An Argument

Have you heard the new Fleet Foxes album, Helplessness Blues? It is really amazing, if you like that kind of music. I was listening to it for the first time this morning and the song “The Shrine/An Argument” came on and I was mesmerized. Towards the end, there is this really unexpected saxophone part that I can only describe as a Latino Elephant couple’s marriage counseling session being presided over by a bee. At least that’s what I saw in my head. Here’s the official video – the part I mentioned starts at 6:40:

 

A lot of people I know hate music that deviates from the norm like this. I think it’s great. I think art becomes its most relevant when it is unexpected and messy, because then it becomes an accurate portrayal of life. Don’t go tell your friends that Heavy Evan endorses those artists that smear their own poop on canvases (although that is technically art)! I am simply saying that perfection in art is dishonest.

What does this have to do with Healthy Living? I’ll tell you! If perfection in art is dishonest to life then isn’t expecting life to be perfect also dishonest?

I need a minute to digest that question.

So, why are all our perceptions of ourselves based on the deception of perfection?

We base beauty on pictures that were digitally perfected.

We base our musical talent on music that was digitally perfected (see every singer on Glee).

We (Me) base our diets and levels of physicality on examples that the industry tells us is perfect.

“The Industry”. How Orwellian.

I cannot go from zero to Lance Armstrong in three months! There has to be a beginning period where I figure out how I am going to eat healthy and how I can phase out the crap I eat on a regular basis. That way I truly develop a want for healthy foods and don’t crave the crap. I think that’s why they call it crash dieting – if you think the fastest way to London is by driving on the other side of the road odds are you will crash!

I guess I am trying to say that if you base your expectations on perfection you will constantly be at odds with yourself. Like the two headed dragon in the Fleet Foxes video. Your body can’t meet triathlon athlete expectations in a retired professional bowler’s reality. You have to start slow.

This is why I am in a perpetual state of starting. This is also why I constantly give up.

From now on my expectation will be that I can do the best that I can and that is enough.

What are your expectations?

P.S. No offense, retired professional bowlers. I do admire your profession. I was simply looking for the antithesis of a triathlon athlete.

 

 

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Empty Bowls

I decided that I would take a shower last night; instead of my usual in the morning fifteen minutes before I have to leave for work spritz. Reason being…

Waffles!

Whole wheat waffles to be exact. The extra time allowed Nikki to get the hour long shower she enjoys, while allowing for time to make a delicious breakfast. And, I got to sleep all that time. Here’s a quick shot of the recipe:

We’ve changed a few things to make them a little healthier – we used whole wheat flour and Nikki tells me that she uses less sugar.

How beautiful are whipped egg whites? Something about them makes me want to dip my hand in and make a fake beard.

For lunch today, I was able to take part in a very cool charity function that we have in town:

Empty Bowls.

It is a really cool fundraiser where you pay a $15 donation, go into a beautiful Fellowship Hall in the OU Methodist church, pick a bowl and then pick a soup that was donated by local restauranteurs. Here is a shot of the different soups that were provided:

I decided to try to eat like a vegetarian for once so I picked the Sweet Potato Soup from Boure.

The very nice lady in a power pantsuit kept heaping soup into my bowl to an almost obscene level. I felt bad that I couldn’t finish eating my soup at an event called Empty Bowls! I felt like a gluttonous member of the bourgeoisie. The soup was very creamy and very spicy. I wish I knew more about what was in it, but I did not want to be that guy at the charity event. There was a sign on the marmite (look it up, I did!) that said “gluten free” which is a buzz phrase and that made me feel trendy.

Of course, it could be that I picked the largest bowl (that also had a handle) on the table.

Oh, I forgot to tell you the best part! The bowls are all made by local artists (some University students) and you get to keep them! That bowl is worth $15 at least.

I just realized that all of the information I just shared with you was on the poster that I posted earlier in this post.

I think I have become redundant.

