Friday, November 28, 2008

testing cakes

Tell me the truth. . . .
if you were responsible to guide ones taste buds to love chocolate forever. . .
would you take the task lightly?
I thought not.
This week, I have been busy perusing my best loved chocolate cake recipes for the cake that I'll be baking tomorrow.
This tender crumbed and soft as a cloud cake. . .just might be the one.
It is a bit tempting to give her a crash course with my favorite dense chocolate cake. . .
I'll let you know on Monday. . .
Oh. . I do hope my decorating skills are in top form tomorrow. .
I seem to have good days and well. . .less than pastry chef perfection on other days. . .
Have a wonderful day my friends. . . run on over to Mennonite Girls Can Cook if you are thinking of making a Chocolate Chiffon Cake that is powder puff light.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

With Thanksgiving

Anna. . . .is sitting pretty with her card signed .. . ready to go to the party.
Baby girls turn one everyday. . . . but when a grandgirlie turns one. . . .
the world is a wee bit brighter for this grammie.
While our neighbors to the south celebrate Thanksgiving. . .
we too are very thankful. . . .so we are celebrating with you.
Happy Thanksgiving Day . . . .

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

sunset by God

A ditch of dirty water .. . and some scruffy raspberry canes . . ..

A mass of branches in desparate need of pruning. . .

An old treefort that has long since ceased being the source of boys private hideout . . .

generally speaking not attractive, until God sweeps across it all with his paint brush.

I like to think that even though I am at times completely unpretty from within. . .

God can make all things beautiful.

Have a wonderful day my friends . . .

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

the washline is dripping

Here on the wet coast of Canada. . . .we often have no choice but to dry our clothing indoors. Our bungalow. . .could of course have lines strung across the kitchen like my mom used to do when I was little. . .but I'm not quite there yet. . .(though I have great admiration for those who do)

I decided to try these (wondering why there is no pointing up arrow on my key board). They eliminate the use of dryer sheets or fabric softener. I like them. I have four of them rumbling around in my dryer. . .perhaps I should have six. For my cottons, they are perfect, no static at all. For my delicates. . . (imagine here a picture of delicates clinging to my hair. . .for use of entertaining the grands).

Have a wonderful day my friends, we're off to purchase a few Christmas lights. . .(I think). We debated this one back and forth. In the end, we have decided to string a few lights on the bushes and the back porch. From the road, it will be dullsville. . . but our friends will be welcomed at the back door. . . we live in the country.

Monday, November 24, 2008

big boys and little boys

Little boys . . ..

Big Boys . . ..

they still hog the toys. . .

The only thing that has changed is who the parents are . . .

and who the grandparents are . . .

It struck me funny as I looked at the top photo from our archives,

at how quickly my role to small children has changed.

OH and the top picture is the basement of our first house probably in 1983 or so. . .

Macrame hangers, fake wood panelling, faux crushed avocado drapes, and slip covers that have foam attached to the back so they don't slip around .. .

My mom on the left of the couch, Terry's mom on the right hand side. . .me in the denim jumper and our dads chatting away.

Those were very good times.

Have a wonderful day my friends.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Drum Roll Please

Our extended family has had a big growth spurt in numbers this past week. My little great niece Shaye is a big sister.

My niece Tammy and her husband Quinn have twins. Our family is rejoicing with them on the safe arrival of these little ones. Born at 38 weeks they went home from the hospital as soon as Mommy was ready.

Kayde Hugh, the little boy weighs 7 pounds 3 ounces and

Breanna Renee the little girl weighs 6 pounds.

It will still be a little while before I can snuggle them close . ..

but we'll be playing We'll be Home for Christmas very soon.

Children are always a blessing. Every child is special.
These two wee ones are no exception .. . .already loved so much by Mommy and Daddy and big sister. . .Grandma's and Grandpa's, Aunties and Uncles and cousins. . . galore.
Welcome to the family Kayde and Breanna. . . we all can't wait to meet you.
Have a wonderful day my friends, I'm off to have my roots examined. . . .

