bath, book review, books, flourish, summer, summer reading

summer reads

20170713_085830-1_resizedI am on my third check out of Seasonal Fruit Desserts by Deborah Madison.  No, not renewal, actual go to the library and check out the book again.

Do you do the same?  Do you review, thumb through, try a 20170713_091025-1_resizedrecipe or two and start to decide on how many stars you will be giving a book?

I happen to have a tendency to collect, buy, wish for, way, way too many cookbooks. Getting in the habit of checking them out first, before I buy has been a delightful option. So, last night, I dashed to the library and checked this beauty out once again.  Third time’s a charm.  I am buying this book of hers for my own.  Side note, I love it when I see that box from Amazon on my doorstep.  A little shiver goes up my spine.

Deborah Madison is a tremendous author and founding chef of Greens Restaurant in San Francisco.  We had the insight and good fortune of planning for and indulging in one of the most memorable meals of our lives at that glorious restaurant.    May I gently suggest you jot it down on your bucket list?  That meal, that view, that moment in time was honestly, one of the best of our lives.  

So today, I have some raspberries calling my name.  My crystal balls tells me there is a tart in the dreaming stage.  By tonight it will grace our table.

In the summer months, most days, I forgo the hour study on health and wellness in the morning and spend my morning, afternoon sitting in the sunshine and evening reading times with glorious summer reads.  Steamy, action packed, romance, mystery,  cookbooks, travel, adventure, can’t put down kind of books.

20170712_205630_resizedAs I have previously written about, I have only (so far) lost one book in the bubbling, swirling, frothy bath.  (yes, you can laugh).  I try to be much more careful.  Somehow magically, time flies and my cares & worries take a back seat, while I indulge in an excellent summer read. Before the water turned cold for the third time, I managed to zip through 145 pages of the latest Stuart Woods book,  Indecent Exposure.20170712_210015-1_resized

Summer time reading is where I get to indulge like a school girl free to read what she stumbles upon.  Pure entertainment to allow my mind skip and tumble and dance for fun.

Come Sundown by Nora Roberts is a 466-page turner that you will finish on a long20170712_081059_resized weekend.  Horses, high-end resort, intrigue, mystery,, sadness and romance……all rolled together easily transport you to a family in Montana and that beautiful big sky country.

Bread baking has tickled my fancy yet again.  I love to bake bread.  I go through phases where it is not on my “to-do” list all the time.  That yeasty smell has drawn me in again and I have purchased a few new books.

20170711_070636-1_resized_1We had the insight and good fortune to visit Ken Forkish’s bakery while visiting Portland, Oregon.  I have had his books on my wish list since the very moment I bit into the most heavenly piece of bread I have tasted in ages.  Before I even swallowed that first bite, I knew in my heart, I had to learn everything I could from this genius baker.  He has some quick videos on YouTube to help with the techniques which has made the baking so smooth.  Money well spent on these two beauties.

Not a book, however, one of the best documentaries we have watched in a long time was “What the Health” free on Netflix.  I would love, love, love to discuss this with anyone.  However, I am fully aware that it is not everyone’s cup of tea.  I just needed to share it, in case you were looking to improve your or your loved one’s health.  There.  Now, I shared, so I don’t have to worry and fret that I forgot to tell you.  Well worth your time to watch.

As the middle of July is knocking on the door, there is still plenty time to indulge in summer reads.

I know it is not a passion of some folks.  Just thought I would share some suggestions in the hopes that you will share what you are reading.

In this together, friends.

Chat soon.

reading

 

beauty, crafts, flourish, Uncategorized

mixer tattoos

My friend called it a Kitchen Aid Tattoo.    snortgiggle  (it’s a word I made up and hoping that it will catch on)

I have had my eye on a brand new fancy schmancy Kitchen Aid with beautiful flowers swirling all over it.  Yes, I have an envelope with money that I am saving for a new mixer.

20170501_184326_resized_1Here’s the reality, my 20+ something year old mixer is working as well as it was the day we brought her home.  Seriously, works perfectly!  There really is no reason on earth to buy a new one.

So, I just put a little paint on the old barn door.  Spent $15.00 on etsy for some vinyl decals.

Ta Da!!!!!  Brand new tattoo covered mixer.

20170502_114459-1_resized_2

Just sharing the goodness!  Isn’t she pretty?

 

 

 

flourish, grace, grateful, gratitude, humble

1,000 bits of glittering gratitude

colorful elephantJoke:  How do you eat an elephant?

Answer:  One bite at a time, of course!

 

Who would have guessed that I would be writing my 1,000th blog post? Day by day, one bite at a time.

Writing is the easy part. Trying to write “one glittering paragraph” a bit more tricky.

