Wednesday, February 29, 2012


I went into Chicago yesterday on a culinary tour.  I'll be doing that over and over again.  I loved it.  Living in a small town limits you to so many things.  You have to travel to shop for any special item.  I have been dreaming of my Grandma's sweetbreads for a very long time and I got them yesterday at a meat market in Chicago.  Instead of "like a child in a candy shop", I was a child in a meat shop (aka butcher shop in my day). This weekend I will be bringing back a sweet memory as I eat sweetbreads and remember my trips to Grandma and Granddads farm.  It takes at least 24 hours to prep them because you have to soak them in salt water so I have to be patient and wait, but all good things come to those who wait.

I inherited my love of cooking, my diabetes, and my size from Grandma.  She was a great cook and baker.  Granddad was a butcher so they always had meat and potatoes at every meal.  Lots of strange meats were introduced to me as a child.  I remember eating snapping turtle, tongue, brains and anything else that Granddad brought home.  They raised 13 kids so nothing ever went to waste.  Funny sweetbreads are now considered a real gourmet delicacy.

I remember the bacon drippings that always sat on the stove in a coffee can.  Grandma would make milk gravy out of all the meat drippings.  If we had potatoes we had milk gravy.  Oh those pies she made every week.   Ok, now I'm hungry.  I haven't had my breakfast yet, so will end for now.  Have a great day.

Be happy, eat well,  and may God bless you and yours.

Dare to Grow


Tomorrow Awaits

Rid yourself of things that anchor you down and prevent you from being happy.  We all carry around things that we need to rid ourselves of.  What ever it is that is holding you down or holding you back remember the past is the past.  My favorite saying is “Yesterday was yesterday, but yesterday is over. Today is today, and tomorrow awaits.”  I now live in the present moment which allows so much more happiness.

Don't Stop Questioning

Don’t stop questioning because that is how you get answers in life.  Life is more complex than ever and we must keep questioning.  No one person on this earth has the answers so you need to listen and listen some more to make intelligent life decisions.  I have said that I often end up making decisions based on what my heart says, but first I gather information to inform my heart and mind.  My poor decisions in life were usually based on lack of information so keep on asking who, what, why, when, and where.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Something Wonderful


Like Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz, we forget that we must believe to make it happen.  If you don’t believe, your heart is not in it and it can not and will not happen.  Keep repeating to yourself, I do believe, I do believe and your mind and heart will follow.  You have to make it happen.  You are responsible for your dreams and happiness. 

Comfort Zone

We all seem to strive to be comfortable when in fact we need to change that way of thinking.  If we get too comfortable and get complacent about life we stop growing and searching for experiences our lives need to find happiness. Make a point of getting outside your comfort zone and wonderful things can happen to you.  Adventure awaits you and that is a very grand thing.  Enjoy the ride.

What is Your Life Attracting?

What are you attracting to your life?  Be generous and be grateful and the universe will reward you.  What goes around comes around.  It is a rule of life.  

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Peace In Your Heart

Hoping your Sunday is full of peace and happiness.  May God bless you and yours.

Wise Words

"Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible."

"Happiness is not something ready made. It comes from your own actions."

"If you want others to be happy, practice compassion.  If you want to be happy, practice compassion."

"The very purpose of spirituality is self-discipline. Rather than criticizing others, we should evaluate and criticize ourselves. Ask yourself, what am I doing about my anger, my attachment, my pride, my jealousy? These are the things we should check in our day to day lives."

Heavy Load?

Serious things don’t always have to be so serious.  In fact, when things are at their worst, I use humor to handle my heavy loads.   Humor helps the medicine go down much easier when things are very serious.  It does not mean that I’m not taking things serious; it is just an easier way of handling the stress that comes with the serious heavy burdens of life.  It also helps to trust in tomorrow.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Little Things

Like my Chinese water torture theory, drip, drip, drip; it all matters and adds up.  I spoke of my bucket list today.  This applies very much to my list.  I can't tell you the pleasure I get from crossing something from my bucket list.  Have you put together a bucket list?  By the way, a great movie!  As the Lotto says you have to dream it to make it happen.  Don't let life just take you. Even at my age, I still have goals and find great happiness in working hard for them and making them happen.

I have a friend that makes maple syrup.  It is a huge family affair and a lot of hard work to get just one quart of syrup.  It begins with the slow dripping of sap, the filling of buckets, emptying them daily, hauling the buckets, the boiling down of many many buckets, and finally the canning of what they call brown gold because of all the work that goes into each quart, one drip at a time.  Making maple syrup is a good analogy of  making your goals become reality.  Hard work and patients will give you the gold.  Maybe I will call my drip, drip, drip theory the maple syrup theory in the future.  It sounds sweeter.

Thanks Karin for the sweet brown gold you have shared in the past.  I know how precious a gift it was.

