Tuesday Photo Challenge – Good Shape

My husband and I spent last week with Mercy, Will, and Autumn. On Saturday, February 17, we went hiking in Silver Falls State Park, Oregon. One area is the Trail of Ten Falls which is a 7-mile loop. This loop is a moderately difficult hike with unpaved trails, some muddy areas, steep sections and an overall elevation change of 800 feet.

The photos included in this post are two Falls. South Fall is a 177 feet waterfall where we could walk behind the Fall underneath a rocky canyon. The Lower South Fall is 93 feet, descending from South Fall with stairs. Walking behind the South Fall reminded me of walking behind the Niagara Fall years ago!

It was a heavy rainy day and we all were soaking wet. The three of them wore hiking boots, so it was easier to walk in the muddy area. I was not prepared to go hiking, and I wore regular running shoes. My shoes were wet and muddy and my toes were almost frozen.

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We were in good shapes and found no difficulty with the hike. Mercy gave birth to Autumn four and a half months ago. She has a remarkably fast recovery from the pregnancy and birth.

I was impressed with the spectacular views of the Falls and the mossy forest.

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Frank’s Dutch Goes to Photo – Tuesday Photo Challenge – Good Shape

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Tuesday Photo Challenge – Decay

Frank at Dutch Goes the Photo: Tuesday Photo Challenge – Decay

My husband and I joined my sister Yolanda and her husband Patrick to go to China several years ago. Patrick’s dad had Alzheimer’s disease. Patrick wanted his dad and his uncle got together before his dad’s memory faded any further.

His uncle and the family were relocated by the government to a nearby village. The former village was demolished and transformed into a giant cement factory. His uncle was assigned a two-story small house that included a courtyard with a well and a patch of vegetable garden. They raised chickens in three cages. It seemed like they were given just enough to live a self-sustained life.

The decayed and crumbling walls and roofs of the houses received no attention or maintenance. I saw older people sitting around to wait for days to go by without going anywhere. Kids on the dirt road entertained each other with a few pieces of rocks they could find.

The visit was a great experience to make me think of my life in the land of plenty and be grateful for the freedom I have, something not to be taken for granted.

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The cement factory in the distance

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Lynton joined the kids to play rockets (firecrackers)

 

Tuesday Photo Challenge – Delicious

The theme for Tuesday Photo Challenge is Delicious!

My husband likes ultra-thin crust pizza. All the pizzas we have had in the restaurants or bought from the stores are not thin enough for him. When we visited Mercy, Will, and Autumn during Christmas, we finally went to a restaurant in Portland, Oregon that makes ultra-thin crust pizza to his liking.

Last year, He started making homemade pizza. He watched videos to get different recipes. He only gave me the ingredients of his first recipe. Since then he kept a secret for the changes he made in the subsequent attempts. By the fifth try, he considered that he had perfected his recipe for his desired thinness and taste of the crust.

As for toppings, he always wants extra cheese and extra pepperoni. Eating too much cheese upset my stomach, so my portion of the pizza was always different, depending on the vegetables available in the refrigerator. I used to like Canadian beacon, so for the first try, I asked to have a thin layer of cheese with pineapple pieces. Subsequently, when he made pizza again, I chose different vegetable toppings on my portion.

Whatever secret recipe he has, his homemade pizza is super delicious. Oh, we made blackberry pie to go with the pizza.

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Frank’s Dutch Goes the Photo: Tuesday Photo Challenge – Delicious

White Christmas 2017

I have problem with my new laptop, was not able to do anything with my blog for days. I feel like I’m cripled. The battery stopping charging right after Christmas. I had to wait until coming back to California to take it back to the store. The laptop is only two months old, so it is under full warrenty. I’m using my hugsband’s desktop computer.

I have some backtracking to do.

We had a white Christmas. When we were still in the air on Christmas Eve, looking down to Portland area, we saw a blanket of snow. I was so excited, because I haven’t had a white Christmas for 30 years. The snow only last for one day.

We open the gifts on Christmas day. Mercy and Will got many new board games from Autumn. She knows mommy and daddy love to play games. My husband and I learned one new game each day while we were in Portland for the whole week. My daughter went back to work after maternity leave. I had a chance to watch Autumn all days on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Tuesday was Mercy’s birthday, so we went out in the evening for dinner and had cakes and pie for dessert. Then went home to play a game.

Mercy had Thursday and Friday off becuase she only went back to work part-time. During her days off, she went to the gym and started working out and getting back in shape. Friday evening, Lynton and I watched Autumn so that Mercy and Will could go on a movie and dinner date. They had such a good time.

We left on Saturday, but in the future years, we’ll go back to see the baby every four to six weeks. It’s such a joy watching her growing up, learning to grab things with both hands, looking at herself in the mirror and smiles, and started cooing and laughing. We don’t want to miss any of these precious moments.

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Weekly Photo Challenge – 2017 Favorites in Review

“This week, we’re proposing something a little different to celebrate the end of the year. Instead of a specific theme or topic, we invite you to share your most meaningful photo from 2017” – Ben Huberman

It is our tradition to watch the New Year around the world and here is the New York city welcoming the Year 2017.

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In February, when we walked around our favorite Laguna Lake, we watched the lovely family of Mama ducking and her seven ducklings.

In March, we visited Mercy and Will in Portland, Oregon and found out the exciting news that Mercy was pregnant.

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In April, a group of friends from church visited the President Nixon Library.

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In May, we visited Mercy and Will again and they treated me for an enjoyable Mother’s Day Brunch.

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In June, a group of ladies from church went on a short trip of “walk and brunch” in Newport Beach.

