Category Archives: recipes

Fun Friday and the weekend

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This art exhibition was a birthday party for the 100th anniversary of the 19th amendment, women’s rights, identity and women in society.

Saturday James and I took a walk down Tennyson and watched the cruising cars that were part of the Elitch Garden Theater’s 130th anniversary celebration.

In the evening the girls Jack-sat while James and I went to Golden Moon Speakeasy, we only had one drink there and then moved to Buffalo Rose (the music at Golden Moon was horrible.) That was a shame because GM has really good drinks.

But, Buffalo Rose has a fireplace.

Sunday, From church, we threw a new intern onto stage and he rose to the challenge. Great job Charles Postell!

Philippians – What is your ending, what are you remembered for?
Paul wrote to the church with three prayers in mind.
-That they would abound in love, loving others greatly and well.
-That they would grow in discernment and lean into the fruits of righteousness.
-That they would live in a way that would make others want to love Jesus.
This means choosing to love those with a different mind, different life walk, different political views. Growing in discernment means to learn as you grow and grow as you learn. Living a blameless, pure life (not a perfect one) so people can trust you and be receptive to your message which is – the absolute pursuit of God. Living so close to Jesus that everyone can see who you follow. When people meet you, what is their first impression? When you leave, what do they remember? When Paul wrote to the church, they remembered him as one who God saved, one that was in jail, suffering, but always worshipped God. Paul remembers the church as a group of people who walked alongside him, fed him, prayed with him, and praised God with him. Paul’s goal was to get everyone involved in the glory and praise of God – to love greatly, grow wisely and let others see Jesus – to be the church to those that need it the most.
Philippians 1:1-2 Paul and Timothy, both of us committed servants of Christ Jesus, write this letter to all the followers of Jesus in Philippi, pastors and ministers included. We greet you with the grace and peace that comes from God our Father and our Master, Jesus Christ. 3-6 Every time you cross my mind, I break out in exclamations of thanks to God. Each exclamation is a trigger to prayer. I find myself praying for you with a glad heart. I am so pleased that you have continued on in this with us, believing and proclaiming God’s Message, from the day you heard it right up to the present. There has never been the slightest doubt in my mind that the God who started this great work in you would keep at it and bring it to a flourishing finish on the very day Christ Jesus appears.
7-8 It’s not at all fanciful for me to think this way about you. My prayers and hopes have deep roots in reality. You have, after all, stuck with me all the way from the time I was thrown in jail, put on trial, and came out of it in one piece. All along you have experienced with me the most generous help from God. He knows how much I love and miss you these days. Sometimes I think I feel as strongly about you as Christ does!
9-11 So this is my prayer: that your love will flourish and that you will not only love much but well. Learn to love appropriately. You need to use your head and test your feelings so that your love is sincere and intelligent, not sentimental gush. Live a lover’s life, circumspect and exemplary, a life Jesus will be proud of: bountiful in fruits from the soul, making Jesus Christ attractive to all, getting everyone involved in the glory and praise of God.
James and I went on a walk around Johnson lake and then had lunch on the patio at The Tavern, it was nice.
In the evening we sat on the porch and Jack brought his rope ball.
Dinners this week – pizza, Thai orange pork with rice and broccoli, cashew apricot chicken with asparagus and salad, spinach alfredo lasagna, tamale pie, Keema aloo with naan, out.
Cashew crusted apricot chicken
1 (12 ounce) jar apricot preserves
¼ cup prepared Dijon-style mustard
1 teaspoon curry powder
4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
1 cup coarsely chopped cashews
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F
Combine the preserves, mustard and curry powder in a large skillet and heat over low heat, stirring constantly, until preserves are completely melted and smooth.
Place cashews in a shallow dish or bowl. Dip chicken breasts in skillet sauce, then roll in nuts to coat and place in a lightly greased 9×13 inch baking dish.
Bake at 375 degrees F for 20 to 30 minutes. Boil any remaining sauce and serve on the side with the baked chicken.

