Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Yes, I am so excited that our daughter and her family arrive here in Arizona today from Central New York.  They are in flight right now.  We will be leaving to go to the airport to pick them up in a hour or so.  We have a busy time planned while they are here so I just may not be posting as frequently.  We so want to spend our time enjoying them.  They are our priority for this week.  Just can't wait! 

Have a Blessed Day,

Monday, September 26, 2011

Menus for the Month of October 2011

Have a Blessed Day,

Friday, September 23, 2011

Foody Friday - My Favorite Birthday Cake

Coconut Marshmallow Chocolate Cake

Well, my birthday is this coming week, and there has to be something good about growing older.  For me, that would be this cake.   Perhaps I will bake the cake ahead and freeze it as we have family arriving.  The bookkeeper, Jeanine,  at the home building business where I was formerly employed made this for me...every birthday for many years.  Yumm! 

Hershey's Deep Dark Chocolate Cake
1 3/4 c. flour
2 c. sugar
3/4 c. cocoa
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 c. boiling water
2 eggs
1 c. milk
1/2 c. vegetable oil
2 tsp. vanilla

Combine dry ingredients in large mixing bowl.  Ad remaining ingredients except boiling water; beat at medium speed 2 minutes.  Remove from mixer;  stir in boiling water (batter will be thin).  Pour into greased and floured  two 8"-9" layers pans or one 9" x 13" pan.  Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes or until cake tester comes out clean. 

Chocolate Filling (For Cakes)

1 c. butter
1 c. confectioners sugar
1/2 c. cocoa
2 eggs, or equivalent of egg beaters

Cream butter and sugar.  Add eggs and cocoa, beat thoroughly until mixture is consistency of whipped cream.  Spread between cake layers. 

Marshmallow Frosting
2 egg whites
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 c. sugar
3/4 c. light Karo syrup
1 1/4 tsp. vanilla
Beat egg whites and salt until soft peaks form when beater is raised.  Gradually add sugar, about 1 tablespoon at a time, beating thoroughly after each addition.  Continue beating until stiff peaks form when beater is raised.  Fold in vanilla. 

Note:  If you are concerned about eating raw egg whites, use pasteurized egg whites.  (It's also great for a facial mask also!) 
And, of course, the final topping on the cake....a dusting a coconut.  I'm thinking I just might like to make than marshmallow frosting with a little bit of espresso powder added, and then topped with chocolate shavings, dusted cocoa or toasted almonds??? 

Joining Michael for Foody Friday

Have a Blessed Day,

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Thankful Thursdays

56.  The confidence that I have in the love and power of our Almighty God who can bring us through tough times, and in the process, can strengthen our faith.  He has proved Himself trustworthy. 

57.  Our daughter, son-in-law and grandchild who will be visiting us next week here in Arizona.  I am feeling just as I would on a Christmas Eve with the anticipation so high.  I am so excited that I can hardly sleep!  My prayer is that they have an uneventful and safe flight. 

58.  Our military forces and the sacrifices they make in the defense of freedom all over our world.  May we not forget them and their families in our daily prayers. 

59.  Dear friends living far away that write us and keep in touch via mail, email, and Skype.  Distance cannot separate the love that we have for one another.

60.  The joy of serving others.  How wonderful it is to be of help to someone in need, to help lighten their load.  May my desire always be, "Make me a blessing to someone today." 

Joining Iris today                       
 for Thankful Thursday
 at Grace Alone.

Have a blessed day,

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

His Word for My Week - Building Spiritual Muscle

My memory verse for this week:
"O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him" 
 Psalm 34:8

My daughter is a personal trainer and she knows what it takes to build muscle.  You develop strong muscles by working them hard with resistance training.  Resistance training is any exercise that causes the muscles to contract against an external resistance with the expectation of increases in strength, tone, mass, and/or endurance. The external resistance can be dumbbells, rubber exercise tubing, your own body weight, bricks, bottles of water, or any other object that causes the muscles to contract.

