Saturday, May 24, 2014

Memorial Day Medley....


Well, finally, the forces of nature aligned, and Mom and I went road tripping! We had the day to do something fun, so after our little "visit" with Ree Drummond, Pioneer Woman on the Food Channel, we were out in the cloudy May weather. First we visited the a Cemetery, stunning with fresh florals, white crosses, and proud flags. ...".


Overcast, but bright, patterns of wispy clouds created shadows and patterns on the highway to Sturgeon. Lunch at our favorite hangout, Crossroads.

Not as rosey-red as we love it, but... A spoonful of sugah will fix it.

Then, off! We had a mission today--- not just a drive, you see. We were after pie plant, better knownö as rhubarb. Mom (and I) dearly love this tart, pink, old-fashion delight. My grandmother raised huge beds of rhubarb, and remnants of these beds transplanted finally lost heart here a few tears ago with too much ice and sub-zero temps... and not enough attention, I suspect. We finally found it, along with some cold frame tomatoes and cucumber.


We visit one Amish home in particular. The sweet mother and usually a smiling, shy girl or two always come to the car and then bring us fresh vegetables from their garden and cold frame. She told my mother today about their winter, softly smiling the good news that another daughter had been born two days before Christmas. Four boys and now four girls... To a pretty woman who looks about 26... We were happy to hear her good news. Our lives have been often blest by our dear Amish friends.

Then, once home, I updated my Facebook profile pic to honor my favorite veteran, my Sweet Daddy!

So, the Memorial a day weekend began in a good way. My son is working with his adult computer programming students this weekend as they prepare for finals. But first they all attended the theater together to watch X-Men. How fun! I shot him a quick text: "Yer a fun teechur!"

Tonight I am headed to Bevier to have a fun visit and meal with friends at a new restaurant run by a former student and dear friends of mine, Coal Miner's Daughter... She named it for her a Daddy, a long-time coal miner... The old Midway restaurant became this neat catering house/café.

First look
Second look after a lot of love!
Currently. I love the little front porch she put on there!
Local coal mining history.
Following Inside shots ( photos by owner)
They have a tv for sporting events, wedding videos, etc.


Now I'm home... Ready to relax and enjoy the rain. Have a lovely weekend.




Tuesday, May 20, 2014

One Year down.....

Here's to the beginning of Year Two!
Retired and happy!


Thursday, May 15, 2014

An un-sunny day... Outside.. Full out sunshine within.

Well, when the first words from Mama are, ”Order propane. It's $1.49 a gallon, and it's 47° this morning...," I knew it would be a baking/cooking day. I just didn't have all the plans made... First, since she's the only one cold, we switched on a little furnace plus her own personalized electric fireplace... It was a Christmas 2012 gift, well worth its price! Dark day, clouds and mystery, magical recuperation... I've been needing a day such as this!
Then I had my usual morning rituals... Musing, lighting candles, watching Pioneer Woman... And a couple phone conversations with some good friends. I discovered a couple of friends shivered their happy way to a St. Louis Cardinal baseball game. Momentary self-pity, I must admit.

Then... One awful, ......awful lunch of leftovers. Everyone has that now and then, I suppose. So I vowed to wow my mom for a little special supper, just for us two. I made home made bread, using the bread maker through the dough cycle. It is sooo much better than baking the whole way in the machine. I can't explain why, but just try it if you are at all unhappy with your bread machine loaves. After the bread goes through the Dough cycle ( right before the last rising), turn out on lightly floured parchment paper and knead just a few strong times. Pat into a rectangle and roll into a loaf. Lightly score the top with a sharp knife, one long, light gash lengthwise. Spray with olive oil spray. Spray parchment after shaking excess flour into trash and place lightly on top. Cover with thick towel. Set on stove top that is warming to 350°. After about an hour (mine only took 45 minutes, but my stove was already baking cupcakes...) bake on bottom rack with plenty of space at 350° for 30 minutes. Let cool before cutting

Made spaghetti with semi-homemade sauce, and a fruit jar of iced tea with lemon.