 

Omelette You Finish

This morning I decided to hurriedly make myself an omelette. I didn’t have time (such a tired excuse) to cook up any vegetables to add to the omelette, so I just used cheese. During the course of eating the omelette I thought “this is good, but I have tasted better”. Then, my rapier wit kicked in and I said “Omelette you finish, but my mom made the best omelette-OF ALL TIME!” What an astute and brilliantly witty observation. I was aghast to find out, when I googled the phrase, that someone had already used it. It appeared in the video below for a Youtube series called “My Drunk Kitchen”.

Please do not watch this video if you do not appreciate the antics of drunk people, or disapprove of salty language. 

Well, it appears that I am not the originator of all witty phrases. I suppose Solomon was write when he said that there is nothing new under the sun.

Last night was the second meeting of what I’m calling “The Refined Gentleman’s Club” and the beginning of my love affair with an establishment called Smoothie King. I do not know why I haven’t been there before, but I am sure to darken their doors again! I got a Green Tea Tango smoothie, minus the Turbinado and plus some strawberry.  Sadly, it did not fill me up and we wound up wandering over to Chick-fil-a to continue our conversation whilst eating fried things. I must say that I am very encouraged by these meetings and hope that we can keep it up. It is really helpful for me to meet with guys that have similar lives to my own, and hash out our problems. Basically free therapy, if you don’t count the extra calories.

My blogging friend Tina is starting a Boot Camp that looks to be very promising. Nikki and I are talking about registering together, and I suggest you follow the link and check it out! It will be eight weeks of the three e’s: exercise, encouragement and e-giveaways! That may not make sense, but neither do the three r’s when you think about it.

Lastly, I just overheard one coworker ask another coworker if they could “get their John Henry on something”. I expected that person to immediately take a sledgehammer and try to drive that piece of paper into the ground, but she just signed it.

I’m a very literal person.

 

 

Sour Cream Smiles

Sometimes my job gets a little blurry; meaning that my eyes are crossed and I have been sitting in one spot, staring at paperwork and computer screens for too long. So, I take little breaks and walk around the office, doodle on paper, and sometimes doodle on my own finger! I did this so that every time I looked down I would see a smiley face and remember how happy I am to even have a job. What little things do you do to get through the day?

Lots of fun was had this weekend. We went over to my brother’s house on Saturday and watched Moneyball and ate these nachos that my sister in law made:

Mine look a little messy, from the sour cream, but there is a lot of goodness here: blue corn chips, corn, kidney and black beans, refried beans and cheese. Thank you, Nikki, for being my Vanna White for this picture. The movie and food were great.

We finished one movie, then headed over to the theater to see The Descendants. I am still trying to figure out the overall underlying metaphor, but I would definitely recommend this movie to those who like more independent fare. One word of caution: the language is pretty bad at times.

At one point during the day my brother and I had a conversation about eating habits. We talked about how we try to remain strict during the week and prefer a more lax diet on the weekends. I have found that this is not a structure that works for me, per se. For one, I found out on Monday that I had again gained three pounds last week! I made a joke earlier in the week that my pants were becoming loose, and I was worried because I can’t afford to buy new pants, so I think I am just going to gain all my weight back. I didn’t mean it Lord! I have learned my lesson about having a lax attitude. It is especially bad when things like the Super Bowl are going on and all I want to do is eat nachos and pizza rolls and cookie cakes (Williams family tradition).

Now I guess you know why I was out sick from work yesterday, I had a food hangover! Random question: what are your sick day rituals? Since we have all seven seasons, I usually watch Gilmore Girls all day. You can make fun of me all you want, but this is one of my favorite tv shows of all time! It was well written, hilarious and it always makes me feel better while I am sickly. A bonus is the fact that I have seen all of the episodes so many times that I don’t worry if I fall asleep.

