Tuesday, December 30, 2014


It is cold outside.
I believe the temperature is -11.
The wind chill brings that number down and I just cannot say it....
My toes and fingers are cold even in the house.

The backside of my house faces north.
As I pulled a spoon out of the silverware drawer (along the north-facing wall) even the SPOONS feel cold.

I'm not complaining.  Does it sound like I am?
Guess I just want to state a fact.

It is cold.

Which makes it the perfect time for me to dig through my photos for pictures from last summer.
The perky orange flowers at the top were from a pot on my deck last summer.
Don't they just make you smile?

The color makes me feel warmer....

Just off the deck we have a bird feeder on a gardening hook.
We feed the birds year round.

Last summer one of the feeds had sunflowers in them.
Lo and behold the birds dropped seeds and we had a sunflower bloom.
What an added bonus of color for us.
It was so fun to watch the birds peck the actual seeds from the flower.

Color brings warmth.

Today is the perfect day to dig through photos looking for color.
And warmth.

If it is cold where you live, I hope these pops of color bring you some warmth.
For those of you not living in The Frozen Tundra, enjoy the heat! is So Amazing.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Choose It

Those who live in love live in God, and God lives in them. 1 John 4:16

From the file entitled "It Ain't Gonna Happen," I...[suggest] a federal law that says everyone has to make God's love his or her home.  Let it herewith be stated and hereby declared:  No person may walk out into the world to begin the day until he or she has stood beneath the cross to receive God's love....

Don't you ache for the change we'd see?  Less honking and locking horns, more hugging and helping kids.  We'd pass fewer judgments and more compliments.  Forgiveness would skyrocket.  Wild idea?  I agree.  God's love can't be legislated, but it can be chosen....  For Christ's sake, and yours, choose it.


The above is from Max Lucado's daily devotional Grace For the Moment.

It is crazy that we can't force a free gift on those around us.  This free gift being unconditional, unending, life-changing love.  Such an easy thing yet such a hard gift to receive because we have to choose giving up ourselves.  

So what if we don't force this love on others but choose it for ourselves.  We can change the world.  Let God's love work and shine through you.  Choose it and live it.  Amazing big the change!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Triple C's

Driving into work this morning I had the radio on in the car.  A one-minute "How to Parent Your Teen" meditation played with the commentator saying that Change - Conflict - Chaos can be a part of raising a teenager.  The facts in raising a teenager remain that they are changing and oftentimes that brings conflict with themselves and then with those around them.   The commentator encouraged us to work at resolving the conflicts so they didn't lead to chaos.

So many of you, my dear friends, have confided in me your change - conflict - chaos situations.  What I am calling The Triple C's are in my life as well.  None of us is immune.

However, with our risen Savior, Jesus Christ, do we not have hope?  Do we not have peace available?  How about the truth that He will never leave us nor forsake us?  He is a High Tower that we can run to.  He is the living water, the very air we breath.

Friends, don't let the Triple C's become a Fourth C:  consumption.  Don't let your problems consume you.

Change is going to happen.  In fact everything seems to be changing faster and faster.  As change brings conflict, work hard and diligently to resolve the issues.  Don't let your situation get to chaos.

My solution for the Triple C's is to change up what it stands for.  How about this:

Choose Christ Completely

With Christ, change, conflict and chaos can be controlled (am I overdoing the c-words in this paragraph)!!!

Seriously, may the Triple C's in your life bring hope, comfort, and joy as you Choose Christ Completely.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Parsley Chicken with Lime Rice

This summer I have had almost every type of fast food because of baseball games every single night. Don't get me wrong, I am not proud of this.

When I finally had a night at home it was with great joy that I made a homemade meal.  We almost licked our plates the food was so good.  I marinated chicken in a parsley concoction then grilled it.  Along with this was lime rice and a cucumber/tomato salad.  If you are looking for a delicious meal, give this recipe a try.

