{Recipes & Eats}

Bilbo and the Spiders, Banana Bread, and Purple Sage

Last week was our first week of school.  We went to our classes, I started working with my professor, and we worked on our little abode.  Over the weekend, we went hiking, we made good food, we lounged, and we slept in.

I promised myself I would not have an ugly-overwhelmed-by-how-much-we-have-to-do-this-semester-MELTDOWN.  Tragically, that didn’t happen.  I had one, and it was ugly.  Very ugly.  The next time you see Jared, you should probably give him a pat on the back and thank him for his contribution to society for being my stable and sound husband.  And give him an ice cream cone.  And thank him again.
Also last week, Deborah safely lived through an earthquake and hurricane.  After I started working my way back up from my emotional plummet I was reminded how grateful I am for life.  For the people I love.   For the small moments.  I know I have blogged about appreciating life’s details before, but I was reminded about them this weekend while I was texting with Deborah while Irene prepared to swirl through Jersey City.
Here are some things I was thinking about this weekend:

Banana bread.  With chocolate chips.  Chocolate chip banana bread always reminds me of my mom, because she makes a delicious loaf.  As a kid, we would scarf down as many slices as she would allow as soon as it was out of the oven.  I still end up with chocolate all over my chin and fingers.
Also, I got to use that super fabulous plate which I got with Grandma Goose in Nebraska.
Speaking of my mom and Grandma Goose, if you have a moment will you say a prayer for each of them?  My mom has been having trouble with the meniscus in one of her knees.  She’s in aquatic therapy (a form of therapeutic recreation, by the way.  If you missed it, that’s what my concentration is for my M.S.) and some other treatment plans.  I know that it is often more painful than she lets on.

Also, Grandma Goose was diagnosed with cancer at the beginning of this summer.  While she’s already had surgery to remove it, she is a couple weeks into a three month stretch of radiation.

I’m really thankful for both of them, and the attitudes they have during these challenges.

Over the weekend, Jared and I planted this pretty little purple sage bush.  We love sage.  We love how it smells, how it reminds of high dessert, how it will need very little maitinence.  I saw one of these bushes in Grandma Siffrings yard this summer and knew it would be great addition to our back patio.

I am thankful for a woman named Amanda that I met at church Sunday night.  It was nice to have an understanding conversation with someone that lives here, that’s been a student at SIU, and that appreciates the tension of being a Christian and a student here.  Let’s just say that all of my culture shock from the transition from Kuyper to SIU hasn’t completely melted away yet, so this conversation blessed me immensely.
The last thing I’ll mention here today (I should really do some homework, eh?) is that we went hiking over the weekend.  It was sort of like hiking through that crazy forrest in The Hobbit where Bilbo has to save all the dwarves from the gigantic life-sucking spiders.  There were a lot of spiders, everywhere.  Sometimes, I even feel like the forrest is in our house.  There are lot of insects here in Southern Illinois (I smashed one in the middle of the night in our bed two nights ago.  I was not pleased).
I am thankful that Jared is good at killing spiders.
… maybe I’ll start calling him Bilbo.
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