Thursday, 2 April 2020

My favourite things . . .

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These are a few of my favourite things.  Maybe some of them are yours also!  A few of the things which catch my eye, inspire me, pluck at my heart strings, make me smile, intrigue me or that I just plain enjoy. I hope that they will do the same for you.   
 
 
 
Lilacs.  They smell so beautiful.  The very first apartment my first husband and I lived in was bordered all along one side of the drive with an old lilac hedge.  I brought armfuls into our little apartment when they were blooming. There is also a huge lilac bush adjacent to the front deck on mom's house. Mom used to love sitting in her rocker looking at them.  My sister often brought some into the house for her. I guess we all love lilacs. 
 
 
 
White pillow cases, especially if they are adorned with embroidery or lace.  They make me feel  like a princess. 
 
 
  
 
 
Children's poems.  I have always loved poetry. 
 
 
  
  
Thatched cottages.  Well any cottage really.  Did you know that there is a thatched playhouse on the grounds of Chirk Castle? 
 
 
  
 
 
Words of encouragement, quotes, etc.  I collect them. 
 
 

 
Tina dropped a few bits on the doorstep for us yesterday. Included was this lovely little plant pot filled with viola.  What a beautiful mood brightener and they can take the place of the Primerose which has now been replanted out in the garden. I guess I just love having something pretty to look a on the windowsil. 
 
 

 
White gardens  . . .  there was one amongst the many gardens at Sissinghurst Castle down south.  

 
 
  
 
 
Visiting National Trust Houses and Gardens.  The National Trust owns quite a few properties of historical value here in the UK. When families could no longer look after them they handed them over to the National Trust to care for.  These homes and gardens are national treasures and glimpses into another way of life.  If asked to pick a favourite, I could not because I always enjoy visiting all of them. 
 

 
 
 
Doll houses.  This one reminds me of the one that my childhood friend Susan Warburton had. We used to play with it for hours. 
 
 
  
 
 
 Polka dots.  On anything, but especially on clothing  . . . 


 
 
Ceramic pitchers and wash basins  . . .  I made one for my mom a long time ago. It is decorated with wild roses.  I also crocheted a special doily for it to sit on.  I know she loved them both . . . 
 
 
  
 
 
White, on white, on white  . . . such a beautiful combination. 
 
 
  
 
 
Spring time tree blossoms  . . . the tree by Doreen's old bungalow must be overflowing with them at the moment.  So beautiful  . . . 


 
 
I know I am repeating myself.  White lace curtains  . . . 
 
 
  
 
 
Pleats and ruffles  . . .  this style of clothing  . . .  bows . . .  natural fabrics  . . .  
 
 
 
 
 
Burt's Bees lip balm  . . .  I have a peppermint one at the moment  . . . 

 
I actually love all of Burt's Bees products . . . . 
 
 
 
  
 
Peonies  . . .  I once lived in a house that had a bed of peonies all along the back of it, and hollyhocks all along one side. It was beautiful  . . . 



  
 

Dolls  . . .  once when we went to Germany on a coach trip, the place where we were staying had a doll store almost next to the accomodation.  I spent many an hour looking through its windows  . . . 


 
 
Baroque Churches of Germany and Austria . . .  stunningly beautiful inside and out . . .   
 
 
And those are my favourite things for this week. 
 
How are you all doing.  I keep us all in my daily prayers.  I keep having to remind myself what day of the week it is.  They all seem to be running together  . . .
 
A thought to carry with you  . . . 
 
° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ •
•。★★ 。* 。
° 。 ° ˛˚˛ * _Π_____*。*˚
˚ ˛ •˛•˚ */______/~\。˚ ˚ ˛
˚ ˛ •˛• ˚ | 田田 |門 ★

 *
A beautiful day begins
with a beautiful mindset.
•。★★ 。* 。•。★★ 。* 。 
 
 
 
In The English Kitchen today, Shortribs a la Sauerbraten. 
 
 
Have a great Thursday, even if it is only being spent within the four walls of your home. Watch something inspiring, read something worthwhile.  Be happy. . We can do this . . . we have so much more to be hopeful for. Don't forget! 
 
═══════════ ღೋƸ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒღೋ ═══════════ ⊰✿░G░O░D⊰✿⊰L░O░V░E░S⊰✿⊰░Y░O░U░⊰✿
═══════════ ღೋƸ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒღೋ ═══════════   
 


And I do too!   
 

 
 


 
 



Wednesday, 1 April 2020

Wednesday things to think about . . .


I think one of the best things to come out of these past few weeks is that in many ways we have ben forced to slow down and reassess things in our lives.  Maybe that is not the case for everyone but it sure has been for me.  Certainly a lot of the things that I felt were important before have become not-so-important now.  Life has slowed down in many ways. 

