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Simple Fun

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  • Sheryl Simons
    The Simple Life By Sheryl Simons The happier you are with the simple things, the easier it is to be happy. The true miracle is not walking on water or
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 19, 2007
      The Simple Life
      By Sheryl Simons

      "The happier you are with the simple things, the easier it is to be

      "The true miracle is not walking on water or walking in air, but
      simply walking on this earth." ~~Thich Nhat Hanh

      ~Simple Fun~

      The warmer (not warm yet) weather has us in the mood for
      spring. But just as soon as we say "no more snow days" we will have
      another blast of winter. We really got lambasted last week, but now
      the rain is melting it quick. We may have huge banks of snow along
      the roadways, but there are lots of bare patches in the fields. Deer
      are on the move again, squirrels are gathering salt along the road
      edges, and bald eagles are scavenging winter meals before spring
      beings small animals out in abundance.
      Seeds are sprouting in windowsills, and spring bulbs won't be
      far behind. Can you wait to see the bulbs that you planted last fall
      come to brilliant bloom in that new flower bed? Right near my
      greenhouse I dug a late fall bed and filled it with nice plump bulbs,
      Muscari (grape Hyacinth) and daffodils and several shades of tulips.
      It should bring a bright spot to that area of the yard.
      I get a lot of people asking about tulips in the spring.
      They are looking for alliums, tulips, hyacinths to plant. I hate to
      tell them, but these are all planted in the fall. They must have the
      winter cold to bring on the spring blooms. Sometimes you can find
      plants that were forced in winter, that are fading and being sold
      cheap in the late spring. There are no guarantees on these, but some
      friends of mine swear that they will come back. Last year, for the
      first time, I had an Easter Lilly bloom. It's been several years
      since I planted it, but it finally gathered enough strength to come
      back. Who knows? Maybe it will visit me each year now.
      What kind of garden would you like? It's too late to plant
      bulbs, but fingering through magazines, seed catalogs, or the
      internet will give you some ideas. Would you like paths or one small
      garden area? Or, would you like a big open space of grass with edges
      of flowers and plants? One thing you don't want to do is just plunk
      plants anywhere in the yard. This is much too hard to take care of.
      One man I talked to was always complaining that his wife was mowing
      his plants. When I saw his yard, I could see why! There were plants
      everywhere, like a jumbled mess. I'd have been tempted to mow them
      all and start over! Keep plants in a group or on the edge. Keep
      edges easy to mow around. Edging makes it easy to define flower beds
      from grass, and landscape fabric around plants makes it easier to
      keep weeds down. There is now a spray that you can use to clean
      grass out of walkways and between stepping stones.
      If you have a garden full of weeds, sometimes it's easier to
      take the plants out, and start all over with landscape fabric and re-
      plant the plants. Just keep them in the shade while you are working,
      or even put them in a tub with an inch or so of water. When you are
      all done, cover with some mulch and you will only have a weed or two
      each year!

      Duct Tape or a Nail?
      A man dies and goes to heaven. Of course, St. Peter meets him at the
      Pearly Gates. St. Peter says, "Here's how it works. You need 100
      points to make it into heaven. You tell me all the good things you've
      done, and I give you a certain number of points for each item,
      depending on how good it was. When you reach 100 points, you get
      in." "Okay," the man says, "I was married to the same woman for 50
      years and never cheated on her, even in my heart." "That's
      wonderful," says St. Peter, "that's worth three points!" "Three
      points?" he says. "Well, I attended church all my life and supported
      its ministry with my tithe and service." "Terrific!" says St.
      Peter. "That's certainly worth a point." "One point!?!!" "I started a
      soup kitchen in my city and worked in a shelter for homeless
      veterans." "Fantastic, that's good for two more points," he
      says. "Two points!?!! "Exasperated, the man cries. "At this rate the
      only way I'll get into heaven is by the grace of God." "Bingo, 100
      points! Come on in!" We often try to fix problems with duct tape.
      God did it with a cross.

      * * * Simple Death-by-Chocolate Cookies * * *

      1 c flour
      2/3 c unsweetened cocoa powder
      1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
      1/4 teaspoon salt
      ½ pkg choc. chips
      3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) cut –up butter or soft margarine
      3 large eggs
      1 cup granulated sugar
      1/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
      1 teaspoon vanilla extract
      1 1/3 cups semisweet chocolate chips
      1 1/2 cups coarsely chopped pecans
      6 ounces white chocolate, coarsely chopped

      1. Preheat the oven to 325°F. Butter or spray four cookie sheets.
      2. Sift the flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl.
      Melt the
      semisweet chocolate and butter in a double boiler over barely
      simmering water.
      Beat the eggs and granulated and brown sugars in a large bowl with an
      mixer at high speed until creamy. Beat in the chocolate mixture and
      vanilla. Mix
      in the dry ingredients, chocolate chips, pecans, and white chocolate.
      3. Drop tablespoons of the dough 4 inches apart onto the prepared
      cookie sheets. Use the bottom of a glass to flatten the cookies
      slightly. Bake, one sheet at a time, for 8-10 minutes, or until
      cracked on top. Transfer to racks to cool.

      * * *

      "Great opportunities to help others seldom come, but small ones
      surround us
      daily. Nobody can help everybody, but everybody can help somebody!"
      ~~Sally Koch

      It's spring fever. That is what the name of it is.
      And when you've got it, you want-oh, you don't
      quite know what it is you do want, but it just
      fairly makes your heart ache, you want it so!
      ~Mark Twain

      Our greatest glory is not in never failing,
      but in rising up every time we fail.
      ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

      Keeping it Simple,

      Please contact me with recipes, questions, comments and simple living
      ideas that work for you. Email: thesimple_life@...
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