Gifts from the Past

It seems logical that today is the birthday surrounding another favorite author (the artist, not the author). I can get completely lost in the words of Carroll as Alice wandered through Wonderland. This musing is one of those things I thought was ‘Curiouser and curiouser.’

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One of the things I try to do each day is write down blessings in a notebook. Ages ago I read a book by Ann Voskamp called 1000 Gifts, it spurred me to write down three blessings or gifts a day. I used to post them on my blessings blog frequently and put them in the notebook daily. I left the notebook in Oregon when I went north to care for mom and it has been hard to get back into doing either one!  Anyway, one of the prompts for this week was ‘gifts from the past that help you trust the future’. I was stumped this year, so I went back to see if I’d written anything down for that date before.  I had.  Something I love was scribed. Bulbs. I have so many flowers given to me by others and when they bloom, they remind me of that person. Yet, how is that trust for the future? Perhaps it reminds me that life goes on after death? Gardens are HUGE for showing the cycle of life. There is every stage in a garden from sex to embryo to death and coming back to life again. Especially with a bulb. I have tiny Tete-a-Tetes blooming at the moment.

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Thinking further, I definitely have a problem with trust. (More than likely from deep seated bits of my childhood.) Most of the people I have trusted fade away, they are still trustworthy, but their mindset has moved from being close to me. That is part of that life cycle thing, yet it still presents a skewed outlook in my Kris world. I push people away, too. (I have a tendency to be rather naive, but that is totally different from trust!) I was trying to think of persons I trust at the time of this typing and there are several who hold parts of me, but I’m not sure if anyone has all of me completely. (Let me wax even more philosophical!) Does anyone know all of anyone??? I am reminded of that line in ‘Ground Hog Day’ where Phil says ‘Maybe the real God knows so much because He’s been around so long.” When you are around someone a lot, do they know you? I can honestly say The Craftsman doesn’t know all of me. Some of my readers know more of me than most and probably more than my family! (Blog babbling can be a bit much, I’m always humbled by people who read and respond to me!) However, this relates to trust in people. It isn’t where the prompt was going, I don’t think!

I reckon continuity is what I see Around the Korner of this mind wander. A noun to depend on.  Birds are migrating, plants are growing (albeit not when expected), my boys are level headed (for the most part!!), and when I mix certain ingredients together, I manage to get cookies. The different things may not be exactly like they are supposed to be, but they show seasons and growth and seasonings following a plan. And this Friday, when I looked out the window, I saw some of my purple crocus in bloom. Finally! (the catmint is showing and tiny violets are appearing in the yard..still too early to do any digging, the soil is incredibly chilly.)

So, what is something from the past that helps you to trust in the future? Do you have a crafted item that reminds you of this? A plant? Does your family? A pet? It has taken me more than two hours to come up with this post, I’m curious as to what others might hold as a promise for tomorrow or beyond.

 

ABC’s of Me

I am a huge fan of a certain Doctor. The Doctor known as Seuss. His birthday is in a few days and I will celebrate him once more for helping me learn how the ABCs made words and sentences and stories. A friend on FB posted this and I didn’t want to share there, so I will share it here. It is pretty long, but there ARE 26 letters in our English alphabet!

Age – 55 (how on earth did I get that old already!!!??!!!) Pic from second Easter with my aunt, just over a year old.

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Bed Size – I have always liked a CA Queen. It isn’t an easy mattress to find for some reason. It is actually the size of a queen waterbed, longer than a king and yet as wide as a queen. Length is sometimes more important than width. (did you grin when you read that!?!)
Cat name – Which cat? Moses, who ‘supposes his toeses are roses’ or Mittens who has whiskers that are one of my favorite things? (not quite the right lyric, but I really do love the whiskers on Mittens!) Those are the two in residence at this time.
Dog name – Not being a dog person, I recall a few here and there. I much prefer cats.
Essential start of your day – Usually my alarm goes off and I am fortunate that I can reach over and stop it before going back to sleep. Yup, lazy lady!
Favorite color – Purple..and green and red. As I mentioned elsewhere, at least once, I hope to be reincarnated as a fuchsia.

Ghosts exist – I believe in the Holy Ghost and in regular ghosts. There is too much energy in our world for a person to just up and die, especially if their end wasn’t a restful one.
Height – I anticipate I’m still the U.S. height of 5’2”. When I get my angel wings I hope to fly about 2 inches higher than the street of gold or clouds, then I can be 5’4” for a century or so!
Instruments you played in school – I was a flautist. Not a good one, but I played for several years!

