DO YOU HEAR WHAT I HEAR?

tl-12-21-do-you-hear-what-i-hear

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.  – Romans 15:13

Do You Hear What I Hear? was written in 1962 by Noël Regney with music by his wife, Gloria Shayne.  They wrote the song during the Cuban missile crisis, calling for peace among the peoples.  It has sold tens of millions of copies and has been recorded by hundreds of artists.

When I was a kid, I remember a singer by the name of Ed Ames singing that song at Christmas.  Isn’t it funny what you remember from childhood?  There’s something about the music of Christmas – especially Christmas past.

I’ve heard so many sermons at Christmas and almost all of them at least touch on the fact that news of Christ’s birth was told to the lowly and eventually it spread to the most mighty.  God sent His Son for ALL – everyone, regardless of status in the world.  He sent angels to the shepherds, of all people.

Do You Hear What I Hear? is about the good news of Christ’s birth being spread from the lowest to the most high.  It ends with the mighty king proclaiming the news to the people everywhere.

Have you heard?  Maybe you’ve heard some parts of the story, but haven’t stopped to think about other parts.  Lucinda’s poem today invites us to reconsider the story of Christmas – and whether we really have the whole story, or just bits and pieces.

have-you-heard

All He asks, is love that’s true and to love each other too.  Hmm…  that is something to think about this Christmas season as we celebrate the birth of Christ.  It’s been such a crazy year in the United States.  We need to look beyond what we can see with our eyes and start listening to what our God wants of us.  Christians, we need to lead the way in those things that are right in God’s eyes and those things He wants from us.  There’s no time like NOW to begin showing real love for each other.  Let’s hear the message God wants us to hear this Christmas.

The blessed Trinity…  the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, will bless us with hope, joy, and peace as we are obedient to His commands for our lives.  Can I get an AMEN in the comments here today?  🙂

 

NATIONAL GRILLED CHEESE SANDWICH MONTH

TL APRIL IS NATIONAL GRILLED CHEESE SANDWICH MONTHIt’s a meal we usually enjoy in front of the fire as snow flies outside – but yes, April is National Grilled Cheese Sandwich Month.  I must say, my husband makes the most delicious ones in the world!  Oh, so good!

Here’s a traditional recipe – one that most of us are familiar with.

WW MINI GRILLED CHEESE SANDWICHES WITH TOMATO SOUP (makes 4 servings – 6 points each)

INGREDIENTS:

2 Tbs. reduced calorie vegetable oil butter spread

4 slices reduced-calorie whole wheat bread

4 slices WW American cheese

14 1/2 oz. cream of tomato soup

DIRECTIONS:

Spread 1-1/2 tsp. vegetable oil & yogurt spread on each slice of bread. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Lay 2 slices of bread, dry side up, in skillet. Place 2 slices Reduced Fat American Pasteurized Process Cheese Product Singles on each slice of bread. Top each with the remaining 2 bread slices, spread side up. Cook until sandwich is golden brown on each side.

Remove from pan and cut each sandwich into 4 squares. Arrange 4 grilled cheese sandwich squares onto a skewer; repeat. Serve 1 grilled cheese skewer with 1 cup prepared soup.

I ran across the most interesting recipe for a grilled cheese sandwich – but hang on…  it’s really different – but in a good way.  😉

WW GRILLED SWISS CHEESE SANDWICHES (makes 4 sandwiches – 6 points each)

INGREDIENTS:

1/4 c. light mayonnaise

4 tsp. Dijon mustard

8 slices reduced calorie rye bread

8 slices WW reduced fat Swiss cheese slices

cooking spray

DIRECTIONS:

In small bowl, combine mayonnaise & mustard.  Spread 1/2 Tbs. on each piece of bread.  Top 4 pieces of bread with 2 slices of cheese each; cover with remaining bread, mayonnaise side down.

Coat skillet with cooking spray.  Heat over medium heat.  Grill sandwiches, pressing down lightly with a spatula, until lightly toasted & cheese melts, about 3-5 minutes.

If you’re looking for something to break the monotony, give this a try – it’s really pretty good!  If you have the points to spare, you can even have a little pouch of Goldfish crackers for 3 points!  Put them in your soup or just eat them on the side – either way they are so good!  🙂

ST. PATRICK’S DAY

TL 3-17 ST. PATRICK'S DAY

If a man who cannot count finds a four-leaf clover, is he lucky?  – Stanislaw J. Lec

My friend Mary has been to Ireland.  As she explained all the sights she saw, I imagined myself being there.  There’s a reason it’s called The Emerald Isle, it looks like the grass is just as green as green can be.  The land looks so rich and lush, with a lot of rocks to go with it, which I suppose explains all the stone walls we see in photographs.

