Friday, June 30, 2006

Friday Feast

Today I'm participating in "Friday Feast" - in honor of 100 feasts. To participate, check it out at

Appetizer - On average, approximately how many times per day do you yawn? 10-15

Soup - What was your most memorable school field trip? Probably my senior trip to Florida. We had earned so much money that year it wasn't funny. I remember we decided to buy new typewriters for the school with some of the extra. The last day, the principal took us to a shopping mall and handed us each $20 to spend. Some guys obviously had a hard time shopping. Instead they raided one of the girls suitcases and strung her unmentionables across the parking lot!

Salad - Fill in the blank: I was extremely busy this week.

Main Course - Which color do you think of when you hear the word "soothing"? Buttercup yellow. Light purples may be more soothing but I'm not a purple person.

Dessert - What is something that, if you had to, you could save up the money to buy within one month? New livingroom furniture or carpet.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Thirteen Things

Okay, I'm totally cheating here. I've been pondering what thirteen things I might post about should I ever choose to participate in the Thursday Thirteen meme. But I haven't totally figured TT out yet - you know, the code, etc. Anyways, this was on the back burner today when I stumbled across a wonderfully convicting article on Not coincidentally, it contains exactly - you guessed it! Thirteen points! So I encourage you to check this out when you get a minute.

Whether we're pondering a bad choice made at the mall yesterday, a poor choice of words last week or a more life-altering decision years ago, it seems natural to hang onto the past and allow it to paralyze us and blind us from God's promises. I thought this article was too good not to share.


I'm on a Greek food kick right now. I remember my gram getting on different kicks and making the same dish over and over again until she mastered it. Well it's true - the apple doesn't fall far from the tree. I made this middle Eastern salad for work today and thought I'd share it with my blogging pals.

I used Hodgson Mill Bulgur Wheat w/Soy - got it Shop & Save in the hot cereal section. But here's the jist of the recipe (which I altered a bit from the box anyways)

1-1/2 cups bulgur wheat
1-1/2 cups boiling water (I'd use more like 2 - should be covered)
Cover wheat with water and let sit at least 2 hours or overnight - i just put it in the fridge.

1 bunch parsley (I ended up using close to 2 of the curly type)
1 green pepper
1 cuke (I seeded it)
3 tomatoes, seeded (I used 6 Romas)
Onions - 1/2 cup or so, red is nice if you have it, or green onions

Chop all vegetables very fine. Drain any excess water from wheat and mix in vegetables. Mix together 1/2 cup oil (I used olive), 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice and 1 tsp salt (I used 2 of kosher salt). Pour dressing over salad and let chill for 2 hours.

It's easy to make but you have to allow time for the soaking and chilling! It's wonderful with homemade hummus! And in case you're wondering, the above picture is a record-breaking dish of tabouleh at some Greek food festival!

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Begin With The End In Mind

For the last year and a half, I've been working 4-10's, that is four ten hour days, with a day off each week. Each month I had a different day of the week off, and every other month either a Monday or a Friday so that I had a three day weekend. I learned early on however, that unless I did certain things the night before, I couldn't fully enjoy my day off . One of those was the dishes. We (I) kind of got into a bad habit of leaving dishes go one or two nights during those ten hour days. But I realized I didn't like waking up on my day off to a sink full of dishes. That was enough to motivate me at night to "get 'er done!"

Someone said wisely that we should begin with the end in mind. This applies to so many areas of my life:

