Saturday, June 25, 2011
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
.....while on vacation, other than staying at the pool and sleeping late. Robert has insisted that this be an "unplugged" vacation
♡ Scribbled by ~Isabel at 8:54 AM
Monday, June 20, 2011
Another Father's Day for you! This is your 3rd Father's Day as Emma's Dada and i know that you realize how much this child cherishes you. Both of us do, you know. You are the color to our world. You make us giggle, you chase us, you love us, and you take care of both of us. You are one of the things that Emma and i are most thankful for, besides ice cream, which explains your gift. :)
The plan for today was to let you sleep in, but it seems that Emma has other plans for you which include waking up very early. You know, because you make the best pancakes. And because it's Father's Day and we want to love on you as much as we can....
Love you so very much,
♡ Scribbled by ~Isabel at 9:11 AM
Sunday, June 19, 2011
....is something that my sister and i have talked about extensively since my mother passed away. We wanted to have, at the very least, a week together. I wanted "our spot" to be the beach and so the planning kinda started.
My sweet husband, picked up this chatter of talk between Claudine and i and ran with it to make it a reality.
And so, here we are. All of us. My family. My sister's family.
A wish come true.
Emma, i must say, is beyond having a wonderful, laughter-filled time with her cousins.
My husband, is doing a wonderful job of tolerating my sister and i, as we get goofy when we are together.
The only thing that Claudine and i both wish for?
For our Mama to be here, too....but in an odd way, she is. She is here in how we laugh together, how we poke at each other, how we cook together, and how we enjoy and love on each other.
I'm grateful....and very thankful for a husband who put this 'family vacation' together for us, knowing just how much it meant to me. He does stuff like this, and other 'man' stuff to show his love. You know, stuff like filling my gas tank every Sunday so i won't have to do it, making sure that i get my oil changed, and bringing home Cherry, Cherry Garcia for us to share occasionally. He puts up with many of my crazy ideas, doesn't laugh when i cook something that even he can't tell what it is, smiles at me when i come home with a $4 'treasure' (that really IS trash) from a garage sale to re-paint and best of all, loves me.
My sweet husband is a keeper...and Emma and i are blessed beyond measure that the three of us are a family. Robert is our glue and makes our lives the sweet life that it is...he brings color to me where there was none.
And of course, he does make the best pancakes ever....
♡ Scribbled by ~Isabel at 8:17 AM
Saturday, June 18, 2011
....to have a family vacation. My pics from my camera do not do this amazing place justice. The Sanctuary at Redfish is stunningly beautiful. Well kept grounds, clean, pretty and close to shopping
which you know was important to me! HA!. The rental is large enough for all seven (two master bedrooms, a room that can sleep four) of us and the pool was literally feet away from our door. The owners are fantastic; they checked on us to make sure that we were fine and that we had everything we needed. What a nice touch...
The coolest part to me is getting to the beach. After a very short walk to the dock of the lake, "Captain Bob" is there with his little pontoon boat to take you across the lake to the beach. There are also little paddle boats if you want to go on your own. Truly cool and lots of fun! Captain Bob is awesome and so very nice to the kids. Viktoria, John, Michael and Emma love him. Really, i wish i could have his job! Even putting out umbrellas and chairs looked like fun...
"Sanctuary at Redfish is truly a magnificent gem on the Emerald Coast. Here you will find the luxury and serenity of one of the best resorts in Florida. This sixty-four unit condominium resort is located on approximately fourteen acres on the east side of Big Redfish Lake in the Blue Mountain Beach area of South Walton County, Florida. The property slopes down to the coastal dune lake providing breathtaking lake and gulf views. Of the total approximately fourteen acres, Sanctuary at Redfish will only impact approximately six acres of the total property. The intention of the developers of Sanctuary at Redfish is to preserve as much of the natural vegetation as possible to create an environment of serenity and privacy unmatched along the coast. The property is just east of the intersection of Highway 83 and Scenic County Highway 30-A. The property is bordered on the west and south by Big Redfish Lake that empties out into the Gulf of Mexico and on the north by Scenic County Highway 30-A. There are sixty-four beautiful condominium homes."
While Robert is missing being closer to the beach, the rest of us, well, we are happy as clams!
