Friday, July 30, 2010

best coffee drink

1 tsp instant coffee
1 tsp (heaping) caramel vanilla coffee mate
1 tsp agave nectar sweetener
1/3 cup very hot water
~pour over~
1 large glass ice cubes (stir)
1 cup almond milk (or milk preference)

This is a family summer favorite. Very delicious and much more budget friendly than Starbucks. Enjoy : )

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

what it's like to be one...

How blessed am I to have 2 babies in the family to love on?! This is Liam, my great nephew from my niece Ashley. He is the perfect bouncing baby bundle boy and a treasure to our family. He turned one this last week and we celebrated his adorableness with a swimming party. Of course, the colorful plastic cups are just as interesting as anything else around...when you're one :)

And talk about a cool flotation device, I want one of these. Every once in awhile he would stick his tongue out and lick the was a really hot day, we all wanted to do it!

My sister Diana is "Grandma" to the birthday boy (I'm So Green ;) and it's hard to be anywhere near him without wanting to give him a love squeeze.

Shark Butt!!! How cute are these? "Oh, let me outside already!"

Very content sitting in daddy's lap after the presents were opened. "And what's this?..."

Something that belongs in your mouth...when it's your birthday and you are only one.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

no emergency rooms

Fifteen years ago, I was my doctor's first lupus patient. Because of me, he took on the responsibility of learning everything he could about it. In that way I like to think that I am special to him, as he is to me. Many of you made me feel gently held for the last two days, thank you. I don't go to emergency rooms during the week. My doctor allows me to go directly to his office without any notice and he sees me quick. He has witnessed enough of my flares to warrant his sympathy towards the waiting room time that I would have to spend in some hospital and doesn't want me to suffer through that. He is an angel, our angel.

So, I showed up the day before yesterday about an hour after posting. I was in tears when he entered the room and I'm not a crier, so he was taken aback. "Whoa, whoa...what is going on here!" I blubbered harder and my husband had to speak for me. Well, he usually gets the details wrong because he is just as upset as I am, so I'm interrupting him saying, "No, no!" but still can't form a sentence and my doctor immediately gives me a couple of shots. hee

His nurses are also very awesome (and like family) so the newly hired nurse comes into the room to be introduced to me (being that they see me quite often) and here I am red eyed booger nosed and looking like a train wreck but managed a drug induced smile and held my hand out to her. (that's right newbie, you must shake the crazy lady's hand) hee hee

The rest of that day was a blur of television and heaving anything I tried to eat or drink. Those of you out there that expressed empathy because of your own shared experiences with migraines, can I just say this...throwing up because of such intense pain is the W.O.R.S.T-D.A.Y-E.V.E.R (!!!)

Yesterday I woke up still not migraine free, but at least the ice pick had been removed from behind my right eye. I braved going outside to potty the dogs and sat down holding my head in my hands. Sitting in the corner of my porch are all of my cactus/succulent plants. I briefly peeked at them and lo and behold a cactus that I have had for at least 10 years was in bloom for the first time ever! I smiled, asked it to please hold out until today and I am happy to report that things are down to a dull roar...
and here is that flower. Now I'm going back to bed...

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

migraines and moo shoo pork

Life has been rough for the last week. I'm not a complainer, so actually writing a post about this is difficult for me. The general heat wave that has been hitting the USA this last week has activated my the lupus and I have been feeling all kinds of horrible. A cluster of migraines being the most annoying symptom. I can deal with body pain, I can sit and have a complete conversation with you and you would never know I was in any pain, but migraines are a different breed of pain altogether. Most of the time I can't even form words, let alone a coherent sentence. I have no picture to liven this post, I can't look through the lens and make any sense, it's all a blur to me. Mentally, I have to fight with my body. That is how I learned the skill of faking ignoring pain and pushing past it. But this week I feel like a beaten soldier and...I miss my daughter really bad *tears* (that came out of left field) whoa, i guess i need to cry about that (pause) Lord, I'm a mess!

Okay, so, I don't like moo shoo pork and apparently I don't like any meat these days. When my sister was here she cooked the entire week 'Vegan' style. I didn't miss the meat at all.(hubby did) Ever since then, I can't even think about eating meat without a stomach lurch, I tried...bbq chicken(blah!) turkey burgers(ick!) I tried to swallow the first bite and just couldn't get it down(???)

I'm not sure I would ever call myself a Vegetarian because it sounds rather political to me and I'm not about that. I love animals and I don't mind eating them (sorry) I just can't right now. My body is having a visceral reaction and I'm listening. And I must say that I find it all very interesting...maybe my love for God's creatures are subliminally calling to me and I hear them now? "Moo, Bah, Cluck!" okay okay I won't eat you!

I've got to stop now, I can barely look at this screen anymore, but you get the idea. I could use some prayers. I confess to feeling a little beaten down, weak of spirit, confused and oh so tired of hurting.

thanks so much

Sunday, July 18, 2010

are you a foodie?

