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Author Archives: Amy

Another successful NABLOPOMO! Not bad considering that I had company this weekend (BFM came to town for a quick visit!) and it was Thanksgiving- which can be a busy hectic time anyway.  Speaking of Thanksgiving- I hope everyone had a good one. So not only did we do the Thanksgiving weekend thing these are other things I accomplished this weekend:

  • I saw my nephew everyday this long weekend. (I had to show him off to BFM- whom of course he loved- especially her watch).
  • I donated three toys to Toys For Tots (a baby doll, a truck, and a baby playmat).  They were standing outside our local Toys R Us- and my mom wanted to go there because they had some toys on sale that my mom wanted to get the baby.  The Marines collecting the toys were very happy and shook my mom and my’s hands.  They both looked 12 to me. That made me feel old.
  • I finished my Christmas shopping for my nephew. I got ideas for most other people in my family…which means I am ahead of the game there.
  • I got my haircut and colored and I LOVE IT! I am all fresh again.
  • I ate at Olive Garden…where I haven’t eaten in like 5 or 6 years.
  • I completely finished my nephew’s blanket. I will take pictures and post later.
  • I started and am currently about 3/4ths done with a baby bonnet my mom asked me to make for a friend she works with.
  • I started TWILIGHT (yeah I know…late to the party). Like it so far.
  • I saw FOUR CHRISTMASES. Which I thought was hilarious. I like Vince Vaughn because he can be funny without being over the top.
  • And I posted this post-which means I posted at least one post every DAY this month. EVERY SINGLE DAY! Whoohoo.

Hair Appointment

Posted by Amy in General - (0 Comments)

Remember how I told you all that I loved my last hairdo? Well I am still loving it but it needs to be a tad freshed. So I am off to have that done today! I wanted to get it done before Thanksgiving but since I was stuck working the week before I never really had time to go.  This time I am going to get even more daring with my hairs.  This time I am going to tell my hairdresser (who never does my hair the same way twice I might add) that i want more of the dark layer to show through the highlighted layer. Wish me luck with that!!!

PastorDave presents us this weeks MI-5 questions of reflection:

1. What book do you most want to read before years end? Do I have to narrow it down to one? I have a whole stack of books sitting next to my bed just waiting for me to dive into them. I haven’t been reading much lately…I have been working on a blanket for my nephew.  But I guess that would be the one I am reading now: Sunday Money: A Hot Lap Around America with NASCAR by Jeff MacGregor.  Oh…and I want to read Twilight too…because I am so a teenager stuck inside an adult body sometimes.

2. What’s the most humanly impossible thing you would like to see happen soon? A fixed economy.

3. What’s the most important trip you want to take yet this year? I am pretty much done with the roadtripping for the year. I do most of that in the spring and summer.  Plus we are down to only 4 weeks left…surrounded by holidays…which means one thing. I have to work. Seriously I have to work all our open days around every holiday. It really sucks don’t even get me going on that subject…it is really kind of a sore one with me this year.

4. What habit would you most like to establish in 2009? An exercise habit. I am a lazy one.

5. What single thing that you plan to do this year will matter most in ten years? Spend time with my nephew. I love watching him grow and I really am striving to be that totally awesome aunt who does fun things with him (and any possible siblings he may have).

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And now the friday fill-in #100:

1. My stomach is full to the brim.
2. Turkey is what I ate the most of on Thursday.
3. The yard is still soaking wet from the rain.
4. In Las Vegas with BFM is where I’d rather be at any given time.
5. The smell of Canadian Mist and Pepsi reminds me of my grandpa.
6. Exercise is what I need right now!
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I’m looking forward to BFM’s arrival, tomorrow my plans include a haircut and Sunday, I want to start working on the bonnet I am crocheting by request!

So what do you do with an incredible amount of leftover turkey?  Unfortunately my brother and sister-in-law weren’t able to eat with us this year…so we have a ton of turkey left over…what are your favorite things to do with the left overs?

I am a big fan of the turkey sandwich myself.  I prefer it on white bread…just a little mayo, salt and pepper…and of course the left over turkey.  If I am feeling really creative sometimes I will make it into a grilled cheese and turkey sandwich (just follow your favorite grilled cheese recipe but throw on the turkey and add a little extra grilling time- delish!)  What I am not a fan of- turkey soup. My mom loves to make turkey soup (think chicken soup..only with turkey). Of course then again- I am not a big lover of soups in general so that shouldn’t be a surprise.

I also love the left over sweet potatoes…if we have them. Sometimes we don’t have the sweet potatoes and that always makes me sad since I am a big love of the sweet potatoes. I like them just baked like a baked potato.  But that sweet potato casserole? With the marshmalloes? I LOVE that stuff. Totally love it. However no one else around here does so I never get it.

So tell me…what are you doing with your left overs? What is your favorite leftover?

Thankful…

Posted by Amy in General - (1 Comments)

A lot of times I think we don’t take enough time to be thankful, even for the little things in our life that are good.  Today is Thanksgiving in the United States.  A time to be thankful and grateful for all that we have. Friends, family, health, are always the top on most people’s lists of things to be thankful for.  This year, more than ever, probaby a lot of people will add employment to that list. These are all things that I am thankful for.