Our faith develops in the same manner.  Tough situations (pressure from the outside) help us to build strong faith "muscles."  By trusting God through tough times and seeing Him work, we are able to trust Him more.  Tough times are just opportunities to "Trust Him More."   God allows us to go through periods of training that challenge our faith.  We soon learn that God can take care of our needs no matter what the circumstances are.  He does so increment by increment, not all at once.  He gives us our daily bread as we need as we depend on Him on a day-by-day basis.  Our faith grows stronger as we experience God's power and care.

Is there a tough situation in your life right now?  Will you allow Him to help you in building strong spiritual muscles by trusting Him for your situation?  Trust Him to do what is right and to meet your needs. 

 "God will make a way where there seems to be no way,
He works in ways we cannot see,
He will make a way, He will make a way."

Have a Blessed Day,

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A Heavenly Sunday Afternoon

Sam Rotman Piano Performance
What a heavenly way to spend a Sunday afternoon!  We had the privilege of attending a piano performance by world-renowned classical pianist, Sam Rotman.  

He started off the evening by saying, "Two people always are at his performances: Sam Rotman and Jesus who is always in the front row listening!"  He played selections with intensity and precision from Beethoven, Schubert, Shumann, Chopin, Brahms, and Rachmaninoff.  We were mesmerized!

Mr. Rotman shared his testimony telling us that he was brought up in an orthodox Jewish family which had fled the Holocaust in Romania (fourteen of his father's family members were killed by the Nazis). At Julliard he met fellow students who challenged him the read the New Testament for himself. This proved to be a life-changing experience, and while at Julliard he became a committed Christian. 

What a surprise to find out that he and his wife reside close by in Mesa, Arizona.  We will be sure to attend more of his amazing performances. 

Joining Trish for LACE
Joining Shanda  for  On Your Heart Tuesdays

Have a Blessed Day,

Monday, September 19, 2011

Scrapbooking Catch-up

I am trying to get caught up with some of my grandson's scrapbook pages.  My Photoshop Elements on my old computer was pretty outdated and not to mention, the old computer was unbelievably slow. Now that I have a new laptop and a new Photoshop Elements, I am back at it again.  We had thought that we had lost our camera from our NY trip last year, but we did fortunately find it a year later (after purchasing a new one).  I have a lot of catching up to do!

My grandson, much like his mom, is such a nostalgia buff.  He loves getting his scrapbook out,  flipping the pages and sharing his thoughts about each page.  Treasured memories! 

Have a Blessed Day,

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Beauty of the Desert

The blossoming desert...Pink Easter Lily Cactus (Echinopsis eyriesii)

When we  moved to the Sonoran Desert eight years ago, I felt sad to leave my beautiful perennial gardens of Central New York.  Can I tell you how exited I was when I saw our first cactus bloom.  I had no idea that they would be so beautiful.  I can remember running into the house beseeching my husband to come take a look at the flowering cacti.   Sadly their blossoms only last for a short period of time and often some just overnight.  Nevertheless, they are so beautiful when the do bloom. 

Joining Shanda's In Search of Beauty Blog Hop.

Have A Blessed Day! 

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Thankful Thursdays

51.  Life, for simply being here. 

52.  Wonderful friends...so many people who are so dear to my heart.  How I thank God for this
        provision in my life. 

53.  The generosity of people...ones who share and freely give out of the abundance of their hearts. 

54.  The autumn season with its colorful leaves, acorns, pumpkins, carved pumpkins, caramel apples,
       apple pies, warm spiced apple cider, hot cocoa, soothing soups and hardy stews, outdoor fire
       pits and bonfires, marshmallow roasts, hayrides, sunflowers, mums, Chinese lanterns, corn
       stalks, scarecrows, and okay, baseball and football games, and tailgating parties. 

55.  People who service our needs:  plumbers, electricians, pest  & weed controllers, computer
       technicians, appliance repairmen, Mr. Fix It men, beauticians, bus and taxi drivers,  pilots and
       stewards and  stewardesses, cooks, waiters and waitresses, auto repairmen and mechanics,
       mailmen and postal workers,  UPS and FedEx workers, personal trainers & fitness instructors
      (my daughter is one),  dietitians, doctors, nurses, hospital workers, policemen, teachers,
      professors, and clergy. 

