Monthly Archives: July 2013

My New Theme

…. is magazine style.  If you noticed, I did have Choco Theme for a while, but I wanted my posts to show up in columns and as summaries.  My posts are lengthy and I wanted to give readers a little more to look at than one post.  We’ll see how this works… but…. HELP… I am already disappointed that not all photos are showing at the top of each post.  Not sure why this is happening.  I love the softer colors of my background, though.

Can anyone help me and give some advice on this picture problem?  Not sure why some are showing and some are not…. thanks in advance.   Of COURSE any comments and opinions are welcome.

Salad Mix Behind Food Poisoning Outbreak, Health Officials Say

Wow, had to just reblog this post real quick. My regular readers know that I’ve been a bit financially challenged lately. Well, if you look at the picture of the salad mix that has been causing the extensive and serious illnesses in 15 states, you will see the salad mix that I’ve been using…. or not using since our financial situation woes struck. We’ve also eaten other products–romaine lettuce and red cabbage.

Thank you to James’ World 2 for reporting this story.

UPDATED and EDiTED: 7/31/2013… 3:47PM

I’ve edited this post to delete reference to Wegman’s per the comment Valerie Fox, Media Specialist at Wegman’s to correct this story.  I am posting her comment to bring it up into the post:

Our product has not been implicated in the on-going cyclospora outbreak. The slideshow that accompanied the story on the Huffington Post, which included a photo of Wegmans Organic Spring Mix, was from food safety outbreaks of 2012.

I would suggest that if anyone has any questions or concerns to contact their local Wegman’s. Sorry for the inconvenience.

James' World



Click link below picture


Health officials in Iowa and Nebraska on Tuesday identified prepackaged salad mix as the source of a severe stomach bug that sickened hundreds of people in both states, but federal authorities said it’s not clear whether cyclospora outbreaks elsewhere in the U.S. are also linked to that produce.

Cyclospora is a rare parasite that causes a lengthy gastrointestinal illness, and outbreaks of the illness have been reported in 15 states. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Tuesday that it’s not clear whether all of the illnesses are linked to a single source. The outbreak has sickened at least 145 residents in Iowa and 78 in Nebraska.

Nebraska officials said the salad mix in question included iceberg and romaine lettuce, along with red cabbage and carrots, which came through national distribution chains. They did not identify specific brands. A Nebraska health department…

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Chicken Casserole

My next Posse
Recipe! Haven’t done much food posts lately, but couldn’t resist sharing this one found today on

Expression of Gratitude


A quick note to say Thank You to my readers.  Sometimes I flit in and out of here, with a quick reply to a comment, forgetting to say, “Thanks for stopping by.”  I see other bloggers do that and I really like that.  So I promise to remind myself to do the same.  There are some long time readers out there, as well as new friends and I thank each and ever one of you for taking the time to comment when really most people will do a quick “like.” Those are good, too, but I think bloggers really look forward to getting to know the people who are interested in what they have to say….. So, I say Thanks~!


Minimizing is Tough



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Of course I’d like my bookshelf to look like the one on the left, but it looks more like the one the right, but much more of a disaster, with books, papers and misc. stuff I don’t know what to do with, laying on top of books already there and/or sticking out of the front.

As follow-up to yesterday’s post, “Minimalistic Living,” today on compulsion, started to weed out knitting books from my bookshelf.  Let me just say this is the hardest thing I’ve had to do yet.  Books have been a source of comfort and escape my whole life.  It’s hard parting with them, but being assessed on the basis of productivity, I’m lovingly laying them off to the side.

I’ve already put it “out there” to my friends that I’m giving away books.  I don’t know.  I’m tired of looking at stuff and not feeling good or satisfied.  It’s like I still don’t know what I want and grasping at straws.  What I do know is that I only have one bookshelf with three shelves and once that fills up, and the shelves are bowing low, I’ve got to lighten the load.  It kills me to do this, but I’ve already committed to not knitting as much and more importantly, I’ve not really used these books.  So far, I’ve committed to eliminated almost half of my books and I think that’s pretty good.

