Wednesday, September 30, 2015


Psalm 45: 13
" All glorious is the princess within her chamber; her gown is interwoven with gold. "

I have princesses on my mind. First, I have five beautiful girls; my very own princesses. Second, I have a precious two year old that's going to be three soon and she's all about the princesses (like her sisters before her). So here we go again, another princess birthday party. At this point, I like to consider myself an expert. I've done them all from Cinderella to Anna & Elsa (not Snow White, that movie scared me!).  This year, I'm going back to Belle. We were fortunate to have a trip to Disney World earlier this year (Christmas present from my parents, yay!), and we met Belle at a character breakfast. We also saw her recently at a local craft fair, she said I could invite her to a party (if I made a donation). So here we go again, Beauty and the Beast.

Here's my little princess meeting her favorite princess, Elsa, in Disney World.
It's hard to believe that she'll be 3 in just a couple of months! 

Fiesta inspirada en la princesa Bella:
I found this adorable birthday party on Pinterest (my fave idea place!)
It's from the Hostess with the Mostess blog. Love!!

Here's the princess I met at the craft fair a couple of weeks ago. She's beautiful!

This is Belle from Ever After Event.
She was so nice and sweet, any little girl would be lucky to have her attend a party.
Hopefully she can come to ours.

Remember, you are a daughter (or son) of the one true King! That makes you a princess (prince), too.
I pray you have a wonderful Wednesday, Your Royal Highness!!

Monday, September 28, 2015

Fancy Chicken

Psalm 10: 3
" The Lord does not let the righteous go hungry, but he thwarts the cravings of the wicked. "

I'm already hungry for dinner, and I have a craving for chicken...uh oh! I try to plan a menu for the week and then make my grocery list. Sometimes, I see a sale that I simply can't miss, and the menu changes. Right now I'm rethinking my whole weekly menu.  I get stuck in a rut and make the same things over and over. I need to get some new ideas for dinners; or maybe just some old ones. I was thinking of a recipe that I started to make back in 1988. I was working at a ladies clothing store and my manager shared this delicious chicken recipe with me. I still love it. I scribbled it down quickly while we were on the phone and that's the recipe I still follow to this day.

Here it is...

Fancy Chicken


1 pkg of skinless boneless chicken breasts
Salt and pepper
swiss cheese slices
1 can of cream of mushroom soup (or cream of chicken)
1 pkg of herb flavored croutons
white wine (I prefer a dry white)
1 stick of butter, melted


Preheat oven to 350*
Place chicken breast in a 9x13 baking dish (I cut the chicken into strips for my big family). Season with salt and pepper.
Top each piece of chicken with a slice of cheese.
In a separate bowl mix the soup with 1 soup can full of wine until blended. Pour soup mixture on chicken.
Evenly distribute croutons around baking dish.
Pour melted butter evenly over everything.
Bake in 350* oven for 45-60 minutes, until done.

I have no idea where this recipe came from (other than my manager), but I have been making it this way for nearly 30 years, and it's delicious. I would serve this chicken with some fresh green beans and a salad for a fancy meal.  Enjoy!

I pray you have a fun, fancy Monday!

Friday, September 25, 2015

One bad apple...

Isaiah 65: 8 (MSG)
" God's Message:  'But just as one bad apple doesn't ruin the whole bushel, there are still plenty of good apples left. So I'll preserve those in Israel who obey me. I won't destroy the whole nation.'  "

This translation is different because it refers to apples instead of grapes, but you get the idea. God doesn't get rid of all of us because of a few bad apples or grapes, right? And the same thing can be said of a few bad days or a few bad decisions. God will not abandon us. Thank you, Lord! I've had plenty of days when I need a do-over. Thank you for a new morning. Another chance to bear good fruit (whichever fruit you may want me to be!).  Amen.

My cell phone needs a do-over. It finally died yesterday. So after I finish writing this morning I will be reconnecting my old Samsung. Here's a pic. (wa wa waa...)

OMG! I can't believe I still had this phone, but thank goodness.

I have to use this phone, because we hadn't budgeted for a new phone for me right now. So while I'm using this fine Samsung product (circa 2009), I'd love some input into what kind of new cell phone you all would recommend. I'm considering an Apple phone like this.

This is a pic of the new i phone 6.
or.... a Samsung Galaxy?

What works best for you? I'd love your input. Please comment below and let me know what you love or don't love so much about your smart phone. Thanks for your help!

