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Sep 30, 2010

Chicken!


Garlic Rosemary Chicken

1 (5 pound) roasting chicken, skinned
2 (5 inch) rosemary sprigs
2 celery stalks with leaves, each cut into 4 pieces
2 small onions, quartered
16 garlic cloves
1 T lemon juice
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp paprika
Rosemary sprigs (optional)
1 lemon, halved (optional)

Remove and discard giblets and neck from chicken. Rinse chicken under cold water; pat dry.
Trim excess fat. Place 2 rosemary sprigs, celery, 4 onion wedges, and 4 garlic cloves in cavity of chicken, and tie legs together with twine. Place chicken, breast side up, in a 4-quart electric slow cooker; add remaining onion and garlic to cooker. Drizzle lemon juice over chicken; sprinkle with next 3 ingredients. Cover with lid; cook on high-heat setting 1 hour. Reduce to low-heat setting, and cook 6 hours or until chicken is tender. Discard rosemary. Serve chicken with vegetables and garlic. Garnish with additional rosemary sprigs and lemon halves, if desired.

What I do: My chicken is usually between 3 - 4 pounds and I don't remove the skin. I have used dried rosemary but do use a real lemon (as opposed to an artificial one; those are hard to juice).
I don't measure things unless I'm baking so I'm pretty sure I've never used 16 cloves of garlic. And I never have twine for the legs. I just tell that chicken to be a good little bird and keep her lugs tucked in. Also I have hurried the cooking process by cooking on high for 4 - 5 hours.
But this chicken turns out really well and somehow it even browns!
recipe from this book

Sep 28, 2010

Grateful

Sometimes no matter what my head knows and no matter how much I believe with all my heart that I will see Andrew again, the grief overwhelms me.
Certainly I do not grieve as those who have no hope, yet I do grieve as a mother who cannot see her young son. And for who knows how long.
I can have lots of good days and even good times when I think of Andrew and I can smile. Even though the "missing him" never lets up ~ it just doesn't. How could it when I always miss him? It's not like he's gone off to college or gotten married and moved away. (Not at 12.) Then I could call him and look forward to holiday breaks. There are no more real conversations between us. Only the ones in my heart. And they are a poor substitute.

I had such a beautiful time in Maryland. Our friends there and the body of Christ (new friends) at the church treated us exceptionally well.
I had my daughter with me and that helped me quite a bit, too. Before leaving home, and at the last minute, I decided to take my pillow as a "carry on." It was Andrew's pillow and I have been using it for months. I debated on whether I should take his robe with me. I always sleep with it. I did take it; I stuffed it in the pillowcase.

When I was speaking in Maryland, especially on Sunday morning when I was not so much sharing my story but teaching, I had a moment in which I felt I had "come home." It was like an inner sighing. I think that is what happens when we experience our spiritual gifting.

Tuesday on the flight home, the realization that I was returning home but there would not be Andrew there, washed over me. And the tears flowed. My daughter put her arm around me until I could control my tears.
Friday my husband had surgery to remove the rod from his leg and the last two pins (ski accident on 1/09). They called me back to the recovery room and it looked so much like an ER that my heart began to pound. And then I heard that awful beaping of the monitor. I remembered that sound and it brought back the anguish of Andrew's pain.

Saturday I ran in the Miles For Hope (brain cancer research) 5k. I saw posters honoring the survivors or memorializing those who did not survive. From what I could tell they were all adults. I did not make a poster for Andrew. I just felt it was too soon. I didn't want to "put him out there" in that way. And anyway we had the Team Andrew shirts. That felt right and it felt like enough for now.

Sunday I went to church with my oldest son. My daughter stayed home to assist her dad.
Through parts of the service I hung my head and hot tears landed on my linen skirt.
On the way home, we stopped at the gravesite and I dusted off the plastic name plate. It was broken in two places. (We have not yet ordered the permanent marker but feel that now is the time. It's been hard to think about that.)

Yesterday the tears would simply not stop for long. I asked God to please help me.

"Help me feel better. What's going on with me? Please help me."

I took my camera outside and took three pictures that mirrored my feelings ~ the purple flower with its blooms drooping, the crepe myrtle devoid of her lacy, pink blooms, the fallen tree grown too big for its container. Through tears I took pictures.
I debated on whether I should share my feelings here.

