Monday, August 30, 2010

once upon a time, i was a beast.

I laughed when this title came to me.
Told it to Anna, and planned on naming this post exactly that.
Well, only because I spent the morning with half a ton of zucchini.
(laugh again)
I like to call this one The Phantom Hand.
I don't know how many zucchini there were. Only that people (namely, Grandpa from his veggie stand, and our couple-blocks-away funny/sweetneighbor lady) have been giving them to us left and right, mostly huge ones . . .
The cup I'm drinking out of, that's a zucchini end. Yup. Huge thang. Ben picked that one from our garden. When I cut it open, it was warm from the sun. Odd, because the others were cool and picked days ago.
Looking at the bowls of chopped zucchini, I didn't even dream that it would amount to as much as it did.
When I was done with the food processor, I stepped back.
Anna and I shared a glance, and we stared at the two huge bowls.
And we started laughing.
I just want to tell you: those bowls are huge.
And I ended up bagging 10 quarts worth. Full to the top of the zippers.
See? See?!
It's like wicked.
The thing is, am I the only one who hates the skin-shrinking-cracking acid that zucchini leaks after you peel it?
There's the recipe. I love it.
Mmmm. The first double batch I made, I chopped some of the only chocolate chips we had in the freezer --we're near out-- which happened to be dark-dark Ghirardelli. Melty. Beautiful. Yum.
The second batch I made, I put it all into muffins. And I didn't put chocolate chips in this time, at the request of the peoples.
You know what I love about my style of baking?
This picture I snapped just seconds after I put the scraped bowl in the sink and the muffin pans in the oven. My point? I'm one of those weird ones who clean and organize the space I'm working on inbetween everything I'm doing in the recipe. Seriously. I'm the only one in the family who does it.
Oh well.
Anna says I'm kind of psycho in that way.
I'll put that on my upcoming post about OCD. Hah.
So, I shall leave you with that, beacuse it's 9:52pm and Anna wants to get a bit of walking in.
All in all, a productive morning and afternoon.
Which, by the way, doesn't happen all the time. Heh heh.
Three dozen muffins. Three loaf pans of super-chocolatey stuff. and 9 quarts left in the freezer, all ready to thaw and use in the future.
Almost makes me tired and my fingertips shrink up just at the thought.

p.s. Sorry this post has nothing of substance besides flour, sugar, cinnamon and chocolate. Promise to make up for it soon. :]

Friday, August 27, 2010

want to, want to...

I really want to paint a poem.
{I've got things to do, music to print. Dangit.}
I really love music by Jars of Clay.
{Two Hands is playing right now. It's on my blog music playlist.}
Scratch the fact that fall is almost here.
{Although some leaves are golden or edged with orange, it was 80 today.}

I finished The Heart Mender.
{I really, really, really liked it.}

I'm working on finishing Love Mercy.
{It's amazing. Stirs up a compassion for humanity. Oh, to be Jesus' hands of Love --not just voice-- to those 'others'.}
In June, we put a paintbrush in her hands... and poured acrylics of different shades on a pallette. :)

It was really cool to see what techniques she seemed to try to remember. Leaning the brush this way and that, different strokes.
It turned out quite abstract, but lovely.
You can see the difference between my paintings and hers on the wall.... hers, much more refined.
She painted with oils (it's been since the late 1980's, I believe), and I paint with acrylics.
Though sometimes I wonder what it would be like to paint with oils.... :) Harder to clean up, that I know. Heheh.
Random note: I made potato-broccoli curry today. It was all eaten within 4 hours, the whole pot of it. I'm decent at cooking. I've worked my way up. ;)

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

wordless wednesday: a picnic.

thoughts. and oddities like coffee. ;)

