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Showing posts from November, 2012

Shopping Shopping

I think everyone has holiday gifts drifting around in their heads at this time of year.  This is definitely making me think about shopping more often.

I still try to support my values as much as possible and be a conscious shopper. 

This story about 112 workers killed in a factory with poor working conditions in Bangladesh brings some issues back into focus.  This factory made clothes for US and European stores, including Walmart, Sears, & Disney.  Is anyone really surprised?  Sadly, no, not really.  It's good to think about the real cost of your items before you shop.

On a bit more positive note this article about Costco actually gives me a little hope.  See... it is possible.  No, I do not believe Costco is perfect, but I am more than willing to be happy about little steps and hopefully those little steps will keep adding up and we can make real change.

Did you participate in Small Business Saturday
Personally, I didn't buy anything on Saturday, but I did help my parents&…


The yoga instructor for lunch time class today read this meditation at the end & it really hit me & I think I love it.
(I already shared it with two people so here it is for all of you.)

Awaken to Your Heart's Contentment

One day, you'll awaken to discover your life is all you wanted and hoped it would be.

Oh, you'll not find everything just the way your head said you wanted it.  It might not be the way you planned.  But you'll awaken to your dreams-your dreams of joy, love, and peace.  Your dream of freedom.

You'll see beyond the illusions.  You'll transcend your old limiting beliefs.  You'll wake up and notice that your past is just as it needed to be.  You'll see where you are today is good.  You'll notice that you laugh a lot, cry a lot, smile a lot.

You'll look at tomorrow with peace, faith, and hope-knowing that while you cannot control some of what life does, you have possibilities and powers in any circumstance life might bring.  The s…

Thanksgiving Recap 2012

(through photos)

Over the river (Mississippi) and through the woods to my parents' house I went...

Drive to my parents | Happy Birthday, Dado |  Karen's a morning person & loves to run.  Happy Thanksgiving 5k | lovely green bean casserole (it was really good!) & another casserole for Thanksgiving dinner (karen's a expert chopper and should do it more often ;)| We found our Christmas Tree! another step for my DIY coasters | thrift shopping success |  hemming those pants (i pretty much love them now) | this trip was supposed to be a break from technology for me.  i didn't bring any computer home or anything.  For some reason my family decided I am the tech expert & I have no idea why so I spent a lot of time attempting to fix their computer issues.  No break from technology for me. | Where Mom, Dad, & I went for a walk Saturday morning. | Pumpkin waffles for breakfast? Yes, please. | My parents' house is ready for Christmas |   I sewed myself a stocking.  It&…

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!  I hope you're having a lovely day doing what you're doing!

Karen & I ran a 5k this morning in a nearby town.

Hit up Grandma's traditional Thanksgiving breakfast.  Yum!

And now we are prepping for Thanksgiving celebrations.  I'm pretty excited to make this green bean casserole.

What is inevitable for me on Thanksgiving?  Questions/comments on why I'm a vegetarian, which I don't mind.  I know they do it with love.  Or at least I think so.  
I honestly don't feel like I miss out on anything on Thanksgiving aka Turkey Day.
Becoming a vegetarian was very easy for me.  I'm naturally not a huge fan of meat so it was a pretty natural transition.  I really can't think of a time I've craved any meat but fish.  
I know some people find vegetarianism very hard because they crave meat.  Everyone is different.  I don't.  You can think it's weird, but I may think it's odd you don't like spinach, but I won't give y…

Crafting Bug

I've got a serious crafting bug going on over here.  Basically ever since fall hit my list for DIYs keeps growing.

First up was this cross stitch, which I finished awhile ago, but I just put the background and frame finishing touches on it.

If you don't get it, think about Chicago.

I'm pretty sure I know which people on my Christmas list will not appreciate homemade gifts, but I do think I will be giving quite a few this year and I'm pretty excited about it.

I'm headed back to the Show Me State today and it sounds like there is quite a holiday ahead with lots of plans and so little time.

someone special's 61!

It's someone who's very special's 61st birthday today!!!


Last weekend I told one of my sister's friends Dad's turning 61 (when she asked, don't worry Dado, I don't just go around telling everyone) and she was shocked.  She said she doesn't think of him as a day over 45.  Which I think is a pretty big compliment!  
Even though you will always be a wise old owl (only because somehow you are able to store everything in your brain).  If you're ever playing trivia... pick this guy.

