Family, Foodie Pen Pal, Randomness

My travel bag

Today we are leaving for our big vacation. We are traveling to Charlottesville, Va for the night. Then we are traveling to Charleston, SC for the week. Then we are on to Atlanta, GA for 2 days and Huntsville, AL for a day before heading home.

I’m notorious for packing way too much food when we travel. I attempted not to have too much. We have the family snacks and then mine.

I’m going to talk about what I packed in my travel bag.


Snacks for me and Hubby (kids won’t touch them):
Trail mix (2 types)
Pistachio, cashew, and almond snack mix

Snacks for only me:
Wheat thins (small bags spicy buffalo and sundried tomato and basil)
Snack mix (walking taco flavored)
Homemade granola (breakfasts for the trip)
2 containers of individual creamers (for beach house – only thing I put in coffee)
Dentyne Ice gum (lots – love it)
2 go picnic – salami with cheese (lunches for this week)
2 go picnics – hummus (lunches for this week)
Freeze dried pineapple
Freeze dried mango
2 containers of random bars and peanut butter/almond butter packets – even though I don’t particularly like peanut butter)
Instant coffee
Fruit punch (1)

Other stuff:
Books (6)
Folders with puzzles and coloring pages for boys
Folder with puzzles for me
Mechanical pencils
My purse
My camera

Imaginative one, Pictures, Randomness, Wee one

Strawberry Picking


Yesterday the Imaginative One and I went to the zoo to check out the new dinosaur island exhibit.  On the way there, I saw a sign about strawberry picking so I asked him if he wanted to stop and pick some fresh strawberries.  Since he loves strawberries, he told me yes!!!!  So I followed the signs and found the farm.  

The owner showed the Imaginative One how to look for ripe strawberries by sight.  Strawberries stop ripening once they are picked.  He also told him to check the ripeness by tasting it.  So we tried a few freshly picked.  YUM!!!

We filled the basket to the top and even a few more so that it overflowed.  It was an experience that we will not forget.

The Wee One was not with us but enjoyed the fruits of our labor.  I had to tell him to stop eating the strawberries because I was afraid he would get a tummy ache.  

At one point, he was running through the house holding a huge strawberry singing “I like big strawberries, I cannot lie.”


Imaginative one, Randomness

Letter to Moore, OK

The Imaginative One has decided to write a letter to those affected by the May 20th tornado.  He was saddened but also proud of the people of Moore, OK.  Here is his letter:

Dear people of Moore, OK:

I heard about the tornado.  I am sorry about the people who were hurt or killed.  I heard some sad stories but also some stories of real heroes.  Like a teacher who was found under a car with 3 kids under her.  Also one about a lady who telling about her experience of how her dog who was swept away from her during the tornado.  Suddenly they heard a sound and discovered the dog was just hidden under the debris and came out when he heard her voice.  

I am sure some of the missing people will be found but before they are found let’s hope they are okay.  God be with them is my plea.  

If I could, I would go down there to help search for the missing people and give some of my clothes, toys, books, and other things to the kids who have lost so much.  

My prayers are with the people who live there.

The Imaginative One – May 21, 2013

Food, Hubby, Randomness

My new favorite foodie place

Last month as I was getting ready to shop for my foodie pen pal, I decided to visit the Second Street Market.  I had driven by it many times but it was closed so I couldn’t stop.  The boys and I went and got lunch before heading to another place.  The Greek salad I got at one of the vendors was so good.  It was the best Greek dressing I’ve had.

I tried to get back there but my Saturdays were busy so it was not feasible.  Note:  It’s only open Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays.  It’s closes at 3 on all 3 days and I drive by it at 4 so I cannot stop.  

Last Saturday, I made the trek down to the market before heading to my digital photography class.  Foods I discovered on that day were a granola called “Triple Threat.”  It has cranberries, white chocolate, and walnuts.  Not too sweet, great as a snack.  I also discovered Rahn’s Artisan breads.  Their bagels are delicious.  Spice Rack and Bulk Foods has unusual tea combos.  There is not a lot of variety but that’s okay because I’ll eventually try them all.  I got Fruit Sangria, Coconut Truffle, and a Hazelnut Toffee teas.  My tea infuser from Charleston Tea Plantation has been put to work.  

