Thursday, August 10, 2017

New Tip, A Blast from the Past, A Future Project

Happy afternoon Y'all!!!     I hope that where ever you are today that you are enjoying your neck of the woods.     It's a pleasant day here in mine.     A bit cooler than it has been, yay!!!!     I live in the heart of the Solar Eclipse belt 2017.    It's gonna be exciting around here.   All the motels are already booked up for miles and miles and miles around.    They are expecting hundreds of thousands of people to come from all over to be in the places that are considered to be in the solar belt that stretches all across the US.    A lot of the schools will closed, a lot of public businesses and offices will be closed that day.     They are even warning of the impending traffic jams that will come with all the people wanting to see such an event.    I think I heard them say that the next such event wasn't to happen again for 500 years.    So, what I'm thinkin' is that I "may" not be around to see the next one, what about you, you gonna be here to see next one?     hahaha      While it is exciting to think about and see, my one concern is that people will look at the eclipse and end up ruining their precious eye sight.     I will not be looking up at the sun, because if you know anyone that is low visioned or com pletely blind, think about what they would give to have their eye sight.   Is looking at the sun worth losing your eyesight or damaging it?    Beware of the scam shades that people are selling and giving away!!!!     I don't know about anyone else, but I don't trust those glasses!!!!    I don't trust anyone to have my best interests at heart, but me, when it comes to something like this.   Maybe I'm a bit silly, I've certainly been accused of much worse, but I enjoy my eyesight, I sure hope you do too.     There will be many videos on tv and the internet to watch after the fact.     What I am excited about is seeing how dark it gets at 1 o'clock or what ever time it's supposed to get dark here in my neck of the woods.    Will the chickens go to their roosts?    Will the cows come in to be milked?     Will the pigs really fly?     Oh, sorry, pigs flying has nothing to do with the eclipse, hehehe.     Just be careful and think about your eyesight.    How precious is your eyesight to you?
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I just wanted to share a picture of a future project.   I have been seeing a lot of these being made on around the web and I really wanted one too.    A bunch of gals on a private group that I am on have been making them like mad, crazy people (love y'all!!)!!!   hahahaha    They are such a lovely gift idea and I hope to get one made to enter in the county fair this time.     I really need to get cracking!!!   This is the journal on the packaging of the die itself.    There are many many beautiful journals on the internet with some really great tutorials.     Do a google of the die and you can find some decent prices on it.
Yes, you seen it here.   I am gonna try my best to get one made!!!    I hope and pray that I can make a beautiful journal.    I hope I can do Eileen Hull proud, I'm sure gonna try my "best-est" to do just that. 
I already have it started, although I'm not really keen on showing anything yet, but I will.    I may have to scrap it, so I don't want to get too attached to it yet.    Texture is the word!!!    This is the front.    (Sorry about the lights from the overhead light.)
This is the upper back.   I was just trying to show how unevenly painted it is.     It's thick and thin and the color is splotchy.     Just what I was going for.     I don't know how much of this underlayer will show on the finished project and I wanted it really messy.   Texture is the word!!!  Looks like I succeeded, huh!   hahaha
This is the journal opened up, flat out.    You can see the overlap of the spine and the holes for the threads, ribbons or what ever, to hold the signatures in.     There will be a lot of mixed media on the cover for sure.      Texture is word!!!    Ok, enough about texture.    hehehe

I cut this from cereal box chipboard and then I gessoed it after gluing the 2 pieces put together.    I let that dry over night and the next day, I put on a mix of paint that I have had for about 3 years now.     This mix of paint came about from another project where I was painting bottles, all different colors, on the inside and I had to drain the excess paint from the bottles.    I rigged up a container that I could drain the bottles into and then when they were all drained, I had this mix of paint.    Now what?    Do I toss it or use it?    Easy answer, use it!!!    And I have!!!!    I don't mind telling ya, I will be very disappointed when its all gone.     One or two more projects and it will be gone.     It gets thicker and thicker with each project and that's what I love about it so much.     It works wonderfully as a base on my mixed media projects.     So, I have this layer drying, just getting ready to start putting on more and more.     Be on the look out for more of this to show up sometime soon.    (I hope!!)
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Now...for a blast from the past.    When I started thinking about this blog post and what I wanted to share today, I started thinking about some of times we used to go fishing as a family.    All 8 of us would load up and go fishing!!    It was some really good times, until it came time to clean the fish!!!!!    hahahaha       It could be a few hours or even into the late evening cleaning fish.    Daddy would always strap on his pearl handled pistol that was in this really neat looking leather holster.     The belt part of it had loops all around the waist that held about a half a box of shells and then there was a leather strap at the bottom of the gun barrel on the holster that tied around his knee.     Kinda Indiana Jones-ish.     That was always one thing that he made sure he had.     Then, we had all the cane poles and rods and reels, tackle boxes, all different kinds of baits such as worms and minnows  and artificial baits of all kinds and maybe a piece or two of stinky meat (hahaha), and stringers for the ones that wandered off away from the rest of the gang.    Then there were plenty of 5 gallon buckets to hold all the fish and keep them cool and fresh till we got home with them.  

At the time, milk came in the paraffin coated cardboard cartons that some milk still comes in today, I think.      (What I remember about the milk cartons for our part of the country is that they also had coupons for Santa Clause Land Amusement Park up in Indiana on the backs of them.    You could cut those out, save them, and use them to gain entrance and use them for other things once inside the amusement park.)    Mom always saved the gallon sized cartons.     She would wash them out and store them until we had fish or some other meat to put in them because they stacked really well in the freezer, and therefore taking up less space.    They also held enough meat of one kind or another, for a meal.   Once the cleaning of the fish started, I was the fish runner.    The guys would be outside cleaning the fish.     Once they got a pan full, I would run that pan in to mom and she would start washing them and making sure all scales was gone and packaging them and I would run another pan out to the guys.    This carried on for for as long as it took, but with everyone helping, we got the job done.    When it was all said and done, we would have several gallon sized boxes of fish to put in the freezer and enjoy later on.    Two or three fishing trips like this in the summer kept us in fish all the rest of the year, until we got to go fishing again the next summer.   Mom would put as many fish in each box as she could, then she would fill the empty space around the fish in the box with water.    That kept freezer burn off the fish.     So, if we was gonna have fish for supper, she would set a box out of the freezer first thing of the morning and let it thaw and then the magic happened!!!    My mom is the best fish fryer there is!!!    hahaha     There would be a platter of fish on the table that was mounded so high, that I don't know how they stayed on there!!      Oh my gosh, they were the best things I ever ate!!!  I wish I had some of her fish now.     Next time I go see her, I may have to get her to fry me up a fish.    She would too, if I bring her the fish.    hahaha  

The meal with fish would usually consist of her delicious great northern or pinto beans, cooked to perfection, stewed potatoes seasoned with black pepper, 2 cornbread pones cooked in cast iron skillets and lots of onion.    That, my friend, was a meal that my family was more than thrilled to sit down too, any day, anytime!!!!      Very few scraps was left from this kind of meal.    The dogs didn't get to eat very well on a night like this, because there wasn't many scraps and you couldn't feed the fish bones to dogs.    The cats got to clean up the fish bones.    The dogs were used for hunting, so we fed them well.   They ate what we ate plus some dog food for nights like the night I just described.    They didn't like dog food though, they preferred the food we ate.    hahaha     Spoiled dogs!!  hahahah
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I have a new tip for y'all today.    I want to explain a little bit about it first.    When I started adding a tip to each post at the beginning of the year, I had no idea which direction it would take.     I was thinking crafts and then it quickly took a turn, (not saying I won't be adding crafty tips along the way, but for now, this is what it is.)    Then again, I had no idea what my word for the year would bring either.     My word for the year was and is "DREAM".     Not my dreams for me, but God's dreams for me.     His dream for me has taken me on the quest to get healthy and try to finish my days of life left on this planet serving Him in as healthy a body as I can have, with His help.       So with exercise and trying to eat a bit more healthfully, it is taking me on a journey.     I hope that some of y'all are following me on this journey.       A weight loss of 5 to 7% of overall body weight, moderate exercise for 150 minutes a week, and journaling every bite I have eaten has been the way to get me started on this healthy journey.     This is the guide lines that I was taught on my weekend taking the PT2 crash course to be a Life Style Change Coach.      I had started with some of this before I went to the PT2 training, I just didn't know it.

