Journey With Cookbooks #17

Today’s recipe was a repeat with a twist!

The fried chicken taco, but as…

Only frying the tortilla and using ground beef. I wanted the crispy crunch from the tortilla but I didn’t want to eat something drenched in oil. The husband approved.

We are trying to eat better. I love food, but I am discovering I gain weight easily now as an adult…I miss the younger days…


Again defrosting. It seems to be taking forever.
Also the tortillas…

I forgot I already used up all the tortillas…so I have to section some off so they defrost faster. Now it is definitely a good thing I am frying them or they would be super soggy. 😣

I think, I thought I would be cooking for a billion people…I had a brain fart.
Only about 1/2” of oil.

Normally I would probably add some oil, but instead I just went with what I had. It should be fine.

So I decided to dry and remove as much of the excess oil as possible. Paper towels are awesome!

At this point I decided to add to my cooking preparation. Salsa. Homemade! I found a recipe a while ago and it was a big hit with the hubby and Eli! And me. But no one really cares. Haha 😂

The recipe.
Combine all to bowl. The sweetness used in this recipe is honey. And I didn’t have a jalapeño, and I didn’t have any red pepper flakes…so I just used 1/2 tsp of cayenne pepper.

We have a large food processor; I got it as a Christmas present. But sadly I never want to use it because I would rather not have more dishes. I know that is stupid and lazy, but I am that way occasionally.

The hubby wants 3 and I will have 2.

So for the meat, I will say I did drain off all the excess fat off the meat. I didn’t want any extra calories. So didn’t add the spices and chilies until after.

4 rounds in my mini food processor later…!!
So the extra tortillas, I made as chips. So that when I want a snack I can have some chips and salsa.

The chips are just fried. I didn’t add any salt or lime juice. I wanted them to be a vessel for the salsa.

The garnish.
Eli’s dinner.

I was not about to fight the battle today. If she would eat…she ate some of daddy’s breakfast, all of her own, a big serving of Alfredo noodles, and some cookies today so far.

Back to the cooking. Now I know why to add more oil.

Because after I finished the chips I only had a thin layer of oil covering the bottom of the pot. Not good. Could have burned the pot…

The process of my creation. I thought of it after I made the hubbies plate. Mwahahahaha 😎
A dollop of sour cream.

The thought was…to cover the tortilla with the amount of sour cream you would normally top your taco. But let’s be honest. That dollup is huge…! I used way too much. Did I wipe the excess…no. I did that throughout the recipe but not now. Makes no sense.

Meat layer.
Topped with lettuce and drizzled salsa.

It was delicious. We had planned to eat it flat like that, but as soon as we picked it up, it folded into a taco.

It is not really a recipe I can score. Since it was a mash up of ideas.

But taste…10!!


It’s amazing how much traveling exhausts me. I’ll begin to feel it towards the end of my trip, but it will slam into me when I get home.

This is the reason I have been lazy with posting. I didn’t realize I would be so exhausted. I’m also exhausted due to other factors, but the biggest one…

Eli has been waking up at 4:00am the past two days. 😖 It is miserable. I fell back asleep yesterday around 8:00am and woke up at 10:30am…that was not a smart plan.

So today I just said, “Screw it!” and just decided to wake up. So hopefully this makes her nap today, but also that I will be exhausted enough to go to bed early. My sleeping schedule has been that of a teenager…like 12am-8am. I know it could be manageable, but not so much with a two year old with a current awful sleeping schedule.

But back to the main point. I will stop being lazy and start posting again. And I will begin the next part of my story!! Don’t worry. I won’t make it be like all my other stories that I just end.

Enjoy your Tuesday!

Digital Art
by emily2jane

Pretty much what I look like this morning…🤣

Last Day.

Today is the last day I can spend with my family on our visit. So I am going to enjoy it to the fullest.

Some pictures from our trip…💕

Lots of fresh yummy fruit from grandma’s yard! I ate 12…? the first afternoon I got to my mom’s house…🤣
Elizabeth got to hold a chicken! Haha I don’t know if she liked it or not…
Beach Day!! Eli loved the ocean!!
She kept wanting to go farther and farther!
Day at the zoo!! So many animals!!

Just a few photos of our many great adventures! So enjoy your Friday! Because that is exactly what I will be doing! 😎

Life Of Two Best Friends: High School CHPT 55

Life Of Two Best Friends: High School CHPT 54


There we stood. Jerry, myself, Ken, Matthew, Dad, and Jerry’s mom. We were about to go through security.

