Thursday, January 31, 2019

19 for 2019: January Progress

We are one month into 2019 (That is crazy...right?) and I've made a little progress, not a ton, but a little.

4. Crochet a Blanket
I bought the yarn and picked the size of the blanket.

9. Read 65 Books
I finished 3, which means I'm already way behind.

10. Continue Mental 20
Just a part of daily life at this point.

12. Keep Training Ellie
She is doing so well with other dogs. We have had several very successful trips to the dog park. She had 2 training sessions and she learned Beg, Roll Over and Stand Tall.

15. $250,000 in Travel Agency Sales
I am at 12% of my goal.

16. Get New Glasses.
I had my eye doctor appointment and I ordered my glasses from Zenni, but I haven't received them yet.

17. Go Dairy/Gluten/Sugar Free 90% of the time.
I did a sugar reset, but then I went to Disney, so I am resetting again.

18. Get Pearl Earring Fixed.

And there we are! I actually made more progress than I thought when I started this post. Next month, I need to focus on my monthly tasks and bigger tasks!

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Jennie's Recipes: Chili

Who doesn't love a hot bowl of chili?

Over the years, I have adapted our chili recipe from others I have read. Its mild, but can be made spicier. We even love to make some spaghetti and serve the leftovers over spaghetti.

Jennie's Chili
1 lb hamburger
1 onion
3 cloves minced garlic
1 can dark red kidney beans
1 can diced tomatoes or Rotel for a bit more spice
1 can tomato sauce
2 tbsp tomato paste
1 packet McCormick chili mix
1 tsp cumin
Salt and Pepper to Taste

Brown the Hamburger and diced onion together. Add garlic. Cook for 30 seconds. Drain the hamburger. Add back to the pot.

Add the kidney beans, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, chili mix, cumin and salt and pepper. Stir together.

Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer. Simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add toppings and enjoy!

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

What's in my Disney Carry-On

There are so many things that people put in their carry on bags when they fly. For me, it depends on the trip. I always bring my makeup, Kindle and chargers...but the rest of my bag is very tailored to the destination.

Here what I am bringing in my bag for Walt Disney World. It's just a short flight, so we don't need a lot of snacks or entertainment options, but I wanted to carry on some of the special things I bought for the trip, like my ears.

 First up, is the Disney related stuff.

We are going to Disney After Hours on our arrival day and I wanted to make sure we had shirts to change into for the event, so I packed our Mickey and Minnie shirts.

I also have our Magic Bands and Magical Express information, some Disney Lipsmackers, my Minnie ears and fun buttons, as well as quarters and pennies for the penny press machines.

Next up is my make up and healthcare. I have my quart sized bag with makeup, perfume, eye drops, a tide pen, contacts and a mask I plan to do on the plane. 

In the floral bag, is my makeup brushes, blush and eyeshadow. I also have Exedrin migraine, tape I use to tape my feet, mints, flossers and medicine (unpictured).

Third, I have my cold weather gear...which seems weird to say about going to Disney World, but the weather on our arrival day will be chilly in the evening, so I needed a sweater, a tank top for under my T-shirt, gloves and a light scarf.

Lastly, I have my tech gear. I have my handheld tripod, headphones, travel phone case and my Kindle (unpictured).

I also will tuck my phone and wallet in the bag.

The bag I like to use for air travel is my Travelon Underseater wheeled bag. It fits under the seat in front of you on most airlines.

What do you like to carry on for your Disney World trip?

Monday, January 28, 2019

Motivational Monday: Be You

"Be You. The World with Adjust."

Growing up, my best friend was weird. She embraced her weird and people loved her for it. I know. I was one of them. And I saw a bevy of people enter her world and love her for being weird.

I was always so inspired by her bravery, that she seemed ok standing out of the crowd. I was always one who wanted to blend in and leave no real impression on people, so watching her be weird with people who she hadn't known very long was inspiring.

It has taken me years to embrace my own personal brand of weird. Age has brought me confidence, confidence that I wish I had had all those years ago.

So here I am. I love Disney and Gilmore Girls and sitcoms. I love cooking, taking care of my house, reading, traveling, and my dog. I love being a stay-at-home-wife and a travel agent. I love living in a rural area just outside of a vibrant, growing city. I love going to the movies, to plays, and to the symphony. I love checking things off a "To-Do" list. I love listening to podcasts. I am very excited about life in general and I have a tendency to forget the bad things. I love organizing. I love leading my band of friends to fun activities. I love learning. I hate concerts. I hate humidity. I hate peas.

What makes you weird?

