Share Your World 2015 #1

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It is always fun to answer the questions that Cee poses for the weekly Share Your World so since I am still home from work enjoying my final day of vacation I will play along.

How do you get rid of pesky phone calls from telemarketers?

Most times I simply do not answer the phone. In fact I ask my husband on a pretty frequent basis why it is we still have a land line because NO ONE we know calls us on it. If I do answer, usually because the same number has called 20 times in a row, I try to be polite and simply say I am not interested but sometimes I do just hang up.

What are you a “natural” at doing?

This question is kind of difficult to answer. I am not sure if I am “natural” at it or simply gotten better as I have matured but I would say making others feel better, reducing fear and anxiety, showing concern for what concerns them.

How often do you get a haircut?

Every 5-6 weeks. It is guaranteed time for me to see my very busy daughter(she is my hairdresser). Now that I don’t color, only cut, my time in the chair is quite brief.

What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the word “fun”?

Usually good friends, food, beer and music.

Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?

Oh so many things! Number 1 would be having time off from my job to spend time at home with my husband and family. This week I look forward to prayer meeting and my time alone with God.

Have a great week everyone.

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Fall Daisy

 

 

Living Life Joyfully

Read Write Hear

New and Scary Part Two

One of the joys of blogging is the “discovery” process. Let me explain. In my most recent blog post I shared my adventures on the ski slope. As I wrote I must reflect, pulling out what was memorable and weaving words together to make it at least somewhat interesting for the world to read. So in the writing process I am able to relive the moment, examining the details. As I immerse myself in the memory I can almost feel the cold air on my face and feel the slippery skis on my feet. It is in my opinion an unexpected joy that writing has given me.

Today’s memory is of our second day of adventure. All of our children(well the 5 who live on the east coast) have now arrived at the cabin. As a funny aside everyone arrived separately each having been provided directions to our weekend retreat via email. Well as it turned out as each person arrived there was never another car in the driveway. So each of them, including my daughter who arrived in the middle of the night, had to go on faith that it was the right house. We all got a laugh out of this when it was discovered!

Anyway, I digress. It’s Saturday, the sun is shining for the first time in days and we have reservations for a Zip-lining adventure. The resort can accommodate 8 people at a time so our entire group cannot play but those who aren’t able have great alternatives. So after a hearty home-cooked breakfast we all head out.

We have been told that it will be cold so we all have tons of winter gear on…I now understand why little kids don’t enjoy going outdoors in the cold…it is a lot of extra clothing which makes it hard to move and weighs quite a bit too. As we near the resort I begin to feel quite anxious about this adventure. What on earth was I thinking? These zip lines are high up and I am not always a fan of heights. But I am committed so I squash those butterflies with some self-talk.

Once in the lodge we meet our guides for the afternoon. We all get into our harnesses, helmets, and gloves and head out onto the lift. I am telling myself this is going to be fun. I have all my children with me, the sun is shining, and I am doing something new and scary!

December 2014 Brettonwoods New Hampshire Zip-lining Adventure

There we all are about to begin our adventure.

Our first step is a brief run that includes the basics of zip-lining: sitting, holding on and the all important braking, oh and let’s not forget how to pull yourself in if you brake too soon and end up a distance from the landing point! My combat to fear is to go first, so off I go. But keep in mind that I can touch the ground and the run is only about 10 feet…but still I do it.

This mastered we are off, trekking through some beautiful terrain to our first zip. The day is truly glorious. The sun is bright and the air crisp. Fresh snow is everywhere. Truly picture perfect. I thank God as I amble through the knee deep snow for such a beautiful day with my family.

We arrive at our first Zip. Clip on and off I go!

Exhilarating!

The runs get progressively longer and higher over the next couple of hours zipping above the tree line, skiers and snowboarders below our suspended selves. We walk over some high in the tree rope bridges(this I can do without) and even rappel a few times(this I really like…I can see some rock climbing in my future). Our time passes all too fast and before you know it we are headed back to the lodge to turn in our harness.

