New Camera on the Horizon and Enchilada Casserole

Good morning! Got my coffee here, getting me going. Nothing like the first few hot glorious sips of your morning coffee! The afternoon one not bad but…I look forward to this part of the morning every day! Drinking Starbuck’s this morning. Not sure which type – possibly the Colombian.

Photo by fotografierende on Pexels.com

Thanks to those that watched the video (see previous post) And I have 22 subscribers up from 17 I think. So I thank you all for that. The views, the likes, and the subscriptions help with the “algorithm” that brings it to the top or keeps it stuffed down to the bottom since there is a lot of competition out there. The fun part is to enjoy the journey. And I love every step of making the videos.

I’m already entertaining the thought of a new camera set up. Even have a certain one in mind. But I’ll wait til 1) I have enough blow money saved up and 2) til we can start getting out there and going on excursions. However, it did occur to me that while we are NOT going on excursions that I could be learning the camera settings. I am intimidated by camera settings. I am not one that enjoys reading instructions either. I don’t know why but when it comes to learning, I’d rather be shown and take notes. And now there’s YouTube. And a lot of people are using the nice digital Canon cameras. I would really like to be able to take quality pics and videos. It will really make a difference when we go on vacation. I briefly considered buying the camera before our trip to Texas and got really excited. But I think I am a little short on the cash as I’ll want accessories and stuff. And an expensive camera is not something you buy on a whim, and it’s not Christmas or my birthday. I think it’s important to work for something and save for it and it makes you appreciate it more. It’s a hobby – not flooring after all. I think we need flooring worse but we’d do 12 months same as cash for that. lol

I need to do a little more research on them to see which one is the exact one for me. But it is something that is getting closer! I might also add a little twist of making myself have a certain number of subscribers first, but having a better camera and better videos may bring more subscribers, so….maybe that is not something I should have as a stipulation.

So this past Sunday, I made an Enchilada Casserole. George and I decided it would be in our “keeper recipes” and something we immediately wanted to make for everyone! lol.

It was also a recipe we did together. George fried the tortillas for me and sliced up the avocado I chopped, sautéd, and layered. For some reason it reminded us of George’s Dad (Granda) who so lovingly made his tacos for everyone.

You must start out with a pretty casserole dish from the Pioneer Woman! You get a set of 2 sizes at Walmart for practically not much. I think it was under 30 dollars for the set.

A layer of fried corn tortillas on the bottom – didn’t call for casserole to be greased since I guess this puts out enough oil, lol.

The grass-fed beef was amazing in this – 2 lbs. I used anaheim peppers (3 of them) and a medium onion and cooked it all together along with some garlic. And add your tomato sauce to it. Only I forgot to add the sauce so I did it in the next step. lol. It worked out.

You do a layer of tortillas (6 of them) and then put in half the meat mixture. Then you put another layer of tortillas (6 of them) and the rest of the meat.

Then you pour on the cream of chicken soup and if you forgot the tomato sauce add it here. And add a 1/2 soup can of milk and shredded Mexican Style cheese. I used the whole package and I believe it was 2 cups.

Then it baked at 350 for about 30 minutes until the cheese was all bubbly.

I recommend having a fresh sliced avocado available or fresh tomatoes and what I wished we had was some shredded lettuce and sour cream. We served with black beans, but it would also be good with refried beans or western style pintos.

We loved this! Although this dish is good anytime… I think this dish would be good at Christmas time or Thanksgiving when everyone is tired of ham and turkey and traditional holiday fair. It would also make a good “vacation” casserole if you have a condo or cabin with a kitchen. It didn’t take a lot of effort to make this. Even the tortillas fry up about 30 seconds on each side.

It’s a keeper recipe and will now be one of the favorites. We may try some variations just for fun – like using enchilada sauce instead of tomato sauce but as George said “it was really darn good with the plain tomato sauce”

And of course we are now in Season 2 of Bloodline. Only I fell asleep on the 2nd show. I guess I was tired and relaxed.

I had some other things I was going to blog about but I guess that will have to wait. It’s payroll day and I need to get going.

Hope you all have a good one and if you didn’t get to see the video, see the previous post.

