Simple advice for a better life.

My Flower Garden – May 2014

May 2014 blooms- Eastside patch

Spring this year had a slow start, with quite cold nights, and numerous very rainy days.

Summer is almost here, and my perennial flower garden is in full bloom.

Today I will share some pictures of my gorgeous blooms.

Columbine 3

These blooming Columbine are from seeds my sister sent to me from Krakow, Poland.

I seeded them last year, and this spring transplanted the plants to space them out more symmetrically throughout my East-side flower patch.

Columbine 1

These are beautiful double-blooms of light lavender Columbine.

Columbine 4

Here is a bunch of paper-white gorgeous blooms of my Columbine collection.

Columbine 2

These dark purple Columbine flowers are a different type, as you can see.  They are not the double-blooms, but rather resembling little bells hanging downward.

Orange flowers

These flowers are a mystery to me, since they just appeared in my garden this spring, and I almost pulled them out as weeds.

I am so glad I gave them a second chance to grow to maturity, and now am enjoying their lovely bright orange blooms.

Nature's beauty

These are the easiest flowers to maintain, since they seed themselves from year to year, and you never know where they will appear.  I absolutely love their delicate blooms in many different shades.

May 2014 blooms

Wouldn’t you agree that blooming plants are very therapeutic and relaxing?

I love working in my garden after work, and in my free time, just to relax my mind, and to be close with nature.

Please share your thoughts and experience about your gardening adventures.


Cottage Cheese PancakesAs I was looking through a cooking magazine, I came across a recipe for cottage cheese pancakes.

The recipe sounded quite interesting, so I could not wait to test it out, by preparing it for my family.

I altered the original recipe, hence posting my version.

If someone does not care for cottage cheese, I think ricotta cheese would be a suitable substitution.

These pancakes are very moist, but not that sweet.

My grandchildren really enjoyed them served with blueberry pie filling, or maple syrup.

This recipe yields 10 medium size pancakes.


  • 2 whole eggs
  • 1/2 cup of all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 cup of cottage cheese
  • 1 Tbs. sugar
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • Canola oil for frying


  1. Combine all ingredients in a medium size bowl.
  2. Mix with an electric mixer for 5 minutes. (You can also use a blender)
  3. Heat a frying pan with 2 Tbs. of Canola oil to 350 degree F.
  4. Pour 3 Tbs. of batter onto a hot pan, and fry 2-3 minutes per side, turning over once.
  5. Serve warm with your favorite topping, or syrup.








MAY 11, 2014


Mother's Day Bouquet





Waffle bowls filled with fresh fruit Ice Cream Cone Birthday Cupcakes






Another birthday party rolled around for my “little princess” granddaughter, who turned six years old.

This time she asked for an “Ice Cream Sundae” birthday party theme, so her mom, once again, went all the way out to make it exciting.

Today I will share some of the party moments I captured with my camera.

Ice Cream Cone bouquet

Outdoor Ice Cream Cones decor



There were plenty of ice cream cone type of decorations throughout the indoor and outdoor, as you can see at least two of these in the above picture.

Jelly beans ice cream cones, and rice krispies treats

Jelly beans ice cream cones







Ice cream cone marshmellow snacks








There was a large selection of sweet snacks, before the birthday brunch.

Some of which were Rice Krispies, decked out with decorative ice creams, ice cream cones filled with jelly beans, and ice cream shaped marshmallows.


Yummy snacks - Ice Cream Sundae Birthday Party

Oh yes…..there also was a nice display of fruit snacks, as well as variety of crackers, cheeses, mini kobasie (kabanos), sweet and savory dips and chips.

Ice Cream Sundae Brunch Food 1

Ice Cream Sundae Brunch Food 2

The Brunch Menu included Tri-Color Pasta Salad, Nirchi’s Pizza, Roast Beef Au Jus and buns, Breakfast Casserole, Quiche, and Waffles with syrup.

Ice Cream Sundae Toppings - Nuts Free

  Ice Cream Sundae Toppings - containing nuts

All set wtih ice cream bowls, spoons, plates, banana split boats

Here I would like to display all the “necessities” for ” Make your own Ice Cream Sundae”.

These included special ice cream bowls with matching spoons, banana split boats, and myriad of toppings to satisfy the “everything on it” and the “nut free” crowd.

Create your own Ice Cream Sundae

All the ice cream lovers lined up nicely next to the “Make Your Own Ice Cream Sundae” station.

Good thing the weather was great, so the event took place outdoors….as some of those creations gave way to gravity….and had to be recreated from scratch….:-)

It was a great success!!

