Ye Ol’ Bucket List (Hopefully will be edited often.)

  • Travel to as many places as possible.
  • See the Aurora Borealis.
  • Go to a dinner mystery theater.
  • Sky dive (tandem – I don’t have the courage to do it alone).
  • Go on a cruise.
  • Go to The Holy Land.
  • Go to The Smithsonian.
  • Work for myself.
  • Retire.
  • Volunteer full time.
  • See a Broadway play on Broadway.
  • Start hiking regularly.
  • Hike somewhere that takes more than one day and requires camping out.
  • Attend SXSW.
  • Learn to ride a motorcycle/trike.
  • Go on a trip on a motorcycle/trike.
  • Do a food-themed (probably Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives) road trip.
  • Go on an overseas trip with my parents.
  • Get a tattoo or two.
  • Do a police ride along.
  • Take a cab ride in NYC.
  • Sell something that I’ve made.
  • Learn to make pottery.
  • Attend a professional basketball game.
  • See the Blue Man Group.
  • Attend a Cirque du Soleil performance.
  • Get a professional makeover.
  • Go on an overnight train ride in a sleeper car.
  • Relax in a natural hot spring.
  • Flip a house.
  • Use a metal detector.
  • Anonymously make a difference in someone’s life.
  • Ride in a hot air balloon.
  • Visit the 25 states I have not visited.
  • Meet a favorite author.
  • Play BINGO.
  • Do an Escape the Room.
  • Attend the Olympics.
  • Throw a themed party.
  • Stay at a B&B.
  • Go canoeing.
  • Go jet skiing.
  • Graffiti the cars at Cadillac Ranch.
  • Go deep sea fishing with my dad.
  • Play golf.
  • Ride a Segway.
  • Ride in a Gondola in Venice.
  • Take a complete Route 66 road trip. (Have done so partially.)
  • Go on an underwater scooter ride.
  • Write a song.
  • Help someone find God.
  • Be a better person.
  • Write a book.
  • Float a river.
  • Attend a roller derby match.
  • Attend a show at a comedy club.
  • Attend a professional football game.
  • Attend a professional hockey game.
  • Attend a professional baseball game.
  • Do a 5K.
  • Organize an event.
  • Take a swamp tour.
  • Swim in the ocean.
  • Ride in a cable car through the mountains.
  • See some mountains.
  • See a desert.
  • See an ocean. (Two, actually.)
  • See a swampland.
  • See a forest.
  • Visited 25 of 50 states.
  • Get a passport.
  • See an orchestra perform.
  • See a play.
  • Hold something from space.
  • Pay someone else’s bill anonymously.
  • Organize a reunion.
  • Go on a cross-country road trip.
  • Go to the State Fair.
  • Watch live bull riding.
  • Watch live boat races.
  • Take a random road that I’ve never been on.
  • Get a professional massage.
  • Get dressed up with The Hubs for dinner.
  • Show The Hubs where I grew up.
  • Stay in a luxury resort.
  • Go to Disney.
  • Go on a roadside oddity road trip.
  • Go on a road trip with my mom.
  • Skinny dip.
  • Watch someone be born.
  • Volunteer.
  • Ride in an airplane.
  • Ride in a helicopter.
  • Drive a four-wheeler.
  • Ride in a limo.
  • Explore an underground cave.
  • Ride in a large boat.
  • Ride in a small boat.
  • See Mount Rushmore.
  • Go to a casino.
  • Go on vacation with friends.
  • Stay in a cabin on a lake.
  • Stay in a cabin in the mountains.
  • Organize a club.
  • Go to a concert.
  • Go to a drive-in movie.

I am up for suggestions on stuff I should add. ¬†ūüôā

Song of the Day

Bohemian Rhapsody by Queen.  A classic.  Freddie Mercury was a legend.  Nothing else to say.

Book of the Day

Image result for spellmans lisa lutzImage result for spellmans lisa lutzImage result for revenge of the spellmansImage result for spellmans strike again

The Izzy Spellman series by Lisa Lutz.  These are great.  The Spellmans are a dysfunctional family of private investigators, who end up investigating each other as often as they do their outside clients.  The books are funny, sarcastic, light-hearted, and very entertaining.  5 stars each on Goodreads.

Recipe of the Day

Spicy Sausage, Spinach, and Mushroom Gnocchi via http://www.tablefortwoblog.com.  So good.  Does anyone else love gnocchi as much as I do?

