This Is The Year Of The Open Hand

I took a day to myself today. The kids had things to do with friends and family. The house was quiet and I took time to just play and sing. Therapeutic I’m sure! I also created a YouTube video on iMovie. I used my Praying For Time SoundCloud track. I like making the iMovies, they are very personal and completely reflect my life. They are all my personal pictures set to the music I create. Intensely personal. This one tells a bit of a story about how I came to be a Grandparent raising my 5 year old Gran old Granddaughter. It shows a lot of Alissa’s brave moments. Most of them are. Exceptance of our situation will settle with us in time. I just heard from the adoption caseworker . We begin this process in a few weeks…

When I watched my movie back today, it made me tear up in places. We both looked so tired those first few weeks and months. Weary and emotionally wrought. This life change is humbling for both of us I’m sure.

 

Paying Homage To An Old Friend


Not much beats a comfortable chair! I finally got my chair. We bought it back on May 1st. Have had nothing but hassles in getting it. What a headache! We will never buy a special order piece from American Furniture Warehouse again. Customer service was terrible! Nobody knew what was going on with the order. We started calling after hearing nothing for 5 weeks… Only to be told it could be another 8 weeks. .. Just terrible service! It’s here and, it’s huge. I know what you must be thinking…it’s a freaking unmodern ugly recliner! Well sit down in this beauty and tell me it isn’t nice! Comfortable! Not going for esthetics here… This is where I navigate from… Bills get paid here, recipe sorting, meal planning and grocery lists are created while sitting in this very space. Great discussions and family meetings are conducted from this space. I needed a comfortable chair in which to park myself.

My previous recliner was 20 + years old! It was broken down and wooden parts were showing through torn fabric. I had a throw blanket over the arm to hide the wear and literal tears. It was bittersweet having to be done with the broken chair. My mother and father had sat in my chair. My mother and father would always sit in that chair when they would visit. I have fond memories of family events around and about that chair!

Saw me through a lot of great family gatherings. I rocked my Zoe and my G-kids when they were small in this

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My Dad and his wife Terry, are both gone now…

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Showing wear 5 years ago lol…

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Delcee and Korbin. This is had to be about 5 years ago…

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One of the last times I saw my Dad.

A lot of family history in that chair. It more than served it’s purpose! I appreciated and adored that chair and everyone who has ever sat in it. It was a great chair and I’m grateful for the time that it served. I can now retire it at the next bulk trash pick-up. I’m sorry old chair that we used you up and beat the heck out of you! You can be done now.

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Old friend…

I rocked my newborn Zoe in this chair!


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New friend!

The burgundy color in new chair works well for my  Feng Shui prosperity corner. I’ll let you know if it works, I could use some help in this area!

Something More Than Nothing!

Have a terrific day whatever you do! Remember that wherever you go, there you are!

 

 

My Arizona Sun Pie Sweet With A Little Spice


I made a homemade crust but you can used packaged prepared crust if you choose!

I had about 4 small ripe peaches and a 1-1/4 cup of blueberries to use up so here is what I created…

I call it “Arizona Sun Pie”. Mix peeled sliced peaches and washed, air dried blueberries with, 3/4 cup of granulated sugar, 1/4 cup of flour, 1 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon of sea salt. Mix well! 

I made a double pie crust recipe…  Spray pie plate with non stick cooking spray. Roll and place pie crust into the bottom of 9 in pie plate. Prick the bottom and sides of the crust with a fork tines.


Pour the fruit mixture into pastry lined pie plate. Roll top crust to about 1/4 in. thick. Take a small knife and cut pastry in a wavy pattern 1/4 in thick slices lengthwise. Assemble wavy strips onto pie. Using remaining  pastry scraps, roll into a 1/4 in thick sheet. I used assorted sun shaped biscuit cutters for random decorative adornment. You can use any cookie cutter of choice to decorate on and in between the pastry strips. 

Make egg wash… I used one egg white and 1 Tablespoon of water. Using a fork, whip egg white and water together till frothy.

Spread on crust using a pastry brush. 

Topping: 

3 Tablespoons of granulated sugar

1 teaspoon of cinnamon

A pinch (big or small, you choose) ground cayenne pepper! Mix well and sprinkle onto the egg washed crust!


*Notice the rather dark edges, it gives the name even more meaning to the title. 

Bake in 400 degree oven for 45-50 min… 

Cool, serve with ice cream or whipped topping 

Enjoy!!!!

