Erik and Lyle

What would it take for a person to pull the trigger on a 12 gauge shotgun while it is aimed at their father? What about their mother? How about both? It’s impossible to say why a person would do that, let alone two sons in the same family.

Jose Menendez was originally from Cuba but moved to the United States in 1960. Mary Louise ‘Kitty’ Andersen was from Illinois and married Jose in 1963. They would eventually move to New York and welcome their son Joseph Lyle in 1968. In 1970 Erik Galen was born and Kitty was no longer teaching but raising their two children. Jose, as a corporate executive relocated his family to Beverly Hills in 1986.

The idyllic family existence was shattered on August 20, 1989. Lyle and Erik had been out to a movie and the annual Taste of LA Festival, and upon their return home they discovered the bodies of Jose and Kitty, shot to death.

Lyle called police yelling that “Someone killed my parents!”

When police arrived, Lyle and Erik were not suspected and they were never tested to see if they had handled or fired a gun recently. Jose had been shot once in the back of the head from where he had slept on the sofa. Kitty who was next to him rose from the first gunshots and was shot in the leg. She fell from this and was shot several more times in the arm, chest, and face. This left her unrecognizable.

In the months after the deaths of their parents, the Menendez brothers spent lavishly, but not according to other relatives. They did go on vacations, purchased a new home each and even bought other property and luxury items. The police suspected this spree was connected to the murder of their parents.

In March 1990 the brothers were arrested days apart for the murder of their parents. The pre trial proceedings took over two years and their brothers were tried separately and both ended in a hung jury.

The second trial, they were tried together. The brothers claimed that they had murdered their parents because they feared for their lives. They had lived with emotional, physical, and sexual abuse by their father their whole lives. Their mother enabled their father and was drug addicted, an alcoholic, and mentally unstable.

The sexual abuse had started again and weeks before the murder their father had threatened to kill them if they didn’t keep it a secret. In his first trial Erik had been accused of being homosexual and that the alleged sexual abuse was in fact consensual. While in Lyle’s trial the prosecution stated that “Men could not be raped because they lack the necessary equipment to be raped.”

The two brothers learned their parents had rifles hidden in their bedroom, and fearing for their lives they purchased two shotguns. On that day in August, a final confrontation would occur.

The Menendez brothers fired their shotguns at their parents killing them both. Was it justified? Would they have been better off contacting police about the abuse instead? We will never know.

At the second trial the judge did not allow much defense testimony on the abuse allegations and never instructed the jury that they could vote on manslaughter charges instead of murder charges. The jury felt that the brothers killed their parents not out of fear, but out of greed for the inheritance that was almost $15 million.

As a result Lyle and Erik Menendez were convicted of first-degree murder and conspiracy to commit murder. They were both sentenced to life without the possibility of parole. The brothers are now housed in the same prison after 22 years of being in different institutions. They are in the Richard J Donovan Correctional Institution in San Diego CA.

Be strong, make good choices, be safe

Last Meals – Part 3

It’s Monday again! And that means we get Last Meal Monday! So tuck in your napkin, pull up a chair and dig in to these last meals by some of the most notorious criminals.

(This post and series is not intended to cause controversy regarding capital punishment, and is only intended to discuss the final meals of those who have been judged in a court of law and sentenced to the death penalty.)

  • Who: John Wayne Gacy
  • Age: 52
  • Where: Stateville Correctional Center, Crest Hill, IL
  • How: Lethal Injection
  • When: May 10, 1994
  • His Crime: Murder and Rape of at least 33 young men and teenage boys in the 1970’s.
  • Last Meal: Dozen deep fried shrimp, a bucket of original recipe chicken from KFC, French fries, and a pound of strawberries.
  • Who: Ted Bundy
  • Age: 42
  • Where: Florida State Prison
  • How: Electric Chair
  • When: January 24, 1989
  • His Crime: Kidnapping, Rape, Murder of at least 30 young women, it’s believed to be more.
  • Last Meal: He declined a last meal so he was given the standard last meal option: Medium-rare steak, eggs over easy, hash browns, toast, milk, coffee, juice, butter and jelly. He did not eat it.
  • Who: Aileen Wuornos
  • Age: 46
  • Where: Florida State Prison
  • How: Lethal Injection
  • When: October 9, 2002
  • Her Crime: Murder of 7 men.
  • Last Meal: A cup of black coffee.

