Passion is a gritty kind of love, tough and

optimistic enthusiasm that overcomes negativity and inconvenience to make it

through to the end. (10,000 Reasons Overflow)

Friday, October 17, 2014

Rest, child

Wow, it's quiet. People are playing games, crocheting, playing guitar, I read a chapter in a great book (Chasing God by Angie smith) and i felt this overwhelming desire to stand in the doorway to the outside world. The weather is kind of dreary and as beautiful as it still is, I haven't gotten any super fabulous pictures the kind that are Facebook braggy but I still take them because I love the beauty of gray. 

Days like these force us to be still, snuggle up, think, pray, relax, rest, and find comfort in the very One who loves us most. We don't get wrapped up in the wonder seeking of the moments, we just are because, He is. 

I stood by the side door, warm on one side from the house, and the cool damp air hit my face and made me just... Thankful. Thankful that sometimes He says "stop running, child, just snuggle up in Me".

I looked out the door and I went to get my camera because while the picture might not be Facebook fabulous but they ring so sweetly to my heart, I didn't want to forget this moment, not ever. 

Rest in this moment, with Me.

He says, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” (Psalm 46:10 NIV)

Thursday, October 16, 2014

a tiny little secret...

Soo...  I have this crazy secret to tell you...  and I think it's HILARIOUS and you might not even care... but I thought I'd share it with you...

In our house...

We use men's deodorant/antiperspirant.  Yes, and there are no men living in our house. 

We sweat, and we sweat a lot, and women's normal antiperspirant just doesn't cut it.  That one commercial for secret "strong enough for a man but made for a woman"... bull-oney.  And then we tried the clinical strength...  nope.  it worked for a while but then it just seemed to make a mess of our clothes (no thanks!) so one of my favorite students told us about how she uses "Old Spice" and we tried it, and we like it. 

To tell you the truth, I hated most of those girly scents, like the baby powder one... BLECK!  DISGUSTING! 

So like most things I've found, it doesn't have to be expensive to work well, and it seems like men's things are cheaper than women's anyway. 

So if you come to my house and you see a men's deodorant, don't freak out, I'm not hiding a guy anywhere, we just use that deodorant.  LOL

Wednesday, October 15, 2014


Well Good Morning Everybody!  (OK in my mind I can hear Chad saying that! From Sunday mornings at Metro with his big flashy smile!)

But today I woke up and I prayed, I prayed for my teams that I went to Haiti with this year, specifically.  It’s been a long couple months since I’ve been there, and my last trip was hard, really hard.  It probably was the hardest trip I’ve ever had, and I’ve had some doosies…  

My friend was IM’ing me yesterday and I thought about how incredibly lucky I am, really blessed by the amazing, gentle hand of God. My life hasn’t been easy, that’s for sure, and in that I’ve probably made it harder on others around me, and I’m sorry for that.  Mostly, I’ve probably made it hardest for my Peanut, while I’d like to have given her all her hearts desires, I couldn’t. But we sure have had some great times, and I am so thankful for the things we’ve done, worked hard for, cried through, laughed so loud we were annoying, and I’ve loved, oh how I’ve loved her, and many countless others.  This single mom is blessed more than she deserves, that’s for sure

I am going to Germany, I’ve never been there before, and I’ve always wanted to go, maybe because my dad’s best friend while I was growing up is from there, I don’t know, but I’ve always wanted to see that beautiful country.  I am so excited!!! 

I was thinking about the time I got to go to Vienna, Austria.  I mean, wow. I don’t even know how we could have ever afforded it.  Surely, God’s provision.  We went on such a tight budget, it was crazy, I think we split EVERYTHING (and we always had enough) because we didn’t have a lot of extra money.   But we went, and I was able to see the World’s Oldest Zoo  but better than that, I saw my daughter sing at the Musikverein in Vienna.  I mean, it’s crazy, I was just some stupid single mom, barely making it, and my daughter with this amazing talent…  God has surely blessed us.     

And how many times have I been to Haiti?  Yikes!  A place I never wanted to go, and my heart just feels so free and open there, I am so thankful to have gone so many times, met so many amazing people, and loved so very much!  I don’t know what the future holds, but I hope it’s more trips and more hugs, and more smooches!

And in 8 days I will be joining 5 people I love so very much!  They moved to Colorado, and everyone knows that I wish I was there. OH MAN!  I miss them!  Its hard to follow after the kind of leader that Adam (and Katie) are without missing it.  it’s hard to love 3 little boys, and have them steal your heart, only to move away, but the truth is, I am better for knowing and my best for loving them.  And how lucky am I that I can go see them.  I mean, it’s just amazing!!!

But you know what the best part is? I’m in a place where I love, and am loved. I have friends who love me EVERYDAY even when I’m a crazy person, and calm me down, and celebrate with me.  I have a great job, and a great cute little house, I have too much stuff (and I’ve gone in my life without!), we are never without clean water and food, and love.  I am going up north with people this weekend that I love and love me, and I might have to do some work, but that’s ok, because if I worked at McDonald’s I wouldn’t have to do that, but I probably couldn’t afford to go if I did.  And I also get to hug my dear friend because I am going a little early to see her!  

It’s been a long journey, not without heartache and pain, but worth every step.  

My heart is full, I am covered by the grace of God.

I am thankful!

Monday, October 13, 2014

Crockpot Freezer meals!

I tried some crockpot freezer meals, I was going to wait til I actually tried them, but I thought I'd forget... so here they are!

Slow Cooker Cilantro Lime Chicken
Yield: 6-8 servings
  • 6 chicken breasts
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 2 cups cilantro
  • 24 oz bag of frozen corn (can be less depending on preference)
  • 4 minced garlic cloves
  • 1 finely chopped red onion (I used just plain old yellow onion)
  • 2 cans of black beans, rinsed
  • 2 t cumin
  • 2 t chipotle powder
  • salt/pepper to taste
  • *1/2 c water or chicken broth for freezer meal.
Shake it up, seal, label and put in the freezer. Instructions for Container: cook on low 8 hours or high 4 hours, serve with hot tortillas or tostitos. Dress with sour cream, guacamole, and/or cheese
The day I make it, I will add 1 cup corn (that I prepped in my freezer) and 1 can black beans


Crockpot Green Chile Pork Stew
Serving Size: 6
Adapted from: Skinny Taste
  • 2 lbs boneless pork loin roast, fat chopped off
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 2 T all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 c chopped onion
  • 2 four ounce cans green chiles
  • 2 t chopped jalapeno (I did 3 to make it a bit more spicy)
  • 10 oz can diced tomatoes and green chilies (whichever heat you prefer) (I did 10 oz fresh tomatoes and 1 jalapeno – seeded and chopped)
  • ½ c chicken broth
  • 1 T cumin
  • ½ t garlic powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  1. Cut pork into 2-inch pieces
  2. In a skillet add the olive oil and heat then toss in the pork and brown on all sides
  3. Add one tablespoon of flour at a time and cook a little between each one
  4. Add the pork and the rest of the ingredients to the crock pot
  5. Cook on high for 5-6 hours, if frozen 7-8 hours
  6. ***If you are making it for a freezer meal skip the browning and just toss everything into your freezer bag.

Mexican Casserole
1 pound ground beef (cooked)
1 medium onion (chopped)
1 small green pepper (chopped)
14.5 oz can diced tomatoes ( I used 2 c fresh tomatoes)
8 oz tomato sauce
1/4 c water
1 pkg taco seasoning
1 T chili powder
Don’t add to freezer bag:
1 1/3 c. uncooked instant rice (or 3 c. cooked rice)
1 c. cheddar cheese
I will add 16 oz can kidney beans (drained and rinsed) when I cook it that day!
Cook 4-6 hours on low


Taco Soup
1 pound ground beef
1 onion (chopped)
1 can tomato sauce
1 can rotel (I used 10 oz fresh tomatoes, 1 jalapeno seeded and diced)
½ can water
2 T taco seasoning
Mix all ingredients in freezer safe bag and freeze. 
To serve, throw it in the crockpot for 4 hours on high or 8 hours on low.

The day I cook it I will add 1 c corn, and 2 cans chili beans

Chicken Cacciatore
1 lb chicken breasts
1 (26 oz) jar of chunky vegetable-style spaghetti sauce
1 zucchini, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
1 sweet onion, chopped
Place all ingredients in a resealable gallon-sized freezer bag and mix together.
Garnish: shredded Parm cheese
When ready to eat, remove from freezer and thaw in fridge for 24 hours. Cook on LOW for 6-8 hours. 

Recipes, life, and reckless abandon

Want to know something about me, I cook with reckless abandon and nothing really else in my life is like that. I’m almost always scared.  Scared I’ll fail, and sometimes even scared I will succeed.
Yesterday I had to make potato soup for a sprinkle for my friend.  You know I don’t have a recipe.  I know what goes in, I know what shouldn’t go in… and so I cook.  Of course on those days, the soup is REALLY good, and everyone wants to know how I made it.
So if you’d like to know… here was my recipe.
            I sautéed some onions
            Then I added peeled, cubed redskin potatoes
            Found some celery that I had cut up for freezer crock pot meals… that went in
            Added Maggi chicken boullion (because everything is better with Maggi, 
           and it’s in everything, just ask my dear sweet spunky Maxtelena)
            Added salt, pepper, parsley.
            Then smashed up a bit of the potatoes with my immersion blender 
            Add half and half, Salavdorian sour cream
            Then added Monterrey Jack cheese (hand shredded)
            And then last but not least a half a block of cream cheese.

Well no wonder it was delicious.  This was a HUGE pot of soup, and really really good!
Some people are afraid to cook, afraid it might turn out, maybe because it never does…  not me, the worst that can happen is I throw it away (or add more cheese)

When it comes to real life, I wish I lived more like I cook.  I am afraid of a lot of things, and so I pray a lot, stand in paralysis waiting, sometimes I jump too quick because the last time I stood too long last time!  I am asking for prayer for something, just pray, it seems sooo awesome and it’s a part of the Community Center I am dreaming of!  Small steps.
Today I flipped my calendar (I read all the days I miss when I am not at work) and read this…

I have to say, I am excited to turn the door knob.  Not ready for reckless abandon, but excited about moving forward!

Excited about little things…

"His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!  Matt 25:23