Saturday, July 12, 2014

starting over.

My life has been a rough one. By the grace of god i made it through this last one. -- I've struggled with addiction since I was fifteen years old. Although i know I was an addict long before my first use. I've always searched for something to make me happy. Growing up I felt as if I never fit anywhere: not with my family, not at school, not with friends. I never seemed to be a loner, but I was on the inside. Drinking in Highschool was accepted and was all I wanted to do. From the use of my first mood altering substance, I thought I had found what I needed. I was happy. I was introduced to opiates when I was fifteen. Hello drug of choice. When I first started using them, I was completely who I wanted to be.  I did have dry spells in my addiction. Such as pregnancies, and June 12- September 13. After Lenix was born in 2011  I thought I had hit my bottom. Postpartum depression had introduced itself to me & I self medicated. I still functioned in daily life, even keeping a 3.8 gpa, & raising two kids. Casey came home from his deployment and I came clean. He had always known I had a problem, but never knew I'd take it to extremes of 50-60 norco or lortabs a day. My day consisted of finding pills. That's pretty much it. We went home to ND again until his deployment in September of 2013.  I moved home again, which was probably the beginning of my mistakes.  --- & just like clockwork as every addict does, I picked up right where I left off. Not only that but I picked up a new drug as well. Methamphetamine. ---- even the name is shameful and hurts to even type. There's a reason people call certain drugs "hard drugs". It's easy to sit back and look down on someone who uses it. I've always thought it was a trashy drug myself. I even hated it while doing it. I'd sit there while high, look up horror stories of children found in meth labs, look at before & after pictures, then put my phone down & hit the pipe, sick to my stomach. It doesn't make any sense.  I ll skip all the stories about me staying up for 12 days at a time, because I don't like to glorify it. I've noticed that I sometimes glam it up like it was fun, and then I remember the last two weeks before Mother's Day of this year. I began isolating myself, putting my babies off on other people, and hurting my loved ones beyond repair. All I cared about was that next high. That shit took me down really fast. I contemplated suicide because my life was worthless and I didn't have anything left but my drug & that was even getting slim. I went to jail in may & spent Mother's Day in jail; I found god that day. I'll journal about that in a different post. - I went to rehab at the Mississippi State Hospital. I felt so relieved to be there. I noticed that I was slowly starting to feel again. In active addiction, I used to feel numb. I had suppressed past issues and events in my life that I shouldn't have. Physical pain isn't a problem, it's the emotional pain that I can't handle. In rehab i forgave people for things that had been done years ago. Things that I had hidden deep within, that made me form hatred for people who probably don't ever even think of me after all these years gone by. - I began to feel whole again. I had my mind back. They say as recovering addicts we live in a fourth dimension.  And I fully believe it.  Today I like to wake up and drink coffee outside. Just to stop and take note of gods creations. I've been humbled. I've never been so thankful for anything like I have my sobriety. The ability to see things in a way that I haven't been able to since I was fifteen years old. Even my personality is like it was in jr high. For eight years I walked on this earth as something like a zombie. I didn't feel emotion & I had lost all personality. I was a miserable being.  - Now little things such as a good laugh, seeing a butterfly, or even being in the summer rain just make me feel alive.  I live everyday in complete amazement of Gods wonders & blessings. Since I've been at my secondary rehab in hattiesburg, I've made friends with people who relapsed. I've heard of people my age overdosing. To be honest, I'm so afraid. For the first time in my life I'm afraid of drugs. I know something as simple as a bad day can trick my mind into using. The term "ones too many & one thousand is never enough" comes to my mind. I know one use isn't possible for me. I'm not a functioning addict, and I had no control over my addictions. They had consumed my life. I'm so afraid of losing the new found happiness I now have. It's important for me to remember I have a choice. I never have to use again. I never have to live the miserable life of chasing that high again. -- addiction is a disease. It's just like cancer to me. Once you have it, it's always there. But you can recover. Some recover just for short amounts of time followed by worsening relapse,like a period of remission. Addiction is even deadly. Even though this addiction thing has pretty much destroyed my life as I knew it, I'm so grateful. Because now I'm learning how to live again & this time I get to experience all of these emotions. I get to "stop & smell the roses". I get to feel happy& now when I laugh I feel it inside of me. The happiness and joy of life amazes me. I'm not ashamed of my past because it's made me who I am today. 

