Saturday, March 29, 2014


Yesterday was kind of unusual...and we are gearing up for some more today!  Our college son asked us if some friends of his could use our house for filming (they are video production majors) and we said "sure."  We've let our son do this before but there were only a few people involved.  This time it's about 10 + teacher and lots of equipment!  Kinda crazy!  I think the teacher came to grade each one performing their part of the production.  Thankful for that...  We escaped for a few hours by going to a movie we knew nothing about.  Noah - if you're looking forward to a biblical account, forget it.

 Equipment everywhere
 Kids everywhere

My Easter decor they moved, mixed in with a few pizzas...time to escape!

We also attended the funeral of a woman from church who died suddenly of a heart attack.  I wish I had known her better but she and her husband had moved here from Shawnee a few years ago to be closer to their kids.  She was an actress, a respected teacher, and loving grandmother.  It was a very interesting service, with her spouse wearing a white tuxedo!  The family had asked everyone to wear bright Easter colors.  Her birthday was always around Easter and she died around Easter and believed in our resurrected Savior, Jesus Christ.  So appropriate.  Yesterday, the day of her funeral, was the day they had planned to leave on vacation for a European cruise.  Life happens and plans change.  It was a reminder to us to always be ready and we left encouraged to live our lives more like Him.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014



It took me a while to get into this book, but after a few chapters, I had to finish it to see what happened to the girls.  It's set in India, where arranged marriages are the norm. Two cousins end up on very different paths in their dysfunctional marriages.  It made me appreciate my parents, freedom, and the customs of dating and marriage here in our country more!


It wasn't what I expected - a girl on a 50 state tour in 6 months - basically you get to hear about how they kept cleaning out their car and kept throwing out more stuff they didn't need...  Well, she does talk a little about taking risks to gain something greater.  Wasn't my favorite of my reads lately.


This was a sweet story of the reading relationship between a librarian father and his daughter.  They had a "reading streak" going for years, not missing a night, and you see their relationship growing and changing through the years.  It's a great example for young parents on making reading a priority!  It has a list at the end of the book of the books they read.


A story of an "overcomer" and one I enjoyed.  It's about a destitute young mother with poor circumstances and some beautiful ladies in her life that gave her value and hope.  A good lesson for all of us striving to be an encourager to those in tough situations.

Sunday, March 23, 2014


Since we've been on a health kick, we just made these bars for the second time in just a few months.  Must mean they're good!  Really, it's one of the few healthy snacks I know with chocolate but no refined sugar in it.  I have to credit my sis-in-law for this recipe, although she called them Cliff bars.  I think they taste better than those, actually, so I have given them a new name:


6 c. uncooked quick-cooking oatmeal
6 T. ground flaxseed (flaxseed meal)
1 c. finely chopped dried fruit (raisins, craisins, cherries, whatever you like)
2 c. finely chopped nuts or seeds (we used peanuts, cashews, almonds, sunflower seeds)
1 c. honey or agave syrup
1 1/2 c. nut butter, any kind
1 T. vanilla
4 oz. unsweetened chocolate baking squares (we use Guittard dark)

Combine the oats, flaxseed meal, dried fruit and nuts in a large bowl.  In another bowl combine the honey, chocolate, and nut butter and heat in a microwave until melted and well blended 30 seconds at a time.  Stir in vanilla.  Add the melted ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix well.  Press into sheet cake pan lined with wax paper.  After chilling, cut into bars.  Store in refrigerator or freezer.

Thursday, March 20, 2014


A couple of months ago my husband mentioned that he would be attending a conference in Orlando, Florida.  As it happens it was our Spring Break, so we (myself and the boys) were fortunate to join him.  I realized it might be one of the last times we would spend a school vacation with the boys since my oldest son is graduating from college.  I didn't do a bit of planning this time, even though it's been 13 years since we'd been to Disney World as a family.  I've just been so busy with other things!  I think I also knew you can't make an 18 and 22 year old do hardly anything - turned out just fine.

Another reason the boys wanted to go:  both of the boys have friends living in/near Orlando!  Of course they wanted to see them!  One is a character at DW and another a student at Rollins College in Winter Park.  They got to see both of them, and in fact our DW friend has a lot of benefits let's say...and we enjoyed them while Dad went to his meetings.

Since we were getting in free, we weren't able to get Fast passes, but it was still fun!  (I had to keep reminding myself that as the Fastpass people ran by us as we waited and waited in lines) We also ate pretty well, which is something we never would do otherwise!  In the past we would eat cheap after paying so much for the tickets.  So we just basically enjoyed the parks slowly, waited a while on some of the more popular rides, and had a great time.  Our friend was really into the parades and shows, while we probably would've concentrated on rides.  Funny how letting someone else show you around changes your perspective.  But we loved it, and just enjoyed the parks with no real agenda other than riding a few rides and seeing the new parade.
 The boys and their goofy friend!

The hubs got to join us for a little bit!  We loved Toy Story Mania!

New parade!

 Our friend had to "work" in the afternoon, so we went by and visited him!  

At Epcot the Flower & Garden Festival was going on and the topiaries were gorgeous!

The boys were so much fun and I was glad they let me hang around with them!

One night the hubs took us to Celebration, FL to eat and look around.  It's a Disney planned community that is gorgeous but the neighborhoods feel a little "stepfordish."  Personally I never saw but a little of that creepy movie, but the neighborhoods do seem a little too clean and unreal...

The last day we visited the boys' friend who goes to Rollins College in nearby Winter Park, FL.  It just happened to be his birthday so we treated him and ate on Park Ave. - a great area with shops and restaurants near campus.  It was a gorgeous campus with palm trees and Italian architecture.  I'm not sure how anybody gets studying done in such a cool atmosphere...

Saturday, March 15, 2014


Well the year has just wrapped up for my Thursday morning Bible study!  This school year we studied three short books:  Philippians, Ruth, and Esther.  It was a good study and I'm amazed when you think you know a Bible story what more you can learn!  We ended our year with a luncheon where every group decorates their own table in any way they choose...

This is most of my Bible study group this year.  After studying Ruth & Esther, I declared our table "Rustic Elegance," with thoughts of Ruth the laborer and Esther the queen.

I was excited to use the doilies on top of the burlap.  They were donated to our Women's Fellowship Committee at church by a woman whose mother had made lots of doilies.  When her mother passed she didn't want to get rid of them but she had way too many, so she asked me if the church could use them.    I made place cards for everyone with a verse from a song on them and little doily flowers from Hobby Lobby.

This hot pink and black table was a large group and their leader made little framed monograms for each lady in the group at their place settings. 

 This table was about royalty (Esther) using a purple and gold theme.  The framed verse challenges us as women to "wherever God has placed you to be useful for Him!"

Pop of green table

             The "Ruth" table and the "Esther" table!

 Love this navy and orange color scheme!

 Easter table!  Lots of fun color!

The wheat table (Ruth)

Persian treasures (Esther) table

Wednesday, March 12, 2014


Watching my son on stage this time was very surreal.  It was wonderful but didn't seem like it was him!  I was watching a grown man this time.  A preacher man who was married with a troubled teenager.  He was struggling with his own grief and for once in his life didn't know what to do about a tough situation in his life, until he cried, "HEAVEN HELP ME."  It was a beautiful song.

It was a wonderful message for anyone who might be struggling making decisions.  Footloose is a show not only about teenagers but also about parents.  I hope my son got some insights as he played this role!

Treasuring these moments in my heart...