I nudged Jerry and gave the signal. ‘We had planned, beforehand, to give Ken and Matthew painful hugs.’ We walked towards them, but they had something else planned. Ken and Matthew surrounded us and gave us a sandwhich hug, with Jerry and I squeezed in the middle.

“You guys done?” I squirmed my head around to get my question out.

Ken and Matthew sighed and let us go. Dad and Jerry’s mom were chuckling off to the side of us.

“We will come up and visit as soon as possible. Probably towards the end of summer,” Matthew swung his arms across our shoulders. Ken gave us a two thumbs up pose.

“Photo! Ken turn towards me,” Dad had busted his phone out. “Good. Good. Now, one..two..three..say cheese!”

Ken seemed to scream “CHEESE” as loud of possible, which caused us three to bust out into laughter.

“I got a good one, and the pretty ugly expression one of the laughter. But we should probably hurry this along. You guys still have to go through security and find your gate,” Dad came towards me arms stretched out.

I accepted the hug. ‘Probably my last hug until he drives the jeep up.’ “Bye Dad.”

“Good bye, Son. Enjoy yourself, but stay focused.” Dad was still hugging me.

“You too. Try and find me a stepmom while I’m away,” I pull away from Dad.

He was chuckling, “I will try, but no promises. Any advice for your old man?”

I step away swining my backpack on, “Maybe…be picky. Choose the right one, whatever that means,” I laugh.

Jerry was getting his hug from his mom. Jerry’s mom was smiling, but I could see the hidden sadness. For a slight moment, I missed my mom; just that feeling… Moment gone.

“Dad,” I hint and nod towards Jerry’s mom.

Dad turns, looks, and then winks at me realizing the situation. Dad gave me one last hug and he walked over to Jerry’s mom.

“You ready to go, Jerry?” As I pick up my carry-on.

“Yeah. Bye Mom,” Jerry scooped up his backpack and grabbed his carry-on from Ken; then headed towards me.

Dad placed his hand on Jerry’s mom’s shoulder; to comfort her but also hold her steady. She was already beginning to sway. “Goodbye, my son. I love you,” Jerry’s mom said, but it only came out as a whisper.

“Love you too, Mom,” Jerry said as he followed my lead; presenting his ID and walking through the first gate towards our future.

I looked back through the glass wall. There stood Jerry’s mom, Ken, Matthew, and…Dad. I am going to miss him. ‘Bye Dad.’ Jerry nudged me to make me move forward. My view of Dad was gone. ‘Move forward, George. Forward.’

Life Of Two Best Friends: High School CHPT 54

Life Of Two Best Friends: High School CHPT 53


We all headed out of those doors for the last time. Jerry and I stopped and looked back once more. ‘Last time.’

Almost like deja vu, I turn around and almost topple over little Lily, “Lily?”

“Uncle George,” Lily jumped for joy, spreading her arms out waiting for her hug.

I accepted. I am happy I did, because it was a hug and kiss on the cheek. ‘I’m going to miss this little one.’

“Don’t forget me, Uncle George,” Lily snuggled back down into my shoulder.

“Not possible. I will miss my little big helper,” setting Lily back down to the ground. “You’ll need to be big and help your Uncle Ken and Uncle Matthew next year. Can you do that?”

“Yes, sir!” Lily did a cute salute and moved to my left and did the same hug and kiss for Jerry.

Looking around, my other teammates were dispersing but there stood Coach, Matthew, Ken, Brit, and Jenny. If you add my dad to the mix, you would get the most important people in my life.

“Well you two better do me proud,” Coach stepped towards us and clapped our shoulders. “I do not expect any calls from Coach Jones, but if I recieve one,” Coach’s face
changed to “the look”, “You better run and hide. Run and hide.”

‘Message received.’ I don’t need Coach coming all the way to Montana to kill me. “Understood!” Jerry and I said together.

“Aside from that, Congratulations and good luck. You will need it,” Coach chuckled as he scooped Lily up. “Let’s head out Lily,” off walked Coach with Lily in his arms.

“See ya later, Coach!” I yelled, and Coach stopped, turned, and nodded in my direction; then he continued to his truck.

‘My last nod.’

“Well dude. Matthew and I will be at the airport to say goodbye, so we are going to head out now. You good?” Ken slapped my back, and he dodged mine instinctively while backing away to the parking lot. Brit followed along behind them.

‘I can’t believe my hand did not connect with his face again.’ “Yeah I’m good. You good?” I turned to Jerry.

“See you in two days,” Jerry yelled, but Matthew and Ken were already halfway across the parking lot. “Let’s head out,” Jerry turned back, heading to my jeep.

But there stood Jenny. Looking over to Jerry, I could tell he understood that she wanted to talk.

