Thursday, July 31, 2014

A Hug For My Feet

Today, I am thankful for my new workout shoes.
I bought hubby some workout clothes for his birthday;
and he bought both of us some new inside training shoes.

Hubby and I do a lot of interval training - 
strength training and cardio work in quick bursts.
 Our new minimal shoes feel so good and are easier to move in.
They weigh practically nothing
... like being barefoot, but with a little more protection.
Who can argue with the opportunity to feel like you are barefoot all the time :)

...and might I add ...
...they are really cute!

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Not Always Easy

Proverbs 28:20 
A faithful man shall abound with blessings: 
but he that maketh haste to be rich shall not be innocent.

This verse reminds me of the Aesop's fable about the tortoise and the hare:
"Slow and Steady Wins the Race."
or perhaps Robert Frost's poem:
"I - I took the road less traveled by ..."

It is easy to be swayed by "the easy way."
Who hasn't contemplated the easier path?
the fast fix?
the miracle diet?
fast money?

The reward - the blessings - 
belong to the faithful.

Are you faithful in your work today?
Did you look for a way to bless your husband?
Is your "domain" clean?
Did you impart character to your children?
Are you tossed about today or a secure anchor in your home?

Be faithful - 
and wait for God's blessings
when and where He wants to bestow them.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Come and Sit a Spell

Another "gain" in our new home was a large front porch.
We love to sit out on the cool evenings.
We love to meet our neighbors as they walk in the evenings.

The porch had some issues ...
some due to the dripping gutters,
some due to the wrong paint,
some due to boards being placed too close together.
The problems led to rot, mold, mildew, and slippery boards.

Old Porch Floor             vs             New Porch Floor

So we updated.
White base and posts stay,
new wood stained floor,
rope railings,
wide steps,
and some solar lighting
(perfect for evening dates in the fall and winter).

Non-skid tape on porch steps.
It is a reminder of our time in Acadia National Park (honeymoon) and the Seattle, WA area.
It makes me crave a bowl of smoked salmon chowder.
This is probably our favorite improvement and will be the most used.

2 more landscape timber lights.  The other is on the walkway to the house.

The deck was also a learning experience.
We learned that ...
natural rope shrinks when wet (and swells in diameter).
We learned that ...
it is a lot of work to reuse materials.
We learned that ...
there is great satisfaction in hard work.

In the flower garden today.

This used to be a grill table - repurposed as my garden table.
It was made of old pallets and I added extra laminate tiles from the bath and laundry to the top for ease of cleaning.
I am looking for some colorful, cheap "oops" exterior paint to liven it up - maybe yellow, sage, or ?.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Are You Enjoying It Too?

Guess what we have been enjoying with our meals?
At least once a week, I pick up some sweet corn.
What a treat!

This week's Menu:
Sunday:  Teriyaki Deer Tenderloin, Broiled Tomatoes, Mashed Potatoes
Monday:  Grilled Greek Chicken, Grilled Corn, Cucumber Salad
Tuesday: Shrimp Pasta Salad
Wednesday:  Balsamic Chicken, Acorn Squash
Thursday:  Lemon Dill Tilapia
Friday:  Baked Spaghetti Pie
Saturday:  Grilled Sausage Stuffed Zucchini

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Blessing in Disguise

When we began the renovations on the exterior of the trailer,
I sat down and wrote blog entries for each activity ...
then I assigned them to a Tuesday throughout the month(s).
This Tuesday was supposed to show the front porch,
but we had some setbacks.

I thought that we had finished everything before the rain set in ...
but I did not know how rain affects new rope.

We had put in rope railing ... it looked beautiful, 
but ...
it shrunk in the rain this weekend.

With some late research we realized that we should have soaked the rope
and allowed for 8-10% shrinkage.

So where is the blessing?

We hung the rope railing,
but the rain prevented us from cutting and tying it off.

It shrunk and had to be removed,
but we still have the LONG, usable pieces of rope, rather than unusable pieces that had already been trimmed.
Also, it shrunk, but did not ruin or pull down the posts because it was not tied off and there was still some give.

So this week,
I am thankful for the rain ...
at the perfect time.
Rain to prevent a costly mistake.

The rope has now been soaked,
larger holes drilled in the posts ...
and we will be back in business soon.

Hopefully I can share my beautiful porch with you next Tuesday.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Poverty or Wealth

Proverbs 28:19 
He that tilleth his land shall have plenty of bread: 
but he that followeth after vain persons shall have poverty enough.

Another reminder to stay focused and diligent.

Work = Food
It is so simple and so lacking in society today.
The welfare mentality teaches us that we deserve gifts,
that we can have what we want for minimal effort.
It is not God's plan.

Vain - empty, useless
Who are my friends and companions?
Do they edify, strengthen, and encourage?
or is it all vain activities and conversation?
Wasting time in useless activities and with useless people 
will only breed poverty in body AND soul.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Just For Fun

During my many Pinterest searches for deck ideas,
I came across this cute lighting idea.

Just 4 lengths of landscaping timbers,
4 solar path lights,
and a little extra rope from the railing!
We haven't finished the rope railing, so the bottom does not have any rope trim - yet.