I told you all of this to say that I am going to try to get more systematic about my diet. I found that, if I want to lose weight, I need to eat around 2400 calories a day. There is also a guide in the Working Out Sucks book that helps you figure out what the percentages of carbohydrates, proteins and healthy fats you need to eat a day. I am going to use all of these resources to come up with a firm plan for my daily eating. Once I have this in place, I will share it with you guys.

I think that I have also found my first 5k of the year: The Racing for Paws 5k at the Batesville Springfest. It is on Saturday, May 19th. I am hoping that that will give me enough time to train. I am really hoping that by this race, I can jog the full 5k without walking. I’ll keep you posted as to how that goal is shaping up.

Kobayashi!!

I mentioned Takeru Kobayashi yesterday, so I thought I would share a video with you that shows the sheer awesomeness that is Kobayashi! This is also in case some of you didn’t know who he was:

Unfortunately he didn’t win that battle, but come on! Who could actually win an eating competition against a giant bear? Well, some commenter on the video appears to think that Kobayashi won the rehearsal, but we will never know for sure. Competitive eating looks like a fun job, but I imagine it has a shelf life. I can’t imagine seeing a 62 year old Kobayashi taking a van with his name emblazoned on the side to all the county fairs (do they have those in Japan) and setting up shop next to the funnel cakes or fried octopus on a stick stands and yelling at the passersby “Wanna watch me eat 30 hot dogs in a minute?!” Then his teeth fall out halfway through and he just slumps down while all the little kids laugh and point.

And, for no other reason but sheer fun, here is a video that inspires me to goofily dance every time I hear this song. Quick fun fact: I actually had an idea for an exercise video where all you did was play popular songs and everyone danced around spastically. I do it often and it always gets my heart going, why couldn’t it be a workout?

Next time you don’t feel like exercising, put on a silly song from your favorite era (eighties for me) and dance about flailing your limbs wildly!

When your spouse looks at you crazy, just tell them Heavy Evan told you to.

Why Not?

On Monday, Nikki and I met my mother on the Square for dinner. Nikki really wanted to go to South Depot, which is a local place akin to Moe’s or Chipotle. We all decided to get a Burrito Bowl, which is your choice of toppings in a salad bowl. View my concoction below:

The contents: rice, black beans, grilled chicken, spinach, cheese and corn salsa. It was ridiculously yummy, though the spinach just kind of wilted and clung to everything else. I picked it because I had not eaten a leafy green that day and you know what they say “Leafy green a day, something something…just eat it, it’s good for you”. Nikki had them top hers from queso and I had to bite my cheek to keep from doing that myself.

Last night I met with some other guys from my Sunday School class at Handy Andy. We decided that it was high time that the husbands had a regular meeting together for some guy time and accountability. I am very excited about doing this. So excited in fact, that I queried the group as to possibly naming ourselves. My pick was the “Refined Gentleman’s Club” because in my mind our meetings look like this:

Someone countered me with “Don’t you mean Refined Gentlemen’s Club” to which I responded “That sounds too much like a strip joint.” I tried to sell my name by giving it a double meaning: “Because we’re refined, but we are also in the process of refining our lives and marriages and what have you.” Needless to say, we still don’t have a name.

Yesterday Tina posted a blog about her “Why”, as in why she decides to live a healthy life. I have touched on my “why”s as before, and a lot of them match up with hers: for my family, to respect the temple of the Holy Spirit, and so on. The more I thought about her post, I tried to think of what would be the opposite of your “Why”. I thought “In my short season of trying to live healthier, what is the phrase that could encapsulate my dietary transgressions?”

The answer is simple when you think about it.

“Why not?”

“Evan, do you want your own pint of ice cream?”

“Why not?”

“Evan, do you want chocolate sauce to dip your vegetables in?”

“Why not?”

“Evan, they have a challenge at this restaurant where if you eat a 20 lb hamburger and 5 lbs of fries in 30 minutes you get it for free! You want to try it?”

