Authentic Compassion

Monday, December 31, 2007

Chicken Soup for the body and soul

Feliz Ano Nuevo and or Happy New Year y'all! Tomorrow is our 8th wedding anniversary , amazing.

It is a little cool today so I decided to experiment with chicken soup recipes. Easy to make and you could freeze individual servings and microwave them for lunch this month.
Ingredients are in bold type
In a LARGE skillet heat two tablespoons olive oil,
1 cup of onion coarsely chopped
1 cup of diced carrot
1.5 pounds or two whole chicken breasts cut into small cubes
Add the onion, carrot and chicken to heated skillet and cook, stirring occasionally for about 8 minutes until lightly browned. Add 2 teaspoons finely minced garlic, then 2 teaspoons ground cumin, 3/4 teaspoon dried oregano leaves. Stir until the spices and garlic are mixed in with the chicken - keep heat fairly high so chicken will continue to cook.
one 15.8 ounce can Great Northern Beans - drained and rinsed
one 15 ounce can Black Beans - also drained and rinsed
2 cans (4.5 ounce each) chopped green chiles (about one cup)
4 cups of high quality chicken broth
Allow this all to reach full boil, stir in 1/4 cup of ground yellow corn meal and stir briskly to avoid lumps. Keep temp up , the corn meal will begin to thicken the soup slightly. Add sea salt to taste and I added a teaspoon and a half of white pepper - you could use black pepper to taste also.
We served this with a dollop of sour cream on top - DH and I each added several shakes of hot pepper sauce but we made the soup NOT spicy on purpose so it could be jazzed up if desired. Would be tasty to add some corn and/or a handful of chopped parsley. Quick soup to make and flavorful, smells great. The 3 of us had a bowl which holds about a cup and there is enough left for almost that again. So I'm guessing 5 - 6 servings.
There is something elemental about making soup for yourself and people you love - feels like nourishing instead of feeding. We finished reading the bible today (DH and I have a discipline of reading the bible through each year - starting anew on the 1st ). I depend on that time each day to open the eyes of my heart - to see the world in a different way. If you show up here (and few do!) I pray that you will be nourished in some way - making a recipe, enjoying pictures or connecting to one of the books,blogs or resources available here. Feliz Ano Nuevo y'all - it is almost a new year and I'm grateful for the blessings of our life - the fun, peaceful times, and I'm beginning to understand about thanking the Lord for the trials. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (the Message paraphrase)"Be cheerful no matter what; pray all the time;thank God no matter what happens. This is the way God wants you who belong to Christ Jesus to live." If you don't follow Jesus - I hope you will consider where you want to be when you leave (as C.S. Lewis called earth) The Shadowlands. I'm not a gifted evangelist - I only know what a change has occurred in my life and that it definitely was NOT me who changed - I'm still Linda Sue though not a beta version anymore - the real Linda 2.0
Here's to food, friendships, faith and faithfulness - and you are always welcome to visit Buhlaland.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Hey - It's HAY

Our goats still have plenty of pasture grass to eat - they don't like it much but it is nourishing and plentiful. I confess a need to overfeed everyone and everything, today we went down to a friend's place and bought some sudan round bales today. DH hooked up the big trailer and we drove about 17 miles south of our place. All went well - except the tractor with a bale spike on it wasn't starting today because we are having a cold weather spell. Typical country ingenuity,the guys figured out a way to use a heavy chain and lift the bales onto our trailer. Whew. Would have been a long trip for nothing if these men weren't clever - but DH and James knew how to solve a problem.

Once back at Buhlaland - the goats weren't overjoyed but once one ate a mouthful- wow! it's sudan - hey you guys - come eat some HAY.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

EAGLES' REST: Yes, Virginia, This Really IS a Baptist Church

First time I've done a blog link - but Bob Cleveland over at Eagle's Rest uploaded a video clip to youtube that is more than worthy of mention. Crank up your speakers and devote 9 minutes to watching and hearing meaningful worship -

EAGLES' REST: Yes, Virginia, This Really IS a Baptist Church

Homemade Christmas Gifts

I think I've mentioned before that my dear husband can literally do almost anything - this year for Christmas he made these lazy susans - I get the red one and other was for someone else. They are like him - useful and attractive . (explanation of couch cushion sticking up there at an odd angle - only way to keep our little dogs from nesting on top of the cushion and breaking it down - we actually move the cushions into more normal couch position to sit there!)

