Sweet Silver Lining

just watching the clouds…

Smoked Sausage Potato Soup January 11, 2015

Filed under: entertainment,family,food — dragonfly180 @ 1:37 pm
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I’m always coming up with or finding great recipes that I try out and then forget about, so I thought I needed to post them somewhere when I really like one. This is one that I came up with after looking over different soup recipes, trying to use up some potatoes I had in the kitchen.

There’s nothing like a warm, thick soup on a cold, rainy day like today. Great comfort food! Here is the recipe for this delicious and hearty soup.

Smoked Sausage Potato Soup
4-5 lbs red potatoes, peeled and cut into large chunks
2 ribs celery (plus I diced the celery greens, which have lots of good flavor!)
2 packages smoked sausage (9 oz packages), cut into 1/4″ thickness
1 block of cream cheese
1 can condensed cream of mushroom soup (26 oz)
1 package dry ranch dressing mix
2 cups water

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Spray the slow-cooker with oil. Add potatoes, celery, and smoked sausage. Pour in half the cream of mushroom. In the soup can, add ranch seasoning and some of the water. Stir and add to slow-cooker. Add the rest of the water. Cut the cream cheese into chunks and add to the pot. Cook on high for four hours (or low for about six). Stir after an hour to make sure everything is well combined.

Top with shredded cheese and a little fresh ground black pepper. Serve with crackers or cornbread.

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I Miss My Old Self January 4, 2014

Filed under: family,running — dragonfly180 @ 1:35 pm
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With New Years resolutions flying here and there, most people are focusing on who they can become, not who they were. Yet I sit here in the floor with my 8 month old daughter as she plays, still in my pjs at lunchtime and wondering why I ate a chocolate doughnut for breakfast not long ago (not to mention why I even had such crap in my house to begin with!). Rachel has become very clingy over the holiday break and won’t let me get a foot away from her for most of the day. Getting a shower on days when I’m home by myself with her is an achievement these days. So I’m sitting here feeling a little sorry for myself, though it’s been great hanging with my little mini-me and watching her learn new stuff everyday. People everywhere are focusing on making improvements to their lives, but I can’t help but find myself looking back to my old self, the one who would have gotten a great run in this morning, who would have had a yummy protein shake for breakfast, and who would already be in the middle of a fun new workout program. She would throw on her cute workout outfit whenever the mood struck her and get down to business. Or she’d lay around reading a good book after her morning run, enjoying her coffee and planning what to do with the rest of her last leisurely day off from work. She might go shopping, make a new running playlist, or work on a new painting. As a new mom, I feel guilty about even thinking this way. I love my daughter and have enjoyed the past two weeks with her. Though I no longer have the ability to focus only on myself for the new year, becoming a mother helps me to focus on a new type of resolution, one that isn’t so selfish. Because as much as I know that I still need lots of improvement, now my resolve is based on what’s best for my family. I want to unplug more, get angry and stressed less often, and show Rachel all the love and attention that is possible. No new workout plan can compare to the life-changing power of a sweet baby. Becoming mother is a far greater achievement than becoming hottie ever could be. The road and my running shoes will be there. Rachel will only cling to me for a short while. There will be a day when she won’t need to reach for my hand as she tries to stand on her own.

 

Top 10 Free iPhone Apps to Lose Weight March 9, 2013

Filed under: family,fitness,food,hEaLtH — dragonfly180 @ 10:55 pm
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Top 10 Free iPhone Apps to Lose Weight.

 

wow, some of these apps are awesome and i need to check into downloading them into my iPhone! with rachel coming soon, i need to save this list so i can get my head back in the game and start losing baby weight after she arrives. i will NOT be one of those women who claims 3 years later that she *just* had a kid and that’s why she’s still fat. nope, nope, nope! i vow that that will not be me!

 

People I Want to Punch in the Throat: Rules for Parents of Daughters January 16, 2013

Filed under: family — dragonfly180 @ 7:16 am

Here’s some great advice for raising daughters:

People I Want to Punch in the Throat: Rules for Parents of Daughters.

