Wednesday 18 January 2017

My favourite things . . .


I know I normally do this on a Thursday, but I will be at the cancer hospital tomorrow so I thought I would do it today.  A few of my favourite things  . . .


 I like my dreams.  Most of the time.  I dream a lot about my children and in my dreams I solve all of the problems with I don't seem to be able to solve in real life.  We talk things over.  All the conversations I have never had the opportunity to have in reality get spoken and hashed out in my dreams.  For instance last night I was with my youngest daughter and her two babies were there and we were talking as if there was nothing wrong and as if there was no wall between us.  There was a wall, but it was a planning wall and I had all these things written on the wall and we were hashing it out.   I woke up feeling positive and good about things.  The reality is far different from that and I have come to the point now where I recognise that I will probably never see a solution to whatever is wrong between us in this lifetime, or between her younger brother and I either . . .  and I have become reconciled to that fact.  It is what it is, but in my dreams no walls or barriers exist.  Perhaps these are glimpses of Heaven.  I like to believe that they are.  Little glimpses of Heaven are another favourite thing.   


I hope this doesn't seem like I am bragging and forgive me if it does, but I just can't help but mark this occasion here on my blog where I put all of my thoughts, failures and successes.   About a year or so ago, a gentleman named Coleman Andrews wrote me an e-mail telling me he was writing a new cookbook on British cooking and he was keen to include my Apple Dumplings recipe.  He said that it was the best one he had tried.  I said yes, sure he could.  He promised to give me credit for it.   You can't get much better than that really and lo and behold he did.   Here it is!  Being mentioned in a cookbook written by a best selling author who is also a winner of not one but eight James Beard Awards has to be one of my favourite things ever!  I think the phrase "Tickled Pink" covers it.  And to be honest, it really is one of my favourite recipes ever . . . 

Old Fashioned Apple Dumplings.   Another one of my favourite things.  Why?  Because they are like a little apple pie just for you and a lot easier to make than an apple pie actually.  All you have to do is peel and apple, roll it in lemon juice and cinnamon sugar and plunk it on a square of pastry, fillit with butter and brown sugar and pull the pastry up to cover it.   You don't even have to make it look pretty like I did, just cover the apple.  Then you pour over a delicious sauce and bake.   Scrumptious doesn't begin to cover it.  Apple Dumplings with some cream.   Another one of my favourite things, for what is ice cream, but  . . .  frozen cream.  ☺

I just love my Susan Branch Calendars.  I have this one and the little planner one and in the past I have had the desk blotter.   I have to say that Susan Branch is one of my favorite things, and yes I know she is a person and not a thing.   I fell in love with Susan's work back in the 1980's when she used to have an illustrated recipe in Country Living magazine every month.  And then I bought her first book,  Heart of the Home.  Loved it.   I bought her little books, cards, etc.   Whenever I found something of hers I bought it because I just loved everything she produced with her wealth of talent.   Then came the internet and I discovered her Blog/webpage and I fell in love with her all over again.  If you have never read her blog you really need to.  It is delightful.  I often go back and read her posts over and over again.  Why do I love her so much?  Why is she one of my favourite things?  Because she is real, she is genuine,  and she is just like one of us.  The way she writes, they are words I could have written.  She pens my thoughts and draws my pictures.  I just think she is the real deal and I love her to bits for it and for sharing herself so generously with the world.  She has a gift, a true gift and she is not selfish with it.  That's what gifts are for.  To share.

I love our little fish tank.  I could sit and watch the fish in it for hours.   I never thought that fish could have individual personalities, but they do.  They play and they have their quiet moments.  They have their energy rushes and their lulls.   I think swimming in water like they do must be akin to being able to fly.  They soar through the tank the same way that birds soar through the sky.  Oh to soar . . .  if I could soar that would also be one of my favourite things.  The closest I have ever come to is is to fly on a loaf of bread in a dream, and we all know now that my dreams are  . . .  favourite things.

 I love looking at house plans and dreaming about the kind of house I would have if only, if only  . . . I think this one is called Crabapple Cottage.  And quite the cottage it is.  I think it is quite gorgeous.  Not too big and not too small.  With a bit of a porch that you could sit on in your rocking chair  and enjoy on warm summer days along with your ice cold glass of lemonade having conversations with Todd . . .  and watching the world walk by, Mitzie laying by our feet.