“Don’t worry about it George. I’ll go catch up to them. You are going to be stuck with me for two years anyways,” Jerry started walking backwards. “See you, Jenny,” Jerry yelled as he turned and dashed off to catch up to Ken’s ride.

“See you,” Jenny said only loud enough for me to hear, “He is not going to hear me anyways.”

I nodded in agreement. Knowing what was going on, “Ride?”

Jenny nodded and started heading to the jeep.

I seriously did know this route by heart. ‘This is probably the last time I will be driving her home.’ “You know, this is probably the last time I will drive you home.” She didn’t say anything. I kept driving. But a sudden movement caught my eye. Did she wipe away a tear? I pulled over, “Are you okay, Jenny?”

Jenny sniffed and again wiped at her face.

‘She was crying.’

“Yeah I’m good. Just you saying this is the last time hit me that, that is true,” She tried to compose herself and turned to face me. “My best friend is leaving me.”

I honestly have no words. I thought she would be somewhat upset, but I never expected tears. ‘I don’t know what to do when a girl cries, with me in mind.’ “I will be back at some point. Either two or six years.”

“Six years!” Jenny blurted out.

‘Nice dude. You are an idiot.’ I took the time and explained to Jenny about the college in Montana; that they only take a few from the Montana High school. That it is a very pretigious school that takes only the top five from each swim high schools. I probably gave her more information than she needed.

“Okay. I understand, but wow. I didn’t realize you would be gone so long,” Jenny turned her body away and towards the window.

‘There she goes shutting me out again.’ I pull the jeep back onto the road. ‘I don’t understand girls,’ pulling into her driveway. ‘Probably the last time
I’ll pull into this driveway.’
This time, I turned the jeep off and got out with her. “Since its the last time, I’ll take you to the door; I might as well make it one of a kind!”

She giggled.

‘At least she giggled.’ We had reached the door. ‘Should I?’ I turned to her.

Jenny stood awkardly next to me; she was shifting from one foot to another.

‘Screw it.’ I pulled her into my arms and gave her a hug. “I’ll miss you, Jenny.” Her body relaxed into my embrace. ‘Why does she fit perfectly?’ “But don’t worry. I always visit my family.”

Jenny’s body pulled away; she caught my gaze, “You still see me as family?”

“Of course. Just like Dad, Coach, the guys, and Brit. My family,” I released her from my hold. ‘We’ve been like this too long.’ We each step away. Backing up towards the jeep, “See ya, Jenny. I’ll see you again.” I turn and walk. I buckle up, put the jeep in reverse, I start to roll back, and I see Jenny. She was still standing where I left her. I roll down the window and wave.

Jenny nods and waves at me to go first.

‘All good.’ I roll the window up, back up onto the street, and head forward. Jenny’s house disapears from my rear view mirror. This was another strange feeling. Knowing it would
be years until I saw that house again…

Heading home.

Word Of The Day: Harry 06-17-21

Verb. Synonyms: attack, assail, assault, devastate.

Never truly knowing.

Always glancing behind.

Fear constantly growing.

Walking almost blind.

Drenched with tears,

Sending up urgent prayers.

Desperate state of mind.

Constantly searching for peace.

Where will I find?

My much needed release.

Until that day,

Dread and terror,

Will consume me…


That day will come.

Continue. Even if it is hard. Continue.

Digital Art
by emily2jane

Life As A Mama #42

A new adventure with Eli…

Actually the first time she can walk on her own following Daddy.
So big! With her backpack and ponytail!
The river was rushing…
Mama and baby cross the bridge!
(Finally a picture with mama)
My two favorite people!! ❤️
What is this you might ask? A spider nest the size of two hands…
Yeah…nope! I zoomed in to the photo so that you could see…I was not getting closer…
Stop looking! Catch up to the family…!?!
A sleeping baby on the drive home…❤️

Our very first legit hike. Not one where I had to carry her the entire time. Not one where she got angry 10min in…

We did leave after about 20min. Because a storm was coming, and I didn’t want to attempt this hike wet and muddy…with a two year old…

But still it was a fun day. And it was filled with such sweet moments.

God’s beautiful creation!
The scary spider web…

This bush was covered…😳

by emily2jane

Life Of Two Best Friends: High School CHPT 53

Life Of Two Best Friends: High School CHPT 52


Well things have been in a blur. I’ve forgotten to write everything down. Still…it is the last day of school! Finally Jerry and I’s goals will begin. Yep. Jerry is going with me; I super hyped I will have my best bud with me. His parents figured out the finances, and the Montana school helped out as well, but with the knowledge that Jerry will have to maintain a B avergae the next two years.

