Turn Your Eyes

CCMV Core Leaders Fall Brunch 002Currently, it’s 57 degrees and raining.  This doesn’t stop me from enjoying the weather or the day.  Enjoying the sound of the rain rustling in the trees and feeling the cool crisp air today requires a change of heart and a turning so to speak. Realizing that we can enjoy the little things in life independent of the annoying troubles we may face throughout the day.

So often we allow life’s seemingly negative jabs control our day and what we decide to enjoy. In the quiet of this day all I can hear is raindrops and birds singing.  I can’t hear the many voices that compete with this kind of peace.  It was my choice…

Choose to focus on the beauty of LIFE  and the desire to OVERCOME your obstacles and trials will grow strong in determination.




Loving Our Neighbor

Yellow Rose

Yellow Rose…symbol of friendship

When you come in to the presence of another, there is a connection that happens.  Depending on the hearts of the two people, this connection can either be a positive one or a negative one.  Lately, as I am out and about, I sense a saddened decline in making eye to eye contact.   The one universal need among all people, I believe is love.  One may tend to want to protect, become exclusive, and not relish the extending of themselves for the sake of time.

In order to love, we make contact… A simple smile is sometimes all we need to do.   Loving our neighbor is hard business…it requires effort and care.  It requires genuine sincerity and humbleness.  Our neighbor is not just the people we know but those around us on our daily journey too.

Next time you are in the grocery store, Kohl’s or the local deli, take a chance and make a connection with your neighbor.  You may be the only encouragement they receive all day, and who knows, you may find a lifetime friend!

Oh Baby! Best Ham and Pickle Party Dish

ham and pickles

Easy to make and fun party favor!

My family has always had a flair for the dramatic, and one of those people was my Uncle Howard.   Uncle Howard was married to Sue, a beautiful woman, whom I thought looked much like Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis.  They lived in Sidney, New York, where Uncle Howard was the Principle of an elementary school, and a part time actor in the theatre.   After retiring to Florida, he acquired the lead part in “The Man Who Came to Dinner” in local theatre.  How appropriate because not only was he in the Who’s Who in America, but he could cook!!  Oh, you should have seen his beautiful silver collection and the night he brought it out to serve us Cherries Jubilee.  ”Oh Baby!” as he would often say!  As a young child,  I was completely impressed.  Well, Uncle Howard had a lot of specialties and hosted many dinner parties.  I would like to honor him with a very simple yet fantastic hord’oeuvres he taught me to make; Ham/Cream Cheese/Pickle Hord’oeuvres… Oh Baby!

Ham/Cream Cheese/Pickle Hord’oeuvre

10 slices of thick Virginia Baked Deli Ham

1 to 2 packages of Philadelphia Cream Cheese

1 jar of Vlasic Pickles

1 box of colorful toothpicks

Take a paper towel and dry each piece of Ham.  Smooth on about a tablespoon of  Philadelphia Cream Cheese onto each piece of ham.  Take a Vlasic pickle and roll onto the ham and cream cheese forming a log.  Place 4 or 5 colorful toothpicks into the pickle log and place in refrigerator overnight covered in tin foil.  Just before your party, slice the pickle log in between the toothpicks and serve on a beautiful serving tray.  Easy and delicious!

Making Room for All Things New

Ordinary to Extraordinary 004Moving really brings life into perspective.  We travel through life with so many “things.”   Recently we had to make a decision.  My husband and I moved from our cozy surroundings (2300 sq. ft.) in Florida to a 1200 sq. ft. apartment (temporary) in Birmingham, Alabama.  My heart sank as I realized I couldn’t keep everything.  Purging was coming.

Jim going through some of our

Jim going through some of our “stuff”

As we began making  decisions about what would stay and what would go, the overwhelming truth hit us… things we thought we needed were holding us back from living a life of simplicity and ease.  When box after box came off of the moving truck we KNEW it would not all fit into our new life.  So what did we do?  We gave some things away, we donated the rest and purposed to only live with what we absolutely need and love.       Wow!  That felt good and honestly we LOVE the new simplified and cozy look.    You could say we’re “making room”  for something new.

Don’t let the past hold you…let go and open the door to the new thing God wants to do!