Post Thanksgiving Thoughts (Eating, Shopping, Stretching, Books I’m Reading and More)

I hope everyone had a wonderful, safe Thanksgiving holiday.  Life seemed to charge forward at break-neck speed and suddenly it was Thursday — Thanksgiving. We hadn’t even bought a turkey!!  Since we didn’t have any extended family coming over (and the turkey was frozen solid!!!), we decided to have shrimp and veggies and a pumpkin pie on Thursday. Then we made the full spread on Friday (turkey, sweet potatoes, homemade cranberry sauce and of course dilly bread — a recipe from my great grandmother that my family has made since before I was born).  Yum!

We had so much to be thankful for this year — and I love going around the table and hearing what the kids have to say.  They are growing up so quickly and sure do impress me.

On Saturday, I got up on the early side and made pumpkin muffins. Yum!  (Here’s our pumpkin muffin recipe if you’re interested.)

Then I delved in to my work. I had some posts to write and I also wanted to be on top of school for these next few weeks.  I made a whole bunch of math games for ED and sorted out what we’ll be doing in some of our other subjects. We’re going to do a unit on electronics (Fun!!)… and I have the fuses and wires and things like that all ready to go. Now (since that’s not my background) I just need to read a bit more of the book because I have no doubt that LD will catch on quicker than me and leave me in the dust!!  That reminds me, I also need to find the snap circuits and bring them down for ED to work with. It’s been so long, I bet she’ll enjoy working with those! We’re going to finish up our unit on India (Taj Mahal and then modern India and Gandhi)… and from their we’re going to do a unit on the Civil Rights Movement in the US (since Gandhi had such a profound impact on MLK, Jr. and the movement itself.) I suspect that will be after the holidays, but we’ll see.

Did you all brave the crowds on Black Friday? I didn’t. For one thing, I was cooking much of the day, but for another I’m having balance/dizziness issues again. Loud noises are extremely hard to deal with (all connected to my ear surgery).  :( I need to stay close to home and even so, there have been a number of times I’ve lost my balance and fallen over.   Anyway, we did check out some of the online deals, but didn’t go wild shopping for the kids. We actually have a lot of their gifts already.  Hubby and I had decided we were not going to buy gifts for one another, but that quickly fell by the wayside.  Since I got tendinitis in both Achilles tendons (a side-effect of the strong antibiotic I was on) we had started talking about getting a recumbent stationary bike. Then we saw it on sale… and well, Merry Christmas to us.  I’m really, really out of shape now — especially because I spent three weeks in bed — well, or at least was in bed for 17-20 hours a day.  My muscles have shriveled to nothing and my muscles are very tight.

Speaking of health and all that, I read a really great book that I enjoyed a lot called The Self Health Revolution.  I loved the premise of the book which was your health is in your own hands and you should use common sense.  Can’t deny that, right?  It talks about fake foods, toxins (in our food supply and elsewhere) and the foods and drugs animals (cows, pigs and such) are given… and then talks about the common sense things to do (eat lots of fruits and vegies, water, exercise, etc.).  I wasn’t looking for a diet book or a exercise training book; I just wanted an inspiring book about keeping healthy.  This book struck a chord with me and I’d highly recommend it.

And since I’m talking about books and needing to work on my strength and flexibility again… I hauled out my favorite stretching book… 7 Minutes of Magic and have been stretching before I go to bed. Initially, I borrowed the book from the library but liked it so much that I bought it. The stretching routine actually takes me more like 15 minutes and I’ve had to add in some stretches for my calves, quads and hamstrings, but I like the routine.  I flip through the book as I go from stretch to stretch.  It works better for me than a DVD would.

This fall I have read a LOT of books. (Remember that 17 to 20 hours a day I was spending in bed?!!).

I read and loved Ken Follet’s Fall of Giants. It wasn’t as good as Pillars of the Earth, but I really loved it.  If you like historical fiction though, you just HAVE to read The Bronze Horsemen by Paullina Simons. That’s one of the best books I’ve ever read!!

I’ve also been reading the Gone series.  One day, everyone over the age of 14 disappears and a huge wall appears. Kids have to learn to survive on their own while at the same time developing weird powers.  The series is sort of Lord of the Flies — in how the kids struggle to gain power and deal with one another. It’s certainly action packed… and I’ve been borrowing book after book (in the series) from my library. I guess that says something!

I also read Orange is the New Black. I had heard about it from a friend.  It was pretty good and now I definitely don’t need to see the movie (or is it a TV show)? I also read Dan Brown’s new novel, Inferno, this fall.  His books are definitely action packed… leave you gripping to the edge of your seat type books! I think I mentioned a few weeks ago that I read the Happiness Project. I really loved that! It definitely made more mindful of appreciating my life, my family… and all that.  It’s obviously not for everyone (some people had some pretty negative things to say in their review on Amazon), but I really enjoyed it for what it was. Oh–and one other book that’s worth a mention is The Time Keeper — a book which follows the creator of time, Dor. Dor (Father Time) is forced to hear everyone’s cries, “I don’t have time…”  This was a neat, thought-provoking book!!

I definitely keep my local library busy, don’t I?!! If I had to recommend one to get started — I’d recommend the Bronze Horsemen. (I recommended it to my friend this fall — and she’s now on the third novel in the series!!) But if you don’t want to tackle a long book, then I’d recommend The Time Keeper just since it was so unique, was a quick read and really makes you think about how we all complain about time.

I’d better go!  Enjoy the rest of your holiday weekend! ~Liesl

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