“Free food? Heck yes! Why not?” Oh, wait I know, because right now I can choose not to eat that burger and live through the night! And that didn’t cost me anything either! You know why they have those challenges? It is so they can charge you $50 when you don’t finish in the allotted time limit! Face it, unless you are Kobayashi you are not going to finish that burger.

To give you a recent “for instance”, after I achieved my goal of not drinking sodas from Thanksgiving to New Years I toasted with a Coke. Then that little voice crept up and said “Evan, don’t you need a coke to get you through the day?” “Why not?” Now, I am back on my coke a day habit and am struggling to quit.

Why not? is a dangerous question for our sugar ladened minds friends. Sure, it may make your life risky and exciting, but do we really want our diet to be risky and exciting? That’s the kind of thinking that leads to buying a chicken salad sandwich out of a vending machine in a truck stop bathroom. The reason Why not? is such a dangerous question is that it is the exact question that our lazy minds want us to ask! We are so used to saying Why not? to every rotten food choice that we have beaten our willpower down to a shoulder shrug. Our minds want to do what makes us comfortable (I learned this from the book Working Out Sucks) and will always answer Why not? to the question “Is it ok that all I want to do when I come home is change into my pajamas and lay on the couch with a sleeve of Ritz crackers and a block of Sharp Cheddar?”

I encourage you today to find your “Why”s and leave the “Why not”s on the couch eating Funyuns and watching some drivel that comes on ABC Family. I promise you, they’re no fun to hang out with.

P.S. I wanted to tell you guys about something really cool that is happening in our community. A friend of mine, Lori Fox, is having to take special Chemo Treatments that require her to travel back and forth to Houston, TX. Her and her husband Joel have two kids and live on a fixed income, so these trips are very hard on their family. A group of their friends have gotten together and decided to throw a fundraiser in her honor. It will be Monday, February 13th at Taylor Grocery from 4:30 – 7:30. There will be plate dinners, a silent auction, and I have even heard tell of a bake sale. It’s going to be a great event and I encourage everyone in the area to swing by. You can find out more information on the Benefit’s Facebook page here. Also, if you don’t live in the area and are interesting in making a donation, you can contact me via email: evanwilliams25@gmail.com

Don Giovanni make you Jump!

Don’t forget friends, there is only one more day to enter the Buddy Fruits Giveaway. Go! Enter here! Now, before its too late!

I promise I am not a Buddy Fruits spokesperson,

but this is incredibly tasty. And handsome to boot. Look how the highlighter’s checking out his backside.

And it’s only 60 calories. It actually made me stop thinking about M & M’s. For about an hour.

It’s been a very happening weekend. I got up at 5:30 this morning, removed the crusties from my eyes, got dressed, realized I had my pants on backwards, realized the Kriss Kross re-enactment/dance party is on Tuesday, got redressed correctly, then headed up to the testing center. Occasionally I serve as a proctor for standardized testing for some extra money. You want to know a secret? Those tests really aren’t designed for the entertainment of the proctor. I was able to get my Sunday School lesson done, but that was in the first hour. I forgot to bring back up reading material and the test went on for another six hours. Imagine how awkward it is to try not to make eye contact with a room full of junior high/high school students. For six hours. Also, they are not allowed to have food in the testing room, so neither am I. I ate breakfast at 6 and didn’t eat again until two. I swear I heard my stomach bellow “Don Giooovaaaaannniiii!”

My mom made me some delicious oatmeal bakes to eat for breakfast this week.

This one was my favorite. I looked in the freezer and saw the label “Cookie Dough” and before I could stop myself I was halfway through! I don’t know what all was in it, but it kept me satisfied until lunch. I will ask Mom to post the link to the recipe in the comments (Mom, if you don’t mind?)

Nikki and I had a rough end of the week, so we thought a date was in order. A friend of ours gave us a Chili’s gift card for watching their cats, so we decided now was a good time to cash it in. I also had a coupon for free queso, so we had that as an appetizer and we both got burgers for our entree. I also drank a coke. No regrets and probably no weight loss this week. Eh, sometimes you just have to eat your feelings and jump back on the wagon the next day.