This year I have been watching documentaries on Netflix about the food industry, the medical industry and trying to find out more in general about getting my body healthy.    Netflix has probably got 10 or more really good documentaries that are free to watch.    About all the GMO's (genetically modified organisms) and antibiotics and other crap (technical term, grin) in our meats and grain.    So, search them out and see what you can come up with.    (((And, just as an aside, the health industry does not want us healthy.   They want to keep us sick, because there is not a continuous source of income from healthy people.    They love treating each and every symptom, not getting at the root cause of the illness.    Think about that.)))   You can find some of them on You Tube also.    In the process of all this, it has led me to some interesting websites.     I am not advocating for anyone to go vegan or vegetarian.     I'll tell you why.     I shared in the section above why and it's because I was raised in a household that hunted and fished to have meat on the table.     We was taught that "if you can't eat it, don't kill it, and don't kill it if you can't eat it", unless it was gonna harm you, ie, fox, coyote, snakes or a rabid animal.     So, we grew up eating game meat; rabbits, squirrels, deer, quail, partridges, dove, frog legs, the occasional soft shelled turtle and other animals that my dad and brothers killed and fish we caught with our own fishing poles.    We raised our own beef for many years.   My grandparents raised their own pork.    They also raised their own chickens.
 
We got to see all the processing that took place at home, on the farm.   It's a much different form of processing taking place in the meat processing plants these days.    We had some of the best meat that you can ever put in your bodies.     Free range meat is all there was back then!!!     Who knew???   We had no idea what the future was gonna hold for the food industry, but just like everything else that man gets their hands on, it becomes a nightmare.       My opinion is that the food that we had back 50 years ago was much better for us.     Number 1, it wasn't processed with all the crap (technical term, grin) that's in the meat today.    No added hormones and no added antibiotics.     No genetically modified beans and corn was in their diets, therefore ultimately, not being a part of our diets.    Number 2, my mother put a lot of love and forethought in the way she prepared our meals.     Meat was not the main dish of our meals.      Beans and potatoes and corn bread was the mainstay in our house along with the seasonal veggies and fruits from the garden or the freezer after mom had processed them herself.     Meaning that we ate mostly vegetables and some meat.      Fast forward to 2017 and meat is the main focus of any meal and its processed with crap (again, my technical term, grin) in it that was never meant for human consumption.      It's the processing of our meats that is making it deadly to our bodies, all the preservatives and nitrates and nitrites and other stuff I can't spell much less pronounce.    It is the processing or should I say, overprocessing of grain that is making it deadly to our bodies and the same with the veggies we eat.    All the fiber being processed out of grain and all the sugars we are consuming without knowing we are consuming so much.    Not to mention everything that is being made with genetically modified corn and beans that is in just about everything we eat today!!!!!      You know what gets me?     I noticed in Sunday's coupons in the paper that they are now making dog and cat food WITHOUT genetically modified organisms or "gmo's".    They don't want you feeding this to the pets, but it's ok for your children to eat the crap!!!!!     What do you think about that???

I am "now" concerned about what I am putting into my body.      The reason I say "now", is that it's better late than never.      I don't know how this is all gonna pan out for me in the long run, but I am trying to eat more healthfully and purposefully.      Back years ago, my husband and I used to travel a lot and for the life of me I can't remember where we went, but I do remember all the foods associated with the good trips!!!!    Every trip, I associated with the meals eaten, not the sights seen.    How sick is that?!?!      hahaha     Who cares where we went, the food was good!!!!      And you know what, the food was good to my taste buds, but it wasn't good to my body and I am now dealing with the consequences.     A couple of sayings come to mind.   One is, "all things in moderation".    How's that working for me?     I wouldn't say that to an alcoholic or drug addict, so I'm not gonna say that to myself anymore.     Another one is, "eat to live, not live to eat".     This is one saying that I am gonna try to put into practice.     For so long, I lived to eat.     I love the flavors of food, I do, I can't help it.    Come to find out, it's not the flavors of food that I loved, it's all the addictive additives that was in the food.    Now, I can honestly say that I do love the fresh real flavors of real food.     

With all that said and the journey I am now on, comes my tip.     On the left hand side of my blog under "places I shop" is a new category I called "Healthy Eats".     These are some places that was mentioned in some of the documentaries that I watched and some are just places that I have found on my own and wanted to save for myself and I thought I would add them here for all of us to take advantage of.   There are lots of recipes and how to add more healthy veggies to our diets and how to make healthy sauces that are void of animal byproducts.     There are some though, that I can't add.     For some odd reason I can't make it a clickable link in the column under "Healthy Eats" (it turns into gobble-dee-gook that is unintelligible, another technical term) , so I'll have to add those in blog posts and hopefully figure out how to put them all in one place.     A couple of those places that I couldn't add to my list is www.plantplate.com, once there, check out the recipe list and also https://nutritionfacts.org/.    These are some really good places to get great info.    I tried to put these in my list, but as I said, I couldn't.    I said earlier, I am not advocating going vegan or vegetarian at all, but this next place is a good place to look at some of the alternatives for meals and what can be eaten at a very low cost, so that's why I'm sharing this one, https://rawvana.com/vegan-meal-prep-1-50-day/.    This one also has the you tube video that goes along with it to show how to prep the food.    Also, at the bottom of the page on Forks over Knives, (this one is listed) look for the newsletter archives,    There are a lot of recipes in that area.

I will say this about the places I have listed.     I am not responsible for the adverts that may pop up on the websites and the other content on these sites.   There was a place or two that had some questionable ads and I did not even post them, simply because I don't want y'all to think that I advocate for some of the garbage that they was taking a stand for.    I advocate for healthy food for healthy bodies so we can use them in the service of our Lord and Savior, that's it.    No hidden agenda.    I am just trying to be my own advocate for myself and learning to make better choices for me.    I do believe in taking care of what the Lord has blessed us with, His planet.    God made everything He made to be useful to man, even animals as a source of food.    The Bible has all that info in there, so read it to find out what God says.    If I do decide to give up meat all together, it will because God has directed me to do so, but for now, I am still enjoying meats, just less of it.    If you choose to give up meats, it's because you made the choice for yourself.   (Although, watching some of the documentaries is enough to turn a weak stomached person off of meat for good.)    

So, if you are trying to get a bit more healthy, feel free to check out the websites that I have listed under "Healthy Eats".     If you have a place that should be added, than add it in the comments below, and once I have approved the comment, we can all have access to it then.     I hope and pray that this will be a blessing and some useful info for all of us on our journey to get healthy.     We'll do it together!   Yay!!!!!
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Well, that's about it for today.    I have exercise class after while and will be heading off to it.    But when I get back home, I hope to work a little bit more on my Eileen Hull journal.    Come back soon for an update on that.    I hope where ever y'all are that today is a most lovely day for you.    I hope you have some good memories of fishing in your memory bank. Also some good memories of enjoying the catch later.   Yeah!!!!    Take the dare today to start eating to live and not living to eat. Savor every healthy bite of food you put in your mouth.    Check out some of the places I listed to help you get started and to give you some good healthy suggestions.    If you have any suggestions for us on the places for healthy advice with our meal preps, please let me know.     I do love hearing from y'all and reading your comments.    Start a fun project today.    Do something just for you today, that will make you appreciate this moment in time.   Tell someone you know that Jesus loves them and is waiting to hear from them.     And take care of your eyes, they are the only ones you have!     God loves y'all and so do I!!!     Till next time, hugs and love!!!!    Patty

