God's Word for Today

Friday, October 29, 2010

Flashback Friday ~ To Trick or Treat…that is the question?

It’s all about Halloween this week.

I don't answer all the question and I did a bit of rearranging but here’s my Flashback Friday…Trick or Treat y’all!

What  was Halloween like when you were growing up?

We did the traditional trick or treating. When we were little my mom would walk with us but when we got a bit older we would make trick or treat plans with friends and map out our strategy to make sure were hit all the best neighborhoods to ensure the biggest bang for our Halloween buck!

Halloween was a big treat that we always looked forward to. The best part was dumping out my bag and then sorting through the can at the end of the night and then seeing how long I could make the candy last.

Have you ever bobbed for apples or been on a hayride?

When my daughter was little she saw something on television about bobbing for apples. For several years after that she wanted to bob for apple on her birthday. Her birthday is in the spring. I am not sure why apple bobbing is traditionally considered a fall activity, I guess with fall being the harvest time for apples, but in the mind of a 11 year old apple bobbing can happen at any time of the year.

And it did for several years at birthday parties :)

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For they Hayride, me and Muffinhead and Muffinhead’s mom had a lovely hayride at the fall Festival hosted by our church this past Sunday.

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Yes, she is the cutes little bumblebee I have ever seen!

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What types of costumes did you wear? Were they store-bought or homemade? Were there stipulations regarding costumes?

The only stipulation was that it was almost always homemade. We would scour our closets and mom’s remnant drawer and throw together whatever costume we could. I don't remember ever getting a store bought costume until I was a teenager and could pay for it myself.

Did you carve a jack-o-lantern?

Yea! That was the fun part. Since pumpkins were relatively inexpensive it was one of the activities that we did do with regularity. I remember making sketches and trying to come up with really scary or different designs for the jack-o-lantern each year.

How are your children's experiences similar or different to yours?

I think I may have shard my opinion about this previously. If there was such a thing as a parental do over I think one of them would be the observance of Halloween. I know that the foundation of Halloween, All Hallows Eve is based on the observance of All Saint’s Day and has it’s roots in Christianity. It would be wonderful if it had stayed that way, however as most things go in the secular world it very quickly moved away for what it was supposed to be and morphed into something that has no resemblance to what it was originally intended to be.

Don’t get me wrong, I love fall festival, pumpkin patches, trips to the mountains, apple cider, hay rides, corn maze’s and face painting. All of those things a wonderful and great fun.

My problem with Halloween is the very negative and evil overtones that get placed upon it. The evil one, in my opinion gets enough attention on a daily basis, we do not need to set aside a day to honor those scary and dark  attributes that most Christians struggle to avoid and remove from their life.

Plus I think it send the wrong message.

When I see sweet little children dressed up like the devil walking around with their little pitch forks and spiky tails it just grieves my heart. If you were the mom of a teen who regularly pushed the envelope as I was well it was a yearly battle that I eventually just threw in the towel on. The reoccurring themes of the grim reaper, slasher, scream or other blood and guts costumes were very unpleasant. It disturbed my heart back them and it bothers me now.

Several years ago we began to phase out the observance of Halloween by going to other functions such as our church fall festive or the other functions put on by local churches. Lots of churches in the area hosted a trunk or treat. This allowed my daughter to participate in trick or treating but also gave us some measure of control, not to mention it saved the angst of the aftermath as I would sort thought the candy and toss out those I felt were just not worth the risk.

This last point I think is one of the biggest differences. I remember hearing about Halloween candy being tampered with but I really didn't remember my mom sorting through my candy. When my children hit the streets for Halloween, it was a hard and fast rule that there was to be no consuming any candy during trick or treating unless it was from a select few of our neighbors. They knew who these people were and we would recite the list to make sure they understood who was safe and who was not.

Now since my son is out on his own and my DD is well past the age of actually wanting to go trick or treating we have settled into the habit of going out to dinner or catching a movie so we are away from the house during the majority of the trick or treating activity. If we do get home and there are still a few lingerers we just keep the porch light off and usually the kids just pass right by.

And the most important question: Do you like candy corn?

YES! What’s not to like?

What is your favorite (and least favorite!) Halloween candy?