INGREDIENTS
  • 1 16-ounce package of potato gnocchi
  • 3/4 pound spicy pork sausage
  • 1 diced onion, about 3/4 cup
  • 8 ounces of baby portobello mushrooms, sliced
  • 10 ounces of chopped frozen spinach (thawed and excess liquid squeezed out)
  • 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Freshly grated parmesan cheese,¬†for topping
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Bring a pot of water to a boil and follow the instructions on the gnocchi package. Drain well once done.
  2. In the meantime, brown sausage in a skillet over medium high heat and break it into smaller pieces with a wooden spoon. Add the onion and mushroom to the skillet then saute until softened, about 5 minutes.
  3. Toss the drained spinach in the sausage mixture.
  4. Add the gnocchi to the skillet and gently toss to evenly distribute the ingredients. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Serve hot and top with freshly grated Parmesan cheese, if desired.

It’s All About Balance

I am 8 days behind on my exercise challenges and 9 days behind on my Bible reading challenge.¬† I haven’t gone to the gym once this year (I was going to start going three days a week at the beginning of the year now that the doctor has cleared me to do whatever).

I am doing better in other areas I am trying to work on, so 2017 isn’t a complete flop yet.¬† ūüôā¬† Tonight I did two nights of both exercise challenges trying to make up some ground.¬† That equaled out to 180 flutter kicks, 40 push ups, 1360 punches, and 3 minutes of high-knees.¬† And then I ate about 1/3 of a bag of dark chocolate covered potato chips.¬† It’s all about balance…..

Song of the Day

The Way You Move by Outkast featuring Sleepy Brown.  Because when trying to get some exercises in, you gotta have a song with a good beat to move to.

Recipe of the Day

Best Tomato Basil Soup via http://www.jennysteffens.blogspot.com.¬† My aunt posted on Facebook the other day that they have been dealing with the recent weather with soup and sandwiches.¬† That sounded marvelous to me, so The Hubs and I had this with grilled cheese tonight.¬† There’s nothing better on a drizzly, foggy, chilly night.

  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil
  • 2 – 14 oz. cans of crushed tomatoes
  • 1 – 14 oz. can of whole tomatoes
  • 2 cups of stock (chicken or vegetable)
  • 1 tsp of sea salt
  • 1 tsp of sugar
  • 1/2 tsp of fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup of heavy cream
  • 3 tablespoons of fresh basil, julienned
  • parmesan cheese
In a saucepan, sauté garlic in olive oil on medium heat for 1 minute Рbeing careful not to burn the garlic.  Add the crushed tomatoes.  Add the whole tomatoes one at a time, squeezing them into the pan to break them up.  Add the juice from the whole tomatoes, as well.  Add chicken stock, salt, pepper and sugar.  Cook the soup on medium at a simmer for 10 minutes.
To finish, reduce the heat to low and stir in heavy cream and basil.  Serve topped with parmesan cheese.

Book of the Day

Image result for the cat who braun

The Cat Who series by Lilian Jackson Braun.¬† My mom worked in a library when I was a wee lass.¬† By the time I was a teenager, I had read just about the entire children’s and young adult sections in the library.¬† I was allowed to read some adult books, with my mom meticulously screening my choices.¬† The Cat Who books were deemed appropriate, and I ate them up.¬† I have probably read the first 20 or so.¬† I remember giving a book report on The Cat Who Saw Red in fourth grade.¬† I think my teacher was a bit dismayed by my report that the red coloring on the pottery was created by the blood from the body that was disposed of in the firing kiln…..¬† Truly, they are all light-hearted mysteries.¬† I loved them.

 

 

 

Doesn’t That Sound Nice, Deary?

via Daily Prompt: Aesthetic

One can find aesthetic qualities in just about anything if you open your eyes, heart, and mind.  I often find them in landscapes, in laughter, in words.

Last night, while watching a DVR’d episode of What On Earth?, ¬†I heard a phrase of great aesthetic quality:

“Elegant Spaghettification”

It sounds much more beautiful when spoken than it is in reality. ¬†The phrase was being used to describe what would happen to the human body if it got anywhere near a neutron star, whose gravity is strong enough to bend light. ¬†In reality, the process of becoming an elegantly spaghettified ribbon of particles would be horrific. ¬†Thankfully, it would be so fast your brain wouldn’t be able to process any of it.