Saturday, July 29, 2017

THE Key, Another Peeve and Another Project and a Tip

Good afternoon Y'all!!!    I hope this post finds everyone cool and refreshed.  I really do.    It has been so hot in my neck of the woods that I have been afraid of spontaneous combustion!!!!    hahahaha    Well, I don't think I'm really gonna do that, but I have been known to stick my head in a freezer for a second or two.    hahahaha    Hey, I shop at Aldis, so I can hold the door open a second or two longer than necessary at the frozen veggies!    Well, I don't do it all time, so that counts for something, doesn't it?    So, I make a game out of it.    Ok, here's what I do.    When it's really hot, I mean really really hot, I can actually hit Wal Mart, Kroger, HG Hills, Sav-A-Lot, Aldi and 3 or 4 Dollar General Stores...............and by the time I try out all the freezers, it's cooled off enough outside that I can then go home.    I just tell people that I'm studying all the frozen foods in all the stores.    Someone even suggested that it was one heck of a test that I was studying for.     bada bing bada boom      hahahahaha        Ok, so that's NOT true.      I was just pulling y'alls legs.    But I am starting to think it sounds like a pretty good plan.    If anyone tries it, report back here on how it works for you, ok.      But.....if you get in trouble, don't blame me, ok.     hahahaha
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In my last post I shared a pic of a "work in progress".    I am happy to share that I have it completed and really like the outcome.    I find that I am sticking with mostly the same colors. I can't help it, because they are just so beautiful together that I overlook all the other colors of Viva Decor Inka Gold, but I am gonna try hard to remedy that.    I added the colors hematite and graphite to my stash, so that should make for some great combinations.    I hope so anyway.
 This is one of the earrings.    No two sets are ever alike, that's what I love about these so much.
Even the variations in the same set is fun.      I will point out here again that I do make the ear wires too,
I always notice more in the pictures than I notice when I hold them in my hand.   I see more purple along the bottom and the right side of the necklace.    PURPLE!!!!!!   There, I said it, I got it outta my system.   hahahaha
This is my favorite bracelet to date.    I made it a little larger on purpose, so I can push it up high above my wrist.   It looks nice.
This is my hammered clasp.   I just love making those too.      I did find some oblong jump rings and I love them.    I think they make the bracelets look much nicer.
This is the complete set.     All in all, I'm happy with this.    I hope you are too.    I do have another shape now.     So that will be fun to make another set and at some time, maybe use more than one shape together.      I don't  know.      We'll see.
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Did you know that every key unlocks something?     Well, they should anyway.    Have you ever lost a key?     What do you think about when you hear the word "key"?      Most people would probably think of a lock and then they may even envision one of the many locks available on the market.    Maybe even a house door lock or a car lock or some kind of a latch that locks.      When I think of a key, most of the time I see a skeleton key, I think that's what they were called.     Remember the old key and locks that used to be in old houses.     The ones you could actually see through.     I remember movies when I was a kid where it may be a spooky movie and you could always see a blinking eye through one of the key holes.    I always hoped someone would poke that eye!!!     hahaha     Hey, I sure would have!!!  

Is it safe to say that most locks have a key?    Yes.   Is it safe, then, to say, that most every key unlocks something?      Sure.      I look at my key chain sometimes, and I think to myself that it looks more like a weapon than it does a key chain.     I've even had people ask me if I know what they all go to.    I sure do, it may take a minute or two to name them all, but I know what they are all for.   I do have a lot of keys on my key chain, but every one of them locks and unlocks different things.       And, by the way, I CAN use my key chain as a weapon, if necessary.    hahaha      Really, I could and would in  a heartbeat, if need be.

So, why all the fuss about keys?   We may leave home without a key sometime, but, there is one key that you don't want to leave this life without.      There are a lot of misconceptions out there about there being many ways or many doors to God, the Father, but.....that is a lie straight from hell.     There is only one Key that will open the door to the Father and that key is Jesus Christ.

John 14:6  Jesus answered "I am the way and the truth and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through Me."

Sounds like a key to me, doesn't it sound like one to you?     There are not many doors to our Father,  as some suggests, there is only One.   How many remember the fun game show, "Let's Make a Deal"?   At the end of the show, there was 3 curtains or doors to choose from.    Choose the right door and you won the grand deal of the day, choose the wrong door and you may get a bale of hay or some rotten eggs.   Well, our Father made the choice real simple.    There is only one key to His door and that is His son.   You choose this key and you get an eternity with the Father and His Son.    The key IS Jesus!    Jesus was talking to His disciples when He made the statement above.    He went on to say that if you have seen Me, you have seen My Father.   The radical thing is this.   After we place our faith and trust in Christ and have accepted Him as our Savior and "Key" to the Father, our Father does not see us in our weakness of humanity, He see us in the strength of His Son!!    Because He sees the shed blood of Christ over us, covering our sins and blotting out our failures.    Do you have this key?    Have you found this key yet?    Don't be lied to by the enemy.    Jesus is that key that you are searching for.     You are the only one that can open the door of your heart to Him.    Jesus is the only key that will unlock the gates of heaven.    Oh my dear friend, I hope and pray that you have found THE key, Jesus.    And I mentioned earlier about losing keys.   Well, you don't ever have to worry about losing this Key!    Once you find Jesus, He won't ever be lost from you.

I hope and pray that every time you look at your keys that you pack on a daily basis, that you will be reminded of the BEST key of all!!    Jesus Christ!!!!!      Do you know Him today?    I sure hope so!!

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Today, I have another pet peeve day.     I have recently noticed some of the ads that pop up on web sites and email and things like that.     The one that stands out, is the one that says "don't stop roe" placed by planned parenthood.   This is my opinion, and my opinion only.   So, you don't have to read any further if you choose not too, but this is my opinion.    I do get to have my opinion on my blog, for now anyway.     I don't want my tax dollars going to fund the murder of the innocent.     I will not, knowingly, support an organization that supports planned parenthood or roe v wade.   Since 1973 the United States has successfully killed close to 59 million people, probably more by now, and done it legally, mind you.   Do your homework, google it out.   Roe V Wade, the law that was passed making it legal to kill human beings, is based on a LIE!!!!    YES it is!!!!    The woman that caused this in the first place, has since become a Christian, and admitted that it was all a lie, and that she had been cheating on her husband and got pregnant.     She has gone to the courts and told them that it was a lie.   So, we now have a law on the books, based on a LIE, saying it's ok to kill people!    What's right about that?   Nothing!!!!!!     We care more about the rights of animals than we do humans.      Lord forgive us!     I am afraid ignorance and turning a blind eye will not be enough to let us off the hook when we stand before our Creator with blood on our hands.     

You will never hear me put down a woman that has had an abortion.    I won't do it!   I refuse to do it! I would never add to her pain and suffering.     A lot of these ladies had no choice in the matter.    A lot of these ladies did not know better at the time.     But I can assure you that these ladies have dealt with a tremendous amount of guilt.   I will not add to that.   To anyone reading this that has had the experience, my heart breaks.    I pray that God will put someone in your path that can help you with healing.    If you are one those ladies that has found healing, praise GOD and I hope that you pass it on to another lady that needs healing too.    My prayer is that someday, someday soon, all the women that have been victim of the law that says it's ok to kill, would rise up and claim victory through the blood of Christ, and demand a change.   I pray for them to rise up in unity and when they do, they will have many more supporters to join them in pressing for change.     Don't tell me one person can't cause a change to come about.    There is power in "one". One person caused prayer to be taken from schools and elsewhere.        One person caused a law based on a lie to kill millions of people.    One person made a choice to lay her life on the line for the lineage of the Jewish nation.   One person stepped up to lead the Exodus.     ONE person died on a cross to SAVE us from our sinfulness, Jesus Christ!   

Lord, forgive us all for not standing up and speaking out against the atrocities that's happening around us on a daily basis.     Father, forgive us when we let things happen.      Father, forgive us when we cause things to happen.      Forgive those that take advantage of us.      Father, forgive us for not claiming our part of the blame.     Forgive us for placing our blame and fault on others.     Open our eyes so we can see that keeping silent is giving our consent to the situation.     Father, give us courage to stand up, step out, and support change that will bring people to Your saving knowledge.     Help us to live, daily, as your humble servants, stepping in the gap for those that have no voice.     Help us in the days to come to do the right thing.     It may be tough, and it may be hard, but You haven't called us to do the easy thing, You've called us to do the "right" thing, the "hard" thing.     Thank you Father, for what I know You will do in the coming days.     Amen and Amen
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Ok, so my tip this time is not anything new.   It's more of a reminder, I guess, but I'll still call it my tip because I have to remind myself to do it.    One of the things I love to do is have lots of fresh fruits and veggies on hand.   I have to remember when I get home to go ahead and prep the fruits and veggies right then and there.    It makes it easier to grab a handful of something and keeps me from grabbing something else that I don't need to be eating.    So, make bell pepper sticks, celery sticks, carrot sticks as soon as you get home and then they are very easy and ready to use.   Wash radishes and grapes and cherries and tomatoes and you are good to go.   It also makes it easier for others in the house to eat and snack on foods that's a little healthier.    It does take a few minutes on the front end, but from then on, they are good to enjoy on the go.
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Well that's just about it for today.   I hope and pray that you enjoy the rest of your day and that you come up with your own unique way to stay cool.   hahaha    I hope that you get to do something crafty and fun today.    I hope that every time you look at your keys that you are reminded of Jesus Christ, the door to the Father.     I hope that you will do something good for someone today, just because you can.     Because one person can make a difference.     And I hope you have some fresh fruits and veggies already prepped and ready to nosh on at the whim.     Yum!!!     Tell someone you know that Jesus loves them.   To be honest, we can never hear that too often.    We need to hear it and believe it, because it's true.  