Thursday, November 20, 2008

no lashes Lovella

Upon careful inspection of my baby boys, I was delighted to see that they were not lash challenged upon their birth. Both of the boys take after their Dad .. . and now. . .upon careful inspection of the grands .. . phew. . again, my genes were overlooked in the eye lash department.

Adding 49.75 years to the mix, eyelashes are thinning to conserve body energy and I suspect are even been transported to other apparently lacking areas . . . enough said.

Over the years, I have carefully done my research in magazines and have purchased enough lousy mascara to last a lifetime. The other day, I was walking past the make up counter and this NEW mascara called me over. As is my custom, I purchased the new product and took it home for a go.
I think me and my new mascara will be friends. No eye liner, no eye shadow. . .just my mascara and my sparse little lashes. . .going out on the town. . .woo hoo. .. .for breakfast. .
What is the one piece of makeup you would rather live without.
Have a wonderful day my friends .. . .

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Less Words Wednesday

Living on the Pacific Coast of Canada we might often experience the drizzle of a rain forest. .. .

but. . . .hey if the big old Maple tree can enjoy a bit of moss growing on it. . .why can't I?

The tree is all but unclothed . . . .

but the floor beneath it . .. has a carpet of gold. If you have never walked on crunchy leaves. . think frosted flakes.

Oh .. . do have a wonderful day my friends. . . we're off to get my Cholesterol results. . .woo hoo.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

could it be a morning like this?

A few mornings ago, I looked out the window and glimpsed the most magnificent sunrise. I nearly missed it, they happen so quick. I couldn't help but wonder if it had been even more spectacular moments before. I'll never know and I accept that this view of the sunrise was chosen for me by a God who delights in gifting me with occasional wow moments.
I was a bit tempted to doctor the photo a wee bit to enhance the glow, but I decided to give you what I captured. I stood there in awe of God. As we approach the Advent season my heart is conflicted with the joy of giving gifts with the scurrying about that is generally involved in finding the perfect gift. . .and the quietening of my heart in preparation to celebrate the birth of Jesus.
I watched the sun rise, and wondered what the day will look like when the baby Jesus that was born and is widely celebrated in one way or another. . .comes back to this earth.
If we believe that God exists, and we believe that the Bible is true, we also will believe that Jesus is who he said he is, a Saviour to all people.
My heart today is for the person who has never stopped to consider that Jesus Christ will return to the earth as the Bible says. . . .
No one knows when Jesus will return to earth. What we know for sure. . ..according to His word that when he does come we will be surprised.
Jesus himself said. . . "take note: I will come as unexpectedly as a thief! Blessed are all who are watching for me . . .." Revelations 16 : 15
There is no sitting on the fence. It is not enough to believe there is a God, many of course believe there is a God. Either you believe that Jesus was telling the truth about who He said He is. . . .or you don't. If you believe Him you will also believe as I do that He is the only way to be with God in Heaven after we die.
Ask yourself this. . .
Am I excited that Jesus will return? . . .as the Bible says He will.
My heart breaks for those who cannot say yes.
I know that there are many who will say a resounding hearty Amen to this post. . .and together we rejoice.
There might be just one person today who reads this and worries that I may be right about what I believe is true. . .and wonders . . .why can't I have peace like that . . . .why can't I just believe . . .
Pour your heart out to Jesus and ask Him to forgive you .. . .as I have done. Tell Him that you want Him to be Lord of your life. . .that you can't do it on your own. This could be the best Christmas ever for you . .. .because you will have accepted the gift that God sent you!
I am not a perfect person by any stretch of the imagination but I am forgiven. . .and I have hope for my future. I believe in Heaven, and I believe that I will be there . ..
God sent His Son to be our Saviour . . .
Oh. . ..I can't wait for Christmas . .
and every Sunrise that will remind me that He will come again.
Have a wonderful day my friends. . .