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Crockpot/Freezer Cooking--42 Meals

It's been over a year since my last post. One of my best friends wrote me & told me I needed to start blogging again. So, with requests I've decided to share my new found obsession. Crockpot Freezer cooking. I'm goging to share my recipies & even supply you with a shopping list. Let me start by saying, I am a picky eater. I cannot stand biting into an onion. So if youre going to use my shopping list, PAY ATTENTION.

  • Onion, Garlic, Rosemary, Parsley. - If you want to stand there chopping & mincing all day, go right ahead. I however use the powder. 
  • Beef Broth & Chicken Broth- I often have a shopping list that has 8 cans of chicken broth. Save your money & buy the bullion cubes. Just add a cup of water to every cube used.
  • Cheese- You're going to need a lot. That's inevitable. 
  • When it comes to chicken, it's boneless, skinless chicken breasts unless specified otherwise.
  • I usually use 3 for every meal. One for me, husband & split between the children. 
First I'll start with the basics. Label your bags. What it is, Date, & Any instructions you might need to remember. If you're cooking from frozen it's going to take longer. I always sit mine in the sink the night before & let it thaw.
Some people label all their bags, filling them up all at the same time. That is a mess to me. When I get in from shopping, I sit everything on my counter. & fill my bags one by one. It's really simple. I fill the no cook/no prep food first.


Cheesy Ravioli Bake

2 9 oz. packages of Refrigerator Ravioli
(I used the roasted portabello mushroom flavor)
1 Jar Prego Spagetti Sauce
2 cups shredded cheese

Directions:  Place the ravioli and sauce in freezer bag and freeze.  When ready to cook, thaw slightly and add to crockpot.  Top with shredded cheese and cook on low for 4-6 hours.

Honey Rosemary Chicken

IN THE BAG- 2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken breasts or thighs, cut into bite sized pieces, 1/3 c balsamic vinegar, 1/3 c honey, 1/3 c olive oil, 3 T chopped fresh rosemary, 1 t salt. Let marinate for several hours in the refrigerator before freezing.

TO COOK- Let defrost completely in the fridge. Add 1 cup of water and the contents of the bag to the crockpot. Then cook on high for 3-4 hours or low for 6-8 hours.

These recipies you add chicken, how many ever will serve you or your family.

Chicken with Honey Sauce
•         1 cup honey
•         1/2 cup soy sauce
•         1/8 cup chopped onion (that you set aside earlier)
•         1/4 cup ketchup
•         2 Tbs. vegetable oil
•         3 cloves garlic, minced
•         1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes *if you don’t like heat, don’t add these

 Sesame Chicken 
•         1 cup soy sauce
•         2/3 cup brown sugar
•         1/2 tsp. garlic powder
•         1/2 tsp. ground ginger
•         2 Tbsp. ketchup
•         2 Tbsp. sesame seeds (you can toast if you want.. I am lazy so I don’t


2 Cloves Garlic -- chopped
4 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 Tablespoons Chopped Parsley
3 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
1/8 Teaspoon Pepper
1 1/2 Pounds Chicken Piece

2 Tablespoons Water
1 Teaspoon Salt
1.5 Tablespoons Maple Syrup
1 Tablespoon Chili Powder

1/4 cup Butter -- Melted
1/8 cup Soy Sauce
1/2 cup Honey
4 boned and skinned chicken breast halves

3/4 cup Ketchup
3/4 cup Blackberry Jelly (Strawberry, peach, and apricot also work well)
1/4 cup White Vinegar
1 Teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
2 Teaspoons Chili Powder
1/8 Teaspoon Salt

2 Tablespoons Water
1 Teaspoon Salt
1.5 Tablespoons Maple Syrup
1 Tablespoon Chili Powder

2 Cloves Minced Garlic
4 Tablespoons Dijon Mustard
2 Tablespoons Lime Juice

4 Tablespoons Chopped Onion
1.5 Tablespoons Honey
1 Tablespoon Soy Sauce
1 Tablespoon Minced Ginger

1/4 cup Butter, Melted
1/8 cup Soy Sauce
1/2 cup Honey

1/2 cup Beer
3 Tablespoons Sesame Seeds
3 Tablespoons Honey
2 Tablespoons Dijon Mustard
1/2 Teaspoon Pepper
2 Cloves Crushed Garlic

2 Cloves Chopped Garlic
4 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 Tablespoons Chopped Parsley
3 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
1/8 Teaspoons Pepper

2/3 cup Lemon Juice
1/4 cup Cider Vinegar
1/4 cup Vegetable Oil
2 Tablespoons Minced Onion

