By the Sea Hodgepodge

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1. “The cure for anything is salt water-tears, sweat, or the sea.” (Isak Dinesan) Would you agree? Of the three, which has ‘cured’ you most recently?

I know I enjoy a walk along the seashore and find it refreshing and exhilarating. In the last 12 days I’ve enjoyed several days at the beach. A beach house rental, a beach side wedding, a walk on the pier at Huntington Beach, breakfast on the beach at the Beachcomber in Crystal Cove. I marveled at the waves, the ebb and flow, the tides, the power of the sea. Most of all I was in awe of our God who keeps all of this under control.

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2. What’s something you can’t eat without salt? Do you normally salt your food a lot, a little, or not at all?

I do not like oatmeal when it’s not salted in the cooking process. I enjoy salt to enhance the taste of most anything. I really enjoy salted sunflower seeds. When I was in the first or second grade I was hospitalized because of a kidney infection. My salt intake was totally restricted and I had to drink several glasses of water a day. A Sunday tradition in my family was to stop by a street vendor who sold sunflower seeds across the street from our church. They sold the seeds in small brown paper sacks. Plain, salted, and pumpkin seeds, too. We made a mess as a family enjoying those seeds on a Sunday afternoon. It was torture for me when I couldn’t enjoy those seeds on the Sundays during my infection.

3. Sands of time, bury your head in the sand, built on sand, or draw a line in the sand…which sandy phrase could best be applied to something in your life right now? 

I can typically be a bury your head in the sand person but lately I’m ready to draw a line in the sand especially when it comes to being politically correct. The major thing that I will not stay silent on is the killing of unborn babies. This is not a good thing for women and I think too many are haunted by this act that they have been deceived about.

“You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet.”

4. A favorite book, movie, or song with an island setting or theme?

I asked Dear for his answer to this question and he came up with Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’dell. Since we were just on the California Coast with views of the Channel Islands where the setting of this book might have been. I’ll give this question and answer to Dear.
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A story of survival, based upon the true story of a girl who was left upon an island near the coast of Southern California. She lived there for 18 years, alone. While she waited for rescue, she kept herself alive by building shelter, finding food, and fighting her enemies–the wild dogs.

5. Yesterday-did you run your day or did it run you? How so?

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Another timely question. I’m answering these questions on Tuesday so yesterday was Monday the 23rd of January. I was totally in the hands of others for the run of my day. It was my last full day in Southern California and I was staying with my sister in Huntington Beach. I attended a memorial service for a good friend’s mother and then spent the rest of the day and evening with this friend and her family and two of my sisters. We had a meal together and spent time reminiscing about our families and the times we had with each other.

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This is me with the children of Mrs. Kaluzny. Heidi has been a dear friend since 1969 and her younger brother George was dear to me, too.

6. You’re on an island holiday. Will I most likely find you parked in a beach chair, shopping in town, on the back of a jet ski, or snorkeling off the back of a catamaran?

My island holiday would be in Washington State instead of the tropics so I might be kayaking or rowing and also finding good restaurants and shops to enjoy.

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7. What do you think we humans most take for granted?

I think we take tomorrow for granted. We don’t know if we’ll be here tomorrow or what tomorrow holds. We also don’t know if our loved ones will be here tomorrow. We need to seize the day and be present in the day and know who holds our future in His hands and trust Him.

8. Insert your own random thought here.

It’s so good to spend time with friends and family but it’s always good to come home again to get my bearings. Eleven days in beds that are not my own make me really appreciate my own home and bed and space. I hope to be making long overdue visits to your blogs now that my feedly is working again.

Thank you to Joyce for asking the questions. Click over to From This Side of the Pond to see more answers or join in.

Starting Fresh with Hodgepodge…

1. Share one favorite moment/memory from your Christmas holiday.
 15747502_10211510518384524_8505381520756214670_nOur Nutcracker Christmas Crackers had little whistle/flutes in them and instructions to toot some Christmas songs together. It was so much fun with us laughing so much we snorted and maybe drooled a bit while trying to toot our whistles upon demand. Each whistle was numbered to created the right tone/note. Oye…it was fun!
2. What was the best thing you ate over the holidays? Was it homemade or store bought? If it was homemade did you make it?
swedishSwedish pancakes on Christmas morning are the best. 1st because Dear cooks them. 2nd because we all love them. A tradition that will not be broken.