Monday, November 17, 2008

No Kneading again

Warning .. . .if you need to lose a few pounds before the holidays begin, do not. . .I tell you .. .do not venture over to the Mennonite Girls Can Cook blog if you have a weakness for Cinnamon Rolls.
In fact, I would encourage you to press the back button right now and pretend you never saw the buns ready to go into the oven.
Have a wonderful day my friends. . . .
For those of you who have left for a walk scheduled your walk for later. . .
I have to tell you, I have a book that I highly recommend for Christmas gift giving.
After baking countless No Knead Artisan Loaves of Bread and the starting to make the Multigrain bread that you can find on my sidebar. . .I thought there must be some wonderful Cinnamon Roll dough that is out there to try.
I whipped up this recipe for No Knead Cinnamon Rolls on Thursday and after letting it lounge in the refrigerator for the recommended length of time, I baked them up. Oh my, they are wonderful. I kept saying to my beloved, are these not the best Cinnamon Rolls you have ever had in your life? They are. Hands down.
Off for my walk. . .Have a wonderful day my friends.

Friday, November 14, 2008


Yesterday was nearly perfect. The sun was out. . .the breeze was blowing and though it was only 10 degrees Celsius, with the sun . . . and a few layers, the ripping out of the perennials began.
I remember before blogging and less picture taking. . .the yard work was completed much quicker. But hey, where's the fire?
The first leaf art arrangement was much more artistic. . .but my assistant thought it was very funny to blow it away . I had to hurry to lay these and click the camera. . .moments later, they were blown to the pile.
Do you ever notice how sense of humor differs from men to women?
Always teasing . . . .
Ah .. .the yard was eventually cleaned up. . .and had ourselves a cup of coffee.
We'll be cleaning up leaves for awhile. . . but I don't mind one bit ..
let's not rush the season .
Have a wonderful weekend my friends . . .

Thursday, November 13, 2008

coping with the beauty of autumn

It's the craziest thing. . . at night when we are snug as bugs sleeping wide awake. . . under our down quilt and flannelet sheets with the window open. . .the wind is blowing and I can hear the leaves scraping the sidewalk. I anticipate the morning when I can crunch leaves and clean up assist the gardener with the daily raking.
In the morning .. .it is raining and the leaves are like Frosted Flakes that have been soaking while you poured coffee.
This was the tree in the front yard yesterday. . .and tomorrow I'll show you what the system passing through did to it.
Now, we are awaiting the wind to come through and blow the remains to the neighbors. . .
Hey Ravi. . .you best hope for a North Eastern. . .
Have a great day my friends.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Sending you Packin'

I don't mind Christmas decorating in the stores already. It surely does beat the decor that celebrated the 31st of last month. When I have gifts that need to be sent early, the early decor reminds me to get busy.

This year the grands planned to pack their own shoe boxes we decided to pack up boxes for the grands .. . from our house.

As tempting as it was to pack up boxes for wee ones the same age as our grands, we packed up boxes for big boys who are the least likely to receive a box. Done deal. We dropped the Christmas Shoe Boxes off at church this weekend and the last I saw of them, they were on a cart heading for a container to be shipped.
Oh . .. concerned I forgot to pack up the black lollipops?
Even the best intentions sometimes go a bit awry,
we like those black lollipops. . .
You still have time to pack up a shoebox to send overseas . . ..
Have a wonderful day my friends.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


The eleventh month . . .
The eleventh day . . .
The eleventh hour . . .
I will stop and reflect on those that paid the highest price.
On this day in 1918 the first world war ended.
It was the year my Dad was born . . .
I wonder how his mother felt, giving birth to her youngest child in a time of such unrest.
Ninety years have passed since that day when for a short while, the world had enough of war.
Today, mothers are giving birth in places where gunfire is heard . . .
They are not much different from my grandmother. . .
I am so thankful to live in a country where I can worship freely.
I am free to speak honestly without fear of being silenced.
For all those that fought so that I could have this freedom. . .
I thank you. . .and remember you today.
And I will pray for peace in this hurting world.

