Sunday, March 25, 2012

Time to Relax...

The last two weeks have just been crazy: finishing term papers, homework, scrubbing the house down for birthday guests, finals...ugh! So much to get done!

I've learned a lot this past term. I think the most important thing is to better manage my time. I simply cannot handle that many high level classes and expect to do well, I just can't. Its not a question of intelligence, just time. See, I looked at what classes I have left before I can graduate and realized if I doubled up on things I could graduate three terms early-that's a good 6-9 months ahead of time! I didn't think it would be too hard, I would just have to stay up later some nights or wake up earlier (before munchkin) to snag a few extra hours.

It didn't work out that way. Between kiddo having several weeks of horrible sleep (still not sure why but it has resolved itself now), to hubby being gone for business trips, I didn't have all the time I thought I would. And then trying to balance the classload? Well, lets just say I dropped the ball. Several times. Which made the last two weeks as I scrambled to finish papers and get every last point I possibly could in even more stressful, all while trying to find time to study for finals.

But, that's all behind me now. And while I don't feel happy with the work I turned in I'm pretty sure I'll pass all the classes, definitely won't be a 4.0 this term but I'll at least pass (I think...I hope.)

On top of that it was munchkin's birthday and relatives were coming from out of town. Now, I know my family, they really don't care if everything is dusted and scrubbed and sanitized. I mean, in a way they do, but they aren't going to do what my mother-in-law does and screech at me if there is a dog hair on the couch (which, considering the Ol' Man is a shepherd and Fat Cat is a long-hair I believe that last time my couch had ZERO pet hairs was on the showroom floor.) But I hate to have guests come and the place is a mess-which meant lots of scrubbing.

Have you ever tried scrubbing with a toddler? It is...interesting. The place got clean, I'm still not sure how, but it did (though I had twice the amount of laundry and I think the cat got dumped in the mop bucket once). It even looked nice with the flowers hubby brought home.

It was great seeing everyone, and of course they spoiled munchkin rotten but that's what grandparents are supposed to do. She had a very interesting birthday what with the insane amount of snow and lack of power. It snowed so much it broke the roof of our deck and knocked down a ton of branches all over. Oh well, I'm hoping we can convert a part of the deck into a sunroom and the first step will be putting up the solar panels-so I'm not too upset about the roof. It could have been much worse.

So, that's been the last two weeks for me: crazy school schedule, visitors, munchkin's birthday...but now everything has calmed down. It feels rather odd to not be rushing around trying to get a zillion things done at once. I keep feeling guilty when I sit down with a magazine, as if here is one last project to finish, one last chore I haven't done yet. Last night I slept better than I have in weeks-stupid stress.

Spring term starts in a week and I've chosen a much easier schedule. I'd love to graduate sooner (I've been in school long enough to have a couple Ph.Ds-sheesh) but I also would like to graduate with honors and that's not going to happen if I try to overload again. And, with spring/summer coming, I want to spend time with munchkin in the gardens and not feel guilty about it. Here's to next term, to time-management, to good grades, and to snuggles from kiddo! I think I'm gonna take a bubble bath and just relax.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Happy Birthday Munckin! (A Letter to Kiddo)

(My little girl turned TWO today, can you believe that?)

Happy birthday Miss M!

Two years ago you showed up and turned my life upside down, I can't believe how the time has flown by! You made me realize just how dull and boring my life had become and set me to changing things. I love you, my little keiki.

What a crazy day, we'd planned a big luau party to celebrate but we woke up to 6 inches of SNOW! (Did you wish for snow for your birthday? Someone was obviously listening!) Around 6am the power went out and didn't come back until midnight. And it kept snowing. And snowing. And snowing.

We had to cancel the party but I don't think you minded too much. We got to have fun getting the fire going and watching the tree branches break and fall from the weight of the snow. It was rather spooky to hear the groaning and cracking, and then see a big limb come tumbling down. We even drove into town at one point to see how everyone else was doing. The snow was so wet and heavy it destroyed many of the decorative plum trees (which had just started to blossom) splitting them right down the middle when opposite branches became filled with snow.

Your Nana and Papa had come over from NE Oregon to be here for your big day and we were so excited to set out your presents for you to wake up to. I know you will love the new rocking horse (once you're able to get in the saddlemit is huge!) and you're already cooking up a storm with the toy kitchen. We weren't able to bake a cake but hopefully the strawberries and whip cream were a good substitute (I probably used too much whip cream but it was the only way to get the candles to stay upright!).

I still can't believe you're two years old. You're running around this place like a sugar-crazed Tasmanian devil, you've got the cat, your Dad and your Papa all wrapped around your little finger, and you are already a social butterfly, just like your Dad. I love you kiddo-don't grow up too fast OK?

Hugs and loves

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Ahhhhhh Martha!

I subscribe to the Martha Stewart Living catalog, mostly because I love to see the new and interesting things I could make if I just had the skill/time/inclination. Around the holidays I used to rely on the magazine for recipes, especially for cookies and cakes; and my family's favorite roasted turkey is still the recipe from the November 2006 magazine: Roast Turkey with Quince Glaze.

Since cutting out sugar and processed carbs however, Martha has not been my friend. Usually her recipes call for an ingredient I don't really want to add and when I've tried to substitute with a different version (honey in place of sugar for example) I didn't get great results. The last few months have been especially trying with all the sweet, gooey, holiday fair.

So it was pleasantly surprising to sit down with the April edition and find recipes for leg of lamb stew, roasted asparagus, baked salmon, and an entire section of eggs. True the egg section leans more towards sugary desserts but the leg of lamb stew had me drooling. I do believe a store run is needed to add to the supplies!

Today we have a picnic planned, though as I look out the window at thick gray clouds I have to wonder if its a very good plan. I need to go to the fish weir to interview the biologists about the fish runs. Since the weir grounds have been turned into a park/teaching area with some minor hiking trails along the river I figured on dragging the family with me and making it a day of being out in the fresh air. A toddler in the cold and wet doesn't exactly sound like fun though. Here's hoping those clouds will pass by and the sun will shine!

Thursday, March 1, 2012


Hello everyone!

Welcome to the new digs, pretty swanky huh? Yeah, they're basically the same as the last place, just a new name. I decided to combine my gardening interest with my health/food interest, plus everything else I do, and wanted to shake things up a bit.

So, what to expect:

Hopefully less of me whining about how I fell off the wagon and ate a candy bar and haven't lost weight and what a horrible person I am. Don't get me wrong, I'm still going to whine (what good is a blog if you can't vent?), just hopefully less.

More posts on plants, gardening, horses (she'll be here in May!), being a college student and a full time mom, and whatever passing thought that flutters by (ooo look, a kitty!).

You will still find recipes and cooking experiments but I've found that days, sometimes weeks, go by before I find something cooking related I really want to share. If that's all you're looking for please visit:

Your Lighter Side - Low carb blog and recipe heaven, I go here when I'm bored and don't want to think up something new by myself.

Jennifer's Blog - By the writer of "Odd Bits" and "Bones", occasionally she has recipes, more often the posts are about great foods, great meals, and interesting chefs. I find her inspiring when I want to try something really new.

Mark's Daily Apple - Use the search menu, you'll find tons of awesome recipes for, well, everything! Plus the daily posts are very informative with good source material.

Please be prepared for some grammar and formatting issues as I get everything moved over and re-designed. I hope you like the new blog!