About me...

Pop the lid on my Mason Jar and meet my family. Jim {Jimma} and I have four kids, Creston (Ashley), Jami (Matt), Brandon and Chance. Our grandkids, Cade, Kirby, Eisley, Beck and Reed bring us more joy than any Mason Jar could ever hold. I am counting my blessings over and over and thanking God for His amazing love and grace.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

“Out of This World” Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies

This recipe makes the best Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies ever, bar none!

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. Baking Soda
1 tsp. Salt
1 cup Crisco
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
1 Tbsp. water
1 tsp. Vanilla
2 eggs
2 cups (quick cooking) oatmeal
12 oz. chocolate chips
1 cup pecans

Sift together flour, soda, and salt in bowl. Set aside. Blend Crisco, sugars, water and vanilla in another bowl. Beat in eggs, one at a time. Add this to the flour mixture. Blend well. Stir in chips, oatmeal and pecans. Spoon on ungreased cookie sheet. Bake 325-350 degrees for 10-12 minutes

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Irish Soda Bread

On St. Patrick’s Day my friend, Mary made Irish Soda Bread and brought it to the clinic where we volunteer. Needless to say, I made several trips to the kitchen that day to grab a piece of Irish Soda Bread. It was that addicting. My first mistake was tasting it, my second mistake was brining a piece home for Jim to try. He liked it as much as I did and we both craved more!

That afternoon Jim and I were reading the sale ads for the local Publix and much to our delight, they had Irish Soda Bread on sale. They had two different kinds, one with and one without, caraway seeds. Mary’s had caraway seeds, so we wanted that kind. Since it was late in the afternoon, I figured Publix would be sold out of Irish Soda Bread. I looked up their phone number, called the store and spoke with a real sweet gal in the bakery department. She found one loaf that had caraway seeds. I asked her to put it on hold and told her Jim would be there shortly to pick it up. I made a quick grocery list and sent Jim out the door to pick up our treat.

In this particular Publix, our cell phones will not work in their store. You have to go outside to make a call. It becomes really frustrating if you need to call home and ask a question when you’re at the store. Fifteen minutes after leaving the house, an annoyed Jim was standing in front of Publix, on his cell phone, with me. “Didn’t you call and put a loaf of bread on hold? There is a little oriental lady working in the bakery that doesn’t speak or understand English very well. She seems confused about the caraway seeds and isn’t sure which loaves have them. And, she can’t find the loaf that you put on hold.” Hmmm, I wondered, “Is it that she has a problem with the English language, or that she has a problem with a frustrated redneck???”

I insisted he go back and tell her I had just called the store, and there WAS a loaf of bread on hold. In the meantime I called the bakery department and a young man answered. I explained the situation and he found the loaf of bread behind the counter. I told him to be on the lookout for a big guy with a beard, wearing a cowboy hat, who was very grumpy.

Jim went back to the bakery. The little oriental lady had started passing out samples of Irish Soda Bread and offerend him one. He told her a sample wouldn't help figure out which loaves had caraway seeds. As he grabbed a loaf off the counter, she looked at him and said, “You don’t like, you bring back.” He informed her that he didn’t want a loaf he might have to bring back, he wanted a loaf to eat.

Twenty minutes passed and I called Jim’s cell phone. He was on his way to the house with a loaf of Irish Soda Bread. He didn’t see “caraway seeds” on the label, so it was probably not the kind of bread he went in search of, in the first place. Now I was getting annoyed and told him I was calling the store and complain.

I called the store and the same little gal I had spoken with the first time, answered. I told her that Jim had been to the store and the little oriental lady could not find our loaf of bread, nor could she figure out which loaves had caraway seeds in them. “What oriental lady?” she asked. Uh oh, I didn’t like where this was going at all. “We don’t have an oriental lady working in our bakery. Did you mean to call the Publix on Hwy 17, or the one on 220?” I told her I wanted the store on Hwy 17 and thought that’s the one I called.

“Oh, people get us confused all the time. Our store is the one at 220 and 17, but the address is listed as Hwy 17. The other one is on Hwy 17, but the address is listed as Hibernia Road. You called the wrong store.”

One mystery solved and one mistake I won’t be repeating. When Jim came home, I told him about my big blunder and we both laughed. All the aggravation, back and forth phone calls and we had the wrong store the entire time! Jim said he sure was glad that he didn’t get irate with the little oriental lady and show his butt. Wonders of all wonders on that one! He was actually proud of himself for not speaking his mind to the innocent little lady. He thought for a minute and then said, “I bet I win the lottery tonight, since I was so nice.” Sorry Jim, I don’t think it works that way. If it did, I’m sure we would stand a good chance of hitting the big one!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Dad's Follow Up Appointment

Dad’s doctor told Mom in August that he suspected Dad has Alzheimer’s and recommended she take him to see a neurologist. The doctor gave her some medicine for the Alzheimer’s. Because Mom’s memory is so bad, it’s unclear whether she gave Dad the medicine. It was after Dad fell at the post office in December, that Mom made the appointment with the neurologist, Dr. Quick.

There has been a noticeable change in Dad since he fell, and we had hopes that the fall could be blamed for his confusion and hallucinations. I met Mom and Dad on Monday for the follow up appointment with Dr. Quick and to get the results of the second EEG. Dr. Quick said he was hoping against hope that the EEG would show some improvement, but there is none. All indicators are Alzheimer’s and he thinks the fall has made the situation worse.

Dr. Quick explained what we need to do to protect Dad and what we can expect to take place. As he talked I heard Mom sniffing and I couldn’t bring myself to look at her. I knew she was crying. If I had turned to look at her, I would have broke down in tears, and I didn’t think it would be good for Dad to see us crying. As I write, I have a heart of regret and tears in my eyes, for not turning to her and putting my arms around her.

Every time Mom brings the situation up about Dad, I remind her that we have to be thankful for what we’ve had. In trying to be strong and encourage her, I feel I have closed the door on her being able to share her thoughts, feelings and fears with me. I have not acknowledged her pain and heartache and that’s something I need to do, for both of us. Telling her to be thankful when her world is falling apart, is easy for me to say, but hard for her to appreciate. Mom needs someone to cry out to, and I haven’t been there for her. I can only imagine how hard this is for her, and I’ve got to become a better listener and be more understanding. It’s hard to know the best way to be there for her, but I know how she would react if it were me, and that’s the way I need to be for her.