Monthly Archives: February 2012

The Perfect Sunday

Today was just one of those perfect days. Firstly, the weather was absolutely wonderful. It was sunny and bright, breezy, and just cool enough to be comfortable.

We started off the morning right with Church and Sunday School. Carrying on with 40 Days in the Word, which so far has been fascinating. Afterwards, we went to lunch with a couple from our Sunday school at this neat little cafe called the Australian Bakery. Joe got a Sausage & Egg Roll and I got a Vegetable Pasty.

We went grocery shopping where I bought everything necessary for a whole week with no meat. So far, Vegetarian life is REALLY easy, but it’s only been a week, so we shall see if it becomes harder. So, we come home and we clean out the fridge and put up our groceries and I’m trying to figure out how I can spend as much time in the sun as possible and I suggest, “Hey, let’s go buy a tree to plant.”

We headed to Home Depot and looked at all the possible trees, and I lusted over the Japanese Maples, that I’m too allergic too to actually own. Finally we picked out our tree, bought mulch and soil and edging bricks. It was creative to figure out how to get a tree home in our car, but we figured it out.

Joseph had been convinced that I wasn’t actually going to help plant the tree even though that I said I would, but I proved him wrong. I probably dug just as much hole as him and we worked pretty equally on refilling the hole and setting the bricks evenly around the tree.

This is our new, flowering, Kwanzan Cherry Tree. I can’t wait until it actually grows up some and flowers.

All in all, it was a wonderful day that I got to spend with my favorite person in the whole world, with some amazing weather.

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He Reads Cause He Cares

From a really early age, I’ve always enjoyed reading. When I was younger and in elementary school, I participated in Accelerated Reader where I got points for reading books (taking a test to prove I actually read it). In fourth grade, I kicked butt and got the most points in the whole school and won $100 which is a lot for a nine year old.

Needless to say, I love sticking my nose in a book and reading the day away. When I find a really good book, I get so enthralled that when it ends, I feel like I’ve lost really good friends. When the main character falls in love, so do I, when they are sad, I cry. Movies never live up to my expectations because I can imagine it so much better in my head.

One of the things that worried me when I first started dating Joe was because he was a self professed non-reader.

WHAT?

How are there non-readers in the world? What do you mean, you don’t read? It’s so wonderful and amazing. Nothing is better then that old book scent, the feel of well worn pages, a great book on a rainy day. Or a cold day. Or even a hot sunny day at the beach. I’ll read old books, new books, books in my Kindle app, stories never published anywhere but online but still amazing. There are books that are so great that I yearn to be able to write that well.

So, the idea of not being a reader is foreign. I’d read a book, he’d watch a football game (it’s how we survived our first football season).

But, then, using my womanly charm, I convinced him to read the first Harry Potter book. And as anyone who has enjoyed the first Harry Potter book can tell you, it’s a slippery slope to read all 4,182 pages (US, Hardback printed editions). And read he did, right up until he actually went to a midnight release of the last book and stayed up all night reading it.

There are a few other series that we’ve both read, but none that bonded us quite as well as Harry Potter. We went to the movies together, we played Harry Potter board games and we chatted and chatted and chatted about our shared love. Heck, we had red cats named Fred & George Weasley.

So, Joe reads well more than he used to, no doubt about that and I even would guess he enjoys it. So, I gave him a new challenge, although quite a bit easier. I’ve introduced the idea (forced him) of reading the Hunger Games. He’s read it all day today. He’s enjoying it. I can’t wait for him to finish it so that we can talk about it and I can go on and on and on about how amazing it is without spoiling it for him.

In a weird way, I think it’s makes me love him more because he doesn’t just share my interest he enjoys it. And what is sexier than a man who can enjoy a good book?

 

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{Lent} Life as a Vegetarian

Lent is a popular time for many people to either give up or pick up a habit that will help them grow closer to God. Of course, for the many people that don’t really give God much thought, it’s a good time period for them to better their lives. For Christians who practice Lent, it’s a time of repentance, prayer and self-denial with the idea that you will need to rely on God to get through.

One year I gave up chocolate, successfully, for the full 40 days (+ Sundays because I was unaware that those, apparently, don’t count.) Another year I decided to give up cursing – failed miserably and read the Bible every day – another failure.