♡ Scribbled by ~Isabel at 8:14 AM
Thursday, June 16, 2011
.....finally off on our vacation to Flordia! All of us, even Pachi, are so very excited to start our trip. Lets hope that this excitement last the entire car ride down and that there are no melt downs from
The beach, the beach.....
We're headed to the beach,
The beach, the beach.....
Wanna come along, along, along?
♡ Scribbled by ~Isabel at 8:42 AM
Wednesday, June 8, 2011
This year, i decided to pick the word "JOY" to define my year. It would be the one word that would set the tone for the start of the year. I'm still not sure why the word "JOY" kept nugging me, but it did, so i decided to go with it.
Sounds easy, doesn't it? Really, how hard can focusing on "JOY" be?
A lot harder than i ever thought, it seems.
Some parts of this year, well, have been easy to find "JOY" in. My daughter, my husband and simple things like, finding the joyful moments in daily life. Whether feeding the birds with my daughter, coloring and drawing with her to waiting up for my husband to share dinner, i've done a good job at finding "JOY".
In the other parts of my life, well, "JOY" seems to be, at the very least, hard to find. I've struggled a lot this year with my faith and the questions that seem to be never ending or have no answers. The words "faith" and "answers" sometimes don't go together too well, i'm finding out
EVERYTHING should have answers, no?
Apparently, the answer that to that question is "NO" and that i don't "deserve" answers to everything that happens. I don't understand why in the world God and i are not on the same page on this as it's not like i've repeatedly asked for answers in everything that happens. I have a feeling He's up there, chuckling at me as i 'ask nicely' for Him to please give me all of the answers that i want. He probably calls the angels over so they can all have a good chuckle.
Many of you know that i lost my Mom to cancer in 2007. Helplessness, anger, sadness, questions and even more anger still linger. I hate being this honest, but this feelings still linger. The "whys" of it, why her, why not someone else, why not later, why not fix it, why pray more are haunting some days. I just don't understand why a woman, a mother, a grandmother died of cancer. I don't understand why MY Mama died of cancer.
Fast forward to a college friend, Danielle. Cancer. She passes away after fighting for 2 years of breast cancer. Danielle never gets married, never has children, never gets to find her dream job....all of the things that she wants so desperately to do.
A long ago friend from work, Amy, finds out that her Dad has cancer. Thankfully, he is still fighting and seems to be doing well at the moment. My "JOY" is full of joy at this news!
Fast forward to sweet Ms. Jo. Again, cancer. How i've grown to hate this word. By this time, i know more about cancer and more about what works in how to take care of someone with cancer than i ever wanted to know. I've read all kinds of articles, different kinds of research, anything i can find. Ms. Jo has Ovarian Cancer and passes away after a little over a two year battle. A much loved wife, mother, Nana and friend is gone.
A few months after Ms. Jo passes away, a sweet friend at MOPS, Leslee, looses her much, much loved Mama to a short battle with cancer. Gone is her beloved mama, gone is a beloved wife, gone is a beloved grandma, gone is a beloved friend. Leslee's mama touched so many lives during her life....
And now, a favorite mentor at MOPS has shared with us recently that her pregnant daughter-in-law, Sally, has breast cancer. Ms. Gail asks for prayers. We pray...and pray hard. She is just like "us"; mothers. Sally has treatment while pregnant (none that will hurt the baby) and a little while after that, her son, Drew, is born. We rejoice....and are thrilled. Sally and her husband take their son home and they are loved on by family and friends.
Unexplained headaches show up for Sally...and they are bad headaches.
The cancer has spread.
She now has brain cancer and is undergoing more treatment.
I am heartbroken.
Why? Why? Why?
This stuff, this cancer stuff, has completely destroyed "JOY" in this part of my life. This stuff, this year, has taken me to the darkest of places. The dark places are sad, angry places, filled with feelings hopelessness and grief. The dark place is like a blanket that covers me. The dark follows me every where i go, never leaving, always there on the fringe of my life, constantly reminding me that i don't have answers, i don't know why, reminding me that life, even in it's best times, can be a scary place full of unknowns. The dark place wants me to hide and stay hidden because i realize that....
