ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY

tl-11-9-first-airplane-flight-to-last-more-than-5-minutesIt’s such a part of our everyday life these days…  flying!  I can hardly imagine a time when there were not aircraft in the sky, can you?  Well, there were not planes flying prior to 1903, and in the grand scheme of history, that’s not that long ago.

The Wright brothers were the first to invent aircraft controls that made fixed-wing powered flight possible.  This day in 1904 marks the first airplane flight to last more than 5 minutes.

You haven’t seen a tree until you’ve seen its shadow from the sky.   – Amelia Earhart

Aren’t people just the most amazing creatures?  How were we talked into trusting a pilot to fly a plane hundreds of miles above the ground to get us from point A to point B?  Some of us are still not convinced that air travel is safe, but then we hear people talk about how statistically, flying is much safer than driving a car.

We’ve all gotta to sometime!  LOL  – Lucinda Berry Hill

Arr arr arr, our resident poet is hilarious!

Many Christians I know will argue that no matter what you’re doing – when God’s ready to take you, He’s going to take you!  The point is…  don’t worry so much about what you’re doing.  Enjoy life as long as you’re allowed to enjoy it.  I admit, there’s a tiny voice inside me that asks, “But why tempt fate?”

There are only two emotions in a plane:  boredom and terror.   – Orson Welles

Leave it to Orson Welles to make THAT observation, right?

I’ve flown a couple of times, but I am a bit of an anxious flyer.  I need to have earphones to drown out the sound of the engines for take-off.  I take Dramamine.  I pretty much knock myself out so I don’t notice what’s going on around me.  I am NOT the person you want to seat beside the emergency exit!  LOL!  I do have faith that I can fly…  I’m just not sure that applies in a LITERAL sense.  Come to think of it, I take Dramamine for all kinds of travel, so…  I think I’m just an anxious traveler regardless of the mode of transportation.

Modern air travel gets us where we’re wanting to go fast, but it’s such a hassle!

It’s stressful getting through lines.  – Mary Alexander

I get the impression that most of the folks in my group, A SECOND HELPING OF WELLNESS… WITH A DASH OF HUMOR & A PINCH OF FAITH, are as enthused with air travel as I am…  um…  yeah.

Air travel has never been one of my favorite things to do.  – John Manganiello

Even though it’s not something I relish, the times I’ve flown have been memorable.  We booked a trip through a travel agency one year and was not informed when our flight got rescheduled.  We were late getting to the airport and ended up spending the night there.  That was a fun night.  I never wanted to go home so much in my life.

Have you ever wandered the Atlanta airport aimlessly with every piece of luggage you own?  I have.  Woo-flippin’-hoo!  That’s also the flight that taught me to turn the little lock when you go into the restroom on the plane.  I don’t really wanna say much more than that.  I know some things should be self-explanatory but…  to those of us who are not frequent fliers, they aren’t always.  The good news is – I’m not likely to forget that little detail again.

One July 4th we happened to be flying home from an NALCC (National Autumn Leaf Collector’s Club) convention.  It was amazing!  Have you ever seen fireworks explode from above?  I have!  WOW – it’s such a cool sight!  Unfortunately I didn’t have either a camera or video camera with me, so…  no proof that I’ve seen them, but I keep the memories and think of it every July 4th.

Lucinda wrote a poem about having the faith to fly.

oh-to-flyWhether you’re a fan of flying in a plane or not, you have to admit that flying has changed everything.  Progress or digress???  It depends on how you see it, I guess.  🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WE’VE PACKED OUR DUDS… LET’S GO

WE'VE PACKED OUR DUDS... LET'S GO!

FAMILY VACATION

We recently enjoyed a great trip to Peoria, IL for the National Autumn Leaf Collector’s Club convention.  We renewed friendships, had lovely conversations and of course we shopped for Hall china.  Even though the folks in the club collect the autumn leaf pattern, there are always a few other patterns for sale as well.

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As serious as we are about our collection, we are more serious about the entertainment at our end of the week banquet!  I especially enjoyed the entertainment this year because I LOVE ELVIS!  Okay, the guy had the wig and the big (BIG) dark glasses, so I don’t really think he LOOKED like Elvis without all that, but I sat and listened – and when I closed my eyes, it was like the KING of Rock & Roll was in the room – no joke!  He was really good.  😀027

ME & ELVIS

I told “Elvis” that I enjoyed his performance and that when I closed my eyes, he sounded just like the original Elvis.  Still in character, he did the “Elvis lip” (you will either understand that or you won’t)…  and said, “Thank you…  thank you very much.”  I also told him I didn’t think he needed a gym membership, as I’m pretty sure these shows keep him very fit.  He said, “This was my only show today.  Sometimes I do 2 or 3 a day.”

