Sunday, December 27, 2009


This is my Mom and my Uncle Homer (her brother) taken at a family reunion last year.  What cuties!

My Mom is a wonderful woman, but she has had a long starring role as a perpetual victim. She continues to play this role and hold herself back from enjoying life. I hate it! OK, I know the old adage, if life gives you lemons make lemonade, is often easier said than done, but I view negative thoughts/emotions that continue to haunt us as a poison. I know for myself, the affects are devastating. It affects me mentally, spiritually, and physically. It has taken me 10 years to recover since my brother's death from the poisoning effects of my grief and negativity. The wishing that things could have been different, the wondering if I would have said this or done that if things could have been different. But, lets face it - we can't go back. None of us. No matter how we would like to right a wrong that we have done or that has been done to us, and yes, we live in a fallen world and things are not all rosy, but we can't change the past, we can only learn from it. From the words of Zig Ziggler, in later life, - it's not positive thinking - it's right thinking we need. I may have paraphrased-forgive me. I remember a story he told where he had met a person that was having a bad day and instead of asking if there was anything he could do and showing true concern, he had told that person to just think positively. Again, I am telling this from memory, so  the story may not be as factual as it is parabalistic. The gist of the story is, the right thing to do, was to empathize and ask the person how they could help, instead of coming across as a know it all with an easy fix.

Well, this morning I'm afraid, I came across as a know it all in the conversation with my Mom. Meaning well, but doing more harm than good. When people are broken, they are not whole and therefore cannot think like a whole person. They are like a victim of a cave in; broken and shattered they are unable to see the light at the end of the tunnel because of all the rubble around them. It is up to the caring and thoughtful person, that can see the light, to ask what they can do to help and then gently lend a helping hand and guide them into the light. Instead I think I tried to shove my Mom into it, causing more bruising, damage, and brokeness - actually delaying her from reaching the light.

I of all people, should realize this, and I guess I do, but now I need to learn how to apply what I know. Again, I remember when I was hurting with the loss of my brother and how someone told me how depression was a selfish disease and how people that "wallowed" in it, often just wanted attention for themselves. I was devastated. How wrong can people be? I didn't want attention - I just wanted the pain to stop. I think back and wish that person would have just said, I know your hurting and there is nothing I can do, but be here if you need a shoulder to cry on. I think I would have healed faster, if I would have been empowered to release my grief instead of feel guilty about it. I needed love and understanding, instead of  know it all judgment.

So, now I need to call my Mom and offer her my helping hand...I only hope she  feels safe enough to take it, after the awful shove I gave her this morning.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Have you seen the price of coffee lately?

Love coffee, but can't afford the smoother blends, and end up with a bitter cup? I learned a little trick from my husbands grandmother - making your own blend.

Grandma Walker used to buy the cheapest bargain brand blend (which can be a little bitter) and then mix it with a more expensive smoother blend or flavored coffee. Initially, you may spend a little more, but in the long run, you can save quite a bit. You can also add a pinch of salt to make the bargain brand taste less bitter.

Another tip - instead of buying flavored coffee's such as french vanilla, I just add a little vanilla flavoring in the grounds before making a pot, it just takes a couple drops, I usually poor a little into the top of the vanilla lid and use that as the dropper, and voilĂ ! You now have flavored coffee.

You can also use cinnamon, cocoa, or other dry spices to taste. Tip on the cocoa, it will be bitter unless you add a little sugar or sugar substitute.

So go ahead, enjoy a cup or two of coffee, you can afford it!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Cool Shot of Full Moon

I was out walking the dogs and caught a glimpse of a magnificent white full moon through our large Maple Tree. Grabbed my digital and tried every exposure, before going to manual with a tri-pod to catch this image. Nice!

The next morning the moon was a large bright yellow. I tried to catch it but it set too soon. I was sooo bummed. :-(

Peeked my interest in photography again and I found my old manual Nikon with some film still in it. Must be 10 years old - wonder if it is any good still? Think I will shoot it and see. :-)

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Organize with liljeani

Check out my new blog that shares my organizing tips step by step. I would also like you to share your organizing tips!

