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Pressure Cooker Beans with Flavor!

I love my pressure cooker. Instead of hours to cook beans it take just a few minutes. But as much as I love the convenience I have a big complaint about the taste. Toooooo bland! According to the “experts” you are NOT supposed to add salt of herbs to the pot when you pressure cook beans. This means that you end up cooking them in plan old water with a little oil to keep the foam down. When they come out ...

Travel Theme – Multiples

These are my photos for Ailsa’s Travel  Theme this week. They are all “Multiples” of one kind or another I found the stones outside the lower reception area of the Mandalay Bay Hotel in Las Vegas, they had a lot of very interesting objects set in and around the hotel. The scallops were part of the very enjoyable lunch we had at the Portxiol Hotel in Majorca. The hotel is set in a stunning location by the harbour, just outside Palma. The shoes – ...

One Ring to Rule them All

People who know me also know that I’m health conscious. I exercise 6 days a week and usually eat a low fat/ high fiber diet.  However, last weekend my husband and I decided to take a day off from our good behaviors.  This is when I suddenly discovered the magical powers of onion rings. First of all, onion rings are naturally formed in the shape of a circle: the symbol of perfection.  It shows the past connecting with the future.  Like ...

Weekly Photo Challenge: Free Spirit…

“Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. To keep our faces toward change and behave like free spirits in the presence of fate is strength undefeatable.” Helen Keller Weekly Photo Challenge: Free Spirit… Overlook Mt views from the top Weekly Photo Challenge: Free Spirit… The trail sign to Overlook Mt Weekly Photo Challenge: Free Spirit…  A hiker atop Overlook Mountain Weekly Photo Challenge: Free Spirit… Ruins of old luxury Hotel along the path. Recently, I joined  other hiking enthusiasts to climb up Overlook Mountain ...

Molho de Piri Piri ~ Portuguese Piri Piri Sauce

A few years ago, shortly after we moved to Portugal, we discovered a gift on our doorstep – an old coffee jar containing a strange liquid. “What on earth is it?” I asked Mr. Piglet as I opened the jar to smell its contents. “Smells interesting” I proffered the jar to Mr. Piglet for his opinion. He sniffed, then snorted and finally echoed my comment “What on earth is it?” I don’t “do” snails but I did tentatively taste the liquid; it was delicious, ...

Indulge – Weekly Photo Challenge

My first thoughts were of chocolate or a long laze in a bath full of soft scented bubbles…… Then I looked through my photographs to see what indulgences I could find there and it’s not always what you have in mind that jumps out at you from the screen.  So, here are my photos for this week: I love Sushi and I have never seen so much in one place at one time……. I had dreamed of going to Egypt ever since my first ...

Lucie, For You

The Trifextra Challenge this weekend is to write 33 words inspired by this song from Mick Jagger and the Stones with whom he Rolls: *** We were wild, dangerous and fierce— oblivious, yet hell-bent on blighting the world. It was wicked-good fun while you lasted. In spite of the guilt-searing pain, I am damned pleased to meet you.

On Those Tolkien Prototypes

I remember as a kid reading “Mother Goose” and fantasizing about weird critters and why that woman had so many kids that lived in a shoe.  My Mom gave me art books for entertainment in the gravel road isolation of rural Mississippi, where AM radio was unreliable. I didn’t realize my favorite painting “Starry Night” was by one of the greatest painters of all time, Vincent Van Gogh. "The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug" Therefore, I had an idea of “elf,” “dragon,” ...

Fun Flower Facts: Glory in the Snow (Chionodoxa)

Can’t wait for the spring flowers to bloom? You may not have to wait much longer, if you have glory in the snow in your garden! Glory in the Snow (Chionodoxa) is one of the earliest blooming flowers in the spring and they will even bloom through the snow, hence the name. Glory in the snow is a bulbous plant that produces small, dainty star-shaped flowers. Blue is the most common colour, but some are available in pink and white, with ...

PART 2: the finale - christmas camping - suwannee to caverns

~i apologize if i haven't made it over to your place yet. if you read my previous post, you already know that things have been pretty hectic... with my youngest son travis moving in with us, looking for work, and not having his own transportation. so with work, home, and everything in between, i haven't had too much ME time. BUT the REALLY good news is that travis may have found a job! yay! i dropped him off earlier this morning at a (hopefully) possible employer! we'll ...

Neutral with a Pop!

When does an interior designer turn into a kid in a candy store? When she walks into a room full of fabric swatches! Selecting fabrics and putting together a design color board for clients is one of my favorite things to do. It’s almost like being a child creating the perfect ice cream sundae…picking the right flavors, adding sprinkles, syrups, whip cream and then finishing it all off with a cherry on top. Of course, instead of ice cream and confections, ...

Peculiar Picture #10

I’ve become indifferent to many of the hundreds of illustrations I’ve painted over the years. Not so with this picture. In fact, I can’t tell you if it’s an illustration or a painting. It’s just one of my favorites. I was experimenting with fast-drying acrylic paint after years of using oils. I wanted to see if I could build up glazes like Titian and Rembrandt without waiting a week for each layer of paint to dry. Clients don’t like waiting for ...

