This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope. It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every moring: great is thy faithfulness. The Lord is my portion saith my soul: therefore will I hope in him. The Lord is good unto them that wait for Him, to the soul that seeketh him. It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the LORD. Lamentations 3: 21-26

Friday, July 13, 2007

Scripture and Song

When my first baby was born I had what some might consider an odd choice for a lullaby. It was this song based on Lamentations 3: 21-26. It is a verse and song I continue to cling to over nine years later.

This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope. It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every moring: great is thy faithfulness. The Lord is my portion saith my soul: therefore will I hope in him. The Lord is good unto them that wait for Him, to the soul that seeketh him. It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the LORD. Lamentations 3: 21-26

The Steadfast Love of the LORD

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases
His mercies never come to an end
They are new every morning, new every morning
Great is Thy faithfulness, O Lord,
Great is Thy faithfulness

Robert Davidson, (c) 1974,1975 by Celebration.

Sheryl over at Taking the Challenge hosts Faith-Lift Fridays. Join her and all of her friends for some uplifting thoughts to carry you through the weekend

. Updated to add Sheryl is giving the book The Store Keeper's Daughter away. Visit her and put your name in tonight!!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Favorite Ingredients Friday--Healthy Eating Edition--Meatless Manicotti

Meatless Manicotti


2 cups (8 ounces) shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese, divided object
1 (16-ounce) carton fat-free cottage cheese object
1 (10-ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed, drained, and squeezed dry object
1/4 cup (1 ounce) grated fresh Parmesan cheese object
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano object
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper object
1 (8-ounce) package manicotti (14 shells) object
1 (26-ounce) jar fat-free tomato-basil pasta sauce
Cooking spray
1 cup water


Preheat oven to 375°.
Combine 1 1/2 cups mozzarella, cottage cheese, and the next 5 ingredients (through black pepper) in a medium bowl. Spoon about 3 tablespoons cheese mixture into each uncooked manicotti. Pour half of tomato-basil pasta sauce into a 13 x 9-inch baking dish coated with cooking spray. Arrange stuffed shells in a single layer over sauce, and top with the remaining sauce. Pour 1 cup water into dish. Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup mozzarella evenly over sauce. Cover tightly with foil. Bake at 375° for 1 hour or until shells are tender. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

Yield: 7 servings (serving size: 2 manicotti)

Nutritional Information:
CALORIES 328(25% from fat); FAT 9g (sat 4.8g,mono 2.2g,poly 0.5g); PROTEIN 23.8g; CHOLESTEROL 23mg; CALCIUM 451mg; SODIUM 891mg; FIBER 3.9g; IRON 3mg; CARBOHYDRATE 38.3g

Credit to Catherine Salzman ,
Cooking Light, MAY 2005

Favorite Ingredient Fridays is hosted by Overwhelmed With Joy Visit her and all the ladies who are participating in the recipe exchange.

Pay It Forward Book Exchange

Overwhelmed With Joy has a wonderful idea. She is going to give away a book once a month and is encouraging the winner to pass it on when done reading. All of the details are listed here. I think this is an awesome idea.

The first books she is giving away in the Pay It Forward Book Exchange is Lucky by Alice Sebold. Go visit, it looks like a great book, and an even better bit of bloggy fun & sharing.

Thursday Thirteen--Why I Had a Hard Time Posting

I am on the road this week and things didn't go exactly as planned. So I give you--thirteen reasons I had a hard time posting a Thursday Thirteen:

1. I had to get up before dawn to get a shower.
2. I had to debate the state of the world, religion and politics before I had coffee.
3. I had to drink brown colored water pretending to be coffee.
4. There were children to wake.
5. There were children to snuggle.
6. There were children to feed.
7. There were dishes to do.
8. There were clothes to find.
9. There sleeping bags to roll up.
10. My original idea involved photos that weren’t edited.
11. My back-up idea involved photos that would need editing.
12. Plan C wasn’t very interesting.
13. Getting a chance to use my computer involved sitting down for five minutes and the natives didn’t see the need.

Promising next week will be better, really.

Happy Thursday Thirteen! To visit more Thursday Thirteen participants visit here.

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

My Four Favs

Renee at Renee’s Ramblings tagged me to join this meme. Let’s see if I can do a good job.

Four jobs I've held:
My last four jobs have been overnight jobs (thankfully we are done with that for a while).
Night counselor for an assisted living facility for MR adults
Night supervisory for a residence home for mentally ill and abused children,
Personal care attendant for elderly adults in their homes (this involved some hospice type work) Operator for a doctors’ answering service.

Four Movies I can watch over and over again:
Dune (Sci-Fi Channel’s version is the best),
My Fair Lady

Four Places I have lived:
Missouri (misery)
western Iowa
Nebraska—out where the sand hills start
middle of Iowa

Four T.V. Shows I Watch:
I don’t watch too much television—cuts into my computer time—hah!! But when I do I watch:
House Hunter’s,
The Actor’s Studio,
Designed to Sell
and (no hate mail) Project Runway (it is the only series type, reality type show I watch).

