Authentic Compassion

Sunday, June 28, 2009

I haven't Croaked!

Terrence the Toad reminded me I haven't checked in on the bloggy world in over a week.
Buhlaland is literally crawling with toads - from smaller than a dime to critters the size of a hardball -all intent on finding moisture and bugs. Bugs we have in abundance but this summer moisture comes out of a hose or sprinkler. Don't want to rant about weather -we've been in a warmish spell (nighttime lows in the high 70's) and today saw 102 on our deeply shaded porch thermometer.
Weather and toads don't have a thing to do with why I'm not blogging. DH hasn't been well (we think he is slowly improving - not terminal just tiring) , I'm stressing about finding a job and generally ignoring the biblical admonition "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God." Phil. 4:6 NIV
We have always had more than abundant provision. We are daily reminded of God's faithfulness in our walk with Him. My head and most of my heart knows things will work out better than I could have imagined -- my stomach and bit of my often rebellious heart keep bringing up "what if it doesn't happen this time?" BUT - we rely on God's grace He is more than enough.
If I had a picture of a nice frog - then I could use the acronym Fully Rely On God and be all clever. So you have to accept my word for it - FROG works.
The sweet doe (I suppose she is sweet - she hangs around here and has beautiful eyes - for all we really know - she might be the head of the Mean Girls in her herd!) still hangs around our place. Saw her and her fawn a week or more ago - trotting along in our front pasture and then leaping over a 5 foot tall fence as if it were nothing.
So little real news, the toads and I decided to check in with the blog world. It is hot, quiet and healing on Buhlaland and that is good. Ribbit--ribbit

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Read the Word (s)

Most of us have several bibles (I won't go off on the very disturbing reality we seldom wear out our bibles.) and at least in our household we have 4 or 5 translations and a paraphrase (The Message is not a translation). This morning in our readings I was quite taken by the simple, firm beauty of Micah 6:8 - for those who try to make walking with the Lord complex or legalistic or ritualistic - read the WORDS.

Micah 6:8 (Contemporary English Version)
8The LORD God has told us
what is right
and what he demands:
"See that justice is done,
let mercy be your first concern,
and humbly obey your God."

Micah 6:8 (The Message)
8But he's already made it plain how to live, what to do, what God is looking for in men and women. It's quite simple: Do what is fair and just to your neighbor, be compassionate and loyal in your love,And don't take yourself too seriously— take God seriously.

Please don't take yourself too seriously -and remember to be grateful and loving. Tomorrow is Father's Day - I miss my Daddy and hope any of you blessed to still have your father with you will make the day extra special.
It is blooming here on Buhlaland - canna blossoms and faith. That is good - very good.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Pigging out!

Good Monday to you! We had friends over Sunday afternoon to share a meal - decided to barbecue which might not have been a wise choice - heat index was a mere 104!. DH persevered and cooked all the kebabs everyone assembled.
Wanted to give extra flavor to the pork but not traditional red sauce and DH dislikes the vinegary barbecue baste. We have a small forest of rosemary in the garden and always have extra virgin olive oil (or EVOO). Pantry yielded a big container of peppercorn medley (from the center of gourmet cooking - Wally World!).
We were kebabing the meats so I cut a nice pork roast into large cubes (the little brass pig with a lucky pence in his back represents about 3 pounds of pork - cooked pork photographs ugly and we cooked all I marinated).

Took the cubes of pork, about 1/3-1/2 cup of EVOO, at least one tablespoon of very coarsely ground pepper (could have just been broken up in a mortar and pestle but I don't have one). Added 5 or 6 good sized pieces(would translate into 4 to 6 inch long sprigs) of rosemary in the container and sealed it up. Marinated for at least 4 hours (in the fridge - seems goofy to add the refrigeration part but don't want anybody getting poisoned by my recipes!). Next time I think we'll try overnight marinating. Everyone really liked the pork - in fact they ate more pork than the chinese marinated chicken or pure and delicious rib eye steaks. Just a thought since it is BBQ season and sometimes you want something different. Same concept would work great with a pork tenderloin or chops.

We had such a lovely day on Buhlaland and as if having pleasant company and good food weren't enough --we had a beautiful visitor after the human guests were gone. The doe is still limping a lot and we haven't seen the fawn again but are grateful to have the beauty of creation - up close and personal! It is good on Buhlaland --good friends, good food and goodness it was HOT.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Stormy evening

We didn't get any real damage - wanted to share our intense storm with those of you who like lots of thundery, windy weather wildness. The hailstones are shown in my hand (to give a perspective of size). The downpour from our downspout shows the side garden being well rinsed out.

The storm let up a little but still plenty of rain coming down.
Our driveway looked a little like a waterpark for a half hour or so. After a little while, as always true to His Word, rainbows began to appear in the sky and soon from the west evening light brightened up our sunset.

It was truly awe inspiring on Buhlaland - thank you Lord for your creations.

Quick Hi Y'all

I may be hitting the wall blog-verbially speaking (making up words is one of my few creative endeavors). Cannot seem to find a reason to post other than I want to stay in touch with my wonderful blogospheric friends. The roses are now serving as buffets for thrips. Insecticidal soap to the rescue!
Fence picture is example of with goats (on the left) and non goat pasture. Fencing is between our pasture and property of our beloved neighbor to the north. Advantage for us - no mowing. Advantage for him - lots of wildflowers. Ooh - just realized - advantage for us - seeing his wildflowers and not having to mow -- woo hoo!

