Monthly Archives: January 2013

Thursday Thoughts

Yesterday it was 65*… yes in January… today the high temperature is supposed to be 27*.  Needless to say it’s COLD!!!  We have started the day with a 2 hour delay (for flooding or wind advisory I really don’t know) which just might kill me today.  Normally I would enjoy a delay for the kids.  Morning is when I get my best hugs and snuggles and let’s face it if I can sit in my comfies snuggled with my Bugs and my coffee…all is good in the world.  But today they are wound up with silliness, bursting with loudness and my head is threatening to explode from pressure and pain.

I’ve had headaches for as long as I can remember but today’s is over the top.  So far I’ve taken excedrin migraine, had coffee, drank a couple extra glasses of water, took my vitamins and still no relief.  Holistic and herbal remedy solutions welcomed please!!!

***Follow Up…My migraine progressed through the day – so bad that I was literally sick.   No relief.  Today (friday) I made an herbal tea that FINALLY took the edge off enough that I was able to function.  Makes me think I want to do more with herbs – even went to the local used book store GENTLY USED BOOKS and bought a few books.  I used to have a selection of herbal medicine books along with crystal healing but I got rid of all of them years ago.   Not sure why really…

Random Thoughts…

Wow…I didn’t realize that an entire week had passed since last posting! I have to get a better self schedule! Any tips on time management and productive daily schedules from you Type A people out there? Because even with the best intentions, I start task #1 and end up getting distracted by tasks #2, #3 and #4 only to then think of a few extras. At the end of the day my list has grown and I’ve started multiple items and finished none 😦

So since a week has passed, let’s get caught up…Girl Scout Cookie Time started (joy of joys – I’m Cookie Mom…again),  LoveBug sprained her wrist, I committed to getting healthy and fit with a great friend (who will absolutely hold me accountable!),  I catered an event for 75 people, I helped work a PTC fundraiser event with the Harlem Wizards, had a snow (really ice) day with the Bugs during which I played referee for a good solid 5 hours of the day.  That brings us to today!

So here are a few of my random thoughts for today  (and please…don’t judge me…these really are the things that have been on my mind today!)

  • how does laundry seem to just multiply and grow no matter how much time is spent on it???  (I’m convinced my friend M is MAGIC because she has been known to do at LEAST 8 loads of laundry plus clean the entire house in less than 6 hours!!  She is A-MAZING … please use a sing song voice when reading…)
  • why are little boys so incredibly gross???
  • is it wrong to want to just curl up under a big soft blanket for a few hours?
  • i’ve always said a little dirt won’t hurt…which is good considering Bug is so gross most of the time…but a restaurant that charges $100+ for dishes consisting of the stuff???  A french restaurant in Japan, aptly named Ne Quittez Pas (translated to “please don’t leave.”  seriously..enough said) is doing just that!  absolutely ridiculous if you ask me…which no one did but oh well.  Apparently the “dirt” consists of coffee grounds and palm fiber.  So I guess it’s fancy dirt so that makes it ok.
  • why are little boys so incredibly GROSS??!!!???  (yes for the 2nd time)
  • i love bartering and trading
  • it’s so sad how little money from girl scout cookie sales go to the troops…at least in our troop which has only 5 girls
  • i am so thank*full for coffee
  • WHY for the love of everything holy, WHY ARE LITTLE BOYS SO GROSS?????


Daily Thoughts

In our house we used to have Taco Tuesday but since this year LoveBug’s Ballet is on Tuesdays we’ve switched to Mexican Mondays.  We also have Pizza & Movie Night on Fridays.  The world doesn’t come to an end if we don’t stick to this schedule (although there have been several meltdowns by Bug when we have skipped Mexican Monday!) but having them adds some fun structure to our week.  I’m thinking we should add Wino Wednesday…wait that would only be for me…okay Weird Wednesday?  Anyway I was thinking about all the things I’ve thought about sharing on here and I thought “Hey! I should have certain things that I blog about each day.”  Personally I think it’s a brilliant idea…ok maybe not “brilliant” but pretty good 🙂

So here’s what I’m thinking for the lineup…feel free to make suggestions and post ideas here too!

Monday Madness…Tasty Tuesday… Wacky Wednesday… Thursday Thoughts… Family Friday… Simple Saturday… Sunday Fun*Day

“Magic” Chicken Soup~ Recipe

Here is my “magic” chicken soup recipe, simplified:


chicken stock – homemade is best or an organic low salt store bought stock
1-2 garlic cloves, minced
1-2 carrots, peeled and finely chopped
1/2 small onion, finely chopped
1-2 celery stalks, finely chopped
1-2 chicken breasts, cooked and finely chopped or shredded
fresh ginger
fresh thyme
salt and pepper


This is a very casual recipe – use amounts that suit your individual tastes.
In large stock pot heat 2 TBS oil over medium heat for 2 min. Add 1-2 TBS butter and carrots, onions, celery and garlic. Saute until veggies are soft then add chicken. Saute additional 3-4 minutes then add chicken stock. Use 4-8 cups depending on how much soup you want to make. Finely grate 2-3 tsp fresh ginger and add 1 TBS fresh thyme and salt/pepper to taste. You can add a fresh squeeze of lemon juice too!

If you like noodles in your soup – cook a handful of egg noodles separately and place in bowl. Pour soup over top noodles. Store noodles and soup separately to avoid over cooked, mushy noodles.