Snow is coming

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Sunday – From church – A vibrant spiritual life is full of faith filled anticipation and expectations. God is a God of forgiveness, no one is perfect; we all have our mountain highs and valley lows, that’s why God sent Jesus to come alongside us. Don’t run ahead of God – thinking you know what He wants, but also don’t be afraid to follow Him. Live your life, be awake, pay attention to God’s call, be patient and wait with wisdom on Him, not running ahead or falling behind – but walking where He leads. He comes with the things He wishes we would give to others – love and forgiveness, but even if people can’t give you those things – God can.
Psalm 130
1-2 Help, God—the bottom has fallen out of my life!
Master, hear my cry for help!
Listen hard! Open your ears!
Listen to my cries for mercy.
3-4 If you, God, kept records on wrongdoings,
who would stand a chance?
As it turns out, forgiveness is your habit,
and that’s why you’re worshiped.
5-6 I pray to God—my life a prayer—
and wait for what he’ll say and do.
My life’s on the line before God, my Lord,
waiting and watching till morning,
waiting and watching till morning.
7-8 O Israel, wait and watch for God—
with God’s arrival comes love,
with God’s arrival comes generous redemption…
Dinners this week – Olive Garden, grillin’ stuff, beef stew with zucchini tomato bread, black bean and sweet potato burritos with salad, sausage and fried cabbage with beet salad, lemon garlic tilapia with cream corn and brussel sprouts, grilled cheese and tomato soup
Zucchini bread with sun dried tomatoes
1/3 cup chopped sun dried tomatoes
4 small/medium zucchini
1 1/2 tablespoon salt
1 3/4 cups whole wheat flour
2 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/3 cup butter, melted
1/3 cup coconut palm sugar (I am going to use less than that)
2 teaspoons dried rosemary
Rind of 1/2 lemon
2 eggs
1/4 cup water
Soak the sun dried tomatoes overnight in a bowl of water. Rinse. Grate the zucchini and mix with 1/2 tablespoon salt in a bowl. Set aside for 10 minutes, and then put in a cheese cloth and press to drain all the water. You should end up with about 1 cup of very well pressed and compacted grated zucchini. Preheat the oven to 350° F. Mix the flour, baking powder, 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper in a bowl.
Mix the butter, sugar, rosemary, lemon rind, eggs and water in another bowl. Add the zucchini and the chopped and rehydrated sun-dried tomatoes (you can chop up the tomatoes into even smaller pieces before doing this). Mix well. Incorporate the dried ingredients and mix well until it becomes a uniform dough.
Transfer the dough to a non stick 9×5-inch baking pan. Bake the bread for 40 minutes, and then start checking every five minutes until it’s ready. You’ll know it’s ready when you pinch it with a knife and it comes out clean. Let the bread cool for 15 minutes. Run a knife along the edges and unmold.

Labor day was hot. There was a lot of smoke from a fire up in Ft. Collins, still, James, Jack and I went to the pond for a dip. We grilled hamburgers and steak, I made watermelon agua fresca, we watched some Perry Mason, took a drive and had a holiday drink at Phil’s.

Tuesday it rained, then started to snow, then stopped for a bit. Jack and I went for a walk, we haven’t picked plums yet and now we may not get to. If it snows too much they will just drop on the ground and I’m not sure how the ones left hanging will taste, so I may have missed my plum butter opportunity. James and Joel went to the range while the girls and I did some school and made zucchini tomato bread. After dinner we watched another Perry Mason while the snow fell.

Wednesday I went to NIA and Jack was not happy about the amount of snow we got. He did meet a little wren friend though (don’t worry it flew off after a few of Jack’s sniffs.)

We had a cosplay tea in the afternoon.

Thursday urban walk with Jack.

Weekend

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I found a HUGE tomato horn-worm, Grace took it in and is hoping to get it to grow into a moth.

James, Grace and I went to Breakfast Queen to try it out – it was GOOD! I need to go back because I saw they serve Monte Cristo sandwiches!

Grace made some art.

The hummingbirds flitted around.

James spent the afternoon wiping 3 computers, moving 3 desks and 3 chairs upstairs to get rid of.

Sunday I went to church and then we went to Stanley to hear LAPOMPE.

From church -A little help for my friends
Shame, how does the gospel address shame?
Godly sorrow based on truth is guilt that leads to change. Shame is based on lies that lead to hurt, isolation, self-loathing, destruction, feeling like you are unlovable or not important. Shame diminishes us and makes us feel like a failure. Shame speaks to our identity, how we see ourselves and how we think others see us. Only the gospel can remove shame and restore our true identity – children of God, created in His image, part of His plan to redeem us and restore us. Shame is not part of God’s creation, it is a barrier. What are you using to cover your shame? Will it ever be enough? The more you cover shame, the more you pile on, the more isolated you become and the farther you get from a loving God because you feel unworthy. Jesus invites us as sons and daughters to come into His presence, remove shame and cover ourselves with peace. What can separate us from the love of God – nothing.
Genesis 2:25 The two of them, the Man and his Wife, were naked, but they felt no shame.
Luke 8: 43-45 In the crowd that day there was a woman who for twelve years had been afflicted with hemorrhages. She had spent every penny she had on doctors but not one had been able to help her. She slipped in from behind and touched the edge of Jesus’ robe. At that very moment her hemorrhaging stopped. Jesus said, “Who touched me?”…..46 Jesus insisted, “Someone touched me. I felt power discharging from me.” 47 When the woman realized that she couldn’t remain hidden, she knelt trembling before him. In front of all the people, she blurted out her story—why she touched him and how at that same moment she was healed. 48 Jesus said, “Daughter, you took a risk trusting me, and now you’re healed and whole. Live well, live blessed!”
Romans 8:1 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
I John 3:1 See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!
I was wearing my Popsicle earrings and Popsicle socks.
Grace made a mermaid costumed angler fish.
Dinners this week (starting today) – Shrimp and grits with cornbread and salad, chicken parmesan skillet with fruit salad, turkey veggie meatloaf cups with mashed potatoes and tex-mex salad, mojito lime pork tacos with jicama salad, corn chowder with pretzel rolls and salad, chicken apple walnut salad with veggie soup, out. Notice – a lot of frickin’ salad.
Corn Chowder Recipe
1 tablespoon butter
1 strip bacon, or 1 teaspoon bacon fat
1/2 large yellow onion, chopped (about 3/4 cup)
1/3 cup diced red bell pepper
1/2 cup small diced carrot
4-5 ears of sweet corn, kernels removed from the cobs (about 3 cups), cobs reserved (see steps for taking corn off the cob)
1 bay leaf
4 1/2 cups milk, whole or low fat
2 medium Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and large (1-inch) diced (about 3 cups)
3 teaspoons of Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
Cook the bacon: Place butter and bacon into a large, heavy-bottomed soup pot. Heat on medium heat until the bacon renders its fat, 3-4 minutes.
Cook the vegetables (except the corn and potatoes): Add the chopped onions, red bell pepper, carrot, lower the heat to medium low and cook until vegetables soften, about 5 minutes.
Add corn cobs and bring to a simmer: Break the corn cobs in half (after you’ve stripped off the corn) and add the cobs to the pot. Add the milk and the bay leaf. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to a bare simmer. Cover the pot and cook for 20 minutes. Make sure the heat is as low as can be and still maintain a gentle simmer to prevent scalding the milk on the bottom of the pan.
Add potatoes: After 20 minutes, add the potatoes, salt, and thyme to the pot. Increase the heat to return the soup to a simmer, then lower the heat to maintain the simmer and cook for another 10 minutes. Finish the soup: Discard the cobs, the bacon strip, and the bay leaf. Add the corn kernels and black pepper. Again raise the heat to bring the soup to a simmer, then lower the heat and cook for another 5 minutes, until the potatoes are fork tender. Add more salt and pepper to taste.

Weekend

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Saturday James, Jack and I started the day with affogato at our favorite coffee shop (for affogato anyway.) Then we headed to Georgetown for a paddle.

It was smoky there (of course.)

When we got to the other side Jack jumped ship to be with James.

And it got windy (of course.) We pulled up to the dock by Cabin Creek Brewery and had lunch and drinks. We almost lost the yellow kayak, it blew away but got stuck in an inlet – whew!

We took the long way home over Guanella pass and saw some big horn sheep.

Geneva creek.

Sunday James left for GJ to switch cars with Bethany (her tags are done, it’s good to go.) I cleaned the house and we all went for a walk in Englewood (and to the Army surplus store.)

I had leftovers for lunch but made a Thai tuna salad for dinner.

Dinners this week – leftovers!! beef stroganoff with salad, flat bread pizzas (meat/olives and peach/cashew/feta/balsamic), meatball subs with fruit salad, bratwurst with smashed potatoes and broccoli, veggie pot pie, out

 

Weekend

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Saturday – date drive (I could do these every weekend!)

We had coffee at our normal Saturday spot, then headed to Buena Vista to have lunch at River Runner’s grill.

A shady table with an Arkansas river view, some good drinks, music and food.

Then, we took the scenic route home which included a stop in Canon city to see the soon to be restored St. Cloud Hotel.

Then we headed toward Pueblo for a Bingo Burger stop. We had shakes and Brussel sprouts, Jack had a baby Bingo burger.

We finally made it home at 8pm, just in time for some Diners, Drive ins and Dives.

Sunday, From church – A little help for my friends – Anxiety and worry

People, humans, have this desire to be in control, but we live in a world full of uncertainty. This is not the only time in history that we have been on information overload and living in uncertain times – but now more than ever people are anxious and worried, people might feel like their particular worry is something no one else has to deal with. Our culture emphasizes self sufficiency, human nature itself leans to pride, but we were never meant to carry the huge weight of worry and be anxious about everything.

What is the first thing you do if you are worried, if it’s to post it to social media or try to muddle through it alone – there is a better way. Jesus promises to bear our anxieties and worries. He alone is all sufficient. We are told to cast our cares on Him, but just like casting a line for fishing – looking to Jesus and aiming for Him to cast our cares takes practice. Learning to lean on Jesus first means unlearning old ways of dealing with worry and practicing new ways. You aren’t the only one facing uncertainty, feeling anxious and worrying; everyone faces giants, suffering is universal, you are not alone. What we face here is temporary, though it may not seem like it at times, but in the end God will restore what is broken.

Realize that you are not alone, lean first on the Word of God, the promises of Jesus and then come together with others to support each other. Lean on Jesus, cast your cares on Him, pray with and for others, don’t let the information overload of the world drown out the Gospel message.

“Satan loves to fish in the troubled waters of a discontented heart.” – Thomas Watson

“He who is swollen with self-excellency and self-sufficiency—is not fit for Christ. He is full already. If the hand is full of pebbles—it cannot receive gold. The glass is first emptied, before you pour in wine. God first empties a man of himself, before he pours in the precious wine of his grace. None but the poor in spirit are within Christ’s commission. ‘The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; he has sent me to bind up the broken-hearted’ (Isaiah 61:1), that is, such as are broken in the sense of their unworthiness”. – Thomas Watson

{I Peter 5:5….God has had it with the proud, But takes delight in just plain people. 6-7 So be content with who you are, and don’t put on airs. God’s strong hand is on you; he’ll promote you at the right time. Live carefree before God; he is most careful with you. 8-11 Keep a cool head. Stay alert. The Devil is poised to pounce, and would like nothing better than to catch you napping. Keep your guard up. You’re not the only ones plunged into these hard times. It’s the same with Christians all over the world. So keep a firm grip on the faith. The suffering won’t last forever. It won’t be long before this generous God who has great plans for us in Christ—eternal and glorious plans they are!—will have you put together and on your feet for good. He gets the last word; yes, he does.}

{Philippians 4: Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.}

{Psalm 34:4 God met me more than halfway, he freed me from my anxious fears.}

Dinners this week (starting today) – chili and cornbread, stuffed green peppers with salad, tacos with ba’corn, brown gravy hamburger patties with fried potatoes and leeks , bringhe with naan, chicken, sausage and shrimp jambalaya with brown rice, out/grill.

Bringhe

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon curry powder
2 medium chicken leg quarters, meat removed and cut into bite-sized pieces
½ pound tiger prawns, peeled and deveined
½ pound cubed fully cooked ham
2 bay leaves
1 pinch salt and pepper to taste
1 (16 ounce) can coconut milk
1 cup uncooked glutinous white rice

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat; cook and stir the onion and garlic in the hot oil until translucent, 5 to 7 minutes. Season with the curry powder and stir to evenly coat. Add the chicken and stir. Cover the skillet and cook for 2 minutes. Stir the prawns into the mixture and cook another 2 minutes. Add the ham and bay leaves; season with salt and pepper and mix thoroughly. Again cover the skillet and cook another 2 minutes. Pour the coconut milk into the skillet. Add the rice and stir. Reduce heat to low and cover; cook, stirring occasionally, until the rice is tender, about 30 minutes. Serve hot.

Sunday

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I went to church and it was a pleasant 75 degrees with a slight breeze outside. I know that eventually we will have to move back indoors, but as long as the weather is nice – why not go outside? I had the walker with me just to get up from the bench, I don’t need it to walk.

From church – A little help for my friends

Loneliness – don’t find solutions to problems outside the gospel, those can cause more harm than good.

We had an epidemic of loneliness before the pandemic, it’s a human problem. God looked at everything He made each day and it was always good, until He looked at Adam and saw his loneliness. When He made Eve He now said that everything was ‘Very good,’ When He made us, He wired us to be connected; are there times when we need to be alone and disconnected? Yes, but there is a difference between being alone and being lonely.

What does the Bible say about loneliness? That God is trustworthy in this – He will never take His hand from you, never abandon you, He is with you in every circumstance. People can do nothing to separate you from the love of God and in that love is the unbreakable connection to Him. Through this experience of the presence of God in us we can provide His presence to others. The despair of loneliness can isolate us just when we need others the most. Part of loving others is to be there for them so that they aren’t lonely, in doing this we show them the love of God and show them that He will never forsake them, never leave them lonely.

Genesis 2:18
Then the Lord God said, “It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper fit for him.”

