Category Archives: Throwback Thursday

Believing In Signs

One Big Sign

Before we found our farm, we looked for 7 years. It was a long seven years too. One gentleman promised we would have a house, and we stayed in escrow for 9 months. My husband was heartbroken. One day, on our way home from Santa Barbara we stopped to drive by the property in escrow. We saw the photo below, and I knew it was done. We were not going to get this property that was in escrow for 9 long months.

When I pray, I ask for big signs that I can’t ignore. I have even said out loud in my prayers…You know I don’t do subtle, so show me something unmistakable. I would say this sign was pretty clear. It looks like a giant foot to me. What do you think? On our drive home, I already started the mourning process for the property. IMG_3613

Honey Healing

One of the first weekends we were living in the country, this happened…

I was taking both of the dogs (Cane Corso females) for a walk. Since we were new to the country I did not want to trust to just let them out in the yard. Now, our yard is 42 acres. There are coyotes and other animals around here. I was gazing at the stars when all the sudden Sadie pulled really hard, and I did not let go. I was pulled across the rocks like I was a rag doll. I screamed, and Sheba stopped. Sheba stayed right by my side, and Sadie was running after what ever it was that was near our house. I limped back into the house with Sheba.

I went upstairs and washed my legs with soap and water. I had to take a wash cloth to get all the debris that was embedded in my legs. My left leg looked a lot worse than my right leg. It burned like hell…it was really painful. I took some honey, and put it all over the wounds, and took another wash cloth that was damp and kept it over the wound.

I kept the wound clean every day, and also added honey to it every day. By the third day it was really looking so much better. By two weeks it was healed. I believe I was in less pain, and it healed faster with the honey.

One Pretty Picture

Ok, really it is three photos, but I loved the two with the palm tree to the right. This was my view out of my window at the Claremont Hotel in Berkeley, CA. I was so inspired by the photos that I wanted to buy a book from the gift shop, Guess what? They had zippo books in the gift shop. The lady behind the counter was rather rude too. No suggestions about where I could get a book. I mean, really by the time I got to the elevator I shook off the attitude and thought about looking for one on Amazon. Which is still in my cart. I do love the carts at Amazon. 

This one is probably one of favorites. Sutro tower on the left. 

This one is pretty, but the light wasn’t as beautiful as the one before. Then again, someone else may like this one better. 

First Mission Project

Children that live in California complete a project all about one of the 21 Missions that line the coast. My son wanted to write his report on Santa Barbara. We went though the book together to try to decide where we would go from Oakland. We would often visit the missions that were close to our area. San Francisco, San Jose, Sonoma, and others, were all in our area. Sergio wanted to do his report on one that was new to the family. 

They were trying something new the year he was writing his report. He loved taking photos since he was really young. So, he wanted to make a movie about the trip. He did his research, and had his camera ready for the trip. I remember like it was yesterday, it was so cold, and we got up so early. He wanted to talk about his trip before we got started. When I was filming him, I forgot to take the lens cap off the camera. UGH! As my husband was driving I looked at the film, only to see that I had royally screwed up his little intro. We would have to wait until we got to Santa Barbara to redo the intro. 

Once we got there, he was like a little pro. We refilled the intro in several different locations. He walked down the front steps as he talked and I filmed. We tried another intro by the fountain, and another on the front lawn. We walked through the mission, and he said his lines just as he wrote them with some sideline items when he would feel like doing a little ad lib, in the moment. 

Once we were all done, it was time to visit the gift shop. We purchased several books and a few souvenirs. I purchased a big bell for myself, and a little bell for Sergio. There was only one big bell there, and he wanted it. I told him if he got an A on his project I would give him the big bell. I selfishly thought he was going to get a B, but he ended up getting an A. I am so proud to have such confident children. Feel a little bad that I wanted to keep the bell to myself. He proudly displayed the bell on his shelf beside one of his cars. The bell is one of his favorite things. It has a great story that goes with it. 

Coloring Shopping

Before consturction began on our house in the Bay Area we would go shopping of sorts. We would get into our car, and go to Piedmont, CA to look for just the right color. We knew we wanted a yellow hue. There are just so many of them out there, and we wanted to find the right balance. Our neighborhood was filled with white homes. We thought our neighborhood could use some color.