I hope you find yourself right back here real soon.    Until then, remember that God loves you and wants to hear from you.    I love ya too, see ya soon!    hugs and love, Patty

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Work in Progress, Living your Greatest Sermon, Spiced up tip, and Continued Dreaming

Good morning y'all!!!    It has been a rainy July so far and nothing would indicate that it's gonna change any time soon.     It just stays so humid and sticky and then one minute the sun is shining and then the next it's raining, and then it will be raining with the sun shining.     Years ago on the popular night time soap, Dallas, Sue Ellen Ewing would say, "I'm so confused!"      She would always say that and I would crack up.     Well,,,,,I thinks the weather is "so confused:!     hahahaha       Oh well, I'll not complain too much, it could turn off hot and dry and then we would be in a pickle.     I'll just learn to take what ever the day brings and just be so happy to be a part of it.     That's my action plan.      I know there has been lots of damage in other parts from all the storms rolling through, so we can take wet any time and be happy that's all it is.  
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Ok, so I have a teaser for y'all today.     I have been busy with other things and haven't been doing much crafting or jewelry making, but I do have a work in progress and I wanted you to see thus far.
I think I had mentioned getting a die from ebay that was graduated size of squares, this is the cut pieces all stacked and glued, ready for me to get my inca rubs out.    I have to say that I'm not really happy with the die.     I don't know why, but the squares are not perfectly square and that is VERY irritating to me.     When I started trying to stack them, that's when I seen how off square they really are.     It was one of the red steel rule dies.     I wish I could find the same thing in the newer steel rule dies, it might be more perfectly square, but I don't think they even make that, so I guess I am stuck with having to trim them to my liking.    uugghhhh      But, I am pretty confident that I can turn this into something that I will be happy with.  

The reason I like the steel rule dies for making this type of jewelry is because I can adhere 3 layers of chipboard together and the steel rule die will cut it nicely.     If I just use a single layer of chipboard and a thin die, then I have to spend tons of time cutting and trying to glue the layers perfectly, and that is soooo hard for me to do.     I may go ahead and try it again though with some of the different shapes that I already have in the thin dies and see how I can manage that.    Well, there you have it, my sneak peak, so stay tuned for more jewelry adventures.
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My one word for the year was "dream".     I said then that it was not my dream, but God's dream for me.     I had no idea what this year would look like for me.      There was no way I could even put anything on a dream board either.     Nothing was clear or in focus.      Just minute by minute is the way I have lived this year so far.     And I must say that there have been some pretty amazing (to me) minutes so far.      God has blessed me in a much different way than I could have imagined or dreamed.   I am so thankful and blessed for sure.     One of my dreams was to try to get healthier this year.     The last couple of years with an achilles tendon injury has taken its toll on me, so with that 97.999% better, I started exercising and got a fit bit and started eating better and slowly but surely, my health, I believe, is getting better.     I didn't get unhealthy over night and I won't get healthy over night either.    It's one step, one bite, one movement, one breath at time.     Living with a purpose!     Living with the mindset, that God created me for a purpose.    

Well, one event after another led to me meeting the right person at the right time!     Isn't God awesome like that!!!     Oh yes, He sure is!!!     God set my path to meet this wonderful woman at the hospital.     After talking with her at length, just about what has brought me to this juncture in my life, she looked at me and said, "I think you would make a great coach, a great lifestyle coach."     I was really speechless!    I know, right, that's really hard to believe, isn't it!!!    hahahaha      Here I am, struggling for my life and she thinks I would make a good lifestyle coach.     Go figure.     Immediately, the enemy says, "HAHAHA, you think you can do that?"     The first thing that came to mind was, "not in my strength, but I can do all things thru Christ who strengthens me."      She started telling me about what the lifestyle coach does.      Basically it is being a class facilitator, or leader in helping people that have been diagnosed as "pre-diabetic" to get active, change eating habits and achieve sustainable weight loss  to prevent or at least delay full blown diabetes.    

With her asking me if I wanted to do that, came the opportunity to go to the 2 day training event that took place the last Friday and Saturday in June.     It was, without a doubt, the most intense and tense 2 days I have experienced in a long while.     I was in this training with doctors, professors and high level upper health care management!!!     I was the only "hick from the sticks".    hahaha      I was!   Out of 18 participants, I was the only person there that didn't have a bunch a letters strung together at the end of my name.     I was also the oldest person in class.   We had to introduce ourselves and tell a bit about us and why we were there.      I told them my name, and that I didn't have a bunch of letters at the end of my name, but that I had gotten my masters from the "University of Hard Knocks" and that I decided I wanted to finish well, so now I was working on my doctorate and that I was 20 years old with 38 years of experience under my belt.     The trainer clapped her hands and loved my answer and so did everyone else.     I don't know if they were laughing at me or with me, and it doesn't matter anyway.     What did matter, is that God had brought me there!!!!      It was 2 days with some of the most intense study sessions I have been a part of.     It was a great experience!!!     I am thrilled that I got to do this and at some point I will either be coaching or co-coaching a class for Prevent Type 2 diabetes.     I came home with the curriculum and now the real study starts.

I am happy that I now have the tools to help myself and others to live a stronger, healthier life and I just pray that God blesses any and all efforts that I make in this journey ahead of me.     I said that if I can't help myself, I don't know how in the world I can help others.     I just trust God in this matter.   He seen fit to put me in the right place at the right time, "for such a time as this" and I pray that I can fulfill His dream for me in this endeavor.    "Living with a purpose!"    The days ahead look a little brighter, thanks to Him!
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I have a pet peeve to discuss here for just a few seconds.    I won't bore you too long with this one, but I do want to mention this on here and just hope and pray that I don't have to address it again, ever.    Does anyone of y'all ever have to go through your list of followers and block some of them?    Well, I do.   I have done it twice since the onset of my blog back in 2013.    I first want to say that I am truly honored to have as many followers as I do have.    I don't care who wants to follow my blog, I really don't.    But I just want to say that this is NOT a lonely hearts club!!!    There are many "hook up" sites on the web, you don't have to troll the crafting forums to try to find someone.    If anyone comes to my blog and reads anything at all, I hope they will read the left side bar.    I do tell about being married for 38 years and look forward to the next 38 years with my husband!!!!    Just as an aside, if I wasn't married, I would NOT be looking for someone online!    So, yes, I clean out and block followers that are trolling for women, and you can too.   
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I wanted to share a spiced up tip with y'all today in the form of a recipe.     I love buckwheat pancakes and I always try to have the mix on hands at all times.      The real deal, buckwheat mix will be just a little darker in color than regular pancake mix.     It should be a whole grain mix, just for the healthfulness of it.     We have an Amish Country Store pretty close to us up in a neighboring state and that is where we go to get the buckwheat pancake mix that I like, although the stores around town do carry buckwheat pancake mix and it's good too.    But, at the Amish store they have all kinds of other wonderful mixes, spices, spice blends, cereals....anything you can think of and they have it, just about.     I stay stocked up on the fresh spices and the last time I was up there, I picked up a container of chai spiced tea mix.    I have made several cups of tea and I just love it.    The fragrance of it is so divine!!!     Well, this morning as I was getting ready to fix buckwheat waffles for breakfast, I picked up the chai tea mix also and put about a tablespoon of that in the batter along with almond milk, OMGoshie, that is absolutely, hands down the BEST waffles we have ever eaten!!!!

For the recipe:    Spiced up Buckwheat Pancakes or Waffles

1 cup of buckwheat pancake mix, 
1 heaping tablespoon, or more of chai spiced tea mix, 
1 tablespoon of oil, 
1/4 cup of unsweetened almond milk.

