Wednesday, May 31, 2023


This is the beginning of a new day.  You have been given this day to use as you will.  You can waste it or use it for good.  What you do today is important because you are exchanging a day of your life for it.  When tomorrow comes, this day will be gone forever.  In its place is something that you have left behind.  Let it be something good.  

~Author Unknown ~

(Photo taken overlooking Monterey Bay from Cannery Row, California, in 2009.)

Tuesday, May 30, 2023


We had over-ripe bananas in the fruit bowl so I decided to make this recipe today.  I found it at YouTube and the video host goes by the name of Baked Like A Pro.  You can find the link here.

Banana Bread

Ingredients are also provided in metric at the video site, if you live anywhere other than the States.

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup melted butter, salted or unsalted
1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 large ripe bananas
2 large eggs, slightly beaten
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup chopped walnuts (mine were in halves and I just left them that way)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  

Pre-grease your loaf pan.

In a medium-sized bowl, mash your bananas thoroughly with a fork, or you can use a potato masher as was done in the video.  This recipe is very easy and is mixed by hand, not an electric mixer.

Add the melted butter, vanilla extract and beaten eggs.  Mix thoroughly after each addition. 

Next you will be mixing in the flour.  The batter will seem a bit thick at this point but it gets less so after adding all the ingredients.

The sugar goes in next and then the salt, baking powder and cinnamon.  Mix in after each addition.  

Lastly fold in the cup of walnuts, remembering to save a few halves for the top of the batter before putting into the oven.

Put the batter into your pre-greased loaf pan.  The one used in the video was 8 x 5 - 4 x 5 - 2 x 5.  Top with the walnut halves.

Put in the pre-heated 350 degree F. oven for 50 minutes.

Test to see if it is done by using a toothpick in the center.  If it comes out dry it should be done.  If batter is stuck to the toothpick then you need to put it in again until it is cooked all the way through.  Mine took longer than the recipe states.  

I had to put it back in the oven for 15 minutes longer (my oven runs on the cooler side, even though I preheated it to 355 deg. F. 

I thought it came out a bit too dark, but my dear other half liked it this way and he is very honest in his assessments.  He has had several slices since I cooked it and likes it cold with a pat of butter.  Next time I will try to adjust to get it to how I think it should be, maybe use two smaller pans.  It tasted great and that's the main thing.

I made this recipe before we came down with the virus.  Thank you to each of you who left get-well messages.  They were very comforting and much appreciated.  I will be slow on catching up with you all but hope to do that this coming week.

Thanks for visiting and I hope your day is a great one.

Tuesday, May 23, 2023


 Our son and daughter-in-law came to my rescue today for an easy, fast but very cute post.  This photo is theirs.  They were adding books to the Little Lending Library on their walk, and the sweetie at the bottom of the photo popped through the bushes, to wag his tail and say hello.  Sweetie’s human also said hello nearby.  Their garden is right next to the walking path, and he came over to retrieve his darling pup.  He is the person who built the library and supplied it with books.  His little dog is called Cowboy.  Applauding them both for their community spirit and kindness, which includes our son and daughter-in-law for the same, plus a big thank for letting me share their photo today.

I am still not quite there for putting a longer post together, or visiting you all.  Soon I hope!  Thank you from both of us for your well-wishes here, texting and emails.  I will answer soon.  Plodding along we are and heading in the right direction, but still feel the need to take the rest of the week off. 

Monday, May 22, 2023


I found today's recipe at Le Creme de la Crumb and you can find the original recipe at this link.  Author is Tiffany.

Described as "Easy, healthy with a sweet and spicy sauce and pineapple, all made in one pan with minimal clean up."  You can read Tiffany's tips at the link above, to see her photos and many delicious recipes.

From prep to table: 25 minutes

Baked Thai Pineapple Salmon in Foil 

Serves 6

Approximate Calories per serving: 172

1 large salmon fillet

Salt and pepper - to taste

½ cup sweet chili sauce

4 tablespoons hoisin sauce

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

1 can pineapple slices - (drained except for ¼ cup of juice)

3 tablespoons peanuts - roughly chopped

cilantro - roughly chopped

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. 

Line a baking sheet with nonstick foil, big enough that you can enclose the salmon.

Lay salmon in the center and season with salt and pepper. Slip pineapple slices underneath the edges of the salmon.

Whisk together sweet chili sauce, hoisin sauce, rice vinegar, and 1/4 cup pineapple juice. 

Pour mixture over salmon. 

Fold edges of foil around the salmon.

Bake for 15 minutes. Pull back the edges of the foil to expose the salmon, switch to broil and cook another 5-10 minutes until edges just barely begin to blacken.

Sprinkle chopped cilantro and peanuts over the top and serve.

Tiffany’s Note:

Add a drizzle of sriracha sauce for a spicy kick and serve over steamed white rice. 

