Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Comfort food!







We got our first frost, last night. I could see out our bedroom window, this morning, that, up on the hill, the normally yellow hay that was tethered yesterday and is waiting to be bailed today, was white with it. Actually, since the beginning of September, even while we were enjoying the last fruits of the harvest, my fingers and toes have been unrelentingly cold. It was wonderful that, last night, we also had our first fire of the season. I toasted myself and then skipped upstairs and got under the pile of quilts as quickly as I could!

Don't you just love how homey and comfortingly cozy this time of year is?!!! =]

This season calls for comfort food!

Like herbed apricot pork loin roast! =]

I love this recipe because it is made in the slow cooker. The slow cooker always makes me feel as if someone else is cooking for me! and this recipe is so delicious that I can even serve it when we have company, which leaves me the space I need to get so much else done in the meantime.




The recipe is from a score of a find - a Better Homes and Gardens special publication from a few years back -if you can believe it! Homey, indeed! Here is the recipe: herbed apricot pork loin roast




xo


Thursday, September 20, 2012

Hey, hey dragonfly....




"Come a little closer, dragonfly
Settle down with me a little while
I'm turning off the phone and enterprise
I could use your company, all right

Come a little closer, dragonfly
Little sapphire slipping through the sky
Between the skaters and the fishing lines
My, my, my dragonfly

Hey, hey dragonfly
I'd like to stare into your big bug eyes
Get a closer look at your fine wings
Think about some fleeting, pretty things
Hey, hey, hey dragonfly
Hey, hey, hey dragonfly

Come a little closer, dragonfly
I love the quiet air you occupy
I'm sitting down right here, right now, alone
To hear the river lapping at the stone

Hey, hey, dragonfly
I'd like to ride with you tonight
Take in your show, take up your life
Dragonfly, I really like your style"

~"Dragonfly" by Fernando Ortega

This was one of my boys' favorite songs when they were little. =]

I've been humming it, just lately, because I've had a rough couple of weeks getting my images ready to sell, this autumn. This 'enterprise' has really been an intense uphill toil. Over and over again, I've felt like I've needed to, somehow, pull knowledge and resources out of thin air. I've wished for a magic hat more than once! But, then, the orders for mats and prints and business cards were in - and a general business plan was made - photos were carefully tweaked and ready for printing - and the fog cleared and I see how much I've learned - how much I've done. The view is grand!!! =]

Oh, I'm so happy! There were several times that I had the desire to just stop trying and a few moments of frustrated tears (I'd seem so close and, then, more walls to scale would suddenly loom up) but, then, I couldn't help but just persevere - it's something that I really want to do - and the effort spent was worth it!!!

"Nothing ventured, nothing gained!"

and, by the way....

thank you, Ed - wherever/whoever you are - the helpful man at the other end of the phone line with SO much knowledge and experience - so calmly and CLEARLY explained! (Why was everyone keeping it a secret? or.... did they not know....) You'll very most likely never see this but you've made me appreciate, once again, that the kindness of a mellow stranger is a beautiful thing!

 Anyway. =]

These are images taken over the summer. The dragonflies are still around, though, and it was restorative to go out into the garden, yesterday, and to just settle down and spend some quality time sitting in the flowers with the buggies.... and, my camera!

(you know, you can see more detail by just clicking on the image... =])

 ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


It's a bug eat bug world but (thank goodness) I'm not a bug!!!



Damselflies have beards - 'who knew'? ;-)

(Must be Larry the Cucumber's 'Aunt Ruth'!  heh, heh. ahem ....er.... sorry! another obscure reference from my boys' early years - Veggie Tales! =])








xo




Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Love



Love is patient.... it doesn't give up so easily.

Love is kind and it cares about others - not only self.

It isn't jealous or envious which means that it doesn't get caught up in comparing oneself to others and thinking about what others have and don't have.

Love doesn't strut and doesn't have a swelled head - it's just not boastful or proud and it doesn't need to put oneself above another.

Love isn't self seeking. It doesn't force itself on others and isn't always "me first".

It doesn't fly off the handle because it isn't easily angered.

It doesn't keep score of the sins of others and it wouldn't think of keeping a record book of another's wrongs - perceived or real.

Love doesn't revel when others grovel and it isn't, actually, delighted when hard and tough times come to others...

But, it takes pleasure in the flowering of truth in another's life - in their heart and mind - it REJOICES when it sees it in others, in fact.

It puts up with anything, trusts the other to God always, and always looks for the best. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres...

it never looks back, but keeps going to the end.


Real Love never dies - that would be silly. If it's real, it can't!


Oh, and, by the way, this kind of love - it really isn't blind, either - even though it tends to always expect the best of the other.




Because of all this, it's, also, quietly confident - even when others may perceive it as weakness.

Oh, and the word completely freaks some people out - don't get that part, at all! =/

=]


xo



Monday, September 10, 2012

Like a spoonful of sugar....




I love to bake - to cook - to entertain - to offer hospitality....

but it sort of got lost when we moved four years ago. We've been so busy fixing up the house and just doing 'whatever', it seems. Somehow, this summer, I've had the chance to slow down and rediscover this part of me. I love the space and time spent putting everything together in a recipe and I LOVE giving this kind of 'gift' to my boys or inviting someone over for dinner - tea - dessert - and a good visit! Even if it's just surprising my sons with some blueberry coffee cake and mugs of tea when they get home from school and sitting around the kitchen table together - it seems to make life slow down and everything seems so much better. I mean, does anyone know what I'm talking about?!

But what has really 'taken the cake' this summer is this peach tart!!! The peaches have been absolutely perfect, this season, and with the dashes of mace, nutmeg and ginger in the smooth custard - it's heaven! =]








xo


Wednesday, September 05, 2012

quiet





"We seem so frightened today of being alone that we never let it happen. Even if family, friends and movies should fail, there is still the radio or television [or computer ;-) ] to fill up the void. Women, who used to complain of loneliness, need never be alone any more. We can do our housework with soap-opera heroes at our side. Even day-dreaming was more creative than this; it demanded something of oneself and it fed the inner life. Now, instead of planting our solitude with our own dream blossoms, we choke the space with continuous music, chatter and companionship to which we do not even listen. It is simply there to fill the vacuum. When the noise stops there is no inner music to take its place. We must re-learn to be alone.

...I find there is a quality to being alone that is incredibly precious. Life rushes back into the void, richer, more vivid, fuller than before."

~ Anne Morrow Lindbergh from "Gift from the Sea".






These thoughts have been filling me up with such a still joy, lately, and it seems to me that I should just whisper them and, then, turn the comments off because...

Shhhhhhh.....! =]

It's a quiet day







xo