Thursday, March 29, 2012

A Place Called Home

Today I am thankful for the opportunity to work in and out of my home.  It is not every wife who gets to enjoy her home and to work in it.  I met a wife and mother today who was just ragged with the stress of her "outside" job.  My heart was burdened for her.  Then my heart turned to gratitude that my husband values my work at home and protects my "position" there.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Another Day

I am almost to my running, or what I call wogging (walk/jog) goal.  My first goal is an 11 minute mile.  I am about 30 seconds from it.  Actually, if I did not include my warmup walk in my 3 miles, I am sure that I could meet my goal.  I will have to set a new goal next week - I hope.

Today, I cleared out the piles of boxes in the trailer.  I was very glad for the ease of loading a pickup truck rather than wrestling with a compact car.  Off went the boxes to the yard sale.  My friend's sister's house is stacked with all the goods for the yard sale.  It will be a 4 day sale, so hopefully it will ALL go.  She is using the proceeds to help our friend purchase and mail gospel literature.  I am so excited!

Next, I went grocery shopping.  This is still a different phenomenon for me these days.  Avoiding wheat and typical flours is a chore and a half.  I must say, if it were not for hubby encouraging me and pointing out improvements we have already seen - I would definitely give up!  One of the store's I shop at labels all of their gluten free products.  I had to smile to discover that my childhood favorite cereals are gluten free.  I left them on the shelf because of the sugar content, but Cocoa Pebbles and Fruity Pebbles are gluten free.  Oh = the memories!

Now it is time to look toward dinner.  Not sure what tasty experiment I will try tonight, but hopefully it will fare better than last night's :)

Sorry, I was so late getting the pictures fixed on the blog so that you could vote for a tract cover.  The overwhelming winner appears here.  While I like the picture, it was not my favorite ... but it was hubby's favorite, and a sister-in-law's, and an aunt's, and a brother's ... .  I am not really all that picky and am excited that it is published and will soon be used to share the gospel with people here in Cleveland County and around the nation.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Truly Trusting

Psalm 56:13
For thou hast delivered my soul from death:
wilt not thou deliver my feet from falling,
that I may walk before God in the light of the living?

How often I love to take things into my own hands.
Yet, if I can trust the Almighty God with my eternal soul,
can I not trust him with every aspect of my life?

Monday, March 26, 2012

Opinions Requested

 We are currently working on a non-Christmas version of the "True Peace" tract.  Do you have an opinion?  Do any of these pictures portray peace to you?  Leave me a comment.  I am sending off the request in the morning :)  I have a definite opinion, but haven't received hubby's opinion yet.  Maybe you can sway me!

Spicy Almond -Pumpkinseed Snack Mix

I have now made 2 double batches of this snack mix.  It is really good and, unfortunately, addicting.  I happened to bake up two pumpkins left from fall last Friday, so I even had pumpkin seeds on hand!

2 c crispy rice cereal squares (Rice Chex)
1/2 c salted roasted whole pumpkinseeds
1/3 c slivered almonds
1 T canola oil
2 tsp chili powder
2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
2 tsp prepared mustard
1/2 tsp Spanish smoked paprika
1/4 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground red pepper
Cooking spray

Preheat oven to 300*.
Combine first 3 ingredients.
Combine oil and next 6 ingredients in small bowl;
drizzle over cereal mix, tossing well to coat.
Coat large cookie sheet with cooking spray.
Spread mix in pan.
Bake at 300* for 10 minutes; stir.
Bake an additional 7 minutes or just until mixture begins to brown.
Cool in pan.
Store in an airtight container.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Always There

Psalm 55:22
Cast thy burden upon the LORD,
and he shall sustain thee:

I saw a very practical example of this verse yesterday while I was out grocery shopping.  Recently, my shopping trips have greatly changed.  I am experimenting with a Gluten-free and a reduced dairy diet.  I am sure that some gluten is sneaking in due to my ignorance, but I am trying to learn and be diligent in this area.  According to some research that I have done, gluten can be a cause of unexplained infertility.  Some of the other maladies caused by gluten included severe headaches, depression, and digestive troubles.  We know that hubby has wheat sensitivies, and he finally agreed to try the diet to support me.  The problem is the cost.  Gluten-free is increasing in popularity, but is not mainstream yet.  One small bag of gluten-free flour is between $4-10 dollars.  Yikes!  One small bag of xanthan gum (the non-gluten, gluten) is $12 in our local grocery store.  I stood in the store and asked God to please provide that I could stick with this plan for at least 2 months so we could discover if it affected our health.  I left many of the expensive products at the store and vowed to research some more. 

On my way to piano lessons, I pass our discount grocery store.  Usually I shop there for marked down chips and crackers and other frivolous snacks.  I almost did not pull in because those crackers and snacks are "off-limits" for awhile.  I pulled in anyway and was glad that I had for God had stocked the shelves FOR ME!  Rice pasta - 59 cents a bag.  Rice mac and cheese (similar to kraft mac and cheese) - 99 cents a box.  And that xanthan gum - 49cents a bag - talk about a mark down.  Even a box of cupcake mix for a treat for hubby.

It is hard to remember to just give my burdens to the Lord the first time.  He heard that prayer in my local Ingles and directed my steps to His provision.  Praise the Lord!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

A Pleasant Benefit

This week, I am thankful for a strange work benefit.  Hubby recently received his new work uniforms.  I have always love the look of my man in uniform.  While I love the appearance of the uniforms, I was not looking forward to the ironing :)  So, why am I thankful?  Well, the shop pays for weekly laundering of the uniforms!  You heard me right ... that will save on stain remover, water, laundry soap, time, ironing ... WooHoo!  What a great benefit!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

A Distorted Picture

Ephesians 5:32
This is a great mystery:
but I speak concerning Christ and the church.

Christ left us a beautiful picture here on earth.  He left the picture of an earthly marriage to show his relationship with the church.  While his relationship with the church has not changed, his church has certainly changed.  Is that, in part, because women have changed their roles in the relationship of a husband and wife?  Have you seen modern women's views being adopted be the church?
How about ... "I just need some 'me' time"?  Pretty popular in the home, modern psycology, philosophy and now in the church.  It seems ridiculous for the church to push Christ away and not want Him in every part of life and worship and yet it takes place each week as we give God less and less time and push Him out of certain corners of our lives.

How about ... "It shouldn't matter to him how I look and dress"?  Many women just "let themselves go" after marriage and children or adopt the world's philosophy of immodest dress standards.  The church as well is approaching the rapture - the wedding - with a grease stained dress because it just wants to do its own thing and be like everyone else.

How about ... "You'll just have to fend for yourself"?  Many women are abdicating their role of caring for the needs of their family.  Many church members also do not want to serve, but just want to see what they can get from the church.

How about ... "My husband is just another child to take care of" or "Can you believe how stupid my husband was"?  Belittling and disrespect is commonplace today in the home.  Look at today's Sunday crowd and you will see that same disrespect.  Look at that same crowd throughout the week and you might not even be able to pick them out.  And how about the disrespectful t-shirts abounding?  Should God be linked with a soda, a beer, or a candy bar?

Are you building a heavenly marriage?  Are you seeking to create a clear picture in your home of Christ and the church?  Perhaps your home is a beautiful picture ... Great!  Are you seeking to be an example in your church to help it to maintain its proper relationship with Christ?

Tuesday, March 20, 2012


Psalm 55:22
A work in progress
Cast thy burden upon the LORD, and he shall sustain thee:
he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.

