About Me

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I'm a bit silly & I like to make people laugh. People tell me I'm rather loud but I am usually quiet until I get to know you. I love life, I live life to the fullest & treat others as I would like to be treated.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

The day the peas went ting ting

After I moved out I went to live with two of my older brothers and older sister. We had specific nights that it was our turn to cook. I was 18 at the time and was just really beginning to experiment with cooking creations. Even at that age I suppose I was frugal. I knew I somewhat enjoyed the canned stew bought at the grocers. I know right? GAG! I wouldn't touch that junk with a 20ft pole these days!!

So, it was my night to cook. I decided I would make the most delectable stew that ever hit my family's taste buds. My nephew Dave was over too and that boy is a big eater. I'd have to dig out the biggest pot available. I bought a large piece of steak and even cut it into chucks myself. There was no buying already cut up stew meat. I was making a homemade dinner...and it was going to be fabulous.

I pan fried the steak chunks and seasoned them well, made a gravy with the drippings, sliced up potatoes and boiled them. Once that was all done I added everything to the big honkan kettle and dumped in a bag of split peas.

Ok, now you're wondering why in the world I would dump in a bag of peas. Well, I needed the green for color of course and I added carrots too. Remember, I was in the works of making the best stew. Ever.

I seasoned the pot of stew up with assorted spices, stirred it lovingly and let it simmer for a few hours.

Dinner time rolled around and I set the table and I may have even made rolls or some sort of bread. Mike, Laurie, Kelly and Dave were called to the table, we dished up our food into the big honkan soup bowls. I know I was ecstatic just thinking I was serving them the greatest stew ever. There would be no more canned filth. Well......the meat was too tough and too salty but the gravy had a nice consistency. The color mixture was great though. But, the peas were still hard little pebbles. At first everybody ate their most delicious stew in silence. I do think they were trying to be nice. I finally spit my peas out and everybody else followed. They made a ting ting sound as we plunked them on our dishes. I'm so lucky nobody broke their teeth that night and thank goodness Ken wasn't over for dinner that night!! I'm pretty sure he would have run far far away and I'd be an old maid with 158 cats.

I now know that peas and beans need to be soaked overnight. I guess I thought they were dehydrated and would zap back to life when I dumped them in. I do make stew now and it is pretty delish. Ken despises peas so I really don't have to worry about ever making that mistake again.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Finding peace in the simple things

Today was a blissfully good day. One that was full of house cleaning, getting my fingers immersed in some soil, sitting in the screen porch watching the birds nibble away at the feeders. I began reading the first book of the Anne Of Green Gables series and came back in the house as the sun was setting. I hung blankets on the line, watered my veggie garden and took pictures of my gardens. I enjoyed every minute of cleaning my house. Some may call that borderline nuts but really, I do like cleaning my house most of the time. Tomorrow I will organize my kitchen cabinets. I am slowly but surely letting go of the nonsense. I know for my own happiness I have to omit the nonsense in my life. Even if it means bidding adieu to some people. I recently came upon a quote. Yes, I am a quote geek.

"Enjoy life, how it is, and as it comes.There are always those who are worse off than we are. There are many things in your life that will catch your eye, But only a few will catch your heart... pursue those..."

I am going to be implementing this on a daily basis.

Monday, April 26, 2010


Where have I been and why haven't I been blogging is what I have been being asked. Well, a lot has been going on that has had me pretty much on an emotional roller coaster. I do not like to post negative filth on here.

At the same time, this is my blog, my place and I can be me on this. Some days I wanted to scream and some days I wanted to cry, and often times did. Some days I just wanted to crawl in a cave and hibernate until all the nonsense stopped. Some days I wanted to punch something and be left alone. I can't handle ignoarance from and toward other people.

The Wednesday after Easter I came down with the flu, spent a couple days laying on the couch, napping and I got to know my bathroom on a much to personal level. Once that cleared up I got a nasty head cold which turned into a double ear infection, sinus infection & chest crud. Fevers ran rampant, I visited the doctors twice, many tears were shed.

On top of feeling like crud my little brother got married. We weren't going to go because I was not well but hey, it was Joshy's wedding & I needed to be there. That same day I found out on my brother in laws facebook that my sister (who does not speak to us) had a baby. I had just found out three weeks prior that she was even expecting. This is the same sister with whom I am, I mean, was very close with. So yeah, it sucks knowing I have a new niece that I will most likely never see and I lost one of my very dear friends being my little sister. I will continue to pretend none of this bugs me. I tend to do the "everything is fine" type thing until I actually believe it. Hopefully I start believing it pretty darn soon cuz this just sucks. Maybe Yoga would help calm the hurt in my heart.