Hello, dears.
The lovely Amy was having a link-up. Hopefully it's still open...looks like it is.
And you know what?
Coincidence has it that I just took coffee pictures yesterday.
I know you're all laughing right now, considering I'm like . . . the queen of coffee.
But also considering the facts that my camera has been lost since . . . . Friday? And that I haven't made any coffee since Friday (wow, those are weird coinciding facts there) because of Friday night's stomach bug...
I used Mom's nice Canon.
And except for a few focus issues in a few shots that I didn't notice until I loaded them into the computer, they're quite lovely. I mean, if I do say so myself. 'Tis a heavy camera. It's very different from mine.
Okay, so I broke out the caramel and pecans I told you about last time, the stuff you put on pancakes to convince the world to have peace and harmony and . . . perfect pancakes. :)
Okay, so this might not be too fair to some of you, if you're on a diet or are plain old restricted from certain stuff. (wince)
So. If we were having coffee together, as Amy puts it.... well, let's sit down.
Okay, I feel a little funny, considering some of my family reads this, and I'm sitting down with cyber friends to chat over coffee. Ahem.
Well, I'd tell you....
~That when I stepped outside this morning to visit Anna while she was nannying next door, it was chilly. I mean, you can almost smell the beginning of fall.
It's really nice, but then not.
It means time if going by.
I'm thrilled and sad thinking on that fact.
It's scary and yet . . . that's just what it is. Time is time.
Sorry to ramble.
~That I'm nearly finished with reading The Heart Mender, and after that I have to finish Love Mercy and after that I have Resurrection In May (another relatively new one by Lisa) to read . . .
~How've you been lately?
~Paint is just wonderful. Acrylic's my favorite, but I'm not practiced or too good at dealing with the colors red or green. Don't ask me why. Maybe it's because either/both of those colors are used during Christmas time, signifying the end of another year. Good, though potentially momentarily melancholy-inducing.

~I really miss blogging. And the ease with which some posts come. This isn't one of those easy ones. It's taking 2 days. Urgh.
~Mmmmm, how do you take your coffee? Say, at home or buying at a shop? And which place is your fav to buy it? Starbuck, Caribou, some random independent place?? Talk to me:)

~I'm thanking God for my blog playlist of music. Because my laptop's still in the fixer's and I'm using the computer the whole entire universe does and my laptop was just way cooler (laugh) and had a ton more newer/interesting music on it plus all my info for passwords and such to things that I just don't use every day. (i.e.: facebook, email)
So, although the music won't change until I get my baby back, I can enjoy music that's not in this home desktop... which is nice. Very nice.

~We didn't sing at the nursing home today because they mis-scheduled something and already had a Father (or do you call them a priest??) in the slot for speaking.
~Life can be just fascinating living with your grandmother.
I mean, really? Really? Just ask me. I can tell you something funny, something bittersweet, something that happens randomly.
Because let me tell you, life is random with Gram.
And just lately I've been seeing that this time is really precious; Donna, a friend from church, her mom passed on the other day.
Grammy is far from perfect...and she can speak a blue streak sometimes...but she can be so dang polite it's almost funny, the contrast. And she calls things like they are. And she just takes me for whatever I am. In one moment, I could be her most unfavorite person in the world, but ten minutes or an hour later if/when she's apologizing, she can be sweet and she's one of those people who don't force you into a mold of who/what they think you should be. Though she has told me I should and could be a masseuse (that's the word she used; I googled it, and thought about calling it by another name: massage therapy) or nurse. Heh heh.
~I can't believe the county fair is next week. It's crazy.
And, because Anna's wanting to have a wee bit of computer time, I'm finishing this off.
I can't wait to catch up on posting the paintings here that I've done since.....whenever my last "artistic endeavor" was last posted.

p.s. Don't forget to check out and enter my blog giveaway! I'm going to be doing it soon! Like, finalizing it! ;)

Monday, August 23, 2010

hey, you. *big smile*

Well, well, well.
If I do say so, I quite miss blogging.
And all of . . . well, whoever reads this.
So today I called Mr. Will, our friendly computer fixer. He said he put it together, with the inverter (not the mis-aforenamed interceptor or whatever I called it) and then he said something including the words display, damaged, and a whole week to even order a piece for something else not working correctly.
So tomorrow's a month since my laptop and the highly unfortunate incident.
It was . . . kind of hard to hear that; I mean, it would be one thing if it was one simple thing that just took a long time. But several things, unexpected??
Though I guess that's what life is full of, isn't it?
But I haven't been keeping track all this while; I just looked yesterday at the calender.
Most of this time, I've been enjoying vacation...the below is not all we did, just to add a note. ;)
and unpacking and doing a bit of laundry and cleaning the house and having splendid-wonderful times with friends
Ray, Anna, me, and Brookie
and some lovely ahem computer times with the home desktop and transfering from the dinosaur to the new one that we picked up last Monday. I'm quite adjusted to Windows 7, or what I know of it anyhow.
Meanwhile, this summer, Ben's been cultivating the garden and we've been getting some huge suckers. Such as this. Hehe. I believe some he planted are heirloom variety.
I've finally been reading The Heart Mender, which I had the funny pleasure of winning on one of Abbie's blog giveaways. I started it while on the vacation, and I'm about....75% through it. Loving it, too. Though his writing took a bit to get used to, and I sometimes find myself correcting his punctuation or phrasing once in an orange moon (hahaa), it's good.

