Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Thank You, Veterans and Current Service Members

First, I just want to say how grateful I am for those service members - current and prior - who give or gave of themselves for our country, so we could have freedom - whether freedom to begin with or to have continued freedom.  I cannot truly express my gratitude for their sacrifice.  I think of people like my husband, my dad, my grandfather, my brother-in-law, my father-in law, my uncle, my cousin's husband, my niece-in-law's love, and more.  Thank you - from the bottom of my heart!

What I choose to write now is sad.  Incredibly sad.

Over the last week, I have seen all kinds of sales that pop up just because people want to make the almighty buck.  Buy our stuff on Veteran's Day and get 20% off - but, oh wait - you must show proof that you are current or retired military.  What about all the restaurants - such as IHOP - who offer a free meal current or retired military?  Must show proof.  I know that without requiring proof, everyone and their dog will want a free meal.  But, really, why do these businesses only honor those that are currently serving or those that gave 30 years?  My husband's four years are just as important as the person who has been serving 5 days or the person who served 30 years.  He gave 4 years of his life to serve this country.  He lived 4 years away from his entire family to serve this country.  Since our lovely government doesn't feel it important enough to issue a "veteran" ID card that can be used for things like this, my husband and anyone else who didn't retire or isn't currently serving, gets left out of the appreciation.  I wonder if we were to take his discharge papers if these places would honor it.  I bet not because then too many people would be getting the discount...

It was admirable to see him leave for work last night with his ginormous Air Force belt buckle on, along with his military hat that he likes to wear.  But, it was disheartening to hear him tell me this morning that he wanted to go out for free Veteran's Day breakfast - but there was nowhere he could go because he wasn't current or retired military.  Really people?!?!?!  Do you know how many people are out there in the world that served our country that aren't retired or currently serving?  Far more than are currently serving or are retired!

I hope he sits down today and writes the letter to IHOP that he said he was going to.  They need to know what their patrons are feeling today...how disheartened they feel - like they've been crapped on.

Thank goodness for Golden Corral and Olive Garden though.  They either just allow you to be honest (or dishonest in a lot of people's cases, I'm sure) or to show some other proof that you were in the military.  And, you can bet that we will continue to patronize those businesses just because of that!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

A New Weight Loss Update

I don't know what happened....but I haven't been very good at updating the blog 1) with my weight loss progress, and 2) at all.

Don't have much time right now so will just say that as of today, I've lost 113.1 pounds!

Friday, July 25, 2014

Weight Loss Update

Almost to 100 pounds lost!!!  Hit 94.6 pounds lost about a week ago.  So happy!  Wish that next 5 pounds would come off faster than it is.  But, hey, I'll take what I've accomplished so far!  In fact...look what I was able to do on the plane coming home from Michigan in June...

Yep...that's right...I was finally able to put the seatbelt on without an extension!  (And...it didn't cut off my circulation either!)

Monday, May 19, 2014

Gouty Vegetarian Spaghetti Sauce

Since becoming a vegetarian, I have been sad that I can't eat my Sausage Spaghetti anymore.  I finally took the time to create a version that I really like that is completely gouty vegetarian!  The cauliflower gives it bulk like hamburger or sausage, it picks up the flavors of the seasonings, and it adds veggies to the dish.  Give it a try.  It's not exactly the same as my other spaghetti sauce, but it's close enough for me!

Kristin's Gouty Vegetarian Spaghetti Sauce

1 head cauliflower
1 medium onion, diced
1 green pepper, deseeded and diced
48 oz tomato sauce (six 8 oz cans)
Garlic salt 
Black pepper

1 tsp crushed red pepper
1 T dry fennel seed
1/2 T Italian seasoning
2 cubes vegetable bouillon
1 to 2 lbs dry or fresh spaghetti
Olive or vegetable oil

In a food processor, grate the cauliflower.  In a large pot, add a little olive oil and begin sauteeing the onion and green pepper along with the crushed red pepper and fennel seed.  Once sauteed, remove from pot temporarily.  Add a little oil again and begin browning the cauliflower as if you were browning hamburger.  Once it has good color and is tender, add the onions and peppers back in.  Add the tomato sauce and vegetable bouillon cubes; stir well.  Add garlic salt and black pepper. I have no idea how much garlic salt and black pepper - enough to where you like the flavor.  Taste and season as needed.  

In another pot, begin cooking enough spaghetti for those eating - 1 to 2 lbs - according to package directions.  I always add a little olive or vegetable oil to keep it from sticking once it's drained.  Once pasta is finished cooking, drain well and return to pot.  At the top of the sauce that is in the other pot, some of the liquid portion of the sauce will have risen to the top of the top.  Carefully ladle that portion (about 3 ladles full) into the drained pasta.  Stir/toss pasta well to coat all sides.  

