Sunday, 29 June 2014

Why We Worship 26


If you have been visiting with me for "Why We Worship" each week I would like to thank you for your company and your comments.

I have been writing this for 6 months and today we come to the final post in the series.  I think this is the only thing that I could have chosen for our final one.

(If you have missed any of the posts in this series you can catch-up by clicking on the tab at the top.)




And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM:    Exodus 3v14


 This is the holiest name for God in the Old Testament.


There is no-one else who can make such a statement.







We serve a God who is the only "I AM"


He is the God of NOW!

Not a god of the past.


He is the God who is ALIVE with us!

Not an idol made of bronze or stone.


He is the God who is PERSONAL!

Not something that doesn't relate to us.



"What does it mean I Am?   He is what?" some might scoff.

We could not answer that to suit them 

because




He simply exists and is everything we could possibly think of
and even more besides.


Who could ever think of worshipping anyone else.


Linking up with
WHOLEHEARTED WEDNESDAYS


Saturday, 28 June 2014

What Should We be Doing?



For years now I have heard lots of talk about

 "What is God's Purpose in Your Life?"

or

 "What is God's Purpose for you?"



Often I think that this is directed more at women than at men because of the fact that

 we might be "stay at home mums"!

or

 we might be "housewives"!

or

 we might be sitting in our church wondering "what our role is"!



I think that we need to remember two things 
when we are tempted to start listening to or reading 
what someone else has to say 
about our role or our purpose in life.



FIRSTLY

The Westminster Shorter Catechism
No. 1.

Q. What is the chief end of man?

A. Man's chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever.



SECONDLY

The verse we were given to memorize for 







When we focus on God and what he has instructed for all of us,

when we are rejoicing in our Salvation,

when we are in constant communion with Him,

when we can see our way to be thankful to Him for all He does for us each day; 

other things will fall into place. 


Then we will know

when something is right for us to do 

or

when we should say yes to the 
specific, unique things
 God has for us.





So we are left with two questions:  

What should You & I be Doing?

&

Are we willing to go back to His instructions and focus on Him first?





Linking up with
WHOLEHEARTED WEDNESDAYS
FELLOWSHIP FRIDAYS

Friday, 27 June 2014

Sense of Satisfaction is a great thing. - Housework/Funwork 24


What a month this has been!



Husband ill with severe food poisoning.

Then

Husband on work trip to Morocco and comes back not so good again.

So my mind was not so much on Housework this month.


This is what was supposed to be covered this month.
Taken from the full Year Schedule.




This is what was done this month

Toilet       -       Overhaul & Inventory completed

Bathroom       -       Overhaul & Inventory completed

Other smaller tasks generally completed.


Gardening       -      Weeding  but still so much to do.

Hall & Stairs       -       Partly done.

Cleaning Jewellery       -       Partly done.



The Steamer

was well used again this month for the bathroom, toilet and hall & stairs.
Tiled walls, tiles floors, windows, mats & carpets all got the steamer treatment.


The Vinegar & Baking Soda
were well used again this month for the bathroom & toilet.
The actual toilets bowls and the toilet brushes all got the mixture treatment.



Now I want to tell you about something I got done from my Toilet To Do List.

Each time I do a room I make out the Overhaul List and work through those things to complete the room and then I do the Inventory but then at the end I make another list - the ToDo List for the room which is the list of things I need to do decoratively or in a maintenance way for that room.

Well for the Toilet this was my ToDo List



Only one item, nothing else needed to be repaired and no other decorative work needed to be done.
And if you read my post a few weeks ago "The Smallest Room in the House"
you would understand.

Here is a picture of the 2 different hooks at two different levels - I know, I know we can't understand why the previous owners did this either!



We have just been lazy about getting round to removing them plus being rather concerned about how to tackle this without annoying the tiles because the whole room is tiled floor to ceiling and we didn't want a new tile job.

So the other day when Fred seemed to be feeling a bit better I decided to get on with this (well I decided he could get on with this).

