Category Archives: Ozzie

Thoughts on Thursday

This morning on my way to work, I stopped at Starbucks. My newest obsession there s the Very Berry Hibiscus Refresher. Oh. My. Gosh. It is so yummy and well, refreshing! It’s actually made with Green Coffee Extract, basically taken from a coffee bean while it’s still green, before they are roasted. It has no coffee flavor whatsoever (which I do love), low calories, and NO fat. This drink is perfect for summertime. I even like it better than the Passion Tea Lemonade. One of the things I like the most about it is the whole blackberries they put in it. This drink lasts me a couple hours – as it melts down, I add more ice and it’s still just as yummy. I was enjoying it so much this morning, I had to document it…

071912 sbux refresher


In my email today, I received the first two weeks of workouts for the Best Body Bootcamp 2 that starts on Monday. I am really impressed by all the information and how thorough it is. Well worth the $25 entry fee. I printed out everything, including screenshots of the exercises, and I put it all in a binder. No searching for any of it when I need it, I know right where it is. And because I’m kind if a geek, I out it all in a binder and even made a nifty cover for the front of it. I can’t wait to get started.

071912 bbb binder


After having rain off and on everyday this week, I decided to skip out of work a little bit early so I could get home and walk. I decided to take Blue and Ozzie to the park with me. We made it 2 miles before they were ready to keel over and die, but they had a fun time. They so love the park and there is much excitement when we’re getting ready to go. It seemed to take forever to get out the door, and the 2 miles took a really long time to walk with all the stop and start. But I am positive that I also got an upper body workout at the same time. It can be a bit challenging to walk 2 dogs.

071912 happy ozzie

071912 happy boys

071912 tired boys

071912 walk proof


Since I like to do at least 3 miles, when we got home from the park, I jumped on the treadmill. I was all hot and sweaty and decided to push myself. I did 1 mile on an incline of 10. Holy quads, did I feel that. It was awesome. I was definitely #fitfluential today!

071912 treadmill proof


Hubby is working late tonight so I was on my own for dinner. I decided to cook some lean ground beef, zucchini, and onion. It was very tasty and filling.

071912 dinner


I am so glad tomorrow is Friday. As always, I am so ready for the weekend. I need some down time and I hope to get some more miles in !


Birthday and Father’s Day fun!

Yesterday morning, I gave hubby a bag of Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups (his fave!) and Father’s Day cards from Blue and Ozzie. When I saw these cards, I knew I had to get them. They were PERFECT. Who says father’s of furbabies can’t be honored on Father’s Day?

mikes cards 1

blue card 1      blue card 2

ozzie card 1      ozzie card 2

Then, hubby and I went for a walk at the park with Blue and Ozzie. We love talking the boys to the park. They are so happy and so excited when we go! I couldn’t resist getting a picture of the boys with hubby. He loves his boys!

mike blue ozzie 061712

In my BIG, crazy family, there is something to celebrate just about every month. A tradition was started years ago, as the family grew, that we would get together and celebrate birthday’s, holidays, anniversaries, etc… It works out that almost once a month we get together, sometimes having a dinner for multiple reasons. My hubby’s birthday is on June 22, so every year, we all get together on Father’s Day AND celebrate hubby’s birthday.

Hubby decided he wanted to go to Hooter’s for his birthday. No one in this family ever complains about going to Hooter’s. All jokes aside, we are a Hooters-loving family. Smile

It was really a nice afternoon, with the usual, family craziness. There are a lot of us and we are loud. It always requires planning to eat out. I went to Hooters an hour early just to make sure we could get a table for 18. 18!!!

As always, there was a lot of talking and laughing. I really treasure our family time. The kiddos are adorable and there is silliness and laughter. Pair that with yummy bad-for-you-food and beer, and it’s a GREAT afternoon.

