Monthly Archives: April 2014


Wish I was sleeping.

I should be doing critiques.  Mind won’t focus, but when I try to sleep it likes to skitter about like the loose coffee beans that took off when the canister fell out of the pantry and the lid came off.  (I am still finding coffee beans in the oddest places.)

I have enjoyed April’s blogging endeavor.  It is the one thing that I got right.

In the doghouse, but at least he's getting to sleep! photo by constantin jurcut

In the doghouse, but at least he’s getting to sleep!
photo by constantin jurcut

I intend to take a brief break, but I am scheduling popular posts from a previous blog and I want to get started back up on Monday of next week.  Or Tuesday.  We shall see.

It helps so much to have a theme to work with like the A to Z challenge, even though I never got around to signing up and never used the hashtag.  It still gave me a goal and a reason to set aside time most days to get something posted.

Any ideas?  Does anyone know of any challenges for the month of May or do you have prompts/themes that worked for you?  Please commment.  I would love to hear about them soon and give the ideas time to start cooking.

Thanks to all those who started following my blog in the recent days.  I appreciate it!



Yes! and Yum!

The thing I like most about Facebook’s latest update is that by the time I get the print large enough to read, the advertising is pushed off the screen. Yes!


It’s time to make more

Quinoa Tabouli

Quinoa Tabouli

Quinoa Tabouli

2 c water
1 c quinoa, well rinsed
3 medium ripe tomatoes
1 c scallions, chopped
1 1/2 c parsley, coarsely chopped
1/3 c olive oil
1/2 c fresh lemon juice
2 cloves garlic, pressed
2 tablespoons fresh mint
salt to taste

Place water & rinsed quinoa into a 2-qt saucepan and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce head and simmer 10-15 minutes, or until water is absorbed.

Or use a rice cooker according to the instructions.

While quinoa is cooking, finely chop tomatoes, parsley, scallions.  Add lemon juice, olive oil, and fresh mint to the tomato mixture.

Stir in cooked quinoa and salt.  Mix well.

This tabouli is best made a day in advance to allow the flavors to blend before serving.  Tabouli is traditionally served at room temperature and can be removed from the refrigerator 30 – 60 minutes before serving.



Marks this spot
Where we stop.
I see through to the bone.
I know how you play me.


(No more wondering what on earth I will post for “X”! I worried about that for so long and I guess my mind worked on it while I wasn’t thinking.  It had plenty of opportunity.  LOL!)


We are on the downhill slide to another family wedding event, prompting me to look back:


My Parents’ Wedding


My Wedding. (I think my Dad probably just said something funny…)

Jill's Wedding

Jill & Nathan’s Wedding

Kim's Wedding

Kim and Adam’s Wedding (If you think the dress looks familiar, you’re right. It appeared in the first picture too!)

Abe & Ashley's Wedding

Abe & Ashley’s Wedding

And next week I can add Asher & Kayla’s 🙂

Here’s to happy families!



World English Dictionary
virga (ˈvɜːɡə)

— n
( sometimes functioning as plural ) meteorol wisps of rain or snow, seen trailing from clouds, that evaporate before reaching the earth

[C20: from Latin: streak]

The Oklahoma sky and weather have taught me many things. Dark wisps of virga eerily transform the sky into a canvas of dark ghosts trying hard to land on earth.  The sky is one of the few reasons, in my book, that make it worth it to be up before the sun. It is equally worth it to stop whatever I am doing and watch the sunset.

I have also learned respect for the storms that come sweeping through and the wisdom of listening to warnings. It is pretty cool to be able to watch weather changes approach in that wide open expanse above our heads.

Then there’s the summer sun, blazing so relentlessly you swear you should be able to reach out and touch it.

For me the sky is most interesting when there are clouds.  When life is too busy for cloud watching, then life has become entirely too busy, and it’s time to ratchet back a notch or two.

Here are a few of my shots of the Oklahoma sky:


Kelvin-Helmholtz clouds



Angel Wing Sunset


Storm Cloud


Another storm cloud


Mother Ship Got Through


Oklahoma Clouds Can Sign! Love you, too.

Love clouds, too?  You’ll enjoy visiting The Cloud Appreciation Society.



