Having Good Tools Matters

It’s official, I’ve about doubled my income in the last three months. Which sounds awesome because it is in fact exactly as awesome as you think it would be. There’s a sort of a surge of money this month as Amazon pays out the Kindle sales two months after the fact, so the first The Mindful Attraction Plan money arrived at the end of August and in September coaching has really caught fire and we’re looking at the second big Kindle check coming at the end of the month before it settles down to something closer to normal.

Suddenly I have more money than I’ve had my whole life.

We’ve done a lot of shopping, catching a bunch of stuff up too. New dryer, new dishwasher, the short vacation to do all the back to school shopping, a second back to school shopping thing that happened that I don’t exactly understand but whatever, a new vacuum cleaner, a giant wholesale run for mass quantities of munchies, a month supply of protein shakes of special magnificence for both of us and plants for the front yard.

The shopping for plants was kind of fun in that we did it at Lowes and I said I wanted to price out some other stuff for the end of the month. Namely a garage door opener to replace the one that’s been broken for mumble mumble mumble years and it’s pretty apparent that the washing machine is dying too. It’s one of those front loader ones and it’s started to drool a bit, so that needs to be replaced too. So picked them out for next week, then routed by the freezers because don’t ask me why, but a freezer filled with extra food just seems to be a symbol to me that you’ve finally arrived at domestic comfort. I have no clue why.

So Jenniferlocks started looking at the freezers. There was a little chest one that was just too small, barely enough room for half a dead body. Then there was a great big chest freezer one and it would have looked more in place on a fishing trawler. Then we saw one that was just right… medium sized and on sale. It was perfect. Jennifer relaxed, this was the one. Then we rounded the corner and came upon an upright freezer, twice as big as the medium sized chest freezer, with internal racks and crazy deep shelving built into the door…

Jennifer:  “That would make it easier to find things and arrange them.”

Athol:  “You wouldn’t be in danger of falling in either.”

(In my defense she is quite short and leaning in to grab frozen salmon from the bottom of a chest freezer could indeed result in slapstick comedy.)

Then she looked at the price. Normally she would have flinched and that would have been it.

Athol:  “I know we’re on an important mission to buy some crappy plants I don’t care about plants for the front of the house, but I’m coming back for this freezer.”

Jennifer: “This is so weird to have money.”

Athol:  “It’s not like we’re buying junk, the freezer is a tool. We’ll use it, you’ll end up getting all the money back and more because you can do better sale shopping.”

Then we got her a new laptop. At some point she’s just going to need one for the business and we went looking for one. She’s used to a 15″ screen size on her work one, but I said she should go bigger to the 17″. Rationale… it’s going to be her primary tool for working her side of the business. Having a 17″ screen is going to be far more user friendly than having a 15″ one. It’s a tool. Hell I would have said go to 19″, but again she’s tiny and at that point the keyboard starts spreading a little making it harder to type. It’s a good laptop. She’s thrilled by it.

The one thing I really splurged on for myself last year was a really good laptop. It’s not so much a beast of computing power, as sort of a plush and sinfully comfortable one to use. I paid far too much for it and it’s worth every penny. I’m a writer, it’s the only tool I use for my job. I love my laptop. It always makes me feel good to use it.

Then it becomes apparent that nearly everything big we’re buying are tools… the dryer, dishwasher, vacuum, laptop, garage door opener, freezer, washing machine. The rest is good food and replacement clothes. But the tools just keep jumping out at me.

Every broken tool you own is draining energy from your life. Having good tools saves you time and energy, plus if they are functional and beautiful, you can gain even more energy by feeling good about using the good tool.

So what are your tools? Are they broken? Can you fix them? What’s your dream tool?

 

Drinking From The Firehose

Okay. So. Catch up.

I really didn’t mean to have a two week break from the blog. It has been a struggle of sorts lately and life suddenly got busy, as in really really busy. Here’s the shopping list…

We had a vacation. Just a quick trip up into Massachusetts to an outlet mall for the Labor Day Weekend sale. We’d pretty much saved all the back to school shopping for then and got it done in a great frenzied heap. One wife, two daughters, sale weekend, shopping holiday for stuff we’d buy anyway. It’s genius. The girls just think staying in a hotel is the greatest thing ever, room service is the cherry on top.

