Wednesday, May 28, 2014

My Yard now ,ART, Name Strips and the BEST Guacamole Recipe ever!

Hello friends, I am back finally. We had Mark's Memorial at the church and my daughter gave a beautiful eulogy. I cried and so did everyone else, I don't know how she did it. 
After the Memorial, we had a lovely catered barbque dinner in my backyard and Mel and her husband Jeff paid for it. How is that for a loving friend? My friends Molly and Tina came along with Mel all flew in from California. Susan my cupcake friend  and her husband Esko came from Seattle  and drove back another five hours in the same day and Laurie drove clear over from Lopez Island with her husband Kit. Cousins and inlaws and friends all came and we had a lovely time. I still feel Mark in my home. We moved here in 1976, the same year our son was diagnosed with leukemia. Mark and I were married 45 lovely years. I miss him so very much. We all do.

Our lot is a third of an acre and I have planted many flowers and bushes and plants. My friends are buying a flowering tree for us to plant with Mark's ashes. He asked for this specifically. So I will be going in to pick one out when the rain goes away. I am thinking dogwood or hawthorn. You can see a small dogwood I have in my backyard now. Our daughter gave it to us for our 25th anniversary.
I still have another case of blue bottles and am going to try to drill more hole in the bottle tree above. I have two of them and the one has tons and tons of bottles on it. In case you do not know, bottle trees were made in the south in the slave days as they believed that evil spirits would go into the bottle and could not get out. Works for me. I love the blue with all of the green in the garden and the red bike and a large fountain I have. Tons of work but worth it.
My neighbor Connie came over and helped me plant things in my flower garden and also helped me clean out half the garage and get rid of lots of "stuff." That evening I invited her over and I made the recipe below and hot tortilla chips and some crackers and bread. I had a bottle of wine and we had a nice end to the day. This recipe is lovely. I doubled the avacados. Enjoy!

GRILLED CORN, AVOCADO AND TOMATO w/ HONEY LIME DRESSING (Please SHARE so it will save to your timeline. You can refer back to recipe later).

1 pint grape tomatoes
1 ripe avocado
2 ears of fresh sweet corn
2 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped
Honey Lime Dressing
Juice of 1 lime
3 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp honey
Sea salt and fresh cracked pepper, to taste
1 clove garlic, minced
Dash of cayenne pepper

Grilled Corn, Avocado and Tomato Salad

Remove husks from corn and grill over medium heat for 10 minutes. The corn should have some brown spots and be tender and not mushy. Cut the corn off the cob then scrape the cob with the back of your knife to get the juices. Set aside and let cool. Slice the tomatoes in half. Dice the avocado and chop the cilantro.
Honey Lime Dressing

Add all the dressing ingredients in a small bowl and whisk to combine. Set aside.
Combine the sliced tomatoes, avocado, cilantro and grilled corn and honey lime dressing and mix gently so everything is evenly coated. Be careful not to mash the avocados. Let the salad sit for 10-15 minutes to let flavors mingle
And for a good laugh, look at this!
I have asked those people who prayed for us and supported us through Mark's brain cancer to please send me a 2 1/2 inch x 6 1/2 inch jello colored piece with their name on it and city if you have room. My address is 1521 N.Argonne #276, Spokane Valley, WA 99212-2555
I plan to make a
 quilt called "Hugs and Prayers" with them and would like anyone who did pray or send notes etc., to please give you your info for the quilt.
Thank you most sincerely

Along with the strips some people sent bright fabrics to go in and a few sent some random blocks to add to this...the colors are going to be fabulous and I have some fun ideas...hope you will be a part of it too


  1. Mary Lou, I've bee thinking a lot of you and ark recently and hoping to see you do a post soon. How delightful to see one as I'm about to head off to bed after receiving my girlfriend blocks today that you and Connie made.

    Your garden always delights me when I see your photos and wondered how large it was and now I know. May you find peace within its boundaries and many memories of Mark and your family, they will last you a lifetime.

    Expect a fabric strip from me in the future along with a larger girlfriend block.

    Take time to get healthy and many thanks to .connie for all she has done for you and Mark she is a true friend,

  2. Welcome back Mary Lou - you have been missed and prayed for too.

    Thank you for the lovely pictures and recipe and especially for letting us know your continued journey. You have amazing friends because YOU and Mark are amazing.

    I would be proud to add a strip to your new quilt - thank you for the opportunity.

  3. It is wonderful that your friends could be there for you. Your gardens are beautiful, I would love to do my backyard into a garden retreat.


  4. Such a beautiful, beautiful yard filled with life's many, good friends, hard work with helping hands of others, and so many wonderful, wonderful memories. I know your life is so very, very different now, and it will always feel that someone and something is missing..because he just is..but you have so many, many gifts and blessings that love will fill you up and be a buffer all around you! Some things we can see and some things (like my signature on my piece of fabric!) we can't. But they are all still there. Feel Mark near you always, because he is..right there in your heart.

  5. Welcome back! I know the journey to this point has been difficult but you made it. After my father died, my mother simply continued to talk to him because she felt he was there - almost. She said after all the years they were married, she pretty well knew how he'd reply and it just made her feel better. We gave her one of those big body pillows and Mom said it was just right to snuggle up to when she slept.

    The recipe sounds wonderful!! I'll add that I have the gene that causes cilantro to taste like soapsuds (really) so I omit that ingredient for obvious reasons.

    Love your garden photos and the Art History!

    Fabric strips from me will be in the mail soon. I think your plan to make a colorful Hugs and Prayers quilt is a stellar idea.

    Prayers continue for all who loved Mark.

    Big hugs!

  6. I hate to see a blog without a comment. I'm really surprised that the very popular blogs, like yours. with lots of followers ever goes without a comment... Then I tried to write this one.
    There are no words that I can write that will console you. Just know that it all will get better with time. I lost my daughter to breast cancer over a year ago... still crying now, but I don't cry all the time anymore. She fought so valiantly and was an inspiration to lots of people - maybe that was her purpose in life. (She was a volunteer on school, and at the food bank and had just taken up quilting... so she had lots of purpose.) I miss her terribly.
    Thank you for your blog - all the cheery sayings and pictures helps me a lot.
    Sending a strip soon. Jello Yellow

  7. So glad to see you back on your blog again. I saw my strip in your pictures. Wow its going to be a fantastic Story Quilt! Marlynne Snare Folk Artist

  8. Love the simplification of art history! I lost my first husband to cancer after only 8 years of marriage. That was hard, but God had another man in mind for me to keep me company for the next 30+ years. It's going to be rough for you for a while, maybe a long while given how long you had Mark by your side. But you will be reunited with him eventually; hang onto that. <3

  9. Hi Mary Lou-
    I'm mailing my strip to you today. What a special quilt!! I've been thinking about you a lot! Hugs from Nebraska!