Showing posts from 2017

Some New Recipes!

I haven't been doing a great job listening to my body this last month and have consumed all too much sugar and fatty carbs, so I'm consciously making a few healthier options this week. Here are a few recipes I'm going to try!

Breakfast: Apple Cinnamon Baked Oatmeal Cups (I haven't tried them yet, but while they were baking Scott said twice, "That smells so good!". edited to add: no flavor. Even with so much cinnamon, they tasted like... nothing? It was weird.) & random smoothie concoctions (I always use greek yogurt, ice, milk/juice, a banana and whatever fruit I have -- sometimes I add peanut butter or chia seeds).

Lunch: leftovers or ham+cheese+lettuce wrap

Dinner: Hamburger Soup(edit: made for dinner--- delicious!), Buffalo Chicken Sweet Potatoes, Chicken Pesto Vegetables + Pasta, and these Mexican Quinoa Wraps

Any suggestions on other types of protein/meat? I pretty much alternate between chicken and hamburger... with shrimp once every two weeks or so…

Hopes for 2018

Do you make New Years Resolutions? I haven't made a real resolution in a few years... all that pressure, I always lose steam by about January 3rd. I do take time to reflect on the year and what went well and what could be better; then I try to create a few focus words or phrases to help usher in the new year. Of course, some years I've forgotten my words by February, but other times they've been a consistent reminder.

This year I used Canva to create an image with my phrases to use as my computer background for awhile or maybe my phone background later. It's a super easy program, so I may end up changing how it looks as the year goes on. We'll see.

Maybe my biggest accomplishment of 2017 is improving my relationship with my body. I feel more confident, less obsessed with the # on the scale, less obsessed with food in general. I am stronger. I am healthier. I am better at listening to my body. . . . but I am still horrible at drinking water. Like, I'm lucky if I…

What I Read in 2017

My Top 5: Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon Girls on the Edge by Leonard Sax Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson Salt to the Sea by Ruth Sepetys The Girl Before by JP Delaney
This list has a few more I forgot about!

2018 Reading List

I obviously love fiction, especially YA (so I can recommend current books to my students!), but I switch things up occasionally with non-fiction. I know I'll read at least 25 books, so this is my starting place! Any other recommendations?

Currently: Holiday Edition

Currently I'm...

eating: a few gummi worms from the 5 POUND bag my Secret Santa gifted to me this morning.

thinking: that I'm glad there are 12 days of Christmas because we haven't even watched a single Christmas movie yet! Still on our list: Frosty the Snowman (the original), the claymation Rudolph, the Mickey Christmas one on Netflix, Love Actually, Elf, and Home Alone! What are your Christmas favorites?

feeling: A bit overwhelmed with the speed of Advent and the fact I'm working through Friday afternoon. I have about 50 essays to grade by Thursday... and then 110 finals to grade by Friday... Plus some Christmas baking and a little bit of last minute wrapping to attempt #wishmeluck

drinking: a room temperature Diet Coke

planning: how to spend the $1,000 Scott won from a radio contest yesterday!! (And a PS4 + some CDs). I want to save it actually, but Scott wants to spend it. So maybe we'll compromise in the middle.

hoping: to make it to Jazzercise every day (except 2) …

7 QTs

ONE. I just finished Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon, and I loved it. As Google said, "Maddy is a smart, curious, and imaginative 18-year-old who is unable to leave the protection of the hermetically-sealed environment within her house because of an illness. Olly is the boy next door who won't lett hat stop them from being together. Gazing through the windows and talking only through texts and emails, Maddy and Olly form a deep bond that leads them to risk everything to be together, even if it means losing everything." Maddy is so well-developed as she expresses her feelings as she falls in love for the first time.... but be ready for a shocker at the end.

TWO. When spaghetti squash and zoodles because all the rage, I stupidly tried them as an actual noodle substitute, like with pasta sauce. Both grossed me out, so I though I disliked it. A few months ago I decided to try again, and I found some great recipe go-tos! Like Mexican Spaghetti Squash. It's super ver…

Christmas Gift Finds

I have found some awesome Christmas presents the last few weeks and wanted to share them in case you need ideas!

1. Pink Salt Riot (thanks to Rosie's Catholic Artisan Gift Guide) has some beautiful (and reasonably priced) jewelry. I bought this necklace for a friend, one for me, and the divine mercy chaplet bracelet for my MIL.

2. Can You Find Saints? book from Amazon for my godson (who's in Kindergarten). And this one for Luke. 

3. These bath bombs that come with a hidden toy inside for Luke. 

4. Kendra's (Catholic All Year) Liturgical Living Calendar for my sister.

5. This 30 day devotional (with coloring pages inside!) for my SIL

6. These calligraphy pens + learning book (for me!)

7. This workout tank for my friend!

Just some thoughts 7QTs

(One) After taking a career interest survey in my class, a 9th grade girl saw the result: "Homemaker." She remarked, "Oh wow. That means I have no skills," and laughed.

