Month

November 2015

Too Good To Be True: Loaded Baked Potato & Chicken Casserole

I have never really been too big on making casserole dishes, but this loaded baked potato and chicken casserole just… hits the spot. I don’t know how else to put that! It’s too good. I learned it through another pinner on Pinterest, and after adjusting the recipe a few times it’s more than amazingly good! So please, have fun and enjoy!!!!

I made this dish for two people, plus a bowl of leftovers. You can always add something to eat as a side of your choice!

Ingredients:

-2-3 Potatoes, peeled and diced
-3-4 boneless skinless chicken breast, diced
-Sour Cream
-Green Onions
-3-4 slices of bacon, cooked to crisp and crumbled
-Shredded Cheddar Cheese (How much cheese do you like personally?)
-Salt & Pepper or Adobo
-2-3 tablespoons of butter

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1.) Start preheating the oven to 350 degrees. I used a glass casserole dish, depending on how much food you have, use a dish size at your discretion. Lightly grease the dish, (I use Pam).

2.) First you will add the diced and peeled potatoes as the bottom layer. After season the chicken to taste and dicing it, you will add that as the second layer on top of the potatoes. When that’s done, dice the green onions and add those sparingly on top. After, add dots of butter all the way across. Finally, add a few teaspoons of sour cream spread across the dish (like in the picture above) and add a small layer of the shredded cheddar cheese along with the crumbled and cooled down bacon. IMG_33953.) Cover the casserole dish with aluminum foil, completely like in the picture above. Place it in the preheated over for 1 hour. At 1 hour, uncover and bake for another 20 minutes. After those 20 minutes are up, and a heavier layer of the shredded cheese and bake for a final 10-15 minutes or until melted.IMG_3399

4.) Tadaaaaaaa! You are all done and ready to serve. Enjoy

Netflix and Ch…..allenges

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Every now and then I run into some challenges. With Netflix anyway. I just don’t know what to watch. I hate it because then I’m sitting around for about 20 minutes just looking for what to watch next and I find myself saying, I’ve already seen everything on Netflix, oh my gosh. But!!!! I have a few binge worthy shows that I have personally watched and truly enjoyed that I am willing to share with you. I’m doing this because I’ve gotten a few messages from friends asking what I think they should watch a Netflix next. And we have all been at that crossroad haven’t we? It’s truly a challenging one, and we wouldn’t get through it without our friends! So feel empowered with this list!

So if you are in a Netflix Binge type mood, and you are having some challenges with what good shows to watch, here is a good list to get you going! (These are not in order by rating)

1.) Law & Order SVU

2.) Jane the Virgin

3.) One Tree Hill

4.) 90210

5.) Criminal Minds

6.) Reign

7.) How To Get Away With Murder

8.) Scandal

9.) Grey’s Anatomy

10.) Person of Interest

11.) Friends

12.) Gilmore Girls

13.) NCIS

14.) The 100

15.) Switched at Birth

16.) Prison Break

17.) Orange is the New Black

18.) Arroz

19.) Army Wives

20.) Beauty and the Beast

21.) Bones

Some of these shows take a few episodes to really get hooked onto it, but they are all definitely worth watching! So good luck, and tell me what you think about whichever ones you choose to binge on below!!!!!

Things they NEVER told you when you were joining the Navy

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Obviously, being in the military, I can’t speak for anyone else but myself (and my husband!). We are a dual military couple in the Navy. He is a PRP Master-at-Arms and I am an Aviation Technician. We both love being in. But we both also hate it at the same time. It’s a love hate relationship for the easiest most difficult job in the world. My thoughts in coming in were something like, “oh my gosh, my life is going to change, I’m going to travel the world, get away from home, save lives, do something cool, different, I’m going to be so bad ass!” But it’s not really always like that.

+There are long… and I mean loooong stretches of time where you are doing nothing. Literally absolutely nothing. They call it hurry up and wait. (Because that is exactly what you do, they make you hurry up so that you can wait around.)

+You have to arrive 15 minutes before the 15 minute arrival time. So lets say you have to be somewhere at 0630. Okay, so the actual time you have to be there is 0615 but you have to be there 15 minutes before the actual time to be there on time, so the time you need to be there is 0600 and not a minute later!

+When you go to boot camp, or on deployments, or to the boat, prepare yourself because you will see everybody’s booty. I mean all the people you live with during that time frame. You will shower with them, poop in front of them, pee next to them, sleep next to them. EVERYTHING. So when you are actually back home, you tend to be okay with having conversations with your friend or co-worker pooping in the next stall with you. Pump and dump breaks, that’s what those are called. So lets just forget privacy all together.

+Speaking of pee, prepare to pee in a cup and watch people pee in a cup. Urinalysis for drug testing is a virtue. HA.