I pray your weekend is fruitful!

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Fall in love

John 3: 16
" For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. "

 This verse reminds me of football!! You can't watch a game without someone in the crowd holding up a sign with this Bible verse on it. Why do they do it? Well, it sums up the gospel beautifully. Jesus died so we might live. God loves us more than we can even imagine. So today, I pray that if you haven't asked Jesus to come into your heart, that you would take a moment and say a simple prayer. It doesn't have to sound "churchy", it just has to be sincere. Tell him you need him, confess your sinful life and turn away from it and towards him. Believe that you are forgiven and that you are marked forever as his beloved child. That's it. Amen.

So how's your fall going? So far, mine's been great! Yesterday, I took the children to an apple orchard. We went on a hayride and picked our own apples. So fun! If you have an opportunity to do this, I highly recommend it. We had beautiful weather for the first day of fall, a cool morning and afternoon temps near 80*.  I love to be outside with the children during these last few weeks of warmer weather. Before you know it we'll be all bundled up again.  Here a couple of pics from yesterday's adventure.

Hayride to the apple orchard.  We went to Lohr's Orchard. In a few weeks, we'll go back and pick some pumpkins.
(I couldn't get everyone looking in the same direction)

I love this picture! Isn't she the most adorable apple picker ever? 

Today, I pray that you fall in love with the one who created you, loves you, 
and holds you forever in the palm his hand. Amen!

Wednesday, September 23, 2015


Song of Solomon 2: 5
" Strengthen me with raisins, refresh me with apples, for I am faint with love. "

Well, we're out of raisins, but by the end of the day, we should be stocked with apples. I'm taking the children to an apple orchard today.  I have told you how blessed we are to live so close to farm country, and this is precisely the reason why. I love to purchase fresh produce straight from the source. Not only will the apples be straight from the source, but right off the tree. The farm/orchard I have chosen, allows you pick your own apples. I can't wait!  I thought I'd share an easy applesauce recipe today in honor of our day at the orchard.

One of my favorite artist/authors Susan Branch!

Here is Susan Branch's recipe for applesauce that I have used for years from her book Heart of the Home. It's so simple and so good!

(makes 4 cups)

You'll need:
4 med. tart apples, peeled, cored and quartered
1 c. of water
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. nutmeg
1 Tbsp. butter
3/4 c. chopped walnuts (opt.)
1/2 c. raisins, golden kind (opt.)
1/3 c. coconut (opt.)

Put the apples and water in a pot and heat over medium heat until boiling.  Reduce to simmer and stir occasionally for 5 to 10 minutes until apples are tender.  Add all the other ingredients and heat through until raisins are plumped.  

I hope you give this recipe a try and on this first day of  Fall 2015, you begin to enjoy all that this new season has to offer. Susan Branch has been inspiring me since the 1980's in my homemaking and in my cooking. 
She has many inspirational books for holiday and home. (Click on the link and take a look!)

I pray this new season brings you abundance and joy!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

A leap of faith

Isaiah 40: 31
" but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. "

I'm pretty sure I've shared this verse before, but it's a good one!  I couldn't get it out of my head this morning as I am thinking about the literally huge leap (13,500 ft to be exact) of faith my BIL, Tim, is making in a few weeks.  I have shared before that Tim was diagnosed with ALS last year. Let me tell you, what a shocker! I have been so blessed by the extraordinary, faithful way Tim and his family have taken on this burden. They have started a non-profit organization, Ten Mile Miracle, dedicated to helping those stricken with ALS in the Delmarva area. How many of us can say they have done that? Last year, just months after his diagnosis Tim walked 10 miles from Dewey Beach to Bethany Beach to raise awareness for ALS and this year, well... he's jumping out of an airplane! For someone afraid of heights this is certainly an extraordinary leap. But Tim doesn't take any credit for this, he gives all the glory to God! So today, I'm asking for prayer. I pray that Ten Mile Miracle raises money and awareness for ALS, I pray for a beautiful fall day on October 10th, and I pray for courage and protection for my crazy BIL as he takes this leap of faith. Love you Tim!

Please take a moment and read this article " Delmarva Man Plans 13,500-Foot Skydive to Raise ALS Funds and Awareness ", and of course click on any of the above links and make a donation.

