours will include college football, Whole 30 approved wings and treats, and relaxing !

August 20, 2015

I am the person pay blog sites LOVE…  I pay and I never blog.  I used to be that way with the gym too, but now I go a lot, so they are losing money on me there.   I guess it all balances.  Which is what I need to find.  Time for life and a little time to blog.  Balance.  I am a Libra after all.

Summer vacation has come and gone.  It was a wonderful summer.  Traveling, visiting friends and family, swimming, boating, camping, too many cocktails and snacks.  School is now back in session, time to get back in a routine.  I thrive on routine.  I can be flexible with a few days notice.

So what is shaking?

The garden is coming full circle.  We have harvested the tomatoes and did a lot of canning.  I made ten gallons of sauerkraut and my mouth waters just thinking about it.  Stepped off the ledge and used a pressure canner for the first time…beans.  No one died.  It was a good day.  Now I am onto okra.  did some pickling (tastes just like a dill pickle) and roasting today.DSC_0238

Our sweet babies are back to school.  I cannot believe we have a kid with double digits !!!  I miss them.  They are enjoying their first week back.  Lets hope and pray that it continues.

Since the kids are in school that means mama can go back to the gym.  Two months off.  BAD IDEA.  I am working through the soreness and have a love hate relationship with my foam roller.  I love to work out hard.  Pullups, burpees, sprints.  I will work back up to where I was and be able to walk up the stairs unassisted very soon.  Stay tuned !  If you want to follow along, here is the link to Men’s Journal – Best Shape of Your Life !  I do have to lower some of the weights, but the schedule is awesome.

On the diet front, Jay and I realized that we were back to eating lots and lots and lots of crap.  Cocktails on the porch each night and we are getting squishy.  It was time for another Whole 30.  Basic concept is all real foods and no dairy, sugars, grains, alcohol.  If you prepare for it it is easy.  I meal plan and prep things in advance so we always have something available.  I have also found if I do not buy it, I cannot eat it.  GENIUS !  So to add to the people I annoy on Facebook with my food pictures…I will also post them here !  For instance…here was my lunch.  Left over taco meat with homemade salsa and guacamole on lettuce wraps with a side of roasted okra.  Everything was prepped in advance, took a few minutes to toss together.  WINNER !  food


Next week our life will get even crazier !  We are building a house !  I am so excited.  We poured over thousands of house plans and ended up with one of the first we loved, go figure !  I am over the moon with my pantry and Jay cannot wait to wire it up !  The kids love that they each have their own room, they have been sharing for the last few years.  More on the house as progress is made !

Have a wonderful day.  Remember you can be happy anywhere doing anything.  It is a choice !


September 16, 2014

I am playing catch up on posting again.  My intention is to post entries in the evening, when things settle down, but they do not settle down do they?  Brushing teeth, reading stories, snuggling, putting kids to bed a second and third time….  By then I am ready to read a book or sleep.

We had quite a few events this last week !  Uncle Rs bday, unfortunate passing of a cow,  husband away on military drill, too much frozen pizza served, and cool weather is FINALLY coming !

Uncle R had a birthday !  We made him dinner and had a mini party !  Lasagna and cake.  The sauce for the lasagna was made with all veggies from his (our) garden.  I roasted yellow squash, zucchini, onions, garlic, and carrots.  Once done dumped them along with put up tomatoes and herbs into the Vitamix and presto blendo.  We have sauce !  SO GOOD.  I used ground bison for the meat and little cheese.  It was sooo good !


Prepping the sauce to blend. Double the garlic…that is my motto !


Sauce pre blend


Browned ground bison and sauce simmering


Finished product ! Yes those are noodles. Shhh do not tell. I toyed with making our Paleo Lasagna, but I was just too tired. Lazy girl gets the noodle and stomach bloat, it is what it is. (and it was goood)


Cake !

On Thursday our daughter notices a cow down in the field.  I thought a tree went down, apparently I need to wear my glasses more often.  The kids and I rode over and she was right.  A ten year old cow had passed away.  We have no idea why, but that was our first experience of the sad side of farm life.  We were not able to stay in the field long, a storm was coming.


We lost a cow, when I came to check on her all the other cows surrounded her. I was not able to get close.


It rained SO HARD !

