Monday, June 30, 2008

Tales from the CSA box - June 30

More fresh veggies! We finally got something I have no idea what to do with. Celery Root! Usually we get a newsletter from the CSA that has recipes and a preview of what we can expect in our box. I didn't get a newsletter so I guess I have to figure out how to use celery root. I don't have any experience with fennel either, but I know it can be sauted or roasted.

I'll post a recipe when I decide what to do with that alien looking root.

Grom volunteered to eat the strawberries.

Daybook June 30, 2008

FOR TODAY... June 30, 2008
  • Outside My Window... The sound of work and business. I hear a lot of trucks and traffic on the highway. I hear workers nearby building.
  • I am thinking... about refinement. I want to be refined - that the ugly, that the lazy would be removed, that I would be effective and closer to my Lord.
  • I am thankful for... my sister is home from the hospital. I am so blessed.
  • From the kitchen... a fresh salad for a Fellowship Dinner at church tonight.
  • I am wearing... yet again... black crocs flip-flops, orange t-shirt, black short capris.
  • I am creating... a new brain. I have been having a lot of fun modifying a composition notebook into a brain book - very customized.
  • I am going... to get some things crossed off my to do list - starting with this.
  • I am reading... Still reading the Mike Huckabee book. Started some Christian short stories - I'm afraid they might be "romantic".
  • I am hoping... the girls will be home soon. Grom has fun at VBS this week at a local church - not the church we are regulars at.
  • I am hearing... machines.
  • Around the house... it's a season of decluttering and organization. A little hear and a little there. Where did all this stuff come from?
  • One of my favorite things... shopping for produce (and especially strawberries) at Farmer's Market. The fruits and veggies always look so delicious.
  • A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week: 4WD Club Meeting, 4th of July Parade - Grom is riding his tricycle and has a bubble machine rigged up so that bubbles follow him.
  • Here is picture thought I am sharing...
Read other Daybook's at Peggy's Blog, The Simple Woman.

Friday, June 27, 2008


photo by Irish Philladelphia Photo (Flickr)

My frugal friend Rebecca has sent the following instructions:

Answer the four questions, let the tagger know you've answered them, then tag four fellow bloggers. Let them know by leaving a comment on their blogs.

So, here goes....

10 years ago: I can't remember 1998. Nothing really stands out in my mind. I'd been married to Surferman for 2 years. I imagine we were starting to try to have kids. I was working with my parents. We had an Assisted Living Facility for Seniors. I was getting involved more at church. Our church got it's first "permanent location". I was driving a white Mercury Pillager Villager.

5 things on my list today: It's Fabulous Fun Friday with Mommy and Duke!
  1. Coffee with a Mommy Friend
  2. Gymnastics (Grom of course! I've never been able to do a cartwheel, even as a kid)
  3. Quick stop at Costco for blueberries and ?
  4. Laundry (but I'm not complaining)
  5. Finish postcards for a swap

Snacks I enjoy:

Is coffee a snack? Chocolate, Cheese Puffs (Barbara's White Cheddar are the best. I have Grom addicted. He calls himself my cheese puff boy.) I'd like to enjoy other things more - like fruit (I seem to save it for my family).

Things I would do if I were a millionaire:

Pay off the house. Travel. Find a business for Surferman that would be less hard on his (getting older) body. Be as generous with others as I want to be.

If I was a multi-millionaire, (A million just doesn't go as far as it used to, sigh) I'd do the above AND buy my church a beautiful building.

Places I have lived:

San Gabriel Valley in Southern California - Greeneville, TN - Central Coast of California.

I'm tagging... nobody. But if you blog and want to do this, do it and let me know about it.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Create in me a clean heart, O God,
And renew a steadfast spirit within me.
Do not cast me away from Your presence,
And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me. 
Restore to me the joy of Your salvation,
And uphold me by Your generous Spirit.

Psalm 51:10-12 NKJV

photo by Arwen Abendstern (Flickr)

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Wednesdays are Wonderful

(Most) every Wednesday I sneak out of the house early and meet a friend for coffee.  Actually I drink coffee and she watches me drink coffee.  We used to walk when Grom was passive enough to sit in a stroller.  Maybe we'll walk again someday.  Maybe Grom will get better at riding his trike or I'll get up the nerve to duct tape him in a stroller.  Time will tell.

Wednesday morning coffee is one of the bright spots in my weekly routine.  We talk and talk for about an hour and then we go about our days in our separate ways.  We catch up with each other and then head out to new adventures so that we have something to talk about the next week.  It's the best.  She's the best.