....other than pray and love on people, there is nothing that i can do about it.
Nothing. "JOY" is smashed into a million little pieces.
As my husband gently reminds me "It's life and it is what it is."
I don't like that answer because i want to do big things. I want to be able to wipe away cancer, to pray it away. I just don't want to send cards, pray constantly, make phone calls to see what i can do, bring dinners, or bake things. I want to do something that requires a SuperCancerKiller outfit: a cape, some tights with a great pair of boots, and the ability to fly and smash things.
I want to do BIG THINGS.
I want to get rid of the cancer. I want to smash it to pieces.
With my cool SuperCancerKiller boots.
None of these folks had habits that would warrant having cancer. All, went to doctors for check ups. All took pretty good care of themselves. All of these women (and one man!) are special women/men in the lives of others. They serve others, are active in their community and church families, are much loved, are much respected, have families that love them desperately.
I hate cancer.
I. HATE. CANCER.
With a passion.
I also want God to step in.
If He's not going to get rid of the cancer, than maybe, maybe explain "why". I don't even need an entire answer; maybe just a few hints as to "why". Or just ONE hint to "why".
And so, i continue to do the things that aren't "big" things. I pray desperate prayers. I send cards. I call. I bake. I am without my SuperCancerKiller outfit and i try to bring "JOY" to others as my heart fights to get out of my dark place.
I want this part of my "JOY" back...
♡ Scribbled by ~Isabel at 2:43 PM
Wednesday, June 1, 2011
Really, i am too much. Or i really am turning into my mother with all of this cooking and baking stuff. First the jam, now the Banana Bread....but i so love this recipe. It's one of my Mama's recipe but i have no idea where she got it from. It may be from a old church cookbook or a Lion's Club Cookbook; she loved getting and trying recipes from these kinda cookbooks. I'm grateful that i managed to get as many recipes from her as i could find. I love seeing her handwriting on a recipe where she changed, added or subtracted something to make it 'better'. I keep all of my recipes in clear sheet protectors, filed in a large black three-ringed binder
like a recipe nerd would do so i can keep track of them. Yeah, my Mama did the very same thing....not only do i come from a batch of Mother Earth types, i also apparently come from a long list of control freaks who must have everything in perfect order.
Since i had bananas that were spotting, I decided to bake Banana Bread this morning from my favorite recipe. Of course, i had to add certain things, like, chocolate and pecans
because it's so very healthy to add chocolate and pecans to everything and anything that i bake if i can get away with it. Honestly, though, it's just not "my" Banana Bread if it doesn't have chocolate and pecans. A piece of this bread with a large glass of milk, and i almost feel like i'm sitting in my Mama's kitchen again....
It's it amazing how a scent, a baked bread, or a song on the radio can transport you back? Just hearing a certain song can transport me back into a red Darango with the windows down, singing to a long-ago much loved, boyfriend, who i was certain would always be around. The scents of fresh bread, or Spanish cooking take me back to my Mama, watching, talking and giggling with her after a long school day; soft country music playing in the background. I guess that's nature's way of keeping treasured memories with us long after the time has moved on....
Back to the Banana Bread and it's recipe...
3 or 4 ripe bananas smashed (use four...trust me on this)
1 cup melted BUTTER (please use butter...)
1 cup sugar
1 egg beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla (or a touch more...)
1 teaspoon baking soda
pinch of salt
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
~Preheat oven to 350 degrees
~With wooden spoon, mix butter into mashed bananas in a large mixing bowl. Mix in sugar, egg and vanilla.
~Sprinkle the baking soda and salt over the mixture and mix in. Add flour last, mix til just mixed.
~Add in the chopped pecans (i just eye-ball the pecans amount) and chocolate (i use Baker's Semi-Sweet Chocolate and chop 2 squares up). Mix till just mixed and pour mixture into a buttered (i use PAM) 4x8 loaf pan and bake for 1 hour. Cool on rack.
Just a note about the butter: i used Publix store brand and skip the 'pinch of salt'.
I think that i will have Banana Bread with a large glass of milk for dinner, because, you know, it's just so healthy with all the bananas in it.
♡ Scribbled by ~Isabel at 2:26 PM