Changes I made:

I didn’t have any cilantro so I used diced green onions instead.  If we had a chance to go to our Asian supermarket, I would get Thai Basil instead of the cilantro.  

I also sprinkled dried chili flakes on top, along with the chopped peanuts.  

I didn’t have any sliced pineapple and used chunks.  I would have preferred the sliced and will make sure I have those in stock next time.

Jasmine rice was a very nice side to go with this recipe. Everything seemed to work together perfectly.  

One of us is not a salmon fan.  I cooked a piece of cod in its own foil packet and placed it next to the salmon, using the same instructions.  We tried to get the fish pieces the same size.  (There is a delicious looking sweet and sour chicken recipe at this link for non fish eaters. Definitely going to give that a try next time.)

Full addy for the original recipe if you prefer to copy and paste rather than use the links:

That's all I can think of for this recipe.  If you have any questions let me know and I'll do my best to answer them.

Saturday, May 20, 2023


Thank you for all the sweet, kind and caring comments you have left regarding Gregg and I having Covid, either here or through email.   Many of you have had it too and have offered excellent advice.  We have both appreciated this very much.  

"I believe that we are here for each other, not against each other.  Everything comes from an understanding that you are a gift in my life - whoever you are, whatever our differences."

Henry John Deutschendorf Jr. (December 31, 1943 – October 12, 1997), known professionally as John Denver, was an American guitarist, singer, composer, actor, humanitarian, and environmentalist.  He is known for popularizing acoustic folk music in the 1970s as part of the ongoing singer-songwriter movement of the mid-to-late 20th century. Denver is widely recognized as a cultural icon of the American West.

Wednesday, May 17, 2023


 I am taking a couple of days off.  I have left my comments on but will be very slow answering them.  However, I will answer all eventually.  Luckily I had a few posts already done and scheduled, which included this coming Saturday and Monday posts.  Hopefully I will be feeling better by next Tuesday, but if you don't see anything then, you'll know I am just resting up.  Gregg and I have Covid but we are being well taken care of.

We are looking across land that once belonged to the Phillips Family, dating back to about 1798.  It is part of The Waterford Foundation and a self-guided tour can be found here.

According to what I read on one of the signs, it said those line of trees are the Osage orange (also called hedgeapple) which were planted by farmers to create a natural hedge.  The signs I have included below may be difficult to read even when enlarged, so I will repeat the info as I go along, as well as adding other information I found, plus links if interested.  This is what an Osage orange looks like (all photos showing the fruits, including the bow, were found online).

When I read about them, I found that Native American tribes in the Plains quickly discovered that its strong yet flexible wood made superior-quality bows.  According to legend, a bow made from the Osage orange was worth as much as a horse and blanket for Native American traders.  Shown in the photo is obviously a modern-day one but made with that particular wood.
The fruits are 4 to 5 inches in diameter.  The surface is deeply grooved and rough, covered in wiry hairs.  Underneath the ridged surface, the flesh is dense, cream-colored to pale green, and contains 200 to 300 oblong, light brown, edible seeds. When the flesh is sliced, it releases a sticky, white liquid that can be irritating to the skin and may cause a rash. 
As read: "Osage oranges have a green, bitter flavor with a hint of cucumber and a fruity, citrus-like aroma. The flavor is generally unpleasant, unpalatable, and some may feel ill after ingesting the bitter fruit, causing many to deem it inedible." There is more here.
One last bit of information, its wood withstands rot and decay, making them ideal for fence posts. After the widespread introduction of barbed wire fencing, Osage orange remained the go-to tree for fencing use, but this time it was for the rot-resistant wood that could be fashioned into fence posts to hold the newly invented barbed wire. And my snowball rolling down hill is taking effect because I also found this interesting page on the history of barbed wire.  There is none used for fence posts showing the barbed wire below.  Well, enough of the Osage orange!
The Phillips family had an annual yield of 500 bushels of wheat, 400 lbs. of butter, 65 lbs. of wool and 60 lbs. of honey and beeswax.

Thomas and Rachel Phillips were Quakers and were against slavery and secession, which in this case meant the withdrawal of eleven southern states from the Union in 1860, leading to the Civil War.  More history on that subject can be found at this website.  The following photo is cropped from the one above.  It shows some of the artifacts found.
One of the facts I found very interesting was that the Phillips Farm is "a registered Monarch waystation.  Monarchs on their annual migration to and from Mexico, find nectar and host plants here.  Bees also thrive and produce honey just as they did centuries ago" and "Today, more than 200 years after Thomas Phillips began farming here, his practices of haymaking and beekeeping, continue on the farm."
Unfortunately, I didn't see the Belted Kingfisher.  There was no path or gateway that we could see. The Kingfishers and other birds can no doubt be seen along the creek amongst the trees.  (I found out later there is a trail that can be taken.)
I found the above photo at

Others mentioned were the Eastern Bluebird, the Great Blue Heron, Red-winged Blackbird and the Red-Tailed Hawk.

