Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong. Let all that you do be done with love. I Corinthians 16:13, 14 NKJV

Monday, May 31, 2010

Special Visitors

We have been so blessed to have some very special visitors to our yard. I have not been able to get good photos of them all but I am going to share a few of the photos that I have had a chance to get. Above is a Painted Bunting - at least that is what i was told they were called. This photo does not do this bird justice at all. It was so gorgeous! It amazes me of the beauty that God has given us in nature.

As you can probably tell this poor pigeon had a hurt leg. I just happen to notice it was getting something to eat. And I could not pass up the chance to get a photo of it. And if you will notice in the photo - top left hand side is another visitor. :o) I have seen the big red-headed woodpeckers in our back yard along with a smaller woodpecker. And several other really cool birds. Oh and I can not forget about all of the hummingbirds we have - coming and going. I am hoping that once we have the sun room done - that I will be able to sit out there and watch the birds and stuff and get some more cool photos!

I love this bird house - my husband bought it for me from TSC. It is so cute. The birds really love it.

As do the squirrels. Since this photo was taken I have bought the squirrels a feeder and have put it up. I put black oil sunflower seeds in it for them. They love them!!

Here is the feeder for the squirrels. It did not take them long at all to find it!

Isn't he just adorable?

Oh - and not all of our visitors to our yard have been all that welcome.

One night I noticed a opossum eating from one of my bird feeders. Oh and I have seen skunks in the yard. And actually in my garage. I had put some food for my outdoor cat out in the garage and one night someone had forgotten to turn the garage light off. Well the switch is right outside the back door. So I opened the screen door and was about to reach over to the light switch and I looked down and right there was a big black and white skunk. I was scared to death that I had scared him and that he would spray my car that was right there next to him. But he did not. I am so thankful.
I hope you all have enjoyed the special and not so special visitors that we have had in our yard!
Have a wonderful day! :O)

Sunday, May 30, 2010

...And this be our motto: 'In God is our trust'.

When my husband joined the military, I really begun to understand this song. Before that, I think I was like a lot of Americans - who hear the song and may like it but have not really listened to the words of it. Now it really touches my heart. So on this Memorial Day - I want to share it with you all. A Big "Thank you" to those Men and Women who serve and protect us! I am so thankful for their sacrifices that they have made in order to fight for our freedoms. And I do not want to forget their families - the families really do sacrifice a lot and they deserve our "Thanks," our thoughts and Prayers as do the military personnel on this Memorial Day/Weekend and all through the year.

The Star Spangled Banner Lyrics
By Francis Scott Key 1814

Oh, say can you see by the dawn's early light
What so proudly we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming?
Whose broad stripes and bright stars thru the perilous fight,
O'er the ramparts we watched were so gallantly streaming?
And the rocket's red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there.
Oh, say does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

On the shore, dimly seen through the mists of the deep,
Where the foe's haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o'er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows, half conceals, half discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning's first beam,
In full glory reflected now shines in the stream:
'Tis the star-spangled banner! Oh long may it wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
That the havoc of war and the battle's confusion,
A home and a country should leave us no more!
Their blood has washed out their foul footsteps' pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave
From the terror of flight, or the gloom of the grave:
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

Oh! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved home and the war's desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heav'n rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: "In God is our trust."
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

God Bless the U.S.A. by Lee Greenwood

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Sickness/Pizza and a Movie

Good evening everyone, I hope you all have had a good day. The last couple of nights we have not gotten hardly any sleep. My husband has been so congested and several - I mean several times during the night he would cough and be so congested that he would get choked up along with being nauseous. Well I am a light sleeper so I would wake up each time as well, getting up to try to find some medicine to help him. Well there is a problem with him taking some medicines now. One of the medicines that he is on for Parkinson's can not be taken with most cough meds. due to a certain ingredient. So he was not able to get much relief. Well today he was even worse and now he was running a fever of 101.8. So we decided that he would have to wait till Tuesday to see his Dr. so we decided to take him to CareNow. I am so very thankful that they have web check in. So we checked in and about 2 hours later they called. Then it took us about 30 minutes to get there. Once we got there we were only there for about 5 minutes when they called us back. They did chest xrays, throat culture, and a blood test. And then waited and waited. Come to find out he has an upper resp. infection along with bronchitis. Well he had to do a breathing treatment for a while because his oxygen level was down. Then they gave him a shot and a prescription for an inhaler and two meds. We have picked up the meds and are home. My husband wanted pizza for supper and so I made some. Here is the first one. My son just wanted a cheese pizza and my husband and I wanted veggie pizza.

Let me tell you what - This is the BEST pizza I have every made. The combination of everything that I put on it just came together and was delicious. I made the second pizza - the dough did not seem to spread out as nicely as the first one - partly my fault though because I forgot to cover it while it sat there. Anyway my husband loved the pizza but thought that adding some turkey slices would make it even better.

Jason bought me this Pizzazz Pizza Oven several years ago for Christmas and I am so thrilled he did. I love pizza but we just don't get it very often. So now I can make it when ever I want some! Yay!

Well I am one tired girl. I have a movie to watch and I look forward to spending some time in my sewing room as I watch my movie. I am hoping it is a good movie - "Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day." It has been a while since I have watched a movie and after the day I have had I am totally in the mood to watch a movie.

I am hoping that my husband will sleep better tonight - and maybe I can get some sleep. I also hope you all have a safe and happy week end. Oh and by the way - A GREAT movie to watch this week end "Taking Chance." It is one of those movies that when you get done watching it, you are proud to be an American. I am so thankful to all the Men and Women who serve and protect America!! A Big "Thank You" to them all.

Friday, May 28, 2010

I Must Confess

Over the last few months, I have been questioning God. I am not proud of this at all. In fact, I really hesitated to share this with you all. But I felt that maybe someone else has had these thoughts and questions and if I could share my struggle maybe it could help someone else.

During this last week, all of these feelings came to the surface. I was listening to a preacher on a local radio station. The preacher kept saying that God does everything for His honor. And that sometimes the things do not make sense and are painful but that He does them all for His honor and His glory. Well Satan took advantage of the fact that it has been a rough year, to try to make me doubt God.

Here is where I am really embarrassed to share but I am sure that God wants me to share this with you all today so I must go on. I started having thoughts of God being some kind of control freak and that He just wants to make Himself look good and did not care who got hurt along the way. Now do you understand why I was afraid to share this - but it does not stop here.

