Currently, May

This month I am joining Anne in Residence for an attempt at her “Currently” link-up. Anne posts 5 action verbs each month and writers respond to each of them. Here goes!

Image by pixel1 from Pixabay

Consuming

Readers of this blog know I am on a sugar-free diet. Mostly. I do cheat every once in a while. When I do cheat, I usually write about it.

On a recent weekend, my grandchildren and son came to our house for Sunday dinner. I decided that was a good excuse to splurge. Chocolate chip cookies sounded appealing, so I searched for a special recipe for the special occasion.

Boy, did I find one!?!?

These cookies are slightly heavier on the brown sugar: white sugar ratio than those I usually make. The butter is also browned on the stovetop and cooled before adding it to the dough.

And…the cookies are dusted with a slight sprinkle of sea salt after they come out of the oven.

These cookies are so dangerous I sent some home with the guys after dessert, then had to freeze the rest. I would have eaten all of them.

Exploring

When our boys were younger, my husband and I used to take them on fun hikes through the woods.

Fun for us, that is.

The boys described them as death marches.

You would think we tortured them.

A few weeks ago, our youngest son, two grandsons, Bill, and I hiked up Governor Dick, a local hiking trail that ends at a tower.

To ascend the concrete tower, which I can remember climbing when I was a youngster, you climb ladders, alternating sides at each level. The top of the tower, some 9 or 10 stories high, affords spectacular views of the surrounding woods and even some distant towns and cities.

I packed plenty of snacks and drinks.

The hike was declared a success by my grandchildren. They even want to go back and do it again.

I knew it wasn’t torture.

Getting

Our second dose of the vaccine.

With gratitude and relief, my husband and I received the second dose of the (Pfizer) vaccine. Our side effects were mild, the process was a breeze, and we feel like life is returning ever closer to “normal” (whatever that means).

Photo by Steven Hylands on Pexels.com

Hoping

If you are a regular visitor of this space, you know I hope to run the London Marathon this fall.

If everything goes according to plan we also hope to visit Ireland for a hiking trip before the race.

The tour we want to take is a self-guided eight-day walk. Each day, we would walk between eight and sixteen miles, seeing the sights along the way and making frequent stops for photos, snacks, and drinks.

The tour company transports our luggage from point to point, so all we have to carry each day is a light pack.

We walked The Camino de Santiago in Spain using the same method and loved it.

Keeping my fingers crossed.

Seeing

The absolute best result of being vaccinated is the ability to travel to Colorado again to see our grandson. And our son and daughter-in-law too, of course.

As soon as we felt safe enough to do so, we hopped in the car and made a beeline 2,000 miles west.

We got to hang out with our grandson while his school was on spring break, building Legos, visiting the local playground, and exploring nearby mud puddles.

We had a wonderful time.

The only problem was someone forgot to tell the mountain region of Northwest Colorado that spring had arrived. Winter still hung on while we visited. The final few miles of our trip were slightly stressful due to snow-slick roads coming over the mountain pass to enter the town.

Maybe by the time we return in July for his birthday, the snow will be gone.

I hope.

Thank you for joining me for this edition of “Currently“. I hope to make it a regular feature.

You can find the places I link up here.

114 comments

  1. Those cookies do sound dangerous, Laurie! I loved the photo you and your family – those little guys are so cute! Sounds like every last one of you enjoyed the hike, too. Keeping my fingers crossed that your London trip, and the visit to Ireland, will be a go you you.
    Blessings!

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  2. Congrats on being fully vaccinated, Laurie!! I received my second dose of the Moderna vaccine yesterday, and it is such a relief to have gotten it all done! I had a few side effects, but I will take those any day over catching Covid and giving it to someone else! So nice that you can travel to see family again, and plan for your London Marathon! πŸ™‚

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  3. I’ve bookmarked that chocolate chip cookie recipe – it sounds like one the crew in at my husband’s workplace would enjoy. Looking forward to hearing about the hike you have planned. We were scheduled to be in England this October for a cruise of the Norwegian fjords and were planning a multi day hike beforehand. Australian citizens are still not allowed to leave the country (other than to go to NZ) so we cancelled that.

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  4. Fabulous to hear you’ve been fully vaccinated over there and can start planning some trips. We are slowly getting on top of it here in Aus but it’s taking longer than first envisaged due to lots of issues. The marathon would be a real treat, hopefully it goes ahead. A great idea for a regular feature on your blog. #lifethisweek

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    • I think you guys in Australia started about 5 or 6 or 100 steps ahead of us here in the US as far as Covid is concerned. Your country handled it so much better than ours did. Thank you, Debbie.