Mix well and pour into preheated waffle iron.    Don't overfill, or it will overflow.     Let it cook till the waffle iron lets you know they are done.      Easy peasy, yet OH SO delicious!!!

I just used a bit of spray parkay on mine and then just a touch of maple syrup, (I generally use locally grown honey on waffles or pancakes, and that is what I will use the next time.)     Oh my, it's so good!!!!     One of the old country sayings that comes to mind is "it was so lip smacking good, I thought my tongue was slap my eyeballs outta my head!"    hahahaha      Hubby thought they were pretty scrumptious also, so these will be on my "go to" list for sure.     I hope you try this and let me know how you and your family liked them.

The spiced chai tea mix is also good in oats. Oh yeah!!!    
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I heard it said one time that "the greatest sermons aren't preached, they are lived".     My prayer is this, "Lord, help me live my life in such a way that is honoring to the call you have placed on my life. May my life be a sermon well lived."    

Sometimes in the day to day struggles of life, we forget that others may be watching and listening closely to our lives.     Some people do watch and listen just to SEE when we fall.     But there are "learners" out there that are just trying to do the best they can and they do watch us, so they can learn from us.     We ARE the only Jesus that some will ever see.      So, my hearts desire is that when someone looks at me, they see Jesus, not the sack of bones that I carry around in the form of my body.      I truly want to be the hands of love and compassion that reach out to the unloved and hurting world around me.      I'm not always successful at it though.      I just keep praying on a daily basis that God will help me one more day to try and get it right "today, this day".

I used to be of the mindset that it did not matter how I lived my life.    Being young and ignorant can cause us to think a lot of things that aren't right.     But upon more study of the Word of God, I found myself having to change that thought.     I have even heard people say that you should not live your life based on how others live, and I bought into that, for several years.    More than I even care to admit.      But when I started reading and studying the Word for myself, that's when I started seeing that how I live my life matters not only to Christ, but also to those around me who are searching for Christ.     This is where the saying, "the greatest sermons aren't preached, they are lived" comes into play.

Paul talked about this a lot, actually.  

Philippians 4:9  Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.       

Titus 2:7 In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness.       

1 Thessalonians 1:6  You became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you welcomed the message in the midst of severe suffering with the joy given by the Holy Spirit.

Colossians 3:16 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.

Ephesians 4:11 So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, 12 to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.

Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.  

1 Corinthians 11:1 Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.

How does it make you feel to know that we are to be examples to those around us?     Is my behavior to be imitated?      Do we have a "do as I say, not as I do" mindset?     I don't know about anyone else, but I will have to tell you right about now that I have had to stop and ask myself, "do I really want anyone to imitate me"?     That's not a fun question to have to give an honest answer to.     Don't believe me, then seriously, ask yourself that.  

What are some of the things that we teach those around us, just through our everyday lives?  

-It's ok to be rude, because I don't know you and probably won't ever see you again.
-He gave me too much money back at the checkout, so it's actually mine, right.
-I'll yell at you because I am louder than you, and I'll get away with it.
-I can actually accuse you of lying because I have a government job, and I'm pretty sure you can't get me fired.
-I can lie to you about what I done to your vehicle, and charge more money.
-I can cut in front of you, because I have a bigger vehicle than you, and you will stop.
-She was a lousy waitress and I don't have to leave a tip.
-So what if I knocked your mail box down, your husband can fix it.

These are just a few of the real life scenarios that I have been a part of in some way or another.    The first one happened to us in Georgia a many years ago on vacation.     Have you ever been served greasy coffee?   (gag)  Well, we have.    We still laugh over that one.     The second one happened to me at a Wal Mart in Ky and I didn't realize it till I got home.    It was a significant amount of money and I didn't want that on my head.   I turned around and made the 12 mile drive back to WM in the pouring rain and it took an hour and a half to get the problem worked out, all the while I was being treated like I had stolen something, but through it all, I remained calm and I did not keep the money.   The third one happened recently in a place that something like that should never happen, and with people that you would never expect, again, I remained calm and after speaking my peace over the situation, I left and, sadly, I won't be back.    The fourth one actually happened to me in the local post office.     I can't say that I was calm, but I can say that I didn't "cuss" anyone, or "reach out and touch anyone", both was at the forefront of my mind.    But I did go the USPS website and leave a "wonderful" (NOT) commentary about the local post office.       The fifth one has probably happened to any woman who has ever taken their vehicle in for work to be done and it did happen to me, but my husband to the rescue.   The sixth one actually happened to us on the interstate, being cut off in heavy traffic by a semi truck driver and we had to take the shoulder and then the ditch to keep from being killed by him. The seventh one actually happened in a local restaurant a few weeks ago.       The server was in a really bad mood and we had really bad service and my husband started not to leave a tip, but I encouraged him to, simply because I don't know what was bothering her that day, but something was, I knew she needed some mercy and grace.      The eight one used to happen all the time by our neighbors.   They used our mailbox as the gauge that kept them out of the ditch when backing out of their driveway!!    That's true.     They seen my husband out there on a weekly basis or more, setting up our mailbox and they always acted like they didn't know what was causing it to be knocked over.

You know, I know there are many times that I have not always acted like I should have.     There has been times that I have been rude and obnoxious and there is nothing that can make those instances right.   I guess the best I can say is that I try harder now than ever to live my life based on the scriptures that I posted, knowing that others are watching and listening to see what my reaction to any given situation is gonna be.     We never know when we will have an off day.     I need always, to be ready to pour out an unending amount of grace and mercy to cover any situation I'm in.     If you have never needed grace, you may not understand that statement.     But if you have been in a situation where you yourself have needed grace, then you understand how important it is to be quick to extend grace and mercy, even when we may think the situation doesn't deserve it.    When we are quick to extend grace and mercy, we are planting seeds,     Then that person may begin to wonder what we are all about and ask us why we were kind to them.   They may ask someone else why we were kind to them.   At any rate, they are thinking about the seeds that was planted.     Then Jesus will water those seeds with other people coming along in their lives.  

I have thought about some of the seeds that others have tried to plant in my life too.    Seeds of bitterness, seeds of thinking it's ok to raise your voice with a woman, seeds of stinkin' thinkin', seeds that says I am not good enough, seeds of anger, seeds of fear, seeds of rejection, seeds of failure, seeds that say I have the right to judge a person for having a need, seeds of shame and soooo many more seeds.     Those seeds are straight from the pits of hell!     I don't care who it is that's trying to sow those seeds into your life, they don't have the right to do that, so do not let that garbage fall on the fertile soil in your life!!!!     Let Jesus plant the seeds that He wants your life to produce and I guarantee that your life will yield a bumper crop of great sermons!

"The greatest sermons aren't preached, they are lived".     Again my prayer is this, "Lord, help me live my life in such a way that is honoring to the call you have placed on my life.   May my life be a sermon well lived."      I hope and pray that this is the desire of all our hearts, to be a sermon well lived.     What about you, are you "living your greatest sermon"?    
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Well that's just about it for this morning.     I hope you have a good weather day today.     I hope you make some jewelry, if not, then wear some really pretty jewelry.     I hope you have a God-sized dream that you will let Him bring to fruition in your life.   Think about some of your pet peeves today and see if you can do something about them.     Is your life a great sermon?     If not, why?      I hope and pray that you seen something here today that has made you think twice about something.   If so, then share it with someone.     Tell someone you know that God loves them and wants only the best for them.   I pray that the rest of your day is filled with sunshine and "Son Shine" and blessings beyond measure!

