I finally know what I want to be when I grow up.

Since I was a child I was crazy about, and always felt at home deep in nature. My happiest memories are out in the woods on a walk, or wading in the reeds at the edge of the lake watching the leopard frogs leap, sometimes spying a doe quietly watching me, or watching minnows swim by my feet as I walked along the shore.I know every inch of the acres of my mother’s property back home in Northern Wisconsin. I know every toadstool, bed of moss, insect, tree and plant.

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Where the rubber meets the road

I am the kind of person who loves every blade of grass. My home and yard are neat, not out of control, and the wildflowers in summer are riotous! Birds come from all over to eat at the buffet I offer them. I’m tickled they visit. Lizards, centipedes and even snakes are welcome (Snakes usually pass through quickly and should be respected). Spiders are welcome in the house, as long as they are not big enough to pay rent. If they are large, then they either have to pony up the rent, or move out! I keep my place as natural as I can. Nature is critically important to my life.

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The Hook of Anger, and Some Solutions

As hard as it is to admit I’m one of the worst for having an adult temper tantrum. It happens rarely, but when it does I wonder why I can let someone rattle my cage. I’m a devotee of the gentle and understated guru, Eckhart Tolle. I am also a disciple of all things Pema Chödrön. Pema is a lovely western Buddhist nun with a lot of solid, no-nonsense advice about how to not let yourself get hooked.

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‘Tis the season for self care!

A blogger I admire recently spoke about self care. I’d like to add my encouragement for you to practice self care, especially now, as the hectic season of holidays approach.

Start making your personal care come first. Practice early and often. Even a few errands may feel like a mountain of things to accomplish. Don’t beat yourself up when it comes to what you did not accomplish today or this week. Easy does it.

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Being flexible during painful experiences, and the gift of clear seeing.

The other day I was on the phone with a professional from a trusted company. On the call we were dealing with a problem. These things happen. However, I felt like a steam roller went over me. I was not being listened to…at all. I could not get a syllable in edgewise. Someone at his end screwed up. Each time I tried to speak, he interrupted again with his line of thinking, and…he was scolding me! At this point I felt totally humiliated, shamed and small, with a feeling of not knowing what just happened.

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The unexpected joys of working remotely

After 14 years at my last job I was allowed to work remotely toward the end of my tenure there. First it was two days remote per week. Then after two years, three days remote. This took awhile for me to adjust. I wondered what working totally remotely will look like, thing it would be lonely, boring or stifling.

Four and a half months ago I was laid off that job. Being home for four months, I had a lot of time to make adjustments to being home full time. That’s a lot of alone time for a single gal out in the sticks. There were physical and emotional adjustments being made. And honestly, a whole new landscape eventually showed itself to me. It took time to unfold, but by the end of four months, everything looked and felt different.

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Healthy boundaries and carving out time for you

A friend of mine is like me, a people pleaser. Nothing wrong with that as long as you don’t overdo it. She’s almost at the cusp of learning to care for herself first. I have been gently giving advice, to empower her, yet respecting her choices.

Image credit goes to Pexels @ www.pexels.com
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Anyone can make soup

Always wanted to make homemade soup? I do it all the time. Helen Daley, my mother, taught me well, early on. Read, and enjoy!

PattyCakes

I joke with people that I’ve been making soup since I was a zygote. I’m not even sure what a zygote is, but I make consistently good home made soup every time. After learning to scramble eggs, and make all day spaghetti sauce at an early age, I learned to make soup. All three of my brothers can make good soup, and we learned it all from our Mom. My mother always had a huge pot of soup on the back burner of her stove, even in the heat of Summer.

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Dreamsicle Quick Bread

My latest work on my PattyCakes Blog.

PattyCakes

As a foodie, my problems are often solved with some form of food or cooking. I don’t like the mess of mixing psyllium with water and then chugging it down. Why not bake it into foods? I read up on the internet and found hundreds of recipes using psyllium, so I was excited to give my idea a try.

I call this recipe Dreamsicle bread. It has old mashed bananas, orange flavored sweetened Metamucil, white chocolate and butterscotch chips, and coconut flakes. You could add applesauce to it to make it more moist. It tends to be a bit stiffer than banana bread because the psyllium tends to suck up a lot of the moisture as soon as you add it and mix it in. That’s part of its charm. Despite its medicinal use, this quick bread is delish!

IMG_4682.JPG Ingredients. At left the frozen hunk of mushy banana. Thaw and…

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