Monday, September 28, 2009

A-maize-ing Corn

Our late sown, meager little corn patch actually produced much better than we thought it would there for a while. Instead of corn as high as an elephants eye; it had been more like knee high to a grasshopper. That was then...this is now. It made up for lost time. We ate fresh corn several times and got lots for the freezer.

Preparing corn for the freezer always brings back memories for me.

When I was in high school, we lived in a teeny tiny little old house. It had an attached laundry room, pantry, and woodshed, with a weathered wood covered porch running the length of them. My sisters and I would sit at the end of the porch, facing the orchard, singing and talking, and shucking the corn. Then I would help Mama blanch it, cool it in the icewater, and slice off the yummy slabs into the pan. When the corn is like a jig saw puzzle in which the pieces have not been all separated yet, mmmm that's it's absolute best!
That porch, the little old house, the orchard; they were the inspiration for my folk song lyrics, poetry, and black and white photography. They all fed the soulful, melancholy emotions of a teen-age girl, listening to Simon and Garfunkle, Judy Collins, and Joni Mitchell at the time.

A few years later, I was living in California. I was a young wife with a baby who was only a couple of months old. Jim was gone for 3 1/2 months to San Antonio, Texas. I was listening to Carla Emery on the radio, promoting her Encyclopedia of Country Living. I thought if we had a little family now, then we should have a little freezer too. My plan was to surprise him while he was gone, and get one. We had a very limited budget, every penny was spoken for. So I lived on what food was already in the cupboard. What I remember the most were meals and meals of my Mom's home canned green beans from our last visit to Oregon, and instant mashed potatoes. There was no one else to cook for, so I just fixed the same thing day in and day out, saving the food money for the freezer. I can't tell you how thrilled I was when it was delivered!
That next weekend,
I loaded Sarah into the car,
splurged on a taco for lunch,
then headed to the local farmer's market
and got CORN!
I shucked it, blanched it, cooled it, sliced it off, and snitched the very yummiest choice slabs, before bagging the rest and freezing it. I was so proud when Jim came home, having him cover his eyes, then SURPRISE! as I showed him the freezer, almost empty,
but for the corn.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Heart's desire

This picture was taken earlier this month at my parent's place.

As the deer panteth for the water

So my soul longeth after Thee

You alone are my heart's desire

And I long to worship Thee

You alone are my strength, my shield

To you alone may my spirit yield

You alone are my heart's desire

And I long to worship Thee

You're my friend and you are my brother

Even though you are a king

I love you more than any other

So much more than anything

I want you more than gold or silver

Only you can satisfy

You alone are the real joy giver

And the apple of my eye.

~~A. Martin Nystrom

I have always liked this song, and been moved into a spirit of worship, when it's being played.

He is faithful and true to HIS part in this song.

I KNOW that He alone IS the real joy giver, And that He alone IS my strength and shield, but truthfully, my own selfishness, stubbornness, and yes... sometimes apathy, get in the way of me being the wonderfully yielded, adoring person portrayed in this song. I have to remember it's ok, i'm singing it, not hypocritically, like I've "arrived", but because it's what I desire to be.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Corn's ready...Yesiree bob

Did up some for the freezer today.

Managed to take time out with the camera and practice some things I've been studying about. "Take pictures of flowers from other angles rather than down from above or straight on."

I tried shooting from the back side of the flower, attempting to capture the sunlight through the petals.
Anna and I cut the little punkin's hair today into a bob. Her bangs still need to finish growing the rest of the way out in order to look right. She looks cute no matter what, but we won't be putting out our barber pole any time soon! We bribed her with a lollipop, and it was still like pulling teeth out of a chicken getting her to hold still.

We had grilled hamburgers for dinner and there was rootbeer for a treat.....
or as punkin calls it...
"hambuggers and boot rear"

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

So many messes, so little time

Grandma used to have a Pennyslvania Dutch saying on the wall that said:

"The hurrieder I go, the behinder I get."

Hmmmmm, I think there's something to that.....
Canning season seems to find me scurrying, rummaging, and tossing herbs and spices about, which leads to even more rummaging.

