Wednesday, April 15, 2015

SPRING FLOWERS AND A REFRESHING SALAD RECIPE


Everything these days is a swirling mix of doing inventory for the lakehouse and picking out replacements for the floors and kitchen cabinets ...a huge job, and then working on the plans we had for this house in the spring.  Seriously, my head is spinning.  The inventory for the lake was mind boggling...what did they toss out in the clean up?  They didn't document that.  I do know the laundry room below the bathroom where the pipe burst took the brunt of the damage and that's where I kept my supply of sheets and towels and we had a ton.  Six twin beds alone in the house and Summerhouse, and I always kept multiple sets to change out so I didn't have laundry going round the clock when we had guests.  And we sleep sixteen so I had a tremendous amount of bath towels.   You don't think you have so much and then you go through the numbers and dollars.  Crazy.

That's just the lake stuff going on.  Besides trips to a few tile and home centers looking at cabinets and flooring for  there, I'm getting quotes on a new porch and driveway here and then some landscaping which we had been planning on doing for over a year. 

I was at Home Depot the other day (looking at flooring), and they had pansies on sale for 98 cents a pot.   This is about the only flower that you can plant during the "iffy" weather here in the upper Midwest.  I think they are pretty in this urn on my porch.











Creamy Cucumber Salad

Peel 2 English cucumbers (I leave a bit of green on them for color).  Cut in half and then again lengthwise.  Scoop out the seeds and lay them cut side down on a paper towel to soak up some of the water.  Meanwhile mix 1/4 cup plain Greek Yogurt and 1/4 cup sour cream.  Add 3 T. mayonnaise, 1/4 cup fresh dill or 1 T. dried, 3 T white vinegar, 1/2 t. sugar and a pinch of salt and pepper.  Chop up one scallion (or green onion) reserving some of the greens at the top.  Slice the cucumbers at 1/4 inch intervals so they look like half moons. Toss everything together.  Spoon into a pretty bowl and dust with a little of the dill and scallions. You may want to refrigerate for an hour for the flavors to meld, but I simply love it for how quickly it goes from prep to table.   SO refreshing!



I talked with my veterinarian about Milo the other day.  His biopsy was sent to a bigger lab and the results came back.  Not being able to quote Dr. B word for word...the type of cancer cells they see are not the sort that generally spread, so they are hopeful the sarcoma is contained within the tumor.  My guy will have the surgery May 4th.  I'm going to be a wreck, but the sooner they remove this, the better.  When I pet him and my hand reaches this golf ball size tumor on his leg, I want to scream.  Go away.  Leave my precious dog alone.  He has many years ahead of him.  We would be lost without him.  I know...there is hope and I'm focusing on that.  Keep those prayers coming.

Jane xx 

45 comments:

Stacey said...

So glad you are having beautiful weather! We are too. :)

Thank goodness little Milo will be well soon. I know it is heart wrenching to know something isn't right.

Now, congratulations on your new article writing gig!! How exciting, Jane. You definitely do have a wonderful way with words. So happy for you.

Terri Steffes said...

My daffs are already spent, so i was happy to see yours in a vase and so beautiful! I will have your sweet pup in my prayers, ours had surgery two weeks ago and it just tears you up to see them like that! So exciting to be in print like that! Congrats!

Leslie Harris said...

Oh Jane I will be saying lots of prayers for Milo, I know it's so hard when our little fur babies are sick.
And congratulations on your article too! Oh my goodness that is so exciting. And what a wonderful addition you're going to be to the newspaper. I'm so happy for you.

Jane and Lance Hattatt said...

Hello Jane,

How exciting that you have your own column! You connect so well with your audience through your blog posts, so we are sure that this will be great success with your readers, whoever they may be!

So much happening at the moment that we are not in the least surprised that your head is spinning......at least it is still on your shoulders!

Poor Milo. The prognosis sounds very promising so we do hope that it will work out for him. Having pets is such a responsibility as one must make decisions for them which are not always easy. We do so trust that all will be well.

Kathleen Grace said...

