Monthly Archives: August 2010

stuffed peppers

Today I had a craving for stuffed peppers. I went to the grocery store today with my roommate, and while there, I purchased the ingredients to make the stuffed peppers. I tweaked my old recipe somewhat to make it a bit healthier. Here’s the recipe:

Ingredients

1 pound ground turkey (you can use beef, but turkey is healthier)
1/2 cup uncooked long grain white rice (I would have preferred brown rice, but had to use up some white)
1 cup water
6 bell peppers (I used yellow and red, as they were on sale at the market)
2 (8 ounce) cans tomato sauce
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon onion powder (I ended up using some fresh diced onion)
salt and pepper to taste
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
2. Place the rice and water in a saucepan, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and cook 20 minutes. In a skillet over medium heat, cook the beef until evenly browned.
3. Remove and discard the tops, seeds, and membranes of the bell peppers. Arrange peppers in a baking dish with the hollowed sides facing upward. (Slice the bottoms of the peppers if necessary so that they will stand upright.)
4. In a bowl, mix the browned beef, cooked rice, 1 can tomato sauce, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper. Spoon an equal amount of the mixture into each hollowed pepper. Mix the remaining tomato sauce and Italian seasoning in a bowl, and pour over the stuffed peppers.
5. Bake 1 hour in the preheated oven, basting with sauce every 15 minutes, until the peppers are tender.

Let me know how you like it 🙂
Enjoy!

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ukulele? me?

I am on the social committee at my job. Every year, towards the end of August, we have “Beach Bash” day, which is a fundraiser where we have burgers, chips, watermelon, a volleyball contest, and other fun activities, which change each year. This year we are having a hula contest and water balloon contest, along with a fun photo booth, best Hawaiian themed costume, and entertainment.

During our meeting Wednesday afternoon, I had volunteered to help with entertainment for NEXT year, so that I would have time to learn how to play and practice a ukulele. Somehow though, by the end of the meeting, I was given the ukulele and music and am now playing this coming Monday! I was not able to practice Wednesday night or yesterday and had no idea how the songs even went.

Today I met with another coworker and we practiced some of the chords and she sang to me how the songs go. So this weekend, I will be busy learning how to play the ukulele and figuring out how to get over my fear of performing for large crowds. wish me luck! and…if you know where I can get a Hawaiian themed outfit, I would appreciate the info.


Patience

Patient – defined by the Merriam-Webster Dictionary as:
1 : bearing pains or trials calmly or without complaint
2 : manifesting forbearance under provocation or strain
3 : not hasty or impetuous
4 : steadfast despite opposition, difficulty, or adversity
5 a : able or willing to bear

Today, I had to practice the art of being patient. I had a scheduled appointment today at 11:00am. At 12:00, my name was finally called, and I was brought from the waiting room into the initial testing room, where the nurse did her standard tests and jotted down some notes and then walked me to the next room, where I was told the doctor would be right with me. It was nearly 2another hour and 15 minutes before the doctor came to my room, where she then spent 20 minutes with me, completing the exam and noting no changes.

I had thought ahead to bring a book with me to read figuring I might have to wait a short bit, but after awhile, it grew tiring, while my patience level was growing thinner and thinner. But while I was still waiting, I began thinking about God and his patience with us.

1 Timothy 1:16 (New International Version)
16But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his unlimited patience as an example for those who would believe on him and receive eternal life.

God gives each of us free will; He doesn’t force himself upon us. He gives us time to choose Him, and he is always there for us, no matter how much we screw up or if we had turned away from him and them came back.

I was also reminded today that when you are a follower of God, he has some expectations of you:

Colossians 3:12
Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.

While I was reflecting on all of this, that is when the doctor came in, and the rest of my appointment went pretty quickly. At to top it off, I didn’t have to pay a co-pay and had no charges for my medical supplies at the end. I could have let my impatient self take over and put me in a bad mood and ruin the rest of the appointment, but instead, I chose to think about the ways God would have me act and use that time to read and to think about Him, and the rest of the appointment and my day turned out great!

Here’s a couple quotes I like about patience:

Patience and perseverance have a magical effect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish. ~John Quincy Adams

Patience is the companion of wisdom. ~St. Augustine

Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson


5 question Friday

It’s been awhile since I have done a 5QF, so here goes…

1. Do you have any nicknames and if so how did it come about? I have a few nicknames: my sister has been calling me “Cheese” forever…I don’t entirely remember why. I think it had something to do with my lactose intolerance. Back in New York, my nickname was “Archa”, based on my last name. And 2 years ago, when I went to Africa, I was given the nickname “Mapalo”, which means “blessed”.