I have found the history of Hall China and the autumn leaf pattern quite interesting.  As usual, I wrote a poem about it.  I was so tickled that it was published in the NALCC newsletter!  I’m not sure if I’ve shared it here on the blog, but I’m going to share it here today.

WE THANK YOU SINCERELYWe began collecting these dishes because my husband’s mother had them and used them every day.   There was a time when a little brown truck delivered not only dishes, but cleaning supplies and food products to your door.  No, it wasn’t UPS…  it was the Jewel Tea man!  I was chatting with a former sales rep with Jewel about how the times changed and Jewel had a difficult time changing with them.  When women started leaving the home to work full-time jobs, they were no longer home during the day, so the need for home delivery was not necessary anymore.

I wonder how House of Schwan stays in business?  Hmm…  maybe they are willing to deliver their products to the workplace.  And they sell food – wonderful yummy food.

When our convention ended, we headed east on I-70.  Illinois to Indiana…  Indiana to Ohio.  We don’t change our watches or the clock in our truck when we cross a time zone, but once in a while I forgot that we needed to add an hour…  it got interesting.  😉

We shopped at a few antique stores along the way, of course.  The closer to the Longaberger Homestead we got, the more of their baskets I found!  I also found some sugar-free apple butter for $4.50 a jar at Webb’s Antique Mall in Centerville, IL.  I picked up several jars because it is a mere 4 grams of carbs per serving!  They sell apple butter here in Wichita, but I’ve not seen any sugar-free varieties.  Score!

Dutch Country Kettle sugar-free apple butter is delicious and does not raise my blood glucose.  🙂  This morning I spread some on my hotcakes, made with Carbquick (a product similar to Bisquick, but 90% lower in carbohydrates).

DCK%20Sugar%20Free%20Apple%20Butter

This will sound weird, but consider the source.  😉  We didn’t want to pay S&H on Carbquick, so we got online and found a grocery store in Terre Haute, IN that sells it.

BAESLER’S MARKET
2900 POPLAR ST.
TERRE HAUTE, IN 47803
Phone: 812-232-2498

We bought a few boxes, packed them in the truck and kept going east.

We finally got to the Longaberger Homestead!  YAY!!!  We made (actually I made…) a TAKE ALONG basket with dark purple and bright green accent colors that will look very nice in our dining room.  We’re going to put it on our bench in front of the bay window.  We found a plate that says HAPPY ANNIVERSARY in pewter, and got a free heart-shaped tie-on that we can customize for it.  A great big THANK YOU to Lisa at Longaberger’s Homestead for helping me make my basket.  050

053TA DA…

My husband booked a night at The Inn at Dresden for our 30th wedding anniversary.

THE INN ON THE HILL

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The view was remarkable!  Hills are not what I’m accustomed to, having lived in Kansas my whole life.  This was so nice.064066067068069071We stayed in the Gallery room – down a couple of flights of stairs and to the left as far as you can go…  very nice. 063

LOL…  a greeter stood at the end of the hallway!  He said about as much as most Walmart greeters I’ve met…  ha!062

061Isn’t that a pretty painted piece?  There was a tray with two glasses and a carafe’ setting on a tray on top of the little fridge.  It was filtered ice water – so refreshing!  It tasted so good after walking up that hill to get back to the Inn.  Toto, I don’t think this is Kansas!  That bit of exploration was just a practice jaunt for what hiking was ahead…  😉

080Two different kinds of clouds there…  :-/

We spent the day going from store to store in downtown Dresden.  I found a lid for my waste basket and was so excited about it – what a weird thing to get excited about, huh???

When we got to Logan, Ohio, we stopped at the Welcome Center to ask questions and make the usual pit stop…  LOL.  121

Sorry lady – I try not to get a shot with people in it unless they’re people I know.  Oops.  Hey – you see that little brown building on the R.H. side of the photo???  Guess what that is?  You’ll never guess…  nah, you’re way off…  want me to tell ya?  It’s a PENCIL SHARPENER MUSEUM!  Nope – not joking – that’s what it is.  We got pictures!124 125127128129130131I had no idea such a museum existed…  did you???  Well – now we know – it does!123

The friendly lady at the welcome center was so helpful.  She highlighted the trails and told us which ones would be the easiest to walk.  I appreciated having that information.  We decided to try to do a little hiking in Ohio.  Logan, Ohio is so beautiful and is the home of Hocking Hills State Park.  There are several hiking trails and we knew we couldn’t walk all of them.  We went to see Old Man’s Cave first.  I like the bridge inside.

