Saturday, December 27, 2008

Only Four Days 'til the NEW YEAR!

The New year is always about hope and promises , BUT WHAT ABOUT GOALS????

Resolutions, just forget it, everyone breaks them and then feels guilty and stressed. Goals are easier. If you don't achieve them, well, there is always the next day, week, or month.

The stress we put upon ourselves is just that. These are our goals and maybe they can't be achieved when we expect them to be. Just keep a positive attitude and move ahead every day.

I have lots of goals to post and I can hardly wait to unveil them, but right now they are all on paper and in my head so you will have to wait.

Friday, December 26, 2008

What are we eating on Christmas day??

The "Wife Saver" breakfast that we have every year now, mmmmm...

The turkey and the dressing are done and are on the counter cooling. Roast turkey, ohh so good!

Prepping the veggies and the gravy for dinner.

Okay, everything is ready and on the take the damn picture so that we can eat!!!

Where are we going to find the room for Yule Log? Never mind, I'm having some even if it means that I blow up while watching TV.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Some Thoughts About Christmas

Once again it has been awhile since I've written but I didn't sign a contract to blog everyday as yet!!

Still, I’m always hopeful Martha Stewart will arrive one day and cook in our kitchen. Oh what fun we will have fa la la la! Ok I know Santa can't even begin to fulfill that one, but I have other wishes for the Holiday season.

First, lets think of charitable organizations that we can all contribute to or volunteer for. Yes it is the Season for giving and everyone can!!!!! Please don't tell me “no, you can't” because all you have to do is look around you to find ways to get involved. Maybe even shovel off the walkway for your neighbor, bake an extra batch of cookies to share, visit someone in the manor who may need help addressing Christmas cards, time volunteered at a soup kitchen. You’ll get the BIG picture if your mind allows you.

I'm happy to say we gave very generously this year more so than last year because it made ME feel good and worthwhile. We have so much and as I have said before WE are truly blessed that I don't need to run out and buy just for the sake of having something around the tree.

Because of our jobs, this is the busiest time of the year but, yes, WE still contribute. So can you. NO EXCUSES!

Ok I’ve nagged enough so I'll wish everyone a Very Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukah, Happy Solstices, oh just Happy Everything and all the best in the New Year.

Hopefully I'll update my goals and wishes for 2009 and the side bars plus maybe I won't be sooooo shy and actually put my BLOG out there for the world to see. (Yeah, Martha Stewart)

Take Care and Happy Holidays to everyone.
Love Me XXXXXXX 00000000

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Christmas is Coming

Yes it has been awhile since I've blogged at all. Where does the time go? I've been busy doing my annual Christmas baking to be sent to all my loved ones in a far away land (okay… Toronto). Again, I have seemed to have taken on more than I can manage at this busy time but I do it ever year so I guess I will stop complaining and suck it up. I have baked gingerbread cookies, orange raisin cookies dipped in white chocolate, shortbread dipped in dark chocolate and crushed almonds, banana loaf, and a cranberry-orange loaf. I haven't finished yet. There is still my meat pie to make for Hubby and I on Christmas Eve, plus I might even try a new recipe along the way. There is always room for new ideas in this house.
Next week I hope to get our tree up and start decorating the house. I love this part of the holidays I just don't really like the shopping part, but I have that all finished and mailed off so there is just Hubby left. THE REALLY IMPORTANT ONE!!!!
Yesterday I made lasagna for dinner and pumpkin pie for dessert and it was fantastic. I really don't understand why Martha Stewart has not found out about me yet! That would be my dream spot on T.V. to work alongside her. Dreams have a way of coming true.
Work, well let’s not ruin my day, so we won't go there. The Annual Christmas party was last night so I'll hear all about it on Monday. There is always someone who wishes they had not gone.
I'm going to start my new savings budget for January, so it may be a while ‘til I update my sidebars.
Hopefully soon I will start posting this out. Still a little shy.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Rememberance Day

On the eleventh month of the eleventh day at the eleventh hour it is time to remember all the veterans and peacekeepers who bravely fought for the freedom we enjoy today. I think about this more and more as I get older and realize how much these men and women truly gave and believed in to make this a better country. I thank-you.