3. What was one of the most beautiful things you saw over the holidays?

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People, people, people are the most beautiful things we saw over the holidays. A very beautiful thing was that our oldest flew to eastern Washington to help his brother and sister in law move into their new home in frigid temperatures. Our boys have a way of being able to motivate and help each other in good and tough times and it’s a beautiful thing to see and hear about.

4. What does fresh start mean to you?

Fresh Start was the name of my home cleaning business that I started in the late 80’s and early 90’s and that’s the first thing that came to mind with this question. Dear was in Pharmacy School for a mid-life change in his profession and I cleaned toilets to make money in several homes and at a medical and dental clinic. Of course I cleaned more than toilets but you get the idea. The work was so aerobic and I was so skinny.

5. On a scale of 1-10 (with 10 being very positive and 1 being not so great) how would you rate 2016 in terms of personal achievement and well being? Explain.

If I take my fluff out of the equation I’d give myself an 8!

van 2 035I’m still fluffy but besides that my health and outlook are good. I am not taking any medications. An IT Band Syndrome is still plaguing me even though I’m not a runner by any stretch of the imagination. Exercises to strengthen my core and take the strain off my IT band are helping. It generally takes a lot to get me down and I’m thankful for that. So…I’ll stick with an 8!

6. Every January 1st since 1976 Lake Superior University has published a list of words they’d like to see banished from the Queen’s English. Words may be banished due to misuse, overuse, or just general uselessness. Go here to read more about how the words were chosen or, if you’re like me, to find out what in the world the word or phrase even means or the context in which it’s used. There were quite a few on this year’s list I’d never heard before. Here’s the 2017 list of banished words-You, Sir-focus-Bete Noire-Town Hall Meeting-Post Truth-guesstimate-831-historic-manicured-echo chamber-on fleek-bigly-ghost-Dadbod-listicle-get your dander up-selfie drone-frankenfruit-disruption. Which word on the list would you most like to see banished in 2017? What word or phrase would you add to the list?

I’m tired of hearing about Town Hall Meetings. Another one I’d like to not hear again is “Gun Control”.

7. Large or small, light or deep, share with us one goal you have for the new year.
misc-stuff-028I got this fitbit for Christmas and I’d like to add the light goal of moving more.
My deep goal is to pray more.
 1 Thessalonians 5: 16-18:
Rejoice always,  pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
8. Insert your own random thought here.
I’ve got a recipe for Crock Pot Potato soup inspired from bj’s blog and Paula Deen up on the Mennonite Girls Can Cook blog. It was easy and satisfying. Click on over to see it.
The illustration at the top of this post is Russian and the words translate Happy New Year. I wish you all a very Happy New Year!
Linking up with Joyce at From This Side of the Pond. She provides the questions and we provide the answers.

Hello Winter Hodgepodge

1. What’s left to be done on your Christmas to-do list? 
Buy the ingredients for our Christmas Eve and Christmas day menus. Dear will be making his famous Tomato Rice Soup for Christmas Eve and then on Christmas day we will have Swedish Pancakes for breakfast (Dear makes those, too) and Prime Rib and Yorkshire Pudding for dinner. Oh my, looks like Dear will have the lion’s share of cooking duties since he’s throwing the Prime Rib on the Traeger this year, too. I’ll work on the sides. Daughter in love is bringing the homemade pies.
2. The Hodgepodge lands on the first day of winter this year. What’s your favorite thing about winter? 
Since we moved to Washington State from Southern California twenty eight years ago I have enjoyed having 4 distinct seasons. I appreciate different landscapes throughout the year. Winter isn’t my favorite but I appreciate it’s difference.  Winter clothing is my favorite thing about winter. I like comfy clothes.
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3. In what area of your life are you immature? Feel free to elaborate or not. 
First I’ll choose this definition of immature; not fully developed.  I am not fully developed in my life as a follower of Jesus. I still have lots to learn about trusting God in this daily walk. Obedience does not come naturally and easily to me. So in this I am immature. I thank God He loves me and doesn’t abandon me. He will never leave me on the side of the road and drive away like I threatened my children I’d do on some of those road trips when they were little.
4. What was the most (or one of the most) important lessons you learned in 2016? 
I can live with my husband under foot every day and still have joy. He’s been unemployed since June and from January till June he was a consultant working out of our home.
5. It’s Fried Shrimp Day…are you a fan? What’s your favorite way to eat shrimp? Will there be shrimp somewhere in your holiday feastings? 
Shrimp is not a staple in my culinary world. My favorite way to eat shrimp is coconut crusted as an appetizer at a restaurant. No we will not have shrimp in our feastings.
6. What sound lulls you to sleep? 
The lack of sounds is what lulls me to sleep.
7. What one word best describes your 2016? 
Unemployment

