candied almonds

candied almonds after.

The holidays are upon us. Years past I’ve always made Christmas Crack and while the recipe makes a lot (I like to give something edible and yummy as little gifts) and is damn freaking tasty, it’s also kind of a pain to make. And, having lost 50 pounds recently, I just didn’t want the temptation so I searched for something easier- but just as yummy as a treat- and came across Slow Cooker Cinnamon Almonds on Pinterest.

Wow.

These are seriously so freaking delicious. And easy. And delicious. And they smell amazing. And they’re delicious! I read different recipes (which were all the same) and comments and kind of did my own thing, which is why I’m calling them Candied Almonds and posting my own recipe.

Ready for something fantastic and easy and oh so delicious that will make your house smell so incredible?

In a bowl, combine 1 cup white sugar, 1 cup brown sugar, 2 Tablespoon cinnamon (I only had like 1 Tablespoon so I also added some Nutmeg) and mix. In another, larger bowl beat one egg white and 2 Teaspoon Vanilla extract until nice and frothy. Then add your almonds to this and make sure to stir and coat every almond with the froth. Once that’s done, add your sugar mixture and mix mix mix mix mix.

candied almonds before

 

Then spray a crockpot with cooking spray, dump the almonds inside, cover, and cook on low for 3-4 hours, stirring every 20 minutes or so. About an hour before time is up, add a little water (I added some water to my cinnamon jar to get all the cinnamon I could since I was too lazy to go to the store on the Sunday before Thanksgiving for cinnamon) and stir stir stir. And keep checking on it and stirring it until most of the liquid dissipates.

When that happens, after about 3-4 hours total, dump mixture onto parchment paper and, with clean hands, separate almonds or they will stay clumped together. Let sit and cool for HOURS. Then you can jar up (the remainder- because let’s be honest, you’re going to be eating a LOT of this in the process… you know… to test it out and ensure it all tastes the way it should) and give someone a gift of these fantastic yummies!

candied almonds after 1.

 

first thing in the morning and i already need a bloody nap

I had another fucked up dream last night. They don’t happen often, but when they do they sit with me for a long, long time. I don’t think it would be such a big deal if it didn’t involve a very crucial person in my family. And how we “behave” in the dreams. There’s always… ALWAYS… an odd sexual tension between us in these dreams and it’s just not right. Not at all. It’s downright fucking disturbing.

At 42, is it possible that I’ve repressed some majorly fucked up shit that may have happened to me as a child until now? In my dreams we’re both adults, but I just… I mean… It doesn’t make sense.

I have to believe it’s just poor sleeping habits or something.

I have to believe there’s something else about these stupid fucking fucked up dreams than what I’m left with feeling and reeling in upon waking up.

Little white cups with foil adhered on top. They lined the top shelf in the fridge. Mama would eat one here and there. She wasn’t one to share her food, yet she never tried hiding the yogurt. And when I asked if I could have one, I found out why. YUCK! I never really understood the appeal of yogurt.

And then Greek Yogurt entered the market (or I became more cognizant of its existance?).

unnamed

I can’t get enough of this stuff.

I feel so grown up sometimes.

i cried so much that day

It’s been nine years since the phone’s loud ring woke me out of a slumber. Nine years since my mom told me my grandfather had fallen and hit his head just before bed– that she had to call 911 and that he was en route to the hospital.

I knew it the moment I heard the shakiness in her voice that he was gone.

They didn’t pronounce him dead until after they got him to the hospital so it was technically November 8, 2005 when this happened. But I always remember it as the 7th.

November fucking seventh.

I spent that day at work. I believe it was a Tuesday.

My brother called me in the afternoon to tell me he had enough with his son’s attitude and was going to be granting Jordan’s wish to go live with his mother who never wanted anything to do with the boy. But Jordan was 13, my brother was on disability with little money coming in, and they were constantly fighting. So Marco took the easy way out and let Jordan go.

I cried so much that day.

I left work and headed out to my brother’s house an hour away. I had to give my nephew a hug before he left. I guess I knew it then that our lives were all going to be so very different from that moment on.

I wasn’t there when his mother picked him up, but I was there when she left him 9 years prior. I was there on his first day of Kindergarten. I was there at all of his soccer games. I was there helping him with his spelling. I was there teaching him how to tie his shoes. I was there going on bike rides with him. I was there feeding him dinner at night and getting him off to school in the mornings.

After saying goodbye to Jordan and trying my best to get him and his dad to talk, I drove home that night in tears.

I cried so much that day.

By the time I got home I was so spent that I just undressed and climbed into bed as soon as I got in the door. And then the phone rang. And then it was cemented: my life was forever changed.

Not all anniversary’s are happy ones. Like this one. November 7th. The day my brother stopped talking to my nephew and the day the most wonderful man in the world left this earth.

Fuck you November 7.

