Thursday, January 28, 2021

Ten Things of Thankful

It is a wintry time, but not too cold to write Ten Things of Thankful. I hope you are able to feel some gratitude, and link up to the blog hop hosted by Dyanne of Backsies Is What There Is Not.

Ground, shrubs, and trees covered with snow

1. A time to bake

Monday was the day I realized how very patient the pumpkins given to me in the fall had been, assuming pumpkins have the ability to be patient. Typically most people probably would have either carved or eaten the pumpkins by now, but during a pandemic what is usual may deviate somewhat.

2. Finding a recipe online for Pumpkin Baked Oatmeal Cups (Muffins) that doesn’t have any flour in it

My husband and I really liked these muffin cups made with just milk, eggs, pumpkin purée, old fashioned whole grain oats, maple syrup, leavening, and spices and flavoring. These are so delicious and leftovers can be frozen to enjoy later.

Pumpkin Oatmeal Muffin Cups

3. Surprising firsts

While preparing some roasted pumpkin seeds, I guess some wanted to pop rather than roast. Most of the seeds ended up being too immature to consume, meaning there was no seed inside the husk. If we had little children around they could use the bowl full of roasted husks for some kind of crafting activity. When some of the seeds popped,  I thought at first I had a fire starting in my oven. HaHa. So glad that wasn’t the case! The two or three that popped may have been the only ones with a mature seed.

4. A change of scenery

The weather forecasters said there was a possibility we would get snow Tuesday afternoon, but it would most likely be at slightly higher elevations. As it turned out, we got 3” in 2-1/2 hours and our hill was turned into winter wonderland for the rest of the day and evening.

5. Being able to hear in general, and specifically the calls of a very small bird as it flitted from one fir bough to another

Since I was only stopping at the mailbox and didn’t have my camera handy, nor binoculars to get a closer look, its call enabled me to be able to identify it later.

6. Parables from the scriptures and parables one recognizes from one’s own life stories

7. Two good documentary movies to enjoy in a single week

8. Receiving an email from an old friend, someone with whom I had not been in contact for maybe 20 years

9. A former student of my husband, someone my husband taught early on in his teaching career, taking a few minutes of his time to call my husband  this week and thank him for the influence my husband had on his life

10. Vic and our family and the happiness I feel this day

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Wednesday, January 27, 2021

Six Sentence Stories - Ocean

As it has been a while since I have walked on the beach, thanks to the prompt this week from Denise of Girlie On The Edge's Blog who is the host of the Six Sentence Stories blog hop, I get a chance to venture there with via my mind and keyboard. Though technically it is more ramblings, rather than a story, perhaps it will prompt you to do some musing. It is a relaxing adventure. This post is being linked to Six Sentence Stories - Ocean.

Low tide at the beach

At morn as the tide first rushes in and then out, I’m stirred to wakefulness.

Ready to explore the bounty of the seashore at low tide, I venture forth with eyes cast down not wanting to miss a single treasure below me.

Rough barnacles, shimmering jellyfish, starfish grasping to the sides of large rocks revealed by the receding waters, sand dollars, clam shells, glistening agates, and masses of colorful seaweed strung over and around soggy driftwood guide my path hither and yon.

Gulls, sandpipers, and dowitchers leave their impressions upon the waterlogged sand, imprints soon to be erased as the ocean reclaims its space.

The lingering smells clinging to my clothes after exploring the beach, are ones that take me back to where I had been.

My ocean and the images, smells, and sounds that are part of its world soothe my mind at eventide and permeate my space bringing with it peaceful slumber.

Friday, January 22, 2021

Ten Things of Thankful

Sunshine and aw moments and more. . .there are so many reasons to be thankful this week, but I will limit them to just ten and post them to the Ten Things of Thankful blog hop hosted by Dyanne of Backsies Is What There Is Not.

