Tested: Spaghetti Squash Casserole

This recipe was either going to be a huge hit or a complete disaster. Hubby doesn’t like veggies (except corn, green beans and carrots), so getting him to eat squash was going to be a challenge. I debated not telling him what was in it, but he saw the squash on the counter. Busted. Plus, I have never made spaghetti squash before, so I was convinced I was going to totally screw it up. Recipe courtesy of Hungry Girl.

Verdict came in… and it was fantastic. Hubby ate almost the whole thing, even though I wanted to save it for leftovers for our next dinner. It did need some garlic salt to give it a little kick, but I can now say that we are spaghetti squash converts. I’m already looking up more recipes to use it in!

Photo from Hungry Girl

My version

The picture doesn’t do it justice – I already ate half of it before I rememberd to take the picture. I served it with some fish – yes, it’s breaded, but it’s baked so it’s okay. Each fillet is only about 230 calories!

Advertisements

Tested: Crockpot Breakfast Casserole

Since hubby and I are trying to eat better/less, I decided that we needed to have a big, healthy breakfast each morning on the weekend so that we didn’t stuff our faces when lunch came around. Enter the breakfast casserole. AND you make it in the crockpot the night before so it’s ready when you finally roll out of bed the next morning.

I found this recipe on Southern Lovely. It claimed to be “delicious” and “so great and easy!” – I beg to differ. Well, on the delicious part.

It was super easy – you dump everything in the crockpot and pour an egg mixture over it. Turn it on and let it cook. Okay, except that I used turkey sausage instead of ham (which may be the problem, I don’t know) and it didn’t really seem like there were enough eggs to get everything moistened, as the directions say to do. Also, I like my hashbrowns crispy. These were definitely NOT crispy.

Hubby liked it though and ate several large helpings. There is definitely enough to feed a family – we had leftovers for Sunday morning and there’s still some in there today (and probably tomorrow).

Photo from Southern Lovely

Remember to add some salt and pepper. It needs it.

My version

Tested: some random organization tip

I went wild with Pinterest this weekend. I tested all kinds of things… and surprisingly they all worked. Somewhat.

The first thing I did was go on an organizing binge. Our junk drawer and the cabinet above it were a complete mess. So I bought some fancy dancy little trays at Target and set to cleaning them. The cabinet tray was inspired by a pin on Pinterest, although I can’t find it now so I can’t say where it came from or show you what it looked like. But it was a little wicker basket type tray with pretty little labels for each slot to show what needs to go in there. Yeah, mine didn’t look anything like that and I definitely didn’t have labels. But it does the job.

The “after” of the junk cabinet. Let’s see how long it stays this way!!

The junk drawer, which I don’t have a picture of, now consists of a two-tier plastic tray with all sorts of random compartments for all the random crap we throw in there. Looks pretty good now though, if I do say so myself.

Sell baby, sell!

I moved around a lot since we came to Arizona. A LOT. So when I finally bought my condo at around age 22, 23 (I don’t really remember), I was beyond thrilled. I finally had my own place and I knew I wasn’t going anywhere anytime soon.

Enter my hubby. Not my hubby at the time I met him, obviously, but soon to be.

Hubby caused me to have to pack up all my belongings and haul my butt across town to live with him. He had the bigger place, and he had a dog – that required a yard, which I did not have. So I picked up and moved in.

My condo and I hadn’t really been getting along anyway – a little while after we started dating, I came home one day to find my pretty wood laminate flooring all “squishy” under my feet over by the kitchen. Called up my dad in a panic – I had a leak and I needed help. Turns out that the refrigerator I just replaced a couple of weeks before (due to the whole thing taking a massive dump on me and leaking water all over the floor) was connected to the pipe in the wall, and the people that delivered it turned the pipe – causing it to leak into the wall. I had to get the whole wall ripped out, all my kitchen cabinets and my entire floor from the dining room to the front door. It took me months to get the company to ante up and fix everything.

