Friday, October 22, 2010

What a waste of time...







Last night I sliced up 3 pounds of limes in the food processor so the slices would be super thin, covered them with water to soak overnight, because that's what the instructions say to do. Today I gathered all my jam making equipment together, bought another case of jelly jars and started the cooking process. I even heated the sugar before adding it to the already boiling lime/water mixture, so it will dissolve easily. After boiling the required 12 minutes I put a tablespoon on a frozen plate to check the gel consistency. Yes, it gelled properly, so I tasted the cooled marmalade. YUCK! It was so bitter. So I thought how can I correct this? Further search on the internet showed another recipe that suggested using hot chilies with the lime mixture, so I added some dried chilies (that I had dried from the garden this summer). Still tastes bad, only now it tastes bitter and too hot. Not a good flavor at all.
So, the bottom line is I spent the entire morning making something that is going in the trash.
Disappointment.................

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Delight




















A recent episode of Oprah got me thinking...do my children and grandchildren see the joy in my eyes when I see them? Do they know they are delightful to me? Not always on my part and they are not always "delightful", but I want them to remember how much joy they have brought to my life after I am gone and certainly know NOW how much I enjoy their presence in my life. My friends certainly know about the pleasure I get after a visit from my kids and grandkids. I can’t stop talking about the funny things they do and say.
Sometimes, I go through the routine of babysitting or helping out and not always with joy. This is a problem for me because I do love each moment of spending time with my family. It is mostly because it is tiring to chase after 4-7 little ones, 8 and under, and I have become used to doing my own thing for a while.
My favorite moments are the one on one conversations. It can be talking with my grandson about a video game or my son about a job opportunity. It can be asking my daughter-in-law her advise on my exercise program or my granddaughter about her Halloween costume. Putting the little ones to bed and hearing their prayers is precious. I am overwhelmed with pride and joy and when I hear my sons "talking shop" with their dad about their common profession...dentistry. I love to ask my son, the chef, for cooking advise. To see my sons as fathers is pure "DELIGHT"! All these moments create a loving memory for me and I hope for them as well.
My favorite thing to do with my grandchildren is to teach them about something I love. I started out with gardening. Do you know how many things you can teach a child when you teach them to garden? There is the seed growing into food (obviously), but then there are the insects, good and bad for the garden, the birds and rats (always bad for the garden), the sun, the rain and God. Then there are the recipes of how to prepare the food from the garden and the list goes on and on. I have spent countless hours in the garden with my grandchildren and we have always had a good time. We have our favorite things to talk about, like “Mr. Rat” or the tomato worms. My one grandson loves to pick the worms off the plants and then care for them. Do you know they morph into a beautiful moth? Also, the worms that are attracted to fennel become Black Swallowtail butterflies! What a beautiful lesson they learn while I get the joy of spending time with them!
My sister just spent 4 days with her 2 sons, their wives/girlfriends and her granddaughter. She had “delight” in her voice when she spoke about Q, her 2-year-old granddaughter.
Through the eyes of these children we are reminded of how simple life can be and how much joy we can bring to others. So go out there and be delightful, and let people know how much happiness they bring into your life.
Delight…when do you see true delight in someone’s eyes?
My son Kyle’s recent post on his blog was that his dad just celebrated his 60th birthday and he realized that he might have only 25 years left with him. Odd thought, but we hope it is a little longer than that. My mom just celebrated her 85th birthday and is living well and Paul’s grandmother died 2 years ago at the age of 99! So we have longevity in our families. Don’t worry, Kyle, we plan on being around for a while and hopefully having more delightful moments with all of you.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Who Inspires You?


I’ve been thinking a lot lately about who inspires me. There are the obvious choices…my parents, Mother Teresa, Lady Diana Spencer, certain people in the media; then there are the ones who go about their daily life and don’t even know they inspire me. This past weekend we celebrated my husband’s 60th birthday and one of our sons and daughter-in-law came to visit, with our three adorable grandchildren. My daughter-in-law’s parents were also in town so we got to spend an afternoon with Molly’s parents. Pam is the subject of my latest inspiration. She has raised 4 children to be fantastic adults…my daughter-in-law, Molly, being #1 in my mind. Pam is not only a great mom; she is funny, faithful, and talented. She is only a year younger than me so I consider her my peer, for sure. Pam and I have always gotten along great and we seem to have the same sense of humor, which is based on teasing those we love, in a kind way. She has had her share of health issues these last few years and lost her mom recently after a long battle with Parkinson’s and numerous other ailments. She has always been very active in her church and teaches and leads young women to be better people, people like Pam. As some of you might know, this stage of life can be difficult…having your kids live all over the world, caring for aging parents, the empty nest, adjusting to being a “mother-in-law” and grandmother, dealing with the changes in our bodies, including weight gain and mood swings, etc., etc. But, being the frivolous person that I am…here is how she inspired me this weekend. She arrived here looking fantastic. She was fit, fun and beautiful. Pam is always smiling and always kind. I need to be more like Pam. She has recently lost a bunch of weight and has maintained it and looks great. Weight Watcher’s was her choice of eating plans and the gym is where she chooses to exercise. She even holds a weight lifting title at her gym. So, yesterday I went and rejoined the gym where I used to belong. I have started writing down what I eat and try to eat smaller portions. I went to the gym today and it felt so good to do some light weightlifting for legs and arms and walk on the treadmill. I’m going to start gradually and build up to more weight and more time on the treadmill. I want to be like Pam…healthy, happy and fit.

Who inspires you? I think this might be my topic for a while.

Random thoughts………..

Monday, October 11, 2010

Random weekend





My 3rd son, Evan, has been through lot lately and it is so great to see him back to his joyful self.
My husband celebrated his 60th birthday today and it is hard to believe I have known him for nearly four decades. We celebrated very casually with a family dinner at a spaghetti "diner" style restaurant with close family. Although not all our kids could be there , it was great to have 1/2 the kids and all the grandkids with us, my mom, plus my sister, her husband, and our nephew and his girlfriend.
This was a special weekend because not only did we enjoy our grandchildren but we celebrated the birth of a dear friends first granddaughter. What a joy it is to welcome a new life and to see the hope and joy and in a new parent's heart.
Random thoughts for random days...

changing the blog


I'm thinking of starting a blog...random thoughts. My mind has been working overtime lately and I need to express my thoughts and ideas somewhere. Would you care what I was thinking?