Author Archives: Jean

Happy Homemaker Monday, Turkey Week!

Happy Thanksgiving Week!  It’s going to be a short but busy week around here.

Do you have big Thanksgiving plans?  We’re not hosting but I decided to do a full on house-cleaning any way.  It’s much-needed.

I’m thankful as always to be joining in with Sandra over at Diary Of A Stay At Home Mom for the weekly Happy Homemaker Monday link-up.  These posts certainly help keep me on track.

Breakfast Time…what is on the plate this morning

Woke up to yesterday’s Chinese food feuding with my tummy so I didn’t eat for quite a while.  Just had a Chobani Flip Yogurt, a banana flavored one.  Hoping my minimal coffee drinking doesn’t cause a huge headache later.

Right Now I Am

Sitting down to write out this post, thinking I may need to try a another cup of coffee, letting the mildew cleaner do its thing in the bathroom, and letting the washer and dryer do their thing with a couple of loads of laundry.

The Weather Outside

WINDY! It’s supposed to be a warm week, 60s this afternoon, not quite as warm tomorrow (our weather is always back and forth), 55 and sunny on Thanksgiving.  Almost 70 on Friday.

Looking Around The House

I’m just in the mood to clean.  It really doesn’t look awful but my mood is one where I’m sick of everything and want it to be a bit less chaotic.  I know I need to do a huge de-cluttering project to even get started bringing the house to the place I want and at this point, need it to be.  A project for 2018 may be calling my name.

On Today’s To-Do List

Oddly, after waking up sick, I came back from the school run, motivated to get things done. Fridge and Freezer Clean Out

  1. Clean Out Pantry
  2. Clear out fridge and freezer
  3. Clean Shower In Main Bathroom With Heavy Duty Mildew Cleaner (Love the Method stuff but sometimes you need to bring out the big guns for the truly nasty jobs)
  4. Wash all bedding (In process)
  5. Pay rest of bills
  6. Clear off my dresser
  7. Clean out cat box (may postpone until tomorrow morning as that’s trash day)
  8. Clean off this desk
  9. Make a list for what I want to do in the house
  10. Go back to grocery store.  Oh what a comedy of errors!  Couldn’t find my deli meat (small purchase due to short week) so went back to store at 9p.m. last night, got refund.  Returned home and realized it was in the bottom of the ONE sack I didn’t think to check.  So now, I have to go give them their money back.

Currently Reading

May continue to trudge along through Captivology but will more likely return it unfinished. I did read and really enjoy Warcross by Marie Lu over the weekend.  Have the first novel in the Sigma Force series by James Rollins on order.

On The TV Today

No idea.  If I watch anything today, it will likely be the new (to Netflix) episodes of The Great British Baking Show Season 4 or maybe a couple of shows on my CW app on the phone.  I did miss The Flash last week and G hooked me on Riverdale so now I need to catch up on the latest season of that.

On The Menu This Week

Benefit of a shorter week, less menu planning.

MONDAY: Spaghetti, meatballs, garlic bread, and salad.  By request.

TUESDAY: Pancakes and bacon.  Or I may make them eat French toast from the freezer.  I’ll be baking pies.  Caramel Apple and Chocolate.

WEDNESDAY: With Family

THURSDAY: Thanksgiving!

FRIDAY: Thanksgiving leftovers

If I Have A Few Minutes To Myself, I will

Try to sneak over to a local nature center and take some pictures of the wild turkeys that visit their bird feeders.  Or just breathe!

New Recipe I Tried Or Want To Try This Week

Found some whipped cream cheese in the fridge that we need to eat by Saturday.  Looking for a recipe to use it.  Any suggestions?

Looking Forward To This Week

Thanksgiving, a break in our schedules, spending time together

Favorite Photo From The Camera

Took way too many photos at the park on Thursday! Here are few more: I was a bit late, this drive (or walk) was so much prettier just a week or two before…

Quote(s) For The Week

Current Mood: The most effective way to do it, is to do it. (Amelia Earhart)

For Thanksgiving:


Do you have a busy week planned?