What fun we all had. Hopefully one day soon I will have some of the video feed that Emily’s boyfriend got from his little video camera thing(not sure what this is called, maybe a go pro).

Great day, great adventure, fun memories.

Me(back left) Emily(back right) and Jessica(front and center)

Me(back left) Emily(back right) and Jessica(front and center)

 

New and Scary Things Part One

A few weeks back I wrote about my plans to do one scary or new thing every week for a year. My intention is to blog about those crazy scary new things as often as life permits. So I thought I would begin by sharing my adventures from my birthday weekend with my family(click the link if you missed the post).

We headed out early Thursday afternoon. My favorite guy had once again done amazing feats by fitting all our snow adventure gear into our little Prius still leaving room for us! The drive was pretty. Clear blue skies and lots of mountains. We began to see snow on the ground about an hour into Vermont…a good sign since we needed snow to play. Four uneventful hours later we pulled into the driveway of our weekend retreat cabin. It was absolutely lovely! My friend had decked the halls with a huge tree in the main living room and lots of little lights adorned the outside evergreens. I cannot say enough wonderful things about the home that my friend so generously let us stay in, a true blessing.

We enjoyed an evening in front of the wood burning stove and went to bed early to be ready for our first big adventure.

Friday morning arrived and so had one of our daughters and her boyfriend. So after an easy breakfast and putting the necessary ingredients into the crock pot for tonight’s chili we headed out for the mountains. I had called ahead so we knew there had been some fresh snow on the mountain overnight, apparently perfect for the snow-lovers. I planned to take a ski lesson while everyone else got there snowboards moving for the first time of the season.

My lesson started at 1:00. I was a bit nervous to tell the truth. I had only skied once in my life when I was about 14 and while memorable it was not a great experience. My instructor for the next 1.5 hours made his way over and asked a few questions about me and why I wanted to learn now. He said my yoga practice would help with skiing…I could only hope this was true. We waited for a bit as he expected another newbie to join us but in the end it was just me. Not a bad deal at all…a private lesson for $45.00!

So he taught me how to walk in my boots and after he felt I had mastered this task I instructed me on how to get the skies on.

Whoa…those things were slippery! I truly could not believe just how slippery…what was I expecting!?

Anyway, he had me master some basic moves and then proceeded to the bunny hill.

It was okay. I didn’t run any of those little kids over and I managed to stay upright. I guess I did better than I thought because soon enough he had me in a ski lift climbing up the mountain!

Yikes! Now I was scared. I knew the lift did not stop so I needed to jump off and remain standing.

Whew, I did it. Now we would begin our (hopefully) slow descent down the slope. I wasn’t doing too badly. He was teaching me how to steer.

Pretty good.

Not so bad.

Then I started to pick up some speed. Oh no, now what.

On the ground.

I realized he didn’t tell me how to get up so I just waited.

Once back up I tried it again. Wow, I cannot believe how fast I am going.

I cannot really control my speed by turning so I just fall again.

Get up. Now I am cranking. Somehow I manage to get all the way down the hill. I don’t take anyone out and I remain standing. Miracle!

My instructor makes me go up on the lift again. Now I am not gonna lie here, I was getting pretty tired by this point. It was physical as well as mental work just to keep standing.

But I managed to get off that lift successfully for the second time that day, woohoo!

It takes a while. Several more falls. But eventually I make it down. He said I recover well. That is the yoga—good balance! Lesson over. He suggested I go right back up again. I want to go find my family though…not too confident I can make it down alone.

As I walk into the lodge they are all there. I raise my arms in the air like an Olympic champion.

One scary thing DONE!

 

 

First Book of the Year 2015

First Book of the Year 2015Sheila over at Book Journey is hosting a First Book of the Year 2015 party and I have decided to attend. Hop on over and check out the other book lovers who are rockin’ in the New Year and discover the next great read on your list.

I have cevery dayhosen the book every day by david levithan. A friend told me about it a few months back and I added it to my reading list then, given the concept I thought it an excellent selection to ring in the new year.

