Tuesday, July 31, 2012
When we took the little family to the airport in Detroit, we had no idea when we would see them again.
Some surprises are wonderful!
What blessing has God brought into your life lately?
Monday, July 30, 2012
As I was telling her the recipe..she started laughing, and said,
"So, it's really not a salad, it's a dessert!"
I don't know if it's a Midwestern thing, but it's definitely a Minnesota tradition.
We love to bring salad's to get togethers! Plus, as well all know, salad is healthier.
And if it has Cool Whip in it...all the better!
Here are a few of my favorite "salads!" I'll let you be the judge!
Sunday, July 29, 2012
Saturday, July 28, 2012
Like all siblings, my sisters and I would squabble. Every day events could ignite a raging conflict. It is my turn to sit in the front seat! I did the dishes last night. It is your turn! Why do I always have to walk the dog? Yes. We could argue about almost anything.
If my memory is accurate, my parents and grandparents were often able to redirect our behavior with this simple sentence: Don't forget The Golden Rule.
In the fifties and sixties, it seemed that everyone embraced The Golden Rule. Bullying wasn't the problem that it is today. Most of us knew and believed that we should "do unto others" exactly that which we would want done to ourselves. Just the mention of The Golden Rule stopped me in my tracks as I was plotting revenge on a sister.
This simple line of thinking served as a culturally accepted boundary.
I love The Golden Rule. I think it is the secret to loving, healthy relationships.
This principle comes from the end of the Sermon on the Mount, the greatest moral, religious and relational teaching of all time. As I have read and re-read Matthew 5 through 7 over the past few weeks, I have discovered that I do not disagree with one word of Jesus' famous sermon.
No one can dispute one word of His teachings.
In the wake of recent national tragedies, I am concerned about the spiritual and relational condition of our country. I am saddened that we rarely hear anyone mention The Golden Rule or The Sermon on the Mount. It seems we have also lost our appreciation for the Ten Commandments and the 23rd Psalm. What about The Beatitudes or The Lord's Prayer?
Passages that once were the well-worn and well-loved truths of the Christian faith, as well as guardrails for our society, seem to have disappeared from our teaching and conversation.
Perhaps, it is time for a revival of The Golden Rule, The Ten Commandments and The Sermon on the Mount. Surely it is time to be comforted by the picture of the tender shepherd of the 23rd Psalm.
Whether we live in the Midwest or the Northeast, just imagine what our communities would be like if we really did begin to treat others the way we would want to be treated.
How would we all be transformed if we expressed the same compassion to friends, neighbors or even acquaintances that we hunger for ourselves?
I think I'll take some time to sit on my patio, watch the hummingbirds as they visit the hibiscus and thoughtfully consider Jesus' matchless words in Matthew 7:25. " So, in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets."
How can you make The Golden Rule or The Sermon On The Mount a part of your daily conversation?
Friday, July 27, 2012
They say it's only a legend.
But some believe it's true.
That the national hero of Switzerland, William Tell, really lived.
The story (or at least one of the stories) goes that he was a Swiss mountaineer. Strong and tall and brave, and he was an expert with the crossbow. He lived in the canton of Uri during the 13th or 14th century.
Hermann Gessler, a cruel Austrian ruler, hung his cap on a high pole in the marketplace in the village of Altorf. He demanded that everyone who passed bow down before it.
One day William and his young son passed through the square, but William refused to bow to the hat. This act enraged Herr Gessler, and he envisioned others following suit, and he would lose control. So he ordered William and his son executed, but because he was fascinated with William's fame as a marksman, he told him he could redeem his life by shooting an apple off his son's head.
The boy stood still and firm because he had faith in his father.
William split the apple in half with a single shot.
When Gessler asked William why he had removed two bolts from his quiver, William explained that if he had failed and killed his son, he would have turned the second bolt on Gessler himself.
That ticked Gessler off, of course, so he arrested William and tossed him on a ship to be imprisoned in the castle dungeon. A storm arose on the lake, and the terrified soldiers released William so he could steer the ship with his famed strength.
William managed to jump overboard and escaped. He ran cross country to the area of the castle, and when Herr Gessler arrived, he assassinated him with the second bolt. That sparked a Swiss uprising that eventually defeated the Austrians and led to Switzerland's independence.