And a bit of awful news--Wednesday, the younger sisters had a sort of stomach bug in the early morning hours. We never suspected it until Friday night when Anna and I had the same. Saturday and Sunday both Dad and Caleb had the joy of struggling with nausea, and over the weekend we heard that Ray and Brooke got the same. (they left our house Thursday afternoon)
But we're all well on the mend now, thank God.
I couldn't resist posting this. Going through picture folders and compiling some from Mom's camera and, that looks good.
Oh man, I've been stuck in a rut of British-like talk. At least, in my head. And this weird sentence structuring... me sorry.
Today we went and saw Nanny McPhee Returns. I absolutely loved the ending. Not to say I didn't enjoy the stuff preceding it, but the ending was my favorite. :)

It really stinks--my camera is lost at the moment.......dangit.
Sorry. 'Tis a random fact. But there's quite a few pictures on it that have yet to be loaded into a computer...

The picture above reminds me of the ones Anna made this morning.
Actually, the ones she made were a culinary explosion.
In the best way possible.
Caramel bits and pecan pieces were scattered on top while they cooked on the griddle in butter. Not too much butter. Just enough.
And it was good.
See, breakfast was extra special.
It was just siblings. Well, and Grammy dear:)
Yesterday evening, Dad and Mom went up north a wee ways for a night at a b&b--an anytime gift from their 25th anniversary. :)
So we maybe had fun.
Not like we never do, but it was funky to have two less people in the house.
We made chocolate pudding at, um, er, sometime after 10pm. With raspberries on top.
We watched Sherlock Holmes, but I daresay I didn't much like it at all really.
Then, to calm down with something not so masony...
We watched Ice Castles.
It was good.
I could've written half the movie, but oh well.

I shall say goodnight now.
I could go for a while of this right now: late summer day.....
I dunno. Having to sit in a computer chair does things to ya.
I feel for all those cubicle workers. :P
Goodnight, y'all.
Er.....Goodmorning, to most of you. :)
Dang, I've missed this. What, I do and don't know.... writing. Yep. Writing. Here.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Dear Everyone:

Yep, it's official. I miss everyone. Blog people, etc.
In short, cue my freakin' long sigh. The interceptor in my laptop that makes the LCD lights for the screen work is nearly kaput, I hear. Dangit. Mr Will's trying to locate an interceptor for me--not an easy feat, but will be accomplished supposedly.... So, today, Mom and Ben go to pick up our home desktop. My baby's still in the fixers. :(
Sigh again.

I'm at the library, and going to pick myself up an iced americano at the little town coffee shop when I'm done here. Which is 14 minutes ticking on the clock.
Sigh again.
Cleaning to do. Lovely day ahead of us. RayRay and Brookie are coming on Tuesday till Thursday....friends of ours, and we shall have the loveliest time!! That's one thing I can't wait for:)
After the past week or more and weekend full of warmth and humidity, Sunday after lunch yielded a lovely cold front moving in....
I can't wait to share about our vacation up north, and my coffee adventures (did you think I'd stay away from that topic?! ;) and.....can't wait to catch up on everyone's blogs. That is a mountain ever-growing.

Sincerely yours,

Thursday, August 5, 2010

chop suey, miracles, and farewell.

the day when a miracle happens always has to be when everyone's going out early in the day, snacking in the mid-morning, going on errands and mowing jobs in town, doesn't it?
i had lunch --chop suey-- nearly done at 11:40am. that is, in my book, the equivalent of a near-miracle. especially if it's just me throwing it together.
making chop suey really reminds me of making slop. both quite yummy, too.
just because it's so darn easy. open a few cans. dice an onion. cook meat/spinach.
bean sprouts. water chestnuts. diced onion. ground beef. soy sauce. rice. i mean, it's all lovely. :) soooo easy.
so easy, in fact, that i was able to go help coordinate ben's hanging of more canvases, and the spraying of the finish, and the rehanging.... dang, but i don't have a picture of it here right now. :(
i'm reading this book by tosca lee, and it's fascinating. really.
just because i won't be able to post anymore after tonight, until sometime after next week . . . . (our vacation up north with justin and sarah and eliyah, sunday to saturday--and by my next post, i'll have my laptop, prayerfully! yay!) . . . . here's a sneak peek at a rather large canvas that i find actually quite adorable.
'tis a new idea, how i painted it.
well, a new idea for me.
and it's a pretty lovely poem.
one i actually posted last december, randomly. :) what a hint that was! now you can go back in my archives --if you're daring enough-- and see what i'm talking about!! darn! hehe
inspired by looking at house beautiful mags from the library. ;)

