Monday, July 31, 2023

This Week on the Dining Table

The "Boring & More Boring Menus" Edition.....                                            

This is day 57 of the "diet".  After the colonoscopy I treated myself the next day after a PT session to late lunch out for Chinese food on Friday.  Love me some Asian cuisine.  Got Sesame Chicken and Broccoli(no rice).

My PCP is on board with this way of eating to reach a short term goal so no unsolicited advice on this eating plan please.  While I appreciate the concerns I am fine and I am losing weight.  I haven't had any sugar(other than a bit of honey in some hot tea)nor any white food.....bread, potatoes, rice, pasta since returning from the cruise on June 4th.  But I am holding fast to my plan far.

Onward to the meal planning!
This is what was planned for last week.......
1. Sunday-Protein drink, 1 apple
2. Monday--Watermelon, Roasted Broccoli and Carrots, Yogurt cup(maybe)
3. Tuesday--Chicken Parm, either more Yogurt or an apple
4  Wednesday--Prep Day, Clear Liquids
5. Thursday--?
6.  Friday--A dish with Shrimp, more Broccoli
7. Saturday--Yogurt drink, Collards or whatever is fresh at the store in the way of Veggies

And here's what actually happened........
1. Sunday-Protein drink, 1 apple
2. Monday--Watermelon, Roasted Broccoli and Carrots, 
3. Tuesday--Yogurt cup before PT, Chicken Parm, small Caesar Salad, 6 chunks of Watermelon 
4  Wednesday--Clear Liquids(drinks), Bone Broth, Jell-O ;-)
5. Thursday--a Cranberry/Walnut/Apple salad, a Hamburger patty w/Cheddar Cheese
6.  Friday--Lunch-Sesame Chicken w/Veggies(no rice)out-my reward for the procedure on Thursday, Dinner was 1 ear of corn and a bowl of Collards
7. Saturday-- Spinach Salad
Most of the plan happened when planned except for Friday and Saturday.

I also drink, water, iced tea(unsweetened), and the odd zero sugar soda or Zero sugar Powerade/Gatorade and keep my stomach full and it also keeps me hydrated.  I mostly stick with the water or unsweet iced teas with lemon added.

This one mini-meal per day where I change between vegetable matter and a lean protein and a yogurt cup when these other meals won't suffice.  There also is a regime of supplements I am currently on, either to maintain my body's condition or were already taking them for various conditions.

I guess you'd call this an extreme intermittent fasting deal with many supplements to keep all my innards working and healthy.  I consulted my PCP and my food plan was given the green light and my blood work came back aok. 8-)

What got taken out of the freezer last week...
*  1 bag of Broccoli
*  4 portions of Chicken
*  1 Hamburger patty

What got put into the freezer last week....
*  3 portions(for 2)Salmon
*  5 lbs. Ground Beef(made into patties, meatloaf, meatballs, hunks)
*  2 TV dinners
*  1 Pizza(for Hubs)
*  1 bag Green Beans
*  2 bags of Stir-Fry Veggies
*  3 bags of Chicken(1 Grilled, 2 Breaded)

Last week we spent $287.47 on grocery shopping.
We stocked up on more dog food, Protein drinks, Gatorade(for prep day), corn meal and assorted things we were out of as well as clearance produce deals, ready to eat salads and various meat deals.

Total shopping comes to $595.73 for July.   
There are 0 shopping days left in July.

I've earned $168.52 on Ibotta in July.
I've earned $22.75 on Shopmium in July.
I've earned $21.00 on Coupons dotcom in July.
I've earned $1.00 on Kroger Cash Back in July.
I've earned $0 on Checkout 51 in July.
I've earned 534 points from food shopping on Fetch in July.
I've earned 4,085 points from food shopping on Shop Kick in July.
I've earned 46 SB from food shopping on Swag Bucks in July.

That is $213.27 in rebates(not counting the Shop Kick/Swag Bucks/Fetch)on $595.73 of grocery spending so in reality it's $382.46 in food spending after the 5 rebate apps I count.  That's a much more "normal" amount spent for me.

My savings percentage for the last week was 36.63% and the monthly savings total for July comes in at 39.18% so far spent.

Leftovers going into this week...nothing but a mac and cheese(Hubs), a helping of roasted veg, 2 Chicken Parms and a whole "mess" of Collards.

Here is this week's "food plan".....
1. Sunday-Chicken Marsala with Mushrooms, Collard Greens
2. Monday--Roasted Broccoli and Carrots, SF Jell-O
3. Tuesday--Protein drink, an apple, leftover SF Jell-O
4  Wednesday--Zucchini Fritters, more yogurt?
5. Thursday--Protein drink, a yogurt cup
6.  Friday--Something leftover(Collards)?
7. Saturday--Something else leftover(Chicken Marsala?)
I also drink, water(usually with lemon), iced tea(unsweetened), hot tea with lemon and honey and the odd zero sugar soda or Zero sugar Powerade/Gatorade and keep my stomach full and it also keeps me hydrated.   I mostly stick with the water or unsweet iced teas with lemon added.
This one mini-meal per day where I change between vegetable matter and a lean protein and a yogurt cup when these other meals won't suffice is not hard to do once you get past the first 3 or 4 days.  There also is a regime of supplements I am currently on, either to maintain my body's condition or were already taking them for various conditions.

