As the name of my blog indicates, I spend a lot of time thinking about home. Of course, my Heavenly Home is the one that is eternal, so that’s where I need to lay up my treasures, and that’s the one I’m striving for. But in the meantime, I have been given this tiny piece of the here-and-now—this home on the edge of town, this family, this neighborhood—in which to serve Him. And, though this is in the earthly realm, I want the things that happen here to be investments in the Heavenly realm.

Saturday, April 18, 2020

The God of the Waves

This quote is worth revisiting . . . and pondering . . . 

But God is the God of the waves and the billows, and they are still His when they come over us; and again and again we have proved that the overwhelming thing does not overwhelm. Once more by His interposition deliverance came. We were cast down, but not destroyed. 

~ Amy Carmichael

Monday, April 13, 2020

Resurrection Sunday | 2020

What a different holiday it was, spent in isolation because of the coronavirus. At last year's Easter table, there were twenty-two people. At this year's, there were three.

But our reason to celebrate was the same! 

Christ the Lord is risen today! Alleluia!

Many years ago, we switched from "Easter baskets" to "First-Day-of-Spring Baskets," reserving Resurrection Day for spiritual emphasis in our celebrating. This year, however, it seemed right to add a little extra sweetness to the day. 

Bekah wears dresses almost every day of the year, so why not wear a pretty dress on Easter Sunday, even if you are going to be at home? 

Pretty Bekah . . . on her last day of being eighteen. (Her birthday is today!) 

Our family photo.

We worshiped with our church family . . . remotely.

Did I say there were three of us? Make that four. 🐱

We placed a lamb on our Easter table, signifying the spotless Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! 

We had a traditional Easter dinner: ham, potato salad, deviled eggs, ambrosia, and roasted asparagus. Usually my mom makes the potato salad and we all agree that it is the BEST in the world! I tried to replicate it, with a modicum of success . . . but everyone agreed that I didn't quite get it. 

We made a little coffee run in the afternoon. (Coffee is still considered an "essential service." Right?)

We watched an Easter classic, Ben Hur.

Dessert by Pepperidge Farm.

Apologies to my Facebook friends for this rerun! I hadn't planned to post any of these on my blog. I have been struggling with answering comments and with commenting on other blogs. I sometimes feel like I am just adding more words to what has already been said. I hope that my blogger friends will give me grace . . . and I promise to extend that same grace! 

But . . . I enjoy getting glimpses into people's lives during this time. I am encouraged by your efforts to keep on serving others and honoring the Lord. And so I post today with the hopes that you might be encouraged by a peek into our corner of the world. 

It will be good to look back at these days and have some lovely things to remember!

Saturday, April 11, 2020

Music of the Season

Many things about our Resurrection Day celebration will be different this year . . .
~ last year's table setting ~

~ last year's family photo ~

. . . but the reason for our celebration is the same! 

Jesus gave His life to pay the just penalty for our sins, and then He rose from the grave three days later! We serve a living Savior!

We're listening to this playlist of glorious music today. Would you like to join us? 

Monday, April 6, 2020


I am repeating a post that I wrote three years ago. Although some of the specific circumstances are different, the underlying theme seems quite appropriate for these days . . . 

     Does the road wind up-hill all the way?
          Yes, to the very end.
    Will the day's journey take the whole long day?
          From morn to night, my friend.
          ~ Christina Rossetti

image source

As bloggers, we often share the pretty parts of our lives. Beautiful children and grandchildren. Happy family gatherings. Pretty food. Freshly painted and spruced up rooms. Cheerful holiday decorations. Joyful occasions. Victories. 

When I show you those "pretty" things, they are real and they are true. I am so very blessed. 

But also real and also true is the fact that life is hard

"The road wind(s) up-hill."

Twenty-two years ago today, I delivered a stillborn baby, a little girl whom we named Kara Joy. Two days before, I had gone for a routine sonogram at 19 weeks of pregnancy and we were stunned to learn that our baby had no heartbeat. (There had been a normal heartbeat at my prenatal appointment a few weeks earlier.)

It rocked my world, and left me with a raw, jagged wound. Yes, I rested in my Savior, knowing that God is only always good, but my mother-heart ached for many years.

Life is hard. 

As we ran an errand together this week, I said to Kati, "This has been a hard year so far."

It has. 

Among our circle, since the year began there has been illness . . . yucky-but-relatively-quick viruses, and also long term serious illness. There have been muddled situations. Hurt feelings. Discouragement. A friend lost her job suddenly. Someone we love has come to the end of himself battling addiction; everyone in his family is affected. Another friend lost his father. Another friend has seen her husband's health decline even further, stretching their family's time and resources precariously thin.

