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Stay Tuned....

on
Wednesday, December 31, 2014
So much to look forward to in 2015!! Can't wait

Welp... here we are at the end of this wonderful year 2014. We made it and that is a blessing in and of itself. I am so grateful for all of the things I got to live through this year. They shape who I am today and who I will be going forward into 2015. Good or bad, highs and lows, somehow I got thru and I am here, so take that 2014.


I want to take this opportunity to thank all of you for being here and following along on this roller coaster with me. Your supportive comments, emails, texts and most of all true friendships are a blessing and a bright spot in my world. I still contend that it is the good crazy up in here and I wish nothing but the best kind of crazy for all of you in the coming year. 


{New Year Wishes and Christmas Bliss} - Sugar Lump Studios - Artwork by Nancy Maxwell James



Love ya long time,

Amy's 2015 Manifesto

on
Tuesday, December 30, 2014



I decided not to do a 2014 recap post but rather a post focusing on the now instead. I generally don't spend too much time thinking about the past at this point in my life. I find it's not useful. It's too easy to get mired down in it so I just don't. There were a lot of good and beautiful things in my life in the year 2014 that I will always remember and look back on fondly. Thats enough for me to focus on right now in terms of the past. But the future... it's a blank slate and how cool is that??? We all get another minute, hour, day... year if we are lucky to do it all again and do it better. So here goes nothing.

(n.) An announcement of intended future actions. Sounds like a homosexual orgy.
Elitist went along to the manifesto hearing, but was disappointed to discover that there was no gay orgy audio clips.
by Kung-Fu Jesus May 08, 2004
I was going to include the Miriam Webster definition but the Urban Dictionary is just so much more "Me". I am not however, planing a homosexual orgy but the manifesto part yes. I just like the sound of this better than resolutions. I've been doing resolutions and breaking them for years so this year I am putting forth the manifesto of Amy 2015.

My intended future actions for 2015....

Healthy Eating - Kicking it off with the Whole 30 to reset things to right. I need to be good 80% of the time instead of 50% of the time. I am not getting any younger, I have 3 kids to live for and I just want to feel good consistently. Eating clean really works, I can't say enough about how much better I start feeling almost immediately. No shit.

Lifting & Strength Training - I will be exercising more this year but instead of focusing on the things that I think I should be doing that I hate... like running... I'm focusing only on the physical activities I like. I know I need balance but fuck balance right now. I want to get back to the stuff that changes my body the way I like it to change. That means lifting weight and strength training/HIIT type workouts. Luckily, even though I am old, my body type responds to this quite well and I see results relatively fast which is motivating. Cardio later.

Meds - I am on some and I really want to get off of them. Oddly I have not taken any anxiety meds since I lost my job. Hmmmm....

Pursue Passions - That brings me right here... My job was kind of making me miserable. I have some things in my mind that I really want to pursue. I don't know how yet but I want to do something that brings me joy or at least not misery, I don't think its ever too late to switch gears and re-invent yourself. Just look at Madonna, or something.

Financial House - I have to make honest attempts at setting this to rights also. If this means court, so be it. I will not be going to jail.

Brick and Mortar House - Stuff can be overwhelming and anxiety producing for me. I have never been so overwhelmingly open to purging. Things have so much less meaning for me than they once did. Time to let some of it go, for good.

The Blog - Want to work smarter on this and not harder. I waste a lot of time by not planning. When I plan my blogging efforts it quickly rewards me.

Tattoos - I want a few more... just because I do. I know some people don't get it but I really am in love with what I have gotten so far. I never thought this would become a thing for me but it has. I replaced cigarette money with tattoo money, always trying to scrounge it up and squirrel it away.  It's a very cool way for me to tell the story of me. So I am going to keep telling it.

Vacation - I am taking one this year. Period.

Health, Career, Money, Home, Hobbies, Travel... I think I covered all of the bases here.

I invite all of you to join me in making your very own homosexual orgy sounding thing... a manifesto.

