Saturday, July 31, 2010

New Recipes I've made lately!

So I have been trying to cook from scratch more and more, and in doing so I find myself experimenting with new flavors and and attempting recipes I would normally shy away from. I am a fan of potato salad, and generally never stray too far from the traditional. Well, I found this recipe on Allrecipes.com and was intrigued enough to try it! I put it all together Thursday night and it turned out wonderfully. :D I was delighted by the way new new flavors mingled and were brought together! Give it a try some day and let me know what you think.

Beaumont Potato Salad

* 5 pounds red potatoes (I only had 3 pounds)
* 1 (.7 ounce) package dry Italian salad dressing mix such as Good Seasons®
* 1/4 cup tarragon vinegar (I used pickle juice)
* 1/4 cup water
* 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil (I only used 1/2 cup)
* 1/2 cup chopped celery
* 1 cup real bacon bits (I used about 1/2 cup)
* 1/4 cup chopped dill pickle (optional, but I put them in since I was already using pickle juice!)
* 1/4 cup chopped green onion
* 3 cups mayonnaise (I only used 1.5 cups)

Directions
1. Place the potatoes into a large pot and cover with water. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until tender, about 20 minutes. Drain and allow to steam dry for a minute or two.
2. In a bowl, whisk together the dry Italian dressing mix, tarragon vinegar, water, and olive oil until thoroughly blended. Set aside.
3. Place the hot potatoes into a large bowl, and roughly but thoroughly slice them with a table knife until the potatoes are in chunks. Pour the dressing mixture over the hot potatoes, toss to coat, and let the potatoes cool. Add the celery, bacon bits, dill pickle, and green onion to the potatoes; lightly stir in mayonnaise until all ingredients are well combined, and serve.

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And on to even more great cooking! This one I made tonight and cannnnnnnnnot wait till tomorrow to have some!

This is a VERY yummy dessert that my friend made and I had to have the recipe. I was shocked to find out it is vegan (no dairy) and naturally sweetened! So for everyone out there that is looking for a healthier option in place of desserts chock full of processed sugar, than this one may help out your cooking repertoire! Again, all props go to my BFF forever Sarah! :D

Chocolate Mousse

2 cups almond milk
1/2 cup of dates *cut dates in half lengthwise to check for pits first!*
1/2 cup of blue agave nectar
1/4 cup + 2 tbls cocoa powder
2 tsp vanilla
1/8 tsp salt
3 tbls lecithin *not common in most grocery stores, I found mine in a Health/GNC store*
1/2 cup coconut butter or oil (liquid form) *warm in sun, or a pan of hot water*

*This uses a blender! Apparently a Vitamix blender works best, but since I only have a small 4 cup blender, I was recommended to soak the dates in almond milk for about 30 minutes.*

Add almond milk, dates, agave nectar, cocoa powder, vanilla and salt to the blender. Blend well until dates are smooth and creamy. With blender running, add the lecithin and then the coconut oil. Blend well. Pour into a 9" square pan and refrigerate several hours or overnight. ENJOY!

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Sorry I'm not a hardcore food blogger with pictures of every step, but I don't have a camera at all, and am not at a place in my financial life where I can afford one either!

Again, I would love to know if anyone else out there tries these and likes them! Love ya all :D

Sunday, June 27, 2010

My Apology

I am at a loss today. Things have been really wonderful the last few days, and all of a sudden my husband and I are arguing over silly stuff. I don't know why, but I am also emotional. This weepiness is very strange for me as I usually am not hormonal at this stage of my cycle. And, I don't usually cry unless something very emotional has actually happened to me. (In fact, I have been accused of having a heart of ice by more than one person!) Back to the argument. What it came down to was: we revert easily into offensive and defensive roles. Part of the reason why we have been so defensive with each other is the fact that my husband has been making most of the 'personality' sacrifices in our marriage. I have been bending him around my world more than I have been trying to fit into his world. Without even intentionally trying, I have sucked much of who he is at the core out of him. He, in an effort to curb arguments has stepped down from his natural tendencies and agrees with my logic regardless if I am 100% right or not. My world is pretty relaxed and I'm not offended easily. So I assume that most people would benefit from that kind of environment and perspective. I have encouraged Adam to be more like me instead of letting him be who he is. And let me tell you, I LOVE WHO HE IS!