Jokester or serious – I have played jokes on persons, April first has always been a favorite day. I tend to focus on logic and practicality in most of my life, though.
Kind of day that’s your favorite – I am always thankful for days, even if they annoy me. I do like ones in which I get things done or days in which joy is seen and given.
Longest relationship – an interesting question to answer. I have known my sister my whole life, although I’m not sure we have a relationship beyond genetic. I’ve been married for awhile. Thirty-one years of what could be a relationship. There are many authors I’ve read over and over and over who continue to change me. (Yes, I commune with books.) I have been a follower of Christ for most of my life, it is a part of my name. I don’t follow exact biblical beliefs, that is between me and my God. In reflection, what is a relationship? A give and take between individuals that benefit each person? I surmise this is intriguing to muse on!
Most annoying job – Taking care of mom was often annoying, as you may be aware! As a paying job, I believe the most annoying ones are when I was told to do things and not given enough information. Or having the ability to do more than I was given.
Night Owl – I am a  night owl, I do not like mornings. They are beautiful, but happen way too early!
Overnight Hospital stay – I’ve stayed in hospitals overnight many times. The two worst were decades apart. The first was when I was diagnosed with Diabetes. I hadn’t really gotten sick, mom recognized the symptoms, took me in, and I was immediately put in a brand new room where the only thing working was the bed. The second was when I had my gall bladder out and was in the hospital for a week over Christmas. I couldn’t watch TV because it hurt- (OK, I am sure there was something else on besides Mrs. Doubtfire, but that was all I wanted to watch and laughing was incredibly painful!) I didn’t like staying in hospitals overnight with mom. Night seems to be a hard time for patients.
Pet peeve – people not using blinker fluid, because that must the be only reason those helpful lights are constantly dark. People stocking items in stores higher than I can reach is another, but that is usually taken care of by helpful tall people in the stores.
Quiet time hobby- I like to read. (I’m betting no one knows this about me!)
Right or Left handed – Unlike Wesley or Inigio Montoya, I am only right handed.
Siblings – Jake is my only sibling. She often drives me nuts.

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TV shows you watch – I’m not a TV fan. I can be taken in by episodes of different series, but by and large, I can easily find anything else to do!
Underachiever or Overachiever? – I often don’t live up to my potential.
Voice of influence – I have been influenced by so many people. Not one in particular, but several. I often find myself doing things the way I was taught by friends in college or catch myself thinking differently because of Rhapsody or favorite bloggers (Gary helps me keep my kitchen tidier!). Authors I’ve read have helped me, as well.
Worst day of the week – Actually, Saturday annoys me. Everyone is home and yet, my day is pretty much the same as the other days. Except I work around them.
X-rays – I’ve had a few! I kind of wish I could have had ones of my feet when you got to measure for new shoes. Although, that was fairly dangerous!!! Can you imagine having an x-ray machine set up in the middle of a store????
Yummy food you like – I enjoy salty sweet, like kettle corn, plain fritos with milk chocolate chips, and chocolate covered pretzels.
Zoo favorites – I’ve not been to a zoo in eons, I do love watching birds of all kinds. Crows and ravens are among my favorites. However, I’d love to meet a Zizzer-Zazzer-Zuzz.

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Ides of February

I got side tracked and didn’t write up the rest of the weekend! So, I’ll do it now and post accordingly.

Saturday was a busy day. I planned on cooking a ham for dinner that night and decided to add whole wheat homemade rolls. They had sage and thyme and a bit of shredded Parmesan as ingredients. However, I’ve not made whole wheat before and the rolls I made were cute little clover leaf almost weapons. Soft deep inside, but quite sturdy on the outside. (I had made a larger loaf so I’d have extra dough to wrap around hotdogs for dinner on Sunday and those were waiting in the addition overnight.) I was also going to make cookies for a church potluck, but needed sugar. The guys had planned on going out on Saturday afternoon, so I had asked them to pick me up some.

By the time dinner was on the table, I realized I needed to find a cookie with just the ingredients I had and not ones I was used to using since they had NOT left. Dinner was interesting, my tiny Yukon taters exploded in the pressure cooker (It has been a while since I’ve used the pressure cooker for tiny whole taters!) and made a bit of a mess and those paired with the rolls, well, aesthetics aside, it did taste good!

The Craftsman watched TV with Moses on Saturday, and did a lot in the basement. He finished an earring holder I’d planned on making. Mine was going to be much simpler and from recycled picture frames. You can see the one he made (also from recycled wood) is definitely not simple, but that is why he’s a craftsman and I’m more of a dabbler in crafting! It will be nice to have most of my earrings hanging where I can see them instead of in boxes. I’ll still need to keep some in boxes, but they won’t be all jumbled together with the earrings with hooks. (and yes, I do have that many!! I love earrings!!!) The hooks on the frame are for necklaces. He actually finished this on Sunday, was going to hang it on Monday, it is still in the basement with this other item on the lathe he said is for the kitchen and I’ll use it the most. (run on sentence!!) I’m not entirely sure what it is, besides pretty.

