Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Holy freakin' delicious protein shake!

Wow.  I nailed the perfect protein shake recipe...for a non post workout :)

Here's the recipe:

1. 12 ounces of unsweetened vanilla almond milk
2. 1c frozen blueberries
3. 2 tbsp or so of chia seeds
4. Kahlua to taste (a lot for tonight).
5. 3/4 scoop of generic Target vanilla protein powder mix

Repeat if you don't have to go to work, or you hate your job.  But, honestly, if you hate your job, just quit and follow your dreams.

Oh, book recommendation!  Junkyard Wonders by Patricia Pollaco.  Wow.  I read it for the first time this past fall, but given some of the content, I decided not to read it since we experienced it first hand this past fall (we still miss you Julia and always will).  My daughter (3rd grade) read it tonight as part of her homework and it brought tears to my eyes again.  If you and your child read it, make sure you read the last page, after the main story ends.  As you read it, know that it is a true story.

Have a good one, peeps.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Awesome Family Day

Yesterday was the first day in who knows how long our family had nothing on its agenda other than to enjoy seize the day.  We had a loose "plan" of what we wanted to do, but didn't care when it happened.  Here's how our relaxing family day went:

We started off with a post office run and to get new cleats for the kids at Geist Sports in Topton, PA.  Soccer for Maddie and baseball for Connor.  It might be Connor's last pair as he is beginning to lose interest in baseball.  Maddie?  It's only begun, we think.  She's tiny but mighty and fearless in goal.  I haven't seen many other goalies at Maddie's level (U9) that stand in goal without flinching as a shot gets lined right at her from about five feet away.  After that we stopped in at Sleeping Dog Pro Cycles right next door.  My son drooled over the cyclocross bikes.  That's the net bike he wants after he outgrows his mountain bike. He did a race last fall where he finished 5th and loved it!  Me?  I drooled over the road and tri/TT bikes.  I gotta get back out.  My wife did say I can get a new bike if I get out and ride again.  Considering that I've run around twice in the past week and paid for it the next day with pain in my knee all day, I need to.

After that we had lunch at home and then were off to the coffee shop, Global Libations in Kutztown, PA.  This was what I was looking forward to.  This was our "Creation Time."  Maddie brought a couple books and also spent some time sketching.  Connor brought legos for building, but also sketched out what he wanted to build.  Jane and I both spent time reading and writing.  I think we were there for about two hours or so.

Next up was walking around Main Street in Kutztown.  We saw a B&B that was up for sale and we decided that, if we could afford it, we'd buy it.  $1.3 million.  We walked around Firefly bookstore.  Well, Jane, Connor and I did.  Maddie found a book and plopped down on a bean bag chair.  Next up was an art gallery and then a pretzel shop.

From there, we went to Kutztown Park and the kids spent a couple hours getting some daily exercise/fun in :)  Jane and I?  I sat and read, and read.  Jane did as well but also spent time taking shots with her polaroid in color and B&W.  Then it was off to home to sit around and do nothing but enjoy each other's company.

I loved having this day and can't wait for the next one!!
My view at the park

Saturday, March 15, 2014

The Past Month in Review

That is all...

Ok, not quite.  Except in terms of actual running.  That's still a zero.

Stationary trainer?  I got on it twice in the past couple weeks and had planned on more, but things happen.

Things like my wife breaking her upper arm into three pieces when she fell out in Vegas, then needing surgery to insert a rod.  Not fun.  I felt so helpless; there was nothing I could do.  She's in so much pain, but it's been getting better the past week or so.  She's been kicking PT's butt, too.  She's going where I went oh so many times.

I joined a 12x12 Picture Book Writing Challenge that I've been spending way too much time at.  On the plus side, I've written 4 picture book manuscripts in the 6 weeks or so since I joined.  I've also submitted a few MS's to agents and publishers as well as a poem I just sent out to Highlights.

My book, The Rabbit Who Wished He Could Fly has been making the rounds on a couple running blogs: Life As A Running Mom and Miss Zippy- Thanks ladies!!  I've had a few others post pictures as well.  I really appreciate the support!!!

Also, I just got it into a large, independent bookstore, The Towne Bookcenter and Cafe in Collegeville, PA.  I was hoping they'd take 4 or 5, but the woman in charge of books by independent authors said she'd take all the ones I had on me!  Lucky 13 :)

With the weather warming up, and the snow slowly melting away I plan on getting out to the trails.  I'd like to hike a couple miles with a couple minutes of running thrown in.  Really, I just want an excuse to play in the mud!!

I hope life is being good to you all and that you're finding happiness in all you do!!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

My kid's picture book is on Amazon!!

Hey All!

I haven't been running at all for the past 2+ months (I'll post why below...).  But, I have been keeping busy with writing.  I have two fantasy short up on Amazon for Kindle and, now, I have my kid's picture book up as well!