That day of fun at the pool, Matthew did call and tell Coach Jones he would not be joining, and to give his spot to another. I get it now. ‘I didn’t that day, but I do now.’ Also this way, Matthew and Ken will finish out the last two years of swimming together.

On the other hand, we will be leaving in two days. Dad will be driving my jeep up at some point, so that I have some wheels. I recieved my swimming schedule in the mail yesterday. It pretty much stated that I would not have any days off, except holidays or family engagements. So my dad gifted Jerry travel money. Assuring Jerry’s parents that whenever Jerry was needed home he would have the funds. Dad called it a congratulations gift for achieveing The Montana School. ‘Pretty sweet gift, if I must say.’

Today was a stange day. Classes were…whatever. But the thought of not swimming here or seeing Matthew, Ken, and Coach everyday…strange.

Jerry walked up next to me, “Does it feel weird dude? It’s our last day here for the next two years?”

“I was just thinking that. Also not to see Matthew and Ken everyday…will they make it to school everyday if their chauffer is not around,” I laughed, but actually thought about that.

As if they heard their names, Ken and Matthew sprinted towrds us. “Dude can I borrow your phone. My mom got ahold of the school and wanted to talk to me. My phone is dead,” Ken stretched out his hand pleading. I didn’t hesitate; I gave it.

“Me too. My parents need to talk to me and my phone is also out of batteries. Bro, can I borrow,” Matthew asked Jerry, not as severly as Ken but still somewhat urgent? ‘At least it was urgent for Matthew’s standard.’

“Sure,” Jerry too handed over the phone.

With that Matthew and Ken turned their backs to us and seemed to urgently call their families.

“Let us know if you need anything. We are going to head in,” I said backing away. Their hightened mannerisms made it seem like they were going to be dead meat from
their parents. I tapped Jerry’s shoulder waving to him to follow my lead.

“Yeah, lets us know,” Jerry followed.

Walking throught the doors it hit me again. ‘I won’t be walking through these doors for two years or longer.’ Like normal we proceed to the locker rooms. They were empty. Coach had told us to not change and be out on the deck at four-thirty. So we ditched our bags and head to the deck.

“Woo Hoo! Yeah!” applause, cheering, and whistles eruptted in front of us. There stood the team, Coach, Jenny, and Brit. ‘They were celerbrating us?’

“Wow. I like being appriciated!” Jerry draped his arm over my shoulders, relaxing his body.

Instead I was tense. Being celebrated is good, but not with this team. ‘I’m sure they have something planned.’

As if instantively, the crowd charged us, lifted our bodies, and tossed us into the pool.

‘Knew it.’ Jerry was spitting and sputtering like an idiot. I think he had his mouth wide open when he submerged. “You still happy to be celebrated?” I asked treading water.

“Dude. Ken and Matthew,” Jerry pointed to the deck, “that’s why they needed our phones. Those jerks.”

I busted out laughing, beacuse the look on Jerry’s face should scare the crap out of Matthew and Ken. He was pissed. Probably because he wore his brand new shoes today,
to celebrate himself. Yelling over to Ken and Matthew, “you guys are dead; not because of me,” I assured them with a shake of the head no, but turned and pointed to the fumming Jerry, “he is going to kill you two.” Ken and Matthew turned and hid behind the rest of the team. The others hid them and acted like nothing happened.

‘I’m going to miss this. The team, Coach, the guys…’ I knew what my goal was going to cost me, but the thought of leaving was settling in. Jerry and I finally made our way to the ladder and dredged ourselves out of the pool. I was drenched; Jerry looked all washed up. Jerry had also simmered down now; mostly because Matthew said he would buy him a new pair.

‘Last day.’

Word Of The Day: Virtuoso 06-12-21

Synonyms: genius,expert, master, artist, prodigy…etc.

I am, because I can.

Nothing escapes me.

My inspirations ran,

As vast as the sea.

It spills from my hands,

My soul thriving.

The world demands,

For others to climb;

But only I will be striving.

Nothing defeats.

I conquer.

I create time.


Is not for the elites.

I was trying to think in the mindset of someone who is a master of their craft. It was difficult to put it into a poem that rhymes…

Rereading through my poem I thought of my teenage years…when I swam. People say that you are a master when you have done it for 7 years…I did it for…15 years. But now looking back, I feel like I never reached that level of Master.

I was not a prodigy or a virtuoso…but as an athlete you had to have that mindset. That you were the top; that you were the one to set things in motion.

I miss that feeling…

Digital Art
by emily2jane

I tried to capture that determined feeling in this art. When I look at it it does remind me of that feeling I desperately miss.