Translate

Tuesday, October 19, 2021

a serious post...



This is a serious post. I don't often do serious and may not even publish this. But it's preying on my mind and writing it down is the only way I know of getting it out of my head. We are at the age now (in our mid 70's) where losing friends and relatives is becoming a more common occurrence. 

DH and I have already lost our parents. I've lost both my siblings. And now we're beginning to lose friends. I lost a dear friend several years ago (I still miss our talks and weekly get-togethers). And DH lost a good friend and work associate last year. 

Now another dear friend is in the process of losing her husband. She and I talk late at night and she is doing her best to handle the situation, but I feel so helpless. How does one come to grips with things like this? I mean, apparently we do. We have to. Life goes on (but it can never be the same). 

They say 'Time' is the answer. Give it time. Huh? How much time does it take? And how much time do we have? 

When I think about it, dying isn't as scary for those who die (although that's extremely subjective and an individual case prospective) as it is for those left behind (IMO).

I try to talk to my kids about this on occasion. Trying to let them realize that their parents' eventual death is a certainty.  And they know this of course, but don't want to talk about it. Maybe they're right. What good is it to talk about something that hasn't happened yet? They will deal with it when the time comes.

I think that part of what worries me with this new death approaching, is that as awful as it is for him, I'm afraid that his passing will be too much for her and I will lose her also... if not now, then in the near future.  And I don't want this to happen.  Selfish, I know.

Now I also know many women and men who have lost their spouses. They carry on. It isn't easy, but they apparently find a way. So I know it's do-able. Guess it coming so close to home (and yet not home thank goodness) is getting to me... 

As I said before, I don't like to talk about things that are too personal, and don't expose my feelings about a lot to many, but I know that the few of you that read my posts are close to the same age and are  probably experiencing the same things. How do you deal with it? Or is it just a matter of 'accepting it and moving on' - not easy to do.

And something else... I think as I age, I'm becoming more sensitive, more sentimental, more compassionate...  and although I'm aware that this isn't a bad thing, it makes one 'tear up' way too easily  (I mean I was taught 'stiff upper lip and all that'...).

Well, I've decided to post this... probably TMI as they say these days. But at least I wrote it down and got it out of my system.


Thanks for being there...

Hugs (virtual),

Rian




Sunday, October 17, 2021

just pics... and a few posters


See the lizard sunning himself in front ?


My son sent me this pic a while back when they were living on Oahu. He built the little sailboat and apparently
 the lizard decided to Captain it...

And DH's brother sent us this one recently when their 

Night Blooming Cereus bloomed 




This is just a close up of one bloom,  but he actually had a total of 38 blooms over 3 nights 

These flowers are gorgeous and have the

most heavenly scent


granddaughter getting her next belt...


This is our youngest granddaughter 
getting the next belt 
in Tai quan dao



*****************************


Next are just a few posters that I like:




 



...and 

I'm going to close with this poster

 (as I wonder this myself

 every time I see the feral cats

 watching me)





As always, thanks for visiting.  I really appreciate your taking the time to check out what I have to say (even when it isn't much). 

  Most of us have so much going on in our lives

 (and in those close to us)

 that we don't share... 


Why? 

Don't know... 

too personal? Too scary?

Maybe sharing it would make it real?

whatever...


But I appreciate being able to share 

what I feel comfortable sharing.


Hugs (virtual),

Rian

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

scalloped potatoes, home-made bread, and the power of choice...


Cheeky Chick on kitchen cup

Making individual scalloped potatoes! I saw this recipe somewhere... can't remember where... but thought I'd give it a try. It's pretty simple, basic, and good! And since our grandson loves potatoes (almost any kind), I thought this would be a possible new addition to our normal everyday menu (which has gotten a bit boring over these last 2 years). Besides, I had 2 baking potatoes in the pantry that would be growing eyes if I didn't do something with them soon.

And I have to say that it went over well. The first time I made it, I didn't have any heavy cream, so I just used evaporated milk (which we always have for both my tea and the feral cats' cream). This second time I did use the heavy cream - both were good!

Here is a picture: (minus the one I ate as a sample check)




And here is the recipe: (easy peasy)

Ingredients:

Unsalted butter (for ramekins)

1 1/4 cups shredded cheddar cheese (I use triple cheddar)

1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

1 Tbsp finely chopped chives (I use onion)

1/4 tsp AP flour

1 1/4 lbs potatoes (sliced thin)

kosher salt and fresh ground pepper (1/4 tsp each unless you like more salt)

1 cup heavy cream (can use evaporated milk)

Directions:

Butter ramekins well

Preheat oven to 350 

Combine cheddar, parmesan, chives, and flour

Add potatoes and mix well

Add salt and pepper

Then 

divide half the potatoes/cheese mix into the 6 ramekins,

pour half the heavy cream divided among the 6 ramekins

And repeat with a 2nd layer of potatoes and heavy cream


Put ramekins on baking sheet and cover with aluminum foil

Bake 45 mins at 350

Uncover and bake another 15 mins in 425 oven.

