In October I went into the city of Chicago for a business meeting with Moms.com and after the meeting we walked to Willis Tower. The photos below are of Chicago at night from Willis Tower. It was really cool.
Willis Tower, or the formerly known Sears Tower, the tallest building in the United States. Sears was actually the company that built it to house all its employees in one place.
The Sears Tower became Willis Tower when a London company rented out a large space in the building and had the option to rename the building in its contract. And that’s exactly what they did.
When you visit Willis Tower you get to watch a little movie on the history of the building before you are escorted up to the Skydeck. On the Skydeck you can walk around, shop for gifts, look through the telescopes and walk out onto the “ledge”. The Ledge is a glass box basically and when you step out into it you can look down at the city of Chicago through glass. I was not brave enough to walk out onto the ledge, minding heights as I do.
I definitely recommend you visit Willis Tower (formerly the Sears Tower) the next time you travel Chicago.
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By now you all know how much I struggle with any sort of diet to help me lose weight. Most of you know I have been trying the Liquid Amino Diet for the past few weeks. See my post on Liquid Amino Diet Part 1 here.
As a recap….
What is the Liquid Amino Diet?
Dr. Finsand developed the Amino Diet about 4 years ago after years of research and trials with his patients. The Liquid Amino diet is not about a quick fix, it is about a total and complete lifestyle change. The lifestyle change is accomplished through clean eating and ALL NATURAL homeopathic drops. Because of the healthy change in diet, you can expect to lose between .5-1 lb per day. Unlike other diets, the Amino Diet does not inject hormones for a total body shock, but instead focuses on teaching people how to eat clean without the shock of the system. This is one HUGE factor in keeping the weight off for extended periods of time.
Be sure to check out this video from a real Amino dieter who lost 85 pounds on the program.
Liquid Amino Diet Review and Giveaway
Taking the Liquid Amino Diet was a breeze. It has an odd flavor, yet it’s not unpleasant by any means. Letting it sit under my tongue was a breeze and I normally allowed it to go over 20 seconds. What I struggled with was remembering to take it 15 minutes before my meals. I also struggled with consistency.
In our busy household we do not like to make several meals for each of the three main meal times so I am very use to eating whatever the rest of the family eats. In terms of “dieting” I struggle with eating differently and what I’ll say to my children. If I say I am trying to eat healthier, that will leave them questioning if our family meals are truly healthy. 95-99% of our meals are made from scratch, made with mostly organic ingredients etc. With a houseful of growing children, we do eat a lot of carbs. Because of this I really did not experience the weight loss I could or perhaps should have. I do know that when I happened to take the Liquid Amino Diet supplement consistently at least once or twice a day it did seem to curb my appetite. That’s always a good thing, right?
I like the fact there is coaching available with the Liquid Amino Diet, but I only reached out to my “coach” a couple of times and when I did she did have encouraging things to say. I probably should have reached out a lot more, even on a daily basis to take full advantage of a “cheerleading” section. Who doesn’t want to do well when someone is quietly cheering you on in the sidelines?
I think anything is worth a try and for that reason I would say give the Liquid Amino Diet a try but be consistent and keep your calories within that 1500 range and see what happens to the extra weight you so desperately desire to lose. Add a little exercise and I bet you lose a few more pounds than you expected.
Me? I always have high hopes and high aspirations in anything but always seem to fail when it comes to weight loss.
Enter the giveaway below to win your own Liquid Amino Diet:
a Rafflecopter giveaway
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In light of Saturday’s Top Five Laughs post, thought I’d share this photo of Freckles at the beginning of her climb and Selene as she looks on because I think they look adorable!
Today the kittens were out in the snow for the first time and they batted at it! Sadly, I didn’t get a photo of it.
The kittens climbing all over the garage and my husband says they think it’s their own jungle gym and I tend to agree.
This week’s Wordless Wednesday is almost….wordless!
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Yogurt is a yummy, healthy snack. Creating yogurt recipes is pretty easy when you keep it simple and I like simple. One of my favorite snacks is yogurt and blueberries. To spice it up I like to top it with almonds and pecans. I love eating just plain frozen blueberries too.
I was playing around with taking photos of food and took one of my yogurt and blueberries. I thought it turned out decent enough to make into a blog post.
For my yogurt and blueberries snack, all I did is poured vanilla or French vanilla yogurt into a bowl, added frozen or fresh blueberries, topped it with sliced almonds and/or pecans. We do this a lot with any of our favorite fruit. You could do this with plain yogurt too.
We also like to make smoothies….at least until our blender broke. Sniff. Sniff. Still have to figure out which part I need to buy since the last time I purchased the wrong part.