Fred got a scraper blade thingy and cautiously tried to remove the hook on the left.
It came off quite easily and with a little bit more scraping all the glue was removed as well.

We were delighted.

Then he tried the one on the right and although it did not come off as easily as the first one it did come off but even with more scraping the glue was not moving.

Not so delighted but still at least the hook was off and no tiles had been harmed in the process.


I have a product from Lakeland (not sure if it is sold elsewhere) called STICKY STUFF Remover Gel
and it's mate STICKY STUFF Remover  which is a liquid.



So I got out the Gel which has a brush attached to the lid



I simply applied the gel liberally over the glue residue and left it to work


I left it on about an hour and wiped it off with a damp sponge.

The result


the glue was completely removed.
So it does what it says on the tub.


I had previously used this product and the liquid to remove sticky labels and they had both worked well with those and now it worked well on this job too.

Just another great product from Lakeland (one of my favourite shops as I have stated before)

You can imagine how thankful I was that this was not the awkward job we had imagined and it is nice to have a whole ToDo List completed.

Ok, Ok, I know it only had one item on it 
but the satisfaction is still there.











Linking up with  METAMORPHIS MONDAY

Wednesday, 25 June 2014

I'm too Sexy for this Card - A Dose of Encouragement 26


Mum!!!!

You can't sing that over the phone.

This is what my oldest son said to me in a telephone conversation last year.


So no doubt he will be saying

Mum!!!!

You can't say that word on your blog.

If he sees this post.




Why?

Okay I am a 55+ wife, mother, new mother-in-law, and ready to be a granny (if they can take the hint).

And I suppose 55+ mothers are not seen as sexy to their children, or to many other people for that matter.

But my husband bought me this card for my birthday last year.




Because He has a sense of humour.


All I could do for the first 10 mins was laugh, laugh, laugh.


Then I started to sing.


You see it is a musical card and when you open it this deep voice sings


"You're too sexy for this card, too sexy for this card, too sexy by far."


So after the 10 mins of laughing I just had to sing it and I danced around the lounge singing it.

Now what happens after you have a long laugh and a song and dance routine?

Well obviously you are very happy, in a good mood (and have had some exercise) so obviously it is good for you.


Then just at that moment comes the phone call from your son to wish you a Happy Birthday.

Of course being me I just can't resist it.

I just have to do it.

I say

"You're got to hear this"  

and I

OPEN THE CARD

He says

"What's That?"

and I tell him it's the card his father gave me.

Then I make the big mistake

and

I start singing it to him

and that's when he says

Mum!!!!

You can't sing that over the phone.



Yes there are certain things you don't talk to just anyone about.

Fred and I love a joke and teasing within the family and good friends, but yes there are things that you don't talk to just anyone about.

I am so thankful that Fred and I can talk to each other about anything & everything because we know each other so well and we trust each other after all these years together.



I am saddened when I see other marriages where the couples do not share everything or would feel they need to keep secrets from each other.

If we cannot have the right relationship with our spouse then I feel it would be very difficult to have that right relationship with God.

Then the question also is could I have sung that song in front of God?
Well I did because when I was singing it and dancing round the lounge God was also there and let's face it He knows all about our relationships and what exactly we do, say and sing every day.

We need to remember that we have to be honest before God and not pious.
He knows what we think and feel anyway.

But that does not mean that we do not still give Him honour and respect.
It just means that I know He knows all about me and I am not going to pretend that I do not have a laugh and a dance with my husband when God has been there all the time.


Well it is my birthday on Friday and I will be opening that card again and no doubt Fred will laugh at me as I dance around the house but I'll try to not tell Jonathan when he calls this time as two years might just be too much for him to bear.    
He is a Pastor you know.




Monday, 23 June 2014

Salmon with Peppers

 Do you have a meal that you know you will probably have the ingredients you need in the house at any time?


Well this is one of those recipes because this works great with frozen salmon fillets as well as fresh ones.

I normally have everything that is needed because they are things we would use often and because we are fond of salmon I always have some in the fridge or freezer (so easy to defrost quickly).


