“…as the wind goes sweeping down…”

My oh my oh my. We have just come through a windstorm. I have never experienced this sort of thing, on so many consecutive days, in my life. The worst part was the never-ending noise. We had 100 mph winds clocked at a small airport down the road from us, less than a mile away. We lost power off and on for three days. The worst was about 8 hours straight, but thankfully we slept through much of that. The power going on and off wreaks havoc with electronics. We have to keep resetting clocks and timers, etc. One of the most affected, apparently, is the electronic thermostat on my oven. I guess it doesn’t like being messed with.

Maggie (8 months) running through the wind and snow!

Our dogs were off a little with the noise, the power being off, and the stuff blowing by. The wind chill had us at about -25f and I can assure you it was frigid outside. The dogs loved it; especially Maggie. Being a puppy, this was her first experience with wind and snow. And she loved it. She would come in with an ice beard and solid ice down her backside. She cracked me up. And she hated being toweled off – it became a game to her. We would chase her around the house to get the snow off her, but it was flying off on its own. Once she settled down, we would cuddle her and get the snow off that way. And she kept asking to go outside! Our older poodle, Kolbe, knew better. He stayed inside more often, by the wood stove. In the photo above, Maggie is running on the TOP of our raised beds – which became obscured by the wind and snow. Did not stop her! It was blowing so hard she was barely visible!! Silly girl.

I cannot even say how grateful I am for our Blaze King stove. What an amazing wood stove. Aside from being totally gorgeous for a wood stove (that shiny brown enamel just gets me) it kept our house warm when the power went out. Ed kept it running 24/7 and our living room stayed at a toasty 73-degrees! When it’s -25 outside and you lose power, warmth is a necessity! The rest of the house stayed warm enough with sweats and sweaters on to be doable. We laid a sleeping bag across our bed and slept in our sweats and we were fine. Three days of cold and noise and oh so much damage!!!

Greenhouse while trimming trees around it – we help our breath! LOL!

The photo above is of our beloved greenhouse this summer. We had an amazing growing season in that greenhouse. I had 20 tomatoes and 29 bell peppers, some dill, some indeterminate tomatoes strung along the sides. It would get to well over 100-degrees in there on a sunny day. It was perfect for our little homestead. Along with the raised beds, we had an amazingly bountiful harvest. And then winter arrived. We prayed the greenhouse would survive the rain and snow. It did. It took a considerable load of snow with no problem whatsoever. We breathed a collective sigh of relief. Well, until this weekend that is. *sigh*

Greenhouse post windstorm of ’22

And this morning, this is our greenhouse. And our raised beds – they’re buried under snow. So much debris on the snow – branches, leaves, sticks…the dogs love it. LOL. They brought a huge branch from a pine tree up onto our deck – together because it was too big for just one dog. Anyway, our skies have cleared and the wind has slowed to 40 mph gusts! Actually it has been pretty calm most of the day. Cold, but calm. With clear skies come a big drop in temperature. No clouds to buffer us. So the high today was expected to be zero (0). And the low well into the -6 range. As the sun is waning, I look out and just see a frozen mess. The cover for our little camper is shredded. My husband’s BBQ was toppled over and moved. The back deck cannot be seen – there is a huge mound of blown snow that has covered our table and chairs. And with it being so cold, everything is frozen in place.

Carrs/Safeway Palmer, Alaska

You know, as the saying goes, “It could be worse!” Above is the Carrs/Safeway grocery store. Apparently one of their fire sprinklers burst and the system pretty much exploded over the entire store. With the blowing winds, no electricity, and the cold temperatures in the -25 range, it froze inside the store. The entire store.

Carrs/Safeway Palmer, Alaska – Entryway

And the outside of the store froze, as well. I’m not joking when I say we had a major storm. The roads were almost impassable. We had whiteout with the blowing snow. Semi-trailers overturning and landing on the roads; people’s storage sheds flying across the highway. Debris was flying so much the local police department was begging people to stay home and not come out and take photos like the ones above (got these from a friend who was a patrol officer). I know God protected us – once again – and I feel blessed. Friends had their windows explode and another had her door wrung from the frame and blown inside. The governor declared an emergency and asked us all to shelter in place. I was good with that. Stayed home in my sweats, making sure everything was charged up and we had food to eat. My hubby insured we had warmth by constantly stoking the stove. We made it through the Great Windstorm of ’22 and we are doing fine. Whew. Another new experience to chalk up to living Alaska!! I still love it here. With it being so cold, the snow is glistening and it is sooooo pretty. Almost makes me forget my greenhouse and those shingles that flew off our roof…almost.

Sparkling snow…beautiful!

“Was that today????”