Fitness

Or lack there of. I type this while eating Mexican food. I love food. I am not exercising. Therefore I’m gaining weight, and not meeting any of my goals. An then when I gain weight, I get depressed and what do I do? I eat. It’s a horrible cycle and I wish I had the strength to break it.

Each day I wake up and plan to eat healthy and then by time I get to work, all of my good intentions have floated out the window. And I seem to find more and more excuses to not go to the gym and I am mad at myself for that. Life happens but as my therapist will tell me, I have to make time for me and focus on keeping boundaries and a balance in my life.

So far I am losing. I need to find a way to break the cycle and start becoming more healthy. I may consider some extreme measures if I can’t get myself on the right path.

Please send encouraging thoughts to me and any tips that you have found that will break the cycle.

Be strong, be beautiful, be you

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Over Night Oats

Recently I discovered the delight of having Over Night Oats. And it’s opened up a new avenue of options for me. Over Night Oats are a great way to eat healthy but take it on the go with you. The base recipe is customizable and so is what you put into the oats. Here is currently my base recipe and my favorite option to make. Enjoy!

  • Over Night Oats:
    • Ingredients:
      • 1/2 Cup of Steel Cut Oats
      • 3/4 Cup of Milk (any milk you prefer)
      • 1 Tsp Chia Seeds (Optional)
      • 1 Banana sliced
      • 1-2 Tbsp Peanut butter, I use creamy but any variety that you like
      • Jar or container with a tight lid
  • Directions:
    • The night before, you will add the oats, chia seeds, milk and the toppings you like, for me I use banana and peanut butter, into the jar/container.
    • Layer the ingredients as you like, and pour the milk in last.
    • Seal the jar and put into the refrigerator overnight.
    • In the morning, when ready to eat, you simply mix the contents with your spoon and enjoy.
  • Alternatives: The only limitation is on your preferences
    • Strawberry and Banana
    • Blueberry
    • Chocolate
    • Apple Cinnamon
    • Mixed Berry
    • Maple

Happy Eating!

Jan’s Health Studio

One of my favorite movies is Clue the movie based on a board game and has a group of six dinner guests trying to find a murderer based on very random clues presented after dinner by the butler. After we uncover more and more murders in a locked mansion, we are finally told how it all happened by no other than the butler. But wait, it could have happened that way, but what about this second option. And we are told yet another probable solution to the crimes but wait there is one more final option that was actually how it happened. This case in Wisconsin reminds me of that movie where it has multiple solutions, but no title card saying this is how it actually happened.

Madison Wisconsin, 1970’s, you wouldn’t have to look far to find a selection of massage parlors in the capital city. They had names such as “This is Heaven”, “The Geisha House”, and “Genie’s Magic Touch”. They all hinted at the types of massages they offered, dicks and balls and happy endings. One parlor that was located in a strip mall, Jan’s Health Studio, had more of a clinical name, but it was offering the same services as the other studios with less discreet names.

Jan’s Health Studio had a masseuse named Barbara Hoffman, and she had a regular client, a shipping clerk named Gerald Davies, and Gerald was in love with Barbara.

Barbara had been a student at UW-Madison, majoring in biochemistry and had a 3.9 GPA and was a National Honor Society scholar. She spoke three languages and was trying to leave the skin trade as that industry attracted some unsavory characters like a cocaine kingpin, Sam Cerro.

Does this story seem invented to garner sympathy from her clients? Everything up to this point is 100% true. Being hired by an insurance company, Barbara was able to leave the Health Studio. Oddly enough, Gerald and Barbara kept a relationship going after she left.

