Sunday, May 12, 2019

Taking a break

I'm going to take a little break from blogging.  I have an online course I need to finish on infection control in a skilled nursing facility from the Centers for Disease Control.  It's about as exciting as it sounds, but it has to be done.  It consists of 24 modules and I've made it through 12.
Today I was called into work at 8:30 am because the state inspectors arrived for our annual survey.  When that happens, all managers have to come in and stay till they leave each day, so it's going to be a long week.  We couldn't believe they showed up on Mothers Day.  A lot of people had their plans messed up for the day...
Also, Bob's mom is doing very poorly.  You may remember that she came to my facility  for Rehab, but now is declining rapidly.  It's been a mixed blessing having her with me.  Bob's sister also works there as a dietician, so we are both able to check on her often.  It's hard though to see this big decline and then step back and keep working.  She is a Christian, so we know there is a much better place for her, and we are praying it won't be long.  
See you soon.

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Cooking Thursday

Usually when bananas get too brown around here, I make banana bread, but I do have another yummy treat to use those bananas for.  Try these - you will love them!

Frosted Banana Bars

1/2 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 ripe bananas, mashed

8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
2 teaspoons vanilla
3-4 cups powdered sugar

Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, sour cream and vanilla. Add salt, baking soda and flour to creamed mixture, then stir in bananas.
Spread into greased 15 x 10 x 1 baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes until toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Do not overbake. Cool.

For frosting - in large bowl beat the cream cheese, butter and vanilla until fluffy. Gradually beat in enough powdered sugar to reach the right consistency and frost cooled bars.
Store in refrigerator.

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Monday, May 6, 2019

Princess Party!

Saturday we had a Mother/Daughter Lunch at our church.  Heather has been busy, having just moved and wasn't able to come.  Laura came and took Alaina and Ruby.  The theme was a Princess Party with the reminder that we are daughters of the King.

 There were about 120 women and girls there.

Our lunch had a variety of pasta, which included macaroni and cheese.  This made Ruby happy because she had asked for it for breakfast and was sad when Aaron told her that wasn't on the breakfast menu!

 After lunch, the girls had their picture taken in this photo spot.

 They joined all the other girls to hear a story read.  It was the book 'God made you special' by Max Lucado.  The story reminds us that God made everyone special and unique!

 Then we played Princess Bingo.  The spots that are usually filled with numbers were filled with things that go with Princesses, Christian attributes and biblical queens.

There were 5 winners and Alaina was one of them.  She was so excited to take this flower home!

 They got to make wands with ribbons and stickers.

 The finished wands.

 Here are all the little Princesses gathered for a group shot.

Once they were all together, the little Princesses went on a parade through the room.

Before we left, we were served pink and purple cupcakes and ice cream.  Ruby was busy making sure she got the ice cream back to the table, and forgot her cupcake.  Alaina offered to get it for her.  Ruby said "Alaina is such a nice sister".  When Alaina came back with the cupcake, Ruby said "I love you Alaina,  you're my best friend".  Aww - melted my heart.

Ruby, me, Alaina, Laura

Sunday, May 5, 2019

A Day in my Life - May 1

May is here - what a wonderful month!  The snow is gone, the temps are rising, flowers are popping out.  It makes me happy!
Here's how I spent the first day of the month.

I was up at 6 and left the house at 7.

This was my view as I left for work, dreary and lots of rain!

I started work a little before 7:30.  I have a little flip calendar on my desk that has a different  verse or quote for the day.  Here's what it said on May 1.

Good verse for my job!

It was a very busy day.  Shortly after I arrived, 2 nurses came from our corporate office to do a mock survey.  They do this every year to try to prepare for our annual survey with the state. This involves them watching lots of things like treatments, med pass, meal delivery...   They also look at a lot of charts and ask lots of questions.
I am the Infection Control Nurse for our building so I had to bring my book for this year in and go over everything with them.  I'm happy to say they found no issues and had no suggestions for anything that I should change.
In the beginning of the month, I review anyone that had antibiotics ordered for the previous month, make sure I had them all entered into a computer program, mapped out to see if anything could have been spread from resident to resident or staff to resident. I'm always happy to have all the reports done on that for another month.
Our Physician Assistant also came in and I rounded with him to see several people.
When any survey is happening, whether it is a mock survey, or the real deal, the managers can't leave until they leave for the day.  So - I was there until 6:30.

When I left, the rain has stopped, but it was still cloudy.

 You can see that it is getting more green!

 When I was almost home, I had to stop to let these turkeys pass the road in front of me.

Bob had a meeting at church that night, so he had already been home, ate supper and was on his way when I got home. I made some lunches, hopped into the shower and got my pj's on, then grilled myself a turkey, tomato and cheese sandwich.

It was 7:30 by the time I ate.  I did a little reading, then watched Survivor when I am a huge fan of.

Bob got home before it was done and we did a little catching up.

After that I spent a few hours reviewing these online courses I have to do for work.  There are 20 parts to this course, and I just keep plugging away - have to get it done fairly soon!
When I finished them, I was off to bed.

Another good day!