Joining Iris today for Thankful Thursday at Grace Alone.

Have a Blessed Day,

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

His Word for My Week

My Memory Verse This Week:
"The wicked worketh a deceitful work: but to him that soweth righteousness shall be a sure reward."
Proverbs 11:18

"Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows,  this he will also reap.  For the one who sows to his own flesh shall from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit shall from the Spirit reap eternal life."  Galatians 6:7-8

The Principle of Sowing and Reaping

1.  You always reap after the kind you sow.  Apple seeds produce apples, not bananas.  If we sow
    after the flesh, we reap the effects of wickedness, and if we sow after the Spirit, we reap the fruit of
    righteousness.  Galatians 5:19-25 clearly contrasts the deeds of the flesh and the fruit of the
    Spirit.   Are we sowing to the flesh or to the Spirit?  Check this out:
2.  You always reap later than you sow.  There is a season of growing.  It's not instant.  There is a
     wait for the harvest.  We cannot compromise our faith without the chastening of God.  It may
     appear that we have gotten away with our sin, but God's long-suffering allows time for us to repent.
     Often we share God's Word into some needy soul, but there seems to be no fruit.  Patiently wait. 
     I personally did not respond to the first attempt from someone sharing the Good News with me.  It
     took several people sharing their faith with me before I surrendered my life to Christ!  But that    
     was  the greatest day of my life! 

3.  You always reap more than you sow.  Sow the wind, reap a whirlwind.  We always reap in greater
     measure than we sow.  One grain of wheat sown produces many grains of wheat.  When we sow
     to the Spirit we produce fruit..little fruit, more fruit and then much fruit, and we find peace and 
     joy.   When we so to the flesh, we reap discontentment, unhappiness, and even ruined lives.  If
     we tell a little white lie, we know that it may take many more to keep covering up the first lie. 
     How much easier and rewarding it would be to sow in the Spirit.

Some examples of  the principle of sowing and reaping from my study in 2 Samuel in the life of King David:
  • David should have gone to war, but decided to stay in his palace.  (Idle hands are the devil's workshop.)  Perhaps being somewhat bored, he takes a walk out onto the terrace and eyes his neighbor, beautiful "Bath"sheba, who just happened to be taking a bath (in broad daylight) on her rooftop.  And he LUST after her.
  • He sent for her (a married woman), slept with her, and she became pregnant.  (How do you hide this one?)  SIN
  • To cover his sin, David invites Bathsheba's husband, Uriah, over for a few drinks thinking he would get drunk and go home and sleep with Bathsheba and voila a child.  Didn't happen. 
  • David sends a note with Uriah (interesting?) to Joab asking Joab to put Uriah in the front lines that he might be among the first to be killed.  And that did happen. DEATH
  • God was very displeased (to say the least) with David and sent Nathan the prophet to confront David with his sin of adultery.
  • God's judgement upon David was severe.  The sword would never depart from his house, and the son born of Bathsheba would not live.  DEATH
James 1:15 "Then when LUST has conceived, it gives birth to SIN; and when SIN is accomplished, it brings forth DEATH.  This is what I call the LSD of the Bible.  How destructive it is! 

Have a Blessed Day,

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

"What Can I Do?"