One of my very dear life long friends called me right before Easter telling me that he and his fiance had their baby but he was unaware if the baby or even Mommy would make it. Lauren is my brother from another mother. No, not really. But he might as well be. He's one of my oldest friendships. I am happy to report both baby Avana and Mommy Heidi are doing great and Miss Kathy got to hold lil Ava this past Saturday. I haven't held a little 6lb baby in quite some time. She is beyond precious and made many of the nonsensical stuff that has been going on just vanish.

On top of all that my little brother who is serving in Iraq had an outburst on my facebook page that I am embarrassed ever happened. I feel I need to apologize for the ignorance he posted. He got married this past December and nobody knew until two days later. Anyways, he got very upset because we didn't go to his wedding, didn't take pictures of them, I didn't plant flowers for his wife...keep in mind, nobody knew he even got married and we live in upper MI...we can't plant flowers yet. I would have been there had we known. What's up with all this nonsense? I've had it up to my eyeballs in the filth. Jealousy and lies are ridiculous! Maybe I need a punching bag to let some stress out on?

We got word not too long after that that my nephew was involved in an ATV accident. The four wheeler tipped over on him, crushing him and knocking him out. I didn't sleep for three days worrying about him. Dave & I are the same age and we've always been real close. Dave has compression fractures on his spine and one heckuva concussion. He has to see a brain specialist tomorrow. People, always wear a helmet! Through this whole time I went to the doctors twice, got numerous prescriptions and finally one that they said will knock the infection out of me. wooohooo!! Come to find out, it's otoxic! Nice.

I am finished with the antibiotics and am just waiting as patiently as I can for my hearing to go back to it's normal. I guess it gets messed up after someone has an ear infection. I've only had one in my whole life so this is new to me. Ken said if it doesn't return this week to call my otolaryngologist. It's kinda freaking me out to be honest. These past three days have been the most humanoid I have felt in 3 weeks. I am hoping that all of the other nonsense irons itself out soon. Life is far too short.

Ok, now that I got that out of my system I am beyond ready to share some new recipes I have tried, tell you all about the garden I planted, the daily musings of my fab five, otherwise known as our dogs, the upcoming camping season and get back on my peddle bike. I am down 8lbs so far and one pant size on my quest to lose 50lbs. I've got a long ways to go. But I will get there!! I know I have a fair share of nonsensical junk to motivate me =)

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Joshy and Charissa's wedding

My lil brother Joshy got married this past weekend. We inherited a fab new sis in law, Charissa and a four legged furry nephew, Dominic. Dominic was the ring bearer and Charissa's aunts girl pup was the flower girl...or umm pup =) It was the cutest thing EVER.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

This girls loves her dirt

Holy skittles!! It's been one heckuva month so far. Hopefully after two doctors visits, numerous nights of crying myself to sleep in pain is coming to an end. I never get sick like this. Never. It started with the flu right after Easter, turned into a cold, a sinus infection, a double ear infection and chest congestion. Talk about nonsense going through my body. I am hoping the new meds the doc put me on yesterday wipe this crud right out of my body. I am sooo beyond ready to get back to my goofified busy self!!

With all this going on we have still been able to accomplish a few things. We bought this "tater tower" from Lakestates Industries. I know, I could have made one myself but the funds for buying this goes to help our local special needs individuals. Lakestates is a business that teaches individuals with disabilities that they have abilities and can be of service to our community. It's really a fab thing all around. So, here's our tater tower. It's supposed to grow up to 100 lbs of taters. Now, some of you know that Ken's uncle owns a honkan huge potato farm and acquiring fresh, non chemicalized potatoes is not a problem at all. So, why grow them myself? Well, because I have never seen how a potato grows and I want that excitement. I'll keep you posted on my potato growing shenanigans. =)

Lookie here!! We took this rhubarb plant back with us from Massachusetts last summer from Nana's yard. She had oodles upon oodles of the red variety. (We have the green variety) We knew that after she passed that the family was going to be selling her house so we took "slips" and cuttings of all sorts of plants she had in her yard. I was beyond ecstatic when I saw this!! Bozinga!
We built another raised garden bed too. I know it's nothing fancy but imagine if you will, all of the delish veggies and fruits we will harvest! Shazam! Again, I'm super stoked!