What is a Foodie? Not yet defined in Webster's Dictionary, by observation, I think that Foodies are people who's lives revolve around food. I could be wrong and feel free to give me your definition of a person who calls themselves a Foodie. My daughter and her boyfriend are deeply Foodies. They think and discuss the subject of food all the time. Me? Not so much. But, when my sister Denise came here with her 2 full months of implementing a Vegan diet, everyone complied. All of the dishes she made began looking like this. (or a variation thereof) Beautiful each and every dish she made. Here's the cutest part...Denise uses fresh herbs and as soon as Cedar smells that Basil, he comes running.Den gives him a small branchy leaf and up it goes into his nose! He walked around and around sniffing that Basil until it was clean snuffed out! And of course, he got a piece for me too (he is so good at sharing) and we both filled our lungs with this herby delight.

Well here on the farm we've been having 100 degree weather. The almonds have filled to the brim with sweet nectar and it's time for the heat to start drying them out.

When they do begin to dry and split, it looks like this
and it's happening already here and there.

My husband was mowing down each rows
with the tractor and kicking up
quite a bit of dust along with it.

When he got this close I ran...

Then I watched him and this loud machine
make a hair pin turn.I yelled, "Whoo Hoo Honey!
Look at my tractor driving greasy sweaty dirt covered Man!"

And I still had my nightgown of the perks that comes along with living out in the country : ) So, back to the food. Denise has been gone about 10 days now and I haven't been able to eat meat ever since. I gag when I see
it and have no desire to eat it. I don't want to become a Vegan, but I think I could easily become a Vegetarian and do just fine.

So...are you a Foodie?

Friday, July 16, 2010

puppy lovins

I have to say that having a toddler around for a week kind of freaked out my dogs. Oh, they loved Cedar, even played with him and snuck in some puppy kisses when they could. Baxter really enjoyed when Cedar sat in the high chair. Any food that ended up on the floor was immediately gobbled up by him.He (Bax) rarely leaves my side and this is his latest favorite place...up on the couch cushion near my head. I rest best when I'm reading and I've been doing that a lot this week. I love him dearly and I think it's funny that he found a new way to get as close as possible even when mommy has a book in her lap.

cute silly puppy...

Happy Friday : )

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

they're in Thailand...

Just wanted to share some pictures that my daughter and her love Jon has sent me from Thailand. They took a cooking class *how fun* so the food you see they made themselves! She is teasing me with some pretty awesome jewelry and doing the same to us all with the beauty of her surroundings. Geez I miss her like crazy!

Ahhh...she wore the dress I made her...sweet girl!Oh to be twenty something and having adventures around the world. I raised my children to be independent, responsible and to be kind servants to others. Now, they are both off doing all of those things and more... I couldn't be happier and proud. God is good and I am very blessed and feeling the wonder of that today : )

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

last day

Suddenly, the big suitcase came out and things began to look suspicious. I was following him around and this is how he looked at me once he saw it. He became very serious and I said,
"Where are you going?"

Then he tried to push the suitcase with little success. Was he happy to be going home? We certainly could tell that he missed his daddy.

He turned on a dime and came right up to me looking very disgruntled.

Then he hugged my legs...I think he knew he was leaving and had mixed emotions about it. Auntie dd certainly knew how he felt.


We loaded everything back into Uncle jj's truck and before you knew it he was out like a light.

When he woke up, we were in the airport parking lot. Denise has always said that he wakes up happy...

I couldn't believe they were leaving, the time went by so fast. This little monkey boy was ready to get on the plane.


These beautiful mosaic birds adorn our airport. I want one!

He has very good people watching skills and these cute harness strappy leash things weren't around when I had kids. I could have really used one for Mark (my very own monkey boy!)

Cedar and I had a moment together while Den was checking in. I squished up my face and said, "I love you stinky face..."
...and the look I got back said it all!

Monday, July 12, 2010


Denise is wonderful at keeping consistency in Cedar's daily schedule. She herself is very spontaneous and it's not easy traveling with a toddler but she does it with grace. The days flowed and we have a way of finding humor in everything, so there was a lot of laughing. She never feels like company to me. Each time she has stayed here it feels like she never left from the last. The rituals were very normal, but the subject matter is precious to me...priceless!

~ nutritious lunches with little bear ~

~ window gazing ~

~ auntie dd chasing Cedar ~
~ down the halls ~~ around the kitchen ~

~ lots of coloring ~


~ bath time fun ~

~ rocking with uncle jj before bed ~

Sunday, July 11, 2010

park outing

On the day that Uncle jj put vitamins on the trees, we decided to go to our local park to have a picnic. The weather was extremely hot and the playground equipment was not very inviting. However, there was a Teeter Totter that called my name and I said to Den, "Why not?!" So, we placed our curvy bottoms, one on each side and I held Cedar on my lap. Up and Down the spring loaded ride made us giggle and laugh. When we'd had enough, I tried to get up first while holding Cedar in my arms. My foot got caught on the handle and down I went, baby and all. I twisted just in time so that Cedar landed on me while I was sprawled flat on the bark covered ground. Denise was equally worried about us both and I was hoping no one was watching. I never claimed to be graceful ; ) and thank goodness we don't have a picture of THAT!

"Not too sure how I like this snack."

"Ahhh...nothing like a cool breeze."

"Did you see the size of that bird?"

"Hee...the wind tickles my neck."

"Auntie dd, please put down the camera now."

"Mmm I love my mommy so much!"
"and I love you too little bean."

~Auntie dd blowing bubbles~~*~

Back home chillin out before nap time.

Mommas cuddles to end the afternoon.I feel so blessed and savored every moment. Each day our bonds grew deeper and deeper.