The Year of Twelve – Part 1

Since it’s January 29, it’s definitely time to tell you about my New Year’s resolution.

Many of you will remember that 5 or so years ago I resolved to lose 100 pounds. And I would like to take this opportunity to tell you that I exceeded that goal. I’ve actually lost 40 pounds 3 times in the past 5 years which equals 120 pounds. Suck it haters! I’ve also regained that 40 pounds each time. (Insert sad trombone sound here.)

But if you think public humiliation will stop me from a never ending quest to fit into my jeans, well friend… you must be new here.

That being said, my resolutions for 2019 have little to do with weight loss. In fact, as I began thinking about things I’d like to change in my life, I was shocked that the things that came to mind were strangely unrelated to being fat. Don’t be scared for me though. I’m still focused on improving my health. I’m not elbow deep in a box of doughnuts or anything.

As I contemplated my years of failure to achieve a “New Me”, I decided that maybe I could focus on changing 12 small things in my life. They aren’t earth shaking, monumental goals. Just 12 small habits or behaviors that might (gasp!) actually improve my life. The first one started by accident. I was shopping with my daughters and my oldest Savannah was trying to persuade her sister to start a daily habit of using body lotion. “I challenge you to try it Kaylee, she said. It will change your life.” Kaylee and I both just stared at her. See, we don’t actually talk this way. It was like Tony Robbins had invaded my child. Lotion is gonna change our lives? So even though we made fun of her about it for the rest of the trip, I threw a bottle in my cart. After my shower, I slathered on the lotion but didn’t think I was creating some massive change in the state of my life. And then this weird thing happened. I kept doing it. Every time I showered, I put the lotion on. At one point (because I’m a lunatic) I even timed how long the lotioning process took. 2 minutes.

via GIPHY

I realized that I’m really good at grand intentions but I suck at the small stuff. This 2 minute lotion habit morphed into a 5 minute daily regimen. (I added facial wash and moisturizer. I’m old. This is necessary.) I’ve been doing this daily without much thought for almost 2 months now. My skin feels like silk. Seriously, if you see me in public, rub me. You won’t believe how soft I am. And this stupid lotion habit has taught me something. I can change. It might be in small increments but it can happen.

And now I’m ready to tackle a new goal for February. It’s as goofy as lotion. So come back in a month and we’ll see what happened.

Jesus ain’t a Bell Boy

Jesus ain’t a Bell Boy

 

Ok  look…I’m not gonna talk about politics (right now.) But we have to discuss this picture.

First let me say this. I have a lot of friends and acquaintances that aren’t Christians. And all them know that me and Jesus are BFFs. Therefore, I have to answer to all these people for all the stupid stuff my Christian brethren decide to post on social media. And can I just say that ya’ll are posting a lot of crap that I cannot even explain, much less defend?

So let’s just talk about this ridiculous meme my beloved aunt (she divorced my uncle over 2 decades ago but she’s still my aunt because that’s how it works in my family) put on Facebook last week. Completely disregard the Obama/Trump stuff. Look at Jesus in this pic. Just look at him. Now ask yourself this simple question :

WHY WOULD JESUS NEED 4 SUITCASES???????

Jesus was basically a homeless preacher. I can’t prove it biblically but I’d be shocked to find out he owned more than one pair of sandals. The Bible makes a big ole deal about his seamless robe which leads me to believe he probably didn’t have a closet full of them.  So assume the literal KING OF KINGS could be ‘kicked out’ by some American President (spoiler alert : he can’t be). I’m pretty sure he wouldn’t need to pack up four pieces of luggage to make the trip.

And sure, I get what my aunt was trying to convey with this post but we’ve got to do a better job folks. True Christians need to be about the work God has given us and that work is inviting people to discover Jesus. Our job is not to create weird a weird meme Jesus and then try to shame people into thinking they aren’t “True Christians” if they don’t share it.