Have you ever faced a task that you truly do not want to face? Ugh. My “office” is a disaster. There is barely floor space. I have no idea what happened to me. I am usually organized. Things have fallen by the wayside and I cannot get myself going these days. I have started back on D3, because I know with no sunshine, that is part of it. And we went off our Whole30 regime of clean eating, and I am finding sugar is my enemy. It affects so much of who I am and how I feel. And it is not good.


I am so blessed to have discovered Whole30 and the amazing group of people online who work tirelessly answering zillions of questions. I once asked my son, “You have google on your phone. Why don’t you look it up for yourself?” He responded, “Because you’re here and you will know this.” Well, so many of us are LAZY. We ask others when we can obtain the information ourselves, with a push of some buttons. “Is this compliant?” is constantly asked, with a photo of a bottle of something or other they are holding up. I mean, come on! In the time it took you to take a photo and show us all how diligent you are about trying to do Whole30, you could have googled it yourself. Who checks Facebook at the grocery store? Not me. I don’t want to use the data! LOL! I print things out; I read the book; I read labels. We can do this ourselves, without constantly checking social media sources. I feel bad for those admins on Whole30 and my other weakness, the Instant Pot. Oh man oh man. I love that appliance!


It has made my life so much simpler and meals are done so fast! I’m a little obsessed, but that’s another post! Back to hating to do things…my office. Ugh.  I went out and got myself a planner for this year and spent the morning inputting all the birthdays and anniversaries for our family and close friends. I input important dates, like when school samples are due and my youngest son’s graduation date from high school. It seems so weird that I will soon have no one of school age in my home. So weird. All of these “rites of passage” that happen to us each year. This past November, our newest grand daughter was born and it was fun to add her birthdate to this year’s calendar. There are losses, but there are so many blessings along the way.


I’m not sure why my office looks like it does, or why I have allowed it to become this sort of haven for lost paperwork and stacks of books. It’s like a cave. And heavens to Betsy, if someone moves something or knocks a stack over, I am in deep trouble. My daughter-in-law purged their house and I acquired a new short bookcase and a rolling cart full of colored drawers where I can organize files. I just have to do it. The mattress we had for guests this summer is still folded in the corner, with the clean sheets and blankets on it. But our 15-year-old dog sort of claimed it as a bed during the day because our floor heater is right next to it, and the blankets make it cozy. It is a whopping 9-degrees outside today with freezing fog, so I don’t begrudge him his warm spot.


The planner in the second photo above is the one I chose. I am not an artsy person, so simple works for me. Stickers and such were bought, too, but I keep planning simple. I like lines to write on and I will add decor and photos as I can. I used to keep a scrap book sort of book calendar when my kids were small. I prefer something that highlights my week, but keeps me on track. So my data is entered and I have had some meaningful conversations, my laundry is waiting to be moved to the dryer so I can wear a clean swimsuit to water aerobics tonight, and…my office still looks like a cave. Tomorrow….at least I sort of started today. Sort of.


“Procrastination is the avoidance of doing a task that needs to be accomplished. It is the practice of doing more pleasurable things in place of less pleasurable ones, or carrying out less urgent tasks instead of more urgent ones, thus putting off impending tasks to a later time.”  That is pretty much me right now….lol!

“..be ready in season and out of season..”


Well, Whole30’ers, it is our 3rd day. I must say that I have discovered some things I did not know. I love butternut squash! Oh my goodness. I made butternut squash soup last night and it was so very yummy. As a family, we decided that the next time (yes, there will be a next time) I am going to add scallops to it! I added chicken this time, but next time we go seafood. And was it ever filling! Wow! Tonight we will experiment with those Brussel sprouts I spoke about earlier. A friend-of-a-friend posted photos of Brussel sprouts cut in half and sautéed until brown in ghee. With a little crisp bacon?? Yum! It’s on our menu!


I have bought canning jars as I shared before. I have made 2 different vinaigrette dressings and they are in them. I am attempting my own mayonnaise and ketchup and ranch dressing. Wish me luck (my lucky family is my guinea pig!! Ha-Ha!). I am going to look for larger canning jars this time. I need more room!


One of the ideas I have run across is to prepare salads and meals ahead of time and store them in canning jars. Send the hubby off to work with his lunch layered all pretty in a canning jar. All he has to do is shake and it’s ready! And to get rid of all that plastic in your kitchen (which I have been doing the past few years – Tupperware is gone!) and replace it with glass. You can easily store leftovers in canning jars. And you can re-heat in them, too. You’d be surprised where I have found lots of my glassware! Garage sales, thrift shops, online sales, deals at my local store….I have slowly replaced all my plastic bowls and storage with glass. It is cleaner, and it does not leach chemicals into your food. I am trying to also not use the microwave. Boy oh boy, that is one convenience it is going to be hard to stop using, but I am determined.

