Pain and Bliss

I have been called Anne of Green Gables my entire life, with the occasional Pollyanna along the way. I was honored by the Anne bit because she was my absolute hero as a girl, but I found the Pollyanna label was usually intended as a put down, a reference to my determined nature to find something good in everything. For a while there I was embarrassed and tried to harden myself and develop such charming qualities as pessimism and sarcasm. Neither sat well with me and I finally realized that being a Pollyanna is not such a bad thing after all, so long as I use it to highlight reality, not escape from it.

Today I'm going to subject you to a bit of Pollyanna-ish-ness. :-) I've been in so much physical pain the last couple of days that even my normally sunny nature disappeared in blinding headaches and tears of distress, and it's time to bring her back. :-) While the pain was real, so too were the lovely bits, the shining little moments of happiness and delight that I'm very, very grateful for.

An absolutely wonderful visit with my rellies visiting from Canada! We met Saturday morning at my folks' house for a fabulous brunch: fried potatoes and sausage, scrambled eggs, toast with peanut butter and jelly, and coffee. Delish! Then we were off to town for a few hours of treasure hunting in our favorite thrift and deal stores. I was so happy to find my favorite tea on sale for only $2 a box!

At the thrift store I found two darling sundresses, a funky pair of new fuchsia snakeskin flats, and a totally glam cocktail ring that cheers my heart every time I look at it. :-) We had such good visits and laughs and parted with big hugs and promises to see each other again soon. :-)

That night my phone rang and it was my brother Evan who is deployed in the Middle East!! YAY! He got this handy-dandy thing called a Magic Jack that allows him to have an American cell phone number for us to call free any time. He never fails to encourage and inspire me, making me laugh AND feel like I can take on the
world. :-)

I found an oh so cheery primrose to take home for only 99 cents! :-)


 I was able to finish a good book, play Scrabble on Facebook with my friend Tabby, have great phone chats with a dear friend, and last night I was well enough to get up and make some yummy food for the week.

I juiced apples, poured the liquid into a glass and laughed because it looked just like beer.

I gathered garlic, parsley, black pepper and diced butternut squash, tossed them all together with a bit of flour and a few glugs of olive oil and slow-roasted them for two-hours. Wow - the smell was amazing and the sweet, garlicky chunks melted into a savory gratin with a toasted crust.

I collected all the leftover bits and bobs from my fridge and made a lovely Black Bean Sausage Soup with tomatoes, cilantro, lime, green pepper, green onion, garlic and smoked sausage. Mmm. :-)

So, I'm counting my blessings today and counting down the hours to the chiropractor tomorrow! :-)

Happy Monday, dear ones! :-)


  1. The butternut squash looks really good. Happy Monday!

  2. I'm so glad your visit with your relatives was fun and that you got a phone call from your brother! That must have made your weekend :D.

    The food looks excellent. I want in on some of that butternut squash action!

  3. Thank you, Amuse. :-) It was delicious!

  4. Thank you, Joanne! It was so great to talk with rellies AND my brother. :-)

  5. i love the smell of butternut squash roasting as well. this looks and sounds like it was a delicious way to start the week!

  6. Isn't it lovely, Cocina? It even smelled good being cut up. :-)

  7. Krista....this was just a delightful post...a sweet spirit to "count your blessings" instead of hosting a "pity party"! You are an inspiration.....and loved your butternut squash!

  8. Thank you, Mom Toney. :-) I'm trying my best, figuring it's OK to have a little cry now and then if necessary. :-) So glad you like the squash. Mmm, it's so good! I have one bowl left for lunch. :-)

  9. You are one of the most amazing people I have come across. I am sorry you had such pain and hope it is gone.

    Please be a Pollyanna. That is the way to be happy as long as one has her eyes open, along the path.

    You be a ray of sunshine and take more glorious photos.

    I must admit to you, I can't come here, whenever I want because I know when I visit, I can't leave. Between your fascinating sharing
    and you delicious recipes and your alluring photographs, I need time to just sit and read and look.

    Who has time like that?

    To make it a bit more complicated, every time, I came here, I got kicked out. My computer would crash. Such frustration.

    I am glad I could get here tonight and enjoy.

  10. I'm so sorry you were in so much pain, I wish this could be fixed.

    I love it that you find positives, Pollyanna is gorgeous and I love her.

    What a cool pic of your brother!

    Take care honey,

  11. Oh, dear Chaya, I'm SO glad you were able to come by tonight. :-) Your words were just what I needed to cheer my heart and make me feel thoroughly hugged. :-)

  12. Thank you, dear DJ. :-) Docs don't know how to fix it yet, but they're still researching and maybe one day there will be a cure. :-) We'll keep hoping! :-)

    I'm so glad you like Pollyanna too. :-) I think she's a lovely little soldier.