 

 “To get the right word in the right place is a rare achievement. To condense the diffused light of a page of thought into the luminous flash of a single sentence, is worthy to rank as a prize composition just by itself…Anybody can have ideas–the difficulty is to express them without squandering a quire of paper on an idea that ought to be reduced to one glittering paragraph.” Mark Twain

I began writing this blog in an effort to sleep through the night.   I use to wake up at 3 am and have a need to write down my thoughts, my grocery list, things I was grateful for or things that pushed my buttons.  I decided to write during the day, so I could get a peaceful night’s rest.

However, I never dreamed in a million and one years that I would be given so many bits of goodness (as well as 8 solid hours of nightly sleep).  Imagine one million pieces of glitter all over your keyboard right this very moment?

No one tells you, when you write a blog you will be bathed in Grace, Goodness & Glitter. No one says that you will be gently reminded, daily, how many wonderful loving people are in your circle.

It is never mentioned, if you write a blog your new followers could very well become real life friends.friends

As you write, you share a little smidgen of your heart and soul.  That brief glimpse gently sprinkles glitter on your new friends.  And we all know, you can’t sprinkle glitter on others without getting some on yourself.

We all read blogs and sometimes forget to leave a comment.  Maybe because like me, you forget your google account password and are too lazy to go look it up.  Or you get interrupted, or what they wrote hit too close to home and you can’t figure out the right words to say.

I must gush and tell you, receiving a comment pushes my swing.  You know, high enough that the legs come up on the swing set, and your stomach drops for just a slight second?

Receiving a comment, reminds me every so gently to leave a comment next time I read another blog. Oh, and warms my very soul.

Some days, I receive private emails telling me they read my blog and liked it. Or it touched a nerve and they had to tell me a story.    Inside Christmas cards I find a note on the back:  ps.  I love your blog, never miss reading it.  

Once in a while I am flabbergasted that someone, not in my usual circle of campers, reads my blog and comments. A jaunty tip of the hat to you, my friend.

I am humbled by former school chums, relatives far away, former co-workers who make a quick comment and lift me up.  On a daily basis, I  am gently reminded of the oodles of good eggs in my basket.

The gratitude circle around me is astonishing.  If you ever feel alone in this great big beautiful world, may I suggest start writing a blog.

The writing helps sooth your soul. Writing gently reminds you of all that you have. gratitude

Writing a blog gives me a place to work out life.  People raise their hands and offer a suggestion or idea.

That moment when you have downsized and think oh no, what have we done?  This is too small. I need to tell someone.  (Come to find out, it is perfect & lovely and you just needed to “talk” about it.)

The exact second you see a sign that says, Make a Wish and you know you want to share it with your circle of campers.

The moment in time, when you make the biggest decision in your life…….you know it is the right thing to do, for you, it is just so damn big & scary.  Slowly, word by word, blog by blog you reveal the choices you made.

If you ever, ever feel lonely, start a blog and tell people you are: 

a home school family

read magazines back to front

a vegetarian

study one hour a day

you politely & sternly said no thank you to chemotherapy and radiation and chose a different healing path

Readers come to your rescue.  They pat your hand and tell you it will be okay.  They bap you up side the head with a pillow and yell, COME TO YOUR SENSES!  Sometimes readers know magically what you need and leave a heartfelt comment that for some silly reason makes your eyes water.

Writing a blog was suppose to ease my soul, calm my spirit, empty my brain so I could sleep.

Funny thing happened on the way to a good nights’ sleep.

Writing has swung open the window and let fresh air in, lightened the mood & makes it easier to breathe.

There are a bazillion things to write about and I have only covered 1,000. Apparently, I have oodles to say.

Writing gives me a place to shout at the top of my lungs all that I am grateful for.

As I write day by day, as if by magic my circle of friends grows at that same pace.

If you are on the fence about writing a blog, let me give you a gently shove.  You will love that you jumped in.

I am extremely grateful for the folks that have pushed my swing, held my hand, listened to me, disagreed with me and loved me…… and I am mighty appreciative for a good night’s sleep.

Heartfelt thanks to my followers, my friends.  I started this blog for me, however, somewhere along the path, it slipped from helping myself to gently becoming an honor and privilege in sharing this journey with you.

You guys, thanks kindly,  for holding my hand and agreeing to wear wearing cute shoes and not eat canned peas.

You make my world more sparkly, you lift me up and I am truly grateful.

Today, I will use a teal glitter pen and write in swirly font on a square slip of white paper (I will most likely doodle all over it)

5/10/2016

1,000th blog post

1,000 things to be grateful forgreen hydrangeas

In this together, friends.