Hebrews 11:7 “It was by faith that Noah built a large boat to save his family from the flood. He obeyed God, who warned him about things that had never happened before. By his faith Noah condemned the rest of the world, and he received the righteousness that comes by.”


I am also stocking up on all sorts of provisions (food, staples, TP, water, my oils and supplements, etc). The weather predictions for this winter are fierce. So many warnings about tons of snow, wind, and very cold temperatures. The Farmer’s Almanac is warning people in the East that last year winter took a vacation! With the storm bearing down on Florida right now, news stories have shown empty shelves in grocery stores and crowded highways as people flee the storm. This year looks to be particularly rough for the east coast, and rainy on the west coast. For us, the Almanac tells us it will be a bit cooler, but also milder insofar as snow is concerned. Except that the old timers around here are warning everyone to be prepared, and that this winter will be extremely cold and there will be lots of snow. Who do you listen to? Well, Noah listened to the Lord and sadly enough, no one else was listening. I keep getting pushed, from somewhere inside of me, to store up food, water, blankets, a generator, extra flashlights and batteries. I think it is the Lord, pushing me to be smart. A local man said to get battery-powered radios, too! We have tons of firewood. At least we think we do. I certainly hope we don’t have to go through all the wood we have stockpiled this season. If we do, I am not sure how we’ll come out the other side! We have a lot of wood. It would be a life-changing winter, that is for sure!

2 Timothy 4:2-5 “…preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.”

I believe it is part of our calling to share when the Lord calls us to minister to our family, friends, and community. As I share this walk along my health journey with Whole30, I do believe the Lord has asked me to share my struggles at finding a healthy lifestyle, free from chemicals. I found my incredible Essential Oils and supplements…I simply have to share the graces I have found incorporating EO’s into our lives. I cannot just discover these riches and not share them with others. I have this blog, which a couple of people here and there read, and I hope that this venue allows me to touch just one soul, one life. If each of us were to do that, the Lord would smile.


Matthew 24:42-44 “So you, too, must keep watch! For you don’t know what day your Lord is coming. Understand this: If a homeowner knew exactly when a burglar was coming, he would keep watch and not permit his house to be broken into. You also must be ready all the time, for the Son of Man will come when least expected.”

There is nothing wrong with being smart and being prepared. I am working diligently on my health and our healthy lifestyle. Hearth and home are a part of that. I am looking into ways to store food and to be able to cook food, should our power go out. We live in a relatively wild area (compared to say, New York City) and help could be a long time coming, or not able to reach our area in time to really help us. That is reality (they don’t call it “The Last Frontier” for nothing). And it behooves us all to realistically look at where we live, what is around us, and what we would do if it all comes crashing down.


The internet is abuzz with all sorts of theories about the state of the world right now. Germany is telling its citizens to stock up on food and water. Other countries are warning their citizens that times are going to get really tough. In the US, this election is getting insanely ridiculous, with both sides seemingly relentless in smearing the other. Mike Pence seems to be the sole rational person in the mix. Dependent upon the outcome, the world could look very differently by January 2017. And that timeframe coincides nicely with the dead of winter. Civil unrest is real, and it is happening all over the world. What if it gets worse? Are you prepared? Could you live without all the medications you take? What about simple things like water? One man said that to be honest, just save aspirin (general medication), water, and bread. You can survive on bread and water. It’s completely outside of Whole30, so I am going to store other things, but the basics are called basic because they are what we can survive on.

The tempter came to Him and said, “If You are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.” But Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” Matthew 4:4.

And so I keep the faith. Not blindly, but fully aware. In the time of Noah, the people were warned but did not heed the words of God. Noah was given the graces to hear God speak directly to him. He followed God’s word exactly as it was spoken and his family was saved. It feels sometimes like we want to just throw up our hands and cry out, “Come Lord Jesus, come!” (Revelation 22:30)


But honestly, as I have said in previous posts, “We are not guaranteed our next breath” (Fr. Justin Rose) The Lord has a plan. He alone knows when this craziness we call our world, will spin differently. We cannot know what the future holds. There is no reason not to prepare for natural, civil, and national disasters. What’s the downside? I guess it would be having a freezer stocked at all times with so much bread, you will never have to buy it, ever again. Or a basement filled with toilet paper and paper towels, water, and matches. You could have piles of blankets and sleeping bags, paperbacks you can read again, and board games to play. But that’s something I think I would rather have, than empty shelves as everyone flees the coming storm. Glory be to God in all things. And in preparing, being smart, eating to honor His Temple (your body), and living and sharing with one another this love He has shown us.