Monday, November 5, 2012

Let the Blues Overcome Me

Not certain how or why but at least once a year, I let the Blues run me down ... well that was the case this past weekend. So first, let's 'ketchup':
Day 3: I am thankful for friends who can be out of sight/mind for long periods of time and then call to say 'I'll be in your area, would you' ... On Friday, I was so happy to see one of the clerks who worked in my office in 1992 in Luxembourg -- it has been 20 years since we have seen one another but ... what an awesome visit I had with Christine Cerf and Mary-Louise Richer. They have been cross-country traveling and graced me with a visit for lunch here at my work location before going on to the West Side.
Day 4: Spent the day being blue! Attended church which was uplifting, Skype'd twice with my hubby, talked with my daughter and sister Linda, but .... in the midst of my 'blue period,' I realize that I am thankful when I have company in the house -- don't get me wrong, I love my solitude but I really feel blessed when my hubby is home. The boys, Bubba and Armani, and Ms. Lily are good companions but they don't offer the humor, savvy, or love that I get when my husband is home. Bottom line: I am so thankful that God blessed me with Michael Patten. I know I have covered that already but ... I am also so thankful that I live in a country where I can choose to gather with other Christians to lift up our country in prayer.

Friday, November 2, 2012

November -- Month of Thankfulness Trust me, this is not the only month that I am thankful for all that I am and I owe it all to the glory of Christ Jesus who died for my sins before I was even born! However, I am going to get back into the habit of posting daily ... preparing for my retirement from Federal Government service which will happen 1 June 2013. Yesterday, I was greeted with an envelope on my desk (no one knows who put it there) with a certificate for winning a costume contest at our Commander's Call -- inside was a gift card for Subway, a place that I can get a healthy sandwich. For this surprise, I am very thankful. Here is my costume:
Today I am thankful for my immediate family -- an absolutely amazing husband, Michael Patten; a loving daughter and son-in-law, Melissa and Josh Williams; two wonderful step-children, Mike Jr and wife Sandra, Mike III and Alex; and Erin and David Torres, Jonas Hicks, and Olivia Torres.

Monday, September 3, 2012

September 3, Last Day of Being 63

Today I am embarking on Phase II of my weight loss journey -- I have successfully kept off 23.3 lbs for over 2 years; it is time to take another 20-lb plunge toward ONEderland. I weighed in at 206.6 and I am setting my first mini goal for 30 September and a loss of 10 pounds. As unbecoming as these photos are, this is how I look today:
I will be posting weekly updates on my weight and a monthly photo. I am planning to walk a 5K charity event on the 15th of September and again on the 29th of September. I am also going to help compete on our Training Center's rowing competition == 100,000 meters between the period 15 September and 15 October. I want to sail into retirement at the end of the year weighing 166.6.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Psalm 139:4 “You know what I am going to say even before I say it, Lord.”

Oh my goodness, so many people are hurting in so many ways .... like the words of one of my favorite songs, ' we pour out our miseries, God just hears a melody.'  A young mother with two small children is fighting for breath tonight in the St Louis area -- she was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer last November; she never complains and her faith is so rock strong!  My younger brother is having a manic episode and has been hospitalized on a 96-hour hold; praying he will cooperate and realize he must follow his medication regimen to stay on the even keel. Reading Isaiah 24 today at the bequest of my husband -- so many telling prophesies in this particular chapter.  Lord hear our cries; your will be done! On a lighter note, spent much of the day trying to catch up emails from this past week -- not sure where all my time went but .... made pancake cupcakes with maple bacon buttercream frosting for our church's men's breakfast early this morning.  Hubby went to the firing range with his new Ruger Scout rifle.  Completed my first block of a new sampler quilt I am working on:

  Completed a jelly roll quilt top recently -- this is a completely new crafting outlet for me.
Tomorrow, after church, I will be attempting a mini tag album and a smash book! I am usually just a card or ATC maker so .... wish me luck. Recent cards and ATCs include:

Thursday, July 26, 2012

New Challenges

Life has a way of taking us back to reality ... when I don't take the time to spend daily time in my Quiet Spot I find I run into lots of walls!  Biggest challenge right now is decision on retirement -- you might say, what's to decide?  Many fibers in my being say 'let's just stay home today and play,' but my real fibers say you know you enjoy working --- or more, I enjoy being a servant to others!  It would be so awesome to find a job that I am passionate about.  So, I have been spending lots of time making lists, reflecting, and seeking wisdom on what to do about retirement. 