Some stories leave out the part about Gessler being killed. And really, what was William doing with his bow while he was bound in a boat?
The truth is that Herr Gessler got away. I know this because I've seen him. I see him every July. I saw him just last week.
He hides out in Gaylord, Michigan, and tries to wreck the annual Alpenfest (now pushing 50 years.) He demands silence and that everyone bow down to his hat. The only way to get rid of him is to join together to sing Edelweiss, the song named after the white flower that grows in the alps.
By the way, the edelweiss was apparently adopted as a Swiss national symbol in the 19th century, and I found this little tidbit about it here.
Did you know that the edelweiss is not really a flower as such, but a set of 500 to a thousand tiny florets grouped in several heads (between 2 and 10 of them) surrounded by 5 to 15 white velvety leaves, that it is fertilised by flies, or that it originally comes from the Himalayas and was practically unknown until the late 19th century?
Interesting how something so beautiful can be fertilized by something as filthy as a fly.
Oh, here's another thing. It's scientific name, Leontopodium alpinum, literally means "alpine lion's paw."
But I'm sidetracked.
Because now I'm thinking about flies and standing firm and faith in our Father and redemption and the cross and apples and things being split and lions and overcoming evil with song.
Speaking of which, here's another song to the tune of Edelweiss. Maybe you'll recognize it.
Alpenfest happens again next year July 16-20. But if you want to see Herr Gessler, you have to be there for the opening celebration before he's chased out of town again.
And just for fun. Here's a handful of photos from our week.
Thursday, July 26, 2012
…Please quit hogging the dog, you never let me have a turn to take care of Marshmallow.
…It turns out we don’t all have to learn how to play the piano, I apologize for all those long lessons.
…Your brother actually played thousands more video games than you do, so go for it.
…I'm so tired of the beautiful multi-color sweet smelling rose garden at the park, let’s go home.
…Let’s forget the dirt bike ride on nature mountain trail and just watch television all weekend.
…I think traveling 60,000 miles to eat at Burger King was worth the trip, don't you dad?
...I'm so very sorry for living my life through you, just because I wanted to play the violin and be a lifeguard.
by Cheryl Moeller, mom of 6, who once found and sold large worms with her eldest son to fishermen.
Wednesday, July 25, 2012
So all you do is put your gear in your canoe and paddle away to an open camp site. There are many different lakes and campsites to choose from. To get from lake to lake, you can paddle from one to the other on some, but on others you need to portage. Portage simply means take the canoe out of the lake and carry it for a ways then set it down in a new body of water.
Then let the fun begin!
Things To Do
|Me & Hubby|
- Put on your inner native and paddle a canoe like nobody’s business
- Explore one of the many small islands and discover places that seriously look like Hollywood movie sets
- Eat s’mores over a campfire
- Park yourself on a large rock, bring a book, and relax with the call of the loon in the background
- Unplug from technology (though, to be honest, my hubby still managed to get cell phone service and check his e-mail if he climbed to one of the higher areas).
- And for even more ideas, click here.
Tuesday, July 24, 2012
You can roll your eyes, if you want to. I know I did when my Mom asked me to stop by and see them. The sheer number of people showing up on her lawn at dusk changed my mind. Neighbors and family members dragging friends, drinks, and lawn chairs to Lu’s yard to wait for the unfurling.
Adults exclaim, “Look there!” Little children dance from one stalk to another. They watch one bloom, see another long bud vibrate, fatten like a caterpillar, glance at it, and the first is already open. Pretty soon the other bud looks alive as if exiting a cocoon that turns into a pinwheel.
After focusing on how a single flower unfolds, it’s better to sit back and get the full effect like a continuous explosion of color. It's as if hundreds of yellow butterflies are fluttering.
I only wish they had a long range view for the full effect.
Mary Allen writes from Northwest Indiana. Here she poses with her mother in a patch of evening blooming primrose. Mary thinks the brightest flower in this garden is the one wearing pink.
Monday, July 23, 2012
|Search down the river|
|Gaze across the lake|
|Up in green tree tops|
|Out on a branch|
|Hunt for the hidden|
|On the rocks|
|in the sky|
Sunday, July 22, 2012
My crew was invited to help pick...at 5:30 in the morning. They were sent home with buckets of corn.