There's that dreaming again!!

 I got this little book for 2017.  It is a daily book, filled with thoughts on the atonement and I am just getting so much from it.   I love books like this.  For instance here was the thought for yesterday . . .

"A true faith in Christ is more than just knowing about Him or even believing He is divine.  It is knowing that His Atonement is real, that its purpose is to transform us, snd that it will be available as long as that perfecting process takes.  We have a Saviour who covers us, a Reedemer who changes us,  and a Good Shepherd who is willing to go in search of us again and again . . . continuously."
~Brad Wilcox

Being able to start each day with an inspiring thought about the Saviour's atonement is one of my favourite things. 


I am not a Catholic by faith but my father is.  When we were in Lourdes a few years back I bought him a rosary.   I recently bought myself a rosary also.  I love my rosary.  I hold it in my hands sometimes when I am praying and run my fingers over the cross holding the Saviour.   The pearls start off cold but then warm up as I pray, the cross helping me to focus and to commune with the Saviour in a very meaningful way.  That is not to say that my prayers without the rosary in my hands are not meaningful . . .  God hears all of our prayers and they all mean something to Him, and He is always listening . . .  I only mean to say that I feel a sense of special comfort in my prayers when I am holding it.  I am not sure where this comfort comes from.  Perhaps it is in knowing that generations and generations of my family have prayed in the same way and perhaps I can feel the power of all of those prayers gliding up towards the heavens, towards our Heavenly Home.  Perhaps it helps me to feel a part of something that is eternal and familial all at the same time.  The Gospel is about the family and the eternal aspect of belonging to one.  Perhaps the sense of comfort I get from holding this rosary is the sense of family that I get when I am holding it in my hands  . . .
And with that I will leave you with a thought for today  . . . 

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

 *.˛.° ˛°. . 
˛*Love grows best in little houses, with fewer walls to separate.
            Where you eat and sleep so close together, you can't help but communicate.
                  And if we had more room between us, think 
                         of all we would miss . . . •。★★ 。* 。.° * 。

 Spiritual Enlightenment


 In The English Kitchen today . . .  Bacon BBQ Chicken.  This is so simple that even a child can make it.  No kidding!  And to top it off its also mightly delicious!

 May the day ahead be filled with raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens and a few of YOUR favourite things.  Don't forget!

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

And I do too!


  1. Oh dear I left the coment for a minute came back and it had gone !...I am so pleased that your recipe has been included in that prestigious book...hopefully it will lead to further success, that would be an answer to prayer...perhaps a publisher will ask you to write a cookery destroy seller ...fame at last...( that is what happened to my sister Sarah, Oxford Press contacted her and asked her to write a children's nursery rhyme book with hand signs on how to do the actions, it's called Round and Round the was a best seller for many years and has been republished dozens of times there are now four books out but that first one has always been our favourite, it didn't make her rich by any means but she did get good royalties the first few years ). Anyway congratulations. I am going now will be back but I don't want to lose this again and there's someone at the door

  2. Marie I am back ! Problem was my car would not start yesterday late afternoon I called the RAC they said someone would be with me by 10.30 he arrived within 20 mins. It wasn't much just the back door had not been closed properly and it had frozen the locks !!...anyway it's all sorted out....I hope all will go well with the hospital visit tomorrow, like you I am a bit concerned about Todd being able to drive back and forth every day, they do get extreemly tired after the treatment.....but no doubt God will provide the answers I am sure...Now I have a laugh for you. As you might remember I went to London on Monday to a funeral of an old friend of Sarah' there,,,used the disabled entrance into the lift with a lady who was going to work you know disabled people are all a bit mad so wouldn't know how to work a lift !....she hit the button up it went...about a foot...stopped and so it went she called to someone to get the key to winch it up...coudnt be found, by now I had worked out that if they left the said lift for 2/3 mins it went up by another the end they agreed to try this and it worked it ONLY took 20 mins to get up into the church a few feet above us...then the service..going out..I looked at lift the same lady dashed forward and said NO, CANT USE LIFT...I saiid oh, how m I going to get down the steps ? comes the's ok she said, The undertakers are going to carry you out !!!!.....well Marie I nearly fell out my chair laughing at the thought!! It is a bit early to be carried out of church by the the end I said I would try with my nieces help to go down the truth I could do it easily but as I had used the lift going up I thought it would have looked bad if I had just jumped and dashed down the steps so I ended up going down with a great deal of holding on to said niece and handrail with the undertakers carrying my wheelchair down behind me.....but did you ever, can you just visualise it...when I got to the bottom of steps I looked at dear Winifred's coffin in the hearse and said to her I hope your getting a good laugh at all there you are a laugh to start your day...I am now going to do some shopping when Mary comes over its nice and sunny but cold here....have a lovely day basking in your glory ! Xxxx

