Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Show Us Your Books - January

Well, back at the beginning of the year I set myself a challenge to read 12 books this year.  Yeah, pretty low compared to others, but  I fell out of the habit. I rediscovered Goodreads and signed up for the challenge.  Goodreads has been a great help in tracking the books I read.  Hopefully, I will also get some great recommendations based on what I read when my reading list final dwindles down a bit.  To keep track of what I want to read I have been using the library website to keep a running list of things I want to read. The greatest thing with this is it enables me to see what is in at my library, what I can order in from another library, and what books have holds on them. 

Currently, I have been trying to split my reading between one fiction book and one non-fiction book each month.  So without further delay here are the ones that I have read in January:


Slaughterhouse 5 by Kurt Vonnegut Jr.- Never was intrigued about a book that was banned before until I read the synopsis of this one.  It was a little crazy, but I did enjoy it.  It was also a rather quick read.  After reading it, I can understand why people would want to ban the book.  There were some pretty derogatory comments towards things/people.

American Gods by Neil Gaiman-  I discovered this book from a list that stated what book goes with or was based in your state.  I enjoyed the references to landmarks and the culture of Wisconsin that was in the book.  A little weird compared to my normal reading selections.  There is also a series on Starz based on the book.  It takes the strangeness of the book to a new level.  Needless to say, we will not be finishing the TV series.

The Marriage Lie by Kimberly Belle- First book club book of the year.  I enjoyed it. It was an easy suspense read with some fun twists and turns.  I did not think it would end as it did.  Needless to say the whole book club was like "what?!?" related to the ending.


The Sleep Tight Motel by Lisa Unger - Really enjoyed this quick read and did not realize the ending.

The Tangled Wood by Emily Raboteau - Thought the author did a great representation of things that go thru someone's mind and the torture a family vacation can be.


Yes Please by Amy Poehler - Did not finish this one.  It was just not my cup of tea.  If you are an Amy Poehler fan and want to know how she came to be in her career then it may be for you.

Make Your Bed by William H. McRaven -  Make your bed and you have at least one accomplishment for the day.  A nice little motivational book in which the author relates his time in the Marines on how to succeed in your day to day. 

COOKBOOKS  - Why spend money on them if you are unsure if you love enough recipes to justify the purchase, check them out at your local library.

Thug Kitchen: The Official Cookbook: Eat Like You Give A F*ck by Thug Kitchen, LLC.: This cookbook was hilarious plus had some great recipes in it.  If anything check it out for the quirky antidotes.

Cravings by Chrissy Teigen - This cookbook has now given me what will be our go-to tuna casserole.  Delicious.  Forewarning the recipes are to be a little spicy.

A Feast of Ice and Fire: The Official Game of Thrones Companion Cookbook - Now I didn't grab any recipes out of this one.  It was fun to look at and see the recipes that the authors associated with each of the Game of Thrones regions.  Plus, they would have a time period recipe and then the modern take on the recipe (just in case you weren't down for some weirdness on your plate).

CURRENTLY READING:  "The House of Broken Angels" and "Furiously Happy" plus checking out "The Siracha Cookbook"

Well, January turned out to be a great month for reading now to hope that I can carry the momentum throughout the year.

Linking up with Steph and Jana:

Life According to Steph

Monday, February 11, 2019

Whats New with you...Life Lately

January oh January...you started out bringing in a snowstorm to our wonderful state of Wisconsin and left on a very frigid note.  I must say that was very cold-hearted of you. Needless to say that with the cold and snow there really wasn't much excitement to report for the month of January just a lot of hanging in the cozy confines of our home.  Here are some things that did manage to happen:

Busy Bee:  Yoga classes started up for me once again after the December break. Also, the library book club was back as well.  The art and craft classes at the library continued.  Weekends were chill and spent at home.

Watched:   With being snuggled up at home, I finally finished season 7 of American Horror Story and Shameless came back to Showtime.  The hubby and I also decided to binge watch the Ted Bundy series on Netflix. Truly amazed at how one very scary individual can escape numerous times.