Serve pasta in a large bowl with sauce separately in another, along with yummy garlic bread and green salad.  Yum!!

P.S.  I like to add a good dollop of sour cream to the center of my plate once it's dished up.  I stir it in and it makes my sauce kind of like a bolognese - creamy and all.  Yummy!

Sunday, May 18, 2014

I've Been a Bad Blogger...

I have not blogged in a very, very long time.  I have so many entries that I wish I had done.  But, life lately just has not been conducive to blogging.  I'm trying to get back on the bandwagon...but I'm not sure yet when that will be...

Friday, January 24, 2014

80 Freakin' Pounds Gone!

That is EIGHT of these!  When was the last time you went to the grocery store and picked up eight 10 pound bags of potatoes and carried them around?  Try it.  It's a lot.  So glad I have made it this far!!  Now to just keep going!  I have lost 2 shirt sizes and 6 pants sizes!!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Gorgeous Sunset

Tonight as I walked out of work to head home, I got to experience the most gorgeous sunset!  I love it when this happens...it reminds me of the gloriousness of God.  And, somehow, he always does this just when I need it!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

I am Thankful for a Great Day!

I had a great day today!

I got to go to the endocrinologist and hear her say "You're perfect!" and "You are just glowing!" and "I noticed your weight loss when I first walked in the room!"

Wow!  I felt SO good!  Probably helped too that I was wearing my newest pair of jeans that I picked up last night - another size down!  That means I am down 4 sizes now!  I wasn't going to put my sizes out there for everyone to see, but you know...that's what keeps me accountable to myself.  I have gone from a 5X shirt to a 3X and from a size 32 pants down to a 26!  I even bought a size 24 pair of pants so I have them when I need them - hopefully soon!  As I was walking out of the store, I thought, oh my gosh...1) I haven't been this size in at least 20 years and 2) it's not all that far to a size 18, which although is still bigger than I eventually want to be, I would be happy as an 18!

So...back to my doctor's visit...

I got my test results and everything was in line...except my weight, of course, but everything else - perfect!  Uric acid - 4.2!  When I had my annual health evaluation done at work in October, it was 4.8, so it's still going down!  Sodium - right at the bottom of the acceptable range!  Glucose and A1C - within normal range.  Bilirubin - one I often worry about because of my mom's history - right at the bottom of the range!  Everything else good too!  What a great visit.  She was so happy with me!  I was happy with me - and it showed on my face!  I was like a giddy school girl!

Unfortunately, Melon Man did not get such good news.  She actually talked with before me and the first thing she said when she walked through the door was "Do you have a will?"  When he said no, she said, "You need to get one."

I'm not sure how he took that.  I think jokingly at first, but she was completely serious.  His diabetes numbers were off the chart.  He has to do a better job at handling his diabetes.  I am committed to helping him as much as I can.  He has to want to do it though too.  We talked a lot about what he eats, when, and when he takes his insulin.  He is going to wear a monitor for 3 days to see what is impacting his levels and we'll go from there.  Enough said on that.

When we got home, I got back to working and had a few conference calls.  Then, the UPS man showed up with this cute package from my sister, Jennifer.  It had 4 types of popcorn including Tigers Blood flavor, pumpkin spice, white chocolate, and sugar cookie! What a thoughtful gift just to say thanks!  I loved it!
I ended up going to bed at 8 pm because I was just so tired.  I'd only had about 2.5 hours of sleep the night before because I was trying to finish up my blog BOOKS for 2012 and get them submitted before their 20% off sale ended.  Made it just in time!  Can't wait to get them!

It's amazing what compliments can do to make a girl's day.  They just made me happy all day long and getting a fun package so unexpectedly made it even better!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

I am Not Feeling Very Thankful or Grateful Today

Things have been rough lately.  Taylor has not been feeling very well and his back is in constant pain.  We don't know why...but, the signs are leading that it could possibly be cancer again.  Yeah, this stinks.  The kid is out there on a mission, spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ, doing good to others, and this happens?  What the heck?  I'm certainly not feeling very grateful or thankful today.  I guess I should be happy that he's actually gotten to serve the time he has, but seriously?  This is one of the best kids out there and now this?  How much more is he going to have to endure?

Monday, November 11, 2013

I am Thankful for Veterans

I am very thankful today for the veterans who have served our country since we became a country in 1776.  It means the world to me that someone else gave their life or time in the service for me so I could be free and have the life I have today.