Here's to a Creative Life

These are just a few lovely photos of inspiration for February.  If I figure out this blog I will try and put them in the side bar!

 

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Definition: Active Duty Girlfriend – A partner in crime/best friend/lover with an active duty solider (don’t worry reservists I include you too.)

The United States Military, Air Force, Army and Navy.  The power behind them is literally explosive and the punch they pack is second to none in the world.  For most American’s we “Support Our Troops” put a magnet on our car, donate money, or sent care packages.  We know they are now fighting a war along with other nations in the world, even if we don’t exactly know what’s going.  They are in harm’s way, they live on a base and wear uniforms to be spotted out easily when they aren’t training in the woods or desert.  For most American’s this is what we know.  What we don’t know is that only 1% of the U.S. population serves in the military and we may have friends in the military or know someone who knows someone, but for some it is much closer.  For the husbands, wives, children, grandchildren, brothers, sisters, girlfriends and boyfriends in the military it is much more than a few sentences.

I am a girlfriend to a man in the military, active duty.  Before we met I had a little idea what the military did. I knew they fought war, making it sound simple.  I would see the T.V. news about The War on Terror, and the many wars before them.  Shame on me,  I was lucky if I could remember the different wars the U.S. has been in, let alone what time in history.  (Does it make it better that I am at least admitting it,  No?  Okay moving on…) I supported our troops.   I then was caught in a landslide, learning the true meaning of the military, which I am still learning everyday and hope to help those doing the same.

Acronyms, coffee meets, Joe’s, Leather necks, wives.  As a girlfriend I viewed this world as something I was almost above, I was well educated and still thought I could rule the world.  Well, there’s nothing like Uncle Sam to humble you.  In the time I have been here I have been humbled, I have meet people I can only imagine what they have seen, I have seen families broken, and true happiness when your loved one comes home from deployment.  I have been brought to tears, more times than I would like to count.  I will talk more about my specific situation a little later (can’t give all the juicy details!)

It’s easy to isolate yourself in the Military, fortunately for me I won’t do that.  So I will write, about my troubles, my many confusions with the Military, and share my humbling experiences.  If anything I hope for something entertaining to read, maybe a break from wherever you are, or help if you are in the same situation.   This should be fun 🙂

Finally some muffins you can eat, fall in love with and not feel like you have ruined your entire diet!  They are easy to make and friends and co-workers are thrilled to help you stick to your diet when you start bringing these

The delicious final product!

1 ½ cups whole grain flour
1 cup canned pumpkin pie mix
1/3 cup olive oil
1 ¼ cups plus 1 tablespoon sugar separate
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt 
Cinnamon-Sugar Mix
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon sugar separate

 *  For an extra kick of protein throw in ¾ cup of walnuts

Place oven rack in middle position and preheat to 350˚F. Put liners in muffin cups.

Mix together pumpkin, oil, 1 ¼ cup sugar, eggs, pumpkin pie spice, baking soda, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl until smooth, then sift in the whole grain flour. 

In an empty muffin liner combine the 1 tablespoon of sugar and 1 teaspoon of cinnamon.  The muffin liner is much easier to use and can just be thrown away when finished!

Once you are finished mixing fill each liner ¾ full and sprinkle the tops with the cinnamon-sugar mixture.  Bake 20-25 minutes, the tops should be golden brown and raised slightly higher than the rim for the liner.  You can use a tooth pick to check the middle of the muffin as well; when it comes out clean they are ready! 

Cool in the pan for 5 minutes and then transfer to a plate or rack to finish cooling (if you can wait that long).

Healthy Hint #1— I have been known to devour an entire batch myself to avoid this wrap them up with Saran wrap the second they are cooled off.  You will be less likely to eat more if they are already put away. 

Healthy Hint #2 — When I cook these muffins I use all organic products, they are even more yummy!

Tell me how this works for you!

As having my own kids is certainly not in my near future I am blessed with having everyone around me having their own.  I found not only is it great having these friends because they almost are a new kind of birth control for me 😉  but I get to make so much great stuff.  I’m still human, any thing baby sized is basically adorable!  I made this quilt for our friend who had a beautiful baby boy.  It was such a fun quilt to make and actually pretty easy.  I think it turned out great and I hope the family can enjoy their baby and baby quilt!  I read the tutorial on one of my favorite sites to keep up with, Moda Bake Shop.

Have a look see, I would love to know what you think!

 

You know in old movies where people are waiting weeks upon weeks to receive letters in the mail?  Hoping to hear from their husbands, or waiting for all the family gossip.  With e-mail and technology we can know almost instantly who said what to their boss in Germany, or who was caught kissing at the corner coffee shop in California.  I ran across this at a blog that I love keeping up with, Shey b!

A small community of Pen Pals!  I know there are lots of actually websites out there for Pen Pals, but I happen to find hers first and just love the idea!  I still love getting letters in the mail, and it will be nice knowing they won’t all be from the bank!

Click here to learn more and sign up!  Also remember it’s free and a nice (retro) way to meet new people!

I signed up and I hope you do as well!

~Annie

A shot from our trip last year to Garmish

What better thing to do when you live near the Swiss Alps?  Besides drink a lot of beer, and eat cheese fondue…  Ski in the Swiss Alps!  That is the next trip in February!  The group still has a lot of planning to still do, that is if we want a hotel, ski’s, and a mountain to ski on.

We are going with our good friends and hopefully the group will be about 3-4 other couples.  We hope to rent a Chalet and have a blast before our group of friends gets dispersed all over the world 😦

As many of you know skiing isn’t my… given gift.  I have asked Kyle to take me out at least one time before so I can get over my nervous/anxious/blah feeling towards skiing.  All the same what I really want to do is snowshoe!  Unfortunately, to Kyle that is torture.  Luckily for me I think I can get some of the others to steal away a day with me and we will wonder the alps together!  Now that sounds fantastic, right?!

All the same I am excited to relax in a Swiss Chalet with friends and just enjoy the moments 🙂

Any skiing tips from all of you would be mostly appreciated!  I know Jacee (my lovely cousin) has seen the most of my terrible moments while skiing.  She know moguls aren’t my friend!

Until the next post!

~Annie

As everyone has an opinion as to what I should do when Kyle gets deployed and in order for me to really get a firm grasp on what you all think, I would love it if you could take ponder at my new Poll!

Now, if you are going to vote, it would only be fair for you to also comment and elaborate on what you voted for.  I mean we are talking some serious decisions here, so don’t hold back 🙂