Thursday, October 16, 2014

Spicy Chipotle Chicken Chili

This was our dinner tonight! Delicious!

Spicy Chipotle Chicken Chili

2 tablespoons canola oil
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, trimmed & cut into small pieces
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon seasoned salt
1 green pepper, finely diced
1 24 ounce jar medium salsa
1 15.5 ounce can black beans, drained & rinsed
2 6.5 ounce cans mushrooms stems & pieces with liquid
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground chipotle

Heat the canola oil in a pot or pan large enough to hold the chili. Add the chicken, onion, garlic powder & seasoned salt, and cook over medium heat stirring frequently until the chicken is done.

Add the rest of the ingredients, and stir well. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to low, and cook for 20 to 30 minutes stirring occasionally. Serve topped with shredded mild cheddar cheese. Makes 6 servings.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Thoughts on Blogging

I haven't been seriously blogging for so many years, but I think about it a lot. I have a lot to say.

I write for work now. I write a lot. Most of the writing and supporting research is not fun for me in spite of the fact that I like to write and research a lot.

Sometimes I think about blogging more transparently about my life like I did in the past. Probably fear stops me. Sometimes fear is a good thing. On the other hand, I might just be busy and lazy.

Sometimes I think about blogging about my passions with hopes of changing the world or just positively influencing a few individual souls. That would be serious, time-consuming writing. It would involve entries coming to logical conclusions. That is not one of my strong points, but it might be a nice challenge. (On the other hand, I sometimes think about having a blog where absolutely none of the entries have any sense of conclusion. That is a type of writing I excel at, and I do think it has a place. It leads people to draw their own conclusions. I like to spark thoughtfulness.)

My favorite type of blog to read is the chatty blog about interesting and yet normal peoples' lives with hints of deepness and dollops of humor that keep pulling me back. The best blogs happen often and share a portion of reality even if they stop at total transparency.

I would also like a custom URL. I think real bloggers have designated websites. At the same time, I know that that is just an excuse to not move forward with what I already have.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

I try to embrace humanity with love. Sometimes it is hard for me. Mostly the difficulties arise from my own anxiety and insecurities. A funny thing is that I have always had a distance and anxiety towards other human beings, but at the same time I have a strong desire to create intimate connections with others. It is one of my life callings. When I succeed in forming those connections, wonderful things happen. They take time and energy, but they are worth the effort.

On the other hand, sometimes it is hard to make the choice to move towards connection. I am a true introvert, and interacting with most people is very draining to me. Lots of times, I think that I would rather read a book or go for a long walk than spend time interacting with others. I have been making progress towards making the connection choice more often this year. The key is making more conscious decisions instead of quick reactions in the moment.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Ramblings on depression, personal power, connections and fear...

My depression cycle is not as strong as it was, but I am still crying a few tears most mornings. I am lonely. When I work as many hours as I am now, I find myself disconnected from Diana very quickly. I am trying hard not to be, but she is tired after work and needs lots of time alone to decompress and do things that are important to her. She tries to draw me in with TV shows, but mostly I just want words and touch. I wish we could go away a bit and just be together.

Also, when I work so many hours, so many days a week, I start to feel that there is nothing to look forward to. I know this isn't exactly true, but not only do I disconnect from people, I disconnect from plans and events. To a certain extent I disconnect from any emotions. That is what keeps me trekking and doing things that to many would seem nearly impossible.

This time, I am trying to do it right. We are at a place where I need to give work a huge chunk of my time, but I am trying (perhaps a bit desperately) to stay connected to people and events and even things that matter to me. It is hard because when I am disconnected from Diana, we have more trouble making plans together and we are a together kind of couple. I am struggling hard to keep pushing on this front too.

At the age of 47, I am feeling a need to stretch my personal power. To ask for the things that I need until I get them. Not to be greedy, to also give to others the way I want to and know that they need me to even when it isn't easy for them to receive. We have more money, and we have reliable transportation. There is space in our lives for some "mores" even if time is tight.

The hardest thing about having more money is prioritizing. I find if I am working hard at the money earning thing, I am not willing to live as if I am super poor. This requires a lot more decision making than when you know every penny is going to pay the rent!

The hardest thing about having less time is prioritizing. When you have a lot of time, you say yes a lot. I still want to say yes because I am eager for people and experiences. I feel like my life is ticking away and saying no gives me less when I want more. At the same time, there are always going to be a few no's. For money and time.

Lots of things I want to write about but that work thing is calling...and have I mentioned the laundry...

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Cycling

At 10:30 or 11:00 or noon, acceptance doesn't feel too hard. I sit still and work on it like a kind of meditation. I breathe in and out and whisper "Let is be." By 3 p.m. I feel joy, and I anticipate things being wonderful and great. By 7 or 8 or certainly 9 p.m. I am scared and anxious. In the morning, after the first 15 to 30 minutes, sadness washes over me, and I want so much.

I have three sides, and one is placid and accepting. Another is anxious, scared and hiding. The last is striving, determined, needy and wishing for power & intensity; fun & spontaneity is a plus.

How does one reconcile the various parts of themselves? I like to think there is a place and a time for all. Right now, my determined, needing, craving intensity part is screaming and making me sad far too often. Especially in the morning, after the 15 minutes of newness and hope wears off.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Random Rambling Vague Life Update

This is not going to be a week with a lot of time for blogging.

I am working a lot. My house is starting to get messy. I am not quite keeping up with the laundry. We need the money right now though so I am going to plow through towards my goals.

I have spring fever big time, and especially on sunny days, I only want to have fun. Unfortunately, I am one of those persons who don't really know how to have fun. I am trying to learn by relaxing just a little bit and trying to figure out how to assert my needs without running over anyone else's. All that might just require a little more social skills and common sense than I was born with, but I can give it a shot!

Esme started a job at McDonalds yesterday. It went well. She needs a bike soon though because otherwise she will spend way too much time waiting for Diana. Toni is Toni. He is jumping into the yard work with a fierce determination. We are going to kill some of the poison ivy this year. I want to be able to hang my laundry outside all summer without fear of contamination. Also, I want the grandkids to be able to play outside more freely when they visit.