1/2 Teaspoon Lime Peel
2 Cloves Minced Garlic
1/4 cup Lime Juice
1 Teaspoon Pepper
1 Tablespoon Vegetable Oil
1 Teaspoon Basil
1/4 Teaspoon Salt

Sweet & Sour Chicken
1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons Honey
1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons Sherry Vinegar
1/8 cup Soy Sauce
2 Teaspoons Minced Ginger
4 Cloves Crushed Garlic

1 Package Taco Seasoning
8 oz Jelly
12 oz Salsa

2 Tablespoons Oil
1 Tablespoon Soy Sauce
3 Tablespoons Smooth Peanut Butter
3 Tablespoons Ketchup

1 Clove Garlic, Crushed
1/3 cup Soy Sauce
2 Tablespoons Rice Wine (Or Sherry)
1.5 Tablespoons Cider Vinegar

Crock Pot Cheesy Chicken and Rice
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts 
1 -8 ounce box Zatarain's Yellow Rice Mix, cooked according to directions 
1 cup cheddar cheese 
1 - can cream of chicken soup 
1 - can whole kernel corn, drained

Creamy Chicken
3 chicken breast
1 can cream of chicken soup
½ can water
Salt and pepper 

Thai Chicken Wings with Peanut Sauce
2 lbs. chicken drumsticks or wings
1/2 cup bottled salsa
1/4 cup Peanut Butter
3 T lime juice
3 T soy sauce
3 T water
2 T freshed chopped ginger
1/4 cup sugar
2 cloves garlic chopped

1 onion, chopped
1 (16 ounce) can chili beans
1 (15 ounce) can black beans
1 (15 ounce) can whole kernel corn, drained
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 (12 fluid ounce) can or bottle beer (or broth)
2 (10 ounce) cans diced tomatoes with green chilies, undrained
1 (1.25 ounce) package taco seasoning
3 whole skinless, boneless chicken breasts
shredded Cheddar cheese (optional garnish after cooking)
sour cream (optional garnish after cooking)

Lemon garlic Chicken
1/2 tsp. salt
 1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
 2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
 2 T. butter
 1/4 c. water
 3 T. fresh lemon juice
 2 cloves garlic, minced
 1 tsp. chicken bouillon granules
 1 tsp. chopped fresh parsley (I didn't have fresh parsley, so I just used dried and  it worked   perfectly)
 1 package cream cheese (you can use 1/3 less fat or fat free)

Brown Sugar Chicken - 
--1 cup brown sugar 
--1/4 cup Sprite
--2/3 cup vinegar 
--3 cloves smashed and chopped garlic
--2 T soy sauce 
--1 tsp ground black pepper

1 pound red beans
7 cups water
2 Tablespoons of minced garlic 
2 cans chicken broth
1-1/2 pounds sausage 
2 Tablespoons Creole Seasoning (I use Tony's)

Beef Tips 
2 lbs of stew meat (or buy a roast and ask butcher to cut into stew meat for you)
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 pack of dry onion soup mix
1 can of sprite (8-10 ounces) 

Chicken Soft Tacos
- 5 frozen chicken breasts
- 1 can enchilada sauce
- 1 package taco seasoning
- 35-40 tortillas
- Shredded mexican cheese
Put first 3 ingredients in crock pot.  Cook 5-6 hours on low, or until chicken is done.  Shred chicken, return to crock pot for another hour.  Fill tortillas with chicken and cheese.  Roll up, wrap in foil, freeze batches of tacos in gallon sized zip lock bags

Colorado Beef Burritos
2 lb. stew beef
2 12 oz. cans enchilada sauce
1 cup chopped onion
1 cup beef stock
6 flour tortillas
2 cups shredded cheese 
Directions:  Label bag and add the stew beef, 1 can enchilada sauce, onions and beef stock.  Freeze until ready to cook.  Thaw slightly and place in slow cooker.  Cook on low for 6-8 hours until beef is tender.  Remove beef and shred.  Divide beef between the flour tortillas, place in greased baking dish, top with other can of enchilada sauce and cheese and bake for 20-30 minutes until cheese is melted and bubbly.  Serve with salsa, guacamole, shredded lettuce and tomatoes

BEEF - With pretty much all beef recipes you have to do a little cooking.
Wendy’s Chili
2 pounds ground beef – brown and drain
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
1 can ranch style beans
1 can kidney beans
1 can rotel
1 can stewed tomatoes
2 cans tomato sauce 
1 pack McCormick mild chili seasoning

