You’ve Always had the Power

Airquest Aviation, Butler, PA September, 2017

Airquest Aviation, Butler, PA September, 2017

You’ve always had
the POWER
my Dear,

You just had
to learn it
Yourself.

-Glinda, the Good Witch
The Wizard of Oz

Don’t doubt that you can do it.
Don’t doubt that you have what it takes.

Trust in yourself.
You have it in you.

You can do it.
You have the power within you.

You’ve always had the power.
You just need to trust in yourself.

Believe in yourself.
You’ve always had the power.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Let’s be Better Fixers

The Old Farmall Tractor, Mars, PA - September, 2017

The Old Farmall Tractor, Mars, PA – September, 2017

Let’s be Better Fixers.

Grandma was a fixer….
From very early on, when she was only 9 or 10 years old,
she was the cook, laundress, housekeeper, and “mother” to her younger siblings after her young mother died.

She learned to splice electric wires and plumb a bathroom,
she could make a hearty feast from a bone,
she mended and hemmed and soaked and bleached and waxed and scrubbed.

She did this throughout her entire life.
She washed out bread bags and hung them on the line to dry to re-use.
She repaired lawn mowers and glued broken concrete bird baths back together.

When I was young, I thought it silly.
Sometimes I was even embarrassed of her patched clothes
or meager belongings and “fixed” things.

But Grandma is gone.
And the longer she is gone, the more I admire the way she lived.
She didn’t throw things away – she fixed them.

Do we too quickly throw things away these days?
Marriages?  Friendships?  Aging parents and grandparents?
Kids with bad behavior or bad grades?

We need to cherish what and who we have while we have them.
Because some things we love won’t last or be with us forever.
We should love, care for, fix when broken, and heal when sick our “broken” things.

We keep them because they are worth it.
Because we are worth it.
Let’s try to throw less away, and let’s be better “fixers!”

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Pumpkin Chili

Pumpkin Chili.

Autumn is the season for all things pumpkin!  (Can I get an “Amen?”)

So when a friend recently mentioned pumpkin chili, I just knew I had to try it.

I found a recipe online and tweaked it a bit.

And Oh My Pumpkin Lovin’ Heart!!!!!

Not only is this pot of comfort delicious, it is healthy and nutritious!  It’s chock full of veggies and ground turkey and chicken.  Pumpkin is heart healthy with fiber, potassium, and vitamin C.  Tomatoes provide the antioxidant lycopene, which has been linked to many health benefits, including reduced risk of heart disease and cancer. They are also a great source of vitamin C, potassium, folate and vitamin K.

A tub of this is being delivered today to a family near and dear to my heart who just welcomed a new baby (their second), along with some cornbread, so busy Mommy doesn’t have to worry.  Hoping big brother loves this as much as my granddaughter loved sampling all the ingredients that went into making this yesterday.

Give this yummy recipe a try, and let me know how you LOVE it.

Happy Pumpkin Season!

Pumpkin Chili

Ingredients

  • 1 lb ground turkey
  • 6 links (8 oz.) sweet apple with maple chicken sausage (or your fave), chopped
  • 1 sweet onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/3 cup chopped sweet red, orange, or yellow peppers
  • 2 16 oz. cans cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 16 oz. cans pumpkin puree
  • 1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 16 oz can diced tomatoes
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 3 Tbsp. chili powder
  • 1 Tbsp. oregano
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 2 tsp. brown sugar
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 Tbsp. olive oil

Garnishes (optional):  sour cream, shredded cheddar cheese, sliced green onions

Directions

In a large pot, heat 2 Tbsp. olive oil, and saute onion and garlic for 2 min.  Add peppers, and saute another 3-4 mins.  Remove from pot and reserve.

Add 2 more Tbsp. olive oil to pot, and brown ground turkey and chopped chicken sausage approx. 10 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper.

Add veggies back into pot, along with beans, pumpkin, tomatoes, chicken broth, and spices.  Stir well.

Lower heat, cover pot, and simmer for 1 1/2 – 2 hours, stirring occasionally.

To serve, garnish (if desired) with a dollop of sour cream, shredded cheddar cheese, and sliced green onions.

Enjoy!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Always be Yourself… Unless you can be a Flamingo

Flamingo Pond at the National Aviary, Pittsburgh, PA

Flamingo Pond at the National Aviary, Pittsburgh, PA

Advice from a Flamingo.

