Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Names

Have you ever noticed how names that you didn't particularly care for can become pretty once you associate them with a sweet natured person and otherwise pretty names can lose their charm when attached to a chronically grumpy person?

I was introduced to the name Matilda when I was in forth or fifth grade and asked to memorize a poem about a little girl named Matilda. I can't remember all of it any longer but the first two lines have always stuck. Matilda told such dreadful lies,       It made one gasp and stretch ones eyes,  Because of her habit of telling lies something very horrible happened to her. The name Matilda became less than desirable to me then.

Several years later we had a van load of visitors drop by to see us. Among the guests was an older single girl. Her name happened to be Matilda. She was a sour person and always had something negative to add to the conversation that was flowing around her. The name was secured a little more firmly on the list of ones I didn't really care for.

Several weeks after we got married I was looking through one of my new cookbooks trying to find a recipe to bake a cake. Most of them were unfamiliar but when I came to one called Matilda cake I had to give it a try. I only ever made it once and it lived up to the name. It was a tough bland cake. Eating it was like chewing on a vanilla flavored shoe sole.

Lumping all of those experiences together when ever I heard the name Matilda it always made me think of unpleasant things.

Enter a very sweet elderly lady with snow white hair. Her hands and face lined with deep wrinkles but her eyes still held a happy sparkle, her smile lit up the room, and she had the sweetest voice. Her name I learned happened to be Matilda. With time I can now envision her when I hear that name and it makes me smile. And I think I have learned that it isn't the name, it is the person that bears it that makes it sweet or not.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Monday Ramble

I'm back! My Mom's visit was everything I dreamed it would be. It was absolutely great to be able to visit, laugh, and work together like we used to do and the children greatly enjoyed getting to know her as well.

Other than the stories I used to tell them they barely knew her so they really enjoyed her visit.

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We live far enough inland that the effects of hurricane Irene were minimal. Our power was off almost all day Saturday. Thankfully it is back on by now and I can't help but think of all the people that are affected by the storm much more than we were and hope that their lives can continue like normal before long as well.

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At four this morning we were awakened by an awful noise. After sitting up and listening and peering out the window we couldn't see or hear anything else so tried to get our remaining thirty minutes of sleep before the alarm clock goes off.

As the first streaks of dawn were tinting the sky we noticed that the entire fence to the cow pasture along the road, beside the creek was wiped away. Somewhere someone has a pretty dinged up car! The fence has been replaced already and as far as I know none of the cows wandered out on the road because of this.

Monday, August 22, 2011

My Morning

So far my morning has been pleasantly busy.  I'm not someone who enjoys spending a lot of time in waiting rooms or seeing a doctor but there is something about hearing that everything is going great that makes me happy and the visit worthwhile.


And when I came home the phone rang. It was my Mom calling which made me excited but when she told me her news I had to do a happy dance! She is coming to visit for several days this week! It will be the first time I see her in over three years. I can hardly wait.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Little Bit Of This & That

Blogger is acting up again this morning and I'm unable to upload the pictures I wanted to so instead I'll be doing another post of random things in my life that make me smile.
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I have a weakness for tongue twisters. I love finding them and getting others to say them. My latest I happened to discover quite by accident as I was looking through a recipe book and found a recipe for Braised Beef Brisket. I discovered that, that is one of the most difficult recipe titles ever to try and pronounce correctly.  Go ahead and try saying it three times really fast.
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I look forward to a certain time every morning while I am preparing breakfast and Rosebud stumbles into the kitchen still rubbing the sleep from her eyes. She gets the plates from the cupboard and starts setting the table and then pauses and says brightly. "Mama, I have a feeling that today is going to be a really good day."  At bedtime she will pause and say happily, "I was right about today. It was really good!"   I would love to be able to keep my little girl like this always but since I know that children don't stay little very long at all I hope she can carry that positive hopeful attitude all the way through life.
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I love hearing the katydids sing their noisy songs every night. Here in our area once you hear them it is a sure sign that fall is just around the corner. My favorite season!
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I love Sundays. It's the only day I don't have to worry about packing lunch and we can spend all day together as a family. It never lasts long enough. An added perk is that LV always takes care of preparing our food in the evening while I don't have to worry about anything. I must admit it is rather fun being spoiled.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Giveaway Winner

It's so nice to know I'm not the only one that finds stray objects in my washing machine. Now if only there were a way to make that those type of strays stay out and stray socks find their way in we'd be all set.

After consulting my friend, the Random Generator here is the lucky winner receiving the book Simon & Susie Stories is........
Folky Dots said.......
A. Dead. Mouse.

please enter me :)

Congratulations! Please email me with your address and I will get the book mailed to you.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Giveaway Time

Lately the nights and mornings have been very chilly which makes that the house is the perfect temperature to feel like curling up on a comfortable chair with a cozy blanket and a good book. And while I can't give you the chair or the blanket I do have a good book here that is waiting to find a home with someone who would enjoy reading it.

Simon & Susie Stories by David Wagler is a book that covers three and a half years of a typical Amish teen during their "rumspringa"   It is another one of the books that I used to really like while I was growing up.

If you would like to have a chance to win it leave a comment telling me what the strangest thing was you ever found in your washing machine. I have had a fair share of unintended things appearing in the washer. Anything from spare change, pens, to the dreaded paper towel but by far the strangest and most unsettling for me was the day I discovered a little toad bravely bobbing on the top of the clothes. Needless to say the toad was removed and the clothes were washed again.

For a second entry leave a link on your blog for this giveaway and come back and leave another comment telling me you did.

I will be drawing a winner on Monday afternoon, August 15th using random generator.
Disclaimer: The only compensation I get from doing this giveaway is the warm fuzzy feeling I get from knowing someone else will get to enjoy this book.

Friday, August 12, 2011

The Candy Dish

Yesterday we needed something from the attic so the children and I trooped up there and started digging through boxes. I did a terrible job of marking boxes so we had to dig through almost every single one before I found what I was looking for. In the process of digging through the boxes I found this sweet little apple shaped candy dish.

There is quite a story behind this little dish, or at least about the day when I received it as a little girl. I wrote about it in the first book of the series I am working on. 

Rosebud is the first person to read all my stories for the book and was absolutely thrilled to see this little dish since she had really enjoyed the story. She suggested I share a picture with you so that you can look forward to hearing about it someday too.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Reality Check

Apparently I don't act my age. I think I'll take that as a compliment though after Sunbeam handed this little note to me yesterday.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Easy Roast Beef Sandwiches

The less time I spend working over a hot stove during the summer the happier I am! After trying these sandwiches I knew we would be having them on our summer menu for a long time. Very simple and very tasty. To me that is the perfect combination.

Easy Roast Beef Sandwiches

12 oz. thinly sliced deli roast beef
½ cup water
¼ cup ketchup
1 Tbsp brown sugar
½ tsp prepared mustard
1/8 tsp pepper
1/8 tsp salt
¼ tsp  red pepper flakes (hot)

Combine last seven ingredients in a saucepan. Separate roast beef slices and add them one at a time while stirring to make sure each piece is coated with sauce. Bring to a boil and cook for 4-6 minutes. Serve on your favorite hamburger buns.

Yields 4 if each sandwich has a nice amount of meat.

Delicious!