Taco Chili
1 lb. cooked ground beef
1 medium onion chopped
1 can corn drained
1 can black beans drained
1 can navy beans drained
1 8 oz can tomato sauce
2 14 oz. cans diced tomatoes
1 small can diced green chilies
1 package taco seasoning 

Black bean taco soup
1 lb ground beef (or ground turkey tastes so good in this recipe too!)
1 medium onion, chopped
1 package mild taco seasoning mix
1 16 oz can corn (undrained)
1 16 oz can black beans, drained and rinsed (you could use kidney beans or pinto beans)
1 14 oz can stewed tomatoes
1 14 oz can diced tomatoes
1 8 oz can tomato sauce
1 4 oz can diced green chilis
tortilla chips
Other taco toppings you like (cheese, sour cream, avocado, etc)

 Slow cooker Lasagna
1 lb. lean ground beef (could be substituted for italian sausage)
 1 jar spaghetti sauce
 1 c. water
 1 pkg. Kraft Italian Cheese (approx. 2 cups)
 1/4 c. grated parmesan cheese
 1 egg
 2 tbsp. parsley
 6 lasagna noodles, uncooked

Crockpot Cheesy Chicken Spaghetti 
16 oz. dry spaghetti, cook and drain 
1 lb. Velveeta Cheese 
2 cups cooked, chopped chicken (I use white meat from a rotisserie chicken)
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 can cream of chicken soup
1 can of petite diced tomatoes (optional) 
1/2 cup water
salt & pepper to taste

1 lb stew beef, seared and just cooked through
1 can beef broth
2 cans cream of mushroom soup
1/4c worcestershire sauce
1 pack brown gravy mix
1 tbsp pepper
(egg noodles and sour cream)
Serve with Egg Noodles

These recipes require cooking & shredding Chicken before you prepare, then freeze.

Creamy Mexican Chicken Pasta

1 jars alfredo sauce
1 jar salsa
1 pack taco seasoning
2 chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
(rotini pasta and cheddar cheese)

Directions: Mix everything together and freeze.

Directions for bag: Mix contents with 1lb rotini pasta…pour in a greased 9x13 casserole dish. Top with cheddar cheese. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

crushed tortilla chips (optional garnish after cooking)

Combine all ingredients into a Ziploc bag. Freeze. Thaw and cook on low for 6-8 hours. Shred chicken in crock pot once cooking is done. Serve topped with shredded Cheddar cheese, a dollop of sour cream, and crushed tortilla chips, if desired. Served approx. 5-6 people.

Pulled BBQ Chicken

1 bottle bbq sauce
2 chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
1/4c chicken broth

Directions: Mix sauce, chicken and broth. Freeze.

Don't freeze these in glass, buy the aluminum trays & cover with tin foil to freeze.

Simple Macaroni and Beef with Cheese
2 cans stewed tomatoes (not drained)
 1.5 pounds lean ground beef—brown and drain 
 1 box  elbow macaroni noodles – boil and drain
 1 cup grated cheddar cheese 
1 cup grated mozzarella cheeses

Brown and drain meat, add tomatoes.  Boil pasta and drain then add to the meat and tomato mixture.  Spray 9x13 baking dish and pour in mixture.  Top with cheese and freeze.
 bake 375 degrees 30-45 minutes until bubbly

Honey Garlic Pork Chop
4 boneless pork chops 
¼ cup honey 
3 teaspoons soy sauce
3 Tablespoons of minced garlic 
Mix honey, soy sauce and garlic and pour over pork chops.  freeze.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes  (you could do the same with chicken breast you just may have to cook the chicken a little longer) 

Mexican Dorito Casserole 
2 c. shredded cooked chicken
1 c. shredded cheese (or more if you are a cheese hound)
1 can cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup sour cream
1 can Ro-tel tomatoes (canned tomatoes with jalepenos-mild)
1/2 packet taco seasoning (or more- to taste)
Bag of doritos
Mix all & freeze in baking dish. Thaw & cover with doritos, bake at 350

John Wayne Casserole
Adapted from Mississippi Magazine
2 pounds ground beef, cooked and drained
1 packet taco seasoning
4 ounces sour cream
4 ounces mayonnaise
8 ounces shredded Cheddar cheese
2 cups biscuit mix

1. Heat oven to 325. Brown ground beef and add taco seasoning and water (as directed on taco seasoning pack) set aside
2. In a separate bowl, combine sour cream, mayonnaise, 4 ounces of cheddar cheese, set aside.
3. Stir biscuit mix and water (directions on box) to form soft dough. Pat dough on the bottom and one-half-inch up the sides of a 9 x 13 in. greased casserole dish.
5. On top of biscuit mix, evenly distribute ingredients in the following order: ground beef, sour cream mixture and top with remaining shredded cheese. (probably add more cheese to the top)
7. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until edges of dough are lightly browned.  