One of his "lines" when he was courting me (or I was chasing him? - hard to remember which direction that went) was there were only three things he couldn't fix, the break of day, a broken word and a broken heart. At the time I thought it charming male malarkey but he has proven it over and over.

The small picture is one of my keepsake ornaments - a big deal here in Texas is the yellow rose (old song -the yellow rose of Texas).

Trees picture is the very last bit of sunlight on a blessed Christmas 2007. We had a lovely Christmas - life is good here on Buhlaland (and very early to bed - we were laying there reading by 8 pm!).

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Clearing out cupboards

Sometime I get a picture which for some reason seems too good to delete. Problem comes for me when the picture has no good purpose in my blogging. I'm all about good purposes, also about good intentions. the bad part about good intentions is they are the paving materials for a road to hades-or so somebody started that old wives tale (which is a rabbit trail I prefer not to pursue - aren't you glad?).
All that said - I wanted to publish these pictures whether they were purposeful or not. I appreciate greatly the gate latch. DH found latches for our pasture gates which meet all the needs of being animal proof, people friendly and not requiring a key to carry around while we are on the property. The red latch thing meets all the requirements. How cool is that?

Next is the floating trough defroster - it keeps a water supply open so the animals never have to go without access to water due to ice. Also gives the fish we have in the trough a fighting chance to survive even prolonged cold spells.

The little dog is our Conan the Destroyer - he has the heart of a Cowardly Lion but is so sweet and occasionally poses like a Big Dog.
Final shot is the beautiful sky,only what the camera caught - not changed by any software. Isn't that amazing? I take a lot of pictures here in Buhlaland and it is fun just to show a little of what is every day to us.

Hey Fishies come HERE

Moe believes in a direct approach to fishing. He likes to stand beside the trough and stare intently - silently willing the goldfish to come to the top and become one with the cat. Moe is very zen that way- he likes for the world to become one with the cat. The world for Moe consists of rodents, fish, birds, snakes, cat treats and things we have not been able to identify once they've become ONE with Moe. Moe is very zen - personally we are nondenominational Christ followers but hey - a cat's gotta do what a cat's gotta do.
Here fishies fishies
That's how a cat lives in Buhlaland.

A bit of light is gone

Last night a sweetly shining light passed from Montana to heaven. A young friend of ours lost her hard fought battle with cancer. I haven't introduced Ellie to this blog very often because she was far too special to trivialize with cliches. She was one of the children for whom we've sought prayer. Her beautiful family was with her and they are dealing with her passing with tremendous love, dignity and faith.

During the spring - Ellie the girl chose names for three does we planned to keep. One was Violet (daughter of Crybaby) and the second was Montana (daughter of Hannah) Pictured is the doe named by and for Ellie - officially in our herd registry as Ellie Skees (daughter of Nubiana). Our four legged Ellie is sweet, skittish and growing like crazy. Two days ago when we got the news that the girl Ellie was in her final hours, I went for comfort to the goat pens (I probably should mention that I'm not great with people -animals "get" me ). I picked up our Ellie, she was unusually calm about it and rewarded me by putting her head against my chest for a while. She didn't like the tears wetting her face so she began to squirm, wanting down. No big moral to this story .
I was aware before Ellie Skees and her family came into my life that God is faithful, sovereign and good. Knowing them deepened my faith in ways I am not articulate enough to explain. Her life affected literally hundreds of people - not only those who followed the story through her mother's blogging but people they met while at Sloan Kettering or while traveling .
See you later, Ellie Skees. I watched the video of you dancing this summer - all giggles and elbows and million watt smile. It will be wonderful to see you dance in glory.
Tears are shed in Buhlaland - I just have to avoid getting goats wet - they hate that.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Texan Manicotti

  • I recall when my blogging started, I thought I'd be doing a lot of food and recipes - haven't been so far. I made this over the weekend and everyone remarked on how good it was. IF you have a compulsive need to fancy up - you can put chopped green onions, sliced olives and/or slices of avocado on top of the sour cream when this is served. I like food spicy - so if you aren't keen on hot stuff you might cut back on the chili powder.

