Monday, April 30, 2007

I thought I had a little more time

I remember soon after Miss K was born writing to a friend and telling her that I am sure it will be my daughter that will be walking around with her dress up. I thought that would start maybe when she is 6 or if she is advanced 4. Well, spring came and it seems now that her shirts are being pulled up showing her belly. We are working on learning to put your shirt down and keep your shirt down.

Oh the joys of being a special needs momma. It is full of laughs as you watch and listen to the the funny things. She can beg for pretzels with the babble words that she has and repeat and repeat until we all end up laughing. There are also times of tears but thankfully now there are fewer tears. She is one great kid.

Menu 4/30

Another week, another menu. One of the things that I did this week was do a quick inventory and look at what we have and see what I can use up. I tried to plan each meal to include at least one item that we already have.

Monday -Noodle Stir-fry

Tuesday - Lemon Asparagus Pasta

Wednesday - Pork Chops

Thursday - East Indian Lentils with Spinach

Friday - Greek night

Saturday - baked ziti

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Money to Burn

My love of paper almost got me in trouble the other day. Miss K and I were walking home from the store and I walked past a store that had such cute paper items. I saw the paper food and thought that would be so cute for scrapbooking. Then I paused and remember, "wait a second, people here don't do scrapbooking." I looked at the store and it was not a scrapbook store rather a store selling money, incense sticks, and paper food, paper cars and other things for worship. I decided that I did not want to buy those paper items. Maybe it is like eating meat offered to idols but I didn't want to do it.

I have lived here in an region where money is burned for some time. There is a special money that they buy to burn so that ancestors have money to spend in the after life. Here in addition to burning money they burn food and cars so you can eat and drive.

I thought about it and was reminded that our God is preparing a feast for us. We are invited to the marriage supper of the lamb. We don't need to take our own food, it isn't a potluck but a feast. He is preparing for us, his children.

My heart is saddened for those around me living in fear and darkness. My heart rejoices to know that there is still time to go and tell them of the feast.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Menu 4/23

I was so proud of myself. I sat down last week and planned a great week of meals. You know there is a "but" in that statement. It happened Monday as I was cooking dinner. I ran out of gas. We ended up at the Indian restaurant in our town.

Indian Restaurant

Chicken Broccoli Casserole

Carrot soup with tomato cheese pie

Lentils & Rice taco style


hmm either Greek night which was moved from Thursday or maybe a hike so we will skip that.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Rethinking my dream

I had a dream of someday having land and being able to raise some chickens. I thought it would be nice to have my own eggs and have hormone free chickens. I worked up the courage and told my husband my dream. I wasn't sure how he would react. His reaction in a way shocked me. He didn't laugh but said that sounds good. So for the past months we have been talking about raising chickens.

Today I bought a chicken and now I am rethinking that dream. Did you know that chickens have heads and their feet have nice nails? Somehow seeing the head on the chicken made her look a bit too real. This was a yellow chicken and not a black chicken. I just grabbed it and ran out of the store wanting to get home.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Menu 4/16

What are we eating this week?
That is a good question. One that I do hope to answer prior to the end of the week and hopefully before 5:30 each day. I need a plan.

Indian restaurant - we just got home from traveling and had no food in the house
Big huge salad using Island China's copycat dressing
Miss K had a hard boiled egg, veggie and cheese
Out with friends - these are friends that live in town but we rarely see
Out with friends - these are our new friends who are moving here and so this is our chance to get together
leftovers or whatever Miss K and I can find around the house as Bo has his Friday night fellowship
I can't think that far ahead. I don't know what we will be doing. I might go to the Scrapbook Day or we might go hiking. We might see our new friends again. I might cook or we might go out.

Now I do have a plan for the week and we will be eating.

Monday, April 16, 2007

A Beautiful God

Last week a friend and I were wandering an Asia antique market. There amid the dishes, teapots, paintings were various idols. One thing that struck me as I looked at these were how scary they were. Their facial expression was what would be described as scary. Maybe it is done that way to cause people to fear them.

Additionally as I looked at them, none of the idols looked beautiful. As we wander the market, I thought of how beautiful my God, the living creator God is. I was reminded of David's words in Psalm 27:4 "One thing I ask of the LORD, this is what I seek; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple." Oh, to gaze upon the LORD and to see his beauty. To me gaze has the idea of looking, pondering, looking again, seeing new details and just looking. That is not what I did in the market that day. I glimpsed and looked the other way.

I am so thankful to know the living God who is a beautiful God.

Monday, April 9, 2007

Worldwide Down Syndrome Day

I missed it. I guess that is a result of living in my own little world here in what often seems to be the middle of nowhere. Now that I know about it I will remember it next year. It is rather easy to remember 3-21 is Worldwide Down Syndrome Day. Why that date? Down Syndrome is 3 copies of the 21st chromosome.