We will chat tomorrow.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

flourish, healing, health, Uncategorized

ch, ch, ch, ch, changes

One of my least favorite things to do is to shop for and buy clothes for myself or anyone, really.  If I had won the big power ball drawing a couple weeks ago, right this minute, there would be some single mom or dad that needed a job and loved to shop, would be getting their list together to go out and find, shop, buy me some clothes.

Seriously.

Even when I was a young girl.  I didn’t care for shopping one iota.

My mother would buy our clothes at Nordstrom’s before Nordstrom’s was cool ………… some summer outfit sets from Sears catalog & I do remember standing in the downtown JC Penney’s store while she shopped for our socks, slips and undies.

Some of the clothes I liked, some I really loathed.  It didn’t really matter, I wore the stuff anyway.  I did not voice my opinion.  That’s just how proper young ladies behaved.

One morning it was chilly, by then girls were allowed to wear pants to school (for the record, my mother was against this ruling), I put on a brand new pair of tan colored corduroy pants and I am sure, a matching cardigan set.  One thing I liked about those pants were that they were bell bottom.  Another thing I liked, they were hip huggers.  Finally, I was starting to dress like a cool kid.tan pants

While walking down 7th Street to school, you KNOW what I am going to type next…… I was day dreaming.  I was looking at the clouds and trying to find animals.  I was looking at tree branches and looking for hidden shapes.  One thing led to another and down I went.

Ripped knees (yes, both), bloody, gravel, heck even part of the corduroy went missing.  Weird, I didn’t know you could rub that stuff off?  My palms hurt and had little pieces of gravel embedded into them.  They were red and ugly.

I turned and walked back home. crying.

I had to ring the bell.  My mother came to the door, hands on hips and before opening the screen door,  sternly inquired:  How did this HAPPEN?

me:  I don’t know.

her:  think

me:  I guess I was day dreaming and my long legs somehow got tangled into the bell bottom part and I sort of tripped on the uneven sidewalk & I fell down.

her:  Was it because you didn’t like the pants or the color that you were not careful? (how do moms know that stuff?)  Go get cleaned up and I will lay out another outfit for you to wear today.  I will drive you to school or you will be late.

me:  yes, mom

I don’t even have to type that she chose a dress for me to wear and she hurried me along so that I would not be late.

~~~~~~~~~~~~

3 years ago, when I was told I was extremely ill, one of my first questions was “How did this HAPPEN”?  Four “specialists” later, no one had an answer.  They told me to focus on the here & now and not to worry about that nonsense.  “These things just happen”.

side note:  I can’t even begin to imagine saying to my mother, “these things just happen”.  I can tell you, even typing those 4 words feels like sassing 40+ years later.

I wrote down 15 things I thought got me in this pickle.  I finally found a wise person who asked me one question, you guessed it, “How do you think this happened?”  She was the first & last medical person to have asked that question.

I handed over my list.  She added another 2 things at the bottom of my list.

Great starting place, she said.  Now , we at least know what we need to address so this does not happen again.   Let’s get to it.

Today, 3 years later, 134 positive changes and choices……..I am doing better.  I am too much of a chicken, realist, nervous Nelly to say I am fixed, cured to slip back into my old undereducated, non-researched ways.  In no way do I want to JINX my FLOURISHING good health. Flourish, texas logo

Here’s the thing:  most likely you need to sit down, be honest, begin a list to figure out how this thing (heart attack, cancer, divorce, job loss, fender bender, lost phone, friendship break-up  ….) happened.  Then you need to take positive action!  legal pad.jpg

You (me) had a huge part in the problem.  Take ownership.  It feels powerful.  It feels like you are taking control and could actually solved this puzzle.

Maybe you were day dreaming or not paying attention and caused a fender bender or maybe you did not value the job you had and were sloppy?  Are you dressing for the job you currently have or the one you want?  Friendships take effort, just maybe you didn’t put in your fair share?   Have you fallen into the trap of over glamorizing the excuse of being  “busy”?  Quite possibly, your poor choices of:  water, lack of iodine, lack of vitamin d, daily sugar fix, no exercise, stress, heavy metals, extreme poor food choices, lack of green food had something to do with your illness?

You can blame the other person, luck of the draw, bad luck or “these things just happen”. The truth of the matter is , blame heals no one or situation.

Maybe you didn’t like the ugly tan color of the pants in the first place?  Maybe you should have been strong enough to politely say, no thank you to begin with? You may need to work up, gather, learn courage now to politely say, no thank you and walk away, head held high.

I am here to tell you,  if you put enough effort and action into your HEALTHY HEALING, THRIVING, FLOURISHING list the odds are stacked in your favor.

“The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.” Aristotle

We are in this together, here’s to our good health and wellness.