Then I went on to other things. The next day I heard the same preacher speaking and I ended up having to just turn the radio off for a while. I was upset and I prayed and told God that I wanted to trust Him and have Faith that all things work for good - not only for Him but for me too. (Romans 8:28)

What God did next really touched my heart. As I thought about God and him allowing us to go through struggles- I thought back to the children of Israel in the Bible and how God led them and sometimes God allowed them to go through hard times. But that the ultimate goal was for them to be His people and that the other nations would be drawn to God because of His working through them.

I thought about the verse about God not wanting anyone to be lost. Then as I was thinking about that, I thought of John 12:32 where it says, "And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to Myself." Then I realized that when the Bible speaks of God doing everything for His honor, I realized it was in order for him to draw people to Him through us. And the only way He can use us is to allow trials to come our way in order to shape our characters. Then we will reflect His character and glory and in doing so, attract people to the God they see in us. Wow! I had such a peace. God had helped bring me out of my doubt and given me an understanding of His ultimate goal for my life.

I also realized how very important it is for us to be studying the word of God - the Bible - for ourselves. And one of the benefits of studying the Bible for ourselves is that when we are struggling or have questions He can bring verses to our minds that help us come to truth. And that is really what we are after.

"Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour." 1 Peter 5:8

Thursday, May 27, 2010

"The Mitford Series" and more

Today my husband and I went back to the Goodwill to check out the couch. It was something that we wanted to at least sit on and see if it was even comfortable. Well - it seemed that it had gotten dirtier since I had seen it on Tuesday. I am guessing that many people had decided to sit on it and rest while loved one shopped. Well we sat on it and it really was not very comfortable - and especially not for $125. Well while we were there we decided to look around.

I have seen where several of the bloggers that I love to read - like The Mitford Series of books. Well I have been looking for some when I have been at Goodwill but have not ever found any. Well today I lucked out and found 3 of them. And for .25 cents for the paperback and 50 cents for the hardback copies - I could NOT pass them up. It seems I ended up with books #3,#6, and #8. Those of you that read them - correct me if I am wrong. And what is so sad is that I really think I have seen one of the books in the series before but did not know what I was looking for. So now I will continue to be on the look out for them. Wish I had have lucked out to find book #1 -oh well - I am thrilled to have found what I did.

Plus I have "The Little House on the Prairie" series to finish reading. Then I found the "Anne of Green Gables" series for $1.00 a piece so I have that series to read as well. So I will be busy for a while. Plus I am also reading "The Refiner's Fire" and the Bible as well. So I am quite busy in the reading dept. And there is a really good chance that I will find all the books - or at least the first 2 books to this series before I even get to reading them. Of course - IF I find book number 1 I might start this series next. What ever I feel is the next step for me to take. It has amazed me that God seems to lead - especially if I let him. And when I let Him lead I am always happier -in the end. Yep- I am not in denial that sometimes where God leads is painful but the outcome is well worth it. That is what I am trying to believe - I am trying to have Faith. The more I exercise it - the more I hope to have!

Well here in Texas it has gotten quite warm. Our highs for this week have been in the 90's. There has been a time here and there that it was cool enough to open up the house for a few hours and I have enjoyed that. I love to let the house air out. But it won't be too much longer till it is too warm - even at the "cooler" times of the day to open up the house.

Well I hope everyone has had a wonderful day! :o)

A How-to on Making Gluten

I was raised a vegetarian till I was 11 years old. Then my Mom had some health problems and the Dr thought that if she added meat to her diet - that it would help her. My very first time I had meat - I had Campbell's Chicken Noodle Soup. I remember her not telling us that it was meat till we were done eating and then being shocked that #1 we had eaten meat and #2 that I have actually liked it. Well I still am not a real big meat eater. I usually only like chicken breast, turkey breast and roast.

My husband was brought up totally differently than I was. Meat was at every meal. And he loved/loves it! But I am so lucky because he is ok with us not having meat at every meal. I do try to have meat at last half to more than half of the meals I make.

So today I want to share something that I enjoy making that helps our budget and gives us something good to eat - that is NOT meat. Meat is pretty expensive and the fake meats are getting very expensive as well. So I have gotten back to making Gluten. I love to make Gluten.

Gluten is the protein of wheat. So it takes the place of protein in your meals just fine. And there are a lot of ways you can use it. However; I usually like it one way - battered and fried.

Yes- there is a lot of work involved in making it but it is well worth the effort.

Let's begin.
First I measure 8 cups of flour into a bowl.
"8 cups hard-wheat flour(high gluten content) (may try using 1 cup gluten flour with 7 cups white flour OR half white flour and half wheat flour OR all wheat)" info from "Cooking By The Book" cookbook by: Marcella Lynch.

I am using my Large Thatsabowl from Tupperware - a favorite of mine. Then I add 3- 4 cups of water - I usually do just fine with 3 cups. Then stir it together. Once it starts coming together then get your hands right in there and knead it for 5 minutes. "Kneading develops the gluten and is important." Then I put the ball in a smaller bowl and I cover with cold water. Directions say to let sit for at least 1 hour and up to 24 hours.
While the gluten is sitting, I will work on getting my broth together. You can really use any type of seasonings to use as your broth. This is what flavors your gluten. This cookbook that I have has 2 different recipes and if anyone is interested in them - let me know and I can get them typed up. But I have not tried these recipes yet because I started making gluten before I got this book and I have have a recipe that I use.

Ok - here is my broth. Normally I use more onions but I was out so I had to use dried chopped onions.

So after your gluten has had a chance to rest covered with water for at least an hour. Then it is time to begin to work again. This time you will take your bowl to the sink, dump out the water and sit it down in the sink under the faucet. As you can probably tell - I switched back to my Big Thatsabowl.
Then add fresh water and start kneading the dough. You will do this and change out the water until the water becomes more clear. At first the water will be pretty milky looking. But your goal is to knead it till the water is about clear. You will lose part of the dough - but what you have left is actually the gluten. And it should have a more rubbery consistency now. You will want to turn your broth up to a boil.

Now for this next part - I use a tortilla press. You will divide your dough into smaller sections.
I think that the gluten pieces that I let sit and rest for about 5 -10 minutes while I was rinsing out the next batch did much better at holding their shape. And take the little pieces into the tortilla press and press it flat. Then you will take the gluten out and put them into the broth. Once you have put all the gluten into the broth - you will want to turn the temperature down to a simmer. And cook the gluten about 45 minutes to an hour.

Then you will want to use a spoon with slots to get your gluten out - put them into a bowl or onto a cookie sheet to cool.

Then you once the gluten is cool - you can bag them up in amount that will be useful to you. I will write on the bag the date and also how many gluten patties I put into the bag.

My family likes it best when I treat it just like fried chicken and batter it and fry it. Yum-Yum!!

Truthfully, there is ALOT of work that goes into making gluten but the results are well worth it. And when I make it, I kind of feel like Ma in "Little House on the Prairie" because I am working hard to provide food for my family. Today I made two batches. I wish I could have made more but my neck was hurting - like between the shoulder blades. Since I knew that it would take about 10 minutes to knead the starch out of the gluten on each of the 2 batches that I made, I decided to stick to just the two batches. And I knew that was probably enough for one day.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Crucibles- Changing Us From The Inside Out

As I read my favorite blogs and see status updates on facebook, I am reminded that there are many people going through struggles right now. In the book I am reading right now, "The Refiner's Fire" he calls these troubles crucibles.

He explains how a crucible is a small, shallow metal dish that he remembers balancing on top of a black metal tripod. And that the Bunsen Burner would have a fierce flame that would be aimed at the dish (or crucible.) Then they would put different things into the dish and see what the reaction would be.

Well in our lives that is what happens to us as well.

I am discovering that these challenges come into our lives in order to test us and to reshape us from the inside out.

OK- back to the book. I am in chapter 3 now and Gavin Anthony lists 6 principles that will provide a little "understanding the painful discipline that God allows for our spiritual growth.

1. The suffering of a life under God's discipline is never meaningless.

2. Suffering as a result of God's discipline is an evidence of His closeness rather than the result of His abandoning us.

3. Our ability to mature spiritually under God's discipline depends on how we choose to view our suffering.

4. The ultimate purpose of God's discipline is always that we will reflect His character.

5. There is no short cut around the pain of God's discipline.

6. The blessing of God's discipline will become noticeable but not necessarily immediately."

There was a lot of really good information under each of these principles and you can read for yourself if you would like by going here. Like I said it has at least the first half of the book accessible to read.

So as you can see the crucibles in our lives can be very painful, but we are not alone and these painful experiences, if we will allow them, will produce a beautiful change from the inside out.

"Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you; " 1 Peter 4:12

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

A Little Of My Day

Today I took 5 trash bags of cans to turn them in. I got $.45 a pound. And ended up getting $7.20. My husband and I have both cut down on soda's so it will be a LONG time before we have that many cans. Well to be truthful it had probably been about year since I took the cans in last time. I put it off as long as possible. But the bags were adding a lot of clutter to our yard - so it needed to be done. And since I was going to be in town - I decided to stop by a local Goodwill. I found a wonderful treasure!!

Isn't it a beautiful couch!?? I loved the wood work and I wish I had taken a close up of the pattern and also of the special detail in the woodwork. I really liked this couch, but with a price tag of $125.00 I just could not afford it. So I took a photo of it and thought I would enjoy it from afar. It looks like a stain on that one arm of the couch but in person you can't hardly see it. Don't know why the camera picked it up so clearly. Anyway I just wanted to share with you all how pretty this couch was. I really appreciate older pieces of furniture - there just seems to be more detail that is something that I really like.

Don't worry, I did find a few treasures that I just could not pass up. The perfume is my husband's Granny's favorite perfume - Avon's Cotillion and the other container with the bird on top. I love the bird. Not quite sure what the bottle is for though. Does anyone know what it is for? Anyway each of these were $1.oo!

Then I found something special for my granddaughter - it will be a couple of years before she can enjoy this but I don't mind. I think it is so cute and she will love it. And for only $2.00 - who can pass that up?

Look at all the cool parts inside the box! Isn't that neat?

Well I hope everyone has had a good day! I am off to watch "The Biggest Loser" - I like to pause the show and then I can fast forward through all the commercials.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Some Healthy Recipes

Haystack Cookies

2/3 cup Peanut Butter
2/3 cup honey
2/3 cup water, cold
1 tsp. salt
2/3 cup flour
2/3 cup oats, quick
4 cups coconut, flaked
1 cup nuts, chopped
2 cups dates, chopped

Mix together. Using a tablespoon, form balls, pressing each ball together lightly. Place each ball on to sprayed cookie sheet. Bake at 350* for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.
Makes 60 cookies

This is a great, healthy cookie recipe that I got from a cooking class that I went to. Each person that attended the classes got a "Diet & Stress Simple Solutions" cookbook/workbook. Wow - I just looked it up and I am SO glad I went to this class - cause it cost quite a bit to buy with the kit. Maybe they sell just the book for cheaper though. It is really more like a workbook with a few recipes added for each chapter. If I come across more recipes that we like I will share them with you all. Actually I do like another recipe of theirs.

Hearty Hummus

Place in blender;
1 -15 oz. Can garbanzo beans, drained, or 2 cups cooked garbanzos
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/3 cup sesame tahini
2 tsp. garlic powder OR 2 cloves, fresh garlic
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup water

Blend ALL ingredients thoroughly. IF you are using a conventional blender and not a stronger machine, such as a Bosch or Vita-Mix, blend recipe one-half at a time. Stop blender. Stir with a spatula. Continue to blend until creamy. Chill.
Makes 3 cups.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Why does God allow suffering?

Several months ago when I started my blog, I realized that I was on a journey. I just did not realize to what extent.
When I walked down to the mailbox yesterday, I was thrilled to find a package addressed to ME! I knew I had not ordered anything recently so looked at the return address to find that a good friend - Thank you Susan- had sent it. Inside I found the book - "The Refiner's Fire: IN ALL THINGS God WORKS FOR GOOD" by Gavin Anthony. I read the introduction and knew that this book had a lot of potential. Then I put the book down to go finish another project that I had going. Later that evening I got the book and began to read the first chapter. As I read I knew that God had used my friend to get me the VERY book I needed to read - NOW.

3 He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name's sake. 4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
Psalms 23:3-4

"Could it be that this path of righteousness actually passes through the valley of the shadow of death? Could going through the valley of the shadow of death also be "for His name's sake""

Page 15

I had never thought of it that way. In these verses and other places in the Bible we are told that we will have times of trouble in our lives, but it is SO refreshing to know that it is all in God's hands and it is taking us on a journey to be the people He intended us to be.

And as I have been studying I have noticed a common theme of why we have to go through the shadow of death and that is to mature His Character in us.

When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.

1 Corinthians 13:11

As I read through the first chapter, I was reminded that we are all on a journey - and where that journey takes us all depends on the choices we make - and I want my journey to take me to the house of the Lord. Just as the sheep followed the shepherd - I want to follow the Shepherd. I want his watch care - and the blessing of Goodness and Mercy to follow me.