PM19088.  Insert your own random thought here.

We wish you a Merry Christmas,  we wish you a Merry Christmas, We wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, Good tidings we bring to you and your kin, Good tidings for Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Thank you Joyce for asking the questions. To see more hodgepodge click over to From This Side of the Pond.
Happy First Day of Winter y’all!

Mid-December Hodgepodge

1. Are you more task oriented or people oriented? Elaborate.

I am Martha not Mary… I’d love to be Mary and if I work at it I can be more like Mary but I fall back to being Martha-ish..

Luke 10:38-42 (ESV)

38 Now as they went on their way, Jesus entered a village. And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. 39 And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching. 40 But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she went up to him and said, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me.” 41 But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, 42 but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her.”

2. December 15 is National Wear Your Pearls Day…do you own/wear pearls? If you’re a man answering the question, does your sweetheart own or wear pearls? Everyone share a ‘pearl of wisdom’ with us here today.

P1050403I have some fake pearls that I sometimes wear but only wear them at events like weddings, etc. I do not vacuum with pearls on.

My pearl of wisdom is if you can’t afford pearls don’t buy them!

3. Speaking of pearls…oysters? Are you a fan or not a fan? If you answered yes, tell us your favorite way to eat oysters? If you said no, be honest-have you ever tried one or does just the idea of eating an oyster make you gag a little?

cdb89ba0-6ae6-4016-b989-d60ea7c63394_zpsakpjglptBefore 5 years ago I would gag if you talked about oysters. Now I can enjoy an oyster shooter with great spicy sauces. In the mosaic above my sisters and I are enjoying a weekend in Victoria, B.C. celebrating my 60th birthday in April of 2011. The top shot in the mosaic is an oyster shooter I ordered at the beginning of our meal.

4. Time Magazine has named President-elect Donald Trump Person of the Year. Let’s take presidents and presidential candidates out of the mix for a minute. If a political figure had not been chosen who would you name Man or Woman of the Year for 2016?

I’d nominate Cliff Barrows for man of the year. Cliff Barrows, music and program director for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, who once led congregational singing and Crusade choirs around the world with Billy Graham. Here’s a quote from him, “I’ve had no greater joy than encouraging people to sing,” said Mr. Barrows. “Every great moving of the Spirit of God has been accompanied by great singing. I believe it will always be so!”

Cliff Barrows, April 6, 1923 – November 15, 2016

5. The Pantone Color of the Year for 2017 has been announced, and it’s a vibrant green aptly named-greenery. Your thoughts? Is this a color currently in your home or wardrobe? Will you add something in this shade for the new year? Click here to see the color.

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We are ahead of the times at this old house. Our kitchen and hall ways are filled with greenery!

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6. Today I’ve had too much…This hasn’t been a too much of anything day it was all just right.

7. Share a favorite lyric from a favorite Christmas carol.

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8.  Insert your own random thought here.

While I was downtown yesterday at the Seattle Sounders Victory Parade Dear chose our mystery tree. When I came home we cut the strings and had the reveal. Another great stress free tree. It’s not perfect but it smells good. I hope to have it decorated by the weekend and I also hope to have our cards mailed by Friday, too. Our noses didn’t freeze off at the parade and rally. It was fun.

sounders-parade-155Linking up with Joyce at From This Side of the Pond. She supplies the questions and we provide the answers.

