Thursday, November 14, 2019

My Biggest Struggle




Tuesday was not a good day for me.   I woke up at 4 o'clock in the morning with that anxious pit in my stomach that I know so well.  It comes and goes in waves.  Tuesday morning it was there in full force.  
What triggered it? Could be anything. Or nothing.  John was not feeling well the day before.  He was running a temperature and I was pretty sure he was going to have to stay home sick on Tuesday.  I was worried about him missing a test.  Was he concerned? No. But I was.  My mom also was not feeling well.  I was hoping she was getting a good nights sleep.  Was she still awake? Should I check? Over the weekend I started thinking about Christmas gifts. Who to buy for and what to buy? Will I have enough time for shopping?  Will they even like what I pick out? The holidays can get stressful that way. Will all the Halloween candy I've been sneaking every night make me fat? Yes, probably. Wish I had a piece right now. 
And so on and so on. And so on...

Stress and anxiety can be brought on by the littlest things.  Little things in my mind that escalate into big things. I am the type of person who worries about everything.  Sometimes I worry so much I make myself ill.  My whole life I've battled stomach aches and headaches as a result of stress.  The good news is now I know that when I'm having a bad moment or a bad day it IS only temporary and it WILL pass.  My Tuesday 4 am experience resulted in many cups of coffee, me pacing around the kitchen for a half hour, consumption of more Halloween candy, and going outside into the freezing cold to take some deep breaths....which actually did help.  John woke up early still not feeling well.  He took the day off from school and I decided to take the day off with him.  I had emotionally drained myself with mindless worries and needed to recharge.  

Unfortunately this is a pattern with me.  I am telling you this because if you also struggle with stress or worries of any kind, just know you are not alone.  It happens to many of us and we all have different ways of coping.  I find comfort in appreciating the little things.  A pair of cozy pajamas, a cup of hot herbal tea with lemon, a steaming hot shower, putting my worries aside and getting lost in a good book or TV show. These ordinary things can take on a whole new meaning if you approach them as therapeutic. Sometimes it takes taking a day off from work and staying home and hibernating before facing the world again.  I find comfort in my family and friends.  Hearing John's laugh, a text from a friend to say hello, watching a Hallmark movie with my mom.  All these things calm my nerves and the wave passes.  

By Wednesday John was back to school feeling better and so was I.  In the back of my mind all my worries are still swirling around.  They are never really gone, but I've pushed them aside for now.  It will be OK.  I will get it all done.  I will find ways to take time for myself.  I will appreciate the little things.  John can make up his test. My mom is doing fine.  She didn't sleep great but she had a nap the next afternoon.  Christmas will come whether I finish my shopping or not.  I've always managed to get it all done and I will this year too.  As for the Halloween candy....well, I should probably lay off the Kit Kat's.

Today I had to run a quick errand at Whole Foods.  I had only a few minutes because from there I was picking John up at school.  As usual I was running late and time was tight. It was very busy and all the customers had seemingly overflowing shopping carts.  I was literally buying one thing.  Oh no.  I'm going to be late picking up John.  Why did I try to squeeze this errand in?...was all that was going through my mind.  Just then a very nice man (who had a full cart!) let me go in front of him.  I was so happy.  He had no idea what a relief that was for me. Little acts of kindness like that can mean to world to someone.  I try to remember that as I go through my days.  Maybe I can help someone like that man helped me today.  He relived my stress and reminded me that there are still nice people in the world.  

If you struggle with worries like I do just remember the wave will pass. You will find something good in your day.  Even if its just something small.  
It will help you get through it. 

Let yourself recharge and tomorrow will be a better day!  

XO 

Monday, November 11, 2019

Baked Egg Breakfast Sandwiches! ♥

Hell Friends! 


This past weekend I tried my hand at baked eggs in the oven.  I had no idea how easy it was!  

I got this idea from one of Rob's cousins, who every year when we go on summer vacations makes the whole family egg sandwiches for breakfast.  I've been wanted to try making them for ages.  Honestly I don't know why I waited so long. 

They were a cinch to make and John & Rob absolutely love them! 






All you do is grease a muffin tin with nonstick spray....

Crack an egg in the cup and bake in a 350 degree oven for 15 mins.  






I tried mine 2 ways.  One I left as is....and one I scrambled up with a splash of milk. 
Your choice on however you like your eggs 

I seasoned both with salt and pepper too! 






While they are baking toast your English muffins (or toast, bagels, or biscuits : ) 






 When the eggs are done pop them out of the tin and place on the buttered muffin. 





Top with a slice of cheese~

(add bacon, sausage patty, avocado...whatever you like!) 






Top with the other half of buttered muffin and Enjoy!! 





So good!! 

I really like these as a quick on the go breakfast! Pinterest tells me I can make a bunch ahead of time and freeze them but I haven't tried that yet.  If you have please let me know they turn out because....wow, what a time saver that would be : ) 





Happy Monday Everyone! I hope your week is off to a good start! 

XOXO 

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Happy First Week of November! ♥

Hello Friends! 

Well, another Halloween has come and gone! 

2015 vs. 2019 

We had a fun night.  Despite some stormy weather, nothing would stop this guy from trick or treating.  Yes, our Halloween's are a bit different now.  He no longer needs my hand to guide him from door to door, and prefers to go with his "buddies" than boring old mom.  But I'm always there in the background watching...and picking the peanut butter cups out of his bag.  One because he can't eat them...and two because I love them!  





My friend Courtney puts out an amazing spread of Halloween treats before trick or treating. 
We look forward to it every year! 


The kids had a ball.  I'm so glad he hasn't outgrown it yet : ) 




Am I the only one whose been living on a steady diet of  peanut butter cups and Milky Ways?  I can't be!  All I do is complain about it, yet I can't stop. 