Which reminds me, in the excitement over getting the giveaway together I forgot to mention that the scale said that I had lost three pounds last week. I am almost out of the 290s, and I have not weighed that little in many years. This gives me the steam I need to press on, but I know if I want to meet my goal I will have to come up with an exercise plan. The main thing that is keeping me behind is that it is dark when I leave the house in the morning and dark when I get home! I think I am going to have to find some money in our budget to pay for a monthly gym fee. We have an Anytime Fitness in town and I would like to join there because you can go anytime you want. The only keeping me is the nagging feeling that I don’t want to be there alone at three in the morning with whoever else would come to a gym at three in the morning.

In case you didn’t get my jokes earlier in this post, here are some explanatory videos:

Enjoy your weekend!

PAJAMURAI!

If you haven’t already, don’t forget to enter my Buddy Fruits giveaway via this post. You have until Monday, January 30th, to enter. 

I am having trouble sleeping lately. I don’t know why, it might be because I am afraid that I will be visited by the whistling hell child again. I think it is mostly because I haven’t been consistent with my eating habits. I am going to have to sit down and come up with a strict pattern and then stick to it. I am seriously thinking about going to a registered dietician, but I really can’t afford it right now. Why doesn’t health insurance cover their customers trying to be healthier? You think it would be quite a boon to their business.

I am trying to have a healthy snack at night (around 8:30) that will sustain me throughout the night, but not do harm. I have been eating a spoonful of whatever nut butter I had on hand, but I tried a few different things this week. First up is the “necessity is the mother of invention” snack:

Banana smeared with Nutella.

While not a terrible idea, I did get too liberal with the Nutella. The stuff isn’t really all that healthy. Behind the scenes fun fact: seconds after this photo was taken my copy of the Help was covered in Nutella. For some strange reason I thought the book that I carry around all day was more sanitary than putting my peeled banana on the bare countertop.

The next night I tried this:

An apple & strawberry liquid fruit pouch by Buddy Fruits. While delicious, this is not a 8 hour sustaining snack. I think I shall revert to spoonfuls of natural peanut butter. Any other suggestions?

As you can probably tell from the photo above, I have been reading The Help. I was reading Working Out Sucks (and really enjoying it) when my wife and I decided to watch the movie version of The Help. It was a very good movie, and I would recommend it anyone. The main reason I agreed to watch the movie was that it stars Viola Davis and I would watch her make origami swans for two hours. Maybe three. In my humble opinion, she is the best working actress out there today. If you doubt my assertion, go rent Doubt and you will be convinced (see what I did there? Sneaky!) The good news is that she was nominated for an Oscar for her performance in The Help. I went to all this effort to say: I am now reading the book at the urging of my wife.

To go out on a light note, I’ll tell you a secret about me. During the day I am mild mannered Heavy Evan. But, at night I turn into….

PAJAMURAI!!!!!! 

 

Buddy Fruits! (GIVEAWAY) – Updated 1/25/12

I used to love Gushers as a child.

Do you remember those? They were little fruit snacks that had juice in the middle.

I am sure there was zero nutritional value in Gushers, which is probably why my mom wouldn’t let us have them very often. That is why I was so excited the first time I bit into Buddy Fruits!

These nutritious snacks remind me of Gushers in the best way. In fact they’re better because each pouch contains a single serving of fruit.

That is why I was so excited when they agreed to send this display out to me for review.

Nikki is a huge fan.

The display had three types of Buddy Fruits. There were the fruit snacks:

The fruit pouches:

and their newest product – Fruit Smoothies.

Here is a shot of the nutrition facts for each one (in the same order) for those that are interested.

This is the Pomegranate and Acai fruit snacks pouch.

The Apple and Cinnamon fruit pouch.