Planning:  January saw me planning out my fitness plan for the month/months ahead.  The plan is down on paper and I tried out a new fitness planner.  This was later changed to the new one I started to use in February.  More details on this set up to come.

Eating: Fewer sweets.  Sadly, I know that when I want to be healthy, sweets are the first thing to go.  I was eating them way too much during the month of December, like on the daily. Now we shall just focus on keeping it a weekend thing.

Drinking: Lots of coffee.  It's cold here and I like coffee.  Future plan will be to up the water intake though.  The number of times I have shocked myself is insane.

Loving: all the new stickers that I bought.  I bought a ton of stickers from Happy planner for my planners and journals at the beginning of the year.  Oh, how I love my stickers and oh how I know I will no longer be purchasing more until the current supply is depleted.

And that shall be all for the moment. Now let's hope the groundhog was right and we will see and early winter because right now it sure doesn't feel like it.

Linking up with See You in a Porridge:

Monday, February 4, 2019


After all that has past and the progress that has been made, there is only one thing to do and that is keep moving forward in life.  When there is no forward movement one can become stuck in a stagnant pool of water.  While consistency can be nice, it can also become suffocating.  You turn into a robot that goes thru the motions of the day to day. some individuals are happy there with a sense of this what I do and this is what I become, I myself am not.  I believe in trying to move forward experiencing new things places and learning continue to rush down the river and growing as progress is made.

Right now as we are starting February this post is kind of late.  I generally believe in starting my year and thoughts of going forward in Decemeber...moving with the season rather than the number of the year.  For the purpose of this blog post though I will stick with the year thought and bring to you what I see, plan and hope for in what remains of 2019.

Words are powerful. How they are used and what they mean set a tone. Since my intent for the year is to continue to make progress on myself the word I choose for 2019 will be FORWARD.

When I look to my resolution or what I want to accomplish for the year ahead in my goals and habits it is important that each one of these will contribute to core values.  Core values are the base of what makes a person a person and the directions they take.  Core values are generally: Body (health/fitness), Heart (family), Mind (learning, connections), and Soul (community, work). 

This year I also got this animal spirit tarot deck an decided to pull some cards as to what my year looks like, the things to keep in mind and how things will progress. Here is what was in the cards (I have to say they were very fitting of the mood/theme I wanted this year):

Mood Overview: BEAVER: Hard worker, tireless, family first - appears when the task at hand requires long term steady effort time for some selfless service - When in Balance there will be happy meaningful work

Personal Direction Overview: PEACOCK: Inner Beauty Compassion - assimilate all experiences in life does not harbor resentment conflict or past pain within the psyche. Balance confident and kind

Now moving on to setting the goals to accomplish the overall theme/direction for the yeat. The great thing about goals is you can have as many or few as you would like and they can always be changed as time progresses. My tendency is to set the overall goals or accomplishments I would like to see of myself for the year and then also when a season changes set up bucket list items or a vision of what I would like to see happen during that season. We will leave the whole bucket list items for another future post.

Now let's get into the goals/accomplishments that I set for myself this year and if there has been any progress made to date:

Run a 5k
Try a New Fitness Class - Accomplished: Barre and Pilates Class
Better Self Care
Internal Heath

Financial Stability - Focusing on need versus wants
Pay off Hospital Bill

Read 12 books
Take a class thru the Library

Hide Horicon Rocks
Join Friends of the Library - Accomplished: first meeting was in January
Wisconsin Wilds Blog and Instagram

Redo downstairs bathroom
Finish garden wall area
Organize bedroom closet
Maintain photo projects

FInd Horicon Geocaches
Try 3 new restaurants
Explore a new place

To accomplish some of the goals I will need to develop better habits to achieve these goals.  Since this is getting rather lengthy, I will leave the habit conversation for another post.   WIth all this possibility it looks to be a fun year ahead.  A year of moving forward and enjoying the life that I intend to build for myself.  Thanks for taking the time to read thru my intentions for the year.  Hopefully, this has inspired you to set some goals to achieve for the new year or gave you some great ideas....until next time.