1994

It was definitely his eyes that caught my attention. They were quite beautiful. Blue. Big. Kind-looking. And the fact that he got stoned on the daily only seemed to brighten his eyes even more. Interesting thing that pot or crying does to one with light, bright eyes–makes them even more brighter. I know as my eyes are light as well–especially when compared to my dark hair and complexion. (I’ve got lots of experience with trying to hide my eyes when unhappy, after spending time crying. Sometimes for no real good reason, really. Or when there was a good reason. Like the weeks and months following a miscarriage when just the sight or sound of a small child moved me to tears.)

Glenn’s eyes weren’t ever really sad. On the contrary. I remember finding them so soothing, comforting. I remember not wanting to stop looking at them. And the fact that he seemed to want to look into mine as well… oh the butterflies.

I probably lost twenty pounds that Fall.

how to ROCK your curly (and maybe even gray) hair

Step 1: Get a good DRY cut. Preferably from someone who’s experienced cutting curly hair DRY. Without combing it out, without wetting it down first.

Step 2: THROW AWAY YOUR COMB or brush.

Step 3: HYDRATE your hair.

Step 4: Be patient.

how to rock your curls

This video is pretty good for what you need to do once you get a good cut.

For me, personally, I just use whatever shampoo I want (though I’m sure the No Poo is what I should be using) as well as Aussie MOIST Conditioner to save some money. But I ABSOLUTELY use the Devacurl Gel and will forever and always, amen.

• I never use a comb or brush. EVER.

• I apply loads of conditioner to sopping wet hair and that’s the ONLY TIME I detangle– and only via use of my fingers.

• I wet my hair nearly every single day, but I don’t always use shampoo. In fact, I only shampoo twice a week max. However, when I do get it wet, I do ALWAYS use conditioner and the Devacurl gel.

• I NEVER rinse out all the conditioner—I flip my head over in the shower so I’m bending forward and the water gently rolls down my back and onto my head. And while it’s doing that, I’ll gently scrunch my hair so that it’s not sopping wet and so that some of the conditioner does get out (otherwise it tends to build up on my scalp).

• Then, IN THE SHOWER, I apply the Devacurl- just like in the video for the most part though I don’t “smooth” it on as much as the video. I just kinda scrunch it onto my hair, which is VERY wet.

• I NEVER blow dry.

• I rarely use those clips- instead I use a head band, which I don’t take out till completely dry. DO NOT TOUCH HAIR until it’s completely dry (and even then don’t touch much).

If doing all that above, I generally always have awesome hair days! And so can you!

change

Things have changed even around here since the last time I blogged. That’s what life is about, really: change. Without change, you’re stagnate. And who wants to live life like that? Yet it happens all the time.

All the time.

Fear is an ugly creature that prevents many of us from changing.

Fear of the unknown. Fear of the known. Fear of failure. Fear of success. Fear of happiness. Fear of solitude. Fear of being even more motherfucking empty.

As if that’s even possible.

When you get to that empty point… where nothing seems to be going your way and you sincerely wonder why the fuck you’re even still alive… that’s when you need change the most. But it’s probably also when you’re most afraid.

I’ve been there, man. I know.

But that won’t help you and I know that too.

You have to find something. Some.Thing. Anything. Quit thinking about the shit you can’t change. Instead think of the stuff you can change. And do it. Change. Make the change.

It’s worth it.

You’re worth it.

Truly you are.

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Not on the Rag but Still Feeling It

Christina:

incredible!!!
i feel ashamed that the thought of this never even crossed my mind.

Originally posted on Red's Wrap:

Is there possibly a more inelegant phrase than ‘she’s on the rag?’

Maybe. I’ll search for it later.

My mother told me that when she was a teenager growing up in a small town during the Depression, she and her sister actually used rags that were washed and bleached and hung out on the clothesline to dry, each rag hand-fed through a wringer washer. Nothing came easy then.  If you were going to be on the rag, you better learn to wash them. Harsh business.

Being on the rag is not a situation for me anymore. One of the many benefits of getting older is being able to wear white pants anytime, not having to rummage through the drawer for a Tampax like I was looking for the last remaining cigarette on earth, the one that would save me from nicotine withdrawal and wanting to kill all my children…

View original 527 more words

overcoming addiction (or at least trying to)

It’s been about a month or so since being diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes. Once I got past the anger toward myself for letting my body, my system get to the point where I could get diagnosed with diabetes, I started to put that energy into … MYSELF.

The past month has been quite interesting.

It started out so. fucking. hard: Going from consuming literally whatever the hell I wanted, whenever the hell I wanted, to 1200 calories a day was.. fucking hard.

But what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger, eh?

A month later and I’m down 25 pounds. Not bad.

food92614

some of the food i’ve been enjoying

 

I feel really damn good… alive… energized. (I’m even taking about 6K steps a day, hoping to get up to 10K a day.)

I feel like this is it for me.

I feel like I’ve finally come to terms and accepted that yes, I have a problem with food (much like some may have with alcohol or drugs– yes, MUCH LIKE THAT!!) and it’s up to me to change this problem.

I feel like I’ve finally accepted that it’s okay to feel a variety of ways and NOT turn to food. It’s okay. I’ll be okay without that crutch.

It’s only been a month. That’s not too horribly long.

But.

It’s long enough to consider it a giant step toward succeeding.

I simply have no other alternative.