 

2013 is here! January 1, 2013


A new year has begun. Many are so afraid to set resolutions for fear of failure. Not me. I love setting goals for myself, even if I don’t reach all of them. Here is what I’m looking forward to this year:

  • I’m going to be a mommy! This is probably the biggest and most important thing that will happen to me in 2013. This opens a huge door for all kinds of resolutions, but for the most part, I want to just learn how to take care of my baby and juggle the responsibilities of family and work. Since I’ll be having Rachel at the end of the Spring semester, I’ll get all summer to spend time with her and get adjusted to being a mommy before going back to work in the fall. I know the time will fly by, but I hope to make the most of it. Which leads me to my next resolution…
  • I want to focus on spending my time wisely. I am the Queen of Time Wasting. Brother Don gave a sermon about time wasting just this Sunday, and it really hit home. Satan steals our time with needless anxiety by overloading us with unnecessary commitments, possessions, work, and information. The other major source of anxiety (and time-wasting) is regret. We have only 8,760 hours in a year. Why spend it dwelling on what has already happened and can’t be changed? Instead of wasting time on the above robbers of time, I want to focus my attention to the following: drawing closer to God, spending time with family and friends, doing all I can to raise Rachel as well as I am able, taking care of my health (exercise and nutrition).

Those are the things I’m setting my sights on in 2013. My spiritual life is very important to me, so I plan on devoting more time to Bible study and prayer. I plan on working through the entire Bible in a year (one of those plans for weekly study), but even if I am unable to always keep up, reading even half or a third on my own will be better than just opening it only when I’m in church.

I feel like I am constantly struggling to give more attention to my family and friends, who honestly deserve it. I know I can do better in this area. I have resolved to work on this issue in the past, and I believe that it has gotten much better recently. There is always room for improvement, though!

I am already focusing a lot of attention on how I want to raise Rachel. I am reading some books that I think might be helpful. I am getting my registry in order, buying some clothes and other items along the way, and learning about cloth diapering. I’m taking birthing and breastfeeding classes this month to prepare for her arrival.

As I always strive to do, I plan on focusing on my health. During the time I was trying to conceive, I let a lot of this go to the wayside. I stopped teaching Zumba when I had my first miscarriage in March. Zumba had been my most favorite type of working out, and suddenly, it was gone. So was that 2-3 hours of calorie burn every week that I was suddenly missing. I wasn’t eating all that well and rarely exercised. Running wasn’t giving me the solace it had in the past. Much of it was from apathy/light depression. Some of it was from fear that exercise might cause another miscarriage. So I became complacent about my health. Now, I am struggling because I am gaining a good bit of weight with this pregnancy. I know that I can make more time for weekly exercise (I have become very lazy about exercise and have really lost the habit), and my nutrition has been atrocious. I’d really gotten into the mindset of ‘I’m pregnant, so I can eat whatever I want!’ I know better, so I’m going to start eating better. Will you never see me with a big scoop of Coldstone? No, I won’t go that far. :) But I can doing better on a day-to-day basis. Part of making health a priority is to maintain focus, which I do through my Facebook page, which is a source of self-motivation, and Dailymile.com, where I keep up with my yearly walking and running miles.

It’s always a little overwhelming looking at what you want to accomplish in a year, but we are amazing in our ability to adapt to new things. Make your 2013 a wonderful year.

 

Dolly Partons Imagination Library – USA, United Kingdom, Canada December 17, 2012

Filed under: family — dragonfly180 @ 10:59 pm

while i don’t always agree with her views, this is a really good charity that dolly has started up. children through 5 years can register to receive a free book per month.

Dolly Partons Imagination Library – USA, United Kingdom, Canada.

 

“Mom, I’m Fat:” One Mother’s Inspired Response to Her 7 Year Old « Rachel Simmons August 31, 2012

Filed under: family — dragonfly180 @ 8:21 pm

“Mom, I’m Fat:” One Mother’s Inspired Response to Her 7 Year Old « Rachel Simmons.

 

if you’re the parent of a daughter, you should really read this. people’s preoccupation with looks starts as soon as the baby is born, and we train her to value an unattainable perfection that only results in dissatisfaction and anguish later on. boys go through this, too, i am sure, but maybe not as early as and perhaps not as intensely as girls do.