A nice young man offered to take both our photos behind the sign.  You don’t always feel trusting, but when he asked, “You want me to take both youin’s picture?”  – we decided it was probably okay and we appreciate his kindness.  It’s nice to know that some people do good deeds because it’s a good thing to do.136

139140143146Okay, this is going to sound totally weird…  but when I saw this photo of the bridge, I was reminded of the painting by Thomas Kinkade – Bridge of Hope.  Don’t ask me why, but it looks like that painting to me.  Of course, the colors are not at all similar, but the arrangement somehow – the trees and so forth.  Oh well, moving on…

There were not too many stairs at Old Man’s Cave – but I can’t say the same for Cedar Falls…  going down the stairs was not so bad – it was coming back up that was painful on my poor knees!

147149150152There were all kinds of fish in the water, but we never expected to see this little dude!  153

154They told us at the Logan Welcome Center that they needed rain and the falls were not as full of water as usual.  I guess Kansas is not the only state in need of moisture.  😦

Fortunately, we were traveling with a jar of Miracle Ice – our joints were well cared for after that hike!  But isn’t it beautiful?  The videos don’t do them justice.  It was nice to get away from television and radio broadcasts for a day – and be totally connected with nature and the God who made it.  I’m praying for rain…  we all need it.  🙂

 

 

 

ROLL, FOLD OR FILE

WE'VE PACKED OUR DUDS... LET'S GO!

When you pack a suitcase, do you roll or fold?  Rolling causes more wrinkling but takes up less space.

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Folding does not cause wrinkling but takes up more space.

16291949977_ee9891f8c7_qLet me introduce you to a third method that does not wrinkle and takes up less space – I call it filing.

IMG_1322It’s fold – and flip!  It’s not purty, but you can fit a bunch of stuff in there!  I know it looks like this would be a wrinkled mess – but trust me, it really isn’t.  Think of it this way – if you put the luggage in the vehicle handle-side up, then the clothing is basically folded and stacked – facing the way it would in a drawer – right?  See what I’m sayin’?  I have room to fit two pairs of shoes there in the upper R.H. corner of the bag.  I put the shoes there so the WEIGHT of the shoes won’t smush the clothes.  So I can fit ten days worth of clothes plus two pairs of shoes in one suitcase.

Everyone has a certain item that goes with them on vacation. For me, it’s my pillow!  Most pillows in hotel or motel rooms leave me with a sore neck and cranky disposition – just what you want while you’re trying to have a good time, right?  I tote my pillow in its carrying case, so that’s probably the only item that is a total no-brainer.  Everything else is trial and error.  There are two of us trying to use two bags for a ten-day trip.  It’s insane, but we worked it out.

The trick is to convince your suitcase that it can hold more than it thinks it can.  Bring out the best in it.  It has so much potential…  talk nicely to it.  Suitcases have feelings too, ya know.  Whoa…  I think I need a vacation.angry-suitcase-doe-eyed-suitcase

Do you usually fold your clothes and stack them like you would in a drawer?  Most of us do that – and that’s great if you’re going on a short trip or if you’re packing one person’s stuff.  We packed ten changes of clothes each – in two suitcases – yep.

If you fold the clothes but put them in the case as though the clothes were “files” and your suitcase was the “file cabinet” – you can get 22 items packed without smashing it too badly.  We never wear anything that is very high maintenance – in other words, we wear a lot of cotton / poly instead of 100% cotton.  That bit of poly can make a big difference in the wrinkle factor.  Most hotels have hangers and drawers, so if you are overly concerned about wrinkles, you can take things from the suitcase and hang them up or put them in the drawers.  Then hope you don’t forget anything when you leave.  :-/

When all the clothes are packed in the largest suitcases and our toiletries go in the smallest case – we just have those three and my pillow bag to mess with.  We rarely fly, but I would think that would be the way to go if you are flying.  We just don’t like to carry a lot of luggage around – and the file drawer way of packing works best for us.  🙂

 

 

 

 

WE’VE PACKED OUR DUDS… LET’S GO!!!

WE'VE PACKED OUR DUDS... LET'S GO!