I planted 20 strawberry plants and 8 asparagus and 64 onion sets so far in this bed. yeah, we like onions. Up until last year I though they were the most disgusting thing ever. Now, most dishes made in this household must always have onions, and garlic. I sometimes wonder if we smell like onions and garlic. LOL As you can see, I am implementing the square foot gardening in my raised beds. I will have 4 cubes of strawberries and two of asparagus. The bummer of these two plantings is that the asparagus is a two year variety. meaning I won't have a crop this year. Also it will be a year before I get a strawberry crop. But once they are established...we'll be in business!! I planted two blueberry plants in the front side garden too and a window box of spinach. It's still a bit early for everything else but very soon the carrots, broccoli, radishes, lettuce varieties, green peppers, jalapeno peppers, squashes, tomatoes and all the other fruits and veggies we have planned will go in. There will be several container gardens as well this year. Miss Kathy is gong to grow baby watermelons in a big honkan container!! Gosh, I love playing in the dirt!! Don't you?

Sunday, April 11, 2010

A week whooshed by in a blink of an eye

Wow! I totally didn't mean for a week to go by without posting. We had a fantastic Easter lunch at Ken's grandparents house and then we went to my sister's to visit afterwards. There were two awesome things that stick out about that day. We had a pie eating contest. Yup, you read that correct. We put our hands behind our backs & acted like pigs! It was hilarious. The most precious thing was hearing my nieces say "this was the best Easter ever!!" I asked them why they think that. My oldest niece, Kayla said "because everybody that I love is here" Jordyn said "yup, me too" and planted some hugs on her auntie that has a heart made of mush. My nephew wanted rides in our pickup truck so his Uncle Kenny hooked him up with that.

This week we also bough this desk. Ken had seen it on clearance for $50. It was regularly $200!! Cha Ching!! So, Miss Kathy gathered some screwdrivers and went to work after Ken went on the road.

I just LOVE it!! I wasn't fond of the drawers and there are other things I could use openings for. Almost all of our old and new cookbooks are on the top, the recipe boxes are on the right hand side where one of the drawers would have been. They no longer take up my limited counter space in my small kitchen. It's super convenient to sit at the desk and page through the books, jot notes, etc. We purchased the cardinal ceramic a short time after Ken's Nana passed away. It was one of her favorite birds. The candle holder in the middle used to be his Nana's. I have since put Nana's fish bowl there. I might get a betta fish for the lil tank. We'll see. Ken now has a place to put his settlements from work on the left hand side. Usually they go in the file cabinet in their envelopes which is total chaos. They are right there so I can do my totals on a monthly basis. I am certain this desk will help us run our business more efficiently. The calculator has a place, as do the envelopes. Yesterday I spent a good 7 hours doing paperwork at it. Uncle Sam will be happy. I don't know if you noticed or not, but I have a big thing for notebooks. There's one for our budget, meal ideas & recipes, gardening, blog and other writing topics, ideas and quotes. You name it, I've got a notebook for it. It's not uncommon for me to have 5 notebooks in each room and a stack of empty ones. I do have to admit, my notebook obsession sometimes drives Ken batty.

When I work in the den 9 times out of 10 at least one of the dogs is sprawled out on the couch in front of the patio doors. This is our Allison Jeanne taking an afternoon siesta in the sunshine.

The day after I put the desk together I came down with the flu, spent two days pretty much sleeping and drinking oodles of water and resting some more. Hence the whole no blog posts. I have several ideas rolling around for future posts. I'm almost back to my normal happy go lucky, energetic self and will be back to normal posting soon. Hope you are having the greatest weekend.


Saturday, April 3, 2010

Lunch with the ladies

Ya know, I have some really awesome friends!! This past week a group of us ladies went to lunch at the deli.

I met my girlfriend Shelli from my fab friend, Gwen about 14yrs ago. I can't even begin to tell you what a blessing Shelli has been. Shelli has been asking me to join the ladies for some time now. She knows about my Meniere's Disease crappolla & knew how horrified I was about the possibility of losing all of my hearing. She introduced me to these fabulous ladies & it's been great!! Btw, these fabulous gals just happen to be hoh themselves. I've known Patty (the woman next to me) for most of my life and Kathy (the one in purple) is Ken's aunt's aunt. Glenda (the one in lime) goes to my Church and grew up in north town too. Small world right?

Shelli, Glenda, myself & Kathy

Nothing beats great friends, great food, great conversation all topped off with oodles of laughs!!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Hero Hank

I'm going to warn you right now, this is going to be a long post and one that has raw emotions. I'm not going to sugar coat anything. I am going to tell you my life story & my journey to meet my hero. His name is Hank.