As an aside I can’t spell Massachusetts. The spell checker couldn’t help ne either. It like knows all the words in English there are and it couldn’t even come out with a suggestion of what it thought I was trying to spell. I literally had to open a new browser tab and start typing out, “State of mass…” and let the Google auto-complete save me.

Less amazing, I had a fall. I’m not sure what age you have to be to cross the threshold from simply “falling over” to “having a fall”, but I think I might have passed it.

What happened was coming out of the hotel on our intended nice sunny day for the Southwick Zoo… it was pouring down. So I did my standard routine of telling the family to stick by the hotel lobby and I’d bring the car around. It was raining very hard, so I ran for it. I got about six feet into the run and my flip-flops hydroplaned and I not so much ran, as slid into home plate into concrete steps. My left foot turned over as my ankle smashed sickeningly with my full body weight behind it. The concrete was evidently really well made because it seemed quite unbothered by my attempt to break it.

In order to keep the dramatic tension I’ll change topics.

I’ve been telling about half my coaching clients that they really should be doing something fun in their life. It can’t be all nose to the grindstone without killing your energy and happiness levels. Except… well… I can’t remember the last time I was really having fun myself. It’s been a long road to here. I already had eleven coaching clients and it was going really well.

So I cracked open the World of Warcraft account again. I’ve been running heroics and the raid finder stuff, as opposed to joining a guild proper and turning it into a job. Yes I absolutely how geeky it is, I don’t care. Here’s how messed up it is. You have a character (a doll) and then you and your friends get together with their characters (their dolls) and using your characters (dolls) you form a group (a doll party) to run through an dungeon or high-level raid dungeon in the hope of winning fat loots to make your character more powerful (you get fancy clothes for your doll).

Anyway, it’s been fun. For those that care… my primary doll (character) is a Restoration Shaman and playing a lowbie or two to hang out with my eldest daughter who is an excellent healer.

Anyway….

ARGH! MY FOOT!

FUCK. I cannot have a broken foot now. There is just too much to get done. I don’t want to clomp around in a stupid boot for six-eight weeks.

Thankfully the pain is just seriously bad and slowly ebbing way. I can walk on it carefully, but I’ve seen foot injuries before and “but it doesn’t hurt that bad” doesn’t mean it isn’t broken somehow. After a while it’s not even bad enough to want a Tylenol or anything. But it’s still swollen and sore when I walk on it. So no walks, no exercise, no running in house, no anything without thinking 24/7 “I really hope it’s not broken”.

Anyway…

While I limp around like a dying swan, coaching explodes on me. I’ve gone from eleven clients to twenty-one… and I’ve decided my max is twenty-four. So if you heard “three slots left”, you heard right. I’m a introvert and while I love what I’m doing, it is me giving a lot of energy out. So there are just limits to what I can do. So three slots left for now and prices obviously have to step up a bit after that too. Woo-hoo!

Yay money. It’s been a long time coming and it’s a relief it’s finally here. It’s come with sense of peace too. I deserve it. It’s more like a thorn pulled from my side than anything else. That being said, I’m starting to really struggle with attention to the forum. The success to effort ratio with the 1:1 coaching is just burying my efforts on the forum. There’s been a ton of good forum story arcs, but every week there’s been more exciting stuff happening I can’t tell anyone about lol. I don’t spill *any* of that stuff for obvious reasons. It’s just going really fabulously well.

But… phew! There’s a lot of front-loading effort with the coaching.  Considering it’s a 12-week deal, for me about a third of the total effort comes getting to the end of the first call. There’s a lot of planning and thinking on my end. So yay twenty-one clients…. yay… Suddenly I’m sitting here with a full calendar and back to the grind of having a “real job” again.

And finally… pretty sure it’s it’s not broken. Just sore. I’m finally making more money from MMSL, Jennifer and the girls are happy, coaching is going great and I have a well dressed doll.

And if you want one of the last coaching spots… take a peek and drop me a line.

Four Year Year Cycles

Okay I gotta be honest here. The damn kids have got to go back to school. Summer is too long. I’m starting to go stir crazy.

Oh don’t get me wrong, the girls are great kids. They are well behaved and compliant with the rather minimal demands we put on them. We’re four introverts so everyone is usually pretty easy going and giving each other lots of space. They are just here during the day, which means neither Jennifer or myself 100% switch off.