Parsley Chicken
3 pounds trimmed boneless skinless chicken breasts
1/2 cup fresh flat leaf parsley, minced
1 large lemon, washed thoroughly
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
2 garlic cloves minced and pressed
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
1/2 tsp. ground pepper

Halve lemons and juice well.  Combine all ingredients, except chicken, in a bowl.  Add chicken and coat evenly.  Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes to an hour.  Honestly, I mix mine together before going to work so it marinates at least six to eight hours.  

Preheat grill.  I grill my chicken off direct heat (on the shelf) 10 minutes on each side or until done.  Remove from the grill and let set about 10 minutes before serving.

Lime Rice
1 tsp. vegetable oil or butter
2 tsp. fresh cilantro
2/3 cup white basmati rice
1 cup water
1/2 tsp. salt
1 lime

In a 2-quart heavy saucepan, heat oil or butter over low heat, stirring until melted.  Add rice and lime juice, stir 1 minute.

Add water and salt, bring to a full rolling boil.  At boiling, cover, turn down to simmer over low heat until rice is tender and the water is absorbed, about 25 minutes.  Add in cilantro and fluff with a fork.

I wish you could have been here to enjoy this amazing meal with us!  Let me know if you make this and how you like it.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Wisdom Hope Thankful - Update on My Dad

Wisdom Hope Thankful.

My Dad and My Mom live in Little City USA.  Their options of medical care are at least a one-hour drive from their home.  The Next Big City where My Dad received his chemo couldn't perform the liver biopsy that was determined to be next steps so My Parents drove two hours to The Bigger City.

The doctor/surgeon that met with us was so kind, compassionate, and explained things very clearly. He called My Dad's cancer very interesting.  We could tell he had spent time reading and looking at the radiology films.  How thankful we were for God hand picking this man to review Dad's records and meet with us.  

And how thankful we were the suggested liver biopsy was scheduled within that same week!

The pathology report from the liver biopsy did show metastasis of colon cancer to the liver.  

And a strong possibility of spread to the bone.

The doctor had prepared us for this possibility and had also used the words:  slow-growing and make long-term plans.

Hope is a very powerful word.

We heard hope in that doctor's words.

Merriam Webster defines wisdom as:  


 noun \ˈwiz-dəm\
: knowledge that is gained by having many experiences in life

The next steps were to return to The Next Big City to see the oncologist in charge of My Dad's care.  I wanted to be at that appointment so headed north for The Long Drive.  As I drove, two dear friends telephoned me separately to chat and both prayed with me.  Both of them prayed for the doctor to have wisdom and that My Parents and I would have wisdom during the appointment.

James 1:5
If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.

God totally answered the prayers of my friends (and the host of others that were praying for us). Doctor P started explaining the possible next steps, another round of chemo, but then he said:

I think a another opinion is warranted here

He went on to say:  If you were my dad I would want another opinion. This is a very interesting case.


I have worked in the medical field for 35 years and there are just a handful of doctors that I have met that would admit they would like a patient to get another opinion.  How thankful we are for the humility and compassion of this man!

With thankful, hopeful hearts, we await the appointment that will be scheduled for My Dad in the medical facility in My City.  We continue to ask God for wisdom as we venture forth.  

Friends, God keeps His promises. He promised that if any of you lacks wisdom, ask Him for it. Irregardless of who you are and your relationship with Him.  He will give it to you.

Daily I am So Amazed at the God of this Universe and His loving care for us.  

Saturday, July 12, 2014

14 Days 14 Different Ball Fields

14 days of baseball
Two different teams
14 different baseball fields
Metal bleachers
Exciting games
Sliding into base
Late nights
Great hits
Disappointing losses
More baseball in the upcoming days
Kidlet Three playing shortstop
Kidlet Three playing third base
Kidlet Three pitching
His mother cutting off his head while taking pictures

No time to blog
Take me out to the ball game...
Amazing time with our youngest Kidlet

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

My Dad and Baby N

It is my honor to introduce you to My Dad.  In this picture, from a year ago, he is holding his Great Grandbaby C.  And at that point he was just a couple of months into chemotherapy for colon cancer. In this post, No Cancer, I wrote about his great check up in January.

This week we were told there are some hot spots showing up on a recent PET scan.  As we know from the January PET scan, hot spots don't always mean cancer but there are areas that need to be checked out.

Tomorrow morning My Dad is having a liver biopsy. There is a new hot spot showing up on his liver. Would you join us in praying for a benign pathology report, please. A preliminary report will be known tomorrow and the final pathology report within the week.  God bless you for joining us in this battle.

And now I would like to introduce you to Grand Baby N.  He is two weeks old today and is such a good baby.  His big sister, Baby C, loves to give her brother kisses.  Tuesday morning Baby N snuggled into me and took his nap.  Staring into this perfect face, all the cares of the world seem to melt away.  How I pray that he will be a Mighty Man of God.

I'm so thankful for My Dad and for the safe delivery of Baby N.  

God is good and very amazing.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Fish - Fish - Fish

One first, two fish, red fish, blue fish
Dr. Seuss says fish, fish, fish!
 And fish we did
 Casting for crappies (phonetically say crop peas)
we had a good haul
and then the northerns started hitting
 Oh how exciting to have this big fish take your pole
and bend it until it looks like it will break
 One fish then two fish...
 then three fish and more!
My dad and brother were busy taking
the fish off the hook for me.
Yup, I haven't mastered touching the fish
after all these years.
For this post my dad and my brother get the 
Amazing Award for taking care of the

Monday, June 16, 2014


Recently we were in The Northern Woods.
While fishing, we had a visitor.
She swam around us as if we weren't even there.
I wish you could see the drops of water on her head!
And then plop, under the water she went, probably
in search of her supper.
And when she resurfaced, away she went.
What a treat it was to enjoy this beautiful
creation of our Amazing God.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Gray Hair

Confession time:  I color my hair.

The gray hair intermingled with my mousy hair color just isn't pretty.

The time I decided to be a red head was definitely a mistake.  

Those of you that saw me during that redhead-crazy-idea know what I am talking about.

I'm back to streaks of highlights for the summer and maybe some brown streaks for the winter.

Just enough to cover the gray.

In fact I was in the hairdresser's chair just this week for some Pick-Me-Up-Color to be added to my mop of hair.

Which is why this morning's daily devotional in my Grace For The Moment inspirational thoughts by Max Lucado caused me to chuckle and then to sit back and ponder.  This is the June 6 grace for the moment:

Even when you are old, I will be the same.  Even when your hair has turned gray, I will take care of you.  Isaiah 46:4

Growing old can be dangerous.  The trail is treacherous and the pitfalls are many.  One is wise to be prepared.  You know it's coming.... If growing old catches you by surprise, don't blame God.  He gave you plenty of warning.  He also gave you plenty of advice.  Your last chapters can be your best.... It could be that all of your life has prepared you for a grand exit.  God's oldest have always been among his choicest.
How thankful I am that my Loving Heavenly Father will be with me as I age.  He truly will never leave me or forsake me.  He promises to take care of me.  

Even if I cover up the gray.

Lord, thank you for Your promises of caring for us.  In Your Word you felt it was important to document that You will be there when our hair turns gray and that you will be the same and never change.  That is Amazing.  Your are Amazing.  Thank you, thank you, thank you.  And I remain, Your So Amazed.  


Wednesday, May 28, 2014

May 28

Psalm 145:3-6 Great is the Lord and most worthy of praise;his greatness no one can fathom. One generation commends your works to another;they tell of your mighty acts. They speak of the glorious splendor of your majesty—and I will meditate on your wonderful works. They tell of the power of your awesome works—and I will proclaim your great deeds. 

A dear friend recently gave me a book.  I had to chuckle as I unwrapped her gift as it was my very own copy of a book I'd purchased and given to other friends.   I had my own copy of Jesus Calling by Sarah Young.

The verse above was one of the verses for today along with the daily devotional.   May you be So Amazed by these truths:

Let me anoint you with My Presence.  I am King of kings and Lord of lords, dwelling in unapproachable Light.  When you draw near to Me, I respond by coming closer to you.  As My Presence envelops you, you may feel overwhelmed by My Power and Glory.  This is a form of worship:  sensing your smallness in comparison to My Greatness.

Man has tended to make himself the measure of all things.  But man's measure is too tiny to comprehend My majestic vastness.  That is why most people do not see Me at all, even though they live and move and have their being in Me.

Enjoy the radiant beauty of My Presence.  Declare My glorious Being to the world!

Monday, May 12, 2014

I Had the Best Day

I had the best day today.  It was my day off work and I decided to drive to the City-Of-3-Million people to spend the day.  There were three things on my agenda:

1)  Kidlet Two started a new job recently as Kitchen Lead with a catering company.  I wanted to see where he worked. When I showed up in the kitchen asking where he was all of the employees starting laughing that mommy is here to see you! Poor kid! My son was gracious and shrugged them off.  Right away he handed me a spoon to start tasting the delicious soup he was making.  How honored was I when he asked for my opinion on the salt content!  My arrival was just in time for his break so I enjoyed his potato soup, Bison sausage, couscous with beets, peach-glazed chicken, and a whole lot more.  It was a delightful visit and I am so proud of Kidlet Two and how he uses his cooking skills.

2)  Visiting with Kidlet One and Grand Baby C were also on my agenda.  We spent a fun afternoon together despite Grand Baby C having a sore throat and we could tell she just wasn't herself.  After a long nap she still wanted to snuggle with her Mama.  There were some smiles and giggles as we looked at books and played with some toys.  My Nana Love Tank was definitely filled up as I pulled out of the driveway for the 90-minute drive home!

3)  Visit this place:

Approximately 33 years ago I purchased a complete set of tableware from the potter, Peter Deneen.  Dinner, salad and dessert plates, bowls, mugs, serving bowls and other miscellaneous pieces in the brown and blue glaze shown here filled my cupboards.

My bridal registry was in the store that sold this pottery in My City.  For years our family used these -each-piece-handmade dishes and they held up beautifully.  Until piece by piece they broke or chipped until I didn't have enough pieces for a complete setting.  I still use the serving bowls but the plates and bowls were tucked away into boxes until recently.  I Googled the potter and found him in The Big City.  His family was very interested in getting back the pieces I no longer was using.

The company now makes mugs with name plates on them.  Each mug is handmade.  During my tour of the facility, I watched the clay being mixed, the potters with their spinning wheels making mugs, workers applying the handles, the kilns, the glazing, and the packing room.  It was so impressive.  Three mugs were given to me as a gift and I can't wait to have my morning coffee in one of them tomorrow!

For some reason I got choked up when I met the man who made each and every piece of my dishes.  I guess the reality of his talent and the memories of so many family meals being enjoyed with those dishes caught up with me.  As the tears streamed down my face I thanked him for using his gifts and making such beautiful creations.  The poor man seemed a little uncomfortable with me sniffling there!!  Later as I was touring, he caught up with me and handed me this personal piece that he had made.  As I carried it along on the tour, all of the employees commented on it and told me how special this piece was.  Several employees seemed surprise that I was given this piece. 

The last mug that was given to me has the company name plate on it.  If you own a company that would use mugs, I would encourage you to contact Deneen Pottery to have them design their one-of-a-kind mugs.

Spending time with two of my Kidlets and seeing a potter in action made it just an amazing day!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A Masterpiece

I am so excited and, so amazed, that a big project has been completed.

It involves family.
My house is a split-level and within the past year almost
all of the upstairs and foyer have been painted.
I really wanted to change up the pictures from the
past and just couldn't decide what I wanted
on my freshly painted walls.
Until a Pinterest post caught my eye and I decided to recreate it.
Michael's Crafts had a sale on picture frames last
week so I went shopping and
spent an afternoon reframing family photos.
Here they are all lined up on the kitchen counter.

