Posted in Life

My favorite candles!!!

Almost nightly, while making dinner I’ll light a candle. I love the smell of them. The way the flames glow in the evening light and the sound they make. What??? Sound you say. Yes!!! I have a new favorite candle. They make the nicest crackling sound when they’re lit and are so relaxing. They’re Wood Wick candles.

This is my favorite scent. It’s “Cinnamon Chai” and smells like fresh cinnamon stick with a hint of nutmeg. It reminds me of Fall. I just LOVE it!!

This one is called “Fireside” and it really does smell just like wood burning in the fireplace. This is definitely a more masculine scent and is a favorite of my sons.

I love giving candle as gifts too. I’ll spend an hour just smelling all of the candles, thinking about who would be a good recipient of that scent or another.  I’ve found most people love having candles, and even if they don’t burn them, these really do smell good (and look good) just sitting on an end table or coffee table, even the mantle.

They have these cute little “gallerie” style candles in different scents in cutely colored metal containers with matching lids.

This one of the “inspirational” candles. They come in a variety of sayings – Faith, Mom, Friends, Celebrate…etc.

This is called “Ribbon Wick”, they don’t crackle but they are so beautiful burning.

Hope you can enjoy a little ambiance too~Bam!!

Posted in Books

A Tragedy

I have some friends who live in a third world country, running an English school, and when I learned that this is really happening, still in this decade, it made my heart ache.

These two stories are vastly different yet completely the same. Both of these girls have had a hard life before being sold but then it got infinitely harder. Both had family’s that couldn’t afford to raise them but Mother’s who loved them dearly. Unfortunately women in this part of  world really don’t have a voice and that in itself is unthinkable to most of the women in the rest of the world.

SOLD – This is a story of a girl “Lakshmi” who is sold into slavery. She was raised in a poor family from Nepal in the Himalayan Mountains. Her Mother is bound by generations of traditions and a stepfather who gambles and drinks every cent they have away.

She’s told by her stepfather that she’s going to the “big city” to be a maid for a rich family to help support her family. She’s so excited, and believes it to be a privilege to help. Her stepfather sells her for 800 rupees. In today’s economy this would equal to $13.36 in US dollars. But, then she’s sold again, twice, for a price of 10,000 rupees ($167)  and finally ends up at a place called “Happiness House”! However, she realizes all too late that there will be no happiness for her, she’s been sold into prostitution.  She’s beaten and abused by a woman she know as Mumtaz. This is a horrible fate for anyone, let alone someone who’s only 13!! Finally an American comes to visit.

 
I AM NUJOOD, AGE 10 AND DIVORCEDShe lived in a little village with her parents and several siblings. Happy being a child but knowing her family is very poor. Her Father arranges her marriage to the neighborhood delivery boy. He promises the family he won’t touch her until she’s older. After traveling for hours to her new village, shels abused by her husband night after night, beaten and assaulted. No one will help, her mother-in-law and sister-in-law only encouraged his behavior by saying it’s her duty to be a good wife.

After days of crying and begging to go back home, he finally gives in takes her back for a visit. She receives no help, even from her own father, but after spilling her heart out to her father’s second wife she now knows what she must do. She escapes to the city and goes straight to the court house. It’s unheard of women asking for divorce, especially someone who’s only 10. After all, the legal age to marry in her country is 15.

I haven’t told you the rest of either of these stories because I don’t want to spoil the ending. Both of these stories are about incredible young ladies being held against their will, living in horrible conditions but still with a will to live. Not only that but with a will to find help and stand up for themselves. Which, in the area of the world where they are from, is pretty unthinkable. Even today, women are still considered below their husbands, and are treated miserably.

I hope you have the chance to read these books. They’re enlightening, full of emotion and are truly stories of endurance and great faith!!~Bam

Posted in The Dog

Ginger Basil Dog Biscuits

There are a few herbs that are good for both humans and dogs alike. So, I got to thinking about combinations that sounded like something I would eat and I came up with these.

Since I used fresh basil, garlic, and ginger I only used small amounts.

Anyway, here’s the recipe.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1 cup 2% milk
P1000886 1 tsp. fresh basil, finely chopped

P1000885 1/2 tsp. fresh ginger, grated and 1 small clove of garlic, minced.

P1000887 The dough will be sticky. Roll the dough out, using flour as needed to help keep it from sticking to the rolling pin and table.

P1000889  I used a small flour shaped cutter and a small star shaped cutter. I dipped them in a little flour before each cut to keep it from sticking too.

P1000890 Bake at 375 for about 20 minutes. Here they are!!!