I have pretty much shut down my food blog page on Facebook.  Mind you that was somewhat exacerbated by the fact that FB was pretty much marking all of my recipes as spam and removing them.  I am not sure if that was an individual reporting them as spam or if it was a bug with facebook, but that small thing has added quite a bit of time to my days, time better spent doing different things.  I used to spend several hours each day on that page, posting, responding to comments, etc.  I have this thing where I feel that anyone who makes a comment deserves a response and some days there were literally hundreds of comments to respond to, or questions to answer.  In all truth, I am somewhat relieved to not have to do that any more each morning. 


I have seen a great outpouring of love and help in the world, in my own community, which far overshadows any negative.  People are stepping up and reaching out to others in amazing ways.  Hundreds of thousands have volunteered to bring things to those who are not able to get out and do anything for themselves.  Neighbor is checking up on neighbor.  Families are re-connecting, slowing down . . .  spending time with each other in small and important ways, that they never had time for before. 

People are reaching out through the miracle of modern technology to uplift each other and put somehing positive into other's days.  Many famous singers and actors, etc. have taken the opportunity to put out sweet little videos, impromptu concerts, etc.  We all have extra time on our hands, and using that extra time to bless others is what I see happening, again and again.  

My neighbor asked me yesterday did I want some apples, she had too many.  I have lots of apples also, but I said to her, I do have plenty of apples but let me turn yours into something you and your son will enjoy.  Please. And so today I am baking them a crumble and Todd will leave it on their doorstep and ring the bell.  And they will be happy and I will be happy.  She has been buying loaves of bread and leaving them for us and not letting me pay for them. Now I can return the favour, which really makes me happy.  Small things.  

Yesterday I had a video call from someone at church.  We normally only speak on Sundays, but yesterday we had a chance to laugh together and share and I just know both of our days were brightened by it. Its not a bad thing and I have vowed now to contact at least one person each day to let them know I am thinking about them and share a few words together. 



Everything has become that much more precious. Nobody knows who is going to get out of this alive.  This virus is no respecter of persons. It doesn't care if you are rich or if you are poor, if you are a future king or a bin man. Nobody is safe from it. Nobody.  Not the young, nor the old, nor leaders of countries and governments.  To be sure that the elderly and those with underlying health problems are more at risk of dying if they catch it.  But anyone can catch it. We are all at risk. There is so much that we don't know about it.  A first this was really frightening, and I am not going to lie, I am still frightened, only a fool wouldn't be . . .  but the silver lining is that everything in my life has become much more meaningful.  Oh to be sure, I was always an appreciater of small things, but I am even more so now, and I know I am not alone in that.  



Hopefully we have all become less wasteful.  I know that I have become less wasteful.  I now think twice before I throw away something which is out of date.  Over these past few weeks I have eaten pasta that was ten years out of date, tuna and salmon that was out of date, tinned tomatoes that were out of date, out of date beans,  and the list goes on.  I am beginning to think that there is a conspiracy behind sell by/best by dates that makes us buy more instead of using what we already have.  Oh, I know  . . .  they do it  to protect themselves, but the facts are, if it smells okay, the colour is okay, the can isn't bulging, it is probably safe to eat.  It might not taste at its best, but you can still use it and it will go great in a casserole.  This applies to loads of things.  Even freezer burnt meat. 





This has been a time to be grateful and to express gratitude.  For the helpers, for the health care system, for each other, for out of date salmon that still makes a great salmon loaf,  for extra hours to explore our talents and to finish unfinished projects, for more time to connect with the things that matter most. 

No, its not all bad.  For sure I will be happy when it is all over and when things hopefully get back to normal, but I do hope that some of the things I have learnt in the process will be things that I never forget and will become habitual.  It only takes 21 days for something to become a habit, 3 weeks . . . and we all certainly have 21 days  . . .
  

A though to carry with you  . . . 

° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ •
•。★★ 。* 。
° 。 ° ˛˚˛ * _Π_____*。*˚
˚ ˛ •˛•˚ */______/~\。˚ ˚ ˛
˚ ˛ •˛• ˚ | 田田 |門 ★

 *
We are each of us angels
with only one wing
and we can only fly by
embracing on another.
~Luciano de Crescenzo•。★★ 。* 。
° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ •° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ • 


Roasted Pears with Honey, Cinnamon & Cardamom 


Diamonds from dust.  I had a bag of really hard pears so I roasted them with some honey, cinnamon and cardamom for the win!  In the English Kitchen today.

Have a wonderful Wednesday.  Stay home and stay safe and stay healthy.  Be the reason someone smiles today. Don't forget! 

═══════════ ღೋƸ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒღೋ ═══════════ ⊰✿░G░O░D⊰✿⊰L░O░V░E░S⊰✿⊰░Y░O░U░⊰✿
═══════════ ღೋƸ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒღೋ ═══════════   
 

  And I do too!! 

 




Tuesday, 31 March 2020

The Simple Woman's Daybook . . .

