Passion is a gritty kind of love, tough and

optimistic enthusiasm that overcomes negativity and inconvenience to make it

through to the end. (10,000 Reasons Overflow)

Friday, September 30, 2016

Meal planning

I don’t know how you feel about meal planning, but I love it.  I like planning out what I am making to make my life a little easier on “game day”.  Between work and the millions of other things I have going on, I’d just rather not have to always think or make a decision every day.  And what if I start to make something and realize we are missing a key ingredient.  (usually there is a work around).


Admittedly, I have an issue with if I plan things out on a certain day things don’t always go as I planned… so I am trying a new strategy.  Pick the meals for the week, make sure the ingredients are available, and make the food the day we want it, or that it works out for our schedule.

This week there will be two pots of soup.  This is a normal occurrence once fall hits.  We are soup eaters.  We like soup, not from a can, but homemade yummy goodness. 


So this week… Chicken enchilada and potato (by special request).  Now I am not gonna lie, my potato soup is slap your momma good.  It’s delicious, and not really good for you, but we can just ignore that part.  It’s delicious.  I mean, like really.


And I normally plan just two big meals, and we eat leftovers, life is just easier that way.  We like leftovers and they lend themselves well to crazy schedules.


And we got those!


So this week will be a cabbage stir-fry with potatoes and cut up pork chops and plain ole spaghetti, filled with zucchini, peppers, spinach, and mushrooms, and group beef.  We always have turkey burgers and sweet potatoes (to make fries) if needed and if our schedules allow.  


Life is better and a little less chaotic if I plan!


What’s on your menu?



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Tuesday, September 27, 2016

It is election time!

So I thought I'd enlighten you on my thoughts in the debate. 

I didn't watch them. Honestly, it was scarier to me than Criminal Minds so I watched that for a little bit, and the cleaned up my room some more and prayed.

I can't tell you which one I want for president because the answer is none of the above. I really do think that people (if that's what they want) should vote for Gary. It seems that it went just like the funny/sad video I posted.

I've learned a couple important lessons through this election time...

You can't buy happiness but you sure can buy a truckload of crazy!


If I was going to listen to people's opinion on who should be POTUS  (there is one friend who I might buy dinner for and ask her because she always has a biblical perspective) it's not the ones who post about it on Facebook.

I say this with every beat of my heart.... Whoever is POTUS is no shock to God. Nothing happens without His permission. NOTHING. 

Of course I care about the country. I honestly wouldn't want to live anywhere else. But do you know who really reigns? God. 
He is...
Freedom giving 
And He is good.

Maybe I should worry about the state of affairs in our country. But the bible says "don't worry" so I'm not going to.

The truth is I've got work to be done. Soccer fields, community gardens, people to love, prayer, and a whole lot of other things. I don't have time for all this crazy. 

I'll vote. I probably won't like the outcome but it's a right and privilege.

Even though it's all crazy, I trust God, He hasn't let me down yet! And never will. He is faithful 

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Stuffed peppers

4-6 peppers (choose your color - we like green and red)
1 cup rice (white or brown)
1 lb ground beef (or turkey)
1 small onion diced 
28 oz crushed tomatoes or tomato sauce 
1/2 tsp Garlic powder
1/4 tsp Red pepper flakes

Cut tops off peppers (cut up and freeze for later date or eat them)

Mix meat, rice, spices together (this is either gross or therapeutic)

Divide the meat equally into the peppers. Arrange in crockpot. Pour tomato sauce or crushed tomatoes around the peppers.

Cook in crockpot 4 hours on high, 8
hours on low. 

Serve with mashed potatoes, noodles, or your favorite veggie if you're not a "starchy"

Often I make these the night before and plug in the morning. I also sometimes add zucchini or squash. 

You can "taco" these up, adding corn, taco seasoning instead of spices and adding rotel tomatoes with chiles to tomato sauce. 


In the last two months I've been to 4 weddings (one was a MI reception).

Honestly, I love weddings. I love love. Funny isn't it? That love is a noun and verb. And both are equally important.

I love weddings because they represent to me something worth fighting for. Love is worth fighting for. 

For years (and still is) I pray for
Myself to love bigger than I've ever loved before.  Loving comes with a lot a joy and sometimes heartache. 

Awhile ago I was having a pity party (weddings are hard alone - and I would bet sometimes they are hard when you're together with someone but lonely), and a friend said to me "a lot of people must really love you, I don't get invited to nearly as many weddings are you do". 

Stop. Wait a minute.

It is honoring to be invited to a wedding. It is a true honor. 

Yesterday I stood in the garage (where the food was being served) after everyone ate, and was overwhelmed. I don't know what my problem is lately but my eyes keep leaking ;) because I'm so grateful.

I saw so many people that I genuinely love.  even if I hadn't seen them in years. Couples I've prayed for over years and years (that's an honor).

I can't even explain it. I sound like such a dork. Like really. But I'm so thankful to have spent my life loving, I'm so silly but it's the best part of my life! Loving! 