I made small treats because our dog is small and she has to have a treat every time she comes back in from being outside. (Yes– she’s sneaky that way!!) I did eat one of them (so did my husband). We both couldn’t believe how good they tasted. I’m actually thinking about using this combination in a biscuit, it would definitely be delicious with beef stew this Winter.

Hope your four legged friend enjoys them as much as mine!! ~ Bam

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Life

Daylilies

I love flowers that are self sufficient, at least for the most part! Daylilies are just that, they’re also pretty, bloom all season, are hardy and you only have to separate them every few years. Even then, they’re easy to split if the grounds moist, and most anyone is happy to have a split to start in their own yards.

I have several variety and they’ve been blooming beautifully this summer. So, I thought I’d share some pictures with you.

P1000879 P1000880 P1000881 P1000882  P1000884 I planted most of these last year when I decided the side of our house was just too dull and needed some sprucing up. We have some Hostas around but they don’t bloom very long and I just need some more color in my summer!!

Enjoy~Bam

Posted in Books

The joy of reading

I love to read!!! I read mostly fiction, but on occasion I will read some non-fiction.
In my opinion, this Kindle Fire is the best tool ever for reading. There are tons of books I can download from my local library for FREE to rent for 21 days. I can also download the newspaper, my favorite magazines, most Android based apps and even music and videos. This little thing does about everything.

I just finished reading a couple of books. They were both very enlightening, one fiction and the other non-fiction. Both were about a boy named “Jacob” with Aspergers. My son’s name is Jacob and was diagnosed with Aspergers when he was about 11; so a good friend of mine suggested I read both of these. (I’m glad she did!!)

Fiction – however, I’m sure Jodi Picoult did a lot of research. It’s about a teenager who has Aspergers that is accused of murdering his tutor. It’s called “House Rules” because people with Aspergers like rules, and having order. There are a lot of twists and turns in this book and I found it a very quick and easy read.
  Non-fiction. This book is written by the mother of a child with Aspergers, who lives here in Indiana, also. This is a very interesting story about a Mom who was told her child probably wouldn’t be able to tie his own shoes let alone function in society. He’s now studying advanced physics, quantum theories and other related studies that I, nor half of the world, could begin to understand. The premise of this book is how his Mom helped him get back to a somewhat normal life. I think the book does have some good points and it certainly seemed to work for her and for the other families discussed in the book. She did go on a few tangents about other family members, mostly her Grandfather, so it made the book a little harder to read at some points. But all in all the book was very insightful.

I really enjoyed both of these books and found some things made more sense in regards to our own situation after I read them. Our son’s almost nineteen now, so, I’ll always be his Mom, but I’m done “raising” him. That doesn’t mean that I’m not going to be here when he needs me, it’s just different now. One day, I’m sure he’ll move away and live his own life. (and that’s a good thing – he needs to be able to be an independent, contributing citizen in society).

What scares me is the amount of people being diagnosed on the Autism spectrum now, the numbers are incredible. According to the CDC, 1 in 88 children are being diagnosed on the spectrum.

Jacob is an only child, so everything was a new experience to us. I just wish I had known more about Aspergers when he was diagnosed, but there just didn’t seem to be that much information out there at the time. I realize that people with Aspergers all relate differently, but I have also come to realize that there are some very specific traits that most of these kids start out with.

For instance, our son walked on his tip toes – a lot, which was probably a sensory thing. They tend to have heightened senses and as a result react differently to touch, taste, light, noise, crowds etc… He also had a very strong fascination with dinosaurs. He could tell you there names, what they ate, how and when they lived, but that’s as far as it went. He didn’t line them up in any specific order. Every night at bedtime I would read him a book or bible story, and after about the third reading he would “read” along with me. He’d memorized the words by then. He was always wanting to take things apart to “see how they work” too. Problem was he didn’t have any desire to put them back together, once he figured things out he moved on to something else. And really, he’s never been particularly organized. (completely unlike me -who color codes the closet – ha ha).

P1000876 He loved playing with ribbon (and toilet paper when he was a lot younger). Once I picked him up from his Grandparents and there was a beautiful display of ribbon hanging from there chandelier in the entry way, and in the bedrooms, and the hallway. This is another point that was made in “Spark” – I had no idea that my Jacob was doing anything but having a fun time with the string, but apparently there must have been more to it that that.  Another correlation I found interesting with the “Spark” book was the both my Jacob and the other Jake is they have difficult time reading fiction. My Jacob just prefers not to fill his mind with things that aren’t true or real, it just isn’t logical. And if nothing else, most people with Aspergers are very logical thinkers. If it doesn’t make sense then it’s a total waste of his time basically.

Sorry if this is too long. It’s a subject dear to my heart and I hope you found it interesting.~Bam