I appreciate her because...
she points me to the Word.  
she can (and does) laugh at herself.
I know she is a true confidante.
she doesn't want anything from me.
she truly cares and truly prays. 

I appreciate her because she wants to be more like Jesus.

We are very different.  She's single and fit.  I'm married and not.  She loves dogs.  I love hot dogs.  You get the picture... We don't really have a lot in common except that we both love Jesus. 

It's more than enough.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Presenting the Princesses

Introducing my nieces...
Peanut Butter
Her parents named her
Margaret Ruth
4 pounds 10 ounces
17 1/2 inches long

and Jelly
Her parents named her
Beatrice Elaine
"Bea (Bee-ahh)"
5 pounds 5 ounces
18 inches long

The whole family is doing well.  Can't wait to have all those girls home.

Thanks for praying.

Peanut Butter and Jelly are coming!

photo by Tanakawho (Flickr)

My sister is delivering her daughters today.  We have been waiting 34 weeks for these precious little girls.  We had hoped it would be a little longer, but God's timing is perfect.  Grom nicknamed them Peanut Butter and Jelly long ago.  He is very excited to meet his new cousins.  I'm very excited to have new babies to cuddle and hold.  

Please pray.
Safe delivery for mom and girls.
Strength and leadership for dad.
Short  hospital stays for all.
Easy transition to home for the family.
That both girls would be great  feeders and sleepers.
That my sister could relax and enjoy being a mommy.
That these girls would never know a day apart from the Lord

Monday, June 23, 2008

Win a Pear

Not to be confused with an Apple.  Pear Budget is an online budgeting tool that looks really cool and you could win.  (If I don't win, I really hope you do.  But honestly, I'm telling you about this giveaway so I'll get another chance to win).

Surferman and I have been a lot better with budgeting, but I know we could be tighter.  We don't track every cent.  I think Pear Budget could help.

Go see simple mom - leave a comment and if I don't win, maybe you could.

Photo by cwbuecheler (Flickr) 

What's for Dinner - Week of June 23rd

No recipes this week.  So I decided to take a picture of my menu pad and share that instead of doing all that typing.  Click the photo and it'll get bigger if you need help reading it.

Lots of people are eating this week.  See their menus at Organizing Junkie's Menu Plan Monday.

Tales from the CSA box - June 23

Stoked again!  It's going to be like Christmas around here on Mondays.  It's so fun to go through the box and see what goodies we get to eat this week.


Daybook June 23, 2008

FOR TODAY ... JUNE 23, 2008
  • Outside My Window... darkness.  It's been a busy day.  This is the first "me" computer time I've had all day. 
  • I am thinking... whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. I'm feeling sad, angry, hurt, confused and more about something.  I want to trust God.  I want to understand. 
  • I am thankful for... My husband.  He was away this weekend visiting his father.  It's good to have him home.
  • From the kitchen... Surferman grilled up 4 packages of boneless skinless chicken breasts tonight.  He cooked them perfectly.  They are so juicy.  We'll have some of them for dinner the next few days and the rest went to the freezer for quick meals later.  I bought pectin today to make some freezer strawberry jam.
  • I am wearing... the usual.  Black cargo capris, light pink V-neck t-shirt, black flip flops and a beautiful pony bead bracelet Grom made for me last week.
  • I am creating... postcards for a swap with the Five in a Row ladies.  We started receiving postcards and are having fun finding where they came from on a US map.
  • I am going... to try to get to bed early and I am getting up early to read my Bible tomorrow morning.
  • I am hoping... for a quiet, uneventful week at church.  My pastors are all out of town.
  • I am hearing... silence, sweet silence.
  • Around the house... clutter, clutter and more clutter.  I have to do something about all of this stuff.  It's driving me crazy.
  • One of my favorite things... the smell of a freshly bathed Grom
  • A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week: I want to get my family out for an evening of Bocce.
  • Here is picture thought I am sharing...

Grom's Lunch 1

I've been reading a great Bento Blog for a while.  I'm inspired.  Biggie assembles the most beautiful lunches and shares them regularly.  Her preschooler seems to eat anything and everything.  I can only aspire.  Here's what I came up with for Grom tomorrow - carrots with ranch dressing, herb breadstick (wrapped in foil), sausage and cheese swords and nilla wafers.  He'll get some leftover fruit salad in a separate container.

Read other Daybook's at Peggy's Blog, The Simple Woman.

