Books and Bowls

I stopped by the local library’s quarterly “Friends of the Library” sale last Friday and came home with some goodies.

First up, from the diet/fitness section. Always a good area to check because there are LOTS of new books, and as a dietitian I like to keep current with what new fad books are out there. I’ve gotten a couple good reference books from this section in the past, including the infamous “Intuitive Eating” and “Dr. Shapiro’s Picture Perfect Weight Loss” (which is a really good visual aide to illustrate caloric density with patients).

The latest book?


Haha, I know. I’ve always heard of the book, and so I flipped through to see if it was crap / waste of money. But his premise actually appealed. Spending a couple minutes in the morning to do just 2 strength training moves – that’s easy enough to do! Now, I don’t necessarily believe that that alone will help you lose 2 pounds a week (the testimonials are from people who were also walking 5 miles a day and eating smaller portions) but I think it’s a good start. Strength training is certainly something that is often overlooked, by me as well!

And so, I started Day 1 today at 6am(it’s just a 28 day program). The dogs weren’t too curious of my new moves, and before I knew it I was done and into the shower. I think I might even have to buy heavier dumbbells (I currently have a 3#, 5# and 8# set.. probably should grow up and move into the double digit world.. haha)

Next up… the textbook section.

I don’t normally peruse this section at library/book sales too much because they’re out of date. As a child I definitely bought my fair share of textbooks (I know, major dork). I remember having spare French textbooks in my room. Not sure why. I hated French. Maybe it was just for when I “taught” my imaginary class.

These days I like to see if there’s any nutrition textbooks (although really.. why?! I don’t have enough??). But today this caught my eye:


I know, looks exciting, right? I’ve noticed that when we have nursing students in the building, they’re all carrying around a similar textbook and furiously taking notes about their patients of the day. I’ve often wondered what words of wisdom the textbook contains, and now for $1 I can find out :)

It’s actually a pretty helpful book. 21 chapters outlining basic mental health information, drugs, disorders, and basic patient care information. Definitely helpful for anyone who works in the field, nursing or not. And so, I began Day 1 of the 21 Day program (haha), reading a chapter a day. Seriously :)

Yes, the title of this post was Books and Bowls. So where are the bowls?



Ah, the beginning of my vintage pyrex collection. This is the Autumn Harvest pattern, released in 1982. I purchase the two smaller bowls from a garage sale last weekend, and received the larger, cinnamon bowl in the mailbox this afternoon (thank you mother for bidding on it on eBay!). Don’t they look lovely?

I may have become obsessed, memorizing all the patterns available, scouring craigslist on a multi-daily basis for bargains (and I check for the whole COUNTRY!). I may have just made a deal with a women in East Texas, buying a set of eight pieces, so I can pick them up at the crack of dawn as I drive back from Houston. Yes, I coordinate vintage pyrex finds into my travels :)

But aren’t they fun?



Visitors at the Funny Farm

Look who’s happy, sunning himself out on the porch, legs crossed:


And why is he so happy? Probably because his grandparents arrived last night, along with his estranged brother and sister:


From left – Annie Nanners (black lab), Neuman (beagle), and then in the background is Bess our foster BC.

The house is certainly crazy with 4 dogs running around, and Bess is wearing herself out having to control/herd/protect everyone (well… the protecting is mostly of myself… I have my own personal, furry body guard it seems).

My parents unloaded a million things from the trusty Toyota Avalon (including a bike so I can now enjoy the trails near/around the smoky mountains!). Lots of plans for the upcoming week, including all the outside/fix up stuff that this tenant fails to do :)

Tomato Update: Day 15

Tomatoes are growing really well! Still watering everyday after work, and so far so good.



You can go here or here for the Day 0 and Day 8 updates :)

Forgotten but exciting news!

Remember when I mentioned my search for a card catalog?? Well, success is mine! I guess the craze that exists for buying vintage library card catalogs is minimized out here in East Tennessee – this guy had been listed for almost a month, the price dropped $250, and I was easily able to snatch it up :)

Going to pick it up today with the Avalon + Matrix. Luckily it comes apart for moving. Here is a picture sent from the owner – I’ll update when we get it set up here!!


A girl’s night in!

Wednesday afternoon. I took the day off from exercise and decided to spoil myself on this rainy day – a little shopping on the way home, lots of time reading this afternoon (with tennis on in the background, of course), pumpkin pancakes for dinner, and my first netflix movie tonight!!