Bonus: I’ve got a simple Pear Soup recipe up on MGCC blog today. Click over to get the recipe.

Mid September Hodgepodge…

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1. What’s changed in your life, home, or community since your last birthday?
A lot…
One of the biggest thing is that Dear is either unemployed or retired. We don’t know which one quite yet. This of course makes a huge impact on life at this old house.
Another one is that with my last birthday I am now at Medicare age.
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Not quite at this stage yet but I hope we can still walk about and we’re still holding hands when we are this old.
2. September is Classical Music Month. Do you like/listen to classical music? If so what’s a favorite piece and/or who is a favorite composer?
We do enjoy classical music at this old house. We enjoy Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven and others. We enjoy string quintets. Another favorite is Mozart’s clarinet concerto.
IMGP04583. Besides The Bible, what’s a book that has positively changed your life, relationships, career, or perspective? How so?
Hedges: Loving your Marriage Enough to Protect It: Jerry B. Jenkins
This book has great safeguards that will help to protect a marriage from the pitfalls that can lead to adultery.
4. I read (here) these ten hobbies will make you smarter…play a musical instrument, read voraciously, meditate regularly, work out your brain (puzzles, sudoku, board games, etc), exercise often, learn a new language, write your feelings down (blog, journal, just write), travel to new places, cook different kinds of meals, participate in sports actively
 Are any on this list your current hobbies? Which hobby on the list would you be most inclined to try?
Cooking and traveling to new places are current hobbies both of which do not help me in my goal to lose some fluffiness!
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I’m inclined to try meditating more but the kind of meditating I’m talking about is clarified in this quote:
“Biblical meditation, unlike the popular varieties, is not a relaxation technique for emptying the mind but rather one that fills it with truth, using thought and memory to set your heart on fire.” ~Timothy Keller
homemaker monday 0025. What sports traditions does your family have?
The sports tradition that I share with my children (not my Dear who isn’t a team sports fan) is soccer. We have season tickets to the Seattle Sounders soccer games and enjoy these games together. If our football team makes it to the playoffs we’ll host a Seattle Seahawk Party to watch the game. Our family also enjoys hunting and shooting.
P10305676. In a few words, weigh in on the current football/National Anthem brouhaha. Keep it family friendly please.
My feelings are that the football field is not the place to show your angst since you are not the primary person on the field but part of a team and part of a tradition that honors the flag and country. It’s a sport’s field not a soap box. You should find another place that is more personal to share your feelings. You are being paid to play and paid well to play. Do your job and leave your platforms for another venue. I feel the same way about actors and actresses sharing their platforms on the Academy Awards Stage. I choose to honor the flag and those who have died protecting our freedom with these young men and others…
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Marine Birthday Ball
Our very own Marine and our daughter.
10556234_10204401701630899_6178563336099564642_n7. Where do you have loads of patience, and where do you most lack patience?
Loads of patience with my children. A horrible lack of patience with other drivers on the road!
Bow-Edison 0268. Insert your own random thought here.
 I’m enjoying the little and big hints that Fall is just around the corner. There will be lots of leaves falling to deal with but I like the changing seasons and what each season holds. Growing up in Southern California we didn’t have the same distinct passing of seasons. I’m still not sure if Fall or Spring is my favorite. Here are images from each season in our state of Washington.

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Linking up with From This Side of the Pond for Hodgepodge Wednesday. Thank you Joyce for coming up with the questions and inviting us to join in.

Wednesday Hodgepodge

HodgepodgebuttonI’m joining in again for Wednesday Hodgepodge with Joyce from This Side of the Pond. She comes up with the questions we find the answers. This week it’s all about the Hodgepodge blues…

1.  Are there any men or women in blue on your family tree?

We have a cousin who was a police officer in Huntington Beach. Our son in law is a Marine who wore dress blues.

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2. Are you someone who suffers from the Sunday night blues? What helps you get over it?

