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June 29, 2012

Largest tax increase in the world...

Yesterday was a day of history.  Not the kind of history I'm proud of...sadly.  In America, the healthcare reform has passed and with that the largest tax increase in the world!  As you may know, there will also be penalties if you don't buy health insurance now and the IRS will be collecting your hard earned $ if you choose not to do what they command!!!  I wish this was still the land of the free....and we were able to make our own decisions. 

I do not have a doctor.  I haven't gone to the doctor in over 2 years now (if one doesn't go every 2 years minimum, they take you off their list of patients, and you will have to try to find a new doctor), since I had my appendix out...  Yet, I do have health insurance.  What a waste of money, though!  I eat a healthy diet, exercise and do not surround myself with cigarette smoke or other health hazards and do not need to visit the doctor.  If I am sick, I rest in bed...drink hot tea and nurse myself back to health, with God's help.  God is the only real doctor anyhow.

June 22, 2012

My parent's mimosa tree...

The mimosa tree has blooms that so fragrant and sweet, like a rose.  And the greens gently fold up in the evening.  My girls ♥ to climb this poor tree that grows in my parent's front yard.  Olivia has a large scratch down her leg from her attempt to climb last week. 
 They almost look like fireworks.
I use this large slice of an old oak tree to do many things...I laid our harvest of cilantro, beets, potatoes and lettuce on it earlier this week and now, I'm gathering coriander seeds (which is what you get when you let your cilantro flower and then dry)...I will grind up most of them using this mortar and pestle.  Today, I added them to a pot of beans.

(a part of photo Friday:  this week's theme is wood)

June 20, 2012

Garden haul today...

Rob is working in the garden...he was hoeing and accidentally upturned 6 red potatoes that were near the surface.  I like that one that looks a bit like a peach! 
We have lots of lettuce, here is some romaine (we got the Rocky Top Lettuce Mix from Baker Creek when we were in Missouri last June, unfortunately, those are the only seeds from there that are really thriving), lots of cilantro which self-seeded from last summer, 2 golden beets and one teeny green tomato that I accidentally plucked off while pulling some weed that was growing around that tomato plant.
 
I went to the farmer's market at Nativity school in Pleasant Ridge and got these beautiful yellow and red tomatoes...so full of flavor!  We made gazpacho.  I left the skins on the tomatoes and it turned out just fine!  ♥

June 18, 2012

Our Father

Dad and me just 2 weeks ago ♥ 
We say this prayer every day before we eat lunch:
Our Father who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy name.
Thy kingdom come.
Thy will be done
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our debts,
as we forgive our debtors,
and lead us not into temptation, 
but deliver us from the evil one.
God is the Father of all...and we have our earthly fathers. Yesterday we got to spend a little time with my dad and with Rob's dad.  And of course, Hannah and Olivia spent time with my dear husband, their dad, Rob.  A little basketball...
 
In the shade of a maple tree...

June 13, 2012

A new book and a little yarn...

I just bought the book, Yia Yia and the Prosphoron, and think it's wonderful.  "Yia Yia" means Grandma in Greek.  The Grandma in this story puts down her knitting on Saturday to make the holy bread (we call it "prosphora") that is used in church.  The illustrations are very well done...and to be honest, I'm very picky because I am an artist.  It's also very special because the main character reminds me of my own mom!  ♥  She has been baking prosphora for about 30 years.  I have helped her out a little when I was younger, but this a few months ago I started making it on my own.

June 11, 2012

A little baby shower ♥

My sister, Mary, and her husband, Andrey, who live in Canada met us at Lake Erie this past week...they are expecting their first baby August 7th.  My parents and all my sisters and all the grandchildren stayed in a house right on the lake...16 of us, ages 67, 61, 39, 37, 34, 33, 31, 31, 27, 10, 9, 6, 4, 2, 2, 5 months and one on the way.  So Sunday after church, we had a little baby shower...
We made her name (to hang on the wall in her room) as a gift for their baby girl...I started cutting out the letters on the scroll saw in our garage, and then it started acting funny, so Rob checked it out, all that vibration had stripped out a screw, so he ran to the hardware store and got a new one, replaced it and meanwhile I was inside decorating cupcakes and stuff...Rob finished it.  Then Rob, Hannah, Olivia and I sat on the front porch and painted each letter pink. 
She got a Boppy pillow with cherries on it from Marina and her Godson, Michael.  Hannah took notes of who gave what gifts, so Mary can write "thank you" notes.

I have a list of the gifts that we got when I was expecting Hannah, in her baby book, we still look back at that and remember all those kind and generous people.  ♥
 My 2 year old niece, Natalia, has a gift for Aunt Mary.
My parents were there, too...my father has been doing pretty well, lately.  It must be everyone's prayers.  ♥  My mom has to help him a lot, the evenings are most difficult, as that's when the Parkinson's dyskinesia sets in the worse.  She ends up feeding him dinner most nights, massaging his legs, that twist and turn, often kicking her, and trying to get him comfortable, but they are managing.  Lately, Dad likes to watch the Andy Griffith show on Netflix.  He still loves to eat sweets, too, and had quite a few at the baby shower.
 Paul and Eugene...some cool teenagers who come to our church!!!
Paul's mom, Luba, with Mary...and the best picture of her baby bump so far.  Kathy gave her that yellow chewbeads necklace, it is a teething necklace! Isn't that so fashionable and cool?
Opening more gifts...
A snowsuit...I know she'll need that in Canada in the winter!
Cupcakes, fresh fruit and baby carriage cookies that my sister, Susanna, made...
The back of a quilt that Susanna made...and below, you can see the front!
Bethany knit her a very soft white hat...everyone wanted to feel it.
Thank you to everyone for your prayers as my sister and her husband wait to welcome their baby, Elizabeth into this world!

June 6, 2012

Lake Erie


"Sword" fighting with giggles as the sun set on Lake Erie.  We're here for a vacation with my parents and all my sisters and their children...
We rented a surrey (I just looked it up and learned from wikipedia that it is named such because it was first built in Surrey, England, it was introduced in 1872 to the United States) for $15/hour.  And the yellow tandem bike was just $5/hour.
 Just enough seats for everyone...two tables pushed together!
We made cake pops yesterday.  My sister, Mary, gave Olivia & Hannah a birthday present to share...one of the coolest things I've ever seen:  a cake pop maker!!!  It's like waffle iron.  Below is a picture of Natalia eating one of the lemon zest pops we made...
A firefly...up close, for those of you who live west of Kansas...I didn't know they weren't everywhere, I thought they just came out as the summer came, varieties

June 1, 2012

Evening light...

Have you noticed the evening fireflies?  Last night, it rained at about 9 pm (it had been about 2 weeks since we had rain, so we were very glad for it, our garden needed it).  It thundered and there was lightning.  I went outside to check on Nutmeg (the chicken) and noticed that the fireflies were flying around our backyard and lighting up, yes...in the rain!  We saw fireflies for the first time in 2012 just last week.  It's not easy to capture them in a photo.
"O Gladsome Light of the holy glory of the immortal, heavenly, holy, blessed Father, O Jesus Christ: we that come to the setting of the sun, when we behold the evening light, praise Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, God. Meet it is for Thee at all times to be praised with gladsome voices, O Son of God, Giver of life; wherefore the world doth glorify Thee."