Dad’s Day The Supporter’s And The Shaper’s

Missing this great inventor today. My father, Arthur L. Phipps. He invented this polystyrene insulation. A big industry even today! I was always and still am so proud of my Dad. I miss him so much! He passed away a year and a half ago.

Today is a day for celebrating Dad’s! The good men who love, shape and support the lives of children!  They provide a frame in which to navigate life from. Not even necessarily their biological children! In celebration of this, my kids and G-kids met at our local community pool in an effort to hang out together and beat the heat.

Elizabeth June!


Kadee Lynne!

Aaron Jackson

Thomas Jerry!


Korbin Leedy!


I made two different batches of these for our get together. Loaded with sugar but so delicious! Easy as can be as well!  I made some with chocolate chips and butterscotch morsels. The other bars are chocolate chip/m&m bars. Both have coconut! So yummy and they were great to bake and take to the pool.

Have a wonderful day in celebrating the special Dads’ that have meant the world to you!

Chapel For Tears And Fears


My birthday present! Haven’t had a chance to use it yet. It’s so lovely and sturdy! Nice, nice stoneware! I decided that I would collect the seasonal pieces of the Temp-tations stoneware. This is a spring and summer piece!  So pretty! Thx Tara @QVC! With the amount of heat projected to hit Phoenix this weekend, I can’t see myself turning on the oven. It may be record breaking heat! Like 120 degrees HOT! Don’t have much ambition to cook when temps are 115 and above. Salads become a mainstay.


Father’s Day is around the corner and I want to try to make it special. We have talked about trying to beat the heat this weekend at a really nice local community pool. Nice water slides and features are in abundance at this quaint neighborhood park. We are meeting Britt and the G-kids there for a potluck. I will be baking later this am before the heat of the day.

Weighing heavily on my mind/ heart today is my daughter. Alissa’s Mom. She is redefining hitting rock bottom. Her bottom appears to be bottomless! She now is in the hospital for health issues! I suspect that she has been ill for a very long time! She awaits surgery today to have her gall bladder removed. This gal has been through so much pain and heartache, losing her whole world… I have been so worried for her. Now a really difficult painful health issue on top of it all? Kidney infection and pancreatitis as well all at once? Surely this is her rock bottom? I feel so bad for her having to lay there in a hospital bed contemplating all of her harsh realities. Her husband, a real schmuck has left her. He won’t when return her calls. Laying there feeling abandoned by all of us I’m sure. Heart wrenching to watch. I’m doing the best that I can to encourage her and trying to help her with a game plan for her future. The reality is that I have her daughter. I am in the process of adopting her daughter because the state took her parental rights away. Surely on some level she must completely resent me for having to do so. This is what I question about religion… The things we are called to do sometimes are horrendous ! I never thought that I would have to do the things that I have done to my own daughter. Taking her most precious and dearest treasure, her daughter from her. UGH!

I know in my head that raising Alissa is the right thing and a good thing for this little girl. It is however the cruelest most harsh reality for my daughter. It tears at my heart that my daughter is hurting so much! When I got the text from my daughter, I wasn’t at all surprised to hear that she is having health issues. When I saw her last in court, is was clear to me she was ill. The whites of her eyes had a yellow cast to them and I recall telling her sisters I was worried about her liver. Turns out, that is a common symptom of gall bladder disease. I believe she has been ill with this for a long time. I really have hope that after the surgery, she finds that she feels better than she has in a long time!

I’m hoping that she will get to a point emotionally that she decides it’s time to fight and advocate for herself. Become proactive and show us all what it is to come back from the depths of hell rather than linger there… Hard as hell to watch and be a part of this horrific downward spiral. I will do my best to encourage and be there for her without preaching and imposing my will. I know ultimately this is her fight and plight to overcome. I can tell you for sure that I am really tired of watching this kid sink to the bottom! You never stop worrying about your kids. You hope that you can trust them to take good care of themselves and excersise good judgment in most things…when they don’t as adults, it’s hard as hell to watch!

I went to the hospital to visit my daughter. I missed seeing her before surgery because they took her in early. I waited in the surgery waiting area. While I was there, I visited the serene little chapel next to the OR suite. I haven’t set foot in a religious dwelling for years. It felt nice to be in this small, serene, quaint room. I prayed for my daughter. It felt good to take time to do that!

  • Update-my daughter is starting to feel better and recovering well after surgery yesterday! Thank God! I am truly grateful!

