My Husband, the Snowplow Man

In the heart of a storm snow swirls and whipping wind blows drifts all over roads and driveways. As it accumulates I’m either at work or at home watching through my windows. The only time that I brave that kind of weather is when I have to work. But I know a man who is out in it constantly. He’s my husband and he’s the snowplow man.

 

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Taken from TimeWarpWife.com via Pinterest

 

 

 

 

 

My guy is one of thousands ( maybe more) of snowplow operators, who work tedious hours on end so you can travel safely on the road. As a matter of fact, last week we had two winter storms. One night he worked from 6:00 am to 4:00 am the next day with a couple of hours off in between, and another he plowed and sanded from 1:00 am until 7:00 am, after working all day. Yet ,he never complains but continues to serve his community with a profound love for the job.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Our snowy yard

 

 

 

 
Do you notice and acknowledge the hefty snowplows that push mounds of snow? All winter town and state plow operators lay down salt or sand, push endless amounts of snow and sometimes help people that are stuck off the roads or in snow banks. Their commitment to work is unreal. Here I am nestled in a warm house watching outside like a snow globe and they sit high up in a rattling loud truck for hours on end. Many times they work without sleep or hot food.

 

 

One of my favorite books is  Kate Braestrup’s book, Beginner’s Grace. Kate is a Maine Fish and Game Chaplain who is called upon to pray for the deceased or for families of lost hikers and such. In her book she offers some great prayers and blessings for different occasions. One prayer she shares is to be said at the sound of a siren.
God grant courage to those who suffer,
Strength and peace to those who help.
Amen.

I always think of this prayer and adapt it when Tom and other snowplow operators are out in a storm.

 

God protect Tom and all snow removal operators

as they work steadily

Grant them courage and strength as they battle the snow

please help people slow down

On snowy, icy  roads

for everyone’s safety.
Amen

The next time you are driving in a snowstorm, please slow down and be cognizant of plow trucks! They are trying to do their jobs and take care of the roads and any vehicle complications can be a danger to you and them. Like you, most snowplow operators have families waiting for them at home.

 

God Bless and stay safe in winter storms.

 

Happy first anniversary to me! One year ago I launched my little blog about country life in my corner of the world. Thank you to all of you for reading my posts, commenting and following me! By allowing emails or following me, you invest and believe in me and I don’t take that lightly. It means the world to me for your time and motivates me to write. I look forward to sharing more stories with you as I move forward and welcome ideas or follow- ups to older posts. 🎉🎉🎉🎉

All My Best,
Heart and Soul ❤️

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Empty Nest Leftovers

 

 

 

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I never liked leftovers as a child or young adult. My mindset was that tasting more than once couldn’t be topped. I always thought why would I want the same dish the next day? Things have changed now that I’m a middle aged adult. Tastes and preferences change and that’s good, so leftovers won’t end up in the trash.

 

 

 

 

The last few months my husband and I are finding a new life, an empty nest with both our sons out of the house ( except for vacation breaks and summers). It’s been a challenge to try to cut down from cooking for four to two people. I tried it for a few weeks and didn’t seem to make enough for us. So since I have cooking for four embedded in my brain I’ve used it to my advantage! The leftovers serves as the meal next day. Either I take them to school for my lunch or we have them for dinner the next night.

 

 

 

 

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Who hasn’t taken a leftover meal and changed it or made it better by adding ingredients? The key to optimal flavor and variety is doctoring it up! Here are some suggestions that I’ve tried:

 

  • Take macaroni and cheese and add hamburger, diced fresh basil and garlic or add chopped up bacon instead
  • Crockpot chicken can have new life with a teriyaki sauce and served with a stirfry
  • Leftover beef can be enhanced with mushrooms and gravy and serve over egg noodles
  • Lasagna or  spaghetti can be doctored up by adding more sauce ( so it’s not dry) and another layer of cheese
  • Leftover fish or shrimp could go in a fish stew ( I’ve never made that)
  • Crockpot tenderloin pork can be pulled apart for barbecue sandwiches or bulkies. Just add barbecue sauce
  • Leftover hamburger can be used for Shepherd’s pie, Sloppy Joe’s, taco

 

 

 

 

Whatever is leftover, look at your refrigerator for ideas. Maybe fresh broccoli or carrots could be added. Any kind of cheese from extra sharp cheddar and Parmesan can spruce a meal up. You could add sliced peppers, onions, mushrooms and garlic. Use leftovers for a rice meal, just cook fresh rice pilaf and add vegetables. Leftover mashed and roasted potatoes can be paired with chicken, beef or pork and complete a meal with fresh veggies.

