Category Archives: Random thoughts


I am so thankful for my Tivo!  I am rarely home or available to watch my favorite shows when they come on…but my tivo records them for me to watch later.  The other best part is that I don’t have to pay attention when a show comes on–my tivo records it anyway.  Tonight it recorded a cool show I watched over the summer, “Human Target.”  I love action/spy shows–Burn Notice, Covert Affairs, Alias, etc.  And my tivo will record them all for me!  (Okay, not Alias, because that ended…but you get the point 😉  ) I never have to worry about forgetting to set the VCR.

(Yes, I’m tired.  But I do love my tivo, seriously! )

(P.S.  Jillian’s 30 day shred level 1 was pretty good–I sweated a lot and my legs/shoulders burned!  I’ll do it again a few times before moving to level 2.  Wish it were longer though…)

Week 3 of Thanks Begins

To recap:

1) My cat

2) No more election campaigning

3) Being able to afford to buy food

4) Gorgeous fall weather

5) Processed cheese

6) Good friends

7) My strong legs

8) My pumpkin bread recipe

9) Days off

10) Being able to go on cruises (on occasion)

11) Hummus

12) Comp tickets to the Symphony

13) New clothes


I haven’t been thankful for my sweetie Chris yet—and I definitely am!  He puts up with a lot from me (my perfectionist tendencies also carry over into my expectations for him , fair or not Winking smile ) but also gives a lot to me and to our relationship.  He is trustworthy, caring, cute, talented, smart, and hilarious!  I can always count on Chris to make me laugh.  THANKS Chris!!



Just a smattering of Chris pictures.  I was trying to reflect the qualities I listed:  Talented, loving, funny, and basically up for wearing a funny hat, drinking a fruity drink, or dancing…whatever it was that I wanted to do Smile


I bought a carton of delicious black bean hummus at the grocery store the other day.  I put some on my sandwich tonight instead of mayonnaise or mustard and it was DELICIOUS!

I also purchased carrots to dip in it.  I haven’t had black bean hummus before, but this was really tasty!  In fact, I’m still sitting here, an hour later, thinking about how good my sandwich was.  You know what that means:  hummus is on the list!  I am thankful for hummus (in all incarnations, from black bean to regular to spicy to garlic varieties).  I am thankful for whoever invented hummus also!  THANK YOU HUMMUS!  (trying too hard?)

Today was a beautiful sunny day.  I was walking towards my house this afternoon and I just couldn’t resist taking a few pictures of this gorgeous view.


The red color was really popping in the sunlight!

Tuesday night thankfulness

I realized that I hadn’t posted today’s “What I’m thankful for Today” post yet.  (Department of Redundancy Department?)

*ponders day*

I slept in, worked out with Mike (my trainer if you are new), grocery shopped, talked to a friend on the phone, taught ONE student, went to the gym again to run 4 miles, and now I’m winding down.  What am I thankful for?  Days off work!  I’m thankful for relaxing days like today where I have very few commitments on my time.  This sort of day allows me to catch up on errands and emails, relax, shop, unwind, get lots of good exercise, practice, whatever I want.  I’m very thankful for days off!  (My next one isn’t until next Tuesday, so…I’ll be thankful again then but have to come up with something new…)

Morning off

Ah, a well-deserved morning off!  I got to sleep in a bit and have a leisurely breakfast.  I had hot oatmeal and decided to try a container of the Chobani Yogurt people have been raving about.  I had peach flavor…um…it was nothing special.  Sorry!

Tuesdays right now I teach one student.  In January I’ll be teaching at the St Louis School of Music on Tuesdays (or when they need me…).  Unfortunately I don’t know where I’ll move my Tuesday home student to…right now I am only able to teach at home on Monday and Thursday (which two months ago seemed like MORE than enough!).  I can’t believe my home studio is actually officially full.  (I will have a waiting list, for anyone interested.  There is always turnover).  I have picked up about five new students in the past couple of weeks and I am really excited about them.  I also have a new student at the Ballet School, starting tomorrow.  So many people to teach!  It’s wonderful how (from my point of view) private music education is alive, well, and thriving!

What else is going on this week?  Well, I am probably doing another race (5k) on Saturday.  I say probably because I registered, but it might rain, and we’ll have to see how am I feeling about that.  Honestly, I’m sure I’ll run it.  I seem to have the race bug right now, and I think I can beat my last time.  Plus this will be my first alone race, and I want to see how well I can pace myself on my own.  (I am looking at this as a positive thing, as my running is something I do alone, and I want to feel confident enough to do a race alone as well!)

I feel a bit stressed lately…I don’t actually have that much to do, but with the impending holidays, time is running out on concert prep and that sort of thing.  I’ve got about four different performances at my two schools to deal with in addition to my own gigs.  I also get stressed about house cleaning–ideally I’d like to live in a clean house, but have trouble picking up after myself, and I hate dusting…so I just stress about it rather than say, spending a morning off cleaning.  Then I take it out on Chris later 😉  I just need to keep up on my to-do list so I don’t forget things.

Off to the gym!


Pumpkin Bread!

Today I am thankful for my delicious and no-fail pumpkin bread!  I make this bread every year at least once (if not more) once we get into pumpkin season (a.k.a. Autumn).  It is easy to take to potlucks and always turns out really moist, freezes well, and is just basically really good.

I made my famous pumpkin bread yesterday for a baby shower.  I decided to be fancier this year and add chocolate chips.  What a brilliant idea!!  I can’t believe I’ve been making this stuff for years and just now thought of that.

Also healthy! You can see the oats peeking out.
See the chocolate chips? Yum!

Okay, I searched the internet high and low, but could not find a link to the recipe.  It’s your lucky day:  I’m going to type it out.  I’m assuming it came from a Libby’s pumpkin can as Libby’s pumpkin is mentioned in the recipe by name.  My sister Leslie copied it for me (by hand!) several years ago.



Pumpkin Bread:


3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

3/4 cup quick or old-fashioned oats

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

3 eggs

1 3/4 cups Libby’s pumpkin (15 or 16 oz can)

1 1/2 cups sugar

1 1/2 packed brown sugar

1/2 cup water

1/2 cup vegetable oil

1/2 cup evaporated milk

1 cup chopped walnuts (note:  I never use these!  Here’s where I would recommend adding chocolate chips instead!)


(Preheat oven to 350 degrees F)

1.  Combine flour, oats, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice, baking powder, salt in large bowl.

2.  Beat eggs, pumpkin, sugars, water, oil and evaporated milk in large mixer bowl on medium speed until combined.

3.  Beat flour mixture into pumpkin mixture on low speed until blended; stir in nuts (remember, CHOCOLATE chips).

4.  Spoon into 2 greased 9 by 5 inch loaf pans.

5.  Bake in preheated 350 degree F oven for 65 to 70 minutes or until toothpick in center comes out clean.

6.  Cool in pans for 10 minutes, remove to wire racks to cool completely.

* for mini loaves, prepare the same, but use 6 greased 5 5/8 by 3 1/4 inch pans.  Bake at 350 degrees F for 40 to 45 minutes.

I am so thankful for my pumpkin bread recipe!