Run a knife around the edges before serving.


**************************

Also DH has a retired male friend that has taken to baking fresh home-made bread. He actually makes really good loafs of white bread... and has been bringing some over to us. It reminds me a little of eggbread. But  since we basically only eat bread slatered with unsalted butter  and heated in the Aga with our coffee/tea every morning, it works out well. 

Here is a picture of his recent gift:




Now it's not gluten free - so outside of tasting a tiny bit, I stick with my Canyon BakeHouse GF bagels and sliced bread (although I have cheated on occasion and had a bite of Central Market's pretzel bread - which we all love).

I'm not sure if gluten is a problem for me. But my niece who is a Pediatrician told me it wouldn't hurt to try going gluten free for a few months and see what I thought. So I have. It hasn't been that hard. The conclusion I've come to these last 6 months is inconclusive. I don't think I have an allergy to gluten... but I may have a sensitivity to too much of it. The reason I say this is because I can cheat on occasion with no bad results. But if I cheat too much, I have a problem.  It's a choice. 


*****************************


The more I think about it, everything we do in life is a choice. It may seem sometimes that we don't have a choice... but I think we always do. Here are a few sayings I've come across recently about 'choice'.







...and this last one is the kicker:





Thanks for visiting! (It was a good choice - I hope)

Hugs virtual,

Rian


Saturday, October 9, 2021

haircut! quilt, and tiny snake...


haircut Oct 2021


OK, I finally did it! It's been almost 2 years since I've had a haircut and it was getting pretty long.  I have to say that it was easy to pull back into a ponytail every day, but I'm not sure that is good for your hair. Anyway, I bit the bullet and had it all cut off Friday. And it was good to see the gal that cuts my hair. She lives in the Hill Country of Texas, so only comes in to take appointments one week each month. I was lucky to catch her in last week.


*************************

Also I finished my pandemic quilt and am almost finished my Hawaiian one. This is a picture of the Hawaiian one. Bought the fabric right after we returned from visiting our son in Oahu... but hadn't gotten around to putting it together until now. Almost finished quilting it... then there's just the binding left to do.







Had to show you the backing... as it took me a while to find backing that reminded me of the ocean. This is what I chose.

****************************

That's about all I have today. DH and I did take a walk around the neighborhood Saturday morning. It's been in the 60's early in the day lately... so we walk before the temp starts climbing. We did find a tiny young snake (about 6 inches long) on the sidewalk. DH thought he was dead... but apparently he was just 'sunning' himself as when I touched him, he started wiggling. I picked him up and put him in the grass so he wouldn't dry up in the sun (but I'm not sure he appreciated the gesture - as he was flipping his little tail like the cats used to do when they were angry). 


*****************************


(oh,.. update on flu shot :
didn't even feel the nurse give it... 
and no sore arm!)


******************************

Life (and the pandemic)



Don't know why I'm posting more than usual lately, but perhaps I'm making up for the days I didn't... or for the days to come when I might not.

Hope you're having a good weekend!

Hugs (virtual),
Rian



 




Wednesday, October 6, 2021

simple, but true... or funny


a great truth in my book

 

This is one of the first quotes I came across 

when checking out Robert Brault from Arkansas Patti's blog... 

and I thought,

 "Wow! now that's appropriate for the times!" 

Today when no one seems to know what is true anymore...  

 we should at least know

 what is kind



... and this next one I came across made me laugh

It's for all of you out there that may be dieting

 (something to think about).


interesting idea...


*********************************


DH and I get our Flu shots today!

(...hoping to have no more than a sore arm)


*********************************


I have to tell a short story... just because it's about kindness. We pick up our curb side groceries once a week from Central Market (which is a part of Heb groceries). The people who run this curb side pickup are so nice. They not only bring your groceries out, but ask you if you forgot anything... as they will run back inside and get it for you.

Today we had ordered a stuffed chicken breast with bacon and cheddar. They weren't able to fill that... but offered us a stuffed chicken breast with apple, cranberry, and pecan instead (which was nice enough to do and we said that would be fine). 