Monday, November 10, 2008

fresh frosting

Last week one day before the downpours began, I moseyed on back to the neighbors blueberry field behind our property. The blueberry plants are the brightest crimson now and will soon lose their leaves. The black hoses hang above them, dreaming of the hot summer months. . .way ahead when their leaking abilities onto the blueberry plants will be appreciated once again.

The snow had fallen fresh the day before .. .

not where we live, but through my zoom lens I could see it well.

I tell you one thing, if that volcanic mountain ever lets go .. . you'll be on my short list. . to know.

I wish that blogger had an extra large option for photos like wordpress does.

It doesn't. You can however click on the photo above to enlarge it if you wish.

Wouldn't you love your front window to be facing this?

I shan't complain, as my beloved often says. . .the walk will do you good.

Have a wonderful day my friends, I'm off for my walk.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Special Edition

I don't normally post on Saturdays since even bloggers have to do their Saturday Cleaning and laundry. I'm posting a Special Edition today. I considered posting it tomorrow and calling it "The Lord God made them all" but I thought you would consider me jesting.

Then I thought I could call this, reasons to keep your toilet clean .. .you never know when you will need to take a picture of your toilet bowl as a blogger.

We have had a LOT of rain. It has rained three days and three nights and things that normally swim down stream are swimming upstream to search for dry land. I was preparing to get ready to go over to friends for dinner late afternoon yesterday. I turned the light on in the bathroom and jumped two feet vertically.

Now, I've raised little boys and I'm completely prepared to find the kind of pets that little boys consider keepers but I didn't see the lil' farm hand pocket this little guy, so I couldn't blame him.

I called my beloved who was working in the shop, and told him to come quickly. He peered at the salamander, claimed innocence and flushed. Upon the swirling of the toilet, the salamander began to swim vigorously, not completely willing to go whence he cometh.

There you go, a Saturday post .. .I'm off to strip the bed and .. . clean toilets.

Have a good day my friends, see you on Monday.

Friday, November 7, 2008

what to do on a dark rainy afternoon

Put on your rain jacket .. .

watch where the water runs down. . .

and go help in the shop . . .
Have a wonderful day my friends.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

why do barns age gracefully .. .so well?

Yesterday, I drove past this old barn and stopped to take some pictures.
I wonder why I appreciate the character and strength that this barn represents. . .
It sits abandoned in a field of grass, left to enjoy it's last years .. .
Other than a new roof it appears to be left to age gracefully. . .
and indeed I think it is beautiful.
When I look closely at my face. . . .
I look for signs of "beautiful" aging and yet the world has been successful in telling me otherwise.
I know in my heart it is wrong to buy into the commercial standard of beauty that says youth equals beauty. .. .why do I have such a hard time believing my heart?
More on this another time. .
This photo is almost a four season photo.
The green grass of summer .. .
the golden leaves of autumn. . .
and the fresh snow of winter.
I must say. . . .
I was mighty tempted to hold a tulip to be seen close up. . .to make it four seasons.
Oh ....fantastic news. . .a rain warning is in effect .. .
windy and wet. . how fun.
I think I'll have the grands over. . . it isn't too soon to pass on my love for weather watching.
Have a wonderful day my friends. .

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

same scene. . . different act

The view out my front window in the morning. . .

. . .and in the afternoon.

I am hard pressed to say which was more beautiful.

Have a wonderful day my friends.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

can you see me now?

You know what I just love? People who "get" me. There are people in our lives who are so easy to love because they understand our heart and enjoy who we are. . spite of our quirks.

The other day, we got an email from our friends Rob and Monica with these pictures attached. They were hovering above us. . ."unbeknownst" to us and snapped a photo of the bungalow and "then some". They knew full well that my blogging instincts would be pulsing with enthusiasm.

