I Believe She Loves Me. Aw, I love this dog…a whole lot. She came to us one cold December night…out of the blue. A stray or a “drop” dog. There was a lot of scarring on her. Also, she had a cigar burn on top of her head. Add that to the tattoo on her belly. However, she was fixed.
She sat on my step and didn’t bark, she howled until I let her in. Sadly, she was timid, skinny, and definitely wormy. Francis is completely house trained. Also, she new basic dog commands.
She loves all children, has never bit or tried to be vicious to anyone. This amazing dog tolerates babies pulling at her and little dogs nipping at her heels. She loves me….where I go, she goes; where I sleep, she sleeps. She is never far from my side.
I came upstairs and she was sleeping on my pillows 🙂
In a heavy soup pot, fry the bacon until crisp. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to drain and set aside. Discard all but 1 tablespoon of the bacon fat.
Add the olive oil to the pot and heat over medium heat. Next, add the onion and sauté until soft and translucent, 3 to 4 minutes. Lastly, add the garlic and continue cooking just until fragrant.
Add the diced tomatoes (pureed), chicken broth and thyme. Stir to combine and bring to a simmer. Finally, add seasoning and continue simmering, stirring occasionally, for 20 minutes.
Lastly, add crumbled bacon and heavy cream.
**You can use milk instead of heavy cream or whipping cream. You can also substitute the bacon for REAL bacon bits. To add more nutrition, you can add a handful or two of freshly chopped spinach or kale.**
Their bedroom is a Cesspool of Hell. Thank God, I love these boys…cause if I didn’t…
Today, my ambition was a little more than I had anticipated. We have 4 bedrooms in our home. Our oldest has her room, the 2 other girls share a room and the 3 boys share a room. A few days ago, I had the boys remove EVERYTHING in their room, except their beds.
Large Family Laundry
We washed all the bedding. Fluffed all their pillows. Threw their stuffed animals in the dryer with a dryer sheet, just to get the NASTY smell of boy sweat out of that room.
A friend came over and cleaned their carpet. At one point, she had to take apart the carpet cleaner to pull out all the hair and nasty from it. Sadly, this was because it stopped sucking up the dirty water. I looked over when she had put it back together and watched black water being sucked up. The smell was atrocious. So bad, that I had to open the window to let in some fresh air.
While she was doing that, I was washing ALL their clothes.
My boys smell. They smell.
I went through all their crap toys and I collected 2 bags of garbage (bear in mind their room is not very big…it fits a set of twin size bunk beds and a loft bed. There is no more floor space for anything else. The little boys have Sterilite containers that I put their underwear and socks in. I have their shirts and pants hanging upstairs in my closet. Boo has one of those 3 cubbies things that has 3 cubes in it for his socks and underwear. His clothes hang in the super small closet in their room.
I keep their toys in 20-gallon Sterilite containers and they are kept, in what is supposed to be, a coat closet in the front hall. That is also where I keep all the games and a bookcase for our many many books. There is no room for coats in that coat closet.
Hey, I do what I can and I make use of every single nook and cranny in my house.
I am still not done, though I have been working so hard. The boys do help, but I like to get it done quickly and they tend to find “lost stuff” and start to play.
I had the big girls organize the games for me, so that was a load off. Peach does the laundry and she has worked diligently for 3 days washing all their stuff. Bug does what I ask when she is home…but mostly it is me just organizing, repairing, throwing away, finding, rehoming everything in that room.
I may take a picture of what is still occupying my dining room and foyer…I should have taken a before picture so you could see the progress that is being done.
A Spin on Plain Ol Green Beans is just that, a small addition to a regular vegetable. It is nothing fancy, however, sometimes side dishes are boring. Green beans with a little pizzazz.
2 bags frozen green beans (about 24 ozs.)
1 small bag of sliced almonds
4 slices of bacon, cooked
A splash of oil
A Spin on Plain Ol Green Beans
The frozen green beans that I bought were the type that you can steam, in the bag, in the microwave. I did that. You can also use fresh green beans, canned, french cut, whatever tickles your fancy.
While the green beans were cooking, I poured a splash of oil in a saucepan along with the bacon. Cook the bacon until done. Lay on paper towel to drain.
In the bacon grease (yes, I know), pour the steamed green beans into the saucepan and add seasoning. Throw in the sliced almonds and the crumbled bacon. Stir and let it all meld together cause it tastes better.
**If you do not have bacon, to cook, you could also use REAL bacon bits (no imitation).**
2 c. white cheese (I used smoked gouda and Havarti)
Cheesy Potato Chicken Directions
In a 13×9 greased dish, layer 3 potatoes (french fry style) on the bottom. Sprinkle some seasoning on top. Next layer will be chicken, with a bit of seasoning. In a pan, saute garlic, peppers, onion, and mushrooms until tender.
Spread over the chicken. Next layer will be the remaining potatoes. Sprinkle with seasoning. Lastly the 2 c. of shredded cheese. Pour over the heavy cream.
Cover with aluminum foil (poke holes in the top) and bake at 350 for 1 hr.
