Tuesday, July 29, 2014

What To Do

How many times in you life have you been left wondering what to do? When you're looking for concrete answers and they don't seem to come He provides. 

Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls. -- Jeremiah 6:16

This beloved verse came up in my reading the other day. I've been doing a read through of the Bible this year. I admit some days are more difficult than others; all those begats and atrocities. But most days either a single verse or a story speak to me. I am grateful for the time to attempt this.

Another cherished verse came to me from a friend in Bible study. I am forever grateful to her for this answer and I pray it will always come to mind when I don't know what to do.

Trust in the Lord by Graber's Graphic Designs on Etsy

It's so comforting to know that the burden of answering that age old question is not mine to carry. I hope and pray that you, too, find the answers today.

I love the sofa in the picture. It reminds me of the one we just ordered. We sold our old sofa at a garage sale early this month and then spent the better part of the month furniture shopping. We calculated we've now bought five sofas in our 34 years of marriage. I was thankful when number five was ordered Friday so we could get on with some summer fun.

I'll leave you with some reminders of our Sunday hike at Suntop Peak.

Linda <><

Thursday, July 24, 2014

A Burger Stack

I come from a family that loves to cook. We debate whether it's an art or a science. Most of the time I like to use a recipe, at least for the first run through. Then I'll experiment and tweak. In general I like to see the tried and true proportions for any given recipe. How about you? 

This week I looked around the kitchen and came up with a burger meal with ingredients I had in my garden and kitchen. I eat very little bread, so I wanted a bun-less burger interesting enough that I won't miss the grain. This combination did it!

First, on a cool July morning I roasted eggplant to make Baba Ghanoush. I also roasted an orange bell pepper I had on hand.

Then, I roasted slices of cabbage from my garden. I grill roasted them by wrapping them in foil.

I grilled the burgers. I love the ground bison from Costco. That's when I caramelized some Walla Walla onions also. 

Then I stacked from bottom to top as follows: roasted cabbage, burger, Baba-Ghanoush, onions, grainy mustard and roasted pepper. I had a Capprese salad on the side. Didn't miss the bread, it was yummy! 

Do you like to follow recipes or create or a little of both? I admit, sometimes when I decide to 'create' it bombs. This time it was mouth watering!

Have a great week and remember

Linda <><

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Some Ews and Aws

It has been a hectic week, thus my plan to share my personal potato salad instructions has been dashed until another week. However, here is a variety of randomness that has touched me, one way or another this week. 

James 1:22 by DesignByAnyOtherName on etsy

First, we were fortunate to savor the incredible wonder of God's creation more than once with the supermoon making it's appearance. Friday night we were coming home from a movie and the sun was setting as the moon was rising and the sky was painted with wispy clouds colored by the wild fires in B.C. and eastern Washington. Saturday night we took a walk specifically to see the moon rise and enjoyed it with fellow neighbors. Did you get to see it?

Supermoon playing peekaboo with Mount Rainier

This sweet vining black eyed Susan slipped through my fence from next door. What a lovely gift!

Thank you next door neighbors

Also in my garden I ate my first cherry tomato. It was tasty. The extra hot weather we are experiencing along with the Tagro has my tomatoes looking better than ever. Now, if I only could convince the birds that their birdseed and, really, anything else, would taste better than my ripe tomatoes I would have a bumper crop! Any suggestions? The fake owl, the real cat, net covering and shiny metal has not worked. Wish me luck!

I have more tomatoes, further along than I have ever had here

Last, and just for a smile, here's the latest from "Weird Al". I'm the first to admit, my grammar is not perfect. My brother is a grammar Nazi and my mother was an English and typing teacher. I remember her making me type my papers over and over again and again for school. Kids today don't know how good they have it!

In all the busyness of the week today's devotional was a great reminder for me. James 1:22 says, Don't just Listen to God's word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves.
Linda <><

Monday, July 7, 2014

A Three Tree Fourth

Reminiscing over half a century of July fourths I've come to realize I've been blessed with many sweet recollections. With the cousins, as a child, I recall riding in the back of the pickup truck to Courthouse and Jail Rock and Bridgeport's evening rodeo with fireworks to precede our own sparkler fun. Then there was the honeymoon 'fourth' in a sweet cabin on Puget Sound and later with friends watching our kids do their own parade in Georgia. Most recently we've succumbed to letting the now grown kids do their own thing, while we clean the garage and watch the neighborhood fireworks. What a treat it was to spend this Fourth of July at Three Tree Point with our dear friends, Suzanne and Ty and family!