As always, I took way too many photos and Instagram’d the heck out of them. It’s hard to get photos of everyone and everything, but this is a great representation of the fun we had yesterday to celebrate my hubby’s (40th!!) birthday and Father’s Day.

me and my honey 061712           autumn monster

uncle mike autumn 1         silly autumn

autumn and daddy        autumn and cooper

cutie cooper        cutie cole

cooper and grandmommy         uncle toe and autumn

cooper and cheryl        cooper and uncle nick

uncle mike and cooper         joey jenni

me and jenna        chocolate and beer

Sunday in the kitchen

What a weekend this has been! With all the rain we had last week, I took advantage of the sunshine this weekend and got caught up on some work, determined not to start next week any more behind than we had to. Thankfully, hubby was willing and ready to help out, as he always is. We completed a project in Plant City yesterday and then this morning, we drove to Cape Coral and Sarasota for a couple projects. A lot of driving, including heading both south and north on my least favorite bridge, the Sunshine Skyway. It’s a pretty bridge and I always seem to take pictures of it, but it just freaks me out. Here are pictures of it from today…

skyway south 061012

skyway north 1

skyway north 2

When we finally got home just after 1, hubby was working out in the garage for a bit, so I sat outside with Blue and Ozzie, despite the heat. They didn’t seem to care – look how happy they were!

blue ozzie 061012

I skipped yoga in the park with the wonderful ladies of the Tampa Bay Lady Bloggers so I could have an evening at home with hubby and make a yummy dinner. I am bummed that I missed the meet-up, but after the craziness this weekend, I really just wanted to be home before the craziness starts again tomorrow.

For dinner, I made oven fried chicken – a variation of a WW recipe in their Best Darn Food Ever cookbook. Their version calls for buttermilk (reduced fat), but I hate to buy buttermilk for one recipe and not finish it. Plus I am not really a fan of buttermilk. It’s a bit too heavy for me. So, I just use fat free or reduced fat milk. Their version also calls for bone-in chicken breasts, sage, and rosemary. My version is a little different.

Here is what you need for my version:

  • 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 cup Plain Panko breadcrumbs
  • 2 tbsp. Parmesan cheese
  • Paprika
  • Basil

Cover a cookie sheet in foil and spray with non-stick spray (I use butter flavor).

Mix the salt, pepper, breadcrumbs, parmesan cheese, paprika, and basil in a large bowl. On the paprika and basil, I like A LOT. I love the flavors and the more you use, it adds a little color.

chicken dinner 1

chicken dinner 3

chicken dinner 2

Dip the chicken breasts in the milk and coat with the breading mixture, covering both sides thoroughly. Set on cookie sheet.

chicken dinner 4

Bake in oven for approximately 30 minutes. Spray tops of chicken breasts with non-stick spray (butter flavor) and cook another 15 minutes. This will help it brown.

The chicken comes out very tender and juicy, full of flavor. You can serve just about any side with it. Tonight we had baked potatoes and white corn. For the two of us, I make 3 pieces and hubby will take a piece for lunch the next day. It reheats nicely in the microwave.

chicken dinner 5

Thanks for reading!

Sunday in the kitchen {and a doozy of a headache}

This holiday weekend has not been what I had in mind when I looked forward to it all week. Thursday night, I had a sinus headache that thankfully went away on it’s own in a matter of hours. Friday evening, I was hit with another and it was a doozy, right above my right eye. I was in bed by 8pm just so I could be in a dark room with no noise. Saturday morning it was a little better but still there. After I helped hubby’s mom for a bit in the morning and came back home, it hit me again – this time on the left side. I’ve had a lot of headaches in my life and I can honestly say that the one I had yesterday was high on the list of worst headaches I’ve ever had. I could not get comfortable, I alternated between an ice pack on my head and a hot wash cloth. This headache was on the left side and it was throbbing. I actually threw up and that always makes me cry, and then I stood in the shower for 20 minutes with the hottest water possible running over my head. It helped a little but when I got out, I crawled right back in bed. I skipped dinner but was thankful when hubby finally came home from work and insisted I drink an ice cold frappuccino in hopes of the caffeine helping, along with maybe some brain freeze.