  3. Congratulations on having your recipe published. Apple dumplings are so good ! Hope your day goes well and you find something special in it. Prayers for a safe journey tomorrow for the treatments.

  4. HOORAY and congrats on the published recipe, my friend... so thrilled for you! Your pearl Rosary is lovely! Me being a Catholic girl, I love praying the Rosary, and have great affinity for prayer to the Virgin Mary! I seem to have a Rosary collection started, as I've gathered several over the years now. A pink crystal one is my most favorite. ;) Prayers for Todd tomorrow, for you both... ((LOVE & HUGS))

  5. I can't wait for you to see my next appropriate for today:)


    It is a lovely thing to see your name in print w/ your recipe..well well well deserved:)

    Thinking of you and Mr T..
    a lot.

    I have my mom's rosary..cannot tell you how often I saw them in her hands..My daughter gave me a special one also..and a gardenbuddy freind..I have my own from my first communion..sounds's not..just telling you:)

  6. Hi Marie...
    I too struggle with a relationship with my youngest daughter...
    She is the mother of our precious granddaughter Miss V♥️
    I too solve all the problems in my my mind...always in my thoughts.
    I do so enjoy your honesty on your tell things like it is, and I truly admire that.
    Bravo on the recipe in print!!
    enjoy the rest of your week...
    Linda :o)

  7. Hey, congrats on the recipe. Fabulous endorsement, will be read by many and I bet your blog traffic will increase. Keep praying the rosary Marie, even if it is your own prayer, you will feel God's peace.

  8. Hi Marie. Lots and lots of congratulations for you recipe!!
    Good luck for today, I'll be thinking of you both. Lots of love xxx

  9. Oh Sybil, thank you so much for the smile. How I love you. You just have to laugh at these things don't you? It beats the heck out of the alternative! oxox

    Thanks so much Pam! Very much appreciated! xoxo

    Thanks Tracy! Your pink crystal rosary sounds beautiful. I shall look for one. I also saw a black marcasite (sp) that I have fallen in love with.xoxo

    Thanks Mnique, your thoughts mean the world to me. Not bragging about your rosary, but sharing something special and I appreciate it so much! xoxo

    Linda, i shall keep you and your daughter in my prayers! Every little helps! God bless! xoxo

    Thanks Angharad! So appreciated. I really needed the strong arm of the Lord this morning on our drive, but more about that later! xoxo

  10. Thanks very much Kate, is it very much appreciated! xoxo

  11. Hope everything goes well today. Congratulations on the apple dumplings.

  12. I have a thought about your dreams. Perhaps, the dreams mean that you will be able to heal your relationship with your children. It maybe a way of receiving a message of hope that it may happen in this life. I pray for you that it will! I was so excited that you apple dumpling recipe was put in a book by a famous author; that is just so awesome. I must ry it!
    I will have to look up Susan Branch writing. However, I can't imagine enjoying her work more than yours. I think you are immensely talented.
    I love to watch fish too. We had a tank years ago. Now I must watch them when we go to my husband's cardiology office.
    I love the same kind of home you do. I would love a front porch that I could sit on with my hubby with our sweet Sammy at our feet. It's a true dream I would love to live.
    I love reading about the Atonement; your book looks like a great one. I think it is sweet that the rosary provides sweet feeling for you!
    Blessings, prayers and hugs for you~

  13. Thanks LeAnn! I think we are very much birds of a feather. xoxo


Your comments mean the world to me, and while I may not be able to address each one individually, each one is important to me and each one counts. Thanks so much!