On Eagle's Wings

On Eagle's Wings
He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:29-31

Followers

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

A Restful Hodgepodge

Here are the questions to this week's Wednesday Hodgepodge. Answer on your own blog then hop back over to Joyce tomorrow to add your link to the party. See you there! And thank you, Joyce!


1. Three things on your spring bucket list? If you don't have an actual list that's fine, pretend you do.

To go to the arboretum before the azaleas are gone.
To get a pedicure.
To make a short overnight trip before it's too hot.


2. Where do you find rest?

I would love to sit on the bank of a peaceful river or babbling brook somewhere with my DH, a cup of coffee and a book. This looks like a nice place, as long as there are no snakes, bugs, chiggers, mosquitoes, etc. 


But ... since that isn't possible, I can find rest in my chair with a book or a Bible study.

What restores your soul? That.
When was the last time you did whatever it was you answered here? This morning.
3. April is National Celery Month. Who knew? Do you like celery?
I don't really eat celery much. I only use it for certain recipes, such as tuna salad. What's your favorite dish made with celery? Tuna.
On a veggie and dip platter which would you reach for first-carrot sticks, celery sticks, cucumbers or cherry tomatoes?
Cherry tomatoes.
4. I read here eight things to do before 8 am to make your day less hectic-Start one lload of laundry, drink water, empty the dishwasher, read your Bible, know what you're having for dinner, get dressed, brain dump (two lists-one what you're thankful for and one what's weighing on your mind), and after the brain dump make your to-list for the day

How many of these are you currently doing?
First thing upon arising, I drink a bottle of water, (have a cup of coffee - that should be on the list) read my Bible, and then shower and get dressed. Next stop is down to empty the dishwasher before I fix breakfast. While I empty the dishwasher, I figure out dinner. Often I do the brain dump, but not everyday. It depends on what is going on. At 8, I begin breakfast.

Which one do you think would help the most if you added it to your early morning routine?

I think I should make a habit of doing the thankful list each day. I'm always thankful and vocalize my thanks, but don't always make the list. I journal the "weighing on my mind" items.


5. Describe the view from your window.

When I look out my windows by my favorite chair, I see wide open sky and one of the coves of our huge lake. I get to watch the lake through the seasons of rains and drought, which in the drought time always makes me aware of the precious value of water and not to waste it because the lake is our source of water here. There is also the corps of engineers property, which is nature preserve and no one can ever build there. Main reason being that is the flood area, too. I see wildlife and watch the hawk as it looks out for food. I see birds in flight together swooping down and back up. I have spotted deer, coyotes, bobcats, possums, armadillo and a skunk one day. Last Thursday I saw a wild turkey sprinting at a really fast pace eastward behind our fence. On Friday, he was headed back westward. I feel blessed that I just happen to look out and get to see things like a huge hawk sitting in our fence. During the summer, I see the most amazing sunsets from my window, and in the mornings, I see the sunrise. When storms are on the horizon, I love watching the clouds gather and the lightning light up the sky. There is a neighborhood park behind us, too and I can see and hear children playing and also there are some adults who go there early in the morning to do their morning workout.


6. Insert your own random thought here.

I absolutely love looking out my window.





Monday, April 16, 2018

Monday Musing

I can't remember if it was from someone's blog or Facebook post or a conversation with friends, on the phone, at church ... you know!!! But the conversation I remember had to do with cooking failures and the fact that we don't remember having had those same problems when we were younger. Case in point for me today:

I found what sounded like a wonderful recipe for vanilla cupcakes. Voila! just what I wanted for Jack's birthday. A good vanilla cupcake with chocolate frosting. Simple. So I whipped up those ingredients, followed instructions perfectly, or to the best of my ability, and the batter was so delicious. The first two pans of cupcakes were mighty good, too. 

However, the last pan went very south!

I figured out the problem, though. The batter in the bottom of the bowl did not incorporate with the upper batter, so it consisted mostly of butter, shortening, and sugar. I did find out there is an accessory for that Kitchen Aid mixer I can get which will pick up the bottom of the batter and scrape the sides of the bowl. I had even stirred it all by hand before putting it in the pans. Oh well, none of that sad story bothered anybody else. (Actually, I had to eat five of them for testing purposes.)

Presents!?!! Cupcakes??!!!
I get the first one!


Sporting a new haircut!

All the wait staff sang to him - he was all right with that after the first,
but he DID NOT like them saying Happy Birthday Panchito!!! LOL!!
"My name is not Panchito!!"

He's the cutest even with chocolate on his face!