Always remember that God loves y'all, and so do I.     hugs and love, patty

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Jewelry, A Tip, and Mark Your Calendars

Good morning Y'all.     I hope and pray that the sun is shining where ever y'all are.     And even if the sun isn't shining outside, I pray more than anything, that the SON is shining on the inside!     The SON can brighten any situation or circumstance, believe that!     We've had lots of rain here lately and the grass and weeds are growing voraciously!!    We have just about been in the notion of trying to see if we can have  our back yard declared a "wildlife habitat" and just forget mowing!   hahahaha     I don't know if that would work or not, but it might be fun to see if we could.     Then all the homes in town would be declaring the same thing of their back yards.     Oh shucks, no matter how good the plans, something always spoils it!!!!!   hahahaha     Oh well, I tried anyway.   
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I just wanted to share with y'all, that a friend of mine is teaching classes in Hobby Lobby!!!   Yay , woop woop,  hooray!!!!    Her name is +Heather Kraafter  from the Kraaft Shaak.    She is a wonderful artist, teacher, mentor and friend.    She also has a heart that's on fire for the Lord!!!    I have to believe that the powers that be at Hobby Lobby seen and recognized that.    She is out west, so I would like to request that if you live in her area or are in her area any time, to pay the local Hobby Lobby a visit and see if she is scheduled to be there any time soon.    She will also be traveling to different Hobby Lobby's throughout her area with the plans of branching out even further and hopefully be coming to a Hobby Lobby near you some day soon!!!!!    Heather does have a calendar of events over at the Kraaft Shaak, so check that out and support a wonderful, talented lady.    I hope and pray that someday I get to give this lady a big hug!!!!    So, if you meet her in person before I do, then give her a hug for me, would ya?    https://kraaftshaak.com/events-schedule/      Heather, I pray for this to be an awesome adventure for you and your family.
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I have a couple more jewelry sets that I want to share with y'all today.      You may get tired of seeing them, but I haven't gotten tired of making them yet, so till then, I guess I will keep sharing them.     I did use my cropodile this time to set some eyelets in all the holes I punched to attach jewelry findings to, and I really do love that look.    For both of the bracelets I used long flatish jump rings to join them and I LOVE that!!!    I hope I can find some more of those.     Actually, they weren't really jump rings, it was a necklace chain that I never wore, I got the necklace for the parrot that was on it and I had turned it into a pin, so the chain was in jewelry findings and I used that for my bracelet links.     Anyway, this is the pictures of the two sets I made.
For the first set, I used turquoise shell chips.    I also used turquoise, purple and copper viva decor inka gold rubs. 
For the earrings, I used the next to the smallest oval and then punched the center out with the smallest oval to make an open earring.   I love that a whole lot. 
The oval links really helps the bracelet lay flat and I hope I can find another necklace chain with the oval links.     The clasp is shaped and hammered.     I really enjoy making those too.
I think the copper really allows the turquoise chips to shine.      I was really proud of these sets of jewelry. 
This set has purple, turquoise and copper viva decor inka gold rubs.     The colors are put on in different layers to the first set, same colors, just different layering.  It also features the ecru shell chips.
 These two sets are made from 3 layers of chipboard adhered together with 3L adhesive sheets.     It could also be done by using a xyron machine or just plain glue.
The clasp on the one was a bit longer and I like varying the sizes of them. 
I am happy to report that I donated these to a local fundraiser for the silent auction and they did sell!!
Yay!!!     I don't have any idea how much they brought, I was just thrilled that they sold!!!     I hope to be able to vary the shapes of them soon.     I have a "squares" die ordered from ebay that will be here soon and I am looking at other shapes too.     So, I should have a variety of shapes and sizes before long.   Yay!!!!
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What is the one thing you need most in this life?     Have you ever thought of what some of the vital requirements for life are?      Clean air, clean water and healthy food are the top 3 things that pop into my mind.     Then jobs that will pay the bills, shelter, clothes, medical care, transportation, and what else?     Maybe a good hobby to occupy your hands and mind.     Some people have green thumbs, me, I have brown thumbs. Everything I touch turns brown and dies, I can even kill an artificial plant. hahaha    That just has to be sad, doesn't it.     Lots of people are into photography, physical fitness and some are into fancy cooking, lots of people I know are into crafting of all kinds.     Some people like to work on cars and restore them, people spend time hunting and fishing, mountain climbing and just doing all sorts of things for recreation purposes.     The list just goes on and on of things that people love to do to satisfy their desires to be active and purposeful in their lives.

When I started contemplating all of this, my mind just seemed to keep turning to Jesus Christ.     After much consideration, I decided that Jesus Christ really has to be at the top of my list.     Why, you ask?     Well, Scripture tells us that Jesus Christ is God in the flesh.    Knowing that Jesus is God, He was present when everything that exists was spoken into existence.    If I know anything about God at all, it is this.   God is NOT the author of confusion.     God is orderly.     He created the universe in an orderly fashion.    God created man last.    Why did He not create man first?    Because God had a plan for man and He set out creating the universe and all that is in it in an orderly fashion. He got the earth and all that was on it created in the fashion and manner that would be best for man to thrive in.     If you go back and look at creation, you will see that God enjoyed His time in the garden with Adam, just walking in the cool of the day with him.     Can you even begin to imagine how wonderful it would be to walk with God in the cool of the day in the garden?    And I just wonder what the conversation would be about.     Yes, I know that God is all the "omnis"; omnipotence, omniscience and omnipresent.

In Greek, "omni" means "all".   Omnipotence is "all ruling", all powerful.     When we refer to God as "Almighty", we are expressing our belief that He has ownership and authority over all His creation.     God didn't create the earth and all that is in it and walk away from it.    He has been present with His creation from the beginning and will remain with His creation to the very end.

Omniscience means all knowing.    Everything that has ever been known, God knows it.    Everything that is known now about anything, God knows is.    Everything that is to be known in the future, God already knows it.    When I think about all that He knows, I realize I don't know anything!!!!    What about you, what do you know?    God knows what is in our hearts at all times.     He knows each and every one of us deeply, even better than we know ourselves.  

Omnipresent means being everywhere at the same time.   Is there anywhere at all that you can go that is away from where God is?     And,  I'll throw this in as aside, why would you want to be where God isn't?    But, no, there isn't anywhere in God's vast creation that we can get away from Him.  

Now hear me, I'll be the first one to admit freely and openly that I don't understand all of this, I really don't.     But until my mind can wrap around this completely and understand this fully, I will walk by faith!!!!   Faith tells me that God is omnipotent, omniscience, and omnipresent!!!

So when I think about the things that I need to survive and thrive, I just go back to the top of the list and start off with with Jesus Christ, and then everything else just sorta falls into place.      Because He, Jesus Christ, will meet my most important needs.
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A tip that I have for you today is "activity trackers".      There is a wide variety of brands and styles on the market.     Varying price ranges, makes them affordable for most anyone.      If you are serious about getting active and healthy, then they really are the "beez kneez".      I asked my hubby for one for my birthday.     He said "go for it"!!!!      So I got a "fitbit charge 2" from walmart.     I ordered it from wal mart dot com and picked it up at my local wm.     I had gone to the play store on my android and put the app on my phone and it was ready and waiting for my fitbit to come in.     I picked it up and went to the car and opened the box and less than 2 minutes, I had it on my arm and the rest is history.   hahaha      It tracks everything automatically.      Steps, continuous movement, sleep, resting heart rate, heart rate while exercising, and the type of exercise and more.      If I want it to be specific, when I get ready to start exercise, I can push the button on the side and bring up workout and then set it, when workout is over, push it again to stop it and it has all the stats for that workout period.     I log water intake.   I log every bite I put in my mouth.    It tells me my caloric intake as well as calories burned.     I take it off to clean and charge it when I'm in the shower.    Other than that, I wear it 24/7.     It tells me ten minutes before the hour that I need to get steps in before the hour is over.     Just for the sake of checking others out, I ordered one from ebay that basically does everything the fitbit does, but it was less than 7 dollars and free shipping.     This one is waterproof, you can wear it in the shower or what ever.     I did not dl the app for it and put it on my phone because I didn't want to risk messing up my fitbit tracker.     But, I'm gonna give it to someone that I have in mind.      So, my tip is go to ebay and do a search for activity trackers and look for low price and free shipping and see if you can find one in a price point that matches your needs.    Oh yeah, I have walked almost 200 miles in the last 6 weeks.      It logs how many hours spent exercising, all kinds of neat info.     I certainly give it 2 thumbs up and would give more if I had more thumbs.    hahaha
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Well, that's just about it for this time.     I hope you seen or read something here today that has helped you in some way or sparked a little creative thinking or just made you smile.     If you leave here feeling a bit better than when came, then I consider that a success.     I hope the rest of your day is filled with peace and joy and that you get to spend time with someone you love.     Remember that God loves you and wants to have a relationship with you thru His Son, Jesus Christ.     I love you too and hope to see you back here real soon.    love and hugs, Patty

Monday, May 29, 2017

Pure hearts and pure motives and a couple of Tips

Good afternoon folks.     Here it is, Memorial Day, in the United States of America.     A day set aside to remember the fallen heroes of this country that have given the ultimate sacrifice, their lives, in defense of this country and numerous other countries on the face of this globe.    I hope and pray that if you know someone who has served this great country, that you will take the time to thank them.   We often take the lives of military people for granted.     But we should never do that.    Just take the opportunity to thank a Veteran somewhere today and remember the ones who gave the greatest sacrifice.

