Today is my 31st birthday. To celebrate I made a list of 31 items I am thankful for from the past year. Here they are in a somewhat random order.
1. Salvation 2. God's provision for all my needs and many extras 3. phone calls and time spent with a godly gentleman who far exceeds my unrealistic expectations 4. my niece and nephews, brothers and sisters-in-love 5. my dad who provides for me and a mom who continually sacrifices for me 6. our military who fight overseas, so I do not face the reality of war and for being able to volunteer for the family program at the 110th Airlift Support Wing 7. my friends Tim and Erin allowing me to frequently visit their home and spend time with their children 8. crocheting for three weeks with Theresa 9.witnessing the miracle of Daphne's birth and spending Christmas with her big brother and sisters 10. the moment my dear friend Anna showed me her diamond while we were at Barnes and Noble and that she wasn't embarrassed by the scene I made 11. Anna taking me to my pre-surgery appointments and staying at the hospital with me 12. a giant puppy who is always glad when his mama gets home 13. six year old Noah who still gives me kisses and thinks I am fun to spend time with 14. nine year old Miranda who goes on adventures with me and counts me as a best friend 15. holding baby Tara and sleep overs with her three older sisters 16. my aunts and uncles who take such good care of me 17. going to my doctor's office is one of the highlights of my social life 18. books 19. dark chocolate 20. Trader Joe's and Whole Foods 21. bunnies and guinea 22. letters from Theresa, Amanda and Melissa 23. all the times that Isabella and Adelaide say, "Miss Sarah Potter, I love you" 24. tea 25. homemade gifts that arrive in the mail from Wyoming 26. a sewing machine from my parents 27. IV's and acupuncture given by the very best nurses and acupuncturist 28. Karmen asking me to teach soap making and being a constant encouragement to me 29. I felt well enough to sleep in a tent in 17 degree weather 30.the MANY people God has put in my life to show His love, grace and provision to me 31. life,breath and strength, that the birthday I celebrated four years ago from a hospital bed was not my last and that God always does exceedingly abundantly beyond all I can think or imagine
On the third day the friends of Christ coming at daybreak to the place found the grave empty and the stone rolled away. In varying ways they realized the new wonder; but even they hardly realized that the world had died in the night. What they were looking at was the first day of a new creation, with a new heaven and a new earth; and in a semblance of the gardener God walked again in the garden, in the cool not of the evening but of the dawn. - G.K. Chesterton (The Everlasting Man)
“There is a stage in a child’s life at which it cannot separate the religious from the merely festal character of Christmas or Easter. I have been told of a very small and very devout boy who was heard murmuring to himself on Easter morning a poem of his own composition which began ‘Chocolate eggs and Jesus risen.’ This seems to me, for his age, both admirable poetry and admirable piety. But of course the time will soon come when such a child can no longer effortlessly and spontaneously enjoy that unity. He will become able to distinguish the spiritual from the ritual and festal aspect of Easter; chocolate eggs will no longer seem sacramental. And once he has distinguished he must put one or the other first. If he puts the spiritual first he can still taste something of Easter in the chocolate eggs; if he puts the eggs first they will soon be no more than any other sweetmeat. They will have taken on an independent, and therefore a soon withering, life.” ~C. S. Lewis
I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else. - C. S. Lewis
"Last night when we were sound asleep, the snow fell fast, the snow piled deep, when morning came and we looked out, the snow was lying all about. The wind was blowing high and low, and wrinkling up the pure white snow; and everywhere that we could see, we found that God made mystery." ~Marguerite Church Clark
Last month I house-sat for friends who had a case of Miller Chicken Sausage in their freezer. When I read the ingredient label I was pleasantly surprised to find that the sausage is something I can eat.
Rice and Chicken Sausage
In a medium saucepan combine 1/3 cup rice with 2/3 cup water and bring to a boil. Allow to boil for one-two minutes. Add a generous amount of Turmeric and if the sausage is frozen place it in the pan at this time. Cover, reduce heat and simmer for 30-40 minutes. Slice sausage and mix with the rice. Season with sea salt and pepper.
"It's too bad we didn't get shipwrecked with a nice automobile or at least a pony and cart. But shipwrecks are so unexpected, you never know what you're going to need until it's too late."
Dumbing Us Down by John Taylor Gatto
"...slowly I began to realize that the bells and the confinement, the crazy sequences, the age-segregation, the lack of privacy, the constant surveillance, and all the rest of the national curriculum of schooling were designed exactly as if someone had set out to prevent children from learning how to think and act, to coax them into addiction and dependent behavior."
"We were something special, we Americans, all by ourselves, without government sticking its nose into and measuring every aspect of our lives..."
"...a combination of television and the stresses peculiar to two-income or single-parent families has swallowed up most of what used to be family time as well. Our kids have no time left to grow up fully human..."
"Of all the pages in the human ledger, only our tortured country has warehoused children and asked nothing of them in service of the general good."