Thursday, October 8, 2015


With the recent articles and updates on "Hurricane Katrina victims, 10 years later" it makes it hard to ignore the fact that my family is celebrating 10 years after my husband's "hurricane relief accident!"

Life 10 years ago looked so different!  My kids were 10, 14, and almost 16 years of age.  Life was busy.  We were in many different activities and my main job was keeping it all straight and being their taxi driver.  The Hubs had a good job and enjoyed working on different projects, including disaster relief with a group at church.  The kids were old enough to know what was happening and remember it.  Thank goodness for our faith we were (and still are) plugged into a church that seeks to live and serve like Jesus!  When the Hubs was crushed by that tree people came out of the woodwork - no pun intended - to help us!

There were things that happened right before the accident that I wondered about later.  We just had family pictures made, and I wondered, "Was that our last family picture?"  We had gone on a 2 week driving vacation to California that summer and I thought, "Wow, I'm glad we did that because he may not be up to doing something like that ever again..."  I felt like God prepared me the month before as I struggled with a couple of weird situations and a vein surgery that didn't work and asked my CWBS group to pray for me just 2 days before the accident.  The Friday night I had "all to myself" with the kids spending the night with friends and how I enjoyed my quiet time, watching a movie, scrapbooking and eating chocolate cake from my favorite place while he was gone on the hurricane relief trip.  God blessed me with a time of relaxation before the busyness of hospitals, surgeries, and recovery began.  So many things come to mind...

So many God-things - blessings amidst the pain:  The helmet he took that day, even though he had not worn one previous days.  The tree falling on the strongest part of his body, his pelvis.  A friend who had paramedic training was there almost immediately after the tree fell on him.  Friends who flew me down to Galveston via private plane which was crazy since it was OU-Texas weekend.  The doctors who told me they took care of everything that was going to kill him in an hour.  My mother who was able to just move in and take care of the kid's temporary needs.  Learning to assert myself with the hospital staff.  Christians near and far praying, loving, and taking care of us.  It was a horrible, wonderful time and I'm so extremely thankful that today we can look back and smile about it.  You hear people say that and it's true now.

Thanks for reading today and I pray you can look back over times in your life that God has brought you through the pain and you can see the blessings.

Good old-fashioned scrapbooking, huh?

Sunday, October 4, 2015


The Women's Ministry at our church is having a "Skills Night" soon!  It is a time for women to get together and teach introductory skills to others, including: sewing, cake decorating, even first aid and smart phone tips! I decided to to showcase my skills and made this little sign out of burlap for our registration table.  I thought it came out pretty good since I freehanded it (no pattern).
We wanted to have a fake cake on the table so I made this out of a styrofoam form from Hobby Lobby, joint compound, and caulk.  I then took it to the gal who will teach Basics of Cake Decorating to add some decor to it.  It looks VERY real!  
Finally, I went to a ladies retreat this past weekend and enjoyed making several crafts - these little pumpkins were what I made.  I especially like the canning jar lid one and it literally took me 10 minutes!  My kinda craft!

Wednesday, September 30, 2015


To think that I'm in my 50's now, and my kids are practically grown up!!!  Here's what they've been up to lately:

My married daughter is now officially an Arizonan (I guess that's what they call themselves)!  She is living with her Hubs in a very remote area just minutes from the Grand Canyon.  She has some job prospects right now and is enjoying being reunited with him and the dog.  They are still working on their Tiny House Bus - not really living in it yet.

My oldest son is still working on building his videography business, and on the side, has started a mobile coffee service with his cousin!  Good thing his girl likes coffee!

Our youngest is multi-tasking too, as he attempts to go to college and work on his various projects like the snow-cone business and odd jobs. He is constantly moving!  His latest effort is revamping the Mystery Machine for the business.  He just took these "before" pictures.

Friday, September 25, 2015


Have you seen Butternut squash vases?  Pinterest gets me busy again!  :)

I found this recently when looking for ideas for a fall bridal shower.  In the meantime, since I was hosting a luncheon after Bible study this week and I saw Butternut squash on sale for $.59 lb., I thought it was time to give this a try!

You just cut off the top and hollow out a little, like a pumpkin.

I picked some flowers from my garden.  I'm sure if I paid for some fancy flowers they'd be even cuter.  But I was pretty happy with them.

If you want them to last longer, you can insert a test tube (Hobby Lobby) as a little vase inside the squash.  I decided for my purposes not to do that.  But the flowers did wilt quickly.  I think it's because the flowers are delicate, but maybe because the water I put in the squash absorbed into it.  

Anyway, it was a fun touch to our luncheon!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015


We had our first college dinner of the school year the other night!  It's always an effort to find a date when my husband's schedule coordinates well with our college son's schedule!  But worth it - you never know if you just made a kid's day or will be there at just the right time for them.  AND it makes a pretty good excuse for me to make some desserts that I am just not making a lot anymore.  YUM!

This year is pretty special because we have not only our son but two nieces and a nephew all at the same school!  So they all came for dinner along with some friends, even if it was at different times.

On the menu:

Smoked chicken
Artichoke chicken casserole
Green salad
Veggie tray with spicy Ranch dip
Green beans
Roasted sweet potato slices
Roasted potato slices
Hot rolls
Oreo Ice cream dessert
Peanut butter sheet cake

Saturday, September 19, 2015


This is a sculpture I saw on our recent trip to Santa Fe, NM.  I loved the name, "Not Afraid To Look."  It's something that causes you to ponder.  What is he looking at?  What is the fearsome thing that he is not afraid to see?  In my mind it might be the future.  I like the way the artist didn't put him with his head looking down, like in a depressed way.  He's not looking into himself.  He's looking out and slightly up toward heaven.  He's facing whatever it is with calm and confidence.

It reminds me of the Proverbs 31 woman:

She is clothed with strength and dignity, 
    and she laughs without fear of the future.

I guess that's what good art does.  It causes you to wonder what the artist was thinking and causes you to interpret what it means to you, too.  Which way are you looking?  Up and out?  Or with your head down between your knees?

Tuesday, September 15, 2015


Well it was my turn to bring breakfast goodies to my class Sunday and lo and behold all my frozen loaves of banana/pumpkin bread were gone!  So I needed to make something and didn't feel like going to the store, but I did have a can of cranberry sauce in the pantry.  I found this recipe for bread made with cranberry sauce and tried it's delicious!  I adapted it slightly.  It's a great blend of tart with sweet.  The brown sugar and cinnamon in it really makes it taste like fall!  Give it a try.
Cranberry Sauce Bread
Makes 1 9" loaf 
1 1/2 cups whole berry cranberry sauce, divided
1/3 cup canola oil
1/2 cup granulated white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 large egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9x5” loaf pan, and set aside.

In a large bowl or the base of a mixer, beat together 1 cup of the cranberry sauce, oil, sugar, egg, and vanilla. In another bowl, combine the flour, salt, baking soda, and ground cinnamon. Stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients just until evenly combined.

Spread into the prepared pan. Dollop the remaining cranberry sauce on top, then bake about 50 minutes, or until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean.