Saturday, January 8, 2011

I wish Birthday's would last a month

I Turned the Big 39 on Saturday! I know I know...Its realitivly young...or that's what people over 50 tell me. But to me... Not so much.

I mean I remember when My parents turned 40...They weren't young. I thought they were OLD!

I keep asking my children if they think I'm old and they keep kindly telling me "NO"!!

I don't know if that means that I just need to grow up and start acting my age or if it's okay that I'm not.

The year I turned 29 was remarkably different from my birthday ten years later. I had a 1, 3, and 5-year-old. And I was up to my ears in diapers, bottles, tantrums,library visits,laundry, Snotty noses,homeschooling,disciplining,trips to the park, lack of sleep, loss of self interests, and a simple hour alone.

While I Loved, Loved being a mom to 3 little munchkins I was going through an early "mid-life" of sorts...wondering what I had really accomplished in my 20's. And I wondered at how 30 had descended upon me with such rapid speed. I felt stripped of my youth and my body had changed with the birth of each child. I was grieving leaving my 20's and uncertain about my future.

But 30 came and went and I lived. In the past 10 years I have had one more child and entered a new season of having days where I see no living soul for up to 6 hours at a time. I have achieved some things that I wanted to accomplish. But more importantly when I look at my 30's I think of it as the decade of

God's Touch.

His handprints are all over it... in my children's sweet hugs and kisses, to his tender promises lovingly scrawled all over his Word. From new friendships that have grown strong to relationships that he has redeemed. From his soft stirrings in my soul to the longings he has met. I have seen him through unanswered prayers, that would have been toxic to my soul. And I have felt him when I was a mess on my closet floor. He gently held me and whispered his truth to my heart. I have looked at him in my husbands eyes as he reminds me that his love for me is stronger than ever. I have touched the hem of his garment while I have called out his name in the dark night. I have tasted his goodness in the valleys and on top of the mountains. I have felt his presence in my fingers as I scribble out lyrics to a new song.

I am ruined for anything other than his service.

And so as I think of turning 40 next year I am not afraid. I think it will be just fine. I just wonder what this decade will hold....

This birthday was special. It was my last. And next year will be my first.

My sweet thoughtful friend started me with a birthday breakfast...On China!CIMG0109.jpg

And than for lunch 2 more dear friends took me to lunch. And bought me a piece of my Favorite pie....Old Fashioned Cream.

And for dinner we had a dinner date with more friends to this cool place.

Which leads me to ask....Can't birthday's last all month?

On Saturday I had a donut courtesy of my guy and....Rise and Roll

And that was followed up by a massage and facial from 2 of my kiddos.

And than for dinner we took 3 kids and went to this pizza joint in town. It's my favorite pizza...They grill the pizza. Yum!

We were missing Jalen because he was at a friend's birthday party...He told me he thought it would be okay to go since he had already told me Happy Birthday :)

And theses 2 chefs were busy in the kitchen.

Micah told me that he was going to bake me a cake because I have baked his cake for 11 years and it's time I got one. :)

[caption id="attachment_1536" align="aligncenter" width="216" caption="Isn't that Divine? They did an amazing job!"][/caption]

And see that Charm necklace? My sweet friend gave me that...

And to top it all off being on Facebook really gives you a boost on your birthday...So many wishes! It really makes a girl feel happy.

So on to my last year of being 30 something...I want to make it the best yet!

Thanks so much my sweet friends and family for making my day so special!

Asian Chicken spread

For New Year's Eve I wanted to take along a dish that was NEW. So I thought of this yummy spread my sis in law sometimes makes for the holidays.
It's one of those dishes I could take into a room, lock the door, and lick the plate's just tasty.
So I called her. She was on vacation. In Savanna, at Paula Deen's looking at weeping willows and beautiful Old homes. Not that I'm jealous, but Oh My I'd like to go.
So she was so kind to try to recount the recipe over the phone. She didn't have the actual recipe in front of her so
This is what I came up with.
2 pkg. Cream Cheese
1/2 C. Chopped Carrots
1/2 C. Chopped Chicken
1/2 C. Chopped Cashews
Mix the carrots chicken and cashews together and pour soy sauce over this until juicy.

Spread the cream cheese on a plate and then spoon the chicken mixture over that. Glaze with Sweet and Sour Sauce and serve with crackers.

[caption id="attachment_1485" align="aligncenter" width="889" caption="Asian Chicken spread"][/caption]

(Sorry for the blurry Picture!)

This dip? Well, it's one of those things you will want to try before you die.

Remember you have until Saturday to enter my Bath and Body Basket give away..

Christmas and New Years Festivities

What a relaxing Christmas break!

Here are some things we did over the past 2 weeks.

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day were spent with my extended family.

Sledding down the hill...

[caption id="attachment_1470" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Dale is always Amazed by the gift he receives! "]Micah and Landon

The Kids are multiplying..... Not from having more babies....Other ways....Multiplying.

We Had Lots of Family time.

[caption id="attachment_1473" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="We built gingerbread houses"][/caption]

And played games...Eucher,Golf,Rook,I doubt it, Take 1.... BOWLING.

We had brunch with some of our dear friends...

[caption id="attachment_1492" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Jacob, Kelsey and Malaina"][/caption]

J and I got free tickets to a Notre Dame Game.

And had Waaaay too many Good things to eat!

[caption id="attachment_1485" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="This was a new dip I made...I will be sharing it with you in another post"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_1486" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="New Year's Eve Party"][/caption]

We stayed up like kids on New Year's Eve...What a blast!

[caption id="attachment_1487" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="Sophie, Kaliee,Jack and Sam "][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_1490" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="5 Seconds to go...."][/caption]

Happy New Year!

To celebrate I tried to make a new dessert....

[caption id="attachment_1488" align="aligncenter" width="300" caption="YUMMO! Jason was more than happy to find a new use for his torch!"][/caption]

It was great..and tomorrow it all ends.

But part of me is glad to have a normal routine again. Although I will miss having Sunday every day!

I do have a house-warming gift for one of you so come back on Tuesday for my give away!

Blessing of promise

There is a story in Genesis about a girl named Dinah. She was the only daughter of Jacob. And some commentaries paint her to be spoiled. She went out to a party and there met a young man, who happened to be the ruler’s son. His name was Shechem and he was very attracted to Dinah.
He took her and violated her. But somewhere in the middle of this he fell in love with her. So in his attempt to make all things right he asked to marry her. He asked his father to help arrange a marriage for him.
Dinah’s brothers Levi and Simeon heard about what had happened. They were furious and deeply troubled by what had happened to their sister.
It may be possible the reason they took such offense was because in those days the blood brothers would take care of their sisters. They felt disgraced, angry that Shechem had violated their good family name.
As Shechems father, Hamor tried to negotiate with Jacob over Dinah, the brothers plotted a plan to take revenge on their sister’s perpetrator. So while they told Shechem he could have Dinah if all the men in his city agreed to be circumcised as the Jews were, they knew exactly what they would do. On the 3rd day when all the men were in great pain from their circumcision Levi and Simeon took their swords and killed all the men of the city.
Their vengeful attitude took over as they focused on their own reputation. And God did not bless them. In fact when he gave the blessing he skipped over the first 3 sons and gave Judah, the 4th son The Blessing.
Was it wrong of the brothers to feel anger or sadness for the wrong that was committed against their sister?
what was wrong was their choice to deceitfully take up a sword after pretending they, in the name of religion, were interested in forgiving and restitution.
Forgiveness is not forgetting the wrongs done to us.
It’s not even granting a pardon.
It is however releasing the wrong-doer to God’s justice.
While we don’t typically take physical swords to avenge, do we use our tongues and words to kill?
Blessing when I am cursed.
Giving when I have received criticism.
Reaching out when I have been ignored.
Praying for those who falsely accuse me.
Am I willing to Learn from the greatest One who Forgave all?
The one who Knew no sin prayed, for the religious leaders, the poor, the rich, the sick, the men and women, for you and for me, as he hung there on that cross, in his last moments of life on earth,
“Father, Forgive them for they do not know what they are doing”. ~Luke 23:34
How can I do anything less?
What is he asking you to give to him today?
Could you open the door of your heart just a crack to let him replace the anger with love? You may always have the scar but you don’t need to carry the poison around one more day.
He promises that if we allow him to take the injustice he will one day make all things right.
The question is... Will I trust him to Do what He says He will do?
It may require Forgiveness every day.
Every Hour.
Every Minute.

But this is the blessing of promise.

Forgiveness is really a gift.

A gift that keeps bitterness from twisting its ugly viney legs around the heart and stealing the song that needs to be sung.

Freeing the spirit to soar above the painful memories of yesterday and releasing the feet that have been stuck in the fears of the Unknown.

To forgive, releases us to become people who fully live in the face of uncertainty.

It breaks the chains that tie us to the offender.

And makes us channels of grace to everyone around us.


God knew we would need it to continue this journey he has set our feet on.