What’s on My Reading List; The Book of Forgiving

What’s on My Reading List; The Book of Forgiving

The Book of Forgiving: The Fourfold Path for Healing Ourselves and Our WorldThe Book of Forgiving: The Fourfold Path for Healing Ourselves and Our World by Desmond Tutu
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Truly beautiful book. The instruction for forgiveness is really illustrated well with fabulously shared stories.

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This quote was a really eye opening to me and changed how I look at things.  Before understanding this I always felt that forgiveness meant letting someone off of the hook.  I like this thought much better . . .

“Forgiveness does not relieve someone of responsibility for what they have done. Forgiveness does not erase accountability. It is not about turning a blind eye or even turning the other cheek. It is not about letting someone off the hook or saying it is okay to do something monstrous. Forgiveness is simply about understanding that every one of us is both inherently good and inherently flawed. Within every hopeless situation and every seemingly hopeless person lies the possibility of transformation.” 

Back to School Cooking; Mac -n Cheese

Back to School Cooking; Mac -n Cheese

9 days!

In 9 glorious days the kids go back to school.  It’s time for some back to school cooking!

Today, I did my back to school Costco run.  The first of a few.
Let the freezer cooking begin . . . .

With school and work and soccer and marching band and … and…. and…. it’s way easier to have awesome homemade dinners ready to go in our freezer.  Today I made mac -n- cheese.  This recipe is also perfect for sports banquets, graduation parties, and tailgating.

Macaroni -n Cheese for The Team

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mac n cheese Mac n Cheese This large recipe makes enough mac n cheese for several freezer trays. Awesome for busy families. Course: Main Course, Side Dish Cuisine: American Keyword: cheese, pasta Servings: 24 – 3 1 lb boxes macaroni noodles – 56 ounces shredded cheddar cheese 1 1/2 Costco bags – 14 cups milk – 1 large onion diced – 1 cup flour – 8 tbs butter – 1 tbs salt – 2 tsp black pepper – 2 tsp ground mustard – 1 tsp white pepper – 1 tsp paprika 1) Boil water in large pan and cook noodles for 7 minutes 2) In very large saucepan on medium heat melt the butter. Add onion and cook for 2-3 minutes. Add seasoning and flour. Stir until it is stiff. 3) Add milk. 4) Stir until it almost boils 5) Add cheese slowly and stir until it is melted 6) Put noodles in giant pan or multiple cooking dishes 7) Top with cheese mixture 8) Stir until noodles are coated 9) Bake uncovered at 375 for 45 minutes  


Costco in the Kitchen; Chicken Tenderloin Stir Fry

Do items at Costco interest you, but you just don’t know what to do with them?  Do you buy them and end up throwing them away or just walk past them and wonder?

From our recent trip to Vegas;
Chinese New Year at Bellagio
I spotted these Asian noodles in the deli section and threw them in the cart.  The first few times I just tossed a little soy sauce on them and threw them in the microwave.  This is still the 10 year old’s favorite way to eat them.
Here’s a super easy recipe just in time
for a family Chinese New Year celebration. (you can get Chinese take out cartons at Michael’s to make it even more like a party).

Chicken Tenderloin Stir-fry


  • 5 frozen chicken tenderloins thawed and sliced into small pieces
  • 3 cups frozen stir fry vegetable mix thawed (do not try to use these frozen because the broccoli will never cook)
  • 3 individual packs Japanese Udon noodles
  • 1 Tbs sesame oil
  • salt
  • pepper
  • cilantro for garnish


  • 1 Tbs white wine vinegar
  • 1 heaping Tbs curry powder
  • 1/3 cup fish sauce (from the Asian aisle in the grocery store)
  • 1 Tbs ketchup
  • 1 Tbs soy sauce
  • 1 Tbs Sriricha chili sauce


