Into the Woods

Into the Woods in our Backyard June 25, 2017 Mars, PA

Into the Woods in our Backyard June 25, 2017 Mars, PA


“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.”

― Henry David Thoreau, Walden

Yesterday was one of those
most amazingly glorious
Summer Sundays.

No agenda,
bright sunshine,
cool breeze.

I woke early,
sipped my coffee on the deck
with the birds and the rising sun.

I made old-fashioned macaroni salad
to chill and be just right
to accompany grilled burgers for dinner.

I took my watercolors
out onto the patio,
and I painted for hours.

And when it was time to move a bit,
Charlie and I headed to the woods
in our backyard.

We hiked until we got lost,
and then we found our way out through a neighbor’s backyard
on an intersecting street to ours.

It was a sauntering walk
with stops to breathe it all in, smell the fresh air,
and commune with nature.

The woods are a great place
to learn how truly small you
and your problems really are.

It’s a place to be small,
but come out feeling bigger
and better and complete.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

*Transient

A Fawn at Dawn

A Fawn at Dawn Watercolor 6x10 140lb Saunders Cold Press

A Fawn at Dawn Watercolor 6×10 140lb Saunders Cold Press

A fawn
I named John
was on the lawn
at dawn.

I yawned,
turned the lights on,
and like a phenomenon,
he was gone.

The beauty of nature
and new life
never ceases to
amaze me
no matter how often
I witness it.

Morning memories…
Cherishing the moments…
at life in between.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Just a quick little fun splashing some paint on Saturday afternoon in the sunshine after awaking that morning to the sight of two fawns on our front lawn.

Sometimes I Wonder

Goldfinch and Grosbeak at the feeder - Mars, PA - June, 2017

Goldfinch and Grosbeak at the feeder – Mars, PA – June, 2017

Sometimes
I wonder
how you put up
with me.
Then I remember,
oh I put up with you.
So we’re even.

Author unknown

Lovingly dedicated to a guy I call “Merv.”
He calls me “Gert.”
I put up with him.

He puts up with me.
Let’s do it until eternity. ❤

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

A Duck Named Chuck

Chuck the Duck Watercolor 8x10 140lb Fabriano Cold Press

Chuck the Duck Watercolor 8×10 140lb Fabriano Cold Press

 

There once was a duck
named Chuck
who never really had much luck.

When a tempestuous storm struck,
he was stripped of his cluck.

It really did suck,
and he felt like a schmuck.

But not one to pass the buck,
he simply smiled and said,
“Oh F……..antastic!”

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Just a little fun with negative watercolor painting and silly rhyming!

Red Quinoa Salad with Avocado, Black Beans & Corn

Red Quinoa Salad with Avocado, Black Beans, and Corn.

I love legumes, and I am really growing to love quinoa.  I recently tried this new salad for dinner that was so so delicious, filling, and healthy.

A one-cup serving of quinoa is packed with 9g proteins, 5g fiber, and 20g carbohydrate. Red quinoa is also rich in magnesium, manganese, copper, iron and phosphorous. It contains high quantities of lysine, an essential amino acid.

Legumes like black beans and edamame are also high in protein and fiber, and avocado is extremely nutrient dense.

To eat something that is so easy, so healthy, so pretty, and so delicious is a win-win in my book!

Are you a legume lover?  Quinoa connoisseur?  I’d love to hear your favorite ways to enjoy!

Red Quinoa Salad with Avocado, Black Beans & Corn

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Red Quinoa, cooked in broth and cooled
  • 1 avocado, sliced
  • 1 15-oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup corn, frozen, roasted, or fresh off cob
  • 1/4 cup Sweet Vidalia or Green Onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup edamame (optional)
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • Cilantro, fresh chopped, to taste
  • 1 tsp. Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp. Olive Oil
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Cherry tomato (optional) for garnish

Directions

Cook quinoa, and set aside to cool.

Toss vegetables together gently.  Drizzle with lime juice, vinegar and oil.  Season with salt, pepper and cilantro.  Gently toss.

Spoon quinoa onto plate.  Top with a generous scoop of vegetable salad.  Garnish, as desired, with quartered cherry tomato.

Enjoy!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

 

How do you say “Thank You?”

