Thursday, October 30, 2014

Partner Projects

Today I am thankful to be starting a project with my hubby.
It is another house project.
I am thankful for the funds needed to complete the project.
I am thankful for the health and strength to do it on our own.
I am thankful for the know-how to take care of our new home.

We started tonight.
Hoping to finish on Friday and Saturday ---
the forecast is calling for rain/snow/wind on Saturday.

If you are reading this on Friday,
would you pray that the weather holds until the project is completed?

Don't worry ...
I'll show you a picture on Tuesday in a return to Tuesday Transformations!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Little, But Wise (Part III of IV)

Proverbs 30:27 
The locusts have no king, 
yet go they forth all of them by bands;

The ant is diligent and prepared.
The coney seeks a strong rock, foundation, protection.
The locust understands the value of unity and teamwork.

Do I value the efforts of others?
Do I work well with others?
Am I working toward a common goal with others?
Of course there must be a commonality -
and that commonality should be Christ.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Personal Goals

Nearly 3 years ago I began the Couch to 5K program.
I completed the program, but weather, schedules, or disinterest caused me to stop running.
I restarted the program early this summer.
I went slow.
I repeated some weeks numerous times.
I allowed myself grace.
I invited hubby on my runs to push me.

Yesterday, I saw a personal best.
I did my 3 miles in 32 min. 55 sec.
4 minutes of that was a warm up walk and I walked another 1 1/2 min. in the middle.

My goal is 30 minutes.
Eventually I will do my 5 min. warm up and then start the 3 miles.
Maybe ... but if not, the challenge is beneficial and keeps me motivated.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Exciting Weekend

It has been a big weekend in Shelby.
Did you notice the ebook available on my sidebar?
We published the ebook on Saturday night.
I requested our proof of the print book this morning 
and hopefully by early December it too will be ready for distribution.

Why write books?

Hubby was encouraged to write as he went through Bible college.
In class after class, he was assigned reading from liberal commentaries and books
that belittled the text or caused doubts and confusion.
When he approached some of the teachers, he was told that there just were no conservative works.

Hubby writes because it organizes his thoughts before preaching a passage.

Hubby was encouraged to write because there are small churches looking for Sunday School material for godly men who just need a little help and direction.
In like fashion, there may be missionaries who need books for their institutes for training pastors and layworkers.

Some facts about the publications:

We are self publishing through
The ebook will be available on many sites (including Amazon) within 8 weeks.
The ebook is in "epub" format but a converter can be used to make it compatible with kindle.
We encourage purchase through lulu because they take the smallest "cut."
The print book will only be available on or through us directly.
For the most part, we will let lulu take care of things because they do print on demand,
but if in the early release time many folks show an interest, we will do a volume order at a discount and be able to pass it on to the readers.
For the book of Malachi, we intend to give complementary copies to many friends, family, some pastors, and some missionaries - this will give them an idea of hubby's style to know if future works would be beneficial to them.
A study in Romans is already in the proofing stage and should be available in early 2015.
A study in Daniel will be available in later 2015.

Slip it in Anywhere

It looks like we will have a little Indian Summer for a couple of days.
It sure has been pleasant to have some cool days.
Of course, I have been relishing the open windows,
no a/c, and no heat!

I am enjoying the NY Macintosh apples that show up in our stores.
I eat them all day, but hubby can only have them cooked.
I like apple crisp and apple pie alot, but ...

I recently tried two recipes that added apple.
The first was Italian Sausage sauteed with peppers, onions, and APPLES!
What a pleasant surprise and I am glad that I tried it.
The second was baked sweet potatoes and apples -  YUMMY!
It reminded me of Thanksgiving and may show up on our Thanksgiving table this year.

Roasted Sweet Potatoes and Apples

3 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
2 apples sliced
3 Tbsp coconut oil, melted
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp dried rosemary

Preheat Oven to 425*
Combine all ingredients on baking sheet rubbed with oil.
 Bake 25-30 minutes, turning once, until browned and sweet potatoes are tender.