This was the first meal my husband had after he had been so ill for days with food poisoning and lets face it he is not a great fish eater but he does love this.


So it basically is very easy to prepare and cook and in total takes about 50-60 mins

Ingredients

Salmon fillets   enough for 2 people
Red Peppers  1 per 2 people
Green Peppers   1 per 2 people
Onions    1 per 2 people
2 table spoons olive oil
8 table spoons balsamic vinegar
boiling water
Black pepper
Lime/Lemon Juice
Enough Rice for 2 people


Method

1.  Mix the oil and balsamic vinegar together in a Pyrex/casserole dish not too small.



2. Cut up onions and peppers in lengths and add to dish stirring around in the mixture.




3.  Place in a preheated hot oven for 10 mins then  add some boiling water and stir around, leave in oven for another 5 mins or until the vegetables look like they are starting to soften.

4.  Place the salmon on top of the vegetables, grind some black pepper over the salmon and then drizzle salmon with lime/lemon juice as much or as little as you like.

5.  Place dish back in oven and cook for a further 8-10 mins.

6.  Then grill on medium/high for approx. 5 mins.   Salmon should be soft but nicely browned on top.




7.  Serve Salmon and vegetables on top of rice and scoop up remaining juices from dish to pour over rice.


As you can see from the picture I had two different types of Salmon fillets this time simply because I grabbed the first two packets I found in the freezer 
(shape doesn't matter to us).

We love this meal and have it at least three times a month.  

When we want to feel even more healthy we just leave out the oil and it is fine that way too.


If you try it let me know what you think.



For a few more recipes click on through to my Recipes Page







Sunday, 22 June 2014

Why We Worship 25



I am taking time each week to ask myself "Why we worship"


We are coming to the end of our series based around the attributes of God.

                Next week will be the last one to be contemplated.


So this week I want to look at something that I really only started to think about in the last year or so.




Of course we have always thought of God as the only true God.

But here I want to think about God as God the Most High God meaning that He is Sovereign over everything.

He is in control in every situation.

So there is nothing or nobody (not even ourselves) that should come before God in all aspects of our lives.

Yes that is hard because most aspects of our lives we can quite easily say we are handing over to God but it should be all aspects of our lives.

In everything we should put God first.

In every day nothing should dethrone Him from being the King, the Lord of our lives.




All reverence must be given to God.

All honour must be given to God.

All glory must be given to God.


All worship must be given to God.



Is God the MOST HIGH GOD in your life?

Do you give Him all the worship?





Friday, 20 June 2014

Sun & Work in the Garden - Housework/Funwork 23



Northern Ireland had some great weather this week so definitely it was time for the GARDEN.



We have to be flexible here so when it is good weather we get out and tend to the garden and when it is not so good weather we do inside stuff obviously.


      So I was out in the garden every day.


          Gosh did I work hard?


MON

  • I cleaned up one of those two white PVC sun loungers that sat in our back garden since last summer.
  • I lay on that sun lounger and tried to do some work on my laptop but the sun was too bright and so I couldn't see the screen properly so gave up and went inside for a drink.
  • Later I lay on that sun lounger and read a short story by Agatha Christie.
  • Later I did put in a washing  -  well it was really too hot to work in the garden on Monday


- quote of the day from me on Facebook



TUES
  • I posted about blogging on my blog.
  • I lay on that sun lounger and read another short story by Agatha Christie.
  • I wrote a blog post based on those sun loungers in the garden for my Wednesday post
  • Later I did put in another washing
  • Then I did a little ironing  -  well it was really too hot to work in the garden again on Tuesday



WED
  • I searched for some pictures that I needed to make a collage to finish off that blog post about the sun loungers and then posted it.
  • I went out to the front garden and did some weeding until I was too hot and tired

    First Section was cleared completely of weeds

         
Next Section partially cleared of weeds

Next Section not weeded

  • I had a little fun on facebook with a few posts.
  • Later I did put in another washing
  • Then in the evening I went out to the front garden and did some more weeding and brushing up  -  well it was a bit cooler and better for working in the garden

Section on other side nearly fully cleared of weeds
and good news the badly pruned Lavender is starting to grow again.



