Tuesday, July 24, 2012

And he's off...

My boy is off to the Ark for the week of his life.  All the Moms are at home praying for safety, fun and spiritual renewals and safety, oh ya and safety.  Especially in the wake of the devastating death at a local camp on the weekend.  Our hearts are with the family and we are praying for whatever you can pray for when someone loses a child.  It just seems not right!  And our hearts cry out!

And I can only be thankful for each moment that we are given.

473.  lazy summer days
474.  apricots overflowing their bright orange insides into jars
475.  this amazing girl I'm given who fills this house with music and cookies
476.  life long friends
477.  this boy who is on the brink of so much and brings the house to life, it's so quiet when he's gone
478.  faith that burns deep down even though sometimes it seems like so much work
479.  a faithful, hard working man

Love these words today from Ann:

In the beginning, our God spoke beauty because He is Beauty and the God of the Bible is an artist and what you must never forget is that you are His art. Touch your face right now and feel what you really are, what His Son whispers, “My masterpiece worth dying for, my beauty worth redeeming.”

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Fascinator.... turned Full On Fascinating Afro

It turned from, "Hey! Want a flower for your hair?" into this:

Who could resist a thunder storm flattened hydrangea bush? We had to do something with all those flowers!  And I don't bring much of anything inside because invariably one of my boys will start sneezing.  We're kind of thinking maybe we could start a new trend, maybe introduce some prom hairstyles that smell fantastic!! 

All that beautiful "hair" obviously needed to be worn with Gramma's grad dress
 (which now fits, but is about 6 inches too short to be floor length - it's a nice tea dress).
Isn't it an amazing vintage print?

 And then I got to playing around with some tints and styling tools on Picasa.

 I love this one!!

It's totally feeling like a relaxing summer day!!

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Cherries in Rum

I had a few requests for this recipe, so thought I'd post it here since that's a little easier than facebook.  It seriously is one of those things that makes me picture sitting in front of the Christmas tree with the lights on and all the mood and glow of that season.  But..I am so not ready for that season yet!!

Brandied Cherries (but I use rum)
6 pounds dark sweet cherries (I used about 10 cups)
1 cup sugar
1 cup water 
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 cup rum

Wash and pit cherries.  Combine sugar, water and lemon juice in a pot.   I like to add about 1/2 -1 T. cornstarch to it as well, because I like the juice to have just a bit of texture to it, and be not just liquid, but it's your choice.  If you do, add it now.  Bring to a boil then, reduce to simmer.  Add cherries and simmer until hot throughout. Add rum.  Remove from heat and pack into hot jars ladling hot syrup over cherries (leave 1/4" headspace).  Put on lids and process in boiling water canner for 10 min.  Great served over ice cream!  
Really it's the only way to go!

Cherries in rum and cherry jam

This Week in My Garden

It seems like so many things are crazy in the world today.  Things turning upside down in a moment.  I'm not good with words, sometimes too harsh with them, don't always say what I mean, or really describe what I am thinking and it comes out all wrong. But my heart beats full with blessings and I think of so many ways I am thankful:  for the small things, for the big things.  For silly stories in the dark, evenings out with the girls, cherries, cherries and more cherries, the way the light falls through the storm clouds, knowing I'll always be loved for 18 years and many more, toddlers running around my kitchen, teenagers who think we're OK, grandmas who plan exciting adventures for summer outings, friends at the touch of a button whenever you need a quick word of advice, especially on what to wear for a job interview.  And laughter.
We were up way past bedtime talking with friends who were just stopping over, and just felt like we are holding precious moments of life in our hands, memories and futures. Somehow we are learning to trust God that He has plans and control over everything else as it happens.  To hold on tight, but not too tight.  To know when to cling on and when to let go.  I don't know if I'll be able to learn that one ever.

This week in the garden:

 Carol's sweetest of all sweet peas, her love of gardening, her vigor for life and for all she left behind.  Makes me almost cry every time I look at them.

 Holy hostas!!

 The clematis intertwining with the grape vine

Our little babies are feathering out.  Egg #4 didn't hatch, but we have 3 little robins whose parents freak out every time we poke our heads out the window to peek.  You can sort of see 2 beaks there.  I need photographer man to get a better shot for me.

 Angrily watching on, mad about our disruption.  I've been amazed at their dedication. Loved having them out with me this week while I've been out in the yard so much!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Robin's Egg Blue

 I was out last week ready to prune back my climbing roses that were going crazy, when I saw a nest from below.  Found out we have the most amazing view of the whole event from above, right outside Jacob's bedroom window.  Mommy robin is actively taking control of the backyard in her efforts to hatch these eggs.

 Last night, when we got home, I took another peek, and they've started hatching!!  They are featherless little pink blobs at the moment.  One egg still left to go.

Daddy robin is having a stressful day today as we spent a good part of the morning picking cherries.  We left him lots so he can have quick access to a good snack.  He's got a great look out from this vantage point.

Still today, there's one left to go.  How long apart can they hatch, or will this one not make it?  I'll Google and let you know.  I did see their little beaks sticking out this morning.

Oh phew.. the last egg still has a chance.  Apparently, the mother will lay one egg a day for 4 days = 4 eggs (usually), so they will hatch in the order they were layed, and can take up to a day to hatch.  We can expect the birds to stay in the nest 14-16 days.  They need to be fed 9-16 times a day.  Should be a busy place for the next while.   Daddy has been carrying worms back and forth and standing guard. 

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Lemon Lime Summa Time

We're back from a few days camping at our favorite annual spot.  The river was higher than we've even seen it.  Other years, we have had to push or paddle ourselves downstream when we tube. This year, we were a bit cautious to even go on parts of it.  Over the 3 days, the waters subsided a few feet though.  We took a few extra kids along for the fun!  I loved watching the boys doing what they should be doing every day!  Wish this were my backyard!!  It's always easier to find peace and God out in His outdoors, away from the busy city.

the golden hour

my sweet boy

best friends for 12 years

my boys!

this kid cracks me up

Warren's fish

cute girl!
Something about being llamas.. private joke

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

It's Already July!!

We finally celebrated Erin's June birthday.  You would think it would be hot and sunny, and we could go in the pool!  NO!  It was a huge 14 degrees or something.  The kids ended up roasting s'mores over a fire last night, curled up in fleece jackets.  Ended up being a fun night, just in a different sort of way.  I always think, all this rain will keep away the fires that seem to have become an annual event somewhere around here every summer, so I'm thankful, especially with what's going on in Colorado.
We planned a photo scavenger hunt which ended up with some hilarious shots!  Most of them on someone else's phone, but we did manage to get a few on camera.

A "view" of Kelowna
"find someone with a mustache"
"crossing the street duckling style"

Erin did some baking/decorating, par usual, on her own cake...  Yummy!

Happy 4th of July my south of the border friends... and my boy who was born there!