Monday, February 28, 2011

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"It is not for you to judge another's soul. It is for you to decide who you are, not who another has been or has failed to be."
Neale Donald Walsch

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Attitude of Gratitude

876 bloggers from around the world participated in One World One Heart Giveaway. The winner could choose either 1)a set of greeting cards or 2)5x7 prints. I received an email announcing that I won. I was speechless. Who me? Must be a mistake; I reread the email. Sure enough, there was no mistake. I won. For more information about this giveaway click on button below.

After recovering from the shock of being a winner, communication occurred between the two of us last week. I claimed a set of greeting cards entitled Grand Tetons, Barn at Sunrise. Wouldn't it be grand just to look out a picture window or sit on a front porch sipping sweet tea and see this view?

At this time, I would personally like to thank Tammie Lee at Spirit Helpers. Please check out her interesting blog and etsy shop at


Icicles, Lake Michigan, 2011
Photo Credit: Joyce Meyer

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"Your desire is your prayer. Picture the fulfillment of your desire now and feel its reality and you will experience the joy of the answered prayer."
...Dr. Joseph Murphy (1898-1981) Prosperity Writer

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Goals-365 Days of Quotes and Thinking Outside the Box

"Are we to paint what's on the face,
what's inside the face,
or what's behind it?"
...Pablo Picasso

Mademoiselle I
Mademoiselle II
Photo Credit: Joyce Meyer

Friday, February 25, 2011

Pink Saturday - February 26, 2011

If you would like to participate or view other blogs who have posted for Pink Saturday click here: Thank you Beverly for being our hostess.

Ice Show, Gaylord Palms, Orlando, FL
Photo Credit: Joyce Meyer
We treated our grandchildren to this event. Gaylord Palms Hotel has an Ice Show in Orlando, Florida. We put on these blue long coats (which are returned after viewing the event) and saw amazing sculptures made out of ice. Yes, I repeat ice.
I overlooked this image for quite awhile and all of a sudden I go gee whiz this image has Pink in it and it also has a light at the end of the tunnel. So decided to post this image for a Pink Saturday event.
Think I'll go down to the lake and watch the sunset. Hopefully, you'll visit again next week.

Flowers and Birthstones for each month

Flower: Carnation
Birthstone: Garnet
Flower: Violet
Birthstone: Amethyst
Flower: Jonquil
Birthstone: Aquamarine
Flower: Sweet Pea
Birthstone: Diamond
Flower: Lily of the Valley
Birthstone: Emerald
Flower: Rose
Birthstone: Pearl
Flower: Larkspur
Birthstone: Ruby
Flower: Gladiola
Birthstone: Peridot
Flower: Aster
Birthstone: Sapphire
Flower: Calendula
Birthstone: Opal
Flower: Chrysanthemum
Birthstone: Topaz
Flower: Narcissus
Birthstone: Turquoise

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"The ship of my life may or may not be sailing on calm and amiable seas. The challenging days of my existence may or may not be bright and promising. Stormy or sunny days, glorious or lonely nights, I maintain an attitude of gratitude. If I insist on being pessimistic, there is always tomorrow.

Today I am blessed."
...Maya Angelou, excerpted from "Letters to my Daughter."

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Skywatch Friday - Season 4 - Episode 33

Howdy! If you would like to participate or view other skies from around the world click here: Thanks to all the Sky Watch team for making this event possible.

Trees saying grace to the pink skies above.
Copyright: Joyce Meyer, February 2011

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future, and accepts you today."
...Author Unknown

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Goals - 365 Days of Quotes

"The best cure for anger is delay"
...Seneca, A.D. 63

If you would like to participate or view other blogs with an Outdoor theme click here: Thank you Susan for being the hostess.

Tree Buds, February 2011.

My husband and I were on an errand. While he was in the bank, I waited outside in the car with my camera, which always travels along with us. (Except for when it doesn't. tee hee.) I saw these red branches. I saw the building was brown. Maneuvered camera and my body until what I wanted to see was in the viewfinder. Then I snapped the shot. Nature always awes me. All I did was crop this image and put my copyright on it. Then I wanted to show all my friends what I saw. Beauty exists even at the mall; if only we "see" it.

Photography has been my passion since third grade. Writing was my passion since second grade. This is my path. I just flow with it.

FYI: Bank was near the mall.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

"Come Closer to the music...

Sunday, I saw Lori Kaufman, pianist, and Ars Viva Symphony Orchestra who played Concerto No. 3 for Piano and Orchestra Allegretto, Adagio religioso, Allegro vivace; Presto. Composer: Bela Bartok Conductor: Alan Heatherington.

My music background consists of a High School Music course, which I didn't enjoy much at the time. My loss. However, these pieces were played with such passion that I will need to explore this area more.

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"Without music life would be a mistake."
...Friedrich Nietzsche

Monday, February 21, 2011

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"Judging your early artistic efforts is artist abuse."
Julia Cameron, Author, The Artist's Way

Thinking Outside the Box

Censors, February 2011

How did I do this? I just learned how to do this technique in Picasa. Ever since I owned a camera (since third grade) I visualized this image. Ta Da.

Have you ever used a paring knife to peel the skin off an apple in a circle? Did you ever use scissors to cut a circle within in circle, within a circle and paste this onto a piece of construction paper and then pull the top piece, let it go and watch it bounce up and down? Circles have always intrigued me.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Once and a while I like to try out a new recipe. Below was what we ate Saturday night for dinner. I purchased the chicken breasts at The Fresh Market. The chicken was so soft and juicy and delicious. I hope you come away thinking this meal was delightful too. Enjoy!

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with wild mushrooms and cream

1 1/2 Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved lengthwise (5 cups)
5 tbsp. Olive Oil
Kosher Salt
3 tbsp. unsalted butter
3/4 lb. wild mushrooms, such as chanterelles or hedgehogs, halved if small or cut into 1 inch wedges (about 4 1/2 cups)
1 large shallot, thinly sliced (1/2 cup)
1/4 cup dry white wine
1 cup heavy cream
Ground Pepper

Preheat oven to 450F.
Put the Brussels sprouts on a rimmed baking sheet, and drizzle with 3 tablespoons of the olive oil; toss to coat. Spread the brussels sprouts in an even layer and season generaously with salt. Roast until tender and browned, about 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and set aside.

Heat a 12-inch skillet over high heat. When the pan is hot, add 1 Tbsp. of the olive oil and 2 Tbs. of the butter. When the butter has melted, add the mushrooms in an even layer, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are golden-brown and tender and the mushroom liquid (if any) has evaporated, 5 to 8 minutes. Season to taste with salt and transfer to plate. (The recipe may be prepared to this point up to 8 hours ahead.)

Set the skillet over medium-high heat and add the remaining 1 Tbsp. olive oil and 1 Tbsp. butter. When the butter is melted, add the shallot, season with a pinch of salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender and golden, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the wine and cook until reduced by half, about 1 minute. Return the mushrooms to the pan and add the brussels sprouts and cream. Stir in a few grinds of pepper and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the cream thickens and coats the vegetables nicely, 3 to 4 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.

Credit: FINE COOKING, The Taunton Press, Inc., Newtown, CT 06470-5506, OCT/NOV 2010, page 44.

FYI: Instead of using wild mushrooms I used fresh button mushrooms. I didn't add salt because my husband is a heart patient. I added 6 finely chopped garlic cloves and a small onion to the mushrooms. I used 1/4 cup Marsala Wine because I didn't have white wine available. I used 1 cup Reddi Whipped Cream. Next time I make this recipe, I would like to add sliced green, yellow and orange peppers.

Chicken Roulade

8 ounce goat cheese, slightly softened
1 1/2 tsp. sage
1 1/2 tsp. marjoram
1 1/2 tsp. thyme
1 tsp. rosemary
1 whole boneless skinless chicken breasts, split and trimmed (1 to 1/2 lbs)
4 prosciutto slices, sliced thin
1/2 cup all purpose flour
2 eggs beaten
1 1/2 cup Panko Bread Crumbs
4 tbsp. Olive Oil

Preheat oven to 350degrees. In a small mixing bowl mix goat cheese and herbs together; set aside. Pound chicken breast to 1/2 inch thickness. Season with salt and pepper. Place 2 slices of prosciutto on each breast. Divide goat cheese mixture in half and spread on each breast. Roll up each breast and tuck in ends to secure cheese (use toothpicks if necessary_. Dredge chicken roll-ups in flour (shake off excess), then in egg and then in panko bread crumbs. Heat olive oil in a medium skillet and lightly saute each side of roll-ups until lightly brown. Transfer to a baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 165 F (juices should run clear). Remove toothpicks, if used and cut each piece in half to serve.

Copyright The Fresh Market INSPIRATIONS, February 2011

FYI: If you don't like goat cheese substitute with blue cheese or whatever cheese you like.