Favorite would have to be the snack size snicker bar, least favorite would be, well all those folks out there who think peppermint candy and any other hard candy wrapped in cellophane is an appropriate Halloween treat, well let me set the record straight. If I can unwrap it and re wrap it then it gets immediate tossed into the trash. Not to mention it just isn't what kids or anybody wants to find in their trick or treat sack.

butterscotch,butterscotch candies,butterscotch candy,candies,candy,confections,dining,food,hard candies,hard candy,Photographs,sweets

Chocolate…..Its what everybody want in there sack!!!

 

Well that’s it for me for this Flashback Friday, for more Trick or Treating fun y’all head over to Mocha with Linda and link up!

If you are hitting the sidewalks on Sunday y’all be careful out there and have fun!

Blessings

R

Thursday, October 28, 2010

What’s for Breakfast…and the question I ask myself on a regular basis…How hard could it be?

One of the television shows on Food Network I really enjoy is “The Best Thing I Ever Ate”. If you have never seen this show they have all the network chef’s sharing the best food they ever ate and what restaurant they got it at. Well I was watching one episode and they did a piece these English Muffins (Click on the link to see the video clip)  and I began to think….How Hard Could it Be?

The idea of actually making an English muffin from scratch had never even crossed my mind. It is one of those things that you just never think of trying to make in your own kitchen, or at least I never thought of trying to make it from scratch anyway. Well I watched this piece on English muffins and I thought I would give it a go.

I did a few minutes of internet research and found an Alton Brown recipe that I thought looked doable. I am not sure if I should label this recipe as baking or cooking. Technically I never turned on my oven so It cant be baking but since it is bread, well I’m conflicted. Baking…cooking let's just flip a coin shall we!

It was a very simple recipe of powdered milk, flour, water, salt, sugar, a bit of yeast, bla, bla, bla….

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The batter is very moist and sticky almost the consistency of a very thick pancake batter. Once all the ingredients are assembled the dough needs to proof for about 30 minutes to an hour. The recipe said 30 minutes but I let mine sit for about an hour.

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It more than doubles in size!

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After the dough has finished proofing a vey small amount of salt gets mixed back in and the dough is stirred down. Now it is ready to begin making your English Muffins.

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Alton Brow’s makes the suggestion of using tuna fish cans, well not being a tuna lover I opted for pineapple rings and they seemed to be a passable substitute.

With my electric skillet, I tried a small batch on 300 and I thought that was a bit to hot so I lowered the temp to 250 and I liked that one a bit better. Scoop two scoops of dough into each metal ring and cover with a flat lid or cookie sheet cover and cook for 3 to 4 minutes.

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After 3 minutes flip and continue cooking on the other side.

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Cool on wire rack.

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Split with fork and toast.

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Well after making two batches of these I have decided that the appeal of making something from scratch may have worn off a bit.

So how hard could it be?

Well it was really not that hard, however I think it may be one of those thing that I will only do from time to time.

Also I will say that I may see if I can find some real English Muffins rings. I found the metal rings/cans to be to tall. I think maybe traditional English Muffin rings would be wider and not as tall as a tuna/pineapple can and might be a bit easier to handle. 

Well any way that’s the scoop for Homemade English Muffins!

On a closing note I will say that I am totally bummed about missing The Model Bakery where those English Muffins were profiled. They looked totally amazing, If I ever find myself back in Napa valley again I will make sure I give them a visit! I mean seriously we drove right through St. Helena while we were exploring Napa Valley, live and learn…..

Let me know if you give it a go and what you think of the process!

(Edit) As Patrice mentioned, I got so wrapped up in laying out the process step by step that I completely forgot to tell y’all how they tasted. They were good. They were a bit more bready that normal English Muffins and I thought they had plenty of nooks end crannies in them. All in all I was very pleased with the taste. They were nice and crispy when they were toasted and they held up to a nice dollop of Apple Butter. The had good flavor even just toasted and lightly buttered. So although a bit labor intensive they were very good!

Maybe I’ll try cinnamon & raisin next time??????

 

Blessings

R

Monday, October 25, 2010

Why is it…

Waking up to a rousing thunderstorm snug in my bed is wonderful.

Listening to the rain beat again my sound roof is amazing.

While I sit and drink my first cup of coffee and have my prayer time I listen to the rain.

Yes Lord I hear you!

A thought wanders through.

Why is it so amazing to sit and listen to the rain?

Then another question seeps in.

Why is the thought of having to go out to the grocery store in that same rain such a chore?

What’s the common denominator?

Is it the gift of a morning thunderstorm or is it my attitude?

The rain has not changed but my thinking on how I approach the gift has.