Something we have not made since getting Miss Moo is homemade yogurt. Amazing, eh? Whenever I buy yogurt to have the starter it always gets eaten before we get to it.
Do you eat yogurt? Do you do anything “fancy” with it? Have any yogurt recipes to recommend or do you make homemade yogurt?
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This summer our egg business really took off. We could not keep up with the demand for our eggs, even at $5 and $6 a dozen. We allow our poultry to free range as well as feed them certified organic feed making our eggs a “premium” product. To accommodate the growth in our egg business we bought a couple of batches of 6 month old pullets from two other farms. Bad choice. We knew the risks but wanted our egg business to keep growing and not drop off. Our intentions were good but the result was fatal to our egg business, as well as our entire flock of poultry.
Our laying flock was healthy. There was nothing wrong with them. Then we started to notice sick chickens. The ones that were sick stopped laying. They showed signs of being lethargic, sleeping a lot, coughing, wheezing and like they had a cold in the eye. The pullets we bought obviously brought an illness to our healthy flock because this illness showed up within two weeks of bringing home the second flock of pullets. We were very concerned for the safety of our customers, our broilers and our turkeys. No vets in the area deal with chickens so we had to go to a university veterinary lab. The closest one to us is the University of Wisconsin. Two hours away – one way. We took the vets two live birds to help them make a diagnosis. Live birds allowed for fresh tissue analysis and a more accurate diagnosis. My husband made the trip on a Friday in September.
Within a few days we had our answer. Upper respiratory infection. Sometimes fatal, especially to broilers who have a smaller trachea (or esophagus) than laying hens. Good news? This infection is not harmful to humans. The eggs and meat could still be sold. Bad news? Even when the birds recover from the infection, they remain carriers of the infection and can spread it to any new birds we brought onto our farm. Results? We have to cull (kill) our whole flock of laying hens and turkeys. Even our breeding turkeys. Our turkeys never exhibited any signs of the infection but since they were exposed, they are carriers too.
We had sick chickens for about a month. The infection went through our flock quickly and usually lasted a few days. It was basically a “chicken cold”. Who would have thought, right? There was nothing we could do for them….other than separate the ones who were getting picked on. The vet told about an antibiotic but didn’t actually recommend it since the birds were now carriers.
This “chicken cold” has been devastating. Our egg business was to the point of buying all the feed for our animals, except our horse, dog and cats. We are hoping all our customers come back in the spring.
Our plan? We plan to start fresh with baby chicks in December and have eggs available in the spring.
We will buy more turkeys in the spring and choose some to keep for breeding purposes.
We will never, ever buy chickens from unknown farms again. And may this be a lesson for anyone considering purchasing chickens from another farm to add to your current flock…DON’T.
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Ok all you cat and kitty lovers….I couldn’t resist posting an all kitty post after the photo shoot we did for the SHEBA post yesterday. I just kept snapping and snapping hoping to get some good, non-blurry photos of them! They are at such an adorable age. I don’t get to observe them like the children do but I love it when the children come tell me stories of all the antics and things they are up to. Like tonight, my son came to tell me that Badger is sleeping inside one of my husband’s old ratty running shoes! Why wasn’t the old ratty shoe tossed when he got his new ones? Guess they were meant to be here for the kittens! Too bad the garage is so dark or else I would have taken a photo of the kitty in the shoe!
Freckles washing herself.
Sweet little kittens.
Severus is our Tom cat and you can see the resemblance between him and Badger, eh? Oh and Sevy is our only male cat now since all his kittens appear to be females!
Badger licking her lips.
Freckles sitting pretty.
Badger sitting pretty too.
Selene sitting pretty.
Amazing that I got a shot of each one of them sitting so nicely. Full bellies helped! So remember that as a photography tip! These are their six week old photos.
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Our version of fencing!
Fencing supplies from Premier One.
Hubby pounding t-posts.
Baby boy helping. Sorry the photo is blurry. I was disappointed when I went to download it.
End product – fenced in pasture for Miss Moo! And we need to move it again since she has just about sufficiently cut this pasture down. Since she respects the electric fencing, we only needed to put up one strand of fencing compared to three strands or 4-7 strands for escapee horses and goats!
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A couple weeks ago we had a visitor land on our car. It was a homing pigeon. It has a tag on his leg that one of my daughters looked up and determined it was a racing pigeon from Nebraska. It is very friendly and allows the children to handle it. It has taken up residence with our broilers, which concerns me because it is eating 18% grower feed. What if it gains so much weight it cannot fly? Is that even possible? If it’s too heavy, how will it fly back home to its owner? And why has it decided to “vacation” here? Lots of questions. The children are loving “their” new pet though.