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"A great photograph is one that fully expresses what one feels, in the deepest sense, about what is being photographed."
...Ansel Adams
Born February 20, 1902

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"For me a painting is like a story which stimulates the imagination and draws the mind into a place filled with expectation, excitement, wonder, and pleasure."
...J. P. Hughston, Painter

Friday, February 18, 2011

Pink Saturday - February 19, 2011

If you would like to participate or view other blogs who have posted Pink Things click here: Beverly deserves big A-pluses for being the hostess week end and week out.

Candy eye Pink showed up on the grounds of the University of Chicago. This sphere and skywatch is reflected in windows framed in Pink.

Another photograph of the reflection of sphere and skywatch.

Last but not least is this close-up photograph without the sphere. Decided to do the copyright in Pink too.
I think I will go pamper myself with some Pink soap, and pull back the Pink shower curtains. I need to wash my hair and then put some styling gel that is in a dark Pink bottle. Then I'll grab a cup of hot chocolate and view other blogs who have posted their beautiful Pink items. Well, got to go now. Have a wonderful week. See you.

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"Life is an echo
What you send out
Comes back."
...Chinese Proverb

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Words on a Church Marquee

Conflict's Blessing

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"A cloud does not know why it moves in just such a direction and at such a feels an impulsion...this is the place to go now. But the sky knows the reasons and the patterns behind all clouds, and you will know too, when you lift yourself high enough to see the horizons."
...Richard Bach

Skywatch Friday - Season 4 - Episode 32

If you would like to participate or view other skies from around the world click here: Thanks to all the skywatch team!

Pink Smoke Signals
Lake Michigan, January 2011

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"Life is an opportunity, benefit from it.
Life is beauty, admire it.
Life is bliss, taste it.
Life is a dream, realize it.
Life is a challenge, meet it.
Life is a duty, complete it.
Life is a game, play it.
Life is a promise, fulfill it.
Life is sorrow, overcome it.
Life is a song, sing it.
Life is a struggle, accept it.
Life is a tragedy, confront it.
Life is an adventure, dare it.
Life is luck, make it.
Life is too precious, do not destroy it.
Life is life, fight for it."
... Mother Teresa

Bits and Pieces

After speaking to my best friend in the whole wide world, I decided to repost this image. Photo was my muse for the simple words appearing below. Thanks Elisabeth Bacon for all your help today, yesterday and all the tomorrows.

Haunting vapor
kissing lonely tree
not yet evening.
Joyce Meyer

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

2/16 - Outdoor Wednesday #110

It is in the 30s today. The Chicagoland area is experiencing a February thaw. All I could see today was mud, puddles, black snow and grey skies Rain is expected tonight which would clean the area up. Decided to post an image taken when it was frigid cold and steam floated out of sewers making it look like fog.

Blizzard, February, 2011.
Copyright Joyce Meyer

If you would like to participate or view other blogs who have posted Outdoor themes click here: Thank you Susan for being our hostess.

Thanks for stopping by. See you next week.

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"When your inner eyes open, you can find immense beauty
hidden within the inconsequential details of daily life.
When your inner ears open, you can hear the subtle,
lovely music of the universe every where you go."
...Timothy Ray Miller

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day

Open to Your Energy, February 2011
See January 22, 2011 post of Italian Woman Collection. Took base of statue and then played with image to achieve look of tulips right side and upside down.
2011 Photography goals:
Inside and Outside
Geometric Shapes
and last but not least
Seeking Light at the end of a Tunnel.
Photography goals subject to change at each moment, day-to-day, month-to-month.

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"Loving isn't just looking at each other, it's looking in the same direction."
...Antoine de Saint-Exupery, Wind, Sand and Stars 1939

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"Quality is never an accident, it is always the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction and skillful execution, it represents the wise choice of many alternatives."
...William A. Foster

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"Happiness is the meaning and purpose of life, the whole aim and end to life."

Friday, February 11, 2011

Valentine's Day Pink Saturday - February 12, 2011

Valentine's Day is just around the corner. Monday to be exact. It's time to zip up the parka, pull the leather boots on, grab the car keys and head for the mall. Why you ask? To find just the right card for my honey and sh-h-h-h-h (don't tell) and a box of Fannie May Assorted Chocolates. If I was a genie I would wiggle my nose and make it a warm Valentine's Day so we could go fishing and catch a big crappie. Get real....I am not a genie and so he is going to be stuck with a box of candy. That's the way the cookies crumble.

