Sunday, July 22, 2012

Thomas turned 2 !

Oh my, we had a big bash!
 I made little goodie bags of kettle corn,
 and Elmo cupcakes.

I love to munch on kettle corn!  It's an inexpensive, sweet and salty treat, that's not quite as guilty as caramel corn!
Super easy, if you have a popcorn maker, like a Whirlypop, or a Popstir,.
 which can be purchased for about $20-$25.
 First,  combine in the kettle, the oil and popcorn, and add the sugar  and salt after the corn begins to pop.  Be careful- the exploding kernels are flying everywhere!

                      Kettle Corn
                   1/2 cup popping corn
                   2 tbsp. vegetable oil
                   3 tbsp, sugar
                   1 tsp. salt    
   Add corn and oil to kettle. Place over medium-high heat.
Once you hear the first kernels popping,  add the sugar and salt and mix well. Crank the handle continuously and lower the heat slightly.  When the corn finishes popping, remove from heat immediately so the sugar won't burn.
 Pour into a large bowl.  Break apart when cooled.

I looked at lots of recipes online, and  choose this one by Dorie's Lori. 
She has some more good tips, just click on the photo.
 I  got  some cute cellophane party bags at the Dollar Tree.

We had hoagie trays,
 salads, chips and cake.
The weather was sunny,
 warm and breezy.
 It was just great to see
the family and friends,
 and celebrate in the pavilion
 at a nearby park
 and playground.    

Some red jimmies,  a few orange jelly beans
and frosting eyes with upside-down chocolate chips for pupils.

Happy Birthday to my sweet little buddy!
I'm so proud of my big grandkids, Gary and Amber,
 and how loving and helpful they are with the
care of our little tyke.  They chased after him
 and  supervised him on the playground equipment.

My heart is full, for I am truly blessed!  It is indeed a simple pleasure
 to be with the children, and  to celebrate with family, but no small thing!

Thank you Lord,  On this second birthday, for this precious child you've entrusted in our care. Help us to nurture and guide him in all the right ways.  We ask you for wisdom and patience, and we thank you for the love and joy he gives us.  Please give him your protection for his mind, body and soul as he grows. 
 In Jesus' name, Amen  

Love, Linda

Party time!
I'm joining the fun at this party!

and the party at  Grandma's Briefs!

and Wow, this party too!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

After the storm..........

    We had quite a mess here in parts of South Jersey last week.  Trees came down on homes and cars, blocked streets and knocked out power for days.  I was really fortunate, my building had no damage and a dead tree that I wanted removed came down, near the curb, hurting nothing. It was a weird storm, called a "derecho", the most lightening I ever saw in a series of furious thunderstorms, and strong winds, in the middle of the night.  Next morning , everything looked fine  at my house, but  just 20 miles away, we found  shocking devastation.
Uh Oh, The road in front of my warehouse is blocked!
Trees are fallen everywhere!

This huge tree toppled and lifted the sidewalk. 
Some neighborhood boys were playing in the rubble
    Today,   I'm reflecting on how kind people were to each other, sharing  cool shelter, water and food and concern.  It was extremely hot this week and many lost food to spoilage.
    I am thinking about how blessed I am not to have expensive repairs to make.  I'm feeling grateful that I and my loved ones are unharmed.  I'm wondering how to be better prepared in case of future disasters.  I'm appreciating the workers that labored in extreme 100 +  weather with little sleep,  to put things back in order.   I'm appreciating  the emergency personnel that served many extra hours in this intense heat.
A Barred Plymouth Rock hen
My friend's chicken coop had some minor damage, and they were
cleaning up branches that had fallen,  but the birds were fine an
 she gave me some beautiful brown eggs.  We've had egg salad,
omelettes, French Toast, deviled eggs, and more!
  I love Mary's farm-fresh eggs!  They are the best- tasting eggs ever!

White leghorn,  and a couple hens

    I  feel  very thankful on this Sunday morning,   as  I'm humming,
"I come to the garden alone, while the dew is still on the roses", 
leisurely watering  my flowers, thinking  about things.
 The simple things: my family....dear friends.... my  health and safety,
 my humble air-conditioned mobile home.......  Running water,....
  clean clothes to wear,..... fresh eggs for breakfast,.... my herbs and
 flowers,  things like that!

I knew it was going to be scorching last week,
so I filled up the wading pool in the shade on the patio each day.

Tommy got a new swing set!   His new favorite thing-to-do! 
What joy to play with him, hear him laugh, sing little songs.
 (and now I can bribe him to finish his breakfast,
put on his shoes, whatever I ask, 
so he can go outside on the swings!!)

        Dear Lord, 
                 Please don't let me forget to thank you for everyday blessings. 
 It shouldn't take a crisis for me to remember how much I have to be
 thankful for.     Thank you for keeping me  and my family safe, and for
 showing me again how to appreciate the simple things in life.   Amen

A little boy down at the pond we visit, tried to sell me this baby turtle for $8.00.
They learn early, don't they?

Oh, this was funny!  The hammock was broken, dry-rotted in a couple places,
but Tommy and I liked to rock on it anyway.  Then, all of a sudden,
we were singing,  "Rock - a -bye baby"   and  it totally broke loose
 and we landed on the ground!
 Tommy just giggled and giggled and we just layed there laughing!

 Oh, I  finally figured out how to get the wrong time  and date off of my camera!  Isn't that great!
Silly me!
   Be blessed,  Linda