Cheers to good shit happening in 2015!



Weekending - The Christmas Edition...

on
Monday, December 29, 2014

Dammit!!!! Christmas is over and I am a little sad. I was really enjoying taking this time to sit on my ass and do nothing but cook and chill and love up my babies. I mean lets face it, no one is hiring the week of Christmas or New Year's so although I have been regularly sending out resumes on Monster and the like the phone is not ringing. I am hopeful that as soon as the holidays are over something will pop up. Either way, perfect job or not I will be taking the first decent offer that comes along. As much as I have enjoyed this little forced vacay I am ready to get back to work!

So this is going to be all one big recap of about 5 days of holiday shenanigans in my little corner of the world. First up Christmas Eve which was our little family dinner of Prime Rib, Twice Baked Potatoes and Iceberg Wedge Salad with home made Buttermilk Blue Cheese Dressing. This year I just skipped dessert because we are always too full to eat it! The meal was fabulous and we all thoroughly enjoyed it together in the dining room, on the good china. I brought in some holly from my yard for the table and the kids even enjoyed sparkling cider out of Waterford. They love that! It looked so pretty and festive, We didn't really get dressed up or anything but who cares. We just like to make this meal a special one. I am not one for saving all of my fancy things, I pull them out and use them regularly but always on the holidays.



Christmas morning was pretty typical... the kids were reasonable as mine like to sleep. I was up at 7:30 I think and they could hardly wait to get my butt downstairs. Every one was really happy with what they received which always makes this Momma happy. I always worry that I won't have enough and someone will be disappointed but... they never are. I actually got a couple of very thoughtful gifts from my oldest daughter this year too which I loved!!! We also enjoyed  delicious Crock Pot Breakfast Casserole and Mimosas for Mom... a tradition.


My kids left on Christmas afternoon to go spend a week with their Dad so the rest of the weekend was just all about me. I cleaned out junk for Goodwill, signed up for a free month of Netflix because TV sux and binge watched OITNB. I am sure I am the last person on earth but dammit, I only want to watch what I want, not what is typically on. So far I am hooked on that. No surprise how much time I can waste on getting sucked into a good story. Any recommendations on that... bring it!!! I did some cooking and some reading... like real actual books. I am so proud of myself.

Best thing I cooked all weekend by far was this.... Bang Bang Shrimp Pasta I found on DamnDelicious.net. Wow... party in your mouth and if you like heat you will love this!!! Perfect with an icy cold craft beer! Be forewarned it's hot but in the best possible way.


I hope everyone had a fabulous holiday and is gearing up to ring in the New Year this week. I have big plans for 2015 and I can't wait to talk about it some this week here on the blog. First up though as always is getting the New Year off to fresh healthy start after overindulging a bit during the holiday season. If you are looking for a fresh start too how about a detox with me and Teami Blends? I am looking forward to shedding some elll b's, getting rid of this bloat form all of the crap I have been eating and flushing out the old pipes a little. Tired of being tired!!



I am starting my detox on Friday because FSU football on Jan. 1 is pretty much like the SuperBowl for me and I will be blowing it out one last time. If you are interested in trying out their 30 Day Detox Pack I would love some company. Go to their site and check it out and use discount code AMY10 at checkout for 10% off your total order! 

Hope everyone had a great holiday!!! On to the next.....


Linking up with the lovely B of B Loved Boston!

Merry Christmas to All!

on
Thursday, December 25, 2014


MERRY CHRISTMAS!!!




Merry Christmas Eve....

on
Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Just stopping in for a quick minute to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas. I am not sure of I wil be around over the next few days or not. We have our big dinner tonight as is the Polish custom and I am busy prepping food and cooking all day. Prime rib is on deck and I got the beast all rubbed down and prepped last night. That's 5 pounds of deliciousness right there and I am sure I will be photographing the hell out of it when its done as it will be a masterpiece!



