Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Life Changes

One of the many things that I love about my life is that it is always changing. In one way or another I am always growing as things around me shift.  One of my current life changes is that after 20 years of mainly being a stay at home/home school mom I am looking to join the work force. The economy here is probably no different then the economy elsewhere, and that means getting more money into the house. Things are tight, so tight that the stress is showing on my face as well as my dear husbands. I may not be able to do anything to help his sales increase (he owns his own business), but I can do something to help alleviate some of the stress. This weekend I applied online to two places, but I plan on doing more over this next week. Ideally I would love to be working with the week, but I'm not holding out high hopes for that. Please keep me in prayer as I enter this new phase of my life. Also keep my family in prayer as this will be a big adjustment. 

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Jogging Issues

I want to jog. There, I said it....out loud....even it "out loud" is online. It counts, right?  As a 43 year old woman, I know I need to exercise at least three times a week.  My want to wants to, but body fights it. This summer I was walking at least 3 days a week, but once things got busy my exercise time was the first to go. It should not be like that. My health is important to me. I want to be able to walk to the store, without getting winded. I want to play with my grandchildren, when I actually have grandchildren. I don't want to be a watcher of life, I want to be an active participant.  My daughter jogs 5 days a week, and she tells me just to do it. Not to overdo it, but walk and then jog till the jogging overtakes the walking. I'm afraid. My fear stems from my father having a heart attack and dying at age 42. I am 43, so I have outlived him but I'm still afraid. I can't let fear rule me, I need to just get off my butt and DO something. 

I found a neat website "Couch to 5-K running plan" and it is what I want to do. It is probably not the best time of year to start jogging, with the snow and icy roads but I will make due. I will post an update once a week to let anyone who is interested know how I'm doing. If you are not interested, then could you please pray for me. Seriously. I will need it!! :o)

Friday, November 26, 2010

Dear Mom

Dear Mom:

      It has been over four years since you have sat at the Thanksgiving table, and although each year should gets easier I still miss you very much.  I miss you running in like a tornado juggling pies, homemade cranberry sauce, breads, pork roast, pickles, cider, and anything else you thought the dinner needed. At the time I didn't realize I would miss it, but I do. I miss hearing your laugh and your occasional use of cuss words. I miss how you always complemented Bruce, even though Kim was the one scurrying around getting the dinner ready. I miss sitting around after dinner, cleaning up and talking. I miss watching the parade with you, as well as your running commentary of it. I just plain ol' miss you mom and I wish you were here. The kids are all growing so fast, you would be very proud of all of them.  Thanks for leaving such a wonderful legacy, I hope you knew how much we all loved and appreciated you. 

                                                 Love your daughter, 

Monday, November 22, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

As Thanksgiving is just a few days away and life here is busy, I will not be posting till next Monday. I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving with those that you love. 

Editing to add this link, please read this it and remember to be thankful for what you have. 

Friday, November 19, 2010


This is the smallest of the kittens and now has a new home with my mother in law.  
 All the kittens, before two went to new homes. 

 Sun shinning through the woods in northern NH. 


Me along with one of my loves, pumpkin spice coffee!! :o)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Works For Me Wednesday

I love candles, but I don't always have a lighter or matches handy. What I do have is toothpicks, yes they are right on top of my stove. I light our gas stove, put the toothpick to the flame, and then use the toothpick to light the candle(s). Simple. Easy. Inexpensive. 

What 'Works for You?" Head on over to We Are That Family and join in the fun!! 

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Heritage ~ Uncle Benny

I am starting a new monthly series entitled, 'Heritage', in which I write about a person who has impacted my life in a positive way. Too many times those who have influenced us get lost as time goes on, but I want to keep the stories alive by sharing them. If you want to join in feel free to leave a comment with a link to your blog. I would be honored to read about your heritage and those who were part of it. 

Uncle  Benny  

Uncle Benny was my great uncle, my grandmothers brother. He was the youngest of ten children and he grew up in East Hartford, Connecticut on a tobacco farm.  Uncle Benny had special needs, I'm not exactly sure what his diagnosis was but his speech was slurred and he could not read or write.  My grandmother said that he had a traumatic head injury as a child, but she was not sure what happened.  

Uncle Benny was a jolly fellow, he was like a big soft teddy bear. His kindness was extended to everyone he met, not just family. My mother was a single mom and money was always tight, Uncle Benny bought our winter coats every year. Even when my sister and I moved in with our grandmother, he still bought our winter coats. He wanted to make sure that we were warm. Apparently he knew what it was like to be cold, poor, and have to wear ragged clothes and he did not want that for us. I remember vividly going to the store with him and picking out any coat I wanted. It was like Christmas! Then when we would get up to the cash register, he would sign his name on the check and have the cashier fill it out. He never appeared to be embarrassed or ashamed that he could not write, and he was not too proud to ask for help.

Every morning Uncle Benny would come to my grandmothers house and have tea and toast. Then he would drive my sister to school, he did this every day until she graduated.  He would come by at least three times a week for supper and stay well into the evening. I never remember my grandmother getting annoyed or even saying she was too busy, she would patiently serve and talk to him.  

Uncle Benny loved to hear about our life. He was truly interested in what we were learning, who our friends were, where we were going, and what were doing. I never felt like I was talking to an adult who was asking for information to be kind, but really didn't care.  He looked me in the eye and let me know I was important and what I had to say was important. 

He had an overwhelming love for the Lord, and he was honestly my first example of a life well lived.  He was Catholic and he attended Mass every morning and he blessed himself every time he went by a Catholic Church. I know that some Christians believe you cannot be a Catholic and be saved, but I totally disagree.  Uncle Benny had a child like faith, that was pure and simple.  He believed, he accepted, and he walked out his faith.  

After I got married and moved away, I didn't see Uncle Benny as much. When I did the visits were all too short, but they were filled with much talk and laughter.  He only got to see two of my children and when he saw them he picked them up ever so gingerly.  

In 1994 Uncle Benny died from an embolism in his leg.  I remember my mother calling and telling me, even though he was in his 70's it was a huge loss for the family.  Today I recall stories of Uncle Benny, who he was, what he did, and how he was the first person to really show the love of Christ to me.  I want to remember to pass on the stories, so that way the next generations will know about him as well. 

Decision Points

The more I hear George W. Bush talk, the more I like him. During his Presidency America had the worst attack on American soil since Pearl Harbor. He had to make tough decisions, that were not always popular among the people. At the height of his terms as President people loved him and at the end of second term many people claimed to hate him. Yes, they actually did claim to hate him. They called him liar, satan, Hitler, and many other terrible things. It is interesting to me, because the people who now complain about "civility" were the most uncivil during the 'Bush era'.  I guess it is okay to be uncivil if it is someone you don't agree with. 

During the end his Presidency I believe he got a bum rap. He did not go to the media and try to explain things, but rather he took the garbage that was dished out. Now in his book Decision Points he gets to tell the truth about what happened. You see, none of us were there. We don't know the inner workings of the Presidency, we only see a small sliver.  I have been watching interviews on the internet with President Bush, and he truly amazes me. He is humble, kind, compassionate, steadfast, and he stand for what he believes is right. Maybe I don't agree with everything he did, but I would rather have a President stand for something then fall for everything. 

All this to say, love him or hate him I think the book will be an excellent read. I plan on getting a copy and when I do I will share an honest review with you. 

Monday, November 15, 2010

Menu Plan Monday

Things are financially tight here, so this weeks menu will be what I have on hand. I have a whole chicken, so there will be several meals with chicken this week. 

Monday: Rosemary Baked Chicken, Rice, Broccoli

Tuesday: Chicken Casserole with Stuffing

Wednesday: Chicken Soup with Barely

Thursday: Pancakes, Eggs, and Toast

Friday: Homemade Pizza

Saturday: Left over soup with homemade bread

What is on your menu this week? Are you having a variety of items or are you like me and sticking to one thing? To join in the menu planning fun and get great ideas, head on over to Organizing Junkie and join in! 

Sunday, November 14, 2010


One of my favorite past times, is going to cemeteries. I know it might sound strange and creepy, but honestly it is neither of those things for me. Perhaps it's because when I was child the neighborhood kids [including me] used to play in the cemetery. There was a big field and we used to play tag, kick the can, red rover red rover, and of course hide and see among the tombstones. Fun times! :o) 

Another reason I may be overly fond of cemeteries is, because visiting them and caring for the graves was part of my upbringing. I lived with my grandmother from the age of 9-19, and she was the family caretaker. Every spring we would trudge over to the cemetery and put flowers in the family plot. No one was neglected, they all received this treatment.Throughout the summer we would maintain the flowers and rake up around the graves to make them 'presentable'. In the fall we would put pumpkins and then in the winter the wreaths would go on. 

It was just a part of my heritage. 

Now that I live away from home, I don't go to the family plot very often. I do however, like to visit other cemeteries. Especially the older ones. If you have never been to an old cemetery, you really should go. It is a mini history lesson, looking at the dates and trying to connect the dots is intriguing.   For example, one family had three children die within days of each other. Sad yes, but the most likely cause was illness. Many times the surrounding graves will also have the same dates on them, which would point to some type of plague. I actually looked up the date and it most likely was small pox. Yes, I am weird. 

If you homeschool, I highly recommend getting out and taking your kids to the local older cemeteries. Not only will they learn not to be afraid of death, but they also can learn a little about another family. 