Duck, Duck, Robin

I’m a little late with my Saturday bird-watching post but still wanted to share my duck pictures.  I saw ducks plus a few other birds on my walk Thursday.

Happily, I walked down to the lake to see if any birds were present.  Lately, as I drive by the park, no birds appear in my view from the highway and side roads.

When I walked down to the small fishing dock near the playground, I saw lots of ducks near the shore.  duck

The sunny day meant changing my angle to get photos where the sunlight glare didn’t bounce off the water: duck Still not complaining about warm and bright November sunshine after too many days of gloomy gray skies!

Some of the ducks on the shore were still sleepy.  duck

Other ducks swam in the water. duck

This duck (My duck-naming knowledge stops with mallards) hung out apart from the other groups.  Is he something else? duck There were geese, just not in the water. duck Canada geese are year-long residents of our area and sometimes considered nuisance birds.  They did get in the water later when I was on the far side of the lake.


Bass Pro Shop is the anchor of Water Fall Park, location of these pictures


There were more ducks on the other side of the shore.  This mallard thinking of testing the waters made me smile. duck duck He finally went to join his friends. duck And the robin: duck duck duck

At the park, I also noticed snowbirds, a hawk (too far away to identify), crows, more robins, and a few woodpeckers.  My usual feathered friends were hanging out around our yard: cardinals, snowbirds, sparrows, and a downy woodpecker.  It’s also the time of year when Starlings gather on the power lines.  Can’t help but notice those.

Linking my post up with the Bird D’Pot.  What birds did you notice?

Nature Break For Five On Friday

Let’s take a nature break for today’s Five on Friday.

Still fall around here.  The stressful time of year has fully arrived.

Sometimes, I need a break from the stress.  Even good things bring a bit of stress at times.  Seems I just can’t stop embracing our fall scenery (Look what that 31 days series did to me! Made me appreciate fall a tiny bit.).

Most of these photos will be from my walk yesterday when I took Nathaniel Hawthorne’s advice to not waste the autumnal sunshine.  Good thing because today is once again gray and gloomy outside.

An Autumn Nature Break

One: Leaves Carpeting The Neighborhood

J grudgingly agreed to walk around the block with me last Saturday.  Neither one of us could resist the urge to crunch and stomp through the leaves on the street.  nature break

The strong fall winds even blew some of the still green leaves to the street.  nature break Bare trees mixed in with those still holding their leaves at the end of the block. nature break We have a soft and crunchy yellow carpet covering our front yard. nature break

Two: Leaves On The Neighborhood Trees

A few brave leaves cling bravely to their trees despite our cold, windy days.  nature break nature break nature break

Three: Sunny Day At The Park

nature break

Nature break

Sun flare practice

Four: It’s A Bird! It’s A… Nature Break Plane! However, The birds were there just not in the sky.

Nature break

More photos of my duck friends coming soon

Five: The Waterfall

The park’s waterfall (and namesake) is actually man-made and they turn it off and on.  It’s been off lately, I guess for maintenance?  However, the waterfalls were both going strong yesterday.

Nature break

The small waterfall.

Nature break

The larger “show piece” water fall

Nature break These little flowers are growing in the rocks beside the bigger waterfall. Nature break Thanks for taking a nature break with me today and putting up with inability to pare down my photos to just five.  Nature break

Don’t forget to hop over to our host, the F.A.S.T. blog and check out all the other bloggers linking up for Five on Friday!


Stocking Stuffer Secrets

For  today’s Tiny Tip on A  Thursday, I’m going to share my stocking stuffer secrets with you.

