Sunday, December 30, 2012

DPP 30...hello and goodbye

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Enjoyed watching the sun rise into the sky while leaving Florida this morning.  
I am reminded me that in saying hello to one thing, I must also, in turn, say goodbye to another at the same time.  
Thinking of this in terms of places and things, it's so much easier than with people.  I always think and believe that I have pep talked myself into being "ready" to say goodbye.  Practice it; go over how I think it could or should go in my head, and still fall apart in the end.
I am not a fan of goodbyes.  Life happens and people change.  Some things just do not happen the way I think it should some times.  
2 Corinthians 5:17 even speaks of the going and coming of things...
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away, and look, new things have come.

2012 has been a year to find peace with and enjoy being free from things that have held me back or tied up my time previously.  A year to freely give over to God treasures in and of my heart that I have held onto so tightly for so long now.  One also to realize just how freely God offers Himself to me, even when I do not deserve His goodness and grace.
I have been challenged tonight by these words in Matthew 10:5-8...
Jesus sent out these 12 after giving them instructions: “Don’t take the road leading to other nations, and don’t enter any Samaritan town. Instead, go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. As you go, announce this: ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those with skin diseases, drive out demons. You have received free of charge; give free of charge.
I am not always quick to give others the same chance I have been given.  
As God helps me, I pray for 2013 to be different in a way my heart knows even if others do not see it outwardly.  However, if something on the inside changes, it will most likely bubble over to the outside...all to the glory of God!
God is good...no matter what.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Friday, December 28, 2012

dpp 28...all in a day's work

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Picture = 1000 words

DPP 27...too busy having fun

Late on the posting, but there is a great excuse for it! :)

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Wednesday, December 26, 2012

dpp 26: sea level

Untitled by JanetRose531
Untitled, a photo by JanetRose531 on Flickr.
Notice our elevation...

random thoughts

Looking over posts that remain in draft form, I have had a chance to remember some moments and events that have brought words to mind.  However, for some reason they never came together in a post this year.  A quote, a thought, a verse, a few sentences...just random things floating around in this mind of mine.

1/9...A few days ago, I purchased my ticket to Alaska.  It ceases to amaze me that the excitement is new each and every year.  If there were an "excited-o-meter", it may just read a little higher each year, too. :)  Just typing these words, butterflies flutter.  
There are so many God moments each and every year...before, during, and after...my mission trip to Alaska.  He is why I went the first time.  He is why I go back.
1/16...getting lost...The law was lost in the temple (Josiah's guy found it again).  Jesus was left in the temple during a religious time.  Can I or do I lose sight of God in church?
1/22...it's the small things...1 Kings 19:11-13  The LORD said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the LORD, for the LORD is about to pass by.”  Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. 12 After the earthquake came a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. 13 When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave.
2/3...walls...“Sometimes you put walls up not to keep people out, but to see who cares enough to break them down.” ~unknown
2/16...“As a rock on the seashore he standeth firm, and the dashing of the waves disturbeth him not. He raiseth his head like a tower on a hill, and the arrows of fortune drop at his feet. In the instant of danger, the courage of his heart sustaineth him; and the steadiness of his mind beareth him out.”
3/12...“The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.” ~Frederick Buechner
100 sleeps (as we refer to it in our household when counting down the days until a big event) from now, Team Alaska from Northside Baptist will be heading out for the Last Frontier on a mission trip to innercity Anchorage. I will already be in Anchorage awaiting the team's arrival for what I hope to be a life changing trip for those coming and those being ministered to while we are in Anchorage.
I consider myself truly blessed to be able to return for my 5th adventure with GraceWorks.  Even better is having a team come up to join me in the journey!  I am just as excited for them as I am for myself.
God is so good!
3/31...clouds...Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under the trees on a summer's day, listening to the murmur of water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time. ~John Lubbock
When we look up, it widens our horizons. We see what a little speck we are in the universe, so insignificant, and we all take ourselves so seriously, but in the sky, there are no boundaries. No differences of caste or religion or race. ~Julia Gregson
7/7...something's missing...I have written, deleted, and rewritten the first line of this post numerous times now.
Just as with what is on my heart, the words are missing and nothing seems to fit just right.
One little change, one difference can have an affect on the bigger picture.  It's distracting; focusing on the missing piece takes away from the beauty of it all.
Thankfully this week I have been too busy during the day to think about what has changed that much, but there are still moments, as the evening brings a calm, when it hits home.
I miss what's missing.  
The shared memories, the familiar places revisited, the sharing of the day's events...
Keeping them to myself just isn't the same.
8/30...Every morning I wish it were night again, for it is only at night and in the depth of my dreams that I can feel you, and you still belong to me. ~ AAC
9/10...soulmate..."Each of us unveils the best part of one another. No matter what else goes wrong around us, with that one person were safe in our paradise. Our soulmate is someone who shares our deepest longings, our sense of direction...Our soulmate is the one who makes life come to life. " Richard Bach
12/16...words come slowly...My heart is broken for the families and friends of those who lost their lives in Connecticut Friday.  As the first headline crossed in front of me on Friday, tears welled in my eyes and spilled over as the reality of what had happened sank in.  I wanted to hope that they were wrong and that it really wasn't an elementary school...not a kingergarten class...but they were not wrong.
No tragedy has impacted me like this one has.  As Pastor Brian said this morning, I agree, this time is different.  This was personal...even if I know not a single person from Newtown, CT.  
I was saddened and angry by the event that took place at Sandy Hook Elementary.  I was perturbed at those who immediately went into gun control rants.

