Thursday, November 28, 2013

with a thankful heart

table is set
turkey's in the oven
I've reached that moment
where I can relax
because I know it will all be ready
by 2 p.m. as planned
and now my heart can swell
with all that I am thankful for
simple things like
waking to a snow flaked world
holiday music filling the house
nibbling on the most delicious
chocolate chip cookie
that a friend recently shared with me
there was something different 
about that cookie
I insisted
and she shared
willing to tell me her secret
(thanks friend)
milk chocolate chips
and oh what a wonderful dance
it does play on the tongue
thank you, Jennifer!
remembering my yesterday
James helping with the cleaning
 mom helping in the kitchen
chopping and laughing and storytelling
what fun the preparations can be
when there is someone there to talk to
she washed as we went along
we taste-tested
and shared a coffee
at the pauses
with those warm buttery cookies 
sister Sue joined us
and stayed for a pizza dinner
that Joey drove to get
love those young...eager...I'll do it drivers
had some holiday cheer
Rudy and James willingly went to get
the necessary ingredients
Crown Royal and Vernor's high ball
 more talking 
more laughing
Hallmark watching
first thing this morning
I got a phone call from my baby sister, Mary
asking for the turkey hot-line
with a turkey too big for the roasting pan
together we came up with solutions
look for another pan
un-tuck the wings and make that bird fit
just cut those dang things off
shared a good laugh
across the miles
like only sisters can
and once again
with each passing year
I clearly see
it truly is the simple things
that make my heart 

Enjoy the symphony!

Happy Thanksgiving.

Monday, November 25, 2013


words just get in the way.


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

November Soup

I know...
I had you at soup!

With a kitchen full of 
fresh vegetables
after a recent visit to 
Toledo's Farmer's Market
it was

time to get busy.

Creamy Cauliflower and Broccoli Soup
it's all in there
but wait!
to make it extra special
whipped up some biscuits 
that had my boys
thinking I stopped at
Kentucky Fried...
it's all vegan.
it's all so good.

warm from the oven
that you tear in half
sniff the wafting steam
dollop on the Earth Balance
 drizzle a little honey

plated for the photo op
and for easy transport 
to the living room
where I'll sit by the fire
watch tv
with lots of

two of the major players
Does that say chicken seasoning?!
but wait...
a quick look and I found
chicken "style" seasonings...
no chicken.
All the meat...

All my family-favorite recipes
made into vegan goodness.

Share worthy stuff.
(click to enlarge and read)

the flip side
for directions.


almost forgot the biscuits
which trust me
will make any meal better.

6-Ingredient Vegan Biscuits
1) 2 cups unbleached flour
2) 4 teaspoons baking powder
3) 1 tablespoon sugar
4) 3/4 teaspoon salt
5) 1/4 cup coconut oil (room temp)
6) 1 cup almond milk

Preheat oven to 450.
Whisk dry ingredients.
Cut in coconut oil.
Stir in almond milk.
Knead gently on floured surface, 8-10 times.
Pat dough into 3/4 inch thickness.
Cut into circles with top of drinking glass.
Arrange on baking sheet.
Bake 8-10 minutes.


Now go to your local market
and get your soup on.
(you can thank me later)

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

these full fall days

came and went
with such ferocious pace
I feel dizzy from the aftermath

day to day 
happenings like
cleaning and shopping
pet care
more cleaning
we have 3 bathrooms...eew
 because we all need more of that
mix in
part-time work
just to put a cherry on top of it all
you get it...
day to day
all year long

this post is about 
those extras in life that need attending
some joyous
some not so much

a wedding fits in the first category

our oldest
eloped with his bride
and they had a beautiful party
to celebrate
Angela is a vegetarian chef
how perfect is that?

it goes
almost without saying
that the food was made and catered
by jake and angela
with a little help from our gang
and grandma of course!

not one picture of the 
happy couple

oh yes i do!
i hope you appreciate
that i stopped what i was doing
(blogging mid-week!)
to take that pic
and post
just for you.

but wasn't it so worth it?
they have a friend who is a graphic artist
and they made these magnets
as a gift to guests
so sweet

onto the not so fun category
but so glad to have it

one of those fast-paced weekends
were tagged to paint the porch
rain out
joe decided he wanted his room
painted so we pointed
our brushes in his direction
elephant skin

just enough gray
without being dingy
mixed with 

goes great with what he
already has
the only extra expense
the curtains
since his roman shades were
literally falling apart

i need to footnote here
that we are not the kind to
change paint colors
in our bedrooms
on a regular basis
in fact
joe's room hadn't been painted since it 
was added to our home
15 years ago!
how time does fly.
boy did it need it.

these pictures are obviously
not propped
he still wants to hang some posters
which i will let him.
the rest is his gig.

one last view
taken in the middle of the afternoon
blackout curtains
for the gamer
where glare is the enemy

they were from target
cheap and energy efficient
my boy is happy


on a sunny weekday
because you can't wait for
a nice weekend
once mid-autumn approaches

painted that porch
railings and framing

the floor!

going for the moss green
that i loved on this
gooseberry patch cover

came close
although in this lighting
it looks more gray
which i'm good with
it too is

went for another angle.
still seeing gray.

i'm thinking a touch-up in the spring
will make it 

outdoor furniture put away
garden put to rest
(almost...still have some cabbage and jalapenos!)
brought plants in

that couldn't survive
being left out

more family gatherings
a halloween that wasn't
we just went out for dinner
kinda sad
leaves still need raking
 planning for upcoming holidays
that will be here
 before we know it

since november is the 
second fastest month of the year

and then
 the brakes hit.

otherwise known as

now i'm off to write my novel 
in a month.
that's nanowrimo
check it out!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

things that make you go....hmmm

free writing
that's what i'm tagging this.
looked it up
and guess what?
it's out there

but my spin is unique
in that i am "prompt-less"
in other words
devising a post without a clear theme
in mind.

rambling about.
wandering aimlessly.
there's a freedom in removing
clear-cut objectives
not knowing where this may lead
but stepping forward
into unknown territory.
all in the same breath.

could have something to do with
(national writing month)
or simply
i've run-out of reason.

there it is.

homeschool just entered my brain
creating a segue with

with my recent employment
(teetering as it is...another post)
i have been taking
an unusual approach to
home education
that i can quickly rationalize
and give credence to
by calling it what it is
interest-led learning
in its

not manipulating the learning environment
with my agenda.
as much as i have read and heard
about those who claim to be 
what i find instead are
under-cover traditionalists
enforce their objectives
in a sneaky kind of way...
eliminating television
having only "classic lit" available in the home
enforcing "their" rules
on fitness...nutrition...academia
which makes me wonder
if interest-led
can truly be 
guided and monitored 
by the student

now that takes trust.

you may come home from work
and ask the vitally
important question
what did you do today?
to the answer you least want to hear...

as you explore deeper
and ask the right question
what did you learn today?
you still hear
answers concerning

boy culture.

that had this mom running to
ted talks
for reassurance 
and found it.

this in no way is
intended to 
criticize the aforementioned
educational construct
it is meant to shed some light
bring some peace 
possibly show
there is another way.

it may be lacking in perfection.
it may leave me feeling
not knowing the outcome of such
an experiment.

it may have me jumping back into
the leaf pile of that which
i am comfortable.

for now
at least this very moment
i will accept
the peace 
that comes from knowing
that as hard as i try
i can't control everything.
i must accept
the rocky terrain
 and stumble 
in faith

and revel in