Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Sharing Your Zucchini Bread

I love zucchini bread. There’s nothing like it in the world. Soft summertime goodness with butter spread on top. I could eat a whole loaf all by myself.

So when I baked the first loaf of the season, somehow it stayed quietly hidden on the shelf of my refrigerator while a couple dozen friends came and went during a get-together this month. A crazy-fun day and night of sports and fireworks and food, nonstop talking and laughter…but no zucchini bread.
In my defense, I really didn’t think much about it the whole time. Yet after they left, visions of sugarplums  zucchini bread danced through my head and I happily remembered the loaf on that second shelf.
But I was about to eat a slice of humble pie instead.
Read the rest of this article at The Catholic Young Woman

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Monday, July 16, 2012

Sweet Summertime-- An Update

We're in the double digits of the month of July. Mid-summer...Mid-year...Really?! Sweet summertime seems to keep me from blogging as much these days. I miss writing but have lately been squeezing it in here and there in the evenings, which makes my soul happy. I’m also scribbling over at The Catholic Young Woman—come on over anytime!
snazzy D.I.Y. projects
Life is always beautiful when we are given the eyes to see it and the heart to receive it…and the grace to transform it. I'm so incredibly thankful for the beauty and joy I'm finding this summer (or is it finding me?)...

my favorite spot in the backyard (garage sale find!!)

Family time is the best!

beautiful girlfriends sharing breakfast and fellowship-- thanks, S., for the yummy cooking!

books and writing...blissful
volleyball with friends skies and sunshine

Learning mercy in a deeper way
old-fashioned village tour with V.

and, oh yeah...did I mention falling in love with this man?!
(my dog kinda fell in love with him, too)

Serving with and loving these teens on the Y.E.S. project weekend 
Getting muddy at the Warrior Dash!
I'm absolutely delighted with the blessings and joy of the summertime, but there are plenty of mistakes and struggles and seeking that is going on among them. Praise God for His loving Fatherhood, His saving graces, and His Spirit that reaches down and gently leads one day at a time, knowing my weakness and being my strength. He never gives up on His beloved children. Wonderful Abba.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Wisdom for Wednesdays

"God did not tell us to follow Him because He needed our help, but because he knew that loving Him would make us whole."

-St. Irenaeus

Friday, July 6, 2012


It’s a usual Friday morning as I watch our echocardiogram technician perform an echo ultrasound on a patient’s heart. I hear the familiar whoosh of the transducer as it locates the different valves and the ventricles of the heart. I’ve seen these pictures before but they never fail to leave me spellbound and hushed as I watch a beating heart pump life-giving blood in a human body.

Later that morning, I sit at a computer, scanning a heart monitor a worn by a patient for 48 hours. Every beat flashes before my eyes on the screen as I search for any abnormal rhythms that could be a cause of his symptoms. Analyzing the rates and forms and rhythms of someone’s heartbeat has become a comfortable routine for me…yet today I’m in awe as I’m reminded that every beat I see is giving someone life.
I turn on some praise music as I scan. The lyrics of the refrain reverberate in my soul, “Lord I’m amazed by You. Lord, I’m amazed by You. How you love me.”
As 118, 091 beats pass by, I’m amazed anew at the complexity of the human body, of the human heart. My amazement lifts my mind to the One who created it, Who keeps it in existence—every breath, every heartbeat.
I place my hand on my own heart. Every beat is a sign of His love. I feel the steady rhythm pulsing with life-giving blood—from One who is life-giving Love. Now you try. Place your hand over your heart right now. (It’s okay—no one’s looking. And if they are, ask them to join you.) Feel the strength of each beat and know that He loves you. You’ve heard it and you know it, but let. it. sink. in. Every beat is a sign of His desire for you to live and know you are loved. A sign of His desire to live in you and for your hearts to beat as one.
May we be convinced of that, comforted by it, and inspired to share that truth with everyone we meet.
Father. I have no words. Only a heart that desires to beat for you. To receive your love more deeply and share it more freely. Thank you for this amazing love.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Wisdom for Wednesdays

"There is not a shadow of right in the general government to intermeddle in religion. Its least interference with it would be a most flagrant usurpation."
-James Madison, Founding Father and author of the Bill of Rights

(Pray with me for religious liberty! We love our America!)

Monday, July 2, 2012

When Hearts Bleed

Jumbled thoughts and emotions crash through my mind as I sit silently in the car, reflecting on the events of the week. Life. New life in the form of a 6-pound newborn we visit in a cramped apartment with a couple struggling to make a living. He notices the cigarettes and the cable TV. I notice the unmarried parents. Bad choices, not bad people. It’s still a child. Despite their choices they love her. She is a gift.

But my heart stills hurts as I see the beauty of new life and family.
Because a friend’s body and heart are bleeding this weekend as she fears the loss of her baby inside.
My body and heart are bleeding as I struggle with PCOS and the possibility of not bearing my own children.
It doesn’t feel fair. To see their gift of a precious child while we bleed and pray and hope. Then I remember the child is just that—a gift. Life is a gift. Not earned. God doesn’t owe anything to me. Or to my friend. Or this couple. Every breath—mine, hers, theirs, the newborn’s—is a gift. Life itself is a gift that has been given. Not only life today, but life eternal. So my heart quiets.
I bring all these to the Lord in prayer. My gaze falls on the crucifix. He hangs there bleeding. Another gift. For me. For her. For them. We bleed and fear. He bleeds to conquer fear. He looks at us from the cross and later risen from the tomb, saying “Be not afraid, for I am with you.”
Today this is enough. To know He gives every breath, every moment of life, as a gift. Given with immeasurable, inexhaustible love.
This is enough.