Friday, January 25, 2019

Weekly Menu

I took my dog to the dog park today and she bullied an 8 month old tiny dog. Her owner said that the kennel we use is really good at training them to play well in a I'm pretty happy she is spending some time there soon.

Ok, on to the business of the day...the weekly menu...

Slow Cooker Buffalo Chicken by Real Food Dietitians
Easy Weeknight Chicken Spaghetti by A Reinvented Mom
Slow Cooker Hawaiian Chicken by Real Food Dietitians
Slow Cooker Coconut Curry with Chicken by Savory Lotus

Click here for a printable of this week's menu!

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Housewife Life: The Weekly Reset

For the past few months, one of my favorite YouTubers, Sam at Happily a Housewife, has been talking about doing a weekly reset. She sets aside some time over the weekend to reset the house, her purse, her planner, etc. It has had me thinking. Is there a way I can do a weekly reset? Is that something I need to do?

Usually by Monday morning our house is a tornado. My routines just fall apart when my husband is home. So Monday, which is laundry day, is usually a day that I piddle around the house...putting things away, doing things I skipped over the weekend...just general de-cluttering. Is that a weekly reset? I guess so.

Ideally, I would love to do a reset on Sunday, but Sundays are exhausting...

So, should I work in a weekly reset or should I just institute a weekend routine?

What do you do? Share below.

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Recipe Review: Slow Cooker Coconut Curry with Chicken

We tried the Slow Cooker Coconut Curry with Chicken from Savory Lotus this week and it was great! I usually don't like slow cooker recipes that require pre-cooking, however the way it made my house smell...I could do that again.

First you combine the spices.

Then you saute an onion. Add garlic, ginger, coconut milk, broth, salt and the spice mix.

Then, chop the sweet potato and cauliflower and add it to the slow cooker with the chicken.

Pour the coconut milk mix over and stir. Then cook for 6-7 hours on high.

My house smelled amazing. We served it with rice and it was delicious. My only note is to add a bit more salt and cayenne.

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

5 Things I'm looking forward to at Walt Disney World That Started January 18

Disney World is ramping up activities around the resorts for all of 2019! A whole slate of events started on Friday, January 18 and I am really excited to be able to take part in some of these fun things!

Here is what I am most excited for...

1. Meeting Mike and Sulley at Walt Disney Presents in Disney's Hollywood Studios

2. Meeting Edna Mode and dancing with Frozone at Pixar Place in Disney's Hollywood Studios

3. Celebrating Lion Kings 25th anniversary at Animal Kingdom with special photo opportunities

4. The "Move It! Shake Its! Mousekedance It! Street Party" at Magic Kingdom

5. The International Festival of the Arts at Epcot

For a full list of things that started on January 18, visit the Disney Parks Blog for more information.

And if you want to visit Walt Disney World (or Disney Land...or take a Disney Cruise), click here to request a free quote.

Monday, January 21, 2019

Motivational Monday: Chin Up

"Chin Up Princess, or the Crown Slips." - Anonymous

We are well into January now and real life is going to (or already has) set in. One of the things about real life is that it has a way of knocking you down a bit. Setbacks happen. As the year rolls along, it gets harder to keep your motivation high.

You know what...that is ok. Your crown (follow is going to slip. Things are going to get hard. So take a day or two (or three if necessary) to reset yourself and then chin up...

Remember that straightening your crown is way easier than bending down to pick it up and put it back on.

So keep your chin up, don't drop the crown. 

Friday, January 18, 2019

Weekly Menu

My favorite sounds in the evening are the running dishwasher and my husband and dog snoring while we watch television. It is so cozy!

This week's menu has several of my favorites and something I have never served, but really want to serve...BLTs. I like to surprise my husband with random things like that sometimes.

Links to the Recipes
Beef Ricotta Casserole by Carrie's Experimental Kitchen
Slow Cooker Italian Beef Sandwiches by Living with Landyn
Creamy Sausage and Spinach Pasta by Budget Bytes
Whole30 Sloppy Joes by Physical Kitchness

Click here for a printable of this week's menu.

Have a good weekend!

Thursday, January 17, 2019

Housewife Life: Top Five Dog Essentials

I've been a dog mom for about three months now and I have tried a lot of products! Here are my (and Ellie's) top 5 favorite products.

1. A spiral feeding bowl
When we feed her out of her regular food bowl, she eats in less than 30 seconds. Then, she throws up or burps. So we got here this bowl and it takes her almost four minutes to eat her food!

2. Kong Jumbler Ball
This is her favorite toy by far! My mother-in-law got it for Ellie for Christmas and she is wild for this toy!

3. 30 foot leash
Our trainer recommended this and it has changed our walks! She get so much more out of the walks and it is so much easier to walk her with this leash.