Here is a heart for my on-line friends. If you would like to participate or view other Pink Saturday posts click here: Thanks Beverly for being the hostess.

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

'If you deliberately plan on being less than you are capable of being,
then I warn you that you will be unhappy the rest of your life."
...Abraham H. Maslow, Psychologist and Author

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"A sad soul can kill you quicker than a germ."
...John Steinbeck

Skywatch Friday - Season 4 - Episode 31

On a very cold, windy day this winter, I went down to Lake Michigan and watched the sun go down.

If you would like to participate or view other skies from around the world click here: My hat goes off to the Skywatch Team.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"Sometimes one creates a dynamic impression by saying something, and sometimes one creates as significant an impression by remaining silent."
...Dalai Lama

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

2/09 - Outdoor Wednesday - #109

These photographs show how the blizzard effected Lake Michigan shoreline.

Mountains of ice formed where the water usually is. Notice hardly any snow is on the sand. Yet, the sand is frozen. Remember Illinois is a flat, no mountains here.

More mountains of snow and ice and blue sky.

This is what the frozen sand looked like in the area where lake water usually is. Shoreline was frozen.

I walked through drifts of snow by walking in someone else's footprints who had been there before me to get to the mountains of snow and frozen sandy beaches. Drifts were taller than my boots. It was cold. It was windy; but the sun was out. For once the sky and sea didn't merge into one color. I noticed these patterns and branch on the ground and could not resist its beauty.

This was the last image I took that day.
If you would like to see more OUTDOOR WEDNESDAY images or participate click here: Thank you Susan for being our hostess.
I hope to see you back next time. Meanwhile, take care.

Brown Butter Pumpkin Layer Cake

For the Cake
6 oz (3/4 cup) butter, more the pans
9 oz (2 cups) unbleached all-purpose flour, more for the pans
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
3/4 tsp table salt (optional-I left this out)
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1/3 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 cups pumpkin puree (I used canned pumpkin.)

For the Topping
1 1/2 Tbs. butter
2/3 c pecans
1/2 cup unsalted, raw, hulled pepitas
2 Tbs. firmly packed light brown sugar
1/4 tsp table salt, (optional-I left this out)
1 1/2 Tbs. chopped crystallized ginger

For the Frosting
4 oz (1/2 cup) butter
8 oz cream cheese, at room temperature
1/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
5 oz (1 1/4 cups) confectioner's sugar

Make the Cake
Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 350F.
Butter and flour two 9-inch round cake pans with removable bottoms (or butter two 9-inch round cake pans, line the bottoms with parchment, butter the parchment, and flour the pans).
Melt the Butter in a heavy-duty 1-quart saucepan over medium heat. Cook, swirling the pan occasionally until the butter turns a nutty golden-brown, about 4 minutes. Pour into a small bowl and let stand until cool but not set, about 15 minutes. (I just put butter in the microwave and then put it in the freezer to cool.)
In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, ginger, salt, and cloves. In a large bowl, whisk 1 1/2 cups of the pumpkin puree with the granulated sugar, brown sugar, eggs, and buttermilk until very well blended. With a rubber spatula, stir in the flour mixture until just combined. Gently whisk in the brown butter until completely incorporated. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans.
Bake the Cakes until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean, about 28 minutes. Let the cakes cool in the pans for 10 minutes. Turn the cakes out onto racks remove the pan bottoms or parchment, and cool completely.
Make the Topping melt the butter in a heavy-duty 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add the pecans and pepitas and cook until the pecans brown slightly and the pepitas begin to pop, about 2 minutes. Sprinkle in the brown sugar and salt and stir until the sugar melts and the nuts are glazed, about 2 minutes. Stir in the ginger. Remove from the heat and let the mixture cool in the skillet.
Make the Frosting melt the butter in a heavy-duty-1 quart saucepan over medium heat. Cook, swirling the pan occasionally until the butter turns a nutty golden-brown, about 4 minutes. Pour into a small bowl and let stand until the solids settle at the bottom of the bowl about 5 minutes. Carefully transfer the bowl to the freezer and chill until just firm, about 18 minutes. Using a spoon, carefull scrape the butter from bowl, leaving the browned solids at the bottom; discard the solids. (Again, I just put butter into microwave and then freezer.)
Using an Electric Mixer, beat the butter, cream cheese, and brown sugar on medium high speed until light in color and the brown sugar has dissolved, 2 minutes. Gradually beat in the confectioners' sugar and continue beating until fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes.
Assemble the Cake, put one cake layer on a cake plate. Spread 1/2 cup of the frosting on the layer. Sprinkle 1/2 cup of the nut mixture over the frosting and top with the second layer. Frost the top and sides of the cake with the remaining frosting. Arrange the remaining topping in a ring 1 1/2 inches in from the edge of the cake.
Serve immediately or cover with a cake dome and refrigerate for up to 2 days. Serve at room temperature.
Serves: 8 to 12 people
Fine Cooking, The Taunton Press, Inc. Newtown, CT 06470-5506, Oct/Nov 2010 No. 107, pages 80 & 81, Cover Recipe.

