Monday, June 27, 2016

fit for a queen

I could not think of a more fitting way to celebrate Judith's years of hosting Mosaic Monday 
than by posting about a tea party that was--almost--fit for a queen.
And changing my font color to lavender.
I helped to host a retirement tea for a colleague and friend who was, uh, yes, retiring.
By the time we put together our bits and pieces we
had a lovely event that I think she appreciated.
I concluded we need more such celebrations. 
Thank you Judith for your years of hosting MM. 
I hope you enjoy this "virtual" tea party
with these photos in your honor!

Friday, June 24, 2016

five sounds of comfort

1. The sound of a lawn mower. Why? I've pondered that. Could it be knowing
there will be a tidy lawn when the noise stops?
2. The sound of tires on gravel. Why? Life is happening. Either
I or someone else is coming or going.
And, half the time it includes anticipation.
3. When waking in the house of a friend, or a bed and breakfast, 
the distant sound of clinking dishes (enhanced by the scent of coffee.)
Why? Someone else, not me, is preparing breakfast. 
4. The night sound of crickets.
Why? This takes me back to my childhood when we slept with our windows open
during summer nights. We would sleep with our head at the foot of the
bed--apparently it was cooler that way--and the sound of crickets
filled the night air. 
5. The hum, singing or chatter of a child deeply content at play.
Why? It's a good clue all is well.

When I mowed the lawn this morning I thought about sounds 
of comfort. There's more than five I can think of.
 How about you?



Monday, June 20, 2016

more on bliss

I called ahead to request a quiet table for four
in a popular noisy Thai restaurant. Reluctantly they said
they'd save one when I mentioned "birthday," though
it's not their usual practice.
Three friends and I have a long-held tradition of celebrating our combined
birthdays by eating lunch out twice a year.
Sometimes it seems a long time between, so this time we
decided to start celebrating some "un-birthdays" so that we will meet more frequently.
As often happens, it can end up with two conversations
going on at the same time between the four of us.
I was thinking how nice it might be if we shared specifically about our lives,
 talking all four together. Kiddingly I said,
"Since I reserved a table for us, I'd like to bring up a topic for discussion."
The others were good with the idea.
Since my recent post on bliss, I've had the subject on my mind, so I suggested we
go around the table and share our bliss, or what, at this stage of life, brings joy.
And we added, "What would we would do if we had $25-50 dollars a week to spend
frivolously (though we knew that would never be.)
It was amazing to see what happened. As each of us shared,
of course there were rabbit trails, but they brought up interesting discussions.
And for sure we learned more about each other than we knew before!
Most interesting to me is that each one of us found
bliss in being able to stay puttering at home for a whole day!
 Our pleasant conversation lingers with me as if a sweet aftertaste,
and I think it will be with me for a long time to come.

Friday, June 17, 2016

5 Table Elements

1. Tablecloth found at garage sale reminds me of Africa.
2. Butter keeper found at a charity shop.
A well beneath holds water or ice for keeping butter cold.
3. Gifted salt and pepper on the table more for charm than use.
4. Very vintage salt cellars from my MIL are used to hold teabags after steeping.
5. The green of lettuce on my G.Will Churchill dishes enhances the table.
A bed for chicken salad to rest upon.
But more than any pretties on the table, it's about those that put aside the 
stresses of a day and sit around the table, sharing a meal and celebrating friendship. 

Joining Amy's Five on Friday.

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

hodge podge a first

1. If you could sit beside and/or jump in any lake in the whole 
wide world today, which lake would you choose and why?
Lake Lure in North Carolina, a man-made lake. We used to share an old house 
there with four other families and our kids "grew up" there in the summers. 
 So many happy memories.
2. What's your favorite 'fruity' drink?
Blueberry iced tea. 



3. I read a list here of thirteen things to do right now to simplify your life. 
They were:
clean as you go, re-evaluate your relationships (cut toxic ties), unsubscribe (too many blogs and websites), de-clutter, write down your daily goals, reply to emails right away, forget multi-tasking, create a morning routine, re-evaluate your commitments (which hobbies and respon-sibilities are most important to you), say no, clean up your computer, and plan your day ahead

Which of the tasks listed do you currently find most helpful in keeping life simple? Which item on the list should you adopt in order to simplify your life this month? 


