Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Who Can You Trust?

As our world seems to be falling apart around us, it's scary.

I sat with my almost fourteen year old Sunday night and we talked about the shape of the world...the terrible happenings in Orlando that day, the state of politics, ISIS, agendas and the breakdown of morals and values (AKA...sin...but no body really likes that word, do they?) She asked me, with tears welling up in her eyes, "How much more has to happen before Jesus comes back? I'm scared."

And isn't that the question we are all asking? How much can more can we take? Could this be the end? Who can we really trust?

And as I sat there watching my girl struggle with fear and anxiety I felt my own self getting angry. Angry that our world isn't safe. Angry that the political scene is unstable and immoral. Angry that there are so few people who are trustworthy. Angry that my kids are growing up very aware of ISIS and terrorism. Feeling helpless and if I am honest a little fearful myself, I heard the whisper.

Trust me...

I alone am the fail proof trustworthy one. You can't depend on your government, your servicemen, your guns, your husband or anyone or anything. This is a time to trust in me alone. Trust your kids with me. Trust your safety with me. Trust your cares with me. Trust your government with me. Worry isn't going to get you anywhere. Frustration and fear will only make you anxious. Do not trust in anything but me. You're not in control. You're job isn't to take care of the world. That's mine. I'm the moments that feel scary and out of control....I am there. I am with you. When you don't understand, I am still trustworthy. When you can't see the next step, I am still trustworthy. When you aren't sure, I am still trustworthy. You can trust. You must trust. In me. 

Psalm 20:7 - Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we will trust in the name of the Lord our God. 

I Corinthians 1:25 - For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength. 

Isaiah 41:10 - So do not fear, for I am with you, do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. 

And sitting there with Savannah, I reminded us both what God was whispering to my heart. Trust God...He is in the middle of all our messy world. He gave His son to die for this...for ISIS, for every politician, for the LGBT community, for you, for me. Trust in your history with Him. Trust in His strength and His wisdom. Don't live in fear...that's what the enemy wants. Trust His grasp...He's holding you in his right hand.

But the enemy wants you to think that this is shallow thinking. That this all sounds so pie in the sky happy and that it doesn't solve the world's great problems. The enemy wants you to think that trusting God is for the good kids, the weak mommas, the naive, the simple, even the lazy. The enemy wants you to think that only the real life changers get out there and do anything, that only the real movers and shakers are in the middle...shouting their beliefs high on the mountaintop of social media, blogs and Fox News. But let me remind you....God makes the weak strong, God says fight the fight in your war rooms. God says put on your spiritual armor. God says get on your knees and fight the battle. God says, pray believing...pray trusting me...pray having faith that I am going to take care of my my way. Pray knowing you're not going to understand everything. Pray humbling yourself in gratitude that you don't have to have all the answers....Pray and defeat the evil. Quit believing that others have the answers. Start believing. Start trusting. In Him.

So when you kiss your little ones or teenagers or your spouse goodnight tonight...and you feel that apprehension hover over you for a God. When you send your kid off to summer camp and you wonder if they will get hurt or be homesick or be God. When you send your 18 year old off to college, war or their first job ...what other choice do we have??? Trust Him!!! We need to drill it into our hearts and minds that the safest place we can be is a trusting place. We've got to believe that trusting Him is always the first best thing to do. We need to believe with unwavering belief that He is our best resource, our best defense, our best confidant and our best first choice.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Easy Crockpot Ribs Recipe

If you are looking for something super easy to make for dinner, check out this yummy rib recipe:

Ribs (I used 2 packages of boneless pork ribs)
2 quarts apple juice (or enough to cover the ribs in the crockpot)

Place the thawed ribs in the crockpot. Cover generously with apple juice. Set crockpot on medium for 4-6 hours. They will be close to falling apart. Using tongs, take them out of the crockpot and place on a cookie sheet. Preheat oven to 350. Slather those ribs in your favorite BBQ sauce and place them in the oven to crisp up a bit. About 20 minutes.

Remove from the oven and enjoy the goodness.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Tucker's Dating Advice

Our church is hosting a Parent's Night Out for Valentines. 

