Thursday, August 19, 2010


This was my first blog and it has been fun.  I’ve decided though that I wanted a blog more about my life, family AND creativity.  Now don’t get me wrong, my husband Bob is a very creative guy but he’s not interested in blogging about it.  I will still enter things about our life but I need creativity in my life and this blog title just doesn’t describe my new view point very well.  So if you want to keep up with our family and see what creative things I’m up to you’ll have to go to my new blog at:

My sister, Jerri Ann, and I also have a blog where we share our creativity as well at:

Wow, I feel a bit sad saying goodbye to this blog.  This was my place to learn the ropes and learn more about how I wanted to express myself.  I didn’t keep up as well as I should have but I think part of that was because this blog didn’t really reflect me as well as I wanted it too.  Thanks family and friends for listening and making fun comments.  Please come visit us at out new home and definitely continue to speak up!  See ya at the new diggs…

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The Canadian Tenors- Hallelujah

I haven't been feeling very good latley but today on Oprah I heard this group, The Canadian Tenors, and it made my day better.  Here's the song from YouTube.  I've loved this song but these guys brought it back for me.  Have you heard any songs lately that helped change your mood?

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Who Were You Named After?

Sorry, I've been absent for a while but we've been passing the flu back and forth since Thanksgiving.

Tonight Bob and I were discussing some topics and somehow I mentioned that Debbie Reynolds was the mother of Carrie Fisher (Princess Leah in Star Wars) and Bob didn't know who Debbie Reynolds was!  I coudln't believe it because I was named after a song and series of movies that she made famous in 1957.  I know this is back in the dark ages but this song was very popular then so it is a good example of how music has changed.  Since my husband couldn't remember who Debbie was and what the song was I found it on YouTube.   So for my children and those who wonder where I got my name here's a tribute to Debbie Reynolds as she sings the title song to the Tammy movies.  You might also remember her in "The Unsinkable Molly Brown," and "Singing In The Rain," along with many other films.  If you haven't seen any of these movies then I strongly suggest you watch all of some of them.  They are great!  Enjoy...

Dreamy huh?  Sigh!  My middle name, Jean, is my mother's middle name who was named Norma Jean (real name of Marylin Monroe).  I'm sensing a pattern here.  Where did you get your name?

Friday, November 27, 2009

What About Bob?

Today is Bob’s birthday and I thought that it would be nice to let everyone know how grateful I am for such a sweet and hard working husband.  Since Bob and I haven’t been married that long we are still learning new things about each other all the time.  One of the attributes that I appreciate about Bob is his willingness to help others.  He is always helping people with their computers.

Bob always seems to have a child in his arms.  Bob loves to get down on the floor and play with the grandchildren.  We just wish that we lived closer and could see them more often.  Bob also loves his children and is always looking for ways to make their lives more comfortable.  We love to laugh together also and that makes life more fun and adventurous.  I am grateful for such a loving and giving husband.   Happy Birthday Honey!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Forest Fire

On July 25? we had a huge lightening storm which started numerous fires in S. Utah.  Unbeknownst to us one of the fires was just over the mountain from our small town.  I have bad asthma and so am always on the look out for forest fires because that means I need to leave the area so that it doesn’t do damage to my lungs. 

I wasn’t feeling very good for a few weeks but didn’t know exactly why when I happened to look out one of our windows and saw a fire at the top of one of our local mountains.  I got online and discovered that it had been burning for weeks. 

On Aug. 20th my nephew, Stefan, and I set out for my sisters house.  I knew that since this fire had been set by lightening and it had been let to burn that they were just going to let it burn itself out unless it got close to buildings.  Unfortunately as Stefan and I were driving we saw another fire off in the distance.  This fire was visible for hours and it was a lot bigger than the one we had just fled from.  We had planned on stopping for the night but the town where we wanted to stop was engulfed in smoke.  There aren’t many towns in the Nevada desert.  So we just drove straight through. 

I was away from home for about five weeks.  The fire near our town came down the side of the mountain.  The Fire Fighters cleared a fire break but our town eventually had to evacuate and several buildings were burned. 

Some families had the fire stop just yards away from their homes.  It was frustrating knowing that my community was going through that while I was sitting safe miles away.  I was worried about my family but they were just outside the evacuation boundary but were on a 15-min. evacuation standby.  My mom and husband had to have a pass to be able to get into our community. 

Eventually the fire was put out and the air cleared.  By that time I had been to the Doctor a few times because of lung damage. 

They put me on antibiotics and steroids.  My voice was gone and when I coughed it was croupy or a whistle.  Eventually I was able to come home but the damage to my lungs had been done.  I’m still not feeling good but after four months of antibiotics and steroids my bronchial tubes are starting to loosen up.  Last weekend my husband and I took a ride to the fire area to see up close what had been burned.

It is amazing to me how brave and how hard the Fire Fighters work.  This year there have been 412 fires started by humans which burned 2289 acres.  721 fires started by lightening, burning 107784 acres.  107 prescribed  (fires started by the Fire Dept. to burn off old brush) fires, burning 19687 acres.  We are so grateful to the Fire Fighters who put their lives on the line to keep the rest of us safe. 

