BOOM – Lent 35

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My Christmas cactus is refusing to give up its season but Spring is in full bloom in Northern Ireland. Carol sent me some beautiful pics yesterday of flowers in her garden.


There are primula and daisies and a magnificent camellia too. The colors are fabulous and so bright.


We’re a few weeks behind here in Ohio but the daffodils are out and the hyacinths too. Even the herbs have decided to say “we’re back

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This year one variety of daffodil we have looks a bit like an orchid. It’s colors remind me of primroses.

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When we were young girls Carol’s Mum and Dad had a car mine didn’t. During the Easter holidays they’d take us from the heart of the city where we lived into the country. We’d be let loose to run around and often went hunting for primroses in the hedgerows.

We’d make little posies of these pretty flowers and put them into a button hole or if we found enough brought home as tiny bouquets that we put in a milk bottle.

In recent years with so many options for amusement I’m not sure if kids still do such things maybe this year they will!

Blessing # 654 – Primary Colors

BOOM – Lent 34

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Today we had to complete the census. As we’ve moved around so much we’ve only ever done this once before as a married couple and that was in 2000.

A lot of water has passed under the bridge since then but some things never change. Scooby and I experienced one of these constants today: the return of the swallows!

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We went up to the park for our walk and while we stopped to watch the geese and ducks courting two swallows flew past.

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It’s hard to catch them in a photo as they move so fast but we got one to warm your heart!

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Seeing them always reminds me of my Dad who took great joy in their arrival each year in Ireland and also of Thomas Hardy’s short poem Weathers.

This little park is just starting to come alive again. It was dull today but in a few weeks they’ll be wild flowers, ducklings and goslings a go go and each day will bring new signs of spring and hope.

Blessing # 653 – Promises Kept

BOOM – Lent 33

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Today is National Doctors Appreciation Day. In this time of ICU intensity and social distancing never has this been more relevant

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As she does every day at two pm Dr Amy Acton the Head of the Ohio Department of Health stood beside our Governor to update us on the current status of the virus’s progression in our state.

Over the past month Dr Acton has become a superhero for us all. She works day and night to plan and strategize on our behalf to flatten the curve for Ohio. It would seem all her efforts are paying off.

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She has a huge following with a Facebook fan club that grows by the minute. When I joined on Saturday there were 79000 members today there are 91000!

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The site is full of photos and videos reinforcing the messages she sends to us all. Many of these come from little kids pretending to be her. There are street art renditions and even curve flattening cookies 

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What an inspiration and what confidence this wonderful women instills. We trust her words and when she says I am not afraid I am determined we believe her!

Blessing # 652 – White Coat Hero’s

BOOM – Lent 32

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Scooby had a hot date with one of his girlfriends this morning at 10:00. We walked with her parents for an hour and a half.

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While we were out Krishna decided he’d do some cooking. Those of you who know his culinary skills will be jealous.

There was little left in the fridge so he made do with what was on the shelf. Fear not! The man can take something as simple as a can of salmon and transform it into a glory Gordon Ramsay would be proud of.

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With Aaron leaving for work at 3:30 he cooked two up for him just now. It’s like having a smelly preview of what awaits.

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He owes me though! He ran out of whiskey last night so I made a run to the store to replenish his stock. Think there is almost as much alcohol on the outside of that bottle as there is inside after all the post purchase sterilization.

You never can be too careful though just can’t take a risk with the maestro!

Blessing # 651 – Give and Take

BOOM – Lent 32

My sweet friend Mary is a great bird lover. She finds and regularly post amazing photos of feathered friends and this morning’s was no exception, Lappet Faced Vultures!

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They look so funny and immediately made me think of that 1970s feel good song by Rufus Thomas The Funky Chicken.

Of course it stuck in my head and I had to look it up and do a little jig along. Maybe something to teach the kids and get the groove going!

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In the UK a comedy trio called The Goodies took this song and made it their own. It became the Funky Gibbon. Look that one up if you want something even sillier.

It is just amazing how a song like this can stick. Today a recent one The Baby Shark is being put to good use to teach little kids about hand washing.


Everything becomes so much easier if you make it fun! Oh yeh Mary you got it!

Blessing # 650 – Cheery Tunes

BOOM – Lent 31

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Many people seem to be baking these days. Probably those lovely smells help the mood and for sure beating up a batter or banging up a dough gets rid of tension.

With Aaron working at Panera we have absolutely no need for bread or any tempting baked goods but the need to knead was great.

Dumpling Day! 
If you have kids at home these are something you could do together. Even our Aaron was induced to help me.

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Making the dough is just flour and water and lots of stress relief. Hit it hard! Beat the daylights out of it!
When it’s sticking together let it rest for a couple of hours.

