Thursday, September 26, 2013


I've taken a real liking to hummus lately.  In the past, it wasn't something I was excited about, mostly because the hummus I had was rather bland.

Now I have found several recipes to make my own and what a difference!  This is a highly nutritious snack, especially when you use fresh veggies to dip into it.

Here is just one of my recipes.  Try it!

1 clove garlic
1 19 oz. can garbanzo beans
4 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons tahini
1 teaspoon salt
black pepper to taste
2 tablespoons olive oil

In a food processor, chop a large clove of garlic.  Combine the rest of the ingredients in the processor and process on high until well blended.

I often get dried garbanzo beans at a natural food store and use those in recipes instead of canned.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Happy Birthday, Jake!

Happy Birthday to my grandson, Jake!  He is eleven years old today.  Jake, and his brothers, Kevin and Andrew, are a big source of pride to me.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Something good happened to me today at work

In my job, I supervise the secretaries in our Division (Neonatology) and now the student employees.  Anyone who has ever supervised people will tell you it isn't a rose garden.

I wasn't looking forward to going to work today.  We had posted a job opening for a student employee.  We thought we had one hired.  At the eleventh hour, he found another job "with more hours and more pay."  I had three interviews scheduled for today.  'Okay, I can do this,' I told myself.

The first young woman who came in was all smiles with a bubbly personality.  I have a pocket full of questions I ask job candidates to test their abilities to handle the job and find out what they are really like behind that cute smile and warm handshake.  I've actually found a few who don't bother to shake hands, if you can believe that.

As the interview went along, I warmed up to this young lady.  "Tell me," I began, "what accomplishment are you most proud of in your life and why?"

She smiled broadly.  "Definitely coming to the U of R (University of Rochester).  I am the first one in my family to go to college.  We are immigrants."  She is of Filipino heritage and it is obvious this young lady is going places in life.  She particularly wanted this job because she is considering going into Medicine and is drawn to Pediatrics."

I never hire someone right on the spot, no matter how impressed I am with them.  I waited a few hours and called her back to let her know we had chosen her and could she come back today to sign the required paperwork.  She was ecstatic!

From all indications so far, that young woman's parents did a fine job raising her.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Review: Gun Belt from Dragon Leatherworks

I love the new gun belt I ordered from Dragon Leatherworks.  This is no ordinary gun belt.  It is a quality piece of work from a dealer where I have bought holsters in the past.  You have a choice of buckles and the first 6 or 8 inches of the belt is a single piece of leather to make pulling it through belt loops easier.  It has an inner layer to prevent the belt from stretching.

For premium quality American made holsters and gun belts, look no further than Dragon Leatherworks! 

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

I've made up my mind

This past weekend, as you can read in the last post, I was in the Adirondacks at a state campground.  I was paddling in waters I have paddled for the last 30 plus years.  In recent years, I haven't gotten back there.  You know, Life 101 always gets in the way of our best intentions.

I realized just how much I had missed these waters.  There are little streams and ponds, where motorboats can't get to - and in some cases are prevented by law from entering.  It is a true paddler's paradise.  It is a "get away from it all" experience.  You are likely to run into others in kayaks or canoes, who, like you, appreciate and love places like this.  You will see all kinds of ducks and birds, even a crane who doesn't appreciate you disturbing their home.  At night and during the day, you will hear the enchanting call of the loon - the bird, not the human kind of loon.

I came home more committed than ever to get back up there next summer.  In fact, you can make camping reservations 9 months ahead of time.  Come next month, I will call the reservation agent and reserve a campsite in Rollins Pond campsite for a week next July.  I owe it to myself and my sense of well being to do it.

I sent my friend, Nancy, who was with me this weekend, an e-mail and told her of my plans.  Not one to commit to something that far in advance, I knew she wouldn't make a commitment now.  "That comes at a time of a lot of family birthdays," she said.  I hope she can go.  But I will go by myself if I have to.  It is just that important to me.

Monday, September 9, 2013

A weekend of camping in the Adirondacks

My friend, Nancy and I, in the past have backpacked, canoe camped, snowshoed, and cross country skiied all over the Adirondacks.  However, due to time constraints. . . okay, and maybe old age setting in! . . . we haven't been to the Adirondacks in a couple years or more.  Awhile back we decided to set a weekend aside and just do it.  On Friday we headed up to the Adirondacks with my canoe on top of the car and the inside of the car loaded with gear.

