Thursday, May 28, 2015

30 Day Gentleness Challenge

I love my blog.  I get to pick and choose what I share and pretend that I have it all together all the time.  HA!  Well, for those of you who know me personally, you know that is not the case.  One such thing that I love to hide is my temper.  It is unnerving how quickly I can lose my cool when my children don't listen or when plans get off track.  Everyone always says, "oh! that is normal - you are normal."  Well, God didn't make me to be normal.  He made me to be HIS child and to model his behavior - most especially to those I love the most.......the very ones who I have no problem hiding my temper.

This past year I joined my local Bible Study International.  We met every Wednesday from September through the first week of May for an indepth study on the life of Moses.  Though I gave my life over to the Lord several years ago, this focus truly helped me hone in on how to study the Bible and apply its lessons to my life.  I also made some very dear friends who have encouraged me and helped to truly, once and for all, turn over my demons and heartbreak over to the Lord.  While that was such a blessing, it filled me with anxiety because I was fearful that left to my own devices, I would break my faithful routine of reading the Word once our study was over.

After a couple of weeks of prayer, I finally asked the Lord to reveal to me an area of my life where I needed His guidance.  Not more than an hour after this prayer I found myself snipping at my children for tattletaleing.  It was clear, I needed to learn to be more patient, gentle and loving.  The very next week I ran across Galatians 5:22, which talks of the Fruit of the Spirit being:  love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness and self-control.  SMACK - there it was, right upside the head, everything I was lacking in modeling God to my children.  I knew there must be a better way.  It couldn't be "normal" to lose my temper with my children for simply doing what children do - test boundaries.  And so, after some research, God blessed me by letting me find the 30 Day Gentleness Challenge via Women Living Well.

I shared my idea with a few friends and was encouraged to start a small group.  I hosted our first gathering today and we are all prepared to start reading through Proverbs on June 1st.  I hope this post will encourage you to find a summer Bible Study group or even just a gathering of friends to meet with on a regular basis to give you a much needed release from the pressures of family life.  Even in the best of circumstances, there will always be stresses and it is important to find a healthy balance.  My preference is in the shelter of God's word.  I hope you'll join me.  I'll be posting my journey here and would love to have you come along.


Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Memorial Day

I hope you all had a great Memorial Day!  We had a ball as the wee ones beloved Granddaddy was in town, the pool opened and an extra day off made it really feel like summer.  We saw our first fire fly while enjoying ice cream sandwiches on the porch, which turned into the first hunt of the season.  Low Country Boil was on the menu, as always, and we made our annual visit to the Military Cemetery to pay tribute to the men and women who gave their lives for our freedom.  Two more days of school for my little and two and a half more weeks for Harrison.  The countdown to summer is on!!!!

Theris not to make reply.
Theris not to reason why,
Theirs but to do and die:
Into the valley of death
rode the six hundred.
 - Charge of the Light Brigade by Lord Alfred Tennyson

Always Remember......home of the free because of the brave.


Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Memorial Day Prep

We are counting down the days until summer here in Western NC.  The wee one has 4 more days of his sweet 3-year old preschool class and my "big boy" has three more weeks of kindergarten.  It saddens me to think how fast it is going by but I am thrilled for relaxing, lazy days spent by the pool. But the unofficial start to summer is this weekend as we usher in another fun-filled Memorial Day weekend.

We have been working hard getting our outdoor living spaces ready for summer fun and had a quick run through last weekend with our first cookout of the season.  We enjoyed grilled pork tenderloin, grilled squash and zucchini with crispy English potatoes.

We also made time for some silly family fun.  As you can see, at some point during the night I became the source for target practice. Ahhhhh- life with boys!

You must make these frozen banana treats.  Use whichever chocolate fondue or melting tablets you like, dip the cut up bananas, sprinkle with slivered almonds and freeze for an hour.  Thaw for a couple of minutes before serving.

Well, we still have some finishing touches to make for our Memorial Day festivities  but we are almost ready.

Bring on the summer fun!

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Derby Day

Today marks my favorite sporting event - the Kentucky Derby.  My parents were born and raised in Louisville, Kentucky, and I have so many wonderful memories of visiting as a young girl.  Chief among the fun things Louisville offers is the Derby.

We are actually attending a Derby party today so I am not making my usual Derby spread - maybe next year I will do a segment on Derby entertaining - but I did whip up some Bendedictine for lunch today.  Benedictine is a tricky spread to make and I don't usually like how runny it turns out.  I prefer a chunkier version so here is my recipe:

1/4 cup mayonnaise
3 ounces softened cream cheese
Dash of salt
Pinch of pepper
2 teaspoons chopped dill
One sliced up cucumber
Chill spread for at least 30 minutes.  Spread the mixture on bread of choice and line with sliced cucumber.

Well, I am off to prep for the party.  Nothing beats attending the Derby.  Put it on your bucket list if you haven't already.  Just skip the mint juleps - they look pretty but as my Daddy used to say, they simply ruin an otherwise perfectly good glass of bourbon.

Happy Derby Day!!!
Go Baby Go!