It is a bit sad, that you can't see me with my grands. . . romping in the field. .. but hey there is always next time. The photo is quite recent. . .you can see the beautiful colored tree that I posted recently. . .from our back forty. In the front right, is our bungalow. . .true to my word. . it is "just right. . .for the two of us". You can see where the chickens live. . .and play and work. OH. . .and there is the shop on the left. . .where my beloved spends time working on his old Merc.

Here is the trusty photographer and crew woman. . Monica. .
Thanks for the tour of the farm.
Next time. . .plop yourselves down. . . I have butterhorns in the oven.
Have yourself a wonderful day my friends.

Monday, November 3, 2008

a bit of dirty laundry for you

Every now and then, it is suggested that my portrayal of life on the farm here in Beautiful British Columbia is perhaps a little too idyllic. I must admit that I'm not one to air our dirty laundry and it must be a wee bit tempting to wonder what our life is like. . if you could be a peeping tom.

I imagine you all to be at one end of this long tunnel peering at me and mine squinting to get a glimpse of our reality. You've all been warned. . .dirty laundry in this post.

When we moved to the farm back in 1994 my beloved continued his full time work at Safeway while he learned how to be a farmer. I worked in the barns in the morning gathering eggs, and our two boys aged 13 and 15 gathered eggs in the afternoon and on weekends. This resulted in many loads of dirty chore clothes.

My beloved would check the chickens before he went to work and then again after work and often spent his evenings doing repairs and general cleaning. His chore clothes were far dustier and dirtier than mine and the boys and so he decided all on his own, that he would throw his dirty laundry in the washing machine himself so that the clothes wouldn't a) be strewn on the laundry room floor and b) no one else would need to touch them. He would begin the laundry by putting his load into the washer, adding the detergent and starting the cycle and I would then move it to the dryer and do the folding and putting away.

I pointed out to him several times that his socks didn't wash properly because his method of removing them left them bunched. I would usually take them out of the wash, and throw them in with another load for their second proper wash. This is how we have been doing it here in the bungalow ever since. It never really dawned on me that this should or could be addressed again. After all, everyone that knows me already suggests that my work load is less than strenuous and couldn't I at the very least. . . do my husbands laundry without complaining.

On Friday my daughter by love who shall remain unnamed to protect the innocent in this story. . though I will hint that her name starts with a B and ends with "ah", was doing some chicken laundry of her own. It seems that one little rogue chick was loose on the farmyard and got his feathers in a bit of a muck. Being the good little mother hen that she is. . stripped him down to his skivvies and popped his feathers in the wash. When she went to put the feathers in the dryer, she noted that were was a load of chore clothes that needed folding. Again, being the peach she is. . .proceeded to do this. In the meantime, I was busy in the office "working". Out of the corner of my eye, I saw a flash of my dbl taking the normal 10 paces from one end of the hallway to the other end in 4 leaps or less . . . where my beloved was reclining on the couch.
All I heard was. . . ."are these you socks?".. .
He said. . "yes"
She said. . ."does something look wrong with them?"
He said. . ."why do you ask?"
She said. . "can they wash properly if they are all bunched up like this?"
He said. . ."who wants to know?"
As she moseyed back down the hallway. . . I noted the smile on her face.
On Saturday, after the barns received their weekend treat to be blown free of cobwebs, my beloved in his typical manner, came into the laundry room with his arm loaded full of dusty clothes, put them in the washing machine and called me to come and see.
Is that not just precious? He said he didn't know. . .and I can nearly be certain that there will never be another bunched up sock at the end of the wash cycle again.

Is there a lesson in today's airing of the dirty laundry?
I'm not sure. I do know though that when that dbl of ours flashes her beautiful smile at us. . .
we purpose to please her.
If that is not the best kind of teacher. . . .I don't know.
Have a wonderful day my friends . . .