You have now read my mind.  :)

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

dpp 25: MERRY CHRISTMAS

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Merry Christmas!

The boys woke up around 6 and the Christmas morning activity began a few minutes later.  It is such fun to watch them enjoy the moments of discovering what is under the festive paper and bows!  Here they are about to open their stocking stuffers after the under the tree presents were already opened, hence the hats. 
Well, I had an epic camera failure this morning...all the photos I took with my camera were not there when I downloaded them to my laptop.  Apparently we had a memory card issue.  Thankfully, I had also taken a few with my phone.  I am also thankful it was captured on our video camera.  But, there is still a little disappointment and lack of trust in my camera now...hopefully, it was an isolated case. 
Everyone is enjoying their presents now and breakfast is being cooked up.  It has been a great beginning to our Christmas Day!

Monday, December 24, 2012

DPP 24: Christmas Eve!

Unwrapping a present from Grandma and Grandpa Roth...

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A trampoline!
Bring on the bouncing...better brace myself for what may follow... :)

Sunday, December 23, 2012

DPP 23: night watchmen

Presents were dropped off today for our extended family Christmas tomorrow.  Boys have taken on the responsibility of guarding the presents through the night hours.  It's not in the picture, but Tim even has his policeman's hat beside him.  Love these boys!

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Saturday, December 22, 2012

Friday, December 21, 2012

DPP 21: Winter

It's the first day of winter, but the only snowflakes found here are of the crafted variety...

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Thursday, December 20, 2012

DPP 20: fire season

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It's beginning to feel a lot like Christmas...so we are enjoying the first fire of the season.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

DPP 19: good while it lasted

good while it lasted by JanetRose531
good while it lasted, a photo by JanetRose531 on Flickr.
Any guesses as to what is missing from this scene?
There should be an amazing shot of the Eiffel Tower displayed on the background of my laptop. There should be icons and shortcuts that surround that photo.
Sad to say that the laptop is a goner. No longer is the sound of quiet beeps and whirs heard when the power button pressed.
One day I will remove the shell of a once well used computer from my teacher's desk...but until then, I am thankful for my Dell laptop that was a present last Christmas because this one lasted an entire year longer than the computer dude thought it would.
Goodbye, HP...it was a good 6 years!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

dpp 18...under the mistletoe

Live mistletoe, in fact, growing in one of our trees.

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I'm going to miss this next Christmas.  Hopefully we will find some mistletoe at our new property, too!

Monday, December 17, 2012

DPP 17: HaPpY BiRtHdAy!

Tim's 9th Birthday Breakfast...

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He has been a joy all 9 years!  Love my Baby...and am so proud of the little man he's growing into these days.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

DPP 16: In the Moment

My boys are held a little closer and tighter...finding joy in each moment!

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Saturday, December 15, 2012

DPP 15: eternity

P1160478“For God so loved the world that he gave his One and Only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him. Whoever believes in Him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s One and Only Son. This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God.”    John 3:16-21

dpp 14: gift

This is what came in the prettiest bag at our SS class Christmas party...

Untitled


As for the rest of the evening's activities and gifts, we are all under a "what happens at the party, stays at the party" agreement.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

DPP 13: Pinterest project

For our church dinner last evening I made Rice Krispies treats ornaments.  I saw how cute they were on Pinterest and just wanted to make the ordinary a little less ordinary and a lot more Christmas-y.

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Fortunately, we had a few leftover, so I snapped a photo of them for today's entry.
Now, for some reason, they look cuter in the photo than in person.
I made smaller ornaments than the Pinterest post, getting 23-24 ornaments from the normal Rice Krispies Treats recipe.  Since mine were smaller I chose to use miniature marshmallows as the ornament hanger thingamajig.  I also used green and red (red bulb is not visible in this shot) food coloring in the marshmallow goo before adding the crispy rice cereal.
They weren't hard to make, but very time consuming.  And, I did not like how firm the treats were in the end.  Too hard for my liking...I like gooey, stretchy treats.  By my third batch, the ones without food coloring, I had a better end result.  I do not think the food coloring had anything to do with the firmness, but maybe all the manhandling that it takes to form the round balls does.  I took the last batch off the heat earlier than the first two batches, too, but they ended up being the hardest to form into balls because they weren't staying together very well.  I was hoping no one got the idea to start throwing them at each other...the green ornaments are pretty solid and would leave a mark.
I am not sorry I tried this project, but I highly doubt I will ever do it again for the masses.  Maybe the magic is in making only six large ornaments.   For me, the magic is in the original gooey, marshmallowy, easy to bite into, square treats.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

DPP 12: pecans

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The "free" pecans are costing me a lot of time...I might have them all shelled out by next November when the next crop is ready.  {smile}

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

dpp 11...santa bunny

The boys did not want to take down their Easter bunnies in the classroom, so we dressed them up for Christmas.