  • Mix the ingredients for the sauce in a medium sized bowl and set aside
  • Heat the sesame oil in a wok or skillet
  • Cook the chicken stirring frequently – about 4 minutes
  • Add the vegetables and cook until warm – about 4 minutes
  • Remove the chicken and veggies from the pan
  • Add just enough oil to lightly re-coat the pan
  • Add the Japanese noodles
  • Toss them in the pan until lightly brown – about 1 minute
  • Toss the sauce into the noodles in the pan until the noodles are coated and heat until the sauce is warm – about 1 minute
  • Add the chicken and veggies to the noodles and stir until coated
  • Serve

To change this recipe up

-use shrimp or beef instead of chicken
-save time by using a prepared stir-fry sauce instead of making your own
-toss sauce on chicken and veggies and serve on top of brown rice instead of the noodles

Items in this recipe from Costco:

frozen chicken tenderloins
frozen stir-fry veggies
Japanese noodles (refrigerated)

What Kale? Protein Smoothie

Summer time = Breakfast?  No worries, the kids are not even awake until lunch time.
Back to school time = Breakfast?  Our daughter has the weird “B” lunch in the middle of her fourth hour class and our son has the late lunch, 4 1/2 hours after the bus picks him up in the morning. Whatever it is it must contain some protein or they just won’t make it to lunch.

This smoothie tastes so good and with it’s beautiful purple hue they won’t even know the kale is in there.  It’s the perfect way to get them off to school

What Kale? Protein Smoothie
Printable Version


  • 1 banana
  • 1 c fresh strawberries
  • 1 1/2 c frozen blueberries
  • 1 c vanilla Greek yogurt
  • 1/4 c skim milk
  • 1 thin slice lime
  • 2 c fresh baby kale
  • 1 c ice


  • place all ingredients into a blender and mix until smooth
  • add more milk if necessary

The C Word, Facing Difficult Decisions With Cancer

No one wants to get that call from their physician asking them to come into the office to receive the bad

news.  I am sure, from the other end, they dread making those calls. 

I am not an expert.  I have no medical training or education, but I have had front row experience from the bleacher seats. I hope that you and no one you know receives the dreaded call, but if they do I hope that these 5 tips help.

1)  Find a doctor you trust and like.

Everyone you talk to will know someone.  They will recommend doctors, hospitals, advice.   “This one is the best”, “I heard this one is the worst”.  Unless they have had the same condition as you, stick with referrals from your physician.  Keep looking until you find someone you like and trust.  My husband really liked his doctor and I know that it has made a difference.

2)  Remember that medicine is big business

Advertisements that have been running for weeks, months, years without you noticing will now stick out.  It will seem like every time you get into the car or turn on the TV you hear an ad for cancer treatment.  By all means, be curious and check things out if they sound good to you, but remember they are trying to sell you.  Medicine is big business.

3)  Don’t self diagnose using the internet

The internet is an incredible tool and there is a lot of information out there.  Unless you are searching credible medical sites, such as  Mayo Clinic and Cancer.org, don’t use it for research.  You may be reading false information or information that is sponsored by a drug or insurance company that is trying to sell you something.

4)  Hope for the best, but plan for the worst.

When researching your options always consider the worst case scenario when it comes to side effects and recovery.  No one wants to fall into this category, but you must consider “is this the right option for me” when there is a chance that ‘x’ is a possibility.  It’s too easy to hear what the best case recovery statistics are and stop listening.  No one thinks that they will take the maximum time to rehabilitate, or that the risks apply to them, but you must consider them when choosing which treatment is best for you. 

5)  Let go

Once you’ve had the treatment forget that there were other options.  Focus on your rehabilitation and getting well.  No regrets.  No looking back.  Rehab is frustrating.  Don’t make it worse for yourself.  I believe that attitude is everything including your health.  Keep positive.  Watch positive videos on YouTube, read positive books, call an optimistic friend.  There are lots of resources, if it isn’t coming from within, to help keep a smile on your face.

“Healing is a matter of time, but it is sometimes also a matter of opportunity,”

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