Friday, April 30, 2010

Kissing, Dancing and Being Honest

It's been a few days since I last posted. I have no excuse but to say that we haven't felt much like celebrating lately. We're at that part in our "ministry transition"/waiting adventure that well, to put it bluntly, pretty much sucks. Wednesday was a pretty hard day, filled with prayers for encouragement, tears of discouragement, stomach's churning witn anxiety, and long deep talks about our future. It was also "Kiss Your Mate" day. My kisses turned out to be kisses of comfort on tear stained cheeks. From him, and for him.

Thursday dawned after a rather sleepless night and nothing had changed. No answers, just pleas to the Lord that we receive some affirmation. Something to remind us He was there. Something to lift our spirits. Words of encouragement flooded in from family, friends, and collegeaus, and at the end of the day, though we had no clear answers, we at least felt a little better. And so we danced. It was International Dance Day.

Today's day of celebration is focused on being honest (Be Honest Day), and thus this post. My honest words in this blog today is that life is hard. Life is unpredictable. Life can kick you in the gut.


God is faithful.

I tuned into the latest album from Steven Curtis Chapman while I worked today, and these lyrics -- written at a time in his life when he was deep in the grief of losing his 5 year old daughter -- hit me hard. May they speak to you, where ever you are at today.

I am broken, I am bleeding,
I'm scared and I'm confused,
but You are faithful.
Yes You are faithful.
I am weary, unbelieving.
God please help my unbelief!
Cuz You are faithful.
Yes You are faithful.

I will proclaim it to the world.
I will declare it to my heart
and sing it when the sun is shining.
I will scream it in the dark.

You are faithful!
You are faithful!
When you give and when You take away,
even then still Your name is faithful!
You are faithful!

And with everything inside of me,
I am choosing to believe You are faithful.

I am waiting for the rescue
that I know is sure to come,
cuz You are faithful.
Yes You are faithful.
I've dropped anchor in Your promises,
and I am holding on,
cuz You are faithful.
God You are faithful.

Though I cannot have the answer
that I'm wanting to demand,
I'll remember You are God
and everything is in Your hand.
In Your hands you hold the sun,
the moon, the stars up in the sky,
for the sake of Love, You hung Your own Son
on the die...

You are faithful...
Yes, You are faithful...
When you give and when You take away,
even then, great is Your faithfulness!
Great is Your faithfulness!

How have you celebrated life over the past few days?

Tomorrow: Mother Goose Day; Chocolate Parfait Day; Kentucky Derby Day

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Story Telling

Today was a celebration of story telling, and in my opinion, there is no better way to tell a story than through music. As I considered that, I was reminded of one of my favourite hymns. The story about how that hymn came to be is amazing, and so is they way David Phelps sings it. If you get through the Gaither-ness of this video, you'll have goosebumps by the end. ;-)

What did you do to celebrate today?

Tomorrow: Great Poetry Reading Day; Kiss Your Mate Day; National Blueberry Pie Day

Monday, April 26, 2010

East Meets West Pretzels...

Posting every two days is getting to be a habit! While the goal is to post every day, I was too busy kickin' my hubby's butt in our "East Meets West" Wii challenge last night to care abour posting about it! ;-) Yesterday we celebrate "East Meets West", a day originally started in the sporting world as a battle between, well, the east and the west! Now the day is simply celebrated with a healthy competition of any kind, and since my hubby hails from the east (Southeast Asia) and I'm from the west we choose to battle it out with Mario Kart and other favourites on the Wii. He wiped the floor with me on Mario Kart since I can't even stay on the road, and I cleaned his clock on some fighting game purely because I pressed every single button the Wii-mote like a crazy woman! Ha ha. A good time was had by all...

Speaking of a good time, today's day of celebration, National Pretzel Day, got me thinking about a good time my hubby and I had in Pennsylvania many moons ago. My family made a road trip down to Lancaster country for my brother's wedding back in 1999, and while there we took my grandmother out on a day of touring the Amish country. Our favourite part of the day was chillaxin' in the car after shopping with huge, fresh-from-the-oven pretzels and lemonade. My granny still talks about that...

What did you do to celebrate yesterday? How about today?

Tomorrow: Babe Ruth Day; National Prime Rib Day; Tell a Story Day

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Blanketed Pigs

It's National Pigs n' a Blanket Day! What fun!

According to the websites I visited as I read up on the history of this holiday, pigs n' a blanket in the US is very different from my Canadian/British interpretation! My hubby and I immediately assumed that the blanketed pig morsels were breakfasts sausages wrapped in a pancake, but apparently our Yankee friends do it differently (sausages wrapped in a biscuit or pastry and baked for appetizer sized bites). What ever the case may be, these pigs are yummy, and we intend to celebrate them tonight at dinner with a meal we can confidently say our 18-month-old will eat! After all, who doesn't love pancakes?!?!?! ;-)

What will you do to celebrate life today?

Tomorrow: East Meets West Day; World Penguin Day; National Zucchini Bread Day.

Rained-Out Picnics

I had planned to celebrate yesterday (National Picnic Day) with a picnic lunch for our family. But alas the temperamental weather forced us to have our lunch indoors. So instead we picnicked on the floor of the living room, while our 18-month-old watched The Wiggles. It was fun.

Thinking about picnics did remind me of a fond memory from when my hubby and I were dating though. Until he met me, he'd never ever had a picnic on the ground before. Can you believe that? When I found that out I quickly packed a basket and wisked him off to Stanley Park to do it right. We picnicked under a tree overlooking the ocean (which then became "our spot" and where he proposed to me on a rainy November day), and then we enjoyed a visit to the Aquarium. Ahhh the memories. ;-)

What did you do to celebrate yesterday?

Today: Pigs n' a Blanket Day! What a perfect celebration for a Saturday!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Happy Earth Day!

It's Earth Day today, and to celebrate we are evaluating our current efforts to recycle, reuse, etc. and discussing ways that we can do our part to take better care of this world. While financial limitations (not to mention strata "rules") prevent us from going all out by installing solar panels to give us electricity and hot water or going to a hybrid car, if we could do these things we sooooooo would! Instead, we are diligent about turing lights off, recycle everything, try to eliminate waste, conserve on water and use engery-efficient bulbs and appliances.

What are you doing to celebrate earth day?


Tomorrow: Take a Chance Day; National Cherry Cheesecake Day; National Picnic Day;
National DNA Day

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Look A Likes n' Admin Assistants

So yesterday was "Look-A-Like Day" and I didn't blog. I didn't blog because I spent the entire day trying to figure out who I look like! I even used a cool app on to find out what celebrities I most resemble and... I got nothing. I have been told that the little girl in the remake of Miracle on 34th Street looks a lot like I did at that age, but apparently I'm one of a kind now! ;-) I guess that's not so bad.

Today marked yet another challenge in the days of celebration. Today was Kindergarten Day, National Chocolate Covered Cashews Day, and Administrative Professionals Day. I wasn't sure how to celebrate kindergarten aside from reminiscing about that time in my life. Chocolate covered cashews sounded well, gross. I love chocolate, and I love cashews, but not together! And I don't have an administraive assistant but rather, sort-of, act like one in my job. So...

... I guess that means I celebrate me today! ;-) Yeah me! Hee hee.

Hats off to all those who serve in an admistrative capacity. You make the world go round.

What did you do to celebrate today?

Tomorrow: Earth Day; National Jelly Bean Day.

Monday, April 19, 2010

High Fives, Blah blah, Animal Crackers and Garlic...

So I've been absent from the blogosphere for a few days, missing my chance to keep up with my daily post. The reason alone was celebration enough -- my parents were in town! While they were here on business, not pleasure, and thus in and out without too much time to spend with us, it was nice to have them here none-the-less, and great for them to spend time with our little monkey.

But while I may have missed my daily posting, that doesn't mean the celebrations stopped too. Friday was "High Five" day, and so we "high fived" with our toddler all day. She's finally gotten the hang of it (meaning doing it properly) and gives a pretty good slap to your hand if you leave it up in the air for her to hit. Pretty cute! ;-)

Saturday was "Blah, blah, blah" Day and we celebrated it in an unusual way. The idea behind the day is to do something that someone has been nagging you to do. So, since we've had plenty of people tell us it was high time to get a baby sitter and reclaim our "couplehood", we took the opportunity to enjoy an "adults only" dinner with my parents and hired a babysitter for the first time since our daughter entered the world. It was hard, but it was good.