When we told my Mother In Law she was not happy. She thought we were going to embarrass her. Later she would tell us that she too wanted to change the color of her house. We liked the color she wanted for her house, but she never got to change it. We are going to use the color she wanted for her on a rental house. It will be a tribute to her to paint our a rental house her color.

Anyway, we found the house, and there were no apps that gave us exactly what we were looking for back then. We had to do it the old fashion way…ask.

I knew I would have to be the one to ask, so I went up to the door. Actually, it was the gate. They had an intercom system, so I pressed the button and I asked “Do you know the name of the color of your beautiful home?”

The lady of the house replied “I do not know for sure the name of the color, but I can ask our construction supervisor.” I then asked if she would like to have my phone number so she could call me, and tell me the name of the color. She took my phone number, but weeks passed.

I lived close to the house, so we went for a Sunday drive to the house. It was house stalking. LOL! I had to approach the intercom again, press that button…from the intercom she told me…”I am glad you drove by, I lost your phone number. The color is called Desert Gold with 30% white.” Oh, thank you, I replied. Here is the house I color stalked…

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Homemade Play Dough

After my husband and I were married we decided that when we had children that I would stay home with the children. I obtained my Montessori Certification, and we had preschool homeschool. At least once a week we made homemade play dough. I thought maybe there would be some people out there that would like the recipe.

My kids loved this project. Cooking and doing fun crafts should be a part of every childhood.

Here is the recipe…

1 cup of all purpose flour

2 teaspoons of cream of tartar (find it in the spice section of a local grocery store)

1/2 teaspoon of salt

1 cup of water

1 tablespoon of olive oil

1 teaspoon of vanilla, lavender, peppermint, or any essence oil you like

Add about 20 drops of food color. Count out loud as adding. We used to do one color a week. We would do one week red, next week blue, then the next week make purple. It’s neat to add the color with the fragrance. Purple as lavender, green and add apple scent, etc.

Cook all the ingredients in a 2 quart pot. Stir over the heat until it becomes a ball.

Remove from the heat, and cut in half…let it sit because it is very hot!!!  I used to roll it on the granite, since it will cool very nicely.  It will keep for more than a week in a freezer bag.

Make sure the kids don’t eat it!

Our Special Door

Our house in Oakland was  under construction for 10 very long months. Sometimes, it was exhausting finding just the right materials. Our architect would send us one missions to find the tiles, doors, windows, carpet, etc. This particular time, we were on a hunt for our front door.  We had to go find a door that we wanted, and thought fit the house. Our house had European flare, so we wanted that reflected in the door. We spent a lot of time looking online before we went out looking for the one.

We saw there was one in the Moraga, Orinda CA area, so we set out to see the showroom ourselves. When we got there it was raining, so we told our very small children to shake off their umbrellas, and put them in the umbrella stand before we went inside. The older gentleman had a tin foil hat on his head. Yep, that is what I said…Tin foil on his head.

In the beginning I was thinking maybe he saw we had small children and he was being entertaining in his own way. One thing you learn really quick in California is…Don’t ask too many questions if you are not ready for the answer.

As we talked about the VERY high price of the door. We talked about how the door came from a forest where the people of the forest are given a fair trade price for the doors. Hence, this was the reason for the high price. We were then talking about the opening, and the measurements, and still he had on the foil hat. I was wondering when he was going to be funny. Then my son, he was about three at the time ask the question all of us were dying to know. Why do you have the foil hat on your head?

Oh boy, he then stated to tell us that since it was raining the aliens had special powers that could get into our heads. My son covered his head. I told my son “he is just kidding.” The little old man then started to explain the seriousness of the situation, and how I should protect the children. He told us with a straight face…  “Always know where your foil is!!” OMG! I almost started busting out with laughter. I couldn’t even look at my husband. This guy was the only guy around in the East Bay that had the door we wanted. I didn’t wan to offend him, and I just wanted to order the door.

My daughter started getting cranky, and he said the littlest one is feeling the vibrations from the aliens. I gave my husband the LOOK. He then politely told the gentleman that we had to go.  We did finally get to order the door. The little old man continue to talk as we were leaving his shop. He even accompanied us to the car. picture-1

We finally got the door, but the hinges were on the wrong side. We had to send the door back, and wait for a main door for Three weeks. We were pretty grateful that we had another temporary door.