  • 1 pound lean ground beef /
    1 (16 ounce) can refried beans /
    3 teaspoons chili powder/
    1 ½ teaspoons ground oregano /
    1 teaspoon ground cumin /
    1 package manicotti shells (8 ounces) /
    2 ½ cups water /
    1 can RoTel or diced tomatoes with green chilies /
    1 cup (4 ounces) shredded jack or Mexican blend cheese /
    1 cup of sour cream//

    In a bowl, thoroughly combine uncooked beef(yes really truly - raw ground beef), refried beans,cumin, chili powder and oregano. Spoon(see note) into uncooked manicotti shells; arrange in a greased 13 X 9 inch baking dish. Combine water and can of RoTel; pour over shells. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
    Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes before baking. Cover and bake at 350 for 45 minutes - then sprinkle with shredded cheese and return to oven uncovered for another 15 minutes. Uncover, spoon sour cream over the top. Yield : 8 servings

    Note: I found it a lot easier to put the filling into a pastry cone (or a ziploc type bag with a corner cut off) and pipe the filling in - no manicotti shell breakage and you can fill the shells completely.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Favorite Holiday Decoration

Once upon a time - I was living in Midland Texas and we got these strange things called bonus checks - they usually came just in time to be spent for Christmas. One year (probably 1986) we decided we needed a nice nativity set for our holiday decor and purchased this set made by an artist group called Teissedre - they have an internet presence now and a store in Arizona. Our purchase was made in a small shop in Midland and has been a treasure. It isn't the most beautiful or even all that unique (you can still buy a set that looks almost the same) but it meant a lot to us. I think that is how I set value on things now - other than real estate which is my business. The value comes from what use the object has or the memory it brings afresh. The nativity set brings some great memories and there is almost no one left in my life who shared that time. So I set up these figures and recall sweet times. Life provides new events and people who are wonderful and a blessing - some days the old things just seem extra sweet to me and today is one of those days on Buhlaland.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Too much is JUST enough

Cookies and candies and cakes Oh MY! We had a group of friends over to Buhlaland for a luncheon but what is the focus of MY picture taking? You got it - the dessert table. Starting at the bottom of the picture is cranberry cheesecake, next coconut pound cake, the tiny pies are my MIL's specialty - Butterscotch Tarts (we won't tell her that they are really tiny pecan pies also called Pecan Tassies) a tall bowl contains praline pecans and the white platter is macadamia, craisin oatmeal cookies. Next shot shows the fudge platter - yep - too much is JUST enough for Christmas. Lest someone fear 13 of us actually ate all this - most of it went to our church youth ministry's big Open House on the evening of the 16th. Whew - 'cause I've been doing some damage to those pecans and cookies. Life is a bit waist expanding on Buhlaland - we are upping the cardio and getting rid of leftovers!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Dawn's COLD and early light

I love the very early hours around here - Buhlaland is beautiful but especially just as the world is waking up. With new camera - I'm trying to be more artsy and not sure this will show well on computer screens - but the icy fence and pale dawn light caught my eye when I was downloading and I hope it shows up for you (all my ones of readers).

Wednesday, December 12, 2007


Update - nobody will probably see this and I didn't want to do a new blog entry about it - my dear Seal cat died yesterday. He had been acting a little grouchy for a month or two - but we attributed it to aging (I am more grouchy now myself!) In the span of just a week his abdomen swelled and he quit eating. The vet did a necropsy and told us it was liver cancer - so there really wasn't anything we could have done differently. Seal was always a clown, loved people and was my dear companion for over 11 years. Our other cat - Moe the Barn Cat is looking all over for Seal now - I know how he feels.
I love my cat - his name is Seal and he has been introduced before. One thing I'd neglected to point out - Seal is a rascal. That isn't his breed - he is a Devon Rex but his nature is rascal. The other day he was compelled by his nature to investigate the contents of a package, apparently entering the gift bag via the handle. I was aware of his plight when he ran into the master bathroom making a moaning sound. After determining that he wasn't really injured - just ticked, I grabbed the camera and tried to get some pictures. Seal found it offensive I was capturing images of him looking less than his best so I couldn't get him to face me. Hope it makes you smile - here in Buhlaland we find entertainment easy to come by.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Venting a bit

