Day 499: Cherish The Love

20130522-222140.jpg

Can I just say that I love being positive and praying?

Cause I do… love it.

Yesterday I got back on track with my 30 Day Infusion and wrote the post Day 498: Newbie and I just used those thoughts all day long! Whenever I was tempted with something food-wise I thought, “I am a new person!” and when I could feel myself starting to obsess about food, I prayed, “God just bring me close to You today. I just want to focus on You.” It was just so nice to look at that leftover bite of chocolate covered granola bar and instead of saying “Don’t eat it! Don’t do it! Turn around!” I was able to, instead, say something positive to myself, “I AM NEW! YOU ARE NEW, JANUARY!” I actually feel GOOD about myself instead of crappy.

Anyway, on to today’s:

POSITIVITY: I am cherished.

He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased my freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave my sins. He has showered his kindness on me, along with all wisdom and understanding. Ephesians 1:7-8

How wonderful to feel so important that God purchased my freedom for me… with His own SON! That He showers his kindness on me! I just picture Him ever-so-gently holding my life in His all-powerful hands and smiling with contentment that I am His. WOW. I am cherished. And dang, ya know… I would have loved to really tap into that mindset earlier in my life. I can picture now the girls from high school that knew that they were cherished by God. So long I spent searching for some guy to cherish me (not denying that it’s not nice to have my husband cherish me now). But now I can remember that I am cherished now no matter what I do. that I’ll still be adored and fawned over by God because I am cherished by Him.

PRAYER: God, YOU are awesome. You are just everything that I need even when I don’t know that you are all that I need! You are the One True Love of my heart and I adore You. Thank you for buying my freedom from sin and sadness. Thank you for just cherishing me as a precious part of the existence You have created. Continue to pull my eyes toward you God. Call out to me when I take my gaze away from you and remind me of your Love of your Greatness and of your Power! I truly long only for You, God. I just want to have my days be a moment-by-moment interaction with You. Please, help me make that happen today. Thank you for cherishing me. Thank you for making me new. Thank you for making me royalty and for making me for more than just earthly junk. You are what I want! I love youuuuu! Amen!

And if you want to know where I came up with the title for this post, you can watch the video “Cherish the Love” from the 80s by Kool & The Gang if you want some laughs. It’s purty cheesy and it has nothing to do with this post other than it has the word “cherish” in the title of the song! Ha!

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s09LuDYX12g?rel=0&w=420&h=315]

Day 498: Newbie

Whoa. You know how you think, “Awwwww, it hasn’t been that long since I wrote” and then you actually have to add up the numbers and realize that it has been a full week since you wrote.

Oops.

In my defense, it has been a jam-packed week for me.

I was co-hosting a baby shower on Saturday morning and then my son’s birthday party on Saturday night. Then on Sunday afternoon I went to see Gatsby (which was so. flipping. good.) with a friend that will be gone all summer. Then I guess Monday was more of a recovery day than anything and then today was full of tornado warnings and my son’s actual birthday.

I found myself just wanting to go to sleep but at the same time I found myself just wanting to write.

And then I was all like, “Write? What am I gonna write about? I got nothing.”

And THEN I was all like, “Then, you need to write. You gotta write. You have to put the RIGHT stuff in your heart and mind.”

So, here I am… to write! My 30 Day Infusion got a little derailed, but hey… there’s no time like the present to start something up again, right?!?!? For my positivity, I think I need something to tell me what to be positive about for the day, so I’m going to refer to the scriptures from Day 460: Name Change.

POSITIVITY: I am new. I belong to Christ, and so I’ve become a new person. My old life is gone; my new life has begun! 2 Corinthians 5:17 And really there couldn’t have been a more perfect choice for today’s positivity. I am new. I am not the old January. I am new. Doesn’t mean that I’m perfect. that I’m sinless. that I’m untouchable. It just means that I am new and that my new life has begun.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus, You make everything new. You are the Beginning and the End. You are my Hope and my Future! As I embark upon today God, I am reminded of everything that you are to me. And right now I don’t care about food… I just want to stay close to You today. I just want to be reminded of my newness. of my new beginnings. of my hope and my future. I just want to go where You go and stay where You stay. Keep me close by your side today God. Keep my eyes focused on what You focus upon. You are so good to me. so merciful. so patient and kind. You are my God. Amen.

