Things I’m Loving 8.18.2017

Another edition of Things I’m Loving right now!

I am so happy it’s Friday.  This week has been just weird. Work has been tough – which can be inspiring, but it can also wear me down.  I’m ready for some days off.

Millet Tots


What the fuck is millet? Isn’t that mouse feed? You know the corn cob looking blocks you get for a hamster? Perhaps? BUT, I recently found these millet tots and I love them.  They are like grown up healthy versions of tater tots, I can get down with that.  They come in a few variations – King Soopers/Kroger has them plus all my local health food stores including Whole Foods. I just am digging them in my breakfasts with eggs and some green chili. *drools

Plus Colorado made!

Vega Hydration


Being a Vega fanboy takes a lot of time and energy without any the glory of free items, but I’m still a huge Vega fanboy.  These hydration mixes aren’t new to me, but I find that as it continues to be hot I need the something extra to put electrolytes back in.  I love the to-go packets the most – I can add them to any water bottle and they aren’t too sweet or leave gross after taste in my mouth or Nalgene.  Come in berry and lemon-lime flavors!

Podcast – The Secret to Victory

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To say I’ve been tested at work lately has to be one of the biggest understatements I’ve made this year. It’s part of the reason I love my job – I’m challenged all the time.  It can be hard to deal with misses and failures though, that shit doesn’t fit into my straight A living lifestyle (yes I still grade myself).  I loved hearing how these athletes got through it and ultimately got so much better.  The premiere episode is about Peyton + Eli Manning’s rookie years, pure gold.  Did you know Peyton still holds the record for most interceptions for a rookie? He hopes someone new will break the record for him soon.

Instant Pot + Paleo Cooking with your Instantpot

First things first, I have wanted an Instantpot for over 2 years. I technically have one since my autocanner is an electric pressure cooker, but that’s not really meant for the same kind of cooking the Instantpot is.  What is the Instantpot? It’s an electric pressure cooker – surprise!  I haven’t done any cooking with a pressure cooker – as a kid my grandma had one, but I guess I never paid attention to the foods she’d cook in there.

At any rate.  I finally splurged (aka used an Amazon gift card) and bought this one. I’ve used it every day for the past 10 days. From haricot vertes, spaghetti squash, and chicken tika masala – I have been loving it!  I made green chili in 30 minutes in there on Monday and it was so great. I got this book (I’m dairy free now). The chicken tika masala is the best we’ve ever had.

I’d highly recommend both the pressure cooker and the book!

Well hope everyone had a better week than me.  I’m heads down on a secret project that I can’t wait to share, but I noticed I never blogged about my quilts from the holidays so you’ll see those soon!

Happy Friday!

xxx

gfk

 

 

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What I’m loving right now

Okay, this is me being a big fat copy cat. 😽 I follow a few other blogs that do this feature and I thought I would get in on the fun!

I usually try to shove the things I love down everyone’s throats on Instagram but here is a consolidated version with some extras I probably haven’t shared!

A Court of Thorns and Roses Series

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I seriously cannot get enough of this series. IT IS SO GOOD. Honestly, one of the best series I’ve read in a while. I’m a huge fantasy fan so this meets the mark with Fae Realms, supernatural powers, and conquering your own demons.  The entire series is amazing each book better than the last. At the end of book 2 I got up, walked over to the dude and said ‘THAT BOOK WAS SO GOOD. OH MY GOD, OH MYYYYY GOD” I then proceeded to tell him the plot, but I couldn’t there is just so many backstories, and the book unfolds with them all. It’s just great. This is going down in my hall of fame (my place for books that get read over and over).

GAH I JUST LOVE IT.

Ello Camping Mug

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This is the second year that Target has carried this mug from Ello.  Last year I treated myself to a pink version and use it all the time.  I went back a few weeks after the initial purchase to get another, since I now have reached the stage in my life where I buy multiples of things I love, and they were gone. I was sad, but eagerly awaited this summer season to see if they would return. THEY DID!

Keeps things cold or hot for hours. Plus the handle is made from cork. The top never leaks and I love the camping enamel finish. Got the teal the second time around.

MillaMia Yarn

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Lois introduced my to MillaMia last year (she made those amazing Christmas ornaments for everyone) and then got me a bunch of it to make cowls for shopghostfaceknitter.com. I had a bunch left over from then and am now making the So Faded sweater with the surplus I had. But I LOVE this yarn. I’ve found it on loveknitting.com for $3 a skein and bought a whole bunch more in green, purple, and grey to make another So Faded sweater in the near future.  They have a bunch of free patterns available here. Try not to giggle like an idiot at the baby stuff.