So this week, I decided I was going to go once again to the Second Street Market and buy some local goodies for my foodie pen pal.  (I’m not going to disclose what I bought for her.)  The boys had gone north east to see their cousins so Hubby and I had free time.  We went out to see Gatsby on Friday night and went to the market on Saturday.  Two dates in two days – virtually unheard of in these parts of the woods.  We almost went on a third date to Sam’s Club but that would have been too much.  One of the dates was to celebrate our anniversary.  The other was to celebrate my birthday.  

He was pleasantly surprised with the variety and smells of the place.  It was super busy but that’s a good thing.  Vendors were selling their wares.  We watched a man making a bowl on his pottery wheel.  We heard a bluegrass band singing while little kids were dancing.  We taste tested different infused olive oils and balsamic vinegar.  Then we got our lunch.  It was so busy that finding a table was virtually impossible.  Luckily for us, as he got his fried egg sandwich a table opened up.  I got my Mediterranean veggie sandwich and Greek salad.  It was a great date!

Next week, we are hitting the World A Fair to taste test foods from all over the world.  We love going there.  I’ve already have a list of foods I want to eat there so I’m excited!

Have a magical day,

Hubby, Pictures, Randomness

14 years ago today . . .

Let me take you back further than 14 years ago because that’s where this story begins.  It was September of ’97 and the fall quarter at the college I attended.  I was running late to one of my classes because I was doing my teaching practicum at a school that was 45 minutes away from my college.  I didn’t have a car so I was riding public transportation to and from the practicum.

I walked into the the teaching reading class and there was no seats.  Hubby was there and practically pushed one of his friends out of their seat.  Unfortunately for hubby, the professor found me a seat next to her.

A few days later, I had a art class and guess who was in my class.  Yes, hubby!  A few weeks later, the professor of the art class had a sick family member so 3 classes were canceled.  We went over to my dorm room and just talked.

In October of ’97, we began dating.  Our first date was at the Spaghetti Warehouse in downtown Dayton.

In January of ’99, I began student teaching.  During the time I was student teaching, we had a big snow/ ice storm that caused school to be cancelled for multiple days.  I ended up visiting at his parents’ house for a week so that I was not in the stuck in the dorms.

I also ended up with either a stomach virus or flu.  On the day I was sick, he went with his sister to find me an engagement ring.

Since school was cancelled was closed for multiple days, my student teaching was extended for about 3 days.  My last day of student teaching was St. Patty’s Day.

The next day, I had class and all I wanted to do was sleep and rest afterwards because I was exhausted.  Hubby was insistent we go out.  Since it was a rainy/ dreary day, we didn’t get to go where he wanted to – Glen Helen Nature Reserve in Yellow Springs.  Instead we went looking for apartments.  He was ready to move out of his parents’ house and I was getting ready to graduate from college in a few months.  The first place we visited ended up being nice so he got on knee by the stairs in the apartment and asked me if I wanted the apartment and him.  We were engaged!

That weekend we went to Pittsburgh to visit my grandma, aunt, and cousin.  It was the first time I had been back there in almost 14 years.  It was a nice way to celebrate out engagement.

Our plan was to live with each other for a year, plan the big wedding, and then get married.  My grandpa put a stop to that plan.  He basically told us that he didn’t want us living in sin even though we had made a commitment to each other.  We decided to follow my grandpa’s wishes of us getting married.  We picked a date that was on a Saturday for the following year and then began marriage counseling.  We were going to elope a month and a half after we were engaged.

We ran into a snagfu while planning the elopement because we needed witnesses.  We decided to ask hubby’s dad and my grandpa.  If we asked them, then the rest of the family was going to be there at the wedding.  We ended up having 12 people at our elopement.   Eleven were family members.  One was a family friend.

It was a Thursday morning at around 11 am if I’m remembering right.  I only had classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays so I took the day off.  It was also World Day of Prayer.  Our current pastor married us and then we went out to eat at First Watch.  That night we went to see Shakespeare in Love.

14 years ago, today we were married.  Two days later, I turned 24.  A month later I graduated from college.  A year later, we had our big wedding and honeymoon at Walt Disney World.  A few months after our big wedding, I began working at my current job.  When I decided to marry my sweetheart, it began a snowball effect of life changes.  I cannot believe it’s been 14 years!

Enjoy pics from our bigger wedding a year later

bubbles distorycake ilsewalk2 ringexchange

Imaginative one, Random, Randomness, Wee one

What I’m Thankful For – Last 10

11.  Hubby – He’s been such a brave soul trying the new foods I’ve been cooking.  A lot of them, he’s actually liked 🙂  Yeah!

