Our dog Dibley loves his favorite human so much.
The boys have grown up together. They have played together and had the occasional fight too.
There is no place Dibley likes more than snuggled beside Aaron especially when he has taken off his socks.
Aaron’s feet are a source of delight and are licked like an ice-cream.
Socks are also considered a treat but only if they have been worn by a brother.
This show of affection and attachment might seem strange.
Just imagine though that you’re a caveman home from the hunt with raw and sore feet. Wouldn’t this be such a good reason to let that baby wolf come close?
Blessing # 112 – Observing Companionship
My husband Krishna is a great cook.
Having grown up vegetarian he is particularly gifted when it comes to spicing up the simplest things and transforming them into a dream dish.
He got a lot of practice with potatoes when my Dad would visit us because, as any good Irishman will tell you no meal is complete without a spud! I’m partial to one myself!!!!
So it was with relish that I looked forward to the chutney he made with some of the mint and chillies we have grown.
It was powerful and delicious.
Just a spoonful in any dish will enliven us, warm our senses in the middle of winter and remind us of the heat and heart of summer.
Blessing # 111– Spice In Life
The sky at sunset can be very special here at this time of year. The colors are blazing like the sky is on fire.
When this happens the filing cupboard in my head always sorts and pulls out the same references.
First up is Scarlet O’Hara and the posters of Gone With The Wind. Wonder did a sunset inspire Margaret Mitchell when she wrote the book?
Next up is The TYGER by William Blake. Those burning eyes that we can only dream of meeting in the forest at night.
Finally comes Walter Chalmers Smith’s hymn Immortal Invisible God Only Wise.
This is a favorite we often sing at church and coincidentally, after a spectacular sunset this Saturday, we did so this Sunday.
The reason for this connection in my mind is the ending that most of us know from the hymnal that is
However, thanks to a little digging into Wikipedia to find these lyrics to copy and paste I unveiled for myself something I had never known. The ending verses as written were in fact.
Blessing #110 – The Splendor of Light
After the heat of the past few days the promise of a cool down was welcomed here in Ohio.
With this cold front came some very severe storms. The rain was coming sideways through our screened porch and our poor dog Dibley was panicking as always.
We lost power too so everything became still.
No TV, no video games, no hum of the air conditioner that was in the background all summer. No need to water plants for days ahead. Best of all breakfast in the evening with a glass of bubbles beside and a game of UNO.
Time also though to think of all those in Carolina, Hong Kong and the Philippines who have seen such devastation in the past weeks and to be grateful that our storm passed quickly and power’s restored.
Blessing # 109 – Cards by Candlelight
Each summer I have a reading bonanza. This happens mostly at our lovely town of Powell pool.
This summer’s favorite was Fried Green Tomatoes. The Mayor of Casterbridge came a close second.
Certain things are important in my book choice. One is that it is light in weight so paperbacks are a must.
This makes the hold easier and, when they inevitably get wet they dry out faster. By the story’s end my books are in a sorry state. They may even fall apart if they’re on the chunky side.
There also needs to be a flow that meets my needs. Chapters can’t be too long. They must allow for a read-a –bit–dip-a-bit rhythm at the pool, a decent soak in the bath without going too wrinkly or just sufficient distraction to nod off.
Krishna, my husband, who always has a book on the go, is no fan of paperbacks he only likes hardcovers.
He treats his books gently and never bends the spine. In the books he chooses chapters can be volumes. He doesn’t lose the plot
Needless to say Krishna doesn’t read anywhere close to pools or baths or lying in bed like me. He is a read on the sofa sitting up straight attentive type person.
We have nothing in common either when it comes to tastes. Krishna reads biographies, thrillers or political drama. I’m totally a love story type.
There is something though that unites us in our literature. Neither of us have taken to ebooks. This is unfortunate in one regard because our home is overrun with books. They are stacked double on walls of shelves and can also be found where clothes should be hung. They mingle with dishes in other cabinets and even make appearances in the garage!
We just seem to keep on gathering but rarely letting go of this endless source of pleasure. Books are bound to us for ever and keep our hearts warm!!!!