Shortly after that, both my toilets in the bathrooms started leaking. I had my brother come and replace both of those. I also had to replace the water heater, which again, my brother so kindly did for me. A few months before the leak debacle in the kitchen, I came home from a nice weekend trip with the boyfriend (now my hubby) and the place smelled like it was on fire. Turns out that my A/C motor had burned up. The nice gentleman who came out to fix it said I would most likely need a new A/C unit within the year.

Needless to say, I basically replaced the entire condo, short of tearing it down and rebuilding. Which is to be expected considering it was built in the 80s and I’m pretty sure everything was the original stuff that was put in. But I was still ready to be out of there. We decided to rent it out.

After finding a property management company, listing it and waiting, and waiting… and waiting, we finally had a tenant move in. Not knowing that this would be the tenant from hell – I was excited! Then the management company called. The A/C unit went out and needed to be replaced. I knew it was coming, I was just hoping it would be later. So we had to shell out $5K to get that fixed. THEN the tenant decided she was going to cause all sorts of havoc and we had to get her (and her illegal dog) evicted. Then we got new tenants.

At this point, hubby and I decided we just need to unload the place. The new tenants are well behaved, but they call the management company about every little damn thing. $60 to replace a light bulb, anyone? Plus, we aren’t even covering the mortgage each month with the fee that the management company takes.

One of my BFFs is a realtor, so I told her just get rid of it. Whatever we have to do. Turns out that it’s not even worth half of what I owe on it, so it will need to be a short sale. Not only will my credit be screwed up for a few years, but I have to go through mountains of paperwork just to see if we can sell it. What a freaking PITA.

Luckily the tenants that are in there really like the place and don’t want to move. So their children are actually liquidating their 401k in order to buy it from me. Hallelujah. One less thing to worry about. So now I go back to collecting all my short sale paperwork: bank statements, pay stubs, back taxes, financial forms, hardship letters… the list just goes on and on. Maybe I should send them one of my eggs and some DNA as well just to make sure they have everything they need.

Please just let this short sale be accepted so I can get this thing over with!!

Slacker

I know I said I was going to post more. I also said I was going to post Pinterest tests more. I also said that I was dieting. Well, I’m apparently a full-blown liar.

I’ve actually been pretty busy at work trying to catch up all sorts of past “issues” and so I haven’t had any time to get on and post. And when I get home, the last thing I want to do is sit down in front of a computer!

As for the Pinterest tests, the majority of ones that I was testing were all recipes. And they were not good for you recipes. So, since hubby and I have been embarking on our diet extravaganza again (starting this past Monday), I unfortunately do not have a lot of testing going on. However, I am going to be making a side dish with spaghetti squash that I found on Pinterest, so I can put that one up. It’s supposed to be healthy so it fits my promise to post and it fits the diet!

What’s been going on with me lately? Well, I’ve been sort of up and down the last couple of weeks. Ever since we got back from Chicago, I’ve been eating everything in sight, so I’ve been feeling very down about my body and none of my clothes fit. They didn’t fit before, but for some reason it’s just really been hitting home these last couple weeks. Then hubby’s family was in town, so we were out eating every other night and drinking and doing everything to make me feel like a fat slob. On top of that, we have been cleared to TTC again. We were supposed to wait one cycle after I miscarried before we started trying. Cycle came and went, so we jumped back in. The whole thought of conceiving again makes me scared out of my mind – I really want a baby (I had no idea how much, until we lost the one we had) but what if I have another miscarriage? What if there is something totally wrong with me and I can’t carry a baby at all? DH inisists that if it doesn’t happen, no worries – we will just become that childless couple who spends our money on traveling instead of a child. But I know he would be so incredibly bummed. So would I. The only thing we can do is give it a shot and hope that something positive comes of it!

To add to my fears about getting pregnant again, I started having really weird pains in my right ribcage the other night. They were seriously hurting me – it felt like someone was stabbing me every time I moved or breathed. The the pain started moving to my right arm and up to my shoulder. The pain in my ribcage finally subsided (I still feel a twinge now and then) but the pain in my shoulder is still there and is super intense. Not only does it feel like I’m being stabbed, but it’s a burning feeling at the same time. Oh, and after lunch yesterday, I got massive cramps and shooting pains across my upper abdomen. Seriously, what is my body trying to tell me???