12.  My favorite book series – Leslie Meier’s Lucy Stone series, Joanna Fluke’s Hannah Swenson series – I love visiting my “friends” and catching up with them.

13.  Spring is almost here!  It’s a time of rebirth and renewal.  

14.  My family – They are very important to me.

15.  Foodie Pen Pals – I’ve done it in October, November, January, and February.  I love shopping for a new person and trying to figure out their likes and dislikes.  Then I get my package in the mail and I get to try new foods from different places in the US.  Okay my last one was from five minutes from the house.  This month the person who is sending me my box is from further away so that’s exciting.

16.  Going to the beach this summer – I love Charleston, SC.  We finally made a commitment to go to the beach.  Yeah!  I get to eat at my favorite restaurant there.  The boys are going to get to go to Piggly Wiggly.  They want to dump sand on grandpa down there.  We are going to Charlottesville, VA either on the way down or the way back.  

17.  the zoo – I love going there.  

18.  Coffee – Enough said there!

19.  Chocolate

20.  Being a teacher – There is nothing more fulfilling as teaching especially when the students have learned something new and are excited about it.

Imaginative one, Random, Randomness, Wee one

What I’m Thankful For – First 10

One of my challenges for Healthy Self is to make a list of 20 things you are thankful for.  It was suppose to be done on Monday.  Monday was such a crazy day for me so I didn’t get it done.  Yesterday I was just LAZY plus because of the changes in the atmosphere – AKA snow coming in – my head was bothering me.

So today I’m going to make my list:

1.  Snow day – I’m suppose to be testing today so this does stress me out some.  However I got almost half done on Monday because I knew this was a possibility.  Go me because these tests are L-O-N-G and one on one with the student.  

2.  The Imaginative One – He always gives me a run for my money with his random knowledge.  He loves to learn but doesn’t like to test (discussion in car the other day).  

3.  The Wee One – He had a music program on Monday night.  If he had a chance, he could have directed that program.  He was on top of the whole production.  There is a special needs student who visits his classroom.  He is so gentle and caring with the little boy.  During the production, he allowed the boy to play with his tie because he knew that the little boy needed that.  He also loves to learn.

4.  Losing 15.5 pounds in 2 months – On Monday, a retired teacher subbed in my room so I could test.  She hadn’t seen me since either September or October.  One of the first things out of her mouth was “You lost weight.”  Made me feel good that someone noticed my effort.  I’m down 2 pants sizes!!!!!  

5.  Learning to eat new foods – I never in a million years would have thought I would have loved eating shepherd’s pie made with sweet potato/cauliflower mash on the top.  I was absolutely delicious!  I also never thought I would make double chocolate chip muffins with avocados.  Actually I would never have thought I would eat avocados.

6.  Cuddles with the dog when he’s not sensitive to weather (shakes and won’t leave me alone)

7.  Cuddles with the Wee One 

8.  The Imaginative One showing affection or appreciation towards me – These moments are fleeting but appreciated.

 9.  Being able to cook healthy foods for my family – I constantly tell the boys how lucky they are their mom cooks them dinner.

10.  Photography – I love looking at nature in a different way when I’m taking photographs.  Nature is cool!  I also love taking pictures of the boys growing up.  I have a few pictures of my childhood.  I really wish I had more.  My memories are visual in nature and I really wish I had the picture to go with my memories so I could share them with the boys.  

Food, Randomness

Sunday prep

This week I have parent teacher conferences so I’ll be working late days. I made sure Hubby has food to feed both boys on Monday and Wednesday. I also need to make sure I have plenty of healthy snacks.


Ranch flavored veggie chips in individual bags


Carrot sticks


Italian Sloppy Joes


Asian Chicken Burgers



Ham and cheese scones

20130224-214751.jpgAlmond Protein Pancakes

20130224-214819.jpgCelery Sticks


Sunday Food Prep

Sunday Prep 2So today I took time out and did some prep for the week.  Tomorrow I’ll be cooking a roast for burrito bowls.  The soup is for lunches and I ate it for dinner on Sunday night.  The Parmesan chicken is for one of our dinners.  I’m going to eat mine with the roasted veggies.  The breakfast apple crisp is my breakfast for 3 mornings.  I’m going to eat it with Greek yogurt.  The bbq pork is first going to be a dinner and then will be pork fajitas.  Yum!