Shhhh.  Don’t tell anyone, but today is my brother Charlie’s 50th birthday!  For some reason or another, my brother doesn’t want much fanfare for this birthday.  I mean, come on, what better way to celebrate than on your 50th birthday?!   I told him that I wanted to send 50 balloons to his office at the Apple HQ in Austin, but he quickly replied that he’d rather have the money that I would have spent on the balloons than the actual balloons.  This is also the same person who cringes at spending $30 for a plate of food on a business trip that can easily be expensed, i.e., not being paid out of his own pocket.   Every bite of food he would put in his mouth he’d think “that’s a $5 bite!”  Um, to say we are complete opposites when it comes to spending money on food, that would be an understatement.

But he does have some exciting news!  Long time readers will remember that not only is he an amazing writer on his blog Back to the Fridge, but he’s also a published author of the book “Why Your Last Diet Failed You and How This Book Won’t Help You on Your Next One.”   Not only that, but he’s constantly writing fiction and non-fiction where he writes about it on this blog.   And because he doesn’t have enough creative outlets either, he’s also writing music and plays piano – has taught himself how to play the flute and violin, and guitar, just to name a few instruments.

Oh, and all this while being a smart computer guru at Apple HQ – which is why I now know why I have Cupertino weather on my iPhone, because while Austin is Apple’s National HQ, Cupertino is the WORLD HQ.  I always thought it was random on why I had that weather on my phone!

But I digress.  What this all boils down to is my brother has now brought all of his passions, writings, music, etc. all under one roof!  I actually have only spent one minute on there because it just went live today, on his 50th birthday, which wasn’t a coincidence, but I hope you will all stop by and leave him a birthday message on his new blog – you can click here to get there.  Tell him his favorite sister Biz sent you! Open-mouthed smile

One of my longstanding projects is to get all my old photographs in order – I have boxes and boxes of photos in my basement, which are just decaying year after year and I need to start preserving them before they are lost.  But, being that I’ve had this blog for 7 1/2 years, I was able to put a compilation of photos together.

PicMonkey Collage - charlie

And I like that he thinks he’s my Mom’s favorite, but we all know that’s not true.

charlie favorite

In 2012, Charlie was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.  It still seems unreal that he went through that and has now been cancer free for the last two years after chemo and radiation.  It was weird because he lived so far away from me that I didn’t see the day to day struggle he must have gone through while trying to get well.  It wasn’t until he came to visit and I saw his bald head that it really sunk in.  This is actually one of my favorite pictures of my brother hugging my Mom, and when I look at it, I get all teary thinking we could have lost him.

charlie no hair

He’s funny.  He’s super smart (I think me and my twin sister split a brain!) but most of all he’s always there for me if I need him.  When Tony got sick and it didn’t look good, Charlie called me and said “do you want us to come up?”  I said yes, and he and his family finished Thanksgiving dinner at a friends house, went home, packed their bags and drove 20 hours to be with me and stayed right through until Tony’s memorial.  That meant more to me than they will ever know.

So I hope you go wish him a happy birthday!  Wish I could be with you, but we’ll have fun when I visit in March!


I’ve gotten a couple dozen emails from blog readers asking if I will go back to blogging five times a week.  It makes me happy that you guys miss me on Tuesday and Thursdays, but I am enjoying the extra time I have on the days I don’t post.  Like yesterday morning.  I woke up at 6:45.  All I had to do was take a shower and get ready for work, but I still had an hour and fifteen minutes before I had to leave for work.  Plenty of time to make scones!

Normally I put my scone batter in the freezer before cutting them to get really nice clean lines, but I didn’t have the luxury to do that yesterday morning, so I rough cut the scones but left them in a circle, and then five minutes before removing them from the oven, I cut them through and let them finish baking.  Jacob was getting ready for school as I was taking them out of the oven and I told him he could have one for breakfast.  After I posted this photo below, he felt he was gypped because I had the sugar free caramel sauce at work, and not at home.  Jacob, they are so much better with the caramel sauce! #sorrynotsorry

50bday 032

OMG, so good!  I could never get Tony to eat any of my scones because he had one bad scone in 1989 and swore he would never eat another one for the rest of this life, and he never did.  Mine are not dry, they are moist and delicious.  I rounded out my breakfast with egg whites with feta cheese and some fresh strawberries.  Delish!


Today is my rest day!  I’ve been killing it at the gym lately – I’ve averaged about 16k steps this week!  My strength training is getting really good and it’s my new routine to hit the gym for an hour after work M-Thursday.  But I have to remember that I am nearly 48 years old, so I chose Party Pizza Friday as my rest day.  I also signed up for another hot yoga class tomorrow, but notice it’s with a new instructor, so we’ll see how that goes.

They say it takes 21 days to form a habit.  Well, it’s been 21 days for me to kick the habit of no wine.  I know, I don’t believe it either!  I haven’t talked to my step-son directly this week yet, but I am sure he’s still alcohol free too so far this month – that was our deal.  But I have to say, I probably will continue to abstain for the unforeseen future.  I know adding it back in won’t help me get to a healthier weight, so it will just have to be on the back burner for now.

Happy Friday and happy birthday again to my brother!  Let’s show him so love on his new blog!  I hope you have a wonderful weekend – see you on Monday, but in the meantime, you can follow me on Instagram (my bizzy kitchen).  Make it a great day!