My Escape…

Domestic Bliss Give Me A Kiss


Father’s Day is projected to be 120 degrees! My daughter Delcee tracks the weather and sends me screenshots about what’s coming. Delcee told me that it hasn’t been this hot in June since 1990! I’m not looking forward to the heat. We had a bit of reprieve this weekend here in Phoenix. The top temp was like 103 which, is doable.  When the weather is sooooo hot you can’t get cool unless you soak in something cool. It’s hard to sleep because you can’t cool down well even with AC. Gone are the decent electric bills. I envision $400.00 dollar SRP bills are coming soon…


This is pretty much what you want to eat when it’s hot. This is Asian Chicken Salad. I see salads in our weekend plans…

I put together a video using my Casual Conversations SoundCloud track and some pics from my photos. I had fun putting this together yesterday while drinking my coffee.

Letting My Secrets Come OutTo Play


I suppose I’m like all the other wannabe artist out there who long for a music career. Lots of us vying for a lucrative, slice of music industry recognition. Putting ourselves out there on SoundCloud, YouTube, and anywhere else we can find to upload to for exposure. Living life in between the madness of creating content. Always waiting for our “big break”. It’s so funny because after a few years of doing this, you start to wonder if you are the only one who thinks that what you create is any good. Your friends and family have long since jumped ship on your creative endeavors. They no longer have interest, so you don’t talk about it. You just create and upload, and hope for the best in silence. You give it all you have but in silence… You quit sharing that personal side of yourself for fear of bothering others with it. You no longer share your hopes and dreams, they become silent. As if they just went away and cease to exsist. You feel as if you live a double life and are stealing moments from other obligigations to create. Almost as if you are sneaking around with your time rather than what you should be attending to. You have long realized that nobody takes that part of you seriously. You begin to see that they rather think that part of you a joke. You see that friends and family don’t believe in your ability to do something noteworthy, (pardon the pun). It becomes a real disappoint that try as you might, you just aren’t good enough. In kindness, you say to yourself “well, this is all subjective” ! Beauty, is in the eye of the beholder! You think/wish and pray, that you could find a way, to appeal to the subset of people who would like your music.

The silence becomes deafening regarding originals. Nobody wants to even listen to originals! You throw links out there to your originals on social media… Only to find, no views, no listens…You try to figure out how to get people interested enough to spend 4 min on your music…I don’t know how anyone gets anything heard! So I’m going to put all of my originals here in one post. I have never done this… If I had a CD, this is what it would sound like… This may be the closest thing to actually having a CD that I  will have…

What does it take to get you interested enough to listen to me…? Meat suits, funny eyewear, bling on every finger? What gimmick, what attention grabbing quirky thing do I need to do, to get you to hear me?

For anyone out there willing to take the time to listen…I could use subscribers! Please subscribe to my YouTube and SoundCloud channels!

Your support means the world to me!

SoundClouds:

YouTube Videos:

For what it’s worth… Although I don’t yet have enough original material here for a whole CD, I like what I have! Collectively, it has it’s own feeling and overall vibe. It melds well together and seems to be my style, whatever that is. Like many musicians I can almost envision what this could be if I had money to throw at it! A great arranger, mixing and mastering could make this awesome! It must be a dream come true to hear something you have written complete with all of the fixes and adornment. In it’s absolute best possible form and sound…When I was young, I would ponder what it would feel like to hear a song you have written and performed, on the radio for the first time. I would daydream with complete all encompassing feeling what this would be like. As if, it were my reality. I don’t think anything on earth, could give me more personal joy than this fantasy!

In another life, I would hope like hell to find, and surround myself with people who believe in me as an artist. I would try like heck to find people who could help me realize my full potential here. In kind, I would do the same for them. A synergistic creative love-fest for music and creating together. That has always been my dream. It’s empty and shallow here alone…To be a part of something grand, would be my personal nirvana! Life couldn’t get any better than that! Nobody does it alone, it takes a village.

I’d love to break the stereotype that only young artists make it. Look at all of these old rockers still out there making music and sounding great! Why the hell did society decide only young people are cool and desireable/marketable? I would love to kick some ass and help break that way of thinking. See, I have grand, (large) dreams! If only lol…

For now I will set about executing what I can do in life… The dishes, cleaning the cat litter, caretaking and grocery shopping are all on my agenda for today. So back in my head, in silence go my dreams-