Monday, June 16, 2008

What's for Dinner - Week of June 16th

Another week... another Menu Plan.

Stir Fry Veggies (Broccoli, Green Beans, Sugar Snap Peas, Carrots) 
with Tofu and Chicken
LO Cabbage Crunch Salad

LO BBQ Chicken
Roasted Beets
Green Salad
LO Potato Salad

Pasta with Basil, Garlic, Summer Squash
Green Salad
Garlic Bread

Family Outing to Farmer's Market

Surferman leaving for MN, dinner plans???

Mommy and Grom Funfest Extravaganza!
details tbd


Veggie Soup 
Cabbage, Kale, Broccoli, Cauliflower and more

Daybook June 16, 2008

FOR TODAY - JUNE 16, 2008...

Outside My Window... all is still.  It's dark.  I wanted to start posting a Daybook this week - looks like it's a Nightbook this week.

I am thinking... about veggies - organic veggies, growing my own veggies, cooking veggies, strawberries (ok those are a fruit).

I am thankful for... playing cars, reading Charlotte's Web, time with Grom, that we had the money to send Surferman to see his Dad without financial stress, for the small things - I am SO blessed!

From the kitchen... Veggie Stir Fry - Brocolli, Green Beans, Sugar Snap Peas, Carrots and Tofu
I am wearing... Black t-shirt with maroon t-shirt on top, black cargo capri pants (my favorites) and Croc flip flops

I am creating... started knitting a kitchen wash cloth yesterday.

I am going... to go start a couple of loads of laundry before bed.  I also need to get my purse cleaned out, cash envelopes divvied up (it's the 16th, hello!).  

I am reading... Finding Alice by Melanie Carlson - not sure about this book yet

I am hoping... my sister can keep her babies (twin girls) gestating a few more (at least 3) weeks.  She's hospitalized with preeclampsia.  Please pray for her.

I am hearing... I have the TV on.

Around the house... still working on Grom's school room, dining room chairs are being painted (black) and we're welcoming summer.

One of my favorite things... coffee (decaf is great) with milk or half and half.  Love me a decaf misto.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week: I need a new brain (book).  What I'm doing just isn't working and something needs to work.  Surferman leaves Friday to go see his Dad (currently hospitalized).  We'll be eating veggies. Grin.

Here is picture thought I am sharing...
From our vacation.  A Bald Eagle on the bank of the Rogue River.  It was eating prey.  The birds hovering are Turkey Vultures waiting for leftovers.

Read other Daybook's at Peggy's Blog, The Simple Woman.

Tales from the CSA box - June 16

We bought a subscription to the CSA program at our local university.  We'll be getting fresh, organic veggies and some fruits all summer long.  We bought a large share with local delivery for $27.50/week.

Surferman picked up our first box this week.  They like to recycle the box they transport the veggies in, so Surferman decided to load the items onto what he promises me was a clean towel in the back of his Volvo.
Yep,  that's his surfboard and gear.  Those are my beautiful veggies.
Here's what we got...  1 bunch of beets, 1 bunch of carrots, 1 bunch of baby red onions, 1 head of butter lettuce, 1 bunch of basil, 1 head of cabbage, 2 stalks of broccoli, 2 small heads of cauliflower (one that I'm hoping tastes like cheese - but I doubt it - it's a lovely cheddar color), 1 bunch of kale?, 3 heads of garlic, a couple sprigs of rosemary, a box of blackberries, a half a dozen baby summer squashes and a softball sized zucchini?.

I'm excited to figure out how to work it into our meal plan.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Online with Grom

Found a fun free online maze website for Grom.
It's really cute.  The player is the ladybug and tries to find its way home.  There is no "out" or time limit, so the game continues until the goal is achieved. 

The ladybug is maneuvered with the arrow keys.  Grom is learning  up / down / right / left and the eye-hand control to stop the ladybug where he wants it to stop.  I love the noise (and am good at mimicking the noise) made when the ladybug reaches her house.  I love to make Grom laugh.  
I think there are about 7 puzzles before it ends.  Refresh the page and the game will start over again at the beginning.  Very fun.

Done #11 - Visit Surferman's parents in Washington State

Back in May we visited Surferman's Mom and Step-Bob in Washington state.  We arrived in Anacortes just in time for their annual Waterfront Festival.  We were expecting "Washington weather" - cool, foggy, maybe some rain, instead we were blessed with their warmest day of the year.
There was a lot of fun things to do and see at the festival.

