May 062017

April 28th was my oldest granddaughter’s 19th birthday. She wanted to try a new restaurant, The Melting Pot, so that’s where we went. It was a nice restaurant. We liked the food, but the entree wasn’t as good as I was expecting. The website says to expect the meal to last 3 hours. It took us 4, I suppose because there was so many of us, my son Jeremy and dil Susie, grandkids Arianna and Jordan, Luigi who is a friend of Arianna, my son Anthony, and me.

You get to choose the type of cheese and chocolate you want for two of the fondues.

The cheese fondue comes with artisan breads, seasonal fruits and veggies.

The chocolate fondue comes with fresh strawberries, blondies, bananas, pineapple, marshmallow treats, pound cake and brownies.

For the entree I got Tampa Big Night Out which included cold water lobster, teriyaki-marinated sirloin, Memphis-style dry rub pork, sriracha lime shrimp, Sun-dried tomato chicken, & wild mushroom sacchetti.

I liked that we got to cook our own meat in a pot. All the food tasted good, especially the chocolate fondue. Of course I couldn’t eat it all so I ended up bringing some of the meat home.

We had a fun time, I love spending time with my family.

This is the chandelier above our table.
I thought it was a bit strange, but I liked it.

If you’ve been to The Melting Pot before, what did you think?


Weekend Cooking is hosted @ Beth Fish Reads

May 052017

Hosted @ Freda’s Voice

Life After Life by Katie Ganshert

She felt beckoned. Impossible enticed. Like an alcoholic staring down a snifter filled with the finest cognac. She nodded slightly and walked through the gate.

Hosted @ Coffee Addicted Writer

Question: Do you re-arrange and move books around on the shelves or move books off of your bookshelves to another area after a certain amount of time or do you just leave them the way they are?

I don’t move my books around on the shelves, but I have moved all my bookshelves into three different rooms in my house. I’ll be moving soon to a much smaller house so I need to keep only the ones that I really want to keep. When I move there won’t be enough rooms to move the shelves from one room to the next.

Hosted @ McGuffy’s Reader & 15andmeowing

1. I no longer use a landline.

2. My most treasured piece of jewelry is my mother’s ring my kids bought me.

3. This year, I have learned that I am a cat person. Our rescue kitty Jaspurr won’t let me not be 🙂

4. I would like to get moved before this year is over.

May 032017


Hosted @ From This Side Of The Pond

1. Can you tell I’m embracing a Cinco de Mayo theme here this week? Do you like Mexican food? What’s your favorite dish? How about on the side-black beans, pinto beans, refried beans, rice? What about heat-mild, medium, hot? Will you celebrate with Mexican food and drink on May 5th aka Cinco de Mayo?
I love me some Mexican food and usually eat it at least twice a week. My favorite is stacked Enchiladas, but I also love tacos, burritos, chalupas, chorizo and avocados. I like my food a bit hot.

2. Ever been to Mexico? For work or holiday? Love it or no? If you haven’t been is this a place you’d like to visit? Can you speak Spanish?
I’ve always wanted to visit Mexico, but haven’t found anyone else who wants to go. I can speak a limited amount of Spanish, but I have Rosetta Stone and want to keep learning.

3. What’s one thing you may accomplish this month?
I’m such a procrastinator that I have no idea.

4. If you were mayor of your village, city, or town, what’s one thing you’d like to see changed, done away with, revamped, or accomplished? Is serving in public office something you’ve ever seriously considered?
There’s not really much for teens to do in town, so I would love to see a “teen center” built to give kids another place to hang out. And no, I’ve never thought about serving in public office.

5. What’s something that may be popular, but that you just don’t get?
I don’t get why there are so many food bloggers out there that take multiple photos of the same food and post them all in the same blog post. I only need to see one photo, not a bunch. It’s the same thing. And it makes the page load sooooo slowwwww.

6. Can’t let this week slip by without mentioning Thursday May 4th is Star Wars Day. As in ‘May the 4th be with you’ ahem. Are you a fan of the Star Wars series? Exactly how much of a fan are you? On a scale of 1-10 with 10 being ‘I’ve seen every film, own the action figures, might have dressed as Darth Vader for Halloween one year’, and 1 being, ‘what’s a Vader?’ -where do you land?
I’m familiar with the Star Wars movies, but don’t think I’ve seen the first one all the way through, and haven’t seen the others at all. So, I guess I land on 1, although I do know what a Vader is.

