Changes are Coming

A Look at Our Week

Things have certainly not slowed down this week! Between working, hiking/walking and cooking it has been a full week! During our trip to Ollie’s discount store last week, I stared at the kitchen gadget aisle. I just knew there was a kitchen gadget that I needed and had to have. Finally, I found it … a cookie scoop! It was perfect for making our mint chocolate chip cookies for St. Patrick’s Day! But this baking cookies every week deal is killing the diet plan!

My transcription work is continuing to go well. I am becoming faster each day and learning new tricks of the trade along the way. When I owned the preschool my guy built me the most amazing computer program. It proved to be a business saving tool! I loved it dearly and was always so impressed with how much easier he had made my job. Well, now he’s gone and done it again! I know have a computer program to track my transcription work. It even figures up how much I am making per hour with each job I complete. Quite impressive! (And yes, it may just be $9/hr…but let’s not forget, I made that $9/hr in my pajamas! :))

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The dieting scene seems to be at a standstill. May have something to do with the weekly batch of homemade cookies? We are exercising every chance we can! I make goals for myself with small steps on the weight loss journey. This usually works well for me and helps to keep me focused and grounded. I always share my goals with my guy, because that makes me accountable! My current goal is to lose 9 pounds before our NYC trip on April 12th. I had also made the goal this week that we would not go out to eat all week. We worked really hard on that one. We both absolutely love going out to eat. It’s one of our most favorite activities! We made it until Wednesday night when we broke down and headed out to one of our fave places for Nachos. And then it continued Thursday as we were traveling. Oh well, there’s always next week!

Pic 1: Nachos from our fave place in Boone, N.C.

Pic 2 & 3: Peppers! We LOVE them! We eat them with/on everything! Cannot wait to grow our own!

The House Hunting Scene

We took big steps in our house hunting this week! We are in the process of renting a small 2 BR duplex in Mountain City, TN! This is our favorite location of all that we have visited and ideally where we would like to settle. We will not officially move in until Summer, but will use it as a home base when we are in the area until then.  We are currently waiting for everything to become finalized with the rental. Once this is done we will return to the area and begin setting up house!

We also stopped in and spoke with one of our favorite realtors in the area and began discussing the building process and what steps would need to be made first. We now have a list of local contractors that we will be setting meetings up with to review our plans and ideas. We have started looking at land and will be going to check several out once our housing situation is settled. Our house hunt is not over, we will continue searching for  houses, but are preparing ourselves for what may be our next step.  Exciting times! Scary times! Frustrating times! We are feeling it all!

This video was taken on the front porch of our rental house. I am absolutely in love! Cock-a-Doodle-Doo!

Hiking Adventures

We managed to get several short hikes in this week despite the 2 snowfalls we had! The animals are out and about and just as ready for Spring as we are! The green is beginning to show itself from under all of the brown! Sooner or later Spring is gonna happen, I just know it is! We keep check on a Mountain Laurel tree that my guy pulled another fallen tree off of in hopes of saving the beautiful Mountain Laurel. The tree is looking good so far, no blooms yet, but they should be coming soon.

The first pic is of a big black snake that was stretched out right across the hiking trail. Either she was pregnant and soon to deliver, or had just had a large lunch, not sure which. Now of course I could have very easily stepped over Mrs. Snake and went about by way, and I have no doubt she would have been fine with that, or I could have followed my guy as he just skirted right around her, but I needed a little more distance between us. So, I ended up going way uphill and off trail in order to put much as much distance as possible between me and the snake!

The second pic is from one of our hikes when we took the trails that go around the Danville Braves baseball field.

The third pic is 2 deer we saw during one of our hikes. They stood there still for a few minutes before running away. I love watching these animals in their natural habitats! Not too closely though!

The last pic is one of the small waterfalls on the Riverside trail that we walk on frequently. It is one of my favorite trails and has several bridges and small waterfalls.

Traveling Times

Our only traveling this week was to Mountain City, Tn. but it was a beautiful drive! Once we hit Wilkesboro, N.C. the view starts to change and you can see the mountains ahead. On our drive the mountains were beautiful capped with snow. It is a truly breath taking sight. I cannot wait until I get to see it every day!

Cutler and I will be going to Tennessee this coming weekend to see the family for Easter. Time to take more pictures of our kids since they insist on constantly growing! My guy is staying here solo so he can play in his annual Easter gig at a local church.

 

Sappy  Selfies

Here’s one from one of our hikes this week!

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Have a wonderful week! xoxoxo

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Day One

My new life has begun! Three years ago when I laid out my “three year plan” it seemed so far away in the distance. I didn’t think it would ever arrive. Yet, here we are, three (well two and a half) years later. The sale of my business is complete and my new retired lifestyle began today!

