Still Sweet

Okay, so if you’ve followed my blog at all, you know that I LOVE cooking and baking and trying to find healthy alternatives to those overwhelming amounts of sugar and fats that make our delicious dishes..well, delicious! 

Since my detox diet (anti-candida) I’ve found that food isn’t involved as much anymore. Its harder to find an art in the few foods that I can eat, so when I make stuff for Mi Amor, I’m disconnected. I can’t taste it to see if there is enough flavor or the texture is proper… I have learned to say, “I’m not going to be offended if you put sauce or more herbs on this.”

I don’t want him eating terribly because I don’t have a good digestive system..or whatever is wrong with me…

So, today, after dropping Mi Amor off at work, I headed to Gram and Gramp’s house to bake up a storm and visit!

Listening to music…
…enjoying the smells of cinnamon…
…the sight of fluffy snow and squirrels dancing across it…
…and resisting all the things I’m making and HOPING that they taste good… if you can’t tell—that’s the lame part.

I’m staying strong and while I was baking I made myself a yummy little dish:

Melt coconut oil and add carob powder, cinnamon, and ground flaxseed. Place in sprayed baking dish. For the filling I melted peanut butter only made from peanuts (nothing added) and plain, all natural yogurt (no sugar or additives) almonds, and walnuts. Tablespoon of pure vanilla (or from the bean).
Bake for 10 minutes at 350 degrees.

Eat from the dish and enjoy a few spoonfuls before you start eating all those wonderful cookies and scones and bars that you just made…

I love Grandma and Grandpa. Its such a joy to be here…
She mentioned that this is the first time I’ve been here baking as a married woman. I adore our talks and time together… It was just her and I this morning, since Grandpa was at work.
Well, we are leaving shortly for lunch with friends after a seminar on “Renting Lacy” a anti-trafficking story of a woman who was prostituted.

Conversational Generation

I just had a marvelous day off. 

Mi Amor’s grandparents are some of the neatest people. They are such an unusual pair, keeping things fresh and fun. Living only 20 minutes from their house, I came and assisted Mrs. T in the kitchen for a party. I met lots of people in the health care plan Mr. T works for. 

After lots of chatting, eating, a nap in the afternoon, assisting in technology & a second ‘neighbor’ party to finish off the munchies, I’m finally back to Poppins. 

I adore seasoned folk. Especially because of how much knowledge and experience they bring to the table. 

With the neighbors we ranged from talk of wine & travel to war & dogs. 

I made a few friends and got to know more about Mr & Mrs T. 

It just made me really look forward to experiencing more of life with them while Mi Amor’s under their roof. 

I also learned that I never cease to amaze people with my age. They always think I’m older & then impressed by how much I know and can bring to the table while being so young. 

{I like surprising people…I’m helping uphold the fact that not all of my generation is illiterate & un-engaging.}

late madness

i am mad

i have fallen off my rocker

I really, truly, was planning on being asleep right now, but somehow got distracted by updating my BucketList over pinterest (my other addiction).
My my how I cannot wait for my latest trip!
Minnesota is calling my name, thanks to a plane ticket from my parents <[[i love them, but this makes me love them more]]>

I can’t wait to spend time with my family there, I’m going to bring my iPod to blog along with, when I have time.

I’m starting to look seriously into sailing pictures…I want to breathe in the air and feel the wind, get sprayed with the ocean and hear the passion of the waves.

I desperately want to meet my grandpa…he sailed, we called him Grandpa captain. Tonight, my mom told me a bit about an adventure in the Lakes she had with him, when my brother was 1 1/2. He took them sailing, along with my dad and his sister and her husband. They stayed on the boat for three nights, swashbuckling by day, anchor by night.

*sigh* how amazing.

Sounds like a great addition to my Bucketlist.

CHECK! 

Breezes

The more I’m around older generations, the more I’m introduced to the wisdom of ante-days.
Being wise has it’s perks, as long as you are willing to share that knowledge.
My morning began with grandma’s pancakes and homemade bread. I then followed my grandpa out to his garage, where he smokes his pipes and does wood works and odd jobs. He and I sat down, and all the while between puffs of smoke would share our lives.
He told me of my dad, some of the similarities of my brother, jobs, and then THEE subject I struggled with the most…cancer.
He told of how his doctor cannot believe how my grandpa has no pain, with the amount if cancer that consumes him.
I fought tears and swallowed hard often.
It is a blessing to have him here on this earth still, a miracle really.
After an hour or less of chatting we headed to church.
My uncle’s mom is 98 years old and dying slowly…she wants to meet Jesus somethin’ fierce.
We watched this movie tonight called “The Straight Story”. It’s about a man named Alvin Straight who rides his lawnmower halfway across Iowa into Wisconsin to see his brother. They are in their 70’s. Alvin, along the way meets various persons to whom gives advice.
It’s honestly a big adventure, this life. No matter if your a believer or not, the earthly life is a great discovering trail.
I’ve just begun mine, and although I know many who carry it, I’m tapping into the hidden wisdom that situations sow and reap.
I love my grandpa so very much, I am so thankful for the opportunity to share moments with him.
Our lives come and go, just like breezes…

Chortles, chuckles, and changes

Well, after a long and claustrtphobic drive to Minneaplois, we all made it safely, although, in-between joking choking and laughing with tears.