There’s a major snow storm coming our way!  We’ve known about it for a few days and as temperatures reached the mid 60’s last Friday and Saturday, we decided to get out and enjoy it!  We headed south on 1-35 and on to the Kansas Turnpike.  In winter the Kansas prairie is not terribly interesting and there are leafless dead trees lining the highway, but as we got closer to the Oklahoma border, we saw the wind turbines waving at us!

In case you’re wondering, yes – I waved back.  Yeah – I didHello, happy little wind turbines!  Yes, I am FUN on a trip – pray for my poor husband, will ya???  IMG_0003Once we got past the waving turbines, we knew the Oklahoma border was not far away.  We stayed on the turnpike for another hour and a half once in Oklahoma – we got off at exit 194 and drove about 30 miles west on highway 412 to Enid, Oklahoma.  I love brand new adventures, don’t you? 

We found a few really nice antique stores, but sadly, a couple of the stores had gone out of business.  😦

Broadway Mall gets a 5-basket rating from this Longaberger collector!  The baskets were all over the store, so some hunting was required (but that’s part of the fun, right?)  https://www.facebook.com/broadwayantiquesenid/  LIKE them on facebook!

IMG_0004IMG_0005I took this photo from inside the truck – that’s why it looks like there’s a car driving on the roof – it’s just a reflection.  I assure you there was NOT a car driving on the roof!  https://www.facebook.com/Broadway-Exchange-528702237171093/  LIKE Broadway Exchange on facebook.

Not everything was antique, but I like to look at new stuff too, so that’s okay.  I found a couple of small baskets there because most of the antiques are large pieces like beds and dressers.  I liked this place because it’s so well-organized and there was plenty of room to walk around.IMG_0006Just a block from Broadway is Maine St. and look at that sweet ride setting there!  I just had to get a picture of it!  Then we went to the thrift store to look around.  Larry was looking for antiques (because sometimes you find the unexpected in thrift stores) and I was looking at vintage clothing.  Neither of us found a treasure – but that happens sometimes too.IMG_0007Here’s another blast from the past!  We were on our way to eat dinner at Chick-fil-A and were stopped at a traffic light.  I think that’s probably the original paint too – isn’t that neat?  Someone has taken very good care of it!

IMG_0008There are so many reasons to LIKE Chick-fil-A, but they impress me because:

  1. The employees serve their customers as if they are serving their MASTER, Christ Jesus (it’s Biblical – and it makes such a difference!)
  2. I heard children in the booth behind me saying EXCUSE ME (in a nice tone), PLEASE, THANK YOU, and they asked their parents… MAY I GO PLAY?
  3. There are literally DOZENS of condiments as well as straws, napkins, etc.  They are in a clean and tidy area.  I’m not sure how they can have mayonnaise in packets unrefrigerated…  regular and light – but they DO!  It’s a good thing, because I like lite mayo on my chicken sandwich.
  4. This goes in the GO THE EXTRA MILE FILE…  They put fresh carnations in a little vase on every single table – every single day!  I was looking around and thought about how SPECIAL they make their customers feel.  I feel special when I’m at Chick-fil-A.  https://www.facebook.com/chickfilaenid/  LIKE them on facebook!

Friday night we stayed over at a local motel…  I won’t say much about it because we were less than tickled with the experience.  But then Saturday morning rolled around…

IMG_0009There’s a Wally World in Enid – YAY!!!  If you know me, you know that Walmart is how I roll.  We ate breakfast at McDonald’s located on the market side.  I tried their new maple and fruit oatmeal, and it’s pretty good – and surprisingly did not raise my blood sugar too much.  Since it’s maple and fruit, I expected a significant rise, but was pleasantly surprised.  It’s also under 300 calories.  Good to know.IMG_0010You know how some folks go on vacation and they take beautiful photos of the sunrise – it rises over the beach or over a large body of water???  This is my sunrise photo for this trip – the sun is rising over the Walmart.  Isn’t it beautiful?  Who needs palm trees anyway???

