Trees of Transition

Planting seeds of hope throughout our world through sharing photography and thoughts on teaching, cooking, and life transitions.


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Grandpa Karl’s Grave

This morning my husband, Stephen, and I crossed the mountains to Johnson City, Tennesee to find Stephen’s Grandpa Karl’s grave  in the Veteran’s Cemetery. I didn’t have the honor of meeting any of Stephen’s grandparents, but this was the next closet thing to meeting Grandpa Karl. Stephen had only been to this cemetery once, for the funeral back in 2007, so we had to look up the grave using the computer at the main building, then we headed over to the SS section.

We had stopped by Trader Joe’s and bought a bouquet including a sunflower and this salmon-faded red rose for us to place on the grave. I pulled the flowers out of the back seat, Stephen cut down the stems, and we set out to find Grandpa Karl’s gravestone.

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Catalpa Tree Blooms!

Driving to work yesterday I noticed this catalpa tree when I was waiting at a stoplight. Catalpa blooms look like little orchids with their cream background and maroon specks; they are one of my favorite blooms that come from a tree.

Happy Friday, Everyone!

-Mary Hope

Copyright 2017


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Memorial Day Heroes 

My grandpa Howard served in World War II as a doctor; he helped save people’s lives during any battles –including the Battle of the Bulge. My dad was in the Naval reserves and almost had to go to the Korean War, and he was proud that he got to serve his country. I remember playing in his old navy uniform as a child.

My cousin was in the Marines, and now his son just joined the Air Force. My uncle served in the Korean War, and so I have many people to be thankful for this Memorial Day.

I am thankful for our country and all the people that have risked their lives to protect it!

-Mary Hope

Copyright 2017


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What is This Rose’s Story?

This morning on my run I ran past a restaurant and spotted this rose in the grass. The blossom still had beauty to it, so I decided to snap a couple photos. The story behind this flower makes me curious.  The rose is white, so does that mean a friend gave this rose to someone else and the other person did not want to just be friends? Or could it have been just the table decoration that someone snunk out of the restaurant? I do not know the answer; this rose will just keep its secret, but it brightened my morning by how it had a crinkled edge and just made my morning more beautiful.

Have a great week! 🌹 🌹 


-Mary Hope

Copyright 2017


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Returning Treasures

Have you ever lost something and thought you might never see it again? My husband gave me my wedding present a few months early, and I love it! The watch had crystals on it, so I could wear it to our wedding, and I love this photo that our photographer, Ryn Manby, captured of it:

 

M&S (6 of 30) M Getting ready

After I got my teaching job, I was quickly sorting and gathering things in our crawl space, and my wedding watch disappeared from my wrist! I looked all through the house, and I even called the movie theater where I thought I might have lost it. I started coming to grips with the realization that I lost the wedding present from my groom, and I cried. I had this hunch that I would find it someday, but I stopped looking.

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Misty Mornings and Thoughts on Home Change

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This week the mornings have refreshed me more than usual because of the wet, bright, mistiness that has met me as I walked out of my door. A couple days the sun shone brightly on all the new spring greenery, and a couple days the smell of rain and dew hung in the air as the sun fought to shine its brightest. All of these mornings remind me of hope and new beginnings…

My current season of life exudes hope; therefore, this weather met me where with how I was feeling inside: Excited, expectant (about finally being married!), a little sad (my Dad is doing better, but he is not like he used to be), mixed with great hope for the journey ahead.

The weather does help us process life. For example, last weekend my Mom held a huge garage sale to clear out her basement and garage. The first day was overcast, but dry, and dozens of people came to find the treasures. The next day, however, it rained; the rain started with a little sprinkle and progressing to large, steady drops for hours. Because my Mom and brother advertised so well, people STILL showed up and bought more of the things before a junk man took the leftovers away. My Mom repeatedly said, “It helped that is was raining because I’m sort of sad getting rid of all these things. The rain helped…” My Dad is already in Rockford, and my Mom is moving up there soon after she gets the house on the market, so lots of things have been changing. Continue reading


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Thai Basil Chicken and Noodles

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You know those weeks when the grocery budget is tight? That’s when I decide to use what is in the pantry and freezer, and this recipe is what resulted from what was in my kitchen last night. My friend came over for dinner, and she helped me fry up these Pad Thai inspired noodles; what is different from regular Pad Thai is that it has more large vegetables, no onion or ginger (it wasn’t in the fridge!), and has more of citrus notes in the flavor.

Here’s the recipe! Watch out because my friend and I ate over half of the pan ourselves…

Makes 4 large servings

Ingredients:

1/4 c. soy sauce

3/4 lb chicken breast, chopped (raw)

2 Tblsp. coconut oil

1 (4 oz.) can mushrooms

1 (6.35 oz.) jar bamboo shoots, sliced

1 (8 oz.) can water chestnuts, sliced

2 Tblsp. minced garlic

1/4 c. chopped fresh basil leaves

4.5 oz. (half a package) pad thai rice noodles

1/2 c. coconut milk

3 Tblsp. cornstarch

1/2 c. salted peanuts

 

Sauce ingredients:

1 1/2 Tblsp. soy sauce

2 Tblsp. lime juice

3 Tblsp. rice vinegar

2 Tblsp. fish sauce

2 Tblsp. brown sugar

1/4 tsp. ground pepper

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