Sunday was an easy day to celebrate simply because we have a toddler! It was National Animal Cracker Day, and what toddler doesn't love and animal cracker! She munched on them while we enjoyed the praise & worship time at The Life Centre, and of course later in the day as a snack. Yum!

And today? Well, today was National Garlic Day. And if you know us at all you know that we actually choose to celebrate this every day! We loooooooooove garlic. From garlic roasted hummus to yummy fish and broccoli smothered in garlic, let's just say we enjoye our day but don't smell so great now! ;-) Hee hee.

What have you done to celebrate over the last few days?

Tomorrow: Look Alike Day; Volunteer Recognition Day; National Pineapple Upside Down Cake; Lima Bean Respect Day

Thursday, April 15, 2010

98 Years Ago Today...

... the Titanic succumbed and sank to the bottom of the Atlantic.

What did you do to celebrate life today?

Tomorrow: National Eggs Benedict Day; National Stress Awareness Day; National Baked Ham with Pineapple Day; Day of the Mushroom; National High Five Day

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The Best Medicine

Laughter is truly the best medicine. We enjoy much laughter in our house, for which I am very grateful.

Today, on International Moment of Laughter Day, I give you these videos. Enjoy the giggles.

What did you do to celebrate laughter today?

Tomorrow: Rubber Eraser Day; Titanic Rememberance Day; National Glazed Ham Day

For the Love of the Game

Yesterday was "Scrabble Day." I love Scrabble (and all Facebook variations of the game). I have fond memories of playing the game with my Granny, and great fun playing it now with my hubby, and friends. To celebrate the occassion, I played a game... and found these great images of Scrabble themed items!

What did you do to celebrate life yesterday?

Today: International Moment of Laughter Day; Look Up at the Sky Day; National Pecan Day

Monday, April 12, 2010

Grilled Gooey Goodness

Today was a day of celebration that even our toddler could get into! Who doesn't love a good, gooey, grilled cheese sandwich? While I've been known to doctor up my grilled cheese with cheddar and sliced apples, other fruits, assorted meats, etc., today's occassion made the perfect lunch for us as a family, and thus I kept it simple... grilled ham and cheese. Ahhhhhhhhhh....

What did you do to celebrate today?

Tomorrow: Blame Someone Else Day; Scrabble Day; National Peach Cobbler Day

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Say Cheese!

Happy Cheese Fondue Day! In honour of today's celebration we are kickin' back tonight after the little monkey is safely tucked away in her bed, to enjoy a cheesey feast of fondue, bread, veggies, fruit and assorted meats. Yum.

What did you do to celebrate today?

Tomorrow: Big Wind Day; National Licorice Day; National Grilled Cheese Sandwich Day

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Oye, so behind...

The last few days have made it a challenge to keep up with my 365 Celebrations challenge! But, better late than never eh? ;-) So, in honour of yesterday's "Name Yourself Day"... just call me "LATE"!

Seriously though, I did think about names for myself yesterday. While I will go to the grave with the frustration of people mispronouncing my name, I do like my name and it's uniqueness. I wouldn't change it. The occassion did give me the opportunity to dream about what I'd call our 2nd child if we ever have one though. I saw the name "Zac" or "Zachary" the other day and thought it would be funny to name our son that (again should we ever have one... no, I am not pregnant). After all, our daughter's name starts with an "A" and if we have another he/she will be our last so naming them with a "Z" would be funny. A complete family from "A" to "Z"! ;-)

What did you do to celebrate yesterday?

Today's holidays of choice were: Golfer's Day (appropriate since the Masters is on in Augusta); National Siblings Day; National Cinnamon Crescent Day. I choose to celebrate "National Siblings Day" by bragging on my own siblings -- my two amazing bros! I have no idea if they will read this, but that's not the point. I adore my brothers and am so proud of both of them and the men they have become. Both are in full-time ministry, both have amazing, gorgeous, intelligent and devoted wives, and both have the cutest little boys on the earth. Between then I have five adorable nephews and a little niece on the way! Whoo hoo! So here's to my bros, Drew & Colin, and their families! Cheers to my nerds. I am so proud of you both!

What did you do to celebrate today?

