Sunday, April 29, 2012

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Dog Therapy

loving grandpa
peacefully eating

Did some guinea pig care and they got extra parsley. They love it! :)
tea time with rilakkuma and friends

Have a good weekend!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Yummy Turkey Soup

I had baked a turkey a few days ago...thawed out one of my freebies...and today, I softened it up in the pot to make some sort of soup. I was a little nervous but I thought I'd play it by ear. I've made many wonderful soups over the years from recipes and have tried some very yummy one from friends and family.

Well, I decided to take a bit of some of my favorites. I decided to do a Mexican style soup like I had at a friends party in HS with a touch of Romanian edge with the parsley.

After the turkey cooled in the pot, I pulled apart the meat and bones. I used the water from the turkey stock and added dried onions, 2-3 dashes of salt, about 1/2 cup of lemon juice, a few dashes of garlic powder, chili powder & cumin. I cut up parsley (about a handful), celery (3 stalks), carrots (3 carrots) and about 1 and half cups of white rice. I added 2 cans of hominy with some of the juice. This is a large pot, mind you.

I boiled the water up for about 5-8 minutes, lowered the heat and covered for 20 minutes. I'm glad I added the rice and hominy as an after thought. The soup came out really good. You could add your choice of meat or go entirely meatless as well. I was thinking of adding some falafi mix to make little meatless meatballs. That would be an interesting touch. However, I think the parsley was good as a fresh herb and I didn't want to overwhelm the seasonings. If I took out the cumin and chili powder it could be a Greek style soup. Maybe served with a side of plain yogurt? Sounds yummy for next soup experiment.

Turkey Soup Recipe Mexican and Romanian Style

Left over Turkey boiled in water (large pot)
2 cans hominy
1/2 cup lemon juice
Large dash of garlic powder
Large dash of dried onions
Large dash of cumin
3 small dashes of salt
1 1/2 cup of rice
chopped parsley
3 carrots, diced
3 celery stalks, diced

Boil the turkey, cool and remove bones. Use the turkey stock for the soup base. Add all the ingredients and bring to a boil for 5 minutes. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes with lid on the pot. Enjoy!

Lenka - Don't Let Me Fall (with lyrics)

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Packed to the top Tuesday


Rainy day walk
It feels like since 6am, I've been running around doing everything...Yesterday, was actually worse. Today is much, much better for several reasons...basically, connecting and communicating has been accomplished and I'm happy about that. But it was a really stressful weekend with added anxiety.

Stitch
Then, I volunteered putting together the church newsletter. I'm going to be getting more responsibility with working on the church website (wow!) and doing communication with the congregation. I'm glad to be able to do something for our church and be a help. :)

Harrison is getting to the destroy and conquer stage...the Stitch stage as I call it. Do you remember Lilo and Stitch? Remember when the little blue alien made a mock up of San Francisco and then stomps and crashes it away? That's Harry.



I feel exhausted because of the stuff we did today...walkies, grocery shopping, laundry, hunting for a lost toy saw, the cold weather, my sprained knee, driving kids around back and fourth 4 times a day and making/cleaning food/home. I'm tired of even thinking. The good thing is I did start to paint a little but I'm no were near what I wanted to do art wise. I did sew a bunch of clothing alterations and the kids have pants that fit again. :) Basically, I found out how to alter the waist of pants...and did some for my self too.

happy hamstersI finally swept the first floor (couldn't yesterday because of extreme knee pain...Just Dance moves I overly danced, I guess) and found that nobody had helped me. Geesh. I even asked them/him to last night as I stumbled to bed early because of pain. sigh...

Today was better in this regards. I can walk upstairs pretty well. Just putting/tying shoes hurts like heck when I cross my leg over my knee. Hopefully, this is a mild strain and I'll feel better soon.

There is a church meeting and after that I have a meeting later this week in the morning. I'm tired thinking about all that. My brother's b-day is this week. :)

I just want to fall asleep for 2 hrs but that's not going to happen. I need to go make a salad for dinner. This sounds exciting.

Have a good week. :)

Monday, April 23, 2012

Snow/rain, lunch time, baking a turkey...

So, I thought it was genius to start baking the turkey at 9 in the morning. We have one of those free turkeys saved from way back during Thanksgiving. Thank goodness for a deep chest freezer...really helps on saving things when buying bulk or for the free thanksgiving turkey. I defrosted this turkey for 3 days and it was finally ready to bake. Now, I'm counting down till it's done. Of course, the house smells phenomenal. All the animals are being extra good...I just know I'll be hounded once I take this thing out of the oven. We're having a Thanksgiving theme for dinner tonight. lol

I've been doing the "Just Dance 3" nearly every day or every other day. Well, last night I must have over did a dance move as my knee feels like the muscle is weak and in pain. sigh. I'll have to wrap it. My knee only hurts when I got upstairs or walk quickly. I thought I was getting fit but I guess I shouldn't push my self too much.

Things are stable with dad. He's still at the hospital, supposed to get out, I believe, today. I feel really tired about everything, emotionally. I know he's doing better...took 12 or more steps forward and back. The therapist said the more he does his old favorite things, the more of his memory will come back. This is very positive. I told my mom to give him a disconnected phone to use...he loved talking on the phone...might help with his memory.

If I think about all of what has happened, I will become too overwhelmed. I'm glad I can do my art and have my family to take care of. I'm also grateful for doing the volunteer work Jon and I have been doing at our church as well. It's good to have these things to do and allow your self to worry so much. Believe me, I know how to worry. But for now, I'm staying positive, praying and hopeful.

I've got to make some time to find some photos of my aunt and create a memorial for her. It makes me sad to know she is gone but relieved she didn't suffer too long.

It's snowing and cold over here. Jon's mom made chili yesterday and I wish I had the parts to make my own version of it for lunch. She adds green bell peppers. I love that. :)

Okay, I've got to check on that turkey. Lunch time is calling my name. I read somewhere that some men think it's immature that women use the "LoL" (laughs out loud) acronym in their writing. First of all, it's not immature...just a way of expressing one's self. 2nd, it's very controlling of the person to be annoyed by a form of expression. 3rd, it gives me a bad impression of the person being annoyed by emotions. It's so silly to be annoyed by this and mean spirited to call women who do write "lol" as juvenile. I use "lol" when I actually do laugh out loud. I don't know why this bothered me...I guess it's the sense that men aren't supposed to express themselves and women express themselves "too much". Funny, how if we're not aware of it, we fall into stereo types. ah, well...

Saturday, April 21, 2012

My sis, brother, me and Strawberry (guinea pig)

I was looking at my photos on flickr and found this one of my brother, sister and me (with the guinea pig, of course).

Happy Heart

Happy Heart by Emilyannamarie
Happy Heart, a photo by Emilyannamarie on Flickr.

I made these a few weeks ago, well, closer to a month, probably. I started to photograph some finally and added them to Etsy. I like how they came out and I have more I plan to list.

I also created some new things on zazzle with my artwork. I'm getting the hang of zazzle...it's fun! :)

I had Jon cut a bunch of wood for me and I sanded about 15 pieces. So, now I'll have some new things to create. I've got some ideas and can't wait to try it.

I think I'll put more things on etsy during the week. I've just been so, so overwhelmed by things. Typical life things, I know. Who isn't overwhelmed or stressed? I do mommy things, art things, volunteering things, and cleaning things...I could go into more details but it would seem sort of like bragging (which I'm not trying to do) or complaining (which I am sort of doing...lol).