It is a book written for youths, which I discovered I read quite a lot of…guess I am youthful! Anyway, the protagonist in the book, who’s name is A, wakes up each morning in a new person’s body. In other words A is someone else every day of the year. I thought the concept intriguing. Imagine waking up in the body of your son or daughter, your best friend, mother, father, sister, boss, whoever. Having access to their thoughts and memories for a day. How much insight would you have?!  No spoilers here, I will not be giving you any of the details of how A interacts with the world, you can read it for yourself if you want to find out. I will say that the book is not what I had hoped it would be. It is still intriguing but I would have developed this story very differently if I were the author…just saying. I haven’t finished it yet but it has been a fairly fast read and I am interested to see where the story is going.

Have you read it? Let me know your thoughts if you have. What book is sitting on your bedside stand on January 1, 2015?

Happy Reading in the New Year of 2015

The Last Day 2014

It was not my intention when I sat down to spend some quiet time with God this morning to take a year-end inventory however, if I have learned anything in the years I have walked with the Lord it is that it is not really about me and what I want but what He has for me.

My pastor has made the comment to take the lesson and leave the luggage. In order to do this we need time to reflect. I believe that God is constantly talking to us. There are always lessons, miracles, wisdom to be gleaned from life experiences however we need to take the time to examine life as it occurs not simply let it pass by. I have tried to be more consistent with this in 2014. I still have much opportunity to improve but so what?!

So as sat this morning quietly reading and sipping my coffee I asked myself what have been the most important lessons learned this year? How have I grown? Where do I need to focus as January rounds the corner because where my focus is will get my attention.

Lessons learned(in no particular order):

Trust God. He has a plan. That plan is better than mine. He will provide the plan when I am ready.

This may seem like a no brainer but all too often I still go about my life doing what I want and hoping it is what God wants too. You can read a past post here is you would like to see how I learned this lesson. The part about the plan is revelatory(for me). I know that things always happen in His perfect time yet this morning He whispered that the plan is revealed when I am ready. Hmm…a partnership, co-laborer in His kingdom?!

Write things down. I remember better when it has been written. Things that happen during the day are important. People and interactions matter, so make notes.

Keep a journal. This is a place to record your thoughts and elaborate on feelings. One of my favorite quotes is “thoughts are disentangled as they pass through our fingerstips”~ Dawson Trotman.

I have taken to writing the names of each patient I interact with during the day. It helps me to remember who they are but more importantly I use it as a prayer reminder lifting each one up throughout the day.

Only this moment is guaranteed, the next is not. Live life with purpose. Be intentional in everything. Set goals. Take risks. Give Glory to God. Say things that are important. Be sure to give time to what is important to me—this should be people(note to self). Love everyone. Always. But especially when you don’t feel like it.

Enough said.

Happy New Year Everyone! Praying that 2015 brings you love, joy and peace.

~ Paige

 

I ate brussels sprouts (and lived)

I have read that you either love or hate brussels sprouts. I have never been a fan of the miniature cabbage heads. The last time I “tried” them was 2 Thanksgivings ago when my sister brought some to join the feast. I took a “no thank you serving”, that is what we call it on our house when you really don’t like or want to try something new. Anyway, I ate a couple but just didn’t like them.

Last week when I picked up my first load of veggies from the CSA brussels sprouts were among the bins, the sign read “take two stalks”. Now you don’t have to take anything you do not want but I am paying for it so if figure what the heck, my husband likes them so I can fix for him. So I came home with my 2 stalks.

First I needed to research how to keep these little cabbage heads. A quick google search revealed that removing from the stalk and placing in a bowl in the fridge is all that is needed to keep the sprouts fresh for a couple of weeks.

When you get ready to use them you peel off the outer skins and cut the stalks off and you are good to go.

Next I needed to find a recipe that might change my mind. I scoured Pinterest. I finally found a recipe that sounded fantastic. It called for roasted brussels sprouts and parsnips(also part of the weekly distribution) and a lemon tahini sauce. I had everything I needed to make this right in the kitchen so I decided to give it a whirl.