I was also reminded this morning that for as much as this gift comforts me there are others for whom thunderstorms cause great distress.

Lord please bring comfort to them.

For “L” from “R”

 

Blessings

R

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Project 365 ~ Week 43

Well I only took pictures two day this week, yea I know kinda pathetic!

I have a really good reason for my lack of photographic documentation though.

A few weeks ago I started reading Francine Rivers “Mark of the Lion” series. Well I got so engrossed in these books I spent almost every spare minute with my nose stuck between the covers of these three books. I finally finished the last book on Saturday after we got back from our excursion up to the mountains.

If you are looking for a great read then I would highly recommend this series. It is absolutely phenomenal. I simply could not put it down. It is all about the first generation Christians after the fall of Jerusalem and the destruction of the temple. It was fascinating to read about the lives of those first generation Christian's as well as get a glimpse of what life was like for all those who laid the foundation for our faith. It’s a strictly fictional book but the premise is real and a lot of real biblical characters are mentioned and there are a few key New Testament characters that make an appearance in this story line as well

Loved it! Y’all if you get the chance give it a read you will not regret it!

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I pulled myself away for my literary coma long enough to go out to the store for a few hours.

Friday, October 22, I had to make a trip to Hobby Lobby for some more paint. I am contemplating painting number two and I need to replenish mu supplies before I hit the canvas again.

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I made my usual trip over to the H Mart for some produce. I came home with some wonderful strawberries, bananas, pineapple and some pears that were just amazing.

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I picked up some great salmon which I seared off in my cast iron skillet with some garlic, parsley and a tiny bit of butter. Sorry no pictures but it was really good.

Remember those pineapple cans?

Well I put them to good use ands made my first attempt at English Muffins. I have a post coming about the process for those of you who may want to ask the tried and true Be still and Know question “How hard could it be?”

Not really that hard as it tunes out so keep your eyes on your blog roll for the how to on English Muffins. I still think the recipe needs a bit of tweaking but overall I was pleased with my first attempt!

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Saturday, October 23, We loaded the van, the family and the camera and my back pack and headed up to the  North Georgia mountains. We went to Amicalola Falls State Park.

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It wasn’t at it full peak yet but we looked at our schedule and realized that this weekend was our widow of opportunity if we were going to get a glimpse of the fall color. Sadly I think everyone one else with in a hundred mile radius was also out taking in all the fall gorgeousness as well, but we persevered through ht limited parking and in spite of the throngs of people had a wonderful time. Are the day of finding a quiet moment out in God’s creation gone? I had to wonder how hard it really is to find a moment to really appreciate all the wonder his creation has to offer in solitude?

It was amazing…crowded but still amazing!

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This is the view from the top of the falls!

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This is the view from he bottom of the falls.

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On the way home we stopped for an early dinner at O'Charlie's. I had their wonderful Loaded Potato soup and the Black & Blue Steak salad.

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And then one of there mini deserts, the Caramel Pie. It was very small but so rich that I had to bring half of it home with me.

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Well that’s it for me for this week. For more 365 fun y’all head over to Sara’s and link up!

Blessings

R

Friday, October 22, 2010

Flashback Friday ~ One Day at a Time

Y’all remember that television show from back in the day called ‘One Day at a Time” about a single mom raising two daughters? I used to watch that show all the time. Looking back on it I always wondered why I tortured myself every week. I really hated that show but I still watched it. I remember thinking about how I would have loved to have been as lucky as those two girls in that show. They always had nice pretty cloths and they lived in a really cool apartment. My childish brain could not distinguish between the story line that they manufactured for purely entertainment value, all I saw was that the life that this single mom and her two daughters lived was so very different from the life I lived every day.

How was your family structured when you were growing up?

I don't really have any memories of before the divorce. I have very faint memories of all of us living under the same roof but they are very fleeting and they fade in and out. Basically for as long as I can remember it was just my mom, me and my little sister.

If your parents divorced, did you go back and forth between them?

Sadly we saw very little of my father. He left when I was very young, in the second or third grade and in the years that followed we maybe saw him less than a dozen times. I have a few memories of going to visit him on a summer vacation from school, but what I remember most is that I did not want to go and my mom made us go. I remember having conversations with my mom on the phone and telling her about how nice his house was in comparison to ours and how nice his car was in comparison to the one my mom drove. I remember that the cans in the kitchen pantry had real labels on them and they had snack foods like potato chips and name brand cereal, things we NEVER had in our kitchen pantry!