Haven't blogged for awhile I guess I have been just too plain lazy. Lately, I haven't had a lot of
energy and I think that just comes with this time of year. Today it's cold, windy and raining, not a promising day.

I've found some interesting sites on Geo Caching and I'm dying to try this game out. I found some great areas close to home but I'll have to wait to get a GPS to join in on the fun. Something for me to look forward to in the New Year

Went Christmas shopping yesterday as I had the day off. Got a few nice presents but mostly just stuck with gift certificates from their favorite haunts. Seems like such a waste to buy these and mail them while they will be doing the same for us. What we do to keep family happy.

Oh well I should be happy I have my family, I just wish at times we didn't live so far away.
I'm trying to get this finished early this year so I can start my Christmas baking. I really enjoy the baking and decorating the house and tree but the rest is so commercialized it can really spoil the season and meaning of the holiday.
Not like Halloween!!!!!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Halloween Rocks!!!!!!!

I have been off work since Wednesday afternoon and I spent the time planning away for Halloween (did I mention that it's my very favorite of all days?). Hubby had Thursday and Friday off so he started gutting the pumpkins early, and then Friday our creative sides took over. Don't worry, we will post lots of our pumpkin pictures for all the world to see. We have been doing this for over 30 years so I guess you can say we are well experienced in this field. Any potential job openings out there for me, as I might need it soon. Work is trying very hard to push me out the door. I would say its pay back time for being off the 4 months on sick leave. But for now lets not even think of that piece of s--- place cause it's Halloween and Halloween weekend. Yes, Halloween lasts a few days at this house. I dressed up as a WITCH, of course, and had a blast even though we only had 8 kiddies come begging. Saturday, we had friends over for drinks and snacks, which allowed me to use all my Halloween bowls and decorations to the max for a great looking table setting. Everyone really liked our carved pumpkins and lots of pictures were taken. Hubby does some amazing pumpkin carving which I'm sure you will all agree. It was a great weekend and my pumpkins right now are still on the front steps in the snow!!! We had snow this morning and then some hail and then more snow. I'm not impressed with the change in the weather. Hubby is watching the last formula 1 race of the season and I'm just hoping the damn satellite doesn't crap out on him.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

It's Almost Time!

Here are a few of our pumpkins from last year. I hope this year's will be as good.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Why do weekends go by so fast?

Yikes, the weekend is gone again and here it is Monday morning all ready!
It started out nice. We went apple picking at a great little spot not too far from home. The orchard was beautiful, especially with all the fall colours as a backdrop. There were so many varieties of apples to pick from (Honey crisps, Cortland, Macs, and a few other varieties the names of which escapes me just now. Getting old and the memory is going, too.) Anyway the price per pound was also good, 50 cents for any variety you picked. We picked 9 and a half pounds. I usually eat 2 apples a day at work while I'm walking at breaks so they probably won't last all that long, and I know a few horses who would appreciate them also. We made a pot roast for supper which turned out very tasty and will last us till Wed. this week then I'll have to think of two days of meal planning and this weekend I would like to have pizza night on Saturday. It is always a little harder to plan when I'm working the evening shift, but we manage.
I'm going to sit down this week and see what my long term goals may be. I would like to save over $25,000 in the next five years and wonder if this will be possibly with our mortgage payments and other expenses. Eventually we are going to need another vehicle which maybe the money saved will have to go to this big ticket item.
I just don't know how things are going to go in the future, right now the markets look so gloomy and I have already lost over $10,000 in investments because of the stock exchange collapse. I know there is no sense in panicking because everyone else is in the same boat; it’s just hard to see that money disappear when it would have been nice going against the mortgage. It’s all about paying that off as quick as possible.
Well I guess I better start gearing myself up for work soon.
I had to do some tests to prove to the idiots above that I was still capable of doing the job. So, all the tests came back PERFECT and now they are happy. We still have co-workers who have failed the tests a few times and haven't even redone them yet for fear of failing again. Poor little babies. What, they never failed anything in their lives before? We are also going to have another new recruit starting next week so I guess there will be another trainee for me to teach. With all these new recruits maybe the writing is on the wall for me. It would be funny if I was training my replacement, wouldn’t it?. I just can't figure out why they won't let me move on to another area in the plant. Yes, I know I'm very good at my job but, let’s face it, after 5 years in the same dept. I'm bored to death. No challenges makes for a very unhappy worker, while I realize others are very happy just to do the same thing day after day. Which type are you?
Have a great day.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Thanksgiving Weekend

