Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Ten Things of Thankful

Maybe there will be ten items I'll mention and maybe not. That is the good thing about this blog hop at Josie Two Shoes. Although it does have that title, we are given some liberty as to whether we actually mention ten and whether we mention them in a list.  Recognizing the differences and sameness among our blogging friends is what I like about this group of bloggers. Click this Ten Things of Thankful link and see how others are writing their posts this time. Is it a list? Are there photos accompanying the posts? Maybe music videos or art work? It varies each week.

1. Rainy day meals - It has been a while since I have prepared a big pot of soup. Because I have so much fun making it, I tend to make more than two people can eat. We enjoyed this made-from-scratch vegetable beef soup tonight. I even simmered beef bones for hours to make the stock. The fun part comes when I begin adding the vegetables until the pot is full. No beef meat was added to this soup. Since I'd cooked up a pot of brown jasmine rice yesterday and we had some left over, we served some of the soup over a little mound of rice. Thanks for the wind and rain and dark skies that spurred me in this direction.

A bowl of vegetable soup made using home-made beef stock. The bowl is light blue and is setting on a woven placement the color of wheat ready to harvest.

2. January growing seasons - When I went to get a couple of potatoes from the food storage room tonight, I found this poking up from a bag. There had been one small potato that had been forgotten in one of the bags, so it had to do something about that. It started growing and just kept growing until I noticed it. We have had an unusually warm and dry January this year in our area, so maybe this potato is trying to tell us something.  

3-1/2" long russet potato with one tall (5") sprout on top and one short sprout growing from the side, looking a little like a tan automobile, tapered in front, with an oversized antenna on top at the back and a little arm sticking out the window on the side

3. Life and reminders of what is really important - This past week a man that my husband has known for many years passed away. They had shared the same profession and had a number of common interests. Although we knew his passing would be soon and there was nothing to stop it from happening, it has been a reminder once again that life seems all too short sometimes. I can't help but feel that his kindness and caring in reaching out to people and his love for his family and other people were his greatest assets. He will be missed. I'm glad my husband was able to spend some time with him a couple of days at the beginning of last week.

4. Archaic words that seem like they should be revived - Words come and go and change in meaning, but this word that a friend brought to my attention today seems to fit many in the world today. The word is "grumbletonian." A person who is angry or unhappy with the government might have been referred to as one of these.

5. Stretching exercises - In a past post I mentioned seeing some trumpeter swans recently in our area. I grabbed my camera one day this past week and had it in the car as we drove to the post office. This time the swans were a little nearer to the road, so I was able to capture several images after my husband pulled over to the side of the road. Perhaps exercises and the hope that I can soon get back to doing them has been on my mind a little too much. When I looked at the photo below, I couldn't help but see how each trumpeter swan appeared to be showing one example of using it's neck.

Three trumpeter swans in a muddy plowed field that has a little green growth appearing within the mud. The swan on the left has its neck stretched out low to the ground and is trying to get something from out of the mud or vegetation. The swan in the middle has its neck curved upward like the letter "n" close to its body, but then the rest of the neck is reaching vertically downward toward the ground with only its head seeming to flatten when level with the ground. The third swan is standing with its neck straight upward at a vertical angle from its body. Just imagine an imaginary string attached to its head at one end and to the sky at the other to help the swan maintain perfect posture.

6. The temple - I'm grateful that I was able to go to the temple with a friend last Friday. With so much on my mind, I especially liked being there that day where there is such a quiet presence, and peaceful feeling.

7. My husband's photography skills - Soon I think I will be able to post a different photo of me on my blog. Thanks to my husband's desire to use some lighting equipment and try his hand at a little portrait work, this change will be coming to my blog.

8. Music challenge - Recently in a blog post I'd mentioned using the Thompson piano books when I was taking lessons years ago. When I stopped taking piano lessons, I'd finished the third grade book. (The grades pertain to skill level, not grade in school.) While browsing the books at a thrift store last week, I came across a never used Thompson's piano book which will give me a challenge, as it is the fourth grade book. The price was right, and I could not resist the brand new book.

9. Quotations - I'm not sure exactly when it was that I realized how much I enjoy quotations, but I suspect it was when I was in grade school. They continue to inspire me, such as this one. "Desires dictate our priorities, Priorities shape our choices, and Choices determine our actions." Elder Dallin H. Oaks

Click to see source.

10. Restful sleep under down filled duvet - After a number of years sleeping under a down filled duvet I have gotten spoiled. It is so light and yet keeps me cozy warm. As a child I slept under heavy quilted woolen blankets which kept me quite warm in the winter, but at this stage in my life, lighter but still warm suits me better.

What are you thankful for this week? 



  1. I love your photo descriptions this week, especially the one describing the potato car, complete with occupant!

    1. As soon as I saw that potato, I knew I would have to share that in some way. :-)

  2. This was such a fun read, Pat! I agree with Kristi, your description of the potato was so clever it made me laugh! :-) Like you, I really enjoy seeing what each person will do with their TToT post each week, I think the variety of formats makes it much more interesting.

    I saw your new photo on Facebook, and it's beautiful! The lighting is perfect and it will be a wonderful addition here. Your husband did a fantastic job!

    Ohhh that soup looks good, if I lived nearby I'd be showing up with an empty bowl! I like soup served over rice too, makes it more filling.

