Friday, May 31, 2013

SOUP OF THE DAY...

SWEET CORN CHOWDER WITH BACON!

Amazingly, this soup was really sweet with the fresh corn.  (Almost too sweet for me - may have to add more spice to cut it)  It was also fun to prepare.  I don't buy fresh corn very often, almost never, in fact! Just so much mess!  I do have fond memories of a day at my Grandpa's farm picking and shucking corn.  And being scared of the weird diseased/infested ears...and now I'm thinking, did I ever let my kids help me shuck fresh corn???  I'm wishing now maybe I had - would have been a fun experience.  Another unusual thing to me about this recipe is that you put the corn cobs back into the soup to simmer for a while, I guess to help develop the flavor.  







Tuesday, May 28, 2013

FORGIVE ME...

Forgive me, Lord
for wanting back my time
to do mindless tasks
All these tornado ravaged lives
would love a mindless moment

Forgive me, Lord
for wishing this was over
and my life was back to normal
All these victims
have to find their new normal

Forgive me, Lord
for impure motives
when the world is upside down
All these people
like little children
trying to turn things 
right side up



Just my thoughts this morning...I hadn't posted in a few days and this is what came out!  Blessings for your day and keep praying for Oklahoma tornado victims and relief work!

Saturday, May 25, 2013

GENEROSITY...

is a lovely thing to get to witness!  Disasters somehow bring out the good in folks!  After working at an actual tornado ravaged mobile home park on Wednesday, I admit I was physically and emotionally spent.  (No, I won't tell the dead dog story again) I got a call from someone at the church asking me if I would consider working information/receiving/dispersing donations.  So that's what I've been doing lately and probably will for another week or so.  Hopefully all this craziness will slow down then!  

Pictures of GENEROSITY:

 Little ones happily bringing in donations
Mountains of water

 Just finished homemade quilts from a group of ladies in Burkburnett, TX

 Diapers for the babies

Supplies taking over the old auditorium

 A Kentucky church mailed us 3 large boxes of these drawstring bags 
full of hygiene items - love this idea

So many giving up their free time

Thursday, May 23, 2013

ANOTHER WORLD, NAMED DISASTER...

Had some "Girl time" with my niece, but not spent in the world of fluff...it's cliche but the pictures do speak for themselves.










And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. Galatians 6:9

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

DONATIONS FOR DISASTERS: LESSONS LEARNED FROM MAY 3, 1999

Hello to all my blog buddies.  I woke up this morning and the weight of the disaster is on me and I'm 20 minutes away from it.  Wow, does OK need your prayers!  I'm probably not going to tell you anything new but I just feel the need to say something today and it's the only way I know to say:

HELP!!!

The tornado in Moore, OK was one of the biggest tornadoes ever.  Lives were lost, hundreds are now without homes and there is such tremendous property damage.  Cousins of mine that live down there are okay.  I am getting ready to go to work to help through my Disaster Relief team at church doing whatever we can do today.  

I actually went and worked at the Oakcrest Church of Christ in Moore, OK when we had the last big tornado there on May 3, 1999. This is what I saw and what I learned:  I saw a whole classroom full of stuffed animals.  Not new.  Clothing spread all over the auditorium, much of it without identifiable tags.  People trying to sort the various items by article, size, and gender.  Laundry baskets of dirty shoes.  It was not a pretty sight.  That place smelled to high heaven!  It was embarrassing, folks.  Don't take this opportunity to clean out your closets and old stuff!!!

Gift cards to Walmart, Target, Kohl's, Walgreens, and CVS are the best thing you can do besides making a monetary donation.  This was confirmed last night by a woman in our own congregation whose husband is our new Disaster Relief Coordinator.  They lost their home in Cashion to a tornado just two years ago.  She said, "People mean well, but it is really hard to get sizes right" (they have four children).  Please pray for Joe, our new DR Coordinator as he tackles this incredible task.  He has personal experience and contacts in the community so we can get started being the hands and feet of Jesus today.  

Here's a link to our church if you would like to help:  http://www.mrcc.org


Monday, May 20, 2013

THIS CALLS FOR A STRAWBERRY BANANA MILKSHAKE...

As soon as the tornadoes rolled through our area yesterday, people were out helping - always an awesome thing!  They missed us by a half-mile and thankfully the damage was mostly limited to trees.  The hubs got out with my son and some others from church to help do some Disaster Relief in the neighborhood next to us, while I stayed home, fielded phone calls, and picked strawberries.  Which became my hub's reward.

LITTLE BLESSINGS ARE NOT LITTLE!






Unfortunately the storm grew in strength and did some major damage east of us, so say a prayer for all those that are putting their lives back together today.  Have a great week and count your blessings!

Friday, May 17, 2013

SOUP OF THE WEEK...

SWEET ONION WITH BLUE CHEESE TOASTS!





