Tuesday, October 30, 2012


We are safe and we thank God!
We've had lots of rain and wind but we are SAFE!
My heart aches for those who have lost family and home.

Before the storm, I said good-bye to autumn as most of the leaves are down.
- before Sandy passed through -

All is well today!

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

This Olde House...

A local business bought a property with an old house on it and dismantled it for another purpose. The house was a 'free-for-all' to anyone wanting to take windows, doors, etc. Mr D and I went up to see what we could salvage. There was a lot more I wanted such as the roof of the small porch but settled for some windows and doors. Mr D is sooo good to me and my ideas!

Mr D cut the doors so I could use the window section - boy, are they heavy! 
It's hanging in the front by the garage door, spiffied up for Autumn.
free window
two bucks for the twiggy wreath
 'a dollar a peice' pumpkins 
 a dollar yard sale chair, weathered beautifully 
 rusty wagon our children played with
free leaves from the neighbour :)
Close up at sunset.

Ragu Sauce

Some years back when son L was in Haiti for several months, we spent a week with him. While there, we became acquainted with Doreen and her husband from Ohio. Doreen is a pro at cooking and talked about a pizza sauce that is baked in the oven. I kept it in the back of my head and this summer I finally made it.

The first step:
cut tomatoes in half and lay cut side down in 10x15 pan
bake at 350 for 20-30 min or until skins crack
let cool, peel and remove white-ish core and squish with hands
(I like chunks in my sauce but it can also be blended)

Ragu Sauce
8-10 quarts tomato sauce

3 lbs diced onion
4 green peppers
2 bulbs garlic
1 cop cut-up celery
1 cup olive oil

blend in and mix well:
1 tbsp pepper
5 tblsp parsley flakes
1 tblsp oregano
1 tsp basil
1 tblsp worcestershire sauce
These ingredients can be blended in a blender before adding rest of ingredients.
I did not because, again, I like chunky sauce.

add and mix well:
1/3 c salt
1/2 c sugar
1 lg can tomato sauce

Place all ingredients in large roasting pan. Bake at 350 degrees 2-3 hrs or till desired thickness.
Process in jars.
I chose to freeze the sauce.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Rearranged Living Room

I've been wanting to rearrange the living room for awhile; however, Mr D doesn't like changes as much as I do. On a quick notion one afternoon, I moved the couch to a wall and was pleased when Mr D was impressed. It was full steam ahead! In the process, I skimmed back a few other places too, and I'm pleased with the results.
The first change: moving the couch in front of the fireplace. I saw this idea in a magazine and liked it.
 The second move: moving the recliner to the other side. I refer to these chairs as "papa Bear and mama Bear's chairs!' *smile!*
The third change: moving this table between the office and dinning room doors.
The fourth change: getting rid of the game table and placing this chair by the window.
Rustic elegance on the window ledge!
From the four corners...
 from the bedroom...
 the west corner...
 the dinning room door...
and the front door.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Healthy Shredded Wheat Snack

I love healthy recipes that taste good and this is one of them. I've always liked shredded wheat, particularly the bite-sized Bran n Wheat. When Mr D and I went grain-free, this is what I missed the most. I've made this twice for special occasions and both times the scales went up so this must be a once-in-a-blue-moon recipe for us as I'm the fondest of it! This recipe came from my friend Iva - don't you just love friends for recipes among the other obvious things?! The recipe came with out a title, so I'll just call it...

Shredded Wheat Delight

1 large box of Shredded Wheat

1 c. butter, melted
2tsp. Italian seasoning
1 1/2 tsp. onion powder
1 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
 1/4 tsp. hot pepper sauce
1-2 c. pecan halves
mix the above ingredients before adding to shredded wheat and mix thoroughly
bake @ 250 for 20-30 min., stirring once

* shredded wheat can be replaced with other chex cereals
* pecans can be replaced with nut of choice 

Monday, October 8, 2012

Praise Page

Today, my heart is filled with praise!
 Not because our circumstances have changed - they haven't.
My heart is filled with praise because of the amazing community of believers.
They care!
They pray!
They bless!
They encourage!
They listen without without giving old, worn out cliches!
Family and friends are a bright, shinning light in the middle of the hard stuff.
Thank you, Martha, for making a meal on chemo day - the chicken noodle soup hit the spot!
Thank you, Julia, for sitting with your father on chemo days - it helps to make a long day go fast!
Thank you, Rachel, for praying for me in church yesterday!
A season, a time, a purpose -
I'm thankful when life doesn't make sense, God is still sovereign!
I rest in that.
It's the work of God that makes my heart beautiful in the midst of pain. 
I'm so grateful Mr D has no pain...
the pain he had this summer left the afternoon of our anointing and has not returned!
James 4:14-16
We're married forty-three years.
Though celebrating fifty years together is uncertain,
I still believe the best is yet to be!
 Facing our future feels uncertain in a new way, but we count and enjoy every gift we have for the moment!
The chemo treatments Mr D is getting are intensive but he doesn't get sick.
He's missed only one day of work since the treatments began the end of August.
Life has slowed down in some ways but in other ways it's become sweeter.

Do you have a praise page?

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Crock Pot Yogurt

Thanks to my friend Sari, I've been making the easiest and oh-so-simple, delicious yogurt!
Without further ado, these are the instructions...

Step 1. Pour one gallon of milk in a crock pot.
Cover with lid and on lowest setting, let heat for two and one half hours.
Step 2. Unplug and let sit for three hours, covered with lid.
Step 3. Stir in one cup yogurt and sweetener of choice - I use 3/4 tsp of stevia.
Cover with towels and let sit for eight hours.
The picture above is after this step. Stir well with whisk till smooth.
This can be used like this after chilling in refrigerator but I prefer making Greek yogurt as the next step.
 Step 4 (optional). I line the bottom of this Tupperware strainer with a coffee filter, set it inside another container and pour the yogurt in, letting it drain till desired thickness.
The next picture is the product of an overnight stay in the frig.
 I give it a good stir with a whisk again and pour into containers.
Yield: two quarts yogurt - two quarts whey.
If you Google whey, you'll find the many ways it can be used. 
Favorite ways to eat yogurt:

eating with baked oatmeal
 yogurt parfait deliciousness
just as it is for a quick snack!

Coming up next:
two more food recipes to share.
It's time to play catch-up on them!

Edited January, 2013:

I tried almond meal milk without success.
Do not use frozen/thawed yogurt as a starter for the next batch - major fail!
 I'm guessing the culture 'froze out.'
1 tbsp vanilla can be added with the starter for added flavor.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Sibling Week End

Spending a few days together as siblings is never taken for granted! As we get older, all of us realize that a 'until next year' good-bye may be different. We love spending this time together! Lest you think it always was this way - it wasn't. I'm constantly amazed at the wondrous healing God did in our lives, both personally and collectively. We laugh and cry together, we pray with and encourage each other. We speak blessing into each other's lives. It is GOOD!

It was beautiful!
 Walking the trail.
The little ones are sis-ta Lil's grandbabies. They live IN and their daughter lives in PA
so they spent the day with us. Little L is leading the way,
splashing and 'fishing' in puddles and the creek!
 Love the texture of stone, wood, fern and mushroom.
Playing games while smoking the ribs.
 Soooo delicious!
E trying to stay warm.
The gang...
 and seven of eleven siblings. We missed the others!