And the peach smoothie.

These are really great snacks. Let’s get down to the nitty-gritty here: these are marketed towards children. That being said, this grown, 29 year old bearded man loves them. The other day I was feeling the 10:00 hunger headache so I pulled out the peach smoothie pouch that I brought, downed it in five minutes, and it was smooth sailing to lunchtime.

I can imagine that these would also be really great for moms on the go. Each different type of snack is re-sealable. As for saving a little bit for later…

Very hard to do.

Like I said before, I have had the fruit snacks before and knew they were delicious so those were gone very fast.

But, I was a little apprehensive about the liquid fruit pouches.

I had seen them in the grocery store, but was wary about what was in them.

The best thing I can compare it to is Apple Sauce. Basically it’s go-gurt for Apple Sauce. Let’s call it Sprint Sauce. Nah…that doesn’t work. Fast Fruits, maybe? The texture is like apple sauce, but they come in many different flavors. For my review, I tried the apple cinnamon flavor.

Turns out my apprehension was ill founded because the pouches are very good. The Apple Cinnamon one tastes like a spiced Apple Sauce, maybe even a little like apple pie filling. Even though they don’t have to be refrigerated, they taste fresh. You are supposed to refrigerate them after you open them and Nikki and I both agreed that they taste better cold. The only complaint I have is that it is hard to get all of the fruit goodness out of the pouch. I used my squeeze-from-the-bottom toothpaste skills to try to get it all out and managed to fling it across the room. That might be a negative for mothers, if in fact they don’t already have worse things flung across their rooms.

The smoothies are also excellent. They are smooth and creamy. I tried the peach one for this review. When I took my initial slurp I was hit with an intense peach flavor that I didn’t expect. I didn’t feel good about one of the ingredients being “sweetened condensed skim milk”,but when put in perspective it is still a much better snack than ramen noodles or a can of ravioli. I am definitely guilty of snacking on both of those (when I was an adult, of course. My mom would never allow that). The grams of sugar in each may be shocking, but when they make this claim on the back of their pouch –

I worry about it less. If all of the sugars come from fruit then I consider it a good type of sugar. I am not suggesting that you feed it to your kids four times a day, but as a mid-morning/mid-afternoon snack you really can’t beat this all natural, healthy, gluten free Gushers alternative.

Now to the part you are all waiting for!

The GIVEAWAY!

Since Buddy Fruits was kind enough to share their products with me I am going to pass the love on to you guys, my loyal readers.

The lucky winner will get everything in the above picture: one fruit snacks pouch (If I can keep Nikki’s grubby hands off of them), three (Sprint Sauce, Fast Fruits) liquid fruit pouches, and two smoothie pouches. Also, to sweeten the deal, I will send the winner the original Magnificat sketch from this post.

I will sign the sketch and include a personal note. Isn’t that swell?!

All you have to do to enter is fulfill these three requirements:

  1. Like Heavy Evan on Facebook
  2. Like Buddy Fruits on Facebook
  3. Leave a comment on this post telling me you have liked both pages and tell me your favorite childhood snack and a possible healthier option

*Bonus entry – share this giveaway on to your friends on Facebook or followers on Twitter and post a link in the comments showing me you’ve done so.

If you just “don’t do Facebook” then tell me that in your comment and I will give you credit. If I find out later that you do have a Facebook profile, I will publicly shun you. Also, if you have already liked Heavy Evan, just give Buddy Fruits a like and let me know that in your comment.

So, get to liking and commenting! You have until this Sunday, January 29th at midnight to enter. I will then tally up everything, assign it a number and try to find one of those random number choosing thingys on the interwebs.

(Full disclosure: I was sent the entire display for free from Buddy Fruits for review. I was not, however, required to give a positive review. Those are all my own feelings folks! When have I not been honest with you?)

Also, if anyone has any concerns about the healthy aspects of these snacks (after seeing the nutrition facts) please sound off in the comments! I am really not an expert on figuring out those things.