Chicken Soup for Mommy

Well over the past week or so, J has been super sick and both the Bugs have been fighting colds. I thought I had successfully avoided it….I thought wrong. It came on fast and furious but definitely was not as exciting as the movie trailer of the same name. I felt so dizzy and achy that I actually went to see the doctor who was so incredibly un-helpful to tell me that she “doubted it was the flu although she was confident it was viral.” In otherwords, no meds just suffer through it…oh and have a nice day. UGH!!! So I did what any Mommy of 2 would do: I snuggled on the couch with my Bugs and followed them to bed before 9:30pm last night.
Now in a perfect world I would have slept until 10am this morning and woke up feeling refreshed and great! Instead I woke up feeling like my head was going to split open, nauseaus, cold and achy…yuck yuck and more yuck! flu2
As you all know though life doesn’t stop when Mommy is sick. I took some Excedrin (tic-tacs as my good friend A and now I refer to them) and did my Saturday morning necessities: weekly meal delivery, quick stops at the food store and pharmacy then back home to crash. It’s days like today that I’m so glad I’m not doing this parenting thing on my own and that J is an involved Daddy. He helped with lunches and settling the kiddos so I could rest on the sofa and sleep…and sleep I did…for 3 hours.
I woke up in time to cook noodles for the Bugs for dinner and for me…homemade chicken soup with garlic, ginger and thyme. I’m counting on all the studies of it being a natural anti-viral, anti-fungal and antibiotic being 100% accurate because I don’t have time for another sick day. There’s laundry to be done, clothes to be put away, rooms to be cleaned. Mommies don’t get to have sick days…there’s too much “stuff” for us to do!

Desserts in Heaven

Today I breathed deeply and read the following:

“They say sometimes when you know it’s coming, bad news is easier to hear and to process. They are wrong.

My grandfather was John Robert Koestel, Bob to most, although to us grandkids he was always Pops. He was born in 1920, served in the Army (received 3 bronze stars) during WW II, lived in the Philadelphia area his entire life. He was married 69 happy years to my grandmother Catherine. He had one son, three grandchildren and two great grandchildren. While all of these things ar true, they are not the heart of who he was.

When I think about my Pops so many things come to mind. I remember Saturdays at my grandparents house. It was always loud, fun and full of laughs…a weekly family reunion of sorts. There was always card playing out on the porch. That was loud and full of cigar smoke…and us kids running through messing up bets and tryihg to steal some change. Yet Pops never told us to leave or that we couldn’t play…he knew we’d soon get bored and move on, probably outside to play in the field or our amazing playhouse that he built for us.

Pops was an amazing self-taught carpenter. He was happiest working with his hands. He built a full scale playhouse where we spent hours playing and many nights sleeping. He built bookshelves, desks, paper plate holders, toy boxes and the list goes on includingn a very large very detailed victorian dollhouse. It’s almost bigger than me but even the smallest detail was not overlooked by Pops.

He loved building things but he also loved kidding around, making us all laugh. When I travelled to San Francisco with MomMom and Pops he sang to me up and down Fishermans Wharf. Partly because he was always singing but mostly I think because at the time it embarassed me (a lot!) so it was very funny for him.

That same trip I got us totally and completely lost at the very end of the trolley line. We had to take a taxi back to our hotel and not once did Pops make me feel badly about it. He teased me for the rest of the trip and for a few years after that but not once did he yell or get upset with me. We just got back to the hotel a different way. That’s the kind of grandfather that he was.

Pops was a good and loving man. He was steady – quick to offer help and keep you on task to get the job done. He hated waiting in lines and he loved desserts especially chocolate cake. Even this past year when meal times were a challenge he would always eat cake, cookies or chocolate covered graham crackers. My children loved bringing treats for him because they knew he would share with them too!

I’m so thank*full for the many years of memories that I have with my Pops.. I’m thank*full too that my children had the opportunity to create special memories with him too.

This past year has been difficult, watching Pops lose touch a little bit every day. On good days there were laughs to be had. On bad days just sadness at what was being lost.

His confusion and pain has ended and I’m thank*full for that although I will miss him dearly. I know I will be okay…we will all be okay. We will have more laughs and more tears and more memories created with those we love. Pops may not be here but he’ll always be with us. He has touched all of our lives and each of us have memories that will keep his spirit close, especially when there is dessert to be had.” ❤

****thank you J for your encouragement and your humor….without you there today I wouldn’t have had the courage or strength to get through. ❤

Remembering Pops


For as long as I can remember my Pops has always been around. With his goofy smiles, silly teasing, funny jokes, scratchy beard, lingering cigar and pipe smoke smell. In almsot every important memory I have my Pops is present….until now. My Pops turned 93 on January 2nd. The day passed at Berks Heim with a visit from my Dad and Mom Mom. I’d like to think that my Pops was aware of the day but if he was aware would he have been sad? He had lost so much of who he was… This was the first year in my life that I wasn’t able to wish him happy birthday and I feel so guilty. I know he wouldn’t have held it against me though he might have teased me about it.

On January 10th my Pops and my MomMom were married 69 years. That is so incredible to me. Every day my Pops would kiss my MomMom 3 times in the morning. He gave her flowers regularly, held doors for her, held her hand. He was and always will be her “sweetheart” and I’m sure in his heart he felt the same.

My Pops passed away this past Saturday morning. It shouldn’t have been a surprise considering his condition but for me it was. My tendency is to box anything uncomfortable up and just not feel it but I know that I can’t do that any more so I’m allowing myself to feel all of this. I can say without any doubt that it totally sucks. I miss my Pops…I guess I’ve been missing him for quite some time though. I’m so glad that he had the chance to know my children and that they were able to know him and all his wonderful silliness. I can only hope that he watches over us all and sends a little of his silliness and love from heaven ❤

adam with pop2


adam with pop

dad and pops