  1. My tongue. How will I feel if I open my big mouth and tell them what I really feel?
  2. My house. How will I feel if I leave this or that undone? Why shouldn't I go ahead and toss some laundry in the wash tonight and dry it tomorrow night? What's preventing me from wiping up the bathroom tonight so I don't have to do it on Saturday?
  3. Children. Although I don't have any, it seems like any good parent would want to begin their parenting with the end in mind, i.e. character development, etc. As a youth leader, I long to see the teens in my small group fully committed to Christ in all areas of their lives. My co-leader and I plan our sessions around these goals.
  4. Everyday chores. It finally occurred to me that dinner can be planned and partially prepared the night before. The other night I cooked some brown rice which was a snap to turn into fried rice tonight. The next night, as soon as I came home from work, I thawed some ground turkey while I put together the fried rice. After dinner, I mixed it into a meatloaf for dinner the next day.
  5. My health and especially, weight. How will I feel after I indulge in that latte? Do I really need to supersize everything? Won't I feel much better if I go ahead and take that walk around the block tonight?
I no longer work the 4-10 schedule, having come to the realization it was taking too much toll on other areas of my life. However, if nothing else, I did learn the value of beginning with the end in mind. I think that's the way the Apostle Paul lived and encouraged others to live. "But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus." Philippians 3:13-14

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Four-part Harmony and T-Ball

Well yesterday was definintely not an "all-about-me" day! It was a niece and nephew day. I took my parents up at noon to hear my almost-nine year old niece play her violin in a perfomance culminating a week-long music camp. And last evening we went to my husband's nephew's t-ball game. The concert was cute - B's group was a little squeaky, as is to be expected for 8-9 year olds just mastering the art of playing along with others. The t-ball game. Well, what can I say - it should have been just three innings long but I swear it was more like six interminable ones. It was also just plain cute though!

What struck me about both of these events was the thought of kids learning to be a part of something bigger. To work in harmony with others. To value each member of the team, no matter how different their part.

Isn't that something we are always learning as adults - where we fit in? I thought about how applicable this is to the blogging world. When I first started out with my blog, I had few goals for my blog. I don't have a lot of time to devote to making it anything more than a brain dump! But as I began to peruse other blogs, mine seemed so insignificant and boring. I have, however, begun to embrace all different types of blogs. I appreciate that we all have a place in the blogging world, and in a larger sense, the body of Christ (for the most part, the ones I visit regularly happen to be of a Christian viewpoint). Isn't it awesome that so many of us who've never met, can be joined together in blogdom? So here are a few of my favorites; I hope you'll take the time to check out a few of these blogs this week.

There's Debra's blog. I think Debra was the first blogger who actually linked to me. Her blog has been such a blessing to me. She is so transparent and someone I can relate to. I read her entries often as part of my devotions, taking time to look up scriptures she references.

Then there's Cindy's blog. Cindy never fails to have something interesting to share, be it a book or interesting news snippet.

Bonnie's blog is unique in that she combines her love of photography with her way with words. I've even sent some of her posts to my sister to share with her nature-loving kids.

Robin Lee Hatcher has quickly become one of my favorite authors, and I was thrilled to learn she had a blog. She graciously allows readers peeks into her writing journey, as well as her walk with God.

Another author's blog I frequent is that of Angela Hunt. Although I have no aspirations to write fiction, I admire Angela's discipline. She just cranks out the books. I recently finished The Truth Teller and if you're up for suspenseful, fast moving fiction, you need to check out Angela's books.

I started reading Lisa Samson's books about a year ago. Church Ladies impressed me as being a picture of community the way Christ intended it. Funny and unpredictable, Lisa has a way of peeling back the layers and exposing life for what it really is.

My sis is a reluctant blogger, but I'm trying to encourage her that she belongs here. Currently she's caught up writing upon four little lives, but she has lots of good thoughts to share with the rest of us, whenever she finds a moment.

My writing pal, Katrina, is back to blogging with a vengeance after the birth of her 2nd son. She has faithfully encouraged me through my writing (and other) ups and downs over the years. A published magazine writer, she always has something worth reading at her blog.

Through Katrina's blog, I've "met" fellow blogger Jennifer at Snapshot. I'm enjoying Jennifer's enthusiasm for blogging - she has jumped right in there and made herself at home, bravely participating in Carnivals and other blogging adventures!

And a recent find has been IslandSparrow. The pictures alone on her blog are worth a visit - she lives on Prince Edward Island in Canada, and her posts often spout a bit from the beloved Anne of Green Gables series. I think she's especially lucky to have had Robin Mark of Revival in Belfast at her church recently!

There are so many other worthwhile blogs out there. Some are simple and just put forth a bit of personal insight from time to time. Others are big-time bloggers, hosting carnivals and all sorts of fun things to bring bloggers together. Some are almost devotional in nature. But all have a place in the blogging world. It's not for me to try to be like any of these blogs. Just as Brianna can only be expected to play her part well on the violin, and like we hope Casey learns to stayand cover 2nd base, I only have to be true to myself in blogging, as well as in my writing.

Friday, June 23, 2006

One for the Moms

I've been enjoying this blog for sometime now. The authors are a pastor's wife and her three grown daughters. I don't necessarily agree with everything they say, but they have lots of good advice which they share with such grace and humility. Recently they've been posting a series on the benefits of routines. They prefaced the series with an article entitled "It's Just a Suggestion." So many times, we get hung up on petty issues within the Christian community, while we neglect the things that matter to the heart of God. I appreciated their approach to this topic and find it applicable to any area where people differ on opinion.

I think you'll be blessed by this series if you're a mom. I think you'll be blessed by their blog if your desire as a woman is to serve Christ.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Dentist of the Month Club

I am pathetic when it comes to dentists. It all started with Tom. Tom had been my dentist since I was a teen. One day shortly after we were married, I came home to find a letter from Tom (yes, we called our dentist Tom) saying that he was leaving the dental practice to go into business with his brother. Now Tom was admittedly tall, dark and handsome but I swear that's not the reason I went to him. He was friendly and gentle and above all, never scolded you about your teeth. He went above and beyond the call of duty and was willing to do whatever he could to get you taken care of. And his hygenists were fantastic too.

Exit Tom. Enter long line of unacceptable dentists.

There was his successor. We'll call her Rose. Rose wanted to sell me a new mouth. No, at 35, I'm really not considering braces, thank you! Goodbye Rose.

Enter Robert. Robert too wanted to sell me a whole new mouth. Starting with the replacement of all fillings. And he informed me that I needed not one but two crowns. Goodbye Robert.

Enter Carol. Get out the popcorn and giant boxes of candy - Carol can show you movies of your mouth while she holds you captive in the dentist chair! Gee, wonder if there's a matinee viewing. (I'm not the squeamish type but mouths just gross me out so please don't put mine on the big screen!) Oh, and when's the last time someone cleaned your waiting room? This dust has got to be migrating back to the theatre - ugh. Goodbye Carol.

Hello Jack. Dear sweet Jack. Absolutely no complaints here, except you're not in my plan. Well, it does get on my nerves that you only have half walls separating your patient areas. It does kind of gross me out to hear the garbled moans of the victim next to me. BUT you're not in my insurance plan anyways, so I must go. Goodbye Jack.

Hello Jenn. Jenn joined Tom's practice after he left. Jenn was just out of college and I actually trusted her to install a crown in my mouth. Not half bad. You're awfully far though, in spite the fact my sis lives nearby. So for lack of a better reason, Goodbye Jenn.

Hello Jeff. Wow, you still have one of those spitoons, eh? Awfully old-fashioned, aren't we? (Spitoons gross me out). Goodbye Jeff.

Hello Alan. Jeff's opposite. Alan's got a million new procedures he'd like to try on me. Cool. (Not really but Alan looks like Bob Saget of Full House so we'll stick with him.) Oooh, you know what? Your hygenist is getting on my nerves. Same spiel everytime and I think I heard her give the same spiel to the five-year old before me. Goodbye Alan.

Hello again, Jack. Remember me? Hey, new hairdo? I like it. Hey, can I come back? Thanks - you're the greatest. Uh-oh. You're not in my plan. I can't afford to pay for a $900 crown out of pocket. Goodbye Jack.

The above incidents are true and transpired over an eight year period. I left a few out, I'm sure. The perfect dentist still eludes me. I have the beginnings of another toothache, not to mention a root canal in desperate need of a crown. I really need to find someone. I'm thinking about sending out applications and interviewing potential candidates? What do you think?