PicMonkey Collage

Monday, December 10, 2012

DPP 10...raindrops

In a drought, a rainy day is very welcome.

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Sunday, December 9, 2012

dpp 9: lights


Our Christmas Tree...in bokeh prettiness.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

dpp 8...bff

My bff knows me and my love of all things family, Christmas, and penguins.  Her gift last Christmas combined them all...♥!

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Friday, December 7, 2012

DPP 7: windows

Untitled by JanetRose531
Untitled, a photo by JanetRose531 on Flickr.
The windows are going in! So exciting!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

DPP 6...busy day

We had a busy day with school, science project, piano practice, and our business Christmas party.  I snapped this photo of the boys after we arrived home tonight.  Their eyes look so sleepy...mine do, too, but you just can't see them.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

DPP 5: cookies

Packaged up some of the cookies I have been baking the past two days...so yummy!

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Tuesday, December 4, 2012

DPP 4: mirror image?

Maybe a fun house mirror image.  I like the concept of the photo, though.  We'll have to try it using a glass ornament one day.  It was fun and we had a lot of laughs as we saw the results.
Memory made.
Mission accomplished.

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Monday, December 3, 2012

DPP 3: football

It was a great afternoon for a little backyard football!  Love these boys!

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Sunday, December 2, 2012

DPP 2: star

The boys have been wanting a tree for their room for a couple of years now.  They found one that they liked last month, but decided they would wait to buy it until December.  I surprised them and purchased their tree for them over the weekend.  They had fun setting it up this today after church.  I walked in and found the tree complete with a "star" on top.
Loved Tim's creative thinking and Alex's cooperative spirit to agree to his brother's choice of tree toppers.
The other two Angry Birds friends that Tim has are also on the tree as "ornaments".  So cute!

Saturday, December 1, 2012

December Photo Project 2012


Blue sky, sunshine, and 70+ degrees...a great first day of December!

December Photo Project

a silent night

I have been going through my "drafts" posts tonight and have found this gem written on December 22, 2009...

"I need a silent night, a holy night, to hear an angel voice through the chaos and the noise. I need a midnight clear, a little peace right here, to end this crazy day with a silent night." from "A Silent Night" by Amy Grant

December 21st, 2009...when the "shortest" day of the year became the longest.

Scott had his heart surgery yesterday. We were at the hospital at 5:30 for pre-op...thinking surgery would start around 6:30 or 7:00 am. And, possibly it would have had there not been an emergency around 4 am which not only took the operating room, but also Dr. Chen, Scott's surgeon. Poor Scott, who hadn't eaten since before midnight, finally went back for pre-op a little after 12 noon and surgery started after 2pm. His surgery ended around 11:30 pm. It became rather comical during each update call during surgery when I would ask for an approximation of how much longer the answer was always 2-3 more hours.

During our first half of waiting together, Pastor Brian was there with us, keeping us company. I was able to take a short nap on Scott's shoulder while they chatted. Very nice for me, being the morning person that I am and all. Ha! We saw alot of people come in for surgery with their family and friends...and I saw them all go, as well, throughout the day. I had a nice lunch in the cafeteria after Scott went back to pre-op and Pastor Brian left. My father-in-law, Doug, came after lunch. I was able to take a nap while Doug walked Eric, Scott's brother, who came for a brief visit, out to his car.

Sitting can wear a person out like nothing else. Strange phenomenon if you ask me, but so true. My whole body hurt by the end of the night...and I took walks throughout the day, too. Craziness. Also, crazy was the fact that in spite of the instruction given verbally about 6 am by the person in charge (official title unknown) to set phones to vibrate, there were ringers going off all day long. Funny thing...I began to recognize the ringers to the owners.

Between the phones and the beepers the family members held, it's surprising that I could get in as much sleep as I did. I do remember jumping a couple of times, only to realize it was another phone or beeper going off near me. I can sleep pretty much anywhere, though, when I've been up since 4:30.

We moved upstairs to the ICU waiting room a bit before 11 pm. Scott was rolled past us headed for his room around 11:30. So happy to finally see an end to our day and we could all rest. Scott was kept asleep by medication all night and they would wake him up at 5:30 am, but I knew that so when I went in to see him I knew what to expect, which was nice. The OR nurse kept us informed all day pretty much every two hours just like she said she would. That was very reassuring. Didn't stay long...didn't need to really. He was fine and being well taken care of.

Friday, November 30, 2012

30 Days of Thanks: finale

Life.
Life in Christ.
Eternal life through Christ.

Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, 
where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. 
Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 
For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. 
When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
Colossians 3:1-3

3 in 30: finishing strong and looking ahead

My goals for the month of November have been to...

Go through boys' closet: declutter, separate into keep/donate/sell piles, make a list of clothing to purchase to get through the winter months.
Completed!  
Begin sorting through "hot spots": A move is in our future. I would like to get a good start on decluttering before crunch time.
Found some time to sort through the miscellaneous items being housed in our desk.  It's load has lessened.  May get to some other hot spot areas this afternoon...and will carry this goal over to December. 
Encourage intentionally: As I am encouraged by others, I hope to extend that same encouragement to others.
I have found that in encouraging others, I reminded myself of many times God strengthened me through encouragement in my life.  It's been a blessing to intentionally look for ways to encourage others...but, I know there are so many opportunities I missed, too.  It's a lifestyle change I hope to continue.

Looking ahead to December...
Begin sorting through "hot spots": A move is in our future. I would like to get a good start on decluttering before crunch time.
Keep Christmas simple and meaningful.
Help our family focus on His presence not the presents.

May your days be merry and bright!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

30 DoT: {day 29} something in your home

The things that I am thankful for in my home are numerous.
Here is the short list...
the people who reside there with me ♥
central heating/air system
running hot/cold water
dishwasher
washer & dryer
stove/oven
shared love & laughter
pictures/photo albums
family heirloom quilts
windows that allow the sunshine in

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

just a couple more days...

...until the December Photo Project begins again!
I so loved the challenge and joy of taking at least one photo each day of December last year that I have signed up for this year, too.  Hopefully, this will jumpstart me into taking more photos in 2013 than I have in 2012.

December Photo Project 2012

30 DoT: {day 28} a gift

Outside of the gift of salvation from my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, I am most thankful for the gift of friendship extended to me by people who know me and still love me anyway.
Truly I do not believe their could be a better gift to receive than that of friendship...life is better with friends to share it with.
Thank you anyone who calls me friend!  I cherish you and your friendship.

30 DoT: {day 27} a song

I am thankful for any song that is all about giving praise to the One who is worthy of it in all circumstances of life.
I am thankful for silly and fun songs that can be sung with my boys.
I am thankful for songs that begin right after Thanksgiving and continue until Christmas Day!  Bring on the Christmas carols...Rudolph...Jingle Bells...Holly Jolly Christmas...Hippopotamusases...and all the others!
It, indeed, is the most wonderful time of the year!

Monday, November 26, 2012

30 DoT: {day 26} a charity

The charity that first comes to mind is Locks of Love.  I love the concept...I love that it costs nothing to grow your hair...I enjoy the joy I have seen in girls who are growing their hair out long enough to one day donate to this charity.  
Maybe one day I will do it myself...maybe. :)

Sunday, November 25, 2012

30 DoT: {day 25} a luxury

My smartphone and my laptop come in at a tie for top luxury items...things I could live without, most certainly, but things I would miss having around if they were no longer at my fingertips.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

let the countdown begin...

Just purchased my ticket to Anchorage, AK for June 2013!
No matter how many times I click "confirm", the excitement remains the same.
God has done great things, is doing great things, and will do great things again in the hearts of His children and those who need to hear the Gospel in Alaska.
God is good!

30 DoT: {day 24} a photograph

Here are a few of my favorites...but I am thankful for every moment, place, and expression I have ever captured in a photograph!  








Friday, November 23, 2012

30 DoT: {days 22 & 23} a book & wisdom

I am most thankful for the Bible!  

Favorite words of wisdom...
"Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened." Dr.Suess

30 DoT: {days 20 & 21} a keepsake & a disappointment

A favorite keepsake of my own is my "got moose?" T-shirt from my first trip to Alaska in 2008.

A disappointment that turned into a blessing for me was when I gave up my window seat this past summer in exchange for an aisle one on my flight into Anchorage. My post, "a willing sacrifice", tells of this disappointing moment turned blessing.

Monday, November 19, 2012

30 DoT: {day 19} health

A few weeks ago I was stricken with an awful virus...while my body was weakened I picked up a bacterial infection which turned into a sinus infection and bronchitis.  It was a week of simple horribleness.  I laughed as I had prayed just a week prior that God would help me curb my appetite so that I would not want to snack as often or eat as much.  He answered that prayer of mine for my appetite was surely gone for awhile. Not quite what I had in mind, but....it's not my choice on how He chooses to answer.  :)  It has worked, however, and the snacking urge has not returned still to this day.  Praise God!
Along with the answered prayer, I was reminded of how good healthy feels.  It reminded me to give thanks for each day that we go without major or even minor illnesses!  All three remaining family members were able to enjoy the benefits of being sick after me.  Each one, thankfully, was less ill as it was passed on.  That is opposite of how it usually goes.  As the wife and mother of those getting ill and still recovering myself, I was extremely thankful for that!
Our overall health as a family is good....nothing less than a miracle!  This is a reason to give thanks this year and all years God blesses us in this way!
God is good...no matter what!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

30 DoT: {day 18} Scripture/Saying/Quote

Scripture...
"The Spirit of the Lord God is on Me,
because the Lord has anointed Me
to bring good news to the poor.
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives
and freedom to the prisoners;
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor,
and the day of our God’s vengeance;
to comfort all who mourn,
to provide for those who mourn in Zion;
to give them a crown of beauty instead of ashes,
festive oil instead of mourning,
and splendid clothes instead of despair.
And they will be called righteous trees,
planted by the Lord
to glorify Him."
Isaiah 61:1-3

Saying...
If you stand for nothing, you'll fall for anything.

