Why we should all consider taking a midlife gap year — ideas.ted.com

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When Caroline Harper suddenly found herself jobless in her mid-40s, she decided to step off the corporate ladder and travel to all the places she’d always wanted to go, from Antarctica to Egypt. Here’s how it changed her life — and her career. Caroline Harper loved her work negotiating big contracts in the oil and…

via Why we should all consider taking a midlife gap year — ideas.ted.com

I read this article and definitely agree with it.  Maybe if you can’t take a gap year you could at least do something different on your next vacation which would allow you to think about what you would want to do in the future.  As I have been known to say, I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up 😉

If money was no object, what job would you like to have in the future?

Later – Heather

Focus – Word for 2019

I want to wish everyone a Happy New Year.

I have decided to make some changes to the blog, but I am still mentally working out the details so it will be spelled out in a future post.

Do you select a Word of the Year?  Last year I picked ‘Be’ as my word.   ‘Be’ fit what I needed, whether I knew it or not on January 1st, 2018.

This year I decided on Focus since I want to focus on:

  • my family
  • my health
  • on projects
    • Hopefully I will finish some projects so my active ‘partly done’ list is smaller at the end of 2019 than now.  This doesn’t mean I won’t add new ideas to the list, but I have to get some of the partly finished projects sitting around here done and provide some free space – physically and mentally.
  • etc – I know other things will come up that will need my Focus for at least a short period of time.

One thing I am trying this year is to fill out a planner again.  I have tried to use a bought planner in previous years and have failed.  Then I tried a Bullet Journal for a while, but gave up since I was constantly having to rewrite tasks from week to week since they were not getting done.

So, this year I created a three month planner (to start) of my own design.  It is a combination of a regular planner and a Bullet Journal.  I will let you know at the end of March what worked and what I will be changing for the next three months.

Until next time, Heather

 

Jordan Page YouTube Blogger

Do you watch or listen to YouTube.com?  Did you realize there are bloggers who post on YouTube?

I have found that I can listen to the YouTube bloggers through my smartphone and get things done around the house at the same time – hey, it at least makes the time go by faster when I am doing the dishes, etc.

So, here is the first (I think, since I have been planning on posting these for a long time, but don’t think I ever wrote one up) of the YouTube.com bloggers that I listen to weekly.

Oh, and no, these are not sponsored and if you say you found them through me they would have no idea who I was, but I would love it if you did tell them 🙂

If you see Jordan Page’s face you might recognize her from the Rachel Ray Show or other television shows.  I had never checked out her blog or YouTube channel until another YouTube blogger mentioned her earlier this year.

Jordan Page – https://www.youtube.com/user/funcheaporfree or search Jordan Page

or go to her blog:  http://funcheaporfree.com/

So, in September Jordan did a challenge called #Shelftember Challenge.  The premise was to eat the items you already have in the your refrigerator, freezer and pantry before going to the store and shopping for groceries.  You were give a small amount to buy fresh vegetables, milk, etc each week.

Since we were going on vacation in mid-September (yes, we had fun and I will post about it in the future) I thought this was a good idea for us to implement.

Well, other than a few shopping trips where we picked up bargains, something special,  something we needed to make a dish that went along with what we were eating from our refrigerator, freezer or pantry or to replace something we were running low on we have been eating mostly this way since September.

Oh, and I will say that we still go out to eat randomly, but I consider those ‘Dates’ and the cost falls into another bucket in our budget.  Hey, we need to have some fun in life and at least once a week I don’t want to cook 😉

I can’t tell you exact amounts, but our food bill was definitely lower in October versus August.  The other bonus is we are starting to see some blank space in our freezer, etc so I will be able to buy the turkey that is on sale this week and have room for it in the freezer until Thanksgiving.

I will always be happy to have a stockpile of food for in case of emergencies (earthquakes, snow, floods, power outages, etc can all happen here), but it was getting a little crazy that each week we saw multiple things for sale in the ads and had to go buy them instead of having multiple days a week that we ate the food that we already had.

So, after doing this for a couple of months the husband appears to be on board.  From now on I will plan my menu for the week and then look at the local sale ads.  If there is something we are craving, a super bargain (think baking supplies that go on sale before Christmas, etc) or something that we are running low on then I will buy those items, but I will always be looking to get the items on sale or with a coupon, if at all possible

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How do you keep your food bill under control?

Later – Heather

 

 

 

Tip Tuesday

So, I made some gluten-free sourdough starter with sorghum flour that I had in the house from the following recipe and we thought it was too sour.

https://successfullyglutenfree.blogspot.com/2013/12/easy-gluten-free-sourdough-starter.html

And, then I realized I didn’t have any brown rice flour in the house, but I realized that I had brown rice in the pantry so I ground some of the brown rice with a older coffee grinder (which hadn’t been used for coffee) similar to this one and made my own brown rice flour!

https://www.target.com/p/mr-coffee-174-blade-grinder-black-ids57-np/-/A-16391441?ref=tgt_adv_XS000000&AFID=google_pla_df&fndsrc=tgtao&CPNG=PLA_Appliances%2BShopping&adgroup=SC_Appliances_Food+Dehydrators&LID=700000001170770pgs&network=g&device=c&location=9030852&gclsrc=aw.ds&ds_rl=1246978&ds_rl=1247068&ds_rl=1246978&ref=tgt_adv_XS000000&AFID=google_pla_df&CPNG=PLA_Appliances+Shopping&adgroup=SC_Appliances_Food%20Dehydrators&LID=700000001170770pgs&network=g&device=c&location=9030852&gclid=CjwKCAjw6-_eBRBXEiwA-5zHadkXcFHD7V0BYp0KC6q7QsO17p_9CJ-gNlpOm-ZmRcdib-k4wi3E9xoCxD4QAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

At the moment the brown rice flour and water are sitting on the counter.  Later this week / next week I will report back how the sourdough bread turned out.

