Yes, I am celebrating.

Another Christmas is passing. A third without Hubs. A third without Girly. A second without The Boy. “The holidays must be hard.” People say. The obligatory head tilt when someone realizes that I’m one of “them”. The widow.

I didn’t put up a tree. I didn’t hang twinkle-lights. I haven’t listened to Christmas stations. Bah-humbug I can hear you saying.

I’ve sat through the parties. I’ve watched your instagram pictures. I have seen your elf on the shelf. Is this my “new normal” that everyone talked about?

I have not shopped and I have tried to give away the wrapping paper I possess. Dave Ramsey would be proud.

I have received the invitations. The “where are you going for Christmas?” The emphasis on “you” being a little too strong. The emphasis that says, “I know that they are gone. Are you alone? Are you lonely?” I politely shrug my shoulders and say, “I don’t know.” and “Thank you.”

Another Christmas is passing. No, I don’t have Hubs. No, I don’t have Girly and The Boy. No, I don’t have a tree and I am not singing Jingle Bells.


Yes, I am celebrating Jesus’ birth.

The song that continues to resonate in my heart is not one of grief. It’s one of celebration and reverence for the significance of this holiday. The stuff… the loss… it’s there. However, it does not and will not eclipse the glory of the birth of a child who saved us all.

Happy Christmas everyone!

Week 3 Eats!

Eating this week was pretty good. I don’t think there was a day that I didn’t really eat well or skipped a meal! Yay!!

My shopping list was good:

yellow onion, green beans, eggplant, sliced mushrooms, celery, water, yogurt, waffles, grated parmesan, eggs, chunky pasta sauce, butter, spinach, macaroni, pasta, lime, tomato and cheese.

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Overall, I spent $32.25! I used $14 of a visa gift card and the rest in cash. This leaves me with $32 in my envelope for next week. I didn’t actually shop until Tuesday of the week.

From the run-over from last week’s haul, I saved the bananas and made a 3 ingredient banana shake (You can find it HERE!) I also made a Tomato and Lentil soup

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I ate well this week and I have PICTURES!

I made a fantastic Baked Eggplant Parmesan! IMAG0492

I hate green beans. I grew up on canned green beans (which are disgusting) and just gag at the thought of them! I took a chance on some fresh green beans on sale at Sprouts and found a recipe online for Green Bean Fries IMAG0495

Chickpeas, I like more than green beans but I am still hesitant to use them in anything other than a fresh salad. So I wasn’t sure when I tried this Roasted Garlic Parmesan Chickpeas recipe. (sans garlic) IMAG0496 Meh, the jury is still out on that one. They taste like corn nuts. (I hate corn nuts more than green beans.)

Then, I made this Veggie Grilled Cheese Sandwich. Ah-maz-ing! I altered a bit and used a different cheese and non of the wine or vinegar but it was really so good! IMAG0503

I continued having big breakfasts and have done well when it comes to lunch and dinner. IMAG0493Leftovers are much better than they have been in the past and when I ate a fast-food meal this week I was left feeling gross and bloaty. I followed my rules about being quick to use my produce. That’s why I made the eggplant at the beginning of the week.

The new thought that came to me this week as I was making that grilled cheese… every time I tasted one of the veggies (spinach and mushrooms) I nearly danced because it tasted SO good! It was never my goal to “eat clean” but I’m eating cleaner the last three weeks than I have in a really long time! Don’t get me wrong, you can still find me at church with a cookie bigger than my face, but not as much!

Because I officially started the week 4 days into it, I still have a meal to make (that will last a couple of days), a gift card to a restaurant and a free coupon to a local sandwich shop. Yay!

Week 3, you’ve been crushed. Look out Week 4!

Week Two Eats!

Week 2 went SO much better than week 1. I learned from Week 1 that breakfast had to be a relatively big meal, so this week I made sure that ate two fried egg sandwiches or equally filling breakfast.

For Week 2 my grocery list consisted of:

Frozen Waffles
1 Dozen Eggs
Sliced Mushrooms
Broccolli
Apples
Cauliflower
Tortillas
2 loaves of bread
Carrots
Lentils
Canned diced tomatoes
Shredded cheese
Kashi cereal
Bananas
Syrup
Jug of water

I spent $35.37 total for the week and felt incredibly triumphant.1974129_10152778020262985_1512651363233763448_o

My menu this week was pretty simple and I learned a lot more lessons.

Frozen Waffles & Eggs
Kashi Cereal & Yogurt
Tortilla shell pizza

I had a lot more on the menu but didn’t make a lot of it because I had leftovers from my Bible study group (yay!), I was taken to lunch or I had leftovers from the previous week that I had eaten.

More lessons learned this week: 1) If I have recipes that have fresh produce, make those first. (I lost a cauliflower head and a bunch of bananas) 2) If I find recipes online, I need to save them! (I can’t find three of them!)

Week #3 should be really great! Looking forward to it and am glad you’re on the journey with me! Thanks for your support!