I'm really enjoying my 5 day weekend. YA HOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!! Oh, did I scream that out loud.

Work has been busy and I'm back training a new recruit in the dept. Same old shit, just a different day.

Yesterday, the Better Half and I went for a drive around the neighbourhood and took some fall pictures. The weather was at least 70 degrees, which is a great Indian Summer day. The trees where pretty much picture perfect. All in all, it was a great day.

For Thanksgiving dinner I made an apple pie, 2 pumpkin pies and some butter tarts. Then we cooked a turkey with all the fixings and yes, all for just for 2 little piggies. There are lots of left-overs to freeze plus we will be eating turkey for the next couple of days. Gobble Gobble.

Its times like these that make me feel truly greatful. This is what I feel everyone needs to focus on. I'm so great full for certain things
1) My husband, he is my rock!!
2) Our family and friends
3) Our health
4) Our home
5) Our Financial situation, which is good right now.
6) Being Canadian and living on Witch Island.
7) Having a job, though this area needs improvement down the road.

Boy, when you sit back and read all this, we our truly blessed.

Hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving Day and don't forget to vote tomorrow, your vote may just change the outcome of our great country.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Sunday Blues

Were did this week go???
I'm not even going to talk about work because I don't want to waste any of the positive energy I have today on that place. Pretty well sums up the kind of week I had.
Yesterday we did the annual food drive for my Better half's work place. We collected a huge amount of food which is then donated to the Salvation Army's food bank. It was nice, once again, to see the generosity of the community here in the Witch's Island's little city. The food banks have really been suffering this year as more and more people are being forced to rely on them. You just never know when you may be in that position.
I also made time for a few flea markets and really scored big on a few items. That really made my day. Did a little grocery shopping so I can meal plan for the week. We're having pot roast today with all the root veggies I can cram in. YUMMY!!!!
Later, I'll do some house cleaning, laundry and maybe I'll have time for a quick walk, then I might make some cupcakes. I have been craving them for some reason.I can hardly wait for Thanksgiving. My pie crusts are all made and just waiting to be filled with my pumpkin pie filling. Grocery shopping will take a big hit next month. Turkeys have really gone up in price, but really, what hasn't? And at $12.00 for a bag of flour, which I also need, and all the baking I do, its going to be an expensive holiday.
The outside of our house is all decorated with Pumpkins and I just love the way it looks. Like I mentioned in an earlier post, Pumpkins make me happy. In the next week I'll start decorating for Halloween "WITCH" is my favorite day of the year. I'm not a Christmas person, though I really love decorating our tree and all the good food that goes with the holiday. The present thing is frustrating, though. I only have a small family and my Mom would be so disappointed if I didn't do the exchange that it is not worth the aggravation to stop I guess. Oh, what you do for family.
Well I guess I better get my ass in gear if I'm going to get out for a walk later on before the high winds and hurricane Kyle arrive.

Monday, September 22, 2008

I'm Back and wishing I wasn't!!!!!

It was a hard day today. I felt very empty inside going back to work at a place that I have worked at for over 5 years. Yes, some of my co-workers were very happy to see me, with hugs all around, while others were just plan mean. The jerk supervisor , the one with no personality skills just comes in and says "Hello, if you want to continue your job your tests are due. Oh, and by the way, a new schedule is being worked on for the Fall". In other words, get ready to have us change your life again. Man, I really hate working in this department and mostly because of him. I would much rather work in any other department, even with no pay raise, just to be rid of him. That's pretty sad. The main supervisor passed me in the hall and surprizingly said hello and then asked if I had retained my job skills after being off for the summer. What is it with the stupid questions? They are so unprofessional at this company. I really wished that I had not returned today. Anyway it's one day at a time for now.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Pumpkins make me happy!!!!

