Saturday, September 26, 2009

Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder

Well. So. I was out jogging again and I saw my hawk. (As mentioned in a previous blog ) He circled me. I was just intrigued. He just really wanted to be my friend.

I merrily continued to jog and I saw another hawk. I thought... that's odd ... they are usually alone. And then I saw another one. And then I was just so amazed when I saw one huddled in a tree with a baby hawk. And they circled. And they hovered. I was just getting more popular than ever in the hawk kingdom. They sure weren't afraid to come around me anymore. Wow.

I had a lighter step to my jog and a smile on my face as I got home. I wanted to tell Paul all about my hawks and my oneness to nature.

But. Soooooooo

Turns out I don't have a hawk hovering over me as I jog at all. I do not have a majestic family of hawks who like me. No hello's from heaven from a hawk.

Paul told me I am being hovered by Vultures. At first I was like NO. No way. Uh uh. No. But, then I went and looked up vulture images and yes, my hawk is actually a vulture.

I love birds. All birds. But, vultures do not have a pleasant reputation. However, because I am an optimist I did find this wonderful tidbit: In Ancient Egypt the vulture was a symbol of motherhood and of lasting romantic love. :) I'll take that.

However, as it turns out, vultures have now moved into my jogging area. And they are not afraid to fly around low and in little packs. Therefore, I just so happen to be jogging in the middle of their new feeding ground.

Creepy yet fascinating to me. I do know that once they set up camp... there will be tons down there. This particular place I jog too is what I have, for years, called "Pooh Corner"... and I call it Pooh Corner because there is a Pooh movie where nobody can find Eeyore and they finally found him in the most beautiful place where he loved to go because he was alone and it was a happy, tranquil place. And this is how I feel about this place I jog to. Nobody is there. Its all nature, trees, the lake and all its sounds .... completely isolated. I have never seen anyone there. But, the vultures have now found it.

Fortunately I enjoy watching them. I am still intrigued and amazed at their vast wing span and the way they soar. I appreciate the fact that they are not a prey species but rather a species that cleans up the world and they are particularly useful here in the Texas heat and especially by the lake because the smell of dead fish aroma is rather nasty but now that the vultures are here, my little area will be nice and clean.

I guess I should just hope I never fall and hurt myself badly..... ???? Nahhh, they wouldn't.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Barbies, Daddies and Getting Lost

I was busy doing things and heard Annah chattering about with her Barbies , turned around and busted out in a giggle when I saw she had her Barbies all camped out on Paul...both shoulders occupied with Barbie and Ken and all their stuff.... What a sweet daddy! He was just sitting there watching a show as she was busy setting up house and playing.

And, in case I haven't blogged this... I have progressd to Will Shortz "Beware - Very Challenging" Sudoku puzzles... BUT, lest I sound too boastful.... today I got lost in Allen, my stomping ground for 20 years..... I got turned around and was blissfully heading the wrong way. I had a friend in my car and she must of thought I was completely missing a few fruit loops in my brain but I assured her that my brain does function indeed because I can do very challenging Sudoku puzzles... Then, as we were leaving the resteraunt, of course I started to walk out into another dining area rather than to the door to which she gently steered me the right way. I am just very direction dysfunctional and have been all my life but it became very obvious when I began to drive. I at times would attempt to go to Dallas and end up in Waco or even Oklahoma. Maybe it has a scientific name ... maybe others are like me? Maybe we can form some sort of group and meet for coffee once a month... but somewhere that we can all find.... there has to be others like me.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The Bread Eater

In my last blog, I mentioned I was baking flax seed, sunflower seed bread and I am now on my third loaf because I have been eating it for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The nutty, grainy taste with butter and honey... oh my goodness. This last batch I added Oat bran ...the batch before had Pumpkin seeds. Thats my problem. I like something and I will it for every meal for days and then I get so sick of it I won't have it for months.

I am thinking that these home baked loaves have everything I need to sustain life. :) Add honey for energy and I'm good to go.

Annah took this photo.... I wonder if I really look like that when I eat. Scary.

Thank you God, for my daily bread. Literally.

I was thinking today about the verses in Matthew 25 where Jesus is talking about Heaven and such and He said: For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’

“They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’

“He will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’

.....and as I stuff my face I think to myself...even though I do not purposely not give anyone food or clothing ...if I see a need I would give... right...but then I think of the world as a whole.. there are people starving as I sit and gnaw on my loaf of bread.... as I dip it in oil...people are starving. I see them on tv and in magazines. This really bothers me because I feel helpless but I am only helpless because I have chained myself here to this place... I have roots, family, things... why don't I just get up and go and get my hands dirty and for goodness sakes do something about world hunger?????

Tuesday, September 15, 2009


So today I am home baking. I am baking "Naught(y) Healthy Granola Bars"... Basically, I take healthy ingredients such as pecans, almonds, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, oats, cranberries, coconut and mix em with sweet condensed milk and then a cup of junk like chocolate chips of all varieties such as butterscotch chips and white chocolate... that makes this bar a little bit naughty but then I cut up chunks Reeses Peanut Butter Cups and in addition, shave the Reeses Peanut Butter Cups all over the top of it and then bake. Its like a total contradiction Granola bar... its not healthy but it doesn't fall off the food chain either... its full of high fiber ingredients, protein and raw natural food sources... so whats a girl to do? Do I eat it for breakfast or desert?

While my granola bars are baking, I have Flax Seed/Sunflower seed bread baking in my bread machine. This is probably truly a healthy sort of bread... it has the whole wheat flower and seeds and nuts etc... this can truly be labeled as a nutritious bread...nothing unhealthy about it really...

This kinda reminds me of my Christian walk... Am I fully nutritious and packed with goodness or do I mix in a little bit of 'junk' to get through my day ?

God help me get rid of the junk that gets to my spirit .... to turn off the tv when its just junk, violent or bad.... and to walk uprightly before you! Remind me to bypass those things that are not true, noble, right, pure or lovely for Your words says: "Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things." Help me to be careful about what I see, hear and say and to remember that in order to "Think about such things" I have to not be around, view or listen to junk to the best of my ability. Amen!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Hello from Heaven

I love birds. No, love doesn't truly describe how I feel about birds... I am in awe of them.

Living out here in the 'wild' I can usually only watch the birds from afar... they are very distrusting. The Blue Herrings, the Hawks, Vultures, Crows...all kinds of birds that I come up on in my walks and runs will take off the moment my presence is spotted and often before I see them. Often and suddenly the Herring will screech out of a tree always making me jump at its loud sounding panic war type cry or a tree of crows will suddenly fill the sky.

Many times I see a magnificent Hawk gliding through the air in the very far distance, with its amazing eyesight, if it even sees me step outside onto my path, it turns around and takes off another direction, even though I am far away and on the ground, it will take off away from me.

Yesterday was one of those days. I had so much stuff on my plate and around my plate and I didn't know how to process some of it...nor how to arrange the other half and some I just wanted to toss off but it would not of been prudent... so, there was my plate full with side dishes and stuff oozing off and I just stared at it unsure of how to make it all fit into my life and also make it fit emotionally... and to top all it off and in addition to my oozing plate, my little beloved 14 year old Pug, Pudge... is seemingly now in the end of her days. Her quality of life has just plummetted the past few days .... I hate to even think about the trip to the vet. I hand fed her her favorite cooked chicken today from my hand...the only way she will eat... I couldnt' get her to take her heart medication so I had to put it down her throat which I hated to do but if she doesn't take it she coughs and has lung congestion...anyways...

So as I went out in the misting rain yesterday with ... not exactly a heavy heart but my heart was just ... not knowing how to process everything .... I love Sudoku and its a mind puzzle where you eliminate numbers and make them all fit into a row, column and box ... I was thinking...what can I do I make all this stuff fit... but then I would just kinda freeze up and not process any of it and this was all just like a rock in my stomach and in my mind......

