January 30, 2015

February Challenge

It's time to share the wealth of old-fashioned face time friendship, and I'm not talking about phones! With the advent of texting, the conversational skills necessary for talking and interacting in person are quickly fading...not just with kids and teens, but adults as well.  Start paying attention and you will be remarkably surprised at how many people are either too stressed, uncomfortable, or too distracted to reach out to others in person, even in the smallest way.  When's the last time someone genuinely looked you in the eye and asked, "How is everything?"

So here is my own February Challenge to sharpen my skills and keep me focused, but I invite you to join with me! Reach out to one person every day until Valentine's. Specific ideas on what to say or do are listed below.  They are extremely simple, but they are far from simple-minded.  Rather than save everything up for Valentine's Day, why not make a real difference, now?!

Ask
*How are you?
*How is your family?
*How is your spouse/daughter/son/aunt/etc?
*Is work going well?
*How is life treating you?

Listen
Find out what is going well, and cheer.  Find out what's not going so well and offer an ear or a shoulder.

Treat
Tea?  Cookie?  A little jar of granola?  How about a handmade Valentine?  Find a small way just to show you care.  No presents, no expenses, just tokens of thought.


January 28, 2015

A Quieter Storm

The snowstorm in Brooklyn fell short of expectations!  But it did bring a day of play for my boy. And perhaps a birthday package (complete with a fabulous cranberry rum cake) will make it there by tomorrow after all.  =)


January 26, 2015

High Tea & Friends

What a delightful afternoon of tea with friends! Not only that, but the owner offered to talk to me again - any time - about my dream of opening my own shop someday.  "There can never be too many tea houses!" she exclaimed.

It would a cheery place full of bone china teacups, heart sandwiches, sunlight, and laughter.

My first order of business should be traveling far and wide to see what the world already offers and then start creating.  Admittedly this would be the best part.  I'm not sure I actually want to serve tea every day...I'm more into the travel, planning, and creative parts, so clearly, I have to work on a viable business plan.  =)


January 23, 2015

Simple Jars

It was time to transfer a load of canning jars from the pantry back out to the garage.

And it became one of those brief moments when I happened to see the lights and shimmers...so common, but generally too busy to see...an old-fashioned stop-and-smell-the-roses moment!

January 19, 2015

Window Pictures

The fog, the setting sun, the mystery...made a little more exciting by hanging out a window to capture the best view...


January 16, 2015

Simply Wonderful

How a young mother of three boys manages to find time to make something this sweet is beyond me! Love it!


January 15, 2015

New Hunting Grounds

It seems Sir Bradley has found a new place to hunt.  He saw the water and flocks of things just over the bluff.  I thought that thistle was kinda cool.

Hmmm... having him gone on hunting and gathering pursuits is definitely not my preference, but it's part of what makes him who he is and thus becomes part of the whole extraordinary living thing.  I'm sure of it.  =)


January 12, 2015

Falcon Cove

It was a delightful few days at the beach.  Good for the soul.


January 9, 2015

He's Only Three

He brought a gift, just for me.  And he thought of it himself.

"Excuse me, Nancy, this is for you."

Love that boy.

January 6, 2015

Chinese Gardens

It was a short, but sweet adventure to the Chinese Gardens.  What captured my interest was the attention to detail, from the smallest inlaid rocks to the fragrant trees to the incredible art work being created before our eyes.  It was breathtaking. The artist was deep in silent concentration, making magical dragons and chickens and forming them into letters and posters for the children.

January 5, 2015

Tapioca

Tapioca pudding...

We decided it would be a nice change from birthday cake on top of all the Christmas sweets we indulged in.

It was especially nice with fresh blueberries and strawberries on top.  But how good was it really?  I couldn't get a picture fast enough... :)



Tapioca Pudding
1/3 c. tapioca, small pearls
2-1/2 c. milk (dairy or coconut)
1 egg yolk
1/4 c. honey (less than most recipes call for, but plenty sweet enough)
1/4 tsp. sea salt, heaping
1/2 tsp. vanilla
Unsweetened coconut flakes
Fresh fruit

Let tapioca sit in milk x 30 mins.  Then whisk in egg yolk, honey, and salt.  Bring to a boil on medium heat, stirring gently.  Reduce heat until barely bubbling, and stir for another 15 mins until thickened. Remove from heat. Add vanilla.  Pour into bowl(s), cool 2-3 hrs or overnight.

Toast coconut flakes @350° x 5 mins in glass pan. (Watch it closely or be ready for a burnt offering!)

Serve with fresh fruit and top with coconut.