Friday, June 29, 2012

The Awesome Power of PRAYER

Thank you for your heartfelt and POWERFUL Prayers today for my brother Stephen!

They worked!!!

  I am so happy, humbled and grateful to be able to tell you that the surgery was a success, thanks to your prayers, the donor and the amazing surgical team at UCSF.

After 28 years, he is no longer a diabetic.

To be cured of a disease is nothing short of a miracle. 

Those of us that held vigil during the 4 hour surgery witnessed that miracle and are awestruck.

You were all a great part of this miracle and my family and I will forever be eternally grateful.

I cannot tell you how much your comments and personal emails sustained us today.

God Bless You All

I love you 

Thursday, June 28, 2012


Today around 3pm my brother Stephen got the call he's been waiting for since his name was put at the top of the donor list several weeks ago.

(The ADA's Napa Valley Tour de Cure last month)
When I saw his name come across my cell phone I knew he was calling to tell me it was time...

It was surreal, I didn't know how to feel.

Our family was ready, we had just attended an anointing of the sick mass a week earlier where we laid our hands upon his head and prayed in gratitude for the yet unknown donor's organs and the successful outcome of his impending surgery.

He was told to be at UCSF within 4 hours.
The young donor is on life support.
It's hard to deal with the mixed emotions I'm feeling of both extreme happiness and gratitude coupled with intense sadness and loss.

It's times like this that I cling to my faith and it strengthens me...

Please join me in praying for both my brother and the donor who is giving him the gift of life.

Stephen is scheduled for surgery at 10:00AM tomorrow morning.

 My family and I thank you for your love and prayers.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

An Artistic Fantasy

 This garden/art installation blew me away...

It's a grove of trees made out of chicken wire dripping with crystals. 

 Isn't it magical?

Hmmmm, I wonder where I can plant/place a few of these in my yard?

*Photos taken by La Dolfina at Cornerstone in Sonoma

Monday, June 25, 2012

How Does Your Garden Grow?

There is nothing quite like homegrown vegetables.

Earlier in the season, a friend surprised us by building a raised bed and planting a few veggies in our side yard.

We love taking care of it and watching it flourish.

Our side yard is a decent size considering the standard 50' x 100'  lot sizes that make up our neighborhood.

We've never figured out the best use for this untapped space except of course to store our garbage cans.


That was until we stopped by the gardens at Cornerstone in Sonoma last week... 

Now this is a garden to remember!

There is so much inspiration here!

I think with a little planning we could conjure up a mini version of this next year!

I love the wire and wood structures that are incorporated throughout the garden.

I'm also loving the dark, almost black tan bark on the pathways too.

We planted artichokes!

The posts provide structure as well as purpose to the garden.

Vegetable gardens are a lot of work but the pay off is more than worth it.

What do you think of the garbage can planters?

I think they are going to fit right in with the galvanized  enclosure we built to hide our garbage and recycling bins.

I like the idea of having the path go down the center with a wire arbor connecting the raised beds.

Isn't it thrilling when you find something incredible that you can draw inspiration from?

This garden is pretty big but I think we can take a few ideas and work them into our small  side yard next year!

I'm quite sure I can find some cool vintage tubs, trash cans and containers at some of my favorite salvage yards.

I'm curious how many of you have a vegetable garden?

We love farmers markets but they can get expensive week after week although they are certainly worth the extra money.

I think a garden is a gift that keeps on giving.

We are loving our small simple garden and have already harvested some green beans that I munched right off the vine.

I love knowing that when I eat something immediately after picking it that it is still growing and full of life giving enzymes.

You are eating live food, harvested and eaten at it's peak.

It does a body good!

I love the term, Cave Man Diet, which means eating what God makes vs. what man makes.

Once you become aware of that distinction, you really begin to appreciate the benefits of eating live food vs. dead food.

I recently watched the movie, Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead which has started a juicing movement across the country.

Juicing is a great way to get lots of fruits and vegetables into our diet.
 (There's our son who was home for a visit last week!)

Summer's bounty can't be beat!
I can't wait for our tomatoes to turn red!


Friday, June 22, 2012

Air Plants

 Tillandsia is a genus of around 540 species in the Bromeliad family.

Tillandsia are epiphytes, also called aerophytes or air plants meaning they normally grow without soil.

They don't need soil because moisture and nutrients are gathered from the air and absorbed through structures on the leaves called trichomes.

The roots are used as anchors only.

Reproduction is by seeds or by offsets called "pups."

A single plant could have up to a dozen pups.

Although not normally cultivated for their flowers, some Tillandsia will bloom on a regular basis.

In addition, it is quite common for some species to take on a different leaf color, usually changing from green to red, when about to flower.

This is an indication that the plant is monocarpic, which means it flowers once before dying, but offsets around the flowering plant will continue to thrive. 

After blooming the offsets can be separated from the side of the mother.

You can put them in anything... seashells, teacups, empty vases, driftwood... 

Many people like to hang them on fishing line.

They are unusually hardy surviving temperatures from 35 to 120 degrees.

They are able to tolerate long periods without water, but it is also difficult to over water them.

They do not need direct sun.

Yesterday I found the mother lode of air plants!

Aren't they amazing!

(Last 2 photos taken at Cornerstone in Sonoma)

Air plants are perfect for plant lovers and for people who can't grow anything and are all the rage here in California!