..... and as I was jogging in the mist I saw this Hawk... the Hawk was not to far away... he was flying off in front of me rather low... I had never seen one so close to me ever... and so low... out of just delight I was kinda silly and yelled out "hellooooooo" and began to um..... well...wave my arms at the low flying Hawk... and guess what? Instead of taking off, he slowed down. I kid you not. He not only slowed down but he stayed until as I was jogging he was directly over me!!!!!!!!!! close I could see him very well .... and in the moment of excitement I then began to panic because I thought... hey, maybe he has a big ego and thinks he can have me as dinner...maybe pickens are slim and I'm looking like a big rat.... so his close proximity and my amazement to it quickly turned to an eerie feeling... I mean seriously... could I take down a Hawk??? But I tossed out that moment of fear and focused on the fact that he was just so stunning and beautiful and CLOSE and it was very surreal and very beautiful and amazing and I just wanted to take it for what it seemed... a Hawk was souring over me as I jogged... very slowly and very low... as a hello from Heaven and yes, I said "HELLOOOO" back.... I said it many times...laughing, waving my arms like a lune and very delighted. I went back into the house feeling amazed, very much in awe and feeling very much hugged. :)

Thursday, September 10, 2009

"No one Built the Ark !!!"

One of my favorite Bible stories to read to Annah is regarding Noah building the Ark because like most children, she enjoys the pictures of the animals and the big boat.

The other day I went to Half Price Bookstore...their 20% off Labor Day Sale and got her a Wee sing Bible story CD. Upon listening to it she came blazing in the kitchen where I was attempting to make another pie... which did not turn out at all... but, as she bounded into the kitchen she proclaimed "MAMA NO ONE BUILT THE ARK!!!!!" I was puzzled of course... she was very adamant and wanted me to know that perhaps the story I had been telling her all this time was false. I said "Annah, Noah built the Ark"...she said "NO Mama, No One built the Ark"..... I asked her why she was saying such a thing and she proceeded to let me know that the CD I bought her was proclaiming that "No one built the Ark"... Ha! They were singing the song "Who built the ark... Noah Noah, Noah built the Ark" but...she heard it as "No one built the ark"... Is that cute or what????

She just continues to delight my heart ... being an 'old' mom is fun! Things are different than when I raised Alan and Tiffany... I was obviously 20 years younger and life was still being worked out ... I was focused as a young wife and mother and bills and all that stuff that comes with the territory of being young. Its very different raising her at this stage of life than it was 20 years ago and I am enjoying every minute of it. Things that may of stressed me out 20 years ago make me smile, knowingly this time around. Having already grown up 2, I feel calmer, I know whats around the corner, been there, done that, it will work out fine. God will be a lamp at her feet, a light to her path and with His Hand on her life she will grow into the beautiful lady He has planned for her to be. My job is to make sure she is safe, loved and that we raise her towards Him and do my part to which He has entrusted me but ultimately, God has already made her and she already is equipped with the skills, talents and giftings He has given her and He will complete that good work which he began in her. :)

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Look how He hath clothed the flowers of the field

Going through ones things after body death gives me a feeling of ... I don't even know...just... well, rummaging through their things... I don't know... but, this little pillow was made from my Great Auntie Fern's flower pattern. The beauty of this flower pattern is that she had hand drawn these petals and flowers onto paper.

Tiffany made this pillow using that pattern... it took her almost all day to hand stitch all the petals and stems, leaves, the butterfly.
She stitched on the Bible verse: "Look how He hath clothed the flowers of the field..."

This material on the back of this turtle Tiffany made is probably vintage... it was in a box of Auntie Fern's belongings along with a turtle pattern and Tiffany finished off cutting little octagons for the shell and then she used the pattern to make the turtle.
I think Auntie would smile at this little guy. :)

I personally do not have the patience for such tedious sewing labor. It is precisely why I make rag quilts... easy, quick, messy, difficult to mess up..... although I have. :)

And my darling little child begging to do laundry... she literally crawled up on the washer, took out all the clothes and one by one plopped them into the dryer. We have the OLD fashioned types...not the way wonderful front loaders... sigh... but Paul believes that if something still works, if it functions then we continue to use it. I believe it too and I'm frugal enough to go along with it and not nag but... sometimes I dream of front loaders... :)