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Inspirational Thought for the Day

Saw this in a newsletter I get and it was too good not to share:

As long as we have hope,
we have direction, the energy to move, and the map to move by.
We have a hundred alternatives, a thousand paths and an infinity of dreams.
Hopeful, we are halfway to where we want to go;
hopeless, we are lost forever."

And of course, for those who find their hope in Christ, this rings
even more true.

Exit Stage Right

During the early 90's, I had the privilege of traveling as a chaperone with a Christian drama group one summer. For three months, the twelve of us (ten teens and one other male chaperone) traveled up and down the east coast, stopping at church after church to perform a play based on the life of Adoniram Judson. It was a truly great experience (despite the lack of AC in the van that hot summer). If you've ever been involved in drama, you know exactly what I mean. When everyone willingly does their part, whether it be running the lights or playing the lead role, the story comes together beautifully.

Years later and supposedly much wiser, I see that is much like the drama that is our lives. So often we want to be the director but that's not the role God has for us to fill. How much sweeter the story is when we sit back and allow Him to direct our steps, willing to obey and trusting that He sees the big picture.

Jeremiah knew this. "I know, O LORD, that a man's life is not his own; it is not for man to direct his steps." Are we willing to step aside as directors, relinquish the need to be in control, and allow God to produce His good work in our lives?

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Fun Quiz

Jennifer at Snapshot has tagged me and I cannot resist a fun quiz!

1. Grab the book nearest you, turn to page 18 and find line 4. "and above all it needs to be visual" (Writing from Within by Bernard Selling)
2. Stretch out your left arm as far as you can. What can you touch? The door of my armoire desk
3. What is the last thing you watched on TV? a snippet of Scarborough Country
4. Without looking, guess what time it is. 9:58 pm
5. Now look at the clock. What is the actual time? 9:57 pm
6. With the exception of the computer, what can you hear? My husband putzing upstairs
7. When did you last step outside? What were you doing? out to dinner with a friend
8. Before you started this survey, what did you look at? my business cards I'm printing
9. What are you wearing? striped polo and jean shorts
10. Did you dream last night? nope!
11. When did you last laugh? with a friend tonight
12. What is on the walls of the room you are in? paint?
13. Seen anything weird lately? hmmm, poop in the park where it did not belong. more disturbing than weird I guess.
14. What do you think of this quiz? Funny!
15. What is the last film you saw? The Mothman Prophecies, b/c someone I work with told me they were actually in the film as a walk-on. Didn't see them though!
16. If you became a multi-millionaire overnight, what would you buy? probably a different house, truth be told!
17. Tell me something about you that I don't know. I can't ride in a car w/o falling asleep
18. If you could change one thing about the world, regardless of guilt and politics, what would you do? The justice system, which I'd like to see better deterents for crime, i.e. people should know up front this action will result in this punishment . . .
19. Do you like to dance? Yep. Would love to learn Irish set dancing - the one that's sort of like our square dancing, but also like their step dancing (in square formation)
20. George Bush: Daddy Bush --; Baby Bush -- I didn't get this one. I thought it was one of those achievement type test questions - George is to Daddy as Baby is to . . . ???
21. Imagine your first child is a girl, what do you call her? Sarah Elizabeth
22. Imagine your first child is a boy, what do you call him? Hey kid!
23. Would you ever consider living abroad? No way!
24. What do you want God to say to you when you reach the pearly gate? Welcome home!
25. 3 people who must also do this quiz in their blog: I'll tag Cindy, Dionna, and my sis!

Cheap Date

Dinner at DQ - $7.69
Diet Coke float for dessert - $2.11
A drive in the country and then down by the mill where my husband now works - priceless!

It stinks down by the mill, just like he said it does. But he didn't take me there to prove his point. As we neared the mill, he said, "Open your windows and take a deep breath!" I did and mmmm! Honeysuckle! You don't usually think of guys liking certain fragrances but Mike absolutely loves the smell of honeysuckle. And I love that he focuses on the honeysuckle, rather than on the stinky mill!

And . . . Yankee Candle makes a honeysuckle candle so I'll be looking for one of those on Ebay!