I don't even know if people know how much I love them or am thankful for them. They may never know, but my prayers, they carry on.

I love loving, it's the greatest.

It's above all things.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

A lamp of love!

This might be my worst decorating idea EVER! At least by the standards of the decorating world! Better Homes & gardens I am not! This comes to no
Surprise to most of you!! 

I went to Target today (for a gift card, yogurt and milk)... and you all know buying exactly what you went for hardly ever happens. 

I saw this lamp! I had to have it! (I have an aversion to buying lamps). This never happens to me! I never say "oh I LOVE THAT LAMP". Lamps are a necessity to me. Wanna see? Need a lamp... But this one!

I'm sure someone thought this would be great for filling with lots of pretty things... Well I filled it with meaningful things!

Shells my gram got me from Florida when she went, rocks from my 2014 trip to Haiti. And... All the notes I've saved over the years from people I love and that love me. I had them all in various places but wasn't sure what I'd do with them in our new home. Until... I saw this lamp!

I can't help but to think of the scripture 

““You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”
Matthew 5:14-16 NIV

How many people have shown me love and light, and now it's really in my lamp! 

I know... It's corny, and you might think it's ugly, but I love it!!

Friday, September 16, 2016

Off I go!!!

Today is my last day of vacation (weekends don't count, I'm already normally off)... 

Yesterday I met with my old co-workers to hang out, as my former boss hugged me, he said "you made all our lives better" (I'm sure some might disagree). Really in your life and all the places you go, what
More can you ask for? Especially if you carry Christ with you. Because, at least in my case, He's the best part of my life. 

Then today, my new employer called me to say "can't wait til you're here" and my new (old) boss called and said "enjoy your last day off, we are looking forward to having you join the team" 

I feel blessed. Or the luckiest, I don't know. Whatever it is, my heart is filled with joy. I feel more relaxed than I've felt in a long long time and ready for a new adventure. So thankful God guides my path!

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Time off and new seasons

Well it's nearing the end of my time off....

Originally I had all these plans... I was going to visit all the Great Lakes, go to Niagara Falls... And then... Well I made other plans (though both of those are on my 2017 short list of things to do!!! And they will probably happen! Just not right now.

I've spent these two weeks decompressing and praying. Finding myself often times by the water because that is where I find the most comfort. 

As I sit at Grand traverse bay, I see the most beautiful of blues, I hear the waves hit the rocks, an all too familiar sound from my childhood, and while I know there is crazy all around me, and the cool breeze hits my face, I am reminded that God is a mighty and loving God.

While I could admit to you that I'm nervous about my new job, mostly because all good and new  things make me nervous, I know that God loves me, and He is sovereign and Lord over my life, and a loving Father.

I've done so many things these almost two weeks that bring my heart joy, calm my soul, I feel... Ready. 

I've spent time with people that I love and love me back. I've been reminded  in the deepest parts of my soul that I loved. Not for what I do but for who I am.

As I know I am chasing the last days of summer, I am thankful for the seasons of the year and the seasons in my life, and with all the change I've had lately, my heart says "here I am, God, send me" and I'm not sure exactly where that is but I'm ready to go.

I'm just so thankful 

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Broken hearted

I had a whole post written about a stinky homeless guy who taught me a big lesson today, but I changed my mind (maybe ill post it tomorrow)

Today I was ripped to shreds by a verse. Psalm 34:18 
“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”
I don't even know. Sometimes I think about times when things were different, and I wish I could go back, but I can't. Things change, seasons change. We live, we learn, we grow, we love.

Today we sang "you make me brave" and honestly I don't listen or sing that song much. If it's sung I tune out. It reminds me of one of the hardest times in my life. People come and they go, but when these 5 left, it was like someone ripped my heart out with a spoon. 

Today as I prayed about my own broken-heartedness I allowed myself to feel during that song. I tried holding back tears but they came. 

I'm thankful for the growth (and traveling) since that dreaded time when The Dorband5 set out on their new adventure a little over two years ago. 

What I'm most thankful for today is that God is close to the broken-hearted and that He is the redeemer of all things!

Saturday, September 10, 2016


Today I went kayaking. All by myself. 

Life has been crazy and busy! I went to a funeral and then I went kayaking after picking up a great salad at The Big Salad in Grosse Pointe

My agenda:
Get gas for mower at garden

I was having lunch on sunset point of belle isle, and for a moment I thought "maybe I'll just kayak and then do my goal setting" and seriously it started to sprinkle so I headed for shelter. 

I found this sweet little pavilion and busted out my bible and journal and guide and it started POURING. There was even a moat around the pavilion (ok it was puddlie). And so I finished my goals and I kid you not, the sun came out and it cleared up. 

I thought about how much God loves me and the song "good good Father" and how maybe or maybe or not that rain storm came just at the right time, I know, left up to me, I'd be my own demise.

It felt great to get my goals done and set! Now I get to complete them! Hard work and determination will get me there!

As I was going kayaking I was praying and just enjoying the day, all alone there were moments where it was so quiet it was deafening. I forget how busy and loud my life can be. So many inputs from everywhere. 

