• Spring has Sprung
    Health & Exercise,  Outdoors,  Projects,  Retirement

    Spring Has (Finally) Sprung!!!

    Spring has finally arrived in Iowa!!  I hope it’s here to stay.  My post today is about four things that don’t warrant separate posts but all tie to it finally being spring. Seed Starter Update It’s been two weeks since my last update and overall, I’m happy to say I’ve had some success.  Initially, things looked VERY good.  Everything sprouted quickly.  But then a few of the sprouts fizzled out.  I’ve had the most success with the Morning Glory which is what I especially wanted to start early. I finally got my new waterproof labels.  I’m starting to use them as I transfer the sprouts to larger pots.  As I also…

  • working
    Life in General,  Retirement

    What I Don’t Miss About Working

    I’ve been retired for two years now and I couldn’t be happier.   There are days when I stop and think, I am so lucky.  I finally get to spend my time the way I want to.  Well, mostly.  I do still have to do laundry, clean the house, and other assorted chores.  But at least I’m not working and trying to fit all that in too. As I ponder my former working life, I can’t help but think about the things I don’t miss.  I celebrated some of these when I did them for the last time.  There was such a sense of freedom in knowing I wouldn’t have to…

  • my birthday
    Life in General

    Happy Birthday. . . to ME!!!

    There are many milestone birthdays in our lives: 13 (finally a teenager) 16 (a driver’s license) 21 (legal age, although when I was growing up the legal age for drinking was 18) 30, 40, 50, 60 (celebrating another decade) 65 (Medicare) 66 and 4 months (full retirement age, for me anyway) 70 (highest social security payout) 70 1/2 (required minimum distribution age) 80, 90, etc. I have a milestone birthday of sorts this month.  I will be 62.  Technically, I could begin receiving social security payments.  But I won’t.  There’s no reason not to let it accumulate until I can get a higher amount.  So I guess it’s not a…

  • little about a lot
    Life in General

    A Little about a Lot

    As you go about your day, do odd things pop into your head?  I’ve been accumulating my random thoughts and decided to name the post “A Little about a Lot”.  It may not really be a lot, but that sounded like a good title for what this is.  None of these is post worthy alone, but I have to think you might share some of these thoughts. Anyway, these are not organized into any type of order.  They are just listed in the order they came into my head.  Do you have some to share? A Little about a Lot I cringe every year when right before the girls’ state…

  • sugar cookies
    Cookies,  In the Kitchen

    Sugar Cookies

    The first time I spent the holidays with Tim’s kids, I made these sugar cookies.  Little did I know, his son in law is a big lover of sugar cookies.  But they have to be good ones.  And mine passed the test. There’s nothing like a homemade sugar cookie, especially if you make the frosting as well.  And finding the right recipe is the key.  Once I found this one, I stopped looking and I’ve been making them ever since. I get requests It’s almost become expected that I’ll have these cookies for special occasions.  And, occasionally, I’ll get a special request.  One night, I received a video through a…

  • exercise
    Health & Exercise

    My Love/Hate Relationship with Exercise

    Do you know that great feeling you get when you’ve finished something you were dreading?  That’s how I feel after exercise.  I’m glad when it’s done. Exercise is not something I naturally enjoy.  Most of the time, I have to force myself to do it.  I’ve never achieved the endorphin state where you feel euphoric and almost become addicted to that feeling.  Nope.  Hasn’t happened to me AT ALL. OK, that’s the hate part of this.  What do I love?  Well, as stated above, I love when it’s finished.  But I also love the feeling of accomplishment that comes with a good walk.  (Walking is my current form of exercise.) …

  • starting seeds
    Outdoors,  Projects

    Starting Seeds Indoors – Starting Over

    I said I’d give you an update on my seeds after a couple of weeks.  Earlier this week, I didn’t think it would be a positive update but I was taken by surprise this morning. What happened to my seeds? I don’t know exactly what happened.  My seeds started out fine but then they fizzled.  If you recall from my previous post, I started using a heat mat because I thought the seeds were too cold.  It’s been chilly these last two weeks and the location of the seeds makes them susceptible to the cold, even with the mat. So, our best guess is they were simply too cold.  And…

  • REAL ID
    Life in General

    Getting my REAL ID

    I need to renew my driver’s license this month.  In February, I got a postcard in the mail reminding me.  I don’t recall ever getting a reminder before. Since I didn’t need to renew until April, I put the postcard on my bulletin board and made a note in my planner to look at it again when we got back from our March vacation. Renewing my driver’s license online I discovered I could renew online and assumed that’s what I would do.   I checked to see if I was eligible and I am.  Evidently, you can only renew online every other time.  No big deal.  It would save me…

  • table runner
    Projects,  Sewing

    Making a Table Runner

    A couple weeks ago, I posted about the three pillow covers I made.  I mentioned I was also going to create a matching table runner for our coffee table.  Well, I finished it. And I think it turned out pretty great!!   (Just don’t look too closely.) My goal was to use the same colors in the table runner, so it would coordinate with the pillows in our family room downstairs.  And I accomplished my goal. Simple pattern I found a very simple pattern, but could have just as easily made it without a pattern.  I liked the fact that the pattern produced a skinny table runner.  I wasn’t looking…

  • chicken pasta
    In the Kitchen,  Pasta

    Penne and Chicken with Spiced Tomato Sauce

    I discovered this chicken pasta recipe years ago in the Cooking Light magazine.  I love that magazine and have found several great recipes in it.  Once I get it each month, I go through it and tear out the recipes that look good to me.  Over time, I’ll pull out my stash and pick something new to try.  This one is a keeper. It’s so easy to make yet tastes like something you’d find in a fine dining restaurant.  I’ve always kidded that this is equal to or better than anything I can get at Biaggi’s. I’ve made three minor adjustments, which I’ve noted in the recipe. 1 – the…