Thursday, December 31, 2009

I Beat It!

On Sunday evening I started feeling some tickling in my sinuses. I have been on Claritin for a while, so I didn't think it was allergies. On Monday morning it was much more of a tickle so I started pumping up on Emergen-C. I also went to Walgreens and purchased a Neti-Pot. I've heard they do wonders to your sinuses, so I was anxious to try it out. I tried it out and it wasn't as weird as I thought it would be. By the afternoon a sinus infection was coming on strong and I kept up my fight! I used the Neti-Pot twice on Monday, but a friend mentioned that it usually takes 3-4 times before it makes a difference. I picked up more Emergen-C and some Coricidin when I went to the store on Monday evening.

I woke up feeling really puny on Tuesday morning so I tried the Neti-Pot, some Coricidin, an Emergen-C pack in water, and then I took an early morning nap. I woke up feeling so much better. Then I spent about 45 mins chopping veggies for some soup. WOW~ that soup was the perfect medicine! It is a recipe that I got from someone at church and it is sooo YUMMY! I'll post it below. I did the Neti-Pot again and was feeling pretty good by the evening. I slept well and woke up yesterday feeling like I beat it! YEA!! I felt better and better as the day went on and I never had to take any more Coricidin.

So I'd like to give a big 2 thumbs up to these two wonderful products.

I just love my new Neti-Pot and I plan on continuing to use it each day. The box that I purchased came with 50 sinus rinse packets. When I use these up I will purchase more of this NeilMed brand. If you are a person that has allergies or any sinus issues I recommend that you try out a Neti-Pot.

I've been using Emergen-C for a while now. Usually just when I am starting to feel ill or when I fly (and I don't get sick!) I love how it works for me!! I've used both the Tangerine and Orange flavors. They are both a light flavor and taste better with cold rather than hot water.

The 3 key to fighting my sinus infection was the Creamy Veggie Soup that I made. It is not thick at all. The creamy name just comes from putting half and half in it. I added carrots to the recipe and it is SOOOOO yummy! I used red potatoes instead of white and I didn't have all the spices, so I substituted some garlic powder and some mixed seasoning of some sort.Creamy Veggie Soup

1 lrg onion, chopped
1/4 cup butter
3 sweet potatoes. peeled and diced
3 zuchini, diced
1 bunch broccoli, chopped
4 celery ribs, sliced
2 cartons chicken broth (32 oz each)
2 white potatoes, peeled and diced
1 tsp celery seed
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
2 cups half and half

Saute onions and celery in butter until transparent but not browned. Add all other veggies, saute for 5 minutes. Add all other ingredients and cook over stove until everything is tender. Can also cook in a slow cooker for 4 hours.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Thumbs Up - Thumbs Down

As a blogger I am approached from time to time to review an item and even offer that item as a giveaway on my blog. I will try the item out and give it my honest opinion. Well, I also want to talk about products and services that I haven't been asked to review. Sometimes there is something out there I really love or I really hate that I want to tell people about. I think my blog is a great place for it! There will be no schedule for when I do this...I'll just post whenever I feel like it. I can either give something a thumbs up, a thumbs down, or if I really like it a double thumbs up!

I am going to start out by giving out a BIG FAT thumbs down to Palmolive Eco Plus Automatic Dishwasher Detergent.
I decided to buy this detergent due to is eco claim and price. Growing up my mom used Palmolive, so it's a name I trusted. This stuff just plain SUCKS and it's nearly ruined my newer dishwasher. The soap doesn't dissolve like it should and it leaves a grainy grit on my dishes. I thought that there was an issue with my dishwasher itself, but we checked it out and it's this crappy soap. It's left a gunky build up on the heating element and clogged the rinse basket. We had to take the parts inside out and clean all the build up off of them. I googled this soap and I saw that it has an average of a 1 star rating at Epinions and several others have complained about this soap. I am glad I figured this out before my dishwasher stopped working all together. I am a frugal person and would normally freecycle something I don't care for, but this is so bad that I wouldn't wish it on anyone! In fact, Palmolive is no longer a trusted name in my house!!! I will be sharing my sentiments with Colgate-Palmolive after I publish this post. I encourage you to also!!

