Wednesday, March 31, 2010


I have been sick for over a week and finally went to see the Dr. yesterday.  Just as I suspected I had asthmatic bronchitis again.  This happens at least once a year and starts with a simple cold.  I have an antibiotic and a steroid so I am already feeling somewhat better.

We have been sticking to the South Beach Diet like we should.  It has become fairly normal to us now and wow do we feel better (except for the bronchitis).  :o)  Prayerfully we will be smart enough to continue eating this way and get the weight off and keep it off.  As of today my hubby has lost 20 pounds and I have lost 19 pounds.  It has taken 6 weeks to lose this weight, which is slower than we have lost in the past.  We are older and probably move way less than we used to…LOL  Either way, we are pleased and psyched.

I am off to Joann Fabrics tomorrow to buy a pattern and some cute fabric.  I plan to make our little granddaughters matching sun suits for summer.  I love it when Joann’s runs their patterns for 99 cents each since they are normally between $10 and $15, which is just crazy..I would never pay that for a pattern but evidently some people do.  :o)

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Found an Amazing Etsy Shop

The other day I was checking out some of the great shops on Etsy and I discovered this incredible fabric florist shop.  The owners of this shop make the most amazing fabric plants and leaves.  I have never seen anything like this before, so I thought I would share this great find with my blog readers.  Please check out this shop and I would love to hear your thoughts on these cool plants.  :o)




Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Wheat Pasta

We have been doing great following the “South Beach Diet”.  I have lost 14 pounds and Steve has lost a bit more.  We are feeling so much better and have more energy.  The first two weeks we didn’t eat any flour foods (breads, pasta, ect), starchy vegetables or fruit.  We have introduced fruits back into our diet and things like sweet potatoes, rutabaga ect.  We do eat a slice of whole wheat or rye bread once in a while.  I love wheat bread and it is so much better for us.  The problem I have is with the wheat pasta products.  It doesn’t seem to matter what I make with wheat pasta, whether it is spaghetti, wheat bow tie pasta made into a Greek salad, or most recently I made a tuna macaroni salad…..usually my macaroni salads are well received in our house…most of this particular salad went down the garbage disposal.  I managed to eat two of the little shell macaronis and all I could taste was wheat.  I seasoned it well and used two cans of tuna….but the wheat taste was so strong.  I told Steve that I think every once in a while, when we are hungry for some pasta, we should just make a small amount of the white pasta.  The other foods we have been eating are great.  I love fresh spinach and we eat a lot of that.

We had a C.S.E. meeting for Bradly at his school on Monday.  The meeting went so well.  He created and presented his own power point presentation explaining his disability which is “E.D. or “Emotional Disturbance”.  He has learned how his disability relates to some of the problems he has in school, in his relationships and his everyday life.  One of the new services he will have for 7th grade is a program on the computer which will read  back whatever he has written, aloud to him.  This allows him to be able to pick up on his choppy or run-on sentences and make corrections.  The teacher did bring a sample of his writing from Sept. and a current sample…what a huge difference.  This new technology should help him to improve even more.  We are so proud of Bradly for the hard work he has done trying to improve his problems and for trying to understand his problems.  :o)

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Announcing the Winner

I am pleased to announce that “StunningAnnaK” is the winner of the “Spring Break” purse I was giving away on my blog.  Congratulations Anna.  I will ship out her new purse as soon as I get her shipping address.  :o)  I thought it would be nice to also share her Etsy shop with my readers.

Thank you to everyone who participated in my give-away and I hope everyone has a great week.  Spring has actually arrived!  :o)


Friday, March 19, 2010

Tooth Fairy Pillows

I got 5 new tooth fairy pillows finished yesterday and even got the pics taken.  It felt great to have 5 new items to list on my Arelel Designs 2 shop.  I have another 5 I am working on.  Walmart did not have any white embroidery floss, so I had to borrow from my mom.  I like to do the hand appliqué while watching t.v. and then I go to my studio to finish them up on my sewing machine.

One of our past foster daughters who went home over a year ago is coming for a visit this weekend.  We had her sister here last week as she had gotten suspended from school and her dad works so there was no one to watch her at home.  It was so nice having her here and I know we will have fun with her sister this weekend…..they really need some mom attention and loving.  The boys love when the girls come to visit.  Nick still has a hard time understanding why they don’t live at “home” anymore (meaning our home).  Considering the girls lived with us over a year and a half and Nick is only 8 now, I can see how that would be confusing.

