Friday, March 29, 2013

Good Friday

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Easter French Toast

I was craving some french toast the other night after work so I decided to make it for dinner. 

The fact that I had a loaf of Grandma's homemade bread in the freezer made the whole thing that much better.

I'm not really a french toast connoisseur or anything but I thought it tasted pretty good. So here's what I did.

Gathered my ingredients. 

  • Homemade Bread
  • Milk
  • Farm Fresh Eggs
  • Cinnamon
  • Cloves
  • Honey
  • Vanilla

*A pat of butter for the griddle if you like.

Grandma's bread is the BEST!

Slice up the bread into whatever thickness you prefer.
Crack a couple eggs in a bowl and add some milk. 
Whisk it up. 

Pour in some vanilla. I'd say a tbsp or so.
Depends on what you like really.

Next add the cinnamon. I actually ended up adding extra after
all ingredients were together because I LOVE cinnamon.
Probably a tbsp in all.

A little nutmeg. I probably put in 1/4 tsp.

A tbsp of honey or so. 

Drop in a slice of bread. 

Dunk it to coat well

Toss on your hot griddle. *You can put butter on the griddle before you do this if you like.

Continue the process until...

...all your bread is on the griddle.
Because I like my french toast extra flavorful I melted a tbsp of butter and then stirred in a tsp of cinnamon and then brushed it on the bread. Like so. 

Mix ingredients.
Brush on bread. Continue cooking.
Once it's a nice golden color and no longer soggy it's ready and you can remove from heat and put on a plate.

I decided to cut mine into cute little shapes using cookie cutters. 

An Easter bunny.

And a couple Easter eggs. 

Sprinkle with powdered sugar if you like and then serve with syrup, honey, fruit or whatever you want. 

Extra slices.
You can store the extra slices in the fridge for a few days or wrap them up and toss them in the freezer for quick meals later on. They freeze beautifully:)

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Thursday, March 28, 2013

Email Hate: Questions to ask yourself

Well before I get very far I might want to point out that I haven't been getting mean hate mail as the title might make it sound. I mostly just want to vent about email.

Email has become a way of life.

Everyone does it. Well most people anyway.

It can be great. It can save time. It can help by minimizing interruptions in your life.

I can't help but wonder though, how much time is actually wasted with email?

How many times do you email someone, or have them email you, and they leave out important details that you need? So you email them back with questions. Then, they completely ignore the questions that you asked, but ask you questions, or, give you additional information that causes more problems or questions to arrive.

Sometimes I feel like I'm stuck in a game of email ping-pong. How many times can we email back and forth before we are done?

Before you know it, you have 17 back and forth emails and you still don't have all the info you need. It can be a nightmare.

Plus, I think email has made us lazy. I'll be the first to admit I have emailed to ask someone a question, when I could have searched and found the answer myself. Email often allows us to easily shlep (fun word:) our problems/questions onto someone else in hopes that they will fix it. Many times I have found that this can lead to my own game of email ping-pong.

With all these problems I've decided there should be rules to follow when you email someone. The only problem is that the rules might vary with different situations but I think some of these should be pretty universal.

So, without further ado...

Questions to ask yourself before sending an email

  • Did I answer all questions asked of me? If not, answer them. 
  • Can I find the answer to my questions before I ask them? If yes, don't waste someone else's time. 
  • Am I providing all of the information the recipient needs? If not, why the heck not???
  • Is there information that I could provide to prevent further delays/emails? If so, provide it. 
  • Is this email going to be too confusing? Should I just call? Sometimes it's just easier to pick up the phone. 
  • Have I read through my email before sending to ensure accuracy? Don't make someone email you back just to ask what the heck you are talking about. 

Do you have any tips to prevent the back and forth, that seems inevitable, with email?

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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Top 10 Tuesday: Follow Up

Well, it's been a bit busy around here lately so I didn't finish everything on my list from last week. 

1. Pay the water bill Probably a good thing I did this since I like my clean laundry and showering:)
2. Clip and organize my coupons
3. Go grocery shopping - need chicken, triscuits and other stuff I can't think of at the moment...
4. Put together an Easter basket for my God-daughter Zoey:) This is her first Easter and I'm super excited. Her mommy, Maria, is my cousin and one of my very best friends. 
5. Vacuum the upstairs at my house - pretty sure I lose enough hair in a day to make a wig. - Did not do this but maybe tonight:)
6. Go buy all my garden seeds so I have them for when it's time to plant.
7. Drop $10 off to my priest for the Basketball bracket my husband is doing at church. We are currently tied for first but that probably won't last long since we had Gonzaga going to the Championship. oh well. 
8. Go by the bank. Need to go again. dangit. 
9. Continue reading my books for Lent. Everynight I crawl in bed and pass out. I haven't been reading anything at all. Need to try to finish though.
10. Talk to Seth about when and where we should vacation:) We both need one!  Talked about it. Still no decision. 

Hopefully, I will get more accomplished this week because I think my list has gotten longer. Doesn't it always?

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Friday, March 22, 2013

March Madness!

I've decided employers should just give all employees the month of March off. Good idea, right?

