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Goodbye For Now…

I can’t apologize enough for my lack of posting and the “radio silence” that has become my blog. The truth of the matter is, I really haven’t felt like blogging and this medium has ceased to really be a part of my identity.

I want to write here, I really do. I want to share new recipes with you and share my creative writing pieces with you all. I miss interacting with you and I miss the camaraderie.

But I have to be honest with myself and honest with you.

I’m not sure blogging is for me anymore.

As of this moment, I am not going to delete my blog. I am going to leave it up for awhile and see if maybe at a later date, I will get that rush of the love of blogging and share a bit of my world with you. And feel free to peruse the blog for encouragement, funny stories or a good recipe!

But for now, I am going to say goodbye.

XO, Mackenzie

P.S. I am still hanging out on twitter and instagram, so come say hi :)

Stuffed Bell Peppers

Stuffed bell peppers are a great way to sneak in some extra veggies into the meal plan. I know not everyone is a fan of quinoa and even though that’s what the recipe initially called for, I substituted brown rice for the quinoa. Brown rice is less expensive and I don’t use quinoa often enough to justify the purchase.

If you are going to use brown rice instead like I did, just substitute the quinoa with 1 cup of cooked brown rice and continue with the rest of the directions.

Enjoy!

bellpeppers

Stuffed Bell Peppers

Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup quinoa, rinsed and drained
  • 6 bell peppers (red, green, yellow, doesn’t matter)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • ¾ cup diced carrots
  • ½ red onion, diced
  • 1 10-ounce package frozen spinach, thawed and drained
  • 1 15-ounce can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ cup grated part-skim mozzarella (I used cheddar because that’s what I had on hand)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350°. Boil 1 ¹/3 cups water in a saucepan; add quinoa. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes. Keep covered; set aside. Remove pepper tops, stems and seeds. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add peppers, boil for 5 minutes and drain. Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add carrots; cook for 3 minutes. Add onion; cook for 5 minutes more. Stir in spinach and beans. Remove from heat and mix in quinoa and chili powder.

Fill peppers with quinoa mixture and place upright in a baking dish. Sprinkle with cheese. Add just enough water to form a very thin layer in the bottom of the dish. Bake for 20 minutes or until tops are lightly browned. Serve immediately.

 

**Recipe adapted from SHAPE magazine

Guess what dear readers? I haven’t been inside a Target store a.k.a. the bulls-eye store in over 3 months!

*Cue the ticker tape parade and the celebrations!!*

I know, I know, it is absolutely physically impossible to stay away from that store, with everything all bright and shiny and begging you to take it home. But I did it.

I have not been inside a bulls-eye store since September.

How did I do it, you ask?

The answer to that question is two beautiful little words: Fred Meyer, a lovely wonderful store that they have here in Oregon.

Now before you think I substituted mindless shopping at one store for mindless shopping at another store, hear me out: I do not mindless shop at the Fred Meyer store. Not once have I ever mindless shopped at Fred Meyer.

See, when I would go to target to get toilet paper or cat litter or food items, other things would appear in my bright red shopping cart. Magazines and books would end up in my cart. Cute little $8 t-shirts would end up in my cart. And so on and so on. I’m sure you all can relate :)

Even after we moved to Oregon, the whole month of August was making back and forth trips to the store with the bright red shopping carts to get things we needed. After all, we moved up here with barely anything and things like shower curtains, were a necessity.

But in September, in that glorious month of September, my husband and I needed to get groceries and we were like, “Hey, let’s just go to Fred Meyer to get our stuff”.

And we’ve never looked back.

When I go to Fred Meyer, I get exactly what I am going there for. Do they have cutesy t-shirts and beautiful scarves and the newest best-selling books? Yup. Do they have oh-my-goodness-those-are-the-cutest-boots-I’ve-ever-seen boots at Fred Meyer? Yup, they have ’em and guess what? They haven’t ended up in my cart.

I  Fred Meyer, I really do. That store has everything, and I mean everything. But the mindless shopping just doesn’t happen here. The end caps of items calling my name like they do at the bulls-eye store…it just doesn’t phase me at Fred Meyer.

Maybe at Target we are blinded by the bright red shopping carts. Those bright red shopping carts that call our name begging us to fill them up with mindless junk.

I still have a soft spot in my heart for Target. After all, they’ve taken so much of my hard-earned cash, I could be a stock holder or something by now ;)

But I am glad for my pocket book, that I haven’t been in that store for months now. And it’s not to say that I will never go in that store again. But it has been a breath of fresh air to not be holding a Target receipt and shaking my head and grumbling under my breath.

Do you have a love/hate affair with the bulls-eye store? Are you hypnotized by the bright red shopping carts? :)

Holy guacamole! The Random Path is 3 years old! I can’t believe that this lil ‘ol blog that I started in December of 2011, is still my own and a space that I write and share

I admit that blogging hasn’t always been easy, and sometimes life gets hard and messy and that it doesn’t always allow time for getting behind that keyboard. But us bloggers, we persevere right? ;)

I have learned a lot about myself as a writer, and as a person. And this blog has also allowed me to make the online friends, my real-life friends, which is a huge plus!

Also a HUGE thank you to ALL of you dear readers of The Random Path. It means a lot that you want to read my words and want to share this space with me

And I must give a special thank you to Tonya, Anna, Shannon, and Tanya. You girls have been absolutely amazing in your support and friendship and I just wanted you to know that I truly appreciate it :)

XO,

Mackenzie

Ah, 2014… I’ve loved, I’ve read, I’ve wished some of the books I read, I had never picked up. But such is the life of a voracious reader; you win some, you lose some.