Monday, June 19, 2006


Main Entry: re·sil·ience
Pronunciation: ri-'zil-y&n(t)s
Function: noun
1 : the capability of a strained body to recover its size and shape after deformation caused especially by compressive stress
2 : an ability to recover from or adjust easily to misfortune or change

I truly love gardening. Although I'm sure my husband thinks otherwise when he watches yet-to-be planted flowers wilting in their pots. Never fear, I say. Last night I planted a few hapless petunias and nicotania. They looked rather sad and droopy once they were placed in the container, and continued to look pathetic even after I watered them well. This morning however, after an early morning rainshower, I peeked outside and their faces were upturned, their colors bright and their leaves looked strong and healthy. And I was pleased that I had not given up on them.

Are you resilient? Do you bounce back easily? Although I'd like to think I'm pretty resilient, admittedly sometimes I still feel a bit wilted and droopy after a crisis hits or change rolls my way. I know though, without a shadow of a doubt, that I will bounce back. I will get up again. Not because of anything I do or any great power I possess. And certainly not because I feel like it or have the strength to do so. But I will, simply because the life that is in me is not of me. It's of Christ. And He never gives up on His own.

Resilience. I'm liking that word this week!

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Who Me? A Shopaholic?

I don't think so. Especially when it comes to clothes! I must have missed that gene. Especially when it comes to summer clothes. I don't have the drive to get out there and fight the throngs surrounding the clearance racks, and I hate paying high prices for something I'll wear for about eight weeks out of the year. I can never seem to remember to shop off-season. Most of my clothing purchases are acts of desperation (i.e. what will my co-workers think if I wear this pair of tan khakis for the third time this week?)

I think the problem is my preference for the familiar. Around the house, I wear the same t-shirt and shorts for a day or so, until walks off to the hamper. Or perhaps it's a bit of shyness. Once my mom bought me an Easter dress when I came home from college for the holiday break. Easter morning she asked me why I wasn't wearing it. I politely explained that I'd have to wear a bag over my head if I wore it that day. Huh? It was so bright and pretty, people were sure to ask, "Is that new?" I hated that kind of attention. If I waited a few months before wearing it, I could honestly respond, "This old thing?!" So even when I do buy new clothes, I tend to just look for replacements of my favorite things. The basics. Tan, navy and black khakis. Sweaters and blouses to match. One nice suit for dress-up day.

My other problem is, in spite of my love for all things art, and my eye for color and design, I have no clue when it comes to picking out matching clothes. A foray into a department store with myriads of colors and styles sends me into a mental tizzy. I don't want to work when I go clothes shopping. Please, be kind to me - hang suggested matches on the same rack. Make it easy for me. (That's what my favorite store, Christopher & Banks, does and it's great).

And what's the deal with some little dweeb in Paris telling me what's in style? Excuse me, but I don't care to wear what looks like a negligee to work! I like my tan skirts. I don't like your strapless tops and high cut shorts. And where's the style I just got accustomed to last summer? I'll tell YOU what's cute and what I like and you make that, Mr. Designer and I'll buy it. Okay?

When my sister and I lived together, shopping was easy. Sis would come home on a Friday evening with some clothing purchases. I'd find out where she got them and go pick up the same outfit for myself the next day in my size, and if available, a different color! I'm sure it irritated her that her big sis copied off her but she never let on. It was kind of funny because we looked so darn much alike and wearing the same outfits only added to people's confusion. One morning she and I both ended up with the same outfit on. We both refused to change, so off we headed for the small Christian school where we taught - she in fifth grade, me in junior high. Needless to say we got a few funny looks!

So . . . any shopaholics out there with tips to share?

Monday, June 12, 2006

Big Bike Crash!

