Friday, July 25, 2008

Funny . . .

I dislike unloading the dishwasher. I can load it and have no problem washing by hand. But for some UN-known reason, I just don't like to unload the dishwasher and put them away. If I wash by hand, I still put the dishes away, no problemo. As a matter of fact, if there's clean dishes in the dishwasher; I'll still wash by hand. Sometimes, I even set the dishes I'm washing, on top of the dishes in the dish washer to dry. Of course then, I'm faced with the problem of putting them away.
Now to the funny bit . . . the previous is just bizarre.  Just a few moments ago, my husband and I had a late breakfast lunch.  He took his plate to the sink and asked, Is the dishwasher "clean or dirty?" Which I responded, "Clean and empty." I just run the dishwasher and put the dishes away!"  Jim -Geez! "That's a pretty big event, why don't you post that on your blog." Me - You can laugh now. . hee hee
Today's dishes were easy. The rest of the time I force myself or leave them.

LOL This was on me---"Remember laughter is the best medicine." Maybe tomorrow I'll post what my husband did to me.

Proverbs 17:22 A happy heart is good medicine and a cheerful mind works healing, but a broken spirit dries up the bones.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Blueberry Heaven ~

I was so excited! Contemplating the morning after hearing; "Let's go pick blueberries. I had to put on special socks to celebrate the occasion. Don't laugh, they're quite comfortable and very much ME. . . We went to Voytko's U-PICK Farm just a mile down the road from us. I went last year; the weather wasn't kind to the blueberry season at all. As a matter of fact, it wasn't kind to the bees either, for there was a shortage of honey -- this wasn't good at all concidering how much we love blueberries and honey. Dogs encluded.
This was my second time going to Voytko's "U - PICK" farm. You pay a little but the rewards are wonderful I love it. I don't know why I hadn't been there more often, though I'm sure it was some stupid reason.
This year I decided to take my camera, in hopes to get some great pictures. I'm so glad I did. I took so many it was hard to choose which pictures I wanted to post. I still ended up posting more than needed but I truly wanted to share our wonderful day. Even though the idea of picking was wonderful, the best part of the day was going with my husband Jim.

Words truly can't described how beautiful the day was. So much so I couldn't come up with a good title. I did however, come up with many ideas for one.

The Wonderful Diversion, or

A Sea of Beautiful Blue, or how about --

Bountiful Beautiful Blessings.

"Pickens weren't slim this year!" As you can see the berries were plump and "delicious". You could say I love them. . . We picked a total of 19 pounds with still tons more to ripen as you can see in the top photo, YUM. Sophie wanted some too, the dogs actually love them.

If you live in a area that has U - Pick farms that you can enjoy the day out picking, do yourself a favor and take advantage of it, you'll be so happy you did. And, what do you do with 19 pounds of blueberries . . . ENJOY THEM . . . maybe I'll post some blueberry recipes as long as we don't eat them first. V

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Congratulations Joe!

We moved to Tucson, Arizona in 1990, the boys were pretty young then. We all made very dear friends, which we keep close to our hearts. Occasionally we hear from them and them from us. The boys made a friend almost the second we moved in; his name in 1990 was Joey. Not that he’s changed his name or anything like that; just that I believe he might prefer being called Joe. We’ve always love Joe like a son, and were so happy when he recently got married to a beautiful sweet young woman, Stephanie Bible. Joey lived in the corner house just down the street from us and seemed excited to learn that the new neighbors included boys his own age. He quickly befriended Jake and Aaron and soon the three bonded like brothers – they were inseparable – as these pictures show. Since Matt was somewhat older, he was more like an older brother, but a brother nonetheless.
I have so many fond memories I could share -- like how they'd ride their bikes to the “whoopee dos” by the Rillito River. The Rillito River is a dry riverbed most of the year except during the summer monsoons. Anyway the “whoopee dos” were a series of hilly dirt trails and row upon row huge dirt piles they would ride (or push) their bikes up and ride them down as fast as their legs could take them. It’s the fast ride down and the “whoopee dos” way it made your stomach feel that were named from. The piles of dirt at the whoopee dos brings to mind another one of their favorite activities – Digging in dirt! They loved digging in dirt, making forts and playing army. Sometimes when we would go to visit my Dad in Safford, Arizona, Joey would get to come along. All the guys would hit the trails for a hike to a nearby mesa for hiking but mostly for digging who knows what?

When we moved to New Mexico the guys were bummed out to say the least, on the bright side Joey was able visit us a few times. I remember that on his very first visit, we had no sooner arrived home from the airport, when Joey disappeared. I looked out the window and he was down in the yard a ways digging in an ant pile. By his next visit, they were all in their teens. Wow, how time flies!

Soon after that visit (there might have been a year in between), Matt enlisted into the Navy and less than year later Jake headed into the Coast Guard. Aaron soon followed Jake into the Coast Guard.

Joey, like his dad became a Tucson Firefighter. That was the last time they were all together, except when Jake got married.

It’s hard to believe that it’s been over five years since they’ve all been together at Jake’s wedding. I know my boys miss their buddy, and wished they could’ve made it to his wedding. One thing’s for sure, when they do hook up, it will be like old times - without digging in dirt. That is unless maybe they're doing something that might require a ditch. Ha-ha, LOL.

Love to you both, Joe and Stef. Congratulations again, we pray that your lives together well be filled with all of God's blessings.

We love and miss you Joe.

A friend loves at all times,

Proverbs 17:17

Sunday, July 20, 2008

On Top of The World. . .

How many of us can say . . . I've been to the North Pole. I can't , but our son can. Just got these in and had to share a few pictures with you. Our son Mat is stationed on the USS Providence (SSN 719). I can't even imagine how immense and beautiful.

Mat and Sub.

Leonardo eat you heart out!

And you thought he wasn't real, but a bit on the thin . . . Mat thought he was a myth. LOL

Saturday, July 19, 2008

A Lovely Evening Out ~

There's much to be said about ladies getting together and enjoying each others company. And, it's exactly what some of us did from church Friday evening. I hadn't been to one of their campfire dinners before and have to say I thoroughly enjoyed myself.

The ladies at Cornerstone, occasionally get together and have a campfire dinner once a year. It should be more often, but it probably works out fine due to all the busy schedules everyone seems to have. You might even enjoy it more since it's spaced out from other activities. Like anticipating a gift coming your way.

The weather was good and the food was yummy. I made an Tabouleh with Quinoa (recipe will follow) as well as small tortillas.

The best part about the evening, was getting a chance to share with other women and see how their faith has grown in the Lord. And, for me (since I can't speak for others) getting a chance to hear from others and their experiences. A priceless BLESSING.

Michelle Miller was our lovely hostess. We were blessed with scripture verses she shared. The text she choose was from Philippians 4:6-8.

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let you requests be made known to God.
And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, shall guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Finally, brethren, whatever is true , whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise let your mind dwell on these things.

And finally; what would a campfire dinner be without a campfire. Michelle's husband had a nice fire going, but most of us headed home before we could enjoy it. I'm hoping Michelle and her family took advantage of the time.


Tabouleh (of middle eastern cookery) is a salad of fine-ground bulgur, parsley, tomatoes, green onions, mint, olive oil, and lemon juice. It is typically eaten wrapped in a leaf of lettuce. In American it's often served with pita bread as a dip.

When I finally decided what I wanted to make, I didn't have bulgur. So I decided to use Quinoa in its place. I'm happy I did. I thought it was yummy and light. Perfect for summer. I serve mine with small tortillas I made. I just doubled the batch. Tortilla recipe is on this site.

Quinoa [KEEN-wah] from the goosefoot (Chenopodium) grown as a crop primarily for its edible seeds and is glutin free. I can't even begin to explain, even in simple terms what "goosefoot" is. But the seeds are awesome and can be used in many ways. I used Inca Red Quinoa for Ancient Harvest. check it out this site very interesting and has recipes. The site has a Tabouleh recipe but I made up my own that is similar. If I had seen this site earlier, I would've made their recipe.


1 cup Inca Red Quinoa (cooks in 15 min.) or wheat bulgar. Prepared as directed on package.

1 cucumber diced - I partially pealed

diced scallions to taste / I used 4-5 diced green garlic

10 diced cherry tomates

1 bunch fresh parsley, chopped

a handful of chopped fresh mint (or to taste)


extra virgin olive oil (I started with small amount, 1/2 Tbsp then added as needed)

juice from 1 lemon (depending on the how much juice you get, mix a little at a time)

Cook Quinoa as directed, cool. Add all but parsley and mint. Mix or fluff together well. As for the oil and lemon, you want it moist but not drippy wet. The lemon is your all try a little at a time I use all the juice but 1/2 -1 tsp. ( What's neat about this dish is - you can adjust it to your own taste). Once mixed let set in the frig for 3-4 hours. Mix in parsley and mint just before serving. Serve with fresh lettuce leaves or flat bread of some kind.

*If you use bulgar use the cooking instructions on its package. You would also want to use fine bulgar.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Weaning ~

As you can see by just looking at this blog, I love birds. I get so much enjoyment from watching birds. And, out of all the places I’ve lived, I’ve been blessed with more variety of birds here, over the past few years. I can’t believe I’m saying this, since Ohio isn’t necessarily my most favorite place. I actually have a list of “favorite places" I’ve lived, Ohio is usually at the bottom, but occasionally moves up. I’ll leave a discussion of my "favorite places" to another post. Although it’s very possible I’ve become a more observant and skilled bird watcher. Hee hee

As many of you have read or know from speaking with me of the “move.” And, since I’m an avid bird watcher from heart, I did what most would do when you move to a place. Get bird feeders. Some would argue about feeding the birds or not. I imagine it’s best to leave them to the wild and continue on as nature intended. That’s hard for me since I enjoy watching them as much as I do. At the beginning of Spring I gradually started cutting back on feed; this was also due to the cost. But, since we haven’t done anything as of late, watching birds is also our form of entertainment. So I kept up a couple feeders and I started purchasing less of a variety in the feed department. Then a few weeks ago not replacing what had run out.