 

 

There are endless possibilities if you tap into your creative side. After all, a cook takes simple ingredients and magically transform them into an appetizing dish! We are enjoying our second day meal and it’s easy to do!

 

 

Happy cooking with those leftovers!

All My Best,
Heart and Soul ❤

 

A New Year

 

Happy New Year!

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As we near the end of the first week of 2017, we all embark upon uncharted waters. A new year is a mystery with many expectations and uncertainties. If you have a vacation get-away or surgery planned, then you may expect fun times or tiring healing. We can  plan, expect and foresee what the new year will hold. But do we really know what will happen?  What we can surely count on are the consistent  ups and downs of life. It’s like a dangerous and exhilarating roller coaster ride, that takes your breath away.  Every year that we encounter will be filled with happy moments, trials and tribulations and everything in between.

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Last year I started on my blogging adventure and had great results. My mini goal was to write at least twice or three times a week and I think with a few exceptions I’ve done that. I’ve always written but never took it seriously or took a step further until last January. I feel it’s a huge personal accomplishment.

Another mini goal was to attend a paint n’ sip. If you are unfamiliar with that, it’s simply an art class focusing on painting a chosen theme and everyone has wine or cocktails. I’ve always wanted to go to one but haven’t had the chance. This year a class was being held in my old hometown and my sister and I planned to go. I bought my ticket and waited anxiously for weeks. Unfortunately my sister couldn’t attend at the last minute and I was stuck with a ticket and untamed desire to go. I actually went to the class ALONE! As I walked in all I could see was groups of chatty, happy women and a kind instructor in the front of the room. It was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done but I did it! I walked in and started talking to a few ladies and actually met two nice ladies from Vermont, who asked me to sit with them. I’m so proud that I swallowed my pride and embarrassment and went, for I would’ve missed out on a fantastic opportunity and my first painting wasn’t that bad either.

You probably have already read a few magazine or news articles based on fresh ideas and setting goals for the new year. Every January we are bombarded with unique ideas and self help guidance, as some people set resolutions and some don’t even bother. I haven’t made a resolution in a few years, for the first week I always break it and thoughts of the goal fades away as February rolls around. It’s not that I can’t commit because I have kept many commitments in my life, but it’s just I don’t have the motivation to keep my goal. Losing weight happens easier if you don’t really think about it but change your lifestyle, so that resolution has never worked for me. Many of my resolutions haven’t worked because I just didn’t want them bad enough.

Have you made a new year resolution?  Maybe you made a firm goal, to quit smoking or lose weight. If you are similar to me and don’t take on some unsurmountable resolutions, why not switch it up? For a change I set mini goals or bucket list items ( I know many people are sick of hearing of “bucket lists”, but I love them because they entice you to do it now or you may never do it). I believe setting mini goals is less pressure and more fun so they must be light hearted, fun or something you really want to try or learn.

First I wish to go to Mount Washington via the Cog Railroad, a historic train that chugs up the high elevation. It’s an experience that I haven’t had and would love to see the view from up there. My husband thinks that his family went when he was really little but he doesn’t remember it. Secondly I long to learn knit.  My interest in knitting goes back to memories of my Nan Gould knitting me mittens every year. She always asked me what color I wanted and made me a fresh pair every fall. It meant a lot to me that she handmade me these and poured so much love into each stitch.My grandpa used to roll up the yarn for her and I remember it well and thinking how kind and loving he was for doing that. Lastly I want to try a new food, sushi! I have never wanted to try it until now and expect that I may dislike it, but do I really know?

Whatever your plan or goals are for the year, I wish you to live and thrive in  peace and happiness. I wish you new experiences and places to explore. I pray that you and your family will be healthy this year and handle any health scare with strength and resolve. Lastly I hope that you make lasting and fun memories that will stay in your heart for years to come!

All My Best,

Heart and Soul