Here’s How It Could Have Happened

December 23, 1977, when Gerald was at Barbara’s, she told him about an odd occurrence in her home the day before, she stated that when she had returned home there had been a dead body in her bathtub. She didn’t know who it was and assumed it was left there to frame her for murder from the organized criminals from the Studio. body

Barbara Hoffman

Barbara claimed she panicked and dragged the nearly nude body outside and hid it in a snowbank. She said she needed Gerald’s help and he informed her “What you need is to call the police.” Barbara said she couldn’t do that, there was no way they would believe her. He agreed to help her, and they took the body from the snowbank and put it into Gerald’s car. They ways to dispose of the body came full circle back to being placed into another snowbank. But this time they found the largest one they could, and it happened to be at the entrance to Blackhawk Ski Club, about 20 minutes away. The couple agreed to keep their adventure secret and planned to spend Christmas with their respective families.

Gerald kept secret the adventure on December 23 for approximately 30 hours. On Christmas Day he went to the police and told them everything. The story was less than believable coming from Gerald, but they did go to Blackhawk to check the burial site. When they dug into the snowbank, they found a dead man dressed in his underpants and tied up with rope. Gerald had told the truth about the body. However, it was possible that Gerald had killed the man himself and made up a crazy story about it appearing at his girlfriend’s house.

The police issued a warrant and examined Barbara’s apartment. There was no evidence of a corpse but there was evidence of bleach having cleaned up the bathroom floor. Crime scene investigators searched the snowbank where Gerald said the body was before they moved it. They were able to find blood and hair in the snowbank.

But who was the dead man who was only clad in his underpants?

The police discovered the man was Harry Berge, a 52-year-old single man who worked at a tire company in Stoughton. He lived alone after his mother passed away a few years before. He had a life insurance policy for $30,000(approximately $140,000 today) and the beneficiary was Linda Millar. The police didn’t know who Linda Millar was. But Gerald did. Gerald stated that Barbara was Linda Millar.

Gerald continued by stating that after she left the massage parlor Barbara tried to cut all ties to her former life and used the new name, Linda Millar. Barbara now had a motive for killing Harry Berge, who she claimed she didn’t know.

Prosecutors went forward with a case against Barbara Hoffman. Their chief witness was Gerald and since he had been lied to by his girlfriend as she was carrying on with another man, he had good reason to testify against her.

But then letters were received by the police, the defense lawyer, and the local paper. The handwriting was authenticated as being written by Gerald Davies. In his letter he stated that “Barb is innocent and I wrecked her life,” he wrote. “All those stories I told about Barb are false.” However, he never stated what the true story was. Before anyone could question Gerald Davies, he was found dead in a bathtub after Easter. His cause of death was unclear but suspected he had overdosed.

Here Is Another Way To Look At It.

If we believed Gerald’s dying confession that Barbara was not guilty, then there is only one other suspect who killed Harry Berge, Gerald Davies himself, the man the police suspected initially.

Gerald Davies

Gerald made more sense than Barbara. If Barbara did want to kill Harry for the insurance money, killing him while he was in his underwear, hiding his body in the snowbank so nobody could find it was a poor way of committing the crime.

The medical examiner said that Harry Berge died from trauma to the head, and although a woman could be responsible it was more of a man’s handiwork. The police postulated that Gerald entered Barbara’s apartment, caught the two of them together and immediately killed Harry to death. But something didn’t make sense.

The body had been kept in the snow near Barbara’s apartment dumpster, the blood confirmed this. Originally this was as far as Barbara could drag the body. IF Gerald had killed Harry and then was responsible for taking the body to Blackhawk, there was no reason to keep the body near the dumpster.

