Tuesday, January 25, 2011

The One Where I Cook Chicken and Dumplings

1 Yellow Onion
1 T Olive Oil.5-1 Pound Chicken Tenders (cubed)
1 C Chicken Broth1/2 C Milk2 C Mixed Vegetables, Frozen
1 Can Health Valley Cream of Chicken Soup*
1 Can Health Valley Cream of Mushroom Soup*
.5 C Flour
1 Tbsp Poultry Seasoning
1 Tbsp Paprika
1 Tsp Garlic Salt
2-3 Sprigs Fresh Thyme
1-2 Bay Leaves
1 Can 8 Count Grands Biscuits (or make biscuit recipe listed in notes)
In a large stock pot heat olive oil and add diced onion, sweat the onion and add chicken, cook until almost done; then add the next 6 ingredients, bring to a boil and then let simmer while you prepare the biscuits.
In a bowl or plate (I prefer a plate) mix together the flour and seasonings. Coat the biscuits in the flour mixture. Bring the soup back up to boiling. Pinch off dumpling sized portions and drop them into the soup. Be careful for "overboil" during this process, add as many dumplings as desired, turn the heat down to prevent overboil and allow the dumplings to cook for the recommended time on the package/recipe. (Grands 13 minutes/Recipe 10-13 minutes)
For thicker stock 1-2 Tbsp of the flour seasoning mixture to make a Roux and add to the soup.
Serve and Enjoy!

Monday, January 24, 2011

The One Where I Run The Hot Chocolate Race

I picked My #1 Donut up around 7AM and then headed out for our Addison Adventure. It was cold and rainy and hard to see and I got lost a couple of times but we MADE it there!!

Found the race site and then found our Spark Peeps!! Jerome, Amy, Nancy, Andrea, Lynette, Michelene,Susie, Donut, Laurie (?), a few others who's name escapes me at the moment.

We dropped all our stuff off with Susie AKA Donut and found our place at the start. I was gonna run with Lynette.....well for as long as I could!

Around the 1/2 mile mark my right shoe came untied and I had to stop, I lost Lynette from there but kept going. The first few miles with her though I was running a 9mm!! And it didn't feel too fast or like I was gonna pass out! But after I stopped to tie my shoe I was a bit slower. Down to my normal 11mm pace. I made it over the first hill and was feeling good! No pain no need to adjust. I felt good!! YAY!

I got down the hill at a bit of a quicker pace and could hear the cheers of the lady who was there with her own police detail! She'd already made it to the turn around!

I made it to the turn around in about 18-19 minutes and I was feeling good! Then the that darned hill was in my face again! I told myself "Commit to the hill!" And I would count off 10-20 seconds and then look up to see how far I had to go! LOL Just how much more commitment would this take!

After that is was GRAVY! Cuz the turn to the home stretch was next! I did experience a bit of chaffing. I forgot to wear a t-shirt instead of sleeveless, but other than that, I felt great!

I'm sore, but not in pain. YAY!!!!

I finished by the RunKeeper 35.17 by the official time 35.50. Because Susie Donut, let me race with her bib, all the stats are under her name. Hmmmmmm....just looked up the stats. There aren't any for the bib number. Odd.

In my age group I would have finished 30th out of 65! WOOT!! But under her age group I was 38/75!! COOL!

Lynette/Susie found me at the finish and we waited for the others! :D We met back up inside, got out hot chocolate and ate yummy donuts that Susie made for our fabulous Spark Team!!

We hung out. We took Pictures. We had a great time!! Can't wait for next month!!