I know my friends and family are there for me. And in my family I know I speak for everyone that we are all thankful for the continued health and growth of our newest member, my nephew. I know my friends are always going to be there for me…that is what makes them friends.  I am very thankful for my job…because that is what gives me the funds to do things I love to do like blog (yey I just renewed my domain through feb of 2012), spoil said nephew, go to NASCAR races and visit my friend (the list could go on and on and on).

However there are little things to be thankful for EVERY day- not just once a year. Over the past year I have really been trying to be thankful for everything.  I make sure to say Thank You for a job well done- whether I be thanking the student assistants who helped make my move so effortless or the person at the drive thru at McDonalds.  I can tell that sometimes it really surprises people when you thank them for something as small as setting up your phone or taking your starbucks order.  So..take a few extra minutes and thank that bagger who bagged your groceries or to the bank teller.  It might really make their day- and that will totally make yours.

Remind me next time I hold a little contest – to keep it shorter. It was torture for ME to wait this long to giveaway all the goodies.  This contest only had 4 entrants…so it was really hard for me not to just give everyone something.  Unfortunately I didn’t have a fourth prize to give!!! Anyway…here are the winners!!!

The two winners of the DALE Earnhardt DVDs are:

Cameron of Get The Stink Off

and

Trixie of Trixie’s Trailer Park

And the winner of the ST. Dale book:

Andrea of Serious Injury Inflicted.

Congrats to the winners. If you are on this winning list? I emailed you requested your mailing address so that I can mail you your prize! I will try to have these all mailed out no later than Monday if you give me your address before then

I am sure you all are just keeping constant track of my little blogroll over there aren’t you? If you are you may have noticed a new link popup for stewarthaasfan.com.  I just wanted to give that site a little plug.  SHF is the brainchild of Karah (Diary of a Track Bunny). Karah has put together a great site featuring news, interviews, multimedia, and all other information regarding Stewart-Haas Racing, Tony Stewart and Ryan Newman.  Basically- if it has to do with Stewart-Haas Racing (SHR), Tony Stewart or Ryan Newman- it’s on stewarthaasfan.com!  Not to mention the fact that it’s a great looking site. And yes…I am here not only as just a fan of the site- but Karah is letting yours truely contribute to SHF!

First just a reminder that tomorrow at NOON PACIFIC STANDARD TIME tomorrow November 26th, 2008 is the deadline for the date to enter the 3-Contest for your chance to win either a DVD of Dale Earnhardt’s Greatest Wins or the book St. Dale. I am going to do a quick drawing out of a hat of the names entered and then…I will notify the winners. Depending on response time from winners- prizes could be mailed out as early as Black Friday (11-28-2008).

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Now here is some great information for saving fuel in time for the Thanksgiving holiday!  Brought to us by non other than Kenny Francis- crew chief of the number 9 Budweiser Dodge of Kasey Kahne and Jason Efland, Kasey Kahne’s Allstate Agent.

(KF=Kenny Francis – No. 9 Crew Chief)
(JE= Jason Efland – Kasey Kahne’s Allstate Agent)

KF: Are there any specific car setup and driving strategies teams use to conserve fuel at the end of a race to avoid a pit stop? “The main way that a driver can conserve fuel during a race is to be smooth with the throttle when accelerating off each of the corners. Do not aggressively pump the throttle pedal. Also, lifting off the throttle early at the end of the straight will conserve a fair amount of fuel, but the lap times may be slower as a result.”

KF: How does the engineering and setup that you and your pit crew manipulate on the No. 9 Dodge have an effect on the amount of fuel used during a race? “Normally, a car that is loose will get better fuel mileage than a tight car because the driver has to be a little smoother with the throttle to keep from losing control. With a tight car, the car is harder to turn, so the driver will work the throttle more to give it the power to help turn the car which will hurt mileage.”

JF: What are some examples of safe driving techniques that motorists can use to save gas?

  • “Slow down. Aggressive driving wastes gas. Every 5 miles per hour that a person drives over 60 miles per hour is like paying an additional $0.26 per gallon for gas.” (fueleconomy.gov)
  • “Keep your car maintained and running smoothly with regular tune-ups and upkeep. Checking and replacing air filters can improve your car’s gas mileage by as much as 10 percent, and will help protect your engine. Keeping your tires properly inflated can improve your gas mileage by around 3.3 percent.” (fueleconomy.gov)
  • “Plan your routes. By planning your route in advance you can find the shortest distance making your commute quicker and cheaper.”
  • “Keep to the right. Often, the right-most lanes keep moving more than the left-most in areas prone to traffic-jams. This is usually due to cars exiting the highway on the right.”

KF: How many gallons of fuel does the No. 9 Dodge go through during a typical 400-mile race? “A typical Sprint Cup stock car has about 800 horsepower, weighs more than 3,000 pounds and goes from 0-60 in around three seconds, so you can imagine the fuel efficiency isn’t going to be as good as the cars you and I drive on the road. Typically, we can expect to get about four and half miles per gallon on a mile-and-a-half track, so we will use about 90 total gallons of fuel during the course of a 400-mile race.”

