Friday, May 31, 2013


All around, everywhere, the lush grasses and green trees...thankful for the rivers of rain...  Last year, so dry I feared we might join our sister states in sandy, stark landscapes...  This year..  Get out the canoes, it's a voyage through the Amazon Rain forest...

I haven't set the world on fire with my projects...  Perhaps the daily downpours have dampened my matches?  But not my spirit..  Here are some shots from a little trip I took to visit a friend at her camping spot...  She made us a little treat from crescent rolls, cheese and Genoa salami...  

Today is laundry, vacuum, and dusting day... All chores I like.  Have a good weekend!

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Rain on the Land

I love rain... And even a little storm...  But not much because I want safety and beauty for all around me...  But even though the farmers frown at me and shake their sad heads at my foolishness, these gray days suit me.  I will never know why.  They seem perfect to accomplish the chores of my brew something delicious, to polish and fluff a room, to sleep for an extra hour, or to read a new book...

I didn't like rain at all as a child.  Afraid of every crack of thunder, I fled to my Daddy...  I think that's why I like it so much now...  He made it all so better that I learned to love the rain. I know he didn't say anything or rock me or any of that...  Probably just a story and a little job together with my small sized tools in my blue toolbox...  I had a little anvil, a miter saw...  And the cutest hammer...

He made a bedroom from our old workshop garage...  And do you know who sleeps there, right where he stacked his precious walnut boards and a cool, Slick slab of marble waiting for its cabinet?...  Yes, you do...  My room is that bedroom...  The little window in the east was right over his tool bench...  My saddle hung right over my laptop spot...  And the double doors are my two west windows where I watch the setting moon...  And my tv sits right where he anchored his beautiful vice.

Isn't  life delicious?

Monday, May 27, 2013


My dad in WW2...  Honors to veterans today...

How did you enjoy the day today?  With long term rain, Mom and I decided against driving to all our usual cemeteries with wet, soggy fresh flowers.  We have placed the silk arrangements earlier, so we stayed home and watched some episodes of Pioneer Woman on Food Network.  Lots of fun and good looking food.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Friday, May 24, 2013

Love these Ducks...

I love to visit the Lake...  Yesterday I embraced the few moments there by watching these babies swimming happily with their Mama.  They fill my heart with fun and joy.  I love little duckies.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Heathy Breakfast.... (Nope, no typo)

It's an early, dark clouded morning.  My alarm went off at six, as usual, but instead of the little "free nap" I've been rewarding myself with, I got up and claimed a magical breakfast of hot coffee with Heath bar creamer and a square of Seven-Layer Bars (Hello Dollies).  The cocoa and calories inspired me to get busy with some overdue cleaning and decorating for Memorial Day.

Have a good one out there!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Oklahoma's Tragedy

It's always such a shock to live through today's disasters.  It is a mixed blessings this gift of immediate information, media, and messaging.  Yesterday's tornadoes rocked the Midwest with grief, fear, and bitterness...  I won't go there in this post because I just don't know what to say any more.  No amount of desensitization seems to separate the hearts of caring people from the misery of our neighbors...  And while that breeds compassion, it also brings despair.  I'm no stranger to either, but this season of anyone 's life can be also about living abundantly while we are yet able.  Did it cross your mind this morning that nearly a hundred people in Oklahoma were not awakening to the sunshine...ever again? I'm sure it did...  I struggle so with thoughts like that.

But the sunshine, cool, fresh summer winds, and the reality that "it is what it is..." quickly soaked into my being.  No amount of sympathetic grief will change yesterday.  Charitable donations will help if we are able.  Check Pioneer Woman blog on my side bar for those.  Prayer can help us, them... The world, but bitterness can block those prayers at times like these...

Well, I wasn't going to talk about it, was I?

My family is coming for supper and Spinner... Paprika chicken and roasted California Mix...  Baked potatoes and sweet potatoes...  Flatbread and pineapple for dessert...  Paleo friendly for my son.

Mom and I had a picnic on the front porch this morning... Panini and cheese curls...  Cool and windy, but fun...

Be safe.

These flowers look so beautiful, prepared for the Senior Class Commencement and stored in my old room....

Monday, May 20, 2013


Morning has broken; time for ...anything in the world I choose.  Mom and I drove through industrious Amish land Saturday on our way home from our favorite restaurant.  Exhilarated young, young men (boys, really), lying flat back against the reins of six draft horses pulling equipment to plant their fields.  Women with their little ones flying down the open roads, hair flying, in milk carts.

Today after a trip to town on errands I tackle the cavernous clothes closet in my bedroom.  Why wait for the big jobs to scream my name?  I hear their whimpers from the stacks of unloved, never-worn-lately sweaters.

We had a little breakfast of eggs, oranges, and hash browns...  I simmered a little soup for later, and we are keeping an eye to the impending storms.  Such violent weather everywhere in the Midwest last night.  My heart goes out to everyone in harm's way.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Be back soon...