Sweet 16. I simply cannot believe my baby is 16. She has been counting down the days since she was 13 years old. A couple of days ago, while we were eating supper…she looked at me with those giant blue eyes and said: “mom, I’ve waited my WHOLE LIFE to be 16.” Aw, to be young and excited about the newest chapter in her life.
Change is Coming
At 16 (she believes….not so much of a reality), she can stay up later, get her permit, date, and she gets a cell phone. My goodness….the excitement doesn’t stop. Reality is, she will still go to bed at a decent hour, she can get her permit but she needs to realize that driving is a PRIVILEGE, not a RIGHT. Dating, if the boy can withstand me then we will see. We are more of a courting family (although it has never been an issue…not yet), and she did get a cell phone.
Who knew that it is such a big deal to have a cellphone. I’ve seen kids as young as 9 with one. I’m like seriously, people, who the heck are they gonna call. Are you gonna call them on their cells to let them know that dinner is ready when the child is 6 feet away? I don’t think so.
Cell Phone Rules
There are strict restrictions on phones. Phones are turned off and put in a basket, on the mantle by 8 pm. They are not turned back on until 9 am. It may be turned on during school hours, but it is not used. It doesn’t even come in the church because I feel that is disrespectful. I have full rights to see/delete/add to anything because I pay the bill. She is 16…she lives under my roof….its my rules. There is so much evil in this world and so much cyber-bullying, that I will do what I can, when I can to protect my children.
It has been such an honor to have been chosen by God to raise this beautiful child. She is a spitfire. Honestly, she is much like I was (am). Boy…am I getting paid back! She loves horses, drawing, giggling, and coloring. Also, she is my resident animal whisperer. She loves to laugh and she hates math. It is important to note that she is brilliant, just chooses not to apply her brilliance at times. She loves the Lord and missions. Peach is an excellent babysitter and she is simply funny. That, and she is stunning! I make beautiful babies 🙂
Happy Birthday my sweet Peachy Girl! Looking forward to seeing the path that the Lord has laid out for you!
There is not a season that goes by, in my life, that I do not think of my priorities and what they are or what they *should* be, as a believer. I stew about how I *want* my day to go and how it ends up going. I try to be salt and light in all that I do, yet I fail miserably or my depression comes roaring out and I want to just hide.
Recently, my pastor has been going through Matthew. He wants to go into each of the gospels revealing new and exciting things that I may have never read/understood. While I was reading the Scripture, one Sunday morning, this little snippet was written up at the top of my Bible: “Priorities: Planning Your Day.”
I thought it might be of interest to others, so I thought I would go about defining priorities (God’s Order) to everyone who might read this blog. One day at a time! I want everyone to let the words and Scripture sink in, instead of just giving a list.
Psalm 119:105 “Your Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path.”
Psalm 119:130 “The entrance of Your words gives light; it gives understanding to the simple.”
PRIORITY #1: YOUR PERSONAL RELATIONSHIP WITH CHRIST
Matthew 6:33 “But seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.”
Phil. 3:8 “Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ.
I am SO far from perfect where my walk is concerned. I have no doubt that I will see the Kingdom of Heaven when the Lord chooses to call me home. He is my Savior. I wish I could say that I get up an hour before the children…have a set “quiet time” spot…..with all my notebooks/pens/highlighters/Bible in a cute little basket…and this is how I begin my day. I have NEVER been this person. Ever. Like never, ever.
I’m more of a hard to wake up, not a morning person, don’t speak to me and I won’t speak to you until 9:30 or 10, breathe prayers throughout the day, have 500 journals started but never finished, type of girl. I have learned to be okay with that. I am who I am and God created me to look like His Son. Even though I’m not that “morning quiet time” person, God can still use me and He still hears me when I pray. Isn’t that awesome!
Seek His face.
Remember who you are and WHOSE you are.
Be okay with yourself.
Get in the Word.
Get into the church.
God is with you….and once you are His…He NEVER lets go…no matter what!
This picture was taken at the giant cross in Wickliffe, KY.
Even a Moth Knows Him. This is one of the coolest things we have ever seen. Several years ago, Bug was in her room and she found this moth! God is everywhere, all the time. It is such a neat thing to see His sweet love just sitting around in the oddest of places.
We have caught, kept, released many things. Moths, bugs, snakes, animals…but this one takes the cake. Sometimes, we need to see God’s goodness in the simplest form. The rawest form, if you will. In the busyness of life, we tend to overlook the extraordinary.
Just the Dark Before the Morning. My morning is here. Today, the pain and hurt of yesterday is gone. I choose joy. This song carried me through some very dark times. This was during our most difficult time with one of our children. Also, it was during our adoption journey with Jude.
Learning to Trust
I would listen to this every single time I would go to work. It filled my soul and it gives me a sense of hope that I felt was diminishing. Even when I listen to it now, I go back to 7 years ago during that season of my life. The government had dictated how I live my life. It told me to put my kids in school, go back to work, do XYZ, and then you could possibly bring your son home.
Seasons of Life
Through this time, however, I met some people in my life. One person is still in my life and he is a dear friend that I completely treasure. The other, well, she was there for a season. What a beautiful season that was and I hold that time dear to my heart. It is always Just the Dark Before the Morning.