Sunday, August 30, 2009

Word of Wisdom

This is me, ecstatic about having lost enough weight to wear this dress comfortably. When we bought the dress last year it was a bit snug and then got even snugger so I've never worn it. Today I'm pleased to say I can! Thanks to my Oregon friend Cathy, who has lost 50 + pounds and is looking great, I decided to try..... again to lose weight. I asked her what her trick was and she told me she started running, and she tried to follow the Word of Wisdom more correctly. In our belief system we have the Word of Wisdom as a guide to how to eat and what is harmful to consume. I know a lot of folks will say it's too restrictive, as in no caffeineated drinks, no alcohol and no smoking, but honestly, if you look at the health risks versus benefits of say drinking wine and such abstaining is a much better way to go. The Word of Wisdom talks about eating fruits, grains and herbs and eating meat sparingly. So along with the running and other exercise I've been doing I've cut way back on my meat consumption, substituting beans, lentils and so on for meat. I've also cut way back on sugar consumption, and one of the blessings of running or any vigorous exercise is that it has an affect on what you feel like eating and how much. I've lost 12 pounds and have 30 to go. It sure is a good feeling to be heading down. I'm not starving myself, I just eat less, and so if I want a cookie once in awhile I will have one, but I've really not wanted one. I have much more energy as well so I'm sticking with this plan. No drugs, just healthy foods and exercise. Now how easy is that?

Thursday, August 27, 2009


So my arms are loaded down with a box of Santas that need to be finished and my lap top as I try to make a mad dash out the door this morning and this is what greets me, EEEEkkk! I quickly back up, put down my load, and grab the broom so I can remove this industrious spider. He was at my eye level, and about an inch or so long. No, I didn't kill him, I just moved him to the garden where he belongs. There is a black widow that has set up shop in the top left corner of my porch though and my dear hubby is going to take care of that one when he gets home.
Spiders are one of Gods amazing creations as they can set up a web so quickly! I had just been in and out of the front door a few hours before. If you look at the amount of circles this spider had spun, and if you could have seen the real size of this web as it stretched across my front door blocking me from getting out you would have been flabbergasted! There was no way I could go under without crawling.
This spider photo should be sent to President Obama as an example of what one of God's creations can do when expected to take care of itself. We all have the capacity to do much, but in our culture today many have become so dependent on our government to take care of them that they have lost their ability to think and act for themselves. It would behoove the President and his cronnies to back off and let folks start doing for themselves. We should be expected to pay for our own healthcare in at least some way, unless we are truly indigent, which many folks on the public dole right now aren't.
So how did my scare with the spider become a rant about public assistance? It occured to me that if we all had the industry and drive one little spider has, this country would not be losing it's status as a great nation. Just something to think about...

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Berry Rhubarb Preserves

I know it's been forever since I posted here but so much has been going on that it would take forever to share all. You can stop by my Art blog as well though to see some of the latest happenings.
While still in Oregon I was lucky enough to be given lots of rhubarb and harvest enough raspberries from my patch to make some preserves. I had some blueberries on hand as well so I combined 4 cups each of the two types of berries along with 8 cups of chopped rhubarb. All those stringy looking pieces among the berries are actually grated lemon rind, about 2 tablespoons. I also added the juice of half the lemon.
Preserves are different than jam in that you only add half the amount of sugar per cup of fruit. So I added 8 cups of sugar and then brought the mixture to a boil, stirring frequently. Be sure to put this in a large deep pot as the mixture does bubble and splash so you can be burned. I lowered the temp to allow the mixture to boil slowly, stirring frequently to make sure it doesn't scorch. After the mixture has thickened a bit, about 30 minutes of cooking I ladle it into sterilized jars, clean the rims, add the lids and and rings and tighten them down. I water bath process for about 10 minutes. Your yield will depend on the amount of fruit you use so I always have extra jars sterilized just in case. This is a good way to combine end of season fruits, make your sugar go farther, and create a delicious topping for toast, pancakes or waffles, or ice cream.