Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Pot calling the kettle red

As Julia Child once quoted "Aways start out with a larger pot than what you think you need.”   Linda had to throw out her big pot because it was so old, probably used for 30 years or more.  That wouldn't be old if it was a really good pot, but it was a cheap pot to begin with.  She found one she liked yesterday, but it was $179.  I don't think Julia Child even needs a stock pot that costs almost $200.  This pretty pot was only $49.   It's super well made and the bright color will make Linda happy every time she cooks with it. 
Choopie for scale
After her morning class, she met Tierney for lunch and some shopping.  Shopping with Tierney is always a fun and an interesting experience.  Whenever they shop together, Tier always saves Linda so much money.  "Mom, you don't need that!"  Of course Tierney having 23 navy dresses in her closet is totally different. 
This was how Chimi stared at Tierney the whole time she was at our house

Monday, December 30, 2013

Big Deal

It's been a relaxing kind of day for everyone.  Linda taught a Pump and Combat early this morning,  but all her other classes were canceled.  She did chores, grocery shopping, studied, and made a big pot of vegetarian chili.  She also tried to do an outside run with Chimi, but he was too slow and it was really cold.  At least she was able to track a new one mile route in the neighborhood (loving the Garmin!) The lap routes are boring, but  she can drop Chimi off at the house and keep going if he isn't cooperating. I ran and hid when the leashes came out.  I'm a very strange pup most of the time.  I prefer to be alone.

This is so Linda with me!  I hate being cuddled but she seems to think I love it.
What a deal!
Linda picked up this great leash for Chimi today at Tuesday Morning.  It was $24.99, on sale for $11.99 and then it was 90% off.  She would have bought more, but that was the last one.  $1.19 for a brand new flexi leash? Yes please!! I'll get his old one because mine is so small that Linda can only fit two fingers in the handle and has trouble even holding it when she is wearing gloves.

Probably not a deal at all
With all the money Linda saved on the leash, she might be able to totally redo her kitchen.  She loves the white cabinets, stainless and granite/wall colors!  She just needs to add a few extra zeros to her savings and she could afford this.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

When sleeping in is 5 a.m.

Due to rain, today's run didn't happen outside like Linda was hoping.  She did make it to the gym before church.  It was touch and go for awhile.  For some reason, she woke up at 3 a.m. and felt like it was time to get up.  She tried to go back to bed and sleep some more, but woke up at 5 a.m. totally ready to start the day.  But at 7:15 a.m. when she was going to leave, she started to get tired.  (It really messes with our normal routine when she has weird sleeping habits.)  Since her gym bag was packed, she braved the pouring rain and went anyway.   Good thing too, she had her best 5k run time yet!  There was a nice marathon type guy on the treadmill next to her who gave her all sorts of good running advice and tips.  I know running bloggers post pictures of their feet on the treadmill after a workout.  That's pretty boring in my opinion so instead here is a pic of Penny loving on her Lil' Lamby earlier this year.

After a two hour nap this afternoon, Linda feels refreshed and recharged.  (Not so recharged that she feels like taking us out for a walk though.)
Napping buddy

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Tres Bien Crepes

Little French Bear from Starbucks.  Linda has every single Starbucks bear released (from our area) since 2001.
Another recipe success.  This time it is not a healthy quinoa; roasted veggies, or sauteed spinach creation.  Linda had some bananas that were turning brown, so she googled "ripe banana" recipes. As soon as she saw this one; she got a huge craving for Chocolate Chip Banana pancakes.  It's been years and years since she made pancakes.  These were amazing!  She cooked them really small (the plate is a tea cup saucer) so dinner wouldn't be 1,000 calories.  The rest of the pancakes got packaged up and frozen for future splurges.  Both Chim and I begged for a bite but chocolate is poisonous to dogs, so we didn't get any.  So sad.
Emo Chimi
Such emotional eyes
Snickers had the same coloring as Chimi.  We still miss him.