Our daughter Rachel is off to Hamilton, Ontario, Canada for the weekend.  She is going to visit our daughter Megan and her hubby Scott. They always have a great time together and I am so glad our kids are close.  Rachel is also planning a trip to Houston, TX to visit our son Steve in June.  Her and Steve had a wonderful time when she went down to see him last year.

Here are some of the pics of the new tooth fairy pillows.  This is the link to my shop if you would like to see the rest of them.       

sport tfp 2

hannah tfp 3

tfp 1

tfp 2

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Corned Beef and Cabbage.

We had our traditional corned beef and cabbage dinner in celebration of St. Patrick’s Day (and just because we love it), on Saturday rather than yesterday.  We cooked our corned beef with cabbage, carrots and rutabaga.  Normally we  cook potatoes also, but since we are eating low carb, we omitted the potatoes.  We had just enough corned beef left to slice thin and make open faced Rubén's on a slice of dark rye bread for lunch on Sunday.   Rachel and I skipped the sauerkraut, but Steve had it on his.  They were fantastic.

I have been feeling the effects of my exercise on the “Gazelle”.  I am assuming since I am feeling the pain, that I must be doing it right.  :o)  Now, I just want my efforts to start showing.  I must admit that I do feel better and have way more energy thanks to eating low carb and exercising……I really do hate the exercising part though…LOL

I did complete the two drawstring bags I was working on on Tuesday and I got the pics taken and the purses listed in my Etsy shop.  I am now working on 10 new Tooth Fairy pillows for my Arelel Designs 2 shop.  Tooth Fairy pillows sell fairly consistently, so I thought it was time to add some new ones with different fabrics.  I have to buy more white embroidery floss because I can get all of them made.  Here are a couple of pics of my new drawstring purses.  :o)

polka dot skull 1

zebra 1





Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Getting up in the Dark Again

It was so much nicer last week when I was up at 6:15 a.m. and it was actually daylight.  Saturday night we had to turn our clocks ahead for “Daylight Savings Time”, and now I am getting up in the dark again.  I know it will be nicer having the extra daylight in the evening, but it was great to start the day in the light!!

I have been working on two new drawstring purses.  One is zebra print with a bright pink lining and the other is a cute girly skull print with the same pink lining.  I am hoping to have them finished today and listed by this evening.

If you haven’t entered the contest for the Spring purse, don’t hesitate.  Leave me a comment that you already are a follower or that you just became one.  Check the other ways to score an extra entry below. :o)

We babysat our darling little granddaughters on Friday.  Emma waved at me when she got here…yes I know it was a fluke, but I enjoy it anyway.  :o)

Don’t forget to check out my daughter Megan’s new blog.  She has some great low carb recipes complete with pictures.  I love it when I can see a pic of what the recipe is supposed to look like.  She would love to have to stop by.  :o)

Thursday, March 11, 2010


Hey, I am finally getting around to sponsoring my first “blog give-a-way.”  I have been wanting to do this for quite some time and figured this would be a great way to celebrate the arrival of Spring. I am giving away a cute bag I made using a pretty madras plaid fabric and a recycled t-shirt that says, “What Happens on Spring Break, Stays on Spring Break”.  The interior of the bag is lime green with a zippered pocket made of the madras fabric.

It is easy to enter and you may have a total of four entries.  All entries will go into a large can with a lid.  Entries will be accepted no later than midnight, EST on March 19th.  On March 20th, I will randomly draw one entry from the can…this person will be the winner of the bag.  When you make an entry, you MUST include your e-mail address so that I can notify you if you were to win.  I will also post the winner on my blog on March 20th.

Here are the 4 ways you can submit an entry.

1)  Follow my blog.  If you are already a follower, let me know and that will count as an entry.

2)  Go to my Etsy store and pick your favorite item in my shop.  Come back to my blog and post the link to your favorite item.  This will count as entry #2.

3)  Twitter about my blog give-a-way and come back to my blog and post the link….hence, entry #3.

4)  Share the information about my blog give-a-way with your Facebook friends.  Come back to my blog and post the link and there will be entry #4. 

Join the fun and win yourself a cool new purse for Spring.  Here are a few pics of the purse.