What's on my heart today...the loss of a very special man in our church.  He went home to be with the Lord on the 9th of September.  Today we attended his memorial service, and it was a wonderful time of remembrance of how this man has touched so many lives.  As we filed through the family reception line, I could hear friends sincerely saying to his bereaved wife, "If there's anything I can do..."  What will be her needs in the months following this day?  What can we do about them?  These are some of my thoughts from past experiences of loss.
  • Flowers and meals:  There are always plenty of these at the time of loss, but why not wait a month or so and send them flowers to let them know that you are continuing to think of them  and are praying for them.  A few months down the road, invite them to dinner either at your house or take them out to breakfast, lunch, or dinner and offer to drive them. 
  • Stop by for a visit:  I think that most people worry about saying the wrong thing, and avoid the bereaved.  The thing they need is to be able to talk about what they have experienced, and how they are doing, what is difficult, and if it is getting easier, or what they miss.  Give them a call especially in the evenings when they are alone in a dark, quiet house. 
  • Mark your calendar:  Make it a point to find out the deceased birthday or anniversary and send the bereaved spouse a note to let them know you are thinking about them or invite them over for dinner on that date.  They will appreciate your remembering them on specifically difficult days.  Holidays are difficult especially if they have no family near.
  • Getting back to church:  Do not overwhelm them with sympathy upon their return to church.  Floods of caring can reduce them to tears.  Cards or even visits to the home might be more appropriate.  Do not usher them into the single groups immediately.  Allow them some time to get used to their change in martial status. 
  • HelpfulnessFor widows, men might help with car needs such as oil changing or suggest places where she can have car repairs and tune-ups done.   If in a winter climate, offer to put the snow tires on.  Assist with lawnmowing or household fix-it jobs that need to be done.  Call and offer these services and don't wait until she asks.   
  • Helpfulness:  For widowers,  ladies might help to prepare a meal and have it taken to them.  Many men are not good cooks, and even though there are plenty of good restaurants, but there is nothing like a home-cooked meal.  I can remember my mother helping a widower who lived around the block from us with his washing and ironing.  He would drop it off to her,  and she would wash, iron and fold and have it ready for him in a few days.  Occasionally she would add  a fresh baked pie to the top of his laundry basket.  He so appreciated that. 
"Is there anything I can do?"  So easy for that to be ushered out of our mouths, but are we doing anything?  I have said many times that love is a verb; it is something we do.  May our love and concern for those in need be seen in the thoughtful things we do to help them through their most difficult of times. 

Joining Shanda for On Your Heart Tuesdays
Joining Darlene for {Titus 2}SDAYS

Have a Blessed Day,

Monday, September 12, 2011

I'm Squeeling!

Last week I had asked my friend, Kathy, also known as KGB, (she works at Intel) for some advise about my old Photoshop Elements download.  I wasn't sure  how to take it off my old computer and put in on my new laptop.  This was her answer!  Unbelievable! 

She walked into church this past Sunday morning and put this into my hands, and said, "There you go, have fun! I have a program that I like better, and you may have this one."  It's brand new!  I'm squeeling!  How very blessed I am to have dear friends like Kathy! 

I can't wait to start working with it.  It is sooo much better than my last
 version of Photoshop Elements!  Can you tell that I am excited? 
 I am feeling very blessed right now!  

Have a Blessed Day,

Friday, September 9, 2011

Foody Friday - Chicken Riggies

Chicken Riggies

1 lb. of Chicken Breast, boneless   
2 pints heavy cream
2 bell peppers                    
½ c. butter or margarine
2 small cans mushrooms   
¼ c. tomato sauce
4-5 cherry peppers  
1 c. parmesan cheese
1 bay leaf
¼ c. wine vinegar     
1 lb. rigatoni, cooked
¼ c. olive oil      
4 cloves of garlic         

Brown garlic in frying pan with olive oil.  Add chicken breast, cut into small pieces and cook on medium heat until chicken is cooked.  Add mushrooms, cherry and bell peppers, cut into pieces.  Add bay leaves and salt and pepper for taste.  Let simmer for 30 minutes on low heat.  Add 2 pints of heavy cream, 1 stick of butter melted, ¼ c. of sauce and ¼ c. of wine vinegar.  Add Parmesan cheese and let cook till cheese melts.  Add the cooked rigatoni. 

This recipe was given to me by a friend in Rome, N.Y.  It seems to be a Central New York type of Italian dish.  I have never seen Chicken Riggies anywhere but in Rome and Utica, N.Y.  They are a popular menu item in many restaurants there.  This is a great recipe and as tasty as any you will find in a Central New York restaurant.  As my dear italian friend, Angie, would say, "Mangia!"

Foody Fridays

Joining Foody Friday at http://designsbygollum.blogspot.com/

Have a Blessed Day,

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Thankful Thursdays

Psalm 30:12     
That my glory may sing your praise and not be silent.
        O Lord my God, I will give thanks to you forever!        