I try to clean as I go,  still learning to say no, but not nearly as hard as it used to be. Cleaning up my computer and clearing out websites and blogs is on my list just as is cleaning out closets and getting rid of things. Jotting a list of things to do for the 
next day makes for fun checking off the next day and giving me a sense 
(true or false) of accomplishing things! 

4. What did you do the summer after you graduated from high school?
Continued working in a nursing home. Lots of good experience for when I studied nursing.



5. Are you a fan of podcasts? If so what's a favorite?
Not into them much, but listen to The World and Everything In It 
each morning if I remember.

6. Do you think today's fathers have it harder, easier, or just different than fathers in the past?
Probably the same though the challenges may be different.
 Dads are certainly more involved in caring 
for babies and house hold tasks than my father's generation was.


7. Tell us one way you're like your father? 
Or not at all like your father if that's easier?
I am almost a clone of my mother, but my sister often says, "You sound just like Dad." 
I do have some of his traits including love of history, 
family history and being sentimental.
He also introduced me to Jesus.

8. Insert your own random thought here.
This is my first hodgepodge. I've always enjoyed reading others, 
and this is one where I had some answers, 
so thought I'd give it a try!


(sorry the formatting went nuts tonight).
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Sunday, June 12, 2016

My bliss

Apparently I once entered a contest naming three things I considered bliss. 
At least I found the scrap of paper and apparently did not win any prize for my thoughts. 
But I think I would name the same three again:
1. Abandoning the main route, meander along country roads, rolling down windows and breathing deeply fresh air. Appreciating God's creation and man's labor showing itself in lush green crops 
and bales of neatly stacked hay. Pass picturesque farmhouses and pristine hamlet churches, 
later returning to the main highway, wondrously refreshed.
2. Sharing a cup of tea with a friend.
3. Getting to stay home on a rainy day.

Would any of these be on your list?





Tuesday, June 07, 2016

a little dab will do

Yes, chocolate. Ganache, actually.
When I had lunch at a friend's house and she served this dessert,
I just had to try it. She had purchased the ganache but
I thought I would try making it.
 I googled it, of course, and found and adapted a Martha S. recipe.
So easy it was done in a few minutes. I lightly sprayed a small pie plate.
Brought one cup of heavy cream just to a boil over medium high heat.
Then poured that over a package of semi sweet chocolate chips,
added a dash of kosher salt and about 1/4-1/2 tsp vanilla and let it sit.
No stirring.
After ten minutes I stirred it gently until it had turned to shiny chocolate,
poured it in the pan and wrapped it well in the freezer once it had cooled.
It turned out perfectly, to my standards.
Just a little dab will do you.
It slowly starts to melt and intertwine with the fruit.
So good!

Friday, June 03, 2016

Hold the Phone!

As I was thinking of a title I could hear my father saying, 
"Hold the phone!" 
I don't hear that expression used often anymore,
but it certainly was one of his.
It's means "slow down a minute."

Most of us probably hold our phones a lot more than we used to. 
My phone has become my camera, alarm clock and even flashlight.
But sometimes I like to put it far out of reach. 
I like texted photos.  Here's some from this week.
I took some flag photos on Monday, but it took some time for the breeze to catch it just right. 
It also caught this great view of our neighbors' house, so I texted it to them 
since they were out of town, saying hello on Memorial Day.
The grands and I went to a gym open play time. They were non-stop
for a full hour. I'm sure I was the only one over 40 there, but I did see some
of my young friends with their kids which was nice.
(Needless to say, I came home exhausted!)
Grandson jumped on a blow up surf board and pleaded,
"Take a picture for Daddy, Grandma"
So we did and I sent it off into the air.
There's lots of construction at our church right now and I couldn't help
texting Grandson a picture of this cable going into the ground. 
At nearly 5, he's interested in all such things.
Of course his dad would have to show him the picture. Let's hope he did!
My sister lives where these don't grow so I texted her a picture,
sending her a virtual bouquet.
She was up north for a wedding and texted me a
picture of the house we lived in during our teen and college years.
How we loved that rambling old house. It looks exactly the same.

And that's five texted photos for Five on Friday.

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