We've had such a wonderful Sunday -and came home to check our offices and make sure with the cold wave we'd left the heat on low. Some vandal minded soul had kicked in and destroyed our beautiful cedar front door and kind of dirtied up our offices. Didn't seem to steal anything - just did some nasty stuff. Added to that our house mail box was destroyed by random vandalism (or maybe not random) and it has been a day of assaults. Oh well - DH boarded up our front door over there and we'll order an ugly metal door to replace it - and install an alarm set up to wake the dead next time. Sheriff's office said there had been about 36 hours of juvenile crime all over the county and plenty of holiday domestic violence. All we know to do is clean up the mess and pray for the people who would do such a thing. Stinks though - really stinks!

Friday, December 7, 2007

Mushroom Soup

It's A Soup-Tacular!
Dear Blogites (Blogidians?, Blogos? hmm not sure about salutation)

While bowl of results looks OK it tastes superb! Only ingredient not in group picture was Franks' Hot Sauce (aka Tabasco) more about that later - but what do you expect - mr. sauce has gotten so big time with buffalo wings and all - cannot make it to a group shot scheduled days in advance.

Here we go:
Read through the recipe and get your ingredients (graciously highlighted for you with bold lettering)chopped and measured etc. , we are talking healthy, full flavored food that should be an easy 30-45 minute prep.

Pour 4 cups of warm water over 3 cups of dried mushrooms (purchased at Costco in the large container - you can find them in smaller amounts at other grocers) Allow mushrooms to rehydrate for at least a half hour.

While mushrooms are doing their spa treatment - pour 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil into a large soup pot over medium heat.
Add 3 cups coarsely chopped raw onion and 2 generous teaspoons minced garlic (generous teaspoons means don't level it off).
Pay attention while they are merrily cooking - easy to scorch garlic and tastes vile.

Remove mushrooms from their liquid (don't throw it away!) and very coarsely chop. When onions are turning translucent, add in chopped mushrooms and 3 cups of the yummy re hydrating liquid. A little more or less makes NO difference.
Cook down to about half as much liquid. Sprinkle over the mixture 1/4 cup all purpose flour - stirring a lot so it won't be in one huge flour lump. Add 1 cup dry sherry.
Allow to bubble for a few minutes to burn off the alcohol but leave yummy flavor.

Add 3/4 teaspoon of ground dry thyme, one teaspoon sea salt, one teaspoon medium grind pepper (the 4 peppercorn mixture is available most places).
Pour in 4 cups (conveniently the exact size of one of those boxes of broth) beef broth.
Stir in 6-8 ounces coarsely chopped cooked turkey (this was the turkey left from delicious Thanksgiving meal!). Allow to cook for 10-15 minutes over low heat.

Check seasoning - at this point you might add a little more salt but go easy - this is supposed to be healthy! The one teaspoon hot sauce goes in now - soup will not taste hot.

Ta Da - I served with shredded swiss cheese on the top - but would be wonderful with grated parmesan and croutons also.

Eaten by two very manly men and one 88 year old lady as well as yours truly - all agreed - delicious!

To gather many more recipes - go to the link added above - enjoy y'all!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Apocryphal letter

A "letter from Jesus" is appearing in the blogosphere and on many forums online. A vast amount of what circulates on the www isn't either true or admirable (read Philippians 4:8). I am growing stronger in a belief (remember the purpose of this blog in the beginning was to discipline me about my spiritual journey?) that Jesus the Christ is portrayed wrongly in much of modern pop Christian writings and churches . Surprising to me to find a bit of pertinent Christmas web lore. The grammatical structure isn't good - going under the category of not important. Have tried to find who actually wrote this but so far googling isn't bringing much more than other versions of it. What say ye all?

A Christmas Letter from Jesus..

Dear Children, It has come to my attention that many of you are upset that folks are taking My name out of the season. Maybe you've forgotten that I wasn't actually born during this time of the year and that it was some of your predecessors who decided to celebrate My birthday on what was actually a time of pagan festival. Although I do appreciate being remembered anytime. How I personally feel about this celebration can probably be most easily understood by those of you who have been blessed with children of your own. I don't care what you call the day. If you want to celebrate My birth, just GET ALONG AND LOVE ONE ANOTHER.