May the Irish hills caress you.
May her lakes and rivers bless you.
May the luck of the Irish enfold you.
May the blessings of Saint Patrick behold you.
– Irish Blessing

I’m not Irish, but who cares?  Today I will wear my Celtic knot necklace and matching earrings and pretend I am Irish!  We will probably eat at a local Irish pub and talk about the rainbow and the pot o’ gold at the end of it!  I’ll have a non-alcoholic green drink and sing off-key if the occasion calls for it.

Did you know that a rainbow is actually a full circle?  So technically, there is not an “end” of the rainbow – it goes on and on…  so much for that Irish tradition.  I’m not joking – to see a photo, go to

http://www.slate.com/blogs/bad_astronomy/2014/09/17/circular_rainbow_rare_optic_effect_seen_from_the_air.html

Don’t get me started on the gold.  I heard there are some of those gold companies that have been accused of short-changing their ounces, if you know what I mean.  Ugh – these are days to be wary of any transaction you undertake to be sure!

I like this poem by Lucinda Berry Hill.

I don’t have one negative thing to say about emerald-green!  As far as I know, emerald-green is still the color to be wearing today (unless you’re fond of being pinched).   I have no particular aversion to being pinched, depending on how hard and by whom…  LOL!

Oh, I hope you will subscribe to my You Tube channel!  See you there!  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCS7sW2Aph5FkgrJUBbXLQcA

As we think of the luck of the Irish today, I am reminded of a story about a very unlucky bank robber:

When an attempted robbery at a home-improvement store went awry, the suspect fled across the street and jumped a fence…  right into a nudist resort.  As the Orlando Sentinel pointed out, because the would-be criminal was “one of the only folks wearing clothing,” he was easily spotted by police.

May God be with you as you celebrate today!  🙂

 

 

CELEBRATION OF LIFE DAY

TL 1-22 CELEBRATION OF LIFE DAY

1-22 WHEN JOY OVERFLOWS

SPECIAL TREASURES

 

celebration%20of%20life%20statue
Celebration of Life Columbus, Ohio

It’s CELEBRATION OF LIFE DAY, when we take some time to celebrate life, as the name indicates.  To different people this means different things.  For those who are parents, it means you appreciate your children and grandchildren.  For those who are single, you cherish the friendships you’ve been blessed with through the years.

It’s not important what you decide to do today, but it’s about the people in our lives.  Friends and family who mean the most to us.  Lavish your love on them today.  Count your blessings and celebrate them today.  Celebrate for them and with them.

Love and compassion for all human life is not a “war on women” and we cannot be intimidated by those who say so.  – Dr. Ben Carson

There is a bronze statue at the Veteran’s Memorial Park in downtown Columbus, Ohio called “Celebration of Life”.  This day is of particular significance in that city.

Don’t wait until you are in bad health to celebrate your life.  Be grateful to God for every day you wake up and can be productive and do good deeds for the Lord.  He made you to serve Him!  He’s so happy when His children love and appreciate the life He gave them.

As you celebrate this wonderful day God gave you, I have two suggestions:

  • MAKE IT JOYFUL
  • MAKE IT MEANINGFUL

The joy we as Christians feel in our spirits should act as a catalyst in planning our celebration.  So many activities in life are just centered around food and beverage.  These things are not bad, but let’s try to go beyond the surface and make this a heartfelt celebration with all the people who mean the most to us.

Life does not give you what you ask for.  It gives you the people, places and situations that allow you to develop what you ask for.  If you don’t get it right the first time, life will give it to you again because life is very generous that way.  – Tracy McMillan

Life is a vapor and it ends unexpectedly and tragically in some cases.  Nobody knows when their time is up.  With that in mind, make sure your celebration leaves all the people in your life knowing for certain that they are loved by you.  Don’t let this opportunity pass you by.  If you have put off either telling someone how you feel or patching up a difficult relationship – no more excuses – today is the day to do it.  Tell someone how you feel.  Patch things up with someone if you need to.

This is how peace can come into your life.  As you surround yourself with love and hope from the joy already inside you.  God’s Holy Spirit lives in you.  He wants you to experience love and hope in your family and with your friends.  He wants to take away all the doubting and fear you feel.  He will replace it with the kind of peace that only He can give.  A peace far better than anything on this earth can provide.

Celebrate love.  Celebrate hope.  Celebrate peace.  Celebrate joy.  Celebrate life!  ❤

 

 

 

FOOD DAY

TL 10-24 FOOD DAY

10-24 FAVORITE FOODS

Most holidays are centered around food – let’s admit it.  Birthdays and anniversaries are not complete without cake and ice cream.  We all have our favorite foods at Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Today is different – we celebrate food itself!

Diabetes has taught me to look at food choices differently than I used to.  I used to eat more carbohydrates and unhealthy fats.  Now I have restricted both in order to keep my blood glucose happy and lose some weight.  Good fuel equals good overall health and a good mood!  Healthy foods are not more expensive or less tasty than unhealthy foods.