The Author goes more into detail to explain what "For His name's sake" means - he says, " we honor the Shepherd most by reflecting His character, and the strange truth is that the Shepherd may accomplish this in us most through permitting us to suffer." Page 17

"Those who are finally victorious will have seasons of terrible perplexity and trial in their religious life; but they must not cast away their confidence, for this is part of their discipline in the school of Christ, and it is essential in order that all the dross may be purged away. The servant of God must endure with fortitude the attacks of the enemy, his grievous taunts, and must overcome the obstacles which Satan will place in his way....But if you keep looking up, not down at your difficulties, you will not faint in the way, you will soon see Jesus reaching His hand to help you, and you will only have to give Him your hand in simple confidence, and let Him lead you. As you become trustful, you will become hopeful....You will find help in Christ to form a strong, symmetrical, beautiful character, Satan cannot make of none effect the light shining forth from such a character....God has given us His best gift, even His only-begotten Son, to uplift, ennoble, and fit us, by putting on us His own perfection of character, for a home in His kingdom" Quote from page 19 of this book - or originally from Messages to Young People - page 63, 64

"The good news is that His purposes are just as good and as noble for us as they were for His people in Bible times, and the transformational blessings He wishes to pour through us are just as great.

God's work in us is the journey of a lifetime. It is often unexpected, sometimes painful, but always under the guidance of a loving Shepherd, and always, always, for good." page 21

3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.

Corinthians 1:3,4

So my conclusion so far - is that suffering is allowed to transform us in the character of God and also so that we may comfort others as we have been comforted by God.

And this is just the first chapter - I just love it when I read a book and I tell that it will be life changing for me. And I am sure that this book will be that way for me. And it gives new meaning to the name of my blog.

I just found on the Internet a page that you get actually read the first 60 pages of this book. How awesome is that? I hope that this link works. If not then what I did was looked up "The Refiner's Fire" by Gavin Anthony and I think it ended up being the first link.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Psalms 23

1 The LORD is my shepherd ; I shall not want . 2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. 3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake. 4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. 5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies : thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. 6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever .
Psalms 23 King James Version

1 A Psalm of David. The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. 2 He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. 3 He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name's sake. 4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over. 6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me All the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the Lord Forever.
Psalms 23 New King James Version

A Psalm of David.
1 The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures ; He leads me beside quiet waters. 3 He restores my soul ; He guides me in the paths of righteousness For His name's sake. 4 Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies ; You have anointed my head with oil ; My cup overflows. 6 Surely goodness and lovingkindness will follow me all the days of my life, And I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever .
Psalms 23 New American Standard Version

A psalm of David.
1 The LORD is my shepherd. He gives me everything I need. 2 He lets me lie down in fields of green grass. He leads me beside quiet waters. 3 He gives me new strength. He guides me in the right paths for the honor of his name. 4 Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid. You are with me. Your shepherd's rod and staff comfort me. 5 You prepare a feast for me right in front of my enemies. You pour oil on my head. My cup runs over. 6 I am sure that your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life. And I will live in the house of the LORD forever.

Psalms 23 New International Reader's Version

We have all heard of Psalms 23 and have all read it - but I just wanted to give a few different versions here for you to read through. Different versions may give different insight into the meaning of the verses. Tomorrow I will share more of the reason why I am sharing this tonight. A Hint - These words have new meaning to me and help me understand why I named my blog -Journeying to the Real Me - I did not realize how very true that statement was/is - until tonight.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Faith Building Part 1

Many years ago, my Mother had a tin box that had a coin hole on the top of it. The box was blue and had Bible verses written all over it. She used this box for her prayer request. It was like she could write out the prayer request and put it in the box and she had given the situation or person to God. Then later, when she needed some encouragement, she would get the box down and read through the prayer request. As she read through them she was reminded of God's awesome power. Some prayer would be answered clear as day some of them in ways that were so surprising to her, but answered just the same.

Well years ago, I used to keep a journal of Prayer Requests and Praises. I would draw a line down the center of each page and one side of that page would be requests and the other side would be praises. I would put dates down with each as well so I would know when I prayed about it. It was so neat to go back later and see how many prayer requests had been answered.

Lately I have started an "A-Ha Book" and a "Promise Book." So I decided it was time I got back to recording my prayer requests and my praises again. In doing so - I pray about things that are important to me and to other people around me. And as I pray I can look back at it and be reminded of different prayer request that I may have forgotten otherwise. And when I am discouraged or lacking faith - I can look at it and see what ALL God has actually done.

I know in my life I will pray about something and many times I totally forget about what I prayed about - which is a really good thing sometimes. There are times that we need to pray about something and totally let go of it and leave it with God. But it is so comforting to go back through my prayer journal and see the way that God is working in my life and the lives of those around me.

These are just a couple of ways that will help build your Faith. We serve an awesome God and too often in this sinful world we become discouraged and we need to be reminded of all the wonderful things that God is doing.

I am really studying "Faith" right now and I am sure that there will be more parts to this post. And really I am tired right now, but this has been on my mind for a few days and I just wanted to get it written out and then that will clear my mind to formulate a lot of the other thoughts I have going on about "Faith."

"and be not faithless, but believing" John 20:27b

I Won Tickets!!!! Plus more info! (Edited)

Well I am super excited today! I just won a set of Two tickets to "Little House on the Prairie: The Musical"!!! How exciting is that!!??!! I am so thrilled. I can't even remember the last time I won something. I just happened to be on the computer and on Facebook at just the right time. I am not sure what the date is - of when the tickets are for but I am eagerly awaiting that information.

Well I have a busy day of getting groceries and running a few errands. I may just have to stop by a local Goodwill on my way - having withdrawals ya know...:O)

Ya'll have a great day! :O)
Edited- Did you notice that Melissa Gilbert will be playing "Ma" - Isn't that exciting! I also wanted to add a little background to this - when I won the tickets I did not for sure know what I had won. Yes - I was VERY excited!! But when I looked up the info I found out that this is the VERY show that I had seen advertised about 4-5 months ago and I had really wanted to see it. I had thought - the tickets would probably be too expensive so did not hold onto much hope that I would get to go! But I do! God blessed me with winning these tickets. Earlier in the week my husband went to the dentist and had to pay almost $700. for his part of the procedure. Plus my son and I really need to go - we did not have the $700. So I was feeling really down.
But finding out that I won the exact tickets that I wanted - that was such an uplifting experience. I can not even remember ever really winning anything before. Oh - enough of me talking - I just wanted to share as Paul Harvey would say "The Rest of the Story"

Thursday, May 20, 2010

A Post of This and That

Well here in Texas is has been getting warmer and warmer. The last day and a half we have had our house shut up and the AC on. And it kind of looks like it will be that way for a while. If it looks like the temps might get into the 60's at night, I will open the house up and see how long we can have it opened up. I have really enjoyed this past couple of months with not having to use the AC or the Heat. During the past month - we have had to run our AC a couple of times for a few hours here and there. It looks like the temps will be in the lower 90's the next 7 days.

