Saturday, October 30, 2010

Halloween Joy

I'm missing this.. and this house.... and these little beans....
So, tomorrow I will pack my bags and go down to Pleasant Hill to visit with my family for a few days. I will give out candy for Halloween while my grand babies go out trick or treating with their Mommy and Daddy.
I just love this holiday! No matter what anyone says about the implications of this night and how we are worshiping the dark side, etc, etc, etc. I only have to say..... Lighten up. It's the one time of the year that your children can dress up and be someone else.. and you can be a kid again. Let your child see the generosity of others. If you think that it has to be productive take a little box with you and collect change for UNICEF or some other worthy cause. But, go meet your neighbors. Say hello, introduce yourself and give the evening a chance to work it's magic. Show your children what "neighborhood" is all about. Show them  less fear and a lot more "lets have a little fun". Life is short. Being an adult is a long journey.
When was the last time you were this excited....
When was the last time you carved a pumpkin?
Does that pumpkin look evil to you? I think not....

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Drama on the Deck

I didn't mean to make this Praying Mantis so unhappy.
I have had this planter for years and it never crossed my mind that the design on it would become such an issue....
 She tried to climb the side of the planter and reach the smaller images of her kind. This poor Mantid was so frustrated that she finally collapsed on the porch deck and then,resting for a minute, she looked up at the drawings on the planter one last time. I could just hear her saying, " It's hard enough trying to find a mate around here without cave drawings that look real. I have business to take care of. I have needs."
I watched her as she walked across the deck and climbed onto the rose bush. She looked so tired.

This morning she was on the Chrysanthemums in the planter near the porch steps. She looked better. Must have found what she was looking for...
I think she is a Pacific Ground Mantid. Do you know that the female often devours the male while mating? What a dilemma that must be for the males.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Thought for Wednesday....It's just one of those days.

"Strength is the ability to break a chocolate bar into four pieces with your bare hands and then eat just one of those pieces" ~ Judith Viorst~
..... Oh well.


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Post Collection

What a lovely thing it is to have a small gift arrive in the mail...  the snail mail. You know... the metal box that you have been receiving all the bills and political hogwash in lately. We have a rural box out on the highway, a mile and a quarter from the house. I worry about people taking things in the middle of the night but I guess there are more honest folks in the world that I give credit for. We have only had a theft once in 13 years.
So, on Monday, the prospector made a run to get the mail in the afternoon and , low and behold, I got a small gift and a REAL letter from my friend in Michigan. This would be the childhood friend that I lost for almost 50 years. The one who was cute and blond.... and made crop tops out of her sweaters before they were in the stores. Her name is Dawn. A post about her and her early fashion statements here.
So, she sent me a little package with a LETTER and a really wonderful gift that she found at a farm/orchard market where they buy fresh apple cider.....
Happy Goat  goat milk soap with a "lovely lilac" fragrance. Oooou!, does it smell good.
The letter is filled with stories of a trip that she and her husband took in their camper for a weekend.... two old mansions in Muskegon, the market where they got the apple cider and the goat soap, and a casino  at Manistee. What fun! Then she had to tell me about a big antiques mall in Lidington and the wonderful cranberry glass that she bought; the Lake Michigan shoreline and a little village called Pentwater with MORE antique shops. Then she came home and sauteed some sea scallops for dinner. I was ready to get on a plane and fly to Michigan right then and there. This girl needs a blog. She's always doing trips like this. She needs a "travelblog".It was like I took the trip with her.
Are you reading this girlfriend. TRAVELBLOG???? You could do it.
So,write someone a letter.... a real letter. It's so nice to receive one. Even if Dawn hadn't sent the soap with the letter it would have been a wonderful surprise. There's something about getting something in the mail that is personal and just for you. It makes you feel special. Try just one. It's a guaranteed "feel good" for both parties.

OK! New magazine on the supermarket rack. It's from Hobby Farms and it's all about CHICKENS.
Someone really loves chickens. This is not only an interesting magazine with great articles but the titles are wonderful. The "Coop Corner", "A Nest of Her Own" and "Surviving Fowl Weather". How about "eggs-cellent" winter tips? Makes you want to read the articles doesn't it?. Pulls you right in.
And then.... "The Incredible Edible Egg", the recipe section by (and I have to believe she gave herself this name) September Morn. Honestly.... she's a farmer and dog trainer in Shelton, Washington. I just love that  name. This is the Recipe Roundup section and the article is called The Eggs and I. You have to buy the magazine to get the recipes but I'll tell you that they are "eggstraordinary" recipes that are worth the $5.99 price of the magazine. Try to find it . I found it at Raleys.

And I leave you with this discovery as I drove up our road to the house a few days ago.
Isn't this amazing? There it was, growing right out of an oak tree. If I looked it up right it's called a Sulfur Shelf or Chicken of the Woods ( free ranging on a tree). It says that it's edible when young but causes gastrointestinal distress and can be poisonous depending on what tree it's attached to. Good grief. Why take a chance. They have "safe" ones at the grocery store. That's why I don't pick and cook mushrooms around here. I just don't trust them or myself. I have an uncle who picks them and cooks them all the time. I trust him.... kind of.

Funny line in my mushroom book....All That the Rain Promises and More.... A hip pocket guide to western mushrooms by David Arora.
"Conclusion: If you eat and enjoy this mushroom, always cook it thoroughly and do not serve it to lawyers, landlords, employers, policemen, pitbull owners, or others whose good will you cherish."
I think I will leave this  pretty fungi right were it is.....