Well, it's my last week of freedom because Monday I return to the HELL HOLE. The Human Resources department called this week to tell me that my shift, which was supposed to be evenings only, was being changed to days(because I've been "OFF FOR SO LONG", as they put it.) Ok, its not going to be a warm welcome back by that tone.

Anyway, the rest of my day was GREAT. I found the perfect pumpkins in our garden to decorate our house for Fall. Our sunflowers have done fantastic and I'll post some pictures soon. The weather is really getting cool in the evenings, and I know that frosty nights won't be too far away. Better Half is cutting the lawn right now and then we are going to make a Chicken stir fry with veggies from the garden and left-overs of the fried rice I made earlier in the week. YUM!!! It will likely be a hot dish as we both like spicy food and we planted a lest 12 hot pepper plants. They have started to turn very red so we have strung them up and are letting them dry for later use. This works very well, we are still using up last year's chilli peppers.

Tomorrow I'm going shopping, I haven't been outside of the house for 5 days. You certainly don't spend money this way. Actually, we have managed to still save money while I have been off, which is hard to believe, but it just shows us that we can survive on less than we think.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Gearing up to return to work.

Only 7 days left till I return to work. I don't know if at this point whether I'm happy or sad about this. The place is very stressful and I felt the majority of the work load was falling on my shoulders while the others walked around talking most of the day. It is a strange place at times because if you don't socialize you get criticized for it and if you do socialize too much you get reprimanded. Very hard to keep a happy balance. Too many supervisors who pawn their work off on other unskilled mini supervisors, so at times you don't know who's in charge. My yearly performance review will also be due when I return (can hardly wait to see that!). I'm really hoping that they will move me to another area in the plant. As I mentioned before, I have been asking for a transfer and really I feel that 5 years has been long enough in this shop. My start day back will be on afternoon shifts so my menu planning is more difficult to do and I don't get to see my Better Half till Friday night because he is in bed by the time I get home.UGH!!!! Makes for a long week. But I guess it pays the bills and I'm really looking forward to trying to squeeze the budget even more. The faster we pay off the mortgage the faster I'm outta this place.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

At the beach today

Its overcast and warm today, so we decided to go to the beach in Rustico and hunt for driftwood. No unusual finds today but there seems to be a lot of garbage on the the shore line. Man, I hate seeing that!!
Then went for a scenic drive around and then stopped at Cows Ice Cream one last time before they close up for the winter. Their chocolate ice cream is to die for, it tastes like fudgicles. Yum. Better half had a smoothie which was also quite yummy. Their stuff is pricey, ($8.60) but what the heck we only go twice a year.
Time to do some housecleaning and warm up the left over pot roast from yesterday. It was a nice relaxing day. Hope yours was as well.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

The benefit was a success

Yesterday was the benefit for a co-worker of my better half and it was a real success. Lots of stuff was donated, and lots of baked goods were also auctioned off. All in all, we managed to raise close to $7,000.00. The generosity from the community was just outstanding and we are so lucky to be living here. I managed to bid on a few items and we even won the 50/50 draw. We used the winnings to bid on the most expensive gum drop cake ($191.00) but you always want to return the money back into the event, I mean really who wouldn't?
Today will be just a relaxing day as I try to plan my food menu for next week and just start to mentally gear up to returning back to work (Sept 22). Then I will be able to concentrate more on our budget . Right now the money has only been 60 percent of my regular pay so it hasn't been easy. I really believe in having an emergency fund set up for this, so I will have to get busy and start building that up again. With such a short time period to the end of this year a lot of my goals will probably have to be adjusted. Such is life, you never know what's around the turn.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Visiting old friends.