I haven’t been able to take any medication since Monday when I went to the eye doctor for the hemorrhage in my right eye. And while I know my body enough to know when a headache is sinus, stress, or whatever, I actually think I had a migraine yesterday. One side of my nose kept opening up which led me to believe it was still sinus-related, but the throbbing and my desire to be in a dark cool room makes me think it was a migraine also.

Today has been better, but I’ve still spent much of it doing nothing and napping. Still unable to take anything until all the blood clears from my eye, I have to rely on taking it easy. It’s not fun but I do NOT want to have another headache like I did yesterday. It. Was. Awful.

So, here is where I’ve spent much of my weekend. Thank goodness we have a super-comfy bed.

bed picasa edit

Despite my headache, I did manage to make brownies and cook dinner today. It wasn’t anything new or terribly exciting, but it was nice to cook dinner for hubby. I think he thinks I’m silly when I take pictures of food all the time, but I just love to take pictures of the food I make.

I made hubby a steak (no picture of that!) and a side of shrimp cooked in Carolina BBQ sauce. If you’ve never done this, it’s super easy, and he loves it.

shrimp 052712

I also had half a loaf of crispy sourdough bread from Publix leftover from Friday, so I sliced it up and toasted it with butter and garlic. Always a yummy addition to any meal.

bread 052712

I made myself my super-easy rice, beef, and diced tomato dish. It sounded good and there are leftovers to have for lunch tomorrow!

rice dish 052712JPG

And because I was feeling down in the dumps when I went to the store this morning, I decided to make brownies. If a girl can’t enjoy a glass of wine or an ice cold beer, then chocolate is the next best thing. They came out sooooo good!

brownies 052712

I was very glad to have hubby home with me today. He was working yesterday and I know he couldn’t be home with me. Blue and Ozzie, being the super smart Aussies they are, knew that I did not feel good yesterday and they were super snuggly. Whether I was laying on the couch or in our room, they were right there with me. Today, hubby has been good company, letting me sleep and relax. He also says my eye looks much better, which makes me happy. I am so ready to be over this.

I hope you are all enjoying the holiday weekend!

Friday Fun

TGIF! Somehow I survived the week. YAY!!!

I was on the road all day and finished earlier than I thought given the distance we had to travel. So to get home around 2 was a real bonus for a Friday afternoon. When I got home, I decided to take Blue and Ozzie to the park. They LOVE the park and they love walks. I was a little concerned about the heat, but figured with the shade in the park they’d be fine. They stopped a few times to take a break so we headed home after about 30 minutes. Total distance walked: 1.37 miles in 42:41. They have to stop and smell and/or pee on everything. They are such boy dogs.

See how happy they are?!

They HAVE to walk right next to each other. I love it.

After I walked them, I decided that I was going to go back out myself and run. I’ve been complaining about the heat and wondering how I’m going to deal with it. I figured today was as good as day as any to get out there and see what happens. Worst case, I’d end up walking. Yea…. That’s exactly what happened. I ran 1:1 for the first 11 minutes and then I walked for much of the rest of the 3.11 mile route. I would run every once in awhile, but it was mostly a walk. It was just too damn hot out there and I wasn’t going to be stupid about it.

Running is not a pretty sport.

Once I realized this was turning into more of a walk than a run, I decided to take advantage of this time and take photos of the pretty sites I saw. I absolutely love our park and it just never gets old. There is always something that catches my eye while I’m there and I have to take a picture of it. Here’s what I liked today:

Pretty trees…

I saw a turtle too!

I ended up running / walking 3.11 miles in 46:51. I guess it’s not terribly bad. See, here’s my proof!


Despite the heat, it really was fun to get out there. I love the sunshine and it felt great on my shoulders. I just have to find a way to run in the heat. This is Florida afterall and it will be hot. Oi.

Have you done anything fun today?

Happiness Is…

I haven’t done a Happiness Is… post in quite sometime. After reading one yesterday, I thought today would be a good day to do it!