Well, I asked hubby’s mom about my ribcage/arm/shoulder pain (she’s a nurse) and she said that it sounded like something called Chostochondritis – inflammation of the rib cage. So I Googled it (bad idea) and upon reading that, discovered that I most likely have Tietze’s Syndrome: a rare, inflammatory disorder characterized by chest pain and swelling of the cartilage of one or more of the upper ribs (costochondral junction). Onset of pain may be gradual or sudden and may spread to affect the arms and/or shoulders. It says that it is considered a benign syndrome and normally cures itself without treatment. No known cause. Super!!

While reading all my possible symptoms and how to treat it and what causes it (because I can’t just let sleeping dogs lie), I discovered a link regarding Lupus symptoms. 

A little backstory here… about 5 years ago, I was losing a lot of hair. I went to the dermatologist and after taking a chunk of my scalp, they came back with a diagnosis: scarring Alopecia. Meaning, I could potentially lose all my hair and unlike regular Alopecia, mine wouldn’t grow back because the follicle would scab over after the hair fell out.  On top of that, Alopecia is a symptom of Lupus, so they wanted me to go see a rheumatologist to get tested for that. After panicking (not only that I would lose my hair, but that I undoubtedly had some immune disease) I made the appointment for the rheumatologist. Test came back with a high level of ANA in my blood, but other than that I appeared to be fine. I was supposed to go every 6 months for blood work to monitor what was going on. I slacked off and haven’t been there in about a year and half.

Back to the link on the Google site: I discovered that if you have Lupus you actually have a greater chance of miscarrying. And if you have Lupus, you should be monitored throughout your whole pregnancy to lessen the chance of miscarrying. Of course, I flipped out when I read that. What if I have Lupus but don’t know it because I stopped going to the doctor? What if that’s what caused my miscarriage? I immediately called and made an appointment to get blood work done and talk to the doctor about everything that’s happened. DH and I are trying again and I don’t want this to be a possible factor of not carrying a baby to term.

Sorry this post was so long! Congrats if you’re still reading 🙂 – I just had a lot going on lately and wanted to catch up on what had been happening.

I’m also toying with the idea of posting my blog out there for the world to see – trying to decide if I’m ready for everyone to know what I’ve been going through.

Tested: Chicken Roll Ups

And here we go with the Pinterest testing blog posts…

Last night for dinner I made chicken roll ups. I got the recipe/idea from Jenna’s Journey. I’m gonna say they were a success, even though I did a few things different – hubby devoured them. And then he devoured them AGAIN for breakfast!

Jenna’s blog says to boil the chicken and then mix it with the other ingredients. Roll it all into the crescent roll and then brush the top with butter and sprinkle on breadcrumbs. The butter on top was a little much for me, seeing as how I was mixing in an entire block of cream cheese and then shredded cheddar on top of that! So I didn’t do the butter. I did however, add one packet of Ranch dressing mix. And I used shredded colby jack instead. Oh, and I had hubby grill the chicken to give it some extra flavor. Gotta say, they turned out freaking delicious. And they looked pretty much like Jenna’s! I used two cans of crescents instead of her one.

Pictures from Jenna’s Journey

My creation!

 

Build me up buttercup

So, to cheer myself up, I headed over to my fellow blogger’s site: The Pintester. The stuff that girl puts on her blog is always so funny – mostly because I have the same thoughts when I see pins… “I can do that, it looks so easy!” But then I try them and they come out looking absolutely nothing like the original pin.

Damn you Pinterest!!!

However, check out my page Pinteresties: Actually DONE! to see what I’ve been up to. I repinned anything that I’ve tried onto this board with a description underneath of how it turned out. Not quite Pintester material, but it’s a start. I’ll take a cue from her and start blogging my experiments. I don’t want to take away from her though – because she is a genius – so mine will not be anywhere near as funny.  And mine are mostly food, because I have a slight obsession with eating.