FYI: Here is recipe for making the Pumpkin Puree
For the Puree
2 tsp. vegetable oil
1 medium-large Sugar Pie pumpkin, cut in half from stem to bottom and seeded.
Make the Pumpkin Puree, position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 350F. Brush a 9x13 inch baking dish with the oil. Put the pumpkin halves in the dish cut side down and bake until tender when pierced with a fork, about 45 minutes. Let cool. Peel the pumkin and puree the flesh in a food processor until smooth. You'll need 1 1/2 cups of the puree for the cake. (You can make the puree up to 2 days ahead. Refrigerate or freeze any remaining puree for another use.

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"Live with intention. Walk to the edge. Listen hard. Practice wellness. Play with abandon. Laugh. Choose with no regret. Appreciate your friends. Continue to learn. Do what you love. Live as if this is all there is. "
...Mary Anne Radmacher

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"Notice that the stiffest tree is most easily cracked,
while the bamboo or willow survives by bending
with the wind."
...Bruce Lee

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"Writing a novel is not merely going on a shopping expedition
across the border to an unreal land;
it is hours and years spent in the factories, the streets,
the cathedrals of the imagination."
...Janet Frame
New Zealand Author

Friday, February 4, 2011

Pink Saturday - February 5, 2011

Happy Pink Saturday, Ladies and Gentlemen! I decided to post this Pink entrance door with reflections in windows. Sweet!

Abstract, Doorway #1, February 2011.

Abstract, Doorway #2, February 2011.

If you would like to participate or view other blogs who have posted Pink items click here: Thank you Beverly for being the hostess.
Since you stopped by, please leave a comment, become a follower and do come back to visit. See you next time.

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"We are one, after all, you and I,
together we suffer, together exist.
And forever we recreate each other."
...Teilhard de Chardin

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Skywatch Friday - Season 4, Episode 30

Two nights ago, we had high winds of 40 to 60 MPH, we heard thunder and saw lightning while it was snowing. Yesterday, we had white out conditions plus it kept snowing, and snowed some more and then some more snow came. Gurnee reported 24 inches, while O'Hare Airport had only 20 inches and other Chicagoland areas had only 16 inches of snow.

Today, it was sunny and the temperatures reached 25 degrees; so I grabbed my camera and headed for Lake Michigan. I saw mountains of frozen water; rocks and ice thrown helter skelter on the beach, even the sand was frozen. I walked in footprints of snow made by someone that walked the path before me. I kept my fingers and toes crossed that I would not fall; I didn't. What an adventure I had today down at the beach.

Come along and see what I saw. In the next few days I will post what the sand looked like and what frozen mountains of water looks like but here is a sky shot.

If you would like to participate or view other skies from around the world please click here: Thanks to the skywatch team for all their hard work to make this season and episode possible.

See you next week. Meanwhile, take care.

Front part of image is not the beach, it is frozen lake water.

Shadow, Blizzard February 3, 2011, Lake Michigan lakefront

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"Develop interest in life as you see it;
in people, things, literature, music---
the world is so rich , simply throbbing
with rich treasures, beautiful souls
and interesting people. Forget yourself."
...Henry Miller

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Early Spring?

Happy Ground Hog's Day! Click here to see what the ground hog says:

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"And by the way , everything in life is writable
if you have the outgoing guts to do it,
and the imagination to improvise.
The worst enemy is self-doubt."
...Sylvia Plath (1932-1963)

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

2/02 - Outdoor Wednesday #108

Howdy folks! If you would like to participate or view Outdoor Wednesday themes click here: Thank you Susan for being the hostess.

Icicles, Chicagoland Area, January-2011.
Happy Ground Hog's Day everyone. See you next week.

Goals-365 Days of Quotes

"In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks."
...John Muir