Vintage Pattern FREE-FOR-ALL

I’ve been getting tagged a lot lately (thank you for those who have) in the huge public online release of both vintage knit and sew patterns.  SO AMAZING. Especially considering that people ask for a lot of money for vintage patterns.

South Hampton’s Knitting Reference Library

Free Vintage Knitting

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Vintage Patterns Wikia

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CHIA + FLAX SEEDS!

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The dude brought home this chia + flax seed mix a while ago and I have since re-purchased multiple bags of this. I just love it. It feels like a treat! It’s been a huge staple for me since giving up processed sugar for good plus with the Omega-3s! It’s a great treat.

What are some things that you have been loving?

oooo that smell….

It’s been SO long since I’ve posted about the house.  Things have been moving forward, with the help of friends and family we have been able to get the yard cleaned finally!  One major tree has come down that was super out of control.  3 more will be going soon in the front. Saving majorly for the Bathroom downstairs – that’s what Ghostfaceknitter is for ;).

Oh and in the next few days – BRAND NEW WINDOWS. 🙂

But probably the most time/attention has gone towards a smell.  It started in September, it wasn’t chronic.  But it reeked of rotten something. In October, I realized that it was the ejector pump (sniff sniff sniff -COMING FROM HERE).  The wonderful little gadget that literally purees then shoots any waste from the basement up and out into the sewer.  So so amazing – technology is wonderful.

Let’s revisit what this room looks like:

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notice the white marks on the black pipe to the right of the white shut off valve.

The first plumbing company to come was Lakewood Plumbing.  They came in spent about 5 mins in the room and told me it was due to all the cracks and openings in the ejector pump.  If I caulked those all, the smell would go away.  It seemed to right off, so I was super happy. And best part, they didn’t charge me….

Then, the bathroom sink clogged due to calcium/mineral build up. So I called Lakewood again due to their amazing diagnostic skills, the smell was coming back a little this time they told me to put a sealant over it. ‘That wouldn’t hurt anything’ So I got the sealant, similar to roofing sealant and covered the top like a crazy person.

While I’m on the topic of crazy, this smell literally drove me insane. I could walk in and smell it, I could smell it in my craft room – making it impossible to work/sew and do the things I love to do, that bring me comfort and joy.  So imagine me, crazed painting sealant on an ejector pump sniffing everything inch of the basement to make sure the smell was gone.

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okay i get it this was overboard but they told me this would be totally fine!

It ‘worked’ for about a week.  You see the sealant smell cancelled out the poop smell a bit and things seemed okay.  Then the smell came back. I was hysterical. It smelled like sulfur at this point (again I was driven mad). So having the well that sulfates in it – ‘welp that’s sulfur!’ So I cleaned out my entire water softener.  If you have ever done that.  1) you have to use cups, shovels, cat litter scoops (it was clean 😉 ) to pretty much get all the salt out.  So I did that, cleaned it with bleach (we don’t drink unfiltered water from the sink we have a reverse osmosis system that is 1 million times cleaner than other water sources).  Anyways, the smell went away for a few hours then came back.  I lost my mind and covered the entire softener in garbage bags.

So at this point it was a water issue. The well company wouldn’t help me…. So I called a water softener company, because it was totally my sulfur water. They were awesome. They came out immediately looked at the way the water softener was drained into the ejector pump and said – the smell is coming from there and into the softener it’s not your water.

But alas, he tested my water and guess what?  Extremely hard water is a 10 my water was a 35. That’s right, the water softener I have was only cutting it to the high teens.  That still meant that all of my new appliances and pipes were getting corroded. So I went ahead and bought the water softener that could handle the job. $3k later that was solved.

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our hard waster on the right, the newly treated filtered on the left. JESUS. 

BUT STILL THE SMELL WAS THERE.

I was a broken person when I googled ‘ejector pump specialist’.   Nate from Time plumbing came out and in a matter of minutes (he also popped the ejector pump top no one else did) and saw the smell was not coming from ejector, but noticed some drip build up on a pipe nearby.  He also could not believe that someone would tell me to put that on an ejector pump. He then realized that our main sewer did not have a vent and thus the smell was all coming from that tiny crack!

My tangent about Home Inspectors – they suck.  Hire a trusted, bonded professional in the area you want inspected. If I had had a real plumber out (not just general inspector and sewer dude), they might have caught it and I wouldn’t have been plagued with 3 months of this smell. Same goes for electrical. I think I could have a career in Home Inspection based on my experiences here.

Anyways Nate came and fixed it today.  We have a vent on our main sewer and now the smell is gone. SNIFFS IN WITH MY BRAND NEW NOSE HOLES.

Anyways Denver Metro plumbing recommendation Time Plumbing – ask for Nate. He is great.

And thus the smell saga is over.

 

 

 

The Early Bird….

