Thursday, January 31, 2008

school shmool

I've been studying... studying.... studying... to try to catch up with my classes. Carlee went to the sitter's yesterday, and in 4 hours, I was only able to finish 2 chapters in my computer class (almost 3) and print out the science syllabus. It was then that I realized that my science class is not actually a self paced class like I thought it was. Nope. I've got 3 chapters of reading, labs, observations, and homework due by Sunday. Awesome. It has also turned out that neither class is going to be easy shmeesy like I had hoped. The computer class would be easy if I were in a face to face class, but since it's online, it uses this emulator and if you don't do things exactly the way it wants you to, then it's wrong, even though there are a ton of different ways to do the same thing. And the science class, well, I've never been really good at science, so to start with that doesn't help. The first chapter is nothing but physics and calculations and stuff I don't even know how to do. yay!

so this is why I still haven't gotten back to posting regularly yet. :)

Monday, January 28, 2008

green smoothie 2

Today's green smoothie was 1 orange, 1 kiwi fruit, and 1/2 cup of raw spinach. It was so good! Couldn't even notice the spinach, and the orange and kiwi went really well together. I'm loving these green smoothies. :)

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Seeing Green

I did two veggie firsts today....

Carlee and I shared our first Green Shake. I bought 3 bunches of spinach and kale (or something) at the market this week, in hopes of getting more greens in our diet. We really lack in the greens department... Well, I bought them on Friday, and I still don't know what I'm going to do with all of it. This afternoon, I came across an article on green shakes, and I thought it sounded like a tasty way to add some greens to my diet. You basically just make a shake with fruit and greens, so that the fruit taste is sweet, but you're still getting the nutrients from the greens. Mine was 1 apple, 1 pear, and 1/2 cup of fresh spinach. It was really good! I didn't even notice the spinach except my blender didn't get it as small as I would have liked, but the taste was awesome. Even Carlee liked it! :)

I also made seitan (wheat meat) from scratch today, using a recipe from Vegan Planet. Seitan is gluten, or the protein part of wheat. You make it by kneading whole wheat flour in a bowl of water to get all the starch out. You continuously change out the water every time it turns milky white, until it stays near clear. It forms a mass of thick dough-ey stuff. Then you break it into smaller pieces and simmer it for an hour in home made vegetable stock. After it's done cooking, you can put it in the fridge or freezer. Once you want to use it, just follow whatever seitan recipe you have. It took quite a while to make, and I don't even know how we're going to like it in recipes. But once I use it, I'll post an update. I do know, that if we do like it, making it will be a weekend project, and Tony will have to help, and we'll probably make 3 - 4 batches at once.

Now I need to figure out what Carlee and I are going to have for dinner. :)

Edit: I looked pictures up on Google, and I have swiss chard, not kale... lol. And I found some nutritional info on Seitan (on the net): for 4 oz it has 31 grams of protein!!! and 157 calories. It has more protein than tofu. Not bad. :)


Carlee loves stickers...

no, seriously. She's obsessed with them.

And yesterday she went to a birthday party and got four sheets of the boogers in her party bag. Needless to say they are everywhere. On my face as I type this, on the couch, the floor, her feet.


Thursday, January 24, 2008

the coin knows all....

Last night we flipped a coin to see if we should have another baby....

It was tails.

If it's not one thing....

It's another...

My friend went ahead and took Carlee yesterday since it seemed that it was her allergies acting up again. I gave her allergy medicine and she felt better within a half hour. So, for the first free hour, I ran up to a friend's house who was having a MOMS Club scrapbooking day (I had forgotten I'd told her I would come.) I couldn't just not go, could I? hehe. But I only stayed for about an hour, then headed home.

I got one chapter read in a good time, then logged on to the site to take the test. I was thinking, "this is great! I already got one chapter down, I'll take the test, then I'll knock out chapter two! All before having to pick up Carlee!"

Well, the next 2 and a half hours I spent trying to figure out why I could not take the test. I downloaded everything that the class said to, the CD that came with the book, Internet Explorer (which I hate,) and all the pluggins they required. And the stupid site would still not work. Well, the site worked, but when I tried to open the test it would freeze. Then, after a while, I got a message saying, "You've reached maximum attempts on this test." WITHOUT ANSWERING A SINGLE QUESTION!!!


So, I was pissed. Emailed my teacher. I don't know whether it's my laptop freaking out, or my internet connection or what. We're borrowing a second laptop from a friend right now, until Tony's new one gets in (yes he's getting ANOTHER new computer,) so I'm going to ask if I can install my stuff on his and see if it works or not. I hope it does, because I'd really like to get done with this class.

