Wednesday, September 17, 2014

So, We Moved...Again!!!


It seems that the challenge of living 7000 feet in the air (originally I thought 6000...I was wrong. We were situated @ the highest point of The Springs!) has been too much for me. I just never acclimated to such thin thin air. So, we have kissed Colorado Springs and Pikes Peak good-bye, and said hello to Centennial, which is 1500 feet lower in elevation. It can only help! I did not think that the beauty could get any better, but I was wrong about that too. We are sitting facing a state park, hence, the 180 degree vista is waaaaay more than I could have imagined. These pics are from Monday and Tuesday nights' sunset, respectively. There is much more sky, the sunsets seem to go on and on and on, and then on even more.

We are so so grateful to be here, although deeply exhausted, looking forward to yet another new begins...the Centennial house!

  'And the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud to lead them the way, and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, to go by day and night.'
Exodus 13:21

ps. The kitty's and the  frozen pesto made the hour journey North w/out issue....whew on both counts!!!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Way Way Back Thursday...Russia

The Schwartz Family, Russia, early 1900's
This is the earliest picture that I have, passed on to me from Mom's old pics, probably from her Mom, my Gram. This is a photo of my Grandmother's brother's wife (with Maury in her lap), and, at the time their 3 children, Maury, Sophie, Esther, and the nurse. That beautiful little girl had 2 daughters and a son. Ann, the eldest of the 3, just passed away a few short weeks ago at the age of 92. Had this family, and so many many others not left Russia when they did in the early 1900's, many of us would not be here, we would never have even been born; as within the 6 million murdered in the concentration camps were their parents and their parents parents. We would have to physically go back to Russia to find records. I know they exist. However, this is the story of a vast number of Jewish families who left Russia, Europe and Eastern Europe before WWII. Even so, there were 'Pogroms' already in place wiping out entire towns in Russia. The famous 'Fiddler on the Roof', written originally as a story in 1894, about the poverty stricken Tevye, a dairyman and his family, by Solomon Naumovich Rabinovich or better known by his pen name, Sholem Aleichem, depicts the beginning of the anhilalation of Jewish families in Russia. The history, the ancestry is rich, and most thankfully, still living on....
Cousins, Ann (daughter of Sophie in top pic), Mom and Ellie, Ann's baby sister, NYC, around 2008

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Wordless Wednesday

'Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.'
Isaiah 40:30-31

Wednesday, August 20, 2014


I painted (copied) the Prophet, 'Daniel' in 1987 (mixed media, I used everything) for an off Broadway production on his life, called 'El Shaddai'. El Shaddai is conventionally translated as God Almighty. According to Exodus 6:2, 3, Shaddai (שַׁדַּי) is the name by which God was known to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. The name Shaddai is again used as a name of God later in theBook of Job. 

For all these many years, I had this, the printers copy of 'Daniel', safely tucked away in my portfolio. However, recently, like a burst of light, that small voice said, bring it out, this is frame worthy. So, after some trial and error, I found that I was able to have beautiful copies made at, of all places, Kinko's. And into 2 frames 'Daniel' landed. One for me and the other for the author of 'El Shaddai', C.B. Murray 4th.

 'Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.'
Matthew 5:16

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Wordless Wednesday

Grace upon grace...

Sunday, August 10, 2014

August, So Far!

August 1, 8:15PM
August 2, 6;50AM
August 5, 8:30AM
August 5, 8:01PM
August 9, 7:50PM
 There are wars and rumors of wars, children are dying on mountainsides and in cities, close to home and across the ocean, planes are falling out of the sky, people are sick w/ deadly viruses, not to mention cancer and other terrible diseases. There remains such frightening gun violence in this country, so many injustices. This is really too much for the central nervous system to handle. However, the sun still rises in the East and sets in the West, the moon still has phases and quarters. So from sunset of August 1, to last night's Super moon, I am extraordinarily grateful to have captured some of the beauty of the rising and setting of the sun, the crescent moon, turning, just a week or so later, into a Super summer moon, and the true gift of a double rainbow...the Promise lives!

This is a song we sang every Sabbath evening @ camp in the Berkshires. I was there from the time I was 5 until I was 15, for 2 months, every summer. I was taking a long walk the other night, and these beautiful words came welling up, and out of me!

'The Lord of all does reign supreme
Ere yet this world was made and formed.
When all was finished by His will,
Then was His name as King proclaimed

And should these forms no more exist,
He still will rule in majesty.
He was, He is, He shall remain;
His glory never shall decrease.

And one is He, and none there is
To be compared or joined to Him.
He ne’er began, and ne'er will end,
To Him belongs dominion’s power.

He is my God, my living God;
To Him I flee when tried in grief;
My banner high, my refuge strong,
Who hears and answers when I call.

My spirit I commit to Him,
My body, too, and all I prize;
Both when I sleep and when I wake,
He is with me, I shall not fear.'

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Makeshift Greenhouse..