In remembering those, remember the sacrifice that was made on the cross for us to have a personal relationship with our Lord and Savior.     Jesus is my ULTIMATE hero!     The sacrifice He made for me was one that no one else could make for me.    For that, I am truly grateful.     Yes, I love the American soldiers, men and women who have fought and died to keep our country free.     But I love more, my Savior, who died to set me free from the bondage and slavery of sin!     Only Jesus Christ could do that!!!
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My tip for this blog post is to use some weights to enhance your "house walking".     I had mentioned that I had started house walking in my last post, well, I have kicked it up a notch since then.    I now walk as fast as I can, thru the house pumping my arms and speed walking like a "cRAZy woman"!!!!   That really gets the heart rate up!!    In turn, burning more calories,  yay!!!!     I do that at least 4 times a day for 15 to 20 minutes at a time.     If I want to, I can just march in place with a really fast pace and watch television while I do that.    If I really want to do that and bump it up another notch, I bring up YouTube and watch Leslie Sansone doing her walking in place.   She has fantastic videos to watch.   There are many to choose from and it's like walking with friends.     You march to the beat of the music and it's great. So, just remember, it is POSSIBLE to get fit in the confines of your own home, you just have to figure out what's gonna work for you.    We just need positive reinforcements and if you will join me in this, we will do it together.     

Another tip in my quest for getting healthy is making better food choices.     Really salty and sweet snacks are my down fall, honestly.      In reality, I just love all the comfort foods!!!!!     You name it, and it's probably on my list of top 10,000 all time fav foods!!!    Hey, I'm just being real here.   hahaha     But I have found that some of the stuff I used to love, I'm not loving them so much.   Number 1 - they sure don't love me, or they wouldn't be so bad for me.     Number 2 - when you start trying to eat healthier, your body starts feeling better.     I LOVE feeling better!!!!!      So, I am trying to introduce new ways of eating some different foods and making healthier choices at the grocery store.      So, my tip is this, I love chips, yes I do.   Guess what else I found out that I love?   I found out that I love to take a green zucchini and slice circles off it as thin as I can get them, (as thin a potato chips) and then use  greek yogurt or hummus or even horseradish sauce as a dipping sauce and it is delicious!!!     With the horseradish sauce, a little goes a long way.     It has a very spicy flavor and that's why I love it so much.    I love LOTS of flavor.   Don't over do it with the horseradish sauce though, it is high in calories and fat.    (Try mixing a teaspoon of horseradish sauce with a tablespoon of plain greek yogurt and you just added more protein to your snack.)   I can slice off, with a mandolin, about two or two and a half inches of zucchini and a couple teaspoons of horseradish sauce, greek yogurt, or hummus and be totally, completely happy and thrilled about my choice and have a filling and satisfying and completely guilt free snack, or a side with a meal.     I hope you find this useful.     I also hope that you will share with me, your NEW, go to favorite, healthy foods.      Stay tuned for more tips, hints and ideas that I pick up along the way.
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Have you ever stopped and thought about how God dealt with the poor and the needy in Scriptures?   I think sometimes, in the greediness of the lives that we all live, we forget that according to God's point of view, ALL of us are poor and needy!!!!     Oh, some of us have a lot of money, and we have a death grip on it to the point of letting the needs of others around us go unmet.     Oh, I know, it's all well and good until it hits home, ain't it?     I have heard it said that church goers are the stingiest, grouchiest, hardest to please, tightfisted tippers that waiters and waitresses ever deal with on Sundays, and you know what, I certainly believe that!  Another thing that I have come to the conclusion of is this, if you need help, don't go to church looking for it, you won't find it.    This is a sad sad thing to say, but it's the truth.    Scripture tells us that we never know when we are in the presence of "angels unaware".     Oh my Lord, may I never be found mistreating one of your angels!!!

One of the things that I have found is that when we have a closed hand, we also have a closed heart.   Just think about that.    It is with our hands that we GET to be that hands of God, when we have open hands for God, we usually have an open heart.    Now, hear this, I am not telling anyone to be careless with what God has blessed them with.   But is it careless to help someone?     Who am I to judge whether someone is telling me the truth about their needs?     If I give to someone who has said they have a need and they use the money for anything other than meeting that need, it's on their conscious and head, especially if I have given it in the name of Jesus Christ, my Lord, Savior and Messiah.

One of the questions that I often hear is "Why does the body of Christ, the believers , the members of this or that church, not want to spend time with one another in a socializing setting?"    The bigger question is this, "Why WOULD they want to spend time with each other, if they are gonna be cut down at every turn?"     The early churches in the book of Acts had it right, for a while anyway.   They did socialize, they did help one another, they did meet each others needs, they did as scripture had told them.   What scripture was that?    The books of the Torah and of the prophets.     Jesus summed all 613 laws written in the Torah, down to just two.    Easy and simple to remember.    Love God with all your heart, mind, soul and strength and love others as you love yourself.   This is my paraphrase, but it's the gist of what He said.     I said that to say this.    God forbid anyone coming to the church with a need or even a church member having a need, more than likely they will be scourned if they are courageous enough ask for help.    

We hear sermons and Sunday School lessons about helping others, and what I see in churches these days is that there is the same old stinkin' legalism that is choking the life out of the church that was there in some of the early churches.   Let me put that in a different way.    Legalism is killing the local churches.     If you wonder where the local churches are, they are the churches in the communities of anyone reading this.   Right where you are, there are several local churches.     Makes no difference whether it's a big church or a small church, legalism is in it!   And if I have my finger on the pulse of what's happening, I would be willing to say that the churches in your communities are killing themselves from the inside with  legalism too.     It is a disease that has been in the churches from very early on.      God has always wanted a people with His heartbeat.     Jesus came to earth to be a model of how we should represent God.     Oh, we all know how to turn on the charm and smiles and pretend like we care, but.........DO WE?     When it comes to tapping into the wallet, that's where the rubber meets the road and where we see skid marks from most people getting away from anyone with a monetary need.    That is so sad.     I just have to say here, that yes, it does take some discernment from the Lord on how to meet some of the needs we may encounter.     And sometimes, the Lord may give you the inner knowledge to step away from the situation.    That has happened to my husband and me on several occasions.     I don't trust myself to do the right thing, but I always trust the Holy Spirit in me to do the right thing.   

Oh yes, I know that drug addicts and alcoholics are always hitting people up for money all the time, and that's not what I am necessarily talking about.     I have heard it said that if a person really has a need, they will not go into a "spiel", if you will, about why they need money.     I laugh at that statement.   Let me walk up to you say that I need some help.     What are you going to say?     Are you going to ask me how I need help?     Are you going to ask me what I need money for?     Sure you are.     Are you going to judge me and condemn me as a liar and a thief and cheat, just because I asked you for help?    Probably, but hopefully not.     That is such a sad thing to say, but it is the truth.

In my search for how God has tried to teach us how to treat people in need, this is just a dent in the heap of info that God has spoken, Himself, in His Word to us:

Prov. 19:17  Whoever is generous to the poor lends to the LORD, and He will repay him for his deed.

Acts 20:35  I have shown you in every way, by laboring like this, that you must support the weak. And remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’

Isaiah 58:10 If you extend your soul to the hungry and satisfy the afflicted soul, then your light shall dawn in the darkness, and your darkness shall be as the noonday.

Deuteronomy 15:7-11 “If there is among you a poor man of your brethren, within any of the gates in your land which the Lord your God is giving you, you shall not harden your heart nor shut your hand from your poor brother, 8 but you shall open your hand wide to him and willingly lend him sufficient for his need, whatever he needs. 9 Beware lest there be a wicked thought in your heart, saying, ‘The seventh year, the year of release, is at hand,’ and your eye be evil against your poor brother and you give him nothing, and he cry out to the Lord against you, and it become sin among you. 10 You shall surely give to him, and your heart should not be grieved when you give to him, because for this thing the Lord your God will bless you in all your works and in all to which you put your hand. 11 For the poor will never cease from the land; therefore I command you, saying, ‘You shall open your hand wide to your brother, to your poor and your needy, in your land.’