+Don’t ever fall asleep around your people. Ever. Even if you hide from them, they will find you, and as much as you want to think they never would, they will pull some kind of crazy prank on you. It’s a given. Unavoidable.

+The amount of time you spend doing your actual job is 25%. The other 75% you are TAD (assigned to duty somewhere else) doing someone else’s job, doing duty section work (cleaning the same spot over and over and over…. and over, or standing watch). Or you are cranking (cleaning, painting, chipping paint, working in the kitchen, cleaning the officer’s quarters, etc), basically TAD but to somewhere terrible on the ship.

+If you just made a new and amazing friend, whoops! Say goodbye because they just orders across the world to Japan.

+Prepare for 60% of your co-workers to be divorcing when you get back from deployment. Half of their wives are already gone and they took all the furniture and all the money.

+Feeling sick? Whoops, you can’t just call off! You better go to medical (where they give you some ibuprofen and send you back to work for everything) and make sure you get an SIQ chit before we can let you go home. It’s too bad if sick call is closed and you can’t get an appointment til next week too.

+Oh you want to get braces? You need a day off? You want to take a college course? Want to buy a car? You need to get off an hour early on Wednesday because your wife is having surgery? You better write a request chit and make sure to ask 50 different people for permission! (Takes minimum 2 weeks to get approved 75% of the time).

+It’s thundering and storming next week? Oh let’s make sure we schedule our PRT’s for that week specifically then and everyone can get sick when they go run outside!

+It’s 10pm, and we need you to come in because you wrote the eval wrong and I’m really mad at you and it’s the end of the world so come in right now and fix this eval right now.

+Salute the officer… Officer stares away and walks in opposite direction as if he didn’t see you.

+Memorize instruction number 10384728574138473872398572458.01 because you need to know it when you are standing watch in case the CO asks you during inspection.

+Every base has a different name for the dependents. Dependapotomis. Whidbey Whales. Bangor Danger. Oh it goes on.

+Mil Spouses are EVIL. Most of them anyway. Some of them think they have RANK!!!!! So be aware! You wouldn’t want a Commander Dependa yelling at you when your standing in your garage next door.

+GMT this. GMT that. Prepare for training ALL the time. Long hours, of long long long talks.

+Structure and organization is key. SIKE! Chaos and disorder works better. “There is a method to the madness.”

+Prepare for long hours of no sleep, nothing, zip, nada. Good bye normal sleeping schedule forever!!!!

+Oh you just started working nights? Okay well come on lets move you on day shift again for a few weeks!

+Your mom and pops didn’t get gray hair til they were 50? Say hello to gray hair in your early 20s baby!

+Also say hello to random patches/circle where hair won’t grow on your head for like a month.

+We are not seals. Navy seals are amazing. Those guys go out there, and they’re just amazing. Don’t confuse us for them.

+The Navy wouldn’t run without us. Sometimes our jobs are very minuscule compared to others, but the job is important no matter what. Even if it is chipping paint!

+We are family. We love each other. We care about each other. You never let your brothers or sisters down.

+We spend holidays together. We’re all we got. We cook for each other, take care of each other. Watch out for each other.

+We save each others lives every single day. We make sure our mates aren’t doing silly things to risk their lives.

+We love fighting for this country. That’s why we do it.

+You see so many beautiful places, so many amazing things, even if you only go to that country and get drunk, at least you saw it!

+We love each other. At the end of the day, even after we bicker and fight, we care about each other. We go through the same things, we see all the ins and outs, and we know what it’s like.

+Although the job can be very stressful, working with a team, working with people that want to get the mission done helps you get through your day.

+If you don’t know what you are doing, someone else does and they can teach you. There is always someone that knows and someone that’s willing to help.

+Laughter is everything. You will laugh at one point or another because your shipmates will always be caught doing something weird or funny in those long stretches of boredom.

+Uniform pay every year? I think yes. (It’s like this mini bonus, LOL)

+If you take a picture of something funny enough, it might end up on “ShXt my LPO says”.

There are so many ups and downs with the military. So many things that make us angry, or happy, or sad. I have days where I hate it and can’t wait to separate and days where I love it and I’m excited to go to work. It’s all what you make of it. Things are changing all the time and in 10 years it might not be the same Navy. But we enjoy it while we can.

Broken hearts and all that stuff

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I remember the first time I had a broken heart. It felt like my heart dropped into my stomach, I couldn’t breathe, and everything was gray instead of black and white. I kept playing the same songs over and over again reminding myself of the silly boy that broke me in the first place so that I could keep crying about it. Almost like if I enjoyed the tragic feeling. I remember the very next day, I stayed in bed and my radio still had the same songs playing over and over and I continued to cry. I didn’t want food, I didn’t want to take a bath, I didn’t want to move. My friends came to visit me, they tried to talk to me, give me advice, tell me it would be okay, but I wasn’t hearing it. I didn’t care. Anything they said felt like a waste of time. I felt like I was worthless even. My boyfriend of just over a year had been unfaithful with one of my closest friends. So yes, I felt pretty worthless. I remember my sister bringing me a tub of chocolate ice cream and I remember putting the big spoon in my wide open crying mouth as I complained to her. Pathetic is what I felt.

