Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Wednesday in the Word-The Lord is My Rock and Strength

The Lord is described as many things such as; Strong Tower, Fortress, Shepherd, Shield, Light, Deliverer and the list could go on and on. But He is also our Rock and our Strength.



Sometimes just the weariness of life in general can overwhelm us at times can't it? I don't know about you but there are times when I feel like every ounce of strength I've got is zapped from me and my life can resemble a cooked noodle instead of a Rock! How about you?

The truth is that we all face times that we feel we have no strength to carry us through the trail, tribulation or just the course of life that seems to our present path. 

There are days when we feel guilty for silently complaining when we look around and see all the hurt that others are feeling. We think, "I am shamed to even ask for prayer because my current needs and situation is so light compared to others.

On some days we think "DOES anyone else even CARE? Do they realize what my needs, my hurts and my disappointments in life are.

You know what? It is normal for us to have these feelings. 

Sometimes in the quietness of my whining, fretting and yes, even feeling sorry for myself, the Lord has shown me through others how to gain perspective. How can I whine and fret about something going on in my life when I see a sister in the Lord battling from cancer?  That tends to put things into perspective doesn't it?

 At other times He has placed just the person that I needed in my life that has gone through what I am going through and understands me totally. No judging me, no trying to fix the problem, no passing it off as just a "thing", just simply knowing first hand the depths of my heart. And can I be totally honest? YES, this too shall pass but when we're in the midst of it it doesn't seem to be moving too quickly now does it? 

But there has been times that the Lord has just sweetly made Himself so present in the midst of my circumstance and has reminded me that HE and HE alone is my ROCK and my STRENGTH. That YES, my situation or current path that I am walking may seem minor compared to another but HE cares. YES, it could be worse. NO, I am not alone. YES, someone cares....His name is Jesus!
Sometimes, we need no other...it may be a time in our life that the Lord is teaching us to depend totally on Him for that particular season of life.

You see our Lord cares about every single detail of our life. If it is important to you then it is important to Him...REGARDLESS of the situation at hand.

The word Rock in the dictionary is described as; A large mass of stone; a concreted mass of stony material; consolidated or unconsolidated solid mineral matter but in a figurative sense it means:someone who is strong, stable and dependable

Our Lord is our ROCK when we feel so unstable. He is our STRENGTH when we fill we do not have one ounce left to give. He will never leave us nor forsake us. Experiencing Him as my ROCK reminds me that He is a solid foundation in my life. The Living God that I serve is Strong, Stable and Dependable and without Him I am nothing more than a grain of sand that can be blown away by the wind.


  1. My hope is built on nothing less
    Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness;
    I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
    But wholly lean on Jesus’ name.
    • Refrain:
      On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand;
      All other ground is sinking sand,
      All other ground is sinking sand.
  2. When darkness veils His lovely face,
    I rest on His unchanging grace;
    In every high and stormy gale,
    My anchor holds within the veil.
  3. His oath, His covenant, His blood
    Support me in the whelming flood;
    When all around my soul gives way,
    He then is all my hope and stay.
  4. When He shall come with trumpet sound,
    Oh, may I then in Him be found;
    Dressed in His righteousness alone,
    Faultless to stand before the throne.

 Hugs and blessings, Cindy




Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Tuesday Toots and Recipe for Eggplant-Chicken Parm

I like eggplant parm and I like chicken parm so why not have them together?


I found the recipe from Rachel Ray...YES...my favorite TV cook of all times! But I tweaked her recipe just a tad as I did not have everything that she listed so used what I had. 

Okay, so the Eggplant came straight out of garden....Wash the eggplant, slice the ends off and then cut in 1/4 inch steaks. Rinse well.


Sprinkle a little Kosher salt on the eggplants and then lay out on a paper towel while you prepare your other ingredients.

 I love Kosher Salt and use it for almost everything!