This AM, from under the tent...
Soggy outside...
It is the 'monsoon season' in Colorado. Cool heavy rains in the afternoons. Apparently, this was the 'normal' weather pattern for decades upon decades in Colorado (centuries, I dare say). The past 10 years have proven to be dry. Meaning, the 'normal' amount of heavy snow during the winters (totally snowed in, from what I have been told), and dry dry dry, hot summers, made the conditions just right for a Waldo Canyon fire, or a Black Forrest fire. A tinder box. So, having lived through both of these devastating and deadly fires, I choose the rain.

To try to keep the raised garden beds from floating away, I made a makeshift greenhouse, if you will. I initially bought the tarp to try to protect the plants from the hail. Much more difficult to predict, as it happens so fast. Really, it is just an 8' tarp. I bolstered it up w/ a couple of bamboo stakes held in large terra cotta planters, along w/ the taller stakes for the growing pants, so the water would run off. The perimeter basil did get soaked, but they will be fine, they are hearty. Once the sun comes back out, (please sun, come back out!), the July/August warmth will pick up where we left off, and the harvest will continue. In the meantime, I am so so glad to have made the makeshift greenhouse may not be pretty, but it did the trick!!!

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Amy's Famous Pesto!

Straight from the garden...
Ground salted, roasted pistachio's...
...add the parm and olive oil until the texture is 'right'...
Herb spinach pasta...handmade..
The final product...8oz of heaven..
 It is a you go. I will give it to you in a brown sandwich bag, frozen in a 4 ounce container. It will say, 'Amy's Famous Pesto' on the bag, written w/ a black marker. Once asked, 'What is the shelf life?', I did not hesitate to say, 'It won't get that far, you will eat it!!!'. Totally confident in the product! If you ever saw the movie, 'Baby Boom', w/ Diane Keaton, you will remember how her kitchen was totally taken over w/ the baby food she made by hand. This was the case, last year w/ my freezer. All you could see was frozen pesto when looking for the Gelato.  Everyone has a different way to make it. I was asked to do a pesto making 'demo' @ a friend's house a few weeks back. Everybody was making something Italian. The best compliment I received was from a friend who has lived in Italy for the past 14 years w/ his Family. He said to me, 'I know pesto, and this is pesto!'

So, yesterday, I made the first batch, small for me. Jimmy picked up some handmade pasta @ the Old Colorado City Farmer's Market earlier in the day. Spinach, herb, I believe. (They usually write what you bought on the bag...there was nothing, so this is my educated guess!).
It has such a bright flavor!! W/ the pesto, a little extra parm, a few more leaves of basil, and everyone was pretty happy. Today, the sweet potato pasta, also from the farmer's market, w/ some cooked down cherry tomatoes, and the fresh pesto, again, a little extra parm and more basil from the garden...ahhhhh.
 Ingredients: Basil, roasted salted pistachio nuts, grated parm, olive oil

The satisfied gardener!

'She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard'
Proverbs 31:16

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Wordless Wednesday

Colored Pencil Society of America

LOVE this!!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

And Grow She Will...

My thought is, good thing the tomatoes will turn red, in time, because I would never be able to find them in the thick growth which is set before me. There are many beautiful little blooms just getting ready to pop and give us some juicy Roma's. We have been using the dill on our salmon steaks, and the beautiful delicate, edible flowerettes are like lace umbrellas. The basil, well, I am inches away from making pesto, and our summer salads have been graced w/ the freshness of all 4 varieties. It is just mid-July....

I wish you could smell the aroma wafting off of all these plants...

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Wordless Wednesday

Dream job, hauling over sized Dahlia' pink too boot!!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Wordless Wednesday

 Late afternoon walk around the lake @ The Broadmoor...

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Wordless Wednesday

or, Queen Anne's Lace

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Build it, And They Will Come...

4 varieties of basil, some Italian oregano & sage..
4 weeks ago..
Roma's, growing, flowering, dill & Italian oregano, flat leaf parsley..
4 weeks ago..
Purple, Thai, sweet and Greek basil...staked for security..
Amazing growth!!!
4 weeks ago..
Whoops, wrong quote. The 'Field of Dreams' quote just feels fitting. More like plant it in a sunny spot, water, fertilize every 2 weeks, hand out some serious TLC, and they will grow! It has been close to 1 month since we put this years' garden together. The first week is very telling. Some of the basil immediately keeled over. Then, there were some spots which needed filling in. So, now I have Italian oregano, dill (you can never have too much fresh dill), and thyme. The tomato plants are flowering, some fuller than others. But the initial concerns are now over (short of the hail we had last week...there will be more before the Summer is over...I would wager money on that!). Some of the bamboo stakes are in place, and I will continue to rotate and add them as the need presents itself. The basil is already making its way into our food. It cannot be overstated how fresh herbs and veggies straight from the garden to the plate is so potent in aroma and flavor. So, here are the comparison pics, from day one, to almost 30 days later!!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

A Little Music for Wednesday...

George Benson
Original Studio Version, 1976
The real fun starts @ 4:30
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