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Good morning from the sunny Pacific Northwest ... no rain this AM! Nice plate of 'polenta' for breakfast and about to ready myself for Palm Sunday services.

Today we celebrate the triumphal entry of our Saviour, Jesus Christ, into Jerusalem. This marks the beginning of Holy Week. Sad to think that many of those who greeted him with Hosannas, waving palm branches, would taunt him in just a week as he hung on a cross to save you and me! Have a fabulous day!

Friday, March 30, 2012

One Quarter of the Year 2012 ~~~ Gone!

WOW, where did three months of this year go? Seems like it was only yesterday we were ringing in the new year ... and now hear we are at the end of March! Exhausting just thinking about all the joys we've shared, fears we've faced, and life-altering decisions we've made!

Today it is raining here in Yakima and tomorrow we are volunteering at the Yakima Canyon Marathon ~~ hoping the rain will subside for at least the morning hours!

Looking ahead to April, it will be an honor to celebrate Easter -- I am so humbled to think that Jesus went to the cross to save me!

A week following Easter, my sister (Becky) and cousin (Cathy) will attend the Women of Joy conference in Oklahoma City. I know we are going to be truly blessed: Speakers are Stormie Omartian, Pam Tebow, Anita Renfroe, Lisa Harper and Charles Billingsley. The concert will be Casting Crowns with Matthew West and Royal Tailor. So looking forward to this event!

Friday, March 23, 2012

My dear husband bought me this most wonderful gift yesterday! I can hardly wait until the work day is over to start finding out about it and using it. I love to prep veggies, etc., for the week's meals as it is so much quicker to get a great meal on the table during the week. Oh, the possibilities!!!

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Random .... there's that word again!

There is nothing random about any aspect of my life, and I’m not in charge of its destination. God is. He is sovereign, not random. Therefore, my life path is sovereignly superintended by a loving God. This message came through loud and clear in numerous ways this morning!

First, I had a random conversation with my sister Linda where we discussed how God gives us free will and even though we make the wrong choice, that choice is in His plan for our lives and He will provide the moment of redemption for us to get back on the right path.

Second, reading my devotionals (this one from Women of Faith) and Marilyn Meberg supplied the beginning paragraph of my post today.

Third, our Command Sergeant Major has 32 years in the Army and is anxious about retiring because he really wants to continue to work and ... he stopped at my door this morning and we also discussed how nothing is random in our lives -- God has a plan for him ... and for me (also contemplating retirement this year).

I thank God every single moment of every day that NOTHING IS RANDOM in my life!

Monday, March 19, 2012

Monday, Monday

What can I say about Monday? I am always exhausted when I come home from work on Monday -- it's a mental thing because Monday is not really any harder than any other day of the week!

I happened on this Bible verse today during my blogging and studying: Ephesians 2:10, "For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." I found solace in this verse because it means I don't have to do everything, be superwoman, etc.; I only have to do what God purposed for me.

Began reading "You're Already Amazing" by Holley Gerth today for Bloom (in)courage book club -- wonderful way to read a book and chat with the author and other women as we all dig into the book and God's word together. I have the book on my Kindle reader, along with my Bible for easy cross-referencing.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

R is for ....

Random ... my daughter is always telling me, 'Mom, that is so random.' What is random? Random: Having no specific pattern, purpose, or objective. Hmmm, I am pretty certain that I do have a specific pattern, purpose, or objective but sometimes those get twisted about like spaghetti on my plate! I find myself jumping from here to there and leaving plenty of unfinished business. So, beginning today, I am going to be less random!

