Category Archives: Uncategorized

Updates Galore

I am currently dictating this entry via the microphone on my iPhone 5s, so forgive me if there are some mistakes. Even though I have not updated my blog for like five months I have been doing very well on all of my goals. Well, almost all of my goals. I definitely need to work on forming the habit of wearing my mouthguard at night and also flossing my teeth. I work one overnight shift per week at my job and, during that, I am able to go through my list of 80 different things that I want to work on this year of being 24 years old. This has been a really great way of keeping me on track and reminding me of all this things that I want to accomplish this year.

I want to review some of the things that I have accomplished so far. I went shooting at the shooting range twice and I shot guns! This was a very nerve-racking but also adrenaline filled experience. I am proud to say that I am now not as frightened of gunshots as I had been previously, so I called this a big victory. I also had the pleasure of going downhill skiing for my very first time and it was extremely exciting. With the help of my boyfriend, I was actually able to progress over the eight hours that we skied to the black diamond slopes. I am still slightly in off of that fact and that I had so much courage to try something new and scary. I have also been working toward a lot of different fitness goals. For example, I joined a gym and I have been regularly working out with my running, biking, and swimming to prepare for a triathlon in August. I also completed a swimming class at the local YMCA and I progressed so much during my class. My times were so much faster at the end were so much faster than at the beginning. I have also been working really hard on forming healthy eating habits. For example, I stopped eating cheese and pizza entirely during the Lent season. Even though I’m going to start eating cheese again in about a week, I learned that I had previously depended on cheese to get protein in my diet and that’s not healthy at all. I have found a lot of healthy alternative foods and I feel really great. I have a lot of energy! Obviously, one of the items on my list was to purchase a smart phone and to figure out how to use it in a way that would enhance my life. So, I decided to buy an iPhone 5s and, wow. I have not looked back! I am still discovering new features daily. I am particularly excited about this phone’s ability to dictate what I say. It’s amazing! Maybe I was previously just completely behind the times in technology, but I seriously cannot believe that this phone has not made a single mistake in the entire time that I have been dictating this entry.

There are a few items on my list that are going to be more difficult than the others for me to cross off. For example, I do not know when I am going to be able to go bungee jumping or skydiving or air ballooning. Those things kind of terrify me and they are also very expensive and kind of dangerous. They will take a lot of strength for me to accomplish, but at least I have only required myself to try one of those things. I will also have to be proactive about registering for 5K and 10K races with my running progress. With my training so far, I usually run about 1 mile before stopping. I have been really successful in shaving down my 1 mile time to eight minutes and 55 seconds. However, a 5K and 10K are obviously a lot longer. So, I will begin to focus more on how far I am able to run instead of how long. There are also four different trips that still need to happen by my birthday. One of them is to visit my brother in college. Another one is to visit my little sister in college and I am almost positive she will be going to college in Boston in the fall. Another trip is to visit my paternal grandmother’s grave, which is in Arkansas. Finally, my last trip is to go to either Alaska, Canada, or Northern California. My job situation is uncertain, so I do not know how all of those trips are going to happen if I have very limited days off. Finally, perhaps the most difficult of all, is that I want to find a job where my skills are utilized, I make more money than I do now, and my physical safety is not at risk like it is at my current job. Really, I want to be in the education field. So, I will have to work a lot on figuring out how to make that happen.

Wow, so this has been my fairly long entry with me talking, so sorry if it sounds quite informal. There are a ton of items on my bucket list for age 24 that I did not mention in this entry, but I have been working hard on almost all of the items. Take care, everyone!

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24 Bucket List

Reality hit me today that I turn 24 in six days! Even though the journey to turning 24 has been important, I am all the more dedicated to making 24 an absolutely incredible year. While sleep-deprived at 6:15 AM during my last overnight shift, I drafted a bucket list to be completed before I turn 25.

I’m not going to include the whole thing on here right now because it hasn’t been finalized yet, but I thought I would offer a taste of what is on it:

  • Either complete a triathlon or at least be registered for one in 2015.
  • Go to at least one live concert of a band/artist you love. Preferably more!
  • Finish watching every single AFI movie on both 1998 and 2007 lists.
  • Run a 10K or a half marathon if I get really into running.
  • Make a time capsule and bury it somewhere that won’t be disturbed for many years.
  • Visit Yosemite National Park, Alaska, or Alberta, Canada. Backpack.
  • Make London study abroad scrapbook.
  • Visit both siblings at college.
  • Visit bff at grad school.
  • Learn how to comfortably parallel park.

I want 24 to be awesome because a) It’s the last year that I’m closer to 20 than 30, b) It’s my favorite number!, c) I love having an excuse to push myself in the sake of self-improvement. When I’m 25, I will have my specific goals. The same goes for when I’m 26 or 46 or 56. For now, I’m focusing on the now: enjoying the last few days of being 23 and looking forward to everything a new year and a new age will bring. 🙂

Cauliflower Pizza Crust

Yesterday, after texting my boyfriend that I was going to make cauliflower pizza, he was skeptical. “I tried cauliflower on a pizza once,” he said. “It wasn’t very good.” It wasn’t until I sent a picture to him later of the finished product that I realized I hadn’t been clear about my newest experimental baking endeavor. I did not put cauliflower on top of my pizza; rather, the cauliflower kind of was my pizza. In other words, I used the cauliflower as the base for my crust as a low carb gluten-free alternative to pizza. Pretty cool, huh? Thanks to Pinterest, trying this recipe out has been on my to-do list for at least a year. I finally got the opportunity to take a swing at it when there was a huge head of cauliflower in the fridge on the verge of going bad.

