Something to think about.

experienceI saw this sign while shopping with a friend yesterday. We went to a shabby chic haven of small stores selling a plethora of clever items that we could have made ourselves if we only had thought of the ideas first.

At any rate, this sign caught my eye and its message gave me pause.

My first thought after reading it was actually ‘Oh geez, what has the last year been preparing me for? Seemed like a frightening thought after a pretty exhausting year of events.’

But on the flip side, it makes sense that each experience prepares us for the next.  And that’s a good thing.

Because life gets easier the more we do it.  Just like we get better at playing catch the more we practice.

We learn how to relax and get into a rhythm with the ball.  How to position ourselves for successful catches by reading the ball and predicting where it might end up.

We also learn to recognize and dodge those fast balls that could really hurt if they nailed us. And how to catch the next hardball differently so it doesn’t sting so much.

And most importantly we learn how to be open — and unafraid —  to catch certain curve balls that can change our life forever.

What about you?  How do you think each experience prepares us for the next?

Oh, tell me what you want, what you really, really want …

dandy3In my 200th post – I’m shaking things up a bit and making this post all about you.

This blog is about a lot of things.  The common thread is usually some kind of either wry or raw perspective that I have gained from my journey through this thing called life.

I have almost 600 followers now and this blog has been viewed by people in 91 countries — all of which blows my mind.  And makes me very grateful.

dandy4Which is why I want to know…

What do you like to read most here?  What about this blog do you most feel a connection with?

Do you like my posts that are about gratitude (like my first 100 when this blog started)?

Or ones that are sarcastic or self deprecating? Or about parenting or being part of the sandwich generation?

Or ones that are filled with what is sometimes pretty raw emotion?

Short posts or long ones?  Posts where I participate in a Worpress challenge or writing prompt exercise?

Or simply posts with nice pictures or paintings (no judgement here…)?

You tell me.

And thank you for being part of this blog!


Message in a Drip Beef Sandwich

diamond jack'sI knew I needed to cook that big hunk of meat in my fridge before more time had passed.  I had a crockpot recipe for drip beef sandwiches at the ready, but it suddenly looked too complicated.  Or I hadn’t had enough coffee yet.  Or it was simply because I am a lazy cook.

I also knew my sister’s birthday was coming up, but I hadn’t realized today was June 11th yet as I quickly googled “easy quick drip beef crockpot recipe.”

Very first result out of twelve million, four hundred thousand possibilities was  Diamond Jack’s Drip Roast Beef Sandwich recipe.  My eyes filled with bittersweet tears.  And I realized what day it was.

Diamond Jack’s was a restaurant that was in Tulsa, OK for 47 years and just closed a couple of years ago.

This restaurant, which began in the 1960s, was a special place that my sister absolutely loved to take me to for their Drip Roast Beef Sandwiches, which were awesome.

I remember how proud she was to take her little sister out to lunch and to introduce me to people who we ran into.  She was so glad that I was living back in town and she loved treating me to lunch now that I was officially an adult with a job and all.  It didn’t happen often, but when these lunches took place, they were certainly special.

I haven’t even thought about that restaurant or those specific sandwiches in more than ten years.

But today, the day my sister would have turned 50 years old,  the day my sister would have hosted one hell of a fun party …  my sister reminded me that she was here with me …through a Drip Beef Sandwich recipe.  I know it to be true.  And so does my heart.

Ingredients for Diamond Jack’s Crock-Pot Drip Beef:

  • 4-5 lbs boneless beef rump roast
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 (1 1/4 ounce) envelope dry onion soup mix
  • 1/2 teaspoon italian seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon beef bouillon, granules
  • 2 dashes worcestershire sauce
  • garlic salt
  • pepper

Preparation of Diamond Jack’s Crock-Pot Drip Beef:

  1. Cut the visible fat from the rump roast. Place the roast in a large crock pot.
  2. Combine the rest of the ingredients in a 2-cup measure and bring to boil a microwave.
  3. Pour over the roast in the crock pot. Add garlic salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Cook on low for 8 hours.
  5. Cool before slicing.
  6. Chill au jus to remove the fat.
  7. Combine the sliced meat and au jus and reheat before serving.
  8. May also be cooked in oven: combine as above in Dutch oven. Cook 4-5 hours at 275-300 degrees.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Fleeting


This week’s photo challenge is about capturing a fleeting moment.  I had the perfect photo in mind.

I took this photo on a walk with a friend recently just as a group of dense, rain-filled clouds was quickly rolling in and seemed to almost circle our spot in the path and the pond before us. As if nature had been painting a picture for us and waiting for us to get there to see it.

If I hadn’t stopped right at that very second to capture this fleeting moment as these full and heavy clouds were preparing to open for us and as the simply awesome smell of the coming rain was saturating the air …  the moment would have been gone.

The photo challenge prompt mentioned an article, Photography 101: Introduction & Philosophy which kicks off a blogging photography series and interviews Danielle Hark who founded a collaborative photography site called the Broken Light Collective.  She talks about how photography helps her stay in the present and is her own form of meditation.

This spoke to me, since photography is one of the best ways to make myself slow down enough to be present in the moment. And most likely the closest I get to meditating as well.

Does photography help you stay in the moment?  What visual comes to mind when you think of the word Fleeting?  Such a simple word that floods my mind with so many visuals.  This was just one.