Heidi's Living Lovely challenge this week is to reclaim an area of the house,
with before and after pictures.

There's so many areas to choose from, I chose the smaller, more managable one.
I always use the grocery ads to line the shelves in the pantry.
When i clean and change them, i can compare to the current prices.
What's this on the last one? Bread 29 cents? Just kidding, Mom : )

Sorry for the fuzziness of these pix. Jim is researching our health care optometry coverage
as I speak. My eyesight is not so hot these days, guess i need to switch from manual to autofocus for a while.

Not necessarily pretty, but functional.

I've always thought of a wall of home canned stuff as a thing of beauty. It reminds me of a stained glass window.


the bountiful blessings

Monday, September 21, 2009


Love this CD too.

Canning Spaghetti sauce with Andrea Bochelli today.

oh, that wonderful romantic voice.

Can't understand a word of it,

But it soundsa like:

"Oh my dear, let me sweepa you offa your tired, achey feet, and fanna your fevered brow with an olive branch as you sippa a cool glass of wine, watching the sun set over the golden hills of Tuscany".

Yep, i'm sure that's what he's saying.


Sunday, September 20, 2009

"Girl put your records on,

tell me your favourite song, You go ahead, let your hair down."
I sing along with Corinne Bailey Rae on the treadmill.
We used to always have music playing around here. Seems like not so much the past few years. With having a cold on Friday, things that had to be done, (and things I'd been wanting to do), there needed to be some drastic measures taken. The bed and a quilt were calling my name......
No siestas allowed!
I stripped the bed and laundered the sheets, and put on one of my favorite CD's....
Lifescapes Just Relax Mexico

It inspired me:
Made 3 freezer bags of this Mexi veggie dish with zucchini, corn and tomatoes.
And made this Rick Bayless recipe for Mexican CORN ICE CREAM, that I'd been wanting to try.

Alicia had said she didn't like the cinnamon in it, and since I am sort of picky about what i have cinnamon in, I decided to fore go it. I also didn't think I would like the orange liqueur in it, but thought an equally large dose of good Mexican vanilla sounded yummy.

Oh my oh my oh my ..... DEE-LISH-EE-OH-SO!!! It gave me the strength to go on!

Pear preserves, another batch of salsa, and canned tomatoes.

I told Anna this CD really makes me feel like working, relieves my stress, and puts me in a good mood.

She suggested I press....


Nehemiah 8:10

. . . . . . the joy of the LORD is your strength.
Nehemiah 8:10

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Gruss Gott!

(photo from the Mt Angel Octoberfest site)

After living in Upper Bavaria, germany for 3 years, we enjoy an occasional polka, the chicken dance, and some good german food.

We had planned on going to the Mt. Angel festivities again this year. Alot of German foods, I'm happier with our homemade fare, but they have one vendor with schnitzel, that we particularly liked.

It turned out we are battling colds this weekend, so strolling in the rain with chills, didn't sound like a lot of fun.

Instead, we are grilling bratwurst, fixing curly fries, and baking apfel strudels, in the comfort of our cosy haus.

Yodelay, Yodelay, Yodelayhee hoo!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Not talking Anne Shirley, here...

Carrots, carrots, carrots.....had lots, so made some of this:

Copper Penny Salad

8 to 10 large carrots, peeled

1 medium onion chopped

1 large bell pepper in strips

1 lb. mushrooms in 1/2 (or 1/4's)

4 ribs celery - chopped

1 can garbanzo beans, (optional)

1 can tomato soup

2/3 cup sugar

1 cup oil

3/4 cup vinegar

1 tsp. dry mustard

1/2 tsp. pepper

1 tsp. salt

Slice and cook carrots (don't over cook), Drain, and while still hot add salad dressing mixture.

When cold, add rest of vegetables.

Keeps well. (But mushrooms do darken, and look better fresh)

This makes alot!

