January 2014

To-Do # 27 was to paint my nails at least once a week and thus far I have. Here is are the five colors for each Friday in January:


Here is my supplies that hang in jewelry bags hanging in my closet:

nails1 nails2

I’ll recount them soon but at one point I had 109 different shades/brand of nail polish. I purged a lot when I started organizing my closet. I purchased these jewelry bags at Ross for $5.99 each and work great for holding the bottles. I prefer to get the acrylic clear boxes but don’t have the space to hang them in this tiny rental house.

January 2014

Cherry Chocolate Kiss Cookie

I made this cookie on Jan 31, 2014. The last day of the month! John, Matt and I liked the cookie but don’t think Chris did because he only ate one. Philip didn’t stop by in time (he was given one day to get some) and David because he left to help with Riley, Caleb and Jesse.

These are a shortbread based cookie and go great with hot chocolate or nice proper tea. I followed the recipe but for future baking of these cookies I’ll add more than the 1/2 cup of cherries and make the cherries bigger chunks.

Cherry Chocolate Kisses

1 cup unsalted butter, softened, but still cool*****very important!

1 cup powdered sugar

1/8 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons maraschino cherry “juice”

1/4 teaspoon almond extract

2 and 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup maraschino cherries, chopped

Granulated sugar, for sprinkling the cookies

however many milk chocolate kisses needed, unwrapped


1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

2. In the bowl of your standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter at medium speed until creamy, about 1 minute.

3. Reduce the speed to the lowest setting and slowly add the powdered sugar and salt.

4. Add the cherry juice and the almond extract until combined.

5. With the mixer still on low, slowly add the flour, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

6. Increase the mixer speed to medium and add the cherries.

7. Shape the dough into 1-inch balls, and place the balls on a baking sheet, approximately 2 inches apart.

8.  Using your thumb, gently press each cookie in its center until the cookie is about 1/2-inch thick.

9.  Sprinkle each cookie with a little granulated sugar.

10.  Bake the cookies until the bottoms are lightly browned, about 14 minutes.

11. Once removed from the oven, immediately press a chocolate kiss into each cookie’s center.

12.  Transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely.

cherry cookie cherry thumbprint cookie1

Still January

For this week:
(1.) Hiked 3 miles at Tiger Mountain—I hadn’t planned on hiking but since I did trail repair there… Foggy view from the trail at Tiger Mountain


(3.) 1 Trail Repair done this week—4 to go for the remaining year. I worked at Tiger Mountain and earned one certificate to go toward a Discovery Pass (3 need to be earned and submitted to get the pass for free). I scheduled 3 more volunteer trail repairs for the next 3 months. I did 3 run-off repairs on the trail and this one had to go under a log that we could not move so I had to go under. On the other side of this log, which had to be dug out and cleared was the nasty devil’s club which is in the second picture below. It kept brushing up against me and I pricked myself several times when I tried moving it out of my way. The needles would go right thru my work gloves. Truly a nasty plant/weed!

woods4 woods3

(5.) Still reading Outlander—damn long book but awesome!
(9.) I did one pin yesterday. I made egg salad sandwiches for dinner along with baked potatoes. The pin I used was adding vinegar to boil eggs to make them easier to peel. The eggs were just purchased on the 22nd so they were fairly fresh eggs and tend to be harder to peel. They peeled easier, although about a third seemed were missing bits of whites here and there. I went to the store and John removed the eggs from the stove and peeled them by the time I got back. It took longer when I went out because I dropped off Matt at a concert at the Aurora House (Philip’s house).
(15.) Still blogging at least once a week! 
(20-21.) Still haven’t done!!!!!!! I’ll be going thru Pinterest to see which recipes to do for this month. As for date night with the husband—lack of funds prevented us from going out to the movies, which was John’s choice of date.
(27.) Slow to get this done this week but I’m sporting a nice shade of light blue. I’m being a bit lazy and don’t want to get up and see the name of the nail polish.
(46.) Again with not wearing a skirt or dress to work this week because of the tasks that I did this week. I was off on Monday for MLK day, Tuesday was just a blah day because it was my first day back after being off for a while to watch kids for Dave and Kelly in addition to having a nasty sinus cold. Wednesday, I ran around getting new tires for the car (errand during work hours—used my lunch time), got some groceries. Thursday, blah! Friday took Shoggie to vet for his yearly shots, exam, and allergy breakout. He’s an expensive pup! That left me with Saturday—a day relaxing at home—somewhat. Kelly went back into the hospital early this morning for complications from surgery but got released this evening and grandkids went home at 7’ish PM.
We’ve got another audit at work coming up and I’m seriously getting damn tired of all the State, Federal, City, County, Peer, and funding audits. I wish the federal government did away with WIA Funding so that it’d push me to do something different. I did apply for another job but didn’t get an interview. I was sad but a bit relieved at the same time, I don’t know if I want to start a new job someplace else, especially not for the government which that position was. My ultimate goal is to work at the University of Washington in Seattle. I’ll keep looking for jobs there…
I need to work on my To-Do List (goals) and start exercising!
Wow, January is almost over…