Tucker (age 10) has some dating advice for those men who will be taking their lovely ladies out...I thought I'd share ...more for my enjoyment (and memory) than anyone else!

1. Drop the kids off at church.

2. Go out to eat someplace nice. Not McDonalds. 

3. After you eat...if the meal was good...give each other a hug.

4. Then go to someplace like Braums for ice-cream. 

5. If you are not married this is when you have to take your date home. 

6. If you are married, go home, get in your comfy clothes, sit on the couch and watch a romantic movie. You should pop some popcorn too. Try not to fall asleep.

7. Don't forget the still have have to pick them up from the church!

Monday, February 8, 2016

Part of Your Story

There are a few things in my past that I hate to include as part of my story. Things I am not proud of. Things that embarrass me. Things that I know have hurt me and those around me. I am not talking about sneaking and watching Children of the Corn when I was 11 or wearing culottes skiing in high school or even the time I wore my moms dress to school when I was in the 7th grade (she was out of town). While these are all things I would like to forget and certainly weren't among my shining moments, they pale in comparison to other shame-filled parts of my story.

Recently as I was reading the genealogy of Jesus, I noticed that both Tamar and Rahab were mentioned by name as part of Jesus' lineage. Both were harlots, prostitutes. And I wondered about why God would want them included in His Word and especially in the beautiful gospels telling of His precious son's birth.

Was it because He knew there would be those of us who were so spotted that we would need to know that God uses all kinds of people to accomplish His purpose? Was it so we would understand that flawed and imperfect people can be redeemed? Was it so God could prove that no one has done too much or strayed too far to be touched by Jesus? Was it so Jesus could share His story with others who had sinned the same way?

I don't know why...but I am sure glad that God found a way to included these women and that in His Word He didn't hide their names or gloss over their portion of the lineage. It was part of Jesus' story. It challenges me to find a way to share all of my story...not just the parts that are pretty and put together...but the parts where Jesus pulled me out of the trash of this world and let me know life with Him is more...more beautiful, more fulfilling, more adventurous, more peaceful, more honest, more loving....more than I could ever imagine.

Instead of letting Satan tell us we aren't good enough because of our past, let's find ways to bring glory to God by telling others how He saved us from ourselves! Satan and his forces have robbed us of enough..God ordered your story and although those parts that we are ashamed of can drag us down if we focus on ourselves, those same parts can lift our Lord up by sharing with others what a compassionate, long-suffering, faithful God we serve. We don't have to live in shame anymore! We have victory because of what HE has done! Now that's worth sharing!

Saturday, February 6, 2016

Flying Birds and Wafers

Can you imagine if God said He was going to supply your nourishment needs by sending flying birds in such abundance every morning that you'd be able to reach out and grab them? And that He'd send wafer like crackers to fall on the ground every morning so that you had enough for food for the day? You might have a hard time believing Him. But that's exactly what He did for the Israelites. He provided for them daily...every single time they needed food or water, He made a way. He used Moses' rod as an instrument to turn bitter waters to sweet and rocks to dessert streams. What an amazing God!

And you'd think after He'd done all that the Israelites would have been in awe...that they'd be overflowing with praise and worship of their God. That they'd be convinced that He was the real deal. Faithful. Loving. Present. Provider. And yet, time after time after time, guess what they did? Yep, they complained.

Complained that Egypt was better. That God has brought them out of enslavement to leave them in the dessert and die. They complained that the food was better, the water was cleaner, pharaoh was a better leader and that the pasture was greener in Egypt. And don't you know Moses and God were tired of hearing it!

I wonder if God ever tires of hearing His children whine and complain. Our houses aren't big enough, our bodies are not pretty enough, our children are not good enough, our bank accounts are not large enough, our cars are not nice enough and the list could go on and on. And yet every single day He provides figurative quail and manna for us...He gives us everything we need.