I have really been enjoying my crockpot this week. It really is neat to spend just a little time in the morning and get the stuff going and then having most of the meal made by supper time. We have found a few more great recipes. Well see - I find recipes that look like they would be liked by my family and then I make it the way the recipe says. Unless like yesterday a recipe called for 3 bell peppers - well I know that my family does not like a lot of bell pepper so I just put in a handful and it was the perfect amount. But like I said usually I make it the way the recipe says to make it. Then after we eat it - I find out what everyone has to say about it and at that point I adjust the ingredients to fit our family. I was so thrilled to find a recipe called Cheese Enchilada Stack this week and made it and it taste so much like the Cheese Enchilada's that I make - but SO much easier. And it will be so much healthier as well because I will not have to dip each of the tortillas in oil like I was when I made cheese enchiladas. I have a 4 Qt and an 8 Qt crockpot. I think. What is so funny is when my husband bought me the 6 or 8 Qt crockpot I really thought that I would not use it much. But I use it about half of the time. It is great to cook roast's and whole chickens and such. Right now because there are only 3 of us at home my 4 Qt one is working great for most of the things I make - except the list above.

In my Garden: Well last night I spent some time weeding it. It really needed it. I found a nice big cucumber - and one that is not quite ready to pick yet. I also found our first cherry tomatoes - something had eaten into a couple of them, but one was fine to pick and bring in. I am thinking that my zucchini and my yellow squash plants need some fertilizer so I gave them some yesterday. I will watch and see what happens. I might have to move the couple of boxes that are in front of my bookcase that has my gardening books in them. And pull my books out and see what I can find out.

You know there must be a whole lot of people going through trials right now because my Christian Radio Station has been playing all sorts of programs on going through the trials and stresses in our lives. It is so funny because it is like there are many different preachers that they play and most of them are talking about the same thing. Most of them have been very helpful. It reminds me I am not alone - as long as we are living on this sinful world - there will be trials and tribulation. This is not my home - I am just traveling through. Doing my best to hold on to Jesus in Faith - that He knows what is best for me. And I know a few of those of you that are reading my blog and I know for sure that there are several of you that are really going through some hard times - Please know that God loves you with an everlasting love! That means it NEVER ends! And as you hold on to Faith and Hope in Jesus - you will come out the other side like Gold. May we hold onto Jesus - for He is our Rock.

Something Beautiful

One of the blogs that I like to read had this youtube on their blog yesterday. It is such a great song with great lyrics so I wanted to share it with you all today. I hope everyone has a great day!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

My Promise Book and Board

Sometimes I am not very good at remembering things so today when I was writing a thank you note to a friend for a nice card that she has given me recently it popped into my mind that I need to have a "Promise Book!" There are many, wonderful promises in the Bible and I want to have them in a place that is easy to get to when I need to be reminded of such promises. And this book will make the promises so much more special to me because I am making it more personal by adding some of the promises that were specially given to me by friends. I am adding dates and other information as well. That way years from now I will be reminded of the kindness of friends.
This first one if a copy of a card sent to my by a friend. This promise is a very special one to me since it has come to me by many different sources lately. Through people who choose to be "Builders." Sorry there is a glare on the bottom card. It has the promise in the Bible about God finishing the work that He began in you. I like this as well.
Proverbs 62:8 is a new to me - promise. I got a card from a friend this week and this is what she wrote inside. I loved it and made a copy of it to add to my book.

Here is a photo of the actual card from photo #2. I think it is a very nice card. My friend is very creative and thoughtful.
Another things that I have - is a special cork board in my sewing room. On this board I put up special cards and things that I have gotten from friends and loved ones. It is very nice to be able to see how thoughtful people are. And be reminded of all the Love. This idea only came to my mind in the past year or so, but it will be something that I continue to do for the rest of my life. We have enough reminders in life of the bad and evil things - why not make a point to remember to good, kind, and loving things in our lives and for sure the Promises of God!

True Beauty - w/lyrics

Just a reminder to me and you where our True Beauty comes from! What a great reminder it is!! :O)

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Sad Reminders of Unfulfilled Dreams

I wonder how many of you had dreams during your growing up years that just did not work out? Well I do- and today I was sorely reminded of it.

When I was growing up I always thought I would go to college. Never did I even doubt that I would go to college. But things did not work out that way - most of the time I am OK with it. But it took a long time to get to the point of realizing that I was still a valuable person even though I did not go to college and did not get a degree. Please understand that having a degree meant the world to my Mom. And I still can hear it in her voice of how valuable a person is because of the education that they have received. I have come to accept the fact that college just was not in my future and that was not God's plan for my life. However; today I had a rude awaking of this disappointment in my life.

My husband has a cracked tooth and so the dentist is planning on putting a crown on it to keep it together and it was going to cost us $600+ dollars. Well he was looking up on our dental insurance and found out that if he goes to a in network dentist that it should be a lot cheaper. So we had already been referred to a dentist for my son, that just "graduated" from his other dentist. So my husband called the new dentist today and will probably be going to check her out later this week.

Alright - so why did I go off in that direction? Well because I looked up the website for the new dentist and let me tell you - both ladies there are very beautiful women. Young and very pretty ladies for sure. Well I let my mind go where I knew I should not have let it go. Comparing myself to these ladies and against all of their success - I don't compare very high at all. I still struggle with not feeling good enough. So I can see more post in the future about the beauty inside is so much more important to God and that in His eyes we are perfect - coming up. These are things that I need to remind myself of. And when I compare myself to the worlds standards - I will always fall short. But I don't need to be comparing myself to anyone else. I am me and I need to accept me - just the way I am.

It is a good thing that I have copied off onto paper my posts that are more meaty - since I see that I may need to go back and spend some time reading some of the things I have already written.

"Instead, your beauty should consist of your true inner self, the ageless beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of the greatest value in God's sight." 1 Peter 3:4

My Favorite Old Photo!!