BTW, the numbers above match the items on the to-do list

The Good, The Tiring, The Bad, and the Bonus

The good: Dave’s third child was born on Jan 15th at around 1 AM at TG. She’s named Jesse, but I don’t know her whole name.
The tiring: Riley and Caleb stayed here while Kelly was in the hospital from Tuesday evening to Saturday evening. Riley was a handful that had a few meltdowns (biggest was at bath time). Caleb was a lot easier, he just kept climbing everything. This house is not baby proofed.
The bad: I got a sinus cold and possibly from Philip. His car needs to be repaired and I had to drop off & pick up for a couple of days.
The Bonus: I took half day Wednesday (Jan 15th), all of Thursday and Friday off to help Dave & Kelly. I totally forgot that Monday (MLK Day) was a holiday and I’ve got that day off too!

I’ve been meeting my goals EXCEPT one :( exercising. This is a short entry so that I can at least meet this goal of weekly entries!

New Year’s First Full Week

I planned on posting this earlier in the week but my laptop was down. I just got this thing for Christmas and we believed it was no longer working. John had used the laptop to take some online testing for work and did not take the cable plug, just the laptop. When I got on that evening after work to do my posting and peruse Pinterest, I was only on for a few minutes when it went totally off and wouldn’t turn back on. So I called my IT man, John, and he couldn’t get it to turn on either. I went three days without the laptop–which I really didn’t miss but was frustrated that I just got the damn thing and it wasn’t working. I was moving things around by my chair and thought I’d check one more time to see if I could get it working before calling the company up to tell them off. Well… I reach for the cord and it was unplugged at the power strip. Once it was plugged in its rightful place (on the power strip!!) the laptop turn right up. I got after John for not checking, after all  he was the IT person in the house. He simply said that he expected that I had the cord plugged in. It turns out the we had gotten very comfortable at home. While Matt was gone we had gotten so used too (as I said–comfortable) that when we put something somewhere; it would still be there when we went looking for it. Matt had unplugged the laptop cord. <sigh>

What have I accomplished this week:

    • #3. Do 5 trail repair crew parties with the Washington Trail Association (first volunteer repair day: Tiger Mountain:  Jan 19 meeting at 8:30AM)
    • #5. Read 12 books this year (reading book 1 Outlander by Diana Gabaldon)
    • #9. Do 20 Pins from my Pinterest Boards (not including the camping recipes) (made Scallop Hasselback potatoes 1/11/14 VERY Yummy picture below of what it looked like from Pinterest and then mine-before going on plate with sour cream)
    • cook1cheesy tatter
    • #15. Blog AT LEAST once a week (check)
    • #27. Paint my nails at least once a week (I’ve got a lot of nail polish and I might as well use them) (1st color Sally Hansen-Endless Claret; very red and sparkly color)
    • #31. Pack lunch to work for at least 3 days a week (if not every day!) (check)
    • #32. Help 12 random strangers this year without them knowing about it (I was at Safeway at lunch time to buy TP–quick in and out. There was a lady with a young girl in front of me and she was buying the essentials (no extras) and didn’t have enough money with her. She needed $2.32 to get all the items and told the cashier to hold her stuff and that she had to go get the change in her car (she left her reusable grocery bags behind so that told me she would be back for the food). While she was gone I paid for her grocery bill which was only $23.32 but I’m sure it would make a difference in her life. I left before she got back and we passed each other at the door; she was coming back in and I was leaving and she smiled at me. As I was driving out of the parking lot, the woman and girl were coming out of the store smiling and looking happy.)
    • #33. Get rid of clothing that is to big on me that way it forces me to stay a smaller size (Check–purged my closet and bag is sitting in trunk to drop off at a box or Goodwill)
    • #34. Exercise at least 3 times a week (can include run/walk training) (Bust, I prefer to walk but it’s been raining and it’s the sideways type of rain so I haven’t gone out to walk/exercise)
    • #46. Wear a skirt/dress at least once a week (I’ve a ton of skirts and I really need to wear them!) (Plan was to wear one to work but I had to be out in the field and didn’t not want to walk around in a dress in the rain so I wore one for 4 hrs at home–I’m counting it!)