so.....this is adieu. Until the week after this next.
and just know that God is good, and walnuts and Ghirardelli chocolate is really good together, and there is indeed a recipe coming up with tons of pictures like this......... :)
and farewell.

p.s. go check out my blog giveaway! :) oh, and please feel free to go back into posts unread and comment like crazy so i can check my email and see y'all's sweetness.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

wordless wednesday: inspiring

How's this for wordless?! ;) After that painting-filled place and all the painting sabbaticals I've unpurposefully taken, getting literally a ton and a half magazines of aforementioned stuffs has proven quite...
Beneficial. :) I painted 2 last night, both different from other stuff I've done, and I'm working on another right now. It's how I get that wanna-paint-a-wall-and-more passion out. ;) 

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

shattered screens and wonderful stuff like that.

'Kay, so I've really missed blogging my own pictures.
So, for sanity's sake, I put up with a sanity-risker of a jump: downloading my camera into one of the slowest existing desktops in the midwest. What a dinosaur. (well, not really, but this thing barely has 1 --or even half-- single gig of RAM!! urgh!!)
For the record, in my opinion, this book was my least favorite of Siri's writings.
Heck, if might be one of your favorites, like Heather dear, but me? Sorry.
Of course, her books published by Harrison House happen to be her best. I'm trying to figure out what pushed her into Bethany House publishers, and if they shoved her into a contract, molding her into what would sell the best. Etcetera, etcetera. Dangit.
And because I have the pictures at hand, I decided to show you the booboo. The actual visible crack is in the bottom right corner.
Ow. Ow. Ow.
Now, beware. These are all sooc, as I couldn't get Photoscape to work. Someone must've deleted it, and I've not the patience for downloading it anew.
And yes, the Puritan/period writing of the last few Siri books has influenced my writing a wee bit.
This is the book I read before Love's Pursuit. Set in the 14-1500's. The courtiers and the queen and such. Fascinating.
This thing! It's a freak of nature, and we never see them around here.
Weird, I know.
But I said ew and snapped the picture anyways.
And it was big.
Ew. *shudder*
Though, I have to say that this wasn't quite as gross as what we encountered with Heather today.
Anna, Heath, and I were on an innocent walk along our street in this sneaky early-August humidity, and suddenly, there's this weird high pitched sound --very abnormal, considering we're used to the buzz of freakin' cicadas by now-- and Heather stumbled, trying to not step on it, whatever it was. We looked back. The thing was saved. Not squished. But guess what it was? Hyper cicadas. Mating.

Let's switch subjects. Because, I mean, we walked away and I said gross and icky for about 5 minutes after that. It soooo does not need anything further said.
So. The funny thing? 
Anna, Rach, and I had been observing the caterpillar's progress up the fence from inside. In the kitchen. In the a/c comfort. We could actually see the thing from way inside out house. Bright and big, that's what.
So I remarked on that. How weird it was that we could see this big caterpillar from inside.
"I can't understand why you're so fascinated by that thing. I mean, I'd stare too --if it was a guy climbing the fence!"
I laughed.
That'll be all for now, but please remember: click on this and enter my blog giveaway!
I'm totally loving everyone's different stories, words, reasons...... so, keep them coming!
Above all other house/interior-deco mags, I heart House Beautiful. Not as expensive as Architectural Digest, and not as cluttered as Old House Interiors, but still sophisticated without being unattainable. :)

Hope y'all have a lovely Tuesday night/whenever this is when you read this.
Anna's got her mind set on watching Bright Star, so I think I'll run upstairs and finish reading She Walks In Beauty (siri mitchell, once again) . . . . Now, if she were watching The Young Victoria, that would be a much different story. ;) Gosh, that one's good.