This pace will continue until New Years! 





The days are getting really chilly now.  We've had our first fire in the wood burner and I've smelt that hint of frost in the air.  Change is coming.....




I'll still enjoy lovely fall afternoons with chocolate chip cookies and Snoopy 




And a steaming bowl of turkey chilli (easy recipe linked here if you're interested





We turned our clocks back on Saturday so it's dark by 4:30.  The nights are long.  More time for this... 




I'll soak up all the last bits of Fall because you know what's right around the corner??? 



This! 

(I may or may not have already started listening to Christmas music.... just saying! )

My tree goes up in two weeks and I'm pretty excited about it.  

Happy first week of November! The official start to all things holiday!

Get ready! XO 


Wednesday, October 30, 2019

One More Sleep...





One more sleep till the big night and as you can see....I'm very excited!!  

Our plan is an early dinner and then meeting up with friends to trick or treat at 5:30.  The weather is looking like rain, so praying it will hold off so we don't get soaked.  Fingers crossed! 

Have a happy and safe Halloween celebration, friends!  

I can't believe Friday is November 1st. The holiday season has officially begun! :)



Monday, October 28, 2019

How I Prepare Acorn Squash ♥

Hello Friends! Happy Monday! 

I hope you all had a nice weekend 

Last night on a whim I decided to make a quick video while I was making dinner.  I shared with you how I like to prepare acorn squash.  

Squash is one of my favorite fall/winter veggies!  I eat it all different ways but here's a simple method I do the most.  

After cutting and seeding the squash, I steam it in the microwave.  After it's cooked I add butter, cinnamon, a tiny dash of nutmeg and a sprinkle of BROWN SUGAR (which I forgot to show you in the video : ) and pop it into the oven to get all melty and delicious.

  The brown sugar will give the squash and extra added sweetness, so try not to forget it like I did! 





Once it's done just take a fork and dig right in!  It's a great side dish.  Last night I made meatloaf with potatoes & onions, broccoli, salad, and squash! It had been raining all day so this was the perfect October comfort meal.  


Please forgive my bad lighting and wonky camera skills.  I'm still getting used to this!  





I hope you enjoy this little video and have a great day!!!


xoxo

Friday, October 25, 2019

Pumpkin Spice Hot Chocolate ♥

Hello Friends! Happy Friday! 


So it's no secret I am a lover of pumpkin spice coffee.  I know, it's not for everyone, but for me I'm all in!  From Sept-Nov it's pretty much all I drink.  That is until I discovered pumpkin spice hot chocolate!  Have you ever had it?  I tried it for the first time a few weeks ago and I was instantly hooked.  This hot drink combines 2 of my favorite things.  Chocolate and pumpkin!
How could I go wrong?

I will admit it takes a little effort.  You have to get a pan out and plan on whisking for a few minutes. But I assure you, if you want to treat yourself to something festive on Halloween night, give it a try!
It's DELICIOUS~ 


The recipe comes from The Striped Spatula 





1 1/4 cups milk
1-2 tablespoons  pumpkin puree
1-2 tablespoons light brown sugar (depending how sweet you want it)
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1/8 tsp ground ginger
a pinch of ground cloves
a pinch of sea salt
3 oz. chocolate chips (or about 1/2 cup)

In a small pot whisk together all ingredients except for the chocolate.  Heat over medium-low heat, constantly whisking so all the spices and pumpkin are incorporated into the milk. Continue doing so until bubbles start to form around the side of the pan. 

Reduce heat to low and add chocolate.  Whisk constantly until the chocolate is melted, glossy, and slightly thickened, about 1-2 minutes. 

Pour into a mug and top with whip cream and sprinkles! 

*TIPS*

It's important to constantly whisk while this is cooking.  You want to make sure all your spices and chocolate are incorporated and also make sure the milk doesn't burn.  If you keep WHISKING your hot chocolate will be thick and creamy  ♥

The recipe calls for using semi sweet chocolate. I used milk chocolate chips because that's what I had.  It came out delicious.  

I used 1 heaping tablespoon of canned pumpkin and 1 tablespoon of brown sugar.  In my opinion it was just enough.  Not too sweet and not overly pumpkin-y.  Just right : ) 

This recipe makes one large mug or 2 small mugs of goodness! 


Click the link to The Striped Spatula for more tips and variations of this recipe, including an adult version (spiked with bourbon!) and a white chocolate version which I am dying to try! 







Enjoy! 

Tonight I am taking John and a few friends to a haunted house here in our town.  I've heard it's very scary so needless to say I'll be waiting outside! 

Have a cozy weekend everyone!

XO 


Monday, October 21, 2019

An October Sunday ♥

Hello my Friends~

Welcome to another week.  They are just whizzing by aren't they?  Especially the weekends!  We were blessed with beautiful seasonal weather this past weekend so I couldn't help snapping a few pictures of the foliage.  We still aren't at peak around here but what has changed is certainly bursting with color.  The air is crisp and cool and the sun is warm and bright. A beautiful combination.

Simply delightful!   

I spent the whole day yesterday at home, pottering about the house.  Cleaning, organizing, and keeping busy.  It was a day long overdue for me.  I changed the sheets on the beds, washed the floors, cleaned the bathrooms, vacuumed, dusted, turned apples into pie, and treated myself to a homemade pumpkin hot chocolate.  There was also football watching, napping, a pumpkin bread break on the back deck, and I helped John with a school project on the Titanic, which I found quite interesting.  Overall it was a good Sunday! 
















(**husband enjoying his Sunday.....napping**) 














Don't you just love days that are productive AND relaxing?  It hardly ever happens!  

I hope you all enjoyed your Sunday and are getting off to a good start this week! 

Happy Monday Everyone! xo