Think about it though. How many employees take off a week or so during March to go on Spring Break with their kids? I'm going to guess a lot. I'm sure it's probably not even half but I bet it's still quite a few people who are out of the office. 

Then you have to consider March Madness. How much work time is wasted (if you consider this wasting;) while employees watch the games at work or spend countless hours checking and comparing their brackets, pulling up scores or at the very least talking about the games constantly? A LOT. 

Heck, yesterday afternoon, I was watching Davidson beat Marquette in the last few seconds of the game (March Madness, indeed) with my boss on his computer!

I even wasted 3 minutes earlier today sorting my m&m's into two groups. 
Group 1 consisted of reds and blues. (Jayhawks)
Group 2 consisted of all of the other colors. (All the other teams)

I ate Group 2 (all the other teams) first and saved my reds and blues (Jayhawks) until the very end. As it should be. 

Are you following the madness??

Rock Chalk Jayhawks!

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Thursday, March 21, 2013

Outsmarted by my Puppy

It's official. My puppy has outsmarted me. 

Look how freakin' cute he was!!

Since we live out in the country we let Gunnar run free a lot of the time. 

He pretty much has the best life a puppy could ask for if you ask me. Tons of birds to chase. A pond to splash into when it's hot out. Trees and tall grass to run through and LOTS of sticks to chew on. 

Unfortunately, he is still a puppy and chews destroys things that aren't sticks or bones.

For example:
The neighbors delivered packages. 
The neighbors kids toys - balls of every shape and size for every sport you can imagine.
The nice wooden furniture on our porch.
Shoes - especially boots.
Door handles that have yet to be put on our new building (How could this be enjoyable??)

Exhibit 542 of the destruction.

Lucky for us we have awesome neighbors who have been so nice about our puppy eating their things. They have been more than patient as they wait for new deliveries arrive of items I have had to re-order for them. 

That's the problem though, I'm sick of having to re-buy things because my darn dog keeps eating them! I want him to stop eating things he shouldn't. 

So, in comes the solution, we thought. 

We have a great fenced in area of our yard that is the perfect spot for a puppy. It's got tons of room and shade trees and a big shed that Gunnar can go into to get out of the elements or take a little nap. The only problem was that Gunnar's little ninja self could jump up and then climb over the short part of the fence. I estimate he would wait approximately 30 seconds for my car to be out of sight in the morning and he would be over that fence. 

Sneaky little guy. 

Don't let that face fool ya. He's a smart one!
Anyways, my husband was home a few weekends ago, and I'm sure he was tired of my complaining, so he fixed the fence. He put a couple rows of electric fencing up above where Gunnar would climb out in order to prevent him from escaping 

You know what, it worked like a charm! Day after day I would come home and there would be my sweet puppy, ready to come out to play. 

Well, he's figured me out. In the mornings he would always run up to great me and say hello before I went to work, but he's learned. He knows I'm going to put him in his pen and he doesn't come running anymore. Actually, he runs the opposite direction. 

Quick summary of the week:

Monday - Ran in to the garage to great me and I put him in his pen for the day.
Tuesday - Ran in to see me and got about 2 feet away. Stopped. Ran away as far and fast as possible.
Wednesday - I tricked him and called him to the front door. He thought he was going to be coming inside to hang out with me. Little did he know I was going to put his little butt in his pen.
Thursday - I thought I would try the front door again. Opened it. Called for him. Watched his brown body bounce over the tall grass farther and farther away until I couldn't see him anymore. Dang it.

We will just have to wait and see what tomorrow brings. 

Good thing he's cute!

Seriously, how cute was he? I want another puppy. (What ya think Seth?)
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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Top 10 Tuesday: To-Do List

It's Tuesday!!

That means it's time for another Top 10 Tuesday list:) 

I feel like I have been so busy these past few days that I haven't even thought about writing. I even debated just skipping a blog post for today but I skipped yesterday because I was beyond busy. 

So, I have decide to just make a short and sweet "To-Do" list for todays Top 10. Basically, these are things on my to-do list for the week. 

1. Pay the water bill
2. Clip and organize my coupons
3. Go grocery shopping - need chicken, triscuits and other stuff I can't think of at the moment...
4. Put together an Easter basket for my God-daughter Zoey:) This is her first Easter and I'm super excited. Her mommy, Maria, is my cousin and one of my very best friends. 
5. Vacuum the upstairs at my house - pretty sure I lose enough hair in a day to make a wig. 
6. Go buy all my garden seeds so I have them for when it's time to plant.
7. Drop $10 off to my priest for the Basketball bracket my husband is doing at church.
8. Go by the bank.
9. Continue reading my books for Lent.
10. Talk to Seth about when and where we should vacation:) We both need one!

Let's see how many of these things I actually get accomplished. Hopefully all of them. 

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Thursday, March 14, 2013

Gardening: Seeds coming up

Well, I got everything planted and was super excited to see some of the seeds popping up!

Here is the lettuce that I planted as seeds. It's just peeking through and I must say I was pleasantly surprised that it made it that far:)

You can see a little broader view of the garden here with the lettuce and tomato plants as well as the strawberries in the row on the right.