7. Scroll back through your blog posts and in three sentences or less tell us the general theme of your fourth blog post. Does it still ring true today? Is it a topic you re-visit on your blog from time to time?
My fourth blog post is a review for June Bug by Chris Farley. It was SO good! Yes, I re-visit this topic often.

8. Insert your own random thought here.
The older I get the less I like humidity and cold weather.

May 022017

Hosted by Joy @ Joy’s Book Blog

April was good, I met almost all my goals. I’m switching things up for May. Instead of tracking steps, I’m going to start tracking miles walked.

May Goals:
daily: deep breathing, prayer/meditation, 80 oz. water
Tai Chi 3 times a week
strength training 3 times a week using SparkPeople videos
walk 4 miles at least 4 times a week

On The Menu
Tuesday: Bunless Cheeseburger served with veggies and salsa
Wednesday: Grilled chicken with vegetables
Thursday: Taco Salad
Friday: Left Over Taco Salad
Saturday: Eating Out
Sunday: Pork chops with vegetables

May 022017
Having Our Say: The Delany Sisters’ First 100 Years
by Sarah L. Delany, A. Elizabeth Delany


Hosted @ Bibliophile by the Sea

Both more than one hundred years old, sarah (“Sarah”) Delany and her sister Annie Elizabeth (“Bessie”) Delany are among the oldest living witnesses to American history. They are also the oldest surviving members of one of the nation’s preeminent black families, which rose to prominence just one generation after the civil war.

May 012017

Parents Strongly Cautioned
Studio: Music Box Films
DVD Release Date: December 27, 2016
Run Time: 116 minutes

Ove, an ill-tempered, isolated retiree who spends his days enforcing block association rules and visiting his wife’s grave, has finally given up on life just as an unlikely friendship develops with his boisterous new neighbors.

My Thoughts:
Ove was certainly a grouch, and the actor did a great job of portraying him. I don’t know why he was so gruff, but he loved his wife with his whole heart, and felt her loss to his core. All he wanted to do was end it all, but his neighbors kept getting in his way.

I loved that Ove softened a bit when he got to know his new neighbors and a few other people who came into his life. It made him grow on me and become one of my all time favorite characters from a book or movie.

All the actors did a great job, and I enjoyed putting faces to the voices I’d listened to through the audiobook.

Since I loved the book, I was pretty sure I’d love the movie.  Ove was a joy to watch after loving him so much from the book. I’d enjoy watching this movie from time to time, it had both funny and sad parts, with some roll your eyes moments thrown in.

As is usual, I liked the movie a bit less than the book, only because there was so much left out of the movie. Both are well worth your time though.

If you haven’t read the book or seen the movie, you should do so. Both will be on my favorites for this year list.

You can read my book review here

Apr 272017

Room by Emma Donoghue
Narrated by: Michal Friedman, Ellen Archer, Robert Petkoff, Suzanne Toren
Audible Audio Edition
Listening Length: 10 hours and 52 minutes
Program Type: Audiobook
Version: Unabridged
Publisher: Hachette Audio Release Date: September 13, 2010

To five-year-old Jack, Room is the entire world. It is where he was born and grew up; it’s where he lives with his Ma as they learn and read and eat and sleep and play. At night, his Ma shuts him safely in the wardrobe, where he is meant to be asleep when Old Nick visits.

Room is home to Jack, but to Ma, it is the prison where Old Nick has held her captive for seven years. Through determination, ingenuity, and fierce motherly love, Ma has created a life for Jack. But she knows it’s not enough…not for her or for him. She devises a bold escape plan, one that relies on her young son’s bravery and a lot of luck. What she does not realize is just how unprepared she is for the plan to actually work.

Told entirely in the language of the energetic, pragmatic five-year-old Jack, Room is a celebration of resilience and the limitless bond between parent and child, a brilliantly executed novel about what it means to journey from one world to another.