Crooked Creek, Ford City, PA - June, 2017

Crooked Creek, Ford City, PA – June, 2017

How do you say “Thank You”
for sunshine or health…
for clear days or gentle rains…
for happiness, joy or love?

You say it by sharing
what you have.
You say it by making
the world a better place in which to live.

-Thomas D. Willhite

How do YOU say “Thank You?”

I say it by trying to share something small every day
in this tiny little platform that is mine
to give to the world
a little bit of happiness…
a little bit of joy…
a little bit of love.

My “Thank You” might be
a photograph,
or a painting,
or a craft or DIY idea.

It might be a favorite cherished
or newly discovered recipe.
It might be a verse
or a quote or a story.

But it is my “Thank You”
for sunshine and health…
for clear days and gentle rains…
for happiness, joy, and love.

It is my gift.
It is my little life.
It is my creative journey…
at life in between.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

*Focus

Fresh Red Raspberry & Blueberry Pie

Fresh Red Raspberry & Blueberry Pie.

Are you looking for an amazing fruit pie that is tart and sweet and bursting full of fresh fruits of the season?

I haven’t baked a pie in a while, so I thought it was high time I treated hubby to something he would love being that it is Father’s Day weekend and all.

He would choose pie over cake or cookies approximately 99.5 times out of 100 – conservatively speaking.

I had some fresh red raspberries and some fresh blueberries in the fridge, but not enough of either to make a whole pie, so I decided to try combining the two into one pie.

I researched some recipes and then decided to combine things I liked about different ones into my own creation – including using tapioca instead of cornstarch as the thickening agent for this pie.  Grandma always used tapioca in her berry pies, so there is no other way in my book!

This pie turned out perfectly thickened and so full of fresh berry flavors.  It was a complete hit with Hubby – especially when topped with a melting scoop of vanilla bean ice cream.

If you are looking for a new twist on berry pie, I hope you’ll give this recipe a try!

Fresh Red Raspberry & Blueberry Pie

Ingredients:

  • Double recipe for Pie Crust
  • 2 cups fresh red raspberries
  • 2 cups fresh blueberries
  • 1 cup + 1 Tbsp. white sugar
  • 1/4 cup tapioca
  • 1 Tbsp. flour
  • 2 tsp. freshly grated lemon peel
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract of paste
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp. milk or water

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Line a 9 inch pie plate with bottom pastry.

In a bowl, combine berries, 1 cup sugar, tapioca, flour, lemon peel, vanilla, and cinnamon.  Gently stir, and pour into pastry lined pie plate.

Top with remaining pie crust cut and wove into lattice.

Brush with milk or water, and sprinkle with remaining 1 Tbsp. sugar.

Bake at 400 degrees F for 45-50 minutes or until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbly.

Enjoy!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

A Pansy for Your Thoughts

Purple Pansy Watercolor - 6x9 140lb Saunders Hot Press

Purple Pansy Watercolor – 6×9 140lb Saunders Hot Press

A Pansy for Your Thoughts.

I painted this pansy one night this past week, and it kept “speaking to me” in a thoughtful way.

It just keep saying, “A Pansy for Your Thoughts.”

Anyone that knows me well, knows I’m a bit of a “deep thinker.”  In fact, you might say I overthink things.  But it is who I am, and now that I’m in my fifth decade of life, I’m pretty okay with it.  A nice place to be.

So today, I just wanted to share a bit of me, and I’d love to hear about a bit of you.  You know… A Penny… A Peso… A Pansy for Your Thoughts.


I care what people think…
about me…

I really wish
I didn’t.

But I always want
everyone to like me.

And if they don’t,
it bothers me – a lot.

And it is not possible for everyone to like me.
I really do “get” that.

But it still troubles me,
no matter how hard I try.

My head
understands this.

But my heart,
which I prefer to think with,

Or just can’t help
but to think with…

just can’t wrap
its arms around the notion.

Is it just a part
of my DNA?

That is what
my personality assessment reveals.

I’m a High “I”
not matter the circumstance.

So I truly believe,
though I wish it weren’t so,

I will still think this way
if I live to be 108.

Do you care what other people think…
about you?

A Pansy
for your thoughts…

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi