Thursday, June 23, 2022

Happenings

     Things have been somewhat of a comedy of errors around here since LV got hurt. There's over a dozen things I could write about, but I'm only choosing three, of varying degrees of oh-no!

    1. I opened the door to one of our lazy susans and spotted fresh evidence of a furry trespasser. 
    It's summer! Mice should be fat and happy outdoors, but apparently the treats I have on hand were more tempting than seeds and what ever else mice feast on outside. 
    I cleaned up the mess, and then Steven rose to the occasion and by the next morning our house was once again furry trespasser free.

    2, I got up to find a text on my phone from Rosie Mae. She had left for work early that morning, but on her way she hit a deer.
    Her poor car received quite a bit of damage, but thankfully she wasn't hurt. The car is now sitting at the auto shop. Meanwhile she has a loaner. It got dinged in a parking garage the first day she used it.           Four years of uneventful driving under her belt and then two incidents in two days had us all shaking our heads in disbelief and sympathy.

    3. We were all doing our chosen evening activities, reading writing, etc when Steven announces frantically. "Look at the ceiling!"
    I went to see, and here the ceiling in our hallway was sagging badly. A few minutes later, it came down.
    The girls and I cleaned the mess up, but the gaping hole in the ceiling will remain until LV is back up and able to make the repairs.
    We have no idea what caused it to come down. So strange!

    It's four weeks already since the accident where LV got hurt, and surgery is finally scheduled. We're all really looking forward to getting to the other side of that and have healing be able to truly begin. As of now he is hoping to be able to walk again by Thanksgiving. 

Thursday, June 2, 2022

This ~n~ That

    It's been a week now since I picked up the phone to LV telling me he's been hurt and is on the way to the hospital. 
    He has a shattered heel as well as multiple fractures in his ankle bones. 
    He's at home with orders to keep his leg elevated while we wait for swelling to go down enough that they can do surgery to try and piece everything back together. 
    Having him laid up has shown us how much we take for granted when everything is going well, and also how our house is not handicap friendly - not even a little bit. It has added layers of challenges as I try to care for him to the best of my ability.
~~~~~
    LV has been studying Spanish on Duolingo while he's laid up. I thought I tune most of it out, but then I woke in the middle of the night with the words yo bebo, tú bebes, él bebe running through my mind, which leads me to believe my tuning it all out has not been all that successful.
    Maybe I should take up studying Spanish as well
~~~~~
    Usually when ever I buy avocados I carefully select the ones that seem to be ripe enough to eat, but not mushy. Sometimes my only options are firmer than I would like. I bring them home and wait semi patiently for them to ripen, in hopes that at least one of them will be ready to eat before next weeks shopping trip.
    About a month ago I got half a dozen that were still much too hard to eat. I brought them home, but with no room in the produce drawer in the refrigerator I put them in the fruit bowl on the counter top along with the apples that were already there.
    Much to my surprise, the next morning they were the perfect ripeness to eat.
    I would have to experiment with this!
    The next time I bought hard avocados. Some I placed in with apples. The others I simply placed on the counter top. The ones with the apples again ripened overnight.
    I was thrilled! Finally I had found something to perfectly ripen an avocado in a relatively short amount of time. Once they reached the desired ripeness I put them in the fridge to keep them from over ripening, and enjoyed lovely avocados all week long.
    I felt like something of a scientist inventor until I did a quick internet search and saw that storing them with apples has been a ripening method for ages already and I had simply been behind times. Sigh ... there went my feeling like a genius.
~~~~~
    It's that time of year again when walking up and down the front porch stairs is like walking through a tunnel of beauty. 

    The bush doesn't bloom very long, but I fully enjoy it as long as it lasts. 
~~~~~
    Sharon tried her hand at making miniature three layer lunch box cakes. I thought they turned out delightful. 


    The flavors she chose were delicious as well.
    I love seeing their creativity in the kitchen. Being able to taste it is a fun added bonus.
~~~~~
    On top of next week's shopping list is the word - clock.
    The other evening as I was cooking supper the kitchen clock randomly popped off the wall and came crashing down startling all of us.
    I feel there's a whole assortment of puns available to describe this happening, but I'm too tired to think of anything beyond "time flies when you're having fun."

Monday, May 23, 2022

My Journey with Weight

     "Skinny mini fishy tail. Skinny mini fishy tail," the gleeful chant of the schoolboys sounded in the air as I cowered in the corner of the schoolroom. I looked desperately for an escape route but my last bit of fleeing had led me to this corner where I was now trapped.
    "Skinny mini fishy tail, 
Skinny mini fishy tail" the chant continued.
    "Boys! Leave her alone!" the blessed voice of my teacher commanded. 
    They dispersed and I went to the book shelves to find a book to read the rest of the recess. The chant still echoing in my head.
    I hated being skinny. Not just skinny, but painfully skinny. As a nine year old, I started praying that God would make me fat. That prayer continued for several years.
    Skinny was replaced by slender in my teenage years, but over the years that changed. I'm not blaming God for answering the silly little prayer of a young girl and making me fat, but with more years came more and more weight.
    For the past fifteen years I tried a lot of different diets and things to try to change that. I would lose a few pounds, but then they'd come roaring back bringing some friends with them.
    I tried the grapefruit diet, the cabbage soup diet, you name it I tried it. All with similar results. And the numbers on the scales kept creeping upward.
    I tried intermittent fasting. I gave myself a month where I ate only one meal a day, and that meal I only ate the same amount I would have eaten for that meal had I been eating three meals a day. At the end of the month I stepped on the scale and was horrified to see not only had I not lost anything, but I had actually gained over ten pounds. In what universe is that fair?
    No longer was anyone chanting skinny mini fishy tail at me, but now I would get the occasional message on Facebook from someone selling Plexus, ItWorks, and some other things that  they thought I should take to try to lose weight. It made me feel the same way I did all those years ago being bullied for the way I looked in school.
    I tried Trim Healthy Mama, I actually did lose some weight on it, but it messed up some other areas of my health so I had to quit.
    But then last year I happened to discover a book at the library.
    



    I read it, looked at the recipes, and decided to give it a go. It has changed my life! It's finally something that actually works for my body.
    The plan was to restart my metabolism by following her food recommendations for four weeks, and then every three months after that do a tune up for a week or two.
    I faithfully followed her recommendations on what foods to eat, and when. It was the most undiet-like diet I have ever tried. I never felt deprived or as if I was missing out on good food. The recipes I tried were delicious, and I made my own as well by simply using the accepted ingredient list for the day.
    Even during the time I'm not on this food plan my reset metabolism keeps the weight steadily trending downward, while I eat absolutely anything and everything.
    I'm doing a tune up again this week. 
    My breakfast this morning consisted of spicy rice patties and an apple. To make the rice patties I cooked one cup of brown rice in four cups of chicken broth yesterday and tucked it in the fridge. This morning I used one cup of the precooked rice, added two egg whites, several tablespoons of minced onion and almost a teaspoon of red pepper flakes and then fried them (without butter or oil) until golden brown. I happen to really like these. Tomorrow morning I'll have them again. Wednesday and Thursday I have a different breakfast that includes smoked salmon which is always a treat for me, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday mornings I'll have a sandwich with toasted bread, four strips of turkey bacon, a fried egg, an avocado, and if I'm in the mood some sliced tomato. All three breakfast menus are completely delicious! They don't even feel like a diet.
    I have lost over fifty pounds so far, and am feeling great! I'm not at my goal weight yet, but it no longer looks impossible. I'm so happy I finally found something that works for me, and plan to continue doing the tune up weeks until I reach my goal. and very likely even beyond. I enjoy living with a metabolism that actually works.
    Edit to add: A friend on Facebook shared that those with ulcerative colitis or a gastro type condition may not want to follow the plan in this book. 

Monday, May 16, 2022

My Parents

    We are knocking on the one year anniversary of when our family changed forever.
    As most of you know, I have many fond memories of growing up Amish.
    There's one thing though that I wish I could change about it all, and that is photos.
    I would love to have stacks of photos to see, instead of only the slightly out of focus images in my head. Somehow, I can't bring them to full clarity in my mind. Even as I relive memories, time has fogged up the faces and I can no longer see them clearly.
    I am thankful for the few photos I do have.
    The best one I have of my parents from three years ago, taken on the morning of my "baby" brother's wedding.


    With Mom no longer here with us, I cherish this picture, even if I can't see her face.
    

Monday, May 2, 2022

Currently

Reading ...  in the Bible I'm in the middle of Luke.  In other books I'm enjoying several different ones at the moment. 

Will the Circle be Unbroken by Sean Dietrich. I'm only at the very beginning of the book, but so far it's great and I have no doubt I will continue to love it. I don't remember when I first became aware of Sean Dietrich, but one of my friends shared something he wrote on Facebook and I looked at his public page and loved all the columns he wrote so I started following him. Last summer as we were going through my Mom's battle with cancer and her funeral etc, Sean was writing about his beloved mother-in-law as she was dying. He put thoughts and feeling into words that I was feeling, and everyday I'd hop onto Facebook to read his latest post. I still always take time to read everything he posts on Facebook. Because of that, when I discovered his book at the library I swooped it up and look forward to enjoying it from cover to cover.



I got some of my Mom's cookbooks. I'm loving looking through them and reading the little notes she jotted next to the recipes she tried. I still like Amish cookbooks even though I prefer pictures alongside the recipes instead of only in my imagination


Writing ... text messages, emails, letters, blog posts, and per Steven's request I've been working on the Aaron Yoder book. He read the Lily books and really wanted to hear things from Aaron's childhood and his point of view.  I've been having a lot of fun with it so far.

Watching ... the Spring Baking Championship. I enjoy watching the talented bakers and get inspired to keep learning new things. 

Listening ... to the birds singing in the trees around the house. There's a little house finch sitting on a branch right outside the kitchen window singing away so beautifully. You can listen to its song here.

Baking ... there's a fresh batch of sugar cookies on the kitchen table. Rosie Mae topped some of them with a pale pink icing and wants to package them up to gift to her friend who had a baby. I have my pizzelle maker out and want to make a batch of pizzelles later today. I'm wanting to try a new flavor, but haven't quite decided what that will be.

Cooking ... for supper tonight there will be stuffed peppers, salad, and then cookies for dessert.

Feeling ... happy and hopeful, and slightly guilty. The slightly guilty feeling is comeing from the fact that I never hit the publish button for the Y and Z posts in the A -Z April blogging challenge. They're still sitting in my drafts folder, but at this point I think I'll just leave them there and pull them out next April.

Disliking ... the potholes on one of the local roads. They're deep. There's an abundance of them. It's nearly impossible to avoid all of them without simply avoiding the road entirely.

Loving ... this gorgeous spring weather! Sunshine, green grass, flowers, baby calves, and everything spring entails. It's such a happy time of year!

Playing ... later today we'll be playing Menu Mash-up. It's a fun little game where you try to create tasty sounding dishes from the cards you drew. Steven got it from our game shelves this morning and the girls and I agreed to play it with him this afternoon.

Cleaning ... other than the daily dozen ... on the agenda for this week is to clean and organize our roll top desk. It's a task that has been getting pushed back for long enough.