What do I need to buy to fix everything on this menu?  Not a thing.  I don't plan on going to the store this week except for a birthday card for my only Aunt.  Hubs is welcome to have the Marsala and the Fritters meals but otherwise he's on his own to fix what he wishes. :-)

What is getting fixed and served at your house this week?

Was last week's plan successful, did you go off plan or did you not even plan what was going to be eaten last week?

Any deals on food at your stores this week?  I confess that I don't need to buy anything right now nor have I had any desire to read the ads.


Sunday, July 30, 2023

Music for a Sunday

This song brings back many memories for me of my mother.  She was born in a log cabin and lived there in the piedmont of Southern Virginia, on the edge of the old plantation lands my great grandparents owned, until she was 6 years old.  

My maternal GreatGrands had 12 children(one of which was my maternal Grandmother)and as each child married they were gifted a piece of land that had been part of the Plantation once known as "Roxabel".  That is where my grandfather, Wirt, built this cabin after he and my grandmother, Lillian, were wed.  So you see my mother grew up in the Depression era and heard all the old country and bluegrass songs around her.

My mother standing on the porch of "her" humble log cabin at age 5.

The song ion this clip was one of mom's favorites.  She would sing it to each of my children as babies and then teach it to them as they became toddlers.  It was their special song betwixt them. At her funeral my children came up at the service and sang it one last time to her.  It's a precious memory for me.

I found this quartet a few years ago on the internet(YouTube)called "The Dead South".  They are described as a folk/bluegrass ensemble and hail from Canada.(Figures, a group of Canadians supplying the world with old Southern standards plus writing new ones. lol) 

Anyway, many of their songs and arrangements of said songs "spoke to my soul".  I've shared one or two of their songs on the blog in the past.

This one came up in my YouTube feed this morning and it's sweetness but grittiness in it's presentation touched me deeply.

I hope you enjoy it too. 8-)

I hope y'all each have a good day.


Saturday, July 29, 2023

Great Road Trip of 2017.....Part Seven/Day Six

Part One of the Great Western Road Trip is HERE
Part Two of the Great Western Road Trip is HERE
Part Three of the Great Western Road Trip is HERE
Part Four of the Great Western Road Trip is HERE
Part Five of the Great Western Road Trip is HERE
Part Six of the Great Western Road Trip is HERE

We set out after breakfast traveling back Southward until we hit this landmark off in the distance.....

It was one of the few landmarks for those heading west on the Oregon Trail.  Seeing this meant you were on the right path.

It was called "Elk Penis" by the Native Americans but when folks back East started reporting this rock formation in the newspapers "Elk Penis" wouldn't have been a nice way to describe it so the news outlets at that time started referring to it as "Chimney Rock".

There was a small exhibit in a building near the rock formation(though the landmark is on private property and you couldn't get very close to it)

They had a tray of samples of Hardtack in the exhibit that you could try(and it would drum up work for your dentist if you did bite into one).

Yikes!!   They had a wooden boardwalk from the parking lot to the exhibit building due to some nasty critters.

Hubs with Elk Penis in the background.

A zoom-in of the land formations.  Over the last 150+ years the rocks have weathered away a bit.

My Elk Penis shot.
You know darn well I'm going to take every legitimate opportunity to say "Elk Penis".  Hehehe

You could buy a map of the route the Mormons took i the gift shop.

I posed wearing a bonnet worn by the girls/women of that time period.  Do you think I'd make a fetching Prairie gal?


I suppose kids were asking this question on road trips all the way back then too! lol

"Are We There Yet?" Book sold in the gift shop.

Various topographical maps showing the main trail to the West coast and then various
alternatives and cutoffs.

And there is my cousin's Sublette Cutoff between South Pass and Fort Bridger, Wyoming.

An old wheel from a wagon that made the journey.  If only that wheel could talk.....

We just missed the "Convergence on Sacred Ground" in  nearby Ash Hollow, Nebraska.

And did I  mention yet that this was an active rattlesnake area yet???

But we didn't see any while we were there.  When I saw the first sign I practically ran into the exhibit/gift shop building! lol

We headed West on Rte. 26 a bit to near Scotts Bluff and then Northwest.

Lots of farm equipment sales lots out here.

Getting near the state line.

And finally we hit Wyoming.

I saw this feed yard sign and couldn't help but picture this guy.....

Loved him in "Cyrano".....

And then we were behind a carnival concession truck as we approached our next destination.  Soon afterwards we hit the sign for the turnoff........