Now, having said that let Me go on. If it bothers you that the town in which you live doesn't allow a scene depicting My birth, then just get rid of a couple of Santa's and snowmen and put in a small Nativity scene on your own front lawn. If all My followers did that there wouldn't be any need for such a scene on the town square because there would be many of them all around town. Stop worrying about the fact that people are calling the tree a holiday tree, instead of a Christmas tree. It was I who made all trees. You can remember Me anytime you see any tree. Decorate a grape vine if you wish: I actually spoke of that one in a teaching, explaining who I am in relation to you and what each of our tasks were. If you have forgotten that one, look up John 15: 1 - 8. If you want to give Me a present in remembrance of My birth, here is my wish list. Choose something from it:

1. Instead of writing protest letters objecting to the way My birthday is being celebrated, write letters of love and hope to soldiers away from home. They are terribly afraid and lonely this time of year. I know, they tell Me all the time.

2. Visit someone in a nursing home. You don't have to know them personally. They just need to know that someone cares about them.

3. Instead of writing George complaining about the wording on the cards his staff sent out this year, why don't you write and tell him that you'll be praying for him and his family this year. Then follow up. It will be nice hearing from you again.

4. Instead of giving your children a lot of gifts you can't afford and they don't need, spend time with them. Tell them the story of My birth, and why I came to live with you down here. Hold them in your arms and remind them that I love them.

5. Pick someone that has hurt you in the past and forgive him or her.

6. Did you know that someone in your town will attempt to take their own life this season because they feel so alone and hopeless? Since you don't know who that person is, try giving everyone you meet a warm smile; it could make the difference.

7. Instead of nit picking about what the retailer in your town calls the holiday, be patient with the people who work there. Give them a warm smile and a kind word. Even if they aren't allowed to wish you a "Merry Christmas" that doesn't keep you from wishing them one. Then stop shopping there on Sunday. If the store didn't make so much money on that day they'd close and let their employees spend the day at home with their families.

8. If you really want to make a difference, support a missionary - especially one who takes My love and Good News to those who have never heard My name.

9. Here's a good one. There are individuals and whole families in your town who not only will have no "Christmas" tree, but neither will they have any presents to give or receive. If you don't know them, buy some food and a few gifts and give them to the Salvation Army or some other charity which believes in Me and they will make the delivery for you.

10. Finally, if you want to make a statement about your belief in and loyalty to Me, then behave like a Christian. Don't do things in secret that you wouldn't do in My presence. Let people know by your actions that you are one of mine. Don't forget; I am God and can take care of Myself. Just love Me and do what I have told you to do. I'll take care of all the rest. Check out the list above and get to work; time is short. I'll help you, but the ball is now in your court. And do have a most blessed Christmas with all those whom you love and remember:

I LOVE YOU, JESUS ~Earthly Author Unknown~

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Clearing out picture files

Today (which is actually December 12 no matter where blogger says this post goes) is quite cold and rainy here in North Texas - I realized I never had posted some clear blue sky, warm autumn day pictures and with my normal contrarian streak - here they are! Non-Christmas and without real context - but I like'em! If someone reads this - be aware I'll be posting a few recipes in the next 3 days - Lord willing and the creek doesn't rise (borrowed phrase from Tennessee Ernie Ford - rest his sweet soul). It is time to get out in the weather here on Buhlaland - brrrrr!

Last roses of what season?

We still have roses blooming - the rose bushes look just awful but the flowers keep appearing. Such a long warm spell- here is it December and we still have roses. Cool huh? Texas weather is quite variable but this is unusual even for us. The rose garden - well not at the White House in Washington but here in Buhlaland.

Changes afoot

I'm in a "maybe this thing is too boring" mode right now and messing around with fonts, colors and template. Please be patient - if anything is just too offensive please let me know - but I don't want to go "cutesey holiday decor" and yet -- well we will see what happens. I've taken off a link/notice about the salutes to fallen soldiers - not because I care any less but upon further research online - there are dozens of salutes to the brave souls who have given their all for our freedom. I have put ON and taken off a couple of things like polls (what kind of christmas tree are you - now really - that isn't me). May put up the poll offered by google - just for silliness sake - although part of this blog discipline is to focus me more on God and less on me - I'm finding that being playful isn't out of line with the nature of ourLord and Creator.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

The lonely walker?

