May 22, 2017

Making Forgiveness Easier



Forgiveness is easy, when compared to the correct subject.

Life is relative.  What is easy for some is very difficult for others.  Math is a great example.  My two boys with autism love math.  It is very easy for them to grasp and compute.  They both took harder math classes in high school than I ever did in college.  Oh yeah, I did not take ANY math class in college because trigonometry in high school was enough for me.  I muddled through that class after endless hours of studying.  My sons breeze through those calculations without effort.  I wish I had that ability.

My boys roll their eyes at me, not understanding how I can’t grasp the simple concepts.

In contrast, I enjoy writing. It can be fun, even a welcomed challenge to me.  For my boys, writing is downright painful.  They’d rather do their Saturday chores than write.  They will even do MY chores to procrastinate that tedious task of putting words on paper.  Once they sit down to write, the dead would complain about my kids’ groans that permeate the air.  My sons equate writing to a medieval torture, and should be outlawed.

I roll my eyes at them, not understanding how they can’t grasp the simple concepts.

Then there’s forgiveness.  Admitting we are wrong is a cinch, and proclaiming our bad habits is preferred!   We can do those easily instead of letting go of a grudge against someone who has hurt us.  How can we not see that forgiveness lets us live free from angst?

Christ may be rolling his eyes as to why we can’t grasp the simple concept.

To make it easier, just compare forgiveness to a dreaded issue, like math or writing.  Maybe then we can take those baby steps and find it easier to forgive.


May 17, 2017

ImPerfect Motherhood

I told my then two year old son, Nick, to use his fork while eating.  He complied.  He picked up his fork in his right hand, and proceeded to feed himself with his left hand.  Not exactly what I pictured or expected, but he did what he was suppose to do.

That illustrates motherhood.  Not exactly what I expected, but what it is suppose to be.

I've not been a perfect mom, but I've been busy raising perfect children, five boys to be exact.  It is a work in progress.  I must continually "guide" my perfect boys.  Correct them, admonish, encourage, enlighten, cheer, etc.  The list is endless, but at some point, they will be perfect young men.  HA.  A mom must have a sense of humor.

My boys are almost grown.  If I could do it over again or give a young mom advice, I'd not sweat the small stuff.  However, I'd pay attention to the small stuff.  It's those silly moments of mistakes or unpredictable moments that make the memories.

One of my favorites was five years ago.  I purchased raw milk to the tune of $10 a gallon.  I told my boys that they had to be careful to not spill.  Of course, one of them spilled the full glass of "white gold", and they all became statues.  No one said a word, but simultaneously, they all moved their plates and started lapping up the spilled milk off the counter.  It was the funniest moment.  My boys became human vacuums, and there was not much milk left to clean.  Not one drop hit the floor.

And they were shocked when I laughed.



Then there was the time I was teaching the boys how to sort laundry and load the washing machine.  Sort by color and run a full load.  So my Nick, about ten at the time, sorted the whites and the darks.  Since neither load was full, he put both loads in, but the whites on one side and the darks on the other.  Then he ran the machine.  I had been home to see the loads sorted, but then left, thinking he had it down.  The picture tells a different story. 

To read that full story, click here.

Again, I had to laugh, and I kept teaching.

I was not always laughing.  I have shed many tears.  My heart broke when my youngest three were diagnosed with autism.  Working with teachers, therapists, and doctors, even priests, and family members... my boys are working or going to college, something beyond what the specialists thought ten plus years ago.

Prayer and laughter are a must to any mama.  We all have our journeys with our children.  Each one special.  Love them and enjoy them.  They grow up too fast.  The days go slowly, but the years speed by quickly.

I now lament the two miscarriages more than when they occurred.  I'd have a 14 and a 4 year old.  Of course, they'd be boys.  Garrett and Caleb.  I can only dream what their lives would have been, but this is also a part of motherhood.

A mother's love is the only love that, if successful, is the parting of the two.  Three of my boys have moved out.  They have had their struggles, but they call and we talk.  Maybe they take my advice or not.  That is ok.  I have done my best, and they are young men making their way in the world.

Now I look forward to grandchildren. Yes I have two, but I'd love more.  


May 15, 2017

Stay Strong, Moms!!



We can do it !  

No matter if you homeschool or send kids to school, this time of year can be rough.

The finish line is in sight, so keep up the hard work!!




May 12, 2017

Friday Feasting: Quick and Easy Chicken Packets


Quick and Easy Chicken Packets

"A quick way to use up leftover rotisserie chicken. And makes a great chicken salad sandwich, too" 

Ingredient

3 C cooked chicken, chopped
1 8 oz pkg cream cheese, softened (or chevre if you have it)
2 Tbsp milk
2 Tbsp fresh chives
1 tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
2 tubes of crescent rolls (or homemade biscuit dough)
4 TBSP butter
½ C seasoned panko bread crumbs

Directions

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In medium bowl, add cream cheese, milk, chives, salt and pepper. Mix until smooth. Add chicken and combine. Set aside until ready.

2.  Open tubes of crescent rolls and unwind. Pull apart four sections, leaving two triangles together to form a rectangle. Pinch seams of two triangles together. You will have four rectangles per tube of crescent rolls. Flour counter and roll out each section to about a 4x6” size. If you have littles, just use ONE triangle instead of two. This way you will have, say, 6 large packets and 4 small packets.


3.  Using a #40 dough scoop add 2 scoops (or, approximately 2 TBSP) chicken mixture to the middle of each dough piece.  Fold over edges and sealing with wet fingers. Brush top with melted butter and sprinkle with panko. Bake 350 degrees for 20 minutes, or until brown. Serve with carrot coins and a side salad.




May 5, 2017

Friday Feasting: Indian Roasted Tofu


Indian Roasted Tofu 

Ingredients

1 lb tofu, firm
1 med sweet potato
1 med eggplant
1 red or orange (or red/yellow) bell pepper
1 large onion
Olive oil
Salt
Pepper
2 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp minced gingerroot
2 tbsp cornstarch
1 C water, divided
½ C soy sauce
1 tbsp sugar
1 tsp garam masala
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
Cooked rice

Directions

1.  Press tofu for 30 minutes to remove water excess. Slice into cubes and lay out on cookie sheet in single layer. Drizzle with olive oil; season with salt and pepper and toss to combine. Roast in oven at 425 degrees for 20 minutes, then turn and roast for additional 10 minutes or until brown.


2.  Peel sweet potato and eggplant, then cut into cubes. Toss with olive oil, salt and pepper then put on cookie sheet and spread in a single layer.  Cut bell pepper into strips, then cut in half. Cut onion into chunks. Toss all with olive oil to coat, salt and pepper. Lay out in single layer on another cookie sheet and roast for 20 minutes. Toss then return to oven for another 10 minutes.

3.  In a skillet over medium heat, add garlic and cook until fragrant, about a minute. Add gingerrrot, soy sauce, ½ c water, sugar, garam masala and cayenne pepper. Stir until heated, about a minute.  Mix cornstarch with ½ c water in a cup and slowly add HALF to skillet, stirring. Depending on how thick you like the sauce will determine how much cornstarch mixture to add. You may not need all of it. Cook for one minute then add in roasted veggies, toss to coat, then add roasted tofu. Toss gently so tofu doesn’t break up. Remove from heat. Serve over rice.