Thursday, October 28, 2010
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
It was a cold and brisk fall day when I went into labor much too early with our first daughter. The colors were changing and Steve was woodcutting with family. The smells and colors of fall bring it all back in an instant. I'll turn the corner on a country road and the autumnal display of reds and yellows will make me catch my breath as the reminder brings it all rushing back. The smell of a warming fire or the sound of crisp leaves under my feet is all it takes.
It was the following fall when we welcomed our second daughter into this world, this child we would take home to keep. I spent the nine months fighting grief refusing this child I carried to know only a crying mother. Her arrival, however, opened my heart to joy once again but also to the grief of my loss that snuck in the same door. A joy we desperately clung to, this child of grace who brought healing to our hearts. Unaware her joy and grace were a salve to our wounds, a sling for our hearts and a safe place to let go.
It was that same fall it became clear to both of us that God had plans for us still. Plans for us to prosper, for a hope, for a future. Our little family of three would not be the same. Our little girl was just five weeks old when we made the decision to accept the call on our hearts to open our family to two little children across the ocean. The prayer of my mother's heart she prayed on our wedding day coming to fruition that we would be blessed with children and a blessing to children. Life is a gift we said, one we have now with no guarantee of tomorrow. Now is the time.
It was again fall the next year when those little round faces joined our family making us a family of five. Three more years and two more little faces born to us, now a family of seven. Each change of the seasons bringing more and more life as the grief slowly faded.
Watching the colors change this year I am once again reminded of my grief. Once again I feel it washing over me but it does not overtake. When I catch my breath and look around my table, I see the blessings of my children that are my beauty from the ashes.
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
Organizing this way does several things. The most important one for all of us is that it allows the readers in our little school to start without me. They can look at their assignment sheet and start on their independent work while I work with youngers on their handwriting and math.
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
I pulled out a gem of a recipe book last week, the absolute best engagement gift ever. My grandmother put together a list of family favorites and hand copied all of the recipes into a book for me. I have used it over and over the last thirteen years. It was a rainy day and I was looking for something warm and easy for lunch but more special than the standard grilled cheese. I came across one of my favorites that she makes, Corn Chowder. It was perfect for a mid-week lunch. It's easy to make and is fast, too.
Corn Chowder (serves 5 well but I like to double it for my 7 and have a few servings leftover)
Cost per serving: $1- $1.50
1/2lb bacon, diced 3 1/2 - 4 cups potatoes diced up
1/2 cup chopped onion 1/8 tsp salt
1/2 cup chopped celery 1/8 tsp pepper
2 Tblsp flour snipped parsley (optional)
4 cups milk paprika (optional)
2 cans creamed corn shredded cheese (optional)
In a large saucepan fry bacon until crisp. Remove bacon(set aside) and all but 3 tblsp of drippings from the pan. Add onion, celery and potatoes to drippings and cook until the onion and celery are tender. The potatoes will finish as you go. Remove pan from heat and add flour. Blend flour in and add milk. Heat to boiling and boil for one minute. Stir in corn and seasoning. Heat through. Stir in bacon. Serve and garnish each bowl with snipped parsley and paprika or shredded cheese.
This soup is so good with a dense bread or baguette. Let me know if you try it. Enjoy!!!