 

 FOR TODAY, March 31, 2020 


Outside my window...
Its fully light out and I am just starting this daybook when I am normally finishing it.  Darn you time change! LOL  Is anyone else having a difficult time remembering what day of the week it is?? 

I am thinking ... 
Today is the day my kids should have begun their journey over to see us. Trying hard not to be bummed about that, but hopefully the trip still can be made.  They have to use their tickets before the end of the year.  I hope and pray that they can.  It took Eileen so long to save up all that money. I would hate for her to lose it all.  Hoping and praying that this lock down doesn't last too long, but prepared for the long haul. 

I am thankful for ...
My God and my Saviour, prayer, a humble heart, an open mind, family, friends, modern technology, the NHS, our Government.  We can do this.  

In the Kitchen ...  

Anything Hash & Perfectly Poached Eggs 

Anything Hash with Perfectly Poached Eggs.  My  blood sugars have been up. Its hard a challenge to control them when you are cooking on food storage. Anyways, I made a hash using one leftover baked potato, some swede (rutabaga), broccoli stems, carrots, a small onion. . . . topped with a poached egg, this was our supper yesterday. 

On my "to Cook" list ... 

Food 52  Kindred's Milk Bread.  

Good to Know ...  

  
I am creating ... 
 

Red Ted Art. Paddington Bear  using Toilet Roll inserts.  

Crafts on Sea.  Free colouring Pages for Adults.  

   

The Body Shop.  Upcycled Foosball Table. 

  

Red Ted Art.  Easy Fidget Spinners.


   
 

Priscillas.  This is so pretty.  

I am reading ...  

Woman of Clay, by Linda Caddick 


This vivid story of love triumphing over human weakness plunges you into a vibrant drama in 1st century Israel.

 "In her mind’s eye, she saw herself cowering as the blur of that first stone hurtled towards her, its keen edge cutting into the soft flesh of her neck. Then another, striking her on the temple with a head-splitting blow, stones slamming into her from every direction. She felt the terror of death and heard her own screams inside her head. “God, have mercy on me,” she whimpered."

Self-deception, passion, and turmoil threaten to destroy everything Shana holds dear, even her own life. Driven by a burning quest for happiness, she sacrifices the love of a good man to satisfy a need she can't identify, paying a high price for the legacy of her father's rejection.

A shocking face-to-face encounter with a controversial young rabbi reveals the truth. He claims her heart and gives his life in exchange, but still she must suffer the consequences of her choices. A cruel twist of fate presents her with a final test - her will or God's will? Love requires a sacrifice, but can all she has lost ever be restored?

From bestselling biblical fiction author Linda Caddick, this poignant account of a woman’s journey from brokenness to healing through redeeming love, provides an enlightening, true-to-life experience of history during the time of Jesus, that illustrates the bible in a new way.

I am really enjoying this.


Dreaming About ... 


Hobbit houses  . . . 


 
Foxes and pintucks  . . . 
 
 
  
(source
 
 
Tabby's in scarves . . . 


(source)  
 
 
Dogs in jaunty caps  . . . 


 
 
Linen  . . .  ribbons . . .  buttons and lace edging  . . .   
 
 
Makes me smile ... 
 
 
Jake reading to his guinea pigs. 
 
 
Something to watch ... 
 
  
 
Unorthodox on Netflix. Compelling . . . 


A thought to carry with you  ... 

° * 。 • ˚ ˚ ˛ ˚ ˛ •
•。★★ 。* 。
° 。 ° ˛˚˛ * _Π_____*。*˚
˚ ˛ •˛•˚ */______/~\。˚ ˚ ˛
˚ ˛ •˛• ˚ | 田田 |門 ★

 *
For He shall give His angels
charge over there,
To keep thee in all thy ways.
~Psalm 91:11•。★★ 。* 。 
 
 
Corners of my kingdom ... 
 
 
Ghost town on the Underground, London.  Millions work from home. This space is usually crammed to the hilt with people.  Happy that people are doing what they should do. 
 
 
And that's my daybook for this week!



  ⋱ ⋮ ⋰
⋯ ◯ ⋯ Take time to enjoy the small *´¯`.¸¸.☆

  ⋰ ⋮ ⋱ blessings in life.*´¯`.¸¸.☆ 




✿¸.•*¨`*•..✿✿¸.•*¨`*•..✿ ✿¸.•*¨`*•..¸✿ ✿¸.•*¨`*•..¸✿ ✿¸.• ╬♥═╬╬═♥=╬╬═♥╬╬═♥╬╬═♥=╬╬♥═╬♥╬╬═♥╬╬═♥=╬╬♥
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Have a beautiful day!  Don't forget!   


═══════════ ღೋƸ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒღೋ ═══════════ ⊰✿░G░O░D⊰✿⊰L░O░V░E░S⊰✿⊰░Y░O░U░⊰✿
═══════════ ღೋƸ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒღೋ ═══════════   
 


And I do too!