I decided not to do much baking this year but I did make a batch of home made shortbread, another family tradition, last night. We have to have something to leave out for Santa! 


Now I need to go finish the rest of the menu. 

Peace to everyone and a very Merry Christmas. I consider it a gift to share in your lives all year long!

Winter Goals 2015

on
Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Taking a page out of Steph's book today and setting some goals for the upcoming season that I will report back on at the beginning of the next season... Spring. But let's just focus on Winter for a moment shall we.

I look at winter as a time to hole up and really focus on myself and some personal goals. My kid activities slow down by design. I don't believe in year round competitive sports unless you are in training for the olympics so my kids take the winter off to just be kids. (If your kid does do this don't get mad... just what works for me.) This allows me much needed down time with them as well as additional hours minutes in the day to focus on me.

It is also the beginning of the new year... fresh start time. Who doesn't like the opportunity to start over and do it better? I for one am grateful every year I get that chance so yes... I continue to make new resolutions and whether I kill them or fail I don't really care as much as the fact that I am still trying to improve.

The blog has kept me more honest with this kind of stuff over the last few years. I want to at least follow through enough to have something to write about for you guys. So here we go again. I want to keep this list kind of short and basic. I will be expanding on parts of it as I go along but at least I'm getting it on paper before the end of this year. So here goes....

1. Health....I want to do the Whole30. This has been on my list and of interest to me for awhile. It goes along with strict Paleo which I have done but never for 30 straight days. No cheat days, no "it's a special occasion" days. No cheating for 30 days straight to feel the effects of the "reset". I know I have a sugar addiction and I do like my alcohol and those will be really tough to give up for 30 days but I really want to do it. Need to. Anyone want to join me??? I am going to create a FB group if I get any takers. Looking at Jan. 2 as my official start date.


I am going to combine this with the 30 Day Detox I received complimentary from Teami Blends for review. I am super excited about this too as I have heard good things and I love my tea so this will be an easy thing to add in for me. If you are interested in giving this one a try I have a discount code for you. Just head over to www.teamiblends.com and enter AMY10 at checkout to recieve 10% off your order! 



2. House related things... I have 2 rooms that since my divorce have become storage/warehousing for piles of shit. When we split up a life time of stuff I just couldn't deal with it so I turned my home office  and  master sitting rooms into storage. I really thought I would have moved long ago but didn't foresee the legal issues holding me here sooooo... I want the rooms as empty as possible by spring. I don't care if it's donate, CraigsList, Ebay... I want all the shit gone. This is big but with a weekly time commitment totally doable. 

3.Do a bucket list thing.... I have one in mind but I am going to keep it to myself for now. But it involves guns and shooting things. I'll just let you chew on that....

4. Take my kids ice skating downtown in Centennial Park.

5. Work out/Move/Lift/Run/Walk/Barre or something 3 times a week... I was doing so good with this for awhile and then... I fell completely off the wagon. Summer bodies are made in the winter folks!!!

Its only 5 because I get overwhelmed easily. Lets just start with this and please feel free to join me in any of this especially setting your own winter goals. It's your life, what do you want out of it for the next few months?

Weekending.... Party Weekend...

on
Monday, December 22, 2014


Twas a good weekend. We had a neighborhood party and there was fun to be had. I have lived in the same hood for almost 14 years and OMG... we have all been thru so much together. The core group that has been here since the beginning, since the neighborhood was built... we have experienced so much of life together and life long bonds have been built. Illustrated above the process of getting a good selfie after large amounts of wine... edited because I laugh, a lot ... and ruin the pictures.

Little girl had a slumber party this weekend too. So I nursed a wicked hangover and then played super Mom to host 5 nine year olds for an over night gathering.There was pizza, crafts, cupcakes, presents and running around, shrieking, cackling like hyenas, trampling like a herd of small buffalo, a waffle bar and torturing brothers and male dogs. It was a lot of fun and I still contend that home birthday parties are not only the most economical but the most fun. I have spent hundreds on location parties but all the kids really want to do is be together, run around and play. I saved a bundle and they all had a big time!