Tim Hill walked 10 miles to raise hope and funds for fellow ALS patients on Delmarva.
Tim (crazy BIL) Hill

I pray you take a leap of faith today, even a small one, that leads you closer to God.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Hot Mess!

Proverbs 25: 22
" In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head, and the Lord will reward you. "

I was confused by this verse, because in the preceding verses it tells of giving food and drink to your enemies. In other words, showing them kindness. But when I investigated, I understood that we are told to do this kind act and that the coals on the heads of our enemies (clearly a bad thing!) will be their guilt, shame or remorse. Clearly your enemies do not get off scot-free here. I love it. Not because I want others to suffer, but if someone is truly your enemy, their punishment kind of takes care of itself.  I'm not advocating revenge. I'm advocating taking the high road and hopefully leading someone to repentance. Sometimes kindness is so hard, but we are never more Christlike when we practice it, even in times of hardship and adversity.

Speaking of hot coals...forgive me if I've mislead you to think that I have a perfect life.  I do not. Sometimes, I'm just a hot mess (my SIL and I are going to write a book, you just wouldn't believe it)! The purpose of this blog is not to sound preachy or to tell you to "do what I do".  I certainly hope you try what I try. I want to share with you some of the wisdom and some of the fun things I've picked up over these last (nearly) 50 years of my life. I pray that you come away with something fun and something uplifting and positive. Thank you for being so kind, and reading my blog. I love you all!!

So, last week, I got my new Ipsy glam bag! (click on the link to investigate). What a treat. I really like the neutral, natural eyeshadow and lip crayon. I love being able to sample products and new colors without spending a fortune. I can then invest in the products I truly love. Here's a pic of me all "glammed" up!

Let me tell you, I hate taking selfies. It's only by God's grace that I have the courage to post pictures of myself.
But, just as I am Lord, this is me!
I pray you have a wonderful week!

Thursday, September 17, 2015

I don't wanna!

Jonah 1: 2
" Go to the great city of Nineveh and preach against it, because its wickedness has come up before me. "

Not only did Jonah not want to go to Nineveh, he started off on a journey to one of the most remote places he could think of, so he wouldn't be anywhere near Nineveh. But we all know what happened to him on his journey to Tarshish.  He was swallowed by a big fish! And, he ended up going to Nineveh anyway. There's a definite lesson here for what God tells you to do! So, on the days when you just want to sleep in instead of getting up for church, or you're running late for Bible study, so why go? Or, you just don't wanna do anything, do it anyway. Getting up on some of my worst Sunday mornings and going to church anyway, or being a few minutes (or later) to Bible study, are some of the best "doing it anyway" moments. And let's not limit this to church. God has called you to be a sister/brother, a mother/father, a daughter/son, a granddaughter/grandson, a wife/husband, a friend, a volunteer, a teacher, etc... do it anyway. Be the best of what God calls you to be everyday, anyway!

I really "wanna" decorate for fall, but I haven't yet. I certainly am baking for fall (I refuse to step on a scale again until next spring!), but literally just got out some hand towels and a table runner...that is all. I realize fall hasn't officially begun, so I'm certainly not late, but my home doesn't reflect what I would like it to right now. I'm frustrated and finding motivation difficult.  What I need is a new Yankee Candle and a trip to my local farm stand. Some sights and smells to get me started.  Here are some beautiful fall rooms to hopefully motivate you to decorate for the changing seasons...enjoy!

FALL HOME TOUR-bringing the natural element of fall inside. Lots of easy inspiration

FALL HOME TOUR-bringing the natural element of fall inside. Lots of easy inspiration

FALL HOME TOUR-bringing the natural element of fall inside. Lots of easy inspiration
All of the above images are from one of my favorite blogs - Stone Gable.
I find inspiration from this blog in so many ways. I encourage you to click the link above and tour this beautiful home.
(and the rest of the blog, too!)

I pray today that you listen for the voice of God, and obey.
( I don't want you to end up in the belly of a fish!)

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

The muffin man

Exodus 16: 31
" The people of Israel called the bread manna. It was white like coriander seed and tasted like wafers made with honey. "

The Israelites complained to Moses that they were starving and that Moses brought them away from Egypt, where they could eat all they wanted (I'm pretty sure they were slaves!!),  just to starve out in the desert. Boy does that resonate with me. Praying to be taken out of one situation, just to lose sight of all that God has done in my life and complain about the situation I'm currently in. I am never satisfied it seems. Lord, forgive me for my grumbling, worrying  and complaining. Without you, I have nothing. With you, I have everything I need and more. Amen.