Tons of activities for kids.  Grom was finally old enough to get to do a lot of things.  Grom and his Grandpa built a wood boat.  He got to talk to firemen, policemen, fishermen, and more.

One of the highlights was doing the bungee jump.  When I first saw it I thought it looked really fun but never imagined that Grom would be brave enough to give it a try.  

I  guess all that time in that bounce house at Farmer's Market and his gymnastics class has made him brave. He loved it. He flew at least 30 feet into the air - laughing and smiling the whole time.  

I love this picture of his just his feet.  It makes me smile and remember his loud laugh.

I can now say I've been yachting.  Too bad it's not on my list to 101 Things to Do.  

The local yacht club was giving free cruises.  It was a great ride - there are so many beautiful homes waterfront.  I learned a lot about yachting.  Think RV on the water...

We drove home from Anacortes to Portland, OR to Grants Pass, OR to Fortuna, CA (to visit Uncle Danny) and finally home. 

It was  a great vacation.

My Strawberry Secret

It's strawberry season!

I love this time of the year.  When Farmer's Market smells wonderful, the air is full of strawberries.  I go from farmer to farmer to see how much they are charging, how big the berries are and who is offering pesticide free berries.  

Organic strawberries at my local Farmer's Markets are rare and very expensive.  A few of the local growers offer berries they advertise as "unsprayed" or "no pesticides" as a piece of cardboard is cheaper and easier than organic certification.  I know that conventional strawberries are on the list of fruits to eat organic - buying locally and "no pesticide" seems to be a reasonable (for my budget and health) compromise.

We mostly eat them raw - washed and sliced.  Sometimes in a bowl of cereal, sometimes with some vanilla ice cream, sometimes on a waffle with whip cream.  We buy them by the 1/2 flat (6 baskets) and even the flat when we want to put some in the freezer.

While strawberries are delicious they are also fragile.  One day gorgeous and ready to eat, the next mushy and moldy.  I have discovered how to help them keep.  

Here's how...
When you get them home put them into a sealed plastic container - air tight.  Don't wash them.  Don't fuss with them.  Just get them into a tuperware type container as soon as possible and then store them in the refrigerator.  Most will keep a week or more.

Enjoy those strawberries while they are at their glorious best.

photo by: jslander (Flickr)

Monday, June 09, 2008

What's for Dinner - Week of June 9th


Weekly Family Dinner
Mixed Grill - Chicken Thighs, Chicken-Apple Sausage, Marinated Ahi, Sirloin K-Bobs 
(aka clean that old meat out of the freezer)
Assorted Roasted Veggies
(aka clean those wilty veggies out of the fridge)
Citrus Blueberry Green Salad
(aka use up those funky looking oranges)

Bean and Cheese Burritos
Roasted Beet Salad
Mexican Rice

Kitchen Sink Bean Soup with Sausage

Stir Fry Green Beans, Cauliflower and Tofu

Steak and a Movie Night


Graduation Celebration 
(I have 2 cousins graduating from college!)
Chicken and Sausage

Millions (almost) of menus can be found at Organizing Junkie's Menu Plan Monday.

Mt Washmore - more thoughts

I'm on my second day of being diligent about laundry.  Big deal, you say.  I say, I have to start somewhere and here I am - day 2.  Don't worry, I won't be posting every day about my laundry.

Today I found a kindred spirit - a woman who like me doesn't enjoy doing the laundry; a woman who dreads doing laundry.  If she likes chocolate and coffee, I know we could be great friends.  This Flourishing Mother, Andrea recently posted about Textile Management.  (Make it sound fancy and it's still washing dirty clothes - sigh).  

She shared a heart changing quote...
Even so seemingly non transcendent an act as putting clothing away can be a gesture of memory or of hope. We put laundry away in drawers and closets in the expectation that another day or season will come when we will need those things again. We pack away baby clothes in boxes in the hope that another child or grandchild will be added to the family or that an opportunity will come to pass things along to others who will use them. We save articles of clothing that belonged to a loved one who died, remembering the body that used to be clothed in these things and hoping for the day when our bodies and theirs will finally be truly, gloriously clothed.
~Margaret Kim Peterson 
Keeping House: The Litany of Everyday Life
and then Andrea summed it up so beautifully...
Doing laundry is symbolic of hope in our family. Hope that a body will be here tomorrow to wear the folded garments. After reading this quote, I see laundry for my family is a privilege, not a burden. I may still not enjoy it, but I will see the good in it.
Finally... hope.