And it almost wouldn't be a weekend if I didn't sneak out for sushi with someone. So Olivia and I did yesterday,,, a little mother daughter time with Crab Rangoons and some crunchy Tempura Rolls at out fave local spot Pacific Spice where the rolls are all currently 50% off Sun. thru Thurs. BOOM


Today......

I must wrap gifts. I am determined not to be up until 2;00 in the morning on Christmas Eve. Can def enlist the oldest girl child to help, she loves wrapping!!! Lucky me!

Shopping list and plans for Christmas Eve Dinner... Prime Rib... our tradition of glorious gluttony.

More job hunting even though I feel the next two weeks will be fruitless.

Goodwill run... gotta get those receipts in for this tax year... PURGE!!!!!


What does you Monday before Christmas look like?

Have a great one!

Linking up with Biana and Meghan for a lil weekending with the girls....

Friday Favorites - Christmas Things

on
Friday, December 19, 2014
Oh hey... it's Friday and Christmas is next week.... say whaaaaat??? How did this happen??? My last couple of Christmases were kind of weird and odd in that we were making new traditions and it felt well... new and weird. But we seemed to have settled in and it truly has become new normal. This is the first year I can say I am thoroughly enjoying the season. I even sent out cards which I have not done in 2 years. It  is weird  this good happy Christmas feeling, given my current situation but still... it's so nice. Any way lets's get to a few favorites!!! Linking up with some of my favorite pretties in Blogland ... 
Amanda, Karli and Amy

Cookies 

By far one of my favorite Christmas things... all the cookies. 


Kids

They get so excited and it's contagious. My daughter and her BFF wore matching pajamas to school today for Polar Express Day. 


Casseroles

I am a comfort food junkie and casseroles are a staple in the cold-ish winter months. Made one of my faves this week just like my Mom used to make. Tuna Casserole in puff pastry shells. Yum. My kids love this one.


Creepy Santa Memes

Come on, don't pretend you've never encountered a "Santa" with a lil bit of a creepster vibe.


Creative Gingerbread Houses

This one an homage to my home town Detroit. Nailed it.


Cheers Lovers! Have a great weekend and don't get too eggnog drunk:)


            

Best Songs of 2014 - Link Up

on
Thursday, December 18, 2014
The Best Songs Of 2014

Joining the beautiful  Helene today for a favorite topic... music. So perfect for me right now cause being unfortunately unemployed I get to listen to my music all day long. I am a music person. I prefer it almost always over TV. I used to have the TV on all the time for background noise... bad habit. Now, I can't stand it. My  Bose is on or I am streaming Pandora from my computer all day long. The songs I am currently digging on seem to become the soundtrack for my life at the time. Does that happen to everyone? Cause I think about my life having a soundtrack at the end.  When I hear a particular song later I often think about what was going on in my life at the time I had a particular tune on repeat. It's a cool thing... the memories our brains associate with pieces of music.

In music as in life I am all over the place. So my list may not be what anyone else thinks are the best of 2014 but just the best parts of my own personal soundtrack, the highs and lows and in betweens.... in no particular order. Enjoy.

I am a huge Walking Dead fan and I have discovered some great music through the soundtracks of the seasons of the show. This one from 2014....

Up The Wolves by The Mountain Goats

Up the wolves by The Mountain Goats on Grooveshark

Best concert I saw this year and the effects during this song... unreal!!!

Day For The Dead by Zac Brown Band


I discovered her this year... love her sound and vibe.

The Worst by Jhene Aiko


Possibly my new fave band of 2014, saw them in concert too. Future Southern Rock legends right here...

Good One Comin On by Blackberry Smoke


I know I'm late to the party but I needed to brood a lot this year. She works.

Young and Beautiful by Lana Del Rey


Another indie rocker from TWD sound track...

Oats In The Water by Ben Howard

Oats In the Water by Ben Howard on Grooveshark

Cause, well... this has become my mantra for certain people in my life....

I Don't Fuck With You by Big Sean


Who didn't fall in love with this guy this year? Give the acoustic version a listen and think about the one you love:) Ur welcome.

Latch (acoustic) by Sam Smith

Latch (acoustic) by Sam Smith on Grooveshark

Another fave concert of the year. IDGAF what the haters say, I love this man, his music and his butt.

Roller Coaster by Luke Bryan


And this must be on every one's list. Right?? I predict it will go down in history as one of the greatest party anthems ever.

Turn Down For What by Lil' Jon & DJ Snake


Cheers!

I'm Baaack..... from the Bullshit

on
Tuesday, December 16, 2014


New, improved and better than ever. Well maybe not actually all of that but new anyway, as in NEW Computer and I am so super psyched!!! As I eluded to the other day my laptop took a dirt nap last Friday and although my ex attempted to fix it (because the kids use it too)... alas it was not quite the same. It was pretty much like the inbred cousin twice removed of my previous laptop. That means a window licker laptop. El stupido. No bueno. 

Fast forward to today when a bright beautiful shiny new computer arrived on my doorstep courtesy of my Mom and Dad who are the best parents on the planet Earth. Seriously though let me give you some perspective. I have never had my own laptop... not that this is in any way tragic. I have always shared one with someone in my house... husband, kids, etc. So this is a real gift for me and one that I wholeheartedly apprecitate. I don't have to tell any of you how pretty much impossible it is to function in life, let alone the blogosphere without a computer. Oh and that little thing called job hunting. I was going to bite the bullet and buy one but my sweet Mom said "let us... you have enough on your shoulders" and I cried. I cried people!!! It's so beautiful and shiny... Merlot brushed aluminum or Garnet for all of you Nole fans and haters a like. Or Merlot for my wine drinking ladies:) It may take me a minute to learn how to use all of the stuff it came with but... what else have I got going on!?!?! 

Sooooo... I missed this little place. I didn't get to my weekend recap this week so I am going to take a minute and dump some pictures on you today. I will resume regularly scheduled programming as soon as I pull my thoughts together. Like tomorrow if all goes according to plan...

Last Sunday I spent all day doing kitchen things because I had food that was on it's last legs that needed to be cooked up. And let's face it, it's December and we are in full on Holiday party season... healthy eating and drinking is going to be hard to stick to without planning for the rest of the year. So first up was Pepperoni Pizza Cauliflower Casserole. I found this awhile back on I Breathe... I'm Hungry blog and finally got around to making it. It is ahhh-mazing... kind of like cheesy mashed potatoes with a pizza twist. I used turkey pepperoni but I did everything else as per the recipe which you can find here. My only complaint is I would have doubled it because I guess my cauliflower was on the small side because it just didn't make much at all. But... it's a keeper.



And other than that I just want to throw some pics at ya... food, shopping, hanging at home and an abundance of cooking. Was a good, albeit somewhat technology free weekend...




Here is to a fabulous day!

Technical Bullshit....

on
Monday, December 15, 2014










We are experiencing major technical difficulties since last week.....  and I want to throw my POS laptop out the freaking window. Or back over it with my giant obnoxious SUV.


My computer took a dirt nap last week and someone tried to fix it for me. Now Blogger pretty much doesn't work. My posts won't format correctly and I can't upload pics. When I try it keeps closing. I have no idea how to fix it so if anyone does please let me know. I am sure when I hit publish this will be formatted incorrectly and I don't know why.


Hopefully will be back soon. Till then everybody have a great day!