So, Saturday night, I needed a sweets recipe without white sugar and found a different sour cream cookie one, once again it is one of Betty’s. It is also fiddly, but I might make it every so often anyway! Little Bear tried one when they were just out of the oven and decided they were a ‘cookie that was trying to be a cupcake and only made it halfway.’ After I frosted them, he enthusiastically decided, ‘these are like pancakes with syrup and butter!’ At church, one youngster said they were like little maple bars. I was intrigued by the change in the glaze color with a difference of a single ingredient. The recipe called for butter, melted until slightly browned. Also adding powdered sugar and maple extract. I did this with margarine (yes, I know there are evils in margarine, but all cookies are evil from the first pan pulled from the oven, so I tend to go cheaper instead of buttery) and it wasn’t that good. I ran out of glaze, (the recipe made around 60 cookies, so that was good) and made it again with butter. It was lighter in color and the taste was much better. (also didn’t take the time to let it cook to the darker hue) I’m not a fan of maple bars, but I do like maple. Once this extract is gone, I think I’ll make them again with real maple syrup in the glaze. I wonder what that glaze would be like on a cinnamon roll????

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I didn’t get to bed til early Sunday morning, I had toyed with putting the glaze on in the morning, but realized it WAS morning and figured I’d just do it and get it out of the way! Which was good, Sunday morning brought its own chores and duties! After church, I did more things around the house and the guys left to go shopping (Grandma needed pellets for her woodstove). I got the wrapped dogs out of chilling and hoped for the best. Oddly, after rising for almost 3 and half hours, they were beautiful. I wouldn’t have done that if they had been something other than very good highly processed meat wieners. I hate leaving food in unsafe conditions! (I even bleach down my sink and cutting boards after working with fowl!) The taste of herbs inside the wheat was perfect! Little Bear didn’t care for them, but he prefers his wheat white and colored only by chocolate.

I finally finished the last Witcher book I had checked out. I’m done with those for now. (I’m shaking my head as I type!) In the first pages of the latest book I read, a main character (I’d not met before) was sighting in carefully with a bow on something and in between waiting for the object of her intent, reminisced a LOT, catching the reader up on things. For more than a chapter! The end of this book an old man was telling the story I was reading to a group of children and they were demanding more, so after choosing what character story to share, he did. Completely confused me! However, I did love the vampire. He was of a race of peoples who don’t drink blood to live, but for enjoyment, like a party beverage, and this particular vampire tended to get ‘drunk’ on it, so he didn’t drink it anymore. He pooh poohed vampire regeneration because anyone can regenerate fingernails and hair and skin, vampires just do it better. He scoffed at sunshine melting folks because most peoples fear the night and his own people had to adapt and mutated to live in it comfortably. He did believe sunshine is a killer anyway and in another thousand years, most people would be nocturnal anyway. This particular vampire was a sort of a doctor and very good at it. As stated, I liked him. But not enough to keep reading the rest of the series any time soon!!!

Which brings us to Feb 17 and Random Acts of Kindness Day. I hadn’t realized how hard it is to randomly act, most of my day has planned portions and random ones will need to wait til I leave the house! Actually, today is the 18th in Oregon and I should probably do some chores after posting this! May your week be filled with sunshine and laughter! (photo from Alaska in feb 2018)

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The Ides of February?

Friday was a crazy day. I had prepared some cookie dough the night before and it was not exactly what I had hoped it would be. It was a Pinterest fail, even if I don’t do that site! Even Betty (of the house of Crocker) would have probably been surprised. I have wanted to make checkerboard cookies for years and decided to try them for this holiday. (I even toyed with using m&m candies for the tokens) Most of the recipes for these cookies are mathematical in nature and I don’t do geometry well. Some of the more simple ones don’t make many cookies, something I feel is silly. (If I make a cookie, especially one that is time consuming, it better be worth my while!) So, in the one recipe I felt the procedure might be doable, I opted for a cookie recipe in a worn out Betty Crocker cookbook instead of the one listed. (not a coffee fan) I think the dairy sour cream made the dough too sticky, but I sallied forth. (Insert eye rolling!) I’ll need to find that other recipe online…

I’d mixed the dough on Thursday night and stacked it and stuck it in the fridge. It looked like a rectangular snake wrapped in cellophane. On Friday morning, I started to bake them. But, I was interrupted by someone. (I realized ignoring a person isn’t nice, especially if you don’t have a good reason. So, I prattled on til he felt better knowing ‘all’ about me—he doesn’t! lol) Eventually, I got back to the baking task and opted to make heart cookies. Not checkered, but more variegated or camouflage or even marbled. They taste good, are soft, and will probably not be a recipe I’ll use again!