Barbara’s Apartment

But then another possibility became apparent. What if Gerald entered Barbara’s home, found Harry there alone, and then Gerald killed him but left the body in the tub for Barbara to find. That would explain why Barbara would drag the body to the dumpster and buried under snow. And she did wait a day before talking to Gerald about it. Gerald helped her move the body, and she never suspected her boyfriend had killed her lover. She claimed she feared being framed for murder from the massage parlor criminals, when really it was Gerald.

When the court trial came, the district attorney announced they were dropping charges against Barbara as they were missing their main witness. Barbara’s lawyer was triumphant and accepted this. As she was walking out of the courtroom, police arrested her again, this time for double-murder. She was now accused of killing both Harry Berge and Gerald Davies.

But wasn’t Gerald’s death an overdose? Police learned that Gerald had a life insurance policy, and the beneficiary was Barbara Hoffman. This policy wasn’t for $30,000, it was for $750,000 (over $3,325,000 today). This was a reason to consider Gerald’s death a murder, not to mention him being the star witness on a different murder trial.

Medical examiners ran more tests than usual on Gerald and discovered that he did not die of an overdose but from cyanide poisoning. Knowing this they reexamined Harry Berge and discovered that he too had died from cyanide poisoning and not head trauma as originally believed. Harry Berge had over 40 times the lethal dosage in his system.

Sam Cerro

Police were looking into some of the organized criminals that frequented Jan’s Health Studio, like Sam Cerro. When police arrived at the studio they met an associate of Sam’s, the manager of Jan’s Health Studio, William Grover Garrott. William eventually would state that when Barbara worked at the studio, she had planned to marry a man, put a large life insurance policy of $750,000 on him and the take a Mexican honeymoon, and then poison him. She planned to then cremate his remains and return with his ashes leaving nothing for the police to analyze.

William agreed to testify against Barbara.

Barbara’s trial is the first one to be fully televised. Barbara’s lawyer, who had previously worked with both Sam Cerro and William Grover Garrott but chose to continue defending Barbara even with a conflict of interest, for which he would be disbarred and reinstated in 2000. Her lawyer had hoped to have two separate trials as he wasn’t confident that he could defend her against both murders together, separate he was confident he could win.

During the trial it was learned that with her biochemistry knowledge, and that she had purchased enough cyanide to kill both men, she was only convicted for murdering Harry Berge. She was sentenced to life in prison.

Since 1978, Barbara has not given an interview or any other statements besides one; “I did not commit the crime of which I have been accused and for which I have been convicted. And that’s all I have to say.”

Even though she has been tried, convicted, and sentenced, the police still question the finality of the case as their earlier misgivings remain.

But How About This?

We know that Barbara wanted to poison a man during a honeymoon and cremate him for a large insurance payout. Harry’s death lined up poorly with this. It is possible that William was trying to get a plea deal for Sam Cerro and told the police whatever they wanted to hear. If that is true, then the organized criminals really did frame her as she suggested.

What if William told the truth? Gerald and not Harry was the one with the large insurance policy, if she was looking to kill someone it would have been Gerald. Getting away with two similar crimes and benefitting from them would have attracted suspicion. And it’s less likely that Gerald killed Harry, since he had died by cyanide poisoning, Barbara’s weapon of choice.

But then the question is posed with her knowledge of cyanide poison, why did Harry have such a high amount in his system? Nobody would use that much if they knew anything about poison, it too would raise questions if detected by the coroner. The victim as well would detect the bitter almond smell and reject whatever you were giving them.

Here’s The Theory Of What Really Happened

On December 22, Harry had attended his Christmas Party and then went over to Barbara’s apartment. As was normal he brewed some instant coffee and taking a tin from the cabinet added several spoonsful of sugar to the coffee. It wasn’t a sugar tin. It was crystalized potassium cyanide. After taking a sip, Harry collapsed and died.

Barbara did panic and drag Harry to the snowbank before Gerald came and agreed to move it. Then he betrayed her to the police. Later when she was released on bond, Barbara went to visit Gerald and fed him something laced with the correct dosage of cyanide while he was in the bathtub.