We helped Charlie’s friend O celebrate his 7th Birthday at Wonderworks.  This was our first visit and we had a great time !  It was empty which allowed us to try out everything.  I am afraid of heights, lets put that out there.  I climbed to the top of the rock wall and rang the bell.  AWESOME.  When the kid working the exhibit said just hold the rope, lean back and let go I was like HECK NO !!!  So I also climbed DOWN the rock wall.  The other challenge was a four stories high rope maze.  They hook you in a harness to a line and then you walk across ropes and balance beams.  I did it because Charlie was inch to short to go on his own.  He was done after fifteen minutes.  I took him down, then a friend and I looked at each other and said LETS DO THIS !  So the two moms went and conquered this beast.  IT WAS SO MUCH FUN !!!

Here is the link to this madness.



Charlie getting his climb on. He made a quarter of the way up. He tried twice. So proud !


Evie Girl made it three quarters of the way up. She rocked it out !


I was totally freaked out having to use one of their helmets. So glad I tried !!! Even wearing FAB suede heeled boots !

Monday I decided to get my down home cook on !  Paleo Style of course…..Smothered cube steak with mushrooms and onions.  Served with mashed potatoes (that we grew) and steamed cauliflower and broccoli.  I could not stop eating it !!!!  SO easy to make too !  This was my first time cooking a meal in a cast iron skillet.  Yes they do make food taste better.  The bacon grease helped too !


First heat your oil/grease of choice. I used bacon grease but butter or EVOO would be fine too. NO FAKE STUFF. Take that canola oil and can it !


Salt and pepper your cube steak. I also tossed on some garlic powder.


Brown each side, this take about 2 minutes per side. Set aside in an oven ready pan.


Once the meat was done I sauteed mushrooms in the left over bacon grease, I did need to add more (used butter). Seasoned with salt, pepper and garlic powder. SO EASY !


Next up… saute the onions. Again. Butter, salt, pepper, garlic powder. I did these until nice and brown, yet firm.


Dish before baking. Preheat oven to 300 deg.


Broth I use for cooking…


Pour about a cup of broth into the pan and boil and scrap all the goodies off the bottom. Pour into baking pan. Add another cup of broth.

Put the finished product in the oven and cook for about an hour.  I went over the hour and the meat was falling apart !  I put a scoop of mashed potatoes in the center of the plate, topped with meat, mushrooms and onions.  Drizzled the broth/gravy over the top and dug in !

As usual I have no picture of the finished product and plate.  I like to eat too much, I had seconds !  The kids ate it too.  Evie did put hers in a flour tortilla (sigh) but she did eat it !


September 1, 2014

Labor Day Weekend was all about labor for us !

We have a very pretty white fence that surrounds the house.  There is an electric fence on the pasture side to keep the cows off of it.  White fences get dirty from lack of sun etc…  Once  year we clean them, think bucket of water with bleach solution and a brush.  Hose off and repeat.  I channeled my inner Tom Sawyer and volunteered for the task this year.  I really thought I would have it done before the kids started summer vacation.  Then a week turned into a month and another and now we are in September !  Completing that fence is at the top of my list for September, did I mention there are like 50 or 60 sections and we wash both sides !


Wax on Wax off. Scrubba Scrubba…..


Dirty fence


Clean fence


Bleach we mix with water to clean the fencing. First I hose down the section. Then dip the brush (same type with long handle you use to wash your car) into the water solution and coat the fence, then do each section. Hose off. Move on to next section.

Tennessee is VERY hot right now, 90s.  Killer.  Ready for fall.  To cool off I made the kids some fresh popsicles.  Lucky for mommy there was quite a bit of the mixture left over and it goes nicely over ice….. with vodka.  Just saying….


Ingredients ! Watermelon and Limeade.


Toss watermelon chunks and two cups of limeade into Vitamix and press go.


Fill super cute popsicle molds, freeze and enjoy !


Watermelon Limeade with Stoli Blueberry Vodka. Tastes like a watermelon Jolly Rancher !

Charlie got some power tool training today !  He became the “Drill Master” !  Umpa (aka grandpa) was replacing the framing around a water tank, the cows finally did it in.  Umpa rebuilt the frame and needed to install it.