Alan called me. He and Karmy and Elias are safe in sound at the YWAM base in Heredia. Alan tells me I would love it there........... Just what I was waiting to hear. :)

Sunday, September 6, 2009

20% Off

In case you didn't know and want to know... Yippeeeeee !!!!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Connecting My Dots

Sooooooo, I went to the College like I said I would. I sat down with an adviser and asked her to review all my courses...since 1986... and see if I have an Associates degree in ANYTHING. That was going to come first and then I was going to build on whatever I had to get a degree with the major emphasis on Spanish. I have been plugging away at teaching myself Spanish for awhile now... I use Rosetta Stone and Spanish for Gringos along with several online sources. Here is one of my favorites: 123TeachMeSpanish

The good news is that I have everything I need as the core for an Assoicates of Arts degree. I have 57 hours. I lack ONE class to have a 2 year degree... this does not include my other ooooodles of classes because I actually have enough for 2 Associate in E -Business Media if I took a couple more courses but that doesn't float my boat anymore so... I am sticking to the Associates of Art degree with an emphasis on Spanish. Next Semester I will take the one class I lack which is Drama or Art and then a Spanish class and I will be done with that.

Next I will move on to an actual connection of the major dots... something I can actually use if I need to as an interpreter or.... just to be able to communicate in Panama or Costa Rica when going to see Alan and Karmy and hopefully doing missions work in the jungle.

I LOVE this hut...I could live in this hut so happily. I suppose my real hope is that someday we can move to do missions work with YWAM... full time... like within 2 years even maybe. Alan and Karmy are moving here this coming Monday. where Karmy will do DTS training and Alan will be doing missions work. They are involved with the Nicoya Indians as the base is right there in the jungle.

So, as I wait.... I diligently pursue the Spanish language...hope to connect my dots with this degree stuff and then either God will allow us to move where I can communicate...and Paul is picking up some of the language too but his focus is on other things right now.. :)... so we can do that or, I will have doors that can open up into ministry here by having that sort of degree or certification. It is where my heart and passion is right now in this moment so its where I will walk.

It is a brand new journey and here I come! :)

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Oh My! Apple Pie!

I want to share this incredible, mouth watering Apple Pie recipe because it was SO easy, a few simple steps!

The crust is the best part...absolutely mouth watering and so easy to make. Incredibly easy and would be a hit at any social gathering... its a little more effort than picking up a pie at Kroger but, not much more effort... I mean you have to actually take the time to look over the pre-made pies, check out the prices and then compare the prices, pick it up... that takes effort... put it in your basket and walk around with it.... in this amount of time you could of already had your dough prepared and onto peeling the apples.

Here are the easy as Pie steps:

First...soften in the microwave (bout 20 seconds) 6 TBSP of butter...go ahead and use real butter.

Mix in the butter with 2 cups of flour, 1 tsp salt and 1 generous TBS sugar, 6 TBS shortening ( I use butter shortening) and cold or ice water. Just mix it all up with your hands or fork or whatever. It should be just right but if by some chance it is too goopy, add a little more flour. Form it into a ball, wrap it saran wrap or wax paper and put it in the fridge for at least 20 minutes. That entire process should of only taken you moments... including cleaning up as you went.

Peel about 5 medium or large apples...this is the longest part for me and the part I like least... I use the green ones as they are usually more tart... cut em up in slices and toss the core. Squeeze a wee bit of lemon juice over them as you go to keep them fresh while you cut up all the apples. It will prevent them from turning brown and gives them a good tangy taste.

Once they are peeled, pour 1 cup sugar, 2 TBS flour, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp salt and 1 TBS vinegar (Apple cider or white) and mix it all together with the apples.

Next..... cut your crust ball in two. Roll out one... use a little flour on your cutting board and rolling pin to prevent sticky.... roll it out and carefully put it in your pie plate... pour the apple mixture inside. Roll out the second flour ball and cover your pie with it...form the crust around it and poke a few holes in the top. Bake for about 50 - 60 minutes at 400 degrees.

And Wahlah!!!! Flaky, mouth watering Apple Pie that took only ...maybe 35 minutes to prepare... and while its baking your entire kitchen smells delicious.