New Year’s Day

I decided not to do resolutions this year as I tend not to succeed in actually doing them. There was a posting in one of the Pinterest pages regarding “To Do List” vs Resolutions and I’d much rather have a To Do List. I’ve got to do list at work and home and seem to have great success with accomplishing the tasks on the list. So, for the New Year I’ve come up with at least 47 items to do since I’ll be turning 47 years old this year, some with time limits others without but all to be completed by the end of the year.

  1. Hike 15 times this year with a majority of them during the spring/summer season.
  2. Sew 6 new clothing items for myself
  3. Do 5 trail repair crew parties with the Washington Trail Association
  4. Plant/Grew a garden
  5. Read 12 books this year
  6. Go to a pumpkin patch
  7. Go camping at least of 5 times this year
  8. Try 10 new recipes for camping
  9. Do 20 Pins from my Pinterest Boards (not including the camping recipes)
  10. Give out Birthday Card along with gifts to my boys and loved ones
  11. Re-do the bathroom
  12. Organize photos
  13. Create menus with in the first 6 months of this year and use at least 3 month with the intention to use on a more permanent basis.
  14. Create a budget using cash envelopes system
  15. Blog AT LEAST once a week
  16. Create a cleaning list for weekly, monthly, and semi-annual for the house
  17. Organize the kitchen cabinets and purge unnecessary items
  18. Clean and organize items in storage
  19. Organize camping equipment
  20. Bake a cookie of the month (This was Paige’s goal for last year and thought it was an awesome idea!)
  21. Have one Date Night a month with the Husband
  22. Have a cook-out party for/with family and friends
  23. Learn to can some jelly or jam
  24. Create a bug-out bag for each family member (including the grandkids)
  25. Build a 3 month emergency food supply bin and 5 gallons of water for each family member
  26. Create an emergency plan for the family and tell the plan to the family at a family gather
  27. Paint my nails at least once a week (I’ve got a lot of nail polish and I might as well use them)
  28. Build a fairy house
  29. Work with Cha-cha and create a family tree chart
  30. Participate in 3 run/walk event, minimum 5K
  31. Pack lunch to work for at least 3 days a week (if not every day!)
  32. Help 12 random strangers this year without them knowing about it
  33. Get rid of clothing that is to big on me that way it forces me to stay a smaller size
  34. Exercise at least 3 times a week (can include run/walk training)
  35. Take care of and pamper self by getting at least 6 pedicures, 4 hair colors, 1 hair trim, and 2 messages
  36. Do the Portland Marathon!!
  37. Do the Seattle half marathon (not a fan of the nasty weather here the area in November)
  38. Vacation in Las Vegas with family and sister’s family!
  39. Ride a zip-line (there’s one in Vegas but also here in WA, decisions-decisions…)
  40. Take Chris out for a one-on-one time 3 times this year
  41. Take Matt out for a one-on-one time 3 times this year
  42. Take Phil out for a one-on-one time 3 times this year
  43. Take Dave out for a one-on-one time 3 times this year
  44. Take Shogun out for a walk in the wood at least 6 times this year
  45.   Go down at least one dress size this year (currently in size 18-20)
  46. Wear a skirt/dress at least once a week (I’ve a ton of skirts and I really need to wear them!)
  47. Decorate the house for each holiday season!


Ok, so I’m working towards the goal of section hiking the Pacific Northwest Trail (Montana to Washington) in 2015-16.It seems like a long time from now but if I start training now I’ll be as ready as I’ll ever be.


Pacific Northwest Trail
Goals for the next 6 months (1/2014-6/2014)
*Hike at least once a month
*Snowshoe 5 times this winter!!
*Walk 4+ miles a minimum of 3 times/week and build on increasing distance
*Participate in half marathon
*Work on strengthening my core

I would love to thru hike the trail all in the one summer but it’s going to be my 30th wedding anniversary in 2015 and I agreed to a two week cruise with the husband. I suppose… :-D

With working fulltime and volunteering at the Prison Pet Partnership Program, I will be very busy! The kids are grown and the youngest is out of the house so I’ve got the freedom to do what I want. I’ll try not to ignore the husband! :P


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