I love his quirkiness and his oddness. I love when he plays like a child and when he blows me away with his mature insight. I love how he is so compassionate and caring when I feel even slightly ill. I love how sensitive he is especially when we watch sappy movies. So why on earth have I been trying to change him? Just because there are times when he gets offended at the stupidity of his co-workers? I should be excited to see him in action. I should let him be.

I guess this is my way of letting you know that I understand what you are trying to say to me, Adam. I am sorry for encouraging you to be more like myself. I am not perfect, and I have no basis on which to say my way is better than yours. Forgive me. Regardless of what you may think, I have TOTALLY enjoyed the last 3 years of marriage with you. I would not trade my time with you for ANYTHING. With God as my witness, I love you and could not ask for a better soul mate. I hope I can be 1/2 as good to you as you are to me. I am looking forward to our next 100 years together! Yes... 100 physical years! ;)

I love you.

Friday, April 30, 2010

I wonder sometimes...

I think about things differently than I did a few years ago... do all of us go through certain stages of thought as we get older, or is it just me? Are my epiphanies original, or have all of you readers (ha) thought of them already yourselves? If we all follow a similar path throughout life, what really makes us better than others? Because, I'll admit it.. its easy to give ourselves full credit, total benefit of the doubt, and act like WE are the main reason the earth still rotates. Is life only about our own personal journey, and noone elses journey matters, or are we just a small piece of the puzzle that God is putting together?

Some religions even go so far as to say that the only reality is your own. You cannot really hurt others because existence is only in your mind. Everyone else on this earth is here for your personal amusement. As I observe people, I ponder if they truely are just a figment of my imagination, or perhap maybe I am a figment of their imagination. If that religion ends up being true, than I am one sick and twisted person. I have imagined so much pain, and unfairness, and montrosities into this world... I have not even given myself a chance to live the standard of life that I 'imagined' to be the ultimate goal (financially stable, nice house, healthy family, ect.) How sad would that be if it was true! I must think I don't even deserve to imagine myself into a stressless lifestyle. All I can do is sit back and let my unfair imagination/reality slowly drive me batty. Oh, but in that religion I once we realize.... ACTUALLY realize this enlightening truth, then *poof*... it all dissappears..... I haven't seen or heard any poofs lately! ha ha I have more to say on this last statement, but that is a thought for another post.

Personally, I think it is absurd to think that the millions of people who live full, happy, sad, strange, wonderful lives... people I have never met, yet are out there breathing, laughing crying, cooking, shopping, and simply 'living' ...to think they have no purpose and may not even exist because life is only about me.

huh

my head hurts

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

1 week

HI!




That is really the gist of what I wanted to say. I also wanted you all to know that my birthday is next week. Oh, and I am happy!

Love always,
Aaronne

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

I'm alive

I'm just horrible at sitting down to write whats on my mind. I think I am a lot more introspective than I used to admit. AND having lots of extra time on my hands, I have been reading, thinking and praying more. I get many epiphanies, and wow thoughts, but I just savor them, and move on.. I always forget to write them down. Does that make me unorganized? Maybe flighty? Half the time I cannot even remember them to tell my husband. haha

We got furniture! HOOORAY :D I am very excited that our little apartment looks homey. We are having to be exceptionally frugal, thus purchasing luxury items such as dressers and a coffee table are on the budget WAYYYY in the future. Having an awesome God who is my provider.. we got those items for free! Well, we did pay our friends $30 for the coffee and end tables... but all the other stuff we were blessed with. Amen, I love Jesus!!

Also! I finally got a job.. part-time and temporary as it is. I will be working with the 2010 census in our area. I am still hoping and praying for Adam or I to find a nice job that pays enough for us to thrive a little here, and offers benefits. We would love to start a family, but would not be able to do it on the wages we earn at the moment. The thought of having to put my newborn in daycare saddens me. Soooo, until we have something a bit more solid.... ;)

Sunday, November 15, 2009

The Coast

Wow, So a lot has happened in the past few months. Adam and I were getting nowhere looking for jobs online. After a lot of prayer we thought maybe we should take a step of faith and just go.... somewhere.... anywhere...

We made a list of apartments to look at on the central coast of California as well as a few places to drop off resumes... well as we were looking at (mostly nasty) apartments, Adam gets a call from a place he had dropped off an application 30 minutes prior, asking him if he could come in and interview! So back we went, and he interviewed and then they asked if he could come back in an hour for a second interview!!! We were thrilled. Anyways, By the end of the day he had a job offer and paperwork to get fingerprinted! I'm telling you, faith works!