Take care! More tomorrow.

New Video Uploaded and My Thoughts on Getting Rid of a Funky Mood

Here it is! My Social Media Experiment and Sharing Clay Pot Cooking. This one is shorter, has some good music, pretty scenery, our fur babes and a few fun clips.

If you like it, give it a thumbs up on You Tube and if you want to see more, please subscribe. My first goal is to get to 100 subscribers. I think I’m at 17 right now. And that is better than 4! I am enjoying learning how to create these videos and have a series of goals in mind as it progresses. I’m looking forward to being able to share more as we get to do more and travel more. For now most of these are simply shot at home. And while I will often have office shots, I long to get out and see some things and have some new experiences once this COVID thing is over!

Feeling a Little Sad and Lost

And I’m sitting here staring at the computer not sure what to say next! When does that EVER happen? I have just been at complete relax mode. And the result is that I am wanting to write in bullet points instead of complete paragraphs.

I’ve noticed, quite surprisingly, this weekend, if I’m honest, that I have been a little sad, a little lost, a little unsure, a little disconnected. My normal “drive” to work on things is just not there. I am pleased as punch that we are going to be grandparents so complete happiness there! But I have been a little lost with my time this weekend. I am disappointed when I don’t make the most of the time I have to “get things done”. But when I look at the list, there is just not much of anything that I need to be in a hurry to GET DONE! However, I’ve enjoyed doing what I wanted to do, which was “not much”.

Impromptu Evening with Family

But we did have a fun impromptu evening yesterday when Susan, my SIL called and said they were at the airport flying in from a trip. I asked if they wanted to come over for a happy hour cocktail on the way home. Yes they did. And we enticed them to eat dinner, which was Pheasant, home fries (potato wedges), salad, green beans, and pistachio pudding for dessert. And look at this, not even a photo of the food to show for it. As you can see that is quite unlike me. I’ve just let everything go by the wayside this weekend I suppose. But we had a great time hearing about their trip and talking. It totally made my day!

I had asked Mom if she wanted to come up for the weekend. I asked too late really. I knew we’d be going down there to see her in a couple of weeks. But at the last minute, once I knew due to the rise in COVID that we would be staying home all weekend with no outings, on a whim I asked if she would like to come. Mom has to have more notice though as she already had her own vision of enjoying the 4th at her house! I think she is like me and likes to plan and have a mindset sometimes before just taking off to go somewhere for a couple of days. Who wouldn’t?

Although impromptu is great sometimes, and it was fun and much needed when Susan and Kevin came over last night. We had a lot of fun. We also talked about camping. And you know I want to do some RV camping (no tent camping) but….I just don’t know where to start honestly b/c I don’t think George will want to just dive into this with me. Renting is a big deal usually requiring 3 nights and no dogs – at least the ones around here have not been easy for us to do. I have my heart set on something like a Leisure Van one day. George doesn’t want to pull anything but I’m still kinda thinking about a little mini something or other we could pull with my SUV as it would be less expensive. It would have to be small though. I just don’t know. There is also the thought that I might be able to trade mine in for something that would pull more. My wheels are turning on this and have been for a while. It would really set my heart in motion to be able to camp some of these COVID weekends. Take a book, cook our meal, go for a hike, or a walk, take a drive in the area. Meet some other folks in the process. Maybe one day.

Neighborhood Fireworks

Last night, once the fireworks on TV started from neighboring firework displays, we began hearing fireworks being shot in our neighborhood and decided to look. Never ever have I heard so many fireworks going off at once in a neighborhood area. And they were beautiful. People had the good kind. We stood in the middle of the front yard and twirled from side to side in a circle in awe as we saw the lights or heard the crackling sounds across the sky. It was amazing to hear so many going off at once and seeing them all around us in every direction. I started to take pics but it’s just never the same. And we have trees so sometimes it was hard to see many of them clearly.

Random Thoughts

OK, so we head back to work tomorrow. There will be plenty there to deal with. I also have to call my dentist and get rebooked and call my Physician and see if I need to do a virtual visit to get renewed for my BP Rx or if I have to go in. I really don’t want to go in with COVID all blown up as it is. But I have to have my blood pressure meds, so go figure.

I spent time yesterday getting my LessHustleMoreCoffee accounts (Instagram and Twitter) like I want them. I think I plan to just use those from now on but won’t remove my other one. It makes sense to have this one as my main one since it is a Blog/Vlog of my life anyway.

I’m making Enchilada Casserole tonight for dinner. I figured George could use a break. I also hear it thundering outside. We have some pop up storms coming I think. I guess we should take the dogs out before it gets bad. But they are sleeping good.

Getting rid of the Funky Mood:

I seem to remember that July and January always seems to bring a funk with it. That is totally what is going on. I’m in a funk! Do you ever get in a funk? I wonder what the key is to getting out of a funk? I think the key for me is to:

  1. Take a step back and look at everything and refocus on what is important.
  2. Make sure I’m taking vitamins and supplements because sometimes you just need a more balanced diet to be your best self.
  3. Plan something fun.
  4. Just get up and start moving.
  5. Set specific goals of what you need/want to do and then go do it.
  6. Talk with another human about any subject, lol.
  7. Journal like I’m doing now.
  8. Ask God what He needs you to do and are you Realigned. I guess that should be #1 huh?
  9. Hug your pet or your human?
  10. Drink coffee/wine depending what day it is and play a game, watch a show, read or create a diversion for yourself!
  11. Go shopping if it is not in the middle of a COVID pandemic! That always lifts my mood, lol.
  12. Change up the day somehow or try something new.

And I will leave it at that!

Hope you all had a great 4th of July Weekend! I’d love to hear what you enjoyed best about your weekend. I hope you all are not in a funky mood like I am! Ha! But I’ll be fine!

Vlog Equipment, Night Out, Space Launch, Nashville Violence – What a Day!

Ahhh it was the most beautiful day yesterday – both inside and outside of the house. George opened the windows and the breeze came through all over the house. It was noticeably warm from about 2 to 4 but not too hot. And began cooling down after that.

It was also wonderful to be off and to have most of the day before us. I began with laundry as I usually do. I’m really happy with the new machine. I’ve noticed it does not take as long to do the laundry, they smell amazing, and I love the little tune it plays at the end.

This machine has a place to put the softener and I no longer have to use the “ball”, which didn’t work very well anyway. Just very happy with this LG Model.

Now if it would only do the ironing for me. I like to fold. And I like to iron if I have something good to listen to. But lately I really am starting to despise having to iron because I want to do something else instead. Like the to do list that is hard to get done.

So, I did knock some things off my list yesterday. I worked on the blog and was able to get a section added to add the video in the sidebar. I can add the latest video in there from YouTube. I also changed the Instagram one from my Personal one to the Blog one. I wish it was easy having two accounts on there. I have to log off and then relog in to go back and forth on my phone. But that’s ok. I rarely get on Instagram anyway. It will mostly stay on the Blog one. And I also switched Twitter accounts to the blog one. I deleted my old one I think. I am just not on it much anyway. But wanted to connect the blog and will share the posts there some.

I also ordered a selfie stick. I looked at gimbals and they were really more than I wanted to spend right now. But the selfie stick has the tripod, bluetooth capability (to turn on and off from a distance), will extend out to like 45 inches. I was careful to go with not the cheapest one and as a beginner was not wanting to go ALL OUT. I also picked one that would work with iphone (and future models as I still have the 8Plus), but also will allow camera and go pro cams. So at some point, would be able to use those if I get those cameras at some point.

Have you noticed with me that this is addictive? Much like any other hobby, it can come with a price tag. But it’s a wee investment.

I also bought a simple microphone. I just bought one that will enhance that had good ratings and it even had the little “muff” thing for curtailing the wind. I’ll have to try it out for comparison with and without the microphone.

Both of these items and a lightning cable for the right connector for the iphone/microphone and 2 spray bottles – only came to like $80 bucks. So as life goes on and I keep enjoying this journey, then we’ll improve as needed along the way.