We got another winner here!  If you are a fan of French Onion soup - you know the kind covered in cheese and croutons?  You'll like this one.  Balsamic Vinegar is one of my favorite things, and it's in it too.  It's delicious and easy to prepare.  The toasts are just a version of a crouton, and I made them with Laughing Cow cheese since it spreads so well.  A crowd came in just about dinner time and they all tried it even though they had already eaten.  The cheese toasts were a big hit and most of them enjoyed the soup too.  


Wednesday, May 15, 2013

HOMESPUN BABY SHOWER...

or call it Pinterest-y, just thought I'd throw an old-fashioned word in there!

This was for my nephew's wife - he's the first little one we were around a lot as a young married couple and he became ours in our minds.  We are thrilled that at 30 years old, they are becoming parents! Her sister gave her a beautiful shower with lots of homemade touches and delicious food:

One of my favorite touches was the hand decorated punch cups!

Pretty decor and yummy food: Chicken salad on croissants, blueberry scones with lemon curd, mini quiches, lemon bars, veggies and dip, and cake.  OH so good!

 Little momma with her MIL, my SIL

My SIL is an awesome seamstress and made a diaper bag full of goodies including these onesies!

Speaking of old-fashioned, they aren't finding out what they are having.  
Kind of refreshing!
So all we know is it will be Fletcher or Mallory!   



Sunday, May 12, 2013

PROUD MAMA MOMENTS...



This is my son's Mama at school, the vocal music director.  He has her for two hours a day - Men's Choir and Show Choir.  At the Performing Arts banquet, my son was surprised to receive a leadership award for underclassmen!  It was really bittersweet since his vocal music teacher is moving to Houston.  She has lost both parents and a brother in death the past few years and has no more family left nearby.  In her speech at the banquet, she encouraged her students to continue to strive to be the best and to welcome the new teacher in with lots of enthusiasm and less criticism.  She's taught these kids lot of lessons in and out of the classroom.  In fact, she taught all 3 of my kids in the music program.  We will really miss her!  

I love year-end events where so much love and appreciation is spread around!
 His prom date friend got the Girls Leadership award, so they make quite a pair!

Also, I learned that my son had become good friends with this exchange student from Denmark.  I was glad to know he's been kind to others (between you and me, this girl looks like - 30).

My PACE buddies - the gals that I work production meals with, do fundraisers with, and sneak into the auditorium to get peeks of our kids with!  Several of these ladies will "graduate" with their seniors but thankfully our president will still be around to keep me company as we work to support the program.

video
A song to leave you with from ACT II, the awarding winning show choir, 
directed by our wonderful teacher!

Friday, May 10, 2013

A RARE DAY...

is when I go walk and then play outside in my flower beds for 3 hours!  Just the most wonderful weather today - I just couldn't - and didn't have to go inside and get ready for anything for a while.

It gives you the chance to enjoy the little things:

 Gorgeous orange on pink

Weird bugs

 These snapdragons survived the winter and have already started blooming

Just got this awesome sun bronze coleus yesterday  

 Our new little friends next door...those ducks like to honk

Enjoy your weekend!

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

SOUP OF THE WEEK...

GREEN LENTIL!



This soup surprised me!  We enjoyed it.  I think I had only tried lentils once before.  It tasted a lot like the Split Pea with Ham soup.  They are high in fiber, folks, so the next time you need a little boost in that direction, try lentils!  I bought the lentils at Sprouts and got the pretty greenish blue kind suggested in the recipe.  Also, I had some vegetable broth leftover from last week so I used that in place of some of the water.  Next time I will skip the sundried tomatoes as a garnish - I'm counting calories and didn't feel like it added much to the taste.  Great with cornbread, delicious a day later!


Monday, May 6, 2013

REJECTION WITH A SMILE...

Sometimes as a parent you just let them go ahead and do things even though you know it's a longshot.  Sometimes you even drive 12 hours and spend money to help them try out for competition television shows.  That's what I did this past weekend - drove to Nashville, Tennessee to support, keep my mouth shut and let the judges do the talking.  All in all, it was a good experience.  The judges were complimentary about alot of things, but ultimately told them they needed more time to develop their own sound as a group.  Not try to be any other group - just be themselves!  Good advice for all of us.  Being in the waiting room with other groups was pretty intimidating - you can imagine the judging on appearance going on between everyone.  Kind of a stressful situation if you ask me!  I can't wait to see if I recognize any of those people on the show this fall!

This was taken outside the audition just after they'd been rejected.  All smiles!  (Or maybe just their auto-response when the cameras come out) The spokesperson for the judges was so tactful and encouraging that the kids were ready to start practicing for next year's audition as soon as we left.  That is, after we hit the mall and had some dinner and went to the movies.  I was just glad there weren't any tears!  Just one of many interesting experiences to help these kids grow up a little more...