Saturday, July 19, 2008

Christmas in July

While on our day trip to Belfast Thursday, we not only visited Perry's Nut House, we also visited Genie Francis's The Cherished Home. That link is on my sidebar. (I even think that Genie was there that day. Not absolutely certain, but a very lovely gal was standing at the counter saying to call her if there was anything that the clerk needed. I was surprised by how beautiful and thin she was!)

Her shop is so charming, but I could tell that my beloved was feeling a bit awkward in there. He was very patient, though, as he always is.

But! I found these and if anyone has a very, very good memory, you'll know that I've been wanting them since December when my dear friend Mrs.G gifted my grands and their parents with the wonderful Santa egg caps. (Don't worry about reading the entire posts, just look for the photos.)



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So now we begin the melding of households. I've done this before with my sister, but never before with a husband. (Well, unless you can call someone bringing his clothes along.) My husband has a big barn and a small home. He has lots of things. He's busy going through it all. What a lot of work!

Yesterday, he told me that he was bringing me a little girl whom I'd love as she was very quiet and well behaved. He was right.



He thinks of her as a Claudia; I call her Emmy.

Oh it's grand to have a man about the house...the things that he'll help me with today...hauling dump, doing dishes, folding laundry. He's already helped make the bed. Love it!!

Have a happy Saturday!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Five Things I Love MEME

Marye tagged me for this one at her new blog Simply Home Remedies.

I'm supposed to list five things that I love and tag five others — I am not tagging anyone; I'm tagging everyone! Marye purposely left out all of her family and friends...left out the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost...left out air, shelter, and sustenance. She was specific and used photos to complement her thoughts. It was so good that I'm going to copy her.

Perhaps we could think of these as five things I really, really like. Love is such a strong word.

1. I really, really like Day Trips. Hope that we get to take a lot more of them. Yesterday found us wending our way up US 1 along the coast to a favorite restaurant.



2. I really, really like quaint villages on blue harbors.



3. Beautiful flowers on display in unique ways are things that I really, really like.










4. What's not to really, really like about fudge?












5. I really, really like to play with Photoshop. This should satisfy all those of you who have requested a wedding photo. Since we celebrated with a very simple ceremony on a crazy hot and humid day, it was no big to-do, but here ya go...



Thanks so much for reading and, should you decide to do this one, please let me know! I want to read yours, too.

A Happy TGIF to you all!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Rhubarb Bread

The rhubarb patch is wilting down as it does this time of year. In my corner, rhubarb is best from May through June, but just in case there's still rhubarb in your corner, I'm sharing my rhubarb bread recipe. This delicious recipe would also work with blueberries and since they are nearly ready here, I'll be baking this bread again soon. I can't wait!




Rhubarb Bread

Ingredients:

* 1½ cups brown sugar
* 2/3 cups cooking oil
* 2 eggs beaten
* 1 cup buttermilk (or sour regular milk with a TBS of vinegar)
* 1 tsp baking soda
* 3 tsp vanilla
* 1 tsp salt
* 2 ½ cups flour
* 1 ½ cups thinly sliced rhubarb
* ½ cup chopped nuts
* 1 TBS melted butter
* 1/3 cup sugar

Method:

Combine brown sugar, oil, and eggs
Combine buttermilk, soda, and vanilla in a separate bowl
Add mixtures together with flour and salt
Fold in rhubarb and nuts
Pour into two greased loaf pans
Drizzle melted butter over the top
Sprinkle with the 1/3 cup white sugar
Bake at 325° for 45 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean (be sure that the middle is firm)


If you try this, I promise that you'll love it!

We are off for a day trip to the ocean. Gotta love being between the mountains and the sea as I know so many of us lucky ones are.

My love asked me this morning where I was when we were young enough to have made different choices. Silly boy! THIS is OUR time.

Have a fantastic Thursday! (I'll be catching up with everyone later!)

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Pondering the Quest for Imperfection

Striving for excellence motivates you; striving for perfection is demoralizing. ~Harriet Braiker

Linda invited me to join her in a discussion that she's having this week at Restyled Home about imperfection, specifically The Quest for Imperfection.

Several years ago now, I was absolutely addicted to an afternoon television program called Starting Over. Some of you may remember the premise...a house full of women in crisis came together and two life coaches helped them to "think differently." Or as a friend says, "Don't be bitter, be better."

The women had to do a number of "life exercises" that provided them a picture of how to move forward. One of the women was a perfectionist and her assignment was to find the beauty in imperfection. I believe that Iyanla Vanzant was her coach.

That exercise changed me. It really did. I was hopelessly stuck in perfectionism. Nothing limits us so much as working hard to become something we can never be.