The good news is that youngest is finally starting high school and we’ve got just four more years of school age kids. Which means right now is a finishing line of sorts and in four more years there’s another finishing line.

Looking backwards in time, summer 2009 is when I started this whole MMSL journey. Four years ago. Back then there wasn’t even the phrase MMSL… no MAP, no Alpha Beta Balance, no Captain and First Officer, no Primer, no Time Before Writing… nothing. It’s really hard to imagine a time of not knowing that information and concept collection. Just me lost on Talk About Marriage trying to figure out what I wanted to do with my life and marriage as the starting point. The ending to that four years has been writing The Mindful Attraction Plan and pretty much the final polish on The MAP as a concept. Plus leveraging all that into the Life Coaching.

 So…

2009-2013 has been MMSL 1.0

2013-2017 youngest does high school and lets call that MMSL 2.0

2017-2021 No more kids! Which creates a new freedom for Jennifer and myself and let’s just say that’s MMSL 3.0

We’ve actually somewhat decided what MMSL 3.0 will be in that without worrying about kid watching, we’ll be vastly more able to travel. By travel I mean speaking, appearances, the whole touring craven fame monster thing. Jennifer and I traveling together. Which means we really need to be based out of a hub airport city. Jennifer likes warm weather. Yada yada yada, we’re kinda fixated on Dallas as the targeted city to move to.

We’re already starting to talk about fixing and replacing things based on the move in four years. It’s going to be one massive garage sale / large trash pickup summer 2017 and we’ll move with exactly what we must keep and no more. Then buy new of everything else when we arrive. Plus we both hate maintaining a house, we plan to travel a lot, so we’re obviously more looking toward a condo unit or even a rental when we go.

We ah… still haven’t visited Dallas yet. We’ll do that sometime and see if we like it. But we picked the neighborhood already anyway lol.

Apart from that, I haven’t really visualized what we do other than travel all over the world doing events for MMSL 3.0.

Now of course it’s MMSL 2.0. Which as far as I can tell is whipping myself harder to write more blog posts, but it’s really going to be repeating the same process as The Mindful Attraction Plan five or six more times. Taking one slice of the Primer/MMSL thought and then really expanding that into something properly targeted and marketable. I don’t see everyone needing *all* the books for their own life, but I do see all the books fitting into a shared theoretical framework. Hopefully everything cross sells and it’s all awesome. Plus the coaching and seeing exactly where the whole forum thing goes… 2000+ members now. Wow.

It’s going to be a very busy four years. Five or six more books in the next few years seems crazy, but I think I’ve found my groove with them finally.

Oh and Pro Tip. It’s the exact middle of these four year cycles that seem to be the hardest.

So how about you? Are you in a four year cycle? What’s the next step for you?

Side Effects of Carrying Cash May Include Sudden Whoretex

Whoretex: A portmanteau of “Whore” and “Vortex”. A whoretex forms when a woman becomes suddenly sexually motivated in the presence of a man with money.

FuzzyBunny:  I work OT and pay off a large bill early.  No reaction.  I work OT again, when offered, and buy new comfy bed she likes.  Still no reaction.  Change out an outlet that was not working, get a BJ while watching TV.  2 months of no OT, griping about money.  I don’t understand.

I make enough to pay our bills and then some.  WTF?

Athol:  Firstly, you gotta get a new member name on the forum. FuzzyBunny isn’t very metal.

Anyway…

Usually the women have to actually see the money to have a positive emotional reaction to it. Money that is in bank accounts is often invisible to women, unless it’s not enough to cover the bills and they have a negative emotional reaction to it. So working some over-time, taking the money out of the bank and buying a new comfy bed with cash = win.  It’s kind of the same with the changing an outlet cover. It’s an objective observable task you did. It nets more points than something she can’t readily see.

Something else to consider is that women do adapt to a certain level of income and you don’t get points for it after a while. So if you make $25,000 a year and get a bump to $35,000, you’re going to get a happy wife reaction. Making $400,000 and dropping to $350,000, is in her mind likely a concerning fuck-up on your part. Objectively speaking $350,000 is more than $35,000, but the $35,000 wife is likely happier about things than the $350,000 one.

I don’t make the rules, I just report them with a wide brush. And just to repeat one more time, women aren’t all gold-diggers, but they are at least copper and silver-diggers. The bills have to be paid, nice things once in a while are nice. But there is unquestionably an adaptation thing where women hate going backwards in standard of living the same way men hate blowjobs vanishing off the menu for no clear reason.