I notice I don't stress out as much if I just deal with what I have to do (which I did). So, I feel better. I'm glad I do get help from my loved ones...even if half the cereal is spilled on the floor and the dogs track in sand or the house is a mess. Just doing a little to help each other out is good.

well, that's that. I don't really know why I just wrote that other than to write something. I'm tired. lol

Friday, April 20, 2012

roses

I'm sad. I'm trying not to be but it seems like the more I try not to, the worse it is. These are Passion Roses. I got them for  Easter and because I love the color. They made me think of my aunt. I was searching for pictures of her and only found 1 or 2 so far. There is one I especially want to find but I don't know where it is. It's of me and my sister wearing holly hobby print skirts my mom made and she is standing next to us. That's how I remember my aunt...she liked to dress up and be photographed. She was very fun and lively like that. I just remembered I have some pictures of her on my family collage I did 10 yrs ago. I'll photograph that and enlarge it.

Just did some gardening

Or intensive raking of old branches. I'm exhausted...well, my arms and wrists hurt, that is. I'm glad it's done now. For some reason, I thought that if I put all the branches I trimmed off the old Christmas tree on the ground, it would become mulch. Not quite. Oh, well. I cleaned it up now. :) I found this recipe for a Summer Soup. It sounds really good. I need something comforting after all this emotional stuff. Plus, my dad pulled out his feeding tube last night and was rushed to the ER. I honestly think he thought it was a telephone because before I hung up talking to my mom I swear he said "Phone, here, Phone here". I think he wanted to try and talk on the phone! So, I'll ask my mom to give him a phone (not connected or connected depending on if any one is available to talk). The therapist said the more he does his old behaviors more of his memory and ability to function will come back. This is very hopeful. In other news, the kids Learning fair went off really well. The kids worked hard on their projects and Jon got some good photos. I was too tired to go and Harrison was being crabby. I'll post pictures soon. There is a new format for blogger and I'm tempted to start over, again. I hope I won't mess up things too much but I would like to see some things change and have access to people's links right on my page. We shall see. I feel sort of dulled...maybe it's the emotional stuff or allergies. Maybe both. I just exhausted and ready to sleep in on the weekend. I think it was odd how I felt so emotional the day after my aunt passed away. I guess I felt something then. I also feel badly about what I wrote about my cousin not bringing her back to CA. I need to remember it costs money to transport people and if they are very ill, it's impossible. So, I forgive her. I'm also glad my dad did get to see her one more time. Life is so chaotic sometimes. But that is life as one of my church friends said. I like his attitude. Oh, and if there are some things that aren't spelled right, please forgive me as I can't find the spell checker.

Time to say goodbye - Andrea Bocelli & Sara Brightman

The Goodbye Song for Children

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Good-bye to my Aunt Dimka

She left us yesterday evening. I'm glad she didn't have to suffer long and is at peace. It makes me sad to think she was all alone in away from family and friends. But I know she is with loved ones now and that is reassuring.

It seems so fast that some one is here and then, they are not. I need to put together a memorial for her.

got off on the wrong blog

Skunk Encounter II

I was looking at some art, the art directed me to some website/on-line magazine. I clicked on their blog section and boy, it felt like I got off the bus on the wrong street. It was not horrible but not pleasant either. Honestly, I feel like a lot of people are writing stuff while on medication and this makes them a wee bit too open or something. VERY strange and honestly, kind of gross. I felt sorry I even bothered checking out the link/magazine. It reminded me of the free magazines you often find in big cities that have a bunch of yuck in it which equals advertisements/money.

Why do people have to sink to the lowest denominator when it comes to magazines/free newspapers? It's annoying and ugly. Very discouraging...

Anyway, enough about that. Besides family stuff I'm sad about, I saw several animals that had been hit by cars. I don't like seeing that but it does happen. Poor rabbits. Today, there was a skunk. I'm especially fond of skunks. I don't know why. But I love them even if they smell. They are just so cute. So, it was depressing to see this little creature laying there. Of course, I said a little prayer for it (as well as any animal I see laying there). I wish everyone would drive slower...but even that doesn't work (I drove over a baby bird once...long story basically, I wasn't sure it was a bird until after I drove over it. still makes me feel sad. And I was driving slow, too). So, I don't know. I did see a truck go by scooping up the dead animals. I think sometimes the smell of an animal attracts other critters and they become vulnerable too. :(

I've got to do something to get me out of sad thoughts. Of course, being rammed by a 3 year old ought to help a little.

the quiet rain

Rain

I keep thinking of my Auntie Dimka alone in Oklahoma. I'm sure there are nurses and staff near by but it is a sad realization that she is by her self. Maybe a kind person from the church she went to will visit her. I hope so.