The weather has certainly been wonderful! Like you, I am spending more time outside, trying to get the yard in order and looking forward to planting the garden. I think we are a couple weeks behind you in blooming though, the forsythia isn't blooming here.
Your column in the paper is awesome! Congratulations on being, not only published, but a regular contributor!
I can only imagine all the details and decisions involved in fixing up the lake house, I know it's going to be beautiful when you are done though. Something to look forward to as you see work progress through the summer.
I am so glad Milo's tumor is non aggressive, I will be thinking of him, and you as he gets his surgery :)

Theresa said...

Happy to hear you are having good weather! I know that there is lots of work to get your lake house back but it is going to be worth it in the end:) That salad looks delicious! Have a blessed day dear friend!

Mary said...

Sounds like you are getting your ducks in a row regarding the lake house reno - such a lot of work though dear!
Love that you are now writing column for the newspaper - they couldn't have picked anyone better - I know you'll be great at this.

Hope things go well for sweet Milo and that he will soon be in tip top shape again.
Flowers are looking lovely - great to have spring at last isn't it.

Take care - much love.
Mary X

Primitive Stars said...

Morning Jane, lovely flowers, mine still not up but the weather is warming up. Praying Milo is ok, so worrisome when our pets are not well...Blessings Francine.

Row homes and Cobblestones said...

Sweet Jane,
Pretty Pansies, they are my favorite Spring flower and also Fall flower. I try to buy the deepest purple for the Fall so they look cool for Halloween.
My Mom used to make that same recipe of a cucumber salad. Very refreshing with the dill. Love serving it when we host a Spring and Summer buffet brunch, always a favorite.
How your husband is feeling about potatoes is how I've been feeling about mushrooms. Go figure!
Jane I am happy the vet feels he can remove the tumor and Milo will be fine. I'll pray for Milo on May 2nd.
How cool is that you getting a monthly newspaper column. I'm proud for you. Can you attach a link every month to your post so we can all enjoy reading it in blogland? You rock girlfriend!
XOXO,
Vera

Barb @ Bella Vista said...

Such beautiful flowers, Jane. Just love them.

Barb

Tricia said...

I absolutely love this time of year…the start of everything blooming and knowing that warmer weather and lots of flowers are just ahead!

Congratulations on your newspaper column! That is so exciting. I love the chattiness of your writing...it feels so friendly. You are a great addition to their team :)

So sorry to read about Milo's illness. I hope everything goes well for him. Big hugs!

Art and Sand said...

Lovely flowers.

Cucumbers are so good for us and they provide me with the crunch that I crave.

Courtney@Golden Boys and Me said...

Congratulations on getting published, Jane! Such exciting news. Your spring flowers are so very lovely. Prayers and thoughts for you and sweet Milo.

Kathy @ Creative Home Expressions said...

Your Spring is looking like ours here in Ohio, Jane. I guess that makes sense since we are not that far away from each other. : )

I'm sure it seems neverending at this point in trying to figure out what you need, replacing things that need replacing, etc. for the lake house. I know you will miss it, but maybe you take the stress off yourselves by not worrying about having it completed in time for use this year. That's probably hard since I'll bet you've gone there every Summer for years!

Your poor Milo. Our Husky had a tumor on her leg and it was getting gradually worse looking. She was just shy of 15 and the vet said he wouldn't operate on a dog of her age. We wound up putting her to sleep in February because she was constantly crying.

Kathy Moreland said...

Congrats on your publication!! Great news! Glad for the news on Milo! He'll be fine!! Your flowers are gorgeous. Our forsythia (my daughter's) still has some blooms, but the tulips have come and gone. Wish they lasted longer. The pollen here is in full force! I know you have lots going on working on both your places. Take care, and enjoy the sunshine!!

Bluebird49 said...

Look at you, Missy! Congratulations on your published article--I would be as proud as a peacock about that---wish I could see it even more clearly. (Blasted cataracts!) This is something you may be able to pursue in other papers and magazines...that would be lovely." Our Jane--Roving reporter on all things beautiful and informative." (I'll be your agent! ;) )

Glad to hear about Milo's cells being contained. Of course I'll be praying for our little guy. I know you are so worried.

Cucumber salad looks awesome...sounds so much like spring and summer. Looked very pretty, too.

Sonia said...