Psalm 55 has been part of my Bible reading each day this week.
This verse is such a encouraging promise - easy to cling to, right?
As hubby was working on edging our front walkway and garden area last night,
I got to thinking about the second half of the verse.
What does it take to be immovable?
There was hubby, pounding in 18 inch rebar at regular intervals
to hold those timbers in place.
If they were going to be immovable and to last,
there was going to be pain (if they were alive).
I believe the promise,
now I just have to accept what God must do to make me immovable.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Goal Update

Still working on sticking with my weekly/monthly/yearly goals.

Last week, I finished Spring Cleaning half of the house.  I finished the areas we use on a daily basis and have 3 less used rooms to go.  Two on the easy-side and one disaster zone.  I have a friend who is planning a yard sale in 2 weeks so that will be great - the disaster zone can be organized by getting rid of all the clutter.  One man's trash is another man's treasure ... and all of the money is going to go toward the purchase of tracts!

I start week 6 of the couch to 5K program today.  There are intervals of walking and running today and Wednesday with the goal of 22 minutes of straight jogging on Friday.  Last Friday, I did manage to jog for 20 minutes, but I really think that I run slower than I walk :)

I am about 1/2 way through Galatians 2 in my desire to be more disciplined in memorization.  Last week was a little rough, but things are starting to stick. 

More Experiments

It is not always easy to be budget conscious and to deal with food allergies.  Hubby is lactose-intolerant and has been since he was a little guy.  He puts up with the effects of some of his favorite foods (like ice cream), but I try to get him foods that won't irritate him like frozen yogurt and lactose free milk.  The stores have more and more options (including generics) which is nice.  Hubby loves the Great Value lactose free milk.  Despite the increased options, and lowering prices, they are still not as low-cost as regular milk.  I decided to try making rice milk this weekend.  While the experiment worked, the rice milk will not be enjoyed by the glass but rather will have to go in baking and cooking :)

The recipe is simple.  Simply boil 8 times more water then rice and simmer for 3 hours.  When time is complete, stick rice and extra water (if necessary) in blender then strain.  When it comes time to use the "milk" simply add water and shake to get the desired consistency.  (Salt and maple syrup can be added to increase taste). 

Thinking of trying almond milk next!

Friday, March 16, 2012

What will it take?

I just love our church's Sunday School program.  Everyone from age 3 through adult has exactly the same Scripture passage to study each week.  Of course, application to a toddler is different from that which is given to an adult, but each family can discuss the same lesson travelling home from church or over Sunday dinner.  I love the concept and I love studying to teach the pre-teen/teen girls while hubby prepares to teach the adults. 

While we studied the first account of Joseph in the book of Genesis this morning, we thought about what it would take to make us quit.  Joseph stood firm against the evil doings of his brothers.  They called him names, they threatened to kill him, they threw him in a pit, they sold him into slavery.  Perhaps the home is the hardest place to stand for truth and righteousness.  Standing contrary to a parent, to a sibling, to an aunt or uncle ... not exactly comfortable, but Joseph knew what was right and he stayed with it. 

How about you?  What will it take?  Will you attend a religious service with lousy music because mom asked you?  Will you skip a regular church service because grandma planned a party?  How do you decide what is acceptable?  Will you rebuke another Christian for wrong behavior unless that Christian is your child or relative?  There is only one standard ... that is God and His Word.

Thursday, March 15, 2012


This is my beloved, and this is my friend. 
Song of Solomon 5:16

I am thankful for my best friend.

The one who knows me best.

The one who understands my heartaches.

The one who reads me like a book.

The one who holds my "feet to the fire."

The one who encourages me in right paths and thinking.

Not everyone has a best friend like this.

God has been good to me.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012


All the flowers of all the tomorrows
are in the seeds of today.

I read this quote last night and of course it caught my eye.
I love gardening. 
I love watching things grow.
Currently, I am enjoying seeing the baby pea plants in the garden.
Yet often when I view the seeds in my life -
I view them as the blackberry seeds that are stuck in my teeth
or the watermelon seed that I spit out
and not as a source of flowers or vegetables.
Every life will have some seeds,
some hard times that may annoy or need to be discarded,
but those seeds produce something good if properly planted and nourished.

* * * * * * * *
Goal Progress:
Finished Spring Cleaning in the master bed and bath!
Laundry Room and Part of Kitchen today.
Currently working on week 5 of the 9 week running program.
Friday the plan is to jog for 20 minutes straight.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Clean it up!

Proverbs 14:4 
Where no oxen are, the crib is clean:
but much increase is by the strength of the ox.

It is that time of year again.

It just can't be avoided.

If you live and work in your home ... it gets dirty!

I truly did not expect to be doing this again in this home.

But ... today I start spring cleaning.

My goal today - the master bed and bath.

Plum District Additional Dollars

Several of you got a $5 credit to Plum District back in November.  Perhaps you forgot about it or are waiting for the perfect gift to buy.  Currently you can add to that credit here by taking a short Mother's Day survey for another $5 credit.  If you did not get the initial credit, you can do so here.  $10 may help fill that gift closet for Christmas or find a shower gift or a birthday gift or just give you a little "pick-me-up."

Monday, March 12, 2012

Home Again, Home Again

Did you miss me? 

Oh, probably not. 

Hubby and I left home on Saturday morning and were back in town by Sunday afternoon.  Just needed a little time off - no responsibilities on Saturday morning, no teaching, leading, playing on Sunday morning ... just time with each other and time with our Lord.  We travelled less than an hour to a neighboring town and enjoyed beautiful weather and a relaxing couple of days.  We visited a church plant in the area on Sunday morning and were blessed by the work there.  In light of that, I did not do a lot of cooking this past week and definitely not this weekend.  Back to work today feeling refreshed.

Hope you had a good weekend, too!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Another New Tract

Here is the latest tract.
It is the idea of a dear friend who enabled us to work with him on it.
It is hard to think that this small sheet of paper may be the means of leading someone to Christ.

Spring Morning

Ecclesiastes 3:1 
To every thing there is a season,
and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

I am enjoying this beautiful morning. 
The grey cloudy sky is trying to break up.
The bradford pear trees are beginning to bloom.
The daffodils are prevalent in the area.
And don't forget the newborn sheep and goats at the local farm.
We may be 1 1/2 weeks from Spring ... but it sure feels like it here!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

An Individual Plan

There is much said today about meeting the needs of individuals. 
No child left behind ...
Don't bruise their self esteem ...
government handouts for everything, from cell phones, to food, to heat ....
no peanuts on airplanes because of those with allergies.

Some individual plans are great - some just take things too far.
We just don't all need, deserve, or earn the same things.

Today I am thankful for God's individual plan for me.
He has slowly worked with me to scrape (or knock) off some rough edges
(usually showing me more rough edges in the process).
He patiently forgives when I continue to struggle with the same sins over and over again.
He sees ME!
He is a personal God.
What a reason to give thanks!

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

A Special Survey

I was doing just a little shopping yesterday.  Of course, the rows of Easter goodies caught my eye.  No, we don't celebrate with Easter baskets and heaps of candy, but I do enjoy a good jelly bean now and again while hubby usually gets at least one Cadbury Creme Egg (they just look to much like a raw egg inside for my liking).  CVS had their jelly beans on sale and then returned all of your money in the form of Extra Bucks so I picked up a bag.  While Starburst Jelly Beans are my favorite, the fruit flavor that I picked up aren't bad.  I am not a big fan of the clove and licorice flavor that come with the spice jelly beans or the tropical flavor (pina colada, coconut) that I tried last year on this same CVS sale. 

So what's your opinion?
Check out the poll on the side bar and let me know what you like best.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

What is Acceptable?