The One Where I Make a 2011 Race Plan

Jan 15th - Hot Chocolate 5K DONE!! 35:17 Not a PR, but the same time as 11.2010
Feb 5th - DRC 5K
March 27th - Rock -n- Roll HM - maybe...BIG Maybe...I'm thinking about the relay though
or April 2 - DRC 5 Mile Run
June 4th - DRC Bloomin 4 Mile
July 2nd - DRC Independence 10K
August 6th - DRC Cross Country Relay
September 3rd - DRC 5 Mile Breakfast Bash
October 1st - DRC The Loop 15K
November 5th - Husky Run Run
December 4th - White Rock Half Marathon 13.1

Starting off with Spark Your Way to a 10K Training. My goal is to get to a sub-11 pace this year. I'm not trying to set any land speed records! LOL

The One Where I Tell You To Get Off The Hook!

There were a few mentions yesterday about some sparkers who feel at times they can't take the trash out, how it builds up and makes it hard for them to move around.

I've had that experience. I know how that feels. So much piled up, so much junk, garbage, and clutter. I didn't have the Cleavers for parents. I've been overwhelmed by the piles and the crud.

I read a book about health and nutrition. And while I don't agree completely with the authors "style" of health and nutrition, I was able to "eat the meat and spit out the bones" per se.

There is an exercise he mentions about forgiveness. Hold on!! I know what you're thinking.....breath in and out for a moment. Forgiveness isn't about letting someone off the hook. It isn't about lack of accountability or responsibility. Its about hook availability!

When we fail to forgive we are on the hook. We are holding on for dear life. We hold onto yesterday, three days ago, 5 years ago, 13 years ago, 35 years ago. If we're holding onto the hook then surely we're holding then responsible. Right? That would be the logic in that.

Let me tell you something, the hook means you're being eaten for dinner, friends! The only person who is being eaten (alive) is you! The other person is carrying on with their life having no thought about what they have done. (trust me on this one.....i could write a book of stories)

Holding onto the past is like drinking poison in hopes that it will kill your enemy! It doesn't kill them.....it only kills you. With poor health, depression, emotional eating......just fill in the blank. My blank was drinking and generally a destructive life. Who was I hurting? Not the offenders, that's for sure!

ANYWAY! Back to the hook. When you get off the hook, you allow for hook availability. Whether you see it materialize in your lifetime or not, the hook is available now for others. You stop being dinner. You stop being in a tug of war with the hook. You stop being in the holding pattern.

This Forgiveness Exercise was very helpful for me in leaving the past where it belongs.

****NOTE**** If you are offended by "religion" by the terms like prayer or God, etc. I encourage you to stop reading now.

Forgiveness Exercise
From Walk Thru The Bible Ministries

Step 1: Take a sheet of paper and write down the name of the person you need to forgive at the top. (one person per paper)

Step 2: Write down the things that person did to cause you pain. I can tell you from experience that once you start remembering those things, your emotions will start to rise to the surface, but that’s okay. That’s just a sign you haven’t forgiven them yet.

Step 3: Once your list is complete, you need to look at each person’s name and say “I forgive you for…..,” and say out loud what they did to hurt you.

Step 4: Then ask God to cleanse you of your past unforgiveness, bitterness and/or resentment. By the time you’ve reached this step, you’ll be heading down the road to recovery. After you’ve completed your list, you should cut up the paper or burn it.

Its not a cure-all. Its just a resource that has helped me thru alot of junk. I had junk my friends. Now I'm down to a managable pile of clutter, but its getting smaller. Occassionally I have to go thru this exercise again, I generally burn mine. Its more ceremonial to me. I watch the paper burn, mourn the loss of that event, that relationship, that crutch I was using to hold me back. And I move on.

On another "religious" type of note: CS Lewis said something incredible well he said alot of incredible things, but this one stuck with me a long time ago.

Anything that's not dead in your life can't be raised up!

Have a super Tuesday!! :D

The One Where I Ask Have You Lost Your Trash Can (or Mind)?

I've thought alot about this subject, I've thought alot about what to title such an blogging adventure. So while I sit here with my knee propped up, with an ice pack atop it. Lets begin.