Quote...
"Wherever you go, go with all your heart." ~Confucius


Saturday, November 17, 2012

3 in 30: Progress!

Go through boys' closet: declutter, separate into keep/donate/sell piles, make a list of clothing to purchase to get through the winter months.
Completed!  
Begin sorting through "hot spots": A move is in our future. I would like to get a good start on decluttering before crunch time.
Slow going, but going, nonetheless!  Began by going through Christmas decorations and the closet in which they are stored along with other not used everyday items.  
Encourage intentionally: As I am encouraged by others, I hope to extend that same encouragement to others.
I am enjoying this one!  Notes, emails, fb messages, blog comments, phone calls, face to face conversations...the opportunities to do this are endless!

30 DoT: {day 17} a store

As a wife and mother, I am thankful for any store that offers great deals, everyday low prices, and one-stop-shopping opportunities because I would rather not spend all my time and money running around town for things.

30 DoT: {day 16} an experience

I am thankful for experiencing...
Salvation.
God moments.
Marriage.
Motherhood.
Friendship.
Family gatherings.
Wow '08 Alaska...and '09, '10, '11, '12, and...  :)
Walks on the beach.
Deep sea fishing.
Serving others.
Hard times that stretch and grow my faith.
Forgiveness.
Hot summer days.
Jumping in leaf piles.
Sledding.
Spring flowers.
Road trips.
South Africa.
Holding hands.
Sunsets.
Life.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

30 DoT: {day 15} a recipe

I am so thankful for Mom and Grandma who took the time to teach me the way around a kitchen!  They wrote down several of our family favorite recipes and I still use them today...and hope to for years to come.  They also taught me how to make do with what I have and make something good out of it.
Grandma always made the best pies when I was growing up.  No one does it like Grandma...but I hope I am close to getting as good as she was!  (Although Grandma is still with us, she doesn't make pie anymore.)
My favorite recipe that I have is for grape pie.  We had two different recipes growing up, but the one Grandma wrote down for me is the one I always use.
It reminds me of several things to be thankful for when I make it...
Grandma who wrote the recipe down for me when I went away to college.
Mom who still gathers grapes for me when they are ripe and freezes them for me.
My aunt, Lavone, who sprays and takes care of the grape vines so they produce wonderful, round purple balls of greatness for the pie!
Family and friends who request the pie to be made...I have a habit of holding onto the grapes in the freezer for a "special" occasion.  They remind me that any day is special enough for grape pie.  It really is that good!

Grandma's Grape Pie
1 1/2 lbs. Concord grapes
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1 Tblsp. lemon juice
1 1/2 Tblsp. melted butter
Topping:
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup butter

Skin grapes and set skins aside.  Bring pulp to a boil; reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes.  Press through a sieve to remove seeds.  Add skins.  In a mixing bowl, combine sugar, flour and salt.  Add lemon juice, melted butter, and pulp mixture.  Stir well and pour into one deep dish 9 inch pie crust.
Topping:  Sift together flour and sugar.  Cut in butter until crumbly.  Sprinkle over pie mixture.  Bake at 400°  about 40 minutes or until set in the middle.

Date pudding, pumpkin pie squares, homemade noodles, Thanksgiving dressing, raisin cookies, raisin pie, date cookies, or about 50 other recipes could also take the #1 spot of my favorite recipes...just sayin'...  :)

the water receded



But God remembered Noah and all the wild animals and the livestock that were with him in the ark, and he sent a wind over the earth, and the waters receded. Now the springs of the deep and the floodgates of the heavens had been closed, and the rain had stopped falling from the sky. The water receded steadily from the earth. At the end of the hundred and fifty days the water had gone down, and on the seventeenth day of the seventh month the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat. The waters continued to recede until the tenth month, and on the first day of the tenth month the tops of the mountains became visible.
Genesis 8:1-5
There are times in life when the water rises...and continues to rise...in our circumstances called life.
Like rain, there are certain things that are not in our control.  Not at all.
Blindsided.
Legs out from underneath us.
Spiraling out of control.
Bad.
I was reminded of this passage and my heart is encouraged.
Which part of this verse is my favorite?  There is a debate going on.
But God...
God remembered Noah (or insert your name here)...
or
The water receded.
God's got this.
He will remember His own.
The flood waters will recede.
Until then, I am holding on tight to my God and His promises.