The next morning he goes and does the fingerprinting, and we head back to the mountain to start packing!!! This was July 10th. We had seen a few apartments, none we were super thrilled about, but since we needed a place to live, we put in applications. One of the nicer places within walking distance to Adams new job had JUST leased that apartment to someone else. Slightly discouraged, we referred to our second choice..which really was not what we wanted, but we were getting desperate. Fortunately, I noticed on the sheet of available properties this particular company managed, that there were a few apartments on the list in our price range we hadn't looked at. I looked at where they were on a map in relation to Adam's work, and saw that one was within 1/2 a mile! I went ahead and put it on the list with our other choice and sent the application in. Adam started work July the 13th.. I drove him back to the coast gave him a map and wished him luck as we had not heard if we were approved for an apartment yet. We did go look at the place on our application that we hadn't seen, and it was MUCH bigger than ALL of the other places in our price range. EXCEPT, that the carpet was very, very, very nasty.

I headed back to the mountain to finish packing. On the way, I got a call saying we were approved!!!! AMEN :D The agent asked which property we would like, and I said that we liked the extra room (if you saw the trailer we were living in prior, you would understand) in the apartment we had just seen, but it needed a cleaning. She said that if we picked that one, we would not be able to move in for another 2-3 days because they hadn't sent over their professional cleaner yet. So, without seeing it in prime condition, we chose the bigger apartment. Not being able to move in right away made Adam a hobo for a few nights! He ended up sleeping on the small couch in my brother's VERY small apartment a few blocks away. I packed like a madwoman, and loaded everything onto a small trailer that my dad had volunteered to drive over for me.

Less than a week after we took a step of faith, we had an income, a roof over our heads and a new adventure ahead!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Looking for work... along with the rest of the unemployed

So, I sit here with some extra time on my hands... primarily because I have no job. I don't know if it is just me, or if many Americans are dealing with this same issue. But, I cannot get a job. Every time I get called to an interview, they end up picking someone else. When I take a test to be considered for a job, and ACE the test, I am still overlooked for an interview. Usually, prospective employers look at my application and just send me a neat little rejection letter, and sometimes they don't even bother with that small respect for their applicants. I cannot say if it is because of my work history, or the Bachelor degree I hold, or the community I live in, or the fact that I have red hair, but I am unwanted in the 'real' work force of this so called great country. Yet, all the employers I have worked for and employees I have worked with have nothing but good things to say about me. I know I work hard... I know I learn quick... I know I would be an amazing asset in MANY different jobs and environments, yet even the jobs that would be PERFECT for me, they choose another.

I assume that because many people are hurting for jobs the competition for employment is extremely competitive. I would have just hoped that out of the (literally) 300+ applications I have filled out, one employer would have been interested in me by now. But still, after 6 months of actively looking, I am unemployed, living with my parents, and am losing hope that my husband and I will ever have our own place.

My husband is not faring any better than I either. We do not believe in debt, and as such it has been hard for him to complete his degree. He has been taking almost full-time online classes and working minimum wage jobs as much as possible as well. We would love to start a family soon, but since we cannot get more than a basic minimum wage job (even with my degree) we have no health insurance and do not feel comfortable taking on a child as well.

If anyone has any ideas, or better yet, a JOB please let me know. We have looked for jobs on craigslist, usajobs, newspapers, chamber of commerce, word-of-mouth, company websites, all over the country. From California to New York, down to Texas and up to Colorado. Now, I do have a small safety net of a seasonal employment, but I would reall like to get something with benefits, and a competitive salary that would allow us to get out of living on a trailer on my parent's property with no running water, no heat, no air, and marginal electricity. We don't care where we move to, as long as we have a job that pays the bills and lets us save for our own home.

Sigh............................................................ Come on America, USE MY TALENT.......... I am organized, efficient, detailed, competent, professional, friendly, happy, and work well with so many types of personalities.

Some upsides about being unemployed, are that I get to spend lots of with my beloved and awesome husband. (Isn't he handsome!!!)


The California unemployment gives us enough to pay cost of living bills so we are surviving. I am not as exausted as I used to be commuting 1-2 hours each way to the very draining seasonal job. I get to get my life organized. AND, I live on a beautiful mountain.

I know my life is not so bad. I have a lot of things that many people would love to have. I have time with my family, I don't deal with the grind of city life, and I love my life!

But still, I would love a job!

Thanks for reading my feelings and rantings :)