As we were traveling down 412 west, we saw the funniest thing – and I didn’t get a photo (sorry, I was too slow) – but there was a little piglet grazing in the median!  I’m not joking – we laughed – and I said, “ONLY IN OKLAHOMA!!!”  I wish I had taken a photo – but it just came up on us so fast!IMG_0016We got back on the turnpike heading for Tonkawa, Oklahoma…  I like this sign – it’s a business that fixes big rigs – but that sign – well – it’s a TRUCK!  It’s been there for years – I think it’s really cool.  I don’t know if you can read it, but it says, WE FIX TRUCKSIMG_0017Welcome to Tonkawa, Oklahoma!  This is a Santa Fé caboose.  I think trains just look naked without the caboose – but I’ve had time to get used to the idea.  LOL – 😉IMG_0021This restaurant caught my attention for two reasons:  (1) The spiral staircase and (2) I was HUNGRY!  We didn’t eat there, but I still think it’s a really neat looking place – I’m keeping it in mind for a future trip.IMG_0022About two years ago we were in Tonkawa antique shopping and had good luck finding things in this store.  Apparently the place changed hands, because it is now more of a thrift store.  I didn’t mind, because I found some vintage clothing and a coffee mug that says SMILE, GOD LOVES YOU that Hallmark made years ago.  I didn’t get one back then, but I have one now.  Works for me!  I can afford $1.00.  I remember looking at those mugs at the Hallmark store years ago – but they were so expensive, no way could I get one.  I love how God works things out if we just let Him have it – big or small.

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We got off the turnpike to go to Blackwell, Oklahoma.  There was a VERY long truck with a wide load driving ahead of us at about 20 MPH.  Once we got to Blackwell, we decided to try to get ahead of the truck by taking some back roads to get downtown.  Sounded like a good plan to me, but the trouble was – we got about halfway to our destination – and an Oklahoma State Trooper came around the corner – lights flashing.  LOL…  it was the big rig!  Instead of getting ahead of it – we MET it.  But – I got this really cool photo of the monster in the intersection.  Isn’t that massive???  With two Trooper cars and a Pilot vehicle, hopefully that thing will get where it’s going.  What is that thing they’re hauling, anyhow???  Does anyone know???

Eventually we got to Ashby’s in Blackwell.  We didn’t find much there – went to the Braum’s for lunch and got back on the turnpike to go home.  LIKE Ashby’s on facebook!  https://www.facebook.com/ashbysantiquemall/

We’re thankful to God for another safe journey!  We’re so glad you got to come along!  🙂

For more information about the places to visit in Enid, OK, go to http://Info@VisitEnid.org  The Enid Welcome Center is at 201 W. Owen K. Garriott Rd., Enid, OK  73701 / 580-233-3643 / Open Mon-Fri 8am-Noon, 1pm-5pm

Antique / Thrift / Consignment Shops in Enid:

BECKY’S CONSIGNMENT SHOP 123 E. Broadway  580-297-5118

BROADWAY ANTIQUES & UNIQUES 129 E. Broadway 580-297-5113

BROADWAY EXCHANGE 211 E. Broadway 580-540-9171

PARK AVENUE THRIFT 507 S. Grand 580-233-7275

JWL RETURN ENGAGEMENT 123 N. Grand 580-234-0624

LOLA’S BOUTIQUE 224 W. Randolph 580-542-0133

COMMUNITY THRIFT & GIFT 130 E. Randolph 580-297-5133

BRAND NAME EXCHANGE 114 N. Independence 580-237-8336

CHER-DEN’S 827 W. Maine 580-237-6881

KARMA’S RETRO SHOPPE & FLEA MARKET 1713 S. Van Buren 580-748-0353

HOPE OUTREACH THRIFT STORE 215 S. Van Buren 580-237-4673

Most of these shops have websites and are on facebook.  🙂

 

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

TL A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART (16)

… and meanwhile, back in Kansas – What is John Coyote up to?  Let’s take a look at his latest videos!

http://youtu.be/xlWjvaKDpGk

He said this video was taken at Little Walnut River, ten miles southeast of Augusta. Kansas.  There is a unique beauty here in Kansas – or maybe I’m just biased in my opinion – ya think? 

http://youtu.be/yoqQ95QLcOk

I want today’s post to serve as a gentle reminder that we should get outdoors while we still can.  Before long the weather will be too bad and we’ll be stuck indoors – and you know what that means…  CABIN FEVER!  What will you do before the first snow of the year?

If you live in or around Kansas, you might want to take in the 16th annual Homemade Holidays Craft Show in Ottawa on November 14th.  It’s held at the Ottawa and Franklin County Visitor Information Center at 1230 S. Ash from 9am – 4pm.  I believe it’s free – (at least I saw no mention of a charge).  For more information you can call them at 785-229-8030.

Are you in the mood for some relaxing music and a bunch of friendly folks?  THIRD SATURDAY is also going on in Ottawa through December 19th when everyone in the community comes together for a fun relaxing day.

November 21st is the annual Christmas Festival and Parade of Lights in beautiful downtown Salina, Kansas.  I didn’t see what time it begins, but I’m guessing it’s around 10-ish.

The Downtown Holiday Parade in Hutchinson, Kansas is also on November 21st at 10am.  Good luck being in two places at the same time.  Why do they do that?

Kansas has a Swedish community not far from Wichita called Lindsborg.  It’s a college town and they have unique shops and restaurants.  Every Sun, Tues, Wed, Thurs, Fri & Sat from November 8th – January 24th they will have the Birger Sandzen Holiday Gift Show at the Memorial Art Gallery at 401 N. First St.  For more information about that you can call them at 785-227-2220.

An evening stroll may be a little brisk these days, but in Wellington, Kansas they have the First Friday Art walk at the No. 7 Coffee House at 115 S. Washington from 5pm – 7pm.  I guess you grab a cup of their coffee to keep warm before you walk – or even while you walk – good thinking, No. 7!  For more information you can give them a call at 620-326-6777.

There’s still time to get out and go before we get stuck indoors!  These are all fun activities – but I think my friend John has the right idea – just go out and enjoy nature!  You never know what you may learn.  🙂

DAY TRIPPIN’ AROUND KANSAS

DAY TRIPPIN' AROUND KANSAS

Is it silly to want to take a trip out to Applejack Pumpkin Patch if you don’t have small children with you?  Can I tell you a secret???  I’ve never actually been to a pumpkin patch before.  I suppose it’s because I don’t have kids – but the second part of that secret is…  I’ve always wanted to visit a pumpkin patch!  It just looks like a lot of fun!  Having fun is not a sin – last time I checked.

So, this photo, taken just outside of the Applejack Pumpkin Patch is of my friend, Susan.  She posted it on facebook and I wanted to post it here today.  I love it when my Wichita friends post their day trips (even though I think she was technically on the job – which explains the vest).  I appreciate her giving me permission to share it with you.

The Minion Hay Bale... LOL!!!
Susan & the giant Minion Hay Bale… LOL!!!

I’m so thankful she posted this because we drove past it on the way to an antique store just a few days ago – and did I have my camera???  Well of course I didn’t!!!  I was kicking myself from that moment on.  I even suggested we take another trip just to get a photo of this.  That idea was not met with a great deal of enthusiasm, to say the least.  :-/

Applejack Pumpkin Patch is in Augusta, Kansas.  They have a facebook page:  https://www.facebook.com/Applejack-Pumpkin-Patch-306961532736120/

There are scheduled activities and loads of fun for everyone (even the childless – well – probably).  I may not have kids – but I feel as though I’m still a kid myself…  for better or worse!

I’ve seen bales of hay made into a lot of different things – I must admit this is the first Minion I’ve seen – how creative is that?  Usually we see hay bales made into  jack-O-Lanterns…  you know, painted orange with the scary black face – that’s usually what we see.

Susan’s husband posted that if she had her way, Susan would take this giant Minion hay bale home with her and put it in their front yard.  I replied by saying, “She would be fighting ME for it – LOL!!!”  In reality, could you imagine either one of us – or both of us together – lifting that thing???  I’d say the argument is moot at best, wouldn’t you?

If you would like more information about Applejack Pumpkin Patch, click on this link:  http://applejackpumpkinpatch.com/activities/

Click image to enlarge

I enjoy living in Kansas, especially this time of year!  We have a lot of farms, which means we have tons of corn mazes, apple festivals, fall harvest celebrations and of course, pumpkin patches!  Now, we apparently have added a giant Minion hay bale to the list.  Does it get any better than that?  I think not!  Wink!  😉

 

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

 TL A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART (30)

9-22 FOR THE WATCHFUL EYE

The foliage has been losing its freshness through the month of August, and here and there a yellow leaf shows itself like the first gray hair amidst the locks of a beauty who has seen one season too many…. September is dressing herself in showy dahlias and splendid marigolds and starry zinnias. October, the extravagant sister, has ordered an immense amount of the most gorgeous forest tapestry for her grand reception.  – Oliver Wendell Holmes

I’ve shared a bit of the fun we have in late summer/early fall here in Kansas!  Our menus change from salads to stews!  Every woman in Kansas is reviewing their recipe cards and stocking up on slow cooker liners.  I’ve found a few coupons for those liners (they are expensive, let’s admit it).  The most important small appliance in my kitchen is my crock pot.  I use it quite often because it’s so simple to dump and cook.  That’s my style – dump and cook!  🙂

I was inspired by our trip to Louisburg, KS for the apple festival on September 10th to search for recipes that use apples.  We brought home a couple of jars of their wonderful sugar-free apple butter, but in my search today, look what I found!

CROCK POT APPLE BUTTER

Approximately 3 lb. apples ( make sure 1/2 are Granny Smith )
Gala , Fugi, Or Granny Smith
3 cups sugar (I will definitely use Splenda)
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
Dash of salt
3/4 cup water or fresh apple cider

Fill Crock-pot 3/4 full with peeled, cored and sliced apples. Add the remaining ingredients and stir until evenly mixed. Cover and cook on low setting overnight or until the butter is of a thick, spreadable consistency.

If apple butter has too much liquid, remove lid and cook on high until thickened. Stir often as butter thickens to prevent scorching.

Mash Apple Butter until chunky or smooth with hand-held masher or blender
Store in refrigerator for up to 6 weeks. Freeze for longer storage.
Put in jars with water bath processing also.

Found on Pinterest and Holly’s kitchen

I found a video tour from 2014:

https://youtu.be/khCFDem01YQ

I don’t think I’ve shared my photos from Louisburg with y’all.  If I have, just humor me and look at them again.  😉

APPLES-screenshot

top left:  I wish you could have heard that sign squeaking as it blew back and forth.  Squeak…  squeak…  sounds so much like autumn to me!

top right:  The business of this business is apple cider!  This is the barn where all the apple cider is made.  You can’t tell from this photo, but behind the barn there are apples floating around in water – they go up a conveyor belt and through all the different processes from there.  I wish you could have smelled the APPLE scent inside that barn – it’s better than any scentsy wax melt I’ve ever used!

bottom left:  Their own label of sparkling apple cider!  Ah – it is amazing!

bottom right:  Yep – it’s an apple cider donut!  Hey – I’m not gonna drive all those miles and not have one little apple cider donut.  That was lunch – and mmm…  it was yummilicious!  🙂

AUGUST 1-7 IS SIMPLIFY YOUR LIFE WEEK

TL AUGUST 1-7 IS SIMPLIFY YOUR LIFE WEEK

SIMPLIFY – To make simple or simpler: as a :  to reduce to basic essentials 

b :  to diminish in scope or complexity :  streamline <was urged to simplify management procedures>

c :  to make more intelligible :  clarify

A SIMPLE LIFE

It seems to me that it should be simple to simplify, ya know???  No matter how much effort we put into trying to simplify, it seems we work twice as hard to make it happen.  Now, does that make any sense to anyone?  No, I didn’t think so.  :-/
Well, here’s my take on simplicity.  I honestly believe that it begins within.  How high-maintenance are you, and what would you be willing to live without?  I’ve had many friends through the years and have traveled with a few.  I never let them know I was doing this, but I was secretly observing the luggage they carried.  You see, the things we travel with are the things we are not willing to part with.
The more stuff you are willing to live without, the more simple your life will be.  If you truly desire simplicity in your life, it’s necessary to let go of some non-essentials.  I know they seem like essentials right now, but stay with me.  This may make you re-think things.
For example, do you need a ton of makeup when you travel?  I’m not suggesting you go without makeup altogether (oh, heaven forbid) – but there are ways to travel with less.  I take one container of mineral make-up, a tube of mascara, a shadow, brow pencil and lip gloss.  Choose one color of lip gloss and plan your wardrobe around that theme color.  I usually choose red in the fall/winter months or dark pink in the spring/summer months.
I believe simplicity begins with the discarding of extras.  It’s about organization and pre-planning.  To make life easier, surround yourself with less.  It sounds like you would be denying yourself of things, but it is the most freeing experience to rid yourself of clutter and get organized.
Recently I went through my closet and took out pieces that I have not worn in the past year – for whatever reason.  If you have not worn a piece of clothing in the past year, you probably don’t need to keep it.
In the kitchen, organize with cook ahead cookbooks, or go online to find some great recipes.  Here are 20 of my favorites!  http://www.realsimple.com/food-recipes/recipe-collections-favorites/quick-easy/make-ahead-meals-0
If you cook on the weekend and freeze each serving, that frees up the weeknight to relax and enjoy your family.  Simple.
Teach kids to pitch in and help with things like laundry.  Even boys will need to know how to do that at some point when they get older, so you’d may as well get them involved now.  They will feel like they are helping out and it will take some of the load off you…  get it – load – laundry?  Never mind.
 When you make a conscious decision to make do with less, that is when simplicity will become a reality.  When you organize things a bit and enlist help from the rest of the family, it will pay off in the long run.
Give it a try…  and bask in simplicity!  🙂

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

TL A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART (26)

There are some changes taking place in Wichita.  Although embracing change with an open mind is a challenge for me, I’m opinionated and need to add my two cents worth (which in today’s economy is worth less than one cent).  :-/

11391391_10152921745272951_8840841037436998417_n
DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER NATIONAL AIRPORT Wichita, Kansas

Wichita has a new airport – the Dwight D. Eisenhower National Airport.  It looks quite modern from the outside and everyone talks about how fresh, clean and new it looks inside.  My husband and I decided to go check it out.

Before I go on, allow me a moment of nostalgia.  There’s not a ton of fun things to do in Wichita, so we used to go to the OLD airport and watch the planes take off and land.  Don’t feel sorry for me – that was fun!  We used to do that for a while, then eat at one of the restaurants and just walk around a bit.

PRE 9 11 MEMORIES

These days – in the post 9/11 world – it’s considered loitering.  Just hanging around an airport is not encouraged now for obvious reasons.  I get that – but part of me is sad.  Bit by bit our innocent activities are being taken from us.  Hey – when you’re low on cash, watching planes at the airport can be sort of fun!  There’s a people-watching opportunity you just can’t get anywhere else!  😉

There is absolutely no reason to darken the door of our new airport unless you are catching a flight.  There is one small “café” on the ground floor – as far as I could tell, they sell donuts and coffee – maybe hot dogs.  That’s about as good as it gets for those of us who are not being winged off.

If you are going to pick someone up at the airport, take my advice and brown bag it or eat something before you get to the airport.

All the other restaurants are beyond security!  Yeah – I’m just sad.  

Gone are the innocent days of eating a nice meal with friends or relatives then walking them to their gate to see them off.  Then once they’re on the plane, standing at the huge window to watch the plane take off (crying and waving – as though they can see you).  LOL!!!

It’s sentimental and silly – but I will miss it.

I guess the new plan will be to eat at a restaurant somewhere in the city before taking them to the airport.  Then we will say goodbye outside in the parking lot – and drive away, trusting that they will get through security and on the right flight at the right time.  It seems so cold compared to the way things used to be.

I don’t like it – but I don’t like the way 9/11 changed our country and our lives forever.  The new airport is efficient and discourages loitering – I get it – this is the way it has to be.  Just give me a minute to be nostalgic and sentimental – and yeah – silly.  I pray that God will bless our country – in this post 9/11 world.  We will never see the innocence we once knew again.

It’ll be okay – really it will.  🙂

COUNTRY INN BED & BREAKFAST DAY

TL 10-5 COUNTRY INN BED &amp; BREAKFAST DAY
http://youtu.be/4gKwCOOGlEo

Whether you are in Indiana or Maine, today is COUNTRY INN BED & BREAKFAST DAY!!!  Isn’t autumn the perfect time to stay at a bed & breakfast? We naturally enjoy a change of scenery and the rooms are usually very nice and smell amazing! The best part of the getaway is enjoying some wonderful meals and snacks. These great pumpkin cookies await you at White Cedar Inn in Maine. http://www.whitecedarinn.com/freeportmainetodo

Ingredients:
2 1/2 c flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
pinch salt
1 1/2 c sugar
1 stick butter
1 c canned pumpkin (15 oz can works well, use the remaining pumpkin as a snack)
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla

Grease baking sheets. Preheat oven to 350.

Directions:
Cream together sugar & butter in large mixing bowl. Mix in pumpkin, egg & vanilla. Add flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg & salt to pumpkin mixture, beat until well-mixed.

Using a cookie scoop, drop rounded mixture on baking sheets, leaving room for expansion. Bake for 15 minutes until edges are set.

Let cookies cool and then drizzle on glaze. I used a condiment squeeze bottle, but a plastic bag with the corner cut off works well, too.

Glaze:
2 c confectioner’s sugar
3 tbsp whole milk
1 tbsp melted butter
1 tsp vanilla

Mix all ingredients in a bowl. Transfer to ‘dispenser’ to glaze.

Keep in mind that 15 ozs of canned pumpkin is by weight. You’ll be using 1 cup by volume so there will not be that much left over. Mix it in with some Greek yogurt for a really creamy, seasonal snack.
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Well, I won’t get to stay at White Cedar Inn tonight, but maybe I’ll make a batch of these cookies! I’ll use Splenda instead of sugar, of course, and probably skip the glaze. They’ll still be good I’m sure! It is pumpkin season and we should celebrate! Wink! 😉