1. Accessibility to a prescription pill that I take once a week is supposed to be user friendly, but the packaging of each individual pill has caused me frustration almost every single time as I try to peel the paper back to get to the spot to break through the foil to get the pill, but not this week! The stars must have been lined up just right this week.

The pill was easily and quickly
removed from this packaging
that usually is difficult for me
to open.

2. Clarity in communication is high on my thankful list this week.

3. My peace plant is beginning to bloom and this somehow seems like the perfect week for that to happen.

Peace plant blossom beginning
to unfold

4. Here  is a shoutout for fingernail files and clippers instead of having to chew my nails or use a piece of flint or a rough stone to shorten them and smooth the edges like those who lived before there were tools made for that purpose.

5. Anticipation can bring with it varying emotions, but the expectation I have as I look forward to the upcoming free Roots Tech virtual event is one of excitement not only for the treat of listening to the presenters but also because I will be able to learn the names of other attendees AND how they descend from some of the same descendants in my family tree. So far of those who registered from all over the world, there are 4,142 people who are connected to me in some way! Every time I check there are more people who have registered and my list of relatives gets larger. In the live conferences we would text and arrange to meet at the conference, but this time I am guessing texting and maybe arranging to email, FaceTime, Zoom, Skype would be things to consider.

(If this sounds interesting and you want to register for the conference, click here. To take full advantage of finding out who your relatives are that will be attending, click here to register for a free familysearch account. For those who are not members of The Church of Latter-day Saints, just ignore the box that members need to check. To create your own family tree on the site, the information on this FamilySearch blog explains how to do that.)

6. I am thankful for the beautiful and inspiring poem written and eloquently shared by Amanda Gorman at the conclusion of the 2021 Presidential Inauguration on Wednesday. I like not only being able to listen to it again, but to read and ponder the words.

7. The swans, egrets, and herons in the fields within just a few miles from us make me appreciate even more where we live.

Egrets are seen here not only now,
but in the summer when this
photo was taken.

8. I am thankful that Kristi encouraged me to write about an experience I’d had over a year ago and submit it to a church magazine. It was printed in the latest issue of the Liahona.

9. With needing to do our grocery shopping early in the morning when fewer people are in the store, I was thankful for a morning when there wasn’t ice on the car windows and ice on the roads. (Although I wear a mask when I go out, I prefer not to be in crowded stores.)

10. Vic and our family make me smile.

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Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Six Sentence Stories - Marvel

If you want to take a break on this historic day, try reading a little six sentence story. It won't take long, and then you can return to whatever you were doing. Denise of Girlie On The Edge's Blog hosts a blog hop geared to those of us who like to keep it short, unless semi-colons get on board, and then you are in for an extra treat. I am linking my post to Six Sentence Stories - Marvel.

Pixabay photo

May I ask exactly which of his three experiments you tried to reproduce?

Andrea, not knowing what impact her words would have, slid one of her hands behind her back, crossed her fingers, looked him in the eyes and slowly, but emphatically, said, “I tried all of them.”

Realizing Andrea didn’t know about the mirror on the wall behind her that revealed her crossed fingers, and he being amazed at her audacity at such a critical point in her studies  calmly waited to see if she might say more.

Venturing to guess she had no idea how much time it would have taken for her to have tried all of them, he said, “When you say you tried all of them, in what way did you try?”

Eager to share what she had discovered but not knowing if he would believe her, she took a deep breath before sharing what would prove to be an astounding discovery. 

Listening intently, he slowly shook his head, marveling that such a famous scientist had not replicated his experiments before publishing the results.

Friday, January 15, 2021

Ten Things of Thankful

Some early morning gratitude pondering from this week of living...

I am linking this post to the Ten Things of Thankful blog hop hosted by Dyanne of Backsies Is What There Is Not.

1. Beautiful sunrise

Brilliant pink and orange clouds against a blue sky with fir 
and oaks trees silhouetted in the foreground

2. Vic was able to get remove this large dead branch after its unsuccessful attempt to leave the tree one morning after a very stormy night.