I am a carbohydrate junkie! Manna from heaven: bring it on!! Yesterday, I baked two kinds of muffins and today, I'm baking a third batch. This time of year there is nothing better than pumpkin and a couple of weeks ago I found the easiest pumpkin muffin recipe ever. It's a two ingredient recipe and it works. I couldn't find the exact recipe my friend shared on facebook, but 2 ingredients, who needs a recipe?? So here you go some simple instructions for you and you'll never need to look at it again.

2 Ingredient Pumpkin Muffins

You'll need.

1 box of spice cake mix
1 15-16oz can of pumpkin puree (not pumpkin pie filling)

Preheat oven to 350*
Combine both ingredients in a mixing bowl. Pour into muffin tin with liners.
Bake for 15-18 minutes or fork comes out clean. Done!!!

 I pray your day is fun and your belly is full!

Monday, September 14, 2015

Sunflower, good morning!

Psalm 113: 3
" From the rising of the sun to the place where it sets, the name of the Lord is to be praised. "

Lord, thank you for a beautiful fall-like morning. The temperatures have gone down into the 50's at night, and the mornings have a little nip in the air. I have to admit summer is my favorite season, but fall is a close second. I love that the temperatures are still plenty warm during the day (most days) and I love the beautiful fall foliage, pumpkins, and crisp apples. Since this has been the first temperature drop of the season the leaves have only just begun to change, but the sunflowers in our area are in full bloom. We live so close to farm country that it takes only a nice drive on a sunny afternoon to locate a field of these beauties in bloom. We have a family tradition of snapping a few pics of the family at these fields of sunshine. I encourage you to take some fun family photos at a traditional spot each year to see how the years are growing your little ones (and aging my husband and I!). Here are a few pics from over the years.





Well, there you go. Here's my family (part of them) over the last 4 years. My 14 yr old is now taller than I am (I think he was last year, too!). Can you believe how big my baby has gotten? I can't wait to see what changes next year will bring, but also enjoy looking back to see how everyone has grown. So precious!

I pray you have a great start to your week!

Friday, September 11, 2015


John 15: 13
" Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one's life for one's friends. "

Exactly 14 years ago to this very day, I was nursing my newborn son and trying to watch my morning shows when the unthinkable happened. Our world changed that beautiful September morning. Being married to a police officer made that unthinkable day, even more unthinkable. There were mandatory 12 hour shifts and new procedures and processes to follow. But, what hasn't changed is the dedication and sacrifice our first responders made then and continue to make every day. Any ordinary beautiful morning could turn into the unthinkable for any of these families still today. I am forever grateful for my husband and for all of those who pledge to serve and protect us. Thank you, Lord, for all of those who pledge to lay down their lives for us and for all of those that have fallen. We remember today all of the innocent people that lost their lives 14 years ago, and we remember the bravery of those who fought and continue to fight for our freedom. Amen.

Here is my favorite guy. A little role reversal on Halloween 2 years ago.
He was in BIG trouble, I think he stole some candy!!
Image result for 9/11 remember images
(Image found on Google Images)
I pray you have a blessed weekend!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Back in black

1 John 1: 5
" This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all. "

Now that's putting a little light on the subject! In this verse darkness is sin. If we are truly following Christ then we are not to spend time in the darkness, and if we do, we are not practicing the truth. That doesn't mean we are to live a sinless life (impossible!), but we are always to seek the light: Christ. "Shine in my heart, Lord Jesus". ("I want to walk as a Child of the Light": Kathleen Thomerson- hymn).

Black is my color of choice for this football season. It's the only common color that my son's high school team and my hometown NFL team have in common. So, even though I'm supposed to wear purple on Friday to support my Sunday team, my son's games are Friday nights, so I have to sport some black and gold (pardon me, but eww!, Steelers' colors!!).  So black it is!  My thinking right now is what shoes (I know, I'm thinking shoes) should I wear once it starts to get a little chilly around here? Why, Chuck Taylor's of course! That's right, they never go out of style. And, I'm going black and low. I was also considering white, but I may as well paint a target on my shoes. My children will be stepping all over my feet for sure. I can't wait to get a pair. They will be perfect with shorts, jeans and even some of my more casual dresses.

