After I bought the recipe book, Sweet and Sugar-Free by Karen Barkey, I was suddenly inspired to start being more creative in my kitchen! So, this morning, I baked up a loaf of old-fashioned banana bread using the recipe from Karen's book. There is no sugar in this recipe, the sweetening comes from the ripe bananas, and then a liberal addition of cinnamon and nutmeg and lots of chopped walnuts. Now we're getting ready for the holiday weekend, and in addition to celebrating our American heroes, here at our house we are also celebrating three birthdays! We have three grandbabies with birthdays on Memorial Day weekend . . . . one is six years old, one is five years old, and one is four years old ;o) The five year old lives in Colorado, but the other two are here with us this weekend, so we will celebrate all three birthdays even though one is probably going to be via Skype! While searching for healthy alternative recipes for all kinds of things, I found this super simple pasta salad recipe that I'm going to make for our birthday lunch tomorrow:
This pasta salad is easy to make and so delicious!
Tips: Variations of this salad are endless. Try it with any number of vegetables, or even add tuna or chicken or chopped hard boiled eggs. You can even make it lower in fat with a nonfat dressing.
Calories: 147 Fat: 5g Carbs: 21g Protein: 4g Cholesterol: 1mg Fiber: 2g Sodium: 367mg
Based on a recipe from Quick Meals for Healthy Kids and Busy Parents. Copyright © 1995 by Sandra K. Nissenberg, Margaret L. Bogle, and Audrey C. Wright. All rights reserved. Used by arrangement with John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
To order this book visit www.wiley.com.
I hate to admit it, but it is true . . . . the work I am doing has created a situation where I am completely dependent on my computer. So, when my regular computer crashed and burned two weeks ago, I was lost. There's a wonderful computer fix-it guy not too far from my house, so that's a good thing. I called Jack and explained what had happened, and he said, "Well . . . . bring it in and we'll see what we can do." That didn't sound good, so I asked if whatever had happened had completely destroyed my hard drive. That would mean, I guess, that I had lost all of my pictures and all of the documents that I've been working on for the past several years. All of my eBook patterns, all of my articles, and all of the documents that I need to create each issue of Ruby for Women. He was rather vague in his response, but it sounded like that was not the main problem. Is this good or is this bad?
So, I loaded up the computer and drove over to the shop. Jack was very friendly and cheerful, I think partly because he was afraid that he was going to have to give me some bad news. I came back home and waited. I felt like I was waiting for a baby to be born or something. Of course, there was a lot of work to do here around the house, but I really, really needed to get some of my computer work done. Jack called the next day and said, "I have some good news and some bad news. The good news is that your hard drive is intact, but the computer is completely worn out." I guess I've been working it too hard. So we discussed the options . . . . until my husband reminded me that his computer (which he was not using regularly since we got the lap top) was in perfectly good shape, and could Jack just put the hard drive into THAT computer? Good idea!
I called Jack back and asked him if that would work and he said to just bring it over and he'd take a look at it. OK . . . . another day of work sucked into the big black hole of "running around doing errands." Because, of course, since I was going out anyway, I would just make a few quick stops. The post office, buy a few groceries, go to the bank, stop at the eye dr. to drop off the broken glasses. That kind of thing. After looking at the working computer, Jack informed me that the hard drives were not compatible. BUT . . . . he could take all of the data off of my hard drive, copy it to a disk, and put it all on the hard drive of the working computer. Whatever it takes. I need to get back to work. That would only take a couple of days and I should be good to go.
By then it was the weekend, so I knew nothing was going to happen in a big hurry. Over the weekend, we decided that I should use the lap top and try to work on that while I waited for mine to be fixed. Good idea, except that ALL of the information that I needed to work with was on the other computer. But I could at least take care of the piles of emails that were accumulating, and I could get started on a few new projects, and I could even recreate some of the stuff that I needed. Well, if you are used to working on a regular computer (with a mouse) and then you try to switch to a lap top (without a mouse . . . . just that little pad that you have to mess around with) you know how annoying it is. Suffice it to say, I did manage to get some work done, but seemed to experience an ongoing sense of desperation, kind of like a low-grade fever over a very long period of time.
By Monday, I was really ready to get this show on the road, so I called Jack's shop. I thought it rather strange that he had not called me, because he had been pretty snappy the previous week. There was no answer, so I left a message, thinking that he would call me back later in the day. When I didn't hear from him for a couple of days, I really began to be concerned. Finally, on Thursday night I got a call around 9:00 p.m. from Jack's daughter. He was in the hospital, in ICU, recovering from some kind of aortic aneurysm that he suffered the previous Saturday. Oh my goodness!
Now the condition of my computer seemed to become instantaneously insignificant compared to Jack's health. His daughter told me he should be out of the hospital by Saturday, and that he would call me on Monday. That made me feel a bit better about his prognosis, but I certainly did not want him worrying about my computer when he needed to be investing all of his energy in getting healthy. Sure enough, Monday morning at about 9:03 a.m. Jack called. He sounded OK but tired. He said that he would be in the shop on Monday and Tuesday, but had to go back into the hospital on Wednesday (today) to have something else done to fix the problem. He will probably be out of the shop at least until the end of next week, and then restricted activity for at least six weeks.
But Jack is a trooper, a kind and gentle man, and totally trusts that God is in control, no matter what happens. So, today I am praying for Jack and his family. And I will call him the first part of next week to see how he is doing. I did drive over to his shop on Monday, picked up the resurrected computer, and now I can finally get back to work. All of my stuff has been located and rescued, and I'm burning up the keypad trying to catch up on so many projects. But my little encounter with Jack and my broken down computer over the past couple of weeks has definitely brought me back to the reality of life. Really . . . . sometimes there are things that are more important than a computer, email, Facebook and Twitter. Yes, building my business is important to my family, but there are bigger issues in the world. I can't let my computer control my life, even though I am grateful for the gift of being able to work at home that my computer offers.
Actually this post was going to be about my Journal of Gratitude. That's why the pictures are here, because I want to document my progress which has been minimal while I've been messing around with the computer situation. But I am also reminded to be grateful. Today I am grateful for many things, but especially I am grateful for my friend Jack and his steps toward recovery. And I am grateful that, so far, my family is healthy. That's truly a gift! Are you working on your Gratitude Journal? Making progress? I'd love to see your pictures!