My pain has been back, maybe because of the weather and in turn, the shoveling due to the weather, or maybe it's just back because that's how my pain goes. Pain never helps brighten a mood. I need to find a new doctor. The practice I was going to has changed drastically over the past 2 years. In the beginning, I got great relief, but the past six months, I've just been treated like dollar signs rather than a patient. So, off to find a new one. In the meantime, I did just start a new yoga class. My neck hurt so badly the rest of the first day, but, since then, my neck has felt better than it has in 6 months! I'm taking that as a win.
I'm sad to say that even though I started this year with a gratitude journal, it sort of fell by the wayside for February. Though I'm not journaling every day, I am thankful for so much in my life and I'm really trying to find positives while I'm in this negative mood. One positive is that my kids and I have been having a great time together. With so much non-stop time together, people who know me well would think I'm losing my patience with my kids. The opposite is true though. Yes, I do lose my patience at times, everyone does, but, in the big picture, I've actually developed more patience and understanding during these months of being stuck in the house. For that, I am grateful.
Another positive is that I started reading again! Yay! I love to read. I used to read all the time. The past couple of years, I haven't been reading as much. These past two months, I think I've read more books than I have in the past 2 years...or at least close. The funny thing is that my biggest problem is having books pulled off the Kindle because I am reading so many I don't have time to finish them all in the time I have them for! I started to get my Goodreads account updated, but that's taking much longer than I had hoped. That's mainly due to me only updating kids books, but I feel like it's still progress. In fact, I think I like tracking what my kids have been reading and what they like better than tracking what I have been reading!
One big thing that happened during these two months of neverending winter is that Sunshine is now registered for Kindergarten. I can't believe my baby is going to be in big kid school come the fall. She has always been "older" than she is. I mean, come on, she has a big brother she has to keep up with, but still, when I step back and watch her, I can't believe she's only got a few months until she really starts her education journey. This is also going to be the first time ever that she and her best friend will be separated. I'm really not exaggerating when I say that. She and her best friend have been together since Sunshine was born (her bff is 4 months older). Aside from always seeing each other to play, they have also been in the same class for the past two years. They see each other no less than three times a week, but it's usually more. Next year, her bff goes a different school. Yesterday, Sunshine figured out that she will not see H every day and she had a mini meltdown. She drew all sorts of pictures. One wasn't completely perfect and she broke down crying and was so very sad it wasn't going to be wonderful for her best friend. I assured her that she and H will still see each other. It's going to be hard transition, but we'll all figure it out.
During the first couple of snow days we had in January, I was feeling super crafty. All three of the grandma's birthdays fall in January and February. So, we made them gifts (to go along with our homemade Christmas). I couldn't post pictures though until everyone got theirs.
This one was the keeper. It was so good. So sweet, but so good. Only problem I had with it was that my ham was too big and I need to cut it, in several ways, to get it to fit in my crock pot. I knew I didn't want a huge ham, but I also couldn't find anything smaller at my local grocery store than a 5.5 lb ham. Another warning, the pineapples are SUPER sweet when they come out. Really good, but you can't eat a lot, or at least my family couldn't.
Not a hit. Not bad, but just not good. I even added a bit more Thyme and lemon and it was still pretty bland.
Again, this one wasn't horrible, but it was very bland. Just not a lot of flavor. I guess we don't actually like to taste our meat in our house. We like things where the flavor of plain old meat is masked.
I'm not sure when I'm going to realize that my family just doesn't like cooking with balsamic vinegar. I really liked these, but I was the only one. I tried a recipe similar to this before, but this one was better. I guess it doesn't matter though since my family won't touch it.
Yet another failed chicken recipe. The main issue with this was that it was dry. I mean very, very dry. I even knew better than to follow the recipe, which said to cook it on low for 6-8 hours. Instead, I did it on low for 4 hours and it was still super dry. The beer gave it a different sort of flavor which may have been good, but we couldn't even tell since we had to smother it in something, anything, to make it actually edible.
Once again, I was the only one that liked this. I thought it was very flavorful. In fact, it's one of the best beef stroganoff recipes I've had. Only thing I would change if I were to do this again, which I won't since no one else liked it, would be to use more beef. I used 1 lb (recipe calls for 1-2 lbs) and I was fishing for meat in the sauce.
I made these on one of the many snow days. Since I had eggnog and time, I tried two different recipes. The first ones I made were the big ones, Eggnog Coffee Cake Muffins. The second ones were Two Ingredient Eggnog Muffins. Both were good. Votes were split right down the middle on which ones were better (not just our family, but neighbor votes as well). Personally, I liked the Eggnog Coffee Cake Muffins better, but the others were much easier to make!
Sadly, we're gearing up for yet another big snow storm. I'm really hoping it blows over or at least starts later than predicted because Sunshine has her dance recital. They are dancing to Let It Go from Frozen. We will brave the snow so she can dance her little heart out, but I'd just rather it not snow. Either way, we are all happy and content, even if we're just a little stir crazy. I am so fortunate to have such great, easy going kids. Someone needs to remind me of that when one of them is throwing a fit.