OK - he wasn't really lonely - I was behind him taking pictures of the beautiful morning. DH was finishing up our walk about two mornings ago - it was in the low 40's type cold so we don't linger on our 2 miles. I liked the look of this picture (after I cropped out all the vehicles,trailers and stuff to the side!) Nothing earthshaking here - we've had a good week and I'm so grateful that my husband is a person who likes to exercise. We are aging (beats the alternative) so it takes more work to keep things working.
Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
2 Corinthians 4:16-18
The beauty of nature and the joys of a good husband - those things I see - but what is unseen is our blessing in Buhlaland.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Goatishness all around - Ho Ho HO!

I'm too delighted - I was mentioned in a blog! Not even MY blog! Woo Hoo! Clever Pam at Kids Kitchen posted a picture of two tiny goats in a Christmas parade (goats are wearing antlers - very ungoatlike - goats have horns or not in the case of most of OUR goats). Remember - fame only lasts for maybe 15 minutes - check it fast or I'll be gone -

Woo Hoo y'all are going to be glad!

Maybe not - I may be overstating but due to the lethargy induced by a 3 day food frenzy - I'm working on hype here. Our sweet mother in law gifted us already (she really doesn't like that wait until Christmas morning thing and we don't do the lots of gifts for Christmas thing) for our Christmas/wedding anniversary (which is January 1). We're getting a new camera! Yep - it was a compromise camera -not the total bells and whistles and "we'll never need another camera because this one upgrades" but definitely not just a point and shoot cheapie on sale everywhere. I have great hopes for publishing some pictures of birds - pictures in which you can see something more clearly than the tree in which a bird might possibly be sitting. Also will have zoom features so will get those "deer in the back pasture" issues straightened out. Exciting final note - we'll have movie capability -so perchance I can learn to post short snippets of our exciting lives! End of this tirade is that we will have a nice digital camera I can use and we both will enjoy. Other than pictures for real estate and blogging - we don't take many pics. But I bet in the coming weeks - it'll be shutterbugging time on Buhlaland. Woo Hoo!

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Thanksgiving food and memories

Don't panic, of course we spent time praying in gratitude for the OVER abundance of our blessings - we had a great walk early,just as the sun was coming up. DH and I are delighted with the beauty of where we are living.

That being said -

I hate to shock people, but for those in the south or raised by southerners - Thanksgiving is about the food, well the food and the football. Unfortunately for my "adoring public" - not much of the food turned out great. I tried several "low fat, no cholesterol, super healthy" recipes due to our current need for cholesterol lowering, fat reducing getting fittedness (not bothering to use spell checker today!). Mashed potatoes were excellent, cranberry sauce was good, gravy was OK, green beans were simply a vegetable. BEST part was the turkey breast. For 3 of us - a whole bird would have been too much. Earlier in the week, a tv chef did a herb and olive oil mixture under the turkey breast skin before cooking it and I decided to try her method. WOW - very moist, lots of flavor and the best we've done. I semi brined the breast ( for the last 2 hours of thawing it was in a huge bowl of lukewarm water salty water and seasonings). After drying off the turkey, loosened the skin to make a pocket in which to put the herbal essences (that sounds like I used hair products doesn't it?) In a Cuisinart,finely chopped onion,olive oil, fresh rosemary, fresh sage, flat leafed parsley, sea salt and a mixture of freshly ground peppercorns (white, pink , green and black - available at WalMart ). Put prepared turkey in a small roaster - in oven around 350 degrees for an hour, put the roaster cover over it for another hour. After the second hour timer went off - I began testing with digital thermometer until it reached about 175 internally. Just delish and will do this again for sure - you could use any kind of seasonings and make it totally different.

My Mom was a great cook - she made everything from scratch and our holidays were amazing meals, we'd wake up to the smell of sage, onions and celery on Thanksgiving. She usually baked the dressing separate from the turkey. Drier dressing makes a great receptor for gravy!