It’s been a strange feeling over the last few days. Very hard to pinpoint and describe just exactly how I’m feeling. My man was out of town the last five days so it’s been just me here dealing with all these new feelings. For 19 years I had a specific purpose to fulfill. I knew each and everyday what my purpose was. Each day brought on it’s own different challenges, but the purpose remained the same. Work. I’ve been known to work entirely too hard and too much and way too many hours. I’ve worked since I was 14 years old. I was raised by two of the hardest workers I’ve ever met. That work ethic was instilled in my sister, brother and myself. I wish the rest of the world had that same experience!  The work ethic is still here, although “retired” I am working from home doing transcription work. Today was my first full day home with no “outside work”. I worked all day long! Between computer work and cleaning and reorganizing and Spring cleaning (yes, I Spring Clean during a snowstorm) and cooking dinner it was a full day! Staying busy is definitely helping settle the mix of feelings I’ve been having.

I began this blog a couple of  years ago to help myself deal with the death of my Dad. Writing the feelings out really did help me to deal with all those emotions. The emotions are still here four years later. The four year anniversary of Dad’s death was last week and my mind just kept going back to that last week four years ago. It seems like yesterday, yet it seems like a lifetime ago. Then the purpose of the blog seemed to shift to dealing with being alone for part of the summer while my guy worked out of town. Those days and weeks are hard! We love being together and when we cannot be we both have a difficult time adjusting! The blog gave me the chance to catch him up on my day to day activities. Now, I think it may be time for the purpose of the blog to shift yet again. Several people have expressed an interest in keeping in touch with our many adventures now that they will not be seeing me on a daily basis. I’m no longer a big fan of Facebook. The drama filled posts turn me away. And we always joke that the Facebook world hates us! Our super, sappy, lovey-dovey posts and selfies everywhere we go, faces aglow, big smiles, always so extremely happy… yeah, it’s sickening! So, to keep from flooding Facebook with our happiness, I will use this blog instead! I will post a link to the blog on Facebook and any who wish to follow our journey may. Others are free to scroll past and never click, and that’s fine!

I’ve been asked several times since an end date for work has been set, what our first big trip is going to be … Well…. We’re going to New York City! I have always wanted to go to NYC. Never been before! Want to go see the sights and say I’ve done it. He on the other hand would much rather prefer going just about anywhere else. The big city excitement does absolutely nothing for him. No mountains, no hiking, pollution, noise, traffic, yeah.. totally not his scene at all. I’ve mentioned going before and he’s always shut it down rather quickly. As things with the business sale began falling into place, one night he looked over at me and said, “So, do you want to go to New York City?” I said, “Well, yeah, always have.” He then announced that we would go as our celebratory trip for selling the business. But his promise came with stipulations. We would not set anything or buy any tickets until the sale was complete. Everything done and then the planning for a long weekend trip would begin. We set our time for sometime in April. And so, the concrete planning will begin tonight! A friend that visits NYC frequently has hooked me up with a perfect agenda! All the sights, Broadway show (I’m leaning towards Phantom, easy tickets to get on such a short notice), and all the excitement that NYC has to offer. I can’t wait! Let the planning begin.

And then there’s reality. The reality of this move we are supposed to be making this summer. To where you ask? Well, yeah, we aren’t really quite sure of that yet! We know the areas we would like to be in. But have had 0 luck finding a house in those areas. We have started tossing around the idea of buying land instead and building our house. That option is both exciting and scary at the same time. Most nights we have a difficult time deciding what to eat for dinner, and in building a house there are major decisions that have to be made, lots of them! It is overwhelming and mind blowing at this point. And well, if you know my man you know he is somewhat of a perfectionist type, and from my experience very little about building a house is considered perfect. We have already decided that if we do end up building, we will rent a house/apartment in the area so that we would be able to report to the job site everyday. He will be there for inspection, I will deliver doughnuts and coffee to act as a buffer for his questioning and scrutiny. We still hold out hope that as the housing market opens up this Spring, we will find the perfect house, already built, in the perfect area. Come on universe…hook a girl up!

Dinner tonight was delicious! Weight loss is a big part of my everyday. I go up and down on a regular basis it seems. I go from eating right and living a healthy lifestyle to going out to eat and eating big every night. It’s a hard ride. But I am confident with my new life that I will finally be able to stay on track once and for all! More time to exercise, more time for meal planning and preparation. And once our move is made, I will be all about growing our own vegetables and canning foods to enjoy throughout the year! I can’t wait! So tonight’s dinner plan was Sweet-n-Sour Turkey Meatballs with peppers & onions over Egg Noodles. So yummy! See picture below! And so easy to make! Just popped meatballs, sugar-free grape jelly, chili sauce and peppers and onions in crock pot and done! IMG_1779[1].JPGThe blog will more than likely include more food pics and hiking pics than anything else lol. I will try to keep the sappy selfies to a minimum though. 😉

Have to go start my snow day puzzle now! More to come later!

xoxoxo ❤

 

Stressful Day!