Hebrews 13: 1-4 Stay on good terms with each other, held together by love. Be ready with a meal or a bed when it’s needed. Why, some have extended hospitality to angels without ever knowing it! Regard prisoners as if you were in prison with them. Look on victims of abuse as if what happened to them had happened to you…5-6 Don’t be obsessed with getting more material things. Be relaxed with what you have. Since God assured us, “I’ll never let you down, never walk off and leave you,” we can boldly quote,

God is there, ready to help;
I’m fearless no matter what.
Who or what can get to me?

Psalm 143:7-10
Hurry with your answer, God! I’m nearly at the end of my rope… If you wake me each morning with the sound of your loving voice, I’ll go to sleep each night trusting in you. Point out the road I must travel; I’m all ears, all eyes before you. Save me from my enemies, God— you’re my only hope! Teach me how to live to please you, because you’re my God. Lead me by your blessed Spirit into cleared and level pastureland.

We sat around the house reading, I went by the library to get some books and I went grocery shopping with the girls. I made spinach enchiladas for dinner, they were so good.

The girls watched Jack so James and I could go out, we were going to Green Russell, but they are closed on Sundays now. So, Phil’s is was.

Dinners starting tomorrow –  blackened catfish with mac and cheese and salad, grilled chicken pitas with brown rice, hummus, onions, tomatoes, feta cheese and cucumber salad, keema aloo with naan, ham steak with baby brussel sprouts and pasta salad, brats with sauerkraut and roasted squash, out

Keema Aloo

2 tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 sweet onion
2 tablespoons Water
2 pounds Beef, ground, lean, raw
4 cloves Garlic, raw
2 tablespoons Ginger root, raw
1 Pepper, serrano, raw
2 teaspoons Cilantro, raw
1 tablespoon Coriander Seed
1 ½ teaspoons Salt, table
1 ½ teaspoons cumin, ground
1 teaspoon Spices, pepper, red or cayenne
1 teaspoon Spices, turmeric, ground
1 (28 ounce) can Ready Cut Tomatoes in Juice
3 each potatoes, raw
1 cup Peas, green, frozen, unprepared
1 teaspoon garam masala

Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook and stir onion in the hot oil until soft and beginning to brown, about 12 minutes. If browned bits of onion are stuck to the bottom of the pan, stir water into onion and stir to loosen the browned bits.

Mix ground beef, garlic, ginger, serrano chile, and cilantro into pan; cook and stir until beef is browned and crumbly, 10 to 15 minutes. Reduce heat to medium-low. Stir coriander, salt, cumin, cayenne pepper, and turmeric into the beef; cook and stir until flavors blend, about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes and potatoes, cover pot, and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 15 minutes.

Mix green peas into dish and cook until sauce has slightly thickened and flavors have blended, 10 to 15 minutes. Sprinkle garam masala over the dish, cover, and let stand for 5 minutes before serving.

 

Tuesday, ACC, park day, kayaking, last drink, weekend

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Tuesday was my pre-op appointment at the doc, going over surgery instructions and do’s and don’ts. Then I went downstairs to get some pain relief.

A friend wanted Grace to make an octopus tattoo so she made this.

Wednesday was park day and people showed up (and they had teens.) Turns out the Mom had been in Police explorers when she was a teen, so Hannah liked her right away.

Thursday Grace and I went kayaking in Georgetown. We made it to the other lake when a huge gust of wind made us get out, we should have just waited 10 minutes, but instead we packed up. Since we were closer to Frisco than home….Pure Kitchen it was.

Jack found a new favorite place to sit.

We stuck close to home for a last drink, first time at the Tavern in Littleton.

Friday Grace had her advisory and orientation for ACC and picked classes (Advisory, English, Algebra and Mythology.) Then we went to River Watch to drop papers and get a new buret, then to Sherry’s Soda Shoppe for ice cream and malts.

I got a new headband and bracelets.

Jack tripped over his own two feets and broke a nail, a trip to vet ended in a wrapped paw and medicine.

Saturday the girls left for Grand Junction, they made it there just fine. I had a busy day with a ton of chores so I can relax after surgery. Sunday James, Jack and I went kayaking at Chatfield, it was James’ first time in the kayak.

We grilled and chilled at home, took a nap, then took Biscuit to the vet (respiratory infection.) The girls should be home tomorrow just about the time we arrive at the hospital.

Dinners this week (not for me, obviously) – spaghetti with sausage and garlic bread, beef stroganoff with peas, pork chops and acorn squash, grilled cheese with tomato soup, vegetable soup, out, grill.

Pork and acorn squash

6 boneless pork loin chops (4 ounces each)
2 medium acorn squash, halved lengthwise, seeded and sliced
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 tablespoon orange juice
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest

Place pork chops in a 5-qt. slow cooker; add squash. In a small bowl, mix remaining ingredients; pour over squash. Cook, covered, on low 4-6 hours or until pork is tender.

