Simply the Simmonds Life

family, life and love on the lake

He’s Got the Working Man Blues October 30, 2011

Filed under: Life's Musings — Angie S. @ 7:56 pm

Zachary got his first job last week. It was the craziest thing…We stopped at Super One to drop off his application (the first one he had ever filled out) and 5 minutes later and runs out to the car grinning. “I got hired!” What?

Yep, he was pretty proud of himself getting hired right on the spot like that. He started the next day. I had to laugh because when I picked up and he got in the car do you know what the first thing he said was? Not I’m tired, or I work tomorrow, or my first day was fun. No, it was “Jeez! Food is expensive! I bought a roast beef sandwich for supper tonight and it cost $2.99!” I had to laugh at that one!


Freezer Cooking Day #2

Filed under: Life's Musings — Angie S. @ 7:30 pm

A couple of months ago I spent a morning doing some freezer cooking.  I had read online about people spending a day cooking up a storm and having this food in their freezer to pull out when they don’t have time to cook.  I thought I would try my hand at it.  I enjoyed my first Freezer Cooking Foray and after finally using everything from the freezer I decided to do it again.  This time I was much more ambitious (and much more tired when I was done,)

This is what I accomplished this time:

Chicken Rice Soup Mix, Jambalaya Mix, Meatloaf, Corned Beef Casserole, Cheesy Hamburger Hashbrown Hotdish


In this picture you can see Porcupine Meatballs, two batches of Spam Spread, Stuffed Peppers filling, Beef & Cheese Tortilla Casserole, Lasagna, and Overnight Egg Bake as well as 2 lbs. crumbled sausage which is not in this picture. 

I still have a few things to cook.  I had forgotten to pick up my crockpot at the church so I didn’t get my chicken breasts cooked so I could make my Cheesy Chicken Casserole, Chicken Nacho filling, or Chicken Booyah soup.  And I had forgotten to take the pork tenderloins out of the freezer so I could make Teriyaki pork, and I didn’t get the waffles made, but all in all I think I accomplished a lot!


Highlight Reel October 22nd-28th, 2011

Filed under: Life's Musings — Angie S. @ 6:55 pm

Saturday-Zach and I went into town to help Mom & Dad move some of Papa’s furniture and things out of the apartment.  Then I went home to watch the Wild game.

Sunday- Jeff watched the Vikings game while Zach and I read.  It was nice to relax for a while.  For the rest of the evening Zach worked on his Railroading Merit Badge.

Monday-I picked up Zach from school and we went to Super One to drop off a job application.  He got hired on the spot.  We had to run to Walmart quickly to buy a white shirt, black pants and a tie since that was the dress code.  Then we met at 5:30 with the Boy Scouts to carpool to Crosslake where we spent time at the Northern Trackers Railroad Club’s Museum.  To see more about it, click here.

Tuesday-  Gracie and Monica came out after work and we had tacos for supper before Monica left for RCIA classes.  I read The Hungry, Hungry, Caterpillar so many times that I finally bundled Gracie up and we headed for the library to check out some different books.  When Monica got out of class she took Gracie home and I went to pick up Zach from his first day on the job.

Wednesday-  Zach, Dad and I went to confirmation tonight.  About once a month the church holds a large group confirmation meeting that is supposed to be attended by a parent and the confirmation sponsor (who in this case is my Dad) 

Thursday-I rushed home from work to put together a hotdish for a funeral at the church the next day and then headed to church for my Bible Study.

Friday-  I got up early to bring my crockpot of hotdish to the church for the funeral and after work I picked Zach up, took him to work and went home to pack for our overnighter at Miller Castle.  When Zach finished up with work, we headed to the castle.  For more on our Haunted Castle event for Boy Scouts, click here.



Mighty Eagles Halloween Party October 25, 2011

Filed under: Life's Musings — Angie S. @ 6:15 am

Last night the Mighty Eagles came over for our patrol night.  Once a month our patrol does something fun, just us, not the rest of the scouts.  Our patrol nights build friendships, teamwork and skills.  Our patrol leader brings up his idea of what we should do and the boys all decide if that’s okay or help to come up with alternate plans.  Josiah decided he wanted a Halloween party and the rest of the boys jumped all over that!

Planning the menu was so much fun.  We provided the BBQ worms, swamp water, human flesh appetizer (or appetite suppressant…yuck!), and the kitty litter cake.  The others each brought scary foods as well.  Josiah brought bloody eyeballs and maggots and Andrew and Austin brought Jello eyes.

Then the games begun.  Josiah brought mini pumpkins for a carving contest.  It’s definitely more challenging carving a small one!  I pinned names of Halloween monsters on the back of the boys shirst and they had to ask questions to figure out who they were.  Then we did the mummy wrap where they had to see who could wrap the other person with toilet paper the fastest.  We had more games set up in the garage (witches hat ring toss, boulder bowling…etc.) and then the adults sat around the campfire while the boys played sardines in the dark yard.  As always we had a great time!