Always have some cash if you can.

Anyway…

In terms of Jennifer and myself, all the book money just funnels into the joint checking account. She pays the bills and I trust her implicitly with handling that. But I do have a affiliate thing that pays into PayPal and now the coaching money gets funneled that way too. There’s been a couple times where “my money” has paid for something and she had truly a palpable look of relief. The big one being the month Amazon paid out several days later in the month than usual… now on the “wrong side” of the forum bill and scary close to the mortgage payment. It’s a nice feeling saying “no problem” and having “magically appearing” money in your hand.

I’ve also lightly teased her that giving her cash entitles me to additional services lol… and she’s been flexible meeting my demands. Bearing in mind all this is a game between us. Half the money is hers anyway. Even if I was technically paying her for sex, I’m paying her with half her money. So it’s really like a 50% off sale… which gets me to second base with Jennifer.

It’s actually kinda fun. Scratch a good girl, wave $300 and see how fast a whoretex forms to suck you dry.

Jennifer’s Amazing Thighs

So we’re on our walk, we walk a lot together, it’s just something peaceful and light exercise. Funny how enjoyable it is these days really.

Anyway…

Jennifer is a quiet, peaceful, polite, easy-going girl. Jennifer doesn’t yell across crowded rooms at people, she’s the type to walk across the room and talk to someone. So when I’m on a quiet peaceful walk, with quiet peaceful Jennifer, the last thing I expect is for her to suddenly blurt something out at 117.3 decibels.

“IT’S THIGHS!”

I don’t often reach for the “Bitch WTF you talking about?” card. But…

“Ahhhhh…. I need a little more to go on.”

“At the Taste of the Caribbean, it’s thighs!”

Okay I tried saying it nicely….

“Bitch WTF you talking about?”

“The Jamaican chicken. They use thighs! That’s why it’s always so good. Kinda crunchy skin and a little fatty and yummy. It’s thighs! They use thighs!”

Lightbulb!

O.M.G. it is thighs. That’s brilliant.

I must tell everyone.

Here’s the story. About two months back we started BJ shopping… oh… I mean we started shopping at BJ’s Wholesale. Anyway, you can get 24 chicken thighs in six pouches of four and it’s been a nice go-to meal option. I get two pieces, Jennifer gets one, eldest gets one and youngest is a fucking vegetarian because animals have faces or something fluffy bunnies like that.

Jennifer:  -_-

Anyway, I’ve always had a mental image of barbequing chicken as being a bit tricky because of the odd shapes and getting it to cook through right. So never really bothered to try. But chicken thighs… and nothing but chicken thighs… holy crap barbequing them is crazy easy and ridiculously good. Moderate but evenly sized, the skin seals the juice in pretty well. Low heat and just keep them turning as needed. If they start to get too close to each other, just pull the thighs apart and put them where you want.

I had been using a very small amount of olive oil and seasoning, but…. olive oil and open flames seems to EXTREME FIRE.

So like I was saying, just coat the thighs in a good seasoning, be brave on this step and don’t hold back. Give it a good shake of the flavor. This is barbeque not cucumber sandwiches we’re making. My favorites lately are this Asian sweet ginger, garlic and sesame seed mix. There’s a red curry blend that rocks as well.

So there we go. Cheapest part of the chicken is the best to throw on the grill. Great just as thighs or slice them off the bone for a salad or something. And full credit to Jennifer for stumbling onto this one. Usually I’m the creative foodie and she beat me to this one so naming rights are hers. I’m just proud to say that Jennifer’s Thighs are amazing, I could dive in and eat all day.

Prayer-in-Action Beats Prayer-in-Talk

Asked in the Faith and Spirituality section of the forum…

@European_Bob:  As I’ve been progressing through the MAP one of the key points that I’ve found for men is to not let your wife’s mood have an influence on your’s. i.e. if she is complaining then stay aloof and happy. Another aspect is OI – if she doesn’t want to have sex then I’m still fine, I can go off and do <manly thing> instead. Follow this train of thought through, it appears that one of the goals of the MAP is to become self-sufficient, not reliant on your wife or anything else for what you need and/or want in life.