I surpassed last year’s goal of reading 36 books in a 12 month span.

66 BOOKS READ!!!! Woo hoo! :)

Most of my tastes in books lean towards mystery novels that take place during the 1920’s and 1930’s and absolutely anything to do with the First World War. Anything else that somehow made into my library bag, struck my fancy for some reason and I picked it up and started reading.

Here is what I have read for 2014:

  • Proof of Guilt by Charles Todd
  • The Everything Budgeting Book by Tere Stouffer

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  • No Graves As Yet by Anne Perry
  • Shoulder the Sky by Anne Perry
  • Angels in the Gloom by Anne Perry
  • Hunting Shadows by Charles Todd
  • Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle

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  • At Some Disputed Barricade by Anne Perry
  • We Shall Not Sleep by Anne Perry
  • Question of Honor by Charles Todd
  • Death at Wentwater Court by Carola Dunn
  • The Winter Garden Mystery by Carola Dunn
  • Requiem for a Mezzo by Carola Dunn
  • The Secret of Red Gate Farm by Carolyn Keene
  • Murder on the Flying Scotsman by Carola Dunn
  • Damsel in Distress by Carola Dunn
  • Dead in the Water by Carola Dunn
  • Selected Poems of Sylvia Plath written by Sylvia Plath

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  • Heirs of the Body by Carola Dunn
  • Styx and Stones by Carola Dunn
  • Rattle His Bones by Carola Dunn
  • To Davy Jones Below by Carola Dunn
  • The Case of the Murdered Muckraker by Carola Dunn
  • Mistletoe and Murder by Carola Dunn
  • The Clue in the Diary by Carolyn Keene
  • The Everything Guide to Gluten-Free Living by Jeanine Friegen
  • Nancy’s Mysterious Letter by Carolyn Keene
  • Catastrophe 1914: Europe Goes to War by Max Hastings

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  • Gluten-Free Girl by Shauna James Ahern
  • The Message in the Hollow Oak by Carolyn Keene
  • The Mystery of the Ivory Charm by Carolyn Keene
  • A Mourning Wedding by Carola Dunn
  • The Walnut Tree by Charles Todd
  • Fall of a Philanderer by Carola Dunn
  • Gunpowder Plot by Carola Dunn
  • Gooseberry Patch Halloween by Gooseberry Patch
  • July 1914: Countdown to War by Sean McMeekin
  • Black Ship by Carola Dunn
  • Valley of the Shadow by Carola Dunn
  • Cat’s Claw by Susan Wittig Albert
  • Sheer Folly by Carola Dunn
  • Among the Mad by Jacqueline Winspear
  • Elegy For Eddie by Jacqueline Winspear
  • The Thirteen Problems by Agatha Christie
  • Maisie Dobbs by Jacqueline Winspear
  • Birds of a Feather by Jacqueline Winspear
  • Pardonable Lies by Jacqueline Winspear
  • Messenger of Truth by Jacqueline Winspear
  • Living Well on a Shoestring by the editors of Yankee Magazine
  • An Incomplete Revenge by Jacqueline Winspear
  • The Mapping of Love and Death by Jacqueline Winspear
  • A New York Christmas by Anne Perry
  • An Unwilling Accomplice by Charles Todd
  • A Lesson in Secrets by Jacqueline Winspear
  • Death Come Quickly by Susan Wittig Albert
  • Leaving Everything Most Loved by Jacqueline Winspear
  • Balancing It All by Candace Cameron Bure
  • The Monogram Murders by Agatha Christie/Sophie Hannah
  • The Murder at the Vicarage by Agatha Christie
  • Nemesis by Agatha  Christie
  • Ramona the Brave by Beverly Cleary
  • Growing Up Duggar by Jana, Jill, Jessa & Jinger Duggar
  • The Care and Management of Lies by Jacqueline Winspear
  • An Expert in Murder by Nicola Upson
  • The Underdog and Other Stories by Agatha Christie
  • Only Yesterday: An Informal History of the 1920’s by Frederick Lewis Allen

There you have it! Bring on the 2015 books! :)

 

Christmas Wishes

Hello Everyone!

December sure flew by, didn’t it? Hope you all have finished your holiday shopping, and if not, well good luck at the malls and may patience be your best friend ;)

santa

Merry Christmas from The Random Path and may all of you have a blessed holiday!

peace ornament

XO,

Mackenzie

This Too Shall Pass

This too shall pass.

These four words. Simplistic yet their reverberations echo in my very soul. When life gets too heavy and I feel as if I am grasping at fragments of sanity, I remember that this moment will not last.

And it will pass.

I don’t remember the first time I heard the phrase but I know that sometime when I was a teenager and the chaos of my life was more that I could simply bear, these words became my mantra. When the machinations of people in my life conspired against me, I took a deep breath and prayed. And I told myself that this too shall pass.

As I became an adult and my soul was buried in another man’s emotional abuse, in his hand lay my heart, and the very life of me was shattering, I wondered why me…why was I suffering? When would I stop drowning and swim to the surface?

I held on. I prayed. I knew deep down, there would come a time, that this season of my life would pass.

And it did.

When the throes of my depression threatened to swallow me whole, it was all I could do to put one foot in front of the other. Spaces of time seemed endless and the only thing I could do was hold onto my faith.

The darkness, this too shall pass.

Some days will be bright and the sun will shine on my face, the grass will grow beneath my feet.

But on the days when there is no light, when the clouds of my despair threaten to rain down on my head like a storm, I remember those words…

This too shall pass.

This. Too. Shall. Pass.

Linking up with:

Mama's Losin' It

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