Monday, December 28, 2009

Holiday Recipes & Crafts

Here are some goodies that we made this year. The first is a cracker toffee. The recipe I got from my friend was called Saline Chocolate Pieces, but I don't like that name! I'll call it Chocolate Cracker Toffee.
Chocolate Cracker Toffee

1 sleeve saltine crackers
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 cup butter (2 sticks or can use margarine)
12 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips
3/4 cups chopped nuts (I used pecans)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a jelly roll pan (cookie sheet with little lip around the edge) with cooking spray. Arrange crackers to cover the bottom of the sheet. I had to break a few in half to fit along the edge. My daughter arranged the crackers while I boiled the brown sugar and butter for 3 minutes. Then pour over the saltines and put in oven for 5 minutes. Remove and sprinkle choc chips on top. After 2 mins or so spread the melted chips evenly across the top. Sprinkle the nuts and press them in lightly. I used the back of a spoon. I put it in the fridge to harden and then I broke it apart into uneven pieces. It's the perfect combo of salt and sweet and you will want to eat it all!!

On Christmas Eve my daughter and I made this great ornament that we saw in Family Fun magazine. (I love that mag and got a subscription off eBay for $2!)It was made with a nail file as the trunk of the tree, craft sticks as the branches, glue, green paint, and sequins. Fun, easy, and cute!

The final thing was a recipe that we got out of Family Fun magazine. It's supposed to look like a fruity Christmas tree, but it didn't quite look how I wanted it to. But it was sure YUMMY! Make sure to get star fruit for the middle. Pineapple was used for the base. We used the extra for fruit salad!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Snow

We had a very relaxing Christmas at our house. Of course we overate, so we decided it was time for everyone to get some exercise. Here we are out walking in the snow yesterday.Today we went out to shovel and then took the kids to the park. I love this pic of DD being pulled in a sled tied around DH's waist with the dog pulling him.The dog loves the snow too!

Winter has arrived!

Christmas is over and the snow has finally arrived to us, so it was time for a new look for this blog. Do you like the cute penguins??

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday weekend. It was very mellow around here. Too much relaxing, so we kicked it into high gear yesterday and got out for some exercise. The falling snow is just beautiful! We are heading out to shovel and play in the snow now. Pics later?

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Survivor

I forgot to do a reality wrap after Survivor the other night. I thought they were going to break up 3 against 3 but the former Foa Foa stood strong.

Right now we are over an hour into tonight's episode, but we got home 45 mins late...we are as far as Jaison getting voted out. Russell is slick! They totally had the chance to get him voted out. Why didn't they ditch him? The jury just might reward him for his GREAT game playing? Who knows? Brett has it if he wins immunity! We just skipped forward over that hokey part where they pay respect to the kicked off players. That part is annoying! LOL!

New Feature ~ Goodfind

Recently I've gotten into going to Goodwill. I love finding a good bargain so I am starting a new feature called Goodfind. I am going to post about any good finds that I come across at Goodwill.
Right this very moment I am sipping chai tea out of my big-a$$ mug that I got at GW for 96 cents. I know that's really not that special...but I am sure enjoying this tea right now!!
I am looking like I need something much
stronger than chai tea! Just woke up from a nap!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Finally NOT Busy!

It was a very busy fall for me. I was in charge of a huge fundraiser and the kids had all kinds of activities. There seemed to be something going on every weekend and things have finally slowed down. I do expect things to not be as hectic for the next several months.

The kids are on winter break from school. We have no special plans at all. Teen gets braces on Tuesday, but that is really the only thing going on in the next 2 weeks. I am looking forward to catching up with lots of things around the house and online.

I am spending some time at MBC and checking out blogs on the Follow Me Club. Welcome to my new followers!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Reality Wrap: Week ?

I have been a total slacker on my weekly reality wrap. In fact 2 shows ended since my last wrap.