This is the radishes popping up. Check out the stripes on that lawn!! 

 These are how tiny the tomato plants were when I bought them from Home Depot. I felt ridiculous leaving several feet of empty space in between each of the plants. Lets say it's a good thing I left the space...

The jalapenos already growing here.

Coming up next is the full size plants!

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Wednesday, March 13, 2013


Wow, what an exciting day to be a Catholic!

The cardinals have elected Jorge Mario Bergoglio as the new Pope of the Catholic Church. He has chosen the name Pope Francis I.

I was on my lunch hour at my parents house when I got a text from telling me that there was white smoke and a new Pope had been elected. My mom and I anxiously watched the news until Pope Francis I came out onto the balcony in St. Peter's Square to give the Papal Blessing.

It was a pretty amazing moment to watch even if it was on tv. Eight years ago when Pope Benedict was elected my mom happened to be in Rome, on vacation, and she said it was the experience of a lifetime. I'm hoping someday I may get that opportunity as well.

Overall, not a bad way to spend a lunch hour (and a half, oops) I will tell you that!

All images pulled form Bing Images.

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Gardening: In the beginning

With Daylight Savings time starting this past weekend I have been starting to get excited for Spring!

I'm beyond sick of the cold and snowy weather we have had here in Kansas this winter. I would move someplace warm in a second if I could talk my whole family and husband into it. Unfortunately, that would require A LOT of people moving and my husband loves the snow and cold (aka: hunting season) so it doesn't look like I'll be moving anytime soon. 

Thank goodness Spring is right around the corner though. With Spring comes the planting of my garden which I'm super excited about. 

Last year was my first Spring and Summer, as a wife, in our new home, which meant a new garden. 

My mom had a garden my whole life growing up and I helped with it some but the older I got the less I helped. 

I decided it would be fun to have my own garden and decided to jump right into this little venture of planting one. Honestly, I've had plants in the past and promptly killed them because I forgot to water so I wasn't overly optimistic when starting out. 

I think my husband was also a little bit hesitant to till up "his" yard because let's just say he LOVES his yard. We had no proof that I would be able to garden and he really didn't want to till up a good hunk of his beautiful-perfectly-manicured-mower-striped lawn if my gardening skills were lacking. 
In case you are wondering just how much he loves the yard I will tell you it's the background photo on his phone, not me, not our puppy, "his" yard. ha. 

Anyway's, I finally talked him into tilling me up a small but still decent sized area to give my gardening skills a chance. The photos were taken on April 8th of last year (2012). 

This is my garden after my father-in-law disced up the yard.

Doesn't look very promising, huh? Check out that green lawn though!

Seth then helped me till up the disced area to make the garden a little more rectangular and have straighter edges. 

Now it was up to me to plant, water, and grow all those plants. 

How do you think I did? 

Check back to find out:)

(Hint: Let's just say Seth didn't mind that the garden took up valuable yard space)

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Top 10 Tuesday: Garden Plants

Below you will find 10 of the plants that I cannot wait to plant and have fresh produce from. Most of these plants are the same as what I planted last year but I love them so much I will plant them again this year. 

1.Tomatoes - My very favorite item from the garden! I like to plant the big slicer tomatoes as well as some cherry tomatoes for salads and such. I'm hoping to find the kind my mom planted last year that are smaller than a Roma but bigger than a Grape tomato. They were awesome.

2. Strawberries - When you plant strawberries it usually takes a year before they produce and since I planted last year I'm hoping to have them this year. I love to make freezer jam with strawberries. 

3. Corn - Does anything say summer more than a nice ear of corn on the cob? I didn't think so.

4. Potatoes - Digging up potatoes is like hunting for buried treasure. It's so exciting when you pull them out of the ground and then they keep for such a long time in a cool dry place. 

5. Onions - I love onions. On salads, sandwiches, in potatoes, on kabobs...pretty much anywhere really.

6. Lettuce - Making a salad with fresh lettuce from your own garden is strangely satisfying. Make sure you wash it good to get the dirt off and then throw it in salad spinner to dry off. Yum!

7. Peppers - These are so great to dice up and throw on fresh salads or with the onions on some kabobs. My favorite are probably the red peppers while my husband loves the green.

8. Green Beans - For some reason I forgot to plant these last year and I was super disappointed. Hoping to plant a bunch and then can them for the winter.

9. Cucumbers - My cucumbers last year turned out pretty bad. I think I got a bad variety (that's my excuse anyway). This year I want to try planting some pickling cucumbers and then make homemade pickles. Seth and I both really like pickles so why not.

10. Jalapenos - This goes in my garden for Seth mainly. He loves things hot and spicy and jalapenos are just that. I used a ton of them in the salsa I canned last year but I'm hoping to put in two plants this year so I can can (haha) some as well. 

The plants listed above are just some of what I will be planting. Do you have favorites to plant in your garden?

I hope the weather cooperates so I can get everything in on time this year and have an abundant harvest like last year. 

Check back tomorrow for more about my garden:)


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