What started as one ... will become 3 light fixtures ...
We liked the first one so much that we cancelled the order for solar lighting for the deck posts
and will build 2 more timber lights :)
One will have 5 lights and the other will have 3.

They are movable ... (can you say lighting during a power outage)
the lights are easily replaced ...
and they add to the "dock" look of our NW deck.

The lights do not go on until about 9 during the summer,
so we don't enjoy them much now ...
but you know where you can find us this fall/winter.
Date Night at home!

Monday, July 21, 2014

In The Kitchen

The poor neglected kitchen ...
I spent today cleaning ...
really cleaning.
After 2 1/2 weeks of exterior work,
it was good to give some attention to the interior.
Things had gotten a little crazy.

I did do some cooking over the weekend for the birthday ...
jell-o cakes to celebrate at work ...
vanilla donuts ...
birthday pumpkin pie.

Sugared out now and need to get focused again.

Lots of grilling - hubby got a new grill for his birthday :)
The last one had become a flame thrower and 
our grills are so cheap it wasn't worth replacing the burner covers and such.

This weeks menu:
Sunday: Church dinner - baked potato bar
Monday: Taco rice
Tuesday: Chicken Kabobs
Wednesday: Pork Chops / potato and zucchini bake
Thursday: Birthday dinner with a friend
Friday: Hamburgers
Saturday: Chicken / Rice / Seasonal Veggies

Fair's a-comin'

Our County Fair is not until the end of September,
but it is not too early to start planning
(especially since Vistaprint is having a sale).
So ...
the banner for the booth was ordered today.
"The Bridge" by William Ressler often sparks conversation.
The artist, Mr. Ressler, was kind enough to share his work with us.

Saturday, July 19, 2014


A huge HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my sweetheart!
~~Celebrating 35 years today~~

Born 386 miles and 23 years away ...
(the distance between Wappingers Falls, NY and Butler, PA)
(the time between 1979 and 2002)

So thankful for the hand of God that brings people together.
I am a blessed woman.

Thursday, July 17, 2014


As we renovate the exterior of our home, 
I cannot help but be thankful for a husband who understands.
Who understands the value that my "domain" plays in my life.
Who understands that the appearance of my home affects me.
Who understands an inborn desire in me to tend a keep a home.

I am thankful for the resources and time and patience that he has put into helping me make a house into our home.
I am thankful that he loves to enjoy that home with me.
I am thankful that a more settled and peaceful home has limited our ramblings and wanderings.

I am thankful for the home that God has provided.
I am thankful for those who visit and encourage us.
I am thankful for God's care.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Faithful in All Things

Proverbs 27:23 
Be thou diligent to know the state of thy flocks, 
and look well to thy herds.

This week's Proverb reminds me of the need to be faithful
with my tasks and ministries.
There are so many things vying for my attention ...
 so many ministries ...
so many needs ...
so many "good" things.

God wants me to be diligent to my work.
I know he has given me a husband to care for,
a home to tend,
definite church responsibilities.
These things need to be cared for FIRST!

Then there are the extras.

Later in this chapter, we read the results of diligence ...

Proverbs 27:26-27
 The lambs are for thy clothing, and the goats are the price of the field.
 And thou shalt have goats' milk enough for thy food, 
for the food of thy household, and for the maintenance for thy maidens.

I do not know what your "herd" or list of responsibilites looks like ...
but I do know that we should be responsible with what we have been given,
whether it be small or great.
God will provide.
Be busy and diligent doing His work.

Luke 16:10 
He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: 
and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Face Lift

Trailer color before face lift - sky blue?
One of the easiest ways to brighten a home is a fresh coat of paint.
Before moving in, the entire trailer received a fresh coat of paint inside...
...celery, pine bark, and horseradish.
My restful retreat.

My favorite home exterior color is a pale sage green,
but since I used it throughout the interior,
I chose a blue for the exterior.
There are hints of this blue in the guest bath.
It changes color a bit throughout the day ...
smoky blue ... blue ... blue/purple

This blue is called ... Thundering Clouds

More nature ...
I love a nice storm ... if I am inside.
The call to take it easy ... no work can be done outside!

I first fell in love with a deep blue house when hubby worked at a farm just north of us.
It was like a little cheery cottage.
Blue with white trim and a bright yellow door.

The trim was refreshed,
and the shutters were scraped and given a fresh coat of paint as well.
The numbers also got a quick spray with leftover appliance spray paint.

The pictures are of the side and back,
because the front porch is still in progress
and a reveal for another week.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Surprise Recipe

We are getting back to a normal eating plan - 
slowly but surely.
There was a surprise recipe in the week - 
a google find to use zucchini.
Hubby loved it ...
I thought it needed some Parmesan cheese!

Roasted Potatoes and Zucchini

6-7 Potatoes
2 Zucchini
3 Cloves Garlic
1 Tbsp Rosemary
1/2 tsp Sea Salt
1/2 c Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Black Pepper

Cut Potatoes and Zucchini in 1" Chunks.
Coat potatoes with mix of garlic, rosemary, salt, and oil.
Bake potatoes 30-35 min at 350*.
Add zucchini chunks and cook 20-25 min more.