I was born on August 25th to Jim & Karen. Five days later Jim, Karen, myself, and their good friend Joe were going on a roadtrip downstate to visit Karen's Mom, Joyce and show her their new baby...aka me. =)

Their trip only took them as far as Epoufette, MI though. A pickup truck crossed the center line, crashing into our car head on. The driver of our car was killed instantly by the steering wheel decapitating him. Jim was ejected from the car & thrown into the ditch. Karen was laying on the back seat sleeping & I was sitting on the floor behind the passenger seat. The driver of the pickup was drunk...have I mentioned lately how STUPID drunk driving is?

I have always known about this accident & I was told that a police officer gave me CPR and brought me back. For my whole life I have always wanted to meet the man who gave me a second chance at life. I have searched and searched. Lost hours upon hours of sleep scouring, digging up any information I could possibly get my hands onto in search for this man. I don't think most people, other than my husband know just how much time I have given to this search and just how much I wanted this. It's been my dream. My. Whole. Life. I have heard stories about the accident, my injuries, Karen's injuries, Jim's injuries and Joe's death my whole life. I have heard the story about when my family went downstate to sign papers so the officer could be given a medal for saving my life. The day that we went downstate I was in the car with my Mom (I was adopted by my grandparents when I was a baby) Karen & Jim (my biologicals) went in to sign some papers, a cop came to the car that my Mom & I were in, asked if we needed anything. My Mom stated why they were there, the cop said, "that was me". Apparently I was sound asleep but when he said that I woke up and smiled at him. Keep in mind, I have heard these stories my whole life. I needed to thank the man, somehow, someway.

Now, just two weeks ago I got a call from Jim's wife telling me that the man who saved my life was up at my camp!! Jim was up at camp with my brother Bruce & Bruce's friend Hank. They were tapping maple trees. Anyways, Bruce jabbed his eye with a twig. He was fine but that whole incident got the guys talking about accidents. This Hank fella went on about this gruesome accident he came upon about 34yrs ago, the woman screaming in the car, pointing to her pink bracelet on her arm, the driver being decapitated, the baby in the backseat, the man walking from the ditch, being in Epoufette, Labor Day weekend, the baby's head being smushed like a pancake...it dawned on Jim that Hank was talking about the accident he was in!!

Ok, I go my whole life looking for this man. The man who hit us was a previous Mayor & everything was covered up. There is no record on file of our accident. Not even in Lansing!! I spent days, months and most of my life scouring anything I can get my hands onto to find this man and he lives a half a mile from my brother Bruce!! No kidding right?

Well, tonight I met Hank and his wife, Sue. I am still in awe, complete disbelief that this lifetime dream has come true. My brother Bruce went with us to Hanks house. Several years ago Bruce was in a bad motorcycle accident and it was Hank who was there for him. He is truly a hero. On our way to Bruce's we passed the neighbor houses & there was a man outside standing there. My stomach was in knots. I asked Ken if he thought that could have been Hank. We had no clue if it was or not. My heart raced. I hoped I wouldn't bawl like crazy. I am extremely high pitched when I cry. I tried to psych myself up, tried to play out the conversation we'd have. Just how can you thank someone or even come close to thanking someone for giving you a second chance at life. Hank pulled me from the car. He was on the scene before the cop even arrived. There was gas & oil all over the place. He didn't have to do that, but he did. How could my thank you ever be enough? Clearly my emotions were running wild.

We pulled up to the house, Bruce wanted me to go in first, I was too nervous. What happened afterwards was a whirlwind of hugs and thank yous. He tried to shake my hand...nope, he was getting a hug!! We all hugged and he and his wife said to have a seat. We sat at the table, Hank said "have you been staying out from underneath crushed car seats?" When he found me I was smushed under the seat. It was a total ice breaker. It was awesome actually. We talked and talked. Then talked some more. He told me what he saw, the gruesomeness of the scene, the smell of blood, how my head was a pancake when he took me out & put me on the hood of the car, he spoke of the man from the pickup truck reeking of alcohol, what it looked like when my head retook shape. He spoke vividly of everything & how they prayed, he always wondered what happened to that family. Did they live? What about the baby? Was she alive? He told me everybody cried when the officer gave me CPR and I started coughing and crying.

My whole life I have searched for the Cop who saved my life. I never once even thought that a good Samaritan could have been the man who gave me life. Hank pulled me from the car. Had he not done that, who knows what would have happened. The way I see it is, he saved me. He was there, listening to Karen screaming frantically in the backseat, pointing to her pink hospital band. He realized there was a baby in there, took me out and then another hero gave me a breath. Do I know who the other hero is? No...but I will find out.

Meeting Hank & his wife was like meeting old friends. I am certain we will make many memories in the future. I am certain. I have a hero, and his name is Hank =)