Ozarks Flood and Tornado of ’11

Pray. Just pray. Then donate.

The people of the Ozarks are resilient, but how much more can they take? We had over 30″ of rain at our house in about a week, but we’re the lucky ones.  These pictures are our neighbors:  two boat docks and a neighborhood all within “shooting” distance from our windows.

Now the people of Joplin are devastated.  Literally and figuratively torn apart from their homes and loved ones.  A tornado touched the edge of our property about four years ago while we were huddled in the only room in our house without windows: our hall closet.   A day after the Joplin tornado, we watched as another tornado skirted the skyline, crossed the river and, thankfully, never touched down.  God have mercy on the people of Joplin.  I cannot even begin to imagine the pain. . . .

“Thanks” to flood gates, the lakes are going down while the flooding on the river commences.  Will people rebuild and repair?  You bet they will.  They say time heals all wounds and no doubt this will be the case with this latest series of disasters.

Now, please pass on some good karma and donate no longer needed clothing, kitchen supplies, etc., to shelters to help those less fortunate.  Even better, pick up a new shirt at the store and drop it in the donate bin.  Mother Nature can be wicked; this could be you.


Lemongrass/Ginger/Mango Agua Fresca

For the last month (okay, the entire summer) my mantra has been:  I hate summer.  With that thought constantly in my mind and flowing out my mouth, I’m aware I am not drinking enough water.  I like water, but hum, I seem really preoccupied lately, and before I know it, half the day has passed and other than my mandatory cup of joe in the a.m., I realize I’m slightly dehydrated and (yawn) H2O all day is so boring.  I’m not a soda or tea drinker.  Juice and milk are a little much all day long,  so here’s my non-boring solution: Agua Fresca.  I think Better Half will like this drink, although I doth think I might need to make another batch!

I feel like I’m in Mexico already!

Lemongrass/Ginger/Mango Agua Fresca

(Wow, that’s a mouthful!)

12″ stalk of lemongrass, cut in six pieces
2″ piece of ginger root, thinly sliced
2 mangoes, peeled, seeded, and cut into chunks
½ lime (unpeeled)
½ cup sugar
12½ cups water, divided

Mix sugar and ½ cup of water in small pan.  Pound lemongrass with meat mallet to help release juices.  Add lemongrass and ginger to sugar water.  Heat until just boiling and remove from heat.  Allow to completely cool and remove lemongrass and ginger.

In blender, puree lime, mangoes, and 4 cups of water.  Strain mango mixture using a sieve (pushing the pulpy bits to release juices).  Discard pulp.  Mix mango mixture with lemongrass/ginger syrup and remaining 8 cups of water.  ah! refrescante!

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