46.  Cooler Arizona temperatures.  Today the high of 104 degrees and low tonight 76 degrees.  Later 
        this week the highs are to be in the 90's and night lows in the 70's.  The average temps for
        August were 107.2 and night lows of 86.4.  Great to have it cooling down!

47.   Peaceful days for the moment.  Life has its ups and downs, and for right now we are enjoying a
        time of stress free days.  It's good to remember these days and be thankful for them.  God only
        knows what our futures hold. 

48.  The closeness I have with my husband.  Walking hand in hand with him a few days ago, I was
        overcome with such a warm, protected feeling.  I was smiling on the inside!   "I love this man;
        thank You Lord." 

49.  Times to chat with my daughter who lives in New York.  I love her so and miss her terribly.  Can't
       wait until she and her family are here in AZ in a few short weeks. 

50.  My 3-year old grandson's thankful heart.  I told him that grandpa had recorded some of his
       favorite programs and movies for him to watch while he is visiting us.  He said, "Oh, thank you!"
       so exuberantly, put the phone down, and ran to his mom with his hands excitedly waving in the
       air to tell her that.  I shared that we were going to  take him to the Zoo and then to back to his
       favorite place in Yuma, "Castle Park."  He told me that he is taking the airplane to Arizona
       to see us.  He sure does love to talk.  Even when no one is around he is talking.  I think he just
       might be the next male version of Oprah!  

Have a Blessed Day,

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

LACE - Autumn Cottage

Yeah!  My Autumn Cottage Magazine has arrived!
with Wonderful Exterior ...

and Interior Decorating Ideas...
and some great Autumn recipes.
I am a happy girl! 

  "To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose unto heaven:" 
 Ecclesiates 3:1

Linking up with Trish for LACE Wednesdays

Have a Blessed Day,  

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

His Word for My Week!

My memory verse for this week is Psalm 119:10. 
As I meditated on this verse this week, these scriptures came to mind:

"For without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him."
Hebrews 11:6 

    "I love those who love Me and those who diligently seek Me will find Me."
Proverbs 8:17

"O God, Thou art my God, early will I seek Thee:  my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is."
Psalm 63:1

"Thy Word have I hid in my heart, that I might not sin against Thee."
Psalm 110:11

Our pastor taught us that the "eth" means continual action...
comes and keeps on coming,
thirsts and keeps on thirsting,
longs and keeps on longing...love that! 

How do we seek God with a whole heart:
  • Be prepared for distractions and opposition when you determine to whole-heartedly seek Him.
  • Seek Him by reading His Word and praying before doing anything else in our day. Take time to share with Him our shortcomings and sin.  Repent and ask for forgiveness.  Determine to spend time with Him especially when things are going wrong and we get discouraged.
  • Ask the Holy Spirit to help us to make the Scriptures come alive to change our hearts and lives. 
  • Have our receivers up--having our hearts opened to heaven in every part of our day. Practice His presence throughout our day. 
  • Journalize what the Scriptures teach us about Himself:  His love, His power, His forgiveness, His wisdom, His holiness, His grace.  Seek to be like Him.  
  • Be obedient to do all that is written in His Word for His sake and His glory and our benefit (peace and joy).

joining Shanda for ON YOUR HEART TUESDAYS


Thursday, September 1, 2011

Thankful Thursdays

41.  A new Bible Study starting this fall in my Middle School Sunday School Class.  We will be studying "Guided by God, Lessons from Elijah and Elisha."  My students are such a "delight" to me, and I so enjoy learning with them.  They are a great group of young men and women.  I am thankful for their eagerness to learn. 

42.   A good report from a medical procedure I had this week.  Thankful that it is over!  I am also thankful for good and caring doctors and their staff members. 

43.   A good night's sleep that helps me to be productive, mentally sharp, emotionally balanced, and energized for the new day.

44.   Great cookbooks and online cooking sites that make cooking, baking, and menu planning so much easier.  Bloggers that have some great recipes, menu ideas and wonderful tablescape ideas.   

45.  The wisdom and the wonder of the Word of God and the God of the Word. 

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