Drill Master !!! (check out his cowboy boots ! Too cute.)

My plan for today was to NOT get dressed, I succeeded until 6pm tonight…when “the” phone call came.  Uncle Ronald called and said it was time to pick the potatoes !  All six of us piled in the cars and headed down the road for potato picking and family bonding time.


How you dress to pick potatoes when you are an international fashion star !


Uncle Ronald plowing through the potatos. You drive up each row with a plow thing on the back that goes in the ground it makes two new rows and out pop the potatoes, so cool !


Plowing the first row.


First pass with the tractor. POTATOES !!!!


After three passes per row we were done ! BUCKETS of potatoes. Fresh organic non GMO ! WOOT WOOT !


This soil is so rich it is like velvet !


Tater…. they call me tater salad. BAHAHAH ! Love Ron White !


Hard working boots.


Bald Sexy Husband.


Kids relaxing in the back of Umpa’s pick up.


Soon we will have more corn, second crop is coming due !


What I am MOST excited about… butternut squash. So many made it ! They will be ready the end of the month. This one is a foot long !

Kids have showered, now to put them to bed…school night !




August 24 – 28, 2014

COLD-A-PALOOZA hit our house and knocked us out !

How we faught our colds…the natural way of course

  • I made chicken soup.
  • We drank lots of water.
  • I plowed everyone full of zinc and daily vitamins. (adults 50mg & kids 20mg*)
  • Drank Traditional Medicinal teas (Throat Coat for Adults & Childrens Cold Care for Kids)
  • Lots of sleep.
  • a few doses of Tylenol to lower fevers

*normally the kids max at 10mg of zinc, but for a few days we upped it to kick this colds butt.

Everyone is mostly recovered, still some hacking and gross nose sniffling going on, but not too bad.


The vitamins we give our kids. We have tried many brands of daily vitamins and these got two thumbs up from both kids. The zinc is not for daily, we supplement their daily with one zinc if they are getting sick to hopefully ward off the illness.


My vitamins. I take 3 daily, 2 Vitamin D, and 2 Zinc. Apparently I have crazy low Vitamin D even eating lots of veggies.

August 23, 2014

Happy Saturday.

Last night Jay and I went on a date.  Had a great time.  We do not go out often and really enjoyed “just being”.  No agenda, schedule, or requirement.  Just eat, drink and be merry.


Look ! I do own a dress AND heels !!! (and no that is not a backdrop, that is the view !!!)


Me and Wendy.


My sweet husband !

Date Night – THE END.

On Saturdays I usually sleep until eight,  today for some reason the kids who hate waking up for school were up and wired at seven !  I laid in bed for a little and then the need for the bathroom and the smell of fresh coffee won.

We have wanted to check out the Gatlinburg Farmers Market all summer, Jay and I made a morning date of it, while kids hung back home with their grandparents.  It was a nice morning strolling through the booths and shops getting to know our local vendors.  We bought a jar of honey with a honeycomb, rosemary/peppermint soap bar, and breakfast.  We did not buy any vegetables as our garden is still producing more than we can handle, but everything looked beautiful.

photo 1

Lisa’s lovely vegetables ! We had a glass of her very refreshing natural raspberry lemonade. Perfect on a hot morning.

photo 2

The honey man had a recipe that we will try soon ! He said it tastes like apple cider !

August 22, 2014

Morning came fast.  545 am…alarms going off.  Snooze being hit.  Over and over.  Finally roll out of bed with no intention of working out, but I had to get dressed so I put on my workout clothes.  No excuses !

As I returned home from the gym I passed the septic truck, which means I missed out on all the fun !  Darn ! NOT….  we had both tanks pumped today.  I quickly found out I did not miss all the fun…we had to fill the holes back in with dirt and tamp them down (using a 20lb tamper) my shoulders are toast right now between tamping and pull up practice….


Father In Law tamping….


My turn ! Doing a little advertising for Sweet Husband with my cool new workout shirt !


Finished product. Now to split some of the plants and re-mulch.

Still have one more hole A LOT deeper to fill in the back of the house….