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

30 DoT: {day 14} something new

Because of the LORD’s faithful love
we do not perish,
for His mercies never end.
 They are new every morning;
great is Your faithfulness!

Lamentations 3:22-23

30 DoT: {day 13} something old

Apparently I'm the "something old"...I downloaded the photo and totally forgot to come back and compose the post to go along with it yesterday...

There are a number of things that I am thankful for that fall into the category of "something old".
The first three things that came to mind were...
The Bible...God's Word, although written in ages past, is still alive and relevant today.  I do not know where I would be without it, honestly.
The Earth...although I may not agree with the age some scientists say, I know it has been around a long time.  All the adventures of others before me has opened the world up to me to explore on my own and find treasure and make memories for years to come.
My Grandparents...at 90 and 91 years of age, respectively, my Grandma and Grandpa are still two of my favorite people ever.  I have been blessed to have them in my life for so long!

Monday, November 12, 2012

boys


30 DoT: {day 12} a gadget

I am amazed at all the gadgets available to us today.  When I think back to my first computer experience in high school and then the excitement of an email account in college, I laugh at the humor of it all.  I did not have a cell phone until a couple of years after college.  Portable music devices were boomboxes that people carried around on their shoulders.
Oh, how the times have changed for the better!
My boys do not remember a day of their lives without computer or cell phone access.  Alex knew how to turn on the computer and use a mouse to open his counting and colors games by the age of two.  Tim, the same.  They both know how to work my smartphone better than I do...and are counting down the years until they may get one.  Scott even got in on the smartphone fad and began using my first one that I gave up once the camera quit working after I dropped it in some water.  (oops!)  Alex has a ipod touch on his wishlist for Christmas...Tim already has songs picked out for when he gets one, too.  
I do love the technological gadgets, but my favorite gadget is my camera.  This year has not been a great year of photo taking for me, but I do carry it most places I go.  I forgot it camping late this summer and I felt like I had left part of me at home.
It is not a grand gadget, of sorts...a gal has to dream about something...
It's just a camera that captures moments in time for enjoyment in future days.  Digitalization of cameras has so many pros, I can only think of one con.  There was a hint of excitement when one would walk up to the photo counter to see how the photos turned out.  Holding those photos (that captured what you hoped they did) in your hand was like holding a treasure.
That being said, I love the fact that you can evaluate photos immediately now to get what you desire before having to gather the fam back together again for another photo shoot...or accept the fact that your memory from a trip somewhere is captured with a blurry scene or someone's hair sticking up.
I am thankful for God giving me a love of taking photos...I want to have memories to pass on and stories to tell my grandchildren one day.  I am also extremely thankful for a very patient family and group of friends that do not mind me always seemingly lagging behind when going somewhere because I have stopped again to take a photo of a flower or an overlook view.  They also know at one point or another I'll gather them in just to hear them say, "Cheese!"
It is worth it, though, in the end.  We love going back and looking over our photos from trips and special occasions time and time again.


Sunday, November 11, 2012

30 DoT: {days 10 & 11} a memory & a tradition

My favorite memory...how can I possibly choose just one?
My favorite memory is the one that makes me smile, laugh, and perhaps cry (from laughing so hard) while remembering when.
It could also be said to be the one that makes me stand in awe of the awesome God I serve.
Or, perhaps, it is the one that brings out the testimony of just how far God's forgiveness has been extended to me.

My favorite family tradition it enjoying Thanksgiving in Indiana.  As many of us as possible get together and catch up while enjoying wonderful food....turkey, dressing, noodles, mashed potatoes, Grandma salad, and (my all time favorite holiday dessert) date pudding.
Our immediate family favorite tradition is us being home together on Christmas morning.
My personal favorite tradition is celebrating my best friend's birthday...twice!  One year in college, she and I were working on the summer housekeeping crew.  It was June and she noticed on my calendar that her name was on one of the days and just started laughing...I had written down her name in June instead of July. So now, we joke about what she's doing for her birthdays each year.  I try to get in a phone call to her, too, when it's possible.  She always asks where I'm spending her birthdays...and the answer is, for at least one of them anyway, Alaska.


Friday, November 9, 2012

30 DoT: {days 8 & 9} a restaurant & a website

The restaurant that comes to mind is Stoll's Lakeview Restaurant in my hometown. Owned and operated by Christians, it was a great first job! They gave me my first job in college and worked around my schedule for me. Made some good friends while working there. Aside from gas money, it gave me an eye opening experience on how to handle serving others...and the fact that some people appreciate the littlest of things, while others are not pleased with anything. You take them both and make the most out of what you are handed.
The website I am most thankful for is my own. God has given me courage to begin blogging...not for money or followers, but for His glory alone. A place to express myself in order for God to use as He delights. I had signed up months before I ever typed a word for a post. I could not come up with a title. Apparently when the time was right it just all fell into place. Some 400+ posts later, I still am enjoying the blogosphere. I have blogs I visit, but will not begin naming them because I enjoy so many for different reasons, I do not want to leave anyone out.
[Typed on phone while away...forgive any autocorrecting errors that it might have.]