Weekend

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Since we didn’t go to GJ we wouldn’t be headed home today and that means we wouldn’t get to eat in Frisco. But, I was determined – so we went to Frisco for lunch at Pure Kitchen and it was so good.

Later we sat on the porch and the dogs kept watch for bunnies.

From church – Reboot – the need to love and be loving.

The sustained pressures of trauma, stress and grieving make us withdraw into ourselves to conserve our energy and compassion; this can create a layer of hardness. Compassion fatigue happens when there is so much stress and you have given so much to others that there is nothing left. But, when we pull back from others we are hurting not only them, but ourselves too.

What can we do to keep from becoming hardened? Don’t compare yourself to others, fill up with Jesus and then pour Him out. A Christ centered person will look to build others up, they will remember what Christ has done for them and do the same for others. We need to restore/reset what is broken by sin, but remember to do it gently, with love. Either we need to be lending a hand or we need others to help us. We need to stow pride and ask for help when we need it and show compassion when others need it. Our world needs more compassion and love, not more discord and contempt.

Galatians 5:22-23 But what happens when we live God’s way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard—things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely.

23-24 Legalism is helpless in bringing this about; it only gets in the way. Among those who belong to Christ, everything connected with getting our own way and mindlessly responding to what everyone else calls necessities is killed off for good—crucified. 25-26 Since this is the kind of life we have chosen, the life of the Spirit, let us make sure that we do not just hold it as an idea in our heads or a sentiment in our hearts, but work out its implications in every detail of our lives. That means we will not compare ourselves with each other as if one of us were better and another worse. We have far more interesting things to do with our lives. Each of us is an original.

6: 1-3 Live creatively, friends. If someone falls into sin, forgivingly restore him, saving your critical comments for yourself. You might be needing forgiveness before the day’s out. Stoop down and reach out to those who are oppressed. Share their burdens, and so complete Christ’s law. If you think you are too good for that, you are badly deceived.

We had to run by the auto parts store to get a new light for the van’s headlight, Jack loves the floor in there.

And Englewood Grand to finish out the weekend.

Tips – try to use a crock pot or instant pot for days when it’s really hot outside and you don’t want to heat up the house with the oven (or grill outside.) You can always make twice as much and put a dinner in the freezer for later.

Dinners this week (starting today) – grilling stuff, chicken piccata with risotto and asparagus, lima beans over brown rice with sausage, chicken quesadillas with spanish rice, dijon pork, apples and cabbage with spinach salad, beef vindaloo with mashed potatoes and carrot slaw, out/leftovers.
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Beef vindaloo

1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
1/4 cup garlic paste
2 tablespoons ginger paste
2 tablespoons plain yogurt
2 tablespoons salt
1 tablespoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon ground red pepper
2 pounds boneless beef chuck, cut into 1-inch cubes
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 onion, chopped
4 roma (plum) tomatoes, chopped
1 cup water
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro (optional)

Whisk the vinegar, garlic paste, ginger paste, yogurt, salt, black pepper, and red pepper together in a mixing bowl. Mix in the beef cubes until evenly coated. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap, and marinate in the refrigerator overnight (or at least 30 minutes). Heat the vegetable oil in a large pot over medium heat. Cook and stir the onions in the hot oil until they soften, turn translucent, and begin turning golden brown, about 10 minutes. Add the beef cubes, and cook, stirring frequently until the meat is no longer pink on the outside, about 10 minutes more. Stir in the tomatoes and cook for 5 minutes. Pour in the water, and bring to a simmer. Cover and reduce heat to medium-low; cook until the beef is tender, about 40 minutes. Sprinkle with cilantro to serve.
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Dijon Pork with Apples and Cabbage (sorry the amounts are weird, it’s for 4 people)

3/8 head green or red cabbage, cored and cut into 1/2-inch-thick wedges
1-1/4 large apples – cored and sliced into thin wedges
3 tablespoons and 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil divided
1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon black pepper, divided
1-1/4 (16 ounce) pork tenderloins
2 teaspoons coarse-grain Dijon-style mustard
1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
1-1/2 teaspoons honey
3/4 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
2 teaspoons chopped fresh parsley (optional)

(Follow directions below or throw everything in the crockpot on low for 5-6 hours.)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Place 1 rack in center position and another 4 inches from broiler. Spray a rimmed sheet pan with cooking spray. Toss together cabbage and apples with 3 tablespoons oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper on prepared sheet pan and arrange in an even layer. Pat pork dry and season with remaining teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Whisk together remaining 2 tablespoons oil with mustard, vinegar, honey, and thyme in a small bowl. Spread over all sides of pork and set pork on top of cabbage and apples. Roast on center rack until an instant-read thermometer inserted into center of thickest part of each tenderloin registers 130 degrees F, about 25 minutes.

