People of Walmart

I had a people of Walmart experience this weekend in Charleston, As for Charleston itself, we didn’t see much of it.  The weather was pretty terrible Sunday.  It was way too windy, cold and rainy to do anything outside.   We did, however, have a most interesting adventure at Wal-Mart. Elizabeth and I decided to stop there on the way back from our coffee run, so we could grab some essentials.  As we parked I was telling her why I always avoid Wal-Mart.


This trip did not disappoint.  As we were checking other, we heard a commotion behind us.  Two women were screaming at each other at the top of their lungs. I got the feeling that it was over a guy, but they were so hard to understand.  Finally, the lady in line called out her foe for getting a fight while working.  Yes, one of the combatants was a Wal-Mart employee.

Once the facts of her employment are brought up, the employee ran behind Elizabeth and to the front of the store.  The employee tore of her vest and threw it before coming back for the customer.  Meanwhile, she’s screaming that “she’s not employed no more.”  Concurrently, the floor manager was running full board, while screaming call 911, to grab the employee before she made it back to the customer.  Honestly, it was scary.  The two women were completely off their rocker.

Needless to say, I’ll not be going back to Walmart anytime soon.  Although to be fair, there were people begging at the entrance to Target.  I’ve never seen that before.  I also had a man come up to me at the hotel multiple times asking me where the mall was located.  Spoiler alert, the mall was visible from the hotel parking lot.  It was so weird.  You would think he would have found the mall in his own after the first day.  After my most recent people of Walmart experience this weekend, I won’t be stepping in that store anytime soon.

No Surprise

No surprise here, but Coach Q resigned his role as head coach of the Florida Panthers. The Panthers are off to their best start in years and could be a serious contender for the cup. Fortunately, for all that is wrong with the Panthers, the team made the right decision on Coach Q. To keep him behind the bench would have been a mistake of disastrous proportions. The Panthers, along with the league, would have lost all credibility.

I, like many hockey fans, are still reeling from what happened in Chicago. How many other cases has hockey covered up over the years? How many other recommendation letters have they written for monsters allowing to continue their predation on vulnerable athletes. To be clear, this isn’t just a hockey problem. It’s a sports problem from the lowest level of the game to the highest level of the game.

For years USA Hockey has required participating coaches, managers, officials and hockey directors to complete Safesport training. Moreover, USA hockey built a reporting system by which Safesport violations could be reported without fear of reprisal. Or at least that’s what they say. But here’s the deal. When you report a Safesport violation, USA Hockey assigns it back to the USA Hockey affiliate for investigation and disposition.

The setup is problematic for many reasons. Perhaps the biggest problem is the close relationships between those on the affiliate board making it impossible for impartiality and discretion. If you report a SafeSport violation report, your identity is supposed to remain anonymous. Unfortunately, the victim’s identity too often becomes public inowledge or worse they’re persecuted for reporting a violation.

This is a problem that we have to solve. The days off sweeping Safesport violations and sexual abuse under the wrong have got to be over. We can no longer tolerate winning at all costs, including ignoring serious allegations like Beach’s. Kyle Beach has bravely stepped forward to tell his story. However, there are probably thousands of athletes that continue to suffer in silence. Until something changes, it can come as no surprise that the abuse of athletes will continue. I love hockey and my Florida Panthers, but I want to watch them play with a clean conscious.

As for work, I had a long but productive week. Nonetheless, I am ready to go to bed early and catch up on some rest. The morning workouts continue to go well, but its tough to get out of bed. Tomorrow Goalielocks and I are heading to see Luke Combs in concert. Its going to be epic.

Save Big With Blue Apron

Folks you can save big with Blue Apron this weekend by clicking here:

Labor Day Flash Sale: Save $80 Over Your First 4 Boxes!

This weekend only you can save $80 over your first four boxes. We’ve been using both HelloFresh and Blue Apron. What I like about Blue Apron is the myriad of healthy options they provide. It’s very easy to find dishes that are calories smart, carb-conscious, or Whole30 compliant. I’ve found their recipes easy to follow and very tasty. The best part is that you can choose your meals from week to week. If you’re traveling or your refrigerator is full, you can opt to skip a week.

So try it out and save big with Blue Apron this weekend!

Black Friday Mayhem

A 5:00 am wake up call the day after Thanksgiving, usually means one thing: Black Friday mayhem, I mean shopping. In our family, however, it means an early hockey game at rink 50 minutes away. I always love getting up and getting to my destination before the sun rises. It saves me the trouble of putting on my sunglasses. But seriously, who the freak schedules bantams, I mean U14, for early morning games? Pretty sure we paid our dues here, but I digress.

For those of you out shopping in the mayhem, save us some coffee because this mama is gonna need an extra cup! We’ll be enjoying our Black Friday mayhem at the rink. Shoppers may the odds be in your favor!

TMinus Seven

It’s tminus seven until Jake, and my brother and his wife head to Scandinavia for an epic adventure.  Jake and I spent our morning picking up a few last-minute items from Kohl’s. It’s going to be in the 40s-50s, so a light jacket should suffice.  Since we live in Florida our fall wardrobe for Scandinavian weather isn’t quite up to par.

After Kohl’s we headed to Barnes and Noble.  I’ve been reading book after book as I work my way through the top 500 fiction and non-fiction books.  I’m currently reading One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez, but should finish it in the coming days.  It’s delightful this far, quite the departures from Tolstoy’s Resurrection.  I’d highly recommend both novels.  For the trip, I bought Stieg Larsson’s Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Since paperbacks were 3 for $30, I was seriously tempted to by several books.  I behaved and walked out with only two.

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In addition to Larsson’s novel, I picked up a book on Swedish grammar.  I love DuoLingo, but I needed to read through the grammatical rules.  Every night I try to spend at least 30 minutes practicing Swedish before reading for the last hour before bed.  I don’t expect to be fluent, but I hope to at least be able to communicate in Swedish while in Stockholm.  As an aside, there isn’t DuoLingo for Finnish or Finnish grammar books at our Barnes and Noble.    Please see video below for what I imagine I’ll sound like.

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I am super excited, not just for the trip, but for November’s Purple Stride.  This year I’m unable to run due to my left ankle, so I’m taking on a different role.  For this year’s event, I’m happy to announce that I am the Team Chair.  I’ll be in charge to driving team results and recruitment.  Those of you on the fence of joining team Deb Force Five – now it the time to join.   If you’re not in Florida that’s okay!  You can join us as a virtual strider.   Join by clicking here.  I’ll leave you with one of Freddy Mercury’s iconic live performances.  I, for one, cannot wait to see the Queen movie coming out next week.

 

Obsessed With Shipt

Confession time, I’m completely obsessed with Shipt. For the uninitiated, Shipt is the grocery delivery service owned by Target Corporation. When you sign up, you can shop at stores close to your work or home and have the groceries delivered.

The first time I used the service was the day we returned home from the Bahamas. I desperately needed to grocery shopping, but I had no energy to desire to make that Target run. Consequently, I placed an order through Shipt for a Publix run.

It was amazing. My shopper communicated with me whenever necessary. She wasn’t a faceless being on the other side of the app. In the case that an item was out of stock, she did a great job providing replacement options. The entire process was completely seamless.

Naturally, as I got into a rhythm with my housework, my desire to make a Target waned. Frankly, I can’t cope with the snowbirds. Consequently, I sent two separate orders one to Target and one to Publix. While the Shipt App may be slightly more expensive, it does prevent you from buying everything you see at Target. In the end, we got all of our groceries and never left the house. Moreover, I spent less money than I would had I actually gone to the store.

If you’d like to check it out, click here. I can’t recommend the service highly enough. For the hockey mom, busy family on the go, working people, Shipt is the perfect way to save time and get things done without missing a beat.

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Grocery Shopping

Since yesterday was a crazy day, I did grocery shopping today.  Fortunately or unfortunately, there’s a Super Target right by our house.  Today I was pretty disciplined in my shopping.  Consequently, we’ll say it’s fortunate we’re so close to Target.  Before I left for the store, I had my list ready, Cartwheel and my Ibotta ready to go.

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If you’re grocery shopping in S. Florida during snowbird season, you’re really taking your life and your heels into your own hands.  I can’t tell how many times they’ve run into the back of my cart.  Nor could I tell you how many times they’ve held up the line arguing over an expired coupon or a coupon for another store.  Thank God for earbuds!

Despite the list and the well intentioned planning, I inevitably forget 2-3 items on my list on the regular.  This week it seems that I got my entire list, but last week was an entirely different story.  Last week, I forgot bananas, sandwich bags and jelly.  Fortunately, we live close, so I returned Monday to get those items.  Well, except for the bananas because I forgot them again.  Perhaps I should try a mnemonic device instead since the grocery list strategy isn’t bullet proof.  On second thought, that probably won’t work either.

This week’s list was quite light  as the Mayor and Hubby are still in Georgia for hockey while Goalielocks and I will head to Boston Thursday.  Of course, I tried to buy enough stuff so the Hubby wouldn’t have to grocery shop in my absence.  After all, the last time he grocery shopped, we ended up with Spam sandwiches.  P.S.  Spam sandwiches are awful.  You may as well put a salt lick between pieces of bread.  P.S.S. the mnemonic device pictured below is a lie!

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It’s back to work tomorrow!  I know you’re as excited as I am about the return of Monday.  Believe it or not, I’m actually excited for tomorrow.  I cannot wait to see my Mayor and the Hubby.  It sounds like they’ve had an amazing trip.  The Mayor will be sure to share all his stories with me upon his return home and that will be incredible!

Tonight’s song performed by Goldfinger is “99 Red Balloons.”  Sorry – JS I couldn’t find a good English video of the original!

 

 

 

When I’m 64 – Happy Birthday Grandpa Tom!

Today we left Stavanger to head back to Oslo on Grandpa Tom’s 64th birthday!  This trip has been an unbelievably incredible opportunity to connect as a family and connect to our Norwegian heritage.  One thing my dad loves more than anything is his family especially his grandkids.  Of course, the kids love their Grandpa Tom to the moon and back.

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The picture above is of my parents at the BorgundStave Church, which connects to Husom via the Vindehellavegan part of the Kongevegan (King’s Road) that connected Oslo and Bergen.  My family and I made the hike, while my dad and brothers’ took the scenic drive to Husom.   It was marvelous to see my dad’s reaction to walking through his ancestral home.

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Aside from my Norwegian good looks and razor sharp wit, I got my love of music from my dad.  If you’re at their house ever, you know my dad loves his music and loves it super loud.   He’s a huge Beatles fan and truly was the only thing missing from our Paul McCartney concert experience.  His musical tastes run the gamut, but the Beatles are one of his absolute favorites and who can blame him.  Nobody could harmonize or envision the combination of chords to form the harmonies like Lennon and McCartney.    IMG_1701

In honor of my dad’s birthday, sing along to these fantastic hits from the Beatles.  Two are from the concert we attended and one is quick snipped from Youtube in honor of Grandpa Tom’s 64th birthday.

“When I get older losing my hair,
Many years from now.
Will you still be sending me a Valentine
Birthday greetings bottle of wine.

If I’d been out till quarter to three
Would you lock the door,
Will you still need me, will you still feed me,
When I’m sixty-four”

Birthday performed by Paul McCartney:

Ob-la-di Ob-la-da performed by Sir Paul

The Trouble With Travel

The trouble with travel is hockey is trying to maintain healthy eating habits when the majority of your weeknights are spent at the rink and your weekends are spent driving across the state to other rinks.  Hockey season doesn’t have to be a diet killer if you’re well prepared.  Just like you would take the time to prep our meals for the work week, you have to take the time to prep your snacks  and meals for the road.

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After hundreds of miles on the road, the ease and quickness of fast food is alluring.  If, however, you’ve planned ahead and prepped your snacks and meals for the road, it is easy to drive by or skip out on the fast food.  Removing the temptation and not wanting to waste food will go a long way to keeping you on the diet wagon.

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Here are some great ideas for healthy snacks and easy meals for the road.

  • Almonds
  • Peanuts
  • Stringed Cheese
  • Apples or apple slices
  • Peanut butter or almond butter
  • Oranges – clementine’s are perfect for road trips as they are very easy to peel
  • Berries
  • Grapes
  • Popcorn
  • Baby carrots
  • Protein Shakes
  • Protein bars
  • Granola bars
  • Yogurt
  • Hard boiled eggs
  • Celery sticks

If you carpool with other families, be sure your snacks align with any food allergies that may be present in your carpool group.

These snacks are easy, convenient, healthy and relatively inexpensive especially when compared to the cost of eating at a restaurant every trip.  For tips on how to indulge in an adult beverage or two without calling your waistline, see my tasty, but light on calories recommendations here.

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