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I don't know about the rest of you, but I think this is the best new thing to come along in years.  This is one “out with the old, in with the new” idea that got it right! It’s so much easier to navigate than the old food pyramid – so visual, just one look and you know what you should be eating.  Now I’m just waiting for them to come out with plates that actually look like this – hey, I would buy them, especially if they are made of great looking pottery with maybe snazzy veggie/animal illustrations around the edge.

It’s so easy, even for little children, to see what portion sizes should be.  Kudos on this one, Department of Agriculture, talk about a good thing…

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I had a mother that adored rhubarb.  She grew her own and fed the tart concoction to me as a child and I absolutely hated it.  She had friends that were older, and they all loved it as well, so I grew up thinking it was something old women ate.   I avoided it like the plague for years, and finally decided that it was pretty good in a strawberry rhubarb pie, but even now, I never cook it. 

For some reason this week, I decided I wanted to try and make stewed rhubarb like she used to.  Hubby bought me several stalks at the farmer’s market, it cost $5.00 for those stalks, and I’m thinking, “this better be worth it.”  So then I picked up a quart of strawberries, and last night I peeled the strings away like she always did, cut it into chunks, put it on the stove with just a few tablespoons of water and the strawberries and a pinch of salt and simmered it on low for about ten minutes.  Then I put in two cups of Splenda, no way was I going to put in sugar, after all rhubarb is only 25 calories per cup, I had a good thing going, didn’t want to amp the calories with real sugar.

I always have Edy’s Slow Churned Sugar Free (80 calorie) Ice Cream in the freezer.  I scooped out the ice cream, put it in a dish and poured the warm rhubarb strawberry mixture over the top.  Oh-my-GAWD, it was incredible!

I have a lot left, so this morning I added the chilled rhubarb to my cottage cheese berry concoction, and later on I’m going to make a diet version of Rhubarb Fool, layers of rhubarb and whipped cream Cool Whip.

You might want to rethink rhubarb, too.  Martha Stewart has some yummy looking recipes on her website.  Check them out here…

Mother was also a fan of gooseberries, we had gooseberry bushes, and those things were the most sour fruit I ever put in my mouth.  But now that I’ve “found” rhubarb, I’m thinking that I should give gooseberries a try, if I can ever find them again.  Who knows, Mikey might like those, too! 

Simple food:  For breakfast, a scoop of cottage cheese, blackberries, raspberries and blueberries, all mixed together with a packet of Splenda.  Thanks Linds for telling me to do this.  Her recipe calls for honey and almonds, all layered in a parfait glass.

Oatmeal made from old-fashioned oats, with two teaspoons of cocoa stirred in before it’s cooked.

Iced tea with a wedge of orange, always reminds me of Mother.

Smells:  Dove Body Mist, Pomegranate & Lemon Verbena

Dial Body Wash, Spring Water

Sounds:  Smooth Jazz from Monterey Bay, NPR Classical Music, The waterfall in my garden

Flowers:  Invincibelle, a new variety of hydrangea, Candy Corn Plant, just for fun

Books:  I just finished Hissy Fit by Mary Kay Andrews – great summer read.  If you’re not familiar with this author, you’re missing out – All of her books are so much fun, Savannah Blue, Savannah Breeze, The Fixer Upper to name a few, check her out.  Deanna and I both really enjoy her…

Robyn Carr – oh, so good, especially the entire Virgin River Series.  Yep, Deanna and I have read all of these also, fifteen books in this series.  Start with book one, Virgin River and you will quickly be enchanted with the folksy people that live in Virgin River.  Awesome reads…

Kristin Hannah and Rachel Gibson are also on my favorites list this summer.  I bought an iPad 2 a couple of months ago, it’s just the most fantastic computer, ever!  The iBook reader is seriously to-die-for, read all about it here

But, of course, my favorite thing this summer is anything having to do with Abby.  Lindsay is so good about letting me know what cute things she is doing, constantly sending us pictures, she’s an amazing mother.

And that’s what I’m up to this summer, I hope all of you are enjoying your lazy days as much as me….

~ jan

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abtpc6YIKES

I always liked Dyan Cannon, I thought she was so beautiful, loved the hair, the laugh, the smile, but lord help, what has this woman done to herself?

Here we go again with the duck lips, the cosmetic surgery the extreme dieting.  This woman is seventy-four years old and she looks like a train wreck.  And here I go again, on that soapbox, ranting about aging in America.  Why do women feel the need to try and look young, when they clearly can’t pull it off?  Why can’t we be okay with our bodies as we age?  Why can’t we embrace our sags and bags, instead of pulling and pinching and tucking and ultimately looking ridiculous instead of natural?

A few years ago, I saw Miss Cannon on a talk show and they were doing a cooking demonstration, making mashed potatoes, and the host could no way get her to take even one bite of those potatoes.  She was horrified, saying they would make her fat.  Well, lady, it’s not too late, you could use a few potatoes to plump up that body a bit.  As for the lips, oh never mind….

Oh, I know I must bore all of you with my Grammie stories, but everything she does is just still so brand new to me.

Last weekend, I was talking to Ryan, and I could hear Abby in the background.  She bumped her head, and Ryan said to her, “Abby, did you hurt yourself?”

And this sweet little voice, said crystal clear, “No, I’m fine.”  Oh, it was just so amazing to hear her answer a direct question like that.  Such a thrill…

I’ll try to hold it down, ladies, seriously I will.  But, just think, it won’t be long now until we can have actual phone conversations.  They will probably go something like this.

Me:  “Hi Abby, what’s going on?”

Abby:  “Where’s Bampa?” 

Yep, that’s probably what will happen.  *sigh*

VPL

Okay, I admit it, I was reading a book, they were talking about VPL, and I was clueless. So I looked it up in the urban dictionary and found out that it means "visible panty lines," so now i'm informed. Do I care, is it important in the overall scheme of things, do I really give a rats hiney about VPL at my age.

Of course not, I could care less, I'm just sayin...