    The shortness of life becomes ever so clear as we age a bit and more and more people we know depart this world. It really makes us treasure our relationships, and our memories too. I know your husband will miss his friend, and I'm glad he got to spend time with him recently.

    "Grumbletonian"... the perfect word for a few Facebook pals who seem a bit politically obsessed these days. While we may not always be happy with the way things are, or thing it is the way they should be, we need to remember to effect change in positive ways, rather than just endless complaining!

    Your swans were indeed showing how wonderfully God made their necks, much like my cats that can stretch and relax comfortably in ways I envy so much!

    I am glad that you were able to go to the temple and found peace there, a blessing!

    I recall the Thompson piano lesson books and a couple other series when I was young and taking piano lessons. I haven't been near one in many years, I wonder if it's still in my brain. Enjoy working thru Book 4, a fun thrift store find!

    I have always loved quotations too, this is a really good one that you've shared. One of the lessons we really need to impress upon young people (and older folks too)is to think it through and make good choices! So much of the misery we encounter in life is in response to desires and priorities that were misguided at best!

    Down comforters are indeed wonderful! I had one when I lived in Germany, and we often slept with the bedroom window cracked open even in the cold of winter, it kept us snuggly warm while the fresh air was awesome! Really heavy quilts tend to make me sweaty, so I layer lighter ones now... and soft flannel sheets in the winter!

    Thank you for joining us for TToT again this week, I always look forward to yours, always things on your list that I can relate to! XOXO

    1. Even though I just took piano lessons for three years, I continued to play through my teens. About five years after we were married, my folks let me take the piano since we had finally purchased a home. I continued to play, but more just for fun and at church at times, not with any attempt to advance in skill.

      I really enjoy all the quotations you share on FB!

      The soup is good, but I think I'll freeze the rest. We've eaten it two days in a row. :-)

  3. That soup, along with some rice, mmm.

    I love quotes too, so brief and poignant most times.

    I love your photos and the swans. I used to love swans, as I could always pick out their bright white necks and bodies as they glided through the water.

    The warm yet light way to sleep is my choice too.

    Hope you have a lovely week.

    1. I hope that the descriptions with the photos are helpful Kerry. I think of you each time I try to describe the image.

      The week is off to a good start.

  4. I'm with Kristi, your photo descriptions are most excellent. "with an oversized antenna on top at the back and a little arm sticking out the window on the side"
    lol very nicely done.

    1. Glad you enjoyed the photo descriptions. I had fun with that one.

  5. I can't believe that potato!!! WOW!!! I, too, love quotations and so love the restful sleep under a duvet... I'm procrastinating going up to bed now, although I've been tired all day. I had a restless night last night and know the best cure is to go now, but I delay, not wanting to check the clock... Sleep well!

    1. I've delayed bedtime too. Sometimes it helps, because then I am so tired, I sleep 'til morning without waking up in the middle of the night. Though I usually go right back to sleep when I wake at night, it is nice to have totally uninterrupted sleep.

  6. I love your new photograph, Pat, you have a beautiful warm, friendly face and smile :)

    I used to use the Thompson books when I played piano too. That soup looked lovely. I think I may have to make some this weekend as it'll be perfect for my cold!

    1. Thanks.
      Do you have a piano to play now? So many people who learned to play now tend to get the smaller keyboards instead of the large pianos because they are such a pain to move. Society tends to make a lot more moves now than they did in the past.
      I do hope you get over the cold and that the soup helps.

  7. Great list of thankfuls. Your soup looks amazing!

    1. The soup was very good, and it made me feel like I was eating in a healthy way.

  8. Hi, Pat. I'm a super souper. I love making, and eating all sorts of soup. Whenever I start a healthy eating plan, I make vegetable soup. When I need a good comforting meal, I make soup, my latest favorite it pasta fajioli. Yesterday I drove the hour to my son's house, and watched the baby while he was home sick and I made him some chicken noodle soup. Ah, soup. The new photo of you I spied over at the SSS is quite lovely. I've always wanted to learn some good photography techniques. I love taking pictures with my phone camera. Quotes that inspire are wonderful; Josie is really good at sharing them each day.

    1. I'll have to look up for a recipe called pasta fajioli. The name is fun to say too. :-) Aw yes, the chicken noodle soup cures all we hope. Hope your son is feeling better and that the rest of the family stays well.

  9. Nothing like homemade soup on a rainy day. Heck, I like soup on any day lol Except it's especially good on a cold winter day or a rainy, gloomy day. Good idea putting it over rice. My mom used to make a mean beef vegetable soup. She would simmer it on the stove all day. It was best the next day :)
    Love you pictures Pat. Nice comparison - potatoe to car. Made me laugh.
    I'm so sorry for your husband's loss. As we age, it becomes a more common experience losing those whose presence in our lives seemed secured and fixed. I'm glad they had time to spend with each other.
    I really like #9. Excellent quote.

    1. There have been times when I have purchased canned soup, but the homemade kind is sans additives and that is better for us.
      That little potato has been good for something. Laughter has a way of nourishing too and can be a health benefit.
      Even when we know death will happen, the aftermath for those left to take care of the details of carrying on is a difficult burden.
      I'm glad you like the quotation.