Tag Archives: Challenge

Lesson 1542 -The power of a wave #WaveNH

So you know how I did a “5K -a-day” for a month as challenged by my son Griffin?

I decided that as long as I’m walking I might as well wave to people who drive by. Everyday, there I was in my sunglasses and wide-brim hat waving away. (You may recall that on our New Hampshire Border-to-Border walk, Griffin and I waved to people the entire length of New Hampshire. 

During my 5K challenge, one day I waved to a driver and a few minutes later he turned his car around, pulled up alongside me, and rolled down the passenger window so he could talk to me.

“Hey,” he said leaning over so I could hear him. “I just wanted you to know that I was in a bad mood and then I saw you wave at me and that made my day. Thanks.”

Incredible. It’s absolutely incredible that a small action like a wave can make such a big difference in someone’s attitude.

We must never, ever forget how powerful and uplifting it is to simply be nice to one another.

#WaveNH

 

***

Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com

Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.

Like what you read here? Consider subscribing to this blog so that you’ll never miss a post. And feel free to share with those who may need a little chicken love.

2 Comments

Filed under Inspiration, Personal, Points to ponder, The Family

Lesson 1540 – Results from the best motivation out there (I’m not kidding)

Final results of my 5K-a-day for 30 days challenge.

ACLU – $30
Trump Re-election Campaign – $0
(fin.)

(Want to know what this is about? Click here.)

 

***

Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com

Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.

Like what you read here? Consider subscribing to this blog so that you’ll never miss a post. And feel free to share with those who may need a little chicken love.

Leave a comment

Filed under Inspiration, Personal, Points to ponder, The Family

Lesson 1539 – The best motivation out there (I’m not kidding)

My son heard a story on NPR about how using a negative “reward” is more effective at motivating behavior than a positive one.

“What do you mean?” I asked.

He proceeded to tell me that while a positive reward (I get an ice cream cone every time I do …) helps to motivate people, it’s having a negative consequence that really makes a difference and which actually  makes people do the task. This is how it works.

Step 1:

Choose a task that you want to do every day for the next 30 days, i.e., stop snacking, stop drinking alcohol, or even getting out and exercising every day. In my case it’s going for a 3+ mile loop around our neighborhood.

Step 2:

Choose an organization that you would *NEVER* give money to. (I looked for a “New Hampshire adorable puppy, kitten, and baby raccoon kill center” but apparently we don’t have any of those up here, so I chose the next best thing.)

Step 3:

For the next 30 days, every time you complete the task, reward yourself with a dollar.

If you don’t do the task on one day (it’s hot, it’s raining, I’m too tired) then all of the money collected to that date gets donated to the organization you chose.

The next day you start over at $1.

Step 4:

At the end of 30 days you either have $30 to spend on anything you’d like or (as it is in my case) you will have contributed to Trump’s re-election campaign.

We’re having a wet summer. I’ve walked in pouring rain, I’ve walked under stormy clouds. I’ve walked when my legs are sore from a weekend hiking. I’ve walked late at night.

But I’ve walked Every.Single. Day. since we started this challenge.

Because there’s just no way in hell, that man’s campaign is going to get a cent of my money.

I guess this method really is motivational.

 

Wendy – $15

Trump’s re-election campaign – $0

 

***

Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com

Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.

Like what you read here? Consider subscribing to this blog so that you’ll never miss a post. And feel free to share with those who may need a little chicken love.

5 Comments

Filed under Inspiration, Personal, Points to ponder, The Family

A bit of advice for anyone considering a tattoo

A bit of advice for all cool people out there considering tattoos.

I have a total of 4 tattoos. It’s not a big deal after you break down and get your first, I mean where’s the objection? I’m morally opposed to them? I think not.

This past winter after struggling with a surgery that had gone bad and spending too much time doing far too little, I decided to get a small tattoo on my back of my wrist to remind me of three character attributes I should always be aware of, Gratitude, Faith, and Grace.

My plan was when the pain returned (as it seems to a lot even today) when the walking got tough, I could look at my tattoo and remember that things could always be worse, I must be grateful for what I have. The tattoo would be in a spot where I could see it when I type, reminding me that (worst case scenario) even without legs, I would be able to have a job and write. Every day I don’t reach the bottom is nothing but gravy.

I got the initials “ GFG” inked into my skin forever. Continue reading

4 Comments

Filed under Challenges, Personal, The Family

One hour or die – exercising 1 hour a day as recommended by the AMA – final update

It’s been almost two months now since I started moderately exercising every day. My son Griffin (who joined me halfway through) and I have learned a few things along the way:

  • It’s never the boyfriend who commits the murder – that’s too obvious
  • Those water bottle flavor packs that clearly dissolve keeping people from knowing you are cheating by drinking something sweetened are the bomb
  • While Griffin can work up a sweat that can bleed down to his belly button, my sweat stays as a sopping yoke around my chest stopped by my bra line. Yet one more difference between the boys and girls.

This past week I also read the book Younger Next Year for Women – Chris Crowley and Henry S. Lodge M.D. It was recommended to me by one of my Facebook friends. Finally, there is a document that gave me true and reasonable reasons to exercise (Basically exercise sets up “good” inflammation with then triggers repair of tissue which turns back the clock on your body.) It’s a fascinating and entertaining read that will get you up out of your seat by the end of the first few chapters.

I started exercising an hour a day because I was challenging the American Medical Association, I’ll continue because of that book. Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under Challenges, One hour or die, Personal, Uncategorized

Little Chicken Book – update – the structure is there

Along with the one hour of exercise a day or die challenge for the month of May, I’m also getting off my butt and finalizing my chicken stories manuscript. (And no, just for your information I’m not going anywhere near a title that involves any combination of Chicken and Soup.)

