Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Is That FALL On Its Way?

"Pumpkin Hollow" by Charles Wysocki
The light quality outside is different, the leaves are starting to turn and crops are, too (probably more from the drought this summer than from any seasonal thing), school is back in session...could fall be just around the corner?  Here are a couple of compositions from one of my favorite artists, Charles Wysocki, to get you in the autumnal mood.

"Monty Minds the Store" by Charles Wysocki

Find a wonderful Wysocki gallery at Charles Wysocki Gallery.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Bombdiggity Women, Part II

Julia Child, "The French Chef"
Here is the second in my series of posts on women who just impress the heck out of me by just living their lives with all they have or had and using their talents to better everyone around them. 

I happened to catch Julia Child cooking show reruns on the PBS channel Create last Sunday.  I just enjoyed so much her guests and the charming way she interacted with each, respecting their talents while injecting some of her own culinary knowledge.

I actually heard her say this on one of those reruns, too:  "Salad is for sissies and the French".  You gotta love a gal with a sense of humor like that!

Another really amazing thing about Julia was that fact that she served her country during World War II as an top secret intelligence operative for the Office of Strategic Services.  Posted at different places around the world, she did all kinds of things, from typing file cards to working on a shark repellent. 

Bombdiggity in many, many ways--that was the wonderful Julia Child.  Today's TV personality cooks are fun to watch as well, but no one (yet) matches the wit and wisdom of Ms. Child.

The Muskmelon Connoisseur

At this moment--even though I have eaten my lunch--I am salivating.

I treated myself and bought a muskmelon from a roadside produce stand today on my way back to work from the noon hour.

The thought of that orange fruit with the musky smell and the perfect level of sweetness, the juice that invariably drips down your chin and onto whatever you are wearing--I can hardly wait.  Plus the fact that muskmelons are chock full of good-for-you nutrients; that seals the deal.

I have been craving muskmelon ever since July.  Of course, when I orignally set out to get one was when the salmonella outbreak got a foothold, with many people being sickened by contaminated melons from farms in southwest Indiana.  And, in my opinion, melons from southwestern Indiana are the best. Not only a blow for me personally but for those farmers in my home state who are already suffering through a horrendous growing season.

I knew, but I asked anyway.  It was grown in Battle Ground, just a few miles north of where I live.  The TV news talking heads say that if you ask and the melon was grown locally, you are ok.  So I asked and I bought, and am now looking forward to going home, slicing it into a bowl, and popping it in the fridge for a few days' worth of meals.

Summer may be slipping away quickly, but there's still time to enjoy those simple pleasures, like cool, smooth muskmelon on a warm August day.  These are things we remember when the wind chill rears its ugly head come next January or so.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Bombdiggity Women, Part I

I've decided to start a new series of posts on my blog about women who are just so stinkin' awesome that there is no hope for the rest of us.  Just kidding, just kidding; these women are such inspirations to ALL women, young and old, wherever they may be.  Here are my first two winners:

Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh Jennings after winning
their third Olympic gold medal in women's beach volleyball, 2012.

Quote of the Day

I came across this quote today in the signature block of an e-mail message from the parent of one of the students that will be taking a distance learning honors geometry class this fall:

"The reward for a good deed is to have done it."

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

"Because Love Wins"

A friend passed away this past weekend.  Not of some horrible disease, a senseless crime, or even a terrible car accident.  She evidently fell and hit her head and died of severe brain bleeding.

Terry was a beautiful, vital, intelligent 48 year-old woman with a husband, two children, a solid marriage and a wonderful life in Wichita, Kansas.  After working for General Motors, Cessna, and Raytheon in human resources management, she chose to devote her life to raising her children and caring for others through her church.

Her sister Laura Beth, who was my college roommate and high school friend (as was Terry), wrote this beautiful tribute to her on Facebook late the night she passed:

"Thank you all for posting such encouraging messages during this sad and tragic time. My dear sister Terry passed this afternoon. Her husband, Alan, my Mom, Sig, Tom, Carol and I were at her side. She suffered tremendous swelling in the brain after a fall. We will miss this amazing woman, mother, sister, daughter, wife, friend. My emotions are all over the place right now. But I do know this...Terry would want to be remembered by sharing a kind word to your neighbor, performing an unexpected random act of kindness, forgiving someone you just don't want to forgive, believing in someone no one else does, telling others you love them, making your family a priority. Life on this earth can be taken away any time. Please let's make our lives be all about loving others because love wins. Thank you for remembering and loving Terry."
Because love wins.  Rest in peace, sweet angel.  Although I hadn't seen you in forever, I miss you just the same.