A funny thing happened in my garage Friday morning when she came over to help me load the canoe onto the car.  I was emptying out the life jackets, and a few other minor items that had collected in the canoe since last I used it.  I found a pair of sunshades.  "Hhmm, where did these come from?"  I turned around to throw them in the garbage can behind me.  They weren't mine.  I have to wear prescription sunshades.

Nancy gasped.  "Are they Raybans?" she asked.

"Yeah, how did you know?"

After the initial shock wore off, we determined that possibly last summer, when she was helping me hang my kayak on the wall, above the canoe, the Raybans fell off her head into the canoe.  They belong to her husband who wasn't any too pleased that she lost them.

All packed and ready to go, I said goodbye to Morgan and Molly and promised them I would return and they would be well taken care of while I was away.  I tried to ignore their sad looks.

We ended up camping at Fish Creek Ponds, a state run campground just east of the village of Tupper Lake.  We had a nice site on the water.

Saturday morning, as on ANY morning, my first priority is to get the coffee ready.  Darn, that percolator takes much longer than my Bunn coffeemaker at home!

We went for a canoe ride in the early afternoon.  Over the last 30 plus years, I have spent a lot of time paddling these waters.  There are so many neat little streams and ponds where motor boats can't get to and you can really enjoy the peace and tranquility of nature.

On Saturday afternoon, I received the following e-mail from the neighbor who was taking care of Molly and Morgan:

Not sure if you have email access out there in the wild....but Molly is such a sweety- she melts my heart. I swear I saw her roll her eyes at Morgan when Molly and I were playing a nice game of fetch and then Morgan came along and took the thing but didn't return it to me and just hopped all around with it in her mouth....I think I heard Molly say "Seriously Morgan, can't you just watch me and learn. If you want this human to play with you then you give the toy back to her- not jump all over like a crazy dog"  :-)

On Saturday night, we had kabobs for dinner.  We eat well on these trips!

We expected an uneventful trip home on Sunday. . . and it was, except for one minor bump in the road.  As we were coming around the bend in the road in the tiny hamlet of Floyd, NY, my jaw dropped as just ahead we saw a huge road block, with, no kidding, 10  police cars with their lights flashing.  I've never seen a road block with that many police.  As I pulled up to the officer, he asked me to pull over to the side of the road.  WHAT?  Not one to talk back to a law enforcement officer, I did what I was told, with no idea why he chose me, when all the other cars ahead of me were motioned on.

"May I have your license, registration, and insurance papers, please?" he asked.

At this point, visions of mistaken identify and all kinds of unpleasant things were bouncing around in my mind.  I grabbed my purse and produced the items he asked for.  It was then he told me that my vehicle inspection sticker had expired in May.

Some relief set in as he left the side of my car to go check out my identify on his computer.  At least he hadn't confused me with some fugitive from justice!

He returned and explained the paperwork.  I am to produce proof that my car was inspected - that will be done TODAY! - and then send the paperwork to the Court of Floyd, NY.  I will then hear back from them to know if I will be fined or not.  It was then that he told me, "You may get away with just a warning and no fine, since you have a clean record."  

Ha!  Yes, I am squeaky clean when it comes to matters of the law!  My last speeding ticket was over 20 years ago and that was in a state (that will remain anonymous) that does not like people from New York State.  They think everyone that lives in NYS is rich and they are not a wealthy state!

It was a fun weekend and I especially enjoyed the slow pace, listening to the loons on the water and the breeze blowing through the trees.

Monday, September 2, 2013

"Never, ever give up!"

Those are the words of Diana Nyack, who today, at the age of 64, became the first person to swim the 110 mile stretch from Cuba to Key West, Florida, without a shark cage.

You have to admire this woman.  Swimming that distance, in shark infested waters, along with jelly fish. . . uuggh. . . is not my idea of a fun time or even something I would aspire to.  I wouldn't even want to paddle that distance in my kayak or canoe, with a support team!  But she made the attempt five times before accomplishing her goal.

God bless her.  This is a lesson all of us can learn from, no matter what our age.