My glucose kept dropping during the day, nice, but not always useful. I had errands for the afternoon, including a therapy session. I carefully removed things I needed to do from my list til I finally just stayed put. (Part of that was cuz I had also fallen. Granted, I was sitting down, but I did fall and was in a small bit of soreness. I had been sitting at the computer for a few minutes. When I finished, I scooted away from the desk. I was on a rolling chair and when it rolled, I didn’t go with it and landed ‘PLUNK’ on the floor! Entirely ungraceful. I didn’t want to admit to the therapist how I’d fallen and why I didn’t use my cane while sitting. I’ll tell him next week.) I did visit with TnT by phone and went to see and talk my neighbor’s ear off (she’s going through cancer treatments, special gal). I also laughed later, cuz Little Bear was going to go shopping and he opted not to and I’d asked him to get me a couple things.

I made some terrible canned tomato soup for supper (store brands are often not exactly as good as name ones) with what Little Bear calls a shrimp boat. (the shrimp dish might be why he stayed home!) I cut a loaf of French bread in half lengthwise, slather it with garlic butter, lightly warm it in the oven, cover the bread with tiny shelled shrimps, cover those completely with layers of shredded cheeses, then pop it back in the oven til the cheese is melted and slightly browned. This paired with green salad and the soup was a good choice (a better brand or homemade soup would have been better!).

We finished the evening with watching ‘The Princess Bride’. I love that movie! (I may have mentioned that in here before!) I also read my Feb 14 book. Seriously, a favorite read.

Gifts? I gave the guys magazines and sweets (The Craftsman got packages of his favorite cookies, Chips Ahoy original, plus quite a few others over the course of the last weeks). I think he sort of feels badly. He gave me my favorite flowers on Thursday night and then I was given potted tulips on Friday with candy. He gave me MORE candy on Sunday (it was discounted and I was sort of frustrated, I had planned ahead several gifts and got him the same kind, but it is still hidden away). I reckon I’ll give him his Monday gift on Tuesday (our anniversary). He’s also working on projects in the basement. I’m hoping one of them is something I’ve wanted for the last couple of years. (it has been in the works for that long!) The other, I was told, is something for me for the kitchen. As mentioned before, it is my favorite room in the house. But, most of it wasn’t my idea at all and I just sit back and he does what he thinks is a good idea and I learn to like it because they usually are.

Anyway, that was Friday. Saturday was crazy, too. I am completely positive that CRAZY fits this year of 2020 perfectly. I keep shaking my head and laughing at things that happen. Because it makes no sense and little sense at the same time.

I do hope YOUR 14th wasn’t quite as convoluted!!!

Bridal Game?

In looking through mom’s stuff, I found a bit of paper saved. (Not a surprise, she saved lots of odd things and bits and bobs) This intrigued me because it had one of my step dad’s names on it and seemed a random list of words and sentences. I also saved it, because it was so odd. Finally, just recently, I realized it was a game! I’m not sure if it was a Bridal game or what. It may have two games on the sheet, but I’ll share the one I’m fairly certain was for fun. As you can see, it was printed neatly. (Not entirely sure this was mom’s printing, it almost looks like hers, but not quite!) It might be found on FB,, today. Back in the olden days, people used paper and pen!

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I believe she was asked questions and I’ll write those with her answers:

Are you good natured?  YES

Do you like sweets? YES

Who is your favorite boyfriend? BARRY

Are you healthy? YES

Are you rich? NO

What is your favorite number between 1 and 10? 7

Do you like sports? YES

What is a number between 1 and 12?  5

Name a fruit.  PINEAPPLE

What is your favorite color? BLUE

What is your next favorite color? GREEN

Use the responses above to answer these questions:

Did you do it much?

Did you like it?

Who gave it to you?

Were you tired the next morning?

Did you get enough?

How many times did you get it?

Was it good?

How long did it last?

What did it look like?

What color was it in the morning?

What color was it when through?

Now, I grew up with Madlibs. So much fun to add words into a story! So, I think this needs a bit of a story. It may have had one, I can just imagine the giggles in the early 70’s among young 20 something ladies as mom answered these questions. I remember Barry (my second dad) having parents that seemed well off. I was barely 5, so it might have been my imagination. However, I am pretty sure the wedding was fancy! I reckon the shower was as well. I’m betting I didn’t attend that gathering, though!

On the back of the page, there are just words. They are probably also for a game, but appear incredibly random. Especially as the first three and the last three are almost identical. (see photo) Strange, yes???

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This is a bit funny. I’ve written so many stories where people in the audience were chosen to shout out or speak a word or sentence, but for some reason, my brain cannot create a madlib for the above words and questions! Granted, most of the stories I wrote were for audience participation around kids and this one is less kid friendly. Still, it is odd my brain isn’t able to create anything. I’ll definitely keep it on the back burner after I share this in a post.

 

Wisdom and laughter

My youngest has a pager for emergency situations like fires. In the last months, the local department was absorbed into several others, so now calls are for any number of things from EMT to brush fires to roll overs and house fires (he is trained for structure fires). His pager went on on Wednesday night. It was a long call that he boiled down into, ‘a five year old fell and her head is bleeding, but she seems to be fine.’ I asked, ‘why on earth did they call for help? They should keep an eye on her and use ice.’

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

His comment? “It’s probably their first kid.”

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Photo by Flickr on Pexels.com

The Kid

Tuesday was an interesting day. 26 years ago, my baby was born (he knows he’ll always be my baby, he’s resigned to it!) and he hates having himself being in the limelight. Last year there was a snow storm and we had a party anyway. It was great fun. Tuesday morning, I made chocolate moose mud muffins for him to take to work. (The treats stayed in his Bronco because he HATES people knowing anything about him!!) We’ll have pizza for dinner and I was baking a chocolate cake while I typed up most of this post! When he came home for lunch, I thought I’d warm up the fries he had leftover from Sunday in the air fryer. He had on the microwave, the washer and dryer were going, and just in the last seconds of the microwave and air fryer time, a breaker went off. (no storm here, just a cool electrical picture from WP free photos)

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Photo by Torsten Dettlaff on Pexels.com

The air fryer on the other side of the kitchen went off, as well as the microwave, the fridge, the washer (not the dryer), and the kitchen radio/CD player! The dryer is on the same side of the house as most of the appliances which stopped. It was odd. Now, fixing this is normally simple. Except in this house. We have lived here for at least 11 years, the electrical was all odd when we moved in and The Craftsman (who likes working with electrical things) went on a fixing spree. But, he did not label the breaker box. Little Bear had to carefully turn switches (none were off) til the off things popped back on. His place of work gives them an hour for lunch instead of 30 min with two 15 min breaks in the day. He often takes that time to nap or read, both of which were missed today because he gave me power again. He also said he’d go with me to buy pizza. His cakes had  ‘outies’ and fell, one of the two pizzas slipped to the bottom of the oven, turned into a calzone and was opened back up, and it was a ridiculous day. Except for two phone calls. One from my uncle in MN and a brief one from TnT. I also got a text from my Alaskan neighbor. She’s in Hawaii with her spouse to celebrate her birthday, she texted cuz someone put piles of snow in front of three different drives! Her son was going to move them. Crazy!!! (The Kid’s cake with nipples and decor of chocolate curls on top made with tater peeler shavings from a candy bar and inside the two layers is raspberry jelly with mini chocolate chips)

Saturday was interesting. I haven’t checked emails and after opening up one, haven’t again!!! The power bill for $730 was more than I wanted. (it has been really cold up north. Not sure at my house, but my sister 20 miles away had -23F) I was busy all that day with baking and cleaning. The Craftsman helped vacuum the downstairs before he left for things he wanted to do, so that was different and nice. I got many FB greetings and several cards were mailed my way along with texts. For a birthday, it was really nice. It is all in your attitude. I could have whined cuz my family didn’t ‘do’ anything to celebrate me. Yet, they did. The Craftsman gave me a bag of Christmas Kit Kats he’d saved to give me (I did say something about chocolate and he popped them in front of me!), Little Bear purchased me a lovely soft blanket I didn’t need but appreciated, my aunt from Minnesota called, and the three of us did spend part of the evening watching a movie together. On Sunday, we took Grandma and went out for our annual February Sunday birthday lunch (photos are my lunch and Little Bear’s) and I bought a pair of earrings.

 

(My sandwich-above next to my ice cream for breakfast- was grilled chicken, blue cheese spread, and bacon. The kid had two patties of burger, a layer of roast beef, and ham and bacon!!)

I have almost a dozen Valentine’s almost ready to mail, I’ll do those later this week. Today has been too convoluted to visit the post!