Before my dad got so hurt and ill, he tried to get my aunt, his sister, to come back to California. He went before a judge but she threw him out of court. Basically, he was raving and saying every illogical thing he could think of. He was very upset and emotional. I think if he had been able to express him self better, he could have gotten my uncle, his brother, to help. But it didn't happen.

The person I really upset with, really angry with is my cousin, my aunt's daughter. Basically, she got angry with her elderly mom and left her in Oklahoma. She said some crazy things about letting her die there and that's her "punishment". To me that is so, so sick and cruel. She didn't know auntie Dimka (who is the reason my cousin got to America...from Bulgaria) and she just ignored all my aunt's pleas to try and create a positive relationship. Sure, my aunt is very religious and a bit funny about dreams and such. However, to just leave her so far from friends and family, to say she is the judge of this elderly woman and has the right to keep her away from everyone else, is wrong. I honestly think she was afraid my aunt would say something about her daughter or family and it would make her ashamed. This would explain her total cutting off of her own mother.  I think it was more for lack of funds that my cousin had to leave my aunt behind. I think I was venting here and emotional.

The odd thing is, I grew up with my aunt and know most of the story of how she came to America and had to leave everything behind. I know what her husband did (had affairs, beat her, and divorced her and remarried while she had a small room in the same house! Some crazy laws of the time didn't let her just leave). How she eventually came to America, had to leave her son and daughter because of the horrible situation, so she could have some sanity. I wish my family had had some psychological intervention to help everyone. I think this is my biggest regret in our family. That we didn't have any therapy for family members or family therapy to deal with these sorts of issues. I really feel like it would have helped because we all loved each other, just didn't know how to express ourselves, etc. I'm thinking of how my mom and aunt could have had less arguments and my dad as well.

I'm praying for my aunt as I think she is near the end. I hope she is at peace. I have many memories of her as a wonderful person and loving story teller. I remember playing a trick on her...my sister, brothers and I recorded a bunch of squeaks on a tape recorder and hid outside her window. We pretended to be mice and she played along with us, making surprised sounds and saying, "oh, no! There are mice everywhere!" lol She rushed to the window and we all laughed. And she'd have interesting dreams and thoughts about God and life. Some dreams where a bit eerie in how close to the truth they were and so interesting. I still need to paint some of them.

I need to find some pictures of my aunt. I love you, my dear aunt.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

feeling a bit down

Just learned that my Auntie Dimka is in a coma. She has been very ill and now, it looks like she is leaving us soon. I feel really grumpy/sad and overwhelmed. I feel so sad that she was left in Oklahoma by her daughter and that she was so far away from family/friends in California. She had some strange idea to move to Oklahoma about 12 years ago and the last few years have been very hard with her mental health going down and then physically getting hurt (she broke her hip at the convalescent hospital).

I feel sad and angry about all of this because it reminds me of my dad, etc. I feel like I've just been working on family stuff all day and then this sad thing happens. Plus, it's cold again and I didn't go out for walk.

Praying that my aunt is at peace and comfortable. I have lots of good memories of her and pray that she is in a good place.

Monday, April 16, 2012

art by me...nap

napping kittens

wild wind

felt like the car was going to blow over while driving to pick up the kids. Definitely a storm is brewing. The sky is paint bucket blue with some sheep wandering around and the heat feels warm and sluggish. It's windy one second and within the next moment, a still life. Odd.hopefully, doesn't mean a hurricane or something. Anyway, I feel tired and achy from the weather. Did a bunch of chores, did some art, got up on time and all that even after I stayed up till 1 watching a Buddha documentary. Don't ask me why. Just felt like seeing something uplifting and positive.