2. What is your birth order amongst your siblings? I am the oldest. My sister is 2 1/2 years younger.

3. In a movie of your life, who would play your significant other? No one at the moment. There is no significant other.

4. What is currently your favorite song? at church, this song called “Stand” I think…not sure who it’s by. Also the song “Amazed” by Jared Anderson. It was actually my send-off song when I left NY for CA. And finally, “Run” by Leona Lewis.

5. Are you saving your money for anything right now? Big or small purchase? Well, I have a couple of projects in the works that I am saving for/paying on. My biggest purchase would be my diamond ring…it’s made up of 16 diamonds, which I custom designed. I should be done paying for it within the next 2 months. Also saving up for my next tattoo. But mostly, I am trying to get some bills payed off, to cut down on debt.

What about you???


good news/bad news

Well I went to see the spinal orthopedic surgeon yesterday. He reviewed my x-rays and did a quick exam and decided that surgery was not necessary at this point. He did refer me for physical therapy for 4 weeks, so now I am just waiting for the insurance company to approve it so it can get started.

Today I was able to sleep in, which I desperately needed. Then Kristen and I went to get pedicures 1) so I could get out of the house, and 2) because I owed her for her birthday. Look how cute mine turned out:
I decided to go for something different: black with white tips, and a white and silver line design with red stone accents.

When we got home, we brought the mail inside. Kristen informed me that I received a jury summons 😦 I have never received a jury summons, and this was really not the best time for it, since I have been out of work for 2 weeks because of my back. To make it worse, when I opened it, the date it starts is on MY BIRTHDAY 😦 I am hoping that when I call in, that they won’t need me, so that I can enjoy my birthday. At least it’s not for another month.


updates

So yesterday, while spending time with a friend, I was reminded that I have a blog, and that I have been horrible and keeping it updated…so here’s a quick recap:

July 4th is one of my favorite holidays, particularly because I love fireworks so much. It also happens to be my roommate Kristen’s birthday. This year, Kristen wanted to go horseback riding at this trail near our house. There were 4 of us that went. This was only my 2nd time on a horse, so I was a bit nervous. The trail and scenery were amazing and I was reminded of God’s creation all around us. It was so nice and peaceful. I had a few issues with my horse though. His name was Rhino. First, he took off running up a hill which startled me. Then he kept running me into the other horses. Then he almost peed on me. Then poor Rhino got too close to another horse and got kicked in the face. I thought for sure he was gonna buck and I was gonna fall off the back. Thankfully that did not happen. Then, at the end of our ride, he wanted water, which the water bucket was right underneath a tree that had pricker branches, which he kept putting my face into. So then I asked to be helped off of him. They brought a step stool over so I could get off, but when I went to get onto the stool, it tipped over and I totally fell off and landed partly into Rhino and also on the stool. My leg instantly turned black and got quite swollen. The bruising got worse later that night and for the next 2 weeks. My leg/knee still is tender and a bit discolored. Even though there were so many issues with my horse, it was still a fun day. Another friend also had an issue with his horse, so I wasn’t the only one. Later we had a BBQ with a bunch more friends and finished the night off with fireworks.

At the end of July, 8 of us from church went on our annual summer retreat. This year we went to Lake Havasu in Arizona. We rented a house right near the lake. It was such a fun and relaxing weekend away which was so needed. There was no drama this year, which was a plus. Some of the guys went cliff jumping. I chickened out. We met up with 2 other families that were our boat drivers for the weekend. We went for a really fun speedboat ride around the lake, but mostly just relaxed in the water, and a few people went wake boarding.

I also have been working on a couple of special projects. I took 3 of 4 pictures that I had gotten while I was in Egypt and Zambia in to Michaels to get professionally framed. It took a lot of time deciding on the right frames and matting to use to make the pictures pop. I got them back a week later and they look amazing!!! If you ever come by the house, I hope you get a chance to check them out. I also met with a friend who is designing a new tattoo for me. I have had this idea for about 2 1/2 years now, and it’s been cool to see it start coming together. We recently got together to go over my ideas and she is in the process of drawing out some sketches.

Just over a week ago, I really hurt my back. I ended up going to urgent care twice, and then my regular doctor. I was originally told it was muscle spasms and this time they were so bad I had to get a shot at the urgent care, and was prescribed pain killers and muscle relaxers. then, the second time I went back, they gave me additional medication and took an x-ray. At first they said I had a bone spur, but a couple days later, they called back to say I actually had a fracture on my lower spine. I have an appointment to see a specialist this coming Thursday. I’ve been pulled out of work for 2 weeks, and can’t do anything until I meet with the specialist.

To fill the time, I have been reading a lot, watching too much TV, and enjoying the company of some friends that have visited with me during this time. Not to mention, trying to plan a 1920’s themed murder mystery dinner party for my birthday next month. What’s been going on with all of you? Any good book recommendations?