Unfathomable Wealth

What it would be like to live with such wealth, that you could create, or have created for you, a home that had it all and even more? This past weekend, my youngest and I visited the grand home of James J. Hill, on Saint Paul, Minnesota’s historic Cathedral Hill.

The Man
The Man

We embarked upon an informative and educational venture into the dream home of one of Minnesota’s most important citizens. He founded the Great Northern Railwaycon49

He was a tireless “workaholic” and created a vast fortune that is evident throughout the state. More information can be found here Minnesota Historic Society  The rest of my entry will be photos and commentary of impressions I left with.

The grand stairway, with its gorgeous woodwork took my breath away. Photos do not do the grandeur of this spectacle justice. the entire house has carved woodwork that was carved by and artist that left his likeness in certain pieces.Carver

The home had the latest technology of the time, mainly electricity, with a gas backup and a central heating system that still works today. The lighting is designed to give one the feel of what it would have been like living in the home at the end of the nineteenth and the beginning of the twentieth centuries. Large windows provided natural light, which is evident where applicable.

The Man was involved in nearly all of the industries that experienced growth during the industrial revolution. I am still processing the entire event. I will return again in the spring the get more from the exterior and the view of the Mississippi River Valley from the Home. Until then

May your moments be all the are meant to be.

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Soul Food

I have read that nutrition for our soul can be, reading a good book, admiring art or expression of any kind, observation and contemplation of the violence and beauty of nature, and finally engaging in an activity or work where the thought of achieving anything other than just enjoying that.

Introducing Duck Soup for myself on Valentine’s Day.

Duck Stock

Whole fresh duck with breasts and leg and thigh removed

Mirepoix-Leeks, Onions, Celery, carrots

Bouquet garni-thyme, bay leaves parsley, peppercorns

3 quarts cold water

 

 

Set aside legs and breasts bag them up and keep refrigerated.

Put everything into a stock pot, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Skim foam scum off and discard. Simmer for 2-4 hours. Strain chill and get ready for the soup.

Please excuse me as I do not use recipes and these are just a list of ingredients that I put into the dish

Aromatics

Ginger, lemongrass, garlic, shallots, sriracha

Veggies for soup

Onion, carrot, celery, mushrooms(baby bellas)

For the soup

Sear duck breast

Cut the skin and fat down to the flesh, season with salt and ground pepper

put into a cool dry skillet, skin down and sear until crispy and golden, about 8-10 minutes, turn over and put the pan into hot oven 400+ for another 4-6 minutes, take out of the pan and set aside to rest.

 

 

Prepare the soup

Heat a couple portions of stock 28-32 ounces

Sautee aromatics add mushrooms and veggies, deglaze with rice vinegar and stock

add fish sauce, soy sauce a little honey

heat to simmer and add a squeeze of lime juice about 1/4 lime

prepare bowls with some cooked rice noodles and sliced napa cabbage

in the bowl

did I forget anything?

Ah yes ladle soup over prepared bowls slice duck breast and place on top and garnish with chopped cilantro and mint

Voila
There you have it

Happy Valentine day fool

toe musical selections tonight

 

 

Do not be too quick…

Do not be too quick to assume that your enemy is an enemy of God just because he is your enemy. Perhaps he is your enemy precisely because he can find nothing in you that gives glory to God. Perhaps he fears you because he can find nothing in you of God’s love and God’s kindness and God’s patience and mercy and understanding of the weaknesses of people.

Do not be too quick to condemn people who no longer believe in God, for it is perhaps your own coldness and avarice, your mediocrity and materialism, your sensuality and selfishness that have killed their faith.

Thomas Merton New Seeds of Contemplation

blossom
Tender Opening

Perhaps you are the only best example of your faith, he has or will encounter. Be the person you wish everyone to be.

 

The winners actively seek and practice a new way of living. A new way of being. A new way of thinking. A new way of behaving. A new way of relating. The losers wait until they are in so much pain that the choice becomes obvious, and they choose to participate only enough to get the pain to stop.” Drop the rock Bill P., Todd W., Sara S.

There was a time I would count myself among the losers. No longer. I am through beating my head against the wall. “The best part of beating your head against the wall is, that you can choose to stop”.

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Today I will actively choose to be better, considerate, patient, kind, grateful, and generous.

May your day be all it is supposed to be.

J

Winners and losers

In the interest of being able to persuade others to their side and hopefully arrive at a majority, in the perceived interest of their constituents. A division is created. What if someone has a great idea for most if not everybody, except that this someone has the opposition’s party affiliation? It then becomes evil and the greatest atrocity ever imagined. Sadly it cuts both ways.

Be Peace

From my perspective and in action. I choose to attempt indifference to the insanity going on in our nation’s capital. My aim is to smile and to be at peace with myself. Be kind to, and understanding of those I encounter. Help when I am able, say no when I cannot. This I pray will ripple out from here and impact more than I am aware of.

Comming to grips with and accepting that no one does anything that is not motivated by self-interest is key to understanding the motivations of leaders and followers. We all desire to be on the winning side. But what if the people you follow are not being completely honest? They’re human and are self-interested, so I’ll just attend to what I have influence over, namely me.img_3788

With gratitude, generosity, and love. Peace be with you all and may God bless all you endeavor.

 

Things in my craw

There are a few things I am considering while macerating these to formulate some relatable content to digest and hopefully feed your soul.

  1. Unselfconsciousness- Acting in a manner where one is not conscious of one’s self
  2. Seeing beyond my own hurt and worry, through action in an attempt comfort or help another and authentically caring thereby alleviating the pain I felt. What is the source of that pain?
  3. If we are unwilling to trust people to make their own decisions and be accountable for themselves, why on earth would we trust putting people (elected “representatives”) in place to make those decisions and still be left unaccountable?
  4. Degrees of receptivity to a higher calling- it can be strengthened or left to wither and evaporate
  5. Apprehensive can mean something other than anxiety
  6. What is essence?
  7. and finally, That everything and everyplace is sacred and worthy of reverence

So there you have it, stay tuned for more on these and more in the coming weeks.

God Bless you all and

R.I.P Dolores

On my list

My list of things I am grateful for, living in Minnesota. The Mall of America is on there. This place is such a blast. I enjoy looking for things I might like to buy or be given should I be fortunate enough. There is also the opportunity to buy presents for those I care about. There is also a place at the center of it all, created for children of all ages. That being Nicolodeon Universe, a full-sized amusement park.

Here are just a few places I like to shop for myself and others. I’ll leave it up to you to ponder, which are for who.

I was here over the weekend and wanted to express my gratitude for being close to the wonderful place. I know that the time to be here is when most are still getting up. Of course, there are many other places of interest and utility, too many to list in my brief post. It’s just fun for me.

Bless all of you who have made it this far

Jeff