I’m noticing that most doing these videos start with iphone and then morph to a Canon EOS M50. Or something like that. I’ve coveted a Canon for a long time. Oh gosh! But for what I’ve needed for blogging, the iphone has been fabulous. The iphone has just been my right arm for everything. I loved it from the very beginning when I was taunted to switch over from Droid to iPhone. It’s been wonderful. I know the Droids can take good photos too but they have both improved over the years. You can even do an imovie from your phone but the computer one has more bells and whistles. Anyway, these things will help with steadying the videos, helping the audio along, and will allow me to NOT have the camera in my face. And that will help with me being more comfortable in front of the camera and will not give such a close up! I’m also going to have to put lipstick in my purse for the Car Chat pieces. But the Car Chats have to improve with the angle. lol

Anyway, the Canon is about $599. And eventually people add the wide angle lens. It has to have the screen though where you can see yourself vlogging. I know nothing about these yet, but decided to set a goal and if I reach a certain amount of subscribers on YouTube I’ll reward myself with it. I could buy it now with stimulus money but I’d rather make myself wait for it so I appreciate it more. I have not decided what the goal is yet. I’ve only set one goal. That is 100 subscribers. I get my own URL from YouTube when I reach that instead of a number. As of now I have SEVEN! But it’s better than 4! Ha.

I think the subscribers will come as I improve and get it out there. There is some part of me that doesn’t really want it out there just yet anyway – while I learn and grow, develop content, and so forth and get a rhythm and routine and come into my niche some. I think that is usually the way it goes.

I have worked on my ideas some for future videos. I am using Evernote to capture my ideas.

I was trying to think of all the things I’m paying a subscription for – much of it to Blog and Vlog – but not all of it.

  1. I am paying WordPress for a domain and also for a Premium blog account so I have more design perks. I really like having my own domain.
  2. I’m paying for premium Evernote as I wanted more storage
  3. I’m paying for Epidemic Sound to have those good tunes you and I both love so much for the audio.
  4. I’m paying for the icloud to have more space to keep my photos and videos sync’d
  5. I’m paying for iTunes to be able to download any song I want – and to have the perks that come with that from iTunes. I love love love this.
  6. I’m paying audible.

I think that is it. Other than having all the annual security protection through Sophos and any Microsoft annual fees we have to be able to use Word and Excel, but I don’t think we have renewed that unless George did for his computer. I have bought some premium apps that are a one time fee though but most came from an iTune card as a gift. And these are the reasons that I have decided with the $ I’m spending to do this new hobby, to forego as many hair cuts and manicures as I can. Of course I’m working right now and have blow money each month to spend but I didn’t want to increase our expenses.

I’d love to be able to monetize the blog, vlog, at some point at least by retirement. That is the goal. The doubts creep in, but I’ll sure do my best to make it happen. By then we can travel a bit more and I’ll be able to do some travel videos.

I do think that as I sleep on all this – the blog and vlog eventually comes down to these things – don’t you think?

*Food/cuisine

*Wine/Beer

*Organizing/Decor

*Relaxing

*Travel

*Nashville

*App Reviews

*Self-Help

*DeStress

* God’s love.

*Some music selections

*Nutrition/Wellness (Lord help me).

So I was pleased to find the term “lifestyle blog or vlog” because it is. But it’s hard to put in words. That term is already out there. And I’ll tap into that. But the above is what I usually write about. I should add these to the mix:

*Complaining/Perfectionism

*Diverticulitis

I am just kidding. The blog has been a place I have parked frustrations and health issues. I will likely continue to discuss that on a limited basis as it is part of my life and what I write may help others. But as far as the Videos go. I’ve decided that I’m going to leave out most of the complaining and health issues. No one will want to watch that, lol. I will allow the obvious frustrations such as being without a washer or stranded with a flat tire for example, but it won’t be a place to vent about things I would normally vent here. I have to go a different avenue with the videos.

So I am happy to have ordered the equipment. One of the items was going to come in today and I told Amazon to deliver it during the week. I am giving them a break, lol. George will be here to get it anyway and I knew if it came in today I’d be wanting to play with it. So it’ll be next weekend’s project.