Proverbs 28:27 Whoever gives to the poor will not want, but he who hides his eyes will get many a curse.

Matthew 6:1-4 1 Take heed that you do not do your charitable deeds before men, to be seen by them. Otherwise you have no reward from your Father in heaven. 2 Therefore, when you do a charitable deed, do not sound a trumpet before you as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory from men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward. 3 But when you do a charitable deed, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4 that your charitable deed may be in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will Himself reward you openly.

Proverbs 21:13 Whoever closes his ear to the cry of the poor will himself call out and not be answered.

Ezekiel 16:49  Behold, this was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had pride, excess of food, and prosperous ease, but did not aid the poor and needy.

1 John 3:17  But if anyone has the world's goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God's love abide in him?    (pretty good, huh)

Psalm 140:12 I know that the Lord will maintain the cause of the afflicted, and will execute justice for the needy.

Luke 6:38  give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.      (one of my personal favorites)

Proverbs 31:8-9  8 Open your mouth for the mute, for the rights of all who are destitute. 9 Open your mouth, judge righteously, defend the rights of the poor and needy.

Jeremiah 5:28  they have grown fat and sleek. They know no bounds in deeds of evil; they judge not with justice the cause of the fatherless, to make it prosper, and they do not defend the rights of the needy.

2 Corinthians 9:7 Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.

Matthew 25:40 And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’

Hebrews 13:2  Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.      (I pray that I am NEVER found guilty of mistreating an angel, or anyone else)

Hebrews 13:16   Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.

Philippians 2:4 Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.

James 2:15-16  15 If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that?         (wow, how's that for such a statement)

Luke 1:53  he has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich he has sent away empty.

John 3:16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

Well, this is just a short list of how God speaks to us about the poor and needy around us.     I know, those that are more learned than I am can say that I took every one of these scriptures out of context. Did I?   Go back and read the scriptures preceding and following each one, and then say that.     Maybe I did, maybe not.   But one thing I know for sure, there are a lot of slick tongued people that are much better at twisting God's word to suit their needs than I am.    One thing for sure, every scripture came from the mouth God.    And upon closer reading and understanding of these scriptures, we see no where that God accused the poor or needy of anything.    But if you will look at some of these scriptures, God IS judging the hearts and motives of those that could and should be helping others.   

What do YOU own?   Absolutely NOTHING according to God, the Creator and sustainer of everything.    What do you have control over?      Absolutely nothing.     We should have control over the way we treat others, but most of the time we don't exercise that control.    Are you responsible for the good things in your life?    Absolutely not.    Scripture says it rains on the just and the unjust.     The one thing that we are responsible for is being good stewards.  That used to be a word that was heard often in our churches; being good stewards of all that God had seen fit to place in our hands.   When I think of a good steward, you know who I think of?    The little widow in scripture who gave all that she had, for the cause of Christ.   You probably couldn't even buy a candy bar today with all that she gave, but that's not the point.  The point is, she GAVE.   She did not give out of her abundance, she gave sacrificially.   She could have used what she gave, but she knew Christ.   Enough said, she knew Christ.  I can't wait to see her in heaven someday, I want to thank her for setting a good example for me and others that want to serve the Lord, but feel like we don't measure up to those around us.     In the eyes of Christ, she was and is a faithful servant and a good steward of what God had blessed her with.     May we see those actions in and around our churches today.     It's common knowledge, if you don't have much, you don't have much to lose when you give all.     But Scripture makes it very plain, to whom much is given, much is expected.   

I don't know what the quick and easy answer to the problem is, but one thing I know for sure, we ain't handling it very well as a body of believers.    We can say that Scripture is inerrant, but....do we really believe it?     Do I really need to go and sit in a conference and listen to a man tell me how I should or should not help people that come to the church or to me as an individual, for help?     I don't think so.  Like I said earlier, I don't trust myself to make good decisions, but I do trust the Holy Spirit in me to help me make good decisions.     Plus, I do read the Word of God and I place that over anything a man can tell me.     The agenda of the Holy Spirit is to glorify God, the agenda of man is to glorify man.     If we believe that scripture is the inerrant Word of God, then He, Himself, has already told us and keeps telling us over and over, how to deal with the poor and needy.     He tells us to help them.    Again I say that nowhere in His Word does it tell me that I have the right to question the motive of someone that asks for help, when they come in church or ask me as a private individual.    And again, I will say that you need to be able to hear what the Holy Spirit is telling you.     He will never lie to you, and He will never have you do the wrong thing!     Sadly, the world around you will perceive what you or I are doing or have done in the name of Christ as wrong.     When they do, that's on their heads, not yours, not mine.     There have been situations where I have gotten out of there as fast as I could, but that goes back to knowing the prompting of the Holy Spirit in my life.    

Back to one of the first statements I made about all of us having been poor and needy at one time or another, and some still are.    I'm not talking about financial wealth right now either, I am talking about a spiritual need that we all have had or still do have.      I'm not talking about "spirituality" as the world talks about it either.     I am speaking of a spiritual need that only Christ can meet.    What if, when you was at the point of accepting Christ as your Savior, someone questioned your need, or your seriousness, or asked what you was gonna do with your salvation, or treated you like it wasn't for you, or said that you wasn't good enough for salvation?    Can you envision God telling you that you don't deserve anything from Him?     I can NOT!     God met me right at the point of my greatest need.    Him meeting my need was not based on me deserving anything, because to be honest with you, I didn't and I don't deserve anything.   You know what, you don't either.    So we can verily say that God doesn't meet our needs based on who we are, but upon who HE is!   

What is the criteria for salvation?     Faith in Christ is the only criteria for salvation.     Faith that He is who He said He is; God in flesh!     Faith that He was born of a virgin.   Faith that He was fully man and fully God.     Faith that He allowed Himself to die on the cross for the sins of ALL.     Faith that on the 3rd day he arose from the grave victoriously over death.     Faith that He walked among His followers for 40 days after His resurrection.   Faith that He ascended into the heavens and is sitting at the right hand of His Father, waiting for His Father to declare, "Now is the time Son, go bring my children home!"     Faith is the ONLY criteria for salvation.    Faith, that says Jesus is enough!

What is the criteria for you and I to help those that have needs?     I listed about 20 or so scriptures to help us determine what the criteria to help others looks like.     And if that isn't enough, there's several hundred more.    You can dig them out pretty easily, just open the Bible and start reading somewhere.  Not one of them mentions anything about hurting them or making them feel ashamed of the situation they find themselves in or doing any kind of harm in any way.     The number one criteria for helping those in need is a pure heart with pure motives.    That's it.     Nothing more.    Nothing less.   Nothing else.     The next time you are faced with this situation, I hope and pray that you feel empowered to listen to the Holy Spirit, even if the church or the people around doesn't want to.     Pure heart and pure motives is the only criteria for helping others.
      
As always, this is a lesson for me.    That's it, me alone.    But, feel free to use it to help you make better choices and decisions based solely on a pure heart with pure motives.    The next time you are faced with helping someone, I hope you will remember that Hebrews says that we never know when we are entertaining angels unaware.    But then again, if the Holy Spirit says get out of the situation, get gone  as quickly as you can.    Don't let anyone else make the decision for you, whether you help someone or not, other then the Holy Spirit.    He will always glorify God.
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Well, that's just about it for today.    Just wanted to share a bit about what I have been studying on and felt the need to share it with y'all.     Again, it's just a lesson for me, but sometimes I know others are dealing with the same issues.   There is nothing new under the sun, so I know if I see this happening,   others are seeing it too.     

Lord, may we be found guilty of having pure hearts with pure motives behind everything we do.    Amen and Amen!

I hope and pray that you read something here today that has touched your life.   If you have, share it someone you know who needs a word of encouragement today.    We are never alone, if we know Christ as Lord and Savior, we always have a friend who sticks closer than a brother.    That too, is scripture.    Christ makes the difference in our lives.     Hug someone today and tell them that its all about Jesus Christ.    They may not have it heard it before.     I hope and pray that you have a blessed rest of the evening and a wonderful night of sweet, energizing rest.     May your tomorrow be filled with an abundance of blessings, to share with those around you.    Always remember that God loves you and so do I.     hugs y'all, Patty