That however seems to be in contradiction to the whole Christian perspective of being reliant or dependent on God. Personally I’m not sure I even understand 100% what it means to rely on God.

How do these seemingly 180 degree opposite positions work together?

Athol:  I admit I do start to get frustrated with the constant attempts to make MMSL a perfectly Christian thing. There’s a lot of overlap that I think Christians can identify with,  but I’m just as close to Christianity as say Buddhism. You could make a case that running your MAP is a close cousin to the Noble Eightfold Path. There’s a Kiwi twist on a Taoist symbol on the front cover of The Mindful Attraction Plan.  Outcome Independence is classic mindfulness… be here now… oh hang on, let me cue up Yoda…

Yoda:  Ready are you? What know you of ready? For eight hundred years have I trained Jedi. My own counsel will I keep on who is to be trained. A Jedi must have the deepest commitment, the most serious mind. This one a long time have I watched. All his life has he looked away… to the future, to the horizon. Never his mind on where he was. Hmm? What he was doing. Hmph. Adventure. Heh. Excitement. Heh. A Jedi craves not these things. You are reckless.

So as you can see I’m not exactly dipping my pen in one ink well. MMSL is a multi-layered synthesis and there is still more to come from me.

All that being said… let me try and answer the original question and really, I’m not trying to piss Christians off here. I’m trying to motivate you to get into action and do something about what ails you. That’s all. The world is going to hell in a hand basket. We are so far beyond needing to just save the marriages of our own little sects and corners of the world.  We save every relationship we can. We’re running out of time to turn the tide.

/rant on

The MAP isn’t about self-sufficiency in the sense of not needing people, it’s about creating personal value that other people want to be associated with. If anything it’s acutely aware of people needing other people and works to ensure you’re in a state of attractiveness to be loved and wanted.

It is self-sufficient in the sense that it is aware that no one is going to just gift you with a happy life and relationship, so you have to create those conditions for yourself.

Because MMSL focuses on what you can actually do for yourself under your own steam, it is in one sense in direct opposition to a faith-based approach to personal development.

Also when you consider that God isn’t required to answer your prayers the way you want him to, you should also consider the need to be outcome independent on getting God’s help if you’re a Christian. I mean if he thinks you need to learn something through suffering, it might be several years or even decades before your situation is resolved the way you hope it will be.

Prayer is more often than not a verbalized negative statement to the effect that you cannot do something. It’s a negative energy statement that you are powerless to create the change you want. That without some outside force, you will fall, fail and falter.

Well I say bullshit.

You damn well can do this stuff. It just works. It works for the same reason powered flight does not require angels to lift a 747 off the ground. It works because God’s assistance is not required.

When you stop waiting on God to provide and support you, and you just get into action and start making changes in your life…that’s when changes start happening.

There is unquestionably a spiritual component to what I teach, unstated in the Married Man Sex Life Primer but stated clearly in The Mindful Attraction Plan . Namely that your actions are your true statement of faith and that they influence the universe around you in positive or negative ways. I believe spirituality is seamlessly interwoven with the mundane tasks of everyday life. Trying to separate activities into “spiritual” and “non-spiritual” categories is misunderstanding the nature of the universe. I believe you create a greater sense of positive spirituality by building a deck, helping a friend, cleaning a room or working your job, than you ever will in prayer. Prayer-in-action will always be better than prayer-in-talk.

In fact more often than not, your prayers worsen your situation because they are negative in tone. Faithless prayers are a negative energy effect. You don’t actually have faith things can be better when you complain to God about your life.

If you had faith God can help your life, you’d just walk out your front door and start living your life like you had God’s help. You don’t have to keep praying like you’re feeding God’s parking meter or your spirituality will expire.

God is not sending a limo to drive you to the gym. Some shit you have to handle yourself.

/rant off

 

And tomorrow we’re talking about Jennifer’s amazing thighs.

Jennifer: ???

What are Your Three Monkeys?

Ages ago my dad told me a story of one of the other executives in his office, who had a peculiar method of dealing with the problems of his department. Outside his office door was a small shelf and on that shelf were Three Monkeys. The traditional hear-no-evil, see-no-evil and speak-no-evil trio. I believe they were plush toys of some description.

When an underling was reporting a problem to the executive, they had to pick up one of the monkeys and take it into the office with them while they presented the problem. If the executive accepted the problem as something he was going to work on… he kept the monkey on his desk.