Odd title I'll admit, but where is your trash can and where was it before? Is your kitchen trash can under the sink? near the stove? Have you ever moved your trash can to a new location? Mine for instance it at the end of the island. Occassionaly I move it next to the sink depending on what I'm preparing. If I'm peeling alot of veggies, I'll move it near the sink. Or when I've been handling chicken.

Sometimes I forget and leave the trash can by the sink, then head to the end of the island and remember, oh yeah! I moved it. I don't discard the trash on the floor where the can used to be. I dispose of it in the proper place. It would certainly get messy if I did that wouldn't it? Instead of making a new habit of discarding trash in the can near the sink, if I discarded the trash onto the floor where the can used to be located?

But we're people, right, capable of learning new habits. right? So what is all this talk of trash cans and their location?

Its simple really. You can remember that you've moved the location of the trash can and dispose of trash properly. Even when you (or I) forget, you head back into the correct direction, right?

Its the same with a healthy lifestyle. You've moved the location of your today and your future. So what if occassionally you forget. Just turn back toward the new location.

I've seen so many Spark Friends become discouraged lately. Forgetting their location. I've seen so many say they don't know how to get back. But I say to that if you can remember the new location of a trash can, you can remember how to Spark!

I have to remember to count out chips and not eat out of the bag.

I have to remember to look up nutritional information before I order my food.

I have to remember when I drink enough water, I feel alot better.

I have to remember to start with the serving size. If I'm still hungry make another sensible choice.

One piece of (or even the whole bag) __________ isn't the end of my journey.

I have to remember the scale is not a reflection of who I am, but a snapshot of a location on the journey.

SparkFriends, I ask you today......where is your trash can?

...And George Lasso's The Moon

If you haven't seen It's A Wonderful Life, I encourage you to. I saw it repeatedly while at the hospital giving birth to my oldest son, back in the days of no cable! He was born over Christmas. When I say over Christmas; I mean a days worth of labor

PBS was the only station that was on 24 hours because they played that movie back to back from Christmas Eve to Midnight Christmas Day. I've seen the move. And even so, I really like it.

It's a great story. One where it reminds us of how many lives we touch. How we've changed them and they've changed us. How different the world would be if it weren't for the people we've bumped into or rubbed shoulders with throughout our life.

One of my favorite parts is where George and Mary are walking home after the dance, singing "Buffalo Gals." He's telling her about his goals to leave the dust behind him from this old town and travel the world; she's admiring an old abandoned house that she romanticizes over, throws a rock at what's left of the windows and makes a wish.

He says, in the tune of Buffalo Gals "What'd you wish for when you threw that rock?"

She doesn't say.

He says: What is it you want, Mary? What do you want? You want the moon? Just say the word and I'll throw a lasso around it and pull it down. Hey. That's a pretty good idea. I'll give you the moon, Mary.

She says: I'll take it. Then what?

He says: Well, then you can swallow it, and it'll all dissolve, see... and the moonbeams would shoot out of your fingers and your toes and the ends of your hair... am I talking too much?

Am I talking too much? Hmmmmm.....

People talk too much don't they. Say too much. Say the wrong things. Hurtful things more times than good things. At least that's how it's been a lot of my life. I didn't grow up in the Bailey household. George and Mary weren't my parents. I think I would have liked that though. It seems as though they stuck together, worked things out, had a great community, had a good support system, had a guardian angel.

I didn't have those things, those people. A lot of my life I've experienced what I term "the wagging of tongues." Bad words, lack of encouragement. The message I received was, I'm too weak, I'm not good enough, I'm not......enough. This isn't for me, that isn't for me, I can't do this. Not only from my parents but from others. I began to be conditioned to think negatively about myself and about others. I began to be fearful about everything. Scared to try, Scared to fail. Scared to succeed, really.

After talking with a few of my friends over the past few days...weeks. It seems there's alot of tongue wagging going on. Maybe a lot of fear. Living in the fear bubble. Making what is said real; ingesting it and living as though the words are true about you and/or your circumstance.