The blog is called Organize with liljeani - So lets hear from what you think!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

A bird in the hand....

I have never found making decisions about my future easy. I have for the most part taken the bird in the hand approach. The one time I haven't, I paid dearly -  financially. Now the question becomes do I learn from my mistake by not taking another risk or do I just keep trying. The old adages, Try, try again, and when you fall off a bike, you need to get back on or you'll never learn to ride, come to mind.

Then of course timing come in to play. Is this the right time for a risk or just to hang steady. With the current state of the economy, I feel safest with a bird in the hand, however I find both hands empty but the bush is full.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

I don't want to eat meat anymore

I found an awesome new website that really inspired me to go back to vegetarianism. It also made me think about what I truly believe and offered me some alternative points of view that fit into my belief system.

I am very open minded and make this choice only for myself. I do not judge others who choose to eat meat or believe differently.

If you love God and all his creations, you may want to check out this site.

Peace be with you.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Sunday Recipe's - It's What's Cookin' at Liljeani's

I love Sundays! I especially love to cook on Sunday's. Great Smells from the kitchen make me never want to leave home!

Today's Specials in Liljeani's Kitchen:

- Carrot Currant Apple Muffins
- Beef Pot Roast

I admit, I haven't always been the greatest cook and I am certainly no Martha Stewart, but I do love it when my experiments come out not only edible but delicious!

I recently purchased a Jack Lalanne juicer. My favorite and easy juice is apple carrot. After I juice, the pulp is left over and being thrifty, I hate to waste, so I use the pulp to make muffins. Up until today, they were just edible, good for you sure, but not good enough to share the recipe. I have always started out with a tried and true recipe, usually from Better Homes, always something simple and quick. So I started out with Better Homes and Gardens recipe for Apple Raisin Muffins and made it my own.

Liljeani's Currant Apple Carrot Muffins

  • 1 and 3/4 cups all purpose flour ( I use the natural white with no bleaching)
  • 1/4 cup sugar (I like to use Raw sugar)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt (sea salt may be substituted)
  • 1 beaten egg ( I use organic, free range, grain fed)
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup cooking oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
  • 1 cup of apple/carrot pulp from juicer
  • 1/4 cup of concord grape juice (organic and 100% juice)
  • 1/2 cup or more of currants
  • 1/4 cup of nuts - (I was going to try hazelnuts but forgot them) :-(
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon and salt. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and add egg, milk, oil, pulp, and juice. Stir just until moistened. Then fold in currants and nuts.

Grease and Flour Muffin Pans. Fill 3/4 way full with mix. Bake in oven for 20-25 minutes. Yum!!

Liljeani's Crock Pot Beef Roast

O.K. again I started with the tried and true recipe, this time coming from the Rival Crock Pot's recipe book and made it my own.

  • whole new potato's - enough to cover 1/3 or more of the bottom of the crock pot.
  • fresh baby carrots - same as above
  • pearl onions - same as above ( used frozen for convenience)
  • beef stock (I used canned for convenience)
  • beef roast - I like Angus - any size that will fit the crock pot or if you are just cooking for 2 like me you might want only a couple pounds.
  • 1/4 cup of dry red wine
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (unless your beef stock is salted - then you can omit or you can you a seasoning substitute for salt)
  • 1 teaspoon sage
  • 1 teaspoon basil
Add vegetables to bottom of crock pot. Mix spices together and season meat. Add meat on tip of vegetables. Mix together wine and beef stock and pour over and around beef. Cook on low 8-10 hours or on High 4-6 hours.

When the Pot Roast is done, you can make a simple gravy out of the left over stock. I like to use Gold Medal's Wondra - the recipes are on the can. Add some canned biscuits or my favorite crescent rolls for a wholesome easy dinner! Note: I don't like using any canned biscuits that have Hydrogenated Oils, and they are sometimes hard to find without it. For an easy alternative try drop biscuits - if you have a favorite recipe - or some tricks you've learned along the way - let's hear it!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

My furry kids and husband

I can't ever take them for granted! Sitting curled up behind me, pleasantly warm, is my Min Pin Lily, self contorted and crammed into my desk drawer lies my one year old cat, Aniken, and last but not least at my feet is my best Pug pal, Lukei (pronounced Lucky), well, he was there a minute ago, hold on a minute...ok, I'm back, let me explain, Lukei is 14 and although my Vet assures me that old age is not a disease, it brings along some pretty common characteristics, for instance; his step falters, he's sometimes confused, and is VERY hard of hearing. To keep him safe, I keep a more watchful eye on him these days, which is why I had to go looking for him.

I checked his usual haunts, the roll away bed in the guest room, his wooly dog bed in the living room, and when he was nowhere to be found, began to panic. Had he gotten outside? Had he fallen or squeezed
himself into a place to small for his pudgy belly and now couldn't get free? He is not a barker, so I would never know if he was trapped, he was just hang out there till I found him. Or my worst fear, had he hid himself away to die?

I called down to my husband in a hopeful yet fretful voice, "Is Lukei with you?" "No, what, call him" was the reply. Call him, I thought, call him, is he crazy, the dog can't hear! Fear driving me, I checked every nook and cranny upstairs to no avail, so I began the descent into the basement, where my husband was sitting on the couch, right next to Lukei, playing a video game. I was flabbergasted! "Call him",  he said again. Husband's cant live with em, can't shoot em!

As usual, not paying attention!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Check out: My Sunday Morning Blog

Hi followers, not sure if your really following are not anymore. I have be AWAL! So sorry, will be catching up soon, I have missed you all!

If you are interested in becoming an author or already are a published author, please check out my new blog. I plan on adding some cool tools, sites and information along with my usual ramblings. Hope to see you there!

I'll be back on this blog now and then to Paws to Dream!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Father's Day without Dad

I woke up this morning and didn't want to face the day. It is the First Father's Day since my Dad passed on and it makes me sad. All the good and happy memories come pouring into my head like a flood bursting through a dam. The not so happy memories, the bad, the ugly ones are trailing along below, lost in the undercurrent. This is on purpose, I choose to remember the good times. Vacations with lots of site seeing and laughter. Games of Checkers, Uno, and Monopoly. Singing and Traveling were the two loves of his life. They remain a part of me and who I am, but somewhere, below the surface, in the deep lies the bad and the ugly.

Depression is a selfish disease and so I push my own self away and think of my nieces, Terry's children, how they lost their Dad so young and how they must be feeling today on Fathers Day. All grown up now, as it has been 9 years and 7 months, since Terry died. But, I can not stay with them in my thoughts for I still cry for our loss. It is still too overwhelming for me to except completely, and I wonder why? Why is it that I cannot seem to except this one fact that my brother has died without tears and then the pushing back of tears, until the idea of it seem completely ludicrous?

Dad and Terry having died 9 years and 4 months apart, but are forever linked in my mind and heart. If truth be told, they are linked to me by mental disease. Dementia and Depression stretching around them and me like a great noose, choking the life from us. Of the three, I escaped into the river of life and find myself floating and being carried along that wild and raging river to a peaceful shallow stream, never delving beneath the surface, lest I be swallowed up by the dangerous aforementioned undercurrent, and so it here that I remain a shallow soul in shallow waters, until at last I am swept under and away to join them.

The Heretic's Daughter: A review

The Heretic's Daughter The Heretic's Daughter by Kathleen Kent

My review

rating: 5 of 5 stars
I found this book to be utterly profound. My patriotic blood runs feverishly through my body as I gain a truer understanding of courage. I have never had to make a stand that would mean my life or death. Although, I must admit that I have pondered the question of how would I face such a situation, would I be like Patrick Henry "Give me Liberty, or give me Death" or would I change sides like Benedict Arnold? Many of our soldiers today may face this question. I pray for them.

