That was quite a storm–I can’t believe none of the children woke up!
I’ve been on a quest to find some new summer-worthy shirts. I’ve been pregnant and/or recovering from pregnancy for so many summers in the recent past that I’m down to about four or five summer tops–not enough variety for my liking, and not enough pieces to make laundry an easier task. So, I’ve looked at about every online retailer I can think of–Lane Bryant, Avenue, Target, Kohl’s, JC Penney, Macy’s, and about every other place I’ve heard of. Now, I know the plus-size market is smaller in the first place, but seriously–if I see one more ugly mod print, I’ll scream. Horrid blocky patterns in even more hideous color combinations–black and turquoise, black and hot pink, black and white. This is not my idea of high fashion–heck, it’s not even my idea of passable fashion. I really don’t see that a return to 60s clothing styles is helpful or necessary. I’d get on board with more 40s and 50s style fashions (and actually, as far as dresses go, I’ve had some luck with that) but please, no more 60s and 70s Laugh-In inspired clothing.
And the few times I have found something I like, I look at the tag, and discover it’s got a good deal of rayon in the fabrication. Am I the only person in America who hates that material? I keep reading about how easy it is to care for, how well it wears in comparison to cotton, blah, blah, blah. Every time I’ve owned a piece of rayon based clothing, however, I’ve found that it begins to look shabby after only a washing or two. I just can’t get on board with the stuff. Give me a plain old cotton shirt any day, or even a poly blend, but please leave the rayon out of it. Of course, this has further narrowed the clothing available to me to purchase.
I’m starting to feel like Lucy and Ethel being made fun of for saying they “haven’t a thing to wear! I can certainly appreciate why they would say it, anyway. And, I’m guessing I’m never going to find a new shirt ever again! (OK, it’s possible that was a slight exaggeration…but of course, the fact that I “haven’t a thing to wear” was 100% truth!) But seriously, I’m beginning to wonder how long it’s going to take to find something that’s in my budget, and fits my style and fabric expectations. It’s almost enough to make me want to learn to sew…almost, but not quite!
Taking the children to the zoo–always a blast. But one of these days, we’re going to have to bite the bullet and get a zoo membership!
I’ve grown more and more puzzled over the conversations I’ve read on what is predominantly a Christian message forum. They center mainly over politics, and the cutting, personal things some women say about the candidates, as well as current officials, shocks me. I, of course, have my own political leanings, but I honestly try to stay away from personal attacks (although I’m not always successful) and stick to the issues about which I feel strongly.
This got me to thinking, however–do other denominations not interpret the Commandments the way we Lutherans do? From my own catechesis, and more recently, from going through the six chief parts with my own children on a nightly basis, I’m well familiar with the question “What does this mean?” In light of the conversations I’ve been reading recently, I’ve especially been thinking about the meanings of the fourth and eighth Commandments. Respecting our authorities, and speaking well of our brothers and sisters in Christ.
I have no problem with having personal political ideals, and with fighting to make those ideals common practice. But I feel that there is a right way to accomplish that (voting in elections, giving support to candidates that share those ideals, personally becoming involved in the political system, etc.), and bashing people for believing differently from you, and calling into account things like their faith, with no other evidence than they disagree with you as a compass to judge their Christianity, is certainly not the way to do it.
I totally understand, in the heat of the moment, saying something you shouldn’t. I’ve done that many times myself. What I don’t get, is people who are supposed to be Christians, who continually keep saying the same nasty things over and over, with no apparent purpose other than saying the meanest thing they can think of. It sure doesn’t seem very Christ-like, and it’s also not productive.
So, where do other Christians stand with their understandings of the Commandments? Do they have Catechisms that help to give them direction and interpretation? I can’t believe that in the studying I’ve done of other denominations, I don’t have the answers to questions! I guess a little research is in order. I, for one, am glad to have Luther’s Small Catechism to shed some light on these issues, and to help guide me in ways that will help me as I strive to live more as Christ wants me to, and less as I’m naturally inclined.
Every time I make this cake, it gets great reviews, so I thought I’d share…
1 German Chocolate cake mix
14 oz. bag of caramels, unwrapped
1 1/2 sticks butter
1/2 cup evaporated milk
3/4 cup chocolate chips
1 cup chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9×13 baking dish.