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In July, we started several home projects. One of them was to paint the interior of our home.

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In August, Mercy’s friends gave her a wonderful Baby Shower. She was showered with abundant blessings.

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On September 28, we welcomed the precious baby Autumn. She brought so much joy into our life.

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On October 15, Autumn had her first pumpkin patch visit.

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In November, we had a great family gathering of Thanksgiving dinner.

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In December, Miriam participated in her fifth year of performance of Handel’s Messiah.

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Mercy went back to work two days ago after twelve weeks of maternity leave. She missed Autumn so much and was happy to pick her up from the daycare.

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Weekly Photo Challenge: 2017 Favorites

SoSC December 2, 2017

Linda G Hill’s Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “cramp.” 

Thanksgiving 2017 had come and gone. This is a little recap of the detail. It has something to do with decorating the Christmas tree. I’ll get to it toward the end of the post.

I was hosting the Thanksgiving dinner this year. The previous time I hosted it was in 2009. That was the year I received the chemotherapy and radiation for my melanoma cancer from January to July. I know, I was so brave to host the dinner for 28 people. With the limited energy, it took me two months to get the house ready. Mercy helped me do most of the cooking.

Well, for this year, I couldn’t plan too far in advance. I went to Portland, Oregon for six weeks on three different trips when Mercy gave birth to her first baby, and later I helped to take care of Autumn. The first three weeks of being new parents were quite a learning experience to Mercy and Will. Will went back to work after two weeks of paternity leave. He continues to help when Autumn wakes up in the middle of the night for feeding.

When I came home a week before Thanksgiving, I rushed to the stores to get fall season decoration. I stopped by many stores, all I saw was Christmas items. So, I decided to have Christmas decoration. Why not? Mercy, Will, and Autumn arrived four days before Thanksgiving. Our old, artificial Christmas tree was all worn out and we bought a new one – white color. Throughout the years when I decorated the Christmas tree, I cramped the tree with several strings of lights, many strands of garlands, and years of collections of ornaments. This year, after I assembled the tree, Mercy helped to decorate it. She only used two strings of lights, one strand of garland, and twenty ornaments. She liked the simple look. You know what? I like it also. I like the peaceful and quiet look of a simple tree.

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By the way, Autumn is two months old two days ago. She had her first immunization. Mercy said Autumn handled the shots well. “Good girl, Autumn!”

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Linda G Hill’s SoSC December 2, 2017

 

Share Your World – November 27, 2017

Cee’s Share Your World – November 27, 2017

Would you prefer a reading nook or an art, craft, photography studio?

I always wanted to have a Sunroom as my art studio as well as for my indoor plants. I like to paint in a room with good lighting. Painting in my backyard would be ideal, but I must put the easel, the paint, other materials, and tools away every day. A Sunroom would allow me to leave everything in the room. The sky, the trees, and flowers are always the sources of my inspiration in any creativity. In fact, a Sunroom could be my reading nook and a place for the indoor plants.

We had a quote this year to install a Sunroom. The one with glass roof costs $40,000, and the kind with glass windows without glass roof runs about $27,000. Do I want to pay that much money for an enclosed patio for painting, reading, and planting? I don’t think so. At the meantime, I paint in a room with good lighting.

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Tell how you are feeling today in the form of a weather report. (For example, partly cloudy, sunny with a chance for showers, etc.)

I feel sunny with the temperature of 75o Fahrenheit. The humidity is 70%. It’s an ideal weather. Too hot or too cold just keep me indoor for different reasons.

I went to the gym with my husband in the morning and had a good workout. In the afternoon, I went to a garden shop and bought a hibiscus plant with salmon flowers. It was a good day for me.

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If you could witness or physically attend any event past, present or future, what would it be?

I love the Russian composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky’s music. I listen to his music so much that when my daughter was four years old, she recognized the Swan Lake and Sleeping Beauty. For many years, my tradition was to watch The Nutcracker in Christmas.

Tchaikovsky’s collective body of work constitutes 169 pieces, including symphonies, operas, ballets, concertos, cantatas, and songs. Among his most famed late works are the ballets The Sleeping Beauty (1890) and The Nutcracker (1892).

Russian dancers Viktoria Tereshkina (as 'Odette-Odile') and Vladimir Shklyarov (as 'Prince Seigfried') perform in the Mariinsky Ballet production of Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky's 'Swan Lake' with revised choreography and staging (1950) by Konstantin Sergeyev after Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanovat. BAM Howard Gilman Opera House, Brooklyn, New York, January 15, 2015.
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For a composer who wrote so many beautiful and romantic fairytale ballet music, one would think that he had a healthy life.

He was struggling with his homosexuality and suffered from depression. His last composition was The Symphony No. 6 in B minor, Op. 74, Pathétique. It was his most emotional and melancholy music which was written between February and the end of August 1893. He led the first performance of the Symphony in October, nine days before his death on November 6, 1893.

If I could, I would love to attend Peter Tchaikovsky’s first performance of The Symphony No. 6 in B minor.

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What inspired you or what did you appreciate this past week?  Feel free to use a quote, a photo, a story, or even a combination. 

Mercy, Will, and baby Autumn came to visit us from Sunday to Friday last week. They came to celebrate my birthday, the day before Thanksgiving. They spent Thanksgiving with us along with sixteen family members in our house. It was good to see my husband’s family members. I was also happy to see my sister’s family.

Autumn is a good traveler. She slept all the way through the two-hour flight from Portland, Oregon to southern California. She slept most of the way home.

Cee’s Share Your World – November 27, 2017