Next, take a small onion, peel, and dice it up. I used 3 cloves of garlic and diced them up.(However fine you want the onion and garlic to be) I like a little "chunk" in my sauce.



Take 3 tablespoons of butter or margarine and 1 tablespoon of olive oil or veggie oil and melt.



Add your onions and garlic to the butter-oil mixture and a pinch of Kosher salt and cook on medium heat covered for about 8-10 minutes until soft. Stir often. THE SMELL IS AWESOME!




Now for your Tomato Basil sauce:

1 regular size can chicken broth
2 cans (regular size) of petite diced tomatoes
1 small can of Rotel chilies and tomatoes
1 med. size can of tomato puree
1 tsp. of basil seasoning. I used fresh basil out of my garden that I had ground up already.
 Mix these items together in another mixing bowl.

  
Now add the tomato mixture to your cooked onions and garlic.I simmered this for about 30 minutes which gave me plenty of time to get the rest of my prep done.



The smell is just heavenly!

Now, take your chicken breast or cutlets and wash and dry. Salt and pepper. **I actually buy large boneless chicken breast when on sale and I slice them in half. That way I get several meals out of them.** If you use thick pieces of chicken breast you will need to pound them to flatten out.


 I winded up with 9 pieces of chicken. This recipe really makes a lot but I shared my good fortune with the family!

Next:
Parsley, basil and rosemary. I used fresh herbs out of my garden and simply just picked, washed and chopped. If you use some that you have harvested and ground or store bought then go with 
1 - 2 teaspoons of each.






  • 1/4 cup flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme, finely chopped
  • - See more at: http://www.rachaelrayshow.com/recipe/12686_Stuffed_Eggplant_and_Chicken_Parm_with_Tomato_Basil_Sauce/index.html#sthash.EPmIPITG.dpuf
     Oops, almost forgot the thyme.



    Next:

    Grab a bowl and pour into it the following:

    1 1/2 cups of Plain bread crumbs
    1 1/2 cups of Panko seasoned or unseasoned bread crumbs
    1 1/2 cups of grated parm. cheese (I used some I already had that I like to cook with that was grated.


    Grated parm cheese



    Now in your dish put all the above in including your spices.



    Mix well.


    Now: I done this in batches since I had 9 eggplant-chicken parm (sandwiches as I call them) to do. Take one bowl and put some flour in it. Then another bowl and mix up three eggs. Like I said, I done this in batches so winded using about 6-7 eggs.So you now have three bowls out...flour, eggs and crumb mixture.





    Take an oblong dish and spray with cooking spray.


    Next: Get your sandwiches made.
    Take a slice of chicken, one slice of mozzarella cheese and a slice of eggplant and make a sandwich. 


    Get your frying pan ready. Add enough oil to fry at least 3 sandwiches at a time.*Around 1/4-1/2 cup of oil* I used veggie oil. 

    Dredge your sandwich in the flour, then coat in eggs and then crumb mixture.Cook on medium to medium high until golden brown. Around 8 minutes. (about 4 minutes per side)

     Good grief they look good don't they?

    Now while you are frying up those bad boys layer some of your tomato sauce that you have cooked with your onions and garlic in your pan. Cover the bottom of the pan.



    After cooking your sandwiches drain on paper towel and let cool. Place your sandwiches on top of the tomato sauce. Drizzle your tomato sauce over the tops of sandwiches and add Sharp shredded cheese on top or whatever type of cheese you like.

    Bake in preheated oven at 350 until cheese is melted good. Maybe 5-7 minutes or so. 


    Get your pasta noodles ready! I used Angel Hair and cooked as directed on package. When cooked drain all water out except for about 1 cup of the water that you cooked the noodles in. Take some of your tomato sauce mixture and add to the noodles with water and toss.



    Place noodles on plate and top with eggplant-chicken sandwich and add a tad of shredded parm. cheese and EAT!



    Who says you can't have eggplant and chicken parm combined?????? 

