Monday, July 14, 2008

A Few of My Favorite Things

Monsoon rains, gully washers, dark clouds, thunder and lightning and saucer-size drops. I love them all. The air is full of waiting and suspense. I have always loved rain storms but I especially love the summer monsoons. The kid in all of us comes out in the aftermath too - skim boarding down streets, rushing through dips and splashing in puddles!

This weekend we were blessed with not one but two great storms. These were the knock-your-socks-off kind of storms that literally shut down freeways, flooded neighborhoods, and made even my tile roof leak. But I must admit that I love them all! They bring back great growing up memories, they smell like the desert is blooming and they provide an intimacy that seems lost on a bright and sunny day. Best of all I am grateful for rain in this desert.

Fun dates keep the smiles in our marriage! This weekend we continued our "research" into fun, cheap, and easy dates!! We laughed at ourselves as we dressed in vintage "cow" and got free food from Chik-Fil-A! Yum! We also enjoyed free Slurpees from 7/11 but laughed at their size - 7.11 ounces!! We have cataloged months worth of fun dates this year and it just proves to me that we are having as much fun now as we did when we were first dating, eons ago!

Great conversation!! I love when the give and take of conversation gets past the basics, the platitudes, and the niceties and into deep conversing! I have sons that I can really talk with. I love it when we have the time to really share and talk. My daughter and I are finding time to really listen and talk to each other. How I enjoy when good friends have time to really visit with me, when I just click with someone and you can instantly engage in great conversation. I cherish this kind of time and this kind of friendship. It takes work to set your own thoughts aside and to really listen to someone else but it is when spirit truly speaks to spirit and it's wonderful!!

Tomatoes, tomatoes, tomatoes!! We have been so blessed with a bounteous garden this year! I've learned how to use what I have ---- to can, bottle, dry, and create! Tomato soup, tomato salads, tomato sandwiches, tomato tortillas, tomatoes in every kind of dish you can imagine - Now it's pumpkin time! I've baked them and frozen them and added them to meatloaf! The zucchini have finished for the season but the freezer is loaded with bags ready to add to zucchini "crab" cakes, galabacitas, zucchini bread and muffins and even brownies. If nothing else gets done this summer it has been the summer of learning in the kitchen. I love the bounties of full pantries and produce baskets!

Books, Books, Books! I love the quote:
"I would be most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves. " ~Anna Quindlen, "Enough Bookshelves," New York Times, 7 August 1991
I grew up in a reading house, loved (and love) libraries, and still want to bring more and more books into my life.
I've raised readers - and now teach little ones to fall in love with stories and books. Believe me, there is no greater job! Books bring me solace, comfort, companionship, adventure, and peace. I am empowered when I read a book!
"Books can be dangerous. The best ones should be labeled "This could change your life." " ~Helen Exley

This post has been a fun one for me - I learned to add photos from my computer and from the web, I practiced focusing my gratitude for the day, and it feels great to count my blessings!

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