Thursday, February 24, 2011

Thankful Thursday

It's Thursday and the craziness of a packed weekend is quickly approaching. Tonight I'm off to Theology on Tap (if you're a young adult and are up for some good company, great speakers and a little something to drink then you should see if there is a local Theology on Tap for you to attend).

Over the weekend I made this lovely tomato bisque.  It was easy and oh so good on a cold wet evening.  I served it with sour cream, cilantro and grated asiago cheese.  The recipe is from the recent Real Simple magazine, which I love.  If you haven't heard of Real Simple you should check it out.  There are always great recipes, tips on organizing, great articles and, my favorite, product reviews (which iron is the best? which brand/cut of jeans should I really be wearing? which mascara truly stands up to the rigors of a day without clumping/smearing?)

Tomorrow is Friday.  Don't you just love Fridays?  They are so full of possibilities. They signifiy the end to a (hopefully) successful week. The start of the weekend.  I really do love Fridays, but let's not get ahead of ourselves, since it is still Thursday.

At this moment I am thankful for...
(1) The invention of the telephone and being able to hear the voice of loved ones who are far away.

(2) Memorized Prayers. They are so comforting when my brain doesn't want to work or I just can't find the words to say.
(3) Today's media technology. The fact that I can keep informed and even watch videos and view pictures on what is going on around the world is amazing. 
(4) Our leaders. Despite the fact that I may not always agree with them, I am thankful to live in a country where leaders are elected at every level and that there is a system of checks and balances in place...
(5) Tea. Hot or cold it's wonderful.

(6) Stickers. Random I know, but they just make me happy.  I used to collect them when I was little and am still trying to use them up. Add a sticker to the next card/letter you send. It's sure to bring a smile to the recipient.

(7) IT guys. Our Internet was down at work and I am so glad there is someone else I can call to take care of it. Someone who actually knows what they're doing :)

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Love Conquers All

In the craziness of today's world, with protests and earthquakes, budgets and bills, we need to be able to take a step back and look to God. For guidance. For encouragement. For peace of heart and mind. For love. And we need to look at one another as children of God. As brothers and sisters in the same family. Of course we will disagree, we should. Listen to one another, see the beauty in the differences God has created in each of us. My challenge to each of you, and to myself, is to follow the words in the book of Matthew and "Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you" (Matthew 5:44).  Not such an easy thing to do, but love really does conquer all. Pray for peace. Pray for love.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Thankful Thursday and Happy Late Valentine's Day!

What a busy week!  I was so productive last weekend, I know it's amazing, so I have some fun stuff to share with all of you lovelies.  First of all I've been all about whoopie pies for the past, oh year or so, and for Valentine's Day I found this fabulous recipe from Bakerella.  I followed the recipe but then cut the cookies into hearts before filling them.  I think they turned out pretty darn cute (see above :)

Also, I found this other lovely recipe for English muffins over at Tasty Kitchen.  They turned out great as well, I was so proud of myself :)  Of course I had to make an egg and cheese sandwich with them, oh so good!

I got my craft fix as well by making some quick valentine's day cards and now I'm working on a pillow which hopefully will be as cute as the picture in my head.  More of that to come later.  Tuesday I took the day off and went downhill skiing for the first time.  I absolutely loved it, but have been just a little sore for the past few days.  Alright, that's a quick catch-up on me on to what I'm thankful for...

At this moment I am thankful for...
(1) The right to protest and the fact that it can be done peacefully.
(2) Passion.  That is the passion that people have for a cause.  We should all be so passionate.

(3) Love.  I am thankful everyday that I have family and friends that love me and whom I love dearly.

(4) Random phone calls from people I haven't talked to in a while.

(5) A car that runs and starts right away.

(6) My new apartment, that is slowly becoming my own.

(7) Living in a country that I can practice my faith openly and freely.