Gotta help the kids with their "Learning Fair Projects". Just gave the order to get on the ball and do their homework. Geesh, what is it with kids and the warm weather? I've been trying to get them to do their work/projects and it's nearly impossible.

I'm exhausted thinking about it all. Life. What can you do? Take a nap, I guess.

I've got to update the calendar and see what's up next...birthdays, my brother's & brother-in-law. Was planning to do a wood carving of his fave animation character or video game character but he never got back to me. He's got wedding's on his mind. lol

The good thing is my ankle is better...still twinges when I move it a certain way. It's 85% better.

have a good week. I need a nap.

Nap zone (that's not me, btw but I love the smile)

Saturday, April 14, 2012

quiet Saturday

bluebird in rain puddle

There's a touch of chill to the air with the possibility of rain. It's a nice feeling of expectancy and makes you feel the world is getting greener by the moment. I love that feeling.

I found out if you tell a child to look for moss and help you find it, you will have handfuls of it in a few minutes. My middle girl found so much moss, I'm going to have to get started on that moss graffiti project soon. I'm glad we had more moss than I realized, too. :) And here I was wandering down the road looking for bits in the alleys. gotta laugh at my self for that.

I wish I had brought my camera the other day. The sky was very blue and the clouds were nearly alive, changing into all sorts of creatures just for our amusement, it seemed. It was a good feeling.

I talked to my Mom a few days ago. Dad is doing well...a little up and down in his communication but basically, like he was before the 2nd stroke. So, this is optimistic. My sister is helping a lot with getting plans made for my Mom and Dad to move into a better apartment. So, we're happy about this.

Jon is doing yard work and clearing brush. It looks better, just hope we didn't make the birds and rabbits too disturbed by all of this. I keep dreaming of fencing up the yard and chopping down the maple tree (or just trimming it a little)and make that side of the yard nice. Little by little.

I burned my fingers on shrinky dinks and they still hurt. :( The kids were making stuff and one of the pieces bent over and I tried to save it. Oh, well.

I feel really tired...cleaned out the garage (a little), played w/ the kids, and did some cleaning. I can't believe it's 6pm already. Harry fell asleep on the floor and I covered him with a blanket. He had a lot of quality time with daddy and did a lot of playing. It was a good day.

Kids are so cute and so annoying sometimes. I guess that's what most people are like...ha ha. I guess I feel a bit grumpy and would like to take a nap but they need me. I'll get over it.

Have a great weekend. :)

Friday, April 13, 2012

a poem about my Father and Mother

Rising from the waves of forgetfulness

He held her hand for the first time in months. He looked and saw and recognized her eyes, framed by her light brown lashes, the gentle fold of her eye lids, the creases in the corners, the pale blue of the ocean found in her eyes-he saw her and called her name through the fog, as if she were far, far away and she knew, in her heart, everything had been worth hearing him call her name, again.

E.Dimov-Gottshall

Thursday, April 12, 2012

some cool art

lowbrow altered book spread

rainy day tomorrow

play doh owl

So, I guess tomorrow's going to be a rainy day. I'll have to do some inside stuff...most likely, I'll do some baking. Jon made fondue tonight...quite good. I made chicken noodle soupp from a basic recipe I found on-line. Just water, noodles, some chicken broth, canned chicken, carrots and celery. Nothing too complicated. But now I feel sleepy.

Anyway, we did a long walk today. I was hunting for moss...found some in several places but was a bit awkward to pick up/scrap off cement. Next time, I'll bring a little shovel to do that. It was fun walking. I hope with the new rain front there will be more moss as most of it was really dried up. Usually, it's pretty green out there this time of year.

I want to do this:
How To Make Moss Graffiti

I'm going to try this on several parts of our garage...to see if it works and to see if it can be done on painted brick. From what I've read, it has to be porous. We shall see. :)

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Josh Groban - Awake [Live] (video)

Talked to my Mom and found out one of my Dad's favorite singers is Josh. I didn't know this...Mom's been playing his CD, Awake for Dad. I never heard it before today...just makes me cry

Monday, April 09, 2012

Found a big basket full of eggs

wouldn't you like to find this on your front doorstep for Easter? What a lovely design!