And yes, I’m talking about Christmas prior to Thanksgiving.  I don’t know if it was the whole embracing fall for 31 days thing but I’m thinking about Christmas already.

stocking stuffer

Photo credit: Melalouise via Flckr

Here are my stocking stuffer secrets:

  • Start early!  Usually in October but sometimes sooner, I start looking for small items for stockings whenever I’m out at a store.  It helps to ask to have whatever you pick out put in a separate bag.
  • Have a designated spot for storing them.  One of my dresser drawers serves this function.  It’s in the same row as my underwear drawer so I don’t really worry about any boys snooping in there.
  • In addition to searching out fun things, stick to a few standard items each year to cut down on some of the stress of filling the stockings.  Some of our Santa standard items: Chap-stick, gum, spin toothbrushes, bubble bath/cologne now that the boys are older (My mom used to fill my stocking with perfume samples and I always loved it.  It’s a bit harder to find men’s cologne samples but I did find a couple for the upcoming year), and of course, bags of favorite candy (Bags take up more space than those cute holiday suckers.).
  • Every year I have this plan where I stash the fun items in the drawer and then, I go out usually on Christmas Eve and panic that I don’t have enough to fill those stockings! Guess what? Usually I end up with too much.  So, other than candy and gum, I put some items back in the drawer and save for upcoming holidays and birthdays.  Sometimes items last all the way to the next Christmas.

Right now, I’m a bit behind on the stocking stuffer drawer although I do have the Chap-stick (peppermint!) and cologne samples in there.  I’m finding it a bit harder to come up with fun ideas as the boys get older.

And I refuse to go with my husband’s “just give them underwear and candy!” suggestion.  So, I’m open to any stocking stuffer ideas for two teenage boys?



Happy Homemaker Monday, The After Work Edition

I’m just sitting down to plan my week after a busy weekend followed by a full workday Monday. Linking my post to Sandra’s Happy Homemaker Monday like always.

This is the last Monday we’ll have a teenager in our house.  Next Monday, we’ll have two teenagers in the house! J’s 13th birthday is on Wednesday so it should be a fun one.

Breakfast Time: What Is On The Plate This Morning

Seems so long ago but I started my day with coffee and a peach cobbler yogurt.

Right Now I Am

Ignoring the huge pile of laundry on the bed while I type up this post.

The Weather Outside

Dark and Gray.  Not as cold as last week but definitely not super warm.  It’s supposed warm up again though.

Looking Around The House

Oh how I need to clean!

On Today’s To-Do List

  1. Work
  2. Fold and put away laundry
  3. Clean kitchen (dishwasher is unloaded/loaded at least)
  4. Talk to my husband about what we’re getting J for his birthday (no idea still)
  5. Sleep??  or Make list for tomorrow.  Commit to self that I am NOT working tomorrow, too much to do!

Currently Reading

Finished reading Dragon Teeth by Michael Crichton over the weekend and loved it.  No surprise about that.  Started in on a book titled, Captivology: The Science of Capturing People’s Attention by Ben Parr. Is it bad to say a book about capturing attention is not holding mine?  I’ll try to stick with it for a couple more chapters and see though.

On The TV Today

Nothing.  I may flip on Netflix while I fold laundry but I’m not sure what I’ll watch.

On The Menu This Week

The menus close to holiday weeks are always hard ones for me to plan.  And this one has a birthday dinner thrown in it. I also need to do a grocery store run.

MONDAY: G went to Taco Bell with a friend, J and I split a can of chicken noodle soup. My husband isn’t home from work yet.  *I worked 8-4*

TUESDAY:  Pork chops

WEDNESDAY: J requested chicken legs for his birthday dinner.  We’ll probably also get a Rotisserie chicken since not everyone is a fan of the chicken legs.  I’m thinking of making a giant salad to go along with the chicken.  And of course, we’ll have chocolate cake with white icing. *I work 8-1*

THURSDAY: Something easy. Maybe tacos?  *I may be working 9:30-6*

FRIDAY:  OUT! Or ordering pizza.

New Recipe I Tried Or Want To Try

This Triple Mint Chocolate Fudge recipe caught my eye! Sounds great for Christmas. Might be a fun thing to take to my December Bunco night.

One Of My Simple Pleasures

Trying new kinds of flavored coffee.

Favorite Photo From The Internet Or Camera

A carpet of leaves

Praying For

Wisdom and understanding.

Quote For The Week

The art of knowing is knowing what to ignore. (Jalaluddin Rumi)


What’s on your agenda for the week?



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