Oh, I was thinking that I would have a “filming day” all in one day for the section of the videos that “add value”. It makes me laugh when I say that. As it’s saying my life does not in itself add value to another being unless it gives them info they are looking for. But I get it. lol Not many is going to want to watch just for the lovely reason to get to watch the likes of myself, lol lol lol. But if I do a filming day and do several of these “Value” segments- (I can change shirts b/w each one, lol) – then I can crank the videos out faster. I already have enough info to do another video (I think) once I get these value things put together.

So what is it you guys want to know? lol. I have about 13 topics already! All have to do with those lifestyle categories up there and mainly with being organized.

Oh and I may end up using CANVA as a premium service but trying not to. I really really would like having that background removal thing. But for now I do the free version and just use “remove.bg” for the background removal. It’s an annoying extra step but much like layering a graphic, you can layer your videos. That is exactly what you are doing. You are layering text, graphics, and sound onto each clip segment. I thought I enjoyed making the graphics. I like this about as much as it being on steroids about 10X. lol

I know you can’t tell. And combining photos and videos and then the styles of videos and the A roll and the B rolls. Just loving it.

So back to my day yesterday. You know I get a bit side tracked talking about the video stuff. I hope I don’t bore you. As little time as I get to work on it, I probably repeat myself a lot b/c I keep it in my head til I get “said thing done” and then I can go on.

This week I told George he could add a guitar to the beach room because it was pretty and “the color” of the room.

It’s also above his office desk area. He was thrilled! So he hung that up recently. I was a little shocked at how much it stuck out from the wall and that grabs my attention when you enter the room. It is one of those things that “would break up your chii in a feng shui”. I am not a feng shui person in anyway as it relates to a religion of sorts or should I say lack thereof. But I do like the positive and negative energy concepts. And this breaks my chii a bit but not in a huge way. I decided to get over it as it’s Hubby’s house too.

It just catches my attention. I think a big pendulum is going to come my way and knock me over! lol lol lol But I’m happy for him. It’s cool there otherwise. Why did I think it was going sit plush against the wall? I have no idea. I guess I’m just not used to getting the side views fo the guitar. But it’s a lot of trouble to hang so I won’t complain. It’s only a second of “what is that?” and then I remember oh the guitar!

While I was eating cereal yesterday (for lunch) I watched the Italian Grandma make garlic/olive oil pasta.

Sidebar: I’ve been trying not to eat much in the mornings so I can get some hours between dinner and the next time I eat. I think it really helps my particular metabolism despite the fact that for years we’ve heard don’t skip breakfast. I lost my baby weight that way after I had Kate and so I’m trying it again. But I eat well at dinner time. So why not let that carry me over!

So back to the Italian Grandma on YouTube…she was precious.

I will have to try this and think that it would make an excellent side dish. I DO like my protein though.

I also set a “menu” of sorts to the chalk board in the kitchen. I put up there my preferences sometimes. George seems to like to hear what I’m in the mood for. On the right hand side are just some ideas of things based on what we have in the freezer. We have a lot of pork, beef, and some chicken and some fish.

While cleaning house I listened to these playlists/artists on the Epedemic Sound: Accoustic Channel. They have several Channels. I subscribed to all of them and I enjoy playing whatever I’m in the mood for. Love the Accoustic though. The below are videos within their channel.

I love Cody Francis’ songs. He is soothing but with a nice feel and a good beat to it. I’ve heard his songs and his sound on many of the travel videos I watch. His music is also on Spotify and Apple.

I like listening to him and he’s a good one to listen to when I am working. I usually pick something soft and instrumental if doing payroll as I don’t want anything distracting. But this one is a good one and I’m thrilled to be able to play it while cleaning the house. Look him up and give him a play.

I was thrilled to get to watch the launch.

Then my SIL and BIL came over. This is George’s sister and her husband. Kevin fixed my iMac where it will stay on and not go back and forth on and off the internet. It was only like once a day it would do it, but it was annoying. He fixed it. I think. Hasn’t happened today. He said it was a common problem with iMac’s since a few years back – like 2017 or so. So he fixed it and also told me what to do (kinda) if it starts back up again. I say kinda b/c I will probably forget what he said. That’s on me. lol

We had lovely conversation and George made some Sangria Margaritas for us all.

