Still Finding the Thread

Believe it or not, I’m still here…got a little sidetracked, but I’m still here!

I’m not going to bore you with a year-in-review update. How about just a few pictures to capture some of my favorite moments?

Happy day! Got to see my big little brother for the first time in 22 years!

aaron and me

…and met my niece and nephew in person!

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One of the few lovely things about my new job…the lunch-break sanctuary.

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Another happy day…got to celebrate our 22nd wedding anniversary while attending the marriage of a lovely young couple from church.  I do believe this is the best ever picture of me and my dearest!

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So much fun! A group of folks from our sister church in Ontario came down to help us out with a week-long summer kids program. Met some pretty amazing folks!

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Summer lobster feed is a great time for an updated family photo…for once, we were ALL there!

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Dearest daughter with her young man.

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And a moment from our day in Boston with Junior to celebrate his birthday…farmers market, Faneuil Hall, Boston Aquarium, Mike’s Pastry, and a LONG walk to Barnes and Nobel…great day!

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There’s so much more, of course, but these are the best moments…the ones I like to dwell on.  It’s been a long year, a bumpy ride, and a great adventure, all rolled up in one….and I still haven’t found that darn thread, but that’s all part of the journey, I guess, so we’ll keep on keepin’ on.

Until next time (and I’m hoping “next time” is sooner than next year), be blessed!

“Honor Your Father & Mother” Day

Being the author of this blog, I declare this post is dedicated for the entire day to “Honor your father and your mother.”  That’s right, I’m declaring an official one day personal blog holiday especially for stopping to take a moment to go give our parents some recognition.  I’ll go first.

This is my mom, Susie, and my step-father, Bill, aka, Gramma and Grampa.  They’ve been married for over 10 years now, and, in my opinion, are perfect for each other.  I chose this picture, first, because it’s a really great picture of them, but mostly because it depicts one of the things that I most admire about them, their patriotism.  My parents are some of the most proud Americans I personally know, and I’m really grateful for their example to me and my children.

Individually, I admire how my mom is growing in her relationship with the Lord, learning to lean on Him to help her deal with the pain and inconveniences she is experiencing because of physical ailments, and how she has come to be able to laugh and get on with life regardless of how her body feels.  And I must admit, though it sometimes causes me to blush, my ego really appreciates how she is so vocal with her delusions that I’m the best at everything I do.  (Man, I wish my kids had that same delusion!).

And Grampa Bill…he’s one in a million.  I love how he makes my mom happy.  And I love how he took my family and me as his own when he married my mom even though I was full-grown with kids of my own.  I love how he reminds me of Santa Claus, and how he manages to make every waitress and cashier he encounters blush with his innocent flirting.

And I’m sure it wouldn’t be hard to come up with more great things about my parents, but I’ll stop now because I’d really like to hear what you appreciate about your parents.  Even if you don’t choose to share your comments here, I hope you’ll take advantage of “Honor Your Father & Mother Day” and tell them personally.  Mom, I know you’ll read this, so consider yourself told! 🙂

Be blessed, ’cause if you have parents, and we all do, then you already are!

m

Confessions of a Less-than-excellent Wife

O.K., so when I left off yesterday I said that I was hoping to give my husband a “cheerful heart,” a cup of coffee, and maybe some dinner when he got home.  Fail.  I had the coffee brewed, and was definitely in a peaceful mood, but by the time he walked in the door, I was zonked out on the couch, sound asleep, without a hint of dinner on the way.  Oh well…there’s always another day, right?  I’m pretty sure dear hubby wasn’t put out by my “failure” though.  As long as he’s got that welcome home cup’a joe, he’s a happy as a clam! 🙂

When I opened up my bible to Proverbs 31 this morning, the thing that jumped out at me was how the excellent wife was so great at shopping and cooking for her family.  Check it out:

She is like the ships of the merchant; she brings her food from afar.  She rises while it is yet night and provides food for her household and portions for her maidens.  Proverbs 31:14-15

I have a confession to make.  I don’t enjoy cooking.  Never have.  Ask my family.  I CAN cook (except for steak…I can’t cook that to save my life!), I just don’t enjoy cooking.  My motive for cooking is, number 1, my family needs to be fed, and number 2, I like to eat.  So this whole “providing food for her household” thing is clearly something I could benefit from learning to do with a more cheerful heart.  That being said, I decided to get a little audience participation.

I’m going to share a recipe with you today, one of the handful of recipes that my family loves and I can actually make pretty well.  In return, I’m asking each of you who end up reading this post to share a meal recipe with me.  You can either post it in the comments area to share with all of us, or e-mail it to me at HMDDesigns@maine.rr.com and I’ll share it with everyone in a separate post.  Either way, I’m committed to trying each recipe that you send to me.  I’m hoping we’ll all have a little fun together trying something new.  And if you end up trying one of the recipes yourself, let me know how it came out.  Ready?  Here’s my recipe, which, by the way, we’re having tonight:

Enchilada Casserole

1 cup chopped onion

1/2 cup chopped green pepper

2 tablespoons butter

1 pound cooked ground pork (you can use chicken or turkey as well. Diced finely works O.K., too, but I prefer ground)

1 4-ounce can diced green chili peppers

3 tablespoons butter

1/4 cup flour

1 teaspoon ground coriander

3/4 teaspoon salt

2 1/2 cups chicken broth

1 cup sour cream

1 1/2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese (6 ounces)

12 6-inch tortillas

Preheat oven to 350’F.  In a large saucepan cook onion and green pepper in the 2 tablespoons butter till tender.  Combine onion mixture in a bowl with cooked meat and green chili peppers; set aside.

For sauce, in the same saucepan, melt 3 tablespoons butter.  Stir in flour, coriander, and salt.  Stir in chicken broth all at once; cook and stir till thickened and bubbly.  Cook and stir 1 to 2 minutes more.  Remove from heat; stir in sour cream and 1/2 cup of the cheese.  Stir 1/2 cup of the sauce into the meat mixture.  Dip each tortilla into remaining sauce to soften; fill each with about 1/4 cup of the meat mixture.  Roll up.  Arrange rolls in a 9×13-inch casserole dish; pour remaining sauce over top.  Sprinkle with remaining cheese.  Bake, uncovered, for about 25 minutes or till bubbly.

Happy cooking!

m