This week's menu:
Sunday: Italian Pork Sandwiches (College Students Over)
Monday: Oven Fried Chicken with Marinara over Spaghetti Squash "noodles"
Tuesday: Italian Chicken Sausage Risotto
Wednesday:  Smoky Sloppy Joe Roll-ups
Thursday: Pecan Crusted Tilapia 
Friday:  Bacon-Apple Turkey Meatloaf
 Saturday: Spanish Rice (?) - more college students over

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Nearing the Finish Line

Though I am jogging again,
it is not my thankful post for the week.

This week, I am thankful to be nearing the end of a BIG project.
Hubby has written a book
and the editing of a print version and an ebook is now complete.
We are waiting on the completed cover
and then we will wait for the physical proof copy.

The springboard from a free Template Maker on Amazon -
not fully customizable.

Found a designer on
His first interpretation.

Asked to soften the font -
misunderstanding and he softens the edges.

Back to fixing the font.

Font fixed -
just 2 minor changes coming.

I am thankful for a reason to learn and practice new skills.
I am thankful for the sites available to help in such endeavors.
I am thankful that the editing of the next one will be that much easier.
I am thankful.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Little, but Wise (Part II of IV)

Proverbs 30:26 
The conies are but a feeble folk, 
yet make they their houses in the rocks;

The small ant was wise in its preparations.
The coney recognizes its weakness
and seeks protection.

Makes me think of the childhood song
"The Wise Man built his house upon the rock."

Where are you building your life and home?
Are you trusting in the world and its riches?
Are you trusting in yourself?
Are you trusting in a husband or boyfriend?

Run to the ROCK!
Seek your protection in the right place.

Psalm 18:31 
For who is God save the LORD? or who is a rock save our God?

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Simple Encouragement

Not too long ago,
we were able to meet family members of one of our college students.
It is nice to meet family and to understand the students better.
It is nice to speak with knowledge when referring to family members.

As I met a married sister,
I said, "and you used to be a [insert maiden name]?"
Both the sister and her husband beamed.
She was not embarrassed by her birth family,
but she was pleased to be married and identified with her husband.

Oh how that encouraged my heart.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Loving Autumn

Just feeling invigorated by the fall weather ...
... and the smaller electric bill.

I enjoy my weekly house cleaning with the windows open.
I love the apple candles burning.
I love the leaves littering the yard.
I enjoy baking without worrying about heating the house.

Despite the cooler temps,
we are still enjoying salads as well.
We have been trying to avoid High Fructose Corn Syrup,
so I have been making salad dressing.
Hubby quickly got tired of Vinaigrettes,
so I searched further ...
found a winner here.

Avocado Caesar Salad Dressing

1 ripe avocado
5 cloves garlic
2 Tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
3/4 c water
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp sea salt
2 Tbsp nutritional yeast (add the "cheesy" taste)

Combine all ingredients in blender.  Blend until smooth.

This Week's Menu Plan:
Sunday: Church Dinner - Mongolian Beef
Monday: Leftovers
Tuesday: Baked Coconut-Curry Chicken Breasts
Wednesday:Skillet Pork Chops with Greek Mushroom Sauce
Thursday: Chili
Friday: Italian Chicken Sausage with Apples and Onion
Saturday: Caribbean Jerk Burgers

Thursday, October 16, 2014

The Blessing Mobile

This should have been the post for last week,
but ...
I am still thankful this week.

I am thankful for our miracle car.

When we set out to move to WA in 2004,
hubby decided that we should be a one-car family.
We put both the Barbie car (a purple Neon) and the F-150 up for sale.
Which would sell first?  Who would give up their vehicle?
They both sold the same day!

We started searching for a car.
My dad always told me not to go car shopping when you were desperate.
We had sold both cars AND were moving to WA within 2 weeks.
I was nervous.

Our miracle sat on the Ford lot.
It was already one year old, but was still brand new.
It was a 5-speed ... my favorite.
It had no A/C.
It had an AM/FM Cassette player (easily remedied if was wanted).
and ... no one wanted it!

I believe that the dealer requested $12,000 for it.
Hubby offered $8.
They took it!

At the time, hubby trusted that it would take us to WA and get us through Bible College.
But here we are ...
we watched the odometer flip 2 Sundays ago.

This car has been a blessing.
Low maintenance.
Good gas mileage.
Now I have my eyes on 300,000.

