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February 18, 2021

One of the Healthiest Fruits on the Planet

We are on week #33, counting down with my expectant friend. As some of you know from experience, she is getting pretty uncomfortable. My prayer for he

February 11, 2021

Fun with Jicama

At week #32, baby is a jicama in size. That’s right, a jicama. Starts with a J and sounds like an H. Jicama is a globe-shaped root vegetable with pa

February 4, 2021

Sumo, Coconut, and the Birth Month

If you’re an orange lover, I have some REALLY GOOD NEWS! The Sumo are here. Sumo oranges, that is. I wrote about them last year. If you missed that

January 28, 2021

5 Reasons Why Your Snack Bar May Not Be Your Friend

In a recent conversation, the topic of cereal/granola/protein bars came up. They appear to be a healthy snack, especially for a very busy person who i

January 21, 2021

Getting Back on Track

Baby size at 29 weeks is a butternut squash. And, like last week’s eggplant, butternut squash is technically a fruit. Since I wouldn’t care to eat

January 14, 2021

The Surprising Truth about Eggplant, and a Recipe

A large eggplant. That is the vegetable size of a baby at week #28. Oh, but wait just a minute. An eggplant is actually a FRUIT because it grows from

January 7, 2021

My Least Favorite Vegetable and a Challenge

At week #27 baby is the size of… …a head of cauliflower. Most of you know that I do not care for this vegetable. I’ve tried. Truth is that cauli

December 31, 2020

Cheers to Scallions and a New Year

At week #26, baby is the size of a scallion. The first question that popped into my head is: What’s the difference between a scallion and a green on

December 24, 2020

The Hope and Excitement of a Baby

A bit of background for my new readers: I’m taking the produce journey along with my good friend who is expecting. As we track the progression, we l

Smiles on Pansies

This is perfect pansy weather.  Cool.  Recently, I planted some of these unique annuals.  Now is their time.  As soon as mid-June hits, July for certain, these delicacies are finished.  Their color availability makes them perfect companions to the early tulips and daffodils.  And, many of them have faces…smiling faces!

Take a look next time you see a patch of them.  They look back at you, unlike any other flower that I can recall right now.  My older son used to think they had a sinister look about them, but I prefer to think they are happy and welcoming to those visiting the garden. 

My mom taught me to appreciate the pansy.  She always spoke about them in endearing terms when I was young.  We had them in early spring and I was sad when they became miserable and died.  No amount of pruning will bring them back in the heat of July and August.  At least not by my hand.

So until the threat of frost is over, these are the annuals I enjoy.  As the tulips are fading and the peonies are preparing for their glory, my pansies smile at me daily.

Even if you have not been gifted with a green thumb, plant a few so they can smile back at you, at least for today.

My garden is a slow work, pursued with love, and I don’t deny that I am proud of it.”     Claude Monet

 

One of Life’s Difficult Questions…

 

My son, the one who is eighteen, approached me with this question.  “Do you ever feel like you won’t have enough time in your life to do everything you want to do?”  My answer.  “Yes.”

He began to tell me how he has thought of so many things he would enjoy doing in life, then wonders how it will all work out.  I know exactly how he feels.  It is almost as if by the time we think we start to have things figured out, we are in the “second half of life” and hoping for at least a few more years to get it right.  God willing.

The twist is that we need all those “first half of life” experiences, every single one of them, to show us the way.  Some folks may not get to the “second half” stuff, for whatever reason.  Others may arrive a bit sooner.  Our age does not define this.  When we manage to work through the pain of falling, which is the doorway to the “second half of life” we cannot help but be changed.  We then begin to focus on what is most important in life, with no time to waste.  What a blessing! 

How do we live out the second half?  Some ideas:  we are more compassionate, more accepting; our core beliefs are woven into our being and are unshakable; the adventures of each day are just that-an adventure; we live out of our comfort zone more often than not; we are guided more by Spirit than by rules; loss and pain are part of the journey, yet our joy cannot be tampered with.  Just to name a few.   

My young son has a lot of living to do.  I look upon him with compassionate understanding, grateful to be where I am.

There is a deeper voice of God, which you must learn to hear and obey in the second half of life.”             Richard Rohr

May We Never Be Indifferent

 

Today is my birthday.  I am blessed beyond measure and am Living Large.  Friends have been posting birthday wishes on my facebook wall throughout the day.  Many have called or texted me.  I received a few cards in my mailbox and a dear friend treated me to lunch and her company.  Yes, my family remembered as well.  Life is sweet.

So what is there to be indifferent about?  Lots of happenings in our world today are not in line with what would fulfill a great birthday wish, that is, as long as all the candles were blown out.  Harmony on the planet.  Wow!  That is tough to even wrap my head around.  Not meant to be, or it would be.

I recently read a book entitled The Other Face of God by Mary Jo Leddy.  The book club I belong to chose this book.  We finished discussion on the book last night and we all thought it was a great read.  The reason we enjoyed The Other Face of God so much, is because it made us think and question and discuss and be honest with ourselves about the imperfectness in our world.  And what do we do with that?  How do we make a difference?

We first have to realize that we all make judgments on all sorts of events and people and circumstances.  Not good.  We base our judgments on what we know to be true in our foundation.  What we think may not be right or wrong; it is simply how we think.  Trouble comes about when we have to be right at the expense of being a good disciple.  Serving in love, even when it is difficult, is a tall order.  The other side of that is the thinking that nothing I do will make a difference anyway, so why bother?  We can all take small steps to make a difference in someone’s day, to make it a little brighter.  Pay it forward as the saying goes, and expect nothing in return except that warm fuzzy feeling inside that makes us smile.

Do we love each other enough?  How do we even measure such a thing?  Something to ponder, on my birthday.  I have people in my life who love me.  That is awesome!  Guess I had better get busy and make a difference, after I enjoy a piece of birthday cake. 

“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good people do nothing.”  Edmund  Burke

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Girls…Running…And Me

 

I have just returned from the 2012 Girls on the Run Summit, which took place this past week in Tampa, Florida.  The Summit is similar to what other organizations refer to as a convention.  We attended general and specific break-out sessions, had opportunities to go on group runs/walks and practice yoga together.  We shared meals, snacks and a sunset cruise.  We heard very good speakers, made new friends and snatched some sunshine.  As a board member on our Northwest Indiana Council, I was grateful for the opportunity to attend.  

What is Girls on the Run?  GOTR is an after school program for girls in grades 3 thru 5, that incorporates running to help prepare girls for a lifetime of self-respect and healthy living.  This interactive program focuses on building self-esteem and improving emotional and physical health.  Each 12-week session (one in fall and one in spring) is led by trained female coaches that guide and mentor girls through a fun, uplifting and specific curriculum.

Life lessons include dealing with body image and the media, resisting peer-pressure, making healthy choices and contributing to the community.  Along the way, the girls train to walk or run a 5K event together.

I am not a runner and I have only raised boys, but I know what a challenge it can be to be a girl.  What a positive effect this program could have on a little girl who wonders if she is worthy of love…self-love and love from others.  GOTR has served over 400,000 girls since the first season in 1996.  If you are looking for a cause to help fill your life with purpose, GOTR is a great place to begin your search.

“The greatest act of bravery is simply being ourselves.”  Molly Barker, founder of Girls on the Run

For more information, go to www.girlsontherun.org and www.gotrofnwi.org