My son, Sean, has trained to become a Fire Fighter and can’t wait for the day when he can make a living protecting others.  As a mother it is scary to think of him working in such a dangerous career but he is doing it because he loves people and want to protect them.  Thank you to all of those who serve in their communities to help, serve and protect.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Friday Food Challenge

I’m switching my Wednesday Food Storage Challenge to Friday and since I’ve posted it this week I’ll pick up this next week.  The websites that I suggested (Blinkies on the side) have soooo much information that it is a bit overwhelming.  One good piece of advice that they all give is to just choose one little thing and do that.  Currently I am focusing on learning how to cook with what I have.  I’m now trying to decide what to cook this week…hmmmm.


Today I am grateful for a wonderful cousin who just succumbed to cancer.  My cousin Tony was the kind of guy that everyone would love to have as a best friend.  He was the best friend of his lovely wife Debbie.  They were partners in life, parenthood and business.  Tony was generous and loving to those around him. 

One fun memory I have of him and his wife was when I moved away from the town where they live.  Me and my best friend were in our favorite restaurant having one last dinner together.  I heard my name and looked up and there was Tony and Debbie at a nearby table with big grins on their faces.  We all said our hellos and it turned out that my friend knew them from years before and had a very high opinion of them.

Eventually they got up and left the restaurant and said their goodbyes.  I was sad that I wouldn’t see them as often.  When we finished our meal we asked for the check and the waitress said that our bill had been taken care of and that we were supposed to order desert.  Tony and Debbie had paid our bill!  The situation made me laugh because it didn’t surprise me at all.  This isn’t a great memory because they paid for our dinner.  It’s a great memory because he was the kind of person who helped people by using his time, attention and love.  Tony has left a great legacy for his children and those who loved him.

Tony was older than I am so we didn’t get to know each other until we were older.  He was the kind of man that made me want to be a better person.  We have lost several loved ones this year, My Uncle Cliff and my Grandson Ethan. 

Some of us get the opportunity to live long lives and some are so special that they are called home to do more important work.  No matter how much time we have on this earth we need to take advantage of the time we have and spend time with those we love.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Hamburger Vegetable Barley Soup

My Wednesday Food Storage Challenge contribution is my Hamburger Vegetable Barley Soup.  This is the soup I make when I have leftover vegetables or on a cold day.  The house smells so good for hours. 

To go with this soup I will usually make corn bread or put some wheat ingredients in the Bread Machine for bread.  This week I made whole wheat bread and the smells were both so good and strong that they almost fought for attention.  Can you have too much of a good thing?  Now that I think about it I’m not sure if this is a stew or soup.  Here’s my recipe. 

Hamburger Vegetable Barley Soup


1 lb. Hamburger cooked and drained

1 Onion, chopped or 2 Tbl. dried Onion caramelized

32 oz. Chicken Broth

2 cloves minced Garlic or 2 tsp. dried minced Garlic

2 cans diced  or stewed Tomatoes

1 cup Barley or Millet

1 can Corn (or leftover vegetables in fridge)

1 can Green Beans (or leftover vegetables in fridge)

Season with Italian Seasoning or dried Basil, dried Parsley Flakes and Oregano to taste.  Experiment to make it your own.


Cook hamburger (break up) and chopped onion until the hamburger is evenly browned and the onion is caramelized (caramelizing add some sweetness).  Drain the grease being careful to not dump out the onion.  Add chicken broth and garlic to the hamburger and onion mixture and bring to a mild boil.  Add tomatoes, barley and vegetables and simmer until the barley is cooked.  This is a good recipe for a slow cooker also.  If cooking on the stove top be sure to check the fluid level.  If the barley soaks up too much liquid add some water.  You decide how much broth your family likes.

When I made this soup this week I had some fresh celery, fresh carrots and fresh leeks that needed to be used so that’s what I added to this soup.  I also added a can of corn.  I’ve heard that you should try to add as many colored vegetables as you can because each color represents different vitamins.  Plus it looks prettier.  This pictures was taken the next day, when it was cold, because I forgot to take pictures when I was cooking it.  I need to get used to taking pictures.

This soup is different every time I make it because I add something a bit different.  No matter what I put in it though it is good every time.  This week I forgot to season it and it still taste wonderful.  I added a little kosher salt to my bowl, my mother didn’t add anything and my husband added some pepper so we were all happy.  I make this soup when we have company in the winter because it make a large pot full.  We always have leftovers to enjoy!

If you use dried onion and garlic and canned vegetables, everything in this recipe is from your food storage except the hamburger.  I’ve been researching how to can hamburger because it isn’t available in the stores.

Merrium-Webster definitions

Soup: a liquid food especially with a meat, fish, or vegetable stock as a base and often containing pieces of solid food.

Stewfish or meat usually with vegetables prepared by stewing

Rachel Ray has coined the word, Stoup.  I think that must be what this is.