The filling can be sausage you’ve bought or you can make something yourself like we did. We tossed some onion, cabbage, celery, chili and leftover ham into a blender. When it looks all mushy and revolting put it in the fridge and have a rest.


After a couple of hours get your dough out and thump it again. Now have fun. Roll it and cut it like your making cookies. This is easy to work and the kids will have a ball. Just as good as play dough.

The really good and most messy bit comes next. You gotta stuff those little circles and stick them together.

Once you have a good pile ready heat some oil in the pan and fry them till they start to stick.

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If they don’t work you’ve lost nothing more than a little of that spare time and a few cups of flour!

If they do work you’ll have had some fun and some yum too!

Blessing # 649 – Kneading Comfort

BOOM – Lent 30

Those who are working so hard on our behalf on the front lines must be feeling exhausted. Those of us sitting at home have probably more energy than we’ve had in years. Never in the time we’ve lived here have we seen so many people out walking, running and cycling. Everyone is very friendly with a smile and greeting and even a chat but all at safe distance.


We live close to a large Dam called Alum Creek that has a lovely beach so Scooby got lucky getting his first trip there with Aaron and me yesterday. He enjoyed it so much Aaron took him back today.

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While they were away Krishna did bills and I watched a great movie called The Green Book. It won the best picture Oscar a few years ago and introduced me to a genius I’d never heard of Don Shirley. Bottom line if you haven’t seen it watch this movie it’s wonderful.

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To keep the old fingers busy while watching I decided to crochet using all my old scraps of wool.

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I wasn’t sure what I’d produce as it’s hard to say with scraps how far they’ll go. Turned out I’d enough for a hat.

It is hardly an Easter bonnet, more like a tea cosy really, but it’s a colorful way to  keep ears warm.

Reminds me too of something our famous Belfast Pantomime Dame Ms May McFetteridge might wear!

Blessing # 648 – Stars of Stage & Screen

BOOM – Lent 29

It’s not a happy time but that doesn’t mean we can’t have a giggle. There have been some cracker jokes on social media in the past few days. So since it woeful Wednesday thought you’d appreciate one or two.

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There have been many comments about home schooling. Hats off to those who’re doing it. We’re just so glad that Aaron is past that stage where we would even attempt it. There would for sure have been a major police incident!

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Krishna and I have had a year to get used to dancing around each other at home all day. It’s more tense now because of the lack of diversions just can’t imagine though if we’d been thrown into this without some rehearsals!

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The surge in sales of the triple ply soft on the bum has been the stuff of dreams. As the stock market slumps bet you wish you had shares in paper products! Maybe it’s used to play pass the parcel!

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What to do if you feel like an outing well of course there’s hide and seek around the homestead and if it’s party time well it’s gotta be a certain beer!

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When it’s all said and done though it’s a year no one is likely to forget.

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Blessing
# 647 – Making Light

BOOM – Lent 28

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This morning I was filing my nails! The file I was using was one my bestie Lorraine had given me in my Christmas stocking.

This got me thinking of all the things around that I see everyday that trigger a thought about the bestie who gifted it.

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There’s a lovely labrador that hangs on a Chinese cabinet that Carol gave when Darcy was alive so it’s at least twelve years old.

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Next to the cabinet sits a chair with a cushion Laura gave me this past Christmas. It’s a hand painted scene of Ireland. Laura said it reminded her of our trip together there ten years ago!

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Into the bedroom and there’s a candle from Dolores that I’ve never lit because it smells so good!

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On the little chest in the bathroom where earrings live are two little ducks from Phyllis.

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Inside the chest are gifts from Carol, Lorraine, Tjin and Flora that are all worn regularly.

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Onto the kitchen and into the cupboard where we get our cereal bowl each morning we find the baking kit from Patricia with cookie cutters for our Petit Biscuits de Noel!  

All these are seen daily. Reminders of loved ones. They may not be by our side but they are always present in our hearts.

Blessing # 646 – Looking at Love

BOOM – Lent 27

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With the start of a new week many are working from home. Have you been hanging around in sloppy clothes this weekend like me? When you’re going no where there’s no incentive to glam up.

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This morning with the gloom outside the only thing to do was jazz life up with some of the brightest and colorful clothes.


Our Scooby needs a boost too. He’s looking sharp with his new hairdo but he’s not himself. He seems a bit down since his change of look. Krishna reckons it’s nothing to do with his haircut it’s that he senses our mood and that things aren’t normal.

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All the walking may also be taking its toll. These past few days he’s sleeping a lot more too.

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Seems he’s not alone my friend Shinjie’s dog is feeling it too.

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She shared this photo with me this morning and it made me laugh. Hope these fur babies adventures bring a little smile to your faces too!

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This little funny Patricia sent says it so well our puppies are even more precious than ever. 

Blessing # 645 – Dog Days