Thursday, December 20, 2012

beautiful words

I am enjoying some new (for me) Christmas music this year. This song especially is beautiful and the words powerful. An excerpt:

....." By holy intervention
An act of love divine
In union with mortality
Make incarnation mine."

Beautiful.... the Holy One, taking on flesh, walking our roads,eating our foods, getting dusty with our dirt
all to save us.

I keep thinking of Mary and her amazing role in this. She began His life by delivering him. He ended His by delivering her. I wonder if He has a special place in heaven for her; his mother/daughter?

I hope to write more later....

Wednesday, November 14, 2012


was one of those days. You know, where everything goes somewhat wrong and you do stupid things. First off, it was my day off, but I had to go in to the deli over lunch time to help with the lunch crowds. And today everybody in Thomaston, 1/2 of Atlanta and parts of Colorado and Puerto Rico came in to eat. It was hectic for awhile because we only have six people working and we needed more like 10. People wanting sandwiches, people calling in sandwich orders, people calling to see what kind of soup we have, people placing cake orders, making 14 gallons of soup, deliveries to unload and put away. At one point we just laughed cause there was nothing better to do.

So when I was finally able to leave I stopped at Dollar Tree to pick up a few things for our dinner tonight. Dollar Tree really has some neat stuff although most of it is fairly cheap (as in quality). I happily discovered this:
and added it to my cart. It hit me a full 4 hours later what I had actually bought. My lower set of braces came off last week and I'm going in tomorrow for my retainer and I've been thinking of it all along as dentures. I think I even told someone I'm getting my dentures tomorrow. Thankfully it only cost a dollar so it's not worth a trip back (or my dignity) to return it.

So after that experience, I filled up the white car with gas. It's a little different than my car because the gas tank lid screws completely off versus screwing off and hanging by it's cord. So I filled up, and was heading home when I saw the lid was open. I immediately was scared that I had forgotten to put the lid back on and it was laying somewhere on the busy four lane highway I had just turned off of. So I quickly pulled over, and relief! I had just forgotten to close the lid.

On the way home I was mentally reviewing supper plans which were to include a white chicken chili, blueberry muffins, and a new starbucks caramel apple cider copycat recipe that I had found. There, laying on the floor of the passenger side, was a big jug of apple juice staring up at me. I thought I had bought apple cider which I needed for the drink. So we didn't have that special drink after all. We had Fruit Punch KoolAid instead. It's not what you'd call an upgrade at all.

Oh, and I was feeling all DIY-ey and made some homemade shaving cream. It was super easy to make but ended up being really runny and not very lathery. Ingredients include baby oil, shampoo, conditioner, and lotion.

Then my mom came home sick. And when Mama's sick, it kinda affects everybody. Hopefully it won't hang on long, although friends of ours have been battling this for over a week.

But then there were a few bright spots in the day. The white chicken chili ended up being delicious and creamy. It has the perfect amount of heat to make it interesting.

I enjoyed playing with the dogs for awhile. They were in desperate need of attention and I got in some fresh air.

I also did some writing. I do very little of that so an assignment is just what I need to make it happen.

And like I said, I was feeling DIY-ish so I spray painted some thrift store picture frames white. I intend to fill them with scrapbook paper for a cheap, artsy looking wall display at the store. I'm not a very even spray-painter, but that's all I'll say cause this half of the post is supposed to be positive :).

Oh, and then there's the chocolate candy bars infused with strawberries that came all the way from Europe via Aldi, the supermarket. You can't be too upset after eating a few bars of that.goodness. Why can't Americans make good chocolate?

So all in all, it's a good ole world, even after one of those days.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

A New Post (cause I have nothing more creative to call it)

Good evening....and a quiet evening it is. It seemed made for dusting off an almost forgotten blog and trying to catch up on some news.
A lot has happened in the past few months. God seems to enjoy changing things up every now and then, which keeps life from getting monotonous. Some of the changes have been good and some hard. And through it all, God steadies us with His faithfulness, grounds us with His love, and comforts us in His great, big God-arms.
A very trivial, yet welcome change was the addition of Maya, to our family. She's half Australian shepherd and half German shepherd, and altogether adorable and fun. We can't help but love her, even when she pulls laundry off the line, adds yet another stick to her scraggly collection on the patio, and jumps up on us in muddy exuberance at seeing us come home. We are working on her training and are happy that she seems to be a fairly stubborn  smart dog.

She could about get away with murder with that look!
Part of her playfulness/naughtiness issue is the fact that Shadow, her rolemodel, mother figure, seems to be "in the family way" and gets tired of immature puppy antics. Bless her heart :)
I've also been on a few trips since the last post. One such trip was to get acquainted with this beautiful little baby:

Her mom, Tina, and I taught school together in Arkansas and therefore (that is such a KJVword) have lots of shared memories of good times together. I so enjoyed loving up on a little baby again and Sierra sure is a honey!
My family spent Labor Day down in South Ga with my mom's folks. We always have such a fun time and get to do things such as visit the Islands. We spent part of the day on St. Simons along, with bakoodles of other people. I tried to get my fill of the beautiful old live oaks with the spanish moss hanging from them. I  would give a lot to have one in our yard. St. Simons Is. is the setting of many of Eugenia Price's books and that makes it doubly interesting.
Another major highlight was going flying with my cousin Derrick, who recently got his pilot's license. Flying in a small plane is just way more fun than riding in a jet, because you can do more stuff in a small plane. Derrick is a terrific pilot and did a wonderful job of taking a number of plane loads up and over the area. We are so lucky to have him in the family :) ;)
My grandma is such a good sport and enjoys stuff like that as much as the rest of us. She climbed right in as agilely as could be and thoroughly enjoyed her ride. I want to be just like her when I'm her age!
And then God brought us to a valley.... a deep, dark valley which we are still in but still feel His Presence.
Our dear friend/member of our church was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor two and a half weeks ago. It was a huge blow/shock to us. She went into surgery a few days later and they removed what they could of it. She was in the hospital for a little over a week and came home last Saturday. You can read more of the story here.
She is the mom of some of my best friends, so walking through this valley with them has been so very difficult. Everything happened so fast and they didn't have much time to process things before more were piled on. And yet, I see peace in them.... resignation to God's will.... and a sweet spirit of acceptance. And like I mentioned, seeing people you love suffer so deeply and not being able to do anything but care for them is hard. I'd love to make the pain go away, turn the clock back in time, shake them up from the bad dream. But I can't. Here are a few words I penned in a very dark time for me emotionally in this:























Please continue to pray for the Whitt family. The future looks uncertain. There are many things they will have to work through and figure out.
But God is good, and somehow that thought comforted me through this. For some reason, it is His will and His intentions for His children are always good.
Well, I should run along. I hope to post more in the future. Several topics include:
1. Restaurant Etiquette (I'm loaded on this one :)
2. What It Means to Be A Southern Lady
3. Living Intentionally and with Purpose in a Ready-Made World
etc. etc.
until then,
Photo credits for all but the Sierra pictures go to Kelly. Don't think i could do stuff like that. Please.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Wherein she returns

Hi y'all!
I know, it's hard to keep up with everything I post on here so just take it easy, okay? :) I have had many posts swirling through my head in the past months but they never made it this far. The convenient thing about mental posts is that they don't have to be edited or polished for viewers pleasure. I'm still trying to figure out the line between writing as a discipline and writing because I can't help it. I took a creative writing class at Bible School one year and our teacher told us never to write unless we can help it. I like that. Typically, when you just can't stop yourself, you put out something that conveys passion and conviction about what you are thinking about. On the other hand, I think writing can be a good discipline.
     Another reason why posting on something as public as the internet is challenging, is because we have no idea who, if anybody are reading the posts. There might be 3 of you, there might be 333 of you, blogger really doesn't tell me all that.
But anyway, a friend of mine (hi, you!) told me over the weekend that she regularly checks my blog to see if there's anything new up and after having disappointed her for 6 months, I figured now is the time to get current!
Today is my day off, meaning that today I am home. I love these days fervently and enjoy just puttering around the house by my lonesome and doing catch up work. I am often greatly inspired to cook while I am at home because I LOVE to cook. To me it's a form of art, a way of expressing what I enjoy through food and spices and condiments. Today I made manicotti. I'll show you how I did it but don't expect a recipe because i'm a cook that doesn't follow rules. I make mine up as I go. Cookbooks are my springboard for cooking but certainly not my rule book. Well, except for baking cookies and cake and all those other things that you have to follow instructions. Maybe tha'ts why I don't enjoy baking....  I have to follow rules. So anyhow, here is my morning of manicotti....

I have two things to say at this point. Number one, I share a love for cooking and especially cooking Italian cuisine with my aunt Marylou. What I don't share is her photography and photo editing skills. What you see in the above picture is a pound of sausage with some fresh mozzarella cheese, some spring onions, some basil and oregano and an egg. Well, you don't see an egg, but it's there. Just didn't want you straining your eyes too horribly looking for it. This dish could probably be made without it but it just felt like it should be in there. I don't believe in predestination in any cases except this one.
Meanwhile I had some manicotti noodles cooking in water. (duh, what else?)

 This is the manicotti in case you needed a mental picture. I guess it's manicotti even if you didn't.

This is the pasta sauce of my choice. There are many options available so I say go with what looks good and sweeten it. A wee bit of sugar adds a pop and really pulls some of the flavors out. I'm really weird that way. I get it from my dad. He taught us how to sweeted Mexican restaurant salsas. They are really, so much better that way. Try it and see if you don't like it better.

 I cooked the noodles a la dente and then stuffed them with the sausage mixture. Pour the sauce over the noodles and bake for I don't know, 45 minutes. I apologize about that brown pan in the above picture. It was the perfect size  for the noodles so I used it. I hold some fairly significant grudges against that dish. It takes me back to my childhood on school mornings. After awakening from peaceful slumbers, wafts of baked oatmeal would come floating back to my bedroom and you know, start my day off on a bad note. It was always served in this brown dish and I've never quite forgiven it.

And here, la-deees and gentlemen, is the finished product. When the sausage was nearly cooked, I sprinkled fresh mozzarella cheese on top. I used fresh because we own a deli and it was readily available but I'm sure the pre-grated stuff would work too. I wanted fresh basil as a garnish but alas! All my basil sprigs are only 3 inches tall and I didn't feel like aborting so young a life.

(the steam arising from the pasta in this picture sorta amuses me. It's heading north east quite rapidly)

I enjoyed an Italian lettuce blend salad with homemade ranch dressing and cashews and more mozzarella cheese. And I ate manicotti. Like all afternoon. My family's really not into Italian cuisine that much which means I probably get the rest of it. Feel the pains of resignation as I accept my plight. 
Anyway, hopefully this inspires you to explore the joys that are manicotti. You can do so many other things with it too. I think a spinach/ricotta cheese stuffing would be good too.

Now this is late and today wasn't my day off. Yesterday was. So I'll  just post and edit later :)
See y'all!