Thursday, May 2, 2019

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Cooking Thursday

Today's recipe is one I've shared before, but I know more people have gotten Instantpots since then, so when I made it last week, I thought I would share again.
This is one of the easiest recipes to make, because everything gets thrown into the pot, you turn it on, and soon you have a yummy meal!  I made a batch of this for Heather and Andrew when they moved, because it reheats well and they both liked it.
It's called a burrito bowl, not sure why because it's not really like a burrito, but it's kind of like Chipotle's burrito bowl.

Instantpot Burrito Bowl

2 tablespoon minced onion
1  tablespoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon chili powder 
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs or breasts, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 (15.5 ounce) can black beans, rinsed  
1 cup long grain white rice uncooked
1 cup salsa
2 cups OR 1 (14.5 ounce) can chicken broth 
1/4 cup chopped cilantro for serving, optional
1/4 cup grated Cheddar cheese for serving, optional

Stir together the minced onion, garlic powder, chili powder and salt in Instantpot.
Add the chicken, black beans, rice, and salsa. Stir.
Pour chicken broth over the mixture. Lock the lid in place. Set a 10-minute cook time on high pressure.
Once the cook time completes, quickly release the pressure.
Open the lid away from your face. Stir with a wooden spoon or rubber spatula. 

Serve with chopped cilantro and grated cheese.

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Monday, April 29, 2019

Visiting the Farm Museum

Saturday was moving day for Heather and Andrew.  I was going to try to be there to help, but Laura and Aaron also wanted to help.  As Laura is stronger and more able to carry around boxes, I said I would watch the girls and she could help.  I think I got the better end of that deal!
So the girls came overnight.  We had to go to my Dad's to get his meds set up, and then we made another fun stop!  Their is a Farm Museum about 15 minutes from our house.  They were having a petting zoo on Saturday, so I took the girls.

 The farm museum.

 We entered through the silo.  The view looking up was pretty cool!

 There were lots of little animals to see; chickens, goats, lambs and bunnies.  The girls loved the bunnies best!

They liked watching this little one eat a carrot.

 There were even little rats there.  Ruby wasn't too sure about them, and I must admit I feel the same way!

This activity board showed how corn comes from the field to a cereal box.

 There were other fun things to do, like making a chicken in a nest.

Here's Ruby with hers.

 The thing they liked best was making their own soap.

They made it and them got to come back in 20 minutes to pick it up.

They were both proud of their soaps!

 Outside was a sheep being sheared.

 Look at all that wool!  He looked pretty skinny when he was done.

There was even a young cow.  Alaina liked him, Ruby didn't want to go to close.

There was also face painting, but it had a very long wait.  After standing in line for a while and not moving, I persuaded the girls to let me do it for them at home.

Butterflies on the cheeks = happy girls!

The move went well.  Bob and I went after he got out of work to help put some things together and do a little unpacking.  Such a good day!

Sunday, April 28, 2019

It's the most wonderful time of the year...

That phrase comes from a Christmas song, but I think Spring is the most wonderful time of the year!  Fresh air, open windows, warm breezes, blue skies, trees turning green and flowers popping up just makes me happy!
We had beautiful weather last week and many of those things are happening. This weekend we had snow predicted and areas very close to us had several inches of snow.  We did get snow but it didn't stick.  Here's to the end of snow for this year!
Here's a few pics from last week.

 Daffodils blooming!

A tree ready to turn green.

 Wild violets in the woods.

Our dogwood tree just ready to bloom.

 I've seen a few flowering trees in full bloom!

The trees on our road have that hazy look they get right before the leaves pop open.

Beautiful green leaves on some bushes in our back yard.

I love Spring!

For behold, the winter is past; the rain is over and gone. The flowers appear on the earth, the time of singing has come and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land.
Song of Solomon 2:11-12

Thursday, April 25, 2019

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Cooking Thursday

Todays recipe is not so much a recipe, but the method I use to make beef roast.  Bob's mom showed it to me when we were first married and I've never found a better way in all those years.  It's easy and the roast turns out tasty and tender.

Mom's Beef Roast

Beef roast, any size
Kitchen Bouquet Browning sauce

Brush Kitchen Bouquet over entire roast and place in slow cooker.
Add water so roast is 1/2 to 3/4 submerged.
Cook on low for about 12 hours.
I often start this in the evening, then refrigerate overnight and put it back on in the morning.  It doesn't seem possible to over cook it, the roast gets more tender the longer it cooks.
The broth makes delicious gravy!

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Monday, April 22, 2019

A country road

Last week I brought a meal to a family from our church.  They don't live very close so I ended up driving on some country roads that I haven't driven on before.
I love country roads and seeing new things.  Here's a few photos I took along the drive.

 The first hyacinths I've seen this year!  Such a pretty scene on this hillside.

This made you smile right?  This tree trunk was at the end of a long driveway and it looks like someone decided it needed some paint added.

 Check out this beautiful home!

I came across this old schoolhouse.

And then I saw this - not what I expected to see on a country road in West Michigan!

It's a reproduction of Stonehenge.  I can't imagine what it cost to put this up, buying the stones, cutting them to the right shape and size and then getting them all set up.  It's not something I would want filling my yard up, but it was cool to see!

Thanks for coming along on this ride!