{The new leaves on a plant
that I almost killed! The new
leaves are almost more
beautiful than the old.}

20130522-075115.jpg

 

Day 491: Dream Come True

Day 2 of my 30 Day Infusion of positivity and prayer!

I’ll do the positivity first and then end with the prayer at the bottom…

POSITIVITY: Today I am reminded of yesterday’s positivity: I am made for MORE! More than just food. More than easy comfort. More than reliance upon something of this world.

I am made for royalty!

I am the daughter of The King! I am a princess! It’s like every girl’s dream come true!

But there are so many important things that I am called to do today as a princess of the Kingdom of God, and I’m not talking just laundry and dishes. Reaching out to those who are in need spiritually and physically. Checking on the welfare of The King’s people. Making appearances on His Behalf. Wearing a garment of praise.

What a blessing to have been accepted as one of God’s children!

See, I even have a crown! Haha!

20130515-080844.jpg

PRAYER: God- thank you for today. Thank you for being all that I need. Thank you for being my Healer and my Help, my Protector and my Savior.

Thank you for waking me up easily this morning so I could go walk. Thank you for the beach-like breeze that accompanied me. Thank you for the sweet moments with my sons and my husband. Thank you even for these few stolen moments to pray!

Today, I am grateful. I am hopeful. Yet still I ask that you keep me on track.

“Help me to be self-controlled. Let me show integrity, seriousness, and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose the gospel may not be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about me.” Titus 2:6-8

May every moment of today be a focus on You. May today bring me into a closer understanding of you and your grace and mercy and holiness.

Thank you Jesus. Thank you for my life but mostly thank you for my faith.

Amen.

{And just for kicks, I had to show you guys
a pic of my son wearing the crown…
cause it’s HYSTERICAL!}

20130515-082523.jpg

Day 490: Positivity And Prayers

20130514-085001.jpg

I realized over this past weekend that I have been more down on myself than encouraging. We are our worst critics, right?

Well, after reading a few more chapters of Made To Crave, I realized two things that have been severely lacking in my journey:

Prayers.
Positivity.

See- even there I could say it like this:

Well, after reading a few more chapters of Made To Crave, I realized two things that have been severely lacking in my journey I want to incorporate more into my journey:

Prayers!
Positivity!

See, even that little turn of words was a big deal!

So, I’m going on a 30-day “infusion”! (see? Instead of a 30-day cleanse, I’m focusing on the positive and calling it an infusion!) I’m going to be infusing my life with prayer and positivity and you guys get to come along with me!

Today, I’m going to be borrowing a sentence from Lysa’s book as my “positive” phrase:

I am made for more!

Whenever I am tempted by something less than what He would have for me, I am going to remind myself, “I am made for something MORE!”

And prayers. Gonna start praying more. And since I’m a stay at home mom, my life seems to revolve around the kitchen, so today if I am tempted for some non-covenant food then I am going to leave the kitchen and then pray when the food-distraction is out of sight! Refocus on Him and then get back to business.

I’m so excited about this new turn. I hope that today you too can put on a garment of praise and hope and life with me!

Here is my prayer this afternoon:

Make me self-controlled and alert. My enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Help me resist him and stand firm in the faith. 1 Peter 5:8-9

20130514-123806.jpg

Recipe: Mexican Potato Casserole

20130506-213415.jpg

Gotta love those recipes that are born from “What am I going to cook for dinner tonight” and “Dang, I need to use up some of that 5 lb bag of potatoes” and “What do I have in the freezer???” And once again, this is a hubby-love recipe… as in hubby loved it. He ate a bit after us but he came and found me in the bathroom while I was bathing our boys and said “Oh my goodness. THIS is really good.”

And then he told me again after his second bowl.

And again after his third.

Yep. Score.

Mexican Potato Casserole

Ingredients

  • 5 or 6 medium sized yukon gold potatoes, cut into 1/2″ pieces
  • 1 cup frozen corn
  • 1 can ROTEL
  • 1 can Cream of Chicken (or Cream of Potato or Celery if you are vegetarian)
  • 1 can of pinto beans, drained
  • 1 1/2 cup colby jack shredded cheese, divided
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp garlic salt
  • 5-6 dashes Frank’s Red Hot Cayenne Pepper Sauce (or similar)

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°.
  2. Steam the potatoes on the stovetop until “al dente”. (Can I use that term for potatoes?)
  3. Meanwhile, stir the cumin, garlic salt, and pepper sauce in with the beans and mix to combine.
  4. Mix together the corn, cream of chicken, rotel, beans, 1 1/4 cup of cheese.
  5. When the potatoes are ready, mix them in with the rest of the ingredients.
  6. Pour the mixture into a 9×13 dish and cook for 17-20 minutes.
  7. Let cool and enjoy!

Day 483: Way, Way Out

20130507-114533.jpg

Looking back at my last post, Day 481: Black Sabbath, I realized that there were so. very. many. “outs” that God gave me to not have to take that downward plunge.

My husband saying “Get a pizza for you.”
Not previously having had any wine in the house.
The moment at the store where I thought “I could get something else entirely.”
When my husband hung out in the living room longer so I had to wait to sneak out the cookie dough.

God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure. 1 Corinthians 10:13

He was all over it… on my behalf. And, honestly, I saw the signs then too. I knew that He was giving me a way out, but I was so determined to do wrong at that point that I just ignored all the lifelines He was throwing at me.

But Monday was another day entirely… a new day… with new mercies. And then this morning I was going back through my bookmarks and came across this one:

God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases Him. Philippians 2:13

It’s so cool when the Word of God expresses just what you need to know, just what you need to hear, just what I needed to be reminded of.

And ya know… this post is pretty short and sweet, but honestly, there isn’t a whole lot more to say about it! That last verse is what I’m gonna focus on today.

Day 481: Black Sabbath

20130505-221101.jpg

I get so optimistic about the sabbath these days.

That’s cause I actually follow the sabbath… well, I mean, I follow it… more… than I used to. I try to not do work (no laundry, no extra dishes, minimal cooking, no cleaning, etc) and I just rest and maybe even take a nap.

For the majority of the day today, my sabbath went well… according to plan. And I originally wrote out pretty much everything that happened during my sabbath that went according to plan and then realized it was all a bit tedious and only interesting to me, but needless to say, I did quite a bit of prep yesterday to make sure that the sabbath today was a day of rest.

And really… it was. it was a day of rest. a day for God. a day to remember that he saved us from slavery with his strong arm.

That was my day… for about 3/4 of it.

Then came {DUUUUUM DUMDUM DUM}… The Pizza.

My hubs and my boys really wanted pizza and we pretty much decided last time that we ordered from Domino’s that it would be our last, so I ran up to Target (without my kids… ahhhhhhhh) and snagged a few pizzas. And upon being asked what he would like, my hubs specifically said “Get one for you.” Oh, how sweet… He provided a way out for me.

So, what did I do?

I got the three-meat pizza.

For him.

And me.

Even though I thought to myself, “Get something else entirely… you aren’t even CRAVING pizza. Get what you want.”

But I didn’t.

And then I came home and GORGED on pizza and one glass of wine too many and then… AGAIN… with the cookie dough.

I mean, might as well, right?

GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!

And I had done so WELL earlier today. I had even resisted making myself a peanut butter and honey sandwich as an easy lunch and opted for a salad instead.

