Saturday, August 5, 2017

Magic Moment - #24 Memorable Recipe

Banana Bread.  Made today from a recipe acquired 40 years ago.  Every time I bake banana bread I remember the young woman who passed it along and a little story (below).  Makes the best banana bread I have tasted to date.

Speech Class in College about 1977.  We were tasked to talk on any subject based on a personal experience.  The first person up to present walks through the classroom door in a grass skirt, bikini top and barefoot.  Oh!  It is the dead of winter.  She times her appearance to be able to walk to the front of the class and begin.  Long ginger hair.  Pale Skin.  A very toned body.

She does a few hip sways and begins.  Grew up in Hawaii.  Lived in the country and had tropical fruit readily available all year.  Including bananas.  She could have talked about her time in the Islands, but she doesn't.  She walks us through a banana bread recipe and then passes out the recipe to every student and the instructor.  I was mesmerized.  A VERY memorable speech.  At the end of her banana recipe rendition, our young male instructor states, "Well, that is certainly an A+."

So, I keep this recipe card.  Not just because it makes a great banana bread, but because it brings a smile and reminds me of a great little story that goes along with it.  Here it is below and I hope you enjoy it as much as I do:

BANANA BREAD

1/2 cup softened butter
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
At a minimum 1/4 cup walnuts
3 bananas (4 is even better)
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and bake for 1 hour.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Business Model

I love writing on this blog.  It has helped improve my writing skills, share experiences and encourages me to be creative.  But, as you can probably tell from my lack of sharing, I am not sure about the direction of this blog or the "business model" I am aiming to achieve.

This started out somewhat as a travel blog as we explored living full-time in our RV for a couple of years.  When we purchased a home on the Olympic Peninsula, I made an attempt detailing the domestic lifestyle adopted here in this beautiful part of the world. It just does not have the daily wow factor of the traveling life.

We are also pondering becoming more adventuresome (whatever that means).  From my last cryptic post, you can sense my frustration with others as we bounce ideas off of friends and family.  Everyone has their own ideas of the perfect place to live and the "right" way to live out your life.

Oy Vey.

Give me some time and I will reboot this blog with a whole new format.  Something fun. Probably start with a clean slate with a whole new "business model" and new blog.  I have a perfect new title.  Just need a little inspiration to get going.

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Life Journeys

“If you fuel your journey on the opinions of others, you are going to run out of gas.”
Steve Maraboli, Unapologetically You: Reflections on Life and the Human Experience   

Thinking about change or no change and what will be meaningful to me.  Not what others consider the "right thing to do".  Life is way too short.  What is in store for the next 20 years?

Friday, March 17, 2017

No Waste Wednesday - #44 Granola - Finally From Scratch


For years, I have been trying to make a tasty granola cereal from scratch.  Finally I found a recipe that works!  It also takes advantage of some local home grown ingredients.


Our little organic store, Nash's Produce, down the road, grows and makes their own rolled oats.  All organic and lots of flavor.  Use 4 cups rolled oats as the first ingredient.

Another local store, Sunny Farms (they stay warm in the winter with a huge wood burning stove--smells so good), carries local fresh maple syrup.  Pour 1/4 cup into the oats.

Next, slivered almonds.  Although not local, Costco has a large bag of organic almonds that are pretty darn good.  One cup of slivered almonds is added to the above.

NOT local or organic, I love coconut flakes in my granola.  I add a cup to the whole concoction.  But if you want to stay true to the organic, I have replaced the coconut with dried berries on occasion.

Stir well and spread out on a cooking sheet with sides.  Place in a preheated oven at 325 F degrees.  Bake for 15 minutes and then stir.  Cook for another 5 minutes.  And you are done.  Beware! It is easy to burn--watch CLOSELY.  It needs to be a golden brown.

This is the best cereal.  Easy to make.  And A LOT cheaper than the boxed cereal.  And it is A LOT tastier.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Lighten Your Load

My Mom recently stayed a couple of days with us along with my Aunt and sister.  We did a little shopping and did a lot of eating and drinking.  I noticed my Mom still carried a huge purse.  For as long as I can remember she has carried a huge purse filled with "stuff" and it is extremely heavy.  She also has serious back issues.

I also have some serious back issues.  Which is why I have been limited in my hiking and golfing the last couple of years.  But, I work at strengthening my core and I ditched the purse.  I am serious--the purse is gone.  Not only does it avoid the back acting up, but I feel so free and unencumbered.  Not to mention the closet space gained from eliminating all those purses.  I still keep two small purses and one large for travel (extra paperwork and stashing the coat).

Some time in the last 60 years the marketing people have convinced women that they need to carry their life on their hip.  And they need a different purse for every occasion and day of the week.  Stop the madness!

All you need is a credit card, a debit card, driver's license, a twenty dollar bill, 2 personal checks and your smart phone.  They make wallets to contain all of this and it fits in your coat pocket or in hot weather, I agree, a small purse. 

So, Mom!, if you are reading this lighten your load and be kind to your back! 

Monday, February 20, 2017

A Dilemna, Emma

Our neighborhood development centered around a golf course is around 700 homes.  It is not a 55+ designated area, but it is predominately retirees.  The earliest "settlers" moved here in the early 1980s and many are now in their 80s and 90s.  So, we are often losing our older friends.  It is depressing and it also reinforces that we are getting to that end point in life sooner than what we think.

So.  We talk about the direction of our daily lives.  We talk about it often. Are we living our lives to the fullest?  We are happy and comfortable, but our daily life has become routine and a little lackluster.  You can tell by the absence of blog posts that there is not really anything exciting going on right now.

Still in our early 60s and healthy.  What should we do? 

There are options to consider.  Maybe they are just fun topics of conversation, maybe they can amount to something. 

(1)  Do the big dream we have had for 40+ years--buy the live aboard boat.  Nordhavn 46 full displacement trawler.  Gain more experience in Puget Sound.  (We have had a 24 foot cabin cruiser before and explored Puget Sound--loved it.)  Maybe head off for the open sea if we feel confident and competent.  The boat can go anywhere only limited by the skill of the operator.
-or-
(2) Move overseas.  Portugal.  Cost of living is very reasonable.  The climate in southern and mid-Portugal is ideal.  A good home base to explore the rest of Europe.  New people.  New culture.  Good golf courses.  Good fishing.  Can be stressful, but the rewards would be great and exciting.
-or-
(3) Stay put on the Olympic Peninsula.  We love our friends and our new home.  Buy a small boat to fish and explore Puget Sound and on up to Alaska.  Comfortable choice and beautiful location.  Blog worthy?  Maybe.

It is a dilemma, Emma.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

2017 Off and Running

Our typical winters on the Peninsula are relatively mild compared to the rest of the country.  This winter is not the norm.  Only a dusting of snow one day and gone the next, but it has been cold.  Hanging for weeks with daytime temperatures in the low 30s.  Too cold to get outdoors and we are feeling cabin fever, for sure.  Focusing on indoor projects and finishing up the home projects is our aim until things warm up.

The year of 2016 was the year of fixing up our new home.  The last week of the year we installed a new foyer light and it looks fabulous.  Just a few more updates in 2017 for the home  (1) pull out overgrown shrubs along the driveway (they are huge!), (2) exterior paint for the house, and (3) refinish the back deck and install railing.  Mostly, we are going to indulge in more hiking, art workshops (Me), wood sculpture (Hubby), golf, healthy living and spiffing up this blog a bit. 
Out with the Old - In with the New!



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