Hot Dogs and Strawberry Shortcake

hot dog

 

Why is it that we have to be reminded that life is short?

Why is it that we have to be reminded that life is fragile?

Why is it that we have to be reminded to live our lives every day like today might be our last?

We have a family member who has terminal cancer.  It reminds us that although we may be healthy today, that our health could change for any of us tomorrow.  Not just because of cancer, it can be any number of things.

We live our lives and somehow we forget that tomorrow is not guaranteed.  We make plans for next month, next year or “in the future”.

Today we threw our diets out the window.  We weren’t counting calories, or pounds, or cholesterol or blood pressure.

Today we ate Hot Dogs for dinner, and a big cereal bowl filled with home made shortcake biscuits, strawberries, and freshly whipped cream piled inside and on top of the shortcake.

It was over the top,

it was fabulous,

it was necessary!

Image result for free clip art of strawberry

Plants and Sourdough

Featured

Growing up we always had a garden and a house full of plants.  We grew our own vegetables which required all the weeding and watering that you have to do if you want your fresh veggies to make it to your plate.  Mom had house plants of every variety and they hung, sat or stood where there was space.  Most of my family have green thumbs as a result.  Me?  Not so much.  I’ve tried to maintain house plants.  I had a terrarium at one time (I grew a delicious looking mold in there) and subsequently my plants all died.  Over the years I’ve either taught my plants to swim or I’ve taught them desert survival tactics..  I’ve seen horror on the faces of the staff at all the plant stores when I walk in.  When they ask if they can help me, I say “yes you can, I’m here to buy new victims for my house”.  The last plant I had lasted 6 months on our road trip across Canada and the USA.  Ironically it wasn’t too much or too little water that killed it..

It was pepper..

Yup, I dropped the pepper shaker on it and broke it in half and that was the end of the poor thing.

dead_plant

Have you ever wanted to make sourdough bread?  I have!  I make normal bread all the time, but I have never had the opportunity to get the “starter” that you need to make sourdough bread.  A couple of days ago I was given a starter.  It came in a cute little glass jar.  I was told I should feed it and if I wasn’t going to use it right away it could go in the fridge until I was ready to bake.  Sounds easy!  Ok.  First step is to “feed it”.  I carefully measure water and flour, stir it in vigorously as per the instructions, place it in a bigger jar and I’m good to go.  I wake up in the morning and no surprise.  My starter is DEAD.  I think I just set a killing record.

Did I over water it?  Did I under water it as per my pre-established history?  But I was being so careful!  I followed the instructions precisely!  How is it possible to kill it in less than 24 hours?

I am so confused..

How can I admit to my friend that I killed her gift?

Overnight?

What is wrong with me?

I peer in to the jar to make sure I’m seeing what I’m seeing.  Yup, it’s flat as the Saskatchewan Prairies.  Wait a minute.  What is that smell?  Sniff sniff… that smells like pickles..

I guess using a freshly washed pickle jar wasn’t the best choice I could have made for a new sterile environment for my sourdough starter. Poor thing!.

A happy cheerful pickle throwing his fists up in excitement

There is J0Y in the world.. and that is good!

kids in crosswalk

I stopped at a crosswalk the other day to let a herd of kids and the 2 adults that were with them to cross the street.  The kids were probably 5 years old…

they marched..

they hopped..

they skipped..

they danced..

they waved their arms..

they touched the lines..

they didn’t touch the cracks..

they hurried to keep up with their mates..

they dawdled along knowing they wouldn’t get left behind..

One little girl jubilantly waved at me with all her being, with the biggest widest smile.

The joy, the innocence, the happiness!

I totally needed to see that, I needed to be reminded there is joy in this world!

 

Randoms: April 30 – 2019

I haven’t been very diligent about updating my blog.  Here’s what I’ve been up to.  We’ve been back in Canada for 3 weeks now.  We’ve cleaned out the RV, got caught up on all the laundry that needed doing, reconnected all the electronic doodads, hung our clothes in closets and dresser drawers.  I’ve got over the sticker shock of buying gas, vegetables and beer… (not necessarily in that order)…my my my!!

That’s not the hard part though – the hard part is it’s cold here. Not “Canadian Cold”, but “We’ve been in Arizona too long cold”. I’m happy to say that after 3 weeks I’ve kind of stopped being a “weather whiner”.

I’ve reconnected with some of my friends and attended my first camera club meeting since last fall.  I drove away from the meeting re-inspired.  What a talented group of photographers we have.  So many styles and ideas to try out.  Here’s a few photo’s that I’ve worked on this week.

Tree K75_8508IN

I called this shot:  And behind this tree stands the sun.

Branches K75_8518INThis is a photograph shot up and thru the canopy of the trees.

Branches K75_8519IN

This years new growth!

 

Grass K75_8533IN

And finally I’m laying in the weeds for this shot!

One Year

 

You passed away one year ago today.  That’s one year of sadness, loss, pain, sorrow and regret.  We’ve tried really hard to not be super sad.  You would tell us to ‘get over it’.  You would tell us ‘it is what it is’.  We don’t get to hear your blunt matter of fact voice that held more than a tich of sarcasm most days.  We can’t phone you up whenever we want to tell you how are lives are going, or discuss the things we found funny, ridiculous or interesting this week.  You’re not here to share what you know about family recipes, family history and family stories.  You can’t try to explain how to fix things or drag out your sewing machine and miraculously repair a broken zipper or torn seam.  There are these reasons and a 1,000 more why we have spent the last year with sadness, loss, pain, sorrow and regret.