Such a good role model and I'm very lucky to get to call you DAD!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY! See ya Wednesday so be prepared for more celebrations than just one day!
p.s. Dad's 60th birthday.

Black Bean Soup!

Yummy Yum Yum!

I'm generally a fan of Black Bean soup so when I saw this recipe I knew I had to try it!  Especially when I realized it used chipotles!  
Something you may not know about me: I love spicy food!  
(Last week Jason & I ate at an Indian restaurant while we were in Cincinnati and they asked us how spicy we wanted our food on a scale of 1-6.  I didn't hesitate and said 6.  She looked at me like I was crazy so I said 5 would be fine.  Let's just say I definitely could have handled the 6.  I won't let anyone scare me away next time.)  
And my favorite pepper is chipotles!

So this soup looked like a perfect fit!

It was so easy and inexpensive.

Instead of using the homemade tortilla strips I whipped together some corn bread and had that with the soup instead.

Thanksgiving countdown

Hey Hey Hey Thanksgiving Day is 10 days away!

Who's excited?
Besides me!

I'm excited to see family and friends, hem my pants (sewing machine at my parents), celebrate my dad's birthday, go christmas tree hunting, decorate for christmas, see my parents' house after they did so much redecorating, 5k run with Karen, and much more... so excited.
But honestly, most of all, I'm ready for a break!

However, I have a lot going on between now and then so I'm still going to enjoy every step of the way.

On the topic of Thanksgiving, have you been participating in documenting one thing you're thankful for every day of November?  Many people seem to be participating on facebook & I know people who write something down everyday of the year that they're thankful for (or two or three or four...).  I've been making the effort to write down something I'm thankful for every day this month in my journal.  Maybe I can make it a habit and continue after November.  

Full Fall Funday

Saturday was such a fantastic day.  I got to do so many of my favorite things with many of my favorite people.
What else can you ask for?

The day started out beautifully.  I was so excited to get out in it and run.  I would have loved to run a 20 miler!  A couple things held me back.  
#1 my knee  My knee's been bothering me since Halloween.  I decided it's because my shoes are worn out (which they are).  I ordered a new pair and everything will be fine once I'm running in them.  Because I said so.
#2 I guess I didn't have enough time for a 20 miler anyway...

Then I headed off to a photography class.  We worked with natural light and it was AWESOME!  The first 15 minutes I was skeptical, but it quickly grew on me.  Although if I knew we would be posing for each other I may have fixed my hair before the class.  Oh well.
It was interesting how one of the girls who took my photo later showed me one and said, "I really like this one because I think it shows your personality…

Pumpkin Bread!

Who likes pumpkin right now?
It's hard to find someone who's not into pumpkin right now.

I wanted to make pumpkin bread when I got back from Cincinnati last night.

Mom & Dad bought me a cute little pumpkin for decoration about a month ago and I've been enjoying my little fall decoration.
I enjoyed it, but now it was time to use it for what it's meant to be used for!  No, pumpkins are not actually grown for decoration.  Surprise, surprise.

I went ahead and cut the pumpkin in half and baked it up so I didn't have to use canned pumpkin for my bread.

And my bread tastes SO good!  Dare I say the best pumpkin bread I've ever had...

Halloween Recap 2012

Do you like Halloween?
I mean I guess I sort-of do... I've never really gotten into it.  I just pretty much do enough to get by and I never buy anything.  Everything in my outfit always comes from my closet.
Saturday night I went to a friend's Halloween party, which was fun.  They set-up a photo booth...
After getting back to Chicago yesterday afternoon, I was so so so so so happy to see dry ground and the temperature that was the same as Cleveland felt 10 degrees warmer.  Wahoo!
Last night my friend & I went to the Halsted Street Parade, which I always love to watch.  We were a bit chilly, but stuck it out through the awards.  I didn't agree with the awards so I will give my own.
The Piñata (honestly I could only see the top half - a lot of people watch the parade - but it was awesome)Big Bird & the dog from Sesame Street.  I thought the idea was cute, but rather expected (they handed out Obama stickers as they walked along).  Then at the very end we saw the costume was…