Saturday, September 13, 2014

On my nightstand

Oh, I sure do love a pile of good books!


The Boys in the Boat by Daniel Brown
I bought this book instead of checking it out at the library (as I normally do) because I want to pass it on to my oldest.  I really enjoyed it… perhaps because it’s a true story. Perhaps because it’s set in Seattle.  Perhaps because I enjoy stories from the early 20th century.  Perhaps because I have a daughter who rowed in college.  But mostly it’s because of excellent writing.  You’ll like it even if you have no interest in crew or rowing because the author writes a story that draws you into the character’s lives. I loved his descriptions of life in pre-WW2 America.  Loved it!

Somewhere Safe With Somebody Good by Jan Karon
Jan’s much-awaited Mitford book, the latest in the series, came out this month and I snapped up my copy the day it did.  (What’s happening to me, anyway?  I’m on a regular book-buying binge!)  I just started it last night and I’m already concerned about how Father Tim is handling his retirement – he seems a bit grumpy.  That might sound critical but it’s only because I love him so much.

Soul Keeping by John Ortberg
This latest by Ortberg is still unread on my nightstand but I’m looking forward to it so much.  Since I can't give you a review yet, here’s the publisher’s blurb: 
When is the last time you thought about the state of your soul? The health of your soul isn't just a matter of saved or unsaved. It's the hinge on which the rest of your life hangs. It's the difference between deep, satisfied spirituality and a restless, dispassionate faith. In an age of materialism and consumerism that tries to buy its way to happiness, many souls are starved and unhealthy, unsatisfied by false promises of status and wealth. We've neglected this eternal part of ourselves, focusing instead on the temporal concerns of the world—and not without consequence.

I am in the midst of two bible studies – not something I recommend at all but one started before the other was finished and it couldn't be helped. 

Restless by Jennie Allen
I’m doing this one with my group of 20-something girls.  After our first lesson this week, we all agreed Jennie did a great job talking about how our gifts, our circumstances, our relationships and even our struggles aren’t random.  They can be used by God to bring incredible meaning and significance to our lives.  What leaves us feeling restless, bored and unfulfilled is living in our own comfort zone and trying to stay in control of everything.  I’m looking forward to some great discussion time (excellent questions for discussion are included in the leader kit) this fall with young women who are seeking and who share honestly about their lives.

Daniel by Beth Moore
(I’m laughing because I just noticed the pic I grabbed from Google images is one of a workbook in Spanish)
This has been my third time doing this study. Don’t be impressed by that fact.  As I’m doing my homework, it’s as if I’ve never read any of it before!  In case you aren’t bilingual, the first half (vidas de integridad) of the study covers how to live with integrity in a self-absorbed culture (as you can imagine, the applications are endless) and the second half (palabras de profecía) delves into prophecy and the end times.  This is GOOD stuff.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Cinnamon Leaf Crisps {a re-post}

I'm making these today for my small group bible study girls who are coming over for a taco salad bar and our first meeting for our Fall bible study.  

Leaf Crisps ~ Have A Cup With Me

I was looking for a super easy treat to make with kids that would also count as a fall craft ~ something I could do with my two goofy nieces who love to ‘cook’ and ‘make stuff’ when they come over.  Bonus:  I had everything I needed in my kitchen!

All you need is flour tortillas, butter, cinnamon-sugar and some metal cookie-cutters.  Cut the shapes using the sharp edge of the cookie cutters, brush them with melted butter and dip in a bowl of cinnamon-sugar…

PicMonkey Collage

Bake for about 5 minutes in a 400° oven and…  yum!



Fall Leaf Cinnamon Crisps
(adapted from Pikadilly Charm)

leaf cookie cutters (metal works best)
flour tortillas
cinnamon/sugar mix:  1 tsp cinnamon & 2 Tbl sugar
6 Tbl melted butter

Preheat oven to 400°.  Cut leaf shapes out of tortillas.  Brush w/butter and dip in cinnamon/sugar.  Lay on cookie sheet.  Bake 4-6 min. until crisp!


Monday, September 1, 2014

Welcome Fall!

autumn  haveacupwithme
It really is the MOST wonderful time of the year!  Pumpkin candles and fall décor coming out today.  Ahhh….

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Links I Liked

How Your Biggest Questions Can Save Your Faith
“Mom?” she asks. “Why would God think it’s OK to kill Goliath? Isn’t all murder wrong?”

Going Back to School: The 1970s vs Today
If you could have been one of the kids in that picture, you might laugh with me at this one.  (There is some language in this post.)

23 Things You Need to Know About Oregon Before You Move There
#4 It rains but not as much as you think.

Sexuality and Christian Hope
Maybe the best message I’ve heard on this topic.  Listen online or download to listen later!
Christianity presents a revolutionary view of sex, singleness, and marriage that rejects both traditional and modern conceptions of the purpose of sex.

Soap Under the Sheets for Restless Legs
Have you heard of this?  I know people who swear it works for them.  I am a skeptic.

Long lost photos show what hasn't changed about motherhood in 50 years
The 83-year-old photographer found a box titled "Mothers," filled with beautiful images of women and their children.

More and better words for difficult kids
The biggest impression on children isn’t made by income, nutrition, or quality of education – as researchers had predicted. The most profound effect on a child’s development is made by words. The words of parents.Could this be applied to difficult people?

Tired of this song yet?  Made me laugh...

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Our birthday girl

Today is the day, just one year ago, that this little rascal came into the world...

We celebrated her birthday a bit early this month so that her auntie who has now moved to Montana could be at her party.  On that beautiful Sunday morning in Seattle, we started off the day at church where Hadley was dedicated to God.  She wore a fluffy pink dress and some sweet gold sandals…

The birthday girl had just woken up from a nap here so her cheeks are still rosy and her eyes a bit glazed from sleep!  I ask you... is that a cherub or what?

Proud Mommy and Daddy
Do you see that little dimple on the right cheek of both daddy and daughter?

I love this picture because it captures Biscuit's typical expression…
Why is everyone always fussing over this baby?  What about ME?
Biscuit is always right in the middle of everything, hoping against hope that someone will pay more attention to her.  (Don't worry, she gets LOTS of attention!)

So glad Nana (great-grandma) got to come with us!

I am not sure about this hat thing.

But THAT sure looks good! 

I always love to dig through a good handbag and now I have one of my very own!

This new book is enthralling!  These words are fascinating!

You might think I am sweetly kissing this new dolly but you would be wrong. 
I am trying to bite off the headband.

Spanning four generations

Haddykins is getting ready to walk any day now!  She loves to stand up and pound on anything flat.  Boxes make excellent drums and she is pretty proud of her percussion skills!

I’ll finish up with my favorite shot of the day…

When your tutu rides up and exposes your diaper, the chubby rolls on your legs divert attention.  Oh my heart!


Sunday, August 24, 2014

The UNpublished Good

I just love all the video clips and articles that people are posting on FB, blogs and news sites about folks who do incredibly unselfish things for others.  The guy who gives a stranger his carThe one who spends every Sunday cutting hair for the homeless.  Or the 99 year old woman who sews dresses for little girls in Africa.

After all, it’s not hard for depression to set in if you watch the news very often.  But there are so many incredibly wonderful people in this world – and I need to remember that when I start thinking the whole world is only full of evil.

All of these great stories have me thinking that I need to be much more intentional about doing good.  Then my thoughts go something like…

What could I do that would make a big impact like some of the people in these stories? 
Who could I help in a big way? 
Surely there are more important things I could be doing.

As my mind wanders along those lines, God reminds me...  Doing good doesn’t have anything to do with making a BIG impact and it certainly isn’t about being recognized for it.  It doesn’t tend to be flashy or fancy or impressive.  In fact, doing good is most often mundane, ordinary and inconvenient

Please Help
In our digital age, it’s not unusual for someone’s good deed to be filmed and posted for everyone to see.  But God knows that anonymity is really best for us.  Doing things that are seen only by the Father is some of the highest, biggest, most important good we can ever do.

Here’s a quote I love from Hinds Feet on High Places (which I first read in 1978 so it’s a memory from my ancient past – time to reread this one!):

"The little wild flowers have a wonderful lesson to teach.  They offer themselves so sweetly, confidently and willingly, even if it seems that there is no one to appreciate them... 

All the fairest beauties in the human soul, its greatest victories and its most splendid achievements, are always those which no one else knows anything about, or can only dimly guess at.  Every inner response of the human heart to love and every conquest over self-love is a new flower on the tree of love.  

Many a quiet, ordinary and hidden life, unknown to the world, is a place of delight where the King of love Himself walks and rejoices with His friends.  Some of My servants have indeed won great visible victories and are rightly loved and reverenced by other men.  But always, their greatest victories are like the wild flowers - those which no one knows about."
                                                                                          ~Hannah Hurnard

Like the guy who stopped to tie an elderly man’s shoe in the grocery store… he had no idea someone would take a picture of his kindness.

Lord, help me to love and give and do good and especially when no one but You will ever know.  Help me conquer my love for Self by quietly loving others.  Let my motivation be You and not the recognition or thanks I might get.  How amazing to think about my hidden life being a delight to You!  I want that.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

God was showing off all weekend

Ps8 HaveACupWithMe
God’s creative power shows up all around me, everyday.  It’s in every sunrise.  It’s in the purple weed-flower poking up through a crack in the driveway.  It’s in the glimpse I get of my husband’s profile that makes me catch my breath to realize what God has done for me in my marriage. 

But sometimes when I get away from my ‘normal’ He overwhelms me. 

We were at the beach this last weekend and clouds were in the forecast.  That’s completely normal for the Oregon coast and it didn’t bother me one bit since our temps have been stuck in the 90’s for much of August.  It doesn’t matter that it’s cloudy if you’re at the ocean. 

But we had sunshine and blue skies every day!  We spent three nights sharing a cabin - The Glory Be - with our old friends.  We laughed, we ate, we did a jigsaw puzzle, we walked on the beach, we read, we reminisced, we shopped, we drank coffee, we told stories on each other, we played Zilch.  At night we made a campfire on the beach and made s’mores.

The darker it got, the more stars appeared in the heavens above us until there were a gazillion points of light.  The Milky Way washed across the sky from one end to the other.  It was absolutely stunning.  I don't have a picture but even if I did, it wouldn't do justice to what we witnessed as we tipped back in our chairs with our chins in the air and our mouths open. Sydney brought her guitar and we sang to the Creator under that incredible canopy of light.

It’s falling from the clouds, a strange and lovely sound
I hear it in the thunder and the rain
It’s ringing in the skies like cannons in the night
The music of the universe plays

Singing You are holy, great and mighty
The moon and the stars declare who You are
I’m so unworthy but still You love me
Forever my heart will sing of how great You are

Beautiful and free, the song of galaxies
Reaching far beyond the Milky Way
Let’s join in with the sound, come on let’s sing it out
As the music of the universe plays

All glory and power is Yours, Amen!
~Phil Wickham

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