I will be posting after school is officially a thing of my past! herbst
herbst pictures

Monday, May 6, 2013

El Seis de Mayo

We are celebrating Cinco de Mayo one day late in my Spanish class.  Today the eleven Spanish 1 students and I will get to travel to Macon and visit the Mexican Restaurant during Home Room, Lunch, and Spanish class.  Then I have an appointment, so I'm taking the rest of the day off.

Yesterday we had our Taco Salad party for my family.  My Paleo Tortilla Chips turned out pretty yummy...  a bit thick and hard, even though I rolled the dough out between two pieces of parchment.  They would be a good vehicle for a heavy dip.  Kind of reminded me of Wheat Thins, my favorite cracker...  except made with Almond Flour, egg whites, and olive oil plus seasonings and salt.

photo by

Sunday, May 5, 2013


 Sunday clouds sigh one last time; windy, chilled skies promise at least one more unseasonably cool rain to soak into sodden lands lying fertile, waiting for the seeds of spring.  My son brought my potted plants indoors, and I cautiously hope my lilies outdoors did not freeze...  While something me responds to gray, billowy skies, I still have the bonds with flowers forged a long time ago in my grandmothers' gardens.  Both were at home in a garden, happy with earth on their hands and hope in mind for future flowers...
 Today brings indoor jobs... Laundry, cookies baking for company later on tonight, last tucking away of snippets of Easter, and taco salads waiting in the fridge.  I feel separated already from school, and more at home amid the scurry of cloud, rain, and growing things.  God whispers calming thoughts in my darkened night, and all feels cautiously optimistic yet strange --- like mercurial lightning, thunder, and storm.

Saturday, May 4, 2013


What could be better than one last chance for chili and Cinco de Mayo....  I ask you!  We all may be shocked by the sudden drop in temperature--- even snow!  But we are planning a little Tex Mex for tomorrow.  My son has been rocking the Paleo diet for about eight months with fantastic results.  I know it's not for everyone, but he has lost over a hundred pounds plus bringing a total remission of constant gall bladder attacks on a scary, severe level.

So we will have Paleo friendly Taco Salad and chili cups.  His will be minus beans and cheese (worth crying over to me!).....

I'm making crispy nacho seasoned  onion rings for garnish...  Como se dice YUM en espanol?

Thursday, May 2, 2013

The Dance of Weather in Spring

The weather flirts with the idea of spring, tempts us with 80 degree warmth and blooms springing from every bush, branch and barrel.  Then, in a coy attempt announce its supremacy, the winds bring in cold rain, storms, possible snow in May.  Early morning, pre-dawn, my mind began a melancholy echo to the weather. 

By the time the sun should have risen, we had been deluged again with wild, windy storms through the night.   
 For early morning poetry, it's possible to simply breathe in the colors of the sky.  I prefer the twilight of evening to dawn's rosy promise.  Memories over promise, perhaps.  Rich sun drowning the land in apricot at evening...  Snippets of songs run through the mind, bringing an odd assortment of images...

Shall the day actually bring snow?  It won't be here for long, but even so...  weather again demonstrates her majesty, omnipotence, and splendor.  Little plants, you must wait in your boxes for just a while longer.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Good Morning... One Dozen, right?

I used to love the movie, Anne of a Thousand Days....  It truly made its mark on my heart, especially the soliloquy at the end...

I hope not to drone on and on about retirement for the next few days.  At least you will see an  end in sight as I have only one dozen days left to teach.  It never ends.  For example, I just shot down a student's essay, which had been copied straight from the internet...  I can't explain how it is that we old teachers just "know" something is not from their minds and skills.  Voice.  We all have a voice in what we write.  I hear it in your blogs, written from your hearts.  It's what makes us realize we could be friends if geography had put us in the same neighborhood...  It's why some blogs surface over and over again as our favorites.

And why is it that young people when caught, dead caught with the paper pulled up on Wikipedia, or in this case FREE ESSAY.COM or some such nonsense...  don't then just hang their heads and say, "Got me."  They insist they magically, miraculously came up with the exact same juxtaposition of words, phrases, and vocabulary arrangement (usually words not in their frame of reference at all.)  I have lost more battles with this than I've won.  Even with the administration and support...  Cheating is cheating.  In this case the young woman is a senior and plans to submit "her" essay to a contest for a scholarship being awarded by the family of a young soldier killed in Afghanistan.  They may not catch it.  And maybe the money will help her go on to school and be more than she is today...  At any rate, I told her the truth.  I found the paper online in about ten minutes, and I got one of my last big huffs of my career (I sincerely hope.)  Put this kind of thing on the list of why retirement sounds delicious...

And so, taking the 180 day school calendar as my multiplier, I am Gayla of the 6,660 days...  minus 12...
I feel as if I'm marching semi-awake, and semi dreamlike toward a veiled precipice...  I seem okay with it... Whether I float, flail, or flat-out fall to my demise...  I seem okay with marching right off that cliff.