Monday, January 28, 2019

2018 Amazon Top Buys

Ok.  This has been going around YouTube for a little bit now.  Needless to say, when I discovered it on there I got sucked into the black hole of numerous top amazon pick/buy/need videos. I figured why not share my top ten things that I purchased in 2018 from Amazon.

1.   Milk-Bone Pill Pouches: Would not even attempt to give our older dog meds without these.

2.  HP Sprocket Portable Printer: Extremely grateful I purchased this.  I use this every single week to print off pictures to go in my planner.  I am thinking that this will be delightful to have on my future vacations.

3. Weight Lifting Gloves: Lifesaver for my hands since I have been back to lifting in the gym.

4.  Mesh Laundry Bags: And now the lifesaver for my clothing.  No more snagging bra hooks on random things in the washing machine.

5.  Memory Foam Mattress: We made the jump to the "box" mattress bandwagon.  I can say that I am happy with it plus it is a small price compared to a mattress set.

6.   Fitted sheet: Simple, basic, inexpensive, soft, and not stiff

7.  Apple Slicer/Corer : Finally a thinly sliced apple.  Back in fall, our food subscription service had us slicing apples thinly.  This made such a huge difference.

8.   Rubber Door Mat : After my husband bought a vacuuming robot, we were on the hunt for the perfect doormat that the little robot would not get stuck on.  This one was perfect.

9.  Floor Lamp :  Here is where the hunt ended for us to find a perfect light for the living room.  It is much brighter in there now...no more dungeon as we have no overhead lights in our living room

10. Furnace Air Filter : Yeah it is the little things that equal the joys of home ownership, like my ability to get a inexpensive filter for my furnace delivered to my door instead of spending what seems to be endless time standing in the aisle of Menards hoping yours is still in stock and finding it on the shelf.

And there you have it, my top ten Amazon buys from 2018.  Hopefully, something on this list sparked your interest or enlightened you on something you would have never thought to purchase from Amazon.  I am also thinking that going forward I may make this a seasonal post going forward (only with fewer items, 3 or 5) and possibly create a link up.  That way we can all share our great finds.

With that, I bid you goodbye for now until the next post.  May all my fellow Wisconsinites stay warm, cozy and safe during our lovely winter weather.

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Renewing the Passion

Over the last few months, I have been renewing and nurturing some of the passions that were forgotten about when I was stumbling thru my darkness.  This took a lot of courage, as I would have been perfectly content just becoming a hobbit in my own little corner of the world where no one could hurt me.

Love of Learning

It started quite simply on this one.  I just started reading books, both fiction and non-fiction.  This drew me back to the library.  The library was such a forgotten place.  I loved it so.  Where else in the world can you go get lost in something and imagine you are whoever you feel to be at that time.


This one takes a little bit more.  After all, sometimes that bed is nice warm and fuzzy in the mornings.  WIth me the more a place feels like home the easier it is for me to be there.  I learned this thru some transitions I had at work and feeling out of place for a short period.  It started with getting a locker. Now I had a spot and I took this spot and made it awesome.  You know a place that when you get there you smile...filled with fun things you love.  After all that it was easy, start slow, step on the treadmill etc. and then start adding in weights.  I started feeling better and got in my routine.  Then during this learning experience of getting on track, I discovered the sauna.  Oh, how joyous that was.  An extra perk for working out and a part of my day that made me feel delightful and more aligned for the day ahead.


This passion of mine flowed into so many areas of my life.  From creating my organizational system to making sure nothing gets forgotten to creating pieces of art to crafting.   When I was creating things and developing I loved it.  The sense of progress and fun was enlightening yet frustrating at times also. Having the passion to create things is almost an asset as you progress forward.  If you love to create you can create anything you want including your future happy self.