Friday, February 11, 2011

A Little Bit of Country

I'm a huge music lover.  I listen to just about everything, from oldies to contemporary christian, everything except heavy metal and most rock.  So if you were to go through the presets in my car you'd find a gamat of options, but the majority of those options are country.  Country is one of those genras that people either love or hate, there's not a lot of middle ground.  I love country for a few reasons.  1) I can relate to a lot of the songs.  I grew up in the country and that's where my heart will always be. 2) It's real.  The lyrics are straight forward and cover a range of emotions.  3) There's religion at the root of many of the country songs.  Something you can't find in many of the "pop" songs.
Last night I attended a fabous concert with three great country singers, Lee Brice, Steve Holy and Chuck Wicks (above in the picture).  The guys all sat on stage with their guitars and a back up singer or two (also equiped with a guitar) and just sang.  Those are the concerts I love.  A laid back evening where everyone is having fun.  If you haven't heard of the above guys you should check them out, I am now a huge Lee Brice fan, he was fabulous. 

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Thankful Thursday

I've decided I need something consistant on my blog.  Something I can do each week.  There are a lot of great examples out there like Made By You Monday and 7 Quick Takes Friday, just to name a couple.  I'm going to start Thankful Thursdays, which will hopefully help me to recognize the everyday blessings in my life and remind me to thank the Lord above for all He's given me.  The list could go on and on, but I'm going to do seven.

At this moment I am thankful for...
(1) My Job.

(2) Jillian Michaels and her killer workouts.

(3) A pile of good books just waiting for me to read.

(4) Clean drinking water.

(5) Fun craft blogs that inspire me.

(6) Music.

(7) Living somewhere with all four seasons (even though it's stinkin' cold today).

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Friendship is a Beautiful Thing

Aren't weekends just amazing?  Last weekend was pretty fabulous.  I was blessed to be able to spend it with friends (2 Birthday celebrations and one lovely Super Bowl Party).  It is weekends like this that remind of how blessed I truly am.  When you think of your friendships do you ever sit back and marvel at the circumstances that God brought about to bring you into each other's path?  We may do this with a significant other, but not (at least I haven't) with friendships.  Friendships, like all relationships, take work, they take love, patience and respect.  As I look back on old friendships and think of new ones I thank God for His timing.  He knew exactly who and what I needed at each stage of my life and blessed me with individuals that helped me along my journey.  I am blessed with friends from elementry school through post-college, of all faiths and backgrounds, male and female.  Friends who listen, advise and correct but most of all who love.  Here's to all my friends, near and far, those I've talked to recently and those who I have lost contact with.  Thank you.  You have helped make me who I am today.

"A friend is one who strengthens you with prayers,
blesses you with love and encourages you with hope."

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Moving + Conference = One Crazy Weekend

A lot has happened since my last post.  First of all, I am settled into my new home, a lovely one bedroom apartment with a great kitchen and plenty of room for all my craft stuff.  I am one happy girl.  The craziness of the move took place on Sunday (yes, I know that Sundays are supposed to be a day of rest, but there really was no getting around it, and I didn't move until the afternoon because I taught my very energetic kindergartners in the morning and then went to Mass for a bit of God energy).  It was such a fabulous move, and I'm actually being serious about that.  It was fast, organized, there was pizza, and most importantly, there was a wonderful group of friends that helped out.  As good as I've gotten with this moving thing though, I really hope I don't have to do it again for a while.  I like the idea of being settled, so let me live in my little fantasy world where I'll stay in the apartment I am no in for, oh, at least two year.

So in addition to my move last weekend, I also had the privilege of attending the Women of Christ Conference in West Bend, Wisconsin on Saturday.  Let me just tell you, it was amazing and very much needed.  The speakers were fabulous and included Immaculee Ilibagiza (and to tell you the truth, she's the reason I went.  Have you read her books Left to Tell or Led by Faith? If not you need to!  She is absolutely amazing.), Fr. Larry Richards (who was extremely straightforward and hilarious) and Helen Alvaré (a professor at George Mason University).  And the mast of ceremonies was none other than Vicki Thorn.  It's always great to be surrounded by strong women of faith.  To be encouraged and strengthened.  I do love being Catholic!

I hope you all had a fabulous weekend and I hope you enjoyed at least one snow day amidst this blizzard that has touched most of the country.