Whether divorced or widowed, did your parent remarry?

My dad remarried twice. I will share that I did not like his second wife at all, I am not sure if I was predisposed to dislike her as she was the same woman that he spent time with, if ya know what I mean, while he was married to my mom! Oh yes he did!

Any way they lived in Florida and it was her house that they eventually moved into and it was there that we went to visit a few times. I just did not like her and I tried to like her but sadly we never formed more that a tolerance for each other. I don't know how long that marriage lasted but it ended in divorce and my father eventually remarried a third time. It was this third marriage that effected the biggest change. When his soon to be wife found out that he had two children that he never even spoke to she encouraged him to begin to reach out to us. I would like to say that over the years our relationship has been restored but in reality it is still is a bit tenuous. I no longer hold anger and animosity toward his abandonment of us as children but there are massive chasms in my relationship with him that I find very difficult to overcome.

My mom has remained single all these long years and I often wonder if she will ever find anyone to spend time with. She learned how to take care of herself. I think when you go for so long being the soul provider and having to do everything all by yourself you find that it is just easier to maintain that self sufficiency rather that try to adjust to sharing your life with someone else.

Was yours a multi-generational household with grandparents living with you?

My grandparent lived all the way up in Ohio, we saw very little of them as well, we did get to go to see them as often as Mom could arrange it.

Did your mom work outside the home, and if so, was it full-time or part-time?

My father was not a provider. He did not send child support nor did he contribute any anyway to our care. My mom had to work outside the home. In fact she juggles as many as three of sometimes four jobs to keep food on the table and a roof over our head.

Did your parents believe in child labor?! That is, how structured were chores?

Out of sheer necessity the wealth of the chores was spread between all three of us. I remember having a note wating for me on the kitchen table when I got home from school with instruction on what temp to pre heat the oven and then a few step by step instruction on when to do things to get supper started. As I got older I was well versed in the operation of the coin washer and dryer down at the Laundromat in our apartment complex. Many of the apartment complexes we lived in were equipped with the bare essentials so washing the dishes by hand was a nightly chore. We helped with household chores but if memory served my mom was not a neat nick so she was never obsessive about keeping the apartment clean.

Were your parents do-it-yourself-ers or did they hire people for repairs, painting, etc.?

Hiring handymen would imply that you had money to pay them to do what ever you needed to have fixed. My mom was the queen of jerry-rigging, if something broke or was in need of repair she would find some way to hold it together with glue, a bent coat hanger or duct tape.

Is your current marriage/family structure similar to the way you were raised? What do you do differently than you did then?

All I can say is “Praise Jesus!” that things in my life now are remarkably different from what I experience growing up. I saw the hardship my mom faced because of a failed marriage and I was determined not make the same mistakes. There were several times that my marriage hit a few very shaky and rough patches but with determination, love, communication, and a genuine desire to try to work things out we managed to walk through all the valleys in our marriage.

We will celebrate our 29 anniversary next May!

Of course the other huge difference is the foundation of Christ. When I think of the things that could have been different for us had we had a firm foundation all those years ago it makes me very sad. Thankfully after the birth of our first child we began the slow process of turning our lives over to Christ and the impact it has made in our lives has been remarkable.

Both of my children have been raised in a two parent home, both of my children walked through the door each afternoon from school and were welcomed by their mom, both of my children were tucked into bed by both of there parents each night and both of my children have an example of what a good marriage looks like when the begin looking for those qualities for their own husbands and wives.

I guess when all is said and done, there are many things I would have loved to have changed about my childhood. The reality is that it is life's trials that make us what we are. We can not appreciate the refiners fire until we are on the other side of it. Should children have to experience that refiners fire? Well in a perfect world the answer should be NO! But we do not live in a perfect world and we make the best of the situation we have been given or we try to make the best of them. The goal is to learn from the mistakes and to try to make the next generation better than the one before it!  

Well as always Linda has asked some thought provoking questions. Sometime looking back is necessary. If we don't look back then we can’t see where we have been, nor can we learn from the mistakes made along the way.  

For more Flashback Friday y’all head over to Mocha with Linda and link up!

 

Blessings

R

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Project 365 ~ Week 42

I am extremely late to the 365 party today!

I will preface my week by telling a short story.