Which left just two monkeys sitting on the shelf outside his office. When he accepted a second problem, there would be just one monkey. After a third problem was accepted, the shelf would be empty of monkeys.

No monkeys meant underlings weren’t to bother him as he was already busy and a fourth problem would reduce his problem solving effectiveness. So in all likelihood, bringing a fourth problem to him would simply result in the fourth problem taking longer to solve. The rationale being simple – people can only work effectively on changing about three things at once.

As a problem was solved, the associated monkey would return to the shelf outside his office. This was the signal for the availability for a new problem.

I tell this story because it’s one of the first concepts I tell my 12-Week Guided MAP coaching clients. Part of that process is identifying twenty-four different things to work on and improve over the 12-week period. The twenty-four things to do come from four things in each of the six spheres from the new book: Physical, Money, Displays of High Value, Relationship Comfort, Personality and Sexuality. I rank them all in a priority list. I could explain how I prioritize the list, but it’s rather arcane and the description resembles a recitation of Vogon poetry.

So far everyone’s eyes bug out at the mother of all to-do lists I create. Except each week, we’re just going to work on three things starting at the top of the priority list. As something gets mastered / completed, we cross it off the list and add a new monkey.

This overwhelming sense of “there’s too much to do in my MAP” is I think very common. If you’re in a sucky place in your life, with multiple large problems, it’s easy to just give up and not try fixing any of them. But if you can narrow it down to just three things you need to get done it’s more manageable. You can even forgive yourself some failures on things that haven’t made the Three Monkeys status yet. Sure you’re going to clean the spare room out and get to a dental appointment, the kids are still running wild… but this week your Three Monkeys are joining a gym, creating a budget and getting a plumber to come fix that mysterious water problem. So don’t freak out about how bad things are, or how crappy you feel. Just trust the process that fixing anything is better than doing nothing. It’s going to get better.

So leave a comment…

If you only have to do just three things to make your life a little better this week…

What are your Three Monkeys?

Coaching Finally Available

One of the purposes of The Mindful Attraction Plan book was to widen the scope of what I write about to a whole life perspective. Which then is a platform to allow me to advise from a whole life perspective…

…which is a way to say we’re finally in the position to do coaching services.

There’s still some odds and ends to add to the website, but for now I’d like to get started. The website is http://mindfulattractionplan.com/

The intent is that the MMSL blog and forum continue to roll on into the future as they have been. By adding the coaching as a separate website it helps keep it distinct as a service.

Behind the scenes, it’s also been a very interesting time for us. The publication of The Mindful Attraction Plan has been extremely clarifying for me as a writer about what works and doesn’t. It’s also been a major income bump… though it’s hard to know exactly where sales will go, but all in all it’s doing moderately better than the Primer and the Primer hasn’t dropped in sales. So assuming it holds, I just doubled my income. Which is both awesome and mildly freaky.

Added onto that, we’re starting the coaching practice. Yes I said we. It’s an LLC and Jennifer and I partners. She’s far more business connected than I am and has been invaluable. Assuming the life coaching takes off and can expand to multiple coaches, she’s the first on the list for the job. In all seriousness she deserves it and would be good at it. What she’s doing for work now (it’s a small field, but she’s endlessly #1 in Connecticut for her job) isn’t that dissimilar.

So…

MMSL = Athol as an author.

MAP Coaching = Athol + Jennifer LLC

So anyway, what it sums out to is that I just signed another legally binding agreement with my wife. It’s the first one I’ve signed since turning on to the Red Pill et al. It’s a different experience. I expected some sort of “moment” doing it, but in all honesty it was anti-climatic and rather peaceful.

I think it’s called trust.

I trust my wife.

That’s a precious thing.

Anyway… go buy some coaching!  http://www.mindfulattractionplan.com

Mindful Attraction Plan Review

Transparent 3Dcover for website ad

Natural Life Wife….

The book itself reads more like the life manual you *SHOULD* have gotten passed down to you verbally from your dad growing up. Unfortunately, many of us either didn’t have dads around or if we did, they lacked the know how and street smarts to explain all this to us:/ Maybe give your dad a copy himself- and one for your mom while you’re at it! It’s not that the advice is so outrageously revolutionary but that it’s so rare in this world of ours so lacking in common sense. You know you probably should have focused more on tangible job skills in college rather than just majoring for fun in a basically purely liberal arts field, but seeing it in black and white drives it home. You know you should get in shape and keep up a regular work out schedule but having it explained how that affects the other aspects of your life make it clear it’s a “must do” not just something that would be *nice* to do. You know you should get your finances in order but realizing that it’s limiting you in so many ways really makes it more urgent.