But I also remember the day I got over it. I woke up, got out of bed and realized how stupid I was. I was so tired of laying there and just crying over a silly boy. Broken hearts are all the same almost. They’re broken, they feel pain, they hurt. Some more than others. Some sharper than others. I promise, that I know it’s the worst pain in the world. It’s the worst thing that is happening today and right now, and that is probably why you are reading this. But because you are reading this that means you are also one step ahead from yesterday. One step ahead from laying in bed, and mourning the pain. So here are somethings that helped me get past this heart break:

1.) I let myself cry. A lot, for a whole day. Because that’s what I wanted to do. Be that pathetic person that people tell you not to be. You need to let it out, you need to mourn. So cry, lay in bed, listen to that same song over and over again, don’t take a freaking shower if you don’t want to. Call in sick to work, or school. Do it. You need to. Tell yourself it’s your fault if that’s what you feel. (Yes, terrible I know). This process may take a day, or maybe even a few weeks. I’m not saying call out everyday but take a day or two to call out.

2.) Eat some ice cream. I’m telling you. The cold hits your brain, and it just numbs something inside. Imagine the ice cream making your heart cold like a rock. You need it to make your heart cold like a rock. Besides, it also gives you a reason to be unhealthy because you deserve it after what you just went through.

3.) If the ice cream made your heart get cold. That means you are angry. Anger is good. Because you are one step forward. Be angry. You deserve better. This isn’t your fault. You don’t need this. So go ahead, buy some plates, grab a few friends, and break them. Throw them as hard as you can and shatter those things. (Do this away from kids and wear some shoes). Break plates, cups, glass. (Not your favorite china though.) Go tear your room apart too while you are at it. (Don’t break anything in there though because then you have to buy and replace it and you will be even more upset). Get angry. You deserve it. It helps soothe the pain.

4.) Go pamper yourself. Get a massage. Get a mani, pedi, wax if you need it. Make yourself look good. Get a new hair cut. Do something different. And be HOT. Look HOT. Because you are HOT! This other person that hurt you, betrayed you, left you, will miss you. And it will feel so good. And go buy yourself some flowers! Love yourself. You deserve that chocolate. You deserve those flowers. Do it for you.

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5.) Clean your closet. Weird I know. But organize your closet. By color, by shoe type, by item. Start by taking everything out completely. Get rid of stuff you do not need. Get rid of stuff that you haven’t worn in forever. And put all the empty hangers together on one. Spray some air freshener in there as well and put some baby powder in those stinky shoes. When your done with that closet, maybe move on to the next. Like a storage closet or something. Organizing your closet is like a fresh breath of air. It reorganizes your heart as well. It works in funny ways.

6.) Take a hot shower in the morning. Shave. Brush your teeth. Eat breakfast. A good one. It’ll wash off all the bad things.

7.) Whenever you feel that pain, that hurt, take a deep breath and count too four. Tell yourself you are breathing in good things, good vibes. And then swallow and breath out and count to four again. Breath out all the bad things, all the pain, all the hurt, all the bad vibes.

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8.) Laugh. Youtube funny compilations and laugh. A lot because oh my goodness laughter is everything.

9.) Get a pet. My dog always senses when I’m sad. So a pet for comfort is always a great thing that helps. Replace the old with something new.

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10.) Look at a list of descriptive words so that you know exactly how you feel. When you see that word there’s something about it that is so… just relieving.

11.) Meet new people. No, not a rebound, that is not what I mean. But meet new people, make new friends. Meeting new people makes you want to have a good first impression, and makes you want to hang out and go out! It’s something new, different and it feels like an improvement. Your adding things to your life in places where you feel empty.

12.) Look in the mirror and tell yourself how great you are and smile at yourself. It’s weird and awkward but when you do it everyday you actually start to believe it. And you have to believe it because it’s true.

13.) Walk. A lot. Exercise hard and tough. Energize all your pain into that specific step, or that specific squat. It is so good for you. Hike and feel that reward when you get to the top of that mountain and see the beauty.

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14.) Talk about it. Write about it. It helps so much to just let it out. Don’t hold it all in. Talk to a someone. Go to a coffee shop, write it all down. Take a break from the real world.

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Heartbreak isn’t anything easy to go through. It’s tough, and it sucks. But until you can move on from it and feel stronger, and until that pain becomes less there are just so many things you can do to help. It might feel like the world is ending, and there are people around you moving forward like nothing happened but I promise it gets better. You will look back and realize how much stronger you are because of it.

XOXOXO