Today, Happiness Is…

  • Today is finally THE day for the Mutt Strut and even more exciting is that it’s at the park across the street from our house. It is put on by the Humane Society of Pinellas where we adopted our sweet Ozzie boy from and they always do a great job. The last few years it has been at Honeymoon Island State Park which was always nice, but I love that we can walk to it today AND not pay for parking. It’s sure be a super fun family day!


  • On Monday, one of my fabulous aunts from California is flying in to be here while my mom has surgery and to stay with her. We can’t wait to see her and are so thankful that she is able to come out. I know that if my other aunts could come along, they would too. They will all be here in spirit.


  • Having the whole weekend ahead of me. I have been so busy lately, I don’t know which way is up. There are so many things I want to do, along with the things I need to do. Regardless of what I accomplish, I hope that there is a nap and reading time in there somewhere tomorrow. I love a nice Sunday nap.


  • Having a hubby who gets up early on Saturday morning and goes to get me a yummy soy latte from Starbucks. And he brings it back OCD-compliant as I like to have it.


  • The smell of orange blossoms. I can smell them in our backyard, thanks to our neighbor, and at the park.


  • Having 2 crazy, sweet, adorable dogs. They are a handful and they do drive me crazy at times, but I love them. They are my babies.



What makes you happy?



The wonders of a walk

A walk doesn’t have to be about fitness, or beating a previous time or distance. If doesn’t have to be about rushing to get it done. Sometimes it’s nice to take your time and enjoy the scenery and that’s exactly what I did today.

I got home early and decided it was the perfect time to take Blue and Ozzie to the park after being cooped up all week. I put their leashes on and and off we went, in no hurry to get home. We walked to our beautiful park, Eagle Lake park, which we are so fortunate to have right across the street. We walked the entire length of the park, north to south and back. We stopped to take pictures, even sat down in the grass which Blue and Ozzie loved.

It was a nice way to end the week and I’m so glad we went!

Do we really get to walk the WHOLE park?

So happy to be at the park!

Enjoying a break!

Can we have a treat?!

What a view!

So lucky to live across the street.

Not much of a breeze today, but look at that blue sky.

Yay for walks!

Me and my happy boys!

We love you, mommy!

Aren’t I incredible handsome, mommy?

You know you want to give me a treat!

Love my shoes.

Walking buddies, love to be together.

Wrapping up 2011

It’s hard to believe there are only a few days left in 2011. I remember when I was little and being so sad the day after Christmas, just thinking about how long it was until next Christmas. Time seemed to pass so quickly back then. Now, it seems like I blink and a month has passed.

2011 was a good year, despite the sadness that enveloped our family the end of 2010. Much of our family remained close as each month passed without my dad. My dad was a true family man, loved having everyone together. When he was in the hospital, we pulled together even more, leaning on each other for suppport. Stronger bonds were formed out of heartache. We celebrated holidays together as a family, an important tradition my dad would want us to keep up.

Ozzie joined our family in April. When I saw his picture on the Humane Society Facebook page, I had to go and visit him. Hubby and I had been discussing adding a second dog, a brother for Blue. When I met him, I knew we had to have him. Someone else had already placed a hold on him but for whatever reason, she could not take him right away and of course their goal is to place the pets in their forever homes as quickly as they can. After taking hubby back with me, and Blue, to meet him, we brought him home. He was very shy the day we brought him home and we were still a little unsure of how he would get along with Blue. He has fit into our home so wonderfully, it seems impossible now to imagine him not being there. He is such a handsome boy, my sweet Ozzie. He longs to be loved and is happy just being by our side. Ozzie and Blue are quite the perfect pair, just like brothers.

Two of my fabulous aunts visited for a week in the summer. Time with them is always a treasure. There is much laughter, Scrabble-playing, and enjoying our time together.

 Hubby and I celebrated our 10th anniversary in October. It doesn’t seem possible that we have already been married for 10 years and together for 12. We had a wonderful anniversary dinner. I am so lucky to have my wonderful hubby who loves me so. I love him so very much.