I may have had a similar response at age 14, but nevertheless, this made me really sad. For many reasons, staying at home during the summer is much harder for me than actually teaching. Being a "homemaker" requires an abundance of skills that unfortunately, few recognize. I'm not sure what all my thoughts are about this, it just stood out to me I guess.

(Two) Stranger Things moves soooo slowly. First season was okay. Now on Season 2, episode 4, it's finally getting interesting.

(Three) I am totally jumping onto the Christmas train .... really early. Sorry, not sorry. I put all of my Halloween decor away (a whole tote, ha) in hopes of Christmas decorating this weekend! Well, everything except the tree, which will maybe wait two weeks for.

(Four) Also, thanks to Rosie's Catholic …

Well Hi There. This is Me, Procrastinating.

1. All of my UNO grad classes have been easy-- annoyingly so. They had me complaining about how much money I was wasting to learn nothing! So, when I had to take two classes this semester (when I had previously only taken one at a time), I thought it'd be a breeze. FREAKING WRONG. I'm dying over here as I sit at Scooter's gulping down my large black coffee hunkered down because it's open the latest (10pm!). I even made specific, achievable goals for every day of the week: 1.5 hours on most days, and a 3 hour chunk of work time 2 days a week. I'm still falling behind. Prayers for my sanity....

2. Scott has been great though! I've still been Jazzercising about 4x a week because I feel so much better mentally (and physically too, but surprisingly I've noticed so many mental benefits to this new consistent exercise routine)! He's been so accommodating and letting me sneak away for an hour a day + doing bedtime so I can start on homework before 9pm.

3. Luke …

Oh hey!

1. More flavorful than LaCroix in my opinion and a little bit cheaper.

2. Loved this book! I felt it accurately portrayed many parts of my own high school experience-- or at least the quest for identity, individuality, dealing with other people's expectations, etc. In the last few weeks I've also read:  Far Far Away by Tom McNeal (ehhhhhh), Into the Water by Paula Hawkins (same author that wrote Girl on the Train. I really liked this one too!), Variant by Robison Wells (good YA sci-fi/mystery).

3. I am almost finished with Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson. It is equal parts shocking, fascinating, horrifying and heart-breaking. Seriously, go read it now!! Stevenson is a defense lawyer who helped death row inmates starting in the early 80s in the South. The book is half memoir as he retells some of the prominent cases he worked, and half his take on the judicial system, poverty, and race in the South. I am learning so much I wasn't aware of; I am continuously amazed at how rac…

Stopping By with Random Happenings

A non-insured driver rear-ended me the first week of August and totaled out my Civic. Thankfully I had insurance (even though now my rates will go up, we had to pay our $500 deductible, it was a freakin hassle to get a new car RIGHT as I was starting school, and we now have an additional car payment...). But we're all safe. We upgraded to a 2012 Nissan Rogue which actually has room for our double stroller or other larger objects, so it's all good. (We had a fantastic experience at CarMax, btw.)

I'm listening to Home Front by Kristin Hannah and I hate it, but I don't have another audio book at the moment so I'm sludging through it. The Girl Before, however, was good! I'd recommend that one.

Over the summer I developed a really bad habit of buying some unnecessary treat every day (fountain pops, iced coffee, an ice cream cone, etc.) and now every day when I leave school I want to get something... but our budget really can't afford that right now with the addi…

Body Image

I lead a REbeL chapter at my school, which is a club that helps high schoolers "change society's definition of beauty" because "every body is beautiful." At our weekly meetings we discuss the way media thinks we should look, societal trends, eating disorders, mindful eating, healthy exercise, self-esteem, etc. And even though I'm hopefully helping students become more accepting of their bodies, I quickly realized I was in a weird relationship with my own.

So, this past year I've been reflecting on how I approach eating, working out, body image, self-esteem, etc. with more mindfulness than before in hopes of figuring out just what does and doesn't work for me.

and what have I learned?

I need only to listen to my own body. 

I will gobble up desserts all day long (cookies, brownies, ice cream, yum!), but otherwise I eat a balanced variety of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. Instead of eating based on outside cues (time of day, seeing a delicious f…


Our home was in need of a major face lift this summer! We were so thankful to find a teacher at our church who does handy man stuff in the summer because he was AWESOME and affordable and truly such a blessing.

He (and some high school boys!) replaced a bunch of rotten siding, added trim boards, brick molding on every window, painted the whole house, and did a bunch of little things for us like fixing some stuff around the fire place vent and filling cracks in the patio cement. It took him over 2 weeks!

We also had 2 windows installed through Lowe's. (Not a great experience...)

We LOVE what our home looks like now though. It feels so great to be DONE.