If any of you have ever traveled with me or lived with me, you’ll know I am a royal crab in the morning when I first wake up. I don’t think I’ve ever been a true morning person.  I think this some deep rooted shit from my childhood, because Lois has ALWAYS been a morning person.  She wakes up at 4am willingly and seizes the day, everyday. I remember as a kid I would cry, scream, and nap all morning because I was sweepy! But, honestly I can’t pretend this was when I was a small kid – all through high school I wasn’t trusted to wake up alone so she would have to call the house to make sure I got my ass up.  Lois also turned to insane tactics to wake me up – my least favorite was her singing Dean Martin’s ‘Volare’ at the top of her lungs.  I still can’t even listen to that song without getting sickening chills down my spin.   In Chicago, I had some progress in getting up, I would start my work shift at 7:30am BUT only so I could leave at 4pm. At my current job we don’t have clockin/out so the motivation to go in early is low since I’ll get stuck there until 5/6 anyways.  Anyways back to the story, I hate waking up early, but over the past year and half I have developed the worst SNOOZE issue.

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you would think a naked cat butt to the face would get me up…

What is a SNOOZE issue?  Well for me it’s acute and it involves hitting the snooze button for up to TWO HOURS…. I know it’s insane.  I have to set my alarm for 5:30am to even dream of getting up at 7:30am…

I had picked up a ‘retro’ (read 1980s) alarm clock a few months ago that was literally just for show over the summer.  It sat right next to my head (like my phone) so whenever my phone alarm sounded I would just naturally hit SNOOZE and go back to ‘sleep’ for the 9 minutes I was allowed.

Well over the weekend I turned 29 and decided I needed to make a few changes to my daily schedule.  SNOOZE issue was top of the list.

So here’s what I did:

I moved that 1980s alarm to the other side of the room on our new dresser.  I set it for a realistic time (6:15am).  Now that’s all good and well, in the past with the my phone I would do the same thing and then still find the time to SNOOZE for hours. So I had to make a promise to myself to not lay back down, not to hit SNOOZE. I literally had to tell myself, SNOOZE does not exist.  I also had to have a ‘chore’ or something I wanted to do in the morning (i.e. harvest tomatoes in the garden, crochet for 30 minutes, journal, answer work emails). Notice I don’t have ‘go for a run’ etc becauce those ‘chores’ although make you feel great are not the motivator for me anymore.  I hate running in the morning and know myself well enough to know I’m not getting up for that shit. SNOOZE.

Now it’s been 5 days of actually waking up on time (6:15am) and I love it! I’ve been able to do a lot of things that I would normally not get to do until later in the day.  I get to show some extra love to the tribe, play in my garden, clean, do laundry, type this blog post, and plan for world domination.  It’s funny how a seemingly small change can have such an impact on your day and attitude. I haven’t felt grouchy, frazzled, or foggy walking into work.  It’s really been enjoyable.

I may not be a morning person, but I’m sure enjoying pretending I am! 🙂

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i have time to make leopold take pictures on the porch
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i have time to take morning light pictures of my pug hair covered crafts.
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i have time to see a raccoon has been in my squash! 
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i have time to harvest some pole beans!

Farm House Update: Week 3

Well, we are 3 weeks underway of getting the farmhouse – livable.

Here are the things we have done:

  1. removed all bathrooms that were not supposed to be there
  2. re-did the main bathroom on the first floor
  3. removed all debris from the yard/house
  4. starting painting
  5. hung window treatments
  6. got all new appliances
  7. installed new well system
  8. installed washer & dryer
  9. repaired all rusted windows
  10. removed paint from all window sills
  11. installed new furnace and water heater

It’s been A LOT of work.  Thankfully, Lois has been a huge help with most of these items – the yard looks 1000% better due to her. On the days we were able to tackle things together it felt like we got a lot more done than I would have ever imagined.  My Pops has been a major help in figuring out what we can/can’t do electrical wise and prepping for Connelly Power Co to jump in on some things.  We still can’t live there until we resolve the electrical issue for the water pump/well system. That is the most frustrating part, since we really can’t live there without water, but everything will be easier to work on, continue to deal with once we live there.  Right now, every moment over there has to be utilized 100% so I think I speak for everyone, but I’m tired.  I love working on the house and it is really rewarding and exciting, but it’s just hard to not have a bathroom to use there, or water to use – and it’s hard to drive back and forth to our apartment in Broomfield (30 minutes away). Eh, but why am I bitching? I fought super hard to do all this – just at a different pace I think, but oh well in a months time or less it won’t feel ‘so close, yet so far’.  Plus, a lot of the things I had planned on spacing out over 2 years will now just be done. So when we do move in we can literally just start enjoying it instead of prolonging some of this fun.