What I Thought:
Wow! This book kept me in it’s grasp from start to finish. I didn’t want to stop listening for a minute.

I can’t imagine being held captive like that. For Ma, the horror was being in Room. To Jack, it was all he knew. Ma made sure he had as normal a childhood as he could. Teaching him, making sure he got excersise, playing games, watching tv. But she wanted to get them out of there. When she planned their escape, I was scared for Jack. I didn’t know if he could do it. But he did! Then I wondered if he’d be able to lead the police to Room, and he did!

They were finally free, but that’s when the truth hit Jack. Everything he thought was only in tv or Room, was actually out in the world too. And there was so much more out there. He saw and felt the sun for the first time. He talked to someone other than Ma for the first time. He saw a real dog, tree, cars….

This book was amazing. I thought it ended too abrubtly, and was wanting more. I wanted to know how Ma and Jack did in the following years. Still, I loved this book. It was so sad, but had a few funny parts. It shows that there is always hope. There was one part concerning Ma that shocked me. I still struggle with it. If you haven’t read this book, you’re missing a good one. I’m glad I listened to the audio version. All the narrators did a great job.

I loved ROOM!

Apr 262017

Hosted by Kathy @ BermudaOnion

1.  Caerphilly
This was one of the ingredients in a recipe posted @ Honey From Rock. I’d never heard of it so I looked it up.

Caerphilly is a hard, crumbly white cheese that originated in the area around the town of Caerphilly, Wales. It is thought to have been created to provide food for the local coal miners.


2. Serviceberry
I saw this word @ Beth Fish Reads in her Stacked Up Book Thoughts post.

Serviceberry is rare in that it offers interest in every season. It kicks off in spring with beautiful white flowers, which develop into tasty purple berries that attract birds in early summer. Or harvest the berries and use them to make delicious jams, jellies, and pies. The plant’s bright green or bluish green leaves turn stunning shades of red and orange in fall, and its silvery bark offers winter appeal. You can grow serviceberry as a large shrub or small tree.

Apr 252017

Hosted by Joy @ Joy’s Book Blog

Last week I worked 3 days on a different shift, so even though it was the same amount of hours, I didn’t get as many steps as on my usual shift 🙁

I could have walked on my treadmill to make the steps up, but I didn’t. Instead, I added some time to my strength training workouts.

Goals for April:
daily: deep breathing, prayer, stretching, 80 oz. water
Tai Chi/ Qi Gong once a week each
strength training 4 times a week

Do Yoga With Me Starting over due to back trouble the last few weeks

Steps Last Week:
Tuesday~ 4/18: 5,205 steps
Wednesday~ 4/19: 8,911 steps
Thursday ~ 4/20: 5,067 steps
Friday ~ 4/14: 21: 5,613 steps
Saturday ~ 4/22: 7,324 steps
Sunday ~ 4/23: 7,836 steps
Monday ~ 4/24: 6,114

Strength Training: 
Tuesday~ 4/18: 150 minutes
Wednesday~ 4/19: 150 minutes
Thursday ~ 4/20: 180 minutes
Friday ~ 4/21: 180 minutes
Saturday ~ 4/22: 180 minutes
Sunday ~ 4/23: 150 minutes
Monday ~ 4/24: 180 minutes

On The Menu 
Tuesday: Clean Eating Sheet Pan Mexican Chicken Dinner

Wednesday: Crock Pot Spicy Cabbage and Sausage

Thursday: Steak, Baked Potato, Broccoli

Friday: Low Carb Beef Burritos

Saturday: eating out

Sunday: Baked Pineapple Teriyaki Pork Chops w/fried rice

Monday: Bunless Hamburger with Sweet Potato Fries

How’d your exercise go last week?

Apr 232017

Sunday Reflections

A hot and beautiful day

I don’t know what I’m going to do this week, I have Tuesday thru Friday off…and that I really need to catch up on the book reviews I need to post

That I have Tuesday thru Friday off

Lillian Boxfish Takes A Walk by Kathleen Rooney

Lots of movies I dvr’d

This summer isn’t as humid as the last few summers

I can still get by with just a few hours of sleep

Lots of walking and strength training, some tai-chi

In The Kitchen…
Eating out today

Today’s To-Do List…
I already did my shift at work, so I’ll be reading and watching tv

One of my favorite things:
Tomatoes, could eat them at every meal

Pin It & Do It…
Crock Pot Spicy Cabbage & Sausage (I’m using chorizo)

Looking forward to…
Going to the beach

A Favorite Bible Verse…
The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times.
Psalms 12:6

A favorite quote…
“If you spend your whole life waiting for the storm, you’ll never enjoy the sunshine.”
Morris West

From the camera….

Apr 212017


Lillian Boxfish Takes A Walk


Hosted @ Freda’s Voice

His awkwardness had fallen away as he warmed up to his own argument, and he summed up with the satisfied smile of a debate-society champ. It was impossible to tell how sincere he’d been about any of this.

Hosted @ Coffee Addicted Writer

This week’s question is: Would you stop reading a book if an element of the plot strongly clashed with your personal beliefs, or would you continue reading until you finished the book? I’d keep reading because I think it’s important to know all sides of things. The exception would be if I felt the author was trying to convince me to change my mind to their way of thinking, especially my religious beliefs.


Hosted @ Rose City Reader

There once was a girl named Phoebe Snow. She wore only white and helt tight to a violet corsage, an emblem of modesty. She was not retiring, though, and her life spun out as a series of journeys through mountain tunnels carved from poetry. I never saw her do anything besides boarding, riding, or disembarking a train, immaculate always, captivating conductors, enchanting other passengers.

Apr 182017

Hosted by Joy @ Joy’s Book Blog

Last week I took a few extra rest days hoping my back would completely stop hurting and it helped. This week I’m going to play catch up.

Goals for April:
daily: deep breathing, prayer, stretching, 80 oz. water
Tai Chi/ Qi Gong once a week each
strength training 4 times a week

Do Yoga With Me

Steps Last Week:
Tuesday~ 4/11: rest day
Wednesday~ 4/12: 7,632 steps
Thursday ~ 4/13: rest day
Friday ~ 4/14: 10,rest day
Saturday ~ 4/15: 10,889 steps
Sunday ~ 4/16: 7,411 steps
Monday ~ 4/17: rest day

Cardio/Strength Training: 
Tuesday~ 4/11: rest day
Wednesday~ 4/12: 120 minutes
Thursday ~ 4/13: rest day
Friday ~ 4/14: 90 rest day
Saturday ~ 4/15: 60 minutes
Sunday ~ 4/16: 90 minutes
Monday ~ 4/17: rest day

On The Menu 
Tuesday: 15 Bean Soup w/Smoked Sausage
Wednesday: left over soup
Thursday: Clean Eating Sweet Potatoes & Chicken Sheet Pan Dinner
Friday: Hamburgers & fries
Saturday: Chinese take out
Sunday: ?
Monday: Chorizo Sausage with Cabbage, Onions, and Peppers

How’d your exercise go last week?

Apr 162017

Sunday Reflections

Right now it’s 70°  but it’s supposed to get up to 85°

It’s time for a little beach therapy

For my Mitsubishi Mirage, I love it

Lilian Boxfish Takes A Walk by Kathleen Rooney

The Choice by Nicholas Sparks

Salute To The Music Of The Bee Gees, tonight @ 8:00, CBS

It would stop being so cold at night

You need to rid yourself of people who have a negative effect on you

Doing ok, my back is a little better

In The Kitchen…
Trying a new soup this week, and a few favorite recipes

Today’s To-Do List…
I have to work tonight

One of my favorite things:
In the last few months I’ve become addicted to audio books

Pin It & Do It…
Something similar to this wall plaque

Looking forward to…
Going to Silver Springs, I haven’t been in years

A Favorite Bible Verse…
In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths
Proverbs 3:6

A favorite quote…
Be careful with your words, they can be forgiven, but never forgotten

From the camera….

Apr 152017

I saw this recipe @ House Of Yumm and since I love grilled cheese and all the ingredients used in it, I decided to try it. The only thing different I did  was use slices of Colby Jack cheese instead of shredded Monterey Jack.

2 slices of bread
3 slices of pineapple, fresh or canned
3 slices canadian bacon
shredded Monterey Jack cheese
oregano and parsley

Butter one side of each slice of bread and sprinkle with parsley and oregano to taste

On non buttered side of bread place the shredded cheese, then the canadian bacon, pineapple, and top with the other slice of bread, buttered side facing up

Cook sandwich on stove top on a griddle or frying pan

Once bread is toasted on one side flip the sandwich to toast the other side

Cook on a low heat to allow the cheese to melt while the bread is toasting

What I Thought
This sandwich was so good! I’ve never added oregano and parsley to the bread when making grilled cheese, and I loved the flavor it added. Quick and simple, and very yummy, I’ll be making this again!

Weekend Cooking

Souper Sunday

Apr 142017

Novel Destinations


Hosted @ Freda’s Voice

William Sydney Porter was accused of embezzling money from an Austin bank where he worked as a teller, went on the lam to Honduras, and returned to face charges after receiving the news that his young wife was dying. Convicted of the crime, Porter spent three years in an Ohio prison, where he occupied his time writing and adopted the pseudonym O. Henry.

Hosted @ Coffee Addicted Writer

This week’s question is: When you feature a book in your posts, do you include a book cover? Yes, I always include a book cover for every book I post about, and I add a link to the book, usually GoodReads.


Hosted @ Rose City Reader

What conditions are necessary for the creation of works of art?” Virginia Woolf pondered in A Room Of One’s Own. For Henry David Thoreau, it was the primitive surroundings of a one room cabin stripped of all but the necessities.

Apr 122017

Hosted by Kathy @ BermudaOnion

I saw this word on the tv of the pump I was using at the Shell gas station.
It was the word of the day.

1: marked with or characterized by disgrace or shame : dishonorable
2: deserving of shame or infamy : despicable
3: humiliating, degrading an ignominious defeat

ignominiously adverb
ignominiousness noun

Apr 112017

Ashes by Steven Manchester

Middle-aged brothers Jason and Tom Prendergast thought they were completely done with each other. Perceived betrayal had burned the bridge between them, tossing them into the icy river of estrangement. But life and death has a robust sense of irony, and when they learn that their cruel father has died and made his final request that they travel together across the country to spread his ashes, they have no choice but to spend a long, long car trip in each other s company. It s either that or lose out on the contents of the envelope he s left with his lawyer. The trip will be as gut-wrenching as each expects it to be . . . and revealing in ways neither of them is prepared for.

At turns humorous, biting, poignant, and surprisingly tender, ASHES puts a new spin on family and dysfunction with a story that is at once fresh and timelessly universal.

What I Thought:
This is the third book I’ve read by this author and like the other two, I loved it.

The story is sad because of the way the boys were raised, but there is is humor too. Also, a meeting that Jason and Tom had with someone brought a change to the story. I loved that part! The meeting brought a warmth to the book and a new way of looking at things for both Jason and Tom.

I love stories about relationships and this book was full of them. Jason and Tom were great characters. They both had flaws and issues of their own, as well as a badly marred relationship, but being stuck in a car together for days could have only turned out one of two ways, and I’m glad it turned out the way it did.

A quick read, and a very good book!

Apr 112017

Hosted by Joy @ Joy’s Book Blog

I haven’t been able to do as much as I wanted to do this past week. I’ve done good on my steps and strength training, but I’ve had a kink in my back on the lower right side that’s had me slightly bent over and not being able to stand straight. I almost called out of work a few days but didn’t. It’s starting to feel better today so hopefully in a day or two I can do more.

Goals for April:
daily: deep breathing, prayer, stretching, 80 oz. water
Tai Chi/ Qi Gong once a week each
strength training 4 times a week

Do Yoga With Me

Steps Last Week:
Tuesday~ 4/4: rest day
Wednesday~ 4/5: 7,674 steps
Thursday ~ 4/6: 9,125 steps
Friday ~ 4/7: 10,474 steps
Saturday ~ 4/8: 9,396 steps
Sunday ~ 4/9: 7,834 steps
Monday ~ 4/10: 8,327 steps

Cardio/Strength Training: 
Tuesday~ 4/4: rest day
Wednesday~ 4/5: 90 minutes
Thursday ~ 4/6: 90 minutes
Friday ~ 4/7: 90 minutes
Saturday ~ 4/8: 90 minutes
Sunday ~ 4/9: 90 minutes
Monday ~ 4/10: 90 minutes

On The Menu 
Tuesday: Taco Salad
Wednesday: Baked Pineapple Teriyaki Pork Chops
Thursday: Chicken & Sausage 15 Bean Soup
Friday: leftover soup
Saturday: eating out
Sunday: eating out
Monday: Chorizo Sausage with Cabbage, Onions, and Peppers

How’d your exercise go last week?

Apr 062017

She Reads is back with 2 selections for Spring:

A Bridge Across The Ocean by Susan Meissner
Wartime intrigue spans the lives of three women—past and present—in the latest novel from the acclaimed author of Secrets of a Charmed Life.

February, 1946. World War Two is over, but the recovery from the most intimate of its horrors has only just begun for Annaliese Lange, a German ballerina desperate to escape her past, and Simone Deveraux, the wronged daughter of a French Résistance spy.

Now the two women are joining hundreds of other European war brides aboard the renowned RMS Queen Mary to cross the Atlantic and be reunited with their American husbands. Their new lives in the United States brightly beckon until their tightly-held secrets are laid bare in their shared stateroom. When the voyage ends at New York Harbor, only one of them will disembark…

Present day. Facing a crossroads in her own life, Brette Caslake visits the famously haunted Queen Mary at the request of an old friend. What she finds will set her on a course to solve a seventy-year-old tragedy that will draw her into the heartaches and triumphs of the courageous war brides—and will ultimately lead her to reconsider what she has to sacrifice to achieve her own deepest longings.

Almost Missed You by Jessica Strawser
Violet and Finn were “meant to be,” said everyone, always.

They ended up together by the hands of fate aligning things just so. Three years into their marriage, they have a wonderful little boy, and as the three of them embark on their first vacation as a family, Violet can’t help thinking that she can’t believe her luck. Life is good.

So no one is more surprised than she when Finn leaves her at the beach—just packs up the hotel room and disappears. And takes their son with him. Violet is suddenly in her own worst nightmare, and faced with the knowledge that the man she’s shared her life with, she never really knew at all.

Caitlin and Finn have been best friends since way back when, but when Finn shows up on Caitlin’s doorstep with the son he’s wanted for kidnapping, demands that she hide them from the authorities, and threatens to reveal a secret that could destroy her own family if she doesn’t, Caitlin faces an impossible choice.

Told through alternating viewpoints of Violet, Finn and Caitlin, Jessica Strawser’s Almost Missed You is a powerful story of a mother’s love, a husband’s betrayal, connections that maybe should have been missed, secrets that perhaps shouldn’t have been kept, and spaces between what’s meant to be and what might have been.

Apr 042017

Hosted by Joy @ Joy’s Book Blog
Goals for April:
daily: deep breathing, prayer, stretching, 80 oz. water
Tai Chi/ Qi Gong once a week each
strength training 4 times a week

I recently found a great site, Do Yoga With Me, that has free videos for yoga, meditation, deep breathing, stretching/flexibility etc., and decided to do a few of the courses this month.

Tuesday~ 3/28: rest day
Wednesday~ 3/29: 8,894 steps
Thursday ~ 3/30: rest day
Friday ~ 3/31: 8,262 steps
Saturday ~ 4/1: 7,571 steps
Sunday ~ 4/2: 5,382 steps
Monday ~ 4/3: rest day

Cardio/Strength Training: 
Tuesday~ 3/28: rest day
Wednesday~ 3/29: 60 minutes
Thursday ~ 3/30: rest day
Friday ~ 3/31: 90 minutes
Saturday ~ 4/1: 90 minutes
Sunday ~ 4/2: 120 minutes
Monday ~ 4/3: rest day

On The Menu
Tuesday: Chicken and veggies
Wednesday: Chorizo Sausage with Cabbage, Onions, and Peppers
Thursday: Baked Pineapple Teriyaki Pork Chops
Friday: Enchiladas
Saturday: ?
Sunday: ?
Monday: Hawaiian Grilled Cheese