As our globe shrinks it becomes more necessary to explore the deeper recesses of language like connotation and idioms that cannot be translated literally. For example in English “bread” can mean the usual baked loaf, but it can also stand for food in general, though the term is not used as much now as it has been in the past. (We broke bread and enjoyed the evening or Give us this day our daily bread.) Translators must consider carefully how to best convey the meaning of the word being taken from one language and expressed in another.

In this process lexicographers have deemed some terms “untranslatable”.  Usually this means that there is no one-for-one word that means the same between two languages being translated.  

Wikipedia has this to say about untranslatable words:

Untranslatability is a property of a text, or of any utterance, in one language, for which no equivalent text or utterance can be found in another language when translated.

Terms are, however, neither exclusively translatable nor exclusively untranslatable; rather, the degree of difficulty of translation depends on their nature, as well as on the translator’s knowledge of the languages in question.

Quite often, a text or utterance that is considered to be “untranslatable” is actually a lacuna, or lexical gap. That is, there is no one-to-one equivalence between the word, expression or turn of phrase in the source language and another word, expression or turn of phrase in the target language. A translator can, however, resort to a number of translation procedures to compensate for this. Therefore, untranslatability or difficulty of translation does not always carry deep linguistic relativity implications; denotation can virtually always be translated, given enough circumlocution, although connotation may be ineffable or inefficient to convey.

Here are a few untranslatables from my Word Collection page that I found particularly intriguing.

  • kummerspeck (n.) excess weight gained from emotional overeating. Literally, grief bacon. German
  • hygge (n.) the act of relaxing with loved ones and good friends, usually while enjoying food and drink, in a cozy atmosphere. Danish 
  • wabi-sabi (n.) a way of living that emphasizes finding beauty in imperfection and accepting the natural cycle of growth and decay. Japanese
  • saudade (n.) a strong feeling of missing someone you love. Portuguese
  • shemomedjamo (n.) the act of continuing to eat, though full, because of the delicious taste of the food. Georgian
  • mencolek (v.) to tap lightly on the opposite shoulder from behind to fool someone. Indonesian
  • jung (n.) a special feeling, stronger than love, proven by having survived a huge argument with someone
  • espirit d’escalier (v.) thinking of a witty comeback when it’s too late
  • pelinti (v.) moving very hot food around in your mouth. Ghanaian 
  • gilgil (n.) the overwhelming urge to squeeze or pinch something that is very cute. Filipino 




Grins & Grapes on Greystone Road

Grins and Grapes on Greystone Road

Somehow it’s appropriate that there has come to be #TBT on the day of the week I have loved over the past several years to call my “play day.”  Who doesn’t want to be a kid again, with a play date to look forward to?

My relaxed Thursdays started back when I read The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. While some of the book wasn’t quite my cup of tea, I connected with the idea of a weekly artist’s date.

I used to try to pick a weekend day to fill the well. No school to teach and Dad was here to keep the boys occupied.  Still proved to be an unworkable idea. Too many out-of-the-ordinary things find their way to the weekend. There are more people around; it’s next to impossible to focus on quiet time or give full attention to creative endeavors when people are clamoring for you to help them find clean socks or get the hamburgers ready for the grill.

So there was Thursday, sitting there by itself after the busiest part of my week was over and right before the weekend came knocking.  Perfect!

Of course Play Day doesn’t always go according to plan.  They are almost never what I set out for them to be.  It is impossible to turn off the people in your life (though if they invented the switch I might give it a try!) and while I find it difficult to be “unavailable” for my family, who mean the world to me, I find that they always survive it when I say I can’t or simply no.  Afterward I can be there for them with a measure of inner strength that wouldn’t have been present without the down time.

I am also discovering that some of the things I reserve for Thursday, shouldn’t be reserved at all but deserve to be part of my everyday life because they are part of who I am and what I like, and no one should put their lives on hold for an entire week to get to be who they really are for one day.  That’s not balanced.

One constant I have achieved however, (and I do realize how very fortunate I am that I can do this!) is I don’t set an alarm for Thursday morning.  I wake up when the old body says it’s time and not before.  And then I start the day slowly with a picture out my window, a little meditation, a little prayer, water, writing. Even with hubby here most mornings I can generally pull this one off.  It’s a great way to start the day.

Need some ammunition and/or ideas for establishing your own “me” time? Here are some books I found helpful:

A Gift From the Sea
The Woman’s Comfort Book
The Artist’s Way
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People