This weeks menu:
Sunday: Chef Salad
Monday: Tater Tot Casserole
Tuesday: Sausage Gravy and Biscuits (moved from last week)
Wednesday: Chicken Pot Pie
Thursday: Pork Chops and roasted potatoes and zucchini
Friday:  Sloppy Joes
Saturday:  Birthday Dinner ... PF Changs

Thursday, July 10, 2014

One Stop Shopping

It may seem a silly thing,
but I am thankful that our local Wally World is carrying our favorite bread now.

A small thing ...
but it helps speed up shopping day.
Not only our favorite bread,
but more and more allergy friendly products.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Delayed Reward

Proverbs 27:18 
Whoso keepeth the fig tree shall eat the fruit thereof: 
so he that waiteth on his master shall be honoured.

Being a homemaker can be a thankless job
(though it does not have to be).
There may be days of discouragement,
days when you want to quit,
days when you wonder if it is worth it.

There is a reward for a job well done.
Remember the laws of sowing and reaping?
You reap what you sow.
You reap later than you sow.
You reap more than you sow.

Do not be discouraged.
Give your all today!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Two are Better Than One

Are you curious about what started the exterior renovations?
Well - it was this hole under the front door.
Caused by a drip from a gutter,
onto a porch with no drainage,
leaking against a fiberboard siding.

You can see the remainder of a front porch here.
It seemed that there was no way to pick just one fix.
If we trimmed out the trailer, we needed to paint.
If we were to fix the rot, we needed to stop the leaks.
If we stopped the leaks, we also needed to repair the non draining porch.

One of the thing that we appreciate about our home is the gutters.
With the fiberboard siding, we want to keep it painted for protection
and keep as much moisture off of it as we can.

Gutters can also be a real hassle.
Hubby had tried to repair the dripping gutters using many avenues ...
new rivets, tar, rubber spray, silicone.
The silicone worked the best, but still not perfect.

As we researched replacing the gutters,
we found that one of the problems was that our nearly 80 foot trailer 
needed 2 downspouts per side - not 1!
Our gutters also did not "drop" like they should causing water to just sit ... and drip.

So down come the old aluminum gutters
and up with vinyl gutters complete with 2 downspouts per side.
So glad for the end of the "continual dripping."

You can catch a glimpse of the new paint color in the corner.
Hopefully I can reveal the "face lift" next Tuesday.
I am headed back up on the ladder today.
I am pretty sure that I will not finish again today ...
but I am getting closer.

Monday, July 7, 2014

De Ja Vus

We had a beautiful weather weekend and got a lot done.
Still much to do, but they will be smaller jobs that can be put into smaller blocks of time.
My best guess is that I have 2 more days on a ladder painting the exterior of the trailer.
So ...
simple meals are still in order.

This week's menu plan:

Sunday: Tilapia, Corn on the Cob, tomato/cucumber salad
Monday: BLT's, chips, watermelon
Tuesday: Chicken Nuggets, French Fries, cucumbers
Wednesday: Mediterranean Chicken, Grilled potatoes and zucchini
Thursday:  Biscuits and Sausage Gravy - fruit
Friday: Pizza

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Happy Sunny Day!

I am thankful that this week has afforded many sunny days ... and evenings, for that matter.
I am thankful that the front of the trailer is primed and almost completely painted.
I am thankful that tomorrow and Saturday are supposed to be beautiful ...
sunny skies ...
 low humidity ...
only the high 80's.
I am thankful for the work that we can get done while hubby has 2 days off in a row!

I am thankful for the new paint color.
I am thankful for sore muscles.
I am thankful for the ability to climb a ladder.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014


Proverbs 27:17 
Iron sharpeneth iron; 
so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.

It happens to me  -  a challenge by a friend that makes me better.

My run times are better when my hubby is beside me.
I am more conscious of my eating when others around me are being careful.
I work harder when I know someone will be checking up on me.

So - this Proverb reminds me to choose my friends wisely.
If I want to be "iron," I must surround myself with "iron."
I want to choose friends who will challenge me,
those who are not afraid to rebuke, challenge, and exhort.

I must also be that friend.
I must maintain a high standard.
I must encourage and challenge my friends.

Get Sharp ... and Keep Sharp. 

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Neat as a Pin

Our present home has fiberboard type siding.
One of the problems with this is that it is easily dented, marred, and torn.
It is a little like cardboard if not maintained -
it soaks up water and turns into a mess.
I am not sure how many moves our home has made to its present location,
but there is evidence to show that this is not its first lot.

To keep the bottom of the trailer from soaking up water and curling up ...
... and to tidy up the general appearance,
trim strips made of cement board were attached around the periphery.

Neat as a pin and hopefully long-lasting!

The gutters have been removed.
The facia at the top has been repainted.
The stripes above are sealed seams.
The discoloration are places that were wire brushed and then primed with "Peel Stop."
It is supposed to be beautiful today -
so I hope to get alot of priming done ... and hopefully a little bit of paint on as well.