Weekend Coffee Share; Red Rock Canyon, and DNA Testing


How was your week? Can I get you some coffee? This week we’re enjoying the magical brew in Red Rock Canyon. I got off work a little earlier on Tuesday, and enjoyed a marvelous, sunny afternoon in Red Rock Canyon National Preservation Area. I would love for us to have our coffee chat this week overlooking the beautiful Red Rock Canyon. Are you game?


I love walking among the scattered Joshua Trees (much smaller than in Mojave National Preserve,) while breathing the fresh mountain air. Over there is a perfect place to sit down and have some coffee!



Did you see the big herd of burros on the drive here? Actually I believe there was two different herds, just close to each other. I counted to 30+ animals. The biggest number I ever seen together. Previously I’ve only see 5-8 animals in a herd. How is your coffee?

Did you celebrate Valentine’s Day earlier this week? I spent the evening doing arts and crafts with my daughter, that was what she wanted to do. If you think too much about it, it’s kind of very depressing to be single on Valentine’s Day. Something I somehow managed to be most of my life. LOL. I choose to not overthink that, and make sure my daughter’s day was special. She put a lot of effort into making individual cards to all her friends. I unexpectedly got a beautiful, Columbia fleece jacket as a Valentine’s gift from the family I work for. I thought that was very sweet. They also got my daughter a thoughtful gift.


..and they actually got my dog a new toy for Valentine’s Day as well! (Not in the picture.)


Do you need a refill on that coffee?

I believe I mentioned a couple weeks ago that I did a DNA test? I got the results today. No big surprises. The most interesting might be that I have 264 Neanderthal variants, which is high. Being RH negative (not having the Rhesus factor in my blood,) this was actually one of the things I was most curious about.

European 100.0% ; Scandinavian 79.6%, Finnish 8.2%, Eastern European 4.0%, British & Irish 2.2%, Broadly Northwestern European 5.4%, Broadly European 0.5%.

Have you done a DNA test? Would you?


Well, I promised to take my daughter to the park, so I better get going before it gets dark. Thank you so much for having coffee with me. I hope you enjoyed the view!

Have a fabulous weekend!


Ms Zen



I believe that you are what you eat; mind, body, and soul. For our family it means that we are making an effort to eat healthy every day. It’s not a diet, it’s a lifestyle choice. 99% of everything we eat is Organic (some things are really tricky to find Organic.) I love growing our own food, that isn’t always possible, but we try to support local farmers as much as we can. Eating seasonal is also something I’m aiming for, (my wallet like that.) I cook our food from scratch, making sure that I know what we eat. Eating good is a priority. We like good food, that also makes us feel good. We live an active lifestyle.


My daughter is not used to eating a lot of sugar. Before the age of two she hadn’t even tasted candy, cookies, or pastries. I believe that sugar is an acquired taste. I have not encouraged sodas, or candy. I’m trying to be balanced about it. I don’t say no when she’s offered a treat now (at age 5,) from someone trying to be kind, but I rarely buy her sweets. When she was younger I did say no. On the other hand, my daughter can have any fruit or berries, fresh and dried that she wants when we go grocery shopping. She eats lots of strawberries and blueberries every day.


On special holidays she’s allowed to have anything she’s offered, while we’re visiting friends and family, and we often bring something sweet with us as well. There is no guilt associated with eating sugar (candy, sodas,pastries and desserts,) but she knows that if she’d eat it every day, she wouldn’t have enough energy to do all the fun things we like to do. For Valentine’s Day, I let her choose something that she wanted to bake. She thought about it for a couple days, before choosing heart shaped vanilla cookies, with strawberry topping. We found a recipe together, before going to the grocery store.


I encourage her to be as independent as possible. To think for herself. It makes me so proud when she has an idea, and make it happen by herself, from idea to finished product. From choosing the kind of cookies she wanted to make for Valentines Day, to finding the ingredients at the store, measuring the ingredients, mix the ingredients, roll out the dough, and decorate the cookies. I did help her read some words that she didn’t recognize in the recipe, the rest she did all by herself, and she was so proud of herself… and I am so proud of her! We bake together every week, but it’s usually bread. I love the fact that time in the kitchen together can include both math, chemistry, and reading. Sometimes even history, and geography, when we read about a place, or an historic event associated with a certain dish, that we try to make ourselves after reading about it. Making learning fun for my daughter is high on my priority list, and I’m constantly trying to become better at it.


This post is part of the weekly photo challenge Sweet. I’d love to see your take on the challenge! Feel free to leave a link to your post in a comment. I’m trying to look at all the entries, but just in case. I don’t want to miss yours!



Ms Zen