Love all your happy yellow flowers! Daffodils and Forsythia just make me smile! How fun that you were asked to write an article for your lake paper! Enjoy your beautiful weather!

Lisa @ Texas Decor said...

Congrats on your column! What a fun and interesting thing to look forward to! Still sending prayers for sweet Milo. I'm so happy you're getting warmer weather! Love your flowers!

Doreen@househoneys said...

I'm very optimistic that Milo will be ok. I can feel it.

That's a fabulous article that was published! Congratulations! I know your head is spinning with everything you have on your plate right now, I honestly don't know how you do it. Any one of these things by themselves would be enough for me to handle. :/

Our weather has just started to warm up, but as I'm sitting here looking out the window I don't see the forsythia in bloom at all. Not even buds yet. The rectangle vase is cool, and yes, you need to clean out your closets more ;)

xxx

Gypsy Heart said...

Congratulations on your writing assignment! I think that's awesome! The flowers are all beautiful and I'm so glad you're finally having some decent weather. Our days vary, beautiful and in the 70's and then 80's, humid and storms. That's spring in Texas!

Prayers continue for Milo. It's just so hard to have any health issues with our fur babies.

Have a wonderful weekend!
xo
Pat

Jenny S. said...

God Bless Milo.

Debbie Freitag said...

Congratulations on your new gig! Awesome and funny how blogging can lead to a new career! Now you can travel to all the lakes in MI and consider the trips a tax write off for research! Saying prayers for Milo. I'm sure he will be just fine but it is so sad when our furry babies get sick. They never complain like humans do.

Mary@mydogsmygardenandmary said...

Oh Jane I am so sorry about your little doggie having to have surgery. I will say prayers for him. Everything will be fine.
WOW so much to replace at the Lake House. I guess we should all have inventory of all the things we own. Never know when bad things happen and we can't always remember everything.
So glad that Spring has arrive in IL. It feels more like summer here. All my flowers are in bloom. I am really worried about the drought - I guess I will let the grass die and try and save my 100 rose bushes/ would be very expensive to replace all of them. I sure don't want to have a $500 fine for water usage. Always something to worry about.
Prayers are being sent for a speedy and safe recovery for your dog.
Take care and have a wonderful weekend.
Hugs
Mary

Linda @ Itsy Bits And Pieces said...

Congratulations on your writing job...how fun! I will keep your dog in my prayers...I know it must be very hard for you.

Barbara F. said...

Congrats on being published! The readers will enjoy your style. Anyway we can find it online? I love cukes in a salad like that. Saying a prayer for Milo poor doggie, he will be fine.

Debbie said...

Wow! Congratulations on being published, Jane! how exciting! A dream come true for you.
So happy to hear Milo will be okay.
Your Spring flowers look wonderful. Still waiting here. we are about three weeks behind you in that department.
The salad looks so refreshing, and tasty for this season.
So much to think about with the lake house. Your brain must be on overload. In the end...it will all work out for the best. I'm sorry you have to go through all of this though.
Have a good weekend honey bunch.
Debbie
xo

Nancy's Notes said...

Hi Miss Jane! Congratulations on your own column! Does not surprise me, you have such a way with words and know how to tell a grand story! Thinking and praying your Milo.
Have a great weekend, busy lady!

Nancy

Cheryl @ TFD said...

I love cucumbers and they are good for us, too. They are a nice alternative to the usual green salad. Congrats on your article being published, that is way cool! I'll put Milo on my prayer list. I know how precious our fur babies are to all of us. Have a nice day!

Beth said...

Hi Jane, The first thing I noticed on your post was your pretty urn filled with pansies. Wow, are you ever busy with lakehouse and home improvements. Sorry it is necessary at your lake home but thankful for insurance. Your story is a reminder to me that I should photograph everything in our house again and put it in the safety deposit box, just in case. Your forsythias and daffodils are gorgeous! Love them! The creamy cucumbers look fantastic; it's not something I think about making except when I have cukes from the garden. You changed my thinking though. Congratulations on your writing! Very cool! The article and pics look very nice, very professional. Praying for Milo and you too.
Hugs, Beth

Chel @ Sweetbriar Dreams said...