Highlight Reel October 15th-21st, 2011 October 22, 2011

Filed under: Life's Musings — Angie S. @ 9:34 am

Saturday- was running errands day.  We visited Papa in the nursing home for a while then drove around town picking up job applications for Zach, looked for Halloween decorations for our Halloween party Friday, got groceries, got my haircut and went home.  I continued to read my very awesome book that I can’t wait to post about while Jeff and Zach went out to cut wood.  After BBQ ribs, baked potatoes and green beans for supper, the guys went down to the river for a little “fishin’ in the dark” and I am currently watching the Wild and enjoying their 2-1 lead over the Detroit Red Wings!

Sunday-was kind of a quiet day.  I missed my Gracie because she wasn’t able to come today.  After Mass I taught a class at the church on Halloween because Deacon Marks had to unexpectedly do the homily in town .  We went out for the breakfast at the buffet at Saint and then home.  I went to bed (having a bad day hormonally) while Jeff and Zach went to cut wood.  When they came home they split the wood and I stacked it.  We should have enough wood for the firepit to last us the winter.

Monday- For Scouts we went to Parker Castle for the Halloween Haunted Dungeon Meeting.  Next weekend we will be sleeping in the dungeon and setting up the Haunted House portion of it for the big Cub Scout Day at Parker.  They have 250 Cub Scouts and parents registered so it should be a big day!  Last year I was the person in the dungeon who was the “screamer.”  I had no voice left the next day (and my family rejoiced!) let’s see how I do this year!

Tuesday- I babysat Gracie while Monica went to her RCIA classes.  She helped me cook supper, we watched Dora, and she got to tease Jeff all night long.  She loves calling him names like turkey butt and frog lips!

Wednesday- Zach didn’t have confirmation tonight so it was a free night!  We went to town to do a mystery shop job.  I am employed by a company that asks for secret shoppers in this area.  I have done Applebees, Erbert & Gerberts, Buffalo Wild Wings, Tanner Motors and others.  It’s kind of fun and easy pay for the few minutes it takes to get the job done.

Thursday- I went to Bible Study.  Our lesson this week was on Revelation 6-7 and the opening of the Seven Seals.  Interesting stuff!

Friday- We had our Boy Scout Patrol Halloween Party.  A separate post on this will be coming soon.  It was frighteningly fun!


Kiva Loan #6! October 16, 2011

Filed under: Life's Musings — Angie S. @ 8:01 pm

I am so excited to have just made another loan to Kiva.  Ny, the last woman entrepreneur I loaned to is doing so well with her business she has paid off her loan 10 months early!  This means I am able to relend the money she has repaid.  After much searching, I have decided to lend money to Digna Esperanza of El Salvador.

Digna lives with her husband and three sons aged 14, 18, and 21. She works selling tamales made with chicken and beans which, together with her sons, she sells from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily in the market.

She needs the loan to buy supplies for making the tamales: corn, beans, firewood, chicken and other ingredients. This will help her to have more customers and more income for her family.

Digna’s dream is for her children to study, and to see them progress so that in the future they can find good employment, and to help with the household expenses.

Please consider making your own Kiva loan.  With as little as $25, you can join with other lenders to help improve the life of someone who is looking for a hand up, not a hand out.  Once your loan is repaid, you can relend to someone else or ask for the $25 to be repaid back to you.  You’re not out any money, so why not give it a try?  Kiva is a very reputable foundation that I have had the pleasure of working with since 2007.   If you find it in your heart to help, go to and make your loan today.


Highlight Reel October 8th-14th October 15, 2011

Filed under: Life's Musings — Angie S. @ 8:13 pm

Saturday-  We picked up the Scouting for Food bags we had dropped off last Monday.  Every year people give less and less.  It’s really frustrating to spend hours driving around dropping off bags at house after house, and pick up less than the back of my Trailblazer can hold.  I guess something  is better than nothing…but still!

Sunday-  Monica and Gracie came to church with us then they spent the day with us.  We went to the Belle Prairie park and Gracie played on the playground and we even stopped for a Dairy Queen on the way home.

Monday- Scouts tonight was mainly a game, patrol meetings and more workig on rank advancements for our November Court of Honor.

Tuesday- Book Club Classic Hat night

Wednesday- Lasagna for supper, Confirmation afterwards

Thursday- Bible Study and everyone showed up plus two extra.  We had to set up another table!  God is great indeed

Friday- another exciting night in the Simmonds household.  Jeff & Zach watched TV, I got into an awesome book and before you knew it, it was lights out by 9pm!  My sleep schedule has been screwed up this week.  I’ve been waking up between 3 and 4 am and then I’m so tired I’ve been going to bed before 10 pm.  I’m determined Saturday to stay up so late that there’s no way my internal clock will wake me up at 3am!