Run #1 of many

Linda did her first Garmin run today.  She still doesn't really understand all the features, but she was able to do the time/pace and calories/distance.   Wow, wearing the watch made her run so much faster because she is so competitive.    The route she chose was hilly and steep in spots, but she kept up the same pace as on the flats.  At one point she had a huge stitch in her upper right side and almost felt like she was going to get sick. (Eating white pizza and Cesar salad for lunch at The Don's right before your run probably isn't that smart.)  Tomorrow she will get up and run some more before church.

The rest of the day is going to be spent learning her new Pump/Combat routines and cleaning the house.  Maybe later this evening she'll take Chimi and see how fast they can walk a 5K.   Today she mapped out one 5K route and can't wait to do some more in our neighborhood.

Somehow I forgot to post this adorable picture of Penny in her Christmas dress.  She looks so adorable!  Sarah also sent these photos of Taylor teaching Penny to ride her new bike.  She doesn't quite have the idea of keeping her feet on the pedals yet, but she loves to be pushed and ring the ding-ding bell!
"Show me how Daddy!"
Remotes for Dummies
Linda is having all sorts of TV remote problems.  One of the remotes works 1/2 way and the other identical one from downstairs works 1/2 way.  Luckily both have different buttons broken, so together she can get the TV turned on and the channels changed.   This is what Taylor needs to do at his house when Linda goes over to watch Penny.  Turning on their TV takes 3 remotes and is the most complicated task ever.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Play Date

There is no reason for Linda to be as tired as she has been today.  Even though she took a 2 hour nap from 1-3 p.m., she is fighting to stay awake at 8:30.  She doesn't feel sick or worn-down, just the regular "I want to go to bed right now" kind of tired. 

One of Linda's Christmas presents from Penny was another calendar.  Linda loved the one from last year, this one has lots of new adorable pictures.  This year Sarah even included pictures on special dates.
Check out who has a birthday on October 11th!
Penny loves playing with her blocks that Linda gave her.  During their play date today, they built a tower so tall that Penny couldn't even reach the top.  As soon as it was finished, Penny knocked it down and said "OH NO! Fell Down!" 
Penny got a new bike for Christmas.  Linda pushed her around the house since it was too cold to go outside. You can tell by her happy face that she loves it!  Her feet don't reach the pedals yet, but she rings the bell and can steer.

"Let's just stay up a little longer please"

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

A very merry Christmas

What a Merry, Merry Christmas!  It started with Tierney spending Christmas eve with us. Yay for sleepovers!!

In the morning they went over to Sarah & Taylor's for brunch and to open presents.   Sarah made a Praline French Toast casserole that was about 1,000 calories a serving.  There was also fruit so that made the meal healthy, right? 
It tasted as good as it looked.

The cream cheese and brown sugar dip was really yummy

Everyone loved their presents.
Taylor got Sarah an amazing pair of vintage Opal earrings
Linda got a Garmin to help her run fast (and not get lost)
Tierney loved her Longchamp tote bag. 
Taylor helping Penny open her Mickey coloring book
These would last about 3 minutes in our house.  Chimi would chew them to pieces.
ABC blocks from Nana
Penny's soon to be baby brother even got some presents
Just chilling with Mickey and Minnie
Don't think Linda forgot us.  Chimi and I got some presents too!
In the first 5 minutes Chimi chewed the stuffing out of one toy and the ears off the other.  Don't you love how they put a skunk tail on the fox head?  That's what you get when you shop at the Dollar Store. 

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Early Naps and Nautical Coats

Linda broke the record today for taking the earliest nap ever.  I woke her up O'dark30 because I had to go outside.  She can never fall back asleep once she is out of bed, so she just stayed up.  Everything was going fine until about 8:00 a.m. when she kind of crashed.  Since she didn't have to teach until 10:00, she had time to take a quick 30 minute nap.  It worked wonders.  All the people in her class said she was super hyper and energetic teaching.  Yay for naps!
Linda bought herself a Christmas present.  It's always something she needs (like running shoes, a vacuum or blender) but his year she saw this coat online and fell in love with it.  The original price was $210, but it was on sale for $80 and free shipping.  It even came in tall sizes. The coat is really beautiful and very nicely made.  The only problem is its too big and the sleeves are too long. Before she returns it, she is going to take it to a tailor to see if the sleeves can be shortened and both rows of buttons can be moved over and centered.  