    Now...I did share this with my girls and it was a hit. My daughter Melissa intended on taking some to work with her the next day but my 3 year grandgirl loved it and barely saved her mama any! 

    Hope you've enjoyed my toot for this week. 

    Hugs and blessings, Cindy

    Monday, August 18, 2014

    Make Me Smile Monday-School's In!

    My youngest daughter is a First grade school teacher and this is her 6th year of teaching. She loves her job and her babies. My "make me smile grin moment" came when she shared with me that she had been asked to take Top Group at her school! She had already been voted on by her piers to be Team Leader for her Quad this year so this news was like an added extra dose of excitement and nervousness rolled up into one. YES...this Mama GRINNED from ear to ear! Ya know Mama's and Nana's do a lot of grinning!



    However, this also meant....new class room, re-decorating and revamping. OOH...lots of work! Needless to say...there is very little we do in our family that the whole family doesn't get involved in so this task has taken the later part of summer to accomplish but we got it done! Want to share with you some of the class room activity that's been going on. 





    She has had a Star theme going on already but this year we decided to jazz it up a little with Hollywood, movies, and popcorn.

    On this board will go her lunch menu weekly for the kids to see.



    Her Star qualities board; simple but cute with the red, black and yellow. 





    I especially like the red, black and yellow months of the year with the stars on them.



    Awe...her little puppets for the "theatre" handed down to her by the former teacher of this class whose shoes will be hard to fill. Don't get any better than Miss Kelly Murphy. But, that is why God gave us our own shoes, right?



    Her class rules.



    Would you believe that I had enough black material stashed away in my little shed to cover everything she wanted covered in her classroom? Computer center, desk, and other things all got covered just like she wanted. LOL! See...it pays to HOARD at times!





    Front of her desk draped with black material and red tulle. (my kind of colors)



    Each cabinet is filled with something so we made labels that looked like a movie/theatre and placed them on each cabinet to show what was in the cabinet. I didn't make a picture of every one that we made but just wanted to show you what they looked like. 



    We actually made these little signs for a lot of different things in her room. 




    Speaking of library...love this!








       
    Aren't the pop corn tubs just too cute?






    Amazing at how just a piece of black material can shine things up.


    Birthday Board:

    Writing Center:


    Just got to have some crayons ya know....




    We finally got her desks situated. She has always had 18 kids but this year was going to have 20. Smaller room meant less space so we had to put our thinking caps on. WORKED OUT GREAT!



    Each child got a cute book to take home in their little lunch bags along with class information.



    Who says you can't use your left over star plates from July 4th????



    Yep, just a picture of the little sink where the kids will wash those grubby little hands at.




    But right there within arms reach of a towel to dry those hands will be these words....




    Love this! My friend Lauren gave me this idea because she too has this wording in her guest bathroom. Of course hers matches her decor but this is perfect for the classroom.




    For Open House she set up stations for the parents. I didn't snap pics of every station but thought it was a cute idea.




    Station 4 was too cute!




    Parents could crab an apple off the Giving Tree and bring in the items needed. However, a blessing happened the night of Open House...parents brought in that night and filled her bins.



    The Treasure chest! YES, loaded to the brim too!




    For Open House she wanted each child to have something a little extra special to carry home so....




    What better than popcorn? 




    My friend Andrea gave me a pop corn machine and the Manager at our local Ace Hardware donated me the little bags they use for popcorn. Turned out so cute and was a huge hit!

    Right outside her class room is her main board and each star has a child's name on it.

    Getting her board ready for 1st day of school.



    I gave her this plaque when she began teaching 6 years ago. 


    Chilling out with a Starbucks! YEP, she knows it is going to be a long year........LOL!


    So proud of our little school teacher who does strive to make a difference in the life of child.



    Thanks for letting me share my smile grin for today!
     Pray for my daughter as she leads and guides these kids to a brighter tomorrow.


    Hugs and blessings, Cindy