Monday, April 29, 2013

Scary Evening

Saturday was Jason's 40th birthday and he was flying back from a trip to Florida. He was suppose to land at 5:45 so the boys and I could pick him up and have plenty of time for a birthday dinner. I checked the flight status before I left and it said it had already landed, so we jumped in the car to head to the airport. At our house it was dark and cloudy but only sprinkling, but by the time we got to the exit for the airport, we were in torrential rains, so much so that the road the airport is on was flooded. There were two cars stranded in the street with water up to the tops of their tires. So we pulled in a gas station along with another 20 cars to regroup.

Now, have I mentioned that my sweet middle child has a spirit of fear and had already said before we left he didn't want to go because of the rain. So now that he has seen a car almost floating, he loses it and is crying in the back seat. I am offended. Dude, do not trust me? Do you really think Mommy would drive you into that and put my children in danger? Do you not trust God to take care of us and give me wisdom? He said he didn't understand why God would allow it to rain that much and was very concerned about what happened to the people in the cars. I said they probably got out and walked to the gas station and that God needed it to rain but He had not designed the sewer system that wasn't working properly. It didn't help.

About that time we get a text from J that he is on the tarmac at the Corpus Christi airport. Nice. I apparently missed that they had landed... at the Corpus airport. So we come back home. Cade was so relieved to get in the house. But now we wait. He eventually says they are leaving at 8:30 and eventually the Southwest airlines website catches up and agrees that they have left Corpus. So I call my sweet neighbor to come over and sit with the kids because I am not taking them back on that journey, now in the dark. And off I go, in the dark and rainy night by myself to a sketchy part of town with a cell phone that I now notice is about to die. Not the smartest choice I've made. And Cade is afraid for my life that I will never come home.

It took me three exits to find a road to the airport that wasn't flooded. J is landed now and is calling me telling me where to go, but I am really bad with directions, and really bad driving in places that I'm not familiar with. So now, I'm crying. But I caught myself before I completely lost it, and realized that now I'm at the place Cade was. Do I not trust God to take care of me? Do I not trust him to be holding on to me while I'm making this drive? I of course made it just fine to the airport and was so relieved to see my husband coming to the car, and gladly changed seats to let him drive. We got home at 10:30, not the best birthday night for sure, but quite memorable. And I got a spiritual lesson in the process. I'm still a child sometimes when it comes to my trust level. Oh Father, forgive my lack of trust in your protection and guidance and thank you for bringing us home safely. You are good.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

New Recipes that Worked!

I have tried four new recipes off of Pinterest the past two weeks. J wishes I would just stick with what I know, but I get so bored sometimes. But three of the recipes made it into my cookbook. One of them was a really big hit, two of us went back for seconds! Yipee! Here they are!

Chicken Spaghetti:

  • 8 ounces angel hair pasta
  • 2 cups chopped, grilled chicken or 1 large can of chicken (I used canned)
  • 1 can (10 3/4 ounces) cream of mushroom soup (98% fat free or regular)
  • 1 can (10 3/4 ounces) cream of chicken soup (98% fat free or regular)
  • 1 can (10 ounces) Rotel diced tomatoes and green chiles, undrained
  • 8 ounces sour cream
  • Sprinkling of Parmesan or Mexican-blend cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Boil pasta as package directs and drain. Mix all other ingredients (except cheese), add to cooked pasta and put in a 9" x 13" baking dish. Cover with foil and bake 30 minutes or until hot and bubbly. Sprinkle with your choice of cheese and return to oven to melt.
Crockpot Chicken Tacos
Recipe from
Tasty Kitchen

Serves: ~12 people

1 Envelope Taco Seasoning (I use Old El Paso Reduced Sodium)
6 Pieces Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts
1 16-ounce jar Salsa (I switch between brands, but Newman's Own or Pace are my favorites)

Dump everything into a crock pot and give it a little stir to blend the seasoning with the salsa. You do not need to add any water to the taco seasoning. Cook on high for 4 to 6 hours or on low for 6 to 8 hours. When done, the chicken should shred easily when stirred with a fork.

For tacos, serve the chicken with soft flour tortillas, guacamole, lettuce, shredded cheese and/or sour cream. This is very versatile and can be used for enchiladas, nachos, tostadas, quesadillas, etc. Any leftover chicken can then be used for tortilla soup (make it the next day or freeze the chicken to use at a later time).

I halved the recipe for us and still had some chicken left over for the next day and froze some to use in soup later.

And the best one from last night! This is so easy and flexible, no measuring utensils needed and made in one pan!

Chicken Parmesan Casserole
  • chicken breasts (however many you want/need, I did 4)
  • olive oil (just one dollop, I drizzled a little all over)
  • minced garlic (a smattering…a little more than a smattering if you really like garlic)
  • red pepper flakes (leave these out if you don’t like any heat)
  • marinara sauce (I used one jar)
  • parmesan cheese
  • mozzarella cheese (you will need twice as much mozzarella as Parmesan)
  • croutons (I used bread crumbs because that's what I had)

  • I cut the chicken in to three chunks, but you could leave them whole or cut them into bite size pieces. I drizzles olive oil, a few dollops of minced garlic, sprinkle of red pepper flakes and then pour over the marinara sauce. Spread mozzarella cheese and parmesan cheese over the top 2 to 1 ratio. But I had an Italian cheese mix and just used it. Then I sprinkled bread crumbs over that and then more cheese. I will try to use croutons crushed up next time to add more crunch. Bake at 350 for 30 minutes. I served it over angel hair pasta with green beans. All the men loved it, except the one who won't eat anything. But when they go back for seconds, that is a victory for me!