It’s just all so… so… backward.

I’m supposed to be keeping this sabbath HOLY… not indulging in all of these things that I’ve said I won’t!

And just as I said that I thought… you need to fast… like, completely, fast on the sabbath. As in NO food. Otherwise it’s a day about YOU and YOUR rest when it should be a day about HIM. It’s a day that you are to remember the horrid slavery that you were in that God rescued you from and you aren’t remembering that or celebrating that when you are eating FLIPPING COOKIE DOUGH.

Gosh guys… I hate to be Debbie Downer. Trust me… I’m looking for the positive side of me just as much as you guys are. I’m looking for that girl that was so enthralled a year ago with the Word of God. I’m looking for the girl that is who I want to be. But man, she’s hiding good… for a reason, I know.

And that’s why I’m going to bail on you now without really tying this up into a nice little bow. It’s 10:03pm and I want to get to bed so that I can get up early enough to read the Word. Forget food. Forget diets. Forget smoothies. Forget salads.

I need Jesus.

I don’t need that girl to show up again.

I need Jesus.

I need Him every day. I need Him to invade my mind. I need that strong arm. Hear me now, Jesus… I need you. I can’t get out of Egypt on my own. Come and get me Lord. Do what it takes. Burning bush. Exiled Moses. Plagues and first-borns. Come and get me.

Recipe: Build A Perfect Salad

20130503-151233.jpg

I don’t know an.y.thing. about nutrition and so whenever I make a discovery I assume that probably everyone else out there that is even remotely nutritionally focused knows about it. And this is one of those things.

However, I have learned that there are actually quite a lot of “I don’t know an.y.thing. about nutrition” people out there with me. So, if you are a nutrition junkie, feel free to say “Wow – I’m so happy that she has learned this since I have used this trick my entire life!” and if you are a nutrition newbie, then feel free to say, “Wow – I’m so happy that she has learned this since I have never thought of doing that!”

Here ya go.

Build A Perfect Salad

(for two salads)

Ingredients

When choosing your ingredients… think about colors. It’s amazing how easy it is to get a variety of nutrients when you simply vary color. Plus, to me, a pretty salad is always immediately more appetizing than all green. So, if you have a green celery… then choose a bright orange carrot. Or if you have a red tomato, choose a yellow bell pepper to compliment it.

  • 2 large carrots
  • 2 large celery stalks
  • 10-15 salad tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup peanuts, chopped
  • 1 can dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • fresh oregano (or other herb or optional)
  • feta cheese, optional
  • lettuce
  • salad dressing

Instructions (I put my “commentary” in italics!)

1. Get out your two salad bowls, cutting board, knife, and all your veggies.

2. Start out with chopping up the carrots, celery, and halving the tomatoes. As you go you’ll see how the bowl really fills up with the “good stuff”. If you realize that you’ve got way too much of a particular ingredient just put the extra in a tupperware for tomorrow.

3. Add in your peanuts, kidney beans, oregano, and feta and mix everything together. That’s right… no lettuce yet!Just look at how full your bowl is of all the good roughage with all the good nutrients… too many of our salads are filled with 80% LEAVES because that’s what we put in first… but I think that’s part of the reason that we all get so burned out on them!

4. So, NOW, add your leaves (aka: lettuce) and some dressing.

5. This step is negotiable, but I always chop-mix my salad at this point. I like to do it because it is a good way to really mix everything together, plus I have terrible TMJ and so my bites have to be pretty small. You can chop-mix it by dumping it all out on a cutting board, but that is a mess and a half. Or you can get a good serrated knife (like a steak knife) and a fork and just cut it up a lot. OR, you can do my favorite method and get a pair of these salad choppers which I use for tons of stuff.

Okay, so it’s not like some kind of phenomenal life altering recipe… it’s more of a method. But it’s gotten me to build and eat more substantial salads instead of a bowl full of mainly leaves.

{My bowls before the leaves}

20130503-151257.jpg