No limbs had fallen on the lane before I left to run a couple of errands, but when I returned, this limb was hanging down from one of the oak trees and was blocking my way. Vic was able to use the tractor, some rope and a cable to complete the job and then push it off the lane. I am also thankful for a neighbor who was able to come down to give us a hand in removing some of the debris. Biggest thankful was that no one got hurt when the limb crashed to the ground.

3. We didn’t lose power during the storm.

4. Some clothes ordered online didn’t require altering.

5. When something mysteriously stopped working in the car this week, it was not being able to turn on the radio. One doesn't get stranded because a radio doesn't work! 

6. The countless hours of service so many are giving while risking their own lives in the process and for the sacrifices their families are making

7. We are going to be able to watch a movie tonight that is finally available for viewing in our country. We will be fixing some popcorn, of course! 

8. Old military hospital records recently made available online offered insight pertaining to a health challenge my Dad had throughout his life.

9. Thought provoking articles at a time when so many are questioning the sources and slants of the media are helpful and make me think, reconsider, and better understand how others may see and understand things differently.

10. This song sums up my love and gratitude for Vic and our family.

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Thursday, January 14, 2021

Six Sentence Stories - Filter

It is time for another little story. Denise of Girlie On The Edge's Blog faithfully provides new prompts each week to give us a reason for linking to the Six Sentence Stories blog hop. This post is linked to Six Sentence Stories - Filter. Click the link to discover a great assortment of stories all written in just six sentences.

The roadway was strewn with contorted mossy dead limbs creating a naturalist’s jigsaw puzzle scattered like a handful of jacks. Compared to the blasts of wind during the night that orchestrated drumming sounds of fir and pine cones bouncing off rooftops, the metallic vents clashing with one another, plus the thuds of garbage cans being tossed on their sides, the morning brought an almost eerie stillness after the battle of the night. 

A frog’s croaking broke the hush hanging in the air just as her walking partner said, “You’ve been quiet as a clam this morning."

Ignoring her comment momentarily, she forcefully kicked a fallen branch causing it to careen down into a gully lined with a thicket of Oregon grape. The rustling sounds of some deer from behind the nearby vegetation seemed to serve as rosin to activate her voice.  “At this point in time, I think I have something in common with clams since we both have our share of filtering to do; the filtering done by clams improves water clarity while I am trying to see clearly how to just be of help in a certain situation."

Saturday, January 9, 2021

Ten Things of Thankful

Now's not the time to turn your back on jotting down some things for which you are thankful, even if the week may have made you want to turn around and give it another try. This is all the more reason to search deep down and pull out those thankfuls. I am linking mine up to the blog hop Ten Things of Thankful hosted by Dyanne of Backsies Is What There Is Not.

Three alpacas facing away from the viewer
as they eat from pans on the floor

1. For historical records so we can be reminded of the rise and fall of governments and why

2. For COVID-19 vaccines beginning to be administered in more areas and more frequently 

3. For those in the US Capitol who helped those who serve the people of this country get to safe places this week when the building was stormed by intruders intent on destruction and mayhem

4. For discovering one of my orchids looks like it will have a blossom sometime this spring

5. For answer to prayers even when the answer came in a way not quite how I expected but I realized that was exactly the right answer

6. For finding out that our son got his first choice on an upcoming change in a responsibility

7. For discovering drum music that has such calming tones

8. For comfortable footwear

9. For children (with grown children of their own) who can laugh and realize that their mother will never forget the names of her babies when they see a maiden name instead of their married name on a Christmas check

10. For Vic who supports, commiserates, laughs, steps up to do tasks that are difficult for me to do, encourages, and continues to love me as we go through these interesting times together

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Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Six Sentence Stories - Zip

What a day this has been! This post has been influenced by the events of the day. Since I hadn't prepared my post earlier, my creative juices couldn't seem to find a place to circulate and come together in any other way than what you see below, which is more a list of questions to ponder. I am linking this to Six Sentence Stories - Zip hosted by Denise of Girlie on the Edge's Blog.