This was the fort that began as "Fort William", named for my cousin, Bill Sublette, by his partner Robert Campbell.  They used it as a home base as they ranged over the Missouri River, the Bighorn, Yellowstone and Sweetwater River Country from 1823 to 1833.  At various times he worked for and/or owned various trapping companies hunting mostly beaver as it was in great demand over in Europe to line the outsides of men's top hats.  He fought and lived among the Native Americans and unwittingly opened up the West to settlers from back East.

The For was renamed "Fort John" when it was sold to the American Fur Company, before the US Army bought it and renamed it again as "Fort Laramie".

We trekked in 103F heat down to the main building to pick up headphones and recorded tapes that played information about the various numbered stops around the fort.  But first we checked out the indoor exhibits in there.

Above is a picture(a drawing)of the first wagon train of settlers led by Smith, Jackson and Sublette in 1830.

An image of Robert Campbell.

It never was designed to be a fort like you see on those old TV Westerns.  It was not a totally enclosed encampment as the picture below shows.

Me in front of one of the exhibits.

There was what was called a Rendezvous once a year (also referred to as the Rocky Mountain Rendezvous)where trappers, traders of various items and native peoples met to buy and sell furs and resupply themselves before moving back into the Wilderness to trap.

The Fort's location was optimal, at a bend in the river, so you could see whomever, friend or enemy, was approaching it both by river and by land.

And of course the gift shop in the main building was selling various books among other tchotchkes and lookie here, there's a book about my cousin there!  I have a copy but didn't buy it there(I got it cheaper online.) 8-)

So we began to our 3 HOUR trek around the Fort at this point.

Oh goody!  Another "watch out for snakes" sign. I am taking a wild guess here but they mean rattlesnakes.  sigh.

Is that a big cannon or are you happy to see me? hehehe
And yes, I am a 12 year old boy sometimes....

A repeating rifle of some sort mounted on wheels.

And another cannon.....

At this point in the day I wish "I" was sitting on one of those benches in the shade there.

Hubs posing with a cannon.

The fort had an officer's quarters room behind plexiglass you could view....

A building with Officer's quarters or offices.

Note the stove in the room behind in this interior shot.  Blazing hot at Fort Laramie in the Summer(trust me, I was there for it!)but lots and lots of snow and cold in the Winter there.

Some taxidermy in this room.

Married officers lived at Fort Laramie with their wives and children too.  Single officers also lived there. Below is a dining room all set for a meal to be served.  There's a sideboard like you'd see in any home of that time back East as well as a period high chair for a toddler.

I spotted some wildlife(non stufffed)but thankfully it was a rabbit and not a rattler!

The fort even had recreational areas like this room for playing cards and such as well as a bar.  These rooms were also behind plexiglass so excuse the reflection of me in the photos.
And taxidermy was a "thing" back then.  Well that must have kept the men occupied when they weren't on duty or doing drills.

Awww, love bird deer.  Well at least their heads. 8-)
Another officer's quarters/house.

Of course the fort had a post office.  I wonder if mail service was as bad(slow) as it is around here now?

At this point we had been walking around for 2 hours in that heat.  

Thankfully they had a building set up as an old fashioned an ice cream and Sasparilla(Sasaparilla?) soda parlor where you could quench your thirst and cool off, though it was not air conditioned.

Anything liquid in 103F heat would have tasted good.  They could have scooped dirty water out of the Laramie River and served it to me and I would have been glad for it!

Yay!  More animal heads.

They also had a couple guys dressed up in period Army clothing.  I snapped this photo of a "soldier" getting off duty and heading back to the barracks.

Hubs posing next to a Conestoga wagon.  Not that any of his ancestors used one of those to go West.  It would have had to float all the way from Sicily or the Netherlands or Germany.
The furthest West his ancestors got was New Jersey(except for his paternal grandparents, they lived for a time in Eastern Ohio)! lol

Here, as the sign says, is the Enlisted Men's Barracks, the dining hall specifically.

A desk by a pot belly stove for writing reports.  I guess that stove gave off enough heat so your fingers wouldn't freeze up while writing those reports.

Period benches lining the front of the barracks and mess hall.
Ah, sweet shade!

That Barracks building was huge and went on forever.....

Another view of the Barracks.

The US Government named this incarnation of Fort William for the tributary of the Platte River which runs by the bend in the river called the Laramie.  The Laramie River was named for a French fur trapper who settled near here in 1815.  His name was Jacques La Ramèe and he was born in Yamaska, British Canada in 1784.  

He is said to have held the first of the "Rendezvous" meetings here near where the Platte River bends.
There is no definitive answer on how he died(drowned in the river is the usual cause given)but he set off in the Winter of 1820 to check his trap lines and his body wasn't discovered until after he didn't show up for a Rendezvous(these mountain men led solitary lives in the Wilderness so it wasn't until others gathered for him to be missed)in the Fall of 1821.  So both the Fort and the river it fronts were named in his honor, albeit an Anglicized version of his name.
You can read about Jacque La Ramèe HERE if you wish.

After 3 hours with sweat pouring off of us, we were off to our next stop for the night.