The only drawback of fresh fruits and vegetables is that they need to be used rather quickly after being purchased.  You do have to visit the market more often, but the benefits far outweigh the drawbacks.  Once you begin to enjoy meals with fresh or frozen foods, you won’t want to eat packaged, canned or overly processed foods again.

I refer to junk food as “party food” because the only time I allow myself to eat it is in a social situation.  There was a time when I took a bag of chips with me to watch television and mindlessly popped them – then wondered why I gained so much weight!  Now that I’ve been forced to think about what I eat, it’s easier now.  I have to think of food as fuel for my body and not comfort for my emotions.  It’s amazing how freeing it is once you separate the two.

People tend to buy processed packaged foods for the convenience factor.  Open, heat and eat.  I challenge you to read the labels of the convenience foods next time you’re at the grocery store.  Before I had to think about eating, I bought the instant packets of oatmeal.  I didn’t read the labels because I didn’t think I needed to.  Once I did start reading them – I was shocked at the amount of sodium and sugar in those tiny little packets!  Now I buy steel-cut oatmeal with no added sugars or sodium.  What a difference that one change made!

Fresh food does demand more preparation – (chopping, dicing, etc.) but in the long run, it is well worth the effort.  Celebrate real food today!  😀

 

NATIONAL JUST BECAUSE DAY

TL 8-27 JUST BECAUSE DAY

 

8-27 HERE IS THE REASON WHY

Today is  NATIONAL JUST BECAUSE DAY!!!

The sky’s the limit when it comes to celebrating this day.  Why do we believe that life is worth the living – and giving more of ourselves for friends, family and spouses?  Just because Christ Lives!

Maybe you’d like to bake a batch of cookies for your neighbor and hand deliver them – just because.

It’d be fun to burn a special CD of favorite songs for your special someone – just because.  You can leave it in the CD player at home or in their car.  They’ll be rocking around the house or on the way to their next destination.

How about setting up a special ice cream bar for your family – just because?  Get all your family’s favorite flavors and decorate the dining room to look festive and fun.

A special dinner for two may be in order today – just because.  Make arrangements to get a sitter for the evening and put your best tablecloth on the dining room table along with some tapers and soft music.  Fix your husband / wife’s favorite meal and then gussy up and get ready for an evening of fireworks!  Ooh la la…

When was the last time you watched your spouse’s favorite movie?  Maybe tonight you should plan to pop some popcorn and enjoy the flick together – just because.  Cuddling is encouraged.

We don’t really need a specific reason to be kind to the one we’re married to – or anyone for that matter.  These are just a few suggestions for ways to celebrate JUST BECAUSE DAY!!!  When the love of Christ is in us, it is a natural response to share His love with those around us.

 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God.  – 1 John 4:7

Let’s make someone’s day better today!  Let’s share God-given talents with friends and neighbors.  🙂

BACKWARD DAY

TL 1-31 BACKWARD DAY

What is Yad Drawkcab???  Well…  it’s BACKWARD DAY!!!  This is the time to do everything backward.  It’s so much easier for kids in school to do this.  Adults have been conditioned and need to literally make themselves do things backward.  Oh to be young again – and have the ability to be silly.

Write backward, talk backward. Wear your shirt with the back in the front. Eat a steak dinner for breakfast, and pancakes for dinner. Play a board game from the finish line to the start. Put a masking tape line on the floor and practice walking backwards.  Whatever you do, make it fun!

Just remember to post every selfie you take today – you can’t pick and choose which ones you put on facebook!

To see a person’s true face, look at the photos that do not get posted.  – Brandon Specktor

Use your imagination!  The sky is the limit.  What sort of backward things can you think of???

 Remember, Ginger Rogers did everything Fred Astaire did, but backwards and in high heels.  – Faith Whittlesey

This would be so much fun to celebrate with your kids or grandkids – and make sure you have the camera handy because you will definitely make some great memories for that scrapbook!

If you do decide to celebrate, make sure to share your photos with me on facebook!

Some parent is very talented with their video camera!  I really like the game of pool.  The spaghetti…  um – not so much.  I wonder how they did that.  

 To look backward for a while is to refresh the eye, to restore it, and to render it the more fit for its prime function of looking forward.  – Margaret Fairless Barber, The Roadmender

For one day, bond with your children in a most unusual way.  Live life to the fullest with your little ones while you have them.  You want to look backwards in time and remember more laughter than tears.

Again with the food…  LOL!!!  Oh well…

 In every real man a child is hidden that wants to play.   – Friedrich Nietzsche

Today I read about a mini-golf place that advertised they will celebrate Backward Day.  They will have everyone play the course backwards from hole 18 to hole 1.  Admission is also backwards – adults pay as children.  How fun would that be?

 Happy is he who still loves something he loved in the nursery:  He has not been broken in two by time; he is not two men, but one, and he has saved not only his soul but his life.   – G.K. Chesterton

That looks like fun.  The goal is to spend time with your kids and be happy!  May you and your family have a lovely Backward Day!  🙂