It reminded me of one of my favorite quotes 
Make time for the quiet moments, as God whispers and the world is loud.
~ unknown

I had to just listen, be still. There has been a lot of change this year! I left my church, got a new house, now a new job, there needs to be some quiet. I keep saying now all I need is a good boyfriend (husband material)  and my whole life will be upside down. And I'm certainly not opposed to that last one! Lol Lots of direction is needed about where to go and wha to do and how I will grow in all these areas but like every other time in my

Life, I want to know NOW. But I know there are lessons in the "wait", and I like becoming who God wants me to be. 

I'm so thankful for the way God loves me, He knows better than me, that's for sure.

Saturday ramblings after kayaking

These days, the day after labor days were some of my favorites. As a kid with a boat, we had one last Labor Day celebration of camping on our boat with lots of friends. After that it was a race to see how many more days on the water we could get in. I can remember days in October we'd still have or boat in, we'd go to dinner with winter coats on but I'd still be out, wind in my face, holding on to every last moment.  Those were the days of my life. 

As I have the next two weeks off people have said "too bad it wasn't summer", but for me this time has been perfect. Today I went kayaking because yesterday I filled my afternoon with a dear friend. 

I got to the kayak rental place and the lady warned that it was windy... So I was going to make it a short trip. It was gonna be hard work to paddle back if I went the long way... So I went the short way and felt like it wasn't going to be enough for me, so... I decided that I've never shy'd away from hard work and today was no day to start :) so I went further than I've ever gone before. It was so cool! I went places that most people have never been, and best ever I saw things I've never seen before. 

So many sweet lessons came to mind. This blog used to be called "there's a lesson in everything" but has since changed... But I thought of things I was reminded today.

There is beauty in places you've never been before and it's in the details 

Bring your water, you'll be thirsty even if you're not sweating. Our bodies and souls thirst for what they need even when we might not be aware. Keep water and God close, always. 

One thing I noticed in the stream is that where there wasn't much sun there wasn't much growth of seaweed. We grow best where it's Light, and things grow towards the light. What a great reminder to be the light to so many in or lives if we want them to grow.

While I was paddling and paddling... I saw at least two different cranes. One let me get really close (within 10 ft) but the trick was that I had to be quiet. I couldn't be all crazy and loud. Reminded me of relationships and how being loud and crazy doesn't really bring anyone close, it really just drives them away (though I think there is time for loud, crazy, and fun)

I saw the underside of this bridge and noticed how the vines that had grown these had left such an impact and lasting impression in this bridge like the people in our lives, we must choose our friends wisely.

Our trash finds its way into other people's lives. We must clean up our mess and not just try to throw it about because if we don't handle our business, someone else may pay our consequences.

The last two times I went I saw this duck. She was different than most ducks we see. And she was by herself. This was the biggest one for me. God made this duck beautiful. 
Sure she was different, but she was alone. I wondered if she wished she looked like the others... I wondered if she thought she was beautiful, because if I'm gonna be honest right now, most days I don't feel beautiful. I feel like an ugly duckling. It reminded me of the family pictures we got taken. EVERYONE ELSE looked so cute, our photographer did a great job and I felt like I looked... UGLY.  Ugly duckling ugly. People have seen them and said they were cute, and I'm like "they are nice but... Me? Ew" everyone says I looked happy. I was happy, I spent time with my dad, my daughter, and our friend (who was our photographer).  I try to remember  that God made me His masterpiece, and that He makes no mistakes, not in that duck or in me. But on the days when I'm all alone, and I'm lonely (I'm not always lonely when I'm alone) I start to list all the reasons why I'm alone and that's an ugly ugly thing!  I remembered today that God makes no mistakes and His plan for our lives is perfect, even if we aren't perfect.

And stop at your favorite place to write and pray...


Thursday, September 01, 2016

Lessons in greatfulness

There are days when I think "man, I'm a lucky gal" ok so I don't actually use the word "gal" but probably girl... Probably should start saying woman cuz technically I'm old enough  to be a gramma (but I ain't rushin it)

Like seriously... Only God could have come up with MOD pizza. I mean even on its worst day (and today they needed some serious help!!!) it's delicious!! But then today I spent the evening in Detroit, and it was such a beautiful night! The sky was a masterpiece. The perfect blue... And then later the most gorgeous pinkie orangie color. 

I don't know why but lately I've been fascinated with bricks. I've been talking about my gpa and his brick laying and what a masterful art that it is. Today I was at 3fifty terrace for a worship night and there were these bricks that were the back drop of the worship leaders. I was enamored by them. Brick laying is an art, and I thought about how gods handiwork is like brick laying. He can make beauty out of the simplest things just by the way He arranges the things in our lives. The way things ebb and flow to make beautiful things out of the most simple things. 
Whenever I envision God changing hearts, I usually visualize a brick wall and how God seeps in through the cracks and just fills it in with grace and love.

I looked at this wall today and once again was just in awe of God's goodness and His grace, love, and mercy for me. 

Im just so thankful