Complaining goes hand in hand with discontentment. Two ugly sins that influence other areas of our lives. If I'm whiny...I'm giving others around me permission to whine. If I am discontent, nothing will ever truly satisfy...there will not be a house big enough, a car nice enough, a husband smart enough. Because I am looking at others as if they are the problem when really the problem is me. I am not satisfied with God's provision for me. I am not content with the quail and manna He has chosen and provided for me. When I complain, I'm telling God I don't think that He's orchestrated my life correctly...maybe I don't think He knows what He's doing.

But His Word tells me differently. He has provided for my every need. He knows my steps. He desires good things for my life. He has made a way. Every good and perfect gift is from Him. He places value, not in things, but in people. He is sovereign. He knows what He's doing. All I need to do is trust. He's got this. Today, tomorrow and forever.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

17 Seconds of Obedience

Our Australian Shepherd , MAKS, keeps things lively around our house. Between his infatuation with our calico cat and his fake starvation techniques, the dog keeps us hopping. There's also the little fact that he's huge and that normally his breed enjoys the outdoors way more than veggin' on the couch.

This week Savannah decided to try some obedience training with MAKS. Until now, MAKS has been regulated to the sun room, kitchen and dining room area. This is largely due to his urge to pee inability to refrain his excitement when anyone new enters the house. We've crate trained him and taught him to sit but "stay" has been a challenge. So Savannah decided to really work with him on Wednesday. So we took the baby gate down and told him to stay and then she walked to the piano room at the front of the house. The first time MAKS lasted 7 seconds before we heard his paws tippy toe down the hallway. The second time it was 13 seconds. We were so proud of him. And the third time, 17 seconds...and that time he was so reluctant to disobey. He peaked around the corner and made eye contact with me...and he knew he was guilty! 17 seconds...that's it..that's all the dear pup could muster...just 17 seconds of loyal obedience.

And before I could stop shaking my head, I thought of how I am so often the same way. I can walk in obedience for about 17 seconds and then God must shake his head at me and wonder what in the world I am doing. 17 seconds of obedience. 17 seconds of being loyal to the one who cares for me regardless of how I behave. 17 seconds of keeping my eyes fixed on Jesus. 17 seconds of unabandoned fear and timidity. 17 seconds of bravery...completely free to obey.

And then I get distracted...much like my dog....something comes my way looks like a better option, or someone calls for my attention, or I focus on something that makes me feel better or more fulfilled or more important. 17 seconds more or less is all any of us obey if its not complete obedience. Because not obeying is disobeying and we are all experts from birth on that.

But He is full of grace and patience for me. He knows my heart and how I truly want to be obedient and loyal. But how often I become like Jonah or the Children of Israel who also had trouble getting passed those 17 second marks of obedience. And in like fashion, He corrects me, and sets me back on the right track and loves me unconditionally. Just like He does for all His children.

So if you ever find yourself at the 17 second on...the test is worth passing! But in case you've already crossed over the line of obedience, know that with arms wide open He wants you back. In a heartbeat. And He says, try, try again...with HIS strength you can do better!

Monday, January 11, 2016

FB- You don't know me.

So Facebook posted this cute little greeting to my feed tonight:

And I immediately laughed out loud....

Because, I'm allergic.

I don't mean "I don't like football"...I mean "I don't watch it...ever". Like never. EVER. I haven't managed to stay awake or interested in a football game in my entire life....not a playoff, not a Super Bowl, not a Georgia game or a TN game or a TX game, not a pee wee or high school game. Not even the snacks could keep me interested.

I've attended many functions that football was the focus...parties and playoffs...but most of the time I was in the kitchen chopping up some veggies to go with some kind of awesome dip or I was holed up in the stairwell reading a book or hanging out with the toddlers in the toy room.

I don't understand the rules, the costumes uniforms, the urge to be body slammed on the ground, the pay....I just don't get it.

And that's ok because there's always gonna be the need for someone to be in the kitchen, check on the kids, put the toilet paper on the holder properly and refill the chip bowl. I can be that person.

I know...I know...some of you are about to can't fathom that I could be content to stay in my football free bubble. You think I am missing something important...But it's good here...people aren't chest bumping, over celebrating, getting concussions, sharing locker room stories or smells....I'm good, really.