What creative cooking tips have you done lately?

Later – Heather

 

Hallelujah Toffee – It is available!

The online store is open at http://hallelujahtoffee.org/  for Hallelujah Toffee.  If you are in Northern Nevada it is also available at a few craft fairs which are listed on the website.

I am so glad that I got to volunteer with Hallelujah Toffee again this year.  We made over 4,000 lbs of toffee in less than three weeks!  This year I was able to help by cooking and packing toffee into bags.

A friend asked and it is all made by hand with love by volunteers in single pan batches.  It definitely doesn’t taste like normal store bought toffee.

So if you want to buy some great, handmade toffee and support a great cause then please buy a box.

My only warning is it is addicting and we are selling out earlier and earlier each year even though we make over 4,000 pounds.

100% of our profits go directly to 40 well-deserving students from the slums of Kenya, each with their own personal story of difficult circumstances and even stronger resolve. Affectionately referred to as our “Candy Kids,” these secondary students are now receiving a full year of education, room and board, mentoring, an emergency medical fund, and summer camp experiences during their holiday months.

http://hallelujahtoffee.org/

What organizations do you volunteer with?

Later – Heather

Red, white and blue quilt

For a very long time we have had a store bought quilt on our bed and I wanted to make a new one, but I wasn’t sure what colors or design to make it.

In 2016, at the summer picnic meeting of the local Quilt Guild, I won a stack of 2.5″ strips of patriotic material.  When I brought them home I wasn’t sure what I was going to do with them since I don’t really care of the look of Jelly Roll quilts.  Then I realized most of them were similar to the colors of our current bed quilt.

I then went searching online and found that some of the material was from the Stonehenge Stars and Stripes fabric line.  I found out that there were 10″x10″ squares, 2.5″ strip sets and yardage available in the same fabrics and I could also find some of it in the local quilt shops.

The next steps was designing the quilt top and figuring out how much fabric I would need.  Oh, and I don’t think I stated that I needed to make a slightly oversized quilt for a California King bed.  Until you start measuring the size and sewing the quilt top together you don’t realize how big that is!

I realized if I ever wanted this quilt finished then I had to make a simple design and use as much of the precut 10″x10″ squares and 2.5″ strips as possible.  Once I had a few designs figured out I showed them to my husband.  I had a plain piece of blue laid between the two different designs to separate them, but he actually liked it best with the plain blue strip in the quilt.  So, the final quilt is a mixture of the two different designed I originally came up with.

After cutting, sewing and trimming down to size for what felt like forever the quilt top was done.  Then I wanted to use up as much as possible of the extra 10″x10″ squares and left over material so I decided to make a design for the back of the quilt too.

When it was all done I handed it off to Quilt Legacy in Dayton, NV to long arm quilt  since I had other projects I needed to work on and I knew it was going to be a major pain to quilt that size quilt on my domestic sewing machine.

I am very impressed with how the final product turned out.  The quilt pattern they used was perfect for the quilt top.  And my husband was very happy with the finished quilt.

 

As I stated, when I showed it during Show & Tell at the local Quilt Guild, I don’t quilt that often, but when I do I take on BIG projects.

From some of the matching yardage I also made two pillow shams.

What big project have you tackled lately?

Heather

 

 

High school basketball photos

For Christmas, I received a new DSL camera (I guess I should write a post about that – another item added to the growing list…).

This last spring I went to the Senior night for the local high school and took some photos of a friend’s son, who I have known his whole life, while he was playing basketball.

The people sitting around me had to listen to me squeal a few times since I was so surprised that I got the photo I was trying for.  So, here is one of the hundreds of photos I took.  I was really happy when the high school senior even posted some of the photos on his Facebook page.

to blog

Do you like to take photos?  If so, what do you like to take photos of (people, landscape, food. etc)?

Later – Heather

 

Homemade Ranch Dressing (Gluten-free even)

Another favorite recipe that I even have problems finding on the blog.  I updated the blog post even.  Enjoy!

While on vacation we decided we liked the flavor of the Restaurant Ranch Dressing (for dipping fries,etc) better than the ‘name brand’ gluten-free Ranch Dressing we have been buying for years.  I asked around and found out we probably could buy ‘Restaurant style’ Ranch Dressing, but it comes in large containers – about a gallon.

So, I did a Google search and found ‘Chili’s Ranch Dressing Recipe’ on http://www.food.com

http://www.food.com/recipe/chilis-ranch-dressing-392314

When I just went to check that the link was still valid it took me to:

http://www.geniuskitchen.com/recipe/amazing-pickle-juice-ranch-dressing-392314

I will definitely need to keep the link to this recipe handy.

Enjoy – Heather

Tip Thursday

Have you ever thought which are the most well used buttons on your microwave?

For ours it is 0, 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 since we usually put things in for 1 minute and 20 seconds, etc.

microwave

Recently we starting thinking that we should enter seconds instead of minutes and use the other buttons.

For example:

1 minute and 25 seconds = 85 seconds

and

1 minute and 16 seconds = 76 seconds

Our microwave works fine if we enter the time this way.

Have you ever entered the time via seconds?

Later – Heather

 

 

 

New to me author

I was challenged to find read a new to me author whose last name started with an ‘N’.

So, I found this book Sweet Tea and Secrets by Nancy Naigle at the local library.  The library marked it as a Romance, which I usually don’t read, but I really enjoyed this book.  Since I liked it so much I picked up the next book in the series from the library.

 

Have you read this book?

I now challenge you to read a book by a new to you author whose last name starts with ‘N’.  What book will you choose?

Later – Heather