Converse Chuck Taylor® Low Sneaker (Women)
Love 'em!
I found this pair at Nordstrom, but you can get them at most major department stores for about the same price.

I also found a pair of similar style sneakers at Target.

Women's Lenia Sneakers - Black 8
Women's Lenia Sneakers
These are less than half the price of the Converse shoes

Welcome back football season, I have missed you! Now I have a good excuse to have party food and yell at the TV!! Yay!!!

I pray your day is full of light, even on a day filled with clouds!

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Walking and jumping

Acts 3: 8
" He jumped to his feet and began to walk. Then he went with them into the temple courts, walking and jumping and praising God. "

This verse has never held such meaning for me until this past week.  Last Monday evening, my 2 year old started to complain about her knee hurting and refused to walk or dance because it hurt too much.  Fearing a break or a sprain when she showed no signs of improvement, we took her to a local express care facility the next afternoon.  By Wednesday afternoon, after a visit to her pediatrician, we were on our way to the ER, and a short time later being transported by ambulance to another ER where they were better equipped to treat pediatric patients. We were told that she may have septic arthritis and to prepare ourselves for surgery.  Believe me, there was a lot of prayer going on! My brave little girl had to endure more pain and discomfort than some adults could endure. There were many blood tests, IV's, monitors, and finally they aspirated her knee to test the fluid. Thankfully they determined that she wouldn't require surgery right away, if at all, but we were to stay in the hospital for a couple of days to determine what was going on. I'd love to tell you, they figured it out and everything is just fine now. Unfortunately, things aren't always as simple as we'd like them to be. We don't have a diagnosis yet. We were released from the hospital on Friday due to some more positive test results, but with follow-up visits scheduled with orthopedists, rheumatologists and her pediatrician.

What this experience has taught me, is that we just don't have control. Our worry and stress is because we can't get the answers or the outcome that we want, or need.  And that's where faith steps in.  Through my tears of frustration and fear for my baby, I had the knowledge that she was in God's hands. That God had control of the whole situation, and that whatever the outcome, He would be right there with me holding me, too. He heard every prayer, every plea. He saw every tear. I couldn't have made it through the last week without my God.

As of last evening, literally one week to the hour from the time my little girl couldn't walk, she was still unable to walk....
until 2 hours later!! Just like in the verse above, as quickly as the onset of this mysterious illness began, my baby walked and jumped and danced! Praise God! We still have doctor appointments and more than likely, therapy (and even test results pending), but, I am so relieved and full of hope. This morning she has not yet felt comfortable enough to walk, but I know with time and motivation (she's just like her mother!), she'll be walking, jumping and dancing again! God is good!!!

Here's my brave girl in the hospital last week. Even though she went through quite an ordeal physically, her attitude remained positive. She enjoyed her music, coloring, blocks and lots and lots of the Disney Channel!

I pray that your day is full jumping and leaping and praising God!

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Fave for fall

Romans 2: 11
" God does not play favorites. "  (GW)

Whew, I'm happy about that verse!  Thank you, Lord, that you count sin, as sin, as sin. and that you expect me to not do it. It's just that simple. You know that I am fallible (every day, Lord, every day!) and that I can't do it alone. You still love me enough to give me chance, after chance, after chance (not seven times, but seventy times seven times! Matt 18:22).  I am humble in your presence, Lord. Amen.

I play favorites (!). No, not with my children, but I do have favorite things. And the fun part about that, is I can change my mind. So here are some of my favorite things for fall!

1. A cute new burlap garden flag!

I found this one in Etsy- see link
2. A nice fall scent! 

This is one of my favorite fall scents from Yankee Candle- Autumn Wreath

3. A great fall throw pillow.
Gilded Pumpkin Palampore Pillow Cover
I love this pumpkin pillow. I found it on

4. A comfy and stylish new throw.

Threshold™ Herringbone Throw
I'm in love with this Herringbone Throw and it's only $19.99 right now on
5.  A festive fall wreath
20'' You Choose Burlap Wreath, Year Round Burlap Wreath, Fall Wreath, Burlap Fall Wreaths, Christmas Wreaths
I love burlap for this season. It's simple without shouting, "Fall!" (Even the letter is right!)
I found this wreath on Etsy- see link

 I hope I've inspired you to go through your linen closet, or up your attic stairs (or to go shopping!) and start refreshing your decor for the new season. I know I'm ready!

I pray you have a terrific Tuesday!