So Facebook...thanks for the 411. You're too kind to invite me into the football madness. Thanks for including me with the masses. But, I'm not going to be checking the scores or watching replays or listening to commentary tonight...Maybe one day (probably never)....but for now...I'm allergic.


Saturday, January 9, 2016

What to do on dark days...

Dark days come...and more are's in the Bible y'all. In this world you will have trouble, sorrow, heartache, hurt...but listen to this....all the way...seriously...turn it up loud...listen to it again and again and encouraged.

Friday, January 8, 2016

Truth Wall

Our 2015 was rough...and when I say rough I mean that we started it out going to a counselor because after 40+ years there's no way you don't need to talk to someone. Seriously. I heartily recommend it! Go before you really need it...which might seem weird...but we avoided making some pretty big mistakes and we were consumed with encouragement by seeking wise counsel. I'm forever grateful for the good Biblical counsel that we received.

Anyhow...but just because you go to counseling.....doesn't mean your problems or heartaches go away...and so even though we were coping better, we were still struggling. But struggling is good...because it means you haven't given up...that you're still fighting...that you want something more...that you have it in your heart to dream again and to believe there is something better ahead..something to live for...

But those in between times can be brutal. And the enemy can feed your soul with lies. Lies, lies, lies.

- You're not good enough
- No one cares
- No one understands
- God can't hear me
- I am invisible
- I can't do anything right
- I'm worthless
- I'm defeated
- couldn't be asking this of me?

You could probably even add a few more of the enemies tricks and lies. He's so full of them.

So I saw these beautiful feature walls on pinterest (go ahead...go search if you're feeling curious) and I knew I wanted to start out 2016 focused on TRUTH. And I wanted my family to have a home that was grounded in the beauty and strength of God's Word. Because for us...and really everyone in the whole wide world...the only place real truth is found is in God's Word.

So I asked for a gift card to Hobby Lobby for Christmas (AKA the Christian Craft Capital) and combined it with a birthday gift card I received last year and I headed out to see what I could find.

$75 worth of gift card purchases later and I came home with this stash of truth goodies. Did I mention wall art was 50% off the day I went shopping...Did I mention I got to go shopping all by myself (that's a blog for another day...but momma' know what I'm talking about!)

So today I came home from school and in less than 20 was all on the wall. Verses and phrases and truths that I want to ingrain into my head. Truths that will be true 20 years and an eternity from now. I want to write them on my children's hearts and remind them of the solid ground they can stand on no matter what the world throws at them. I want to encourage my husband make home a place he recharges with truth after giving himself away day after day after day. 

And the finished project looks like this...

And I love love love it! I almost can't quit looking at it! I'm praying it will encourage my family to be joyful, and grateful and loving and peaceful and to remember that Jesus is the only thing they need to accomplish any of those things.

So...if you were making a truth wall, what would you want on it? I'd love to hear your ideas.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Vomit and Doggy Gas- When the Day Doesn't End Right

School started back today.

So, on Monday I wanted to get the house in order, get all the Christmas decorations back to the attic, groceries bought, cars cleaned out, laundry done, meals get the picture. I had even prepared the family for the epic post holiday clean-up. They were enthusiastic  less than thrilled with the agenda...and even imagined to get themselves a spend the night away from home invitation from some really good friends. So, being a reasonable mom, I said "yes" to the invite and that dad would pick them up at 10am to get started on chores. 

We worked hard...but I tell you...even working hard we didn't get it all done. My kitchen table is covered in Christmas decorations and the washing machine still has a load of towels in it.

And then school started back today ...and I managed to get dinner in the crockpot before I left the house at 6:45am...and lunches were packed and my class was sweeter than ever today, and I even exercised after school....(can I get a fist pump??) and I drank 6 bottles of water and if you know me that's a huge accomplishment....and things were going along smoothly....until...

Tucker threw up. I'm telling you this kid throws up more than any kid I know. And he's requesting grape medicine and saltines. And now I am suffering through an episode of The Flash with Tucker and the dog curled up next to me. And while this might all be sweet and I am sure I will look back on this with loving and fond sentiments...I can't get the smell of vomit out of my nose...and I'm pretty sure the dog has gas...And in this moment, it's sort of hard to remember all the good that happened today.

