Saturday, November 26, 2011

Missing People

I'm having a bit of a self-pity day. I miss my life in Washington. More specifically, I miss my friends. I miss having someone to do something with, no matter what it was. I miss my full calendar as well as the spontaneous get-togethers.

Sometimes friendship takes effort, such as when disagreements happen or they're just starting, but most of the time I feel true friendship doesn't require much effort after awhile. It's when there's no stress involved in spending time with each other. You just do it. "Everyone come over for coffee tomorrow morning! Just not before 9 or I'll be in my pajamas." Or "Hey, I'm going to the mall later; wanna join?" Or "I need coffee. Meet me at 2?"


I miss these girls.

"Without friends no one would choose to live." - Aristotle

Friday, November 25, 2011


The other day it dawned on me that Thanksgiving is the one holiday I can't bear to have messed with. Back during my cult-church days, Thanksgiving was one of the few holidays we were allowed to celebrate. Therefore, I have a lot of feelings of tradition for it that I don't have for other holidays. I love Christmas, but I could care less how we celebrate it. Easter is just any other Sunday; if someone wants to invite me to do something that's great, but if not, I'm just as happy to take a nap. But Thanksgiving? I've been celebrating it my whole life, so it has to be just so or I feel like something's missing. =)

This year I felt very blessed to have Andrew home again for the 2nd Thanksgiving in a row. In a life where holidays with your spouse feel more like a privilege than an expectation, I have definitely learned not to take that for granted! I was hoping to have some of his single buddies over because I love feeding people who don't get home-cooked meals very often, but that didn't work out. It was nice, though, just the two of us!

We certainly didn't lack for food:
That would be turkey, rolls, mashed potatoes, gravy, sweet potato souffle, green bean casserole, and homemade cranberry sauce. It was all delicious, if I do say so myself.

Dessert was pumpkin cake. It was delicious too--so moist. I may not like pumpkin pie, but I am sure down with some pumpkin cake!

The birds appeared to be celebrating Thanksgiving too:

We tried to give the cats some turkey, but cats just really aren't into celebrating holidays. They refused the turkey. Silly cats.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

ABCs of Thankfulness

I used to enjoy doing this survey back when I used LiveJournal so I figure I'll continue the tradition. You will probably note that quite a few letters end up being a food or beverage. What can I say--I love food and beverages! ;-)

A - Army. It's not always an easy life, but I love the Army. It's awesome being part of something I believe in, it puts a roof over our heads, gives me adventures I'd never have otherwise, and allows me access to various benefits such as an amazing gym for free and a cheap place to get groceries. I also love the Army community (well, at least the cool percentage, haha). I'm also thankful that Andrew is enjoying his job, at least for now. =)

B - Butter. Butter makes the world a better place.

C - Cats. Without cats, my life would be lacking a good deal of laughs, affection, and companionship. Cats are such amazing creatures.

D - Dessert. I would be a miserable person without means of satisfying my sweet tooth.

E - Exercise. I'm glad I've grown to love it. I'm thankful for such an amazing gym to go to with such amazing trainers!

F - Friends. I have some of the best friends anyone could ask for. Considering I grew up close to friendless, this is something I'm grateful for every day. =)

G - Gas. Specifically, the fact that gas is now below three dollars here at Ft. Bliss.

H - Husband. I love my husband and I love being married. =)

I -In-laws. I'm pretty sure I have the best in-laws ever. Leaving out the fact that they spoil me way too much, they are wonderful people and so much fun to be around. I can totally be myself around them, and therefore I always look forward to visits to Michigan because I know they are going to be totally relaxing and devoid of any drama or the feeling of walking on eggshells.

J - Jesus. I'm thankful He died for me.

K - Kissing. It's fun, whether it's husbands or cats. ;-)

L - Literature. Books are awesome.

M - Mountains. They are so beautiful. I'm glad I'm getting to live near them once again. I'd rather have mountains than beach any day.

N -Nutrition. The study of nutrition is so fascinating to me and I become more and more obsessed with it all the time. I'm thankful that the truth is coming out about a lot of nutritional myths that have been popular for the last few decades and that people are starting to make healthier choices as a result.

O - Old Navy. It's one of my favorite places to shop.

P - Pizza. Yum.

Q - Quiet. Everyone needs some quiet in their lives, and as bored as I sometimes get these days, I am thankful for this period where I get to enjoy a quiet life. The busyness will start up again soon enough, so for now I'm making the most of it.

R - Root Beer. I don't let myself have soda too often, but when I do drink it, it has to be root beer.

