I’ve Been Nominated for the Versatile Blogger Award

Versatile Blogger Award

I’m so excited!!  I’ve been nominated for The Versatile Blogger award.  So I don’t win a trip to any exotic location or even win some kind of cool prize, but what I do get is the respect and accolades from my fellow bloggers! And the opportunity to let you know that!

The rules for receiving the Versatile Blogger Award are:
Thank the person who nominated me and link back to them in my post.  So thank you ever so much whenquiet!  I love her stuff; she is such a unique personality.

Share 7 things about me:  [1]  I love to give gifts (wish I had lots of money and time).  [2]  My middle name was misspelled on my birth certificate, so I have been assuming an alias all my life.   [3]  I am in the 68% of women who say they weigh less than they really do on their driver’s license (but that is my goal weight).  [4]  There are several secrets I will take to my grave.  [5]  My life has been one long exercise in procrastination and consternation (one exacerbates the other).  [6]  Gee whiz, there’s not that much to share that I haven’t already told everyone.  At least not that I can tell on a public forum… or willing to tell on a public forum.  Oh, here’s one.  I am not an exhibitionist, therefore, no public forum sharing of non-public thoughts or events.  [7]  I have a dream, a hope, a goal of someday attaining peace.

Pass the award on to 15 more bloggers.  This is easy.  There are just so many good blog sites out there.  Some are over on the widget (right-hand side) of this blog.  And you will see some of the others today.

Click on the pictures or site title, and you will be directed to their web site.

The Pioneer Woman


Pink Martinis and Pearls

Chronicles of a Rocket Surgeon

Elise Bauer Hello and thank you for stopping by Simply Recipes, our family’s food blog, or personal website. Here you’ll find hundreds of recipes for the home cook, all tested by me,Elise Bauer, my family or friends.


Eat, Live, Run

And last but not least:  Tell the nominees, those I am nominating, that I have done so.

Enjoy these sites!!


Today is January 19.  That same day in 1970 a baby boy was born.  And today he would have been 42 years old.  Here’s to remembering a great guy!

Truly a man among men!

All these photos came out of scrapbooks I had made several years ago.  Hope the backgrounds and the extra feet, etc., don’t distract.

We had a great time that year.

I love this picture. Look at those beautiful eyes!!

JJ and Daren

I miss you.

ah, that sweet smile


SUCH a stinker!!

And what more can I say?

My Castle

a section of the backyard -- just needs a little tweaking this fall

My home is my sanctuary, my castle.  It is also sometimes a great source of financial drain and worry.  The memories that fill it are good ones and sad ones.  The people who have lived here before me, who frequented this home, left good vibes; they were good people.  And now, I am the caretaker.

happy faces, sad faces, old faces, new faces

My sunflowers remind me of my family and my friends: those standing tall in the glory of their youth; those whose personalities shine so brightly they bring light to everyone around them; those with sturdy stalks from working hard and holding up their family; those who prefer to stay within the confines of their home, their own castle; those who are beginning to fade, get a little droopy (why you lookin’ at me?); those who hang their heads in defeat, depression, shame, fatigue; those who laugh and hold their heads high, delighting in their good fortune and joy; those with new little faces, budding out each week, month, and finally into the years; those who have grown old and withered, dying as their family and friends stand by their side.

from the barn to the backyard

They lean on each other, sometimes faces turned as though in conversation.  They have different centers, different hues: different personalities, different abilities.

I love my sunflowers and grow them every year.  They give me comfort and peace and enjoyment.  They are a part of me and a part of my home.

looking to the sun

Friends are the sunshine of life.  John Hay

Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see the shadow.  Helen Keller

Lifting as they climb, onward and upward they go, struggling and striving and hoping that the buds and blossoms of their desires may burst into glorious fruition ere long.  Mary Church Terrell

Eden is that old-fashioned house we dwell in every day without suspecting our abode until we drive away.  Emily Dickinson

Happiness is a Swedish sunset; it is there for all, but most of us look the other way and lose it.  Mark Twain

I reach for the Son that He may shine brightly within my heart and soul.  Brenda Byassee






A Quinkle Lift Isn’t The Answer

Sometimes we just can’t explain what it is that makes us do the things we do.


For instance, why have I always loved to read, even encyclopedias? And what makes me procrastinate when I hate doing it? From where does this chameleonism of mine come or my inability to make a decision? Why have I saved magazine recipes for years… and years… and years?