I went to go pick Carlee up from N's house, and she said, "Oh Carlee had a great day, she was really good. No problems." Great. I ask Carlee to get her socks and shoes, and she runs from me. I get the socks and start putting them on her, and she grabs a book and throws it at me. Yeah, so much for being good, guess it's only when I'm not around.


Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Resolutions.... sorta

Wow, so I really haven't been posting, have I? I can't even use the excuse that I've been studying, because I haven't. My class started a week and a half ago, and I still haven't started. Thank goodness it's self paced. I was going to start sending Carlee to a friend's at home day care 1 - 2 times a week for a few hours so that I can study. I kept putting off the decision, until I realized (while I was reading my text book in the middle of making dinner) that, yeah, this really wasn't going to work. hah. Today was supposed to be her first day, but now she's sick. Awesome.

I went to a Women's Bible Study last night. It was the first religious thing I've done in years. Last night was just the introduction and get to know each other day, and learn how the study is going to go. I'm really excited about it. Ever since I can remember, I've always been about self improvement. What could I be doing better? What can I do to be a better person? etc. Always working on the next thing. And right now, I'm so happy with myself except for two areas: spirituality and fitness.

For fitness, I am starting to work out again. I'm not trying to lose weight, I'm doing the opposite in fact. I want to gain weight, in muscle anyway. :) I've also started going back to pilates, which I'm loving. And I want to start running again. Last fall I was finally able to run a mile without stopping (which was a HUGE goal accomplished for me) and now I'm afraid I wouldn't make it to the end of my driveway. So, I hope to start working on that soon as well.

I'm also really excited about getting more active in the AR area. My friend G and I were talking about somehow showing a screening of I Am An Animal on base. She made a few calls and we've got a representative talking about it at a meeting today, to see if we'll be able to show it at the main base's theater. Which would be freakin awesome. It was a great documentary, and it was done by HBO so it's not biased or anything. Just the facts (good and what some think as bad) about Peta, Ingrid, and the animal rights movement. It doesn't just cover food animals either, but pets, and lab animals as well. It was a really good and informative documentary. Everyone could learn from it, whether they're for Peta or against it.

So I guess these are sort of my new year's resolutions. Kinda. But then again, I've constantly got new resolutions to accomplish. That's just how I am. :)

Saturday, January 12, 2008

what's new...

*We turned Carlee's crib into a toddler daybed... (sniff sniff) And we put all her toys upstairs, as she's old enough now (I guess) to not have to play downstairs all the time. She is loving the independence, and it's showing through her newfound level of stubbornness towards me.

*My two next classes start this month. I'm taking a (hopefully) easy shmeesy computer class and a (hopefully) easy shmeesy science class. We shall see. All I need is stupid English Lit (which I was planning on taking this semester too, but every single one of the classes was filled up when I went to register, and yes I was trying to register really early!) ugh. So yeah, I need English Lit, and two language credits, but I'm hoping to clep out of Span 1 & 2 when I go home for my next visit. Then I will be done with my Associate's of Business Administration. I had originally planned on immediately starting on my bachelor's but instead, I'm going to get a second associate's in Social Sciences (I will only need 6 new classes). Then I will decide what I want to get my bachelor's in: accounting, economics, or anthropology, all of which interest me very much.

*I've finally got Tony convinced to go back to school as well! He's only 11 classes away from his associate's!

*I'm feeling 100% better after the kidney infection, and I'm off my antibiotics, and I hope to never have another one of those again. I will be drinking cranberry juice every so often from now on, believe you me.

*I found this awesome site: I've been using it for about a week and a half, and I love it. I originally started using it to make sure I was getting all the vitamins and nutrients that I needed. Which I was pretty sure I was, because I feel great, but just wanted to be on the safe side. And now I've fallen in love with the site. LOL. It's awesome to see exactly what nutrients I need to try harder to get, what percentage of my calories come from where, etc. It's a very nifty site.

*I know I haven't gotten around to calling everyone yet, but thank you so much for all the Christmas gifts and cards! We really appreciate and love everything so much! So, thank you. :)

*There's more new stuff, but I'll write more later, because it's late and I'm going to bed.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Rome Post... Finally!

Like I said, our trip to Rome could have been a little better. I was pretty much not feeling good from day 1 and soon after, I was in pain the rest of the time. So, poor Tony had to deal with Carlee the entire time, AND deal with me. He was great though. So, we didn't take too many pictures, and a lot of the ones we took (especially in St. Peter's Basilica) came out really dark.