That's all for today.  I have another post after this, of Waterford Village.  It will be my last from our trip along the turnpike, and will be posted next week.

Tuesday, May 16, 2023


Under the weather as we both have Covid.  I have left the comments on but it could be a while before I return any visits.  We are not feeling that great but it is always a joy to read them and thank you in advance.  It came as a bit of a shock as the cases are very low in our area.  Well, there you go, you can't take anything for granted.  

I scheduled a couple of posts before I got sick, for Wednesday and Thursday.

Now to continue with our trip along the SnickersvilleTurnpike.

This is for those interested in the history of the American Civil War.
As we continued our drive, we came across an interesting memorial.  It is for the 1st Massachusetts Cavalry Monument, the Battle of Aldie.  
As peaceful and as beautiful as this area is, very intense battles during the Civil War were fought along the turnpike.  At this link you will be able to read more information. The memorial is located on the Snickersville Turnpike, Route 734 near Route 650, Aldie, Virginia 20105.  You will find it on the right when traveling north.  The survivors erected a monument to mark the spot where the heaviest fighting took place, on a sharp curve in the road north of Aldie.
The above marker will be easier to read if you enlarge the photo...
and names are engraved on the side.
Whenever we come across these memorials, we find ourselves being very reflective.  
Will mankind ever be free of these conflicts?  I live in hope that the more people study history, perhaps enough seeds will be sown for the future.  It certainly has been a very long road.
The property behind the wall is part of the Furr Farm built in 1798.  It bore witness to the battle on June 17th, 1863.  The farm is privately owned but you can see many photos of the outside and inside if you go here.  It's like stepping back in time.

We continued on with our journey.  There will be two more posts after this.

 The sun is shining and it is quite warm.  I hope you are having the same kind of weather in your part of the world.  Thanks for looking. 

Monday, May 15, 2023


No link this week, as this is very simple. I wanted something light for supper. I have seen avocado toast with various toppings for a while now. This is what I have been putting together lately. 

1/2 to 1 avocado

1 scant teaspoon olive oil

1 slice of wheat bread 

(or another favorite) 

1 small sliced tomato

Toasted Sesame Seeds

In a small bowl scoop out the avocado with a spoon and mash with a fork.  Meanwhile, toast your bread.  Spread the avocado over toast. Drizzle with olive oil.  Add the sliced tomato on the top. Sprinkle with desired amount of sesame seeds.  

Serve immediately and enjoy!


I have only just started eating avocado toast.  We usually share an avocado, putting half in a small dish, removing the seed and adding a dash or two of Worcestershire Sauce to each avocado half in the well left by the seed.  

The other way we enjoy is to peel and cube the avocado and add to a salad.  

For the toast I used Dave's Killer Bread - 21 Whole Grain. My son suggested it.  I had a visceral reaction to the name, but he said I shouldn't let that put me off, that it was excellent bread.  There is an interesting story of how this company came to be, as I found out later.  You can read all about it at their website here. They are called a second-chance company and give jobs to people who have served time in prison.  As you read the info you will see how that came about too.

Toppings could be varied and I thought a sliced, hard-boiled egg, or a poached egg, would be nice on the top.

Maybe a drop or two of lemon juice mixed either into the avocado or on top.

A sprinkle of chili flakes would give them a bit of a zip.

If you have any other ideas, perhaps you can leave them in a comment.  

That's about it for this one.

Saturday, May 13, 2023


 Tomorrow we celebrate Mother's Day here in the States. I am dedicating this to my dear Mum, and to all mothers out there.  My dedication is also for those dear mothers across the species, as you will see below.

And so, for tomorrow, and...

These pictures are from a while ago, taken at Big Meadows along Skyline Drive.

Have a wonderful day everyone and as always, thanks for stopping by.

Friday, May 12, 2023


Continuing from yesterday’s post here, and thanks to Ginny’s question in her comment the same day, and also Linda's comment when she replied to her question saying, "It is named for the town of Snickersville, which is now Bluemont. That and Snickers Gap were named for a Mr. Snickers who operated a ferry, probably across the Shenandoah." Thank you ladies!  I searched online to learn that the village of Snickersville was named after Captain Edward Snickers who ran a ferry across the nearby Shenandoah River in the 1760’s. It grew quickly, and in the 1840's a General Store opened for business to serve the local population and travelers.  I am assuming the turnpike was also named after him. You can read the full history at this link
I am sharing a few of the properties we saw.
We passed several wineries.   I have noticed more of them over the last few years, but wine has been produced in Virginia as early as the 17th century.  
This was the only mural I saw that day.

There are also very old-looking log cabins still standing.  
Another view of the one above.
And then there are places such as the following.

All different styles of architecture.

I enjoyed looking at the pretty homes, including the old log cabins and think of how it must have been for them way back when.  Such stories those old walls could tell.

I still have photos to share from our mini road trip.  More next time!