One of Those Days

Have you ever had one of those days, when you wake up and knew you probably were better off in staying in bed? Today is one of those days. Nothing in particular has made this day a staying in bed under the covers type of day, it is more like a culmination of things. Things that honestly don't matter in the whole scope of life, but today right now they matter to me. In the midst of me having a day, I have managed to get everyone who is awake to have a day too. I guess the saying is really true, "If momma ain't happy no one is happy." Well, I should go and read my Bible, pray, and try to have a better attitude before I head off to church! ;o)  Don't ya love those Sundays? [said with much sarcasm] 

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Woman's Day Book ~ Novemeber 9th

Outside my window...grey cold rainy day. The branches in the trees are moving, so it is windy too. 

I am thinking...about how life changes and how exciting that change is!

I am thankful for...my husband, who works very hard for this family. 

From the kitchen...I seem to be fading again in the department. 

I am wearing...a red shirt, a red zippy, black jeans, and sneakers.  
I am remembering...my mother, as I think about the holidays.  

I am going...to go to Pathways (Care Net). 

I am reading…stuff for Philosophy and Psychology. I think the days of me reading for fun are over for awhile.  

I am hoping…to get Max a ticket home soon for Christmas break. 

On my mind…money, but that seems to be a never ending battle. 

I am hearing...the television. 

Around the house...the kids are upstairs. One is watching a dvd and the other is sewing. 

Noticing that…I'm not minding my grey hairs. 

Monday, November 8, 2010


Taking college classes has been an interesting and eye opening experience. I'm so blessed that I can take classes through a Christian University, the views are so deep and Biblically grounded.  I'm currently in Philosophy and Psychology, my last classes were Bible and Theology.  

Philosophy is intriguing, because it is specifically about world views, what they are, and why they matter. In the Christian world it is so easy to sit in our comfy church, in our comfy pews, and not reach out beyond our own walls. Yes, we may have 'events' to bring people in, but is that really reaching out? 

Is the church that we have today, the church that is most effective for Christ? 

I don't have any answers right now, and I don't have time to go into everything that I have learned and am learning. I am rambling out loud, through my fingers. 

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Woman's Convention

Tomorrow evening I'm headed out to annual woman's convention and I'm excited! Though I will not be spending the two nights there, I'm looking forward to spending time with my lady friends. Last year was the first year I went to this type of convention, and I love it!! It was so refreshing to be around like minded women sharing in the Word, praying, and worshiping together. I know that Christians cannot be cloistered, we need to reach out in love to those who do not share our beliefs. However, this time of fellowship is sweet and uplifting. It is a refilling of the soul and renewing of the mind, and it is something that I really need at this point in my life. I will post some time over the weekend and share some of the notes that I know I will be taking.  ;o]

Beef Barley Soup

I normally do not post recipes, and the reason is twofold:

1.) I am really not that great of a cook. Oh, I can hold my own and feed my family but I don't have burning passion for it that many other bloggers do.

2.) When I make my own recipe, I usually just fudge it. Meaning, I don't write down measurements and that makes it hard to share.

This beef barely recipe was just too good not to share. It was simple, nutritious, and cheap. I used a crock pot, but you could cook it on the stove or even in the oven. 

Beef Barely Soup

1-2 lbs. of hamburg
6 potatoes
10 carrots 
2 onions
1 clove of garlic
 any other seasonings that you want


1.) Brown the hamburg and add in salt, pepper, and paprika in a skillet. I used a large skillet for this, because I also added other ingredients.  I told you, I don't do measurements, this was all to taste. 

2.) Cut up the potatoes, carrots, onions, and mince the garlic.

3.) Once the hamburg is browned put all the vegetables and garlic in the skillet along with a cup or two of water. Make sure to get all the bits off the bottom of the skillet. Let simmer for about 20 minutes.

4.) Dump everything from the skillet into a crock pot or a bigger pot and add a couple more cups of water. Add a half cup to a cup of barely.

5.) Let cook for the rest of the day.

6.) Add seasonings to taste and eat. 

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Get Out and Vote

If you do nothing else today, get out and vote. It is something that is a American right and really an honor. Your voice has a chance to be heard, even if no one knows your name. If you follow me at all, you probably know where I land on political issues. If not, you can go here to read my thoughts on this years election. All that being said, it does not matter to me who you vote for, just vote. I am not so ideologically set that I cannot see or value other people's opinions. Have a good day, and remember to vote!! :o)

Monday, November 1, 2010

Menu Plan Monday~~ November 1st

  • Homemade beef barely soup with homemade biscuits.
  • Meatloaf, potatoes with dill, green beans, and brownies.
  • Fried egg sandwiches 
  • Cheesy Alfredo with broccoli 
  • French bread pizzas 
  • Baked chicken with lemon, glazed carrots, and peas with onions. 
Would you like to share your menu for week? Head on over to organizing junkie and join in!!