How Relevant Is Creativity

How relevant is creativity to you? There is so much talk about creativity these days, it has become the latest buzz word. First, everyone was on about innovation and now they are swinging the creativity axe. Some businesses are even beginning to have creative think tanks and the more forward thinking ones are scheduling time for honing creativity skills, as they realize that a. Creativity drives Innovation – and b. That to keep up commercially these days requires Innovation in a market that is ...

8 Eco-Friendly Container Ideas for Starting Seeds Indoors

Starting seeds indoors is a fun, low-cost and rewarding activity that you can do with kids. All you need is some soil, seeds and containers. You can purchase all of those materials at your local garden centre, but you can also save money and help the environment by transforming everyday household items into potting containers. If you look around, the possibilities are endless. Just about anything can be made into a container, but make sure it’s clean and poked with some ...

Artist’s Studio

My new artist’s studio is is finally setup! Your artist’s studio is the hub of your creative endeavors. It is your home away from home. Often it is the home of your heart. An ...

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7 Questions With an Author: Frank Viola

Frank is a highly-sought speaker and an incredibly prolific writer with 16 published books so far. His web blog frankviola.org is one of the Top 10 Christian blogs on the Internet. His latest work is a ...

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Guest Post: Bulb Flower Gardens

The fondest experience for any gardener is the sight of the first spring flowers peeking through the last snow of winter. These spring flowers have been long seen as a sign of new life. Whether ...

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Haiku: The First Day Of Spring…

Today is Thursday March 20th, the first, official day of spring! The buds start to peak through; crocuses, forget-me-nots, blossoming cherry trees herald the awakening of a new day. Spring has sprung and we can ...

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A Good Master And A Greater Revelation

Jason Clark is a singer/songwriter, author, speaker, and pastor. Jason’s passion is to know the love of God more each day. He lives to see a generation step into their identity as sons and daughters ...

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The Kid Got to Me

When she told me that she wanted to write books I knew that she had suffered. Only the scarred would dare to write, to make sense of, or at least to look at, the entrails ...

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Run Like Hell!

Humans can be porcupinish in nature. You get too close and their adrenaline kicks in, triggering a panicky spray of barbed quills, homing in on your most vulnerable places, usually the face and eyes. And why ...

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Afterlife of the Viking

Shevata leaned back on the armrest of the obsidian throne. “Zermon, no more savages!” “I’ll remind you that you released the last one?” Zermon rolled his eyes looking over a short man brought before ...

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Defining Moment 1985

One strong arm robbery (no weapons) turned into 2 when the take on the first was too light. The 2nd got us caught. I was driving, and we were about to pull away but a ...

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Freebie Friday: Free April 2014 Desktop Calendar Wallpaper!

While for some of us it’s hard to believe, Spring really is on it’s way! Here in Edmonton we are looking forward to double digit temps next week! Exciting! To help celebrate Springs arrival here are ...

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Peer support through blogging

One of my reasons for returning to study is that I would like to set up an organisation whose sole purpose is peer support for adults (both women and men) who experienced abuse as a ...

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Acknowledging the pain of others

People like me, who write about their experiences of child sexual abuse, do not intentionally set out to cause other people pain. Unfortunately, however, we do. When we are lucky enough to have people ...

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How to Make a Terrarium

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Terrariums have become the hottest trend in gardening in recent years. A terranium is basically a glass container filled with soil, moss and other plants to create a mini-ecosystem or garden. They are super easy to take care of and require minimal maintenance. As well, they don’t require a lot of light or water. They …

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Reintroducing My “For Fun” Page

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How do you define fun? I took this picture during a motorcyclists’ convention in Sarasota. Hubby Gary owned a motorcycle before I knew him, and he has told me at least one tale about it that I won’t repeat in polite company (let alone in my blog). And the mother of a friend of mine enjoyed …

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Flying A Kite At The Beach

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It has been a cloudy few days punctuated with some clear, cool days. Fall weather is wonderful. Colorful leaves should be everywhere in a few days. We are barely in the 50′s this morning. I walked the boardwalk yesterday and there were some kite flyers on the beach. There are still plenty of folks hanging out …

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Best Plants for Dorm Rooms

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Life as a student can be stressful, particularly if they are living on their own. Dorms are often small and cramped. But growing plants in the dorm rooms can help make the school year more pleasant. Plants add life and positive energy to any space, including small spaces. Plants can improve the air quality, especially …

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The $5.37 “Caption This” Contest: Vol. 9

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Welcome to another edition of the lowest-cash-award-for-a-photo-caption-contest on the Internet, the $5.37 Caption This Contest! Thanks to everyone who entered the most recent iteration of the contest last week. There were so many AWESOME entries this time, that I couldn’t decide on one myself. So I contacted my local congressional representative who quickly impaneled an independent 50-person task force, which …

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Online Gaming and Child Abuse

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When is Online Gaming Child Abuse? When folks think of child abuse and neglect, they tend to think of the extreme examples that hit the news. Toddlers left in rooms unattended for hours or days, teens locked in closets or physically and sexually abused, children left to fend for themselves. But there’s another face of child …

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