- quote of the day from me on Facebook


THURS
  • I facetimed with our daughter in South Korea after breakfast for me and just before bedtime for her.
  • I got bananas for a special person who returns home from Morocco on Friday evening.
  • Did a lot of sorting of photographs on the computer and scrapbooking things.
  • Later I did put in another washing     
  • Then in the evening I went out to the front garden and cut the grass there  -  well it was about time I got that lawnmower out

Front lawn cut but needs some treatment


- quote of the day from me on Facebook


FRI


  • I did another washing
  • I tidied up the kitchen.
  • Did more sorting of photographs from my phone on to the computer
  • Then in the afternoon I went out to the back garden and cut the smaller section of grass there
  • Later I went back out and cut the larger section of grass at the back  

-  well I did want to get it all finished for Fred coming home 

and

I did have to get this blog post out today!


HOUSEWORK  /  FUNWORK 

Which one won out this week?

Had to be FUNWORK because the rest of my time spent indoors was spent on
 the computer or ipad!



Wednesday, 18 June 2014

Make Good Use of What you Have - A Dose of Encouragement 25



Each day when I sit at the computer in my study I will at some time turn my head to look out of the window beside me.


Now the weather in Northern Ireland is not that hot and sunny and when we do get good weather it is limited to a few days now and again during May - August.  Although as I am writing this the sun is beaming down into my back garden which is the view I have from my study window.


We are also known for our rain (although we do not get any more in the year than Delaware or Belgium - I know this because those are the other two places we have lived in and I did a bit of research - it just seems like it).


So you may be surprised to find out what is sitting in our garden since May last year (not this year).

This is the view that I have from my study




Yes those are two white PVC sun-loungers sitting in my garden.

And Yes they have sat there for over a year because we are rather lazy and didn't bother to put them away and also because we got a new BBQ last year (we used it twice) and some extra chairs to match our table so the BBQ and the chairs are now taking up the space in the garden shed where these two sun-loungers and their matching 6 recliner chairs used to be.  We gave the chairs and cushions to our son and daughter in law so that they could have something in their garden shed.


Now the point of this is that those two sun loungers always make me think of the chairs and the chairs always make me think of our Sun Room in the house we lived in, in Belgium for over 6 years.

You see when we got to Belgium we had a Sun Room but no furniture to go in it so I thought well we will probably buy a sofa for it.

But also when we got to Belgium we had garden furniture but no garden shed to keep it in and the garage was under the house so it was just not feasible to expect Fred to go down to the garage every time we would want to sit out in the back garden.

So we just sort of started off by putting the garden chairs into the Sun Room.  It was very convenient to just open the door from the Sun room to the garden and lift out whatever number of the chairs we needed.  It was so convenient that they stayed there for the whole time we lived there and we never bothered to buy proper furniture for the Sun Room.

So then you see we could say we just "made do" with what we had for the Sun Room.  

BUT

I spent many happy Monday mornings there sitting on those chairs as I prayed specifically for our kids.

Many evenings were spent sitting on those chairs with family visiting from the UK.

Many evenings were spent sitting on those chairs with other visitors from all over the world.

Many very happy occasions were spent on those chairs as our church homegroup met in our home for pot luck dinners.

Our homegroup was like our family away from our homeland.  Most of the group were from other countries having come to Belgium through work etc.  These were the people of all ages who met together on a weekly basis to worship and study God's Word together.  These were the people who looked after each other in all sorts of ways when we had no other family to turn to. These were the people who shared each others joys and heartaches and prayed together through the deep desires of our hearts.



No-one ever asked why we had garden furniture in that room.

So you see I don't think of us just "making do" in all those years;  I actually think of it as "making use of what we had" and it being a good job.

We had people of every class of life in that room and every single one of them happy to sit on those chairs.  That room was always full of smiling faces and I am thankful for the great memories that were created there.