I have been doing some reading lately.  Mostly books to encourage me to be more Christlike as a woman.  It seems that the overwhelming themes are speech and dress, speech and dress.  I guess these are prevalent struggles for women because it is so easy to assume the attitudes of the world around us in both.  Immodesty, tight clothing, revealing clothing have become the order of the day.  We are brainwashed into the world's idea of "beauty" while ignoring God's standard for true femininity and modesty.  The speech that used to be labeled as "befitting a sailor" is now accepted of men and women alike.  I was convicted.  Am I dressing for the King of Kings or for the attention and acceptance of those around me?  Do I sound like a woman, or do I slip into "sailor" mode?  Are my words sweet in content and tone?

Psalm 19:14
Let the words of my mouth,
and the meditation of my heart,
be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD,
my strength, and my redeemer.

What I find acceptable will determine my actions?  I think that it is unacceptable to have a foul smelling house.  It is not always easy to fix this problem, but the smell of last nights slightly burned breakfast just had to go this morning.  So my action - simmer some water with orange peels, cloves, and cinnamon sticks!  Oh it smelled so yummy and my house was "acceptable" again!  If I so readily stick to my man-made standards, should I not be quicker to conform to the standards set before me by my Lord.  It is not my standard that matters, but His!

BTW - The breakfast recipe was a hit, we just didn't scrape the bottom of the pan where it got a little overdone.  In fact, hubby asked for it again tonight!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Having Breakfast Tonight

Hubby requested breakfast for dinner tonight.  He happened to notice that there was some ham in the refrigerator and knew it would appear with a "breakfast-type" meal.  This meal was found here.

Ham and Potato Saute with Baked Eggs
Yield – 4 servings
Prep Time – 10 minutes
Cook Time – 5 to 7 minutes

1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 bag (28 oz.) frozen diced Potatoes O’Brien
(I'll just dice and precook my own potatoes)
2 cups ham, diced
3-4 eggs
Salt and pepper, to taste
Dash of Italian seasoning for serving

Preheat Oven to 350.
Add the oil, potatoes and ham to the skillet and saute for 7 to 9 minutes. Then make a few wells for the eggs.
Crack the eggs into each well. Then put the skillet right into the oven.
Bake for 5 to 7 minutes, or longer if you want the egg completely baked.
Sprinkle a little salt and pepper and some Italian seasonings onto each egg.

Sounds quick and easy, but hearty enough to fill the hubby.

** ** ** ** ** **

Today, I am back to week 4 of the jogging challenge.  I missed a 2 of 3 days last week due to revival meetings, rain, and general fatigue.  I have the 4th load of laundry in - it is VERY breezy today and they are drying quickly.  Maybe I will try for a 5th!  I must land myself in the "guest room" today - it has become a catch-all and is definitely getting on my NERVES!!!!

Friday, March 2, 2012

Only 3 Months Off

It is hard to believe that "winter" in our area lasted only 3 months.  To me, winter is that time of year when you take a break from lawn mowing.  (It really is that season of snow that can last from October to April in some areas, but that definition does not fit this area)  I did my last mowing on Thanksgiving Day ... and the first mowing - March 1, yesterday.  I wasn't really mowing grass, but the onions and the flowering weeds were creating a jungle in the back yard over the septic tank.  March was definitely not "In like a lion."  The weather was high 70's and clear yesterday.  We did however wake up to some storms this morning and the temps are supposed to drop and possibly produce some hail storms later today.  It is a good day to stay put and clean!

Thursday, March 1, 2012


Today, I choose to be thankful for my good health.  My health, vision, and mind allow me to serve in so many different areas.  I have mobility.  I have daily strength.  I still have all of my teeth (except the wisdom teeth).  I have no dietary restrictions except those that are self-imposed.  I haven't been in the hospital for over 30 years.  I don't have a doctor who knows me by name, or sight. 

Perhaps, you think ... well of course you are in good health - no 36 year old should be "croaking" around!  Yet daily I hear of people my age seeking disability payments, I read of the death of people my age or younger, I see young folks who cannot be on their feet for 2 hours.  I choose to be thankful.

 Acts 17:28
For in him we live, and move, and have our being;