A few bumps to my mom’s ankle proved pain and an incident involving the top of the truck and a frappé from McDonald’s proved lack of sleep.

Today, we get to see MY BIG BROTHER JOSH!!! 🙂
I get to steal hugs from my grandparents as well.
AND I get to practice spending time with my grandpa, especially. Last night I was hit again with the realization of how stupidly I spend my time while I’m in Minnesota.
It’s all good when I am there to see family, but I usually end up spending time with others than my grandpa…he’s got cancer BAD–throughout his spine. I dont know how long I’ll have with him on this earth.
I’ll see him again, in Paradise, but now is when I need to hear his wisdom and advice. My mom’s Dad died when I was three, so I’m deeply connected to them, but I have a hard time expressing it.

*sigh* time for me to stop moping, we are about to leave.

I WILL try harder to connect to my grandpa, just letting him know that I love him.

Tradition Transition

While in Panama my grandparents sold their farm and moved from my beloved Fosston to Moorhead. Adjusting to the thought of this loss was hard on many.
Tons of thoughts came to my head  of how life would change and how it was unfair how I was unable to say goodbye to my Fosston farm Christmas’.
Arriving at my grandparent’s new house, I was hardened inside but was, as ever, overjoyed to hug my dad’s parents. Entering this house that looked just like the other twenty or os down the road with the same yellow exterior was rough. I hugged my grandpa hello and with that came streams of memories:
I smelled the familiar scent of his pipe smoke and was reminded of the days of observing every movement he would make in his cushioned chair in their old farm-house. The way he would fall asleep to a war movie with the surround sound on during the loudest battle scene. The times when I would hear deep theological discussions between him, my dad, and uncle. Grandpa would always shake his head, lean forward, remove his pipe from his mouth and say, ‘well,’ and continue with a most intriguing story supporting his point. If one of them made a great point he would let out a ‘hmm’ and chew his tongue on the left side of his mouth (a sign he was thinking hard-an attribute I inherited).
Another thing I have memorized my grandpa doing is when he listens to his classical music collection (a love of mine) he sits in his chair, picking at the top of his head, zoned out in deep thought.
Along with these and many other odd habits and wonderful characteristics make up some of the reasons and memories that I love about my grandpa.
When I opened my eyes to let go of my grandpa’s greeting hug, I saw the stained glass window from the farm, it had been framed and placed in a window that separated two rooms. After stepping out of the hug I only felt the unusual feeling of crying, which never went away throughout my stay-but for many reasons.
Exploring their house I discovered it to be spacious, which meant room to place their belongings that once warmed the farm. The patriotic framed picture, the shelves full of books, the piano, all familiar table-cloth, Christmas garland, and all the hundreds of little things that I had laid eyes on many times throughout my life. “These treasures don’t belong here,” I thought, “my grandparents shouldn’t be here.”
Continuing on with the next couple hours before my cousin, uncle, and aunt arrived, I assisted my grandma with preparations for the evening meal. I set the table with the entirely familiar plates, silverware, and glasses. As my grandpa’s soothing voice sent a prayer up heavenward, while sitting with family around the table, I hoped in silliness that I would open my eyes to the farm…instead the prayer ended and I ‘amened’ into reality; a strange new land.
While eating I enjoyed conversation with laughter and updates on life, I suddenly realized, when my heart was re-softened, that it had absolutely nothing to do with the building, it had to do with my heart.
I could make a good time or a bad time, my happiness was my choice. Where was my joy?
For the last two hours I was wallowing in my depression, blinded by it,unable to see how much love our family can bring to any place.
After supper we gathered around my grandma, while she played the piano. Our nine person choir sang the many traditional Christmas cards with joy and love. I laughed and smiled, glad that God opened my eyes.
In the beginning of the third verse of “Rockin’ ’round the Christmas Tree’ I took ahold of my grandpa’s hand and started dancing with him. Thankfully my mom captured it on video so I can treasure it forever.
Christmas came the following day and I was hoping to awake to the signature scent of grandma’s pancakes (something that never had changed)…but instead I took a shower first thing and popped a piece of her homemade french bread into the toaster, without the slightest hint of a pancake. “Life changes” my mom had given me a book to read, ironically before leaving for Minnesota, that stated this.
Who Moved My Cheese is the title of the book.
Adjusting to one of the most obvious facts of life, that it comes with change, is my 2010 lesson.
Life is busy, hard, and filled with change, and within each day our attitudes affects the way we react to these circumstances. I believe, by personal experience that we, as humans, will always go through spirals: roller coasters of spiritual and emotional ups and downs. Tip is: make sure you AND those around you don’t go too far down.
Sometimes, I feel hypocritical because I write on a topic and go through a situation where it takes me a bit to eat my own words.
I do not blame you if you feel as though my blog needs no more visits, but know this: I will ALWAYS welcome your opinion and advice.
Making new memories in this house is my obligation this visit. I am soaking in the advice and opinions here as well.
I realized how much, through stories, this move affected my grandparents. It was one of the hardest things they have ever done and had apparently gone through much heartache. They have such a positive attitude about it and are focused on the future, leaving behind the hardships and bad memories.
We will create new traditions, memoirs, and reflections.
Already, during Christmas lunch have the Wester’s hearts warmed a house.
My grandparents have already made this change, this milestone, this transition, a memory and learning experience.
This house is now a home.