So the next time you think you are just going to have to make do with what you have either in belongings or in the talents and the gifts that God has given you (or as you may think the not so good as other people's talents and gifts) then think of my garden furniture in my Sun Room.

Remember that you can make use of what you have and use it wisely for the benefit of yourself and of others.

Be thankful for what you have and that you are not "just making do".




Linking up with
 FELLOWSHIP FRIDAYS
 TESTIMONY TUESDAY
WHOLEHEARTED WEDNESDAYS

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Help! This Blogging Thing is not Easy!

You could end up pulling your hair out over this thing called BLOGGING.

AT THE START
 you think it's all about getting a



set up and big query is


Blogger or Wordpress?


My decision was based on
1. My son's blog was on blogger and so he could help me.
2. Our Church Website (which I help with) is on Wordpress and it drove me demented about how when I typed something in and then looked at the page neither the spacing nor size of font ever seemed to be what I had intended and pictures just seemed to go where they wanted to go and not where I tried to place them.

So I chose Blogger.
Then now over a year and a half later my husband tells me that the blogging template in wordpress might be easier to work with than the website template.  Thank you Fred for helping me sooner!!!!

Then my son tells me that there are ads on Wordpress that the blogger will not see on their blogs, so I would not be happy with that.




NEXT
after you have the blog set up you only think you have to think about what content you will put in your posts. When you get settled in to that you have to decide how often you will post to your blog.

But you haven't really got to the main hurdles yet because if you wanted to start a blog you must have had a good idea as to what the content would be and how much inspiration you have leads to how often you post.  Not necessarily!  But let's say yes you know your content and have decided how many posts each week and you have the ideas.


Then you realize there are not very many people reading this blog because even though the "whole world" can get use of the internet not everyone has discovered your blog among the millions of others.

What do you have to do to get it seen out there?


THAT'S WHEN
we start posting on facebook and twitter, provided we already have accounts, if not we have to start learning to use these sites.  Lots will even make a page on facebook to get likes and hopefully blog followers through that as well.

Everyday you need to post and tweet your blog.

So your computer will never look like this!


NEXT
you hear people talking about "oh you need to be in circles and so that means you need to get on Google Plus and it you are like me you have held out for some time because you don't really want to have to learn something new at the moment because you are rather busy with everything else.

But eventually you give in and you are then hooked into gathering people up to be in your circles and getting offended if people do not put you in their circles.


AND THAT'S NOT ALL
you have to be pinning all the time because by now you have heard that everyone should know that Pinterest is the best place to get traffic to your blog.  So your nice little pinterest boards which you had set up for your own interest now have to not only cater to you but be attractive to others so that they will follow lots of your boards and then see the pins linking to your blog and start to visit your blog and then like it because it is as attractive as your pinterest boards and then they will come back often to your blog.



Oh and then you should gather Instagram followers as well - but I definitely drew the line here and Instagram is staying personal for me.


AND THAT IS STILL NOT ALL
there are communities on google plus, groups on facebook, special Pinterest boards for groups of bloggers, and then something called Stumble Upon which I have neither stumbled upon or went looking for (yet).


AND OF COURSE BY NOW
1. you have discovered that your blog post should be full of very good pictures so you need to go take masses of photos

#BigBlackWedding

and adapt them to use on your blog



or find places on the internet to get free pics.



or start learning to create your own pictures





2. you have heard of the words "blog hop" & "linky" and you decide to google this and then your life is never the same because not only do you have to join in with loads of these but you find all these other blog posts on these linkys that you want to read
     



  3. you have realised that you are getting more comments than you thought you would but that takes more of your time because you have to read them and answer them.


BY NOW
you have wondered why you started this in the first place because it looks like it could take over your life and you have to be careful in conversations with others or else you will talk about blogs you have read and what you are doing on your blog too much.




AND THAT IS WHEN
you find out that other blogs with less traffic than yours are making money and everyone in the groups etc. are talking about sponsorship and ads and promotion and you have to take the big decision

DO I MONETIZE MY BLOG?????

I never in all my life thought I would use the word 
MONETIZE