Back in 1998 myself and 11 others in our congregation began the very first training class of Stephen Ministry. If you are unfamiliar with what Stephen Ministry is you can click on the link to get more information about all this ministry entails. To sum it up it is a caring ministry set up to help those in need in the congregations well as surrounding community. Stephen Ministers are trained individuals who walk with those who are grieving, sick or suffering from the many emotional troubles people find themselves in. It is a one on one support system until they no longer require that support.

One of our dear friends who trained along with the original 12 was called home to Jesus on Friday. We gather today to celebrate his life this afternoon. You can know that the end is near, you can be prepaid for the passing, you can even wish for it because you know that the suffering in the physical body will finally be over. However once you receive the new then it turns into an ache in your heart not for the lost loved one but for those who are left behind. For his beloved wife of 53 years, for his grandchildren and great grandchildren, for his siblings and for all of us, his church family. We gathered today to remember Jim.

He made me laugh, he walked with all of us as we entered into the new territory of becoming Stephen Ministers and in the journey we became more than friends we became family members.

Tonight I am remembering my dear friend with sadness because he will be dearly missed, but I am also remembering with such great comfort knowing that the body that slowly failed him has been restored and he is finally at rest and in perfect peace with His Father in heaven.

If that was not enough to well up the remembrance in my heart it was also one of those sad milestones that happen in the grieving process. Some of you may remember reading a previous post of mine about a sweet wonderful family friend, more like one of my own children really, well Saturday would have been his 14 birthday. So this weekend has been filled with a bitter sweet mix of remembrances for me.

It was good to have something fun and frivolous to shift my focus on through out the week as you will see.

Having poured out my sad teacup of remembering I plunge into this weeks project 365.

A hint before viewing, one of the tools I use to distract myself is cooking so there are quite a few food shot this week.

No pictures on Sunday, October 10

Monday, October 11

Several weeks ago I purged the veggie patch of all the spent plants. The only remaining plants were my green pepper plant and my JalapeƱo plant. After a few nice rain storms and the benefit of a good soaking the other day when the Hubs watered that back yard I went outside on Sunday and was shocked at the bounty. I couldn't get my tomato or cucumber to take root in my little patch of dirt but leave the green peppers untended a forget about them and look what happens.

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I dashed out to the the store for supplies and made a nice batch of pepper jelly.

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I’m set for the holiday season party season as I now have 8 - 1/2 pint jars of pepper jelly that are just the right size for horse devours, cream cheese and good cracker and some nice sweet hot pepper jelly….YUM! 

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No pictures to day either….Tuesday, October 12

Wednesday, October 13

We did a practice run on the Homecoming hair!

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Thursday, October 14

Pineapple Upside Down Cake, more cooking distraction but there was an ulterior motive. I needed the cans.

One of the hubs favorite things for breakfast are English Muffins. I found a recipe for them and they made a suggestion to use empty tuna fish cans as the muffin rings, well not begin a tuna lover I was in search for a similarly shaped can at the grocery store the other day and came home with canned pineapple rings. Hmmm there may be some English Muffin pictures in next weeks 363…

It was really good. The preparation took my mind of the approaching day of Aubrey birthday not to mention it was very tasty as well.

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Friday, October 15

Y’all I was working real hard on distraction myself as you can see.

I met my small group for dinner on Tuesday evening at Panera. I had their Mediterranean Veggie Sandwich and it is served on Tomato Basil bread. It was so good. I got to thinking…how hard can it be?

Well after a few minutes research on the internet I can up with a few different recipes and then I began to formulate a recipe for my own version of Tomato Basil Sourdough bread. It was good but I think there is still a bit of tweaking need on the recipe.

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Saturday, October 16

We were in prime homecoming mode all day on Saturday.

It began with a trip to the Nail salon. The DD got the full mani-pedi. I figured since I was already there I through caution to the wind as well as my credit card and hopped in the adjacent chair and enjoyed myself immensely as my tired tootsies were treated to a few minutes of pampering.

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A little Before and After action going on…

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I’m quoting…”I’m real happy with my hair!”

Thanks skoots1mom for the loan of the hot rollers what would we do with out you! The dress, the rollers….saved me a boatload of $$$$$!

Well it was an emotional charged week for me, remembering two people that I loved dearly! But loss and remembering loved ones is all part of life.

For more Project 364 y’all head over to Sara’s and link up.

I will pop over tomorrow and give your 365 a look tomorrow.

Blessings to you all y'all!

Now go hug someone you love and remember someone one who has gone home to Jesus!

R

Friday, October 15, 2010

Flashback Friday ~ A Penny Saved is a Penny Earned

I almost passed on this one, but then I got down to the last couple of questions and decided to give it a go.

Coming from a background of being severely financially challenge growing up I will try to refrain from whining and complaining about how much we did not have growing up. I remember things like my mom having to go to the local food pantry and getting those cans with the plain white labels and bold green type on them. We from time to time lived in subsidized apartment complexes. Money was a very difficult concept for me growing up because we never had it and it seemed that everyone else did. Isn’t it strange how children perceive things. Many people grow up in economically challenging situations but as a child in my limited vision I could only see what directly impacted me.  

I am thankful as an adult I have learned to look at things with much more maturity and with a broader scope.  

For reason that are obvious, being so financially challenged, I will skip to the last few questions.  

How old were you when you got your first checking account or credit card?

When I was old enough to get an after school job aside from baby sitting I was first in line to fill out an employment application. I worked at several fast food establishment as well as a few restaurants as a waitress or hostess. As soon as I had my own transportation I was able to work after school and on weekends. I took great pleasure in having my own money that I could spend anyway I wanted to. I had my first checking account when I was in high school. I remember struggling to understand the concepts of how to balance it and how to set things up to avoid bouncing a check. I also remember being totally freaked out the first time I bounced a really it was more like for or five check. REALITY CHECK IN A MAJOR WAY!

As a teenage I was not much of a saver. After growing up in our circumstances I seized the opportunity of finally being in a position to purchase something all on my own. I did not have to ask my mom and then be told that she did not have the money to get whatever it was that I wanted.

I remember being so excited the first time I was able to go to the drug store and buy my own make up. The thrill of getting it home from the store and opening up all the packages and lining them up on the bathroom counter and just looking at it. 

When I graduated high school and got my first real full time job I had a few very small credit cards. I had a gas card and then I had Macy’s card. This in hindsight was probably not the best idea, but again I fall back on the fact that for so long I had gone wanting. When I got in a situation where I could afford to buy the occasional blouse or pair of jeans I found myself yielding to the desire to purchase whatever I wanted.

Thankful it never got totally out of control and after a while the appeal of shopping wore off over not having an outstanding balances every month.  

How has the way you were raised impacted your handling of financial issues today?

Today it is a totally different ball game. Along with growing up under extreme financial challenges, the first 10 or so years of my marriage we faced some very difficult financial situations as well. We were forced to learn how to live on a very meager budget and over the years have really learned how to be good stewards with our money.

Ever had a $50.00 grocery budged…for one month? We never once went hungry, but I learned how to stretch a pound of hamburger meat to almost two pounds and I learned every possible way to utilize spaghetti.

It took us many years to step up to the concept of tithing, but I am so grateful that we have learned that valuable lesson. When we learned how to set aside a portion of the financial blessings we had receive then it became so much easier to place so many other things in their proper perspective. We don’t regret taking the step up to tithing and God has taught us so many lessons on the difference between what we need verses what we want.

Realistically who wouldn't want to have pile of cash tucked away for a rainy day. In this economy I am thankful that we have a sound roof over our head, that my husbands has a good job that keeps food on the table. I do find myself stressing a bit over the very sad state of our retirement but I am reminded that I must continue to trust in the Lord for discernment and for guidance.

Each day we make decisions on how to spend our money and each day we can either choose to put money in the saving or plan a trip to…. or go shopping…or support someone on the mission field, it is all a choice. Sometime we put the money aside for a much needed vacation and other days it goes into savings or off to support some person stepping out on the mission field for the very first time.

Learning how to be financially responsible is a very difficult thing. I have many friends who are suffering through foreclosure’s or bankruptcy issues right now so I am thankful for what we have and for where we are.  

I have learned some very difficult lesson and we have paid our fair share of financial dues. From all the toils and trouble we have experienced here are a few thing is have learned.

  • You can’t get blood out of a turnip.
  • Hospital bills will eventually get paid off even if you can only pay $3.00 each month.
  • Bill collectors don’t like it when you tell them you will be praying for them.
  • $40.00 each pay period makes for a good Christmas fund and if you need more than that then your probably spending too much!
  • Out of necessity you can live on Spaghetti and rice and beans.
  • Credit cards are to be used like cash, if you don't have the money to buy it then you shouldn’t be loading it in the back of your car.
  • 90 day is not the same as cash and Cable is not a necessary expense. 

I put a big o’l bowl of red beans and rice on the table for dinner the other night, it was not out of necessity thankfully. Beans and rice may be very economical but they are also very good.

My financial struggles were not very fun and at times they brought many many many tearful evenings into my life as I worried about how to pay for this bill or that bill but they also taught me a very valuable lesson.

We don't live beyond our means and now when the entire county seems to spiraling out of financial control we still have a home we can afford, groceries in our pantry and money to keep the power on and the water running.

Anything beyond that is gravy!

Praise Jesus!

Luke 12:24
Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds.

For more Flashback Friday head over to Mocha with Linda and link up!

 

Blessings Y’all

R

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Random Dozen

It’s that time again!

Time to dive right in with all the wonderful randomness!!!!!

1. Is there a word which you initially mispronounced? Were the circumstances in which you made the faux pas embarrassing? By the way, that's not "foax pass." (I know you know that. Just jokin' with ya.)

Just pick a chapter in the Old Testament, which we just happen to be wading through in Disciple I at the moment and you will quickly get over the act of mispronunciations.

5 Now Adonijah, whose mother was Haggith, put himself forward and said, "I will be king." So he got chariots and horses [a] ready, with fifty men to run ahead of him. 6 (His father had never interfered with him by asking, "Why do you behave as you do?" He was also very handsome and was born next after Absalom.)

7 Adonijah conferred with Joab son of Zeruiah and with Abiathar the priest, and they gave him their support. 8 But Zadok the priest, Benaiah son of Jehoiada, Nathan the prophet, Shimei and Rei [b] and David's special guard did not join Adonijah.

9 Adonijah then sacrificed sheep, cattle and fattened calves at the Stone of Zoheleth near En Rogel. He invited all his brothers, the king's sons, and all the men of Judah who were royal officials, 10 but he did not invite Nathan the prophet or Benaiah or the special guard or his brother Solomon.

enough said about that one….


2. How do you feel about the use of texting shortcuts and trends? (ex: "I've got ur notes. Get them 2 u 2morow.")

That greatly depend on the circumstances. I have no problem using the abbreviations in texting situations, it is so much quicker and more efficient to use the abbreviations. However I do think that today's students are not being challenges enough to use the full power of the vocabulary they have at their disposal. When our younger generation can not finds the appropriate adjective to describe a humorous situation simple because they have been relying on LOL for so long then that’s where I draw the line. Shortcuts are wonderful when they are used appropriately, but they should never become a substitute for a full and rich command of the art of verbal communication.


3. Tell me about your high school senior picture. Please feel free to post.

Back in the day there simply was not any “Hoo Haa” about your senior years, not like it is today. At graduation we got one picture in front of the standard backdrop with that dark blue velvet drape secured with a giant cloths pin in the back.

Is it me or have we skipped a number…

5. Share a high school or college homecoming memory.

I try not to dwell on less than desirable circumstance so I will give this one a pass! High school was not my finest moment.


6. Linda at Mocha with Linda wants to know: "Do you prefer sunrises or sunsets?"

Yes! Nothing beats a good cup of coffee sitting in a comfy chair listening to the ocean waves watching the sunrise, but then that is only equal to sitting in that same chair with a nice clod beverage preferable a chilled glass of Pinot Griggo or Pomegranate Martine listening to those same waves watching the sun set back into the surf. It just doesn't get any better than that in my book!


7. Lea at Cici's Corner asks, "What is something you have not done that you desire to do?"

I saw a special on the Food Network a few weeks ago about “America’s Best” One episode focused on the best destinations for food. They did a piece on a CIA Boot Camp Cooking Vacation, y’all I saw that and I just wanted to do it! That is defiantly on my bucket list for sure!!!


8. Carol at Wanderings of an Elusive Mind ponders, "If you could come back [in another life] as an animal, which would it be?"

I look at my sweet Buster and I have to yearn for a life of leisure.

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A life of relaxation and no worries beyond when the girl child forget to take him for his afternoon walk. However I would have to request coming back as a dog either at my house or at Patrice’s or Linda’s house. Who wouldn't want to be Higgins, Zoe or Buster!!!


9. Joyce from The Other Side of the Pond is curious: "Where were you 10 years ago?" Please feel free to elaborate more than just your physical location.

The Year 2000….hmmmmmmm. My DD was 5 years old, my DS was 11. He was in Weebelo’s and she had just started kindergarten. We spent a week in Disney World just before Christmas. I was thick in mommy mode! Boy scouts, PTA, church activates. WOW! looking back on ten years is amazing.

Breakfast with Pluto!

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The DS graduation from Elementary school!

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The DD first day of Kindergarten.

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I will say that when I looked back at the photo albums for that year what I noticed most were the smiles. Without getting to dark and depressing that was one of  the last years we had that was free of rebellion. When my son graduated from elementary school and entered in to Middle School our lives took a dramatic turn. Teenage rebellion hit our home with a vengeance. It was such a nice reprieve to look back and remember the times when there were lots of smile and lots of fun times.


10. When you are proven to be correct in any contentious discussion, do you gloat?

That also greatly depend on the circumstances. I took great pleasure in asserting my correctness with my girl child after I read “The Last Song”, I’m just saying “I was so right about the out come of that novel!!!”


11. What is your favorite food which includes the ingredient "caramel?"

Caramel Pop Corn, Caramel Apples, Caramel Filled Chocolates and how about just a straight shot of caramel, I love those little squares wrapped in cellophane and warm caramel sauce over vanilla ice cream, chocolate covered caramel turtles, Snickers, Milky Way…..


12. If you could be part of any fictional family, which family would you choose and why?

Hands down, Little House on the Prairie, who wouldn’t want Charles Ingalls for their Pa! And Mary, Half Pint and Carrie and Willie for brothers and sisters. And Caroline, well she is the personification of motherhood in my book. Who wouldn’t want her bringing you a cup of nice herb tea, that she probably grew herself and pick from her own garden, when you had a tummy ache.

 

I’ll pop over and give all y’all Dozenetts a visit in the AM! Wednesdays are HUGELY busy days about the Be Still and Know household!

For more Random Dozen fun y’all head over the 2nd Cup of Coffee and link up!

Blessings

R

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

How to solve a problem…

Last week I had a minor tragic mishap with my cappuccino maker. One of the critical components to this machine is a small black plastic piece that is about the size of your pinky. It is the piece that makes all that wonderful frothiness, Y’all know me I like mine with extra foam! One afternoon as I was cleaning the machine and this piece broke, which of course given the HUGE importance of my afternoon latte’s, sent me directly in search of the customer service toll free number.

I explained to the wonderful woman on the phone that I needed to place an order for a replacement part ASAP. I was informed that the piece I was looking for was not in stock and would probably take about 6 to 8 week for new part to arrive at the warehouse.

SIX TO EIGHT WEEKS!!!!! YIKES!

In what I can only describe as an act of compassion the customer service person took pity on me and after about 20 minutes she finally found a piece that she thought might solve my problem.

This piece was shipped off to me that afternoon and I waited for it to arrive.

Later that afternoon I cautiously made a delicate repair with some super glue and then crossed my fingers to see if this would be successful. The glue held and I was able to maintain my emotional well being as well as my afternoon latte’s.

A few days later the new part arrived in the mail. I joyfully ripped open the wonderful padded envelope only to discover that it was not the piece we had discussed at all.

NOT the piece!!!!

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I raced back to the phone and frantically called for an emergency intervention, the balance of my peace of mind is directly connected to the frequency of my afternoon latte’s and my emotional well being was beginning to be effected.

I remained calm as I explained my dilemma. All I really needed was this small black plastic piece. I even went in search of the manual so I could accurately refer to the schematics for the proper technical term so there would be no further confusion on any ones part.

“I need the black plastic Frothing Aid” I explained as I clutched the manual in my shaking little hand. Visions of no more afternoon frothiness was simply too much to fathom. I could hear the woman frantically pecking away at her keyboard trying to locate this critical piece.

Small…Black…Plastic…about the size of my pinky…how hard could it be?

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Obviously harder that I counted on.

After a few minutes the customer service woman instructed me to go to my unit and unplug it from the wall and read to her the small numbers on the prongs of the cord. A few clicks later and the woman said “I can not locate the necessary part to complete your order. M’am, I’m going to have to send you a whole new unit.”

My eyebrows raised a bit.

“Well, that’s a way to solve a problem!” I thought to myself.

All I needed was a small black plastic piece that probably cost the manufacture a few cents to produce, what did I get?

A brand new Cappuccino maker that is now sitting on my kitchen table.

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Well there ya go!

The Be Still and Know Coffee Shoppe is back in operation, y’all stop by any time!

 

Blessings

R

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