We flew into Rome on Saturday the 22nd, and immediately started touring. The first day we took a Church tour on the bus. We first went to Church of St. Paul. I loved the front of this church. You can't really see it in the pictures, but the background of the paintings were this shimmering gold. It was so awesome.
We were amazed at the sight of statues like this one. I mean seriously, how do they get stone to look like flesh or fabric? It was so awesome to see.
On Sunday, we hit the Coliseum and the ancient Roman ruins nearby. We also saw some other sites, including some churches and the Pantheon. I think this was honestly my favorite tour. It was so awesome to walk through the ruins, and the Coliseum is so enormous and incredible. It helped that I was only mildly feeling bad by then, the pain was still tolerable.

(if I remember right) This is the arch of Constantine, and everything was recycled from other places to make it.

Where Julius Caesar was actually murdered. It's now become the local cat haven. :)
Monday we toured the Vatican. We stood in line F..O..R..E..V..E..R.. to get to the museum. I was feeling horrible from the start of the day. I probably should have stayed at the hotel, but I didn't want to miss it. Honestly, I didn't enjoy the museum at all. Not one bit. Why? Well, for one I was hurting. Two, we stood in line for hours before finally making it in, and then the people who were shoving in line for those few hours were still shoving and hurrying through the museum. So imagine being shoulder to shoulder with people (who aren't in your tour group) forcing you to go faster than you want and being hit and shoved (which each time it happened sent a sharp pain through your back,) not letting you look at anything for more than 2 seconds. It sucked. After making it through the museum like a huge pack of fish trying to make it up a tiny stream, we arrived at the Sistine Chapel, which was even more packed with people, shoving you around. Never again, no thank you, I'll buy a book and actually enjoy the paintings.

I don't have any pictures of the museum, because cameras were not allowed, but here is the line we were standing in. Triple this, because as soon as we turned that corner in the middle of the picture, it was this long all over again, and when we took this picture, we had just waited through a portion of line that was this long as well. And the tour guide said this was a normal line. Awesome.
After the Vatican Museum and the Sistine Chapel, we went to St. Peter's Basilica. I really wish I had been feeling better, because I would have liked to enjoy the Basilica more. If I go back to Rome, I'm definitely going back to it. It is enormous, and so beautiful and elaborate. Did I mention it was huge? I wish more of our pictures would have come out better, but it was so dark.

St. Peter's Basilica is filled with so many beautiful statues. I hoping on finding a book on St. Peter's and hopefully see what everything was and meant, because I couldn't concentrate much on what the tour guide was saying. Neither could Tony as he was trying to keep Carlee happy; she decided to act up at this point.
The reason you can take as many pictures as you want in the Basilica: the "paintings" are actually all mosaics. It's incredible! I couldn't believe it until I got up close to this one:
A view of the Vatican after coming out of St. Peter's Basilica. I had to go get Carlee's stroller from where they made me check it in, so I missed where the tour guide said the Pope lives. :(
And those are our best pictures. After leaving the Vatican we went to a little gift shop, where Carlee couldn't touch ANYTHING! haha. Then we headed back to the hotel on the city bus. The city bus is an adventure all on its own, it was constantly packed. The first time we had used it before, we got on it toward the middle of the bus run and were crammed in by the door. Each time the door opened, Tony and Carlee were flung around, and this poor Italian kid kept trying not to be pinched by the door's spring. This time, however, we got on at the very beginning of the run, so we were able to get seats. We went to the hotel, Tony and Carlee rested up, while I tried to, but only went downhill.

We were supposed to be going to Christmas Eve dinner at the hotel's restaurant at 7 pm and then, we were supposed to head to Midnight Mass at 9 pm. Neither happened, because at 6:30 pm I was in so much pain we had to call a cab to the ER. And from then on, the last two days (our free days) I spent taking pain killers 3 more times than I was supposed to, and waiting for Wednesday, when we would head home.

And that, ladies and gentlemen was our trip to Rome. :)

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

ER Take 2

I know it's taking me forever to get to my Rome post... today, I'm finally feeling better. I'm still not 100% but definitely feeling better. I actually had to go back to the ER, early Friday morning after a full night of nausea/vomiting and no sleep whatsoever. I was so dehydrated they took over 5 tries to finally get an IV in. I was promptly admitted to the hospital, my first ever unplanned stay in the hospital. Friday passed by fast, as I was catching up on much needed sleep. By Saturday though, I felt good enough to not be stuck in the hospital bed, and wanted to go home. They made me wait all day though.

So, I've been recouping here at home now. Tony just went back to work this morning, so I had a nice relaxing chance to get better. So, I promise, my Rome post will be coming soon. I need to go through my pictures and figure out what's what.