I’m back

via GIPHY

Actually I never left.  I’ve just been bottling up all my thoughts and feelings for a long time now instead of blogging them. This was…a mistake.

I think that knowing people were actually reading this thing gave me a bit of stage fright. I started to really care what people thought of me. This blog was always just supposed to be my musings and nonsense unfiltered by my need to impress anyone. And to that it must return.

So if you read what I write, that’s great. I hope you like it. If you don’t, I suggest just starting your own blog. It can be cathartic.

I’m going to attempt to remove the subscription option. So if I’m able to do that, you won’t get my posts delivered to your inbox anymore. Again, the idea that my goofy thoughts on Jesus, weight loss and sausage balls was crowding your inbox made me feel weird. Also I have a bunch of family memory type things I need to catch up on here and while I know most of you really like my kids, no one needs to be subjected to slideshows of them on a daily basis.

The Sausage Ball Manifesto

I feel as if I have far too much to say.  If I could string even 2 coherent thoughts together, I could write a book about politics, religion or 18th century English literature.  But I can’t.  So let’s talk about appetizers.

Jesus is the reason for the season.  No doubt.  He’s first place.  But sausage balls are definitely the first runner up.  They are the perfect appetizer.  Good hot or cold.  Very portable.  And they are only for Christmas.  (You might be able to get away with making a batch for New Year’s Eve but don’t post pictures of it on Instagram.) No matter where you are invited for the holidays, you cannot go wrong with sausage balls. (Unless you are visiting people who don’t eat pork.  I am a respecter of all religions and faiths but I just can’t conceive of a loving God that would keep me from sausage.  Amen.) Usually your hostess will attack you at the door, whisk the container from your hands and start shoving the delicious morsels in her mouth while she drops your coats in the master bedroom.  Once your popularity as ‘the bringer of the sausage balls’ grows, people will invite you to parties just for your delicious offering.  This is a small price to spread joy to the world each holiday season.  Trust me when I tell you this.  Never make a single batch.  I make one round to shove in the mouths of my husband and children to buy me enough time to make 2 more real quick and hide for later.

Here’s the recipe.

1lb hot Tennessee Pride Sausage (sure you can use another brand but why?) (no, you can’t use mild or sage.  Don’t ask why.  You just can’t.)

2 cups of sharp shredded cheese (grate it yourself, trust me)

2 cups of Bisquick.

Mix it together.  This part is kind of a pain to be honest. But it can’t be helped.  Don’t even think about using your Kitchen-aid mixer here. Some things in life are worth fighting for.  Sausage balls are one of them.  Once it’s all mixed together, form it into balls, throw it into a 375 degree oven and watch the magic happen.  Cook them for about 20 minutes.  You want them to be golden but not real brown.

The key to this delectable concoction is it’s simplicity.  Don’t be led astray by internet idiots (other than me)  who will try to convince you that this recipe is somehow lacking.  People do this nonsense all the time.  I blame the Allrecipe website and the pervasive rampant narcissism in today’s culture.  Every dang body thinks they can ‘improve’ on stuff if they give it their own special twist.  To this I say “NO SIR!” This recipe doesn’t need a special cheese (not cream cheese, not cheez-whiz, not organic white cheddar made by Welsh coal miners), it doesn’t need grass fed chorizo and it does not need herbs and spices.  I was raised to be a lady but if I attend a party and you bring sausage balls containing thyme, oregano or rosemary, I will fight you.  I’m sorry but you’ve got to stand for something in this crazy world and no spices in sausage balls is the mountain I’ve chosen to die upon.  Also, don’t try to make this deal harder than it has to be.  I once heard a woman suggest that we make our own Bisquick.  What blithering idgit would even come up with such an idea?  What does your daily life look like that it includes enough free time to make your own Bisquick?  This gal’s toilets better be sparkling and all her closets completely organized alphabetically is all I can say.  I will mark ‘learn to tap dance’ and ‘re shingle my roof ‘ off my bucket list before making my own Bisquick.