3 in 30: beginnings

My three goals for the week were on my mind everyday.  Had it not been for a crazy busy schedule that had us running in and out all day, every day, this week, I might have been able to get to more of my goals than I did.  It's not because I didn't want to get at my tasks, it was because I was never at home long enough to get at them after all the normal everyday things like meals, dishes, and laundry were attacked.
Go through boys' closet: declutter, separate into keep/donate/sell piles, make a list of clothing to purchase to get through the winter months.
Well, we took a moment inbetween appointments on Tuesday to go and get the boys some pants that they desperately needed for this fall/winter.  Poor guys grow so fast that they seem to always be in high waters.  Alex picked out a red pair of pants from Old Navy...and he looks good in them.  I never would have imagined...
Next week we will work to make room for their new clothes in their closet.
Begin sorting through "hot spots": A move is in our future. I would like to get a good start on decluttering before crunch time.
I hope knowing where I want to begin this goal is an actual beginning. :)  No time this week...maybe next!
Encourage intentionally: As I am encouraged by others, I hope to extend that same encouragement to others.
This one was easier for me to accomplish.  Wrote some notes of encouragement to others and made sure to tell my boys everyday, more than once, something to encourage them.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

30 DoT: {day 7} a scent

I first must give thanks for the fact that I have an amazing Creator who gave me a nose with which I can enjoy the aromas of my favorite things in life, such as...
Apple pie baking in the oven.
A perfectly pink rose.
Fresh sheets just in off the clothesline.
Pot roast and veggies in the crockpot for Sunday lunch.
Midnight Pomegranate lotion which takes me right back to Alaska every. single. time.
Fresh cut hay.
Apple cider and popcorn in the fall.
Brownies cooling on the counter.
Salty sea breezes on a warm summer's day.

Thank you, Lord, for all the small things in life that make it so wonderful to be alive!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

30 DoT: {day 6} an article of clothing

My tried and true, way too big, rough around the edges, giver of warmth, but most comfortable thing I own...Taylor University sweatshirt.
I remember purchasing it in our little bookstore on campus.  I should not have splurged on it, but I did.  My guess is that it has paid for itself by now with all of the wearings I have gotten out of it.
Maybe why this sweatshirt holds a special place in my heart is because it represents the most amazing college years a person could have in life.  There is little left to represent those years for me and numerous others due to circumstances out of our control, but that's a long story for another day.
Only God in His infinite wisdom could have put this gal in just the right place at the right time in her life in order to learn, grow, experience, and enjoy all that my years at TUFW had in store for me.
Thank God for providing for me in the way of tuition, a job, friends, and the best of the best in Bible professors!

Monday, November 5, 2012

30 DoT: {day 5} a place

Now I know most everyone who knows me would guess that a place that I am most thankful for is Alaska.  With good reason, too.  I do thank God for opening my heart up to His work being done in such a marvelously, wonderfully, amazingly beautiful, yet unchurched state.

Honestly, I am thankful for a place...any place...God calls me to be at work doing His work.

My own backyard...a place to play, explore, rest, enjoy God's handiwork displayed for me in nature, and raise my boys.
My church...a place I worship, pray, hear God's Word taught faithfully, fellowship with believers, and serve others.
Bible Memory Camp...a place I learn the truth about God by reading and memorizing His Word, see living examples on how to live out my salvation, worship, have a blast, all the while making disciples.
These United States of America...a land full of beauty that tells of a magnificent Creator...all of them with their own history and stories just waiting to be heard and explored.
Far off lands...places I have been...and places I dream of being one day.
Heaven...the place I long to be the most to enjoy the presence of my Lord and Savior for evermore!

In my heart I call anywhere I lay my head down at night "home".  I do not know how that is, but it I do consider it a gift.  I love to travel around and come home again.  I am so thankful and feel extremely blessed that God has granted me the opportunity to see so many places...and with each place meet wonderful people, even if only for a moment.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

30 DoT: {day 4} favorite snack


Being thankful for a snack seems kind of funny.  It works out, however, that with every snack that I have considered giving the title of "favorite" to I also hold fond memories with special people, for which, I am indeed very thankful to have in my life!
For example, take "Puppy Chow".  It could easily qualify as my favorite snack these days.  I do not make it very often and never just for myself because I cannot quit snacking on it.  Having it in the freezer does not help, either, because it is even better when frozen.  One of my best friends in youth group, back in the day, introduced me to Puppy Chow.  With every batch of it that I make, she comes to mind...and I still love her bunches to this day.
Another in the race for favorite snack is chips and dip.  Before you correct my grammar, I do not think of chips and dip as plural, but as one food item, therefore, "is" is correct. :)  I do not buy said snack often at all for the same reason as with Puppy Chow.  If it is around, I consume way too much, too often.  This snack brings warm fuzzy memories of times spent with my best friend from college, who is still my best friend today.  It is funny, but when we are about to get together we both have a higher craving for chips and dip.
The healthiest of my favorite snack foods is radishes.  I simply love radishes!  The memories of Grandma and Grandpa planting seeds, weeding/thinning out the radish row, picking the radishes, and then finally cleaning and tasting the crop...that all just adds to the wonderfulness of the taste.  Sometimes they would plant the early lettuce and radishes inside old tractor tires filled with dirt.  That was such a great idea for raised beds and recycling all in one!
So, even if it seems odd to be thankful for snack foods, I am thankful for the people who mean so much to me that are associated with them!  Food and family/friends...they go hand in hand. :)
   