Minimalistic Living


First of all, I need to disclose that I’ve edited comments I made in the blog listed below and have incorporated them into this post. After commenting, I felt that I could say more here, but I wanted to include some of those ideas.  Not sure if this is an accepted practice, but heck, they’re my own words.

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This is something new for me; but it’s been hovering around for a while now.  I’m just at the stage of reading more about it, but struggle with something that goes against what we, as a society, are taught. It’s the Minimalistic Lifestyle.  While we are taught that the more material possessions we collect, the better off we are and the happier we will be.  I subscribed to this blog, Minimalistic Living, and read posts about reducing the “things” and clutter in my life.  While I read, I was surprised that I wanted to read more.  DH is always saying that I have TOO much stuff.  I really don’t think he’s right given that we really don’t have too much by way of possessions to begin with.  I think it’s more that we’ve got to manage it better. Both of us are not good organizers at all.  It’s something that I feel I’ve got to do. Maybe it’s a way of regaining some kind of control over my life.

One thing that I feel I have to do, and I’ve resolved to do this, is destashing the bulk of my yarn.  My friends are shocked, but really, I feel myself floundering.  I realize that I have way too much yarn and it’s obvious that I will never use all of it up in my lifetime. Also, I was not an informed buyer.  I did not buy with a project in mind and as a result, I never have enough yarn in my stash to start a decent project other than shawls, cowls, and other smallish projects.  My family are not very keen on receiving woolen garments, so how many shawls or blankets can I make for myself?  For around three years or so I donated some nice items for church raffles, to create more winners than just two or three money winners.  Last time, I was very nicely rejected and so I don’t have that outlet any longer… Their loss, really.  Anyway, I’ve decided that I don’t just want to give it away.  I want to sell my stash to get back at least some of what I paid for it… Quite a bit of expensive yarn.  Getting rid of my yarn also frees up my time for other hobbies like spinning and the product? Yarn.  Ah, I feel like I’m on a tangent, so I’m reeling myself in….

The truth is that I don’t know much about this different lifestyle, but both my husband and myself are uncomfortable with the clutter and that happens a lot.  My apartment, the place I call home, is a collection of mismatched furniture which projects upon me the sense of unsettledness.  I have a nice, largish dining room but from the start, I didn’t want a dining room set.  I wanted open space and so we had a large, mostly empty room for a couple years.  Now there are two six foot lunch tables, shoved together to create a big square table with two vinyl tablecloths.  I have two bedroom pieces in my dining room.  One is an antique dresser that was my grandmothers’ and I simply will not give it away.  I actually used it for a changing table, covered with a lot of towels.  The second piece is another plain dresser.  I’m thinking that once I destash the yarn, I’ll have a place for the stuff in this dresser and maybe I can get rid of it.  A little plan.  Still, I’m uncomfortable with the place.  Ugh… maybe I just hate my life.

I’m wondering what “minimalist” really refers to.  Does it refer to diminishing the quantity of stuff I have, or in how I’m managing what we do have?  Can I get away with just organizing it better; or do I have to actually whittle down everything we have to consider myself conforming to the idea.  What IS the idea?  HA… I’m new to this.  Will I do better by not directly telling myself that I’ll be getting rid of stuff.  The biggest problem will be determining what the non-essential items are.  I love my computer, I love my ipad.  I loved my smartphone until I had to give it up. It’s been almost a year and I gotta say that I don’t miss it at all.  If given the chance in the future, I’m not sure I’d go for the smart phone.  That shit’s expensive and I’m not sure I want to hand over such a big chunk of my money just to have a smartphone.  I think it’s a waste of money.  The contracts, all the charges separated and charged.  The young people probably don’t remember when everything was one flat rate and data was unlimited.  It’s a disgrace what this world is turning into.

My hubby is always saying that I have too much stuff, yet he avoids getting rid of the garbage, non-essential stuff.  We both procrastinate making progress with all this. He keeps old, useless sneakers even after he’s purchased new ones.  He even still wears them and I know, too, because his feet stink to high heaven.  I can smell it through the sheets.  He takes too long sorting through stuff he intends on recycling; while I tend to keep things around because I fear that I’ll need that, whatever it is, almost as soon as I throw it away, and that HAS happened.