I thought of that exercise as I was out taking pictures this morning. We see "imperfection" in nature all the time. Imperfection gets woven into the fabric of the scene and creates the dimension, contrast, texture, and interest. It's the same with our own person and with our homes.

This branch died suddenly this summer. (Can death be beautiful? Hmmm, thoughts for another day.)







A part of my neighbor's tree fell during a storm while we were in Vermont revealing just how badly damaged it has been. Beautiful and dangerous!



In my own home, I have plenty of examples...



That's not a wide-planked pine floor...that's subflooring.



And that's the gap between the molding and the cabinets that my contractor left. Good thing I married him! (Now he's telling me that this is not a good thing because the carpenter's wife always gets her work done last, which is why there are no new stairs at the carpenter's house. Well I never!)

As for actually desiring imperfection in my home...oh yes! Anyone who loves old furniture, old dishes, and an assortment of vintage things loves the imperfect. I love old mirrors with splotches and wood with cracks and age showing.



Now if we could only learn to love our own imperfections the same way, but here's a little product that I just purchased and love. I found it at Kohl's. Kinda pricey, but oh boy howdy does it ever work! (For at least an hour or two. ;>)



Create a fantastic Wednesday! (Echoes of Starting Over.)


Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering.
There is a crack in everything,
That's how the light gets in.

~Leonard Cohen

ETA: Sometimes we get our lessons in a big way! This morning, Blogger isn't showing any of my pictures or even my header. Ackkkk! Okay, I'll work on this later. The carpenter wants his breakfast.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Gifts

Every gift from a friend is a wish for your happiness. ~ Richard Bach



Thank you, my dear friend! They are beautiful and smell divine and they're still going strong!

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Packages in the mail are so much fun! On June 29, Kari celebrated her My One Year Blog-iversary Giveaway and I won! So exciting let me tell you!

And what was in the box? Wonderful things that's what...



And here some of them are in their new homes...









This morning's newlywed news?

"Say, Hon, who do we have on our hit list?" John asks.

That's enough to give one pause, eh? (He meant playlist, but I actually could think of a few for the first.) :D

Have a heavenly day!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Just Plain Fun to Read Award

This post marks my 300th. Three hundred doesn't seem like that many to me now, but there was a time when I was quite certain that I was all done with blogging. Some of you reading today are feeling that way now. I want to encourage you to just keep on keeping on. Write when time and the muse allow and write about anything. Anything can be blog worthy and you never know what topic sparks someone's interest.

July 22 will mark one year of blogging for me, which, for reasons stated above, I never thought I'd see. I'm planning a fun giveaway to combine both events...my 300th post and my first year anniversary. Stay tuned!

Gee, it's so hard to concentrate when one has just been whirled about the room in a little waltz. This is a different way to begin the morning. :D

Okay, back to business...



NanaTrish @ http://nanaslivingthedream.blogspot.com/ and Pat @ http://millefiorifavoriti.blogspot.com/ both gave me this wonderful award. It's cute and what a great sentiment! So many blogs are just plain fun to read.

Now I get to award six blogs and I am choosing six that make me laugh. Not that they don't also make me think or make me cry, but mostly they make me laugh. And I'm not worrying one fig if these bloggers have already received this award either because whether one chooses to accept it is entirely up to her. Entirely!

* Suzanne of At Home with the Farmer's Wife

* Chocolate Chic @ Chocolatechic

* Sandi @ Holding Patterns

* Kari @ Just Livin' Large

* Linds @ Rocking Chair Reflections

* Lovella @ What Matters Most

I'm not sure that this one comes with any rules so make up your own! (I've checked, truly, but can't find any.)

Enjoy this fantastic Monday!

(On a side note, I'm going to attempt answering a few questions in yesterday's comments, if anyone is interested.)

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Deeply Grateful

At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us. ~Albert Schweitzer

Your friends will know you better in the first minute they meet you than your acquaintances will know you in a thousand years. ~Richard Bach




Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones. ~Proverbs 16:24
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Pleasant words are a banana split and a hot fudge/caramel sundae and healing to the bones if not to the hips. ~Vee's paraphrase of Proverbs 16:24
Both John and I wish to thank everyone for the sweet comments and the support that has been shown over the past several days. He tells me that he understands my love for Blogdom and so many of you now.
I am not sure what it is about the community of friendship that has been created here and why it doesn't exist in my real life. Perhaps someone with a background in psychology could explain it to me. All I know is that without you, I'd be diminished.
Have a wonderful, blessed Sunday for it is the beginning of another delicious week!

DB