Altogether for the crust and filling you will need the following:
5 apples
A little over 1 Cup sugar
A little over 2 Cups flour
1/2 tsp Cinnamon
1 TBS Vinegar
Lemon juice
6 TBS Butter and 6 TBS shortening
Cold water

I am as sure as I live that nothing is so near to me as God. God is nearer to me than I am to myself; my existence depends on the nearness and the presence of God.
... Meister Eckhart

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Blessings to Generations

Yesterday we went to my Great Auntie Fern's funeral. We took Annah with us because every funeral we have gone to we left her behind and then regretted it because we always felt she would of been just fine and she was. I really don't like crossing state lines...actually not even county lines without my "Sunshine" with me.

Anyways... as we participated in probably one of the most memorable, amazing funerals I have been too... what struck me most... besides the fact that I heard beautiful testimony about my Great Aunt that I didn't know before that touched me deeply... what also just stuck out was that that side of my family... well, they just ooze talent and gifts and beauty and any sort of life blessings you can grasp hold of... they possess it. You just can not even imagine the sounds of their voices singing... and the love of God and ministry work combined in that room from the family was breathtaking. As a matter of fact...I think every single family member is involved in church, missions, ministry work as their life work or at the very least, dedicating their life work to the Lord which as depicted in the beautiful painting above which was painted by my mom. My Great Auntie Fern was my mom's Aunt. Painting is a gift my mom discovered later on in life, well after my brother and I had flown the coop.

The above painting is one of the first paintings that revealed God's blessing and hand on her life. My mom, back in 2001, right of the time of 911, was beginning to be more tired than usual. It was beyond tired... exhaustion and while on a trip she was so exhausted she landed in the hospital and while in the hospital she painted this picture. It is called "Surprise Angel". When she painted it, she was painting the bridge in her backyard and after it was completed, you can see the angel in the picture over the bridge which she unknowingly painted into the picture while she lay in the hospital because the days that followed were traumatic for us as she suffered a complete major stroke. Words can't describe the horror of that time... she was also a computer professor and the Stroke left her very much paralyzed on one side as strokes often do. The prognosis looked rather grim ...she would never paint again nor type nor teach which was her passion.
But, God fully restored her body to 'work'. She continuted teaching and not only does she paint, she wins awards and is displayed in galleries, books etc...

However, back to my point... thats my mom's side of the family. Talent. Blessing. Oozing talent.

The painting above is called "Hope"... "Even though I walk through the Valley of the Shadow of Death, I shall fear no evil... Psalm 23:4"

While she paints mostly florals, I tend to like the non-floral paintings best. I think I just like flowers wild and blowing in the wind or sitting pretty in the sun as oppossed to being on canvas.

So, I was just blown away by the talent, the giftings and the blessings on that side of the family.
I'm not saying my dad's family is talentless or anything... but, you know, he traced his family tree back to the Vikings.... my mom's side is full of people who lived unto God and I believe the hand of God and His blessings have been pouring down into that side of the family for generations... maybe back to ... who knows... maybe one of the great men in the Bible that God promised to bless them and their offspring to come....

I honestly do not have any talent whatsoever. None. I think that Viking DNA dominated itself on me but the other side of the family poured into my children. Thank God! :) My son can sing like an angel and he is a missionary in Volcan... my daughter is so multi talented I can't even comprehend it and she blows my mind with her paintings and talents... and she has been a beautiful Godly person as long as I have known her. :) I surely can't say the same about myself. I came into the world fighting everything but, I am fully convinced that because of the blessings promised to 'that' side of the family.... God never let me out of his sight. He always pursued me diligently and aggressively... dusted me off and put me on the straight and narrow. I never wandered off to far...okay maybe I did..I was always one to question and buck every thing and it took me a long time to fully lay down my life and realize there is no other way. All other paths lead to destruction. Peace and Joy and Hope are only fully known when we are with God. Some people are able to just 'know' that truth. Others like myself have to obtain it through alot of self destruction and self inflicted stubborn misery. :)

"For God so loved the World.." John 3:16
Watermedia, 50 x 36