October 19, 2017

What Is Your Ratio Of Happiness?

I realize that we all think about our happiness, but what if we counted the percentage of  time we weren’t. I have a formula that has always worked for me, remember, we are just pondering  my perspective.  I strive for 75% of the time… I must be happy. I allow 25% for all the crap that I cannot control. This is my way of keeping my life and the direction of my life in check. I always think about this every morning… Saying “Stephen, you have to find happiness in at least 75% of this day” And believe me it’s not always easy… sometimes I am left with nothing but to start the day all over again!  I am determined to live my best life. Making the effort to find happiness in my life is so important that I really don’t want to give up even 25%!  But, I realize that my life will never be perfect, so this is why 75% is so precious to me.

Think of your happiness in terms of a checkbook, if the balance falls too low, we take the necessary actions to correct  the balance, a transfer from savings, working overtime, etc. So… if your happiness falls too low, take the necessary action to correct your “balance.” Live your life in the black, not in the red! I mean set a realistic ratio for yourself and try to live it.

I know a lot of you may think this is just hogwash, but think about your happiness in terms of percentages. Putting a number on it will only inspire you to make the necessary changes.  Set a goal of happiness for yourself, and if you fall below that number, make the adjustments! After all it is your life, your happiness, and your checkbook!   Stephen Spurling

A Porch Is A Porch

        This house needed to be what I call “un-remodeled”. Years ago someone thought it would be a great idea to enclose the front porch…NOT! I think that a porch is a porch… and that thinking goes double if you live in the south! Just look at the curb appeal of this open front porch, and then look at the  picture of when it was enclosed!  I have never had so much fun subtracting heated square footage from a house! The hardest challenge of this improvement project was returning the interior brick back to its orignal color. When they enclosed it, they left the brick walls exposed on the inside room  and painted them white. I know your thinking I had the brick sandblasted, but I didn’t. I painted it with a like color matching the exterior brick. I used a paint sprayer and then a sponge with a slightly lighter color of the brick to match the existing brick. I of course had to build a corner support (column) and add a handrail.

Yes, these are drapes that you see hanging outside. Drapes on a porch create temporary privacy, intimacy and they just look great! Okay… a secret about the drapes… they are not drapes. I bought painters canvas drop cloths at Home Depot. They work great as they are made to be water-resistant and that helps to keep them from getting dirty and moldy. Besides they are cheaper than buying fabric at the fabric store. I think the pictures tells the whole story as to whether I did the right thing  on this “un-remodel” project… Stephen Spurling

 

Ninni Zucchini Recipe

I was never a fan zucchini, but Ninni Zucchini is excellent! You ask what is ninni zucchini? It is a great easy recipe to add pizzaz to your zucchini! To see the video with step by step instructions just click on the link below. Here’s the basics:

Boiling  4 to 6 med size zucchini for about 5 minutes, just making them a little soft. Then cut them in half and clean (hull) out the seeds. In a bowl mix 1 cup of Dukes Mayonnaise , 1 cup of feta cheese, 1/2 cup of shredded parmesan cheese, 1 tablespoon of garlic salt, and a tablespoon of basil. Take this well mixed filling and put it into the hull of the zucchini. then add extra parmesan cheese to the top of each and sprinkle more basil on too. As for me, I also add a little more pepper here too.  Then put them in the oven on 350′ for about 20 minutes. In the last 3 or 4 minutes you can turn the oven on broil, but watch very carefully… this trick makes the parmesan cheese on the top brown nicely. Your friends will love your ninni zucchini, and you will love me for sharing it with you! It’s one of my favorites, and remember I never liked zucchini until I had it cooked this way. Stephen

Get those tomatoes out of the window sill!!!

Wow! How many of us growing up and even for me, until today, thought sitting a tomato in the kitchen windowsill helped it to finish ripening? wrong!!! Tomatoes don’t need sun to finish ripening, they actually need the total opposite. Instead keep them in a dark pantry closet, or on the counter top or shelf, but cover them with several sheets of newspaper or a paper bag. Check them regularly as they will ripen fast, and by no means put them in the refrigerator even after they are ripe. Who wants a cold tomato, anyway? I learned this today and I would almost bet, the generation before me , aka,  my mother would have argued differently. Thought I should pass this on … so get those tomatoes out of the window sills!

“MY” Tomato Pie Recipe

This  all started as a joke, doing a video on making my tomato pie…and we did it! I  personally like the part of the video where I reach in the oven ” bare handed” and grab the hot pie crust. Hehe! Hence the reason I am a contractor, not a cook!  Here’s the recipe, and you gotta check out the video!

Two frozen pie crusts, 4 tomatos, one cup of Dukes mayo, one half cup of feta cheese, tablespoon of  Basil, teaspoon of garlic salt, several bags of shreadded cheese (mild and sharp cheddar), and one bag of mozzarella cheese. This is all the ingredients you will need, now click on the link below to watch the video on how to put it all together..