Of course, this story takes place about 100 years prior to the revolutionary war, but nevertheless the spirit of personal accountability that lead to heroic patriotism is ever present. Martha Carrier as described by her daughter's fictional narration is a multi dimensional character; neither white, nor black, but many shades of grey. Her strengths are passed onto her daughter but only through a haunting paradox; Martha dies because she speaks the truth while Sarah lives because she speaks a lie. Sarah is haunted by the idea that she is partially responsible for sending her mother to her death only to realize that no one took her mother's life, but her mother proudly lay it down, on principle.

I am reminded that death is the great leveler. So, we do not save ourselves from death, but only postpone it, but at what cost? For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul: Mark 8:36

View all my reviews.

Sunday, June 14, 2009


Just finished reading "Dracula" by Bram Stoker. Bram Stoker did a remarkable job of telling this story from each character's perspective. As a would be writer, I can tell you that this is no easy task. The only problem I have with this book is there is nothing from the main character, the one to whom the book was titled. I think a better title for this book may have been "Van Helsing" or "Madam Mina" at least. Having been a devout fan of the Bela Lugosi film version of "Dracula" I was disappointed that the book revealed very little from Dracula's perspective, the only dim view we have is from early on in the book when Dracula speaks to Mr. Harker, and this again is from Harker's point of view. Lugosi, revealed much of the character through only a few words and a stare, but oh, what a stare! The story of Dracula, Prince of Darkness, has been told many times. If anyone knows of a thoughtful version from Dracula's point of view, I would love to read it!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Writing is Fun, Writing is Hard

Spent most of last evening working on Chapter 1 of my WeBook - Unveiled. Check it out it's linked on this site. I'm sure it still needs work, but I am moving on to Chapter 2. Need an editor anyway.

I love writing and become so involved in this other world that I am creating I lose track of time, but on the flip side, it is really difficult, there is soooo much to consider - plot, sub plot, character development, grammar, pace, etc. My head is spinning! I wonder if all writers find it this difficult when writing their first book. Is it easier or harder on book two?

Monday, May 25, 2009

Good Listen/Read

Audio Books? I love em, what about you? An idea that probably started out for the blind but expanded it's audience to readers that in instances can't read, like while they are driving or having vision problems, or maybe they just want to reminisce and imagine they are listening to an old radio serial. I'm sure there are many more reasons for audio books, but given my choice, I still prefer to read the written word when I can.

Having said this, I want to share my latest find with you. Of course, this is not a new book, for most times I find my books long after they have hit the best seller list. I love to scavenger hunt online, in bookstores, thrift shops, and we can't forget the local and not so local library. Did you know that most Library's share books? If your Library doesn't have the book you need, ask them if they can find it for you. Anyway, I digress. The title of my latest, yet not latest find, is "Dragon Tears" by Dean Koontz. If you like a mystery, then you will want to check out this book. I listened to it on my trip to Fl and found it inescapable. Lucky for me, it rained a lot while in FL, so I was stuck inside listening and listening. I think the book took 13 hours or so to tell. It was dramatically read by Jay O. Sanders.

Warning, this tale is not for the weak of heart nor stomach. It is full of imagery - sometimes extremely unpleasant imagery, psychology, magic, and a talking dog - well sort of. And although it was written in the 90's - it manages to fit in Elvis nostaligia. I give it two thumbs up!

If you've read this book, let me know your thoughts, If you haven't read this book then what are you waiting for?

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Awesome Dog!

Monday, May 4, 2009

I want one!

Trying to go green ? I'm working hard at taking baby steps then I noticed this super cool eco pod - reminds me of a Hobbits house which I have wanted ever since seeing "Lord of the Rings" - What do you think?

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Time Management

Ok, Ive been working all day on getting organized. 1st lesson learned - do not start out your day online if you have other things to do. :-)

I still have sooo much housework to do that I will have to delegate it out in the week. Now is when I would really like to be like Bewitched and twitch my nose and have it all done. Maybe one day. I wouldn't bet on it though - I'm still waiting on the Robot Maid!

