Sunday, May 21, 2017

Creativity is a Spiritual Practice


A spiritual practice or spiritual discipline (often including spiritual exercises) is the regular or full time performance of actions and activities undertaken for the purpose of inducing spiritual experiences and cultivating spiritual development. - Wikipedia

For me, Sunday mornings are used for reflection and meditation. I often retreat to my backyard. It's a haven for me. Our yard is filled with tall trees, perfect places for the birds to nest and sing. Even inside my kitchen through the screen door I can hear the sounds of nature. And looking out the kitchen window, I can see the waterfall coming off the pond. Water cascading downward sending ripples through out, only to repeat the process time and time again.

I often walk around the yard admiring the beauty around me. Beauty to be found in the simplest of things. My rose bushes, the three ponds, and the birds congregated at the feeders all bring a smile to my face. These things make me happy. And in turn, connect me with the divine. It's in these moments, camera in hand my passion of nature photography takes over.

I crave this kind of intimacy. I deeply miss attending church services, but for right now, this is the season in my life. (In case you missed my post about what's going on in my life, you can catch up here).

life update

Phillipians 4:8 says - "And now brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise."

I hope you too will cultivate happiness and gratitude in the everyday. The mundane. The simple and the ordinary. And in focusing your thoughts and seeing the beauty in the present moment, you too will become connected with the universe and in turn the divine.

Welcome to Sunday morning.

And just "be"

In warmth,
Anna

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Baking


Hi, friends. I hope this finds you doing well. Time seems to be slipping away from me lately. I spent yesterday morning in my kitchen baking blueberry muffins and banana bread. Baking is very theraputic for me. It helps me focus my thoughts which have been all over the place as of late.

My parents are enjoying their days. They've hired a housekeeper to help clean and organize the house. This has really helped Mom out tremendously since she doesn't have as much energy as she used to. I'm still going over to their house multiple times a day, running their errands and providing their meals. My oldest sister made the 5 hour drive up today to take them to Dads doctor appointment tomorrow. And she brought some meals that she'd prepared and frozen in advance which will help me in caring for them. I'm so grateful for the help.

Please keep us in your prayers.

I'm often referencing the bible verse Isaiah 43:2-3.

"When you go through deep waters,
 I will be with you. 
When you go through rivers of difficulty, 
you will not drown. 
When you walk through the fire of oppression, 
you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you.
For I am the Lord, your God."
Isaiah 43:2-3 NLT

Thanks be to God!

I will share my banana bread recipe with you soon.

All my love,
Anna

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Meatloaf Recipe


This meatloaf recipe has been in our family for years. So suffice to say when I suggested making it for my parents for their dinner, they were quite pleased.

In case you missed my last post, you can get caught up here.
Life Update

I paired it with sautéed squash and zucchini. I melted a Tablesoon of butter in a skillet, then added diced onion. On low, I let the onion cook down then added the veggies. I sautéed them, then added a dash of salt and pepper. Yum!
 I love that we're getting into the season of fresh veggies and fruits. (Stay tuned for an awesome recipe for fat-free, crispy, oven baked french fries).

Ingredients



2 lbs lean ground beef
2/3 cup dry bread crumbs ( Crushed crackers can be substituted)
1 envelope Onion Soup Mix
2 eggs, beaten
1-8 ounce can tomato sauce
1/4 tsp. pepper
1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. dry mustard

Directions

Mix beaten eggs, tomato sauce with meat. Mix dry bread crumbs, onion soup and seasonings, add to meat and mix well.


Shape mixture into meat loaf shape. Place into a baking bag following instructions on the box. (I like to add a little ketchup on the top).


Bake 1 to 1-1/4 hours. Let rest 5 to 10 minutes before slicing.

*Note- If you lack dry mustard, you can substitute regular mustard.


I hope you love this meatloaf as much as our family does.

See you soon,
Anna