Thursday, February 25, 2010

Beautiful Blogger Award

A wonderful blogger I have recently discovered gave my blog this award.
Now I have the fun of passing it along to 7 bloggers. I believe with all my heart that every blog I follow, and each blogger who follows me here, deserves this award. You are each dear friends and it is pretty near impossible to select just seven of you.
Upon receiving the award the rules are:
Thank the blogger who gave it to you.
Select 7 deserving bloggers and list them on your blog, and tell them you gave them the award.
Share 7 things about yourself.
Here are the 7 blogs I am giving this award to, and let's be honest, there are many more also very deserving. Name of this blog is great: "Aging Disgracefully", which is one of my personal goals :)
7 things about me:
I visited Petra, Jordan on horseback. Petra is the "rose red city in the desert" and wonderful to visit.
I slept in a police fort in the desert (see above).
Flowers make me smile.
I volunteer with a public library program that connects a volunteer with a homebound senior, and I bring her library books once a week and visit with her. If interested, ask your local library if they have a "book buddy" program.
I love Jesus.
My husband and I enjoy drinking coffee made with freshly ground coffee beans, each morning. Organic coffee is best to buy for the environment.
Laughing is one of my favorite activities.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Cineraria is so Pretty

Originally uploaded by brewbooks

I mentioned here that I planted a cineraria in the little garden I created in honor of my cat, and someone told me they had not heard of cineraria, so I am posting a photo here.
Isn't it cheerful? It likes shade and semi-shade and I have a lot of shade and the plants reach about 18 inches tall, with a nice rounded form.
There are lots of colors available including rose. I am so happy with my one plant that I plan to buy several more in different colors for shady areas.
I hope you enjoy cineraria too.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Beef Shank Barley Soup recipe

I rarely post recipes, but here is an extra tasty one for Beef Shank and Barley soup.
The amounts are for two people, with enough left over for dinner the next night too.
2 lbs. beef shanks with the bone and marrow in (or leftover pot roast or other beef, I always use beef shanks since the marrow gives a unique flavor).
1/2 cup barley
2 cans of beef broth or stock (4 cups)
carrots, an onion, 4 cloves of garlic
4 big portobello mushrooms
Soak the barley in a cup of stock for 30 minutes
Slice the carrots, onion, garlic and make thick slices of the mushrooms
Brown the vegetables, then brown the meat
Put the browned meat and vegetables in the large (2 quart) pot with the barley, add the rest of the stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and cook covered for 2 hours on the stove top.
Have extra stock available if needed.
The barley thickens the soup beautifully and 1/2 cup becomes a lot of barley when cooked.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

RIP Beloved Tabby Cat

RIP Beloved Tabby says it all. He looks kind of old and sad here. Big Boy gave so much love to our family, and we gave him lots of love too. He died in the wee early morning hours of 2/13/10, in his sleep. What a cool cat; he showed up at our back door when he was about 6 and spent 10 years with us.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

The winner of Thin Places is ...

Champions Trophy
Originally uploaded by DannyMx

Ta da!
Announcing that the winner of a copy of "Thin Places: a Memoir" by Mary DeMuth is Robin, of Robin's New Song.
I use to select the winner.
Enjoy, Robin. I sent you an email asking for your snail mail address so I can mail you the book.

Monday, February 8, 2010

free copy of Thin Places by Mary DeMuth

Mary DeMuth’s memoir, Thin Places, shows her readers that she is a powerful writer, not afraid to tackle very dark places in her life, and to walk us through how she gradually became a strong and beautiful wife and mom.
DeMuth faced pain in her childhood, including being raped, the death of her father, and a mother who, to put it kindly, lacked mothering skills. When her mom found the author crying  a while after the death of her dad, her mom did not hug her, but told her it was time to get over that.
I admire how DeMuth incorporates Christian understanding as she heals, and now this book will help others heal. How did she gain the courage to write these hard words? My own childhood was sheltered and sweet, but everyone goes through heart ache and I can empathize with her tribulations. This author, instead of staying stuck in suffering and silence, shares her unusually difficult journey and gives readers encouraging words and ideas for healing.
For all who enjoy memoirs, stories of harsh childhoods and learning tools for becoming a joyful wife and mom, I recommend this book.
I will give away one copy of Thin Places by using to select the winner among commenters on this post. The publisher supplied me with this copy. Thank you publishers, and the winner will be selected on Saturday February 13.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Wordless Wednesday Tropical Beach

Summer Fun
Originally uploaded by Nicholaus Haskins

Would you like to be on a tropical beach today?

Monday, February 1, 2010

Avatar and Gone with the Wind battle it out

Hi Friends,
Recent headlines trumpet "Avatar biggest money making movie yet" and I always wonder about such headlines. It turns out that headlines that say this are not correct and are very disingenuous.
My dh and I enjoy seeing movies in the theater on the big screen and give a high rating to our most recent film viewed, Sherlock Holmes.
We haven't seen Avatar yet, and aim to, soon.
I saw this fun link
The link shows movie gross earnings adjusted for inflation. The key here is "adjusted for inflation"!
Using this benchmark, the experts there determined that Avatar is no. 26 for earnings, thus far. Numero uno is Gone with the Wind, followed by Star Wars, Sound of Music, and more, and you can read the ratings by following the link.
What impresses me is that there are more than six billion people on earth now,  vs. perhaps one billion when Gone With the Wind was released, and today there are so many more theaters and abundant technology, yet Gone With the Wind has not been toppled from its rank, at least not yet.