I’m sure that all sounds terribly morbid, but it just goes to show you that beauty can be found anywhere. ¬†Just look around you! ¬†A good deed. ¬†The smell of fresh-cut cedar. ¬†The sound of thunder. ¬†Looking in your rear view mirror and seeing a gorgeous sunset. ¬†Aesthetic pleasure is lurking around every corner just waiting to be noticed.

Song of the Day

Human by Rag ‘n’ Bone Man. ¬†I love this man’s voice. ¬†Simple. ¬†Clear. ¬†Hearty.

Book of the Day

Image result for cold sassy tree

Cold Sassy Tree by Olive Ann Burns.  This is a story of life in a small Southern town and high family drama in the early 1900s as told by 14-year-old Will Tweedy.  Loved this book.  5 stars on Goodreads.  Burns began a sequel to this book called Leaving Cold Sassy, but unfortunately she died before she completed it.

Recipe of the Day

Not Yo Mama’s Banana Pudding via http://www.pauladeen.com. ¬†Since we’re going with the simple and aesthetic theme, what is more appropriate than banana pudding? ¬†And, this is the best version I have ever tasted.

Ingredients

  • 1 (12 oz) container frozen whipped topping, thawed, or equal amount sweetened whipped cream
  • 1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 (8 oz) package cream cheese, softened
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1 (5 oz) box instant French vanilla pudding mix
  • 6 to 8 bananas, sliced
  • 2 bags chessmen cookies

Preparation

Line the bottom of a 13x9x2-inch dish with 1 bag of cookies and layer bananas on top.  In a bowl, combine the milk and pudding mix and blend well using a handheld electric mixer. Using another bowl, combine the cream cheese and condensed milk together and mix until smooth. Fold the whipped topping into the cream cheese mixture. Add the cream cheese mixture to the pudding mixture and stir until well blended. Pour the mixture over the cookies and bananas and cover with the remaining cookies. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Deserted, Yet Full of Love

It makes me sad that the most likely¬†time for a family gathering is a funeral. ¬†But, I love my family dearly, and I will take time together with them whenever and whyever I can get it. ¬†My great uncle’s funeral was held this past weekend in one of those towns in Oklahoma that is so small that you may doubt it is even a town as you pass through. ¬†There are very few businesses, the homes are tired-looking, and¬†only a ghost of the bustling place that it once was remains. ¬†But, my family has much history there, so I feel a bit of belonging every time I visit.

The church that my great uncle attended is full of the most kind and loving people.  This, sadly, was the third family funeral that I have attended at that church.  And, the ladies always make a huge meal to feed the family before hand.  (This is really quite a feat since there are so many of us.)  They always make us feel welcome.  They always shower us with love.  I have been fortunate enough to attend other gatherings at this church that are not centered around a death.  I think that only in a place so small and desolate can you find people pulling together like they do.  Folks in that area definitely are there to support one another, and it makes my heart feel warm & fuzzy.

I hope that you had an opportunity to spend time this weekend with people that make you feel at home, too.  Much love to you all.

Song of the Day

Undeniable by Mat Kearney.  I love love love this song.  I had a great moment with a friend over this song.  Back when I was a bowler, I played this on the jukebox one evening.  He ran up to me, and we sang it to each other in front of the whole league.  Ha!  Greatness.

Book of the Day

The Shack by William Paul Young.  This is the story of a little girl who is kidnapped.  Evidence of her brutal murder is found in a shack in the mountains.  Her dad feels compelled to visit the shack to see things for himself, and there he meets God.  Great story!  Heart-wrenching and heart-warming both.  5 stars on Goodreads.

Image result for the shack william young

Recipe of the Day

Baked Scotch Eggs via http://www.sweetrecipeas.com. ¬†Lovely for a hearty breakfast. ¬†It’ll make you feel your Scottish roots, Laddy.

INGREDIENTS
  • 4 hardboiled eggs
  • 13.3 ounces mild Italian ground sausage (gluten free)
  • Coconut oil or olive oil
INSTRUCTIONS
  1. Divide the sausage into 4 equal parts.
  2. Shape each portion into a flat round.
  3. Place a hard boiled egg on the sausage and wrap the sausage around and enclose the egg completely with sausage.
  4. Place on a baking sheet that has been greased with coconut or olive oil.
  5. Bake at 375F for at least 30 minutes. Mine take about 35. Your oven might differ.
  6. You can eat these warm or cold. They are a perfect high protein (23 grams per scotch egg) breakfast on the go.

Daily Prompt: Capable

via Daily Prompt: Capable

Story time, kiddies! ¬†Gather ’round.