They even make a pre-made sausage balls now.  You can find them in your freezer section.  And by all means, get you some.  Assuming you hate your family and the entire reason for the holidays of course.  Before you even ask, let me admit that no, I have not tried them.  Look, I’ve never tried ritualistic Satan worship either but I’m pretty sure it ain’t my cup of tea.  But the bigger question you need to ask yourself here is “Am I really too busy to mix three ingredients in a bowl?”  Because if the answer is yes?  Well, I’m not trying to tell you how to live but I think you might be too dang busy.

Friends, we live in a hard and scary world.  Sausage balls will not fix that.  But it might make you feel better for a few minutes and what more can we hope for in 2016?

The 1st Day of my 43rd Year

The 1st Day of my 43rd Year

So after no blogging for far too long it felt a bit too narcissistic to post on my actual birthday.  So I waited until the day after.

I can’t say I’m sorry to wave bye bye to my 42nd year.  It was less than awesome.  In the past 365 days, I have injured both knees (not at the same time cuz that would have been far too convenient!).  The first caused lots of pain but healed nicely with physical therapy.  The second one was way more annoying.  Surgical repair.  6 weeks on crutches (which, of course I didn’t do) and now I’m facing 8 to 12 weeks of physical therapy.  Let me make sure you understand me.  In the big scheme of things this is no big deal.  I have friends who have battled cancer, kidney disease and a host of terrible health issues.  I know that a  chubby girl who can’t stop falling and screwing up her knees is not the stuff of sympathy worthy posts. But to fully understand the roller coaster of depression, shame, anger and fury I have been on for the past year, well…the injuries are kind of important.  Having been lucky enough to live most of my life pain free, I can tell you this.  I’m just not tough enough to have chronic health problems.  My hat’s off to those of you who battle this every day.  I now have a new appreciation for people addicted to pain meds.  I totally get it now.  Because, if we’re being honest, we’re all addicted to not being in pain.  But most of us don’t have to prove it every day.  And pain is just so exhausting.  No one seems to talk about this.  I used to think a lot about a lot of things.  Poetry, music, art, politics.  As an introvert, my life is lived mainly in my head and there’s just a lot going on up there.  I am a ridiculously interesting person in my mind.  I rarely get bored.  But this year most of those interesting thoughts were replaced with one thought…”Ouch”. When it hurts to walk, sleep, sit or stand, you just tend to focus on that.  And it wasn’t far into this adventure that I realized no one wants to hear that your knee hurts 20 times a day.  I totally get this but can I tell you that a person in pain wants to mention this 3000 times a day so if you know someone like this, try to cut em a break.

 

So, what else happened this year?

I discovered I can’t eat dairy.  This is literally worse than the knee problems.  More on the Whole 30 and how it changed my life but I still hate it in a later post.

Emily got a place of her own.  She’s happy as a clam and living quite independently.  So yay!  But I miss Kayden so much.  So Boo!

I got to visit Ireland and France as a tag-a-long on one of Kevin’s business trips.  Once in a lifetime experience.  Still seems like I dreamed it.

Savannah graduated high school.  Got her first real job over the summer and then started college this fall.  I saved my mental breakdown until she moved into the dorms.  She comes home every weekend but I still feel like the world is off kilter without her living at home.

My website is chugging along.  We were featured in an article in the National media.  We continue to publish a weekly article in an actual newspaper that no one probably reads.  We aren’t generating an income yet but Lauren and I are putting our profits into a retirement account which is ironic as mompreneurs never actually get to stop working.

We’ve attended two churches in the past 2 years and both of the pastors have quit for different reasons.  I don’t blame myself obviously but I’m positive God is trying to teach me something.

The kids are all ok.  Not without struggles and challenges of course (are we ever?)  But we’ve had worse years for sure.

I am still married.  (I never take this for granted.)

God loves me as much today as he did 366 days ago.  ( I never take this for granted either.)

 

So here we go 43.