We do things as a family. Many hands make light work--especially when there's many mouths to feed. LoL.
My husband knows the value of tools and has made sure I have helpful tools for my kitchen. Like a food slicer--which I might add has been used a LOT this summer.
Another favorite use for the slicer?
It makes fast work for slicing cukes for pickling.
By the time he was done cutting corn off the cobs, there were two buckets of cobs!
And lots and lots of corn.
I grew up using a pressure cooker, so I used one to do a variation of blanching the corn. It was much faster--especially since we used a turkey cooker burner which was outside.
Once all was said and done, we had 17 quarts ready for the freezer.
And that was just from the first round.
We had two days of doing corn.
Can you say yumminess for the coming winter?
Even the newest member of our family, Junior, got into working on the corn. He loves sweet corn just as much as we do. LoL. That's one smart kitten! =)
So tell me, have you had any sweet corn yet this year?
Saturday, July 21, 2012
by Boyd Sutton
He learned quickly what it might have been like for the early pioneers moving westward, some peeling off to settle along the way. The entire eleven acres they bought was covered by large trees, mostly oak, many hickory, a few maple, lots of dogwood, and plenty of mountain laurel, with wild azaleas mixed in. He and his good friend, Mike, worked weekends to clear the path from the front road about one-third into the eleven acre patch using only a chain saw and hand axe. Mike said he ate enough bologna sandwiches to last a lifetime. They remained friends, continued working together, and carpooled for nearly 20 years.
They’d hired a contractor to put in the foundation, then another one to build the outer shell of the house, complete with siding and roofing. That left a hollow shell with sub-flooring and stud-walls. Inside, he worked on wiring, rough plumbing, flooring, cabinets, and finish work. There were also more trees to clear to create an open space for the drain field. That took most of the first year they owned the property.
Every large tree cut down was painful—twice. First, they’d always loved trees and it pained them to cut down large oaks, hickories, and maples. Second, from the work it took to limb the trees and get the stumps out. The only clear-cutting was for the driveway, for the house’s foundation, and for the drain field. They saved as many trees as possible. It’s okay to call them tree-huggers. It still pains them to see a tree cut down.
They contracted for a “package” home—one of those deals where all of the home’s components were included, but the owner had to contract for putting them together. The end product was a completed house, including flooring, appliances, and so on. It’s called “sweat equity.” The original price was low and the owners put a lot of sweat into completing it. In the end, they owned a finished home with a lot of equity and very little left to pay the bank.
They were young and brave—and foolish. Though they got it done, at the end, both said “never again!”
Friday, July 20, 2012
- · 60 seconds of rain dumped on our house, no one else believed me.
- · My sister-in-law announced that they will be moving back to MI after 5 years in VA.
- · Free time meant writing time was a bonus; a chapter I’d struggled with is written; words were put to document for a collaborative project (my portion is long overdue).
- · I was ill, buried under blankets in my stifling hot room, shivering. Hubby came in, tenderly soothing the aching muscles and joints with a damp cloth.
- · Looking like it wants to rain. Feeling quite warm. Temps due to drop, relief for my hubby.
- · It’s RAINING!!! Hurray! Praying for those who’ve got crops relying on this for survival.
- · Friends at work insist my van needs a break from all the wear and tear put on it. Because of the serpentine belt’s tendency to slip off its wheels whenever it rains, those friends can know God has heard and answered their request. The van has the day off.
- · Payday! I get to pay a bill or two.
- · Looking forward to Saturday’s writer’s workshop when I get to see other writers I’ve missed.
- · Waiting in anticipation for this day because of fellowship with other writers, great instruction, and a day spent with an amazing friend.
It's been a pleasure to share with you.
Thursday, July 19, 2012
We are still processing this trip. We were warned what to expect, but previous trips to other third world counties did not prepare us for the life our family lives daily. It was good for us to go. These pictures show what we expected. Like I said we are still processing the rest of the 500 plus pictures husband took.
Please pray for Haiti and for the missionaries there that they can hold out under extreme discouragment. I cannot say more at this time.