Moving forward I’ll being doing more ‘before and after’ shots on our progress – now that there are some really impressive ‘afters’!

Thanks again, Lois, Pops, Uncle Mark (MD Services – my HVAC/plumbing hero), Aunt Lori, and everyone else in their virtual support so far in helping us get this fixer upper livable!

Here are some photos of the recent happenings:

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Lois cleaned up the front yard and what a difference! So clean and pretty!
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just some of the yard debris we cleaned up – broken glass/car parts?
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it’s the simple things although it is still un-used due to no water at the house. 

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Leopold was in love with the house – and so cute on his house tour.
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A sight for sore eyes – new well jet pump and tank (note no longer in the crawl space under the stairs).
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‘oily beau hunk’ installs my cellular ikea blinds also Sixteen Candles joke. 
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new washer and dryer – thanks pops and cym! 
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window sill- i’m blue da bo dee ba de dow….. 
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look at the sexy new copper plumbing for my washroom…. rawwwr!
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before: yard cage for former tenants that didn’t pay rent…..
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after: bunny coop/chicken larvae den removed. just a nice space for appropriate plants.

 

 

Goals For #MakeFatCryChallenge

Well Day One of the Make Fat Cry 90 Day Challenge is underway and I am still so excited!  I thought it would be great to have some measurable goals to reflect on along the way also.

Goal #1:

Push-ups – you think after all the weight-lifting, cat/pug lifting, and trying to carry ALL my weekly groceries up the 3-4 flights of stairs at once I could do a push-up.  Well I cannot.  I can do a ‘poor man’s’ push-up, on my knees or by not touching my nose all the way, but I can’t seem push myself back up when I lower my body all the way down.  So there’s goal 1.

Goal #2:

My jeans won’t be so tight. Listen the ‘I just washed them so that’s why they must be snug’ excuse has only bought me a few months and I am not buying the next size up, so I’m anxious to see my Levi’s fit with just a little room around the waist.

Goal #3:

Follow the plan!  This one is the most critical and will ensure I even see my other goals, but I’m going to follow this plan down to the last chia seed smoothie and plank exercise. I know if I put the work in, I will see the results I want.

Goal #4

Be nice to myself! I’m not gonna make excuses or miss workouts or eat Whoppers, but I think a huge part of this challenge is being kind of myself also.  I care enough about my health and my body that I am changing my lifestyle to reflect that. Despite what each day may feel like, I can be happy in knowing that I am being kind to me!

Also be sure to check out my partner in crime’s blog over at FranklyTannith!

Yay! Can’t wait to experience these next 90 days!

xx

GFK

Betty Rockers “Make Fat Cry” 90 Day Challenge

In my last post about finding balance, I mentioned that I am doing a 90 day health challenge. Well! The time has come! I am going to participate in Betty Rocker’s “Make Fat Cry” 90 Day Challenge. Other awesome news is that I am getting the support from my best friend Tannith from franklytannith! She did the 30 day challenge and saw such success that we are both motivated to do this longer and more nutrition based endeavor.

For the past few months, my exercise habits included more and more time running, spinning, and cardioing – but I could also feel my jeans get tighter and my eating habits fall back into not so good ones (“I’ll get back on track tomorrow…tomorrow…tomorrow”). I’ve reached a point in my life where I am ready for balance in all things. Thus, this challenge is the perfect way to kickstart this new way of living I’m in pursuit of!

Healthy nutrient-filled foods and appropriate circuit and body weight exercises (max 30 mins) could not be more balanced. If you’re not familiar with Betty Rocker (also named Bree! and she also lives in Denver!) you should definitely check out her blog & instagram to see all the awesome things she is doing in the fitness realm.

I have not been more excited for a ‘radical life change’ since I did the HCG Protocol 2 years ago. I will admit 15 pounds have crept back on over the past six months, but instead of going back to the Protocol as the first reaction, I am doing this challenge. I am ready to get back on track with proper portions and nutrition as well as do daily appropriate workouts. I have to say that nothing is more frustrating than spending hour(s) a day working out only to see absolutely no results physically. I know quite a few people like this and after seeing my New Mexico pics I have become one. Too much exercise + whacky nutrition based on imbalanced nutrient levels = not a body I’m taking care of.

So my friends, for the next 90 days I will be apart of this challenge and I am so excited. I plan on following it to the ‘hemp seed’ (one of the many great nutrient packed ingredients I’ll be eating) so that I can truly see results. I plan on updating at least weekly for the next 12 weeks – you know it will be before and after crazy on here.

I spent a good chunk of change and a good chunk of time today prepping for the first week. Although, I can’t share specific recipes on here (Betty Rocker owns that IP yo!) I will definitely share my progress and my experience along the way.

Here’s some funny time lapse movies getting ready for the week!