They had more fun making these sundaes, than eating them.

Many of these fancy creations got abandoned shortly afterward, to melt in the sun, while the little guests got busy running around and playing.

 Decorate your own Ice Cream Server hat

One of the indoor activities included decorating your own ” Ice Cream Server” hat, as you can see how intensely and diligently the girls are working on this project.

They did a beautiful job, but forgot to wear them to the Ice Cream Sundae Making Station…oh well.

Ice Cream Sundae Thank You Favors Bags

Once the sweet treats depleted and the “sugar high” energy burned out, the party bunch was ready to go home for a nap.

They were sent off on their way with a colorful bag full of treats, stamped with ice cream cones (which the birthday girl decorated herself), and a nice Thank You note.  They also got to keep their special ice cream bowls with matching ice cream cone spoons.  Nice!

What a great party this was.

Can’t wait for another birthday party to photograph, and to share with you.

Multicultural Night At a Local School

Ukrainian table - close up viewPoland table 2Irish dancers

I was lucky to have been invited to a Multicultural Evening at a local Elementary School.

There were beautiful displays of artifacts and ethnic foods from several countries such as: Ukraine, Poland, Ireland, Australia, South America, India, China, Philippines, Scotland, and Africa.

Everyone enjoyed a wonderful ethnic dance performance by the Irish, India, and Philippines dancers.

It was fascinating to sample the different ethnic foods, and admire the artifacts.

Here are some pictures I took of the different displays:

Ukrainian table - close up view 2

Beautifully arranged display of Ukraine’s artifacts, as well as short write up about the country and its culture. It includes wood carvings, Korovai (Traditional Wedding bread), hand painted ceramic vases, hand decorated Easter Eggs ( some are over 80 years old), and samples of embroidered  cloth.

Ukrainian table - children books, dolls, wall decorations

Children’s corner of the Ukrainian display, including dolls in ethic attire, wooden wall art, children books and CDs.

Ukrainian table - Ethinc Food - Ukrainian Honey Cake, Poppy Seed Cake, Nalesnyky (Crepes), Kovbasa

The Ukrainian ethnic food table, elegantly adorned by embroidered table runners, and stocked with plenty of delicious samples of Ukrainian Traditional Honey Cake, Fancy Poppy Seed Cake, Homemade Nalesnyky (Crepes) with Nutella filling, as well as snack size Kovbasa (smoked pork sausage, also known as Kielbasa).

Poland table 2

Poland had a beautiful display of ethic artifacts and food samples. There were children toys made in Poland, books, hand painted ceramic cups and dishes, carved wooden jewelry boxes, and a variety of homemade sweets, Polish chocolates, and Kielbasa.

Ireland table

Display of Ireland’s culture, arts, and postcards of various cities in Ireland.

Irish dancers

Here are the talented young Irish Dancers, who entertained all the guests at the Multicultural Night event.

South America  table 2

The South America display of ethic artifacts, modeling of their ethnic attire, and a cookbook full of delicious South American recipes.

Scotland Table

Scotland also was represented  by the above display of interesting facts captured on this poster.

Africa Table 1

Africa was represented with these wooden artifacts made in Africa.  The lady is wearing a very traditional  African Head Dress, made out of a scarf, carefully wrapped around the head, creating a very interesting design.  The material is quite firm to touch, and feels like it is heavily starched.  Pins are used to keep the layers together.

Africa Table 2

The map of Africa in a form of a wooden puzzle like statue.

China table

China table 3







China also was represented with a display of their native artifacts and traditional attire.

India table 1

India had a large display of myriad of artifacts, as well as a poster of the country’s various regions.

There were three generations present by the display table, which really impressed me.

India table 2   India table 3







Dolls dressed in native attire, plus other traditional artifacts, as well as beautifully crafted weaved rungs and runners.

Philippines table 1


Philippines representatives did a super job with their display, pointing out the most important facts about their country, their art, culture and food.


Philippines table 4


Philippines handbags, and handmade jewelry.


Ethnic Attire from India and Africa

I was quite impressed by the native attire these ladies wore to the Multicultural Night…very appropriate.

Don’t you agree?

I hope you were patient enough to check out this post all the way to the end, and found it enjoyably educational.

The evening was quite educational for me, as well as for the children.

I commend the schools for taking time out of their busy schedule, to promote such learning tools to their interested students.

This hands-on experience was far more interesting to the students, than any similar lecture in a classroom setting.

If your school does not participate in these type of events, you should suggest it, and I am sure everyone will cooperate and enjoy.


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