Tierney is coming over our house tonight for a Christmas eve sleepover.  Linda got her old room (her really old room, not the one she slept in when she was a teenager) ready.  Back in the day, Tierney and Taylor wanted to move their upstairs bedrooms to the two downstairs bedrooms.  Tierney decorated her room in 101 Dalmatians and Taylor chose Space Jam.  After one freezing winter down there, they decided it was much warmer upstairs and moved back to their original rooms.  Linda has the portable heater warming the bedroom now, so she should be fine. 

All the Christmas cookies are on pretty trays and wrapped up.  There were enough left to make two more packages, but she only bought 4 trays.  The $Dollar$ store is only a 20 minute jog away and she is thinking about taking her run to the store and back.  Pretty soon she has to start getting ready for the Christmas eve Praise and Worship celebration at her friend Laura's church, so she'll really have to run fast if she decides to go. 
The middle tray in the back isn't wrapped as pretty since they are just going to Sarah's and Taylor's for Christmas snacks after present opening. 

Monday, December 23, 2013

It's a BOY!

Linda had to wait until Sarah and Taylor announced the news, but now all my readers can know...
"I'm going to be an amazing Big Sister!"

So Sweet


"I'm smiling with my eyes Nana"
It is getting harder and harder to get Penelope interested in having her photo taken.  When she was little, it was easier to get her in a candid natural face and she loved the iPhone camera.  Now she likes to "pose" doing a fake smile, silly face or she just looks at you like you are annoying.
Look at those chubby little hands!

Last night was the Christmas pageant/skit at church.  Linda was on the stage holding one of the babies, so she doesn't have any pictures of the festivities.  She did get to see Penny while she was performing her songs. The 1-2 year old kids were dressed up as gingerbread men.  The 3-4 year old were little cooks and bakers.  They were all so adorable.  The infants were even dressed up as polar bears and candy canes!

Penny wouldn't wear the gingerbread hat that went with the outfit

 So far, Linda has had a fun day.  Her morning Pump and Combat class were both really crowded today since so many people were off work.  On the way home from the gym, she stopped at the grocery store to get food for Christmas brunch.  There was a big sale on over-ripe bananas, so she bought a bunch to make banana bread.  Since the kitchen was already messy from baking the bread, she decided to make cookies.. and more cookies... and more cookies.  Three hours later, this is the results:
Three loaves of chocolate chip banana bread; Reeses' peanut butter cup cookies; chocolate Rolo stuffed cookies; Ghirardelli (sp?) white chocolate chunk oatmeal cookies and coconut chocolate crinkle cookies.  These aren't even all of them, there were more baking in the oven when she took the photo.  She'll be making up little gift boxes for her friends and family tomorrow.  (Of course she kept out some of each kind for her own personal cookie jar!)

This is Linda... except for the recipe part.  She is always making Pintrest recipes!

After all that baking and cookie tasting Linda took Chimi out for a run.  He did great today and kept up with her.  The last mile he even ran pretty fast.  When he got home though he was licking and whining at one of his paws, so he might have either stepped on something or his nail is hurting him. 
As soon as Linda sat on the chair, he snuggled up with her and seemed much better. 

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Beer and Brussles Sprouts

Linda is making Honey Apple Beer Bread for Christmas presents.  (If you read this blog and get a loaf, please be surprised) .  When she first opened the beer to add it to the dough, it reminded her of the bottom of her sticky Keds sneakers from high school.  In other words, not very appetizing.  Beer just stinks.  Now that it is baking, it smells just amazing!  Someone should make a candle that smells like this bread.  She's not sure how it is going to taste, but if the aroma is any indication, it is going to be amazing!  I hope she doesn't eat them up before she actually gives them away.