And isn't that just like the enemy...helping us focus on the bad rather than the good. Helping us to be negative instead of positive. Helping us see half empty instead of half full. Helping us to wonder where God is in the midst of the less than appealing. Helping us to think we know get believe there was a better way. And so we have a fight off the enemy with the Word of God, or to let the enemy get the let Satan devour the good, the profitable, the true, the good report or to proclaim victory in the places that God has delivered us. 

God is on our side. We can't let a little vomit or doggy gas rob us of the victories He has won for us. God is on our side. No amount of laundry or crowded kitchen tables can rob us of the joy of the Lord. 
God is on our side. We won't let Monday's, tornados, cancer or lay offs keep us trusting Him.
God is on our side. We aren't going to let temper tantrums, toddler messes, houses that won't sell or teenage attitudes delay our responses of gratitude each day.
God is on our side. We will protect our marriages, we will train our children, we will stand up and speak up.
God is on our side. We will trust. We will pray. We will focus. We will live in truth.  

Satan will not win. He will not rob us. He will not kill us. He will not destroy us. He is defeated. He has been conquered. He has been undone, by the blood of Jesus Christ. We don't need to be afraid or skittish or wondering if He has this day or any other day covered. He does. End of story.

So if your today ended up looking a little different than you anticipated...remember...we know the one who goes before us, He knows us by name, He is not surprised, He is familiar with our story....He wrote it. Trust the author. He knows how this ends. 

Simply Tuesday

Currently this book sits on my nightstand. And it should yours too....not that I'm trying to tell you what to read, but if one of your goals this year is taking in the small moments and slowing down...then I am TELLING need this book.

I realized in October, when basically I bottomed out, that life is not more productive, better, more applaudable (is that a word?), more noticed or more the fast lane....except maybe more stressful. In a nutshell, God basically laid me flat on my back for about 2 weeks and made it impossible for me to "do". And if you know me, then you know this didn't come without a struggle. And so, I had a lot of time to really assess how I was running through life...From one activity to the next...doing lots of good things, but wearing myself thin. Don't get me wrong...I loved what I was doing...teaching, church, family, piano lessons, volleyball with Savannah and all the in-between things moms do. But I was tired. And no doubt I was...the lab results would soon prove I had reason to be.

And that's when I remembered this book that was released last year. I had wanted to read it...see I want to live that simple life of taking in the moments...the ordinary moments...the nothing fancy, nothing special...everyday moments. The conversations and the relationships that I had missed out because I was running from this to that....I didn't want to miss them...but I did. But no more.

God values hard work...and to be truthful...I am glad...because I am a hard worker. But I guess I kidded myself into thinking that God valued work over rest. And that's a lie. God wants our best...and when we are running on empty, we can't give Him our best. In His creation plan He worked in that we should take a day of rest, a day to stop the presses and to breath deeply of His goodness, to worship, to stand in awe of God himself. He gave us a plan to have the energy we would need...if we would follow the plan.

And I haven't been good at following this plan. But I want to do better. And that will only happen if I learn how to slow it down and take the built in time God allows to rest, rejuvenate, recharge, worship and enjoy the simple. So I am going to educate myself on ways to enjoy the slow, to drink in the mundane, to sit and be still, to worship in ways other than at church.

I hope you'll pick up this gem if you find yourself in the same place as me. God's way is always best. He always provides a way for us. We don't have to prove ourselves...sometimes it's ok to just be. It doesn't mean we are means we've found a way to enjoy the small, the ordinary, the beautiful details that He meant for us to embrace...along with all the other things He has for us to do...the work and the necessary and the responsibilities He's given us. He's a God of order and purpose and a God who rested...not because He was tired, but because He was setting an example for us to take care of ourselves and to pause.

I'd love to hear how you rest best...if you've got a great idea...share it in the comments section.

Happy Reading!

Monday, January 4, 2016

Christmas House Tour....Better Late than Never!