So, for the past few days I have been wracking my brain. Do I want to give up something? Do I want to pick up a habit? Sunday I committed to 40 Days In the Word with my church, so reading the Bible every day was a habit I was already being forced to pick up. And then, it hit me, something that would truly be hard for me to do. Something that would honestly be not only a sacrifice, but something I would need God’s help with.

I’ve decided to give up meat. Thank goodness for the fact that Sunday’s are cool, so if I really miss meat, I can have it then. But, I think I can survive without meat. The hardest thing is going to be keeping meals both interesting, delicious and nutritionally fulfilling. I know how to get enough protein in when eating meat, I mean, it’s pretty easy. But cut that out and I’m lost.

Thankfully, I’ve already gotten a wealth of websites for vegetarian eating.

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Pantry Renovations

A few weeks ago, my sister in law pinned some awesome pantries. I had been avoiding my want to redo my pantry, but then I saw those and I was absolutely ruined. I really had no choice in the matter, it was no longer a want, but a need.

I hated so much about this pantry. I hated the wire shelves, the recycling taking up space, the bulky dog food bag, how nothing seemed to really look neat or fit well. It looked and felt all jumbled and it was just very blah. Considering my love for cooking, I really wanted to have a place I enjoyed to keep all my wonderful ingredients. And, I really hated the wire shelves!

 

Please, ignore the horrible paint splotches on the wall. We were testing paint colors, more about that later.

Here, we have a much neater and in love with pantry. Joseph, made and installed white, wooden shelves after I painted the walls a nice light gray. We went to home goods and picked up baskets to hold all my baking supplies, as well as the three baskets that hold pasta & pasta sauce, rice & bread crumbs, and breakfast foods (syrup, drink mix, PB, etc). There is a small green basket from home goods that holds snacks like Luna bars, chips & tuna and the dog food container on the floor is also from Home Goods.

We went to the Container store and got the wire shelves for onion & potatoes and the cans are on a riser so I can easily see everything I have. The dog treats on in a basket on the bottom shelf that I re-purposed from my old fruit bowl. All in all, this pantry is a lot more organized and neat, while also being attractive to the eyes. I have plans for the pantry door, both sides, but haven’t yet implemented them. I also might get Joseph to add a hook on either side of the walls to hang my aprons on.

All together, not too bad for an afternoon of work.

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Celebrate Good Times

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Valentine’s Day

So, I’m not sure anything annoys me more than hearing, “I love my {insert significant other} every day of the year, I don’t need a specific day to show them I love them.” It’s almost like there is this underlying judgement that if you choose to celebrate Valentine’s day, you clearly need a specific day to let your significant other know you love them.

1. You should treat your significant other well every day of the year.

Sure, from time to time you get in fights. You might hate them so much they are lucky you love them. They might grind on you every nerve, but if they are worth it, you treat them well every day of the year.

2. You should show your significant other you love them every day of the year.

Every day of the year you should go out of your way to show your love, whether in a minute and miniscule way or in a huge gesture every single day. Whether it’s making dinner, cleaning up after them or knowing enough to give them alone time, do something every day that makes them happier.

3. If you do 1 & 2 everyday, on occasion, to really blow them away, you need to step it up and make a gesture.

It’s a part of life, if you are awesome all the time, people are going to stop noticing. Therefore, you need to step it up on occasion and really put effort into showing your love. Some people choose to make the person they love feel special on Valentine’s day. It doesn’t mean they don’t love their significant other the rest of the year, it means they are making a specific effort to make them feel loved on a national holiday specifically created for that very purpose.

In fact, celebrating Valentine’s Day is akin to making your significant other’s birthday special, or making sure you get them a great Christmas present they would appreciate or bothering to remember all the other important dates, like an anniversary. So, unless it somehow makes you an inferior person, significant other or what have you to celebrate any other important date in the year, get over yourself and your anti-Valentines day superiority. If you don’t want to celebrate it that’s fine, but don’t act like those who do, don’t properly love their significant other the remainder of the year for stepping it up on February 14th.

What can I say? I love Valentine’s Day. I loved it when I was single and pretended to hate it and I love it as a married woman who gets to make my husband feel like a rockstar.

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