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  5. I enjoyed this posts. I was out of reach for our vacation, no wifi. That was not all bad. I did get some reading done, and didn’t try to write anything. I will hope along with you that you will be able to do the trip to Ireland and England, it sounds great. And it also sounds like a journey that will have much food for thought and writing too. This will make a great monthly feature. Sounds like you did well with the cookies. I admit my mouth was watering for a few moments. Hoping to do some cookie baking in my short term future.

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    • A vacation with no wifi sounds like heaven, Michele! I hope your cookie-baking gives you something to write about in your “Stronger Than the Cookie” series! πŸ™‚

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      • Thank you Laurie. As of this morning I am .2 of a pound from my goal. I want to make some Anzac cookies, in honor of our Aussie friends. My birthday which just passed is on ANZAC day, April 25th. But if I succeed in making them, I have to find willing victims, er I mean friends, to accept some free cookies, or find a way to share them at church. Do you ever panic that you won’t have anything to say, to write about, feeling a little brain dead and then the cylinders start to fire off and all you want to do is write? That is where I am now. I am such a talker, I probably needdn’t worry about running out of stories. But I intentionally did not try to write anything on vacation, not until the last day. Stay well friend. M

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      • Congratulations on meeting your weight loss goal, Michele. I bet by the time you read this, you will be THERE. I read about those ANZAC cookies. They are appealing, but I still have the other ones in my freezer. I can’t justify making more right now.

        I am a talker, Michele. I almost never worry about having something to write about. Sometimes I don’t want to make the effort to write about something “important”, but I start with a little snippet of an idea and before I know it, I have 400 or 500 words. You stay well too!

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  6. So lovely to have a peek at some of your family … your grandsons are adorable! and you guys look sooo happy!

    I’ve heard of brown butter choc chip cookies but have never tried them. Maybe I daren’t.

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  7. Those cookies do look good! I love the idea of hiking but it’s not something I ever do and I’m not sure why. Perhaps it’s my lack of fitness (which won’t improve unless I walk / hike) or lack of hiking buddies. And yay for being fully vaccinated.

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  8. So wonderful that you were able to explore the tower (and that everyone enjoyed the death march!) and visit your grandson again! Hoping and praying with you that the Ireland trip and London Marathon happen as planned!
    Visiting from Inspire Me Monday#4

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  9. Congratulations on your dinner with family as well as the hike – spending time with family is what life is all about. Glad you got the 2nd shot. My appointment is in the morning for my 2nd one. #MMBC

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  10. Ahh! Having your grandson visit is a great excuse to splurge. hehehe Those cookies sound so good.
    That is great news that you have had your second dose of the vaccine. It does feel like we are one step closer to returning to normal. x

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  11. Good morning, Laurie! I’ve never seen the word CONSUMING in this kind of post … love that since it’s so much a part of our dailyness.

    And yes, we move on into a new normal or the unknown or whatever we want to call it. One step at a time … I’m so grateful!

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  12. Those cookies do sound good. I’m trying to only make baked goods when we’re getting together with other parts of the family. With just two of us home, it’s too dangerous to have homemade cookies around, even when I halve the recipe.

    Funny about getting a bucketful of candy for the race you mentioned in one of your previous posts when you are sugar-free.

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    • love to bake, Barbara, and I am trying to only bake when I can share with others too. I passed the bucketful of candy along to my grandsons. Too tempting to keep it here in the house! πŸ™‚

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  13. SO many great things here! How wonderful to get to make the trip to Colorado again even if spring hadn’t yet arrived. My boys often complained of hiking trips we dragged them on too and now I get asked often to go hiking; I just love it.

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  14. What fun! Everything with the grands is a blast – cookies, Legos. My sons have their “death march” memories! LOL I hope London opens up for your trip. We were planning a trip to Venice before Covid. We’d sure like to replan that one!

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    • You are so right, Maryleigh – everything with the grands is fun! We were planning a Morocco trip before Covid. Still hope to do that one too.

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  15. I enjoyed this Laurie! It’s so good to be getting back toward normal and you’ve celebrated in some wonderful ways. That tower you all climbed sounds like a unique challenge with a great payoff and I’m not surprised your grandsons loved it. … great trip to Colorado too…in our experience, weather might be difficult there in almost any month.

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  16. Loved this post, Laurie. It’s funny as I have been wanting to make chocolate chip cookies for a few days now πŸ™‚ There is something about even the smell as they bake that makes everyone’s mouth water. They are like a comfort food. So glad you enjoyed your trip!