Grateful ~ Thank you for sending encouragement my way. Thank you for praying for me.

I am very grateful for you.

This song is soothing to me.





Andrew at 9 years old.
I just wanted to share a picture with you that I've never posted. Isn't my boy handsome? See that dimple on his right cheek? He has 3 freckles at the bottom curve of his left ear. They form a smile. I used to trace them and then kiss those freckles. Andrew and I called them "freckers." And almost every day I would tell him, "It's 'kiss the freckers day' and then you know what would happen. I often wonder what he will look like when finally I see him again in Heaven.

Grateful ~  "For I know that my Redeemer lives,
And He shall stand at last on the earth;
And after my skin is destroyed, this I know,
That in my flesh I shall see God.." Job 19:25-26

This scripture has been going through my mind lately.

Sep 27, 2010

Needy

Today I am in need.

Grief overwhelms me and the tears don't stop for long.
When you pray today, please remember me.

Sep 26, 2010

Team Andrew and Miles For Hope

Saturday, 9/25, Team Andrew ran and biked in Miles For Hope...Moving Towards a Cure for Brain Tumors

Team Andrew shirts
Back of shirt with Andrew's Message
More pictures on See My Mom Run!

One Fine Man was unable to participate in Miles For Hope. He had surgery on his leg Friday. You may remember he had a ski accident on Jan. 1, 2009, in which he had a compound tib/fib fracture with skin grafts. Hopefully with the removal of the rod and pins, he will be able to run again.
2009 was a very rough year for us.
Sometimes "Life is hard. Always Look to Jesus."

We were blessed to have special family friends run and bike on Team Andrew.

Sep 22, 2010

To Baltimore and Back

The table where I was invited to sit and have tea.
Isn't it pretty?

Joan...Director of the Ladies' Ministry Board
~creator of the table~
Menu: tea, scones, chicken salad on croissants, fruit, assorted desserts including coconut creme pie

Joan made me another pie!

Sailing


My girl and me

Last Day in Maryland
We were well cared for, loved on and spoiled by my dear friends whose home we stayed in and by the wonderful people of Heritage Community Church in Severn, MD.
I spoke at the Ladies' Annual Tea on Saturday and partnered with the pastor in the 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. Sunday services.


I'm including the link to the podcast (9/19) should you care to listen in.

Sep 21, 2010

Home Again

Thanks for all the support and encouraging words. We return home today. What an outpouring of love and support my daughter and I have received. We've been spoiled.
We are blessed.

Sep 15, 2010

Get Ready, Get Set, Go!

I am getting ready and getting set to go! We leave for Maryland in a couple of days.

My girl and I are going together. She will sing and I will speak. (I'm singing, too.)

My girl and me...5/10
LaDon & Steve
We'll be staying with them. LaDon and I go waaaaay back. She and Steve are a great couple. Steve is the pastor of the church where I'll be speaking. He has invited me to speak with him in the Sunday a.m. services.

My boy, Avery and me...6/10
I'll be missing this boy while I'm gone.
And this man.

My One Fine Man and me...7/10

Sleepy Head Ted
 And this pup.

This boy I never leave behind because he is always in my heart. But I'm always missing him.

video

Andrew and his passion ~ skateboarding
Today marks nine months since Andrew left Earth for Heaven.
Nine Months.

Sep 13, 2010

WWMM

Salmon Patty Slider
I am so in awe of my mother. She made the best suppers every day for years and years and years. Two things we could always count on for supper: our beverage was always tea (Sweet - We didn't know it was served unsweetened.) and either cornbread  homemade in a cast iron skillet or biscuits from scratch. There was never anything instant and every meal was always delicious!

Salmon Love at First Bite
Some days I am stumped for what to fix. And I have to admit that lately meal planning has fallen to the wayside.

Tonight's dinner was inspired by WWMM ~ What Would Mother Make?
Salmon sliders
When Mother made salmon patties, it was usually accompanied by cottage fries and onions, LaSeur English peas and biscuits.
My meal tonight was: salmon patty sliders, purple hulled peas, and tater tots!


I never make salmon patties the same way twice.
However, the basic recipe calls for a can of drained salmon, diced onion, diced bell pepper (mine aren't so diced ~ no patience for dicing), one egg, 1/2 cup panko bread crumbs and salt/pepper to taste.
I dredge the patties in cornmeal then fry in a bit of canola oil, turning once.
I googled "salmon patties" and there are lots of variations.