The Hubs runs a few convenience stores here in town. ¬†Last week, The City contacted him and told him that they found two bags of trash in clear bags in a ditch beside a street a couple of blocks from one of his stores. ¬†They said that they know the bags came from his store because they examined the contents, and that if he didn’t come pick them up immediately, he would be heavily fined. ¬†The Hubs argues with The City telling them that they do not use clear bags. ¬†And back and forth they went. ¬†(The bags are actually a clearish orange.)

The Hubs drives down to where the offending bags are, takes pictures of them, calls The City and argues with them further, picks up the bags, and takes them back to his store to throw them in his dumpster.  The next day, The Hubs goes down to City Hall and more debating ensues.  The City tells The Hubs that they know the trash is his because they opened the bag, rifled through the contents, found a lottery ticket, contacted the Lotto Commission, and tracked it back to his store.  The Hubs argues that whatever happens to lottery tickets after they leave his store is not his responsibility.  Etc etc etc.  

And then yesterday, The Police Department contacts The Hubs and tells him that they found two bags of trash in orange bags in a ditch beside a street a couple of blocks from one of his stores. ¬†They said that they know the bags came from his store because they examined the contents, and that if he didn’t come pick them up immediately, he would be heavily fined. ¬†Sound familiar? ¬†The Hubs tells The Police Department that Adult Probation uses orange bags. ¬†This is common knowledge in our little town, as you often see probationers picking up trash on the side of the road and putting it into orange bags. ¬†That is irrelevant. ¬†They are convinced that for whatever reason, The Hubs or his employees are taking bags of trash and are driving them a few blocks away and tossing them into the ditch rather than walking them a few steps to the TWO dumpsters on the store premises. OR, The Police Department theorizes that the orange bags are being used as a marker or signal amongst criminals who are intending to rob The Hubs’ store in the near future. ¬†(Let me add here that the two cameras that point at The Hubs’ dumpsters were stolen from the building a day before the first trash incident.) ¬†Either way, it is The Hubs’¬†problem to deal with.

It does not take much brain power to put two and two together. ¬†An adult probationer, who is supposed to be picking up trash along the side of the highway near The Hubs’ store is instead diving¬†into The Hubs’ dumpsters, filling up his orange bags, claiming he worked however many hours, and returning to his merry little life of crime.¬†

So, The Hubs contacted Adult Probation and told them what was going on.  They actually believed him and knew immediately who was to blame.  

This whole scenario baffles me. ¬†The City workers are capable of digging through discarded bags of trash and tracing the contents through the state, but are not¬†capable of just picking up the bags and throwing them away? ¬†The City isn’t capable of figuring out that the orange bags are used by Adult Probation? ¬†And¬†The Police Department, who is tasked with keeping peace, keeping the public safe, and solving crimes isn’t¬†capable of figuring out that this is the work of a shady probationer? ¬†The Hubs, who runs c-stores for a living and who is not a private eye (though I wouldn’t mind at all if he was since I’ve been in love with the likes of Sam Spade, Richard Diamond, and Johnny Dollar since the beginning of time), was¬†capable¬†of solving this mystery. ¬†

Please don’t get me wrong. ¬†I 100% support the police. ¬†It makes me crazy to hear stories of people not cooperating with the police, ending up getting hurt or killed, and then blaming the police when it was their own criminal acts that led them to¬†where they are. ¬†But, this whole ridiculous trash debacle is a head-scratcher. ¬†I’m going to chalk all of this up to the 100-year flooding from this past spring. ¬†Our little town suffered greatly during these floods, and the city’s failure to keep the ditches free of trash and debris was blamed for¬†much of the damage. ¬†I just hope that one entity or the other apologizes to The Hubs for their hasty assumptions and maybe make him an honorary detective. ¬†

Have yourself a wonderful and trash-free weekend.

Song of the Day

Love the Way You Lie by Eminem featuring Rihanna.  I have an affinity for dirty rap songs.  Not all rap, but yes.  And I love Eminem.  I have followed his career from the beginning and think that he is a brilliant lyricist.  This one is from his Recovery album.

Book of the Day

Image result for cormoran strike

The¬†Cormoran Strike series by Robert Galbraith (aka JK Rowling). ¬†Since we’re on the subject of private eyes…. ¬†These are modern-day private eye stories. ¬†Cormoran Strike is an ex-solider who lost a leg in Afghanistan and now runs a struggling private investigator business along with an¬†obligatory beautiful female sidekick, Robin Ellacott. ¬†Rowling has already proven what a brilliant author she is. ¬†I really enjoyed all of these, though I found the second one to be quite disturbing.