Prepare cake mix according to package directions. Pour half of batter into prepared pan, and bake for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, melt butter, caramels and evaporated milk in saucepan over low heat, stirring frequently. Take cake out of oven and pour caramel mixture over top. Sprinkle chocolate chips and pecans over caramel, then spread remaining batter over all. Return to oven and bake additional 20 minutes.
Allow to cool on wire rack, then refrigerate. Serve with whipped cream.
Tired, but happy…a day well spent!
Seven years–five moves, four children, and now a second set of cookware. Happy anniversary Mister!
I’ve decided to venture into the world of vegetable gardening this year. Contrary to popular opinion, it’s not because of rising fuel and food costs–with all the money I’ve sunk into the blasted thing so far, I could probably do a full week’s worth of grocery shopping. No, I did it for two reasons. 1.) I’ve always liked the idea of gardening. It’s some kind of primitive thing I guess–tilling the land, growing something for my family to eat. The whole hard labor followed by the fruits of my labor thing. And also B.) I thought it would be a good learning experience for my children to see how something grows from seed (or seedling in a lot of cases) to a vegetable bearing plant.
So, aside from the effort that went into digging the rows for the garden, (I had no idea that what is I guess is a clay based soil would be so hard to dig through and so heavy!), and the lugging around 40 pound sacks of topsoil, there are many gardening struggles I was previously unaware of. For example, I am familiar with the concept of drought. I’ve heard about it on the news since I was a kid, read about it in the Little House books, etc., etc. I know that too little rain is a big problem for farmers. I had never considered, however, the problem of too much rain. As it is right now, I appear to be down one cucumber and two broccoli plants because of flooding. It also remains to be seen how many of the carrot and radish seeds may have been washed away. Part of this is, I’m sure, due to poor drainage and a bad slope in the backyard, but I think it’s also partly just that there has been so darn much rain the last few weeks, and plants only need so much water. Lesson learned.
Problem two, which I had considered, but kind of brushed off as not a threat–something eating my plants. Bigger threat than I anticipated. Not only did something (rabbit? skunk? bird?) have the nerve to go after on of my beautiful and amazing smelling basil plants, it apparently had no taste at all, and decided that the basil was no good, leaving the poor leaves to wilt on the ground. And it wasn’t enough to take just one leaf, but whatever it was took every leaf off of one plant. I was really looking forward to fresh pesto, too…
The third problem, which was actually the first one I ran into, was also not something unfamiliar to me, but something I certainly wasn’t expecting in late April–a late season frost. The only things that survived that calamity were the broccoli that can’t hold up to rain, celery, and the onion sets. I suppose I should have known better, but I was eager to plant, and in my defense, my experiences with living down here so far have suggested that late April is a great time for planting.
Problem four, which didn’t actually cause any damage, thankfully, but easily could have, was hail. Good thing for me, the hail was mostly pea sized, but I could see how quickly plants, especially small ones like my seedlings, could be flattened by hail.
Problem five–lack of sun. Now, I know there are some rays of light getting through, even with the crappy weather we’ve been having, but my plants are looking decidedly not green enough, so I’m guessing they’re lacking in the photosynthesis department. Both the plants and I have had enough clouds, thank you very much!
So where does that leave me? I’m just waiting for a plague of grasshoppers or a horde of hungry blackbirds (I read the Little House books a lot as a child, and I’ll admit, also as an adult!) to attack the garden next. I can’t really imagine what else could happen, but I’m sure if it can, I’ll find out about it soon enough. It’s really sobering to consider what trials farmers face–how many things can go wrong each year, and how much of it is completely out of their control. It makes me quite grateful that I don’t have to depend on the land for my survival, and that there are grocery stores and farmers markets where I can get all of the fresh produce I desire, without having to do the work or depend on the weather and wildlife to cooperate with me! I’m happy to have my little garden as a learning experience and pleasant diversion that gives me something fun to do outdoors.
To summarize what I’ve planted, even though I’ve already lost some of it–four broccoli plants, three cucumber plants, three jalepeno plants, three each summer squash and zucchini plants, three roma tomato and six beefsteak tomato plants, three celery plants, one cilantro, four basil, one set of onions (why are they called a set?) and an envelope each of carrot and radish seeds. So, we’ll just have to wait and see what happens, and if I actually get any produce out of this garden this year at all!
First something eats one of my basil plants, and now hail…perhaps I just shouldn’t bother with a garden…*sigh*
I consider this a successful Mother’s Day–but my prayers are with the Fietsam family, as I can’t even begin to imagine their emotions today