While we were having dinner, a very kind, elderly gentleman came over to Kate and gave her this little origami bird. Jack was pretty disappointed that he didn't get one, but he was mature about it and then said, "I think he's going back to his table to make me one, too." His mom said, no, I don't think so. 

Jack was right. Pretty soon the man was back with an origami seal that clapped its hands for Jack. He was so pleased and said, I told you so! He thanked the man and then went to the gentleman's table to tell him thank you again and that he knew he was making one for him.

I love you, Jack!

The weather this past weekend was frigid due to the high winds and low temps! Other than me going to a BSF fellowship on Saturday (which was wonderful), there wasn't much to our weekend except for going to church and to meet our kids for the little birthday celebration for Jack. His birthday isn't until next week, but we will be out of town. 


Friday, April 13, 2018

Friday Foto Friends

Good morning! Let's see who all is joining Deb today at Breathing in Grace for Friday Foto Friends. I don't have much to offer so I will share some recent pics and some from the past.


The forecast today is for rain and tomorrow windy and cold. Well, the wind actually has been blowing here forever. Every now and then we get a break from the wind and enjoy a sunny, peaceful day. This is how it looked from my window last April. 






Some days I just happen to look out and catch the strangest things. Yesterday, I stood up to check out what's going on and saw a very wild turkey running to beat the band. There have been so many bobcats recently around here that I thought maybe he was running away from a predator, but never saw anything else. It just wasn't possible to get a picture!

However, I did get a picture the other day of Marie at Ladies of Grace!!


Marie is a diehard chicken fan. She has more chicken outfits than ... well, more than a chicken has feathers!

Need I say more?
Marie is a sweet and fun lady who takes her chicken collection
and chicken illustrations quite seriously!
Oh, and this fun pic was taken at Babe's Chicken House!!

I love this picture. Kate and Annie.


And finally, sky pics from Panama City, Florida.

Happy Friday and Weekend.










Wednesday, April 11, 2018

A Musical Hodgepodge

Thank you, Joyce. It's good to have you back for Hodgepodge, but Wow! on all your great news and stories about the engagement! Congratulations to all your family!


1. April is National Jazz Appreciation Month. Are you a fan? No. If so what's a favorite you'd recommend to someone new to jazz listening? No recommendations here. 
2. Mandolin, ukulele, harp, accordion or banjo...which would you be most interested in learning to play?

From this list, it would be the mandolin, ukulele or banjo. I especially enjoy watching a good mandolin or banjo player. Sonya Isaacs is fabulous on the mandolin and Dolly Parton is amazing on the banjo. And I love singing along with my sis-in-law as she plays her ukulele. 
Or do you already play one of the instruments listed? I wish.

3. Do you judge a book by it's cover? Sometimes. Elaborate. You may answer in either/both the literal or figurative sense of the word.
When looking for a good book to read, I do notice the cover, but first of all, I read what the book is about, I notice who endorses the book, and I read the reviews. When it comes to people, I try very hard to not judge a person that way.

4. According to a recent study the ten most nutritious foods are-almonds, cherimoya (supposed to taste like a cross between a pineapple/banana), ocean perch, flatfish (such as flounder and halibut), chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, swiss chard, pork fat (shocking! but I don't think they mean bacon), beet greens, and red snapper. Are any of these foods a regular part of your diet?

I eat a lot of almonds, I like flounder, but don't get to eat it that often, chia seeds are in my favorite dark chocolate with raspberries and I eat some of that every day. Pumpkin seeds are good and so is Swiss chard.
Any you've never ever tasted? I've never heard of cherimoya, let alone taste it.
Which would you be most inclined to add to your diet?The pumpkin seeds and Swiss chard.
Blech to pork fat! Gross!

5. Besides a major holiday what is the most recent thing you've celebrated with your people? We celebrated our daughter-in-law's birthday.
Tell us how.
We had dinner out with her and the kids. It was very low key, but it was fun. This week, I am hopeful to get to celebrate Jack's birthday, since we will be out of town on his birthday. He will be seven!! Oh my goodness!!

What a fine boy you are! I love you.

6. Insert your own random thought here.

I recently did the ancestry.com test. It was something I had wanted to do for quite some time, but didn't take the steps until my brother, sis-in-law and nephew did it. After checking the mail every day for results, they finally came in. No surprises, but I did find it very interesting to see the percentages of my ethnicity, and the migration of my ancestors.  Anybody else done the test!

And in conjunction with that, yesterday was National Siblings Day. I love mine.




Today is National Pet Day!!

I love you too, Annie.