It's like you've lasso'd the moon (words) and swallowed it....and it's all dissolve, see... and the moonbeams (words) would shoot out of your fingers and your toes and the ends of your hair...

I did that. I swallowed the words and I made them real. And I lived out my life, my living and breathing and parenting and working and fellowshipping as though the words were real.

A sweet friend asked me recently, have you always been this confident. I said no, not by a long shot.

I don't know when I made the switch; when I stopped swallowing the words. I know it was a process of cancelling the negative with the positive. In showing myself that I'm not those words, others thoughts or actions, I became more positive each day, more confident in myself. I had to "raise my deserve level".

You aren't others words, thoughts or actions either. You can make the choice today to stop swallowing the words. Even if you're plate is full, you don't have to eat it. Even if you take a bite, you can spit it out. Even if you ingest half the plate, guess what, you don't have to finish it!

Even if George Lasso's The Moon, you don't have to swallow it!

Who's Driving Your Wagon?

Repost from Spark:

I met Coach Nancy at the bridge today, we had a great time, walking and talking. We talked more than we walked. It was a four mile walk, a four hour talk.

Having someone like minded gave me an opportunity to bounce alot of my thoughts off her and honestly I think we both have hours of blog material now! LOL And this is one of them....but I got to thinking about this particular part of our conversation and I hope it translates as well into blog as it did in person.

I hear the term or phrase: I fell off the wagon. I'm getting on the wagon. While I understand what the phrase means and that it applies to other aspects of life issues, I'm will only be discussing it today in terms of Spark People.

To get there I want to sing a little song, some of you may know it and some of you may not. It's kind of a strange song to make the point but I hope it will make sense.

Time Warp - Rocky Horror Picture Show

It's just a jump to the left
And then a step to the right
Put your hands on your hips
And bend your knees in time
But its the pelvic thrust, that really drives you insane
Let's do the Time Warp Again!

I equate the Time Warp to being "on or off the wagon". And if it's a wagon, and you're ON the wagon, who's driving it? You? And if not you then who? Are the horses out of control? Hmmmmm....that's a foder for an whole other blog....back to this one.

If getting on the wagon is a jump to the left
And getting off the wagon is a step to your right
And while your off the wagon you put your hands on your hips (or calories) and bend your knees (only exercise when I feeeeeeeeeel like it)
I think the pelvic thrust that drives you insane is binge eating and guilt.

Are you really moving? Isn't it just a series of "a jump to the left and a step to the right"? How are you moving forward with all the side stepping?

And again I ask you WHO is driving the wagon?

At some point in this Spark Journey, you have to decide to take the reigns, you have to do the work, you have to stop trying to fill the hole, the void, the abyss, the loneliness, the "someday syndrome", the I'll be happy when thoughts, with food, with bad food or good for you food, alcohol, whatever, you fill in your own blank (destructive behavior).

Until you stop being content (and who are we kidding, you're not content) with riding in the wagon, getting off and getting on and getting off and getting on...

Until you become the DRIVER (taking control of your life) and not the PASSENGER (blame anything else for "perceived failure") you will not be successful. I said it. You're right! This won't work.

Until you take the reigns, Until you make the choices: water and fuel, Until you use the Spark Tools, Until you get off the couch and put on the shoes. You're not moving forward. You're not the driver of the wagon.

Are you ready to grab the reigns?

Don't just think you are.
KNOW you are.
Don't just TRY.

Food and Running and Other Stuff

I need to dust this place off! I need to post some race reports and get to the heart of the matter around here again!

I started this blog over the summer and somehow not it's winter!

I've trained, I've run, I've turned vegetarian and now looking into a gluten free lifestyle as well.
I've maintained my weight loss over a year!! But I'm looking to drop 10 more pounds.

I have quilt projects and recipes and pictures and spark blogs I should transfer as well! :D

Now, where's my swiffer!?