July 31, 2010

Do I know too much?

Infobesity. That's the word that caught my eye on my Google Reader feed today.

I consider myself somewhat discerning in the quality I allow my eyegate to take in. But does the sheer quantity of information that enters my head each day dilute the quality of the really good stuff I read and think about -- the stuff that matters, that helps me move toward my goals of being a more godly wife, mother, friend, person?

It was already something I'd been considering, something that my best friend / husband had brought to my attention. And now it has a name for me, thanks to Tim Challies' blog. Infobesity.

July 24, 2010

Just peachy!

We had a wonderful time last night with friends over for dinner. We love having folks into our home, and it's always fun to plan the menu. Last night's meal included squash, peas, and basil from our garden, as well as some tomatoes I picked up at our local farmer's market earlier in the week. Our local Publix has been carrying true Georgia peaches at a reasonable price, so I picked up a few of those, as well. Jeff was grilling pork chops for our main course; I thought it would be nice and summery to have some peach salsa to serve over those. Here's what I came up with:

3 medium peaches (ripe but firm) -- peel and dice
Half a lime -- squeeze juice over diced peaches and toss
1 jalapeno -- remove seeds and membrane*, chop finely
2-3 tbsp finely chopped onion
2 handfuls fresh cilantro, washed and coarsely chopped

Toss all ingredients together -- should make 2-3 cups of salsa.

This was great over the pork chops, and I think it would also be good on chicken or fish. I might serve it with regular tortilla chips or cinnamon chips. It might even be good over vanilla ice cream for dessert with a kick! It was also very pretty -- I wish I had taken a picture.

In case anyone wonders, our menu was:

Grilled porkchops (seasoned with garlic salt and lemon pepper)
Sauteed yellow squash and zucchini
Purple hull peas
Tomato and cucumber salad

And for dessert... triple chocolate cake with vanilla ice cream!

*you might want to wear gloves to do this -- the pepper oils linger and will affect other things you touch (food, your eyes, etc).

I linked up over at Eat at Home's Ingredient Spotlight: Fresh Herbs!

(Photo source: http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/images/)

July 15, 2010

The Ardent Sparrow does it again!

The Ardent Sparrow has another fabulous giveaway on her site -- this time, $20 in shop credit to Jewel Me Pretty by Rin (etsy store).  I was so charmed by the Time does not wait pocket watch that it stopped me in my tracks.

Do stop by both sites and see what you love, too!

July 14, 2010

Garden Update

Nothin' better than eating the literal fruits of your labors! We were a bit ambitious in the amount we planted in such a small area, but we'll let the veggies fight it out among themselves before we eat the winners!

(In the upper right corner, note the mother of all zucchini -- probably 14 inches long. Unfortunately, we now have two of these. Who knew that zucchini could hide so well? Looks like we'll be baking some of Mama's yummy zucchini bread!)
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July 4, 2010

Our Hope of Heaven

Our Bible study class this morning was on 1 Peter 3: 13-17. The teacher, David, began asking what exactly was the hope that Peter referred to. The hope is, of course, of heaven -- of the wonderful life beyond this life, when all of our daily trials are no more. Remembering that hope, that inevitability for the Christian, makes our day-to-day suffering (and even monotony) pale as our eyes look ahead to glory.

About ten years ago, my husband and I faced a very difficult and divisive church situation which seemed to get worse by the day. In the midst of that, the Lord provided the means for us to plan a romantic getaway to a beautiful inn on Amelia Island for a few days. Even that was delayed through a reservation glitch on the part of our lodging hosts, who graciously upgraded us to an oceanfront queen jacuzzi suite. Well, the worse our trial apeared to me, the more often I walked through the house chanting, "Oceanfront queen jacuzzi suite! Oceanfront queen jacuzzi suite!" I had hope in a future event and place which offered peace and contentment.

I thought about this during this morning's discussion. At first, I thought, "What a great earthly example of what our hope in heaven should look like!" But, suddenly convicted, I thought, "Why did I think only of my hope in 'oceanfront queen jacuzzi suite' instead of looking forward to heaven?" It's so easy for me to get caught up in temporal things, and then look to temporal things for relief.

Fernando Ortega does a good job of expressing the transformation I'd like to see in my heart:

One morning when time is done
Bright heaven will be our refuge
The city of God most high

I long for that holy day
This longing, sometimes it captures my heart
And carries me far away

Beyond the sky, beyond all telling
Our Father himself will be our light
His arms will hold us, and with his hands
He'll wipe away the tears that stain our eyes

When darkness falls over me
This promise, it's like a fire inside
Burning the dark away

Beyond the sky, beyond all telling
Our Father himself will be our light
His arms will hold us, and with his hands
He'll wipe away the tears that stain our eyes

(Click to listen to this beautiful song)

July 3, 2010

Happy Fourth!

Even though today is July 3, we've had lots of Independence Day celebration! I guess our town celebrated today because the 4th is on a Sunday. We started our day at the local parade, where we watched the crowd applaud both veterans and active duty military. The high school marching band set the tone with a patriotic tune. Local businesses participated, as well, and we saw our share of beauty queens and political candidates as they glad-handed and passed out candy and flags.

As the crowd cleared out, we wandered downtown to the farmer's market and bought beautiful heirloom tomatoes (wish I had taken a picture of them!), fresh flowers, and homemade salsa.

After taking care of a few things at home, we walked to the park for more fun. We checked out the vendors, then watched families enjoy the petting zoo, camel rides, and giant slide. When our thirst got the best of us, we bought some homemade lemonade before visiting with some newly-made friends for a while.

Dinner was everything a good 4th of July dinner should be -- grilled chicken, veggies from the garden, and ice cream for dessert. The grand finale was enjoying the fireworks from our back deck together. A great ending to a great day!

God is so good to provide these moments for us. Thank you, Lord, and help me to enjoy them fully.
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July 2, 2010

Immeasurable Grace

I was reminded today how immeasurable God's grace is. It is not limited by time, nor by distance. It made me think of our 2007 trip to the Grand Canyon. As I walked to the edge, my breath was taken away as I viewed the vastness of the Canyon. It was deeper and wider than my eyes could take in.

God's grace is even more vast than the Grand Canyon. That renewed realization let my mind to sing one of my favorite worship songs, one that I've not heard in a while.

Grace unmeasured, vast and free
That knew my from eternity
That called me out before my birth
To bring You glory on this earth.
Grace amazing, pure and deep
That saw me in my misery
That took my curse and owned my blame
So I could bear Your righeous name.

Grace abounding, strong and true
That makes me long to be like You
That turns me form my selfish pride
To love the cross on which you died.
Grace unending, all my days
You'll give me strength to run this race
And when my years on earth are through
The praise will all belong to You.

Grace paid for my sins
And brought me to life.
Grace clothes me with power
To do what is right.
Grace will lead me to heaven
Where I'll see your face
And never cease to thank You for Your grace.
Words and Music by Bob Kauflin, copyright 2005 Sovereign Grace Praise

May I ever be mindful and thankful for God's grace.