In November, we had our fun trip to California. It was a great time, even with the flying part which I do not like. I fly so rarely that I am just not a good flyer. I hate taking off, literally have to close my eyes and not think about it. It’s silly, but it’s how it is.

And now Christmas has yet again come and gone, and we are looking ahead to 2012. This Sunday we are having a New Years Day family dinner at my brother and sister-in-law’s house. It will be another great family day. I enjoy time spent together, catching up, and time with Autumn and her little laugh that is so contagious. Family, food, and fun – my kind of day.

And the scale says…

I went to WW yesterday, unsure what the scale would say. After being sick and missing the meeting last week, and only walking twice in the past two weeks, I thought it might be up. I was pleasantly surprised to see a 1 lb. loss.

Weight:  154.4 lbs.
Total loss:  11.4 lbs.
I am 0.80 lbs. away from my lowest which was on 06/03/11. I had two gains since then so this loss made me happy. I am still trying to get to my next goal of 16 lbs. total, which will be 10% and almost halfway to my goal of 130 lbs..

I walked this morning at the park with hubby and the dogs. With the heat we’ve had, I have not been walking the dogs like I used to. But there was actually a cool breeze this morning and I thought it would be a great start to the long weekend. We walked 2.16 miles in 59 minutes – very slow but still a great walk. Blue and Ozzie enjoy getting out as much as I do.

My goals for this coming week are:
– keep up with my 64 oz. of water a day, which I have done very well with
– restock the fridge with fresh fruits for 0 point snacks
– make garden vegetable soup for lunches which is very filling
– walk at least 4 days this week

What are your goals?

Monday randomness

I can’t believe I haven’t blogged since last Wednesday. Last week was such a blur, so much going on. This week I hope to not be in such a state of constant running and hoping to be able to stick to my more normal routine. I definitely do better with structure.

My Friday morning weigh-in at WW showed a 1.2 lb. gain. I was not happy about it but there is no one to blame but myself. The scale MUST go in the other direction this week and I know that for the most part, that is up to me. Like I said before, structure.

I did not work out at all last week. My only physical activity was when we took the dogs to the park Saturday morning. It was our first time taking Ozzie and we were pleased to see that he loves the park as much as Blue. And they walked great together. He really fits in nicely and it’s already hard to imagine him not being here. Anyhow, I DID work out today – did my 36 min. TaeBo Cardio Circuit 1 workout. While doing it, I decided that I need a new plan of attack this week. Still wanting to walk 15 miles a week and do TaeBo twice a week, I am going to split it up. I am going to get my walk in in the morning. Whether outside with the pups, on the treadmill, or Leslie Sansone workouts on ExerciseTV – I wll get my walking in. Then in the afternoons, 3 days a week, I will do TaeBo. This will serve a couple purposes…. One, in the morning it will keep my from going back to sleep on the couch after hubby leaves. Ironically, I think this may be making me more tired. And two, it will let me spend more time with the pups in the afternoon and time to do other things that need to be done. Tomorrow will be day 1 of walking in the morning.

I have a new obsession – the Kindle app. Hubby recently got an iPad and in my playing around with it, I decided to give the Kindle app a try again. I used it once on my iPhone and while it was neat, it was just much too small for me. Too small to read on a regular basis. I also love books – real ones. Something about the hardcover and the feel and smell of the paper. And how they look so neat on our fabulous IKEA bookshelf. But a book that I’ve been wanting happened to show up as a FREE download. I love the word FREE. The download was super quick. And I immediately started reading it. Much of my day yesterday was spent on the couch reading Fixing Freddie, a book about a woman and her son and a dog. No shocker that I love books about dogs. Anyone who has the Kindle, I highly recommend that you go on Facebook and “like” the Pixel of Ink page. They have alerts every day for free or discounted e-books. Just what I need, another addiction…. Now if only my hubby would get home with the iPad so I can get back to my book.