I have been feeding several Downing woodpeckers for years now; I’ve even held one in my hand. Their food was the first to go. I had suet mixed with peanuts for them. They loved it as well as the Nuthatch and Titmouse. I figured that they would pick at the other seed which they did many times and that’s what they did. Most mornings the woodpeckers, as well as nuthatches, would sit on my deck and wait for me. The funniest were the chickadees that were more vocal. They actually sounded like they were scolding me at times; as to what was taking so long. Now, in the mornings they learned to wait till I put the feeders back out. Every evening we had a visiting raccoon that would come and eat the seeds; I’d take the feeders down after the last of the birds would leave. Then put them out again early in the morning and for a couple months now. You might be thinking? . “Man is she dedicated,” no, I just love watching birds and care about them. They’ve become like my own. Even though the young raccoon was cute, I had to discourage his nightly activities. For the most part he’d just sit there while I’d explain that the food wasn’t for him. I guess animals like me too. You can learn a lot from them as well as the birds. But, I’ll get to that in a bit. The Downing’s had the hardest time of it, they actually started sitting on the humming bird feeder trying to get stuff out. The hummer was having an awful time chasing off such a large bird. But, he was giving it his best shot. Two days ago the Downing’s stopped coming, except for one. I think she’s on a sugar high, (another issue) and yesterday was the end of all the feed. Except for the hummer’s food that’s it.

To me this “weaning,” is sad but, something that had to be done. It’s much like when God has to wean us to move on. Moving on is hard and sometimes we just don’t want to do so. You would like nothing more than to keep them close to you and for things not to change. But, in these circumstances, if you love them enough you do what’s best and really do let them go. God wants us to grow and move on. Doing what He has predestined all along.

1 Corinthians 14:20:Brethren, do not be children in your thinking; yet in evil be infants, but in your thinking be mature.

Ephesians 4:15:
But speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ,

1 Corinthians 3:2:
I gave you milk to drink, not solid food; for you were not yet able to receive it. Indeed, even now you are not yet able,

How many of us are like this Downing Woodpecker? Not ready to be weaned or move on.

Of course this is my analogy, using and learning from the birds. Tell me what you think and if you have a scripture to add.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Just Stuff I Like ~

I don't know how many times you may have moved, it seems like we move a lot. Now my husband would say different. And, he is right. When we were in the Coast Guard; we moved a lot. A lot. . . After we got out, we did moved of course for job purposes. The places we've lived the longest were, New Mexico and Ohio. Some other places we lived were, AZ, CA, NC, OR, WA, VA, and I was born in PA. So many people don't even leave the state they were born in. I guess you could say I've been on an adventure most of my life.
There's something about moving. And, whether you live in a big house or small - there's STUFF.
And boxes of it. We have stuff that we hadn't even unpacked from the last move. It's nice to know though, there are some things we don't have to box up this time.
When you move you can and do collect stuff. Some of the stuff you might collect isn't all junk either. I'm reminded of Hector the Collector, by Shel Siverstein. Now, I might not have collected some of the things that Hector did. But then again, hummm . . .I have been known to collect rocks of all sorts, glitter, insulators, door knobs. Things I can be creative with and more. I've been known to tote around things from others also. Like birdbaths and a little rusty pot-belly stove (no bottom and has only half a door). I find stuff too like fossils - not just rocks. I collect boxes and paper and paper in boxes. Fabric up the wazoo! Buttons too! Cups and some even with saucers. Books and tons of them, all which I plan to read. Maybe I'd have time if I wasn't collecting or moving. I think if I had a favorite, it might be glass and other shiny things. I don't know exactly when I started liking them. I do know it has something to do when I was little. There used to be two squared pillars that neighbors of my grandmothers made. They were all white with bits and pieces of colored glass. To a kid it was a treasure. And, when the sun kissed it man oh man. . . I wonder if I'm the only one who remembers that? I think that started the collecting business.
The Bible talks about treasures. In Matthew 6:19 “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
This is so true; the treasures you store in heaven are far greater. I do like things I seem to collect. Most of it has no value or importance other than to me. It's really just stuff. And, nothing that important that it keeps me away from what is. Jesus is most definitely the truest of treasures.
But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. (NASB) Matt. 6:33-34

by Shel Silverstein

Hector the Collector
Collected bits of string,
Collected dolls with broken heads
And rusty bells that would not ring.
Pieces out of picture puzzles,
Bent-up nails and ice-cream sticks,
Twists of wires, worn-out tires,
Paper bags and broken bricks.
Old chipped vases, half shoelaces,
Gatlin' guns that wouldn't shoot,
Leaky boats that wouldn't float
And stopped-up horns that wouldn't toot.
Butter knives that had no handles,
Copper keys that fit no locks,
Rings that were too small for fingers,
Dried-up leaves and patched-up socks.
Worn-out belts that had no buckles,'
Lectric trains that had no tracks,
Airplane models, broken bottles,
Three-legged chairs and cups with cracks.
Hector the Collector
Loved these things with all his soul
Loved them more than shining diamonds,
Loved them more than glistenin' gold.
Hector called to all the people,
"Come and share my treasure trunk!"
And all the silly sightless people
Came and looked...and called it junk.