But then after the associate went to get that and was putting it in our trunk, she added that if we didn't like this particular stuffed chicken breast, to just call and they'd credit it... now THAT is kind (however I'm sure we will like it).


*******************************

Now for some funny cat posters:

(...cause we need to laugh)


I remember this happening...



interesting idea...


or matching anything during the pandemic...


That's it for today!

Hope you're having a good week.

Thanks for sharing my Wednesday!


Hugs (virtual),

Rian



Monday, October 4, 2021

a few thoughts about cooking...



(have felt this way only since the pandemic... and restaurants are a no go)


Thought I'd talk about cooking today. I like to cook. And I won't say that I'm a great cook... but I think I'm a fairly good cook. I can make all the normal dishes like beef and pork roasts and various chicken dishes. We eat a lot of chicken here. Some of our favorites are Chicken Tetrazzini and Sour Cream Chicken Enchiladas. 

(my Chicken Tetrazzini does have white wine in it)

I do have my own way to do boneless pork chops which marinades them overnight in salt and sugar and then pounds them, seasons them, and pan fries for 4 mins per side, then take them out and add brown sugar, chopped garlic, and butter to the pan.... return chops to pan and cook in oven for another 10 mins. - result is tender garlicly buttery sweet pork chops!

We don't eat a lot of beef. But I do hamburgers on occasion... and Shepherd's pie, and of course meat balls and spaghetti. 

I'm the only one in the house that likes Salmon... so when I cook it (at least once a week) I cook the boys something else. And I cook it the way I ate it in Alaska... with butter, garlic, brown sugar, and honey - so good!

Stuffed artichokes are another favorite around here... and we (DH and I - not grandson) love most fresh veggies. Fresh steamed asparagus with a little salt, pepper, and brown butter is great... as is fresh Brussel sprouts with a little salt, pepper, brown butter, and bacon!

Grandson is 21 and although he loves most of my cooking, he isn't fond of asparagus, Brussell sprouts or broccoli. He will eat corn, green beans, and salads. Luckily he does like garlic as I use it a lot along with onions, celery, and bell peppers in my cooking... use a little kosher salt and fresh ground pepper too. 

And although I don't generally eat potato salad or chicken salad when out ... I do really like my own!

And I love cooking magazines and shows... if they're doing recipes that don't take beaucoup ingredients. If it's too complicated, I shut down.



My mom's 'called for' dish every Thanksgiving was Oyster pie. She made the most delicious oyster pie... and served it before the main course (Turkey, etc.). I think all of us wanted that oyster pie more than we wanted the turkey. It was so-oo good.

(if you are not aware, oyster pie, oyster patties, or oyster stuffing are commonly served at Thanksgiving in New Orleans).

Oh, on a semi-related subject... I never cooked at home growing up... never did much cleaning either (except maybe my own room).  So once married, I had to learn on my own. We never lived close to family after college - moved right from LSUBR to Florida and then on to Texas. So although I did have access to family recipes, I had to figure it out without help. I think the first thing I ever cooked after we were married was 'scrambled eggs' (and I still like scrambled eggs!)

Well, that's  probably enough about cooking. Do you have a favorite thing you like to cook or your family likes you to make? Or perhaps something another person makes that you just love?

 

Hugs (virtual),

Rian

(I love baking too... but that's a post for another day.)



Friday, October 1, 2021

Take joy...

 




This has always been a favorite quote of mine.  But the way I first heard it was "Beyond the gloom of this world lies joy - Take Joy!


and recently I believe Debbie used 

the next 2 that I also love dearly:



and 

Love this too!


I've been reading The Dalai Lama's Cat as recommended by DJan. I love it... simple and to the point... with added insights and doses of loving kindness. A good read. 

I've also been reading several English mysteries (the Lord Edgington Investigates series) by Benedict Brown on my kindle. Enjoying that read also.

So this post will be short and sweet. I'm happy today... don't know why... but I'll take it! 

This pandemic has gone on far too long, but we're still hanging in there. We're still  washing our hands, still wearing our masks, and for the most part, still staying pretty close to home. Sometimes I get a bit antsy, so we take a walk around the neighborhood. But no restaurants, no group activities... yet. We figure that we can hold out until we see some reassurance that things are starting to look up. Our flu shot is scheduled for next week and most likely our booster will be in November. 

And hey, maybe I do know why I'm happy today... 

DH bought Dove bars! Want one?


Hugs (virtual),

Rian

(Forgot I wanted to post this pic of a cicada I took when we were walking around the neighborhood. I don't even know if it was alive... but it sure had pretty markings.)