Blogging & Twittering

So Far, Blogging to me has been about a public journal, carefully edited. But, after reading other peoples blogs, I think I have a broader view of how I want to blog. At first, I wasn't sure if I wanted to continue blogging, after all I haven't been very consistent. Here it is...another but, you knew it was coming... but, I truly love reading the blogs I'm following and learn so much, that I can't help but want to share too. So, I will be keeping this blog. Done deal.

Now comes the hard part, there are all sorts of other places to blog! So, I need feedback. I like and am familiar with Blogger, but (yes, there that but is again), but my main focus on reading and writing have taken me to other worlds, ie; WeBook (writing), Goodreads (obviously reading). So, do I set up blogs at each of those sites to connect with a more narrowed audience for those subjects or do I stay with what I know?

Now, lets discuss Twitter. Twitter is something new to me and so far I really dig it, but how does it fit in with everything else? If you haven't twittered or tweeted - not really sure the proper terminology - you need to try it! Go to http// OK, so If I have trouble blogging, will I have trouble twittering?

Now, the insanity of all of this hits me! New Blogs + Twitter + E-mail?? And lets not forget myspace and facebook - which I guess I pretty much have. All of this takes a lot of how is the best way to organize it? I'm a complete organizer freak...If I'm not organized, I shut down and become a boob tube zombie, which is part of the reason I haven't been blogging lately.

Let me know your thoughts, in the meantime... I'll google it!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Just me

Boy, it has been a long while since I have blogged. It hurts to touch the keys and know that I will be writing a final earthly goodbye to you, my gregarious Daddy.

Daddy, I want you to know that your transformation is bitter sweet to me. I will miss you madly, but you have  always been  in God's hands and he was gracious to you. There was no fear and I hope little pain in your metamorphosis. You are now a new creature, one that I will probably not be able to communicate with again until I join you, as I trust you went into the light. 

I hope that Terry was your guide, but you were loved by many who passed before you and it is hard to say who would have the honor to be your escort. If you are able to watch over me, I pray you will. I know I have not lost your love but it has transcended this time and this space, for now.

I thank God for giving me the opportunity to spend time with you here. Some believe we choose the life we live here and the souls we encounter. If I did, then bully for me for choosing you. You were not perfect and neither was/am I, but we loved each other and this did not waiver. You brought joy and wonderment to my life. Opening my eyes to see the splendor of the world. Your eyes sparkled and your smile and laugh made everyone happy. You always had a song on your lips. May your voice be heard again in heaven and may the Angels join in for a good old fashioned hymn. 

A.D. Powell
2/3/1928 to 3/24/2009

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Vincent Price

                    May 27th, 1911 to October 25, 1993       

Wow, I still can't believe it! I am wearing a Navajo, Sterling Silver and Turquoise bracelet from Mr. Price's private collection. My alltime favorite actor! I purchased it from his daughter Victoria. I don't think I will ever take it off! I even slept in it last night!! 

I have ALWAYS loved Vincent Price. To me he was the Everything man. He had everything. He was tall, good looking, intelligent, well spoken, artistic, sophisticated. I could listen to him speak endlessly.

He also loved animals! I recently read a book he wrote called " The Book of Joe" about his dog and him. I loved it. So Vincent. I could almost hear his voice while reading it. I also recently watched "The Sinister Image" video where in an interview he used the word Wonderful a lot and it hit me - that is what he was..WONDERFUL - Full of Wonder. A lover of life.

Gone But Not Forgotten - 


Wow, I can't believe how much time has gone by since my last post! A lot has happened!!

So much, that I don't think I am able to record my feelings at this time, but will revisit later when I can collect them along with my thoughts... for now I just want to jot down the events for posterity.

December 25th, 2008 - Larry had 5 seizures and Mom and I spent the day in the Hospital with him.

December 26th, 2008 - Florence Park Care Center called and noted that Dad should be admitted to Hospice.

Ok, now I can get back to blogging... recent events.