After work I stopped by the post office to mail my new Christmas watch back to the service center in Brooklyn, NY. The Boy gave me a beautiful Swiss-made mechanical watch for Christmas, the kind that automatically ‘charges’ with motion, so there’s no battery. But unfortunately it was faulty, and doesn’t keep time very well, so I’ve mailed it off to be fixed/replaced. Fingers crossed it doesn’t take the 6 weeks that the warranty card warned about!

And then I decided to stop by Ross for a little shopping. Yesterday, I discovered the $50 AT&T rebate VISA card in my wallet…. free money! I didn’t do any crazy shopping or anything… just picked up a new workout shirt and some new running socks (mine are all getting too thin or tight). Checking out, I told the cashier I didn’t need a bag – I’d just carry the items out. Most people think I’m crazy, but finally someone understood my desire to help out the environment. Her eyes lit up and she said “Thank you! I’m a tree-hugger myself, and people always give me a hard time, but I appreciate your effort!”. So there are a few others like me out there :)

Rain rain rain. Sheff isn’t going to get much outside time today (sorry buddy!). I’m about to plonk down on the couch with all my books (my current novel, travel books and cook books) and get some reading done.

And then… breakfast for dinner! Yay! I forgot I had that Trader Joe’s Pumpkin Pancake Mix sitting in the pantry. Sounds marvelous. Maybe a soy-sage patty on the side to bump up my protein intake.

But I can’t get too full, because I’m going to pop some popcorn for my first official Netflix movie night. I rented “The Women” and we’ll see how good it is!


Post Thanksgiving Message

Happy Black Sunday!


That’s our lovely table set for Thanksgiving meal. Good food had by all 10 of us at the farm!

  • Turkey – I will say that we wanted and attempted to purchase a locally raised turkey… but the $90 turkey breast we came across was a little out of our league :(
  • Cranberry Sauce
  • My “Gourmet Potatoes” – (aka mashed potatoes with sour cream, butter and cheese… always a hit!)
  • Sweet Potato Casserole
  • Mass quantities of Sister Schubert’s yeast rolls
  • Green Beans
  • Stuffing – I tried a fun new recipe from food network with apple, cranberries and sausage…. excuse me… soysage :)
  • Jell-o salad
  • For dessert: my wonder pumpkin cheesecake and my sister’s spice cake

Yum yum yum!

Black Friday shopping?? Not as successful. I didn’t get up at 5am as planned…. ended up leaving the house with my dad at 7am, only to be called back home to help my uncle who’s car was stuck in the mud! They were on their way back to Florida, and pulled off the driveway to check for something… little did they know about our quicksand-like driveway! I called AAA, but my dad and uncle (2 engineer brothers) were able to pull it out with a rope and toyota engine. haha.

So… got to Target (who had by far the best deals) at 8:30am, only to see that everything was gone. Darn.

Lesson learned? Now that it’s a 2 day sale – go back the second day, the shelves are re-stocked and the crowds are gone!

I picked up some cheap DVDs, and got a new camera!! Christmas present :)

A great bargain at $88! I’ve been wanting a nice small camera that’s easier to tote around than my current one. I don’t think this new camera will take better pictures, but now I’ll have both to choose from :)

Yesterday was a fun day – lunch in Market Square, and a Lady Vols game against UCLA. We just squeaked by. How I miss the amazing Lady Vols team from a few years ago!

The rest of the afternoon was spent watching football games:

  • FSU vs Florida – my cousin here goes to FSU, and the rest of us hate Florida
  • Tennessee vs Kentucky – obviously cheering for the vols
  • Georgia vs GA Tech – so excited that we won. I think Russ (the interim bulldog) must be good luck!
  • Arkansas vs LSU – the house was divided on this one, but LSU managed to pull out a win

Today…. cleaning up, The Blind Side, and hopefully getting a Christmas Tree up!

Friday at the Maxx

Yay for the weekend! I got to move into my new office at the hospital, which was exciting. I still have to get my office phone and printer set up, but so far it’s nice to have an office that’s not in the kitchen, next to the hot and steamy dishroom.

I spent part of the day writing a letter of recommendation for one of my college professors. It wasn’t even a professor I remember very well – he called me out of the blue earlier in the week, asking for a letter of support for a teaching award he’s been nominated for.  It was hard! Now I know how all those professors feel when they’re bombarded by students asking for letters, especially when they don’t know them well.