Wade into life.
Stand tall.
Stand out in a crowd.

Hang out with your flock.
Find the right balance.
Keep your beak clean.

Show off your true colors.
Even the pinkest of flamingos starts out gray.
Don’t be afraid to get your feet wet.

Always be yourself!
Unless you can be a flamingo….
then be a flamingo!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

*Inspired by YourTrueNature

 

 

Just Do it Anyway

Elvis the Penguin at the National Aviary, Pittsburgh, PA - September, 2017

Elvis the Penguin at the National Aviary, Pittsburgh, PA – September, 2017

Just Do it Anyway!

It might be scary.
It is probably risky.

What if someone is watching,
and it turns out to be a flop?

What if people laugh?
What if they say, “I told you so.”

There’s a pretty huge chance it won’t work out.
But guess what?  That’s the point!

Be brave!
Just Do it Anyway!

 

This is a mantra I am trying to reiterate to myself.  I am taking on new experiences, new challenges, new risks – with my art, writing, self-development….

It might turn out to be a great big flop, but I’ll never know if I don’t just do it anyway!

Is there something you’ve always wanted to do?  Pick up a paint brush?  Write a book?  Travel to a faraway place?  Learn a new skill?  Begin a new relationship?  Record a song?  Learn to fly?  Heck – maybe it’s even just a new hairdo?

It might not turn out……..

But then it might?

If you don’t just do it anyway, how will you ever know?

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

 

 

It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane, It’s…Birdly!

It’s a Bird, It’s a Plane, It’s… Birdly!

Hubby and I made a little visit this past weekend to the National Aviary located in our beautiful city of Pittsburgh.

It’s pretty awesome having America’s only independent indoor nonprofit zoo dedicated exclusively to birds in our own “backyard” with a diverse collection of more than 500 birds representing more than 150 species from around the world, many of them threatened or endangered in the wild.

And guess what?  We’ve never visited it before this past weekend!

Bird lovers that we have become…..  meet some of our new friends.

I wish I could remember their names and species, but maybe some of you are better at identifying.  I simply found them fascinating and beautiful.

The eagle took my breath away.

But wait….. what is this rare bird?

It’s Hubby as a virtual reality eagle flying over New York City on BIRDLY!

Have you ever dreamed of flying like a bird?  BIRDLY has made that possible, and we were able to experience it on our recent visit.

The exhilarating flight simulation experience allows you to fly like a bird while lying on the simulator chest down, flapping your arms using hinged wings, and controlling  your direction and speed while a fan simulates headwinds. Motors and actuators tilt and dip your body in response. The sensory-motor coupling essentially tricks the brain, so between the motion, wind, sound and visuals, you are effectively flying!

For me it was exciting and terrifying at the same time.  Biggest ninny poo poo of all time, I am deathly afraid of heights.  But I wasn’t going to let that stop me.  It is clearly safe, and oh what a feeling of freedom it was!

So yep – got to experience flying like a bird this past weekend!  I’d say that’s a check off the ole’ bucket list for sure!  Hubby was so busy telling me how to flap my wings, he didn’t think to take a picture.  Does that surprise anyone that knows him!?!?

He really was trying to help me as I was…. [ahem]… let’s say the “most vocal” of all the flyers that afternoon…

If you get a chance, do visit the National Aviary and take a flight on Birdly where you can “Fly Like an Eagle.”

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

 

This Past Week

This past week I received a surprise bouquet of flowers
from a generous friend named Gary
who grows the most beautiful dahlias.

This past week I also learned I lost a dear blogging friend
whose name was Terry from his beautiful husband named Gary
after I spoke to him just the day before sharing my love and admiration.

This past week I worked and I played and I laughed and I cried
in determination and freedom and joy and in sorrow
for family and friends both cherished in my life and those I have lost.

Tomorrow is Labor Day in the United States.
A day set aside to honor the American labor movement and the contributions
workers have made towards the strength, prosperity, laws and well-being of our country.

I think about Gary laboring over the beautiful flowers he planted.
I think about Terry laboring to breathe when I spoke to him the day before he died.
I think about Gary laboring to get through the days following the death of his love.

I think about those who labor to provide comforting care to hospice patients.
I think about those who labor in hospitals and emergency rooms and trauma centers.
I think about those who labor to protect our country’s freedom.

I am grateful for a weekend of respite
and the opportunity to work
this past week.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi