Taking Care of Myself

Lately I find myself having to walk away from the news,  turning off the TV. Newspapers pile up on the counter for a few days until I’m brave enough to sort through them. I have all but checked out of some social media sites because of the mean spirited political climate. Don’t get me wrong. I am interested in and want to be informed of what’s going on in the world, and I want to do my part to make the world a better place. But for the time being, in light of the violence, chaos, the constant turmoil and heartache in our world, I now need to take it all in small doses.

I firmly believe that despite the evil we know that exists, it is still an incredibly beautiful world filled with good hearted, thoughtful, kind souls everywhere. There is beauty beyond measure to behold. We don’t need to judge; we don’t need to agree on anything at all to be kind to one another. Let’s extend more compassion, kindness, forgiveness, and love. Let’s work on finding the best in everyone.

As for me, I’m taking care of myself: I plan to keep going on early morning walks with this sweet girl,IMG_0083I’ll keep hiking and  seeking solace in nature,IMG_8265I’ll spend all the time I can with these grand loves, IMG_0524IMG_0020IMG_0450I’ll keep writing, reading, listening to music, baking and trying new recipes, looking for good news, visiting with the wonderful friends and family members I’ve been blessed with, I’ll have morning coffee under the pergola. IMG_0488I’ll keep my eyes open for hearts,IMG_9247and I’ll be in the garden.IMG_0354IMG_0361IMG_0358IMG_0356IMG_0366IMG_0465IMG_0492IMG_0194I’ll be counting my blessings and praying for our world.

Peace to all.IMG_6973

“When the world wearies and society ceases to satisfy, there is always the garden.” ~Minnie Almoner

To Die For Blueberry Muffins

The blueberries were ripe and ready for picking at Once in a Blue Moon Blueberry Farm in El Dorado Hills, so off we went with these two loves to gather our loot for making blueberry muffins. IMG_9763

IMG_9815IMG_9816IMG_9759Ahhh, two buckets full; time to pay for them and make our way home for some baking.

To Die For Blueberry Muffins

These delicious muffins have a sugary-cinnamon crumb topping, which I’m a total sucker for!

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour

3/4 cup white sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/3 cup vegetable oil

1 egg

1/3 cup milk

1 cup fresh blueberries

Crumb Topping Ingredients:

1/2 cup white sugar

1/3 cup all purpose flour

1/4 cup butter, cubed

1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease muffin cups or line with muffin liners.
  2. Combine 1 1/2 cups flour, 3/4 cup sugar, salt, and baking powder. Place vegetable oil into a one cup measuring cup; add the egg and enough milk to fill the cup. Mix this with flour mixture. Fold in blueberries. Fill muffin cups right to the top, and sprinkle with crumb topping mixture.
  3. To make crumb topping: Mix together 1/2 cup sugar, 1/3 cup flour, 1/4 cup butter, and 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon. Mix with fork, and sprinkle over muffins before baking.
  4. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in preheated oven, or until done.

IMG_9766IMG_9767IMG_9768Now before we go any further, I must admit that there was the sweetest request to add sprinkles to the muffins. Sprinkles in blueberry muffins? Well, why not, indeed!IMG_9770IMG_9771IMG_9790Now we’re ready for our snack and a favorite book. Yum!IMG_9807

Cheers!

IMG_0016South Lake Tahoe, only an hours drive from our home, is our favorite place to get away to. The list of things to do in and around Tahoe is unending, and no matter what we choose to do while we’re here, time spent in this piece of heaven on earth is always special. Here, our worries are cleared away, and our souls are soothed and rejuvenated.

Nearly thirty four years ago we got married here. Through the years there have been countless family camping trips and days spent on the shores. Anniversaries and special occasions have been celebrated here. This is where we often come to hike in warmer months and snowshoe during winter months. The scenery is astoundingly gorgeous any time of the year.

A week ago we came across this dazzling field of lupine right at the shoreline in Tahoe City while exploring around the Gatekeeper’s Museum. You can walk right out into the middle of all this magic. We learned that when the lake recedes, lupines take over the flat moist area at the edge of the lake. The beauty of this field takes my breath away!
IMG_9970IMG_9974And here we are, best friends and loves of each other’s lives celebrating, once again, in Tahoe. Our special occasion on this day? The first time we met thirty six years ago, on a late June night. Me, just twenty, while he was twenty two.  How did we get so lucky to have found each other out of the vast amount of people in this big, wide world? Thirty six years of holding each others hands and hearts through all that life brings. All the while learning, compromising, growing, struggling, cherishing, forgiving, trusting, and encouraging. Most of all, loving.IMG_0010My heart overflows with gratitude and boundless love for this man. Here’s to many more years of celebrating life in Tahoe. Cheers!