Last picture is my feet - I know you've been waiting for this moment for ages - NOT. Odd loop in the right corner of pic is camera strap - I'm so professional in my photography (point, shoot - shoot lots more and find a good picture out of dozens - publish any picture if none are good - now you know full repertoire of photography tricks).

Crocs are as close to barefoot as I go when outside - yesterday we had an unseasonable heavy rainstorm. On my way out to goat pens I stepped in a low place in our lawn and was tremendously refreshed with a flow of cold water through the holes in my shoes. Grateful for nearly 2 inches of rainfall in past 36 hours and we didn't have any serious wind damage.

Appreciating the blessings of downpours this week on Buhlaland. If something comes to mind I'll definitely be back to post. It is good here, muggy, but good on Buhlaland.

Monday, June 8, 2009

What DO you see?

Looking out toward the front of our property from our house porch. Definitely a summer afternoon - temperatures in the low 90's and a little breeze but plenty hot.

We are hoping this little one was just "parked" here by it's mom. It is less than 50 feet from our front door so I'm not taking my evening walk until it is gone - don't want to spook mama from picking her baby back up. I love being here on Buhlaland and it is peaceful enough in our front yard this deer feels safe in our yard. Cool huh?

Saturday, June 6, 2009

When Life Hands You Lemons - ---

--go find some butter, flour and sugar - and make this cake!

I owe y'all an apology-- I've been AWOR (absent without reason) for a long while. Somehow blogging started being a "have to" rather than a "want to" and I stopped. Not sure how often I'll update now - life seems hell bent on teaching me lessons (some of which I'll address in other postings). For your edification and enlightenment - I'll share one of the lessons (ready for this??? are you SURE you are ready for this??)


  • Feel free to embroider on pillows my bit of original brilliance. I dillied and dallied even could have been some shillying and shallying after mentioning the lemon cake. Time passed (as it is wont to do) and almost forgot what I HAD done to make the cake. It isn't one of my fast and easy recipes but definitely a worth-the-work-taste once 'tis all done. Here we are:

    Lemonade Cake
    • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
    • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1 1/2 cups sugar
    1 tablespoon lemon zest.
    • 2 large eggs plus 2 large egg yolks
    • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
    3 tablespoons frozen lemonade concentrate
    • 1 cup low-fat buttermilk
    Lemon Glaze:
    ½ cup granulated sugar
    ¼ cup water
    ¼ cup lemonade (or lemon juice)
    One thinly sliced and seeded lemon
    1 (8 ounce) package Neufchatel or Cream Cheese – at room temperature
    2 tablespoons butter at room temperature
    1 (16 ounce) package powdered sugar (sifted if it appears lumpy)
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest

    Cake: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray with cooking spray and flour two 8-by-2-inch cake pans, tapping out excess flour. I also use waxed paper or parchment to line cake pans – spray a little cooking spray in the bottom of the cake pan – place paper then spray and flour the paper. In a medium bowl, whisk flour, lemon zest, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
    In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy. With mixer on low, beat in eggs and yolks, one at a time. Beat in vanilla and lemonade concentrate. Alternately beat in flour mixture and buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture; mix just until combined.
    Divide batter evenly between pans; smooth tops. Bake until cakes pull away from sides of pans, 32 to 35 minutes.
    NOTE: While cakes are baking, bring ½ cup sugar, 1/4 cup lemon juice or lemonade and 1/4 cup water to a boil in a saucepan. Add 1 thinly sliced and seeded lemon and simmer 25 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer lemon slices to waxed-paper-lined plate
    When cake layers test done – remove from oven and cool in pans 10 minutes. Run a knife around edges of pans and invert cakes onto a wire rack. Remove the waxed paper or parchment which was in the pan and now stuck to bottom of cake!
    Using a toothpick, poke holes in warm cakes on rack. Brush with lemon syrup. Let cool completely. Frost cooled cakes and top with candied lemon slices.

    Put cream cheese and butter in bowl of mixer and mix on medium speed until completely blended. Add lemon zest and slowly add the powdered sugar until frosting is well blended, add the vanilla extract. Frost the completely cooled cake and it should be refrigerated.
  • I should have added - put the candied lemon slices on top as decoration -

Friday, June 5, 2009


Wren - probably a Carolina wren is our best guess on the type of bird who recently nested here on Buhlaland. They built a nest up under our propane tank cover using twigs and leaves and goat hair (clever little boids) . Tiny eggs - cream colored with burgundy splotches. ( the egg for extreme closeup was one which didn't hatch - left in the abandoned nest - no baby birds were injured in the making of this blog post).

Next time we checked there were 5 tiny nekkid bodies and wide open mouths! Feathers began covering the little boidies bodies.

Thursday I realized I hadn't seen mama bird or heard her melodious call.

Final nest check showed nobody home anymore - a birder friend told me they "fledged" - what a wonderful word. I'm going to use it until it is part of my vocabulary (probably not as often as I will use the term y'all but not every word is as functional as every other word - even to a fledgling linguist!)

Hope all your baby birds and wishes are fledging successfully this spring and summer. I'll be back - not sure how often but here on Buhlaland we seem to have a pattern of all nothing. We are living on erratic blogging and high excitement of bird nest events! Early summer is quite good here on Buhlaland.