I am in need of a haircut.  I am a short hair girl.  I LOVE IT !  I had very long hair once upon a time, it spent all of its time damp and in a messy bun with countless lost pencils stuck in it.  The kids wanted to help me.  Grabbed my clippers, mirror, a chair and off to the porch we went.  Charlie had fun !  Buzz Buzz went my hair.  As usual I screwed up one area, who knew that the ear guards took it down to true buzz level..HA !  It will grow back.


Hair Salon de Back Porch


Charlie Scissorhands prepping for duty !


I got this !


You have a lot of hair. It is getting all over me.


Finished product, notice how I now look like Big Foot…arms, chest, and even my face all covered in hair !


My clippings. Crazy how much hair I have !

Date Night…. the children are hanging with their grandparents, will update tomorrow.


  • Warm up – ran .25 miles FAST
  • Strength – Squats 8 – 8 – 8 – 8 – 8 (before summer 95#, after lazy all summer 65# LAME !)
  • WOD – 10 jump squats, 10 back forth, 10 air squats, 10 lunges (10 min AMRAP) I was DYING !
  • Pull up practice with band….16 !!!  One day I will do a pull up !!!
  • Row 1600M and stretched

Food I am not sure how the day will shake out, we have a DATE !!!  I am so excited,  We do not go out very often.  Cannot wait !

  • B – 2 soft boiled eggs and 1 sausage
  • S – raspberries and a little chicken salad
  • L – 1/2 avocado, mangos, salad
  • D – date night….



August 21, 2014

Thursday all in all it was a very uneventful day.  I cleaned the house top to bottom for six hours.  Not just cleaning, but moving furniture cleaning.  Organizing the kids books by size cleaning (HOW HARD is it to keep them in size order…err.)

The kids had their first after school activity last night.  Charlie is taking piano.  Evie is taking voice.  They both rocked it.  If we are very lucky, eventually they will rock it to the big stage, their daddy can be their financial manager and me their ever supportive stage mom.  I will make a pledge here and now, we will not allow our children to turn into front page flops of disgrace !  I was exhausted, so sweet husband picked up some local BBQ for dinner.  Even used paper plates.  Lame and wasteful.  I know.  Did I mention I was tired !

Went to sleep early, and then a little after midnight Evie woke up coughing so hard and unable to breath (due to stuffed nose) that we spent thirty minutes in a steamed bathroom, doing it old school.  Not sure if a summer cold or allergies, whatever it is…it can leave NOW !  She is home today.  Still coughing and slurping her nose.  Uggg.  Poor girl, but that noise… (she will be so mad when she reads this).

August 20, 2014

Happy Wednesday !

I just checked my email and received a notice from the library that THREE of the books I have on hold are available.   WHY do all of my Ebooks that I reserve all come in on the same day !  Some I was the second person on hold, some the sixty fifth.  Yet, they all come in on the same day !  Crazy I tell you !  What I really hate is when I reserve a series and the later books come available before the next in the reading order.  I check daily hoping the next book comes before I loose the later.  That is one advantage to real books, I could just pay the late fee and hold the book.  In the Ebooks they go POOF !

Okay enough whining about books, after I dropped the kids at school, I hit the gym and I think I lost about a gallon of sweat !  I want to do a pull up.  I do not care if it is just one, I want to do one.  I am doing band assisted pull-ups as many as possible.  Once I am toast I am doing reverse resistance.  Talk about shaky arms !  But I will do a pullup !!!!!

  • Warm up – .25 mile jog, pull up practice
  • Strength – 10 Burpees 10 minutes EMOM (total of 100, it hurt, just saying)
  • WOD – 15 air squats, 10 push ups AMRAP in 10 minutes (I got 7 complete rounds)
  • Sprints – 30 second sprints on treadmill at 10 mph, I did 5.  I walk REALLY slow between sprints).
  • I seem to be closing my workouts with rowing 1600M and a complete stretching routine, I have a love hate relationship with foam roller.  It really does help, but OMG it hurts !

After the gym I came home to a quiet home and no chores that need attention today, so I finally downloaded ALMOST all of the songs our sweet girl has requested (she has birthday gift cards to spend on iTunes).  Yeah…I had to cross off the Talk Dirty to Me and Wiggle.  I LOVE THE SONGS, but being that mom, I did a lyric check.  Maybe in a few or 10 more years !

I guess I will shower, I could do a load of laundry….would make tomorrow easier.

Have a wonderful evening !