Wednesday, April 28, 2010

If the shoe fits

It's like a persistent knocking on the window... it can't be ignored. Sometimes it's a Sunday school lesson followed by a sermon from the same chapter and verse.

Or maybe a conversation out the blue about what I just finished reading in my personal time with God. (How could that person know?)

Anytime something is repeated within a short time span, I know it's time to sit up and take note.

This time, it started with the devotions at a wedding shower on Saturday.

Keep your eyes on God was the theme. For better or worse... richer or poorer... in health and sickness... keep your eyes on God.

Sunday morning, the first verse of my Psalm for the week - Unto thee lift I up mine eyes, O thou that dwellest in the heavens.

As my week is unfolding, there are things. Just little things... minor irritations.

Keep your eyes on God.

A slap in the face... a thoughtless remark...

Unto thee lift I up mine eyes, O thou that dwellest in the heavens.

I'm quite sure those devotions weren't just for the bride-to-be. If the shoe fits...

And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear. Isaiah 65:24

Friday, April 23, 2010

Too much fun

The love affair with hand carved stamps continues. This one makes me happy.

The bones are borrowed from a vintage greeting card.

I grabbed the nearest piece of paper for a quality check of the stamp (obviously not noticing the background!) The color is from watercolor pencils and copic markers.

The "coloring" needs some perfecting, but overall, I like the stamp. It's homey and friendly. That's a good thing.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord for ever. Psalm 23:6

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Happy mouths

Want to see happy mouths around the table? Here's a crock pot meal that will fill those empty caverns. It may not be fine dining, but it's tasty... quick... satisfying... quick... requires one mixing bowl... did I mention quick?

Marcie art
This is the recipe.

Crock-Pot Tamale Pie

In a large bowl mix together:
3/4 cup yellow cornmeal
1 cup beef broth
Let this stand 5 minutes.

Stir in:
1 lb. lean ground beef (that's right! You don't even have to brown it!)
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 (14-16 oz.) jar thick and chunky salsa (you choose the level of heat)
1 (16 oz.) can corn, drained
1/4 cup sliced ripe olives, optional

Pour this mixture into a 3.5 quart slow cooker. Cover and cook on low for 5 hours, or until set.

Sprinkle 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese on top; cover and let the cheese melt (about 5 minutes). Makes about 6 servings.

There it is... dinner! I have not tried doubling the recipe. If you do, let me know how it turns out.

If thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. Romans 10:9

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Fabric paper

Some things you have to do just because... well, just because. This is one of those projects.

Fabric paper... it can be cut, ripped, painted, and sewn - and that's only the beginning. About the only "don't do this" I have seen refers to washing it.

Last week, I finally had all the parts and a free afternoon to get all gluey, so I made a few pieces of my own fabric paper.

Now I know:
-have more piles of bits and scraps
-fling the paint with abandon
-use white tissue paper (although the pattern tissue does give an interesting tea stained tint)
It was fun. Can't wait to see how I'll use it.

Credit where credit is due - Beryl Taylor developed this. I found it in the Cloth Paper Scissors magazine.

In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth... And God saw everything that he had made, and, behold, it was very good... Genesis 1:1 and 31

Friday, April 16, 2010

Survival - pt.2

If these plants/trees maintain their healthy glow... so will we!

Mulberry tree, full of budding branches. The highlight of June for birds and grandkids.

Cherry tree.

Peach tree.

And the rhubarb. Is there anything better than Rhubarb Crunch? Mmm-mmm-mmm!

The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise. Proverbs 11:30

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Survival of the fittest

I am not a gardener. My brown thumb kills plants on contact. Anything that survives in my yard? Well, that's noteworthy!

Imagine my surprise when I walked through the front yard this afternoon and found color, life, fresh growth! I have to share. Not just because they are so beautiful... because the world should know about these plants. They grow! In my yard!

Today the inedibles... (except for cropping, SOOC)

Tomorrow - edibles!

The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand forever. Isaiah 40:8

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Books, wonderful books!

I have been buying books.

In the usual book store setting, there are consumers standing, kneeling and/or sitting in between shelves as they leaf through stiff new books. Music plays softly in the background. The loudest voices belong to people ordering a latte - or some other beverage bearing a five word name.

But wait! There is another world of books out there. Surrounded by tattered VHS boxes and just across from the used shoes (nose plugs, please), you can find old books, new books, autographed memoirs and antique beauties. They are all for sale... often for the change in your pocket.

Last week, while wandering through antique stores and thrift shops, I acquired this mountain of words.

With every book, I flipped through the pages to make sure it was what I wanted. I knew that there was crayon in the textbook and that the spine on the dictionary was coming off.

But, flipping does not tell the entire story. Imagine my surprise to find these...

tucked into the pages of the ancient dictionary.

I really got my $1.20 worth, didn't I?

Open thou mine eyes, that I may behold wondrous things out of thy law. Psalm 119:18

Saturday, April 10, 2010

What happened, you ask?

Yes... this was the week. The reception for the postcards. The time of gathering together under one roof, creators and inspectors, sellers and buyers, tension and tranquility.

With my daughter-in-law by my side, I survived. We arrived woff*, shopped woff*, sipped juice woff*, and celebrated with gooey rich desserts when it was all over.

One of my postcards was displayed in the center of the main wall, neighbor to a portrait of a woman sans clothing. (I wondered if that was some one's idea of equal time.) I am happy to report that the lady is gone (sold), the Bible verse remains. A testimony to the holding power of scripture.

Confession time - Am I disappointed that all four of my submissions are still hanging? I was... until the Lord reminded me it's not about you. It is all about scripture on that wall.

I'm glad I did it. It pushed me wa-a-ay out of my comfort zone into untried waters. And I didn't drown! Thank you for every "How're ya doing on those postcards?" You pushed me forward when I wanted to give up.

Been there. Done that. I wonder what will be next?

O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps. Jeremiah 10:23
*woff - without fanfare

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Grampa's candy hunt

After the Easter service at church and the Easter dinner at home, we settled into a family activity that has become a tradition... Grampa's candy hunt. He carefully loads our "acre and a third, m/l" with chocolates (mostly) and assorted hard candy. The grand kids, armed with bags, comb the grounds in search of the treasure. Then, there is a super prize - this year a solid chocolate bunny for the person who spotted the half dollar coin hidden in the yard as well.

It would seem that this many people, searching for candy in one backyard could find every thing, right?

Oh, how wrong you are.

Imagine my excitement. Tuesday, I'm surveying the garden, contemplating the work to get it ready for planting season. In the droopy, long grass at the fence line, I spy this...

Chocolate! Mmmmmm.

Knowing how interested all of you would be in my moment of chocolate pleasure, I wait to open it until I have carefully recorded this with my camera.
Finally the moment has arrived.

I open the egg... ugh. Double ugh. Jolly Ranchers.

They are still sitting on the counter. Good thing Easter is about so much more than candy - right?

For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures. I Corinthians 15:3,4

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Spring break 2010

It was our version of spring break. (Shouldn't empty nesters have a spring break too?)

Thank you for asking... we went to Pennsylvania. It was great. We visited lots of restaurants (some for the first and last time), stayed in a different hotel every night (we would revisit most of them), but mostly, we just sucked in the spring air. After our long hard winter, we couldn't enjoy it enough.

This is what winter does to Michiganders.

It's easy to spot a sun and color starved soul. She's the one standing in the middle of a downtown sidewalk, taking pictures up into a tree.

It was just good to see green!

It's also good to come home and find the daffodils in full bloom, the cherry tree sprouting some leaves, signs of fresh, new life all over the yard.

Life really is good.

I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. Galatians 2:20