BUT, (there’s always a but), it has also been a year that our family has worked together, supported each other and got each other to today.  We’ve had a long year!  We’ve laughed.  Worked.  Moved.  Vacationed.  Travelled.  Lived.  Survived.

Becky sat us all out in the sunshine in your yard and dyed bits and pieces of our hair teal blue. We drank more than a few adult beverages and told funny stories about you.  We had our family reunion in July and all those faces, noses and feet that remind us we are related, celebrated our family ties.  They came from everywhere across Canada and gathered to laugh and have a good time and talk about their lives and remember those we’ve lost.  Your son has started a new career on the rails with CN.  He works lots, but he’s home more than he was before.  You would like that.  Your daughter has managed to juggle looking after your house, working from home, and spending time with her friends.  You would like that.  Your brother and sister and I met in Vegas and spent a few days hanging out buying $$ drinks and laughing at how ridiculous things are priced in Sin City.  You would have liked that. Your Powell River family really miss you.  Your friends miss you, but they remember you with a laugh, and they all have shared stories with us.

All our stories and memories that show what a character you were, how you always said what you were thinking, even when you might have been better off to have sugar coated it.  OH WAIT.. THAT was SUGAR COATED!! haha.  Your face gave you away anyway, so no worries, we all knew what you were thinking.

I’m going to start this next year remembering and reminding myself that you lived, not that you died.  I’m going to remember the good times and not the bad.  The laughter and not the sad.  You would like that!

“Drunk Me”

Disclaimer: I have an eye infection.

Result: I am trying to be super vigilant about having clean hands.

After a few beers and wine at Happy Hour, followed by more wine around the fire pit at the trailer… we head inside. I wash my hands in smoking hot water, shut the hot water off and proceed to make a snack for dinner. It’s now 9:30 PM.

Make a snack (which results in a blow up in the microwave).

Clean microwave.  Eat snack.

Decide it’s time for bed. Get off the couch and discover wet rugs, pooling COLD water EVERYWHERE!!

What the hell? Confusion reigns!

ahhhh, the bathroom sink still has the plug in it and although I shut the HOT water off awhile ago, “drunk me” left the cold water tap ON…

Result: bath towels used for clean up are now soaking wet, bath mat is soaking wet, and carpet runner is soaking wet. All are outside and should be dry by mid day tomorrow. And Drunk Me is telling her tale so all may snort, laugh and have a good chuckle to end/start a new day!

Bull-Riding, Beer and a Bar!

Image result for pictures of bull riders clip art

We were looking for some local activity.  Something different to do.  Something fun!

We found just what we were looking for:  Bull-Riding, Beer, Bar!

There’s a bar in Coolidge, Arizona called The Galloping Goose.  Attached to the bar is a bull riding ring, and on the first and third Friday nights they have a local bull riding competition.  We drove over there, parked, paid the admission fee, grabbed a bleacher seat and waited for the show to begin.

It was Ugly Christmas Sweater night.  Spectators, Employees, Bull Riders – all wearing sweaters with loud colors, bows, baubles, flashing lights, garland, you name it, they were wearing it.  Young ladies making goo goo eyes at the young men and little boys making goo goo eyes at the young men who were riding the bulls.

No gathering would be complete without a 50/50 draw.  We purchased a strip of tickets and we and the others who gathered waited in anticipation for the draw.

Earlier in the day there was a horrible freeway accident near Marana, Arizona.  Traffic was backed up and delayed for most of the afternoon.  The trailer hauling the bulls was caught in the backlog as were some of the bull riders that were trying to make it there for the event.  This resulted in a shortened program and general confusion for the organizers.  You could tell that they were doing their best to put on a show for the crowd.  It was announced that the 50/50 draw would be delayed and drawn in the bar after the bands first intermission. In to the bar we went.  It was fun watching the people dance, sing, playing pool, laughing with their friends.  Lots of flashy belt buckles, cowboy hats and well worn jeans.  We were definitely part of the local crowd.

Then IT happened!

THE 50/50 DRAW!

and WE WON!

Here we are, the happy winners!  It’s noisy in there, it’s dark in there, and it’s getting late.  We have to drive back to the RV Park, so we delightedly accept a Christmas Sock of $$ and head out.  We leave the bar, start the vehicle and head out.  As we are driving away we pull the $$ out of the sock…

THERE’S $12 IN THERE!

YES – TWELVE DOLLARS!

12!

We can’t go back now!  We’ve walked away!  We’ve driven away! No one will believe us!

We dejectedly drive home.  The glow from the sweaters is just a memory for us now.

The smell of the bulls is fresh in our minds… we feel like they smell!

What can be done?

A ha – I know – I will contact the organizer and explain our situation.

It’s close to midnight now, it’s been a long day for the organizers, they’ve obviously been under a lot of stress all day.  I found them on Facebook and sent them a message:

We were at the Bull Riding tonight. We won the 50/50.  When we got home we opened the envelope. There was $12 in there. There is no way that this is 50% of the amount raised.Can you help?We don’t mind supporting local events but this seems kind of crazy 🙂

NOW THIS IS WHERE THE STORY GETS SO AWESOME!

Within 18 minutes they replied that there had been a mix-up with the envelopes and that they would make it right for us!

After a day that I imagine they just want to forget.  The stress.  The waiting.  The stress of waiting.  They dealt with it.  They fixed it.  They made it right!

DirtWidow Bull Company – Casa Grande –  Making it right!

YOUR BULLS ARE MEAN BUT YOU ARE SO FREAKIN AWESOME!