4. Cozy Blanket
This blanket is great for her crate and we also use it to mark her spot on our bed. She loves her blanket!

5. Crate from Amazon Basics
This crate is awesome. It folds down in like 30 seconds and then pops back up in like 15 seconds and they take no space in the car if you need to travel with it.

And those are our favorite products!

What are your favorite products?

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Kitchen Tips with Jennie: Cutting Cherry Tomatoes

I can't take credit for this...I learned it on The Chew (RIP).

If you need to cut a lot of cherry tomatoes, put them all on the top of a lid, then put a second lid on upside down on top of the tomatoes and use a bread knife to slice through all the tomatoes.

Here are some pictures to help make sense of that.

Tomatoes on the top of a lid. See the lip of the lid. You can see an empty lid at the top of the picture.

And I took the second lid and flipped it upside down and put it on top of the tomatoes. So you are looking at the part of the lid that would be inside the container if it was on the container.
And you put the knife between the lids...hold the lid down and slice back and forth.

And all those tomatoes are sliced!!!!
It's amazing! 20 seconds instead of a few minutes! Seriously. One of the best tricks.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

My Disney Park Bag Essentials

I envy the people who can go into a Disney Park with just what they have on them. I like to bring everything that I could possibly need to be comfortable for the time I will be in the park.

So what are those things? I'm here to share that list with you today!

1. Personal Care Items
Deodorant wipes, feminine wipes, body spray, Lactaid pills, Advil, Tide Pen, antibacterial baby wipes, and eye drops.

2. Park Specific
Ponchos, Bandanas, nice pennies and quarters for the penny pressing machines, and Ziploc bags.

3. Tech Essentials
External Battery and appropriate charging cords.

4. Weather Necessities
March-December: Handheld Fans, and Cooling Towels.
December-February: Layers.

And that is it!

What am I missing? What do you think I should leave out of my bag?

Monday, January 14, 2019

Motivational Monday: Progress is Progress

"It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop." -Confucius

So many times when people are working toward a goal and they plateau...they quit. I'm totally guilty of this too!

So many times over the years, I have quit my "get healthy" program because the weight did not just melt away. For the past 15 months, I have been focusing on creating a sustainable healthy lifestyle. I've lost a few more pounds since my initial weight loss...but I haven't gained weight back. Which is a huge win for me.

It is so important to remember that progress is progress, even if it is slow.

What is something you have quit because you were progressing slowly?

Friday, January 11, 2019

Weekly Menu

Let's start off this year right! I hope I can make myself put this together for you every week!!!

I've included some of my favorites and some things I want to make in the next few weeks.

For a printable, click here.

Have a great week everyone! Happy Birthday Dad!!!

Thursday, January 10, 2019

Housewife Life: Ordinary Time

As I took my Christmas decorations down this year, I was really sad. I said goodbye to them and really looked forward to seeing them again later this year. It was a weird feeling I don't remember.

But now that the holidays are officially over, it's time to get down to business on 2019.

As you have probably read by now, I have a list of 19 (+) things I want to accomplish in 2019. This week, I am taking the first step to getting new glasses...I have an eye doctor appointment.

I am doing some big things for my travel agent business...I am heading to Walt Disney World for a few days to try some things I have never tried before and when I get back, I have my first in person networking event. I am possibly starting a YouTube channel about Disney and other travel...I'm a little nervous about that and have been practicing filming as I walk and watching vlogs to see what I dislike in other people's vlogs.

I decided the other day that I need to do a 19 for 2019 in regards to my mother-in-law to help keep me on track and remember to handle certain things for her. I want to make one for Christmas to help me plan Christmas a little bit better.

I don't know about you, but I am always so inspired and feel so creative in January.

What do you have on your mind this month?

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Recipe Review: Stuffed Pepper Soup

I tested Stuffed Pepper Soup...spoiler alert...we loved it!

My husband has some favorite recipes that his mom always made...and I have never been able to conquer's not as difficult as the infamous "Jennie can't make her mom's potato salad" conundrum, but it's still an issue.

One of his favorites is stuffed peppers. So when I found this much, much easier version from Real Food with Jessica...that was paleo and Whole30 friendly...I knew I had to try it.

And I knew that I would love it and my husband would hate it.

The recipe is really straightforward, you just sub in riced cauliflower for the traditional rice and serve the soup over the cauliflower.

Delicious. Absolutely delicious...and my husband agreed!!!!

So if you want an easier, Whole30 version of a family favorite...visit Real Food with Jessica and TRY THIS SOUP!

Let me know if you try it too!