NaNoWriMo or National Novel Writing Month for those of you unfamiliar

Have you heard of National Novel Writing Month? Or NaNoWriMo for short? It’s where during the  month of November, you try to write 50,000, yes, that’s correct, 50,000 words in ONE MONTH. To keep you accountable, there is a website with writing buddies so you can see how you’re doing in relation to others. Nothing like a little competition to keep oneself motivated.

As many of you know I’m working on a book about green smoothies, Wicked Green Smoothies, of which the objective is trying to get most of us to simply eat another serving or two of fruit and veg. Well, what you may not know is that I’m also working on a novel, this one’s fiction, about ghosts. The idea’s been bouncing around in my head for a while and while I’ve started building the world, I’ve been a bit sidetracked lately.

Note: this is a very fun place to live and sometimes I forget there’s a real world out there, but I digress. So, I decided to sign up and declare my intent to reach the 50.000 milestone by the end of November. I am cheating a bit. To be an official winner, it has to be a brand new work no existing word count. My cheat, is I’m adding the 50,000 words onto the 30 some odd thousand words I already have. Hey whatever it takes to help get this finished, works for me. So I won’t submit for an “official” win – an informal one will do just fine as an additional 50,000 words will allow me to write “the end” – and then start revising, revising, revising..

Anyway, this is going to be the first book in a series so I better get cracking. I figured it would help keep me motivated and maybe feeling a bit competitive. Not to mention, when you speak your intent, the Universe listens and I hope conspires on my behalf.

Hey, I can use all the help I can get.

So stay tuned and I’ll follow-up with a status mid-month, and again at the end of the month with my final word count.

Cheers!

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What to do with pumpkin guts…

So you’ve carved your pumpkin into a very scary face and are wondering what to do with the “guts”?

How about roasted pumpkin seeds? They’re easy, good for you and super tasty

Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
Rinse the seeds in cold water, removing the gooky strings and seeds.
Spread the seeds in a single layer on an oiled baking sheet, stirring so they are coated (or use non-stick cooking spray)
Sprinkle with salt or other seasoning (try cinnamon or italian seasoning or garlic), bake at 325F until toasted – approx. 25 min., check them midway through and stir
cool and store in an airtight container – if you don’t eat them all right out of the oven!

Roasted Pumpkin
If you purchased a couple of those cute mini pumpkins, also called pie pumpkins, they are great roasted.
Cut in half and remove guts (roast those seeds, don’t waste them)
put 1/4 c. water in baking dish and place pumpkins cut side down
bake at 350F for 45-60 min. You’ll know they’re done when they are tender. you can tell by sticking them with a fork.
Add your favorite seasonings – butter, cinnamon, brown sugar or nothing at all.

Or make a delicious smoothie. You can use pumpkin pie filling if you don’t have any pumpkins lying around or don’t want to mess with cutting them up.

Pumpkin ‘licious
pinch of cinnamon
1/4 c. pumpkin pie filling (freeze it for a thicker smoothie)
1/2 c. almond or soy vanilla milk
2 tbsp vanilla yogurt
blend well. if you want to be decadent, crush up a few graham crackers and sprinkle on top.
P.S. feeling adventurous? add a couple of spinach leaves, up to a handful (you won’t even taste the spinach)

Happy Upcoming Halloween!

Fantasy place to live

I’ve been thinking about places it would be fun to live, assuming everything costs the same and of course fantasy is free, where is your ultimate place to live?

For me: a beautiful garden with different greenhouses (one for citrus, tropical, etc.) a place at the beach or some run down spooky castle in Europe in need of repair. Sigh, I think I’ll go think about more fun spots to live.

 

Happy Daydreaming!

Have you tried Eggplant lately?

Eggplant. Before you say “oh, no, way, gross”, hear me out. There’s a couple of ways to try this fruit (yes, it’s actually a fruit not a veggie) again that will have you googling eggplant recipes in no time.

For those of you who steer clear of anything resembling fruit or veggies; here are two ways to ease in. Not super crunchy granola healthy but, hey – it’s all about baby steps.

Pancake Eggplant (if you’re craving sweet)
Slice eggplant into thin slices, dip in pancake batter and fry – this could be a side dish or heck, eat a plateful for dinner.

Bread crumb Eggplant (if you’re craving savory)
Place small amount of oil in fry pan, slice eggplant into thin slices
Beat one egg and dip slices, then dip slices into panko breadcrumbs
and fry – again, great as a side or a meal.

Enjoy!

It’s good to be the King

Walking outside the other morning, I saw my cat climb up a tree (at first I thought it was the biggest squirrel I’d ever seen  until I realized it was him). From the tree he jumped on top of the neighbor’s fence and proceeded to survey his territory. Not to mention they have a dog he loves to torture by walking along the top of the fence.

We all survey our domain in some way shape or form. What do you do to feel like King for a Day?