Monday, July 30, 2012

Pink, cool thoughts on a hot summer's day

Once upon a time.....  We had a little cake on a hot summery day...  The fresh, pink icing swirled just so....  Somewhere my gramma had found the little round sprinkles that barely stick on without rolling all over the gray, Formica-topped table...

Large spiraled bottles of Double-Cola, the off-brand of choice in our family, sat open, ready to pour on the ice cracked from aluminum trays.   Multicolor aluminum glasses would soon hold court over the party.  Our family spared the cola, just one precious half bottle per afternoon.... If any at all.

------ and then that happiest of little cake parties is gone, vanished......  Should I stand like that long ago little girl, clutch my heart, and cry the forsaken, left alone and lost sob of a scared child?  Probably not...

In place instead are other treats, other parties, other dear ones to share our lives....
Memories are gifts to help us, not debilitate with sorrow, nostalgia, regret....
Enjoy....  it's so short a ride.....

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Summer Faire

Oh, can anyone ever compare the grocery produce to the summertime tomatoes, sweetcorn, zucchini.....  and melons!  Toast, butter, and a sliced tomato....  food for the gods!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Netflix ..... and moi!

The Rebound

 Queen to Play

Romantics Anonymous

So, for my final month before school starts I resumed my Netflix account...  So far, I am 3 for 3 on winners...  2 French movies  (The chess one is French; this cover is German) with subtitles and a October/May romance....

Thursday, July 19, 2012


I am spending these hot days in the house...  Mom and I are sorting through cabinets, drawers, boxes....  totes.  I have been waxing furniture and doing a seasonal scrub..... a la Allison from beautiful Brocante Home. 

 I purchased her Superstar download package, and it is really awesome....  Allison is a dear blogfriend...  the very first time I ever heard of a blog was the morning I googled Sarah Ban Breathnacht, author of Simple Abundance.... I found Allison from England, and we have been kindred spirits for the years since then....!  These downloads are full of prettiness, practical help, laughter...  I am having a wonderful time.  They are worth every penny and more! It's as if a dear friend has written an inspirational letter from her heart to yours....  and she is helping make home keeping the treasure it should be.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

I am a Rock Star!

Tonight I created a yummy individual zucchini casserole.  First I  diced one zucchini and 2 medium farmer's market tomatoes.  I simmered those in 1 and 1/2 c, water, 1/2 stick butter, 1 t. pepper, 1 T. Italian seasoning, 1 t. minced garlic.  When the zucchini was tender, I added a pkg. of Stovetop Dressing mix.  I spooned it into the ramekins and topped with 2 oz. cheddar.  I baked it at 350 for 30 minutes.....  It was really soothing to our jangled spirits. ----  Be impressed. It is absolutely all I accomplished all day.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

We need this....

Father God, we humbly ask for a good, soaking rain...  Amen!

Friday, July 6, 2012

A Day to Stay Home

 The temperature reached 107 today...  so it was a day to Stay in and tinker...  First I took my birthday cards and punched a hole in the corners and created a little flip bundle.... Now they will hang on a little peg by my bed.

Then I tackled the under cabinet from kitchen sink

 Before....  Lots of items...

 This sink is as old as I am....  29 years!  ha ha!  Try double that.
Looks still the same!  But all clean, and stuff is in baskets.  I pitched two trash bags full!

Time for lunch and our reward for cleaning.  My idea of a treat was stuffed tomatoes....

A scrumptious day......


Guess what we are doing?  Here in the Midwest the temperatures are over 100, we haven't had rain in weeks....  Farmers, Mom included, wait holding our breath...  We scan the rows of brave soybeans... for if they begin to yellow before they fill out their beans .....  it will be too late for the rains to help.  Corn yellows in the fields, curing and tousling at two feet tall....  but no ears on the stalks.  It's bad.  Really bad.

But priorities keep it all in focus.  Health, loved ones, and optimism keep it all in focus.  I think next week will bring a nice rain.  My dad always asked for a rain for his birthday, and more often than not, he got one....

In the meantime I am working through some ideas to make the kitchen scrumptious...  Long ago I started purposefully to live a beautiful life...  Even more today, when outside forces aren't conducive to celebrating real gifts in the ordinary, I embrace the little things.  Thank you, Lord, for the beauty of right now... Send your blessed rain in any form we most need and please help me to drink from the right well....

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

A Gentle Fourth....

Shhh!  America is sleeping....  but quite rightly, now is the very day, hour, minute we must wake up and take back some control over what and who is dominating our sweet land.......

Happy Birthday, Lady Liberty!

 A slower look at the land we love...  Saturday's drive through Amish Country brought us some divine garden produce we are having today to celebrate Independence Day...
 Irony:  that vignettes so picturesque cannot be photographed with respect to these sweet individuals.... I don't take faces in my photos...

 Happy Fourth of July, wherever your road takes you....
Pioneer Woman's Comfort Meatballs ---  A perfectly lovely choice.  Check out her blog for photos and comments here


  • 1-½ pound Ground Beef
  • ¾ cups Oats
  • 1 cup Milk
  • 3 Tablespoons Very Finely Minced Onion
  • 1-½ teaspoon Salt
  • Plenty Of Ground Black Pepper, to taste
  • _____
  • 1 cup All-Purpose Flour (coating For Frozen Meatballs)
  • Canola Oil
  • _____
  • 1 cup Ketchup
  • 2 Tablespoons Sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons Vinegar
  • 2 Tablespoons Worcestershire
  • 4 Tablespoons (to 6 Tablespoons) Onion
  • 1 dash Tabasco

Preparation Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Combine all meatball ingredients. Roll into medium-small balls and place on a cookie sheet. Place sheet in freezer for five minutes.
After 5 minutes, remove meatballs from freezer and immediately dredge in unseasoned flour.
Brown meatballs in canola oil until just brown. Place into a baking dish.
Combine all sauce ingredients. Pour over meatballs and bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Serve with egg noodles, mashed potatoes, or crusty French bread.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

My personal Mayberry....

 Celebrities pass away nearly every week...  and most of us have a few we truly love, and when those are gone from this earth, sometimes the passing is shocking, sudden, too soon...

Today, when I saw the little notes on Facebook that told me Andy Griffith had died, I just felt sad.  First, I knew my mother would feel really bad.  She doesn't like a lot of stars any more, and she and Daddy watched Andy's reruns every single day...  They loved Andy, Opie, Aunt Bea---- and Mom loved Barney (Don Knotts).

When I told her today, she just quietly said, "Oh, no.....I've been thinking about him so much lately...."

Andy Griffith was such a symbol of our childhood...  and of our parents' golden days.  When he was at his prime, my parents were right there, too...  I could count on Andy the way I counted on them to know what to do, to try what they knew, and to fix the problems in a gentle, homespun way...  I loved the way Andy dealt with conflict and all the range of emotions his family and friends threw at him...  He wasn't perfect, but he sure kept his kindness whenever he could...  He always reminds me of my Daddy...  never causing a fight, never giving up...  always giving life the best chance it could have.

Mayberry living is the dream we have of life among friends in a village filled with love, morality, and kindness..... I personally live in a kind of Mayberry, and when something shatters that ideal, I just slip over to dwell in my own emotionally soothing Mayberry where life is a whole lot sparklier!

Other celebrities have broken my heart and torn me apart with their passing, such as Princess Diana and a few more...  But Andy didn't do any of that. Not good, old Andy..... He just whistled his way across that bridge with that little boy and their fishing pole, taking my perfect childhood just a bit more over to the other side.