Tomorrow: Cheese Fondue Day; Eighttrack Tape Day; Barbershop Quartet Day; National Submarine Day

Friday, April 09, 2010

You say Potato

Yesterday was National Empanada Day... a day I would have gladly celebrated with a fabulous recipe from my years in Ecuador, if it were not for the house guests we had, the cold bug that robbed both my daughter and I of sleep, and the sudden hospitalization of my mother-in-law all in one day! As a result, instead of trying my hand at making yummy empanada de carne, I wiped noses, made beds, worried and hung by the phone and wondered how our life had gone from "boring" to "chaotic" overnight. (Again a less on "control.")

Regardless of how spectacularly unfestive or un-celebratory our day was, I did think about how the empanada is really a world-wide food. While in Ecuador and in most Latin American countries it's called an empanada (stuffed bread or pastry), the Asian cultures have their versions of it in the form of spring rolls, pao, or post-stickers. Then there are India's samosas, Jamaica's patties, American fried pies, English cornish pasties, Italy's calzones, etc. All in all.. YUM! ;-)

What did you do to celebrate yesterday?

Today: Name Yourself Day; Winston Churchill Day; National Chinese Almond Cookie Day

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

My Favourite Recipe

Today's celebration of choice? National Coffee Cake Day! I had planned on making my favourite coffee cake recipe in honour of the day, but as I said in a post a few days ago, my hubby beat me to it! So, as we savour the last crumb of cake from the amazing job he did, I decided the best way to celebrate today was by sharing the recipe with you! This recipe is a family favourite, passed on to me by my mom, who got it from a friend off the mission field! Full of memories, full of flavour, and full of the good things that make cakes like this so good... calories! :-) Enjoy:

Strussel Coffee Cake

1. Beat together: 1 egg, 1/3 cup butter or magarine, and 1 cup of sugar.
2. In a separate bowl, mix together: 2 cups flour, 2 tsp baking powder, 1 tsp salt.
3. Mix dry ingredients, along with 1 cup of milk, alternately with the egg mixture until well blended. (Optional: add frozen blueberries before pouring into pan.)
4. Pour into a 9x9 (for a thicker cake) or 9x13 (for a thinner version) greased pan.
5. Top with a crumbly mixture of the following: 1/2 c chopped nuts, 1/3 c brown sugar, 1/4 c flour, 1/2 tsp cinnamon, and 3 Tbsp melted butter (mix until crumbly).
6. Bake at 350 degrees F for aprox 60 mins (for 9x9 pan) or 30 mins (for 9x13 pan) or until a tooth pick comes out clean.

What did you do to celebrate today?

Tomorrow: All is Ours Day; Draw a Picture of a Bird Day; National Empanada Day

Epitaph Day

Yesterday was "epitaph day." Sounds kind of morbid, I know. I wasn't really sure how to "celebrate" this day. It's not the kind of day that makes you break out the baloons and streamers, ya know?

Instead, this day gave me pause to sit and reflect on what an epitaph really is, and what I hope mine will say. After all, an epitaph is the last thing anyone writes about you. It reflects the life you lived and how those around you felt about you. It sums up, in a few words, what kind of life you lived.

This thought really made me stop and take stock of my life now. If I was to die today, what would my hubby and family write on my grave stone? Would I be happy with what they would right? And if not, what do I want it to say? And how do I need to change how I'm living to ensure it says what I want it to say?

Good food for thought.

What do you want your epitaph to say?


What did you do to celebrate yesterday?

Today: No Housework Day; World Health Day; National Coffee Cake Day

Monday, April 05, 2010

Creating a new holiday...

I wasn't sure what I would choose to celebrate today given the choices, and went to bed last night deliberating on my options:

"Dyngus Day" (which is a tradition in Poland where the men throw water at the women on the Monday following Easter) sounded like it would be fun... NOT!

"Go For Broke Day" is all about taking risks and frankly, we are already on a risky adventure as we wait for an open door in ministry.

"Raisin and Spice Day" sounded good only to me ... hubby and daughter not so much.

And "Caramel Day" well, no thanks. I'm not into caramel.

This morning, however, I awoke to the sounds of my daughter playing happily in the living room, the smell of coffee brewing, and the clattering of bowls and baking pans in the kitchen. My hubby, the gem of a man I married 12+ years ago, got up with our toddler when she woke at 6:30 a.m., and proceeded to bake a coffee cake (from scratch, with real butter and crushed pecans) using a recipe he knows I love. He is amazing. It was amazing. And he's never baked before!