Three Tree Point is a close knit beach community on Puget Sound. For around 30 years they have been celebrating Independence Day right. It starts with a bugle call at 8:30 AM, then breakfast is served from 9-11 AM. The afternoon is highlighted with a flag raising ceremony, a children's parade, a small carnival, a treasure hunt and a kayak parade. Before the fireworks show a band plays and there's dancing in the street! The fireworks display was big, but sitting on the beach watching a 180 degree plus light show around the sound was spectacular. We've already made plans to join them again next year!

Here's our day in photographs.

Our home for the fourth

First, unloading the kayaks

Morning view up the street

Time for breakfast

View from the water

More from the water

Kids' parade

Kayak/paddle board parade and Mount Rainier 

How do you keep the critters calm?

Food is an important part of the day

Time to party

Dancing in the street

Mount Rainier overseeing the festivities

The night ended with a boom

And a bang!

To think such celebrations were taking place from sea to shining sea warms my heart. I am blessed to live in a country where we're free to celebrate or protest if we choose. This day I witnessed joyous celebration!

Patriotic Decorative Pillows by RyensMarketplace on etsy

I brought the potato salad! I love making it. Most folks say they love eating it. Next week I'll tell the story behind it and how it's made! 

Summer officially begins in the Pacific Northwest on July 5th. Happy summer to all!
Linda <><

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

A Weekend Getaway

It was our anniversary. After much deliberation we decided to make a short trip somewhere we'd never been, outside the good old USA. Our adventure took us to Sooke, BC on Vancouver Island. We live close enough that we've made several trips to Victoria, but never ventured beyond. It turns out Vancouver Island is a big, wild, outdoorsy place. Victoria is lovely, very touristy and fun for it's British vibe. It's a great place for urban hiking. The ferry runs from Victoria, so we spent some of our time there as well. Here's our weekend in pictures!


Catching the ferry at Port Angeles

A mostly gray ride over

Waiting for the best fish and chips ever at Red Fish Blue Fish
 with my friend Jonathon Livingston

An afternoon walk on Whiffin Spit


At a scenic view on our drive up the coast to the beaches

We hiked to several beaches along the Juan De Fuca Marine Trail for a day's total of a hilly 11 miles. An over-sized soaking bath tub was perfect at the end.

View from the trail at Botanical Beach

On the trail

A view on Botanical Beach

Tide pool life

Tide pools abound on Botanical Beach

I caught some waves, with the camera

Crane at the beach

Trail to our second beach, Sombrio Beach

This beach is popular with surfers

China Beach was mostly just us and the seagulls 

Mystic Beach was the last stop on our trek

To get there and back I had to overcome my fear of suspension bridges
(and heights)



This was our actual anniversary, 34 years! The day found us trail weary and limited by time. We had to get in line for the ferry in Victoria by 1:30 PM, so we got going (slowly) and spent a short day of urban hiking in Victoria. We ate brunch at an old favorite, in the garden room of Swans Brewpub. No photos, as we left the card in the tablet the night before and didn't realize it. 

We had a lovely ride back to the U.S. Then we began our search for someplace open to eat one last celebratory meal. Somehow we ended up in the quaint town of Sequim (pronounced "skwim") at Blondie's Plate.

Yummy local steamer clams

One of my all time favorites, Moscow Mule

The entire meal was truly delightful and was topped off with complimentary truffles for our special day! 

Honeymoon 1980

34 years ago if you had said I would be eating tapas in Sequim and photographing the food and Moscow mule on my phone before blogging and facebooking it for everyone to see I would have said you were mad!

Original Browning quote by Suzi Scribbles on etsy

On the other hand, if you had told me I'd be doing that or anything for that matter, with my best friend, the guy I married 34 years ago, that, my friend, I knew.
Linda <><