Hoo-rag Review and Giveaway

on
Thursday, December 11, 2014

Hey ohhhh... are you all done with your Christmas shopping??? I am not, in fact I have just a few tiny things purchased and the rest is coming from Amazon. I am the worst and I hate shopping but I love useful things that are super cool and multi-purpose. Enter one of my faves... the Hoo-rag


It's a face mask, a neck warmer, a pony tail rag, a balaclava rag, an alice rag, a head band rag,  and a pirate rag. In case you have no idea what I just said watch this...


I have 2 and I have been wearing them for a number of different purposes. I bought my skull daddy for Halloween which worked out great cause it was butt cold here and drizzling but my face was warm. 


I also love these for watching my kids sports activities in the cold, tennis, walking, running... around my face, neck or as a head band/ear warmer. I am kind of picky about sun exposure on my face/ears/neck and Hoo-rags have a 30 UPF rating which is basically very good sunscreen. I am stoked about having mine next summer too because they are moisture wicking and I sweat like a pig. I am thinking this will be a great option for sweat dripping down my face during summer tennis and windy days on the boat when your hair is flying everywhere. 

I ordered one for each of my kids for Christmas stocking stuffers and as a bonus they threw in the
Ho Ho Hoo for free.... how cute is that!


I cannot say enough about these things, they are super cool and if you have active men in your life they will love them too! Perfect for motor cycle riding, fishing, hunting, skiing, biking... you name it you can rock the rag while doing it!

My lovely Hooligans were nice enough to give me one for free to share with one of your beautiful faces. So get on it and enter below!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway



*** I received a free Hoo-rag and additional product for a give away in exchange for writing a review on this blog.***

Wino Wednesday - Drinking Accessories I Love and Hate

on
Wednesday, December 10, 2014
Kids and Cabernet

 So this link up with Kids and Cabernet is supposed to be on the first Wednesday of the month but... I missed it and I drink wine every week sooo... let's go!

I drink way more wine than I should. It's true. If you follow me on IG you see me posting the same pics of my wine in various places around my house all the time. I don't really drink anything fancy and I do have a few faves that I'll get to next time. But first lets talk drinking accessories because as all good wine drinkers know its all about the stuff to go with your wine!

LOVE
I own this and it is the best. I have broken every wine bottle opener on the market except for this one by Sharper Image. It works like a charm and all you do is push the button. No batteries requires, you plug it in and charge it up!


HATE

I'm sorry. I have hosted a bazillion parties in my day and I appreciate a bottle of wine as a hostess gift tremendously. What am I supposed to do with the precious sweater and hat  for the other 11 months of the year? It's just ugly and stupid. Wrap my wine in something useful, like cheese and crackers.

(stop looking for something to click on, it ain't happening)


LOVE/HATE

I am always broke so I quite like the idea of sneaking alcohol into any venue in my bag so in that respect I love this. On the other hand it sort of screams old lady going to play cards. This particular one is pretty chic I think. 


source

LOVE

I know, what am I going to do with these from Restoration Hardware the rest of the year? I don't know but it's faux fur and it's just so fluffy!!!


source

HATE

Ugh.....Wtf is this??? If anyone ever gives me wine in an ugly tacky shoe holder you are dead to me. But I'll keep the wine. I hate these things. Blech....


HATE

Red Solo Cup people please just stop. It's so over.
LOVE

If I am drinking wine I want some little snacks to go with but I am not a juggler. This. Is. Genius. Forget parties, I will be using this every night for my evening walk to the sofa or the deck. Now I don't have to juggle wine, snacks and my phone. BOOM
5 Cool Wine Accessories


LOVE

If you drink wine you simply must own a set of Riedel stem ware. They are my absolute favorite because they are thin, light and the different shapes are just so elegant. Each style is specifically designed to enhance the taste of the wine it is suited for by the size of the glass and the shape of the opening. It's some sort of witch craft I tell ya. Just buy some. They have a deal going right now too ... 15% off if you enter the code HOLIDAY at check out. Oh and they make beautiful beer glasses too that are next on my list for my new craft beer obsession. 


So those are a few of my favorite wino things. Do you have any to share with me??