And as what you saw on the video if you watched it – his awesome Poutine:

He fixes this in the airfryer. Waffle fries, cheese curds, diced red pepper, chives and I believe beef gravy which he bought in container – not made from scratch. My word it is so good.

So then we went to eat at LongHorn. I was kinda surprised that a lot of others also had that idea. We were told a 40 minute wait and to wait outside social distancing or in our cars. So we went to a nearby bookstore that had opened. I’m shocked at the fact a bookstore opened, but of course thrilled. I hardly see how they will pay the rent, but we’ll see.

We had time to get through the bookstore but they called as George was checking out. We rushed over and acted like we had just walked out of the parking lot but they probably wondered where we were and what took so long. lol

The service was VERY long. I’m not sure what time we got the table, but it was after 8 when we left. I think maybe two hours or so. It was ok as we had good conversation but they were struggling to keep up with the crowd. Tables for the most part were apart enough but not in all situations. They also had paper menus which could not be wiped off. We used hand sanitizer.

It is what it is. As we start to open back up and live our lives, we will probably all eventually get it. I’m not getting the vaccine. I’m sorry. Just not. After that last flu shot I had – and THAT SHAKE/SUPPLEMENT PRODUCTS I USE, were trying to rid those chemicals out of my body – it really impacted me for about two months. I had to stop the cleanse days b/c it was doing it’s job!!! lol As time passed I got better. But geez. There are too many things going into our medicines and vaccines and we find out later it causes cancer. I just have no trust anymore. It’s all based on history and how things have turned out.

So then we were thinking we would come home and watch a show til we got sleepy. And then this happened:

Sorry, not a good photo, lol. But rioters were in downtown Nashville and set the capital on fire. They went to Broadway and broke in and looted. They spray painted grafiti and just started trying to tear up the town.

I do like my Twitter for immediate news information -so I allow the alerts to come through.

I thought Nashvillians had lost their ever loving mind, but it was orchestrated by a certain group that also caused the disturbances across many cities yesterday in America. Many of the ones arrested have been white and were from the group ANTIFA.

Had to look it up and Wikipedia says:

The antifa movement in the United States is a militant, left-wing, anti-fascist political activist movement which comprises autonomous activist groups that aim to achieve their political objectives through the use of direct action rather than through policy reform. Activists engage in varied protest tactics, including digital activism, property damage, physical violence and harassment against those whom they identify as fascist, racist or on the far-right.

Whoever they are, they are certainly not an intelligent sort. lol A bunch of bullies on steroids and obviously bored of having any kind of real life with any value. That is my definition. lol. They are not even worthy of the Southern sarcastic “bless their hearts”. They are led by the devil himself and meet the direct definition of the opposite of God and goodness and his divine purpose of love and peace. So that being said, at least we know where their eternity lies (God’s judgment relevation – not mine) and one day they will not be able to “touch this”! (Go ahead sing it -MC Hammer’s finest.) One thing I love about being Christian is the fact I get to shed this kind of thing out of my future. Can I hear a holy hallelujah and a Amen?

Today I will do a devo – maybe something online – not sure. I have to go to the store and do some ironing. Redo my supplements for the day in their daily packs, lol. And then I’ll come play in the office in the afternoon and work on the blog. I want to see if I can get the “menu” items going. Kinda skeered. lol I don’t want to mess up the blog. But I’ll get a glass of wine and put on some iTunes and play. Once I get that done, I’ll try to figure out my missing files on iMovie. I love doing all this and trying to figure it out. Trying to enjoy the learning and not be frustrated by the brick walls that pop up as create my own damage as I touch anything before I get around these learning curves. Two steps forward and Six going back! lol!

Sorry for the long blog. I get to blog longer on the weekends. And more happens. Quite the Eventful day yesterday even though we mainly stayed home. Oh – and Long Horn did not have my Prime Rib dangit! Oh but I brought steak home as I had ribs and a sirloin and as a combo and I couldn’t eat my steak. I think I’ll eat it here in a few. Might break my “no breakfast routine” for that.

So what a day or two huh? Beautiful day though over all! Minus the goofballs that tried to tear up our town.

Ok over and out! What you doing today?