**UPDATE (01/25/12) Just heard from my friends at Buddy Fruits and they said that they would be happy to send a sample out to the winner of the giveaway. That means that the winner will receive all the great stuff that I received from them (you can see it in the above pictures). This is great news friends! I will also still send the winner the wonderful Magnificat sketch and personal note from me, whether they want it or not! Don’t forget that you can get a bonus entry by sharing this giveaway with your friends on Facebook and Twitter. 

Meetings And Partings

My mom is back in town!

Here she is patiently waiting for me to make a mess of the cornbread recipe we were going to try. She has been in Savannah with Dad over the holidays so we invited her over for lunch and fun now that she is back. Nikki made the vegetable soup I mentioned before, and since my wife has the memory of an elephant on a daily dose of ginkgo biloba, she added a lot of seasoning. She also added worcestershire sauce which makes it NON vegetarian (it is made from anchovies). Mom wanted to provide something for the meal as well and we decided on cornbread from a recipe by Chocolate Covered Katie. If you decide to make the recipe we chose to use almond milk, organic sugar and just one pack of Stevia. Here are some pictures!

Measuring the corn meal. I am a stickler for exact measurements.

This is a picture of the wet and the dry mixes coming together. In the back you can see me fretting over what “mix until just mixed” means. I hate this kind of recipe language. For the life of me I can’t understand it. Why can’t people just say “mix it exactly ten times”? My mother and wife assured me that it meant just stir until things come together and don’t over stir, but because I was being so anal and neurotic about it my mom finally took over.

A tutorial for the insane.

Once it was properly mixed I poured it into my favorite skillet. We inherited one from Nikki’s grandmother that has slots that separates whatever you are cooking into eight pieces. It also makes it “crusty all around” as mom would say, which is delectable. Here is a shot pre-oven:

And post-oven:

This cornbread is really excellent. It crumbles like cornbread should, and the little bit of sweet really meshed well with the spicy of the vegetable soup.

My sweet mother also brought me a bag of roasted peanuts so I used the old food processor and made my own peanut butter. Here are some shots.

It takes a good bit of time for peanuts to become peanut butter. Above is a picture halfway through the process.

I put in a little sea salt for flavor. Mom said “a pinch” which is another recipe word that I don’t understand, so I just poured it in and tasted it to see if it was too much. I would say that I wound up putting in about two teaspoons worth. Here is the finished product:

Not bad for a $1.99 bag of peanuts.

Mom also brought some Barbara’s Whole Wheat Fig Bars.

These were very good. They remind of the Little Debbie fig bars we used to eat all the time when we were kids. Except, these are much healthier.

I don’t mean to bring it down at the end here, but we have been dealing with a lot of death around here lately. A lot of our friends and friends of friends and friends of family have been dying. Sometimes it just piles up on you. To keep with the Muppet Christmas Carol theme I wanted to use a quote from that movie to help me deal with everything:

“It’s all right, children. Life is made up of meetings and partings. That is the way of it. I am sure that we shall never forget Tiny Tim, or this first parting that there was among us.” Kermit the Frog as Bob Cratchit 

I love this quote because it says so much in so little. “That is the way of it” means everyone we love and know now will eventually be dead. There is nothing we can do to stop that. True immortality lies in the memories of your friends and family. Our friends will live forever in our memories, for they are the stars of that movie. There is not much comfort in that, but it is the truth. Really, there are no words to say. My brother and I had a good talk about how people react to death. You all know that you have been at a funeral and heard some of the stupidest stuff said to the grieving. Ryan and I tend to try to stay in the back and be silent. I like to think that I will be there for them when they need me, but I won’t be in their face about it. I don’t know what to say, so I don’t say anything.

I want to end by sharing this video with you that my brother posted on his blog. I think they handled this situation very well. Sorry for the poor quality and spammy ads, but it is the only place you can find this video.