Remove pan from oven and turn oven to broil. When broiler is hot, put pan on top rack and broil until pork has a golden-brown crust, thermometer registers 145 degrees F, and cabbage and apples have a light char, about 5 minutes. Cover pan loosely with foil and let pork rest 10 minutes before slicing. Serve pork warm with cabbage and apples, sprinkled with parsley (if using).

July Fourth weekend

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Image may contain: stripes and sky, text that says 'Happy 4th of July!'

We started our day by going to the Paris street market, they had the booths spread out so it looked like there were more tents. Lots of cool junk to look at.

Then we dropped by Connections church to play a round of putt-putt. (We had Malia with us.) Jack went nuts when he saw the golf balls and twice he got close enough to grab at the ball and move it and once he had my golf ball in his mouth and I had to pry it out. We ended up with a 4 way tie (21) and James had 28.

James grilled a late lunch, we ate, I read, Grace chalked.

Then we put in an appearance at the neighborhood block party, I went and met my neighbor 2 doors down and then said I needed to leave because I’m having surgery and there were too many people there. The HR fireworks were canceled since we had 2 fires in the past week, but that didn’t stop the block party from popping off fireworks until 11pm. I told people to just look at pics of past fireworks – but it seems no one did.

Image may contain: fireworks and night

Image may contain: fireworks and night

Image may contain: fireworks, night and outdoor

Image may contain: fireworks and night

Sunday I had a surprise at church, they made some permanent shade instead of having to put up and take down the tents each week. I think it’s a good improvement and gives some much needed shade for the back area.

From church – Reboot: trust

Where do we place our trust in difficult times is the wrong question – Who do we place our trust in and who are we relying on to get through difficult times?

Our natural tendency is to trust in what we can see. God will never ask you to pretend like everything is okay when it’s not. When things are not okay we need to be reminded of who we put our trust in and we need to exercise the spiritual habit of trusting God. Control what you can and let God handle the rest. Remember that things are stronger when they are broken – growth often happens under pressure.

Fear can make us less loving, it steals the ability to make good choices. Fear and anxiety spread from person to person faster than any virus, the antidote to fear is trust.
Are you weary and burdened? We see problems as an absence of God, but God is drawn to weary, broken, burdened people. Remember that a yoke seems heavy, but it doesn’t mean you’re on your own. Jesus is paired with you and with Him the yoke is easy, the load is shared.

Psalm 20 1-4 God answer you on the day you crash, The name God-of-Jacob put you out of harm’s reach, Send reinforcements from Holy Hill, Dispatch from Zion fresh supplies, Exclaim over your offerings, Celebrate your sacrifices, Give you what your heart desires, Accomplish your plans. 5 When you win, we plan to raise the roof and lead the parade with our banners. May all your wishes come true! 6 That clinches it—help’s coming, an answer’s on the way, everything’s going to work out. 7-8 See those people polishing their chariots, and those others grooming their horses? But we’re making garlands for God our God. The chariots will rust, those horses pull up lame—and we’ll be on our feet, standing tall.

2 Timothy 1:7 For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.

Matthew 11:28-30 “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”

I went grocery shopping after church and had just enough time to sit for a bit before we headed out to the pet store and Stanley. Marley is staying with us for a week, he’s a good dog.

Jack is not used to sharing his bed though.

We had a nice shady spot to eat lunch and listen to David play with his other band (David Lawrence and the Spoonful.)

Then it was back home so James and Joel could go to the gun range. I read and gathered up my stuff I’m giving away at the park (school stuff, games, books, toys) and listened to my Nina Simone station. We had leftovers for dinner, sat on the porch for a bit and watched an episode of Godless.

Tips – make a grocery list (I love lists!) I make mine according to the layout of my King Soopers – Heaven help them if they ever remodel again. Clean out your fridge/pantry BEFORE you shop for the week (throw out leftovers, move things around, get rid of trash) this way when you get home you can quickly put away groceries. SHOP WITHOUT CHILDREN (if you can, call it Mommy time and have your husband watch the kids, it’s cheaper that way.)