I am going to post a shopping list tomorrow if someone plans to make all of these. 

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Nice to meet you L2.

So obviously I've seriously fallen behind in blogging. A lot has happened since my last post:as in Birthed a baby, my husband is overseas, i moved my two kids & myself completely across country, & I'm in college. Therefore, Im hoping my absence has been excused. Now , How do I even begin to start. I've had so many things happen to me & I think to myself, "oh, I should write this down." 9 times out of 10, I forget. So here goes nothing. Lets start where we left off. 
November- Sunday the 13th- Spent the day with Casey & Lainey playing as hard as we could. At about 4 Lainey layed down for a nap & I started having mild contractions. (I had contractions all pregnancy, So a lot of false alarms) 5-6 p.m. - stronger, very uncomfortable pains. 7 p.m.- Casey lets go this is it. We got to the hospital at about 710. They came in & checked me (4 cm) The Dr refused to believe it was real. They said I could stay for an hour & they'd "monitor" me. By 745 I was begging them to come & check me. PLEASE. My answer was steadily No. After me breaking down in tears the nurse finally decides she'd check me. (5 1/2cm) I guess once she saw I'd made significant change in about 30 minutes she decided she'd let my Dr know. By this time I was begging for something to help with my pain. Its an overwhelming pain that I would try to fight & after a few seconds my body would take it upon itself to scream. I couldn't even hold the scream in;It hurt that bad. Between contractions (they were 30-45seconds apart) I would beg my nurse for anything to help with pain. A shot, a pill, epidural, anything. She'd always respond " Would you like tylenol or ibuprofen?" [Excuse my language here] But Bitch have you ever birthed a damn child?! (real heavy emphasis on bitch) They kept telling me they'd call for my epidural soon. Finally the man got there to give me the miracle drug. My husband held  me & calmed me somewhat. If it weren't for him I wouldnt have been able to get it. My body was under so much.   The man got the thing in & gives me a test drip. Everything was fine. He tells my nurse to check me. (9cm) "oh, sorry ma'am but we cant give you the actual meds. you're too far into labor." ARE YOU KIDDING? It was a cold, brutal reality for someone who had an amazing, no pain first labor to realize that this one was going to be everything but pain free. Suddenly, I have this huge urge to either push or squeeze. I told mu nurse how I felt. "Better hold him in honey, your doctor's not even at the hospital. She's about 20 minutes away." Great. Lovely. Amazing. i had no choice, so I squeezed. The doctor finally got there & as soon as she walked in the room I asked if I could push. "Go Ahead." Push. Push. Doctor says WOW.Casey got excited & screamed one more time momma! Push. Baby Crying. - That sums it up. I literally pushed 3 times & there was my angel. They take him, clean him up & doctors all rush out of my room. The nurse says "okay, Let's take a shower." WHAT. Have you been asleep?? because I just had a baby 2 minutes ago! SO as instructed & without arguing (because Im a weak tit) I get up & take a shower to find out I had to walk down the hall to a new room. This new room is our home for the next 3 days & I may or may not have to share it with another mommy & her baby. If I had to share the room, then Casey would have to leave. This is when I finally realized I had been completely robbed of a "blissful" birthing experience. I honestly felt like I was in a third-world country. All that was missing was boiling water & straw mats. I know that my grandmothers all did this natural, but I was spoiled with having Lainey at Wesley Medical Center. It was amazing & I experienced no pain whatsoever. Of course now I love the fact that I had a natural birthing experience. I feel more woman. I endured every second of that pain to give my child life. & Im super glad that my husband was there with me, to see how lucky "the male" is. In some ways, I feel like even if I did have a better experience, I still wouldn't have been completely happy because Casey was still leaving in 2 weeks. & That was on my mind constantly. 
That is my birth story #2. - I still have to cover the months of December & January to actually "catch up", but I figured this was a decent starting point since it was such a huge moment. 


This was the first picture of Lenix, 

AN HOUR OLD OLD. :) IN OUR "NEW ROOM"  Notice the other bed.