And made German chocolate cupcakes... Mom and I like to leave the frosting off... Or maybe a little half 'n half Nutella and creamy Skippy peanut butter.

There. That should teach them to go to a Cardinals game!  Just kidding. I'm very happy they had that opportunity.  I was invited, but there was no way to go without a lot of walking. Just a no-can-do, and that's that! I have lots of opportunity to do fun outings with these dear friends... 

Then a few minutes playing with some of the Paris elements in my dressing/bathroom.

It's getting late, and I'm ready for "cozying in" for a little nighttime television... 

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Best Friends

So... Whoosh! Our dear ones will be gone to the airport early Sunday morning, such a short visit.. Happy hugs, little smiles, goodbye bear hugs...... and a few tears...just a few.


Thursday night. Friday night. Good little visit. Say what you must, but Facebook has managed to help keep us connected. We see little glimpses of the life they live in Dublin, and he gets a touch of "home." There is a long, long history of friendship between this young man and my son. They were friends like "brothers from another mother" buddies their whole little boy, teen, now adult life. Some truly sad and unfortunate circumstances befell this young teen, and one day he came to our house and stayed all night on a visit... Then another night. I don't remember a formal event that signaled the official decision, but he moved in to stay! And we were so happy to welcome him to our homes, our Christmases, our family. He has nice parents, but I claim him, too.

When he married his online sweetheart, from the Emerald Isle, we hugged goodbye and keep in touch, but this was our first real live visit. We love her, too! She's beautiful, sassy, another family member of the heart

Look! Sweets from a delicious Dublin chocolatier! Oh, yes, there are always gifts and goodies! Stay tuned for a peek at the gifts for Mama and me.


I know we will have other visits, but I'm not sure when... But when I hear the word "Dublin," my heart has to smile.. For a couple parts of it have a little home and a "wee dog" named Archie there on its streets...



Goodnight! My sweet bed is calling my name...



Wednesday, May 7, 2014

To my Blog Sisters... And friends.

The wind chimes outdoors remind me it's suddenly summer... And really quite warm! We have much happening here. Tomorrow we are having a supper for The friend of my son's who married a girl from Ireland and now lives there in Dublin. They will be here in the area only three or four days.

My son is unwell... Looks like a chronic thing with the lymphatic system. Lymphedema. Cellulitis. Maybe not super serious yet, but an issue to address... He, being his mother's son, is 33 and not accustomed and not inclined to self-doctoring, to caring for himself. As I've mentioned, he took his health seriously and has lost nearly 300 pounds. Being so heavy possibly, probably irritated and initiated the disease. But he's a healthy weight now. That will definitely make this easier. But sadly, lymphatic damage seems to be irreversible. Our doctor is very good about researching. My son hopes to deal with it locally, not go to specialists ( who seem more geared to post cancer patients). For now, that's where we are. I'll be frank. I feel so sad. Not hopeless. Not at all defeated. The future, never guaranteed, never secure... Just stumbled a little. I hate this for him. And I, feel bad for my mom. Unsettling post, I'm afraid. My apologies. Oatmeal and Whimsy is the kind of Blog I created, to be intentionally positive, truly looking for the uplifting... However, I feel too close to you girls to hoard this setback in private. Thanks for listening, dears.

I have a lot to do, but I was awake into the dawn last night... I'll get that party happening... Tomorrow...


Saturday, May 3, 2014

Birthday Garden Party


Last night was a birthday party for one of my dear friends. We got together, the three of us who used to run around on day trips and called ourselves Thelma and Louise and Louise! First we checked out a new local restaurant. And then home to Mom's so she could join the fun.


I did a little garden theme. Used garden gloves to hold the silverware and napkins. The cupcakes were carrot raisin with caramel filling and icing. Had a cracker dip and tried the new Ritz bacon crackers. My friend brought chocolate dipped strawberries!! And we had sugared pecans. Yum!


In the center of the table is a really old set of my Grandmother's... Delft blue Dutch sugar bowl, salts and peppers, and the little maid who gardens there among the windmills...

We really enjoyed the celebration!