I’m realizing that stuff will not make me happy.  I knew this already, and yet, it’s news to me… scandalous! In a way, I feel as if I’m leading a minimalist life right now because our spending has dropped way down to just the essentials like food and when the time comes, school uniform and supplies. I’m realizing that I don’t have to buy new things every time school starts, well, except for uniforms, so I’m not going to buy all new. I’m going to buy new supplies once the old ones either break or until they really wear down.  HA… all this is kind of ironic, given that I have hoarding tendencies.  Just watching Extreme Hoarders on TV gives me the kick in the ass to clear off my cluttered spots.  My MIL was an extreme hoarder. Now that she lives in FL with her daughter, she doesn’t do it anymore. I’ve learned so much from her and I miss her.  I learned to reuse the wax paper bags from cereal boxes. That’s great, clean stuff after you shake it out and I haven’t bought new waxed paper in almost a decade and I never run out of it. I open the bag up at the seams and most times is the perfect size… Or I use them to throw out wet/food garbage (we can’t compost).

Everyone has that one niche, unique to them, that needs to be satisfied, whether it’s electronics, or clothing, or whatever. I think that with the things we don’t want to eliminate completely, there is the responsibility to not get carried away and indulge ourselves past the point that is reasonable.  I have a ton of clothes and this summer, I am seeing that I’m not wearing half of them. I’m so afraid that I’ll need something right when it’s not there. My style preferences change all the time, I wear a different style of clothes to church and have different one to just hang out.  My goal with this is to have a place, a hanger for everything, and whatever doesn’t have a place, needs to get donated somewhere. Since I discovered second hand shops, I’ve made it a point to get my clothes just from there. It’s fun to do and the quality is good to excellent; not to mention the reasonable prices.

So, we’ll see where this goes….

I am THE Sandwich

Daily Prompt: You, the Sandwich

If a restaurant were to name something after you, what would it be?  Describe it.
(Bonus points if you give us a recipe!)

Hmm… Actually, it’s already been out there as a Jahn’s ice cream creation called “The Kitchen Sink,” but I guess I can’t take on someone else’s name.  I remember getting the kitchen sink… but boy, what a waste of money.  It was gigantic and it was all mine.  OMG, really, I had no idea of how big these things were as it was for my First Communion and I was a little kid… I ate every bit of it.  I thought the name, “The Kitchen Sink” was promising an adventure… and it did.

So let’s get serious.  I’m all about the chocolate…


Fantasy 101

Park Place Expensive Real Estate Monopoly

What can I say.  I have no idea how to fantasize.  Nah that’s not true.  My problem is that I can do it TOO well. Over the years I’ve had to draw back from it because I get carried away too far into my dreams.  They become too real for me or I really, really feel that way, so I’ve stopped to kind of save myself from the constant disappointment.  The tween and teen me could sit in isolation for hours upon hours living out some kind of fantasy in my head.  I wasted too many hours living out a life that was fake… in my head.  What was really odd was that I actually felt that I did those things done in fantasy, in my real life.  I felt the satisfaction, the exhilaration, the sense of accomplishment felt so real.

I bring this up today after experiencing a flash fantasy in McDonald’s.  You know they’ve got that Monopoly game going on right now.  I pulled a Park Place and I could SWEAR that I previously pulled a Boardwalk.  Do you know what this means?  It means a cool million dollars~!  I just asked DH to check again for the match.  I’ve been daydreaming all the way home from there about winning $1,000,000.  Imagine!

The first thing I’d do is get health insurance for our family.  Then I envisioned myself walking into our church’s office and asking them how much their bills were this month (year?) and write them a check for that amount. Then maybe pay for the next step of renovations that are being planned as part of their 100 year anniversary, but I’m sure they can’t comfortably afford to pay for it.  What I really want to do with this is to support my church; and by that I mean to support our local church and not the archdiocese.  I cannot abide with how they are handling the predatory priest scandal and I refuse to give my money to that institution.  The same institution that even after they knew about what was going on, hid it and simply reassigned these priests and effectively foisted them onto another unsuspecting “Community of Faith.”  Let me tell you my trust is gone completely. I have an eight year old boy and it kills me to think that he could have been any of these boys who were betrayed and violated.  So, this is why I try to give my money directly to my church.