No Sunday night blues at our house since we are unemployed and everyday is a holiday. We are hoping for a few more years of employment for Dear before he is truly retired. Waiting to see…

3. I read the color blue is an appetite suppressant since there are very few naturally blue foods out there. How do you feel about blue cheese? Love it or blech? If you’re a fan, what’s something you like that’s made with blue cheese?
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Dear and I enjoy Blue Cheese, Roquefort or Gorgonzola dressings. We also enjoy these cheeses on a cheese platter with fruit or on flat breads as appetizers. Another way we enjoy blue cheese is in cream sauces with mushrooms. This has been an acquired or matured palate for me. In my youth I wouldn’t touch these cheeses with a ten foot pole!

4. We can’t head in to the Labor Day weekend without a related question, can we? Complete this thought: I work best when____________________.

I work best when I’m on my own and when the end is in sight. Sometimes to achieve the end in sight part I have to cut off big chunks of work into little chunks. I also work best with encouragement.

5. ‘Everything yields to diligence.’ Antiphanes Your thoughts? (on this particular quote or on diligence in general)

First I went to the definition of diligence:  constant and earnest effort to accomplish what is undertaken; persistent exertion of body or mind.

My Dear is a great example of someone who is diligent. He completes whatever he undertakes and is constant and earnest in his endeavors. I appreciate the end result but sometimes I have to leave for many hours and come back to the result of his labors instead of seeing all the earnest effort and what had to yield in the process!

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6. The National Park Service turned 100 years old on August 25th. Have you been to many of America’s National Parks? If so share with us a favorite or two. Which National Park would you most like to visit before the next birthday rolls around?

Dear and I visited Yellowstone National Park in June for the very first time. It was amazing. We’d like to see many more or our National Parks but the one that is on our bucket list right now is Glacier National Park.

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Here’s a flashback from the 50’s. My family at Crater Lake in Oregon which is a National Park. I’m the one in my mom’s lap with my sister Kathy holding my brother Tim and my sister Vera on the right. We also visited Yosemite National Park in my youth with my family in the 50’s.

7.  Bid farewell to August in seven words or less.

Celebrations, anticipation, launches, and goodbyes…adieu August.

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8.  Insert your own random thought here.

Speaking of blue I have to share that I love blue and white dishes. It’s hard for me to leave any blue dishes behind especially if they are made in England.

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I also like blue jeans…

Hope you aren’t suffering with summer blues. We are cooling down right now with some rain in the forecast.

Wednesday Hodgepodge

I’m joining Wednesday Hodgepodge again this week with Joyce From This Side of the Pond.
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1. I read here four creative activities to try this month. They were-calligraphy, make your own cookbook, dance or learn a new type of dance, and letter writing. Which activity on the list appeals to you most? Will you add it to your August?
I’ve already had my hand in a few cookbooks and since we are having a hotter than usual August the only thing that sounds appealing in this list is letter writing. 
2. Bertrand Russell is quoted as saying, ‘To be without some of the things you want is an indispensable part of happiness.‘ Agree or disagree? Explain.
Disagree. Having or not having things does not determine my happiness. I think happiness is overrated. Gratitude and contentment are things I’d rather focus on.
3. August 17th is National Thriftshop Day…are you a ‘thrifter’? If so, tell us about one of your best or favorite finds.
I did a lot of thrifting in the past but not as much these days. I’ve found many great treasures over the years. Here are some stand out favorites from years past.

P1040310Lomonosov China for $29.95

Oscar de la Renta for $19.97. This dress has ostrich feathers on the trim. We didn’t find a perfect match on their site but the dresses that were similar were in the $3900 dollar range. The dress fit Katie perfectly and she wore it out to her celebration dinner when she completed her studies at the University of Washington.

 4.  On a scale of 1-10 (with 1= almost none and 10=loads) how would you rate your sense of wanderlust? What kicks your wanderlust into high gear?
I think I’m going to have to go with a 10 on this one. Any thoughts of seeing something new gets my senses into high gear. I love to travel.
5. Has life felt more like a marathon or sprint so far this month? How so?
More of a sprint with several small projects started and finished and many small events that have nothing to do with each other.
6. What do you need to get a jump on before fall officially arrives?
I’d like to do some de-fluffing (dropping some pounds).
7. What’s the last thing you did with friends or family where you lost track of time?
Enjoying a meal and conversation together.
8. Insert your own random thought here.
We are going to be on the road today and I’ll not be able to come around and see posts till later in the evening.