The Biggest Loser~ All I can say is WOW! The contestants looked amazing! (Although Rebecca looks like she's trying to be a hooker!) I was floored by Crazy Tracey. She really seems to have pulled it together. I thought for sure that Rudy had it won when he got weighed, but Danny blew past him. Danny looked worried at first. I am guessing the contestants aren't allowed to weigh themselves to they get all the drama/excitement that goes with each weigh in. While Rudy & the others might not have won the money, they certainly won health and a longer life!!

The Amazing Race~ That final episode was short and not very exciting. I cannot believe how many commercials there were. They could have made a Las Vegas leg WAY more interesting. And the Alpha couple that dominated the game winning...zzzzzzzzzzzz!! I've read somewhere that Brian/Erika got ripped off. The dealer that was counting their chips made a mistake and mixed one chip into another pile which had them off by a few hundred. I guess the dealer was mortified by their mistake and Brian/Erika might have won if she didn't make the mistake. Who knows? The 16th season is being run right now and the spoilers are already out there. I don't read the spoilers at all but I heard there are several mactors competing. I think one is the old guy from Big Bro and that ditzy beauty pageant contestant who couldn't answer some basic geography question. (not the same team) Should be interesting!!

DH~ I just watched the Christmas episode last night. I have no idea when it aired, but I think that is the last new episode we will see for several weeks. I've found the last several eps to be VERY boring, but this ep was GREAT! It really built things up and then left them as a HUGE cliffhanger. So who died? I am guessing Mona and Karl. Orson was so easy going and agreeable with Bree when she asked for the divorce that you just knew something was up. It doesn't make sense for Orson to die because then Bree can just go on with her life. But Orson surviving, his ego coming into play, and him being able to hold things over Bree seems to make sense. Lynette saved Celia's life, so she is going to be a hero to Gabby now. I just hope the excitement of this episode spills over into the new year.

Survivor~ OK...Russell keeps dominating and I am loving it. It's funny how someone so repulsive can grow on you. LOL! I love how they pagonged all the other team off. And now it's just Shambo (who that team didn't like at all) and Brent left. Or is it Brett? I am not sure. It seems like they just snuck him into the show a few weeks ago. He was so invisible before. He's not getting the edit, so I don't think he wins. Based on the edit...Russell is the winner. The preview for tonight make it look like the remaining 6 divide up into 2 groups of 3~ Russell, Shambo, and Jaison and then McDreamy, Natalie, and invisible boy Brett. My money (all 5 cents of it) is on Russhamson. LOL! What do you think? I'll have to do another little wrap up before Sunday's finale!

Friday, December 11, 2009

Party Time!!

I am busy today getting ready for our annual holiday bash! We normally have about 50 people, but I think the turn out will be lighter this year. Great food & fun times!!

Monday, December 7, 2009

I ♥ Faces - Week 48 Sweet Dreams

I haven't participated in I ♥ Faces in a long time. I was visiting someone's blog just now and saw their entry which made me think of this sweet photo of my newly adopted daughter sleeping. This was taken 3 years ago.

MSM: Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes

I've always wondered how you made those cupcakes that are in an ice cream cone. I thought they were made in the microwave. I was mixing up the batter for my daughter's cake yesterday and I noticed a little ad on the box that said for directions to make these ice cream cone cupcakes visit bettycrocker.com. So I went there and found these simple directions. They turned out quite well and I iced them with pink frosting and then added a Diego face to each. My daughter LOVED them!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Happy Birthday Dori

Today was my daughter's birthday. It was a low key celebration, but she was very excited and had a great day.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Holiday Look

Do you like my holiday look? It matches our family Christmas card that I designed. I only had the previous design for a few weeks...but I didn't really care for it. I was in a funky mood when I made it.

I am *WAY* behind on my posts. I was really on a roll there for a while and then Thanksgiving hit. I wasn't online much and now I am busy with holiday preparations and whatnot. I know I didn't do my reality wrap this week, but I also missed Survivor. We had the DVR set to record, but it didn't. We will have to catch it online tomorrow. I have a very busy weekend, so I am not sure I will be able to catch up on my posting. Have a great weekend everyone!!