Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Backyard Bottles

Art thrives on a difference of opinion.
My treasure is your junk sort of thing.  Life would be dull if we all agreed.

Robert Genn

For more inspirational photos this week, please visit: Wordless Wednesday or Image-in-ing

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Tourist vs Traveler

Recently I researched the definition of these two terms.  According to
Tourist is a person who travels for pleasure, usually sightseeing and staying in hotels.
Traveler is a person who travels especially habitually

At first blush, there does not seem to be much of a difference except the tourist is associated more with sightseeing (seeing places and/or objects of interest) - and the traveler seems to travel to foreign lands on a more frequent basis.

According to these definitions, I could be classified as both.  I enjoy seeing places of interest and staying in hotels ... and I like to travel as often as finances allow (which will hopefully be more habitual now that I am retired).

So I researched a bit further.  A Google query indicated several in the travel industry do not consider these terms synonymous, and they are quick to offer their opinion.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Week in Review: August 21, 2016

This week my granddaughter started kindergarten. She obviously takes after her Olly when she declared after the first day: Why we can't go to school everyday, even through spring break?! 


I finished The Quilter's Apprentice, the first book in the Elm Street Quilters series. While it's not a cozy mystery, it is a cozy story, and I enjoyed meeting the members of the The Tangled Web Quilters, as well as the protagonist, Sarah McClure and her employer, Mrs. Compson, a tough old broad on the outside with a kind wounded heart on the inside.

I'm a quilter wannabe, so I found references to different quilt patterns interesting, but sometimes written in too much detail to hold my interest. I did enjoy reading about their quilting time, however. These sessions provide opportunity to connect with others in an intimate way. Family stories are shared and friends listen with empathetic ears. There is also a spirit of camaraderie that I don't see often. "Many hands make light work" is evident when everyone comes together to help assemble Sarah's surprise anniversary quilt.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Totoro Family Recipes: Fudge Brownie Pie

Today is National Chocolate Pecan Pie Day.

When I first discovered such a holiday... I immediately remembered a Chocolate Nut Pie my mom used to make. It was never considered a family favorite - so I'm not sure my children ever tasted it - but I remember the novelty of eating a circular brownie and thought I might share the recipe.

However, I wasn't quite sure where to find it. I knew Mom frequently used River Road Recipe cookbooks, so I began there. No luck.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Backyard Statue

We should all do what, in the long run, gives us joy,
even if it is only picking grapes or sorting the laundry.

~ E. B. White

For more inspirational photos this week, please visit: Wordless WednesdayImage-in-ing, and Through My Lens

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

I Simply MUST Travel

My French "sister" and me
circa 1977
Since the age of eight, I have had a desire to travel.  That was the year I began French lessons, and I remember visiting my parents' friends whose son had just returned from his junior year abroad.  Looking at his pictures and postcards of Paris, I vowed that one day I would have the same experience.

In high school that dream came true. I participated in a three-week trip abroad where I stayed with a French family in Arcachon, France. This only whet my appetite, however. I desired to visit other European countries and experience them as a native:  living in the local neighborhoods, eating the customary cuisine, and speaking their language.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Week in Review: August 14, 2016

For many here in the Midwest, the first day of school is quickly approaching. Normally I would be caught up in excited anticipation, but this year, I fully embrace retirement.

On a somewhat related note... Did I hear McDonald's will start offering Pumpkin Spice lattes at the end of the month?! As much as I long for cooler temperatures, I'm not quite ready for fall. How about you?

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Totoro Family Recipes: Pasta Salad

This recipe means summer in the Totoro household. And it is the only salad recipe my young children would request.

The kids loved the combination of pasta, pepperoni, and mozzarella.

I was thrilled they ate a few vegetables, such as carrots and broccoli.

And the colorful dish is as much a feast for the eyes as for the tummy.

When all three kids lived at home, the recipe made enough to feed hungry teenagers and provide a few leftovers. Now that we are empty-nesters, I need to remember to cut the recipe in half. Otherwise, we would eat pasta salad for a week!

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Backyard Angel

An inheritance from Mom's vast angel collection
For he will order his angels to protect you wherever you go
~ Psalm 91:11 (TLB)

For more inspirational photos this week, please visit: Wordless WednesdayImage-in-ing, and Through My Lens

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

How to Write an Essay Others Want to Read

This will be the final post in my How to Journal series.

The last few posts focused on leaving a legacy ... using journaling notes, old photographs, and memorabilia to craft family stories that preserve our values and milestone moments for future generations.

The two most common complaints I hear from those who want to develop a journaling routine are:
  1. I don't know what to write
  2. I don't know how to write

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