What followed then, was a wonderful day of spontaneity. We showered and packed a lunch while our daughter napped this morning. Then we packed up the car and headed into the city to enjoy some fun at the aquarium. Following two hours of staring at fishes (all she could handle given the short attention span of a 17 month old), we enjoyed some popcorn, fed the ducks, and then tucked our little girl in her car seat for a nap as we slowly crusied our way home. (Oh, and we stopped at a local Japanese favorite too to pick up dinner!) A good time was had by all as we enjoyed our family monday, and the best part --- I didn't have to cook at all! ;-)

So today we started a new holiday tradition for our family. An Easter Monday full of family time, adventures out and good food!

What did you do today?

Tomorrow: Plan Your Epitaph Day; Sorry Charlie Day; National Caramel Popcorn Day

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Singin' the Bleus

It's Easter Sunday! He is risen! (Check out my previous post for my all-time favourite Easter song ...)

As we celebrate the most significant day in all of human history, we also mark this occasion by getting together with the inlaws for dinner. Tonight we'll be singin' the bleus as we celebrate the other holiday today -- Chicken Cordon Bleu Day! On the menu for us tonight:

Chicken Cordon Bleu served on a bed of Wild Rice & topped with a shallot cream sauce
Steamed Asapargus drizzled with butter & lemon juice
Spinach salad with cranberries, mandarin oranges &almonds
Crescent Rolls (courtesy of the Dough-Boy)
and Strawberry Shortcake

What are you doing to celebrate today?

Tomorrow: Go For Broke Day; Dyngus Day; National Raisin and Spice Bar Day; National Caramel Day

Was It A Morning Like This?

Was it a morning like this
When the Son still hid from Jerusalem?
And Mary rose from her bed
To tend the Lord She thought was dead

What is a morning like this,
When Mary walked down from Jerusalem?
And two angels stood at the tomb,
Bearers of news she would hear soon.

Did the grass sing?
Did the earth rejoice
To feel you again?
Over and over like a
Trumpet underground,
Did the earth seem to pound:
“He is risen”

over and over
in a never ending round
“He is risen, alleluia, alleluia!”

Was it an morning like this,
When Peter and John from Jerusalem?
And as they raced for the tomb,
Beneath their feet was there a tune?

Was it a morning like this,
When my Lord looked out
On Jerusalem?

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Droolling Allowed

In celebration of my all-time favourite, mouth-watering, rich n' creamy dessert of choice -- the Chocolate Mousse -- I leave you to drool over the following images:

What did you do to celebrate today?

Tomorrow: Easter Sunday - HE IS RISEN!; Hug a Newsman Day; Walk Around Things Day; Chicken Cordon Bleu Day; National Baked Ham with Pineapple Day

Friday, April 02, 2010

Hot Crossed Buns

The weather today seemed fitting given that it's Good Friday. As I sit here typing the wind is howling and the rain is pouring down. I often wonder what the day of the crucifixion was like, and imagine it being a day like we are having today. Heaven weeped that day, and I would guess the weather mirrored that.

But in the midst of the gloom of the day today was a sweetness in our home as the house filled with the aroma of freshly baked hot crossed buns. (No, I didn't bake them...). The warmth and sweetness of these buns a direct contrast to the sourness and coldness of the day outside. It seemed to represent the hope that we know exists in what otherwise would seem like a truly gloomy Friday. Hope that, while Friday looks bleak, Sunday is coming!

I am continually thankful that the story didn't end with that gloomy day on the cross. For in the sadness of that day, lingered a hope that there was something big coming! Praise God!

As we look toward the hope of Sunday, I close with a personal favourite:

What did you do to celebrate today?

Tomorrow: Tweed Day; National Chocolate Mousse Day

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Mouth Watering...

Today's chosen day of celebration - Sourdough Bread Day - made me think about and crave only one thing. This.

It is really the only way I truly enjoy sourdough bread. Too bad I didn't have an opportunity to get out and enjoy a clubhouse sandwiche today... ;-(

What did you do to celebrate today?

Tomorrow: 1st and most importantly -- Good Friday; National Peanut Butter & Jelly Day; National Walk to Work Day; Reconciliation Day; Hot Cross Bun Day