Do you make salmon patties?


See this site from Alaska Seafood dot org for the health benefits of canned salmon and recipes.

Sep 12, 2010

Make Me Over Cause It's Time To Change



I won a blog makeover! Trying to decide the look I wanted was like totally redoing a room in my home. I like lots of different looks...French Country, Traditional with a Twist, or Casual Elegance. I like color and I like neutrals. When you blog, your little space online is a lot like your home. You want it to reflect something of who you are.
short, brown hair

So when Melanie of Elegant Custom Blogs began the process of making me over...I mean giving my blog a make over, I wasn't really sure of the new look I wanted.



short brown hair with highlights


a little longer, a little lighter
I don't know how she did it but she took me in a direction I didn't even know I wanted to go. And I am so happy that she did.

Thanks, Melanie. By the way I must say I really like your name!
Getting longer and blonder

longer, blonder...I should probably stop now...
In the words of the Brady Bunch, "When it's time to change, you've got to rearrange..."

Sha Na Na Na Na Na Na Na Na...

Sep 10, 2010

I'll Run To You

So you think you can't run? I used to think that, too. Read the story here of how I got started running.


Running ~ 9/9/10
And read the story here of why I started running again to regain my emotional and physical strength.

Who knew God would run alongside me and strengthen my heart in what I like to call My 3 Mile Messages. Read about it here.

And if you've been toying with the thoughts of running, go here for a great article on how to get started.

Let me encourage you to take care of your physical body. Most of my life I have been at a good weight for my height of 5' 2 1/2". However, over a period of about 6 years I managed to eat lots of desserts because I managed to bake lots of desserts! I enjoyed every bite but I did not enjoy gradually saying goodbye to my smaller clothes and shopping sizes too big for my height. January 1, 2008, I put myself on an individualized eating plan. My main workout was The 30 Day Shred ~ Jillian Michaels. By April I had lost over 20 pounds. I maintained the lower weight for over a year. I have since lost about 15 more pounds.*

Running, I believe, is a gift to me from God. It makes me feel better in every way. Is it hard? Sometimes. Do I always want to go for a run? I don't always feel like it but discipline carries me through when I don't feel the desire. I am always glad when I just do it. Sometimes I have to stop thinking about whether I want to run and just get ready and get out the door. Even a bad run is a good run because I did it!


9/9/10
photo shoot in my backyard courtesy of my son Avery

I love this old fence in the background.
The fence and me ~ weathered but still standing ~
I blog here on running. You'll find interviews with other moms who run, healthy recipes, cute running clothes and more! I'll be hosting a give-a-way soon. So make sure you become a follower of See My Mom Run!

*(Due to the cancer diagnosis and Andrew's passing, I lost another 15 pounds. I add this to explain the additional weight loss.)

Sep 9, 2010

Sharing Hearts

Monday I met Debbie from Heart Choices. We enjoyed a walk through her sister's neighborhood which is very near my neighborhood. If you see a little "glow" in this picture it's because we are post walk in the Florida humidity!
What a pleasure to meet this sister in Christ and to chat awhile about the goodness of God. A side bonus was meeting her lovely sister, gracious brother-in-law and sweet daddy.

Debbie & Melanie


Debbie, Lisa, Melanie
Then who should appear at the door but Lisa from Sharing Life with Lisa!
Lisa is vivacious and lights up the house. We were able to pray together and I was the recipient of love and hugs from both of these sweet sisters. What a glorious place Heaven will be when the whole family gathers and we put our feet under the table and feast.
I wonder if we will be taking pictures then?

Hey! If you are ever in my area (Tampa Bay), let me know. The beach is only 10 minutes from me (unless it's Spring Break). I'll take you to my favorite sandy spot.

Sep 7, 2010

Vegging Out

For the next 10 days I am joining my daughter in the goal of eating more fruits and vegetables and less animal products.
(Not eliminating. Just decreasing)



I tried a recipe for black bean burgers yesterday. They were very good.  But the leftovers were even better!
The recipe makes 6 burgers and they are very filling. While Dad and Son were eating grilled kielbasa on Labor Day. Mom and Daughter had black bean burgers instead. With cumin and cilantro, there was a definite Tex Mex flavor.
Here is the link to the recipe. It's a "keeper."