Monday, March 8, 2010

9 Pounds in Two Weeks

We have moved from phase 1 to phase 2 today on South Beach Diet.  I lost 9 pounds in two weeks and Steve lost 10 pounds.  Rachel and Megan did well too, but I can’t remember their exact losses.  I must say it feels good to be in control of my eating again.  This diet is wonderful for my diabetes (which I had been in denial of up until a couple of months ago).  I would love it if my insulin levels would stay within a good range and maybe down the road I won’t need medication.

I made up a new recipe yesterday that we all enjoyed.  I call it “Greek Meatloaf”.  I used ground turkey and added some small pieces of fresh spinach and some feta cheese.  I used a couple of eggs, salt, pepper, Italian seasoning and a couple of TBSP. of Chavetta’s Italian dressing.  About 10 minutes before it came out of the oven, I drained a can of petite diced canned tomatoes and spread them over the top.  We had fried mushrooms and zucchini latkes with it.  It was a fantastic meal, and I wish I would of taken a picture, but I was too hungry…LOL

I am heading to the basement to workout on our Gazelle Freestyle Trainer.  Megan bought it when she lived in Cape Cod and says it is too big to haul to Canada.  I like it because it is low impact and you can set your own speed.  It is elliptical and it is one exercise i don’t mind too much.  Of course I can’t do it for very long yet, but a little is better than none.  :o)

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Nick Had His First Invite to a Friends House

This is huge!!  Nick was invited to spend a couple of hours at the home of his best friend, Vicky, who rides his bus.  They have been trying to orchestrate this visit for about 3 weeks now and Nick was over the moon excited about going.  The amusing part is that he was sure he should wear a white shirt and a tie, and he figured Vicky would be wearing a dress.  Nick was disappointed to discover that he would not be dressing up after all.  The plan is that they will watch one of Vicky’s “Spiderman” movies, and then call so he can get a ride home.  We are keeping our fingers crossed so that he can go again sometime.  Vicky will come here to visit next time.

Our daughter Megan, who has been doing “South Beach Diet” also, and actually started almost a week before we did, has been experimenting with some low carb recipes.  Megan decided to take pictures of the dishes she creates and write a blog about her low carb food adventures.  She will be honest about the success of each recipe she tries and also include the recipes.  If you are interested in low carb recipes or are following  '”The South Beach Diet”, you might want to check out her blog.  :o)

Friday, March 5, 2010

The Wait is Over

I am so happy and relieved to report that my biopsy results came back yesterday and I am fine.  I really thought I was, but the wait is nerve-racking.  I am feeling very thankful for my good health and I have been really trying to eat healthier and hopefully maintain good health.  I wasn’t sure if I should even mention that we have been on “The South Beach Diet” once again.  Last year when we were doing the diet, we fell off the wagon and never seemed to get back on.  We have been on phase 1 for almost 2 weeks and we are feeling so much better and have even  dropped some weight.

I thought I would share this wonderful recipe that my daughter, Megan found.  We had this for dinner last night and it was a huge hit.  I wish I would have taken a picture of the finished casserole because it was rather awesome looking.  Here is the recipe.


1 spaghetti squash (mine was 2 pounds)

1 pound ground turkey breast

minced garlic to taste

1/2 large onion, finely chopped

1/2 of a bell pepper (any color) diced

1-28 oz. can diced tomatoes (I use petite diced)

fresh sliced mushrooms (optional)

salt and pepper to taste

1 teas. olive oil or spray

Italian seasoning to taste or oregano and basil

1 cup shredded cheddar cheese or shredded  parmesan cheese.  You can use feta if you prefer.


Poke holes in squash and microwave so that the squash is a bit crunchy and not mushy. The time will depend on the size of your squash.  When the squash is cool enough, cut in half the long way and remove seeds.  Carefully scrape out all the “spaghetti” strands and place in a bowl (this can be done earlier in the day if you wish).    

In a large skillet, brown the ground turkey breast in the oil and add the  onion and garlic, mushrooms, bell pepper and salt and pepper.  Cook until tender and add the tomatoes and Italian seasoning.  Simmer about 5 minutes and then add the squash strands and mix well.  Simmer a few more minutes and then place into a 9x13 glass baking pan that has been sprayed with cooking spray.  Cover the top with the cheese of your choice.  I used fresh grated parmesan and a bit of mozzarella and some shredded cheddar.  

Bake 35-40 minutes at 350 degrees until the cheeses browned a bit and the casserole is bubbling.                         

My Etsy Shop