    Wednesday, April 10, 2013

    Delicious Poison

    I am allergic to corn. Not like deathly, but it does affect me pretty noticeably when I eat it. I found out when Cooper was a baby and we had him tested. It had been many years since I had been allergy tested, so I put myself through that to see if that was causing some of my health problems. Corn was one of four foods I am allergic to, but its the most difficult to deal with. I LOVE tortilla chips with hot sauce, especially at Chili's. I lost 5 pounds immediately when I cut out all the junk food with corn syrup in it. I don't eat kernel corn anymore and don't really miss it. But I do miss corn on the cob. There's something southern and comforting about eating corn on the cob with butter and those little yellow corn shaped sticks stuck in the ends. Yum.

    I made corn on the cob for the men the other night and abstained... until I was cleaning up after dinner and Campbell's ear still had half of the corn left on it. I ate one bite just to see if I had cooked it correctly. And then preceded to finish it. With each bite I was having an internal struggle. "Oh my gosh, this is so good! I forgot how sweet and yummy corn on the cob is. Stop Christy. Its poison to your body. You are going to pay for this tomorrow." On and on as I finished off the corn and threw the beautiful empty cob into the trashcan.

    I woke up the next morning with my right hand on fire. I have eczema and the worst spot is my hand. I know I have been eating the wrong things and am stressed when it flares up. As my hand was burning and I was needing some serious self control to not scratch I had to admit I did it to myself. No one else to blame it on but me. It wasn't Campbell's fault for not finishing it. All me. And I was hit with a spiritual comparison.

    That decision I made to eat the corn despite knowing what the consequences were, was a direct in my face bad choice. But how many times do I make those types of decisions daily with less direct things. Sometimes I make those choices so fast I don't even realize its a choice. Do I gossip about that friend, even just a quick remark? Do I watch that show that is either bad for me to watch or simply a waste of my time? Do I lose my patience with my kids? They deserve it, its their fault. No, its not their fault how I choose to respond. Do I ignore that person even though God is clearly telling me to say hello and ask about their day? Do I complain about something that is out of my control or have a positive contented attitude about it? So many choices I make daily. Am I choosing to put that poison in my body because at face value its a beautiful delicious thing, even good to some people, but not so good for me.

    1 John 2:15-17 "Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world. And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever."

    I know God made corn, but for me its a desire of the flesh. A wonderfully delicious desire of the flesh that is not good for me. Make a good choice!

    Monday, April 01, 2013

    Easter Battle

    I don't think it is just me. If it is, humor me. But Sunday mornings in our house are harder than school days as far as getting ready and getting out the door without killing each other. Jason is gone before we get up so its just me and the boys, and on school days they do most things without me having to stay on them. But Sunday mornings are just rough. And Easter Sunday morning for the last two years that I can remember, turned into a war, a battle of wills. Clothes don't work, things break or spill, my normally mostly obedient children become terrors, and by the time I get to church, I have to pray for my soul. Yesterday was the worst ever. And it took the whole worship time for me to get calmed down. I told myself it was a demon trying to keep me from coming to church, but that wasn't optional, so why was I being bothered. But then I realized I missed out on the whole time of worshiping my Savior because of my bad attitude and angry bitterness. That stupid little evil thing won that battle.

    God has been showing me something this past week in His word and it all came together today when I thought about my morning. Jesus' last meal with his disciples tends to be portrayed as a sweet time of fellowship between Jesus and his closest brothers, and I'm sure some of it was. But the other day I was reading in Luke about the Last Supper and I realized that's not was it was at all. Jesus talked about how his body was about to be broken, his blood spilled. He talked about how someone was about to betray him, and someone else was about to deny him. He actually told his men to make sure they had some swords, two would be enough. He was preparing them for battle. He knew what was coming and he was preparing them the best he could.

    The next time all the disciples were with Jesus was after his resurrection. They were all mourning and wondering what had happened. It was not what they were expecting. The entry from my Jesus Calling book yesterday says, "When I appeared to my disciples after the resurrection, it was Peace that I communicated first of all. I knew this was their deepest need: to calm their fears and clear their minds."  He said "Peace be with you."

    I love that. Peace. Peace after a battle. Battles will happen, they will come. He wants us to spend time with him so that we are prepared for those battles. And then He is waiting to offer us peace. Peace when we are confused about what that was that just happened to us. Peace because even when it feels like he wasn't around when we needed him, he was. Peace when we don't understand and we are worn out and tired from the battles.

    My Easter morning battle was very minor compared to most. I know that. But I love it when God teaches me something in the minor times so when the major ones come, I am prepared. Prepared for the next battle that comes and comforted by his Peace!