There is hope for my town yet!

tmp_27080-20170705_134516151665706There isn’t a whole lot to do around here, and in the several years we’ve been here I just couldn’t get excited about the yearly little rodeo, the little supercross, or the little county fair (a 3 minute walk from one end to the other, and you can see everything in 20 minutes).

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I know this plane, I just can’t remember right now.

But this 4th of July, the privately owned hangar/ airstrip in town hosted a little 3-day WWII airplane show, and for the first time I got excited about a town event! I hesitate to call it an airshow. Fleet Week is an airshow. But there were a couple birds in the air for a couple of flybys, and who can argue with the sound of a P-51?

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Inside the B-24.

 

That said, there were some nice machines there, including the oldest flying Boeing, a B-24, a B-17, and a TF-51 (trainer version of the P-51, and you could purchase an hour of in-flight training for $2,200!). The bombers were open for walk-through tours (when they weren’t out giving rides), and the kids all enjoyed seeing the planes up close.

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Inside the B-17.

After nearly an hour of correcting LK’s questions about planes “blasting off,” I told him he might offend the pilots if he kept talking about the planes like they were shuttles or rockets.

“It’s ‘take off,’ LK, not ‘blast off,'” I said.
“But shuttles are what I know!” he said.
“Pokado and I know horses!” Squeaky volunteered.
LK didn’t miss a beat. “So you and Pokado can say ‘Wow, that plane just rode off!'”

I laughed.

 

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Stearmans!

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In front of the B-24

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Pre-flight check. Neat plane.

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The oldest flying Boeing. Pacific Air Transport, Inc.

“It’s 4:30 and I don’t know what I’m making for dinner.” (A story from last week.)

I desperately needed to go shopping, and a lot of our staples weren’t available, so I took to the pantry to see what I could come up with. Pantry raids are invaluable, truly. Sometimes it’s like a treasure hunt.

“Oh! Here’s a can of olives waaay in the back. You look lonely, come here.”

“Where did these cans of chunk chicken come from?”

Long story short, here’s a throw-it-together dinner that actually worked and everyone liked it. Considering I was craving pizza at the time, I went with Italian seasonings.

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2 cans chunk chicken
small bunch of kale, chopped
2 cans stewed tomatoes, blended

1 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon garlic powder
salt
pepper

1 can olives, sliced

1) Brown the chicken in a little oil over medium heat.

2) Add the chopped kale and continue cooking until kale is wilted.

3) Add the blended tomatoes and spices, bring to boil then reduce to simmer for at least 15 minutes.

Serve over pasta, rice, or maybe even thick slices of toasted garlic bread? Top with sliced olives.

I had rice, so I went with that. I would have loved to add chopped onions and some other veggies (not to mention cheese), but yanno, work with what you have.

10 Years Ago

I started the greatest journey of my life.

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I thank God every day for this man, for the crazy way God orchestrated our meeting, for the adventures since, and for the life we now have. Wouldn’t trade any of it for anything.

There is a time and a place for mud.

(This isn’t one of them.)

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Photo Source: Pixabay Public Domain

A short while ago, the Dearliest and Arc were out shopping and included in their purchases some lovely flowers for me (two geraniums and a purple rhododendron, for my gardening friends). Whilst putting them in the back of the van, Arc said he was glad he and the Dearliest got flowers for me, and he was sure I would like them.

An older couple overheard, and the husband chuckled with a comment along the lines of, “Yes! You get her flowers, and no complaining allowed for 24 hours.” The wife rolled her eyes.

The Dearliest, ever my champion, returned with several long sentences. He appreciates very much that I actually try very hard to not complain as I go through life, and he was quick to inform them.

The husband looked surprised. The wife looked guilty.

The Dearliest said they clearly got along well, and they loved each other dearly, but their reaction suggested that it never occurred to them that something they accepted as normal might not, in fact, be in every marriage.

(Side note: I’m not pretending here to be better than her, or anyone. I’m not perfect, and just because I don’t complain doesn’t mean I don’t have other facets that need work. I need lots of work, but fortunately God has a vision for that, and He can help me with my faults and failings. There are a lot. But I digress.)

It was a day or so later that I thought of the above story, then had a flash of my 11 year old self pushing a full cart of horse manure across a muddy, mucky dirt driveway. The stables I worked at had one muddy spot in particular that seemed to collect all the grossness of horses and dirt in one big puddle during the winter months. You had to go through it to get to the manure pile. It was nasty.

“Ew! Do you see what you’re walking through?” a young tag-a-long asked, taking the wide way around.

I simply answered, “If you don’t look at it, you don’t see it.”

“Oh,” she said after a thoughtful pause.

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Photo Source: Pixabay Public Domain

The memory made me laugh out loud, but then the more I thought about it, the more I realized it kinda fit. A person is constantly moving forward, usually with goals, a destination, a place in life s/he wants to be.

Sometimes mud puddles pop up underfoot, and it’s so easy to complain about the lack of money, the ancient car you have to drive, beans for dinner 5 days in a row, the leaky pipe in the bathroom, and (especially for busy moms) having no time for yourself. Mud puddles come in all shapes and sizes.

But if you choose to not look at it, then you don’t see it. And if you don’t see it, you have nothing to complain about.

I know there are weeds in the garden, but I focus on the flowers while I spend time washing dishes. I Greatly Dislike the steep stairs to the basement, but I focus on the wonderful working washing machine down there with every careful step down and it’s not so bad. I want to cry sometimes when I need a rest and the two youngest just. Won’t. Quit. Finding. Trouble. But then I remember how quickly this will be gone, and I clean up the baby powder strewn about the room (yes, AGAIN) with more patience.

It’s not easy, and it takes work, but it IS possible to not see the mud puddles.

More Side Notes:

*Extra clarification–I am NOT comparing my marriage to a muck puddle, guys. I’m not talking about marriage here, I’m talking about complaining.

*Further clarification–This post is referring to petty complaints. Naggy things women (and men, but mostly women) tend to dwell on and blame other people for while ignoring the possibility that maybe they can change their attitude and make things better.

*Addendum thought–To successfully do this, it’s essential to be properly equipped. The shoes I wore when I walked through the muck puddle were tall rubber boots. Waterproof. Leg protection. I wasn’t going through it in sandals.

Sometimes I hear animals in music. (Horses and Chickens Edition)

Horses are easy. (YouTube thinks so too.)

William Tell Overture (Rossini)

Light Cavalry Overture (Suppe)

Recently I was listening to a CD of French piano duets and one track gave me pause. “What does this remind me of?” I thought to myself, over and over. Finally, after 3 days of thinking about it and multiple listens, I had it.

A chicken running after bugs.

Jeux D’Enfants, Opus 22, No. 2, La Toupie (translation: Spinning Top) (Bizet)

I now would be very interested in discovering all the chicken pieces of the classical world.