Water colors look so amazing!!
The Rabbit Who Wished He Could Fly has been an ongoing project for about 7 months.  I first wrote the story in early July on a whim.  I posted it in a writer's forum and got rave reviews and ideas for refining it.  After sending it off to an editor/friend, and more revisions, I decided to find an illustrator and self-publish the book (that makes me an indie author- I kinda like that title!).  I found one (Jennifer Frith-check out her blog and her other works!) and she is phenomenal!  She worked so hard on the pictures for the book and is such an amazing person.  Once I got all the images, I formatted them, and sent them in to Createspace (a self publishing/printing division of Amazon).  I got the first proof back, made a couple changes and....voila!  A book:
It is available on Amazon in soft covered or for your Kindle. 

The big idea of the story: Kona, a rabbit, wishes he could fly like his friends, Bella, a crow, and Morgan, a sparrow. But, when Bella and Morgan get stuck in a net covered blueberry patch, will Kona be able to help them? Will he realize that being a rabbit is the only way he can save them? The Rabbit Who Wished He Could Fly is a classic tale about the importance of being yourself. (I took this from the Amazon description.  credit: me :) ).

Check it out!  If you do buy a copy, please review it on Amazon!  The reviews will help get the book noticed and this won't be my only kid's book...eventually :)

Back to not running:
I chose to stop running for a few months.  My left knee, the one that was surgically repaired in May, was acting up.  It wasn't the same kind of pain, though, that led me to the dr's.  It hurt often, even when walking.  When crawling (when I play with my cat or games with my kids) I would have a sharp pain in my kneecap.  Since I've taken the time off, the pain slowly went away.  Now, it's completely gone!  I have no pain when crawling or walking!  So, once the snow clears, I'll be back out on a walk/run program. 

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Doing stuff to keep me outta trouble :)

Hey All!  I had tried to order a Kindle case from a company, but they sent the wrong thing twice.  So, I decided that I would use what I have lying around the house to make my own.  I had an old journal (11 years old) that I loved, but hadn't really ever used.  It was hand made in Tibet.  My wife gave it to me for my birthday in 2003 (as noted on the inside cover).
Closed, before- I love the dowels for securing

Handmade paper- can't really see the naturalness of it

After taking out the paper- some at my desk, some in my writing bag for kids writing supplies

Took a while to get the size right.  I did, then dropped it...craperfic!

Cleaned up- some scraping with a razor to get the perfect fit!  Hot glue to hold it in place.

I can still reach all the right plugs and power button

Done!  It fits just right!!

In total, this project kept me out of trouble for about two hours :)  Now for some mischief!

P.S.: Sorry if you saw this on my writing blog :)

Saturday, January 11, 2014

I'm back!

Hi all,

I'm back on blogspot.  I saw no reason to continue to pay to publish this blog on wordpress.  I'm not running much either.  Both of those combined led me to coming back here.  I also got rid of my FB page in case you happen to venture there for it.

What will you see?  I still plan on posting delicious new recipes, running tips, and when I occasionally run- especially on how my knee reacts to it.  My dumbass knee is the reason I'm not running much.  Maybe someday in the future it'll let me run regularly again.

See you soon!

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Wellness Wedn...err, Sunday :)

Screw it!  Wellness Everyday!

We made a new soup today.  I'll link the recipe at the bottom with the changes we made in it. photos of it, but here's the empty blender :)

[caption id="attachment_811" align="aligncenter" width="375"]The Empty Blender The Empty Blenderingredients: (our adjustments)[/caption]

ingredients: (our adjustments)

  • 1 T Butter (olive oil, not butter)

  • 1 t Sesame Oil

  • 2 T Shallots, finely minced (we used onions)

  • 1/2 T Garlic (2 cloves), crushed

  • 1 1/2 T Ginger (2" knob), finely grated or crushed (for this and garlic, we used powdered)

  • optional- 2 pieces Bacon, diced (screw that stuff, it's bad for you)

  • 1 pkg Soy Beans (16oz)

  • 3 c Chicken or Vegetable Broth (add more for a lighter, more liquidy soup) (veggie for us)

  • 1 1/2 T Soy Sauce (skipped completely)

  • fresh cracked pepper and thinly sliced green onion for finish & garnish (no garnish for us...we ain't that fancy)


  1. On medium heat, melt butter with sesame oil in a sauce pan. (If using bacon, omit the butter and fry the bacon and sesame oil till the fat is rendered) Add shallots, garlic and ginger. Sauté until lightly golden and fragrant.

  2. Add soy beans, broth and soy sauce.  Cover and simmer for 20 minutes or until soy beans are tender (how fast or slow you simmer will affect the thickness of the soup. It is always a good idea to have extra broth in case you boil off too much liquid.)

  3. Put everything into a blender and puree until smooth. Return to sauce pan to keep warm.  Serve with fresh cracked pepper on top of each bowl and the thinly sliced green onion. Add a light stream of sesame oil or a  touch of sour cream or creme fraiche for extra tastiness.

  4. If the soup is too thick for you, add more broth until it reaches your desired consistency.

Here's the link for the original.

Overall?  It really was delicious!  It had a very sweet taste to it.  I added ground pepper to mine (I do love ground pepper in my soups).

Enjoy it!!