S - School. I'm thankful I was finally able to make the jump this year and begin my college education. As stressful as school is sometimes, I thrive on it.

T - Texas. I may have pitched a fit about coming here at first, but it has grown on me. I don't want to live here forever but I am enjoying getting to experience a different culture. Texas definitely has a cult following, in a way! Haha

U - Unlimited. I pretty much love whenever anything is unlimited. ;-)

V - Vegetables. I'm glad I enjoy a good variety of vegetables. It makes being healthy a lot easier.

W - Wine. When you are sad, it makes you feel better. When you are happy, it makes you even happier. When you are stressed, it helps you relax. When you are with friends, it contributes to the laughter and the memories. Hooray for wine!

X - I think I'm going to skip X.

Y - Yoga. I'm glad I stopped being scared of it and jumped in. It's amazing and I know it's going to do a lot of positive things for my body.

Z - Zinc. It keeps you healthy and is found in such yummy foods as lobster, beef, and beans. ;-)

Oh cats...

We caught Foxy in a very relaxed sleeping position tonight. I couldn't not take pictures.

So dramatic.

(Note the awful state of our blinds. Always the evidence of pet owners. *sigh*)

Too cute.

I guess I should explain that Foxy is the newest member of the family. He showed up at the house a few months ago, all skin and bones and huge tail, and to nobody's real surprise, he's here to stay. He's still very timid around people, but otherwise seems to think he owns the place. =)

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

How many cups in a quart?

I have the worst memory for numbers. I don't know how many times I've been cooking/baking something in the kitchen and had to run over to my computer to figure out a kitchen conversion. No matter how many times I look them up, I never remember. I've seen a lot of ideas on Pinterest of storing things like grocery lists and recipes on the inside of cabinets, so suddenly it dawned on me today: make a conversion chart and put it on the inside of my baking cabinet!

I found this handy 2-page chart on the very first Google link that popped up. Not only does it have the basic conversions, it also has some other handy info like baking pan volume, how many marshmallows make 3 1/2 cups, and freezer life guidelines for various foods. Cool, huh?

I had to Scotch tape them up for now, but next time I'm at the store I'm going to get some laminating sheets and double-sided tape.

Just thought I'd pass this on for anyone who is as forgetful in the kitchen as I am! =)

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Random Updatey Things

+ It's funny how it can only take a few months to not be accustomed to cool temperatures anymore! It is currently about 67 degrees right now in El Paso and extremely windy. There is so much dust blowing around that you can't see very far into the distance, and the mountains are hidden. Apparently this is what the weather is like here late fall through spring though so I'd better get used to it!

+ I had a very healthy breakfast (spinach/fruit/yogurt/flaxseed smoothie) and a very healthy lunch (quinoa veggie pilaf and a sweet potato), so now I'm making up for it with nutella chocolate chip cookies fresh out of the oven. One day I will have a completely healthy diet. But today is not that day. ;-)

+ Last night I'm pretty sure I had another mini-stroke, the first one in about 3 years. It still wasn't as bad as my first one, but there's nothing at all fun about seeing black spots, then feeling your brain go into a deep fog, your hand go numb, and a dull headache to finish it all off. Ugh.

+ Our passports came in the mail today. It's always stressful waiting for them, especially the closer you get to your trip, so I'm thankful they came in after only 2 weeks. Now, I just have to worry that Andrew's leave won't be approved for some reason or my in-laws will get snowed in and not be able to make their flight! Ha. I've mentioned it on Facebook but not here, but in case anyone missed it: my amazing in-laws are taking us on a cruise for Christmas! I've never been on a cruise so I am super excited. They even booked us an outside room with a balcony. Watching Caribbean sunsets every night for a week? I'll take it. =)

+ I've decided to get a Kindle. I've been extremely resistant to the idea of an e-reader for some time now, and honestly I think I will always prefer real books, but I realized this last move that my book situation is really out of control for this point in my life. Maybe one day, when I have a permanent house and still no kids so I can devote a whole room to being an old-fashioned library, I can buy zillions of books and never get rid of any of them. But until then, I need to stop buying books. I have no room for them. =( I've decided on the Kindle Touch without 3G, I think:
+ Speaking of books, I've finished two since I made my goal of reading 25 by the end of the year. (Yes, I read fast.)

+ I've been accepted to El Paso Community College and also had my major approved by MyCAA for funding. Next step is registering once my transcripts get sent over! I'm so excited to start school again. As much as I enjoy being only a housewife every once in awhile, I can't do it for too long.

+ That's all for now. Happy November!