Trimming the sprouts was fairly time consuming but once in the oven to roast you have time to prepare the tahini sauce. The recipe says that you “drizzle” the sauce over the veggies. My sauce was too thick to drizzle so I just dipped into it but I could have mixed it into the veggies.

So what was my reaction? These were quite tasty even without the sauce. I will make them again for sure. If you are looking for a new way to prepare the sprouts or like me have them on the do not eat list I suggest giving this recipe a try.

“Brussels sprouts are the nerdy girl in high school that got hot.” – Jared Fried

Share Your World- 2014

 

Share your world

 

Joining in the fun hosted by Cee’s photography who I truly hope gets better quickly!

This weeks questions are:

What is your favorite toppings on pizza?

I prefer my pizza white, no sauce. My favorite toppings would likely be listed as spinach and mushrooms although there are several other toppings that would go on the short list. Thin crust, double cut. Ooh yah I can smell it now.

I want to learn more about …

So many things really but for the purposes of this post I will say photography. Perhaps in the near future I will have a chance to take a course.

What are three places you’ve enjoyed visiting?

Tough question really as there are so many things that tantalize my senses when it comes to visiting new places. Probably the most beautiful place I have seen so far is Sedona AZ. We had no idea how glorious the drive would be as we headed south from the Grand Canyon.

I thoroughly enjoyed my trip to Disney World earlier this year. I hadn’t been since I was a little girl, about a year or two after MK opened. Not one single thing I didn’t enjoy.

The English pub in Boston and one the first cruise we ever took. Both have left lasting memories in my mind of great music with the entire pub singing along. Can’t beat that!

Do you prefer eating the frosting of the cake or the cupcake first?I am not a big cupcake fan but if I do eat one I just bite in, frosting and cake together.

Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up?

The help I was able to offer to a new patient who was in so much pain on Monday; by Friday she was like a new woman. I felt like I witnessed a miracle.

A week without homework—class is done!

Community Supported Agriculture

 

Photo credit Provider Farm

 

Earlier this year I submitted my name to the wait list of an local CSA. I was excited when last month I received an email informing me that I had the option to buy into the winter and upcoming summer shares.

So what exactly is community supported agriculture?

A CSA is a partnership between the farmer and the shareholder. The purchase of a share is an investment in the upcoming farming season.

What’s in a share?

The CSA I have joined provides organically grown vegetables and herbs. The shareholder can purchase the size share that is most suitable for their family size. Weekly distribution will vary depending on crops in season.

So why join a CSA?

The cost and convenience of purchasing a share from a locally established organic farm makes sense to me. I get the freshest possible produce, grown locally. All of this decreases the cost of transportation reducing pollution. Plus the farm employees local people. It is WIN-WIN-WIN.

What did my first winter share contain?

On Friday I picked up my first winter share of produce. Unlike some programs I can actually pick and choose what I like. I went home with three full grocery bags, recyclable of course. My bags were filled with carrots, watermelon radishes, parsnips, onions, garlic, winter squash, brussel sprouts, cabbage, plus greens—kale, spinach, lettuce, leeks, and bok choy, all being grown in unheated green houses.

Photo credit Provider Farm

On Saturday we made fresh eggs with leeks and spinach for a late breakfast and corned beef with carrots and cabbage for dinner. Completely fabulous food with farm fresh produce in December. Plus it gives me an excuse to try out some new Pinterest recipes.

Below you will find the recipe of the week. I look forward to making this to accompany a farm fresh chicken.

Recipe of the Week:

Maple roasted carrots

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. carrots
  • 1 tbs. oil
  • 1 tbs. butter
  • 2 tbs. maple syrup

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425 F.
Chop carrots into long matchsticks. Drizzle with oil and toss to coat. Arrange in single layer on baking sheet.
Roast carrots for 15 minutes, then remove from oven and toss with butter and maple syrup.
Roast for another 5 to 10 minutes until carrots are browned but not burned.
Stir with spatula to coat with glaze and serve.

Credit:

Serving Up the Harvest by Andrea Chesman