Thanks to the years of being a technical writer at Digital Equipment Corp, if there’s one thing I know how to do, it’s to organize a chapter book. (I also know how to document System Error messages until my brain falls out but that’s a different story).

For those of you who may be trying to write your own books and hoping to get some guideline (or at the very least motivation), these are the steps I have taken so far. Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Challenges, Uncategorized

Portion Plates Experiment – the first day

Oh there was excitement in our household last night!

The girls, in anticipation of eating off the Portion Plates set the table with placemats and the plates well before the dinner was ready. They made a salad, got the carrots ready and then steamed the broccoli.

On deck for the main course was Griffin’s Great sandwich (sausage, red and orange peppers, and some melted cheddar cheese). Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under Portion Plates experiment, Product Review

Project Chickens before the Eggs – Lesson 25 – A pillar of strength

We had our first visit to the Chick ICU (CHICU) this weekend.

It seems that one of our little chicks, Simon of the Appenzeller Spitzhauben Simon-and-Garfunkel pair got herself into a bit of trouble this weekend.

For those of you who can’t stand suspense, no she did not become anyone’s SUNDAY DINNER!

Continue reading

4 Comments

Filed under Project Chickens before the Eggs

Project Chickens before the Eggs – Lesson 3 – Housing is not cheap

After hemming and hawing about what constitutes a proper chicken coop and what we could provide for our chickens, we have finally come to the decision to buy one.

We didn’t arrive at this decision easily, after all we had books with pictures of chicken coops make out of hay (“egg-gloos”) made out of the cabs from trucks and even one that used a covered wagon as a chicken coop, the ideas were virtually limitless.

We even looked at metal sheds and dog kennels but nothing seemed to be able to keep our chickens safe. Besides even if we bought a shed, we’d still have to create an enclosed pen. No matter how you look at it, giving the chickens a home was not going to be cheap.

I suppose if we had a farm with a lot of land we could have gotten away with using a discarded refrigerator as a hen house but again, as we have neighbors and the value of a house to consider (although I’m not sure that even the best build coop increases the value of a house but I’m reasonably sure that it doesn’t decrease the value like a truck cab come hen house might) we decided to contact someone who knew more about this than us.

Enter Tom Quigley, a Boston Firefighter living in our town. We met with him in between shifts to look at the hen house in his backyard. Tom, who has built houses, takes care in his creations, the house has a completely enclosed penned in yard attached, an over hang to protect the chickens during rain and nest boxes inside an enclosed area. There is access to the nest boxes from the rear by way of a hinged door.

Tom makes his hen houses sturdy and tall enough that he can get inside to clean out the coop. If he can get inside of one then surely my sons will be able to (an added bonus).

The house is compact and yet gives the chickens enough room to live happily together. (For some reason, the chicken’s happiness is starting to be very important to me).

The cost of the hen house we want will run about 500 dollars. Tom buys the supplies and brings them over to our house to build it. The entire thing takes about a day.

If you had ever told me I’d be spending 500 dollars on a house for a bunch of birds I would have said you were nuts. It’s a lot of money making these eggs quite possible the most expensive eggs in all of New Hampshire.

Our house will be a slightly smaller version of this hen house

Our house will be a slightly smaller version of this hen house

But on the other hand, with this hen house, we are looking at keeping chickens for a long time. And perhaps after having a decade of eggs, the cost might finally even out.

2 Comments

Filed under Project Chickens before the Eggs

The 2009 Fabulous Food Network Magazine Challenge – Recipe 18 –Tangy Barbecue Chicken

The 2009 Fabulous Food Network Magazine Challenge
Recipe 18 – Tangy Barbecue Chicken
Page 121
18 down 49 recipes to go

As a way to provide summertime entertainment (let’s face it in this economy, we’re not going on a vacation this year) and still provide the kids with a learning experience, we’ve decided to recreate each of the 67 recipes found in the June/July issue of Food Network magazine. I’m thinking of this as teaching the kids to eat outside of the box.

Food Network Magazine June/July Issue

Food Network Magazine June/July Issue

We’ll make the recipes taking notes on ease or difficulty. We’ll also comment on the taste and will take photos of each recipe to see if our final product looks anything remotely like the ones in the magazine. So go ahead, grab a Pineapple-orange Mimosa (page 130) and join us this summer.

*************************************

If you’ve been following some of our family’s other challenges, you know that we recently obtained 8 young chicks to raise into hens so that we can collect eggs. We have no intention of eating our chicks.

And so being so close to the kids thinking of our chicks as pets, I’ve got to say that we’ve not too enamored of eating chicken these days.

But in the spirit of participating in our Fabulous Food Network Challenge, the kids stepped up to the plate and tried the Tangy Barbecue Chicken.

Although the recipe said to use Chicken breasts, we used drumsticks. The sauce takes about 30 minutes on the stove to prepare and consists of ketchup, cider vinegar, molasses, brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, and salt. It creates a thin sauce that at first we didn’t think would even stay on the chicken.

But it’s deceiving. Once brushed on the chicken, the sauce created a dark red coating. The chicken was tasty and appealing looking exactly like you would think barbeque chicken should look.

Lovely Tangy Barbeque Chicken

Lovely Tangy Barbeque Chicken

We enjoyed this recipe but as our chicks mature into hens, I’m thinking that chicken as a part of our menu is going to become less frequent.

Leave a comment

Filed under The 2009 Fabulous Food Network Magazine Challenge