cha cha cha cherries!

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Oh yummy, yummy cherries!  It’s the sign of summer!!!

Yes, they are delicious but did you know can knock the socks off gout and also help in alleviating arthritis?

IT’S TRUE!

Just one cup of sweet or sour cherries contains about 130 calories and are a source of beta carotene, vitamin C and potassium.  There has even been research that has found the quercetin in cherries is linked to a reduced risk of coronary artery disease.  And they taste great!!

Here is some great news for those suffering with pain and swelling:

“In research published in 2004 at Johns Hopkins University, rats were injected  with either a solution containing tart cherries or a prescription non-steroidal  anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) and exposed to either a heated surface or an  inflammatory agent. The tart cherries significantly reduced pain sensitivity and  at the highest dosage were as effective as the drug. The authors conclude that  tart cherries may have a beneficial role in inflammatory pain. In a 2001 study  at Michigan State University, the anthocyanins in cherries were found to be  equivalent to two common over-the-counter painkillers(also NSAIDs) for  inhibiting the COX-1 and COX-2 enzymes associated with inflammation.” (source)
Cherry

Remember when buying cherries, look for plump, firm fruit with green stems.  Both sweet and sour cherries will spoil quickly.  Find them at your local farmers market since imported cherries aren’t as flavorful.   Unwashed fruit should keep in your refrigerator for up to a week.  Be sure to wash right before eating, since water can cause the cherry to split and soften.

YUMMY CHERRY TART

  • 9 graham crackers (each 2 1/2 by 5 inches)
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1/4 cup sugar
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 6 ounces bar cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 pound fresh sweet cherries, such as Bing, pitted and halved
  • 1 tablespoon seedless raspberry jam

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a food processor, pulse graham crackers and 2 tablespoons sugar until finely ground. Add butter, and process until combined. Transfer mixture to a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. Using the base of a dry measuring cup, firmly press mixture into bottom and up sides of pan. Bake until browned, 10 to 12 minutes. Let cool completely on a wire rack.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat cream cheese, vanilla, and remaining 1/4 cup sugar until light and fluffy. Gradually add cream, and beat until soft peaks form; spread mixture in cooled crust. Scatter cherries on top.

In a small saucepan, combine jam and 1 teaspoon water; heat over low until liquefied, about 2 minutes. Using a pastry brush, dab cherries with glaze. Refrigerate tart at least 30 minutes or, covered, up to 1 day.  (from Everyday Food, June 2007)

an albino hummingbird…tweet that!

How beautiful and how rare!  A ruby-throated albino hummingbird is a precious sight for all of us!

Kevin Shank took these gorgeous photos in Virginia and had them published in the October, 2011 issue of Nature Friend magazine.

Matthew 6:26, “”Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?”

Enjoy!

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oh, go take a hike…so we did….

What a glorious day!!!  A perfect day for a perfect hike!

Jimmy and I decided to go for a quick ride…which turned into a hike, back into the Caribou National Forest.

It was so beautiful back there, that we got out of the ‘gator’ and decided to walk.  I picked up my camera and Jimmy picked up his……well…..

Yeah…it was a perfect spot for a phone call………..sigh….

Oh well!  There was soo much to be discovered!  Trees that would make a perfect fort…

The moss on the trees was gorgeous and green…

It kinda gave the forest a creepy feel to it….but the sky was blue so we kept going!

We found a little stream, with just enough water to be ice!  It was only in the 40’s when we set out, so it was pretty cold!

Then I was so excited to see a little chipmunk!  He was so cute and let me take some pictures of him eating…

And this next picture is of him with 2 seconds left….

before the biggest owl EVER swooped down and snatched him up!!!!  IT WAS 2 FEET AWAY FROM MY HAIR!!!  

I was so startled that I fell over backwards and wasn’t able to snap a pic of that brute….It was his last supper.  (side note:  Jimmy thought this was the most hysterical thing he had ever seen….naturally)

So, thus ends the beautiful day in the forest.  Turns out, you CAN see the forest for the trees!!

are you listening?

A woman whispered, “God speak to me” and a meadowlark sang

  but the woman did not hear… 

So the woman yelled, “God speak to me!” and thunder rolled across the sky…

  but the woman did not listen….

Then the woman looked around and said, “God, let me see You!”  And a star shined brightly….

  but the woman did not see… 

So the woman shouted, “God!  Show me a miracle!”  And a life was born…

  but the woman did not notice… 

So the woman cried out in despair, “God!  Touch me and let me know you are there!!”  Whereupon, God reached out and touched the woman…

  but the woman brushed the butterfly away and walked on.

This is a beautiful reminder to stop, look and listen to God in our surroundings. 

Psalm 94: 18-19, 22  “When I said, “My foot is slipping,” your love, O Lord supported me.  When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought joy to my soul.  The Lord has become my fortress and my God the rock in whom I take refuge.”