Barbara didn’t know or didn’t believe that Gerald had loved her and recanted his statement and no longer planned to testify against her. Barbara killed Gerald to save herself from being convicted for Harry’s murder. Instead, this ensured she would be convicted even though Harry was not the man she intended to kill, nor did she directly poison him.

She herself even said, “I did not commit the crime of which I have been accused and for which I have been convicted,” after all.

Stay Weird Wisconsin

The Alexanders

This case starts with the Lorber Society. In 1840, Austrian Seer and Channel Jakob Lorber claimed he heard a voice that commanded him to write. And he did, he wrote over 25 substantial books and other shorter works. Eventually the voice that commanded Jakob would work through others until the revelations filled over 40 volumes.

During World War II the group limited their activities but after the war they started again. The revelations were a revised gnostic interpretation of Christianity, and that the universe was created by God as the environment for a society of living love. Many people, known as divine sparks, were to grow in the divine likeness until Lucifer revolted and destroyed that plan. He was then entrapped in matter and God is now using matter to filter the impure spirits. On Earth, the sparks are able to return to God, and Jesus came to Earth to speed the redemption process.

The society was run by a man named George Riehle. When Jakob Lorber founded the group, it was a severe spiritual organization that taught unflinching self-denial and upheld the belief that all non-members were basically evil. Every person in the group were free of Satan’s control and everyone else was an instrument of the Devil who needed to be purged.

Harald Alexander

Harald Alexander met George Riehle in Hamburg Germany when the man was dying, and Harald nursed him through his last days. This was in the late 1940’s or early 1950’s. When George passed away, Harald claimed he had inherited the leadership of the Lorber Society. Harald’s wife, Dagmar, accepted this without question. As did the rest of the society.

Eventually the Alexanders began their family, their first child Marina was born in 1952, and two years later their only son, Frank was born, the following year twin girls, Sabine and Petra. However, the apple of their eye, and the newest Prophet of God was Frank. He was raised that all his wishes were fulfilled, and he would eventually dictate every movement of the family.

Frank Alexander

Frank reached his teen years without much controversy, but after becoming a teenager, he decided that he could never “pollute” himself with women outside the sect and informed his father that he would be having sex with his mother, and later his older sister. Because Frank wanted it, it was allowed without question.

The incestuous relations became a common occurrence in the Alexander home. Harald enthusiastically encouraged his only son to have sex with his wife and daughters whenever he wanted. Harald showed his religious devotion by also having sex with his eldest daughter, Marina. Dagmar and Marina accepted their roles as sex objects as they were serving the Prophet of the Lord.

The actions within the family were considered normal to all of the Alexanders. Sabine and Petra had a few friends to share the information with and spoke openly about their mother and sister being “allowed to serve”. As the gossip spread the Police became interested in the Prophet and his family.

Before the law could knock at their door, the Alexanders moved to the Canary Islands and set up a small apartment in Santa Cruz, Tenerife. The neighbors found them to be an odd family who didn’t leave the apartment much. Frank and his sisters supported the family with low paying jobs. Harald played the organ and led the family in long and loud prayers.

The family lived in the apartment for 10 months.

December 22, 1970, 15-year-old Sabine was working at the villa of Dr. Walter Trenkler. She was a domestic helper, and she was working in the kitchen preparing a meal when the Doctor answered a knock at the door. The Doctor informed Sabine that her father and brother were on the patio needing to speak with her. The Doctor recalled that both father and son were covered in mud.

Dagmar (L), Marina (C), Petra (R)

Dr. Trenkler went to his office and overheard parts of the conversation and when Harald stated to his daughter: “Sabine, dear, we wanted you to know at once that Frank and I have just finished killing your mother and your sisters.”

To his amazement, Sabine didn’t scream or cry, she took her father’s hand and put it to her cheek and replied: “I’m sure you’ve done what you thought necessary.”