Avery's current favorite breakfast
My Monster Bagels
buttered, toasted "plain" bagel with cheese, egg and sausage
~definitely not "a veggie tale"~

Do you ever watch Food Network's Cupcake Wars? I saw the episode in which this very cupcake was a winner. A young vegan chef, Chloe Coscarelli, won against bakers of traditional egg and butter cupcakes. I took a look at Coscarelli's food blog and I will be trying some of her recipes. In fact, I can't wait!
I'll share my ups and downs over the next 10 days of "vegging out."
Chocolate Strawberry Shortcake Cupcake
Photo credits: http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/09/06/tasty-vegan-food-cupcakes-show-it-can-be-done/?partner=rss&emc=rss
With all of the great new vegan and vegetarian recipes, how about you, are you eating less animal products?
One more thing ~ All of us in our house have complained about a lack of energy and overall fatigue lately. While it could be a part of the grieving process, we are all sick and tired of being tired and having low energy. (I'm still running however!) Hopefully I can find a quick fix for our energy ebb!
As Family Manager, this falls to me. Got any ideas for us? Help a mother out!

Sep 4, 2010

As I was clicking through the pictures on my niece's Face Book, I came to this one. Inspired by her happy state, I wrote a few lines and sent them to her. She added them in various script to her photograph. We made a good team on this impromptu project today!


My niece
"She leaps in the sunset
Water at her feet.
Arms in joyful pose,
Blessings are replete."

replete: abundantly supplied, abounding

Sep 3, 2010

See?

a  photo taken while I sat on my front porch this week
See the spider? You can't see its web.

Sometimes I wonder what we might see if our eyes were opened to the things of the Spirit.
A few weeks after we received the diagnosis of brain cancer in our young son, Andrew, I wrote some words on a piece of scrap paper. A few months ago while cleaning out my desk, I found the scrap of paper. I tossed it in the trash.

I had lost my confidence. I began to doubt that what I had written meant anything at all. I had clung to those words for nearly 4 months...from diagnosis to death.

When I found them again, I felt mocked.

A few days ago while running my 3.1 miles, those words came back to me. And it was then I "saw" their value. I wish that I could retrieve the paper with the words. Too late for that.

But the words are still with me - written on my heart.

I am a believer in a personal God. A God who loved us too much to leave us alone. A God who was willing to give of Himself to rescue us from destruction. A God who, in a sense, became flesh colored in order to bridge the great divide between Heaven and Earth.

I am a believer in a God who knows intimately of suffering. A God who is well acquainted with our suffering. A God who speaks to us in varied ways.

A few months ago I tossed aside His words spoken to my heart. I doubted whether they were His words to me. I supposed they were just my own.

A few days ago I "heard" the words again. And I knew. And I know. Again I am clinging to the words. They kept me going last year. And they will keep me going. For every morning and every minute, for every step and every mile, I am that much closer to the realization of those words. Words on a scrap of paper tossed away in hurt. Words now drawn on my heart, tattooed for healing.

They are words that pull me from the pain of the past and ache of the present. They are words that draw me toward the freedom of my future.

They are simple yet profound.

"Don't look at what you see;
See what is coming."


The apostle Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 13:12, "For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I also am known."

Ancient mirrors, which were made in Corinth, were made of metal and gave dim reflections, an illustration of our imperfect knowledge during this age. But knowledge will be full and instantaneous in the future state of glory. (footnote in my Bible)

John writes in 1 John 3:2 "Beloved, now we are children of God; and it has not yet been revealed what we shall be, but we know that when He is revealed, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is."

I threw away the words because I had clung to them as an assurance that Andrew would be healed and live here with us.
And now, of course, Andrew is healed and alive. But he is not with us. There is an ache and a sadness because we long for him. We miss him. We love him.

The other day I submitted to the tattooing of the words on my heart
because now I understand and cling to those words in a different way.
One day, all wrongs will be righted and all promises will be realized.
And so I will no longer look at what I see but I will see what is coming.

And what is coming is truly glorious! We shall live as we were meant to live before sin rocked our world. We shall see clearly. We shall see Him for who He really is and we shall be known for who we really are.

So for now I will walk this path and run my race as best I can with this earthly vision but I'll be ever on the lookout for a glimpse of what is to come.

A simple shift of my vantage point, and the sun highlights what I could not see before.
See the web now?