Dressing in my household is artery clogging level of fattening because it is made with a couple of sticks of butter,6 or 8 whole large eggs and lots of rich cornbread. To go low fat , used healthier recipe for cornbread and whole wheat bagels - added usual sauteed in broth chopped celery, onions, parlsey, pimento and mushrooms, generous measure of poultry seasoning - then eggbeaters instead of real eggs with low fat chicken broth to moisten. Turned out to have a lot of texture (euphemism for a little grainy) and plenty of taste.
Thanks Mom for teaching me to try new things (even some that definitely went in the trash )- if you don't try you don't find great new foods or for that matter new people, adventures or ways to remove facial hair.
The smells and work of a holiday definitely create nostalgia for being at home with my parents and brother - watching the Macy's parade on TV, nibbling on whatever goodies were already on the dessert table and being together as a family with inside jokes and eye rolling lame stories- all the stuff you don't know you'll ache for and miss until much later in life.

Here in Buhlaland, we ate well, too much and talked a lot about memories. It is good.

Never rains in California - but sometimes it snows in Texas!

Title refers to the song by Albert Hammond " It never rains in California But girl don't they warn ya, it pours, man it pours." The weather people sure didn't warn us , we got these HUGE snow flakes off and on for several hours. 'course since it had been over 80 degrees the day before - nothing stayed - it was mostly melted by morning. It is unusual to have this kind of weather at Thanksgiving (I recall wearing shorts and sweatshirts many holidays). Has been a year of unusual weather but it is OK in Buhlaland - we have heat, firewood and WAYYYY too much food.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Can you see the Phoenix?

The picture was from a couple of mornings ago - can you see the Phoenix (bird) - wings are spread left and right, head is on long neck in the middle. I love the concept - rising from the ashes - renewed. Feeling quite renewed and quiet in my spirit today.
From Proverbs 31 Woman daily devotional today - talking about being contented - which is truly being thankful. We all say "Happy Thanksgiving" yet we believe being happy is dependent on our circumstances instead of being happy(joyful) with the Lord's true peace.
Paul elaborates on what to think about instead of our worries -- whatever is good, true, honorable, pure, lovely, praise worthy, and right. Many things can fall into these categories, but Christ encompasses them all! This is not just "positive thinking," this is "spiritual thinking."

That's right isn't it (BTW that was all from the devotional today trying to give credit where it is due)?
We are full , watching videos, football games and nibbling. Try some raw almonds spray with buttery flavored pam season with your favorite season salt. Microwave for at least a minute and a half. Crunchy, salty and lots of fiber - good for you and WAY better than chips and dip.
I'm heading back upstairs to family room - more football, reading and being with my DH and MIL. Can I fix you a plate? We've got PLENTY - and that is good in Buhlaland!


Monday, November 19, 2007

Can't get enough of the morning light

The white fence in the background is our house - I am entranced with the golden light this fall. Rarely have such warm weather this late in the year and never have had all this grass. Supposed to get a cold spell Wednesday so it will all change. I promise to post some recipes and pictures of the finished product - just not today - today I'm praising God for letting us be in this place at this time. Am praying for some sick people and a couple of dying children - The Lord gives and the Lord takes away, Blessed be the name of the Lord. Amen. That's the update from Buhlaland - where the sun shines and flowers bloom and our hearts are grateful.

Long horned bad attitude

Our neighbor has long horned cattle - a peculairly Texas "thang". This is a steer actually - which means it was a bull but isn't now a bull. His name is Little Big Horn or LBH. No - he isn't a big sweetie - he can be quite aggressive but most of the time - he just eats and makes -- well what cattle make after they eat. For those who wonder if we really live in Texas country - yes ma'am we do. Love it here in Buhlaland and in the case of this steer - good fences DO make good neighbors!

Aliens in the pastures?

See the strange light behind her? A goat with no horns and glowing Hmmm might something strange occur in our back pastures? Whoa! What's that? A crop circle (play along with me here) - see big bare round place where all the ground is covered with grass. Eeek - now a fluffy creature walking through the crop circle - oh really it is Moe Cat striding along. So maybe it isn't a crop circle but a place we burned tree limbs two years ago that is still sterile enough so the grasses don't grow there. The light - well it is autumn in north Texas and we get mornings like this very often. Nubiana being an alien creature - now THAT is a strong possibility. I am just silly here on Buhlaland today.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

He makes it look so easy

I sometimes have trouble believing that DH can always do everything - he said he could just drive the tractor up on the trailer. Obviously once again - he can do it and I'm impressed - how cool is it on Buhlaland? Pretty cool! See it is the little things in my life that just tickle me!