Sunday, April 4, 2021


At breakfast the other morning I  said to my wife, that this time in
our history is the end of our era. We both are planning for another 10/20 years, the good lord willing, but those career and working years are done.

A good amount of our energies now focus on  our basic living responsibilities during these aging years. Also planning future needs/wants for in home health and general care.

In these last years, our lifetime has taught us that we do not need much in the way of things to be happy. Food in the fridge, a few chunks of meat in the freezer, storage shelves with basics need not be more than getting through a half year of emergency. We no longer need a 30 year roof. Ten years now is our future thinking. “Less is more” has come full circle, become a way of living and that adage has proven/proving to be true. Time is what has the most value now.

Time to fully enjoy nothing happening. Visits with old friends and wonderful neighbors. A drive to town for a chocolate dipped cone and noticing the beauty and vistas along the way.

We both have traveled the world and the 50 states. The stories of our previous lives and our current years together are also proof that we did smell some roses along the way. A bell curve of memories for both of us. Do it all over again? Maybe, but only with the granted wish of getting to do that with our current knowledge base and experiences of the years gone by.

We have lived full circle in the changing world of media. From newspapers, books and radio through this age of all consuming electronics. These days we choose to go back to minimal media.

No TV news of any sorts and there is so much radio static in our little part of Texas, that radio reception is spotty to the point of annoyance. Even that medium is filled to the brim with advertisements and someone else's opinion push. Her still likes the distraction of something on during the day for background noise. But someone else's noise coming into our home now is followed by the off button. Two people ranting at each other is proof positive. Who in the hell wants to live like that, or listen on a day by day basis?

Sports today has been corrupted/politicized from top to bottom. Sad!! Although, we may get in some highschool football games this fall. Then again, most likely will need papers to get though the gates. 



Several of our pine trees appear to be dead or dying. Hundred year hard winter freeze appeared to have killed some east Texas vegetation. 

Well, not so much. 

The local forest service here and life long neighbors have explained that the hard freeze caused the pine trees to go dormant for their own survival. Now coming out of that, the new growth at the top of the trees is an indicator they are doing just fine. "Give them time; a few months..." before making any final decision on removal. 

The abundance of pine cones is also a sign from the trees how important it is for species survival. They are over-producing pine cones and future seed. Pine trees are serious about their kind continuing on. 

I also thought Jack and John Lemon trees had lost their battle to winter. Even though they were kept in the garage with a small heater going, they withered down to one or two leaves left on their branches. Now leafing and budding this seasons lemons.

Time and weight take their toll on a several-year-old bale of hay.

Maybe a little (more like a lot) TLC to get back on the road. But who would not like to travel in this? Been setting for 7 years and just this weekend the young owners are taking it home to mid west. They plan to rebuild and refit. 



Sweet and sour spare ribs served over rice.

A throw back to my early teen years. This was one of the meals I often asked my mother to make. The secret is in the sauce and slow  cooked pork ribs. 

The homemade sweet and sour sauce was basic. Mom used canned, ringed pineapples and cut them into chunks. The juice from the can mixed with some brown sugar, a dash of apple cider vinegar, soy sauce and the pineapple juice. Thickener was corn starch and a couple tablespoons of water. The color and added sweetness comes from Maraschino cherries and a tablespoon or two of the juice adds a special sweetness. 

This is always a work in progress. Making the basic sauce and then taste testing. 

I used a basic recipe from YouTube and memories of what mom use to do. 

The flavor and richness was wonderful. I will use the same sweet and sour sauce on chicken next time. 

The wife is not a fan of any sweet and sour on anything. So this plating was just for me. Pork ribs, rice with soy sauce worked for her.


Not photo worthy, a cup/pot of broth. 

Three fatty chicken thighs simmered in a 3 quart pot with lid. I do 2 hours. The chicken meat stripped of fat and bone junk, makes a great warm lunch meal on its own. Add a dash of salt. 

Skim the pot with a small strainer. Then add a small spoonful or couple cubes of chicken bullion. If you have a container of left over chicken broth in the fridge, add that. Won ton soup mix if you find it; a small spoonful. Two circles of soy sauce. Bring to a simmer.

A cup of this to sip on during the day or with any meal is wonderful. Cold afternoons. Add fresh diagonally sliced green onion. Excellent for helping the common cold or flu? Remember when we were able to take care of ourselves and family when these seasons rolled around every year?

Boil any kind of flat noodles and add at meal time to a bowl of this soup. Always with fresh sliced green onions. OR thin strips of left over steak, chicken, pork or ham. Keep in mind that it is the broth and other additives are just a flavor tease. 

Add frozen won tons. Perogies work. Make em or buy em. 

Regardless, I find a good cup of homemade won ton soup a wonderful comfort food. 

Find chicken bullion and won ton soup mix. Keep some in your kitchen cabinets. Both add flavor to cooking meats and vegetables. A dash here and there.




A good read found on the OrganicPrepper blog site. 

Written by Selco. This author has lived through and survived down times and recognizes what is happening in this country. A no BS approach in the telling and offering of advice.  He is an author I read and take to heart. Seek his other writings and stories if you are of a mind.


April 2021. Remember April's past when you could recognize an April Fools Joke and distinguish that from world reality? And when playing a joke on someone else was funny. I miss the days when most folks had a sense of humor and were playful.

Rain and sun this past week. First potatoes poking through the dirt rows. Cabbages screaming growth. Fresh lettuce leaves now on the table. 

Carrots finally. I had just about given up on them, but the day after a good rain, they have started. Looks to be a decent first attempt. 

Seasonal yard clean up done and now it will be every two weeks of mowing, weeding and perimeter yard cleaning. The planting of flowers along the road front. I think the bride plans on throwing wild flowers everywhere she can. 

Easter today. Dinner for two will be relaxing with leftovers this coming week. Good Friday in East Texas is also the day official garden planting starts. The possibility of any freezing nights will not threaten. This according to locals and history.

Appreciate the visit this week.  

1 comment:

  1. I went with the wife last week to the Hill Country to see some of her past. Her grandmother was raised in Lometa, and relatives lived on a farm near San Saba. We avoided the interstate, and larger communities, when we could, so we could spend time examining more than the traffic. Our journey took us to many small towns northwest of Austin, which made me wonder how such a corrupted city could survive being surrounded by such goodness.

    Spring is just now arriving in many places. The harsh winter left many of the gnarly branches of the old oaks broken by heavy ice, and many are lacking any sign of budding. Trees that are budding are weeks behind our trees in Southeast Texas. Signs of drought abound, and a dry Summer will probably be devastating.

    Retirement offered us some time to make short trips, life without a demanding schedule, and some solitude to reflect on our blessings. It's a good thing, but a reminder the majority of our time is only memories. Like a fine meal, relishing the flavor of a dessert demands slowly enjoying every moment.