This photo above is probably my VERY favorite of my old photos. I wonder if anyone can guess why? Well look closely at the photo. What do you see? I see a lot of old cars and they are cool to look at but look a little closer what do you see beyond those cars? Yep - it is the Alamo! Isn't that the coolest photo ever!!?!! I was so thrilled when I came across this photo. I just wish it had a date on it so I would know exactly when it was taken.
Here is a photo of my husband's Granddad. And do you see the Alamo in the background to our right? Granddad passed away in April 2009. I am thinking he was 92 years old - close to 93. So as you can tell these photos are really old.
Well today I am going to see what I can do to get our house in a little bit better order. With all the construction going on and all - it is much more cluttered than usual. I also need to run to the post office to get some things mailed out. I hope today finds you all doing great!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Texas does have snow- But not today

I thought that I would share a few of my photos from this last February when we had snow. Probably the most snow that we have had in years. I think it was like 8-11 inches and it just depended on where you were of how much you got.
Here is one of the views out my back door. On the tree is my squirrel feeder. They love the black oil sunflower seeds. And I try to make sure there is always a good supply of them in their feeder.

This is a photos of our back porch - which is now being changed into our sun room. But I am so thankful that my husband built a small back porch off the back of it so I can put my chairs and our BBQ grill. And hand some hummingbird feeders off of it as well.

He was actually in the mood to get out into the cold and make a snowman and also some hearts for me. We had some really cute red, plastic heart shaped popcorn bowls that he used to make the hearts.

These next few photos are from our front door. We live off of a fairly busy road. Not as bad as the highway that we used to live one block from but this is still quite a busy road at times.

We are so lucky because across the road is just a field and does not seem to have any plans of any developments there any time soon. You know how you move somewhere and it is quite a nice place to live and then things build up around you - well that is not what we want. The new house we were going to get - would have been just like that and I am SO glad we did not get it. One of these days I will try to get a photo of the area that we were going to move into. To give you an idea of what we would have gotten ourselves into.

Well today we got a really good rain shower. I had plans to weed my garden today but I will have to put that off till tomorrow. What is really neat is that our temperatures got up to almost 90 degrees before the rain showers came in. But now our temps are in the mid to upper 60's.
We are trying to only use the AC when we have to and we are trying to keep the house open as much as possible. We have had to close our house down for a few hours here and there so far. We are so much enjoying these cooler temperatures which are very unusual for Texas.
Hope you all have had a great day!!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

How Helpful A Menu Can Actually Be!

The last couple of months have been unusual months for us. First in January, our oldest son and his wife bought a house. This house is an older home that had been turned into a little salon. So the kitchen was lacking normal cabinets and there was no flooring- well the wood flooring but not in good enough shape to do what ever it is you do to just have wood flooring. Plus the home is a pier and beam home so it was best to put some sort of flooring down just to help with insulation. So anyway, to get back to where I was going. So for the month of January - my husband spent most of his off time at the house working, which meant that he was not home for supper. So I stopped making good home cooked meals. And we would do something quick and easy or go through a drive-thru.

Anyway before that I would usually spend a little time on Wed or Thursday making up a menu for the next week and writing out a grocery list. Now I don't write up a menu like most people do. I pick out about 8 different meals that we would probably like to have during the next week. I don't assign a certain meal to a certain day- sometimes I do but not all the time. Anyway so when Friday came along - which is my normal day for grocery shopping, I would have my list ready and coupons cut out and organized. I would be ready to go. But after a month of us not being home much, and then after that I think I just got kind of discouraged. Probably having a lot to do with not having good home cooked meals that are a lot more healthy for you than quick meals or eating at take out places.

Anyway this past week I FINALLY got a binder that I have out that I have ALOT of recipes in. And I looked through my Crock pot recipes. I have tried some in the past so I knew we liked some of them but then I looked and decided which of the others I would like to try. It just makes life so much easier and cooler if you start your meal in the morning and cook it slowly all day long and then right before it is going to be ready - getting the rest of the meal together.

It felt so good to go to the grocery store prepared - with a good list, knowing that I would be able to make good, tasty and healthy meals for my family. So this morning I got our supper going - which will be It is Coconut Beef Crock pot Recipe from the blog - A year of Slow Cooking. This blog is a great resource if you too are looking for more crock pot recipes. She has every type of recipe that you would want - all using a crock pot. So it is slowly cooking in the kitchen. I also found a great recipe -on a secret recipe type website - can't remember the exact one but I found a recipe for "Toasted Ravioli's" like Olive Garden makes. So I made that for our lunch today. Was was really neat about that is that I had some left over spaghetti sauce and some left over corn. So I headed them both up and used the spaghetti sauce to dip the ravioli's into and the corn as a side dish. I had a salad made up in the fridge already so we had that too.

That is another great tip to eating healthier - Made up a salad - at least the basic salad - I like to put the lettuce and some cut up carrots in a bowl and keep it in the fridge. Then we can add what ever else we want to the salad when we eat it. And it helps us eat more salad. Here is a list of some great toppings to put we put on our salads: sunflower seeds, fake baco bits, walnuts, cucumbers, tomatoes, onions, celery, garbanzo beans and I am sure there are a lot more things - I just can't think of any more right now.

Anyway still have not totally gotten to where I was going when I first began writing this post. There has been so much talk of a Home Management Binder and I am finding that it is a good way to at least keep a lot of helpful information together. So I have been working on putting one together. In my kitchen section I have made copies a monthly calender so that I can write down what we ate each day. That way when I am working on the menu I can refer back to this calender and I can see what we ate last week or last month. This not only gives me ideas of things that I want to add to my menu each week - it also helps me not to over do using any recipe too much. I have done that in the past and my family got SO tired of the recipe - I still love it. It is my "Onion Pie" recipe. I still love this. It tastes a little like onion rings and I eat it at least once every other week if I had to. Plus I think it is an economical recipe, but because I over did it when I first found the recipe - my family is not all that thrilled with it. I still try to add it in ever so often though. LOL :O)

So I have my Binder with a page for each month of the year and I am writing down what we ate and that way it will help encourage me and help me to make up my menu each week. This makes life so much easier. And I am actually happier when I have a plan. There is not many things worse -( well really there is but... ) than having to make a meal for your family and having no idea of what to make.

Well I hope that this has been easy to understand and just not me mumbling away. Sometimes it is the little things in life that make your life so much easier and more enjoyable. Ya'll have a great day!!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Strength...Through Christ

Have you ever had an experience where you knew God was trying to tell you something? Well this happened to me today. I woke up to use the bathroom in the middle of the night, and as I lay back down to go to sleep- "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me" came clear as day to my mind. And at the same time, it was clear as to what this verse means for me.

