Monday, April 30, 2012

Homemade Ginger Cookies and French Bread…


Today’s weather was partly drizzle-y and gray.

A perfect day to put a pot of homemade spaghetti sauce on to simmer,

and then have 3 year old granddaughter over to help me do some baking.

I’ve been wanting to bake the “most divine ginger cookies ever” since I saw them on

Kimberly Taylor’s gorgeous food photo blog, and today I finally did.

I think they are.

Divine that is.

A bit crispy on the outside and moist and chewy on the inside.





Then we made some homemade french bread from Maria’s recipe.

This has become a fairly frequent favorite at my house.

It’s great alongside spaghetti and a green salad, or a big pot of homemade soup.



                    Both recipes are fairly easy to make and definitely worth a try…just click on the links above.

And of course, having a cute little 3 year old, blonde, blue-eyed sous chef by your side,

makes the whole baking experience even better.


Still following,


Sunday, April 29, 2012

Iphone thanks…


I’ll post my Joy Dare gratitude list with Ann’s prompts as usual today,

but I find myself missing writing down so many other thanks worthy things,

and yet many of them I’ve captured via my Iphone.

like the white blossoms in the old mason jar in the photo above…


or the way these leopard shoes are my three year old granddaughter’s favorites

and how she inevitably puts them on the wrong feet…


or this photo that my daughter texted me of youngest granddaughter right after her bath,

oh that hair!…


and the sky at blue hour driving home from the church one night last week…


or what about my new glasses that my youngest daughter says “look hipster”,

(hopefully that’s not a code word for dorky)…


a warm, sunny day, enjoying time outside with my granddaughter…


and enjoying ice cream cones together too…

So many blessings, so much to give thanks for.


I’ve taken the Joy Dare.

I’m counting one thousand thanks in one year.

I hunt for thanksgiving using the prompts Ann gives us each month.

If you are interested in joining in, click the link above or at the bottom of this post.

I continue to count my thanks

piling up gratitude day by day

in my little black journal…


3 gifts reflecting-

-I’m reflecting on Psalm 40

-glimpses of my daughter reflected in my granddaugters

-life-changing memories reflected in the photos of our trip to Ghana

3 gifts fragile-

-ministering to broken people

-lilacs in a jam jar

006 pklilacs


a gift cloth-

-homespun kitchen towels


a gift steel-

-pots and pans

a gift wood-

-people gathering for dinner around our dining room table

3 gifts moving-

-remembering how the palm trees whip in the wind when it’s going to rain in Ghana


-getting back into the rhythm of normal eating and exercising now that we’re back home

-the sea, ever moving, ever beautiful, and the blessing of getting to see it in Africa


3 gifts ugly beautiful-

-blueberry pancakes a little too well done on the edges

-old bread boards


-old wooden ladder


3 gifts orange-

-Hope City logo, (our son-in-law and daughter’s church),

and how every time our granddaughter sees the color orange she says, “Hope City!”

-the success of Code Orange Easter

-orange roses on the info. table at church

3 gifts in dirt-

-two rose bushes

-four lavender plants

-mint, parsley, rosemary, and hopefully some basil springing up soon


Gratefully yours,


Saturday, April 28, 2012

Fishers of men…


(Fishing boats in the village of Winneba, Ghana, West Africa.)

Since our return from Ghana a week and a half ago,

it’s in my thoughts and prayers every day.

From my observation, it’s a country that knows of God and Jesus,

but knowing Him personally as Lord and Savior is a whole different thing.


More often than not Christian “slogans” or bits of scripture are painted on their little businesses

or plastered on their cars, rather like a lucky charm.

(My favorite was a little food shack called “This Too Shall Pass”, and no, I’m not making that up.Smile)

In one little village we went to, the children gathered around us eagerly to sing and hear a Bible story.

They were familiar with the story, but afterwards when we explained the way of salvation and asked who had already received Jesus as Savior and Lord, not one raised their hand.

However, all were eager to do so and prayed aloud with us.


So, just like here in the U.S., those who really do know Jesus need to be fishers of men,

and need to know, and be able to explain,

the difference between knowing of Jesus and having a personal relationship with Him.

If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord

and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead,

you will be saved.

  For it is by believing in your heart that you are made right with God,

and it is by confessing with your mouth that you are saved.”

Romans 10:9-10 New Living Translation


Still following,



Thursday, April 26, 2012

Friday’s Favs…treasure from a junk store


On the way to my daughter’s house is a junk store.

It says “antique store” on the door, but it’s definitely not a well-styled antique store.

It’s crammed with stuff, it’s old, dusty and musty, and it’s on a not very desirable corner of a busy street.

To top it off, more often than not, there’s a closed sign on the door.

Still, I do crane my neck to look in the window whenever we drive by it, you know,

just in case there’s an irresistable treasure.

On one such drive by, lo and behold, I spied an old watering can.

I’ve been wanting a watering can for the plants and patio planters,

(that I don’t have yet, but plan to get for our new patio),

that the sprinkler system doesn’t reach.

And since I need a watering can, why not one with some personality?

On my next drive by the junk store, it was open for a change.

I pulled in and asked the price of the watering can in the window.

Then I offered the owner quite a bit less than the asking price,

and she said, “close enough.”

Yippee skippee!

A watering can with personality for even less than an inexpensive one at the local garden center!

I do plan to actually use it outdoors for watering plants.

But in the meanwhile, it does look kind of cute indoors holding flowers too.





Friday’s comin’ so I wish you all a…


Still following,


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Wednesday, April 25, 2012




It was good to be back at our home church, after missing two weeks while in Ghana.

But all through worship I kept thinking about them,

the Ghanaians we met,

the way they dance in worship,

the way, no matter what type of place they call home,

they come to church clean and neat and wearing their finest and best,

the way church lasts for hours,

yet not once did I hear a Ghanaian baby or child fuss or cry during the service,

and I still wonder how they do it.

I felt it, there in my home church, that I had left a piece of my heart on that other continent,

yes, because my daughter, son-in-law and grandchildren are still there,

but more than just that.

I realize that they are part of me, those beautiful Ghanaians,

and I am part of them,

and together we are all a part of the beautiful tapestry that God calls

the body of Christ.

The threads:


Bishop A., bishop for his network of churches in Ghana,

who used to walk miles into the villages to hold services

and has raised up over twenty churches,

yet in such humility and lowliness,

set the tables, served us tea,



Bishop’s wife, who isn’t confident in her ability to speak English,

who greeted me with the words,

“Helloooooo, Mom!”,

and while we visited with her,

out of the blue began to sing “I love You, Lord, and I lift my voice…”,

in English,

and she didn’t know, but God did,

how that’s the song I’ve always sung with my grandbabies before they went to sleep,

and how what she did was God’s sign to me

that His eye is on my grandbabies while they’re in Ghana…


J., who cooked our meals while we stayed at the retreat center,

whose jollof rice with sauce was the best,

and who lit up like a Christmas tree when I told her that the meal was delicious…

O., who is in charge of cleaning the retreat center,

a young woman in her mid-twenties,

who probably weighs no more than 120lbs,

but who carried 5 gallon containers full of water on her head

to every guest in the retreat center so we could bathe

when the pump quit working…


F., Bishop’s intern, son of the pastor in the fishing village, Winneba,

loves Jesus, loves to preach, a servant,

a world changer…


K., our driver, guide, protector, friend,

one whose life was changed by Jesus in every way,

fun, funny…

So many threads,

pastors in little villages,

women who eagerly attended the workshop I taught at the conference,

beautiful Ghanaian children,

beautiful threads,

knit together in Christ.


Still following,