“I’m going to invite you to my birthday party.”

We’re drawing pictures at the dining room table. I’m not a very good artist and can really only draw butterflies and whales while my companion was creating something that could only be described as nothing I could identify (of course I’d never reveal that.)

She’s an extremely chatty and precociously verbal 3.5 year old, a nonstop talker from the moment she wakes up until the moment she closes her eyes, exactly like her big brother.

Honestly, they are both the most interesting people I know—of any age. I love to spend hours upon hours conversing with them about whatever is in their hearts and minds.

“Here you go. I drew this for you, Grandma!”

“Oh my, that is SO beautiful. Thank you!”

“Grandma, do you know what? I’m going to invite you to my birthday party.”

The way she said it was like a queen bestowing an honor upon one of her subjects. This upcoming birthday is the subject of many conversations. Turning four is a BIG deal.

“That’s awesome, Angel Girl! I accept your invitation. I will love to come to your party. Who else will you invite?”

“Some of my friends from preschool and my brother and that’s it.”

A couple minutes later…

“Can you make a unicorn cake, Grandma?”

“Hmmm, let me think. Yes, I believe I can, Are you sure that you’ll want a unicorn cake for your birthday?”

“Yes. I’m sure.”

“Well, you’re planning well in advance as your birthday isn’t for a few months. Do you think you might change your mind?”

“No, I won’t. I want a pink and purple unicorn cake.”

“You got it, a pink and purple unicorn, no problem. BUT if you change your mind, that’s OK, too.”

Why do I have a sneaking suspicion that my party invitation might somehow be connected to my ability to bake? Am I being cynical?

Upon reflection, if I could accomplish a decent job on her brother’s Pokemon Ball cake for his 7th birthday (and I did) I think I can attempt a unicorn cake for Angel Girl’s 4th year around the sun. It’s really just a horse shaped cake with an upside down ice cream cone in the center of its head, but don’t tell HER,

There’s nothing better than to be able to grant those kinds of wishes.

Sweet Harmony | Push-Fold-Turn


It’s a mantra of sorts. Do you know what I’m talking about?

Picture Angel Girl wearing my Hello Kitty apron on the other side of the kitchen table, mirroring my movements and my mantra, “push, fold, turn…

I toss a handful of bench flour on the silicone mat so the dough won’t stick, and hand her a portion of the cinnamon roll dough to start kneading.

“Like this, watch me. With this part of your hand, push…fold…turn.”

“Like this, Grandma?”

“That’s perfect. Let’s say it together.”

We work and speak in harmony…”Push, fold, turn. Push, fold, turn.”

“You can tell it’s ready because it feels smooth. How does your dough feel?”

“Super smooth, Grandma!”

“Awesome! Now we’ll let our dough rise and finish creating our yummy cinnamon rolls.”

“I can’t wait!”

“Neither can I, but we have to follow all the steps to make your Great Grandma Charlotte’s recipe exactly like she taught me.”

After the dough doubled in sized, both the Angels helped to roll it out, sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon, and they allowed me to complete the process.

One more proofing (no one was patient) and the sweet bread was finally ready to bake.

Dad and Mom came home JUST as they came out of the oven and we all gorged ourselves on more cinnamon rolls than we probably should have.

In case you’re wondering, we don’t ice our cinnamon rolls. We like them just like this.

Dad complimented me, “These are really the best you ever made!”

Do you know what the secret ingredient was?

I do.

It was the sweet, loving assistance of two curly haired angel kids.

Push, fold, turn

The Velveteen Rabbit

I read The Velveteen Rabbit to both Angels and I’m not sure they loved it as much as I did, but it did give us an opportunity to have a chat about my favorite part.

T ran to his bedroom to find his dad’s teddy which now belongs to the kids, so I think they understood the story’s valuable message.

“Like this, Grandma?” “Where Daddy’s puppy chewed on Teddy’s ear?”

“Exactly!” “Teddy’s been loved a lot, hasn’t he?”

T brought Teddy to Dad so he could give him an extra hug. “Hug him, Daddy. He misses you.”

I wish I had a photo of that precious moment, but it’s captured in my heart forever.

“You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in your joints and very shabby.
But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.”

Margery Williams Bianco – The Velveteen Rabbit, 1923.

Self Portrait

The Angels love to look through the photos on my phone, especially all the ones I’ve taken of them, of course.

When we clicked on this rose, I told them it was a selfie of ME cos I’m Princess Rosebud. They thought that was funny but being their dad’s kids, they just HAD to disagree…

“Grandma, you are so annoying! You aren’t a REAL princess!”

“Yes, I am.” I replied. “And you are Princess Charlotte and Prince Theodore.”

“Dad, Grandma’s being annoying again!”

OMG did they just tattle about me to my original Angel Boy? That’s too funny.

From the other room, I hear him say, “Mom, stop being annoying.”

I guess that’s going to be my legacy…however, we’re all royalty around here, so I thought I’d share this little joke to start the week.

This particular rose smells as good as she looks. Spicy and sweet, just like me.

I think a backstory needed to explain the origin of being called “annoying”, thanks to my new friend, wonderfully talented author Debbie Russell. I should have explained it in more detail and to be fair to the Angels.

I first began to reference myself that way when I bothered them as they were busy doing things (just to be funny) like standing in front of the TV during a show they were watching and I’d say, “Aren’t I the most annoying Grandma?” and they’d say “Yes, you are! Stop it!” And I’d stop, of course. Also for example, when I’d read a book to them, a book I’d literally read a thousand times before, to make it more interesting for ME, I’d change the names or spice up the story a bit differently, mainly to see if they were paying attention (which they were) and then they’d say, “Read the exact words, Grandma!” which I thought was pretty cute. And then I’d say, “Do you find it annoying when I do that?” The answer was always yes.

The Angels weren’t being disrespectful. Grandma was!

Gift With Purchase

How does a three year old know me so well?

Her mom purchased a bottle of perfume and it came with a fancy little cosmetic bag full of samples.

Apparently, as the story was told to me, Angel Girl told Mom she had to “save the bag for Grandma” ‘cos “she loves stuff like that.”

She was a thousand percent correct. I LOVE gifts with purchase because it’s like discovering a surprise treasure chest.

How did she know?

I mean, we share the Chanel connection and the ballerina connection, but gift with purchase?

How could this obviously intuitive child see so deeply inside of me?

That’s too much. My heart can’t take it. The joy.

Every single time I use that little bag, I’ll think about my Angel, and smile.

Yup. She gets me.

Happy Mother’s Day!

Join me as I raise a very happy glass of champs to all moms and May birthday girls.

I’m grateful that I had a mom who not only taught me to appreciate Chanel, beautiful flowers and diamonds, how to bake the world’s best cinnamon rolls and apple pie, but also how to make a bed with hospital corners, debride a wound, and nurse a sick loved one back to health. It’s all about balance, teehee. Miss you, Mommy!

Mother’s Day : Essential Elements

The love of and for moms.

This photo is my definition of motherhood; five goslings closely following mom (and dad), learning to eat and swim. And survive.

For me, that’s part of what makes a good mom; unconditional and protective love combined with teaching essential life skills.

In my case, I was often referred to as the “smother mother“, but it’s a label I wear with pride. I’m not a helicopter mom, but even better…I’m (still) a DRONE mom. I’m the same with the grandkids; laser-focused on them at all times.

Every seven years, my birthday falls on Mother’s Day. As my mom often said, I was the perfect Mother’s Day gift for her, and as my son tells me, I wouldn’t have anything to celebrate without HIM, so he’s the one who actually deserves the gifts and accolades. He’s a funny guy.

In my opinion, tomorrow’s the perfect enchanted day to double my joy and celebrate ME. .

The Wild and Unloved Things 🕷️

May We Raise Children Who Love The Unloved Things
May we raise children
who love the unloved things – the dandelion, the
worms & spiderlings.
Children who sense
the rose needs the thorn
& run into rainswept days
the same way they turn towards sun…

And when they’re grown &
someone has to speak for those
who have no voice
may they draw upon that
wilder bond, those days of
tending tender things
and be the ones.–Nicolette Sowder


I LOVE the idea of nature-connected living and (grand)parenting!

“My passion and heart’s mission is to help families step back into the circle of wild things and bond with Mother Nature. When rooted in that relationship and ancient connection, we heal, we flow, we fly.” https://wilderchild.com

What Happened to Julian Sands?

Do you know who Julian Sands is?

He’s an amazing British actor, best known for his roles in The Killing Fields, A Room with a View, Warlock, Arachnophobia, Boxing Helena, and Leaving Las Vegas

He went solo hiking on Mount Baldy In Southern California and was reported missing two months ago on January 13, 2023. Since his disappearance, all of our local mountains have had a record-breaking amount of snow.

His car was found in the parking lot, but no other signs of him. His outcome seems bleak.

This is a treacherous mountain to climb even with the best weather scenario. Others have gone missing, too. Some are found, some never are, nor are their remains located.

I haven’t heard any information about whether he was carrying a GPS location device or a satellite phone, and there hasn’t been an update about the search in quite a while.

I think it’s important to agree that no matter how experienced a hiker, one should never hike alone.

Years ago, my son and friend (both experienced hikers) were on the 10,000 foot Mt. San Jacinto in Palm Springs when there was a blizzard. They missed the last tram down because the winds were gusting to about eighty miles per hour. We were getting really freaked out because they hadn’t called at the agreed upon time. Just as we were about to contact all the officials, a park ranger called to let us know they made it to a ranger station and were OK. Whew! We were so worried!

Poor Julian Sands. Every time I see Mt. Baldy in the distance, I worry about him, too.

Celebrate March 8: International Women’s Day

Wishing a very happy Woman’s Day to all strong, intelligent, talented, and simply wonderful women of this world!

International Women’s Day is a global day to celebrate the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating women’s equality.

IWD began in New York City on March 8, 1857 when female textile workers marched in protest of unfair working conditions and unequal rights for women.

It was one of the first organized strikes by working women, during which they called for a shorter work day and decent wages.

Wearing purple on International Women’s Day dates back to 1900s. In 1908, the combination of purple, green, and white were selected to symbolize women’s equality from the Women’s Social and Political Union in the UK.

Photo by Jason Deines on Pexels.com

Purple amethyst is the perfect stone for today!