Thursday, January 15, 2015

Coffee and Dreams...

Hey friends! Wow, the New Year is FLYING!!  You know when you are about to have an empty nest (those sweet kids are flying away) and wonder what you will do with all of your time and you think you will just sit around and cry and watch the time tick past? Well- who ever said that is crazy!!
We are working and busy with church and some travels and many other fun things this life has to offer.

As the days fly by I realize more and more that the statement above and below in these pictures is very accurate. Coffee is pretty mandatory every day not just because of the caffeine content but also because it just tastes good and is warm and comforting. It's a thing.  But...more importantly, is the fact that I need Jesus a lot more than I need coffee and I need a whole lot of Him. Kind of like when I take the bread plate during communion and sometimes my thought is "I need to eat the whole cracker!" Not because of hunger of course, but because I am THAT thankful for the saving of my life and I want as much of Jesus as I can get into me!! Right?

This sweet little wall applique came in the mail today and I LOVE IT!
(The little boys in the photo on the bottom left? Love them more.)
Here is a secret dream of mine.
I guess the moment I let the cat out of the bag that it will not be a secret any more. Not sure why it is...
We have been doing a lot of thinking about what God is calling us to do for the rest of our lives.  I have no idea if this might be a part of His plan but I am talking to Him about it.

Wouldn't it be fun and gratifying to run a B and B especially in an old historic home with a acre of land around it? Part of the dream is to have a neighborhood garden and even possibly a work program and food for the needy program somehow. Just dreams, but we will see...
This beauty is up for sale. Oh, how fun it would be.
Dreeeeeeeeeeeam, dream, dream, dream...

P.S.- Registration for Camp Blue Haven youth camp is tonight at 9:00pm SHARP!If you want your kiddos to attend the best Christian Youth camp in the country- pop over and register tonight. You have to type fast and hit the go button quick. It is very competitive. Good luck and we are already praying for the new counselors and all of the campers that will cross that bridge this summer.

Jesus is better than anything the world offers!

Thursday, January 1, 2015

New Year- Bring It On!...

Yes- well, not too fat but the kind of uncomfortable fluffiness that is just irritating!!
So...this is where we decided to start our new 2015 year early this morning. Planet Fitness!!
I promise, I might be REALLY fat if I did not have a wonderful husband that encourages me to exercise.
I love how I feel after I workout. It's getting a little easier attitude wise after all these years. 
Thank goodness!! Fluffiness BE GONE!!
 We also started this day in a renewed effort to include this yummy green drink back into our routine daily.
Here though, is the part of the day I am looking forward to. :)
As my husband has been heard saying more than once- "It is stinkin-eyed-dog cold" here today. We are not having ice or snow like so many but rain and in the 30's is chilly. SO- it's soup time!! I found this recipe for Cream Cheese Chicken Chili a month or so ago and have made it several times since. LOVE IT!!
Here is my very, very lazy way of giving you this recipe (a photo!): 
One or two things about it- I have also made it on the stove top like above instead of the crock pot. When made this way for just a soup recipe add 4 cups of chicken broth.   Simmer for 45 minutes or so.  We just eat it with tortilla chips and call it a soup instead of chili. It would be great with cornbread too.

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Things to Ponder and Put Into Practice for 2015:

Such great ideas below to put into practice in our lives.
 Let's do this New Year right and let's do this together. 
Together is good!! 

I’ve got a river of life flowing within me;
It makes the lame to walk and the blind to see.
It opens prison doors, sets the captives free.

I’ve got a river of life flowing within me. Spring up, O well, within my spirit!
Rise up and tell, so all can hear it!
Spring up, O well, so I experience
That life abundantly.

I’ve got a river of life flowing within me;
It started gushing up when God set me free.
That I keep the flow is my only plea.
I’ve got a river of life springing within me.

Once I call His name there’s a flow within;
It turns me from my day, makes Him Lord again.
As my spirit burns, Satan cannot win.
Calling, “Oh Lord Jesus,” keeps the flow within.

These thoughts are from Ann Voskamp's blog called:

1. First things first: Word in. Work out. Work plan.
Open your eyes every morning and just do three first:

Word in: Get into God’s Word and let it get into you.
Work out: Work out. Even  5 minutes of moving is better than nothing. (baby steps! together we can do this!)
Work plan: Write out the work plan. And then work the plan.

2. “What a heart knows by heart is what a heart knows”
Write your memory verses on a sticky note, on a chalkboard, for your pocket.

Because when you are memorizing Scripture, quiet time with the Lord — becomes all the time. (Who doesn’t want that?)

3. Flame first.
Light a candle first thing in the morning.
So you remember: You are the light that is put on a stand so that it gives light to everyone in the house.

4. Your work is art: it needs a soundtrack.
Find your music.
Play your music.
Sing your music. This is profound.
Vincent van Gogh said: “When sailors have to move a heavy load or raise an anchor, they all sing together to keep them up and give them vim. That’s just what artists lack.”

5. Step on the Snake Before Breakfast
Before breakfast, crush one hard thing that is tempting you to think there are impossible things.
Before breakfast, crush that one thing and prove that all things are possible with God.

6. Stay in the pool
Michael Phelps said it in an interview: “You’ve just got to stay in the pool longer than others.”
Set the timer. Get in the pool. Stay in the pool. Do your work. Don’t get distracted. Don’t flit from one thing to another and back.
Don’t get out of the pool, don’t leave your work, until the timer goes. The way to win is to stay in the pool.

7. Clean a space = clear headspace
Keeping the workspace clean, clears your headspace to think.
Every night, after dinner, the timer gets set for 30 minutes. And we all just clean. Everybody. Every day. Yeah, so things get off kilter through the day — but the boat stays afloat if we all clear the decks for just 30 minutes each day.

8. Go Slow. Life Zone. Life isn’t an Emergency: It’s a gift.
Life isn’t an emergency. It’s a gift.
Life’s so extraordinary it warrants going slow, held in reverential awe.
Only the slow see their lives. Which makes it seem longer and richer.

9. Make Laughter Your Chocolate
The more you laugh, the longer you live. You can’t afford not to laugh more. Watch this. Make laughter your chocolate.

10. No songs without rhythm
Every song needs a rhythm; every week needs a routine. Tie certain tasks to a day or another activity.
Always memorize after breakfast or always make a double batch of soup on Saturday.
Your life makes music when you play a string of tasks always together.

11. On 25, Take 5
For every 25 minutes “in the pool” working – take 5 minutes off. Live by pomodoros. Really. Life-changing.

12. Unplug to plug into your purpose
Only if you want to plug into peace and purpose and your big picture – then unplug for certain hours everyday.
Constant connectivity effects productivity like a marijuana high.

13.Watch Your Nos & Your Yeses will take Care of Themselves
Everything you say yes to, you say no to something else.
Are your yeses forcing you to say no to what really want to say yes to?
Don’t have guilt over a no – because every no is saying a better yes.

14. Daily Stillness Appointment
When is your 5 minute stillness appointment everyday?
Write that midday time in stone. No cancellations allowed. For 5 minutes midday, be still and cease striving.
Know He is God and the day looks very different.
Slow down: You only pass by this way once.

15. If the Heaven’s Declare, get out there.
The whole of the sky and the world is speaking endlessly of His glory.
When you step outside and listen, your soul revives. You need that.
You really need one walk outside a day. Even it’s just out the door to get the mail or walk the dog around the block or a walk around the yard before you have to get in the car.

16. Work on your Wall before Noon
Like Nehemiah who worked on rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem, build your wall, building whatever God has uniquely called you to — a particular work project, a creative project, homeschooling, homemaking, a ministry. Here’s the deal, Self: Everyday before noon, work on your wall, laying down 3 stones before noon.
If you don’t intentionally work on your wall, the tyranny of the urgent can make your life a rubble heap.

17. Envision the End Goal
Like God gave Abraham a vision of the stars of the sky and told him he would have that many children, hang up a picture of the End Goal — so you always have a vision of what you envision.

18. Everyday, not Every Now and Then
Random acts of greatness pale in comparison to habitual acts of faithfulness.
It’s not what you do every now and then, but what you do everyday, that changes everything.
Do something at the same time everyday and you find yourself a new person.

19. Hard Stops
The only way to get anywhere safely is to make complete stops.
Make hard, complete stops at set times throughout the day to pray. Otherwise you’re risking a crash.
9, 12, 3, on the hour, might be times to set an a gentle, chime alarm for – and just stop and pray.
Praying at set times throughout the day is how both Jesus and the early church lived their days: God marking time.
20. The Holy, Happiness Habit {Count Gifts}
It’s not finally finding yourself joyful  — that lets you finally be grateful.
It’s being grateful that lets you finally be what you really want:  joyful.

Get this, really get this, because it’s deeply Biblical: Living Grateful is definitely 100% God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
All research says that giving thanks is guaranteed to make you 25% happier. Who. Doesn’t. Want. That.?

Write down 3 things a day you are grateful for. Hunt for His glory. Look for His beauty right in the midst of the ugly. Count 1000 gifts.
Start the year afresh with the 60 Day Devotional with fresh numbered pages to write out 1000 thousand gifts, that makes JOY POSSIBLE wherever we are.

Take the Joy Dare!  Make right where you are your happy place. [Counted  1000 gifts this year? Enter the draw for a new Nikon DSLR D90 camera next Monday on the blog…. And begin counting  1000 gifts today for next year’s draw of a new DSLR camera!]

21. Ebenezers for the Efforts
Mark little milestones! Celebrate! The little things!
A treat at the end of the day, end of the week, end of the project, end of the term.
Hang a bunting. Taste something sweet. Take a happy, thumbs up picture to mark your progress!
Make an album of a year, of the process, of the overcoming.

22. Father Affirmations
You need these everyday. Whisper them aloud, who you really are if you are IN Christ:

I am complete in Christ. Colossians 2:9-10
I have direct access to the throne of grace through Jesus Christ. Hebrews 4:14-16
I am free from condemnation. Romans 8:1-2
I am assured that God works for my good in all circumstances. Romans 8:28
I am free from any condemnation brought against me and I cannot be separated from the love of God. Romans 8:31-39
I am confident that God will complete the good work He started in me. Philippians 1:6
I have not been given a spirit of fear but of power, love and a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7

23. Breathe
Breathing in and breathing out like this will radically change the quality of your life. Breathe.

24. Hard, Bad Day? Hot Bath
An evening routine of a hot bath at the end of the hard and bad days?


25. Rest so you can have the rest of God.
Sleep is more than your friend — it’s your God-given fuel.
Tomorrow always begins with the night before, so turn in early so tomorrow can turn out well.

And A Grace Plan unfolds a bit of hope….

with the exhaling relief of daily being more grateful for what is than feeling guilty for what isn’t…

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

You and Me Forever...

My wonderful husband gave me this Francis Chan book for Christmas. Such profound thoughts even if you are not married.  I am just on the second chapter and am already so impressed with his and his wife Lisa's thoughts on marriage and our mission in life. I highly recommend! 

Christmas Photo Fun...

Best Bro's on earth...

 Christmas morning kids jump on the bed picture...
  These two are two peas in a pod...

 Sweet Ky...
 Love em...

 Warming his fanny by the fire...
 Looking off of McCoy mountain...
 What a stack of stockings- and they are not all up

 This was a toasty, wonderful place to sit...
 Twins and a photo bomber...
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Love This Grateful Jar Idea...

Saturday, December 20, 2014

New York City Trip...

Well, hello! We are on the countdown to Christmas as I know you are too.  It sounds so wonderful to be with friends and family and have good fellowship time. 

My sweet and kind father Christmas gifted the four of us with a trip to New York last weekend to see the sites and to attend Colt's game.  I had never been to NYC, and now looking back, I'm not sure why we never made this happen before. Well- money and the lack of is probably why, so thank you DBurl for a super trip, but more than thank you for being able to experience and see all that New York City offers I thank you for giving me precious time with these three women.  It was beyond good and fun and such a blessing. Best Christmas gift ever! Love you Daddy!
Things are CRAZY right now, trying to play catch up after an enchanting and wonderful trip and being sick for weeks before.

Here are some highlights of our trip. Hold come lots of pictures. :)

911 Memorial- very sad and heartbreaking.

 Statue of Liberty...

 We loved looking at the gorgeous homes...
Sweet Colt played so well until he took a hit that tweaked his neck again.
I believe they would have easily won that game had he been able to stay in.
Next year...

He's the real deal. Football player with heart, but even more importantly, he has a good heart that loves God above all else. Even football.

 Lights everywhere!
 Enchanting. Rockefeller center skating rink...
 Anyone for a carriage ride? SO fun...

 The Plaza hotel...
 Our carriage ride tour guide...
 The Today show.
 Times Square...

We saw the most wonderful Christmas show at Radio City Music Hall. What a surprise when at the end they read the story of Jesus' birth and had a Nativity scene with live animals and some real praise going on on that stage. Thank you God that Your name was exalted there in that auditorium, in that town. It blessed us. 
You just never know. I am thankful. 
Isn't this chandelier gorgeous? 
This was in the lobby of the Music Hall.

 We found the tree! We were looking for Kevin...

 Oh no to the subway...
Rachel with Jan and Debra in front of our Roosevelt lobby Christmas tree...
Rachel was a delight. She is fearless and beautiful and lovely inside and out.
She introduced us to Uber and took care of us for two days.
We love you sweet Rachel.
 The five of us out to eat...Stanton Social.
 The lobby of the Roosevelt Hotel...Lovely...

Thanks for viewing! See you after Christmas.
Have a Merry one!!