Sunday, December 18, 2016

Ten Things of Thankful

Ice and snow in front of our home

This week has flown by in some ways, but in other ways it has been like standing still.  With a second storm system whamming our area in two weeks, I've been mostly at home due to the hazardous driving conditions from the ice and snow on the roads, many of which are very steep and hilly.

There have been a lot of posts on Facebook joking about how people drive here compared to drivers in other parts of the nation, who "know how to handle this stuff."  Well now that those areas have received the same or similar storm systems with the ice and snow scenario, it seems to be another story.  There have been accounts of many accidents due to the weather in other areas of the country. It seems driving on ice is just as much a problem there as it is here.  I suppose there will always be those ready to point fingers, and rant and rave.  Because I'm making a statement here, I think I'm just as guilty of a little ranting and raving about those ranting and raving. Perhaps I'm just frustrated a wee bit, and really it is just a bit.  Now on to "thankfuls."

I love that we need to remember the past week to write a post for the Ten Things of Thankful blog hop.  The more challenges for me to remember, the better.

Last Sunday evening I attended a Christmas Fireside at my church.  The music and program were beautiful.  It was  nice that the snow and ice storm on the Thursday before had all melted and made it safe to travel.

A friend treated me to lunch on Tuesday.  It was a wonderful break in the many tasks I had going that day.

My visit with Mom on Tuesday went well, but I learned that there were some cases of the flu that had been detected at the nursing home.  All the staff and visitors were given face masks to wear.  Anyone who had obvious symptoms were asked not to visit. Unfortunately the flu virus vaccine that was given this year doesn't protect against this strain, so now Tamiflu is being given to the residents.  The residents had already received the flu virus vaccine earlier.  I'm thankful for the staff who so carefully tend to the residents and the treatments they need, and for face masks and medications to slow the spread of illnesses.

My hubby needed to have a couple of crowns put in on Wednesday.  Unfortunately, another ice and snow storm system started to hit with a vengeance about the time he was leaving for his appointment.  The appointment took longer than was anticipated, so by the time he left I was worried about his safety as he headed home.  What happens when driving on ice is so unpredictable.  There were already reports of accidents happening on the roads because of the ice.  I am thankful that he made it home safe and sound, and for the power of prayer. The fact that we had the money to pay for this unexpected outlay of cash in the month of December was also a blessing.  Having a great dentist who keeps up with the latest techniques is surely not to be taken lightly either.

Because I had to cancel an appointment Thursday morning that I have had scheduled for over a month, I'm grateful that they totally understood my reasoning for canceling due to the weather and did not charge me for canceling on short notice.  They had called the day before and I'd explained that we live on a hill, and depending on what the weather was like in the morning, I might need to cancel.

The last time I've been able to drive anywhere was on Tuesday.  Fortunately we haven't lost power, so our house has stayed warm, and we'd gotten a load of pellets for the pellet stove about a week before the first storm this month.  We've had groceries that we needed, but we did take up the offer of a kind neighbor. He has a four-wheel-drive vehicle and was headed to town anyway, so he picked up a few things for us when he was at the store.  Not knowing exactly if there is to be another storm headed our way, we had him pick up just a few items.  The latest report is that Monday and Tuesday will bring warmer temperatures and heavy rains.  We are going to hope that report is right.

This deer is probably wishing some of the ice and snow would melt, so she can graze on our lawn.

I was only able to get one package wrapped and in the mail before the storm, but the others are ready, so I will no doubt join a lot of others standing in line at the post office on Monday.  I'm thankful for priority large flat-rate boxes and self-sealing stamps (so much better than licking and tasting the backs of the old postage stamps).  

When the cold weather sets in we enjoy eating soups.  Although I have amassed more cookbooks and recipes than one really needs, and I have done my fair share of cooking over all these long years, it is often faster to just do a quick internet search including a few of the ingredients I have on hand, or just start putting things in a pot and see what happens.  This week I did the latter and was happy to find that the end result was something we both enjoyed.  It is a good thing, since there is enough for more than just one meal.  I actually wrote down what I did this time so I could make it again, and I could share the recipe with you.  I'm thankful for urges to create recipes.

Vegetable - Chicken Soup Recipe
Makes about 4+ quarts

Place the following in a kettle and cook until tender:

2  32-oz boxes of organic low-sodium vegetable broth
1/2-lb frozen all natural boneless chicken thigh strips
4 small whole garlic cloves
5 medium carrots cut into slices
1/3 of a large head of cabbage, chopped
1/2 C chopped onion
1 C diced celery
1/4 C uncooked green lentils
1/4 C uncooked barley

Add the following toward the end of cooking time:
1 C uncooked curly egg noodles
1  15-oz can of young tender peas (undrained)

Add seasonings:
I used thyme, oregano, dried parsley, and some Italian seasoning mix and a little salt.  (I add pepper to my bowl of soup at the table,)

Vegetable - Chicken soup



  1. The deer pic is beautiful and I'm glad the snow is beautiful even if it's treacherous and cold. Hope the flu goes from the nursing home veryvery soon :)

    1. Things are better now at the nursing center. Yeah. I love to look at the snow from inside a warm home. :-)

  2. Are you supposed to get more snow this weekend? One of the forecasts predicts snow for us on Christmas Eve! The kids arrived safely early this morning, and the drive was uneventful, so I assume your roads are clear at the moment.

    1. It will be cold enough to snow if we get the moisture, but we will see. Today we have dense fog and frozen fog on the roads. I'm glad the kids drove down to your place yesterday and not today.