Saturday, November 3, 2012

30 DoT: {day 3} a cozy place

I am very thankful for our home...but if I had to choose the cozy spot I am most thankful for it is in front of our living room fireplace.  Nothing soothes my soul more than having a roaring fire going to combat the cold temperatures.  Add pink fuzzy slippers and a mug of hot cocoa and you have perfection!
The crackling wood, the dancing yellow flames, the glowing embers as it dies down...it's therapy for me and I love it!
So thankful that back a few years ago we found a home with a large fireplace for me to sit in front of and dream of summer!

3 in 30: getting with the program

It has been more than a few months since I have last linked up with 3 in 30...no specific reason why, just life, I'd say.  We'll see how it goes again now.  There are a few things that have been on my mind to begin accomplishing in the next few weeks, so some wonderful, encouraging accountability just might be the ticket to getting my to-do list a little shorter.
November goals...
Go through boys' closet:  declutter, separate into keep/donate/sell piles, make a list of clothing to purchase to get through the winter months
Begin sorting through "hot spots":  A move is in our future.  I would like to get a good start on decluttering before crunch time.
Encourage intentionally:  As I am encouraged by others, I hope to extend that same encouragement to others.

Friday, November 2, 2012

30 DoT: {day 2} an animal

Moose...
This may sound crazy, but the first animal that came to mind that I am most thankful for this year is a moose. Not just any moose, but the first one that my NBC family saw while in Alaska.  
Trust me when I say that there is nothing sweeter than seeing a moose in the "wild" (even if it is in the city limits) for the very first time.
I have been there myself back in 2008...the first moose sighting is simply something I will never forget.  
Each time one is sighted it is just as exciting for me.
Since 2008, I have had the joy of leading other teams on their moose hunts.
God has granted favor and always provided at least one, and usually more, moose for my teams to see and squeal with delight over.
This summer, I caught our second moose sighting on video.  It still makes me laugh out loud.  Enjoy!



  

Thursday, November 1, 2012

30 Days of Thanks: {day 1} a person

Jesus, the Son of God, my Savior!
This is how we know that we remain in Him and He in us: He has given assurance to us from His Spirit. And we have seen and we testify that the Father has sent His Son as the world’s Savior. Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God-God remains in him and he in God. And we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and the one who remains in love remains in God, and God remains in him.
In this, love is perfected with us so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment, for we are as He is in this world. There is no fear in love; instead, perfect love drives out fear, because fear involves punishment. So the one who fears has not reached perfection in love. We love because He first loved us.  1 John 4:13-19

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Memory Blankets: full circle

I'm an excited mom.  The boys both put their memory blankets on their beds tonight.  I have been putting off making these blankets for several months.  Never did I ever think that I would be able to begin and end the making of two memory blankets in one month's time!  Alex's was completed about a week ago.  Tim's last few blanket stitches were added yesterday afternoon.
When they both crawled under their blankets tonight and began talking about their shirts and what they remember about them and when they wore them, it was more fulfilling than I would have ever imagined.


The blankets, stitched little squares of memories, made more memories for us tonight.
They are happy.
I am happy.
A beautiful ending to childhood t-shirts...a beautiful beginning to snuggle time.

I'm really thankful that they sleep soundly...I had to turn on their big light to get the photos. :)

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Zesto's, soccer, and more...

last week was the first trip to Zesto's for the boys
a boy and his ice cream

happy happy happy

after Zesto's we went to the farmer's market for pumpkins...lots o' puree for pies and breads  :)

Alex and his team, the Lynx on game day

Tim in action for our team, the Kickers

card Tim made for me the day I was feeling like death warmed over



double digits

Alex turned the big 1-0 on the 18th.  I'm finally getting around to finding a minute or two to upload photos from his birthday party with his friends at the bowling alley.  We had fun before bowling at the farm...they played in the woods and took a ride in the pasture in the bed of our truck.  Afterwards, we went to our house to open presents and have a grand time on scooters, the flying turtle, bikes, trampoline, zipline, and just watching boys being boys.
This year he celebrated a bit like his mama likes to...he had a birthday season.  It began on the 17th with lunch and golf with Nana and Pawpaw and has continued until just yesterday when Grandpa took him shopping and out for some ice cream....and a whole lot of partying inbetween!
He is my son.  And I love him dearly.