After that, I’d buy a house in a school district that best suits my son’s needs.  Yeah.  On the way home, I wasn’t driving and I had the opportunity to daydream about almost every house that caught my eye.  There was one that had blue/pink shingles that was really pretty and reminded me of a beautiful heathered blue yarn.  But then, if I won a million dollars I can have any colored shingle I wanted.  If you want to know more about my house fantasies, I suggest reading Dream Home, Dream On, a Daily Prompt assignment from not that long ago.

Ugh, the final answer is that we have two Park Place pieces.  It was good while it lasted.




I’ve Been Infiltrated~!


I was infiltrated.  LOL… I have to laugh because this term caught me off guard and for a minute I didn’t know what they were talking about.  I facebooked something witty about it because once I grab onto something, I don’t let go for a while, but I’m done now.

One of my blogging successes have been my posts on donating platelets, and I’m so grateful for the readers and happy that others like reading these posts because it’s so important to get the awareness going out there.  I’m very dedicated to doing this and have been, for the most part, pretty accepting when things don’t go 100% perfect.  Yesterday was one such day.

Everything progressed pretty much as expected until I was halfway through my donation.  First of all, I was a bit early and got put onto a machine that was new for me.  This one had a ball that told me when to squeeze and when to stop by blowing up, then deflating.  I even brought an audio book for the usual 90 minutes or so instead of watching TV.

Again, it was just about halfway through when my machine’s alarms started going off.  My techie tried to adjust the machine, and she kept coming back to touch my arm.  I had hardly noticed anything beyond a mild burning sensation; but during my last donation I had pain and this was nothing as compared to my last experience, “Wow, Uncommon Experience,” and that was considered a successful donation.  This time, I hardly felt anything and I ended up with a hematoma inside my arm.  This is how it happened.  During the apheresis process the blood is drawn out of your body, platelets are removed, then the blood is returned into your body and vein.  What was happening this time is that the blood never made it back into the vein and was spilling into the interior of my arm.  I had a huge large-ish and hard bump that hurt.  The apheresis was terminated and I got a nice bright purple bandage.  They put an ice pack over my bump and I was sent to eat cookies.

Later I was told that I did manage one full unit; but that I had to wait the full 56 days before my next donation because the loss of fluid.  that makes sense.  So, they apologized for what happened, but I realize that I should’ve reported that burning sensation.  So my platelet peeps, never hesitate to tell your techie if anything doesn’t feel normal.  Burning sensations, pain, and even if the process just doesn’t feel right.  I really felt like my arm might pop or something.  Last night my arm hurt something awful, but today it’s feeling much better and the bump has pretty much dispersed.

Pinch Me to Let Me Know I’m Alive

Weekly Writing Challenge: A Pinch of You

Sugar & Spice

Sugar & Spice (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

How does the old saying go — girls are “sugar and spice and everything nice,” and boys are “snips and snails and puppy dog tails”?

Aside from not knowing what a “snip” is, I don’t buy it; we’re much more complex than lollipops and unicorns and toy trucks and frogs. This week, we want a window into the complexity that is you. We want your best recipes.

ooh, ooh… I know what a “snip” is.  It means a little bit, a sliver of something.  Could be a snail OR a puppy dog tail.  I did not look that up, but it’s good enough.  I’ll have you know that the window into my mind has the shade pulled down.  You do NOT want to go there.  The complexity of me is the stuff of whirlwinds and headaches.

I am everything

and I am nothing.

I am your wildest dream

and I am your blackest nightmare.

I am soft and gentle

and I am hardcore without mercy.

I am dainty and pretty

and I am comfortably rustic.

I am a perfectionist

and I am the slob.

I am the unconditional lover

and I am the wall just outside infinity.

I am the calm before the storm

and I am the Perfect Storm.

Just because.

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