While she was at the store tonight shopping for the ingredients, she saw this stalk of Brussels Sprouts.  How did she live this many years not knowing you could by them in a stalk?  It made her do a little happy dance right in the grocery store!!  

 Sarah got a new phone today after her old one took a tumble down a flight of stairs and smashed.  The new phone takes amazing photos.  Of course it helps when your subject is so adorable.  P.S.  Sarah actually painted this chair and reupholstered it all by herself.

P.S.S.  The bread is really, really good.  Linda figured she had to taste it before she gave it away just in case it was terrible. Chimi got a small crumb that fell to the floor and he gobbled it down then begged for more!  Looks like she'll be baking another one tomorrow since she still has more beer left. 

All I Want For Christmas

Just a few more days until Christmas.  Linda has all her shopping done and is going to put everything into gift bags tonight.  This is the first year she didn't buy any gifts for us.  Since she has to go to the store in a little bit to buy food for the church Christmas party, she might just get us each a new toy.  Something in the $4-5 range.  Anything more expensive is a waste of money since Chimi will probably destroy both toys before Christmas night is even over. 

These were a few of my favorite toys.. after Chimi found my hiding spot
Linda is kind of being a cheapskate.  A recent survey found out that 75% of pet owners buy their furry pals gifts.  Half of those spend $50 a pet and 15% will spend $75 per gift!  What?  That is just craziness.  Some pets get gift certificates for paw massages, aromatherapy and Dead Sea mud baths.  Can you imagine someone trying to give Chimi a mud bath?  Ha!!  If spa treatments are not high on your pets wish list, you could spend $200 to take them to a pet psychic.  The psychic shows pictures to the dog and can translate what the dog is thinking.  That's super easy, why pay $200 a session.  If Linda shows us the box of cookies, she knows exactly what we are thinking... "We want a cookie."  

I could really use a deep fur conditioning treatment though

Wind Sprints

What an amazing day!  It feels like spring instead of the first day of winter.  Yay!  Even though Jerry took Chim and I for a walk while Linda taught until 1:30; she still took Chimi out for a run when she got home.  It's been a long time since hes done anything other than walk on the leash, so it was a huge learning curve again.  Linda almost face planted twice on the sidewalk because he stopped in his tracks and flattened out when leaves blew across the sidewalk.  After 10 minutes, she looped around and bought him back home since he was so spastic.  Linda is still new to running, and is trying out different things.  Today she sprinted as hard as she could from mailbox to mailbox.  In between sprints she ran slow, but never walked.  Plus, our neighborhood is hilly and it was really windy.  Sprinting uphill into the wind is WAY different than running on a treadmill.  She still did a total of 36 minutes.  Since she doesn't have a pedometer anymore, she isn't sure how many miles it was, but was the hardest she has ever run!

If the weather is still nice early tomorrow morning, she is going to run outside instead of going to the gym.  There is a high school track down the street, so she might actually do her run there so she can do some more speed work and know the milage.  Her butt and legs are going to be pretty sore, but what doesn't kill you makes you stronger, right?

Thursday, December 19, 2013


 Linda finally got her hair cut.   Her hair had gotten so long it was about touching her waist.  Sure, if she blew it dry and used a curling iron it looked pretty... but most days it was in a ponytail.  You know your hair is too long when your ponytail gets stuck in your armpit when you are teaching Body Combat and when the bar from Body Pump yanks clumps of it out lifting the bar off your back.  Here is the best part about the haircut.. it was free!  Sarah cut it for her when Linda went over to visit today.  
It's hard to tell from the photo, but it has a lot of nice layers....
and is angled in the front!
Penny was perfect during the whole process and watched a Mickey Mouse show until they were done.  Penny is talking so much now.  She is very vocal about what she wants (and doesn't want!) Wow, she is growing up soooo fast.  

It's been awhile since Linda posted a food picture.  This was today's lunch.  Spinach and kale salad with grapes, strawberries, raisins, seeds, croutons, nuts and her favorite soy-chicken strips.  Don't you really want to come to our house for lunch tomorrow?