Monday, April 9, 2018

Weekend Recap

It was frigid this past weekend and am I ever glad my winter clothes were available. Soccer was cancelled and unfortunately, so was my time to spend with Kate at Feed the City this month. I was disappointed about that, but a friend passed away last week and the memorial service was held on Saturday morning. It was a pleasure (that's probably the wrong word choice) to attend not only for the sake of my friend's family, but in sweet memories of our friend, Carlos. What a godly, kind and compassionate man he was and one who could be silly as well. We first got to really know him on our trip to Israel back in 1998. He sat in front of us on the bus and we got to visit a lot. The memorial service was beautiful. He will be greatly missed by everyone who knew him.

When we got home, I baked a chicken pot pie for dinner before church and what a perfect meal that was on a cold and blustery evening.

Sunday morning was church again and afterwards, was a cozy afternoon spent dozing, reading, and that's pretty much it until watching Call the Midwife last night. Sunday afternoon also was just perfect for a Farmer Brown kind of supper - pinto beans, fried potatoes and cornbread!!! We really feasted this weekend. 

So, I always enjoy the month of April when it refuses to let go of winter and doesn't let summer rush in too quickly. There's still time to hide in the house in your sweats and not have to get out and tend to the yardwork!! 

Tasting Snow!!
It's still snowing where she lives!



And these two certainly cozy up together!

Last week, a roofer came to the door to advise us we have quite a bit of roof damage!!! Gee whiz, and just last week we forked out a bunch of dollars for repairs to the Toyota. As I've said before, it seems the last couple of years we have had major expenses and you have to wonder when it will end! Mainly, I remain thankful that we are able to cover them, and I guess it's a good thing I had the carpet cleaned because new carpet may have to wait until next year. My feelings are mixed as to disappointment and relief!

Here is the recipe for the chicken pot pie and as well as the link to the website.

Double Crust Chicken Pot Pie

This double crust chicken pot pie is perfect when you're looking for comfort food and don't have all the time and energy in the world to whip it up! Make sure you check out the step-by-step photos at the bottom of the page, as well as my notes at the end of this recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 1 recipe homemade pie crust*
  • 1 pound skinless boneless chicken breast, cubed
  • 1 cup sliced carrots (about 2 carrots)
  • 1/2 cup sliced celery (about 1 stalk)
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup chopped onion
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 and 3/4 cups chicken broth
  • 2/3 cup half-and-half*
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • sprigs of fresh thyme for garnish, optional

Directions:

  1. Prepare the pie crust as directed in my recipe, including chilling for at least 2 hours. I usually make the crust the night before. The pie crust recipe makes 2 crusts and you'll be using both crusts.
  2. In a large saucepan, combine chicken, carrots, and celery. Add water to cover and boil for 12 minutes. Remove from heat, drain, and set aside.
  3. In a large skillet, cook the butter, onions, and garlic over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Cook until the onions are translucent and the butter is lightly browning. Whisk in the flour, salt, black pepper, thyme, chicken broth, and half-and-half. Cook and whisk until no flour lumps remain, then simmer over medium-low heat until thick. I simmer mine for 10 minutes. You want it to be a very thick gravy; simmer longer if necessary. Taste and add more seasonings if you prefer. Sometimes I add more thyme. Remove from heat and set aside.
  4. Preheat oven to 425°F (218°C).
  5. After the pie dough has chilled: On a floured work surface, roll out 1 half of the chilled pie dough. Turn the pie crust dough about a quarter turn after every few rolls until you have a circle 12 inches in diameter. Carefully place the dough into a 9-inch pie dish. Tuck it in with your fingers, making sure it is smooth. With a small and sharp knife, trim the extra overhang of dough and discard. Place the chicken mixture on top. Top with frozen peas. Pour gravy over top. Roll out 2nd half of pie crust dough just as you did the first. Cover the pie with the 2nd crust and trim the extra overhang off the sides. Seal the edges by crimping with a fork or your fingers. With a small and sharp knife, slice a few small slits in the top crust for steam to escape. Using a pastry brush, brush crust and edges with beaten egg.
  6. Bake for 32 - 38 minutes, or until crust is golden brown. I use a pie crust shield to protect the edges from browning too much too soon. Cool for 10 minutes before serving. Makes amazing leftovers-- the filling is so thick on the next day! Reheat as desired. Leftovers keep well in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
Make ahead tip: Filling and gravy can be prepared 1 day in advance, cover and chill in the refrigerator. Assemble, fill, and bake the next day as directed. The pie crust dough can be made ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator before using. The unbaked OR baked pot pie freezes well for up to 2-3 months. Allow to thaw overnight in the refrigerator and bake as directed or bake to warm through.