Harold saw Dr. Trenkler standing in shock and said: “Ah, you’ve overheard. We’ve killed my wife and other daughters. It was the hour of killing.” The horrified physician then realized that what he’d originally thought was mud and dirt on the men’s clothes, was actually human blood.

Dr. Trenkler raced into his home and called the police, but the neighbors had already called them as the sounds from the apartment were quite loud and hellish.

Officers took the Alexanders into custody, and other detectives went to the apartment. When they opened the door and walked in it was a place of carnage. All the dishes, clothing, and papers were smashed, broken, and torn into pieces. The ceiling, walls, and floors were coated in blood.

The middle of the living room were the mutilated bodies of 18-year-old Marina, and 15-year-old Petra. Their breasts and genitals had been hacked away and nailed to one wall. Marina had also been disemboweled.

In the bedroom 39-year-old Dagmar was found. Her breasts and genitals were also hacked away. Her heart was cut out and bound on a cord before being nailed to the wall.

Both father and son were at the police station and admitted to the murders. Frank stated the following: He had been in the bedroom when Dagmar entered. She had been looking at Frank and he had the feeling that his mother was not permitted to look at him in that manner. He then took a clothes hanger and struck her on the head until she fell and lost consciousness.

Harald had gone into the other room and played the organ and praised Jesus. Frank followed and struck both Marina and Petra. When Frank began to remove the offending parts Harald joined and helped him.

Harald agreed to every detail his son confessed and said that the sexual organs were “offending parts” and they had to be removed. The women in the house had known and expected the “hour of killing” at any time and that they had discussed as a family about this “holy time” and how the women were human sacrifices for The Prohet Frank Alexander. Both Frank and Harald then stated that they felt no guilt and that it was all part of their religious beliefs…. that women were unclean and had to be purified by killing.

Psychiatrists examined the father and son and concluded that they were both unfit to stand trial. Both were committed to an asylum for the criminally insane.

Sabine Alexander, the surviving female member of the family, begged the authorities to send her to the asylum with her brother and father, but she was rejected. She was instead sent to a secure convent, a place where her wish to be isolated from the ‘impure’ and ‘Devil-owned’ people who made up most of Society could be satisfied.

Frank Alexander in court

Frank and Harald Alexander were in the mental asylum, but in 1991, they managed to escape. Their whereabouts are unknown.

Be strong, make good choices, be safe

Last Meal Monday – Part 2

Another week has begun, and another posting about the last meals of condemned prisoners in the United States. I am starting to look forward to Mondays and this topic and it seems that I’m not the only one interested in this topic. Many people like to know what the condemned eat before being escorted to the death chamber.

(This post and series is not intended to cause controversy regarding capital punishment, and is only intended to discuss the final meals of those who have been judged in a court of law and sentenced to the death penalty.)

  • Who: Gary Gilmore
  • Age: 36
  • Where: Draper, UT
  • How: Firing Squad
  • When: January 17, 1977
  • His Crime: Murder of two men in 1976. He asked to be executed and didn’t fight the sentencing.
  • Last Meal: Baked potato, a few cups of coffee, hard boiled eggs, a hamburger, and three shots of Jack Daniel’s whiskey.
  • Who: Gary Carl Simmons Jr.
  • Age: 33
  • Where: Mississippi
  • How: Lethal Injection
  • When: June 20, 2012
  • His Crime: Murder and Rape
  • Last Meal: Supreme deep dish pizza that had jalapeno peppers, onions, and mushrooms. 2 large strawberry shakes, McDonald’s fries with extra mayonnaise and ketchup. 10 8 ounce packs of parmesan cheese, a family size pack of Dorito’s, and 10 8 ounce packs of ranch dressing. This meal was almost 29,000 calories!
  • Who: Bobby Wayne Woods
  • Age: 44
  • Where: Texas
  • How: Lethal Injection
  • When: December 3, 2009
  • His Crime: Kidnapping of his ex-girlfriends kids, attempted murder of one, rape and murder of the other.
  • Last Meal: Half pound of fried potatoes, two chicken fried steaks, two burgers, two fried chicken breasts, four slices of bread, three pork chops, two pitchers of milk, and a half pound of onion rings. He completed it with a chocolate cake as dessert.