Recipe of the Day

The Pie via my cousin, Jean.  Jean made this for me when I went to Kentucky to visit her a few years back, and I have been making it for others ever since.  People always ooh and aah and drool on themselves when I do.

Image may contain: fruit and food

  • 1 graham, Oreo, or chocolate pie crust
  • Nutella
  • 1 box white chocolate Jello pudding mix
  • 1 container Cool Whip
  • a variety of fresh fruits and berries

Gently fold the pudding mix into the Cool Whip. ¬†Do¬†not¬†stir or it will leach liquid. ¬†Just gently fold it in and then stick in the fridge to chill for at least an hour. ¬†While your Cool Whip chills, prepare your fruits and berries. ¬†You can use anything here. ¬†I usually use strawberries, green grapes, pineapple, kiwi, and blueberries (the variety that Jean used that first wonderful time). ¬†Wash everything. ¬†Cut the strawberries in half. ¬†Cut the pineapple into bite-sized chunks. ¬†Peel and slice the kiwi. ¬†Dredge the kiwi slices in sugar. ¬†In a small sauce pan, warm the blueberries over low heat with some sugar to glaze them and then let them cool completely. ¬†Then, slather some Nutella on the bottom of the pie crust. ¬†Do this gently, or the crust will crumble into pieces, which would be sad. ¬†Spread the Cool Whip mixture over the Nutella. ¬†Artfully arrange the fruit on top of the Cool Whip. ¬†I always arrange them in rings with the blueberries in the very center. ¬†Then, plunge your face into the pie and eat it like a pig. ¬†Go ahead. ¬†Nobody is judging you……

Can I Get a Mulligan?

Today my great uncle passed away.  I found out that a beloved friend was diagnosed with an aggressive cancer.  I found out that I may have to testify in a court case.  And, I got food poisoning.

And, I have decided that my boobs will disappear altogether within the next 10 years.  They are small, which means that the natural gravity/sagging process is going to just obliterate them completely.

And how was your day?

Song of the Day

The Scientist by Coldplay.  Because this is a sad ass video, and today was a sad ass day.

Book(s) of the Day

Image result for killing lincolnImage result for killing kennedyImage result for killing jesusImage result for killing pattonImage result for killing reagan bookImage result for killing the rising sun

The Killing series by Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard.¬† I am currently reading Killing the Rising Sun:¬† How America Vanquished WWII Japan, which is the sixth of the series.¬† I do not normally read nonfiction, so I was surprised by how much I really like these books.¬† If you have even the tiniest bit of interest in history, give these a try.¬† They are unbiased.¬† They are well researched.¬† And, they lay out factual, proven events day-by-day in most of the books.¬† All quite fascinating and educational.¬†

Recipe of the Day

Nana’s Banana Bread via a recipe card labeled Grandma’s Kitchen that I have.¬† I think I got it in the mail many many moons ago.¬† This is the best banana bread recipe I have ever tried.¬† Usually The Hubs makes it for me.¬† I like to buy bananas from the store and not eat them and then blink my eyes all pathetic-like at him when we have an excess of overly-ripe bananas on the counter so he’ll make some for me.

  • 5 Tbsp butter
  • 1/2 c sugar
  • 1/2 c brown sugar, packed
  • 1 egg
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 c mashed bananas
  • 1 3/4 c flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 c heavy cream
  • 1/3 c chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350F.¬† Spray bottom of 9x5x3″ loaf bread pan with nonstick cooking spray.¬† Beat butter in large bowl¬†with an electric mixer set at medium speed until light and fluffy.¬† Add granulated sugar¬†and brown sugar; beat well.¬†¬†Add egg, egg whites,¬†and vanilla; beat until well blended.¬† Add mashed banana¬†and beat on high speed¬†30 seconds.¬† Combine flour, baking soda, salt,¬†and baking powder in medium bowl.¬† Add flour mixture to butter mixture alternately with cream, ending with flour mixture.¬† Add walnuts to batter; mix well.¬† Pour batter evenly into prepared¬†loaf pan.¬† Bake until browned¬†and toothpick inserted near center comes out clean, about 1 hour 15 minutes.¬† Cool bread in pan on wire rack 10 minutes.¬† Remove bread from pan; cool completely on wire rack.¬†¬†Slice and¬†serve with butter¬†and jam.

