The weather.....has been beautiful and much more comfortable over the past couple of days. This week, for the most part, it will be in the 40s. Perfect weather after a cold winter!
The weather was so nice that we took the dogs for a walk.
There are ponds on either side of the road that
they are looking at while we stopped for a bit.
Right now I am....looking forward to going to the chiropractor later this morning. Am still having pain under my right shoulder blade that sometimes goes down my arm. Am thinking it's a pinched nerve. Am hoping that the chiropractor can relieve some of the pain.
Thinking....about the DNA results we received yesterday for Olivia. Being adopted, we didn't have any information about her birth parents.
Olivia is on the left and Sophia is on the right.
So, doing the 23andMe test and then uploading the results to WeGene (which analyzes DNA data for those from an Asian background) resulted in these results:
Olivia is 98.35% Chinese. This represents:
- 43.61% Northern Han Chinese
- 33.40% Southern Han Chinese
- 10.53% Mongolian
- 4.50% Gaoshan
- 4.33% Dai
- 1.17% Lahu
- 0.77% She
The Chinese Han people are the largest ethnic group in both China and worldwide. The other 5 groups are ethnic minorities. There are 56 ethnic minorities in China.
The rest of Olivia's background is:
1.38% Southeast Asian. This is represented by the Kinh ethnic group of Vietnam. The Kinh is the main ethnic group in Vietnam, accounting for 86.2% of national population.
0.23% Oceanian. This is represented by the Papuan people of Papua, New Guinea.
<0.1% Yakut. The Yakuts are the indigenous people of the Republic of Sakha in the northeast of Siberia, Russia.
Black bear that we saw - September 9, 2011.
Learned that "Approximately 3,000 black bears inhabited Massachusetts before European colonization. By 1900, that number had been reduced to fewer than 100. Today, the bear population has reached 3,000 again and is increasing by 8-10% each year."
On my TV.....I'm finding that I'm enjoying some of the old shows that I used to watch as a kid. There's some stations I get on my t.v. that isn't hooked up to cable that have shows from the 1970s and 1980s. A lot of the current shows on t.v. are so violent so I don't watch them.
Favorite blog post last week (mine or other)....White House Black Shutters is the blog that I found out a couple of years ago when I was decluttering. It has a 40 Bags in 40 Days challenge that coincides with Lent. This year, I'm going to be doing the challenge again. There's a Facebook page that some people sign up for and post their before and after shots. It's very inspiring to see the difference between the two photos.
Something fun to share....last week I found out about a clothing company through someone's blog that I really like: Gudrun. I'm wanting to update my wardrobe, and this may be the style I'm after.
Blog hopping (newly discovered blog)....I've been trying to find blogs that feature Japanese crafting, embroidery, bento boxes, fashion, and recipes. A lot of blogs have been started and abandoned that focus on some of these topics. Found The Angry Chicken that looks like it will be interesting to explore. There are some entries that focus on Japanese craft books.
In the process of blog hopping, I came across a Japanese store that ships items: UGUISU.
On the menu for this week....I've been trying some new recipes this year which has been fun. This week it is a combination of new recipes and ones I've made before.
Not all the meals are listed - only the ones that I'm making things from scratch. For many meals, we have leftovers since the quantity of the recipes is more than we can consume in one sitting.
Monday - Dinner will be pork roast in the slow cooker with potatoes and carrots.
Tuesday (Valentine's Day) - Fruit Kabobs (with the fruit cut in heart shapes) along with glazed donuts and blueberry muffins for breakfast. There will be a special treat for dessert for lunch (blondies with red, pink, and white M&Ms). Dinner will be lasagna (my mom's recipe) and cheese bread (new recipe).
Sophia is making the dessert. Not sure what she'll be making. She loves to cook and, at 16 years old, very talented in her culinary skills.
Wednesday - For breakfast, there will be Frozen Fruit Cups (with bananas, strawberry yogurt, frozen strawberries, and pineapple); and Overnight Coffee Cake. For lunch, we'll be having Vietnamese Vegetable Pinwheels.
Thursday - For dinner, I'll either make Tilapia with Lemony Herb Salad or Crispy Fish Sticks.
Friday - For lunch, we'll be having Vegetable Hummus Tortilla Wraps.
Saturday - For dinner, we'll have Slow Cooker Spaghetti and Meatballs. For dessert, I'll make Rocky Road Crescent Bars.
Sunday - For the main meal (mid-afternoon), we'll have Beef Barley Soup. Olivia will be making homemade bread from her Five in a Row Cookbook, so we'll have that right out of the oven with butter.
On my to do list....in addition to homeschooling, these are some of the things that I'll be doing this week:
Monday - allergy shot appointment (Sophia), chiropractor appointments (Sophia and me). Remember Casey (one of my favorite dogs) who died in 2013.
Casey in April 2007 in the backyard.
Tuesday - homeschool co-op, harp lessons (Sophia). Celebrate Valentine's Day. Remember my Grandpa on my Dad's side who died on this Valentine's Day in 1983.
Wednesday - paint the blue/purple bedroom in areas where the plaster was patched.
Thursday - go to Feed My Starving Children with our 4-H club and pack meals.
Friday - help my sister go through my parents' photo albums and remove the photos that we want to keep and divide amongst her family, my brother's family, and my family. Will be there for about four hours. Hope to get a lot done.
Saturday - go through my boxes of photos and discard the ones I no longer want; and label and keep the ones I do.
Sunday - do the training session for volunteering at Northwoods Humane Society with cats. (Sophia and I already did the training session for working with the dogs this past weekend.)
In the craft basket....I want to work on the sensory quilts for the nursing home. My goal is to do at least a half a dozen this year for the seniors who have dementia or Alzheimer's Disease. I have many of the components already cut. It's just a matter of putting the quilts together in a way that will be engaging for the seniors and pleasing for them to look at when they have them on their laps.
Example of what I want to make for the seniors.
Also want to make a pre-printed Christmas table runner and two pot holders. Both of these projects are on my to-do list for this month. I'm marking things off my UFO (Un-Finished Object) list and getting items ready for the county fair this summer.
Looking forward to this week....going through photos with my sister. It will be a bittersweet experience because our parents are no longer with us.
My parents with Olivia and Sophia at the county fair in July 2008.
Olivia was 5 and Sophia was 7 years old.
However, some of the photos will remind of us of times we spent together while others will be ones that give us a glimpse into our parents' lives when we were adults and they were able to travel and do more things together as a couple.
Looking around the house....there are areas that I want to clean, repair, and/or declutter. My goal is to thoroughly go through each part of the home by the end of this year. Hopefully, in that process, things will be more streamlined and easier to find.
From the camera....Sophia and I were driving back from our volunteer training on Saturday when I saw a black blob in the ditch near the trees. I asked her what it was. "It's a beaver!!" Neither of us have ever seen a beaver ambling around in the wild.
Between that and the skunk that has taken up residence under the hobby shed, we've had an interesting glimpse into wildlife that we don't normally see. I don't have a picture of the skunk. We just know it's around because of its odor.
Happened to have my camera in hand as I was walking towards the stairs. Eenie was sitting on the cabinet.
During the past week, he and his sister (who has the same coloring, but different markings) have been sleeping on the same bed together. That's major progress for them. I think the addition of two dogs last month has shaken things up a bit..in a good way.
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