Now my intent is to take the things I learned from renewing these passions to continue to progress forward.

Tuesday, January 1, 2019

What the views look like from where I stand

The initial exploration of the Wisconsin Wilds meadow has been somewhat scary.  The light for the things to grow has abundant.  I have spent months wandering through.  My discoveries have been things that were well established and others that need love, passion and light to grow.

Standing tall...were the people who supported me in my initial journey.  My core beliefs: positivity, stubbornness, nurturing, the quest for knowledge, and my drive to conquer. These were the things to build upon and around.  I explored and planted the seeds for new adventures and cultivated passion long since forgotten things: My The Love of Learning, Health, and Creating.  Each of these brought a long lost sense of joy and wonderment.  All of these to be continued to be nurtured into the future.

It was scary.  My lack of trust and hurt and pain continued to try and pull me backwards.  In each experience, I had to push that away and push further into the light.  I am somewhat of an introvert.  I do enjoy my time alone and am perfectly content there.  After all that I experienced it is harder for me to open myself up to others. It takes longer and a lot of trust.

The time I took though to recultivate who I was, what I loved, and effort to push through has led me to the place I currently stand at now. Now is the time where I will continue to bask in the light that was always there, the strength of the tall trees, nurture the beauty that was neglected and plant new seeds. I am ready to move forward on my journey and explore the possibilities of what lies ahead.

And out of the darkness, I crawl info the light

The hiatus I have been taking from my little section of the interwebs has been far too long.  Once this was a space for me to find joy, connect, and share my life. I have rekindled the fire to take the steps to get back on the path once again.

Life comes with many paths to be taken.  Do you go left, right, forward, or backward? Each one with unknown destinations yet all somewhat scary. At some points, you are walking along what appears to be a beautiful path of everything you could have imagined and then there is a fall, stumble, or slight little trip.

For a nice period of time, the path I was walking along was beautiful, grand, and filled with excitement.  Then it happened.  The crumbling below my feet.  The hard fall into the state of darkness.  All the bumps as I fell hurt and pulled at various portions of my overall being that I could not understand, only then as the bottom approached to be awakened to a state of darkness.  In the darkness, time seems to hang in the air, the emotional pain ceases to exist, and there is a state of contentment almost a deep sleep.  Yet this contentment really is a hallucination.  The pain, emotions, and life continued around me without me even being conscious of the fact.   The darkness in my eyes and mind was peaceful, comforting, and very welcoming.  I settled.  Then proceeded to accept the fate: this dark cave is a welcome home.   One though cannot exist within the darkness forever....life must move forward.  The path I was on had to continue.  As the darkness can be thick, sometimes one needs other humans whose hearts and states of being are still intact to reach out and pull you slowly from the darkness and into the light.

And as I saw the light, there was an understanding that it was needed.  There was much more beyond the cave of the darkness.  I begin to climb.  The climb is not short by any means, as the rediscovery of yourself and who you were begins.  Who you were...who you were is what caused the fall.  One can not look back only progress forward to invent themselves once again.   I stared at the blank walls along the path...they are mine to be filled.  The realization the people who are around you, the helpers.  Always look for the helpers. The helpers by your side stand with you, nurture you progress with you, do not judge, and only aid you as you walk thru the shimmery, hazy light.  I began to feel again.  There are downs as one processes the feelings from the darkness; soon though there is a stability. The canyon walls have been painted with the past hurt. There is also guidance painted on the walls from others on how to progress forward from the crevices of the canyon. I wandered through the crevices of the canyon learning who I can be, who I can become. The haze began to lift as I emerged from the canyon.  Now standing in the sunshine of the openness with much to explore and numerous possibilties ahead of me.

A beautiful meadow of possibilities, paths and places to explore.  The courage has returned and I begin to wander amongst the beauty of the meadow and start to plant my own seeds for my future path.  This meadow of mine shall be called Wisconsin Wilds.

Please wander with me as I experience all it has to offer and the discoveries along the way.