Gimme Gimme Gimme

I am going to use today’s post to rant (or express my disbelief and lack of understanding)….

….about GoFundMe accounts.¬† I think that this website was set up with the best of intentions.¬† But, not everyone who sets up a GoFundMe is truly in need.¬† I have seen several of these accounts that make me shake my head in bewilderment.¬† The most recent is for a girl I know who wants the world to buy her a computer that she can use to game with her boyfriend.¬† What??¬† Usually I would think (or say…which leads to hard feelings) “get a job”!¬† But I happen to know that she works two jobs!¬† So, to this I must say “suck it up!¬† Do what the rest of the adult world has to do and save your money to buy yourself what you want.¬† And, if that should fail, tdb!¬† Go without!”

I know this¬†is a tired topic, but¬†that doesn’t make it any less mind-boggling to me.¬† When¬†did the world start owing everybody something?¬†¬†What makes any of us so special that we should expect other people to spend their hard-earned money to buy¬†us what we’re not willing to work and scrimp and save for ourselves?

26 Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? 27 Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?

28 “So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; 29 and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 30 Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?

31¬†‚ÄúTherefore do not worry, saying, ‚ÄėWhat shall we eat?‚Äô or ‚ÄėWhat shall we drink?‚Äô or ‚ÄėWhat shall we wear?‚Äô 32¬†For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. 33¬†But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. 34¬†Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.¬† Matthew 6:26-34

God promises to feed and clothe us if we are faithful.  He does not promise us electronics and vacations or any other comforts.  And even more so,

10For even while we were with you, we gave you this command: ‚ÄúIf anyone is unwilling to work, he shall not eat.‚Ä̬†2Thesalonians 3:10

Even though God promises to take care of our most basic needs, He expects us to work to take care of ourselves.¬† These two examples of verse may seem contradictory since He speaks of the birds and flowers not toiling, but the point is there.¬† (And we’re talking critters and plants vs. humans, etc.)¬† Extras in life are just that–extras.¬† We do not need anything beyond food, clothing, shelter, and love, and we are certainly not entitled to it.¬†

Posting this makes me feel judgy, and so be it.  I just want folks to stop for a moment and be grateful for what they have.  We could all be worse off.

I hope each of you find peace in your own lives.

Song of the Day

Have You Ever Seen the Rain by Creedence Clearwater Revival.¬† CCR rocks.¬† One of the all-time best.¬† Timeless music.¬† Essence of rock and roll.¬† I could go on and on….

Book of the Day

Image result for the good girl mary kubica

The Good Girl by Mary Kubica.¬† I needed a book “with a surprise ending” for this year’s reading challenge, and this one fits the category for sure.¬† It’s the story of a kidnapping told by the kidnapper, the victim’s mother, and the police officer working the case.¬† I listened to the audiobook and was not a fan of one of the narrators.¬† I probably would have given the book more than 3 stars if I had read it to myself.¬†

Recipe of the Day

Grilled Chili Lime Chicken Fajita Salad via http://www.cafedelites.com.  I like these salads, but the marinade itself is to die for.

Ingredients
Marinade/Dressing:
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 100 ml (just over ‚Öď cup) freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped cilantro
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • ¬ĺ teaspoon red chili flakes (adjust to your preference of spice)
  • ¬Ĺ teaspoon ground Cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
Salad:
  • 4 chicken thigh fillets, skin removed (no bone)
  • ¬Ĺ yellow bell pepper, deseeded and sliced
  • ¬Ĺ red bell pepper, deseeded and sliced
  • ¬Ĺ an onion, sliced
  • 5 cups Romaine lettuce leaves, washed and dried
  • 2 avocados, sliced
  • Extra cilantro leaves to garnish
  • Sour cream (optional) to serve
Instructions
  1. Whisk marinade ingredients together to combine. Pour half the marinade into a shallow dish to marinade the chicken fillets for two hours if time allows. Refrigerate the reserved untouched marinade to use as a dressing.
  2. Heat about one teaspoon of oil in a grill pan or skillet over medium-high heat and grill chicken fillets on each side until golden, crispy and cooked through. (Grill in batches to prevent excess water being released.) Once chicken is cooked, set aside and allow to rest.
  3. Wipe pan over with paper towel; drizzle with another teaspoon of oil and fry pepper and onion strips until cooked to your liking.
  4. Slice chicken into strips and prepare salad with leaves, avocado slices, peppers, onion strips and chicken. Drizzle with remaining marinade/dressing and serve with (optional) extra cilantro leaves and sour cream.