The recipe is sinfully simple, although it may be a bit time intensive. I highly recommend you give this a shot, though; you won’t be disappointed!

Ingredients:

1.25 cup grated mozzarella cheese
2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese
2.5 cups grated cauliflower
1 large egg
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 red onion, chopped
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 cup tomato sauce
Nonstick cooking spray
Salt and pepper (to taste)
Basil leaves (to taste)

Instructions:

1. Grate your cauliflower. I used a regular old box grater (the same I use to grate mozzarella cheese) and it worked like a charm.
2. Chop your onion and grate your mozz cheese. I shouldn’t have to tell you this in a step, but what the heck.
3. Place the cauliflower crumbles into a bowl and microwave for 6-7 minutes or until warm and pliable.
4. Add a whipped up large egg and 1 cup of mozzarella cheese to the bowl. Add salt and pepper to taste.
5. Spray the oven tray, then place the mixture onto it. Form the crust (it should be about 10″). Be sure not to make it too thick because then it’s more likely for the middle to be softer when its done. The crispier the better!
6. Place in oven at 425 degrees for 10-15 minutes. Wait until the crust is browned on top.
7. Remove the crust, spread the sauce, add the garlic and red pepper flakes, then sprinkle cheese and onions on top.
8. Put it back into the oven for ten more minutes.
9. If you feel so inclined, sprinkle basil leaves on top.

IMG_0255
It’s not actually burnt! The crusts should look like that–nice and crispy. 

5 Tricks I Used To Transform Myself From Being Super-Shy To Being Super Not-Afraid-To-Go-For-It Confident

This is my very first reblog, which I am sharing with you because I think that many of us can benefit from advice in being more confident (myself included). The author really hits the nail on the head in this incredibly sound advice in learning confidence by getting out of your comfort zone.

Thought Catalog

When I was in high school sometimes I used to think of funny things to say in class. This was a thrill for me because I really liked to think of funny things.

But then the whole thought process started. The one inside my head that told me not to say anything because if I DID IT WRONG IT WOULD BE TOO AWFUL TO BEAR.

What if everyone thought I was dumb? What if no one laughed? What if the popular girls thought I was stupid for speaking up? What if I lost the friends that I did have? What if the teacher was mad? What if I couldn’t speak because the heart I felt throbbing in my chest was so loud that no one could even hear the words that I wanted to come out?

Then I tried to do the teenage equivalent of YOLO. I made myself raise…

View original post 2,273 more words

100 Followers!

100followers2I just want to take the time to thank each and every one of you who have followed my blog over the past month. Getting that little WordPress notification that I now have reached the benchmark of 100 followers is truly amazing! I really value each and every one of you and each of you really motivate me to be the best that I can be. So, from the bottom of my heart, thank you! I can’t wait to get to know more of you better through my quest to the ideal me and beyond. 😀 I really enjoy reading all of your blogs in my Reader and I look forward to getting to know even more wonderful people who blog here on WordPress. I’m actually a transplant from Xanga; I moved on over here when it was announced that Xanga was basically going under. One of the things I was most worried about in my transition over to WordPress was finding a supportive community of bloggers. Slowly but surely, I really feel like I have started to find that wonderful community over here on WordPress.

Thank you, thank you, thank you! I hope you all have a wonderful rest of the week. Happy blogging. 😀

Braised coconut spinach with chickpeas

IMG_9770Does this look good to you? If so, I’m going to tell you exactly how to make it! I found this amazing recipe here on treehugger.com. I adapted the recipe below to my own tastes, which I recommend you do, as well!

Ingredients:

2 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil
1 small yellow onion (or half a large yellow onion)
2-3 teaspoons minced garlic
0.5 cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
1 15-oz can of chickpeas/garbanzo beans, drained
1 container spinach (to taste)
14 oz coconut milk
1 teaspoon salt (to taste)
1 teaspoon ground ginger

1. Heat the oil in a pot on medium-high heat.
2. Add the onion and cook for five minutes, or until slightly browned.
3. Add garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, and red pepper. Cook for three minutes and stir frequently.
4. Add chickpeas and cook on high heat until chickpeas start to golden and are covered in the mixture.
5. Add spinach one handful at a time while stirring constantly. Wait for it to wilt until adding more incrementally.
6. Pour in coconut milk and add in salt, ground ginger, and lemon juice.
7. Bring to a simmer and cook for ten minutes more, being sure the chickpeas are sufficiently warmed.
8. Feel free to taste the coconut milk mixture and add more of any ingredient (namely, salt and lemon) to your preference.

Enjoy! I bet there will be leftovers, too. 🙂

Pride

Pride

This is the most recent picture taken of me before going to the Gay Pride parade as a straight ally. I figured it would be fitting to share this picture because sometimes I need to remind myself to be proud of who I am! Even though there are things about me that I would like to change, I want it on the record that I still love who I am.