Friday, April 06, 2012

Easter Eggs

Easter Eggs by musicpb
Easter Eggs, a photo by musicpb on Flickr.

what you do is take a leaf or flower and place it on the egg. Wrap a small stocking around it, dip in the dye. Remove. Let dry and there it is. :)

Easter Eggs

Planning to color a few...I just saw this blog at Posie Gets Cozy and will have to try this! It is so darling and delicate...I hope I can try at least 3 eggs...Jon used up my store of eggs (I had nearly 3 doz and then checked and there was half of this because he cracked 6 of them (who stores food on top of eggs!?!) and used some for scrambled eggs).

Anyway, gotta clear up a space to start the egg prep. Tomorrow, I'm making Spring rolls for Easter as well. I thought that would be fun.

The kids did one Easter egg event but it turned out sort of flat and overly controlled. Basically, they walked in a line and got candy from various organizations. My eldest felt like saying, "Trick or Treat". The first thing they told me when they got home was it was a rip off. It was free, so I don't see it being that bad...but it didn't live up to expectations. Isn't that the way with life? lol

fresh air

fresh air by prairie.mouse
fresh air, a photo by prairie.mouse on Flickr.

how fun is this? I'm tempted to try something like this my self. Love dolls doing activities we take for granite...plus, a rabbit doll. so cute!

# 1612 "I'll Be A Big Noise"

beautiful and interesting art

Friday Funspiration: Sweet dolls

fun dolls!

Best Easter Wishes...

Best Easter Wishes... by aprilamb
Best Easter Wishes..., a photo by aprilamb on Flickr.

aren't they cute? :)

Thursday, April 05, 2012

spring makings

spring makings 5a by A Fanciful Twist
spring makings 5a, a photo by A Fanciful Twist on Flickr.

so sweet!

Egg Head Cascaron

Egg Head Cascaron by A Fanciful Twist
Egg Head Cascaron, a photo by A Fanciful Twist on Flickr.

what a great idea for Easter eggs!

talked to my Mom

Things are slowly getting better with my Dad or at least stable. It seems when he is responding the worse, it's time to take him in to get a blood transfusion. I feel so sorry for my Dad but it does make him better even if it is very hard/painful for him to get to the hospital. The good news is he is coming home tomorrow and is talking more. Plus, he is starting to drink a little/eat. Thank God!

Other good news, 3 of the pieces of art I made were accepted to the local BCAF (Blair County Arts Foundation) show. :) So, this is additional great news.

Have a great Easter weekend!

Risen

Risen by Emilyannamarie
Risen, a photo by Emilyannamarie on Flickr.

for Easter

Risen

Risen by Emilyannamarie
Risen, a photo by Emilyannamarie on Flickr.

mixed media wood carving

Easter Bunny Dreams

Easter Bunny Dreams by Emilyannamarie
Easter Bunny Dreams, a photo by Emilyannamarie on Flickr.

Finished this Easter Bunny in time for Easter. :) Paper mached, felt, and a cotton tail. :)

Easter Bunny

Easter Bunny by Emilyannamarie
Easter Bunny, a photo by Emilyannamarie on Flickr.

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

thinking

I guess it's a common thing...you hear a piece of music or hear something a beloved friend or parent likes, would have liked, and you are overwhelmed by how much you want to share with them or tell them. Either they have passed away or if ill, you want them to be able to acknowledge/be aware of what is around them...even for a few seconds.

I'm so grateful I had a chance to talk to my Dad in the weeks before the stroke(s) and even if he argued with me, I didn't mind. We were talking and it was good. I just wish he could do this now. I know, baby steps and I need to think of it as this. It's just hard because you miss that person. And even if they are a different person, you love them all the more at the same time you mourn.

Well, here I was feeling down and I look outside. The birds are building a nest in the wisteria. It is a heart shape. I'll take a photo...

Sociable

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