Sure I have heard this verse used many times and in many ways. Oh- I can accomplish this goal or that goal - because Philippians 4:13 says.... Well this is very true but for me, during this time in my life it has a new meaning. Not only will God give me strength for the things I attempt to do that are in His will but he will especially give me strength to get through the situations and trials that he has allowed into my life.
So basically if He has brought me to it, He will give me the strength to get through it. That is so encouraging to me. It is so good to know that I don't have to do it alone. Never do I have to feel alone because He is there. I realize that there are times in our life's that we feel that He is not there but if we will continue to seek Him and continue to pray "Pray without ceasing"(1 Thessalonians 5:17) we WILL feel the presence of the Lord! Just never give up.

We have to remember: "Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour." 1 Peter 5:8 - Satan is doing everything in his power to keep us from a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Satan very well knows what Jesus has in store for those who put their faith and trust into Him.

May we all remember that if God brings us to it - He will get us through it. We do not have to depend on our own strength.

Friday, May 14, 2010

I Love Old Photos

When my husband's Granddad passed away, the family was trying to get things moved out of the house. And we were lucky to get a couple of small boxes of photo's. We have had lots of fun going through them. What is so sad is that we have NO idea of who half of the people are. So if you have photo's it would be doing your family and future generations a big favor to write names of people and also dates. I say dates because that makes the photo even that much more interesting. Below is a really cool photo that I just love. Of course, the fact that I love Chickens really adds a lot of importance to this photos.

Now this photo below intrigues me because it is so neat to see the way people dressed and all a long time ago. Here is another example of a photo that I would love to know the year it was taken. And even a story behind the photo would be great.

Anyway I hope you have enjoyed a few of the older photos that I love.

I need to get off of here - the weather has calmed down and I really need to try to get to the store to get some groceries. I was going to go earlier but we had some storms and heavy rain come through and I just don't really enjoy pushing a cart full of groceries out to the car and loading the car with them - in the rain. Not fun. Hoping I have bypassed the worst of it.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Remodel Stress and Progress

At the beginning of April my husband gutted out the master bathroom. Above is what it looked like. Well the good news is that we have it about 3/4th of the way finished. We have the toilet and sink back in there so all is good. But right now since the weather is fairly decent we have moved our remodel work to turning our back porch into a sun room. We will get back to the bathroom later when it is too hot to work outside. I am also in the process of trying to decide if I want to paint the walls white or if I want to paint them a really pretty shade of green and if so which shade would be best? So I am part of the reason why the process of finishing up the bathroom has come to a stop. Below is a photo of the tile work. I think it turned out really pretty good especially since my husband has never done that sort of thing before. So about 2 weeks ago or so we got a little unexpected money so my husband decided we would put it towards building the sun room we have always wanted. So we began. Below is the first wall that was put up.

Above is a photo of where we got it to last night. Today my husband and my son have been working on getting the tar paper up and the shingles on. We have had a threat of rain last night(did not get any- Praise the Lord) and then we have a chance of rain today and all the way through Sunday. So they are really trying to get the roof done.

Well with any remodel work there are tools and piles of clutter around that are not usually there and it has caused a little extra stress for me. Plus as long as we are doing these jobs and tracking dirt and stuff in - I really don't think it would be a good idea to clean my carpets that are really in need of being cleaned. Tools on the table and around the dining room floor. And outside around the sun room and all - are boards and tools and this and that. And it can all get over whelming. I guess the truth is that there seems to some negatives that come along with doing a remodel job. The end result will be well worth all the work and the extra clutter. Notice I said extra clutter. I do have a bit of a problem with clutter. I am not the perfect house keeper - like many of the ladies that have blogs. It amazes me the photos that some of the ladies put up of their houses. Their houses are so neat and tidy the photos could be taken and put into a magazine. I don't ever think I will be to that point- it really is not my personality. But Oh I feel the pressure as many other ladies do to - I am sure. I do plan to spend some time in the next weeks time period to go through some boxes of some clothes that I have and pull out what I really don't like to wear. I want to get a pile of stuff to donate. I am tired of all of the clutter and slowly I will take care of that. And in time, when these remodel projects are done then we will have time to put together a shed that we have and then we can get some of the clutter out of the garage and put it into the shed. Then we can organize the garage to be a more user friendly place.

Ok - so I just wanted to update you all on what was going on around here. Last night I was stressing a bit about it all and so I have been doing what I can to help things look better. I am picking up branches and all and taking them to the burn pile and stacking some of the extra wood in piles, instead of being all over the back yard, and getting nails picked up with a handy magnet we have that is connected to a handle.

Well I better get off of here - there are things I can do today to work at getting the place looking nicer. Some weed eating that I can do and more nails that need to be picked up before some one steps on them.

Hope you all have a wonderful evening!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

"Be Still,..."

As I have shared with you all - this past year has been a very tough one, dealing with the loss of about 5 family members, disappointments, and the diagnoses of Parkinson's for my husband. These things have been very hard to deal with. And there have been times that I have questioned God, asking Him why He is allowing these things to happen.?

To better understand me you would have to know that I like peace. I am not a drama queen at all. I may be emotional at times, but I am not the type of person that thrives on drama or problems. I also don't really like change. The older I get, I seem to be handling change a lot better and that is good.

So this last year has had a lot less peace in it than years past. And as I said I have wondered why? Then one day, after leaving church I began to think about how my life was going and all of a sudden I heard some words that the preacher had said but this time it was directed to me! - "I love you too much to leave you where you are." Oh what a wonderful thought. God loves me too much to leave me where I am. He is guiding my life in a way to help me become the person he wants me to be. Oh and let me tell you - it has been painful at times. I know I have cried or fought off tears more in the last year than I have in my whole life.

It seems that sometimes God has to allow difficult situations to come into our life's in order that we will be pushed into the direction that we need to go. But we do not need to be afraid.

"For I, the Lord your God, will hold your right hand, Saying to you, 'Fear not, I will help you." Isaiah 41:13

Not only will he help us, but if we will allow Him to guide us and continue to put our trust in Him, we can have Hope and Faith that the outcome will be well worth any pain along the journey.