Here are the three last meal requests for this week. Have a great week!

Hirsutism

Funny looking word right? If you know what it is then you know what this is about. If this is a word you are unfamiliar with, hang on, I will explain.

Hirsutism is defined as: Excessive hair growth on unexpected areas of the body, such as on the face, chest, and back.

I’m not talking peach fuzz or the hair that would normally grow on your body. I’m talking about your chin, neck, chest, even your back and sideburns. For some this is something that may be inherited for others it is caused by PCOS.

PCOS is Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. Many women are afflicted but not all of them have the hair growth. For me I do.

This is something I have had all my adult life and many years in my teens as well. I absolutely hate it. It’s the first thing I would change about myself if I could. However there is not a cure for PCOS and therefore I can’t get rid of the hair.

There are ways to treat it. Prescriptions, waxing, laser, electrolysis, shaving, or for those who are comfortable and in my mind courageous just let it grow.

I have done all of these options and am currently on medication to help lessen it, but it’s never truly gone.

For those of you who have hirsutism what has worked for you?

For those who do not, please be understanding, and do not mock, taunt, or bully, we are all beautiful and we are all unique.

Be strong, be beautiful, be you

Beach Bodies

We just finished the cold and snow and then we got rain, rain, and more cold rain. But finally the last few days have have hot weather! It’s crazy how one day we have 60 degree weather and the next it’s in the 90’s. One thing about the weather in Wisconsin is that it is unpredictable and we can and have had all 4 seasons in one day.

However the hot weather makes me think about cooling off on a sandy beach with turquoise water, and tropical drinks. It doesn’t take long before I think about swimming and bathing suits and beach bodies.

Yikes! I have been bold the last few times I was at a pool and wore a two piece and I was semi comfortable with that. If there was more people I would not have been able to do it.

A part of my own self care, and lifestyle improvement is to be happy with myself. So if I want to wear a two piece bathing suit, then I will. Beach bodies come in all shapes and sizes, all levels of fitness, all the colors of the people of the world. The only requirement to have a beach body is to have a body. And go to the beach.

Ladies and gentlemen, let’s encourage each other and compliment one another when we see a swimming suit we like. Or if you can’t do that, smile and keep walking. You do not know what it took for that person to get where they are.

Remember I am in your corner, I think your body is amazing, and your look fabulous!

Be strong, be beautiful, be you

Instant Pot Taco Pasta

Some things just work and the taco flavors and the comforting pasta in this dish do. Since this is an Instant Pot recipe it cooks up very quickly and you can have a hot tasty dinner in less time than it takes to boil the water.

  • Ingredients:
    • 1 pound of ground meat (beef, turkey, etc)
    • 1 yellow onion diced
    • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
    • 1-2 Tbsp taco season
    • 8 ounce can of tomato sauce
    • 1 cup mild salsa
    • 3 cups beef stock
    • 12 ounces uncooked pasta shells
    • 6 ounces cheddar cheese
    • 1/2 heavy cream
    • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Directions
    • Using the sautée feature brown the meat until no longer pink.
    • Add onion and garlic and cook until tender turn off the sautée feature.
    • Season with salt and pepper and taco seasoning. Add tomato sauce, salsa, and beef stock.
    • Pour in the pasta and do not mix. Be sure the pasta is covered with liquid. Add some water if needed.
    • Put the lid on and seal the pot. Set timer for 5 minutes. Let pot come to pressure and cook. When done release pressure quickly.
    • When pressure is released, open lid carefully and mix pasta. Add in the heavy cream and cheese. Stir until cheese is melted. Serve warm.

What’s nice is you can add more to the dish or serve it with your favorite sides.

Happy Eating!