With the tall ceiling in the foyer, the wall
going up the stairs was perfect for all of
the pictures I wanted to show.
Using black construction paper, I measured
each frame and taped paper on the wall to
simulate each picture.
 I left the paper up for a few days to visualize if
I really liked this plan.  I did move a few
sheets of paper around to play with placement.
The day of the 'hanging' I assembled the framing
tools on the steps.
 I think The Husband got a little nervous when I came out
with the drill.
He stopped what he was working on and
offered to help me.
 For the next two hours he measured, drilled
and hung all of the pictures.
Yeah for The Husband!
 From the left we have pictures of
Kidlet One and Favorite-Son-Law's wedding
The Husband's parents
My parents
Our family picture
The Kidlets
Our India-supported daughter, Kavitha
Grand Baby C

 Tonight I removed the last placeholder paper.

  Family is one of God's Masterpieces
 My family is one of God's Masterpieces
 I'm so thankful for this project to the completed.
I'm really excited at how it turned out.
Plus, there is room to add pictures of Grand Baby N
that will join our family in July!
As God continues to amaze me every day, it was
important to me that He be honored on this
wall as well.  After all, He brought us all together.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

What Face Do You See

I arrived at my desk today and flipped the daily devotional to read the following.  I quote from Grace For The Moment, Inspirational Thoughts for Each Day of the Year by Max Lucado:

I stand a few feet from a mirror and see the face of a man who failed...who failed his Maker.  


I promised I wouldn't, but I did....  

If this were the first time, it would be different. 

 But it isn't.... 

Your eyes look in the mirror and see a sinner, a failure, a promise-breaker.  

But by faith you look in the mirror and see a robed prodigal bearing the ring of grace on your finger and the kiss of your Father on your face.

Be strong in the Lord and in His great power.  Ephesians 6:10
If you have asked Jesus to be your Lord and Savior, you are that robed prodigal bearing the ring of grace on your finger and the kiss of your Father on your face.  Don't give in to the lies that you are a sinner.

The Truth is so amazing!

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Paula Deen Beef Stew

The sun is shining and I can see some grass in the backyard.

The temperature is 15 degrees above zero.

Yesterday it was near 40 degrees.

It seems like a bad joke to have days fluctuating so much!

My feet are cold and I am just chilled so I decided to cook.  That always warms me up.

I grabbed package of frozen beef stew meat from the freezer and started to thaw it.

After a quick search on I decided to make Paula Deen's Old-Time Beef Stew.  It was absolutely delicious!  Here's how to make it.

2 pounds stew beef
2 T. vegetable oil
2 cups water (I used 3 and could have used one more)
1 T. Worcestershire sauce
1 clove garlic, peeled
1 or 2 bay leaves
1 medium onion, sliced
1 t. salt
1 t. sugar
1/2 t. pepper
1/2 t. paprika
Dash ground allspice or ground cloves
Better Than Bouillon (this is my addition to the recipe)
5 small potatoes (another addition I made to the recipe)

I always start cooking by filling my sink with hot, soapy water.  Especially with raw meat, I want to be able to wash my hands quickly and easily.
Assemble the ingredients you'll be using.
My stew meat was slightly frozen.  I've learned from experience that partially frozen meat going into hot oil can be dangerous.  Make sure your meat is thawed!
In a large stock pot, heat 2 T. vegetable oil.  When heated, add the meat to brown it.  I stir it all the time to keep from sticking too much to the pan.  You just want to see brown on all the pieces as you aren't cooking it all the way through.

Add the water, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, bay leaves, onion, salt, sugar, pepper, paprika and allspice. Cover and simmer 1 1/2 hours.
Remove the bay leaves and garlic clove.

Add chopped carrots, celery and I also added potatoes.
My secret ingredient is the Better than Bouillon beef flavoring.  About 1 t. is enough.  Add it now.
Cover the pot again and cook 30 to 40 minutes longer.  You can add cornstarch to some of the hot liquid (in a separate bowl) and re-add to the stew if you like it thick.  With the addition of the potatoes, my stew was plenty thick with veggies.

It was delicious and the perfect meal for a chilly March day!