Four Places I've been on Vacation:

Four Fav. Foods:
anything with pumpkin
anything with cream cheese
anything with chocolate
and my sister’s lasagna

Four websites I visit:
Ballet Talk for Dancers
The Homeschool Library
The Catholic Spitfire Grill
My Library Account

Four People I'm Tagging:
Amy at Amy’s Random Thoughts
Kim at mom-musings
Annie at My Life as Annie
JennaG at A Joyful Journey

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Time Travel Tuesday--First Driving Experience

It’s time to travel on Tuesday again. Annie is asking us for our first car or driving experience.

When I was fourteen it was legal to get a learner’s permit. And I did. I passed the written test quite nicely, thank you. Too bad I had to get behind a wheel of a car.

My father was rather, ahhhh…expressive in his teaching. Sometimes the expressiveness made me a little nervous. I remember driving his truck on a gravel road one time. He had told me the importance of not “riding the brake” somewhere in my lessons. Well, so I had that on my mind. We were on some hilly roads and I would get the truck up them and then just let it coast down. Apparently my “coasting” was like “roller-coasting.” I got a good lecture from that. Occasionally our lessons would end in me pulling over and refusing to drive anymore.

It was my mother who I was more comfortable with. She was always reserved. Her corrections were quiet and she never stomped on the “pretend passenger brake” or grabbed the door of the car with stress.

We survived from fourteen to fifteen. Driver’s Ed came next. My softball coach was my teacher. He said I thought STOP signs were “Oooze” signs because I would not step on the brake hard enough. I passed Driver’s Ed but with the condition that I take both the written and driving tests when I turned 16. I passed both.

My first accident was in the parking lot of my dad’s grocery store. I hit a customer’s car. Thankfully I was going so slow that nothing was hurt.

My first time driving a stick shift alone was in rush hour traffic—my husband made me drive him to work in our new (only) car and then drive myself home during the height of rush hour. Oh and 15 inches of snow had fallen the day before—the roads were drivable, but it was stressful. But after that I never had a problem and ended up loving our stick shift car.

My first (and only) speeding ticket was just before I turned 35. I cried so hard after I got it—not in front of the officer. I cried because I deserved the tickets and because my “babies” were in the car and I couldn’t believe I had been in such a hurry that I compromised my boys. I try hard to drive sensibly and this just wasn’t something I did.

Oh…for the record I drove my first tractor after 30 when I was working at a horse barn. I got it stuck in a manure pile and had to have my honey get me out of there. How romantic.

Time Travel Tuesday is hosted by Annie at My Life as Annie. You should visit Annie and all the other Time Travelers.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Children's Book Monday--James Herriot's Treasury for Children

children's book review It's time for Children's Book Monday again, hosted by Elise at A Path Made Straight.

Probably something most everyone has read, but something I get excited about each time we pull it out is James Herriot's Treasury for Children. These sweet tales of farm animals and village pets in the Scottish highlands are sure to bring a tear to my eye--and a questioning look from my children. "Is she going to cry??? Again??

James Herriot children's book

James Herriot was a farm vet and author. His well known adult books, the All Creatures Great and Small books were favorites of mine since late in highschool. How wonderful it was for me to find his Treasury for Children when I was at the beginning of our homeschool journey.

My favorite stories are Bonnie's Big Day , a story of an old farmer and his love for the two horses who helped him create his farm and The Christmas Day Kitten, a bittersweet view of how one woman's kindness to a stray cat brought her loss and then happiness--but all eight stories are wonderful and mesmerizing.

The illustrations by Ruth Brown and Peter Barrett are rich and textured. They fit perfectly into the tales.

The nice thing about Herriot's tales is that he writes for both children and adults so as the children get older finding his novels will be like finding a letter from an old friend.

The only problem I see is that if you have a child who is truly an "animal addict" after reading these stories you may be pelted with requests for lambs, kittens, horses and dogs, not to mention an odd pig or an old cow.

Grains of Gratitude

So my sister was in town to rearrange and hide all my kitchen things visit. She had personal business to attend to but got to stop here for a night.

I’m grateful she was here. My husband and the boys stayed home while we went to the bookstore and to buy a printer. (Do you know they make refrigerators with televisions in them??? I know, I lead a sheltered life. Best Buy was an adventure.)

We stayed up way too late talking as we always have since we were about twelve and seven and then she gave me shin splints made me get up and walk at the crack of dawn!! After the night that sounded like WWIII. Fireworks are legal in my state and the use and abuse of them is unbelievable. I know my sister did not believe me when I told her the smoke got so thick it hung in the streets, and that we only had to step out the door and have huge fireworks all around us. (Who needed a city display?) I am grateful it rained and the risk of fire was minimized.

We are on the road this morning—the boys and I. Heading to the grandparent’s house. This is the big blow out vacation for us this year.

I am grateful we can go. That my husband doesn’t begrudge the time with my family (he has to stay and work and hold down the fort). I am grateful my mom is still around to visit. She has a CT scan on Monday if anyone has a prayer to send her way. I am grateful that we will get to stomp around areas I grew up in. I think the boys need to have some sense of roots.

I am grateful the boys’ summer intensives are over. Although they say they could keep going, I think the break is needed. I am proud of how they worked and learned.

Sum-sum-summertime!! What are you grateful for?

Grains of Gratitude began with Christine at Brady's Bunch and just keeps on blessing me!!