This recipe is from Dona, a family friend from years ago. She made lunch for my little family, and we ate it at her huge burlwood dining table, one lovely fall day.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Come into my parlor......

said the spider to the fly. Every fall we see alot more spiders, and this year is no exception. Gearing up for winter, I guess. I know we are...with the installation of a new furnace system..... can you join me and the bank account in saying..... ouch?

Looks like the diamond necklaces my new little friends made me will be the only ones seen around here for years to come!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Psalm 19:1

The heavens declare the glory of God;
and the firmament sheweth
his handywork.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Mama & Her Flowers

Having a nice visit with my parents this weekend.

Here's a glimpse into my Mama's flower garden:

How exciting! A pkg. arrived from my sister, today, and I was able be there to watch Mama open it.

Mama had been wanting a Virginia Creeper vine like they had covering one end of the house in the valley.

It arrived in great shape, and she's in 7th heaven! Mama and her flowers.....just like Jello... there's always room for more!

Thursday, September 10, 2009


School's back in session, and AAAAACCCCCCHHHHHHHH!

I've been standing, cleaning out a closet of boxes, and a trunk full of family pictures and school certificates, report cards, achievement test scores, and school pictures from the past oh,.......25 years or so. Sure would've been easier if I'd had ho-hum kids instead of over-achievers!
And let's see, it's been how many years since my last kid was in school?

How did it get like this?! There's no just chucking the whole lot, because every so often I find a birth certificate or passport or some other little gem that somehow joined the mayhem.

exhausted sigh

Could someone lead me to the Dunce chair in the corner?
Wear the cap?
I don't care,
just as long as I can sit down.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

New Every Morning

This was the view out our bedroom window this morning, I was reminded of this passage.

It is of the LORD's mercies that we are not consumed,
because His compassions fail not.
They are new every morning:
great is thy faithfulness.
Lamentations 3:22, 23

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Gone Fishin'

The idea for these pictures came a few weeks ago, when she was running all over the house with a bunch of shoes strung on a long scarf, like a stringer full of fish.

She's been trying out new vocabulary words lately like "frustrated" and "actually".
"Actually" when I'm not "frustrated" with her....she's pretty darn cute.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Labor Day.......

In the movie Groundhog Day, a reporter wakes up repeating the same day
and over




Groundhog Day ? labor day?
Do you feel like you're waking to the same day (shower curtain) over and over?
A. Sarah started it all. She got this cute curtain, and we all just fell in love with it's cheery zinnias full of color! What a happy way to start the day! We asked permission and Sarah was gracious.......
B. Kate got one too. Something colorful and fun for the kiddo's bath.
C. I got one too. Except, i was afraid i'd made a big mistake. It just didn't look right in my bathroom. We'd had a really serene "zen" like look in there with only white and light natural accents, and now

..................... ZIP!

.................... BOOM!
.................... BAH!

So i got little colored paper lanterns to go along side the white one, and put out all of Anna's cosmetic stuff that went well, trying to balance the color in the room better. It still didn't look right to me, until our white bathmat unraveled, and i had to get new.

Voila! A new orange mat, "made it work"....finally! I guess it was just like needed to be well grounded. And i needed time to get comfortable with it.

How did you spend your labor day? We actually got quite a few little household projects done.
  1. a towel hook in the kitchen
  2. a lock on a bedroom door
  3. a rug replaced in the library
  4. laundry
  5. a computer desk drawer repaired
  6. general cleaning
  7. a sense of accomplishment

Sunday, September 6, 2009

".....Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things."

Matthew 12: 34,35

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Pillow Talk

The jury is still out on this one. i'm trying to like it.... really i am. The chillow pillow, supposed to be good for that which ails me.
I promised to share another sewing project: Well, this pillow was sewn on Saturday, but it's mate is still just cut out, and I'm not sure when I'll get it back to it.......
It does look sort of lonely....... *note to self: time to wash the sofa slipcovers!
The pillow fabric has been hanging around here for a couple of years, is part of the "spring" look decor plan. We are either very late, or really early, everyone knows autumn's in the air.
As is evident by the Autumn Sedum, in all it's glory. The bees are loving it.

Hello my little Sweetie!


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