Okay, so the top story headlining the news in my town right now is the motorcycle crash of a certain Super Bowl champion quarterback. You know the news will be "standing by live," proclaiming to have been "first on the scene," and of course, committed to bring us the latest. Hundreds, no - thousands of people will be glued to their TVs, radios and internet news sites today waiting to hear an update.
That's fine. I hope the guy is okay - really, I do. I'm not even going to get into the fact that he probably should have been wearing a helmet. Nope. All I want to say is there will be many people hurt today in accidents around our city. Someone's house will burn down. Someone's child will be hit by an errant driver. A teenager in the prime of his life may be shot in a drive-by shooting. So what right do we have to focus on one person only? Who will be standing by at the home of the mother whose child will not come home tonight? Tomorrow who will be thinking about the family whose lost everything when their house burned down? What does it say about our society that we let someone in a little box in front of a little camera tell us who rates?
This is my rant for the year. I'm not usually one to get on a soapbox about these things, especially because I usually don't feel I have an actionable solution. This time, I think I do. It's what I usually try to do when a news story is hyped for hours on end. It's simple: I don't watch it. Imagine if people all over decided to do the same. Get the facts and move on. At some point, the message would come through loud and clear. We don't need to "produce" tragedies. Yes, people need to be informed. No, we don't need negative and gory details piped into our minds like caffeine in an I.V. We don't need speculation and would-be lawyers tossing out their take on the issue. (News talk shows - whoever came up with that concept? Don't get me started!) Just the facts. That's all we need. What happened and how can people help?
Oops, time for the news! (Just kidding!)


Saturday, June 10, 2006

Little by Little

At my weigh-in today at Weight Watchers, I was happily surprised to learn I'm down to within half a pound of my 10% goal! Woo-hoo! Sometimes I can't believe that I'm PAYING to lose weight but after trying unsuccessfully for two years, I really needed to do something. I'm not that big of girl but even 10 lbs. slows me down and my back ends up hurting. Some simple math gave me a picture of where I'd be if I kept gaining at the same incremental rate.

The trade-off: I have not bought any new clothes since I started, which I certainly would have needed. I'm fitting in all kinds of old stuff now - old favorite stuff! So I figure what I've spent on meetings (and getting connected) is worthwhile.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Destruction is a Beautiful Thing . . .

. . . well, it is when it involves the demolition of a very rotted out porch on the back of our house! We call it the room to nowhere because you can't get to it from inside the house, yet it was completely enclosed, with windows & a door. Ever since we moved in, I've been wanting that thing to go. Every spring I get out there and shopvac away all the cobwebs and other debris. When we have picnics, we usually put the food out there, but you can't sit out there because the place heats up like a sauna. Mike is taking down all but the roof and slab. He will put posts and a rail and then it will be a nice place to sit. It's a beautiful thing! I'll post some pics sometime.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

What is it about editing?

Disclaimer: The references to "editing" below refer to actual work I do for people who ask me to do it! I do not in general read everything with a pair of shears in mind!

I love to edit. I love to tear through someone else's words like a pair of sharp scissors through uncut cloth. I must harbor some secret aggression that comes out when I edit! I think I love editing even more than writing. To me, it's still art. It's more like sculpting something out of wood or clay than taking a brush to a blank canvas. The words are there but they need shaped into something pleasing to the ear. It's especially satisfying when someone accepts my suggestions as an improvement to their document

It makes me think of when the apostle Paul likened our Christian lives to epistles, "known and read of men." Yes, my life is a book. And hopefully people will read it and see for themselves the picture of Christ. But I know my life "book" is nothing without the constant editing of the Father. Yet I wonder, am I "editable?" Do I willingly submit to the places where God needs to cut out some negative attitudes? Do I allow His words and thoughts to be pasted in and become part of my mindset?

When I edit someone else's work (or even my own for that matter), it's never to squash their ideas. It's always with good intentions, to make what is good even better. And that's what God has in mind when He works in my life: His good will. Will I allow Him to have His way?

P.S. It was a nice idea - 30 days of blogging - but I can't see it happening! Who was I kidding?

Monday, June 05, 2006

Sunday - God-thoughts: Twice is Nice

It always amazes me how kids can watch the same video over and over again. Or likewise enjoy the same bedtime story every night. Sometimes we adults just don't get it, do we? We expend great amounts of effort trying to find the latest and greatest for kids, be it toys, movies or books, only to be sorely disappointed when they display a preference for the tried and true.