Life is hard. 

At the beginning of this week, we had to say good-bye to our sweet boy kitty, Puss. He had lost quite a bit of weight over the winter. It turns out he had (among other things) FIV. He battled one infection after another and then took a turn for the worse over the weekend.

Oh, I know that Puss is an animal and I am not equating the loss of a pet with the pain of human loss or suffering or addiction. But, if you are an animal lover, you know that there is heartache when a beloved fur baby passes. It hurts.

Yes, life is hard. 

Please don't think that this is a sob story. I do not tell you these things so that you will feel sorry for me. Your own heartache, your loss, your struggles may be much greater than mine. I only tell you to acknowledge we are all on that up-hill road.

But, if we belong to Jesus, we are not without hope!

I certainly don't pretend to know the "why" of all my struggles, much less yours. But might I suggest that a part of the answer is so that we don't get too comfortable here? That our hearts might be kept longing for a better place?

"Heaven is not here, it's There. If we were given all we wanted here, our hearts would settle for this world rather than the next." ~ Elisabeth Elliot

Even as we walk the road that winds up-hill, we can know that He is with us. "Lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world." "For He Himself has said, 'I will never leave you nor forsake you.'"

We do not walk the road alone.

Let us live as those whose hearts are longing for Heaven, for the road will wind up-hill to the very end.

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Quarantine Cooking

One thing about          all three of us          being inside          all the time 

is that there is time (and desire) to cook and enjoy nice meals together. 

One of the projects I had planned to over the winter was organizing my recipe collection, but winter was busy-busy and I never got around to it. Now, however, time is something that I do have so I am slowly sifting through my loose recipes, putting them into my recipe binders according to category, and weeding out many recipes that I have not used since I put them in those binders seven or eight years ago. In the process, I am finding some new recipes to try.

We're trying not to go to the grocery store more often than necessary, so when we have a heap of kale or big bundles of asparagus or a box of mushrooms, I find ways to use them in different dishes. So in addition to trying new recipes, I am cooking creatively to use what I have. 

roasted chicken, potatoes, garlic, and rosemary: roasted asparagus

orecchiette with Alfredo sauce, mushrooms, and asparagus

I am also taking requests, so I am making some tried-and-true dishes too. (Lots of soup!) 

I often double my amounts, sometimes getting two (or even three!) meals out of one dish or one pot of soup. We also like eating leftovers for lunch. 

vegetable-beef soup with popovers

copycat recipe ~ Olive Garden's Zuppa Toscana
(We thought it tasted like the real deal)

If the evening is warm, we eat on the sun porch, enjoying the fresh air and the birdsong.

I like to use my pretty dishes. As always, and maybe even more so during self-isolation, dinnertime is a special time of the day, a time to connect, a time to celebrate God's good gifts. 

 slow cooker pork and sauerkraut

One thing that I am not doing is baking. There are only three of us, and Ron is diabetic, so we don't need large amounts of carbs and sweets. We bake when we have gatherings, but . . . social isolation. (I'm not saying that we have no sweets in the house and I am not saying that Bekah and I have not eaten a whole package of Pepperidge Farm cookies. Just that we are not baking.)

sliders with leftover pork; salad

This is one of the tried-and-true recipes . . . a favorite soup introduced to us years ago by my dear daughter-in-law Sarah. Before she and Ryan were even dating, she brought it to a church soup supper and it was a hit! It is a true comfort food, creamy and full of flavor. I have made it countless times and it never fails to bring a smile. 



1 small onion
1 tablespoon butter
3 cups chicken broth
3 medium carrots, peeled, ¼-inch slices
2 medium potatoes, cubed
2 cups cooked chicken
2 tablespoons parsley
salt/pepper to taste
 ¼ flour
1 cup milk
1 8-oz. package cream cheese


1) Saute onion and butter.

2) Add broth, carrots, and potatoes. Bring to boil.

3) Reduce heat. Cover; simmer 15 minutes or until veggies are tender.

4) Add chicken, salt, pepper, and parsley; heat through.

5) Combine flour and milk until smooth. Add and bring to boil. Cook and stir until thick.

6) Reduce heat; add cream cheese. Stir until melted.

~ I always double this recipe (or more if we're having guests). It is so good that I want leftovers!
~ Potatoes can be peeled or unpeeled.
~ We kind of like it when the cream cheese is almost-but-not-quite melted. 

What is happening in your quarantine kitchen? Are you cooking more? Less? Are you baking yummy things? Do tell! 

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...