This post is for my mom mostly. I understand if you don't want to read on...but if you do...I'm cautioning you that what you are about to see could be startling to you if you have an aversion to dust bunnies, imperfections and bad photography.

Christmas decorations came late to our house this year for many reasons...but once they came I was pretty pleased with how they looked. And this year Christmas was for our family. Usually we have lots of company in but I've been pretty sick and just didn't have the energy for it this it's kind of doubly nice that things turned out so nice since we were home more than usual.

My favorite room of the house...and favorite tree ever...Frazier  Fir

I made this wreath with things picked up at the Christmas Store in Gatlinburg

This tree is from Debbie's (Bruce's sister) wedding. 

Silver and Blue ornaments collected through the years

Just pretty

Family Tree with all homemade and children's ornaments
(complete with 1980's wallpaper in the background...put that on my to do list!)

I love how the light hit the crystals in this wreath

My dessert cart...which was given to me earlier in the year.
Cleaned up and ready for pie!

So, gradually things are getting back into place...and cleaned up. Real life is about to kick in!

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Why I Go To Church

I read a statistic that 54% of people are interested in increasing their relationship with God in 2016. This could be because of unsettling things that are happening in the world, or just the new year with more thought turning towards things that are important or eternal or it could be that mankind is looking to fill the large size hole in life that only God can fill. But whatever the case...chances are these people will be looking toward the church (the people or the building) in some way to figure something out about their walk with God. So this statistic got me to thinking a little about why I go to church.

So, you that know me might be chuckling...Duh,'re the pastor's wife, you gotta go to church. But as true as that might be...that's not why I go...because if you only knew...sometimes because I am the pastor's wife, I don't want to go. Sometimes I'm tired, sometimes I am hurt by others, sometimes I need a break, sometimes I don't like the hypocrites (lol), sometimes I'm spent. Just like you. Just because I have a sweet little title doesn't make it different...sometimes I just don't want to go.

But I still do. 

Not because I have a legalistic husband who demands my presence, not because I feel guilty for missing, not because I can't be replaced. No...I still go because God says go...He says go because you will find strength and encouragement together as the time of my return gets closer. He says don't forget, don't forsake, don't neglect the body of Christ. (Hebrews 10:25)

I have experienced the great benefits of being faithful to God's house and His people. Things like deeper relationships, feeling God's presence as it moves through the congregation, hearing the congregation sing out their praise and worship, watching people serve in humility one towards the other, experiencing forgiveness and grace when I fail someone and returning that forgiveness and grace when people fail me. I go because I know me....I know the woman who needs to hear God's Word regularly, I need to collectively worship with my family (both blood related and not), I need to humble myself and in the quiet of a service allow God to work in my life. Because...I have not arrived. After 38 years of relationship with God...I still stumble, fall, doubt and fail God. I go to church because the church is Christ's bride and if Christ loves the bride (and He does) then I want to love the church too. I also see how the church is affecting the other organization does as much as churches do for the world. Humanitarian efforts - check, Social issues- check, Spiritual change - check. The church is faithful to put their money where their mouth is. I am proud to be part of my local church and part of what God is doing through the obedience and faithfulness of flawed people willing to walk in grace, humility and love for each other and the world.

I understand why people don't attend church...I do...but that doesn't mean I agree with them. I understand that you can get fed up with leadership and disappointed with people. I understand how good it can feel to stay home and rest and relax on a Sunday morning. I understand the temptation to believe that you are not needed, unimportant and insignificant....because I have felt all those things before....But let me assure you of one thing...these are traps the devil lays for you. Traps to concentrate on yourself, traps to feel neglected, traps to be self-centered. I know...because I've been there. And I've been on the other side too and can assure you that what God has to offer you through your church is far better that the enemy's trap to keep you from there. Is the church perfect? No...largely because people like me attend. Is the church going to meet every need you have? No, that's God's job, not the churches. Is the church going to feed you spiritually? They better...but unless you can make it the whole week on 2-3 meals, I sure hope you can read and feed yourself. Is the church going to disappoint you? Yes. Yes. Yes. The staff isn't perfect, the deacons aren't perfect, the music guy isn't perfect and neither is the nursery worker or the maintenance person. But I don't know too many of these people that aren't trying with all their heart to serve the Lord with their availability and their obedience and their gifts.