Dinners this week – leftovers, tacos and elote corn, butternut squash lentil curry with brown rice, fettuccine alfredo with ham and peas on the side, BBQ pork sliders with coleslaw, pizza, out/grill

Butternut squash lentil curry

2 cups brown lentils
8 cups water
½ teaspoon turmeric
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 large onion, diced
2 tomatoes cored and chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 ½ tablespoons curry powder, or to taste
2 teaspoons ground cumin
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
¼ teaspoon ground cloves
2 cups peeled, cubed (1-inch), seeded butternut squash
2 each potatoes, unpeeled and chopped
2 carrots, peeled and diced
2 cups packed fresh spinach, chopped
1 Granny Smith apple, unpeeled, cored and diced

(follow below for stove directions, otherwise soak lentils overnight and throw everything into a crockpot for 4-6 hours on low.)

Place the brown lentils in a pan with the water and turmeric. Cook over medium-low heat until tender, about 45 minutes. Drain, reserving 2 1/2 cups of the cooking liquid.

Meanwhile, heat the canola oil in a large, deep pot over medium heat. Stir in the onion, and cook until tender and transparent, about 5 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and garlic; cook 5 minutes more, stirring occasionally. Mix in the curry powder, cumin, salt, pepper, and cloves. Add the cooked lentils, reserved cooking liquid, squash, potatoes, and carrots. Cover, and cook over medium-low heat until the vegetables are tender, 35 to 45 minutes. Stir in the spinach and apple. Cook until the squash can be easily pierced with a fork, about 15 minutes more. Adjust seasonings to taste. Serve over rice.

Weekend

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I decided that today (Saturday) was a good day to go to Urgent care. I think my kidney is infected again (I was right) and I’d like some pain relief so my heart can have a break. The nurse was about to give up on her first try for an IV, but I told her to fish around and shove that needle deeper and it worked. One try for an IV, gold star for her!

I refused a scan (because I just had one on the 15th) and got my pain meds and an antibiotic. 2.5 hours later I was having brunch with James at The Lazy Dog. Jack loves the hamburgers there, but he never eats the rice and veggies (unless you hand feed him, but even then he gets to a point where he won’t eat them and just spits them out.)

James grilled for dinner, I had a nap and we sat on the porch for a bit.

Sunday I went to church, then we went to Stanley to hear LAPOMPE live! It was awesome, see them here and here and here. (I have short FB live recordings because my phone was dying.)

From church – Rebooting relationships

Social distancing has reminded us that we need other people in our lives and we need good, healthy relationships. Even introverts need people, they may have a smaller circle, but it’s still there. Why did God design us to need people? Because in our relationships we can glorify God, uplift others and shine as a light for the lost.
Heart of the Gospel – your relationship with Jesus has changed your relationship with God. We can’t have healthy relationships with others if we don’t have a good relationship with our Creator.
Healthy – urge each other to do good, urge each other to love others, encourage each other.
We need people who will draw us closer to God (not push us away), help us to hold on to the hope we profess (not speak discouraging words) and encourage us in everything we do (not hold us back and keep us from running forward.)
When life wears you down, you need people who will pick you up, not hold you back.

Hebrew 10:19-21 So, friends, we can now—without hesitation—walk right up to God, into “the Holy Place.” Jesus has cleared the way by the blood of his sacrifice, acting as our priest before God. The “curtain” into God’s presence is his body. 22-25 So let’s do it—full of belief, confident that we’re presentable inside and out. Let’s keep a firm grip on the promises that keep us going. He always keeps his word. Let’s see how inventive we can be in encouraging love and helping out, not avoiding worshiping together as some do but spurring each other on, especially as we see the big Day approaching.

I took a nap (that is becoming a daily occurence) and we went to River run to check on the water level – perfect for tubing.

Dinners starting tomorrow – chicken apple berry spinach couscous bowl, chicken creole over brown rice, pecan coconut tilapia with roasted squash, eat out, three cheese and ham/spinach quiche, turkey veggie meatloaf cups with salad, cook out.

Turkey veggie meatloaf cups

2 cups coarsely chopped zucchini
1 ½ cups coarsely chopped onions
1 red bell pepper, coarsely chopped
1 pound extra lean ground turkey
½ cup uncooked couscous
1 egg
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
½ cup barbecue sauce, or as needed

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Spray 20 muffin cups with cooking spray.

Place zucchini, onions, and red bell pepper into a food processor, and pulse several times until finely chopped but not liquefied. Place the vegetables into a bowl, and mix in ground turkey, couscous, egg, Worcestershire sauce, and Dijon mustard until thoroughly combined. Fill each prepared muffin cup about 3/4 full. Top each cup with about 1 teaspoon of barbecue sauce.

Bake in the preheated oven until juices run clear, about 25 minutes. Internal temperature of a muffin measured by an instant-read meat thermometer should be at least 160 F. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.