At last, spring has sprung for you. Isn't it lovely to see those lovely sunshine flowers smiling at us!! I'm glad to read that things are moving on a little for the lakehouse, it is amazing how much we have really when we think about it. Congratulations on the article! Well done you!! Also, please give Milo a hug from me. I lost my Coco last weekend and the wrench is unbearable. Take care xx

Maria Elena said...

Jane, I love your flowers. How pretty!I hope Milo gets to feeling better soon. Congratulations on your article! You are a wonderful writer, so I know your column will be very successful. I hope you are surviving "new grandma duty". me, just barely! LOL Have a great weekend! Maria

Susie said...

Hi Blondie, Congrats on being published. That is so nice. I love all your yellow flowers. I hope your Milo will be fine once he has the surgery. Blessings, xoxo,Susie

GLENDA CHILDERS said...

Oh no ... you had a pip burst at the lake house? I am so sorry to hear this. But exciting to see your newspaper article.

Fondly,
Glenda

Lori E said...

My husband loves cucumber salad. Your sounds so light and refreshing.
I too planted pansies in my front pots. I wasn't sure if the deer would eat them or not but they have left them alone.
Hugs to Milo.

Lori E said...

Silly me. I forgot to congratulate you on the newspaper article. How exciting is that!!!!
Well done.

Carolynn Anctil said...

Hi Jane!
I'm so sorry to hear your dog is suffering and glad to hear the prognosis is as good as can be hoped for.

I love square vases and have a set of three that I display in our ensuite.

I'm envious of all your flowers. Our grass is greening up, but nothing more than buds on the trees at present.

Nice to see a familiar face in the Over 40 group. :o) And, I do know you've been visiting me for a while. Thank you. xoxo
Carolynn

Carla from The River said...

Hi,
I am so excited for you with your newspaper article. That is wonderful and a dream of mine as well. Hip, Hip, Hoary!

I will be praying for Milo.
xx oo
Carla

Cindy (Applestone Cottage) said...

OMG Jane!!
I am so proud of you! Way to go gf, that is so cool and so neat, you will be famous around that area!
Our daffs are blooming, the tulips, not yet. We had like 84 on Tuesday and it's going to be 30 degrees cooler this week.
Your forsythia is gorgeous! Mine looks like crap.
Hoping all goes well with Milo.
I e-mailed you the other day about our get together. Let me know if you got it. Hugs, hugs friend,
Cindy

Kit said...

Congrats on the article! I am so thrilled for you. All my bestest wishes for Milo. I know what you mean, I would be lost without my Sam Cat. Kit

Poppy said...

Jane,

KUDOS on the column!! How exciting and rewarding! You are one talented multi-tasker, my friend, with so much on your plate, you manage to get it all done, and well.

Your salad looks and sounds refreshing and delicious. I will try it, but without the sour cream, since they don't sell it here, in Greece.

Prayers and positive thoughts for your sweet Milo and his surgery. He is so well loved; I'm sure he will have great strength for his big day.

Have a wonderful week!

xoxo
Poppy

Melanie said...

You guys sure have your work cut out for you with re-doing the lake house. I can't imagine. I need to get a quote for our driveway this spring/summer, too. It's a mess. Thick cracks and crevices in it. Your cucumber side dish looks so refreshing. I love cukes and this is a good and different way to enjoy them, so thanks for the recipe. Congrats on getting your article published in the lake newspaper! Isn't it fun to see your name in something published? Hope Milo is continuing to do well on his seizure medication. I know you're nervous about his surgery; I will be praying that all goes well with that. Zippo had a cancerous tumor removed from his side years ago and is still doing just fine. I will pray the same will hold true for Milo. xoxo

xinex said...

Wow! You are now a publisher, so excited for you! But I am not a bit surprised, you are so good with words. Your flowers are gorgeous....Christine

Nancy Crowley said...

Hi Jane,
I am so impressed by your new writing job, truly a wonderful thing. You must be so proud of that first piece. Congrats! And I am glad that the surgery for Milo has been booked, I will send big prayers out the universe! xx Nancy

Traci said...

That's so exciting to get to write for the paper! Congrats! Glad to hear some good news about Milo.

Penny said...

Jane, Congratulations on the writing gig. How wonderful for you. You have a way with words so I am not surprised.

xo, Penny