On my way home from work, after dropping off the letter for FedEx Overnight ($17!!!) I stopped by TJMaxx. Did I mention that today was payday??? haha. But seriously, I’ve been a little worried about this weekend’s cold forecast (mostly in the 40s and snow expected up on the mountains) and the fact that my winter clothes are still in Texas. And so… I found a nice fleece jacket for $16. But what else? A pair of cupcake flannel pajamas for $12!!! I couldn’t resist them, so I snatched them up. And I also bought some adorable little birdie notecards, for all those moments when you want to send a note to a friend. The cashier said “Looks like someone will be staying warm this weekend!”. That’s certainly my plan!

We have some guests this weekend – my mom’s cousin and his wife are here for their fall getaway to the mountains. The dogs are already showing off all their bad behavior.

Tomorrow is Georgia vs Vanderbilt in Nashville. Wish I could be there for the game. The Boy and I could go as alum, and cheer against one another! Anyway, the dawgs better win this one or we’ll all be seriously sad.

Adios and happy weekend everyone!

Sunday’s Thoughts

Here are a collection of my thoughts for the day:

  • I was excited to find this creamer today at Target. I have no idea if it will compare to Starbucks’ Pumpkin Spice Latte, but it’s worth a shot and so much cheaper! Should make my commute through farmland this week more delicious :)
  • I also picked up the new CD from Michael Buble today. Anyone listened to it yet? Thoughts??? It’s been a while since I’ve heard much from him, so yet another reason to be excited about my commute this week.
  • Is anyone else in love with the girl from the new Windows 7 commercial, and how she adorably mispronounces “responsive” into re-ponk-insive”??? I can’t get her voice out of my head. So cute. Maybe she needs to be adopted…
  • CVS coupons and ExtraCareBucks were my friend today. After scouring their weekly flyer from today’s paper, and comparing to my clipped coupons, I was able to stock up on detergent, deodorant, body wash, and pumpkin carving utensils and save almost $15. Gotta love it!
  • This time tomorrow and we’ll have DISH TV! Meaning I can record my shows (although I’m definitely watching House live… but maybe Big Bang Theory can wait) and have a channel selection greater than 10. I also lucked out and got HBO free for 3 months, so I’m hoping that’ll let me see the Seinfeld reunion! The Boy has been pretty pumped about it. As few Curb Your Enthusiasm shows as I’ve seen, I think it’ll be good. :)
  • Dinner tonight: leftover mock crab cakes. Not sure what’s on the side. Maybe I’ll whip up a nice rice pilaf or something. I need me some grains :)

Saturday Happenings

Good evening!

We’ve had a good Saturday so far. I was quite surprised to sleep until 9am this morning! The Knoxville Farmers Market opened at 9, but by the time we got ready, out the door and drove into knoxville (~30-40 minutes) it was a little after 11.

The market was actually very quiet today – probably due to the cool weather (60ish) and the mass quantities of people making their way to Neyland Stadium for the game that was about the start. I only had $5 in cash, so we weren’t able to pick up much:

  • crown of broccoli
  • a few heirloom tomatoes
  • a couple of yellow squash

There were some really interesting looking stalls: homemade soaps, dog treats/food, a cupcake stand (will be back for a review!!), and one from a local bakery. Still haven’t been able to find super low prices at farmers markets, but we press on. The market here runs through Thanksgiving, so hopefully I can make another trip at some point.

Next was a trip to Sam’s Club, which I haven’t visited in at least a year. I stocked up on a few of my food staples in bulk: Arnold’s Sandwich Thins, Stacy’s Pita Chips, Mini Babybells, Quaker Oatmeal Squares. I also finally gave into the hype and bought the 2010 edition of “Eat This, Not That.


I guess every RD should have a copy in her arsenal. If it will fit in my lab coat pocket, I might use it with patients. Visuals certainly are more effective than just listening to my voice say “No fried foods…. eat plenty of fruits and vegetables… try to get rid of sugary drinks”. I must sound like a broken record sometimes!

I really do wish that Mr Zinczenko found an RD to work with him on this book, especially after it’s become so popular and he’s written so many books to follow it. He means well, and it’s a simple, easy-to-read book, but I can’t agree with everything he says.

This lunch was a plate of baked scoops with salsa and leftover refried beans. Yum yum. Dinner for tonight will be some more of our favorite mock crab cakes, with a side of seasoned black beans/corn salsa. Yum!

I also picked up a pair of slippers from Target this afternoon. Priced at $5.99, I was ecstatic when they rang up $1.48!! Gotta love Target.

Pretty pumped about getting the coupons tomorrow. Super nerd, I know. I’m also hoping to get up early and a workout in at the gym before the rest of the day gets away from me. AND…. we signed up for Dish TV today, so Monday will bring me 100 channels (92 more than we have now!) and a DVR!!! :)