I am also thankful that my hubby humors me and my blog.
We took an extra spin around the block so that I could have a picture right on 200,000!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Little, but Wise (Part I of IV)

Proverbs 30:25 
The ants are a people not strong, 
yet they prepare their meat in the summer;

I am nearing the end of the trek through Proverbs.
In fact, since I had already blogged about the Proverbs 31 woman,
 I thought that my last Wednesday post would be the last of this series.
Until I thought on this section.
Little, but wise.

How many people feel little, small, insignificant?
Do you ever wonder what you can do?
Do you tend to belittle your role in the home?

Be like the ants -
busy, diligent, active, ... they look ahead, they prepare

Can you be like the ant in your home?
Are you diligent and prepared?

Make an effort to bless your home by planning ahead.
Does everyone have clothes to wear tomorrow?
Do you have a plan for each meal tomorrow?
Will you be diligent to clean something in the house today?
How will you bless your husband (or brother or dad - single girls)?
Is there something you can do today to free up time later?

As I right this,
my mind flew to Christmas cards.
I like to hand-make cards and write personal greetings in each.
It is not too early to start those.
I need to start planning my Sunday School lesson and corresponding worksheet early in the week.
I need to plan to be an intentional blessing to someone in the church each week.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

What's Happening While I Wait?

Thinking about Elijah for the weekly Sunday School lessons...
Another character with wilderness experiences.
Why the wait in the wilderness?
Why the call to a widow outside of Israel?
While Eljah was waiting,
God was preparing a heart - a Gentile heart.

What a reminder when my heart wants to get impatient.

God is still working.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Permission Granted

It has been over a week since I last posted.
I was living life.
I was resting.
I gave myself permission to cut some things ...
not permanently, but for a break.
So, I took a break from blogging.
I took a break from exercise.

I tried new recipes.
I finished editing hubby's first book.
I edited again when I found some setup issues.
I started researching cover designs.
(BTW:  If any of my readers happen to be a graphic designer
or a photoshop pro and want to design a book cover ... let me know)  :)

Sometimes you just need to grant permission to relax.

But, now I am back.
I woke with hubby this morning,
T-tapped, made breakfast, packed a lunch,
got a gift ready for one of our college kiddos celebrating a birthday,
got wash in the machine,
did an "indoor" run,
and am now ready for some Monday cleaning.

Today also includes making some grain free granola
and trying a new cookie recipe - something with ginger and molasses.
I made the granola last week and it was a hit.

Grain-Free Granola

1 c raw almonds
1 c raw cashews
1/4 c raw pepitas/pumpkin seeds
1/4 c raw sunflower seeds
1/2 c unsweetened coconut flakes
1/4 c coconut oil
1/2 c honey
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp seal salt
1 c dried fruit

Preheat oven to 275*.
Blend first 5 ingredients in blender or food processor to break into smaller chunks.
(I used pecans instead of cashews and doubled the sunflower seeds because I did not have pumpkin seeds.)
Mix melted oil, honey and vanilla.  Coat dry ingredients in large bowl.
Spread on baking sheet.  Bake 20-25 minutes or until lightly browned stirring once or twice.
Remove from eat and add fruit and sprinkle with sea salt, pressing the mixture together to form a flat surface,
Cool for about 20 minutes.  Break into chunks and enjoy.

This weeks meal plan:

Sunday: Cubed Steak with mushrooms
Monday: Cajun style Turkey Lettuce Wraps
Tuesday:  Bacon Meatloaf
Wednesday: Cajun Stuffed Peppers
Thursday: Lemon-Italian Herb Chicken
Friday: Baked Coconut-curry Chicken Breasts
Saturday: Ground Turkey Chili

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Ignore, Thank, or Curse

Proverbs 30:8-9
 Remove far from me vanity and lies: 
give me neither poverty nor riches; 
feed me with food convenient for me:
 Lest I be full, and deny thee, and say, Who is the LORD? or 
lest I be poor, and steal, and take the name of my God in vain.

How do you view your life?

Are you in "cruise mode"
just ignoring God and expecting the best?

Are you angry and bitter - 
mad that God hasn't given you more?

Or do you accept that God is a good God?
Psalm 145:9 
"The LORD is good to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works."