I’m still figuring out how exactly I want to set up my MAP beyond doing the basics of trying to get my act together and working out regularly so I have energy and health to better my life and marriage. I hate to say it but there’s a lot to work on:( However this plan is laid out pretty plainly- I can zero in on the worst areas first. I can say if this or well any of Athol’s writings had been around back in my teens, my life today would be much different. My 30?s, which are coming up in a few years, would be much less scary too! I’m hoping to see significant improvement by then.

 

 

Cooking Game: Scrambled Eggs

Scrambled Eggs . Easy breakfast, quick to cook, uses leftovers, lots of protein, tasty. Let’s get started.

Here’s the formula….

Eggs + splash of milk + sprinkle of salt = The Glue Holding Everything Together

Meat + Vegetable + Cheese = The Flavor

The Glue + The Flavor = Scrambled Eggs

Here’s what makes it so quick, tasty and easy….

…use leftover meat and vegetables.

Seriously that’s it. Last night you grilled some beef and peppers and you have a leftovers of a strip of seasoned beef and peppers… that’s already full of flavor and already cooked, so all you have to do is chop it up and reheat it. It’s really just that simple. ANY meat, ANY vegetable. It’s all works just fine.

So chop your meat up and your vegetables and toss them in a pan on medium heat. Add a little butter to stop it sticking, but you’re really just warming it all up rather than anything else.

Once that’s in the pan warming, get a bowl and start cracking the eggs. I use 3 eggs per adult and 2 per kid as a rough guide. I add “a splash” of milk which I guess comes to about a 1/4 cup of milk for 7-8 eggs. Sprinkle some salt on the eggs, take a fork and mix them for about 10-15 seconds tops. Seriously, just mix them and stop, you don’t have to try and frappe the damn things. Quickly mix and pour it over the top of the meat and vegetables in the pan.

Medium heat, maybe a squeeze more.

You’re going to occasionally stir the eggs and reshuffle them in the pan. The goal here is to try and keep them moist and fluffy… working toward the goal where the entire pan of eggs comes up to temperature at the same time, rather than cooking half of them on the bottom of the pan and having runny eggs on top. It’s kinda hard to pull off exactly, but good enough is good enough.

Right before you think the eggs are done. I mean right before. That’s when you add the cheese and not before. What you want is scrambled eggs + melted cheese nestled within the scrambled eggs. If you add the cheese early though, the eggs and the cheese fused together in something that tastes… er… reasonable, but the texture is horrible.

Adding the cheese right at the end works though, don’t even worry if it’s not melted in the pan, as you pull it all off the heat and start serving it up, the heat from the eggs will melt the cheese… and the cool cheese help will stop the eggs from overcooking further. Am I amazing or what?

Got all that?

MASTERCLASS

Here’s the combination that will peel panties off.

Bacon + Fresh Baby Spinach + Feta Cheese

Bacon = The worlds most perfect food. Need I say more? Bacon always works and if it doesn’t, dump her and find a woman it will work on.

Fresh Baby Spinach = This is an uncooked vegetable, so we have to handle this one a little differently. Just add them with the eggs and cook them together. The leaves will stay “big” until they are completely cooked, when they shrink and wrinkle up. The good news is that eggs and baby spinach will complete cooking at pretty much exactly the same time.

Feta Cheese = This is the perfect scrambled egg cheese. It’s strongly flavored, comes already kibbled into small pieces and tends to stay intact in the scrambled eggs. So you get a small chunk of identifiable tasty cheese. It’s the MILF of cheeses.

HOLY CRAP AWESOME CLASS

When you get good at routine scrambled eggs… it scales up in size pretty well. Meaning it’s possible to switch out to a large casserole dish / big pot, and do two or three dozen eggs at a time for a big group of people. Just use more meat and more vegetables of course. It’s the slow warming up to temperature that’s the trick and having the entire dish suddenly cook through at once.

You can do this. Start small. Go bigger. Anyone can cook.