Friday, May 31, 2019

A Collection: In the Yard, and In the Kitchen

I absolutely love the season of spring! It's a lovely time of year, and it's a busy time of year! And here I am, on this last day of May, with a short but sweet collection of just a few of the joys of this spring season.

After multiple trips to the nursery stores in the area, we have most all of our seeds and veggie & flower plants purchased! There is nothing quite as fun as planning for and starting up new garden spots! And I'm a lucky gal, with a hubby who has a green thumb! I am slowly learning ... 

And along with the beauty outdoors, there's the beauty of food on the table. This photo shows a new main dish salad recipe that I tried out in May, using bow-tie pasta, bacon, cherry tomatoes, red onion, a bit of pepper, shredded romaine lettuce, and some parsley - mixed together with some ranch salad dressing. A taste of spring!

A brand new cast-iron dutch oven - a wonderful Mother's Day gift from my dear hubby! I love the 6-quart size, and the beauty of this one - and, of course, love how it cooks up food evenly, and also can go from stovetop to oven. I've been using it for a few recipes already, and know it will be used a lot!

It's been awhile since I've made a pie, and so was a joy to prepare this one for Easter Sunday back in April. You can't really go wrong with a pie called "Coconut Cream Meringue Pie". I'll plan to post the recipe sometime in the coming weeks. 

And now, the month of June is right around the corner ... and I'll look forward to sharing some more collections of things that bring me joy in the summer months!

Thursday, May 16, 2019

My Favorite Things

What are your favorite things?

My (in)courage Devotional Bible, my journal, and my planner would have to be high on my list of favorite things. 

And I have quite a collection of these favorite things by this season of my life.

Above (top of pile) is my new planner for May/June: I use a version of bullet-style planners now, two months per notebook. This planner helps me keep my focus on the most important things for each week, each day.

In the middle of the pile (photo above), is my journal. It takes me about four months to fill up a journal. This one will carry me from May through August. My journal is where I connect deeply with God, writing as I am learning from Him, from His Word.

And my (in)courage Devotional Bible is my go-to Bible at this time. I love the extra space on each page to add notes, and I love the beauty of His Word along with the beautiful format of this Bible. His Word is our treasure; where we hear from Him, where we soak in His love and His truth.

These three favorite things hold my heart together, as my heart is filled to overflowing with all that God is teaching me in the quiet, and also in the midst of a busy life. All I do and all I am flows from my heart. It is critical to nurture our hearts.

Above all else, guard your heart,
for everything you do flows from it.
(Proverbs 4:23 NIV)

Let all that I am wait quietly before God,
for my hope is in Him.
(Psalm 62: 5 NLT)

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Preparing the Soil

The start of a new month always calls me to a fresh focus, a new beginning. And in the spring, freshness is everywhere. I love the fresh air, the vibrant hues of green on our trees and in our lawns, the new flower starts, and the touch of color everywhere.

Spring brings new life in our yards, our flower beds, and our veggie gardens ... 

And it all starts
with the soil. We need to
prepare the soil, till up the soil,
add the necessary nutrients
to our garden spots, our planters.

It's the first step. A garden
or a patio planter needs soil,
good soil. Healthy soil will
produce the beautiful blooms, the
fresh homegrown produce.

And in an even deeper way, in the
midst of busy days and full lives,
we do not want to neglect to care
for the soil of our hearts. 
For everything comes from the heart. 

Does my heart feel crowded? 
Am I even able to hear His whispers?
How can I make room for heart-space
this new month, each new day?

Lord, will you work up the soil of
my heart, will you add the necessary
ingredients needed for new growth?
May I make it a priority this spring,
to tend to my heart.

"Let today be a fresh beginning 
to create heart-space so that 
the garden of your life will 
begin to truly flourish." 
(Whispers and Wildflowers)

"Above all else, guard your heart,
for everything you do flows from it."
(Proverbs 4:23 NIV)