Blessing # 108 – Literary Inspiration and Insulation
Well summer is officially over and the swimming pools have already been closed for a few weeks.
That doesn’t mean it has cooled down though. Today it is a toasty 87F (30C) so a good day to grab some last minute Vitamin D.
We are far from the sea here in Ohio but we have some lovely spots close by including Delaware Lake that has a nice little beach.
It may be just me with a book and the birds but it’s a treat.
Blessing # 107 – Lazy Indian Summer Day
We adopted Aaron when he was 28 months old. All we know about his background is that he was born on December 16, 2000 in Shanghai.
We very much want to help Aaron find out more about his birth family although we know this will be a big challenge.
As a first step Aaron did a DNA assessment in 2017 using 23andMe
This has given some very good information on genetic traits that could be helpful for him to know in future.
We get regular updates from 23andMe each time there is a new discovery. For example we got an update recently to say Aaron is likely to have severe reaction to mosquitoes and also funny enough have a fear of heights. Whoever would have imagined there is a gene that can predict this but guess what it is TRUE.
All this to say that we trust 23andMe and their work. So yesterday when we got a message saying some new family links had been uncovered we were excited.
We have found the closest link yet a person with 37% match on Aarons DNA. That would be like a third cousin.
Thanks to 23&Me we were able to message this person and she has already replied. She is living in the USA but her parents both were born in China.
Isn’t this exciting?
Blessing # 106 – Applied Science
A few days ago a Buddy posted about the importance of using the good things we have rather than saving them for special occasions.
The point was clear. Each day is special!!!
Our family, like most, have glassware and china that gets aired only at Thanksgiving, Christmas or dinner parties.
We have found that as an item in a set is broken the likelihood of use of the remainder increases exponentially. The set is no longer perfect so might as well be used.
Such was the case with a set of fine glasses that Krishna bought before we met. They were really top class as he had nothing better to spend his cash on in those days.
There were glasses for each wine type and for water and liqueur too. So quite an extensive and exquisite collection.
The glasses travelled the world with us. The most used being the large reds.
Over the years the numbers diminished apart from the liqueur set that remains complete. Who drinks liqueur?
The red numbers fell until just one remained. This last soldier became my glass from which an evening tipple was taken. Until that is it bit the dust this weekend.
The long stem broke in two but the glass itself stayed in one piece.
Many people enjoyed these fine glasses and of course what was in them. They weren’t ornaments or dust collectors but they were special.
If they could speak they would tell many tales and no doubt the red would tell the liqueur how good it feels to be valued most!!!
Blessing # 105 – Being of Use
Krishna cooks with great finesse. He is a master of the spice blend as many know and appreciate.
His skills have only rubbed off a little on me as I haven’t the patience needed to perfect the art.
One thing that’s very therapeutic for me though is chopping. This was generally my Sunday afternoon exercise but now it can happen anytime.
This afternoon we are going to Yutzy’s farm market with Aaron as he loves the Amish goodies so this morning a get rid of all remaining veggies chopping session took place.
This reminded me of my Dad. On the very rare occasions when Mother was away from home his attitude to cooking was never to measure or follow a recipe but to take what came first to hand and to BUNG IT IN.
We had some experiences and delights such as fried apples and bacon but we had fun. We always had a spud or two too!!
Who knows what today’s dinner will be like, for the minute we’ll let it stew!
Blessing # 104 – Culinary Surprises
Our home is in a northern suburb of Columbus. If we head just a few miles out we are in the country.
Short cuts, to avoid traffic lights and highway traffic, take us onto roads that cut straight through the farms and that are always a joy.
The fields are massive and flat compared to the rolling hills of Ireland but they have their own beauty at each season.
Right now the soybeans are ready for harvest and their color gives the most fabulous contrast to the blue sky.
Yesterday’s color was quite impressive and the day was very hot.
For sure this photo doesn’t do justice to the scene but it reminded me of John Keat’s “To Autumn” that many of us leaned by heart in our English classes.
Little did we appreciate the value of those lessons and that they would be seeds we would harvest for a lifetime.
Blessing # 103 – Fruitfulness