"But He knows the way that I take; When He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold." Job 23:10

And we all know what major trials Job went though. Oh my! And he stayed true to God ALL the way through his trials and pains. What a godly man! I don't think I am that strong at all, but I know that I would much rather have God in my life and some trials along the way, than not have God in my life. So I continue to choose to turn my life and my will over to God. And when life's trials begin to feel overwhelming to me, I will hold on to a wonderful promise:

.."Be still, and know that I am God." Psalms 46:10a

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

This and That... from Monday

Yesterday when I got off of work, I had several errands to run. Well one of my errands was to go by Wal-Mart and pick up a few things. Well while I was there I thought that I would go check out their fabric section to see if there were any fabrics that I would want to get to make some place mats with. Well guess what I found? 90% of the fabric was GONE. A Wal-Mart in another nearby town had their fabric dept downsized a year or two ago, but we were hoping that Wal-Mart would leave this fabric department along. Well I was so disappointed. I do buy most of my fabrics from Quilt Stores- that way I know I am getting good quality fabrics. But I still enjoyed looking at Wal-Mart to see what they had and picking up treasures now and then. I especially enjoyed shopping the fabric department around the holidays. They always had a good selection of holiday fabrics. And do you know why they are down sizing the fabric department? To make more room for Party favors and such. Now I don't know about you but I think they had plenty of party supplies at Wal-Mart. Oh well, I guess it depends on what is important to you.


As many of you know, I am reading through "The Little House on the Prairie" series. Last night I finished the second book - "The Little House on the Prairie" book. It was sad to read about all the cool things that they planted in their garden and how excited they were as they look forward to the harvesting of these things. And then to find out that they had to move. It broke my heart that they had to leave everything that they had worked so very hard for. And then when I looked at the back of the book and saw that "Farmer Boy" was the next one in line- I thought Oh No I have to leave Laura and her family just dangling for a while. But I am sure I will love this book as I have the others so far. There is something so therapeutic about reading these books. And what is so neat about it is that some of the things in the books that I enjoy so much - I am able to implement into my own life.

As a child we had chickens two different times (only for short periods of time- before me moved again) and I loved them. And now God has blessed us with the ability to have chickens of our own. It is such a blessing to me. To watch them and learn from them has been so valuable to me. And gardening - that is another thing that intrigues me about these books is them working their land. And so I have a desire now to be a better Steward of the land that God has provided and slowly we are working towards using it more wisely. Last night my husband built a small raised garden bed for some multiplying onions that my Dad and his wife had sent. I, so look forward to seeing what they will do. And I also have plans - only in my mind right now but I want to eventually have a Blackberry patch and also a Strawberry patch. We have a couple of Strawberry plants now but I want to build a raised bed or something that they will be able to have room to spread out. Many more plans are in my mind and heart and I am just hoping that this year we will have the chance to work toward accomplishing these plans.

Oh and one of the reasons why I needed to go to Wal-Mart was to get whole milk and heavy cream. This past week-end my husband went to a kitchen store at a nearby Outlet Mall. And while he was there look what he found:

Pure Indulgence™ 2 Qt. Frozen Yogurt-Sorbet & Ice Cream Maker by Cuisinart. And he got a very good deal on it. We had noticed lately how very expensive ice cream was getting to be at the store. Not only are the prices going up - but the size of containers is getting smaller and smaller. What I like about this is that we know exactly what ingredients are in what we are eating and I can make yogurt and sorbet! Another very nice thing is that you do not have to use rock salt. It has a tub in it that is where you put the ingredients to make the ice cream - or what ever and you stick it into your freezer and freeze it before you begin. Anyway we have only used it once so far - The ice cream turned out pretty good but I will have to use it again before I can tell you for sure that it was well worth the money that was spent on it. But it was very thoughtful of him and we had alot of fun making our first batch of ice cream. We made Rocky Road and there is a chance that he used too many marshmallows and that made it harder to freeze - but when we got it out of the freezer it was not very solid- so that is why I say we will have to do it once more to get a better idea.

Lots to do today so I better get off of here and get busy. Ya'll have a wonderful day!! :O)

Monday, May 10, 2010

when i say i'm a christian by Wesley Hart

i'm not shouting i'm clean living
i'm whispering i was lost and now i am found and forgiven
when i say i'm a christian i don't speak of this of pride
i'm confessing that i stumbled and i need a Christ to be my guide

when i say i'm a christian i'm not trying to be strong
i'm professing to be weak and i need His strength to carry on
When i say i'm a christian i'm not bragging of success
i'm admitting that i've failed and i need God to clean up my mess

when i say i'm a christian i'm not claiming to be perfect
my flaws are visible but God believes i'm worth it
when i say i'm a christian i still feel the sting of pain
i have my share of heartaches so i call upon His name
when i say i'm a christian i'm not holier than thou
i'm just a simple sinner who received God's grace somehow

This is a poem by someone I know. He has a wonderful testimony and has a great singing voice. He kind of reminds me of Elvis. If you ever have a chance to get to hear his testimony and him sing- it will be well worth your time.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Hoping Everyone had a Wonderful Mother's Day!

I am hoping that you all had a wonderful Mother's Day!!! I sure did. The weather has been perfect and then to be able to spend time with my whole family together once again was priceless. We had a great visit with our son, and his wife Lauri and our precious Granddaughter . Isn't she a doll?

We had a barbecue and potato salad and fresh corn on the cob straight from the grill. It was so good. We did have a little scare tonight though. Well I have shared how my husband is building a sun room on the back of our house - on our porch? Well since the walls are up and the windows and doors are all in - we thought it would be safe to let our cats start exploring out there. They were timid at first but then started to really check it out. Well later - as I was taking outside I heard something in the garage - well we have a spot that a small animal could come down from the attic. So I did not know if maybe a squirrel had gotten into our attic or what. Well then I noticed I had not seen one of our cats for a while. So I decided to feed our fish. Because when I feed the fish - after the fish are feed - my cats each get some treats. So I figured this would entice the cats out of their hiding places. Well all but 1 came to get treats. My husband then had me pull my car out of the garage and he went up into the attic and sure enough - there was our little black cat - Stewie- On the other side of the house. So my husband had to go over there and get him and bring him down and back into the house. I am SO thankful that we caught it when we did cause this is an inside cat and I am thinking if he had have stayed out there too long he would have gotten a little more comfortable with going and checking out the outside world and we may not have found him after that. All is well that ends well though.
Doesn't he look like an innocent kitty cat that would not try to run away from home?

Oh by the way - the quilts in each of these photos were made by my husband! Yep- he quilts too! He even has his own stash. He has made quite a few quilts actually. I am thinking 5 but I could be wrong. The one that our granddaughter is laying on - he made it for her. And then the one that Stewie is laying on is one that he has in the living room. We have even taught both of our boys to quilt. And they have each put together at least one quilt a piece. The oldest son has actually made 2 of them.

I hope you all have a wonderful week! :O)