Redeemed ... in church this morning, this blog post came to my head -- Redeemed: to buy or pay off; clear by payment; to recover by payment or other satisfaction; to exchange for money or goods. As we enter this Easter season, I am sorely reminded of how my Redeemer paid my debts by dying on the cross. And what can I do to repay that sacrifice -- live my life to His glory! To spin the words of Steven Curtis Chapman, 'As you do everything you do to the glory of the One who made you cause He made you to do every little thing that you do to bring a smile to His face.'

Repent ... never a day goes by that I do not find myself asking God to forgive me for sins I have committed in word, thought and deed, knowingly or unknowingly. I am so thankful that He is a loving God and saves me by grace when I fall, even repeatedly. Life would not be the same without this personal relationship with the Father.

Reborn ... born or as if born again, esp in having undergone spiritual regeneration! Being reborn, a born-again Christian, has changed who I am forever. The day I realized I couldn't do it all alone and asked God to come into my heart was the best day of my life! I thank God for so many, many blessings -- even adversities because they make my relationship with Him stronger --- and I hope you, too, will find this same rejuvenating water of life!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

St Patrick's Day

Mike and I decided to have bangers and mash for our St Patrick's Day dinner instead of the usual corned beef and cabbage. He found the bangers at our local COSTCO store. First, I browned up the bangers in a little unsalted butter. Next I sauteed some onions in the drippings and added brown gravy mix, stirring and reducing the heat until it thickened.
Forgot to mention that before I started this process, I placed our potatoes in the microwave to cook --thanks to our good friends, Butch & Lynn Lott, we never cook or bake potatoes on the conventional stove --

Once the onion gravy has thickened, spread about half on the bottom of your baking pan, layer the bangers, and cover with the other half of the onion gravy.

Mash your potatoes with butter, salt, pepper and enough milk to make them creamy. Layer them on top of the bangers with gravy: Bake at 350 degrees F for approximately 20 minutes.

While the main dish was baking, I used a Bobby Flay recipe to saute fresh kale for our green side dish -- kale must be an acquired taste and I don't think we will have it again but ... it was pretty and the garlic was great!

Dinner was served and we watched Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close after dinner -- intense movie but very insightful.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

A Brand New Year

My, my, my ... where oh where did 2011 go? I must admit that I was glad to ring in this new year of 2012 because I wanted to erase the last few months of 2011. As many of you know, my daughter was in a serious automobile accident on 18 November; by the grace of God her life was spared and altho' she suffered a broken left clavicle, two breaks and numerous fractures in her pelvis, she was still with us. She is on the mend and, in time, God will heal and repair all the hurts.

New Year's Day found Mike, Armani, Bubba, and I homeward bound from Utah -- a long 10-hr drive with only one stop for gas, potty, and food to go! Having been away from home since 1 December, I had lots of mail to go through. Accomplished that and went to bed at 6:15, up at 12:30, back to bed at 2:00 until 7:30! Needed the rest to de-stress, rejuvenate, and prepare for the return to work, etc.

Really enjoyed just relaxing, playing on the computer, and contemplating craft projects for the coming month on Monday. Unpacked, washed all the laundry, and had a great dinner of salmon with ginger butter.

On Tuesday, returned to my job ... very glad I have one when so many are seeking employment and unable to find it! Thankful that I didn't have too many emails to wade through or phone messages which had gone unanswered during my hiatus. Mike made BBQ ribs in the crockpot and some dirty rice ... dinner was absolutely scrumptious!

Wednesday found me dragging a bit ... tried to wrap myself around college homework but just couldn't! That means I will be crashing tonight to get my threads answered before the due time of midnight on the East Coast. Dinner last night was hot soup and grilled cheese sandwiches like only Dad can make! Tonight we will join with my office mates for our monthly Dinner Club -- Zesta Cucina -- should be enjoyable and tasty!