January 15, 2012

Healthy, Quick ‘n Easy Snack/Breakfast For You and Your Spawn

by Gina

This is more assembly instructions than a true recipe…

What you’ll need:

  • Lightly salted rice cakes (Quaker has a widely available brand of rice cakes)
  • Peanut butter or other nut butter
  • Your favorite fruit and/or chocolate chips

Take a lightly salted rice cake. Spread peanut butter (or your preferred nut butter) over the top of it. Add your fruit of choice to the top of the peanut butter layer. Boy Spawn and I both like thinly sliced bananas and strawberries. Girl Spawn prefers whole raspberries in the shape of a smiley face. Experiment with your favorite nut butters and fruits, and let your spawn experiment with different shapes and flavors. It lends well to preschool aged DIY. It’s also good with chocolate chips, either alone or with fruit. Don’t discount the rice cake until you try it with nut butters and fruit and/or chocolate embellishments! Depending on what you top it with, it can be low carb, low cal, and low fat…

January 7, 2012

A smoke-free me?

by Gina

Early last month, I made a small purchase at Walgreens. Or, well… to be totally honest, I made a regular purchase and “sneaked in” a small item which, if purchased alone, would have been a small purchase. I didn’t know it at the time, but that little act with that little item would give me the desire to be smoke-free by Christmas.

The item was a Blu disposable electronic cigarette.

I’ve had my eye on electronic cigarettes (or e-cigs) for years. I’m attracted to the fact that they are smoke-less and have much fewer chemicals than cigarettes. I wasn’t sure how I’d like e-cigs, so I figured that $7.99 for a disposable would be a great way to try them out before investing in an eventual cost-saving starter kit. When I got home with my new novelty purchase, I opened the package and started “smoking.” I loved it! The flavor was tobacco-ish, but better. Sweeter. The hit was very similar to the Camel Turkish Golds and the L&M Turkish Blend that I was accustomed to. And the smell? No offensive odor. According to others around me, it either smelled like nothing, or had a very slight coffee smell. After that first disposable, I made it a point purchased more when life would allow. Being smoke-free by Christmas didn’t exactly happen (I smoked two packs of Camels, and also used Ex-Husbands loose tobacco with rolling papers), but I was smoking less tobacco overall.

I’ve been doing the e-cig/regular cigarette combo consistently until today. Ex-Husband kindly purchased a Blu starter kit for me earlier in the day, and even though there is less nicotine in the starter kit versus the disposable e-cigs or regular cigarettes, I plan to not regularly smoke anything but my e-cigs from this point forward. I don’t feel comfortable saying that I’ve quit smoking, because I’m still “smoking” something (the e-cig community uses the term “vaping” because the smoke in an e-cig is not smoke, but water vaper). Either way, it is a better smelling and less chemical-y alternative to smoking, so it will be healthier for me (not totally healthy, but healthy-ER).

As for which brands are best, I’ve only tried two. Blu and Finity (both sold at Walgreens). In my humble opinion, Blu rocks when it comes to flavor and “hit.” The flavor of Finity, in my opinion, is gross and metallic tasting. Your mileage may vary, but I highly recommend Blu based on personal experience. Also, there might be other brands out there better than Blu, but I don’t have a desire to seek them out. For now, I’m happy with Blu and I like their products enough that I’m not inclined to seek out any other brands.

If you’d like more information about e-cigs and Blu, you can visit www.blucigs.com.

*Blu and Walgreens gave me nothing for posting this. In fact, they don’t even know I’ve blogged about them! This is not an advertisement. :-)

May 1, 2011

Where were you on May 1, 2011?

by Gina

In 12.623 years from now, someone, somewhere is going to ask me that question. This is what I will say:

Out of sheer laziness, I (and subsequently Boy/Girl Spawn) skipped church.

The three of us went out to eat at Winsteads, leaving the house at 11am and arriving at the restaurant at approximately 11:07am. Girl Spawn had a hot dog with ketchup, mustard on the side, fries, and Sprite. Boy Spawn had chicken fingers, onion rings, no sauces of any kind for either – not even ketchup (yep, choked ’em down dry), and Sprite. I had a double Winstead with cheese, ketchup, mustard, and bacon, onion rings on the side, and a Coke. When we left, we got shakes to go. Girl Spawn and Boy Spawn requested chocolate and vanilla respectively (despite the offer of more fun flavors). I ordered butterscotch. They both wanted to know if there was really scotch in it… Nope. Then they both wanted to know if there was really butter in it.

From there, we went directly to Wal-Mart (shudder) to get an inexpensive pair of eyeglasses for Boy Spawn because I was paying out-of-pocket and needed the discount.

We went home. They played with the neighborhood kids for a while.

At 3:15, we left for Girl Spawn’s hair appointment. Her hair was insanely long, and – being 4 years old – was insanely hard to brush each morning (and, basically, hard to brush any time she moved).

We arrived home at about 4:30, had a boring old dinner, they went to bed after watching Toy Story 3.

I made a quick trip to the grocery store, came home, watched last nights episode of Dr. Who, and at (approximately) 10:10pm, the show ended, and Facebook told me “the news.”

Text frenzy ensued (both with people who love Dr. Who as much as I do, and with people wanting to discuss the news)

During the President’s speech, I was standing next to Ex Husband in his bedroom watching on his computer.

Within seconds after the president stopped speaking, Girl Spawn woke up to go to the bathroom. I told her that in 10 years, she’d know how important this day is. It fell on deaf ears. She was on a mission to pee. She went back to bed.

And now I’m here; blogging.

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