We have lived with DS for 2 1/2 years. It is full of ups and downs. Now seems to be more ups than downs. I do remember the downs, the days of wondering, tears, fears, and not knowing.

Things I am thankful for about Down Syndrome:
1. There is quite a bit of research and books available. I have a collection on my shelf -- Teaching Math to Down Syndrome Children, Teaching Reading, Gross Motor Skills, Fine Motor skills, Language and Communication, Babies with Down Syndrome, and a few more.

2. This might sound a bit strange but in a way I am thankful for the distinct features. That clues people in a bit. I am also thankful for her small size because people don't often realize she is as old as she is so their expectations are not as high.

3. I am thankful for the community I have met through DS. I have met so many wonderful moms and dads and extra blessings. I remember soon after Miss K was born and we learned she had DS I asked a missionary if she knew anyone anywhere who has a DS child and was living overseas. No, she didn't but then a week later she called and said they just remembered a couple living 2 hours south of us with a 10 year old son. That was the first parent I talked to and I was so encouraged. I also joined an online homeschool group after we learned Miss K had DS and even before she came home from the hospital. That also has been a source of encouragement and help.

4. I am thankful to God for all he has done in the past 2 1/2 years and know that he will continue in the years to come. He actually began working before she was born in moving us to deliver in a hospital that had a NICU. He provided doctors who were willing to take risks and perform her heart surgery. We had a wonderful PT who pushed Miss K and donated her time to help us. This list goes on including the Speech therapist that lives here in my village in the middle of nowhere and is working with Miss K.

Today most days she is just Miss K who keeps us laughing and some days she is Miss K with that extra chromosome that gets in the way.

So today I am celebrating a bit late Worldwide Down Syndrome Day but really I celebrate it every day.

Thursday, April 5, 2007

30 days to an organized kitchen

Organizing Junkie is hosting a 30 day organizational Challenge. I decided to tackle the kitchen. My reason for picking that area is because that is my biggest challenges in this apartment. I love to cook but things are not organized they are stacked and often I am rearranging piles to get to things I need. The room is small but has quite a bit of stuff both food and things I use.

As I go through this room, I really do want to look for things that I can get rid of or maybe move to another place in the apartment. I think we might eat quite a bit of the food that we have around that we have not yet eaten.

My goal is to have an organized useful kitchen at the end of 30 days. I might have to get rid of some things to reduce the clutter and also buy a few containers to help keep things organized but I also want to see what I have around here that I can use.

Here is the current state of the kitchen.

This is actually a drawer. It looks like a junk drawer but that is just because it is not organized.
Technically the refrigerator is not in the kitchen but in the dining room but I decided to include that in the organizational challenge not necessarily the inside but the top and the outside.

This is under the sink. I have cleaning supplies, soft drinks, onions potatoes, and trash bags aka grocery bags.
This is the cabinet with the baking pans and my stash of almonds.

This is above where the stove would be so it is high up and you can see the vent. It needs some organizational help. I couldn't even turn the spice shelf last night as I think something was caught in the back.

It is almost impossible to get a picture of the whole kitchen. You can see the stove/oven, the place where a 2 burner stove would go and then the sink.

This is a bookshelf that fits along the wall that holds food and containers and my cookbooks. You can see how things are piled on there.

One more cabinet. You can to be careful when you open this one that things don't fall out.

A few of the challenges that I face in the room are the available space and the amount of things that need to go in that space. I do have to keep stocked up on things as you can't always find it at the grocery store.

There now the whole world can see my kitchen but I am planning that in 30 days you will see a new organized and clutter free kitchen.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

March's Results

It is hard to believe that it is April already. Time to reflect on how I did on my goals for the year.

Read one book - I did it. The exciting this is I found a place where I can give my books away and know they are being used. I have a bag here to give to my friend.

Reduce - I used some more fabric making bags. I didn't buy any more fabric. I did buy some ribbon but that is so small. Paper - I scrapbooked 27 pages so that used some paper. I also gave some paper away to a friend who is beginning to scrapbook. I will confess I bought some new paper but it was just what I need for my Asian pages.

Exercise - I am walking with my walking partner when it is not raining. I will admit that I am not where I should be in that.

Quiet time - I am continuing in my Romans study and currently am in the middle of Psalms.

That was March. Now we move into April.

Monday, April 2, 2007

Menu 4/2 to 4/7

I sat down and planned my menu on paper and then drew arrows all around the paper as I moved things around because of various changes in our week.

Asian style beef stew which I made for lunch as Bo was not going to be home for dinner and we didn't have leftovers. I don't like cooking my big meal at lunchtime.

Thai meal out with friends

We have a lunch appointment and so for dinner we are going to have something easy
Lemon Asparagus with bow-tie pasta

Chicken with potato casserole Need to make some sides and dessert as we are having company

Chicken stir-fry - I want to make a stir-fry once a week. My gas canister is the biggest one which tells me that cooking western uses more gas so I am going to try something new more Asian cooking