Great Expectations

Expectations cause frustration. Frustration is a byproduct: the more you expect, the more you create your own frustration especially if you expect too much from others.  Frustration is not really the problem, it is the result. Expectation is the real problem. You have no control over others and that can cause ever ending frustration.  You should only expect of yourself and you will save a great deal of aggravation and irritation.  Do not set yourself up to fail causing even more frustration.  Know your limits and do not expect any more than that.  You can not be frustrated or disappointed and be happy at the same time so pick happy when ever possible.

Just be happy

Going Camping

Well I decided to stop thinking about it and just do it so I went out and bought a small camper yesterday.  Now I will be even more anxious for Spring to come.  An RV show room is an amazing dream world.  There is  show this weekend at the Expo Center in the QC.  To save myself any discontent, I will stay away and be happy with my modest little camper.  It is all I need with gas prices going higher and higher.  I should be able to set this up by myself and the girls (aka my dogs) and I just take off. So I get to cross one thing off of my bucket list.  Come on Spring, I want to get my hands dirty in the garden and smell like smoke from the camp fire.  Life is good.

Be happy and may God bless you and yours.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Life is Good

It is Friday!  May you have a unique and wonderful weekend.  

Wishing You Sunshine

Wishing you much sunshine and happiness today.  May God bless you and yours.

What Was I Thinking?

If  (key word being if) I had to do life over again here are some of the things I would reconsider:

·       Worrying about what other people thought and letting others control my life
·       Some bad choices in friends who did not value friendship
·       A better father for my son.  He deserved so much better.  I look back now and wonder what was I thinking.
·       Wasting precious time on worrying about things that never happened

I won’t waste too much time on this because I can’t do it over and time is precious but giving a little thought to it today.  I only allowed  myself  first 4 quick picks because God knows I sure made some whopping mistakes in my life.  I used to say, I would not change anything, but rethinking now, wisdom tells me that had I not made some choices life would have been simpler and easier (dah).  However; these mistakes made me stronger and who I am today, so no regrets.  Guess we all need to make the mistakes to learn and grow.  I'll now focus on today and make it the very best I can.

Be happy and may God bless you and yours.

What is Your Passion?

Each according to the dictates of his own conscience- Norman Rockwell

Beware - this is a warning that I'm on my soap box again, so if you don't want to hear it go to the next entry.  I'm allowed to vent once in awhile to get it off my chest and feel better so I can be happy.  Thanks for listening. 

What is your passion? What is it that stirs your blood, the fire in your soul, that which motivates you most about LIFE?  Only you can answer this.  No politician or group of people can tell you what it should be.  You must determine it so you can live it.  Politicians and the far right need to be concerned about their own souls and leave mine alone.  We all will be answering for the way we lived our life.  I’m very alarmed about the direction this election is taking.  Where is the separation of Church and State and basic principles this country was founded on?  Religious freedom is not a privilege; it is a right and the first amendment written into our Constitution.  Religious freedom is a big one of my passions. 

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Old School vs New School

I’m old school when it comes to cooking because that is how I was taught.  Old school doesn’t mean better or the right way only the way one does things.  If I can learn a better way, I’ll change my way of doing things.  The question is can I learn the new way or is it a better way?  As an ol’ timer now, seems like a lot of my ways are old school and I have to rethink things and determine if I should go old or new.  Sometimes I have no choice in the matter and must go new school in that all new technology is new school and you must keep up on it.  However; it is the old school in me that gave me the basics and the strong base to be able to learn the new technology.  I do pretty good for an ol’ lady and thank God for the old school in me.  

I just love this picture.  It says ol' school vs new school very well don't you think?  Makes you wonder what they are surfing on the web doesn't it? 

Explain It to Grandma

Funny how Grandmas see things differently than others.  Experienced loving eyes can see  things from a  whole new perspective and with a little humor and no drama.

Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff

The power of my own thoughts allows me to grow in strength.  When my thoughts are dealing with small stuff they have no time for the important stuff.  Save your energy for what really matters in your life.  This is your responsibility, not others.

I think it is easier for us older adults because we have already lived through and experienced so much.  I realized long ago that it always works out in the end or the way it was meant to be so let life have the small stuff.  I have my hands full with the big stuff and even much of that I hand over to God and trust in Him.  

Being a Grandparent

This makes me feel so proud to be a grandparent and a little bit scared because of the responsibility it places on me as a grandparent.  I promise I will try to live up to what it means to be a grandparent.

Be happy and may God bless you and yours.  

Wednesday, February 22, 2012


Make it a great day.  Focus on all the big and little blessings that surround you.  Don't forget to give thanks.


Russian scientist resurrected seeds over 30,000 years old that had been frozen in the Siberian permafrost.  The seeds had been buried by Ice Age squirrels.  The Silene stenophylla is the oldest plant ever to be regenerated, the researchers said, and it is fertile, producing white flowers and viable seeds.  Now that is persistence.  I find that just amazing.


Cabin Fever

I have cabin fever and am dreaming and thinking about nature, gardening, the great outdoors and camping. I was talking to someone about camping this week and camp fires became part of our conversation.  The entire experience of camping must include a camp fire.  There is something primal about sitting and looking into a fire.  It is more than just the warmth of the fire.    You can sit well into the night saying nothing, hypnotized by the flames as you look into the fire.  It seems to give you some sort of peace.  I can’t wait for camping and the peace that comes with being with nature and the camp fire.

Be happy and may God bless you and yours.

What To Read Next?

Are you as overwhelmed and besieged as I am on what to read next?  My list gets longer and longer and I can’t get to all the books I want to read and reread.  I read one and add 3 or 4 more to the list.  I need a system to prioritize them.  I will have to give some thought to that instead of my somewhat random way I’m picking now.  It is my OC, ADHD, curiosity, inquiring minds have to know mind that makes me feel so inundated.  Just can’t get enough.  


I’m adding a stone today to my gratitude/blessing jar for my introduction to bacon jerky.  It is wonderful.  I’m also adding another one for Cuties.  They taste like heavenly sweet sunshine.  A blessing does not always have to be a grand thing.   Life is good because of the little things that are a part of it.  Add something each day.  I need to start a new bottle or get a bigger one already.  I just started it February 15th.  Family, friends, health, and other givens came first.  Now it is getting to be fun looking at the simple silly things that I’m grateful for. 

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Keep On Truckin'

What is it they say?  Someones junk is someone else's treasure.  I think this is a treasure.  The fun I used to have playing in my Uncle Harley's old junked cars when I was a kid visiting the farm in the summer.  This is a treasure to any child and some not so grown up children too.  I can see it clearly at my dream camp site where a permanent camp site is made with wild flowers growing around it and the woods shading it.  Oh yah, this is a treasure!

Be happy and may God bless you and yours.

Best Memories

I hope my grandchildren tell their grandchildren about times we spent together.  I hope later in their life those memories will be treasured ones.  I love all of them so dearly.  Thank you God for giving my memories of time spent with them.

Amazing Times in Life

Each moment in life is amazing in its own way but the truly amazing times are the ones you carry with you forever like the births of your children or grandchildren or the first time you hold your adopted child in your arms.  These times can carry you through the worst of times.  Have you noticed that the most beautiful of times always seem to involve sharing the moment with another person?  


This remind me of My Snow Covered Roses poem I wrote and photo I took. Posted it in an earlier blog.  It is beautiful I must say.  

Who Do You Want to be?

You must put a plan into action once you have decided what you want to be.  It just doesn't happen.  In fact it is hard work but worth everything you put into it.  We all have a primary need to be happy.  It is your responsibility to make it happen and no one else.

Monday, February 20, 2012

No More Boxes!

Life has many dimensions and we should not be so arrogant as to believe that we know even a small portion of it.  When we as humans can only use a small percentage of our brain and life is so complex, we must admit we know very little and continue to want to learn and explore it.  Let's learn together and stop putting people in boxes.  You must think outside the box to grow and as they say, you can't put a square peg in a round hole.  We need to be a little more well rounded.

Nature Photographed

Horsetail Waterfall
 I would love to see this in person.  A window of time just opened in Yosemite National Park when the sun and earth align to create a fleeting phenomenon of Horsetail Waterfall which resembles molten lava as it flows over the cliff.  This marvel  happens in a flash at sunset in mid-February — if the winter weather cooperates. On those days the setting sun illuminates the waterfall. This was first recorded in 1973.  Photographing Horsetail is a lesson in astronomy, physics and geometry just to capture it.  It materializes in varying degrees of intensity for the same two weeks every year.
One of God's amazing, grand, beautiful creations.  But then so is a small flower from my garden.  Look for His beauty in all things.

Be happy and may God bless you and yours. 

Wrong About Something

I am humbled a lot.  I realize this many times a day, but the great thing is that I'd rather be happy than right so I find this no big deal in life.  I am humbled by how much I don't know and am still learning minute by minute. That makes life great.


You must first define knowledge and weight.  Simple lessons of life can carry great weight if you learn from them and grow. Sometimes knowing something also carries a huge amount of weight and responsibility.  Trust is a great gift given to another and it carries much weight that you should never drop.  The burden of trust becomes less of a burden once you have learned to value it and give it and receive it freely.

Be happy and may God bless you and yours.

Sunday, February 19, 2012



Great quote.   I can't motivate someone else.  I can only act as a role model.  I can't change anyone, only myself.  I can't tell you what to think, only give you ideas and express my opinions to make you think your own thoughts.  Hope my blog gets you to thinking.

Be happy and may God bless you and yours.

Patience vs Impatience

One of my great blessings that God gave me is my patience.  Thank you God. 


Saturday, February 18, 2012

Powerful Drug

Be careful how you use them.  Give some thought to what you are going to say before you say it.  


All I Need

Like in the movie The Jerk where Steve Martin says "This is all I need", these two things make me very happy and is almost everything I need.  Add faith, family and friends (this includes pets also) and I think I'm there.  With the new Kindle I can now garden and listen to a book being read to me at the same time.  Now if that is not happiness, I don't know what is.

Be happy and may God bless you and yours.  

Much Wisdom