Yesterday was a very busy day. The couple who purchased our old house called to see if we wanted some Damson plums from the tree which we planted about 20 years ago. My better half and I jumped at the chance to gather these plums because they make the best jam ever. The jam is very tart and again, it's one of my grandmother's old recipes. We made a double batch which took us more than 3 hours in total to do but it was really worth the time and effort. Yum!!, that was the end result and they make great X-mas gifts.

We also received a call last night from another of one of our old neighbours who now lives in Nova Scotia. She wanted us to visit her at the cottage she still has in Mill River. So, today, away we went went with goodies in hand (jam and veggies from the garden). We had a great visit with her and her son and she made us a delicious corn chowder for lunch. We are both greatly blessed to have great long time friends.

This week has just been flying by. Vacation will be over soon. Don't you just hate the thoughts of that!!!!!! We have been making crafts for a benefit auction this week and I'm really hoping they bring in a whopping amount of dough when they go under the hammer. We'll post the pictures of our handy work sometime soon.

Better Half is cutting the lawn right now and I'm going to go and make the salad for supper. It's going to be made with mesculin lettuce, feta cheese and watermelon served with a basalmic vinegar and oil dressing. The rest of the meal will be baked P.E.I. potatoes and BBQ chicken wings. Not really a dieter's supper I guess but, what the heck, we are on vacation and it doesn't look like we will be traveling this time around. Maybe in October, which is my favorite month anyway. I'm a real Halloween person who goes all out carving Pumpkins and decorating. I just wish Martha Stewart would find me.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Who I am and why I'm here.

I’m not a accountant, I’m a engineer who is currently employed in a different trade. I have never taken any economic courses but I’m trying to become a self taught financial guru. I enjoy trying to improve my budget every month so that I can keep our financial situation strong. Hopefully by blogging daily I can keep my goals in perspective and see how I doing. My goals and reasons for starting this blog are to:

  • Keep my spending on track.
  • Pay off our only debt right now, which is the mortgage.
  • Build up my RRSP savings.
  • Build up my emergency fund.
  • Cut down on grocery spending.
  • Make menu planning a must do.
  • Make daily exercise a must do.
  • Allow for some quality reading time.
  • And, the most and important right now, is to plan for our retirement at freedom 55!!!!!!

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Pickling up-date.

It was a busy week with pickling and gardening and entertaining. The chow recipe was not the best so I guess I'll be surfing for another. Too bad though, it's very time consuming chopping all the vegetables and cooking it to have it not turn out the way you remember your Grandmother's tasting.
My better half did most of the chopping, which was really a big help. He loves the smell of it all cooking in the house.
Our garden is the best ever and we have been really benefiting from it this year along with all our friends and co-workers who have been receiving all the overflow. We had some friends over on Friday and we cooked a great meal for them. Honey Garlic Pork Roast and Fried Rice with Peach and Blueberry Crisp for dessert. No one went away hungry.
It is pouring down rain right now and my better half is a little pissed because the satellite dish is out again, as always, when his Formula 1 racing is scheduled... urg!
In a couple of weeks I go back to work after being off for 4 months due to medical issues and I wondering what it will be like as I was not enjoying the area I was working in for the last 5 years.
I have asked to be moved to other areas of the plant but no such luck. Not when you're good at what you do. Maybe after being off they will change their minds ( ya and pigs fly, right?) The company itself is really a fantastic place and has so many interesting areas through out that you go all goggle eyed trying to take it all in.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Pickling Season

Yes, its that time of the year. We have already made two batches of my great-grandmother's Dutch Salad Pickles, two batches of peach jam and one batch of Chow Chow pickles. The last was a new recipe to us that I found out on the net somewhere but the results weren't what I was expecting. Ideally, I would be making Vera's recipe, but for some reason I never asked her for it and now its beyond recovery. So today I found another example and I'm giving that a try. I'll keep you posted on how it turns out but for now its looking good.

Blogging, a worthwhile past-time?

Okay, is this something that will be fun to do, or will it just be a waste of pixels? Time, as the saying goes, will tell.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Hello, World

Brand new, and just testing!