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    • I love chocolate chip cookies. When my kids were little, I used to make a big pretzel can full of them each Christmas. I had to hide them so they weren’t all gone within a day or 2!

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  17. FABULOUS, Laurie! I loved each of your action verb illustrations-I could almost taste those cookies! I enjoy hiking Governor Dick trail as well, though my husband claims it’s torture!! My dream is to walk the Camino de Santiago one day, I’ll know who to ask for pointers now!

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  18. The cookies look great! And it is exciting that things are opening up more and you’re able to plan for the future. That will be amazing if you get to take part in the London Marathon and to explore Ireland.

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  19. With your jabs done, it sounds like you are making lots of plans and springing forth into the land of normal, instead of the last 14 months of the “new normal” – good for you. We discussed visiting Ireland probably a year ago – now start practicing your brogue! That walk/hike tour sounds fun, just like your trip to Spain sounded like a lot of fun to me, then topping it off with the London Marathon. And in between a trip to Colorado. Your Summer will speed by for sure!

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    • Ha! At least for Ireland, I won’t have to take a course on Duolingo before we visit. At least, I don’t think I will! My mother’s people came from Ireland. I will have to see if I can find out where they were from. Our summer and early fall are going to be busy. Just the way I like it!

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      • In case you visit any pubs with sing-a-longs, try to brush up on “When Irish Eyes are Smilin'” and “My Wild Irish Rose”. You’re going to have a great time.

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      • Yes, it will be fun! In college I was on the school newspaper and us staffers hung around between classes in the room where we put the paper together, plus hung out on weekends, went to concerts, etc. One of our favorite hangouts was a place called “Bimbo’s” and they had an old-fashioned band called “The Red Garter Band” – guys with banjos and garters on their sleeves, red-striped vests and boater hats. They played all the old-fashioned songs and had singalong, long before karaoke was popular. They had a screen with the words on the wall and you followed the little red ball. It was fun, we sang off-key before and after we had beer and pizza. It was a popular hangout for college kids in the area … just good, clean fun.

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      • Your college days seem like they were so much fun! You had a great group of friends to hand out with and Bimbo’s sounds awesome! I could do that kind of sing-along. Maybe they will have something like it in Dublin! πŸ™‚

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      • Yes, we did have some good times and we used the staff office like a home base, so we visited with one another while we worked on the paper, or just ate lunch together. However, after we left there and finished our schooling at a four-year university, we lost touch with one another. Had we had social media and cellphones, it would have been different. We went to outside concerts and inside concerts, so the Red Garter Band was not our usual type of music, but it was a lot of fun. I’ll bet they have a sing-along in an Irish pub.

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      • Are you still in touch with any of your college friends, Linda? What a great bunch of friends you must have been back in the day. I am not in touch with any of my high school or college friends anymore. Kind of sad, I guess!

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      • No, none of them Laurie. Isn’t that strange as we spent so much time together? But after we left there and went on to other schools to complete our education, we never got together again. Same with my high school friends and we were close as well. You may remember I wrote a post back in December about a random junk call I got at the house with the same name as someone in our group of six girls. I called back that night and we spoke for four hours. I told her I’d write a post if she didn’t mind, sent it to her, she followed my blog and I’ve never heard from her since. I won’t reach out because maybe we’ll leave it as it is for now. Like you, we all had something in common back then and it has been too long. It is kind of sad.

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      • Wow! That is amazing that after all this time, you could talk for 4 hours. I feel the same way as you about my friends from school. A few years ago, some of my high school friends used to get together once a month for lunch, but it never suited me and since the pandemic, of course, they don’t go anymore. It has been a long time…

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      • I think too long and we all moved on from those common interests from high school. The six of us who were inseparable through high school got together for a five-year reunion in 1978. We had a difficult time sustaining a conversation while out to dinner and called it an early night. So unlike us who, back in high school, with six of us, you often could not get a word in.

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      • I used to run around with 5 other girls in high school too. We had something similar happen to us. We kept in touch for a while…maybe about 5 years or so…then lost touch as we got older.

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      • Have you gone to any of your high school reunions Laurie? I’ve not been to any of them. We had 613 in our graduating class and I didn’t know many of them. In fact, when they had the 40th reunion I joined the group (because I was nosy) and most of the women used their maiden and married names in the group … I didn’t recognize the ones I knew; same with the guys, but that was only about 1/4 of the class in the group and I only knew about 20 of them.

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      • Neither Bill nor I have been to any of our high school reunions. I had only about 200 in my graduating class, but Bill had about the same as you. I knew a lot of the kids in my class, but I would not recognize most of them now, I’m sure.

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      • I never had a desire to see them again to be honest. High school was pretty clique-y (hope that is a word) and with a class as big as ours, there is no way you could know everyone. Probably the same for Bill as he had a large class. Our sophomore and junior year, we only went half days as the millage did not pass, so we took four classes and were done by noon daily. We only got all our activities and college prep classes back for senior year. I imagine our class will gear up for a 50th reunion in 2023. Since the 40th reunion and this Facebook site, we’ve lost a lot of classmates (most whom I didn’t remember).

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      • I think clique-y IS a word! πŸ™‚ I know what you mean. I graduated in 1974, so it will be a few years until my 50th. Same with Bill. Maybe by then we will want to go see our classmates one more time, but I doubt it!

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  20. Wow, that 8-day hiking tour in Ireland sounds like something I would love to do. I hope you plan on posting about it.

    And especially about your London marathon. I want to know everything about it!

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  21. I’m so glad that you’ve been able to travel to Colorado to visit your son, daughter-in-law and grandson even if the snow made the last few miles a little stressful! That’s great that you and Bill have now both had your second vaccination too. The hike sounds like a great adventure to me – glad that everyone enjoyed it. Keeping my fingers crossed that you can make it over here for the London Marathon. The cookies look amazing – I can see why you sent them home with your grandchildren – they wouldn’t have lasted long here either! #MMBC

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    • I loved our trip to Colorado. I would drive through a blizzard to see my grandson! πŸ™‚ Hope to be able to travel to London. I am keeping my fingers crossed too.

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  22. Dangerous cookies! Now that’s a brand name that might catch on!
    I had no idea that you’ve done the Camino de Santiago. I’ve read so much about it and know of another blogger who has been. Have you read Dinty Moore’s Travels with My Donkey? You might enjoy it.
    All the best for your visits to the UK and Ireland. They sound really exciting.

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  23. Glad your grands enjoyed the hike! We used to hike often with our kiddos – fun (and cheap) weekend activities. We all loved it (99% of the time – some of them were a bit much!) Now…that Ireland hike sounds brutal. At least, to the almost 60 me!! Hope it all goes off without a hitch!

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  24. Those cookies sounds delicious! YAY for second vaccines, spending time with family, and travel. My kids would call our wood walks “death marches” too! Hahaha!!!

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  25. This post got a lot of attention..everyone loves a cookie story!! I am so glad you have been able to catch up with the family in person. I recall last year how that was so hard for you guys (us too for a while). Australia is mucking up the vaccine roll out and I think your country is handling that way better. Hub and I had ours as over 70. We are OK. Travel OS? I hope you get to do it…but for now, I am literally staying put…even to do interstate in Australia is a risk because the governments of that state can close the borders literally on the day. Wishing you a Happy Mother’s Day. It’s one we celebrate with you too. Thanks so much for linking up for #lifethisweek. I am always grateful to see your blog post there. Next week my guest poster is ready to comment…I have done one training session with him…and I will be there too. Cheers, Denyse.

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    • Ha! Oh, yes!!! I love a cookie story too. The US is handling the vaccine rollout well. There is a more competent person in charge now. Last year, the pandemic response from our country was atrocious! Happy Mothers’ Day to you too, Denyse. Thank you for hosting.I am looking forward to reading what your hubby has to say! Maybe he will tell deep dark secrets! πŸ˜‰

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  26. What an interesting cookie recipe. I usually use more brown sugar to make cookies softer, but never heard of the salt at the end.

    It’s great to see your post at ‘My Corner of the World’ this week!

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  27. So great to have a grandkid visit! And this Ireland hiking + London Marathon trip sounds AMAZING. I hope it all works out. I love a chocolate chip cookie that’s heavier on the brown sugar myself…but even worse, I love them frozen πŸ˜‰

    Thanks for linking up!

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  28. I agree with everyone that the cookies sound yummy but what most intrigues me is the hiking vacation. I have never heard of a tour like this. It sounds amazing.

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  29. What a lovely family photo. I did have to smile at the “death march”.
    So happy to hear that you and hubby have both had your vaccines, it is one step closer to some sort of normal.
    PS – I would have eaten all of the cookies too! πŸ™‚
    Have a lovely weekend.

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    • Ha! My grandsons are much more receptive to going on a little hike than my kids ever were! πŸ™‚ Hope your weekend was a good one too!

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