So...I'm going to keep going to church...I mean it would be a little weird for me to stay home after writing this article...but it's more because I know that Christ gave His life for the church...and He's coming back for the church...and I want to be with those He loves...His bride...His beloved. I want to be busy being obedient to what He asked His people to do.

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Why We All Need a Fresh Start

Everyone needs a fresh start...

The prodigal child, the distant spouse, the bored housewife, the drug addict, the overeater, the proud, the angry, the disrespectful. 

Let's be real. There's been a time in all our lives when we needed a do-over. And January is a good place to get one. Everyone is busy doing their own self-examination and our shortcomings are being analyzed and new more attainable goals are being written down. It's like a fresh page in a book, or a newly painted wall...clean...spacious...unspotted...perfect. 

And we have the momentum to be anything, do anything, achieve anything....because we have a fresh start...and that feeling of rock-stardom, "I believe I can fly", mentality sends adrenaline pumping through our veins like coffee on a cold winter's day. We are unstoppable. 

For about 5 minutes. That's when it of the kids spills his cereal, husband can't find his keys, you're sure you had your phone in the bedroom, the dog ate the backyard furniture (true story), the garbage disposal smells like rotten eggs (another true story). And any hope of you being the super-woman you are aspiring to be goes down the drain...because our clean page is now spotted with cheerios and smells like egg salad. 

And that's why I love love love this verse --Lamentations 3:23....His mercy is new every day. 

Because we all need a January 1...more than once a year. In fact...some of us need one everyday! And isn't it just like the Lord to know that His mercy would be just what we would need to get through each day...not just New Year's Day! See supermom gets this lavish mercy extended to her just like the prodigal son or daughter. And that man who cut you off in traffic needs new mercy just like your grandmother. No one is immune...we all need it! time...probably today or tomorrow, when you feel the pangs of exasperation flooding your soul..When plans haven't gone according to the planner...or when you're feeling depleted...embrace the mercy for that day...the new mercy...perfectly measured out in the perfect dose for you and me. 

Now if you'll excuse me...something smells like rotten eggs in the garbage disposal....somebody might need some mercy!!!

Friday, January 1, 2016

January Meal List

We spend too much money eating out.

And times are a changin' round here. 

So that can only mean one thing....Momma's meal planning. 

And it's nothing fancy...but if you're a little like me and sometimes just thinking of something different to eat can be the challenge, then take a look and maybe grab a few ideas for January's dinners. 

I am listing these in no particular order. The goal is that we will only eat out once a week. And even though that is still around $150-$200 a month, if you only knew how much we ate out in 2015 you would understand that this is way LESS and you might even give me a fist pump. I'd love to hear what's cooking at your house. Let me know and I might even include it in my February line up. I'll also let you know if anything is a flop...because let's face it...I haven't cook 26 meals in a month ever in my life so I am anticipating that at some point there's a slight chance I will fix something that does not pass the edible test. Don't worry....PB and J is a staple in this house. No one will starve. 

Happy Planning!

1. Spaghetti
2. Lasagna
3. Pizza
4. Tacos
5. Chili
6. Chicken Spaghetti
7. Broccoli Rice Chicken Casserole
8. Roast, Potatoes, Carrots, Onions
9. Hot Dogs
10. BBQ
11. Potato Soup
12. Breakfast 
13. Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup
14. Hamburger Helper - don't judge
15. Turkey Roast
16. Sausage
17. Brisket Tacos
18. Chicken Pot Pie
19. Fettuccine Alfredo
20. Baked Ziti
21. Stew
22. Stuffed Peppers
23. Teriyaki Chicken
24. Grilled hamburgers
25. Crockpot Ribs
26. Nachos Supreme

I will add veggies and salads and the occasional roll or cornbread. If I come across some recipe that is revolutionary I'll be sure to share!