I’m in a mood! We will see which direction this goes lol! It’s a sad day….#1 I had to take Anton back to work today after 2 wonderful weeks together! Luckily, I will be joining him in just 1 week! #2 I got another speeding ticket today! :O I managed to make it through most of my driving years and could say “I’ve never gotten a ticket” Until a few years ago….I seem to be trying to catch up for all the years I went ticketless! This time I was clueless! I honestly thought I was doing the correct speed limit! Had cruise set and everything! GrRRR!!!! I was as nervous as could be the rest of the ride home! Had a cop pull out behind me and it tore me to pieces until he finally passed me! #3 I have to go back to work in the morning after 6 days off!!! 😦 and to make it all worse…I am short staffed all week and have tons and tons of work to get done! I went in this evening after hours and did a little bit but couldn’t concentrate well enough to do anything major. #4 I have an issue that has me worrying….I am already doing everything I can do to resolve the issue at the moment, lots of sitting and waiting, which I am not good at! I try keeping it out of my mind since  no good can come from the constant worry, but it always seems to creep back up. I feel as if I am in need of a very good cry. One of those ugly face cries. I feel it building up!

On the bright side! We had a wonderful weekend away! We visited my family & Anton’s family. It was an extremely busy, on the go time, but lots of fun! My family proved yet again to be dysfunctional and full of drama! (Uggghh! Thanks guys!) While his family proved to be entertaining, fun, and so easy to be around! I love every second of our time together and I long for it the second we are not together. It’s gonna be a long week! I’m sure I will write more later! xoxo

Life Lessons

Learning life’s little lessons can be very difficult. At 41 years old, I find myself still learning these lessons. I have found it is even harder to watch your child learn these same lessons. Whenever he hurts, I hurt. Whether it’s a skinned knee, or bruised ego…it hurts.  Today’s life lesson has been: “Relationships Don’t Last Forever” Someone he thought was his friend has turned on him. Kids today can  be so very mean with their words and actions! It is hard as a mother, as a teacher, as an adult to watch as they tear each other down. My hope is always that my son can and will rise above the drama, that he will be the better person in situations such as this and not stoop down to other’s levels. And I hope that when he is faced with a similar circumstance he is able to stop and think and remember this feeling and not cause pain to others. I want him to be the kid that sees the underdog others make fun of, tear down and for him to be the one to befriend him and build him up instead.

I also want him to learn from these types of situations. Not to be like his mother! Learn from your experiences and change things so they do not happen again. Not to be afraid to walk away from a relationship/friendship when it is no longer going in the right directions. If someone makes you feel bad about yourself, get away! Be strong and stand up for himself and what he knows and believes is right. To never hold anything back for fear of what others may think. I want him to be confident in himself and not let others have such an influence on that.

Everyday I see little parts of me that come out in him. Most of the time these things make me smile, to see the influence I have had on his personality. He is adopted, so nothing inherited from me, but his thoughts and actions can sometimes mimic mine exactly. For instance, he coped with todays hurt feelings by finding that perfect quote and posting it online. Something I have done too many times to count.

My first instinct was to let Mama Lion come roaring out. I held back and instead gave sage advice and lots of support. I will keep Mama Lion close by for awhile though, never know when she may be needed!

Weekend Away!

The weekends always seem so short!!! Especially when they are as busy as this past weekend was for us! We went back to my boyfriend’s hometown to move some more of his belongings here (YAY! 🙂 ) While we were there we were invited to an authentic Japanese dinner by a friend of the family. WOW! The food was out of this world…amazing….delicious!! And so much of it! I even tried sushi for the very first time! Talk about stepping out of one’s box…that is something I would have never tried before. Fortunately the new me is open to new experiences! I have to admit I was a little nervous about trying it! Everyone watching …waiting for my reaction. And it was ….o.k.! I didn’t feel the need to spit any  part of it out! Definitely a win for new experiences! We were also served fried and steamed dumplings for our appetizers. Dinner started with a salad with this awesome Oriental Salad Dressing that I must find for sell somewhere! Then came the miso soup (yesss…just like in the Japanese restaurants!) Then we had a chicken dish with some type of chow mein type noodles and a beef and noodle dish. Both were very good! Just when we thought dinner was over, we were presented with yet another plate full of a variety of food. Shrimp, chicken, salads, steak marinated in ginger, rice…..we ate until we couldn’t move! It was all delicious! The entertainment that went along with our dinner was just as good as the food. A 70 year old Japanese woman telling stories about her life, about her culture and her family. The evening ended with everyone taking turns singing karaoke! Our hostess even sang two beautiful Japanese songs! It was a delightful evening spent with family and friends and I only wish we all lived closer and could have these type of evenings together more often!