What is a Homing Pigeon?
When I googled homing pigeon images not many of them were the color of “ours”.
According to HomingPigeon.com a homing pigeon is:
Homing Pigeon – Aves Columbiformes Columbidae Columba Livia
Sixteen ounces of muscle and feather, at times on the wing for twelve hours, flying at sustained speeds of 30 to 60 miles per hour.
To return home where a special relationship exists between man and bird.
Wikipedia states the sport of homing pigeons was established 3000 years ago. The American Racing Pigeon Union says that in the late 1800′s homing pigeons were imported from Europe. More information about American racing pigeons can be found on www.pigeon.org
I don’t claim to be a homing pigeon expert but I hope that wets your appetite to discover more about these charming birds.
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This is a photo of our farm at sunset when we got the hay field cut. The hay is all baled and stored except for the few bales that got rained on. We got pretty close to 600 bales of hay for our first cutting and that was just our share. We split it 50-50 with the farmer who cut, raked and baled it for us. No exchange of money, which we liked. Some hay guys will charge you a certain amount on top of each bale, even if they are getting 50 percent of the bales.
It was very hard to find someone to do our hay. Someone who said what they meant and meant what they said. Mr. L. came out to our farm to look at the hay field the same day we called him. He cared if the hay got wet or not, though we didn’t miss the rain altogether due to the amount of time it took for the hay to dry with the thicker weeds. We had a few hay guys give us the run around, didn’t come out when they said they would etc. We are very thankful to Mr. L. for doing our hay for us.
It was a lot of work to get the hay unloaded and into the barn. Our children now say they hate hay! lol! We kept asking them what are you going to do if we get another cutting? What are you going to do if we get three cuttings next year? Though some say three cuttings is rare, especially if you don’t have your own equipment, which we obviously do not.
Now that the hay is in we have fencing to work on. Thankfully it is suppose to be nice all week and not too too hot. 70′s and 80′s slowly moving back up to the 90′s again.
P.S. By way of a wee update….Mr. L. picked up his last two wagons today and told us he had to bring in someone to fix his baler but he wasn’t accusatory like it was our fault or anything. The guy that planted our field refused to hay it, #1 he was backed up with other haying jobs but #2 he said it was all weeds and there were too many rocks in the field. When we told Mr. L. this he was matter of fact, “Hay fields have rocks….” We feel bad his baler broke but blessed he didn’t blame us/our hay field.
He also told us our pasture grass is coming back nicely and we can probably look at a second cutting mid to late October! Hoorah! The kids are going to love us!
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Nope, it isn’t me that’s having a baby. It’s little Miss Moo! Well, hopefully. We had the vet (Dr. M) out on Saturday for a meet and greet. Kind of ridiculous but we have three vets, one for the horse, one for the cow and one for the cow and dog. Anyways, we’ll figure that all out later and hopefully narrow it down to one eventually! I wanted this vet to look at Miss Moo because we’ve been having a hard time putting weight on her. She came to us thin and while she’s gained some, she still isn’t where she should be and we’ve had a friend telling us she’s too thin and of course people driving by call Animal Control. So now I can say we’ve had her looked at by two vets who say while she’s a bit thin, she’s fine or she’s healthy and happy. Whew! That’s a load off my plate. Not only do I have children to worry about but now I have our animals! Oy, oy, oy!
A May Baby
This week the calendar indicated Miss Moo’s heat was due. We were kind of disappointed to find out that it takes a week to get bull semen straws for AI (artificial insemination). Then as “fate” would have it I get into a conversation on Facebook with Miss Moo’s second owner, who shared that she still had a straw left in Dr. M’s tank (they freeze bull semen and keep it in a freezer tank that he carries around) from the last time Miss Moo was bred and would I like to buy it!? I said sure, of course.
So when our daughter “B” told me yesterday that Miss Moo was showing signs of her heat cycle I put in a call to Dr. M. He came out yesterday afternoon checked her and confirmed she was in heat, he AI’d her with “Grumpy” a Guernsey bull that two of our cow friends have recommended.
If the AI “sticks” we will have a May baby calf! We are kind of hoping for a heifer calf (female) as Dr. M suggested thinking about replacing Miss Moo since it takes a couple of years. Miss Moo is such a sweet cow we’d love to have one of her heifers so that’s what we are praying for! We want to try raising beef sometime in the future too but have to finish our fencing, which is a whole ‘nother blog topic or two!
For now, I told my husband if I’m not having any more babies I’m going to be excited and plan for farm babies! He just kind of looked at me like I had horns growing out of my head. Nah, just kidding! He likes Miss Moo too.
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