Do you think the images will stay etched in our memories like some of the other images that were displayed on the screens earlier on and people were aghast at the sight and somehow knew things would not be the same in the future or at least hoped would never happen again?

Was your heart stirred as you listened to those telling of their experiences as they were under siege?

Did you imagine yourself having to endure such actions, such violence?

Are you prone to let others speak the words you think, or would like to speak but feel others might say them so much more eloquently?

Did you zip your lips when the words of those who have a lot of power, even malicious power, tried to make you rethink what you knew to be true, and if so, why?

Do you feel your words and actions matter, that they possibly could make a difference going forward?

Friday, January 1, 2021

Ten Things of Thankful

 It is New Year's Day and the beginning of a fresh new year waiting to see  what we all will do with this time we are given, and how we will interact with others. 

With that very short comment, I will precede to the purpose of this post. The one thing I hope will remain the same this year is my participation in this blog hop, because it causes me to do some reflecting on my past week, or sometimes just my life in general and express my gratitude in writing. I know that I benefit from reading what other contributors to Ten Things of Thankful have to say, if only to think, "Yep, me too."  Dyanne of Backsies Is What There Is Not is the host of Ten Things of Thankful.

1. For a FB friend who is also a distant relative mentioning a book she started reading

The historical fiction novel set during the French Revolution is a collaborative effort by six authors (kind of reminds me of the efforts of certain participants in the blog hop, Six Sentence Stories). The main characters are all women.

2. For Granny Smith apples

For many years I have used whatever pies I have had on hand to make apple pies. There have been very few, if any, that were made using Granny Smith apples. This New Year’s Eve I made one using Granny Smith apples. Other than cutting back on the amount of sugar and salt called for in the recipe, everything else was the same. Just saying, I won’t every use any apples other than Granny Smith’s to make pies from now on. Note: There is an interesting “apple genealogy” about the Granny Smith apple.

3. For being able to receive and give a little when there is too much of a particular dish for one household 

Being able to do both was a blessing to both parties.

4. For being able to participate in another family collaborated Spotify playlist, this time a New Year’s playlist

What are your favorite songs to listen to on New Year’s Eve? If you made your own playlist, did you add some songs that were particularly apropos for 2020?

5. For the many ways we have to watch movies we may have missed seeing when they were first released

On New Year’s Eve we watched a movie that was first released in 1993 and which we had never watched. I enjoy movies that are based on fact, as well as movies that make me think about the impact one's actions have on the lives of others. This provided both for me.

6. For some long phone conversations with some of my forever friends who no longer live in the area and with whom our conversations seem to pick right up from when we last spoke as though no time has elapsed

7. For products that have no expiration date

When both Vic and I were growing up, we were familiar with a particular product used to treat the udders of cows. The farmers who applied the balm also received the added benefit of relief from chapped hands. After we got married, we obtained some for our medicine cabinet, not because we had any cows then, but for some other reason or another. We don’t still have the same container as then. The date I wrote on the bottom of the current can says 10/2007, so it has been a while. This morning I decided maybe I’d try some on a small crack on my heel, since the regular salve I’ve been using isn’t working. Upon googling to see if there is an expiration date for the balm, I was pleasantly surprised to learn that there isn’t! 

8. For the creative efforts shared by friends

One of our friends likes to write poetry and for a few years has blessed us with a book of his most recent unpublished poems each Christmas. We enjoy reading his writings which sometimes are about places and experiences with which we are familiar.

9. For the kalanchoe plants that I transplanted last June beginning to bloom

When I transplanted them I questioned whether really transplanting them into almost completely dry soil could possibly be the right thing to do, but I followed the experts and now I am looking forward to the red blooms expanding.

 Kalanchoe blossoming

10. 2021 with Vic by my side to face what come what may

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