May 27, 2014

Box On the Doorstep

Our days at the hospice house continue.  When we stumbled home with exhaustion late last night we found a special box on our doorstep from some dear friends.  Kleenex, mandarin oranges, tea, cookies, Chapstick, hand sanitizer, applesauce, toasted pecans, granola bars, napkins, a small notepad and pen, and a card.  All put together in a wrapped box to take with us.

The pic is blurry from my cell phone, but it most closely resembles what I saw through my tears.

May 23, 2014

Blogs are funny things.  So full of beauty, color, fun, deep thoughts, and even thanks, and yet life in the real world keeps on. In an effort to be genuine and not just fill this space with fluff, I will share that the coming days will be difficult for us.  We are watching a dear loved one slip closer and closer to the end.

If she could, she would smile at the lovely wild roses and she would want us to as well.  For this moment, her wish is granted.




May 21, 2014

Girl Time

We did plenty of this in the evenings...


Good for the soul, no?  =)

May 20, 2014

Haystack Rock

It was a perfectly lovely weekend at Cannon Beach.  It was so sunny that I actually saw a bathing suit and plenty of people braving the frigid waters.  Haystack Rock is still as impressive as ever.

Too much food, gorgeous weather, two bakeries, walks on the beach, great laughs, fresh air, no sleep, and some good lessons on happiness vs. joy.  It was another good reminder that happiness is dependent on circumstances and things, whereas joy is much deeper and has nothing to do with what is happening around us.

Women's retreats don't get any better.  =)




May 16, 2014

Wild Irises

I spied the wild irises in the woods last week!!  All by myself!  I felt like a little kid, ready to jump up and down.  Sir Bradley has trained me to keep an eye out for them - they come with friends (not alone), are in the woods or even on the edges of nature along roadways, and are timed to come out with other wildflowers in the spring.  Delicate and shy, they are easy to overlook.

And with that, my friends, I wish you a wonderful Friday!  Keep your eyes open for glimpses of beauty.  =)


May 15, 2014

The Blue Goat

It was an adventure, starting at a little restaurant in the town of Amity in the middle of nowhere.  The Blue Goat provided wonderful food and service!



The old school chairs officially made it a field trip.  =)


May 14, 2014

Raclettes

A good friend was to join us for dinner...but it was to be a work night for me, and all I could contribute was homemade applesauce from the freezer.  She didn't care, and she even offered to bring everything! Holy cow, who am I to argue with such a fabulous idea??!

I thought she might bring chicken and potatoes.  Or a casserole.

Raclettes.  She brought her raclette contraption from Europe, and dinner suddenly became an event.

As someone who has read just about every baking catalog on the face of the planet, I was shocked.  I had never even remotely heard of this!  Sir Bradley furrowed his eyebrows at having to pull the dryer out to plug the thing in, and even suggested that we use another pan.  Silly - he didn't know we were about to have raclettes.  And so the deed was done, and the long extension cord wound it's way through the laundry room, across the kitchen, and into the dining room.

These are actually grills, with a griddle on top and an element underneath for broiling.  Everyone has their own raclette pan to assemble little bites of meat and vegies, then top it off with raclette cheese.

Seriously?  Racelette cheese?  How could I have never seen it?

The browned and slightly crispy cheese made everything so delicious!  But I'm convinced that the intrigue and the social nature of the dinner made it even better.  The Swiss have figured it out.  Then again, I think my very American friend has it down as well.  =)



May 11, 2014

Mother's Day

Happy Mother's Day, Mom!  Thanks for being your wonderful self.  
You are very loved!


May 8, 2014

Nobility

The Duchess certainly made a name for herself.

I, for one, think that it would be GREAT to be a part of the whole nobility thing. Come to think of it, I'm married to Sir Bradley, so I believe that makes me a Lady - to be addressed as Your Ladyship. It does have a nice ring to it, no?!  Especially when accompanied by plenty of household servants to do my washing, cleaning, and cooking.  And to look after my comforts.

Princess or Queen would have definite advantages, but I'll settle for this.


The Duchess of Bedford
Photo by Wikipedia

May 7, 2014

Cream Tea

Afternoon Tea, High Tea, and Cream Tea.  Oh, so confusing to us Americans.  At some point in my life I am going to fly to England and visit all of the china shops, meander around small villages, and visit every tea house I can find.  I'll figure it all out and maybe write a book about it. =)

In the meantime, I'll keep reading...

High Tea provides some sustenance, intended for workers who come home famished and cannot wait until a late dinner to eat.  It is intended to be enjoyed by those in the middle or lower classes.  (No matter the class, I do believe buns, pasties, cheese and onion pies, muffins, and crumpets sound exceptionally splendid.) 

Afternoon Tea appears to be a more dainty event, popularized by the 7th Duchess of Bedford as a way fill the gap between lunch and dinner.

Cream Tea is another variation of the Afternoon Tea.  Also quite proper and civilized, it offers a limited menu of tea, scones, jam, and clotted cream.  Those in Cornwall and Devon continue to disagree on the correct assembly of the clotted cream.  Does the jam top the cream which tops the scone? Or is it cream, jam, scone?


May 6, 2014

Rhubarb Stains on the Breadboard

In the past, this would have bothered me.

Now I smile at the memory of cutting fresh rhubarb from the garden and eating the most delicious rhubarb-berry crisp on the face of the planet.  With friends.

=)



May 5, 2014

Pomp and Circumstance



It was a fine commencement ceremony.  The orchestra, the organ music, the concert choir dressed in formal black attire, the regalia, the energy of the graduates, the mix of joy and quiet tears of those sitting in the bleachers, and the words of wisdom made for an affair not to be forgotten.

The speaker was one of those filled with understanding and deep thoughts, with a bit of craziness to counteract the serious.  He told the graduates that some will be successful and do great things. Some will face difficult times and heartbreak. But the majority will likely live ordinary lives. Yet in such a resplendent way, he encouraged those young adults to look for the sacred in the small, ordinary things of life.  The moments faced every single day can be full of meaning; regular lives can hold great significance.

Beautiful.

May 2, 2014

Running in the Woods

Sir Bradley and Miss Elsie took me up into the woods to see a whole new area that has opened up. For years it was impassible with blackberry bushes, but now that the trees have grown tall there is more shade and many of them have died back.

Miss Elsie, of course, was on the alert for new smells and things of interest...

...and anything that moved. Chasing rabbits and deer and just plain goofing off is just about the funnest thing in the world for this girl!

May 1, 2014

May Day

Happy May Day, my friends! Enjoy these lovelies with your eyes only, unless you don't mind the oniony smell of chives.  =)

I still can't resist bringing in a bunch for the table centerpiece.  Smell or no smell.