JF: Have you seen more of your customers turning to compact cars and hybrids that get better gas mileage? “I have seen a lot more customers looking at and purchasing compact cars over the past six months compared to years past. Hybrids are becoming popular but still seem to be more expensive compared to the same gasoline model and thus not as popular as compact cars. For 2009, automobiles that use clean-burning diesel are really taking the car market by storm. There are many cars just now arriving on lots that are getting 30-45 miles per gallon.”

JF: Have you seen a trend in people giving up traditional automobiles for motorcycles because of the rising fuel costs? “We have had a few, but most of them are buying motorcycles and scooters as secondary forms of transportation to save on fuel consumption and costs. The average motorcycle user reports fuel consumption of around 56 miles per gallon while the average automobile owner reports an average of 22 miles per gallon. This represents a lot of savings for motorcycle owners. But people still like having a car to drive when it is raining or cold outside.”

KF: Race cars don’t have fuel gauges. How do you calculate the fuel mileage for Kasey Kahne and the No. 9 Dodge during races? “Trying to calculate fuel mileage on a Sprint Cup car during a race certainly keeps our mathematical skills strong because we have to figure it out the old fashioned way. We count the number of laps we complete between pit stops and multiply by the track length. We weigh the fuel dump cans before and after a pit stop then divide that difference in weight by the fuel’s specific weight, typically 6.3 pounds per gallon. This way we know the distance and we know the amount of fuel used so we divide the distance by the gallons used to get the miles per gallon. Then we can multiply the miles per gallon by the fuel cell capacity and divide by the track length to calculate the number of laps we can run.”

JF: If a race car driver runs out of gas during a race someone can push the car to pit road to get refueled. What should a motorist do if they run out of fuel and aren’t close to a gas station? “If you run out of gas while driving, pull over to the side of the road. Make sure to turn on the car’s hazard lights to inform other motorists that you are having a problem. This is especially important if you run out of gas while driving at night. If you have access to road assistance such as Allstate Motor Club, give them a call and wait for the support car to arrive. If you do not have access to a road assistant service, call somebody you know, a friend or a family member.”

KF: On a mile-and-a-half track how many laps can Kasey Kahne get out of a full tank of gas during a green flag run? “Usually, the four and half miles per gallon give us about a 55-lap range with our 18.5 gallon fuel cell capacity. But obviously there are a lot of factors that can impact this, such as caution laps and whether the car is running in the middle of the pack in traffic or out in front in clean air.”

JE: Do you think people are driving less because of fuel costs? “Yes, I do. People are now starting to plan their trips and everyday errands more wisely. With fuel costs so low in the past we have not had to really think about where we drive each day, but now it makes a difference how many stops we make or if we want to go to a store on the other side of town versus a similar one nearby”

KF: How do the aerodynamics of a race car impact its fuel mileage? What specific features of the COT are designed to improve fuel mileage and how do these aerodynamic features differ from a regular passenger car? “A car with less aerodynamic drag will get better fuel mileage, but the aerodynamic drag on Sprint Cup cars is not adjustable so we really don’t consider it much with respect to fuel mileage. There are no specific features of the Car of Tomorrow that are designed to improve fuel mileage. The fuel cell is stronger, and has a slightly smaller capacity than the cars we were using before.”

JE: Which types of cars get the best gas mileage and what physical factors of a vehicle contribute to its ability to achieve more miles per gallon?

  • “Compact, mid-sized cars and station wagons are rated as the top fuel efficient vehicles by www.fueleconomy.gov.”
  • “When looking for new tires, look for tires that are designated to have Low Rolling Resistance. According to fuelly.com, these tires can help improve fuel economy by up to 2-4 percent.”
  • “Watch your RPMs. The gearing of your transmission determines how fast you travel at a certain RPM. So if you keep the RPMs low then you will use less fuel.” (www.fuelly.com)

KF: What are the worst mistakes a race car driver can make on the track to negatively impact fuel mileage? What’s the best thing a driver can do? “The worst thing a driver can do for fuel mileage is consistently pump the throttle. When this happens, unneeded fuel is sprayed into the engine with each pump of the accelerator. If the driver is smooth and gets the throttle down with a single motion only the fuel that is needed will be pumped into the engine and the car will get better fuel mileage.”

JE: What are examples of driving practices that drivers may not be aware of that can negatively impact the fuel mileage of their car?

  • “Revving the engine, accelerating quickly, traveling at high speeds”‘
  • “Stop-and-go traffic, crowded roads and looking for a parking space all burn fuel as well.”
  • “Stream line your car. Don’t fly flags and remove ski or bike racks after use. These items cause additional drag on your car.”
  • “Park in the shade. Gasoline evaporates out of your tank faster if you’re parked directly in the sun. If there is no shade available, park so your tank is facing away from direct sunlight.”
  • “Lighten up your load. Remove unnecessary items from the trunk of the car and don’t fill up the gas tank all the way. Depending on your tank size, your car will have 50-100 pounds less to haul all the time, which will equate to less gas used.”