In our Adult Bible Fellowship class today, we began a discussion of Chronicles with the question: why did Ezra take the time to recount the familiar stories of Israel in this book? Some have called it a sanitized version of Kings, as it lacks the some of the more personal stories we find in Kings. We came to the conclusion that it was important for the children of Israel, returning from exile, to hear those stories yet again. They needed to be reminded of God's unfailing promises and, I think, learn how they fit into the story of their great heritage.

Lately I've been attempting to make a habit of reading things twice. After reading Circle of Quiet last summer and resisting the urge to mark up the library book, I got my own copy and have been enjoying underlining and highlighting parts I want to remember. A few summers ago I began doing something different when reading my Bible. Instead of zipping through the book so I can check a little box on a schedule, I take my time and read through each chapter twice. Actually I start day one reading chapters 1-2. The second day, I read chapter 2-3 and so forth. I always find something stands out to me on my second reading through that I missed the first time.

Another area where I'm finding twice is nice is menu planning. I hit upon a great recipe for tilapia a few months ago and my husband absolutely loves it. So that's my recipe for fish now and we have it that way at least twice a month. A few favorites repeated throughout the months goes a long way towards simplifying meal planning.

So that's my thought for today: twice is nice. How about you - have you found this be true in your life and if so, where?

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Happy Blogging Anniversary to Me!

Wow, it hardly seems like two years have passed since I entered the wonderful world of blogging. Reading back over my entries two years ago has been quite fun. I thought about doing another "30 Days of Blogging" during this month to celebrate this milestone. I'm thinking I might do some specific types of posts for each day of the week, such as:

Sunday: God-thoughts (reflections on the Sunday sermon, etc.)
Monday: Writerly Wit (thoughts on writing, one of the purported purposes of this blog!)
Tuesday: Tip of the Week
Wednesday: Book or movie review and/or recommendation
Thursday: Ramblings (whatever's on my mind)
Friday: Recipe Rave
Saturday: Writing Prompts (based on one of the Writers' Digest writing prompts for that week)

I'm not promising anything but I thought this might be fun to do. We'll see if I can hang in there.

Friday, June 02, 2006

Bible Journaling

Many people I know keep a journal of some sort. I did for years, only I was never able to be consistent. Each renewed attempt meant yet another notebook was needed for a fresh start. Until I came across this free workshop: The author who put this together has since died but his wife graciously allows Writers Helper to continue to offer this online workshop completely free. It changed not only the way I write, but also (and more importantly) the way I read the Bible and my journaling method. And guess what? Since I started using this method in 2003, I'm still on the same notebook (okay, I write small and use college-ruled theme books). I encourage anyone who has ever attempted to journal as part of their devotion time, or is interested in improving their writing, to check out this workshop. I see there's another workshop available now called "Write with Purpose" and I plan to check that out soon.

The neatest thing about Glenn's method is you keep an index in the front of your journal. This allows you to look back over the months and get a bird's eye view of how God has been working in your life. Just this morning, I sat and read through a years worth of entries (I don't journal every day, more like 2-3 times a week). What a blessing to be reminded that, even when I don't see it, God is in control and working in my life.

Today I realized that, although I believe in a God of miracles, for some reason, I've always felt a disconnect between God's miracles and my own life. I guess my thinking has been I don't deserve any of those miracles. Talk about double-minded! Wow. Nevertheless, looking back through my journal over the past years, I couldn't help but notice God has nevertheless been working miracles all along! Even in this doubting heart. I'm so glad God doesn't base His love for me on any merit of my own. What a great God I serve!

Thursday, June 01, 2006

God's Tender Love

A couple that sits several rows in front of us recently had a baby girl. Nothing out of the ordinary except they already have two teenage daughters. I love watching the dad with his new little princess. But what really thrills me is that his two older girls get to see for themselves a picture of the love their father lavished on them when they were babes themselves. I hope they catch it and bask even more in their father's love today.

God's tender love is all around us. Sometimes we feel it directly in our lives, like the warmth of the sun after a spring shower. Sometimes we see it in the lives of those around us. But it's there. I hope we catch it.