As I look around at family and friends, I wonder about their quinkles as well.  You know, those quirky things that make wrinkles in your personality that you would otherwise not have if it weren’t for the quirks, those things that keep you from being the terrific person you truly are. If only we could have a quinkle lift, then our lives would be made right and whole, and joy and tranquility would abound. A little smoothing out of those deep quinkles that affect our day-to-day progress, such as getting to work on time.

personality colors

But then… what about all that color in our personalities?

Those quinkles are what makes a person vivid, gives depth to our intrinsic differences, stretches our beliefs and endurance capacities.

In my family alone we have a cat quinkle, a fat quinkle, a run-around-in-circles quinkle; a regret quinkle, a forget quinkle, and a can-I-ever-get-it-right quinkle; a drama quinkle, a dilemna quinkle, and a let’s-get-‘er-done-right-now quinkle. As I think on it, we are so quinkled!

drama quinkle

So what kind of quinkles do you and your family have?

Thin-And-Fine Is Fine With Me

My niece, Jill, is hysterically witty and  fun and unique.  She just attracts smileys, fun things out of nowhere.  Sometimes I  sit and reminisce about her and her stories and laugh out loud (LOL) all by myself.

Snow White

She has this little voice, this lilting, melodic, soprano sound —  or maybe it’s just high and squeaky — although after two children and the endless amount of speaking it takes to get them to put their coats away (not counting toys, clothes, food, etc.), the tiny little voice may have deepened.   But the little girl with her Mommy in the department store where Jill worked at the time was enthralled with her… and her voice.  She stood and stared for a long time, listening as Jill talked to the customers, and finally asked, “Are you Snow White?”


Then there was the co-worker that kept walking by Jill’s desk calling her a “hoe.”  So one day, when Jill had had enough, the girl came by, stood at Jill’s desk, and said, “Hoe.”  Jill looked her in the eye as she finally retorted, “Shovel.”

She also got the Meme hair:  thin and fine.  My mother always complained about her hair and always described it as thin and fine.  When Mom would call the house, my husband would say, “Thin-and-fine’s on the phone.”  So now, with Meme gone, Jill is Thin-And-Fine.

losing it

Or at least she was until the chemo took it, left her head barren and void of any hair at all.  But it couldn’t get her spirit.  Nor could the radiation she had to endure for weeks.  The pain that comes with all the “cure” couldn’t flip her unflappable determination to be well and “kick cancer’s ass” as the flair buttons proclaim.

Last time I talked to her on the phone, she still sounded like Snow White to me, and her facebook page is filled with one-worder witticisms.  Her hair is beginning to grow back, and I can’t wait to see the outcome of the outgrowth!

breast cancer ribbon

http://ww5.komen.org/ (if it doesn’t link, just copy and paste)

flair button

The Queen of The Clan

My sis, Darla, is now the matriarch of our collective family, as well as her own.  We call her “The Queen,”  “Queenie,” and a few other things we try not to let her hear.  We’ve gotten her queen ornaments, queen jewelry, even tried to get her to put Queenie on her license plates.  Occasionally, she balks at being called The Queen, but I think she secretly tries on homemade crowns when she’s alone… and throws robes across her shoulders.   I’ve not personally seen this, mind you, but she carries herself too regally not to practice.


The Queen Mother, Jack, Queen Mother-In-Training

Before Mom passed away, Dar had been taking control from our mother for several years.  First came moving the holiday gatherings to my sister’s  house because Mom was too frail to have everybody at her house.  Okay.  That made sense.  Then came deciding when we were all going to meet and who was bringing what.  Okay.  That made sense… it was at her house.  Then came the day she started scolding me for something — I’m sure I wasn’t doing anything at all wrong whatsoever and didn’t need a good scolding for whatever I wasn’t doing wrong — and that’s when I knew.

all innocence

The baby of the family had usurped the rightful matriarch heirs (my older sister and myself) (Ben doesn’t count; he’s a guy and has no say-so anyway) and had thrust the Momma Crown right on her own head!  Her regal tone of voice and regal words of wisdom had lulled us into a state of acceptance without our even realizing it.  We had acceded her rise to the Momma Throne as surely as if we had placed her there ourselves.

But what if we really had placed her there ourselves?  Wasn’t she the one who always knew how to get a job for one of us in need?  Weren’t her words those that were just perfect for comforting, encouraging, advising, even scolding?  Was it not she that was always right there when any of us needed something: a hug, a caretaker, an organizer, a cleaning lady, a mover, a prayer warrior, a lighthouse in all our storms?

And weren’t we the ones that always sought her first?  Her wisdom for our worries; her heart for our concerns; her strong back for our labors; her love for our never-ending petitions.

Yes.  The Queen wears her title well.  Little did she know, we’ve had her in training for decades now.