Recipe Notes:

  1. Two 9-inch frozen (and then thawed) store-bought pie crusts are just fine instead of homemade. Puff pastry works too.
  2. Heavy cream or whole milk works instead of half-and-half to make an extra rich filling. I wouldn't use lower fat milks; the gravy will be too thin.
This is a wonderful recipe if you have extra meat or leftover veggies to use up. Turkey works wonderfully instead of chicken. You can use precooked meat. Simply skip the boiling and cook the carrots and celery with the onion and butter. Add some corn (frozen or fresh) when you add the peas. Feel free to add 1-2 Yukon gold potatoes, diced. You can cook them until soft with the onion and butter. Mushrooms are great too; you can add 1 cup sliced mushrooms when you cook the onion and butter. I wouldn't add ALL of these veggies though; you will weigh down the pie.
Feel free to add fresh chopped parsley, a pinch of celery seed, or even a little rosemary. As long as there is salt and pepper (definitely thyme too), the extra seasoning in the pot pie is up to you. Taste and season how you like!




Friday, April 6, 2018

Friday Foto Friends

Joining Deb at Breathing in Grace for Friday Foto Friends. So glad to be a part of it today.



Pretty sunset!





So much beauty this time of year.
We don't see fields of bluebonnets in North Texas, but we do see loads of tulips and daffodils.






My cousin went to Africa for a safari. How exciting is that? I never knew there were penguins who don't live in a frigid environment.  (I guess I didn't pay too much attention in science class.)

Thursday, April 5, 2018

A Thankful Throwback Thursday

Four years ago, we flew to Ohio for the wedding of my nephew, Chase and his bride, Julie.


Even more exciting is to have watched the progression of things and see now the sweet little family they have become.






In the space of that four years, four new additions have been made to my brother's family. Congratulations to Phil and Susan, now known as Omi and Poppie. So far, they have Hunter, Lincoln, Tenley and Londyn. Since I think the plan is to continue expanding in the next year or so, my brother and Susan were prompted to buy a bigger house. So congratulations on that one! I rejoice with them. 

I've spent the past three weeks or so studying to teach our Ladies of Grace in the couple of weeks before Easter about the connection between Passover, Easter and Communion. 



It was a very good study and while I knew many things about these topics before, I learned even more in my study. Although I love to study and I really enjoy discipling one on one, it isn't my favorite thing to stand up before a group of ladies and teach. Actually, I don't call it teaching for me, but rather "sharing." One of my best friends and encouragers sent this to me the night before I was to "share".



I have to say His grace was more than sufficient to me throughout this time. I don't take teaching lightly, but it went very well and several people told me they had never known those things before! In sharing about the Passover, a good part of the time was spent leading the group in a Seder which everyone really enjoyed participating in. That was a blessing and made it quite worthwhile. Only regret I have is: why didn't I think to take a picture of the table I had prepared for them to see! It was really very authentic. Maybe next year.

We got to see Kate and Jack play in their sports.

He came off the field smiling even though he didn't score this game.

Kate hit a line drive with the bases loaded and came in home. Since the limit is five scores per inning, Kate's coming home point didn't count, but hey, she brought in three others, so that was pretty exciting!!

Then, all of a sudden Easter was upon us and with all the services at our church, there were plenty of opportunities to serve.


RuthAnn and her Dad invited us to brunch at his retirement community. While I was expecting something a little better than nursing home food, it was a very pleasant surprise to see he lives in a high end retirement facility, offering all kinds of amenities. The brunch was equivalent to being on a nice cruise ship with a very extensive menu. It was a lovely day with them as he proudly gave us the grand tour afterwards.

They scored!

This dog is not happy if she isn't on your lap or in your face!!!!

Our time has been spent over the last couple of weeks with routine doctor visits, friends, church, Bible study, and pretty much just taking care of life's business. It's more than okay that life isn't greatly exciting, but more than just enjoyable. So thankful to be able to have occupation each day, family and friends, plenty to eat, our home, community, not too many health concerns, ... the list just goes on and on, doesn't it? To be content, no matter what circumstance we're in.

We've been studying Heaven since last September and this week's discussion seemed to be centered around the people we will see there and will we know everybody and I was reminded of an old song my mother used to sing and I enjoyed singing with her. Not one lady in our group had ever heard this song before.


The chorus is:

I’ll meet you in the morning
With a how do you do
And we’ll sit down by the river
And with rapture old acquaintance renew
You’ll know me in the morning
By the smile that I wear
When I meet you in the morning
In that city that is built four square.

That thrills me!!